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Combating A Nuclear North Korea; Manhunt For Murder Suspect; Trump Defends About-Face On China; Steep Temp Drop For Northeast; United Airline's New Plan; End of Democracy in Turkey; What Is The Highest Paying Company? Aired 4:30-5a ET

Aired April 17, 2017 - 04:30   ET




[04:30:00] MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The era of strategic patience is over.


ALISON KOSIK, CNN ANCHOR: Breaking Overnight, the vice-president with strong words of warning for North Korea as he visits the DMZ. We're live with how this affects the battle to stop Pyongyang.

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: And a growing manhunt this morning for the suspect in a Cleveland murder posted on Facebook. The victim's family is grieving as police expand the search beyond Ohio. We'll tell you where, what a disturbing story.

Welcome back to EARLY START, everybody. I'm Dave Briggs.

KOSIK: Good morning. I'm Alison Kosik. Thanks joining us.

And Breaking Overnight, Vice-president, Mike Pence on the border between North and South Korea visiting the demilitarized zone, the DMZ delivering a message to Pyongyang from the administration speaking with one voice, all options are on the table.

The VPs visit comes amid growing tensions with North Korea and hours after the regime's failed missile test launch. With the U.S. pressing China to get its client state under control, Pence echoes Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson's words from one month ago today. The era of strategic patience is over.


PENCE: We seek peace, but America has always sought peace through strength. The people of North Korea, the military of North Korea should not mistake the resolve of the United States of America to stand with our ally. The alliance between South Korea and the United States is iron clad. We will continue to stand strong, to achieve our shared objective across this region and across the world of a denuclearized Korean peninsula.


BRIGGS: And the official message from the Trump Administration on that failed missile launch, once again deliberately low keyed Defense Secretary Jim Mattis put out a very brief statement, "The president and his military team are aware of North Korea's most recent unsuccessful missile launch. The president has no further comment.

The blown launch is not easing concern over Pyongyang's aggressive work on ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons. At a weekend parade, North Korea showed off some new military hardware. For the latest, we turn to CNN's Paula Hancocks live in Seoul.

Good morning to you, Paula. Some very stark, strong words from the vice president concerning that situation in the region.

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, that's right, Dave. It is quite a lengthy statement and one thing that really jumped out of me was when the vice president made a comment about what President Trump has done when it comes to military action so far talking -- mentioning that strike on the air base in Syria, also the missile strike in Afghanistan did the mother of all bombs, and he made a direct link to North Korea, which is something we haven't really heard too much of in the past.

He said, "North Korea would do well not to test his resolve." So, it's really a very thinly veiled warning to North Korea, that President Trump has ordered military action in the past that clearly he won't have a problem doing it in the future. So, that was certainly something that jumped out of me, it's something we haven't seen before.

He did though point out that obviously the preferred course of action was peaceful. He also mentioned the word negotiations which we haven't heard too much from the Trump Administration when it comes to North Korea. But of course, at this point, it's very difficult to see how it would change anything. Certainly, going to the DMZ sends a message to North Korea that the U.S. as Pence said stands shoulder-to-shoulder with South Korea.

But, Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader has made it very clear he will test another nuclear weapon. He has said he will continue his nuclear missile testing. He said he is close to test launching an ICBM, which could potentially hit mainland United States, so it is a show of strength from the United States, strong words certainly but it's difficult to see how at this the point it would make a difference to North Korea. Dave?

[04:35:00] BRIGGS: Paula, this comes amid a rather political tense time there in South Korea. We've got an ex-president on trial and elections for a new president in just about three weeks. What's the latest?

HANCOCKS: Well, that's right. Just in the last hour or so, Dave, we actually heard that the Former President, Park Geun-hye has now being indicted by prosecutors on charges of abuse of power, coercion, bribery and a number of other charges. So, it's a tricky situation for Pence to find himself and the vice-president having to do a little bit of diplomatic tap dancing. He is meeting or did meet the acting president who, quite frankly, won't be in power in three weeks' time.

There is a presidential election coming up on May 9th. But, the very fact that the vice president didn't think that he should postpone this trip until that moment shows that the administration considers this issue urgent. In fact, the vice president did say that it's the most urgent and dangerous threat to peace right now.

BRIGGS: And the Conservative candidate is surging somewhat in the polls for that May 9th election. Paula, thank you. Appreciate it.

