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Ryan & Trump Teams to Meet This Week; Mr. Cuban: I was Recruited to Run Against Trump; Sheryl Sandberg Opens Up on Husband's Death; Sanders & Clinton Campaign in Kentucky Today; Sanders, Clinton Campaign in Kentucky Today; Speculation Swirls Around Clinton V.P. Pick; Polls Show Trump Lagging Among Female Voters. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired May 15, 2016 - 07:00   ET


[07:00:02] VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: And moving on.


BLACKWELL: The show even mentioned more controversial picks for the vice presidency. We'll have more on that in the next hour of NEW DAY.

PAUL: We are so grateful to have you start your morning with us.

BLACKWELL: Next hour starts right now.


REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm encouraged with the beginning of this process. It is no secret that Donald Trump and I have had some disagreements.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We're going to start winning, winning, winning.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was never a boss. He was a leader.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The new Bandidos are not the old Bandidos. We get along with everybody, except one.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was swallowed in the deep fog of grief, what I think of as the void.



PAUL: Oh, I know it's early, but we've been waiting for you. Good morning. I'm Christi Paul.

BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. Good to have you this Sunday.

And this morning, the courtship between Donald Trump and Paul Ryan continues to warm up. But the House speaker, as we know, a lot of people in a new relationship, they just want to take things slow. Take it slow. PAUL: They may be not so good words sometimes in a new relationship.

BLACKWELL: Yes, if you are the other side of it, yes.

PAUL: But Paul Ryan yesterday, still not offering his endorsement to the presumptive Republican nominee. But the divide between the two, does appear to be closing just a bit. Ryan says his and Trump's teams will meet this week to dig deeper on policy. There is no word yet as to whether Trump or Ryan will be there in person themselves, but while policy may be on the table, Paul Ryan says bringing the Republican Party together for the general election is still issue number one for them.


RYAN: It is no secret that Donald Trump and I have had some disagreements. It is no secret that we from time to time clash on an issue or two. That happens with people. That happens with Republicans. The question is, can we put together a process that really actually helps get our party unified so that we are at full strength in the fall and based upon the meetings that we had on Thursday, I'm encouraged with the beginning of this process.


PAUL: So for one group of top Republicans, there is still blood in the water after Trump chewed through the primary. Their solution is to throw a third party candidate into the shark tank so to speak. One potential prospect is billionaire Mark Cuban, we hear. He tells CNN he was recently recruited to run against Donald Trump.

CNN senior media correspondent Brian Stelter has been looking into this. He's joining us via phone.

Brian, good morning to you. What did Cuban, what did he say about this?

BRIAN STELTER, CNN SENIOR MEDIA CORRESPONDENT (via telephone): Good morning. I know this sounds kind of hard to believe, but, yes, the never Trump movement trying to find a possible third party candidate. Mark Cuban tells me, "Thanks but no thanks". He spoke to "The Washington Post" about this, and then I followed up with him last night.

He said as a third party candidate, it is too late. He thinks it would have been fun to run against Donald Trump.

You know, think about it, Mark Cuban and Donald Trump, they're similar in some ways. Both are brash billionaires, both are reality TV stars, both are expert at social media and neither have elected office experience.

People have talked about Cuban running for president before. There has been buzz in the past. He said he might think about it. You know, he thinks he would crush Trump. But right now, it is not the right time. He says it is too late for a third party candidate. That's what a lot of political experts would say a well. That this

idea of a third person running is fantastical, but it's not realistic. That nobody would have a chance. Remember, Michael Bloomberg talked about earlier this year, and he decided he didn't have a chance. But the idea that they would call someone like Mark Cuban shows how conservative leaders would really, really, really like to find an alternative to Trump.

PAUL: Maybe an early look at him for future contests perhaps.

Brian, thank you so much. We appreciate it.

STELTER: Thanks.

PAUL: Sure.

Be sure to catch Brian on "RELIABLE SOURCES". That is today at 11:00 a.m. Eastern, right here on CNN.

BLACKWELL: So let's expand this conversation. Why Mark Cuban? Another reality show billionaire to run for president?

That's what I talked about earlier with Evan Sigfried, and no fan of Donald Trump, but also with Kelly Riddle, a Donald Trump supporter and "Washington Times" reporter.

