Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

Trump White House; Searching for Taiwan Quake Survivors; 2018 Winter Olympics; SpaceX Successfully Launches Falcon Heavy Rocket; U.S. Stocks Come Roaring Back, Asia Markets Mixed; Philippines Crushes Sports Cars In Duterte Graft Warning; Athletes Arrive In South Korea For Winter Games; Pressure Builds On Conte After Another Defeat. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired February 7, 2018 - 02:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[02:00:00]

JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: This is CNN "Newsroom" live from Los Angeles. Ahead this hour, the U.S. president says he would love a government shutdown over immigration, but even more than that, he would love a really big military parade through the streets of U.S. capitol.

At least four dead, dozens missing after a powerful earthquake jolts Taiwan.

And the world's most powerful rocket puts an electric car into orbit.

Hello, welcome to our viewers all around the world, great to have you with us. I'm John Vause. This is the third hour of "Newsroom L.A."

Just a day after the Dow's biggest one-day point drop ever, U.S. stock markets have come back. Markets in Asia have followed, but that enthusiasm did not last. Tokyo and Sydney ended low higher. Hong Kong and Shanghai though both in negative territory.

Wall Street started Tuesday with another (INAUDIBLE) briefly moving moving into correction territory down 10 percent from its recent high. But by the end of the day, (INAUDIBLE) finishing at 567 points, raising almost half of Monday's 1,100 point loss.

CNN's Paula Newton is watching the market from Seoul, South Korea. I guess you know exactly the bounce back many markets had been hoping. It's kind of muted is some Ways. So, the relief that many were feeling may be tuning in to some concerns about what they can expect to the weeks ahead.

PAULA NEWTON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, certainly not the technical relief rally that people in Asia may have been hoping to see. I mean, here in Korea, in Seoul, it's now down a little bit more than two percent. Samsung stock down 3.4 percent as we speak. A little of the market is about to close.

A little bit surprising again though when we start to incorporate things like currency exchange rates, trade, a lot of worries in a lot of fronts especially when it comes to the Federal Reserve in the United States and whether or not they're going to hike rates and how quickly they will do that.

There are a lot of concerns here in Asia about countries that essentially rely on those exports to other markets principally the United States and Europe until there are few jitters.

I have to tell you though, cryptocurrency is very popular here in Asia and the appetite for risk does seem to be back in a way. We have seen the gyrations in cryptocurrency like bitcoin. Just in the last 24 hours, some of them up between 15 and 25 percent. So if that's anything to go by, we might be at a business as usual cycle. The volatility though apparent here to stay.

VAUSE: Twenty-five percent of nothing is still nothing. Paula, the U.S. Congress passed another short-term spending bill. This will avoid a government shutdown. It still needs government Senate approval. The big picture here, you know, there is no guarantee either the Republicans or Democrats will come to agreement on a budget.

The president says he would welcome a shutdown of immigration, so there is a lot of uncertainty with the U.S. How is that playing into global markets which are already facing increasing volatility as it is?

NEWTON: Well, look, when you look at the American economy in 2017, considering all the deregulation, the Trump administration promised they will get to and they got to it, and that has gone a long way, that with the tax cut. And yet many economies are looking at the United States and thinking, are the best days behind us here?

When we talk about things like a government shutdown, the fact that Congress is so dysfunctional, they can't get anything done, that might rule out even getting an infrastructure bill through in 2018. And then we have to say, those trade wars. You know, if President Trump feels pressure on things like a government shutdown and can't get anything done with Congress, he may be able to get something done on trade.

And going into mid-term elections, you're going into a lot of those constituencies where tough talk on trade really helps the Republicans. And so when you're looking and you're putting all of that together and you're sitting here in this part of the world thinking this is not good for us, and so a lot of jitters about the unpredictability of the White House and what kind of trade wars might be ignited in the months to come.

VAUSE: Yes, the disrupter in chief keeps going. Paula, good to see you, thank you.

Joining me now, CNN political commentator, Democratic strategist Dave Jacobson and Republican consultant John Thomas. Now we have the president saying if the Democrats don't support tougher laws on immigration, so be it, shut the government down. Listen to this.

(START VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: If we don't change it, let's have a shutdown. We'll do a shutdown and it's worth it for our country. I'd love to see a shutdown if we don't get this stuff taken care of.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: John, that seems like an odd threat for the president to make given that immigration is not part of the budget deal which is currently being hammered out between Republicans and Democrats. The whole immigration thing is being pushed to one side.

[02:05:00] So why is he -- want to shutdown -- explain it.

JOHN THOMAS, REPUBLICAN CONSULTANT: Well, DACA is nearing to expire.

VAUSE: Expire, but it's not part of the budget negotiation.

THOMAS: Correct, but I think for him he is just stating his big overwhelming priority that he wants to see funding for a wall, he wants to see increased border security funding, and that's his top priority. I don't think we can get to a shutdown.

He knows it's bad for him, just like we saw in the go around. He did everything he could to avert the shutdown. But I think he is laying out his policy focused to the Congress saying you got to give me something and tell me when you're going to give it to me or I'll shut this whole place down.

VAUSE: You don't think he got a little confused and --

THOMAS: It's possible.

