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Hillary Clinton Clinches Democratic Nomination; Rape Victim Pens Letter to Attacker; Aboard U.S. Warship in ISIS Fight; U.S. Cyclist Skips Olympics over Zika; On Rio's Beaches with Ordering App. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired June 7, 2016 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ROBYN CURNOW, CNN HOST (voice-over): Ahead at the INTERNATIONAL DESK: Hillary Clinton, will she be the first American woman to be a major party's
A rape victim's words stir an outpouring of emotion on social media.
And I'll talk to an athlete who is skipping the games because of Zika.
CURNOW: Hi, there. Welcome. I'm Robyn Curnow at the CNN Center.
Hillary is to make history, as she, the first U.S. presidential candidate. She might have enough candidates, enough delegates to clinch the Democratic
nomination, making her the first woman in U.S. history to lead a major party's ticket.
On the Republican side, the party is facing the reality of having Donald Trump as its nominee. Republicans are trying to balance support for the
Trump while dealing with a backlash he's creating.
While the two parties have their presumptive nominees, perhaps tied up, primary season is not over. Several key states are holding primaries right
now on the last Super Tuesday of the election.
Well, let's begin our coverage with Clinton. She may have -- be about to clinch her party's nomination but she's not celebrating just yet. Chris
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: According to the news, we are on the brink of a historic, historic,
CHRIS FRATES, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Overnight Hillary Clinton clinched enough delegates to become the presumptive Democratic presidential
CLINTON: We're going to fight hard for every single vote, especially right here in California.
FRATES (voice-over): But she is not claiming that historic milestone just yet. Instead, focusing on getting her supporters to the polls in the final
six states holding contests today.
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I), VT., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: In case you haven't noticed, there are a lot of people here tonight. Thank you.
FRATES (voice-over): Clinton's rival, Bernie Sanders, is insisting that the primary contests aren't over yet, his campaign releasing a statement
arguing that super delegates can change their minds before the July convention.
Saying, quote, "It is wrong to count the votes of super delegates before they actually vote at the convention this summer."
The senator not acknowledging Clinton's triumph at a rally in San Francisco but softening his rhetoric when asked about the possibility of endorsing
SANDERS: Let's assess where we are after tomorrow before we make statements based on speculation.
FRATES (voice-over): Clinton is hoping to bring Democrats together quickly after this long and bruising primary season.
CLINTON: I'm going to do everything I can to unify the Democratic Party, an I certainly am going to be reaching out to Senator Sanders and hope he
will join me in that because we have got to be unified going into the convention and coming out of the convention.
FRATES (voice-over): Clinton is poised to get a major boost from President Obama, who sources say could endorse her as early as tomorrow and is
itching to take on Donald Trump.
CURNOW: Chris Frates reporting there.
Now to the Republicans and Donald Trump's brash and unconventional campaign, which has brought him to the brink of the Republican nomination.
Now he's facing a backlash of his own from his own party over criticism of a judge. Jim Acosta has that story.
DONALD TRUMP, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't care if the judge is Mexican or not. I'm going to do great with the Mexican people.
JIM ACOSTA, CNN SR. WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Donald Trump is refusing to back down or apologize for his attacks.
TRUMP: I don't care about Mexican. But we are treated very unfairly.
ACOSTA (voice-over): Calling for Judge Gonzalo Curiel to recuse himself from a civil fraud case involving Trump University.
TRUMP: When you have thousands of students saying that the place was great, it was a great school and they loved it, this should be dismissed on
ACOSTA (voice-over): His attacks on the judge.
TRUMP: I'm building a wall. He's a Mexican.
ACOSTA (voice-over): -- are causing an uproar and unifying the GOP against his controversial rhetoric.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLA.: And that judge is an American and Donald shouldn't keep saying that. It's wrong that he keeps saying it. And it's
inappropriate, wrong, offensive. I hope he'll stop.
When I ran for president, I told everyone that this is what would happen.
ACOSTA (voice-over): On a conference call with staffers and surrogates, sources say Trump told them to keep up criticism of Judge Curiel.
JASON OSBORNE, DONALD TRUMP SUPPORTER: When Donald Trump today on the call explained his side of the story, it made complete sense. He said here are
the facts of the case and we need to continue to attack the bias that is going on out there.