Watch this.


EVAN SIGRIED, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Mark Cuban is a colorful character, just like Donald Trump, but doesn't come offs having the judgment and temperament issues that Trump does. And that's scary for many conservative voters.

In an outsider year, Mark Cuban is that. He portrays this, listen, I know how to be successful. After all, I am a billionaire and even run a championship NBA team.

That might be a message that resonates with people who are frustrated with Washington, but more on the conservative side of the spectrum.

KELLY RIDDLE, WASHINGTON TIMES: Mark Cuban told the "Washington Post" this morning in an article that he is not interested in running. This is just all pipe dreams. I -- there is no credible third party that's going to emerge on the ticket.

[07:05:04] BLACKWELL: Let me read for something that Cuban sent out to his followers on his social media platform. This was reported by "The Dallas Morning News" back in August when he sent it. Let's put it up on the screen, guys.

He wrote this, "I would prefer to be a Republican, I want smaller government. I want smarter government, just like most Republicans.

Put aside that I disagree with Republicans on most social issues. The Republicans have a much bigger problem that will crush them in every presidential election until this changes. The Republican Party requires that all presidential candidates conform to consensus. Until things change, I'll sit in the middle and think for myself, unlike the Republicans."

Why would these men, whore trying to put together the third party white knight as Kelly said go after Mark Cuban? Did they do not the research? Have they not looked into his political views?

SIGFRIED: No, I think the research has been done. But I think that Mark Cuban hits on an important point here. Republicans have an electoral math problem, not just in this election cycle, but every election going forward. We are viewed increasingly as a party of the past by millennials, which is the largest generation in the country. And we need them to come and vote for Republican candidates in the future, otherwise, we're going to have to be relying on baby boomers and rural voters who are shrinking group.


BLACKWELL: Cuban is one of several third party prospects being courted by prominent Republicans. This morning, we heard from Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse's office about this report. They declined to comment on the talks, but says Senator Sasse has been clear he does not want to run.

ISIS militants have attacked a gas plant in Baghdad. Now, this is -- look add this. This is a massive explosion seen outside the city that a cloud of fire and smoke there, seven police officers were killed in this attack. Three storage tanks caught fire, you see here. Twenty- four other people were wounded. The attacks started with two suicide bombs, then six militants tried to storm the plant and they were stopped by security forces.

PAUL: And take a look at this massive fire. What you're looking at here is what broke out in a crowded neighborhood in Sao Paulo, Brazil. This happened about 5:00 local time, and very quickly destroyed several homes in the country's most populous city there. At least one person was injured, but thankfully, no deaths have been reported thus far.

BLACKWELL: Red Hot Chili Peppers front man Anthony Kiedis has been hospitalized. The band had to cancel their concert in Los Angeles last night. There is no word yet now on why he was sent to the hospital, or his condition.

All right. Two days away now from the Democratic primaries in Kentucky and Oregon. Bernie Sanders, favored to win in Kentucky, which would be the first big Southern win. Should Hillary Clinton be concerned about maybe a Sanders resurgence here?

PAUL: And Facebook chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, hasn't spoken publicly about her husband's death until now. What she reveals to new college students -- graduates, I should say.

BLACKWELL: Also, a shoot-out between two rival biker gangs. CNN got exclusive access to the leader of the Bandidos.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This has got nothing do with do-gooders and philanthropists or choir boys. But on the other hand, it's not those great, huge criminal enterprise that everybody thinks.



[07:11:34] PAUL: Well, for months, CNN has be, investigating one of the deadliest shootouts in outlaw biker history. It was a year ago when an all out brawl between two rival biker gangs triggered this chaotic scene you're watching here. The Twin Peaks Restaurant in Waco, Texas.

BLACKWELL: Now, when the bullets finally stop flying, nine men were dead, 177 bikers were then arrested.

Ed Lavandera went to the heart of the biker brawl, getting exclusive interviews with rival gang leaders, all to dive inside this secret and dangerous world of biker gangs.

Ed, good morning to you.


ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Victor and Christi, even the most hardened biker will tell you that what went down in Waco last year is the wildest, most insane chapter in outlaw biker history. We're going to take you inside that Texas shoot-out, bringing you exclusive interviews from bikers that have never talked about what happened that day.

