Return to Transcripts main page


Hillary on Trump University; EgyptAir Investigation Detects Signal; Ex-Employee: Trump University a 'Fraudulent Scheme'; Brazil's Political Turmoil Before the Rio Olympics. Aired 6-7p ET

Aired June 1, 2016 - 18:00   ET



WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Happening now: School or scam? Former employees say Donald Trump's so-called university preyed on vulnerable Americans, misleading them to spend tens of thousands on seminars. Tonight, we are digging deeper into the court documents, Trump's defense and the political fallout.

Targeting fraud. Hillary Clinton seizes on the evidence against Trump University, accusing the presumptive nominee Republican nominee of using similar tactics to pull one over on voters. I will ask Clinton's top spokesman about how her new effort to hit Donald Trump hard on multiple fronts will play out.

And tracking the pings. Investigators now say they have detected underwater signals from one of EgyptAir Flight 804's black boxes. Will the plane's crucial recorders and their clues be found before the batteries run out?

We want to welcome our viewers in the United States and around the world. I am Wolf Blitzer. You're in THE SITUATION ROOM.

Tonight, allegations of fraud by a business bearing Donald Trump's name are helping Hillary Clinton try to stoke voters' fears about the presumptive Republican nominee. Clinton is seizing on newly unsealed documents in a lawsuit against Trump University as she goes after her GOP rival with new intensity in interviews online and on the campaign trail.


HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is just more evidence that Donald Trump himself is a fraud. He is trying to scam America the way he scammed all those people at Trump U.


BLITZER: As Hillary Clinton takes on Trump, a just released poll puts her just two points ahead of Bernie Sanders in delegate-rich California. The Democratic rivals heading into their last big primary on Tuesday, when Hillary Clinton expects to lock up the nomination.

Also this hour, there's new urgency in the search for the black boxes from EgyptAir Flight 804. French investigators now believe they have detected underwater signals from one of the flight data recorders. Our correspondents, analysts and guests, they are standing bias as we cover the day's top stories, including Hillary Clinton's national press secretary Brian Fallon. He's standing by live as well.

Right now, let's go to CNN senior investigative correspondent Drew Griffin.

Drew, you have been digging deeper into the documents unseal in the Trump University case. What are you discovering?

DREW GRIFFIN, CNN INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: Well, what's so damning is that the declarations are from Trump University employees themselves, Wolf, and seem to corroborate what the three lawsuits against Trump University are alleging, that it wasn't really a school, it was a scheme to defraud gullible people out of thousands and thousands of dollars.


GRIFFIN (voice-over): Trump University preyed upon the elderly and uneducated to separate them from their money. That's the declaration of Ronald Schnackenberg, sales manager at Trump University from October 2006 through May of 2007.

Schnackenberg says that's when he quit, "Because I believed that Trump University was engaging in misleading, fraudulent and dishonest conduct."

Schnackenberg even cites an example of a couple he thought couldn't afford a $35,000 elite program he was supposed to sell them because of their precarious financial condition. He writes the couple would have had to pay for the program using disability income and taking out a loan based on the equity in his apartment.

He refused to make the sale, he says, and was reprimanded by Trump University. Then he stood by as another salesperson talked them in to buying the $35,000 seminar.

"I was disgusted," he wrote.

Connie Summer (ph), a sales event manager for six months at the school, said instructors used high-pressure sales techniques no matter the financial situation of the students. "I recall that some consumers had showed up who were homeless and could not afford the seminar," she writes.

"Yet I overheard Trump University representatives telling them, it's OK, just max out your credit card."

The declarations just released are part of an ongoing class-action lawsuit, one of three claiming the school was a fraud. Trump's defense so far, the declarations will be disputed in court. And on the campaign trail, Trump holds up high approval ratings for his school, while individually attacking his former students who have sued him. DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: So we have 10,000 surveys from former students giving Trump University rave reviews. So you have this guy Bob Guillo. He appeared in TV attack ads, even though he rated the programs a five, meaning excellent, the top mark, across the board.

GRIFFIN: This is Bob Guillo.


BOB GUILLO, TRUMP UNIVERSITY PARTICIPANT: suing It was a scam from the start.

GRIFFIN: He says he was suckered into a $35,000 worthless Trump University real estate course by a motivational speaker. And, yes, at that moment, he did give that instructor a five out of five.

GUILLO: And the reason we did that was that at every one of these retreats, the instructions would say your certificates of accomplishments are waiting for you in the back of the room, but you first have to fill out a questionnaire. And, guys, I want Donald Trump to invite me back to New York to teach more of these retreats, so please be kind, give me the highest rating possible.


