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Clinton Slams Trump Over Taxes In New Ad; Trump Denies Posing As Publicist; White House: Let Students Choose; Official: ISIS Declares State Of Emergency In Raqqa; Trump On His Tax Rate: "None Of Your Business"; Stone Tombs alongside Mastodon Bones Discovered; Models Getting Ripped Off by Industry. Aired. Aired 8-9a ET

Aired May 14, 2016 - 08:00   ET


[08:00:02] VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: We've got that coming up for you.

CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome to Saturday, to your weekend. We're so grateful for your company as always. I'm Christi Paul.

BLACKWELL: You've been pushing yourself every day to get to Saturday. You made it. I'm Victor Blackwell. Good to have you with us.

PAUL: Listen, we want to begin this morning with this brand new ad from Hillary Clinton slamming Donald Trump for not releasing his tax returns. Here's what interesting about this ad. You do not hear her voice. You do not see her image. She is nowhere to be found.

BLACKWELL: Nowhere in it. This is after bizarre revelations that he, Donald Trump, posed as his own publicist years ago. Of course, all of this, just as things seemed to be going his way, met with House Speaker Paul Ryan, that went well, a big push to get Republican leaders in Washington to back him that went well, but watch this.


BLACKWELL (voice-over): Donald Trump taking a hit from Hillary Clinton in a new video that asks, why won't he release his taxes?

JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST, "THE LEAD": He will not follow the example of every single Democratic and Republican presidential nominee since 1976.

BLACKWELL: But the billionaire, he's not budging.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (via telephone): When the audit ends, I'm going to present them. That should be before the election. I hope it is before the election.

BLACKWELL: Sounding down right defiant.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What is your tax rate?

TRUMP (via telephone): It's none of your business. You'll see it when I release, but I fight very hard to pay as little tax as possible.

BLACKWELL: He's not required to release his taxes but --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Mr. Trump has got to make a decision sooner rather than later about whether or not to release his tax returns.

BLACKWELL: Then there's this voice from the past.

SUE CARSWELL: What's your name again?

"JOHN MILLER": John Miller.

BLACKWELL: That sounds a lot like the voice from the present.

TRUMP: We are going to start winning, winning, winning.

BLACKWELL: What do you hear? Trump dodge by questions about whether he had posed as imaginary staffers to deal with reporters' questions about his love life and his personal drama. Listen to this "People" magazine interview uncovered by "The Washington Post" about his break- up with Marla Maples.

SUE CARSWELL: What kind of comment is coming from your agency or from Donald?

"JOHN MILLER": Well, it just that he really decided that he wasn't -- you know, he didn't want to make a commitment. He's coming out of a marriage and he's starting to do tremendously well financially.

BLACKWELL: Trump has admitted to using a pseudonym in the past, but he says the voice on that call was not his.

TRUMP (via telephone): No, I don't anything about it. You're telling me about it for the first time and it doesn't sound like my voice at all. I have many, many people that are trying to imitate my voice. You can imagine that. This sounds like one of the scams, one of the many scams. It doesn't sound like me.

BLACKWELL: But there is some evidence that the presumptive GOP nominee is settling in as a party leader. When his former long-time butler argued on Facebook that President Obama, quote, "should have been taken out by our military and shot as an enemy agent," Team Trump acted fast to say, "we totally and completely disavow the horrible statements by him regarding the president."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Donald Trump did the right thing by disavowing that statement and distancing himself from it.


BLACKWELL: All right. Let's bring in Ashley Bell, a Republican delegate and former commissioner for Hall County, Georgia and Simone Perry of the Tea Party Patriots. Good to have both of you here.

I want to start here with a little more of the ad we had in the top of that story about taxes. Let's watch.


TRUMP: Maybe I'm going to do the tax returns when Obama does his birth certificate.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: The state of Hawaii released my official long form birth certificate.

TRUMP: If I'd like to run for office I'll produce my tax returns. Absolutely.

I am officially running for president of the United States.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Getting any closer to releasing your tax returns?

TRUMP: Well, I'm thinking about it. I can't do it until the audit is finished.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The audit is no excuse. The IRS has made it very clear than an audit is not a bar to public release. It's entirely your choice.


