Return to Transcripts main page


New CNN Poll: Biden Lead Slips To Five Points After Debates As Harris And Warren Surge, While Sanders Drops To Fourth; NYT: White House Weighs North Korea Nuclear Freeze After Trump's Surprise Meeting With Kim Jong-Un; New CNN Poll: Support For Biden Down 10 Points As Harris Moves Up 9 Points Into Second Place; New CNN Poll: Harris And Warren Surge As Biden And Sanders Lose Ground After Debates; Iran Breaks Low-Grade Enriched Uranium Limits Set Under 2015 Nuclear Deal; Trump Talking With Reporters Now In Oval Office; Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) Discuss The Poll Numbers. Aired: 5-6p ET

Aired July 1, 2019 - 17:00   ET


MICHAEL DE ADDER, POLITICAL CARTOONIST: It was like hitting a brick wall. I mean ...


DE ADDER: ... had they were just going with reader favorite, they probably would have filled out the week at least.

TAPPER: Yes, I have to go. Political cartoonist, Michael de Adder, thank you so much for your time. Good luck to you. Our coverage on CNN continues right now.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Happening now, breaking news, dramatic drop. A new CNN poll shows Joe Biden clinging to a narrow lead after dropping 10 points in the wake of the first Democratic debate. Kamala Harris has jumped into second place closely followed by Elizabeth Warren. Nuclear power in a sharp reversal of past policy. A new report says that Trump administration may be willing to agree to a nuclear freeze by North Korea. Is the U.S. about to let North Korea continue to be a nuclear power.

Embracing dictators, before his meeting with Kim Jong-un, the President embraced autocrats and strong men at the G20 summit. Is this fascination with dictators leading him to make concessions? And misusing security, congressional Democrats are investigating a whistleblower's claim that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo used his security details to pick up the family dog from the groomer and to pick up takeout food leading agents to complain, their view is quote, Uber eats with guns.

I'm Wolf Blitzer. You're in The Situation ROOM.


BLITZER: Breaking news, a new CNN poll shows dramatic tightening of the race for the Democratic presidential nomination. Joe Biden's lead has been cut to five points as Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren have surged following the first debates. Biden has slipped to 22 percent with Harris at 17 percent, Warren at 50 percent, Bernie Sanders has dropped to fourth place at 14 percent. No other candidates hit the 5 percent mark.

Also tonight, President Trump is back from what he calls a perfect G20 Summit and a stunning visit to North Korea where he walked into the Demilitarized Zone where for a historic meeting with Kim Jong-un. Democrats are slamming that is nothing more than a photo-op while North Korea is celebrating it as a propaganda victory and The New York Times reports the Trump administration is now weighing a nuclear freeze for North Korea which would let the North Koreans keep their nuclear weapons.

I'll speak with Congressman Ro Khanna of the Oversight and Armed Services Committees. And our correspondents and analysts, they will have full coverage of today's top stories. Let's begin with the breaking news.

A brand new CNN poll just out showing a significant tightening of the Democratic presidential race. Let's go straight to CNN Political Director David Chalian. So David walked us through the new numbers.

DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Wolf, this is a dramatic reshaping of the Democratic nomination race that we are seeing in these brand-new exclusive CNN numbers. Joe Biden's lead in this race has dramatically narrowed. Take a look at the top line numbers here.

You see, this is a four-way race here now at the top. Biden, his lead is a narrow one at 22 percent, followed by Kamala Harris at 17 percent, Elizabeth Warren at 15 percent, Bernie Sanders at 14 percent. Let's look at the change just since last month, I think it shows you how dramatic the shift is.

What you see here is Biden is down 10 percentage points here from last month. Harris and Warren, they have doubled their support in the last month. Harris up nine, Warren up eight. You see that Sanders has gone down four and Buttigieg down one there.

We also see the success of Kamala Harris' debate performance because we asked about it of Democratic voters, those that watch the debate or tuned into the debate. We said, "Who did the best job in the debate?" Take a look at this. Kamala Harris gets 41 percent of debate watchers and followers saying she did the best job at the debate. Nobody else is even close, Wolf, 13 percent for Warren, 10 percent for Biden.

Another good factor in this poll for Kamala Harris is people want to know more about her. We asked, "Other than the candidate you're supporting, who do you want to hear more about?" Kamala Harris scores on this front, 30 percent of Democrats want to hear more about her, 24 percent for Warren, 23 percent for Buttigieg.

So there are some good news here for Kamala Harris and obviously that top-line number a little concerning for Joe Biden.

BLITZER: Joe Biden tried to paint himself as the frontrunner, the most electable in the contest against President Trump. What do these numbers mean for him now?

CHALIAN: Well, you raised what is his calling card in this race. We asked Democrats, Wolf, what matters more to you, defeating Donald Trump or getting a candidate who agrees with you on the issues and it's not even close. More than six in 10 Democrats say that they want a candidate that can defeat Trump. Only 30 percent of Democrats say they want somebody who shares their positions on the issues.

