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EARLY START

Russia Reaction Shows Gap Between Trump And His Top Administration Officials; Iran Begins Military Exercise In Persian Gulf; Apple Now Worth One Trillion Dollars. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired August 3, 2018 - 05:30   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:30:56] (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KIRSTJEN NIELSEN, SECRETARY, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY: Our democracy itself is in the crosshairs.

DAN COATS, DIRECTOR, U.S. NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: We acknowledge the threat. It is real.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're being hindered by the Russian hoax. It's a hoax.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: The president still dismissing the Russia investigation even after his own top officials blatantly warned Russia is still meddling in U.S. elections.

KAYLEE HARTUNG, CNN ANCHOR: The July jobs reports is due out this morning. Why unemployment is expected to tick down but wage growth remains stalled.

Welcome back to EARLY START. I'm Kaylee Hartung. I'm going to say one last time, it's Friday because that will make Dave Briggs happy.

BRIGGS: It does make me very happy. Five thirty-one eastern time.

Papa don't preach. We'll get into this in just a moment with a couple of guests on how Ivanka Trump might finally be speaking out against some things she cares about.

But we start this morning with this Russia meddling attack on our election systems.

If you listen to the president talk about it, then to his top intel officials, there's a bit of a disconnect here. The president ranting, once again, about the Russian hoax hours after his top intel officials called out the Kremlin for interfering in the upcoming 2018 midterms.

At a rally in Pennsylvania last night, the president touted the Helsinki summit with Putin while completely ignoring Russian attacks on Americans' democracy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We got along really well. By the way, that's a good thing, not a bad thing. That's a really good thing.

Now we're being hindered by the Russian hoax -- it's a hoax. Everybody said wow, that was great -- that was great.

A couple of hours later I started hearing these reports that they wanted me to walk up -- here's a podium here. They wanted me to walk up and go like this (shadowboxing).

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HARTUNG: Shadowboxing -- a hobby we did not know the president has.

BRIGGS: Yes.

HARTUNG: Hours earlier, key members of President Trump's national security team appeared in the White House briefing room to warn the country Russia's election interference in ongoing.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COATS: In regards to Russian involvement in the midterm elections, we continue to see a pervasive messaging campaign by Russia to try to weaken and divide the United States.

CHRISTOPHER WRAY, DIRECTOR, FBI: Russia attempted to interfere with the last election and continues to engage and malign influence operations to this day.

NIELSEN: Our democracy itself is in the crosshairs. Free and fair elections are the cornerstone of our democracy and it has become clear that they are the target of our adversaries who seek, as the DNI just said, to sow discord and undermine our way of life.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: DNI Coats added that he doesn't still fully understand what took place between Vladimir Putin and President Trump.

Joining us now to talk about all of this, senior politics writer and analyst Harry Enten. Good to see you, Harry.

HARRY ENTEN, SENIOR WRITER AND ANALYST, CNN POLITICS: Good morning.

BRIGGS: This is a serious national security and it was nice to see our intel chiefs make that a clear point that they are addressing it -- they are on it.

Though it's a serious national security issue, is it at all an issue in the midterms upcoming?

ENTEN: I don't really think so. I mean, obviously, if Russia were to hack our election system that would be a big deal --

BRIGGS: No doubt.

ENTEN: -- but voters don't seem to think of it as a big deal.

If you look at the most important issues -- for example, what you see is that Russia hacking is down right at the very bottom of the list. The economy, health care, gun policy -- you basically name it. This is from a CNN poll back in May.

But what we've seen throughout this Russia investigation is very steady numbers where people do not like what Donald Trump is doing, but at the same, they don't think it's very important.

So you have this back and forth and you hear all this bad news coming out about Russia but voters are kind of dismissing it and putting it into another corner.

HARTUNG: We fully expect President Trump to inject himself into these midterm races. We would be silly not to think that he would.

In an interview earlier this week with Sean Hannity, he said -- or was it with -- yes, Sean Hannity. He said six-seven days a week during the final two months of this campaign he will be on the road stumping for folks.

Karl Rove had an opinion about the impact he thinks that will have. Take a listen.

