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Bronx Apartment Fire; New York Ramps up Security; Trump Comments on Amazon; Tax Reform Fuels Market Boost; Trump Voters Thoughts on Russia Probe; Trump Talks 2020 Win. Aired 9:30-10a

Aired December 29, 2017 - 09:30   ET


[09:33:16] POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: Twelve people are dead, including three children under the age of 10. This happened because of a fire that raced through a Bronx apartment building here in New York City. Several more are injured, including some of the firefighters.

Listen to the first responders as they race to the scene.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Giving us a baby, apartment 13. Baby trapped. People trapped. Apartment 13. We're getting a baby in there. Also apartment 6, people trapped.


HARLOW: Our correspondent Scott McLean is with us from the Bronx.

First of all, what do we know about some of those trapped -- trapped infants? Did they get them out? And also the cause of this fire?

SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, so, first, Poppy, about the cause of this fire. Firefighters have yet to pin that down, but they are still on scene. They have been here since those flames first broke out shortly before 7:00 last night on the first floor of the building, which could explain, perhaps, why this fire was so deadly.

According to public records, we know the building had 29 suites inside. There were only four complaints against it, though, since 2004. None of those appear to be fire-related. But there were also six open violations registered with another city department, one of them over a broken smoke detector, another broken carbon monoxide detector. Both of those on the first floor, again, where those fire broke out.

We have reached out to at least one of the building owners. We have so far not been able to reach them for comment.

The mayor was also asked about those violations on "NEW DAY " this morning. Here's what he said.


MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), NEW YORK: Well, the building owner, building management is supposed to make sure that all those basic safety precautions are in place. And this is an older build. I believe it's over 100 years old. But it's still -- they are liable to make sure the basic safety elements are in place.

[09:35:06] But we should not speculate yet. We have the best fire department in the world. They are very expert at investing to figure out what the cause of a fire is. We need to give them a little time to work through this.


MCLEAN: And that fire department managed to rescue 12 people from inside the building, Poppy. But the mayor also stressed that the -- there could still be more deaths from this fire because there are four people in the hospital who are fighting for their lives right now in critical condition.

What we know about those who died also is that they range in age from a one-year-old baby to a 63-year-old woman. Four of them were children. At least three, Poppy, were under the age of ten.

One other thing, the fire department, it is setting up for a press conference at the top of the hour, so we might get more clarity on some of those violations and what, if anything, they've found so far that might be the cause of this fire.

HARLOW: It's heartbreaking.

Scott, appreciate the reporting this morning. Our thoughts with all of those families.

Also, cities across the country increasing security ahead of New Year's Eve celebration. Las Vegas is adding snipers to rooftops, bringing in the National Guard to protect crowds. Here in New York City, they've got police already setting up those barricades, patrolling tourist attractions and hotels before the iconic ball drop.

Athena Jones is live in Times Square.

Just to be clear, there is no sort of credible threat at this time, right? This is all just about an abundance of caution?

ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Poppy. That's exactly right. Authorities say there is no direct, credible threat to the New Year's Eve celebration here in New York or to New York City in general. This is out of an abundance of caution.

Security this celebration is always a massive security undertaking. This year there's going to be an increased police presence, and that's in part because of the two recent terror attacks right here in New York. The one that -- the truck incident in lower Manhattan on Halloween that killed eight people. And then just earlier this month when that man tried to detonate -- or detonated a bomb in the subway system. That is one of the reasons you're going to see an increased police presence.

The area I'm standing in right now is going to be blocked down to traffic starting early in the day on Sunday. There are going to be 12 access points for spectators. They are going to see teams of police officers, officers with heavy weapons. There will be bomb-sniffing dogs. Officers will have equipment that can detect radiological material. There will be metal detectors. There will also be sanitation trucks filled with sand and cement blocks to help make sure that they can thwart any sort of vehicle attack. And there is going to be a series of additional measures, including counter-snipers teams on rooftops, officers patrolling hotels. And despite the fact that there is no credible threat, authorities say for the 2 million people expected to come out, remain vigilant. And, as always, if you see something, say something.


HARLOW: Indeed.

Athena Jones, thank you very much for the reporting from Times Square, where there will be a great celebration on Sunday night with these two gents live from Times Square. Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen host CNN's New Year's Eve special. It starts at 8:00 a.m. Eastern right here on CNN.

So the president tweets this morning about Amazon, the stock down 6 percent at the open. Why? Next.


[09:42:05] HARLOW: The markets have just opened on the final trading day of a record-breaking year. One tech stock taking a bit of a hit this morning after a presidential tweet.

Alison Kosik is here with more.

So, Amazon?


