Return to Transcripts main page
Summit Agreement Unsettles Many; Secretary of State Pompeo Arrives In Seoul Today For Summit Briefing; Trump-Kim Summit Huge Success For China; Social Media Goes Wild As Raccoon Scales Skyscraper. Aired 5:30-6a ET
Aired June 13, 2018 - 05:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[05:31:24] DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: President Trump lands at Joint Base Andrews fresh off his summit with Kim Jong Un. Can the president deliver a verifiable deal to denuke the Korean Peninsula?
Welcome back to EARLY START, everybody, 5:31 eastern time. We'll continue with these pictures and show you when the president deplanes from Air Force One.
It is also 4:31 central time. That's in Minneapolis where a raccoon is shutting down Twitter with the hashtag #mprraccoon.
But, there is the president's plane coming to a stop. If he stops to talk with reporters, which you just never know, we will take those words as the president delivers them, perhaps reacting to some of the criticism of the lack of details on this North Korean deal.
Now, following his historic meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, the president has plenty of work to do to show the summit was more than just a photo op.
Trump's announcement that the U.S. will stop military exercises with South Korea -- what he called provocative war games -- caught Tokyo and Seoul off guard. "The Wall Street Journal" reports the military would continue to train with its South Korean counterparts but not large-scale joint exercises.
So, the lack of clarity causing some confusion on Capitol Hill and elsewhere. Critics and experts say the president made significant concessions to Kim without getting anything meaningful in return. And 24 hours later, the White House still has not explained how the U.S. will verify North Korean denuclearization.
But some observers, like former director of National Intelligence James Clapper, give the president credit for moving things in the right direction.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LT. GEN. JAMES CLAPPER (RET.), CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST, FORMER DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: We're in a much better place where we're on the diplomatic path as opposed to where we were say, six or eight months ago, so that's the only real solution here in my mind. But remember, Kim Jong Un is not term-limited and he's in it for the long game, and I think President Trump is more in it for the immediate self-gratification.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BRIGGS: President Trump may know something about the art of the deal but now it's on Mike Pompeo to close the deal. The secretary of state, he just landed in Seoul, South Korea. He'll brief the South Koreans on the Trump-Kim summit. Then, he's charged with negotiating an agreement that leads to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
And for the first time since President Trump and Kim Jong Un shook hands, we're getting reaction from the North Korean regime.
Nic Robertson joins us live with that from Seoul. Good morning, Nic.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Yes, good morning, Dave.
A warm, glowing reaction from the North Korean regime, absolutely unusual and never really heard of before where they would praise the United States or praise President Trump directly.
But this is what they're saying. They're saying, "President Trump expressed his belief that this summit will improve the United States- North Korea relations." But he also said that the "supreme leader's active and peace-loving measures that were started earlier this year established peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula."
So, praising President Trump, praising Kim Jong Un, which is not surprising -- that's what they normally do -- but also praising President Trump's praise of Kim Jong Un. That is absolutely unusual.
So, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has just landed here in South Korea about 15 minutes ago. He didn't brief reporters on the flight, we understand, but he will be meeting with President Moon, South Korea's president, tomorrow morning -- Thursday morning here.
And he will also meet the foreign minister of South Korea and the foreign minister of Japan, who is expected to update them.
[05:35:02] The latest we have from the South Koreans about the issue and confusion, it seems, about President Trump's statement about ending those joint military training exercises is that they would like to get some clarity and like to know precisely what President Trump means.
But they're also indicating a willingness to work with how the United States plans to move forward with this relationship with North Korea because they believe it's absolutely fundamental to their peace and security.
Perhaps we'll hear more from Sec. Pompeo after he's had a chance to brief his counterparts here and the president here tomorrow -- Dave. BRIGGS: And for those wondering what was on television during the summit in North Korea -- well, it was a musical about mining, of course.
Nic Robertson live for us in Seoul with the latest. Thank you, sir.
The true impact of the Trump-Kim summit may not be known for years and years but one big winner has emerged for now and that's China.
Let's check in there with Matt Rivers who is live in Beijing with the latest -- Matt.
MATT RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Dave, you could make a very good argument there that China is just nothing but pleased with the way this summit went. And look, specifically, at what you heard from the President of the United States if you want to find out why China's government is likely very, very happy.
