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President Obama Speaks in Orlando; Will Congress Pass Gun Legislation?; Interview with Sen. Bill Nelson; Interview with Rep. John Mica; Senator John McCain blames President Obama for the Orlando Massacre. Aired 10-11p ET

Aired June 16, 2016 - 22:00   ET


[22:00:00] ANDERSON COOPER, AC360 SHOW HOST: In fact, the One Orlando Fund is the one that the mayor and others are kind of recommending and that's going to try to distribute the money I think to a number of organizations, but again, check it out on

Our coverage continues right now with Don Lemon. Don?

DON LEMON, CNN TONIGHT SHOW HOST: Breaking news. And there is a lot of it tonight about the man responsible for the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.

This is CNN Tonight. I'm Don Lemon, live in Orlando.

Once again, President Barack Obama has to console the victim's families.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: I held and hugged grieving family members and parents, and they asked why does this keep happening?


LEMON: And as each day that goes by, we are learning more about the nightclub killer. Omar Mateen and his wife exchanging text messages during the deadly rampage. The gunman's anger stretching back to his childhood.

Elementary records show that he was disciplined 31 times for aggressive and violent behavior.

And was Mateen conflicted about his sexuality? One long term patron of Pulse Nightclub says the killer was on gay dating apps for years and even sent a nude photo of himself to another man.

We'll get to all of that tonight. But I want to begin with CNN correspondent Michelle Kosinski and Brian Todd, both with the latest on the investigation.

Michelle, the president met with victim's families today and then spoke about the attack. What did he say? MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: I mean, he spoke of

indescribable grief and fear. After this private meeting the survivors, first responders and the families of victims, and he essentially said, he was bringing their plea to the American public.

If we don't do something more to stop certain people from getting their hands on weapons, especially things like assault rifles, he said that is essentially the same thing as choosing to let it happen again.


OBAMA: I held and hugged grieving family members and parents, and they asked why does this keep happening. And they pleaded that we do more to stop the carnage.

They don't care about the politics, neither do I. This debate needs to change. It's outgrown the old political stalemates. The notion that the answer to this tragedy would be to make sure that more people in a nightclub are similarly armed to the killer defies common sense.

Those who defend the easy accessibility of assault weapons should meet these families and explain why that makes sense.


KOSINSKI: We have now seen the president make a similar trip like this after a mass shooting 10 times. And there have been times that we have seen him more angry, and more emotional, and at one point he cried talking about the victims of the Sandy Hook shooting.

But here I think what came through is his tiredness and disgust that, yes, it has happened again. And what he didn't was in very direct language laid out a broad argument, he seemed to cover all of his bases for why this is about more than fighting ISIS militarily, and he said you look at the shooting and others, these are lone wolves radicalized at home, and that requires, he said, a different approach. Don.

LEMON: Yes, yes. He was clearly upset, Michelle, and frustrated, but also looking for action from Congress on restricting guns. What's the latest on that?

KOSINSKI: Well, we hear him asking for action all of the time. I think what's interesting now is you do hear talk of compromise, but more than that, there are bills being proposed on both sides of the aisle right now in the Senate.

The problem though, is these are dueling bills, there's clearly an effort out there, again, on both sides to make some tweaks to the law, to require people who are on maybe it's a watch list, and maybe it's a no-fly list to make it harder for them to get guns, but there is still very much a stalemate.

There are votes coming up this coming week, but again, they are dueling bills, and it doesn't look like any of them are going to be pass, at least not at this point, Don. LEMON: Yes. One of the sponsors of one of those bills, Florida

Senator Bill Nelson will speak to us in just a moment about that.

Thank you, Michelle. I want to bring in now Brian Todd. Brian, there is news today of even more communication from Mateen during the attack, what did you learn?

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Don, it is becoming really clear that this killer engaged in an extraordinary sequence of communications during the rampage. We've never seen anything like this really.

[22:04:59] Today, we got new information from law enforcement sources that Omar Mateen and his wife engaged in texts with each other, they sent texts to each other in the middle of the rampage, about two hours into it.

According to law enforcement sources, he texted her asking her if she had seen the news of what was going on. At some point, she texted him back saying that she loved him. We also found out from enforcement sources today that she tried to call him at least once during the rampage but she never got through.

Now, you couple this with the fact that we've already known that he call the TV station in the middle of this massacre, that he called 911 and professed his loyalty to ISIS, he called a friend and said good- bye.

We haven't seen anything like this in any of this horrible mass killings that we've seen of this kind of communication right in the middle of the event itself, it really is extraordinary, Don.

