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@THISHOUR WITH BERMAN AND MICHAELA
Tropical Storm Arthur Creeps Along; Clashes in Jerusalem; Water Fills Plane In Flight; Immigration Protests in California Over Bussed Immigrants; Poll: Obama Worst President Since WW2
Aired July 2, 2014 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN CO-ANCHOR: Tropical Storm Arthur is creeping up along the Florida coast, the latest on where it is heading.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN CO-ANCHOR: Then, water pouring down from the ceiling of a plane in flight, we will speak with someone who was on board during this bizarre wash out.
PEREIRA: Then bogus charges, imagine getting billed for texting services that you didn't buy. That's what one cell phone carrier is accused of doing.
BERMAN: Hello there, everyone. I'm John Berman.
PEREIRA: And I'm Michaela Pereira. Good to see you on this Wednesday. Those stories and much more, right now, @ THIS HOUR.
We have gotten another weather advisory on the tropical storm, Arthur. The storm is expected to become a Category 1 hurricane tomorrow off the coast of North Carolina.
BERMAN: If you were planning to travel over the Fourth of July weekend to the East Coast or along the East Coast, you need to pay attention to this. Arthur could make conditions very, very dangerous.
Chad Myers at the CNN Weather Center, Chad, as we head, a new advisory in just seconds ago. What does it say?
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: It still has the storm very close to the Carolina coast, to North Carolina, almost the peninsula that sticks out there, Cape Hatteras all the way down to Buxton, to Cape Hatteras lighthouse, and that is during the day on Friday, really almost overnight Thursday into the day on Friday.
We're going to see deteriorating conditions all up and down the East Coast. This is not going to be an Andrew. This is not going to be a huge Category 5 hurricane. It's not warm enough for that just yet.
But this is going to put significant, alongshore wind, pushing water onto that shore and rip currents everywhere across the East Coast, all the way from Jacksonville, on up to Myrtle Beach, and on up even into North Carolina itself.
As it moves farther to the north, this storm will continue and even put some waves, some wave action into probably New England and into Maine and Boston as it continues to move up.
This is a shot from space, pretty cool picture there from Tropical Storm Arthur --
PEREIRA: Great picture.
MYERS: -- cool, I guess, unless you are underneath it. And this would be the peninsula right there, the Florida coast right there, these outer bands getting to the Florida coast right now.
But it gets bigger tonight, turns into a hurricane by tonight and tomorrow. That's when it gets to the 85-mile-per-hour hurricane force as it gets very close to North Carolina.
PEREIRA: That is something else. And it's something else to see it from that vantage point.
OK, so you said riptides. You talked about currents. You talked about winds. Give us an idea of the biggest concern, though, with this storm.
MYERS: It is without a doubt in my mind -- it's when the water gets pushed up around the storm like this and gets pushed up into these coves right through here, all of this.
What you have along here, you'll have the sandbars, and they are only out maybe a hundred yards, but the water washes over the sandbars. You see the nice little breakers. They seem OK.
But all of a sudden, one of those sandbars breaks, and when the sandbar breaks in one spot, all of that water wants to rush back out to the sea and it does it at 35- or 45-miles-per-hour.
So if you are going to be in the water, and I know it's the kind of week where everybody wants to be, you need to have a lifejacket on or stay out of the water at this point. It's going to get that dangerous.
We could lose a dozen people because they weren't listening to those kind of warnings. There's no sense in being in that type of surf. This is not the West Coast where you surf in this kind of surf. These are sandbars, these are dangerous places, and rip currents happen all the time when we see this.
And people have a cocktail or two, they want to go out in the water to cool off, and all the sudden you are a hundred yards out, and the lifeguard can't get you, so please, lifejacket or don't go in the water at all.
BERMAN: Hey, Chad, just to be clear, we are talking about landfall for this hurricane. It may only be a Category 1, which isn't that strong, but you are talking about landfall sometime Wednesday into Thursday, Thursday into Friday, off the coast of North Carolina.
