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President Trump to Address Nation After Las Vegas Massacre; Aired 10:30-11a ET
Aired October 2, 2017 - 10:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:30:00] POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: Outside of the White House, what can we expect from the president this morning, Jeff?
With us also is Lisa Monaco, former Homeland Security adviser under the Obama administration who dealt with many tragedies including the Pulse nightclub massacre.
So first to you, Jeff Zeleny.
JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Poppy and John. President Trump will be addressing the nation momentarily and I am told by advisers that this speech is going to be largely one of comfort and a consoling the victims, of course.
This is a time of tragedy, a time of national mourning, so this is unfortunately one of the president's roles. His predecessors have gone through this time and time again. This is the president's second time addressing the country after a major incident like this, but, of course, this is the worst in U.S. history at this point.
We are watching closely to see what the president will say about domestic terrorism, if he will use those words or not.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Jeff, hang on one second.
BERMAN: Jeff, I don't mean to interrupt you, but the Mesquite Police Department, and this is again where the gunman lived.
BERMAN: They're giving something of a press conference right now. Let's listen.
QUINN AVERETT, MESQUITE, NEVADA POLICE: The information that gets -- that comes from that search warrant or from processing the home, we will be giving to Las Vegas Metro Police Department and their detectives are here as well. And that information will be getting released to the media through the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. So our role here is just to assist.
Unfortunately I can't give you a whole lot more information than that. So I would -- what I would recommend is that from this point forward most of the information that you can get, you can probably get through their office.
KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Can you just tell us if there's anything remarkable that officers saw about the house when they first approached?
AVERETT: No. Just -- it's a newer home. It's a new subdivision and it's a nice, clean home. And there's nothing out of the ordinary.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Officer, (INAUDIBLE) a search warrant was served at the house?
AVERETT: Yes, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can you tell us what was found? Was anyone inside?
AVERETT: No persons were inside of the home.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Were any weapons found?
AVERETT: I believe there was some weapons found and maybe some ammunition. As far as what type or how many I can't give that information out because I don't know it. The information will have to come through the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.
LAH: Can you quantify it? Are we talking about a number of weapons or --
AVERETT: I don't know.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can you talk about the evacuating the neighbors around Paddock's home?
AVERETT: Prior to executing the search warrant we did have the homes adjacent on each side of the home evacuated for their safety. Obviously because we don't know what's in the home. And to be safe we cleared the whole area around it.
LAH: The residents been allowed back in?
AVERETT: I don't know at this point.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Can you describe the neighborhood for us, Officer? Is it a cul-de-sac? Is it a street corner?
AVERETT: So it's a retirement community area. I believe 55 and older. It's a newer part of the community, so all the homes there are fairly new. It's really quiet. It is a cul-de-sac. It's just a regular neighborhood.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: How many homes are on that cul-de-sac?
AVERETT: Maybe four or five.
LAH: And can you characterize any sort of contact you may have had with the gunman? AVERETT: What's unique for us is the gunman, the shooter, and the
person with him, we in the Mesquite Police Department have not had any contacts with these people in the past. We haven't had any traffic stops, we haven't had any law enforcement contacts, no arrests or nothing.
LAH: To have nothing and then to have this happen, as a police officer, how do you reconcile all of that?
AVERETT: We don't know how long they've lived here, whether they've been here a while or not. That's something being investigated as well but it is unique.
LAH: When you say they, how many people lived in the home and who went to them?
AVERETT: We don't know at this point for sure how many or just those two or if there were more.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Those two is a man and a woman?
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Has the woman been accounted for?
AVERETT: I'll have to refer to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department for her location or if she's been located. I don't know.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Did you have any contact with the neighbors? Were they surprised when the (INAUDIBLE) any kind of reacting to this, the neighbors?
AVERETT: I don't think anything out of the ordinary that any of us wouldn't react the same way.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Do they remain in the homes while you were executing the warrants?
AVERETT: They left their homes.
LAH: A lot of residents here seem very confused because I mean, look at where we are.
AVERETT: It's a very quiet neighborhood, very quiet. It's a low crime area, very beautiful, clean area to live. So it is -- it's unique. It's a unique situation.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: (INAUDIBLE)
AVERETT: I'm sorry, I can't hear you.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Did the couple have any children?
