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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Interview With Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA); Trump's $300-Million- Plus Debt Exposed By NYT Raises National Security Concerns; Biden And Trump To Face Off In Their First Debate Tomorrow; GOP, Democrats Prepare For An Election Like No Other; Source: CDC Director Concerned Dr. Scott Atlas Is Sharing Misleading Information With Trump; Global Coronavirus Deaths Surpass The One Million Mark; New Police Body Cam Video Reportedly Shows Moments After Deadly Breonna Taylor Raid. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired September 28, 2020 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
SEN. CHRIS COONS (D-DE): And Erin, as you well know, Justice Ginsburg dedicated her life to gender equality and the Affordable Care Act prevents insurance companies from discriminating against women.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: All right. Senator, thank you very much for your time. A lot more to talk about her. I know we'll have that time as these hearings commence. Thank you for your time tonight.
COONS: You're welcome.
BURNETT: And thanks very much to all of you for yours. "AC360" starts now.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening, the wealthiest President ever does not want to talk about reporting that says he paid less in Federal income taxes in his first year in office than perhaps any President on record, and maybe less than most taxpaying Americans.
Tonight, we'll look at the legal and national security implications, and there are many, but first, just the simple, striking facts starting with the President's odd silence.
He had a chance to talk when he was in front of the microphone twice today, but walked away on both occasions.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Thank you.
QUESTION: Mr. President, who do you owe hundreds of millions of dollars?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Rare, he doesn't gravitate toward a camera. If he hadn't walked away and instead had taken questions, it might have been pointed out to him that Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the first President, for whom we have records paid $11,364.33 in Federal income tax and that was back in 1933. It was a lot of money back then.
Donald J. Trump, by contrast, $750.00 in 2017, the same $750.00, well, probably a different actual $750.00, but the same amount in 2016, and nothing at all, according to "The New York Times" in 10, of the 15 years before that. That, of course comes from the report published in "The New York Times," and it's based on quote, 'Tax return data extending over more than two decades for Mr. Trump, and the hundreds of companies that make up his business organization, including detailed information from his first two years in office."
Now, just think about this. This is information the Trump Organization was providing to the IRS. It's not some random figures that are out there that someone made up. This is what the Trump Organization was saying to the I.R.S. and paying.
As we said, he didn't want to talk about it today, which is odd because he's had plenty to say on the subject in the past, such as here in a tweeted a photo of him sitting next to a stack of papers back in February of 2016. One of the years he reportedly paid just $750.00. "Signing a recent tax return," he writes, "Isn't this ridiculous?"
And yes, yet again, a tweet for everything, or soundbite. Here he is a few months later boasting about not paying any taxes at all.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON (D), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The only years that anybody's ever seen were a couple of years when he had to turn them over to state authorities when he was trying to get a casino license and they showed he didn't pay any Federal income tax. So if he is paying --
TRUMP: That makes me smart.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Smart, he told her. That's what he said back then, because the government would only waste his money.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: And maybe because haven't paid any Federal income tax for a lot of years, and the other thing I think is important --
TRUMP: It would be squandered, too, believe me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Believe me, he says. You can't just go around just giving the Treasury money, they'll only squander it. You might tell that to the man who claims to have written the 2011 book, "Time to Get Tough." He apparently believe that everyone should pay. And I'm quoting now from Donald Trump's allegedly own book, Pages 54 and 55, if you have a copy handy in your home, "Half of America doesn't even pay a single penny in Federal income taxes. That may shock you, but it's true." That same year on that same subject, alleged author Donald Trump told
Sean Hannity quote, "Even if you don't make a lot, you should have to pay something, just something to be part of the game."
So a self-proclaimed multibillionaire -- who knows if that's true -- is saying that even the lowest earning American should pay some income tax. And he is boasting, he is smart for not paying any.
But wait, maybe you're thinking he's just not paying income tax because he made a bunch of bad investments and all those losses outweigh his earnings. And yes, "The Times" did find evidence of that. He is a really bad businessman.
Quoting from the story, "His reports the I.R.S. portray a businessman who takes in hundreds of millions of dollars a year, yet racks up chronic losses that he aggressively employs to avoid paying taxes."
Now, the bottom line, he doesn't have a Midas touch. In fact, far from it -- very far from it. But of course, you'd never know it based on what he told voters when he got into the race.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: And I have assets, big accounting firm, one of the most highly respected $9,240,000,000 and I have liabilities of about 500. That's long term debt. Very low interest rates. In fact, one of the big banks came to me said, Donald, you don't have enough borrowings? Could we loan you $4 billion. I said I don't need it. I don't want it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: They're throwing money at him. They are throwing money. It's crazy.
