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Search for Missing Sailors; Treat Yourself in Moderation; Trump Blasts GOP Leaders. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired August 24, 2017 - 08:30   ET



[08:32:33] ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: The search continues for ten Navy sailors who went missing after the guided missile destroyer, the USS John S. McCain, collided with an oil tanker near Singapore on Tuesday. U.S. military divers did find some remains as they searched the flooded compartments of the McCain, but those have not yet been I.D.ed. This is the fourth collision this year.

And joining us now is Cynthia Kimball. Her son, John Hoagland is among those missing.

Cynthia, I know this is an agonizing time for you and I know that you just got some terrible news on your way over to our interview. What did the Navy tell you?

CYNTHIA KIMBALL, MOTHER OF MISSING SAILOR JOHN HOAGLAND: As of this evening, they said sunset in Singapore, which would be this morning, they're going to change the status from search and rescue to recovery.

CAMEROTA: Cynthia, we're so, so, so sorry that you had to get --

KIMBALL: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: That news. We can only imagine how excruciating and agonizing this time is for you because, of course, it's the not knowing, you know, where your son is or what happened. Have you been in touch with the Navy? Have they been keeping you up to date on all of their efforts?

KIMBALL: Yes. The Navy's been amazing. They've talked to us several times. We talk to them at least twice a day if not more. They've done a really good job of keeping us, you know, up to date as to where they're at.

CAMEROTA: We know that tragically some remains were found. Have they told you where they are in terms of identifying those?

KIMBALL: I know that they've notified some of the families and I know that my son wasn't part of it -- one of them. So that's all I know.

CAMEROTA: We always, always hear from parents in your situation that the not knowing that is so excruciating and painful because of course you just want to know the fate of your son. And I wanted to ask you, Cynthia, have you been worried about him before all of this happened because of the string of accidents from, you know, some Navy ships this year? How big of a concern was all of that to you?

[08:35:05] KIMBALL: Honestly, I talked to my son before. John and I had talked about after the Fitzgerald and it's not -- you know, he's on the USS McCain. It's not supposed to happen. You just don't -- you don't think it's going to happen to your -- to your child. You just -- you don't -- you don't think about it. So --


KIMBALL: Honestly, I wasn't worried about him at all. I thought, you know, he's in a good place. He's on a good ship. He -- the thought never crossed my mind.

CAMEROTA: And the USS Fitzgerald that you're talking about, that was in June, and there were, I believe, seven sailors killed. What they say happened here was that there was a steering column malfunction of some kind. Has the Navy shared with you what they think caused this accident, or what went wrong?

KIMBALL: No. All I know, as far as what caused the accident, I don't know any more than y'all do.

CAMEROTA: Were you ever concerned about maintenance of these ships?

KIMBALL: No. Every time that there's something that, you know, they've had to work on from -- you know, from talking to John, he was very proud of the people he worked with and very confident in them doing their job. So if they were doing maintenance on the open sea, they knew what they were doing. So that wasn't a concern for me.

CAMEROTA: I want to talk about your son, John, and I wonder -- I was so struck by something that he posted on Facebook about just how much he loved his mission, and he loved his job. And I just want to read it for our viewers. Here's his Facebook post on June 13th. He said, I still can't get over just looking out over the ocean or staring up at all of the stars at night. I think those two things are at the top of my list of favorite reasons for going Navy over any other branch.

Tell us about those feelings of his.

KIMBALL: John loved the Navy. He thought that the Navy was -- it was definitely the place he needed to be. He really loved the idea and the places that he got to see. He was proud of who he was and what he was doing. And every place he went, he sent me pictures. Can't tell you how many pictures I have of the ocean. He loved it. He loved it very much.

CAMEROTA: I can see that. I mean I can see that just from these beautiful pictures of him. He looks proud. He looks happy. Tell us what else you'd like us to know about John.

KIMBALL: John -- you know, everybody's parents, you know, think their children are amazing. But John truly was. I mean he loved people. He loved his country and his family. And he would have done anything for anybody. You know, his friends felt that way. His family felt that way. You know, we just -- we're very proud of the person that he is, and the person, you know, he's grown into. He cares about -- he cares about people.

