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Reporters Given Unprecedented Access to a Bipartisan Meeting Between Lawmakers and the President; Dianne Feinstein Has Defied Her Republican Colleagues and Made Public of the Transcript of the Interview With the Cofounder of Fusion GPS; President Moon Jae-in is Heralding Restore Dialogue With North Korea; Ocean Infinity to Search For Mh-370; The Heavy Rains Have Triggered Mudslides in Southern California; North Korea to Send Athletes Officials to Games; Warriors Coach Criticizes Ball Family Coverage Aired 2-3a ET

Aired January 10, 2018 - 02:00   ET


[02:00:07] JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: This is CNN Newsroom live from Los Angeles. Ahead this hour, unprecedented access to the workings of the White House, but was the bipartisan meeting about reforming immigration or fixing a presidential image?

Walking the talk, South Korea's president outlines his plans of peace on the Korean Peninsula.

Also ahead out to the fire, heavy rain and deadly mudslide in Southern California hit by yet another natural disaster.

Hello and welcome to our viewers all around the world. I'm John Vause, the third hour of Newsroom L.A. starts now.

It has never happened before at the White House. Reporters given unprecedented access to a bipartisan meeting between lawmakers and the president. The issue was immigration reform, but the goal it seems was to show Donald Trump hard at work, wheeling and dealing out on the dealer's style to push back on a flurry of reports questioning his mental health and work ethic. What we saw though was a president who seemed to contradict himself multiple times. At one point, he appeared ready to give in to Democrats on the issue of protecting the so-called Dreamers, children brought to the U.S. illegally by their parents whose legal status is about to expire.


SENATOR DIANNE FEINSTEIN (D), CALIFORNIA: What about a clean DACA bill now and with a commitment that we go into a comprehensive immigration reform procedure like we did back or I remember when Kennedy was here.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I have no -- I think that's basically what Dick is saying. We're going to come out with DACA. We're going to do DACA, and then, we can start immediately on the phase two, which would be comprehensive.

FEINSTEIN: We should be agreeable to that. TRUMP: Yes. I would like to do that.

CONGRESSMAN KEVIN MCCARTHY (R), CALIFORNIA: You need to be clear, though, I think what Senator Feinstein is asking here, when we talk about just DACA, we don't want to be back here two years later. You have to have security as the secretary would tell you.

TRUMP: I think that's what she's saying.


VAUSE: And she was. Republicans have been using the fate of 800,000 so-called Dreamers as leverage to push Democrats to fund the president's border wall with Mexico. Later, Trump tweeted, as I made very clear today, our country needs a security of the wall, on the southern border, which must be a part of any DACA approval. And remember, this was the president elected I-get-tough immigration policy, but now, he wants to mix it a little love.


TRUMP: I feel having the Democrats in with us is absolutely vital because this should be a bipartisan bill. This should be a bill of love. If we do this properly, DACA, you're not so far away from comprehensive immigration reform. And if you want to take a further step, I'd take the heat. I don't care. I don't care. I will take all the heat you want to give me.

You are not that far away from comprehensive immigration reform. And if you wanted to go that final step, I think you should do it. We will do DACA, and we can certainly start comprehensive immigration reform the following afternoon. OK, we'll take an hour off and then we'll start.


VAUSE: So here's the question. Where exactly does President Trump actually stand on immigration, one of the most contentious and divisive issues in this country.


TRUMP: My positions are going to be with the people in this room, come up here. If they come to me with things that I'm not in love with, I'm going to do it because I respect them.


VAUSE: So he will sign anything. Joining me now, former Los Angeles councilwoman Wendy Greuel, Republican strategist Chris Walker, and Michael Shires, associate professor of public policy at Pepperdine University. Good to see all of you.


VAUSE: OK. The president said basically yes to everyone. The meeting seemed to end without any clear direction, but there was one certainty out of this. And that's some of the president's biggest supporters are no furious. Listen to Ann Coulter.


ANN COULTER, CONSERVATIVE COMMENTATOR: I think we can call this the lowest day in the Trump presidency. I mean, he was clearly trying to overcome the bad press of this Michael Wolff book by showing oh, he's in command. But in fact, what he did was fulfill every description of him in the Michael Wolff book. He doesn't listen, he has no command of the facts, he agrees with the last person who speaks to him.


VAUSE: Chris, I never thought I would say this, but does Ann Coulter actually have a really good point?

CHRIS WALKER, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: No, no. Ann Coulter absolutely you know makes her profession on being controversial. You know, the president basically showed some Dale Carnegie 101 today, how to win friends and influence people. Before people listen, I got to be listened to.

He did a great job today of listening, taking in a lot of information, have different view points. At this rate, we would have been it decades ago. But I think you're going to see really there's going to be resolution on this because everybody has a vested interest. There's no win in not getting this done.

