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Stormy Daniels Attorney Files New Motion to Depose Trump & Cohen; Trudeau Attends Vigil For Humboldt Hockey Team; Cosby Juror Accused Of Biased Comment May Delay Start Of Trial. 7:30-8a ET
Aired April 9, 2018 - 07:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[07:32:16] ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Stormy Daniels's lawyer is again asking for a judge's permission to depose President Trump and his personal Attorney Michael Cohen under oath about that $130,000 hush payment, made the porn star days before the 2016 election.
That Attorney Michael Avenatti joins us now. Michael, great to have you here.
MICHAEL AVENATTI, STORMY DANIELS' ATTORNEY: Good morning.
CAMEROTA: So, a couple weeks ago you asked a judge to be able to depose the President and Michael Cohen. And the judge said that was premature, didn't give you permission. So now what changed?
AVENATTI: We filed the motion and the court found it, we had filed it too early, basically denied it without prejudice, meaning we had the ability to refile it. We refiled it last night. It's going to be heard in the first week of May.
CAMEROTA: But what change in those two weeks. And then why now, is it not too early?
AVENATTI: Well, it's not early now because the other side has filed what's called the motion to compel arbitration which the court had found, had to filed first.
CAMEROTA: I see. You were quite excited on Thursday I believe or Friday, whenever it was last week when the President on Air Force One had this moment. Let me recap it for everyone.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, did you know about the $130,000 payment to Stormy Daniels?
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No. No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Then why -- why did Michael Cohen make this, if there was no truth to the allegation?
TRUMP: You'll have to ask Michael Cohen. Michael is my attorney and you'll have to ask Michael Cohen. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you know where he got the money to make that payment.
TRUMP: I don't know.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAMEROTA: You called that Christmas and Hanukkah, wraps together, a gift to you. He's saying that he hasn't know anything about it. Why is that such a gift?
AVENATTI: Well, this is what happen Alisyn when you have a client that's not disciplined. And there are certain contexts in which you cannot be disciplined. You don't want to be undisciplined in litigation. And this is what happens. The problem with what the President said on Air Force One is, that he shot himself in the foot and he also threw Michael Cohen under the bus at the same time, not to mix the metaphors.
And here's why, because he can't enforce an agreement that you didn't know anything about and we're not party too, so we have effectively approved this case for our case on Air Force One. And secondly --
CAMEROTA: Wait a minute. He always said that he didn't know about the agreement. So did Michael Cohen. And they did just said again.
AVENATTI: Well, no. He's never said that before. That's the first time --
CAMEROTA: The White House has said that he didn't know anything.
AVENATTI: Well, not exactly. I mean, there's been a lot what I'll describe is White House speak of this issue. But now we have the President on video stating that he didn't know anything about the agreement. And the other reason why we were exited about this that we're happy about it is because it furthers our efforts to depose the President and Michael Cohen about what the president knew, when he knew it and when he did this $130,000 payment.
CAMEROTA: Yes, but again, he has always said or the White House says or Michael Cohen, he didn't know anything. So does that change anything that he once again reiterated he didn't know anything?
AVENATTI: Again. We have an admission from the President, a very damaging admission. It will be problematic for him and Michael Cohen.
[07:35:02] CAMEROTA: OK, you tweeted out this weekend. Expect a major announcement in the coming days regarding our efforts to identify the thug who threaten Ms. Clifford, Stormy Daniels in Las Vegas in 2011 to leave Trump alone while making reference to her little girl. You can run but you can't hide. #thugsearch seriousconsequences basta.
So care in telling us what your major announcement is, in terms of searching for this person. AVENATTI: So my client sat down with Lois Gibson, She's the foremost forensic artist in the world. She has the Guinness. She has a world record for the number of IDs a composite sketches been produced. We're going to be reducing or we're going to be releasing that tomorrow along with a significant reward asking that the public come forward. We are very close to identifying this individual.
CAMEROTA: You are?
AVENATTI: We are.
CAMEROTA: You have a composite sketch and you think you know who this person is?
AVENATTI: We are very close. We need some assistance from the public. We're going to offer a significant reward to get us over the goal line. And I'm confident that we're going to get there.
CAMEROTA: And can you tell us if people will recognize this individual since you have implied before that you think that Michael Cohen was behind it?
AVENATTI: Well, we certainly hope that people are going to recognize the individual and are going to come forward with information.
CAMEROTA: Have you shared it with the police?
AVENATTI: I'm not going to answer that.
CAMEROTA: Can you show us the composite picture right now?
AVENATTI: Not right now.
CAMEROTA: So you're doing this tomorrow?
CAMEROTA: And do you still now that you have the composite. Do you still believe that it was sent by someone connected to Donald Trump?