[17:05:01] And then we asked, "OK, well who do you think can best defeat Donald Trump?" And this is Joe Biden's category going away, 43 percent of Democrats say they want, they believe Joe Biden can defeat Donald Trump. Nobody else is even close. You see Sanders, Harris, Warren there, all bunched up, Wolf.

If there is a candidate that can pierce this notion that Biden is the best one to beat Trump, he could be in serious trouble. Sorry, I was just going to show you one other area of his support. Part of the strength is African-American voters. Take a look.

You can see this by race. Look at that, among African-American voters on the right there, Biden is at 36 percent, to Harris at 24, to Warren at 12 and to Sanders at nine. And you see on the white vote there, it's a closer race, Wolf, that advantage among African-American voters is one of the things keeping Joe Biden with that narrow lead right now.

BLITZER: So Kamala Harris, she obviously did very well at the debate. What does she have to do now?

CHALIAN: Well, I we did test on a bunch of issues and she clearly is the frontrunner when it comes to who can best handle race relations. Take a look, 29 percent say that Kamala Harris can indeed deal with race relations better than anyone else in the field. But if you look at these next issues, climate crisis, you see that she drops if you look at the economy, you see that that is a strong suit for Joe Biden.

But, again, Kamala Harris down at 6 percent on who can best handle the economy. So these are issue areas that are advantage for Biden, Warren and Sanders. And if you look at health care, it's a similar story. You see that Sanders has the advantage on health care, 26 percent say he can handle that the best.

Biden at 18, Warren at 16, Harris down at 10 and this may explain why Harris is not seen yet as sort of dominant on the health care issue. You've seen the whole conversation about private insurance. This is among Democrats, Wolf. I just want to make that clear.

Among Democrats, only 30 percent favor going to a government-run program that would replace private insurance, 49 percent, the plurality says, "No, we should not replace private insurance entirely with the government-run program." So when Kamala Harris, and Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders and Bill de Blasio, those four raised their hands and then Kamala Harris said the next day she heard the question wrong, that's the political concern for her. Not even Democrats are supportive of getting rid of private insurance. BLITZER: And those numbers show before and after the debate where

these top Democratic candidates were. Let me put those numbers back on the screen and get your other takeaways and specifically look at Joe Biden, he lost 10 points.

CHALIAN: Yes. Now, remember, this poll is from May to now obviously the debate performance was critical in this, but that 10-point drop is a dramatic shift. Remember, we saw Joe Biden already dropping from April to May in our poll. He went from 39 to that 32. Now, he's down to 22 and you see that we have a very clear top tier, four candidates in the hunt right now for the nomination.

BLITZER: Harris, Warren and Sanders they're basically very progressive, very similar on a lot of these issues. Joe bide not necessarily.

CHALIAN: Right. It's interesting that you note that I just mentioned the Medicare for all in private insurance Harris, Warren, Sanders they all raised their hands. Harris now said she misheard the question, but you're right to notice the ideological divide. And inside this poll, we see Bernie - Joe Biden, sorry does really well with moderate Democrats, conservative Democrats, older Democrats. We see the others doing well with liberals, doing better with younger voters.

So Joe Biden is depending now on a turnout in this Democratic contest that really relies more on moderate Democrats than it does on liberal younger Democrats.

BLITZER: Yes. It is wide open right now. Let's see what happens, especially going towards the end of the month when the second debate right here on CNN will be taking place. David, we'll have lot more on these numbers coming up. Thank you very much.

In other news, President Trump is basking in the afterglow of his stunning visit to North Korea at a historic meeting with Kim Jong-un. Let's go to our senior White House Correspondent Pamela Brown. Pamela, did that photo-op come with a price?

PAMELA BROWN, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, that remains to be seen, Wolf. But certainly President Trump is back at the White House tonight. He is boasting about that surprise meeting you just showed with Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader and the success of the G20.

But, Wolf, even as president, Trump rebels in the history-making trip. He faces new challenges tonight relating to Iran.


BROWN(voice-over): Tonight, President Donald Trump back at the White House, tweeting, "There wasn't a thing missing or a mistake that was made. Perfect." On the hills of the G20 and his monumental surprise visit to North Korea where he had an impromptu meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.


meet you at this place. If you take a step forward, you'll be the first U.S. President to cross this line.


BROWN(voice-over): Trump taking 20 steps into north Korea, making him the first sitting American President to set foot in the hermit kingdom. He was greeted by the smiling Kim Jong-un.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This is my honor. I didn't really expect it stepping across that line was a great honor.


[17:10:10] BROWN(voice-over): The two leaders met for almost an hour, agreeing to restart negotiations on a long elusive nuclear agreement. The President even suggested Kim Jong-un should visit the White House. All of this as The New York Times is reporting the U.S. may be willing to agree to a nuclear freeze which would pause further weapons development in North Korea, but allow it to keep existing weapons.

This would be a reversal for the Trump administration's previous goal of complete denuclearization by North Korea. White House National Security Adviser John Bolton slam the report tweeting, "I read this New York Times story with curiosity. Neither that NSC staff nor I have discussed or heard of any desire to settle for a nuclear freeze by North Korea. This was a reprehensible attempt by someone to box in the President. There should be consequences."