CAMEROTA: President Trump tweeted about this --


CAMEROTA: Sorry to interrupt, but I just wanted to get your thoughts on the president --

KIMBALL: Oh, you're fine.

CAMEROTA: Because he tweeted about this tragedy I think four days ago. Would it help you to hear directly from the president?

KIMBALL: I -- in all honestly, me personally, it wouldn't make a difference who it came from. You know, if -- the president's a person just like the rest of us. He -- he has just as much -- no. It wouldn't -- it wouldn't matter. It wouldn't make a difference. I would rather hear from the Navy giving me some kind of closure than from the president telling me that he's -- I wouldn't -- I don't know how to word this.

CAMEROTA: I understand. I understand. I mean I think that you're saying --

KIMBALL: Condolences, it's not the same as --

CAMEROTA: Yes, that condolences don't help you right now. You're looking for real information and you're looking for closure. And, Cynthia, we pray that you get that as soon as possible. And we pray that you get some information about your son John today. Thank you so much for sharing the pictures and your stories with us.

KIMBALL: Thank you.


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: A hard reminder there that it's not just the men and women who serve, but their entire families. They feel the pain of the loss and the sacrifice. And our hearts go out to them.

So we're also following for you this morning these hurricane warnings that are up along the Texas coast. Tropical Storm Harvey is taking aim at the state. The latest on storm prep, next.


[08:44:11] CAMEROTA: Time now for the "Five Things to Know for Your New Day."

President Trump shifting from uniter to divider, calling for healing in a speech to veterans, less than 24 hours after going off script in that raucous campaign rally in Phoenix.

CUOMO: A CNN exclusive, congressional investigators have unearthed an e-mail from a Trump campaign aide that reveals another attempt to set up a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin this time. The author of that e-mail is Rick Dearborn (ph). He's now deputy White House chief of staff.

CAMEROTA: Confusion this morning over a record-setting Power Ball win. A single winning ticket worth $758 million was sold in Massachusetts. Local lottery officials originally said that ticket was sold in Watertown. Now they say the winning ticket was actually purchased 80 miles from there in the town of Chicopee.

CUOMO: President Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, meeting separately today with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank. Kushner is leading a White House delegation, which aims to restart stalled peace talks.

[08:45:12] CAMEROTA: The Texas coast is now under a hurricane warning as Tropical Storm Harvey intensifies. Forecast models show very alarming rain projections. The storm is expected to make landfall this weekend.

CUOMO: They're looking at close to 20 inches in some places.


CUOMO: All right, so for more on the "Five Things to Know," you can go to for the latest.

CAMEROTA: President Trump is awake and he's on Twitter. He is going after fellow Republicans and complaining about the press. We have it all in "The Bottom Line" for you.

CUOMO: All right, but, first, separating fact from fiction on how foods like chocolate and nuts can be -- can be -- good for your health, but also bad for you.


CUOMO: I know. Nutritionist Lisa Drayer is counting calories in today's "Food as Fuel."


LISA DRAYER, CNN HEALTH CONTRIBUTOR: Turns out you can have too much of a good thing, like wine, for example. A glass won't make a huge dent in your dally calorie budget. A five ounce serving of red wine has about 125 calories, while white wine has a little less. The antioxidant resveratrol in red wine may also help prevent damage to blood vessels, lower bad cholesterol and prevent blood clots. But consuming too much alcohol, including wine, can lead to weight gain and other health problems, including high blood pressure and liver disease. So limit your intake to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks per day for men.

Guacamole is another popular treat and it's packed with good, heart healthy fat. It's also a good source of fiber and potassium, which helps to balance sodium's effects on blood pressure. But it's easy to overdo it, so portion control is key. Just a quarter cup has 90 calories. I recommend swapping veggies for chips. That way you'll get the most nutrients for the fewest calories. (END VIDEOTAPE)


[08:51:19] CUOMO: The president taking to Twitter to air his grievances, calling out leaders of his party. I requested that Mitch M. and Paul R., we assume McConnell and Ryan, of course, tie the debt ceiling legislation into the popular VA bill, which just passed, for easy approval. They didn't do it. So now we have a big deal with Dems holding them up as usual on debt ceiling approval. Could have been so easy. Now, a mess.

