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Pet Mattresses; Arrest Made in Mississippi Nuns Slaying; Tim Kaine Says Trump Pushes KKK Values; National Day of Mourning as Italy Honors Earthquake Victims; Trump Health Assessment Valid?; Heroin Overdoses on Rise in Midwest. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired August 27, 2016 - 07:00   ET



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know it's funny since the day we launched the cast for a bed, the most popular social media posts of our customers are our four legged friends jumping on the bed and testing it out. And so we thought we'd make one design specifically for them. And so we actually studied what dogs needed to get a good night of sleep and what the perfect design would be for a dog mattress and introducing the Casper Dog Mattress.

YRKEVICH: It's the perfect mattress for every dog. But what if my dog is just not that into it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just like we offer a 100 night trial on the Casper mattress, we offer 100 night trial on the Casper dog mattress as well.

YRKEVICH: Even if it's been used and abused?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Even if it's been used and abused, absolutely.

YRKEVICH: Is this just like a marketing ploy to get people to buy more human mattresses?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, not at all, I mean look at the design and care that went into the mattress and this took us a year of development. We went through tons of iterations and we're really proud of this product.

YRKEVICH: I'm not like super excited to go out and buy a mattress. It's not like the top thing that's going to happen in my day. How have you been able to make mattresses cool again?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's a good question. I think we were just so different to anything out there that it really resonated with people. We heard that before we launched, no-one likes buying a mattress and we thought we could make it a fun experience.

YRKEVICH: And you've included all humans but you're missing like a potential customer with the mattress for pets.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Who are you thinking about?

YRKEVICH: Well I'm thinking about cats, obviously. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We'll see what the future holds.

TIM KAINE, DEMOCRATIC VICE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: He has supporters like David Duke connected with the Ku Klux Klan.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you want white supremacists to vote for you?


KAINE: Ku Klux Klan values. David Duke values, Donald Trump values are not American values.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Whoever committed this brutal act, I pray for that person.

BLACKWELL: Rodney Earl Sanders charged with two counts of murder in connection with the deaths of two nuns.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They lived their lives to try to make the world better for the people who have nothing.

BLACKWELL: At least ten water rescues occurred overnight in Kansas City, as a flash flood emergency was issued for the metro region.


CHRISTI PAUL, HOST: So grateful to have you on this Saturday. I'm Christi Paul.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, HOST: Good morning to you, I'm Victor Blackwell.

PAUL: I want to tell you about an arrest this morning that we're learning about in what Mississippi authorities describe as a heinous crime.


PAUL: Two nuns stabbed to death in their home.

BLACKWELL: Police say this is the man responsible. Rodney Earl Sanders. They say he broke into their house in Lexington and killed them. Now Margaret Held and Paula Merrill worked as nurse practitioners serving one of the state's poorest counties.

PAUL: Our Polo Sandoval is following this story.


PAUL: This arrest came pretty quickly when you think about it. Are police revealing how it was that they were led to him?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Not quite. At least not yet. And in fact you know what's interesting here we don't know a whole lot of who this individual is.

We do know that he was actually arrested after what investigators described as a very lengthy interview as they continue to piece this case together as we try to piece together a particular motive. What we do know is this 46 year old man now been identified by investigators as Rodney Earl Sanders he was arrested and charged with capital murder. Investigators believe that he broke into the home that was shared by these two sisters, Margaret Held and Paula Merrill, they are two nuns who as you guys mentioned a short while ago actually serve the community providing medical assistance for those in need in one of the state's poorest counties.


SANDOVAL: Their bodies were discovered on Thursday in their home after they failed to show up at the clinic. Investigators - police officers rather actually showed up at the home and found signs of forced entry. Eventually, though, their bodies found inside their home. The question here, what is the motive?

No information has been released on any possible link between Sanders and these two sisters. Officials with the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation have only said that he was a person of interest early in the investigation, Christi and Victor. But what's interesting here is this community now coming together in prayer, not just for the families of these two women, but even for the suspect himself.


SANDOVAL: I think what this does it really does speak to this sense of community and this unity in what is a very small community. And again, investigators have not released a whole lot of information yet. They did recover the vehicle that belonged to one of the victims but they're short of calling this an actual robbery at least not yet.

PAUL: Yes, all right. Polo, thank you so much and a lot of developments in there overnight.

BLACKWELL: All right, let's turn to Kansas City, Missouri, the metro area there, under water. Look at this.


