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EgyptAir Investigation; Trump in California; Time Running Out to Find Plane's Black Boxes; Doctors: Postpone Or Move Olympics Because of Zika Virus; Obama Makes Historic Visit to Hiroshima; Trump Encourages Rubio to Run for Reelection; Sanders: Clinton Showing 'Arrogance'. Aired 6-7p ET
Aired May 27, 2016 - 18:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Happening now, breaking news: California streaming. Large protests, as Donald Trump campaigns across the Golden State, crowds of anti-Trump demonstrators turning out in Fresno San Diego. Police poised nearby amid fears of new violence. Is chaos now a permanent part of the Trump campaign?
States in play. Trump vowing to turn blue states red, predicting he will win California and other Democratic strongholds by focusing in on 15 specific states, instead of the traditional battlegrounds. Can Trump redraw the electoral map?
Time running out? Batteries on the black boxes from EgyptAir Flight 804 poised to die in a matter of weeks. Location signals from the final voice and cockpit data recorders will go silent, dashing hopes of solving the mystery of the crash. Can search crews find them in time?
And powerful silence. President Obama makes a historic visit to Hiroshima, laying a wreath to honor the victims, delivering a somber speech, and hugging a survivor of the atomic blast that leveled the city.
What was the message to the world?
We want to welcome our viewers in the United States and around the world. I'm Wolf Blitzer. You're in THE SITUATION ROOM.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.
BLITZER: We're following breaking news, a large protest outside Donald Trump's campaign rally in San Diego. Hundreds of demonstrators denouncing the presumptive Republican presidential nominee who is now predicting he will win the state, traditionally a Democratic stronghold.
There's a large police presence, officers standing by to prevent a repeat of the violence that broke out at other Trump rallies earlier in the week.
We are also following the search for EgyptAir Flight 804 in the Mediterranean. Crews are intensifying efforts to locate the plane's voice and data recorders before the batteries powering their location signals die in a manner of weeks. The so-called black boxes are the best hope investigators have for figuring out why that plane crashed.
We're covering all of that, much more this hour with our guests, including one of Donald Trump's key supporters, Scottie Nell Hughes, and our correspondents and expert analysts, they are also standing by.
First, let's get some more on the protests going on outside.
Paul Vercammen is there for us.
Paul, what are you seeing?
PAUL VERCAMMEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hundreds and hundreds of protesters right around me, Wolf.
If you look just over here, you see can see a Trump pinata, you see can see a sign that says build a wall around Trump, these protesters shoulder to shoulder outside the arena. Tempers flared just a little while ago, and one of the protesters sort of got onto the barrier area where I'm standing.
We will show you the police in force as we come to my right. They're here. These are San Diego police officers. They have their riot helmets on, their visors flipped up and they're completely prepared to go into action should anything happen. And they have warned protesters if they get violent or begin destroying property or there's unlawful assembly, they have vowed that there will be arrests.
As you can see off in the distance, it's a bit away, but there's a lot of barriers here were sealed off. People are now leaving, leaving Donald Trump's speech and they're sealed off from these demonstrators -- those are the Trump supporters -- by these barriers. Hundreds of people out here right now, a spirited rally, at that, Wolf, but so far we haven't seen anything that's extraordinarily violent -- back to you, Wolf.
BLITZER: Peaceful rally. Peaceful protests are fine. Let's hope it stays peaceful. The big crowd outside of protesters, a very big crowd inside that arena as well, a lot of supporters. He has generated a lot of support inside, right, Paul?
VERCAMMEN: Oh, absolutely, and he's generating support outside.
As we showed you off in the distance, all of those people are leaving the arena, and they're all very pro-Trump, not as many of them obviously on the streets, but a huge turnout here in San Diego. And I know that you have been discussing this all show long.
San Diego is a conservative county in some ways, but the people pointing out again and again that this is a cross-border town. There are people who work in Mexico and vice versa and many of them expressing that Trump needs to change his policies, because they say, these demonstrators say that Trump's policies don't fly here. On the flip side, the Trump supporters who were outside here earlier,
all of them saying that they need to recognize we do need a border wall. And there's been a lot of shouting back and forth, Wolf, from those Trump supporters saying a wall has to be built, and these demonstrators say, no, we don't want a wall at all.
BLITZER: Paul Vercammen, we will get back to you. Stand by.
I want to go to CNN's Phil Mattingly right now.
Phil, you're in Fresno, California, where a Trump rally occurred earlier in the day. There was a large number of protesters there as well, right?
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's exactly right, Wolf.
And it is very interesting, the tensions you're seeing right now on the ground in San Diego. There were tensions here in Fresno. There have been tensions at every stop Donald Trump has had in the state of California.
And yet Donald Trump continues to come back to California, a blue Democratic stronghold that Donald Trump thinks he may be able to put in play in November.
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Listen, we're going to win the election. So I want to make a big play for California.