Bolton who has been a strong advocate for full denuclearization of North Korea was in Mongolia and not present for Trump's meeting with Kim. After the Kim meeting, the President took aim at the Obama administration and its inability to get a meeting with Kim according to Trump.


TRUMP: President Obama wanted to meet and Chairman Kim would not meet him. The Obama administration was begging for a meeting, they were begging for meetings constantly and Chairman Kim would not meet with him.


BROWN(voice-over): That prompted a sharp rebuttal from former Obama National Security Adviser Susan Rice with this tweet. This happening in the same day that Iran has exceeded its uranium stockpile limit set in the 2015 Obama administration nuclear deal with Iran. The move is Iran's major breach of the accord since Trump withdrew from the agreement last year.

The deal limited Iran's uranium enrichment in exchange for an easing of international sanctions. Trump's meeting with Kim came after several days of cozying up to other dictators and strong men at the G20, including Saudi Crown Prince MbS.


TRUMP: You've done a really a spectacular job.


BROWN(voice-over): China's President Xi.


TRUMP: Now we become friends.


BROWN(voice-over): Turkey's President Erdogan.


TRUMP: My honor to be with a friend of mine.


BROWN(voice-over): And Russian President Vladimir Putin who he joked with about election interference.


TRUMP: Don't meddle in the election please. Don't meddle in the election.


BROWN: And Wolf just moments ago, reporters were called into the Oval Office with President Trump for a bill signing. This would be an opportunity for those reporters to ask questions, so we'll see if the President makes any news and of course we will bring you the latest, Wolf.

BLITZER: We'll be getting that tape. We'll watch it closely. Pamela, thank you very much. That tape should be coming in fairly soon. Joining us now, Democratic Congressman Ro Khanna of California. He's a member of both the Oversight and the Armed Services Committees.

Congressman, thanks so much for joining us. I know you serve as co- chair of Bernie Sanders' 2020 presidential campaign. Sanders as you just saw in our brand-new poll has dropped four points. How do you explain why other progressive candidates right now we're seeing a dramatic surge in their poll numbers?

REP. RO KHANNA (D-CA): Well, there's no doubt that Kamala Harris had a good night in the debate and I give her credit. But we should remember, Wolf, that at this point in the cycle, Donald Trump was at 1 or 2 percent and Barack Obama was way down to Hillary Clinton. So these poll numbers as you know are going to change and we're still a long way from caucus day in Iowa. BLITZER: You saw how dramatic the increase in popularity at least

according to this poll for Senator Kamala Harris, a nine-point bump in our poll. Could her growing popularity, Congressman, explain why you think she was recently targeted by Donald Trump Jr.?

KHANNA: I do. Those were disgusting attacks by Donald Trump Jr. engaging in birtherism and every Democrat should condemn them. Look, Kamala Harris had a terrific night. She articulates a vision of a pluralistic America very well and I think she is a compelling candidate. She's going to be a serious contender and we should make sure that the Republicans don't resort to those kind of attacks.

BLITZER: Let's turn now, Congressman, to the President's historic steps into North Korea. The first American President to actually do so. You say the President should be applauded for his latest meeting with Kim Jong-un. What does President Trump though have to show for all of this?

KHANNA: Well, he has to show that we at least aren't having an escalation of threats. I mean, you remember when we were having the bloody nose theory, I mean, largely of his own making, at least that has calmed down. But I think there are two things that we can go, have happen moving forward. First let's have a peace agreement, let's move past the 1953 armistice in a non-aggression pact.

Then second, let's insist on denuclearization and I think if we had the first, the North Koreans would be willing to do the second.

BLITZER: You think the North Koreans would actually be willing to give up their stockpile of what 20 or 50 or 60 nuclear bombs, give up that nuclear capability that they currently have?

[17:15:09] KHANNA: Chung-in Moon was in my office. He's a Senior Adviser to President Moon of South Korea. He believes that at this moment, if we were to sign a non-aggression pact and if we were to have a peace agreement that Kim Jong-un would be willing to engage in at least 90 percent denuclearization. I think it is worth strongly exploring. What I wouldn't do is remove the sanctions before we saw massive concrete action from the North Koreans.

BLITZER: As you know the goal of the Trump administration has been complete denuclearization on the part of North Korea. The New York Times they're now reporting that the administration is considering accepting a freeze on North Korea's nuclear program, keeping it where it is today but not moving further along. Would you view that as a win?

KHANNA: I would view that as a constructive first step, especially if Yongbyon, the main place where they're developing nuclear fuel is suspended. Of course, North Korea still has estimates of 20 to 60 nuclear weapons and I don't think we can just stop in a freeze and say it's OK for them to have a thousand pounds of uranium and these nuclear weapons and we certainly can't lift sanctions until that threat is there. But I think a nuclear freeze is at least a constructive step in the right direction. BLITZER: After a very dramatic and dare I say historic weekend, a

very high stakes diplomacy, you suggested you'd rather have Ivanka Trump there with the President than John Bolton, the President's National Security Adviser. Tell us why you feel that way.

