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Remembering the legacy of United States Senator John McCain; Mass shooting in a video game tournament in Jacksonville, Florida; Pope Francis is being asked to resign over sexual abuse scandal. Aired 3-3:30a ET

Aired August 27, 2018 - 03:00   ET



GEORGE HOWELL, CNN HOST: The legacy of the U.S. Senator, John McCain on the world stage. Better known as the maverick, we look at his role and impact on U.S. Foreign policy.

ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN HOST: In Florida, a gunman opens fire in a crowded videogame tournament. What we are learning about the shooter and the investigation.

HOWELL: And friction within the Vatican. The pope refuses to address an archbishop's call for him to step down over the sexual abuse scandal.

CHURCH: Hello and welcome to our viewers joining us here in the United States and of course all around the world. I'm Rosemary Church.

HOWELL: And I'm George Howell, from CNN world headquarters in Atlanta. The news starts right now.

In the United States, a great deal of mourning. The loss of a political giants and an American war hero.

CHURCH: Senator John McCain died Saturday after a lengthy battle with brain cancer. His final moments was spent at his home in Arizona surrounded by his family.

HOWELL: Flags across the United States are flying at half staff in honor of Senator McCain. You see the White House here, the flag lowered, remembering him.

CHURCH: People will have several opportunities to pay respects to McCain throughout this week. CNN's Kyung Lah reports.

KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Senator John McCain remembered for being such a prominent national figure was Arizona's favorite son and it is here in his home state that the memorials will begin. They start on Wednesday. The flags here at the state capital have already been lowered and it is here at a private ceremony in the rotunda that the memorials will begin.

For six hours he will lie in state here at the Arizona State Capitol. The public will be able to come in to bid their farewells to their senator. On Thursday morning, there will be a public memorial service at a Phoenix Baptist church and then he departs for Washington. On Friday, the Senator will lie in state at the U.S. capitol rotunda.

On Saturday, a national memorial service at the National Cathedral. And then on Sunday, Senator McCain will be laid to rest at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis. It is there where he began his military life, his public service and where his body will find its final resting place. Kyung Lah, CNN, Phoenix, Arizona.

CHURCH: So, let's get some perspective on the legacy of John McCain. We are joined by Scott Lucas, professor of international politics at the University of Birmingham. Thank you so much for being with us.


CHURCH: So, with the passing of John McCain, America has lost a hero and a fearless politician who was never afraid to question his own party's stand on various issues. What does this mean for the country and who might fill that void?

LUCAS: So many great questions. Let me start for a moment with John McCain because I need to be honest with your viewers. I've got very mixed feelings about John McCain's policies that he pursued. I would disagree with many of them, both domestically and American foreign policy. I think there are a few things about John McCain that I note.

The first is that he did change his positions, and he changed positions not be a maverick, but because he thought it was right to change positions. Say for example, he opposed Barack Obama's Obamacare in 2010, but last year when the Trump administration tried to kill it off, he saved the program because he said there was nothing to replace it.

He was castigated by many Republicans, not just Trump for doing so. He used to be a supporter of the hardest (inaudible) anti-immigrat1ion measures for example in Arizona. But in 2013, he looked for a way forward with immigration reform, reaching out across the aisle with Democrats to try to pursue that, an issue that we're still battling with five years later.

And I think the second thing about John McCain is, he could be temperamental at times. He could be coarse in his language at times. He could be insensitive in comments about other countries at times, for example, about Iran or about the Middle East. You are almost universally hearing from colleagues or from journalists or from activists, that no matter what their political views, he treated with decency and respect.

And he wanted to hear from them. He wanted to hear from them even if they differed (ph) with them, to try to establish a dialogue on what could be done. And if there is something that America takes away from this, apart from commemorating both his strengths and his flaws, is that idea that we need to get back to that dialogue amongst all of us, not just politicians in the very near future. CHURCH: Right. Now, President Trump eventually sent out a tweet

offering his prayers and condolences to John McCain's family, but according to the "Washington Post," the president did this to avoid issuing an official White House statement praising john McCain as a hero.

[03:05:05] Why would Mr. Trump do that and what does it say about him and his leadership style?

LUCAS: Because Donald Trump despises John McCain. That is why he wouldn't utter his name even as he insulted him in the final weeks of his life for example, at campaign rallies. We can spend much time on why Trump despises John McCain. Personally, I think Trump is intimidated or was intimidated by McCain's intelligence, by his forthrightness. He hated the fact that John McCain was liked by so many people in the U.S. so he saw him as a rival.

