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WH: Trump To Move Forward With Voter Probe; Police Corporal Thankful After Shooting; Sean Spicer's New Role As WH Press Secretary. Aired 7:30-8a ET

Aired January 27, 2017 - 07:30   ET



[07:33:18] CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: All right. So, we just saw the root of what might be fueling our president's belief that he was, you know, cheated out of the popular vote. That's one issue that the president keeps putting out here but there's a lot of foreign policy in play as well and a record number of early executive orders.

So, let's get some perspective on the state of play. We got Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger. He's joining us from Philadelphia, the sight of this week's GOP retreat. Good to have you congressman. Welcome to the party. How did it go in Philadelphia?

ADAM KINZINGER, (R) ILLINOIS: Well, it was good. It was an opportunity for, you know, we do this every year. But -- I mean, as somebody that's been in this job for 7 years. First time we have a Republican president that comes out and visits, you know, the Republican House or Republican Senate. And it's just kind of a moment to touch gloves and say, "Hey, here's kind of the plan we have for the next 100 and 200 days and we move forward."

You know, we all know that a 200 day plan or a 100 plan doesn't necessarily always look the same in 100 days. But, I mean, it just get in our minds together and figuring out where to go from here is -- was good. So, it was a good time.

CUOMO: Now, did that this Michigan has come up what you were just hearing with me? With the man that twitted out that he could prove 3 million people voted illegally and he seems insistent that his process of checking his own conclusion isn't over. And he won't offer me the proof and along we give it to everybody else.

I have to tell you, his numbers do sound a lot, both in quantity and in timing to when the president of the United States started coming out with his similar feelings. What do you think of that?

KINZINGER: So, I think -- this basically undermines the idea of an election. This undermines the constitution. I think, you know, just as I was upset about the Russian hacking for instance because it's an attack on the election system of our constitution. I don't like this because what this does without proof, if you really believe there are 3 to 5 million illegal votes. Please share that proof. Show us how.

[07:35:12] Because when you just attack it and say, well, I'll show you proof eventually or you say, "You know, hey look, just trust me on this one." You get some people that believe it because you have confirmation by us on either way. Some people that believe it because it's seems right and some people that don't. But at the end of the day you have to show proof of that. You have to show --

CUOMO: Right.

KINZINGER: -- a wider undermining the constitution of United State to say it. So, if it's true, I don't necessarily believe it obviously. But if it's true please come out, you're a prior guess. I would say just show us the proof --

CUOMO: Right.

KINZINGER: -- before you meet the accusation. That's important.

CUOMO: I asked many times. But, you know, you just mentioned two things, the Russian hacks and what they meant and the entire intelligence community saying it happened. And this which there's no proof happened. And the president of the United States is on the wrong side of both of those conclusions.

He didn't want to accept, and sheltered Russia from responsibility. And he wants to accept that there was voter fraud even though there's no basis for belief in it. He's in your party. What does that make you feel about the president?

KINZINGER: Well, it's disappointing because to me, again, you know, I remember as a kid, my parents would talk to me about, you know, what is relative truth versus actual truth. And just, you know, standing for right. And I think it comes to both parties, you know, whether you're on the left or whether you're in the right or in the middle.

Its saying look, we need to accept facts as facts. You know, whether its facts that don't necessarily agree with my side of the argument or whether there are facts that do. Because when you start saying, hey, facts are only facts of this something I agree with. That's when it gets really dangerous.

And so, you know, as Republican, I want to see a constitution and a election system that's protective. That's protected the hacking from outside interference. It's protected against the illegal votes, but also is protected against accusations and illegal roots if in fact it didn't have happened.


KINZINGER: So, you know, look, looking forward and going forward, I'm going to continue to challenge you it's because I think it's the right thing to do to stand strong on the truth.

CUOMO: Now, look, we're on it. That's what we are in the fact checking business of these days. That's what we do pretty much to the exclusion of anything else and with good reason.

Mexico, the meeting being canceled, a potential tax of 20 percent being offered up by the administration whether or not he'd need you to approve that, right, because there are certain rules by which we levy those types of things as tariff or tax then they back off. Now, the Mexican president won't come. Now, it's seems NAFTA is going to be gone. How do you feel about these developments? Is this good foreign policy?

KINZINGER: I get slightly uncomfortable with it because again, you know, I believe foreign policy is something that needs to be above twitter, above kind of being fought in the public sphere. At the same time though, I do believe that, you know, if we could advance to whenever this whole thing is finished.

I think looking forward, you're going to see, you know, Mexico would probably get something and whatever renegotiated NAFTA looks like the United States would get something. Both sides can kind of declare victory. Have something that benefits and then, go home.