BLACKWELL: So the ad is clear, the ad is accurate. Ashley, I'm going to start with you. Why isn't he releasing these taxes and should he?

ASHLEY BELL, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Transparency is key for anyone running for president. So Hillary Clinton should know that better than anyone. When will she release her transcripts from Goldman Sachs --

BLACKWELL: I'm going to bring you back to the topic of the conversation, when is he going to release his taxes and should he?

BELL: He should. He really should. The standard should be equal on both sides. Hillary should release hers. He should release his, taxes, transcripts all of that. People need to know. We want to make sure if you're going to be president that you are going to maintain that level of transparency throughout the term in office.

BLACKWELL: OK, let me come to you, Simone, on taxes.

SIMONE PERRY, TEA PARTY PATRIOTS: Sure. I'm impressed that he's managed to break a campaign promise prior to being elected. I think that's pretty outdone for him, but I don't think that this is so much a conservative issue. I think it's a general transparency issue.

And I also think in general we're going to see something that he doesn't want us to see on his tax returns. There's the potential for (inaudible) foreign investments, contributions to Democrats which you know that he's done, but maybe we don't know the extent. And I think there's definitely a reason why he wants to postpone that.

BLACKWELL: He has pointed reporters to his financial disclosure form found with the FEC says that that's all people need to know. [08:05:05]But of course, there are more details that come from a tax return. I want to read back to you, Simone, something you told "The Washington Post" and get the two of you to discuss it.

You told them, "We can no longer claim to be the party of freedom," speaking about Republicans, "when we nominate a fascist and we can't be the party of opportunity if we decide a racist can represent our values." Donald Trump a fascist and a racist?

PERRY: Absolutely. I mean, a fascist is just anyone who believes that executive order and their ability to run their own legislation is better than the constitution, better than Congress, better than checks and balances.

So Donald Trump I think is indisputably interested in serving his own interests. He has an agenda that is entirely his own. That makes him a fascist by definition. I would say that his a racist, but I'd also say that he is a bigot and I don't think that we should limit his discrimination to solely color because it extends to gender as well.

BLACKWELL: Ashley, fascist, racist, bigot, you say you're going to support the nominee. It looks like the nominee will be Donald Trump. How do you defend him against those charges?

BELL: You know, I don't. I don't. I look at it this way. Donald Trump has a record and I hope that he learns to be a better public servant. As a businessman, he's got a different criteria for how he can live his life.

But I like the fact that he met with our speaker of the House so could understand. We understand you have a lot of ideas, but you got to balance that against the constitution.

You got to balance that against leaders in the House and the Senate. You just can't go and say you're going to ban all Muslims and not think about the constitutional issues there or how Congress plays a role in that.

We don't need just a CEO of America. We need a president who understands his role in the constitution.

BLACKWELL: Of course, all of these -- the tax call, this recording of who he says is not him, this John Miller person is coming out and these can be small things or grow into a larger narrative.

But when I asked you about if you defend him against being a fascist, racist, and bigot? You said, you don't. Do you believe the Republican Party is nominating a fascist, racist, bigot?

BELL: Look, I don't know Donald Trump personally so I'm not going to say he's a racist or a bigot. Because here's the thing, if he really is this historical racist, this historical bigot and has been his whole life then how do you explain Hillary Clinton taking money from him?

You know, Hillary Clinton took money from a fascist, racist, bigot, you know, ten years ago. He's funded some of her initiatives, one of his biggest supporters. So I doubt even Hillary Clinton is going to say that she knows Donald Trump to be that because that's one of her supporters.

BLACKWELL: Let me ask you. This is something that has been discussed and has not been ruled out. The possibility of a third party conservative, someone who excite the base and help those down ballot races. Do you believe that that is something -- is there credible effort anywhere in the country?

PERRY: There's a huge credible effort on two different fronts. Not only for a third party candidate, but there's still the possibility that we can elect a different Republican in a contested convention.

And there's a ground swell of people who are still never Trump, still conservative, still Republican that go from grassroots activists to very high profile right wing donors.

BLACKWELL: Are you still never Trump?

PERRY: Absolutely.

BLACKWELL: And you're going to support the nominee?

BELL: I always with Marco Rubio, didn't work out, but I always agreed, you support the nominee.

BLACKWELL: But do you do so begrudgingly?

BELL: I'm working on it.