ACOSTA (voice-over): Even Trump's most prominent supporters are blasting his attacks, including Newt Gingrich that's rumored to be on his V.P. short
NEWT GINGRICH, FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER: This is one of the worst mistakes Trump has made.
ACOSTA (voice-over): But the former House Speaker dialed back his criticism last night.
GINGRICH: I thought he did a very good job of narrowing down his complaint, which I think, by the way, if you look at the record, is totally
We're both big boys. He is doing a great job overall. I deeply disagreed on one item.
ACOSTA (voice-over): Former rival, Ben Carson, also walked back his criticism --
ACOSTA (voice-over): -- blaming the media, as Trump frequently does.
DR. BEN CARSON (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: People assume on the basis of something that is said what a person believes when they could just
CURNOW: That was Jim Acosta reporting there.
Republican leaders are forging ahead with their party agenda even as Trump's comments dominate the headlines. House Speaker Paul Ryan is
announcing a series of policy rollouts today, they include fighting poverty and education reforms.
Ryan and other Republican leaders want to present a positive image of the party and lay out an agenda for the next president.
Well, Phil Mattingly joins me now from CNN New York.
And the question is, can Ryan and the Republicans really seize control of the agenda?
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is just unlikely, Robyn. And I think if you talk to House Republican members if they're being candid, they
will acknowledge that the person at the top of the ticket defines where the party goes in the policy side of things.
And I think this is why you initially saw Paul Ryan's reluctance to endorse Donald Trump. Paul Ryan has been working on what he is rolling out today,
there's a six-plank agenda that House Republicans will be rolling out over next couple of weeks, conservative, principled issues that the party has
been working on behind closed doors on the policy side of things for years.
Donald Trump is on the polar opposite end on a lot of those issues and that's why you saw Paul Ryan wait to endorse Donald Trump. He eventually
came around. But the reality is, if Donald Trump doesn't feel like talking about the House Republican issues, if he doesn't feel like talking about
these agenda items, these agenda items essentially wither on the vine.
Now one thing Paul Ryan's advisers had told me, these are the types of issues that they think a President Trump would sign into law. They're
going to keep working as a party of ideas not just an opposition party.
But the reality is as we have seen every single day, Robyn, what Donald Trump says and does dominates the news, dominates the cycle and really
dominates the Republican Party.
CURNOW: Yes. And it's just one tweet that can change the whole conversation, can't it?
Well, let's just talk about these toxic comments Trump made about the judge and how Democrats are using this. They're actually demanding that
Republicans either condemn his comments or rescind their endorsements.
I mean, that's politicking.
But still, is that something some Republicans might be thinking?
MATTINGLY: I think, Robyn, here's an interesting way of looking at it. I've talked to a couple of donors, now and obviously these aren't the
politicians themselves but these are the types of people that have worked and donated in Republican politics for years, decades even, who have said
they were either right about to give money to the Republican National Committee Donald Trump co-campaign account and are now not going to or
already have and don't feel like giving any more money.
Now the difference is politicians who have already been out and decided to support Donald Trump, for them to go back on that word is a very, very
difficult position to be in. You don't want to be a politician accused of flip-flopping. The main issue is here that Democrats aren't going to stop
And what you have seen with these judge attacks right now, the Judge Curiel is from Indiana. Robyn, there's a contested Indiana Senate race. The
Democrats are now hammering the Republican nominee in that state about. There's -- they're doing the same thing in Nevada, the same thing in
Florida, the same thing in Ohio.
And what you are seeing right now is all of the candidates that are up for re-election in the Senate, there's 24 seats the Republicans have to defend
in a very slim majority for which they have to hold onto are all being attacked on this while I don't expect and I haven't heard that anybody's
going to rescind their endorsement up to this point, the reality is that they're going to be faced with these types of questions, these types of
attacks every single day until November.
CURNOW: Until November. Well, let's talk about what's happening with Hillary Clinton. Our editorial note this morning leads with, "Make sure
your daughters watch TV today," because this is -- we are on the cusp of a historic win.
That said, Hillary Clinton very clearly saying she is not popping the champagne yet.
MATTINGLY: Well, I think there's a couple things you have to look at.
One, there's six contests today. And they want to win those contests or they at least want to win California and they should win New Jersey.