MATTINGLY (voice-over): Today, one day after clinching the Republican nomination, Donald Trump stumping in a decidedly not Republican state, one that has greeted Trump rallies with protests and even violence so far this year.
TRUMP: I love my protesters.
MATTINGLY: Stops in Fresno and San Diego underscoring the Trump's campaign departure from traditional GOP strategy.
TRUMP: We're getting these massive crowds all over the place. I actually think we are going to win California.
MATTINGLY: Trump says he plans to focus on 15 or so states in November, including battlegrounds, such as Ohio and Florida, and Democratic strongholds like California and his home state of New York.
TRUMP: I view it strategically, also, because if we don't win it, they are going to spend one hell a fortune in fighting me off. That, I can tell you.
MATTINGLY: If he's able to reshape the electoral map, Trump could force likely Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton to spend heavily to defend those states and upend the race, Trump advisers say, even as many top GOP officials remain skeptical.
TRUMP: Just met with a lot of the farmers.
MATTINGLY: Trump on Friday meeting privately with farmers before his Fresno stop, looking to bolster his outreach to the agriculture industry, all as he continues to face withering attacks from the Clinton campaign.
HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Based on what we have already heard, Donald Trump is an unqualified loose cannon.
MATTINGLY: Trump firing back at the former secretary of state.
TRUMP: She's not competent. And it's always been this way. She's always skirted on the edge, whether it's Whitewater or it whether all of these things, going into -- how about Benghazi?
MATTINGLY: But reversing course on another former target.
TRUMP: He couldn't get elected dogcatcher in Florida. They hate him in the state of Florida.
MATTINGLY: Florida Senator Marco Rubio joining the growing chorus of GOP leaders, urging his one-time adversary to change his mind and run for reelection, even as Rubio tells CNN's Jake Tapper he won't run against a friend vying for the seat.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: Carlos Lopez-Cantera is a strong candidate. He's in the race. I'm not going to -- I'm not -- I think he's put in time and energy to it and he deserves the chance to see what he can take it.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: If you didn't have a friend running, might you reconsider?
MATTINGLY: Now, Republicans very skeptical of the idea that California is a state that could be in play.
Democrats only laughing about the idea. Barack Obama won this state by more than 20 points in 2008 and 2012, Wolf, and if you look demographically at how this state appears, the profile, very different from the profile of states that Trump believes he can actually win, like Ohio, or Pennsylvania, or Michigan.
Still, Trump making a very interesting point earlier, even as these protests were going on in Fresno and in San Diego now. Just forcing Hillary Clinton to spend money in this state might make his efforts here worthwhile. We will see if he can convince other Republicans that this is a good idea -- Wolf.
BLITZER: Yes. If he manages to do that, she would have to spend less money in other battleground states. That would be the objective. All right, Phil, thanks very much.
Let's get some more now on the Trump campaign. Our political reporter Sara Murray is joining us right now.
Sara, you're also there in California. You're in San Diego at that rally. Is it at all realistic for Donald Trump to believe he could actually win California?
SARA MURRAY, CNN NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Wolf, as Phil just pointed out, Donald Trump keeps coming here again and again, and even though it is this deep blue state.
And Phil gave you a good sense of some of the challenges, but the other side of this is that the Trump campaign is still sort of in disarray when it comes to building out a ground game, even in traditional battleground states, even in places like Ohio, even in places like Florida.
Of course, Donald Trump just fired his political director. As of right now, he doesn't have that, so if you're really serious about putting California in play, these are things you would be seeing. You would seeing much more organization from the campaign, from the RNC.
And so far we just haven't seen that, Wolf.
BLITZER: Donald Trump just issued a statement, Sara, as you know, saying he will not, repeat, not debate Bernie Sanders after all. Tell us about that, tell us about the decision.
MURRAY: Trump sort of putting an end to the intrigue here.
The Sanders campaign put out their own statement, saying two networks were interested in this, they will be willing to donate money to charity. And the Trump campaign slapped it down pretty hard. Donald Trump put out a statement saying: "Now that I am the presumptive nominee Republican nominee, it seems inappropriate that I would debate the second-place finisher. As much as I want to debate Bernie Sanders, and it would be an easy payday, I will wait to replace the first-place finisher in the Democratic Party, probably crooked Hillary Clinton."
So, Wolf, you see there Donald Trump doesn't want to take the risk doing what would essentially be a media stunt and launching this debate with Bernie Sanders. So, I think that's probably the end of that.
BLITZER: I'm sure you're right. All right, thanks very much, Sara Murray, for that report. We will get back to you as well.
I want to get some more on all of this. Joining us now, one of Donald Trump's key supporters, Scottie Nell Hughes.
Scottie, thanks very much for joining us. SCOTTIE NELL HUGHES, DONALD TRUMP SUPPORTER: Good evening.
BLITZER: Let's talk about the protests first.
