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U.S. Navy SEAL Killed in Somalia; Delta Apologizes for Booting Family Off Plane; Health Care Bill Clears House; Obama Endorses Macron Ahead of French Election; A Decade Later Inside the Search for Madeleine McCann; Aired 10:30-11a ET
Aired May 5, 2017 - 10:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:30:23] JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: All right. We have breaking news out of the Pentagon. We just learned that a Navy SEAL is dead, killed in Somalia. We also understand that two other American service members were wounded.
CNN's Barbara Starr working her sources at the Pentagon.
Barbara, what are you learning?
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, John. This U.S. Navy SEAL killed in action about 40 miles west of Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia. Two other service members wounded. They were working with Somali army troops. They were on a mission to advise and assist them. This is a pretty routine thing, believe it or not, that U.S. special forces do inside Somalia.
When they were attacked with small arms by what the U.S. believes were elements of the al-Shabaab group, that's the terror group in Somalia that has declared its allegiance to al Qaeda. They have been operating there for years in and out of cities and the backcountry of Somalia.
The U.S. troops are part of this larger effort to try and train the Somali forces to look after their own security. This is a country that wants the U.S.'s help with this. And in fact, the Trump administration is on the cusp of really stepping up the effort in Somalia, possibly with more air strikes, possibly with additional ground forces.
But all of this underscoring the real danger that special operations forces increasingly are facing in these areas where they operate. We have recently seen them killed in Iraq, in Yemen. It's very tough business that these young Americans are asked to undertake -- John.
BERMAN: Yes. More and more engagement in more and more places does mean more and more danger.
All right. Barbara Starr at the Pentagon for us, thank you very much.
We also have breaking news out of West Virginia this morning. NTSB investigators are heading to the site of a cargo plane crash in Charleston. Two people we understand were killed there when the plane's left wing hit the runway during landing. The plane crashed into that wooded area you can see right there. The airplane was flying as a subcontractor for UPS.
But also new this morning, Delta has said I'm sorry, apologizing for throwing a family with an infant off of a plane. This is what happened when a California family was told that their child could not sit in a seat purchased for a different family member.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So we're getting kicked off this plane no matter what now?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. I told you guys at the beginning you had two options and now it's come too far.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So what are we supposed to do? I've got two infants. We have nowhere to stay. There is no more flights. What are we supposed to do? Sleep in the airport?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You should have thought about that at beginning.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, no. You should have thought about that before you oversold the flight.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: At this point, you guys are on your own.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (EXPLETIVE DELETED).
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BERMAN: All right, bleeping and looks of disbelief. The incident happened back in April. The video really just went viral this week, and obviously it comes in the wake of what happened with United Airlines and Dr. Dao. A new level of outrage across the country in how airlines are treating consumers.
Let's get the very latest on this right now. I'm joined by CNN aviation correspondent Rene Marsh.
Rene, explain to me exactly what happened here and what Delta is saying about it.
RENE MARSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. So the big picture here, John, is it's another day, another apology from yet another airline. This time it's Delta. We know that the airline kicked a family with two young children off of that overnight flight from California to Hawaii. They were already seated, as you saw in the video, and the issue was that this man's infant was in a seat that he booked under his older son's name.
Well, that older son ended up taking a different flight, an earlier flight. But the flight attendant warned the family that this was federal law and that the federal law states that the person in the seat must be the person whose name is on the ticket.
Well, again, that family got kicked off of that flight. Delta later issuing an apology, saying, "We are sorry for the unfortunate experience our customers had with Delta, and we reached out to them to refund their travel."
Again, this comes after that viral video that we saw, that passenger being dragged off of a full United Airlines flight. Delta Airlines also had another issue a few weeks ago where a man was forced off of one of its flights for using the bathroom while the plane prepared for takeoff.
All of these incidents are raising serious questions about customer service. Many airlines have announced that they've made various policy changes, everything from stopping this process of overbooking, that is Southwest.
[10:35:02] Increasing compensation. United Airlines said they'll now offer some $10,000 for anyone who has to get on a different flight because the flight is overbooked. Delta says they'll also increase compensation. All that being said, a lot of people are saying when they're seeing all of these incidents happening one after the other that it's simply just not enough.
I can tell you right here in Washington, D.C., a lot of lawmakers feel that it's just not enough. Just this week, or last week, they had a hearing on this very issue, and I can tell you, here in Washington they are considering what sort of legislation they can pass to protect consumers if the airlines aren't going to do it themselves.
BERMAN: All right, Rene Marsh for us in Washington. Another video worth taking a look at. Thanks so much, Rene.
All right, this morning, it is the Senate's turn. The Senate will take on health care after the House of Representatives passed the measure to repeal and replace Obamacare.
Coming up, we will have two economists who could not humanly disagree more. They could not humanly disagree more virulently about what is in this bill. They'll have at it, next.
[10:40:32] BERMAN: All right, the saying goes hell hath no fury like an angry economist, and this morning maybe not so much anger, but a great deal of passion over the House vote to repeal and replace Obamacare. And joining me now, Jonathan Gruber, economics professor at MIT. He's also one of the architects behind Obamacare, originally.