These days, that big accounting firm, by the way, they're answering subpoenas. So is the only major bank that now deals with him and the Manhattan DA is investigating the Trump Organization, perhaps because the only way you can claim to be rich, too rich to need help and too poor to pay taxes is if you're lying about one or both of those things.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL COHEN, FORMER PERSONAL ATTORNEY OF DONALD TRUMP: It was my experience that Mr. Trump inflated his total assets when it served his purposes, such as trying to be listed amongst the wealthiest people in "Forbes," and deflated his assets to reduce his real estate taxes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: So he lied to the I.R.S., lied to on the other side of it, lied to bankers for loans and reporters and voters. Remember all that talk on the campaign trail by being too rich to need anything from the government? Well, as President, he has been steering government money to his own
companies for the entire time. And that means then to his own pockets. He spends nearly every weekend as you know, at one of his golf clubs. Secret Service, they don't stay for free. He charges them to stay there.
They have to rent golf carts and taxpayers are paying that money and that ends up going to Donald J. Trump. And I guess the kids.
According to "The Washington Post," as of the end of last month, Federal spending records show the taxpayers have paid Trump's businesses more than $900,000.00 just since he took office. As always with Trump, it's other people's money not his he is spending and their money, your money, is going through his family into his pocket.
The same as a hotel in Washington and other properties wherever the Secret Servers or staffers need to rent a room. Other people's money, his pocket.'
Organizations with issues that having a friend in the White House might help with. They hold events at his resorts. Money in his pocket, hoping for influence.
He even tried last year to move the G-7 Summit to his resort near Miami. Do you remember -- him talking about those little bungalows? Gosh, the bungalows.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: With Doral, we have a series of magnificent buildings. We call them bungalows. They each hold from 50 to 70 very luxurious rooms with magnificent views. We have incredible conference rooms, incredible restaurants. It's like -- it's like such a natural.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Other people's money only on a global scale in that case, and when tax time came around, other people's money, not his was good enough to fund the government. And while we do know, or we don't know yet, I should say what if anything he paid in taxes for the last three years. There's a good chance that none of the trillions of dollars in debt while in office will be offset by more than $750.00 of income tax from him.
Boris Johnson joins us now -- Boris Sanchez -- sorry, Boris Johnson. Boris Sanchez joins us now from the White House. Boris, thanks so much for being with us. The President had a briefing today. And over the past couple months, he has used these as an opportunity to answer questions from the press. He didn't take any questions at all today. That's unusual.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: The resemblance is striking, Anderson, I know.
As far as the President taking questions from reporters, there's no indication from sources at the White House why he didn't take questions today. You saw him in the video, sort of speeding out of the Rose Garden.
You imagine that he has been hiding his tax returns since 2015, so he may be hesitant to provide details on some very serious questions. But this data from "The New York Times" raises a couple of things that certainly jumped out. For one, the debt.
The President owes more than $300 million and that bill is coming due within the next four years. So where is that money tied up? Where is it coming from? Is there a potential conflict of interest.
Further, his dealings with other countries? This data from "The New York Times" reveals that the President actually paid more in taxes to the Philippines, to India and to Panama than he did to the United States.
It shines a new light to me when the President says that he believes that foreign countries are ripping off the United States.
Also, the deductions, these mysterious deductions for consultant fees, further writing off $70,000.00 for his hairstyling, I suspect the President is not eager to answer a lot of our questions because they are right for not only criticism, but also ridicule -- Anderson.
COOPER: Did the White House have anything to say about "The New York Times"?
SANCHEZ: Well, the President tweeted out this morning, effectively saying that the story is fake and calling the reporting from "The New York Times" illegal. The Trump Campaign came out and call this a political hit job. Kayleigh McEnany repeated that refrain.
Of course, the President can prove "The New York Times" wrong. All he has to do is actually release his tax returns -- Anderson.
COOPER: Boris Sanchez, appreciate it. Thanks very much.
More now on the legal and public accountability implications of all of this, also the national security dimension because someone with such massive debt hanging over him is almost by definition, vulnerable to being compromised.
Joining us, California Democratic Congresswoman Katie Porter. She's a member of two committees with an interest in this, Oversight and Financial Services. Also with us tonight, CNN national security analyst and former Assistant Secretary for Homeland Security, Juliet Kayyem.
Congresswoman Porter, thanks for being with us. As a consumer protection attorney and an expert in bankruptcy law, when you look at "The Times" has reported on Trump's finances, what jumps out at you on a political level, legal level and moral level?
REP. KATIE PORTER (D-CA): Well, one of the things that jumps out at me is that this is somebody who has failed to give to their country. This is somebody who is a tax dodger, as well as a draft dodger. He gives nothing to his country, and yet he ridicules the men and women who put their lives on the line and make the ultimate sacrifices as losers.
COOPER: Do you see illegality in, you know, him paying Ivanka Trump, giving her hundreds of thousand, $700,000.00 or so as a consultant while she is actually an employee of the Trump Organization. I assume that's a way to pass money to his child in a way that's not taxed. She gets the money and he gets to take a tax deduction?
PORTER: Well, I think there's just such a huge gulf between these kinds of tax gains and tax tricks. And the typical constituent, the typical American family who is simply trying to write a check to cover their taxes.
And this is a President who in 2019, passed a tax law that contains more loopholes exactly like this for the wealthy, even as an increased taxes on many families, including those in Orange County, who I represent.
