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Senator Bernie Sanders Won The State of Washington; Syrians Recaptured Palmyra; Brussels' Peach March Called Off; Donald Trump, America First on Foreign Policy; North Carolina's Controversial Law; Villanova Stuns No. 1 Kansas. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired March 27, 2016 - 06:30   ET






We just won the state of Washington.


ALISON KOSIK, CNN ANCHOR: And the crowd goes crazy. Bernie Sanders breaking the news of his big win in Washington to some very happy supporters last night.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Sanders swept all three Democratic caucuses on Saturday including wins in Hawaii and Alaska. The race moves now on to Wisconsin. The Democrats and Republicans will hold primaries next Tuesday.

KOSIK: Also new this morning, Syrian forces have now recaptured the city of Palmyra from ISIS. The victory comes 10 months after the terrorist group gained control of the city and began destroying ancient ruins. The army has been chases ISIS forces out of Palmyra for the past week and dismantling the bombs they left behind.

BLACKWELL: In Brussels a peace march planned for today has been called off. Security officials fear the risk of another terror attack is too great.

Authorities in Italy arrested an Algerian national suspected of supplying fake documents to the Brussels attackers. Another man identified by Belgian authorities only as Faycal (ph) C. has been charged with terrorist murder.

Our Michael Holmes is live in Brussels with the latest there. And Michael, we still see just over your shoulder there that there is that memorial that has built. We are just a few days out since that attack, less than a week. How is the mood there this morning?

MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. It is Easter of course and Easter is well marked here in Belgium. And people have been going to church and they are starting to come down now to the Place de la Bourse behind me.

You mentioned that march, it was meant to be a big thing. The police asked people not to come out for that march. Organizers did cancel it. It does remain to be seen if a lot of o people will turn up here a little bit later. Authorities said they had security concerns because they have got so many police involved in the actual investigation and they couldn't secure the march. So you have this ironic situation where a march that was designed to show defiance to terrorists, send the message that the people won't be (INAUDIBLE) by terrorism has been called off because of fears brought about by those very terrorists which is a sad thing.

Yes. Right around the square this morning we saw military vehicles blocking vehicle access to the square. You have got the sad and strange site of armed soldiers patrolling historic streets and squares, standing guard outside cafes.

It is very quiet around here. Quieter than normal here. And businesses say they are hurting and they fear a hit to the country's tourist industry of course as summer approaches. It's fair to say people are still stunned and they are apprehensive with those suspects at large. As you say many people fear they could be another attack.

And there is also a sense of growing anger, Victor, at the security and intelligence lapses that have been revealed. We heard just overnight that a message was sent after the airport bombings to the metro to shut it down. They never got the message. So another lapse that has to be dealt with as they really overhaul the structure of counterintelligence and how they talk to each other here in Belgium, Victor.

BLACKWELL: Yes. And the worst possible response after 300 people injured. So many who were killed there and now hearing that the metro was supposed to have been shut down may be an insult to some of those families after losing or suffering in the way that they have.

Michael Holmes, we'll be back with you throughout the show. Thank you so much.

KOSIK: Belgium officials have clarified the death toll in the Brussels attacks in all 28 innocent people were killed, 14 at the airport, 14 at the metro. And three suicide bombers also died.

BLACKWELL: More than 300 people were wounded by those bombs so among them were a group of Mormon missionaries from Utah. The parents of one injured young man spoke with CNN Saima Mohsin.


SAIMA MOHSIN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Proud parents show me a photo of their family. Tears of relief and worry. Their eldest, Joseph Dresden, was at the airport check in exactly where the bomb went off. AMBER EMPEY, VICTIM'S MOTHER: He's the oldest of five kids. And he's just been my buddy since he was born, you know? From the time he was little. He just stepped up and taken care of all of us, you know. He's responsible and kind and loving and...

MOHSIN: Joseph called his parents from hospital. His voice was calm and then he sent them these photos.


AMBER EMPEY: It was devastating.

MOHSIN: He's being treated for second degree burns to his hands, face and head with surgery for shrapnel wounds on his legs.

AMBER EMPEY: It's a long trip. Yes.

MOHSIN: And when you first saw him?

AMBER EMPEY: It (ph) was (ph) amazing.