LEMON: Yes. Very interesting. You've also learned, Brian, about what could have been a warning sign of Mateen's intention, tell us about that?

TODD: Don, we have new information tonight, we spent all day digging up records from the St. Lucie County school system, and talking to former classmates. This is a set of records from the St. Louis -- excuse me, St. Lucie County school system that we've dug up on his disciplinary record.

A 176 pages. It is extraordinary. He had really hundreds of disciplinary issues dating back to when he was at least in third grade and possibly earlier.

Here is just one sequence that I can read to you, it talks about him being verbally abusive, aggressive with much talk about violence in sex. That's when he was in third grade. He was about eight years old.

We talked to a former classmate of his who was with him in fourth and fifth grade, who talked to us about one day when he threatened to bring a gun to school, and kill everyone. He was in fifth grade when that happened.

These documents detail just instance after instance over a period of years when this young man had just incredible disciplinary problems, he was constantly disruptive in class, he had 31 disciplinary situations, Don, between 1992 and 1999.

LEMON: Well, Brian Todd with the latest on that information on the gunman here. Thank you, Brian.

I want to bring in now Florida Senator Bill Nelson. Senator, thank you so much for joining us. Again, I want to talk -- did you sponsor one of those dueling bills that they're talking about. But first of all, I want to say you were with the president today, and you met with the first responders, tell us about that.

BILL NELSON, FLORIDA SENATOR: The President and the Vice President met privately with the families, the first responders, the only two in uniform were the chief of police and the sheriff, and the rest of them were all dressed up in coats and ties, but you could see those muscles rippling under those coats. Those guys are ready to do business. And they obviously took care of business the other day.

LEMON: Yes. As we were talking before going on the air you said you saw one of the guys who fought back against that gunman in the nightclub and off-duty officer, and tell us what you saw about his injuries.

NELSON: No. He had a scar about that long from there to there with the stitches still in it. But it was that Kevlar helmet that stopped that point 223 magnum that has a exceptional military velocity. And he is just very fortunate. He had his Kevlar helmet on.

LEMON: And it just shows you to know how brave our first responders...


NELSON: That's right. That's right.

LEMON: ... and the police officers are in this country. The president also talked after meeting with the families about someone who is on the no-fly list not being able to get their hands on a gun, do you think that that has any chance of passage now?

NELSON: Well, it should. It's common sense. If you're on a terrorist, you shouldn't be able to buy a gun. We let people by the way, on a terrorist list get on an airplane, so why do we want to let him buy a gun.

Now, if the law were just that, it still wouldn't have stopped Mateen.

LEMON: Right.

NELSON: So, what I...


LEMON: That's why you've sponsored that particular...

(CROSSTALK) NELSON: added was the part, that if he's been on a terrorist list before, but it's closed, when he purchases the gun - he can still purchase it - but they've to notify the FBI, so that then if the FBI wants to go to and talk to him again, they can.

LEMON: Do you think it will make a difference this time? Do you think this one will make a difference, because the vote is Monday?

NELSON: The vote is Monday. There is something different, the intensity of this 15-hour filibuster that we did and I was early in the filibuster showing the doctor's blood stained shoes, and then his Facebook post where he talked about as blood is pouring out all over his scrubs and his shoes.

[22:10:04] He doesn't know if they are black or white, gay or straight, he and his team are just trying to save lives amidst all of the screams and the groans. It was a rather compelling piece.

LEMON: You think -- so you think it has a chance? You think it has a chance, do you have the votes, do you think?

NELSON: None other than Lindsey Graham called me, the republican of South Carolina today, he is introducing a version, now is that because he wants to us go on the republican bill, you know, it doesn't make any difference to me.

If we get to the same thing, and we're talking about exactly what you and I just talked about, you start picking up Lindsey and Susan Collins and maybe you get a few more that are up for election, because you know, 90 percent of their folks are telling them, we want you to do this.


NELSON: It's common sense.

LEMON: I want to also play something, I want you to listen to something, this is Senator John McCain and the comments that he made today concerning this massacre. Listen.


JOHN MCCAIN, ARIZONA SENATOR: Barack Obama is directly responsible for it when he pulled everybody out of Iraq, al Qaeda went to Syria, became ISIS, and ISIS is what it is today. Thanks to Barack Obama's failures, utter failures, by pulling everybody out of Iraq, thinking that conflicts end just because we leave. So the responsibility for it lies with President Barack Obama and his failed policies.


