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Trump Speaks Out Against Anti-Semitism; Trump Administration Announces Immigration Crackdown; Republicans Face Raucous Crowds At Town Halls; Milo Yiannopoulos Resigns From Breitbart; Riots Spark Immigration Debate In Sweden; Anti-Racism Job for Smertin; Bodies Of 74 Migrants Wash Up On Libyan Coast; Malaysia Asks To Question N. Korean Embassy Official; Trump Speaks Out Against Anti-Semitic Incidents; Hier Was Invited To Offer Prayer At Inauguration; Hier: Task Force Requested On Anti-Semitic Incidents; Trump Team Keeping His Golf Habits Under Wraps; Hong Kong's Vulnerable Domestic Workers. Aired 1-2a ET

Aired February 22, 2017 - 01:00   ET


[01:00:00] JOHN VAUSE, CNN NEWSROOM ANCHOR: Hello everybody, thanks for joining us. I'm John Vause, here in Los Angeles.

ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT AND ANCHOR: And I'm Isa Soares in London. Ahead this hour, more arrest and more deportations with the Trump administration start new immigration plan, does give one group a break.

VAUSE: Also ahead, Donald Trump speaks out against anti-Semitism still make critics claim it's too little too late.

SOARES: Also riots in the street, the Sweden's capital - the latest flash point in Europe immigrant crisis. A very warm welcome. Well, immigrant communities in the U.S. are in fear after major shift in American immigration policy. The Trump administration is allowing for more deportations of undocumented immigrants, it could get harder to get asylum. Thousands more border patrol agents will be hired, and immigration officers will have more authority to decide on the spot whom to arrest. One immigration policy remains the same though, that's the children of undocumented or documented immigrants known as dreamers, they still be protected. Take a listen.


SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: It's going to be as we talked about in the past: prioritize what we go after first, second, third. The President's made very clear - he understands the plight, as some of those individuals. He's got a big heart. He understands the impact it has on many families, on many communities. But we will continue to develop policies that will address that.


VAUSE: Well, for more; Democratic Strategist, Matthew Littman, joins us here in Los Angeles; and from San Diego, Trump supporter and Psychologist, Gina Loudon. Thank you both for coming back. So, Matt, the big fit to here, what message is now sending to the rest of the world with these new immigration laws?

MATTHEW LITTMAN, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, the immigration laws target Mexicans, people from Central America, and Muslims in the Middle East. Then so, the message is, don't come to the United States. I mean, part of the way that the United States succeeds versus every other country in the world, the way our economy keeps growing is that we bring in immigrants. And that's the way that the United States grows because we have a bigger workforce of people coming in, creating new jobs, bringing in new ideas, and we're telling them we don't want them. That's going to affect the United States economy for years to come. But also, Donald Trump has made some big promises to the people who voted for him, about growing the economy at about four percent this year. That's going to be impossible to do, if people don't want to come to the United States.

VAUSE: So, Gina, under these new guidelines, immigration agents can go up to, pretty much, anyone they want. I say, focus on undocumented moms, and dads, and their kids. Won't that making it easier for undocumented gang members, for drug traffickers, and other criminals to evade the law?

GINA LOUDON, RIGHT-WING CONSERVATIVE AUTHOR AND NEWS COMMENTATOR: Well, I think one important distinction that Matthew doesn't like to make very often, is that there's a difference between legal and illegal immigrants, and no one disagrees that we are a nation of immigrants. In fact, our President right now, is married to one. And I think that it's exceptional that President Trump has sent a message, loud and clear, to Americans that he's going to listen to them, and especially where children are concerned, he's going to have a lot of heart involved in his decision-making.

I think that people like Matthew, who've been stating that this was a big priority of this, might, if they're honest, admit that this is something that they should be celebrating. And I think another thing that's important to note here is that, he is targeting criminals. In his deportation, so far, President Trump - 75 percent of those he's deporting are criminals. Comparing that to the three million people that President Obama deported, only 50 percent of them were criminal. So, he's proving himself to keep his word. And I think people, like Matthew, should join me in being excited about this President who does indeed wants to make our country great again.

VAUSE: So, Matthew, how does this policy under Trump differ from the one under President Obama?

LITTMAN: Well, so, first of all, under President Obama - what Gina is saying is sort of true, 50 percent true. So, under President Obama, he was deporting criminals. Under Donald Trump, you can be accused of a crime, and be deported; you can have a traffic ticket, and be deported. This's a totally different thing. The other thing is, that Donald Trump - what we should be trying to do is find a way to get people -

LOUDON: That hasn't happened.

LITTMAN: What we should be trying to do is find a way to get people to citizenship, that's not we're doing. And I'm sure that Gina has heard, as all of us have heard, of the stories of kids in schools, who are incredibly frightened because they think they're going to go home, and their parents aren't going to be there. And so, the idea that we should be celebrating, this seems absolutely insane.

