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Pope Francis Has Arrived in United States; Donald Trump Stands By His Response to Controversial Town Hall Question; Fiorina Trying to Build on Debate Performance; Reality Check: Trump and Fiorina's Track Records. Aired 8-9p ET

Aired September 22, 2015 - 20:00   ET


[20:00:14] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Hey, good evening from a very exciting night here in Washington, D.C. We're at the Catholic University of America in front of the largest Roman Catholic Church in America. It's a venue far too small for the crowds expected to see Pope Francis celebrate mass here tomorrow. It's a beautiful location.

Instead, as you can tell, it's going to happen outside. They're calling it the mass in the grass. It will be just one of when big moments in the Pope's first visit to the United States. It's going to take him to New York and Philadelphia as well.

Tonight, what he hopes to accomplish, who he's hoping to reach, how his message is being received and the backstage details, all the really unprecedented measures that are being taken to keep him safe as the man called the people's Pope gets ready to meet the people.


COOPER (voice-over): Just before 4:00 p.m. this afternoon, the Boeing 777 carries Pope Francis, plane dubbed Shepherd One, touched down in America.

Hundreds were on hand at Andrews Air Force base including a high school band to welcome the Holy Father. Finally, the pontiff who's never been to the United States in all of his 78 years emerged.

And as he made his way down the steps, the moment that millions of Catholics in the U.S. and people of all faiths have been waiting for arrived. For the first time, Pope Francis stepped on American soil.

President Obama and the first family there to greet him as he made those historic first steps. So, too, was vice president Biden, the first ever catholic vice president and on a historic day of firsts, never before had a sitting American president and vice president welcomed another leader together at Andrews Air Force base.

It was a sign of honor and respect for a man who's become a symbol of peace and hope, not just for the 1.2 billion Catholics around the world, but for, as one representative of the Vatican said, any people of goodwill.

Pope Francis chatted with children from nearby catholic schools, then met privately with President Obama and other dignitaries in the distinguished visitor's lounge at Andrews Air Force base.

Ten minutes later he made his way back outside and into a car that caught everyone's attention, an Italian-made fiat. A humble choice of transportation, but not out of character. In visits to other countries he's often traveled in a Ford focus.

The fiat flanked by a legion of SUVs wound its way toward Washington. On lookers lined the route waving at Pope Francis welcoming him to America. And as the papal motorcade arrive at the Vatican ambassador's residence, the greeting was pure jubilation.

Pope Francis will stay here while in Washington, settled in for one quiet night before embarking on his whirlwind tour of America.


COOPER: Well, in the city that's known for going to bed early, especially during the week, there is plenty of stuff happening here overnight. Much of it understandably out of view as security teams gear up for what is going to be a very full day tomorrow.

Some of it, though, plain to see and pretty rare. For example, there could be huge crowds just near the White House at 4:00 in the morning hours before the actual event when security gates open to get a spot to see tomorrow's papal tour of the ellipse and the national mall. Pope Francis will be received by President Obama at a south lawn welcoming ceremony followed by some private time for the two. Now, chances are given what they agree and disagree on, they will have plenty to talk about.

CNN's Jim Acosta is at the White House for us tonight.

So do we have any idea, Jim, what the president and the Pope are going to discuss tomorrow?

JIM ACOSTA, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, the White House is engaging in some Vatican-like secrecy on this topic even though the president and the Pope are allies on issues ranging from climate change to income inequality, to Cuba. The White House is not revealing what these two men will discuss behind closed doors.

After the president greets the Pope here at the White House, the two leaders will speak to the world. Pope Francis is expected to deliver his remarks in English, then they will hold a one-on-one meeting in the oval office with only translators in the room. That is all before Pope Francis addresses Congress on Thursday. Again, that speech expected in English.

You know, Anderson, White House press secretary Josh Earnest cautioned the president won't be going into tomorrow with a political agenda. Perhaps that's because this Pope can be full of surprises. After their last meeting in Rome last year, we asked the president were there any hot-button social issues that were raised? And Mr. Obama responded, the Pope unexpectedly brought up immigration reform.

As the first Latin-American Pope, Anderson, it's hard to imagine immigration won't come up again. It's almost a certainty they will talk about Cuba. Pope Francis just came from the island. And of course, the Pope helped broker that agreement to reestablish diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba.

[20:05:06] COOPER: And the crowd there at the White House for the Pope's welcoming ceremony tomorrow, how large is it expected to be? Because I know this president has come under criticism from some in the United States because of small number of the guests that were invited.

