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Report: Sex Assault Survivors Worry About GOP Plan; Family With 2 Young Kids Kicked Off Delta Plane; Fox News Fight Moves to U.K. Amid Scandal. Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired May 5, 2017 - 15:30   ET


[15:30:00] JEANETTE MORELAN, SEXUAL ASSAULT SURVIVOR: Rape and sexual assaults the culture is often blamed on the victim and 95 percent of perpetrators are never brought to justice. So, I really feel like this is one more reason that sexual assault survivors feel like they can't speak out. To me, that is really concerning.

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: That's, in reading about all this, that's my worry. That women or men are hesitant to speak up and if there is even a fear of loss of coverage, that people would be reluctant to reporting a rape.

MORELAN: Absolutely.

BALDWIN: Yes. Yes.

MORELAN: That is a choice that you should never have to make. Our government and our society should be supporting survivors and empowering them. The fact that so many go and report it is because we do live in this system and health insurance is already a huge worry for people being able to afford. I feel like this is going to continue to push people to silence which absolutely shouldn't happen.

BALDWIN: Let me point this one thing out, for people who are watching, listen very closely. M.J., even if Obamacare is replaced tomorrow, insurers in 44 states will still be barred by law from considering domestic and sexual abuse a pre-existing condition and in states that don't have that law, history shows insurers don't necessarily take advantage of that loophole.

M.J. LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's right. This is going to be a complicated issue that the Senate now has to take on as well. We were talking about this in the last hour, that it was notable and it's being picked up by a lot of people, we are looking at the list of the working group, the Senate Republicans that is working on the next bill that will come out of the Senate and --

BALDWIN: No women.

LEE: Right. We are only half the country. No big deal. But the optics certainly isn't great, especially since Senate Republicans are emphasizing that they want to be very inclusive, they want to have moderates, conservatives involved in the dialogue. I'm personally surprised someone like Susan Collins wouldn't have been on that list. She's an example of someone who is female and has been very involved in the health care talks.

BALDWIN: Memo to the Senate, add a lady on that list. M.J., thank you. Jeannette, thank you so much for just coming on national TV, telling your stories and how you feel. Thank you both ladies. I appreciate both of you.

Coming up next, family with two young kids threatened with jail if they don't get off a Delta flight. The new video catching fire online. What you need to know about your passenger rights.


BALDWIN: Delta Airlines is apologizing for kicking a family with two young children off of a flight after they were in their seats. This incident happened last month. The husband recently posted the video online. At issue here was the seat occupied by the man's infant son. It was apparently booked under the name of his older son, who took an earlier flight.


DELTA FLIGHT ATTENDANT: I don't know what to tell you. I'm just trying to do the best I can. Unfortunately, he can't be there. I wish I could help you guys.

PASSENGER ON DELTA FLIGHT WITH TWO CHILDREN: What you're saying makes no sense. Is that an option for us at this point to hold the baby so we can take off? Or are they saying no? Ask them. We are getting kicked off this plane?

ATTENDANT: I told you that at the beginning.

PASSENGER: I got two infants, I have nowhere to stay. There's no more flights. What are we supposed to do, sleep in the airport? What are we supposed to do once we're off this plane?

ATTENDANT: That is not up to me.

PASSENGER: It should be.

ATTENDANT: It's not. At this point you guys are on your own.

PASSENGER: The things my kids have to have are in those bags.

ATTENDANT: We will get all your bags off, sir.

PASSENGER: Unbelievable. You guys are unbelievable. Great customer service. Awesome. Great job.


BALDWIN: Well, Delta says its quote goal is to always work with customers. They plan to reimburse the family's tickets plus additional compensation. Our next guest believes airlines should do more to inform passengers of their rights. Nice to have you on. You know, it's important to get into the details of this story. Give me a fact-check because apparently, number one, this Delta official is heard telling that it is federal policy whoever occupies the seat on the plane, it has to be the name of the person issued on that ticket. Is that true?

CHARLES LEOCHA, FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT, TRAVELERSUNITED.ORG: In this day and age, we call those alternative facts.

BALDWIN: Let's not even go there.

[15:40:00] LEOCHA: It's wrong. There's no federal rule that says you have to have your name on the seat. If you had any rule like that, Southwest Airlines would never be able to take off. It's sort of ridiculous.

BALDWIN: There was also at issue whether they could put the child in his car seat. Apparently, he was saying the child could only sleep in the car seat. Delta was saying they have rules based upon age and buying seats. Can you explain that to me?

