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Trump Jr. Speaks Out on Russia Meeting; CNN Goes Inside Raqqa, Syria; Trump Jr. Tweets Bombshell E-mails On Russia Meeting. Aired 1- 2a ET

Aired July 12, 2017 - 01:00   ET


[01:00:00] JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: This is CNN NEWSROOM, live from Los Angeles. Ahead this hour, Donald Trump Jr. and those e-mails revealed. When this offers dirt on Hillary Clinton from the Russian government, the President's son replied, "I love it." Plus, closing in on ISIS, the terror group fast losing its grip on Raqqa in Syria, and CNN is reporting from the front lines. And later, biological annihilation; this dark warning from a new study: three-quarters of all animal species at risk of extinction. Hello, everybody, great to have you with us. I'm John Vause, NEWSROOM L.A. starts right now.

It was a startling decision by the U.S. President's oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., released an e-mail exchange about a meeting with the Russian lawyer linked to the Kremlin, promising dirt on Hillary Clinton. Questions are now being asked if Donald Jr. may have broken the law. And the e-mails appeared to have fueled the controversy about alleged Russian collusion and his father's campaign. But Donald Jr. says, at the time, the meeting didn't raise any concerns.


DONALD TRUMP JR., SON OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: In retrospect, I thought I would've done things a little differently. Again, this is before the Russia mania, this is before they were building it up in the press. For me, this was opposition research, they had something, you know, maybe concrete evidence to all of the stories I've been hearing about, but they were probably underreported for years not just during the campaign. So, I think I wanted to hear it out. But really, it went nowhere, and it was apparent that that wasn't what the meeting was actually about.


VAUSE: But critics say, the e-mails of Donald Trump Jr.'s respond are evidence. The campaign was at least open to the idea of colluding with Russia to win the White House. We begin our coverage of the CNN's Jim Acosta.


JIM ACOSTA, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The e- mails are astonishing. Released by the president's own son, Donald Trump Jr., the message has revealed top-level officials with the Trump campaign met with the Russian lawyer, who intermediary suggests it was offering support from the Kremlin. The e-mails, first reported by The New York Times promised: "very high-level and sensitive information that would incriminate Hillary Clinton."

The messages between Trump Jr. and an acquaintance, Rod Goldstone, outlying how Russian pop singer, Emin Agalarov, whose father is tied to the Kremlin, wanted the President's son to meet with Attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya. A meeting that also included former Trump campaign Chairman, Paul Manafort, and Mr. Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

"Goldstone: Emina asked that I schedule a meeting with you and the Russian government attorney who was flying over from Moscow for this Thursday.

Trump Jr.: How about 3:00 at our offices. Thanks, Rob. I appreciate you helping set it up.

Goldstone: This is obviously very high-level and sensitive information. But as part of Russia and its government's support for Mr. Trump.

Trump Jr.: If it's what you say, I love it, especially later in the summer."

The President's son tweeted photos of the e-mails along with a statement that reads: "I first wanted to just have a phone call, but when that did not work out, they said the woman would be in New York and ask if I would meet, I decided to take the meeting. The woman as she has said publicly was not a government official; she had no information to provide." Goldstone in his own statements says, "The lawyer had apparently stated she had some information regarding illegal campaign contributions to the DNC, which she believed Mr. Trump Jr. might find important. I reached out to Donald Trump Jr. and he agreed to squeeze us into a very tight meeting schedule. The attorney in question told NBC she doesn't work for the Russian government.

NATALIA VESELNITSKAYA, RUSSIAN LAWYER (through translator): It's quite possible that maybe they were looking for such information. They wanted it so badly.

ACOSTA: At an off-camera briefing, White House Deputy Press Secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, read a brief statement from the President about his son.

SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: My son is a high- quality person, and I applaud his transparency.

ACOSTA: The White House also responded to a question about whether Trump Jr. and members of the President's team could be brought up on charges of perjury or even treason.

SANDERS: I think those new words are ridiculous.

ACOSTA: But the e-mail shatters past denials of any contact with the Russians from the Trump team. And the President's son:

TRUMP JR.: It's disgusting, it's so phony. ACOSTA: To the Vice President.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just to button up one question: Did any adviser or anybody in the Trump campaign have any contact with the Russians who were trying to meddle in the election?


ACOSTA: To the President himself. Sir, can you state --


ACOSTA: Mr. President-elect, can you say categorically --

TRUMP: Go ahead. She's asking the question.