MATTHEW HORACE, FORMER ATF AGENT: These are people that are the worst of the worst, the baddest of the bad. Not every member of the organization is an outlaw, but certainly, there are members of the organizations that commit criminal acts.

LAVANDERA (voice-over): The majority of America' motorcycle clubs preach camaraderie and the love of riding, but in some clubs, there is a more sinister side.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This has got nothing do with do-gooders and philanthropists or choir boys, but on the other hand, it is not those great, huge criminal enterprise that everyone thinks.

LAVANDERA: And Pete James would know, for 16 years, he was president of the notorious Chicago outlaws on the street, he goes by "Big Pete."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Bandidos are one of the largest clubs in the world. They have chapters all over. They are a powerful club. They're one percenters.

LAVANDERA (on camera): One percenters like the Bandidos believe the rules that apply to 99 percent of us don't apply to them.

One percenter biker clubs are considered outlaws. These bikers hardly ever talk, but we've managed to get exclusive access to the two clubs involved in the Waco shootout. The president of the banditos lives in this rural neighborhood north of Houston, behind these trees and iron gate, he is never allowed cameras inside, until now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Come here, you guys. You hungry? Come on.

LAVANDERA: It's interesting to come out here. It is real peaceful and quiet. In a lot of ways, your world is not peaceful and quiet right now.

JEFF PIKE, PRESIDENT OF THE "BANDIDOS": Not right now, it isn't. But it has been for a decade.

LAVANDERA: Jeff Pike has worn the Bandidos vest for 35 years. He has been their national president for the last ten.

PIKE: The new Bandidos are not the old Bandidos. We get along with everybody, except one.

LAVANDERA: That's the one we're here about.

PIKE: Correct.

LAVANDERA: And we'll explore the rivalry between the Bandidos and Cossacks, what led up to Waco, what happened that day and what's going to happen next -- Victor and Christi.


[07:15:02] BLACKWELL: Thank you, Ed. Do not miss "Biker Brawl: Inside the Texas Shootout", Monday night at 9:00 p.m. Eastern and Pacific, only on CNN.

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg speaking publicly for the first time since her husband died tragically a year ago. She is turning her grief and sadness into strength and encouragement for future business leaders.


SHERYL SANDERG, FACEBOOK COO: When life sucks you under, you can kick against the bottom, find the surface and breathe again.



PAUL: In this morning, this powerful, moving speech from Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg to Berkeley graduates.

BLACKWELL: Sandberg's husband, Dave Goldberg, died suddenly last May, while they were on vacation in Mexico. She spoke for the first time about her husband's death, her grief, and resilience. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SANDBERG: One year and 13 days ago, I lost my husband, Dave. His death was sudden and unexpected. We were in Mexico, celebrating a friend's 50th birthday party. I took a nap, he went to work out.

What followed was the unthinkable. I walked into a gym to find him lying on the floor. I flew home to tell my children that their father was gone. I watched his casket being lowered into the ground.

For many months afterwards and at many times since, I was swallowed in the deep fog of grief, what I think of as the void, an emptiness that fills your heart and lungs, constricts your ability to think or even to breathe.

[07:20:14] Dave's death changed me in very profound ways. I learned about the depths of sadness and the brutality of loss, but I also learned that when life sucks you under, you can kick against the bottom, find the surface, and breathe again.


I learned that in the face of the void, or in the face of any challenge, you can choose joy and meaning.



BLACKWELL: Search crews will be back out on the Gulf of Mexico today.

PAUL: Yes, they're resuming the search for a woman who fell off a Carnival cruise ship. She fell off the tenth floor at 2:00 in the morning. This happened on Friday. Crews are searching a 3,000 square mile area. It's 200 miles off the coast of Galveston.

Two vehicles catch fire near Disney's Animal Kingdom in Orlando. Look at this. This was after an SUV crashed into a bus. Eleven people are recovering in the hospital, including a child. Eight other people involved in the crash were not injured.

And a massive explosion seen just outside Baghdad. Look at these pictures. This was ISIS militants attack a gas plant there.

