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New President Polls Show Sharp Drop; Obama in Northern Ireland for G8 Summit; Iranians Celebrate New President; Alleged 9/11 Conspirators in Court; Pivotal Witness in Mob Boss Trial; Was Ring Intercepted Or A Gift?; Spurs Beat the Heat; Phil Mickelson Falls Short at U.S. Open; ATF Agents Assisting Colorado Fire Investigation; Supreme Court to Rule on Major Cases

Aired June 17, 2013 - 06:00   ET


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Good rule. All right, guys. We'll see you again soon. Thanks for having us on. It is now very close to the top of the hour, which means it is time for the top news.


CUOMO: This morning, presidential plunge. An exclusive CNN poll has President Obama's approval ratings taking a nose dive. Why do more Americans find him untrustworthy than ever before?

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Spy games. The world leaders arrive in the United Kingdom this morning as news breaks that the last time they met there, their phones and e-mails were hacked.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: And always a bridesmaid. A heart breaking loss for Phil Mickelson now coming in second a record sixth times at the U.S. Open.

CUOMO: Your NEW DAY starts right now.


ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan, and Michaela Pereira.

CUOMO: Boy, oh, boy. I am Chris Cuomo. It's June 17th. It's Monday. It's 6:00 in the East. And just when I thought it couldn't get more excited, you hear James Earl Jones saying your name. Come on, ladies, how much better?

PEREIRA: Does that mean we arrived?

BOLDUAN: That is how I would like to start my day every day. Good morning, everybody. I'm Kate Bolduan. Thank goodness this day is finally here. A little butterflies this morning, but feeling good.

PEREIRA: We ask you all just bear with us because we've got a lot of fancy new digs around us. We're going to have a little bit of fun. Think you might see some of the behind the scenes stuff as we work out the kinks, right? CUOMO: Absolutely. Everything is brand new here, including the show, but also the poll we have this morning, brand new. We're talking about a dramatic shift in the president's numbers as he begins the G-8 Summit in Northern Ireland. President Obama's approval rating dropped eight points since just last month, from 53 percent to 45 percent. The number of people who disapprove of Obama went up 9 percent.

Plus, after a week of revelations about the extent of the NSA's surveillance programs, 43 percent of people questions say that the administration has gone too far when it comes to restricting civil liberties. What does it all mean?

To help us to break it down is John King, CNN's chief national correspondent. John, first and foremost, welcome to NEW DAY. Good to have you with us, brother.

JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning. Glad to see you all.

CUOMO: All right, so we all just went through the numbers there very quickly. The question is how do you explain this drop?

KING: Look, don't overinvest in one poll. Never over invest in one poll, but there are clear flashing danger and warning signs for the president in our new numbers this morning. Chris, Kate and Michaela, number one, let's look at younger people. The president remember back in the election, both elections, the young people have been great for the president. Well, you mentioned the NSA controversy. Young Americans more than anyone concerned about privacy.

They don't like their phones, their e-mails being looked at by the government. Look at these numbers, the president's approval rating among young voters, down 17 points in just a month. That's a huge swing in one month, the disapproval up 16 points. That's a key part of the president's base. That's a big deal.

Now look at independents. Again, the president is going to win Democrats. He needs independents. There's another big one there, 10- point swing in the approval rating right there in just a month. So people as they hear about this, they're concerned. They actually support the idea of the government tracking terrorists.

They think this president might have gone too far, a little too much government, a little big. So if people get to the competence question, can a Democratic president, a president who believes in government as an instrument for good, if people start to doubt that he can effectively manage the government that's trouble.

CUOMO: All right, so let's unpack it one step at a time, John. The first is trustworthiness. No politician wants to take a hit to that, right? Fair point, so what does that mean in context? We're not just talking about policy. We're not saying we don't like the economy. We're not even saying that it's this one program. We don't trust you.

KING: And that becomes a huge problem again for a progressive president who needs to tell people, let me use the government to make your life better. If you don't trust him, his disapproval rating is up and you think government is too big -- 6 in 10 Americans now think government is too big, that he can't manage it effectively. This is like a political version of an underwater mortgage, if you will.

His disapproval is above 50. People don't trust the government. You look at this coming out, is he honest and trustworthy, 49 percent now say yes. That's from 58 percent just last month. So again, he's taking a hit. Something has Americans just stopping and saying, wait a minute. When you're early second term with the midterm elections just around the corner, again, don't over invest in one poll, but if you're president and you know the clock is ticking, that's trouble.