ACOSTA: Well, there will be the crowd at the White House and on the streets of Washington. And from what we can see from the security precautions here, Anderson, they are planning something on the scale or almost the scale of the inauguration of the president. This is going to be big stuff.

Now, take a look at this video we're showing you right now. You can see a glimpse of how the stage has been set on the south lawn of the White House. Fifteen thousand visitors are expected to squeeze onto the south lawn to witness the Pope's official arrival. White House officials have invited what they're describing as a diversity of spectators. And we know there will be some pro-choice and gay rights advocates in attendance. And the White House insist that's not some kind of message they're sending to the Pope. It's more of a reflection of where the country is, where the Catholic Church is. But Anderson, thousands more will be ling the streets of Washington all trying to maneuver around the security that will be in place. They may like the fiat they say today. Will probably see more of the Pope- mobile tomorrow on the streets of this nation's capital, Anderson.

COOPER: It is going to be a very big day tomorrow.

Jim Acosta, thank you very much.

Let's get perspective now from CNN contributor Bruce Feller, from author of "Walking the Bible in sacred journeys," also CNN senior Vatican analyst John Allen, author of "the Francis miracle," and Father James Martin who has written "the Jesuit's guide to almost everything."

Thank you, all, for being with us.

John, first of all, you rode with the Pope here from Cuba. He was asked about his portrayal by some in the United States, in the west as kind of being on the left. What did he say about that?

JOHN ALLEN, CNN SENIOR VATICAN ANALYST: Well, Anderson, you know, I have been on every one of Francis' foreign trips basely. And here's one thing I learned. Flying on the papal plane is in many ways not a very fun experience. The seats are uncomfortable, the food is mediocre. But I'll give it this, the in-flight entertainment is spectacular.

COOPER: Because it's the Pope.

ALLEN: Because it's the Pope coming back and engaging in these free- wheeling no holds barred exchange with the press. Today, he was asked about perceptions in the United States that he's a leftist. The reference was, of course, to the recent "Newsweek" cover is the Pope still catholic? About which he said, listen, if you need me to recite the creed, which is the thing at mass Catholics say to echo their beliefs, he said I'm ready to do it any time.

And he said, you know, I know it's true that some people perceive me as a leftist. But he says that's really a misconception, a misinterpretation, maybe things have not been explained well enough because he said all I am doing is echoing the social doctrine of the Catholic Church, which is the church is official code of teaching about social matters.

And so, what he wanted to do is say I'm not some kind - I'm nor Hugo Chavez (INAUDIBLE), OK. What I am doing is trying to act as a spokesperson for the corporate body of teaching in the Catholic Church on issues such as the family, immigration, the environment and so on.

COOPER: The emphasis that this Pope puts on issues, though, is different than, perhaps, many people had expected him to. There was some talk that even those who elected him thought he was going to be, perhaps, more conservative or like his predecessor, though he hasn't changed church doctrine, where he chooses to put the emphasis does seem to be somewhat different.

BRUCE FELLER, AUTHOR, WALKING THE BIBLE: I see Francis as really the first Pope of the 21st century, OK. So John Paul II got quite ill in the late 1990s. Benedict was in effect was a caretaker, unloved, uncharismatic figure and along comes Francis. And I think that besides the sort the genuine mist the people relate to and the authenticity, he's tapped into things that are very contemporary.

Number one, he's from Latin America. It's worth repeating that in 1970, 70 percent of the world's Catholics were in the northern hemisphere, 30 percent in the southern. Today it's exactly reversed, 30 percent in the north and 70 percent in the south. And of course, he just flew here from the south on purpose to send that message.

And also he's in effect the Pope of the 99 percent. So long before this was a conversation in the west, the first trip he took after becoming Pope outside of Rome was to go south to the Mediterranean where there was this graveyard where refugees were coming across from Africa. He was on this story years before it became what it is now, the dominant story.

So I think in his personality, he has sort of melded with what's in the time and helped the church sort of turn the page from where it was. Sex abuse, you know, scandal in the Vatican church, to where it is now, a new way of relating to people and the people are definitely (INAUDIBLE).

COOPER: And whether it's based on his life experience, Father, or just his beliefs, but he does put an emphasis on rolling up your sleeves, on being out there with the people, with the poor. You know, I think Matthew 25 is incredibly important to him, the idea that, you know, in the final days Christ said you will be judged based on whether you visited the sick and cared for the poor. For him, that is the essence of the gospel.