California's a very close race right now. The last thing the Clinton campaign wants is for people to call the race, call Hillary Clinton the
presumptive nominee and then Clinton supporters decide not to go out and vote today in California.
If Bernie Sanders wins California, and if you look at the polling over the last couple of weeks, it's absolutely a possibility, all that does is give
him a reason to keep fighting. That's the exact opposite of what the Clinton campaign wants.
Frankly, it's the exact opposite of what a lot of Democrats want right now. What they would like is for Clinton to get a great turnout in California
today, to win California, to win New Jersey, to make tonight crystal clear, not only is she by numbers the presumptive nominee but also by recognition
of the entire party establishment, the presumptive nominee.
One wild card here, Robyn, I think you have to keep an eye on over next 24, 48 hours, President Barack Obama, he's made clear through his aides that
he's likely to endorse Clinton as early as tomorrow.
The could be a game-changer if Bernie Sanders decides to fight on. But if Hillary Clinton wins California, that really takes any rationale for Bernie
Sanders to continue his campaign from going and that's why you have seen the Clinton campaign be a little tepid in their response to the official
MATTINGLY: -- that she is the presumptive nominee, at least according to the Associated Press.
CURNOW: Yes. And according to sources speaking to some of our CNN reporters from the White House is that President Obama is quite eager to
jump into this race.
Thanks so much, Phil Mattingly. Appreciate it.
And you can watch the results roll in on this final Super Tuesday of primary voting in the U.S. All-night coverage on CNN starts at midnight in
London, 1:00 am in Central Europe.
Calls for a California judge to be removed from the bench are growing. People are furious that a sentence he issued last week to a man convicted
of sexually assaulting an unconscious woman on a college campus. Our Isha Sesay has the story.
ISHA SESAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A terrible crime compounded by its aftermath: outrage over a sentence some feel is too lenient. The case
highlighting questions of liability, punishment and American society's attitude towards sexual assault.
On Thursday, former Stanford student Brock Turner was sentenced to six months imprisonment after being convicted on three felony assault charges.
The prosecution had sought a sentence of six years.
The woman was unconscious at the time she was assaulted on the university campus. The incident occurred after a party during which both had consumed
excessive amounts of alcohol.
Turner will also be placed on the sex offender's register for life. His victim spoke out in a statement read at sentencing. Earlier, CNN's
Ashleigh Banfield read part of the statement on the "LEGAL VIEW."
ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN HOST: "One day, I was at work, scrolling through the news on my phone and I came across an article. In it, I read and
learned for the first time about how I was found unconscious, with my hair disheveled, long necklace wrapped around my neck, bra pulled out of my
dress, dress pulled off over my shoulders and pulled up above my waist, that I was butt naked all the way down to my boots, legs spread apart and
had been penetrated by a foreign object by someone I did not recognize.
"I learned what happened to me the same time everyone else in the world learned what happened to me."
SESAY (voice-over): Brock Turner's father has further fueled anger surrounding the case, penning a letter to the judge, in which he states,
"His life will never be the one he dreamed about and worked so hard to achieve.
"That is a steep price to pay for 20 minutes of action out of his 20-plus years of life."
Social media reaction has been vitriolic, with many questioning why Turner's father would depict his son as a victim of the incident and the
prosecution has also condemned the apparent leniency of the sentence.
District Attorney Jeff Rosen said, "The sentence does not factor in the true seriousness of the sexual assault or the victim's ongoing trauma.
Campus rape is no different than off-campus rape. Rape is rape."
While Brock Turner denies he committed rape, his victim only became aware of the assault when she woke up in the hospital and was asked to sign
papers marked "rape victim" before being allowed to shower. Stanford University has expressed regret over what happened. But in a statement,
claimed it had done everything in its power to ensure justice in the case.
"This was a horrible incident and we understand the anger and deep emotion it has generated. There is still much work to be done, not just here, but
everywhere to create a culture that does not tolerate sexual violence in any form and a judicial system that deals appropriately with sexual assault
cases." Isha Sesay, CNN, Los Angeles.
CURNOW: Well, you saw Ashleigh Banfield in Isha's piece there. She dedicated most of her show yesterday on CNN yesterday to read the rape
victim's own words.
Well, Ashleigh joins us now from New York.
Hey, there, Ashleigh. This was a very powerful statement, tough words to hear, tough words to read.