Start with the fact that the president specifically talked about removing troops from -- U.S. troops from the Korean Peninsula. He said it's not on the table at the moment but he said it's something he would like to see well down the road at some point.
China wants the exact same thing. They've wanted it for decades now. They feel that U.S. troops on the peninsula threaten them and constrain their activities, so they were very happy when they heard that, undoubtedly.
The other thing that China's going to be very pleased about is when the president spoke about at least temporarily suspending those military exercises -- what he called war games. China doesn't like those war games at all -- those military exercises at all and probably not any more than the North Koreans do because those exercises are not only focused on North Korea, they're also designed with an eye on China as well.
So when you take both of those things combined, China has a lot to be happy about.
And it will be really interesting. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo set to come through Beijing and meet with Foreign Minister Wang Yi here in China. That's happening on Thursday. We are expecting a press availability with those two men.
We're going to be paying attention to what Secretary of State Pompeo has to say, when in China, very, very closely -- Dave.
BRIGGS: Ian Bremmer, author and U.S. foreign policy expert, said "A freeze for freeze -- exactly the formation that the Chinese have asked for." He'll be on "NEW DAY" to explain all of that.
Matt Rivers live for us in Beijing. Thank you.
We are continuing to watch screen left there. The President of the United States preparing to deplane from Air Force One after his trip home. If he speaks to reporters we will certainly listen in on that. Joining us now, "CNN POLITICS" digital director Zach Wolf, live for us in Washington.
Zach, we will, of course, interrupt anything that might be said if the president speaks to reporters. We still have not gotten a glimpse of him as he prepares to deplane.
But let's first focus on this agreement. Let's celebrate the fact that the world is a better place as a result of the Singapore summit.
But as for the details, how much did the United States get in return in exchange for giving up what the president calls provocative war games?
ZACHARY WOLF, DIGITAL DIRECTOR, "CNN POLITICS": It seems like they got very little concrete yesterday and I think everybody admits that. There's this blanket statement from the North Koreans to denuclearize but they've made that kind of a statement before, so that's nothing new there.
On the other hand, they've given up essentially elevating Kim to the level where he can -- he can meet with the U.S. president with the flags flying behind them and put him on the level of a -- of a major world leader as opposed to a despot. And they've also given up the idea of these military exercises, which makes a lot of people nervous.
But you're not really hearing a lot of that criticism from Congress at the moment. A lot of Republicans seem sort of cowed essentially, by the president, at the moment, particularly on this.
They're happy maybe that the temperature's lowered a bit on this. You don't have Trump and Kim essentially trading nuclear barbs so that, I think everybody can agree, is a step in the right direction.
BRIGGS: But not much different than what we've seen by these guarantees in the past from the North Korean government.
As to the process of denuking the peninsula, that starts, we hope today, with Mike Pompeo in Seoul.
Here's what the president told Sean Hannity.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I just think that we are now going to start the process of denuclearization of North Korea. And I believe that he's going back and will start it virtually immediately, and he's already indicated that.
And you look at what he's done. So we got our hostages back but they've blown up on of their sites -- one of their testing sites -- their primary testing site. In fact, some people say their only testing site.
[05:40:09] They're getting rid of a missile, which isn't in the document that was done afterwards. They're getting rid of a missile testing site. They're doing so much now.
So, it's a process and it's going -- it's really moving rapidly.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BRIGGS: Now, Zach, with the context of the president called the Iran nuclear deal the worst deal ever made, how far are we from even getting a deal that resembles the worst deal ever?
WOLF: Well, I mean, that was something that took essentially years to --
WOLF: -- negotiate.
There was a complicated system of ways to check on Iran and verify, essentially, that they were doing this -- these things. And that was something that was -- not everybody was sure they were trusting Iran, obviously, and Trump was chief among those people. But the U.S., for a while, was certifying that Iran was living up to its expectations.
That kind of framework is not the kind of thing that we're seeing in North Korea right now where we have this broad statement of intention with zero specifics.
So as we start to iron out the specifics, I'm not -- I would be shocked if Kim went back home and immediately just started saying let's blow everything up while Mike Pompeo is still negotiating the details. It doesn't seem like that's going to happen despite what the president says.
BRIGGS: Yes. Pompeo said the other day the "V" matters. Right now, the "V" is all that matters and that will be difficult, if not impossible.