ACOSTA: He once refused to answer whether his associates had contacts with the Russians, and has repeatedly rejected the story as fake news.

TRUMP: But the entire thing has been a witch hunt, and there's no collusion between certainly myself and my campaign. But I can always speak for myself, and the Russians -- zero.

ACOSTA: Now, Mr. Trump's advisers are defending the President's son's actions as something campaigns do.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They wanted the dirt.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Which is what political campaigns do.

ACOSTA: And it's unclear just when the president will respond to his son's e-mails on camera. The White House has released his public schedule for Wednesday, and once again for the third day in a row, there are no public events on the schedule. Jim Acosta, CNN, the White House.


[01:05:16] VAUSE: Well, joining me here now in Los Angeles: CNN's Senior Political Analyst, Ron Brownstein; and in Seattle, Washington, former CNN Moscow Bureau Chief, Jill Dougherty. So, Ron, first to you, Russia just seems to be the briar patch of this administration. It's notable there's been no tweet-storm from the President about fake news, just a statement about Don Jr. being a good person. These leaks are coming from within the White House and it this begs the question: is Don Jr. taking the fall?

RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, first, I think -- above all, it says to me that all the efforts of the president to say this is fake news, this is behind us, this is out, we, you know, people have been looking forever, they haven't found anything, all of that really just goes up in smoke. I mean, I think above all, what this tells us, is there are still a lot that we don't know. And our capacity to be surprised by what comes out is enormous.

Just look at the way Donald Trump Jr.'s story changed over the course of three days and where you end up is with this extraordinary release of e-mails, which is -- I think most extraordinary for how ordinary it seems to him. I mean, he gets an e-mail that says someone is coming to you with information that is part of the Russian government's effort to help your father in his campaign, and your reaction to that is essentially, great, let's have a meeting. There's no sense of surprise. There's no, what are you talking about?

This seems -- you know, he's very non-plussed by the idea that the Russian government is trying to help his father. So, I think that begs the question of whether that idea had crossed his desk before. And by the way, while we're speaking of tweeting, the former FBI Director, James Comey, tweeted tonight and weighed in on this question, and saying that what was reported here today, in his view, fit the textbook definition of collusion. So, many innings to in this story.

VAUSE: And with that in mind, Jill, one of the big questions by now is: how close is this Russian lawyer to the Kremlin? She insists the meeting with Donald Trump Jr., it was just a private matter. Listen to this.


VESELNITSKAYA (through translator): When it was suggested that I meet with Donald Trump Jr., I met him in a private situation. It was a private meeting. Not related at all to the fact that he was the son of the candidate.


VAUSE: So, Jill, what do we know about this Natalia Veselnitskaya? I know you can say it better than me.

JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN FORMER MOSCOW BUREAU CHIEF: Natalia Veselnitskaya. She's very well connected. She has been working. She's about, I think, 42 years old. She's been working as a lawyer; representing some pretty high-level people, especially in the Moscow regional government. And that's a very powerful part of the Russian government. I mean, that is where Moscow is where all the foreign money comes in, where the deals are made.

And as it was growing, there's a lot of real estates, and she's been involved in real estate, development of the suburbs, et cetera. So, she's really very well connected, some of her clients are quite well connected. And then, she decided that she would work to try to get rid of the Magnitsky Act, and as we know, that's the United States Act that created a black list of Russians who had violated human rights rules, and laws, and angered President Putin very much with that law. So, I don't think it's real -- you can't really say she's a lawyer for the Kremlin, but she's very well connected person.

VAUSE: You know, what has been interesting is that there's been a lot of criticism, obviously, but there's also been criticism from some over at Fox News.


to say that your collision was incompetent and that it did not work out. The fact is that this is not just opposition research. These are not somebody coming out of the woodwork in Indiana with a story about the Clintons. This is a foreign power, and not just any foreign power, an adversary foreign power.


VAUSE: And CNN has learned the London Editor-in-Chief for the Conservative Web site wrote an internal message saying, so like, this is straight up collusion, right? The final story on Breitbart covered the basic facts, did not go to the (INAUDIBLE) for Donald Jr. So, Ron, how long before this Russia story starts to resonate with those hardcore Donald Trump supporters?