BANFIELD: Yes. I think tough, tough words to write. And the reason that we read them was because I've never read a victim's impact statement like
And, Robyn, I have been covering trials for 30 years. And this one was so profound, so insightful and had the potential of impacting so many people
that I thought, we have a platform to do this, we have a platform to get this out from just the courtroom.
It's already happening on online. It's critical journalism to let people know what consent is and is not from the viewpoint of the people who suffer
the most -- and when I say suffer the most, the victims suffer the most.
I know people think Brock Turner's suffering because he's lost his college swimming scholarships and accolades --
BANFIELD: -- and is going to a county jail for six months, probably three with good behavior. But make no mistake: this victim's impact statement
tells you who the real victims in these cases are and how they can be stopped from becoming victims.
CURNOW: So you gave voice, she gave voice to herself in terms of telling her story in that.
The outrage online, the support towards what you did yesterday on CNN, why do you think it's hit a chord like it has?
BANFIELD: I can only say because of her words. When we made this decision to go forward and put as much of this letter on the air as physically
possible, I mean, to read it silently, Robyn, I'm sure you did it, it takes 40 to 50 minutes.
To read it out loud would have exceeded the hour and so we had to excise it as best we could without changing her context.
But it struck a chord because of what she wrote, not because of me or because it was on CNN. It struck a chord because her story is gripping and
she has articulated it since best by saying, I don't want people to know who I am because I'm every woman.
The fact that I'm anonymous puts your daughter's face on that letter, puts your sister's face on that letter, puts anyone you know, it puts their face
on this letter.
And so her words were what were gripping. There was no production. There was no video. There were no sound bites. There was no analysis until long
after we'd finished reading her statement and it was gripping because she is gripping. She's articulated this issue, this crisis in this country and
other countries that no documentarian, no journalist, no lawyer, no activist nor no other victim, up until this point, no other survivor has
been able to do in the manner in which she was able to do and that's why she deserves and still deserves a bigger platform.
CURNOW: Why do you think the judge, those words didn't impact the judge as much as many people would have liked them to?
And with that in mind, there's been a petition.
What kind of legal impact would there be because of the outrage on the outcome of this case?
BANFIELD: The petition may make people feel better or feel engaged in a process, because that, too, is showing dissatisfaction within the larger
But when it comes to recalling a judge, who, by the way, Robyn, is actually up for re-election today but he's unopposed; therefore, he won't appear on
a ballot but he will appear on a ballot in the general election in November.
But for a recall to actually happen, it doesn't come from change.org. Change.org will get the message out very broadly but it's his own
constituents who have to do that, to the tune of about 80,000 signatures and, prior to that, there's an option for them to gather 600 signatures to
start that ball rolling.
But, ultimately, no number of change.org signatures in the world or in California or in, you know, that particular community can do it unless his
constituents do it for themselves.
And that may or may not happen. Just depends on how far-reaching this statement and this issue becomes. And thank God for this woman's bravery
and brilliance for writing this statement.
CURNOW: Ashleigh Banfield, thank you.
BANFIELD: Thank you, Robyn.
CURNOW: You're watching CNN.
Coming up, these jets are heading for Syria to bomb ISIS targets. We'll go to our correspondent at the front of America's around-the-clock bombing
And Zika virus is a big concern for many heading to Brazil for the Olympics. It's enough for one athlete to sit out the games rather than put
his family at risk these days. We'll talk to him after the break.
CURNOW: A car bomb blasted through a busy market in Iraqi city earlier killing at least five people. Iraqi officials say it wounded 11 people the
a city of Kabala. It's a largely Shiite city and it's home to a holy shrine. No group has claimed responsibility for the blast.
And earlier in Turkey, a car bomb there ripped through the historic center of Istanbul. It happened in the middle of morning rush hour; 11 people are
dead. The attacker appears to have targeted a police bus. Seven of the dead were officers. That's according to Istanbul's governor. He said the
blast also wounded 36 people.
Turkish state media say police have detained four people in connection with the attack. No group has taken responsibility.
And the U.K. is officially warning football fans the Euro 2016 championship is at high risk of a terror attack. British officials have issued an
advisory on travel to France.
Well, our Jim Bittermann is in Paris, near the heart of the tournament.
And, hi, there, Jim.
Is this a surprise?