LEMON: So then shortly after that, Senator, he back pedaled a little bit. He release a statement and he also tweeted this, "To clarify, I was referring to President Obama's national security decisions that have led to the rise of ISIL, not to the president himself." Do you think that this criticism is appropriate on the day is visiting the family members of who lost loved ones on this massacre?

NELSON: Well, no, it isn't. But I know John and I love John, and he is a hot and passionate about things. And what he really believes is that we shouldn't have pulled out of Iraq. He said it very in artfully, and he has opened himself up to criticism, but I don't believe he meant it.

LEMON: Well, thank you very much. I appreciate you coming on, and thanks for coming and visiting with those, of course, this is your state. We appreciate it, Senator Nelson.

Just ahead from Orlando, I'm going to talk to the grieving parents of one of the victims. You don't want to miss this interview.


LEMON: Back in Orlando tonight, a city that is grieving. President Barack Obama here today comforting the families of the victims.

Shane Evan Tomlinson was 34 years young, a singer who performed at weddings and clubs, and tonight, I sat with his grieving parents.


LEMON: The president said today that for the family members of the victims that they didn't care about the politics and neither did he surrounding this whole gun issue, because you brought it up. You don't care about the politics, you just want something done?

STEVE TOMLINSON, SHANE EVAN TOMLINSON'S FATHER: Yes, we want something done, we really do. Enough is enough, and as she indicated the whole thing is that my son, he was gunned down in a merciless way with 47 other people.

And the thing to me that I just it's unfathomable to me how we tolerate it, we've become so tolerant of it, we just, you know, every time we've seen to look in the papers or you turn on the TV, there is some horrific situation, and we get all upset about it for a moment, and then we are on the next thing until the next tragedy, and nothing. We don't learn anything from it, nothing.

LEMON: Did the president, and the vice president coming offer any comfort to you at all?

CORLISS TOMLINSON, SHANE EVAN TOMLINSON'S MOTHER: Yes, he tried. I mean, what do you say? What do you say to all of these people in there? There is a room full of people that have lost their loved ones, and yes, he came, and like I said to him, thank you for coming, and being compassionate to this community.

But really, what can you really say? You know. His words is not going to make me feel better, and it's definitely not bringing back my son, so I was just happy that he was showing compassion.

But you sit there and you hear people talking, but you don't know what they are saying, because your mind is focused on when I get home, I have to start making funeral arrangements. And, you know, I'm worried about what church and this, and that, you know, my nightmare hasn't even begun yet.

S. TOMLINSON: I looked to the right, and I saw that there was somebody sitting there, and they had been there, and I felt myself focused more on them than what the president was saying, I mean, I heard what he was saying.

And I heard that he said that there were 15 different times that he had come and had to do this for a group of people in the eight years that he had been president, and I thought that was horrific, just in and of itself.

But one of the things that he did say was that he also goes and he talks to family members of soldiers that have been in war, and they have been become casualties of war. And he said that although it's really hard for him to talk to the parents, he said the soldiers so they signed on, and they knew what they were signing on for.

The victims in the room, and the victims that were the family members, they didn't know what they were signing on for.


C. TOMLINSON: They were dancing.


C. TOMLINSON: Dancing.

S. TOMLINSON: You know, you are going to have some fun. My son, he played, and he gigged that night. He was like he got off from work, and after having a performance, OK, and he was having some fun with his friends, and he decided after leaving the place where he had gigged at that he was going to go over to this other club, and just kind of pass through and see who -- some of the friends that he had there.

LEMON: You wouldn't wish it's on your worst enemy?

C. TOMLINSON: Nobody. Nobody should have to lose a child like this, or lose anybody, and not even a child, I mean, nobody should have to lose a family member this way.

LEMON: Since this happened, and I told you guys this, I have known people who know Shane, and they have been texting me from the moment it happened until now when we started this interview about him. Worried about you guys, trying to help you. He was loved by so many people.

[22:20:03] C. TOMLINSON: Unbelievable. I mean, I never knew Shane knew so many people, because my phone has blown up, and I don't know hardly any of these people.

But that is what I do in the middle of the night, I just read all of these comments, you know, from the people, and Shane, and people like all over the place, state-to-state, you know, different countries, I mean, it's just like, where did you meet these people from? So, he was well loved. He really was well loved.

LEMON: He was an incredible performer, and everyone says his voice was amazing and when he lit up the stage. Tell me about that.

C. TOMLINSON: And he was full of -- full of energy, and he could work a stage. He could really work a stage. He loved to sing, and he started singing at 18 months before he could speak, and he was harmonizing gospel with my mother, he will sang in church, and come home, and Shane would just sing all day. I mean, what little child could remember all of those words, and this was Shane.