And if you listen to the substantive rhetoric that comes from House Republicans as well as Senate Republicans, they absolutely want to get comprehensive immigration reform for finer points. And unfortunately, they (ph) issue emotional things that obviously go into such important thing as where someone's family, where children are, it has really kind of clouded some of the specifics of that. So I think everybody has a vested interest in getting this done. And it is going to get done.

[02:05:28] VAUSE: Wendy, is that how you saw this meeting today?

GREUEL: I did not.


GREUEL: You know, very hypocritical. We're going to have a bill of love. Well, this bill of love was one that is put on because of the fact that he told 800,000, you know, young people in this country, we don't want you and you need to go -- you need to go back. And we're holding you hostage. I think he cited one of the points when I watched that today was to see Kevin McCarthy -- Congressman McCarthy literally jumped up after Senator Feinstein asked a question, which was, you know, we want a clean bill and he said yes.

VAUSE: Which those free pass...

GREUEL: No free passes ready. And then, that's not really what she meant. And I think if you have to tweet later on, I made it clear today means you didn't make it clear in that conversation.

VAUSE: After the meeting, the White House seemed to try and clarify what the priorities are when it comes to immigration. Listen to this.


SARAH SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: During the closed door session, the leadership agreed to negotiate and narrow the focus to four issues, forest security, chain migration, visa lottery, and DACA. They all agreed that those four things would be part of the negotiation. And beyond that then they can move into additional scope.


VAUSE: Michael, we did not hear though any mention of the wall and any mention of Mexico paying for the wall.

MICHAEL SHIRES, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR OF PUBLIC POLICY AT PEPPERDINE UNIVERSITY: Well, you know, I think that when you look at this meeting, in some ways, Donald Trump is a genius because we wouldn't be having this conversation if he hadn't reversed President Obama's executive order. I mean, there wouldn't be a conversation on immigration right now.

So the fact that this is on the table, is a function of the fact that he did that. When you go forward to this conversation, he is trying to negotiate. And my sense is that he is trying to muddy the waters. One of the strategies that I have seen a lot of times with these New York negotiating types, is they want to keep everybody off balance.

And so, they throw a lot of things out there, and then they are waiting for something to happen. And I think at Donald Trump's case, I think he really meant it when he said, if you guys come up with a bipartisan bill, I will sign it. I think he's going to have some piece of a wall in it, or something that he could claim as a wall. But as long as he gets that little piece, I think he'll sign any form of immigration legislation.

VAUSE: This must have been a really, really bad day for Steve Bannon, because the president saw him at immigration reform, and protection for the Dreamers. He got forced out of Breitbart, you know, his last powerbase, the all-right website. And also, what you said the White House announced that the president would be heading to the World Economic Forum in Davos, the ultimate gathering of global financial elite.

Chris, is the Republican Party getting towards sort of a final show down, if you like, between the Republican establishment, and the sort of the Bannon wing of the party?

WALKER: Absolutely not. I think the idea or the premise that Steve Bannon heads even a large group of people in the Republican Party is a total false narrative. Steve Bannon is a character. He is a person that has inserted himself in the process and totally used his influence with Breitbart to maneuver his way in. And when he was in the White House, the administration used that

leverage to give him even more press. Every time he was paired (ph), he loved it because it raised his profile. Every time someone attacked him, it made him seem like he's a figure worthy of actually feeling sorry for.

And so, Steve Bannon is exactly where he belongs today. That's by himself.

VAUSE: OK. Stay with us because we will move on now to the latest with the Russia investigation and Senator Dianne Feinstein. She is the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee. She has defied her Republican colleagues and made public of the transcript of the interview with the cofounder of Fusion GPS, that's the firm which produced that now infamous dossier on Donald Trump.

We have details from Jim Sciutto.


JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Former British spy Christopher Steele was so concerned then Donald Trump was being blackmailed by Russia that he went personally to the FBI. This according to newly released transcripts and testimony by Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson whose firm paid for the so-called Steele dossier. He was very concerned about this represented a national security threat and said, he felt we were obligated to tell someone in government in our government about this information.

Simpson told the Senate Judiciary Committee in closed door testimony. He thought from his perspective, there was security issue about whether a presidential candidate was being blackmailed.

Simpson testified that Steele contacted the FBI in July 2016, and then met with the FBI attache in Rome in September. According to Simpson, Steele told him the FBI, quote, believes Chris' information might be credible because they had other intelligence that indicated the same thing. And one of those pieces of intelligence was a human source from inside the Trump organization.

A person close to Simpson's testimony clarified that Simpson's mention of an internal Trump campaign source actually refers to the Australian ambassador who also contacted the FBI to pass on information he received from then Trump foreign policy advisor George Papadopoulos. In his sworn testimony, Simpson also pushed back against GOP arguments that the research and release of the dossier was directed by Democrats and the DNC saying that the dossier was Steele's work.

Did you have any input or involvement in the drafting of these or input for the research he was asked. No, he answered. And did you edit them in anyway? Again, Simpson answered no. Feinstein's senate office released the transcript of the 10-hour interview at the same time she was sitting across from the president in a meeting. She issued the release without the support of the committee's Republican Chairman, Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa who have argued the committee needed to temporarily protect certain information while an investigation was ongoing.

