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Lawmakers Call for Proof of Wiretap Claims; New Travel Ban; Trump's Handling of the Economy; Trump's Economic Vision; Explicit Photos of Female Marines Found Online; Aired 9:30-10a

Aired March 6, 2017 - 09:30   ET


[09:30:00] CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN MONEY CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Legislative agenda. Every time, you guys, he gets off that and he gets sidetracked, you start to see a little nervousness in the markets. Overall, they still think they're going to get what they want, which is fatter bottom lines, quite frankly, but the timeline of that is what they're really concerned about. So I think that you'll see pauses, honestly, in the big rally whenever they're off message here in Washington.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: That's a little bit of a lower opening, you know, 71 points off the bat right now seconds in, continuing to drop.

Christine Romans talking about old bulls, one of her favorite subjects. Thanks so much, Christine.

Good morning, everyone. I'm John Berman.

POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Poppy Harlow. So glad you're with us.

Lawmakers calling for proof as President Trump presses forward with his claim that former President Obama, quote, "wiretapped" him before the election. He, of course, made that claim without providing any evidence.


REP. JASON CHAFFETZ (R), CHAIRMAN, OVERSIGHT & GOVT. REFORM COMMITTEE: It's a very serious allegation. The president has at his fingertips tens of billions of dollars in intelligence apparatus. I've got to believe - I think he might have something there. But, if not, we're going to find out.

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), MINORITY LEADER: It's called a wrap-up smear. You make up something, and then you have the press write about it. It's a tool of an authoritarian.

SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: I'm not sure what it is he i's talking about. Perhaps the president has information that is not yet available to us or to the public.


BERMAN: All right, joining us now, Democratic Congressman Ro Khanna of California, came all the way east just to meet with us today. We appreciate it very much, Ro.

REP. RO KHANNA (D), BUDGET & ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE: Thank you for having me on.

BERMAN: All right, extraordinary times. You have the current president, the 45th president of the United States, saying the his predecessor, the 44th president of the United States, ordered wiretaps on his office. No evidence. Your reaction?

KHANNA: Well, it's patently false. James Clapper came out and said that didn't happen. The FBI chief said it didn't happen. And this president has been the distractor in chief. He puts these sensational things out here to distract from the real issues.

HARLOW: The other thing that the former director of national intelligence, Clapper, said in that interview on "Meet the Press" yesterday was that there was no collusion found between the Trump campaign and Russia. So that brings to the broader issue here of the investigation that you and fellow Democrats are pushing. What are you investigating? What is the crime on behalf of the Trump camp if Clapper, who oversaw all the intelligence agencies, said no collusion?

KHANNA: Well, the investigation, I don't think, should be about the president. The investigation needs to be about Russia, China, North Korea, countries interfering in our democratic process. And it ought not to make conclusions about what the president may or may not have done and it ought to be a bipartisan -

HARLOW: But did that strike you when Clapper said that?

KHANNA: I think it's a fact that ought to be considered. And we ought not to prejudge it. But we ought to have a broad, independent investigation. Even the president is calling for an investigation that looks at this in a bipartisan way, that doesn't just single out Russia or Trump, but looks at Russia, North Carolina, China's interference in our democratic process and all Americans should be for that. I'm not going to prejudge the facts. We just need the facts to come out.

BERMAN: You said the president's a distracter in chief. What's he distracting from?

KHANNA: Well, he's distracting from an agenda of taking away environmental regulations in clean air and clean water, possibly taking millions of people off of health care. Those are the issues we ought to be talking about, how are folks going to get health care, clean air and clean water, dealing with climate change, stagnant wages. I mean that was what this election was about, millions of people who don't have a decent wage. And yet we're talking about the latest sensational headline he puts out there. In the meantime, he's appointed some folks who are dismantling regulations and issues that we've ben - had a consensus on for years.

HARLOW: But that is what he said he would the - I mean the whole - he's doing exactly what he ran on. I hear your point. But I would also say that this was expected by those who voted for him. We want to get your take on the travel ban. The revised executive

order expected to come out today, could be any moment, could be this hour. We've learned that Iraq has been taken off the list of these seven countries after very heavy lobbying from the Iraqi government, phone calls between the president of Iraq - the prime minister of Iraq and the president of the United States, et cetera. Does that make you more comfortable that Iraq has been taken off, someone who we're fighting this war against ISIS with? Is this something that you think you could live with perhaps a bit more now, granted we haven't seen the details?

