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CNN NEWSROOM

Putin Speaks With World Leaders Amid Strained Ties; Kimmel Makes Emotional Plea On Health Care Coverage; Le Pen Accused Of Plagiarizing Defeated Rival; U.K. Leaders Campaign For Coming Snap Election; Hillary Clinton Blames Loss on Herself, Comey and Russia; Trump Relying on China to Pressure North Korea; Hamas Announces Major Policy Changes; Ivanka Trump Releases New Book. Aired 1-2a ET

Aired May 3, 2017 - 01:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[01:00:08] JOHN VAUSE, CNN NEWSROOM ANCHOR: Still watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. Ahead this hour, after meeting with Germany's Angela Merkel, Vladimir Putin talked by phone with the U.S. President Donald Trump. Next, he host Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Russia's growing diplomat role in the world's most serious conflicts.

Also ahead, awkward photo ops and some salty language, the U.K.'s election campaign now officially underway.

And later, how to succeed in business even without a famous last name. Ivanka Trump offers life advice for the little people.

Hello, everybody, thank you for being with us. I'm John Vause. This is NEWSROOM L.A.

Russia's President is playing global diplomat right now, meeting with Germany's chancellor, talking by phone with U.S. President, and of course, there was a meeting in Russia with Turkish leader on Wednesday. Brian Todd has more on how Mr. Putin is trying to steer the conversations.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: For Vladimir Putin, the backdrop is ideal. Sochi, the Black Sea resort where Russia hosted the 2014 Winter Olympics. With German Chancellor Angela Merkel at his side, Putin dismissed allegations that his hacking teams interfered in the American election.

VLADIMIR PUTIN, RUSSIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): We would never interfere in the political process of other countries. You dwelled upon the example of the U.S. which hasn't been confirmed by anything or anyone, it's just rumors utilized by the American media industry.

TODD: A senior Trump administration official tells CNN that's false, saying there was evidence of Russian meddling in the election. Analysts say don't expect Putin's hackers to stop now.

BEN JUDAH, "FRAGILE EMPIRE" AUTHOR: First people talk about it, and it makes Russia seem more powerful than it is, and secondly, because it does appear to be shifting the conversation online and Russian propaganda does appear to be able to sway the online discussions, support to a certain degree, populist and extremist candidates who are better suited for working with the Kremlin.

TODD: Putin's denial of interference comes on the same day of his phone call with President Trump. It's the first call between the two leaders since the U.S. launched a missile strike in Syria, an operation which sparked real tension between Putin and Trump. The strike prompted by intelligence that the Syrian regime killed its own citizens with chemical weapons. A consensus that Putin still seems to refuse to accept.

PUTIN (through translator): Those guilty must be found and punished but this can only be done after an impartial investigation.

JAMES GOLDGEIER, AMERICAN UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF INTERNATIONAL SERVICE DEAN: You know, he's just trying to wrap a little smokescreen around this. He's not interested at all in some kind of resolution to the situation, some kind of real understanding of what occurred.

TODD: The U.S. Intelligence Community is confidence the Syrian regime conducted the chemical attack and that Russia played a role in trying to "distract the international community". As Putin faces more scrutiny abroad, an extraordinary scene at home. People on the streets risking their lives in a show of defiance. One protest in Moscow had a title, "we're sick of it." Despite the unrest, analysts say don't expect much change when Putin runs for re-election next year.

GOLDGEIER: He controls enough of the levers of power and controls the media enough and has sufficient support outside the major cities that he should be able to manage this election campaign.

TODD: Even if Putin wins by a large margin next year, his popularity could decline after that. If the economy doesn't improve and the Russian standard of living continues to stagnate, then experts say, "expect Vladimir Putin to pull one of his signature moves, deflecting attention from his problems at home by telling Russians that America is out to get them. Brian Todd, CNN Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VAUSE: Well, joining me here in Los Angeles, Ron Brownstein, CNN's Senior Political Analyst and the senior editor for the Atlantic. Ron, thank you for being here.

RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes.

VAUSE: It's all - if you look at the readout from that phone conversation between Trump and Putin, the Kremlin mentions that there will be this face to face between these two leaders in July but that detail was admitted by the White House.

BROWNSTEIN: And conversely, the White House talked about safe zones in Syria, and the Russians, apparently, they don't have that in their readout. So exactly, we know what's happening. This is a - this is a fraught relationship. I mean, President Trump thought that he could reset the relationship as President Obama did, perhaps in a very way but he has been hand strung both by the shadow of the Russian involvement in the 2016 election and also by the underlying reality of the divergents and our goals. I mean, I think the core thing that President Trump was hoping that he could work with President Putin on was working against ISIS in Syria, but in fact, the top priority for Russia in Syria is fortifying the Assad government. And that collision of interests makes the initial expectation looked somewhat naive, six months in.

[01:05:15] VAUSE: So, is this essentially a political decision to leave these details out by the White House and by the Kremlin?

BROWNSTEIN: I don't know, I can't answer that. I mean, I think, you know, we've had - you know, we've had many, you know, many moments where people are not exactly sure what the house is -

(CROSSTALK)

VAUSE: Because we've seen this before like when they - Xi Jinping spoke with Donald Trump. Those are huge readouts.

