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EARLY START

Five Shot Dead at Capital Gazette Newspaper; Annapolis Shooting Suspect in Custody; Trump Ignores Questions About Newspaper Shooting; Deputy AG and FBI Director Clash with House Republicans; GOP Lawmakers Demand DOJ Documents; Trump Casts Doubt on Election Meddling in Tweet; Details of Trump-Putin Summit Announced; White House Push for New Supreme Court Justice; Trump Administration Slams Family Reunification Order; Mike Pence: Exodus of Illegal Migrants Must End; Wall Street Rises on Tech, Bank Stocks; Chipotle CEO Tries to Win Back Customers; New Hope in Search for Youth Soccer Team in Thailand; Major Heat-Wave Move East of the United States; Oregon State Wins College World Series. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired June 29, 2018 - 05:30   ET

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


[05:30:00] (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SELENE SAN FELICE, STAFF WRITER, CAPITAL GAZETTE: And there I was, sitting under a desk texting my parents, telling them that I love them.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DAVE BRIGGS, CO-HOST, EARLY START: Targeted attack on a Maryland newspaper. The alleged gunman had a personal vendetta against the paper.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. JIM JORDAN (R), OHIO : Did you threaten to subpoena their calls and e-mails?

ROD ROSENSTEIN, DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL, UNITED STATES: No, sir, and there is no way to subpoena phone calls.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I mean, I'm just saying.

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CO-HOST, EARLY START: Deputy Attorney General beating back GOP efforts to undermine the Russia probe. Rod Rosenstein debunking claim after claim by the Republicans.

BRIGGS: And the White House fast-tracking the search for a Supreme Court nominee. The president personally meeting with senators key to approving the next justice, including several Democrat senators, one who he attacked the prior evening in North Dakota, complicating matters for Democrats. They're in a tough spot --

ROMANS: Oh, yes --

BRIGGS: Here, welcome back to EARLY START, I'm Dave Briggs.

ROMANS: And I'm Christine Romans, nice to see you all this morning. Thirty one minutes past the hour, let's begin though with this morning's front page in Annapolis, Maryland, it says it all.

A gunman's rampage at the "Capital Gazette" killed five people, the deadliest day for American journalists since 9/11. Officials releasing the names of the employees killed; Wendi Winters who worked on special publications, Gerald Fischman; editor of the editorial page, John McNamara; a staff writer who covers sports, Rebecca Smith, the sales assistant and Robert Hiaasen; the papers assistant editor and brother of famous Miami novelist Carl Hiaasen.

We encourage you to go to "Capital Gazette's" website for more on each of these victims. One survivor, "Capital Gazette" staff writer Selene San Felice describing her terrifying experience to Cnn.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SAN FELICE: I was working at my desk when I heard the shots. And it took a couple of them for me to realize what was happening. And I looked at Anthony, the intern, and I said I'm getting out of here and I grabbed my purse and I went to the back door which I was only a couple of steps away from and it was locked.

What happened here was very calculated. I reported him on Pulse when Pulse happened. I went to school in Florida and I remember being so upset hearing about the victims who were texting their families and there I was sitting under a desk texting my parents, telling them that I love them.

And I just -- I just don't know what I want right now. Our whole lives has been shattered. And so thanks for your prayers, but I couldn't give a -- about them if there's nothing else.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: In cities across the country, law enforcement stepped up security around major news organization as a precaution, officials say the shooter's intent was clear.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WILLIAM KRAMPF, ACTING CHIEF OF POLICE, ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY: This was a targeted attack on the "Capital Gazette". He entered the building with a shotgun and he looked for his victims as he walked through the lower level.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: Overnight, police searched the suspect's home and we're learning more about a possible motive. In 2011, the paper ran a story about his guilty plea to criminally harassing an old high school classmate. He filed two lawsuits over the story, both dismissed.

The suspect is due in court this morning. The "Capital Gazette" reporting overnight he has been charged with five counts of first- degree murder. Cnn's Brian Todd has more from Annapolis.

BRIAN TODD, CNN WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Dave and Christine, the man who allegedly opened fire on the "Capital Gazette Newspaper" on Thursday afternoon has been identified by multiple law enforcement sources to Cnn as Jarrod Warren Ramos, in his late 30s.

According to our sources, Mr. Ramos did have a complaint with the newspaper that he filed a defamation claim against the "Capital Gazette" back in 2012, but that claim was dismissed.

Police say there were social media threats directed at the newspaper of a general nature, not directed at any particular person that they know of at the moment, but there were threats via social media directed at the "Capital Gazette", some of them coming as recently as Thursday morning.

We have dramatic accounts also of -- from witnesses and from survivors of the police response and of the gunman's movements when he came into the building. According to Phil Davis(ph); who is an employee of the newspaper who survived this, the gunman came in, shot his way through the glass doors, came into a small space there in the newsroom and started opening fire.