GRIFFIN: Wolf, we have been asking all day from the Trump Organization about some sort of response to these declarations that were released from former Trump employees.

We finally got one literally just a few minutes ago. And I would like you to -- read you -- it comes from Daniel Borbet, a litigation paralegal with Trump.

"The declaration testimony of the former employees," he writes, "was recanted or completely discredited at their depositions." The Trump group says that these depositions were taken in 2012 and they will not be releasing the transcripts.

So, that's the response from the Trump Organization tonight -- Wolf.

BLITZER: All right, Drew, thank you very much.

The Trump campaign though clearly on the defensive tonight as more details are surfacing about lawsuits against Trump University.

Let's bring in our senior political reporter, Manu Raju.

Manu, another distraction as Donald Trump is clearly trying to unify the Republican Party right now.


Remember, the controversy over Trump University really didn't do much to damage Trump in the primary, but the real estate mogul is pushing back a lot more forcibly now, recognizing that the Clinton campaign is just not going to let this go.

Yet this all comes as Trump is getting some good news in the polls, but continues to face questions in his own party.


RAJU (voice-over): Tonight, Donald Trump pushing back at critics of Trump University, releasing positive testimonials from people his campaign says attended the program, and who call his for-profit college a resounding success.

But as he battles critics who contend the school took advantage of students, Trump is still reminded about this simple fact. The Republican Party is not fully behind him yet. A long-shot third-party candidate, Iraq War veteran and conservative writer David French, is being pushed by GOP pundit Bill Kristol. And House Speaker Paul Ryan remains a key holdout.

QUESTION: What is taking you so long?

REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Well, first of all, principle. Principles are what matter the most to conservatives like myself and the policies that come from those principles. That's not something that you just turn a dime on.

RAJU: This despite Donald Trump's own improving poll numbers. A new Quinnipiac poll finds Trump down by just four points to Clinton nationally and 86 percent of GOP voters would back Trump over Clinton with more than seven in 10 Republicans holding a favorable view of him.

REP. LEE ZELDIN (R), NEW YORK: Ultimately, the decision is between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton at this point. So holding out hope for this other Republican to emerge to be the next president at this point, it's just not going to happen.

RAJU: Controversy is bound to follow Trump overseas later this month, when he attends the opening one of his Scottish golf courses in his first trip abroad as the presumptive GOP nominee.

It will come a day after the U.K. votes on whether to stay as part of the European Union. And he could receive a rocky reception from the British Parliament, which threatened to ban him after he proposed his own temporary ban on Muslims entering the U.S.

DAVID CAMERON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I think his remarks are divisive, stupid and wrong. And I think if he came to visit our country, I think he'd unite us all against him.

RAJU: Back home, Trump is still attacking his favorite punching bag, the media. Facing criticism that he made big donations to veterans groups only after reporters began to inquire, today, Trump fired back, tweeting: "So I raised, gave $5.4 million for the veterans and the media makes me look bad. They do anything to belittle. Totally biased."


RAJU: Wolf, as we mentioned at the beginning of the piece, Donald Trump is trying to change the story about Trump University.

As you know, he's been going after the judge in the case, calling him unfair. And tonight he released those testimonials in support of Trump University. But even those videos may not be all that they seem.

CNN is actually looking into several new reports that some of the people in those videos may have other connections to Trump, including, Wolf, possible business dealings with him.

BLITZER: All right, Manu, thanks very much, Manu Raju reporting for us.

Also tonight, Hillary Clinton is borrowing a page or two from Donald Trump. She went on Twitter to declare Trump University was a fraud. Then she spread her message out there on the campaign trail.

Our senior Washington correspondent, Jeff Zeleny, is joining us now from New Jersey, where Hillary Clinton had an event today.

She got pretty tough. She pretty nasty as far as Trump is concerned, didn't she?


JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Tough, indeed, Wolf, calling him a fraud, saying that he's performing a scam on the American people.

It was some of the toughest words we have heard her use to go after Donald Trump, but as she was doing that, Bernie Sanders was going after California voters. Now she says she doesn't need to win California, but, Wolf, a new poll tonight says she may not.


CLINTON: This is just more evidence that Donald Trump himself is a fraud

ZELENY (voice-over): Tonight, Hillary Clinton, in pointed and personal terms, unloading on Donald Trump.

CLINTON: He is trying to scam America the way he scammed all those people at Trump U.

ZELENY: Seizing on the latest controversy surrounding her GOP rival, this time the business practices of Trump University. Clinton urging supporters in Newark to put her over the top in the final wave of primaries.