So, you know, I don't think the cancelling of the meeting is really going to be a big deal. It's just kind posturing on both sides, because frankly the United States needs Mexico and Canada. They are biggest exporting partners and they need us. So, I think at the end of the day if this comes out correctly, it's just kind of an interesting process to watch this happen for sure.

CUOMO: Adam Kinzinger, you could not be in the people's service at a more interesting or important time. You are always welcome on the show to talk about what matters to your constituency and the country at large. Thank you for joining us on "NEW DAY" today.

KINZINGER: Be back thanks.

CUOMO: All right, Poppy.

POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: Interesting indeed. Guys, thank you very much for that.

Coming up next for us on "NEW DAY", President Trump's first week in office marked with a flurry of executive actions and some very controversial diplomatic moves and fleets. We'll go through all of it this Friday morning with Michael Smerconish and Carl Bernstein in CNN.


[07:42:22] CUOMO: So who do you turn to in a time of this kind of political upheaval when you have somebody making claims about the legitimacy of your democracy, and yet their analysis and their basis for that reporting seems sketchy. Carl Bernstein, that's who CNN Political Commentator and we have Michael Smerconish, host of CNN's Smerconish. And tonight, Michael is doing us all a favor. He is hosting a CNN primetime special on President Trump's first week in office because Michael, your assessment is we just lived through a week. We make it through today.


CUOMO: That may be more and different in ways than you've seen in many years, true?

MICHAEL SMERCONISH, CNN HOST, "SMERCONISH": I've been paying attention for three decades close attention. I think it was arguably the most tumultuous week of American politics that I've ever witnessed. And what's interesting to me is that in one silo it's a blank show. It's a guy who is arguing about crowd size. It's a guy who gave an inappropriate speech at the CIA. It's somebody whose activities were so bad that the Mexican President cancelled on him.

But to Poppy's trip to Kentucky, there's a different silo out there. And he is doing tremendous. He's delivering on absolutely everything he promised during the campaign. He's already undercut of Affordable Care Act. TPP is dead, NAFTA is on the ropes. The wall is getting built, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. And there are these competing views of what has just transpired.

HARLOW: And at the same time, Carl Bernstein, he is bringing in -- he is the one pushing the question of the legitimacy of the election in the White House. And he might say, we we're not talking about the 2016 election. Necessarily this is a bigger picture about, you know, preserving American democracy et cetera. You just heard the interview that Chris did with the man who claims to have proof but would not present it. What are Americans supposed to do with that this morning?

CARL BERNSTEIN, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I believe where you had just had on you air one man who has made a wild assertion, who will not show the evidence he has based it on, who is talking about algorithms that only he knows about. And that the President of the United States some how either by inference or somebody showed him the supposed data or this guy's information has run with it. It's just like the birther claims that Donald Trump asserted over and over and over.

There is no known basis of fact. It is in the realm of lying. Absent any proof by this one person and it's extraordinary that the country can get taken on a ride as it did with birtherism by this kind of assertion.

[07:45:07] And President of the United States in his first week, we have seen over and over and over again a pathology of lying. And that is what is so disturbing and the people that you and Michael are talking about these wonderful people that are partly responsible and I mean that.


BERNSTEIN: For Donald Trump's victory. I suspect that they're not immune to the truth either.

HARLOW: That's direct.

BERNSTEIN: And at sooner or later, they are going to look at an awful lot of what has being said by the President and his surrogates and say, you know, this is not true. We voted for him, we agree with his principles but we don't put up with lying.

HARLOW: Well act --

BERNSTEIN: And I think that's where we're heading.

HARLOW: Actually every, guys, every person I interviewed in Kentucky this week I asked them of yesterdays interview what do you make of this voter fraud claims to a person, except for one. They said we wish he wasn't talking about this and this are huge --

BERNSTEIN: That's my point.

HARLOW: But Michael Smerconish, the issue, you know, my mother always taught me, Poppy consider the source. But when the source is the President, that puts the American people in a tough position, right. When the President asserts this and you've got people who have done everything on him. That changes the game. Then the guess for example that we just had on who kept saying to Chris why I'm a volunteer, why I'm a volunteer.

SMERCONISH: Right, well, that Chris -- the guess that Chris -- let's be fair. The guess that Chris has had on and Chris grilled him appropriately had nothing. And David Becker is the guy who from the Pew Charitable Trusts look five years ago at this issue. It was not a survey of voter fraud. It was a survey of voter registration lists and the way in which the list are not always up to date.

As witness by the fact that some people serving Donald Trump are registered to vote in two states. But it doesn't they voted twice and that's what the President has conflated. But, you know, it requires a little bit of read in. It requires a little bit of attention and unfortunately some folks attention span is very limited, and they believe what they want to believe regardless of what the facts are.