BROWNSTEIN: You know, I say, I'm glad you asked that question. As you look in today, the history of public opinion polling and it is very hard to peel away a president's own party from that president. It's happened very rarely. Richard Nixon, for example, did not fall under 50 percent approval among Republicans until, virtually, the day he resigned in 1974. So, if Republican elected officials are waiting for a cavalry call from the base of the party to kind of stand up and demand a more thorough accounting, they've been willing to stand up for it. It's probably not going to come for a very long time if ever.

[01:10:18] Ultimately, the question, I think, here is really among less from the bottom up from the top down. Whether these leaders in the Republican Party -- I think that, you know, the message of this first month of the Trump presidency is there may not be a bottom in what you are asked to defend on many, many different fronts; this foremost among them. And I think the question more is going to be: is that leadership willing to take a more aggressive posture in looking for real answers? You hear, you know, flailing whispers of it, flares of it, but no systematic pressure yet from Republicans in Congress. More of a defense and an attempt to kind of shift the focus back to their agenda. That's going to have to be the pivot if this dynamic is going to change.

VAUSE: And Jill, this undercuts the administration's line when it comes to Russian collusion. Where does it lead the repeated Kremlin denials when it comes to Russian interference in last year's election?

DOUGHERTY: Absolutely a great question. Because President Putin, over and over again, has said, show us the proof. In other words, you don't have any. And now, here is proof, at least, the administration or Don Trump Jr. thought that he was going to get incriminating information about Hillary Clinton, which was coming from Russian sources, and the source of that was the Russian government. So, all of a sudden, as I was looking tonight on the Russian Web site's for this story, it's not being covered very much at all. There are some references to it but very, very little. I think it's a very hard type of story for the Kremlin to deal with, or to explain.

VAUSE: Well, clearly the Democrats see this as a smoking gun. Listen to Senator Warner. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MARK WARNER (D), VIRGINIA: These facts that have shown in the last 24 hours that there clearly was a Russian government effort to discredit Clinton, and to help Trump and that Trump official at the most senior level was aware of that? How high that goes? We've still got questions to ask.


VAUSE: And you know, one thing which is interesting on the same day that Donald Trump Jr. finalized the meeting with the Russian lawyer that was last June 7, last year. His father secured the nomination, and then, Donald Trump made this promise at a campaign stop.


TRUMP: I am going to give a major speech on, probably, Monday of next week, and we're going to be discussing all of the things that have taken place with the Clintons. I think you're going to find it informative and very, very interesting. I didn't need to do this. It's not easy, believe me. I didn't need to do it. But I felt I had to give back to our wonderful country, which has been so good to me, and to my family.


VAUSE: You know, Ron, you can spend all day connecting the dots that are out there, there are a lot of dots and you can send yourself insane, really.

BROWNSTEIN: Yes. Look, as I said before, I think, to me and to many, what's most extraordinary about these e-mails is how ordinary the idea that the Russian government is trying help Donald Trump seems to Donald Trump Jr. It doesn't bat an eyebrow at that suggestion and rather, immediately, is thinking about how to leverage it for the biggest political advantage. I think the other question that Senator Warner left out is not only how high this goes, but how broadly, how wide this goes. Because, this, while coming clearly under the umbrella of a Russian effort to help the candidate, Trump, is around a fairly narrow set of questions.

It does not, at least on the last information we have so far, which is probably not the last war we're going to have in this meeting. At least on the information we have so far does not yet implicate the question of either the hacking of the DNC, and John Podesta's e-mail, and or which I think is also an important area of investigation that the role of Russian agencies in spreading fake news and you know, misleading news stories targeted into key states in the U.S. election. And whether they had any help in deciding where from Moscow to target those efforts.

I mean, those are, in many ways, the broader questions that most of the public is still focused on. This meeting at this point does not yet address that. But one thing I feel pretty confident about is that, as these stories have shifted, it's just under the glare of the news media. Once people start testifying under oath, and documents are subpoenaed, it is likely our understanding of what happened in that initial meeting is going to be different at the end than it is today.

VAUSE: You know, Jill, just back to that promise of the press conference to deliver the, you know, the information on Hillary Clinton and all the bad stuff she has done. That, you know, that news conference never happened, was never held by Donald Trump. Even if this Russian lawyer had no information, some have suggested it could've been a typical Kremlin play to see if the Trump campaign was at least open to the idea of working with the Russian government. In a very broad sense, does that ring true?

[01:15:08] DOUGHERTY: Yes, I think it could. There's no question, that maybe they wanted to just find out whether the, you know, the campaign was interested in something or would be interested. What is a little weird is they offer something and then they don't provide it. That is a little strange.