KHANNA: Well, Ivanka Trump didn't rip up the North Korean agreement that Bill Clinton negotiated. Bill Clinton had almost solved this issue back in the late 1990s and then John Bolton said, "Let's put North Korea as an axis of evil." Ivanka Trump didn't architect our war in Iraq, one of the greatest blunders. Ivanka Trump didn't lead us to almost another war with Iran.

So I don't want John Bolton anywhere close to our foreign policy negotiations and the best news of this weekend was he was exiled to Mongolia.

BLITZER: Yes. While the President was meeting with Kim Jong-un, he was actually visiting Mongolia. You're absolutely right. Congressman Ro Khanna, thanks so much for joining us.

KHANNA: Thank you, Wolf.

BLITZER: Up next, Joe Biden is still the front-runner but not by much, so what is his drop in the new CNN poll mean for his campaign going forward? And Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren they are surging after the first debate. I can they keep their momentum?


[17:22:24] BLITZER: We have breaking news, the Democratic presidential race just released CNN poll taken after last week's first presidential debate, shows Joe Biden's lead shrinking dramatically while Senators Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren, they are surging. Let's bring in our experts to discuss. Bianna Golodryga, I'll put the put the numbers back up on the screen. Take a look at this and see how Biden has gone down from May.

He was at 32 percent, now only 22 percent. Harris has gone up from 8 percent to 17 percent. Warren has gone from 7 to 15. Sanders has gone down from 18 to 14. Buttigieg has gone down from 5 to 4. Everybody else is below 4 percent. What do you make of these numbers?

Bianna Golodryga, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, look it was Joe Biden's night to lose coming out of the gate. He had to perform strongly. His team will tell you that they expected these numbers to drop given, that he's the frontrunner and that's traditionally what happens. But all of us can assess that this was not a strong night and a strong performance for Joe Biden.

He came in visibly unprepared for some of the issues that were raised, specifically race relations coming from Kamala Harris. He stopped short, given that he said he was out of time which is something historically never see from a candidate up there, especially this was his third dance now at running for office. And it's early, they will have many more chances to debate but given that sharp drop in numbers it's something that he's got to really be prepared for going forward in these other debates, specifically on issues and as you alluded to earlier in your conversation with David Chalian among African- Americans.

If African America can visualize a scenario where Kamala Harris can take on Donald Trump, then Joe Biden should be really concerned and take a page from Hillary Clinton and never to underestimate the African-American vote or take it for granted.

BLITZER: Well, April Ryan, on that point, take a look at these numbers in our brand new CNN poll. Among white voters in general Biden is at 20 percent, Harris 17, Warren 16, Sanders 15 fairly close but among African-American, among black voters, Biden still has a dramatically 36 percent, Kamala Harris is at 24 percent, Elizabeth Warren 12 percent, Bernie Sanders 9 percent, Buttigieg at zero.

APRIL RYAN, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, AMERICAN URBAN RADIO NETWORKS: Yes. This is pretty, of a big, a significant moment for Joe Biden. He is the one that everyone wanted to get when it comes to the black vote. He had the numbers, one, because he was the vice president of the first black President Barack Hussein Obama and he worked on issues of equality with him.

But at the same time, Kamala Harris knew he was the one to get at this last debate. She has chipped away at his numbers.

[17:25:01] Now, this is the big piece, this weekend if Joe Biden wants to really secure or try to get back those numbers he lost, this weekend if Joe Biden wants to really secure or try to get back those numbers he lost, this weekend Joe Biden has a critical moment. The ESSENCE Festival, the largest gathering of black America is happening in New Orleans. The candidates that are going, Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Beto O'Rourke, also Cory Booker.

Joe Biden has a logistical problem. He can't make it. He's going to be in Texas on Friday and then South Carolina for the rest of the weekend and he's doing a debate in South Carolina which is one of the first states that holds ...

BLITZER: What do you mean debate?

RYAN: I mean not a debate, I'm sorry, a town hall.

BLITZER: Yes, because they're not allowed to debate.

RYAN: I know. I'm sorry. It's like debate town hall, OK. It's a town hall.


RYAN: Town hall on Sunday. But he's not able to make the ESSENCE Festival which is a big gathering and it's a political gathering right now in this political season. So if he wants to keep his black numbers, he's got to figure this weekend out and moving forward. Kamala Harris is coming for him.

BLITZER: Susan Hennessey, what do you make of the fact that Bernie Sanders, his numbers in this brand new CNN poll have clearly gone down? Maybe at the expense of some of these other left-leaning candidates like Elizabeth Warren, for example, Kamala Harris, how concern should he be?

SUSAN HENNESSEY, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY AGENCY ATTORNEY: Well, this is a sign that it's going to be a really different primary than 2016 when Bernie Sanders was able to stake out sort of the vast left position while Hillary Clinton really was sort of a traditional centrist. People like Elizabeth Warren have come out with highly sophisticated specific proposals that are every bit as left as anything that Bernie Sanders is offering.

We saw candidates like Julian Castro offering a policy proposal of decriminalizing border crossing.

RYAN: That's right.