CUOMO: John, it's one thing if just about the NSA, if it's just about a policy, but if it's whether or not he's believable, it makes it very difficult to come back, even though it is one poll. It's going to be interesting to see how the administration comes back. John, thank you very much for helping us unpack it. We'll have you on here plenty on NEW DAY. Thanks, John.

BOLDUAN: Still two hours ago, the president arrived in Northern Ireland for the G-8 summit. This as an explosive report in a British newspaper, "The Guardian," who claims U.K. intelligence officials spied on their allies at two G-20 Summit meetings in London back in 2009. The source for the story is familiar, NSA leaker, Edward Snowden.

Our chief White House correspondent, Jessica Yellin, is traveling with the president. She's joining me now from Ireland. Jessica, welcome to NEW DAY.

JESSICA YELLIN, CNN CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Thanks, Kate. Good morning. It's already a busy day here. Mrs. Obama surprised a crowd of Irish students, introducing her husband before a big speech she just gave on peace. She and the girls made the trip, and they will go to Dublin to see some Obama family history.

As for the big story you just talked about and the president and the latest revelations from "The Guardian," they're certain to put a chill on an already tense set of meetings this afternoon. The report alleges classified documents show the U.S. tried to intercept then Russian President Dmitri Medvedyev's phone calls at the 2009 G-20 Summit.

President Obama is set to meet Russia's current president, Vladimir Putin, this afternoon. They will discuss topics ranging from disagreements over Syria, to Afghanistan, and the fight against terrorism, and this latest report is not going to warm the mood in that room -- Kate.

BOLDUAN: Have you gotten any specific reaction from the administration on this report?

YELLIN: Well, the administration is not commenting directly on the report, but you could argue that "The Guardian" article will take some heat off the U.S. because it alleges that the British were busy in 2009 setting up fake internet cafes to download foreign diplomats' e- mails, accounts, and passwords.

If true, then you know the U.S. isn't alone in its snooping. Now the U.S. says all of these reports are irresponsible and egregious and will damage counterterrorism efforts. But look, all these revelations, all the Snowden news are certain, and the timing of this release are certain to ensure maximum discomfort at the meetings today -- Kate.

BOLDUAN: I would say that as an absolute sure for one thing. Jessica Yellin traveling with the president for us. Jes, thanks so much. No way to such an important summit, totally out what they want to be talking about, major economic issues.

CUOMO: Absolutely, but keep in focus on the issue because it's not going to go away. Let's stay on the issue of surveillance. In that same exclusive CNN poll released just moments ago, it showed most Americans support government surveillance of phone records, 51 percent of those polled say it is right for the government to track Americans' phone calls, 48 percent say it's wrong.

Let's bring in Dana Bash joining us from Capitol Hill, where we're learning new information this morning about just how much information the NSA was given by Apple and Facebook, among other companies. Dana, welcome to NEW DAY. It's great to have you. What's the latest?

DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Thank you. Great to be here. We're told that intelligence agencies might declassify details of thwarted plots as soon as today, Chris, thanks to pressure from lawmakers here who now have to publicly defend these programs that they've secretly been voting on and overseeing for years.


BASH (voice-over): A full court Obama administration press to calm Americans' concerns about secret surveillance programs led by the Republican House Intelligence chairman.

REP. MIKE ROGERS (R-AL), INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: If you can see just the number of cases where we've actually stopped a plot, I think Americans will come to a different conclusion than all the misleading rhetoric I've heard over the last few weeks.

BASH: Intelligence agencies are now working to declassify specifics about dozens of terror plots that the National Security Agency director told Congress the secret service programs helped disrupt. Over the weekend, the government unlocked a teaser. This document naming phone data collection program have helped prevent terror plots, quote, "here in the homeland and in more than 20 countries around the world." Supporters of surveillance programs tried to beat back thoughts that the government is listening to phone calls in the U.S.

ROGERS: It's against the law for the NSA to record and monitor U.S. Americans' phone calls.

BASH: Another supporter, Dick Cheney, someone who rarely agrees with the Obama White House, does on this. The GOP vice president on the day of 9/11 says these programs could have prevented that attack.

DICK CHENEY, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT: I guess I'd ask everybody to pause and don't automatically fold the NSA in with the other stuff that's going on in the Obama administration because this is a program run by professionals. It's done great work. It has saved lives.

BASH: but nay sayers like Colorado Democrat Mark Udall are not giving up.

SEN. MARK UDALL (D-CO), INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: I don't think collecting millions and millions of Americans' phone calls -- this is the metadata, this is time, place, to whom you direct the calls is making us any safer.