AVERETT: I'm not aware.
LAH: Were they married? AVERETT: I am not aware that they were married. I don't know.
LAH: And do you know how long they've lived here?
AVERETT: I don't know that.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Just to clarify, forgive me, the woman was the person of interest or the person that the female was named by Las Vegas?
AVERETT: The female that was named by Las Vegas does show that she's lived in this home as well.
LAH: What do you want to tell residents here who may be concerned?
AVERETT: Don't be concerned. We have no indications that there's any threats or any problems that everybody is safe. There's no active threats at this time.
LAH: Were the weapons and ammunition found in one particular area? Were they spread around the house?
AVERETT: Like I said I don't know at this point.
[10:35:03] UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Was there active construction going on in this neighborhood? This is a neighborhood under development?
AVERETT: This is an area that's constantly growing. So yes, there's always active construction going on in one part or another.
LAH: What percentage of Mesquite is 55 plus?
AVERETT: That's a good question. I don't know. I could guess but I don't know. Maybe a quarter of the population.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Is the home a single-family home? Is it a town home?
AVERETT: Single-family home.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: And are there immediate neighbors immediately around it in the rest of the area?
AVERETT: Yes, there are immediate -- and I do have some -- a couple of pictures of the home once we're done here if you give me your business cards, I will get you those pictures to you.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Did it look it was lived in like a newspaper in the driveway?
AVERETT: Just a regular home, yes, ma'am. Looked like it was lived in.
LAH: Have you spoken to neighbors about their interactions with them?
AVERETT: That's something that's being done. UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Are you guys getting calls about the suspects
from people in the neighborhood who have known them?
AVERETT: As far as -- in the past have we?
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: No, currently today.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Is there a search warrant on the house?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you.
AVERETT: You bet you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you. Appreciate it.
BERMAN: All right. You've been listening to a briefing from the Mesquite Police Department. That is the town where the gunman, Stephen Paddock, lived, 64 years old. They just searched the home where he lived. And it was remarkable because the news from this news conference was nothing unusual.
BERMAN: Found in that home. A regular community. A 55-plus community. Right there.
HARLOW: Although they did say as we're getting our Kyung Lah up who's asking all of those important questions there to the officer, they did find some weapons or ammunition in the home. They don't know how many, they don't know where they were in the home but a quiet neighborhood, a new subdivision, nothing remarkable, his words.
BERMAN: And again, the weapons and ammunition certainly with someone who had no record.
BERMAN: Like this man.
HARLOW: At all.
BERMAN: Not in and of itself unusual.
Lisa Monaco joins us now again.
And, Lisa, to have no information at this point, nothing unusual about the house, you know, it's a tough place to be this many hours after the shooting and tough for the president, too, who has to address the nation shortly to try to unify but it's a nation looking for answers.
LISA MONACO, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: No, that's exactly right. And what you'll see now is information that we're starting to get, right, from the search warrant that is executed, we're going to have to see what happens with the interviews of the neighbors and the people in the community. But you're right, very little for the president and his communications team to go on, which is why I think it's very important that the message be one of calm, of unity, of resolve, and the nation is going to be turning to a set of questions about how something like this could happen and how this individual have so many guns and have -- no one has seen him as far as we know go into that hotel with them. Yes.
HARLOW: And a new kind of ambush from above. 32 floors above these 22,000 people.
Lisa, stay with us, please.
We also have with us our John King, our David Chalian, our political director, our senior White House correspondent Jeff Zeleny, as we wait, gentlemen, for the president to address the nation.
David Chalian, to you first, a message of unity is what Lisa Monaco who has been in the White House for tragedies like this, that is what we need to hear -- are expecting to hear, she says, from the president. What can you tell us?
DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Well, as Jeff Zeleny was reporting earlier, the president is expected to fill that role of consoler-in-chief. And that's what the country sort of needs to hear right now from the president of the United States. There will be lots to learn about this investigation and motives and as all of that comes out, you know, hours away from now, days down the road, politics will enter into this, but President Trump right now has that very solemn job that just comes along with the office of sort of wrapping his arms around the country through an extraordinarily difficult moment.