HENNESSEY: That was a position that would have been unthinkable even just a few years ago. And so I think as well Castro is young, Warren is a woman, both are substantially younger than Bernie Sanders. I think one of the lessons of the 2016 primary is having an anointed candidate is not necessarily a healthy thing for a party. And so, of course, Biden remains the frontrunner but what we're seeing here is a substantive issues driven debate which these candidates are offering very, very different visions to their voters for the best direction for the president to take the country moving forward.

BLITZER: Bianna, I want to point out Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana. He's polling now at just 4 percent. He was at 5 percent in May in our poll, now he's at 4 percent. But in the second quarter he raised a very impressive, what, $24.8 million. Will this money and it's a lot of money he now has enable him to go forward in a better way?

GOLODRYGA: Well, it'll enable him to stay in the race for the foreseeable future, that's for sure. This is a lot of money that he's been able to raise. But even more impressive are the number of donors. Some 400,000 donors that he's been able to bring over to his camp.

Now with that having been said, this number is sort of a lagging metric. He was in his honeymoon phase in the second quarter. Since then there have been a few bumps in the road, specifically given race relations and his handling of police shooting in his town of South Bend. So that having been said, I think this guarantees him a slot in this race for the foreseeable future and I think his performance last week shows that he really, despite the fact that he doesn't have a lengthy resume, really has a firm vision of what his candidacy would bring to the country.

BLITZER: All right. Everybody stand by. Sean, standby. We're going to get to you in a moment. We're standing by also to hear from the President. He just answered reporters' questions in the Oval Office over at the White House. We're about to get that tape. We'll be right back.



WOLF BLITZER, HOST, CNN NEWS: We're back with our experts and our analysts as we stand by for the playback of President Trump's question and answer session he's just had with reporters over at the White House, the President signed into law H.R.3151, it's called the Taxpayer First Act which makes the IRS supposedly a little bit more taxpayer friendly.

The President spoke at length about that, but then he took reporters' questions, we're told he answered questions on the Iran nuclear deal, what's happening with Iran right now, the protests unfolding in Hong Kong, the questions involving the census that the Supreme Court ruled on the other day, some important citizenship questions that the President is talking about.

Also several questions about China, the President going into - into some length just coming back from the G20 summit in Japan, then he went off to South Korea then he actually stepped foot into North Korea for a meeting with Kim Jong-un. Here's the President answering questions.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, any message to Iran?

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP, UNITED STATES: No, no message to Iran. They know what they're doing, they know what they're playing with and I think they're playing with fire. So no message to Iran whatsoever.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Any reaction to the protests in Hong Kong today?

TRUMP: In Hong Kong, I hope it gets solved. I was with President Xi of China, we had a great talk, a great discussion, we're talking about doing something and we talked about it briefly but that's very sad.

I've rarely seen a protest like that, it's very sad to see.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Will you be delaying the census, Mr. President?

TRUMP: Where?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Will you be delaying the census, the Supreme Court ruling on the census?

TRUMP: Yes, we're looking at that, we think that a census obviously if you do all of this work and you're talking about - nobody can believe this, but they spend billions of dollars on the census and you're not allowed to ask.

You go knock on doors of houses, check houses, you go through all this detail and you're not allowed to ask whether or not somebody is a citizen.

[17:35:00] So you can ask other things, but you can't ask whether or not somebody's a citizen? So we are trying to do that. We're looking at that very strongly.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And why (inaudible) - sir if I could follow up, why do you think it's so important that that question be asked on the census?

TRUMP: I think it's very important to find out if somebody's a citizen as opposed to an illegal. I think that there's a big difference to me between being a citizen of the United States and being an illegal.

And you know, the Democrats want to treat the illegals with healthcare and with other things better than they treat the citizens of our country. If you look at a coal miner that has black lung disease, you're talking about people that get treated better than the coal miner, and these people got sick working for the United States.

And we're treating people that just walked in better. You look at what they're doing in California, how they're treating people. They don't treat their people as well as they treat illegal immigrants. So at what point does it stop? It's crazy what they're doing, it's crazy. And it's mean and it's very unfair to our citizens.

And we're going to stop it. But we may need an election to stop it and we may need to get back the House. Yes.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. President (inaudible) when will the round of trade talks with China begin, after your agreement over the weekend?

TRUMP: It's already begun.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are they (inaudible)?

TRUMP: Yes, already begun, they're speaking very much on phone, but they're also meeting. Yes, it's essentially already begun. It actually began before our meeting.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But do you know when the - Lighthizer will sit down?

TRUMP: Whatever it takes. Look if we don't make a great deal, if we don't make a fair deal, it has to be better for us and for them because they had such a big advantage for so many years.

And otherwise you can't make a 50/50 deal when somebody else has been absolutely - I've been talking about this for years, China made - we had a surplus meaning they did on us, of $507 billion. It's been hundreds of billions of dollars a year for many, many years, so obviously we can't make a 50/50 deal.

It has to be a deal that is somewhat tilted to our advantage. And if we're not going to do that, we're taking in a fortune from tariffs. And unfortunately we're hurting China by doing that because many of their companies are leaving and going to a non-tariff state so they don't have to pay the tariffs.