CUOMO: Right. Now, there's one --


CUOMO: But I want to give you some context for something then you can go on.

BERNSTEIN: Well, want to go to what Poppy said for one second --

CUOMO: Go ahead.

BERNSTEIN: -- really important that if one of the people in this country do if the President of the United States says it. Here is the alternative universe we are now in. The President of the United States said that he was going to show us his taxes. He said it throughout his campaign, his tax returns. Now, he has told us he is not. It was a lie. This is the problem. We have now had in the first week of the presidency a series of untruths, falsehoods, have so many anchor people, have so many real reporters have said, and the enemy here is not the opposition media as Steve Bannon would have it. The enemy here is the truth that the opposition is not the media.

CUOMO: Right.

BERNSTEIN: The opposition is becoming the truth. That is a very dangerous cultural fact.

CUOMO: Here's -- I'll direct it to you now Michael based on Carl's point. There is a good game of us versus them being played by the administration right now. And they're doing a good job with it. They're using all of the different lever, they're using their bully band and they come out and yell at the press even though he was a member of the media.

But I'll tell you something, Carl and I live out on the east end of Long Island. That is Trump's land. He crushed the county that we live in. He crushed the county that adjacent to it as well. And my guys don't like seeing their world of foreign policy play out on Twitter. They don't like their President taking up time with things that can't be shown. They don't like the media being told to shut up just for the sake of power. They don't want to see the media running in the wrong direction either. The game of us versus them. What's your guess about how it plays out long-term?

SMERCONISH: I'm a little more pessimistic than you are because I believe that this is not a reason phenomena and that the seeds have been sown over the last three decades by right wing, talk radio and a certain cable station to distrust the media. And he is now just reaping the reward of distrust that has been sown by countless individuals who have that stirred the pot for ratings, for clicks and for eye balls.

And there's a certain segment it's not too large but they're hardcore that loves exactly what he is saying about the media. The irony of Bannon's comment to the New York Times, I'm not surprised that he believes it. I'm surprised that he said it. And what he was describing was exactly the function that Breitbart has played for the last couple of years.

HARLOW: Guys. Gentlemen thank you so much. I could talk about this all morning but we have a lot to get to. Michael, looking forward to the special tonight, thank you. Carl Bernstein, thank you. Again, on that special edition, Smerconish.

The first week of the Trump presidency in primetime tonight 9:00 p.m., eastern only right here.

[07:50:09] CUOMO: President Trump's press secretary is Sean Spicer, and he is in the spotlight. You know, he is not new to the world of politics. He is known and respected by many. He has a new role. How he got there and how he's doing next.


HARLOW: It took only seconds for the life of a police corporal in Boise do forever change. He was left paralyzed after a suspect on the run shot him several times still resilience, never wavered. Our Ana Cabrera has the story of how he went beyond the call of duty.


ANA CABRERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: To a Corporal Kevin Holtry, every breath, every movement is a blessing.

KEVIN HOLTRY, BOISE POLICE DEPARTMENT: I kind of approach that this as a little bit of an adventure.

CABRERA: This new adventure began back in November, Holtry, a 17-year veteran of the Boise Police Department was searching for a suspect involved in a shooting and carjacking.

HOLTRY: He was concealed and I was the first guy that really came into contact and ended up being just a few feet from him.

CABRERA: He had no time to react.

HOLTRY: I got shot in the femur, the hip, the stomach. And he was so low that they went under my vest. I knew I was paralyzed I mean immediately.

CABRERA: And as Holtry lay helpless, shot five times, the suspect kept firing, hitting fellow officer corporal Chris Davis who survived, and fatally wounding police K-9 Jardo, who Holtry calls as hero for jumping on the shooter, distracting him just long enough.

HOLTRY: He saved my life without a doubt.

CABRERA: After two months in the hospital and dozens of procedures, Holtry continues his recovery at Craig hospital in Colorado, which specializes in brain and spinal cord injuries.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We'll treat you this way. OK. Ready?

CABRERA: His days are full of grueling physical therapy.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And just put it straight up.

CABRERA: His left leg amputated because of infection, a rod holding his right leg together. He has no feeling from the waist down, except when this happens, reoccurring nerve spasms.

HOLTRY: I mean that's super painful. And it goes right where I got a shot and it kind of goes right around into me growing. And it's really the only spot there --


HOLTRY: Yeah. Ouch. So it got understatement of the year.

CABRERA: Humor still intact even in the throes of adversity. This military vet and father of two is a warrior in mind and body, facing an uncertain future unafraid.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That was excellent.

[07:55:15] CABRERA: Do you think you'll ever walk again?

HOLTRY: Who knows? Nobody knows. I hope one day maybe I can at least put a uniform on one last time. And that really bothers me that I may not be able to, but at least one last time.

