Return to Transcripts main page


Trump To Rouhani: Never Threaten The U.S. Again; Trump Fumes Over Pace Of North Korea Talks; Pyongyang Pressuring U.S. To Lift Sanctions; Trump To Iran's President: Never Threaten The U.S. Again; Trump: Russia Interference: "All A Big Hoax"; JPMorgan Chase CEO: "Torturing" Mexico Is Dead Wrong. Aired 5-5:30a ET

Aired July 23, 2018 - 05:00   ET



CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: President Trump says further threats from Tehran will bring severe consequences and the secretary of state compares Iran's leadership to the mafia.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't think they did anything wrong. I think they went to the court. They got the judges to approve it.


DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: Republicans refuting the claim that newly released documents prove his campaign was spied on. The president now undoing a week of rebuilding support for the intel community.

ROMANS: And a driver for Uber and Lyft is off the road after live streaming passengers. It turns out, though, you know, he wasn't breaking the law. We have reports from London, Jerusalem, Hongkong and New York. Privacy, is there such a thing as privacy? No.

BRIGGS: No longer.

ROMANS: Good morning. Welcome to EARLY START. I'm Christine Romans.

BRIGGS: Hi, everybody. I'm Dave Briggs. Monday, July 23rd, 5 a.m. in the east. We start with some breaking news, tensions between the United States and Iran escalating dramatically overnight. It all started early Sunday when Iranian President Rouhani cautioned President Trump about pursuing hostile policies. Rouhani said, quote, "America should know that peace with Iran is the mother of all peace, and war with Iran is the mother of all wars."

ROMANS: Last night via tweet, President Trump warning Rouhani in all caps, "Never ever threaten the United States again or you will suffer consequences the likes of which few throughout history have suffered before. We are no longer a country that will stand for your demented words of violence and deaths. Be cautious."

CNN's Nick Paton Walsh is live from London this Monday morning. An all caps warning to the Iranians, Nick. NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We got to bear in mind, the Middle East is a place where all caps means something real. Once again, we wake up on a Monday morning with a completely different focus of where the Trump foreign policy actually is going.

Now how did we get to this? You mentioned yourself the statements from Hassan Rouhani. One of which referring to how it was unwise for the U.S. kind of pull the lion's tail, so to speak.

That in turn seems to be reaction to the bid by the United States to try to tighten sanctions against Iran. Remember they pulled out of the nuclear agreement. The European allies didn't, and they are trying to continue trade. The U.S. is trying to stop oil trade anything it can with Iran right now.

Increasing the economic and military to some degree pressure as well. The problem really, though, is that they seem to be laboring under the belief that there is some sort of liberal new Iranian government in a box that will replace this currently comparatively moderate government of Hassan Rouhani in the event of this economic pressure continuous to ratchet up and unseats them.

Here is what Mike Pompeo had to say in California just yesterday about the nature of the current Iranian government.


MIKE POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE: The bitter irony of the economic situation in Iran is that regime uses this same time to line its own pockets while its people cry out for jobs and reform and for opportunity. The Iran economy is going great, but only if you are a politically connected member of the elite.


WALSH: Now, obviously, he went on to refer to $95 billion slush fund used by the Revolutionary Guard and the ayatollahs to fund various interest globally. You have to remember that Iran is always sort of been split between that hardline and momentum currently the more moderate Iranian government Hassan Rouhani.

As I said, they are not likely to suddenly be replaced by anything other than a more hardline set of officials. So, a complicated task here where the U.S. seems to think more pressure you put, the more likely you are to break something.

It isn't necessarily sure what comes next. You have to remember too how useful, though, this renewed focus is on Iran and the top headlines when Donald Trump is struggling to distract people from the Russia investigation and his summit with President Putin in Helsinki. Back to you.

ROMANS: All right. Nick Paton Walsh for us in London. Thank you, Nick. BRIGGS: It's just under six weeks since President Trump declared North Korea is no longer a nuclear threat. But a U.S. official tells CNN the president has privately fumed about the slow pace of denuclearization.

For the latest, let's bring in CNN's Will Ripley live in Hongkong. Will, good morning.

WILL RIPLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Dave, these developments were surprising to almost nobody who actually follows the Korean Peninsula and looks at history. We know that North Koreans are very shrewd negotiators.

We've been saying for months before and the weeks after the Singapore summit that the North Korean definition of denuclearization likely vastly different from what the U.S. wanted, which was full denuclearization and full transparency in a matter of months.

Whereas the North Koreans view it as a very slow drawn out step by step process. They already feel according to a source that I spoke with overnight, a source very close to the North Korea side of these negotiations that they have done enough.

North Korea says they haven't launch a missile or test a nuclear device since November. There could possibly be repatriating the remains of Korean War veterans in the coming days since South Korea crossed them over the DMZ.

And the North Koreans even said that they destroyed their nuclear test site even though that's been disputed by some experts. Now, they want something concrete from the United States.

They want sanctions relief right now and they also want a formal end of the Korean war. A peace treaty that they fee would guarantee the survival of Kim Jong-un's government.

