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EPA Spills Contaminated Mine Water; House GOP Dems Visit Israel Ahead of Vote; Protests in Ferguson; Trump the Grump? Aired 10:30 to 11a ET

Aired August 11, 2015 - 10:30   ET


[10:29:35] CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: He's declared a state of emergency, and now the governor of Colorado is expected to hold a briefing next hour with the latest on the millions of gallons of toxic sludge accidentally spilled into the Animas River. So far, officials have provided few details about the potential environmental disaster. They haven't warned of health risks facing locals or whether or not the drinking water is in peril.

But answers need to come soon, because those pollutants that turned the river orange are spreading, and cities in new Mexico are now at risk.

CNN's Dan Simon is in Durango, Colorado.

DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well hi -- Carol, the EPA is usually in the business of responding to emergencies not causing them but that is exactly what happened in this case. You can see some of the signs along the shore saying the river is closed and let me show you why.

You can see this toxic sludge along the shore, this orange- yellowy color. And we actually collected some of the water. You can see what it looks like, there's arsenic in here, there's lead, so this is some pretty nasty stuff. This all happened when the EPA, they were trying to clean this abandoned gold mine and it completely backfired.

Three million gallons of this stuff come into the Animas River, The river is shut down indefinitely. As you can imagine local residents and businesses they are very concerned about this. We talked to the owner of a local rafting company.


DAVID MOLER, OWNS RAFTING COMPANY: They should have had safeguards in place before they started poking around up there.

SIMON: How is this going to impact your bottom line?

MOLER: Drastically. I mean this is our lifeline. We've been a rafting company established for over 32 years. This will negatively impact our bottom line.

(END VIDEO CLIP) SIMON: Now, we are waiting for the EPA to tell us what exactly

is in this water and how dangerous it might be. There are huge concerns that it could impact wildlife. This water's also used to irrigate crops, and as it goes downstream, there's also the concern that it could impact other communities, but again, we're still waiting to get more clarity from the EPA -- Carol.

COSTELLO: Thanks to Dan Simon.

And good morning. I'm Carol Costello. Thank you so much for joining me. New York Senator Chuck Schumer is defending his decision not to support the Iran nuclear deal. At a news conference last hour, he told reporters it was one of the toughest decisions he's ever had to make, but he called it a decision of conscience.


SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK: This agreement sanctions a threshold Iranian nuclear state after 10 to 15 years. That means the United States and all the governments of the world say it's OK for Iran to be a threshold nuclear state. That's a lot different than doing it on its own. And that caused me real trouble.


COSTELLO: In the meantime, a delegation of House Republicans is in Jerusalem ahead of next month's vote on the deal. Israel wants to convince Congress to reject it. The GOP delegation met earlier with Israel's president who told them he's concerned the deal will further destabilize an already chaotic region.

CNN CORRESPONDENT OREN LIEBERMANN: CNN correspondent Oren Liebermann, live in Jerusalem with more. Good morning.

OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning Carol and that is that what we're hearing now from Israeli leadership that this Iran nuclear deal doesn't just threaten the security of Israel and threatens the region, he stabilizes it -- and would also threaten to security of America. They've had 22 Democrats here. Last week they actually just left and now they have 36 Republicans here. The Republicans would be the easier sell. Many of them already lining up to vote against this deal.

But the question, the real question here is how many of those was Prime Minister Netanyahu able to convince -- of course, he's been lobbying against this deal from the very beginning. It's a frame work deal, into the final deal and now he's pushing on Congress. Again, he knows he has the Republicans at his side. The question how many of those 22 Democrats if any was he able to convince. He sat down with the leader of the delegation, Congressman Steny Hoyer and asked him will you vote for or against the deal. He hedged. He wouldn't give us an answer there. He said he's going to go home. He's got to think about. He has to meet with the administration but he did break with the administration on one specific point. President Obama has painted a stark picture and said it's a vote for the deal or set the U.S. on a path to war with Iran. . Congressman Hoyer, very much disagreed there.