[02:11:10] CHRIS COONS (D), DELAWARE: I think it's really unfortunate that the majority and minority on the Judiciary Committee have really come to an impasse in terms of being able to make progress. I think in some ways this is the signal, the end of bipartisan cooperation in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

SCIUTTO: In a statement, California's senior senator said she released the transcript because, quote, the American people deserve the opportunity to see what he said and judge for themselves. Adding quote, the window and misinformation circulating about the transcript are part of a deeply troubling effort to undermine the investigation and the potential collusion and obstruction of justice.

VAUSE: Jim Sciutto with that report. Back to our panel now. And, Michael, do you -- when you go through that transcript of that interview, there is not a whole lot in that that is not sort of already known, if you tidbit (ph), why not release it? Why do you think the Republicans didn't want to put it out there?

SHIRES: I think when you're doing an investigation, you want to keep everything inside until you have the results of the investigation, so you can tell the complete story. I mean, I'm surprised as anybody that the founder of an organization that was hired to do this research stood behind their employee. And that's basically what the testimony is.

VAUSE: Wendy, with Feinstein -- Senator Feinstein doing this, is this the end of any kind of cooperation between the Republicans and Democrats or at least the start of the end?

GREUEL: I hope not. I support -- Senator Feinstein and I support her and what did. She's probably one of the most cautious when it comes to our intelligence and all that. She wouldn't do anything that would harm the situation of the country as well as some kind of investigation. What she was saying is transparency is key. There's nothing here that the public shouldn't know. And because the Republicans are going so hard on this particular -- on GPS and suggesting that kind of collusion and that kind of background deals, she thought it was important to put out. And I think this was something she felt very strongly about.

VAUSE: OK. Moving on quickly, almost out of time. The buzz continues around Oprah 2020. If she does decide to run, she's going to lose, so says the president.


TRUMP: You know, Oprah would be a lot of fun. I know her very well. You know, I did one of her last shows. She had Donald Trump, before politics, her last week. And she had Donald Trump and my family, very best. Though I like Oprah, I don't think she's going to run.

I don't think she's going to run.

I know her very well. (END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Everyone loves Oprah. But, Chris, the idea of Oprah running for president, is that at least as possible now as a Trump presidency was back in 2015?

WALKER: I think that the president's election certainly has changed the rules of the game, in terms of what we can expect and what is accustomed and what the usual pathway to presidency is. Certainly, anything's possible. It also to me speaks to a larger level of desperation on the Democratic side that they're promoting this idea so much.

Oprah is a woman who is universally -- well, universally. There are a lot of people who admire her, there are a lot of good things to admire there. But in terms of policy, there's not a whole lot of information that anybody really has. There's a lot of people who are ready to do this because there really isn't a lot of good alternatives on the Democratic side in terms of the candidacy.

Everyone is terrified of the idea Bernie Sanders running again. And they look at Elizabeth Warren, no, that's not going to work. And so, there is a desperation like we've got to find somebody that people really like, that we can counter Donald Trump with.

VAUSE: Wendy, is there desperation or was it just a little bit early at this point? And the other question is, the idea of the celebrity president so far hasn't been exactly smooth sailing, why would Democrats go down that road?

GREUEL: I think there's a long bench of people who are -- I don't think we have even heard half of those that will probably step up to the plate. But I do think that now you know Trump became president, there are people who would have never thought of it before. And I think the conversation is we want someone who is going to lead this country, who is a smart business person, who understands public policy, and is going to be a good advocate for the people all across this country. Oprah fits that bill and I think we'll see a lot of people's names showing up there. It was -- you know, this was the Golden Globe and people are excited. It is about celebrity.

[02:15:16] VAUSE: And, Michael, just to finish it up, you know, do we actually know who the Democrat will likely be in 2020 at this point?

SHIRES: I think we're going to see a roster in both parties. It is as long as we had in the Republican primary last time.


SHIRES: I got to say if it's -- if it's going to be Trump versus Oprah, what a spectacle, the queen of daytime versus the creator of reality.

VAUSE: Oh, it will be a spectacle. Can't wait for it. I appreciate you all being with us. Thank you so much.

WALKER: Thank you.

VAUSE: OK. One day after breakthrough talks, South Korea President Moon Jae-in goes public with his path to peace. Details on that when we come back.


KRISTIE LU STOUT, ANCHOR, CNN: I'm Kristie Lu Stout. In Seoul, South Korea, President Moon Jae-in is heralding restore dialogue with North Korea. He held his New Year's press conference here hours ago, one day after the first inter-Korean talks since 2015. Mr. Moon says he is open to a summit with the North if the conditions are right. And he welcomed Pyongyang's decision to attend next month's Winter Olympic Games.