[05:35:00] Mr. Davis(ph) said he could hear him reloading as Mr. Davis was hiding under his desk as were several other people and described it as a terrifying experience. We're told by police that the police response was incredibly rapid. That they got to the scene within about 60 seconds, not later than 90 seconds from when the shooting started.

One witness told Cnn she was on lockdown at a distance not too far away from the shooting. She said she saw police running in, some of them in their civilian clothes, pulling their Kevlar bulletproof vests on as they ran into the building, police credited with basically interrupting this attack.

A very tragic incident here on Thursday afternoon, five people dead, at least two people wounded. The shooter we're told has not been cooperating with police, we're told by one source that they identified him from facial recognition software, at least initially. Dave, Christine.

BRIGGS: All right, Brian Todd there in Annapolis, thank you.

ROMANS: The front page of the "Daily News"; "who is the enemy now". Obviously a reference to the president who has called --

BRIGGS: Yes --

ROMANS: The press the enemy of the people. The president was peppered with reporters' questions about the Annapolis newspaper shooting as he arrived back at the White House.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Any words about the southern Annapolis shooting yesterday?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, (INAUDIBLE) --

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, after the shooting in Annapolis. The Annapolis shooting sir.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Really, the president put out this tweet saying he had been briefed on the shooting and that his thoughts and prayers were with the victims and their families and thanking the first responders on the scene. The first lady called the shooting tragic and evil.

The simmering feud between the president's supporters and the Department of Justice playing out for all to see on "Capitol Hill", deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Chris Wray fending off attacks from House Republicans in a fiery five-hour hearing.

BRIGGS: Congressman Trey Gowdy took nearly two and a half years to complete the Benghazi investigation, but listen to him rip into Rosenstein about the length of the Russia investigation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. TREY GOWDY (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: If you have evidence of wrongdoing by any member of the Trump campaign, present it to the damn grand jury. If you have evidence that this president acted inappropriately, present it to the American people. Whatever you got, finish it the hell up.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: No questions from Trey Gowdy during his entire time there on Capitol Hill. Joining us this morning, Cnn political analyst Julian Zelizer; historian and professor at Princeton University. We do have questions for you, but first, more sound that's from Jim Jordan going after Rod Rosenstein. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JORDAN: I want to know why you won't give us what we've asked for.

ROSENSTEIN: Sir, I certainly hope that your colleagues are not under that impression. That is not accurate, sir, and --

JORDAN: It is accurate, we have caught you hiding information --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Chairman, can we allow the witness to answer. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Chairman, point of order, we can go to Mr.

Jordan's press conference and listen to him, but we came here to hear from the witness.

ROSENSTEIN: Your statement that I am personally keeping information from you, trying to conceal information --

JORDAN: You're the boss Mr. Rosenstein.

ROSENSTEIN: That's correct, and my job is to make sure that we respond to your concerns -- we have, sir.

JORDAN: Mr. Rosenstein, did you threaten staffers on the House Intelligence Committee? Media reports indicate you did.

ROSENSTEIN: Media reports are mistaken.

JORDAN: Sometimes. But this is what they said, "having the nation's number one law enforcement officer threaten to subpoena your calls and e-mails is down-right chilling." Did you threaten to subpoena their calls and e-mails.

ROSENSTEIN: No, sir, and there's no way to subpoena phone calls.

JORDAN: Well, I mean, I'm just saying.

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: Jim Jordan did not intend the hilarity there --

ROMANS: The laugh line.

BRIGGS: Yes, the laugh line. They've given -- the house Republicans have given Rod Rosenstein one week to turn over documents related to the Hillary Clinton e-mail investigation and Trump-Russia. Is this about documents or something else?

JULIAN ZELIZER, PROFESSOR OF HISTORY & PUBLIC AFFAIRS & CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Now, look, the president and the Republicans have tried to undermine the integrity and legitimacy of the Justice Department, of Robert Mueller, of the entire investigation.

And this is just a piece of that that plays out on television and on Capitol Hill. It's about discrediting Mueller, discrediting President Trump's Justice Department.

BRIGGS: So much of it is so political and at the core of this is the issue of Russia --

ZELIZER: Yes --

BRIGGS: Meddling in the American election. And yesterday, the president tweeted that, oh, no, the Russians say that they didn't do any meddling. The president essentially being a spokesperson for the Kremlin here.

Russia continues to say they had nothing to do with meddling in our election, where is the DNC server, et cetera. Hillary, Russia, Hillary, Russia, this is what the "Washington Post" said at an editorial either. "Mr. Trump has lost touch with essential U.S. interests or there is some other explanation for his kowtowing that is yet unknown."

That's just real risk that the president could go to meet with NATO leaders and they have this July 16th meeting with President Putin in Helsinki, and he is going to be warmer to America's adversary, strategic adversary President Putin than he is with America's long- time allies. This is really causing some concern in Europe.