You have seen these protests now. They seem to be multiplying almost every event he's now going to, whether in New Mexico the other day, California yesterday, California, San Diego today, Fresno earlier in the day. Is this the new normal as far as Trump events are concerned?
HUGHES: Well, it might be, but here's one thing these protesters have to do.
And I will give it to the San Diego crowd. It looks like they have been very peaceful compared to what we have seen this week. What they continue to not tell folks is exactly what they want. They want Mr. Trump to go back on their policies.
And these are people that while they're sitting there, and they're waving the Mexican flag, they're burning paraphernalia that has the American flag on it and has Trump stickers on it, they're sitting there basically this disruption and ignoring American laws, because they don't want to be sent back to a country that they're waving that flag for.
That doesn't make any sense to me and I don't think it makes a lot of sense to a lot of people that are watching these. Now, when you look at what's going on in San Diego right now, that we can understand, peaceful protests where they say we don't like his idea about building a wall, we don't like his idea about sending all illegals back over, making them come through a very big door in that wall.
That, I can respect. And I think they get a lot farther with their message by protests like what we're seeing right now. But what we saw this week, when you're taking down, you're throwing things, you're taking down the equestrian police officers, when you're sitting there, and you're pulling a man out of a wheelchair, when they're sitting there and being very aggressive against those folks who just want to hear their future president possibly, that doesn't really help their Cause, I think.
BLITZER: We're looking at live pictures right now, Scottie, some of the protesters. You see the police. They're standing by as well.
How worried are you, though, that these kinds of protests could turn violent?
HUGHES: Well, the good news is, is the San Diego Police Department is very well aware, they have watched this week. They're obviously prepared.
I think earlier this week the Albuquerque police were a little bit -- they were prepared, but they didn't have -- they had no idea what was going to happen. I think San Diego, if anything does start, I think they will shut it down quickly. And that unfortunately is what it's going to take for these not to escalate at future Trump events. What do they want, Mr. Trump not to give any more rallies? Well, I
hate to tell them, but there are thousands, there are tens upon thousands more inside who appreciate Mr. Trump's proposals, who appreciate what he's saying, compared to the hundreds, possibly a thousand or two that are outside protesting.
BLITZER: Trump sounded today clearly that he's going to try to make a play for California in the general election. Honestly, Scottie, do you think that's a real possibility?
HUGHES: Well, as your reporters point out, if anything, it is a win- win situation.
They make Hillary Clinton and the Democrats spend their dollars no matter what. The last time that a Republican won California was in 1988, and things have changed. But nothing about this campaign season yet been orthodox.
So, if anybody could be able to pull out a win in California, it is Mr. Trump. And so he is going to try. But like I said, either way, it is going to be a winning strategy for him, because those large amount of dollars that Hillary Clinton has been allowed to fund-raise and she's been allowed to accumulate will definitely be spent within the media markets of California, much rather than there than necessarily the rest of the country.
BLITZER: Places like Ohio or Florida, for that matter.
BLITZER: All right, Scottie, stand by for a moment.
We have more. We are watching these protests outside the arena there. You can see the police, you can see the protesters, large numbers, hundreds of protesters there. You see a pinata of Donald Trump as well.
We will take a quick break, much more right after this.
BLITZER: All right, the breaking news this hour, the protests outside Donald Trump's campaign rally in San Diego, hundreds of people marching near the convention center, some carrying Mexican flags.
You're seeing these live pictures coming in, police on the outskirts of that arena. Inside, Donald Trump has a huge crowd of supporters there as well.
Right now, we're back with one of Donald Trump's key supporters, Scottie Nell Hughes.
Scottie, Mitt Romney, the Republican presidential nominee four years ago, gave an interview that was published today in "The Wall Street Journal" about why he has been so outspoken against Donald Trump. And he said -- among other things, he said this. Let me quote him.
"I wanted my grandkids to see that I simply couldn't ignore what Mr. Trump was saying and doing which revealed a character and temperament unfit for the leader of the free world."
He then said he couldn't vote for Trump or Hillary Clinton, but added, "Hopefully, I will find a name I can support. If not, I will write in a name."
What's your reaction to those strong words from the Republican nominee of only four years ago?
HUGHES: Well, as we say here in the South, bless his dear heart, because while I can sit there and I can say, you know what, that was a very good grandpa view to say that for your grandchildren, you should have said your piece and then sat down and be quiet, especially after Mr. Trump continued to win and he continued to -- and now as he is our nominee and will be confirmed at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.
All he is doing right now is trying to keep his name in the light. And, unfortunately, what little respect that I think conservatives and Republicans might have for him continues to dwindle with publicity stunts like this meant to just help the other side, not necessarily the Republican Party.
BLITZER: Trump criticized Romney once again in a speech today in California, once again calling him a choker because he lost the election.
He also criticized yesterday, as you know, the New Mexico governor, Susana Martinez, multiple times, in fact, this week because she didn't come to his event in Albuquerque, hasn't endorsed him.