LEMON: And you said something that I read, and you said that you -- are you having trouble finding places a churche that will take his body or do the service?

C. TOMLINSON: When this first went down, that was a concern, and I said my son has been in church his whole life, and let me tell you, he loved the lord. And he, no matter what Shane did, he always asked for God's direction.

LEMON: And what was the concern?

C. TOMLINSON: That they wouldn't -- they wouldn't give him a service, because he was gay. Because of how some churches feel about the gay community.

LEMON: You have a lot of questions, I'm sure.


LEMON: And what are your questions?

S. TOMLINSON: What happened? Why it happened? And could it have been avoided? That's what running through my mind. You know, where was Shane at that given point in time, and I mean, I have a plethora of questions that I just, you know, I don't even share with her, because I know that she is -- you know.

C. TOMLINSON: For me, I don't want to know.

LEMON: You don't want to know, why?

C. TOMLINSON: It would hurt me too much. I am already having nightmares thinking how he was gunned down. I don't want to know the specifics of it. And, you know, I don't want to see -- he is gone. He is not coming back.

I don't want to see the autopsy report saying that he was shot 15 times. I don't want to see that. You know, my nightmare is already great. So, I don't want to see that. It is not going to help me.

For me, it's going to make it worse. For him, you know, maybe that will help him heal. But it wouldn't help me. No, because I would just keep picturing him being tortured. LEMON: A mother's worst nightmare.

C. TOMLINSON: Absolutely. Absolutely.

LEMON: Do you think that you -- is there anger towards the person who did it?

C. TOMLINSON: Because of my faith, I'm not going to be angry. I'm not going to just hug him and pour love out on him, but I can love him from a distance, he is gone now himself, but no, I am not angry. Because what is that -- what is that going to do? What is the anger going to do? It's going to eat at me, too.


LEMON: Straight ahead, will this massacre lead Congress to pass new gun legislation? That's next.


LEMON: Here in Orlando today, President Barack Obama said that the families of the victims are pleading with him to do more to stop gun violence.

I want to bring in now Florida Congressman John Mica, and Jeffrey Toobin, CNN senior legal analyst. Thank you both, gentlemen, for joining us.

Congressman Mica, I want to start with you, you're demanding or probing into why Orlando did not receive more grants from the Department of Homeland Security, didn't received more anti-terror grants. Tell me about it.

JOHN MICA, FLORIDA CONGRESSMAN: Well, two years ago, DHS which is charged with assessing the vulnerability to terrorist risks for all of our metropolitan areas put Orlando towards the bottom of the lists being eligible for federal grants to combat terrorism.

The last year, my district changed and came closer to this area. I've been working with Sheriff Demings, and the police chief, to get that restored. We were denied every single time every request by DHS to consider Orlando as having possible terrorist threats and moving us up the scale.

They gave New York $178 million, they gave Los Angeles $68 million, and we got zero. So, I've called for a hearing, and there will be hearings to find out what went wrong in their assessment process.


MICA: It's unfair to this community to have left us hanging.

LEMON: The president today said in his remarks that it's going to take more he believes, in the military. He also brought up the gun issue. I want you to listen to that.


OBAMA: If you have lone wolf attacks like this, hatched in the minds of a disturbed person, then we're going to the have to take different kinds of steps in order to prevent something like this from happening.

[22:30:03] Now those who were killed and injured here were gunned down by a single killer with a powerful assault weapon. The motives of this killer may have been different than the mass shooters in Aurora or Newtown, but the instruments of death were so similar.


LEMON: So, my question is, what is the best way to handle this, because multiple national security experts that I've spoken to that I've had on the air said that these are often terrorists that are homegrown, they're hell bent on harming us, and they're taking advantage of being able to the buy guns.

REP. JOHN MICA, (R) FLORIDA: Well, first of all, this individual was identified at least twice, was interviewed, was on a watch list and taken off a watch list. So, how are you going to prevent that?

Additional legislation may be necessary, but when repeatedly FBI fails, and this is not the first failure. They failed in Boston, they used a pressure cooker there. They failed in San Bernardino, and they failed in Texas, and San Bernardino the guy went to the plumbing store and bought all kinds of plumbing equipment and filled it with explosives and created an arsenal.

We have eight bills right now that the House has passed sitting in the Senate that deal with giving -- deal with giving our law enforcement, our intelligence agencies and others better tools to deal with radical extremists and terrorists.

LEMON: So, you don't think that the gun issue is because of the...


