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EARLY START

3D Gun Plans Website Suspends Downloads; Escalating Trade War With China; Manafort Trial Underway; Military Ceremony for U.S. Soldiers' Remains. Aired 4:30-5a ET

Aired August 1, 2018 - 04:30   ET

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


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[04:30:39] LAURA JARRETT, CNN ANCHOR: A federal judge says instructions to make 3d guns cannot go online as planned, but how long will untraceable guns stay out of dangerous hands?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: China and others -- remember this -- have targeted our farmers. Not good. Not nice.

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DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: President Trump defending his trade policies with China. Now word overnight the next round of tariffs could escalate dramatically.

JARRETT: Shifting blame. Heated statements and a $15,000 coat. A fast start to Paul Manafort's trial on financial crimes.

Welcome back to EARLY START. I'm Laura Jarrett.

BRIGGS: I'm Dave Briggs. Four-thirty-one Eastern Time.

Chilling words on this Website, Laura, Defense Distributed. The age of the downloadable gun begins. This is a serious story, probably not getting enough attention.

JARRETT: Absolutely.

BRIGGS: A federal judge blocking a government settlement that would allow plans for 3D guns to be downloaded online. The ruling coming just hours before those plans were set to publish with growing concerns about people being able to make their own untraceable plastic weapons, even AR-15-style assault rifles. The judge's block is temporary, though. It puts a hold on the settlement a gun rights group and the government reached in June that would make it legal to post the plans on the Internet.

JARRETT: The founder of the gun rights group Defense Distributed says his company's site is going dark until he can further review the judge's order.

Before the ruling came down, he spoke to CNN's Laurie Segall about concerns publishing plans could endanger the public.

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LAURIE SEGALL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The democratization of guns online, giving people the ability to 3D print their own guns would make it feasible for felons, minors, mentally ill, to have access to firearms. Are you worried about those repercussions?

CODY WILSON, FOUNDER, DEFENSE DISTRIBUTED: No, I don't believe that access to information is ever tremendously negative or a bad thing. I know that people can use information for bad things, but this isn't a justification to, what, stop a publisher from speaking?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: Nearly a dozen states sued to stop the firm from publishing the printable plans. President Trump even weighing in, tweeting: 3D plastic guns being sold to the public doesn't seem to make much sense.

The White House later confirmed it supports the existing law.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

HOGAN GIDLEY, WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: The president is committed to the safety and security of all Americans. He considers this his highest responsibility. The administration supports a nearly two-decade-old law and will continue to look at all options available to us.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

JARRETT: Now, it's worth noting, the State Department cleared the way for the settlement that would have allowed the printable 3D gun plans. The NRA releasing a statement saying it supports existing laws that make it illegal to manufacture, sell, and possess an undetectable firearm. But just last month, NRA's spokeswoman, Dana Loesch, defended exactly the opposite viewpoint.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DANA LOESCH, NRA SPOKESPERSON: What Democrats call, quote/unquote, ghost guns and the rest of us simply call freedom and innovation, 3D- printed guns.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

JARRETT: Under the terms of the settlement, 3D printed gun plans were not supposed to be available online until today, but more than 1,000 people have already downloaded the plans to print an AR-15-style semiautomatic assault rifle.

BRIGGS: The Trump administration's pending China tariffs could be significantly higher than first announced. A source familiar with discussions has confirmed that tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods could be raised from 10 percent to 25 percent. They would cover things like fruits and vegetables, handbags, refrigerators, rain jackets, even baseball gloves.

China's foreign ministry moments ago saying blackmail and pressure by the U.S. will never work and promising to take countermeasures, if need. The U.S. has already imposed 25 percent tariffs on Chinese goods worth $34 billion. China responded in kind. The president addressed the trade war at a rally last night in Tampa.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: China and others -- remember this -- have targeted our farmers. Not good. Not nice. And you know what our farmers are saying? It's OK. We can take it. These are incredible people. We can take it.

Now, we're going to open up markets. We're going to do it the way it should be. And all of this stuff, you're going to make it back and it's going to be made back faster than anybody would know, but we haven't been treated right.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[04:35:08] BRIGGS: President Trump says the tariff tit for tat will eventually open up markets. That may be the end game, but so far, it's been destabilizing well-established markets.

