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FBI Director Standing Firm; Clinton: "There is No Case Here"; Trump and Pence Teaming Up; Iraq Mosul Offensive. Aired 4:30-5a ET
Aired November 1, 2016 - 04:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[04:30:30] CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: James Comey standing firm. The FBI boss thinks he made the right call on Hillary Clinton's e-mail investigation.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: The Clinton campaign disagrees. It is accusing James Comey of a blatant double standard.
ROMANS: Donald Trump and Mike Pence on the same stage, talking Obamacare and making health care great again.
Welcome back to EARLY START. I'm Christine Romans.
BERMAN: I'm John Berman. Thirty minutes after the hour. And the breaking news, just one to go until Election Day.
And there's been a slew of issues in the last few hours. James Comey says he will not give an update on the Clinton e-mail investigation until his agents have reached a conclusion. Hillary Clinton is saying there is no case here. Donald Trump warns it would become a constitutional crisis for the country if Hillary Clinton is elected.
ROMANS: But, first, the FBI urgently moving forward with its search of newly discovered e-mails from a laptop belonging to disgraced former Congressman Anthony Weiner. There are thousands of e-mails on that laptop.
CNN politics reporter Eugene Scott tracking the latest for us.
And, what, Eugene, good morning --
EUGENE SCOTT, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Good morning.
ROMANS: What is Director Comey saying?
SCOTT: Well, he according to an aide is just doing OK. He had a really weekend. But he is sticking to his original decision. He is not planning to speak out more until after the investigation is concluded, yes.
BERMAN: Yes, Hillary Clinton is saying, you know, you think you had a rough weekend, James Comey. What about me? What are agents doing right now? They got the search warrant to go through the e-mails Sunday night. We are now, what, 40 hours in. What's the process?
SCOTT: So, the process involves using the equipment that the FBI uses out in Quantico. So, they are separating Huma's e-mails from Anthony Weiner's e-mails and they have to sift through all of those for the relevant emails, looking for things that are classified and perhaps most importantly, they want to see if the sender knew that they were classified.
ROMANS: And what about Huma Abedin here? What is she saying? Her team saying?
SCOTT: Well, we haven't heard from her out in public since all of this broke. But we do have --
ROMANS: She's not on the trail, right?
SCOTT: No, she's not. It hasn't been since Friday. But we do have a statement from her lawyers. Her lawyers are saying that :Abedin only learned for the first time on Friday from press reports, the possibility that a laptop belonging to Mr. Weiner could contain e- mails of hers. While the FBI has not contacted us about this, Ms. Abedin will continue to be, as she always has been, forthcoming and cooperative."
ROMANS: She said that Comey says, a source close to Comey says he's doing OK. But the issue here for him, I guess, he was stuck between two bad choices. Is that what they're saying?
SCOTT: Yes, the thought is that he was going to lose either way. He's going to get criticism from the right and from left. But he did what he thought was best, even though everyone doesn't agree. It's worth noting that the White House, Obama saying he does have confidence in Comey.
BERMAN: All right. Eugene Scott, thanks so much. A lot of developments this morning. Appreciate it.
SCOTT: Thank you, guys.
BERMAN: So, the Clinton campaign is accusing James Comey of a blatant double standard. Campaign manager Robby Mook jumped on reporting by CNBC that last month, Comey opposed naming Russia as the so-called state actor hacking Democratic officials. CNBC reports that Comey argued it was too close to Election Day.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
ROBBY MOOK, HILLARY CLINTON CAMPAIGN MANAGER: It's impossible to view this as anything less than a blatant double standard. That Director Comey would show more discretion in a matter concerning a foreign state actor than one involving the Democratic nominee for president is nothing short of jaw dropping.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
BERMAN: Now, we should note that CNN does not have the same reporting on Comey and Russia, and the FBI has declined to comment.
ROMANS: On the campaign trail, Hillary Clinton says flat out there is no case here. In Ohio, Clinton invited investigators to go ahead and dig into her aides' e-mails. She said they will find nothing.