BLACKWELL: People are struggling to deal with this. The National Weather Service calling this extremely dangerous, life-threatening situation. You understand why. Look at the cars here. Just the roof of this one, toads impassible although some people tried and they found themselves in situations like this. High waters there and some people having to be rescued.

PAUL: Emergency crews. You see them here they've just been working around the clock to rescue people who are trapped by these floods and you see what some of that takes. Wading into that waist deep or more water, with a flashlight, looking in these vehicles to make sure nobody is trapped there.


PAUL: And the power is out which only makes matters worse for those folks. The flash flooding is part of a severe weather system though that brought the threat of tornadoes and hail early yesterday. Residents there are reporting downed tree limbs and branches in the streets. There are no signs of any damaged buildings thus far and so far no reports of anyone being seriously hurt.


BLACKWELL: Democratic Vice Presidential nominee Tim Kaine is launching a new line of attack against Donald Trump linking the GOP nominee to the values of the Ku Klux Klan.


KAINE: Donald Trump is their candidate because Donald Trump is pushing their values. Ku Klux Klan values, David Duke values Donald Trump values are not American values.

BLACKWELL: Well, Kaine's comments come just a day after Hillary Clinton gave a major speech, linking Donald Trump in his campaign, the new CEO to the politically volatile alt-right movement. But Republicans, some of them are firing back, calling the allegations repugnant lies perpetrated by a desperate Clinton Kaine campaign.

CNN national correspondent Diane Gallagher is following the story for us.


BLACKWELL: And this is, I don't know whether to say it's ramping up or sliding down into new depths of heights, Diane.

DIANE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, Victor, it's really interesting to sort of watch how this is playing out here. It's the candidates trying to cast the other one as the most racist. And Tim Kaine's just acting as running mates often do. The attack dog here.

Of course this is taking what Hillary Clinton said in that Thursday speech quite a bit further in the rhetoric at this point. And the RNC, of course, jumping on that very quickly, Victor. I can tell you they issued a statement pretty immediately afterwards saying that Tim Kaine sunk to new lows with dirty and deplorable attacks which have no place in this campaign.

Now of course, the Clinton campaign had issue with Donald Trump calling Hillary Clinton a bigot in his speech. So they've been trading these barbs back and forth. But Shaun Spicer who is the RNC spokesperson called for in a tweet, Democrats who denounce these Tim Kaine comments and said if not they are complicit Trump surrogates have also taken issue with it. Now Donald Trump himself has not weighed in on Kaine's particular comments but you may recall that after Hillary Clinton gave that speech saying that Trump is running a campaign based in prejudice, well, he said that she was casting his supporters in a negative light saying that she was trying to, "smear" them. So Victor this really is just sort of a back and forth between not

just the two candidates anymore but the two parties right now trying to cast the other one as the one that is the least favorable for minorities here.

BLACKWELL: All right, what's the impact? We'll find out in just a moment. Diane Gallagher, thanks so much and we'll get that answer from our political panel standing by. We're going to talk about Kaine's comments and whether they really will have an impact on this campaign. Stay with us.



BLACKWELL: All right. 11 minutes after the hour now. And let's get you on the top political story we talked about just a minute ago. Tim Kaine turn as a political attack dog, saying that Donald Trump pushes the values of the Ku Klux Klan and David Duke. To discuss, we're joined by CNN Political Commentator and Donald Trump supporter Jeffrey Lord. Along with Democratic Strategist Danielle McLaughlin, also a Clinton supporter. Good morning to both of you.



BLACKWELL: Good morning to you Jeffery, good morning to you Danielle. I want to start with you, Danielle, after we heard Hillary Clinton's speech on Thursday about Donald Trump and the alt-right and Steve Bannon. And you watched it, our viewers watched it. There was not this rush from the RNC to attack those statements to defend Donald Trump but after what we heard from Tim Kaine on Friday there was. Did Tim Kaine go too far?

MCLAUGHLIN: Well as you said, Victor, he's playing the role of the attack dog which is what a vice presidential candidate does. I think they need to be very careful about not getting down into the weeds with this. As Michelle Obama said, when they go low, you go high. And for the rest of this campaign Hillary Clinton's message has been one of unity and togetherness. She's talked about love and has run a very positive campaign. So, I think that the comments that Trump made about her, that she was a bigot had to be addressed, you can't just take that lying down, but I think they need to pivot back to the issues, back to the ideas because that's where they're going to win.

