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Young Democrat to Face a Veteran in the Runoff; Miscommunications from the President; "American First" Buying Policy; Manhunt Ends for Facebook Killer; Trump Taxes Still Under Audit. Aired 3-4a ET

Aired April 19, 2017 - 03:00   ET


[03:00:00] ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN ANCHOR: ... as we cover the results of a special congressional election in the State of Georgia with national implications.

Democratic newcomer Jon Ossoff just missed capturing enough votes to win the House seat outright. Instead, he will face republican Karen Handel in a June 20th runoff. Ossoff ran in a district that's been republican for decades. Whether his flip is seen as a test of President Donald Trump's support.

CNN's Manu Raju has more from Ossoff campaign headquarters in Atlanta.

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff falling just short of the threshold he need to win this race outright, getting less than 50 percent of the vote in this republican-heavy district, a district that actually no democrat has won in 37 years, getting close to that 50 percent number but not close enough.

Now, going forward, this means that it's going to be a two-person race between him and Karen Handel, republican former Secretary of State from Georgia, someone who has run for statewide office twice, lost both times for governor and once for senator.

Now she has a chance to consolidate the support on the republican side that was fractured by 11 different candidates as they tried to get into this runoff with Jon Ossoff.

Now, Ossoff does have the support of the National Democratic Party infrastructure. This party is energized behind him, and last night when he talked to voters, he said that he shattered all expectations.


JON OSSOFF, UNITED STATES DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE: There is no doubt that this is already a victory for the ages. We have defied the odds. We have shattered expectations.


RAJU: Now, the question for republicans is the fact, the Trump factor and how much will it weigh in during the general election. Donald Trump himself tweeting several times last night, also saying that this essentially was a victory for his party and criticizing outside money that was spent to help Jon Ossoff.

Of course there's outside money spent on the republican side as well. The question is will he be a liability for Karen Handel, or will he be an asset going forward?

Manu Raju, CNN, Atlanta.

CHURCH: And as Manu just reported there, it didn't take long for President Trump to tweet about Tuesday's results. He said, "Despite major outside money, fake media support and 11 republican candidates, big R win with runoff in Georgia. Glad to be of help."

Well, joining me now to talk more about this is Scott Lucas, professor of international politics at the University of Birmingham in England. Thank you so much for being with us.

So, this Georgia congressional seat has been a reliable republican stronghold for nearly four decades, and yet we see a 30-year-old first-time candidate give the established republicans a run for their money as well as a wake-up call for the Trump administration. Now that the vote goes to a runoff, how tough will this one-on-one race likely be, do you think?

SCOTT LUCAS, UNIVERSITY OF BIRMINGHAM SHOOL OF INTERNATIONAL POLITICS PROFESSOR: We're in for an interesting two months. The harder challenge for the democrats begins now because if you do the math, if all the republicans unite behind a single candidate like Karen Handel, then they would have a narrow majority.

But of course there's so many factors to play in now. The first and most important is whether the republicans do unite. It's not just the Trump factor. There are some republicans who believe that they should vote that way because they support Donald Trump. There are others who see him as a liability.

Now, how do you pull all those people together, especially if the president is going to intervene in the race in a very high-profile way like he did in the last few days? That national intervention in local politics is something that's hard to predict.

On the democratic side, they did rally around Jon Ossoff. That was a major victory to start off with. But can they keep the momentum going? You know, two months is still a long time in politics. So, can they make sure that this isn't just a protest vote against Trump but that Ossoff is seen as a beneficial candidate for Georgia?

This is a very diverse congressional district. African-American voters, suburban whites, working class whites. So it's hard to ask for any politician to pull a coalition together. Now we'll see the challenge with him.

CHURCH: Yes, we certainly shall. And Jon Ossoff as we heard called this a victory for the ages while President Trump claimed as a victory for his Republican Party. Who was the winner in this first round, do you think, and who needs to worry going forward?