BROWNSTEIN: Right. Or Australia. You know, the Australian --

(CROSSTALK)

VAUSE: It was a good conversation.

BROWNSTEIN: You know, you're right. Right, it was a good conversation or maybe not so good.

VAUSE: Exactly. OK. We've also seemed a little odd right now just days after securing a deal to avoid a government shutdown. The U.S. President are now saying, that might actually be a good thing. He tweeted, "The reason for the plan negotiated between the republicans and democrats, and this is a plan to fund the government, is that we need 60 votes in the Senate which are not there. We either elect more republican senators in 2018 or change the rules now to 51 percent. Our country needs a good shutdown in September to fix the mess." I noticed the quotation marks around -

BROWNSTEIN: There are so many things in there worth coming. First, when he's talking about the international audience with 51 is ending the filibuster in the senate, so the senate, you know, you can - you -- if the minority party, "filibusters", they can require 60 votes to pass any legislation. We have sequentially eliminated the filibuster for Presidential appointments, now even Supreme Court justice.

The President is talking about removing it for legislation. Republicans bridled against that because the history of the senate is that if you're the majority one day, you might be in the minority (INAUDIBLE) in fact, neither party has held those senate for more than eight consecutive years since 1980 which is the longest such stretch in American history, so they're kind of sensitive to this issue. The other point is that he's talking about maybe shutting down the government not over the spending through the current year, which ends at the end of September, but over his attempt to try to get more control of the budget process for next year, I guess, fiscal 2018.

It's worth noting that when we had government shutdowns in the U.S. before is because of divided government. It's because a democratic president, in the case of President Obama or President Clinton were conflicting with a republican congress over fiscal priorities. The idea that you would shut it down while republicans had unified control, like ending the filibuster is not an idea that found a lot of media support among republicans on Capitol Hill.

VAUSE: Yes, I know that Donald Trump ran as a republican (INAUDIBLE) but he kind of also ran as an independent as well in many ways, too. Which is why I think he's having so much trouble with Congress right now (INAUDIBLE)

BROWNSTEIN: Yes, there is no Donald Trump caucus in the congress. I mean, you know, he ran -- the health care bill is a very good example of this. Because, you know, republicans obviously are struggling enormously to get the health care bill through the house. They may get there in the end but it was a do this, a huge (INAUDIBLE) in the senate. What's really striking to me is if you look at the members in the house, the republicans have come out against it.

Donald Trump carried almost all of their districts. It's not who you would expect. I mean, our first thought would have been, OK, well, it's a lot of people and districts that Hillary Clinton won who are worried about kind of swing voters moving away from - these are core republican districts but what they've been hung up on is the fear that the bill would hurt older and lower income voters who are increasingly their own voters in these places, older whites.

And so, like, even on -- even in districts that he carried, the leverage hasn't been there. And similarly, you said it quickly, that with the White House hope going in was that there are 10 democratic senators up in 2018 in states that voted for Trump in 2016. He thought that was going to be his leverage in the senate. They have felt no compunction about breaking from him and that's part of the price you pay for the lowest approval rating ever in 100 days.

VAUSE: Yes. And you mentioned healthcare, and of course, this is a big topic here on late night television, Jimmy Kimmel who shared this very emotional story about his new-born son had a heart condition, need emergency surgery. It was a - he went on television, he spoke about - he also pleaded for affordable care. Listen to this.

BROWNSTEIN: Yes.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JIMMY KIMMEL, ABC JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE HOST: Before 2014, if you were born with congenital heart disease like my son was, there's a good chance you'd never be able to get health insurance because you had a pre-existing condition. You were born with a pre-existing condition and if your parents didn't have medical insurance, you might not live long enough to even get denied because of pre-existing condition. If your baby is going to die and it doesn't have to, it shouldn't matter how much money you make. I think that's something now whether you're a republican or a democrat or something else, we all agree on that, right?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: It was emotional, but also, we heard from former President Obama, he tweeted out, "Well said, Jimmy. That's exactly why we fought so hard for the ACA, and why we need to protect it for kids like Billy, and congratulations."

You know, this was actually nuance by Kimmel because if you look at Trumpcare, it does not really cover pre-existing conditions which is one of the most popular parts of Obamacare and I suspect one of the reason why they're having so much trouble coming up with a replacement.

BROWNSTEIN: Yes, and they had to move it to the right. I mean, after they failed initially in the house, they moved the bill to the right to try to bring in more of the conservatives by allowing states to opt out of the national requirement to cover all people with pre-existing condition at comparable prices. The bill would allow states to basically give insurance waivers to charge more for people with pre- existing conditions which is going to effectively cut them out of coverage.

Look, I think what we are seeing here is gravity reasserting itself, facts on the ground, reasserting itself. I think many people thought that once you got to 15 or 20 million people gaining coverage under the Affordable Care Act, it would be very different to repeal. That didn't seem to be playing out for most of the (INAUDIBLE) but republicans were voting with impunity to undo it. Now, though, that the rubber is meeting the road, you are seeing the practical difficulty of taking away insurance that was extended as Jimmy Kimmel talked about and other protections to 20 million plus Americans, not all of whom were democrats, and that is the poor problem republicans faced. Many of their constituents, particularly these interior blue- collar states are among those who have benefitted from the law and provisions like this and a party that depends on elder whites. Those voters with the ones -- tend to be the ones with pre-existing conditions.

