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Government Shuts Down As Trump Marks First Year In Office; CNN: Durbin Says McConnell Is "Scared To Death" Of Trump; House Dems Speak Amid Government Shutdown; Thousands March On Anniversary Of Trump's First Year. Aired 11-12p ET

Aired January 20, 2018 - 11:00   ET



[10:59:42] FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back.

Live pictures right now of marches taking place across the country being billed as the women's marches on this one year anniversary of the Trump presidency.

Also today on this one-year marker, a U.S. government shutdown.

Hello everyone. I'm Fredricka Whitfield in the nation's capital.

After working until almost 2:00 a.m. to try to avoid the scene of a U.S. government shutdown, senators are reconvening now next hour to negotiate how to end the government shutdown.

Last hour House Republicans and Democrats met separately behind closed doors, meanwhile Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is asking the President to meet with him along with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Speaker Paul Ryan and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi today. No word yet from the White House on whether that will happen.

The President meantime is blaming Democrats this morning, tweeting this, "This is the one year anniversary of my presidency and the Democrats wanted to give me a nice present. #DemocratShutdown.

CNN senior congressional correspondent Manu Raju joins us now live from Capitol Hill. So Manu -- what are you hearing about these meetings?

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, there is -- the dividing lines are stark this morning -- Fredricka. I can tell you the Republicans in this conference meeting largely united behind their insistence that immigration should not be tied to any bill to open the government. They are saying coming out of this meeting that the government should be reopened first before we deal with any side negotiations on the issue of immigration before that March deadline where all of those Dreamers -- people under the DACA program -- may lose their legal status. They do not want to tie those two issues together.

But I'm told by a senior Senate Democratic source that they will -- Democrats are insisting that that needs to be part of any funding solution -- some resolution on the DACA issue. Something similar to the so-called Dream Act that Democrats have been pushing for a very long time.

They are insisting there needs to be a quote, "pathway to passage on that proposal before they agreed to reopen the government."

Now Republicans today are trying to make sure that the blame is placed squarely on Democrats. But even some Republicans acknowledge that this is going to be very risky politically if this shutdown goes beyond a couple of days.

Here is a sampling of what the members said going into the meeting.


RAJU: Sir -- do you think the President is showing enough flexibility here in his negotiations with the Democrats?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know where the President stands on this right now. I just don't know.

RAJU: Would it be helpful for him to lay out where he stands?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Of course. That is always been an issue -- whether it is our health care and now on this issue. He needs to be clear about what his position is.

But in the meantime, the government has to be reopened. And there is a lot of blame to go around on all sides. We're in the majority. We control the three branches so we're going to get blamed whether we deserve it or not.

RAJU: What was the mood like in there?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The mood in there is not good. I mean we didn't shut down the government. We voted to keep the government open.


RAJU: So the question is what happens next. Expect Republicans in the Senate to push for a three-week continuing resolution to keep the government open. That also includes extension of funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program. Expect that to happen later today.

But Democrats believe that three weeks is too long. They want it much shorter to force the hands of Republicans to agree to move forward on immigration, to agree to a pathway to passage of that immigration bill.

Democrats on the Senate side are going to try to push for a shorter time frame. Maybe a maybe few days, four or five or six days to keep the government open. Republicans so far are resistant to that.

Earlier today President Trump did speak to Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader about what they plan to do next. But no discussions so far between McConnell and Schumer, and that is really where the agreement ultimately is going to have to come from. Perhaps those conversations may happen later today when the Senate comes back to session -- Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: All right. Manu Raju -- keep us posted. Thank you so much for that.

All right. The White House blaming the Democrats for the political standoff on Capitol Hill; President Trump sending out several tweets this morning lashing out at Democrats including this tweet saying, "This is the one year anniversary of my presidency and the Democrats wanted to give me a nice present. #DemocratShutdown.

CNN White House Correspondent Abby Philip is live for us at the White House. So Abby, the President is tweeting today. Is he also considering a meeting with the Senate and House leadership?

