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EARLY START

Trump Attacks GOP Senator Who Hits Back Hard; White House Lays Out DACA Deal; Pence Leaves Colts Game After Protest During Anthem; Board Fires Harvey Weinstein Amid Scandal. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired October 9, 2017 - 05:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[05:30:00] CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: And the vice president accused of a big

political stunt. He left a football game after players took a knee. Was it predictable, and who's paying for Pence's brief and costly trip?

Welcome back to EARLY START. I'm Christine Romans.

BRIGGS: I'm Dave Briggs.

And, Jerry Jones says the Cowboys will stand or they will not play.

ROMANS: Yes.

BRIGGS: It is 30 minutes past the hour.

We start with this extraordinary Twitter feud between a respected Republican senator and the president, capping off an extraordinary volley of personal insults with influential Republican Sen. Bob Corker, going much further than any Republican has, to date, with criticism of the president.

In an interview Sunday with "The New York Times," the chairman of the very influential Senate Foreign Relations Committee accused President Trump of treating his office like a reality show with reckless threats that could set America on the path to World War III.

Corker said he is alarmed by a president who acts quote "Like he's doing 'The Apprentice' or something." And, telling the "Times" he concerns me and would have to concern anyone who cares about our nation.

ROMANS: The verbal combat escalating Sunday when the president launched a Twitter tirade against Corker.

Trump tweeted the retiring Republican senator doesn't have the guts to run again. Trump said he denied Corker's request for an endorsement. That's false, a claim denied by Corker's chief of staff.

Corker punched back tweeting, "It's a shame the White House has become an adult day care center. Someone obviously missed their shift this morning."

The trouble between the senator and the president has been brewing for weeks now underscored by this remark from Corker last week.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. BOB CORKER (R-TN), CHAIRMAN, SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE: I think Sec. Tillerson, Sec. Mattis, and Chief of Staff Kelly are those people that help separate our country from chaos.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: This all on the heels of Corker, three weeks ago, questioning the president's stability and competence after he assigned blame for the violence in Charlottesville to both sides.

Senator Corker's vote critical for many of the president's legislative goals, including tax reform, foreign policy challenges, like the Iran nuclear deal. And if, for some example, the president lets go of Rex Tillerson, that committee -- the Senate Foreign Relations Committee would lead confirmation of a new secretary of state.

ROMANS: If the president were to let him go or he were to walk away.

BRIGGS: That could also happen.

ROMANS: All right. Joining us now, "Washington Post" political reporter and CNN alum, and a good friend of this program --

EUGENE SCOTT, POLITICAL REPORTER, WASHINGTON POST: Yes.

ROMANS: -- Eugene Scott. We love him on Mondays.

SCOTT: Morning.

ROMANS: Good morning, good morning.

SCOTT: Morning.

ROMANS: Let's talk about this Corker interview in "The New York Times." I mean, I think everyone should read it. It was a 25-minute interview where the "Times" reporters say he was forceful, he chose his words carefully, and he was unrelenting in his criticism of this president, saying this president is dangerous for America.

SCOTT: Absolutely, and I think it's really important for context.

We have Dave just mentioned that Corker was criticizing President Trump previously in response to the president's original words about Charlottesville. There were protests in Charlottesville this weekend against people who have problems with Confederate memorials remaining in place. And the president chose, instead, to focus on the NFL and what players were doing in response to their concerns about racism in America.

What we saw is Corker just express his continued frustration with the president's inability to address issues in a way that Corker and the Republican Party think are actually in the best interest of America and specifically, in the areas of foreign policy. BRIGGS: Let's go back even further because Trump supporters are used to people saying things about him and they dismiss them as Never Trumpers.

Bob Corker was a supporter of the candidate, was a supporter of the president, was on the short list for vice president, was on the short list for secretary of state. He is not, nor never has been --

SCOTT: Right.

BRIGGS: -- a Never Trumper.

What are the political implications of all of this? Will he just be one voice?