COOPER: Juliette. I mean, the President apparently has personally guaranteed about $421 million in debt that's coming due in the coming years, unprecedented for a sitting President. Just -- if he has another four years there.
I mean, there's no telling that pressure to make money, how that is going to influence U.S. foreign policy, national security policy and relationships with, you know, he has business in Turkey. And was that one of the reasons why he abandoned the Kurds and, you know allowed right after a brief phone call from Erdogan, allowed the Turkey to just wipe the Kurds away from the north?
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: That's exactly right. I don't think this is a story about taxes, actually, and the Congresswoman is correct to say, you know, the potential for tax loopholes or abuse, but this is really a story about his debt, and only his debt.
And the reason why is because generally, in national security, you would never hire someone. Let's say he was coming in as an Intel analyst, you would never hire anyone with excessive debt and that's for two reasons. One is, they're desperate, right? They will do things to pay off that debt.
The other is more important, as the Proverbs tell us, the borrower is the servant of the lender. And it is that the lender, whoever it is, and it could be Deutsche Bank, it could be a foreign country, it could be a dictator, it could be another family member, who knows, but the lender has undue influence over the borrower. And that's what we don't know at this stage.
So it could very well be that Deutsche Bank holds most of this $400 million and it's not Russia. I think what we have to think about is what countries are willing to lower the debts that Trump has in sort of in a bargain with Trump.
In other words, it doesn't matter to me if Deutsche Bank has the $400 million debt with Trump, it is other countries or people willing to pay off the debt for Trump.
He's in a world of trouble and he needs people to bring down that debt because he is going to be a private citizen, potentially, in just a few months.
COOPER: Yes. I mean, Congresswoman, you know, it raises questions about U.S. really -- you know, why did President Trump go repeatedly so easy on Saudi Arabia's leader in after the killing of "The Washington Post" reporter in the -- you know, in the consulate there?
PORTER: No, it absolutely raises those questions of national security. But as someone who sits on the Financial Services Committee and the Oversight Committee, I am concerned about the President's relationship with Deutsche Bank as well, because he's got a Secretary of the Treasury that he has appointed, Federal Reserve people.
He is pushing a tax law that's the benefit of those big banks, who he owes. This is the $421 million question, what will President Trump do to please his creditors, whether they're foreign entities or domestic?
COOPER: Congresswoman, what would you like to see from -- you know, a congressional standpoint, being done in terms of looking into this?
PORTER: Yes, I am a bill called the Transparency in Executive Branch Finances Act, which would require the President, the Vice President and other high ranking officials to make their tax returns public, and to do so for the five previous years. And I think this is something that frankly, the American public should have had access to before the 2016 election.
I'm glad they're getting this information before 2020 so that they can use it in their decision making.
COOPER: And Juliette, I mean, I guess, you know, if he gets another term in office and debts come do, there's a whole a whole set of challenges about what is he do to try to get bailed out?
KAYYEM: Right. That's exactly right. And we wouldn't have much transparency likely while he is President. So his sort of, let's just say, what's the right word? His eagerness to stay in power, to the extent that he is essentially threatening or having people threaten violence that there won't be a peaceful transition is really -- it's scary, but it's also just filled with desperation.
And so the last couple of weeks begin to make sense to us. This is someone who is going to have significant liabilities once he is a private citizen, and we don't know who owns those liabilities.
If he remains President, he may be willing to sell those liabilities to countries whose interests are not the United States. I guess that's, you know, that's my last point is we have not talked about the United States interests, they are not necessarily aligned with the Trump families. And so for me, that is the sort of takeaway of a massive review of all
these taxes is, this is a person, this is a President who is tied to something. We don't know who, but it's a creditor, and a creditor has a lot of influence over the debtor, especially given the amount of money that we're talking about.
COOPER: Congresswoman Porter, I'm sure, you know, many Members of Congress are going to say what they want to do to hold the President accountable. Congress has not been able to hold the President accountable for much of anything. Why will this be any different?
PORTER: Well, hopefully, he'll step up. This is an issue of political pressure as well, of the American people making this demand for his tax returns and continuing to ask the tough questions of this President about how his financial interest is causing him to act in this presidency in his self-interest.
And you know, I think the American public really is hurt when they have a President who dodges one of the fundamental obligations of citizenship, which is to be part of providing for the things that we all need -- schools and roads and military safety.
This is a President who claims that he is really committed to rebuilding the American military, and yet has not paid one penny in income tax for doing so in 10 of the last 15 years.
This is, as we have servicemen and women who are struggling to make ends meet around the country.
COOPER: Congresswoman Porter, appreciate your time. We've got to go Juliette. Appreciate you being with us.
More now on how Donald Trump operated as a businessman with "The Times" reporting rings any bells for those he worked with. Joining us for that is Jack O'Donnell, former President and Chief Operating Officer of Trump Plaza Casino in Atlantic City. He's also the author of "Trumped: The inside Story of the Real Donald Trump - His Cunning Rise and Spectacular Fall."
Jack, you saw Donald Trump's failures in Atlantic City firsthand. How -- when you read "The New York Times" reporting, did it -- I mean, what did you think?