VAUSE: Was it the republican Speaker Paul Ryan said it is easy to repeal Obamacare when there is no responsibility when you know that it's actually going to be vetoed or blocked in the senate, and that is never going to get anywhere.

BROWNSTEIN: Yes.

VAUSE: That part is easy. We also heard once again from Hillary Clinton. She was at a women's forum and she was asked about, you know, losing the unlosable election, essentially, who's to blame?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you take any personal responsibility? HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Oh, of course, I take absolute personal responsibility. I was the candidate, I was the person who was on the ballot, but I was on the way to winning until the combination of Jim Comey's letter on October 28th and Russian WikiLeaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me but got scared off.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: And look, obviously she said that she takes personal responsibility for losing the election but it sounds like she's not taking personal responsibility she (INAUDIBLE) the election.

BROWNSTEIN: Yes, I know. Look, she has a legitimate grievance. There was genuine movement in the election after the Comey letter particularly among college educated white voters (INAUDIBLE) college educated white men, but the fact that it was close enough for the letter and anything else including the Russian hacking, the ticket is itself revealing because she was running against a candidate Donald Trump, and 60 percent of the country consistently in polling, even in the exit poll on election day said they did not believe he was qualified to be president, yet there were so many doubts about whether she could bring the change that people wanted and doubts about her honesty as well that he was still in the game. So, yes, it may be entirely true that the Comey letter tipped the result but that isn't the whole story. The fact that it was close enough that it could be tipped by that is also extremely revealing.

VAUSE: Yes, if you've read the book "Shattered", there's a lot of allegations of a terrible campaign, a lot of infighting which was really badly run by Hillary Clinton, which is odd given how long she has been in politics.

BROWNSTEIN: Yes. Look, I mean, when you lose, you always look bad. But the fact is they did make tactical mistakes and I think bigger than anything like that, she chose to set up a private e-mail server and engaged in other activities that reinforced the doubts that people had about her.

VAUSE: But clearly, Donald Trump is up late watching cable news because after Hillary Clinton has been talking, he tweeted a short time ago. "FBI Director Comey was the best thing that ever happened to Hillary Clinton, and then he gave her a free pass from many bad deeds. The phoney Trump-Russia story was an excuse used by the democrats as justification for losing the election. Perhaps Trump just ran a great campaign." How long does he hang onto this sort of this (INAUDIBLE) resentment over the election?

BROWNSTEIN: First of all, wouldn't it be healthier for the country if, like, President Obama, he spent his late nights watching sports center? I mean, that might be that -

(CROSSTALK)

VAUSE: Eating seven (INAUDIBLE) BROWNSTEIN: That's right, something like eating seven (INAUDIBLE) but

look, that is his own FBI Director who he is, in effect, throwing under the bus here. I mean, we have seen a - you know, this administration has had lots of strange moments and lots of unprecedented developments, some of which his supporters like and which horrified many other voters but the past week has been at the high end of kind of unconventional and difficult to explain behavior from reopening - relitigating the civil war. And Andrew Jackson to criticizing your own sitting FBI Director and in effect accusing him of covering up and sheltering your political opponent.

You know, his - as I've said, his approval rating is lower than any president after 100 days. Part of that is elements of the agenda are very controversial with the biggest part of it, are these - those voters who are conflicted and ambivalent, who weren't sure that Donald Trump had the qualifications, the temperament, the judgement to be president. He is doing a lot more to reinforce than dissolve their doubts.

VAUSE: That does seem to be a bit of frenzy of, you know, weird or unusual activity.

[01:15:00] BROWNSTEIN: Real manic, kind of weak. Yes.

VAUSE: Yes. Absolutely. Ron, thanks so much.

BROWNSTEIN: Thanks, John.

VAUSE: Well, a short break. When we come back, Britain's election campaign just getting started. Already the (INAUDIBLE) competition under pressure while the ruling conservatives are facing questions if they've grasped the true cost of leaving the E.U.

Also, Marine Le Pen accused of plagiarizing her former rival's speech just days before France's Presidential Election. Why her team says it was all actually done on purpose.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

DON RIDDELL, CNN WORLD SPORT ANCHOR: Hey, I'm Don Riddell with your CNN WORLD SPORT headlines. Only one place to start today, that's the Champions League semi-finals, where Real Madrid have beaten their crosstown rivals, Atletico. In the last three seasons, Real have knocked them out every time. Twice that heartbreak has come in the final. The same narrative continued today with a completely dominant performance at the Bernabeu Stadium. Real Madrid bought the game, cruising to a 3-0 win and all three roles came from Madrid's superstar Cristiano Ronaldo. Madrid have won two of the last three titles and it is very hard to see how they won't be in the final again this year.

Now, when Petra Kvitova was attacked at home back in December, it could have been the end of her tennis career. The two-time Wimbledon champion was stabbed in her left hand suffering nerve and tendon damage, so what a beautiful sight this is. Petra has just posted this on her Instagram page, saying she's back on court and hitting tennis balls. No certain return date yet but this is certainly really good to see.

