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Protests to Denounce Immigration Policies; Reuniting Families Separated at the Border; James Goes to Lakers. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired July 2, 2018 - 08:30   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[08:31:39] JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Hundreds of thousands of protesters taking to the streets across the country over the weekend to protest the Trump administration's immigration policies. Some 2,000 plus children still remain separated from their parents, separated by the U.S. government.

Our Dianne Gallagher live in McAllen, Texas, with much more.

Dianne.

DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, and, John, we think it's still some 2,000. The truth is, we haven't had an update on the exact number of children who were separated from their parents at the border under the Trump administration's zero tolerance policy since Tuesday. So almost a week since we've heard any sort of update there.

Now, on that same day, Tuesday, a judge ordered that they had 30 days to reunite all of those separated children. And if they were age five and under, they had 14 days. So, as of tomorrow, we are halfway through that deadline.

I wish I could tell you how the government is coming along with that and complying with that deadline, but the truth is, we just don't know. We have asked daily for these updates. We are not receiving them. Again, those children were separated from their parents.

Now, I've toured three different facilities talking to HHS officials on the ground. They tell me, we have a way to track every one of these kids. We know where they are. We are working to reunite them with their parents. We have a process here. Don't worry.

But in talking to advocates, lawyers and the parents themselves, they're not telling that same story. They're saying it's convoluted, it is confusing and they're not getting answers. And if they do hear from their children, they aren't given any sort of timeline on when they're going to be reunited.

Now, you couple that with the fact that before the zero tolerance policy was widespread announced, a Department of Justice attorney said in court to a judge that essentially this is exactly how it was designed to be, that (INAUDIBLE) were supposed to be struggling, their kids sprawled out across the nation. That it's operating how it was apparently designed.

So we're still asking for answers. But, John, Alisyn, I don't know how many we're going to have.

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh.

Dianne, please, please update us as soon as you get any update from officials there.

So joining us now to discuss all of this, we have CNN political commentators Ana Navarro and Jason Miller, who was senior communications adviser for the Trump campaign.

Great to have both of you.

Jason, do you have confidence that the federal government can and knows how and has a process to reunite these 2,000 families, these young children with their parents?

JASON MILLER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I do. And those children should be reunited with their parents as soon as possible. I think it's -- this is where I think things got off track, both as a combination of the 1997 Flores settlement, I think also DHS wasn't ready to go with implementing the zero tolerance policy, and then also I think Capitol Hill really needed to act to make sure that we had the right number of judges and the other resources that were available to go and implement this policy.

But as we look at the overall -- the actual policy here of the zero tolerance policy at the border, this is something that 63 percent of Americans support. We're a sovereign nation and --

CAMEROTA: Yes, but I don't want to look at the policy yet, Jason. Hold on one second.

MILLER: Hold on. But that's -- but Americans support a zero tolerance policy.

CAMEROTA: I don't want to -- you're switching -- no, no, I -- my question to you, Jason, was about the process of reuniting them. OK, so I understand, we can get into a policy discussion in a second, but what gives you confidence that the federal government -- given that they did this, as you've just pointed out, in such an incompetent manner, how do you know they can reunite these parents and kids?

MILLER: Because I think President Trump has sent a pretty strong signal. I think also the courts have sent a pretty strong signal that this needs to be done.

[08:35:05] CAMEROTA: How are they going to do it?

MILLER: And so --

CAMEROTA: They -- they -- there's no tracking device, as far as we know. They're not giving us real numbers. What makes you think that they know where the parents are still? What makes you think that an 18-month-old child can tell a federal official who his parents are?

MILLER: Well, for the exact mechanics you're going to need to have someone from DHS and HHS in here to explain that.

CAMEROTA: But you're saying you have confidence and I don't know where your confidence comes from.

MILLER: What I'm saying -- yes, I have confidence because I think everyone knows the importance here and knows the stakes and I think that people want to see the children reunited with their parents. I mean this is, again, overwhelmingly Americans want to see children kept together with their parents while they're going through this process.

CAMEROTA: Yes.

MILLER: And, again, this goes back to the bottom line is when these families are coming in here, we need to have the mechanism so they're staying together --

CAMEROTA: Yes.

MILLER: As they're being processed and then returned back to the country that they came from.

CAMEROTA: OK. Yes.

MILLER: I mean because if they're coming here and they want to seek asylum, we have places for them to go to request legal request for asylum and they shouldn't be --

CAMEROTA: That's right. And, guess what, Jason, many of them were doing that. Many of them were going through the actual protocol and process and they were still separated from their parents. So it --

MILLER: Well, no, no, no. If you're -- if you're coming here legally and you're legally requesting asylum --

CAMEROTA: Yes.

MILLER: Then you're not being -- not being split apart from your parents.