CLINTON: New Jersey, you have the chance to decide the nominee of the Democratic Party next Tuesday. ZELENY: Until Tuesday, Clinton has a five-day fight for California on

her hands, trying to ward off a Bernie Sanders victory. A new poll tonight shows Clinton with only a two-point lead.


ZELENY: Camping out in California all week, Sanders is taking delight in Clinton's decision to head West and join him on the campaign trail, despite her insurmountable lead in delegates.

SANDERS: I am shocked. And you know why? Because you all told me the campaign was over. I wonder why Secretary Clinton and her husband, Bill, are back in California.

ZELENY: Sanders is making the argument the race is not over.

SANDERS: I thought we had lost and it was all over, but I guess Secretary Clinton maybe is looking at some polling that suggests otherwise.

ZELENY: But Clinton is only 72 delegates away from clinching the nomination, according to a CNN estimate. But that includes superdelegates who can their minds until the convention.

SANDERS: They're going to say the nominating process is over, Secretary Clinton has won. That's factually incorrect.

ZELENY: Yet the race between Clinton and Trump is quickly passing Sanders by. The question is not whether she goes to the convention, but how she arrives, on a winning streak or with growing unease about her candidacy.

CLINTON: We're going to work hard. I want to be a Jersey girl.

ZELENY: New Jersey's own Jon Bon Jovi said the time is now for Clinton.

JON BON JOVI, MUSICIAN: I hope that soon we will all be calling her Madam President.

ZELENY: First, she will have to win the daily "ripped from the headlines" battle with Donald Trump. Today's topic, newly unsealed documents in a lawsuit against Trump University.

CLINTON: His own employees testified that Trump U. was a fraudulent scheme where Donald Trump enriched himself at the expense of hardworking people.

ZELENY: Flying to California today, Trump was unusually quiet as Clinton increasingly tries to take a page from his flood the zone playbook.

CLINTON: It's important that we recognize what he has done, because that's usually a pretty good indicator of what he will do. We see someone who is unqualified and unfit to be the United States. (END VIDEOTAPE)

ZELENY: And, Wolf, that argument of being unqualified and unfit continues tomorrow in a major foreign policy address Secretary Clinton is scheduled to deliver from San Diego. She is going to go hard after Donald Trump on that score.

But, Wolf, I can tell you they believe this Trump University creates so much fodder out there, because it goes right at the heart of his business acumen. They believe that could hurt him the most -- Wolf.

BLITZER: Jeff Zeleny reporting from New Jersey, thank you.

Joining us now, the national press secretary for the Hillary Clinton campaign, Brian Fallon.

Brian, thanks very much for joining us.


BLITZER: I want to get to Secretary Clinton's attacks on Trump University in a moment, but first your reaction to the new poll numbers just out tonight showing a tight race in California next Tuesday.

A new NBC News/Marist/"Wall Street Journal" poll shows she leads Senator Sanders by only two points, 49 percent to 47 percent. That's well within the margin of error. Donald Trump, as you know, he keeps saying Secretary Clinton simply can't close the deal with Bernie Sanders. Shouldn't she be further ahead in a big state like California?

FALLON: Well, Wolf, she's very far ahead when it comes to the popular vote nationally. She's very far ahead when it comes to the total in pledged delegates.

So the nomination is out of reach for Senator Sanders. That said, she has made a commitment that she wants to honor the primary process all the through the finish. And to be honest, this poll out of California doesn't surprise us. We have known for awhile now that the race in California is very tight.

But we intend to spend the remaining five days between now and next Tuesday in California campaigning very hard, and I think that we have a great story to tell, and great message to bring to voters in California.

BLITZER: But you have heard Senator Sanders today say if he wins California and he believes he says he can win California, even impressively, that will convince a lot of those so-called superdelegates to change their minds before the convention, leave Hillary Clinton and go to Bernie Sanders. Your reaction to that?


FALLON: I just don't see it happening, Wolf.

The reality is with a strong finish in New Jersey, of which we are increasingly confident, plus a strong finish in California, we can clinch a majority of the pledged delegates. Putting aside the superdelegates which Senator Sanders dislikes so much, if you just look at the pledged delegates, which are awarded based on the voters, outcomes in these primary states, she will clinch a majority of those pledged delegates on Tuesday by virtue of her finishes in New Jersey and California.

That will essentially rob Senator Sanders of any remaining argument, because it will mean that even if you discount the superdelegates entirely, she would have won on pledged delegates alone.

BLITZER: Is she focusing too early right now on Donald Trump, not enough on Bernie Sanders?

FALLON: No, I don't think so, Wolf. We know that she's going to be the nominee, and we are only six months out from this general election and there's even less time than that if you count the beginning of early voting in some of these states.