[05:35:00] (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KARL ROVE, FORMER WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY CHIEF OF STAFF: It's going to be smart in many contests for the president to sort of absent himself from the scene and let the candidates shine through.

So the people say if I like Trump, I'm going to vote for the person who stands with Trump. But if I'm not so hot on Trump, let me make a decision between the two people who are on the ballot.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HARTUNG: Harry, your reaction?

ENTEN: I mean, the president was last night in Pennsylvania with Lou Barletta and the president's approval rating is far below his disapproval rating in the Pennsylvania Senate race, and we know Lou Barletta is down by a lot. So I agree with Karl Rove in that particular race.

And a lot of House races where Trump's approval rating is below his disapproval rating it's definitely a smart idea.

But there are going to be some Senate races in North Dakota, West Virginia, Indiana where the president being on the campaign trail is going to be very helpful for those Senate candidates because Trump is still quite popular in those states.

BRIGGS: Lou Barletta, a guest on "NEW DAY" later this morning. The president will then head this weekend to Ohio, arguably the best indicator of where we're headed before the midterms. The president attempted to tweet about this 12th Congressional District race on Tuesday but mixed up candidates and deleted the tweet. But hence, the importance -- let's underscore that -- how crucial this race is on Tuesday and unexpectedly so.

Set the stage for us.

ENTEN: Yes. I mean, this is a congressional district that's been represented by Republicans since the early 80s. John Kasich represented it before the current representative Pat Tiberi decided that he was going to resign earlier in this cycle. And this is a district that Donald Trump won by double-digits.

But we've seen this continuously throughout this cycle in these special elections where you have these deeply Republican districts, right, and they seem to be going more towards Democrats.

And historically speaking, if you look back to the 1994 midterm, when you see the type of shift that we've been seeing in these special elections it tends to forecast very good news for the Democratic Party in this particular year.

BRIGGS: Is that similar to what we're seeing in Tennessee? The president won by 26 points there and it looks like Phil Bredesen has a legitimate shot there statewide or is that just a different race altogether because Bredesen can appeal in a lot of those moderate districts?

ENTEN: You know, Phil Bredesen is a very unique character, right?

BRIGGS: Yes.

ENTEN: He was a twice-elected governor in that state, a state that Donald Trump won by 26 percentage points back in 2016. But make no mistake, this is partially about Phil Bredesen being a good politician. But it's also partially about the national environment whereby Donald Trump is so unpopular that even in a deep-red state like Tennessee, the Democrats have a legit shot of winning.

HARTUNG: And first daughter and presidential adviser Ivanka Trump -- she's breaking from her father's rhetoric against the media. Ivanka said she does not agree with his characterization of the press as the enemy of the people.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

IVANKA TRUMP, WHITE HOUSE ADVISER: I've certainly received my fair share of reporting on me personally that I know not to be fully accurate. So I've had some -- I have some sensitivity around why people have concerns and gripe, especially when they sort of feel targeted.

But no, I do not feel that the media is the enemy of the people.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HARTUNG: Oliver Darcy joining us now. Oliver, Mike Allen asked a very simple question --

OLIVER DARCY, SENIOR MEDIA REPORTER, CNN MEDIA: Right.

HARTUNG: -- of Ivanka Trump there.

Do you think we're the enemy of the people? And her reaction initially was "sorry?" as if --

BRIGGS: Yes.

HARTUNG: -- she didn't hear the question. And then once he repeated she gave that answer.

What did you make of that exchange?

DARCY: It was really remarkable. It was almost like she was suggesting that the assertion that the press is the enemy of the people that she's never heard of that before. Like she's never looked at her father's Twitter account and seen him call the press the enemy of the people.

Or never watched a White House press briefing like we did yesterday where our own CNN's Jim Acosta asked her do you think the press is the enemy of the people and she refused to say that they're not.

So, Ivanka Trump's reaction was kind of baffling in that regard. She effectively said that -- or suggested at least that the question was ridiculous and backed her family to believe that the press is the enemy of the people.

BRIGGS: Ivanka also told Mike Allen that the separation of children from their parents at the border was the low point of the presidency. And I guess what I don't understand here is there's so much criticism towards Republican senators and congressmen for not speaking out.