[01:05:00] VAUSE: Gina, I'll give you a chance to respond to that, but I want to bring this up to you, because you say it's all about prioritization. Does that then mean that, Guadalupe Garcia Del Rios, the mother of two who's living in Arizona, who was deported earlier this month. Is she considered a threat to National Security? Or is Democrat Senator Robert Menendez, right? When he said, "it is irresponsible to treat a hardened criminal the same as an immigrant mother with children for the purposes of deportation." So, which one is it?

LOUDON: Well, there're really sad fact. And this is not happy to any of us, but people break laws every day, that are parents. And so, if parents are going to choose to break laws, then they are going to be presenting a risk to their children from day one, and that doesn't make any of us very happy. And I totally agree with you, on that. We don't know the whole story on that particular story, the details are not completely out there, at least as far as I've heard yet, and I did look it up right before I came on you show tonight. None of us want to see children hurt by this.

I think President Trump has been very clear that that's a priority of his. And I think again, you know, we have to look at a country like Mexico, who willing to invest $50 million in attorneys to keep their own citizens in our country. For just a moment we might want to consider as if they're all such up standing citizens, why does that Mexico want to spend that $50 million bringing them there? Doing job training programs, helping these children out of whatever situation it is that made them want to come here in the first place. So, I think we need to ask some of those real common sense questions before we start looking at anecdotal situations that we don't have all the answers to yet.

LITTMAN: Let me just say that John, while we're trying to create this atmosphere of fear in the United States. Number of people crossing the border, is the lowest that it's been in 16 years. I mean, these are - were headed on to very low levels. So, they keep talking about this surge of immigrants crossing the border, there's no surge of immigrants crossing the border.

VAUSE: OK. Let's begin to sort out what has been going on around the country. We've had a lot of republicans heading home during the Congressional Recess and when they get to their home districts, they are being confronted by very unhappy voters. In the past couple of hours, there are at least four of these meetings taking place around the country. They're all packed out, not just with dozens but hundreds of people there complained everything from Obamacare, essentially, you know, plans to scrapping on not having a replacement, also about what President Trump is doing in a variety of areas.

Matt, we heard from the President who tweeted out basically, that the circle of angry crowds in home districts of some republicans are actually in numerous cases planned out by liberal activist, said. Is there a lesson here for the republicans, that the democrats didn't pick up in 2008 with the Tea Party movement?

LITTMAN: Well, I don't even know what he meant there, he say's so- called angry crowd. So, they - is he saying that they're not angry? Or they're not? Well, I can't figure out exactly what he means there. I will say, I mean, I think we see it, and I went to the rally in Los Angeles a few weeks ago, the women's march. There were 750 thousand people of that rally, there were millions of people marching that day. I think a lot of people have just been taken by surprise.

We have to keep in mind that Donald Trump got millions less votes than Hillary Clinton. He did not come in with any kind of mandate, he's operating with a mandate that's really based on a fear that doesn't exist for most of this country. People are furious and they're engaging their members of congress. I think they should, I think people should be protesting at every opportunity, because this government - Donald Trump does not represent them, and what this country is all about.

VAUSE: Gina, do you believe at the President that, the angry people at these town halls are mostly just liberal activist?

LOUDON: I believe that most of them are in fact paid to be there. Most of them when they are -

LITTMAN: That's ridiculous. What are you talking about?

LOUDON: interviewed about this - well it's true.

LITTMAN: They're not, it's not true. Have you gone to any of these town halls? And see anybody getting paid?

LOUDON: Matthew, I let you finish your sentences. Let me finish my sentences.


LOUDON: It is a proven fact that more than 70 percent those, who attend these particular rallies are paid by, you know, friends, operatives of the party. And I think it's unfair to the rest of the Democratic Party. But let me say this, I welcome peaceful protest. I, myself, have done, have engaged in peaceful protests. That's what America's all about. But here's the thing, when it gets to the violence, when it gets to the kind of incited hate that is coming onto this administration, like never before in our history. With crazy accusations being made about him, rather than a truly joining in together and trying to do something good for this country.

That's where I think - it just gets really sad. And if I were republican operative, I would hope it continues, because I can tell you that the people between New York and California, they do not understand the anger, and violence, and rage, of these planned, paid, protester. And they're going to turn right around in 2020, and do what they did in 2016 by a bigger landslide.

VAUSE: You're right.

[01:09:55] LITTMAN: And if I lose by a few million more votes than the three million they lost by this time. But let me also say that the people of these rallies are not paid. And when Gina talks about California and New York, we watched tonight in Iowa. As the citizens in Iowa rose up, and spoke to their members in congress about losing healthcare, they spoke about immigration, they spoke about the travel - the Muslim ban, I mean, people are angry. And this government is representing a very small angry faction of society, and not the majority of Americans. And people should be going, that's why more than 200 these town halls -

LOUDON: That's - you keep believing that.

LITTMAN: have been cancelled by these republicans, because they're scared to face their constituents who have honest criticisms.

LOUDON: And Matthew, all you have to do -- all you have to do Matthew, is look at a map of electoral votes and you can see that the entire center of the country - is red, the entire center. And thank God for our electoral college, or the big banks, and "Wall Street," and everything else would control the election, because it would all be decided in California and New York. If you keep California out of the mix, Donald Trump wins in a massive landslide. And you know this.