KHANNA: I don't think so. I haven't seen the details. But that actually shows how arbitrary this process is, that if one leader can lobby the president to take their country off, why are other countries not included and how are these countries selected? Plus, coming from Silicon Valley, where extraordinary diversity has led to the success of Apple, and Google, Intel, that's really what makes America so competitive, I'm concerned about a signal that we don't want people from the rest of the world to come here.

And, finally, I'm really concerned about the constitutional issues. And we saw a federal judge strike the first order down. Let's see if this one is constitutional. I doubt it would be.

[09:35:08] BERMAN: Well, if he takes the visa holders out, you know, it may be something that a judge would look differently upon.

I want to get back to distracter-in-chief thing, because you were saying the president's actions and his Twitter account distracts from his agenda. This White House would say its agenda is jobs.


BERMAN: And the economy. And we have a poll out just this morning which says that the number one issue of most Americans is the economy.


BERMAN: And on the economy, you know, the majority of Americans think he's doing pretty well. He's up to 55 percent approval on handling the economy, and that's growing right now. So, you know, if he's as awful as you say on these issues, why do Americans seem to like it?

KHANNA: Well, I think the question is, what is he doing for the middle class and for working families? Yes, the stock market is up, but have we seen an increase in wages that have been stagnant? Have -

HARLOW: But the sentiment is there. John's point is the sentiment is there. They feel better under him.

KHANNA: Well, I think they - it's two months in. Let's evaluate based on metrics a year or two years in. All of his policies are geared towards helping the very rich, but they - he hasn't done anything in terms of a policy for the middle class. He hasn't talked about job training. Let me give you a concrete example. I'm going to Appalachia, part of

the country that voted for him, meeting with Hal Rogers (ph), a Republican. They have a program there that is teaching coal miner kids about IOS software and Android software, creating 40 jobs, possibly hundreds of jobs. That program is funded by the Appalachian Regional Economic Commission. He hasn't talked about investing in the job training and skills for the jobs of the future. And that's what I'd like to see from the president, not just a focus on Wall Street and the stock market, but a focus on the folks who are left behind, many of whom voted for him.

BERMAN: His focus hasn't just been on Wall Street, to be fair. He's been talking a lot about manufacturing, you know, a lot about - about some of these jobs in just the places you're talking about.

HARLOW: I think the difference is - and we're going to talk about that more in the next segment is, that he's talking about bringing those coal jobs back. Others say that's not possible.

BERMAN: Right.

HARLOW: You have to teach them coding, et cetera.

Thank you. It's nice to have you here.

KHANNA: Thank you. Great. Thank you.

BERMAN: Ro Khanna, thank you for being here.

HARLOW: All right, still to come for us -

BERMAN: President Trump winning over voters - we were just talking about it - when it comes to the economy. So why then, though, does more than 200 economists say that his policies are losing?

HARLOW: Also the Navy trying to find out this morning who launched a secret FaceBook group that showed photos of nude female Marines posted, of course, without their consent. We'll bring you the latest on that ahead.


[09:41:47] BERMAN: All right, we have some breaking news. An 11:30 event with the secretary of state, the secretary of Homeland Security and the attorney general. They will be talking -


BERMAN: About the president's new revised travel ban. Now it's possible the president signs it prior to that. It's possible we get details what's in it prior to that. We will bring that to you as soon as it happens. But 11:30, at least, we are getting a bit of a speech from those secretaries. So stand by.

HARLOW: And we've learned that they've taken Iraq off the list.


HARLOW: But this is not a press conference, so they're not going to be taking any questions.

BERMAN: Correct. More details to come.

In the meantime, we have a brand new CNN/ORC poll out just this morning. Among other things, it lists the number one issue that is most important to most Americans, survey says, the economy. And 55 percent of those polled say they approved at how the president is handling the economy. And that number is growing.

HARLOW: Fifty-five percent, exactly. So why do more than 200 economists then feel that the president is going to drive this country further into debt and that some of his policies, namely immigration, not great for the economy?

