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Hoyer on Trump's Televised Meeting; Compromise over Dreamers; Weather Check; Food As Fuel Sugar Detox; Harvard Professors on Authoritarian Signs. Aired 8:30-9:00a ET

Aired January 11, 2018 - 08:30   ET



[08:31:18] (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. STENY HOYER (D), MARYLAND: Mr. President, comprehensive means comprehensive.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No, we're not talking about comprehensive. Now we're talking about --

STENY: No -- no, no -- no, we are. We are talking about comprehensive because --

TRUMP: If you want to go there it's OK because you're not that far away.

STENY: Mr. President --


ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: That was President Trump and House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer in an interesting exchange during negotiations that were televised live for nearly an hour. Lawmakers will meet again today to try to hash out that permanent solution for dreamers.

SO joining us now is the man in that video, House Minority Whip Congressman Steny Hoyer. He has been a key lawmaker involved in the negotiations and you saw him there next to President Trump.

Good morning, congressman.


CAMEROTA: It was really fascinating to watch that. What was it like inside the room?

HOYER: It was a little surreal. It was the first time I've participated in a meeting like that ever, and I've been meeting with many of his predecessors. But this was a unique meeting --

CAMEROTA: But meaning what? What, congressman? Like meeting -- televised or what made it so different? HOYER: Well, having it televised, all of us expected after five

minutes the press to be asked, as is normally the practice, OK, you've got your spray, you've got the pictures of the meeting, now you're going to leave and we're going to get down to business. But that was not the plan apparently.


So that moment that we just played, did you feel -- it seemed like you felt the need to have to explain comprehensive immigration reform to the president.

HOYER: Well, I -- what I was indicating that we have to get to comprehensive immigration reform, but the positive part of the meeting was, first of all, that the president agreed that we needed to take care of the dreamers. That they needed to be protected and they needed to be protected in a way that he has suggested, and that is passing legislation to do just that, which is what he said when he overturned the DACA ruling of the Obama administration.

CAMEROTA: But is it your understanding that the upshot of that meeting was that you were going to get a clean bill for the dreamers or what -- what came out of that meeting?

HOYER: No, what --

CAMEROTA: What's the solution?

HOYER: What came out of that meeting was suggestion by the majority leader of the House, Mr. McCarthy, that there were a number of items that they wanted to discuss. Obviously when you have a negotiation, each party, each side has items that they want to discuss. And, obviously, that's going to be appropriate. So we'll do that.

But we had a meeting yesterday with Mr. McCarthy and Mr. Durbin -- Senator Durbin, Senator Cornyn and myself to try to get a process which we can discuss the issues that both sides want to discuss. We believe central to the -- any action that we take is the protection of the dreamers, making sure that they stay here in this country, the only country that they really know.


HOYER: And a policy that is supported by the overwhelming majority of the American public. And I would suggest apparently supported -- he was articulating, you know, his support of that with Dianne Feinstein. Senator Grassley said the same thing.

But at the end of the meeting essentially the president said, is there anybody here in the room -- and there were 24 members, 17 senators, 7 House members -- is there anybody in this room who disagrees with protecting the dreamers? Now he said DACA, but the dreamers. And no one indicated any opposition to that.

So I think there's a consensus. I think there's an overwhelming majority of the House. I think there's a majority of the Senate who all, once a bill gets to the floor which protects dreamers --


HOYER: We'll vote for it. So that's what we're discussing.

CAMEROTA: Well, I'm glad that you now have some clarity on it because I have to say there were some moments during the meeting that your facial expression belies that clarity. I know you don't have a monitor right now to see it, but we're playing a montage of your facial expressions throughout the meeting, which at times seemed bemused, I would say. What was going through your head at that time?

[08:35:15] HOYER: I think that was accurate. I think that's an accurate interpretation. I was bemused because Majority Leader McCarthy jumped in on a number of occasions, which I think you had shown as well, to try to clarify what the president had responded to because when Senator Feinstein, in particular, and Senator Grassley indicated they were protecting dreamers, let's do that first and then let's move on to comprehensive immigration reform, the president agreed with Senator Feinstein and then the majority leader moved in and said, well, no, what we really mean is -- and he expanded the president's answer. So I was bemused at that.