SCOTT: Well, Corker seems to believe that there are many Republicans in Congress who actually agree with him and who see things the way that the does. I think your point is important.

Corker actually came on the campaign to be a bit of a foreign policy adviser so it's not like he has these issues with Trump that aren't based on fact or experience or knowledge. He spent time with the top officials in the administration and is able to assess deficiencies up front in a way that makes him very difficult to dismiss.

But the president's really aware of his base on the issues that matter most to them and that's why he appeals to them, such as tweeting things about the NFL to keep them on board when he fears that they could be paying more attention to Corker than himself.

ROMANS: Let's talk about North Korea because I think this dovetails nicely, or not so nicely into what we're talking about here with Sen. Corker.

[05:35:02] The president, this weekend, tweeting about North Korea. He said this.

"Presidents and their administrations have been talking to North Korea for 25 years. Agreements made, massive amount of money paid, hasn't worked. Agreements violated before the ink was dry making fools -- makings fools of U.S. negotiators. Sorry, but only one thing will work."

And then reporters obviously asked him what are you talking about?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REPORTER: What's the one thing that will work with North Korea?

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, you'll figure that out pretty soon.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: OK. This is sort of vintage Trump, you know.

SCOTT: Sure.

ROMANS: You know, he tries to tease the next thing. You know, he feels -- some presidents when they go out there, you know, and the cameras are there, they don't say anything. They just smile, they wave.

SCOTT: Yes.

ROMANS: But the president likes to talk to the press. Then he offers this mystery. What do we make of this?

SCOTT: Well, if we're paying attention to Corker, Corker's fearful that there could be World War III because of the erratic actions and the lack of discipline and analysis coming from the White House, at least from the Oval Office, specifically.

This is a very serious issue, one that has caused a challenge for Rex Tillerson and John Kelly in the White House regarding how we respond to North Korea. And that is, I think, what's most important to get out of the conflict between Corker and Trump.

This is just not people battling over something insignificant. There's some philosophical differences about how we respond to crises around the world that have made Corker speak out, out of frustration and out of fear.

BRIGGS: All right. You mentioned earlier the president's continued focus on the take a knee protests. The vice president really stoking this one right back up on Sunday, leaving the Colts-Niners game after members of the Niners took a knee, even though all the Colts did stand up for the anthem.

Now, a couple of issues popping up after this. One is the cost of this trip from the left coast all the way back to the Colts game, and then he's going to head back out there. So, $242,000, which was made an issue by Brian Schatz, by Rep. Adam Schiff, as well.

But then there's the question, Eugene, of this, is it a manufactured stunt? Do they find this as an issue that works for them because Pence tweeted about siding with the troops? And to be clear, whether you agree with this protest or not, these NFL players do not side against the troops.

SCOTT: Right.

BRIGGS: They're talking about police brutality and racial injustice.

SCOTT: Right.

BRIGGS: Is this a winning issue for the White House?

SCOTT: It's certainly a winning issue with his base. The reality is people who already on the Trump train view this issue in a way very similarly to the president.

But the reality is, when you look at other demographics in America and when you look at the America besides the Trump base, there are people, including some veterans, who seem to understand that racism is an issue in America and that attention needs to be paid to it, and that veterans shouldn't be pitted against people of color --

ROMANS: Yes.

SCOTT: -- for wanting more attention paid to this issue.

I think it's very important also to remember that the Trump campaign allegedly campaigned on the economic anxiety concerns of its base.

I don't know how you make an argument that flying from Vegas to Indianapolis back to California for a few minutes of a football game that you don't even stay the whole time for is in the best economic interest of America.

ROMANS: Let's talk about what happened last night while we were sleeping, folks. The president and the White House rolling out its demands for a deal with Democrats on those Dreamers -- on keeping DACA alive which would essentially keep legalized limbo for the children who came here as minors illegally.

This is what the White House wants in exchange.