We have to begin to frame the choice for the voters, because the stakes are so high, in terms of what Donald Trump would bring to the Oval Office. Tomorrow, she's going to be making that case from a foreign policy standpoint, giving a speech in San Diego, talking about her vision for foreign policy vs. his very dangerous approach, which would alienate our allies.

He's talked about wanting to withdraw from NATO, talked about wanting to have -- allow more countries to acquire nuclear weapons. He has offended our allies like Israel and David Cameron in the U.K. This is just a dangerous approach we can't afford. She's going to make that case tomorrow. We have to make that case.

BLITZER: She's making the case against him as far as Trump University is concerned. She is going all out on that.

Does she believe he actually committed some sort of criminal activity, some sort of fraud?

FALLON: We don't know enough yet to know whether there's any criminal activity here, but we do know that there's no small number of civil lawsuits brought by former students of his as well as an ongoing inquiry led by the New York state attorney general.

And this is very explosive in terms of what was revealed last night, Wolf. I tend to think that that meandering press conference he gave yesterday, where he attacked the media, was intended as a smokescreen to distract from these very explosive documents that were released last night, because with the release of these documents, it is no longer just the Clinton campaign or Republicans like Mitt Romney saying that Trump University was a scam.

It's no longer the former students that are bringing these lawsuits. It is actually the employees that worked for Donald Trump that were sales managers pedaling these fraudulent scams, intending to prey on individuals that were the most vulnerable members of the public in terms of elderly and other single parents that couldn't afford to pay their bills and were struggling to get a leg up.

I think the reason why this is resonating so deeply is because it exposes Donald Trump's approach to business as one that's trying to prey on and profit from people's hardship. And that exposes him in terms of the campaign that he is waging right now. He is going around suggesting that he is going to be devoted to improving people's economic situation, when in reality his whole campaign is intended to promote Donald Trump, just like Trump University.

BLITZER: As you say, we witnessed an extremely contentious Donald Trump at that news conference yesterday. He spent a lot of the time attacking the news media.

But he also later tweeted this. I will put it up on the screen. "I am getting great credit for my press conference today. Crooked Hillary should be admonished for not having a press conference in 179 days."

Why hasn't she held a formal, open news conference he says in 179 days? We have done checking. It's about right.

FALLON: Well, that's a bit of a misnomer, Wolf.

As Dan Merica, who travels with us on behalf of CNN, can tell you, she does availabilities all the time. The only thing missing there that might define it as a press conference is a formal podium.

But I do think we will do press conference-style question-and-answer sessions soon again. But the reality is, she does interviews all the time, including on this network. She's frequently a guest of yours and other shows on this network. So, there's no question that she's afraid to answer.

We are happy to be out there, and we want to be part of this conversation on a day-to-day basis to talk about the high stakes of this election and the contrast between her and Donald Trump.

BLITZER: Yes, Dan Merica told me, because I checked with him, she does do these informal gaggles, including May 9 in Virginia, but the last formal news conference, a formal news conference, was back on December 4 in Iowa. Is she going to do one before California?

FALLON: I am sure we will do another one soon. But the reality is she takes questions from Dan and his colleagues that are in our traveling press corps all the time. And we're going to continue to do that.

BLITZER: All right, stand by, Brian. We have more to discuss. We will take a quick break. We will be right back.



BLITZER: We're back with Hillary Clinton campaign national press secretary Brian Fallon.

Brian, Bernie Sanders indicating he might be open to sharing a ticket with Hillary Clinton as a vice presidential running mate, assuming she's the nominee.

Would Hillary Clinton considering naming Senator Sanders as her running mate?

FALLON: Well, we are not focused on that right now, Wolf. We still have a primary that we want to finish out, including in California, as we just talked about, next Tuesday, New Jersey and other states, so we're not focused on that at the moment.

I think when the time comes, and when she sits down, and builds a short list of folks to consider for her vice presidential slot, she is going to want to take an expansive look. And I think that among the factors that she's going to consider are who can do the job of president, who would be a good partner to serve with in government. I think she believes in a strong vice president.

But, in terms of actual names, I think it's too early to speculate.

BLITZER: As you know, President Obama, he's in Indiana today touting his economic record over the past nearly eight years. He's making the case for electing more Democrats in November.

Your campaign chief, Robby Mook, he told CNN today that the president will endorse Hillary Clinton quickly after she secures the nomination.


Here's the question. How does the campaign plan on using President Obama out there on the campaign trail?

FALLON: Well, look, I think as you saw today from President Obama's appearance in Indiana, this is someone who is thirsting to get out there, and make the case.