ABBY PHILIP, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well he is definitely on social media. But there are no signs at this White House that there are any plans yet to broker more talks, either here at the White House or on the hill over this issue.

The President -- his latest tweet really pins this on Democrats, which has been the message all along. "Democrats are holding our military hostage over their desire to have unchecked illegal immigration," he said. "Can't let that happen."

Now even while he is saying that publicly, a source close to the White House tells CNN's Jim Acosta that the President does believe that Democrats are responsible for the shutdown. But that the President himself might actually end up getting the blame at the end of the day.

[11:05:04] Now that's a little bit different from what we've been hearing all along and it reflects some concern within this White House that no matter what happens, the President is going to be held responsible.

Now these talks have really broken down over the last couple of days with the White House saying that they do not want to talk as Manu pointed out about this immigration issue. And a senior administration official told me this morning that they believe that the battle lines at this moment are very much entrenched and that Democrats are not going to back this three-week CR that's going to be considered here in the Senate leaving the government potentially shutdown all the way through Monday.

That could be a potentially -- if we get to Monday, it could be potentially disastrous for some of these federal employees who will be unable to work or furloughed.

At the same time, we have heard from some White House officials, many of whom are not working here today, one of my colleagues sent a note to a White House official this morning and here is the message that they got back. "Unfortunately I'm out of the office today because congressional Democrats are holding the government funding, including funding for our troops and other national security priorities hostage to an unrelated immigration debate."

So the message -- the messaging here is consistent both from the President all the way down to lower press aides who have an away message because they are technically not allowed to work today because of the government shutdown -- Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: Oh my. All right. Abby Philip -- thank you so much.

As we continue to look at live pictures from across the country of the women's march taking place; also marking this one-year anniversary of the Trump presidency.

All right. Let's now get the Republican perspective now on this government shutdown. Joining me right now is Senator Cory Gardner, a Republican from Colorado. Senator -- thanks so much for being with me.

SENATOR CORY GARDNER (R), COLORADO: Thanks for having me.

WHITFIELD: All right. So you voted to -- for this bill to keep the government operating. Is it your feeling that it should in no way be tied to immigration and that is the big hang-up?

GARDNER: What I don't understand is why a shutdown and how a government shutdown actually furthers the bipartisan negotiations that we're having over this Dreamer population.

Now, I'm one of the Republicans who is working for a bipartisan solution to try to achieve the four-part plan or goal that the President set out when it comes to addressing DACA. But to shut the government down simply makes no sense.

It's not going to help bring people together on this issue. It's going to partisanize the issue. It's going to partisanize it further. It's going to pull people further apart.

So I really question the wisdom of Senator Schumer for shutting down the government over this issue when we are actually making good progress on trying to resolve this issue.

WHITFIELD: Then, do you have any hope or, you know, are you lacking any confidence that there might be some sort of three-week, you know, resolution -- continuing resolution.

GARDNER: I do have hope because allowing the government to be shut down creates a lot of collateral damage. It is not just making a political point that Senator Schumer apparently wants to make by shutting the government down. It hurts people around the country. It hurts our men and women in uniform. It hurts the civilians that support our war on terror and the effort that they put in to supporting our men and women in uniform around the globe. The CDC may have to shut down portions of its flu program as states report to the CDC where the next vaccine batch needs to go. They are going to have more difficulty getting that done.

Look, this is holding the government hostage to a political issue that Chuck Schumer has decided is ripe.

We have more time to negotiate. Our conversations have been very productive. I don't understand why we would -- why Senator Schumer would decide to shut the government down now when we actually have a chance of accomplishing something for the American people.

WHITFIELD: So the President himself says, you know -- has called himself, you know, a great negotiator and he met with Schumer yesterday -- still unclear what did or did not happen from that meeting. Schumer is proposing that House and Senate leadership meet with the President today.

Do you believe it's a big mistake if the President does not take them up on that offer and, you know, exercise his skill or willfulness on being the great negotiator, the closer?

GARDNER: Yes, I'm somebody who believes in bipartisan conversations and I'm somebody who believes it is important to have conversations with each other about what is going on. But I don't think the kind of negotiation tactics that took place yesterday are going to allow this to be resolved.

