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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Donald Trump and Ben Carson Lead Latest Poll; Trump's Use of Twitter Against Opponents; New Details on the Murder of a Sheriff's Deputy; Interview with Sheriff Ron Hickman; LA Police Begin Using Body Cameras. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired August 31, 2015 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[20:00:20] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening. Thanks for joining us tonight.
Another sign of political outsiders are in and insiders are in trouble. There is Donald Trump and Carson. And over on the Democratic side, Vermont senator, Bernie Sanders. Big news for all of them tonight. He has been drawing big crowds, Bernie Sanders has some surprising support in his race with Hillary Clinton. And there is fresh evidence in the form of new polling tonight.
Chief national correspondent John King lays out the state of the race right now on both side by the numbers.
John, Bernie Sanders within striking distance of Hillary Clinton. Break down the numbers for us?
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A very comparative race, Anderson in the state. Well, remember, Hillary Clinton remembers she went off the rails in 2007, 2008. At the moment, Hillary Clinton still leading in Iowa. This is the new Iowa poll for the Des Moines Register Bloomberg, 37 percent. But Bernie Sanders is now within striking distance at 30 percent.
Why is this significant, number one, it is obvious, the math, it is within seven points. Number two, Hillary Clinton now below 50 for the first time. So there has to be jitters in the Clinton campaign. Sanders leads in New Hampshire. He is now in striking distance in Iowa.
It is interesting when you look at this poll because Democrats, this is good news for Hillary Clinton, 61 percent of Democrats in Iowa say the whole email controversy event is not important. Now you can make the argument that means 37, 38 percent say it is at least somewhat important. But six in ten Democrats say, it is not that important to them.
And this is very encouraging, Anderson, in this poll for Bernie Sanders. Ninety six percent of Sanders voters say they are supporting him because they like him and his idea. Only two percent say this a rejection of Hillary Clinton. So the Democrats who are of for Bernie Sanders aren't doing it anti-Clinton mood.
Just one more point as we look at this. It is a very close race. The Democrats in Iowa, they like their field. Use the president is (INAUDIBLE), 88 percent favorable among Democrats. Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders all pretty good favorability. Clinton has the highest negatives at 19. But if you look at this, and consider the part of political world we live in, Iowa Democrats are largely happy with their choices.
COOPER: And when it comes to the Republican field, Ben Carson is now giving Trump a run for the money.
KING: This is a wild, wild ride on the Republican side. And it is anti-establish and outsiders. Two polls to look at. This is "the Des Moines Register" poll. Donald Trump at 23. Ben Carson, at close second at 18. Then you had Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, Jeb Bush. Donald Trump leading on that one. Remember the 23 and the 18.
But again, two guys who had never held political office leading the race. Brand new out today is the Monmouth University poll. That one actually shows Dr. Carson in a tie with Donald Trump. 23-23. And in third place in this poll, another Republican who never held political office.
So if you look at this, this isn't rocket science. Republicans in Iowa are looking for something different. They're looking for somebody who has never held political office. And that's the hurting to guys like Governor Bush and Governor Walker.
COOPER: And Trump, as far as he goes, he has got a, a bit kind of coup when it comes to favorability ratings.
KING: Again, this is fascinating because a lot of the political pundits that said the more people hear Donald Trump, there is vulgar language, there is crassness, his refusal to answer some questions to get specific. Are people going to move away from Donald Trump? And they are going to say forget about it.
Well, look at this. In Iowa poll, his favorability rating at61 percent. Six in ten Republicans, likely caucus goers favorable, 27 percent not favorable. That's dramatic. To do that in today's politics to go 35 percent approval in May to 61 percent now is a huge jump. Why is it happening, Anderson? Let me tell you quickly why. Because Republicans in Iowa are literally mad as hell. Nine in ten say they're mad as hell at the government, 96 percent say they are mad as hell the president, 62 percent say they are mad as hell at Wall Street, 75 percent are mad as hell at their own Republican leadership within Congress, 91 percent are mad as hell at politics in general.
Republicans in Iowa have had it and they are look for somebody to come to this town and blow it up.
COOPER: John, thanks very much.
Let's talk more about the numbers with CNN political commentator Donna Brazile. She is a Democratic strategist and vice chair of the DNC voter project, also Jeffrey Lord who served as Ronald Reagan's White House political director and serves now as CNN commentator. He is Trump supporter. Also with us tonight, Amanda Carpenter, former communication director for Senator Ted Cruz.
Amanda, I mean, look at this number. Donald Trump, yet Ben Carson, Republican side, very outside the traditional mold. Not governors. Not senators. How concerned should the establishment be at this point?
AMANDA CARPENTER, FORMER COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR FOR SEN. TED CRUZ: Well, the way I view the polls right now, Anderson, is that the people getting in the top tier, are who voters want to hear more from at this point in time. They're saying Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina, Ted Cruz, we want to hear more from you. I don't think it is an actual vote at this moment.