BLACKWELL: Do you think it was a mistake?

MCLAUGHLIN: I don't think it was a mistake, but I think they need to leave it behind.

BLACKWELL: All right, let me come to you, Jeffrey. We've heard from supporters of Donald Trump who are calling this out of bounds. The statement from the RNC Tim Kaine sunk to new lows with the dirty, deplorable attacks. This comes from the RNC who is obviously supporting Donald Trump who just days earlier called Hillary Clinton a bigot. And during this campaign has called her several other names.

So is this appropriate for them to now, or Donald Trump to be so surprised by this, or the RNC to be so offended by the statements?

LORD: Victor, I had to say, when I heard Tim Kaine say this, I laughed because this is so unbelievably cynical. In 1964, I've gone back and looked at these things. In 1964, the Democratic Party had a commercial featuring the Alabama wizard of the Ku Klux Klan saying "I like Barry Goldwater, he needs our help." In 1980, when Ronald Reagan was running against Jimmy Carter, they said that he was tied to the Ku Klux Klan. This is one of the oldest tricks in the Democratic playbook. Yes is it scurrilous, is it racist, is it terrible? Yes, but at this point, it's been tried so many times. It's just cynical. Laughably cynical. And they ought to be embarrassed.

BLACKWELL: Let me come back to you, Danielle and you said that they need to get back to the issues. Is this the proverbial jumping the shark where we're now, no, you're a bigot, no, you're a bigot. No you push the KKK. I mean at some point, do we get back to talking about because I would love to have the immigration conversation, to have the gun control conversation but this is what people are following and this is what we're discussing. Can we make that pivot back to issues, to policy?

MCLAUGHLIN: Well we have to. You know I think Donald Trump has made this a race to the bottom. He has campaigned on division and name calling. It's we have - I'm really still waiting to hear his immigration plan and we're what 70 days out from the election. This should be about the issues that's what people on Main Street want to hear about. They don't want to hear about name calling. But I respect Clinton's right to punch back because it's obvious he has been name calling from the very get-go. Not only against his primary opponents but certainly against her.


MCLAUGHLIN: We should have a conversation about immigration. I would love to know what Donald Trump actually wants to do with immigration except for build a wall. Which, by the way, 60% of Americans don't want that to happen.

BLACKWELL: We're going to talk about that immigration policy and how it's coming together a little later in the show. But Jeffrey, it's difficult for some voters to get to the policy proposals from Donald Trump because they hear rhetoric that is disturbing. I brought it up last hour and I'm going to bring it up with you. This Quinnipiac poll that was out just out on Thursday, and 60% nearly, 59%, to be precise, of the voters polled said that they "believe that the way Donald Trump talks appeals to bigotry." Does he have to do a better job of articulating these positions? And does he need to come out and be a little more forceful about not wanting those votes of white supremacists?

LORD: Well first of all, he does want the vote of the white supremacists. But the real point here is I think we need to have the discussion of what is bigotry. When you take African-Americans for granted as the Democratic Party has routinely done. You know Victor they still - they're talking about the Ku Klux Klan, I don't know if you know this in 1924, they couldn't even pass a resolution at the Democratic convention condemning the Ku Klux Klan. They haven't apologized for slavery for heaven's sakes.

BLACKWELL: But that was - that was a different Democratic party.

LORD: They've got a - they've got a real problem -

BLACKWELL: We know the difference between the Democratic party pre and post (inaudible).

MCLAUGHLIN: And frankly you know Jeffrey you do this all the time you talk about the southern democratics, it's a different party.

BLACKWELL: Hold on. Hold on. Jeffrey finish and then I'll bring you back in Danielle.

LORD: The new deal was built on racism. I mean frankly Roosevelt boasted to Justice Hugo Black who was a Klan member that a lot of his friends were Klan members. Their formula always is race plus progressivism equals political power. They still do that. That's it. So we need to -- if we're going to have a discussion about bigotry, we ought to have a discussion about how it's used in the modern day Democratic Party with Al Sharpton and Loraza and all of that kind of thing.

BLACKWELL: All right, Danielle, I'll let you finish it up.

MCLAUGHLIN: You know it's simply not true Jeffrey, you do this over and over. You paint this modern Democratic Party with the sins of the past Democratic Party and it's simply not true. Hillary Clinton is running, she's talked very forcefully about issues that we still have in this country, about our own inherent biases. The problems that we have with systemic racism. There are so many ways this manifests itself in day to day. Everyone, African-Americans, everybody wants economic opportunity, wants access to higher education. And she's put forth actually plans other than sort of random ideas about how to make America great again.