I think that he has a great record and legacy to talk about for his own part and I think he is very anxious to give his true, unvarnished thoughts about what he thinks about Donald Trump as the Republican Party's nominee.

So, we look forward to him making that case and as many appearances and as much time as he is able to devote to campaign travel over the coming months. I think that there's plenty of voters out there that will be happy to hear from him, and we will be happy to have him make as many appearances as he can.

BLITZER: And the point of her major foreign policy address tomorrow in San Diego, what do we expect to hear from her?

FALLON: I think she is going to give a very sweeping discussion of the high stakes in terms of our approach to conducting foreign policy that the next president will inherit.

And she is going to both do an affirmative laydown of how she would approach the job of commander in chief, and compare and contrast that with Donald Trump. And I think that, when it comes to Donald Trump, he's talked down America, suggested that America's place in the world is somehow reduced in recent years, and that the solution to the challenges that we face in the 21st century right now is to shrink from the world, withdraw, alienate our own allies.

She is going to challenge that approach. She's going to lay out why she thinks that he would be such a dangerous fit as commander in chief, talk about how he would want to allow more nations to acquire nuclear weapons, withdraw from NATO, take a very dangerous approach to the Middle East situation, alienating our allies, talking up people like Kim Jong-un in North Korea.

On a variety of issues, I think she is going to lay out the case. And this is going to be sort of a tentpole of a larger argument that we're going to make over the next five months, which is that he is just too dangerous and uniquely unqualified to play the role of commander in chief.

BLITZER: Brian Fallon, thanks very much for joining us.

FALLON: Thank you, Wolf.

BLITZER: Just ahead, we will have more on the fraud allegations against Trump University. How can the presumptive Republican nominee change the conversation?

Plus, there are new developments tonight in the EgyptAir Flight 804 investigation. Will the pings that have now been detected lead to the black boxes and will it happen fast enough?


BLITZER: Donald Trump's defunct university is coming back to haunt him tonight, as court documents detail allegations of fraud, and Hillary Clinton is pouncing on the controversy.

[18:32:12] Let's bring in our panel: Rebecca Berg, national political reporter for Real Clear Politics; our CNN correspondent Sunlen Serfaty; our chief political analyst, Gloria Borger; and CNN political commentator Ana Navarro.

Gloria, the bad news about Trump University for Donald Trump continues. Trump doesn't like negative information circulating about him and his businesses. So how might he try to change the conversation, which he often has been very good at doing?

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: I was talking to a bunch of Republicans today about this, Wolf, asking that very question, and the answer that came up a couple of times is talk about what your administration would look like and how you would govern.

In other words, one way to change the conversation might be surprising. Name the people in your administration. Who would be your secretary of defense? Who would be your secretary of state? He says he wants to name the vice president at convention. OK, set that aside. But who's your national security adviser? Who's the team you'd be talking to?

Because, as these Republicans pointed out, I mean, look, Donald Trump has gotten every vote he's going to get for someone named Trump. What he now has to do is figure out a way to get those people who are not sure about Hillary Clinton and get other people who say, "Oh, I like the people he's surrounding himself with. So even if I have questions about Donald Trump, I kind of like the team."

That would be a really interesting way to change the conversation.

BLITZER: You know, it's interesting, Rebecca. Donald Trump says he's got affidavit statements from a lot of these students who attended Trump University, saying they loved it; they learned a lot about business; they wound up making money. He released a video with three of those clients or students, whatever you want to call them.

But the New York state attorney general, he's really going after the fraud allegations, $40 million suit. A presidential candidate with allegations of fraud, how does he deal with this right now?

REBECCA BERG, NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER, REAL CLEAR POLITICS: Well, we're seeing him begin to deal with it with these testimonials, by people who were involved in Trump University, took the courses or seminars, whatever you would like to call them, and were pleased with the results. And so this is his defense in the early stages, at least.

It will be interesting to see how he moves this argument forward, though, Wolf, because all of these legal proceedings are ongoing. The court case out of San Diego, which is one of these other civil trials involving Trump University, is not going to be settled until after the election. Trump is not going to testify in that case until the end of November.

And so it's really going to be a question of can he win the argument against Hillary Clinton on this? And we're already seeing her calling him a con man, a fraud, some very strong language. Sort of you seeing, actually, the Bain textbook from 2012 with Mitt Romney that worked very well with Democrats, trying to show that he was not working in people's best interests. And so that's what we see Democrats doing now, and that's what we see Trump pushing back against.