But what I do think is interesting is that for the most part, Trump, Carson, Fiorina, largely not vetted. Haven't been in the public political eye that long. Whereas my former boss, Ted Cruz has. And people are familiar with their positions.
So I am very curious to see once people like Donald Trump stake out policy position have plans to defend how they fare in the polls once they're put in that position.
COOPER: That's an interesting idea. Donna, do you think that's true on the Democratic side with Bernie Sanders about Amanda saying, you know, it is not necessarily that they want to vote for Trump or Ben Carson. They just kind of like what they're hearing. They want to hear more. Do you think that's the same with what is going on with Sanders?
[20:05:12] DONNA BRAZILE, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes, I think Amanda is absolutely right. At this point in, in the political season, you know, voters are window shopping. They're taking a look at all of these candidates. They're going to rallies. They're going to union halls. They're listening to all of these candidates to find out if they look them. I mean they're dating Anderson. What's wrong with dating at this, at this stage of the season? I mean, in a few months, five months from tomorrow night, they'll actually have to stand up and proclaim their support, that's like a, you know, announcing that you are going to, you know, get engaged.
So I think it is very important to understand that Bernie Sanders is drawing a lot of first time voters. A lot of people are interested not just in his ideas, but, you know his enthusiasm, the fact that he wants to start a political revolution to take big money out of politics, to revolutionize you know the way students get their loans and pay them back. He has a real serious plan for the future. And I'm not surprised Democrats are taking an extended window shopping view of Bernie Sanders.
COOPER: Jeff, I mean, do you think Donald Trump has somebody to be concerned about. You look at this Monmouth University poll now showing Trump and Carson tied in Iowa each with 23 percent.
JEFFREY LORD, FORMER REAGAN WHITE HOUSE POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Well, I think you are always concerned. But I think he is doing just fine. There is within more that snuck in here just before I came in that I saw where he had 37 percent to nine percent for the follow-ups.
But the point here I think is that there really is a pattern here with this anti-establishment business. Donald Trump has tapped it into big time. And you know, I saw something on John King's show yesterday. And it's on the CNN Web site. And I find it so striking, I wrote a column about it tomorrow for "American Spectator."
CNN's Maeve Reston discovered that there are establishment types out there preparing a big attack on Donald Trump after we get through the Labor Day weekend. And they're trying to figure out who it is going to come from and how it is going to work. And basically I thought, you know, what in the world are these people thinking? When you look at these figures, when you add up Donald Trump and Ben Carson and Ted Cruz and Carly Fiorina, you are over 50 percent. In one case in one of the polls close to 65 percent. So I mean, this is like pouring gasoline on this. This -- this would be a huge mistake.
COOPER: Well, Amanda, I mean, at what point though to, I guess, there are maybe push back on Jeff's point. At what point do the other candidates have to start pushing back on Donald Trump? I mean, they have to do something if they want to stay in it race.
CARPENTER: Well, most of the candidates, they have gone harder Trump has backfired tremendously. You look at Rick Perry, gave a big speech against hi, Rand Paul tried it, Jeff tried it. This is the wrong move. I think this explicit. We had this huge conflict within the Republican Party between the grassroots and the establishment. This is continuing to play out. And until this typical establishment like candidates to learn that they need to pay attention to the fears and concerns and hopes and dreams that grassroots Americans have rather than trying to shut it up and ignore it, until they learn that lesson, the Republican Party as a whole will never be successful.
COOPER: But you know, Donna, it is always interesting to have an establishment candidate suddenly be told by their people, you have to be an outsider now. I mean, that's the exact opposite of what an outsider really is. So I mean, it is sort of it proves the point that they're really are an establishment candidate if they have to sort of be poll tested nor to be told to be an outsider?
BRAZILE: Well you know, the so-called outsiders, the insurgents, you know, we have seen them on the Democratic side. Gary Hart, Jesse Jackson, Howard Dean, Barack Obama, he actually did win the nomination. Although Hillary received more votes but had less delegates. So there is no question they are able to attract the kind of voters that want candidates who are not scripted. Want candidates who can speak to their hearts as well as to their souls and spirits.
So I think what we are seeing this summer and what we may see at the beginning of the fall before voters actually begin to stand up and declare their support, we might see the polls change once again.
I mean, you remember last four years ago, I won't forget. Every time I tried throw Republican back and they have to take it off because somebody else, you know, took over the lead. But this summer, Donald Trump, he is rewriting the book, some interesting book. And I hope the Democrats can write the final chapters by, by, winning in 2016.
COOPER: All right, Donna, Jeffrey Lord, Amanda Carpenter, stay with us. We are going to talk to you in a moment because I want to get your take on Donald Trump and his use of twitter against opponents. His latest target, Hillary Clinton's longtime aide, Huma Abedin, and her scandal played husband Anthony Weiner. The big question is Trump going too far going after her. Most of his supporters probably just say no, but we'll talk about that.