COURT EMPEY, VICTIM'S FATHER: His eyes were beautiful. And you could see through all the burns and all injuries it is still his same soul and heart in there. And he'll need some time to rehabilitate and heal on the outside. And I'm sure with his emotions as well.

AMBER EMPEY: Eyes and his smile. He's got bandages all around his face, you know, but he's got these pretty blue eyes and just (ph) thankful and excited to see us.

MOHSIN: Joseph was just a few months away from the end of his two year missionary tour to Europe when the bombing happened. He described the scene to his parents.

COURT EMPEY: It was horrifying what he went through. He remembers the blast. It knocked him out. And he -- he was very scared, and hiding. And then he went into helping those around him and looking for his -- his three missionary colleagues to help them.

MOHSIN: I asked what they thought of the terrorists?

COURT EMPEY: I don't understand it. I just know that there is so much more good and love in the world that it will always win.

MOHSIN: Joseph has more surgery and treatment to go through. His family can't take him home yet, where his brothers and sisters are anxiously waiting to see him again. Saima Mohsin, CNN Brussels.


BLACKWELL: Thanks to Saima for that story.

Next on NEW DAY, Donald Trump lays out his foreign policy plan. He's talking nuclear weapons, Israel and potential halting oil sales, Saudi Arabia. KOSIK: Also ahead. Protesters in North Carolina say a newly passed state law discriminates against transgender people and several major corporations are warning it could cost the state some big business.



BLACKWELL: America first. That is a phrase that Donald Trump likes. And comparison to his foreign policy ideas, he says it's a catchy phrase.

It's a wide ranging interview if you read it this morning in the "New York Times," Trump laid out the possibility of South Korea and Japan developing their own nuclear arsenals. Refused to say he would not spy on world leaders and he said he may use American troops for aid or humanitarian missions based on whether or not countries have been friendly to the U.S.

Let's talk more with two of our CNN political commentators. We've got "Time Warner Cable" political anchor Errol Louis with us, also a Donald Trump supporter Kayleigh McEnany.

Kayleigh, I want to start with you. Good morning to you. Errol has been with us this morning.

Kayleigh I'm going to start with you on South Korea. All right. So South Korea, Donald Trump says that he's considering possibly pulling out troops. Also considering possibly allowing them to develop their own nuclear arsenal. With Kim Jong-un to the north working to develop miniaturized nuclear weapons, does that not greatly destabilize the peninsula if a Trump administration would allow South Korea to develop their own nuclear arsenal?

KAYLEIGH MCENANY, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Look it might serve as a deterrent effect. I think it is at least worth talking about because of course, you know, we signed the nuclear non proliferation treaty but a lot has changed since 1958 -- '68 I think it was when that was signed.

You know, you have now bad actors who have acquired nuclear weapons in violation of the treaty. North Korea. You look -- and Iran many would argue is now closer to a nuclear weapon given the Obama agreement. Some would argue that.

So I think it is at least worth asking. Is it in the United States strategic interests to get some modern democracy that are our allies like Japan, like South Korea? Is it worth allowing them to develop nuclear weapons so that we have someone else there to fight back in the event of a nuclear war not just relying on the United States? It is a question worth asking. I think it's a smart thing to discuss. It is not for sure but it's at least worth putting on the table.

BLACKWELL: Let's talk about nuclear and the troops, Errol.

Counting the numbers of times U.S. military forces have -- had to engage in exercises with South Korea over the last 24 months to support them as we've seen what has happened with Kim Jong-un in North Korea, what do you think about the idea that was put forth the possibility of pulling troops from South Korea unless they pay more or commit more of their own?

ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes. It is remarkably short sighted and I think the alarm that you are going hear throughout the defense establishment, the foreign policy establishment and certainly from academics and anyone with a sense of history is that you -- it is -- it runs counter to 80 years of American foreign policy and American success to talk about not nuclearizing not only South Korea, Victor, but also Japan.

The notion that in order to save a few billion dollars over the next 24 months we should sort of set off a nuclear arms race between two nations that remain across a hostile border with a madman in the north is so reckless, is so counter to American interest that, you know, it is a discussion worth having. And I look forward to the next debate where maybe we could hear candidate Trump explain exactly why it's supposed to work, to have, you know, Saudi Arabia pay more billions of dollars and possibly destabilize that region to see it happen in Asia as well.

