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Trump Versus Corker: The Feud Escalates; Trump Campaign Fundraises on NFL Walkout; Deadly California Wildfires; New Details on Vegas Shooting Timeline. Aired 4:30-5a ET

Aired October 10, 2017 - 04:30   ET



[04:33:53] DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: President Trump not finished with Senator Bob Corker. So what's in store in the feud between the commander-in-chief and a leading member of his own party?

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: The vice president's NFL walkout? Well, now, it has walked into fund-raising e-mail. The White House standing by its football fight, saying it could be a winning issue for this president.

BRIGGS: Plus, wildfires rage across California. At least ten dead and death toll still expected to grow. Evacuations are in order across parts of California.

Welcome back to EARLY START, everybody. I'm Dave Briggs.

ROMANS: I'm Christine Romans. Nice to see you all bright and early this morning. Thanks for joining us. Thirty-four minutes past the hour.

Let's begin this morning with new details on the president's escalating feud, with a leading member of his person. That person, of course, is Republican Senator Bob Corker. He is the powerful chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. And now, former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, well, he's calling on Corker to step down immediately. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEVE BANNON, FORMER WHITE HOUSE CHIEF STRATEGIST: McConnell and Corker and the entire clique, establishment, globalist clique on Capitol Hill have to go. And if he needs any -- if we need any more proof about what they think you heard it tonight.

[04:35:04] It's an absolute disgrace. If Bob Corker has any honor, any decency, he should resign immediately.


ROMANS: Sources tell CNN the president is angry that he stuck his neck out for establishment Republican Luther Strange of Alabama in his losing special election race against Roy Moore.

BRIGGS: The president backed Strange at the request of other establishment Republicans like Senator Majority Leader Mitch McConnell but still getting flack from Republicans like Corker anyway. Flack like this.


SEN. BOB CORKER (R), TENNESSEE: I do worry that he's -- sometimes I feel like he's on a reality show of some kind when he's talking about these big foreign policy issues. And, you know, he doesn't realize that, you know, that we could be heading towards World War III with the kind of comments that he's making.


BRIGGS: Sources also tell CNN the president is lashing out at Corker in part over frustration that his legislative agenda is stalled in Congress, even though the president needs senators like Corker to get that agenda passed.

One GOP source in touch with the White House tells CNN, Corker has more allies in the Senate than the president and the feud is a bad idea for Trump. And there could be more to come.

More on that from CNN's Sara Murray.



This is a feud that could continue. White House officials say Trump is not yet done with Corker. That's not necessarily good news to everyone here in the East Wing. This is after President Trump spent the weekend going after Corker on Twitter, saying the only reason Corker has decided not to run for reelection is because Trump wouldn't endorse him and Corker knew there is no way he would win without Trump's backing.

Now, Corker's staff has taken issue with that characterization, disputing it, insisting the president said that if Corker would reconsider and would run again, that Trump would back this senator.

Some are concerned that Trump could be alienating a key ally both on foreign policy and on budget issues.

Back to you, guys.


BRIGGS: Sara Murray at the White House -- thanks.

President Trump using the controversy around Vice President Pence's walkout of that NFL game over the weekend, over the national anthem, using that very incident to raise money. This as critics charge that Pence's walkout was in reality a staged stunt paid for buy taxpayer dollars. In Monday's fundraising email, the president slammed members of the San Francisco 49ers who took a knee during the anthem, writing, your vice president refused to dignify their disrespect.

ROMANS: But the president praising one NFL team owner, in a tweet: A big absolute to Jerry Jones, owner of the Dallas Cowboys, who will bench players who disrespect our flag. Stand for anthem or sit for game.

One administration source telling CNN that some in the White House do believe this issue plays well for the president.

For more, let's turn to CNN's Rene Marsh.



It appears the vice president made the trip on Air Force Two knowing that he'd walk out before the main event. And it comes as government watchdogs are investigating several Trump cabinet officials for their use of private jets and military planes. Well, Pence left the Indianapolis Colts versus San Francisco 49ers game in his home state when players from the 49ers took a knee during the national anthem.