CNN's Will Ripley is live from Seoul. He has got the details. And, Will, President Moon in the press conference earlier today, he offered reaction to yesterday's talks, but also gave a bit of a roadmap about what's next. What did he say about talks and that possible meeting with Kim Jong-un?

WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's all about dialogue with the South Korea president. And this is something that he has stated from when he ran for president. And this is something that was hit -- both the landmark of the administration under which he served previously. There were two South Korean presidents who visited North Korea.

And Moon Jae-in was a part of that administration. His party is progressive. They're all about engagement. And they feel that talking is better than not talking. And so, frankly, what has transpired here this week is really living up to a campaign pledge, and a pledge that is a lifetime pledge of Moon Jae-in, whose parents were actually born in the north. They fled to the south back in 1950. They were never able to be reunited with their families. This is why the family reunion issue is so important for President Moon, and he's been pushing for it and approach the topic of possible family reunions happening as soon as next month around the lunar New Year.

And he also said that he's willing to meet with the North Korean leader to sit down for discussions if preconditions are met. Obviously, that is a very complex process to come to a presidential summit if -- you know, who is going to travel where, will he travel to Pyongyang, would he invite Kim Jong-un to travel here to Seoul? Those are all details that would need to be hammered out, but key for President Moon now that he has these lines of communication open. He has the diplomatic hotline activated last week.

In addition, there is a military hotline that was also reactivated which hopefully in the eyes of north and south will avoid any miscommunications, any unintentional military escalations. You have the talks upcoming about how to ease military tensions on the Peninsula, even though the biggest issue, the nuclear issue. Obviously, the two sides couldn't be farther apart on that.

But from President Moon's perspective, Kristie, it's all about dialogue. And that's something he is going to push forward with as much as he possibly can because he's stated his goal is to normalize relations with North Korea and solidify peace during his presidential term.

[02:20:42] STOUT: Well, as you point out, these talks are about multiple breakthroughs and quite a thaw in the relationship between north and south that we haven't seen for a couple of years. And ahead of these inter-Korean talks, U.S. President Donald Trump claimed credit how did that go down with South Korean president?

RIPLEY: As you might imagine, Kristie, he was asked about that at his press conference and he gave what could be described as a diplomatic answer saying that President Trump and his administration's policies of pushing -- of pressuring the North Korean government had perhaps created an environment conducive to allowing the kind of discussions that took place yesterday. Listen to his answer.


MOON JAE-IN, PRESIDENT OF SOUTH KOREA (through translator): I think President Trump made huge contribution to make inter-Korean talks happen. I'd like to express my gratitude.


RIPLEY: Of course, there are --- many people here in South Korea who feel President Trump's tweets, his rhetoric, his threats, his insults have only been damaging and destabilizing the situation on the Peninsula, but you certainly won't hear those words spoken by President Moon, at least not publicly. Kristie.

STOUT: Absolutely. That would not be diplomatic at all. Will Ripley reporting live for us. Thank you.

Now, a U.S. based company is aiming to do what has eluded so many, to find Malaysia Airline Flight 370. It was headed from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing when it vanished in March of 2014, with 239 people on board. Suspected debris from the plane has been found across the Indian Ocean. And now, Ocean Infinity has agreed to pick up the hunt one year after Australia, China, and Malaysia ended their own searches. It held the signing ceremony with the Malaysian government a short time ago. This is said to be no find, no fee deal. That means if the plane isn't found, Ocean Infinity doesn't get paid. Our CNN's Richard Quest literally wrote the book on MH-370. And he has more now on what we know and what we still don't know about the lost flight.


RICHARD QUEST, ANCHOR, CNN: It's been about a year since authorities called off the search for MH-370, the missing airliner that disappeared on March 8, 2014, after the flight left Kuala Lumpur bound for Beijing then dropped off radar an hour after take-off. Later, satellite data showed investigators that the plane continued to fly for up to eight hours and finally crashed in the Indian Ocean off the Australian coast. The experts narrowed the crash site to around 120,000 square

kilometers search zone, an extensive and exhausted effort including a deep ocean search found no sign of the aircraft. Then over several yards, debris confirmed to be from MH-370 has washed up along the Eastern African Coast. Still, the main body section, the fuselage of the plane remains missing.

Now, Ocean Infinity, a private company, specializing in seabed intelligence is to take on the task. Ocean Infinity has struck a deal with the Malaysian government to resume the search on a no find, no fee basis. In other words, there's no payment if they don't find MH- 370. So where is the plane, having unsuccessfully searched for it over many months?

In December of 2016, the Australian authorities decided that based on new analysis, the plane was more likely to be in a 25,000 square kilometer area to the northeast of the old search zone. Australia's transport minister said there was no concrete proof the plane is actually there, and the search was never expanded to cover it. So now, Ocean Infinity is reigniting the hopes for answers and closure for the families of the 239 people onboard the missing plane. Richard Quest, CNN, New York.

[02:25:01] STOUT: You're watching CNN Newsroom.