And finally, it's the Kentucky derby at Churchill Downs this weekend, and you might want to think about backing a long shot who is also a real feel good story. He's called "Patch" and he's a one-eyed horse. His left eye was removed when he was a two-year-old because it had become swollen. He's a 40:1 outsider in Saturday's annual race.

And that is a quick look at your sports headlines. I'm Don Riddell.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

VAUSE: Welcome back. French Presidential Candidate Marine Le Pen is accused of plagiarizing a speech by her former rival Francois Fillon. Here they are side by side.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[01:20:01] VAUSE: But the far-right leader says, she meant to do it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARINE LE PEN, FRENCH PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE OF THE NATIONAL FRONT (through translator): I was completely aware because these are passages written by someone who was my speechwriter in 2012, who then became Fillon's speechwriter afterwards. The idea was to give a nod.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Recent polls show centrist Emmanuel Macron holding a steady lead over Le Pen. They'll face each other Wednesday at their final televised debate before Sunday's election.

Britain also gearing up an election of its own, as Prime Minister Theresa May tries to show up support for her Brexit agenda. But with five weeks less than until the vote, opposition leaders are campaigning for their own vision of those negotiations. Here's Nic Robertson.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hello, how are you?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: The battle for votes well underway. Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn fighting to boosts his flagging support. Targeting the government on health care, education, the economy.

JEREMY CORBYN, UNITED KINGDOM LABOUR PARTY LEADER: They're a government that is very strong against the weakest, and very weak against the strongest, the wealthiest and the richest. That is the difference between them and us.

ROBERTSON: The British Prime Minister Theresa May campaigning on their party's successful 2015 election slogan. THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Vote for me in the local conservative candidate, the strong and stable leadership.

ROBERTSON: Strong and stable, a mantra we'll hear plenty of.

MAY: Every vote for me is a vote for strong and stable leadership.

ROBERTSON: May wants to make the election a binary choice, her or Corbyn, the pitch only she can get the country out Europe successfully.

MAY: Every vote for him is a vote for a chaotic Brexit. Every vote for me is a vote to strengthen our hand in negotiating the best deal for Brexit.

ROBERTSON: In truth, other options than Corbyn are on the table. Liberal democrats for a gentler Brexit, the Scottish National Party pushing for Scottish independence weaken many. But between the P.M. and the main opposition, the battle lines are clear.

CORBYN: This is speak of the election on the 8th of June is a choice between a -- yes -- between a conservative government for the few, and a labor government that will stand up for all of our people?

ROBERTSON: Not everyone is taken kindly to that idea.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is again, without really a good chance of a - of a significant difference I think isn't helpful.

ROBERTSON: Without a doubt, the election is another big asks at the British people. The British referendum last year and general election two years ago. For May's election gamble to pay off with a bigger majority, she needs as many people as possible to go out and vote. This election still a long way from the slam dunk May hopes it will be. Nic Robertson, CNN London.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VAUSE: Tom Nuttall, the Brussels' Bureau Chief and economist. He joins me now from the Belgian capital. Tom, good to see you. Prime Minister Theresa May of the Conservative Party doing quite well now ahead of this election. I guess the polls have climbed a little bit but it's now (INAUDIBLE) maybe Theresa May and the other conservatives haven't quite grasp just the true difficulties of what Brexit will mean, how difficult this divorce from the E.U., why she end up being and how much it could actually cost? Could that have an impact on the polls and could have an impact even after the election?

TOM NUTTALL, BRUSSELS BUREAU CHIEF AND ECONOMIST: Well, you're referring to a report that emerged from a dinner that Mrs. May held in 10 Downing Street last week with Jean-Claude Juncker, who's the President of the European Commission, the executive arm of the E.U. base here in Brussels. That did it while the accounts went to polling it badly and (INAUDIBLE) emerged is a lot more skeptical than the Brexit talks which will begin after the election are going to go well than he had beforehand. There has to be impact on the election, there's been sort of a minor war of words which is a merge between the two sides since then. Yesterday, Mrs. May said that she is going to be a bloody difficult woman during these talks. I think the impact on the election will probably be minimal. If anything, it will help her because she can portray herself in contrast of Jeremy Corbyn as the only person who's capable of standing up to those bureaucrats in the Brexit talks to come.

VAUSE: Well, you mentioned Theresa May, describing herself as a bloody difficult woman. Let's listen to Theresa May now and that comment.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAY: I think what we've seen recently is that at times, these negotiations are going to be tough. Now, during the Conservative Party leadership campaign, I was described by one of my colleagues as a bloody difficult woman. And I said at the end, the next person to find that out will be Jean-Claude Juncker.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Are these comments just helpful right now? Not considering negotiations haven't even started or is this just all part of British politics at the moment?

NUTTALL: When it comes to the (INAUDIBLE) with the E.U. I think this side, the Brussels side, E.U. 27 sides understands that in the (INAUDIBLE) of election campaign, a lot of things he can (INAUDIBLE) said that he just campaigned, may not mean that much. I think casually, they're more worried about what they heard in Private as this dinner last week.