CAMEROTA: And, surprise, he's blasting the media for criticizing his -- or even pointing out his wildly different tone in speeches. He's writing, the fake news is now complaining about my different types of back-to-back speeches. Well, there was Afghanistan, somber. The big rally, enthusiastic, dynamic and fun.

CUOMO: Because nothing says fun like white supremacists.

CAMEROTA: And the American Legion VA, respectful and strong. Too bad the Dems have no one who can change tones.

I'm not going to deduct for spelling and grammar issues because I think that it -- we got the point.

Let's bring in "The Bottom Line" from CNN political director David Chalian.

OK, David, go ahead. What are your thoughts?



CHALIAN: Let's start with the tweet about the debt ceiling and Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell. I think it's far more consequential and important.

We still are watching Republican intra party battle take place here. The fact that Donald Trump thinks it would be easy to just attach the debt ceiling increase to the VA bill and it would be done again I think reflects not a complete understanding of the legislative process.

As you guys know, it is the conservative wing of the Republican Party, the House Freedom Caucus, that Paul Ryan is constantly needing to sort of wrangle to get their votes on various issues, like we saw on health care, that has usually been the ones demanding spending cuts and other reforms that go in place in order to increase the debt ceiling, not just giving a clean increase of the debt ceiling. So there's an intraparty battle that goes on among Republicans and Donald Trump is sort of playing games with it as we're approaching a deadline about whether or not America will default on its debt.

You hear Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan out there now in the last couple days saying, this is going to happen. We need to not shut down the government. We need to have an increase in the debt limit. But Donald Trump is clearly looking to sort of negotiate on both of these issues.

CUOMO: Well, I -- let's look at that a little bit. Let's seize upon your point, brother Chalian. Is he looking to negotiate? I don't know because I don't understand what his leverage is and his tactic seems to be just constantly berating members of his own party and it seems to be working against him, at least for now. So I don't know how good a negotiating tactic that is.

CHALIAN: Well, Chris, let me ask you -- let me ask you on that.


CHALIAN: So when Donald Trump at the rally the other day sort of threatened shutting down the government --

CUOMO: Right.

CHALIAN: Unless he got his money for paying --

CUOMO: Which he can't do, by the way.

CHALIAN: For the border wall.

CUOMO: You know.

CHALIAN: I don't know how you read that. I read that as sort of like classic art of the deal. Like go to the extreme position and put it out there --

CUOMO: But he doesn't close it down. It's not up to him. It's up to Congress. And what is he offering them in exchange. That's -- that's why I make the point. But the other tweet is a different type of proposition. There is no difference between what is good and what is bad, depending on your audience. The suggestion of the president that the different rallies at different audiences so he was going to have a different message is fine if he's talking about policy, taxes, what certain people want, what certain people don't want, talk to one thing with Wall Street, another thing with main street.

This is about morality and about whether or not Nazis and those who oppose them are morally equivalent. And I don't know how he thinks you can change that message based on who you're talking to and not be seen as a ball (ph), you know, panderer.

[08:55:02] CHALIAN: Yes, and I don't know how he does that without thinking that he's undermining himself. When he gets out there and pleads for unity and love and peace, but then gives words of comfort to white supremacists or they find comfort in his words or does -- creates a moral equivalency between neo-Nazi and counter protesters, it undermines -- why should anyone pay attention to the call of love and unity? It completely wipes that out. This isn't about being adept to change tones before different audiences. I completely agree. CAMEROTA: All right, David Chalian, thank you for your rapid response.

Real-time response to the president's messages. Thanks for "The Bottom Line."

CUOMO: All right, we're going to go to a quick break. When we come back, you're going to have the "NEWSROOM" with a lot of important updates. John Berman on the case. Stay with CNN.


JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone. I'm John Berman.

Just for the record, the teleprompter John Berman and the rally John Berman, not to mention the disco John Berman. The breaking news this morning is that President Donald Trump is Donald Trump. The only Donald Trump. The one who, moments ago, levied a fresh attack on the Republican leaders of Congress whom he refers to as Mitch M. and Paul R. And who, moments ago, seemed to relish in an image on social media, passing this on to his millions of followers, the best eclipse ever with a picture of him obstructing President Obama.