Up next, mud slides are wiping out homes in Southern California. And some families have lost everything. And the danger is not over yet.


VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. You're watching CNN Newsroom live from Los Angeles. I'm John Vause with the headlines this hour.

U.S. President Trump is now making it clear he wants funding for a border wall as part of any immigration deal, but at a bipartisan meeting earlier with lawmakers, he seems to support a number of positions including comprehensive immigration reform, a big burst (ph) of undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children, and broader reform after that.

Turkey is calling on the Syrian government and its allies to end attacks in the city Idlib. The area was meant to be a de-escalation zone, but fighting has reportedly resumed. A (inaudible) more than 100,000 Syrians have fled towards Turkey in recent weeks.

South Korea President Moon Jae-in says he is open to the idea of a summit with the north if conditions are right. He held his New Year's news conference Wednesday in Seoul. Mr. Moon says the ultimate goal must be to rid the Korean Peninsula of all nuclear weapons.

The heavy rains have triggered mudslides here in Southern California, killing at least 13 people and forcing thousands of others to evacuate. Santa Barbara County sheriff says the death toll may actually rise. The rushing water cut off the 101-freeway with mud and debris shutting down that busy commuter route in both directions. Nearly six inches of rain have fallen in parts of Ventura County in the past two days. Recent wild fires have burned acres of brush that would have made this area more resistant to flood. We got details from CNN Miguel Marquez.

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: John, I want to show you the incredible power of water in these storms here coming down from the mountains above Burbank, California. That may look like a raging river. I want you to listen to it for a second. It is actually a street here in Burbank. Water has been flowing down here all day long, the La Tuna Canyon Fire burned about two miles up the hills here. And as it rains, all of that debris, a lot of the burned debris comes down that hill.

Another very good example of the power here, this is a sign (ph). I want to show you. Look inside here, the mud up to the steering wheel in this thing. Mud taking the car from the roof all the way down to the hood.

[02:30:00] And this thing, what do you think this is? I thought it was an SUV earlier this morning, and then took a closer look. That's a pick-up truck, sort of a king-sized cab pick-up truck that just got pummeled. People in the neighborhood said it took out garage doors all the way down the neighborhood as it was coming down. Just incredibly powerful water and debris as this rain just keeps coming down in Southern California. This is not the only place that is hit. But regardless of where you are, it could be raining miles from where you are now but way down in areas that may not even be evacuation zones, this is what can result. John?

VAUSE: Miguel, thank you. Miguel Marquez there. Let's go to Ben Han, he's on the phone from Glendale, California. He was evacuated from his home in Montecito with his wife and son because of these mudslides. Ben, we are glad that you and the family is safe. But considering the fires which swept through that region just -- what, a few weeks ago. The heavy rains and mudslides seem like the worst case scenario right now.

BEN HAN, EVACUEE (via telephone): Yes. You know, we were evacuated before the fires, we spent ten days in Santa Monica. And we were in a mandatory evac zone and for last -- yesterday, we were only in a voluntary evac zone. So, you know, we didn't -- we didn't really expect what happened to happen but it was, yes, pretty scary, our entire neighborhood is under mud right now.

VAUSE: Yes. When you left your house, it was surrounded by mud but the mud had actually stayed outside and looking at some of the photos that you've taken on the neighborhood it seems many -- although it looked close to you had not been so lucky it's an incredible scene.

HAN: Yes. But the house right across -- I mean there were waist-deep mud across the road in this little family neighborhood in Montecito and the house across directly across the street from our -- the mud came straight through her bedroom wall. She had left the house but somebody was staying in that room, she got thrown across to the other side of the room. Our neighbor, Jim, he lives right next door to her, she went in and rescued that lady. There was another house at the end of our street which is parallel to the mountains and the mud came right through the single mom and her two boys and that came right through one of the boys' rooms and miraculously he just -- he survived and they ended up on the roof, they were on the roof from 3:00 in the morning until 7:00 in the morning waiting for rescue.

VAUSE: So this was -- this all started in the early hours of the morning. And you were awake when it all sort of began. What -- can you describe what it's like? What it sounded like? And what were you -- what were you thinking as all of this mud and debris surged into your neighborhood?

HAN: You know, didn't think anything at first I just thought, well, that was really powerful rainstorm. It was five minutes of powerful rain. The power went off that's what woke me up. And powerful rain for five minutes, but I knew that the rain was headed for the mountains and I knew that it was going to be trouble. So I tried to step, so I just made myself something to eat and didn't get two bites into it and then all of a sudden I heard there's thrust and the house shook. And like instantly there was three feet of mud all the way around the house. If you can see the pictures to the backyard, the neighbor's, fences, cars gone. It was incredibly -- incredible how fast it came and how powerful it was.

VAUSE: You say you've obviously you can't go back right now because of the situation. Where are you staying? Do you have a place to live right now?