And the other misconception about China and I think you read an article today in the Wall Street Journal about it, our people aren't paying for those tariffs in that case certainly, China's paying for them and those companies are paying for them.

China devalued their currency very substantially and they also put a lot of money into their economy, they're pouring money. It's fake money but it's money, and they're pouring money into their economy to take care of their tariffs.

Our people aren't - you don't have increased inflation, you have no increased inflation. But I'll tell you what is happening, our Treasury is taking in billions and billions of dollars of money that normally would be for China.

So we'll see what happens, we hope that we can make a deal but it's got to be a fair deal. We had a deal as far as I was concerned, and then at the last moment China decided they didn't like that deal and they changed it. It's all right.

Then I said you're going to pay 25 percent tariffs on $250 billion.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And if President Xi said he would move on some of those issues that were agreeable -

TRUMP: Yes I expect him to move, and if he doesn't move, that's OK too. I'm very happy either way. But I think we have a good chance of making a deal. I think they want to make a deal because they're losing many companies that are leaving because of the tariffs, because they don't want to pay the tariffs.

So they're losing many companies, they're moving to Vietnam, and by the way some are moving back to the United States where they belong.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President do you plan to have tanks for 4th of July?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) tariffs -

TRUMP: Sure.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) entirely off the (ph) (inaudible) -

TRUMP: Well now they are because I think the President's doing a great job. He put 16,000 people in this weekend and they're forming, but they're, you know, getting to the border, they're doing a great job and he has 6,000 people at the border with Guatemala.

So I mean it's been way down, it's cut way down. You'll start to see the numbers over the next three or four weeks.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) continuously reassess so (inaudible) -

TRUMP: Well that's true.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- absolutely (inaudible).

TRUMP: No, no that's true, yes if they don't do it but they're doing a good job. Right now they're doing a very good job, we're very happy with the job they're doing. Now it's because of tariffs that they're doing it, but the point is they're doing a very good job and he's very smart to do it, because that's a tiny fraction - it sounds like a lot of soldiers but that's a fraction of what tariffs would cause Mexico.

But I very much appreciate it. And he's doing a great job for Mexico because the Mexican people were very upset with all of these tens of thousands of people - hundreds of thousands of people walking through Mexico. And the people of Mexico are just as happy as I am with what they're doing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) Border Patrol Facebook group and these derogatory blogger (ph) comments that they've been making about members of Congress?

TRUMP: Well I don't know what they're saying about members of Congress. I know that the Border Patrol is not happy with the Democrats in Congress, I will say the Republicans do want border security.

The Democrats want open borders. Open borders means tremendous crime.


If you look, there was a report that came out where approximately 600 people in the last caravan were serious criminals. I don't want them in our country.

So, the Border Partrol, they're patriots, they're great people. They love our country. They know what's coming in. And you know who knows it better than anybody? Hispanics.

Hispanics love what I'm doing, because number one, they don't want to loose their job, they don't want to take a pay cut, and very importantly, most importantly, they don't want to have crime. They understand it. The people that understand the border the best are Hispanics.

They understand it better than anybody and they don't want to have to suffer crime and they don't want to take a pay cut, they don't want to loose their job. That's why my poll numbers went way up with Hispanics, because they really understand the border the best of anybody. OK, any other ...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, are you planning to have tanks out on the fourth of July at the Lincoln Memorial for your speech?

TRUMP: We're going to have a great fourth of July in Washington, D.C. It will be like no other. It'll be special and I hope a lot of people come and it's going to be about this country, and it's a salute to America.

And I'm going to be here and I'm going to say a few words and we're going to have planes going over head, the best fighter jets in the world and other planes too. And we're going to have some tanks stationed outside. Got to be pretty careful with the tanks, because the roads have a tendency not to like to carry heavy tanks, so we have to put them in certain areas.

But, we have the brand new Sherman tanks and we have the brand new Abram tanks and we have some incredible equipment, military equipment on display, brand new and we're very proud of it.

We're making a lot of new tanks right now, we're building a lot of new tanks in Lima, Ohio, our great tank factory. The people wanted to close down until I got elected and I stopped it from being closed down. And now it's a very productive facility and they do -- nobody -- it's the greatest tank in the world, the Abrams.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you think that you can give a speech that can reach all Americans?

TRUMP: I think so. I think so. I think I've reached most Americans. Most Americans want no crime, most Americans want a strong military, they want good education, they want good healthcare.

If you look at preexisting conditions, the Republicans are going save it preexisting conditions, the Democrats won't be able to do it. What the Democrats plan is, is going to destroy the country and it's going to be horrible healthcare, horrible healthcare and everybody's taxes are going to go to 95 percent.

And by the way, that's not enough. But the taxes, if they ever did what they want to do, your taxes go to 95 percent and that isn't nearly enough. Thank you very much everybody.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right this way.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The United States traditionally supported Democracy (inaudible), do you have a message (ph) (inaudible) to those demonstrators who say they want more than one (ph) (inaudible)?