As a stop gap, the administration announced a week ago, it's preparing a $12 billion emergency aid package for farmers caught up in the trade war. The move has been panned by many Republicans for being a short- term fix. Markets in Asia were down slightly overnight.

JARRETT: Today will be Paul Manafort's first full day in front of a jury. One thing became very clear yesterday in opening statements. President Trump's former campaign chairman is ready to pin the blame for his alleged financial crimes on his former top aide. CNN is told the president followed the developments in the trial from Air Force One.

CNN's Jessica Schneider has more from Washington.

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JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Dave and Laura, it was a fiery first day in the Paul Manafort trial. Lawyers for both sides, they gave the jury their opening statements. Prosecutors called Manafort a shrewd liar and said he's made millions of dollars in secret income from what they called a, quote, cash spigot, that came from working with his golden goose in Ukraine, the pro-Putin president, Viktor Yanukovych.

Of course, that is all the basis of these charges in Virginia, that Manafort hid the money he made from foreign lobbying in 37 foreign bank accounts. Prosecutors say he never paid taxes on any of that money, and then they say he lived an extravagant lifestyle, complete with multiple homes, and even, get this, a $15,000 jacket made of ostrich. On the flip side, Manafort's attorneys will be mounting a dual

defense. First, they say it was the Russian oligarchs Manafort worked for who actually demanded he pay into those secret accounts. And secondly, Manafort's lawyers are trying to shift the blame to Rick Gates, saying it was Gates who, of course, is Manafort's former deputy, who's already pleaded guilty to other charges. They say Gates was really the one stealing and embezzling the money.

So, of course, it was a lot packed into this first day of the trial with the White House continuing to distance itself from Paul Manafort and pointing out that these charges have nothing to do with Manafort's time as campaign chairman for President Trump -- Dave and Laura.

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BRIGGS: OK, Jessica, thanks.

President Trump putting a little physical distance between himself and the Mueller investigation by campaigning for Republican candidates in Florida last night. Things got tense when his supporters fiercely heckled CNN's Jim Acosta.

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BRIGGS: The president and his people did nothing to calm the crowd. The president's son, Eric, retweeted the video, which was retweeted by the president of the United States.

Jim Acosta has more from Tampa.

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JIM ACOSTA, CNN CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Dave and Laura, at a rally here in Florida, the president steered clear of the subject of the Russia investigation, instead returning to one of his favorite topics on the campaign trail, immigration, telling his supporters here that there should be voter ID laws across the country. At one point remarking that you need an ID to buy groceries.

Here's what he had to say.

TRUMP: Only American citizens should vote in American elections, which is why the time has come for voter ID, like everything else.

You know, if you go out and you want to buy groceries, you need a picture on a card. You need ID. You go out and you want to buy anything, you need ID, and you need your picture.

ACOSTA: The president also lashed out at the news media, referring to reporters in the back of the room as fake news, even talking about what he considers to be fake polls. But at the same time, the president talked up a poll that shows he's one of the most popular Republican presidents in recent history -- Dave and Laura.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

JARRETT: Jim, thanks for that report.

Immigration officials have agreed to hold off briefly on deporting a group of immigrant families just reunited after being separated at the border. An attorney for the families said last night the government will stay removals through Friday. It's a small win as advocates try to buy more time for immigrants they say have not had the full opportunity to make their case for asylum in the U.S.

BRIGGS: Earlier at a hearing on Capitol Hill, an HHS official heading up the reunifications told lawmakers he had warned over the past year about the dangers of family separation, but the head of ICE's enforcement division had these glowing words about detention centers where the government is housing children.

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MATTHEW ALBENCE, ICE EXECUTIVE ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF ENFORCEMENT: I think the best way to describe them is to be more like a summer camp. These individuals have access to 24/7 food and water. They have educational opportunities. They have recreational opportunities, both structured as well as unstructured.

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[04:40:02] BRIGGS: Essentially echoing the words of Fox News host Laura Ingraham.

Officials at the hearing had few details to offer about plans going forward for reunifying the hundreds of children still separated from their parents.

