Return to Transcripts main page


Tax Cut Wish List; New CEO of Robin Hood Foundation; Parts Unknown Premiere; Mock Makeovers for Trump's Executive Orders. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired April 27, 2017 - 08:30   ET


[08:30:00] ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: The Alternative Minimum Tax and many tax breaks. So what do you see here?

RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Look, I think the lack of detail is pretty revealing in itself. I think it gives us an idea of where this is going. There are a lot of very specific tax cuts in what the president put out. There's very little information about how they would offset that and pay for that. And I think that points in the same direction other evidence has been going, that they are moving away from the idea of permanent revenue neutral tax reform toward the idea of a temporary tax cut that would expire at the end of ten years because that's the only way they can get it through the reconciliation process that avoids the need for a filibuster in the Senate.

So even though there's a lack of information here, I think the lack of information is revealing. And it is also telling that the principle pay for that they come up with is eliminating the deductibility of state and local taxes --

CAMEROTA: In blue states.

BROWNSTEIN: In -- which hits blue states hardest. As I said this morning, almost two-thirds of all of that deduction was claimed by taxpayers in states that Hillary Clinton won. The question will be whether you can get the Republican from those blue states to vote for it. Peter King gave you an indication that that's not going to be an easy task.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Well, but that depends on the sensitivity of your constituency. I mean we should be careful not to discount the political potency of saying tax cut --

BROWNSTEIN: Oh, no, I think -- I think they're --

CUOMO: Saying to individuals, we're going to double your standard deduction.


CUOMO: Not just for kids.


CUOMO: Your standard deduction.

BROWNSTEIN: No, no -- I think -- I think -- I think the most likely outcome here is that -- is that they -- I think this -- this says to me, as other evidence has said, it's going to be almost impossible for them to find offsets to make a truly revenue neutral tax cut that would offset all of the reductions that they want to push through. And that means you kind of go back to page one of what unified Republican control of government usually means, a tax cut, even if it has to be temporary, to get within the reconciliation.

CAMEROTA: Right. But --

BROWNSTEIN: So they may cut -- you know, we have a $500 billion a year deficit. There are going to be some Republicans who worry about that, but not enough to stop them from cutting taxes.

CAMEROTA: Is that right, because that was my next question, deficit be damned? I mean remember the deficit hawks and the debt hawks and (INAUDIBLE). What happened?

BROWNSTEIN: Yes, I remember that. I remember when Allen Greenspan, in 2001, as the chair of the Fed, said the big risk after Bill Clinton left office was that we were paying down the national debt too fast and then we did the Bush tax cut.

You know, there's another part of this debate that I think is going to be interesting. Ronald Reagan cut taxes, got about 14 million jobs. Bill Clinton raised taxes, got 23 million jobs over eight years. George W. Bush cut taxes a lot, had about 1.2 million jobs over eight years. President Obama raised taxes, had almost ten times as many private sector jobs as George W. Bush did in his eight years. You look at that and you say, it's hard to pinpoint taxes as the key variable in the rates of economic growth, job growth and income growth over the last four two-term presidents we've had two who have raised taxes and punitively they create a lot more jobs than the two who cut taxes.

CUOMO: But people like tax cuts.

BROWNSTEIN: I understand.

CUOMO: Nobody cares about the deficit. We all talk about it. Yet it's always there and goes up. So --

BROWNSTEIN: No, but as you said this morning -- as you said this morning, Chris, the one way in which tax cuts can become a negative is that if they become linked to cuts in government. So the people like --

CUOMO: An offset of service.

BROWNSTEIN: Medicare is the one. Medicare is the one.

CUOMO: I'm with you. And, look, it's also not a coincidence the timing. Here we are right up on the banner of 100 days. The president has said it's a meaningless standard, but he's coming out with a lot of things to try and impress before he gets to 100 as well. Everybody's got a take on what the 100 days means for Trump, including "The Simpsons." They released an online video. Here's a sample.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am not replacing him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Don't wrinkle the suit.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A hundred days in office, so many accomplishments, lowered my golf handicap, my Twitter following increased by 700, and, finally, we can shoot hibernating bears. My boys will love that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sir, here's a new bill that you must read immediately. It lowers taxes for only Republicans.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can't Fox News read it and I'll watch what they say?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, you have to read it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The new Supreme Court justice Ivanka (ph), takes Ruth Bader Ginsburg's seat on the bench.

You can buy Ivanka's robe with gavel earrings for only 1,000 rubles.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You said you'd replace me with Garland.


CAMEROTA: We missed the part where Marge reaches into her hair to grab her pills that she needs.