BLACKWELL: All right, and hopefully, we'll get to some of those plans. I mean this was something that wasn't part of an interview. This was something that Tim Kaine introduced as Donald Trump as pushing their values. The Ku Klux Klan values. The David Duke values, as you say, Danielle, you suspect that this won't continue but we'll see. We've got about 70 days to go, I promise we're going to have the immigration discussion this morning.

Jeffery Lord, Danielle McLaughlin, thank you both.

LORD: Thank you, Victor.

MCLAUGHLIN: Thank you.

BLACKWELL: All right, Christi? PAUL: And still to come -- dozens of earthquake victims are being honored today and laid to rest, as Italy pauses for a national day of mourning.





PAUL: It is a national day of mourning in central Italy. This of course just days after a deadly earthquake hit a very popular vacation area there. I want to show you what's happening right now.


PAUL: Funerals under way for about 35 of the victims. Italy's Prime Minister and President are here at this service. The death toll now at 290. That is a new number this morning. Many more are unaccounted for as well. But the depth of devastation that we're seeing across this region maybe now is when it's really sinking in here because this critical window to find more survivors alive is just ticking by.

Hundreds of aftershocks, too, we should point out, are really hampering some ongoing recovery efforts there. And look at these pictures coming in from a makeshift camp there. 2100 people living in some of those tents right now.

CNN's Fred Pleitgen is on the phone with us from one of the most devastated towns. Actually, he's with us there as you can see some of the rubble behind him. Fred, as we talk about the fact that maybe some of this is finally sinking in with these people, help us to understand what they're going through today and what their most urgent need is.

FRED PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well right now, Christi, the most urgent need here is trying to find or trying to see if there are still some survivors. And certainly, there's a lot of rescue crews out here. There's some big assets out including dogs as well trying to still see whether there's people under the rubble. Unfortunately in most cases all they can retrieve is dead bodies. And I want to show you one of the reasons why.

This is one of the houses here, one of the big houses here in this town that came down during this earthquake. And finding anybody alive in something like that of course very difficult surviving that would really have to be a stroke of luck. And that's what many buildings in this town look like.

And you know you're also talking about the aftershocks here. And it really is probably the biggest risk to the rescue and recovery efforts that are going on here right here. I want to draw your attention to something. You see that ancient church tower over there made of stone. That has some major cracks in it already and the authorities here fear that could come down if there is another major aftershock. And we have had hundreds of aftershocks that have done exactly that. They've brought buildings that have had already had some damage down completely. Every time that happens the rescue crews need to stop their work, they need to evacuate the area immediately because of course, all of the other rubble there starts shifting as well. And they're in danger of getting buried themselves.

So it's very difficult work for the rescue crews. They're trying to move in more heavy assets and at the same time of course taking care of those who have been affected. And I can tell you from a place like Amatrice here, which is the worst affected town in this area, pretty much every family has had someone who was either killed or injured. And of course those people deeply traumatized and at the same time very much afraid of these very strong aftershocks that are happening as well, Christi.

PAUL: Well and we can imagine what it must be like for them, especially the 2100 people with are in these camps, these makeshift camps. Do you have any idea or are they giving you any indication as to where those people will go or how long they'll have to be living in those conditions?

PLEITGEN: Yes, you know that is -- it's actually a real big debate here in Italy right now as to how you move forward from something like this. Of course a lot of those people, a lot of those 2,000 people or more than 2,000 people have lost their homes. A lot of them at this point in time are afraid to stay in any sort of hardened structures because of the aftershocks that are going on.


PLEITGEN: But then in the long term the question is going to be with some of these villages are you going to rebuild them where they were before, where they are on a seismic fault line where you do have that activity, where you have these earthquakes that intermittently happen.

So the Italian authorities are saying maybe some of these villages have to be given up completely and they might have to relocate these people to other parts of the country. That's the long-term thinking. They're also saying they want to rebuild a lot of this but it really is a big discussion that's going on here right now.

Now this area of course has been called an emergency area and therefore funding is available to help the most immediate needs but for the long term there's some very big questions that Italian politicians, the Italian society is going to ask itself about what they're going to do with places like this one which are very ancient, very beautiful but unfortunately also very prone to seismic activity as well Christ.