And later, breaking news in the ambush killing of this man, a Texas sheriff's deputy, and the sheriff claim that rhetoric surrounding the black lives matter movement could have motivated the suspect. Details ahead.
[20:13:58] COOPER: You may remember when Donald Trump said this on CNN. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Who are you going to attack in your first TV ad?
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Nobody. I just want to talk about my accomplishments. I'm not looking to affect anybody. I would rather have positive TV ad, absolutely.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: He said he would rather have positive television. It is true. We haven't seen any television attack ads from Trump, not yet. But that's pretty much beside the point considering the way he uses social media.
Today on Instagram, he posted a new attack ad against Jeb Bush. And on twitter he readily insults his opponents, their associates and even their associates' spouses. On Friday, Trump took aim at Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton's aide, who is married to former U.S. congressman Anthony Weiner.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Who is Huma married to? One of the great sleaze bags of our time. Anthony Weiner, did you know that?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Anthony Weiner, of course, as you probably recall is the guy who sexted pictures of his parts to a woman he met online. Today, Trump did not let up. He tweeted, Huma Abedin, the top aide to Hillary Clinton and wife to perv's lose bag Anthony Weiner was a major security risk as a collector of info. He was suggesting that ad to be in may have access to classified information in Clinton's emails and other Trump attack by way of Twitter.
Here is Randi Kaye.
[20:15:16] KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Donald Trump unleashed in 140 characters or less. His tweets are often sarcastic, hateful, and downright nasty. Most are directed at his opponents.
Jeb Bush never uses his last name on television, signage, materials, et cetera. Is he ashamed of the name Bush? A pretty sad situation. Go, Jeb. Congrats at Lindsay Graham SC, you just got four points in your home state of SC. Far better than zero nationally. You are only 26 points behind me.
And after Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders lost control of his microphone to black lives matters protesters, Trump tweeted this big. How is Bernie Sanders going to defend our country if he can't defend his own microphone? Very sad.
Trump went after the president during the Ebola scare. I am starting to think there is something seriously wrong with President Obama's mental health. Why won't he stop the flights? Psycho. In another tweet he asked if the president is stupid or arrogant.
Trump has nearly four million followers on Twitter. So his tweets hardly go unnoticed. His favorite word when firing off these zingers seem to be dumb and dopey. He uses the word great a lot too. But mainly about himself and things he likes.
Trump goes after the media too retweeting this about FOX News' Megyn Kelly after she returned from vacation. The bimbo back in town. I hope not for long.
This about Anderson Cooper. What a waste of time being interviewed by Anderson Cooper. When he puts on really stupid talking head like Tim O'Brien, dumb guy with no clue.
Pundits are a target too. Charles Krauthammer in the line of fire with Trump calling him a totally overrated clown who speaks without knowing facts.
And this tweet, one of the dumber and least respected of political pundits is Chris Solis "the Washington Post" at the fix. Moron hates my poll numbers.
Celebrities are also fair game in Trump's twitter verse. Trump tweeted this last year about singer Katy Perry. Katy Perry must have been drunk when she married Russell Brand. Brand boldly fired back. @realDonaldTrump, are you drunk when you write these tweets? Or does that foam you spray on your bald head make you high?
Whatever it is that inspires Trump's tweets, a "Washington Post" headline summed it up this way. Your next president, Donald Trump, basically tweets like a 12-year-old.
Randi Kaye, CNN, New York.
COOPER: Back with the panel of whom remember life before twitter was a thing let along a political weapon of war. Donna Brazile, Jeffrey Lord, and Amanda Carpenter.
Is there a lesson, Amanda, in the way Trump uses twitters a lesson for other candidates?
CARPENTER: Sure. It shows Donald Trump for really who he is. He is a bully. He is, likes to trash talk people and particularly against women. He goes for the gutter. I mean if you look at his speeches. A lot of time, stream of consciousness, kind of rallying same old things. These are things he chooses to say. They're not staff writing for him. This is him, his own personal thoughts. And I certainly don't think this is the kind of language that is suitable for a president and maybe people find it cathartic. It proves that he will shake up Washington.
But at some point, imagine him in a presidential debate stage against Hillary Clinton bringing up Monica Lewinsky and calling her a bimbo. That is not a debate I want to see. And hopefully no one else does.
COOPER: Jeffrey, it is interesting -- I mean, you do get the sense Trump is actually writing these tweets, you know. And if you look at the times on these tweets are sent. It is like 2:00 a.m., 3:00 a.m.
LORD: Right. Right.
COOPER: I mean, he clearly focuses on this stuff an awful lot to the point where he says about not wanting to run negative ads. I mean, is that --
LORD: I wrote, I wrote a column about this which I haven't yet posted. Which basically supposed that he was president and on the, you know, once the inaugural was over, the parades and balls, he slips into Lincoln's bed and starts to tweet about Vladimir Putin, you know, Vlad, you're a loser.