BROWNSTEIN: Yes. You know, I -- famously during Vietnam, Lyndon Johnson supposedly said, if I've lost Walter Cronkite, I've lot mid- America. Do you think Donald Trump is sitting there today saying, if I've lost Homer Simpson, I've lost mid-America? Although, in the video he calls (ph) -- he calls (ph) Homer Simpson but not Marge Simpson.

CUOMO: Simpson says, give him time. That's right.

BROWNSTEIN: Which is actually a pretty accurate reflection of where we are. So maybe -- you know, maybe we'll get macaroni (ph) on as a, you know, political analyst as well.

CAMEROTA: Ron, thank you.

BROWNSTEIN: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Great to have you here.

CUOMO: All right, so our next guest on NEW DAY is a combat veteran, a Rhodes Scholar and an author. The non-profit organization Robin Hood Foundation naming its new CEO. We're going to talk with Wes Moore about his plans to fight poverty, next.

CAMEROTA: Plus, a dramatic race against time to save two men when a car goes up in flames. We have this incredible rescue to show you ahead.

[08:35:03] CUOMO: That's our "Good Stuff."


CUOMO: The Robin Hood Foundation known in New York as the largest poverty fighting organization, it has a simple mission, to improve the living standards for millions of low-income folks. How do they do it? Well, let's talk to the man at the center. The organization's new leader, war veteran, Rhodes Scholar, youth advocate, author. Wes Moore joins us now.


WES MOORE, CEO, ROBIN HOOD: Thank you so much.

CUOMO: So --

CAMEROTA: Underachiever.

CUOMO: The gala is well known, the Robin Hood Event, and the money that comes in is tremendous. And I've always seen it as a reflection of the need. What is the need right now in terms of what Robin Hood is trying to address?

MOORE: Well, I think the need is that there are, in New York alone, 1.8 million New Yorkers that are currently living in poverty. And we're talking concentrated, generational, concrete poverty. And then millions of other New Yorkers that are right on that cusp.

The goal and what we want to be able to do is make sure that they are not forgotten in this bigger, broader conversation. That when we're having these conversations about what type of society are we going to create, that those people who oftentimes have been left out of those conversations, that they are included and know that they are not alone in our focus in making sure their lives can be improved.

[08:40:13] CAMEROTA: So what's the answer to fighting poverty? I mean do you just give people money and, you know, food stamps and make sure that they're not falling through the cracks and getting into sort of a catastrophic situation, or do you try to have all sorts of training programs and other things?

MOORE: Well, I think -- I think the answer is all the above, right? I think the challenge is, is that poverty is a holistic problem. You know, so we -- you can't talk about education without also talking about housing and transportation and health and all the other things that contribute to this larger problem of poverty. See, we have to come up with holistic solutions to a holistic problem.

But the other thing is this, is that we understand that both -- you know, at Robin Hood and my commitment in terms of working with partners is the idea that philanthropy alone will not fix what policies have created. That there are policies that have to be thought about when it comes to really moving people out of poverty. CUOMO: Wes, why did you want to do this? I mean you could do anything that you want to do. Why do you believe that this is an important place to be, especially right now?

MOORE: Well, I think that Robin Hood, both in New York and on a national scale, is actually at an important place and has an important voice in this fight. You know, Robin Hood is not new to this fight. Robin Hood is almost 30 years old and has put over $2.5 billion into this fight of poverty. And the average donation at Robin Hood is $133. So we have an army of people, 360,000 people, who are involved and donating and supporting Robin Hood. But, Robin Hood is at a unique time, particularly right now, because it's never been easy being poor in this country. It is increasingly difficult being poor in this country.

CAMEROTA: Why is that?

MOORE: Well, because I think we're watching basic fabrics of our social safety net that are being pulled. We're watching -- we're watching single parents. We're watching people who are returning from prison. We're watching kids who are -- who are attending schools that are as disinterested in them as they are interested in the school. We're watching so many things that we hold on to that are truest core American values that are now being questioned. Disillusionment of communities at all-time highs. That's what we have to combat.

CUOMO: What do you see in the political climate right now? What concerns you?

MOORE: Well, first, the tone. The tone and the fact that there seems to be this continued retreat to corners and boundaries and we're finding fewer and fewer people who are willing to understand that the solutions and the rhetoric are forgetting about people who are left on the outside.

I think the other thing that is really concerning to me is how we're thinking about budgets. You know, if anyone shows me what they spend their money on every month, you also then going to show me what you care about, right? You show me your personal budget, you're showing me what you care about.

