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AT THIS HOUR WITH BERMAN AND MICHAELA
Security Stepped Up for July 4th Holiday; Trump Floating Possible V.P. Picks; Police: 2 Injured in Dhaka Attacks Now Suspects; Kevin Durant Signs with Golden State Warriors. Aired 11:30-12p ET
Aired July 4, 2016 - 11:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:30:00] KIMBERLY DOZIER, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Well, it shows that even though ISIS is under siege militarily inside Syria and Iraq, they can still command some of these attacks and inspire far more. They knew that this military confrontation and loss of territory was coming. And U.S. intelligence officials tell us that as far back as two years ago they started deploying operatives to places like Europe, clandestine networks across the African content, and possibly even in the United States. The idea being when they needed to draw attention elsewhere, they would activate these cells or lost communication with these cells they would act on their own to keep is' name in the headlines.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Bob, the U.S. is supporting efforts in Syria and Iraq to take back territory from ISIS, their so-called caliphate. What does ISIS need with the land? If they can carry out attacks or inspire these attacks around the world even as they're losing ground, we're told by military officials here, what does the land matter to them?
BOB BAER, CNN INTELLIGENCE & SECURITY ANALYST: In a sense, it doesn't matter much. The caliphate will go away. They need land to have a caliphate. But the problem is these cells, like the cells in Baghdad, it's very easy to make these truck bombs. This thing was devastating. It was 150 dead, hundreds more wounded. The problem is Iraqis have is you can make these things in a big garage. It's very easy. They're very good at it. They make the detonators work. Bangladesh, ISIS-inspired probably. They don't need direct communications, if you can get weapons. The problem is what we're seeing across the world is a backlash, a backlash the fall of Fallujah, Ramadi. This is the politics of despair. People identify with the Sunnis in Iraq and Syria. They're striking out where they can. It's a sign of weakness. On the other hand, they can cause a lot of bloodshed on the other hand.
BERMAN: Fascinating, talk about Iraq, Nic, coming on the heals of what is considered to be a success in Fallujah, the Iraqi forces in Fallujah were able to take back Fallujah from ISIS, yet this terror attack happened in the Iraqi capitol and the prime minister has shoes thrown at him just weeks after he helped retake Fallujah.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Yeah. What ISIS is doing with this particular attack in Baghdad, it's very pertinent to the Iraq part of the picture for them. They chose a Shia neighborhood. They are Sunni. They're trying to create as much of a sectarian division as absolutely possible. Now, the prime minister is a Shia and he -- those were Shia people throwing shoes and rocks at him. There are divisions within the Shia community. That there's nothing ISIS would like better than that. Would they would really like is to create a situation in Iraq that is so polarized in a sectarian basis there's no way that a Shia-led government in Baghdad can run the Sunni west of the country. And in their minds, they would be the ones sweeping in to try to take control and manage. There will come a point that the Iraqi government if it can't work with the Sunni tribes in Fallujah and Ramadi and the other places will have a big weakness in the West. ISIS, you know, in their minds is not going away. They're absolutely losing territory. They are lashing out in the ways that they can.
But to a degree what we're seeing is the maturation of their ability to use this caliphate that is central to their raise. If they don't have the caliphate, if we can take the land back, then that is a massive, massive blow to themselves. They can no longer call themselves caliphate. But they're lashing out through the maturation of the networks so they've inspired in other parts of the world. That's the dangerous part of this, of course.
BERMAN: Kimberly, what are your military sources telling you right now about future efforts about the so-called capitol of their caliphate and Mosul and Raqqa?
DOZIER: They're having to work slowly because they're working through partners, but the other thing that they're doing is slowly choking off each area, rather than going directly for them. Preparing the ground it's called so that ISIS by the time they get the full onslaught of Iraqi forces in Mosul or in Raqqa they will be starved out and under pressure and having infighting within their own organization, at least that's the plan. I think what people forget, though, is that ISIS itself has an apocalyptic vision which require is it at some point to lose the town which is about northeast of Aleppo by about 30 miles and that then, according to ISIS' beliefs triggers a victory for them where they go -- they fight for Jerusalem and then supposedly their caliphate expands. So, what we see as a loss, they're seeing as a signal for future victory.
[11:35:07] BERMAN: Nic, Bob, Kimberly, thanks so much.