LEOCHA: They may have rules. However, I have never heard of an airline refusing to put anybody into a car seat. I'm not sure what Delta was trying to do at the time. I think someone was just trying to get the child out of the seat and they really didn't have anything else to go on so they make up their rules. That's what consumers are faced with an awful lot. This is why there should be better notification of what the rules really are so consumers know what the heck's going on.

BALDWIN: Yes. But isn't also part of this issue, we talked about this with that crazy united dragging dr. Dao off the plane story, that was united, but flights being overbooked and listen, I fly delta a lot. I feel like they are pretty good at giving folks quite a bit of money to change flights or to be bumped for someone else. Is that just -- is that not working? What's happening here?

LEOCHA: In this case, it's not working. The guy paid for the seat. He had his infant son and should be able to sit the person there. He was told by the gate agent evidently, he could take his child on and do that. He was going along that way. Now we have a crew member who has come up with her own set of rules. So, we don't really know what the rules are but we do know for sure it is not a federal regulation. And it is not anything that the U.S. government is involved with. This is totally on Delta. It's Delta customer service and it's a Delta flight attendant making those rules.

BALDWIN: Amazing. Everyone with their cell phones now. Charlie, appreciate you. Thank you so much. Lot of people flying, as we are heading into the summer season. People do need to know their rights. Thank you, Charlie.

LEOCHA: Thanks for having me.

BALDWIN: Coming up next, the first woman to ever serve as chief usher at the white house, no longer on the job. What we are hearing from insiders about the staff shakeup.


BALDWIN: A member of the white house staff has moved on and this particular employee made history when she was hired in 2011. The white house confirms chief usher Angela Reed no longer works for the Trump administration. She was the first woman and she was the second African American to hold this chief usher position. She was actually featured in the CNN documentary called "The End, Inside the Last Days of The Obama White House."


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The staff in the executive residence, they are not political. We are part of a long-standing institution so a lot of them have had experience in working for upwards of seven administrations.

ANGELA REED, CHIEF USHER, WHITE HOUSE: What I think about most when I walk around the house is who has been here, who has done what in this particular space, because you know, there's something that I am able to walk here now when 100 years ago, a President or first lady did or other guests did or some of my ancestors did, it gives me a sense of awe. The fact that slaves built this house and I now work in this house as a leader. Something out of my wildest dreams.


BALDWIN: As chief usher, she managed the residence and the staff. The white house today in the daily briefing was asked a question about this and said that they wish her well.


SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, DEPUTY WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: She is no longer employed here at the white house, but we left on very good terms and wish her the very best, and certainly hope for great things for her in the future. However, it's not uncommon that you might have a transition of staff when a new administration comes in and it's simply nothing more than that, and we certainly wish her again the very best.


BALDWIN: With me now, Kate Anderson Brower, author of "First Women, The Grace and Power of America's Modern First Ladies." Kate, was this a surprise to you? Hearing her speak about the white house, it seemed like she was full of gratitude for having this precious job. What do you think of this?

KATE ANDERSON BROWER, AUTHOR OF "FIRST WOMEN, THE GRACE AND POWER OF AMERICA'S MODERN FIRST LADIES: Well, I have been waiting for something like this to happen for a while, because she was an Obama loyalist. They did bring her in. Some resident staffers I have interviewed said she could be difficult to work for but overall, it's kind of sad to see because it shows how this job is getting politicized. The chief usher at the white house, the resident staff, it used to be a joke among the staffers, they stay and Presidents and first ladies come and go. Now we are seeing where a chief usher who is hired by one administration is let go by another. That happened with Stephen Rochand who was hired by the Bushes and let go by the Obamas. This is another example of how partisan Washington is becoming.

BALDWIN: So, she was let go. That is what happened? I wasn't entirely sure.

BROWER: Well, the understanding is that that's what happened. In these kind of positions, you serve at the will of the President, the pleasure of the President and you are asked to resign. We don't know for sure because she hasn't talked to anyone definitively about that. In the past instances like this, this is how it's gone down.

[15:50:00] BALDWIN: Sarah Huckabee Sanders said she left on good terms, they wish her the best and it's not uncommon for transition staff to your point in a new administration, we know basic staff, I have this note basic staff stays on average of 25 years. Where does one go next after being chief usher at the white house?