LITTMAN: All of the people on the "Wall Street" are in the Trump administration. They all work with Donald Trump. That's "Wall Street" south.

LOUDON: And as far as it being Iowa, Matthew, we all know that airplanes work really well, and those people were flow there by and more, nothing all of them.

LITTMAN: You said that there was none of that happening in the Mid- West.

VUASE: I don't think that includes that one, Gina. Anyway -

LITTMAN: You said it was only on the Coast, not in whole country.

VAUSE: I don't think we have proof of that though, and I don't think that they have put that in paper. I want to get very quickly to the final topic: Milo Yiannopoulos, in favor of many of over conservatives. He's not making any outrageous hateful comments, he's being fired from the ought right web site, Breitbart. After he appears to endorse pedophilia during the interview. This is what he said.


MILO YIANNOPOULOS, BREITBART SENIOR EDITOR: In a homosexual world, particularly, some of those relationships between younger boys and older men, the sort of coming of age relationships - the relationship in which those older men help young boys discover who they are.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It sounds like catholic priest molestation, to me. YIANNOPOULOS: And you know what? I'm grateful for father -


VAUSE: So, Matt, Yiannopoulos has himself with women, gays, blacks, Muslims, but for his supporters, right now, pedophilia? That was the bridge to far?

LITTMAN: Well, I was going to say, you know, racism, sexism, anti- Semitisms seems to be OK, with some members of the Republican Party and pedophilia is where they draw the line. OK. I mean, obviously, the fact that this guy speaks for any part of the Republican Party is absolutely ridiculous.

VAUSE: The last go to, Gina.

LOUDON: Well, I think it's been made clear that - I think we as an entire culture have to do more to protect our children, and I think that extends all the way down to pre-born children as well. And I think that the things that've happened of recent - will continue to be a conversation in our country, that I think we should have about protecting children. I think that that conversation is an important one.

VAUSE: It is, indeed. And at that we'll leave it. Gina Loudon, Matt Littman, again -

LITTMAN: Thanks.

VAUSE: Thank you both for being with us. Most appreciated.

LOUDON: Thanks.

SOARES: Now, Sweden is not an example that many people expect that President Trump to use in his immigration message. But he pointed to the Nordic nation as an example what happens when countries allowing migrants. Well, the next day, riot has clashed the police in a Stockholm suburb, known for its large immigrant population. For some, that's enough to prove Mr. Trump's point, but others say it's not that simple. Our Ivan Watson reports from Stockholm.


IVAN WATSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: From the U.S. President, a warning about immigration.

DONALD TRUMP, UNITED STATES PRESIDENT: Sweden, who would believe this? Sweden. They took in large numbers, they're having problems like they never thought possible.

WATSON: Nevertheless, President Trump's message does resonate with some political circles in Sweden.

MATTIAS KARLSSON, SWEDEN DEMOCRATIC PARTY: I'm very grateful to President Trump that he addressed this issue, it's very important to us here. WATSON: Mattias Karlsson, is a leader of the right-wing Sweden

democrats, the third largest party in parliament.

KARLSSON: I think Sweden is a good example to put forward as a bad example. If you don't control the borders, if you don't have a - a responsible refugee policy, you will get problems, and we have serious problems here in Sweden.

WATSON: Is it a - is it a crisis here?

KARLSSON: Yes. I would describe it as a crisis. We have seen serious problems with law and order.

WATSON: As evidence, Karlsson points to a riot that erupted in the Stockholm suburbs of Rinkeby, Monday night. A police spokesman says, officers fired at least two shots when dozens of rioters attacked police officers during the arrest of a crime suspect. Ten cars were torched in the unrest, and one police officer suffered bruised to the arm from a thrown object. Hours later, the scene in this largely immigrant community looked very different.

This is the center of Rinkeby. Now that were here, I'm going to be honest, as a first-time visitor it's hard to believe that less than 24 hours ago, this was the scene of a full-blown riot. More than a dozen police officers deployed in the central square, several shop windows were smashed, but families with small children appear to be going about their business as usual. Is Sweden in crisis right now?

[01:15:03] MAGNUS RANSTORP, SWEDISH SCHOLAR AND COUNTER-TERRORISM EXPERT: No it's not at all at a crisis. Look around, I mean, very calm, very quiet. Of course, though, I saw incidences that happened but the police are dealing with them.

[01:15:14] WATSON: Magnus Ranstorp is a counterterrorism expert at the Swedish National Defense College.

RANSTORP: I'm not denying that there are integration issues but what I think is wrong to do is to conflate immigration, crime and terrorism because those linkages are not that strong.

WATSON: During the peak of the European migrant crisis of 2015, more than 160,000 new arrivals crossed Sweden's borders. Sweden has since tightened border controls, reducing the flow of migrants by imposing temporary passport checks at the border.

In a four-year period when Sweden granted asylum to more than 100,000 refugees, crime grew by seven percent. Meanwhile, state figures show the Muslim immigrant community in Sweden is increasingly under attack with Islamophobic hate crimes jumping by nearly 90 percent.