When you listen to the interview with Natalia, she seems to think she was going to Donald Trump Jr. for some type of help and help maybe in getting rid of the Magnitsky Act that was highly political. So in a sense, you could see maybe that is what she wanted to do. But, you know, was this a test? Was this just kind of trying to find out something about the campaign or did they actually feel that, you know, maybe that was the first foray and they could have more with Donald Trump Jr.? He seemed very eager to get more information.

BROWNSTEIN: And real quick, John, I mean, not only him, he brought in Jared Kushner and Paul Manifort. Nobody expressed concern about talking to someone that was presented as an agent of the Russian government, whether it was an over statement or not. And none of them contacted the FBI or did anything like that. So all of them, at least expressed a willingness to talk, whether or not they knew what the purpose of the meeting was before they walked in the door, they heard it once they got there. And none of them kind of ran from the room raising concerns.

VAUSE: OK. And with that, we are out of time but good to have you both with us on a night like tonight because you have unique expertise on this. Thanks to you both.

When Donald Trump Jr. posted those e-mails on Twitter, many were stunned a brief almost universal jaw dropping moment which is quickly followed by a lot of legal experts claiming the President's son may have committed a crime. But exactly what law could he have broken? A closer look at the legal jeopardy facing Trump Jr., CNN Contributor and and former Ethics of the Obama administration, Norm Eisen joins us now from Washington. Good to see you.

NORM EISEN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: John, nice to be here again.

VAUSE: Let's look at the big picture first specifically with regards to what we now know in those e-mails from Donald Trump Jr. Do those e-mails relate to, what perjury, violation of campaign finance laws or some suggested possibly treason?

EISEN: We used to get complicated hypotheticals and this is one. The e-mails of course, show Donald Trump Jr. embracing an offer which the e-mails indicate is coming from the Russian government to help the Trump campaign and hurt the Hillary campaign. The most likely criminal violation that is shown, and it's still too soon to say if there was a violation, but the most likely is a campaign finance law violation. That's because under U.S. law, campaigns are not allowed to solicit help from foreign governments or foreign individuals in the form of contributions whether it's contributions of cash, or what we call in kind contributions. So there's a serious issue there. And there are a variety of other legal questions as well.

VAUSE: OK. So, with the campaign finance law in mind, specifically, June 3rd last year, the e-mails shows that Trump Jr. was promised information had that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be useful to your failure and that was in one of the e-mails to avoid any doubt where the e-mails were coming from. Seventeen minutes later, Donald Jr. replies if it's what you say, I love it especially later in the summer. So explain why that is so significant.

EISEN: Well, from a campaign finance law perspective, and a variety of other perspectives as well, what you have is a foreign government saying hey, we are going to help. This is evidence of the much talked about collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign, it's not dispositive evidence. It's not final evidence, but it's another piece in the puzzle and potentially, could see some serious penalties levied including criminal ones.

[01:20:01] VAUSE: OK. Getting back to the campaign finance laws and what it means to receive something of value. There seems to be an exemption here, and it goes on to say, the value of services provided without compensation by any individual who volunteers on behalf of a candidate or political committee is not a contribution. Some have sort of argued that maybe this means that information, which was offered up, is not something of value and that might be the exemption for Donald Trump Jr.

EISEN: Certainly the argument has been made, the better view, the majority view is that exception is not intended to cover opposition, research or other dirty tricks by a foreign government. If it were, it would be big enough to drive a truck through. So the law is not there as an argument about it. The argument is that, that exception does not apply in this case.

VAUSE: Last month, President Trump tweeted out this, "The reason that President Obama did nothing about Russia after being notified by the CIA of meddling is that he thought Hillary Clinton would win and did not want to rock the boat. He colluded and obstructed and it did the Dems and crooked Hillary no good." Could the President come to regret that tweet? Could that come back to haunt him?

EISEN: I do think that when the history of the age of the Trump's is written, it will show that has done him a lot of harm. In the tweets, Donald Trump Sr. is implicating Donald Trump Jr. after the information we have today. President Trump has done plenty in his Twitter account to harm himself including creating evidence of the obstruction of justice charges that are now being investigated reportedly in connection with the President's firing of Jim Comey. Now we have tweets that may come back to harm President Trump's son.

VAUSE: Norm, as always, good to see you and I'm sure we will speak again before it's too long.

EISEN: Thanks for having me, John.