We're also joined by Stephen Moore, CNN senior economics analyst, former senior economic adviser to the Trump campaign.
Gentlemen, I know we have a lot to say here. We'll speak one at a time.
Jonathan, you called this bill one of the purest redistributions from the poor to the rich in one bill we've ever seen. Explain.
JONATHAN GRUBER, ECONOMICS PROFESSOR, MIT: Well, basically, the Affordable Care Act tried to have a balance set of financing mechanisms to try to allow the government to provide insurance for lowest income citizens.
What this bill does is keep in place most of the revenue cuts that were part of the Affordable Care Act but reduce a major financing increase from the Affordable Care Act, which is the tax increase on the wealthiest Americans. And literally, what this bill does is cut health care spending focused on the lowest income Americans by about $600 billion over the next decade, mostly through a tax cut, 60 percent of which benefits people who earn more than $1 million.
Look, if we want to have redistribution through a law, then that's a debate we should have, but let's not call it health care reform, let's call it what it is. It's reverse Robin Hood. It's basically saying the Republican Party doesn't like the benefit loans that people were getting. They don't like the tax increase high-income people had to face. They want to wipe out both at the same time.
BERMAN: Stephen Moore, your reaction?
STEPHEN MOORE, CNN SENIOR ECONOMICS ANALYST: Well, I'm not angry.
MOORE: Angry economist. I'm feeling pretty good today, actually. I think this was an historic achievement. I've been in Washington for 35 years. This is the first time any, in my lifetime that a major expensive entitlement program has been rolled back, which is good for the nation's finances and it's very good for the finance of --
BERMAN: But it is a redistribution -- is it, as Jonathan said, a redistribution of wealth?
MOORE: So on this issue of redistribution, look, I mean, I -- look, Jonathan is right. What Obamacare really was, was a massive redistribution bill, massive tax increases on the rich to give money to the poor. Now that doesn't work as an economic doctrine. Tax the rich, give to the poor. We've been doing that for 50 years.
The tax increases hurt the economy significantly. We saw a big reduction in business tax investment after the business tax investment taxes went up.
Jonathan, you're an economist, you know this, when you tax something, you get less of it. When you tax something less, you get more of it. But one of the reasons we want to roll back these big tax increases on investment is to get businesses to invest more in workers and salaries and equipment and so on. So that's going to be a very positive thing for the U.S. economy.
And I agree with Donald Trump, I think, ultimately, this bill will be judged on whether it reduces costs to consumers, and I believe it will. BERMAN: It's interesting. It sounds like you agree with at least the
overall concept that Jonathan is saying there, which is that the poor will lose potentially some Medicaid services and that the rich will get tax cuts.
MOORE: No, I'm not saying that. I'm saying that's what -- that's what Obamacare did. It was a redistribution bill. It took massive amounts of money from people at the top and gave to the lower-income people. That's the liberal philosophy.
BERMAN: And this fixes that in your mind.
Jonathan, obviously, this week, there were some big announcements by health care providers. We know that Iowa losing a number of its insurers, Humana dropping out nationwide, Iowa could be left with somewhat zero carriers. Aetna pulling out of Virginia.
You know, Jonathan, this is happening right now. Without action, won't it happen more?
GRUBER: Well, look, it's happening right now under President Trump. Let's be very clear last year --
BERMAN: It was happening under President Obama. It was happening under President Obama as well.
GRUBER: No, no, no. Let's be clear. Last year's premium increases were simply making up for the fact that premiums came in 20 percent below what was expected. Last year's premium increases was a one-time catch-up. And by every projection before the election, that was a one-time catch-up. Insurers were now profitable and premiums were expected to go up at normal rates this year. Only since President Trump has introduced massive uncertainty into the market through refusing to pay the cost-sharing subsidies that are part of the law, through the diddling back and forth with the mandate, is it in, is it out, et cetera, that has caused insurers to say, look, we don't need to be part of this game. The big insurers -- this is a small piece of their business. They make lots of money elsewhere.
[10:45:06] They're saying we're not going to mess around with this market when policymakers can't even tell us what's going to be going on in a year or two. So let's not pin this on Obama, OK? This is President Trump's problem and he's caused it, and if he doesn't like Obamacare and wants to replace it, that's fine, but don't burn down the house along the way. Along the way, let's keep it up until something better can come along.
BERMAN: All right. Jonathan Gruber, Stephen Moore --
MOORE: Jonathan, look, my view --
BERMAN: Quick last word, Stephen. Got to go.
MOORE: My view is that -- the house is burning down. I mean the premium's going through the roof and it's not affordable for people. It's got to be changed in a dramatic way. BERMAN: Congress dealing with it right now. Let's see who owns this
house, Stephen, when it burns down.
Jonathan Gruber, Stephen Moore, thanks so much for being with us. Appreciate it.
All right, there is a huge election, and President Obama just weighed in with an endorsement. Will this endorsement help or hurt?
Plus, let's get a first look at the markets right now. The Dow slightly lower, down about 31 points, this after a stunning jobs report. The lowest unemployment rate in 10 years. We'll have much more coming up.