[18:35:08] BLITZER: Having said all that, though, Sunlen, take a look at our latest CNN poll of polls. These are national polls among voters out there. Look at how close it is. Right now, Hillary Clinton 45 percent, Donald Trump 43 percent. What are you hearing, because you've been out there on the campaign trail? Do you expect these numbers to stay as close as they are right now?

SERFATY: Well, it certainly could, of course, with the obvious caveat that so much is unpredictable in this election season. But the conventional wisdom certainly is that Hillary Clinton, when and if she becomes the Democratic nominee, she does stand to get a boost of support out there once she does. Other polls show that between 66 and 75 percent of Bernie Sanders supporters would go on to support her. But that leaves an awful lot of Democratic votes on the table.

And, two, so key to that is what does Bernie Sanders do? Does he, indeed, take this all the way to the convention? How will she pick up that support. So a lot still unpredictable.

BLITZER: A lot unpredictable, because a lot of those Bernie Sanders supporters, in some of the exit polls, have said they would actually vote for Donald Trump in a general election, if they had the chance.

Ana, let's move on and talk a little bit about Bill Kristol, the editor of "The Weekly Standard." The rumored third-party candidate he's seeking, the name David French all of a sudden emerging. Does any of this have a chance of really getting off the ground?

ANA NAVARRO, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: You know, I'd like to think so. I'd like to hope so. I certainly would like to have a candidate, almost any candidate that I could cling my hopes to. But I think this is going to be very, very difficult for Mr. French. He starts this with basically no name I.D., with no fundraising network, with no real base. And it is June. It is not only the start of the hurricane season; it is -- you know, the political season got started a year ago. And it's going to be very difficult for him.

He'd have to mount a campaign where, in some states there's going to be either legal challenges to be on the ballot or write-in campaigns. And if you don't have a structure, if you don't have a network, if you don't have a name I.D., if you don't have the money, if you don't have the skills, if you don't have the experience, I just think it's very, very, very, very difficult.

BLITZER: What are you hearing, Gloria, from your sources?

BORGER: Well, you know, what Republicans are saying is that David French is very credible, a very decent human being. But they believe that he's really more of a sort of a conscience harbor than anything else, and that you have to see, as Ana says, whether he could raise the money to have credible ballot access, and that remains a huge question.

And seriously, you would want somebody, if you want to throw it into the House of Representatives, you would want somebody who could get about 40 electoral votes or so, 20 or which might be in purple states. And they don't seem to think that David French really -- really has a shot at that. So while they like him very much, and they consider him very respectable and very smart, they don't think it's going to have much impact.

The name they throw out, of course, is that if Tom Coburn, former Senator Tom Coburn, would have done it, he would have been able to attract that kind of support, particularly among conservatives who are skeptical about Donald Trump. But David French, they say, just doesn't have the same heft that Coburn does. BLITZER: As you guys point out, virtually no name recognition. An Iraq War veteran, Harvard Law School grad, clearly an intelligent guy.

BORGER: Exactly.

BLITZER: But nobody knows. Very few people outside of Washington really know this guy, at least right now.

All right. Everyone stand by. We'll take a quick break. Much more right after this.


[18:43:02] BLITZER: Hillary Clinton is seizing on the controversy surrounding Trump University. She's using it to hammer away at the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.

Gloria, she's targeting Trump today big-time, issuing several tweets, including this one. Let me read it to you: "FACT: Trump University identified those most vulnerable and then targeted them with predatory marketing tactics." Is this her new strategy?

BORGER: Yes, I think it's -- it's a multi-pronged strategy, but you know, clearly, one part of it is to go after Donald Trump's character and to go after Donald Trump's temperament. You know, Hillary Clinton is well aware that her own negatives are very high. Only 19 percent of people believe she's honest and trustworthy, but only 12 percent of voters believe that Donald Trump has the temperament to be president of the United States. And so she's going to kind of hit him where it hurts, but she's also going to go after him on foreign policy, delivering a speech on foreign policy.

So she'll -- she'll go after him on the character issues, and then she'll also go after him on the -- on the substantive issues, as well, and also the question of -- of how he would govern. So I think it's -- you know, it's multi-dimensional.

BLITZER: She's using her Twitter followers like he's using his.

BORGER: Oh, sure.

BLITZER: She has, what, almost six-and-a-half million followers on Twitter. He has 8 and a half million followers on Twitter. So there are a lot of followers both of them have, and they're going to play that Twitter game, I'm sure.


BLITZER: Rebecca, let's talk about this new NBC News/"Wall Street Journal"/Marist poll out. Democratic primary voters in California. Look at how close it is: Hillary Clinton, 49 percent; Bernie Sanders, 47 percent. How damaging, though, would a loss for Hillary Clinton in California?

