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EARLY START

Tariff Trouble, Canadian Prime Minister Calls Insulting; Ready For A Fight, Somebody Is Lying; Groundbreaking Breast Cancer Study; Assad To Visit North Korea; Jordanians Protest Tax Reform For Fifth Night; Can Apple Curb Phone Addiction; Graduation Day At Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Aired 4:30-5a ET

Aired June 4, 2018 - 04:30   ET

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


[04:30:00]

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: Some of our biggest allies express unanimous concern as disappointment regarding Trump tariffs policies just announced it over the weekend. Now even senate Republicans trying to slow the President down.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You have everything you need. What else do you need? Man up? Make your decision.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: New claims this weekend from the President's legal team if a subpoena is unnecessary. The President cannot obstruct justice. He can pardon himself. It keeps and his recollection keeps changing. And by the way, he dictated the misleading statement about the infamous Trump Tower meeting.

BRIGGS: And many women diagnosed with early stage breast cancer may not need chemotherapy. A ground breaking study that could lead to big changes in treatment worldwide. Welcome back to "Early Start," everybody on Monday. I'm Dave Briggs.

ROMANS: And I'm Christine Romans. 30 minutes pass the hour. A lot to get to this morning. Let us start here.

The United States has isolated, the Canadians are insulted and the Finance Minister of the world, six largest economist issue a rare rebuke unanimous concern and disappointment in President Trump's metal tariffs. The U.S. hit the E.U., Mexico and Canada with steel and aluminum tariffs. Citing a national security threat with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau calls offensive.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JUSTIN TRUDEAU, CANADA, PRIME MINISTER: The idea that the Canadian steel that is in the military vehicles in the United States. The Canadian aluminum that makes your fighter jets is somehow now a threat. The idea that we are somehow a national security threat to the United States is quite frankly insulting and unacceptable.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: But the president and is team are steadfast here. Economic adviser Larry Kudlow says the tariff are not an attack on Canada.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LARRY KUDLOW, DIRECTOR, U.S. NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL: Mr. Trudeau, I think he is overreacting. I don't want to get into the middle of that. As a fine friend and ally of the United States. Nobody denies that, but the point is, we have to protect ourselves.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Well, the three U.S. allies plan to retaliate with their own tariffs on everything from farm products to blue jeans that could also raise prices for U.S. consumers and potentially risk jobs. Congressional Republicans are fuming.

Senator, Bob Corker, says they are working out on a plan to push back on these tariffs. At the same time the Chinese are furious too. After the U.S targeted $50 billion of Chinese good. China warns those tariffs will kill any potential overall trade deal. The U.S. and China just wrapped up their latest round of trade talks this weekend. Trade adviser Peter Navarro says, Trump-China policy is measured, it is thoughtful and it is strategic.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PETER NAVARRO, DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF TRADE AND MANUFACTURING TARIFFS: We love to have a peaceful and friendly relationship with China. But we also are standing firm on the idea. That the President is the leader on this and he has known this for decades.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How far are you willing to go?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: The administration really targeting high technology, trying to protect intellectual property and high tech assets in the United States, that is what Navarro said they are doing here.

He adds that the relationship with China structurally needs to change. And that is where they are beginning.

BRIGGS: Remember this wild claim during the presidential campaign from then candidate Donald Trump?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose any voters. OK?

(END VIDEO CLIP) BRIGGS: truest thing he ever said. If you thought that was a little

extreme. Rudy Giuliani taking it one step further. Insisting that even if the President shot someone he would not face criminal prosecution. Quote, if he shot James Comey, he'd be impeached the next day. Impeach him and then you can do whatever you want to him.

ROMANS: That capped off another whirlwind weekend for the Trump legal team. It began with "The New York Times" reporting on the confidential 20 page January letter from Mr. Trump's lawyers to Special Counsel, Robert Mueller. The letter argues the President cannot, by the nature of his job obstruct justice in the Russia investigation. More now from Boris Sanchez at the White House.

(BEGIN VIDEO)

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN NEWSROOM HOST: Dave and Christine, Rudy Giuliani, the President's attorney on the Sunday morning talk shows, echoed some of what we saw in those letters that were sent from the President's legal team to the Special Counsel that were printed by "The New York Time," on Saturday. He essentially said that he likely would have changed some of it, but then he agrees with roughly 80 percent of what is contained in those letter.

The idea that President Trump being the top law enforcement official in the country could end any investigation he so chooses. Even one that focuses in on him.

And then on the issue of pardons. He is arguing that, again, in theory, President Trump does have the legal authority to pardon himself. Something that he says likely will not be required and it could potentially cause a political uproar.

