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North Korea Releases Video of Missile Test; Trump Set to Leave on Foreign Trip; Privacy Group Sues Trump's Election Panel. Aired 6- 6:30a ET
Aired July 5, 2017 - 06:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Together we are facing the threat of the reckless and brutal regime in North Korea.
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: U.S. officials calculate this is likely an ICBM.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We need to know what the strategy is of how we're going to deal with this.
PHIL MUDD, CNN COUNTERTERRORISM ANALYST: The president may be realizing that his options in this world are very limited.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's going to take a worldwide effort to get North Korea to stop what they're doing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Any patriot ought to care about the foreign interference. It is very conspicuous that this president has chosen to deny it and not to discuss it with Russian officials.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our relationship with Russia is not different from any other country.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I guess I wish he treated Vladimir Putin more like he treats CNN.
ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: All right. We want to welcome our viewers in the United States and around the world. This is NEW DAY. It's Wednesday, July 5, 6 a.m. here in New York.
And on the starting line, North Korea releasing new video appearing to show the successful launch of its first intercontinental ballistic missile. The Pentagon confirming it was an ICBM. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson saying the U.S. will never accept a nuclear armed North Korea amid calls for global action. The question is, what will the U.S. do to make good on that commitment?
The immediate answer: the U.S. and South Korea conducting joint military exercises. The U.N. Security Council is convening an emergency session today at the request of the U.S. ambassador, Nikki Haley, in response to the regime's most alarming provocation to date.
ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: All this as President Trump heads to Europe in roughly two hours for the second foreign trip of his presidency. It's the G-20 summit, and all eyes will be on his first face-to-face encounter with Russia's President Vladimir Putin. This is an official bilateral meeting. It is not an informal aside.
The president also expected to face tough questions with some of the U.S.'s closest allies. So we have all of this covered for you, starting with CNN's Barbara Starr, live at the Pentagon.
What's the latest, Barbara?
STARR: Good morning.
Well, North Korea now issuing more video of that intercontinental ballistic missile launch showing the world that more of what it's got; and it may have caught the U.S. in just a little bit by surprise. The initial U.S. announcement was it was a shorter-range missile.
Then they went back and looked at all the data and spent most of July Fourth trying to figure out exactly what had happened. Then issuing a statement, yes, this was a North Korean ICBM, a missile capable of hitting the United States. This is exactly what the Pentagon, secretary of defense said North Korea would not be allowed to have.
So what happens now? Well, late yesterday, the Pentagon came back with its own Korean weapons systems firing off the East Coast of South Korea. Very much as you look at that U.S. video, a message back north.
This is a U.S. system called ATACMS. But what it really is a missile that can fire about 200 miles deep into North Korea. This is a missile in combat that could be used to take out North Korean infantry, air defense sites, communications nodes, fixed missile launchers.
So it's very calculated to send that message to North Korea that we, too, also have missiles we can reach deep inside your country. But the Pentagon says it's trying to avoid escalation. The real question now is what happens next -- Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: It sure is, Barbara. We'll be exploring that all morning.
Meanwhile, amid the North Korean tension, President Trump heads to Europe in roughly two hours for the second foreign trip of his presidency. He starts in Poland before moving on to the G-20 summit in Germany, where all eyes will be on his first face-to-face encounter with Vladimir Putin. It's an official, bilateral meeting, a bilat, as they call it. It is not an informal pull-aside.
CNN's Suzanne Malveaux is live at the White House for us with what all of this means -- Suzanne.
SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Alisyn. Well, you're right. It's less than two hours from departure time.
President Trump will first be heading to Poland, his first stop of his European trip, and this is a trip, an overseas excursion, that has now taken even more importance in light of that North Korean nuclear test.
MALVEAUX (voice-over): President Trump departing on his second international tour, one day after the Pentagon confirmed that North Korea launched an intercontinental ballistic missile, one that analysts say could reach Alaska.
North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un taunting the United States, saying the launch was a Fourth of July present to the Trump administration. As the U.S. responds with both a military and diplomatic show of force, calling for an emergency session at the United Nations Security Council to be held today. Followed by a strongly worded statement from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, stressing that global action is required to stop a global threat and declaring that the U.S. will enact stronger measures against the North Korean regime.
Tillerson's hardline stance in stark contrast to this terse 23-word statement, following Pyongyang's missile launch in April.
H.R. MCMASTER, NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR: The president has made clear to us that he will not accept a -- a nuclear power in North Korea.