Well, Sunday started with Pence tweeting that he was looking forward to cheering on the Colts. Once at the stadium, his aides told orders that Pence may depart the game early and that they should stay in their vehicles. Well, after around 30 minutes in the stadium, Pence tweeted he left the game because @POTUS and I will not dignify any event that disrespects our soldiers, our flag or our national anthem.

And then later, the president tweeted, he and Pence discussed walking out beforehand. I asked @VPPence to leave stadium if any players kneeled, disrespecting our country. I'm proud of him and Second Lady Karen.

Well, the walkout is drawing some sharp criticism, with some calling it a very expensive political stunt on taxpayers' dime. It costs $30,000 per hour to fly Air Force Two. Pence flew from Las Vegas to Indianapolis on Saturday, then flew from Indianapolis to Los Angeles on Sunday. The cost? Nearly a quarter million dollars.

The flight cost estimates do not include the cost of advance personnel, Secret Service and support on the ground. We will say that Pence's office contends if it wasn't for the game, he would have flown back to Washington, D.C., and they say that would have been a greater cost -- Dave and Christine.


ROMANS: All right, Rene. Thank you, in Washington.

The White House standing by its hard line demands for any deal to protect the undocumented immigrants known as DREAMers. Democratic leaders in Congress calling President Trump's immigration wish list a non-starter. [04:40:00] One aide saying the decision to release it on a Sunday night before Columbus Day looked like an effort to bury it. But the Republican adviser to the president says, quote, Democrats have to compromise to get their goals or why bother.

BRIGGS: House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi suggests her side of the aisle might withhold spending bills if there's no deal on DREAMers. That needs to happen by March or some 690,000 young people brought to the U.S. as children will lose protections allowing them to work and stay in the country legally.

We get more from CNN's Phil Mattingly on Capitol Hill.


PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Dave and Christine, here's the reality. That is a complete non-starter with Democrats. And in the U.S. Senate, nothing will happen on DACA without at least eight Democrats. They need 60 votes to be able to move this forward. Republicans only control 52 seats in the chamber.

So, where does that leave things right now?

Well, as I noted, Democrats saying this absolutely won't be part of any deal. Republicans saying, calm down, this is kind of a starting point of a negotiation, a negotiation that will continue over the next couple of months. But the drawback here that I think both sides will acknowledge is any clear path forward that they hope to have in kind of a near-term fashion for an issue that is very, very personal to so many people, well, that has certainly gone up in smoke right now. And the clear path forward they hope to get to by November or December, well, that at least at this point doesn't exist -- Dave and Christine.


ROMANS: EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt set to sign an order repealing clean power rules today. According to the proposal leaked to CNN, Pruitt is making the case that the Obama era rules amount to overreach by the EPA. The leaked proposal also reveals Pruitt has not decided if the agency will create new regulations for greenhouse gases.

The Clean Power Plan requires states to meet carbon emission reductions standards based on their energy consumption. It rewards states for deploying renewable energy and low income energy efficiency programs ahead of schedule. Under the Obama administration, the EPA estimated that Clean Power Plan could prevent 2,700 to 6,600 premature deaths and up to 150,000 asthma attacks in children.

Earlier this year, EPA Chief Pruitt insisted the plan kills jobs. It's a war on coal and beyond the scope of the agency's authority.

All right. Forty-two minutes past the hour.

Wall Street excited about President Trump's plan, slashing corporate taxes will save companies billions of dollar. But could his tax plan actually hurt stocks? The promise of tax reform has fuelled the stock market. The Dow, look at this, up nearly 25 percent since the election, but you're starting to hear worries that the stimulus from a big corporate tax cut will make the rally unsustainable, especially if it adds to the deficit, mainly because of bonds. Bonds are investments in debt, and bond rates have in historic laws, making stocks more attractive to investors.

But adding more debt could trigger a sell-off, lifting rates. And estimates say Trump's plan could add another $2.4 trillion to U.S. debt.