[07:25:03] seven police officers were killed. And three storage tanks caught fire. Twenty-four other people were wounded.$, this attack started with suicide bombs, and they tried to storm the plant. They were stopped by security forces.

BLACKWELL: New this morning, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders campaigning in Kentucky today, ahead of Tuesday's Democratic primary. Sanders still says he is planning to stay in the race until the end, but will he able to win the nomination?

CNN's chief national correspondent, John King, has details for us this morning. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Fresh off his win in West Virginia -- a big win it was over Hillary Clinton -- look at this Bernie Sanders winning every county. The Vermont senator now saying he thinks it's possible, possible, he could catch Hillary Clinton in the pledged delegates by the end of the Democratic nomination contest. Is it possible? It's possible, but it's a steep hill.

Look at the math right now. Look at Hillary Clinton's lead. Let's bring it out and show you the tale of the tape, if you will, in the Democratic so far.

Here pledged delegate lead is still 294. Even with that big win in West Virginia, Senator Sanders only had a net gain of seven delegates. She's won 26 contests. Senator Sanders has won 20. Yes, she has won two of the last three, but she has a healthy lead in the contest, and there are now just 11 remaining. Eight states plus Puerto Rico, District of Columbia.

Can Sanders catch up? It's mathematically possible. You wouldn't get very good odds in Vegas, though, because of this. He needs to win 67 percent of the remaining pledged delegates to catch Secretary Clinton -- 67 percent, just to catch her. He would beat her by one if he won 67 percent of the remaining delegates.

Now, is that possible? Sure, he won the state of Idaho, for example, with 78 percent. Remember, the Democratic rules are proportional. If you get 78 percent, you're getting about 78 percent of the delegates. He won the state of Washington with more than 70 percent.

So, sanders can say there are two examples of me beating her by that big margin. But realistically, West Virginia, he had 51 percent of the vote. When he won a week previous to that in Indiana, 52 percent of the vote. When he won in Michigan, he was below 50 percent. When he won in Wisconsin, 56 percent.

So, convincing wins, good wins, but not the 67 percent he needs to make it happen. So, can he do it? Is it mathematically possible? Yes. Based on everything we've seen in the contests so far, is it likely? Absolutely not.

And plus, we should remember, Hillary Clinton also has a wildcard. She has right now more than 500 appointed Democrats, super delegates elected Democrats, they get votes at the convention. They have pledged their support to her, 516 to Clinton, to only 41 for Senator Sanders.

Now, if Sanders can win out, run the board in the remaining 11 contests, would they panic and switch their votes, yes, of course they would. That's called politics. But that means Sanders would have to win all of the 11 left or win 9 of 11, 8 of 11. What Secretary Clinton is counting on is to split them. Senator Sanders get some, she get some, and if she keeps - if that happens, she keeps the support, the super delegates would be enough to push her over the victory line. So, can Sanders do it? Yes. Would you get good odds in Vegas that he

will? Absolutely not.


PAUL: Let's bring in Nomiki Konst, Democratic strategist and a Bernie Sanders supporters, and Suzan Johnson Cook, former U.S. ambassador and Hillary Clinton supporter.

Ladies, thank you for being here.



PAUL: Good morning to you. Thank you.

I want to play some sound that we can listen to together here from Bernie Sanders at a rally yesterday.


SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Nobody would have believed that we would receive well over 9 million votes at this point in the campaign.


And very few people would have believed that this coming Tuesday, we're going to win a great victory right here in Kentucky.


PAUL: It is a very close race in Kentucky, no doubt about it. He is expected to win it.

If he continues to win, especially that one, that first big southern state, Ambassador Cook, what does that mean? Has he taken the Clinton campaign by surprise?

COOK: Well, what it means is -- I'll use his words -- nobody would believe that America still does not have a female president. We're supposed to be the most progressive place on earth and we still don't have a female.

I mean, it is a contest. That's what political debate, political contest is. He's her opponent. But she is still a formidable, strong candidate.

And I just think America needs to wake up, because the rest of the world is laughing at us because we are not a female president and then what's going on in the presidential election is just disgraceful.

PAUL: The numbers we heard there, Nomiki, it's possible, it's not probable. How much is the Sanders campaign possibly betting on trying to win over some of the 516 super delegates to make this happen for them?

