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EARLY START

Clinton Stricken With Pneumonia, Cancels California Trip; Ceasefire in Syria at Sundown; Protests in the NFL. Aired 5-5:30a ET

Aired September 12, 2016 - 05:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[05:00:00]

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Overnight, she canceled a two-day trip to California because of her health situation. The secretary was supposed to leave this morning on this two-day trip that included interviews with Ellen DeGeneres, fund-raisers, policy speeches. Instead she is at home in Chappaqua with pneumonia. Her campaign confirmed the diagnosis last night after this. She stumbled while leaving a 9/11 Ground Zero ceremony. This is now the talk of the campaign. Of course, Donald Trump and his allies were already questioning Hillary Clinton's health and fitness. Her doctors at this point consider she is recovering nicely. She was diagnosed on Friday. We did not find out about it until yesterday.

Let's get more on that from CNN Senior Washington Correspondent Joe Johns.

JOE JOHNS, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: John and Christine, late Sunday, the Clinton campaign canceled the multi-day West Coast trip. She was scheduled to leave this morning. This capped the day of intense scrutiny for the Democratic nominee after questions were raised when a video emerged showing her stumbling and unsteady with secret service agents having to help her into a van in her motorcade leaving Sunday's 9/11 memorial ceremony early. The campaign had earlier said she left the event after becoming overheated. Clinton then went to her daughter's apartment in New York. When leaving there, she told reporters she was feeling great. Waved to supporters, even signed an autograph for a young girl. The campaign told us Mrs. Clinton was later examined at her home in Chappaqua. The doctor said she was overheated, dehydrated. And the campaign also revealed on Sunday, that Friday, she had been diagnosed with pneumonia, had been put on antibiotics and advised to rest and modify her schedule. The campaign has not said why it did not disclose the illness before Sunday's incident. Friday by the way was a long day for Mrs. Clinton. It was packed with events and activity. The day included a meeting with a bipartisan group of national security experts, a brief statement in which she took a few questions. She did an interview with CNN's Chris Cuomo. She did a fund-raiser. And we don't have an answer to why she didn't start cutting back given the diagnosis other than what we know. That this is a presidential campaign, a close race and having covered her for a couple of decades often on, she has a tendency to try to keep going almost no matter what. Now the campaign definitely has more questions to answer as it is clear her health has become a major campaign issue. John and Christine. CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: So Donald Trump has not talked about this. He has not uttered a word. He has not twitted a single character about this health scare. Sources in his campaign say they want to be respectful and staffers have been ordered not to post anything negative on social media. Any violation of that order, we are told, could be grounds for termination. A message and strategy -- within the Trump campaign to leave this one alone.

BERMAN: Well, they don't want to become part of the story of course. Respectful now is different than the way they handled it over the last few weeks, right? Rudy Giuliani and others raise so many questions -- about other issues. Not the pneumonia, but now I imagine they are sitting there going we told you so at least in private. I want to bring in Eugene Scott, CNN's politics reporter. Eugene, let me read you a statement. By the way, let me just tell the control room, the audio issues, I'm hearing myself in my ear.

ROMANS: Me too, please.

BERMAN: Let me turn that off. Eugene, this is the statement from Hillary Clinton's doctors. "Secretary Clinton has been experiencing a cough related to allergies. On Friday, during follow up evaluation of her prolonged cough, she was diagnosed with pneumonia. She was put on antibiotics and advised to rest and modify her schedule. While at this morning's event," this was the September 11th event, "she became overheated and dehydrated. I have just examined her and she is now rehydrated and recovering nicely." -- The very first sentence of this, second sentence actually, on Friday, she was diagnosed with pneumonia. We only found out about it Sunday after the 9/11 event. That's two days. That is not transparency.

ROMANS: And there is a question. If she hadn't been visibly -- caught on camera stumbled, would we even know about this?

