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EARLY START

White House Plan For Reuniting Families; Sarah Sanders Asked To Leave Restaurant; Erdogan Wins Re-election In Turkey; U.S. Fine Tunes Wish List For North Korea. Aired 5-5:30a ET

Aired June 25, 2018 - 05:00   ET

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


[05:00:00]

MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN ANCHOR: -- don't expect fast action. Homeland Security officials say 2,053 children are still in the custody of the Department of Health and Human Services and they will remain that way until their parents' deportation proceedings are completed. Families will be reunited before deportation or if a parent is released, they can then apply to serve as the child's sponsor.

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: According to Homeland Security officials over 500 families have been reunited since the zero-tolerance policy started and parents are now being offered the option of signing voluntary departure orders to speed up their cases.

They are being assured they will be reunited with their children, if they do sign. But the offer raising eyebrows with advocates who question whether these families clearly understand its terms.

KOSINSKI: President Trump is now talking about depriving immigrants of due process. Let's go live to Washington and bring in Philip Wegmann, commentary writer for "The Washington Examiner."

So, Phil, let's take a look at some of the president's tweets over the weekend. He says, "We cannot allow these people to invade our country. When somebody comes in, we much immediately with no judges or court cases bring them back from where they came. Our system is a mockery to good immigration policy and law and order.

Most children come without parents. Our immigration policy laughed at all over the world. Very unfair to those people who have gone through the system legally and are waiting on line for years. Immigration must be based on merit. We need people who will help to make America great again."

Well, that's a lot. He said a lot on those tweets but using words like invade and talking about not using judges. Give us your thoughts on that.

PHILIP WEGMANN, COMMENTARY WRITER, "WASHINGTON EXAMINER": Well, I think it is incredibly interesting that you have a president whose main pitch is a law and order guy and now talking about acting without law and order. Obviously, this flies in the face of due process and our constitutionals system here. But, again, it is no surprise. This is Donald Trump who spent $85,000 to take out those ads in the "New York Times" condemning the Central Park 5 after they were accused of wrongdoing. That is not surprising.

It is also not surprising that this plays well to his base because for a significant amount of time there has been laxed enforcement of immigration laws. Now we are seeing this overreaction. Unfortunately, this overreaction is coming at the cost of our constitutional principles and this will cause more problems going forward.

BRIGGS: Also, not on the right side of his own party. I mean, Ted Cruz wants more than 700 additional judges. Ron Johnson said at least 200 more judges are needed. If you are a Republican running in a vulnerable spot around the country, what do you make of the president pivoting towards immigration to stoke that base?

When the economy is on fire and the peace and prosperity looks like was going to be your agenda considering what happened on the Korean Peninsula? Do you like this if you are a Republican up for re- election?

WEGMANN: You are terrified. I mean, look, the president ran on two things, it was the economy and the border. The economy is doing pretty well right now. Congressional Republicans are loving that. But tow they have to go back to their districts and answer questions about kids who are behind chain-linked fences.

And I think the really cynical cruel reality here is that this president and also to a lesser extent, the Democratic opposition, they believe the current crisis is good for the electoral chances. I mean, you have Steven Miller, who is promising more crackdowns. He will not get the walls.

And so in lieu of that, he wants some, you know, harsh measures to show the GOP base that they are doing something. On the flip side, Democrats I don't think have an incentive to help solve this problem right now because the longer this crisis is festering on to the southern border, the longer we don't take responsibility and do something.

That is, you know, a better argument for changing leadership in Washington at the congressional level.

KOSINSKI: So, I feel like this Sanders issue over the weekend is something you could debate all day as to whether this was the right thing to do and whether this is going to benefit Democrats or Republicans and the reaction to this.

There's Sarah Sanders tweeting last night, "I was told by the owner to leave because I worked for POTUS and I politely left. Her actions say far more about her than me. I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with respectfully and will continue to do so."

I think a lot of people will have a question about whether her treatment of particularly the press is respectful. Her treatment of the truth at times is respectful?

But what do you think of the reaction? How far will this go when you have people like Maxine Waters calling for people to go forward with this, keep on going. This is emotional. This is a real thing now.

[05:05:11] WEGMANN: Absolutely. I mean, we are seeing things change dramatically in front of our very eyes. I think it's very interesting that our parents' parents did marches and sit ins, and apparently, this generation in D.C. just wants to ruin people's brunch.

I mean, it is fundamentally different. But look, you know, I'm pro- dinner. I want to go on the record saying that I don't want anyone interrupting my meal. But at the same time, if you look at what happened to Sarah Huckabee Sanders, no one said that she could not get on an airline.

No one said that she could not medical care instead, you know, she was denied a meal at a restaurant in Washington, D.C. I think that, you know, I agree with a lot of my liberal friends here, who say that she can go somewhere else for a dinner. It is unpleasant.