[07:30:05] KONST: Well, I sure hope they're betting a lot on it. Because you know, if it really was going to come down to superdelegates, well, we should just call this race back in August of 2015, when Hillary Clinton stacked up over 450 endorsements from super delegates, who are really unbound until the convention floor based on DNC rules.

Now, as John King said earlier, most of the super delegates are elected officials and quite a few of them have decided to endorse Hillary Clinton despite overwhelming numbers in their districts where their districts have turned out in favor of Bernie Sanders.

So if we can flip those and we go into the convention which based on the mathematical probability right now looks likely, you know, both candidates have to reach 2,383 pledged delegates, not including superdelegates, before the convention.

And, you know, we've talked about this before. The momentum is on the side of Bernie Sanders right now. He has won 19 of the last 25 states. He's 54 percent of pledged delegates since Super Tuesday. There's a 10 percent difference between the two right now.

You know, this is a real race. It is the second Democratic primary in history since we've been doing this. Now, what this highlights to the American people and to the world is that our Democratic process on the primary side is flawed. It shouldn't come down to superdelegates equaling 10,000 votes. We have "one person, one vote" in his country, and that's what it should be.

PAUL: But when we look ahead to California, because that is going to be the big ticket item here. There are 475 delegates in California up for stake. Hillary Clinton wins that, Ambassador Cook, it's over.

COOK: It's definitely over.

PAUL: Is that what she's focusing on now? Is it California?

COOK: Yes, very much so. California is focusing on her. I mean, this is not just the first time she's going there. I mean, people have been raising money and going there for the last two years.

So, I think California is a win. It is a shoo-in. We're going to see her as the nominee on the Democratic floor and we should support her. You know, I've had a record with her.

I've seen her since she was first lady in the White House. She has a track star. She was a superstar as a secretary of state for the United States of America. People will come to their senses --


PAUL: But did you really expect, a contest that would be this close, as close as it is far down the line?

COOK: Well, you know, when you run a race, you don't expect anything. You have no expectations other than you'll win at the end of the day. So, if it was not a strong opponent, it wouldn't be a good race.

So, for the first time, we have a really strong Democratic opponent. So, it doesn't matter. But at the end, the expectation is that we will win. And she is in it to win it.

I am a female candidate. I understand, you know, at some point, they want to squash the candidates. Trump says she is playing the woman's card. Well, she is a woman. She's a strong woman, and she's a strong candidate and I believe she'll be the nominee.

PAUL: But she is having a problem, she is having problem with millennial women and getting them on board with her.

KONST: Including myself.

PAUL: And when you look at California, Nomiki, what is Bernie Sanders going to do in California? That is where it's all going to come down to on June 7th at this point.

KONST: Right, well, so the reality is that we don't have winner take all states a we all know, right? So, California has 475 pledged delegates. Even if it is a tie or very close, neither candidate will get to that magical number.

And so right now, in one of the latest polls, think it was FOX News, said they're in a statistical tie California. That momentum is going to continue to grow.

This is all by design. You know, in the early '80s, we changed the rules, the establishment changed the rules, the Democratic Party, to favor the establishment or conservative candidates for the general elections in the '80s, when it was a more conservative country. And that's why California, a much more progressive state, is stacked at the end. The numbers favor Bernie Sanders going into California. But to push back on your point about being a woman --


PAUL: I don't know that they stake against him, but they're pretty close.

KONST: They're very close, correct. But, you know, to go back to another point about being a woman, as a millennial woman, I think what's really important here is that women in particular look at records. It is not just about having a strong female president which we all want and overdue. It is being have a strong female president that has the right judgment, because it is going to set the tone, set the reputation for other women to run for office.

And right now, I think what millennial women are seeing is that the '90s era policies and Hillary Clinton's track record at the State Department are not in -- they're not parallel to the Democratic Party of today. It is a pro-trade, pro-corporatism, pro-interventionalist agenda that is not who we are as a Democratic Party.

PAUL: Ambassador Cook, what do you say to that? COOK: As a non-millennial woman, I think we do look at the record

totally. And so, I think it's coming to the table. I know millennial women who have been working for Hillary for a long time. So you're one that may not be on her side, but that's one. I think at the end of the day, we look at the entire record in terms of what that person can bring to the table.