I guess the question is, does he need to grow a bit of a tougher skin?
HUGHES: Well, I think he was sitting there.
He is rightfully so, I think, for criticizing the governor of New Mexico. We can sit there. We talk about what he actually said, but when you look at what she has accomplished in her state since she was elected in 2010, it has been horrendous.
In 2015, it was the number one state reliant on the federal government, mainly because of the large amount of food stamps and the welfare program that exists there.
All this was, all she was doing, the main reason why she didn't come to the event, and why she publicly made comments that were meant to hurt Mr. Trump, was to pander to the 48 percent or 49 percent of Hispanics that now live within her state, as well as to keep herself in good sitting with former governors, presidents of the governors council like Mitt Romney and possibly even Haley Barbour. This was nothing about what was good for our party and keeping Hillary
Clinton out of the White House, which should be the goal of every Republican right now, as instructed by Chairman Reince Priebus in the last couple of e-mails he has sent out to the party.
BLITZER: But, Scottie, she's not only the chair of the Republican Governors Association, she's the governor of New Mexico, she's a woman, she's a Latina.
Don't you think that Donald Trump needs to bring her in, instead of going after her because she so far hasn't endorsed him?
HUGHES: Well, I think it's not -- he hasn't gone after her just because she didn't endorse him.
I think it's been her public disapproval of her. It is one thing to say, hey, just let's pick up the phone here and let's air our grievances in private, before we sit here. That's one good thing that the Democrats do. They very rarely sit there and do these public PDA kind of attention-getting factors, like I have seen Susana Martinez do over the last few weeks.
We get it, you don't like Mr. Trump. But for the good of the party, will you please at least air it to his campaign and privately air it to him? Have the conversation in private, work out your differences, sort of like what Paul Ryan, I will give him credit, is doing right now with Mr. Trump, work out your grievances in private. Don't do it based on a press release or when there's cameras involved, because all that does is bring embarrassment to the Republican Party and hurts our chances in the fall.
BLITZER: Scottie Nell Hughes, thanks very much for joining us.
HUGHES: Thank you.
BLITZER: Just ahead, can crews find the black boxes from the EgyptAir jet before their batteries die? We're getting new details of the race against time.
Plus, more than 100 health official now calling for Olympic Games in Rio to be postponed or moved because of the Zika virus. Could the Games spark a health disaster?
BLITZER: We are following breaking news right now.
You can see these live pictures, a large protest outside of Donald Trump's campaign rally in San Diego. You see the police lined up. A large police presence is on hand, as hundreds of demonstrators loudly denounce the Republican presumptive nominee. That's what going on outside.
Inside, thousands of Donald Trump supporters are cheering his words. Let's dig deeper right now with our CNN political reporter Manu Raju.
"The Washington Post" assistant editor David Swerdlick, our senior political analyst and senior editor for "The Atlantic," Ron Brownstein, and our chief political correspondent, Dana Bash.
Guys, thanks very much for coming in.
David, these protests seem to be going on and on and on, a lot of people think it is just going to be part of the framework, if you will, going forward.
DAVID SWERDLICK, "THE WASHINGTON POST": Yes.
And at least today's protests don't seem to have erupted the way that the Albuquerque did this week. I frankly think, look, the protesters should realize two things. One is that, at this point, this us vs. them confrontation with Trump actually helps Trump. So, obviously, they have the free speech right to go out and protest at his events, but I'm not sure why they think it's hurting him.
It helps Trump seem relevant and kinetic in this race. The second thing is that the violence just is -- it's unacceptable if you believe in the process.
BLITZER: You live in Los Angeles.
RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes.
BLITZER: You know California politics. When Donald Trump says -- and he just said it today -- he thinks he can carry, he can win California in a general election, is he realistic? Is he dreaming? Is that possible?
BROWNSTEIN: There's a line in a very old Steely Dan song. California tumbles into the sea.
Literally, that's what it would take, because you would need the coast of California and everybody who lives within five miles of the coast to fall into the Pacific, and you would be left with kind of the Central Valley. Maybe then.
Look, California has voted Democratic in the last six presidential elections. President Obama won it by three million votes. It was not a nail-biter. And it's a state that really is -- embodies the modern Democratic coalition. Only about 52 percent of the vote last time was white, over 20 percent Latino, where Donald Trump is struggling.
And, importantly, only about one-quarter of the voters are those blue- collar whites where he has done best with. Mitt Romney won almost 60 percent of them and lost by three million votes. So, if Donald Trump is able to compete in California, if he is even able to make Hillary Clinton spend money there, it is going to be a very different election than it looks like today.
BLITZER: Because it is a big state, as you know, Dana. To start buying ads in California is very expensive. DANA BASH, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Exactly.
BLITZER: And if he can force the Hillary Clinton campaign to spend a lot of money in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco...
BROWNSTEIN: Let's wait and see if that happens.
SWERDLICK: Feels like a bluff.