What we heard was Senate Schumer say that he doesn't want a continuing resolution because he believes that is a bad way to govern and they brought in politics that they're holding this government hostage to. His solution was an even shorter term continuing resolution, making even worse policy.

Only in Washington, D.C. can somebody take what they think is a bad idea and try to replace it with a good idea and think that they've actually done something good. It makes no sense.

WHITFIELD: So if that is yesterday, do you feel like today is a clean slate, that there is so much more on the line especially since we're talking about hundreds of thousands of people who might not be getting a paycheck for a period of, you know, days and who knows, perhaps even weeks. Do you believe that negotiating today being ground zero, start all over, that potentially there could be some real ground made?

[11:10:06] GARDNER: Well, last night Senator McConnell offered a three-week continuing resolution to see if that would satisfy Senator Schumer's decision to shut the government down. We'll see if that negotiate happens.

And you make a very good point. Look in Colorado alone, in Colorado Springs there are five military bases. Six thousand civilian employees of those military bases face furlough; that is -- those are people who are supporting our space mission. They are supporting our intel missions. They're supporting our war on terror. There are troops deployed in Colorado Springs around the globe and yet Senator Schumer is willing to risk the missions that they are carrying out. It is unacceptable.

The American people -- look, this isn't something where they're going to wake up one day and say, gee whiz, only part of Washington is to blame. An eighth grade student council could run government better than the way Washington is right now. And it's all because people think they can get their way by throwing a temper tantrum.

WHITFIELD: And you keep mentioning Schumer as if it is one man, one person here. And it was your colleague Charlie Dent, you know, of Pennsylvania who said he wishes the President were more engaged. And that he is challenging the President to be more engaged.

So it wasn't that long ago when, you know, businessman Donald Trump said, you know, the buck stops at the White House. When the government shuts down, it is the President who really is at the wheel. Is it different this time?

GARDNER: Well, the President doesn't have a vote in the Senate or the House. It is up to the Senate and the House to pass legislation. It is our job to keep the government funded. And Senator Schumer decided that he was not going to allow that job to be done.


WHITFIELD: But haven't some of your colleagues complained that they don't know exactly what the President wants. And so if they had a clear vision or view of what the President wants, what he would sign, they would be able to construct something.

GARDNER: Well, Senator Schumer spent several hours with the President yesterday and many of us were over at the White House the week before talking about what the President had hoped to put together that he could support, that we all could support on an immigration address -- immigration solution to DACA.

Those are the things that we continue to work on. And what is frustrating I think the President was very clear in the four things he wanted to address. Republicans and Democrats have decided to work together, we are working together on a solution.

Senator Schumer knows that and yet he made a decision to shut the government down last night. And the collateral damage of a government shutdown -- it is not just trying to make a point on one political issue of immigration or other issues.

What he's doing, he's willing to hurt people, men and women who have nothing to do with immigration, nothing to do with the Democratic Party and nothing to do with the Republican Party other than showing up each and every day trying to work hard for the people of this country and to do their public service job and do it very well. And Senator Schumer is telling them that he would rather hold them hostage to a political objective.

WHITFIELD: We'll leave it right there. Senator Cory Gardner --

GARDNER: Thank you.

WHITFIELD: -- thank you so much. Good luck today.

GARDNER: Thanks.

WHITFIELD: All right. We're watching tens of thousands of people at the women's marches taking place across the country from street to street from Philadelphia to the nation's capital and to Los Angeles.

Stay with us.


WHITFIELD: All right. Welcome back.

Happening right now -- you're looking at live pictures of major cities across the country where hundreds of thousands are gathering to kick off this year's women's march in Charlotte, Denver and Chicago and New York.

Let's get to Polo Sandoval in Philadelphia. Polo -- what is the scene there?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Fred -- you've seen people taking to the street all over the country, Philadelphia certainly not an exception. Here along Benjamin Parkway we are seeing a virtual sea of people coming together as they march towards the main venue for the speaking event.