Now, reforming the tax code is long overdue. Look, it's got to be done. Reforming the tax code, no-brainer. But the U.S. economy may not need that much tax stimulus right now. Corporate profits are at record highs. The unemployment rate is at 16-year low. And, of course, Trump's tax plan could always make things better, for example, by encouraging businesses to invest their tax savings in jobs. But there's no guarantee they'll do that or that tax cuts will even pass Congress, especially if the president continues these Twitter fights with GOP senators whose support he needs.

Check out CNNMoney this morning. A really great analysis from our folks about just what could the effects of tax cuts be. There's also --

BRIGGS: I've never heard there could be never impacts on the market.

ROMANS: And there's also this new kind of subtext that if you were to get big tax cuts, that weren't paid for, right?

BRIGGS: Corporate.

ROMANS: And that -- right, corporate -- and that juiced the economy, briefly, even, the Fed would have to start raising rates, right, to prevent inflation, which then blunt the effect of the tax cut. So, it's a little more complicated than just saying --

BRIGGS: A little?

ROMANS: -- let's cut taxes for everybody. So, check out that story on CNNMoney. I'll tweet for you in a minute.

BRIGGS: OK, new details on the timeline of the Las Vegas shooting. Plus, we're learning more about the shooter from his own words. That's next.


[04:48:13] BRIGGS: Last night, police provided new details in a Las Vegas massacre, significantly changing the timeline of the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history. CNN has also exclusively uncovered new information about the shooter, Stephen Paddock, gleaned from a lawsuit he filed back in 2013.

We'll get the latest now from CNN's Sara Sidner in Las Vegas. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, guys. Now, we're learning the timeline is very different from what we originally were told by authorities. The sheriff saying things would change and it certainly has in this case. Now, we're hearing that Jesus Campos, the security guard for the Mandalay Bay who was the initial person to take gun fire by Stephen Paddock went up to the 32nd floor because there was a door ajar and that set up an alarm.

Well, it turns out he was shot a full six minutes or so before Stephen Paddock started shooting at the crowd of concert goers, before we were told that he was shot during that and a lot of people assume that that may have been why Paddock stop shooting once he was found out by the guard.

But that is not the case now. The sheriff saying he arrived on the 32nd floor at 9:59 and was shot at that time. Stephen Paddock didn't start shooting until 10:05. So, lots of questions will be surrounding that detail.

We are also hearing from the sheriff that they are going back through Stephen Paddock's property to see if they missed anything, if there was anything and any evidence that could help them put together the puzzle of why Stephen Paddock opened fire on so many people.

We are also learning from a deposition that Stephen Paddock himself gave in 2013 after he sued one of the hotels when he slipped and fell in their lobby, and we hear from him that he calls himself the best video poker player in the world, saying he spent up to $1 million on any given night on those machines, giving you some idea of his gambling habit.

[04:50:10] All in all, though, again, we still don't know the answer as to why Stephen Paddock did what he did, and injured and killed so many people here in Vegas.

Back to you.


ROMANS: That is confounding that the --

BRIGGS: The timeline.

ROMANS: -- of the elusive motive and the timeline, shifting time line.

All right. Fifty minutes past the hour.

Millennials don't use credit cards like their parents or their grandparents. That could be a good thing. Guess what in? It could be a bad thing, too, if you're trying to get out some credit.

Details on CNN "Money Stream" next.


[04:55:04] BRIGGS: Deadly destructive wildfires raging across California from the north to the south, forcing evacuations, and reducing homes and businesses to ash -- the largest fires burning in wine country, Napa and Sonoma Counties. Ten people already killed and that number expected to climb.

More than 100 people now being treated in local hospitals for fire related injuries or health conditions caused by smoke. More than 119,000 acres spanning eight counties now burned.

One fire in Anaheim spreading to over 4,000 acres, destroying at least six buildings in his path.

CNN's Dan Simon with more from Santa Rosa, the heart of California wine country.


DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Dave and Christine, this fire has been so explosive, pushed by the high winds. At one point, the fire gusting to 40 to 50 miles per hour.