JACK O'DONNELL, FORMER PRESIDENT AND CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER OF TRUMP PLAZA CASINO IN ATLANTIC CITY: Well, Anderson, not to quote Yogi Berra, but deja vu all over again.
You know, it really is the same story. You know, listen, nobody was surprised that he is, you know, going to take advantage of every loophole both legal and possibly not, that's Donald Trump.
The thing that most surprised me is that he has once again put himself in a position to risk it all. And I think that that's really significant in this case. In the 90s and the 2000s, this man had amassed $3.2 billion worth of debt and he somehow managed to renegotiate that three times with banks and bondholders, and each time, he defaulted on them.
So what's happened now is he has got this -- you know, for years, he hasn't been able to borrow from those legitimate sources. And so I think from what some of the other people are saying tonight, and this is what jumped out at me is who is lending him this money and not so much who's lending it, but who has guaranteed the money to him?
Because back then, he had his father to guarantee his lungs. Today, he doesn't have that.
COOPER: His daddy used to guarantee his loans.
O'DONNELL: Oh, absolutely. He used the entire Trump Organization, including his father's assets and real estate to get loans back then, and listen, it is a famous story at this point where Donald was defaulting on a loan at the Castle Hotel and Casino. He needed $3.2 million. And his father sent an attorney into the casino, deposited the money at the cage and walked away with chips, which is in essence a loan, the way the casino operates.
COOPER: He got some attorney to buy $3 million worth of chips.
O'DONNELL: Absolutely. His father walked -- he had an attorney walk in with $3.2 million in cash. They deposited it at the cage and they walked out with chips. So if you don't redeem those chips, that money stays in the bank.
COOPER: Wow. I wonder if he still has those chips somewhere just as a memento and looks at them and laughs, you know every night.
President Trump -- I mean, he has branded and sold himself to the American people as this enormous business success and you know, a very stable genius. I mean, it was known that it wasn't true back then. But a lot of people believe it, and probably a lot of people still believe it.
O'DONNELL: Yes, you know, it's amazing to me, Anderson, because he just has a record of, you know, buying assets for X amount of dollars, say it's $200 million and then he borrows $400.00 against that. He sets his businesses up to fail from day one. That's what happened in Atlantic City, the Taj Mahal which brought him down.
He had $1.9 billion of debt in Atlantic City. There was no way his casinos could be successful simply because of the money that he borrowed, despite the fact that some of these properties like mine were generating huge amounts of cash annually.
My property spit up $130 million worth of free cash every year and he managed to blow that.
COOPER: You know, what's so interesting to me about this is that, you know, a lot of big business people have financial issues and problems and they go up and they go down. But for Trump, you know, what's -- I think why some people are gleeful about this is because it's so goes against how he has portrayed himself. It goes to hypocrisy.
But it's also how he defines himself, and when you realize that the ways -- the one thing that really matters to Donald Trump, which is money, and his notoriety and seeing his name on buildings and being famous, when that's -- when you realize that that's actually just built on a fraud, or appears to be built on a financial house that's collapsed. It tells you that his very, I mean, the one thing he cares about is failing.
O'DONNELL: Yes, and Anderson, I think we all know that he's very good at denying failure as well. Whether it's COVID or whether it's business, whatever it might be, he just denies, denies, and denies. That's Donald Trump.
COOPER: Jack O'Donnell. Appreciate it. Thank you very much.
O'DONNELL: Thank you, Anderson.
COOPER: Coming up next, and it's kind of -- well the other story with the potential to reshape the rest of the presidential campaign, the debate, a live preview and a conversation with the man who ran the last campaign against Donald Trump.
Later, a new rapid COVID test and the potential it may have for everyone. Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins us with the facts we all should know.
COOPER: On any other night before the first presidential debate of the campaign, this would be the lead story. The reason why it's not, the tax story will certainly play into the proceedings tomorrow and could reshape how people who tune into the event view it.
Joining us now from the debate site in Cleveland is Arlette Saenz. So, Arlette, do we have any details on how both the Biden and Trump campaigns are preparing?
ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, Joe Biden and President Trump have gone after each other from afar for a little over a year now.
But tomorrow night here in Cleveland, they will come face-to-face for the first time in this first presidential debate. And each of the candidates has been preparing in their own way.
Joe Biden started out by reading through briefing books, and he has been huddling with his advisers over the past few days as he has been strategizing how to respond to what he predicts will be personal attacks from the President.
Now on the President's part, he has also been studying up on possible lines of attack that Biden could lob his way. He said that Rudy Giuliani and Chris Christie have at times stood in for Biden as he has prepared for this debate. And one question is how this story about the President's taxes will
play in tomorrow night's debate. The Biden campaign argues that this just feeds into their narrative that this campaign is one between Scranton middle class values and Park Avenue suggesting that the President is only worried about his own interest rather than those of everyday Americans.
Now, on the Trump campaigns part, they've had a little bit of mixed messaging when it comes to what they expect Biden's debate performance to be like today. They told Republican Members of Congress to talk about that Biden shouldn't be underestimated in this debate, that he has plenty of years of experience debating and in public life. In the past, they have tried to question Biden's mental acuity heading into this debate.