Like much of the rest of Europe, this Scandinavian country is grappling with immigration, assimilation and the threat of Islamic extremist terrorism, very complicated challenges at the heart of a growing global-political debate. Ivan Watson, CNN, Stockholm.

(END VIDEOTAPE) VAUSE: Well, soon to come here, the U.S. President finally speaks out condemning away the anti-Semitic attacks. But why does it take so long? And was it too little too late?

SOARES: Plus, an undocumented immigrant in United States says she's scared even though she's protected from deportation, at least for now. We'll explain after the break.


CHRISTINA MACFARLANE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: I'm Christina Macfarlane with your CNN WORLD SPORT Headlines. It was goals galore in the Champion's League with an incredible 14 score in two games. Manchester City and Monaco each led twice but it was the home team who came out on top five straights. City's Sergio Aguero and Monaco's Radamel Falcao both scored twice in what was the highest scoring first leg in Champion's League history.

And while Bayer Leverkusen versus Atletico Madrid couldn't quite live out to that, there were still six goals scored in Germany. It was the wayside who came away with a healthy lead as the likes of Antoine Griezmann. Fernando Torres find Atletico to a 4-2 win.

Russia's Football Union have acquainted a new anti-racism star to tackle discrimination and racism within the game with just over a year to go until the 2018 World Cup. The newly appointed Alexei Smertin is a former Chelsea midfielder and could ready to be a controversial appointment due to his previous comments on the subject. On 2015, Smertin was criticized for this missing racism concerns saying to the BBC that there was no racism in Russia because racism doesn't exist.

The campaign group fair reported 92 instance of racism by Russian fans in and around stadiums last season. That's a look at your Sports Headlines. I'm Christina Macfarlane in London.

[01:20:44] VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. There is one group of illegal immigrants in the United States which will be spared, at least for now, from Donald Trump's crackdown. The so-called Dreamers, children brought into the country by their parents who know of no other life.

SOARES: But that doesn't stop the fear. Pamela Brown talks with one woman who says her life's in the President's hands now.


PAMELA BROWN, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: The Department of Homeland Security releasing new guidelines that could massively expand the number of undocumented immigrants detained or deported from the U.S. They brought in who ICE made target and expedite the removal of undocumented immigrants from the U.S.

SPICER: Everybody who is here illegally is subject to removal in any time. The priority that the President has laid forward and the priority that ICE is putting forward through DHS's guidance, is to make sure that the people who have committed a crime or pose a threat to our public safety are the priority of their efforts, first and foremost.

BROWN: Under President Obama, ICE focused on deportation in three categories- convicted criminals, public safety threats, and those who recently crossed the border illegally. Under the Trump Administration, those categories will be broadened out. Now, anyone who is even accused of a crime, such as a DUI is eligible for deportation. And a new memo is made clear, immigration agents now have broader discretion to decide who to round up.

CNN rode along with ICE agents in 2015 when they targeted an undocumented criminal at this auto shop in Chicago when another undocumented immigrant, working at the same shop took off running. He had no criminal background so ICE let him go.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good luck to you, man.

BROWN: But now, under the new guidelines, that same man could be detained and possibly deported.


Greisa Martinez was brought to the U.S. from Mexico 20 years ago. The White House says people like Martinez, known as dreamers, will still be protected under DACA for now.

DONALD TRUMP, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA PRESIDENT: They were brought here in such a way - it's a very, very tough subject. We even had a deal with DACA with heart.

BROWN: But Martinez says she's still unsure what her future holds in the U.S.

MARTINEZ: We're concerned about what Donald Trump means for our family. Will it mean that we'll be separated from our mother just like we were separated from my father nine years ago?

BROWN: Though there is also a certain program like Catch and Release, that was a program, where an undocumented immigrant was arrested, that person would then be released until the immigration proceeding which could sometimes be years. It also calls for expedited removal for those who have been in the United States for two years or less and makes it harder for asylum seekers to be in the U.S. while they await their proceedings. Pamela Brown, CNN, Washington.


SOARES: Let's get more on this. Joining me now is Brian Klaas, the Fellow in Comparative Politics, the London School of Economics. Brian, thank you very much for coming on the show. As you've heard in that Pamela Brown report, what were your fears? Not so much change in the law but the way the U.S. immigration law is actually in force. How do you see this new change?

BRIAN KLAAS, LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS, FELLOW IN COMPARATIVE POLITICS: I think this is going to tear apart the social fabric of United States. I think it's going to have neighbors turning against neighbors. I think the idea that law enforcement - local law enforcement will be involved in rounding people up potentially.

SOARES: What does that worry?>

KLAAS: Because that means that you can't trust the police if you need police help. If you're an undocumented immigrant and you see a crime being committed, can you call your local officer? No. Because if they come, they may well turn you over to ICE and end up deporting you. So, you know, you might also have neighbors accusing Hispanic people of being illegal. There may be false reporting. So, there's a whole bunch of turning against each other that we've seen throughout history. If you have deportation forces, people from the government rounding up people based on their country of origin. It hasn't gone well enough throughout history and I don't think it's going to go well this time either.