That is why he said I don't like people who were captured and denigrated those five and a half years as a John McCain stunt as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam. Of course later on, Donald Trump just hated it when John McCain wouldn't follow Trump's line on all issues. McCain supported the Trump administration 85 percent of the time. But when he disagreed on healthcare, on immigration, then it became (inaudible) to Donald Trump.

You know, rather than focus on Donald Trump today or Donald Trump who last night tried to proclaim he was America's all-time favorite president because he's stung by the (inaudible), I would rather focus on McCain and I would rather focus on again, what we can learn from him while recognizing he was not perfect, because what we're going to need from politicians, from activist, from journalists, from all of us, is a way to repair the damage.

We're going to need from all of us a way forward, and we're going to need a way forward which is not based on insult or narcissism, but on an ability to work with us even if you think they might not exactly share your own views. Now, for at least today, Donald Trump is at the side of my thoughts. John McCain and others like him are at the center.

CHURCH: Scott Lucas, we thank you for your analysis and of course your perspective.

LUCAS: Thank you.

HOWELL: Now to the pope, wrapping up a weekend trip in Ireland and there, he asked for forgiveness for years of unchecked sexual abuse by members of the clergy.

CHURCH: Thousands of people gathered in Dublin's Phoenix Park on Sunday to see the pope say mass. He told the crowd, the church failed to provide abuse survivors with compassion, justice or the truth. But Pope Francis himself is facing claims from a former top Vatican official that he ignored allegations for years that a cardinal was abusing victims. HOWELLL: Let's get more on how the pope is responding to those claims

and the impact of his trip. CNN Vatican correspondent Delia Gallagher, live in Rome. Delia, the pope's apology though welcomed by many, the question now, do people feel that that approach, the words that he uttered, did it go far enough?

DELIA GALLAGHER, CNN VATICAN CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know George, throughout the weekend in Ireland we kept hearing over and over again that people didn't want to hear just words, they wanted action. They certainly got words fro the pope, words of sorrow and regret and asking for forgiveness as you mentioned, but the action part remains yet to be seen for many people.

And I think especially now, given the new wave of the Pennsylvania grand jury report in the U.S. and so on, there are still some unanswered questions for people from the Vatican in terms of how they are addressing this scandal. A scandal which frankly has been going on at least since 2002 with the Boston allegations. So I thin the short answer is, no George, that people are not yet satisfied with the response from the Vatican.

HOWELL: Also, Delia, let's talk about the allegation of this former archbishop that the pope knew about sexual abuse allegations against a cardinal in 2013 but the pope did nothing about it.

GALLAGHER: Well George, that was a real bombshell that the archbishop, the former envoy to Washington, D.C., releasing a statement, 11-page statement implicating Pope Francis and a number of other church officials for knowing about the allegations about Cardinal McCarrick. The pope did respond to a question on the plane returning to Rome last night. He said that he had read the 11-page document and here is what he told journalists.

He said, "Read the statement carefully and make your own judgment. I will not say a single word on this. I believe the statement speaks for its self. When some time passes, and you have drawn your conclusions, I may speak." So George, the pope really not confirming or denying the allegations and depending on whether or not you are a supporter of Francis, his response will be satisfactory or not.

Of course, supporters of Francis saying that perhaps the archbishop as a conservative, has an ax to grind with Pope Francis, but others saying, well, the allegations are simple enough to respond to if the pope wanted to.

[03:10:03] So right now, we'll l have to see whether or not the pressure builds from within the church really regarding these allegations or whether people are satisfied with Pope Francis' response, George.

HOWELL: All right, Delia Gallagher, live for us in Rome. Delia, thank you.

CHURCH: Mark Healy is a member of Ending Clergy Abuse, a global wide group with abuse survivors and activists and he joins us now from Dublin, Ireland. Thank you sir for being with us. MARK HEALY, ENDING CLERGY ABUSE: (Inaudible).

CHURCH: Now, as a survivor yourself, what is your reaction to Pope Francis refusing to say a single word about this letter from a former archbishop about the pope allegedly covering up abuse in the church?