EUGENE SCOTT, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Yes. Well, we had one of our analysts, David Gergen, saying -- previously we were going to find out at some point why -- did the campaign not decide to get ahead of it and let voters know and the media know in advance. I think it -- does bring that issues that people have had about transparency with this campaign and wonder what else could be out there. But I think the campaign now is trying to respond and get as much information before us as possible.

ROMANS: Let's be clear.

BERMAN: Pneumonia -- well pneumonia can be serious. It is not always serious, we both had pneumonia.--

ROMANS: We don't know what kind of pneumonia it is. Or what -- how -- you know, how serious it is.

BERMAN: But it could be fine. She could you know heal up and be back in her feet in a week. But all we have to go on is the doctor's word at this point in over the last week when it comes to their word, you know, we didn't know about it Friday. So at this point, that's why we're asking for more disclosure because the Clinton campaign has not been forthcoming.

[05:05:16] SCOTT: And I think voters have said in response that they would like to see more information, but not just about Hillary Clinton, but about Donald Trump and their health as well.

BERMAN: Donald Trump's health, just to be clear, embarrassingly did, right? We had that note that was written by his doctor.

ROMANS: Let's read it. Let's read it. This is from Harold Bornstein in the Lenox Hill Hospital. "His blood pressure and laboratory results are astonishingly excellent. His physical strength and stamina are extraordinary. If elected, Mr. Trump, I can state unequivocally will be the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency." This is the most important job in the world. The American voter needs more than this about Donald Trump's health, more than this about Hillary Clinton's health and more than any of this about tax records as well. I mean, transparency, I think needs to be elevated. This is an important, important job.

SCOTT: Very much so. I think voters have a lot of questions. -- And when you are running for president, you have to give a lot of answers that maybe a private citizen would not give because of what this job entails. Whether or not the campaigns will respond to that I think remains to be seen. But that's not going to slow down voters' desire for it.

BERMAN: Hillary Clinton's supporters know this actually shows restraint. She was out there campaigning on Friday a full day with pneumonia. This just shows she can fight through it. But the fact of the matter now is she is cancelling two days in the campaign trail during the stretch run. We had an event to fund-raisers in Northern California, Southern California. She was going to appear on "Ellen Show," she was going to give the economic speech in California as well. These are not days. At this stage of the game that all things -- being equal, you don't want to be off the campaign trail.

SCOTT: Absolutely. You want to be visible. While her supporters save this, suggest that -- she showed her strengths, critics said it brought in to question her judgement, why would you take on so many events on Friday the same day you are diagnosed with pneumonia.

ROMANS: I have a question. If -- being sitting as the President of the United States, more or less grueling in the stretch run. What do you call it, the final stretch of a presidential election, when you are campaigning for the biggest job in the land?

SCOTT: Well, we'll see soon perhaps because President Obama is supposed to campaign for Hillary Clinton within the next day or so. And perhaps he will speak on what his schedule will look like and whether either these candidates can match that.

BERMAN: Let's talk about what the events that Hillary Clinton did do on Friday night. This was a fund-raising event where she made a statement that was the big news this weekend before the pneumonia where she called half of Donald Trump's supporters. She put them in a basket of deplorables. Let's listen. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HILLARY CLINTON, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: To just be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables, right? The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islam phobic, you name it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: One thing -- Eugene, you know criticize the sin, not the sinner. You are not often going to win -- support by going after voters themselves.

SCOTT: No. That is a very risky move. I spoke with voters on Saturday. I saw two main reactions. There are people who obviously agree with Hillary Clinton and believe that Donald Trump has created a safer space for people to discriminate against people based on race and faith and gender. But there are a lot of people, especially independents who found the comments problematic and who are a bit more sympathetic with the concerns of Trump supporters, even if they are not supporting him yet. And they don't feel like her depiction of them was particularly charitable.

ROMANS: Interesting. All right Eugene. We'll talk to you in a few minutes. Thank you for coming in so early.

BERMAN: He was up all night. Eugene was literally up all night. He was on shows all night.

ROMANS: Oh, wow, hardest working man in show business. Time for an EARLY START on your money.