BASH: Now Mark Udall is one of several lawmakers who have been pushing in closed, classified setting for years to put more curbs on these programs. He's hoping, now that they've become public, he'll have better luck doing that -- Chris.

CUOMO: Dana, it seems there's a lot of talking around the actual facts here. When are we going to hear, here's what the program's doing, here's what's wrong, here's what justifies Snowden coming out. Here's why he's a patriot and not just a leaker. When will we get the there, there?

BASH: Well, when it comes to declassifying information, which is really how they hope to show the there, there, we'll probably see it as soon as today. The problem that we have, as you well know, is that there are a lot of people inside the intelligence agencies who are not comfortable with revealing anything that's classified, especially on foiled terror plots because they're concerned about revealing sources and methods.

So there's a very big risk, internal debate going on, on just how to do that. But there is pressure on not just lawmakers, but companies you referred to, Apple and others, that says you got to show Americans why we're doing it. We have to prove it. We hope these details will help.

CUOMO: Especially when you have these infamous leaked documents out there. Dana Bash, thank you so much for your reporting. Appreciate it. Great to have on NEW DAY.

BOLDUAN: So much going on with that story. Another big we're watching, there is cautious hope this morning that Iran's new president elected this weekend could help ease relations with the west. The country's new president, Hassan Rowhani, is promising greater personal freedoms for the Iranian people while vowing to free scores of political prisoners and jailed journalists. What does this all mean?

Reza Sayah is live from Abu Dhabi for us this morning. Reza, so really the question for everyone here in the U.S. is what could this mean for tense or nonexistent U.S.-Iranian relations, particularly on the critical issue of the country's nuclear program? What are you hearing?

REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's still way too early to say, Kate, but certainly this is a candidate who's come in and injected some optimism and hope that maybe Iran can improve its relations with the west. Coming into this campaign, many thought that this was a sham election, that the supreme leader and the hard line establishment had set the stage for one of their loyalists to come in and win.

But in comes Hassan Rowhani, a dark horse, he very tactfully, passionately starts criticizing the regime, starts calling for improved relations with the west, and the opposition movement, the reformists responded to him. They came out in mass. He not only won, he trounced the field.

However, he's not going to be able to change things by in the end, the big man in charge in Iran who decides everything about the nuclear program is the supreme leader, and he's the final decider, certainly some optimism in Iran after this win.

BOLDUAN: Yes, some optimism in a country where there -- it doesn't seem to be much quite often. Reza Sayah, thanks so much. As you know, we're going to be speaking to Christiane Amanpour on much more on this and other topics. There's a lot of international news going on right now, big news with big implications for the U.S.

CUOMO: Just because it seems like it's far away, always has implications with what we do here at home.

BOLDUAN: The Iranian nuclear program especially, absolutely.

CUOMO: A very busy morning day as Kate said. So let's get to Michaela Pereira with the stories that are developing right now.

PEREIRA: Good morning to both of you. Making news this morning, the man known as the principal architect of the September 11th attacks in war court today, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four suspected co- conspirators are expected to appear in a Guantanamo Bay courtroom. The pre-trial motions could take much of the week and the motion to dismiss because of military commissions changes. Critics says those changes don't guarantee a fair trial.

A hit man and key witness testifying today against mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger. The two, once very tight, will meet face to face for the first time in 31 years. John Martorano's testimony could be pivotal. He's expected to describe murders they allegedly committed together. Bulger as you recall is charged in the murders of 19 people along with corruption and racketeering charges.

So was the Super Bowl ring intercepted or was it a gift? A spokesman for the New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft now says he was just spinning a yarn for laughs when he said Russian President Vladimir Putin swiped his bling. Putin's spokesman says it was a gift and called Kraft's story weird. You can count us having much more on this in our next hour. Miami Heat heading home, facing elimination in the NBA finals. Last night, the Spurs took a 3-2 lead in the series with a 114-104 win. The Spurs start of the season, the Spur's Manu Ginobili knocked down 24 points. Tuesday night, game six in Miami. Chris, pop the popcorn. A game is happening.

Take a look at this, a shocked teenager in Washington State grabbing her phone when she saw a bear run past her car. We've got a foot pursuit, people. The 18-year-old Daniela Matthews used some pretty colorful language, which we bleeped out, while she was in hot pursuit. The bear jumped a fence in a neighbor's yard. By the time Animal Control arrived on scene, that bear was g-o-n-e. I don't know. I guess, I wasn't in that car. I don't think I'd be chasing after a bear.

Can I tell you? I did this. There was a coyote in my neighborhood a couple of months ago. I have no idea why I decided to chase it out of the area with my car.

BOLDUAN: How did it end?

