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Few Options On Iraq; Challenged On Gay Marriage; Education Secretary Calls For Immigration Reform; Violent Clashes At The World Cup
Aired June 13, 2014 - 07:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MAGGIE HABERMAN, "POLITICO": This is a very messy time in that region. This is a totally destabilizing moment. The only person I think who wants to talk about this less than Barack Obama is probably Hillary Clinton who recently in her book for the first time said she was wrong, plain and simple, to vote for the Iraq war. She's going to have to talk about it a bit yesterday at the Council on Foreign Relations how she would deal with it. But she is not going to ahead of the president and she's going to continue to get pressed for answers.
JOHN KING, CNN HOST, "INSIDE POLITICS": Is it inevitable in Washington that we can't have a conversation just about what needs to be done now, what are the best options to help the Iraqi government? Instead you have Republicans saying we told you so, Mr. President. You should have left more troops there when you came into office. Democrats are saying, excuse me? You guys pushed and started this mistake war to begin with.
MOLLY BALL, "THE ATLANTIC": The thing is there is a bit of re- litigating of the Iraq debate going on. Obama probably wins. The tougher debate for him is the what do we do now debate because there are no good options and you have to expect that the administration anticipated on some level that the countries that we are now leaving would descend into chaos and the question is how aggressive do you get and then how much do you tolerate in terms of criticism while riding it out and knowing that there's not an appetite to really go in there in a vigorous way.
KING: Negroponte made a good point, this will impact the president's decision calculation about how many troops to try to leave in Afghanistan when that one draws down.
Let's move on to Hillary Clinton, you mentioned the book to a rollout, earlier in the week we were talking about dead broke, a mistake. She had an interesting conversation yesterday, aired yesterday on NPR. The interviewer trying to get Hillary Clinton to explain her evolution, that's Secretary Clinton's word, on same-sex marriage. A few minutes into the conversation, Secretary Clinton gets a little testy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So that's one for you changed your mind. HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: I have to say, I think you are very persistent, but you are playing with my words and playing with what is such an important issue.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want to clarify so I can understand.
CLINTON: No, I don't think you're trying to clarify. I think you're trying to say that I used to be opposed and now I'm in favor and I did it for political reasons. That's just flat wrong.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Dissect this one for me. Is this somebody who is just pushing, trying to get the answer they want or is this a glimpse of Hillary Clinton who sometimes does get a little snappy?
HABERMAN: I heard from a bunch of Hillary Clinton supporters over the course of yesterday who said they liked what she did. They felt she answered the question, you go, push back. The media is not beloved so people are going to win on that front but I don't think this was a good moment for her and the House think it's an error.
This one, this is a liberal radio show, a liberal host, who is trying to ask a legitimate line of inquiry and if you're going of get that angry or annoyed or whatever word you want to use to describe how she - sounded, this is very early. This is a friendly audience. This is a book rollout. This is the soft launch. She can get some do-overs in a mean team, but you can't go into a presidential campaign sounding mad with your backup.
KING: There is a way to say, well, I thought I did answer your question, but if you don't think I did, let me try this again, more politely than, no, you're not trying to clarify it. She's preaching to the choir here or letting the choir see a little bit, is she rusty or is this her personality?
BALL: She didn't answer the question. We still don't know when she changed her mind. She wouldn't even admit that she did obviously she did change her mind on gay marriage and that's something that people have a right to be interested to know. It reminds people of her principle flaw as a candidate when she ran before, which is that she tends to not be very adept in these situations. And she has an instinct to not want to make anybody angry but that leads to trying to have it both ways or try to triangulate, a word from the '90s.
KING: Another candidate, potential candidate, sometimes we learn a lot from politicians in humorous settings. Here's Chris Christie going through a little bit of hypotheticals.
JIMMY FALLON, HOST, "THE TONIGHT SHOW": Hypothetically.
GOVERNOR CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: Hypothetical.
FALLON: Hypothetically, you run for president. CHRISTIE: OK.
FALLON: Hypothetically. Hypothetically, Hillary Clinton runs for president.
FALLON: Hypothetically, do you think you can beat her?
CHRISTIE: Hypothetically? You bet.
FALLON: In a dance off.