Global markets are under pressure right now. U.S. future indicates more selling in stocks today folks. On Friday, this is what happened. The Dow tumbled 394 points, the worst loss since June. The major average is also more than two percent, quite a change from the sleepy summer. Before Friday, the S&P 500 had not moved more than one percent in either direction for 43 straight sessions. Investors are worried the era of easy money from central banks might be ending, banks to pump more than $9 trillion into the global economy since the financial crisis. It is almost impossible to judge how much money that is slashing around that has helped juice stock markets, hooked investors on Fed stimulus. Last week, the European Central Bank did not expand its stimulus, its bond buying. Many investors have hoped it would. In the U.S., an interest rate hike is looking more likely based on what you're hearing some Fed officials say. They don't expect that it will happen this month but it is coming. And with the increasingly tight presidential race in the back drop, expect more volatility on Wall Street. Summer's over.

BERMAN: I guess so.--

ROMANS: Absolutely over.

BERMAN: All right. This morning, we are watching Syria very closely. A cease-fire is set to begin there in just a few hours. It's supposed to begin but you didn't see by these pictures, a very, very violent lead up calling into question whether or not it will take place at all. We are live at the Turkey/Syria border, that's next.

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[05:10:16]

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BERMAN: In just few hours, the ceasefire is scheduled to take effect in Syria. This was the agreement last week by Secretary of State John Kerry and Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov but the U.S. allies on the ground, inside Syria right were warning the U.S. they have serious reservations about the truce. This is after at least 90 people were killed over the weekend in a wave of devastating airstrikes. And the word is that these attacks are continuing even this morning.

But I get the CNN's senior international correspondent Arwa Damon live along the Turkish/Syrian border this morning. Arwa, what's the latest?

ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, John there have been clashes and fighting, bombardment taking place in a number of areas in Syria which do of course include rebel held Eastern Aleppo but the deadliest of the violence came over the weekend where around 90 people were killed. 60 of those died during an air bombardment on a marketplace in the province of Irbid. And John, people were out in the marketplace and it was crowded because they were shopping ahead of the Muslim holiday of Eid, which began today. And rebel groups point to this, activist point to this and say look, this is

[05:15:16] actually become the norm, ahead of the ceasefire or cessation of hostilities that are meant to be taking effect. There is quite often an intensification of bombardment -- as sickening as that sound. There have also been violations so far or hostilities reported by the Syrian regime where they say rebels have launched artillery attacks on some other neighborhood. But the bottom line is that the violence has intensified ahead of this. And the rebel group -- the rebel alliance has these reservations about the deal, has them for a number of reasons. First and foremost, they feel as if the arrangement as it stands does give the regime the upper hand, does give them a certain advantage. They also want to see Shia militias listed amongst the terrorist groups. These are militias that are fighting alongside the Assad regime forces. And they are very concerned about the fact that if this deal does hold for 48 hours and then is extended for another seven days, the U.S. And Russians will begin intelligence sharing, not just on ISIS targets but also on the targeting of a group that was known as the Nusra Front, the Al Qaeda affiliate that broke with Al Qaeda and renamed itself -- Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (ph). And they feel that the targeting of that group could potentially lead to casualties within their own ranks because the frontlines do overlap in a number of key areas. And while the U.S. does views this entity as being a terrorist organization on the ground, they have proven to be a fairly solid fighting force that has helped in fact push back the regime from certain areas. They are concerned about the lack of actual concrete mechanisms for monitoring potential violations and the fact that at this stage, this agreement does not necessarily apply to all of the areas that are under siege and do desperately need that humanitarian assistance John.

BERMAN: If the seven days of ceasefire, if that is actually reached, and that is a big if at this point, do we have any sense of how the coordinated intelligence sharing between the United States and Russia is supposed to work, particularly in targeting ISIS?