Want to turn to politics right now. And the list of possible running mates for each major candidate right now. Just moments ago, something extraordinary, Donald Trump, the candidate himself, floated several names of possible vice presidential picks. Which one is the most likely? We'll discuss.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BERMAN: The vice presidential selection process. Happy veep- stakes, everyone.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I support Donald Trump to be the next president of the United States of America. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I would like to ask one question, Newt, you
going to do it?
NEWT GINGRICH, (R), FORMER SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: There's a lot of speculation. None of you should bet.
BERMAN: Hillary Clinton has to pick a running mate also.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm simply not going to speculate.
SEN. CORY BOOKER, (D), NEW JERSEY: You should talk to the Hillary Clinton campaign. But what I do know is on the Democratic side, there's many fabulous candidates.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BERMAN: It is the veep-stakes. Normally, it's like campaign insiders and friends of friends who hint at possible names of people being vetted and speculation. Not with the Trump campaign today. No. It was Donald Trump himself, the candidate, who in a spate of tweets floated names for the world to see. In three separate tweets, he praised the Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas, and said he was very impressed after spending time with Governor Mike Pence of Indiana, and finally he said he was looking forward to meeting Joni Ernst of Iowa today. They're meeting in New Jersey. He also added, "The only people not interested in being V.P. pick are the people who have not been asked."
CNN political director, David Chalian, joins me right now.
David, I think it is fascinating that Donald Trump -- I don't recall a candidate just all of a sudden listing names, you know, one morning for the world to see of people he is meeting with to be V.P.
[11:40:06] DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: That's nothing new that Donald Trump does this differently than every other candidate we've seen. We should fully expect that. But you're right. I mean, to say -- to put out on Twitter, hey, I'm meeting with Joni Ernst today when she is on his list of potential contenders just sort of invites the speculation frenzy that goes with this job.
Listen, I do think that we are entering that window now where this announcement could come. I mean, he's only two weeks away from the start of his convention. He had initially really talked a lot about wanting to hang on to this surprise for the convention and maybe he still will. But there have been arguments out there now that maybe he wants to get this out a little bit ahead of time to build up a head of steam going into the convention, but you see the contenders there, Newt Gingrich, Chris Christie, Joni Ernst, we that Gingrich and Chris the are meeting over the weekend.
BERMAN: It's interesting the public vetting taking place. The Clinton and the Democrats more traditional, we get winks and nods and things like that and behind closed doors.
CHALIAN: Right. Everybody who is on the list and being vetted now is in this awkward position because they're asked about it all the time and they want to say nothing about it, so you heard Cory Booker's answer to Brianna on "State of the Union" yesterday, please direct that question to the Clinton campaign. Again, I think we've seen some narrowing of Hillary Clinton's list. Certainly Senator Tim Kaine from Virginia, Elizabeth Warren, Sharrod Brown of Ohio, and a few others we don't have right there, what each of these folks mean, what do you need to balance out the ticket? I don't know that anyone is going to deliver something for Hillary Clinton to round out a resume, a missing piece of a resume or hopefully deliver a state. She seems to be much more focused on wanting a governing partner she can really envision working with everyday, day in and day out should she get elected for four, eight years. And I think that's where we're sort of being guided to look at more than trying to sort of check a political need box.
BERMAN: She can also wait. She can see who Donald Trump picks and figure out if she wants to counter that pick with her pick and see how the Republican convention goes and wait to make her pick. That's another dynamic.
David Chalian, thanks so much. Happy Fourth to you.
Let's discuss this veep-stakes. Joining me again, Michael Caputo, former advisor to Donald Trump; Alice Stewart, former communication director for Ted Cruz; and CNN political commentator, Bakari Sellers, former state rep in South Carolina and a Hillary Clinton supporter.
Guys, I want to rifle through some here questions. I want to ask each one of you who you think the pick will be for your candidate or for the Republican or Democratic candidate and who you think the best pick would be.
Alice Stewart, you are not affiliated with a campaign in any way, let me ask you first for Donald Trump, who do you think the pick will be? Pick be?
ALICE STEWART, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST & FORMER TED CRUZ COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: I think we're looking at someone like Newt Gingrich and Chris Christie. The person who has the most momentum Ted Cruz has tremendous momentum, needless to say there's some water that needs to be mended in between the two candidates, but that would be my pick. And for Hillary Clinton, I think Tim Kaine would be a good pick for her and I think he will be the pick for her. But either way, I think both of them are going to pick someone that will not steal the spotlight from them.