FATHER JAMES MARTIN, EDITOR-AT-LARGE, AMERICA MAGAZINE: It is. I mean, as you say, it goes right back to Jesus and so it's not a controversial catholic teacher in Christian teaching. It also flows from his Jesuit background. He's the first Pope from a religious order since the 19th century, which means that he's the first one to have taken a vow of poverty, chastity and obedience. And as Jesuits, we take that vow of poverty seriously, live simply but we also work with the poor. And we're very involved in social justice.

So this is something that was sort of part of his makeup from the get- go. And he brought that into papacy. And I think one of the things that happened when he was elected is, (INAUDIBLE), I think cardinals forgot they elected a Jesuit. They elected someone who has taken the vow of poverty, who would worked with the poor, the one that took it very seriously as well.

[20:10:31] COOPER: And I mean, one of the things he is going to do in Washington after addressing a joint meeting of Congress is he's not lunching on Capitol Hill in some fancy dining room. He's going to lunch with homeless people, mentally ill.

MARTIN: Yes, and each of the three cities he's meeting with the poor. He's meeting with the catholic charity's homeless shelter in D.C. He is meeting with a poor school in Harlem. And then he is going to a prison in Philadelphia. And you know, we always say Jesus taught by words and by deeds. This Pope knows that he is teaching by gestures as well, by who he spends his time with, by who he, you know, sort of chooses to kind of lift up. You know, in front of the public.

COOPER: How much opposition is there to this pope within the Vatican, within the Catholic Church as well?

ALLEN: Well, I mean, first of all, I covered three Popes. John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and now Francis. There was some internal opposition to each one of them. And then this is no novel. Again, frankly, the story goes all the way back to St. Peter. We know from the New Testament that there was a disagreement between Peter and Paul.

COOPER: There is always been that fighting --

ALLEN: Yes. Francis is the 266th Pope. And he is the 266th pope to have problems with some of his bishops. It's an old story.

COOPER: But six months into being Pope, I mean, he publicly addressed some of the problems with the Vatican with the curry. I mean, he talked about --

ALLEN: Sure. That famous speech where the Christmas speech to the curry, you know, where he talked about the disease of careerism and so on.

I mean, listen, the question is, is there some resistance to him? Sure. But I'll give you two observations. One, there's always been resistance to Popes. And two, I don't see any evidence having covered Francis day in and day out for two-and-a-half years now that he's particularly hobbled by it. I mean, I couldn't point to a single thing that I think he wanted to do that he has been prevented from doing because of internal opposition.

COOPER: It seems very important to this Pope that there not be any closed doors in this church. That's one of the things he's actually said. That sort of everybody in a way should be welcome. Even if, I mean, he's talked about this year of mercy coming up. And sort of not changing, again, doctrine, but having a greater acceptance of those who have been divorced. Making easier to get annulments in marriages.

FELLER: Look, I think in religion in general, there's two approaches. You've got rules or bridges. You can say this is our rules, this is our doctrine, and take it or leave it. Or you can build bridges to people. And I think what he's doing is building bridges. The other way of looking at it would be justice or mercy, right? You can say these are the rules or you can say you know what, you are hurting in some way and I'm going to reach out.

I think what he does continually is show he acts really as a pastor more than a theologian. So he is less interested in the doctrine I think instinctually. And in trying to reach out to people. And I think that one of the reason it's resonating in this country like beyond the Catholics and Jesuits and people that we are talking inside the church is, we're coming off the summer of Trump, OK. We're coming off -- look at the magazines. Our heroes are businesspeople and celebrities. OK? And we have this idea in this country that technology or science is going to solve every problem. And it's not going to solve every problem.

I think the idea that the country in its entirety is pausing right now to hear this message, I think says that we are still thirsty. It's not all about efficiency and bottom line in money.

COOPER: Father, do you expect him to talk politics on this trip? I mean, because he's been very vocal about global warming. He said that the planet is starting to look like it's kind of full of filth. Do you expect to hear that?

MARTIN: Yes, well for me that's not politics. I mean, that's sort of part of catholic social teaching at this point as he has said. It's funny, I always find it interesting that politicians say well, when I agree with the Pope, he's talking about spiritual matters. But when I don't agree with him, it's political, you know, basically.

You know, care for the environment, care for the poor, right? Care for refugees and migrants. Those are all deeply religious questions because Jesus asked us to care for the least of our brothers and sisters, right? And, you know, God asked us to as the book of Genesis said to till the earth and keep it, but in cyclical said, we have done way too much tilling and not enough keeping. So these are religious questions. And if they have political ramifications, so be it.