VAUSE: OK. Dave, there has been some progress between Democrats and Republicans towards this long-term budget deal. Despite what the president says has been (INAUDIBLE) from the Democrats, his Republican lawmaker Barbara Comstock and the president at the end of her -- what she has to say.

(START VIDEO CLIP)

REP. BARBARA COMSTOCK (R), VIRGINIA: We don't need a government shutdown on this. We really do not. I think both sides have learned that a government shutdown was bad, it wasn't good for them. And we do have have bipartisan support on these things. And I think we need to talk about these cases that are going on.

TRUMP: We're not getting support from the Democrats on this legislation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: On that case, so, you know, the Republicans say there's bipartisan support from the Democrats. The president is not part of the negotiations, he says there's not. But regardless, if these talks collapse, did the president just embrace the next shutdown even though John thinks it won't happen? Did he step on a rake?

DAVE JACOBSON, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR AND DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: It's possible. I mean, I'm just glad that there are level-headed Republicans out there who understand fundamentally that we need bipartisanship in Washington because it's broken at this point.

But I think largely like my issue is yesterday Donald Trump was criticizing Democrats, asking for loyalty and saying that it was treasonous that they didn't applaud him when he gave the state of the union. And then flip it to 24 hours later, and he says he'd love a government shutdown. That's treasonous. Shutting down the government. I mean, it's incredibly --

VAUSE: (INAUDIBLE) treasonous than not clapping, but it's too much.

JACOBSON: It's pretty bad. The guy is sick in the head.

THOMAS: Well, the challenge for the president is hypocritical in a sense over a couple of weeks ago, the president was accusing Democrats of holding tight on their policy proposal. The Schumer shutdown, Schumer was the one who shutdown the government for his policy proposal and now Trump is doing the same thing. That is a challenge.

VAUSE: (INAUDIBLE) saying let's embrace unity and come together and trey and work all this out, you know, and he say, it's like shut it all down. OK, we mentioned that immigration is now separate to the budget. The president has proposed a path to citizenship for 1.8 million so-called "dreamers".

They are the people who were brought to the United States as children, brought by parents, had no choice in the matter like growing up here. This is what the White House Chief of Staff John Kelly had to say.

(START VIDEO CLIP)

JOHN KELLY, WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF (voice over): There are 690,000 official DACA registrants and the president sent over what amounts to be two and a half times that number, to 1.8 million. The difference between 690 to 1.8 million were the people that some would say were too afraid to sign up, others would say were too lazy to get off their asses, but they didn't sign up.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Too lazy, too terrified. That's, you know, may be one way of looking at it. But, Dave, when John Kelly was appointed chief of staff, many hoped that Kelly's character would rub off on the president. Is it possible that the president's character has rubbed off on John Kelly?

JACOBSON: I think you're hinting at something that's very possible. I think perhaps he has been brainwashed by the president because John Kelly's statement today underscores the fact that the White House has become a cesspool for racism and bigotry. And all the staffers are increasingly starting to sound more and more like Donald Trump.

John is a Republican, but he doesn't talk about Latinos in a racist way like Donald Trump (INAUDIBLE) John Kelly did today. And I think there is a big disconnect between Republicans perhaps on Capitol Hill or out in states like California and the Republicans who are hovering around the White House. VAUSE: And this is the point, because, you know, John, you know, when you look at the facts, you know, the DACA case, the "dreamers", they have a very high success rate in starting businesses. They go to college. They work hard. They're not lazy.

THOMAS: Not all of them.

VAUSE: The average. They have a higher average of college entrance and starting businesses.

THOMAS: Yes, that's true, well, I think the DACA -- DACA recipients have a higher -- I think "dreamers" might be slightly lower, but with that in our full of General Kelly to say that, absolutely. I mean, he should be the spokesman for the administration.

But were some people afraid to sign up? Probably. Do some people not know how to sign up? Probably. Were some people lazy? Maybe. Should he have said it? No. I don't see what he has to gain from it. What he has to gain is saying President Trump was very magnanimous in going beyond the DACA and trying to give a pathway

[02:10:00] to citizenship for all "dreamers."

JACOBSON: (INAUDIBLE).

VAUSE: OK, so here is how the White House press secretary, Sarah Sanders, respond when asked about Kelly's remarks.

(START VIDEO CLIP)

SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: We're focuses on actually getting a solution. And frankly, I think if anybody is lazy, it's probably Democrats who aren't showing up to work and aren't actually getting to the table to make a deal on this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Dave, this goes to your point about, you know, the sort of not necessarily belligerent but really tough language from almost everybody in this White House.

JACOBSON: And that's why there is the disconnect when it comes to the budget negotiations and the C.R. It's clear that Donald Trump is not part of the negotiation and the process, what's going on in the Senate or the House, because he clearly thought there was some immigration hooked to that.

VAUSE: Right.

JACOBSON: And there wasn't. And so these guys are like being left out, so as Sarah.

VAUSE: OK. The president now has the Democrat memo on the FBI. This is the (INAUDIBLE) Republican (INAUDIBLE) FBI corruption in the Russia investigation. Donald Trump has five days now to decide whether or not he will declassify it making way for its release. This is what Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan said today.