Well, government is no different. You show me what you spend money on. You show me what you cut. You're also showing me who and what it is that you care about. I came from communities. You know, I spent -- I spent much of my childhood in both the Bronx and in Baltimore. Two communities that continually have not just been chronically neglected, but the worst part about it is that we've known it. We've lived in the communities and communities where we know that we're not at the front of the conversation. That not just has a structural impact on us, it has a psychological impact on us. And that's the thing that is most dangerous to me is that we're finding increasing parts of our population who just psychologically feel completely disengaged.

CAMEROTA: Yes or no, are you running for office at some point?

MOORE: I'm running the Robin Hood Foundation, and that's what I'm excited about. Robin Hood really has a unique conversation and a unique role to play in this fight because Robin Hood can serve as a convener, as a cajoler, as a distributor of funds, but also as an amazing importer and exporter of good ideas, right? If it's working in New York, let's bring it elsewhere. And if it's working elsewhere, let's bring it to New York, right?

CUOMO: You know, Wes can talk the talk, but he's deciding to walk the walk instead --


CUOMO: Being at the Robin Hood Foundation. Good luck with it.

CAMEROTA: Wes Moore --

MOORE: Bless you.


MOORE: Thank you so much. I'm so excited.

CAMEROTA: Great to talk to you. Thanks so much for sharing it with us.

MOORE: Thanks, you guys. Thank you. Thank you.

CUOMO: You're welcome here to discuss these issues going forward. They're only going to get bigger.

MOORE: That's exactly right. That's exactly right.

CAMEROTA: And stick around, because up next Anthony Bourdain, he's going to be here to talk about the new season of "Parts Unknown."

CUOMO: Hit him up for a donation.

CAMEROTA: Yes. Where is he headed? It looks like someplace cold. That's next.


[08:47:57] CAMEROTA: CNN's award-winning original series "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" kicks off its ninth season on Sunday and it begins with a look at Los Angeles and the people and food often overlooked.


ANTHONY BOURDAIN, "PARTS UNKNOWN": One in ten Angelinos are undocumented. One in ten. Think about that number for a while. That's who's here now. Contemplate, if you will, what would happen if anywhere near 10 percent of the workforce were no longer here.


CAMEROTA: Joining us now is the man with the coolest job in the world, Anthony Bourdain. Great to have you here.


CAMEROTA: That's a staggering number.

BOURDAIN: Well, you know, we've done an L.A. show before in which we stayed entirely within the Korean community. This time we thought we'd go back and pretended that no one, other than Mexicans and Chicanos live in L.A. It was a huge and very important population, and part of the culture, and we wanted to see -- kind of ask the question, how Mexican is L.A. and how Mexican are Chicanos, because there's a lot of question there on how Mexican are you, Mexican identity, and then addressed the really serious question that popped up as we were shooting, what is the Morrissey thing. Morrissey is really big in the Chicano community.

CAMEROTA: Get out of here. Are you kidding?

BOURDAIN: And it's sort of cracked the code for us trying to -- the question of particularly Chicano identity was asking people --

CAMEROTA: Morrissey, the singer --


CAMEROTA: The musician is really --


CAMEROTA: From The Smiths -- is huge in the Chicano?

BOURDAIN: They respond really powerfully to these songs of displacement and -- and loss and national, you know, identity.

CAMEROTA: Despair. I mean Morrissey can be dark.

BOURDAIN: You know, do you identify -- where do you -- where is home?

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh, that's pretty fascinating.


CAMEROTA: And were people reluctant -- I mean given that you talk to people who are, you know, undocumented, were people reluctant to talk to you on camera?

BOURDAIN: I mean we were really careful about who we were talking to. It was really not as much about documented or undocumented labor as it is look how absolutely vital, essential and, you know, part of our cellular tissue Mexicans, Mexican culture, Mexican cuisine, Mexican music, particularly in California.

[08:50:12] CAMEROTA: Is there interesting food that we don't know about happening in L.A.? BOURDAIN: I think -- well, it's -- it's -- every year the L.A. food

scene gets better and better. But I think what modern Mexican chefs are doing now is some of the most exciting stuff in all of histronomy (ph) worldwide.

CAMEROTA: Is that right? Like give us a little taste.

BOURDAIN: Mexican chefs at high end restaurants in Mexico and in California who, instead of going to France to study, studies with other emerging modern Mexican chefs and who are giving the kind of respect and attention to tradition, deeply complex Mexican sauce and ingredients that they have always deserved.

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh. OK, tell us where you're going for the rest of this season now that -- a disparate panoply on your plate?

BOURDAIN: Among others, Oman, which I think people will be fascinated by, a little explored and really tremendously interesting and beautiful country.

CAMEROTA: What's the headline for Oman? What do you find there?