COOPER: We have to leave it there. We are going to have fascinating discussions there all throughout this week.

John Allen, Bruce Feller, Father, thank you for being with us. We look forward to more of your words.

Coming up next, what the papal security looks like from high above Manhattan. We'll take you aboard a New York police helicopter, show you some of the technology that can see things you might even miss standing face to face with somebody down on the street.

And later more breaking news. Donald Trump getting a chance to explain what he really thinks about Muslims in America, not defending President Obama from charges he is one. So did he lay the issue to rest? Or did he stoke the controversy? Stay tuned and you'll see for yourself.


[20:18:55] COOPER: Long before Pope Francis took his first step onto the tarmac at Joint Base Andrews a truly massive security operation was in full spring. And obviously not just here in Washington. New Yorkers have been seeing signs of it for days now.

I talked about some of the precautions yesterday with police Commissioner Bratton. I also spent time above the city with James Waters, the chief of counterterrorism for the NYPD.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The NYPD, how big an operation is this?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is an unprecedented operation here in the city.

COOPER (voice-over): When Pope Francis arrives in New York City, he'll be protected not only from the ground but also from the air.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You've got cameras on this helicopter that can actually read somebody's face, you can actually read the license plate.

CHIEF JAMES WATERS, NEW YORK POLICE DEPARTMENT: That's correct. So our aviation unit are, you know, eyes in sky here. They are able to give us an advantage from the altitude, they could look down, they could see it.

COOPER: Chief James Waters is head of counterterrorism operations for the NYPD. He took us on a police chopper to show us Pope Francis' route for the city and the coordinated effort of nearly 50 local, state, and federal agencies that will keep the Pope and the crowds safe.

One stop for the pontiff, St. Patrick's cathedral. How high are we right now?

[20:20:08] WATERS: We are 1,500 feet, sir. We're at 1,500 feet and we are overlooking St. Patrick's cathedral. We're able to see the people on the ground.

COOPER: That's incredible. You can also show infrared on this and also --

WATERS: Right. So the pilots can flip through and there is your infrared.

COOPER: That's all body heat.

WATERS: That's all the body heat signature.

COOPER: The trip is carefully scripted, but this is a Pope who often likes to go off script. Stepping out to mingle with the crowds. Greeting the faithful who come out to see him. And there will be plenty of opportunities for people to see the Pope during his stay in New York.

WATERS: He's going to be in city about 40 hours and he's going to cover probably 50 or 60 miles, you know, along the route.

COOPER: Chief Waters says they're prepared for almost any scenario from unexpected stops to spontaneous protests to the possibility of a terror attack.

WATERS: This aircraft is also equipped with radiological detection equipment. So we can do aerial surveys or radiological materials that may be out there. And we fly background checks around the city on a regular basis. And we fly several days before the event as well as during the event to ensure that there's no dirty bomb out there or moving around.

COOPER: These images are transmitted back to the joint operations center at police headquarters and are carefully monitored throughout the flight.

See, with the helicopter like this, you would also be checking rooftops for any potential snipers.

WATERS: They're our eyes in the sky. And that we're able to check rooftops and we are able to give coordinates to the observation teams that are out there and the incident commander on the ground.

COOPER: Still what worries the officials is the unknown.

One of the things also the NYPD is doing is really prepared for now for several years for active shooter situation. Is that something you're especially concerned about here?

WATERS: So an active shooter or a lone wolf, someone who's not on the radar, is of great concern to us. We don't have any intelligence to inform us that something is about to happen. And some individual just decides one day I'm going to get up and today's the day that I'm going to do it.

COOPER: More than 5,000 New York City police officers will be on hand for the Pope's arrival.

WATERS: So, Anderson, eyes of the world will be on New York City this week and the NYPD and its partners are ready. COOPER: You feel confident you're ready for this?

WATERS: Very confident. We're ready. We're well prepared. We plan, we train, and this week we're going to execute.

COOPER: Any sleepless nights?

WATERS: Often.

COOPER: He may have sleepless nights but the plans are in place and chief waters believes the city is ready.


COOPER: Joining us now, someone who knows high-level security as well as New York, former secret service agent Dan Bongino who also served on the NYPD.

So Dan, first of all, I mean, everyone's been talking about it. The fiat the Pope is being driven around in, not a limousine or SUV. Basically it's a small Italian Hashback. Clearly that's not part of regular secret service fleet. How unusual is that?