On the Biden campaign side, they argue, and Democrats believe that this debate will fundamentally do little to change the fundamentals of the race.
So you hear a little bit of the expectation setting for both of the campaigns as they're heading off to this one-on-one face off.
COOPER: Yes. Do you know much about the format and the timing of the debate itself?
SAENZ: Well, this debate will be completely different from other debates due to the coronavirus pandemic. It will be a 90-minute debate covering six topics that were chosen by the moderator, Chris Wallace of FOX News.
The candidates will forego that traditional handshake at the start of the debate. They will be socially distanced as they stand on that stage.
It will be a much more smaller, limited audience due to coronavirus and everyone who is on hand has been tested for COVID-19 before they enter that Debate Hall, just several of the many precautions that the Debate Commission is taking in order to ensure the safety of the candidates, the audience members and the media heading into this debate tomorrow night.
COOPER: Arlette Saenz, thanks for much. Appreciate it.
We are learning about how each side is preparing. Tomorrow will be the only true test of it, especially on the Biden side because, safe to say, whoever plays the role of Donald Trump in rehearsal sessions cannot begin to replicate just what it's like to face the man on a stage.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: Look, it's just not true, and so please go to them --
COOPER: Allow her to respond, please.
TRUMP: Oh, you didn't delete them. CLINTON: Personal e-mails, not official.
TRUMP Oh, 33,000.
CLINTON: Well, we turned over 35,000.
TRUMP: Oh, yes, what about the other 15,000?
COOPER: Please allow her to respond. She didn't talk while you talked.
CLINTON: Yes, that's true. I didn't.
TRUMP: Because you have nothing to say.
CLINTON: It's just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country.
TRUMP: Because you'd be in jail.
CLINTON: What we want to do is to replenish the --
TRUMP Such a nasty woman. Honest Abe. Honest Abe never lied. That's the good thing. That's the big difference between Abraham Lincoln and you.
CLINTON: He didn't pay any federal income tax.
TRUMP: That makes me smart.
CLINTON: So, if he has paid --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Joining us now somewhere in the backstage view of those moments, former Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta. Chair Podesta, thanks for being with us. What are your views should Vice President be prepared for tomorrow for President Trump? And how did Secretary Clinton prepare for those debates?
JOHN PODESTA, FMR CLINTON CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN: Well, I think what he needs to do is, go in prepared to talk to the American public. This is a chance after a summer of COVID, where campaigning has been restricted to talk to, we had 84 million people, the largest debate audience ever for the first debate. And that's what he should expect. And he needs to talk directly to them.
Now, he knows that Trump is going to try to interfere with that. And you just played a good deal of what he's likely to do attack, attack, attack. But I think he needs to push back where it's appropriate. But mostly, he needs to talk to the American people.
COOPER: You know, it's interesting because of Vice President Biden, you know, I don't know if it was weeks or months ago, but said that he was going to fact check him on stage, which seems like a recipe for disaster. I mean, it's not a format that really, you can eat up all your time fact checking a Donald Trump and not get anything of your own out there.
PODESTA: Yes, exactly. I would, you know, I don't think Chris Wallace will fact check them. And I don't think Joe Biden should fact check them, there'll be plenty of that coming up, you know, after the debate. What he needs to do, though, is, you know, be firm push back when Trump's interfering with what he's trying to say, lay out the plans.
He spent the summer really laying out very concrete plans of what he wants to do on COVID-19, how to get control of the virus, what he wants to do to get the economy in better shape, putting people to work, attacking the climate crisis, the racial justice crisis, he needs to get some of that in front of the American people. So they know what he is going to do.
I think what he's best at is projecting that he is on the side of the middle class. That's Biden's strength. And I think this tax story will give them the opportunity to contrast what Donald Trump has been about his whole life. And what Joe Biden has been about his whole life fighting for middle class people.
COOPER: It seems to be, you know, President Trump, you know, has his own, there are facts, but he just makes stuff up and just repeats it. If, you know, we've heard from the Biden campaign that, you know, he's reading, you know, binders with, you know, information and, and research and stuff of facts, a factual stuff. If Biden is arguing facts and trying to recite facts, there's a danger that -- I mean, Donald Trump is playing a different game.
And it's, I'm curious to see for the viewing public, how much of this is they want to hear facts about what Joe Biden's position is? Or do they just want to see the dynamic between these two people and whether Joe Biden can hold up to it and whether President Trump can hold on to it?
PODESTA: Yes. No, like, I think that what he needs to do is not, you know, come into this debate hall, thinking like he's practicing for some PhD exam and throttle out of facts. What he needs to do is tell a story. What does he want to do for the American people? Where is he? What are his values, contrast those with Trump, tell stories about the people that he wants to fight for.
And, you know, push Trump back, but because of his failures, he's on the high ground when he's hitting him on COVID-19. He's -- Trump has had the worst job performance of any president since World War II. And I think that Biden can be on solid ground by just criticizing the factual record of what Trump has done. But most importantly, get in front of the American people who he's fighting for and what he wants to do.
