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NEW DAY

Rove Questions Clinton's Health; Opera Singer Battles Back After Stroke; 9/11 Memorial Museum set to Open; Beyonce's Sister Brawls in Elevator

Aired May 14, 2014 - 08:30   ET

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


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Kevin Madden, good to see you, my friend.

KEVIN MADDEN, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Good to see you, Chris.

CUOMO: She wasn't in the hospital 30 days. She was in the hospital three days.

MADDEN: Right.

CUOMO: There are no special TBI glasses. I mean, I hate that I'm -- this is working. It's working because I'm talking to you about it, but hopefully we use the opportunity to condemn when someone has gone too far. Can you defend what he said?

MADDEN: Well, look, I think it was a rather awkward, and as you pointed out, it was an erroneous statement that he made. But I don't think it was an intentional one designed to in any way bring Hillary Clinton's health into the conversation in a negative way. I think it was a very awkward attempt at making a pretty obvious point, which is that non-candidates, which Hillary Clinton technically is, they don't get a level of scrutiny that official candidates in a 2016 race might get.

And that when you do enter into a race, that level of scrutiny requires that you have to answer some tough questions that you haven't answered in the past about your health, about your finances, about past statements. So I think if anything, Karl Rove was making a point that should Hillary Clinton decide or even going through the stages of deciding, these are the type of things that she's going to have to consider as she looks at a prospective 2016 campaign.

CUOMO: What -- take the other side, Tracy.

TRACY SEFL, SENIOR ADVISOR TO READY FOR HILLARY: There's several truths here. The first is, at any point in the election cycle, a lie from Karl Rove is a lie from Karl Rove. That's -- that's what we're talking about here.

The other truth are that there continue to be over the years, over these election cycles, when Karl Rove engages in one of his fiendish tricks, there's a positive correlation between how others react to that. And what I mean is, you have continuing, growing, strong and earnest support for Hillary Clinton that in these past few days has only continued to grow. This weekend, for example, she released a wonderful excerpt from her memoir, a very warm, poignant conversation about being a mother, being a daughter. And that's the Hillary Clinton that people respond to. When Karl Rove attacks, that enthusiasm for her only grows. These are the truths that we're dealing with.

CUOMO: Hoisted on one's own petard. A petard is a bomb that you strap on and then it blows up before you wound up doing the damage that you wanted to do. Is this going to be a situation like that, do you think, Kevin?

MADDEN: Well, look, I think as Tracy points out, this is what Democrats like. They like to run against a -- as they'd say, a fiendish character like Karl Rove. They like to engender a lot of sympathy, not only in their base, but among some of those voters that haven't yet made up their mind.

So I think the reason that we're talking about this today has less to do with whether or not some of the facts related to Hillary Clinton's health. It has to do with the fact that now while Hillary Clinton is not an official candidate, her organization and her supporters, they're acting like one. They seized on this as an opportunity to drive a contrast with someone like Karl Rove, to express some outrage and maybe engender some sympathy for Hillary Clinton.

And also, you know, late yesterday afternoon, some Democrat organizations were raising money on this by pointing out that Karl Rove is up to his old tricks again. So, if anything, you're seeing a Democrat machine that does support Hillary Clinton uses this as an opportunity.

CUOMO: Raising money on this. Is that worse than raising money on Benghazi, Kevin Madden? Well, say --

MADDEN: Oh, I am not - I am not judging it. I think that when political organizations feel that they have a message to get out to supporters, and that that support can come in terms of money or whether it's voicing their opinion of support, I think that's all part of the political system.

CUOMO: The point is, no party has the market cornered when it comes to dirty tricks. This seems to be one playing out right now.

But let me ask you this, Tracy, is this the price of you guys playing this game of not committing to the election? You know, if you don't come out and just say, yes, of course, we're running, you are going to start taking more pot shots because people think you're getting a pass.

SEFL: Well, there is no game being played here. This is a serious and earnest effort to mobilize millions of supporters of Hillary Clinton so that if she does decide to run, she has that army of support behind her immediately. That's not a game. That's a very serious and earnest attempt to be prepared for what obviously is going to be a tough election cycle should she decide to run. The substance of Karl Rove's lies are so offensive and so deeply insulting on so many levels that if anyone's playing a game it's him. And in this case, it's backfiring. And I'm glad to be able to say that as emphatically as many believe.

CUOMO: As I let you guys go, any idea of when you will announce that she's running and make the campaign official?

MADDEN: Yes, Tracy, make some news.