CABRERA: Ana Cabrera, CNN, Denver.


CUOMO: Beyond the call of duty. We see it again and again.

President Trump's Chief Strategist Steve Bannon blasting the media in a new interview repeatedly calling on the press as the "Opposition Party" telling them to shut up, those words come after a rocky start for the Trump administration's press operation in the person of Sean Spicer. CNN's Chief Political Correspondent Dana Bash takes a closer look who is Sean Spicer.


DANA BASH, CNN CHIF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Sean Spicer is now one of the most visible people in the world.

SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Thanks for coming to our first official briefing.

BASH: White House spokesman is always one of the hardest jobs in Washington. But speaking for president Trump takes hard to a whole new level.

BASH: What evidence do you have of widespread voter fraud in this election if that's the case?

SPICER: The president does believe that. He has stated that before --

BASH: Spicer spent two decades in Washington working up to this. The naval officer who was still an active reservist was a press secretary for several GOP congressmen and eventually to Republican National Committee.

BRAD WOODHOUSE, FMR. DNC SPOKESMAN: You're not draining the swamp with him. I mean, he's swampy. He's been around in D.C., as a lot of us have for a long time.

BASH: Brad Woodhouse was a DNC spokesman while Spicer was at the RNC. They did battle but also did good, making bets for charity.

WOODHOUSE: He's a good egg. He's someone who I think is a really decent and good person. You envy somebody in that role.

BASH: Why?

WOODHOUSE: Well, I mean, you know, there are a few of us that have been in this business and say, you know, I wouldn't want to -- that I would really like to do that. I'd like to be, you know, White House press secretary.

BASH: Spicer's friends tells CNN being White House spokesman is his dream come true. Yet for many, his first full day was more like a nightmare.

SPICER: There's been a lot of talk in the media about the responsibility to hold Donald Trump accountable. And I'm here to tell you that it goes two ways.

BASH: A hastily arranged hyper Saturday statement on inaugural crowd a direct order from the furious new president riddled with factual errors.

SPICER: This was the first time in our nation's history that floor coverings have been used to protect the grass in the mall.

BASH: After getting pounded a calmer, well coiffed Spicer came back looking for a do-over.

SPICER: There are certain things that we may miss -- we may not fully understand when we come out. But our intention is never to lie to you.

BASH: At the RNC during the GOP primaries, Spicer publicly criticized candidate Trump.

SPICER: As far as painting Mexican-Americans with that kind of a brush, I think that's probably something that is not helpful to the cause.

BASH: That changed when Trump became GOP nominee. And when he won in November, Spicer, with the help of long time boss and the White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus began lobbying to be a presidential spokesman, coming right back to work as transition spokesman after his father passed away. Which sources say showed Trump how much Spicer wanted the job.

Because he was not an early loyalist, at times, Spicer appears to go out of his way to prove his medal to his boss.

SPCIER: The report is not an intelligence report plain and simple.

BASH: He hasn't changed an odd habit. Pragmatically chewing orbit cinnamon gum and swallowing it, multiple packs a day. Those who have long known the native Rhode Islander say he may be ambitious and at times territorial, but his wife and two children always come first along with his country.

SPICER: One thing about him is he's a true patriot. And he'll get his temperament straight and he'll focus on the right priorities.

BASH: Dana Bash, CNN, Washington.


HARLOW: Cuomo, we found someone else who chews their gum and swallows it as have been you.

CUOMO: How funny that the level of examination you get when you get into this business of politics that, you know, they know that about him now. Like that's one of the things you'll know about the new press secretary. But we wish him well. Because at the end of the day, it's all about you getting the best information you can from the people who are helping to control what matters in your life.

HARLOW: We rely on him for answers to our questions.

CUOMO: Heavily so, heavily so. There is a lot of news for you. There's an executive orders coming out. We are told that you're going to want to know about it. Let's get to it.


DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT-ELECT: The president of Mexico and myself have agreed to cancel our planned meeting.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We simply cannot accept --

TRUMP: When that comes through the border, it's going to be heavily taxed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're going to slap 20 percent on Mexico?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At the end of the day, American workers suffer.

TRUMP: I don't know who but I understand we will be having a discussion soon.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to see unconventional activities like tweets. That's just something that we're all going to have to get used to.

TRUMP: The media is very dishonest. I've been saying that it say it opened.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Bannon, we're not shutting our mouth. You cannot intimidate us.


[08:00:09] CUOMO: David Kurgan intimidated me there. Did you see that --

HARLOW: Right now.

[CUOMO: Scary look in his eye. Good morning. Welcome to your "NEW DAY". Alisyn is up. Our friend Poppy Harlow --