BASH: Exactly. I was just going to say that, that how many times have we covered Republican presidential campaigns at the beginning of the campaign? Especially, they're just kind of buying time while the Democratic nomination process continues to play out, and they have these grand dreams of going into the bluest of states. We will see if that happens.
BLITZER: Manu, you have been a lot of reporting on Marco Rubio. He says he is not going to run for reelection. But pressure is growing on him, including from Donald Trump, to run.
What are you hearing?
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Indeed.
The pressure is getting intense. The Republican establishment is downright fearful that they're going to lose this seat.
[18:30:06] They think the candidates who are currently running for that seat really are underperforming. They're not raising a lot of money. They have terrible name I.D., and they could lose in a general election.
So you're seeing this pressure campaign really intensify. Yesterday, the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, actually instructed Senate Republicans to lobby Rubio directly and try to convince him to run.
Rubio has been squishy about it. He's saying, "Well, I'm probably not going to really change my mind." He's got a really good friend, Carlos Lopez Cantera, the lieutenant governor of the state. He says that, "Well, he's my friend. He's in the race. I'm not going to get in."
BLITZER: Is there pressure on him to drop out?
RAJU: There is pressure, subtle pressure. And probably behind-the- scenes pressure. And the McConnell super PAC for one said today they would spend a lot of money to help Marco Rubio but they would stay out of the race if Rubio did not get in. So there was that kind of pressure. So it's sending a signal to Lopez Cantera that maybe you have to step aside for Marco Rubio to run.
BLITZER: What are you hearing, Dana?
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I mean, Manu has been leading the way on this reporting, and I'm hearing similar things. I think that the coalition of establishment Republicans trying to get Marco Rubio in is really kind of remarkable. And it is because they are freaking out about losing Florida, very much so, about losing that Senate seat and that that is just one of several that they're worried about holding onto in order to hold onto the broader Senate.
But I think when it comes to Rubio, look, I've heard mixed things. I've heard, on the one hand, that he is ready to go. He's got four young children. He's ready to go make some money in the private sector. He's a young guy. He wants to kind of just kind of reset outside of public service while he figures out what he wants to do. And then I heard today from somebody that he actually changed his mind, and he likes the Senate, and he wants to stay in the Senate. So it's unclear where exactly he's going to be.
RAJU: He has until June 24.
BLITZER: So he's got a month or so, at least four weeks or whatever.
All right, guys, stand by. We're going to continue this. I want to go to the Democratic race right now, the increasingly tight race between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders in California. It holds its primary 11 days from now.
Our senior Washington correspondent, Joe Johns, has the latest. Joe, the battle for California between these two Democrats heating up.
JOE JOHNS, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Wolf, Donald Trump's decision not to debate was a big disappointment for the Bernie Sanders campaign, Sanders himself speaking in Los Angeles tonight, suggesting Trump is afraid of him, accusing Trump of flip-flopping on the issue, and calling for Trump to change his mind again. Sanders has also been turned down for debate with Hillary Clinton.
So tonight, while continuing to attract huge crowds to his rallies, he is looking for other ways to break out of the neck-and-neck race for the California primary.
JOHNS (voice-over): Tonight with Sanders keeping up the primary fight Clinton is appealing to her rival's supporters to unite behind her.
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Whatever differences Senator Sanders and I have or our supporters have, they pale -- they pale in comparison to our differences with Donald Trump and what he represents.
JOHNS: But with the polls in California now neck-and-neck, Clinton's campaign is releasing three new TV ads emphasizing her record.
CLINTON: I'm Hillary Clinton, and I approve this message. JOHNS: Clinton is trying to bring the Democratic primary to a close
so she can focus fully on presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump.
CLINTON: I'm not going to respond to anything he says about me. I could care less what he says about me.
JOHNS: Clinton, though, is not letting up in her criticism of Trump.
CLINTON: What he is saying is dangerous and divisive.
JOHNS: Calling the billionaire unqualified to serve as president.
CLINTON: Based on what we have already heard, Donald Trump is an unqualified loose cannon who cannot get near the most powerful job in the world. It is up to us to say no!
JOHNS: Clinton going on offense even as she plays defense on her e- mails, facing a new round of questions after the release of a State Department inspector general's report, concluding she violated federal rules by improperly using a private e-mail server as secretary of state.
CLINTON (via phone): Well, I thought it was allowed. I knew past secretaries of state used personal e-mail, so yes, I believed it was allowed.
JOHNS: Sanders is taking aim at Clinton not over e-mails but her comments that she's sewn up the Democratic nomination.
CLINTON: I will be the nominee for my party, Chris. That is -- that is already done, in effect. There's no way that I won't be.
JIMMY KIMMEL, HOST, ABC'S "JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE!": Does that make you mad seeing that?
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D-VT), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Just a tinge arrogance there, I think.
JOHNS: During an appearance on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" Thursday night, Sanders also hit Clinton for refusing to debate him ahead of the California primary.