RUDY GUILIANI, ATTORNEY FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP: He has no intention of pardoning himself. But -- doesn't say he can't. I mean, that is another really interesting constitutional argument. Can the President pardon himself? I think, the political implications of that would be tough. Pardoning other people is one thing. Pardoning yourself is another.

[04:35:02] SANCHEZ: Guiliani also said that any subpoena coming from the Special Counsel would wind up in court. He would try to challenge it. Further he said, that the President reserves the right to potentially try to prove again in court that the Special Counsel probe is illegitimate. Dave and Christine.

(END VIDEO)

ROMANS: All right. Boris at the White House, thank you Boris. Even from President Trump's strongest supporters are not buying the argument that it is impossible for him to obstruct justice. Here is what former New Jersey Governor, Christ Christie has to say about that subject.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP CHRIS CHRISTIE, (R) NEW JERSEY: It is an outrageous claim. It is wrong. They were trying to make a board argument, lawyers do that all the time.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Christie is a former federal prosecutor and once led the Trump transition team.

BRIGGS: A stunning admission buried within the letter from the president's legal team to Robert Mueller. The first acknowledgment the President did dictate the initial misleading statement about Don Jr.'s meeting with Russians at Trump tower. Now, recall the point of that meeting was for the Russians to deliver quote, dirt about Hillary Clinton. But the statement initially put out in Don Jr.'s name, said the topic was mostly the adoption of Russian children. Here is what a Trump lawyer said at the time.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAY SEKULOW, PRESIDENT TRUMP' LAWYER: That was written by Donald Trump Jr. and I am sure within consultation with his lawyer. So that wasn't written by the President. The President did not signed on anything, the president was not involved in the drafting of the statement and the not issues statement. It came from Donald Trump Jr.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: As to reconcile the contradiction on another member of the Trump legal team, Rudy Guiliani, used it as a new reason the President should not testify in the Mueller probe.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GUILIANI: This is the reason you don't let the President testify. If, you know, every -- our recollection keeps changing.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Our recollection keeps changing. Giuliani said he thinks Trump lawyers, who said the President did not dictate the Don Jr. statement were quote, uninformed. He also said the president wants to testify. He believes he is innocent.

BRIGGS: President Trump claims he never would have hired Paul Manafort as his campaign manager, if the Justice Department has simply warned him, Manafort was under investigation. Mr. Trump tweeting, "As only one of two people who left who could become President, why won't the FBI or Department of Justice have told me that they were secretly investigating Paul Manafort? Should have told me. Paul Manafort came into campaign very late. He was with us for a short period of time." Manafort was with the campaign for nearly five months. Three as chairman. It was not very late in the campaign.

ROMANS: Manafort was hired to help get Donald Trump through the convention. Remember, a fact not lost on former Trump campaign aide, Sam Nunberg. Nunberg tweeting, "Donald, nice selective memory. You hired Paul, because you were losing the delegate fight during the primary. If you stuck with Lewandowsky, you would not have been nominee. You are lucky Paul works for you." Manafort has been indicted by Special Counsel, Robert Mueller on charges that include alleged bank fraud and foreign lobbying violations. The charges not related to his work with the Trump campaign.

BRIGGS: Former President Bill Clinton says impeachment proceedings would have already have begun if a Democrat were President. Clinton who was of course impeached, thinks Republicans would not be as tolerant if something like to Russian investigation wit this far along. Here is what he told CBS Sunday morning.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL CLINTON, FORMER UNITED STATES OF AMERICA PRESIDENT: I think if roles were reversed and I'm just talking based on my experience. If it were a Democratic President and these facts were present, most people I know in Washington would believe impeachment hearings would have been gone already.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: Pointing alongside, thank god to James Paterson, they also took issue with the President's rhetoric and name calling.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CLINTON: I don't like all this. I could not be elected anything now, because I just don't like embarrassing people. My mother would have whipped me for five days in a row when I was a little boy, if I spent my time bad mouthing people like this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: The former president was on CBS for bestselling author James Paterson, promoting a political thriller. The two had written together. Could be interesting.

ROMANS: And the president is actually not very common to whip the kids for five days in a row.

First Lady, Melania Trump set to attend a White House event honoring Gold Star families tonight, the reception is closed to the media, but it will mark the first time Mrs. Trump has participated in an official event in almost a month. On May 10th, the first couple greeted American prisoners freed by North Korea at Joint Based Andrews. Four days later the first lady went to her -- with her spokesman called a benign kidney procedure. She has not been seen in public since. Officials say Mrs. Trump will not join the president for the G summit, or the summit next week with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. She did attend the Italian G7 summit last year, but she will not be going to the G7 this year.