You know, it's a very unusual kind of an approach.


LOUIS: And so we'll give him credit for bringing something new to the debate. But again, counter to 80 years of proven success.

BLACKWELL: I'm sure that is going to come up with this town hall that's happening in Wisconsin on Tuesday here in on CNN.

Let me ask. There is a lot here Kayleigh. This is -- you know, one of the times where we're seeing Donald Trump speak at length about foreign policy. He says, this approach to some nations will be based on -- and I wrote it down here -- quote -- "how friendly they have been toward us." He'd (ph) also reconsider some American alliances if these countries are not willing to pay in cash or in troop commitments. But are there not some commitment -- some places in the world that the U.S. should be regardless of if the country is able to pay, if the country is able to commit it is just in America's interest to be in that region?

MCENANY: There are some for sure and I think, you know, Donald Trump is making the point when he says, you know, he's going to be there for nations that are friendly to us. He's going to be there for the United Kingdom. The way they were there for us when we were in need.


He's going to be there for Israel the way they have constantly been there for us. But however, I think, he's trying to make the larger point that the United States disproportionately has a footprint in the world where we give a tremendous amount -- billions and billions dollars to foreign nations and a lot of times we don't see the same level of commitment.

I don't think that means throwing allies who have been there forever under the bus but I think it does mean reassessing how much we're giving financially to NATO and having some other countries step up. Because the United States at the end of the day we can't be the police power of the world. We have to have allies step up. So I think he just wants to reassess the amounts the United States is putting and investing into the world.

BLACKWELL: But in some of these countries is it not true that the United States is there because those governments are not functional, they do not have the resources and there are shadow government, these militias that take control so the U.S. has to be there to try to keep at (ph) bay (ph) for us is that would work towards attacking us in the U.S.

So is it possible to even judge based on how much a government pays how much a government commits if that government is effectively null, if that government cannot commit or offer funds or troops?

MCENANY: Well, there are some places that the United States might have to go be, they might have to go into. You know, if other people don't step up to defeat ISIS for instance the United States might need to step in.

However it is worth look at what's happened over the last decade where we've gone in, we've toppled madmen, we've toppled dictators and we've only made ourselves weaker by doing so. So I think Donald Trump wants to look inward and for the first time put America first. That means not toppling dictators around the world. That means withdrawing where we can, putting Americans first. That means sometimes leaving a strong man in a place like Libya and not allowing ISIS to move in.

So I think that's the overarching strategy of Donald Trump's foreign policy. It is not isolationism. It is America first. We'll be there when we have to be there but at the end of the day it's got to be American lives first.

BLACKWELL: All right. We have a lot to cover and we will certainly cover more of what we're hearing from Donald Trump through this "New York Times" interview happened over the course of the day through phone calls.

Kayleigh McEnany, Errol Louis, thank you both.

Later in the next hour we'll be talking with Brian Stelter from "RELIABLE SOURCES." He has about how the media has contributed to the rise of Trump.

One element of the story we're going to talk about is this answer about Israel and a two state solution. One answer given in the morning, a different answer given in the evening. We'll talk about that with our Eric Bradner later in the show.

Also this programming note I mentioned just a few moments ago. The three remaining Republican candidates on Tuesday. They will be in Milwaukee for a CNN town hall. Prime time event will be moderated by CNN's Anderson Cooper. That's Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. Eastern right here on CNN.

KOSIK: All right, Victor. Ahead on NEW DAY, now that Bernie Sanders has swept the western caucuses this weekend what does this do for Hillary Clinton's lead? Should she be worried? We're going to talk to supporters from both campaigns straight ahead.

Plus, heated protests over a wave of anti-gay legislation in the south. What's at stake? That's next.



KOSIK: Welcome back.

Arrest and protests are continuing in North Carolina after critiques say the state legislature passed a bill that weakens anti- discrimination laws.

BLACKWELL: Here's CNN's Nick Valencia with the look at what the law changes and this outpouring of reaction to it.

NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Victor and Alison, the legislation in Georgia and North Carolina has been called anti-LGBT.

This law that was recently passed in North Carolina won't make it just difficult for the LGBT community but virtually everyone to file a workplace discrimination claim.


UNIDENTIFIED PROTESTER (ph): All these people are upset. They're angry. They have been left out of the democratic process.

