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THE LEAD WITH JAKE TAPPER
Chaos Erupts As Trains Halted In Hungary; Kentucky Clerk Sent To Jail; Judge Throws Out Brady's Four-Game Suspension; CNN Film Looks At Fashion's Influence On Hip Hop. Aired 4:30-5p ET
Aired September 3, 2015 - 16:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: -- they want to continue to go on to Germany so they refused. So what's been going on now that for eight hours, the standoff here has been going on with the refugees refusing to leave that train.
They are on the platform. Sometime there is a standoff with the police. I would say there are about a hundred riot police here holding these people back.
But it really is only one of those tragic stories that goes on here as this refugee crisis continues to grow. Again, you have hundreds of people who are still stuck at the Budapest train station camping out in the open or finding whatever sort of shelter they can.
They barely have any food or water. It is something that plays out in many of these European places. One of the few countries that still taking people in is, of course, Germany, but the problem is the Hungarian government simply won't allow them to get there.
The people in that train, they're really very, very weak, they've been up for a long time. There are also a lot of children on that train as well -- Jake.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: All right, Fred Pleitgen, thank you so much for bringing us up to speed on this crisis.
In our National Lead today, she says her religious beliefs prevent her from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but a judge now ruled against this county clerk just hours ago, tossing her in jail. She now has a choice she's being told -- stay in jail or follow the law. That story is next.
TAPPER: Welcome back to THE LEAD. I'm Jake Tapper. We have some breaking news in our National Lead today. Just minutes ago, the attorney for Kim Davis, that local county clerk in Kentucky, insisted in court that she would rather stay in jail than violate her religious beliefs by issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Davis, an elected Democrat, argues that her faith forbids her from complying with the Supreme Court's ruling calling it a, quote, "Heaven or hell decision." Earlier today, a federal judge remanded Davis to the custody of U.S. marshals for refusing to abide by the law.
Let's get right to CNN's Alexandra Field live outside federal court in Ashland, Kentucky. Alex, the judge could have just fined Davis, but sent her to jail instead. What's been going on in court all day?
ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, frankly, Jake, Kim Davis looked a little stunned, some of the plaintiff's supporters also looked a little bit stunned. It was pretty clear I think to the people, who are inside the courtroom that the judge was going to hold her in contempt of court.
It was a two-hour hearing. It seems to be moving in that direction, but the surprise came really to many when the judge decided to have her remanded to the marshals in lieu of a fine. The judge really explained that the point of this contempt order was to force compliance.
He did not believe that a fine, a simple fine or a series of fines would garner the compliance he was seeking, which was to force this clerk in Roane County to issue marriage licenses to all couples who apply for marriage licenses, same-sex couples included.
To rectify the situation, he decided to put her in jail, but Jake, that was not the only major development today. After Kim Davis went off to jail, her deputy clerks were called to the stand, each of the six deputy clerks, speaking to the judge and determining for the judge whether or not they individually felt they could issue marriage licenses.
Five of the six deputy clerks said they could put their personal opinions or conflicting religious beliefs aside if that what it came to, agreeing to issue the licenses.
Then the judge asked the attorney representing Kim Davis if she could agree either to issue the licenses or to refuse, not interfere, with the issuance of licenses.
The choice apparently was simple to Kim Davis. She decided to stay in jail. Tomorrow the deputy clerks in her office will begin to issue licenses to same-sex couples.
TAPPER: Alex, this case is getting a lot of attention from Republican presidential candidates on the trail. Tell us about that.
FIELD: Yes, Ted Cruz was one of the candidates today who tweeted in support of Kim Davis. I think that the visual that we saw outside of the courtroom was really emblematic of how divisive this issue is. You had an overwhelmingly loud crowd.
They were stunned and shocked by the decision to jail her. Frankly many were angered by it. By the same token, you did have a lot of supporters of marriage equality, who came out here in support of the plaintiffs, the four couples who originally filed this class-action suit. They were here to support them. Those couples, of course, today consider this a major victory.
TAPPER: All right, Alex Field, thank you so much.
Kim Davis is represented by a group called "The Liberty Council" that describes itself as advocating for religious freedom. In response to the court's decision, the organization said that Davis is, quote, "A woman is of strong faith. All she asks is to be true to God and her conscience. This is not the kind of America the founders envision or that most Americans want."
Joining me now is the founder of Liberty Council, Matthew Staver. Mr. Staver, thanks so much for being here. So Mrs. Davis was ordered to jail. What's her reaction? Will she ever plan to start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples or allowing the deputy clerks to do so without it being held against them by her?
MATTHEW STAVER, FOUNDER AND CHAIRMAN, LIBERTY COUNCIL: Knowing Kim Davis and her strong Christian resolve and her conscience convictions, she may be jailed behind bars, but her conscience remains free and she's not going to violate her conscience.
She's asked for one simple accommodation for her faith, not just for her, but for all the other clerks in Kentucky that are similarly situated. That is, remove her name and title from the marriage certificates.
That's all she's asking for. She'll issue the certificates, but she doesn't want her name and title on it, because that is in her understanding and mind is authorizing something that is contrary to her Christian values and convictions, authorizing it contrary to God's design for marriage.
