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EARLY START

Poll: Clinton Now 11 Points Ahead; Trump Escalates Defiant Tone; 'Apprentice' Creator: I Can't Release Outtakes; Al Gore To Campaign With Hillary Clinton; Sen. McCain Disavows Trump; Late Night Comedians Slash Trump; Record Flooding In NC After Hurricane Matthew; Billionaire Tax Battle: Trump Vs. Buffett. Aired 5-5:30a ET

Aired October 11, 2016 - 05:00   ET

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


[05:00:05] CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: Some rivers are still rising this morning. Still treacherous times there in North Carolina. Good morning, everyone. Welcome to EARLY START. I'm Christine Romans.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: I'm John Berman. It is Tuesday, October 11. It is 5:00 a.m. in the East. Four weeks until election day. And be honest -- when you woke up this morning, did you grab your phone to see what other political bombshell had dropped in just the last few hours, after a day which many thought it was some kind of moral victory that his running mate did not flee and he only lost the active support of the House Speaker. Donald Trump is headed to Florida today as is Hillary Clinton. Trump seems to sticking to his attacks on Clinton over her husband's long-ago sex scandals.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: If they want to release more tapes saying inappropriate things, we'll continue to talk about Bill and Hillary Clinton doing inappropriate things. There are so many of them, folks.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: New polls show that Trump could be in serious trouble after the release of the "Access Hollywood" tape where Trump bragged about his ability to grab a woman's genitals and get away with it because he's famous.

A new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll shows Clinton with an 11-point lead. This poll was conducted after the tape came to light but before Sunday's debate. They're in the field again today, or were yesterday. We're going to get those results today. It'll be interesting to see.

Overnight, Trump was in Pennsylvania. That is a battleground state that could be looking tougher and tougher for him. CNN's Sunlen Serfaty is there.

SUNLEN SERFATY, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, John and Christine. Donald Trump, as he campaigns throughout Pennsylvania, is keeping up his defiant tone, this scorched earth strategy as he tries to rehabilitate his campaign, lashing back at Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, who held a conference call with Republican lawmakers telling them that he would no longer defend Donald Trump. He would no longer campaign with Donald Trump, although he is not revoking his endorsement of Donald Trump, and also telling Republican lawmakers it's up to them to do how they see fit. Donald Trump lashed out in a tweet, and also at his rally here in Pennsylvania where he mentioned Paul Ryan, just not by name.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Isn't it too bad that we don't have stronger leadership on both sides? I mean, you know, you have people that can't fix a budget, but then they start talking about their nominee, but they can't fix the budget. Isn't it really sad that we don't have stronger leadership on both sides? But that will change if we win on November 8.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SERFATY: This us versus them mentality, Washington establishment versus him mentality, is something that Donald Trump has used and leaned on many times in the past, especially during the early days of his campaign, certainly now, it potentially helps remotivate his tried and true core base of supporters. John and Christine --

ROMANS: All right, Sunlen, thank you for that. So what else is out there? Is there something else out there? A former "Apprentice" producer has tweeted that quote, far worse video exists than what has already been leaked from "Access Hollywood". But "Apprentice" creator Mark Burnett says he does not have the legal right to release footage from the show. He is barred by certain contracts, he says, but he denies he threatened to sue any employee who might be thinking about leaking video.

BERMAN: Both Bill and Hillary Clinton will be in Florida today. The former president with a series of voter registration events across the state. Secretary Clinton with a big rally in Miami. She's going to be joined on the trail by former vice president Al Gore. Now he has devoted himself to climate change over the last several years. He hasn't been that deeply involved in politics, but his presence there today intended to send a clear, clear message. Remember, it's Florida. CNN's Jeff Zeleny has a preview.

JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTO CORRESPONDENT: John and Christine, Hillary Clinton is heading to Florida today and she'll be joined on the campaign trail by someone who we've not seen in the political sphere for years. That is former vice president Al Gore. He will be making the case at his first stop for Hillary Clinton, focusing on climate change. Also focusing on some millennial voters and others who may not be quite yet on board with her candidacy or enthused about her candidacy.

