tv Erin Burnett Out Front CNN January 26, 2022 4:00pm-5:00pm PST
rule of law are worth it. >> indeed they are. we're going to hear much more about justice breyer's legacy tomorrow. he will appear with president biden tomorrow afternoon to formally announce his retirement. looking forward to that event. to our viewers, thanks for watching. erin burnett "out front" starts right now. it's putin's call, the u.s. responds to the russian president's security demands regarding ukraine. is it enough for putin to back down. supreme court justice stephen breyer is retiring, paving the way to name his successor, who's on the short list. and could having any role in january 6th disqualify some from becoming president. that's the legal challenge. let's go out front. good evening, i'm erin burnett. awaiting putin's response,
russia's president to respond to written responses to putin's demand. >> we make clear there are core principles we are committed to uphold and defend, including ukraine sovereignty, and territorial integrity, and the rights to choose security arrangements and alliances. the document is with them, and the ball is in their court. we'll see what we do, as i said repeatedly, whether they choose the path of diplomacy and dialogue, whether they decide to renew aggression against ukraine, we're prepared either way. >> secretary of state antony blinken there, sticking with territorial integrity, and drawing a red line on nato. putin can get what he wants on nato in less direct ways with other concessions. his spokesperson has indicated there are concessions on the table, they include the state department was specific yesterday, today they didn't put the exact list out. they mentioned the place of s
missi missiles exercises. now, on one hand it's important to consider that putin started all of this by putting more than 100,000 troops into position and then demanding and getting concessions from the united states to remove them. that's actually a pretty significant thing to consider on its own. as of tonight, the ball is once again in putin's court. so far what we have seen from him today is actions not words, told, putin stages more military drills in the arctic and moving more su 35 jets to belarus airfield, able to travel twice the speed of sound, and carry russia's most modern guided aircraft missiles. as the build up continues, cnn is learning that the u.s. is getting closer to moving troops into the region. now speaking with allies to deploy thousands of american boots on the ground, these troops, though, would not be heading to ukraine. among the countries where they could be headed, hungary,
romania, and bulgaria. that does bring them closer to russia's doorstep. again, it's not ukraine, and biden has been categorical they are not combat troops, and they will not fight. how much power do they have here to scare putin? that's another critical question. russia has ukraine surrounded on three sides, 127,000 troops stationed around ukraine's border, and as top u.s. officials have said again and again, there is no sign right now that russia is backing down. matthew chance is out front live in kyiv, ukraine. i know you have been talking to officials there tonight as we await putin's response to america's, you know, written list of concessions and responses. what are they telling you? >> well, i mean, despite those raising tensions that you just set out, there's been some pretty upbeat remarks tonight, erin from the ukrainian officials that we have been in contact with. first of all, they have told us
that they're satisfied. that was the remark they used, the word they used to describe the u.s. response to russia's demands for ukraine, never to join nato, and for the other security demands it had, though particularly, you know, happy with the fact that ukraine's sovereignty, and territorial integrity have been emphasized in that u.s. response. they called it a comprehensive, well set out and well argued set of responses which they said it would be logical for russia to accept, of course, as you mentioned, we haven't heard anything back from the russians yesterday. in fact, vladimir putin with whom this decision about which way to go with ukraine lies hasn't really said anything about ukraine for the past several weeks, and so it's been sort of deafening that silence coming from the kremlin. there's also been some positive remarks, though, coming on the other strand of the diplomatic front. there have been meetings between ukraine and russia directly, along with france and germany, to discuss the situation in eastern ukraine, which is
essentially run by russian back rebels at the moment. they have come together for the first time in a long time. they talked about reinforcing the cease fire that was agreed last year, and ukrainian officials saying the fact that the talks are happening, there are more talks scheduled for a couple of weeks from now is a positive sign, so while we're still getting this military build up in the region on the part of russia and possibly soon with the united states as well, the ewe uukrainians are trying t a positive spin on it. >> thank you, matthew chance. i want to go to the retired general breedlove, i appreciate your time and perspective here. we know the u.s. gave a series of written responses to russia's demands today, what is putin's next move, does he counter those responses, formally, how does this happen? or is military action the next move? >> first of all, erin, thanks