SANDERS: Well, I think it's kind of insulting to the people of the largest state in the United States of America not to come forward and talk about the issues.
JOHNS: Sanders continues to make the case that he would be the best candidate to face Donald Trump in the fall, but if you just look at the delegate math, it's very difficult for Sanders to get to the nomination now. He would need a massive blowout, and that recent poll showed this race very close in California -- Wolf.
[18:35:12] BLITZER: Yes, it did, 11 days away. All right, Joe, thanks very much. Joe Johns reporting. Dana, you heard him say to Jimmy Kimmel, Hillary Clinton was showing, what, a tinge of arrogance, if you will. Are they going to get -- the rhetoric is going to heat up over these next 11 days between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton?
BASH: It's hard to imagine it getting hotter than it has been, especially considering the fact that, for a brief moment, Bernie Sanders suggested, in the way he was talking and also in what his aides were saying, that he was kind of going to dial back the rhetoric when it became clear that, mathematically, he couldn't get the nomination.
But look, he is just guns blazing. I mean, he is determined to make a very strong statement by winning California. And people I talk to in the Clinton campaign aren't so sure that they are going to win. It won't matter probably -- it won't matter mathematically because, even if she does not win, she'll probably get enough delegates...
BROWNSTEIN: Out of New Jersey.
BASH: ... out of New Jersey and even, you know, California all told to go over the top, as we call it, and get the delegates.
BLITZER: The fact there's no debate between Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump, you heard Joe Johns say that's a big disappointment for the Bernie Sanders campaign.
BROWNSTEIN: Yes, that would have been quite -- quite a show. But you know, it never quite made sense in the sense that he is not going to be the nominee.
BLITZER: Both of them talked as if it was going forward.
BROWNSTEIN: I know. Yes, yes. We've heard from Donald Trump particularly, a lot of things that kind of, you know, that float out there and come back.
California is fascinating, right? Because I mean, it fits, basically, the profile of the kind of state that Hillary Clinton is dominating. You look at the 18 largest states that have voted so far. She's won 14 of them, mostly because he hasn't cracked the diversity of the Democratic Party.
But he has basically moved into the state. He's become a one-state candidate. He's essentially written off New Jersey. You have a Latino population that is very young, that gives him some openings there. And then you have independent voters, although there are some obstacles can participate. And all of that produces, I think you're heading toward a pretty close outcome there in the end.
BLITZER: You know, the whole issue of the debate, Joe Manchin, the Democratic senator from West Virginia, he said -- he basically said it was B.S. He actually said the words; he didn't just say it was "B.S." that when Sanders challenging Donald Trump to debate. He said, "Why would you expect Bernie should be considerate or be nice or be working to bring everyone together? He's not a Democrat." RAJU: That's some harsh words. You haven't really heard a lot of
that for much of the year from Senate Democrats who have really given...
BASH: Not publicly.
RAJU: Not publicly, yes. They've given him space, because they don't want to strong-arm him out of the race. But you've seen sort of patience wear thin, particularly after the Nevada aftermath. Folks wanted Bernie Sanders to at least go quietly, at least go diplomatically. We have not seen that yet. And Manchin's comments are indicative of how people feel.
BROWNSTEIN: There's a lot of frustration now, yes.
BLITZER: Yes, Bernie Sanders has always been an independent senator from the state of Vermont, although he caucuses with the Democrats.
You've been watching this very, very closely. For all practical purposes, when Hillary Clinton says she's got it sewn up, is she right?
SWERDLICK: She has it sewn up mathematically, but like Dana said, if you have a situation where Clinton loses California, the momentum of all these states that she has lost in recent weeks is really going to send her into the convention on a very down note, and it's going to make it that much harder for Sanders to be reeled in by folks like...
BLITZER: The way the Democrats proportionately divide delegates, even if she narrowly loses, they're basically going to split those California delegates.
SWERDLICK: Right. But what voters see is Trump sitting there with his nomination wrapped up, and they see Clinton fighting it out.
BROWNSTEIN: Look, I mean, who would have thought we'd be -- we'd be heading into June with as many, if not more questions about Democratic unity at this point as Republican unity? I mean, Republican elites are still enormously divided over Donald Trump. You look at the polls, voters have come together.
Clinton is -- the biggest, I think, red flag for Clinton in all the recent polling is the continuation of the problem she's had with young people through the primaries, and that's where she needs Bernie Sanders' help, President Obama's help. And that may be why she is kind of not going after Sanders as hard as some of these other Republican senators -- Democratic senators.
RAJU: But if Sanders wins California, it's so hard to see him dropping out...
RAJU: ... before July. He's going to want to take it to the convention. Much easier for him to concede with a loss.
BROWNSTEIN: Another month of Democratic frustration as they kind of look at these polls.
BLITZER: We'll see what happens. Well, what about the polls? You think it's realistic that she could lose in California?