LUCAS: Well, if you cut through the hyperbole, not quite a victory for the ages. We have a long way to go. The democrats will take heart from last night. I mean, this was a seat that the outgoing congressman, Tom Price, won by about 25 percent last time around.

[03:05:00] Now the democrats are on the verge of winning it. They'll see that coming off of their strong showing in Kansas. So there's clearly sort of a tide for the democrats fighting back against the Trump -- unexpected Trump factor.

As for the president himself, look, you know, Donald Trump basically could call drowning at sea a victory for walking on water. He would say that last night.

More important question is whether the republicans as a whole can get the party together because it is divided. That's the one thing that we keep seeing in Washington at a local level. You got tea party republicans. You got establishment republicans, and then you got this wild card factor of the president.

CHURCH: And as we mentioned, Donald Trump sent out a tweet Tuesday night saying he was glad to have been of help. Is that how the republican candidates in Georgia would have viewed this, and what role might Mr. Trump play in the weeks before this June 20th runoff given he didn't ever endorse one of the 11 republican candidates going into this vote? How might the strategy change, do you think?

LUCAS: Well, I suspect Karen Handel and her folks would like the president to take a deep breath and hold off Twitter at least for a few days because, you know, my family are from Georgia. And there's always a question when an outsider comes in, even if it's a Donald Trump, whether he knows what he's talking about local politics.

And if this goes to the issues in Georgia, like the economy, questions of jobs, the president firing off 140 characters may not help Karen Handel. It may hurt her.

CHURCH: And what might this vote signal for the 2018 midterms, and do you think this amounted to a referendum on the Trump administration as some have suggested, or was it also a referendum on the democrats?

LUCAS: It's a referendum in a sense. We're seeing, you know, the initial shock waves, you know, coming in three months after the inauguration, and no doubt we've got a long road to go before 2018. I think it's going to turn on two things.

First of all, never underestimate the power of local issues, and there are many changing districts in America. Keep an eye on what is happening in DeKalb, Fulton, Cobb Counties. But secondly at national level, the Trump administration needs a win. It needs to get some type of advance.

It failed to repeal Obamacare. It's failed to put forth a tax plan so far. And the longer it goes on, the longer it appears to be an administration that doesn't have direction, and that can mean that the next referendum is one that goes against the republicans.

CHURCH: And still just as you say, your family is from Georgia, so you understand all of this. When you've got a 30-year-old first-time candidate running up against a republican and she's very well- credentialed, isn't she? Are you surprised that he got the support that he did?

LUCAS: No. I mean Jon Ossoff is, you know, a very charismatic candidate. He came across extremely well. That's why the democrats rallied around him. That's why they didn't field 11 candidates like the republican last night.

You know, we've had surprise young politicians who leapt up very quickly to national level. There was a young guy named Barack Obama who suddenly emerge a few years ago. So, Ossoff doesn't count against him. I think the question is Jon Ossoff, from the area, tied in with roots.

You know, the question about where he goes with his personal life has occupied some of the media. The most important thing is Georgia is a rapidly changing state. It's not a traditional southern state in a lot of ways. You know, Atlanta, the supposed boom city of the south, but that's come with challenges itself.

Can Ossoff speak to those people as one of them when Karen Handel has questions about her failed candidacies in the past? And conversely, can she recover from that failed governor's race in 2014 and questions over her record as secretary of state.

CHURCH: It's going to be an interesting few weeks in the lead-up to this runoff in June. Scott Lucas, always a pleasure to get your analysis. Thanks so much.

Well, the American vice president is in Japan to show that the United States is determined to act against North Korea. Earlier, Mike Pence told American troops how the U.S. plans to address Pyongyang's nuclear threats.


MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We will defeat any attack and meet any use of conventional or nuclear weapons with an overwhelming and effective American response.


The United States of America will always seek peace. But under President Trump, the shield stands guard and the sword stands ready.


CHURCH: But another story that's attracting a lot of attention, this photo posted on the U.S. navy web site shows the White House was misleading when it initially said warships were on their way to the Korean Peninsula. [03:09:58] The photo showed strike group was actually sailing away

from the Peninsula. It also participated in exercises with Australian forces. It's now expected to arrive in the region by the end of the month.