CAMEROTA: Yes, you are. And I'm sorry to have to tell you --

MILLER: That's -- that's inaccurate.

CAMEROTA: I understand, Jason --

MILLER: That's -- that's inaccurate. You're not being -- if you're coming legally --

CAMEROTA: Here's the -- today, here's the "L.A. Times" reporting on this. They have sent reporters out to the border to figure this out. The practice of separating families appears to have begun accelerating last year, long before zero tolerance was announced in the spring. Among these cases, according to records and interviews, are many that happen at ports of entry. Court filings describe numerous cases in recent months in which families were separated after presenting themselves at a port of entry to ask for asylum.

That is the legal process, Jason, and they were still operated.

MILLER: Well, I'm going to have to dispute that report based on what I've heard from folks within the administration, from other reporting that's out there, saying that the policy is, if you're going to a legal port of entry --

CAMEROTA: Yes.

MILLER: Legally, and you're requesting asylum --

CAMEROTA: Yes.

MILLER: That parents and their children are not separated.

CAMEROTA: I get it, but it sounds like that's happening.

MILLER: So that -- that -- that report -- well, that report is an outlier from other reports that I've seen.

CAMEROTA: OK.

All right, Ana, your thoughts?

ANA NAVARRO, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Look, I just don't even know how you can trust anything that this administration says or does, particularly when it comes to immigration. You have got a president that if anybody says is sending strong signals, I would say, well, you must be a fortune teller because reading the tea leaves on the stuff that Donald Trump says makes no sense.

You have a secretary of DHS who, you know, days before the executive order, the unnecessary sham executive order to undo separation was signed, was tweeting out there is no separation policy, period. Well, girlfriend lied, period.

So, you know, through this debacle that has been this entire family separation process, the one thing that has been revealed is that this government, this administration, is incompetent. And in the event that you didn't know it before, you know it by certainly now they lie. They lie, they lie, they lie, they lie pathologically, they lie with impunity, they lie constantly, they lie one time right after the other, like if they hadn't said anything before.

Look, I think the only thing here that we could keep doing is keep the issue in the headlines, keep the issue in the news.

I think one of the things they're counting on is what's happened so often, right, since Trump became president, where Americans have attention deficit disorder when it comes to news just because there's so many things thrown at us one -- one day after the other.

CAMEROTA: Yes.

NAVARRO: They are counting on us losing interest and focusing attention or something else, some other shiny object coming through, whether it's Melania's jacket or whatever you, you name it.

CAMEROTA: Yes, but, I mean, listen, Ana, I hear you. I mean but there are big things coming, like a Supreme Court vacancy.

NAVARRO: So we have that to stay focused on here. But we want answers.

CAMEROTA: I completely hear you, but these aren't just shiny objects. This news cycle is so hyper charged that of course we're turning our attention away to turn -- to turn towards the Supreme Court vacancy.

NAVARRO: Exactly.

CAMEROTA: But, Jason, this is a mess.

MILLER: Well, and to that point --

CAMEROTA: I mean we can't -- we can't turn our attention away from these 2,000 families. This is a mess. I mean imagine, Jason, not being able to know where your children are or see them again.

MILLER: No, that would be absolutely terrible. And I think it's also terrible that parents are putting their children in this position where they haul them 1,000 miles across the desert --

CAMEROTA: And do you know why they do that?

MILLER: They're dealing with drug traffickers and human traffickers. And most of --

CAMEROTA: And why do you think that they're making that -- that perilous journey? the vast majority are economic refugees.

MILLER: The vast majority -- the vast majority are economic refugees. That's the vast majority.

CAMEROTA: And how do you know that?

MILLER: But we have -- because studies have showed it --

CAMEROTA: Jason, as you know, there's all sorts of gang violence --

MILLER: And we've -- we've seen the numbers. But -- but, again -- but here's -- but --

CAMEROTA: There's all sorts of things that they confront. I mean crushing poverty.

MILLER: Right. And that's -- yes, and that's why -- and thank you for making my point for me, that's why we have to maintain our border. That's why 60 percent of Americans support a wall. And they believe that we need to have that wall there to keep out the drug traffickers and the human traffickers. We need to have increased security. And when we talk about --

CAMEROTA: Right, but we're not talking about them. We're talking about those seeking asylum, not keeping out the drug traffickers. We're talking about people seeing asylum.

[08:40:00] MILLER: Well, it's -- hold on. But there -- but you have -- you have mules and you have people who are bringing kids that aren't their own children. This is all -- you can't go and separate it out. And this is why the president has been advocating for a comprehensive policy.

CAMEROTA: But yes you can, Jason.

MILLER: And his four point policy has support of 64 percent of the people.

CAMEROTA: Yes. Right.

