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Roanoke Shooter Owned Gay Porn Sites; Hillary Clinton Slams GOP on Women's Health Issues; Trump Holds Double-Digit Lead; President Obama Tours New Orleans. Aired 4:30-5p ET

Aired August 27, 2015 - 16:30   ET


[16:33:33] JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back to THE LEAD. I'm John Berman in for Jake Tapper. Continuing with our top story.

New details painting a disturbing picture of the gunman who took the lives of reporter Alison Parker and a photographer Adam Ward, while they were doing an interview live on air. Their guest, Vicki Gardner, she was also shot. She is doing better today in the hospital.

Employment records, complaints and lawsuits show the gunman was often aggressive, often combative. And now we're tracing his online history and it shows he owns several pornographic Web sites.

Senior investigative correspondent Drew Griffin looking into all of this.

Let's start with the Web sites, Drew. What do we know?

DREW GRIFFIN, CNN INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: You know, it's just another disturbing twist as we look. This is between TV jobs, when he registered at least seven domain names, 2007 and 2008.

And John, he was soliciting for attractive and muscular men to model for live webcams, records obtained by CNN show that Flanagan's name -- that's the shooter -- in Vallejo, California, address, were included in the registration for these. We don't know how much money or if he made any money off of these sites.

The sites were set up during this period of time against when he lived in California, and according to his LinkedIn account was working at a place called NBG Interactive. We checked out that company, it turns out that, too, was registered under his own name.

We also know that he wrote on a basketball blog, soliciting for male models, asking for attractive and muscular guys with nice bodies.

[16:05:05] These sites aren't active anymore, it appears, again, and this was back in 2008. Keep in mind he started working at the Roanoke station in 2012 -- John.

BERMAN: Drew, what about the details of what the police found in his car because he had a lot of stuff in there that raises eyebrows.

GRIFFIN: Yes. Stuff that we knew were probably going to be found in there. The Glock pistol, the phone, other things, but also this, John. Handwritten typed notes, a to-do list, 17 stamped letters, and a briefcase that contained three license plates, a wig, a shawl, umbrella, and sun glasses. He also had a black hat seemingly indicating this may have been some kind of a disguise or a plan that he could basically get out of there.

We also know from the search warrant that was returned, that the investigators identified Flanagan as a suspect not in the tweets that we all saw, but based on a text message he sent to a friend, making reference to having done something stupid. So that is how police say they were first turned on to this person as a suspect, and why they put out that all points bulletin for him and the car he was driving -- John.

BERMAN: All right. Drew Griffin, so interesting, the ways the license plates indicating maybe he had some plans to get away.

Thank you, Drew.

In our "Politics Lead," brand-new poll numbers with good news for Joe Biden if he decides to run for president. That's next.

Plus another bump in the polls with Donald Trump, but also a potential warning sign for the Republican frontrunner.


[16:40:53] BERMAN: Welcome back to THE LEAD. I'm John Berman for Jake Tapper today. Time now for the "Politics Lead."

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton both on the campaign trail. Not together if that's what you were thinking. A brand new poll shows them holding down their number one spots nationally. As Clinton is softening her tone on one issue -- those e-mails and questionable handling of them at the State Department, But when it comes to taking on Republicans and their views on women, she deployed her strongest language yet.

CNN senior Washington correspondent Joe Johns is in Minneapolis with the Democratic Party leaders having some interesting meetings this week.

Joe, what did Secretary Clinton day?

JOE JOHNS, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: John, there are some interesting meetings. In fact, behind the scenes here at the Democratic National Committee summer meetings in Minneapolis, superdelegates as well as DNC members are being told in private briefings including one going on right now, essentially to keep their powder dry, to keep an open mind, that it's too early to anoint a frontrunner, specifically Hillary Clinton.

That's coming from the Draft Biden movement, in fact. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton was on the campaign trail, hitting the Republicans hard today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) HILLARY CLINTON (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, I'm going to tell you, I'm going to keep going.

JOHNS: Hillary Clinton trying to turn the focus back to Republicans, with a new line of attack in Ohio today.