As you said, they emerged with the - with the sense that Britain with Mrs. May in particular didn't necessarily understand some of the complexity, some of the difficulties that could have been involved in this negotiation. And just this morning, there's a new report in the financial times that calculates the so-called Brexit bill the financial settlements that Britain will face leaving the E.U. will be a lot higher than previous estimates. It could run as high as 100 billion euro. That is going to play heavily into the campaigning today.

VAUSE: Because the (INAUDIBLE) should essentially retain that the Brexit -- this will be a cheap and quick divorce, and that's the message they put out there. It'd be cheap, quick and easy if you have, you know, other - you have information coming out that that may not be the case. And clearly, you know, where does this leave Theresa May?

NUTTALL: I think the question of money at the Brexit talk, she's going to be one of the first thing that they talked about when that kicks off next month. It basically guaranteed to be an almighty (INAUDIBLE) it always is when E.U. talks about money which is not what (INAUDIBLE) left the E.U. and this action before. There's no precedence talk about it. There are no rules. It's just going to be a pounding on the table, difficult negotiations. That's going to be one big problem.

The second big problem and I think they're even more concerned about this on this side of the English Channel. It is -- the question of Citizens rights. That's what you do about three million E.U. citizens in Britain, also the 1 million British citizens in the rest of the E.U. I guarantee you they're rights off to Brexit, and one other things that emerged at this dinner from (INAUDIBLE) was that Mrs. May have absolutely no idea of the complexities sorting this issue out. That's going to be very difficult as well.

VAUSE: You know, Ed Miliband, former Labour Leader had his bacon sandwich moment. We also have now Theresa May having her issues with eating chips. She was at a campaign stop by the seaside with (INAUDIBLE) chips. She looked like she have never seen one before in her entire life. You know, how - you know, how awkward is this moment? You know, how - what does she have to do now to move beyond this?

NUTTALL: Well, I think she can probably survive chip dates. I don't think that's going to be a disaster. I hope it's going to be a disaster for her. The problem with Theresa May is this, she does have a real difficulty in presenting herself as a normal human being. I think you'll correspond it during his report, mentioned her mantra, strong and stable leadership. Now, every political leader has a mantra to get into an election campaign but Theresa May has really taken the repeated (INAUDIBLE) of this phrase in new heights of (INAUDIBLE) I think she has really had a difficulty in sort of the warmth of human, the personal touch, something that some of her predecessors including, David Cameron, whatever else you might thought of him was rather good at. So if anything, that's going to be a hindrance. On the other hand, her opponent, Jeremy Corbyn, performs absolutely appallingly in polls of his personal competence and (INAUDIBLE) so she's been rather lucky in that respect.

VAUSE: Yes, of course, Theresa May is now famous for this being very disciplined and staying on message throughout this campaign. Chip (INAUDIBLE) notwithstanding. Tom, good to speak with you. Thank you so much for being with us.

NUTTALL: A pleasure.

VAUSE: Next here on NEWSROOM L.A., if the election had just been a few days earlier, Hillary Clinton says, she'd be President now. She's spreading the blame of her loss to Donald Trump vote.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[01:32:29] VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. I'm John Vause with the headlines.

An Afghan official says at least eight people have been killed in a suicide attack near the U.S. embassy in Kabul. Fifteen others were wounded. No word yet on who's responsible.

British lawmakers, though, officially in campaign mode. Parliament is officially dissolved ahead of June's snap election. Prime Minister Theresa May called the vote seeking a stronger mandate for Brexit talks. Early polls indicate she will win.

Russia's president seems to be at the center of global diplomacy right now, holding talks with world leaders. He discussed Syria and Ukraine with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday. Later spoke with the U.S. president by phone for the first time since the U.S. strike on a Syrian airbase. And in the coming hours Mr. Putin meets with Turkey's president.

Hillary Clinton is speaking candidly about her election defeat and President Trump during an interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour. The former U.S. presidential nominee did not hold back in assigning blame.

Brianna Keilar has more.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Hillary Clinton today taking more responsibility for her election loss than she ever has before.

HILLARY CLINTON (D), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I take absolute personal responsibility. I was the candidate. I was the person who was on the ballot. I can't be anything other than who I am. And I spent decades learning about what it would take to move our country forward.

KEILAR: Clinton promised more in a book she is publishing in the fall.

CLINTON: I am writing a book and it's a painful process, reliving the campaign. So did we make mistakes? Of course we did. Did I make mistakes? Oh, my gosh, yes, you know, you'll read my confession and my --

(LAUGHTER)

CLINTON: My request for absolution. But the reason why I belief we lost were the intervening events of the last 10 days.

KEILAR: That would be the FBI director's decision to send a letter to Congress, stating he was reexamining the investigation into Clinton's use of a private e-mail and server while secretary of State. Director Jim Comey's letter went out October 28th.

CLINTON: If the election had been on October 27th, I'd be your president, and it wasn't.

KEILAR: And she blamed Russia for its role in hacking into the e-mail account of her campaign chairman, refusing to speak Russian President Vladimir Putin's name.

CLINTON: He certainly interfered in our election and it was clear he interfered to hurt me and to help my opponent.