MICA: I think you have to look at the gun issue.

LEMON: Let me tell you what the president said, no matter whether it is, whether it's terrorism, whether it's someone who is just, you know, may have an issue, they all have the same mechanism, it's all -- usually a semiautomatic weapon.

MICA: Well, I went to Paris after Charlie Hebdo. They created an arsenal, France has some of that most extensive bans anywhere in the world, and they created an arsenal that killed 130 people. Look at the Norway killing on the island of the children, Norway has some of the toughest, and they ban everything.

So, we've got to get a handle on a whole bunch of other issues, and go after people who pose a risk, identify them. If they are on a list, certainly we don't want them to have that kind of weaponry.

LEMON: All right. I want to bring in Jeffrey now. So, Jeffrey, Senator Chris Murphy, who, you know, after 14-plus hours of filibustering to get gun control legislation on the table, announced that they now path forward to hold votes in the Senate floor.

Do you that we're seeing a renewed push because terrorists can buy these weapons so easily?

TOOBIN: Well, sure. We're seeing a renewed push, but let's not kid ourselves. The republicans control the House of Representatives. There is never going to be any gun control that passes. Because the Republican Party as an institution is against gun control.

I mean, you know, why can't -- why can anyone buy a semiautomatic weapon? That's not a hunting weapon, why is that for sale? Why should anyone be able to gun without a background check? Those are simple questions, and the Republican Party has answered those questions is that we don't want any regulations of semiautomatic weapons, and we don't want any background checks.

You know, yes, there may be a vote in the Senate on some amendments, but it takes both the Senate and the House, and the House isn't even going to take up those issues.

LEMON: So, do you agree? Do you want -- do you want -- is that true? Do you want no restrictions and no background checks?

MICA: I think -- I think what you want to do is look at the legislation, look at the measures that will truly stop this. This isn't the end. We know that they have hit us here in Orlando, a soft target, we need to be doing our assessments better. And certainly time after time, when FBI has failed to connect the dots we're something wrong.

LEMON: OK. But let me ask you. Do you say...


MICA: So, whether they use a gun, or whether they use a pressure cooker or whether they put together pipe bomb...


LEMON: OK. With all due respect...

MICA: We got to stop those people.

LEMON: You've made that point.

MICA: Yes. What?

LEMON: But more specifically, so, you don't think -- you said that we have to look at ways, you don't think that looking at sensible ways to look at...


MICA: Yes, sensible ways. LEMON: ... which may include some control of certain guns.

MICA: Again, when the watch list -- when the watch list is not working, how are you going to control that individual?

LEMON: But even without a watch list.


TOOBIN: But what about, I mean, wait a second, Don, why is this so complicated...

LEMON: If certain guns weren't available...

TOOBIN: Can I just add...

LEMON: Go ahead. That's what I'm trying to get to. Jeffrey, go ahead.

TOOBIN: And why shouldn't there be a background check before you buy a gun?

MICA: I don't have a problem with the background check.

TOOBIN: You don't? Does your leadership?

[22:35:03] MICA: But what good with it -- again, everybody votes differently, there are 435 members in the House, but some are warranted, some restrictions on some weaponry are warranted, and some weapons should be kept out of the hands of some people.

LEMON: Right.

MICA: We have issues of mental health, we have the whole host of people who may post a risk, and certainly, no one would want to allow a terrorist, a known terrorist to have a weapon. The problem we have is that the lists aren't even good or you can't even get them on the list correctly.


MICA: And I've talked to law enforcement within the last hour who will tell you that.

LEMON: Jeffrey?

TOOBIN: Isn't it unrealistic to expect the FBI to come up with perfect profiles of who might do these sorts of crimes in advance? We have a hard enough time in the criminal justice system convicting people who committed crimes in the past. How is the FBI supposed to predict in advance who is going to commit these crimes?

MICA: Well, first of all, this guy did everything but put up a neon light. I've seen some of the interviewers with his co-workers who said that he did everything except tell them the time and place he would do this. So, they missed up mark, and they missed the mark before. The FBI

director Comey says we're going to have to look at what went wrong, and get it right. It has gotten wrong too many times, the watch list is a mess, that needs to be cleaned up, and you've got to rely on intelligence, intelligence, intelligence, then get back to law enforcement, the local law enforcement.

We had one of the people that this guy dealt with up in my community the other day, and we couldn't get a straight answer, our local law enforcement whether he posed a risk, and my community in panic over that.

I call the Department of Justice, and I get a recording Sunday morning. That's not the way this should work.