AVENATTI: Here's what I'll say. It could only have come from one of three places. My client, meaning she threatened herself, which make no sense. In Touch Magazine which makes no sense. Because why would they threaten my client relating to the publication of an interview in their own magazine. Or someone associated with Trump or the Trump organization. We think it's pretty clear where it has come from.
CAMEROTA: They have said that they don't believe that this actually happened.
AVENATTI: Well, they said a lot of things.
CAMEROTA: I mean, but weren't there. Was there security camera video is there anything else other than Stormy Daniels's word?
AVENATTI: Well, I think there is significant evidence that this actually happened. We're going to release them in the coming weeks. And I'm also confident that when we release this sketch tomorrow, and went we offer this sizeable reward, someone is going to come forward and it's going to tighten the noose, if you will, on this issue.
CAMEROTA: How much is the reward?
AVENATTI: I'm not going to tell you?
CAMEROTA: But are police working with you on this?
AVENATTI: Again, I'm not going to answer that right now.
CAMEROTA: Are you going to say it tomorrow?
CAMEROTA: So I'm going to have you have back on TV tomorrow?
AVENATTI: No, not necessarily. I mean, you know, you folks promo pieces all the time, right?
CAMEROTA: So this is a tease. We're familiar with the tease.
CAMEROTA: And you have mastered this.
AVENATTI: It's not, it's really not about tease. It's about being strategic in what we're doing. We filed our motion yesterday to depose the President and Mr. Cohen. Today, we're going to oppose the motion to compel arbitration. There's going to be significant information that's going to come out in connection with that. Tomorrow we're going to release the composite sketch and the reward.
CAMEROTA: OK. Michael Avenatti, we appreciate you telling us all of that. We will stay tuned.
AVENATTI: Thank you. Good to see you.
CAMEROTA: Next, Chris?
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: All right. There was a tragedy in Canada. The community though is coming together to honor members of this junior hockey team who were killed in horrifying crash. It's a really testament to how these people are being valued, how this investigation have been treated and it's really worth watching their memorial. Next.
[07:42:02] CUOMO: Three thousand mourners packed in Saskatchewan last night to honor the members of a junior hockey team who died in this horrible bus crash. Fifteen people were killed, 14 others were injured in the accident.
You probably have been seeing so much of this online. And you should look it up. The Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attended the vigil after visiting victims and family members at a hospital. The team's bus collided with this tractor trailer. I mean, it was really, really a grisly scene. Investigators say it is too early to know exactly who did what and why is wrong. But the community has come together in beautiful fashion.
CAMEROTA: Oh my gosh. Now, listen to this similar story, Chris. Dozens of students and chaperones are injured. At least six seriously after the roof of a charter bus slammed into an overpass in New York. The bus was carrying 38 students from various Long Island high school and five chaperones. They've just return from a European trip, police say the driver was being evaluated but did not seem to know familiar with the road ways commercial vehicle height restrictions.
CUOMO: All right. We're following breaking news. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is going to be on Capitol Hill Monday to meet with lawmakers. The source familiar with the matter says, Zuckerberg is going to meet with lawmakers including members of committees that are holding hearings this week on the Cambridge analytical scandal. He's going to testify Tuesday and Wednesday.
Meantime, an eye on your Facebook news feed, please. Why? Well, the company says it's going to send you a detailed message if you're one of the 87 million users who had their data shared with Cambridge Analytica. 2.2 billion Users are going to getting a notice titled protecting your information.
CAMEROTA: So Fox host Sean Hannity now vowing a "Comprehensive response after Late Night Host Jimmy Kimmel apologized to for their Feud. Kimmel tweeting in part, while I admit I did have fun with our back and forth, after some thought I realize that the level of vitriol from all sides mine and me included gets does nothing good for anyone. And it is in fact harmful to our country.
The TV and Twitter stat started last well when Kimmel mocked First Lady Melania's accent during a bit on his late night show. The story got more personal and more vulgar before Kimmel's apology.
CUOMO: In fact, even his apology is being taken as an attack. It wasn't a real apology. I mean, there is just so much energy in loving the divide. And pointing to the other side, saying who is more wrong. It is much easier for politicians and the media, by the way. Who wants to get stuck up in policy and just to find a voter what they're doing.
CAMEROTA: Of course.
CUOMO: When they can just say, well they're the problem. He's the problem.
CAMEROTA: Of course. And I'm not sure that social media such as Twitter has helped. But regardless of what you think his motivation for the apology is what he said there that it hasn't helped the world, it hasn't help, that's true.
CUOMO: True. CAMEROTA: And so, good for him for saying he's going to backing off his side.