Stopping unaccompanied minors entering illegally. They want funding for President Trump's border wall, targeting visa overstays, removing undocumented immigrations. And also, ending sort of what's called chain migration where a family member can get a pathway to citizenship or a legalized status because somebody is already here.

This is not going to fly with Democrats. They've already said it's not going to fly. Maybe it's a negotiating tactic though for the president. Put everything out there -- very strict -- everything he wants out there and then peels back from there.

SCOTT: Well, certainly. I mean, I think that is what some Democrats are hoping -- that these aren't non-negotiable items, but they are non-negotiable to many people in Trump's space. And the reality is when he sat down with the Democrats it made him lose some support from some people who felt like he was working with the enemy or the other side on a very important issue.

The reality is Trump has to sit down with the Democrats because as we've seen at the top of this segment he has issues with some Republicans, and key Republicans on this issue including immigration. But I don't think the Democrats are going to give on the border wall and I think Trump knows that.

BRIGGS: All right. Eugene Scott from the "Washington Post," thank you, sir. Appreciate it. Good to see you.

SCOTT: See you, sir.

ROMANS: Have a great week.

SCOTT: Take care. ROMANS: Nice to see you on a Monday. It's always good to (INAUDIBLE).

BRIGGS: No doubt.

ROMANS: All right. It is Monday so let's talk money here and Obamacare.

President Trump is rolling back some Obamacare rules, once again undermining how the law is carried out. "The Wall Street Journal" reporting the president is expected to sign an executive order this week to provide consumers more insurance option.

[05:40:08] It will allow some Americans to buy insurance through association health plans. These are particularly, people who buy their own coverage. These plans will also have weaker protections in the Obamacare plans.

The administration says association health plans will help lower premiums. Of course, high costs are a frequent GOP complaint about Obamacare. But the insurance industry says these plans will actually raise prices by removing healthy consumers from the market, further increasing costs for older, sicker Americans, something the AARP and others have been very concerned about.

This would abolish a rule preventing the sale of short-term medical insurance as well, and expand health reimbursement accounts. It's also one of the most concrete steps the White House has taken since the failure of the Obamacare repeal.

But remember, the president cannot, alone, overturn the law. That's still the work of Congress.

A lot of folks watching what happens with the president, with HHS. Will they help Obamacare implode or will they help states and insurers try to find ways to protect people?

BRIGGS: Yes. Will Lamar Alexander and Patty Murray do something to help, you know, fund these exchanges.

ROMANS: A bipartisan approach, right.

BRIGGS: All right. We shall see.

Media mogul Harvey Weinstein, meanwhile, has been fired by the company he co-founded in the wake of sexual harassment accusations. More on this rapid and massive downfall, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:45:40] ROMANS: In a rapid fall from grace, media mogul Harvey Weinstein has been fired from the film company he co-founded.

It comes days after a "New York Times" investigation revealed incidents of alleged sexual harassment spanning decades. The board of directors at the Weinstein Company released a statement saying the decision was made in light of new information about his misconduct.

Some clients have said they may stop working with the company if Weinstein is still associated with it.

So far, no immediate comment from Weinstein.

BRIGGS: The bright lights that are the trademark of Las Vegas dimmed last night for 11 minutes to honor the victims and the heroes of last week's tragic mass murder. Many of the strip's flashing lights went dark at 10:05 local time, exactly one week to the minute after those shots rang out.

ROMANS: As for the investigation, police now believe they know the significance of that note -- handwritten note with numbers on it found in the shooter's room. Officials say the numbers are calculations for the distance and trajectory from the gunman's 32nd-floor window to the audience at the country music country he was targeting below.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAVID NEWTOWN, POLICE OFFICER, LAS VEGAS POLICE DEPARTMENT: He must have done the calculations or gone online or something to figure it out of what his altitude was going to be, on how high up he was, how far out the crowd was going to be, and what it -- at that distance what his drop of his bullet was going to be.

