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Pushing President Obama's Border Crisis Plan; Governor Perry Reacts To Immigration Meeting; Israeli Leader Vows To Intensify Gaza Attacks; LeBron James' Big Decision; Dramatic Testimony from Donald Sterling

Aired July 10, 2014 - 06:00   ET


KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning and welcome to NEW DAY, everybody. It's Thursday, July 10th, 6:00 in the east. A busy day ahead. John Berman is here with us. Chris is off.

We begin with the border crisis about to take center stage on Capitol Hill. President Obama urging Congress to take swift action on his $3.7 billion proposal to address the rise, the surge really, of undocumented immigrants, many of them children crossing the U.S.- Mexico border.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: And today reinforcement, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson will push the president's plan during a Senate hearing, but House Republicans have made it clear there will not be a speedy vote, all of this following President Obama's visit to Texas where he met with Governor Rick Perry on this urgent issue. Senior White House correspondent, Jim Acosta, following it all for us. Good morning, Jim.

JIM ACOSTA, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, John and Kate. With his meeting with Texas Governor Rick Perry behind him President Obama will spend one more day to the state without a trip to the border before heading back to Washington where his plan to address the border crisis is far from a sure thing.


ACOSTA (voice-over): For President Obama and Texas Governor Rick Perry, the showdown was more of a sit-down. Different ends of a roundtable discussion in Dallas on the crisis at the border.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Just had a good meeting with Governor Perry.

ACOSTA: The president later told reporters his beef is not with Perry, it's with Congress, who has a $4 billion request to deal with the emergency.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Are folks more interested in politics or are they more interested in solving the problem? If they are interested in solving the problem then this can be solved. ACOSTA: Perry was less charitable releasing a statement calling for the National Guard and more drones on the border, adding the crisis has been created by bad public policy, in particular the failure to secure the border. Back in Washington, critics from both parties slammed the president's decision to attend fundraisers in Texas.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's visiting Democratic fat cats to collect checks.

ACOSTA: Instead of traveling to the border.

REPRESENTATIVE LUIS GUTIERREZ (D), ILLINOIS: It does bother me. I wish the president of the United States were going down and visiting the children and visiting the site.

ACOSTA: The president wasn't budging.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: This isn't theater. This is a problem. I'm not interested in photo-ops. I'm interested in solving a problem.

ACOSTA: But White House officials are worried critics just might kill the border bill.

SENATOR TOM COBURN (R), OKLAHOMA: The president just asked for $3.7 billion. For less than $20 million we can fly them all back first class so think about how stupid our policy is.

ACOSTA: As the president told Perry he won't use an executive action this time around.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: And I had to remind him I'm getting sued right now by Mr. Boehner apparently for going ahead and acting instead of going through Congress.


ACOSTA: Now the White House is also seeking new legal authorities to speed up the deportations of those children who are coming in from Central America because they have special protections under the law. Later today a bipartisan bill designed to do just that is expected to be introduced up on Capitol Hill, but, Kate, that bill is also facing opposition, this time from Democrats.

And you mentioned that hearing featuring Jeh Johnson, he'll be up on Capitol Hill later today. He's expected to testify according to administration officials that I've talked to that without that money on the border they could run out of space to care for those children very, very quickly -- Kate.

BOLDUAN: There is no question, both sides saying this is a humanitarian crisis. How they want to deal with it, that's exactly where things split off. Jim Acosta at the White House, thanks so much. Jim, we'll get back to you.

I did have a chance to speak with Governor Rick Perry after he had that meeting with the president. Here is some of our conversation. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BOLDUAN: You meet with the president after quite a bit of fanfare. He leaves the meeting saying that some of what you said makes quite a bit of sense. How would you describe the meeting? Are you guys on the same page?

GOVERNOR RICK PERRY (R), TEXAS: I certainly think that what I said made a lot of sense, and I don't know we're on the same page or not. The president said philosophically he agreed with the things that I talked about because I said we need to secure the border. You need to put these National Guard troops on there. We need to change these policies that are enticing people to come to the United States, and these policies that I'm talking about are where that if you're from one of the Central American countries rather than Mexico you're treated differently.

These incentives, if you will, that if you come into the United States you can stay. Stop those policies and secure the border, and at that particular point in time it staunches substantially this flow of individuals. Then the United States border patrol can back to doing what they are supposed to do which is being on guard for those either drug dealers or those with terrorist ties back that are penetrating or attempting to penetrate our border.