SOARES: And also it - beg the question, what constitutes the crime, surely.

KLAAS: Especially because accusations of crime will be sufficient for deportation now because that eliminates dues process for certain people and it also is a question where, are we going to be enforcing minor violations? If you have a traffic ticket, a parking ticket, will you be deported, families torn apart over this? These questions are ones that I think are very real and need to be answered by the Trump Administration.

SOARES: But also, surely, this atmosphere you're, you know, we're speaking of here, wouldn't that drive immigrants underground into going into hiding?

KLAAS: Absolutely. And I think that's something that's really dangerous because if an immigrant gets into a car accident, for example, they can't now be involved. There's going to be more hit and runs. Not to mention that all of the research we've seen shows that undocumented immigrants commit crimes at far lower rates than Americans because they are terrified of this. The last thing they want is to have - is to brush with the law. So, to paint them with this broad brush that the Trump Administration is saying that they're going to publish crimes committed by undocumented immigrants is a political tactic to scapegoat minority in the United States that is there illegally but it will be counterproductive in a way that will really hurt the social fabric of the United States.

[01:25:38] SOARES: Not just the social fabric but also potentially hurt the economy, Brian, because we know that a lot of these immigrant workers, they are the backbone of the U.S. economy. They do many jobs that many don't want to do.

KLAAS: That's right. There are two engines of the U.S. economy that will be hurt best. The first one is the fact that there's going to be a significant amount of loss of labor from undocumented immigrants that still holds that Americans don't want to fill. On the other hand, there's also going to be the loss of international tourism as Trump Administration policies are viewed as ugly to the rest of the world. The combination of this deportation force with the Executive Order Immigration Ban from those seven Muslim majority countries, is sufficient to have already driven down interest in tourism for the rest of the world.

There's one study that showed 17 percent drop in searches for international flights to the United States since Trump's inauguration. And that's going to hurt the wallets of ordinary Americans.

SOARES: And it might give even more expenses to U.S. debt because you've got 10,000 offices, according to what we've seen, being hired. And then of course there is the wall. So, who's going to pay for all this? Tax pay, U.S. Taxpayers?

KLAAS: One way or another, the U.S. taxpayer will pay for both the wall and for this force.

SOARES: Mexico's paying for the wall, remember?

KLAAS: Yes, right.

SOARES: So, it's going to be costly. Costly affair, isn't it?

KLAAS: It is and if they try to find a way to have Mexico pay for the wall through some sort of backfield measure, all that will do will end up hitting consumers harder because tear-ups end up hurting consumers by pushing prices higher up so ironically, Trump's base wind up paying up most for these programs.

SOARES: This, I mean, deportation is going to be a very visible issue for many Americans. Is the country ready for this? I mean, how do you think America will be viewed from here? You're based out here, your lecture here. How do you think that it will be viewed?

KLAAS: I think it's going to be viewed negatively. I think it's going to be viewed through the lens of the American government as now scapegoating individuals who live in the country for a very long time, who have built their families, and there'll be horrible images of families being torn apart with force by immigration enforcement officers. And I guarantee you that there will be many, many false reports of neighbors turning against each other, even legal immigrants or people who are United States citizens, being reported to the authorities simply because of their skin color. And that is a very ugly type of politics that we're going to see going forward because the Trump Administration wants to galvanize its base and this is very popular amongst the base.

SOARES: Perhaps the U.S. is not quite ready for this yet. Brian Klaas, thank you very much. John?

VAUSE: Well, Isa, we'll take a short break. Now, when we come back, we'll speak with the Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center about the President's comments on anti-Semitism and what needs to be done to sever ways of attacks on the Jewish community in the U.S.


[01:30:00] JOHN VAUSE, CNN NEWSROOM ANCHOR: Welcome back everybody. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM, I'm John Vause in Los Angeles. ISA SOARES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT AND ANCHOR: And I'm Isa

Soares in London. Here are the headlines for you this hour. Libyan officials say they expect more bodies to wash ashore along the country's northern coast. Rescue crews recovered the bodies of 74 African migrants on Monday. They believe the men drowned while crossing the Mediterranean Sea to get to Europe. A torn rubber dinghy was reported to be found nearby.

VAUSE: Malaysian police investigating the death of Kim Jong-nam. I want to question an official with the North Korean embassy as well as an airline worker, but they say Pyongyang is not cooperating. Kim Jong-un's half brother was killed at Kuala Lumpur Airport last week. Police say he was poisoned.

SOARES: The Trump administration is laying out its plan for aggressive immigration and the enforcement. That could expand the number of people detained, as well as the forces, the Department of Homeland Security says only criminals will be targeted. The field agents are expected to have broad latitude on who is being deported.

VAUSE: President Trump has been under great pressure to say something about a surge of anti-Semitism across the United States.

SOARES: Though he's deflected questions about it in the past, he finally spoke up on Tuesday. Sunlen Serfaty has all the details for you.


DONALD TRUMP, UNITED STATES PRESIDENT: The anti-Semitic threats targeting our Jewish community and community centers are horrible.