SEFL: Hillary Clinton will definitely have the opportunity to speak about her forthcoming book. I know I'm really looking forward to reading it, if her excerpt on Mother's Day was any indication. It's going to be a tremendous read. She has a tremendous story to tell. And she has tremendous gifts to offer to this country.

CUOMO: That wasn't even close to an answer to my question, Tracy.

MADDEN: Not answer.

CUOMO: But it was very good pushing the book. You see both parties can play the game very well.

Kevin Madden -

SEFL: I'm looking forward to that book. I've got to say. I have reason (ph) to talk about it.

CUOMO: Of course you're looking forward to it. You're working for Hillary's PAC.

MADDEN: So are Democrat - so are Republican opposition researchers, Tracy.

CUOMO: We're all - we're all going to read that.

SEFL: Ready for Hillary is a completely independent super PAC. We're not working for Hillary Clinton, we're supporting her.

CUOMO: We're all going to play -- we're all going to read the book. We're all going to read the book. But the point is, we want the game to be played better and more fairly than in has been in the past. That's why we're trying to check Karl Rove. That's why we want Hillary to commit. Let's try and keep the games to a minimum.

Tracy, Kevin -

SEFL: Let's talk about that in our book club.

CUOMO: Yes. Great. I'll see you at the book club. Thank you very much to both of you.

Kate.

MADDEN: Great to be with you. KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Now to this week's "Human Factor." Opera singer Eric Jordan had a soaring career with the Metropolitan Opera in New York when a stroke nearly ended it until he fought back. Here's CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ERIC JORDAN, STROKE NEARLY ENDED CAREER: Every time I sing, my soul is bared.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): When he had a stroke a year-and-a-half ago, opera singer Eric Jordan's ability to bear his soul to sing was stifled. 5:30 a.m., the morning of the stroke. Eighteen-month-old Gabrielle (ph) crawls into bed with his parents. Then everyone goes back to sleep, except Eric.

CHRISTINA ARETHAS, ERIC JORDAN'S WIFE: He never stopped kind of moving around and jerking around. Then I realized, there is something wrong.

GUPTA: Then, the moving around stopped abruptly.

ARETHAS: I slapped him. He wouldn't wake up.

GUPTA: Later at the hospital, doctors removed three large clots in Eric's brain, saving Eric's life and his ability to sing. Only eight weeks after his stroke, the base was back on stage at New York's Metropolitan Opera.

JORDAN: This is a very magical house.

GUPTA: Eric says that recovering from a stroke has forced him to slow down and to savor life's small blessings and to accept this new version of himself.

JORDAN: How you change the way that you look at something helps you change yourself.

GUPTA: Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, reporting.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BOLDUAN: Sanjay, thank you so much.

Coming up next on NEW DAY, the long-awaited 9/11 Museum finally set to open. We'll have a special look inside the experience, solemn and striking, no doubt, carved into the footprint of the fallen towers.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BOLDUAN: Welcome back to NEW DAY.

President Obama and the first lady are heading to New York in advance of Thursday's long-awaited opening of the National September 11th Memorial Museum at Ground Zero. We've got a sneak peek inside the museum, which chronicles that day, the lives lost and the heroes that emerged. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOE DANIELS, CEO, 9/11 MEMORIAL & MUSEUM: These tridents were from the north tower. They were covered in the aftermath of the attacks. We brought them back here and basically built the museum all around them.

BOLDUAN (voice-over): Nearly 13 years after terrorists destroyed the twin towers, killing almost 3,000 people, the 9/11 Memorial Museum is set to open. A commemoration of the day America changed forever.

BOLDUAN (on camera): You're not whitewashing it. This is the raw, dirty material.

DANIELS: Exactly. I mean this is the steel that bore the attacks.

BOLDUAN (voice-over): The museum is built almost entirely underground, some 70 feet down. It sits in the precise footprint of the World Trade Center.

DANIELS: So this is exactly where the south tower started and went up 1,350 feet.

BOLDUAN: A striking display of the sheer scale of the destruction with poignant reminders of the tragedy at every turn.

BOLDUAN (on camera): I mean this -- this is unbelievable.

DANIELS: This is actually the front of this fire truck. This is the cab.

BOLDUAN: You wouldn't know.

DANIELS: Wouldn't know. And it's completely burned out and destroyed.

BOLDUAN (voice-over): Then there's the retaining wall that remarkably held strong, even when the towers fell.

DANIELS: When the towers came down, all that debris that was here right in this space provided bracing for that wall. And when that debris was clear, there was a big concern that the wall would breach, would flood lower Manhattan.