BOLDUAN: You have requested that he still come down to the border. You're saying that it's very important to see. He says that he doesn't want to be part of theater, that he's not interested in photo- ops.

PERRY: It's not theater.

BOLDUAN: He's basically saying that's what that would be.

PERRY: It's not theater. The American people expected to see their president when there's a disaster. He showed up at Sandy. Why can't he show up on the border of Texas?

BOLDUAN: On the issue of border, you're talking about the national guardsmen there, if you have a surge of national guardsmen no matter how many people you put at the border, you've still got to deal with the crisis, the immediate crisis at hand, what to do with the tens of thousands of kids that are already through and already sitting here on our side of the border. What do you do with those kids -- Governor?

PERRY: But you first have to staunch -- that's a symptom. The children are a symptom of policies that have enticed them to come. The first thing you have to do is stop the flow because if we don't, then the problem is not going to be --

BOLDUAN: Say you stop the flow though. You know this problem. What do you do with the kids?

PERRY: At that particular point in time they can follow the -- the rule of law that we have and process them very quickly and send them back to the countries that they are from. The real humanitarian thing from my perspective is to first not give them reasons to be coming here to begin with. The other one is to reunite these families together, not, you know, continue policies that rip these families apart and send children by themselves or mothers and a baby away from their family. That's not humanitarian.

BOLDUAN: One of the things that the president said is a lot of what you have suggested is part of this emergency funding that he's asking Congress for. He says it hits the targets that you're talking about, especially trying to get these children through the immigration system faster to process them faster if they do make it over here. Are you going to come out and support him to have that passed?

PERRY: I'm going to support the president to secure the border because if he doesn't do that first, I'm not sure the American people are going to trust the president, our Congress to do what is required. They look back in history which has not particularly treated them well from the standpoint of border security. So when the president -- and the president could do this very quickly, again, and I told him today. I said, Mr. President, take the action. I said put the onus on Congress, but you first have to act, Mr. President. That's what leadership is all about.

BOLDUAN: He says -- when talking about Congress, he says that he can't put the onus on Congress because they are not acting. He says it all comes down to if they want to take action or if they want to play politics, and he is pointing the finger squarely on Republicans saying Republicans are trying to have it both ways. They want to tell him to do something, but at the same time they want to criticize him for taking unilateral action and sue him over it. Does he have a point on that?

PERRY: Well, I think when you look at the president's actions, particularly on this issue, you have Democrats that are asking for the president to come to the border, both congressman vela and Congressman Henry Cuellar have asked him to come.

PERRY: Without talking about the prescription of what to do about stemming the surge, stemming this flood that you think is so important and then also dealing with this crisis of all of these kids on the border, him showing up at the border, that's not going to do anything about it. It's got to be dealt with either with governors like yourself or through Congress.

PERRY: So actions are really important.


PERRY: Und unless we see this president acting and the American people are going to think that he does not care about securing the border, I think that's the real political issue for this president. I think it makes sense for a president or a governor to go to the site of a natural disaster or a man-made disaster. I don't understand why the president has dug his heels in and basically said to Democrats and Republicans alike I'm not going because it will look political.

BOLDUAN: On this latest crisis, I have to ask you, governor. You said last month that the administration on this issue was incredibly inept or they are in on this somehow. After your meeting today with the president, which one is it, Governor?

PERRY: Well, I don't know, and that's the reason I asked that question a month ago was why haven't we had any more action out of this administration? And, you know, again, the president has come to Texas. The president has gracious and allowed me to give him my insight on this, and I appreciate that, but the fact is he still hasn't acted, and so actions are really important in this process.

BOLDUAN: But words are important here as well, and you're saying, as Republicans believe, that the president's words and talking about it, act previously, that has sent the wrong message to Central America, so words do matter in this debate. Do you really honestly believe, as you said in the interview last month, that the administration might be in on this somehow? I mean, you're suggesting there's some kind of conspiracy here.

BOLDUAN: No. What I'm suggesting is that this administration and their words and their actions or the lack thereof are part of the problem. I think you're putting the words of conspiracy in my mouth which I did not say. No, you actually did say the word I hate to be conspiratorial.

PERRY: And I hate to be conspiratorial, I hate to be conspiratorial. I did not say I was.