BERMAN: And it is what he did after the Steve Scalise shooting.
BERMAN: The shooting of those individuals at the Republican baseball practice earlier in the spring, so he does have some experience with this.
John King, but remember, I mean this is a president who as a private citizen and then as a candidate would often speak or tweet or write things before all the information came in, and now he is learning, no doubt, that when you're actually in the Oval Office, things are quite different.
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. And we've seen this president get out ahead of the news if you will on some past incidents around the world there in the -- and in the United States, suggesting, for example, in the past that terrorism was at play, and John, he's been right about that but he has frustrated law enforcement officials by getting out ahead of the fact if you will.
The president has just issued a tweet earlier today expressing his condolences. He's been very low key about this one, very presidential, if you will. The challenge for the president here, I covered the Bill Clinton White House during Columbine, there was 9/11 obviously during the George W. Bush presidency and other events.
Lisa was in the Obama White House when this happened all too often including Sandy Hook. It's the job of the president to come out and first just tell all Americans we're neighbors, we're brothers and we're sisters.
[10:40:05] And then to tell them their government, whether it's the local police in Nevada or the FBI here in Washington helping them and every other agency in between, is on top of this and we'll get to the bottom of this.
You know the president doesn't have the latest facts. He knows how many have been killed so far, he knows of the injured so far, but as we just listened to that remarkable news conference in Mesquite we don't know much about the shooter yet. So the job of the president is not to dissect the crime if you will but just to try to tell the country, look, we'll get through this and I'm going to stay on top of it, I promise you.
HARLOW: Jeff Zeleny, to you outside of the White House, we're waiting for the president, he was supposed to speak at 10:30 so he could come out at any moment. We had to interrupt you last time to get to this press conference in Mesquite, but you were saying?
ZELENY: I was saying that look, I mean, again as David and John are saying, the first and foremost thought on this president's mind is one of unity, is one of issuing his sympathies and condolences but also at the same time there are advisers here, of course, at the White House and, indeed across Washington and the government trying to find more out about this gunman.
And it is unusual the president often weighs in early as John was saying. He has been very quiet about this this morning with the exception of that message he sent out earlier on social media. But part of that is because there isn't a lot of information. And part of it also is, of course, he's being presidential in this moment. But the information, of course, as it comes in, we will learn more of it. This speech, I am told, is going to be more of a thematic speech, a comforting speech. We do not expect at least the president to make any news in the speech in terms of revealing any new information, as he did during that speech when Congressman Scalise was shot.
The president, indeed, announced that the gunman had been shot and he identified him. We do not expect anything like that of course because the Las Vegas police have already made that information known here. But look for this to be a moment for this president, a moment of leadership for him to speak.
Now as you said he was scheduled to speak about 11 minutes or so ago. I'm not exactly sure what is holding him up. He has rearranged his schedule this morning to give this address. He was supposed to be in the East Room of the White House at 11:00. That event is now being held by the vice president. An event on economics and other matters. So the president is focusing on this and again he's still scheduled to go to Puerto Rico tomorrow, that could always be adjusted, but his words that he'll say today will be, again, something that his predecessors had to do so many times as consoler and comforter-in- chief.
BERMAN: No, it is interesting, one of the things that could be delaying the speech is just the lack of information. You want to find out everything you can before you come out and speak before the country.
BERMAN: But we do know a lot, which is that more than 50 people were killed on American soil. Gunned down by killer from the 32nd floor and more than 400 people injured on American soil.
And that is enough to speak to the nation, David Chalian, to try to bring the nation together in this moment, to try to keep, you know, the focus where it should be.
CHALIAN: Yes. John, and you noted those comments earlier this year when Steve Scalise and others were shot at that ballpark. The president hit that tone spot on. He was sort of tonally perfect I thought when he gave those remarks back when that shooting occurred.
What we'll all be watching for here is if he is going to resist what some already -- I've seen a slew of Democrats, including Hillary Clinton, already sort of going to the politics of this moment in their social media statements and talking about fighting the NRA and bringing in the gun control debate just hours into this unfolding tragedy, and we will all watch now to see if the president sort of resists joining that political conversation and sticks to what we're discussing here, just sort of the empathetic moment here that the country clearly would love to hear from the president.