[01:35:03] And if you chart my opponent and his campaign's statements, they quite coordinated with the goals that that leader who shall remain nameless had.

KEILAR: Nearly six months since the end of the campaign, Clinton is emerging as a leading antagonist to President Trump.

CLINTON: I'm now back to being an activist citizen and part of the resistance.

(APPLAUSE)

KEILAR: Clinton criticized the president's recent strike on a Syrian airbase used by both Syrian and Russian forces.

CLINTON: We later learned that the Russians and the Syrians moved jets off the runway, that the Russians may have been given a head's up even before our own Congress was.

KEILAR: And while she didn't denounce Trump for saying he would sit down with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, she did question the president's larger foreign policy goal.

CLINTON: Negotiations are critical, but they have to be part of a broader strategy, not just thrown off on a tweet some morning that hey, let's get together and, you know, see if we can get along.

KEILAR: At times she downright trolled Trump.

CLINTON: And remember, I did win more than three million votes than my opponent.

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I feel a tweet coming.

CLINTON: Well, I -- fine. You know, better that than interfering in foreign affairs. If he wants to tweet about me, I'm happy to be the -- a diversion.

KEILAR: Brianna Keilar, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VAUSE: Well, one of the biggest foreign policy challenges right now is North Korea, so with that let's go to CNN's Paula Hancocks in Seoul. Matt Rivers is standing by in Beijing.

And Paula, to Hillary Clinton's point in that half an hour long interview with Christiane about building some kind of regional coalition to deal with these challenges. We know that Donald Trump spoke in the last couple of hours with Russia's president. They talked about North Korea. Also we know they've been pressing Beijing as well as other countries. Is this the start of Donald Trump following Clinton's advice in a way and building that regional strategy, at least Trump style?

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Potentially. I mean, it could be that. I mean, you've certainly seen, John, in recent weeks that has been a huge push towards Northeast Asia. You've had the vice president. The secretary of State, the Defense secretary, coming to this region and visiting South Korea and Japan and sometimes China as well, so there's certainly seems to be a buildup in -- on the political sense that they are trying to make diplomacy work.

But of course, you also have some mixed messages coming from the Trump administration. You have President Trump talking during the campaign and saying he'd meet Kim Jong-un. Then the tensions are high and you'll hear all options are on the table. There are suggestions of a pre-emptive strike even or at least insinuations of that and now we're back full circle to talking to Kim Jong-un. So certainly it's a strategy that's not that clear to many people in the region but the fact that there have been -- there has been an awful lot of engagement with the region certainly from the South Korean-Japanese point of view is welcomed.

VAUSE: And, Matt, in Beijing, the other side of this, while sort of trying to woo the Chinese, if you like, the United States certainly has caused a good deal of anger with the deployment of that THAAD anti-missile defense system, now operational in South Korea. And Beijing certainly not holding back to show just how annoyed it is and angry it is out all of this. Listen to the foreign minister.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GENG SHUANG, CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN: We opposed the United States and South Korea's deployment of the THAAD anti-missile system in South Korea and urged the relevant sides to stop the deployment immediately. Meanwhile, we will firmly take necessary measures to safeguard our interests.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAUSE: Foreign ministry spokesman, I should say. But to that point, Matt, what measures are China prepared to take it here?

MATT RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's really unclear specifically how they're going to respond. I mean, we do know that they've responded against South Korea in an economic way. We've heard from several officials here from South -- the South Korean government in Beijing, diplomats here that we've spoken to that say that China has retaliated economically against South Korea specifically in a number of different ways.

Now China of course denies that but in terms of how THAAD and the deployment of THAAD and the fact that it's now operational will come into play with the Chinese-United States dynamic, there really aren't a ton of specifics yet. At this point it does appear that both sides recognize that North Korea and the continued weapons development program there does seem to be holding priority. And they seem at least tacitly to be working together so far in this.

So I guess the big question moving forward then, John, is, does the continued deployment, the operational status of THAAD, can that be used by Beijing at some point to put a thorn in the relationship between the United States and China at this point. It's just too early to tell.

[01:40:01] VAUSE: There are so many unknowns in all of this. Of course that is one of the big problems.

Matt, thank you.

Matt Rivers live in Beijing. And also Paula Hancocks live in Seoul.

We will take a short break now. When we come back a day after Hamas announced a softer, kinder policy towards Israel, its leaders sits down with CNN and explains why.

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VAUSE: Donald Trump will host Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas at the White House on Wednesday. Aides to Abbas say he is eager to engage with President Trump and he's hoping for a fresh approach to restarting peace talks.

The meeting comes just a day after Hamas released a new policy document which for the first time accepts a future Palestinian state within the borders which existed in 1967 before Israel took control of the West Bank in Gaza and all of Jerusalem.

CNN's Nic Robertson sat down with Hamas Khaled Mashal in exile in Dubai.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ROBERTSON: Hamas has issued a new political document. Has anything changed -- has Hamas changed its position on anything?

KHALED MASHAL, HAMAS LEADER (Through Translator): Of course. Since its birth in 1987 Hamas has been evolving and changing. Groups are like living creatures. If they don't evolve they die. Hamas is a serious movement and is aware of variables of the conflict within the regional and international context. Consequently Hamas has developed itself. It has opened up.