Why isn't Ivanka Trump applauded for breaking with her father? She certainly wasn't applauded for it at home, we presume. Shouldn't she be applauded for showing some break here -- for showing that she is willing to stand up and have her own voice?

DARCY: I think a lot of people might be with you on that, right -- that she did break with her father, which is difficult in and of itself.

I think the other end of the spectrum will say what has she been doing though, other than when she's asked about it -- breaking with her father -- what has she been doing to actually him shift his policies?

I think that was one of the big criticisms of her yesterday with her -- the family separation thing. She said she's been really opposed to it. But what did she do when this was going on to really help her father?

And I think that was what people are saying is speaking out is one thing but --

BRIGGS: Well, sure, I understand that. But what we have seen from this presidency is there is no one who can really tell him what to do. He is a man who is trusting his gut right now, who is going with his every decision.

[05:40:10] And look, she's not the Department of Homeland Security. Like this is not -- the border is not her responsibility.

I don't know. It's a debate we could continue to have.

DARCY: No matter what she says I think that people are going to still criticize her over it.

BRIGGS: That is absolutely true.

DARCY: Right.

BRIGGS: Yes.

HARTUNG: And we saw President Trump put his own spin on Ivanka Trump's remarks --

DARCY: Yes.

HARTUNG: -- saying she's not wrong. It's the fake news, though, who is the enemy of the people.

Was that -- was that necessary? Do you think he took such an affront to her coming out against him that he felt the need to --

DARCY: Apparently, he felt the need to tweet something. It's a little ridiculous what he tweeted though, suggesting that there's a difference for him between the fake news and real journalists.

It's clear from his tweets and from the way he's engaged with the press that he'd use the fake news -- the fake news media as any outlet that at any time is somewhat critical of him. And so, I wouldn't ever put --

BRIGGS: Yes.

DARCY: -- CNN or "The New York Times" or "The Washington Post" or even "The Wall Street Journal" in that category. But the president, at times, has and he thinks those outlets are fake news.

BRIGGS: Like the National Anthem fight this is one he wants, he likes. Clearly, Bill Shine, who was a former television news executive, loves this as well because it's only ramped up under his watch.

And here's what Trump said last night in Pennsylvania about the media, once again.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Whatever happened to fair press? Whatever happened to honest reporting? They don't report it.

They only make up stories. But they can make anything bad because they are the fake, fake, disgusting news.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: It appears that it's only going to ramp up. Why do you figure, right now, he's ramping up this rhetoric?

DARCY: This is something that plays really, really well with his base. If you watch Fox News at any given time in prime time you will hear them refer to the media as the fake news media, the destroy Trump media, et cetera, et cetera.

So this is something that plays really well to his base and he's definitely trying to rally the base as he heads toward the midterms so it's not surprising that the president would come out and continue to bash it.

There's no clear person leading the Democratic Party, as well. And so, I think for him and for people who are in the Republican Party they look at the media as the enemy or as the opposition.

BRIGGS: It appears an added bonus undermining the Russia investigation. So if there is something that comes out don't believe what you hear, don't believe what you see --

DARCY: Exactly.

BRIGGS: -- don't believe what you read.

Oliver Darcy, thanks for being here. Appreciate it.

DARCY: Thank you.

HARTUNG: I went to a GOP unity rally in Georgia for the governor's race there. They were handing out yard signs "Fake News Media" with an X across them.

BRIGGS: Oh, wow.

HARTUNG: All the signs were gone --

BRIGGS: That's terrific.

HARTUNG: -- by the time that rally was over.

BRIGGS: Wonderful.

HARTUNG: Yes.

Well, Apple is now worth $1 trillion. We'll put that number into perspective and show you how it got there when we get a check on "CNN Money," next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [05:47:16] HARTUNG: Forty-seven minutes after the hour.

And, Iran is launching a major military exercise in the Persian Gulf. Tehran is likely to show its ability to shut down the oil flow through the Strait of Hormuz, a move with broad implications.

CNN's Nic Robertson joins us live from the Gulf of Oman near the Strait.