for having me on tonight wharks we see across the last several days is what we'll see more of. mr. putin continues to bring forces different enabling forces from hospital operations to others to the front to make him more ready to take action, and all of this serves the secondary motive of continuing to up the ante, the pressure to to get the concessions. >> so general, we know putin knows the united states is never going to publicly come out and say forget about everything, that's not going to happen, and putin knows that's not going to happen. he wants to get there via other ways, but what is his end game here, general, do you think? >> well, first of all, we empathize with support and continue to support ukrainian
brothers and sisters. it's bigger than them, they are the tools, the battle ground in a bigger game. if you look at the documents mr. putin passed to us and sort of said take it or leave it, sign it or i'm going into ukraine, those documents were bigger than ukraine, and all about rewriting the security architecture of eastern europe. remember mr. putin said not long ago the greatest calamity of our time was the collapse of the warsaw pact, and now he's trying to rebuild those structures that look an awful lot like that wau satellite -- war saw pact. >> they are in discussions to deploy thousands of troops to eastern european countries. putin's spokesperson said this is quote building up tension, russia's quote observing these actions of the united states with profound concern.
careful with their words here. let me ask you, general, what you think of these moves given that the united states has categorically said they're not engaging in combat on the part of ukraine. does this troop build up, what does it do to putin? >> well, mr. putin is concerned about alerting the troops. we haven't moved any of them. every day he's moving more troops to the front. this argue that he's having about being worried about us accelerating the problems is really an internal message, i think, to his troops. it makes absolutely no sense to the exterior audience, when he's got over 120,000 in increasing that we are worrying him by merely alerting 8,000. >> light. and so i think that's kind of a
false argument. i'm so glad you corrected yourself at the top of the hour. you said these weren't combat troops. these are combat troops but you're correct, you said it correctly the sec time. we don't intend to put those boots on the ground in ukraine. >> well, president biden has made it clear he doesn't want them to engage in combat, and he has taken that off the table. >> that's correct. but they are combat capable troops. some of our very best. >> yes. general, i appreciate your time. and thank you very much. when we talk about the military options here, obviously the thing when you take combat off the table that is on the table is punishing sanctions, that's what the united states has consistently said again and again, and in order for the u.s. and nato to have any beneath, all nato allies have to be on board with the sanctions, especially the big leaders. germany's commitment to standing up to russia is unclear. they did agree to send 5,000 helmets to ukraine. that's a token in the sense of so far they have categorically
refused to export any weapons to the region, something which the united states has done and other nato allies has also done. the u.s. has been putting javelin defense systems and other support into ukraine. part of the reason for germany's reticence is historical and a big part is its dependence on russian gas. 55 to 70% of germany's gas comes from russia. out front is toby rice, and i appreciate your time. so let me just ask you, germany relies on russia for gas. we know that. this has been true for years. the risk and challenges of that have been true for years and nothing has changed. is there any other immediate alternative in place that you know of that germany could get its energy, its gas from. >> absolutely, it's the united states powered by american shale is a solution that could prevent this type of crisis we're seeing over there to prevent this from
happening. everything we're seeing over there started by being born out of an energy crisis, and first, you only saw the first phase of an energy shortage and the skyrocketing energy prices that create tremendous pain and suffering for residents of those nations, and when these nations give up their energy security, bad things happen, like these soaring prices, the next thing that happens, phase 2, industry shut down, economies grind to a halt, and unfortunately stage 3 is where you start seeing military conflict, either from the nations that are looking to secure their energy security or in cases where the people that provide energy and have tremendous power over those countries look to exert that power and exert their influence in the region, and certainly, putin has the power where over 40% of the energy supply to europe comes from russia, and this is what happens when nations give up their energy security and it's really unfortunate and it's a terrible
thing to happen, it's more disheartening to know this could have been completely prevented had the united states natural gas industry been able to do more for our allies in europe. >> the u.s., people should be aware is now the largest producer of the natural gas. is the biden administration talking to you at all, to your industry about getting involved here so that germany would be able to be fully on board with punishing sanctions because guess what, there's american natural gas waiting here at your port. >> yeah, it's encouraging to hear biden talk about u.s. l and g, that's great. you know, i hope that he understands, you know, in addition to talking about putting 8,000 troops on the front lines of ukraine, we should be talking about activating the 800,000 roughnecks, the millions of pipe fitters, the boiler makers here in the united states to create the u.s. l and g and secure the energy supply for the people in europe, and that is going to