PEREIRA: I'm slightly embarrassed I just told that on national television. It just was instinct. I was going to place a citizen's arrest.

CUOMO: I'll take chasing the bear rather than the other way around.

PEREIRA: The bear chasing you? Any day.

CUOMO: Story of the morning, sports, but important to get that deja vu all over again for golf's Phil Mickelson Sunday at the U.S. Open. The man known as lefty, the fan favorite, coming so close as he has so many times before. Mickelson finished two shots behind the winner, England's Justin Rose, kudos to him. Beautiful round played by him.

Good enough to tie for second for Michelson, and that's great. This is a record sixth time he's been runner-up. Of course, in sports, you want to be number one. CNN's Rachel Nichols has more on this.


RACHEL NICHOLS, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Second, not a bad word in itself. Perfectly respectable, but in this place, at this sporting event, for this man, it is the very definition of anguish. And on Sunday, when Phil Mickelson finished runner-up at the U.S. Open for a record sixth time, it was almost too much to take.

PHIL MICKELSON, 6-TIME RUNNER-UP AT U.S. OPEN: For me, it's very heartbreaking. This could have been the big -- a really big turnaround for me and how I look at the U.S. open, the tournament that I'd like to win after having so many good opportunities.

NICHOLS: In 2006, Mickelson led this tournament heading into the final hole, then hit his driver into the roof of a nearby tent, followed by a shot straight into a tree. This year he started the week in California, attending his daughter's eighth grade graduation. He then hopped a cross-country red eye, went straight to the course, and teed off for his opening round on no sleep.

So when Michelson went into Sunday, Father's Day, with the lead here once again, even eventual winner Justin Rose thought a Mickelson win was fated.

JUSTIN ROSE, 2013 U.S. OPEN CHAMPION: He really showed the true spirit of father hood, being at home for his father's graduation earlier in the week, and putting the tournament as his second priority. That's very admirable. So, I feel for him.

NICHOLS: It wasn't just Father's Day. Sunday was Mickelson's birthday, his 43rd, a reminder of his dwindling chances here. More salt in an already open wound.

MICHELSON: This is toughest for me because at 43 and coming so close five times, it would have changed the way I looked at this tournament. If I never get the open, then I look back, and I think that -- every time I think of the U.S. open, I just think of heart break.


CUOMO: Look, he's won his majors. I love Lefty. I believe he's such a great competitor, and you saw how he went to see his kid's graduation first. You want to be first. It's things to be second. But he's no joke, he's a real deal.

BOLDUAN: As the great philosophers of Journey would say, don't stop believing.

PERIERA: You just quoted Journey.


BOLDUAN: -- you start Monday morning. Good morning, everyone.

Coming up next on NEW DAY, new twist in the worst wildfires if Colorado history. Were they caused by an arsonist?

CUOMO: Plus, is this man who's lived in Minnesota for decades a former Nazi leader? One report says yes, but the family fighting back.


CUOMO: Welcome back, everybody. To NEW DAY, our first day. I'm Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan, Michaela Pereira. It looked like Christmas. We've got red and green for you this morning.

BOLDUAN: Merry Christmas in June.

CUOMO: Let's bring in Christine Romans. She has all the business news that we need to know. Good morning.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning. It is "Money Time". Let's talk about Google's full story this morning. Google taking its technology to the stratosphere. It's releasing 30 high tech hot air balloons to bring Wi-Fi to people who aren't connected. It's just a trial right now, about 60 people in New Zealand had an special antenna put in their homes which will pick up the signal from the balloon.

Another big story morning. Ford is going old school after finding touch screens too difficult for people to use. So, it's bringing back buttons and knobs on the dashboard. I kid you not.

"The Wall Street Journal" says some people had such a difficult time using touch screens in cars that it was dragging down Ford's quality scores. So, you might start finding knobs and dials again.

BOLDUAN: That's fine with me.

So, real quick, how are stocks shaping up the morning?

ROMANS: Futures up 100 points. It could be a nice, nice start to the day, start of the week this week. Your 401(k) took a hit last week. We think it should start the week pretty well today.

BOLDUAN: Just from our NEW DAY family to you, America, money time. Christine, thanks so much.

A very serious story coming out of Colorado, something we've been following since last week. Investigators now suspect arson in the massive black forest wildfire in central Colorado. The 16,000 acres that have burned so far are now considered a crime scene. Agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and explosives are now assisting state fire officials with the investigation. Lots of questions surrounding just how this began.

CNN's George Howell is there joining us live from Colorado Springs. George, of course, welcome to NEW DAY.