MALVEAUX: North Korea's aggression, likely to dominate discussion during this weekend's G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, including his first official bilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, and his second meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Putin and Xi joining diplomatic forces and releasing their own plan to defuse tensions with North Korea after a meeting in Moscow Tuesday. Calling for a moratorium on nuclear and missile tests while also urging the United States and South Korea to stop conducting joint military exercises and specifically condemning the deployment of U.S. missile defense systems in the region.
The White House tells CNN there is no official agenda for President Trump's meeting with Putin. Although pressure is mounting for Trump to directly address Russia's interference in the 2016 election, though, officials say it's unlikely.
REP. ADAM SMITH (D), WASHINGTON: What is the Trump administration's strategy for countering all of this Russian aggression? They don't have one.
MALVEAUX: President Trump also set to meet with skeptical European leaders seeking reassurance about America's commitment to NATO, after President Trump chose not to affirm his support for the alliance in May.
TRUMP: Twenty-three of the 28 member nations are still not paying what they should be paying, and what they're supposed to be paying for their defense.
MALVEAUX: The president's unpopularity in the region already sparking protests, with thousands expected to converge on Hamburg during the summit.
MALVEAUX: Many Europeans are also upset with the Trump administration's decision for the U.S. to pull out of the climate -- the Paris climate agreement, and that we have heard from the Chinese government's press agency just yesterday, saying that Russia and China will move forward, pledging to implement that agreement anyway -- Chris, Alisyn.
CUOMO: All right, Suzanne. There are plenty, a lot of issues on the table. Let's bring on the -- in the panel and discuss what this trip will look like. CNN Politics reporter, editor at large Chris Cillizza; CNN military analyst Colonel Cedric Leighton; and CNN political commentator Errol Louis.
So this is the second trip. It seems to be kind of shrouded, Errol, in a little bit of a mystery about what the agenda is with whom and at what time. It all centers around a legit meeting, the G-20, but how do you see the stakes here?
[06:05:06] ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, the stakes are very high. We do not know what principled realism means. That's the title that the administration has given to its foreign policy in some broad sense. We don't know what the president is going to do as far as translating what he has said as the need for better relationships with the -- with the Russians in order to fight is, how does that translate into a face-to-face discussion?
We know from his Oval Office conversation with the foreign minister that he feels a great deal of pressure because of these questions around the election. Well, what does that mean now? That pressure, if anything, has intensified since then. How will that manifest itself? Will he be transparent about it? What kind of conversation are we going to see him have about these very important domestic issues?
And the fact that McMaster said he often will sort of just kind of freelance in these sort of settings doesn't give, you know, us a great deal of insight or, frankly, comfort that he's going to do something that is in keeping with sort of an orderly, strategic process of advancing foreign policy. It may just be kind of the politics of the moment.
CAMEROTA: So politics of the moment, Colonel, all that leads us to North Korea. So this has now, obviously, taken center stage. This is what global leaders will have to be dealing with. Colonel, when we had you on yesterday, I know that you were hoping against hope that this would not be an intercontinental missile. Now it has been confirmed by the U.S. that it was. So now what?
COL. CEDRIC LEIGHTON, CNN MILITARY ANALYST: Well, this is really the game changer that people have been waiting for, you know, with bated breath, so I think what we're seeing here is a situation where North Korea has basically put its cards on the table and said, these are the things that we're going to do. We have known that they were going to do this. It was just a question of time.
Now the remaining question is, can they actually nuclearize this intercontinental ballistic missile? So with that, that is really the destabilizing factor for at least East Asia, obviously, the Korean Peninsula, but it can also affect the relationships all around the world.
So President's Trump -- President Trump's challenge is going to be to really get China and Russia to help box in North Korea, but so far there's basically no leverage, because the Chinese want to keep North Korea exactly the way it is.
They don't want a stream of refugees coming out of North Korea, should that regime collapse, they don't want to see anything like a German unification, and it looks even less likely they're going to be able to convince the Chinese or the Russians to go along with any kind of moderating force on the Korean Peninsula.
CUOMO: So Chris, that then raises the issue of whether or not this missile changes the game. Because to this point, we've had the Trump administration try to advance the posture on North Korea from where the Obama administration was. They ratcheted up the rhetoric, no more, no tolerance, no that.
Then they came out with that terse little statement: "We've said enough; we won't say anything else."
So now the only thing that seems to have changed is they have a different munition, North Korea, but does that change the politics or the possibilities for what the United States can do to make good on its new, tough talk?