Now when she was campaigning in Michigan and Ohio yesterday, she was still talking about Donald Trump and all of his locker room talk.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: And last night, he doubled down on his excuse saying that well, it's just locker room banter. You know what's happened today which is so interesting is that a lot of athletes and coaches from the NBA, from Major League Baseball, from the NFL, and more, have been coming forward tweeting, they've been saying, no, that's not what happens in our locker rooms.

(CHEERING)

And I just happen to think that our athletes and our coaches know a lot more about what happens in locker rooms than Donald Trump does.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[05:05:03] ZELENY: Now that is a confident Hillary Clinton. She was making that case before one of the largest audiences yet of her campaign. Thousands upon thousands of people gathered on the campus of the Ohio State University to listen to Hillary Clinton speak. But they were also there for another reason. Today is the deadline for voter registration in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and other battle ground states. So when Secretary Clinton and Al Gore appear later today in Miami, that will be also their central focus, getting people signed up to vote. We're also getting word Bill Clinton also heading back to Florida for now the final day of voter registration, now with 28 days to go before the election. John and Christine --

ROMANS: All right, Jeff. Thanks for that.

2,000 more e-mails have been posted online, apparently from the hacked account of Hillary Clinton's Campaign Chairman, John Podesta, the second WikiLeaks dump in four days now. It covers a wide range of strategy sessions from 2015, including how to handle the release of the book "Clinton Cash" which alleged illegal activity at the Clinton Foundation.

In another e-mail, a longtime Clinton aide refers to Chelsea Clinton as a quote, spoiled brat. The Clinton camp is slamming Donald Trump for cheering on an e-mail release they claim was engineered by Vladimir Putin. They say the focus should be on who's behind the hack, not what's in it.

BERMAN: All right. Let's discuss now. CNN Politics Reporter Eugene Scott is here. Eugene, it's great to see you this morning. Over the last 24 hours --

ROMANS: Nothing has happened.

BERMAN: Nothing's happened. Nothing's happened at all. Let's start with this war of words between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump says he can go way dirtier than he has already. He'll dredge up the past. Hillary Clinton says, essentially, go for it. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CLINTON: On the day that I was in the situation room watching the raid that brought Osama Bin-Laden to justice, he was hosting "Celebrity Apprentice". So if he wants to talk about what we've been doing the last 30 years, bring it on.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: Bring it on. She says, and the Clinton campaign likes what they're doing right now, or how they're doing right now. But 28 days in the gutter is a long time.

EUGENE SCOTT, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Yes, very much so. And you have to ask both campaigns, what is the ultimate goal right now. I am under the impression that people want to get undecided voters and independent voters to make a decision. I don't know if talking about what happened in these candidates' personal lives will get people off the bubble to make a decision. I think both of them have to focus on issues that voters say matter to them most right now.

ROMANS: You know, Donald Trump last night really -- he was in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, really ramping up his attacks. He is no fan of the media. Even as he watches the media --

BERMAN: Good morning, Donald.

ROMANS: Right. And tweets to the media and consumes the media and uses the media, he -- he's really playing into this, that we are biased, that the media are in the tank for Hillary Clinton. Listen to him last night.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: And this crooked media. You talk about crooked Hillary. They are worse than she is.

I'm telling you. They are so dishonest. Without the media, without the media, Hillary Clinton couldn't be elected dog catcher. I mean that. It's true. It's true.

(CHEERING)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: John Berman says 28 days in the gutter is a long time. 28 days trying to cover a campaign that hates you is a long time, too. This is -- do you think he's going to continue this sort of just war with journalists?

SCOTT: Probably, because it works very well with his base. You see they respond very well to it, but I don't know that it helps him and that it gets the issues that he says matter to him to take front page of these publications that he says don't favor him. I think this would be a great time to get the ideas out there that he's hoping will show that he could be a better president than Hillary Clinton, but that doesn't seem to be the focus.