(START VIDEO CLIP)

PAUL RYAN, SPEAKER OF THE UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES: I think what you see here is Republicans are for letting all of this information out there, provided that we scrub for sources and methods. The Republican memo was written to make sure that sources and methods were not compromised so that full disclosure could occur. We do not now know whether that's the case for the Democrats but it has to go through that scrubbing process.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: And that's just not true because here is the recent reporting from a lot of news agencies including The New York Times. This is theirs. The Justice Department has warned repeatedly that the memo, the Republican memo prepared by Republican staff members on the House Intelligence Committee, is misleading and that its release would set a bad president for making government secrets public including sensitive sources of information and methods of intelligence gathering.

John, you know, so, OK, so we know that Paul Ryan says there is not exactly accurate. But we are now in a situation where the president just released a Republican memo without even -- said he released it without reading it. And he may not give that same standard to the Democrats.

THOMAS: Well, I think the memo does get released. I've also heard conflicting information, people who read the memo, I heard on the Republican side who said Adam Schiff purposely put in sources to make it more difficult for the president to release the memo.

So we want to make sure it's scrubbed. The big (INAUDIBLE) we had what (INAUDIBLE) week before was that people were going to die when the Republicans released the memo, that there were sources in the memo. I read the memo. No one has died.

And I didn't see any sources revealed in the memo. You got to obviously be careful, but the memo needs to be released. I think Trump will do it, but you have to proper on how you do things.

VAUSE: The way it was explained to me as being a problem is that -- someone gave me this example, who works for intelligence agency, it's like, if you know that Aunt Sarah always stands up at 6:00 at night and toast the queen, and you're not the only person who knows that, and that information seems completely totally irrelevant, is included somewhere, then you know you're the only person who knows that, then you're the person who gave it to them.

And that's how these sort of sources are exposed. It may not be obvious to us, but it's obvious to people out there.

THOMAS: Well, then you shouldn't never declassify anything, the JFK document, I mean, the argument is --

VAUSE: They were declassified 30 years later. We know this time period which exchanges --

THOMAS: But bottom line is the memo should be released.

VAUSE: Yes.

THOMAS: And if you look at it from a time period, we are not from the time that Schiff wrote the counter memo. We're not that far from the time that the Republicans are -- I think it was Trey Gowdy who wrote the Republican memo. It took about three weeks to get that out. So, we're about the same time line.

VAUSE: You know, there was was this interesting exchange between, again, Chief of Staff John Kelly and a pool reporter on Tuesday about the memo. Here we go. Has the president read the Democratic memo? Kelly, he hasn't, it's pretty lengthy. Has he read the whole thing? Kelly, no, no, I just gave it to him. He will read it after this, question. Kelly, oh, of course yes, we'll get some people down to debrief him.

Dave, the Democrat memo is 10 pages long. I mean, you know, admittedly the Republican was three and a half. This isn't war and peace we are talking about here. I mean --

JACOBSON: John Kelly is supposed to be the adult in the adult day care center. He is supposed to make sure the president does his job in his due diligence. I'm not surprised it's 10 pages long. Congressman Adam Schiff is a former federal prosecutor. He is a very substantive person.

So I am sure he dotted every "I" and crossed every "T" which is a good thing because the Republican memo as the Justice Department said was extremely reckless and it was misleading obviously. So I am glad he is doing his due diligence.

Here is the issue, John. If Donald Trump retracts a lot of this information or doesn't release it publicly, that poll that just came out by Quinnipiac today that said 53 percent of Americans believe that Donald Trump is obstructing the Russia investigation is just going to tick up.

VAUSE: OK. Finally in the midst of all the turmoil, the world is facing Russia investigations and nuclear annihilation, constitutional crises. The president wants a great big military parade

[02:15:00] just like the one he saw in France.

(START VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: One of the greatest parades I've ever seen, it was two hours on the button, and it was military might, and I think a tremendous thing for France. We're going to have to try to top it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Yes, so the request has gone to the Pentagon. John, the White House says this is all about showing appreciation for the troops. This is all about Donald Trump.

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: I could see the argument for appreciation for the troops. But I think even more than that is you look at a lot of other countries, they have these military parades as a show of force.

VAUSE: Russia, North Korea.

THOMAS: Yes.

VAUSE: This is dictatorship, you know, China.

THOMAS: It's not -- I don't believe they do it to show that they're dictators. They show that their country is strong. And strong as a military force.

VAUSE: They do as a threat.

JACOBSON: Can I just say, I actually think this is a response to Donald Trump's tweet on North Korea with my button is bigger. My military is bigger. I hope not.

VAUSE: We know the president has long wanted a big display of patriotism and U.S. military might.

JACOBSON: Yes, he said this many times.

VAUSE: He wanted this for long so far. It's only been sort of what he got -- this moment on the campaign. Take a look.

(START VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Enemies of freedom, face the music. Come on, boys, take them down. President Donald Trump knows how to make America great, deal from strength or get crushed every time.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: The Freedom Kids. You know, Dave, dad had to sue Trump to cover their expenses. I mean, (INAUDIBLE) gotten so far.

THOMAS: I feel sorry for those children.

JACOBSON: Those girls have guns. What are you talking about?

(LAUGHTER)

VAUSE: They should lead the parade.