Take a look at this one neighborhood. This is the Sky View neighborhood in Santa Rosa, California. Devastation as far as the eye can see.

You can see some of the burned out vehicles as well. The fire smoldering here but we're told that the fire is still active in certain places. Crews doing whatever they can to get the blaze under control. I'm told by a fire official, though, that the fire activity is outpacing any resource they can throw at it.

We've seen so much devastation. I saw a McDonald's that burned to the ground. I saw a furniture store, a hotel, a Kmart. Really, it's just unbelievable. At this point, 20,000 people or so have been evacuated. Two hospitals actually had to be evacuated. They took the patients south towards San Francisco, towards Marin County to get those people to safety.

Hopefully, the weather cooperates and crews will be able to get the upper hand on this blaze. But for now, things are still looking grim.

Dave and Christine, back to you.


ROMANS: Oh, I hate to see that.

All right. Thanks, Dan.


All right. Melania Trump slamming Ivana Trump in a reality show-like smackdown. At stake in the clash of Trump wives, the title of first lady. Here's CNN's Jeanne Moos.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): First wife versus first lady -- infighting among the harem, read one comment.

It started with Ivana promoting her new book, "Raising Trump". The book "SNL" predicted back when the couple split.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK, Donald. But you just wait until I write my book.

MOOS: Well, now, it's written and the book tour has begun. Ivan describes how she talks to her ex, the president once every two weeks.

IVANA TRUMP, AUTHOR, "RAISING TRUMP": I have the direct number to White House, but I don't really want to call him there because Melania's there and I don't want to cause any kind of jealousy or something like that because I'm basically first Trump wife, OK? I'm first lady, OK?

MOOS: And with that little joke about Ivana being first lady, the actually first lady erupted, through her spokesperson.

Melania plans to use her title and role to help children, not sell books. There's clearly no substance to this statement from an ex, this is unfortunately only attention-seeking and self-serving noise.

Melania certainly seemed to be reacting.

Read one tweet, elect a reality TV star and get the real housewives of Trumpland.

When Ivana and the future president separated more than 25 years ago, it was a juicy story.

He and Ivana had a pre-nuptial agreement.

And though Ivana now says --


MOOS: Once it was over, they made a commercial together.

D. TRUMP: It's wrong, isn't it?

I. TRUMP: But it feels so right.

D. TRUMP: Then it's a deal?

I. TRUMP: Yes.

We eat our pizzas the wrong way.

D. TRUMP: Crust first. MOOS: If only the two wives could share a pizza and exchange notes on a man to whom they both said, I do.

I. TRUMP: If you're good to him, he's incredible to you. If you're bad at him, you're dead.

MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN --

I. TRUMP: Can I have the last slice?

D. TRUMP: Actually, you're only entitled to half.

MOOS: -- New York.


ROMANS: I forgot about the pizza commercial. I forgot about the pizza commercial.

BRIGGS: How could we forget? Yes, Melania's busy fighting cyber bullying.

ROMANS: Well, and you know, I will say, Ivana Trump said that she thinks Melania must be miserable in the White House and she said also when I found is kind to be newsworthy is that she had been offered the ambassadorship to Czech Republic, but she said, I like Saint-Tropez in the summer, I like Miami in the winter, I like a New York --

BRIGGS: Not that no, I'm not qualified.

ROMANS: Yes, I like New York in the fall and spring. Why would I want to be an ambassador and have to even deal with --

BRIGGS: You can't make that stuff up.

ROMANS: There you go. Just a little window, a peek into Trumpland.

Let's get a check on CNN "Money Stream" this morning.

Global stock market mostly higher after Wall Street fell from record levels. U.S. markets closed lower yesterday, still.

I always like to give context, Dave. We've talked about, oh, one day up, one day down. All three major averages are up double digits this year. This is what investors have enjoyed this year. All of this driven by enthusiasm for tax reform, by solid corporate earnings, by a healing American economy and the latest earning season kicks off Thursday. So, we're going to get a real peek into how companies are doing.