So the president tweeted about Amazon, and there you go, Amazon makes a u-turn from positive to negative. It looks like Fox had some sort of segment about Amazon, about trends in 2018, but if you look at Trump's random tweet, it actually encourages the post office to raise prices. It may be for a different reason, to hurt the bottom line of Amazon's CEO, Jeff Bezos, who also owns "The Washington Post." Clearly the president has been critical of the media and been critical of "The Washington Post," Poppy.

HARLOW: Indeed. So we'll have to get more information on why that tweet. Overall, though, this has been a banner year for the stock market.

KOSIK: Yes, there were dozens. There were. There were dozens of impressive milestones reached in the stock market this year. Most of these, though, are psychological markers that exemplify the explosive growth that we've seen in stocks over the past year.

You look at the blue chips, they first hit 20,000 on January 6th. Just 24 trading sessions later, the Dow hit 21,000. Early August, 22,000. October, 23,000. And just 30 days after that, 24,000.

Some stocks that we've been watching that have helped to move the Dow up this year, Boeing. Boeing shares up 90 percent. Caterpillar, up 70 percent. Apple shares up 47 percent.

But this is just the Dow. The Dow is only 30 stocks. You look at the S&P 500, it's a broader measure of the market, it's up 20 percent for the year. And the index itself has seen dozens of record closing highs just this year.

As for the Nasdaq, not too shabby. It's had its own headlines. Tech stocks have fueled the index to a record year. We're going to watch the Nasdaq because if it closes higher today, it will have 11 out of 12 months of gains in 2017. That's actually a first.

Investors that I've been talking to say a big reason that we've seen the momentum in the stock market is the anticipation and now passage of tax reform and regulatory rollbacks. The business world, of course, benefits from cutting taxes and from cutting regulations.

The remarkable rise in the market is something that we know that the president touts regularly. He tweeted this about a week ago. The stock market is setting record after record and unemployment at a 17-year low. So many things accomplished by the Trump administration, perhaps more than any other president in the first year. Sadly, will never be reported correctly by the fake news media.

I don't know who he's talking about, Poppy. It can't be us. We're not the fake news media because I'm sitting here reporting about it.


HARLOW: Alison Kosik, appreciate it. Thank you very much.

KOSIK: You got it.

HARLOW: While the president likes to talk up the markets, he is tamping down the Russia investigation, saying it makes the U.S. look bad to the rest of the world. That's part of a brand new "New York Times" interview the president gave. He also said in that interview that Special Counsel Bob Mueller he thinks will treat him fairly in the investigation. But what does his base think? What do Trump voters think?

[09:45:06] I went to Michigan and Kentucky and asked them.


HARLOW: Do you have any concerns about alleged ties between the Russian government and the Trump campaign?

SAL MOCERI, MICHIGAN TRUMP VOTER: I -- I just don't give a rat's (EXPLETIVE DELETED) about that (EXPLETIVE DELETED), OK. It's done. You can understand -- there's nothing we can do to change it. You can investigate all you want, and it's done, OK, let's just move on with the real problems of the world. HARLOW: There have been some indictments. The president calls it fake

news. What do you say?

LARRY PHILLIPS, KENTUCKY TRUMP VOTER: Well, there have been stuff like that went on since the beginning of time. You know that and I do, too.

HARLOW: But does it bother you? Do you want answers?

PHILLIPS: The only thing about it, we've got more people who are digging. We've got people who's a digging just trying to find anything. It's happened in the past and --

HARLOW: But doesn't it bother you that Russia interfered in our election?

PHILLIPS: Well, I got what I wanted, so, no, it didn't bother me.

HARLOW: Really?

PHILLIPS: Well, they -- they didn't need to be doing that. But, anyway, I got what I wanted, so I -- I'm still --

HARLOW: Do you -- do -- do you think --

PHILLIPS: What did it do? What harm did they do? What harm did they do? They -- hey, I can tell you a bunch of lies --

HARLOW: Dis-information.

PHILLIPS: But when it comes down, you make your own mind up on what you want.

HARLOW: So do you think the investigation should even be going on?

PHILLIPS: Well, I think we're wasting a lot of time at we -- that can be spent on something more worthwhile.

HARLOW: Would you have a different opinion if Hillary Clinton won and you didn't get the outcome you wanted?

PHILLIPS: Well, no. I think if Hillary got it, I don't think they should have been on her back either.

HARLOW: Do you wish the president will call Russia out more?


HARLOW: So you have no concerns about the investigation into potential Russia ties to this presidency?

DEHENAU: No, and I'm going to -- I'm going to tell you why. Because after almost a year of investigation, after, you know, millions and millions upon millions of dollars of taxpayer money spent, the only evidence that has even come up is really against the Democratic candidate.

HARLOW: No, Manafort just got indicted. Rick Gates got indicted. Two people very close to the president.

DEHENAU: Well, things happened. You know what, if you start turning over stones, yes, you're going to find things.

HARLOW: No, but you're wrong. I mean they just got indicted.