But this is complicated. It's -- this president is different than most, in my opinion, in terms of what he says and his flexibility following up what he says. So -- but I -- this is a very, very serious matter. It needs to be resolved. The -- 86 percent of the American people think that there's no good policy sending these young people --


HOYER: Back to a country they don't know, a place that they haven't grown up in. They're Americans in every sense of the word and they're extraordinary. Those of us who have met dreamers are just so impressed --


HOYER: With their commitment to this country and their commitment to positive, value-added actions for our country and their communities.

CAMEROTA: And so as you stand there today, do you understand, if a wall is connected to the protection for dreamers, must the wall be built in order for the dreamers to stay?

HOYER: What I understand is the president is concerned about security at the border. We're concerned about the security at the border. I think there's an overwhelming opinion that we need to maintain security at the border. How you get there will have to be discussed. The president talks about a wall. We talk about other items that we think will be much more effective and that will have a much greater consensus. We think, frankly, the building of the wall, its cost is not justified either by its efficiency or effectiveness. And therefore -- but that will be -- there's no doubt that the --

CAMEROTA: But you think the president is open to rejecting -- to ultimately working his way around to not having a physical wall?

HOYER: Look, I think the president has talked about a wall through his campaign and continues to talk about a wall and he's going to continue to talk about a wall. We'll have to see.

But what I took from the meeting was a consensus, not on that, but a consensus on the fact that the dreamers had to be protected.


HOYER: And the president was prepared to sign a bill to do just that.

Now, what other aspects will be part of the discussions? I think you saw that in the meeting. It was covered, as you say, uniquely in terms of those discussions.


HOYER: But I am working very hard with Leader Pelosi, Leader Schumer, Senator Durbin and Leader McCarthy --


HOYER: To get us to an objective ASAP, as soon as possible.

CAMEROTA: Congressman Steny Hoyer, thank you very much for sharing your impressions. We'll be very interested to see what happens today.

HOYER: Thanks a lot.


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: All right. A Louisiana teacher who spoke her mind at a school board meeting ends up in handcuffs. The reason is why. The ordeal is captured on video. Did the marshal go too far? You judge.


[08:42:15] CAMEROTA: The death toll rising in southern California's mudslides. Seventeen people are dead, including children.

Check out this survivor video. The driver and her brother -- oh, my gosh -- are lucky to be alive. Their car was pushed by mudslides as they rushed to evacuate. Oh, my gosh. That storm caused this -- the mudslides are on the move. The storm is on the move, I should say.

CNN meteorologist Chad Myers is here with our forecast.

What are you seeing, Chad?

CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Well, that video was hard to watch. Luckily we know that they got out of there.

The storm has now moved into Arkansas and Oklahoma and it will eventually make a rain event for the northeast and also a snow event for the Midwest.

This weather is brought to you by Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, packed with goodness.

So the storm is on the move and so are the temperatures. We have warmed things up in the east, we have made a rain event, even flash flooding in the northeast possible. The ice is going to melt. The snow is going to melt. And the rain is going to come down.

On the back side, from about Cincinnati right on up through Columbus, Ohio, into Buffalo, there will be ice and snow mixing in behind it. But the majority of this storm, for all the big cities, is a rain event. The humidity is back. You can feel it in the air. The snow, though, from upstate New York, right on through Erie and down into Columbus, Ohio, that's our forecast.

We do cool down a little bit, but at least, Chris, this reprieve in the weather has allowed CVS to restock the Chapstick and the Carmex because we were completely sold out down here. Everybody's lips were chapped.

CUOMO: You go through a lot of lip balm, do you?

MYERS: I do.

CUOMO: Do you? And what is your type of choice?

MYERS: I use the Carmex in the little blue can.

CUOMO: Good to know for giving season. See you later.

MYERS: All right.

CUOMO: New this morning, the nation's biggest employer is giving some workers a raise. Walmart is increasing the starting hourly wage for all workers to $11. Eligible employees will also get a one-time bonus worth up to $1,000. Walmart's CEO crediting the new tax law for allowing the company to provide the new benefits.