Among them Carla Cos (ph) who's visiting from Maryland -- you came here to Philadelphia not too far away, but what is the main message? You participated recently a year ago. What changed in the last year and what hasn't and what is the main message today -- Carla, from you?

CARLA COS, WOMEN'S MARCH ATTENDEE: My message isn't that much different than it was last year. I have a lot of difficulty with understanding whether Donald Trump understands that there other opinions in this world besides his. The government is for the people that he governs, not for him.

So I'm here to make it a point to say I'm here. I have a voice. I have the right to say it.


SANDOVAL: Some of the inaction from last night and lawmakers unable to reach a deal and, of course, the President joining in on that as well and the shutdown. Does that change things today at all for you being in a shutdown?

COS: It changes things for me in that I have many concerns about what people are not getting as a result of the shutdown. Like today everything is still going smoothly so something is functioning. But there are people who are going to be looking for their Medicare checks, their Medicaid checks.

There are people who actually need services that the government is supposed to be providing especially people with disabilities. These things are important for all the people in this country not just for Donald Trump.

I mean he can take them away and give the money to arms if he wants to, but he actually needs to find a way to take some money and put it to the people that actually need it.

SANDOVAL: Carla Cos -- thank you for taking the time. Thank you so much.

COS: My pleasure. Thanks.

SANDOVAL: Again, just one of several participants that you'll here from not only concerns, Fred, but also questions about what happens next amid this government shutdown and, of course, many of those concerns about the President, the certain reality as Carla told me a little while ago that he may be living in that perhaps does not reflect many of the people here today.

So that is the situation here in Philadelphia with a high turnout, certainly high security -- police keeping an eye on the crowd. So things, of course, very peaceful today.

WHITFIELD: All right. Polo Sandoval in Philadelphia -- thank you so much.

All right. Let's head a little bit north now to New York. Alex Marquardt is there. Alex -- what is the scene?

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi there -- Fred. It's pretty loud out here. The party is underway. The rally is about to start here in New York. We're right on the edge of Central Park on New York's upper west side.

[11:20:06] You can see here the crowds have started to gather; the marchers who are going to start marching in just about an hour and a half's time. This crowd goes all the way back ten or more blocks.

The march last year was around 400,000 people. So far this year they've registered around 85,000. We are expecting more than that.

Here you have people from all walks of life -- mothers with their kids, fathers out here with their sons. All sorts of signs -- some very colorful that we can't show you but others a bit more appropriate for family television.

Down here "Nevertheless, she persisted" -- of course, that line from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell about Senator Elizabeth Warren. And right next to that, "I am woman, hear me roar."

Now of course, this is being called women's march but it is really a march that covers the gamut of issues. People out here fighting for equal rights for immigrants, for people of color, for people with disabilities, for people with different religions.

And people have come from all over the place. These are not just New Yorkers. I spoke with a woman who came down here from Vermont. I spoke with a student who is from Oregon. And they were telling me that this is not just about women's rights, this is about human rights.

So Fred, what we're expecting in the next few minutes is that the rally is going to start right here in the southwest corner of Central Park. There will be speakers including politicians, activists, some celebrities and surprise guests and then the march will get underway around 1:00 p.m. And they'll march down to 43rd Street, all this wrapping up in the mid-afternoon -- Fred.

WHITFIELD: All right. Alex Marquardt in New York -- thank you so much.

All right. Let's go west my friends, to Chicago. Ryan Young is there. Ryan -- what is happening?

RYAN YOUNG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey -- Fred. The program really has just gotten underway here. And you can see the large crowds that have already started to show up here. Last year there were 200,000 people. And you could see it stretching all the back in the direction there.

People who said wanted to be here because they want to show that they want change and they want to see change happen over some time.

Look, you were here last year and you told me, what brought you back out here for a second year in a row?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My daughter's future.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it was so awesome that last year everybody got to come together and not just for their own reason, but for the fact that everybody can come together and celebrate those, no matter how you feel. And so I think that really motivated us to come back.