DEHENAU: Politics is a dirty business. I'm saying that if you start turning over rocks, you're going to find things.

HARLOW: Do you have concerns about that, the contacts between people on the campaign and Russian officials? Does it bother you?

LEIGHANDRA SHOUSE, KENTUCKY TRUMP VOTER: It bothers me to the extent that I want them to get it done. I want -- and I don't care if it's Republicans. I don't care if it's Hillary Clinton. I don't care if it's Donald Trump. You know, whoever is behind all this stuff, we need to get them -- get it found out and move on. We need to go forward.

HARLOW: But are you glad they're investigating? Do you think --

L. SHOUSE: Absolutely. And whoever's guilty, take them out. Get them. Go, you know. Let's move on.

HARLOW: Regardless of party?

L. SHOUSE: I don't care who it is, you know, I don't care.

HAROLD SHOUSE, KENTUCKY TRUMP VOTER: If they're guilty, they're guilty. Go on.

HARLOW: Would you like to see the president call out Russia more? Call out Vladimir Putin? Condemn the election meddling?

PEGGY STEWART, MICHIGAN TRUMP VOTER: Yes, but there is an investigation going, so he might not be able to talk about it too much right now.

HARLOW: He talks about it. He talks about the investigation.

STEWART: Then again, he sees it as allegations, like it is.

HARLOW: Is there anything the president could do to lose your vote?

STEWART: Have bonafide proof that he has allowed Russia to come in and interfere with the election so that he would win against Hillary. That would very well upset me because I am a staunch believer of what he's doing and that would really hurt my feelings.


STEWART: I'd fell really stupid after that.


HARLOW: My thanks to all those voters in Michigan and Kentucky for talking to us. All right, in a new interview, the president says the media, the media will let him win the 2020 election, as if it were up to the media. We're going to dive into what he said exactly, next.


[09:52:57] HARLOW: The president tells "The New York Times" that the media will essentially let him win the 2020 election. I guess we know that he's planning to run again.

CNN media analyst Bill Carter is with me.

And, Bill, let's just break down the president's words here, OK? Here's the first part. He says, quote, another reason that I'm going to win another four years is because newspapers, televisions, all forms of the media will tank if I'm not there because without me their ratings are going to go down the tube.


BILL CARTER, CNN MEDIA ANALYST: Well, he has something of a point there because I think if you just looked at the recent ratings, everybody in cable news is way up, and it's partially because the public is obsessed with watching the news because they're afraid of what's going on and they're unnerved about what's going in the world and in the country. \

But I think his point that the networks, therefore, would somehow not take it -- you know, not do their job because they're concerned about their ratings, that indicates he doesn't really respect reporters because obviously we would do the honest job. That's what we do. We wouldn't decide, oh, let's not do -- let's not do the real job, we've got to worry about our ratings.

HARLOW: It also seems like he doesn't understand that -- I mean the media has been holding him accountable this entire time throughout the entire campaign and his entire first year of the presidency.

CARTER: Well --

HARLOW: He also went on to say -- he went even further and he said, so they, the media, basically have to let me win. And then he says, and probably six months before the election they'll be loving me because they'll be saying, please, please don't lose Donald Trump.

CARTER: Yes. Again, this is -- this is a calculation that I think he would make, which is that the important thing is to make money, to sustain ratings, sustain popularity. So, therefore, you don't do your honest job, you do what's best for your company, best for your ratings.

And it also indicates he doesn't realize that people aren't covering him now because they want ratings, they're covering him now because this is the facts. This is the actual news.

HARLOW: Because he's the president. CARTER: And he's the president. And every day he makes news. So that's why he gets covered. And if he doesn't like the coverage, he says it's fake, it's fake news, and they're only doing it for ratings. None of it is an honest evaluation of the process of journalism at all.

[09:55:06] HARLOW: But then he gave the half hour sit-down to "The New York Times," which he deems the failing "New York Times."


HARLOW: It is good to see the president giving these interviews, no?

CARTER: Well, he hasn't done one in a long time.

HARLOW: Right.

CARTER: And he didn't do the traditional press conference at the end of the year.

HARLOW: Right.

CARTER: So, yes, he gave some -- he gave this interview. It was -- it was kind of this stream of consciousness just talking off the top of his head, just, you know, the reporter just let him go, just let him roll. And I think it was a wise choice in this way because this is what -- this is what Trump is like and he just follows topic after topic after topic. And he did say a lot. He did get a lot of information from him.

HARLOW: Yes, we learned a lot.

Bill Carter, appreciate the analysis. Thank you. Have a great New Year.

CARTER: You, too.

HARLOW: President Trump thinks that Special Counsel Bob Mueller will treat him fairly in the Russia probe, so he said in this "New York Times" interview. He also insisted 16 times there was no collusion with Russia. The latest on that, next.