He hadn't written out the calculations. All he had was written out the final numbers.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: Fascinating interview last night on "60 MINUTES." Police still trying to work out the gunman's motive. Again, searched his home in Mesquite, Nevada, east of Las Vegas.

Over the weekend, officials released some of the personal effects left behind in the chaos of the attack and began returning them to their rightful owners.

ROMANS: All right. Country music star Jason Aldean, who was performing in Las Vegas at the time of the attack, he tried to find some healing this weekend on "SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JASON ALDEAN, COUNTRY MUSIC STAR: (Singing "I Won't Back Down" in honor of Tom Petty and Las Vegas victims and heroes).

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Aldean opened "SNL" with a rendition of Tom Petty's hit song "I Won't Back Down." Petty's death last week largely overshadowed by the Las Vegas massacre.

While on stage, Aldean gave an emotional tribute to the victims.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ALDEAN: We hurt for you and we hurt with you. But you can be sure that we're going to walk through these tough times together, every step of the way, because when America is at its best our bond and our spirit, it's unbreakable.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Aldean flew back to Nevada Sunday, visiting the University Medical Center to sit with victims of the shooting.

BRIGGS: I say if you weren't a fan before of Jason Aldean you ought to be now. What a performance and an awesome guy.

All right, time for a look at what's coming up on "NEW DAY" as Alisyn Camerota joins us this morning.

ROMANS: Hi, Aly.

BRIGGS: Good morning, my friend.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Hi, guys. Happy Monday. Great to see you.

So, obviously, we'll be talking about where the tension with Sen. Bob Corker and President Trump goes from here.

Who are the president's allies that he has left around him? What does this mean for legislation? Does it mean that other leaders will begin speaking out or speaking, at least, their minds about the president?

So we have an all-star list of analysts for you. We have Bill Kristol, we have John Avlon, we have Karoun Demirjian, we have Michael Smerconish. We're also, later in the program, going to have Congressman Sean Duffy on for what he thinks this means for the Republican Party.

And then, look who's in for Chris this morning. We have Bill Weir making a special cameo --

ROMANS: Oh.

CAMEROTA: -- right over here.

ROMANS: Hi, Bill.

BILL WEIR, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning.

ROMANS: How are you?

BRIGGS: Good morning, Bill.

WEIR: I'm good, I'm good.

ROMANS: All right.

CAMEROTA: I like to bring it on.

BRIGGS: He's been a world traveler in recent times.

CAMEROTA: Yes, yes. He's back on terra firma here. Hi.

WEIR: You're a real person.

CAMEROTA: Great to see you.

WEIR: I've seen you on T.V.

CAMEROTA: Yes. This is going to be fun.

ROMANS: All right. Have fun, guys.

CAMEROTA: We'll see you at the top of the hour.

ROMANS: We'll see you in a few minutes. Thank you.

BRIGGS: From "THE WONDER LIST" to wandering onto our set.

All right, good stuff.

ROMANS: All right. Big banks and big profits. Five American banks should report record numbers this week. Making money in the banking industry.

Details on "CNN Money Stream," next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:54:18] BRIGGS: President Trump, again, touts his own response to the hurricane in Puerto Rico. He tweeted quote, "Nobody could have done what I've done for Puerto Rico with so little appreciation. So much work!"

All that work and there's still plenty to be done.

CNN's Layla Santiago has more from San Juan.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

LEYLA SANTIAGO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Christine and Dave, there's still very much a sense of desperation on the island.

Hospitals telling us that they are operating on a day-by-day basis. Two and a half weeks after the storm they are having problems finding what they need. We're talking about water, diesel for the generator.

As a matter of fact, when we visited one hospital in Caguas, we noticed FEMA stopped by but only to assess their needs. The only delivery we saw was diesel. Another delivery the hospital scheduled and paid for.

[05:55:10] Workers told me it was going to last them just a day and a half. As a matter of fact, earlier this week, patients had to be evacuated to the U.S. Navy ship Comfort because of a generator failure. And a doctor of one of those patients told me the person was connected to a ventilator. That's why it was so important to get more help.