When we're looking at a presidential candidate, we want to make sure they can run America, but they're worldwide and deal with foreign policy as well.

KONST: Right. So, what's her track record on foreign policy?


[07:35:04] COOK: What has Bernie done?

PAUL: I'm getting wrapped and we'll just have to re-visit this again sometime soon. You may help to do that.

Nomiki Konst, Ambassador Suzan Johnson Cook, we appreciate both of you. Thank you.

KONST: Have good one.

COOK: Thank you for having us.

PAUL: Sure.

COOK: Hillary.

PAUL: CNN, by the way -- getting the last voice in there, isn't she? CNN will have coverage of the Kentucky and Oregon primaries all day on Tuesday. So, do be with us then.

All right. Let's talk about Ted Cruz. He's warning the GOP about challenging days ahead, his words there, as he makes his first major speech since dropping out of the race. What does he mean by that statement?


PAUL: So, Ted Cruz snapping Donald Trump it seemed to many in his first major speech after a failed bid for the presidency, refusing to even mention the likely GOP nominee by name or offer an endorsement. Take a listen.


SEN. TED CRUZ (R), TEXAS: I don't know what the future will hold. We may face some challenging days ahead. We may face growing challenges going ahead. But I am convinced that movement, the men and women gathered here, will be the remnant, be will the core of pulling this country back from the abyss.

(END VIDEO CLIP) PAUL: Cruz did take a veiled swipe, saying Republicans should be suspicious of conservatives who talk about big government.


CRUZ: You want to know how to tell if someone is a conservative, you can listen very, very carefully. If they stand in front of you and say this is what government is going to do for you, they ain't a conservative.

[07:40:02] If they instead talk about this is how we're going to keep government out of your way so that you can achieve the American dream, that means they're a conservative.


BLACKWELL: Well, what you did not hear was Ted Cruz endorse Donald Trump, and he is not the only person who has held back. House Speaker Paul Ryan also said that he is yet to get to the point where he's behind 100 percent the presumptive nominee.

Here to discuss, host of CNN "STATE OF THE UNION", Jake Tapper.

Jake, good morning to you.


BLACKWELL: So, this week, the talking points on Capitol Hill were disseminated, talk of progress. There were a lot of smiling pictures tweeted out after Donald Trump was in Washington.

But how long does the divide going on? Do they eventually coalesce behind Donald Trump, or does this fracture continue up to November?

TAPPER: I think largely the Republican leadership in Washington will coalesce around Donald Trump, and that includes Speaker Ryan. I do think that there is a recognition that Donald Trump is the nominee, and he is the one that the Republican voters have chosen, and there is a need for people to coalesce around him.

But I do think there are three groups. I think people who are uniting around Donald Trump, even though he wasn't their first choice, such as Mitch McConnell, majority leader. I think there are those who will never quite get there enthusiastically, and those will likely include Senator Ted Cruz and Senator Marco Rubio. Others in the Senate who are running for reelection from states that are either blue or purple, like Kelly Ayotte from New Hampshire. Those individuals I think will likely take the course of "I support the Republican nominee," but they will never full-throatedly endorse Donald Trump.

Then there is this third group we've covered, which is the individuals who are never Trump, and they include Senator Ben Sasse from Nebraska, as well as many Republican pundits, including Bill Kristol and S.E. Cupp and others, who I think ultimately will never rally around Donald Trump and will ultimately vote third party in the fall.

BLACKWELL: And they're reportedly still looking for the third party candidate.

Let's talk about what's coming up this morning. You've got live with you, Trump's convention manager, Paul Manafort, as well as a rumored V.P. pick for Trump.

TAPPER: No, rumor V.P. pick for Hillary Clinton, Sherrod Brown.

BLACKWELL: Hillary Clinton, my apologies, sorry.

TAPPER: Sherrod Brown, the Democratic senator from Ohio, very progressive, and there is a lot of speculation not only because he comes from such a pivotal battleground state Ohio, but also, because he represents the really -- the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, it might be a good way for her -- for Hillary Clinton to shore up her support among Sanders supporter.