have a tremendous effect and it's going to be a way to do it peacefully. >> lelizabeth warren has said wy would you want to export when prices are high at home and americans are hurting. is president biden on board with that point of view, limiting your ability to export to europe at this time? >> yeah, i mean, the facts on pricing are pretty clear, and i think it's what we told senator warren is that, you know, natural gas prices have never been lower for people in the united states compared to what people are paying around the world. our issue isn't about the resource. we have the resource, we have the desire to do more. our problem is we face -- we need more pipeline infrastructure to connect our low cost gas to these markets, and just to put this in perspective, in the united states here in pennsylvania, with gas prices around $3.50, in new york, where you face pipeline challenges, gas prices are $10. in elizabeth warren's home state
in massachusetts, even further pipeline infrastructure challenges, gas prices are $20, and now we look international. gas prices are over $30, so it's not about the resource and our ability to help. it's about getting connected to this infrastructure that we critically need, and it's all things that we've done before. we just need some more cooperation to build this infrastructure that not only the u.s. need to lower energy prices here in the united states, but also provide energy security to the world. >> and to europe, right, which right now is looking at the u.s. and qatar, and nobody seems to have any extra gas. thank you, toby, i appreciate your time. >> you got it. who will president biden pick to replace justice stephen breyer. plus, why a group of lawyers with comments like this will disqualify some republicans from running for reelection. >> the democrats with all the fraud they have done in this election, the republicans hiding
and not fighting, they are trying to silence your voice. >> and the fed preparing to take a major step to tame surging prices. ♪ liberty, liberty, liberty, liberty ♪ only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty, liberty, liberty, liberty ♪ this is your home. this is your family room slash gym. the guest bedroom slash music studio. the daybed slash dog bed. the living room slash yoga shanti slash regional office slash classroom. and this is the basement slash panic room. maybe what your family needs is a vacation home slash vacation home. find yours on the vrbo app. ♪ do you struggle with occasional nerve aches in your hands or feet? try nervivenerve relief from the world's #1 selling nerve care company. nervive contains alpha lipoic acid
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nearly 30 years. this gives president biden his first opportunity to nominate a justice to the court while democrats control congress. biden declining to weigh in when asked about it earlier today. >> there has been no announcement from justice breyer. let him make whatever statement he's going to make, and i'll be happy to talk about it later. >> the nomination to replace bryer, a reliable -- kaitlan collins is out front from the white house. what do you know about the event at the white house. the president has known about the retirement before we found out about it. he has had time to think about who he's going to nominate, what is he thinking. >> this is something he has been thinking about for a long time, ever since he was a candidate. to put the first black woman on the supreme court if he got an opportunity like this one, the one we believe justice breyer is
going to present to the president when he makes the formal announcement he is retiring, stepping down from the court, and you know, they say timing is everything. that statement is never more true than when it comes to the supreme court, and this has prompted a sigh of relief from democrats who were worried about republicans taking over the senate majority come the midterms this november, and so this is certainly welcome from the white house but they are being very hesitant here and declining to say anything publicly about this until the official announcement has come down from justice breyer who we will see here at the white house tomorrow i'm told with president biden. of course that would likely be the official announcement, and we'll wait to see that, but yeah, justice breyer did tell the white house, conveyed to the white house that he did have the intention to step down t. that is not something he said to president biden directly. the white house was aware, maybe just a few people that this was coming. of course the big question is what does this fight look like going forward, after president biden makes his pick. his chief of staff ron klain is someone who has been involved in several supreme court
nominations before. president biden himself was the chairman of the senate judiciary committee that will be running this. we do know senate majority leader chuck schumer has privately conveyed he would like to see democrats move as quickly almost as republicans did with amy coney barrett who was confirmed 30 days after former president trump nominated her, and confirmed ultimately days before the 2020 election. they're going to be looking to move at a timetable like that. this could move quickly once justice breyer has formally announced and president biden has made his pick! i want to go now to robert barnes, a "washington post" reporter who has covered the supreme court for more than 15 years, dana bash, our chief political correspondent and norma miz, a personal friend of br -- robert let me start with you. in obviously the past, you know, months and recent years here as trump has nominated nominee