BOLDUAN: And then can you move that many people from Central America across Mexico and then into the United States without there being a fairly coordinated effort.

PERRY: I don't know.

BOLDUAN: I'm just asking, Governor, because words matter.

PERRY: I totally understand, but the real issue here rather than getting into a semantics battle is whether or not this president is going to lead this country.

BOLDUAN: Can you work hand in hand though with the president that you criticize so harshly on an issue that is so important to you? Can you get past the politics?

PERRY: I did today, so I suspect we will.

BOLDUAN: Governor, thank you for your time.


BOLDUAN: Next hour, we're going to talk with a Democratic Congressman Henry Cuellar from the state about the new bill that he plans to introduce, bipartisan bill, to change the law, which would make it easier to process and deport undocumented children from Central America, one of the elements that is part of this, I guess we can say, the prescription they are trying to cobble together to solve the crisis at the border. BERMAN: Interesting interview. Pay no attention to what I said, let's not talk about the words that I actually said out loud.

BOLDUAN: Words matter on both sides on this, and that's why you've got to ask.

BERMAN: Got to press him on it.

In the Middle East, more blood shot overnight as we learn that Israeli authorities have suspended a police officer whom they say was involved in the brutal beating of an American teenager in Jerusalem, and overnight the deadly conflict between Israel and Hamas has only intensified. More fire exchanged across the Gaza strip as the Israeli defense system iron dome intercepts rockets over densely populated Tel Aviv.

The death toll, it is climbing this morning. The Palestinian president calling the situation genocide. CNN's Diana Magnay is right on the border between Gaza and Israel and has literally been watching rockets fly over her head all morning. Diana, give me a sense of the latest.

DIANA MAGNAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, John. We just saw four or five go straight up into the air out of Gaza in this direction really. We were waiting to see if there was some kind of intercept by iron dome missiles, but there was none, but the rockets seemed to have gone in a direction that we can't identify.

Iron dome has proven extremely effective in intercepting any kind of rockets that have aimed towards large civilian populated areas like Tel Aviv and Jerusalem but the sirens are sounding here as the air raids continue in the Gaza strip behind me. Let's take a look.


MAGNAY (voice-over): Overnight Israel continued its aerial assault on Gaza, striking more than 100 targets. Its aim, to reduce the flow of rockets and to severely cripple Hamas' operational capabilities. Gaza fired dozens of rockets overnight, some hit the ground and others intercepted by the iron dome defense shield. The burning skies above Israel's border with Gaza a clear sign that this fight is far from over. Both sides say the other will pay the price for the continued onslaught.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What am I supposed to do, just to receive and count the rockets or try to defend our people and ourselves, this is what we're doing.

PRESIDENT SHIMON PERES, ISRAEL: We didn't start the war today. They started it already several days ago.

HAMAS: Hamas' rockets scorching Israel's countryside on Wednesday. Militants in Gaza released this video on Wednesday showing a rocket launcher getting into position, and then firing more than a dozen rockets towards Israel. Some hospitals there now moving newborns into makeshift ICUs. As the number of Palestinian casualties in Gaza continues to rise. Over 70 killed and more than 500 injured.

People in Gaza left picking up the pieces of their shattered homes and livelihoods. Now, John, I think you can just see the smoke from where an Israeli air strike hit just as we were running that report. The air strikes, as you can see, continuing. The question what is the end game here? Israel has been authorized or the defense forces have been authorized to bring in 40,000 reservists, 20,000 have already been called up. Ground troops will clearly up the ante considerably if they do move into the Gaza strip.

MAGNAY: The question what is the end game here? Israel has been authorized or the defense forces have been authorized to bring in 40,000 reservists; 20,000 have already been called up. Ground troops will clearly up the ante considerably if they do move into the Gaza Strip, if you see a situation where they start having face-to-face combat.

It's questionable whether Israel has any kind of appetite for a long drawn-out war and what that would achieve, whether it's possible to root out Hamas and who might then take its place in an area, a very densely populated-year where there are number of perhaps more dangerous militant groups.

Michaela, back to you.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: All right. Diana Magnay with the tense and ongoing situation. We'll continue to watch it and, of course, we urge you to stay safe.

Let's give you a look at more of our headlines right now.