But also, Paul Manafort, the convention manager, Donald Trump's top aide, and I really want to ask him about that meeting that Trump had with Paul Ryan, speaker of the House, on Thursday. Ryan's people are out there saying that the meeting couldn't have gone better. Trump provided every reassurance that they wanted to hear about how he was going to comport himself going forward as a candidate.

As you know, Speaker Ryan has had trouble about some of the things Trump has had to say, specifically as it relates to Muslims, as it relates to Latinos and women. But they say they got all the assurances they needed.

Donald Trump is in today's "New York Times" talking to Maureen Dowd, saying the exact opposite. Basically all Ryan did was talk about what an amazing candidate Trump was, and there was no talk of him changing his behavior. He has to be me, he has to be himself.

So, we'll find out what actually happened at that meeting, or we'll try to anyway. And then, of course, lots of questions about when he's going to release his tax returns and much more.

BLACKWELL: All right. Looking forward to it. I'm sure Sherrod Brown is surprised to be on Donald Trump's short list.


TAPPER: That would be quite a ticket. That would be quite a ticket.

BLACKWELL: All right. Jake Tapper, thanks so much.

TAPPER: Thanks, Victor.

BLACKWELL: All right. Don't miss "STATE OF THE UNION WITH JAKE TAPPER" coming up at 9:00 Eastern, right here on CNN.

PAUL: Well, President Obama enlisting some superstar power in the fight against drug abuse. The president teamed up with rapper Macklemore yesterday in his weekly White House address. The duo tackling one of the issues that is plaguing the country, opioid addiction. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MACKLEMORE, RAPPER: Hey, everybody. I'm here with President Obama, because I take this personally. I abuse prescription drugs and I battled addiction. If I didn't get the help that I needed when I needed it, I definitely would not be here today. I want to help others facing the same challenges that I did.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Now, drug overdoses now take more lives every year than traffic accidents. Deaths from opioid overdoses have tripled since 2000. A lot of time, they're from legal drugs prescribed by a doctor. So, addiction doesn't always start in some dark alley. It often starts in a medicine cabinet.


PAUL: The pair sent the message the same day the president called on Congress to pass the $1.1 billion in new funding in his budget to offer treatment to people addicted to opioids.

[07:45:09] BLACKWELL: Donald Trump begets enthusiastic cheers at his rallies, but his ratings from women in the latest polls are not as enthusiastic. With the majority of women seeing him unfavorably, he is trying to turn it around. And in the eyes of some women, Donald Trump has been anything but friendly. One of his former executives talks exclusively with CNN.



FORMER TRUMP EXECUTIVE: He was never a boss.

WHITFIELD: How would you --

FORMER TRUMP EXECUTIVE: He was never a boss. He was a leader.



PAUL: A former Donald Trump executive says he was more than a boss to her. He was a leader. She means that in a very positive way.

BLACKWELL: Yes. Her name is Louise Sunshine. She worked for Trump for more than a decade and sat down with Fredricka Whitfield for an exclusive interview to talk about working in Trump's real life boardroom.


LOUIS SUNSHINE, FORMER TRUMP EXECUTIVE: There was no boardroom. That's number one. The boardroom was in Donald's head. The boardroom was all of these ideas he had, the vision he had.

And if you could buy into his vision and you were trustworthy, and you were intelligent, and you were proactive -- proactive was the key -- and you were proactive, and you were dynamic and you could hold your own, you were in it, the glass ceiling was about.

[07:50:14] If the ceiling today is my ceiling is, my 22 feet high in my home and the ceiling then could have been maybe two feet high, maybe one foot.

Every once in a while in your lifetime, there comes a person or an opportunity or a person with an opportunity, you know, and I'm a woman -- I mean, and women don't have these opportunities very often.

WHITFIELD (voice-over): Before the hit TV show "Apprentice". Sunshine played a role in the real life version.

(on camera): How is he as a boss?

SUNSHINE: He was never a boss.

WHITFIELD: How would you --

SUNSHINE: He was never a boss. He was a leader. It's a lot different to have a boss than a leader.

He was a leader. He taught me. He mentored me. He showed me the way. I absorbed from Donald. I considered it --

WHITFIELD: You were impressed?

SUNSHINE: -- the greatest opportunity probably that I would ever have in my lifetime. That's it. I was like smitten.


