A new look, a new phase of the impeachment process: this week’s “Face the Nation” tackles the big questions surrounding next-steps in the Trump impeachment probe and White House reaction to news of the day — all on a brand new DC set.
Here’s the big takeaways from Sunday’s episode of “Face the Nation” with Margaret Brennan
NSA Robert O’Brien: Pensacola shooting “appears to be a terrorist attack”
- National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien said that Friday’s shooting at a naval base in Florida “appears to be a terrorist attack.” The gunman was a member of the Saudi Air Force and an aviation student at the base.
- What O’Brien said: “To me, it appears to be a terrorist attack,” O’Brien said on “Face the Nation” on Sunday. “I don’t want to prejudge the investigation, but it appears that this may be someone that was radicalized, whether it was here or it’s unclear if he’s got any other ties to other organizations.
- On Iran prisoner exchange: O’Brien says that the Iranian prisoner exchange for Chinese-American scholar Xiyue Wang was not a precondition for direct talks with Iran, adds that the U.S. “got a great deal out of this.”
- On possible Lavrov meeting: O’Brien says the administration is “working” on an official visit between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and President Trump. “You’ll have to wait and see. But I think there’s a possibility that’ll happen. We’re working on it,” O’Brien told CBS News’ Margaret Brennan in a post-interview conversation on “Face the Nation.”
Why this all matters: O’Brien’s comments on the deadly shooting at the Florida base are the strongest out of the Trump administration thus far. President Trump and top law enforcement officials have declined to say whether the shooting was terrorism related. A U.S. official told the Associated Press that Alshamrani and three others watched videos of mass shootings during a dinner party he hosted a dinner party earlier in the week.
As for a potential meeting with Russia’s foreign minister, the timing of the potential meeting may raise eyebrows by critics given the status of the highly contentious impeachment probe. Some Democrats, including House Intelligence chair Rep. Adam Schiff, have criticized Mr. Trump for attempting to involve Russia in domestic politics, given that the U.S. intelligence community concluded Russia interfered in the 2016 election with the hopes of boosting Mr. Trump’s campaign.
Mark Meadows says impeachment by House not “inevitable if you follow the facts”
- Republican Rep. Mark Meadows said Sunday he does not believe it’s “inevitable” the House of Representatives will impeach President Trump and predicted no House Republicans will join their Democratic counterparts if articles of impeachment are brought to a vote.
- What Meadows said: “I don’t think it’s inevitable if you follow the facts,” Meadows, a close ally of Mr. Trump’s, said Sunday on “Face the Nation.” When the House does begin voting on articles of impeachment, Meadows says he doesn’t “see a single Republican defecting,” and suggested some Democrats may not vote to impeach the president on specific articles.
- Why that matters: The staunch defender of the president represents the growing swath of Republicans who are willing to go to the mat denying any possible reality that the president will likely be impeached. The White House itself has all but surmised that impeachment would be a likely scenario — with White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway telling “Face” just last week that Trump was ready for every eventuality should the House vote to impeach.
- Meadows is also still hammering home the sentiment that the entire Republican caucus is laser-focused in its defense of Trump — saying that if the House does move to impeach, he doesn’t “see a single Republican defecting,” and suggested some Democrats may not even vote to impeach the president on specific articles — a scenario political watchers will just have to wait to see to believe.
Adam Schiff: Democrats can’t “charge everything” in articles of impeachment
- California Congressman Adam Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said fellow congressional Democrats, while currently weighing a variety of charges against him, can’t charge every transgression and wrongdoing they believe President Trump has committed while in office in their articles of impeachment.
- What Schiff said: “As a former prosecutor, it’s always been my strategy in a charging decision — and an impeachment in the House is essentially a charging decision — to charge those that there is the strongest and most overwhelming evidence and not try to charge everything, even though you could charge other things,” Schiff said on “Face the Nation” Sunday. “That’s my guiding philosophy.”
- Why that matters: While Schiff’s own House panel has compiled a scathing report on the heaps of evidence against Mr. Trump committing offenses against his oath of office, it shows that Democrats are actively trying to narrow the focus on what is the single most impeachable offense during what has otherwise been a particularly broad and wide-ranging impeachment process.
A new era with a new look: “Face the Nation” unveils its new D.C. studio
- With an historic anniversary under our belt, new changes came to “Face the Nation” this Sunday. Viewers were able to see a fresh visual experience on this episode of “Face the Nation” as we rolled out our brand new CBS News D.C. studio — fully equipped with the leading edge of broadcast studio technology.
- What’s new: With 17 LED video walls, viewers will be able to see a more dynamic, interactive look to “Face,” made up of 41,610,240 individual pixels.
- The studio will also serve as the network’s main space working to broadcast breaking news and special reports to CBS News viewers on a moment’s notice.
- Why it matters: The new studio is designed to enhance CBS News’ ability to tell our viewers the important news of the day in the most effective and visual way possible, without ever getting in the way of the story.
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