BLACKWELL: Working on it. All right, until next time. Simone Perry, Ashley Bell, thank you both.

PERRY: Thank you.

BELL: Thank you.

BLACKWELL: All right, Christi.

PAUL: All righty, and just about 50 minutes, guess who's going to be coming at you. One Mr. Michael Smerconish, host of his show "SMERCONISH," which airs next hour.

Michael, it's so good to see you and I'm interested in one of the guests that you have coming on because we've been talking about this person who taped the Trump publicist interview and you're talking to her.

MICHAEL SMERCONISH, CNN HOST, "SMERCONISH": Sue Carswell is going to be my guest in less than an hour, Christi, and I'm very eager to hear this story from her perspective. Look, she figured out very quickly that John Miller was in fact Donald Trump.

And she wrote that in her story and then there was a follow-up story which confirms that Donald Trump himself apologized. So it begs the question, why this week did he deny it?

And there's something else that interests me about this story and that is the tape. She did not put this tape in play. So where did the tape come from? I'm going to ask her. There's an interesting theory that we're going to develop.

PAUL: I'm wondering -- I just want your take on this. What is the value, do you think, Michael, of looking back at a candidate and what they did 25 or 30 years ago? Because I think a lot of us look at ourselves and say I'm glad I'm not who I was when I was in my 20s, but why is it so relevant in these conversations?

SMERCONISH: Listen, when I was 12 and 13, I used to call the local drugstore and ask if they had Prince Albert in a can but I was 12 or 13. I was not a 44-year-old father of three who today wants to be president of the United States.

If he had said yesterday, if he had said well, yes, it was me and I was caught up in a nasty domestic situation and I was trying to play this thing out, we wouldn't be having this conversation.

PAUL: So the onus is the fact that he did not own up to it?

SMERCONISH: I think so. I think that if he had we wouldn't be having this conversation, but you know, is it possible that it's a misdirection? Because we're also consumed with this, we're talking a little bit less about the tax returns, we're talking a little bit less about the butler.

I mean, what a week it's been for Donald Trump. It started off with such promise and it ends with a lot of Republicans scratching their heads and saying maybe I don't want to have a reproachment with him.

[08:10:09]PAUL: Yes, and I'm wondering, what do you think Paul Ryan is thinking at this moment? As they seemed to have made progress and now we are seeing all this the last 24 hours.

SMERCONISH: Well, I think you've really just ask the critical question because it seemed midweek like Ryan was inching closer to getting on the Trump bandwagon and you have to believe that he wakes up this Saturday morning, pays attention to CNN, re-evaluates what's transpired and says, what do the next several months hold? I mean, every day is a different land mine and surprise with this guy. Do I really want to attach my credibility to him?

PAUL: All righty. Michael Smerconish, always appreciate you. Thank you for taking the time absolutely.


PAUL: And do not forget to catch "SMERCONISH" immediately following this show in just about 50 minutes at 9 a.m. Eastern right here on CNN.

BLACKWELL: There is of course this emotional battle over gender identity now entering public schools. Some lawmakers a parents are downright angry over White House guidelines allowing transgender students to use any rest room they choose.

Also a new discovery, this is fascinating, you want to stay with us for this. That could change the foundation of what we know about American history.

Plus what TSA says they're doing to fix long security lines. Some passengers are waiting two hours, some even longer.


PAUL: Well, the White House is raising the stakes in this battle over public bathrooms. The administration telling school districts they have a choice. Allow transgender students to choose which rest room to use or face the consequences.

BLACKWELL: This is from a joint letter the Departments of Education and Justice issue. These new guidelines come to all public schools. The message is clear, fall in line or potentially lose federal funding, but some states are putting up a fight.

CNN's Nick Valencia is here with us. And Nick, there's some strong moves coming from officials.

[08:15:08]NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Certainly strong words and this is the most detail that we've seen from the federal government since this conversation about transgender bathroom use began back in March with the introduction of House Bill 2 in North Carolina.

This turned into a national conversation and now with this letter that Victor and Christie were just talking about it is a national issue.

We've already seen many governors come out and tell their school districts not to enact these new guidelines, not to follow the new rules. School districts and schools are seemingly caught in the middle.


LT. GOVERNOR DAN PATRICK (R), TEXAS: We will not yield to blackmail from the president of the United States.