BRIGGS: All right. Recently a tweet saying, I see the media is working overtime speculating where I am and what I am doing. Rest assured, I'm at the White House with my family feeling great. Working hard on behalf of children and the American people.

Ahead, President Trump eight days from meeting with Kim Jong-un, but another world leader headed to Kim's front door.

04:40:02] Bashar al Assad. What does his visit have to do with these upcoming nuclear talks?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROMANS: Welcome back. 44 minutes past the hour. With just eight days until President Trump meets with Kim Jong-un, North Korea, so Kim plans to sit down with another leader. Bashar al Assad. North Korea state news agency says the Syrian President is planning to visit Kim in North Korea. Alexandra Field has more live from Seoul. What's this about?

[04:45:10] ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Christine, President Trump just last week said that everyone was talking so nicely enough, because the summit is back on. It seems that North Korea is also talking a lot to some of his closest and oldest friend. Not only have there been meetings between the leaders of North Korea and China plans for meeting between the leader of North Korea and Russia, but now plans for Kim Jong-un to meet with Bashar al Assad, the Syrian president.

Yes, these are two countries that have history that stretches back decades it had friendly relations since the 60's. Kim Jong-un grandfather, the founder of North Korea actually met with the Assad's father in the 70s and Kim and Assad had frequently traded messages of encouragement, congratulations and support.

In fact the U.N. found evidence of support in a formed of cooperation on chemical weapons in a report that is released just this past winter. But this is the first time that Assad and Kim will come face- to-face. And North Korean State news says the meeting will happen in Pyongyang. The date has not yet been set or reported, at least it seems.

Also in Pyongyang, a shuffle at the top of the North Korean military. We are hearing about reports where replacement of the chief of army, chief of defense and the director of the general political bureau. South Korean officials where asked what they meet of this? They said yes, it is in fact unusual to swap out all three at once, but they said that North Korea must have its reasons.

What we know is that these men are younger. They have served in high level positions and sensitive positions and said to have experience with foreign affairs. So, perhaps this is a sign of preparation for that big sit-down just eight days away. Christine.

ROMANS: Certainly, the regime looks as though it is playing diplomacy here around the globe with it. Really, a new profile. All right, thank you so much for that, Alex.

BRIGGS: Jordanians turning out Sunday for the fifth day of the biggest protest the country has seen in years. Demonstrators gathering in the streets to protest higher taxes and energy prices. Police clashing with some protesters trying to breakthrough barriers, to the Prime Minister's office. CNN's Jomanah Karadsheh tracking the latest situation to joins us with the latest on this. Good morning Jomanah.

JOMANAH KARADSHEH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Dave. We have seen this protest growing in size. They had been spreading across the country from the north to the south, but the main focus as you mentioned is in the capital Amman. On Sunday night thousands took to the streets outside the government headquarters and seems it really reminisces the Arab spring uprising that we saw in this region. The two main demands. They want the current government gone. They want the king to fire the Prime Minister and his government. They want a halt to these proposed income tax law that aims to widen the tax base, increase taxes, penalize those not paying an income tax.

This is all because of recommendations that Jordan has had to fulfill. This was put in place by the International Monetary Fund. This country, a very little resources and relying on foreign aid. In 2016, they got a three-year credit line from the IMF, but they had to meet certain conditions with the austerity measures. This proposed tax law is the latest.

For Jordanians, they say this is the final straw. They are fed up with the rising cost of living and their wages that have not changed. The ball right now is in the court of the Jordanian king. What he does next when it comes to the demands of these protesters. You know, it is a very tough position with these recommendations from the IMF they have to meet and also anger on the streets that we have not seen in Jordan in years. Dave.

BRIGGS: Not showing any signs of slowing down. Jomana, thank you.

ROMANS: In Guatemala, death toll rising to 25 in the eruption of the Fuego volcano. In total, more than 1.7 million people affected here. Local officials say the eruption has officially ended, but there is still volcanic ash in the air in the 12-mile radius surrounding the volcano. They are warning residents in these three towns to watch out for volcanic rock and ash. They are asking anyone living near the volcano to evacuate immediately.

BRIGGS: All right. Apple is expected to launch a new iPhone feature to address a problem it may have helped create. IPhone addiction. We will get a check on "CNN Money" next.

[04:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROMANS: A groundbreaking study finds some 70 percent of women with the most common form of early stage breast cancer can safely skip chemotherapy. The remarkable research here. Researchers used genetics testing and tumor samples to gauge the patient's risk, the results could spare thousands of women from toxic treatment that would not benefit them and help tailored treatment to different types of breast cancer. It is the most common cancer in women worldwide. The study was published in the New England Journal of medicine.