BROWNSTEIN: I think it's neck-and-neck. I mean, you kind of think of the independents, the fact that he's basically made it a one-state campaign, and the fact that Latino voters are very young, it may allow him to do better than we've seen in some other states. You add all of that up, and I think he could be competitive, although I'd still give her a slight edge.
BLITZER: I notice that the Clinton campaign already running ads, some significant number of ads in California, which means they're worried.
BASH: Exactly. I don't -- I'm not sure how robust the buy is. But the fact is, as you said, California is a very expensive state. And that they're spending any money on the air in California tells you everything you need to know about how concerned they are.
BLITZER: Do you think this Libertarian, third-party team, two former Republican governors, if -- assuming they get the Libertarian nomination, is going to have an impact and could undermine, let's say, Donald Trump, who's the Republican nominee?
SWERDLICK: Right, Johnson and Weld, two former two-term Republican governors have ticketed up...
BLITZER: From Mexico
SWERDLICK: ... and they're going to Orlando to the Libertarian convention this weekend.
Two things have to happen, Wolf. One is they have to win the nomination this weekend. Second thing, to make an impact, I think they have to get in the debates. And to get in the debates, they have to poll, the Johnson-Weld ticket has to poll at 15 percent. It's not out of the question, because they're polling around 10 percent right now, but you know, will they change Donald Trump strategy of turning swing states? I'm not -- I'm not sure.
RAJU: Will they -- will they have money? That's -- I mean, can they be relevant in actually raising money? It's always been a problem with Libertarians.
BROWNSTEIN: If they become relevant, they might be as much, if not more, of a problem for Hillary Clinton, again, because of this issue with young people, many of whom, I think, are very cool toward Donald Trump but, again, have not warmed up to Hillary Clinton. They have a third choice...
BLITZER: Could be a factor.
BROWNSTEIN: ... that might be -- that might be a problem for her.
BLITZER: We're covering that Libertarian convention this weekend in Orlando. Guys, thanks very much. We're continuing to watch the breaking news. You're looking at live pictures right now. Police and protesters, they are facing each other outside Donald Trump's San Diego rally. We'll continue to monitor that.
Also coming up, the urgent search for the black boxes from EgyptAir Flight 804. They'll go silent in just a few weeks.
Plus, health experts now issuing an urgent warning about the Zika virus. Why some of them want the Summer Olympic games in Brazil postponed or moved. We'll go live to Rio.
[18:46:10] WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: The search for EgyptAir Flight 804 now in its second week and there's a growing sense, a growing sense right now of urgency about finding the plane's black boxes before the batteries that power their location signals dies.
CNN's Brian Todd is working the story for us.
It's only a matter of what, a few weeks, Brian?
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Three weeks to be specific, Wolf. That is all the time the search teams have to find the black boxes which can unlock so many mysteries surrounding this crash. There is sophisticated new equipment being deployed in the search area tonight but a key question tonight is, is it the right equipment?
TODD (voice-over): Tonight, search teams looking for the missing EgyptAir Flight 804 are bracing against elements and battling the clock. Crews face an unforgiving deadline to detect pings from the flight data recorder. The batteries that power them will expire approximately 30 days from the day the plane went missing. And now, there are only about 21 days left.
The underwater search led by the French ship the La Place will soon be under way. The La Place will utilize hydrophones which will listen for the signals from the flight data and cockpit voice recorders. Hydrophones are effective, but can be subject to interference from thermocline, large layers of distinct temperature variances that can block pinger signals.
Deep sea search experts say one piece of equipment is crucial, a towed pinger locator. CNNN got a rare look inside the Maryland facility of Phoenix International where towed pinger locators are made. This device was used in the initial search for Malaysia Flight 370, helped lead to the recovery of wreckage from Air France Flight 447 in the Atlantic. The pinger locator with the fin on top can go down 20,000 feet below the surface it's pulled slowly for hours and miles at a time, listening for the black box's signal.
(on camera): How far can it be in picking up? PAUL NELSON, PROJECT MANAGER, PHOENIX INTERNATIONAL: Outside edge is
about two miles, a mile and a half to two miles away, it can detect the sound.
TODD (voice-over): Even if the pinger's battery is fading, they might still detect it.
NELSON: The signal comes through the umbilical. You can see, here's a cable, runs through the umbilical, and it comes into our receiver unit. So we have a speaker on here, all the power buttons, and we can adjust the frequency it is looking for and out of this box we have a computer setup that graphically represents the signal you're hearing from the beacon.
TODD: The search area is now narrowed dramatically because Airbus located signals from the plane's ELT, the emergency locator transmitter. The ELT is an automated distress signal beacon and the EgyptAir A320 had three of them, including one in the tail. That signal has shrunk that search radius to as little as three miles.
TODD: While the narrowing of this search field is a positive sign, underwater experts are telling us that every day still is very crucial to successful detection of those pingers and of the recovery of the flight, data, cockpit voice recorders -- Wolf.