MYERS: Correct. The middle of the cone -- and I always hate to talk about the middle of the cone because it never follows the middle of the cone -- the middle of the cone does take it off shore about 20 miles away from that Cape Hatteras lighthouse.
But it's not the middle. The middle of the eye is not the part we're worried about. It's the outer part to that eye that could make landfall, and as it moves on through here right through Nags Head, here's Charleston, here's Myrtle Beach right through here, and there's that landfall you talked about, 80-mile-per-hour storm.
If it doesn't make landfall, it's close. It's within 10 or 15 miles from the beach, and then you get all of the water that's going to be splashing up here, here, here, here, all the way up the coast. And that's where all those rip currents are going to be, all up and down.
There'll going to be some rain through here, but this is not the biggest storm we're going to see this year. This is just maybe a precursor to what this season could be.
BERMAN: All right, Chad. Chad Myers, thanks so much. We will keep our eye on this throughout the day, so stick around with CNN for that.
Other news happening @ THIS HOUR, clashes breaking out between Palestinians and Israeli security forces in Jerusalem today, enflaming an already tense situation there.
A CNN crew was caught up in the violence. Our Atika Shubert was right in the middle of a live report. Take a look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Things have are very tense here at the moment. In fact, I'm going to spin the camera around very briefly here.
Oh! Excuse me. There's a lot of police trying to disperse us here. Sorry for all that noise, but it seems they just let off a stun grenade near us.
You can see Israel police trying to disperse residents here who are very angry at what's been happening.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BERMAN: The outrage this time triggered by the discovery of the body of a kidnapped Palestinian teenager. Police are looking into whether this was retaliation for the abduction and killing of three Israeli teenagers.
We'll have more on this situation later @ THIS HOUR.
PEREIRA: The alleged ringleader of the 2012 attack of the U.S. mission in Benghazi is in a Washington court this morning.
Ahmed Abu Khattala has a detention hearing today. Saturday, the Libyan pleaded not guilty to one count of providing material support to terrorists. He's charged in the attack that left four Americans dead, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. BERMAN: Just days after an evacuation slide inflated inside a United Airlines flight, there's a water leak on a Qantas flight, forced it turn back. The plane was just an hour in on a 14 hour stretch from L.A. to Melbourne, Australia.
On board was American actress Yvette Nicole Brown from the TV show, "Community."
PEREIRA: Yvette joins us on the line from L.A. She is a buddy of mine, full disclosure.
Yvette, it's so good to know you all are OK. We saw your tweets, "River running through the aisle." Lady, tell us what happened.
YVETTE NICOLE BROWN, ACTRESS (via telephone): Oh, my god, first of all, thanks for having me on. I'm glad I'm able to talk to you first about this.
We were just maybe an hour into the flight, and all of a sudden, it looked like a trickle at first, and I thought someone had spilled like a soda or pop or something.
And then it just got bigger and filled up both aisles, and it literally was like a river running down the aisles of the plane. It was the scariest thing I've ever seen.
BERMAN: Now, you know, a leak in an airplane with water flooding and stuff is not something you normally think about as a problem during flight, so how did you all handle this as it was happening?
BROWN (via telephone): It seemed a problem to me because it's water and electricity. All I kept thinking about was we're over the Pacific, and I'm in something that's full of electricity and there's water.
And the other thing was it's a double-decker plane, so I was wondering where the water was going, because it flowed by us, but I'm thinking, there are people below us. There's like a staircase behind us. And sure enough, it became like a downpour for them.
So I want to say this about Qantas, they could not have been nicer to all of us, and they were just very efficient and they put everybody up in hotels. I came home, of course, because I live in L.A., but they were great.
So I want to make sure that I say that because I -- my tweet kind of seemed like everything was going crazy. It wasn't. They were in control of the whole situation.
PEREIRA: Well, and look, these things happen very quickly, and they are on board the plane too, the flight crew, et cetera.
Tell us how they handled the situation. It looked like some clever people put to use some of the supplies you had on board the plane.