The serious point here is that there have been a lot of president who have taken technology to a new level. I do mean this seriously. Abraham Lincoln with telegraph, Franklin Roosevelt with radio, John F. Kennedy with television. We all know what happen to Richard Nixon and the tapes. Hillary Clinton, not a president is, is mired in this email business.
I think that twitter is the wave of the future here. And I think he knows how to use it and he uses it very well to his advantage. And I think his opponents just have been basically clueless about this whether they will pick up now, I don't know. But there is a lot of history about this kind of thing with presidents and technology.
[20:20:04] COOPER: Donna, for those who don't like Donald Trump, though, it is just another example of him having an incredibly thin skin. I mean, and I guess the question is to Amanda's point is can a president have such thin skin? I mean, if he -- looked like we are having technical trouble. Is Donna still there? Jeffrey, I think you are the only one left. And somehow the other
people have just vanished. I don't know if Donald Trump has control of our airways at this point.
LORD: You know he tweets favorable thing as about me, Anderson.
COOPER: Well, that's good. We balance each other out.
Can though, a president -- I mean, do you believe he has thin skin? And can a president be somebody who is engage in, you know, these kinds of fights?
LORD: You know, I know that he believes in. He has written about. I mean, how you need to challenge. People go after you. You need to stand up. Challenge them. Not only for dealing with that person. But for sending the message to everybody else, you can't be messed with.
And you know, when you extrapolate that to the political world, there are a lot of Americans who believe that that is one of the problems we have in this country. This is one of the reasons they responded so well to Ronald Reagan. And of course, as we all remember the day he was sworn in, the Iranians released the hostages. That kind of message is coming through here regardless of all the individual things he may be tweeted.
COOPER: Jeffrey Lord, I can hear Donald Trump tweeting right now.
Thanks for being us. Donna Brazile, Amanda Carpenter as well.
Coming up next, we got -- just got some new details in the ambush murder of a Houston area sheriff's deputy. New information about the alleged killer's mental health history. We have that, his day in court, and the debate over race and justice. Some say is vital and others say is putting police lives in danger.
[20:25:46] COOPER: Breaking news tonight in the murder of a Houston sheriff's deputy and the national uproar surrounding it. New information that could shed light on the alleged killer's mental state.
The plain facts surrounding at information are terrible enough. Friday night somebody came up behind the Harris County sheriff's deputy Darren Goforth and opened fire with a 40 caliber semiautomatic pistol. Investigator said the killer emptied the entire clip, 14 rounds, plus one already in the chamber into the deputy. He was a 10- year veteran with department and a father of a young son and daughter.
Tonight, a suspect is in custody. And as we said, more is becoming known about his mental health history and his trouble with the law in the past. Deputy Goforth's wife and two kids are living a nightmare, plain and simple. Law enforcement is grieving all across the country and so are people all across the area and the country as well. However, there is also much more. Deputy Goforth is white, his
alleged killer is African-American. This has happened, of course, against a backdrop of protest and a heated debate over the death of African-American men, women and teenagers during encountered with police. It is that protest and rhetoric that Harris County sheriff, Ron Hickman, focused on over the weekend.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHERIFF RON HICKMAN, HARRIS COUNTY, TEXAS: Our system of justice absolutely requires law enforcement be present to protect our community. So at any point with the rhetoric ramps up to the point where calculated, cold-blooded assassination of police officers happened. This rhetoric has gotten out of control. We have heard Black lives matter. All lives matter. Well, cops lives matter, too. So why don't we just drop the qualifier and just say lives matter and take that to the bank.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: We are going to talk to Sheriff Hickman about that in just a moment.
But first, Ed Lavandera joins us with the latest who just learned about the suspect's background. What do you know, Ed?
ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is interesting, back in October of 2012, it appears that Shannon Miles, the 30-year-old man accused of capital murder and facing the death penalty in the murder of the deputy Goforth was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, the weapon being his hand back in October of 2012.
This happened in Austin, Texas. And according to the prosecutor on the case, Miles had gotten into an argument at a homeless shelter. Apparently, had been spending some time at the homeless shelter in Austin, Texas. Got into an argument and fight with the homeless man there at the shelter over the remote control and television set in the recreation room. He was charged with aggravated, assault. And before the case could go to trial, he was found mentally incompetent by a psychiatrist and a judge agreed with that. Miles was then sent to a state mental hospital for six months. When he was brought become to Travis County to face those criminal charges, the prosecutors could not find we are told the other homeless man in the case. So the case couldn't be brought to trial. But also, obviously, mental health issues playing a significant role in that case.
And we also learned here in Harris County that prosecutors have issued a subpoena going after the hospital records of another mental hospital here in the Houston area for any records pertaining to Shannon Miles as well. In the documents the prosecutors say they don't know the exact dates of the treatment. But obviously prosecutors trying to get their hand on more medical, mental health records.