VALENCIA (voice-over): The federal government calls them guidelines. But several states, including Texas, see them more as a threat.

PATRICK: This goes against the values of so my people. It has nothing to do with anyone being against a transgender child.

VALENCIA: At a Friday morning press conference, Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick says a line has been crossed by the federal government after the Department of Justice sent a letter on transgender bathroom use in public schools across the United States.

PATRICK: I'm telling all the superintendents in Texas right now, you have about three weeks left of the school year. Do not enact this policy. VALENCIA: In the letter, Attorney General Loretta Lynch writes, "There is no room in our schools for discrimination of any kind, including discrimination against transgender students on the basis of their sex."

Under the guidelines, public schools that receive federal money are obligated to treat students consistent with their gender identity, even if their records indicate a different sex.

Access sex segregated facilities consistent with a student's gender identity and protect a student's privacy related to their transgender status.

The action sets the stage for a legal battle that's been in the making since March. House Bill 2 in North Carolina began the recent controversy.

The law requires trans people to use the public restroom related to the gender on their birth certificate not how they identify.

Candis Cox has been one of the most outspoken against the law. She's a transgender woman and has met with the North Carolina governor.

CANDIS COX, TRANSGENDER ACTIVIST: The fact that we are not talking about transgender people and who they are, but rather we don't want someone who "looks" like a man or "looks" like a woman but identifies as the opposite gender. It lets me know that we are still discriminating on aesthetics.

VALENCIA: North Carolina and the feds have traded accusations and lawsuits. Some states, including Arkansas and Texas, insist there's been government overreach. The feds say civil rights have been violated.

GOVERNOR PAT MCCRORY (R), NORTH CAROLINA: This is not just a North Carolina issue. This is now a national issue.


VALENCIA: You hear there from Governor Pat McCrory in North Carolina. Late Friday he issued a statement which read in part, "Most Americans including this governor of North Carolina believe that the government is searching for a solution to a problem that is yet to be defined."

He wants the U.S. Congress and federal courts to intervene. A lot of steadfast believes in this issue. You have one side thinking that you're making exceptions for a very small group, very small percentage.

The United Nations saying only 15 million transgender people in the world. You have transgender community saying you're looking at us for not who we are but what we look like. So there is a lot of controversies surrounding this issue.

PAUL: No doubt about it. Thank you so much. We appreciate it, Nick.

VALENCIA: Thanks, guys.

PAUL: ISIS under siege and issuing a state of emergency. CNN is live inside Syria where the terror group is scrambling its fighters inside its self-declared capital of Raqqa.

BLACKWELL: And TSA is taking action after travelers get stuck in long security lines and missed their flights for some of them. How they plan to help the situation.

PAUL: It's a discovery that's been buried for thousands of years and it could change what we know about early North American history.



PAUL: New this morning, a lot of people wondering, could ISIS be in a state of emergency? Because the Pentagon says they have seen new evidence the terror group is scrambling right now inside its self- declared capital of Raqqa, Syria, possibly preparing for a siege.

BLACKWELL: This comes after U.S. backed forces have started to surround the ISIS strong hold helping to cut off supply lines in recent months.

CNN senior international correspondent, Fred Pleitgen is in Damascus and joins us on the phone with more details.

So do we know if, Fred, the decision to try to surround these cities and close off their supply lines directly led to what is being considered the state of emergency?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (via telephone): It's not clear, Victor, but certainly the U.S. says that they have indications that that could very well be the case.

This could also be the result generally of ISIS losing a lot of ground on the battlefield and also the fact that they seem to be very much afraid of the air power that the U.S. and its allies bring to the table.

The latest that we're getting is that apparently inside of Raqqa, what ISIS is doing is it's covering certain key buildings that they have, where they have fighters, where they have others for (inaudible) trying to cover those with (inaudible) to maybe shield them against airstrikes or at least the drones that are flying overhead.

And also that they seem to be digging trenches in and around the Raqqa area possibly getting ready for a siege there. The general feeling that the U.S. has is that the ISIS fighters are definitely feeling the effect of U.S. air power.