Joining us now live on the phone from Chappaqua, New York, CNN's Phil Mattingly.
What is the word from team Clinton about how they'll perceive the next seven days with this email controversy out there?
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (via telephone): Hey, Christine. What you're really seeing I think is kind of a dual tract. You heard Robby Mook in the sound that John played. They are in full attack mode when it comes to her advisers, going after James Comey, going after the FBI, trying to under cut his argument, but undercut Comey and maybe even taken a few shots at his integrity. But then there is also what Hillary Clinton is doing. Christine, as you noted. She is licking at the letter that James said to Capitol Hill, but in a less aggressive manner.
Take a listen to what she had to say in Cincinnati.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You know, there is a new e-mail story about why in the world the FBI would decide to jump into an election without evidence of wrongdoing with just days to go?
[04:35:10] If they want to look at some more e-mails of one of my staffers, by all means, go ahead. Look at them. And I know they will reach the same conclusion they reached when they looked at my e-mails last year, right?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTINGLY: You get an invitation there, if you will, to investigators, because I think it's important to note, when it comes to what Clinton's team wants to do going forward, clearly, they want to undercut what the FBI is saying, but also, think about 12 days before the election and not seven when this hadn't happened yet, when the Clinton campaign was comfortable with their strategy, every comfortable with their message, very comfortable with their math. You have not seen them diverge at all to those key issues even in the wake into what was really a bombshell moment in this campaign.
So far, they are sticking to the strategy in that regard and that's the expectation going forward. Florida today, big rally in Arizona on Wednesday. As long as the schedule stays put, that means that behind the scenes they are feeling confident to look at that, guys.
BERMAN: It is interesting. Some of those numbers, we just got a poll a few minutes ago from Franklin and Marshall in Pennsylvania, showing Hillary Clinton maintains an 11-point lead in that state. Pennsylvania is a blue state that Donald Trump will be there today and wants to turn red, Phil.
MATTINGLY: Yes, that's exactly right. And I think this is interesting element here. If you talk to Trump campaign advisers, they say we are on offense. This is why we are going to New Mexico, this is why we're going to Wisconsin. This is why they are giving the big Obamacare speech today with Mike Pence and Donald Trump in Pennsylvania.
When you talk to Clinton advisers, they look at this and say, this is what we saw in 2012 with Mitt Romney in Pennsylvania. This isn't on offense. This is looking at a map with no pathway forward with traditional red states and needing to try to open it up. They say this is last minute.
If you look at, John, you know this well, you look at Wisconsin, clearly, the Senate race is tightening up. There are some numbers moving. The Clinton campaign has gone up on air with advertising there, sending campaign there. So, maybe there's some movement there. But if you look at states like Pennsylvania, if you look at places like New Mexico where Donald Trump is now claiming they can start putting that map into play, the Clinton advisers don't see it.
Where they see, the biggest play right now, the biggest battleground potentially is Arizona. And Donald Trump is in trouble if he is defending Arizona.
BERMAN: Phil Mattingly, you are the man, calling us from a parking lot in Chappaqua, New York, staking out Hillary Clinton who is still sleeping at this moment. Phil, thanks so much. Really great to have you along with us.
MATTINGLY: Thanks, guys.
ROMANS: News never sleeps.
BERMAN: No, and certainly, Phil Mattingly never does. He's an action photo right there. I don't know if you saw it, like his head shot, there's an action photo -- reporter.
All right. This morning, Donald Trump and his running mate Mike Pence, they are headed to Pennsylvania as Phil was talking about, to talk about Obamacare and share the stage with members of Congress and also Ben Carson. They're going to go after what they call the disaster increases in the Obamacare premiums and about Donald Trump's plan to fix it. You can bet Donald Trump will bring up Hillary Clinton and the e-mail issue, which has done on the trail regularly.
Sara Murray has the latest on that.
SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Good morning, John and Christine.