VAUSE: When we come back, we go to Raqqa in Syria and an exclusive report on the fight to retake the city from ISIS. Also ahead, and the winner is? The IOC makes a break from tradition awarding two Olympic summer games at once but leaves it to Los Angeles and Paris first to sort out of the details.


[01:25:13] VAUSE: U.S. President Donald Trump has spoken with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi congratulating him on the liberation of Mosul from ISIS, the President also praising the heroism of Iraqi and American troops who defeated the terror group where it first announce its soft declared caliphate three years ago. The liberation of Mosul is a major military victory against ISIS, now the next five years reclaiming Raqqa in Syria, the U.S. back collision of Kurdish and Arab fighters, the STF has encircled the city and breeched it ancient wall. And CNN Journalists were the first to get inside; here is our Nick Paton Walsh.


NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is where it sends, ISIS is twisted ideas was built on claim their own state. Well now ahead of us, that's just only a few square miles of old city streets and now from spawn left of their capitol Raqqa. The major threat on the street we're being told is, is from snipers. Although, this Syrian, Arabian Kurdish forces have pushed further inside the old city and now have positions past its historic old wall. A few days earlier surgical coalitionist trying punched holes through these 1300 year old defenses. They say that I move forward in daylight because of ISIS snipers but here they are literally 20 meters way from the historic old city wall of Raqqa a milestone in war to rid the Middle East of ISIS. Special Forces providing precision firepower from two miles down the road. Marked here where civilians are trapped, perhaps as human shields.

Some days ISIS cuts off water and everything to them, he says, they told them to stay inside, if they go out, they will be slaughtered. We are the first journalists they take in. Over this side they say their safe from sniper cover and there is we'll see more right there. Stop; stop something we just hear regularly throughout the time we are here, targeting ISIS positions deeper inside Raqqa. And today, that the foot soldiers in the global fight against ISIS, fueled by hope of U.S. support for a Kurdish homeland nearby afterwards. Donald trump? Donald trump? He didn't vote trump here. But the White House has let this assault

gather pace, whisking through three miles of Raqqa's out skirts in his many weeks to hear, it is early empty. The one civilian we do see further out, unable to speak, get her story is in her bloodshot eyes. At least 50,000 other stories of loss and horror are now encircled inside Raqqa, hostage to the question when does ISIS's war to resolved to die? Finally break, Nick Paton Walsh CNN Raqqa, Syria.

VAUSE: And we will take a short break, when we come back, scientists sounding the alarm on what they call biological annulations, a new study lays out what could be a sixth mass extinction of event.


[01:31:05] JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back everybody, watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. I'm John Vause, with the headlines this hour.

Donald Trump Jr. defending his meeting with the Russian lawyer last year to get damaging information about Hillary Clinton. Trump Jr. released the e-mails on Tuesday which claim the information was part of Russian and its government supporting his father who is now the U.S. president.

The international coalition fighting ISIS says its top priority right now is driving the terror group out of Raqqa in Syria. Military officials are declining to say how long this military offensive would take. The battle comes just days at the ISIS was defeated Mosul, Iraq.

And scientists are warning the Earth is entering its sixth mass extinction event. Comprehensive new study found that nearly one-third of the planet's land based vertebrate species were rapidly declining. Researchers place blame primarily on us, even contributions to climate change like fossil fuel emission and habitat destruction.

Well, more on this. Joining us now via Skype, Paul Ehrlich, he is the president of the Center for Conservation Biology at Stanford University. Paul thanks for being with us.

You know, over the past 500 years the Earth has seen five mass extinctions. Your study finds number sixth though, stands out for some very bad reasons.

PAUL EHRLICH, PRES., CTR FOR CONSERVATION BIOLOGY, STANDFORD UNIVERSITY: Well, the last one was about 66 million years ago, long before there were people when we kissed goodbye to the dinosaurs, except for the birds.

Now, human beings are causing, this is the first time we've had a mass extinction caused by a knowledgeable agent doing the extinction. We know the last one was an asteroid hitting the earth. Now it's just human over population and over consumption.

And the sad thing is of course, we are utterly dependent on the plants, animals and the micro organisms of the planet and wiping them out is the equivalent of sawing off the limb we're sitting on. And that is it's pushing us towards the collapse of civilization because of the essential services that we depend on from those other organisms. It's a dangerous situation.

VAUSE: You know the numbers are seemed so incredibly bleak. In the last 40 years, which is in my lifetime, 50 percent of the wildlife on this planet has been wiped out. Is one of the problems here simply trying to get people to understand the scope and the extent of this crisis?