U.S. officials are blaming miscommunication between the White House and the Pentagon.

Well, our Alexandra Field joins us now from Tokyo. Alexandra, the optics don't look good when the President of the United States announces he's sending a naval armada to the waters off the Korean Peninsula, and then we learn those very same ships are heading in the other direction. What's been the reaction in the region to what's being described as a miscommunication?

ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think people are positively startled by it, Rosemary. You had the declaration that the USS Carl Vinson was being sent to the waters off the Korean Peninsula, not expressly to act in any way but to be there as a deterrent, a flexing of muscle, a show of force.

And now you've got this bizarre explanation that there was miscommunication not only between the Pentagon and the White House but also the explanation that there was a failure to follow up with the commanders of that USS air -- that U.S. aircraft carrier, which is now seems departed Singapore and headed south when the world was being told it would head north.

But beyond the fact the people in this region are surprised that the warships which were supposedly headed toward those waters were nowhere near the area which they were believed to be in, there's also the fact that this seemed to have set off a bit of a chain reaction or at least rise, giving more rise to the level of tension in the region during a very sensitive time.

We know that while these warships were meant to be there as a deterrent, the fact of their presence or the reported fact of their presence more accurately had enraged Pyongyang. They had said that the presence of strategic nuclear assets from the U.S. in the region was threatening global security, disturbing global peace, and could bring the region to the brink of thermonuclear war.

We do know that Pyongyang did not stop with the provocations even after they were told that these warships were being sent into their region.

Instead, the leader, Kim Jong-un, decided to try and test-launch a missile just as the U.S. vice president was arriving in South Korea, Rosemary.

CHURCH: So how embarrassing has this been for Vice President Mike Pence as he visits Tokyo, and what more has he been saying about the North Korean nuclear threat and how the U.S. might respond?

FIELD: Look, whether or not the administration considers this to be embarrassing in any way is not at all clear. What we do know is that Vice President Mike Pence has delivered a very similar message in both South Korea and in his visit to Japan, which is to reaffirm the strength of the alliance between these countries and the U.S.

And while he did not talk about this miscommunication when he addressed service members today, he did try to reflect on what he considers to be the successes of the administration, showing that the U.S. has shown its resolve under President Donald Trump in conducting its strikes on Syria and also the dropping of that MOAB, the mother of all bombs, in Afghanistan. Rosemary.

CHURCH: Our Alexandra Field bringing us that live report from Tokyo, where it is 4.13 in the afternoon. Many thanks.

Back now to U.S. politics and new reporting on the FBI investigation into Russian meddling in last year's election and possible connections to Trump associates.

Justice correspondent Evan Perez broke the story along with Shimon Prokupez and Manu Raju. Evan is with us now from Washington with the details. So Evan, what can you tell us?

EVAN PEREZ, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Rosemary, U.S. officials tell CNN that last year the FBI used a dossier of allegations of Russian ties to Donald Trump's campaign as part of the justification to get approval to secretly monitor Trump associate Carter Page.

FBI Director James Comey has cited the dossier in some of the briefings to members of Congress in recent weeks as one of the sources of information that the FBI has used to support its investigation.

This includes approval from the secret court that oversees the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, known as FISA in this country, to monitor Page's communications. Now to obtain that court permission to target Page, the FBI and the Justice Department would have to present probable cause that he was acting as an agent of a foreign power, including possibly engaging in clandestine intelligence gathering for a foreign government.

Comey and other top Justice Department officials would have had to sign off on this request. Last year, Page was identified by the Trump campaign as an adviser on national security though they have since said that he had limited interactions with the campaign as a volunteer.

CHURCH: So, Evan, how surprising is it that this was done?

PEREZ: It's actually quite surprising. Comey's briefings to lawmakers stand in contrast to efforts in recent months by the FBI and by U.S. intelligence agencies to try to distance themselves from this dossier.