MILLER: And that's the thing that we're -- that we're glossing over, is that we need to have a comprehensive -- that --

CAMEROTA: Nobody wants -- nobody wants drug traffickers to come in, but we're talking about what to do about people seeing asylum because they're fleeing the drug violence.

MILLER: So, let me tell you what we can't do. Let me tell you what we can't do is go back to the catch and release program where when folks come in and they're -- they're detained, then release them into the country and just keep our fingers crossed and hope that maybe they get picked up somewhere.

CAMEROTA: Yes, I understand. I get you. I just think that it sounds -- I mean, look, as you say, it just sounds like the policy was not well thought out before this happened and now we're in this pickle.

NAVARRO: Look --

CAMEROTA: Last word, Ana.

MILLER: Well, the policy was right. It wasn't ready to be implemented as far as all that.

NAVARRO: Look, I think -- I think this --

MILLER: And -- and, but, it's -- but it's people supporting the policy.

NAVARRO: First of all, the --

CAMEROTA: The call to separate families was not right, Jason.

MILLER: People support this policy overwhelmingly.

CAMEROTA: Yes, but not the policy to separate children from their parents. They don't support that.

MILLER: The policy is a zero tolerance policy at the border. People overwhelmingly support it. They just do. Look at the numbers.

CAMEROTA: Yes, but you're -- you're talking about something different. We're talking about this policy about families that have not yet been reunited. And I don't see the evidence. I don't know why you have confidence, because I don't see the evidence.

We just had Dianne Gallagher talk about how there doesn't seem to be any process for reuniting them. The clock is ticking.

MILLER: It's -- 500 children have already been reunited with their parents. The court made very clear the timetable for the rest of the children to be reunited with their parents. And then what we have to do, just as the president was calling for, is lets past this four pillared immigration plan --

CAMEROTA: Yes.

MILLER: Which is supportive --

CAMEROTA: Got it.

MILLER: And let's just let the crazy Democratic rhetoric of abolishing ICE --

CAMEROTA: OK.

MILLER: And opening the borders --

CAMEROTA: Jason, we've got to go.

MILLER: Let's not let that interfere with the debate.

CAMEROTA: With getting kids back with their parents.

Ana, I owe you a lot of time. I'm sorry we ran out the clock here. But thank you both.

NAVARRO: Yes, this was -- this was an amusing one.

CAMEROTA: All right, Ana Navarro, Jason Miller, thank you very much.

BERMAN: All right, a big day in the trade wars. Canada strikes back at the tariffs that President Trump has implemented. It's on.

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[08:45:48] CAMEROTA: Canada retaliating against President Trump's tariffs on steel and aluminum by slapping its own penalties on $13 billion worth of American exports, including tariffs of 25 percent on some 40 U.S. steel products and 10 percent on items like, listen to this, John Avlon, maple syrup, coffee beans and strawberry jam. How will they live without that?

BERMAN: Their war starts over jam tariffs.

JOHN AVLON, CNN ANCHOR: Personal. Personal. BERMAN: One of France's notorious criminals has escaped from prison again. The second time in five years. Redoine Faid broke out Sunday. Authorities say armed men hijacked a helicopter --

CAMEROTA: What?

BERMAN: Forced the pilot to fly to the prison where he was held. Faid was flown to a location near Paris, driven away in an unidentified vehicle. This is crazy.

AVLON: Yes.

BERMAN: He was serving 25 years for his role in a failed 2010 robbery that resulted in the death of a police officer.

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh.

AVLON: Coming soon to a screen near you.

CAMEROTA: For sure.

Business is booming for 12-year-old Reggie Fields after a neighbor called police on him for mowing the wrong yard. OK, Reggie runs a lawn cutting service in the suburbs of Cleveland and he was cutting Lucille Holt's grass last week when police pulled up. Lucille's neighbors called because Reggie accidentally mowed a part of their property and they were mad?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LUCILLE HOLT, NEIGHBOR: People are, you know, in-boxing me, like, how can I get in touch with these children? Where are they at? I've got property that I even want these kids to, you know, to cut their grass.

REGGIE FIELDS, 12-YEAR-OLD ENTREPRENEUR: Just give me a call. I will be there on time.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAMEROTA: He has the right entrepreneurial attitude. Lucille posted a live video of the incident on FaceBook and got close to half a million views. All of the publicity has landed her son about 20 new clients.

BERMAN: He has excellent technique.

AVLON: (INAUDIBLE).

BERMAN: I can tell you, he's got excellent technique when he's doing that.

CAMEROTA: Even though he went into the neighbor's yard?

BERMAN: Well, I mean, that's a mistake.

CAMEROTA: That was --

BERMAN: The technique, he was mowing is beautifully, it was the wrong yard.

CAMEROTA: OK. Got it.