PAUL: My goodness. All right, Fred Pleitgen, thank you so much for bringing us the latest from that area.


BLACKWELL: And for ways you can help earthquake victims visit (END VIDEO CLIP)

BLACKWELL: I'm sure you heard about this, brutal crime in Mississippi.


BLACKWELL: Well, authorities now say they have captured the man who killed two nuns in their home.



PAUL: Saturday morning at 7:29 and thank you for sharing your time with us. I'm Christi Paul.

BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. Always good to start a day with you.

Our top story this morning. Police in Mississippi arrest a man accused of stabbing two nuns to death in their home.


PAUL: Police say this man, here's his picture, Rodney Earl Sanders was behind the, "heinous" crime. They say he broke into the house in Lexington and killed them but authorities are still trying to decipher why this happened. .


PAUL: I want to show you Margaret Held and Paula Merrill. They worked as nurse practitioners, they were serving one of the state's poorest counties. Police made their gruesome discovery when the two didn't show up for work on Thursday. Now we know that there'll be a wake tomorrow held for both of the sisters and a memorial mass is scheduled for Monday


BLACKWELL: Donald Trump's personal doctor is explaining what he meant when he said that Trump would be, if elected the healthiest individual ever elected.


BLACKWELL: Dr. Harold Bornstein said that he wrote the letter saying that Trump was in excellent health in just five minutes while a limo driver there was waiting for him outside of his office. Here's more of what he said to NBC News.

DR. HAROLD BORNSTEIN, DONALD TRUMP'S DOCTOR: I thought about it all day and at the end I get rushed and I get anxious when I get rushed. So I tried to get the four to five lines down as fast as possible so that they would be happy with it. His health is excellent particularly his mental health. He's like the (inaudible) that will work out just fine. (END VIDEO CLIP)

BLACKWELL: All right, back again Donald Trump supporter Jeffrey Lord and Hillary Clinton supporter Danielle McLaughlin. Jeffrey, this doctor says that I get rushed, I get anxious so I try to just get out four or five lines as fast as possible that they would be happy with. Is that the way this process is supposed to work. And I know you have a Reagan story. I'm sure this is not the way it worked for him.

LORD: Yes, you know, none of these candidates are statutorily bound to put out their medical conditions and we to be perfectly candid we've had problems with Presidents who have been less than forthcoming about this. Franklin Roosevelt for one. Woodrow Wilson for another.

I just -- I don't know here - I mean this is always up to the candidate as to what they're going to release. And this is what's there so I really can't say beyond that. I don't know the doctor. What can I say.

BLACKWELL: But is this - I mean when this came out, it was heralded by Trump supporters that this - I mean he's in great shape. He's in great health. He hasn't had any shoulder or hips concerns. Go ahead.

LORD: Certainly mine - I know and certainly to my observation he is in great shape. I mean -

BLACKWELL: -- yes, but you're not a medical doctor. This guy is and took four or five minutes to write four or five lines that they would be happy with. How --

LORD: Well, anybody who's been - anybody who's been to a doctor, I mean, I certainly, like most people have been to a doctor. It doesn't take them long to write up a report on your physical condition here. It can take that long. But as to the contents and his credibility, I mean, I just -- I don't know.

BLACKWELL: All right, Danielle let me come to you. How much do you think we'll hear about this from the Clinton campaign?

MCLAUGHLIN: I honestly don't think that much. Honestly, when this first came out, it looked to me like Donald Trump wrote it. The hyperbole, the descriptors, the adjectives that were used I really -- did Donald Trump write this? I don't think it's a big deal. I think Clinton is going to focus more on the tax return issue which from a transparency perspective and from this idea of whether as Trump is elected President who he may be beholden to. I think that's far more important certainly to the campaign and I suspect the American people.

BLACKWELL: OK. That's enough of that. Let's turn to immigration. Jeffrey Lord, can you tell us, and we're putting this guy --

LORD: Let's go back to the doctor --

BLACKWELL: No, no, let's talk about immigration. Let's put aside for a moment, those who have committed additional crimes in the country who are here illegally, undocumented peoples in the country. The estimate, latest one is about 11 million. Could be more, could be less. Coming to you, can you articulate what Donald Trump's position is for those people in this country?

LORD: Sure. As I understand what he said to Anderson Cooper the other night, they don't all go back at once. You can't -- that's impossible to do. But that they, in general, the policy is they've got to go back, and then they can be allowed in if they stand in line and come in in normal fashion.