PAUL: So, despite her praise with Trump, a new poll shows nearly three quarters of all female voters view Trump unfavorably. That's along with 40 percent of female Republican voters.

CNN politics reporter Eric Bradner with us now.

Is there a chance, Eric -- is there a sense that these numbers are insurmountable at all?

ERIC BRADNER, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Well, they're historically high for a presidential nominee. They're they difficult to overcome. Trump has advantages among white male voters, but these advantages are being totally eroded by his problems with women.

And it's going to be tough to overcome them, because there's so much evidence of Trump attacking women on video throughout the years, in radio interviews with Howard Stern n comments that were printed. He's even this morning attacking the Clintons, attacking Hillary Clinton again on Twitter over her husband's marital infidelity.

So, it's not just that he has these really historically high unfavorable ratings. It's that there's a lot of ammo, that Democrats and his opponents can use against him to keep him from sort of improving these numbers. So, yes, if he can't do that, there's no way he could win.

PAUL: Just this morning, too, attacking a "New York Times" article detailing unnerving encounters with women.

But considering a lot of people have been calling him the Teflon candidate, how effective would that article be in trying to hurt him, if that is the point?

BRADNER: Right. So, "The New York Times" is obviously not popular among conservative voters. I think what people have to keep in mind is the Republican primary electorate and the general electric electorate are two entirely different things.

Yes Donald Trump has been able to sort of have everything bounce off him without any effect in the primary contest, but that's not the general election. It's going to be a totally different electorate, a group of voters who have not been voting in Republican contests but have been paying attention to Trump's comments this entire time and he hasn't had to face those voters. The poll numbers we're seeing so far suggest he is in deep trouble with women.

PAUL: All right. Eric Bradner, we appreciate it, thank you so much.

BRADNER: Thank you.

PAUL: And, by the way, you can catch more of Ms. Sunshine's interview with "NEWSROOM" with Fredricka Whitfield. That is this afternoon at 2:00 p.m.

BLACKWELL: Up next, the best of "Saturday Night Live," the sketches that skewered Donald Trump over potential V.P. picks.


[07:57:29] PAUL: Well, legendary anchor Tom Brokaw, he has a way with words, of course, and did not mince them while giving the commencement address at University of Mississippi.

BLACKWELL: While giving that speech at ole miss he took a shot at the school's rival, the University of Alabama. Watch this.


TOM BROKAW, FORMER NBC ANCHOR: If I were speaking at Alabama, I would have to use smaller words and shorter sentences.


PAUL: This is that time of year, everybody's giving a speech and --

BLACKWELL: Little rivalry is OK.

PAUL: Yes, it is.

BLACKWELL: All right. Donald Trump I don't know if he agrees a little rivalry is OK, but once again he's getting the "SNL" treatment. The cast at "Saturday Night Live" spoofing the Republican nominee's options for running mates.

PAUL: The biggest punches went to his former rivals though, the cast mocks Chris Christie's alliance with Trump and even they pick out a couple more controversial possibilities. Take a look.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How about a guy from a swing state, Florida, he's half Hispanic with a proven track record of standing up for him?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: George Zimmerman.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. No, no, no, no, Marco Rubio.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, Little Marco. I can't ask him to be V.P. until his parents sign the release form. I need someone who can lead. Where do I find that?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Beats me. Oh my -- how did this get in here? Now that is crazy. That, maybe, yes? Maybe no? OK, all right.

Now this next one it's a little outside the box but I feel very strongly about it, hear me out, Bruce Springsteen. I mean, come on, he's the boss, you're the boss. He was born to run.



I'm sorry. Do you have any idea, sir?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What about John Kasich, he's smart, experienced, he could help us in Ohio?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said he's not interested.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's a loser. Big, fat loser.

What about Nikki Haley?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Also not interested.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said not right now but he will see you in hell.

You are such a special candidate. Maybe, just maybe the person you've been looking for this whole time is standing in this room right now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're so right.

Ben Carson, you want to be vice president? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, that would be hella exciting!


PAUL: I think about how much they prep to get the cadence and everything just right.

BLACKWELL: But I don't know if Ben Carson has ever said hella exciting.

PAUL: No, that's true.

We're so grateful that you spent your morning with us. Thanks for being here.