CAMEROTA: OK, so there's this rally today in support of a Louisiana teacher who was arrested at a school board meeting. This is Deyshia Hargrave (ph). She was questioning why the school's superintendent was going to get a big raise while teachers, like her, were struggling. That's when she was asked to leave the room. And after a while she did. And then -- well, she was escorted. And then this happened.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What are you doing!


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you kidding me!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stop resisting.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stop resisting.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You just pushed me to the floor!


CAMEROTA: All right, it is not clear if that deputy city marshal acted on his own or under the direction of a board member. CNN has reached out to the city's marshal's office for comment. As for the teacher, Hargrave, she is not facing charges. And she says she is waiting for an apology.

[08:45:11] Your thoughts, counsellor?

CUOMO: Well, the issues will be obvious. It will be about use of force. You have every right to address the government. You have a right to peacefully assemble. But if you become a distraction in those kinds of events, you can be asked to leave. The amount of force that is used to help you leave or to make you leave winds up becoming the consideration.

CAMEROTA: Right. Yes, I mean I think that she was within her rights to ask the school board why aren't teachers getting a raise --

CUOMO: She was. But we don't know --

CAMEROTA: And the superintendent is getting a big raise. I think that's --

CUOMO: Right, that's a legitimate issue.

CAMEROTA: And she seemed measured, I mean, in the parts that we --

CUOMO: Well, we only see this, right.

CAMEROTA: Well, I did read the report on it and she sounded like she was measured and reasonable but they didn't like what she was asking and told her to get out.

CUOMO: And did she continue asking?


CUOMO: Did she not allow any other conversation to take place?

CAMEROTA: That I don't know.

CUOMO: And, if so, did she become a distraction? You know, there are going to be issues about it. You hear the officer saying, don't resist. So we don't know what happened and how she wound up on the ground.

CAMEROTA: Right. You heard her say I'm not.

CUOMO: Right. So we'll have to see. Certainly no clear answer from that video.

CAMEROTA: All right, meanwhile, two political scientists say that President Trump fits the description of an authoritarian. How did they come to that conclusion? We discuss with "The New York Times" reporter who spoke with them.

CUOMO: But first, if you have an out of control sweet tooth --


CUOMO: It might be time for detox.


CUOMO: CNN's Lisa Drayer shows you how to cut back in "Food as Fuel."

CAMEROTA: I don't want to cut back.

CUOMO: You're sweating.


LISA DRAYER, CNN NUTRITIONIST: With a doctor's approval, a sugar detox can help you drop unwanted pounds and feel better in just a few weeks. Here's one plan you might want to try.

For the first three days, cut out all sugar. That means no fruit, starchy vegetables, dairy, grains, alcohol and artificial sweeteners. For the first week after that, you can add one apple and one unsweetened full fat dairy food per day, along with some higher sugar vegetables and high fiber crackers. Up to three glasses of red wine per week are allowed.

On week two, you can add berries, another serving of dairy and starchy vegetables. Grains are permitted in week three, along with more fruit, dark chocolate and another glass of red wine.

Week four is the home stretch. You can drink up to five glasses of wine each week now and have two daily servings of starches. After that, an occasional indulgence is allowed.

And for more details on this detox, check out



[08:50:22] CUOMO: Two Harvard professors are compiling a list of four warning signs to determine if a political leader is an authoritarian. The signs go from denying a legitimacy of political opponents, to tolerating violence. They say, quote, with the exception of Richard Nixon, no major party presidential candidate met even one of these four criteria over the last century. Donald Trump, four for four.

Let's get "The Bottom Line" with "New York Times" columnist Nick Kristof. He interviewed both of the Harvard professors behind this book.

What do you make of their suggestion?

NICHOLAS KRISTOF, "NEW YORK TIMES' COLUMNIST: Well, I mean I think it's ominous when -- there's certainly been talk about authoritarianism and whether President Trump meets an authoritarian standard. And these are scholars who have looked at other countries, in Europe and Latin America, and what they argue is that we tend to think of authoritarianism arriving with a coup d'etat, or revolutions in the dramatic. They argue that it typically, actually, these days, comes through somebody taking elected office, typically a populist, and then gradually whittling away at the morays, the values that underpin our political system with things like condoning violence or delegitimizing opponents and -- or, say, talking about changing libel laws.