That they're definitely trying to prepare to get away from U.S. air strikes. Also that they're feeling the encroachment from two sides because on the one side mostly Kurdish led people and then from the other hand you have the forces as well. But the feeling is that ISIS at this point is definitely feeling the heat. They're definitely already lost a lot of ground and that they seem to be preparing for some sort of attack.

And whether they call it a state of emergency is unclear, but it seems as though they certainly are preparing for something that would definitely look like a state of emergency as they continue to lose ground there in that part of Syria, their self-declared capital -- Victor.

BLACKWELL: All right, we'll continue to watch it. Fred Pleitgen, thanks so much.

Donald Trump says his tax rate is none of your business, and he may not release his tax returns before the November election. Will the pressure though continue to build?

[08:25:00]PAUL: Also, it is the largest volcano eruption in Costa Rica in several years. Look at this video. The moment lava, ash and rocks blast from this volcano. We'll talk more about it. Stay with us.


BLACKWELL: Donald Trump says his tax rate is none of your business and unlike prior presidential candidates of the last four decades, he has no plans to release his tax returns, not until the IRS has completed their audit which could be after the elections in November.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What is your tax rate?

TRUMP (via telephone): It's none of your business. You'll see it when I release, but I fight very hard to pay as little tax as possible.


PAUL: All right. Let's bring in CNN money correspondent, Cristina Alesci. So Cristina, I know that you've done -- there's an investigative report on this. You've been looking into this whole thing and there's some inconsistencies between the statement that he hopes the IRS completes the audit before the election and then there was this letter that his lawyers sent out. What are you finding?

CRISTINA ALESCI, CNN MONEY CORRESPONDENT: Right. I think it's important to remind viewers that Donald Trump's story on his taxes and why he will and when he will release them has changed throughout the months.

At the end of last year, beginning of this year, he seemed to suggest that first he would release them when Hillary Clinton released her e- mails. Then in January, he said he -- everything was beautiful and he was working on, you know, releasing his taxes.

And then we get this audit excuse, which is an excuse because there's nothing legally that prevents him from releasing his tax returns.

And then in March, his lawyers sent out this letter that says even his tax returns that were closed, the ones that are not under audit between 2002 and 2008 should not be released.

[08:30:00] It was a letter from his lawyers to the candidate saying we advise you not to release these because activities in these are essentially continuing into the ones that are being audited.

So it seemed to suggest and I took the letter to several of my sources who said legalese wise, if you read between the lines, this seems to suggest that the candidate never wants to release any tax information.

And, of course, you guys have been talking about this all morning. But this really breaks, you know, with the last 30 or 40 years of presidential candidates releasing their tax information.

So it's a real issue here, because not only is he -- not only is he presenting this audit excuse, but it's also a changing, evolving story from, you know, I'm not going to release my taxes to, you know, I hope this audit wraps up by November.

PAUL: Yes. Cristina Alesci, thank you so much for the update there.

And we should point out that this is also the topic for Hillary Clinton's latest ad that was just released a few hours ago and we're going to be talking about that in a little bit as well.

This summer travel season as you know is beginning to ramp up. You're probably making your plans to get away, but some airports are experiencing humongous wait times to get through security.

Look at some of these lines. These are some folks in Atlanta who had to stand in line for up to two hours yesterday.

BLACKWELL: Well, to deal with the problem, the TSA is stepping up the hiring and training of more than 750 additional screeners, but travelers -- I mean, we should still -- we should all still expect longer than usual wait times at security check points.

Let's go to our Rachel Crane. She is at La Guardia Airport in New York.

And, Rachel, I understand you just got some new information from the airlines.

What have you learned?

RACHEL CRANE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, we heard from American Airlines that just yesterday, they actually held five flights in Dallas waiting for 77 passengers who were held up because of these long wait times.

And you know, here at La Guardia Airport right now, the wait is nothing like the lines we've seen all across the country in cities like Chicago and Atlanta and Phoenix. Passengers waiting hours to get through security.

Now, the TSA is aware of the problem. And as you pointed out, they're hiring more than 750 new agents. The problem is, those agents don't come on board until mid July.

And you know, with summer right around the corner, fuel prices dropping, ticket prices dropping. We can expect that this problem, it's probably going to get a lot worse before it gets any better.

And just the other day, the secretary of Homeland Security urged the American public to have appropriate expectations when they're heading to the airport this summer.

