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Trump Dismisses Polls; Trump Approval Rating; First 100 Days Promises; Obama Speaks in Chicago; Hero Firefighter Saves Girl. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired April 24, 2017 - 08:30   ET


[08:30:00] ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: These polls, Jeffrey?

JEFFREY LORD, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, I think that his base is sticking with him. You know, Ali, he's going to be here in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, on Saturday night. And I can tell you, there's a lot of excitement already here on the ground. So I think his folks are sticking with him big time.

CAMEROTA: Yes. Yes, yes. I mean we've seen that. I mean I just did a panel of his diehard supporters.

LORD: Right.

CAMEROTA: Nothing has changed in basically, virtually, in the erosion with them. In fact, let me pull this up, 96 percent of Republicans who voted for Donald Trump would do so again today. Only 85 percent of Hillary Clinton voters. So, you're right, his diehard supporter will still come to the rallies and they still love him. But, Jeffrey, how do you explain the historically low approval rates of all of Americans?

LORD: Yes, I mean, in truth, Ali, I mean I see the numbers there and some of these polls, I mean the president is right, some of these polls we're saying Hillary Clinton was going to be president and they were wrong. So he's quite right about that.

But, Ali, I hate to say --

SYMONE SANDERS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: The polls were saying that -- the polls were saying that Hillary Clinton was overwhelmingly more popular and that she would win more votes, and that was actually correct, but, go ahead, Jeffrey.

LORD: Well, she didn't win the presidency and that would be correct.

SANDERS: But she won the popular vote. But here's the -- here's the thing. So, yes, Trump's base is sticking with him, but we -- we -- he is still the president of all people. And, you know, for the fact of the matter, Barack Obama's base stuck with him but Democrats still didn't do well in the mid -- when midterm elections came around. So I think --

CAMEROTA: But, Symone, I want to just challenge you on that because when it says 96 percent of all Republican voters, that's not just his base. That's not -- I mean that -- we're not just talking about the sort of diehards. That's 96 percent of Republican voters. So he's keeping Republicans.

SANDERS: Who voted -- I would venture to -- look, all I'm saying is, we have to look at what we've seen in the states, Alisyn. And what we've seen is that folks have come out, they do not like what Republicans are planning to do with health care. They did not like that now we are going -- Donald Trump is saying we are -- we are going to have to pay for the wall. They do not like -- even the supporters say they don't like that he's tweeting. This has real national security implications. And I think those have real implications for midterm elections. And so we have seen that when Republicans try to act on Donald Trump's policies, they get pushback from their base, from Republicans, from democrats. And I think that is more indicative of what it means when it -- when we talk about moving the needle for issues in this country, when we talk about whether folks are going to return to Congress after midterm elections or not.

CAMEROTA: So, Jeffrey, when you see 40 percent approval rating, that doesn't cause you any concern? If you were in this White House, you wouldn't tell Mr. Trump to change a thing?

LORD: No, because, I mean, it's only -- you know, we're not quite there to 100 days. You know, Ali, when -- to dip into history again, when Harry Truman left the White House, I think he had a 25, 35 percent popularity rating, something like that. Today he's viewed as what --

CAMEROTA: Right, but not at the 100-day mark. The 100-day mark, which is particularly low.

LORD: Today -- right, right, right. But, yes, but my -- my point is, I don't think these things are relevant. What -- what's relevant is history in terms of the entire administration.

SANDERS: They're now not relevant because Donald Trump isn't doing well. Donald Trump on the campaign trail came out with a contract with the American people because he said he was going to get so much done in the first 100 days, we're going to start quote/unquote "winning again." Donald Trump hasn't gotten not even a quarter of the things done that he promised to the American people that he would get done. So I think it does matter.

LORD: Oh, I -- I would -- I would --

SANDER: I definitely think it matter that -- it's 100 days. His approval ratings are low and we have not seen any real results.

CAMEROTA: But, Symone -- but, Symone, the people that we've spoken to, the diehards --

LORD: Oh, Symone.

CAMEROTA: Hold on one second, the diehards sort of say he's working on it. They don't expect him -- they didn't expect him to have accomplish everything in the first 100 days and maybe that is an unrealistic benchmark, Symone.

SANDERS: Well, I think it's nice that they're giving him the benefit of the doubt. But the fact of the matter is, it's Donald Trump and his -- and his people and his administration who promised all of these things. And so we don't know how long his supporters are going to continue to give him the benefit of the doubt. I guess we'll have to wait and see. But to say that, oh, now all of a sudden 100 days doesn't matter, it's too tight of a timeline, that's only because the Trump administration has not been able to deliver on that which they said they would deliver on.