BERMAN: He was doing it so well he was going to do more yards.

AVLON: Give him a doughnut or a lemonade or something. My God. Love it.

CAMEROTA: That's right. (INAUDIBLE).

BERMAN: All right, he's in Cleveland. I'm sure the big news that he's concerned about this morning, LeBron James leaving, going to Los Angeles. One of the biggest stars in all of sports making a move. We'll talk about the implications, next.

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[08:52:06] BERMAN: All right, perhaps the biggest news overnight, LeBron James going to Los Angeles, leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers, going to join the Lakers, for the low, low price of $154 million.

Joining me now to discuss, CNN sports analyst, "USA Today" columnist Christine Brennan.

Christine, thanks so much for being with us.

I'll talk about the basketball side of this in a second, but I think LeBron James now transcends basketball. He's one of the biggest stars, one of the biggest personalities in our country. So when you see something like this, he's leaving his hometown, he's done it before, but leaving his hometown, going to Los Angeles, what does this mean to you?

CHRISTINE BRENNAN, CNN SPORTS ANALYST: I agree with you completely, John. I think all sports these days are part of our culture and LeBron might be the biggest of those stars. Certainly one of the biggest.

And he -- he, obviously, was able to take Cleveland to new heights, not just with one basketball title back two years ago, but also just the feeling of the city and the culture and then moving to Miami and that whole story.

He's really been a part of our life and our culture now. People who don't watch the NBA, John, who don't care about basketball or sports, they know LeBron. They know what he's meant to a community. They've followed his every step. I mean this kid is -- he was a kid in the teenager cover of "Sports Illustrated," growing up with us. We have grown up with him as well.

And so, absolutely, I think anything he does is very big news.

BERMAN: It is interesting that at this stage of his career he wants to go to Los Angeles. And, yes, it may be because of the basketball opportunities the Lakers offer. But to me it feels like he's going to Los Angeles because it's one of the media hubs of the world and perhaps he wants a bigger platform for basketball and more. BRENNAN: I agree. You know, he watched Kobe Bryant win an Oscar, and

maybe he'd like to answer that as well. I think so. And it makes sense. I mean I know people in Cleveland -- I'm from northern Ohio, as you know.

BERMAN: Yes.

BRENNAN: I know people are sad and feel bad. Thankfully not as bad as eight years ago. But, you know what, for LeBron, at this time in his career, 33 years old, has two houses in L.A., the family lives there during the summer and it's kind of home for them, so he made that decision as well.

But, absolutely, the opportunities for him are there and the Lakers have been down, as we know, and now he has that chance to have that basketball side. But the Hollywood side, it's undeniable and any of us who look at this would say, we're crazy if we don't, you know, throw that into the mix as part of his -- his decision.

BERMAN: I recommend the film "Trainwreck" where he has a role and he's fantastic. He actually is a terrific actor. He made me laugh many times.

You noted that this departure didn't make you as sad as the first one. You know, 2010, when he went to take his talents to South Beach, I remember actually standing outside the interview here he made that announcement and what a media spectacle. He made it. He created that frenzy. You know, I think was derided for it, perhaps appropriately, after.

This time he announced it in a very simple news release put out at 8:00. What does it tell you about his growth maybe as a person?

BRENNAN: Well, yes, he's learned. He's learned his lessons. That was probably the worst thing he's done, which says a lot, that decision, the widely panned ESPN special. It was just a disaster. I'm taking my talents to South Beach. It's really the only discordant note in his career, which is remarkable. And so he learned from that. And even four years ago, when it was "Sports Illustrated," a big splash there, now it's just a tweet and a statement. That's exactly the way it should be. I think LeBron understands that people don't want to have this play over again in that same, big way. This was smaller and I think much better.

[08:55:28] BERMAN: Are the Lakers better than the Warriors, Christine?

BRENNAN: No, they are not. Not at all. I think that this is going to be a project for a couple of years. Some young guys there. LeBron needs to build -- get a team around him. But I think it's going to be fun for him to not have the pressure of going to his ninth straight NBA final.

BERMAN: Right.

BRENNAN: I don't think he's going to go there this year. Your Celtics, I'm sure, though, will be there. BERMAN: No. Exactly. The real answer is the Celtics are going to win

the championship.

BRENNAN: Right.

BERMAN: Christine Brennan, great to have you with us. Thanks so much.

BRENNAN: Thank you, John.

BERMAN: CNN "NEWSROOM" with Erica Hill picks up after this quick break.

CAMEROTA: Not the Orlando Blooms?

BERMAN: Not the Orlando Blooms.

AVLON: And not the New York Knicks.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[09:00:08] ERICA HILL, CNN ANCHOR: Good Monday morning. I'm Eric Hill. Poppy has the day off.