Do you think you'll get that help?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We hope so.

SANTIAGO: Do you need the help?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

SANTIAGO: And because hospitals are struggling, many who are already sick, already vulnerable, are trying to get off the island.

I met an 8-year-old boy named Diego and he has a rare disorder. His mother has really been struggling to find the medications that he needs to stay alive. And thankfully, through the help of some private donors, the family was able to take a charter flight to Florida.

But there's still so many others in similar situations not so lucky -- Christine, Dave.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ROMANS: Leyla Santiago -- great work from her. Thank you so much.

A weary, exhausted and drenched southeast hit again with a category one hurricane. The storm made landfall in southeast Louisiana Saturday causing destruction and flooding. Hurricane Nate made a second landfall near Biloxi, Mississippi hours later. And then you can see these pictures, swamping Mobile, Alabama.

BRIGGS: Nate knocked out power to at least 67,000 homes, most of them in Alabama. No deaths or injuries reported in the U.S. though dozens were killed in Central America.

Nate now a tropical depression dragging its rain northeastward. The National Hurricane Center has discontinued all warnings and advisories as Nate loses steam.

Eight weeks, though, still left in hurricane season. Let's hope that is all for the Gulf Coast.

Meanwhile, in northern California this morning, several huge wildfires are burning out of control. The blazes in Napa and Sonoma counties fanned by strong, dry northeast winds prompting the evacuations of neighborhoods and at least one wine country resort.

No immediate information available on damage or possible injuries but officials and witnesses say there are structures burning in both counties.

ROMANS: Let's get a check on "CNN Money Stream" this Monday morning. Global stock markets mostly higher right now. Wall Street broke its record run on a weak jobs reports Friday. The S&P 500 and the Dow closed lower snapping that longest record streak since 1997.

The U.S. lost 33,000 jobs in September. That is the first monthly decline in seven years. You can blame Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

It was a mixed report, though. The unemployment rate fell and wage growth was the highest in eight years.

This week, get ready for some big money for bank earnings. Five banks expected to report $21 billion in profits. JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, PNC all report this week. Combined, their profits make up nearly half of the entire banking industry.

Their profitability could only grow under the Trump administration because of corporate tax reform and deregulations. But huge profits undercut the administration's argument that regulations have hurt the banking industry. They are making record amounts of money.

Dove apologizing for this racially insensitive ad, saying it missed the mark in representing black women. This ad was a three-second bit hawking Dove Body Wash posted on Facebook. The looping image shows a black woman removing a dark brown t-shirt to reveal a white woman.

It caused immediate outcry on social media. They took it down quickly. Dove removed it, saying in a statement that it doesn't represent the diversity of real beauty, which is something Dove is passionate about.

You can see it missed the mark, Dove said. A lot of folks immediately saying exactly what was your mark because that was really tasteless.

BRIGGS: Yes. They say the intended to celebrate diversity.

ROMANS: All right. Thanks for joining us.

BRIGGS: All right.

ROMANS: I'm Christine Romans.

BRIGGS: I'm Dave Briggs.

An influential Republican senator says the president's actions could put the U.S. on course for World War III.

"NEW DAY" starts right now.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SCOTT: I'm sure Corker is not going to forget the insults that Trump leveled at him.

ROMANS: Corker accusing the president of running the White House like a reality show.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People in private say this all the time and things much worse than that.

BRIGGS: President Trump possibly scuttling the bipartisan effort to protect Dreamers with a hardline list of demands.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is very hard for Democrats to say yes to.

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D), MASSACHUSETTS: America made a promise to our Dreamers. America should keep its promises.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And the 97-page deposition obtained exclusively by CNN gives us fresh insight into his mind four years before the shooting.

NEWTON: He had that written down and figured out where to shoot his targets from there.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So no clear idea why he did this and that is very frustrating to investigators.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.

CAMEROTA: We want to welcome our viewers in the United States and around the world. This is NEW DAY.