U.S. law enforcement and intelligence officials have told us repeatedly that U.S. investigators did their own work, separate from the dossier, to support their findings that Russia tried to meddle in the 2016 presidential election in favor of Donald Trump.

[03:15:07] Comey hasn't mentioned the dossier in all of his lawmaker briefings here in Congress.

CHURCH: So would carter page be aware this was even happening?

PEREZ: He probably would not. But you'll recall that Page has been scrutinized before by the FBI. There was a 2013 investigation of a Russian spy ring that included descriptions of interactions that he had with alleged Russian spies.

Now Russians -- I'm sorry. Carter Page has denied that he knew that these people were Russian agents. He also gave a speech in Russia last summer that drew the attention of the FBI. Page says that he took the trip independently. He says that he expressed his own views and overrule he has disputed that anything was illegal in his interactions with Russians.

He did give us a statement that reads in part, quote, "I look forward to the Privacy Act of 1974 lawsuit that I plan to file in response to civil rights violations by the Obama administration appointees last year. The discovery process will be of great value to the United States as our nation hears testimony from them under oath and we receive disclosure of the documents which show what exactly what's done in 2016."

The bottom line here is that Carter Page says that this entire Russia story is being driven by former democratic officials in the Obama administration. He said none of it is true.

CHURCH: Unbelievable and fascinating as well. Evan Perez, thank you so much for your reporting on this.

PEREZ: Thanks.



DON RIDDELL, CNN WORLD SPORT ANCHOR: Hey, I'm Don Riddell with your CNN World Sport headlines.

And there's only one place to start today. That's the Champions League. A tournament Real Madrid are starting to call their own. This season they're trying to win it for a third time in just four years. And they've booked their place in the semifinals.

A Bayern Munich were prime for a comeback after Real's defender Sergio Ramos scored on goal. Just so Ramos' 100th Champions League game but he was bailed out by another kind of centurian. Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat-trick for 100 Champions League goals.

Madrid won 4-2 on the night, 6-3 on aggregate. And it's been a great day for the Madrid clubs. Atletico are also into the semifinals but their progress ends Leicester City's extraordinary fairytale run. Atletico brought a 1-nil lead from the first leg and double their advantage for their first half strike from Saul Niguez.

[03:19:58] (Inaudible) was devastating for Leicester who now needed to score 3. They made a fight of it, but Jamie Vardy's goal proved to be a consolation as Atletico won a tie 2-1 on aggregates.

The world top tennis players have descended upon Monaco for the annual Masters Series event. Novak Djokovic lives there in fact. But the world number two needed three sets to Gilles Simon in his first clay court match of the year. Djokovic the two time champ for Monte Carlo (Inaudible) 16.

That is a quick look at your sports headlines. I'm Don Riddell.

CHURCH: We are bringing you live coverage of the hotly contested U.S. congressional race in Georgia. Democrat Jon Ossoff fell short of the outright majority he needed to claim a seat in the House. He'll face republican Karen Handel in a runoff in June.

Democrats pumped more than $8 million into the Ossoff campaign. The vote in the longtime republican district is viewed as a test of President Trump's support and a predictor of next year's midterm elections.

CNN political commentator Jack Kingston is a former republican Congressman from Georgia. He says all that out-of-state money going into Ossoff's campaign won't win him the election against Handel. Take a listen.


JACK KINGSTON, FORMER UNITED STATES REPRESENTATIVE: Ninety percent of his money came from out of state. Most of his volunteers, most of his campaign apparatus was propped up by out of state consultants. There's an old expression in politics. You can't beat somebody with nobody.

Jon Ossoff is a guy who is 30 years old, has very little to show for his 30 years on earth in terms of achievement or vocation or career or anything like that. Karen Handel is an accomplished business woman. She's been a successful elected official. She's a party activist, and she's going to, I think, very comfortably take the seat with about 54 percent of the vote.


CHURCH: And earlier I spoke with democratic political strategist Mac Zilber about the race in Georgia.