COOPER: You know, I've noticed one thing Joe Biden does in debates is he stops himself when the light goes or when his time is up, which is a very rare thing. And again, most people go over and, you know, wait to be shushed by the moderator. I'm very curious to see how Joe Biden responds when Donald Trump is doing what he did to Secretary Clinton in that second debate, talking while she's talking interjecting throwing, you know, trying to throw person off their game.
PODESTA: Yes, look, I think he plays by the rules and debates more than he probably should and probably that he can afford to tomorrow night. He's going to have to, I think confront Trump when Trump tries to blow up the format. And hopefully, you know, you look you've been there understand, you know, how difficult sometimes it can be to get people to stick to what the agreed upon rules are, but Biden can't kind of fall victim to being the, you know, the person who's playing by the rules way while Trump is violating all the rules.
Having said that, you know, he can't just be on his side of the playing field, either. He's got to get his message across. And I think he can do that. But if it means going over a little bit, or shutting Trump up when he needs to, I think, you know, that would be appropriate. And I think the American public would like to see that.
COOPER: You know, both men have been known to lose their tempers on the campaign trail. You know, we've seen President Trump, you know, yelling often on in interviews, and, you know, what, reporters. We've also seen Joe Biden out on the campaign trail of, you know, getting in somebody's face over something somebody said to him face to face. I don't know if losing one's temper is a good thing or a bad thing in a debate like this?
PODESTA: Well, it kind of depends on what you're losing your temper over, you know. If he takes unfair cheap shots at his family, then I think going back at him and losing your temper a little bit, is perfectly appropriate. And on the other hand, you know, look, he's going to, I think Biden is going to be well prepared for this debate. And, you know, it's not like the casual encounter on a rope line.
He's going to be well prepared know, what he needs to deliver, make the sharp criticism of Trump particularly on COVID-19. But also, on the other ways that he's broken his promises to the American people to be the president of the middle class. Now we know obviously, when it comes to his own personal finances, the only thing he cares about which he probably knew already, is himself.
So I think he's got a lot to work with. He just needs to be disciplined, not gets thrown off by Trump's antics. But you can bet there will be antics. Remember his stocking across the stage in the in the, in the town hall debate with Hillary. I think Hillary actually regrets not turning around and smacking him back.
COOPER: In terms of the New York Times, I mean, you referenced this in terms of reporting on taxes, it does certainly play into what Joe Biden has been trying to get across the whole Park Avenue versus Scranton thing. But there's some reporting on Trump's taxes. I mean, it was out there in 2016, certainly not to this degree, but it was an issue. Secretary Clinton brought it up on the debate stage, and yet it didn't seem to resonate. PODESTA: Well, you know, I think he's now the President of the United States. And when you're when you're the President of the United States, and you're paying $750 in federal income tax, and there are people out fighting wars for this country, when there are teachers who pay more than that in taxes, when there are frontline workers fighting the pandemic, who are paying a lot more than that in taxes, then it becomes less of a reality TV show, you know, you can blow it off of saying, of course, I did.
You know, that's, I'm proud of the fact that I don't care about my country. I don't care about the people who are on the frontlines fighting for their communities. I only care about myself. I think it has a different quality in this moment and in this atmosphere. And that number $750 in federal income tax is something that I think people can reflect that and relate to, because they know they're paying a lot more.
COOPER: Yes. John Podesta, really appreciate it. Thank you.
PODESTA: Thanks, Anderson.
COOPER: When topic expected to come up in tomorrow's debate election security, the president often tax and mail-in ballots questioned the integrity of the vote except in Florida. And of course, the President uses unfounded allegations to raise all those things.
CNN's Abby Phillip now on the planning, both sides have put in place for an election that could be like no other.
ABBY PHILLIP, CNN POLITICAL REPORTER (voice-over): Democratic officials tell CNN, an army of lawyers are preparing for a wide range of obscure election scenarios that President Trump himself has floated from sending law enforcement to monitor polls to having the election decided in Congress.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF UNITED STATE: We have an advantage. If we go back to Congress, Does everyone understand that?
PHILLIP (voice-over): A disputed Electoral College result could put the fate of the election the hands at the new House of Representatives elected in November, with each state delegation getting one vote. Republicans currently have a 26 to 22 advantage. Speaker Nancy Pelosi is ready for this possibility.
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): I had been working on this for a while I've been working on almost every scheme he might have to steal the election.
PHILLIP (voice-over): Sending a letter to her caucus urging them to focus on winning a majority of state delegations in November and flipping the Senate, writing, we must achieve that majority of delegations or keep the Republicans from doing so. Trump has also floated the idea of an election that's decided in the Supreme Court, like Bush v. gore in 2000. TRUMP: I think this will end up in the Supreme Court. And I think it's very important that we have nine justices.
PHILLIP (voice-over): One of the Florida judges at the center of that recount who sided with Bush to stop the count and has since retired, making his fears of Trump clear in a rare letter to colleagues, saying Trump is a threat to democracy and giving only one real solution.