LEMON: Yes. So, my -- here's what I don't understand. If you say that there should be ways to prevent this, why can't we look at all ways?

MICA: Absolutely.

LEMON: Why can't there be sensible ways to look at?

MICA: Every way and we should bring...


LEMON: Because no one wants to abolish the Second Amendment. I don't think any...

MICA: No, no, no.

LEMON: I don't think any one is saying that.

MICA: But we do things that make sense that make a difference. So, first, we got to try to identify these folks, some of them are, some of them are embedded, look at San Bernardino, and this guy, but there were many hints, look at Boston, you know, those guys bought pressure cookers, San Bernardino, he went out and bought plumbing supplies and put them together to create an arsenal of bombs.

LEMON: But in this one it was an AR-15.

MICA: Yes.

LEMON: It was a semiautomatic weapon in Aurora that was in their hand, and also in Newtown as well.

MICA: Yes. It was. And he was on the watch list and have been taken off of the watch list.


MICA: So, but you have the watch list that identifies people. Now maybe we should look at extending the period of ineligibility once you are on that the watch list.


TOOBIN: Congressman.

MICA: If we had done that, that is a possible solution. They could have stopped that guy.

LEMON: I think it's a valid argument that we should be able to -- I think it's a valid argument to look at the FBI's action...


MICA: Well, we have to look at -- exactly.

LEMON: But I also think it's a valid argument that we can look at what kinds of guns should be legal to purchase here in America.

MICA: Well, and who should be prohibiting from having what kind.

LEMON: So, should he...

MICA: And if we know that it's a known terrorist, they are on the watch list, no one wants to give those people that kind of weaponry. I mean, the problem that we have now...


TOOBIN: But, I mean, Congressman, you keep talking -- Congressman, you keep saying, if he is known terrorist. If someone is a known terrorist, they should be locked up already. The point is we don't know who is a known terrorist until they have actually committed crimes.

MICA: OK. So, that's the FBI's -- that's the FBI's job.

TOOBIN: They're not -- but the FBI is not...


MICA: That they should have been under additional surveillance, they did fail, not just once, but we're up to at least three times and more, and we have to get this right, because they aren't through with us.

And you can ban all the weapons you want, again, I will give you dozens of examples of -- and I was over in Paris as I said, and I saw the arsenal that was accumulated by those that killed 130 people, and that there before that trying to make certain that our assets, our personnel are protected, and in that instance, they were.

They went to a nightclub where there was an American band and tried to kill the people there.


MICA: In Brussels, they subverted the system, and went to the counter of three American Airlines. But again, when you have -- when the DHA doesn't even assess, and here's our records, a week after week contacting them Orlando still has risks, soft targets.


MICA: We knew that we had soft targets here, and they wouldn't listen to us, they turned us every -- down every time. In my letter to them in January, my last letter to them in last line, "If central Florida became a target it would be a national disaster." It has become a national disaster and we've got to stop them


[22:40:03] LEMON: Yes. And I think, Congressman, I think that you're preaching the choir. I think we all say that they're -- everything can be improved.

MICA: Yes. So, we look at what steps...


MICA: ... that will effective.

LEMON: OK. All right. I think that we should look at all steps.

MICA: I agree with you.

LEMON: And that includes which weapons...


MICA: And we will.

LEMON: ... should be available...

MICA: We should look at.

LEMON: ... to certain people here in the United States.

MICA: Exactly.

LEMON: I'm from -- listen, I'm from sportsman paradise and I've never seen anyone in my family -- listen, and a lot of people -- a lot of people hunt, a lot of people shoot, but I have never seen anyone go hunting with an AR-15.

LEMON: I'm a strong Second Amendment person, but I believe that certain people who pose a risk , particularly a terrorist risks or have other problems that are identified should not be allowed to carry that arm or some other arms.

LEMON: How do you plan on voting next week when it comes to this?

MICA: I haven't seen the bill.

LEMON: To the bill.

MICA: I haven't seen the bill. LEMON: So, you have no idea.

MICA: Yes. As I said, we have passed seven bills dealing with the terrorist threats that are sitting in the Senate, I want the Senate to move those.

LEMON: Thank you.

MICA: We'll get it right.

LEMON: Thank you.

MICA: This is a great country, and a great community. We've had tragedy but people are working together, finding solutions that do make a difference, and we can change this.

LEMON: And you said that your district is now going to be...


MICA: My district is right...

LEMON: Right here.

MICA: Right where you're standing.

LEMON: Which is by Pulse, a gay bar.

MICA: Yes. We have great community, and we have a very diverse community.