SUNLEN SERFATY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: President Trump for the first time is speaking out on the rise of anti-Semitic incidents plaguing the country.

TRUMP: And are painful and a very sad reminder of the work that still must be done to root out hate and prejudice and evil.

SERFATY: Since January, there has been an eruption of anti-Semitic incidents and threats across the country. Just today, a bomb threat led to the evacuation of the Jewish community center in La Jolla, California, bringing the total number of incidents nationwide since January to 70, affecting Jewish community centers in 27 states, and a rash of other targets, too, including damage at this historic Jewish cemetery in Missouri, a synagogue in Chicago earlier this month, and swastikas painted on this car in Boca Raton, Florida last week. While all this has been unfolding across the country, the president has remained silent.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Since your election campaign and even after your victory, we've seen a sharp rise in anti-Semitic - anti-Semitic incident across the United States.

SERFATY: Given two opportunities last week alone to denounce the rise in hate, he deflected both, switching the subject. TRUMP: Well, I just want to say that we are, you know, very honored by the victory that we had, 306 Electoral College votes.

SERFATY: And berating another reporter who asked the same question.

TRUMP: Quiet, quiet, quiet. See, he lied about who's going to get up and ask a very straight simple question.

SERFATY: Rather than issuing a swift condemnation of the threat.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, we are concerned about, and what we haven't really heard being address is an uptick in anti-Semitism.

SERFATY: Trump referenced his own views.

TRUMP: I am the least anti-Semitic person that you've ever seen in your entire life.

SERFATY: This was an issue that dogged him throughout the campaign. He was criticized for attacking his opponent using language invoking anti-Semitic scenes.

[01:35:05] TRUMP: In which Hillary Clinton meets in secret with international banks to plot the destruction of U.S. sovereignty in order to enrich these global financial powers.

SERFATY: Accused of peddling a stereotype when he told the Jewish Republican group ...

TRUMP: This room negotiates -- I want to -- perhaps more than any room I've ever spoken to.

SERFATY: Using anti-Semitic imagery, tweeting a graphic of a six- pointed star that looked like the Star of David, which he said in the aftermath was a sheriff's star, and not being forceful in his denunciation of the anti-Semitic backlash against a Jewish reporter.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN THE SITUATION ROOM HOST: -- follow these anti- Semitic -

TRUMP: Oh, I don't know about that. I don't know anything about that.


SERFATY: A criticism during the campaign leading his Orthodox Jewish son-in-law to write an op-ed in Trump's defense.

And the White House Press Secretary pushing back on all the criticism Trump has received as president, saying, "No matter how many times he addresses it, it's just not good enough." And groups like the Anti- Defamation League say, "No, it's not good enough to just speak out against anti-Semitism." They're still waiting to hear what the administration will do to address the threat in Jewish communities. Sunlen Serfaty, CNN Washington.


VAUSE: Joining us now for more on the president's remarks, condemning anti-Semitism, Rabbi Marvin Hier, dean and founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Rabbi, thanks for being with us. Did you find the President's belated remarks acceptable? Do they go far enoughyou're your liking?

MARVIN HIER, SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTER DEAN AND FOUNDER: Yes. Yes. I thought that today, he made a direct repudiation of anti-Semitism. I hope it'll be the beginning of other statements by the president as well, but I think there's no question that he took it on straightforward and was not ambiguous at all.

VAUSE: It took a while for the president to speak out. Any idea why?

HIER: Well, first of all, look, I'm always of the belief -- like I don't understand. If I were advising the president, I would have told him as soon as the first outbreak of anti-Semitism occurred. It was - it's his responsibility, I think, to make a statement on behalf of the American people. Having said that, let's point out that President Donald Trump is not an anti-Semite. He invited a rabbi, myself, to be present in inauguration, the first time since 1985, that hardly (INAUDIBLE) him to the alt-right or to the KKK or Neo-Nazis. And the question is, "Why would he do that?" And if he were an anti-Semite, it would be the worst move that he could possibly make, so I think that when people say that they're headed down the path that he's an anti-Semite, that is absolutely ridiculous.

VAUSE: Well, the president and his supporters to that point, they -- you know, they often highlight the fact that his daughter, Ivanka, his son-in-law are Jewish. Here's an exchange earlier on CNN between a Trump supporter, Kayleigh McEnany, and Steven Goldstein, he's from the Anne Frank Center. Listen to this.


KAYLEIGH MCENANY, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: (INAUDIBLE) so, you think the president does not like Jews and is prejudice against Jews. You think that about the President of the United States.



GOLDSTEIN: Wow is right, Kayleigh. Do you know why?

MCENANY: Does he hate his daughter? Does he hate his son (INAUDIBLE)

GOLDSTEIN: You know what, Kayleigh - you know what, Kayleigh, I am tired of commentators like you from the right trotting out his daughter, trotting out his son-in-law as talking points against the president's anti-Semitism. They are Jewish, but that is not a talking point against anti-Semitism, and that is a disgrace!.