What did they do to try to keep that water from getting any further down the aisle? BROWN (via telephone): The biggest problem was stopping the pipe
burst. The passenger in front of me got a video of the pipe burst. As bad as it was, I'm surprised it wasn't more mayhem in the back.
The flight attendants were so professional. You never would have known anything had gone crazy, crazy wrong. I can't even put it to words. I'm not a great flyer to begin with, so for me, I -- you always watch the flight attendants. If they are freaking out, you freak out too.
They never freaked out. They were honest about what was happening. They told us what could happen. But for the comfort of the other passengers, it was like, when we found out later that they basically got rained on and sitting in wet seats, no one wants that, 15-hour flight and you are soaked.
It's a small inconvenience for us up top, the ones downstairs were really catching it. It was the right decision to make.
PEREIRA: I'm glad they did turn back, and I know that you tweeted about that, and several other passengers as well did, because you're right; it would have been a miserable, miserable flight.
Are you heading now again -- are you going to try this again, head to Melbourne?
BROWN (via telephone): I'm hoping to try again. They're putting us -- I hear they're putting us on a plane later today.
I'm just such a wimpy flyer. I'm just so afraid. But there are so many fans at Comic Con in Melbourne that are waiting for all of us to get there, so I feel like if I don't try again, then I'm really not a good person, so --
BERMAN: Pack your flippers this time.
BROWN (via telephone): (Inaudible).
PEREIRA: You'll be fine, Yvette. You know that. Yvette Nicole Brown, thank you so much for joining us so tell us firsthand about this crazy flight from Qantas.
We should point out, "Community," a lot of fans were disappointed when the show wasn't renewed. They are going to do the next season on Yahoo! Did you see that?
BERMAN: No flooding on Yahoo! by the way. Those pictures are nuts!
PEREIRA: Is that insane?
BERMAN: It's nuts. It's not what you think about in an airplane with the water flowing down the aisle.
PEREIRA: Not what you hope to see ever, so hopefully, they won't have that problem again and everybody on the way to their destination very soon. Take a short break here. Ahead @ THIS HOUR, you probably heard about the hot convict or maybe you saw that picture. He landed a modeling contract. The only thing is, he has to get out of jail first.
BERMAN: Then, sodium kills. We all know eating salty foods, not good for you, so why is salt still high on restaurant menus?
PEREIRA: Also ahead, the worst president since World War II, who is it? President Obama, George w. Bush, someone else?
Let us know what you think. Go onto our Facebook page. Sound off. We'll also have it ahead @ THIS HOUR.
BERMAN: @ THIS HOUR, more undocumented immigrant families preparing their move from Texas to California, and the question is will they get a reception like this?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You don't know where you are going to go. Are they going to take that space in the classroom away from the kids that --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They are not. They are children and they have --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We have children too! I have kids!
UNIDENTIFIED MALES AND FEMALES: USA! USA!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PEREIRA: Really dramatic moments playing out on the border, angry protesters and counter-protesters met almost 150 immigrants, mostly children with their parents in Marietta, California. That's between L.A. and San Diego.
The government transferred them to relieve the overcrowding currently at the Texas border. The buses, however, had to take them to another facility in another county because of those demonstrations.
The mayor of Marietta said the city is expecting new arrivals from Texas every 72 hours for several weeks.
BERMAN: So Michael Wildes is an immigration attorney and immigration law professor. Michael, thank so much for being with us.
MICHAEL WILDES, IMMIGRATION ATTORNEY: A pleasure, John. Hi, Michaela.
BERMAN: That situation, you know, it seems like with more and more immigrants being moved like this, we could see that situation again.
Is that something we should be concerned about?
WILDES: There's a deafening silence in Washington, and unfortunately, a president who seems to be sending out a confused message right now.
He's deported more people than any other president in our nation's country, and this is a Band-Aid effectively being placed of cancer.