(LAUGHTER)

VAUSE: In front of the missile or big truck or something. OK, guys. Dave and John, good to see you.

Steve Wynn is stepping down as CEO of Wynn Resorts, the global gambling empire he build. Allegations of sexual misconduct by Wynn have prompted Nevada's gamin board to launch an investigation. The 76- year-old casino tycoon denies the allegations which came to light last month in an investigative report by The Wall Street Journal.

Wynn said he has found himself in an avalanche of negative publicity and could not continue to be effective as CEO. He resigned as finance chairman for the Republican National Committee. That happened last month.

Still to come here, rescue operations are on the way in Taiwan after a deadly earthquake shook the island. And the U.S. vice president has a message for Japan. We stand with you against the North Korea nuclear threat.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VAUSE: Rescuers are searching collapsed buildings after a 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck Taiwan. At least four people dead, more than 200 injured, dozens more are missing. Several strong quakes have struck Taiwan in recent days. CNN's Kristie Lu Stout is following the story from Hong Kong. She joins us live. Kristie, this quake

[02:20:00] struck just before midnight and buildings collapsed. A lot of people trapped in these buildings. All of these are making rescue efforts extremely difficult. Now that there is light of day, what are the search crews dealing with?

KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN JOURNALIST AND NEWS ANCHOR: Right now, search crews are dealing with namely four collapsed buildings or near collapsed buildings in downtown Hualien City. That is where we are even picking up these dramatic scenes of devastation from Taiwan after that major earthquake struck overnight.

Four people are confirmed dead, 243 people injured, and critically now the number is 85 people remained missing. They remained unaccounted for. This is according to Taiwan authorities. This 6.4 magnitude quake struck late on Tuesday night just off the east coast of Taiwan near Hualien County.

Rescue crews are there. They are racing against time to save more lives. In fact, 236 people have been rescued so far. Earlier, the president of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen, took to Twitter earlier to thank the rescue teams and the first responders. And she said this, quote, thank you to our first responders for their tireless efforts in Hualien.

Rescue operations have been continuing night and day. Right now, 145 people remained unaccounted for. John, I should add that this tweet was sent about four hours ago. Of course, that number has been updated to 85 people remained unaccounted for. Tsai Ing-wen adding, we will not rest until all are found.

Again, the focus of the rescue effort is in downtown Hualien City. At least four buildings there in the disaster zone are tilting or already collapsed. We are keeping a close eye on the Marshal Hotel, another building, the Beauty Inn, as well as (INAUDIBLE) building in downtown Hualien. This is where the rescue workers are scrambling to go the rubble to find additional survivors.

They are racing against time. Not only that, they are racing against the danger of even more aftershocks. Since this major earthquake overnight,. there was a number of tremors including a 5.4 aftershock that hit Hualien shortly after that large earthquake. Back to you.

VAUSE: As we look in these images, in particular the Marshal Hotel, on the side pretty much there, also leaning towards the side, where one of the rescue efforts continues. Is the damage localized just to this downtown area of Hualien or is it for the most spread out beyond that, or is it very localized?

LU STOUT: Yes, it is pretty localized in terms of the hunt for survivors right now. Again, the number is around 84. Many of them have been tourists. In fact, 50 Japanese tourists were pulled from the rubble and rescued earlier today. There is cracks in the road.

There is some infrastructure damage, but the focus is on this collapsed buildings in the downtown part of the city. As you know, Taiwan, this area of Hualien County, no stranger to earthquakes. You know Taiwan is part of the "ring of fire." Thankfully, this is an earthquake that struck off the east coast of Taiwan, not on land.

Historically speaking, no quake much smaller in size had struck on land. It would cause even far greater damage. But still, we are waiting to hear the latest from these rescue workers. Over 80 people unaccounted for. The race is on to find them and to save them.

VAUSE: Very quickly, Kristie, looking at this hotel which is badly damaged, it does raise the question about building standards, you know, for the government there which is very keenly aware of the impact and the damage which earthquakes can do.

LU STOUT: Yes, absolutely. Taiwan does respect modern building safety standards. Usually they are in place. For example, the Taipei 101 building, that iconic very tall skyscraper, the tallest building in Taiwan, that has been constructed to withstand wind shear and of course major earthquakes.

As mentioned just moment ago, Taiwan is no stranger to earthquakes at all, but whenever a major earthquake like this takes place and we look at scenes like this playing out, of this partially collapsed or fully collapsed buildings, the question always arises about building safety. That investigation will kick-off once the rescue operation wraps up. Back to you, John.

VAUSE: Kristie, we appreciate your update, thank you. Kristie Lu Stout there live in Hong Kong.

The promise to stay shoulder to shoulder from the U.S. vice president to Japan's prime minister. Mike Pence is meeting with Shinzo Abe before heading to South Korea for the Winter Olympics. He said that United States will stand beside Japan in the face of threats from North Korea. Earlier, Mike Pence is at a missile battery which will be used to defend Japan in case of incoming North Korean missiles. In the meantime, another North Korean delegation has arrived in the south for the games. This is one of the largest teams I've crossed inside the peninsula. Paula Hancocks has more.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Another North Korean delegation arriving here in South Korea. This time, 280 members, many of them from a cheering squad. You also got the Taekwondo demonstration group and of course the North Korean media, all crossing into South Korea this Wednesday, and they are heading to the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.