KOSIK: China is the critical wildcard in the North Korea equation. The vice president had this to say about China and their willingness to cooperate on North Korea, listen.


PENCE: It is heartening to see China commit to these actions, but the United States is troubled by China's economic retaliation against South Korea for taking appropriate steps to defend itself. The better path would be for China to address the North Korean threat that is actually making such defensive measures necessary.


KOSIK: On the campaign trail, President Trump hammered the Chinese for their trade practices, but after meeting with President Xi Jinping two weeks ago, Mr. Trump is toning down the rhetoric tweeting, "Why would I call China a currency manipulator when they are working with us on the North Korean problem? We will see what happens.

CNN's Matt Rivers track you the latest developments from Beijing, so help me understand this, what leverage does the U.S. have over China to push China to influence North Korea? Yes, there is the currency manipulator title that President Trump is threatening to put over China, but the reality is there are reports that China hasn't been manipulating the Yuan in a couple of years.

And then you've President Trump saying, "Listen, I'll give you favorable trade status, how about that but January figures came out about China's trade numbers, which were exceptional.

MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I mean, economically speaking, China is doing OK. They had 6.9 percent GDP growth in the first quarter of 2017, so it really is unclear how much leverage the United States does hold over China although the fact is that China needs to export its manufactured goods to the United States, its biggest export market in order to make sure its economy is doing well, so, in that sense, there is a little bit of leverage that the United States has.

But overall, we're not really sure exactly what the Trump Administration plans to do to get China to do what it wants to do which is to use its economic leverage to force Pyongyang to stop its nuclear weapons development program. But two of what the vice president said, the vice president talking about defensive measures. He is talking about anti missile defense system that's going to be deployed in South Korea later this year, much to the Chinese should grin.

They do not feel that that missile defense system is necessary. They say it's just a thinly veiled attempt to contain China and to that economic retaliation, China has been doing a number of things including preventing certain South Korean products from being imported, halting charter flights from China to South Korea, to really use its economic leverage to express its displeasure over that anti- missile defense system.

But with the Trump Administration, they need to work together with China to help solve this North Korean crisis and really you've heard from the Trump Administration kind of a 180 recently, saying that they're happy that the Chinese do appear to be ready to be more cooperative when it comes to using that leverage to force Pyongyang to stop its weapons development.

But issues like this anti-missile defense system really bring up bouts and the fact that there are big differences on both sides in terms of how best to move forward to stop what is mutually agreed upon as a threat to world stability.

KOSIK: So many moving parts with this North Korean situation, CNN, Matt Rivers, thanks so much for all that.

BRIGGS: The vice president's message, one part of the administration's unified front echoing National Security Adviser, H.R. McMaster who was appearing to work from the same North Korean talking points. CNN, Suzanne Malveaux has more.

[04:40:00] SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Alison and Dave. President Trump returns from his holiday weekend at Mar-A-Lago where he celebrated Easter with his family. His administration responding a multiple fronts to North Korea's failed missile test emphasizing while the provocation was small, the U.S. and its allies are ready to consider all options to deter the rogue nation from developing a nuclear weapon.

From his National Security Adviser, General McMaster speaking from Afghanistan said the National Security Council, the pentagon, the state department and U.S. Intelligence Agencies are working on a wide range of options for Trump to use if North Korea continues its threatening behavior including diplomacy, economic incentives and sanctions and military action. But he says the goal is to resolve this short of armed conflict.


H.R. MCMASTER, NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: All options are on the table, undergoing refinement and further development.


MCMASTER: This problem is coming to ahead and so it's time for us to undertake all actions we can, short of a military option to try to resolve this peacefully.


MALVEAUX: Trump tweeting that the U.S. is preparing for more aggressive action if necessary saying our military is building and is rapidly becoming stronger than ever before. Frankly, we have no choice, Alison and Dave?

BRIGGS: Suzanne, thank you. Breaking Overnight, an active manhunt underway at this hour for a suspect authority say made a video of himself killing an elderly man then posted it on Facebook. The FBI helping Cleveland police in the search for Steve Stephens, 6'1", 244 pounds, you can see him here, he was last seen driving a late model White Ford Fusion with temporary plates. Authorities also now saying Stephens may have left Ohio and warning residents of Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana and Michigan to be on alert. Officials say Stephens is armed and dangerous.

KOSIK: His mother, Maggie Green tells CNN she spoke to her son Sunday and that he said he was shooting people because he was, "mad with his girlfriend." Authorities say hundreds of leads have poured in. They are urging Stephens to surrender.