HARLOW: And we do just have a statement in now from the Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who said he met with the new FBI director Christopher Wray this morning. Also assured the sheriff there in Las Vegas that they have the full support of the FBI, ATF, the entire Department of Justice, his message to the many families whose lives have been changed forever by this heinous act, we offer you our prayers and our promise that we will do everything in our power to get justice for your loved ones.
BERMAN: You know, it strikes me, John King, that the very people advising the president right now in the aftermath of this shooting are the same people dealing with Puerto Rico.
BERMAN: In some cases. Tom Bossert, the current Homeland Security adviser, DHS, Elaine Duke, the acting head of the Department of Homeland Security. This just shows how quickly a government can be stretched thin -- John.
KING: It's the one thing every new president and President Trump has just been on the job a little more than eight months, he's still a relatively young president in office. It's something every new president and every new presidential staff learns is that you don't get to dictate what comes across your desk. Yes, you have your plan, the president trying to sell his tax reform agenda, the president was planning to make that trip to Puerto Rico tomorrow, we expect that to go forward.
[10:45:07] The president has things on his schedule including a visiting foreign dignitary today. You can plan that but you can't plan for things like this. Stuff happens in the country that comes to the president's desk. And that famous note, the outgoing president always leaves, the next incoming president, you know, a note, and George W. Bush wrote to Bill Clinton, I know you want to focus on the economy like -- focused like a laser on the economy, but guess what, every world problem comes to your desk. Every domestic problem comes to a president's desk as well.
One of the things that will be interesting as we wait for the president here is too often, and this is not unique to President Trump, it seems exacerbated, the volume is higher under President Trump, but Lisa lived through this in the Obama years. I remember this in the George W. Bush and the Bill Clinton years covering the White House. We've somehow lost our ability to set politics aside, some people have, if you look at the social media chatter, if you look at the predictable critics if you will.
Many people have lost their ability to set politics aside in a moment like this and just be Americans listening to the president. To hear what the president has to say. To set everything else aside. That's the challenge for this president. Because we do live in such a polarized climate that some people go into their boxes, even before we hear the words from our president.
HARLOW: John King, well said. This is a moment not for politics, a moment to be the comforter-in-chief. Our Jeff Zeleny, we did just get the two-minute warning which the president is coming out any moment.
HARLOW: As we wait, Jeff Zeleny, more from you. I know you understand there is some reason for the delay here.
ZELENY: There is a bit of a reason for the delay. I am told the speech was just updated in the president's teleprompter. This of course will be a teleprompter speech from the diplomatic reception rooms. One of the, you know, most somber, stoic, patriotic places to deliver this message. So the speech was being updated in real time. New information being added.
We don't know what that is, but we are expecting the president here any moment. And he has rescheduled his entire morning here. They wanted to do this speech in a separate event like this with those flags behind the podium as you see, not simply tack it on top of an event he had at 11:00. So he canceled that to address the country here, again.
This is a -- the biggest shooting on his watch, something that is a test for any president, rhetorically, and we'll hear from him shortly.
BERMAN: Jeff Zeleny, thanks so much. Lisa Monaco, last word as we're waiting for the president any second right now. The speech being revised even as we speak.
MONACO: Yes. Look, I'm sure they're trying to know everything they can before the president goes out there, but I think the point was made previously, this is not a time for the president to be talking about investigative steps or talking about even the facts as we're learning them, about what happened early this morning and late last night in Las Vegas, but rather, to have a message of unity and of calm and of reassurance.
HARLOW: As he did after Steve Scalise was shot.
MONACO: That's right.
HARLOW: And others injured in that congressional Republican baseball practice that was going on.
HARLOW: He has shown that he can bring this country together and the words of unity is what this nation needs this morning.
BERMAN: Let's just remind people again of the facts as we know them waiting for the president. The deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
BERMAN: You can see on your screen more than 50 people killed, 400 injured. The shooter is a man named Stephen Paddock, 64 years old. What we know so far, no nexus to foreign terror, no criminal record of any serious kind other than a traffic violation. Law enforcement had no contact with him. They've searched the house. Ten weapons found in the hotel room.