after nominee, justice breyer has been on a pressure campaign from progressives to retire while democrats control the senate, while they have the white house. what role did all of this pressure play in his decision time something. >> well, you know, justice breyer has been on the court for a long time but he was in politics, too. he's a former senate aide at senator kennedy, so he understands the politics of this, i think as well as anyone else. he didn't want to leave at the end of last term. lots of big cases coming up. but i think that everyone sort of knew and expected that he saw what had happened with justice ginsberg, when she didn't retire at a time that president obama could have named her replacement. and that he was not likely to let that happen again. >> so dana, the vacancy now has this massive political battle ahead, right, the midterms are coming. this is going to be front and center. republicans are likely by my of
the analyses out there to take back the senate. kaitlan mentioned justice amy coney barrett confirmed in 30 days. zoom, speed, other confirmation took two to three times as long. how quickly can senate democrats move through the confirmation process, dana, and is there anything republicans can do to really stop this long enough to get to the midterms? >> well, i'll take that last question first. no. there's nothing that republicans can do to stop this if the democrats have all of their democratic senators on board with whomever the nominee is. they can't even lose one because you need a simple majority and that's all that the democrats have in the senate, if you include, if there is a tie needed, if you include the vice president. the republicans could slow things down the way democrats tried to do for amy coney barrett, things like not allowing for what's known as a quorum in the judiciary
committees, meaning don't let them meet, and there are some other things that they can do on the senate floor when it comes to that, but you're talking about hours. you're talking about days. you're not talking about a significant amount of time, and this is so important, and i was talking about the 50/51 vote threshold. that is the case on all administration nominees. all the talk about the filibuster, should we, shouldn't we get rid of it, that we saw play out in the senate last week, erin, that's about legislation. the ship has already said on nominees. first, the democrats did it with lower level judges and administration nominees, and then mitch mcconnell did it for the supreme court. and so all bets are off. there is tno filibuster. >> now we can see what happens, you end up with a polarized court as a result of getting need for consensus by getting rid of the filibuster.
i want to ask about that in a moment. norm, will let me ask you about who is going to replace justice breyer first as this process begins. biden was clear throughout the campaign about who he would name to the court in specific ways. here he is. >> i'm looking forward to making sure there's a black woman on the supreme court. number one, i commit that if i'm elected president, have an opportunity to appoint someone to the courts i'll appoint the first black woman to the courts tv it's long overdue. >> we're putting together a list of a group of african-american women who are qualified and have the experience to be in the court. >> and the white house said tonight, norm, that biden stands by that pledge. is it a good thing for the president to be so open and blatant about the fact that being a black woman is a requirement for the job? >> erin, the supreme court is the most undemocratic of our power centers in american
governance because of course those justices are not elected. they're chosen by others who are elected. presidents of both parties have talked about the criteria for judges and for justices. i agree with president biden, we're long overdue to have an african-american woman on the supreme court, and it's appropriate that he put that issue as part of his platform before the american people, so i do think it's appropriate. >> so robert, let me ask you about this point about the filibuster, democrats, as dana was laying out, they only need 51 votes to confirm whomever biden chooses and this is because it used to be 60 votes. the whole point was to have someone on the judiciary, you want more consensus, you don't want someone on the far left or far right, you need the 60 votes. mitch mcconnell got rid of it for supreme nominees, for retaliation after democrats got rid of it for lower court nominees. this is what's happened across the judicial system. does this take away obviously
any pressure that biden would have to pick someone who is seen as more of a consensus, more of a moderate choice? >> i don't think it takes away all pressure. i mean, certainly we've seen that he's had some problems with some democratic senators in the ranks. the administration has been quite successful in getting its judicial nominees through the senate relatively easy, i would say, and biden is pretty much on a record breaking pace on that. >> yeah. >> but, you know, it's never -- it's never a done deal until you actually know who the person is. >> right. and of course, you know, you never -- sometimes you never know until they are there. i mean, dana, on a basic level, the court will still have a 6-3 conservative majority, no matter who biden choose, right, no matter how far left they are or are not, right, but as someone who presided over six supreme court nomination hearings when he was chairman of the judiciary