Here's what he had to say.


REP. STENY HOYER: I do not believe that if the agreement were not approved that that is the path to war. We impose the sanctions through congress with the cooperation of the administration. The sanctions, in my opinion, brought Iran to the table. And the first steps, of course, would be to A, keep sanctions in place, and B, perhaps to make sanctions even tougher. So that I don't agree that we would set the country on a path to war.


LIEBERMANN: The Republicans met with the president, earlier today, Carol, they will meet with prime minister Netanyahu later on this week.

COSTELLO: Oren Liebermann reporting live from Jerusalem this morning. Thanks so much.

Still to come in the NEWSROOM -- demonstrations and civil acts of disobedience in Ferguson. We're talking with one protestor who wanted to make his statement by walking away in handcuffs.


[10:39:10] COSTELLO: Chaos and clashes on the streets of Ferguson, Missouri. This is what it looked like last night as demonstrators returned to the streets. Many of them marking the anniversary of the shooting death of Michael Brown, an unarmed teenager who was killed by police officer Darren Wilson last summer.

And while demonstrations have remained largely peaceful, others went head to head with police, hurling frozen water bottles and rocks. Earlier in the day, demonstrators shut down busy roadways, organized a sit-in in downtown, more than 50 people were arrested at that demonstration, including DeRay McKesson, the protest organizer and an activist. And he joins me now live.

Thank you so much for being with me.

DERAY MCKESSON, PROTESTER: Thank you, pleasure to be here.

COSTELLO: Pleasure to have you here. So how did your arrest go down?

MCKESSON: So, I was with my partner, Neta and she was filming the police, we were both tweeting about the protest. And the police arrested her for filming them. And I went over to the police and questioned the arrest, and I was arrested subsequently.

[10:40:11] COSTELLO: What did they arrest you for, did they tell you? MCKESSON: So it appears that the charge is unlawful obstruction

of a lawful entrance is what we were told. We got a ticket for it.

COSTELLO: And now some people might accuse you of wanting to be arrested. What would you say to them?

MCKESSON: You know, there's a long history of law enforcement targeting people who are trying to tell the truth. There were many who are people arrested. And again we were arrested for documenting what the police were doing. The police were using zip ties that are really tight on people's arms, and a host of other things.

And even last night the people are wantonly macing people up there, and it wasn't because anything had done anything to provoke them. The police are provoking people. So that is the truth, and that is what I would say to those people.

COSTELLO: I just talked to a committee woman who said there's an element that comes into these protests from outside of Ferguson. And causes trouble and uses these protests as an excuse to commit violence against police. Do you agree?

MCKESSON: So what I know to be true is the police here in St. Louis have remained violent since August. They've killed eight people and they paralyzed one and another want is unstable but critical condition right now.

I know that to be true. People that are tired and we've not yet seen justice which is why people are still on the streets. Policing has not changed enough yet.

COSTELLO: You yourself are not from Ferguson, Missouri, correct?

MCKESSON: Correct.

COSTELLO: Correct. Yet, you come in and you protest in Ferguson. Why is it so important to you and why do you do it?

MCKESSON: So remember, there's a Mike Brown in every town of Ferguson, there's a representative city of so many across the country, and I stand and I stand marginalized people across the country. I am a protester who was here August and stayed for so many of the protests. And was here with so many other people.

And remember that in justice is something that we fight wherever it erupts. Or whatever it is.

COSTELLO: You have a lot of followers on Twitter, yet, you've become a little controversial. Ebony magazine interviewed you recently and they described you as the very loved. And you also said this. We'll get to this in a second.

But I wanted to ask you why "Ebony Magazine" described you that way.

MCKESSON: You know, I think that there's -- truth telling will always be a radical action in the America. You know, the status quo did not get to merge overnight. People worked to make the status quo the way that it is. And they will do whatever they can to protect this. And the movement is about challenging the status quo and saying that we can live in a world where the police don't kill people, we will fight for that world. No matter what the fight looks like.