I mean Victor the larger point here about this is a very good one. You cannot have a country in which people are allowed to just walk in the door en masse and stay. I mean whether it's this country or any other country. And certainly, in reverse when poor Sergeant Tahmooressi made a wrong turn, they put him in the clink in Mexico and held him for months.

BLACKWELL: Understood. But if Donald Trump said that he's not going to now go forward with this deportation force as he said he would during the primary -

LORD: He said we'll see. He said we'll see. I mean -

BLACKWELL: But we'll see is not a plan.

LORD: Well, this has been done once in American history by President Eisenhower.

BLACKWELL: Understood.


LORD: And it was very popular in the day. It was very popular in the day "The New York Times" kept pushing it on there, going back and looked at their archives, the New York Times kept pushing this. Eisenhower was reelected in a landslide after he did this.

BLACKWELL: Again but popular doesn't always equal right or ethical. So with the popular argument can we set that aside. But let me -- let me ask you about if Donald Trump is not going to do this mass deportation, and he said we'll see that people have to leave on their own. Does not equal the self-deportation plan that he derided from 2012?

LORD: No, I don't think so. I mean, I think he will make a very serious attempt to get people to do exactly as he says. Beginning with criminals. I mean, when you see that the people, the killers of Jameel Shaw Jr., the African-American student in Los Angeles who was killed by an illegal. When you see the killer of Kate Steinle in San Francisco. I mean those guys should never have been in the country in the first place. They should be gone.

BLACKWELL: Danielle, to you, even you know the supporters who may not be happy with the changes in his immigration plan, the latest Quinnipiac poll shows that nearly two-thirds of Trump supporters are simply voting against Clinton. Do you expect that even this ambiguity will lose support? MCLAUGHLIN: Well, his whole campaign has been ambiguity and

equivocation. So I think his core voters will be with him regardless. I want to stick a little bit to the idea of the Eisenhower deportation. You know when we were incarcerating Japanese, when we had Japanese internment camps that seemed like a good idea at the time. But of course in hindsight that was really the wrong thing to do.

LORD: That was the Democratic policy.

MCLAUGHLIN: But getting back to immigration. You know there's a lot of talk out there that we you know we have "open borders" but that's simply not true. I think what Trump is proposing sounds very much like Rubio and Bush and you could almost argue he's saying what Obama has been trying to do which is prioritize criminals, people who have been deported multiple times and give some status, not legal status that would allow them even become a permanent resident or a citizen to people who either have children who are citizens or are citizens themselves to have noncitizen children. So he's sounding a lot Obama frankly.

BLACKWELL: All right, 10 seconds Jeffrey and we've got to go.

LORD: Yes, the rush Limbaugh solution might be advisable that they get to stay as long as they don't get to vote for 25 years.

BLACKWELL: All right, we'll wrap it there. Jeffrey Lord, Danielle McLaughlin again thank you.

LORD: Thanks.

PAUL: There's been this rash of heroin overdose that is sweeping the Midwest.


PAUL: And police believe, and this is probably one of the most shocking elements of this, that the drug was tainted with elephant tranquilizer. We're going to take a deeper look into all of this next.




PAUL: Well police say an alarming spike in heroin overdoses recently maybe linked to a batch of the drug that's laced with elephant tranquilizer. Rachel Crane takes a look at this problem.


LAURIE ERION, APRIL'S MOTHER: It's terrifying. It terrifies me.

RACHEL CRANE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A recent spike in heroin overdoses. Nearly 100 in the last week alone have Laurie Erion fearing for her daughter's life. APRIL ERION, HEROIN ADDICT: I would love to get high. I would, you

know I'm a drug addict, that's what I do best.

CRANE: April is 22 years old and she's been using heroin for the last six years. In those years, she said she's lost about a dozen friends.

ERION: Overdose. I just had one of my friend's die I think yesterday morning and she left four kids behind.

CRANE: Officials suspect a batch of heroin laced with elephant tranquilizers is to blame for the latest string of overdoses. But April says that's not enough to scare away regular users.

When you are addicted to heroin, when you're using, you don't care about dying. You're just chasing the next high. And for a lot of people, hearing that there is a souped-up strain of dope on the streets, that's actually appealing?

ERION: Yes, definitely. Absolutely. Because you -- you stop getting high. That's why they call it chasing. Because you stop getting high. You're just - you're staying not sick. So when you here that somebody has overdosed or you hear about these crazy new drugs, you know, you're thinking, like well, all right. It's about time. I'm trying to get high. I mean that's all you've been trying to do.