committee, this is on biden's resume, he understands how this is going to play out, better than almost anyone. >> it's so true. he understands it, his top aides, kaitlan mentioned ron klain, he has been through countless supreme court nominations, both in the counsels off and joe biden's side on that judiciary committee. he understands. now, what he understands if you take the clarence thomas situation out of it, which maybe it's hard to do, he understands the old senate, where it was a little bit different. i mean, stephen breyer, ruth baden ginsberg was confirmed by a huge bipartisan majority. so i think that what robert was saying is it's not a done deal that it's going to be completely partisan. it's not just the democrats, you will potentially see some republicans vote yes, depending on who the nominee is. >> and norm, one thing we've seen president trump's supreme court picks, you know, he kind
out of thought it would be his court and do all of that. they have gone against him, all three of them on major issues, eliminating obama care, blocking the challenge to the 2020 election. last week they ruled in favor of the select committee getting access to his white house papers that he had fought, right, i mean, there's not necessarily any guarantee that gubiden is going to know how someone is going to vote. >> that's right, erin, and justice breyer has been fiercely independent, courting the ire of liberals on issues like his fourth amendment, his search and seizure jurisprudence, so there is no guarantee. it is important, however, to work with known quantities because of the momentous nature of the supreme court appointment, and that is why i think judge catange brown jackson that we litigated, the
don mcghan case we counselled for impeachment, thezshe has be approved by a bipartisan group, all democrats and three republicans, that's why she's the front runner. >> i thank all of you so much. thank you so much for your reporting and your perspective. and next, a group of lawyers believe one congressman's role on january 6th should disqualify him for reelection, just categorically out. do they have a legal case and could this affect the former president as well. plus, the taking on the surge in prices, and it will come at an even cost. nice! you got it. and thanks to voya, i'm confident about my future. oh dad, the twins are now... ...vegan. i know, i got 'em some of those plant burgers. - nice! - yeah. voya provides guidance for the right investments and helps me be prepared for unexpected events. they make me feel like i've got it all under control. [crowd] yeah! because i do. ok, that was awesome. voya. be confident to
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tonight, could donald trump and other republicans who pushed the big lie then incited the deadly insurrection be barred from seeking office. this is the hope of a group of lawyers arguing in the state of north carolina that congressman madison cawthorn should not be able to seek reelection under section 3 of the 14th amendment. it says in part quote no person shall be a senator or representative in congress or hold any office who having previously taken an oath to
support the constitution of the united states shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. it was cawthorn who tweeted two days before the deadly insurrection in part i quote him january 6th is fast approaching and the future of this republic hinges on the actions of a solitary few. it's time to fight. and here's just a little of what he said on january 6th, and months later about the people arrested for storming the capitol. >> wow, this crowd has some fight in it. the democrats with all the fraud they have done in this election, the republicans hiding and not fighting, they are trying to silence your voice. >> what are you doing to support the 535 americans that were captured from january 6th. >> political hostages. the big problem is we don't know where all the political prisoners are. >> out front now, ron fine, the
legal director of free speech for people a nonpartisan interest group that is part of this challenge. you say this challenge against madison cawthorn is the first of many like it. why do you believe this issue is so clear cut? >> thanks, erin, the 14th amendment was created after the civil war to make sure that it didn't happen again, and when we have members of congress or other officials who are taking their oath to support the constitution and then trashing it as they engage in the insurrection, the republican congress that passed the 14th amendment wisely said those people should never be entrusted with public office again, and that is why we're bringing this challenge. >> so cawthorn's responded, he says your argument i quote him is asinine and insane. his lawyer tells the ”the new york times”, ron, this is quote the most frivolous case i have ever seen. what do you say to them? >> i hope they take it more seriously when they get to the proceedings before the north
carolina state board of elections because the statute under which we've filed this d challenge on behalf of 11 north carolina voters says that now that we have provided a reasonable suspicion that cawthorn is disqualified from office, the burden of proof shifts from kcawthorn to prove e is qualified, and we're going to be able to subpoena witnesses and documents and take his deposition before that hearing, so i think he'd better prepare for it. >> that is an important point, and also the point that this could be the beginning of many, and i just wanted to play for you just a couple of obviously the many times that trump himself pushed the big lie ahead of the deadly insurrection that he of course helped incite, here he is. >> that was a rigged election. but we're still fighting it, and you'll see what's going to happen. the democrats are trying to steal the white house. you cannot let them. >> we fight. we fight like hell, and if you don't fight like hell you're not going to have a country anymore.