Zach, we had a whole eight hours of quiet bliss. The president not tweeting. He's back on Twitter after this long flight home. We're waiting for him to deplane.
But let me read this tweet from him just four minutes ago.
"My political representatives didn't want me to get involved in the Mark Sanford primary thinking that Sanford would easily win. But with a few hours left I felt that Katie [State Rep. Katie Arrington] was such a good candidate and Sanford was so bad, I had to give it a shot. Congrats to Katie Arrington!"
A couple of things here. What is the lesson for conservative Republicans in speaking out against the president, and as we move forward on this North Korea deal who will check the president if we don't get deliverables from North Korea?
WOLF: The lesson, clearly, if you look at Mark Sanford not going to be returning to Congress. If you look at Jeff Flake, another of the president's -- more chief in his criticism than Sanford. These past comments will come back to haunt you come primary time,
especially as people who are more supportive of the president challenge 'Never Trumpers' -- essentially, people who -- Republicans who did not like the president during the 2016 campaign and said bad things about him. That's essentially coming home to roost for those people and that's a very difficult thing.
I think that's a pretty clear message. If you've been critical of the president you've got to kind of change that come primary time.
And as far as who's going to check him going forward, I think everybody's kind of waiting to see what the details of this are going to be. Nobody wants to upset it with the temperature cooled, with Kim at the table, with Trump at the table. It doesn't really make sense to raise alarm bells about something potentially as it's still in motion.
BRIGGS: And Mike Pompeo, during the Iran deal negotiations, was a strong voice against the deal but also in saying Congress should have a role here. So you wonder if he still feels that same way about whatever happens with North Korea.
Indications are at this point, yes. But there were some critical comments from conservatives yesterday given everything that happened in North Korea.
Let's start off with Marco Rubio.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: He obviously, I would imagine, doesn't truly believe this guy's that talented. I mean, he inherited the family business from his father and his grandfather. The family business is dictatorship.
But I think the president's trying to butter the guy up to make it easier to get a deal with him.
SEN. JEFF FLAKE (R), ARIZONA: I think sometimes the president has a tendency to stand up and say things that are ad hoc that haven't been vetted. And sometimes, those things are walked back after he's had conversations with people that are relevant to what he said. So we'll -- again, I think that's really important to get Pompeo in.
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: If you try to play Trump or back out, there's going to be a war and nobody wants a war. Look what Trump does with Canada when he thinks he's wronged. So I wouldn't go down that road if I was North Korea.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BRIGGS: So as we watch the president there deplane from Air Force One after that long flight back to Joint Base Andrews, shaking some hands with military leaders. Perhaps we will hear a word or two from the president. We will bring you those if he speaks. But let me pick up on what Lindsey Graham said there, Zach. Is the difference in this equation that President Trump has made it clear as opposed to presidents past that military action is imminent if North Korea doesn't begin the process of permanent denuclearization?
[05:45:01] WOLF: I'm not -- I'm not sure you can draw a direct line. I mean, they want to say that it was his earlier rhetoric that essentially caused North Korea to come to the table. I'm not really sure that you can definitively say that, particularly because they've essentially given so much to North Koreans.
They've elevated them, they had the pomp and circumstance. They allowed Kim to be -- to be seen with Trump and negotiate directly with the U.S. president. That put the North Korean leader on a level that he hasn't been on in the past.
I'm not -- I'm not sure that we can say specifically it was -- it was earlier, Trump essentially threatening nuclear war that brought them to the table.
WOLF: Although we'll be talking about this for a long time so maybe it will come to be.
BRIGGS: We certainly will. And, North Korea, in the short-term, is a clear winner here given all the flattery that President Trump threw upon Kim Jong Un. All of the praise and the talk of chemistry.
Some video here of the president back in his car. A short helicopter flight -- Marine One -- to the White House. Perhaps he will speak with reporters upon returning to the White House.
Zach Wolf, thanks so much for joining us from Washington, D.C.
So, we're 24 hours from the Singapore summit and deflating a nuclear showdown.
And yet, the top-trending topic on Twitter at 4:46 central time is the #mprraccoon. We will give you an update about this critter climbing a skyscraper in Minnesota and virtually shutting down Twitter. Oh, you've got to love it, folks.
That latest, next on EARLY START.
[05:50:54] BRIGGS: Five fifty eastern time.