[10:50:29] BERMAN: It is the final day of campaigning in one of the most closely watched elections the world has seen for some time and certainly one of the most consequential as well. And now former President Obama has weighed in with a full-throated endorsement. Of course, the last presidential candidate President Obama endorsed didn't do so well.
CNN's Melissa Bell is in Paris right now.
President Obama endorsing Emmanuel Macron. How is that being received, Melissa?
MELISSA BELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think yours was the right question a moment ago, will it help or will it hinder? It is, for a start, a most unusual intervention in another country's election, and this so close to poll on Sunday. These two very different candidates. On one hand the independent centrist, Emmanuel Macron, who's in favor of globalization in Europe and a certain continuity with all that went before, will be facing off the far right's Marine Le Pen, who wants all the opposite of that. Their policies are diametrically opposed.
Here's what Barack Obama had to say ahead of this crucial vote.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARRACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The success of France matters to the entire world. I have admired the campaign that Emmanuel Macron has run. He has stood up for liberal values. Because of how important this election is, I also want you to know that I am supporting Emmanuel Macron to lead you forward.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BELL: Now Barack Obama is extremely popular here in France, and Emmanuel Macron will have taken that as a good sign, that he was getting the support of a former president like Barack Obama. But clearly, just as we saw in the United States, we're seeing here in France as well, the fact that there are two countries emerging. We're not really looking at an election that's going to see the left fight off the right. It is pro-globalization against anti-globalization. It is continuity against change, just as we saw in the United States.
And that's part of the French electorate, that is planning to vote for Marine Le Pen, that is hearing her message of a need for change, will consider that that is simply confirmation of their suspicion that Emmanuel Macron is the candidate of the system. In this basis, in this context, that is possibly the worst brush with which you could be tied -- John.
BERMAN: All right. Two days until we'll know.
Melissa Bell in Paris, thanks so much. A lot of news happening this morning. We'll be right back.
[10:56:31] BERMAN: This week marks 10 years since Madeleine McCann vanished while on a family vacation in Portugal, just days before her 4th birthday. Millions of dollars have been poured into the search and rescue efforts, but to no avail.
CNN's Randi Kaye covered the story when it first broke and is now back with a special report that premieres tonight about the parents who are still waiting for answers.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are two witnesses who say -- independent of one another that they saw what they described as a very ugly, pock- marked, or spotty-skinned man watching apartment 5A.
RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Another witness reported having seen suspicious men on a balcony near the McCanns' apartment, just hours before Madeleine disappeared.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Meanwhile, an upstairs neighbor saw another man acting very suspiciously in the little pathway between the pool garden and apartment 5A.
KAYE: And there was more. British police released a sketch of one of the men they say had approached nearby apartments, asking residents for donations to a local orphanage.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now there was no such orphanage. So, clearly, these men were involved in some kind of a crime, possibly just burglary, but possibly something else.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BERMAN: All right, Randi Kaye is with me now.
Randi, it sounds like someone may have been watching this family. Do you think that's possible?
KAYE: I do, actually. And we certainly heard that from witnesses, from the investigators who we spoke with. You can see in that video where Apartment 5A was. We were in Portugal, in Praya Deluge, and it was on the corner so -- of that complex. So it was very exposed. You could see -- we're told people were watching them from the gate area, from across the street. The question is why would somebody have been watching them and where is she? Could she have been possibly taken as part of a botched burglary? Were they watching the complex for that? Could she have been part of a black market adoption operation maybe or even a sex trafficking operation? Those are all questions that we just don't have answers to.
BERMAN: And obviously it is 10 years. You know, a grim, got to be incredibly painful anniversary for that family. And I think the question people want to know, I mean, do investigators think it's possible that she's still alive?
KAYE: I guess the key thing that they look at when they're asked that question is we don't have a body. We have no evidence that she's dead, so they're holding out hope, of course. Scotland Yard is holding out hope. They're investigating now. They've just gotten some new funding to investigate some more. They're holding out hope that she's alive. Certainly the parents are holding out hope that she's alive.
It was just revealed this week that Kate McCann still buys Madeleine McCann Christmas presents, hoping that one day she'll return and she'll be able to give her those presents. So without a body, that's really all they have to go on. And also, experts tell us that when a child is that young, the younger they are when they're taken the less likely it is that they're killed. So that also bodes well. But of course their little Madeleine has not returned home.
BERMAN: Just a few seconds left, are they still getting new clues in the investigation?
KAYE: All the time. There are still leads. Over the 10 years, John. There's been 9,000 reported sightings of this little girl, so hopefully one of them will be right one day.
BERMAN: All right. Randi Kaye, thanks so much. Again, that special premieres tonight. The CNN special report "MISSING: MADELEINE MCCANN," tonight at 10:00 p.m. Eastern right here on CNN.
All right, thank you all so much for joining me today. I'm John Berman. "AT THIS HOUR" today with Ana Cabrera starts right now.
ANA CABRERA, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Ana Cabrera in for Kate Bolduan. Happy Friday and especially happy Friday for President Trump whose good week just gets better.