HAN: We haven't figured that out yet but we have a lot of really incredible friends. That's the thing about Montecito, that's why we live there just incredible friends and just great people there. And we've had so many offers of help but we're in Pismo Beach right now at about an hour and half up the coast. We just want to get out and away from it all so. And there's three other families with us here. So we're all in a hotel on the beach.

VAUSE: You know, it has been such an awful time for so many people in Southern, the wildfires and of course now the mudslides which are being made just so horrendously worse. By the fires destroying so much all the vegetation in that region. We wish you all the very best then, we hope that all of this is over soon and you get back to some kind of normalcy with your life. So thanks for being with us.

HAN: Thank you. I appreciate it.

VAUSE: Take care. OK. A quick break. And then sometimes an apologize just isn't enough. Retailer H&M the racist hoodie and the global outrage.


[02:36:46] VAUSE: Clothing retailer H&M has issued an extensive apology for a horribly insensitive ad, many calling blatantly racist that shows a little Black boy in a green hoodie with the phrase coolest monkey in the jungle. Onto social media right now, H&M pulled the image and also the hoodie from its stores but the backlash continues. Singer of The Weekend tweeted that he would no longer be working with the retailer. He had collaborated with the fashion line in 2017. NBA player LeBron James and entertainer Sean Diddy Combs edited the photo on their Instagram accounts turning the boy into a king. And then for more on this social commentator and entertainment journalist Segun Oduolowu joins us now. Nice to see you. Happy New Year.

SEGUN ODUOLOWU, ENTERTAINMENT JOURNALIST: Happy New Year. It's good to finally see you. VAUSE: Yes, it's been a while. OK. So the racially offensive ads

began early this year.

ODUOLOWU: Typically dove waits year.

VAUSE: Exactly, so it's an early start. But what do you say to those who say, nothing wrong with that, I call my kid monkey or cheeky monkey all the time?

ODUOLOWU: I would say please take your hood off because when it's a black kid there is no amount of apology that's going to sit well. And look there's enough betrayal and enough anger to go around. I would say that H&M, it's not even about an apology anymore it's honestly the time to boycott that store. And I say that not as hyperbole but there couldn't have been a person of color in the room of advertising that thought this would be OK. And that's the bigger issue. So either you are tone deaf, didn't know what was going on or you did it deliberately. Everybody needs to lose their job.

VAUSE: Let's go to number three here in the control room because a one-line apology, the H&M went into full conversion groveling apology mode. You know, it was all over the website basically and our position is simple and unequivocal apology there it is. It goes on to say, our position (INAUDIBLE) we got this wrong, we are deeply sorry. It is obvious that our routines have not been followed properly, this is without any doubt, we were thoroughly investigated why this happened to prevent this type of mistake from happening again. OK. I think I have an idea of how this mistake happened.

ODUOLOWU: Really how? How John?

VAUSE: Let's take a look at the 11 members of the H&M board. Let's take a look. Oh, there we are. H&M has take so white.

ODUOLOWU: Right, right. You know what H&M stands for homogenized. OK? I haven't seen milk that white, I love cereal. So what are we doing?

VAUSE: That's about it. I need to wear my sunglasses on because I'm getting reflection.


VAUSE: But seriously this is the thing, they can open -- to your point. This is a company which clearly if there was a person of color in that room, when that design of that hoodie was being put out there. They would have said hang on.

ODUOLOWU: It's not so much hang on. John, in the full picture that black boy is standing next to a white child.

VAUSE: We get that actually.

ODUOLOWU: And so why is the black kid in the sweatshirt that says monkey and the white child isn't. So please don't give me this bad -- this really terrible apology.


VAUSE: -- because that white kid is actually in an orange hoodie. This is Adam too in the control room and it says survival expert.

ODUOLOWU: What does he bear gorillas? What are we -- what are we talking about here?

VAUSE: This is the thing, how many times can they apologize to say, oops we made a mistake.

[02:40:06] ODUOLOWU: You can't. Because your oops, I made a mistake again this is not a Britney Spears song, oops I did it again. This is, I can't give you an opportunity to do this again. Everybody that was responsible for this needs to be called out either need to lose their job because they don't know what they're doing or they don't realize where society is right now. Kudos to Diddy, to Lebron James, to a lot of different people that came out and doctored the photo or photo and made this kid -- because this kid's going to have to live with this. Like this kid who was just innocently thinking that he was doing a modeling job.

Now, this picture goes viral for all of the wrong reasons. But as I said there's enough betrayals to go along -- to go around. I'd like to know the parents of this kid, how do you let this slide? Because my kid the kid that I don't have, love you honey but not yet. The kid that I don't have --

VAUSE: Or will have.

ODUOLOWU: Or will have is not posing in a shirt or sweaty -- sweatshirt that has that written on it. So the parents where were you? There were so many people that could have caught this before it fell through the crack. That's why there's enough blame to go around. And H&M should be taken to task. Look. I would call on David Beckham who has an underwear line. People need to start pulling their support from an institution that could put this out there, it's not acceptable. And if the women that can wear black on the red carpet of the Golden Globes to show solitary, can we -- you can take that black dress off. You know what that kid can't do we don't take that skin off. That ad is fundamentally racist and it further stereotypes that is dehumanizing to black people and that's why H&M is not going to be let off the hook. Not by me.