CRANE: So that means with this new strain of heroin that's cut with an elephant tranquilizer.

ERION: I am very sure that there are heroin addicts who are actively looking for it. And thinking that the people that are dying are doing it wrong. They're doing too much. They're not -- you know what I mean they're just thinking that they're going to find a way to get really high and not die. Or if they die, they don't really care. But they're definitely looking for it. I would be.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My friend's on drugs. I think he's overdosing - I think he's overdosed.

911 OPERATOR: Is he awake?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No he's awake but barely.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's breathing.

911 OPERATOR: OK. What's he OD'ing on?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Heroin. I guess it's laced with --

CRANE: This firehouse in Cincinnati responded to nearly two dozen overdoses in a single day last week. More than ten times their daily average. And they don't know when the calls will stop coming in. But April's mom is worried about a different type of call.

LAURIE ERION: You know, we hear an ambulance, and we always wonder if it's someone that we know or for our child. And that's something that we live with every day. You know, we go to bed at night, wondering if we're going to get that phone call.

CRANE: April and her mom know better than anyone how difficult the struggle with opioid addiction is.

ERION: I'll do any drug you put in front of me. So, it's definitely a struggle. It's really hard.

LAURIE ERION: It's difficult because we can't like love them out of it. You know, so, we love them so much, and it doesn't -- there's nothing that we can really do for them.

CRANE: April says getting sober is a daily struggle. But in her eyes, not using heroin is progress. Even if other drugs are taking its place.

ERION: I'm definitely not -- I wouldn't say I'm using. But I've used twice since I've been out and I've been out for a month.

CRANE: How has heroin changed your life?


ERION: Well, I'm 22. I just did 11 months incarcerated. I'm back on probation with more time on the shelf. When in reality, I mean I probably should have been applying for med school this summer. You know, that was what I wanted to do. That's where I should have been.

CRANE: Rachel Crane, CNN, Cincinnati.


BLACKWELL: And we'll look deeper into that health crisis there in Cincinnati a little later this morning.

Old domestic violence charges coming to life for Donald Trump's new campaign CEO.


BLACKWELL: What the campaign is saying about Steve Bannon and his future.



BLACKWELL: Donald Trump's newly appointed campaign CEO facing controversy this weekend. An old domestic charge against Steve Bannon has surfaced.


BLACKWELL: It was 1996 and the police report details an alleged altercation between Bannon and his then wife who say he abused her physically. Well details now from Chris Frates. CHRIS FRATES, CNN INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: Hey, good morning

Victor and Christi, Donald Trump's advisors always seem to invite a little controversy. And this time it's Trump's new campaign chief who's in the headlines.

Trump's new campaign chief Steve Bannon is already drawing Democratic fire.

CLINTON: The latest shakeup was designed to "let Trump be Trump." So do that he hired Stephen Bannon, the head of a right wing website called as the campaign CEO.


FRATES: But now the conservative news chief is drawing headlines of his own. Bannon was charged with battery and domestic violence stemming from a 1996 incident involving his then wife.

According to documents obtained by CNN an argument over money allegedly got physical after Bannon's then wife told him she wanted a divorce. The responding police officer wrote "she appeared as if she was very upset and had been crying. I saw that her eyes were red and watery. She first said Oh, thank you, you are here."

The police report went on to say that Bannon grabbed her by the neck and wrist pulling her down and leaving red marks where he grabbed her. The report said she fought back, got away from Bannon and dialed 911.

Neither the Trump campaign nor a Bannon spokeswoman returned requests for comment. Bannon joins a line of some in Trump's inner circle who have drawn controversy. Former campaign chairman Paul Mannafort lobbying ties to Ukraine and Russia and former campaign manager Corey Lewandowsky's rough treatment of a female Briebart reporter drew unwanted scrutiny.

And defending Trump from a decade old rape accusation that Ivana Trump later walked back, Trump attorney Michael Cohen argued "of course understand that by the very definition you can't rape your spouse."

Trump friend and unofficial advisor, Roger Ailes left Fox News, the channel he founded following allegations of sexual harassment.


FRATES: Now I asked Trump's campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway if this incident will affect Bannon's future with the campaign, she gave me a pretty definitive one word answer, no. And that was it. Not in an interview Conway was asked if Trump knew about the domestic violence case against Bannon and she "I don't know what he was aware of with respect to a 20 year old claim where the charges were dropped" so it doesn't sound like Bannon's going anywhere anytime soon.