That's where the conscience rub is. The clerks association has actually recommended that same remedy for all the clerks. That would be the simple fix. Rather than jail, Kim Davis who has been a faithful servant of the people -- the judge could simply just order the marriage licenses to remove her name and title and that would solve the matter.
[16:40:01] TAPPER: As you know the Supreme Court in the 2006 free speech case, ruled that, quote, "When a citizen enters government service, the citizen by necessity must accept certain limitations on his or her freedom."
I know this case is a little different, but doesn't the same legal framework apply, this notion that this is the law of the land? She's a government employee. She's not a church employee and she's obligated to comply with the high court's ruling on same-sex marriage.
STAVER: Certainly there is a limitation. On the other hand the Supreme Court has said repeatedly you don't shed your constitutional rights because you have a public employee or accept public benefits.
In this particular case, it's very clear she still has that protection of the first amendment, the Kentucky constitution and the Kentucky religious freedom restoration act. So the real question in this case is does she have opportunities for accommodation? Everyone admits and acknowledges she has sincere beliefs that there's a collision of these beliefs, and how can we now accommodate it? That's the real question. Can the government accommodate it? If it's yes, then they ought to. If it's no, then that's a different story.
TAPPER: What if it's no, just to play devil's advocate, and I don't mean that literally, but what if it's no? And the answer from the government is, Kim Davis, just go get another job?
STAVER: Well, if it's no, and it's really no and there's absolutely no alternative opportunity for accommodation, then obviously that's the end of the story. But in this case, the government has to choose the least restrictive means.
Is there any way that the government's interests can be accommodated and not trample on his conviction of conscience? The answer is very clear. All she's asked is one simple request. Take her name off the certificate, have it under the commonwealth of Kentucky, but don't put her name on it.
She'll record it, she says, just like she records other things, but she can't have her name authorizing it. That's a simple, easy request that even the clerks association has recommended.
TAPPER: I hear you on that. What do you make of the criticisms of her in the sense that she has been married four times, divorced three times, and here she is trying to uphold the sanctity of marriage? How do you respond to those criticisms or do you think it's just a cheap shot?
STAVER: I think it's a cheap shot. They don't understand her past. Four and a half years ago her life was dramatically changed when her mother-in-law died on Sunday morning and asked one thing of him, just attend church one time. She did that Sunday evening.
There she heard about a God who loved her and gave himself for her and gives free forgiveness and grace, and she can't -- and it broke her, it changed her, she's a different person than she was four and a half years ago.
And consequently, yes, she acknowledged she makes lots of mistakes. She's played in the devil's playground. She's not proud of that, but four and a half years ago, her life was changed, her sins were forgiven.
That is the reason why her conscience is so strong. She loves her Lord, loves God and she can't disobey her conscience or be disobedient. That really is what makes Kim Davis tick.
TAPPER: Mathew Staver, thank you so much for being here, for answering our questions. We appreciate it.
STAVER: Thank you, my pleasure.
TAPPER: When we come back, Tom Brady wins again after a judge tosses out his four-game suspension, but the battle between the Patriots quarterback and the NFL is not over.
Plus it's more than just pats fans smiling today. It means a lot of extra cash for some. We'll explain, next.
TAPPER: Welcome back to THE LEAD. The Sports Lead now, as I understand it there are only three things certain in this world, death, taxes, and Tom Brady's enchanted life.
Today to the jubilation of Pats fans and some fantasy football and general managers everywhere, a judge tossed out Brady's entire four- game suspension over deflate-gate, but this is not yet over. Just minutes ago, the NFL filed an appeal in response to today's ruling.
Let's get right to CNN sports anchor, Rachel Nichols. Rachel, good to see you as always. So he came out clean, how did the judge come to this decision?
RACHEL NICHOLS, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Well, let's make it clear. This is not a referendum on whether Tom Brady did or not participated in a scheme to deflate footballs. We really don't know for use about that one way or another.
This case was about evaluating Roger Goodell's punishment process, and the judge made it clear in no certain terms today, he feels Roger Goodell abused his power as commissioner of the NFL in prosecuting Tom Brady.
And there is a laundry list of reasons the judge states as why. Some of them is withholding a witness during the appeals process, one of them is escalating the charges against Brady even without any new evidence.
But basically what he says and I quote, "The commissioner distributed his own, quote, "brand of industrial justice." He comes out there and says he can't make it up as you go along, I'm throwing this suspension out.
But as you note, Jake, this is far from over. The NFL is appealing. This new appeals court, these cases can take anywhere from six months to two or three years to adjudicate. We could be talking about this for a long time.
TAPPER: Yes, that's three more Patriots Super Bowl victories away. This is another huge loss for the commissioner, though.
NICHOLS: Yes, look, there have been a number of these court cases, five in a row to be exact. This is starting to pile up. If this was an NFL coach that had gone 0 and 5, we would be sitting here talking about is he on the hot seat?
Roger Goodell not on the hot seat for his job, at least it doesn't appear that way. There may be hundreds of millions of football fans who are sitting there today saying this guy has egg on his face, this is so embarrassing. I can't believe this.