MAC ZILBER, DEMOCRATIC POLITICAL STRATEGIST: These are the types of nights that you live for in democratic politics and politics as a whole, when someone upends the system and really shocks the world.

And what we're seeing right now, many democrats like myself, are hoping is the seeds of a wave. You know, in 2008, there were three special elections in seats just like this one in which democrats shocked the world and took them from the Republican Party. And those were sort of the early beginnings of what turned out to be a 2008 electoral wave. And I think that this is a good sign that that enthusiasm is coming about in this cycle. CHURCH: So does this put the GOP's House majority in jeopardy do you

think for the 2018 midterms?

ZILBER: It's too early to say. One of the big differences in a special election compared to a 2018 general election is that a lot fewer people will have voted today than will vote in the midterms, which means that if you have an enthusiastic base, it's a lot easier to over perform a hostile district in a special election than it is in a general.

That being said, historically speaking, these special election upsets are among the earliest tea leaves that we see that determine whether we're going to see a wave like this. And the fact that democrats poured in across the country millions of dollars, over $10 million in small contributions to Jon Ossoff, I think shows that people are ready to fight and ready to they're ready to try to win back the House.

CHURCH: So would you agree with some that this is a referendum on Donald Trump? Do you think a political test for the Trump administration?

ZILBER: Absolutely. There is no way that a democrat gets to 50 percent in this district unless you have a monumentally unpopular republican president in office.

Typically speaking, presidents take a beating in their first midterm election as president. Obama did in 2010. Bill Clinton did in 1994. Even Ronald Reagan did. But Donald Trump is far more unpopular than any of them were at this point in their presidency.

In fact, he's the most unpopular president at this point in his presidency that we've seen in the history of polling. And this is going to have big reverberations in congressional districts like this all across the country.

CHURCH: And I have to ask you this. So, why would the republicans put up 11 candidates and effectively split their vote, and why didn't President Trump endorse one of them at least?

ZILBER: Well, that's the beauty of this election is that republicans had so many candidates running because they thought they were going to win the seat. In a safe seat like this where the incumbent got over 60 percent of the vote every election without fail, few republicans likely consider the possibility that they wouldn't hold on to the seat.

Meanwhile, only one substantial democrat got recruited into the race. You often see this in red states where only one meaningful democrat will get in because most democrats who are viable who are say, say, state senators or state assembly members who can raise money don't think the seat is winnable to begin with.


[03:25:01] CHURCH: And that was democratic political strategist Mac Zilber joining me a little earlier. Well, U.S. President Donald Trump is pushing for tougher rules on

skilled foreign workers trying to get U.S. jobs. Mr. Trump signed a buy American/hire American executive order Tuesday at a tool factory in Wisconsin. The president says it will benefit American goods and American workers.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This historic action declares that the policy of our government is to aggressively promote and use American-made goods and to ensure that American labor is hired to do the job. It's America first. You better believe it.



CHURCH: Under the new order, federal agencies will review and recommend changes to the H-1B visa program.

Another story we're watching closely, Malaysia Airlines wants to keep a close eye on its flights. It's the first carrier to sign up for a service that will track every minute of a flight's journey with satellites.

The airline has been haunted by MH-370, the flight that disappeared more than three years ago with 239 people onboard. It remains one of the world's biggest aviation mysteries, and the exact crash site is still unknown. The new satellite system is expected to come online next year.

Well, up next, big political news out of the U.K. Theresa May is taking Britain to the polls again. What changed her mind after months of promises to the contrary?

Plus, in a CNN exclusive, Turkey's president speaks to CNN. Next, what he said when we brought up claims that new constitutional reforms make him a dictator. We'll have that for you in just a moment.


CHURCH: Welcome back, everyone. We are continuing our coverage of a U.S. congressional race in Georgia where democrats hope to flip a long-held republican district.

Democrat Jon Ossoff will face republican Karen Handel in a runoff June 20th. The closely watched race is seen as a possible predictor of next year's midterm elections. Though, Ossoff fell short of the majority for a win Tuesday, he says he's ready for a fight.