There have been concerns about this tournament. And of course, the state of security in Paris since the terror attacks last year.
JIM BITTERMANN, CNN SR. INTL. CORRESPONDENT: Well, in fact, Robyn, I think what's happened here is, as this tournament's gotten closer, officials are
getting more and more nervous. And we have seen it in a number of different ways what you just mentioned was one of them.
We saw it from the warning from the State Department. We saw it from the practice drills that have taken on, the mock exercises, a big one which is
going to take place tonight and sort of last minute and there have been more than 70 of these mock exercises to test every sort of thing as far as
the first responders, the police and everyone else are concerned.
And so, I think that the officials are getting increasingly nervous as the day comes closer because they're really worried about being able to secure
all of the sites that they have to secure; they've got 90,000 police and security agents mobilized, across the country. But when you spread those
out amongst 10 stadiums, 10 fan zones, any number of practice grounds and hotels where the teams are staying and that sort of thing, it may not be
that many people at all.
In fact, they just added in Paris yesterday, they added 3,000 more security agents for the Stade de France, where the first match is going to take
place. And said that there's going to be another ring of security around the Stade de France so a lot of nervousness here, I'd say -- Robyn.
CURNOW: Jim Bittermann in Paris, thanks for that update.
CURNOW: Syria now, where a coalition is fighting to drive out ISIS. And the U.S. is backing the efforts in the north by air. Our Fred Pleitgen has
just spent time with the U.S. military at the heart of that fight. He joins me now from the Greek island of Crete.
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Robyn. Yes. We were aboard the U.S.S. Harry Truman and we talked yesterday about
the fact that aircraft carrier had been brought from the Persian Gulf to right here to the Mediterranean Sea for quicker access to the battlefields
in Syria, especially in Northern Syria around the Manbij area.
And of course, the Raqqah area, as well. Well, the U.S.S. Harry Truman has now become the U.S. ship that's dropped more munitions on ISIS targets than
any other ship in the American fleet.
Now of course that's something that requires a huge effort by the crew, both during the day and at night. Here's what we saw.
PLEITGEN (voice-over): Even in the night, the U.S.S. Harry Truman's operations never stop. A relentless around-the-clock bombing campaign
against ISIS now in a critical stage.
Many missions means lots of bombs need to be ready all the time. Aviation ordnance man Ronald Kennedy from Baltimore, Maryland, shows me some of the
most common munitions, like this 500-pound guided bomb.
RONALD KENNEDY, AVIATION ORDNANCE: This is a UB-38 right here. Most common. We drop these on the regular. We also hold some air-to-air
missiles but air-to-ground right now and bombs are the favorite.
PLEITGEN (voice-over): Ordnance men and women constantly haul bombs and missiles into elevators headed to the carrier's flight deck, where they're
mounted to the jets.
KENNEDY: First we get the call then we have to build the bomb and stuff like that. And first (INAUDIBLE) bomb body --
KENNEDY: -- then we have to actually assemble the tailpiece, then we actually, you know, configure the nosepiece of the bomb, put it all
together, assemble it.
PLEITGEN (voice-over): This carrier has targeted ISIS more than any other ship in America's fleet, first from the Persian Gulf and now closer to
Syria in the Mediterranean.
The crew of the U.S.S. Harry Truman has dropped more than 1.5 million pounds of ammunition on ISIS targets over the past couple of months. And
now that the ship is here in the Mediterranean, the bombing runs are continuing at a high pace.
That's helped push ISIS back both in Iraq and in Syria where allied forces seem close to liberating several of the group's strongholds.
But the fast pace of operations also means working overtime for maintenance and logistics crews, repairing aircraft and moving them in and out of the
Now in the seventh month of the Truman's deployment, commanders say they try to make clear to all those on board that they're making a difference as
ISIS continues to lose ground.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We try to explain so that each sailor knows, as they get their different job, they know that, OK, I think the initial numbers
were 25 percent and now we're up to ISIS losing 45 percent of the ground that they had in Iraq. So those numbers are tangible to them.
PLEITGEN (voice-over): The Truman's crew will remain here for several more weeks, continuing their intense aerial campaign against ISIS, no matter
what time of day.
PLEITGEN: So as we can see, Robyn, it's a very complex logistical operation behind a bombing campaign that is as intense as the one that
America's conducting right now over Iraq and Syria. Also, one that actually works very efficiently from what we could see there on board.