BLACKWELL: All right. Rachel Crane for us there at La Guardia Airport.

Rachel, thanks so much.

PAUL: Take a look at this video. It is just amazing, isn't it? This is out of Costa Rica. And what you're looking at is a volcano erupting. The University of Costa Rica has a thermal imaging camera at the top of the volcano there. So this volcano began erupting, Thursday. It continues to spew rocks, ash and lava.

The debris from the eruption temporarily closed the international airport while crews cleared the runways. Experts say this is the biggest eruption in Costa Rica in several years.

BLACKWELL: We're learning more about a major discovery, a scientific discovery in Florida. Only five settlements in North and South America are older than this sight found outside of Tallahassee.

What that means for what we thought we knew about the history of North America.


[08:37:25] PAUL: 37 minutes past the hour. So hidden for nearly 15,000 years, there's a new discovery that's changing what we think we know about how the Americas were settled.

BLACKWELL: So there's this team at Florida State University that discovered stone tombs alongside mastodon bones. That means they've found the oldest known sight of human life in the southeastern U.S.

Consider that. Think about it for just a second.

We're joined now by Florida State University Assistant Professor Jessi Halligan.

Professor Halligan, good morning to you.


BLACKWELL: So put into just layman's-waking-up-Saturday-morning, eating of Wheaties terms, what this means, the discovery of these tools.

HALLIGAN: So these bones and artefacts show that people were in Florida 1,500 years earlier than a lot of people accept the Americas were colonized. And more importantly, a lot of us were taught that the Americas were colonized by some folks coming through an ice free corridor from Alaska through Canada into North and South America around 13,500 years ago. That's what most high school textbook say.

That ice free recorder wasn't open until 14,000 years ago. This site is 500 years older than that and in Florida, which is by any stretch of the imagination, kitty corner across the continent from Alaska. So it means we have, we really have to re-examine how and when the Americas were colonized.

BLACKWELL: So this is on its face fascinating, but when I look at the pictures and the images here, it's underwater.


BLACKWELL: Some underwater sink hole? Is that what we're looking at here?

HALLIGAN: Yes. It's a sink hole in the bottom of the Aucilla River. The people weren't, however, scuba diving 14,5000 years ago. This was a site that would have been an isolated pond about 130 miles from the coast at the time people were here, 14,5000 years ago, because sea levels were almost 300 feet lower then and Florida was nearly twice as big.

BLACKWELL: OK. So we're just learning of this this morning. As a non-archaeologist, I'm excited about this. But tell me, having discovered this, what you felt, what went through your mind when you realized the implications of this discovery.

HALLIGAN: Oh, it was so exciting. Though to be fair, we were building on research done by a number of archaeologists in the 80s and 90s who had already done some excavations at the sink hole. They found a tusk with human made. They said cut marks, but it wasn't widely accepted by the archaeological community so we were actually there to re-evaluate their claims.

[08:40:15] And so finding the stone knife that we discovered really showed that they had been correct. The stone knife, there's absolutely no way that could be made by nature, where as some people had proposed that the marks on the cuts could have been caused by elephants and by elephants I mean mastodons stomping around on the tusk.

Later on, our knife showed that there's no way that wasn't done by people. So we -- it wasn't that we lucked into this layer. We were really building on some previous research, but that being said, I don't think any of us slept the night that we found it.

Everybody was very, very, very excited and it's been so rewarding to get to work in that sink and find these things. BLACKWELL: Well, I imagine you all were very excited. Assistant professor at Florida State University. Let me get that right. Florida State University because you can't mess those.

HALLIGAN: No, you cannot.

BLACKWELL: Professor Jessi Halligan, thanks so much for sharing the information, the discovery and the excitement with us this morning.

HALLIGAN: Thanks for having me.


PAUL: So you know, it may look like a glamorous way to make a living. Some models say they are getting ripped off.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would never let my son or daughter become a model.


PAUL: Bogus fee, soaring commissions, withheld pay, model say they are sick of getting ripped off by the industry. We'll have more in a moment.


[08:45:20] BLACKWELL: Models are typically seen in front of the camera, on stage, they're in the spotlight, but they are rarely heard.

Well, CNN Money goes behind-the-camera to get their story now.