Nick, what are those broader implications?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Well, the broader implications are profiting (ph) off 20 percent of the world's oil supply. That's what passes through the Straits of Hormuz. That's what Iran's major military exercise is underway. Right now may be their ability to signal that.

We're told that they have dozens of smaller vessels involved in this at the beginning of this military exercises, being watched very closely in the region.

Nothing officially from the Iranians about this military exercise. Nothing officially from, let's say, the Emirates here who are very close to the Straits of Hormuz as well, but they have their strategic assets in place.

This port facility can pump oil to bypass the Straits of Hormuz. That's how critical this oil route is to the world. That is spare capacity to bypass it to get oil flowing through to the international markets.

But what are the Iranians trying to do at the moment? Signal their displeasure with Washington that sanctions are about to kick in again.

What the Iranians have said, coming right from the supreme leader to the commander of the forces doing these military exercises is if they cannot export their oil, they say, then no one can -- Kaylee.

HARTUNG: Nic Robertson, thank you so much.

BRIGGS: All right, good stuff there from Nic.

"NEW DAY" about 10 minutes away. Alisyn Camerota joining us this morning. Good morning to you, Ali.

A big show, including Lou Barletta, a Republican running there in Pennsylvania. The president there to stump for him last night. Let's see if he gets any bump from that, huh?

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Yes. I mean, at the moment, he's down in the polls -- or the latest polls.

BRIGGS: Yes, big.

CAMEROTA: He's down considerably in the polls. But when the president endorses somebody it carries a lot of weight. So maybe he will get a bump from that.

And then, of course, we're also going to get into how the president, once again, repeated his disbelief in the Russian interference investigation at the same time that his intel chiefs --

BRIGGS: Yes.

CAMEROTA: -- are trying to sound the alarm for the country so that everybody is on the lookout for all of this Russian interference on their own social media pages, et cetera. So we're going to talk about that disconnect.

And the good news is that's it's 5:49 in the east and David Gregory is now awake. I'm sure that people were concerned about that. It was touch and go for --

BRIGGS: Was it?

CAMEROTA: Yes, for a few hours there. But he is now awake and he is here, present in the building.

BRIGGS: Did he hit the snooze button?

CAMEROTA: You know how hard it is Dave when you're not used to doing this full-time.

[05:50:00] HARTUNG: Preach.

CAMEROTA: Yes.

BRIGGS: I'm used to doing this and it's awfully difficult when that 1:50 alarm goes off. What times does yours go off, Ali?

CAMEROTA: Mine goes off at 3:15.

BRIGGS: Three-fifteen. You get to sleep in.

HARTUNG: Oh, luxurious.

CAMEROTA: I know, it's luxurious, yes. And, David Gregory's went off at like -- I don't know -- 5:35, something like that.

BRIGGS: Attaboy, David Gregory. Get that man some coffee and --

CAMEROTA: Got it.

BRIGGS: -- we'll see you in about 10 minutes. Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Yes.

BRIGGS: All right, let's get a check on "CNN Money" this morning at 5:50 on Friday.

Stock futures ticking lower right now. The market finished mostly higher yesterday with tech stocks carrying the gains. Stock markets in Europe and Asia are mixed right now. Investors are awaiting the July jobs report due an hour before the opening bell. The forecast for 190,000 new jobs. The unemployment rate expected to tick down; wages forecast to hold steady.

Apple is the darling of Wall Street this morning. The stock popped three percent yesterday to cap off a historic mind-boggling run.

Apple is now the most valuable company in U.S. history, worth more than $1 trillion in market value. The stock is up 22 percent this year and more than 200 percent over the past five years. At the start of that span its market cap was below $500 billion.

Some perspective on that new trillion-dollar number. Only 16 countries in the world have a GDP of more than a trillion dollars. Or this -- the market cap for the four biggest banks in the United States -- add all four together and you get just over a trillion dollars in value.

The latest company to drop plastic straws, Shake Shack, and it plans to get rid of all of them in the first quarter of next year. The burger joint CEO mentioned the move on the company's earnings call.

It follows other big names ditching plastic straws that include Starbucks, Disney, and American Airlines. McDonald's also sampling with some alternatives.