COOPER: The DA presented evidence in court today. What do they have linking the suspect -- linking this guy to the killing? LAVANDERA: Well, they had several things. And really, the most
detailed account of the way everything unfolded here in the gas station parking lot. The prosecutors say they have ballistic evidence, tying the shell casings found at the murder scene to a weapon that was discovered in the garage of Shannon Miles' home, not about a half mile here from this site. And they also detailed, as you mentioned there, in the introduction, the gruesome way this attack happened. Shannon Miles running up behind the deputy Goforth, had no idea he was being targeted. And according to prosecutors, Shannon Miles unloaded 15 rounds into the deputy.
COOPER: Just awful. And he has had a prior record. In fact, he said a number of run-ins with police, right?
LAVANDERA: Yes, before this aggravated assault back in October of 2012, everything that we found really dated between 2005 and 2009.
[20:30:00] And it really, a lot of it was misdemeanor situations where it was time served. He spent a handful of days in jail. But other than that, there has been very little information about his background here. We know that according to his Facebook page he bounced around from a couple of different colleges here in the Houston area. But there has been really no statements being made publicly from his family or friends here. Since the days that he was, since the day he was arrested on Saturday afternoon.
COOPER: All right, Ed, I appreciate it. Ed Lavandera. Those remarks that we showed to you earlier by Sheriff Hickman. The reaction to them as well as other statements on all sides have turned. What was already a tragedy into something beyond that. And for better or worse, fair or not, appropriate or not. Many appear to be squeezing this into an already heated debate about race, and justice, and policing. Now with that in mind, as well as the emotional body blow his department has taken, I spoke with Sheriff Hickman directly about all of it earlier this evening.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Sheriff, before we start, I just want to express our condolences on the murder of Deputy Goforth and our thoughts and prayers are certainly with his family and his family throughout your department. First of all, what kind of guy was he? What do you want people to know about this deputy?
HICKMAN: Well, what we want the people to know is that the person that we lost was one of the good guys. His wife describes him as easy-going. Her best friend. And the guy that you actually wanted wearing the badge and the uniform. He was his five-year-old son's hero. His daughter can't imagine living without him.
COOPER: I understand the suspect has a record that goes back many years. Not much of a social media presence. I'm wondering is there any new evidence pointing to his alleged motive?
HICKMAN: We continue to research that issue. Certainly, we are interested in -- in any connection the two of them ever had. Thus far we have not found a connection.
COOPER: At this point, do you still believe that Deputy Goforth was solely targeted because of his uniform?
HICKMAN: At this juncture, we find no other motivation other than the fact that he was wearing a uniform which makes it purely a random kind of issue.
COOPER: Over the weekend. You said, we have heard black lives matter. All lives matter. Well, cops' lives matter too. And then you went on to say at any point where the rhetoric ramps up to the point where calculated cold-blooded assassination of police officers happens, this rhetoric has gotten out of control. To be clear, do you believe that the Black Lives Matter movement is somehow responsible for the Deputy Goforth's death?
HICKMAN: One can speculate that the rhetoric in our area, of course, we are only a short distance down the road from Waller County where the Bland case has elevated attention to those issues, to a very high level. So, it isn't very far a stretch to believe that that kind of rhetoric could influence someone.
COOPER: But you have no direct evidence at this point of what was in this alleged killer's mind?
HICKMAN: No, certainly not.
COOPER: There has been some criticism of your statement. A Texas state representative, Garnet Coleman said that he thinks your statement was politicizing this death. And he says it "shows a lack of understanding of what is occurring in this country when it comes to the singling out of African-Americans." I want you to be able to respond to that. Do you think there is any validity to the concerns of those in this black lives matter movement?
HICKMAN: Well I think he may misunderstand my purpose there. There will be people who want to make this a political issue. That's not my interest. I have visited with the spouse of the slain deputy, and she very clearly indicated she wants to communicate that we are on target. All lives do matter. And if we have any connection whatsoever with the public, we want to convey that message.
COOPER: An organizer with a group called the Organization for the Black Struggle, he also criticized your comment saying that, that the Black Lives Matter movement has never condoned any violence against police officers. And that if you can't understand why people saying, why people are saying black lives matter, then that's the problem. I want you to be able to respond to that.
HICKMAN: There will people that pervert this, twist it for their own purposes. And to pursue their own agendas. And clearly my agenda here is to make sure that we tone down the temperament of all rhetoric. When it gets so inflammatory.
COOPER: So, to those who say they will continue to protest in the Black Lives Matter movement, what do you say? Is it -- is your concern just the kind of bringing down some of the rhetoric? Is it the movement in general?
HICKMAN: I don't think the movement in general is what we are talking about. I think what we are talking about extremes.
HICKMAN: When you start talking taking people's lives, and taking pictures. You know, killing cops on radio talk show. Kind of rhetoric can get out of hand.