BROWER: I mean, a lot of these people like the head chef, the former head florist, they go on and write books or have speaking engagements. You can go down that route. This has happened before. When Chris Emory spoke with Barbara Bush and the Clintons found out, they fired him. There is a sense of loyalty they expect from you. If they hear you say anything which I have heard that she said about whether she could work for a Republican, she wasn't sure if she could do that, when that comes up, it really bothers a sitting President and first lady. I think you can kind of understand that but it looks bad. She's the first woman to hold the job and so you have to think hopefully they will replace her with somebody who is equally ground- breaking and interesting. She has great experience. She worked in the Ritz-Carlton but she was polarizing among some staffers.

BALDWIN: Do you think they bring in someone from the Trump administration or from the Trump property?

BROWER: I mean, they certainly have a big roster of people to choose from, from their hotels. It would make sense for them to pull from people they already know and who have hospitality kind of experience. It's a very powerful, important job, though. It's not just about managing the residence. It's much more than that. And it's political now.

BALDWIN: Thank you very much.

On to this. The federal investigation into Fox News now expanded.

The allegations of sexual harassment and discrimination and retaliation against former boss Roger Ailes and former host Bill O'Reilly cost them their jobs and now the accusers are trying to make an impact on network's finances. Current CEO Rupert Murdoch is trying to buy Sky, a satellite TV giant in the U.K. And lawyers for women have accused Fox News of harassment and discrimination will travel to Britain next week to try to persuade regulators to block that acquisition, so joining me now CNN senior media and politics reporter Dylan Byers. Could these scandals cost Murdoch that mega Sky deal?

DYLAN BYERS, CNN SENIOR MEDIA AND POLITICS REPORTER: They absolutely could. No doubt about it. If you're Murdoch it feels like the walls are closing in, and they are clothing in on both sides of the Atlantic. In New York, there's the federal investigation into how Fox News handled some of the settlements that were paid out to women who had accused Roger Ailes of sexual harassment, and then, of course, on the other side of the pond in the U.K. you have this office of communications which is another sort of federal review, if you will, looking into whether or not the Murdochs are fit and proper to be owners of Sky.

Right now, the Murdochs own 39 percent of Sky. What they are going after is the other 61 percent. I would put this at top of their list of goals right now. It's the single most important media deal they are chasing. The idea that what happened at fox news over the course of the last year could get in the way of that and indeed it could must make them feel terrible. In fact, they were trying to get this deal back in 2011 and the phone hacking scandal that took place at one of their U.K. properties got in the way of it then, so, yeah, the Fox News controversies we've all been covering for last year could very much get in the way of their broader ambitions

BALDWIN: You mentioned the federal investigation. We know that President Trump and Rupert Murdoch have had a long-standing friendship. We just saw Murdoch at Trump's event here in New York and saying money donated at Murdoch's request was, quote, money well spent. Does their relationship at all complicate the DOJ investigation?

BYERS: It does and to say it's a friendship is almost understated. What we know as our reporting confirms is that the President and Rupert Murdoch talk on an almost daily basis, and when they talk Rupert Murdoch very often offers advice to the President of the United States. The idea that the same man whose company is being investigated by the DOJ has the ear of the President, is giving vision to the President, is clearly friends with the President, is extremely problematic and I'll say very quickly, I've been speaking to some lawyers today is they told me this is going to be a very big test for attorney general Jeff Sessions.

BALDWIN: Thank you.

[15:55:00] Coming up next here on CNN, house Republicans may have passed a health care bill, but it still has a long way to go before it gets to the desk of the President. A Democratic senator joins us live to talk about the battle about to play out in the Senate.


BALDWIN: Ten years ago, this week Madeline McCann vanished while on family vacation in Portugal days before her fourth birthday and one decade later millions of dollars have been spent on search-and-rescue efforts and still no sign of this little girl. CNN's Randi Kaye covered this story when it first broke sand now back and more on the parents sadly waiting for answers. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There are two witnesses who say independent of one another that they saw what they described as a very ugly pock-mocked or spotty-skinned man watching apartment 5a.

Another witness reported having seen suspicious man on a balcony near the McCann's apartment just hours before madeleine disappeared.

Meanwhile an upstairs neighbor saw another man acting very suspiciously in the little pathway between the pool garden and apartment 5A.

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. There was no such orphanage so clearly these men were involved in some kind of a crime, possibly just burglary. But possibly something else.


Watch the report tonight, "Missing Madeleine McCann," 10:00 eastern here on CNN. I'm Brooke Baldwin here in New York. Thanks so much for being with me on this Friday afternoon, but stay right here. "The Lead" with Jake Tapper starts right now.