DAN BONGINO, FORMER NEW YORK POLICE DEPARTMENT OFFICER: Very unusual. I've actually never seen anything like it. It's very dangerous, Anderson. You know, I admire the Pope's humbleness and he is not wanting to be seen ostentatiously but that's a very dangerous vehicle. God forbid there was a tactical assault, there's no way to negotiate strategically in that type of a vehicle.

COOPER: What's the biggest challenge facing the secret service and other agencies? I mean, is it the fact that this Pope so often wants to get right up close to the crowds, he wants to mingle with people? You've seen videos in the past of people handing him, you know, a pizza, people handing him a drink to take a drink of. That's got it be a nightmare for secret service and the NYPD.

BONGINO: Absolutely. You know, the secret service grades its protectees, Anderson. The very simple is low, medium, and high threat level. I would actually rate the Pope as critical, a level above high.

When you combine now with what you just said, his randomness, his unpredictability, what you have to do -- let me give you a quick example. President Obama got out and waved on the inauguration route in 2008, his initial inauguration actually in 2009 when it happened. We knew that was going to happen. We put all of our bodies, all of our eyes right there because we knew that was the moment. You know, we had beam other places but that was where it was going to happen.

You don't know that with this Pope. You don't know where he's going to get out. So you basically have to secure the whole route like that one moment when President Obama got out and waved. That's a lot of resources being eaten up.

COOPER: And I was talking to the NYPD, they said, look, the known terrorist groups are a big enough challenge. But, again, what Chief Waters said, the lone wolf types tied to aren't on somebody's radar. That's what they worry about the most.

BONGINO: You know, I was listening to the chief and he nailed it. That's the kind of thing when I was a secret service agent that kept me up at night. The thing about a small group tactical assault, Anderson, 20 to 30 men with heavy weapons is you have to sneak the weapons in, there's coordination issues. It's not as easy as it looks in the movies. You say, you know, Olympus has fallen, tight movies where they all attack the White House.

But one person with a .38 special he bought on the street, if you're determined to get into that site, there's a chance you may do that if you're creative enough. And it's that one guy that can do the real damage, that lone wolf that worries me as well.

[20:25:36] COOPER: Well, one of the things that Chief Waters told me that the NYPD is doing with the secret service and everybody else is basically role playing and kind of running through scenarios every conceivable attack that could take place and how they would prepare for that. So, you know, they certainly seem to feel like they're on point. Let's hope everything just goes off peacefully and just an amazing visit which it's already turning out to be.

Dan Bongino, appreciate you being with us.

Just ahead, more breaking news, in a new interview, Donald Trump defending his stance on Muslims by bringing up the world trade center attacks.

Plus, Hillary Clinton finally saying where she stands on the controversial keystone pipeline. Details on that ahead.



COOPER: There's more breaking news tonight in new remarks Donald Trump is digging in defending his decision not to correct a man who made anti-Muslim remarks at a recent rally in New Hampshire. This is the exchange that sparked the original controversy.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have a problem in this country. It's called Muslims. We know our current president is one. You know he's not even an American.

TRUMP: Right. We need this question --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But anyway, we have training camps growing where they want to kill us. That's my question. When can we get rid of them?

TRUMP: We're going to be looking at a lot of different things. And you know, a lot of people are saying that, and a lot of people are saying that bad things are happening out there. We're going to be looking at that and plenty of other things.


COOPER: Donald Trump was criticized by some for not challenging those remarks, unlike John McCain, who during the 2008 campaign, corrected a woman who said President Obama was an Arab. In a just released interview with "60 Minutes," with Scott Pelley, Trump not only stands by his response, he also brings up the World Trade Center attacks while seeming to defend the man's anti-Muslim comment. Take a look.


SCOTT PELLEY, CBS: We were with you in New Hampshire when that man stood up and said we have a problem in this country, and it's Muslims. You let that pass, and I wonder what that tells us about you.

TRUMP: He said much more than that. That was part of the statement. He then went on to say other things.

PELLEY: But the bigotry part.

TRUMP: Look. He said mostly about Obama, that whole question is about -- I don't have to defend President Obama. He's not going to defend me. So whether you agree with the man or don't agree, and there were people in that audience, as you probably noticed, that did agree with him.

PELLEY: It was a testing moment for a man running for president.

TRUMP: I don't think so.

PELLEY: You never know when they're coming.

TRUMP: I don't think so.

PELLEY: Here you have a bigot you could have slapped down.

TRUMP: You don't know that. I mean, he asked a question, you don't know that he was a bigot. But look--

PELLEY: A problem in this country and it's Muslims?