CHRISTIE: That's what I was talking about. What were you talking about?
FALLON: There you go.
KING: Hypothetically in the dance off, I'm just going to leave it alone. I'm going to get back to you guys in New York. Maggie and Molly are better dancers than Chris Christie. That's not a criticism of Chris Christie's dancing skills. It's just a compliment. We'll leave me out of the dancing conversation and, yes --
BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN ANCHOR: I've seen you dance, John King. You're all right. You do OK.
KING: I don't think you have. I don't think you have.
KEILAR: I believe we attended a wedding together and I believe that you have a rug there.
KING: I could just watch that all day. I got some other work to do, but that's pretty funny.
KEILAR: Pretty good. What do you think?
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: I like a man that can move. I'm not going to lie.
KEILAR: Kind of fun.
CUOMO: I think it says something about him, depth to character.
KEILAR: And just putting ourselves out there is good for politics.
KING: Sense of humor does matter in this business.
CUOMO: Absolutely. If you don't laugh at yourself nobody else is going to laugh for you. Take care, John. Have a good weekend, pal.
KEILAR: Next up on NEW DAY, thousands of undocumented kids crossing into the U.S. alone. Now being held in detention centers. What's being done to help them? We'll be hearing from Education Secretary Arne Duncan who is making the strongest comment yet on this.
CUOMO: And things are getting down right dangerous in Brazil. Was holding a multibillion dollar World Cup there a good idea? Our own correspondent was caught up in the violence. We're going to talk to her ahead.
CUOMO: America is known around the world for its compassion especially for children. But you wouldn't know it from the scene playing out in the southwest right now. Thousands of undocumented children shoved in overcrowded holding cells as they wait to be deported. Too many think it's OK because they broke the law.
Now, Education Secretary Arne Duncan is making some of the strongest comments yet by anyone in the administration about the problem. Let's bring in CNN business correspondent chief correspondent, of course, Christine Romans. She just spoke with Duncan. Also with us, CNN correspondent, Polo Sandoval, who is along the Texas border this morning.
Polo, very important to talk to you because we want to know what's really going on there. You're on the ground. Christine, very important that we're getting the administration's take on this. Christine is going to have the full interview with Arne on her own show tomorrow "CNN MONEY." What time is it on?
CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: At 2:00 Eastern.
CUOMO: Let's get a taste of what Arne Duncan is saying here to kind of set the table for where we are at in the situation. Let's hear him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ARNE DUNCAN, EDUCATION SECRETARY: It's brutal. I would say it's inhumane. We have far too many young people across the country who came here 3 months old or 6 months old, played by all the rules and then we say they can't go to college? We're cutting off our nose to spite our face. It makes no sense whatsoever.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CUOMO: It makes perfect sense to people who were saying it's talk like this that are encouraging people to send their kids here illegally and burdening the U.S.
ROMANS: He's talking about the Dream Act. He's talking about immigration reform. A week ago senior administration official told me that they were confident about immigration reform for the end of this president's term and everything turns upside down. Arne Duncan, the education secretary saying, look, we have these kids inside our borders right now and we need to be talking about the Dream Act and immigration reform and not using this as an example to try to scuttle it. CUOMO: But that's exactly what it's become is that the administration is encouraged people to break the law and now you got these kids here and it's a problem. Here's the bigger problem. The kids are now political pawns. Polo, you're down there on the ground. What do we know about the conditions? How many kids? How are they being kept? These allegations we've been hearing about abuse. Are you hearing them as well? Fill us in.
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Chris, you know, this morning this new day is going to bring a new wave of what is expected to be those unaccompanied children. The immigration reform debate is raging. Thousands of miles away, but here along the south Texas/Mexico border this is where really the face of this issue is -- this is where we found it yesterday.
We've been driving up and down the border speaking to people, speaking to some of these people who are essentially crossing the border that you see behind me here. Just yesterday speaking to a 16-year-old boy named, Juan, from El Salvador. He actually made the journey on his own, eventually called an orchard not far from here home for five days. Oranges and murky water from some of the canals.
These are the people essentially trying to make their way from Central America here to the United States. And they're told to go straight to border patrol because they do know based on what we're hearing here directly from these families crossing every day, they do know that they stand a better chance of actually crossing.