Alice, you're not suggesting he would entertain the notion of being Trump's pick, are you?
STEWART: I'm not saying that at all. I'm saying who I think would be the best V.P. given number two coming out of the primary has tremendous support. He is the leader of the conservative movement right now and I think he would be the best pick.
BERMAN: Bakari Sellers, lay it out for us. Hillary Clinton, who do you want her to pick and who do you think she will pick?
BAKARI SELLERS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Who do I want her to pick, Secretary Thomas Perez. I've been wrestling with this the past few weeks. He is Hispanic, he is brilliant, he brings the labor movement, he brings the left to the party and he can govern from day one. He would be my pick. And who I think she will pick, I think that you'll have a final three. I think you'll have Tim Kaine, I think you'll have Secretary Perez and you'll also have Representative Basara (ph). Those three would be the final look.
BERMAN: Hedging his bets. Unable to pick a single one. That is noted, Mr. Sellers.
Michael Caputo, let's go to you. Donald Trump, who do you think the front runner is right now for the Trump selection, and who would you pick if you were Donald Trump?
[11:45:14] MICHAEL CAPUTO, FORMER ADVISOR, DONALD TRUMP PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: I think Mike Pence is in the lead in this thing. He not only has experience as CEO of an important state, a state that by the way is a must hold state for Donald Trump. He's also got a real resume in the House of Representatives, where he was a member of the Republican leadership and did great things in the Armed Forces Committee and Judiciary Committee. I also like Tom Cotton and Joni Ernst because they're veterans. Tom Cotton's back-story is incredible. Joni Ernst, Iraq war experience as well. Both would bring real color and real personality to the ticket, some real experience. On Hillary Clinton's side, I think it should be Cory Booker. I like Cory Booker. He is a guy when he talks I listen because he sounds like a Democrat in the mold of Jack Kemp. It would do Hillary Clinton good.
BERMAN: All right. Now let's pick a part all of these selections you just made and find out what's wrong with all of them.
Alice, let me start with you. Michael was talking about the idea of Mike Pence. He can't run for election of governor of Indiana. Do you think that's something Mike Pence would be willing to do?
STEWART: Anyone given the opportunity to be considered for V.P. would certainly do that. And also I think he also is a good pick, certainly a top contender. We understand that Paul Manafort is pushing for him quite significantly and would be a good pick and willing to roll the dice. In the end, I think that's a great conversation, great to talk about. As we get closer to the general, I think the V.P. picks are not quite as consequential as we like to talk about at this point. We get down closer to November, it's all about how well they perform in these debates. But this is certainly a good conversation for now.
BERMAN: I agree with you on both those fronts. History shows it's not typically the V.P. pick that matters but it is really fun to talk about. We'll keep on talking about it. Bakari, I want to ask you about Tim Kaine because in some ways he
is considered by Democrats to be a safe pick, he has been both governor and Senator in a swing state, catholic. A lot of progressives, lot of Bernie Sanders throwing shade, as they say, on Tim Kaine. Our friend who works for us at CNN said, if it's Tim Kaine, he threatens to vote Green.
SELLERS: Well, I think that you'll hear a lot of that but progressives will coalesce and think Tim Kaine would be great candidate. I do think that Hillary Clinton in the mold of Democratic party, not just the Democratic party but the map 270 requires some diversity which is why you see a lot of us pushing for the mayor of Los Angeles. So I think that she will hedge her bets and I think she will go with a more diverse pick than Tim Kaine. He is a very popular pick. He will be a great vice president. But let me just shoot down a few things for you. I know we mentioned Cory Booker, Sharrod Brown, Elizabeth Warren. All of those have Republican governors who would then be able to replace them. The last thing we want is to have Chris Christie replacing a United States Senator. For all we know, Chris Christie may appoint himself.
BERMAN: We are getting word from the Clinton campaign there are Democrats who say the Clinton campaign wants to avoid the possibility of a Republican governor replacing V.P. with a Republican Senator.
Michael, Alice, Bakari, thanks so much for being with us and playing today's veep-stakes game. Appreciate it.