TRUMP: Well, let me ask you this. You said there's a problem in this country and it's Muslims, all right? I love the Muslims. I have many, many friends. People living in this building, Muslims. They're phenomenal people. But like everything else, you have people where there are problems. Now, we can say there are no problems with the Muslims, there's no problems, there's no terrorism, there's no crime, there's no anything, they didn't knock down the World Trade Center. To the best of my knowledge, the people that knocked down the World Trade Center, you know -- they didn't fly back to Sweden.


COOPER: Donald Trump on 60 Minutes. There is more breaking news on the campaign trail. In Iowa today,

Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton finally made her position on the controversial Keystone pipeline public. Here's what she said at a community forum in Des Moines.


CLINTON: I think it is imperative that we look at the Keystone pipeline as what I believe it is, a distraction from the important work we have to do to combat climate change. And, unfortunately, from my perspective, one that interferes with our ability to move forward to deal with all the other issues. Therefore, I oppose it.


COOPER: Former Secretary of State Clinton has been asked repeatedly where she stands on the pipeline. This is first time she actually answered. The project is still under review in the State Department. That process started under her watch and continues under Secretary of State John Kerry. Our senior Washington correspondent, Jeff Zeleny, joins me now. How did she go from vehemently not commenting on the pipeline to suddenly commenting on the pipeline?

JEFF ZELENY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A tough summer, Anderson. I think that explains her shift better than anything else here. She's been hammered for months about not being open, not being honest or trustworthy, in part because she declined to take a stand on some of these issues like Keystone. Of course she knows this so very well, she was part of the process as secretary of state. So a lot of progressives and liberals wondered, what was she waiting for? Of course Bernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley had a field day over all of this. At the end of July, a voter in New Hampshire asked her about Keystone, and she said if it's undecided when I become president, I'll answer your question then. I remember being in that room at the town hall meeting, and her answer fell flat. It fueled the notion she wasn't being forthcoming. This is all part of her fall rebuilding effort of her campaign, trying to answer questions and trying to look more open and transparent.

COOPER: But in terms -- it also makes it, I mean, to I guess her critics or to other people, as just a political calculation, that she wanted to kind of take a poll to see before answering that question, because as you said, she was involved in it from early days, and the pipeline is something that liberal Democrats that she's fighting Bernie Sanders for, is pretty much vehemently opposed to, correct? So if she's trying to appeal to politics, then how big of a factor was that in her answer?

ZELENY: I mean, I think it was almost entirely this. Nothing has changed. The facts about Keystone have not changed. There's no question the left wing of the Democratic Party is so strongly opposed to Keystone, one of the touchstone issues here. Quite simply, she was feeling the heat from all the liberal skeptics and critics.

[20:35:00] So, yes, it's politically expedient, no doubt about it. But also politically smart, to make this announcement as a Democratic presidential candidate. She had few other options here. So short term it looks expedient, long term probably a smart decision on her part, Anderson.

COOPER: All right. Jeff Zeleny, appreciate it. Thanks very much.

Just ahead in the latest CNN poll, Carly Fiorina surges to second place behind Donald Trump by just nine points. Can she actually build on that momentum? And will her claims about her track record as a CEO hold up under new scrutiny? We'll check her record ahead.


COOPER: Carly Fiorina is trying to keep the momentum going on the campaign trail, widely seen as the winner of last week's debate. She surged to No. 2 in the polls, moving past Ben Carson. Last night she showed a lighter side of herself on Jimmy Fallon's show, where she gamely sang a song she made up about her dog. She also weighed in on several issues, telling Fallon Ben Carson's comments about Muslims are wrong. She said she believes a Muslim shouldn't be prevented from serving as president. Today Ms. Fiorina campaigned in South Carolina. CNN's Sunlen Serfaty joins me now from Myrtle Beach. Clearly the Fiorina campaign is trying to capitalize on momentum from last week's CNN debate.


SUNLEN SERFATY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's absolutely right, Anderson. It's clear from the feeling here within the campaign that they understand that they feel this is a moment, but there's also the understanding that they need this moment to stick. So they have to hang on to that.

We heard from Carly Fiorina today, who really admitted saying she's keenly aware, is how she put it, that it's just not about doing well in debates, that she has to start offering more than just doing well right up there on the debate stage.

So part of that is hitting the campaign trail. The campaign has her on a three-day swing through South Carolina. Today was day one. And they're eager to really put her in settings that show off some substance. So today, she spoke for over an hour exclusively on national security issues at the Citadel. The campaign telling me they're also eager to put her in the settings like Jimmy Fallon last night, where she can show off her substance -- her style, and a little flare and her personality. So expect to see her in those sort of settings upcoming, too. Anderson?