CLINTON: Extreme views about women, we expect that from some of the terrorist groups. We expect that from people who don't want to live in the modern world, but it's a little hard to take coming from Republicans who want to be the president of the United States. Yet they espouse out-of-date and out-of-touch policies.

JOHNS: Her fierce jab prompted immediate outrage. Jeb Bush called her priorities totally wrong. It's a new tack from Clinton when just yesterday struck a tone of contrition when she acknowledged that her use of a private e-mail server was troubling to many voters.

CLINTON: Well, I know people have raised questions about my e-mail use as secretary of state. and I understand why. I get it.

JOHNS: All these comes as more Democrats raise questions about Clinton's status as the party's standard bearer. A new Quinnipiac shows her still firmly leading the field but down 10 points from last month. And w hopping 61 percent of voters polled said Clinton was not honest and trustworthy. Clinton's Democratic rivals see an opening.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Until we have -- start having debates, our party is going to be defined and branded by questions like what did Secretary Clinton know? When did she know it? And when will the FBI conclude its investigation? That's not a formula for success in the fall.

JOHNS: And as doubts persist about Clinton, there has been an increased interest in Vice President Biden's presidential ambitions. Quinnipiac found that the vice president does better than Clinton in hypothetical matchups against Republican hopefuls Donald Trump, Jeb Bush, and Marco Rubio.

Biden mourning the loss of his son Beau is gauging whether he has the emotional fuel to run, he told members of the Democratic National Committee.

JOE BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT: If I were to announce to run, I have to be able to commit to all of you that I would be able to give it my whole heart and my whole soul. And right now both of pretty well banged up.

JOHNS: As the rest of the field gathers for a party meeting in Minneapolis, where Clinton will hope to hear more of this.

RAY BUCKLEY, CHAIRMAN, NEW HAMPSHIRE DEMOCRATIC PARTY: For a generation they have thrown a kitchen sink at the Clintons, and the people of America understand what the real record is.


JOHNS: As Biden's deliberations continue, he met today with Richard Trumka, the powerful president of the AFL-CIO, who so far has not endorsed a candidate -- John.

BERMAN: Interesting meeting, though. Joe Johns, thank you so much.

So on the other side of the race for the White House, Donald Trump blasting critics over his hair.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't wear a toupee. It's my hair, I swear.


BERMAN: He even invited a woman onto stage to confirm it. That's next.


[16:45:01] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I believe it is.

TRUMP: Thank you.



BERMAN: Welcome back to THE LEAD. I'm John Berman. Jake Tapper is off today. Time now for the "Politics Lead."

What goes up in this case not coming down -- Donald Trump's poll numbers. And now the Republican frontrunner is explaining to the world why he thinks he is doing so well.

Today in South Carolina, Trump says -- Trump said his outsider appeal, outside Washington, outside politics, that's letting him leapfrog the senators and governors and others in the race.

CNN national political reporter Sara Murray is in Greenville.

And today, Sara, Trump targeted Jeb Bush again. He talked about China. He told a hardline on immigration. But it's one moment of absolutely no consequence that has the entire world talking.

SARA MURRAY, CNN NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, John, Trump did a lot of bragging about being on top of the latest polls. He touted his outsider image. And like you said, he had a lot of heated words for his rivals, but he maybe addressed the biggest controversy of his candidacy -- his hair. Let's take a look.


TRUMP: Remember how big those pages used to be?

MURRAY (voice-over): A confident Donald Trump reading to the crowd.

[16:50:06] TRUMP: Another words, the man of the toupee. I don't wear a toupee. It's my hair. I swear. Come here. Come here. Come here.

MURRAY: Upping the ante on his colorful antics, even pulling a woman on stage to defend his hairdo.

TRUMP: Come, come. Is it mine? Look.


TRUMP: It is. Say it, please.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I believe it is.

TRUMP: Thank you.

MURRAY: His jovial mood, perhaps thanks to a new Quinnipiac poll showing Trump with his widest lead yet. Trump now at 28 percent support, 16 points ahead of his closest competitor, Ben Carson.

TRUMP: We're going to win.

MURRAY: And attributing his rise to widespread frustration with Washington.

TRUMP: The reason is we have a message, and the message is essentially we're not going to take it anymore. We're just not going to take it anymore.