The kinds of immigration controls we see have not been put into place where every president in the last 2 centuries have put measures in place to meet the challenge. It's as if the two parents went in the backyard and the kids are fighting in the front yard. Look at the poor judgment and taste. How a nation built on the backs on immigrants -- I'm a second generation immigration lawyer. All day long, I spend my time trying to helping people come to this country through family petitions, business applications and so forth.
The Wild West is created. In our city corridors, we have stacking phenomenons, where immigrants and landlords are creating illegal tenancies. At the southern border, we have w have an underground culture, an industry on both sides of border. We have jails that are now being used, and people have heads to a bed and they are making money in America and we have smugglers taking children across.
PEREIRA: And that brings us to this scenario that we're seeing. Some of voices here yelling, you see the signs, return to sender. They are saying that people should come to this nation legally and not through a back door. But the fact remains on those buses are children. We've had people sit on this very desk and say it's un-American, that we would turn these children away that are facing poverty and maybe even death back home in their home nation. How do we balance those two things?
WILDE: Very difficult subject. We are a nation of law, and we are a government and a nation that took great stock in our legacy of immigration. We are all immigrants and post 9/11 as we see with the Chinese exclusion acts in the 1800s, when that pendulum swings and there's a for immigration and against immigration kind of sentiment. But when you have a deafening silence in Washington, a president who now courageously is trying to do something and Congress that won't budge, you can't advance this.
There are multiple truths here. The truth is a humanitarian nation. These are children, the most vulnerable. They may have good political or criminal activity that they are seeking refuge from.
BERMAN: You are a lawyer -- what legal protection do they have on that bus? When that bus arrives in that town with angry protesters, what legal protection do the people on the bus have?
WILDE: Because they are minors, legally they don't accrue unlawful presence until a later time in their life. It's not a criminal act for them to have entered the United States and their sustain presence on U.S. soil is not criminally sanctioned.
PEREIRA: Until what age?
WILDE: Until age 18. It's not even a criminal act at that point. The problem is since they are minors and since one state doesn't have the facilities, again, they are passing the can down the hall. This is now going to go another state that has room, and that culture, again, immigration detention centers where you are putting these poor children next to hardened criminals, until they have a day in court, is just unbelievably poor judgment.
I'm formerly a federal prosecutor, and a mayor in New Jersey where I live. Everybody is right and everybody is wrong. Taxpayers should not be paying for this. This is not America's financial problem. On the other hand, if we hold ourselves over as the world's cop, and we are the greatest experiment in democracy, we should have a system of law that will meet and change with the times.
The last time we changed our immigration law was president Reagan in an economy that was more robust and very different than now. These are people, immigrants, who will roll up their sleeves and help right our economic ship. And homeland security is not just border control, it is taking care of our economic needs at the same time.
PEREIRA: I feel we could have you back and talk about this again, because obviously we can tell, the three of us, not the smartest people around, but we're fairly decently smart. We can't solve this and we know it's not an easy fix. You made a very good point there's no single truth, there are many truths.
WILDE: This is a snap shot of America and we have to fix it.
PEREIRA: It is. We want to point out that CNN is taking an in-depth look at this immigration issue with the film "DOCUMENTED", it airs at 9 p.m. Eastern. Mr. Wilde, thank you so much for joining us.
WILDE: My pleasure, thank you.
BERMAN: Meanwhile, President Obama's favorable, approval rating slipping. But does that make him the worst president since World War II? Where does he stand against the other guys since then? We'll tell you right after the break.!
PEREIRA: @THISHOUR, President Obama had some votes he would probably rather not have today. Take a look, a national survey out today from Quinnipiac University today, shows him as the worst president since World War II. Thirty-three percent picked the current commander in chief. His predecessor George W. Bush meanwhile got 28 percent. Both of them blew away Richard Nixon and Jimmy Carter in the worst category.
BERMAN: Let's discuss this shall we with our political commentator Margaret Hoover, she is also a Republican consultant. Also joining us, political analyst John Avlon. John joins us from the Daily Beast. John is the editor there. John is very important at the Daily Beast.