LEMON: Since this is going to be part of your district now, do you plan or will you be better now when it comes to the legislation for gay people?

MICA: Well, I am.

LEMON: Your record is not very good.

MICA: I have very good record of both friends, people who are very close to me, who work for me, and you'll find that nobody in the community that works better with that community, the gay community, and also with the Latino community that suffered an incredible loss here that hasn't been talked about.

It's devastating. I came home down from the airport and the first place I passed was a Latino funeral home, and there was a service going on there. It breaks my heart.

LEMON: I've to go. Thank you very much.

MICA: Thank you.

LEMON: I appreciate it. Jeffrey, thank you very much, as well.

Coming up, Senator John McCain blames President Obama for the Orlando massacre. We'll be right back.


LEMON: Back now live here in Orlando where some of the victims who survived the massacre are fighting for their lives.

And I want to bring in Kayleigh McEnany, CNN political commentator and a Trump supporter, Maria Cardona is a democratic strategist and Hillary Clinton supporter, and she's also a super delegate, and Ana Navarro, CNN political commentator.

Good evening to all of you. Ana, Donald Trump held a rally tonight, and said this. Listen.


DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: And you know what? LGBT is starting to like Donald Trump very much lately, I will tell you.


LEMON: Ana, what's your response to that?

ANA NAVARRO, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I, you know, I don't know what LGBT community's support of Donald Trump is, I have not seen the poll numbers, I do think that oftentimes he boasts about having support of folks like Hispanics and others who don't really support him when you look at the polls.

But listen, Don, now I was just listening to your previous segment, and I was thinking to myself, if I was the relative, if I was the loved one or if I was the friend of one of those victims of somebody that's been wounded, of somebody that's been killed, and I was hearing that kind of partisan bickering. I think that I would want to reach into the TV and slap somebody.

Out of respect for those dead, out of respect for those wounded, I think we've got to resist this idea of the back and forth of political, you know, tete-a-tete involving and really push and ask that there be action this time.

We cannot continue seeing tragedy after tragedy, then follow it up by this kind of discussion, this kind or argument that leads to nothing other than more people going into their respectful corners. For the love of God, for respect of the dead, let us do something this time.

LEMON: And speaking to the family members, Ana, to your point, to the family members, and I've spoken to a lot of them, and the reason that I pressed him is that I feel obligated because of those family members, they say that they are tired of the partisan bickering as you said, they just want something done.

And they don't see anything wrong, they all believe in the Second Amendment but they don't see anything wrong with sensible gun legislation, and they don't understand why everything else is on the table, but that is not on the table. What would you like to see done, Ana, and you said solutions, what is it?

NAVARRO: You know what I'd like to see? I'm not a gun expert. I would like to see folks that are experts in this field, the national security people, FBI, folks that are gun experts, gun sales people, people from the NRA get locked into a room until they can come up with something that is a compromise and that can be passed.

I would like to see the laws that are in for -- that are now in the books be enforced. I would like to see communication between different agencies, so that a guy that's been interviewed three times by the FBI can't easily go get a gun. I would like to see sensible people do sensible things, I think that's what all Americans should be demanding right now.

LEMON: Kayleigh, before you respond, Donald Trump reacted to President Obama's statements in Orlando. Let's listen.


TRUMP: I just watched President Obama, and...


... and he does it a lot, he does it a lot, because we have one after another, we have tragedy after tragedy and it's a tough -- it's a tough situation. But he's largely, to a large extent he is blaming guns and...


... and I'm going to save your Second Amendment, folks.


I'm going to save your Second Amendment. Totally. And Hillary wants to abolish the Second Amendment, remember that.


[22:50:06] LEMON: Before I ask a question, in every single fact check that says that he's false on that, that Hillary Clinton has never said or even intimated that she wants to take away the Second Amendment.

How much do you think that the tragedy in Orlando is going to change the gun discussion on the campaign trail?

KAYLEIGH MCENANY, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, you know, I do think that she has intimated that, because she was asked if she agrees with the Supreme Court ruling that basically says the Second Amendment entails a right to actually hold the weapon, it's called the Heller case, and she said, oh, I'm not sure if I agree with that interpretation.

So that I think is debatable. But I do want to say I agree with Ana 100 percent, and I think that we should take partisan politics out of it, and that means budging on the various issues. And Donald Trump, we've seen him say, I want to look into it, and perhaps support, talk with the NRA about making sure that people on the terror watch list do not take guns.


LEMON: OK. Kayleigh, let me say this about...

MCENANY: I think that's reasonable and that is sensible.