Breaking overnight: a man accused of murdering his four children and the two adults caring for them is now in police custody. The man surrendered after a three-hour standoff in the Houston area. He's also accused of shooting his 15-year-old daughter in the head. She survived and was able to call 911 telling police where to find her father. Investigators say a domestic dispute sparked this deadly rampage.

In Iraq, CNN has learned the Pentagon is considering using a drone strike to kill the leader of is. The mission would have to be approved by President Obama, this as we learn that Sunni militants have seized nuclear materials from a university in Iraq. However, two U.S. officials tell CNN the stolen materials are not believed to be enriched uranium, and therefore, it would be difficult to be used to make weapons of mass destruction.

The U.S. marine imprisoned for driving into Mexico with three firearms will stay behind bars for now. The first court hearing for Sergeant Andrew Tahmooressi ended late last night. He'll be back in a Mexican courtroom early next month. Tahmooressi's defense said there were irregularities with records of the search of his truck. Tahmooressi for his part maintains he took a wrong turn on the California side of the bothered into Mexico back in March.

Chinese computer hackers tried to access U.S. government employee data, according to "The New York Times." In the report, federal officials say hackers sought information on thousands of government employees who applied for top secret security clearances. The Department of Homeland Security says there's no indication any personally identifiable information was taken.

Well, it will be Argentina taking on Germany in Sunday's World Cup final. Plan your day, folks. Argentina secured its spot with a 4-2 shootout win over the Netherlands. The Germans, of course, we know clinched their spot in the final with Tuesday's thrashing of host nation Brazil.

This is the third time Argentina and Germany meet in the World Cup final. They split the first two meetings in 1986 and 1990, and, you know, we should also let you -- this final could lead to a holy battle if you want to look at it this way, pitting two living popes against one another. Think about it, Pope Francis from Argentina, Pope Emeritus Benedict from Germany. Do you think they will have a little friendly papal wager? A wafer.

BOLDUAN: A sainthood?


BERMAN: My idea is if they have to go to penalty kicks, they both have to shoot.

PEREIRA: Genius, I like that.

BERMAN: Like that? Like that?

BOLDUAN: Interesting.

Who has the better shooters?

PEREIRA: We're just getting a call from the Vatican that's a no go.

BERMAN: Not going to be involved in the shootout.

Seventeen minutes after the hour.

The fate of the NBA's biggest free agent still hangs in the balance. LeBron James, there is so much going on with this guy right now. He wrapped up a meeting with the Miami Heat president.

BOLDUAN: Where is he going to take his talents?

BERMAN: No decision allegedly yet about his future as Cleveland fans wait with bated breath to see if their hometown friend will be coming home.

BOLDUAN: Like the biggest week ever for Cleveland.


BERMAN: They get the convention and LeBron James. They could just merge the two and he should take the nomination. BOLDUAN: There you go.

BERMAN: Andy Scholes, tell us what's going on.

ANDY SCHOLES, BLEACHER REPORT: Hey, good morning, guys.

You know, in the history of sports, never has one player been able to hold an entire league hostage like LeBron is doing right now. Everyone is waiting, holding their breath to see what LeBron is going to do, especially Cleveland.

Now, LeBron, he met with Miami Heat president Pat Riley yesterday in Las Vegas. According to reports, he's not made his decision yet. He will discuss his options with his family before finally making an announcement.

The Cavs in the meantime, they are doing everything they can, making a big trade yesterday to clear salary cap space so that they are able to give LeBron a max contract. Of course, the entire city of Cleveland on pins and needles right now. I think they are the front-runners but, guys, obviously, they would just be crushed again if LeBron decides not to go back.

You can probably expect a decision sometime either today. We know he's going to the World Cup final in Brazil on Sunday, so we'll definitely get one before then. But again, he's holding up this whole free agency thing so we need a decision sooner or later. We don't know what Carmelo or Chris Bosh are going to do because they are waiting for LeBron to go first.

BERMAN: Yes, man. He goes first and the dominoes will fall.

I think he's going back. I can't think of a reason not to --

BOLDUAN: You think he's going to Cleveland.

BERMAN: I think he's going back.

PEREIRA: I don't know how he can go back.

BOLDUAN: What if this is all big fun theater and he stays with Miami?

BERMAN: Cleveland would not be happy about that.

BOLDUAN: All right.

PEREIRA: That would be another diss to Cleveland.

BOLDUAN: Andy, what's your guess? Real quick.