[05:40:00] ZELIZER: Yes, I think what the president is missing, that ultimately if he did want some kind of diplomatic break-through with Russia, if he does want some kind of historic moment, it's important that his allies have confidence in the United States.

It's important that we all have confidence that our democratic system is working. That actually would help him create some kind of opportunity with Russia, some kind of diplomatic break-through. If he doesn't do all of that, he enters in the weakest position possible.

BRIGGS: You just can't help but wonder why when the intelligence community has universally agreed Russia meddled, his own Secretary of State has said that, John Bolton who is there right now called it a true act of war, Russian meddling in our election.

Clearly, this is a PR win for Putin. What else is it? Does it embolden Syria, what's the impact?

ZELIZER: Sure, it emboldens efforts to do this again. If there is no kind of push-back from the president of the United States and even worse, if the president seems to just deny that this happened, why wouldn't another adversary try to do it again.

ROMANS: He is a contrarian by nature, you know, on tariffs, all these smart people telling -- look, starting with the tariffs is not a good idea Mr. President, and he says no, I think it is. You know, a bunch of smart people tell him, Russians --

ZELIZER: Yes --

ROMANS: Are meddling in the elections, he says no, I think they weren't. You know, this is almost a personality trait --

(CROSSTALK)

ZELIZER: It's reminiscent of the calling the war games, saying --

ROMANS: Right --

ZELIZER: The war games rather than --

ROMANS: Right -- ZELIZER: Military drills is --

ROMANS: Right --

ZELIZER: Is out there with North Korea.

ROMANS: Bye Julian, nice to see you.

BRIGGS: All right, thanks Julian --

ZELIZER: Thank you --

ROMANS: Have a wonderful weekend.

BRIGGS: All right, coming up, a White House visit for six senators, all of them key to confirming the next Supreme Court Justice. The nominee could be in place before Justice Kennedy even retires.

[05:45:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROMANS: With the Supreme Court battle brewing, the White House launches a full-court press to replace the retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy. The president plans to have a nominee by July 9th, weeks before Kennedy is scheduled to leave at the end of July.

President Trump had key senators over at the White House, Thursday, they included three red states Democrats, West Virginia's Joe Manchin, Indiana's Joe Donnelly and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, all of them facing tough re-election fights this year.

BRIGGS: Their states won overwhelmingly for Trump at 2016 and a vote against his Supreme Court nominee could end up costing them crucial votes. The president also met with Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley and GOP Senators Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins, they're also being watched closely as the White House vets Supreme Court nominees.

The White House criticizing a federal judge's ruling requiring quick reunifications of immigrant families separated at the border. A spokeswoman for President Trump telling reporters on Air Force One, the ruling endangers national security.

The administration's hard-line immigration policies not deterring everyone, as you can see, Cnn's Nick Valencia was on a ride-along with Customs as they caught a group of migrants crossing the Rio Grande.

ROMANS: Vice President Mike Pence visiting Central America, home to many of those fleeing migrants after meeting with the leaders of Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, Pence delivered this clear message.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Among this flood of illegal migrants are human traffickers and violent gang members like MS-13, but most are making the journey seeking economic opportunity, driven by the misguided belief that they can ignore the laws of the United States and enter our nation without consequences. I say with great respect to the presidents gathered here, this exodus must end.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: As of Monday, there are 2,047 separated unaccompanied minors in the United States according to a map provided to Cnn by our U.S. government source, most are in Texas, Arizona, New York and Florida.

"NEW DAY" about 10 minutes away, John Berman joining us with a look ahead, and John, today at the editorial page of the "Capital Gazette" in Annapolis, Maryland, it just went public, it says quote, "this page is intentionally left blank to commemorate victims of Thursday's shootings at our office. We usually use these moments to have some fun, this is just not one of those days."

You'll visit what happened and what's at play here with one of the victim's brothers on "NEW DAY" today.

JOHN BERMAN, CO-HOST, NEW DAY: I was just looking at the editorial page as you were doing those news reads, Dave, and it got me, it hit me right in the gut. They left the editorial page blank in memory of those lost.

You know, they did put the paper out though. That is, I think the true message from the "Capital Gazette" this morning and the true message of what they stood for and stand for still. We're going to get this damn paper out.

They said, the "Capital Gazette" reporting on itself today, the day after an assault on journalism, the day after an assault on that paper. That paper is so integral to the community in Annapolis.

Part of putting that city forward, putting that city on its feet every day, and as you said, we're going to talk to people there, I'm going to speak to the mayor in an hour.

How is he doing? What does he think about this. The brother of one of the victims there, you know, five people, four journalists, a sales rep, these are people who chose to work inside of this community.

A sports editor, who would go to games, you know, 20 minutes away just so he could tell people the scores. You had people working on the local edition up the shore. I cannot tell you what papers like this mean to places like Annapolis.