LEMON: Let me read this. I want to read the PolitiFact on the Heller decision, OK? So, it says talking about Hillary Clinton and what you just said that she intimated that. "This suggests that Clinton disagrees. Clinton, she states that she would have the power to craft commonsense laws and keep their residents safe."

"That citizen state should have common -- the power of common, the power to craft commonsense laws to keep their residence safe. That's what she said. This suggests, according to the PolitiFact that Clinton disagrees with the court declaring that district ban on handguns unconstitutional, not necessarily the individual right itself."

"A position that is more or less in line with what George W. Bush, that administration position was on Heller, of recognizing the right, but allowing reasonable curtailment."

"So, here's what they say, that for this claim to hold water to support the Second Amendment, the Second Amendment abolishment that needs to be more direct so they rated it false, and they rate Donald Trump's statement false about Hillary Clinton wanting to destroy the Second Amendment and using the Heller decision as proof that she wants to destroy the Second Amendment is just completely false."

MCENANY: Hillary Clinton, it is absolutely fair to question whether she supports the individual constitutional right to hold a weapon if she wants to call into question the Supreme Court's jurisprudence on Heller.

I think that's a very fair way to say it, does she want to abolish it, does she not support the individual right to have an arm. It doesn't matter. That is semantics at that point. She is not a staunch Second Amendment to center, but I really don't think that's the point now, Don, because the media is trying desperately to make this about guns, this is about Islamic terrorism...


LEMON: No, the media is not trying to make this about guns.

MCENANY: Yes, you are.

LEMON: Kayleigh -- Kalyeigh.

MCENANY: Yes, they are.

LEMON: The media is not trying to make this about guns.

MCENANY: Because we're having...

LEMON: I'm speaking for the family members who I've been sitting down with since Sunday who are upset. Some are republicans, some are democrats, some are republicans, some -- all of them say that they believe in the Second Amendment, but they're tired of this partisan bickering, as Ana says, about the Second Amendment.

Donald Trump says that every turn that Hillary Clinton wants to abolish the Second Amendment, and if that is a lie, then we are obligated to point it out. It is not true, and you should not come on national television saying it's true when it is not. That is who is making this a partisan thing.


LEMON: Bringing it up is Donald Trump not the media.

MCENANY: No, because here is the thing. Here is the thing. We are talking this entire segment is about guns. Donald Trump is the one candidate out there who has budged and said, hey, my party needs to come around on this. Where is Barack Obama and where is the segment talking about Islamic extremism, because we can abolish guns like France did, basically that assault weapons banned.

But the last four terrorist attacks have all occurred despite assault weapons being banned under French law, they've all occurred with assault weapons. So, we can talk about guns.

But that is doing an injustice to the families. We can talk about guns, we need to make changes there but by ignoring Islamic extremism, this will happen again, we will have this discussion again, and it is doing a complete injustice to them to ignore the root of the problem.


LEMON: No one is ignoring extremism. The whole -- our whole show has been about Islamic extremism. Go ahead, Maria.

CARDONA: Don, and this is exactly why we can't have a sensible conversation about this, because even when confronted with the facts, Trump and his supporters ignore them as if they don't exist.

And so, as long as you have that kind of mentality, when you have leaders, the standard bearer of the Republican Party essentially continuing to underscore outright lies, then it is hard to have a sensible conversation.

But the fact to the matter is that majority of Americans are demanding a sensible conversation, and sensible changes to ensure that people who should not have guns are notable to acquire guns.

[22:54:57] Republicans are starting to come around on this, because I think they realize, and again, in deference to the families, because like you said, and I have seen these interviews with you, Don, they are demanding this kind of sensible exchange of sensible changes to the gun laws to make sure that gun safety is put first. That does not mean that anybody wants to get rid of the Second

Amendment, it does mean that sensible changes can be made so that this, so that it's harder for this kind of thing to happen again.

LEMON: Ana, I am almost out of time, I'll give you the last word?

NAVARRO: Look, I think that this is part of the problem, and when I hear folks talk about Islamic extremism, yes, that is part of the problem. When you have this guy who called and allied himself pledged allegiance to ISIS, that's good for me to consider him extremist that was allied with ISIS.

Now at the same time if you are going to talk about Islamic extremism, you also have to say that this was a hate crime against the LGBT community, both things are true, both things can be simultaneously true.

And I think that we cannot blind ourselves to the facts, because of personal discrimination because of personal bias. Both things are true, and unless we get a comprehensive approach to the problem, we are not going to solve it.

LEMON: All right. Thank you, everyone. We'll be right back.