But, you know, I think that the restaurant was within their rights to say no. Go elsewhere. At the same time, though, I think that we need to be consistent. If you are going to say that a restaurant doesn't have to bake the chicken for Sarah Huckabee Sanders, then, you know, I don't think that, you know, a baker should be forced to bake the cake either way.

In the end, the bottom line is that I think the market can solve a lot of these problems and we can debate these things amongst ourselves.

KOSINSKI: Plus, there's always the Trump International Tower Restaurant for everybody.

BRIGGS: Well, you just wonder what the impact of this is down the road. Phil, next we have Democrat president and their cabinet is not allowed to eat in parts of this country. You know, look, you are right. They have every right to do this, every restaurant does.

KOSINSKI: I agree.

BRIGGS: This not a good sign for where we are in 2018. Do you think this could come back to hurt Democrats when they are running on this and Maxine Waters is saying they should expect it and encouraging it?

WEGMANN: Absolutely. And so here is where I think the distinction is important. What happened with Sarah Huckabee Sanders was an interaction between her and consumer and someone else who is providing a service. That is fundamentally different than what, you know, Nielsen experienced at that restaurant.

It is also fundamentally different from what Maxine Waters is advocating for right now. This idea that we are going to go mob people in order to, you know, affect social change is not realistic.

In fact, that is not what democracy looks like. That is what mob rule looks like and that is incredibly disappointing to see because it doesn't just stop there. Instead, it undermines the system. It says your vote doesn't matter.

It says your letter to the congressman, editor and peaceful assembly doesn't matter. What it means is go troll people and ruin their lives outside of work. I think that is a very, very dangerous path to go down.

KOSINSKI: This administration often uses heavy rhetoric and emotional words and statements.

BRIGGS: The media is the enemy of the people.

KOSINSKI: You will get an emotional reaction. You will get it.

BRIGGS: All right. More in about 30 minutes. Phil, thank you.

Elsewhere, Turkish President Recep Erdogan tightening control over his country after surviving the most serious threat to his political dominance thus far. Erdogan declaring himself the winner of Turkey's election before the official results were announced. His opponents claiming state media and the Election Commission manipulated the results.

Let's go live to Istanbul and bring in CNN's Sam Kiley. Sam, is this a legitimate election?

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the leading opposition candidate, who got about 30 percent of the vote has just been speaking. In fact, he is still speaking and conceding that he lost the election. But bitterly bemoaning the future for Turkey which, he says is now under existential threat from what he calls one man and one-party rule.

That is because Mr. Erdogan emerged as the clear victor in the first round of these presidential elections with 53 percent of the votes. He said the president that is, there was a turnout close to 90 percent among the 60 million registered voters in Turkey.

So, from that perspective, he's emerged with a strong mandate that the new Constitution here in Turkey concentrates executive power in a quite remarkable way in the office of the president. He gets to rule by decree effectively, appoints his cabinet from outside any elected parliamentarians and controls the judicial areas of government.

And therefore, from the opposition perspective, this has been an agonizing moment. They had hoped to be able to force a runoff and at least send some kind of signal to Mr. Erdogan that there must be some room for compromise.

But now he has another five-year term. Complete dominance in the parliament. It's unlikely that the opposition could do very much, but snipe away from the sides. There is not much constitutional room for them to maneuver in nor is there much access to the media, which now Mr. Erdogan pretty much controls in broadcast terms almost entirely -- David. BRIGGS: That is a frightening proposition there. All right. Sam Kiley live for us this morning, thank you.

KOSINSKI: Another strong man leader expanding his power.

[05:10:06] BRIGGS: Yes, this is terrifying for democracy and the free press around the world.

KOSINSKI: It is. The president has a lot on his plate. Yet, he finds time for a Twitter feud with Jimmy Fallon. "The Tonight Show" host speaking out about that infamous night he tussled Donald Trump's hair.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JIMMY FALLON, HOST, "THE TONIGHT'S SHOW" (via telephone): I did not do it to normalize him or say I believe in his political beliefs. I don't do that with any guest.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KOSINSKI: More of what Fallon says about that low points next.

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KOSINSKI: The White House preparing its formal follow-up to the recent Singapore summit. The U.S. is expected to give North Korea specific request and the timeline regarding Pyongyang's commitment to complete denuclearization.

CNN's Alexandra Field is live in Seoul with the latest. So, Alexandra, we have been waiting for the next step. Everyone asking what is the next step, this could be it, right?

[05:15:12] ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Right. You had President Trump in Singapore saying that he had reached a comprehensive agreement with North Korean Leader Kim Jong-Un. But essentially, it was an agreement to talk about denuclearization, to commit to working toward it.

That he also said at the time that it would be up to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to work with the counterparts in North Korea to actually put together a plan because the leaders did not decide on how this would happen, when it would happen or how it would be verified.

So, now you do have a senior U.S. defense official, who is saying that the U.S. will soon have to present its plan for implementation to North Korea, that that will come with these so-called specific asks as well as the timeline and most importantly perhaps data points.