BERMAN: Where he carried out his mass murder.
HARLOW: Some in his homes.
BERMAN: Some weapons in the home but that in and of itself doesn't tell you much.
BERMAN: Nothing unusual seems to be the headline here which in some ways is so confusing.
HARLOW: But it was surreal, horrific, for all of the people, the 22,000 people, all of those you would imagine hundreds of first responders who came, some of the eyewitnesses that we've had on who lived through this morning, saying to us, 10 to 15 minutes of constant, constant fire, saying it felt like it would never end.
BERMAN: And again it went on twice. You could hear pauses where the gunman was clearly reloading. Law enforcement saw the flashes from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel. They radioed to other law enforcement who were able to go up to the room and through a dynamic raid using an explosive breach.
BERMAN: They blew down the door. They went into the room, not clear exactly how he died, though at this point law enforcement says it is likely that the gunman took his own life.
HARLOW: And very remarkable how quickly, Lisa Monaco, the response was, as we wait for the president, 10 to 15 minutes, it seemed like an eternity for the people living through this, 10 to 15 minutes for first responders, SWAT with explosives to get up to that room, it's remarkable.
MONACO: It's really incredible. And by all accounts it was really an incredible response by Las Vegas police and the SWAT team there, to determine where those shots were coming from and the chaos that was going on in the ground there and to make it up there, have a plan to dynamically breach that door. They didn't know what would be on the other side of it and, obviously, a great risk to the first responders' lives as well.
[10:50:03] BERMAN: The president of the United States.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Thank you. My fellow Americans, we are joined together today in sadness, shock, and grief. Last night a gunman opened fire on a large crowd at a country music concert in Las Vegas, Nevada. He brutally murdered more than 50 people and wounded hundreds more.
It was an act of pure evil. The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security are working closely with local authorities to assist with the investigation and they will provide updates as to the investigation and how it develops.
I want to thank the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department and all of the first responders for their courageous efforts and for helping to save the lives of so many. The speed with which they acted is miraculous and prevented further loss of life. To have found the shooter so quickly after the first shots were fired, is something for which we will always be thankful and grateful. It shows what true professionalism is all about.
Hundreds of our fellow citizens are now mourning the sudden loss of a loved one, a parent, a child, a brother or sister. We cannot fathom their pain, we cannot imagine their loss.
To the families of the victims, we are praying for you and we are here for you. And we ask God to help see you through this very dark period. Scripture teaches us the Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves
those who are crushed in spirit. We seek comfort in those words for we know that God lives in the hearts of those who grieve.
To the wounded who are now recovering in hospitals, we are praying for your full and speedy recovery and pledge to you our support from this day forward. In memory of the fallen, I have directed that our great flag be flown at half staff.
I will be visiting Las Vegas on Wednesday to meet with law enforcement, first responders, and the families of the victims. In moments of tragedy and horror, America comes together as one. And it always has. We call upon the bonds that unite us, our faith, our family, and our shared values.
We call upon the bonds of citizenship, the ties of community, and the comfort of our common humanity. Our unity cannot be shattered by evil, our bonds cannot be broken by violence, and though we feel such great anger, at the senseless murder of our fellow citizens, it is our love that defines us today. And always will. Forever.
In times such as these, I know we are searching for some kind of meaning in the chaos, some kind of light in the darkness. The answers do not come easy. But we can take solace knowing that even the darkest space can be brightened by a single light and even the most terrible despair can be illuminated by a single ray of hope.
Melania and I are praying for every American who has been hurt, wounded or lost the ones they loved so dearly in this terrible, terrible attack. We pray for the entire nation to find unity and peace, and we pray for the day when evil is banished and the innocent are safe from hatred and from fear.
May God bless the souls of the lives that are lost. May God give us the grace of healing and may God provide the grieving families with strength to carry on.
Thank you. God bless America. Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Mr. President --
[10:55:07] HARLOW: A message of unity, of resilience from the president, saying that this was an act of pure evil in Las Vegas, pledging prayers to those who lost their loved ones, those lives lost, also saying to those wounded that are in the hospital now, we will be with you now and always, saying in moments of darkness and chaos like this, the answers do not come easily. Also saying he will travel to Las Vegas on Wednesday.