OSSOFF: There is no amount of dark money, super PAC negative advertising that can overcome real grassroots energy like this.

(APPLAUSE) So bring it on.


Because we are courageous. We are humble. And we know how to fight.


CHURCH: Now, we're also following another big election to come, this one in Britain. Prime Minister Theresa May is calling for a snap election in early June. She had spent months saying there would be no early election, but she says opposition parties are trying to block her brexit plans and that the country needs unity for a smooth transition out of the E.U.


THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Every vote to the conservatives will make me stronger when I negotiate for Britain with the prime ministers, presidents, and chancellors of the European Union.

Every vote for the conservatives will mean we can stick to our plan for a stronger Britain and take the right long-term decisions for a more secure future.


CHURCH: The latest polls suggest that May is playing a strong hand. A YouGov survey last week showed 44 percent of voters would support her conservatives, almost double that of the opposition labor party.

But Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon says this only helps her case for another vote on Scotland's independence.


NICOLA STURGEON, SCOTLAND'S FIRST MINISTER: yes, clearly she sees the opportunity given the total disarray in the ranks of the labor party to crush all opposition to her, to get rid of people who disagree with her and to give her a free hand to take the country in the increasingly right-wing direction that she wants to take in.


CHURCH: CNN's Europe editor Nina dos Santos is live at 10 Downing Street. So, Nina, many were surprised by the British prime minister's call for an early election, but it doesn't appear to be a gamble if the polls are any guide. How is this expected to play out, and will it strengthen Theresa May's hand as she suggested?

NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN CORRESPPONDENT: Well, the two way party is raise a thing of the 17 seats in the House of Congress. It's always going to be an issue after the 2015 election, and still an issue if she manages to capital size on some of the polling data that you just mentioned before, Rosemary, where she could grab up to 200 seats. Well, that would so strengthen her hand over all parties in

Westminster and also some members of her own party who don't espouse her own view as how these brexit negotiations should be led. And she will be able to, as a result, make better negotiations with Brussels, it's hoped.

She'll have a stronger hand at the negotiating table. That is what she says. But the reality is, as you pointed out, this is a significant U- turn. Only up until a month or so ago, she was saying the next general election should be when it's due at the end of this decade, so 2020.

The problem with that is if brexit negotiations are coming up to their climactic finale, well, that will also overshadow that general election and could allow the Europeans to have some kind of leverage over these talks as the countries goes to the polls.

So just going back to those polls, as you mentioned there before conservative party leading by more than 20 points at this point, 44 to labor's 23 percent. That is the widest margin between these parties since another female prime minister was famously the occupant of number 10 Downing Street, Margaret Thatcher's 1983 landslide victory.

[03:35:01] That's the kind of figure that Theresa May is hoping for. But of course as we know, polls have been very unreliable recently in these feverish election cycles, and there's only six weeks to get ready for this general election. So, it's going to be difficult to call.

CHURCH: And we will be watching it very closely. Nina Dos Santos joining us from the front of 10 Downing Street where it is just after 8.30 in the morning there. Many thanks.

Well, the opposition in Turkey is challenging the results of the constitutional referendum that gives the president new and mostly unchecked powers.

An election observer says up to 2.5 million votes may have been manipulated. Protesters are furious because that's almost double the margin of victory. The reforms will end Turkey's parliamentary democracy under the biggest change since the creation of the modern republic.

In a CNN exclusive, our Becky Anderson spoke with President Erdogan in his first interview since that vote, and Becky joins us now from Ankara. Good to see you, Becky. So what all did Turkey's president have to say about the outcome, and how did he answer his many critics?

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN ANCHOR: Well, Rosemary, I asked Mr. Erdogan straight up for his response to his critics, who say this new Turkish- style presidency and these sweeping powers that gives him is a slow march to dictatorship here in Turkey.

He is insistent that, one, this referendum he says was a democratic exercise and the result is the will of the people and that, two, the tectonic shift in the way this country will be run going forward has sufficient checks and balances to ensure that it's about more than one man's rule. Take a listen.