CHRIS CILLIZZA, CNN POLITICS CORRESPONDENT AND EDITOR AT LARGE: Well, yes. I mean, that's the question. Errol, I thought, makes the point, which is what's different? What does saying the era of strategic patience actually mean from a strategic military perspective? Because at the moment, what we've done as it regards North Korea is talk quite tough, but they do not appear to be fazed by it, right?
I mean, this is clearly a provocation, clearly timed around both our Independence Day as well as this G-20 summit, and I don't know the answer to what Donald Trump will do once provoked. We know what he does once provoked sort of domestically. He punches back. That's his thing.
I don't know what he'll do from a foreign policy perspective, Chris, because frankly, look, when you elect a guy who has not had any previous experience in elected office or in the military, first person ever, we don't really know. Donald Trump has not outlined and did not really outline, beyond we're going to be tougher with them, what he would do with North Korea. And so we don't have a policy, per se. I'm not sure we get one this -- the rest of this week, but I do think
at some point if your brand is built on this idea that there was too much talking before, there was too much tolerance of this stuff before. There is somewhat of an onus on you to say, "OK, we're going to do things differently." What are those things we're going to do differently beyond just talk?
CAMEROTA: Well, there's an emergency meeting being called at the U.N. ambassador to the U.N., Nikki Haley, tweeted this yesterday at 5 p.m.: "Spending my Fourth in meetings all day, #ThanksNorthKorea."
[06:10:03] I mean, that's an interesting tone. Sort of Trump-like, quite frankly.
ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Sure.
CAMEROTA: But what can she do?
LOUIS: Well, she can do what the U.S. always has committed to up until now, which is to sort of say, "Diplomacy is our strongest weapon. They have missiles, we have diplomacy. We have sort of morality on our side. We have ethics on our side."
The fact that this principled realism of this administration has sort of thrown aside human rights, you know, at a minimum, he sort of discards an important card that he could have played.
So I mean, yes, you'll have the Security Council. We'll hear all of the usual talk about the need to keep stability, keep a denuclearized region in place and to have more discussion, but that's exactly what Trump said he wasn't going to do. That there wasn't going to be any more patience; there wasn't going to be any more talking.
So it will be, if not an empty exercise, a very brief one, I would think.
CUOMO: But you know, look, as the president continues his education curve, he said the same thing about health care. Actually, things don't change. He changes his reckoning of them as he has to come to grip with reality.
So Colonel, you know, on health care, the president said, more complicated than people thought. No, more complicated than he knew at the time. Similarly, you just had China and Russia come out and condemn the U.S. military exercises with South Korea. That's not showing the kind of progress that we hoped for in this situation, but it does show the reality.
So as the reality here sinks in, you can talk all you want. North Korea is going to keep doing what it does. What are the potential options now with this meeting with Russia? They say North Korea will be on the table. Where can those talks go?
LEIGHTON: Chris, that's a great question. I think the real answer is going to be we have to recognize that China and Russia are, in essence, combining forces here. They've done that before. We're going to go all the way back to the Korean War, and they obviously had combined forces at that time.
For right now, what President Trump will need to do is he'll need to focus on how he can best leverage their abilities with North Korea and keep everything contained. What does that mean?
Well, I think things like the military exercise, the anti-missile defense exercise that they held in South Korea, that is a start. Those are the kinds of things that, in essence, back up the rhetoric with force. That is, unfortunately, I think what President Trump is going to find he is confined to, and that will I think change his outlook and make him realize that, in fact, strategic politics, geo- strategy is more complicated than he first realized.
CILLIZZA: And by the way, just quickly, the colonel makes the right point, which is -- and this is true on a number of domestic issues and now true on foreign policy, that campaign promises made by Donald Trump don't often reflect governing realities.
The idea that "Well, we're just going to handle the North Korea thing, and they'll understand we're more serious because I'm Donald Trump, not Barack Obama." If there were simple solutions, other presidents would have taken them, right. I mean, this is -- these are not easy matters. It's like health care here -- here stateside.
If there was a simple conservative solution to solve health care, some conservative leader would have already proposed it. The reality of the situation is, rhetorically you can talk about how we'll solve all these things, but there is a reason they have not been solved because, particularly as it relates to North Korea, there are a number of geopolitical interests that simply do not align with ours, and we can't just make people do things that they don't believe is in their interest to do.
CAMEROTA: All right. Panel, thank you very much for all of those insights.