Of course, the U.S. bombing campaign right now very much instrumental, also, to the gains that the Iraqi security forces are making in Fallujah as
they try to retake that key ISIS stronghold back from the extremists -- Robyn.
CURNOW: Fred Pleitgen there in Greece, thanks so much. Great reporting there.
You're watching CNN.
In Muhammad Ali's life, nothing was ordinary and neither is his funeral, down to his pallbearers. A family spokesman says actor Will Smith will be
among the eight relatives and friends carrying the coffin.
Smith, if you remember, played Muhammad Ali in a film and stayed close with him. Boxer Lennox Lewis will also help out. He's a heavyweight champion
like Ali and he reportedly said Muhammad Ali was like a father. The funeral is planned for Friday in Louisville, Kentucky.
Still ahead, fear of the Zika virus has prompted at least one athlete to sit out this year's Olympic Games. We'll talk to him about the quest for
Olympic gold versus staying safe.
CURNOW: Welcome to the INTERNATIONAL DESK. Thanks for joining me. I'm Robyn Curnow. Here's a check of the headlines.
CURNOW: And concern about the Zika virus is casting a shadow over this summer's Olympic Games in Rio. In the next hour, the organizing committee
is scheduled to hold a news conference on the effect the virus is having on the games. Brazil's new sports minister says he's convinced the games will
go ahead as planned, starting on August the 4th.
He adds the number of Zika cases will be, in his words, "close to zero."
Well, concern about Zika has prompted at least one athlete to pull out of the games. U.S. cyclist Tejay van Garderen has withdrawn from
consideration because he's concerned and worried, he said, that he might pose some sort of danger to his wife, who is pregnant. Tejay joins us now
via Skype from France.
Why have you made this decision?
How hard was it?
TEJAY VAN GARDEREN, OLYMPIC CYCLIST: Yes. It was certainly a difficult decision. It was something that, you know, we weren't thinking about when
we were trying to get pregnant. I honestly hadn't even heard of Zika virus then and it seemed like as soon as we found out that we were pregnant, all
I saw were articles about Zika virus and Rio and I was like, oh, man. This locos pretty scary.
And the more I read about it, the more just uncertain and uneasy I became. And I just thought, you know what?
This just isn't worth the risk.
CURNOW: This is a very personal decision.
Do you think this should be more widespread?
What are the conversations you have had with your teammates?
VAN GARDEREN: You know, this -- like I'm -- honestly, if my wife wasn't pregnant right now, I would be going to Rio.
I mean, my biggest concern is for the baby on the way. And so I would never tell any athlete who's worked their butt off for four years not to go
to the games. And I'm not -- I'm not as extreme as some of the other views are about changing venues or, you know, boycotting Rio because of Zika.
CURNOW: Do you think it should be postponed?
Some doctors have said so.
VAN GARDEREN: I mean, the thing is, like, no. I mean, to be honest, like I said, if my wife weren't pregnant, I would buy some bug spray and book my
ticket to Rio.
But I mean, being pregnant, that's -- that's kind of a game-changer. So yes, no. I would never tell any athlete not to go and I would -- I hope
that the Rio Olympics is a huge success. I'm just sad that I won't be able to attend.
CURNOW: We're just seeing an image with you with your eldest child; the second one is on the way. Many woman athletes will be also facing perhaps
some agonizing decisions.
You, though, have been the most public, perhaps the first coming out, saying you're not going because of Zika. So you're becoming kind of a
figurehead for this.
VAN GARDEREN: Yes. To be honest, I didn't expect the reaction that I got. I was telling people in USA cycling, look, I don't want to go. Here's why.
I'm really sorry.
And then, I did an interview with just a cycling news website and they were asking me just normal questions about the Tour de France coming up.
All just the run-of-the-mill questions and then, you know, the question came up, like, what do you think of the Rio Olympics?
I said, well, OK. Might as well pull the Band-aid off --
VAN GARDEREN: -- and just tell them, yes, I'm not going. I didn't think it was going to be anything bigger than news on a cycling website.
But yes, now you're talking to me and it seemed like the whole world now wanted to know my opinion on Zika. And I wasn't expecting that. I wasn't
trying to be a martyr or anything. I wasn't trying to make a big stance. It was really just a personal decision, like if anything were to happen to
the baby in my wife's belly, I couldn't live with myself.