While Donald Trump kicked off his week by spending the day trying to convince the American voters that the FBI was sure to find the worst in Hillary Clinton's e-mails and warning them that if they elect her, she'll be embroiled in scandal for years to come.
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We will be facing the very possibility of a constitutional crisis with many dimensions and, you know, this is so true, deleterious consequences should Secretary Clinton win this election. In other words, we're going to be tied up in court for the rest of our lives with this deal. She's not going to win the election, but I'm just saying.
MURRAY: Now, even though FBI Director James Comey has said it's too early to say whether anything significant will come out of these e- mails which came from the computer that was shared by Huma Abedin, a Clinton aide, and her husband, Anthony Weiner, that certainly hasn't stopped Donald Trump from seizing on it on the campaign trail. It's giving his campaign new hope that they may be able to compete in blue states that once seen out of their reach. He spent Monday barnstorming in Michigan and on Tuesday, he is hitting up Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
Back to you, guys.
ROMANS: Sara, thank you.
The Trump campaign quickly distancing itself from a self-described white nationalist supporter, Trump supporter, who paid for robocalls in Utah, smearing a third party candidate.
Now, these calls to nearly 200,000 homes, they slam Evan McMullin, an independent doing well enough there to turn Utah into a battleground state. The calls focus on McMullin's support for gay marriage.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
WILLIAM JOHNSON: My name is William Johnson. I'm a farmer and a white nationalist. I make this call against Evan McMullin and in support of Donald Trump. Evan McMullin is an open borders, amnesty supporter. Evan has two mommies. His mother is a lesbian, married to another woman.
[04:40:01] Evan is okay with that. Indeed, Evan supports the Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
ROMANS: The call without a scrap of evidence, that McMullin himself is a closeted gay man because he is single and in his 40s. The Donald Trump campaign swiftly condemned the robocall saying it had no connection to it.
BERMAN: Breaking overnight. Senator Burr is apologizing for suggesting gun owners put a bullseye on Hillary Clinton. The North Carolina Republican made that comment in private over the weekend. CNN broke the story. In a recording, you hear Burr talking about a visit he made to a gun shop the day before.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
SEN. RICHARD BURR (R), NORTH CAROLINA: Nothing made me feel any better than I walked into the gun shop I think yesterday in Oxford and there was a copy of "Rifleman" on the counter. It's got a picture of Hillary Clinton on the front of it. I was shocked at that that it didn't have a bullseye on it.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
BERMAN: The Brady Campaign, a pro-gun control group, says it's calling on Richard Burr to step down. Burr says the comment is inappropriate. The Clinton campaign is not commenting.
ROMANS: Open enrollment for Obamacare starts today. Premiums are up an average of 22 percent, cost very widely depending on age, location, and the level of coverage. Here's what people are paying. These are never 27-year-old enrollee. The cheapest premiums are in New Hampshire at $217 a month, a little change from last year.
There are big increases in the middle of the scale, like in Arizona, and Oklahoma. A 27-year-old in Arizona will now pay $420. Also, in Oklahoma, about $420 a month. The highest premiums in Alaska at $760.
The government, though, says 85 percent of enrollees will get subsidies. Three-quarters pay won't pay more than $100 a month. That is based on these income levels depending on how many people here in the household.
For a single policyholder, it is $47,520 for a family of four, it's more like $97,000. If you are enrolling in Obamacare, it's crucial you shop around this year. And I will say, it's open enrollment. If you have company sponsored health care. It's open enrolment.
Premiums are rising there as well. It is critical. Plans are changing. It is critical to spend the time today on work hours if you can to figure out what is best for you.
BERMAN: All right. We have just seven days to go in this presidential election. What is the latest from the trail? We have new developments and new polling and new developments on where the candidates are going today. That's next.
[04:46:44] ROMANS: One week to go. Today is the --
BERMAN: It's the penultimate Tuesday.
ROMANS: It is. Let's bring you --
BERMAN: Thank you so much for letting me say that.