SCHOLES: I say he goes back to Cleveland.

BERMAN: See? Andy agrees with me, just to be clear.

BOLDUAN: We're clear. OK, Berman.

Thanks, Andy. We'll talk to you soon.

Coming up next on NEW DAY, L.A. clippers owner Donald Sterling back on the stand and taking on the NBA as he tries to hold on to his team. Sure is trying, but he saved his harshest words, not for the NBA, but for his estranged wife.


BOLDUAN: New drama this morning in the Sterling family saga. Donald Sterling was back on the witness stand for another day of heated testimony in the trial and the case to determine if his wife can sell the L.A. Clippers. Sterling promised to fight the NBA to keep his team, but he saved his harshest words for Shelly Sterling herself.

Sara Sidner has the details.


SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Day three in court filled with fiery testimony. Both Donald Sterling and his estranged wife Shelly took the stand. It began with a tender moment. Shelly Sterling approached her husband and they chatted and held hands.

But after her testimony Donald lashed out as she approached him on her way back to her seat, "Get away from me, you pig," he said, and then muttered, "Shelly, how could you lie?"

The judge admonished him, saying his comments were disturbing.

ADAM STREISAND, ATTORNEY: It was a shameful display by a seriously demented tyrant.

BOBBY SAMINI, STERLING ATTORNEY: I know that Donald felt, you know, very upset by watching her testimony. I think he felt betrayed by it.

SIDNER: Betrayed because he thought his wife Shelly deceived him about why she had hired doctors to examine him. "I trusted her. I believed her. I never thought that a woman would not stand by her husband, Donald testified. Shelly Sterling testified he's getting more forgetful. He gets mad for no particular reason. He's just not the same person that he used to be," she said.

Donald didn't agree saying he is still the man in charge, and his wife could never run all his corporations, including the trust that owns the Clippers. "To say someone else can take over is ludicrous," he testified.

Sterling also blasted the NBA. He called it a joke, the worst corporation in America, and then made this promise. "I will never, ever, ever sell this team, and until I die, I will be suing the NBA," he said.

SAMINI: He's not afraid of the NBA. He will make it his, you know, crusade to set the record straight with the NBA. SIDNER (voice-over): Speaking of the NBA, the judge says he does not

think the case will be over by the deadline set by former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer who wants to buy the team, but Ballmer's attorneys told us they are willing to go into overtime to get this deal done.

Sara Sidner, CNN, Los Angeles.


BERMAN: More chance for Donald Sterling to say more things.

BOLDUAN: Until I die I will sue the NBA. I don't understand what exactly this means for ownership. It clearly seems a little unclear.

BERMAN: All right. Let's take a look at what's going on with the weather. Meteorologist Indra Petersons is keeping track of the forecast -- Indra.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Let's take a look at the sight I think we are sick of at this point. Look at the heavy rain. This is actually Albany from yesterday and strong winds, strong enough to even uproot trees.

This has been the concern as we continue to watch the exact same cold front taking its time. Very easy to see where the cold front is, it's about a 12-hour loop. That's where the storms continue to fire up.

So, we want this guy out of here. Let's talk about the timing and where it is right now. Yes, you still have some instability not as bad as we've seen in the last couple of days, but nonetheless, we are still talking about the same front.

And notice the humidity difference. The hottest point of the day, we're talking about 5:00 this evening, Raleigh, you're still talking about 72 percent humidity. D.C., 62 percent. That is not comfortable out there, so that's one of the other side of this equation here.

So, of course, we have the higher humidity. We have the front. We have the low. That's going to be the bullseye today around the Carolinas for the heaviest amount of rain.

But all up and down the front in the Southwest, we're still talking about one to three inches of rain, just keep in mind, we're the northeast, high pressure building in. So close to the weekend, guys, and it's going to feel pretty good, at least in the Northeast. Midwest will get some showers as early as Saturday. But I'm in the Northeast, so it's fun.

BOLDUAN: My family is like, man, oh, man, oh man.

PETERSONS: You kind of bring there.

BERMAN: She doesn't care about your family.

BOLDUAN: Just made it very clear to me, Indra.

Thanks, Indra.

Coming up next on NEW DAY, investigators, they're going to painstaking detail to re-enact what happened when Justin Ross Harris left his 22- month-old son inside that hot car. We're going to explain what they were looking for this time.