Now back to that issue that you discuss there that you mentioned there, Chris, is a lot of these individuals, the kids specifically, they are in holding areas here, detention centers that are already overflowing with activity. About 1,300 people in this sector alone expected to be detained again today. Really about a third of those are unaccompanied minors.
CUOMO: When we say minors, you mentioned a 16-year-old, Polo, but how young are we talking about here unaccompanied?
SANDOVAL: We spoke about two days ago, we actually spent the day driving with some of the law enforcement that patrol this stretch of border here. They tell us they've seen children as young as 4 on their way here. For the most part according to the law enforcement officials that are taking us along the border, is that the smugglers transport these kids in rafts across the river there in the foreground.
Eventually dropping them off on the banks here and told to move north, find the nearest man in uniform, border patrol, police, and ask them, show them a piece of paper that specifically has their family's name, their relatives, and are told this is where my family is and to reach out to them.
CUOMO: Reach out to them for what, Polo, to have them repatriated and sent back or that they have family in the U.S.? What do you mean?
SANDOVAL: You know, there really is a mix here. A lot of these children have to go through a process. Some of them are essentially given refugee status as the immigration process begins. But again, all of these children are still coming into a system that is already overflowing. There are so many children already here in the system. Many have to be kept at military bases. It's an endless cycle.
And again, officials here on the ground are frustrated because they essentially see the face, a lot of these are fathers themselves. Imagine having a 4 or 5 or 6-year-old child essentially going through some of the terrain that we see here, the mosquitos, the heat. It's quite intense. And it really does tug at the heart strings.
But at the same time they are forced to do their job and that is to essentially really enforce the laws including federal immigration laws. Many times it's putting -- it means putting these children into the system that's already overflowing -- Chris.
CUOMO: Polo, thank you very much. Now, Christine, what do we know about what the realities are? It's easy to say send them back.
CUOMO: This isn't Mexico.
ROMANS: This is Central America.
CUOMO: You don't know who their families are.
ROMANS: That's a difference.
CUOMO: We don't have an easy operation, cooperation with these countries.
ROMANS: The issue here is if they are Mexican citizens many times they will be bused or even put on an airplane and sent back to their home states. This is Central America so what happens is the word is out in some of these Central American towns that if you can just get your kid here, they're going to be reunited with their family in the United States and you're going to be given a desk ticket basically to appear before immigration judge.
And then nobody shows up. You know, they're called running tickets. People get the ticket and they don't show up. So ahead of immigration reform, the potential for immigration reform is called amnesty or the ability to get in line for a green card and eventually citizenship. The word on the street in Central America is get your kids here now. It's the best chance you're going to get.
CUOMO: The desperation of a family to send a child alone, you have to think about that and then, what we do with these kids. We are just warehousing them right now. This is one of the most frightening things I've heard in a long time.
ROMANS: Fifty thousand kids this year expected to come across the border, 50,000. The United States government is in this position where they have to figure out how to receive these children and clothe and feed these children and reunite their children with either home to their home country or with their family that's here.
CUOMO: The irony is the pictures we are showing you there, the pictures of the kids are blurry because we don't want to show their faces.
CUOMO: The irony is, we don't want to show you the faces to protect the kids but look at the kids. The kids are crammed in. We wouldn't do this to puppies. We are doing it to human beings. It's OK because they broke the law. That's the situation.
You talk about it amongst yourself. Tweet was the #newday, but you're looking at the reality. I can't think of one that's more ugly than how it's being handled right now. Christine, thank you very much. Polo, thank you for doing the hard work of the reporting. Keep at it.
Let us know about the conditions and what any plans are on the ground of how to deal with these kids. And again, Christine's full interview with Arne Duncan airs tomorrow on "CNN MONEY" at 2:00 p.m. Eastern. Please pay attention to this story. It's not going to get better, it's going to get worse -- Brianna.