ROMANS: I want to share the pain with the entire world. Let's bring in "Newsday" columnist and syndicated radio talk show host
Ellis Henican. I want to talk about what we heard yesterday from Robby Mook from the campaign. He is talking about a double standard in terms of James Comey and this e-mail controversy, this new email investigation. Let's listen to what he said.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
ROBBY MOOK, HILLARY CLINTON CAMPAIGN MANAGER: It's impossible to view this as anything less than a blatant double standard. That Director Comey would show more discretion in a matter concerning a foreign state actor than one involving the Democratic nominee for president is nothing short of jaw-dropping.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
ROMANS: What do you make of this? He is injecting the Trump Russia thing into here, right? What was going on here?
ELLIS HENICAN, NEWSDAY COLUMNIST: Well, listen, once the FBI goes beyond doing an investigation that either leads or doesn't lead to criminal charges, you are in some mighty, dicey waters. It's hard to know which investigation to talk about and how much to say, how to dribble out the information. I mean, investigations are messy and complicated. There is a reason the protocols are in place.
ROMANS: He is talking about the controversy here about whether the United States should say that Russia is meddling in the American election, right? And that Comey was advising against that --
BERMAN: I think that one thing is clear. That in the last 24 hours, the Clinton campaign wants focus to go on Russian and Donald Trump. And we've seen a whole bunch of articles all of a sudden about it as well. So, it makes you think was there information leaked? They want to try to muddy the waters a little bit on this subject. You know, is it working?
HENICAN: A little bit. That is half the strategy. The other half is call for openness. We want to see everything.
But you know what? It is a safe call to make, because as a practical matter, it's very difficult to go through such a huge number of e- mails to figure out what's confidential, bring in other agencies. So, you can call for openness and then deflect the conversation into other areas. That's essentially the strategy.
ROMANS: We're going to hear from Donald Trump and Mike Pence and talk about Obamacare among other things and maybe they'll be also talking about this, the e-mail controversy and the gift in the near-term for the campaign. Listen to how Donald Trump capitalized on this yesterday in Warren, Michigan.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Thank you, Huma. Thank you, Huma.
Do you think right now that Hillary Clinton is happy with the services of Huma? I don't think so. I don't think she likes Huma.
I never thought we would be saying, thank you to Anthony Weiner. Never. Thank you, Anthony. I never liked you, Anthony. I never liked you. But hank you very much.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROMANS: He said Huma four times.
HENICAN: And three Anthonys in there today.
Listen, this is good red meat. I mean, what else you need to do to rev up an audience? It would give Trump a way to shift the conversation on to something that puts Hillary Clinton on the defensive. I mean, that is what happens in the last, what is it, penultimate Tuesday.
[04:50:03] BERMAN: Next Tuesday is the final Tuesday of the election when people vote. Donald Trump and Mike Pence go to Pennsylvania. This is a blue state.
HENICAN: And a tough one.
BERMAN: They have to flip it. I mean, they have to flip something.
And there is a new poll out just moments from Franklin and Marshall which has Hillary Clinton up 11 in Pennsylvania right now, which shows the steep climb he has right there. He is doing that. He went to Pennsylvania today. Michigan yesterday. New Mexico the day before and Colorado. They are working to flip.
HENICAN: You are asking the right questions. If not these states, which states. You got to hold on to Arizona, keep an eye on that one.
But you know what? He's going to have to make some big shifts. I mean, 270 is a large number for any Republican and bigger for this Republican. Yes, something big has to got to happen. I'm not sure if the e-mails alone are going to do it.
ROMANS: Ellis Henican, nice to see you, bright and early this morning.
HENICAN: Always. I like the early mornings. It's cool.
BERMAN: I don't believe you on that.
HENICAN: It's fun. Once you're up, you're up.
ROMANS: Early bird gets the worm. That's what I always say. Thank you.
Donald Trump's most prominent backer in Silicon Valley under fire for his support of the nominee. Oh, now, he gives an impassioned testimony to why Donald Trump will make America normal again. That's next.
[04:55:23] BERMAN: All right. Donald Trump's running mate, Mike Pence, left in the dark at a rally in Clearwater, Florida, last night, literally.