CAMEROTA: I mean we're seeing this today, this morning, just this morning these things came up. And just let me put up the graphic for everybody at home who's following along because they have these four warning signs. So you've talked about them. But just so everybody can see them in one place, a leader who shows weak commitment to democratic rules, a leader who denies the legitimacy of opponents, so this morning he's been tweeting about Hillary Clinton, a leader who tolerates violence, we saw that during his rallies during the campaign and then things that he's said about Charlottesville, a leader who shows some willingness to curb civil liberties or the media. There's the quad-fecta for you. I mean we've just seen him talking about libel laws for the media today.

KRISTOF: That's right. That's right. That's right. And, you know, I don't think that the end result of this is that we're going to end up as Nazi Germany or as Hugo Chavez's Venezuela.

But I do think that there is a coarsening of our political system and a real reduction in the effectiveness of our political system. It does matter when a person who becomes president is urging followers to beat the crap out of rivals and saying he's going to front their legal expenses. That -- all that matters. And their point is that we have -- as a society we have to be robustly challenge this, not necessarily by in turn going after that individual so much as by standing by these institutions and these rights that are the underpinning of a democratic system.

CUOMO: The pushback is, for whatever categories they came up with, this is an exaggeration of Trump because the reason he gets a laugh so often when he says ugly things is that people don't really believe him. They believe it's just yap coming out of him. It's just part of the show, the act.

KRISTOF: And I think there is actually something to it. I think a lot of what he has said is bombast and indeed he's said a lot of things that he has not followed up on. But, at the end of the day, it matters not only whether we change laws, but also whether we change the democratic norms that govern how we operate. And he isn't necessarily changing laws, he is sure helping to change those norms. It was a process that began before him, but he -- I think he accelerated it. CAMEROTA: And so many people, Democrats primarily, are worried about

what they saw last year. They considered 2017 to be a very dire year. I've heard some liken it to the apocalypse. And yet you are here and you've written a great column about -- that we need a fresh perspective on all of this. 2017, you say, was the best year in human history. So give everybody your evidence.

KRISTOF: So, in journalism, we tend to focus on the bad news. You know, we cover the planes that crash, not the planes that take off. But -- and all that's important and there are a lot of threats, but it seems to me that the most important thing happening in our time is essentially the defeat of global poverty, illiteracy.

So last year -- we think of 2017 as a terrible year. Every day now 217,000 people worldwide are lifted out of extreme poverty. Every day. Another 300,000 people get electricity for the first time.

CAMEROTA: How did that happen? Why was 2017 such a year of that kind of --

KRISTOF: So the --


KRISTOF: This is an ongoing process.

CUOMO: Right.

KRISTOF: I mean it wasn't just 2017. So in the 19 -- up until the 1960s, a majority of human beings had always been illiterate, had always lived in extreme poverty. And now fewer than 15 percent are illiterate, fewer than 10 percent live in extreme poverty. You know, we are privileged in our lifetimes to see this extraordinary change in the essence of what humanity is like. And this is continuing. It's accelerating.

[08:55:12] CUOMO: So you're asking to afford perspective, but both are true, right? Things are getting better on one level but things are still worse than they should be, even here at home. You look at the poverty rate in this country, the literacy rate in this country, the level of education, none is where it should be.

KRISTOF: Absolutely. But if we only focus on the problems, then I think that pessimism actually leaves us feeling helpless and perhaps empowers the forces of make America great again, which I think aims for a nostalgia for a time that never really existed. And, ideally, that recognition of that backdrop of progress, which I think we don't acknowledge enough, should galvanize us to challenge those injustices, those threats that remain before us.

CAMEROTA: It's such a good perspective. I mean diseases are down globally. Childhood mortality. It's just great to keep that in mind and, Nicholas Kristof, you always do a great job of giving us perspective. Thanks so much for being here.

KRISTOF: Good to be with you. CUOMO: Nick, appreciate it.

All right, a quick programming note, what would Senator Bernie Sanders say tonight about all the good things that are going on because of the president? We're going to put him to the test on primetime at 9:00 p.m. Eastern. >

CAMEROTA: And CNN "NEWSROOM" with John Berman starts after this break. We'll see you tomorrow.


[09:00:10] JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone. John Berman here.