John, because you are so important, I want to start with you. You are also the author of a book called, Wing Nuts, I want to give that a plug right now. I think that is important here. This poll to me, you know, I don't think President Obama should start crying about this just because it says he's the worst president ever. But it does speak to a lot of things going on, including, I think, just the incredible polarization in our society.
JOHN AVLON, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Absolutely, John. I mean, the fact that George W. Bush is the second worst president in this poll does speak to how polarized and passionate people are with their politics and their total lack of perspective.
Look, guys, history is important, history requires perspective. Richard Nixon who resigns in disgrace after Watergate, this shouldn't be close. And the fact that the president is the top of this poll really does speak to that polarization and total lack perspective in the way we view our politics.
PEREIRA: Margaret, I almost wonder if we had gone back while George W. Bush was in office and done the same poll if we would see a --
BERMAN: We did.
PEREIRA: We did, because I think about the fact that, I think we take it as sport to, sort of, pile on whoever in office. We like to complain about the job, whatever president is doing.
MARGARET HOOVER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think that's right. I think there is also something to the timing of the polling now. Now is a particularly low water mark for most second term presidencies. George W. Bush had a low, very hard time, about this time during this time in his second term. There had been Katrina. There had been the failures of the social security reform, and immigration reform. You are seeing that similarly with President Obama. He hasn't gotten any legislation through in the last year -- last two years. Robert Gibbs, his former press secretary called the first year after his administration, the lost year.
There has been -- and by the way his -- this is the sequel, and by the way, there has been -- basically, he has not been able to get anything through. His signature health reform has very, very unpopular to the extent that the Senate may even become Republican by running against it.
BERMAN: What's really interesting is the Republicans are saying the President Obama is the worst president ever and Democrats are saying George W. Bush is the worst president ever. The only real movement that we are seeing in this poll it seems is that President Clinto,n who was listed by many as the worst president ever eight years ago, before President Obama took office, he's had some gains, John.
AVLON Yes. Yes. I mean, you know, if anyone said that Bill Clinton was going to be the Republican's favorite ex-Democrat president, you would laugh at the time because they tried to impeach the guy. It does speak to the way we view the past through a sort of misty lens. The president of two decades ago always look better, and the president in office in his second term looks awful.
When Harry Truman slunk out of Washington in 1952, he had a 27 percent approval rating. No w he is regarded as one of the great architects of the Cold Ward and a great President. So it really is a matter, you know, let's have a sense of perspective here. And these partisan pile ons that cause us distort our sense of perspective, really are ridiculous. They have no sense of history and we get obsessed with these small fights. And we tear out country down in the process.
PEREIRA: Another topic we can talk about, the topic of being unpopular, Congress, Margaret, slightly more unpopular than the president. About 15 percent approval. 15 percent --
HOOVER: That's up from 13 percent.
PEREIRA: That's a good point. Let's stay positive on this.
BERMAN: They are more popular than a bad rash.
HOOVER: Who was it that said -- I think it was John Boehner who said basically that brings you down to relatives, blood relatives and staffers.
PEREIRA: Well, look, we've also learned that they are quietly changing the rules about reporting free trips given that 15 percent, it makes you wonder why they would make that move.
HOOVER: Yes, no wonder they are in held in such terrible acclaim. What they are saying supposedly is they were trying to make it more transparent by creating another process by which you could just look up their trips and you could -- whatever. Under the guise of transparency they have actually made it harder to find out if they are being honest about the free gifts they are getting and the free trips they are getting in their private time. No wonder we don't like Congress.
BERMAN: By the way, this is a bipartisan move.
HOOVER: We know that the ethics committee actually helps to obscure the ethics in congress more than help transparency. That is one of the problems we have in congress. No wonder Americans are disenchanted.
BERMA: Excellent work, guys. Margaret Hoover, John Avlon, great to have you with us, really appreciate it.
PEREIRA: Short break here. Ahead, the cannibal cop, as he is called, walks free. His case was overturned. Now the former police officer who was in jail for conspiring to kidnap, torture, kill, and even cook, even eat women is off the hook. Why? Because the judge believes it's all fantasy.