PAUL: Yes. And their story means allegations of exorbitant fees, sky-high commissions, virtually no labor protections. But agencies say investing in fresh faces is risky and they are hired by the models, not the other way around.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's like this assembly line of young, skinny, white, mostly blond girls. Younger versions of me and they use them up and they spit them out.

There's so many cases of labor abuse. It's going to take a civil rights movement.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These are businesses. They're not set up for the purpose of trying to allure attractive men or women for some type of ulterior motive.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's a hidden part of the industry. You know, you're so in the camera, but at the same time, the reality of what's behind the camera is not known.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We were their friends. We were their protectors and many of the modelling agents would let them down.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was attracted to the industry at first because I saw it as a place where there were a lot of creative, talented, smart women. And it's, I think, a business that should empower women, not exploit them.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't think they're being exploited. I think they're coming to New York to enhance their careers.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The business model of a modelling agency is to take the risk on these young models, you invest in them and if those girls start to work, they start to make money.

Let's just say it's $5,000 for an 8-hour day. Off the top of that $5,000, the model pays the agency 20 percent. So that's $1,000.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Often models will be charged a lot of fees in addition to the commission, so that might be for the model apartment, for comp cards, for messenger services.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It might seem like, oh, it's a dollar here, it's a dollar there, but when you add it up it's thousands of dollars.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: These are a lot of the different financial statements. I can't even understand what more than half of these items are.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Looks like I got my hair done for $75. I don't know what 68 degrees was. And then of course they take their commission.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There's years where you can make $5,000. And then other years where you could make $200,000.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These are all incidentals. And I'll tell you, if you ad all these costs up, they'll be minuscule. Why would any agency spend money trying to cultivate somebody's career and at the same time try to exploit them and make money off extravagant expenses?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't think that it would be the end of the business to expect agencies to be financially transparent. We're not asking for very much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would never let my son or daughter become a model.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's a business which is self-regulated, but for the most part, is very clean.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If you're constantly finding a new, like, 22- year-old who just sees like bright lights and isn't going to ask questions, it's very easy to perpetuate this and then they go away. They go back to Oklahoma, and they ship the next girl in.


PAUL: So not just stolen pay and extra fees they're talking about, but even sexual harassment and months without a paycheck.

We are talking to one of the men you saw there as well as a model. And our guests next say that this is part of the modelling industry. There's often no one to turn to, though, for help and that could be one of the biggest problems.


[08:52:47:] PAUL: Allegations by "CNN Money" has found the vast majority of professional models are poorly paid, even on high profile photo shoots and they often endure abuse and harassment on the job with few legal protections.

Well, that has led to a proposed class action lawsuit against some of the biggest modelling agencies in the world. Attorney Robert Hantman who represents both agencies and models is with us now.

Mr. Hantman, thank you so much for being with us.

I want to ask you about this class action lawsuit against modelling agencies. What do young women in this industry need to prove to make some headway with that lawsuit?

ATTY. ROBERT HANTMAN, REPRESENTS AGENCIES AND MODELS: Frankly, they'd have to prove that their employees, which is ridiculous, because to be an employee you have to know who you're going to work for, how much you're going to get paid, how long you're going to work. And in the model industry, the models do not work for the agencies. They work for third parties. Whether it's Chanel, Prada, Clairol, Revlon, so that's number one. If they're not employees, I don't think the case would stand.

Number two, all the damages they're alleging, each is different for every different agency. Every agency has different contracts, there's different rates and there's different commissions that are paid.

PAUL: You have said that this is a self-regulated industry. Do you think that needs to change? Are you seeing abuses of some of your models that you're representing?

HANTMAN: Well, listen, quite frankly, in any industry, there's certain abuses and our firm has gone after agencies where there were abuses.


PAUL: But you do -- it does exist?

HANTMAN: Well, in every industry something exists. But I think I have to clarify something that most of the people you've interviewed were with other than major known agencies.

I think what a model should do to protect himself or herself is use the media. Go to Google. Find out what agency you may be represented by, and whether they've had problems and I think you'll find the major agencies don't have the kind of problems, which you've been promoting on your piece.

I think it's been very one-sided for the models, not to say they don't need protection. I'm saying you haven't done a phenomenal job, but I think it's misdirected at those agencies that are not really agencies.