COOPER: The president of the fraternal order of police has said that he believes this should be labeled a hate crime. Do you think that should be the case?
HICKMAN: I think if we can demonstrate that he was isolated and selected because he is wearing a uniform, I think that would qualify.
COOPER: Sheriff Hickman. I appreciate you joining us. And again, I'm so sorry it's under these circumstances.
HICKMAN: Thank you so much.
COOPER: You just heard the sheriff's take on the case against the man who allegedly murdered Harris County sheriff's deputy Darren Goforth. The bigger question was he targeted simply for wearing a law enforcement uniform? And is the Black Lives Matter movement in some way encouraging it? Some people are pointing to this rally as proof it was. We'll ask our panel when we continue.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CROWD (CHANTING): Pigs in a blanket, fry'em like bacon. Pigs in a blanket, fry'em like bacon.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: You heard the Harris County sheriff, Ron Hickman, before the break suggesting that absence another motive, he did rhetoric surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement may have contributed to the killing of one of his deputies Friday night.
COOPER: Milwaukee sheriff who is African-American went far beyond that. Speaking shortly after the deputy's murder he said that war has been declared on police officers, a war led, and I'm quoting here, by some high profile people one of them coming out of the White House and one coming out of the United States Department of Justice. Then there was this video emerging of the weekend during the Black Lives Matter in March in St. Paul, Minnesota.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CROWD (CHANTING): Fry them like bacon! Pigs in a blanket! Fry them like bacon! Pigs in a blanket! Fry them like bacon! Pigs in a blanket! Fry them like bacon!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Marchers there saying "Pigs in a blanket, fry them like bacon! That was only one chant that was chanted throughout this protest. But a lot of people have been focusing on that. Here to talk about all of it. CNN law enforcement analyst and former NYPD detective Harry Houck, also CNN political commentator and "New York Times" opinion columnist, Charles Blow, and CNN legal analyst and former federal prosecutor Sonny Hostin. Sonny, you hear the sheriff saying, all lives matter and that this kind of rhetoric coming out of the Black Lives Matter movement may have contributed to the death of this deputy?
SONNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: You know, I've said from the very beginning. The investigation is ongoing. We are at the very beginning of the investigation, and we can't, I think, link the Black Lives Matter movement to this killing at this point.
COOPER: And the sheriff when I actually asked him about that does say well, it is speculation. We have no idea what the motive 'tis is.
HOSTIN: It is completely speculative. And we do have that little thing called the First Amendment. And people are allowed to protest. People are allowed to give voice to their frustrations. I will say this "pigs in a blanket, fry them like bacon." I mean I think that's so ridiculous, it's so inflammatory, it's disgusting. I don't think that that's appropriate. But I also don't think it's appropriate link the two. And now that we know that mental illness is something that this person, this defendant, suffered from, I think the larger conversation, Anderson, is the conversation that I've been trying to bring up over and over and over again when it comes to mental health issues and gun control. I talked about it when the two journalists were murdered by someone that's mentally ill, and now I think we have another incident of somebody with mental illness being able to get a gun. When are we going to start talking about that instead of always sort of hinging these things on race?
COOPER: Charles, when somebody says, look all lives matter. And you shouldn't use the term Black Lives Matter, all lives matter. What do you say to that?
CHARLES BLOW, NEW YORK TIMES OP-ED COLUMNIST: Well, I think in general that is a great concept. And I wish that all of America believed that all lives matter? However, what we see is desperate treatments of different segments of the population, particularly along racial lines in America. Which looks like a devaluation of specific segments of the population, specifically black people. And I think that until America says, in its core, that all lives matter, it is appropriate and in fact, necessary to point out the lives that America seems to value less.
COOPER: And when you say America, you are specifically speaking about the court system. The system of justice?
BLOW: Yes, I am adamant that this is conversation always hinging around police and people of color is too narrow. That the police are simply the tip of the sphere and not the sphere itself. That you have to look at the entire system. You know, the state as an actor. And the state becomes us. The state becomes America. And all of America is arrayed against black people. So, you look at desperate treatments, all the way from interactions with police, all the way through the criminal justice system. All the way through how people are sentenced. And longer sentenced, all the way to the death penalty itself.
And they are desperate.
HOSTIN: He is right. The statistics do support that African- American, men in particular, are treated differently than white men in our criminal justice system.
COOPER: Let me bring in Harry here. Harry, is that premature?
HARRY HOUCK, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: How is that so?
COOPER: Go ahead.
HOSTIN: Just look at the stats, Harry.
HOUCK: But then the statistics actually prove that - yeah, the stats show that there are more black men incarcerated. I see that. I know that. That means they're committing crimes. I mean you are sitting here and listening to Charles talk about this. It's like - like all of white America, all of America is against black America. That's crazy. And that's the problem.