But to the serious news, how is it looking? What are you learning this morning?

GEORGE HOWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kate, good morning. Yes, an arson investigator is here, along with other officials. And arson is of the many possibilities that they're looking into, as they consider this area a crime scene. Now, there is some good news, though.

Just yesterday we got this update it's now at 65 percent containment. That's great news, and we got that just after a big rain shower. So, we could see that number go up again today. The focus right now, Kate, is for these firefighters to hold the perimeter, and go into the fire, find any hot spots, and put them out.

BOLDUAN: And, George, you're talking about 65 percent containment. That's a big jump from over the weekend. Weather was not cooperating last week. Is it weather, or were the firefighters just finally able to get in front of it?

HOWELL: Well, you know, it was a combination of both. So, on Friday, we got this big rain shower, and then Saturday, the same. That helped with firefighters because that's when they were going in. They were putting out many of those hot spots. They're making a lot of progress.

And, Kate, the hope is that more rain comes here today, maybe in the next day or so. That will help him to put this fire out.

BOLDUAN: Put the fire out, and then the investigation continues. George Howell on top of it for us -- thanks so much, George.

CUOMO: All right. If you care about the Defense of Marriage Act or affirmative action, it could be a huge, even historic day at the Supreme Court. Justices are about to rule on some controversial and divisive cases that could redefine what it means to be an American.

CNN's crime and justice correspondent Joe Johns is in D.C. with more.

Joe, I'm welcoming everybody this morning. Thanks for being on NEW DAY with us on this first day.


This is the Supreme Court back in the middle of America's culture wars. Four big cases, three big issues here before the Supreme Court, including affirmative action, whether it's OK to use race in admissions at colleges, the Voting Rights Act, whether the 1965 Voting Rights Act is a thing of the past, and two huge gay rights cases, the Defense of Marriage Act and Proposition 8 in California.

These are all issues right on the fault lines of red state and blue state America. These decisions could come out between anywhere now and the end of the month. Certainly, a lot of anticipation here, Chris.

CUOMO: All right. Joe, thank you very much. Obviously, always a little bit of a mystery about which cases will be decided. But there's a lot on the table here. It's not just another day, Kate, where these decisions are just legal. They're going to have an effect on everyday life.

BOLDUAN: There have been two major decisions with major rulings coming out of the Supreme Court. It's just an amazing time at the Supreme Court and for all Americans.

Let's now get to our Indra Petersons in the weather center for what you need to know before you head out the door this fine morning. Hey there, Indra.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Good morning. Let's start out with the good news, right? I mean, it's been Colorado. They deserve it. It's been so tough for them. Forecast of thunderstorms again.

Look what's it's doing for them. Relative humidity (ph) up to 53 percent in the overnight hours. That's amazing. They've had days of single digit humidities. Now, of course, we're going to see that drop in the afternoon to the 20s, but the teens and we're not looking at critical fire danger unfortunately yet.

What we are going to be watching is a ridge of high pressure building in by Wednesday. They're actually low in California. When those get close to each other, we are going to have the chance for stronger winds.

But again, we have until Wednesday to get there. So, hopefully, we get some rain the next several days, and we can recover up until then.

Then, let's go from the good to the bad. Yes, the Northeast. It feels like a Monday today. Kind of gloomy, not too much rain, a 30 percent chance for scattered showers.

Let's go from good to the real bad. We're talking about the Southeast. That's where it's really gloomy. They're going to be talking about one to two inches of rain today, pretty ugly out there and, of course, across the Plains. That's where we're going to have our severe threat for weather.

Of course, that is beautiful there. We're talking about the local weather. That is at the bottom of your screen.

BOLDUAN: Do you remember what we talked about? You can only bring good news on a Monday?


PETERSONS: Got a little better, and then it went bad.

BOLDUAN: That's a good try.

CUOMO: Indra having her hands tied by the truth.

BOLDUAN: Exactly, it's so unfortunate.

PERIERA: Indra having my back being from the West Coast.


BOLDUAN: Don't worry. We're still here for you.

CUOMO: We respect it. Team is together. It's feeling good. It's feeling good.

PERIERA: It is feeling good.

CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY: a 95-year-old Minnesota man accused of being a former Nazi commander. Family members insist he is no Nazi dad.

BOLDUAN: Amazing story.

And what do you do when a 30-foot long, 50,000 pound whale shark comes cruising alongside your boat? You'll hear from a Florida teen who decided to do maybe a not smart thing.

CUOMO: The words run away come to mind.

BOLDUAN: Did not compute in this boy's mind.

CUOMO: Run away from the whale shark.