EHRLICH: Yes. And not only is it trying to get people to understand it, but trying to get politicians to understand it, to take the actions that we need to preserve this life support systems for our grandchildren and for me for a great grandchildren.. So, it's a gigantic problem. It's largely political and economic.

As long as we feel that we can grow forever, you know, the average economist lives in a magical world in which they think you can grow forever on a finite planet. And we're quickly seeing in the climate situation which is similar and tide to the extinction situation that we can't grow forever on a finite planet without suffering catastrophic consequences.

But unhappily, of course, I just going to say, we're living in a country governed by thugs, ignorant people who have only their self interest. And things are going backward. In other words, we're seeing the EPA which was too weak destroyed. We're seeing the endangered species act also too weak but something being attacked now by the administration. So, it's a grim situation where the people who should be doing something about it are actually making it worse.

VAUSE: Paul, very quickly, we run out of time. There is some debate if the mass extinction event has begun over on the verge it happening if we don't change what we're doing about how we're treating this planet, will that be a distinction without a difference.

EHRLICH: Yes. Exactly. There's no question at all that we're well into it both in loss of species and what we did in the paper. We have loss of populations. For example, if we still had honey bees in Africa but they gone extinct to North America. That would costs us about $18 billion a year and a much depressed diet.

[01:35:16] Although, we would have loss the species. It's a lost of populations that supplies us with the services we demand. That's the critical issue and that's going on in a horrendous rate.

VAUSE: Paul, thank you so much for us for being with us. Thank you for the study. It's important. You also note and say, it's not too late, things can change and all is not lost at this point. Paul, but thank you so much.

EHRLICH: Absolutely. My pleasure.

VAUSE: Well, we'll take a short break. When we come back, Paris and Los Angeles are all but certain to host this Summer Olympics biggest center, which one, a live report from Paris in just a moment.


VAUSE: Paris and Los Angeles look set to host the Summer Olympics they just don't know exactly when. The Internation Olympic Committee took the unusual step of awarding the 2024 and 2028 games the same time, maybe up to the cities to work out who will get which year.

Jim Bittermann joins us now live from Paris. You know, Jim, it really to seem to be -- and the winner is, you know, you guys work it out amongst yourselves. Why did the IOC take this approach?

JIM BITTERMANN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think John this is a chance to acknowledgment but that in fact, the whole Olympic process from the bidding right to the staging of the game has just gotten to be too expensive. This year, for the bidding for the 2024 games, the French are expected to spend 50 or 60 million Euros just in the bidding process. And then they'll spend another if their estimates are correct under 6 billion if they got the Olympics 2024.

In any case that idea that the bidding process alone is costing a huge amount of money to the individual cities. So, a number of cities drop out to the running this year. There were five cities originally and who wanted the stage the games and three of the five dropped out largely because of the fact that they are so expensive and their local populations didn't really want to have the games because they thought it might raise the public debt.

So, in any case, if the Olympic Committee and Los Angeles decided that the way it will work this year is that they're going to announce, 2024 Olympics and 2028 Olympics at the same time, and that will be on September 13th. It's just a question now of which of the two remaining cities that were in the running, Los Angeles and Paris, will in fact get the nod for 2024 or 2028 really a kind of a non- competition as to be worked out between the Olympic Committees and Los Angeles and Paris as well as the International Olympic Committee. A tri-partite agreement they are looking for. John?

[01:39:59] VAUSE: And it seems both cities want 2024. Paris has some advantages. Los Angeles has some disadvantages to 2024.

BITTERMANN: I think that's right, John. I mean both cities of course have been polishing up their advantages. For Paris, it's not only the fifth time, fifth round in recent memory that they've tried to get the Olympics and the four other times they failed. But also, 2024 would be the 100th anniversary of the last time Paris got the games back in 1924.

So, they are selling that point hard. They are also selling hard that the 95 percent of the venues are already constructed here. Los Angeles on the other hand is saying that, they have got a number of advantages in the sense that they don't have to build a housing project for the Olympics athletes as Paris would have to. But there's also some disadvantages in Los Angeles.

One of the main ones that Paris keeps emphasizing is the fact that transportation is difficult in Los Angeles, and that the venues are widely separated across the city. So, that advantages and disadvantages, whether either one of the cities really will benefit from the games. Los Angeles says that they'll be able to make money. Paris is not quite so optimistic about that, but they do say it will at least break even. John?