RECEP TAYYIP ERDOGAN, TURKISH PRESIDENT (through translator): There's something that I say in the squares over and over again. This is not a system belonging to Tayyip Erdogan. I am a mortal being. I can die at any time.

Therefore, to have a system for a mortal being who could die at any moment, is that possible? The system represents a change, a transformation in the democratic history of Turkey. That's the purpose of it. We are now removing a dual-head system.

At the moment, the prime minister is head of the executive -- head of the government but as well as being the leader of a political party. What we are saying is let's get rid of this duality and have a system where we have one president so that we have a much stronger executive position.

ANDERSON: And with the deepest of respect, your greatest critics will say that this is the march towards dictatorship. What's your response?

ERDOGAN (through translator): For a dictatorship to exist, you don't necessarily have to have a presidential system. Here we have an election, a ballot box. If you say a ballot box produces a dictator, that will be unjust, unfair to the ballot box process and to those who cast their ballots in that box.


ANDERSON: And Rosemary, you alluded to what was a big defeat for the opposition here. From all my conversations with people, the opposition actually ran one of their best campaigns for this referendum, but they still lost. They insist not only were there voting irregularities during the actual voting process, stuffing ballots, if you will.

But that even before the first ballot was cast, they say this deck was stacked against them given the crackdown on dissent here since the military coup back in July last year and indeed the ongoing state of emergency charging that they were effectively muzzled. They say there was no level playing field.

Just now, I'm seeing reports that the head of the Turkish election board says that they will evaluate complaints on this referendum today. Will that change the outcome? Probably not. We discussed the opposition's complaints, and the president was supremely confident that the result will stand.

In fact, he suggested to me that any self-respecting party leader who had lost as many elections as the CHP had here in Turkey, he said, should step down. This will be a moment of truth for the opposition. How can they effectively challenge a president, a ruling party that now has even more power than before? Rosemary?

[03:39:56] CHURCH: Yes. And on that very topic, if it does represent a big defeat for the opposition, what lies ahead for them, and what about protesters? What are they planning to do? Do they feel they still have a voice there?

ANDERSON: Well, it's interesting because there were protests in Istanbul. Istanbul is one of the three main cities, as you know, here, Istanbul, Ankara, and Izmir, all of which actually voted no in this election.

There were interesting parallels by the way between what happened here and what happened with the vote in the U.S. and in the U.K. Let me say that insofar as what happened here is that the urban elite voted against the ruling party.

It was the rural heartland who voted for the changes to the system here.

But there were some protests in Istanbul. There are more calls. I was talking to our producer in Istanbul just yesterday, who did say that there was very little evidence of security and police on the streets.

If that is to suggest that having won, the president and the security forces here quite frankly feel they can just get on with things and they don't really care whether people protest or not. That remains to be seen. But, yes, there's an awful lot of anger behind the scenes here as to what many people say was a stolen election. Rosemary.

CHURCH: Many thanks to our Becky Anderson joining us there live from Ankara, where it is 10.40 in the morning.

And just this reminder to our international viewers, in less than two hours from now, we will be airing Becky's full, exclusive interview with the Turkish president. That's Wednesday at noon in Ankara, 5 p.m. in Hong Kong, only here on CNN.

Let's take a short break here. But coming up, U.S. authorities find an accused murderer after a nationwide manhunt. How their search ended. That's just ahead.


CHURCH: We are following breaking news in the special election for a U.S. congressional seat. Democrat Jon Ossoff says he's got no doubt his showing is, quote, "a victory for the ages."

He fell short of an outright majority, but his support in a solidly republican district is viewed as a referendum on President Trump's popularity. Also faces republican Karen Handel in the June 20th runoff.

Well, the man at the center of a three-day multi-state manhunt in the U.S. is dead. Steve Stephens had been on the run after police say he brutally gunned down a man and posted video of the murder online.

CNN's Brynn Gingras has the details.