Means by which the U.S. can determine whether or not North Korea is acting in good faith when it says it has plans to work toward denuclearization. There were other components of the deal that was struck in Singapore including North Korea saying that it would dismantle a missile engine test site. There is no indication at this point that that has been done or when it would be, but there was also an agreement that North Korea would take a step forward by returning the remains of some U.S. service members.

U.S. officials are now expecting the return of as many as 200 service members, though, of course, the remains that North Korea hands over could also have remains of soldiers who fought from other countries alongside the U.S.

In preparation for this return, the United States has sent about a hundred wooden coffins to the DMZ. It is not yet clear when exactly North Korea will hand over these remains. But from the DMZ, the remains are likely to travel to an airbase in South Korea.

Then they'll have to be flown to the United States for DNA testing likely to happen in Hawaii. This is something that families have waited for decades for and it certainly would be a step forward from North Korea -- Michelle.

KOSINSKI: That is positive, but then again that is not denuclearization either. Thanks, Alexandra.

BRIGGS: OK, "Tonight Show" host, Jimmy Fallon expressing regret over that episode where he tussled Donald Trump's hair before the election. The comedian telling the "Hollywood Reporter," quote, "I did not do it to normalize him." He described how people ganged up on him following the September 2016 show.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FALLON: It definitely was a down time. It is tough for morale. There's 300 people who work here. People talking about ganging up on you. Gang mentality. It was insane. People you wouldn't expect.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You are a sensitive guy.

FALLON: You go, all right. We get it. I heard you. You made me feel bad. Now what? Are you happy? I'm depressed. You want to push me more? What do you want me to do? You want me to kill myself? What will make you happy? Get over it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KOSINSKI: We were saying how hard it is that we are still talking about this. The president responding with this tweet, "Jimmy Fallon is now whimpering to all that he did, the famous hair show with me where he seriously messed up my hair, and that he would have now done it differently because he is said to have, quote, "humanized me."

He is taking heat. He called and said, monster ratings. Be a man Jimmy. Fallon hitting back at the president in turn tweeting, "In honor of the president's tweet, I'll be making a donation to Rises in his name. That's a refugee and immigrant center for education and legal services. BRIGGS: Two stories that really tell us where we are. Sarah Sanders getting kicked out of a restaurant and the political voices of opposition? Interesting times.

KOSINSKI: It is only Monday and it is not even 6:00 a.m. yet.

BRIGGS: World Cup intensifying. Ronaldo, the beautiful, scorer, and in action. England on a roll, Captain Kane putting on a clinic over the weekend. Andy Scholes has the latest in the "Bleacher Report."

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[05:23:46]

BRIGGS: It's a big drama at the World Cup. England putting on a show against Panama.

KOSINSKI: Andy Scholes has more in this morning's bleacher report. Good morning. I wish I had seen any of the World Cup.

BRIGGS: It has been outstanding.

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Even though we're not in it, it is the best World Cup I have seen in my lifetime. Watching the England and Panama game was rather frustrating. As you said, U.S. not in the World Cup this year. Panama is the team that is taking our place.

It looked like they belonged on the same field with England. Harry Kane with a hat trick. He buried two penalties in the first half. The game was 5-0 at halftime. England won 6-1. That one goal was huge for Panama. It was the first world cup goal ever. Check out the Panama fans going nuts when they scored it. They were acting like they won the World Cup. They were getting blown out in this game by England.

Ronaldo of Portugal is back on the pitch this afternoon taking on Iran. Ronaldo is fantastic. Portugal needs to win or tie the game to move on. Every team is now in the final game of the group stage which means this week we get four games a day instead of three. The action gets started later on this morning at 10:00 a.m. eastern.

[05:25:13] Here is something you won't see at the World Cup in Russia. A kangaroo invading the pitch. This happened at a women's semi pro game in Australia. Playing goalie during halftime. Panama could have used this guy yesterday. He was doing the job well.

Finally, Lebron James' 13-year-old son, Bronnie, playing the basketball event in Miami. He nearly dunked on this fast break in the slam online video. Lebron's reaction to his son trying to dunk. It was priceless. Lebron posted on Instagram, surprised not only me, but everyone in the gym.

Guys, this is a big week for Lebron. He has to let the Cavs know by Friday if he opts out of the final year of his contract. Could be a sign on what he will do in his free agency. Of course, Lakers remain the favorite for him.

BRIGGS: Where do you think he is going?

SCHOLES: The Los Angeles Lakers.

BRIGGS: They will get Kawai from San Antonio?

SCHOLES: They will hold steadfast in the belief they would only trade him to the eastern conference. I think Lakers have to have a new plan, Paul George and Lebron.

BRIGGS: A daily Lebron stories out of control. Andy Scholes, thank you, my friend.

KOSINSKI: The Trump administration has a plan to reunite families separated at the border, but it is not an instant fix. Now the president wants to send immigrants home without due process.

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