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Metal Fatigue on Engine; Executives to Testify in Merger Case; Trump Tweets About Comey Firing; Pompeo Confirmation; Remembering Barbara Bush. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired April 18, 2018 - 08:30   ET


[08:30:00] MILES O'BRIEN, CNN AVIATION ANALYST: And an open question as to whether there are other metal fatigue cracks in fan blades flying around as we speak.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Mary, it sounds like you're both sounding the alarm this morning about this.

MARY SCHIAVO, CNN AVIATION ANALYST: Well, absolutely. And Miles is right. And it doesn't have to be a grounding of the fleet because the FAA will never do that. But this service bulletin was very specific. They knew exactly which fan blades you should inspect. You have to take them out and put them on ultrasonic testing. But this needs to be a surgical grounding. Get these engines -- because these two planes, the one in 2016 and the one yesterday, are very close in time in tail numbers. They might have been very close in the assembly of this engine and in timing. And this manufacturer's CFM had a similar incident, not on this engine, where they were able to isolate specific engines that did not get the proper quality control testing when they were manufactured. Now, not these. And so you could have a very strategic grounding of certain engines on certain planes to get this testing done immediately because, unfortunately, that's why I called the FAA the tombstone agency, they don't react with their (INAUDIBLE) directives until someone dies.

CAMEROTA: All right. Well, let's pray they're listening this morning.

Mary Schiavo, Miles O'Brien, thank you very much.


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: All right, another story for you this morning. Hundreds of people in Hawaii airlifted to safety to escape massive flooding from record rainfall on the island of Kauai. We have the latest details, next.


[08:35:22] CAMEROTA: Time now for the "Five Things to Know for Your New Day."

President Trump confirming that CIA Director Mike Pompeo secretly met with North Korea's Kim Jong-un, laying the groundwork for a Trump/Kim summit. The news coming as Pompeo's nomination for secretary of state faces serious headwinds in the Senate.

CUOMO: Former First Lady Barbara Bush has passed, the matriarch of one of America's biggest political dynasties. Mrs. Bush is being remembered for her fierce devotion to family and for elevating causes putting purpose before politics.

CAMEROTA: U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley striking back at the White House saying she -- the White House has said she was confused about plans to hit Russia with new sanctions. Haley put out a statement saying, with all due respect, I don't get confused. Economic Adviser Larry Kudlow then apologizing for making that remark.

CUOMO: The IRS extending the tax filing deadline until midnight tonight. Why? Its website crashed on Tuesday. One person who won't be filing, President Trump. The president, who, remember, will not release any of his tax returns, he has requested an extension.

CAMEROTA: Search and rescue teams are scouring the Hawaiian island of Kauai following the record rainfall over the weekend which triggered flooding and mudslides. More than 300 people have been airlifted to safety.

CUOMO: Want more on the "Five Things to Know," you can good to and you will get the latest.

CAMEROTA: So, the government rests its case in the suit to block the AT&T and Time Warner deal. We have all the details for you, next.


[08:40:52] CUOMO: Top executives at AT&T and Time Warner set to take the stand today as they push for regulatory approval of their blockbuster merger. The government resting its case to block the deal. Time Warner is, of course, the owner of CNN.

We have Hadas Gold live in Washington with more.

What do we expect?

HADAS GOLD, CNN POLITICS, MEDIA AND BUSINESS REPORTER: So today is one of the biggest days of this trial. We're expecting to hear from Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewles, who will take the stand. After him will be John Stankey, an AT&T executive, and tomorrow we'll probably hear from AT&T's CEO Randall Stephenson.

Like I said, the most high profile days of this trial. The courtroom is going to be completely packed. Yesterday, as I was leaving the courthouse, I saw line sitters already lined up camping out, outside of the courthouse waiting for these next two days.

And what we're going to hear from these CEOs is a defense really of this merger. They say that AT&T needs Time Warner in order to better compete against these big companies like FaceBook, Netflix and Google, who they say are already these sort of vertically integrated companies. They already own the platforms and they also own the content that you are watching. These movies you're watching on Netflix or on Amazon or on anything like that. AT&T says that they need Time Warner's content to better compete with these companies. That they're losing video subscribers.

The Justice Department is going to try to push back on this and try to ask the CEOs questions about how they might leverage this bigger company to push down their competitors. But it's going to be a big day these next few days. Really pivotal moments in this trial.