BLITZER: Brian, if the black boxes are located, what would happen next?
TODD: Well, we're told that the French authorities leading the effort might then deploy a second ship on the surface, which would deploy an underwater robot to complete the exploration and recovery. That in and of itself, Wolf, a very long process.
BLITZER: Yes, lots of work to do. Thanks very much, Brian, for that.
We're also following that large Trump protest outside the Trump campaign rally in San Diego. You're looking at police, there's a standoff right there with the protesters.
Another story we're following, dire warnings right now of the health disaster. Experts are sounding the alarm about the Zika virus and the Summer Olympic Games.
[1854:14] BLITZER: More than 100 health experts calling for the Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro to be postponed or moved, because of the threat of the Zika virus spread by mosquitoes and known to cause horrible birth defects.
Our senior international correspondent, Ivan Watson, is joining us live from Rio with the latest.
What is the latest? What are you hearing, Ivan? IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is a
very direct challenge, a public challenge coming from about 150 doctors and medical researchers from around the world, challenging the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization and arguing that the Olympics that are supposed to start here in Rio in just over two months, that they should be postponed or simply moved to another place. Why? Because they argue that we just don't know enough about the mosquito-borne Zika virus, specifically the Brazilian strain of that.
[18:55:05] And they say it's simply too dangerous to invite an expected half million tourists from around the world to come here, that some could contract the disease and then take it back to their home countries. In the event they go back to third world countries with poor health care infrastructure and health care systems, that that could pose a real threat to those societies in the long run.
Important to note here, Wolf, that just yesterday, the head of the CDC said that there is, quote, "no public health reason to cancel or delay the Olympics. The warnings at the CDC and World Health Organization have put out is for pregnant women to avoid coming here to the Olympics, for people to try to cover up and prevent being near mosquitoes, if they're here. The WHO also says stay away from poor neighborhoods of Rio, because that's -- those are areas where there are more mosquitoes. There's poorer sanitation -- Wolf.
BLITZER: The WHO, the World Health Organization. Ivan, we'll stay in touch with you, Ivan Watson, in Rio for us.
President Obama heading back to Washington tonight from his historic visit to Asia which wrapped up today with a visit to Hiroshima.
Our White House correspondent Michelle Kosinski is joining us right now.
Michelle, a very somber and powerful day where you are. Tell us how it went down.
MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Right, Wolf. You know, it's tough to fathom that right where we're standing, seventy- one years ago, was the center of just this obliteration, a scale of destruction at the hands of humans that the world hasn't seen before or since.
So, the Japanese people have been waiting a long time for a presidential visit here. Many who heard President Obama's comments this morning said that they cried. It was not an apology, not a policy speech. It wasn't speaking specifically to Americans or Japanese. He wanted to speak to humanity.
KOSINSKI (voice-over): Absolute silence as President Obama walked where no sitting American president has -- in the shadow of the one building remaining when a nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima before the faces now elderly that survived. The president addressed August 6th, 1945.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Seventy-one years ago, on a bright, cloudless morning, death fell from the sky and the world was changed. A flash of light and a wall of fire destroyed a city. We come to mourn the dead.
KOSINSKI: More than 100,000 of them. Pictures from that time seem unfathomable.
OBAMA: Mere words cannot give words to such suffering. But we have a shared responsibility to look directly into the eye of history and ask what we must do differently to curb such suffering again.
KOSINSKI: The White House found it inappropriate to apologize or second-guess the decision made by President Truman. But President Obama expressed his desire to stop the spread of nuclear weapons, calling on humanity to do better.
OBAMA: We must change our mindset about war itself. Among those nations like my own that hold nuclear stockpiles, we must have the courage to escape the logic of fear. And pursue a world without them.
KOSINSKI: He also paid tribute to the human kindness borne from suffering, hugging survivor Shigeaki Mori who set aside his anger and worked tirelessly for 40 years to gain official recognition for the 12 American prisoners of war who also died in the blast, tracking down their families.
Survivor Akira Kondo (ph) said of the president's visit, it took 71 years. It could have happened earlier.
From Motogo Onowe (ph), I'm very happy. Today, he's putting his words into practice.
They were all children then, now focused on those who will come after them.
OBAMA: That is the future we can choose. A future in which Hiroshima and Nagasaki are known not as the dawn of atomic warfare but as the start of our own moral awakening.
KOSINSKI: On the minds of Japanese people right now, the American election. They keep asking us, does Donald Trump really support nuclear proliferation? Remember, he said that maybe Japan and South Korea ought to get nuclear weapons to counter the North Korean threat -- Wolf.
BLITZER: Michelle Kosinski reporting for us. A powerful and historic day in Japan. Thank you so much for that.
Before we go, just want to say congratulations, best of luck to Chloe Rome, a member of our team leaving us tonight. We will miss you.
That's it for me. Thanks very much for watching. I'm Wolf Blitzer in Washington.
"ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts right now.