So I think that that is why people hate me. I think that there might -- you know, it's easier to criticize me than it is to criticize racism, and I also understand that.

COSTELLO: Well, some people might accuse you of going into places like Ferguson and riling things up.

MCKESSON: Yes, and you know what I would say, the police are killing people. And we are responding to the fact that the police are killing people. I'm not killing people. I have not committed the act, I'm responding to the act. And I'm trying to make sure that the terror of police violence ends.

So if people consider telling the truth riling people up, then it can be that. But again I'm telling the truth like so many other people about what's happening in our communities.

COSTELLO: Do you plan to join protesters again tonight?

MCKESSON: Yes, I joined protesters wherever protesters are. And the truth is so damning that it should radicalize people and it has here and everywhere across the country.

COSTELLO: Deray McKesson, Thank you so much for being with me this morning. I appreciate it.

Still to come in the NEWSROOM, want to make more money? I'll tell you where to move, next.


[10:48:18] COSTELLO: Happening right now, federal investigators are meeting to discuss the cause of the 2014 crash that injured Tracy Morgan and killed fellow comedian James McNair. A Walmart truck slammed into the back of the limo Carrying Morgan McNair and several others last June. A preliminary report on the truck driver was speeding and had not slept in more than 24 hours. He's been charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto.

A disturbing report kept secret by the federal government for three years says the nation's air traffic controllers are dangerously sleepy, possibly putting you at risk when you're flying. In the 2012 study, nearly two in ten controllers admitted to significant errors on the job including allowing planes to fly too close to one another. Many blamed those mistakes on being too tired.

The FAA says fatigue is less of a problem now though than when that study was done. It says changes have been made since then, including more off-time between shifts. Want a raise? I know I do. Then you might want to head to

Columbus Ohio Head to Columbus, Ohio or maybe San Francisco. CNN's Christine Romans has a list of the cities that are giving people more money.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, more money, depending on where you live. It's so interesting, you know. Wage growth has been so stubborn -- only about 2 percent, 2.1 percent for the nation as a whole. But when you dig in to these numbers from the Labor Department you can see in the most recent months where wages are rising.

Columbus, Ohio -- something's going right in the Buckeye state, Carol because 6.2 percent year over year wage growth. San Francisco the Bay Area in general doing very, very well -- 6 percent wage growth there. Virginia Beach, Louisville Kentucky, Rochester New York -- in all of these cities you see an unemployment rate that is falling. That is below the national average.

[10:50:00] And in some cases, unemployment rates that are below where there were when the recession began back to pre-recession levels. You are seeing more jobs than qualified people to fill them in some of these places. And that means employers have to raise wages to attract them.

So we'll see if that spreads out. We need to see it spread in more places than just a few, obviously.

COSTELLO: That would be nice.

ROMANS: That would be nice. But anecdotally at least a lot of CEOs are saying, a lot of bosses are saying they're having trouble finding the workers they need. They think they're going to have to start paying up in the days and months ahead so that could mean wages start to rise for everyone.

COSTELLO: OK. We have to talk about the stock market once again because the Dow's still down more than 150 points.

ROMANS: Yes, taken back, well, you know yesterday at the rally, it had a nice 240 point rally so it still hasn't taken back all of what he gained yesterday. But you have concerns about China, and this surprise, shocking move, China doing a one-time devaluation of its currency.

What does that mean? China keeps very tight reigns on where its currency trades vis-a-vis, the dollar, the dollar has been strong in the months, the months, past months, so China allowing the devaluation of its currency so that its exports get better treatment in global markets, meaning its products are cheaper than American products and other products. That's why you're seeing some concern in the stock markets about potential, let's say international discord over the manipulation of currencies.

COSTELLO: Thanks. I know you'll keep an eye on it.

ROMANS: I will. I will.

COSTELLO: Christine Romans -- many thanks.