Let's discuss with Austan Goolsbee, former economic adviser to Hillary Clinton and the former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under President Obama, and Stephen Moore, CNN senior economists analyst and distinguished visiting fellow at the Heritage Foundation. He was a senior economic adviser to the Trump campaign.

Gentlemen, nice to have you both here.

And, Austin, let me begin with you. A record high for the stock market last week. The Dow crossed 21,000. You saw in our polling how people are feeling about the economy and this president. Any reason to think this market may turn sour?

AUSTAN GOOLSBEE, FORMER ECONOMIC ADVISER TO HILLARY CLINTON: Well, look, it's been a seven-year bull market. The market is up 225 percent or more. Hopefully not, that the - the - you know, you want the stock market to do well. It's not a measure - it's not a direct measure of the economy, but it's been a seven-year bull market and - and I think that will continue. Donald Trump's been in charge for one-fifteenth of that. And, you know, as I say, he's - kind of seems like the backup quarterback who came in at the end of the game and says, I won the game.

BERMAN: Tom Brady was a backup quarterback at one point, Austan Goolsbee. He did come in to replace Drew Bledsoe. So in defense of backup quarterbacks -

GOOLSBEE: That's true. (INAUDIBLE) -

HARLOW: And he did win the game.

BERMAN: And won a few after that.

But, Stephen Moore, after a weekend like this, which I would call, I guess, tumultuous, can we use that word, tumultuous with the president? And, look -

STEPHEN MOORE, CNN SENIOR ECONOMICS ANALYST: I think that's a good word to describe the week, yes. BERMAN: So you know investors don't like that.

MOORE: That's right.

BERMAN: You know investors don't like uncertainty. And they see this. They see President Trump focused on things that they don't think are important, you know, tax cuts, regulatory reform. What does that do? What does a weekend like this do to his hopes, you know, I think, to move things forward?

MOORE: Well, just a couple things before I answer that question, John. I mean just to respond to what Austan was saying. Look, it is true this has been a now eight year bull market. But, you know, if you look at 2015 and '16, the market was kind of - you know, it grew a little bit, but flat. I mean since the election, though, of Donald Trump, the market is up 15 percent. So that's a - that's a pretty big increase in just two or three or four months.

Now, this poll of the economists, who cares what economists think? Just look at the real evidence that the fact that the stock market is up, that investor confidence is up, that purchasing orders by businesses are up. There's a - you can just feel it out there that people are feeling more buoyant about the economy.

[09:45:04] BERMAN: We're going to - we're going to hit you on that. We'll get you - we'll get you on the economy. So stand by on that.

MOORE: OK. So now on your question about - OK. On your question about the weekend. I think Christine Romans, earlier on the show, nailed it. She was exactly right, that every time you have a distraction like this with respect to the allegations that Donald Trump made over the weekend, no question about it, the market doesn't like that. The market wants Congress and the president focused on getting these tax cuts done, getting Obamacare repealed, getting some of these regulations rolled back. And when there's distractions like this, that's right, the market falls.

HARLOW: So a lot of this buildup - I know, Austan, you only give the president 1/15th or 1/16th of the credit for this market, but a lot of this gain has been an anticipatory gain from what - when they saw that he - you know, I mean you remember the night, you know, the futures were down during the election. Carl Icahn went and bought up all of these stocks and the market turned around the next morning. The question is, how long of a road and runway here are investors willing to give the president? They bet on him, you know, executing on major tax reform. How long of a road does he have to actually get it done before this market turns and says, were you all talk, no action?

GOOLSBEE: Yes, look, if you care a lot about what the stock market thinks, then you are a little bit going to be a prisoner to the - to that exact question, that the markets are going to say, well, we're getting impatient. We want you to do x, y, z. We want you to do it faster.

Historically, I will observe, that most presidents do the majority of what they're going to do in their presidency in the first year. So if - if by bobbling around and getting in arguments over who is the leaker and accusing past presidents of criminal behavior with no evidence, if you're going to do all that stuff and that you can't get your tax reform done or you don't actually have a replacement plan for Obamacare, or you don't have the infrastructure plan, if you wait until year two and 2018, I think that the market is clearly going to be saying, we're going to have some doubts that you can actually do your program.