A check on "CNN Money" this morning.
Global stocks mixed ahead of a meeting of the Federal Reserve today. The U.S. central bank is expected to raise interest rates. The Fed intends to hike rates three times this year but Wall Street is looking for any sign it might change those plans. The U.S. budget deficit widened 23 percent during the first eight months of the fiscal year. The deficit tracks the difference between how much money the government spends and takes in -- and the total, $532 billion.
Why the big jump? Lower corporate tax revenue coupled with ramped-up spending.
Elon Musk wants Tesla to be profitable so he's laying off nine percent of its staff. That's several thousand jobs.
In an e-mail to staff, Musk said the cuts will affect salaried positions and will not touch Model 3 production staff. Tesla has consistently missed production deadlines for its first mass-market car but promises to reach its goal by the end of the month.
The co-founder of Guess is resigning amid harassment claims from supermodel Kate Upton. Paul Marciano will step down following an investigation by Guess into his behavior. Guess said it could not corroborate many allegations but found Marciano exercised poor judgment with models and photographers.
In February, Kate Upton claimed Marciano verbally harassed and touched her inappropriately. Marciano denies the accusation.
Breaking overnight, Republicans announcing there will be a vote in the House next week on two immigration bills. Late last night, GOP leaders reached an agreement that satisfied conservatives and headed of a moderate-led revolt.
One of the bills, a conservative measure that is not expected to pass. The other, still being drafted and is expected to offer a solution for DACA recipients while adding resources for border security. The Senate has not indicated whether it will even take up the bill if it passes the House.
Remember though, very real implications for immigration law. The Department of Health and Human Services is now considering three military bases in Texas as possible temporary shelters for unaccompanied immigrant children -- excuse me.
Within an hour, we'll know who will host the World Cup in 2026, the world's largest sporting event. Is it North America or Morocco? That decision just moments away.
[05:57:44] BRIGGS: Soccer's international governing body voting right now on a host nation for the 2026 World Cup. FIFA officials choosing between Morocco and North America, with the result expected in the next hour.
President Trump has sent three letters to FIFA assuring officials that foreign teams and their fans will be able to travel to the United States if North America is chosen. There have been concerns about the president's travel ban.
The 2018 World Cup, though, kicks off tomorrow in Russia.
He made it. A daredevil raccoon climbed all the way up the roof of a Minnesota skyscraper, the UBS building -- 25 stories. The critter, branded hashtag #mprraccoon by Minnesota Public Radio, has just about shut down the Internet on his way to the top -- the top-trending hashtag on Twitter at this moment.
The little daredevil descended a couple of times only to turn and head skyward again. Animal control officials set traps on the roof to capture #mprraccoon if he made it. Still awaiting word whether the traps worked. They used cat food to bait the raccoon.
Thanks for joining us, everybody. I'm Dave Briggs.
"NEW DAY" starts right now and they have plenty to cover with the president just tweeting and just landing. "A long trip, but everybody can now feel much safer than the day I took office."
They will analyze all that -- Erica Hill and Alisyn Camerota -- right now.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JIM RISCH (R), IDAHO: He is committed to get airtight verification.
SEN. ROBERT MENENDEZ (D), NEW JERSEY: This is the most anemic communique with very little substance on anything.
GRAHAM: I support stopping the exercises. Training with our allies is money well spent.
TRUMP: He's smart and loves his people.
SEN. JOHN KENNEDY (R), LOUISIANA: Kim Jong Un is a butcher. You can do it but you have to do it very, very carefully.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Alisyn Camerota and John Berman.
ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone. Welcome to your NEW DAY. It is Wednesday, June 13th, 6:00 here in New York.
John Berman is on his way back from Asia, and Erica Hill joins me. Great to work with you.
ERICA HILL, CNN ANCHOR: So nice to be here this morning.
CAMEROTA: Well, we have a busy morning --
HILL: That, we do.
CAMEROTA: -- so let's get right to it. Here's our "Starting Line." President Trump is back in Washington after making history with his North Korea summit. The president celebrating with a series of tweets touting his great relationship with Kim Jong Un.
Now, America's top diplomat, Mike Pompeo, will arrive in South Korea to face questions about what happens next.
Meanwhile back at home, Republican Congressman Mark Sanford, a vocal critic of President Trump, lost his seat after the --