It just comes a day after we saw the art troupe arrived by ferry on the east coast of South Korea. They didn't have the best welcome (INAUDIBLE) as they were looking out of the window of that ferry. They would have seen that there was a number of protesters on land. Now, it wasn't a massive protest,

[02:25:00] but it was enough for them to have realized that not everybody is welcoming the North Korean delegations with open arms. Now, for these demonstrators, they believe that North Korea has got everything that they want and not had to give anything up in return and many of them not supporting this joint women's ice hockey team or walking out together at the opening ceremony.

But it is a small contingency and there are others that do support what is happening here at the Winter Olympics. We know that U.S. Vice President Mike Pence is in the region. He is in Japan. We have heard from him. We heard from the U.S. secretary of state, when talking about the possibility of a meeting between the vice president and Kim Yong-nam, the ceremonial head of state of North Korea. He will be here for the opening ceremony.

Neither one of them outright denied that there would be a meeting. Both of them said, we'll see, we haven't requested anything. So you can imagine the speculation here is ripe that there could be some kind of meeting between the U.S. and North Korean delegation with the backdrop of the opening ceremony.

Now, also, there are some concerns of an outbreak of the norovirus. We know that 1200 security guards have been relieved from duty for the time being, 900 military personnel being brought in to try to keep security going. But at least 30, more than 30 of them have tested positive for the norovirus.

This is also known as the winter vomiting bug. Not just in one area but in the couple of different areas. The CDC in Korea is moving in to try and contain it and make sure that it can't spread any further. Obviously, not something you want when you have so many people in such close proximity.

Paula Hancocks, CNN, Pyeongchang, South Korea.

(END VIDEOTAPE) VAUSE: A short break and then back to the future. SpaceX launches the Falcon Heavy rocket, giving the U.S. a capability in space it has not in decades.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VAUSE: You're watching CNN "Newsroom" live from Los Angeles. I'm John Vause. Thanks for staying with us, everybody. We'll take the headlines now.

Stock markets in Asia are mixed after Wall Street's big rebound on Tuesday. The Dow gained 567 points, recovering almost half of the record point loss from Monday. Tokyo and Sydney finished higher on Wednesday. Hong Kong and Shanghai in negative territory.

President Donald Trump says he would love to see a government shutdown if Democrats don't agree with his plan to tighten immigration laws.

U.S. government will run out of funding again on Thursday. The House passed a short-term spending bill but that now heads to the Senate.

[02:30:00] Dozens of people are missing after Taiwan was hit with 6.4-magnitude earthquake late Tuesday. At least four people have died, more than 200 have been injured including a number of tourists. Four buildings collapsed including a number of tourists. Buildings collapsed including a hotel and a crane report in to help the rescues

U.N. wants an immediate ceasefire in Syria after two days of heavy airstrikes around Damascus. Syrian warplanes have been bombing a rebel-held suburb killing 75 people on Tuesday including one monetary group and that includes women as well as children. The area is supposed to be a de-escalation zone after peace deal strike by Russia, Turkey, and Iran last May.

Well, a history-making day for SpaceX. The privately owned company has successfully launched the Falcon Heavy Rocket.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Tens of thousands of onlookers gathered in Florida to see the liftoff of the world's most powerful rocket. Three million watched online as the Falcon Heavy headed deeper into space. Starman the rocket test dummy strapped into a red Tesla roadster with David Bowie's Space Oddity blasting on an endless loop.

Danny Olives joins us now, he's a former NASA astronaut and a mission assurance expert. Good to see you, Danny. Thank you. This is a such a great day. There has been so much bad -- negative news. It was an uplifting moment, you know, to watch this all happen. And as such as this launch was about restoring the U.S. capability in space. This was clear about the future. And the future here is seems NASA wouldn't be doing the heavy lifting.

DANNY OLIVAS, FORMER NASA ASTRONAUT: Well, I certainly think that -- so first of, kudos to the SpaceX employees and all the engineers, a phenomenal job in today's launch. It was absolutely beautiful. And what I really think that this shows us there's an opportunity for government and private partnership to accomplish some of these missions. They're going to be hard, it's not just about blasting off the planet but there are lot of challenges associated with getting human beings to and from Mars which is ultimately the destination for both organizations.

VAUSE: And what was even more amazing about all of this is before the launch, Elon Musk, the guy, you know, behind SpaceX, he was getting success less than a 50-50 chance. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ELON MUSK, CEO, SPACEX: I don't really think this would work. When I see the rocket liftoff I see like a thousand things that could not work and it's amazing when they do. I've seen rockets fly off so many different ways. So, you know, it's a big relief when it actually works.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Dan, does this prove also the Thomas Edison quote, I have not failed, I just found 10,000 ways it won't work?

OLIVAS: Well, so space flight is a very difficult and challenging thing. We know very little about space and living and working in space, we've been joined (INAUDIBLE) since 1950s. But we still have a lot to learn. And especially where Elon Musk is headed right now is -- were basically in an unchartered territory as we started heading towards Mars. Although we've Martian probes before, trying to get a human being to Mars, you know, alive is a challenge. Getting off a planet is certainly the first step.