VALENCIA (voice-over): This week outside of the governor's mansion in North Carolina protest and arrest.

The demonstrators are opponents to a newly passed state law that they say is devastating to the civil liberties of transgender people. The law strikes (ph) down a recently passed ordinance in Charlotte. It would have protected trans people and allowed them to select the rest room of their choice based on how they identify.

SEN. PHIL BERGER (R), NORTH CAROLINA: The adoption of the ordinance by the city council of Charlotte was just crazy.

VALENCIA: Republican lawmakers like Senate Pro Tem Phil Berger were furious at the legislation.

BERGER: Allows grown men to share bathrooms and locker facilities with girls and women.

VALENCIA: In a special session, solely to consider the bill, Republican lawmakers passed the public facilities privacy and securities act. It means transgender people in the state of North Carolina must use the restroom related to the gender on their birth certificate.

North Carolina's bill signed into law Wednesday is the latest in a string of states attempting to pass similar anti-LGBT legislation.

MIKE CRANE (R), GEORGIA STATE SENATOR: In the courtroom you are seeing folks get their religious believes persecuted against.

VALENCIA: In Georgia, the controversial bill passed by the State House and Senate is called the Free Exercise Protection Act, one of the several religious liberty bills that have surfaced across the country. Governor Nathan Deal has until May to sign it into law.

Senator Mike Crane is one of the bill's most adamant supporters.

VALENCIA (on camera): Is this legislation a direct result of what the Supreme Court did last year in legalizing same-sex marriage or gay marriage?

CRANE: I think it's a result of many things. But that was just another catalyst I believe.

VALENCIA (voice-over): But many blue chip businesses around the nation say there will be major financial consequences to Republican efforts in Georgia and North Carolina.

Disney and Marvel Studios have threatened to abandon production in Georgia if the governor signs the bill into law. The NFL says it could have an impact on whether Atlanta is selected as the host of the 2019 Super Bowl. And in North Carolina, the NBA says because of the new law it may pull the All-Star from Charlotte next year.


VALENCIA: Six major conventions have considered relocating from Georgia if the governor signs this bill into law. Atlanta's visitors and convention bureau has said the decision could cost the state up to $6 billion. And we should mention that the parent company here of CNN has joined the laundry list of big corporations to speak out against the bill. Victor, Alison.

KOSIK: You really wonder if the governor is going to think twice with all this pressure. You know, once you throw money into the picture it kind of makes someone look twice. We'll see --


BLACKWELL: That's (INAUDIBLE) Illinois and then Arkansas last year. We'll see what these two states decide.



BLACKWELL: Coming up big day out west for Bernie Sanders. Next hour, how wins in three states this is weekend affects Hillary Clinton's delegate lead and what to expect next.

KOSIK: Also ahead our coverage of the terror attacks in Brussels continuing. A peace march is canceled over security concerns and where the man hunt for the bombing suspects continues.


BLACKWELL: That was dramatic.

KOSIK: It is. I say it calls for it because it's a big ouch (ph). It was a big upset Saturday at the NCAA tournament. Both top seeds going down.

BLACKWELL: Andy Scholes has more this morning's bleacher report. It's getting close. We're getting down --

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Getting down to it. We've got six teams left. We will be final four by the end of today and yesterday not a good day to be a one seed in the tournament.

Oklahoma knocked off Oregon and then the top overall seed in the tournament, overall seed, Kansas upset by Villanova. (INAUDIBLE) a close game went down to the (INAUDIBLE). The Wildcats were actually up by three with less than 10 seconds remaining in the game.

And they had the chance to tie this one up. Guard Frank Mason know -- he ends up turning in the ball over right there. Villanova wins 64- 59. They are heading to their first final four since 2009. And while Wildcats were (INAUDIBLE) fans still trying to comprehend what just happened.

And you guys check out this tweet from Lawrence, Kansas Police Department. It said, "Sorry, we can't investigate Villanova ripping your heart out of your chest, the crime occurred outside of our jurisdiction."


That's pretty good. Now the other game is between Oklahoma and Oregon. It turned out to be the Buddy Hield show. The (INAUDIBLE) player (INAUDIBLE) 37 points on this one, eight three pointers. Oklahoma dominated the entire game (INAUDIBLE) Oregon, winning 80-68. They're going to their first Final Four, first since 2002.