VAUSE: And if they can't work it out who gets which year then the IOC will make its own decision for at least 2024. But that is very unlikely at this point. Jim, always good to see you, thank you.

Well, some good news, the out Korean pop star Psy, and that really annoying ridiculous song he has, has been knocked from YouTube's the number one spot.




VAUSE: After five years, grilling painful years and more than 2.8 billion views who would watch this. Gangnam Style is no longer the most viewed video on the site, hallelujah.




VAUSE: Wiz Khalifa's "See You Again," featuring singer Charlie Puth is new a record holder. At least he can sing. It racked up more than 2.9 billion views. This song is from the hit movie "Furious 7", pays tribute to the lead actor Paul Walker, who died in a car crash before the film's release.

OK. Kermit the Frog is going to get a new voice, but hopefully no one will notice.




VAUSE: Probably, Steve Whitmire has been voicing the world most famous and video in to the past 27 years. He took over after a month that created Jim Henson died in 1990. Muppet's performer Matt Vogel will be the new voice of Kermit.

You have been watching CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles. I'm John Vause. Stay with us, I will be back with lot more news at the top of the hour but first, World Sports starts after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [01:45:01] KATE RILEY, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Welcome along to World Sports. I'm Kate Riley at CNN Center. We are going to start with a bit of history at Wimbledon for you on Tuesday.

For the first time since 1978, we saw the first British woman to reach the semifinals. The hyper (ph) fans are now eagerly anticipating the semis after Johanna Konta beat Simona Halep to reach the last four and she did in a hard way on center court. The Brit coming from behind against the world number two but she played aggressively and was rewarded with 48 win, taking the decisive set find set 6 Games to 4.

Halep was distracted by squealing fan on match point but she look gracious in defeat, even though it also cost her the chance to be the world number one. Meanwhile, Konta is saying that she believes in herself and is optimistic of making even further progress.


JOHANNA KONTA, FIRST BRITISH WOMAN IN WIMBLEDON SERIES SINCE 1978: I used to be in the semifinals of my home slam, and to do that, in front of a full center court, I mean it's pretty, it's pretty special. And I think the level of tennis that both of us played today, it was just a tremendous match. So, I think just to be a part of a match like that again. I've been very fortunate in this championship, so, I have had two of those now. I feel very lucky.


RILEY: Great news for her. Now, what a day it was also for Venus Williams and her victory on Tuesday. Now, remember, the American is a five-time champion of the All England Club. And she was too match for one of the games rising stars, beating the reigning French Open Champion Jelena Ostapenko in straight sets that means that Williams will actually be the oldest woman to appear in the semis for some time, and you have to go back nine years to find her last win. It just goes to show that age is irrelevant.


VENUS WILLIAMS, TENNIS PLAYER: I don't think about it. I feel quite capable to be honest and powerful. So, whatever age that is as long as I feel like that, then, I know that I can contend for world titles every time.


RILEY: Right, well, let's have a look at what who is going to be playing whom next. You can see that the Konta, the home favorite there will be playing Venus, a player that she has beaten in three of their last five meetings. It will be quite an occasion at Wimbledon. Konta said she is humbled just to be sharing a court with the five- time champ. And the other semifinal, of course, is between Spain's Garbine Muguruza and Slovakia's Magdalena Rybarikova.

Now, over on the men's side of things. Novak Djokovic became the last man in to the quarterfinals and he did it with a straight set win against Adrian Mannarino. Djokovic is a three-time Wimbledon champion but he has gone off the boil in the last 12 months with great on Andrian undefeated now is serving as his coach. And so twisting this game and returns to the semi is a really good sign as well for long period. It was a flawless performance from the former world number one. He will play Thomas Berdych next.

We all know that the bidding for the Olympics is a rather expensive prospect. Actually winning the right to host the games can then cost billions like we have seen in recent years. And for some nations, those costs have become crippling and that is partly winning the bids for the 2024 summer games were canceled by the alliance of Hamburg, Rome and Budapest.

Only Los Angeles and Paris remain. And today, the International Olympic Committee have made the decision to let them both host the game, one in 2024 and then the next in 2028. It's an unprecedented move for the IOC, but a sensible one, in this spare (ph) time. The only thing left to decide is who goes first.

Coming up on the show, the king of controversy was in the spotlight on Tuesday once again. Catch what happened in California when Mayweather and McGregor face the media.