CAMEROTA: All right, Hadas, thank you very much. We will check back in with you, of course.

So, President Trump tweeting that James Comey was not fired because of the Russia investigation. Of course, that's not what he said a year ago. So we will dissect that in "The Bottom Line."

CUOMO: All right.

But, first, as opioid related deaths continue to skyrocket, we have the story of one mother taking it upon herself to get pills off the street and her motivation is really just horrifying. She lost two sons from opioids in the same night.

Becky Savage has her story in this "Turning Points."


BECKY SAVAGE, LOST TWO SONS TO OPIOID OVERDOSE: Justin, Jack, Nick and then our youngest, Matthew.

Nick and Jack were very adventurous, fun-loving.

The summer of 2015 was the summer that Jack had just graduated. And there's a lot of graduation parties.

The next morning was June 14th. I was in Jack's room. He was unresponsive. And I called 911. I remember hollering for Nick. But he never came. Both of our boys were pronounced dead that morning.

They took hydrocodone, which is a form of an opioid. It was ruled an accidental overdose related to acute alcohol and hydrocodone ingestion.

Maybe by sharing Nick and Jack's story we can prevent this from happening to somebody else.

We just formed the 525 Foundation in hopes of maybe influencing some new laws.

Thank you, senators, for inviting me to speak with you today.

And to help spread awareness to the dangers of prescription drugs.

We've had three pill pick-ups so far in our community.

Thank you.

We've picked up probably a little bit over 1,500 pounds of pills.

We'll just going to keep doing it.

By me telling their story, they're still able to make a difference in the lives of others.




[08:48:32] CUOMO: President Trump up and tweeting and, once again, causing controversy also about fired FBI Director James Comey. He's also tweeted this morning about Stormy Daniels.

Now, the Comey tweet the president says, slippery James Comey, the worst FBI director in history, was not fired because of the phony Russia investigation where, by the way, there was no collusion except by the Dems.

CAMEROTA: OK. But that's not what he said in an interview with NBC News last May. Listen to this.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: But regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey, knowing there was no good time to do it. And, in fact, when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said, you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story. It's an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won.


CAMEROTA: All right, let get "The Bottom Line" on this and more with CNN chief political correspondent Dana Bash.

Dana, great to see you.


CAMEROTA: So I guess the Comey media blitz is getting under his skin.

BASH: You think?

CAMEROTA: A little bit.

BASH: Yes.

CAMEROTA: I mean, you know, he has a lot going on, obviously, as the president. But -- in addition to the Michael Cohen search, et cetera.

But that's different. What he just -- what he's trying to say that it was -- had nothing to do with Russia, the Comey firing, that is not what he told Lester Holt. BASH: Exactly. He has his own words to contradict what he tweeted

today. It's not the first time that has happened. It won't be the last. It's up to us to call it out as fact check not true.

[08:50:07] But you also have to remember why the president does what he does on Twitter, because that segment of the population who listens to him, reads his Twitter feed and believes everything he says, at least most of what he says, he needs to keep them in the fold. And that's the bottom line on why he does that. And, you know, for the rest of us, we call it out. But for them, they're going to listen to him.

CUOMO: Well, and, look, the problem for him is the challenge is not just to maintain his base, it's to grow, right? The challenge has always been the same.

BASH: Always.

CUOMO: He's got to -- he's got to grow and where are his opportunities to do that? We will see.

This North Korea situation might be an opportunity to grow --

BASH: Sure.

CUOMO: If he can get it done. It also may be a chance to grow his cabinet by getting his nominee, Mike Pompeo, though. The timing seems, you know, obvious here, you know, send Pompeo over there. His confirmation getting a little hung up in committee.

Do we think he gets jammed up in committee? Do we think even, if so, McConnell put the vote on and it winds up being red state Democrats that deliver him into foggy bottom?

BASH: I think that is the most likely scenario for any confirmation of Mike Pompeo. It's hard to see him getting out of committee. It's possible, but hard to see it. Like you said, even if he is not voted yay out of the Foreign Relations Committee. The majority leader has the ability to bring the vote straight to the floor.