Still to come in the NEWSROOM, he's leading the GOP polls, so why won't Donald Trump crack a smile?


[10:55:42] COSTELLO: All right. Checking some top stories for you, 55 minutes past. Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper is now feeding fish in Durango. We're expecting a news conference from the governor at any moment because, you know, there's a big problem with the Animas River in southern Colorado. Toxic pollutants have like turned the river orange and everybody's wondering if that'll affect drinking water not only in southern Colorado, but also in the state of New Mexico.

And there you see the Governor John Hickenlooper feeding the fish at some fisheries this morning. As I said, the governor will soon be making a statement.

In other news, Seattle is taking a stronger stance on gun violence. The city council unanimously voting Monday night for both a gun and ammunition tax. The new bill will impose a $25 tax on each gun sold, and two to five cents per ammo round. The funds will go to anti-gun violence campaigns and research.

Investigators are blocking off a patch of forest in Germany where a U.S. fighter jet has crashed. The F-16 pilot managed to safely eject before the accident, and is said to be ok. The flight was part of a training exercise. No word on what caused the crash.

A French couple found dead off a hiking trail in new Mexico may have helped their son survive by giving him extra water. The nine- year-old boy was found alive, but dehydrated right next to his father's body. The sheriff says it appears the parents died from the effects of the 100 degree heat. He says they did not have enough water for the hike, but gave their son two drinks for every one they took.

And this video will make you cringe. An Irish cyclist launched over (INAUDIBLE) and flew into a nearby race support car on Saturday's tour of Utah. You could see that people who ran to help other cyclists also crashed. The Irish cyclist is now listed in stable condition.

And finally this morning, could Donald Trump's face, specifically his seemingly permanent pout, reveal more about the man leading the GOP pack? An expert in facial coding -- yes, there is such a thing -- says it can. Here's Jeanne Moos.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: He is Trumpzilla. Crushing the competition in the shadow of the media shine their lights on him. So why was the Donald looking like Trump the grump in his first big debate?

Listen to Dan Hill, a man who reads faces. What struck you, if anything, about Mr. Trump?

DAN HILL, FACIAL CODING EXPERT: Well, first of all, the guy hardly smiles. He may be the unhappiest rich man in America.

MOOS: Reporter: even when he talked about fun --

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It's fun, it's kidding, we have a good time.

MOOS: He didn't look like he was having a good time. Did he smile at all, Dan? I mean Does he ever smile?

HILL: He only smiles when he's making a sarcastic comment.

TRUMP: Only Rosie O'Donnell.

MOOS: Facial coding expert, Dan Hill expected Trump to show anger, squinting eyes and pressed lips. And in that sense, the unsmiling Donald is totally on message.

HILL: You can argue that not being content is his whole message.

MOOS: Of course, Trump's defenders like these sisters whose videos have become a hit on the Internet say everyone's picking on him.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Leave Donald Trump alone. Leave Donald Trump, leave him alone. Period. Bye.

MOOS: tell that to cartoonists who can't get enough of his hair and his pursed lips.

HILL: What I really was surprised by, is the guy pouts. He is someone who has that upper chin rising and the corners of the mouth go down drooping in sadness, he's like a cross between Peter Finch on "Network" saying I'm mad as hell.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm as mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore.

HILL: And Leslie Gore saying "It's My Party" and I'll cry if I want do.


MOOS: Only in this case, IET's the Republican Party that's trying.

Jeanne Moos-- CNN.

TRUMP: Because our leaders are stupid.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I am not going to take this anymore. MOOS: New York.


COSTELLO: Thank you for joining me today. I'm Carol Costello. "AT THIS HOUR" with Berman and Bolduan starts now.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN HOST: Fact checking Donald Trump -- impossible, you say? Well, maybe. But that doesn't mean we won't try. Hear what we discovered after his 30-minute interview on CNN today.

And they're armed with rifles, camouflage and bullet proof vests and they're roaming the streets of --