BERMAN: So I had some Democrats familiar with the Clinton campaign tell me yesterday they're thinking about expanding their map, looking at places like Arizona and Georgia. The main point isn't to win those states necessarily, but help out with senate elections. Arizona -- Ann Kirkpatrick is running against John McCain. Could be a pickup. She's pretty far behind, but John McCain is in a tough place, right. He has said he will no longer vote for Donald Trump. He made that clear. But he needs Trump supporters still, theoretically, to win that election, and a debate overnight, you could see how he was trying to sort of thread this needle. Let's listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: I just worry, frankly, and this probably has nothing to do with this debate, but I worry about the future of the Republican Party. We're going to have a lot of work to do after this election is over.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: So Eugene, you can see now a lot of Republican candidates are having to deal with this, and they will have to deal with it every day for the next month.

SCOTT: Right. Well, I covered politics in Arizona and many people on the right are really frustrated with Donald Trump and they are pressuring their senators to make a better decision for the future of the party. And that's not just in Arizona. That's across the country. And so we're seeing people have to approach this in a way that they weren't going to, maybe even at the beginning of last week.

BERMAN: There's a lot of anger, though, for some of the candidates who have cut and run from Donald Trump, too. They're getting it on both sides, to be sure.

[05:10:03] ROMANS: Can we talk about the -- last night, the comedians had a field day with -- everything that happened Friday, they missed from last week, the big comedians. So let's listen to a little bit of some, I guess some late night laughs making fun of Donald Trump and the --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHEN COLBERT, COMEDIAN: What gym does Donald Trump belong to? In my locker room, we are just trying to avoid eye contact and gently encourage old man Wallace to put on a towel.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People didn't know what was crazier. His excuse or the idea that Trump's ever been to a gym.

(LAUGHTER)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When guys go in a locker room -- women don't know this. We go nuts. We start using curse words, we look at pornography, we throw up on each other. It's disgusting.

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: There was a lot where that came from. But it's so interesting to me, because a lot of women and a lot of men have been saying this whole locker room banter thing -- I mean, it wasn't a looker room. He was miked for an interview. He was actually on the job. And something interesting too. In "The New York Times" today, (inaudible) had a piece about how this is like an HR nightmare, when you think about -- that was a workplace. That was a workplace where all of this was happening.

SCOTT: Yes, and very much so. I can't help but to wonder if that shaped in part why NBC responded the way they did with Billy Bush in terms of workplace concerns and creating an environment that does not allow for this type of conversation.

ROMANS: Well, one employee gets sidelined, the other one can still run for the biggest, most important job in the nation.

BERMAN: Seth Meyers on NBC last night made the comment that, you know, Billy Bush may have lost his job as a third hour anchor of "Today Show", but Donald Trump is still running for president. Eugene, we will see you again shortly. Thanks so much.

Hundreds of people stranded by flood waters after Hurricane Matthew. The only way out, a boat or a helicopter. We'll show you the rescues. That's next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROMANS: All right. The flood waters keep rising in North Carolina in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew. The Governor says the flooding is likely to extend through the end of the week. Much of the state has been inundated by record flooding that washed away roads. 18 inches of rain fell in some areas over the weekend. Hundreds of people stranded in their homes, had to be rescued by boat. In Fayetteville, few homes were spared by the flash floods.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You go in the room and there's nothing. You've got heavy furniture and it's all in pieces and it's on the other side of the room or in another room. I don't understand it. There's a few things that can be cleaned and saved, but just about everything's gone.

ROMANS: There have been now 27 storm-related deaths in the Southeast, 12 in North Carolina alone.

BERMAN: Breaking overnight. A teacher's strike has been averted in Chicago. The head of the teachers union announced a tentative agreement with the Chicago public schools. Teachers will be in classrooms this morning as scheduled. Union negotiators deliberated through the night after receiving 11th hour settlement proposal from the city to avoid that strike.