>> i know, ron, you say you've warned officials in all 50 states that you could challenge any attempt by trump to run again in 2024. obviously those are just a few of many examples of the same sort of rhetoric and commentary. how would this work? how would you do it? >> well, erin, in every state there's a separate statutory framework and a different timetable for filing candidacy challenges. they happen at different times, and they have different legal frameworks, but we along with an organization we're partnering with called our revolution are bringing this to the attention of election officials now so that when we do file those challenges, if mr. trump decides to run for another term in 2024, they will be prepared for it, and they won't have to confront it for the first time under the urgent time frame of litigation. >> ron, thank you very much. i appreciate your time. >> thank you so much. and indinext, the fed says
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new tonight, the federal reserve rattling markets, stocks dropping dramatically, i mean, dramatically, look at this chart, just in the minutes after the fed chairman jerome powell began speaking this afternoon, and signalled an interest rate hike was coming, we all knew it was coming. as he spoke, boom, it went down. >> i would say that the committee is of a mind to raise the federal funds rate at the march meeting, assuming that conditions are appropriate for doing so. i think there's quite a bit of room to raise interest rates without threatening the labor market. >> quite a bit of room to raise interest rates without threatening the labor market. that's terrifying to a lot of people. that means there's a lot of room to send rates higher, credit cards, mortgages, you name
itme. it comes as chairman powell admits inflation is getting worst. president of bianco research. the fed is going to raise interest rates a bunch of times. it comes out today with this announcement from chairman powell as recent polls show 8 in 10 americans worry inflation is going to get worse from here. half of americans say rising prices have caused hardship for their families which makes sense when you think about things like milk in some kacases doubling i price. is this problem going to get worse from here right now, the inflation problem? >> it's going to get worse over the next few months if you go by the official statistics and then it should peak in the spring, and we all have that expectation, and then the question is how fast does it get better after that. and there's varying opinions about whether or not inflation is going to come down quickly or come down slowly, and i side with more of the market consensus that it's probably
going to come down slower than we would like, and that's going to keep the federal reserve looking to try and attack the inflation problem by continuing to raise interest rates. >> of course if it comes down as interest rates go up, that carries its own set of pain and suffering for regular americans. when you look at market today, so chairman powell starts talking at about 2:30 in the afternoon, and i want to s emphasize here, the markets expected him to say there's room to raise interest rates. the market starts going down, even though they theoretically said what they expected him to say. >> he did say what we expected, but the quote at the beginning where he said that they have plenty of room to raise interest rates means that he's going to raise rates more than what he thinks. to give you one example, the market had been pricing in three interest rate hikes for 2022 before he spoke and five after he spoke, and so we just added
two rate hikes that while he spoke, because of that idea that they've got plenty of room, and as you pointed out, you raise the cost of money, make it more expensive, slow down economic activity and that hurts earnings and hurts the economy but hopefully you're doing that in a delicate way to bring down the costs of everything. one thing about inflation, it hits everybody. there's nobody that has avoided inflation, and it hurts people at the lower end of the spectrum because they don't have stocks or a home that can go up in value that can offset the cost of higher prices as well. >> jim, i appreciate your perspective. i don't like your use of the word delicate. it makes me worried. i don't have a whole lot of confidence in any of this being delicately done. but it is a fair word. thank you so much, i appreciate it. >> thank you. and next, putin's road map to taking ukraine. it may already be playing out, and in another country that's under the control of russia. wait until you see this. and an update about a woman we first introduced you to last