[05:05:06] The problem is that the United States has said repeatedly they are not giving any concessions until North Korea finishes giving up its nuclear weapons. If they continue to dig in their heels, my source says the North Koreans are not afraid to walk away from the negotiations, the nuclear negotiations.

They are emboldened by the fact that even though things aren't going so well with the U.S., things are going very well right now between the North Koreans and their traditional allies, China and Russia -- Dave.

BRIGGS: Uncomfortable times. Will Ripley live for us in Hongkong. Thank you. We should note Lindsay Graham speaking to the president Sunday said North Korea is playing the same old game with you they played with every other president.

ROMANS: All right. Joining us this morning, CNN political analyst, Julian Zelizer, historian and professor at Princeton University. The president fuming about the North Korean progress, but the president is also fuming about Iran. I think that is really the big story here this morning.

A one, two, punch really because you have the secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, the day earlier also with tough words about Iran. Let's listen to what he said.


POMPEO: The regime's revolution at goals and willingness to commit violent acts haven't produced anyone to lead Iran than can be remotely called a moderate or a statesman. Some believed that President Rouhani (inaudible) that that bill. The truth is they are polished front men for the ayatollahs' international con artistry. Their nuclear did not make them moderates, they made them wolfs in sheep's clothing.


ROMANS: So, about 90 minutes after that speech, the president is tweeting in all caps. Is this the right response to Iran at this moment? I mean, Rouhani started it, I guess, but the U.S. picked it up and escalated.

JULIAN ZELIZER, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, I mean, this is pretty consistent. Iran has been a focus of the Trump administration's policy. Tensions have been mounting. The nuclear deal is effectively over for the United States. I think what is shocking most probably or most troubling is the all caps attempt to handle foreign policy. This is very dangerous, very explosive right now. People are nervous about not having any kind of traditional foreign policy.

BRIGGS: It has been clear for some time that the administration would like to see regime change there. This is the president that people elected. They want a president who reacts strongly and talks tough to Iran. Doesn't it conflict with what happened in Helsinki when you do react strong and tough with Iran given what just happened standing alongside Vladimir Putin?

ZELIZER: It took attention away from Helsinki as well. But it's as if there are two extremes and he can't see anything in the middle. You either don't say anything and almost support Putin and Russia or here you have an all caps rhetorical war. There has to be something in the middle for presidential leadership because these situations are too volatile and can cost too much.

ROMANS: These are the kinds of reactions, though, that simply inflame the opponents of President Trump as well. You know, this is, to your point, this is why he was elected. He was elected not to be the statesman that we are familiar with of the 20th Century and early 21st Century.

ZELIZER: If you look at the recent poll by the "Wall Street Journal" and NBC, he has his approval rating of 88 percent with the Republicans. So, if you are a Democrat and you don't think this is working, you are wrong. He is looking at the poll numbers. He is not worried about continuing with these policies.

BRIGGS: He is increasingly emboldened by those very numbers.

BRIGGS: But, you know, it is interesting. I spoke with Jamie Diamond, who is the CEO of JPMorgan Chase, one of the most powerful, you know, businessman in the world. I talked to him about the trade path of the president and whether he could be undermining all of the success in the economy. Listen to what he said.


JAMIE DIMON, CEO, JPMORGAN CHASE: If you do another $200 billion of tariffs and this national security thing about cars, I think that you are getting close to having reversing some of the benefits we have seen in the economy.


ROMANS: This eventually going to chip away at the president's support do you think?

ZELIZER: It could obviously if soybean farmers are suffering as a result of these tariffs. It could start to undercut support in those areas, but not right now. There is part of the voting population that supports and likes him. There is a disconnect between the facts on the ground and who he is. Right now, he is counting on that and the numbers are strong enough that these are long-term concerns.

ROMANS: That European car decision could be coming soon. Wednesday is a meeting with the European Union president and you know --

BRIGGS: I want to ask about Marco Rubio with some real strong push back on the president on his allegations of spying on the campaign. Julian Zelizer, thanks.

Breaking overnight, at least 14 people shot in the central town of Toronto. Police say one of the victims has died and another, a young girl, is in critical condition. Officials say the shooter is dead.

Witnesses transported by bus so investigators can interview them. One witness standing near the scene told CTV that he heard about 20 shots and the sound of the weapon being reloaded repeatedly.

[05:10:10] Ahead, as President Trump rips up trade tensions with our closest allies, one of the world's most powerful CEO thinks that's bad policy.


DIMON: To be torturing Mexico this way in my opinion is dead wrong and it should be fixed.


BRIGGS: More of Christine Romans' exclusive interview with JPMorgan Chase's CEO Jamie Dimon next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) ROMANS: President Trump is right back where he started a week ago. He is questioning whether Russia interfered in the U.S. election. He spent much of last week trying to convince everyone, he believed the intel after he stood alongside Vladimir Putin and questioned it.

But now the president again scoffing at the conclusion of the U.S. intelligence, "So, President Obama knew about Russia before the election. Why didn't he do something about it? Why didn't he tell our campaign? Because it was all a big hoax."

[05:15:04] BRIGGS: For the record, the president was briefed about the potential Russian interference in August of 2016. Even before his tweet last night, GOP leaders were raising concerns.