VAUSE: It's not easy. I guess what I'm getting to here though is that, you know, you have Elon Musk who's sort of this cowboy, you know, he flies a lot of stuff, a lot of stuff doesn't work. And if you're going to get to Mars, it's kind of -- I'm not saying sort of recklessness but a spirit to try and try and try. We -- you know, NASA doesn't quite having the same proportions or have what it used to have, you know, now that it's sort of, you know, into its 60th year.

OLIVAS: Also, I think -- I think there is a lot of risks that's taken when you fly into space. And NASA comes from an institutionalized approach towards safety and --

VAUSE: Which is a good thing.

OLIVAS: You know, it's a good thing. And you got to figure that the space shuttle was the safest space vehicle that was ever built by mankind. And yet, we experience a failure in one every six, 7-1/2 flights. Which basically means that, you know, that's not a very good odd.

VAUSE: But space flight is dangerous. OLIVAS: Space flight is dangerous. And now if you're talking about going to Mars, your opportunities for testing these vehicles and understand their liability, you know, the opportunity is going to be much less. So, a lot of rigors have to go in too to make sure that it's safe before it starts putting bellybuttons on the properties of flying figure the space vehicle built by mankind yet we experienced failure in one in flights. Space pointy rockets.

VAUSE: You know, the key to all of this in some way is the cost for the launch. We have estimate numbers, we don't have actually, you know, specific numbers but this what its believed. The SpaceX and Falcon Heavy, $90 million per launch, United Launch Alliance, another private group, $400 per launch. And to NASA, still, in development, space launch system which is their heavy launched vehicle, much heavier than the Falcon, up to a billion dollars each launch. The reason why the SpaceX is so cheap is because they reuse the rocket. But this -- does this raise now whole bunch of questions to NASA and what priorities should be moving forward?

[02:35:00] OLIVAS: Well, so I think there's an opportunity for both organizations to learn. You know, NASA has a historical experience with space. There's been a lot of lessons that have been learned through a lot of, you know, blood, sweat and tears and literally blood. But by the same token, SpaceX has approached in a very novel and as you said a cowboy sort of way that the Space Agency could benefit from. And so I really see that by the two working together that there's going to be a nice hybrid that will allow us to be able to continue space -- safe exploration of space.

VAUSE: On the technical side, you know, the real achievements of this was, you know, the boosters coming back to earth. Two of the boosters made it back. A third one, the center booster didn't make it, crashed into the sea. Is that concern?

OLIVAS: Well, I'm sure that the SpaceX team is going to study what happened. They've obviously got experience with landing on barges. So they're going to go through the data and try to figure out exactly what happened. You know, to me the excitement wasn't necessarily actually coming home, it was an actually the boosters staying strapped on because that's the first time for that configuration has been flown like that which, you know, pretty phenomenal.

VAUSE: There are some questions though if in fact there is big enough market out there for Falcon Heavy. I'm just saying, it seems to me like this would be a case of create the service and demand will follow.

OLIVAS: So I think that we as human beings are curious. And we certainly understand and appreciate that Mars is a destination that human beings are well-endeavored to conquer, to be able to get there and actually plant the flag and so we've been there and explored it. That's been the forefront since the (INAUDIBLE) holidays. So I do think that, you know, going forward, there should have been that same level of excitement and the same level of enthusiasm. And, you know, I think again with this -- the private ventures coming in and -- coming in very creative and innovative way will help basically the United States, you know, retain the high ground in space.

VAUSE: You know, we're out of time. But I think for everybody who watched this launched, it was like we were watching the future and the future started today with this launch and that's what was so excited about it. Danny, good to you.

OLIVAS: Absolutely. Thank you, John.

VAUSE: Well, the party continues in Philadelphia after that historic Super Bowl win but some players say they won't take the celebration to the Trump White House. Also, The Punisher, President Rodrigo Duterte smashing luxury cars to send a message to criminals.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VAUSE: Well, Rodrigo Duterte, the no-nonsense President of the Philippines dubbed "The Punisher" is alluding out to that nickname using backhoes and bulldozers to destroy 30 luxury cars, crushing Corvettes, pounding Porsches, mauling Mercedes, all to prove a point to smugglers and tax dodgers.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RODRIGO DUTERTE, PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES: This kind of racket has been going on again and again and again over a period of centuries. Well, it has to stop.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

[02:40:12] VAUSE: Officials smashed more than a million dollars' worth of cars to prevent the previous earners and smugglers the tax lodgers from buying them again at auction.

Well (INAUDIBLE) South Korea says Kim Jong-un's sister will be part of North Korea's high-level delegation to the Winter Olympics. Kim Yo- jong will be the first member of the ruling Kim family to visit South Korea to the closer adviser to her brother and a powerful speaker in the North Korean regime.