COOPER: And I know she was asked about Donald Trump's recent attacks on her. What did she say?

SERFATY: Well, this is really interesting, because this continues to be the question that she gets from reporters out on the campaign trail. And she seems that she's very aware that Donald Trump has been ramping up his attacks. At the same time, she is really rising in the polls. And today she was asked about that, and she shrugged off the specific criticisms coming from Trump, but she did say that she believes this is a sign that she's getting under Donald Trump's skin.


CARLY FIORINA, GOP PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It might seem that Donald Trump's getting a little nervous. Maybe I'm getting under his skin a little bit. I am happy to run on the facts of my record. And Mr. Trump is going to have to run on the facts of his record. As I said during the debate, all of us will be revealed over time and under pressure. I think that's fair to the voters to see.


SERFATY: And her super PAC is really pushing forward with this as well. They sent an e-mail out today to supporters, saying we get the point, Mr. Trump, you're worried, you should be. Anderson?

COOPER: Interesting. Sunlen, thanks.

Carly Fiorina and Donald Trump spend a lot of time touting their business credentials and slamming each others's track records in business. Their claims are coming under growing scrutiny. In an opinion piece today entitled "Trump and Fiorina's Snake Oil Sales," New York Times columnist Joe Nocera writes "even putting aside their policy positions, their narcissism, their poor records as leaders, and their lack of scruples and spinning failures as triumphs, all suggest Fiorina and Trump would make terrible presidents." Joe Nocera joins me now.

Joe, first of all, Carly Fiorina defended her past record today. You say that in particular, talk about her record at H.P. Because, I mean, in your column today, you basically say it was really dismal from her first big decision.

JOE NOCERA, NEW YORK TIMES: No, it was. You know, the most astounding thing is that she bought a giant computer company, Compaq Computer, merged it into H.P. And yet by the time she was fired, profits were actually down. It's almost inconceivable. It's just -- it's a record of kind of failures, of botched attempts to change strategy. And her leadership was very -- excuse me, her leadership was very alienating to an employee base where people believed in sharing credit, and there wasn't a lot of ego, and she brought in a lot of ego, and people really resented it.

COOPER: She came in to H.P., though, with, I mean, this incredible story of having started off as a secretary and risen to the ranks of running another company, Lucent.

NOCERA: Sure, that's very true. She didn't run Lucent but she ran marketing and sales for Lucent for a long time. But there's no question that her rise is a good part of her story. That she started basically from nothing, and became, you know, a $100 million CEO.

The problem is the six years, the five and a half years that she was actually in charge of something, she didn't do it very well. And if you're thinking about her as a potential president, you have to wonder whether, you know, she's learned anything or whether her leadership skills will be different this time around.

COOPER: You also write about Donald Trump's record. You say he's a business legend, but only in his own mind. Explain why you say that.

NOCERA: Well, his company, according to his own CFO, only generates $600 million in revenue. I mean, it's really pretty minuscule. And most of the buildings in New York and elsewhere that have the Trump name on it, he doesn't own them. Some cases he lost them when times were tough. In other cases, he was simply -- they put his name on it as a marketing gimmick, and that's the way he makes a lot of his money now. So he goes around saying he's the biggest real estate developer in New York, he's the most important businessman, this and that. It's just not true. It's absolutely not true.


COOPER: And you say he got a lot of his start because of his dad.

NOCERA: Well, that's true. I mean, his father was a developer, and his father was quite wealthy, and there are key moments in the Trump story where his father steps in and helps him out. Lends him money when he's about to lose something. The most vivid example of this came when one of his casinos was in trouble, and his father went and bought $3.5 million worth of poker chips, which he just held on to. He didn't use them. He didn't gamble with them. He just held on to them, thus infusing $3.5 million in cash into the casino so Trump could make a loan payment.

You know, Anderson, I did want to note about Trump, he has a comeback story. He's a guy who could say I've been through hard times and I've gotten through it. It would be appealing. But he can't bring himself to do that, because he has to be perceived as a winner at all moments.

COOPER: Joe Nocera, it was an interesting article today. Thank you very much.

NOCERA: Thank you.

COOPER: Coming up, more on Pope Francis' visit here to the United States.