HEALY: I think the pope is on the run. I think he is firefighting and he has been firefighting since his major gap (ph) back in January when he was leaving Chile with this (inaudible). All is infamous, all his lies, all his (inaudible). I think it's really a response or a comment that should be directed towards the church and the hierarchy.

It is they who are covering up, concealing, and lying to everybody about what's really has gone on in the past and what is going on to address it. Pope Francis has taken his name from a saint whose prayer is all about action. This pope is not living up to any action. He's on the run and I think now it's a house divided and it is going to fall.

I think these allegations raised against him 'and his knowledge of McCarrick clearly show that there is so much happening in respect of what needs to be said about their knowledge of the abuse scandal itself, that they don't know and can't get their messages straight. They are now in-fighting. This is very serious.

This is the beginning of the end as I see it. And certainly we in ECA are calling for a new paradigm, a new discussion so that we can actually get to the bottom of what are the injustices that so many survivors worldwide have had to suffer and endure from this particular institution.

CHURCH: I want to talk to you about the action you are calling for in just a moment, but I want to get to, you know, the fact that the former archbishop did not offer any evidence to support his accusation and we do not know what his motivation may be for going public with these accusations.

Some have suggested that he is a conservative and this is his way of attacking Pope Francis. The pope though says the letter speaks for itself and people should make their own judgment. So what is your judgment when you look at the wording of that letter?

HEALY: Well I have to say, I not seen the wording of this 11-page letter. I have been reading about what has been this disclosure and his calls for his resignation. My response to that is certainly. There needs to be a robust response to the points raised by this particular cleric or hierarchy of figure by the pope. And the pope is not going to discuss, I think, these matters in public because then other revelations will certainly come of this.

So, you know, there is more in this story and there certainly, my belief is the accusations are true and that there was widespread knowledge about McCarrick.

CHURCH: I mean, one would think that if, you know, if they were not true, he would say that straight out but it is very difficult to make any judgment at this point, but I want to go back to the question of action because many Catholics have called for less words and more action and some in America want the bishops to resign. What action would you like to see the church take in response to this abuse now?

HEALY: The setting up of a forum in which we can have a truth and reconciliation worked out, and it has to be on an international (inaudible). But before all of that, we are looking for full disclosure and banks disclosure, all of church records. So that starts with what was gathered by his predecessor, Pope Benedict, he was head of the CDS. They're calling in for all sides (ph) globally to be sent to the congregation for the doctrine of the faith.

So we know that these files are in the Vatican. We also know this worldwide, in each of the diocese archdiocese, that there are files held there also, and not to leave as a major group, those of missionary orders of congregations, whose superiors also hold enormous data and information about their apparent members.

Later this morning, we will be revealing additional names that were revealed here in Ireland, 88 of them already, mand that number is going to be extended this morning here in Ireland. And ECA is going to release that with bishop's accountability or bishop accountability at 10:30.

[03:15:08] CHURCH: Mark Healy, thank you so much for talking with us. We do appreciate it.

HOWELL: Still ahead, another mass shooting in the United States. Investigators trying to learn why a man opened fire during a videogame tournament in Florida.


CHURCH: Once again, a mass shooting in the United States has brought heartache to the state of Florida. This was at a videogame tournament in Jacksonville. Two people were killed when a young man opened fire and then killed himself. Police have identified him as a 24-year-old from Baltimore.

HOWELL: His motive is not clear but we do know that he was competing in a tournament which was being live streamed online. We are about to show you video of one of the games going on when the shooting started. We do warn you, you may find the video disturbing. You can hear the gunshots and at least one person reacting to being shot. Listen.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We got a lot of good games going on.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's a lot. It's going to be hard to be (inaudible)

[03:20:00] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not tough out to (inaudible)


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (BLEEP) What you shoot me with? (GUNSHOTS)


CHURCH: Chilling audio there. And we now know the identities of the two people who were killed. One was Taylor Robertson. He was 27-years- old from West Virginia.

HOWELL: And Eli Clayton, 22 years old, a former high school football player from California. Robertson's gaming sponsor tweeted that the men were great competitors and well-loved members of the Madden community.

CHURCH: Investigators have searched the suspect's family home in Baltimore.

CHURCH: Neighbors says that he was rarely seen. CNN's Polo Sandoval has this report.

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Police in Jacksonville, Florida confirmed that the suspect behind the nation's latest mass shooting is a 24-year-old man from Baltimore, Maryland. Police confirming his identity, David Katz is among the three people dead at the scene. Katz allegedly opened fire at a videogame competition Sunday afternoon inside that Jacksonville restaurant.