The Philadelphia Eagles waited decades for their big win over the New England Patriots on Sunday, a game which was being a called one of the most entertaining Super Bowls ever. The U.S President was among those who congratulated the team but players from Eagles Including wide receiver Tory Smith say they won't be attending a White House reception and he explained to CNN's Don Lemon.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TORY SMITH, WIDE RECEIVER, PHILADELPHIA EAGLES: For me, it's not just about politics. You know, if I told you I was invited to a party by an individual that I believe a sexist or a has no respect for women, or I told you that this individual has said offensive things towards many minority groups and I don't feel comfortable by it, this individual also called my peers and my friends, SOBs, you would understand why I wouldn't want to go to that party. So, why is it different when this has a title, the President of the United States. Amen. And it's really that simple to me. I don't think it's something that I personally feel inclined being involved with and it's just my personal opinion.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: This is to play Devil's advocate here. Those people would sat that you should respect the office and go because you respect the office even if you don't respect the person. What do you say?

SMITH: To me, I respect the office but I feel like oftentimes we put athletes, we hold athletes and entertainers to high standards, you know, we're holding the President of the United States. For me, it's just about doing the right thing. It's not about (INAUDIBLE) or anything, this is about simply right and wrong. And there is -- there isn't too many things that I agree with that he's doing just simply as a good man.

LEMON: Yes. Well said. Thank you for that. So listen, your teammates Malcolm Jenkins, Chris Long also said that they won't be going to the White House. Have other teammates told you that they won't be going as well? Is this something you guys discussed in the locker room or when you have your time together, practices and such?

SMITH: Yes. I mean, there are plenty of guys who said they, you know, they do not plan on going but honestly, I don't think it's fair to place that on everyone because like I said, it is an honor. You dream of playing this game, you dream of winning this game. And going to the White House, it will be viewed as an honor and a privilege like we've all seen it on T.V., they all want to be involved with. I personally, I've been there when President Obama was there when I won in 2012 with the Baltimore Ravens. So it was a great experience but regards to how people may feel about President Obama, you can't say President Obama was a bad person, you can say -- you may not agree with his policies, you may not agree with some decisions he made but you cannot say him as a man is a bad person.

And that, to me, was all about. I have two young boys who are going to look back on this time period and wonder what I did to help. You know, I take pride on trying to live the right way and try to make the right decisions and try to help our community, bring people together and help uplift people. And that's how a lot of my peers are as well especially with the player coalition that we formed. So, I mean, we're just about doing the right thing, giving back and I want to sure that when my boys read up about their dad that they know that their dad did everything he could to be the best man that he can be.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VAUSE: Thank you f watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. I'm John Vause. Stay tuned now, "WORLD SPORT" is up next. You're watching CNN.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[02:45:48] KATE RILEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL SPORTS ANCHOR: Welcome along to WORLD SPORT, I'm Kate Riley at CNN Center. We are starting in the countdown to the Winter Olympics. Evening ceremony will be on Friday, with the game getting underway on Saturday. But note, that the curling and ski jumping actually starts on Thursday. We will be bringing you plenty of drama along the way, but also some stories about dreams coming true for so many of the athletes. CNN has multiple crews on the ground following every twist and turn, of course, we will be bringing you that life from Pyeongchang.

Well, meanwhile, a story that won't go away, of course, is the topic of doping. And the International Olympic Committee is trying to keep the drug cheats, and those suspected of doping away from the game. And they're not being held by the court of arbitration for sport or CAS, so just taking us off to line. 169 athletes were cleared to compete, and another 32 are trying to get their bans overturned.

Meanwhile, Russian athletes are arriving in Korea and we are seeing a sense of what the team is going to look like. Remember, Russia is banned, so these are known as Olympic athletes from Russia. Many display of a national pride, flags, colors, and logos, of course, are forbidden. That's why you'll seeing athletes conceal their identity on kit bags, of course, it really is quite a strange site. And this athlete is very emotional, they're proud Russians no matter what anyone says.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

EGOR KOROTKOV, FREESTYLE SKIING ATHLETE, RUSSIA (through translator): Everybody knows where we come from but rivals and fans off and on of sports no matter what anybody says that we should not go, everybody knows what country we are from and to what flag we are, what anthem. And if we win, what country we take the medals to.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

RILEY: One thing that can be confirmed is that, of course, it's really cold in Pyeongchang. And this ice is actually colder than some of the recent game. It was frosty one in Lillehammer in 1994. But after that, it was much warmer in Nagano, Salt Lake City, Turin, Vancouver, and Sochi. But this cold weather mean the Winter Olympics will be better. Essentially, will there be more snow? CNN Meteorologist Tom Sater can help us with that one.

TOM SATER, CNN INTERNATIONAL METEOROLOGIST: You know, Kate, you mentioned Sochi, you mentioned Torino and Vancouver those were the three warmest Winter Games on records. So, this is going to seem cold, but also, it's been colder than usual.

However, colder does not mean more snow. In fact, it doesn't hold much moisture in the atmosphere when the atmosphere is cold. Look at this, you just see this (INAUDIBLE), you can see the grass. I mean, this could be an issue. Yes, there is some snow but it's very fine its light snow. The one issue maybe when you have is as the look at the (INAUDIBLE) on a training around here, it could be the sun.

Now, we may not see temperatures of above freezing at this elevation, so, that doesn't necessarily mean we don't have melting. The sunlight itself, the skiers passing over the snow could do enough harm with the refreezing at night. And some of this skiers may have trouble, you know, finding their edge.

But if you look at climatology for this area, this is the driest month that we're going to see. I mean, they get all the prescription, this are millimeters in the summer months. So, the snow will be light, but it's going to be cold now. Well, you could see the infrared imagery, then the white that you see showing up in North and the South Korea, that's an extremely cold air.