CUOMO: On how he said it, was there a little bit of snark in there? Yes. But is there a lot of opportunism in this as well? Yes. And you have to know that if not getting us anywhere. Just look around you.
[07:45:07] CAMEROTA: It's time for CNNMoney now. As President Trump threatens China with new tariffs, trade war fears are sinking stocks. Well the selling continues today? CNN Correspondent Alison Kosik is live and our money center with more. What are you seeing Alison?
ALISON KOSIK, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning Alisyn. So I have seen future higher after White House officials trying to downplay fears of trade war. Last week President Trump threatened to slap additional tariffs on China, $100 billion worth. That followed earlier tariffs of $50 billion with China retaliating against with its own tariffs on U.S. exports.
So that tit for tat worries investors. A trade war would be devastating for U.S. consumers and for companies. So Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin yesterday said he does not expect a trade war. While economic advisor Larry Kudlow emphasis that no tariffs have been implemented yet calling Trump's tariff threats a negotiating tactic.
So, the big question is, will that all calm Wall Street? Trade war fears have shaped 572 points off the Dow on Friday. It's also sparking a lot of volatility with the S&P 500 swinging more than one percent, four of the last five trading days. All of which hurts Trump reputation as the stock market President.
Last year the money made investing since Trump took office was one of the best of any president. But now, it doesn't even rank in the top five. If you invested in the Dow on inauguration day, your return since then is about 20 percent. That's much less than former Presidents Obama, Clinton, and H.W. Bush. Chris?
CUOMO: That's why you've heard nothing from the President on the downs.
CUOMO: But when it goes up, he's right.
KOSIK: Yes, crickets.
CUOMO: All right, Alison we'll watch him today. Thank you very much.
Opening statements set to begin today in Bill Cosby's retrial. The controversy over a juror may cause a delay in the case. What's coming up next.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [07:51:18] CUOMO: Opening states are expected to begin today in Bill Cosby's sexual assault retrial. I say expected because there could be a delay. There is an issue with one of the jurors and really there are other issues, as well. So let's get to CNN's Jean Casarez live in Norristown, Pennsylvania.
With more it's great to have you on the story as always, what do we see?
JEAN CASAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning Chris. Well, it has to do with who is now juror number 11, before he was juror number 11, the defenses alleging that he said to a group of jurors that are just above to undergo individual questioning.
He said, no, Bill Cosby he's guilty. So the defense has filed a motion and now let me start from the beginning, there was a female juror that went for individual questioning. She was actually struck by the prosecution. There was a back on (ph) motion aas they called it alleging that it was based upon her race. She is black.
They went into a conference room to discuss it. The defense agreed to continue. It was that female juror who remains struck that went to the Tom Mesereau office, the Defense Attorney as well as another defense attorney's office in Nevada.
And said I heard who this juror says this in front of all of us. And so now this morning we believe the judge will question the jurors as they always do to see what was said, what wasn't said, what other jurors may have heard. But it is today opening statements and we do believe that both sides are going to have many facts that are similar that Andrea Constand and Bill Cosby, they knew each other.
She was the administrator at Temple University. He was a big supporter of the basketball team. He was her mentor. She went to his house in January of 2004, but that where the facts will diverge because she will say that at that particular time when she wanted to be mentored, he drugged and sexually assaulted her. Cosby will say true his deposition, through his police statement that it was consensual, there was sexual activity but it was consensual.
Andrea Constand sister tells me that her sister is here in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. She is ready to testify against Bill Cosby. She is confident. She is calm because she has the truth on her side. And Chris, of course, it will be an immensely strong cross examination to try to discredit Andrea Constand, the accuser in this case.
CUOMO: All right. So with those two juror issues, the expectation that they start today may be ambitious. Jean, thank you very much.
Joining us is Paul Callan, CNN Legal Analyst. Great to have you always council. We need you on this one. So, that's simply Kentucky. I remember, that was like 1986. You had a preemptive challenge now the prosecution but if on the basis of race, this what they case was about. It can then be challenged because that's for bad reason. So you have that issue, then you have these other juror who said he's guilty. That's a problem. So probably won't start today but when it does begin where do you see this? What are the big moments?
PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: I think it's a brand new canvas in this case because so many things have happened since the last hung jury. You have a new attorney Tom Mesereau who by the way is really a very professional, very, very good criminal attorney especially with celebrities. He kind of humanizes celebrities and teaches humility and teaches them how to project to a jury and he's been very, very successful through the years. Smart guy Mesereau.
We also have of course the Me Too movement. There's more of a consciousness of women being abused in these situations but balancing against that we have a President of the United States who was accused by a number of women as having engaged in improper sexual contact with them and he will not become president of the United State.