week. you may remember megan battling stage 4 cancer, her surgery was rescheduled because of covid. we have an update. what you need, and we gotta do it fast. [limu emu squawks] woo! thirty-four miles per hour! new personal record, limu! [limu emu squawks] he'll be back. only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty, liberty, liberty, liberty. ♪
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>> singers: ♪ safelite repair, safelite replace. ♪ tonight, russia amassing troops in belarus. clearing the way for all of this for russian troops to be, you know, in another country, a third country amassing on the border would be putin's top ally, the belarusan president. it appears it's a model designed for ukraine. a model where putin calls the shots and anyone pushing the rule pays a horrible price. >> russia's army is encircling ukraine. putin's trips now pouring into neighboring belarus allegedly for military exercises. all with the help of putin's
friend, alexander luke chen ko. claiming the exercises are only a reaction to ukrainian moves. >> we were not the first ones to start paying attention to our southern border. ukrainians began to gather troops there. i don't understand why. >> he's heard the lies too many times. from her exile in lithuania, she's been leading the opposition and speaking exclusively with cnn says the u.s. and its allies must act decisively. >> what's going on in belarus with all this military drills is very concerning and those are watching this very attentively and we understand that regime now in position and maybe they could like allow use belarus territory for kremlin's aids. >> she had him on the ropes in
2020. a housewife and mother, she took the reigns after her own husband, a politician, was jailed by him. according to the u.s. and its allies, he beat him in the presidential election, but he rigged the election. what followed were peaceful protests and then a brutal crackdown that jailed or exiled most of the opposition. he managed to stay in power mostly thanks to putin, she says. effectively making him putin's stooge. and putting belarus's army at the russian president's disposal. >> we don't know what steps we can do to keep his power not to look like loser in this situation, but he also understands that he's this -- and just prolonging all this political games to russia.
>> while she continues to fight for change in belarus, she remanes devoted to her family, openly admitting she is sometimes afraid. especially since her husband was recently sentenced to 18 years in jail after a trial the u.s. and the eu called a sham. >> i'm scared every day. scared for people in belarus, for my own family. you cannot choose. you have to go forward, knowing that we are you know, strong nation. >> while he's become an international pariah after essentially hijacking an eu flagged plane to arrest an opposition blogger and unleashing a migrant crisis this fall, he does remain in business. not just thanks to russia, but also china as xi recently called for deeper economic ties despite u.s. and economic sanctions. but she believes allowing a massive russian force into the country will further discredit
him. >> this is like invisible resistance, but it is going ton every day so i'm sure i'll go back to belarus the same as hundreds of thousands of those in our political prisons. >> and erin, she believes what she calls the invisible resistance is a lot stronger and that change can happen in belarus. meanwhile, the u.s. has clearly seen the threat of russia possibly using belarus as a launch pad for an attack on ukraine. in fact, the state department spokesman, he said that if that were to happen, luke shen ko would be in trouble and face swift and decisive action from the u.s. >> thank you very much. important report. next, an update on a woman we spoke to last week whose crucial cancer surgery took a backseat because of other covid patients.
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talking about how her surgery was put on hold. she was told the surgery qualified as non-urgent. >> it gets me so riled up because this isn't an optional surgery for me. this isn't just a shoulder surgery or something like that. this is something that's actually growingn inside of me. we have proof the chemos have not worked for me. >> i'm so, so glad for you and i know you're just waiting to go back home and hug your two children. we wish you every recovery. "ac 360" starts now. good evening. it isn't often one person paves a way for others to make history just as stephen breyer's does just that. a formal announcement could come from the president tomorrow and though it won't tilt the balance, the departure allows president biden to fil