BOLDUAN (on camera): It could have been so much worse. But this wall held under all of that pressure.

BOLDUAN (voice-over): Visitors will also walk alongside the survivor stairs.

DANIELS: Used by hundreds of people as the buildings are crumbling, running from the dust cloud to escape to safety. And it's for all our visitors to understand the story of survival.

BOLDUAN: And likely one of the most emotional stops in the museum, this art installation mimics the blue sky on that fateful morning. Behind it, the still unidentified remains of 9/11 victims. The move met with mixed emotion from their families. DANIELS: A still shocking statistic is that 1,100 family members never got any human remains back to bury. Never got to go through the ritual of laying their loved ones to rest. It's not a public space at all. Only family members are allowed back behind the wall.

BOLDUAN: Right next door, a room dedicated to the lives of those lost.

BOLDUAN (on camera): Adjacent to this is the reflection room, which is so important, and why we can't show it and won't show it is because the families get to see it first.

DANIELS: Exactly. That room is an area called "In Memoriam." And it's a photographic portrait of each and every one of the 2,983 victims. You see pictures, a father coaching his son's little league team, a wedding. You see the lives that were lost that day. And not just about how they died, it's who these people were.

BOLDUAN (voice-over): Throughout the museum, chilling reminders of the day. Handmade flyers for the missing. A cross emerging from the wreckage. Everyday items simply left behind.

DANIELS: We help, through these artifacts and images, tell that story of just -- it was panic and people were getting out as fast as they could.

BOLDUAN (on camera): And it - it's not just the shoes. It tells -- the shoes worn by this woman, Linda, I mean you're telling everything about that day.

BOLDUAN (voice-over): And while the museum is vast, one small exhibit has been the biggest source of controversy. Its focus, the terrorists themselves, including a film criticized for not making a clear enough distinction between Islam and al Qaeda.

BOLDUAN (on camera): There's been a lot of criticism. Why give any time to the terrorists?

DANIELS: You know, it's one way to look at it is, you don't build a Holocaust museum and not be very clear that the Nazis were the ones who committed those atrocities. Al Qaeda was an extremist, terrorist group that essentially bastardized that religion for their own purposes. But no one will come through this exhibit and in any way think that we are indicting an entire religion, which we in no way are.

BOLDUAN: It seems very appropriate that you end here, at the last column (ph).

DANIELS: And it's, again, goes right back to resiliency, seeing those messages of hope and remembrance on this very tall column that's still standing strong.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BOLDUAN: And that last column, of course, is the last piece of steel really standing after the towers fell. The president, the first lady, they're going to tour the museum. They're going to go through the experience before the president's expected to speak at this dedication ceremony. That's tomorrow. And then it opens to the general public next week.

LEMON: As a sort of jaded New Yorker, you feel you've seen everything. I cannot wait to see this. And you said take your time.

BOLDUAN: Take your time. They estimate on average it will take people -- visitors about two hours to make it through the museum. It's a huge amount of space. You should take a lot of time. And you'll be surprised, I venture to guess, what triggers emotions that will come back.

LEMON: To me, I think it will be the jumpers. I mean even the planes going -- I know it's terrible. People hate to see those planes, but the jumpers. We don't show that on television.

BOLDUAN: And that is included in the museum. It's a very difficult thing and they said it was a difficult decision, what to show and not.

They do show the video of people jumping from the towers. It is hidden behind a wall. You need to make a conscience effort to go see it if you want to, because they understand the sensitivities. But they thought that it was important to show what people -- what the position was that people were put in, and had to make that decision. There's warnings throughout.

CUOMO: People have very different reactions, you know.

BOLDUAN: Absolutely.

CUOMO: For you, you're on it with fresh eyes. You didn't have to cover it at that time being down in Philly. But those who lived through it, the families, they're going to have one set of feelings, especially if they're waiting for remains and now they're in some museum instead of in their private possession.

And for those who lived it, it will be interesting to me to see what the -- what the approach is for people. I've been down there several times. It's gone through several times of development and stoppage. But it is very powerful. There's nothing else that we as a nation have experienced like it.

LEMON: Yes.

CUOMO: And it will be interesting to see who is going. You know? And what the takeaway is from it. They have put a lot of thought into it.

BOLDUAN: And there is also a museum, you realize -- that there isn't a museum like it or an experience like it, where there is such a collective connection to it. And it does feel so real because everyone did live through it in some way.

Some of the artifacts you will -- I'll tell you, you'll be surprised what hits you -- seeing the eyeglasses that were -- burned. That really hit me. Because there's -- my husband -- my husband, before I met him, he had to -- when -- he had to flee from the Deutsche Bank building. That was the story, he had to leave his eyeglasses behind and never recovered it. And it's just one of those things that triggers a memory and emotion.