CAMEROTA: Go ahead, Jeffrey.

LORD: Well, I just think that, you know, the proof in the pudding here is when you get to the end of a presidency, and no matter who the president is, and see what's been accomplished. Currently --

SANDERS: Well, hopefully that's coming sooner than later.

LORD: Well, gee. By the way, Symone, if I may, you know, Ali, when I was on the other time and we had that conversation that led to "oh, Jeffrey" --


LORD: My friend Symone has put out t-shirts which she's selling that say "oh, Jeffrey." So this morning at the American Spectator,, I've asked the spectator readers if they will buy them and hopefully Symone will split the proceeds between the Martin Luther King Center and scholarship fund for Dr. Ben Carson.

CAMEROTA: That -- Symone, are you taking him up on his offer? I like that you guys are pedaling the merchandise thing. You two, your vaudeville act has come up with on NEW DAY.

LORD: I get nothing from it. I'm just lending my name.



[08:35:00] SANDERS: I'll make sure to send a t-shirt. I'm pulling my Kellyanne Conway today, buy the stuff.


SANDERS: No, I think that it's -- I think -- we can definitely have a conversation about where to put real resources, Jeffrey. I'd like to see not just the Martin Luther King Jr. Foundation, but there are real and places across the country, whether we're talking about this Pennsylvania or right here in Washington, D.C., where I am, where we can support.

CAMEROTA: OK, I like this because --

SANDERS: So let's talk about it and maybe we can give them a health -- maybe we can give them a lesson on -- a history lesson on the true history of MLK, what he has fought for and how Donald Trump is not.

CAMEROTA: OK, but you two can have a summit --


CAMEROTA: About where you want to spend the vast proceeds that will be rolling in from your "oh Jeffrey" t-shirts. And I look forward to having one of those as well.

SANDERS: I think we can.

CAMEROTA: All right, bye, guys. Great to talk to you.

LORD: Thanks.

SANDERS: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: OK. Let's get to Chris.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Much more saleable than the other phrase that Symone coined in that particular discussion.

All right, so when we come back, we have dash cam video you have to see to believe. This actually happened. It involves a little girl and an off-duty firefighter. She's OK, but, boy, was he in the right place at the right time. The firefighter on your screen joins us live.


[08:40:16] CUOMO: Time now for the "Five Things to Know for Your New Day."

Number one, the government will shut down on Friday night if lawmakers can't make a deal, but the president's demand for a billion-dollar down payment for his border wall could be a deal breaker.

CAMEROTA: A U.S. citizen detained at the airport by North Korea. Also, if provoked, North Korea threatens to sink that U.S. aircraft carrier with a single strike.

CUOMO: An American paramedic killed in eastern Ukraine, the stronghold of Russian-backed renegades. He was working for a European monitoring group when his vehicle hit a mine. The president has yet to address the situation.

CAMEROTA: In France, the far right populist, Marine Le Pen, and political novice, Emmanuel Macron, won the first round of that presidential election. The outsider candidates will now face off in a runoff on May 7th.

CUOMO: Former President Obama about to give his first major post- presidency speech. He's going to address young community leaders and organizers at the University of Chicago, where his presidential library is planned.

CAMEROTA: For more on the "Five Things to Know," you can go to for the latest.

CUOMO: All right, so the big question with President Obama is going -- is he going to bring up the new president? We have a great guy to answer it, former senior adviser to President Obama, the Axe, David Axelrod. "The Bottom Line," next.


[08:45:08] CAMEROTA: So there's these two new national polls and they show the president's approval ratings hitting these historic lows as he approaches his first 100 days in office. The president does not like these polls. He calls them fake.

CUOMO: Except he says they're fake, except they contain very positive, some very positive info.

CAMEROTA: And he was touting them yesterday, but today they're fake.

Let's get "The Bottom Line" from CNN's senior political commentator David Axelrod.

David, help us -- give us context here. These are historically low as far back as anybody can remember for 100 days. No president was at the 40 percent approval or 42 percent approval. And yet, look, the 100-day is an artificial deadline. Nobody's voting today. And his diehard supporters are not budging.

DAVID AXELROD, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes. No, I think you summed it up.