But the only people who really matter are those 32 NFL owners. We know one of them, Robert Kraft is not so happy with Goodell right now, but many of the other 31 have come out in recent weeks in support of Roger Goodell.
[16:50:01] So is this going to affect Roger Goodell's ability to govern, his sense of authority? We'll have to see, but is he going to lose his job? That's unlikely from what we've seen so far.
TAPPER: Rachel Nichols, thank you so much. Be sure to tune into a pro-football preview special co-hosted by Rachel and quarterback, Dan Marino. That airs right here on CNN Sunday at 3:30 p.m. Eastern.
In our Money Lead, Tom Brady's win is not just a win for him, but also for the Patriots, those cheap tickets to the first home games? Yes, those disappeared just as the suspension before the ruling was handed down.
Tickets for the season opener were sold on Stub Hub for a median price of about $387, but the ones that are listed for sale jumped to nearly $500 within an hour of the Brady decision.
Meanwhile, what was once the last game of the Brady's suspension, the Patriots versus the Cowboys, already shaping to be the hottest tickets in the NFL this season.
Coming up, he was just a few years out of high school when he founded one of the biggest fashion brands of the time. Next, the star of "Shark Tank" talks about the revolution he helped start.
TAPPER: Today's Pop Culture Lead is a true throwback Thursday. The evolution of hip-hop influenced by fashion documented in a CNN film called "Fresh Dressed" airs tonight. In 1979 started it all or so legend has it.
The Sugar Hill Gang kept the bell bottom disco crowd moving. I could listen to that for the next 20 minutes. Run DMC then put Adidas on the map in the '80s. Fast forward to the '90s, and an explosion of big name brands like "Cross Colors and Rock Aware created by Jay-Z.
And of course one of the biggest fashion brands ever. I want to bring in Daymond John. He helped create the '90s brand, Fubu. You may recognize him as a main investor on the hit show "Shark Tank." Damon, thank you so much for being here. It's quite an honor to have you.
DAYMOND JOHN, PRESIDENTIAL AMBASSADOR FOR GLOBAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP: Thank you for having me.
TAPPER: Fubu came along in the early '90s and at the time artists such as Dre by nature were hot. This was also when teens started wearing the baggy clothes with brand names prominently stitched across the rear and other places. Did you know then this would be more than a fad, this would go mainstream?
JOHN: I didn't know that then, but at that time we thought of it almost like what they call today a disruptive technology. It was, you know, a time when the kids would start to communicate through this music called hip-hop.
And along with that came a way to dress, a way to walk, a way to talk and I couldn't carry less if it was a fad. I was so caught up in it. It was the only thing I could think of.
TAPPER: And you say you started a business when you couldn't find a reasonably priced tie hat that you saw in the music video, and now we see malls lined with throwback styles, did you have any idea this would last two decades?
JOHN: Absolutely not. I figured that hopefully I would have a hat and my friends and partner would keep calling, maybe a boutique and have it for about ten years, and then we would grow up and start making more -- I know the evolution of fashion would sooner or later go to another level, and I didn't think that "fresh dressed" and hip hop and the way this whole lifestyle would just last the way it is. It's just amazing.
TAPPER: And now you're the model of respectability. Earlier this year, President Obama selected you as a presidential ambassador for global entrepreneurship. What does that mean?
JOHN: Being an ambassador means that I have three pillars of obligation. Number one is to domestically and internationally explain to people how they can empower themselves, number one, as entrepreneurs.
Number two, give them access to capital and information. Number three, inspire them and be a beacon of light to show people that they can open their smartphone and have a business just like that instead of these other individuals that are preying on the youth.
The fact that they may not have any hope and asking them to join, you know, certainly type of organizations that may not be in the best interest of mankind and everything else. Just like me, a kid from the streets become somebody who can also hire, employ other people and change lives.
TAPPER: On "Shark Tank" and in your regular life, you hear pitches all the time. I would be remiss if I didn't ask about a pitch that we are hearing now from a fellow entrepreneur New York businessman, the Republican frontrunner, Donald Trump. What do you think about the sales job he is doing?
JOHN: The sales job, I think polls are showing that the sales job is great, but as for me, listen, I grew up in Hollis Queens. There were two places to work, Belmont and Aqueduct. I'm watching this horse race from all the back. The sales job that he's doing, it seems to be working at the moment.
TAPPER: All right, thank you so much. We really appreciate your time.
Don't miss the CNN film "Fresh Dressed," it airs tonight at 10:00 eastern right here on CNN.
And an important reminder, you can watch the next Republican presidential rate right here on CNN coming up on Wednesday, September 16th at the Reagan Library. I'm moderating and I am looking for your questions for the candidates. Please tweet them using #cnndebate or go to Facebook/CNNdebate.
Before we go, please allow me say nine years ago today I made the very best decision of my life. Happy anniversary to my wife, Jennifer. That's it for THE LEAD. I'm Jake Tapper. Turning you over now to Brianna Keilar, subbing for Wolf Blitzer in "THE SITUATION ROOM." Thanks for watching.