CUOMO: It's tough for someone who has to live through it. When we first went to see the first iteration of it when we looked at the wall of the missing, three of my pals were still up there. So you never know what it's going to be. But it was important they took the time to do it.

BOLDUAN: And in general everyone can -- it opens to the general public next week.

CUOMO: Check it out for yourself.

We're going to take a quick break here on NEW DAY. We'll see you back after the commercial.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: You know, this is a fight that the Internet just can't stop talking about. Really, everybody can't stop talking about it. A security video showing Beyonce's sister, Solange, allegedly attacking Jay-Z in an elevator and now the elite New York hotel where the video was taken says it is investigating how it was leaked.

I want to bring in now Michael Fazio, he's the author of "Concierge Confidential" and Christopher John Farley is a senior editor at the "Wall Street Journal". OK, does anybody know what happened here? Michael -- first to you.

CHRISTOPHER JOHN FARLEY, "WALL STREET JOURNAL": I've got to rain on the parade a little bit here because, you know, I don't know what happened in the elevator. What's more, I don't care. I think the core of the story is not really a story. And the real story really is -- and we're going to see more and more stories of this sort based on surveillance videos, the cameras everywhere these days and even the media needs to do a better job deciding what a story really is, and whether it's worth doing segments and stories and investigations about it.

LEMON: But I think it's a story -- I have to disagree with you. I think it's a story because of the interest. That's all anyone is talking about. You can mention any other story and they'll say what do you think happened on that elevator with Beyonce?

FARLEY: But people are interested in pornography too, and we don't always cover that. And that is what the story is about. Donald Sterling is a story.

LEMON: But that doesn't mean it's newsworthy.

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: You have celebrities in an elevator fighting. CUOMO: You're here right now to talk about it.

BOLDUAN: It's part of the problem.

FARLEY: I think there are things around the story that may be newsworthy. For example, hotel security -- I mean --

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: The video -- you have two of the biggest stars in the world in an elevator with a sister who is pummeling the husband. That -- you're going to tell me that's not newsworthy? Come on, brother.

FARLEY: Yes, I'm going to say it's not newsworthy.

LEMON: You're crazy.

FARLEY: And here's why.

CUOMO: Tell us why.

BOLDUAN: He's crazy.

FARLEY: Again -- we're going to see more and more stories of this sort where people have hotel surveillance of people, where they have found camera footage, drop cams everywhere. And what about that story is newsworthy? We'll never know what really happened between Solange and Beyonce.

CUOMO: Do you mean newsworthy, or do you mean how it is procured?

MICHAEL FAZIO, AUTHOR: How it is procured, without a doubt.

FARLEY: No. We get to what aspect is newsworthy. The family dysfunction, if there is any, I don't think that's a story. The story about how this affects maybe Jay-Z and Beyonce's upcoming tour, maybe that's a story. The story about how it affects Solange's launch of her own solo career, maybe that's a story.

BOLDUAN: All right. Michael you get to --

(CROSSTALK)

BOLDUAN: We've got to talk about that aspect of the other part of the story, which is how this was procured and what a problem this could be for the Standard Hotel.

FARLEY: That's the story.

FAZIO: The Standard is immune, because it's Andre Balazs. But the thing is that, you know --

CUOMO: Andre Balazs is the developer and proprietor of the Standard Hotel.

BOLDUAN: Very famous. FAZIO: He is just as famous as the famous people who stay in his hotels. I think that the problem here, as we become more attracted and celebrities become more attracted to these cool, trendy places, we have to remember that it's still hospitality and you don't cross the line. And even though it's casual and cool and everybody is really hip, you still have to abide by those hospitality standards where what happens in the hotel stays in the hotel. It's for insiders.

BOLDUAN: What does the Standard need to do? Because --

CUOMO: Money. Money is why they're releasing the tape. Somebody got their hands on the tape.

BOLDUAN: What should the Standard do? How do they respond to the problem?

FAZIO: There is not a culture of service there, maybe. Maybe -- you know, this doesn't always happen in these iconic legacy brands like the Ritz Carlton or the Four Seasons where plenty of stuff is going on in the elevator there, as well.

LEMON: Right. That's the thing. I don't think it will affect the Standard -- because now the Standard will be the last place that anything is leaked. I think that they will make sure of that now.

BOLDUAN: Absolutely.

FAZIO: We're already its insider.