VAUSE: OK. He's pulling off that for being independent and it's kind of sums up what's going on here. The problem here doesn't lie in the supposed racism of H&M but instead their misguidedness, their intention wasn't clearly not to cause offense just obviously didn't enter their minds to think seriously about their black customs. It seems time and time again, big companies being H&M or Dove or whoever makes that laundry detergent in China. Well, maybe not them but at least H&M and all the rest. They're oblivious to these issues. Forget about doing the right thing, what about the profit motive. Why are they interested in appealing to black customers whose money is just good as everyone else's.

ODUOLOWU: Thank you. If they -- if your fundamental bottom line, the only color should matter is green. So green is the only color that matters, why would you put this black kid in the sweatshirt unless you're trying to make a bigger statement. And again I can't give you a pass because you showed me 12 white people on there. Somebody's got to know that this is wrong, higher -- but if you want to talk about diversity with the black kid sitting next to a white kid and they're both in sweatshirts. Where is the diversity amongst your board?

VAUSE: None.

ODUOLOWU: OK. We have more diversity right here, sitting right here than H&M, we should run H&M.

VAUSE: We'll do it.

ODUOLOWU: Right. It will be more human and marginalized when they deal with the H&M.

VAUSE: I like that.

ODUOLOWU: There you go.

VAUSE: Good to see you.

ODUOLOWU: Good to see you.

VAUSE: And thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. Please stay with us. World sport is up next. You're watching CNN.

RILEY: Welcome to world sport. I'm Kate Riley at CNN Center. We can start with these as the Winter Olympics now. And we have four weeks to go until the games in South Korea and political statements note, will be banned from the Olympics but this week there will be plenty of headlines involving politics.

[02:45:07] Earlier, the President of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach, says that North Korea's confirmation that they will send a team over the border to South Korea is "A great step forward." There are plenty of details to be worked out but there will be a sizable interest in North Korea's pair figure skating team and of course, their women's ice hockey team as well.

Among the delegation heading over the border will also be an art troop, a visitor's group at a taekwondo demonstration team, a press call and a cheering squad which is already famously adored in South Korea.

Well, note the backdrop to all of this. There are heightened tension on the Korean Peninsula with the North leader, Kim Jong-un threatening to use his nuclear arsenal. And these special talks which happened on Tuesday are really big deal, the first time the North and South have actually spoken in more than two years.

Well, as we touched on it earlier, if they compete, the pair skaters will be one of the main attractions. But, what do we know about these North Korean athletes? CNN's Christina Macfarlane has been finding out for us.

[02:46:20] CHRISTINA MACFARLANE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: It's not really how well they skate that matters, but if they do that counts. Ryom Tae-ok and Kim Ju-sik have become the unlikely focus of the first peace talks in more than two years between North and South Korea.

As diplomats aimed at diffusing a possible nuclear war, instead turn their attention to figure skating. That's because the ice on the Korean Peninsula is being broken over the Winter Olympics, and how these two athletes can compete.

In September, the pair became the first and so far only athletes from North Korea to qualify for the 2018 games. But after missing the Olympic Committee deadline to confirm their places, their participation was in doubt. That was until the IOC, in a move to ensure this week's diplomatic talks were not in vain, extended that deadline with just a month ago until the opening ceremony.

So, what do we know about this figure skating duo from the secret State? Since coming together in 2015, the two have slowly risen through the world rankings. They won medal at a handful of competitions including bronze at the Asia Winter Games in Sapporo, Japan last February.

Ryom is due to turn 19 a week before the games will open, her partner Kim is 25. Plus, some of they traveled from North Korea to Montreal in Canada, where they trained under the watchful eye of Canadian skating coach Bruno Marcotte


BRUNO MARCOTTE, COACHING CONSULTANT: (INAUDIBLE) it's happiness, you know, like a positive and also a passion. You know, extremely at passion about the sport of figure skating, and you know, they're just a joy to work with.

MACFARLANE: After helping them to a career-best performance in Germany to secure Olympic qualification, where for one performance they even skated to an instrumental version of the Beatles A Day In The Life, Marcotte says, the pair remain focused on improving their performance.

MARCOTTE: As soon as the joy is over, the like -- OK, what's next? What do we need to do to keep better enough? You know, in sport, a joy short-lived because as soon as you'd think you'd made it and the train has passed you. So, now what they work? Quickly -- the quickly move forward to want it to know, what they need to do to be better the next time around. MACFARLANE: Well, Ryom Tae-ok and Kim Ju-sik may not win gold or even medal in Pyeongchang, it's their participation for peace rather than a place on the podium that could well be their lasting legacy. Christina Macfarlane, CNN, London.