ROBERTSON: So what is it in that document that you want the world to understand, that changes the way that they should view you to get this engagement that you want?

MASHAL (Through Translator): In the document, there are numerous articles and political stances and concepts that the entire world, especially the Western countries, ought to positively engage with. For example, when Hamas addresses internal Palestinian issues and stresses that it's keen on democracy and stresses its respect for election results, its keenness to build the Palestinian society and political order on democratic foundations.

ROBERTSON: The spokesman for the Israeli prime minister says that you're just trying to fool the world. You're trying to pull the wool over the eyes of the world that in fact Hamas still attacks Jews, that Hamas still calls for the destruction of Israel. Are they correct in that? MASHAL (Through Translator): Netanyahu and the Israeli leadership try

to frame blame the Palestinians for their own crime.

[01:45:04] They are the ones occupying the land, they are the ones building settlements, stealing land. The second point, Netanyahu wants to see Hamas and the Palestinian people the way he wants. Weak on the ground and hard liners in their political and media rhetoric. Hamas is doing the exact opposite of what Netanyahu wants.

ROBERTSON: Will Hamas stop its shelling of Israeli civilians? Will you renounce violence?

MASHAL (Through Translator): We don't practice or apply violence. We practice legitimate resistance against the occupation. If the occupation and the settlements are gone, then there is no need to use force or resistance.

ROBERTSON: What I'm not hearing from you -- and help me understand this. I'm not hearing the sort of language that's going to move the dial for the international community. You're not saying that you'll renounce violence, stop shelling on Israeli civilians, stop the tunneling, and that you'll recognize the state of Israel, the sort of language that would make the international community pay more attention to Hamas. I'm not hearing that.

MASHAL (Through Translator): It's not equitable to ask the Palestinians or to ask Hamas to be subject to the criteria of the Israelis. How should Hamas be asked to stop resistance while its lands are occupied, swallowed by settlements. I am saying now that the charter is enough for equity. World capital should seize the opportunity and engage seriously with Hamas, Palestinians, the Arabs and to exercise pressure on the intransigent party which is Israel.

This is a plea from me to the Trump administration, the new American administration. Break out from the wrong approaches of the past and which did not arrive at a result. And perhaps to grab the opportunity presented by Hamas's charter. This is an opportunity for a new rapprochement that adopts the positive stance of Hamas, the Palestinians and the Arabs.

ROBERTSON: Does President Trump have the approach, the personality, do you think, to break the log jam?

MASHAL (Through Translator): Yes this provides an opportunity that this administration has approaches that are different. It has a greater threshold for boldness. Naturally without changing the conditions we can't expect to change the results. If we continue with the same faulty and redundant approaches, how can we expect different results? Like Einstein said that would be insanity. As such I believe that the current administration is capable of effecting change in the way it engages with the Arab-Israeli conflict.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VAUSE: Well, next here on NEWSROOM L.A., life advice from Ivanka Trump. A new book says it's all about hard work. Yes. All about hard work.

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(WEATHER REPORT)

[01:51:43] VAUSE: Ivanka Trump has released a new self-help book focused on working women and mothers. "Women Who Work" offers advice on everything from stellar negotiations to work-life balance. Ivanka wrote the book before the 2016 presidential election and she'll donate the proceeds to charity.

Elisha Krauss is a conservative commentator and writer for the "Daily Wire." She is with us here in the studio in Los Angeles.

Thank you for coming in.

ELISHA KRAUSS, CONSERVATIVE COMMENTATOR: Thanks for having me.

VAUSE: Good to see you this late. OK. One line from the book which has induced much merriment and mockery on the Internet. Ivanka writes about the stress of working on that campaign.

KRAUSS: Yes.

VAUSE: Going into survival mode. OK. So here's survival mode according to Ivanka Trump. "I wasn't treating myself to a massage or making much time for self-care. I wish I could have woken early to meditate for 20 minutes."

KRAUSS: Is that your Ivanka impersonation?

VAUSE: That's as good as it gets. Yes.

(LAUGHTER)

VAUSE: Clearly, you know, this book is not how to survive being a working mom, is it?

KRAUSS: I think that there is a another working mom that could relate to Ivanka Trump and that would be Chelsea Clinton.

VAUSE: OK. I thought you're going to say Gwyneth Paltrow.

KRAUSS: Or maybe her. Or Beyonce.

VAUSE: Yes.

KRAUSS: Maybe a little bit. I think that there are very few elite group of people that can relate to the Trumps anyway. And a lot of them are work people that were friends of hers. You know, pre and even post this election.

VAUSE: Right.

KRAUSS: And so I think that you're going to have a hard time finding moms, single moms, working moms, you know, married moms like myself. VAUSE: Right.

KRAUSS: Expecting moms, sympathizing with her inability to -- you know, go get a facial.

VAUSE: OK. At one point, Ivanka does recognize the advantages of actually being the daughter of a billionaire.

KRAUSS: Just on one point?

VAUSE: It is actually just on one point. I couldn't find anything else.

KRAUSS: Yes.