BRIGGS: Beautiful and heartbreaking. That is how one parent described graduation at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. The ceremony came almost four months after the massacre at the school. Four members of the graduating class were among the victims. Family members and close friends were there to accept diplomas as the names of the deceased seniors were called.

[04:55:00] Members of the class of 2018 wore sashes, bearing the message MSD Strong which has been the school rallying cry. Sunday's commencement also came with a surprise. More now from CNN's Dianne Gallagher in Parkland.

(BEGIN VIDEO)

DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, Dave and Christine, it is a day that so many of the students at Marjory Stoneman High School were looking forward to and yet it is the same time, kind of dreading and that is because, it is really difficult to kind of find that balance between celebrating the past four years and also acknowledging the trauma of the past nearly four months.

Especially when they are going to be four members of the senior class who are not able to walk across the stage, because they were murdered in their own school on February 14th. Nicholas Dworet, Carmen Schentrup, Joaquin Oliver and Meadow Pollack. Those four seniors who did not get to graduate on Sunday, because they were killed in that massacre at the school.

The school had been working to try to find that balance of grief and graduation. One of the grand marshals, the AP government teacher, Jeff behind the scene had been working to get a guest speaker. Something they don't do very often. The surprise for all the students on Sunday, the "Tonight show host," Jimmy Fallon came out and spoke to them, he cracked some jokes, but also encouraged them.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JIMMY FALLON, THE TONIGHT SHOW: Today you are graduating from high school. You should feel incredibly proud of yourselves. It does not mean you should rest on your laurels or your yannys. (Inaudible), but the most important thing to know that neither these things will matter by the end of the summer. When something feels hard, remember that it gets better. Choose to move forward. Don't let it stop you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GALLAGHER: There were political statements, Dave and Christine that we have been so used to seeing now from those students in the wake of what happened there. Even the teachers got in on it wearing this sort of a lipstick, orange color, lipstick called fired-up from the lipstick lobby. The proceeds of that goes to the Brady center for gun violence. So there are still that spirit that we have seen from the students. Dave and Christine.

(END VIDEO)

ROMANS: Dianne Gallagher, thank you so much for that piece.

An FBI agent could face charges for busting a move in a Denver bar and accidentally shooting someone. Take a look at the off-duty agent in a dance-off early Saturday morning. Loses his gun on a waistband holster while doing a back flip. An impressive backflip actually. The weapon fires when he scrambles to grab it, hitting a customer in the lower leg, the agent has not been arrested or identified. The District Attorney's office will determine whether charges will be filed.

BRIGGS: The Golden State Warriors beating the Cleveland Cavaliers, 122-103. Taking a two nothing lead in the NBA finals. Steph Curry, the finals record with nine three's on 17 attempts. 33 points in all. The Warriors fans also on top of their game. They gave the Cavs J.R. Smith a standing ovation during a pretty game and also serenaded him with MVP chants during the game.

Of course, it was Smith's brain freeze in the final seconds to game one that cost the Cavs a possible win. Series now moves to Cleveland for game three on Wednesday night.

ROMANS: All right. Let's get a check on "CNN Money," this Monday morning. Global stocks higher today. A strong jobs report in the U.S. overshadowing worries of a trade war between the U.S. and the rest of the world. Including China, the E.U., Canada and Mexico. A trade war would dent otherwise solid U.S. Economy. The U.S. added 223,000 jobs in April. The jobless rate fell to an 18 year low, 3.8 percent. The help Wall Street close higher Friday.

Apple is expected to launch a new feature that fixes the problem that Apple help create. Phone addiction. CEO, Tim Cook will announce the Apple's latest software updates today during its annual developer conference. And the iPhone's next operating system will include a tool that reduces the time spent on the smartphone. Including the latest app limit for certain app. Apple has long promised such a feature. In January, two major shareholders asked Apple to study the impact of excessive smartphone usage.

Hans Solo is still not a box office force. Ticket sales for "Solo, the Star Wars story" dropped 65 percent in the second weekend. Analyst expected to make less than $450 million worldwide. OK, so that is a great haul for most movies, but that is disappointment for a "Star Wars" film. The last two "Star Wars" raked in more than $1 billion each. Barely covers production and marketing cost. I have not seen this one yet. It is on my list, but I haven't seen it.

BRIGGS: So much anticipated used to be built on these films. But now, with the increase and the more releases, I wonder if you just get a little fatigued.

ROMANS: Maybe.

BRIGGS: A little less anticipation. All right, "Early Start" continues right now with the impact of this worldwide trump tariffs.