YOUNG: What do you want your daughter to experience in terms of the future? Because I know a lot of people were talking about gender bias, they're talking about changes (INAUDIBLE). What would you like to see change in this country?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would just like her to know that she has endless possibilities and that she's safe; and that when women and men are together that we can create a great community and a wonderful country.

YOUNG: There's been a lot of conversation about the #MeToo movement. How has that impacted you being a young person seeing this?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it's hard sometimes for our generation to really comprehend something as serious as cases, especially not just in Hollywood but everywhere. But I think it is important for our generation to understand that we cannot be ok with this any more. And that we need to stand up and finally change the views and what is right and that what we will tolerate.

YOUNG: Thank you so much for sharing with us.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It will happen. It is happening.

YOUNG: If you see the crowd is energized, and we're right in the middle of this. Once again, the crowds are still gathering. We have another hour or so before these people will start marching towards the Federal Plaza.

Right now we have performers on the stage. So Fred -- a lot of energy, a lot of people showing up; but I look at the numbers, they're a little down from last year but people keep saying more people are starting to march this way.

WHITFIELD: All right. Ryan Young in Chicago -- thank you so much. Thanks to all my colleagues there dotting the map.

And we'll be right back.


WHITFIELD: All right. Welcome back. Live pictures right now across the country from coast to coast. Women's marches taking place on this one year anniversary of the Trump presidency.

Hello again, everyone and welcome. I'm Fredricka Whitfield live from our nation's capital.

All right. Welcome back to our special live coverage from the nation's capital.

Today is the first anniversary of President Trump taking office and the U.S. government is shut down.

Republicans wholeheartedly blaming Democrats; just moments ago Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said this.


REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA), HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER: For the idea that they would shut this down for a program of DACA that is not -- we've been in negotiations. We had a meeting, a bipartisan and bicameral where everybody in that room agreed to working on four issues with dealing with it -- the DACA, the border security, the chain migration and the merit based. And we've been having those meetings.

Even they walked out of my office the day before saying there was good progress. They weren't able to make the meeting yesterday. But to turn-around and shut the rest of the government down over something that's not shut down, to me that is irresponsible.


WHITFIELD: All right. Let me bring in my panel now to discuss all of this. CNN political commentators David Swerdlick and Matt Lewis; also with me Jim Kessler, he is the former legislative policy director for Senator Chuck Schumer; and Brian Maguire is the former chief of staff for Senator Mitch McConnell.

Welcome to all of you. Good to see you.

[11:29:52] All right. So David -- you first. You know, we've got some new CNN polling. Not completely positive in the direction of what is happening here -- 56 percent of people polled saying that avoiding a shutdown was more important than DACA. While 34 percent say continuing DACA was more important than avoiding the shutdown. But then here we are. So, what do you say to the numbers?

DAVID SWERDLICK, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: So, I think, Fred, there is a poll that you could find for whatever position you want to take in this issue. If you are the Democrats and you want to fight for DACA, polling shows -- there is polls out to Quinnipiac and CNN and "Washington Post" this week, they all say that Americans overwhelmingly want the DREAMers to stay.

On the other hand, those numbers you just read from the CNN poll, narrowly Americans say it is not important enough for a shutdown or reauthorizing CHIP. if you are the president, he's got 40 percent approval in the average is maybe 38 percent in some polls.

That is not good, but he was only at 45 a year ago today. So, the bottom hasn't fallen out on him. So, everyone could find a number that justifies their stance at this moment.

WHITFIELD: And then Brian, this just into CNN now, a Democratic source saying that Senator Dick Durbin attended a meeting on DACA talks and said McConnell, I'm quoting now, "McConnell is scared to death," end quote, of Trump and limited by Paul Ryan's agenda. What is your response on that? This kind of you know, leadership by fear or vice versa.

BRIAN MCGUIRE, FORMER CHIEF OF STAFF FOR SENATOR MITCH MCCONNELL: Well, I can guarantee that Mitch McConnell is not scared to death right now. I think he's fairly serene about this situation. I think the polls that were just cited is good reason for him to be serene about this. Namely that a third of the country thinks it is worth doing this over this issue.