VAUSE: This is what she writes. "I'm deeply grateful for all the opportunities afforded to me but they alone didn't guarantee my success. Curiosity, passion, hard work and perseverance have enabled me to prove my value to myself and others beyond my surname."

KRAUSS: I do have to say --

VAUSE: Really?

KRAUSS: I've heard from people within the Trump business that they think that out of all of the kids Ivanka is the most capable of running the business.

VAUSE: Is that a low bar, though?

KRAUSS: I don't know. I have friends that went to business school with Eric and they say that he's like he's a great capable guy.

VAUSE: OK. Yes.

KRAUSS: I think sometimes we all have to overcome those perceptions that people might have of us.

VAUSE: Would Ivanka and Jared actually seriously be worth $700 million if Ivanka's last name is Trump?

KRAUSS: Of course not.

VAUSE: Exactly. So this sounds to me --

KRAUSS: Jared comes with money.

VAUSE: Exactly.

KRAUSS: Yes.

VAUSE: And this sounds to me like what Donald Trump said, I just started out with a small loan from my dad.

KRAUSS: Yes.

VAUSE: You know, it was a couple of million bucks.

KRAUSS: Yes.

VAUSE: She was completely out of touch.

KRAUSS: So when your best friend is allegedly Vladimir Putin's girlfriend, (INAUDIBLE) Murdoch, I mean, you know, how much money did she get in that? And you're running in those types of circles.

VAUSE: Right.

KRAUSS: You know.

VAUSE: So then who is this book written for?

KRAUSS: I think -- so this is my personal two cents. I think this is Ivanka Trump's attempt at being like I think someone that she talked about in the book a lot. Sheryl Sandberg. I think that she has political and business plans for the future and I think she wants to keep her father's voters very happy for that future but she also wants to reach out across the aisle like she recently tried to do with Cecile Richards at Planned Parenthood. She allegedly wanted to start a podcast where she interview people like Sheryl Sandberg and the brilliant founder of Spanx. And so I think that she has this -- she wants a foot in each door or side of the fence here.

VAUSE: OK.

KRAUSS: Yes.

[01:55:03] VAUSE: You say reaching out but she only mentions child care in the second last page towards the end. I mean, this is something --

KRAUSS: But if you watched her RNC speech.

VAUSE: Yes.

(CROSSTALK)

KRAUSS: If you take her RNC speech, it could have copied and pasted and delivered by Chelsea Clinton at the DNC.

VAUSE: This is true. Some people do believe she could be a Democrat. But what they're saying is that, you know --

KRAUSS: Not could be. She is.

VAUSE: She is. OK. No mentioned of the nannies who raised the kids. No mention of the team. The "New York Times" book review is scathing. This is what they wrote. "Self-actualization is the all consuming preoccupation of 'Women Who Work.' In this way the book is not really offensive so much as witlessly derivative, endlessly recapitulating the wisdom of other, canonical self-help and business books." Sorry I can't talk.

Then it goes on to add, "Profiting handsomely off the hard work of others appears to be a signature Trumpian trait." I mean this is --

KRAUSS: Harsh.

VAUSE: This is harsh.

KRAUSS: Well, did you really expect anything differently from the "New York Times." They've been harsh about the president and many of the Trumps even before the Donald decided to --

VAUSE: This isn't politically motivated. The book review. There are a lot of other harsh reviews out there.

KRAUSS: And I would also say that, no offense, but working moms in middle America are not picking up copies of the "New York Times" to see what they think about Ivanka's book.

VAUSE: OK. Very quickly. There was specific condition that you give to the "New York Times."

KRAUSS: Yes.

VAUSE: She talked about that infamous moment, the "Access Hollywood" moment when her father is caught making some very lewd remarks about women.

KRAUSS: Yes.

VAUSE: Ivanka apparently pleaded with her father to apologize, she said -- and the report says, "As she spoke, Mr. Trump remained unyielding. His daughter's eyes welled with tears. Her face red. And she hurried out in frustration."

This might be about the first time that publicly we know at least that he did not follow her advice.

KRAUSS: And it's one of the rare times that he hasn't followed her advice because we hear from insiders a lot that Jared and Ivanka are his top two people that he turns to.

VAUSE: Yes.

KRAUSS: When it comes to policies, to speeches, to which TV interviews he's going to be conducting. So it's kind of fascinating that when it came to this scenario.

VAUSE: Yes.

KRAUSS: That was very potentially even more damaging than it was if you hadn't had the horrible that had happened with Hillary Clinton the previous week before the election.

VAUSE: Yes. And moments after.

KRAUSS: It could have been devastating to his campaign, and the fact that he refused to listen to someone that he calls his key adviser, it's really the only proof of an example where he ignored her advice altogether.

VAUSE: Yes. And he did eventually, though, go on to apologize.

KRAUSS: I don't think in the way that -- I mean --

VAUSE: The way she wanted at least.

KRAUSS: If you look at interviews with her and Melania after that I think that their body language says a lot.

VAUSE: Yes. It does say a lot. OK. Good to see you. Thanks so much for coming in.

KRAUSS: Thanks for having me.

VAUSE: Appreciate it.

You've been watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. Stay with us. I'll be right back after a short break.

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