KEILAR: Thank you, Chris. Next up on NEW DAY, protests threatened to spoil the World Cup just as it gets under way. Can Brazil handle posting this big event? One of our correspondents actually got caught up in the melee. We'll be taking you there live.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Look like protesters are moving. There's some pushing back. If they shoot this -- got to go.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KEILAR: That was CNN's Shasta Darlington, caught up in the violent protests that have marred the opening of the World Cup in Brazil. More rallies expected today and demonstrators have been sparring with police over the high cost of the games. More than $11 billion spent, which many say should have gone instead to schools, hospitals and public transportation.
Let's bring in Shasta live now from Sao Paulo. Shasta, describe the scene to us that we just saw as you had to run away from police.
DARLINGTON: Brianna, it did catch us off guard a bit because the police were much more aggressive than usual. We've been covering protests for over a year now. It became clear at that point that they really weren't going to let anybody take even one step towards the stadium. We were hit by fragments of stun grenade.
Luckily, I just have a couple stitches. I'm fine. Our producer, Barbara, is back in the hospital. She has a deep gash in her arm. They're monitoring her. We are just hoping for the breast there -- Brianna.
KEILAR: It's very dangerous, these protesters being out there. Tell us a little bit -- we covered it briefly. Tell us a little more about their grievances.
DARLINGTON: Brianna, basically this has been going on for a year now. These are people who feel like the government has spent so much money on this global sporting event, $11 billion, when the country itself still has so many problems. They think that money could have been better spent on schools and hospitals and public transportation.
They just want to make sure the world doesn't forget that, that while everyone is tuning in to watch these games, they also realize and recognize all the problems that Brazil still has. So they say they're going keep up the pressure through this whole month of games so that people don't forget this -- Brianna.
KEILAR: Do you think that police are going to continue now with this sort of step-up of aggression against protesters?
DARLINGTON: Yes, Brianna. From what we saw yesterday, they have a clear mandate that. Is do not let anyone block the fan's entrance to the stadium. We were 11 kilometers from the stadium. We weren't anywhere near it, but the protesters were planning to start marching down one of the main avenues that leads to the arena. As soon as they started getting close, the police moved in, in huge numbers. They were on horseback.
They were obviously in their patrol cars. Riot police decked out in full gear with their batons and shields. They made it very clear that nobody is going to be allowed in any way to impede access to the stadium. I do think that we will see that 62 games. It's a lot of games.
KEILAR: It will be a story we keep following and will be checking in with you. Shasta Darlington in Sao Paulo. Thank you very much -- Chris.
CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY, Bowe Bergdahl, home. We are learning more about why he walked up the post. They are newly released letters where he talks about it. We are going to bring you what is in them.
Plus, complete chaos in Iraq, radical militants are now closing in on Baghdad. They are taking over cities. They are looking to control. The government there asking for help. Will they get it from the U.S. and what will it be? Senator John McCain says he knew this was going to happen and that basically the U.S. did nothing to prevent it. He's going to join us live.
CUOMO: Breaking overnight, Bowe Bergdahl is back, landing in Texas early this morning. Now the next step in his rehabilitation. New questions after new letters he sent while in captivity have surfaced. We are live with the latest. KEILAR: Happening now, the terror group, ISIS, on the move looking to take Baghdad. American contractors are fleeing as the government there asks for help. Will the U.S. provide more support? Senator John McCain will be joining us live.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Then the governor's new groove. Move over Jagger, Chris Christie cuts loose. "The Tonight Show" dance-off you have to see. Plus what he says about a possible match-up with Hillary Clinton.
CUOMO: Your NEW DAY continues right now.
Good morning. Welcome back to NEW DAY. It's a TGIF edition here on June 13th, 8:00 in the east. Kate Bolduan on vacation. Very lucky to have Brianna Keilar. Thank you for joining us. We do have breaking news for you. Overnight, Bowe Bergdahl back on American soil for the first time since being taken prisoner by the Taliban.
The 28-year-old arriving at Brook Army Medical Center in Texas just hours ago. Remember, five years of captivity and abuse in his past. Ahead of him, a long process of recovery and what they call reintegration. CNN's Martin Savidge is in San Antonio with the latest. Good morning, Martin.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Chris. When that plane touched down, and it was in the dead of night here in San Antonio, there was no special greeting. There was no sort of special welcome for Sergeant Bergdahl. Instead, it was just as they had carefully rehearsed. This is all going to be done, the Army says, by the book.