Pence was about ten minutes in his appearance when power blew out of the airport hangar where he was speaking, someone grabbed a bull horn and flash lights and the show went on. Listen to Pence once the audio was restored.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. MIKE PENCE (R), VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm here with the lights on, the lights off, the bullhorn and flashlights, because I'm here for this team. I'm here for this movement. I'm here for this cause to make America great.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BERMAN: He's like the Blair witch running mate. Mike Pence visited the Florida space coast earlier in the way. He cited the space program as another example of American leadership in decline and promised more support for NASA in a Trump administration.
ROMANS: All right. Let's get a check on CNN Money Stream. Dow futures higher this morning. Optimism coming from Asia. Shares rising overnight.
There was a manufacturing report in China, the highest level in two years. Stock markets in Europe also trading higher. They opened up with just about an hour ago. Oil is up.
October was a rough month for the typical investor. Exclusive data from Openfolio shows 80 percent of investors lost money. The average decline was 2.3 percent.
BERMAN: I'm way below average.
ROMANS: Openfolio says political uncertainty and corporate earnings had investors on edge. As for the 20 percent of investors who did make money in October, here's the common denominator. They were three times more likely to own this stock, Netflix. It is up 21 percent, over the past four weeks.
All right. Peter Thiel is Donald Trump's most prominent backer in Silicon Valley. He's a billionaire, the PayPal founder. He made headlines for his speech at the Republican National Convention. Last month, he pledged to donate more than a million bucks to the Trump campaign.
He has been criticized by some of his peers for supporting Trump. You know, fellow billionaires Mark Zuckerberg and Jeff Bezos, they say different opinions are important. They don't support Donald Trump. Yesterday, Thiel said Donald Trump's agenda makes him the right choice.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PETER THIEL, BILLIONAIRE TECH ENTREPRENEUR: Just as much as it is about making America great, Trump's agenda is about making America a normal country. A normal country doesn't have a half trillion dollar trade deficit. A normal country doesn't fight five simultaneous undeclared wars. In a normal country, the government actually does its job.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROMANS: Thiel distanced himself from the Trump remarks about women calling those remarks clearly offensive and inappropriate. I will tell you, he is a contrarian, famous contrarian. He sees value sometimes where conventional wisdom doesn't. So, a lot of folks in Silicon Valley are saying, you know, this is just Peter Thiel being contrarian supporting Donal Trump. But that was a pretty impassioned plea. A lot of people are talking about that, that plea of support for Donald Trump yesterday.
ROMANS: All right. We have seven days to go until Election Day and a flurry of new developments overnight.
"NEW DAY" picks it all up right now.
TRUMP: How can Hillary manage this country when she can't even manage her e-mail.
CLINTON: I made a mistake. If they want to look at more e-mails, go ahead, look at them.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's impossible to view this a blatant double standard.
BERMAN: The controversial pro-Trump robocall.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I believe Evan is a closet homosexual.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's going to back fire.
TRUMP: She is a terrible example for my son. That I can tell you.
CLINTON: I have been fighting for families and underdogs my entire life, and I'm not stopping now.
ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning. Welcome to your NEW DAY. It is Tuesday, November 1st, 5:00 in the East.
A blatant double standard, that's what the Clinton campaign calls this FBI surprised announcement that it's reviewing more emails about Hillary Clinton. She says there is no case here. ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: And Donald Trump's campaign facing new
questions this morning about how he avoided paying hundred of millions of dollars in federal taxes for nearly two decades.
Also, there are multiple uncorroborated reports about his campaign's links to Russia. We are now just one week away from Election Day. We have it all covered for you and there's a lot.
So, let's begin with Phil Mattingly. He is live in Chappaqua, New York.
Good morning, Phil.
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Alisyn. Well, amid the firestorm launched by one letter to Capitol Hill, FBI investigators are now in the process at Quantico of starting to catalogue those e-mails that really kicked everything back up, kicked that firestorm back up.