TRUMP: Well, they're looking for Democracy and I think most people want Democracy. Unfortunately, some governments don't want Democracy, but that's what it's all about, it's all about Democracy, there's never been anything better and I think we're the best example of it, right here in the United States. OK. Thank you very much.


UNIDENTIFIED: Right this way. Thank you guys. Thank you all.


BLITZER: All right, so the President in the Oval Office going through a wide range of issues there, answering reporter's questions. Everything from the demonstrations in Hong Kong, what's going on with Iran right now?

The President is saying the Iranians are playing with fire right now. Going after the Democrats, he says the Democrats want open borders, Republicans, he says, want secure borders.

Let me get Shawn Turner into this. When the President says the Iranian, because of the uranium enrichment now is going to go beyond what the Iran Nuclear Deal allowed, the deal that he walked away from, he says they're playing with fire. How do you interpret that?

SHAWN TURNER, FORMER DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS FOR U.S. NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: Yes, listen Wolf, as the tension continues to arise with Iran, I hope that people don't forget that, just as you pointed out and as the President pointed out, we had a deal with Iran.

We had a deal in which the international community in which the other signatures (ph) to that deal were able to verify that Iran wasn't moving forward with their nuclear program.

So when the President now says that Iran is playing with fire, we have to go back and look at how we actually got here. Everything that has happened since this administration walked away from the joint comprehensive plan of action has been designed to insight and to escalate this tension with Iran, everything from the designation of terrorist organizations to increased tariffs, right up until the President got pulled back this recent action.

So, what I interpret the President doing here is kind of this continued maximum pressure, but it's a very dangerous thing, because as we know, Iran will respond to increased pressure as we've seen them doing that in the past. And as a result, this could get out of control very quickly.

BLITZER: Clearly, April, the President had politics on his mind as well, but let me get your thoughts on this. The President's son, Donald Trump, Jr., he deleted a post -- a tweet that he had over the weekend.


He deleted this message somebody else wrote. Kamala Harris is not an American black, she's half Indian, half Jamaican. Donald Trump, Jr. added on top of that retweet, is this true? Wow. And then he went ahead and deleted it. Kamala Harris is -- mother was from India, father was from Jamaica.

APRIL RYAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Eerily familiar isn't it? President Trump began his political career with birtherism and that gave him basically the Oval Office. He began that way and now his son is trying to throw this at another black person who is of mixed race, but who was born in this nation. No one questions President Trump when he talks about his father was born in Germany or even Ted Cruze, but let's get back to this. Kamala Harris is a threat to this White House because she is black

woman. This President has a problem with strong black women or black women period, end of story. And then watching her in those debates, Kamala Harris showed that, as the young people say, the clap back, she had a clap back when she went after Joe Biden and she definitely showed, in this first round of debates, that she can stand toe-to-toe with Donald Trump and give him what she -- he gives her. So, she is a threat to them in more ways than one.

BLITZER: How did you see it Susan?

SUSAN HENNESSEY, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, I think it is a new manifestation of birtherism, right? The same idea of questioning the birth and legitimacy of any person of color who would dare to enter into politics.

And I think that whatever -- we first saw birtherism come out against President Obama, of course pioneered by Donald Trump, Sr., a lot of people dismissed it as sort of too absurd to eve respond to. I think now we're in a different place. We understand how damaging and how racist these attacks really are.

Do think it's notable that saw all of the other Democratic contenders coming forward, calling these -- calling these attacks unacceptable and racist and calling them out and really seeing that strong push back. It's also a little bit of an indication about the disinformation problem is going to persist into this election.

Once again, even after everything that was documented in the Mueller Report, we have the President's son on Twitter, retweeting a lie about -- about political figures. And so, to the extent that there are lessons t be learned, it's pretty clear that Donald Trump, Jr. is not interested in learning that.

BLITZER: Brianna, is it -- this tweet from Donald Trump, Jr., the retweet with his commentary at the top that he since removed, is it proof though that the Trump campaign, the Trump team sees Senator Kamala Harris a potential real threat?

GOLODRYGA: Well you'll recall the day that she announced, the President complimented her announcement and rollout and said that he was impressed by the crowd size. I think in everything I'm hearing from sources, close and within the administration, suggest that they just don't know what to make of Kamala Harris.

And the President, and while he may be intrigued by her, doesn't necessarily know how he would combat here, if in fact they were to debate. And I think from viewers perspectives, specifically Democrats, last week showed them that Kamala, not only, could stand toe-to-toe with Joe Biden, but perhaps that gave them a window into what she would look like standing next to President Trump.

BLITZER: Let me get Shawn to weight in. Go ahead Shawn.

TURNER: Yes, I think first of all, it absolutely is the case that, the point that Susan made with regard to disinformation is really important. Look, as -- as we kind of get into this election cycle, it's important for people to remember that as we concern ourselves with the influence of foreign disinformation, what you saw right here was a great example of homegrown kind of domestic disinformation.

It was very interesting what Donald Trump, Jr. did when he deleted the tweet, someone on his behalf put on a message saying that he was simply asking a question. Well, we've seen that before with the President, where in order to kind of get something out there in the narrative, he simply -- simply asks a provocative question and I think that's really important for people to remember.