BLOW: No, the problem is you are putting words like that into my mouth. That statement itself becomes a racist statement. For you to then take America.
HOUCK: Charles, you just said it. I let you speak. And you are going to let me speak, Harry. When you take America to simply say, that means, all of black America is against white America. That is a racist statement. In and of itself, Harry. And you have to step back from your perch and look at what you are saying.
BLOW: That's a racist statement. You are the expert on racist statements now.
HOUCK: It is specifically racist.
HOUCK: Because what I am looking at, targets.
BLOW: Oh, of course, yeah.
HOUCK: The people who ...
BLOW: Because I disagree with you, I'm a racist, right? That's your narrative.
HOUCK: One at a time. Let Charles finish and then Harry ...
BLOW: I would like for you to do that. That would be the right thing to do, Harry. So, when you look at that. When you look at who is the target. And who is treated negatively by the system, which becomes America, that becomes black and brown people.
BLOW: That is just a fact. You can't argue the fact. You can have your opinion. But you don't have the right to your own set of facts.
COOPER: I want Harry to be able to respond.
HOUCK: Right, that's your opinion.
COOPER: Do you believe there's a different system of justice, Harry, for African-Americans in this country? That they are treated differently in the court system or in the justice system?
HOUCK: No, I don't. Listen, I was in the system - I was in the system for 25 years. I have never seen that. You know what it takes for somebody to go to jail in the City of New York no matter what color they are for Christ's sake? You know, it happens all the time. I mean it is amazing to me how you can sit there and say - well, let me ask Charles a question. Charles, you assume how many people that are black in jail. How many do you assume of them are innocent?
BLOW: No, let's back up another way and look up - When you were talking about you being on the streets of New York. Let's talk about stop and frisk on the streets of New York. And we look at the numbers, the numbers on that. The facts on that. Is that nine out of 10 of the people who are stopped and frisked were black or brown. And nine out of 10 of those never got a charge. That means that they never did anything wrong, right?
HOUCK: Right, they were probably stopped because there was just somehow reasonable suspicion.
BLOW: I'm sorry - I'm sorry - You can't look at that and say that is just somehow - just a fluke. People just happen to suspect. And when you looked at the number of people who actually were armed, of that group, white people were more likely to be armed than the black people. And you know why? It wasn't because white people are running around in packs with weapons. It was the officers were more likely to stop white people for a cause. And not just because of the color of their skins. And that - that is just the fact, Harry.
HOUCK: Where are you getting this?
BLOW: And the fact that you cannot recognize that ...
HOSTIN: It is in the judicial opinion.
COOPER: No one listens if everybody talks over. Harry, I want you to be able to respond.
HOUCK: OK, that's an assumption on your part, Charles.
HOUCK: And we talk about this as - let me tell you something. The black community, all right, is where there is most of the crime. Let's ay in New York City.
HOSTIN: Be careful, Harry. That is not true.
HOUCK: Chicago, Los Angeles.
HOSTIN: Be careful. Black aren't ...
HOUCK: It is very true.
HOSTIN: committing more crime. Law enforcement officers are targeting African-Americans in their communities and other communities.
HOUCK: Police officers are in these parts of the city because there is crime and ...
HOSTIN: And there's Supreme Court opinions, all you have got to do is read, Harry.
COOPER: Let him finish. Go ahead. Finish, Harry..
HOUCK: That is why there are more stops in these neighborhoods, because that's where the crime is committed.
COOPER: OK, and Sonny, you are saying that's not true.
HOUCK: Police officers will have reasonable suspicion to make a stop.
HOSTIN: Cops like - that are the problem, unfortunately. I mean the bottom line, Anderson, is that you look ....
HOUCK: I'm the problem, yeah.
HOSTIN: You are the problem, Harry. You know, the bottom line is when you ...
HOUCK: Now, I've got two complaints in my whole entire career against me.
HOSTIN: If you read - If you read any Supreme Court decision, if you read any legal scholar that has - and they've studied these issues, it is very clear that African-Americans ...
HOUCK: Who studied? A bunch of liberals.
HOSTIN: aren't just by virtue of their race committing more crime. They're targeted unfairy by law enforcement officers and then they're treated unfairly when they get into the system. I myself, as a former prosecutor, know that to be true. I am ashamed that I was somehow part of that process. But that is the bottom line. That is the process. And we have got to talk about institutional racism.
HOUCK: Then you perpetrated some of the stuff.
HOSTIN: Inherited in our society.
COOPER: I want to give you ...
HOUCK: And you perpetrated some of these injustices against blacks. And that ...
BLOW: Let's actually - to the bigger picture, right? This idea of like, oh, we are only in your neighborhood because that's where the crime is. As if all the black people just one day woke up and said I want to move to an area that is high crime. Oh, I want to live in a place that is, that is plagued by extreme poverty. Right? That is not what happened. Any people, anybody who's ever studied history understand that is not what happened. That these neighborhoods are actually designed by government policy. It is government policies, lending policies, it is red lining policies and then basically creates these neighborhood and then we.