JARRETT: Facebook removing a network of suspected Russian-linked accounts it says were organizing political events in the U.S. It's the most extensive effort to interfere in American politics the social network has publicly disclosed ahead of the midterms. The social media giant trying to prevent a repeat of 2016 when accounts connected to a Kremlin-linked troll group posed as Americans on its platform.

BRIGGS: At a cybersecurity summit in New York, Vice President Mike Pence blamed the Obama administration for the attack.

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MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: In a very real sense, we inherited a cyber crisis. The last administration all but neglected cybersecurity, even though the digital threats were growing more numerous and more dangerous by the day.

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BRIGGS: Asked by CNN to respond to the Facebook reports, a Russian official said she hoped materials would be presented to the Russian side.

JARRETT: Identification could take years, but this morning, remains believed to be Americans from the Korean War are being flown back home. We're live at the ceremony in South Korea.

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[04:45:31] JARRETT: A military ceremony for the remains of what are believed to be U.S. soldiers killed in the Korean War taking place this morning at an air base in South Korea. The remains handed over last week by North Korea will be flown to Hawaii for forensic examination. Officials say that process could take a very long time.

CNN's Paula Hancocks joins us live from Osan Air Base in South Korea.

Paula, bring us up to speed.

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDEN: Well, Laura, this ceremony is under way at this point. I'm here at the runway of Osan Air Base, where two C-17 planes are waiting to take those remains on to Hawaii, and they will be greeted by Vice President Mike Pence there as they touch down on U.S. soil. They'll be there for identification.

Now, at this point, there is a service member playing the bagpipes, leading six vans, each of them carrying one casket to those C-17 planes, and they will be received with full honors by many standing by here, U.S. service members, some of the families as well from Osan Air Base coming to pay their respects to these service members. Now, there will also be a flyover. Four F-16s will be flying over what is known as the missing man formation, which is always do you know at memorial ceremonies like this.

And certainly, what we've been hearing at this point over the past couple of hours from officials is that they do believe that many of these remains are likely American. These remains that were given back by North Korea. They say there's no reason to believe that they are not from the Korean War.

This is very initial analysis, of course, just a couple of days they have been able to look at those remains. But officials have been positive about this, saying that they are hopeful this is the start of being able to take more Americans home, and the U.S. military, the United Nations command say this is incredibly important, to make sure that no one is left behind, that they continue the search for prisoners of war, for missing in action around the world, and make sure that they can bring them home.

And, of course, there were 17 nations that were part of that United Nations command that were fighting during the Korean War. So, it is possible that there are other nationalities that are represented within those remains as well.

One dog tag, we're told, was found, and the family has been identified already. The family will be given that dog tag in coming weeks, we're told by officials. So, certainly, for at least one American family, there is some sense of closure, and it is so important for these families from the Korean War, 65 years since that war finished. The flyover happening right now.

Four f-16s you saw flying over there as a mark of respect. JARRETT: What a scene there.

HANCOCKS: This is -- this is known as the missing man formation. Flyovers are often associated with celebrations, but this is the one that is used for memorials. It is important to show the respect to those remains that are coming back.

And certainly, this is a very somber, a very symbolic day for the U.S. military here and also for the United Nations command. As I say, it's not just the U.S. military that may be represented within these remains, but 17 countries were part of the combat forces in the Korean War. Many more nations around the world had support staff, had medical staff that were within this.

So, certainly, this is a very important day for many families who lost loved ones.

JARRETT: Paula, thank you so much for that reporting. A somber day indeed.

BRIGGS: Coming up, Tesla has struggled to sell cars, but hey, surfboards are no problem.

CNNMoney is next.

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[04:54:28] JARRETT: A health alert issued for some salads and wraps. The U.S. Department of Agriculture warns certain beef, pork, and poultry salads and wraps sold by Kroger, Trader Joe's, and Walgreens may be contaminated with parasites. If consumed, it can cause intestinal illness that can last a few days or even months.

The food distributor received notification from their lettuce supplier that chopped romaine was being recalled. All of the sell by dates have passed.

BRIGGS: If you're having an affair, you should think twice. A North Carolina judge just ordered Francisco Huizar to pay nearly $9 million to Keith King whose wife Huizar had been seeing for 16 months.