Look, this is a -- I think that this is kind of a preview of the kind of reprehensible dialogue that we're going to see going forward as we get into this election and I think it's just -- it's important for people to be hyperaware of exactly what we're looking at here.

GOLODRYGA: And it also -- it also came, remember, just three days after the President sort of flippantly, when asked, told Vladamir Putin, knock it off, don't interfere in our election system.

I mean, this is why we always stress, regardless of what the administration does with regards to sanctions and what have you, what the President says and how he reacts to this is of ut most importance, because he not only represents this country, but other leaders see him as that. And if he's flippant about these issues, they see it potentially as a green light to continue.

RYAN: Shawn -- but going back to Shawn really fast, Wolf, what Shawn is saying basically is absolutely right. There are people who will believe that and keep pushing that narrative, trying to say, again, another black person is illegitimate and she doesn't deserve this high office that she's trying to fight for.


BLITZER: You heard the President just now, I know your ears popped up, Susan, that I can see when he said that democrats want to treat what he called illegals better than they treat Americans. He says it's crazy. It's mean. It's very unfair. He says that the democrats simply want open borders. Republicans want real border security.

HENNESSEY: Yes, so this is significant. The President of the United States pretty much admitted that the reason why we wants this question to be on the census is because he thinks that it's ridiculous that you would could quite illegals as he calls them.

The problem is that the United States constitution says that every ten years we will count all persons in order to decide how many representatives that state has in the House of Representatives. It is not about counting citizens. That's precisely why the Supreme Court said they had to delay this question.

And so for the President to once again suggest that they would potentially delay the census, census is April 1st, that's dictated by statute to require a law to change. It continues to raise real concerns not of the formal delay of the census but potentially of the Executive Branch trying to sort of muck up the works.

Even very, very minor delays in census returns can cause serious problems for counting and redistricting purposes. So this is really something to stay focused on.

BLITZER: And Bianna, he says Hispanics love -- and I'm quoting him now, the Hispanics love what he says we're doing.

GOLODRYGA: Yes, I don't know where he's getting that information. But I do think a takeaway is not only does the President love tanks but he also love tariffs. And it's clear that he abused tariffs whether it be trade negotiations with Chins or even border issues with Mexico as leverage.

And to his credit, over the past few weeks ever since Mexicans have said that they would in fact send out more of their troops to prevent the migrants from coming over to the U.S. side. The numbers have gone down.

But it is an indication what a priority the President views this as and his administration is saying that the Mexican government is doing more and being more proactive than even the democrats are.

BLITZER: Everybody stand by. There's more breaking news coming in to The Situation Room. CNN has learned a whistleblower has gone to congress with allegations against Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

That the allegation being that he's misusing members of the security detail by having them perform personal errands. Let's bring in our senior diplomatic correspondent Michelle Kosinski. Michelle, what have you found out?

MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN SENIOR DIPLOMATIC CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Wolf. So this whistleblower went to congressional investigators on a key house committee with concerns within the diplomatic security of service over how Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's security is being used.

For example, to pick up Chinese food for him, causing agents to complain that they are basically at times quote Uber Eats with guns, another time picking up the Pompeo family dog from a groomer.

And we saw documentation that somebody on Pompeo's staff asked diplomatic security or DS to pick up his son from the train station. Now under long standing procedures within DS, Pompeo would have to be in the car for these trips and if not there would have to be a specific threat that necessitated them.

So in a carefully worded statement from the State Department that took days to prduce, they didn't deny any of these trips but they said at no time did any member of the Pompeo family ask anybody to do anything that was inconsistent with protection.

But the bigger issue here, Wolf, according to this whistleblower, is that multiple special agents within DS don't understand why Pompeo's wife Susan has a dedicated security detail if her own. They don't believe that long standing procedures were followed, which would be a specific threat assessment to be done within a particular intel office of diplomatic security. And they don't buy that there is enough of the threat to necessitate that.

The State Department pushed back on this. They said that the threat is real against Susan Pompeo. And our sources though say that in the past when diplomatic security was afforded a secretary's wife, it would only be for a very specific threat and for a short period of time.

Furthermore, this whistleblower says that agents were asked to not use her call sign which is shocker over the radios because they quote knew it was not kosher. The State Department vehemently denied that that radio issue took place. And on the issue of Susan Pompeo, they say that an initial threat assessment was done in July of 2018, Wolf.

BLITZER: Michelle Kosinski with that exclusive report for us. So Michelle, thank you very much. Coming up there's more breaking news.

A new CNN poll shows Joe Biden clinging to a narrow lead after dropping ten points. Kamala Harris jumps in to second place, supposedly followed by Elizabeth Warren. So was the first set of debates a game changer?



Happening now, breaking news. Ten point drop. Joe Biden takes a dramatic hit in CNN's exclusive new poll, the first survey since the lead off democratic debate. We're going to breakdown his slide while Kamala Harris ad Elizabeth Warren surge.

Honoring autocrats, President Trump cozies up to Kim Jong-un inside North Korea after getting warm and fuzzy with Vladimir Putin and other strong men at the G20. Tonight, critics are demanding to know.