REPRESENTATIVE TREY GOWDY (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: The evidence is overwhelming. The president either needs to rely on the people that he has chosen to advise him, or those advisers need to reevaluate whether or not they can serve in this administration, but the disconnect cannot continue.

SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: He has changed his mind four times this week. You did not collude with the Russians. I have not seen the evidence, but Mr. President, they meddled in the elections.


BRIGGS: Senator Lindsey Graham calling on President Trump to oppose new heavy-handed sanctions on Russia before Vladimir Putin visits Washington.

ROMANS: President Trump escalating trade threats against key American allies. One of the world's most powerful CEOs thinks it is just bad policy. I spoke to the head of JPMorgan Chase, Jamie Dimon, in an exclusive interview at the bank's Entrepreneurs' of Color Fund Event in Chicago. Now he said the president is right to target China on trade, but not about much else.


DIMON: The way to look at trade, the president has raised serious issues that are pretty accurate around China that need to be fixed. We want NAFTA done. I think Mexico is a wonderful neighbor. We want NAFTA done.

To be torturing Mexico this way is dead wrong in my opinion and should be fixed. We thought that what the president should do is work with Mexico and Canada and do TPP and work with our European allies and Japanese allies and go to China with a common front. Not against them.

This is the way the modern world should deal with trade particularly around IP and state enterprises, and all these various issues. You know, now we have kind of a little bit of a trade war or skirmish everyone defines with four allies and China.

So, if somehow the president and his team is doing a great job, maybe we would have a great outcome. But I would remind folks the president's team has already said there would be no retaliation. They've already have been wrong.

If you do another $200 billion of tariffs and national security about cars, I think that you are getting pretty close to having reversing some of the benefits that we've seen in the economy.

ROMANS: Trade advisers to the president in the White House tell me with the great confidence that the economy is so strong that this is exactly the time from them to be addressing these issues with China and Europe and bringing back steel jobs. Do you buy that? It is so strong?

DIMON: I don't buy that. I'd be skeptic. They're argument after the fact. I think you should the right thing in trade whether (inaudible).


ROMANS: He said he expects tit-for-tat retaliation from Beijing that it could be measured. He said the president should be ticked off at his trade team for engaging in all these fronts at the same time on trade. China should be the focus, not all other these other trade skirmishes.

BRIGGS: Wouldn't staying in TPP would have --

ROMANS: That's what he thinks. He thinks you need to take on China as a united front. That is what TPP was for and blunt against Chinese influence and the president didn't realize that.

BRIGGS: Tiger Woods in the lead halfway through the final round of the British open. Could he hang on to win the first major in a decade? Andy Scholes with the highs and lows in "The Bleacher Report" next.



BRIGGS: Tiger Woods falls short of the British open after holding a lead in the final round.

ROMANS: So fun to watch him. Andy Scholes has more in this morning's "Bleacher Report." Hey, Andy.

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: The golf world was in a freak-out mode for a moment yesterday. For the first time since 2009 Tiger had the lead at the final round of a major. All he had to do was hold on for nine more holes, but it all started fell apart on 11.

His drive for the gallery. It hit this fan, who is actually filming the approach on his cell phone. He dropped his phone when the ball hit him. Tiger would come over to him and give him a ball and signed glove. That's a good tradeoff.

Tiger ended up double bogeyed that hole and a bogey on 12 as well. He ended up tied for sixth which was the best finish at a major since 2013. He was upset after with the missed opportunity, but also happy he got to share the moments with his kids.


TIGER WOODS, 14-TIME MAJOR CHAMPION: I'm ticked off at myself for sure. I had a chance on the back nine to do something and I didn't do it. I told them I tried. You know, I said hopefully you are proud of your pops for trying as hard as I did. It was emotional. They gave me some pretty significant hugs there and I know that they know how much this championship means to me and how much it feels good to be back playing again.


SCHOLES: Tiger Woods wasn't the only one that struggled down the stretch. Jordan Spieth failed to card a birdie the entire day. The others faltering and Francesco Molinari steady as can be. He went the final 37 holes without a bogey or worse. The first ever Italian to win a major championship.

The sports world mourning the loss of Tony Sparano. According to ESPN, Sparano had complained about chest pains on Thursday. He underwent tests at a hospital on Friday and released. He was found unresponsive by his wife Sunday morning.

Sparano was the head coach of the Miami Dolphins and the interim head coach of the Oakland Raiders. He was the currently the offense line coach for the Minnesota Vikings. Tony Sparano was just 56 years old.

[05:25:04] Guys, it's definitely going to be an emotional start to training camp for the Minnesota Vikings and teams around the NFL because Sparano had been around the league for a while and touched a lot of players and shocking news that he is now not with us.

BRIGGS: Remarkable what he did with the Dolphins team which was 1-15 one year, 11-5 the next and won the division. A terribly sad story, though. Andy Scholes, thank you, my friend.

ROMANS: All right. It's 25 minutes past the hour. Consequences the likes of which few throughout history have ever suffered. That warning in all caps from the president to Iran's president. Why? What happens next.