CALVIN WILLIAMS, CLEVELAND POLICE CHIEF: We need to bring this to a conclusion today. We need to get Steve off the streets. People later on can dive into exactly why this happened. But there needs to -- there's no need for any further bloodshed in this incident tonight.


KOSIK: Officials say Stephens did not know the victim, 74-year-old Robert Godwin, just picked him -- he just picked him at random. Godwin's children say they are devastated.


ROBERT GODWIN, JR., SHOOTING VICTIM'S SON: He's a good guy. He is amazing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Very good hearted.

GODWIN: Give you the shirt off his back, I mean. And I don't -- I'm not just saying that for these cameras, like people do, knowing that people ain't really right but I'm telling the truth that this man right here was a good man. And I just hate -- I hate he's gone. You know what I mean? I don't know what I'm going to do. It's not real.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Feel like my heart is going to stop. It feels like.

GODWIN: It will be all right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It feels like it's going to stop.

GODWIN: It's going to be all right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It feels like it's going to stop.


BRIGGS: Stephens also claimed to have committed multiple homicides, but Cleveland police say so far Godwin is the only known victim. Tough story, let authorities know if you see that face.

Democracy as we know it is over in Turkey after a referendum to consolidate all powers of the president. We're live in Istanbul with reaction, the bigger implications of the vote, what this all means for America as well.


[04:45:00] KOSIK: Welcome back. Time for an EARLY START on your money, Asian markets closed mixed and the most European markets are closed for the Easter Holiday. We are seeing U.S. Stock Future slight lower this morning and the dollar dipping to a five-month low against Japanese Yen earlier today over rising tensions in North Korea.

OK, we've got some disappointing retail news out, retail sales fell for the second month in a row in March. It's the first consecutive decline for retail spending in two years, a big reason for the fall? A decline in auto sales. The big three automakers all reported worse than expected sales in March, this after the auto industry saw seven straight years of record sales.

Some analysts are blaming delayed tax refunds for the decline. Consumers, you know, they weren't able to spend that money as quickly as they normally would. If you didn't already notice, taxes are due on the 18th, tomorrow. They weren't due on the 15...

BRIGGS: It's interesting, right? Consumer confidence is high. The Trump Administration wants to tout that, but all signs show a little bit of a pullback here economically, right?

KOSIK: Well, you also saw the auto industry do well. So, there's a -- there was that build-up where a lot of consumers...


KOSIK: ...went out and bought cars and then kind of they're tapped out.

BRIGGS: Slowing. All right, the movie business is not slowing. The "Fate Of The Furious" is closing out the weekend with the biggest worldwide opening in Hollywood history.

KOSIK: Dave's favorite film.

BRIGGS: I might sound floored by this, I am indeed. The 8th film in the "Fast And The Furious" franchise, eight more than I've seen made an estimated $532 million worldwide on its opening weekend, that beats the global record held by "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" which made $529 in its debut in 2015 and the "Fast And The Furious" franchise not out of gas yet, plans for a ninth and tenth instalments in 2019 and 2021. I don't mean to chuckle. It's just -- that is amazing to me...

KOSIK: What's wrong with the little...

BRIGGS: ...that there are ten films in "Fast And The Furious."

KOSIK: Well, because it does so well money, money, money.

BRIGGS: Oh, clearly. I'm missing something. I need to get it and watch a few of this.

All right, the Northeast heading into a significantly cooler week than it enjoyed on Easter Sunday, Meteorologist, Pedram Javaheri has the forecast.

[04:50:00] PEDRAM JAVAHERI, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Good morning, Dave and Alison. Look at these storms across parts of the south here, going to be generally scattered in nature but we work away towards part of the Northeast, they are cooler air, there are big story here and really a comfortable day set-up when you consider the time of year that it is.

Boston will take 71, New York City in 73, 75 in Philadelphia, you compare that to yesterday we're touching 90 degrees in a few spots. Those days, they're long gone, my friend. We'll show you what's happening here. We've got a front that's sneaking by this region bringing some showers scattered just south of Washington generally into Richmond for some of the heaviest wet weather as expected.

But notice the trend here from the 70s to the 60s and essentially even in the mid-50s thereby say Wednesday before we try to moderate a little bit but nowhere near where we were on Sunday even on today for the temps being back into the 70s, so at least looks like the trend was short lived. But here's what going on around parts of Texas and big-time storms later on into the afternoon, we're expecting from Austin down toward San Antonio on and to Corpus Christi.