Look, I think, first of all, what we've seen is the clash between the reality of campaigning and the reality of governing. Donald Trump got elected with this let me take care of it bravado, as if governing was a reality show and he could come into the board room and make decisions and things would happen. And what he's learning is that as president that's not the way it works on every issue. He seems to be discovering that things are more complicated than he realized. And in some cases he's made adaptations and he's done well. On the national security front, there are a few places where you'd point to that. Some of the executive orders on things that he wanted to get done. But in dealing with Congress, and in dealing with these very complex issues like health care, not so much.

But as you point out, and Alisyn your focus group with these voters was very instructive, these Trump voters, they're not going anywhere any time soon. His clash with the establishment is what they expected, what they wanted. When things don't go well, they give him pretty much a pass on that, for now. But years down the line, when he's really judged, which is when he comes before voters again, then I think they're going to ask themselves the question that voters always do, am I better off now? Do I feel like I'm more economically secure? Has he done the things that he said that he would do to help me. And if the answer is yes, they will stick with him. And if the answer is no, some of them will peel away.

CUOMO: Seems like the president would be better served by a voter panel group of those who are against him and see what's going on because he can't grow. That's his problem right now, he's locked in his base but the numbers repeat the headline time and time again. He's not expanding that base. So, President Obama's going to give his first post-election speech --

AXELROD: That's (INAUDIBLE). Let me just say one point -- let me make one point on --

CUOMO: Don't try to run away from that Obama question, though, it's coming, Axe, I'll tell you right now, it's coming.

AXELROD: No, I'm not going to run -- I'm not a -- I'm not running anyway, my friend. But on that point, there are two groups of Trump voters, the group that Alisyn spoke to and then there's the group that voted for him, not so much because they liked him but because they didn't like Hillary Clinton. He's doing much less well, according to some of these polls, with those voters. That should be a source of concern for him.

As for Obama, I think what you'll expect -- you can expect today is that he's going to address the need for these young people to get invested in community service, in organizing, in trying to change their world by getting together to solve problems. I do not think that he's going to offer a critique of his predecessor. I know people are hungry for that. If that's what they're looking for, they'll be disappointed.

What I'm looking for is the director of the Institute of Politics at the University of Chicago is to see him inspire these young people to believe that they can make a difference. And I think that he will.

CAMEROTA: That's not juicy. I know you want to see the inspirational message --

AXELROD: No, I understand that. You know, but, you know what, he --

CAMEROTA: But, please, don't bother us with that.

AXELROD: But, you know, I do think people are -- you know, there are a lot of people who would love to see him be the point of the spear in this debate with President Trump and Trump has given him ample reason to respond. But he, I know from my personal conversations with him, he believes that former presidents have a certain role, and it's not to reengage in the political wars, but to offer commentary on larger points when they're appropriate.

So, you know, I don't think he's going to plunge into this and get back in. He's run his last race. He will comment when he thinks basic principles are being abrogated and I'm sure he'll be making speeches on some of these larger issues in the -- in the months to come.

CUOMO: That sense of --

AXELROD: But don't expect him to be in there back in the ring again.

CUOMO: That sense of decorum and of leaving his administration where it was and -- that's like an atavism now, you know, because everybody is just attacking all the time. It's such a bygone on notion of restraint.

Let me ask you something. One hundred days, Trump said it mattered. He had a plan, talked about it all the time. Now says it doesn't matter. What's your take on the measure that FDR put in place? Is it still a good look at whether or not a new administration is able to get something done?

[08:50:08] AXELROD: You know, I think it's sort of an artificial construct. I do think that you get clues from the early part of an administration as to how a president's going to operate, and clearly one of the clues we've gotten here is that he, this improvisational style of Trump is not readily adaptable to governing. And when he does improvise -- and I believe, by the way, that when he said we're going to have -- we're going to do health care, we're going to get this tax -- we're going to announce our tax reform plan on Wednesday and so on, these are sort of improvisational impulses on his part, and they don't generally work out well.

CAMEROTA: All right, David, thank you very much for previewing all of that and giving us the analysis. Great to see.

CUOMO: Good for those kids at the University of Chicago, get the message from the former president.

AXELROD: Have a great day, you guys.

CUOMO: Also, a quick programming note, don't miss "America United or Divided?" A live CNN town hall with Ohio Governor John Kasich. You've got Anderson Cooper moderating tonight, 10:00 p.m., only on CNN.