CUOMO: We have another big story for you this morning. For all of the realities about the Russian interference during the election, that's not where the president's attention has been in terms of looking at our election system. He has a voter fraud commission. You remember this, the 3 million illegal vote that he leaned on so heavily to explain the popular election outcome.
Well, what's going on with this commission? Is it just a political move to substantiate those baseless claims? Why are states refusing to turn over data, and why is the man heading up the commission now accused of ethics violations? All those answers ahead.
[06:17:58[ CAMEROTA: President Trump's voter fraud commission is hitting some legal hurdles, you could say. A privacy group has filed suit, a lawsuit trying to block the administration's request for states to turn over a whole host of personal information of registered voters. This comes as 44 states refuse to comply with at least some of the commission's requests. Back with us now is the panel. We have CNN's Chris Cillizza, and
Errol Louis, and let's also bring in Bloomberg News White House reporter Shannon Makepeace. Great to see all of you.
Shannon, what's going on here? Why does the White House seem to set up these things that then, immediately, there are lawsuits launched against? It seems that they could have done some research to figure out how they could ask questions, for some sort of voter information that's public, that wouldn't run afoul of the law.
SHANNON MAKEPEACE, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, BLOOMBERG NEWS: It does remind you almost of the travel ban, where people are asking themselves, could a lawyer have looked at this, a few lawyers? Maybe you could have bounced this off the secretary of state first.
But there is this desire in this White House to move fast, shoot from the hip, and they keep sort of going out of their way to step on these various land mines that, once again, create a stir of controversy, create concern among a lot of people, including members in their own party, and they find themselves having to clean up them rather than talking about the things they really would like to be talking about, like the president's agenda.
CUOMO: Well, Errol, the problem here, though, you have -- you can have problem with Social Security numbers, the last four digits. That's going to be -- we have a secretary of state on from Missouri later today. He's saying his law compels him to show this information, but it doesn't. He's got a legal problem.
Your bigger problem is political. We've seen this before, during the Bush era. They went after this farce of illegal votes, and it led to all these prosecutors quitting. You had Attorney General Alberto Gonzales wound up resigning over this, but the cases weren't there to be made. Is there a second line to this story in terms of what this commission is about other than the obvious, which is trying to put meat on the bones of a B.S. allegation.
[06:20:07] LOUIS: Well, that's right. They're trying to put meat on the bones of a B.S. allegation. They're trying, I think, also to sort of -- sort of show us that they can move quickly. This is done by executive order and, you know, as Shannon points out, they move so quickly they, obviously, didn't really sort of look at it because it's a relatively narrow point that they're sort of getting jammed up on here, which is that they're supposed to issue a privacy impact statement. Just show us you thought about what the implications for privacy would be. They didn't bother to do that. Hence the lawsuit.
And then there is this question about voter suppression being really sort of the end goal of all of this, and there's a strong whiff of it in all of this, because if you stop and think about it, you look at how the thing was put together, in such haste, you look at the things that, if they're asking for, and the reason why they're asking for it, things like party affiliation, which really have nothing to do...
CUOMO: They're saying -- they're saying it's about stopping voter fraud, but these efforts go to voter suppression? LOUIS: Absolutely. Absolutely. Because this, in some respects, I
think the advocates that are calling it suppression or the prelude to suppression have a point, which is that this is intended to sort of put up this sort of cloud of wrongdoing, which will then give individual states, which is where elections are really controlled anyway, give them the predicate to sort of say, you know, no more early voting, you know, or we're not going to accept all kinds of different I.D. We're going to make it harder and harder for people to register and get their votes counted.
This seems to be really kind of what the end goal is, and, of course, Chris Kobach's personal history sort of leads you to conclude that this is something that he's been associated with all along.
CAMEROTA: But Chris, very quickly, I mean, the strange thing about this cloud of suspicion about whether or not there's vast voter fraud is that we've had many secretaries of state...
CILLIZZA: There isn't.
CAMEROTA: Right. We've had that -- these are the people who would know. These are the people in the states who control the voting and whether it's fraudulent or whether it's, you know, honest.
CUOMO: And they're Republicans and Democrats.
CAMEROTA: Absolutely. And they all say, we don't have it in our state. We don't see it.
CILLIZZA: According to the data, this is a solution in search of a problem. I mean, there's no other way to put it, Alisyn.
There's -- there's been extensive studies done, not one, not partisan, extensive studies done of elections and alleged voter fraud. And the simple fact is, is that to the extent that they found mistakes they're almost always, 99.99 percent of the time attributable to human error, that there is no malicious intent here.