BERMAN: Authorities here in the United States on the Fourth of July on high alert. Terror is on the minds of security professionals. That, as the spade of attacks around the world left hundreds dead. We'll tell you what's being done here to keep Independence Day safe.
Plus, breaking basketball news. Oh, no. Kevin Durant has a new home and it's not the Boston Celtics. No one told me this in my ear. You're supposed to tell me this. Oh, no.
More when we come back.
[11:52:20] BERMAN: In Dhaka, Bangladesh, continued grieving over the terror attack that left 20 people dead. ISIS is claiming responsibility.
Let's discuss with former U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh and Nepal, James Moriarty.
Ambassador, thanks so much for being with us.
What is your sense now of the reach of ISIS in south Asia, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan? JAMES MORIARTY, FORMER U.S. AMBASSADOR TO BANGLADESH & NEPAL: I
think it is clear that ISIS is trying to recruit young people from particularly Bangladesh but also Pakistan, India, to join their movement to form what I have heard called wolf packs in their home countries to spread the ISIS ideology.
BERMAN: We are learning some of the identity of the attackers there. These are people who come we are told from educated, upper middle class families. Is that surprising to you knowing what you know of Bangladesh?
MORIARTY: Not really. Fundamentalists groups have been trying to recruit. Nonviolent fundamentalist groups have been recruiting in the universities of Bangladesh for a while. Combine that with the fact I is the upper middle class and middle class that spend a lot of time on the Internet. It is not the villagers who don't have access to the Internet. They are the ones who have proven in the past to be susceptible to the message and now getting a direct pitch they can access over the Internet.
BERMAN: We have seen other attacks on Westerners. They are seemingly deliberate, targeted attacks by extremists. Why is that nation fertile ground for Islamic extremism?
MORIARTY: You have always had a small a relatively fundamentalist version of Islam versus the moderate version of Islam practiced by most of the people in the country. When you combine that with the political polarization, the courts banning the largest Islamist primarily from participating in elections, you have freed up a lot of people who would have gone to that party in the past, who might have participated in the very violent youth wing of that party in the past. They are all of the sudden free to go where they want, free to listen to people who have an even more violent message and to do more violent things in the country.
BERMAN: Ambassador, there are many Americans who don't know a lot about Bangladesh. As you are talking about terror right there and the possibility for future terror, what is the reach of law enforcement in that nation, the capabilities of the police or law enforcement there?
[11:55:07] MORIARTY: Well, you know, I think the law enforcement has been confused by mixed messages from the politicians in the sense that the government has believed that the opposition, the main opposition political party has been behind these attacks even though they have been virtually no credible evidence produced to support that thesis. So by fear, that instead of trying to track down the evidence to wherever it leads, the police have actually been a little bit intimidated by the political messaging that's been going on up to now.
BERMAN: We know that ISIS likes to breed on political instability.
Ambassador James Moriarty, thanks for being with us. Appreciate your expertise on this, sir.
MORIARTY: Thanks very much.
BERMAN: We are going to shift gears. Breaking news from the world of sports, specifically the NBA. That man, Kevin Durant, very good at basketball, just signed as a free agent contract with a basketball team that is already very good. Kevin Durant is going to the Golden State Warriors. He was the biggest free agent of the year. One of the biggest free agents in years.
Andy Scholes joins us now by phone.
Once, someone told me it was like Elvis joining the Beatles. That's what this feels like, Andy.
ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It is unbelievable. The Warriors were a Draymond Green suspension away from being the greatest team, winning 73 games in the regular season. One game away from beating Lebron before Draymond. This signing of Durant is unbelievable. You rarely see one of the best teams ever sign one of the best players ever. They don't really time out that way. Warriors still have a bunch of friendly contracts. Steph Curry only makes 11 million, 12 million. Draymond Green just got paid. Clay Thompson is looking for a friendly deal. With the cap rising, it was available to sign Kevin Durant. This changes the landscape of the entire NBA. Warriors, the clear-cut favorite to win it next year, even though they already were. I can't imagine anyone being able to beat this team. They look too good.
BERMAN: At last, they have signed someone who can get a three- point shot. Maybe they will win 83 games in an 82-game season.
Andy Scholes, thanks so much.
Kevin Durant going to the Golden State Warriors. We'll have more on this and so much else right after the break.