Police also believe that Katz was a participant at this videogame tournament though they have not confirmed a motive, only saying that he used a handgun in the shooting. Investigators say Katz shot and killed two people. Nine others were also shot and are recovering from their injuries.

Police now asking the community for any video. They are already going over that footage that already has been circulating online. It shows the seconds before those shots rang out, offering a picture inside that game bar. Investigators also conducting a search of the suspect's vehicle as they try to piece together a motive in this case. Polo Sandoval, CNN, New York.

CHURCH: Joining me now to talk more about this disturbing story is John Matthews. He is a former Dallas police officer and the author of "Mass Shootings: Six Steps to Survival." Thank you so much for being with us.


CHURCH: Well the details of course are chilling, 24-year-old David Katz of Baltimore shot and killed two people, wounded nine others and then turned the gun on himself and took his own life. We don't know the motive just yet but how does something like this happen and what security measures needed to be in place at this tournament to try to prevent a shooting like this?

MATTHEWS: I can tell you, any public gathering, we need to put security measures in place that are going to mitigate the chances of a shooting like this happening. We've got two ways the public enters, check them, just like we check them at athletic events and high profile public facilities.

Anytime we've got the public getting together, we've got to check people, check their bags and make sure they are not bringing a weapon in. In this instance, we had a videogame conference going on and the shooter obviously knew about that.

I've watched many of these videos and the thing that disturbs me the most is that you watch the videos and these young people kept playing the games. They heard the shots. They saw the shooting occurring and they were playing the games. They were so focused, so intent and so the shooter really had the run of the whole place.

CHURCH: Yes, I mean, I don't think any of these video gamers had any idea what was actually taking place. Your book though is about how to survive a shooting like this. What should people do when they are taken by surprise by an incident like this, a lot of the time, not even realizing that a shooting is taking place?

MATTHEWS: Well, the first step is you've got to be situated and initially aware. You've got to be aware of your surroundings, and that was the sad thing about today as these kids were focused on qualifying for this tournament. They were focused on the game and you can hear the gunshots and see the games they were still playing. So you've got to be aware of your surroundings.

The first and best thing you can do is to exit the area. Get away from the gunman as fast as you can in a safe manner. That usually means not going out the primary exit by going out some secondary exit away from the gunman. If you cannot exit, the best thing to do is to find cover. Anything that will stop bullets, that's what you're looking for.

And it might be videogame machines. It might be furniture, soda machines, anything that will stop bullets. If you cannot find cover, find concealment. Concealment is anything that will hide you. If you can stay out of that shooter's line of sight, your chances for surviving an incident like this go up greatly.

CHURCH: Now, you do touch on this, but when you -- we talked about security, but what does America need to do to stop these mass shootings, and when will the politicians think enough is enough? What will it take?

[03:25:01] MATTHEWS: Well, I cannot speak for the politicians. You know, we've had these incidents for the last 30 to 40 years. And so they need to get together in Washington and figure out what they're going to do on a national level. But we as citizens, we've got to be prepared. We've got be trained.

We've got to know how to respond and we've got to beef up security at all of these events. Whether it is an outdoor concert or a videogame tournament or anywhere that large members of the public are getting together, we've got to make security a priority for all Americans.

CHURCH: John Matthews, thank you so much for talking with us. We do appreciate it.

MATTHEWS: Thank you very much.

HOWELL: Still ahead here on "CNN Newroom," remembering a maverick. We'll hear from those who worked closely with U.S. Senator John McCain and learn what it was that earned him that name, the maverick.


CHURCH: Very warm welcome back to our viewers joining us here in the United States, and of course all around the world. You are watching "CNN Newsroom." I'm Rosemary Church.

HOWELL: And I'm George Howell wit the headlines we're following for you this hour.

CHURCH: Another mass shooting in the United States. Two people were killed in Jacksonville, Florida when a man opened fire at a videogame tournament on Sunday. Nine other people were taken to hospitals with gunshot wounds. The suspect identified as a 24- year-old from Baltimore, Maryland used a handgun then killed himself. His motive unclear.

HOWELL: Pope Francis says for now, he will not say a single word of claims that he knew of sexual abuse allegations against a cardinal for years and chose to do nothing about it.