BERG: Well, it's not going to be damaging in terms of delegates, because this is a proportional contest, and Hillary Clinton, the math is still on her side. As her campaign has been saying for weeks, she is the presumptive nominee, essentially, for the Democratic Party.

But it's not going to be a triumphant moment for her. It's certainly not the finish that she wanted to this race. And it doesn't give her any sort of momentum, going into the convention and in terms of uniting her party moving forward.

[18:45:00] Bernie Sanders is going to be -- and it doesn't give her any sort of momentum going in to the convention and in terms of uniting her party moving forward. Bernie Sanders is going to be able to make some demands to the Democratic Party, maybe have starring (ph) role at the convention by showing this power among the voters of California.

And I should have note that in 2008 when Barack Obama was very strong and surging, Hillary Clinton still manage to win in California. The fact that she might not be able to do it this time is very significant.

BLITZER: You know, some of the public policy institute poll (ph) a lot in California. It also shows Hillary Clinton leading Sanders by two points right now, well, within a margin there. So, could Bernie Sanders really beat Hillary Clinton in California?

SERFATY: Well he could. And I think this poll show just how close it is in California. I was out in Bernie Sanders all last week in the state and I could tell you he's being very bullish about his chances. And he is really authoring (ph) every resource he's got at the state right now.

And I do think that we can read a lot into what the Clinton campaign thinks about their chances looking at their campaign schedule. Clinton has, you know, thrown out there in New Jersey event this week. Now she's going to California that five-day special start tomorrow. They're dispatching Bill Clinton into the state as well.

You know, the Clinton campaign says that they are not surprise by these polls. That they want to finish (ph) strong in California, finish (ph) strong in New Jersey and that their goal for next Tuesday night is of course to clinch the nomination and that of course can happen (inaudible).

BLITZER: Ana, the president as you know is out in Indiana today, what role would you think he will play in the eventual contest assuming Hillary Clinton wraps up the democratic presidential nomination? I'm visible, does he need to be in this 2016 race?

ANA NAVARRO, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think he's going to ends up being very visible because there is no way that Hillary Clinton can win unless she can bring out that Obama coalition. And frankly, she doesn't generate that level of enthusiasm. She doesn't know how to do it. She's not the national politician as she herself had admitted that her husband or Barack Obama are.

So I think she's going to need President Obama to go out there and wave those pom poms awfully (ph) hard, remind all those people that voted for him that it is -- that he is the keeper of flame. She is the one that he is passing it on to and that they must go out and vote her. I also think he's going to play the role of unifier and chief.

Whatever happens and whenever it ends up happening on the democratic side it's going to be a lot of disaffected, disenfranchised democrats who voted for Bernie Sanders or who voted for Hillary Clinton. They only have a month to get up together. The convention has been moved up a month. They've got to get, you know, kiss and make-up the month of July. And I think President Obama will play a role in that.

BLITZER: Yeah, good point. So let's see if he can make peace between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton after this contest (ph) has wrapped up one way.

All right guys, let's standby. Just ahead, there's new information coming in a new clue in the search for the EgypAir jet that crashed to the Mediterranean with 66 people on board. Tonight, investigators maybe one step closer in solving the deadly mystery.


BLITZER: A major new development tonight in the search for EgyptAir Flight 804 which crashed to the Mediterranean last month. Officials involved in the search now saying a signal has been detected and believed to be from one of the plains black boxes. CNN's Brian Todd is working in the story for us.

So Brian, these boxes can certainly help solve the mystery.

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: They could Wolf. These boxes could determine once and for all if it was a bomb that brought down the EgyptAir jet a mechanical failure or something else. But tonight there is uncertainty looming in this investigation over whether the search teams have the right equipments on hand to recover the black boxes quickly.


TODD: Tonight, a breakthrough but no answers in the search for EgyptAir Flight 804, the doomed plane that dropped from the sky two weeks ago.

French investigators say they are now focused on a small area of the Mediterranean Sea after detecting an underwater signal from one of the planes data recorders, those so called black boxes.

The ping was picked up by specialized locator equipment on board the French vessel Laplace. But while the signal may have narrowed the search, the clock is still ticking. Investigators have been looking for the boxes in the fuselage for 14 days. The pingers emitting those signals from the boxes die out in about two more weeks.

Deep sea search experts say finding their exact locations and retrieving the boxes quickly is crucial.