[04:55:09] State law allows lawsuits for what's called alienation of affection. King's lawyer says his company lost revenue and an employee, his wife. King knew something was wrong when he noticed inappropriate texts between the pair. Huizar's attorney claims her client did not break up the marriage because it was already on the rocks. Huizar plans to appeal.

JARRETT: A superhuman feat accomplished by 10-year-old Clark Kent Apuada. Over the weekend, the swimming phenom shattered Michael Phelps' longest standing record set in 1995. Clark Kent beat Phelps' time in the 100-meter butterfly by more than a second. Not only is he fast, he's wise.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) CLARK KENT APUADA: Always have fun and never give up on your dreams, no matter what anybody says. And yes, that was one of my dreams, to beat Michael Phelps' record, since I was 7.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

JARRETT: Phelps went on to win 28 Olympic medals. Clark Kent has been swimming competitively for just four years. Love that story.

BRIGGS: Love that young man.

It was the best of times for the Washington Nationals and the worst of times for the New York Mets. The Nats routed the Mets, and that's being kind, 25-4 last night. They scored seven first-inning runs and just kept pouring it on, pounding out 26 hits. The Nationals' 25 runs are a franchise record, dating back to their days as the Montreal Expos.

Things got so bad for the Mets, they used infielder Jose Reyes as a relief pitcher, and it wasn't pretty, either. For the not-so-amazins, it was the worst loss in the team's 57-year history. Ouch!

Four-fifty-six and a check on CNNMoney this morning.

Global markets and stocks futures were mixed overnight. Stocks finished July on an up note. The Dow had its best month since January, adding nearly 5 percent.

Strong quarterly results from Apple could help boost the market today. The company sold about the same number of iPhones as a year ago, but sales and profits soared as it made more money from higher priced devices. Apple's report comes as investors are increasingly jittery about tech stocks.

Last week, Facebook and Twitter tanked after their results disappointed Wall Street. But apple's shares rose after hours. They're up 16 percent so far this year. Apple is now within striking distance of becoming the first U.S. company ever to be worth $1 trillion. CEO Tim cook also announced Apple will be coming to CVS and 7-Eleven later this year.

Low unemployment and a tight job market are finally translating into better pay. Last month, American workers received the biggest raise in nearly a decade. Wages and salaries rose 2.8 percent from a year ago. That's the biggest gain since September of 2008. The number suggests employers are finally feeling the pressure to raise wages so they can attract and keep workers. And we could see more evidence on Friday, when the Labor Department is scheduled to release the July jobs report.

Another food safety scare is tanking Chipotle shares. The stock fell nearly 7 percent yesterday after at least two people reported getting sick at a location in Ohio. Chipotle tells CNN it shut down the restaurant temporarily as a precaution. Says it's working with local health officials. Chipotle has suffered a series of health scares in recent years. The most serious was an E. Coli outbreak in 2015 that sickened 60 customers in 14 states.

Surf's up at Tesla. The struggling electric car manufacturing dipping a toe into the surfboard business in what could be an effort to keep the company afloat. Tesla offered 200 limited edition surfboards for sale at $1,500 a pop on Saturday. They sold out by Sunday and are now fetching up to 5 grand apiece on eBay.

Tesla says its surfboard features the same high-quality matte and gloss finishes used on its cars. The company has experienced financial turmoil lately, even asking refunds from suppliers in order to help turn a profit.

JARRETT: They look pretty great.

BRIGGS: They look very cool. I can't surf, but I'll take one.

JARRETT: EARLY START continues right now.

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JARRETT: A federal judge says instructions to make 3D guns cannot go online as planned, but how long will untraceable guns stay out of dangerous hands?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: China and others -- remember this -- have targeted our farmers. Not good. Not nice.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: President Trump defending his trade policies with China. Now word overnight the next round of tariffs could escalate dramatically.

JARRETT: Shifting blame. Heated statements and a $15,000 coat. A fast start to Paul Manafort's trial on financial crimes.

Good morning, and welcome to EARLY START. I'm Laura Jarrett, in for Christine Romans.

BRIGGS: Good to see you, my friend. I'm Dave Briggs, Wednesday, August 1st already, if you can believe it. Five a.m. in the East.