CHARLES WELLS, FMR CHIEF JUSTICE, FLORIDA SUPREME COURT: There will not be a problem if the Democrats if, when the Senate win and Biden wins the presidency. The problem will result if there is continued to be a divide between the House and the Senate.
PHILLIP (voice-over): Trump falsely claiming that voter fraud is rampant, tweeting this morning, the ballots being returned to states cannot be accurately counted. Many things are already going very wrong. But the President has been building a case against absentee ballots or mail-in voting for months, none of which is based on facts. Widespread voter fraud is largely non existent in the United States.
TRUMP: You could forget about November 3rd, because you're going to be counting these things forever. And it's a very dangerous country.
PHILLIP (voice-over): But there are real risks for the election. The FBI issuing its latest election warning, this time about fake cyber attacks. They caution the public to be wary of internet claims of hacked voter data, and compromise selection infrastructure, things that manipulate public opinion and discredit the electoral process.
Today, courts in New York and Pennsylvania ordered the post office to stop policy changes that would slow down the mail. Echoing last week settlement with the post office forcing it to prioritize election mail.
Abby Philip, CNN, Washington.
COOPER: Up next, is breaking news in the fight against coronavirus, a new pledge on testing? Details when we continue.
COOPER: There is more breaking news the nation's death toll from the coronavirus has now passed 205,000 human beings. This is President Trump today announced what he called expanded coronavirus testing across the nation which if fulfilled, would deploy 150 million rapid tests to states. The President originally talked about the same plan back in late August, but there were a few details.
On top of that, NBC News reports that CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield was overheard on an airplane -- on a phone call on the airplane talking about the President's latest scientific adviser Dr. Scott Atlas. Redfield was quoted as saying everything he says is false.
Want to bring in CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Dr. Richard Besser, the former Acting Director of the CDC.
Dr. Besser, these lab -- these Abbott lab tests I think the Giroir -- the Admiral says that -- the public health admiral says that, they're a game changer are they?
RICHARD BESSER, FMR ACTING DIRECTOR, CDC: Well, I would not call them a game changer. Clearly more testing is needed and it's great to see more testing going out. But what you really want to see as a game changer is the President and the country coming together around doing the things that are going to prevent transmission. So wearing masks, social distancing, and hand washing. But, I do think it's a good sign if there's more testing that's going to be available if it leads to identification of cases quickly so they can be controlled and reduce the chances of spread.
COOPER: Sanjay, are the test reliable?
SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: They're pretty good test. I mean, they're getting better. That the thing about these tests that concern about a false positive is that it finds a virus, it finds a coronavirus, but it doesn't happen to be this coronavirus. That happens sometimes the bigger concern is a false negative, someone is told that they're free and clear.
But in fact, the test missed the virus. The way I've looked at these tests quite a bit these Abbott tests, the way that they got this emergency use authorization is that the studies they presented were in people who had symptoms, and they -- those symptoms were within the last seven days. And with that, they said they were 95% sensitive. So that's pretty good.
It should translate pretty well to people who are even asymptomatic because we know people can still carry a lot of virus in their nose and their mouth even if they don't have symptoms. So, I think they're pretty good tests are not as good as the gold standard PCR tests. But if you have lots of tests, and people are able to do them much more regularly, that overall improves the accuracy within large groups of people as well.
COOPER: And Sanjay, when they say well, they're sending them out to states, how would people actually get these? Where were these tests be use? Who would get that?
GUPTA: Yes. Well, so I've gotten so many calls today from people who said, OK, we heard the 150 million tests, where are they exactly? That's one of the questions. What they're saying is that they're going to be going to vulnerable populations, nursing homes, things like that.
But they're going to start giving to schools as well, primary schools, K-through 12, to try and help schools, test students and faculty and hopefully reopen. The issue and, you know, we've talked about this for some time, I think this is what Richard is saying as well is that, you need a lot more tests to do that. You could be negative today, and possibly positive tomorrow.
You know, guys like Mike Mena (ph) at Harvard, they talked about the idea that, could we get to the point where you have a test that you could do every day, kind of like when you brush your teeth, if you're positive, you stay home, if you're negative, you're able to go do things. So, we're clearly nowhere close to that yet. That would be, you know, 350 million tests a day.
COOPER: And Dr. Besser, both the president and vice president have repeatedly warned that with an increase in testing cases, numbers go up the president adding quote in low risk populations, but of course testing, I mean, doesn't create new cases here.
BESSER: No, it doesn't. It allows you to see what's going on. And one of the things about the use of testing is it's really important that as states do more testing, one that they mandate reporting, because there's a lot of testing that's going on now around universities that isn't getting into this system which is a problem with numbers and their accuracy.
But the other is ensuring that data is broken down, so that you can see what's going on in every neighborhood by every zip code. Breaking down by race and ethnicity and gender, so that you're ensuring that every part of your community is getting the resources they need to get this under control.