HOUCK: Liberals like you created them.
BLOW: Then we want - please stop talking while I am talking. I don't like that. And then we wonder why these pockets of extreme poverty have issues. And not, we take no responsibility as America that we have created these pockets of extreme poverty. That becomes the systemic part of the racism argument on this story.
COOPER: We're going to have, we've got to leave it there. I'm sorry, but it is important discussion. We will have more of it. Harry, thank you. Sonny Hostin, Charles Blow as well. Los Angeles police officers are doing something unprecedented today. Doing their jobs wearing body cameras. L.A. is now the largest city to embrace the technology. Up next the controversy surrounding them. Should police have access to those images while writing incident reports.
COOPER: Today police in Los Angeles began using body cameras. Over the next few months, more than 7,000 cameras will be deployed across the force making L.A. the largest U.S. city to use the technology on a wide scale. The killings of unarmed civilians by police officers, have fueled the push to make body cameras mandatory for officers. Other large cities including New York are testing the cameras. We have seen over and over how body cameras can be a powerful reality check on officers accounts of shootings as well as showing people how dangerous officers' jobs really are. New questions are being raised by the case in L.A. used to watch produced body cameras. Miguel Marquez has the latest.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAY TENSING: Take your seatbelt off. Go and take your seatbelt off. Stop! Stop!
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: When University of Cincinnati police officer Ray Tensing shot and killed Sam Dubose, the initial police report claimed the officer was dragged, almost run over, Officer Tensing forced to shoot the driver. And listen to audio of Officer Tensing justifying the shooting just minutes after the incident. Another officer even telling him, stop talking.
RAY TENSING: A guy was going to run me over. I just shot one round. (INAUDIBLE). -run me over. He's drugging me. Not to get run over, I've got to stop him. I shot one round at him - got my hand caught in the car. I was ...
MARQUEZ: But video from the officer's body camera appears to contradict his account. So much so, Officer Tensing was fired now facing murder charges.
TENSING: Get out of the car!
MARQUEZ: Another example, the case of Sandra Bland where dash cam video with a microphone on the officer's uniform paints a much different picture than the arrest report from Texas state trooper Bryan Encinia. In it, Trooper Encinia says, the 28-year-old became combative and uncooperative.
BRIAN ENCINIA: It omits the trooper tried to make her extinguish her cigarette, when she refused it escalated to this.
ENCINIA: I will - get out, now!
MARQUEZ: Trooper Encinia used a taser as a threat. That, too, left out of his police report. After Bland was taken away, Encinia is heard on his own body camera giving a different account of the incident by phone to what sounds like a supervisor.
ENCINIA: Tried to de-escalate it. And it wasn't getting anywhere at all. And I tried to put the taser away. You know, I tried talking to her. Calming her down. And that was not working.
MARQUEZ: While video often confirms or supports an officer's account, nationwide in incident after incident either body, dashboard or cell phone cameras, have at times told a different story than the official line. The country's largest police force, NYPD under court order is now testing body cameras. 54 officers voluntarily using them. And the program will soon expand to 1,000 officers. Eventually, body cameras for all 35,000 NYPD officers could become standard issue. But the rules about usage are evolving. And there is one sticking point in particular should officers be allowed to review their own video before filling out police reports? PHILIP K. EURE, INSPECTOR GENERAL FOR NYPD: If you allow officers to
look at the video, from the body camera, in advance of getting their statement, that might possibly taint what the officer tells the investigator.
MARQUEZ: Phil Eure, the recently named inspector general for the NYPD issued a report on body camera policy. When they should be turned on. How data will be saved. And whether cops will have access to their own videos. Something the police commissioner here says they should.
WILLIAM BRATTON, NYPD COMMISSIONER: I'm not intending to use cameras to play a game of gotcha with the cops. The idea, several months after an incident seeing if he can recall what a transpired moment to moment on a video. It doesn't work that way.
MARQUEZ: It's a sensitive point here in the arrest and eventual death of Eric Garner, who was selling unpacked cigarettes. NYPD reports left out critical details that cell phone video captured. Specifically the chokehold. And that Garner called out for help. Uttering 11 times.
ERIC GARNER: I can't breathe. I can't breathe.
MARQUEZ: Before falling unconscious.
EURE: Policy in place that allows officers to look at videos in advance of writing their report or giving their statement on a police complaint; that is not the sort of thing that's going to build trust in the police.
MARQUEZ: Policy for NYPD's federally mandated program of 1,000 officers wearing body cameras will be recommended by a court appointed federal monitor next year. Miguel Marques, CNN. New York.
COOPER: We are live all throughout our next hour. And our live coverage continues of breaking news. The State Department has just released some 7,000 e-mails that Hillary Clinton kept on her private server in her home. CNN is digging into them to see what is there. Details ahead.