MOORE: Yes, I agree. I agree entirely with that.

BERMAN: So, Stephen Moore -

MOORE: And I think that, you know, that's one of the reasons you're - you just see these kind of jitters. What's the market down, like 65, 70 points the last time I checked this morning. And that is a result of people wondering, gosh, is Trump taking his eye off the ball. And Austan is right about another thing here, you know, there is a window of opportunity. We usually call it a honeymoon period, but I don't know if Congress and the media have given Trump much of a honeymoon. But, you know, there's a period when the president's first elected when you get a lot of things done. I remember when Austan was working for President Obama and you guys got that stimulus plan through, the $800 billion plan, I think in the first 60 days or something like that. So, you know, you want to act quickly when you're the president because the window does close politically and it gets tougher to do. And that's why I've been urging, you know, President Trump, you know, get this tax cut done as quickly as possible. Don't wait until July, August, September, do it now.

BERMAN: So, can I just ask quickly, what does he say - what do his people say when you press him like this and say, don't, you know, be engaged in these sidetrack things?

MOORE: Well, you know, I sometimes - look, I love Donald Trump. I got - I really admire him, but sometimes he does get sidetracked. He says things that become headlines and take the eye off the ball and, you know, it's just the nature of this president, that he's going to do those kinds of things. It's one of the things, I think, Americans kind of find charming about him. You never know quite what he's going to say next.

But right now is the time to really focus on the economy. You showed that poll, by the way, Poppy, and, you know, it's so interesting. That hasn't changed much over the last three or four years. It's been the economy, it's been jobs, and national security have been the top concerns.

HARLOW: Yes, look, that's what he won this election on.

MOORE: You got it.

HARLOW: He knew it. He ran it. And he ran it along the rust belt and he won.

You call it charming. I think other people call it confusing, not knowing what the president is going to say. GOOLSBEE: Yes, I was going to say, that depends on what your

definition of charming is.

HARLOW: All right, we'll give it to you. It's Monday morning. Guys, thank you very much. Austan Goolsbee, Stephen Moore, we appreciate it.

Coming up next, a very disturbing story. These explicit pictures of female service members posted online without their consent. Who reported the secret site and what the Marine Corps is doing right now.


[09:53:38] BERMAN: All right, new this morning, a really troubling story. The Navy is investigating how many Marines were involved in sharing what may be hundreds of explicit pictures of female service members without their constant.

HARLOW: So the pictures were shared through his secret face group - group that's called "Marines United." This is a site that encourages others to upload the photos, of course, without the knowledge of the women in those pictures.

Let's go straight to the Pentagon. Our Barbara Starr is there with more on this investigation.

I mean, obviously, they're looking for who is behind this. How did they come across it?

BARBARA STARR, CNN ANCHOR: Well, good morning.

It looks like it was, in fact, a former Marine who spotted this and came to the Marine Corps saying he was very troubled by it. And now it has sparked an investigation by NCIS, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. They are looking into all of this, trying to determine how widespread it is and who may be behind it, whether there are active duty service members who are behind these postings. That may be something that they can go after them for with disciplinary action.

Former service members who may be behind it posting these, that might be much more difficult to go after them. A lot of concern about how many women may have had their photos posted without their knowledge. We're getting very tough reaction all the way from the commandant of the Marine Corps to the sergeant major, the top non-commissioned officer in charge of Marines. A lot of concern about all of this. And by all accounts this investigation now going full steam ahead to try and figure out what has happened here, how these photos got posted online and who may be behind it.

[09:55:19] John, Poppy.

BERMAN: All right, Barbara Starr, keep us posted. Thank you so much.

Coming up, we are minutes away, perhaps, from getting new details about the president's new revised travel ban. What's in it? What's gone? Will it pass court muster? HARLOW: And, finally, we'll know the details of it today. It was

delayed more than a week. We thought we were going to get it last week. We didn't. Now it's coming today. Stay with us. We're on top of it.

We'll be right back.


[10:00:01] HARLOW: Good morning, everyone. 10:00 a.m. Eastern. I'm Poppy Harlow.

BERMAN: I'm John Berman. Thanks so much for joining us.

Any minute now we are expecting the Trump administration to release new details of its travel ban. There is an event being held in 90 minutes. But we could get information before then