Victor, Christi?

BLACKWELL: All right, Chris Frates there in Washington for us. Thank you so much. PAUL: OK, so it's that time of the year, hitting the gridiron for some

college football. Two U.S. teams are doing it not in the U.S. right now.

BLACKWELL: We've got all the details after the break.



BLACKWELL: College football season officially underway.

PAUL: Yes but it's starting half a world away. Rashan Ali has (inaudible) report.

RASHAN ALI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey this is my favorite time of the year. College football. Well the game of American football is going global. Last night the season started down under in Australia.


The California Golden Bears took on the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors at Sydney's Olympic Stadium. The teams gave fans plenty of entertainment. Cal quarterback Davis Webb threw four touchdown passes and ran for another score in his debut. He has some big shoes to fill replacing Jared Goff the number one overall NFL draft pick. Cal wins the shootout 51-31.

And Tom Brady has made his return to the football field at least for game three of preseason debut against the Carolina Panthers after sitting out of the base for his first two pre-season games. Brady came in off the bench and immediately connected with Erin Jobson to set up a field goal. Second quarter, Brady lands a beauty. This time to Chris Hogan for the touchdown.

New England is undefeated in the preseason after a 19-17 win. Remember, though, Brady is suspended for the first four games of the regular season as punishment for deflate gate.

And finally, Olympic gymnast and Massachusetts native Aly Raisman threw out the first pitch at Fenway Park last flight. There was one problem, what to do with all the Olympic medals. Well David Ortiz was there to lend a hand or a neck in this case. Big Papi not only held her bling he also caught her ceremonial first pitch. Check out her stars and stripes shoes and socks combo. Such a cutie pie. Love her so much.


PAUL: Nice, oh my gosh yes. That is awesome. They were so heavy.

BLACKWELL: So, so heavy.

PAUL: He was just kind of -- Rashan, thank you.

ALI: My pleasure. PAUL: We'll see her in just a little bit again as well.

BLACKWELL: Well, when it comes to recent presidential pitches, sometimes the biggest show is the one happening right behind the podium. That group there behind the candidates.

Nobody could explain this better than CNN's Jeanne Moos.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: What happens behind Donald Trump doesn't stay behind Donald Trump.

TRUMP: Hillary Clinton is a bigot.

MOOS: It goes viral. The latest Trump supporter to react with shock to the Donald's words was pounced on by a critic who wrote "we are all this woman's face."

Just over two weeks earlier it was Daryl Vickers jaw that dropped.

TRUMP: Although the Second Amendment people maybe there is, I don't know, but -

MOOS: When the Donald riffed on how gun supporters might stop Hillary.

DARYL VICKERS: I can't believe he said it. It was a joke.

MOOS: Daryl says he's still voting for Trump.

TRUMP: We can't play games.

MOOS: We've seen one guy feed another chips behind the Donald. And who could pay attention to Hillary when a guy covered with stickers chewed over her speech.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I mean what are the different nicknames you've had?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've gotten sticker boy, sticker man, idiot.

MOOS: At a Trump rally in Texas, we watched a hyped up supporter display his Trump shirt, wag a finger, give thumbs-up, thumbs-down signal to cut off immigration, pray when prayer was mentioned and even climb -

TRUMP: To restore the ladder of success.

MOOS: His own invisible ladder.

But sometimes it's hard to tell genuine supporters from pranksters who manage to sneak in to clown for the cameras. Pranksters like the guys who got behind Clinton.

CLINTON: So, so incredibly grateful.

MOOS: Wearing settle for Hillary shirts. At a Trump rally, the same pair showed up wearing arm bands.

The Donald may say --

TRUMP: Hillary Clinton is a bigot.

MOOS: But Trump is a spigot of startling statements. This woman's face was more mobile than her hands which only managed a feeble two claps. And when he's not provoking funny faces, Trump is no slouch at making his own.

Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.



KAINE: And he has supporters like David Duke connected with the Ku Klux Klan.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you want white supremacists to vote for you?

TRUMP: No, I don't at all.

KAINE: Ku Klux Klan values, David Duke values, Donald Trump values are not American values.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Whoever committed this brutal act I pray for that person.

BLACKWELL: Rodney Earl Sanders charged with two counts of murder in connection with the death of two nuns.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They lived their lives to try to make the world better for the people who have nothing.