BOLDUAN: How do you do that? Because there is the incentive, the money --

FAZIO: Because it -- you know what -- it starts with remembering that we're in hospitality and it's a culture of service.

CUOMO: Think about where you put cameras also, maybe.

FAZIO: Well, the cameras need to be there just in case. The thing is this was a breach of security. My God the only people who have access to view that are security guards in the hotel.

BOLDUAN: This is not going to be hard to find out who did it.

FAZIO: Well, I'm not a detective, but I think it will be pretty easy.

CUOMO: It's going to be hard.

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: He'll have to fire some people to get it out take up the backlash.

Do you think that the Donald Sterling story isn't a story because of how the tape was procured?

FARLEY: No, it doesn't have to do with how it was procured. It has to do with what the tape was about. About racism, he's the owner of a team. In this particular case, the distribution --

CUOMO: The private lives of celebrities isn't newsworthy now?

FARLEY: Let me finish this. I think people are interested in this story because Beyonce has done a great job of keeping people out. She's able to release a whole album and we didn't know it until the album came out. And so now there is this tape --

CUOMO: Christopher they're interested in --

BOLDUAN: That doesn't mean that they're --

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: We're all feeling --

CUOMO: They're interested because there was a fight on the elevator --

LEMON: Yes -- big stars.

CUOMO: -- and it was caught on tape.

LEMON: That's the interest.

(CROSSTALK)

FARLEY: It was an attack -- it wasn't a fight.

LEMON: What the heck set Solange off. That's the story.

FARLEY: And I'm saying we're going to see more and more things like this and just because it's a hash tag doesn't necessarily mean it's worthy of talking about that much.

LEMON: But it's not the hash tag. People are interested. I want to know, everyone wants to know, what set Solange off? What is going on in her world? Does she have issues? How is it going to affect her career?

FARLEY: I don't care what's going on in her world.

LEMON: You don't. But everybody else does.

FARLEY: I care about the launch of her solo career.

LEMON: I don't care about the launch of her career at all.

(CROSSTALK)

FARLEY: I don't care what's going on in Solange's world. I really don't.

CUOMO: You're placing a high bar that is clearly not observed, certainly by the entertainment media, but the media overall.

FARLEY: A high bar saying I don't care about Solange's career? That's actually a low bar.

CUOMO: No, a high bar saying I don't care about a fist fight involving Beyonce's sister and her husband.

LEMON: Right. What happens about Solange's career --

BOLDUAN: Oh my God, you did it.

LEMON: -- because you said Solange. About Solange's career -- is that that is all PR-driven. This is a very real moment that makes people care about it. Her career is going to -- the album is going to drop here. How do we do this? Where do we have to get her in order to promote this album? We all get that.

BOLDUAN: Don, let's ask it this way. Michael --

FAZIO: Yes.

BOLDUAN: -- as not a member of the media, as -- from your position, watching this, do you think, aside from the Standard Hotel aspect of this, is it news? Do you find it interesting? Worthy of discussing or knowing more about?

FAZIO: OK. The truth, not really and I'll tell you why -- because the people who are really famous in that elevator behaved beautifully. Why -- because they're professionals.

LEMON: Yes. Yes.

FAZIO: You know what -- I worked in hotels long enough to know, when they're in the lobby, they know that they're on camera. When they're in the elevator, when they're in the hallway, they know they're on camera. And that's why they book three rooms on three different floors, all the decoy rooms. What happens in their room, we really don't know unless, you know, housekeeping plants a (inaudible).

LEMON: It says a lot about who those people are, the way they reacted. It really does.

FAZIO: Very poised.

FARLEY: And I'm going to continue keeping my bar not caring about Solange's career --

BOLDUAN: You fight until the end.

FARLEY: The very low bar, most Americans I think will agree with that.

LEMON: I should have said it that way. It's not that I don't care, it's just that's all PR-driven. And when you see a very real moment, that happens, oh, they've broken --

BOLDUAN: And we can go back to the --

CUOMO: To be very clear, I like your bar. I wish it were the reality. But I don't know that people agree with you. We'll see on their reactions.

BOLDUAN: Keep doing chin-ups to try to stay at that bar.

CUOMO: I wish it were the truth and I wish I didn't have to cover it. Christopher, Mr. Fazio.

BOLDUAN: Thanks Christopher.

FARLEY: Thank you.

FAZIO: Thank you, that was good.

CUOMO: Coming up, rescuers are frantically right now trying to find hundreds of people trapped underground after a mine disaster in Turkey.

The "NEWSROOM" will be back with the latest on that right after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)