BERMAN: He will travel to Las Vegas on Wednesday after presumably going to Puerto Rico tomorrow. Of the families of those killed and he noted there were hundreds of people who will have had family members killed or wounded we cannot imagine their pain, we cannot fathom their loss.
Back with us, you know, John King, our chief national correspondent. John, in some ways some of the most important words the president said
were the first three, my fellow Americans, bringing the country -- trying to with his words bringing the country together.
KING: And then saying as part of his remarks our unity cannot be shattered by evil.
Look, pitch perfect from the president right there. Again, I'm sure already, there are some people out there because of the polarized environment we live in who won't like something they heard or won't trust something they heard or won't find truthfulness or credibility in something their president just said. I would hope that they would take a breath and let the president have his peace here in the sense that he came out, he said he wanted to unify the country.
The president was supposed to go to Puerto Rico tomorrow. He's had some political pushback there. Now he says he will go to Vegas on Wednesday. The president has now two tragedies, very different types, the hurricane damage in Puerto Rico, after Texas and Florida, and other places in the United States, now this, the deadliest mass shooting in American history taking place on his watch.
I don't think that whatever your politics are there is anything you can take issue with what we just heard from the president of the United States right there. At moments like this, we will be talking about something very different about the Trump presidency had this not happened. I guess my only question is, because of that, because of where we began before this shooting how do the people who don't agree with this president on just about anything else, process this, but as someone who covered the White House for 10 years through two different presidents, been in town almost 30 years now, that was pitch perfect.
HARLOW: Yes. This is the time to bring the country together. That is exactly, John King, what the president did with those remarks. This is not a time for politics nor did he inject them at all into those remarks. And as John so beautifully said, to my fellow Americans.
With us, again, our political director David Chalian, Jeff Zeleny, our senior White House correspondent, Lisa Monaco is also with us.
Jeff Zeleny, as you noted those remarks were updated until the very last moment from the president.
ZELENY: Pretty standard operating procedure particularly for a speech like this. You want to get every word right. And again, the president, he left it to his role of being a unifier. He did not talk about the investigation, he did not talk about the suspect. One of the reasons is, you know, not much is known. He said that the FBI and Homeland Security and others are -- are looking into this. This is not a lot --
HARLOW: You pronounce the G. ZELENY: -- the nation to convey. But by saying that he will go to
Las Vegas on Wednesday, by visiting this, it is something that puts him in line with what so many presidents before him have done and paid their respects. Of course Las Vegas is a town that he is connected to and knows well. His name is emblazoned on the top of a hotel there as well. He campaigned there a lot. So this is something that I'm not surprised at all to see him go there visiting early.
But again, I think the moment here is what comes after this. This invariable -- invariably after today and tomorrow will become a discussion of politics, of guns. It's not appropriate for that moment today. You will hear it from some Democrats.
HARLOW: Yes. Got it.
ZELENY: But what will this president do in that respect.
HARLOW: Cedric is not --
ZELENY: Will he take a leadership role in that respect? We will of course watch that as the days unfold, but the president clearly, as John said, striking a pitch perfect tone there.
And something else I think to keep in mind, a lot of these country music supporters were likely Trump supporters. And this is something that of course is hitting the tapestry of all Americans and there are going to be victims from across the country here. So this is something that is a national tragedy as the president said and the flags he also ordered at half staff today in memory and thought of all of the victims in Las Vegas.
BERMAN: David Chalian, we have a few seconds left right now. Want to get your last word. Your last thoughts on what we just heard from the president?
CHALIAN: It's everything you would want to hear from a president of the United States. Everything that you wanted to hear there. I agree with what John and Jeff are saying, this was certainly pitch perfect. I also -- it struck me because of how divided our politics are, because of what a divisive figure he can be for many people, to hear him talk about the comfort of our common humanity, I just think is such an important call for everyone in the nation to hear this president say that.
HARLOW: An act of pure evil and we as Americans all come together on this day. That is the message from the president.
Thank you all for being with us. David Chalian, thanks to you, and everyone, who is with us navigating these last two hours. We appreciate it.
I'm Poppy Harlow in New York.
BERMAN: Kate Bolduan picks up our coverage right now.