[08:55:10]PAUL: OK. But let me ask you a question, because, you know, a lot of people say, look, in any industry, modelling or anything else, you have to pay your dues.

Are some of these smaller agencies that may be part of these lawsuits even though now that it says some of these lawsuits are coming to some of the bigger agencies, but isn't that seen as paying your dues?

You start with an agency who might be smaller, more of a boutique agency in order to make it to the bigger, maybe bigger and better I should say agencies that have been around longer?

HANTMAN: Listen, nobody can argue with that logic. Everybody has a dream. Everybody should have an opportunity. So the answer is, whomever you're working with should treat you with respect, dignity, make sure you get paid on time, make sure you have good living conditions if you need a place to stay. That goes without saying.

PAUL: All right. Robert Hantman, I appreciate you taking the time to be with us. Thank you, sir.

HANTMAN: My pleasure. Thank you.

PAUL: And do stay close. We'll be back in just a couple of minutes.

From scams that prey on desperate young men and women, the labor practices, at least workers deeply in debt, CNN Money investigation from Blake Ellis and Melanie Hicken exposed a dark side of the modelling industry through the eyes of the models themselves.

You can check out the full series, "Runway Injustice." It's a CNN Money special investigation series and it is on our Web site at

BLACKWELL: Big congratulations this morning to all of the college graduates this weekend. High school graduates, too. But special shout out to one at the University of Southern California. His name is Alfonso Gonzales. College grad at 96 years old.

Started his degree in zoology in 1947. And then after fighting World War II, he became a successful business owner but never ended up finishing his degree until now. 65 years later when he finally got his diploma on Friday.


PAUL: Yes.

BLACKWELL: Americans who are part of the never Trump, the anti-Trump movement, group, if you're looking for love, maybe you'll find it.

That was my looking for love look. If you're looking for love.

Maybe you'll find it in Canada. Jeanne Moos has this one for us.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): You may not think of Donald Trump as a matchmaker, but he could inspire cross border romance between Americans and Canadians if Maple Match ever gets off the ground with its catchy slogan.

JOE GOLDMAN, "MAPLE MATCH" CREATOR: Make dating great again.

MOOS: The Web site's mission, "Maple Match makes it easy for Americans to find the ideal Canadian partner to save them from the unfathomable horror of a Trump presidency."

Austin, Texas, resident and Hillary supporter Joe Goldman dreamed up Maple Match.

GOLDMAN: I've always liked maple syrup. I have about 12 liters of maple syrup at home. I'm a real fan of the flavor.

MOOS: Joe says Maple Match started as a fun experiment, but within days 20,000 Americans had signed the wait list and 5,000 Canadians. Every day the number grows. Sure, people have been joking about moving.

JIMMY KIMMEL, LATE NIGHT TALK SHOW HOST: Will Donald Trump be our next president?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If that mother (EXPLETIVE DELETED) becomes president, I'm moving my black (EXPLETIVE DELETED) to South Africa.

MOOS: Miley Cyrus Instagramed, "gonna vom," as in vomit, "move out da country, #aintapartyindausaanymo."

Cher tweeted, "If Trump were to be elected, I'm moving to Jupiter."

But some, like Lena Dunham, sounds serious.

LENA DUNHAM: That I'm 100 percent moving to Canada. I love Canada.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (voice-over): Well, she has a "b" actor and has no, you know, mojo.

MOOS: Maple Match has mojo in terms of generating interest.

MOOS (on camera): But don't expect immediate results. It looks like Maple Match will be as slow as, well, maple syrup.

MOOS (voice-over): Questions about when the site might work got vague answers.

MOOS (on camera): Joe, I'm sorry, it's like talking to Donald Trump. Is it ever going to be really like a dating site?

GOLDMAN: At this -- at this time I really can't say for sure. We're -- we're really trying our hardest.

MOOS (voice-over): Maple Match is asking who you'd like to shack up with before the shack is built.

Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.


BLACKWELL: So is this a dating site or am I moving in with these people? I feel like we blurred the line. I'm shacking up with folks. I thought we were going to have coffee.

PAUL: See? Making dating great again. It's not as easy as you think.

BLACKWELL: It's tough to do.

All right, that's it for us. We'll see you back here at 10:00 Eastern for an hour of NEWSROOM.

PAUL: Do not go anywhere.