RILEY: Thanks to Christina for that report. Well, the NBA, of course, is one of the biggest sports league in the world. And his top players are, of course, megastars. But this season, it had to share some of the spotlight with the new personality. LaVar Ball whose son is the Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball.

Well, note as which way from we lifted them, the father first that's how it's become and LaVar have created a circus around himself with a new sport, a clothing line or reality T.V. show. Now, (INAUDIBLE) seems to be over in Eastern Europe, where his other two sons applying in the Lithuanian Basketball League, where some fans are be loving it.

They're drawn to his swagger in the counterculture for (INAUDIBLE). Others feel very differently on one of the most respected NBA coaches has even weighed in. The Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr has been outspoken about the current U.S. President and his politics.

And now, he lamenting for (INAUDIBLE) with what he subscribe as the King Kardashian of basketball.


[02:50:04] STEVE KERR, HEAD COACH, GOLDEN STATE WARRIOR: You know, where we're going is where going away from covering the game, and more getting closer to just sensationalized news and -- it's not even news really, it's just complete nonsense --

Shannon will covering the game and work getting closer to just sensationalized news and news really it's just complete nonsense but if you package that irrational nonsense with some glitter and some ribbon, people are going to watch. Somewhere, I guess is in Lithuania, LaVar Ball is laughing at all of us.

People are eating out of his hands for no apparent reason, other than, you know, he's become like the Kardashian of the NBA or something, and that sells, and that's what is true in politics, in entertainment is now in sports. It doesn't matter if there's some any substance involved with an issue, it's just can we make it really interesting in a -- for no apparent reason. There's nothing interesting about that story.


RILEY: All right, coming up on the shape. Forget three with seem is four. It's the magic number for Manchester City. That was a crucial match for them on Tuesday, and that's it for this week, this season.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) RILEY: We're back, good news from England, and the Carabao Cup on Tuesday. Where Manchester City are on the clasped for the quadruple, as they calling it. They set to lift the league trophy this season, and they also got the Champions League on both domestic cup competitions in their sides as well.

On Tuesday, City were home to Bristol City on the semifinal of the league cup. We'll Bristol had not Manchester United out to the last round and Bobby Reid, penalty, gave them the lead here. Man City, a very hard to beat these days, Kevin De Bruyne had tied up the scores early in the second half for man.

Sergio Aguero, came on to the bench two score the winner in injury- time. It would calls on Bristol, they are a team likely, to be in the EPL themselves next season is the two-legged ties that they feel have a chance to win it.

All right, on the English league cup had some star power this campaign. As we have a look to the semifinal this week, on Wednesday. As Chelsea against Arsenal at Stamford Bridge. The government are looking for redemption how to crashing out to the F.A. Cup at the weekends. But their manager, Arsene Wenger will still be watching from the stance if he continues serving out his three-game suspension.

Meanwhile, his opposite man, Blues' manager Antonio Conte, continues to make headline with his feud with the Manchester United boss, Jose Mourinho. The pair have been trading insults in the media over the last few days. And it's called pretty nasty, it doesn't sound as though, Conte is going to let this one go.


[02:59:59] ANTONIO CONTE, HEAD COACH, PREMIER LEAGUE CLUB CHELSEA: I have this, this look, the person that will be the great, I don't think so. That I think we both save the teams, and we'll see what's up in the future. I think it's not important the association, do you understand? It's not important. I think that he said the serious words, using the serious words and I won't forget this.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just one last --

CONTE: There about -- this is not a problem from the club, this is a problem between me and him. I stop.


RILEY: And that's it from Manchester we live you, we're going to look ahead to another global event on the sports calendar this year. The Commonwealth Game are just around the corner. On April, we will see athletes from some 70 countries had to the Gold Course on Australia.

One of them is the English splinter, Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake, 200 meters is his specialty. He was a semi-finalist at the Rio Games and this how he trains.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) NETHANEEL JOSEPH MITCHELL-BLAKE, TRACK AND FIELD SPRINTER, NEWHAM, LONDON: I'm a sprinter, (INAUDIBLE) clock, (INAUDIBLE) first in across the line wins. It sounds very simple but trust me, it's not. My name is Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake, I'm at Briton England, Commonwealth Games, within 200 meters.

A little, now, a detail that go into the different aspects of the race, maybe the 200 meters sprint, they say the first who emits like free energy, such trains really blast the first 40. Try as train is close to the line as possible, keeping my shape nice and tone, coming on to the homes straight and finish in strong.

To shed minutes that comes out of your time, I don't believe there's an actual (INAUDIBLE). Getting stronger in the weight room, getting post on the track. And allowing yourself to be focused.

The person with the elite as mindset, I believe will always win the race. And it's about the event to this strong, which allows to buy to be (INAUDIBLE) strong, and just come in to post. I go into every ways to win. It doesn't always come out that way but I believe you have that --


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Rear access, cameras roll in the White House