And, at that point, just knowing the electoral math and the electoral map with so many of these red state Democrats, Chris, that you mentioned, some of them, like Joe Manchin, for example, Donald Trump won by double digits, like almost 30 points. It is so hard for someone like that to go home to those voters who also have voted for Joe Manchin in the past and say, you know what, I didn't think that the president should have his own secretary of state. This is -- this is a hard to imagine happening. And there are four or five red state Democrats who are in that position, at least few of them all you need is them to go over and he can be confirmed.

CAMEROTA: OK, let's talk about the passing of former First Lady Barbara Bush. George W. Bush has just sat down for his first live remarks on -- since losing his mom. And he -- you know, as always, with some humor and a little bit of irreverence, remembers her wit. So let's listen to a little portion of this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARIA BARTIROMO, FOX BUSINESS ANCHOR: Were you able to say good-bye?

GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: Oh, yes. Yes. In person and then on the phone. Laura and I went over to see her a week ago Saturday. And we had a wonderful visit. She was strong, lucid.


G. BUSH: Funny. She and I were needling each other. And the doctor came in and she turned to the doctor and said, do you want to know why George W. is the way he is? And the doctor looked somewhat surprised. And she said, because I drank and smoked when I was pregnant with him.


CAMEROTA: Vintage, right? I mean vintage.

BASH: Vintage.

CAMEROTA: And, you know, she was 92 years old. She had such a full life. And we're hearing so many of these anecdotes. What are your thoughts?

BASH: Yes. I mean, and another thing that he talked about, as we've heard from, you know, her children, her grandchildren, her dear friends, is that as sweet as she was and as much of a class act she was and a lady as she was, when you did something she didn't like, particularly if you were one of her children, you knew about it. And so her directness is -- was really amazing.

I have to say, and I was just talking to some people here about this as well, not only is, I think, the nation mourning this woman because she was a matriarch and a true American and showed us what leadership is all about, but also because it feels like we're mourning civility in a lot of ways, which we just do not have right now. And she embodied that. As much as she had a sharp tongue, she sort of stood back and tried to do things for the greater good. And I think that that is sort of the underlying feeling of sadness that people are feeling, not just about her, but of an era and of an atmosphere.

CUOMO: And that's why it's so good to remember what she was.

BASH: Yes.

CUOMO: And just on -- you know, on a woman's level, you know, she's from a different time.

BASH: No question.

CUOMO: You know, she's my mother's generation. But women like her represent what we want for all of our kids going into today. So it's important to remember the traits that made her so great. She's much more than just someone who married and then mothered presidents. You know, they were great because of her, not vice versa. BASH: No question.

CAMEROTA: Dana, thank you very much.

BASH: Thanks. Good to see you.

CAMEROTA: You too.

So tomorrow, Jake Tapper will ask James Comey directly the question that others have not asked yet. That will be on "The Lead" at 4:00 p.m. Eastern.

[08:55:01] CUOMO: All right, a little hump day "Good Stuff" for you. What do you say?

CAMEROTA: That's good.

CUOMO: Whether you like it or not, it's coming, next.

CAMEROTA: Right. Yes.


CUOMO: Time for "The Good Stuff."

This is a really rare and special one. Three grandmas in Boston stepped in and stepped up to help their waiter tie the knot. Listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mateo, a very handsome gentleman, came and waited on us and served us. And I got to chatting with him and asked him if he had a girlfriend. And he said, oh, yes, Maria, she works here.


CUOMO: How signature Boston grandma is that, by the way? Anyway, Mateo told them he wanted to propose, but here was the thing, he couldn't afford a ring. What does Sharon do? She pulls off her engagement ring right off her finger.

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I just -- I just did it, you know. He loved her.


CUOMO: So Mateo proposes to Maria right on the spot. She said yes and invited the sisters to the wedding.

CAMEROTA: That is so fantastic. That's something that my grandmother would have done for me, but not a waiter. They're taking it to -- these grandmas are taking it to a new level. CUOMO: My grandmother and my mother would have never done it. When I

was getting married, I asked my mother for the engagement ring, and she looked like I was asking her for like her right eye.

[09:00:07] CAMEROTA: Right. No, didn't happen (ph).

CUOMO: No, she wouldn't separate it. But these gramdmas were better. And what a beautiful thing. They didn't know each other and now they have a bond for a lifetime.

CAMEROTA: OK, a great way to end the show.