COOPER: Sanjay, Dr. Scott Atlas, who's now the President seems to be the go-to guy who has the President's ear and everybody else, you know, Redfield, Fauci, Dr. Birx, they've all been sidelined and, you know, don't really meet with the President. Atlas spoke today. There's this NBC reporting that CDC Director Rob Redfield was quote, it was heard on a plane telling somebody everything he says is false.
How concerning is it that all the experts I mean, the best in the world, Fauci, Birx on epidemics are sidelined and on the outside looking in. While a guy who's from what I understand and correct me if I'm wrong, are radiologists and maybe a very good radiologist. And there's nothing you know, that's important thing. But he's not a, as far as I know, an expert in I mean, doesn't have a lifetime career like Fauci.
GUPTA: Right, no. And as Fauci described him today, he's an outlier. And what he's basically saying is a look, the public health community does have a consensus opinion on many of these big issues, masks and herd immunity and things like that. It's that -- there are things that are worthy debates and worthy discussions. What the President has done, here is his doctor shop, you know, this is what happens in the real world.
Sometimes you have patients, they've seen 10 different doctors are trying to find the doctor who's going to tell them what they want to hear, given the medication that they want to get, give them a treatment that has not been recommended by other doctors. You can keep searching and you'll find somebody who ultimately does that. And frankly, that's what's happened at the national level here.
GUPTA: (INAUDIBLE) doctor shopping on behalf of all of us. Yes, it is terrifying. It's very concerning. And the idea that you have these infectious disease doctors who are not just great. They're the best doctors in the world at what they do, are being marginalized. And instead, the President is found somebody who just will say what you wants to hear.
COOPER: Dr. Besser, I mean for his part, the CDC released a statement saying that Dr. Redfield, quote, or the Dr. Redfield and Atlas have different positions on three issues, the value of wearing a mask, youth COVID-19 affections and where we are currently with herd immunity. Those seem like three pretty important positions now.
BESSER: Well, they're not only in important positions, but the idea that a really fringe position is having influence in the White House Task Force is frightening. You know, we have the worlds -- many of the world's leading experts in public health, infectious disease, pandemic control. You know, Dr. Fauci was quoted today, raising great concern in terms of the number of cases going into the winter going into flu season. If that's running counter to what Dr. Atlas is saying, and Dr. Atlas has the President's ear. That's a very, very concerning situation.
COOPER: Dr. Besser, Sanjay, thanks so much.
And one other sad note you might have already seen at the bottom of your screen. The global death toll, according to Johns Hopkins University has just crossed 1 million.
More breaking news ahead. There's brand new police video in Breonna Taylor's case when it shows and what it could mean, next.
COOPER: Breaking news out of Louisville tonight new police body camera footage obtained by Vice News reportedly shows the immediate aftermath inside the apartment where Breonna Taylor was killed. Kentucky authorities have long said there's no similar footage to the actual moment when shots were fired. Our Shimon Prokupecz joins us now with more. So what is the footage show?
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME & JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, so this is video as you said Anderson in the aftermath, the immediate moments after the shooting. As you look at this video, it's important to keep in mind here. What it shows is the detective that now former detective who was indicted Brett Hankinson, walking through the crime scene, and he's talking about some of the shell casings that was -- that were fired and ultimately recovered. And in this video, you see him going into the apartment, which is raising questions about the integrity of the crime scene. Here's that video Anderson. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRETT HANKINSON, FMR POLICE OFFICER: (INAUDIBLE) casings in -- the third case.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE).
HANKINSON: Yes, right there.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right there?
HANKINSON: No, (INAUDIBLE) there some there. Back out until they get to you in here. So.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's another against visible.
HANKINSON: We've not seen it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: You also -- I mean it's hard to see really to tell much from that. You also have new reporting about motion, the motion of grand jury and the case is filed.
PROKUPECZ: Yes. So, this is a pretty unprecedented. A grand juror who actually served on a jury that indicted this former detective has now filed a motion with the court asking the court to release information about exactly what evidence was presented by the attorney general. There are all sorts of questions being raised about what the attorney general exactly thought -- what he exactly presented, as it related to Breonna Taylor.
And family and lawyers for Breonna Taylor asking wondering whether or not even any evidence about her death was presented to this grand jury. This grand jury in this motion seems to indicate that the attorney general mischaracterized when he -- what he presented to the grand jury when he held that press conference, Anderson.
COOPER: And the former detective Brett Hankinson also appeared in court today.
PROKUPECZ: He did. It was his arraignment. He pleaded not guilty of what happened there was the judge let him out on $15,000 bail, but the judge also said that he wanted prosecutors to file the grand jury information the recordings from the grand jury by Wednesday. So, there is the possibility that on Wednesday, we could for the first time get our view, a view inside the grand jury when those recordings are filed. If they're made public, we will get access to them, Anderson.
COOPER: Shimon Prokupecz, appreciate it. Thanks very much for being there.
The news continues tonight. I want to hand over Chris for "CUOMO PRIME TIME." Chris?
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: All right Anderson, thank you very much. I am Chris Cuomo. Welcome to PRIME TIME.
The President's dirty secrets have been exposed.