Shake Shack's stock is up an incredible 48 percent this year, set to drop this morning, though. Investors don't like the company's outlook following its earnings report yesterday.

But still, Kaylee, that trillion-dollar number? I mean, look at it, just all the zeroes.

HARTUNG: All the zeroes.

BRIGGS: Twelve zeroes. If you invested in Apple a few years back you just sit back and --

HARTUNG: Enjoy --

BRIGGS: Sure.

HARTUNG: -- with your iPhone and your iPad and your Apple T.V. and all of your --

BRIGGS: Too bad Steve Jobs wasn't around to see that number.

HARTUNG: Right.

BRIGGS: What a brilliant man.

HARTUNG: Yes.

Well, "The New York Times" standing by a new hire despite a history of tweets criticized as racist. More when EARLY START returns. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:56:53] BRIGGS: The Trump administration believes the responsibility for finding hundreds of parents deported after being separated from their children should rest with immigrant advocates, not with the federal government.

Justice department lawyers saying the government would turn over whatever information it could on the parents who were deported but say the ACLU should quote "use their considerable resources to establish contact."

ACLU lawyers argue the Trump administration is trying to shirk its responsibility to reunite.

HARTUNG: The Trump administration calling for a freeze on emission standards through 2026. It would also revoke California's ability to set its own tougher standards which are followed by about a dozen states.

This marks a sharp reversal from the Obama administration which worked with California and the auto industry to set uniform national fuel economy standards.

And, "The New York Times" standing by its new hire despite rhetoric she's used on Twitter that's being blasted as racism. Sarah Jeong, who is Asian, has drawn scrutiny after old tweets she posted resurfaced.

One referred to "Dumbass (bleep) white people marking up the Internet with opinions like dogs pissing on fire hydrants."

Jeong will join the editorial board next month. The "Times" noted some of her tweets were in response to frequent online harassment.

Jeong also saying quote, "I engaged in what I thought of at the time as counter-trolling. I deeply regret that I mimicked the language of my harassers."

BRIGGS: EA Sports apologizing for editing Colin Kaepernick's name out of the soundtrack for it's "Madden 2019" game. In a video posted on Twitter, the part of Big Sean's verse that mentioned Kaepernick on rapper YG's "Big Bank" has been removed.

EA Sports often edits sensitive or vulgar content but the company admits it made an unfortunate mistake, saying "Members of our team misunderstood the fact that while we don't have rights to include Colin Kaepernick in the game, this doesn't affect soundtracks. We messed up and the edit should never have happened."

This episode clearly shows the National Anthem issue remains front and center as the NFL's preseason began last night.

Not protests but there was dancing. Lights out still.

Ray Lewis still bringing the energy. The Hall of Famer started the NFL preseason. It's good to have it back.

HARTUNG: It is.

BRIGGS: The protests, we shall see. They will return at some point.

HARTUNG: You know that they will. Just need to find an answer for how to deal with it.

BRIGGS: Yes.

HARTUNG: But in the meantime, thanks for joining us. I'm Kaylee Hartung. It's been a pleasure being with you and with you, Dave.

BRIGGS: Thanks for being here all week. Great to have you.

"NEW DAY" starts right now. Have a great weekend.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COATS: We continue to see a campaign by Russia to try to divide the United States.

TRUMP: Now, we're being hindered by the Russian hoax. It's a hoax.

REP. RUBEN GALLEGO (D), ARIZONA: We have a president that is not part of our deterrent package.

JOHN BOLTON, U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: President Putin said the first issue that President Trump raised was election meddling.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Paul Manafort's bookkeeper testified by 2016 he was flat broke.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Manafort saw a lot of money to be gained from Donald Trump.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We'll see how he reacts when Rick Gates takes the stand. He is going to be the smoking gun.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Alisyn Camerota and John Berman.

CAMEROTA: We have so much to talk about this morning.

Welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. This is NEW DAY. It's Monday, August third, 6:00 here in New York.

John Berman is off and David Gregory joins me here.

DAVID GREGORY, CNN ANCHOR: It's been fun all week.