DAMON: Well the details are very vague at this point but we understand that there will be some sort of joint intelligence that will be established. Portions of intelligence will be shared, intelligence that is deemed to be necessary for this coordinated approach to be laid out. But it is a very tricky and sensitive situation especially given the lack of trust that currently exists between the U.S. and Russia which is why they do want to initially see this truce begin to hold for this first seven-day period.

BERMAN: All right. Arwa Damon for us on the Turkey/Syria border is monitoring the situation in there. Again, the cease-fire there scheduled to take place in a few hours. Will it? We'll keep you posted.

ROMANS: All right. It is 18 minutes past the hour. Patriotism and protests marking the start of the NFL season and there will be some exciting football too. We have Coy Wire with the latest on the bleacher report.

BERMAN: Right there. That's exciting football. Jimmy G.

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[05:20:16]

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BERMAN: Opening Sunday in the NFL, some drama on and off the field.

ROMANS: Coy Wire has more in the bleacher report. Hey Coy.

COY WIRE, CNN BLEACHER REPORT: Good morning guys. A lot of attention in place on the anthem since Colin Kaepernick sat to protest racial injustice and police brutality. Yesterday, on the 15th anniversary of 9/11, players and entire teams used the moment as a call for change, the Seattle Seahawks, the Dolphins taking stances before their game in Seattle. All 53 players for Seattle locked arms in a show of solidarity. But on the other sideline, Dolphin's player Arian Foster, Kenny Stills, Michael Thomas and Jelani Jenkins took a knee during the anthem. The Kansas City Chiefs also stood arm in arm with cornerback Marcus Peters raising a fist at the end of the line. Patriots' players Devin McCourty and Martellus Bennett waited until after the anthem to raise their fist. While Danny Amendola helped hold the giant flag on the field making statements before New England's match up with the Cardinals. And the Patriots made a strong statement there in the game too. No Brady, no Gronk, no problem. Brady out with the four-game deflate gate suspension. So Jimmy Garappolo on the road, loud crowd, and he delivered. Cool, poised, gutty, just some of the adjectives his own team mates used to describe him after the game. 73 percent of his passes, one touchdown, no INT's. John Brown has a pep in his step this morning. In fact beat the Cardinals 23-21. Monday night football, Pittsburgh and Washington face off at 7:10 p.m. ET and the New L.A. Rams head north to take on the 49ers in the late game. Late game last night, match rather, Stan Wawrinka, 31 years old becomes the oldest U.S. open man champ in 46 years. He beats world number one Novak Djokovic -- to the 3rd Gram Slam title of his career. Remember Djokovic had smooth sailing into the finals, several of his opponents unable to finish the match. Djokovic had played a total of only nine hours of tennis heading into the final while Wawrinka had played twice that. Where he said Wawrinka you are more courageous, more mentally tough, and deserve the title. Congrats to you. John Berman, I know you're feeling good this morning man.

BERMAN: You know, I could not stay awake for the game. I woke up and watched the replays nonstop for two hours right now. I think Jimmy Grappolo might be my new best friend.

ROMANS: You told me he is ridiculously -- he is handsome. He is ridiculously handsome. -- And he plays football handsomely. --

[05:25:16] Another handsome Patriot.

BERMAN: Coy Wire, thank you so much. Great to see you --

WIRE: You're welcome guys.

ROMANS: I don't want to objectify anyone you know. I'm just saying.

BERMAN: He's very talented.

ROMANS: You were right. I am confirming. --

BERMAN: You were not objectifying me though?

ROMANS: No. No. No, exactly.

BERMAN: All right.

ROMANS: A rough weekend for Hillary Clinton. New questions this morning about her health after this video surfaced showing Clinton stumbling as she left a 9/11 memorial service. She's been diagnosed with pneumonia on Friday she was and new controversy over that whole basket of deplorables comment from Friday. We'll break it all down next.

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ROMANS: This morning, questions swirling over Hillary Clinton's health, new video showing the candidate stumbling on her way out of a 9/11 ceremony. Clinton has now canceled her upcoming trip to California. What does all of this mean for her campaign?

BERMAN: All right. We are watching Syria very, very closely.