MCENANY: Let's not (INAUDIBLE) for your statement. GOLDSTEIN: Have you - have you no -

MCENANY: Listen, you -

GOLDSTEIN: Have you no ethics than to invoke -- than to invoke people's religion as a talking point?


VAUSE: So, Rabbi, what's your reaction to that? You know, is the president using his daughter and his son-in-law and his supporters as simply talking points here?

HIER: No, that is - that is absolutely fabrication. Look, Donald Trump - first of all, let's point out Secretary Haley made a wonderful -- Ambassador Haley made a wonderful speech before the Security Council, one that we haven't heard in years, telling the Security Council, "Why is it that you talk about one country in the whole globe? Why don't you talk about the hatred of the Palestinian fanatics toward Israel, practicing anti-Semitism?" My point is, it was a remarkable speech. Does anyone ask, did she just give that speech without checking with her -- with the Secretary of State? Would the president not have any input in such a statement? And if the president had an input in such a statement, what does that tell us about Donald Trump? It tells us, "Look, he's made mistakes, he uses rhetoric that he shouldn't have used, but he's not an anti-Semite, he's a friend of the Jewish people, and a great friend of the State of Israel. Anti-Semite hate the State of Israel.

[01:40:07] VAUSE: Well, you know, the administration now has promised to take action in relation to all of these incidents of anti-Semitism around the country. Do you believe the president will through on that? And what sort of action should he take?

HIER: Well, we've written to the Attorney General, the Simon Wiesenthal Center to Attorney General Sessions, and we've asked them to create a task force. This has been going on a long time. There were no - nobody has identified who the culprits are. Are they homegrown, are we dealing with KKK, neo-Nazi types, are we dealing with foreigners who are making these calls for the Jewish Community Center? We've got to find out and we've asked the Attorney General to appoint the task force immediately.

VAUSE: So, I guess we'll see if they follow through. I mean, we're - actions often speak larger than words, I guess.

HIER: They certainly do.

VAUSE: OK. Rabbi, thank you so much for being with us. We appreciate it.

HIER: Thank you.

SOARES: Now, golf is often called a mental game, and aides to President Trump are playing their own minded games over their boss's favorite hobby. We'll explain next. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VAUSE: To Hong Kong now, where most the migrant workers are domestic helpers living and working in the homes of their employers. Many are isolated, they face a language barrier and know little about their rights and the law, and that makes them vulnerable to abuse.

SOARES: Our Alexandra Field tells a story of two women who say they were overworked and underpaid.


[01:44:52] ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Life in this shelter is simple, but better than the job that broke her. "I was in a lot of pain, I was very sad, I was lost, but I didn't have anyone to tell," she says. This woman from Sri Lanka is free now but the decision to stay in Hong Kong and fight for justice has also trapped her. She says, "They didn't care how I survive. They just took work out of me." She claims her old boss broke Hong Kong's employment laws for domestic workers, underpaying her, failing to feed her and overworking her, a story that's now a lesson for women like her, Hong Kong's foreign domestic workers.

TINA CHAN, STOP ANTI-TRAFFICKING ORGANIZATION PROJECT MANAGER: You know, she didn't know anybody. She didn't really speak English. She finally was able to meet somebody who told her that, you know, this is completely illegal, and that you need to get away because your employer is abusing you and exploiting you.

FIELD: Activists are working to educate the city's most at risk population for forced labor and human trafficking, domestic helpers and sex workers. Hong Kong law requires domestic workers to be paid at least a minimum of about $555 U.S. a month, and that they get at least a day off a week. Many don't know that.

CHAN: They don't realize they're being exploited or they are the victim.

FIELD: The government says it's taking more steps to protect domestic workers, including introducing a website, educating them on their rights, prosecuting and revoking licenses from employment agencies that break the rules, and jailing at least one employer for abuse. But activist argue without a dedicated anti-trafficking law, the government isn't providing the support victims need to take on abusive employers. A law requiring them to live with their employers means those who are abused can be left entirely isolated.

CHAN: The truth is that because victims of trafficking, they're so invisible. That you don't even get to see them, and even if you come across a victim of trafficking on the street, you don't see that there's a label on their forehead, saying that she's a victim.

FIELD: In 2016, in a report on human trafficking, the U.S. State Department with Hong Kong on a watch list, putting it on par with countries like Ghana, Saudi Arabia, and Afghanistan, saying that the government authorities' investigations were inadequate to the scale of the problem and citing that there is no specific criminal offense related to the crime.

Hong Kong's government responded, saying, "The findings of the report had displayed a total disregard of the continuous and strenuous efforts of our law enforcement agencies to tackle trafficking in persons. And that we cannot accept Hong Kong is the destination, transit and source territory for men, women and children subjected to sex trafficking and forced labor."

That activists estimate that around 29,500 people in Hong Kong, may be in some form of forced labor or exploitation.

A group of women from Madagascar, who say they are those victims, are also looking for justice. "I'm angry because they lied," she says. She was betrayed, she says, by an agency that sent her and others from Madagascar to Hong Kong, promising good domestic work and good pay. But she says they took most of her paycheck, leaving her with less than a quarter for wages Hong Kong law requires.