ROMANS: Donald Trump says billionaires like Hillary Clinton supporter Warren Buffett are just like him when it comes to taxes.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: First of all, I pay hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes. Many of her friends took bigger deductions. Warren Buffett took a massive deduction.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Now Buffett supports Hillary Clinton and he put out a scathing takedown of Trump's claim. Buffett says this. Quote, I have paid federal income tax every year since 1944 when I was 13. Though being a slow starter, I owed only $7 in tax that year. I have copies of all 72 of my returns and none uses a carry forward. End quote.

The carry forward of course is the $916 million that Donald Trump carried forward so that he didn't have to pay federal income tax over 18 years.

Buffett says in 2015, his adjusted gross income was a cool $11.6 million. He took $5.5 million in deductions, mostly from charitable contributions. His federal income tax bill was $1.9 million. (inaudible) 16 percent. That is Warren Buffett's effective federal tax rate in 2015. The top income tax bracket is 39.6 percent. But Buffett pays mostly capital gains tax, which is 15 percent, and this is the basis for the so-called Buffett rule that Hillary Clinton is proposing. It would force millionaires to pay a minimum of 30 percent of their income in taxes.

BERMAN: So 72 years. Warren Buffett has saved his tax returns for 72 years?

ROMANS: He's diligent.

BERMAN: When he was a kid? He was like saving his tax returns --

ROMANS: I have my first tax return.

BERMAN: What is wrong with you?

ROMANS: I was 14.

BERMAN: What is wrong with you people?

ROMANS: I have mine.

BERMAN: All right. The Chicago Cubs, one win away from advancing to the national league championship series. But they blew their chance to get there last night. They dropped the game to the Dodgers. A heroic performance by the Dodgers. Will it be enough? Sorry. It's Giants, I should say.

ROMANS: Don't confuse me. I'm already confused enough.

BERMAN: I know, I know. I screwed it all up. But I still have the booming voice. Coy Wire with this morning's "BLEACHER REPORT". That's next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [05:23:14] BERMAN: Just a few minutes ago, like practically for real, the San Francisco Giants stormed back to beat the Cubs in extra innings, a thriller that lasted really until very recently.

ROMANS: Coy Wire has more in this morning's "BLEACHER REPORT". Hey, Coy.

COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Good morning to you both. Yes, not many hours ago. This started at 9:00 p.m. Eastern, ended at 2:42 in the morning. So over five hours of action. Took until the bottom of the 13th to find a winner. Totally worth it for Giants fans, though. Second baseman Joe Panik delivers the Giants' first walk off winner in a post season elimination game since the 1911 World Series. Double off the right field wall and center right, and Brandon Crawford scored that game winner (ph). Cubs still lead that series 2-1. They need just one more win to advance to the national league championship series. Game four is tonight at 8:40 Eastern. Going to be a good one.

Cleveland Indians, they advance to the American League Championship Series after sweeping the Red Sox in Boston. Now that loss ends the career of the Red Sox's legendary slugger, David Ortiz.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAVID ORTIZ, ATHLETE, BOSTON RED SOX: I was cheering so bad once I got out of the game. I was screaming at my team to put me back in it. Make me wear this uniform one more day. Because I wasn't ready to be over with the playoffs.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WIRE: Monday night football action. Buccaneers, panthers, and a rough season thus far for Bucks rookie kicker (ph) Roberto Aguayo. But he delivers when it matters most. A 38 yard field goal as time expires, giving Tampa Bay a 17-14 win. Carolina dropping to 1-4 after reaching the Super Bowl last season. Now since 1990, teams with that record have just a six percent chance of even making it to the playoffs. Rough start for the Panthers.

[05:25:10] Atlanta Hawks and the defending NBA champion, Cavaliers, bowing their heads and standing arm in arm ahead of their preseason game last night. A first ever unity game as the 100 gay mens chorus sang the national anthem. The purpose of the message was not just to set aside differences, but to celebrate them. Help bring people together. Hawks organization played videos of players from both teams speaking out about what unity means to them. Guys, athletes taking stands for social causes. More and more we are seeing them use their platforms to create positive change in the community.

BERMAN: Nice to see. Very nice to see.

So if Donald Trump is going to win the White House, he will have to do it without Speaker Paul Ryan. More on the battle within the fractured Republican Party. That's next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)