BOURDAIN: Mountains, beaches, the empty quarter (ph), the desert and -- a really unusually or particularly tolerant form of Islam that's nearly non-sectarian and is very -- I would say the next big tourist destination should be Oman.

CAMEROTA: Well, that's fascinating. You went to one of my favorite places in the world, Portugal.

BOURDAIN: Portugal's great, of course.

CAMEROTA: It is great. So special.

BOURDAIN: Yes, beautiful.

CAMEROTA: I mean and sort of off the beaten path, you know? Lots of people go to Madrid or Barcelona or Italy, of course. It's not -- not everybody goes to Portugal.

BOURDAIN: Yes, and we went to Porto (ph), not Lisbon (ph), and explored there. And then Antarctica. I'm looking forward to that show.

CAMEROTA: OK. So what -- I mean the -- that is not a foodie mecca. What were you doing in Antarctica.

BOURDAIN: The sub culture down there. The people who choose to go down there and live in total darkness during the winter for six months or, you know, constant sun in really, really difficult conditions year after year after year, to support a relatively small group of elite scientists who are collecting data and information in the pursuit of pure science and knowledge, something in sort of out of fashion these days.

CAMEROTA: Totally. And what do they eat? BOURDAIN: It's, you know, it's essentially -- it's like a mining camp

or a college, you know, cafeteria. You know, it's not -- there's not a single green leaf or growing thing. People talk about fresh vegetables down there like with this frighteningly lustful look on their faces. They call them freshies. Do you have any freshies?

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh.

BOURDAIN: But amazing people. I mean a really extraordinary and unusual group of people who, from all walks of life, who go down there to support these scientists and work really, really hard.

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh, Tony, it sounds great. Thanks so much for previewing it with us. Can't wait to see all of that.

And you can join us this Sunday night for the season nine premiere of "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown," 9:00 p.m., only on CNN.

"The Good Stuff" is next.


[08:57:03] CUOMO: All right, let's get some "Good Stuff" going here.

Dramatic dash cam video of a car on fire. How is that "The Good Stuff"? Because of the rescue. You got two men trapped in there. An officer races to the car. Look closely. Another man on the driver's side. That's Nathanial Boyer (ph), concerned citizen, dragging out the driver. Listen to this.


NATHANIAL BOYER: The driver, he kept saying his passenger's name, I guess, to see if he was all right. But, yes, that was it. The other one, he was unconscious.


CUOMO: The other one. That means Nathanial hopped back into action. This time, he helped the officer get that passenger out. Both men survived. And we tell you these stories not to recommend that you run into a burning car, but to know that you have fellow Americans out there who are willing to put their lives on the line for each other.

CAMEROTA: Right. They are built of a different stock than the average person.

Meanwhile, President Trump issuing a series of executive orders and now there is a way to give them your own personal touch. CNN's Jeanne Moos explains.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): President Trump rarely seems happier than when he's signing executive orders.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Anybody want to watch me sign?

MOOS: And he's getting lots of practice.

TRUMP: We're very proud of this one.


MOOS: He'll have signed more executive orders in his first 100 days than any president since World War II.

TRUMP: Doesn't get much bigger than that.

MOOS: Though he used to bash President Obama for doing it.

TRUMP: And he goes around signing all these executive orders. It's a basic disaster. You can't do it.

MOOS: Oh, yes, he can.

TRUMP: So do we have the executive order, please.

MOOS: But holding up an executive order can leave the president holding the bag. Make that the fox or the panda or the microwave. At the Twitter account "Trump Draws," the president draws like a kid and spells like one, too. Often the drawings relate to the news. For instance, when the president informed China's leader over dessert that U.S. missiles had been launched against Syria --

TRUMP: And we had the most beautiful piece of chocolate cake that you've ever seen.

MOOS: That resulted in this.

"New York Magazine" says an L.A. visual effects artist, who wants to remain anonymous, told the magazine the Twitter account wrote itself when he saw the leader of the free world holding up paper.

MOOS (on camera): There's even a meme generator that lets you create your own executive orders.

MOOS (voice-over): For instance, you could decree, grab them by the you know what jokes shall be banned. Or after an audience in Berlin dissed his daughter, hissing at Ivanka Trump shall be punishable by flogging. So the next time the president holds up one of those executive orders, blowing his own horn, that order could keep on trucking who knows where.

Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.


CUOMO: I live trucks. Everybody agrees with that.

[09:00:00] CAMEROTA: I'm glad people are channeling their creativity in such ways.

CUOMO: All right. Time for "NEWSROOM" with Poppy Harlow and John Berman.

Good morning, my friends.

POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, you two. Have a great day.