This has been something that Republicans talked about before Donald Trump, but it is something that Donald Trump -- and this is true with a lot of things -- Donald Trump has brought more light to, the 3 to 5 million people that voted illegally. That claim that is just not factually accurate in the 2016 election.
So again, this is -- there is -- it is important to note this. There has never been a study that has suggested there is widespread voter fraud in elections. There just hasn't been. When you have hundreds of millions of votes cast, there are going to be some errors.
You know, 65, 70 million votes, there's going to be errors here. There's a ballot -- a series of ballots are misread. Things are left out, but it has never been proven or come close to being proven that this is in some way, again, malicious, intended. And that's what -- go away from the oddness of the request -- some of the requests for data from Chris Kobach. The broader thing here is, what is the problem we're trying to solve
for? Because it doesn't seem like, based on the objective data, there is this problem.
CUOMO: You think you would want to deal with the problem you have all these eligible voters in this country that don't vote. You'd think that you'd want to be increasing participation. OK, so another issue that came up here...
CAMEROTA: Something remarkable, I thought, happened yesterday. I thought it was remarkable that CNN found this -- the Reddit user who created the GIF of, you know, Donald Trump and the wrestling video and where he punches CNN.
So the investigative team went back and found the guy who first created this. He took credit for it, and then here comes the remarkable part. He apologized. He apologized for having done this. How often do you hear someone who creates a video that goes viral, then say this?
This is what he told CNN: "I would like to apologize for the posts made that were racist, bigoted and anti-Semitic." These are the other posts that were on his account. "I am in no way this kind of person. I would never support any kind of violence or actions against others simply for what they believe in. Nor would I carry out any violence against anyone based upon that or support anyone who did." He went on. He was so...
CUOMO: Then why is there so much stuff on his account?
[06:25:00] CAMEROTA: He deleted it.
CUOMO: But why was it there in the first place?
CAMEROTA: Because, I mean, in his apology, he says, you know, he thought that these things were sort of funny. He liked getting a rise out of people online.
CUOMO: It was so obvious.
CAMEROTA: He also went on to say that he had become addicted to the hate, addicted to the ginning up of people, because this is what happens.
LOUIS: A medical condition.
CAMEROTA: Honestly. He has -- the reason that I think this is so notable, Chris Cillizza, because this is a very full-throated, I think, genuine, honest apology. He has also asked that we not reveal his name or whereabouts. And we at CNN are honoring that, because he's apologized; and he thinks that he would then be in danger and at risk if other people knew his name. We get it. We understand that. So I don't know. I just think that this is just a very interesting addendum to this whole story.
CILLIZZA: It was certainly not the outcome I would have thought once we tracked him down. You know -- and I think it's actually a nice thing. but I would remind people, unless I'm mistaken, I saw the White -- I saw quotes coming out of the White House over the weekend saying, this -- Donald Trump did not get this image from Reddit. So, where did it come from?
CUOMO: Where did it come from?
CILLIZZA: I mean, you know, I hate to say it. I think it's almost certain he did, but then why is the White House saying he didn't? I mean, there's, you know, this -- I took -- sorry, Alisyn -- I took a nice thing, which was a guy at least being willing to say I shouldn't have done this...
CUOMO: When exposed and identified, he then decided to apologize for multiple entries on his account.
CAMEROTA: I get that.
CUOMO: That all go to the same picture of hate.
CILLIZZA: But a lot of people don't apologize even when exposed. I mean, I just see this as a possible glimmer of hope.
CUOMO: But the point is, why did -- why is the White House on the record saying that's not where he got it from? I mean, he got it from somewhere. Right. Donald Trump didn't build that GIF. I hope. I hope he has better things to do. It also came from somewhere.
And if this guy is saying yes, I did it, and it's me, I shouldn't have done it, then why is the White House saying, "That's not it"? Where did it come from?
I mean, I know this is going to get overshadowed and probably rightly so, frankly. The G-20, the North Korea, the stuff we talked about in the first segment. But it is just one of the many logical inconsistencies that come out of the White House that there's so many, frankly, that it's hard to cover them all.
CAMEROTA: That's a segment for a different day, Chris. Thank you.
CILLIZZA: Fair enough.
CAMEROTA: Thank you, Shannon, Errol. Thank you very much.
We do have some breaking news to get to in New York City: a 12-year veteran of the NYPD shot and killed in what authorities say was an unprovoked attack. We have the very latest on what happened here next.