And about three-fourths think it is foolish. So, Schumer shutting the government down over this issue seems to me a completely pointless exercise and one that Republicans generally are sort of perplexed by.

WHITFIELD: So, it's interesting that because it wasn't just weeks ago in that bipartisan meeting at the White House it was very clear, Feinstein made it clear, that we want to address immigration, DACA first. The president had a different interpretation of what she was saying, but then tried to seemingly bring people together to say something is going to happen. And no matter what, I will sign anything, and I will take the heat. What changed?

MATT LEWIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, look, I think the president is an unreliable negotiating partner. It is really hard to cut a deal because depending on the last person that spoke to him, he may come down differently.

So, in defense of Democrats, they may argue, look, we have to insist on DACA as part of C.R. because we don't know that we can negotiate an immigration deal. So that is a fair point for Democrats to make.

I think, however, that they may -- normally there is a skew where Republicans generally historically get blamed for shutdowns and there is a whole bunch of reasons for that. But one of the problems Democrats have this time is that DACA is not imminently in danger.

So, in other words, there is no danger that DREAMers are going to be deported tomorrow if this isn't fixed. And so why would you sort of force a government shutdown in order to prevent something that, yes, it is possible that a month from now the Supreme Court could intervene, but as of now, it is not an imminently urgent issue.

WHITFIELD: So Jim, tell that to DREAMers, though, who are, you know, really scared to death over what will happen next and some sort of protections is what many of the Democrats were looking for by trying to squeeze this into the measure.


WHITFIELD: What went wrong? Did they overplay their hand?

KESSLER: I'm sure this is one of the points that Senator Schumer made when he talked to President Trump. This is a problem of Trump's making. He's the one that rescinded DACA several months ago. He's the one that said we're going to have a solution. A ticking time bomb ends in March which is very, very close.

And look, President Trump had an agreement twice in January, you know, in which it seemed like that there was a deal and including yesterday with Chuck Schumer and this isn't a game of poker, it is more of a game of bridge. You need to have a partner and Donald Trump is playing like the dummy in this one.

And he's just been very unreliable, and I think when it comes to the blame game and I know that is a Washington trick, I think Donald Trump is the one who will be in trouble on this.

WHITFIELD: There are a lot of lives at stake here. Whether we are talking about DREAMers or the 850,000 government workers who are worried about when they will get the next paycheck. But it is not -- if you are going to call it a game, it is also a game of some really insulting bad language coming out of the White House.

We hear Sarah Huckabee-Sanders talk about this is not about legislation, but she's calling people losers here.

SWERDLICK: Right. You have the losers comment in the statement last night. This is on top of the s-hole comments last week that were reported out of a closed-door meeting with the president. I think --

WHITFIELD: It is like a game of insults. SWERDLICK: It's a game of insults and I think that Senator Schumer actually played it to perfection last night when he made his last statement on the floor. He not only said, look the Democrats are united except for the few that he essentially let in his caucus vote the other way from his party because they are in tough red states and facing re-election.

[11:35:13] But he laid out -- look, I spoke to President Trump yesterday face-to-face and I put border wall funding on the table and still couldn't get a deal. And he said, I wrote it down, he said it is their responsibility to govern, referring to the Republicans and they failed. That was Schumer last night.

Senator McConnell and Trump haven't had a robust answer to that charge. Even though, yes, there is peril for Democrats. Could I make one quick point. To Brian's point, I think the reason I agree with you that Senator McConnell is probably not nervous at this point about his position.

But I think Democrats had to do this. They had to show Republicans that they would take a hostage. They don't want to shoot the hostage. They had to show that they would take a hostage because Republicans have been doing it to them for several years and this was their opportunity.

WHITFIELD: But then five Republicans voting against this from states where Trump carried it. So, I mean, this isn't a giant gamble, is it?