Don't see much in the way of severe weather associated with that but still going to see some flooding with that into the afternoon hours and very widespread mild setup here from Chicago in 72 to New York in the lower 70s by this afternoon, guys?

BRIGGS: Oh, warmth. I'm ready for it, baby.

KOSIK: Me, too.

BRIGGS: Spring is finally here.

KOSIK: Yes, and you can take a flight on United.


KOSIK: After its PR nightmare, United has a new plan that hopes will change things. We'll get a check on what that new plan is as we watch CNN Money Stream next.

BRIGGS: I actually fly United. I'm not afraid of being dragged off.

KOSIK: Now, you're going to get in trouble for that.



[04:55:00] BRIGGS: Some are calling it the death of democracy in Turkey, which is a key United States ally. Their president Recep Erdogan declaring victory in Sunday's critical referendum vote, but the country's main opposition party is challenging the result alleging massive voter fraud. Erdogan won just over 51 percent of the vote.

If that holds-up, it means an all-powerful presidential system in Turkey for years to come. This, in a key U.S. ally in the region, one that is also very critical in the war on terror, let's go live to Istanbul and bring in CNN's Ian Lee. Ian, even at 51-48, that is far more divisive than many expected, correct?

IAN LEE, CNN REPORTER: Yes, Dave. I think the president was even shocked last night when we saw him speak. He spoke twice. The first time was a lot more subdued than we usually see him. He was probably expecting a landslide -- a landslide victory, a strong mandate going forward.

Now, this was a divisive referendum. We went out. We are able to speak to people about what they wanted. Those who supported yes, giving President Erdogan more power said it's about the economy, about reviving the sluggish Turkish economy also security something very important for voters.

On the no side, they said that this erodes the separations of powers, the checks and balances and I'd spoke with one woman who said she has seen this coming for years.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Actually, I'm sad. I cried all night. It's really sad that we have to do this worsening event. I mean in 15 years, we saw that, you know, the radical Islam has come to power and we ended up with dictatorship.

LEE: And Dave, one of the crucial things now for the president is going to be trying to unite this country something that's going to be very difficult especially when he called people who were going to vote no, previously traitors and those who are like supporters of terror.

BRIGGS: CNN's Ian Lee live for us in Istanbul, a crucial election there. Keep us up-to-date. Thank you.

KOSIK: All right, let's get a check on CNN Money Stream this morning. United Airlines trying to do some damage control, the airline says it will now require commuting staff to check-in to flights at least one hour before departure.

The change comes in the wake of the incident last Sunday when a passenger who had already boarded the flight was dragged off by law enforcement officials. United leaders said a commuting crew member needed the seat.

If the commuting crew member had to check in at least an hour before, that passenger would never have boarded the flight to begin with. And they could have avoided this whole nightmare.

Are you planning to make a career change? This is the highest paying company in America. Drum roll please? A.T. Kearney is a business consulting company that beat out the likes of Amazon and even Google -- Google with all those perks. Its median total salary is $175,000.

Now, most of the companies on the list were in tech and business consulting. One reason these companies pay so well, they require a skill set where demand far out paces supply, meaning those skills can't be replaced by a robot. They cannot be replaced by a computer.

BRIGGS: That's the key, right?

KOSIK: It is.

BRIGGS: You've to get the right training in this country.


BRIGGS: Right now, all right, EARLY START continues right now.


[05:00:00] PENCE: The era of strategic patience is over.


KOSIK: Breaking Overnight, strong words from the vice president at the DMZ declaring a strategic shift for the United States. So, what does that mean as the U.S. tears down the nuclear threat from North Korea?

BRIGGS: And a growing manhunt this morning from the suspect in a Cleveland murder posted on Facebook. The victim's family is grieving as police expand the search beyond Ohio. We'll tell you where.

Good morning and welcome to EARLY START. I'm Dave Briggs.

KOSIK: Good morning. I'm Alison Kosik. It's Monday, April 17th, it's 5:00 am in the East.

And Breaking Overnight, Vice-President, Mike Pence on the border between North and South Korea visiting the Demilitarized Zone, the DMZ delivering a message to Pyongyang from the administration that seems to be speaking with one voice, saying "All options are on the table."

The VPs visit coming amid growing tensions with North Korea and hours after the regime's failed missile test launch.