She tells us, "I'd like to go back to Madagascar and bring money back to my children when this is all over." But she knows the fight for the missing money will be long and nothing is certain. Alexandra Field, CNN, Hong Kong.


SOARES: Well, you are watching CNN. We'll be right back with more news after a short break.


[01:50:44] PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN METEOROLOGIST: (INAUDIBLE) CNN Meteorologist Pedram Javaheri CNN WEATHER WATCH. An incredible winter, the one currently in progress here, with record temperatures all over the place. We're going into the heart of February, of course, and into early March. And temps records expected over 40 cities on Wednesday across the United States, and some of the colder cities as well in the United States, across the Northern and Midwestern portion of the U.S., where temps could be a good 20 degrees above average for some, but you noticed to the south, the warms still feeling some weather. Some strong storms are on the Panhandle of Florida into parts of the State of Alabama, typically around Eastern State. There you could see the eastern corner of the states, some heavy rainfall expected and that has been really the theme around parts of the Western U.S. as well, with multiple storms coming in, the last of which we think will come in sometime over the next 24 to 36 hours, still leaving in some of the flood watches are on parts of Central California and Northern California over the next couple of days. I noticed some colder arable. There is some heavy snowfall across the higher elevations, but all the action can find out there towards the Western U.S. The temperatures on Wednesday (INAUDIBLE) with the mild readings in Chicago. Mid-May-like temperatures, can you believe it? Almost June-like temperatures in Chicago, getting up to 21 degrees. Incredible variance with what's happening across Southern Canada, where Winnipeg sits at around one degree or so. And you work your way down towards (INAUDIBLE) 27, Mexico City, thanks for tuning in as always, going for 24 with sunny skies and clear conditions across the South.

VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. The new U.S. President enjoys a round of golf. He owns more than a dozen courses and he's been playing on his weekend trips to Florida.

SOARES: Aides to Mr. Trump seemed to be trying to keep his hobby it seems on the racks. Our Randi Kaye looked into it.


TRUMP: He played more golf last year than Tiger Woods. Now, think of it, we don't have time for this. We don't have time for this. We have to work.

RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Then candidate Donald Trump, taking a few shots at President Barack Obama for playing golf.

TRUMP: And I won't be playing golf, instead, I'm going to see the people in Louisiana, who have been devastated by floods.

KAYE: But that was then. This is now.

As president, Donald Trump's visited two Florida golf courses he owns near Mar-a-Lago, nearly every weekend since taking office, playing six times so far.

Not that his aides want you to know that. They won't even say if President Trump actually played the courses. But social media shows he did play during most visits.

Just this past Sunday, the president heated up with professional golfer, Rory McIlroy, at Trump International. The golf blog, No Laying Up, posted this picture from Clear Sports of Mcllroy with the president and their foursome at Trump International golf course. Mcllroy told the blog, "The president played 18 holes and shot around 80. 8 strokes above par."

While Mr. Trump is quick to brag about his golf skills --

TRUMP: Those hands can hit a golf ball 285 yards.

KAYE: His golf game seems to be a "cloak and dagger" operation. A White House spokeswoman told reporters Sunday that the president played a couple of holes. Then, after learning that Mcllroy had shared the president played 18, the spokeswoman explained that the president intended to play a few holes and decided to play longer. She was quick to note that he had a full day of work afterwards.

Unlike Trump's team, Obama's aides allowed cameras to show them on the links and told reporters who we played with. Thanks to this tweet from the president, we know when Mr. Trump played with Japan's Prime Minister earlier this month, they were also joined by professional golfer, Ernie Els.

TRUMP: It's great to play golf but play golf with heads of countries and -- KAYE: The president leveled some harsh tweets over the years. Like

this one, suggesting President Obama was out golfing while the TSA was falling apart. Mr. Trump even offered President Obama free lifetime golf at any of his courses if he would just resign. But President Obama always said he golf to relax. I habit supported by another president who took heat for golfing during wartime.

[01:55:08] GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I know the pressures of the job, and to be able to get outside and play golf with some of your pals, is important for the president.

KAYE: Every stroke counts in golf. So, let's take a look at the score. Mr. Obama didn't play his first round of golf as president until more than three months into his term. He reportedly played 333 rounds of golf in office. Far less than Woodrow Wilson's estimated 1200 rounds. So President Trump has some catching up to do. Randi Kaye, CNN New York.


VAUSE: ECOL, apparently, they've been a little bit dodgy on the golf front. Trump claims of a three handicap. There are those who say he is a world class golf cheat.

SOARES: But he's got plenty of time. Plenty of time to show -- he's definitely getting a lot of stick for (INAUDIBLE) isn't he?

VAUSE: Yes, well, a full time on the golf course is less time in the Oval Office, I guess. OK. You've been watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause in Los Angeles.

SOARES: I'm Isa Soares in London. We'll be back with more news after a short break. You stay right there.


VAUSE: U.S. President Donald Trump finally condemns anti-Semitism after a wave of threats -