MCGUIRE: I think it is a huge gamble on the Democrat's part. If you read "The New York Times," it is clear that Democrats are hoping in November people forget about the shutdown. That's what they are gambling that people forget about this and they feel like they need to do this right now to appease their base. But hopefully by November other voters in these red states will have forgotten about it and that shows where the leverage is here and that is on the Republican side.

WHITFIELD: Ten months to go, right, roughly before that. All right. We'll find out how much American voters will or won't forget at this juncture. Thanks so much, everyone.

Live pictures right now of the marches taking place across the country. Images right now out of Denver. We'll be right back.



WHITFIELD: All right. Straight to Capitol Hill right now, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

REPRESENTATIVE NANCY PELOSI (D-CA), MINORITY LEADER: -- the problems start from the top and have to get solved from the top. The president is a leader, and he has to get everyone in a room and he's got to lead, President Trump. And now one-year anniversary, a big fat failure, F, for that first year. So, it is no use having another C.R. unless we have the terms of engagement on how we go forward on the parody and the pay for and the pensions, on the DACA and on the border security.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Isn't it better to have the government open while you negotiate these matters on the side? Have a CR for a few days -- or a few weeks.

PELOSI: This is the fifth one. Secretary of Navy has said -- his comment, he said that -- well, Secretary Mattis said, it just created unpredictability and makes us rigid. We can't deal with new revealing threats and it is about as unwise as it can be.

The secretary of the Navy had similar words to say about this. This is no way to have a government, it is not only bad defense, it is about transportation, about education, it is about all of our meeting the needs of the American people.

And the crux of the matter is the Republicans do not want to invest in a domestic agenda and they are using the kids as an excuse. They used the children of CHIP as an excuse. They are using the children of the DREAMers as an excuse. Not to address the fiscal discussion that we must have. Mr. Hoyer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, let me just say this. We do not want a shutdown and we have made that clear all along the way. Now if you are going to have negotiations --

WHITFIELD: All right. Remarkable comments from the Capitol Hill right there. Nancy Pelosi saying just before we took her live here from my producer that she said they are willing to go short-term if they have some sort of agreement on DACA, but you did just hear from her there, live where she said Republicans don't want to invest in domestic agenda.

She said they are using kids an excuse from CHIP to DREAMers and she also made that challenge to the president of the United States saying it is up to him. He's got to get everyone in the room and work on something.

All right. Now also happening right now from coast to coast, live pictures in major cities across the country. Hundreds of thousands are gathering to kick off this year's women's march.

We have reporters on the ground on this one-year marker of the Trump presidency. Miguel Marquez is in Los Angeles. Alex Marquardt is in New York. So, Miguel, let's go to you first in L.A. What is happening?

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Look, it is hard to get people together in Los Angeles for anything in big numbers. It is 8:45 in the morning on Saturday. There is a massive crowd downtown for the women's march.

I will show you what is going on down here. This is the very start of the march and they will march over to Grand Park later in the day. People are incredibly excited to be here. The chopper shots from one of our affiliates shows how big the crowd is starting to gather.

I could tell you last year they had about 50,000 people who preregistered for the event and they had about 750,000 people show up. This year, they have 300,000 people who have preregistered for the event.

[14:45:04] So, they are expecting crowds in the millions, to sum it up, while last year was about women's rights and that is certainly the case here. This year, there is a very fine political point on it. One sign I saw said -- it said, "Grab them in the midterms" -- Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: All right. Miguel Marquez, thanks so much in L.A.

Meantime, let's go to New York now. Alex Marquardt is there. So, Alex, what is the scene?

ALEXANDER MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, just like in L.A., there is excitement here in New York. We're obviously a couple of hours ahead of time. The rally has started here. The -- you could hear speeches going on in the background.

The crowd here is listening to speeches from women's right activists, immigration activists, and political activists. There's going to be a couple of celebrity guests. This is the front of the march that is supposed to start in around 90 minutes' time.

The crowd goes back around 10 or 15 blocks. There are tens of thousands of people out here, not just women and girls but men and boys as well. There were 400,000 people who came out last year's march.

Today on the first anniversary of the Trump inauguration, there are around 85,000 people who have been registered for this march. We're expecting several thousand more on top of that. Now, this is of course a march for women's rights.