CURNOW: Do you think there's been enough information for athletes, for even fans?
Or do you think there's been conflicting, confusing advice here?
VAN GARDEREN: Well, the more I read about it, the more confused I got. That's for sure. It seemed like it's just such a new virus and there's so
much unknown about it that, you know, there was just no degree of certainty anyone could give me.
I would read one article saying, like, oh, the chances are zero. And I would read another article saying it's an epidemic. And I'd read another
article saying the chances of passing it are zero and then I read another article saying, like, oh, maybe it could be spread through certain saliva.
And so it just, with so much uncertainty out there, I was just like, OK. This -- I just can't -- I can't go there.
CURNOW: Tejay, thank you so much for joining us, giving us your perspective. Big decision.
VAN GARDEREN: Thank you.
CURNOW: Another face you won't see at the Rio Olympics, U.S. basketball star Steph Curry. The Golden State Warriors player announced he won't
compete for Team USA in the games. In a statement, Curry listed several reasons, including recent ankle and knee injuries. He did not list
concerns about the Zika virus.
Curry adds he wants to rest up and get his body ready for the next basketball season.
And coming up, we'll get back to Brazil, where a new tool for tourists is making a splash. Our correspondent will test and taste what some are
calling the Uber of the beach.
CURNOW: With the Summer Olympics coming up fast, it's not just Brazil's government that's scrambling to get ready. The beach vendors have to
prepare for those tourists. Shasta Darlington shows us an app made to connect with vacationers.
SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Out here on Rio's beaches, you can find almost anything under the sun, chilled drums
of iced tea, a brand new bikini or rent a beach --
DARLINGTON (voice-over): -- chair that comes with wi-fi.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm just on vacation here and I came here just because they have wi-fi.
DARLINGTON (voice-over): Now there's a new app that puts it all at your fingertips, Napraya (ph) or On the Beach. Order what you need and vendors
bring the items to you.
It's the Uber of Rio's white sands, according to founder Carol Machis (ph).
"Everybody wants to adapt to this new tendency," she says, improving sales and service based on user feedback. Beach vendors get a free phone, a 4G
plan and intensive training on how to take advantage of all the new data.
"It's not hard," he says. "I think in a day or even an hour you can figure it out."
Beachgoers can sign up with a credit card. No more lost coins, also making it safer for both buyers and sellers after a rash of beach robberies; 400
vendors are lining up to join, just in time for the 2016 Olympic Games.
"Everything's available in English and Spanish," she says.
"And by the Olympics, we hope to have French and Italian and, if everything works out, even Mandarin."
Of course, we figure we have to try it out.
How about an umbrella, beach chair and coconut water?
That was easy. Just a few clicks and now look what I get to do for the rest of the day. And it's tasty -- Shasta Darlington, CNN, Rio de Janeiro.
CURNOW: Thanks to Shasta for that report.
Well, you are watching CNN.
And he's out of hospital and back home. Doctors say that Japanese boy who went missing in the woods for six days is in good condition. Look at him.
His parents, if you remember, say they left their son on a mountain roadside as discipline for throwing stones at cars. They won't be charged.
The boy's disappearance set off a huge search. He was finally found in a hut at a military training ground.
And the gorilla exhibit at the Cincinnati Zoo has been reopened with a higher reinforced fence. Ten days ago, zoo officials killed a gorilla in
the enclosure after a young boy got inside.
The zoo director says the new fence will make a repeat incident very difficult. On Monday, prosecutors announced they would not file charges
against the boy's mother.
And in Texas, firefighters are mourning the loss of the last known search- and-rescue dog to help at the World Trade Center after the September 11th attacks. Bretagne was given a hero's salute as she was led into an animal
hospital for the last time. Due to declining health, the 16-year old had to be put down. She helped out during many disasters throughout her
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She served her country by deploying to the World Trade Center's 9/11 disaster. She deployed to Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Rita,
several other deployments.
Once she retired, she then moved on to serve her community here, where, for the past three years, she has gone once a week to Robert Rhodes Elementary
School in Waller (ph) and read with the first graders there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CURNOW: Well, thanks for joining me. I'm Robyn Curnow. I'll be back in just over an hour with more news.