STEVEN SAINT-AMOUR, DEEP SEA SEARCH EXPERT: The next step would be the (inaudible) and definitely, you know, find the other wreckage and, you know, do a survey of the debris film (ph). TODD: That won't be easy. The black boxes could be at a deep of almost two miles below the surface. Egyptian authority say a specialized ship equipped to retrieve them is on their way. That ship, the John Lethbridge has a remotely operated vehicle with manipulator arms that can pick up the boxes. But the Lethbridge won't be onsite for almost a week.

Are they losing crucial tide here while this vessel moves into place?

SAINT-AMOUR: Yes. You know, at the state there's no reason to wait, you know, there are assets in the area, you know, that are capable of, you know, performing the next stages of the search. You know, it's critical to get in the -- on the wreck site.

TODD: Egyptian and French investigators insist they've got the best companies with the most advanced technology deployed in the search but expert say even if the pingers are located, the black boxes could have separated from them. It could be somewhere else.

U.S. officials have said they were working under the theory that a bomb brought the plane down, but investigators say they're not rolling anything out and so far, no group has claimed responsibility. Finding the black boxes could unlock the mystery.

MICHAEL GOLDFARB, FORMER FAA CHIEF OF STAFF: The flight data recorder says so much about the forms that aircraft that the speculation whether it was catastrophic failure or -- what is it -- a bomb can -- mostly being answered there. The cockpit voice recorder is critical because the cruise last 30 minutes of the flight is recorded. Was there any sense of stress there a lot (ph)?

TODD: The difficulty of finding the black boxes underwater is now leading some aviation experts to call for deployable black boxes. Data recorders mounted near the tail that pop off after a crash.


TODD: But right now deployable black boxes are used primarily in military aircraft not commercial planes. They are known to work.

The U.S. Navy says this deployable black box from a fighter jet was found on a beach in Hawaii six years after that jet crashed, and when they found it Wolf, the box still work.

BLITZER: Interesting. Brian, regarding the signals that have just been detected, there's a slight chance that could be false positives, right?

TODD: That has been known to happen with a slight chance of that. Veterans would just tell us sometimes marine live especially whales send out signals that are confused for pingers. Sometimes search equip and put in the water in it similar signals but they say these pingers do have a very distinct frequency so experts do believe in this they've got a real signals from those black boxes.

This now question they've got to get the assets in the water that can recover those much more quickly than the (inaudible) at the moment.

BLITZER: That's what they can. All right, thanks very much Brian.

We just over two months away from the start of the summer Olympic Games in Rio De Janeiro but the world spotlight shining on Brazil right now is highlighting serious political turmoil that's rocking the country. Our senior international correspondent Ivan Watson reports.


IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: When the Honor Guard arrives to greet foreign diplomats at the presidential palace, so do the protesters demanding the resignation of the brand new interim president, Michel Temer. Brazil faces a political crisis during a time of great economic pain.

A fresh scandal this month forced a top cabinet minister to announce his resignation. The irony, this is one of the politicians who spearheaded the impeachment process against President Dilma Rousseff, forcing her to step down earlier this month for allegedly breaking budgetary laws, which she denies.

More than two-thirds of the Congress here voted in favor of an impeachment process of the elected Brazilian president. But many of these lawmakers are themselves implicated in a variety of corruption scandals.

Do you think there's a lot of corruption in this room?


WATSON: Part of the problem is it's tough to govern here, when there are dozens of political parties represented in the Brazilian Congress. There's even a professional clown, a comedian, who was applauded when he cast his vote for the impeachment of the president.

Polls show she had single-digit popularity ratings when suspended. But so does the legislature that suspended her.

People don't respect you?

BOLSANARO: No. Yeah, they don't respect. We don't have too much credibility together with the society.

WATSON: And it hasn't helped politician's credibility that several ministers in the new interim government also appear to be under investigation for alleged wrongdoing.

The changing of the political guard in this country is still very, very complicated.

The elected president, Dilma Rousseff, is still living over here in the official presidential residence, and she is vowing to fight the impeachment proceedings against her.

Ivan Watson, CNN, Brasilia. (END VIDEO CLIP)

BLITZER: Finally, we're marking (ph) a CNN milestone. We started bringing you the news exactly 36 years ago this hour.


DAVID WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening I'm David Walker.

LOIS HART, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Lois Hart. Now, here is the news.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: ... on one's convictions while others ...


BLITZER: It was all the visit of this man, Ted Turner would be skeptics to start the world first 24-hour global cable news network in over the last 36 years. We've been so proud to bring you the news all of the history as it happens.

We want to thank all of our viewers here in United States and around the world for trusting us to be your source for news.

[18:55:02] That's it for me, thanks very much for watching. I'm Wolf Blitzer in Washington. "ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts right now.