For women's parody with men, but this is really also an all- encompassing march and the women I've been speaking with here today talk about making sure that people of all creeds and colors and of all religions, people -- immigrants and people with disabilities have the same rights as everybody else in this country.

So, this is not just a march for those things. This is also a very much a march against President Donald Trump on the first anniversary of his inauguration -- Fred.

WHITFIELD: All right. Alex Marquardt, thank you so much.

In New York, live pictures right now across the country from the nation's capital and beyond of the women's march. We'll be right back.


[11:51:41] WHITFIELD: All right. Welcome back. As women's marches take place across the country from coast to coast. We'll take you now to Philadelphia. That's where we find our Polo Sandoval. So, Polo, what's happening there?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fred, there certainly is a massive crowd. This is Ben Franklin Parkway. If you look all the way down, this massive crowd, people with signs in hand. These are people who turned out since early this morning to participate in this women's march.

Something we saw last year, about 50,000 people turned out last year. Organizers expecting that we could potentially see the same numbers here as all those folks have gathered along Benjamin Franklin Parkway and at the base of those iconic rocky steps which is where you'll find many of these demonstrators including my friends here.

If I could grab you for a few moments. You're live on CNN. You have been taking part in these kinds of marches since you were 11 years old you were telling me. What's different this year?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What's different this year? It's just a volatile time in this country and whatever we can do to have our voices heard. That's why I'm here.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's the same, you know, so bad right now, it's just so terrible in this country right now. We have to stand up for other people especially with the things going on with DACA and, you know, just women's rights in general. We have to stand up --

SANDOVAL: Immigration?


SANDOVAL: -- does that change things?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I mean -- we would have been here either way.


SANDOVAL: Ladies, thank you so much. You're from Philadelphia?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, from Philadelphia, yes.

SANDOVAL: Thank you so much for taking some time. These are just two views we've seen here, Fred. The crowds are certainly here. Again, expecting at least about 50,000 people here in the city of brotherly love.

WHITFIELD: Quite sizable. All right. Thank you so much from Philadelphia, Polo Sandoval. Now to the nation's capital, where we find our Suzanne Malveaux at the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. What's happening?

SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hello, Fred. Well, a lot of enthusiasm, excitement here, really, the shadow of the Lincoln Memorial. I want to show you the crowds. A lot of people calling this a sister's resisters. There's been a call for people to run hard, run scared, but just run. They mean run for office. They mean register and vote.

The last year I covered this, it was really cram packed. An incredible sea of people, very spontaneous. This, very different, about 10,000 or so. That is very strategic, to move it to the west, to Los Angeles, and particularly to Las Vegas tomorrow, which is a critical state for folks to address in the midterm elections.

But here you're not going to have those kind of household names like you saw last year, Madonna, Scarlett Johansson, Ashley Judd. These are local politicians. Most of them from neighboring Virginia who say they have seen just a sea change in the politics when it comes to putting a Democratic governor in their state, when it comes to the first Asian-American woman on the state legislature, as well as the first transgendered individual.

We just heard from Senator Tim Kaine from Virginia who did actually mention the government shutdown, calling it Trump's shutdown. And also taking a dig, if you will, mentioning his running mate, of course, Hillary Clinton, saying she would make a much better president than what we see now.

[11:55:13] But a lot of people feeling like they have the momentum. They were outraged. They were angry last year. Now they feel they have got to take it to the next level. Very soon after the rally is over, they will go ahead and head to the White House, up Constitution Avenue, to bring that message to the president -- Fred.

WHITFIELD: All right, Suzanne Malveaux at the Lincoln Memorial, thank you so much.

All right. Just minutes away now from the U.S. Senate reconvening, the U.S. government shutdown. Can a deal be reached? All of this happening on the one-year anniversary since President Trump's inauguration. We'll be right back.


WHITFIELD: I'm Ana Cabrera live in Washington. Thank you for being with us on this special coverage day, a government shutdown, a standoff in the Senate, and thousands --