So, is this jury going to say we should send 80-year-old Cosby to prison for something that happen so many years ago when we've elected Trump president of the United States?
[00:55:08] So we have all of this atmosphere floating around with respect to this case. There's another big thing, the judge had said that the complaints of five other women against Cosby maybe admitted in this trial. That was not done at the prior trial.
CUOMO: That's the biggest difference in terms of the case in chief of the prosecutor.
CALLAN: You know when I first heard about that I thought, that's devastating for Cosby if the jury hears that five other women claimed a similar situation. But, you know, something then I thought back to that cover of New York magazine there were 35 women on that cover.
CUOMO: Right, he already had a ton.
CALLAN: And that expanded the number to over 50. Now the jury is only going to hear five. That's actually a reduction in the number of women making claims against him.
CUOMO: That's their point. And he only needs one.
CUOMO: He needs one juror.
CALLAN: He needs one juror and people have to remember, it's only one claim that's really being evaluated, that's the claim of Andrea Constand.
CUOMO: All right, now other big situation in the news, the Stormy Daniels thing. All right. So, they -- Avenatti and Stormy Daniels, they file to depose. That's what -- this is why we care because it's all personal stuff and intrigue and political questions until the president of the United States is put under oath in a deposition just like with Clinton.
That's why I care at least. Avenatti filed it too early, Cohen then files for arbitration and now opens the door to this type of motion. Here's my question. Avenatti work in TV very well. He's got them back on their heels. He's keeping this relevant.
Why don't they just not contest the motion about the NDA? Why doesn't Cohen and his council say, fine, the NDA is resented, say whatever you want. You already have anyway. We don't need your money. I'm not going to get the penalties, then there is no discovery. Then is no ongoing case or controversy and all of these goes away.
CALLAN: Well, I think you're absolutely right about that. And that's really a great question because the whole--
CUOMO: Same to me on vacation.
CUOMO: When I was in the thick of it here the week before that, I was just going along if, you know, step by step whatever.
CALLAN: Well, it's perfect analysis because Trump allegedly pays her $130,000 to keep quiet because this would be so embarrassing maybe to his family but certainty to his election.
CALLAN: It's the cats out of the bag now, all right. So he says forget the agreement I'm walking away from it. I'm not going to come after you. I release you. The case is moot.
CUOMO: The case is moot. And now, Trump coming out. Avenatti does have a point. The White House saying we don't think any of this happening. The President doesn't think, it's different than those words coming out of the mouth of the person who would be the defendant in this case trump himself, so him saying that gives you a little something but not if they don't contest the situation. Then only Cohen has exposure for the deformation.
CALLAN: that's correct. But I'm also not convinced that the court is going to give Avenatti a Trump deposition so easily. In order to get a deposition of the President you would have to show that his testimony was critical to determining whether the case goes into arbitration or not.
And I'm sure that the Trump attorneys will argue that that could be litigated after the arbitration is completed. The parties may decide to settle their case in arbitration. That's why we have arbitration to get these cases out of the court system and resolved.
And remember what the judge said at the end of his opinion when Avenatti first went into Federal court to try to get this deposition. He said remember something. I have a lot more important cases on my calendar than this case. And what the judge meant was he's got cases involving people who have lost their lives, their businesses, their reputations. This is a case involving a woman who says she was paid $130,000 to keep quiet and now might get penalized for talking about what happened. That's, it kind of, if it didn't involve the President of the united states this case wouldn't be getting any attention any place.
CUOMO: That's right. And that deposition is the key for us in terms of the bigger. Everything else, again, our personal issues until you get to that.
Paul Callan, thank you so much. You made us better and smarter.
CALLAN: Thank you today.
CALLAN: All right. We're following a lot of news on this Monday morning. What do you say? Let's get after it.
CAMEROTA: Syria blaming Israel for carrying out a missile strike against one of their air bases last night.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We've seen the photos of that attack. I wouldn't take anything off the table.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He needed to set the agenda making it very clear that if we draw a red line in the sand that we're going to honor that red line.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was pleased President mentioned Mr. Putin. That was a significant change.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's defining moment in his presidency. They see our determination to stay in Syria waning.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Pruitt, ethics matter, impropriety matters. Stop acting like a chucklehead, stop the unforced errors.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Scott has done a fantastic job on policy.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He has the confidence of the president and is getting the job done.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's just not as influential with Trump as people thought he might be.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is "NEW DAY" with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.
[08:00:00] CUOMO: Good morning. Welcome to your NEW DAY. It is Monday April 9, 8:00 in eastern. We begin with breaking news. Russia's defense ministry claims Israel carried out air strikes in a Syrian airbase after a suspected chemical weapons attack in the suburbs of Damascus.