CAMEROTA: So there was this terrifying moment. It was caught on dash cam. There's a little girl who falls out of the back of a moving bus there. Lucky for her, a hero was in the right place at the right time. He joins us to tell us this story, next.


[08:55:18] CUOMO: All right, it's time for "The Good Stuff." A toddler saved by a firefighter. That is a little girl, a four-year-old, that falls out of the back of a bus. Why the heck was that door open? All right, that's a question for another day.

You see this off-duty firefighter there in Arkansas, Ryan Ciampoli, a volunteer firefighter, trained EMT, driving behind the bus, stopped and ran to her rescue.

Ryan joins us now.

Thank God you were the guy in that location for that God-awful situation. When you saw that door open, and that body fall out, what did you think?

RYAN CIAMPOLI, FIREFIGHTER SAVED 4-YEAR-OLD GIRL: You know, my heart sank. That is definitely something you don't see -- in fact, that's the first time I've ever seen it in my life in person. And I just -- it didn't look real. I had to do a double take. It was definitely -- it caught me off guard.

CAMEROTA: So, Ryan, when you get to her, she was unconscious. Did she wake up in your arms?

CIAMPOLI: Yes, ma'am. When I -- when I walked over and knelt down to her, I started talking to her and she finally -- she lifted her arm up at me once she heard my voice. But when I first walked up, she was completely unconscious.

CUOMO: Now, it was important for you, you were explaining why you did what you did. Obviously you're an EMT. You're a trained first responder. Ordinarily you tell the rest of us, leave them alone when you see somebody have that kind of trauma. You felt you couldn't in that situation, why?

CIAMPOLI: Well, you know, that day -- there's a couple reasons. One, that day it was, you know, around 80 degrees, so I know that the pavement was very warm. So right there it -- you know, it's going to be doing more damage and just inflicting more pain on this poor little girl than she's already been through. Another is, you know, she fell directly in the middle of Highway 65 in Harris, Arkansas, which is a busy highway that runs through the town there. So I couldn't let her lay there and, you know, another car come and run her over, run us both over and all the other people that had stopped. So I made that split second decision to, you know, get her out of that -- that bad situation.

CAMEROTA: To pick her up and to move her. And I know that you used your car to block traffic from coming and running you guys over.

Now, we don't see the bus that she fell out of. Did it drive away? Did they not know that she -- a little girl had fallen out of the back?

CIAMPOLI: You know that -- that's been going through my head as well constantly. You know, I've been seeing this video. I play it over and over and over. It hasn't escaped my memory since this happened. But, yes, the bus -- I look up and the bus is gone. And I'm wondering, how do you not -- you know, how do you not hear it, how do you not see it? You know, I don't know? He must have been -- you know, I know -- I know the bus was filled with a lot of other schoolchildren, you know, headed to church and so, you know, that would take -- you know, he's probably tuning out, you know, a lot of kids probably screaming and yell and having a good time. So --

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh.

CUOMO: Tuning out? They -- the door open the whole time he's driving away. I mean that has to be a big part of this situation. Those doors are supposed to be locked. You're supposed to be aware. He's driving kids. I mean that's going to be part of the investigation. That's not your part of this reality.

Now we're told the girl had a broken jaw, but she's OK. Have you been in touch with her since this or her family? CIAMPOLI: I have not personally met with them yet. I definitely would

love to. I just -- I want her to heal and give her all the time she needs, you know. But I would love to reunite with them. So, you know, I've not met with them in person or anything yet, but I would love to.

CAMEROTA: Yes. All right, we'll see if we can make that happen. But I know that you have advice for other people. Not everybody, of course, is a trained EMT. Not everybody would know what to do. But, for everyone, what advice do you give them today?

CIAMPOLI: I -- like I tell everyone, I'm a big advocate, EMS, it is a passion of mine. It gets in your blood and you just can't help but help people. And I'm a natural civil servant and I always have been.

I want everybody to at least take from this something, get a -- take a first responder class, you know, take a first aid class, CPR.


CIAMPOLI: You never know when someone can be choking and you can save their life, or stop breathing and no pulse and you start CPR and -- and bring them back. You know, I just -- I urge everyone to -- to do that because there's a lot of things that happen in this crazy world, as you can see. I never imagined that that would have happened to me just driving down the road.



[09:00:02] CAMEROTA: Well, that's great, great advice, Ryan. We're so glad that you were there in that situation. Thanks for sharing it with us. And we will see if we can, obviously, get a status report on the little girl for you and for everyone.