Temperatures have been colder than usual, this winter doesn't mean now that we won't have a little moisture. I mean, we're surrounded by water but because it's so cold, it just so hard to generate in this snowfall.

Now, there is a difference between the cluster of venues on the coast and the mountain clusters. So, for the fan showing up, family members, anywhere around the world. Even for athletes, you're going to notice average high in coastal areas about seven degrees, when you're just been at the freezing mark in the mountain clusters, low temperatures minus 10.

Switzerland, 1928, 1948, coldest ever. Average low is minus 16.4. You mentioned, Kate, Lillehammer, the average high temperature was 2.6, but Lillehammer was the farthest north in latitude we'd never had on Olympic Games. But this are -- you know, are your forecasts, and you know, it seems temperatures, low temperatures all minus 6, minus 7, minus 8 degrees.

Now the winds, this could play a factor when it comes to ski jump. Take a look at this, current wind chill, minus 29 degrees at the top. When they're at the chute, and those ski jumper started to get a little bit of wind in their face and build up some speed, that minus 29 could be much colder than that. But even that -- for the spectators are minus 20.

As a big drop in a wind chill value, but the wind course are going to be blowing, there's no doubt about it. For those of you planning on your arrival, Friday for opening ceremony, as we're looking at the cloudy skies, no snow in the forecast, I doubt we'll see much. We may see a few passing light showers but nothing heavy. Interesting to note though, when you talked about this Kate, I still think that's will be on the top four, cold as Winter Olympics. Of course, that has yet to be seen, but it would be nice to have some of the countrysides with a little bit a wide as well.

[02:50:38] RILEY: Yes, good advice there, Tom, thank you so much. Wrap up warm if you're heading out there. Coming up on the show, just how long will Antonio Conte's lose as Chelsea boss? Is a winning of trophy for the Blues a blessing or a curse?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

RILEY: We are back with news from the English Premier League, where the pressure is mounting on the Chelsea boss Antonio Conte. And if you look at the managers that came before him, there are some similarities between the past and the current situation as Stamford Bridge. Elite like Carlo Ancelotti, Roberto Di Matteo, and Jose Mourinho were all sank the season after leading the Blues to major trophies. So, could Conte be next? And that really would be something wouldn't -- he had a massive impact when he arrived at Stamford Bridge in the summer of 2016. He brought home an easy title for Chelsea. But recently, things aren't looking so rosy.

In the last two weeks, the Blues have lost to Bournemouth and Watford. And they were also not count to the league cup by Arsenal. Speculation is raised that Conte could be a goner. If you heard his latest press conference, it sounds like his almost expecting it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANTONIO CONTE, MANAGER, CHELSEA, PREMIER LEAGUE CLUB: I hope that the tonight for once, do you understand me? I'm not worried, I'm not worried about my job. I work every day and they give 120 percent, OK? If this is enough, it's OK. Otherwise, the club can take a different decision, but I'm not worried.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

RILEY: If you are a Premier League manager while you are paid handsomely on you. But it does comment the cause. One minute, you're flavor of the month, the next to completely different story. Conte, was a fan favorite at the Bridge last season. The stats guys are often saying that he actually was the joint best win rate of the Premier League manager. His level with Pep Guardiola on 70.3 percent.

And on Tuesday, reports out of Stamford Bridge suggest that Conte will not be fired, they are still a team who are in the top four with an interest in the champion's league in the F.A. Cup, so, to play for. But in the next few weeks, they have a run of fixtures which could change everything. Barcelona in Europe, Manchester United and Manchester City in the league as well.

If those games don't go well, things could look very different by the middle of March. OK, then, staying with football coaches and the Dutch team have a new man in charge. The Netherland in qualify for Russia, but they're hoping that Ronald Koeman can lead them to Qatar 2022.

The former Everton and Southampton manager was given the job on Tuesday. He's got a four-year contract leading the Dutch national team first on this list qualifying for the 2020 European championships. Koeman is one of the few men who have actually tasted success with the Netherlands. He played 78 times for them, including the triumphant European championship fight of 1988. Well, on the pitch, some really lots sided scores around Europe on Tuesday night.

And Cup play Munich won 6-0, Swansea won 8-1, and Marseille won 9-0. So, it's a little disappointing that star-studded GSP, and he manage that Paul one win in the Tour de France. And how Di Maria scored a hat-trick in the victory over Sochaux. But we'll show you this match due to what happen next. PSG keeper Kevin Trapp is sent off in injury time after a tackle, and the Brazilian have no other keeper in the squad. So, the famous right-back Dani Alves, don the gloves, thankfully (INAUDIBLE) take one chance on go. That was blocked by a wall of defenders. Interesting scenes on the night over France.

Of course, we're excited about the upcoming Winter Games in Pyeongchang, and no matter the weather, it won't be an Olympic battle claim, and of course, that getting closer. The torch relay travel through Gangwon's to Donghae City on the east coast. On Tuesday, the games will begin when the flame light the Olympic cauldron on Friday.

And that brings this edition of CNN WORLD SPORT. To a close, thank you so much for watching. From the team and me, I'm Kate Riley. Stay with CNN.