CALVIN WILLIAMS, CLEVELAND POLICE CHIEF: The search for Steve Stephens has ended.


BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The nationwide search for the man police say killed a 75-year-old man and posted a video of it on Facebook is over.


WILIAMS: Pennsylvania state police officers received a tip that the vehicle that we were looking for, the white Ford Fusion, was in a McDonald's parking lot near Erie, P.A.


GINGRAS: A signal from Stephens' cell phone first drew police to the east side of Erie on Sunday.


WILLIAMS: We searched that area initially on Sunday when we got that ping up in that area of Erie, P.A. We are in the process today of going back and doing a more thorough search of that area when this transpired.


GINGRAS: But it was today's tip from a McDonald's drive-through employee that led police to Stephens. The 37-year-old took off, leading police on a two-mile chase ending when police forced him to lose control of his car.


WILLIAMS: As the officers approached that vehicle, Steve Stephens took his own life.


GINGRAS: His death ends a nationwide manhunt that started when police say he killed Robert Godwin Easter Sunday on a Cleveland street.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Lord, have mercy! Oh, my God.


GINGRAS: Godwin's murder posted to Facebook. On the video, Stephens said he is a monster who snapped and did it because he was angry with his girlfriend. Godwin apparently targeted at random.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was definitely a people person. There's nobody that didn't love my dad. GINGRAS: His family mourning his loss but (TECHNICAL PROBLEM)




OSSOFF: There is no doubt that this is already a victory for the ages.


We have defied the odds. We have shattered expectations.


CHURCH: Updating our breaking news on the battle for a U.S. congressional seat in Georgia, the election now moves to a runoff in June where democrat Jon Ossoff, you just saw there will face republican Karen Handel. The vote in this longtime republican district is viewed as a possible predictor of U.S. midterm elections next year.

Well, the deadline for Americans to file their taxes has come and gone, but President Donald Trump's tax returns are still nowhere to be seen. Hard to imagine, but not even all the encouragement in the world has convinced the president to change his mind.

Here's Jeanne Moos.

JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Why won't President Trump release his taxes? His critics goad him by calling him chicken, using chicken masks, even a chicken dance. As tax day comes and goes, what isn't going away is all the poking at the president.


STEPHEN COLBERT, COMEDIAN: Show us your taxes. Show us your taxes.


MOOS: Stephen Colbert threw Mardi Gras beads because they're often thrown to get women to reveal their assets. The president is being goaded by democrats like New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who released his own 2016 taxes, tweeting, "See, President Trump, it's not that hard." He's even being goaded by impersonators.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's release them, boys. Release the taxes. There we go. There we go.


[03:54:58] MOOS: The president's least favorite impersonator, Alec Baldwin, once taunted the president, release your tax returns, and I'll stop impersonating you. Even Easter was used to egg on the president.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Apparently the Easter egg hunt is still going on because Trump hid those Easter eggs as well as he hides his tax returns.


MOOS: Sean Spicer reading to kids. Supersonic ears. Was photo shopped into Spicer reading a book called my "My Taxes" by Donald T, I paid them. But what critics like to use most against the president are his own words.


ELIZABETH WARREN, (D) UNITED STATES SENATOR: How many clips have you got here? He would reveal them after this, he would reveal them after that.

TRUMP: If I decide to run for office, I'll produce my tax returns absolutely.

I have no objection to certainly showing tax returns.

Well, I'm thinking about it.

We're working on it right now. At the appropriate time you'll be very satisfied.

I don't mind releasing. I'm under a routine audit, and it will be released. And as soon as the audit is finished it will be released.


MOOS: But even for Trump supporters, that audit line has become taxing.


TOM COTTON, UNITED STATES SENATOR: As far as I'm aware, the president says he's still under audit.



MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.

CHURCH: And we'll see what happens. Thanks for your company. I'm Rosemary Church. Remember to connect me anytime on Twitter. I love to hear from you.

Early Start is next for our viewers here in the United States. For everyone else, stay tuned for more news with Isa Soares in London. Have yourselves a great day. [04:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)