COOPER: Pope Francis celebrates mass here tomorrow. In just a few minutes, Chris Cuomo traces his extraordinary journey to the Vatican in a CNN SPECIAL REPORT - "The People's Pope." You'll hear from some of the people who know him best. Here's a quick preview.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jorge Bergoglio is a lower middle class kid in a lower middle class area of Buenos Aires of mostly Italian immigrants. That's where he grew up.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was a typical childhood. He would go and play with friends in the street. He would play football.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was a pretty ordinary kid. He was a lanky teenager. His childhood friends remember him really as always having his head in a book.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was special, but also normal, because he would go also then being a teenager, he would go and dance tango, (inaudible), he would participate in parties.

OSCAR CRESPO, FRIEND (through translator): I've known this man since I was 13 years old. We've known each other for 65 years through every stage of our lives.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And people were very struck by his concern for others. I think that was there from the very, very beginning.

Just before his 17th birthday, when he had this experience in the confessional, something he says made him go in, and he said confession to a priest he didn't know, and he always said what went on in that confession left him convinced that he would be a priest.

CRESPO (through translator): He said, I'm going to tell you something that I haven't told anyone else. I've decided to dedicate myself to the priesthood.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And I think it was through that experience, we see the beginnings of the very tender and loving man that I think he subsequently became as a bishop and now as pope.


COOPER: With me now is Father Thomas Rosica of the Holy See Press Office. He's CEO of Salt and Light Catholic Media Foundation. Father, thank you very much for being with us.


COOPER: The importance of this pope's visit to the United States, what is it for you? This is obviously the first time he came to the United States. He's 78 years old, and he came through Cuba first.

ROSICA: Let's put it this way, when any pope comes to America, it's a celebration. Beginning with Paul VI and John Paul II and Benedict. With Francis, there's a value added, if you will. There's something very special because of the degree of connection with people right from the beginning of his pontificate. You and I were together that famous night in March 2013. And there was that connection, there was a bonding with humanity. There was a simplicity of language.

They call him the people's pope. Every pope is a person's pope. It's a people's pope. This one is unique and special, and today I have to admit, watching the scene -- I was at the airport -- watching the scene of him coming down the stairs, 78 years old, this is his first visit to America. He not only -- it's not a normal entry into the country. Usually they come quietly. He came with this royal welcome. The president and the vice president.

What does it mean for America? He's coming to bring joy. From the beginning of the pontificate, he's announced joy. He's written about joy. The gospel of joy. The backdrop of all of this is a world plunged in sadness and darkness and violence and persecution. Things are not very good right now in the world. There's great cause for sadness. And he's coming to remind us that Jesus brings joy. And Christians have to be joyful people against this backdrop of all the stuff around us.

COOPER: It's one of the things that I think appeals to so many people about him is even if he hasn't changed any doctrine that some people may disagree with, he -- the emphasis he is putting on is that the church as a mission to others, as a church, the church reaching out to the poor, the church being out in the streets, after he's going to be speaking to a joint meeting of Congress, he's not lunching on Capitol Hill with the muckety-mucks. He's going to a soup kitchen with Catholic charities. That says really everything about this pope.

ROSICA: Vintage Bergoglio I call it. He doesn't need all that stuff. Doesn't need all the thrills. Look at Jesus in the New Testament. He was comfortable with all kinds of people. I often say to myself that the biblical foundation for the priesthood is never turning down an invitation to a meal with anybody, not just a particular race of people. This is what he did as archbishop and cardinal. This is what he's doing as pope. There's nothing fancy about that. This is no frills in the best sense.

COOPER: For him it's Matthew 25, it's -- focusing on what Jesus said about in the final days, you're going to be asked about, did you reach out to the poor, did you visit the sick?

ROSICA: The hungry. The homeless, yes, and the prisons. Look at all the people, every place he's gone around the world in these visits. There's almost some signature moments. The moment of a prison, the moment of poor people. Those scenes visiting the hovels in South America. In Brazil, I was with him in Brazil. It was extraordinary. He's not doing this for photo ops. He's doing this because this has been part of his DNA all along. And he's also doing it to offer us an example.


What he's doing is saying this is how we are church and this is how we are church at our best. So it wakes us all up and it's also very jarring.

COOPER: We'll be spending a lot of time with you in the days ahead. We look forward to it, Father. Thank you very much. Appreciate it. Father Thomas Rosica. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) COOPER: We're on campus in Washington, D.C., at Catholic University. Hope you stay with us here for days of extensive coverage of Pope Francis' historic visit to the United States. The pope will be appearing here tomorrow celebrating mass. We'll see you again 11:00 p.m. Eastern tonight for another edition of "360." From here on the campus of Catholic University of America in Washington.

The CNN SPECIAL REPORT "The People's Pope" starts now.