[01:51:21] RILEY: Welcome back to World Sport. If you want something done properly, you have got to do it yourself or so they say. In boxing, that means don't leave it up to the judges who have a reputation for sometimes getting it wrong.

Ever since the Australian boxer, Jeff Horn beat Manny Pacquiao on the unanimous points decision earlier of this month, Manny have been crying foul, however, in a highly unusual move. The WBO decided to rescore the fight with different judges and they got the same results.

The Boxing Organization said they wouldn't have had the authority to overturn the result but they went through the process in the interest of transparency. And earlier, our Don Riddell caught up with the Champion Horn, who gauged his reaction.


DON RIDDELL, CNN ANCHOR: Jeff, congratulations. I guess, on the unique achievement you won the same fight twice, how does it feel to be the new champ?

JEFF HORN, BOXER: Yes, thank you for that. Yes, I feel extremely good specially defending my title already, after just a week, with the recount.

RIDDELL: There's been so much debate about the scoring of this fight. Why do you think that was?

HORN: I don't know. Because -- it was a close fight. And because it was done in my hometown, I guess people watching with the commentators, favoring Manny Pacquiao, that was probably why everyone is asking what's happening.

RIDDELL: Did it matter to you that they went and rescored it? I mean, was that something that you wanted them to do?

HORN: No, I thought I had won the fight and after it Pacquiao had same submitted that he had lost as well. So, I was surprised that the recount actually happens, but it's good that it's clarified that I won the fight on the judges' scorecards.

RIDDELL: Yes, but nevertheless, this has been all the talk for the last week since the fight. So, I mean, how does all the controversy effected your enjoyment of what is the biggest achievement of your career?

HORN: Look, I have still enjoyed it a lot since the fight. And I have a lot of people supporting me, and saying that don't worry about what other people are saying, you definitely won that fight. But, it is definitely a relief when more judges come through and score the fight again and I win.

RIDDELL: It was a bruising encounter, wasn't it? For both of you and you still bear the scars of the contest. What do you think was it that gave you the edge in the fight?

HORN: Look, I think it was definitely my comfort style and I had to take it to Manny, because I knew if I was going to try and counter him and go backwards a lot, that was going to hand the rounds to Pacquiao because he likes spraying a good counter at the end of the round and stealing it. So, I had to push forward and had to work him the whole fight to try and get the win.

RIDDELL: How interested are you in fighting him again? What are your plans for your next fight?

HORN: Yes look, that's definitely the option that Pacquiao has, whether he wants to fight me again and I would be up for it if he wants to and that would be probably done later on in this year if that's to happen. Otherwise, we will start looking for another fight.

RIDDELL: And if you do fight again, where do you think you'd want it be?

HORN: Look, I'm happy to fight in the same place again. I'm happy to fight in Brisbane again. But if they want to go somewhere else in Australia so be it or wherever else they want.

RIDDELL: All right. Jeff Horn, many congratulations again on winning the same fight twice that is quite an achievement. Enjoy it, mate and thanks for being with us on World Sport.

HORN: Thank you.


[01:54:58] RILEY: Jeff Horn there. All right, and admittedly, that fight may not have the star power of this next one. We are about to tell you about the Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor boxing match that is scheduled for August 26th. Well, the hype began in earnest, Tuesday night in Los Angeles, the two larger than live as soon as they met the media for the first of a four-city International promotional tour.


CONOR MCGREGOR, MMA STAR TO BOX FLOYD MAYWEATHER AUGUST 26: I'm a young, confident, happy man that has worked extremely hard for this. I have worked very, very hard for this. So, I am just up here, embracing everything, nobody is going to do nothing, nobody can do nothing up here to me. I can do want -- I want up here.

FLOYD MAYWEATHER JR., BOXER: We know Mr. Tap-out likes to quit. And you will wave that white flag, because you can choose which way you want to go. And I am guaranteeing you this, you are going to go out on your face or you're going out in your back.


RILEY: All right, that is just about it for World Sports today, I'm Kate Riley at CNN Center. But I'll leave you with another look at today's play at Wimbledon. It's now time for our Rolex Minute.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The women's quarterfinals with center stage on day eight of Wimbledon. On the center court roof, Johanna Konta mounted a thrilling come from behind victory over her number two saves Simona Halep. Konta, the first British woman to reach the semifinals since Virginia Wade 40 years ago, she now faces Venus Williams.

On the number one court, Svetlana Kuznetsova was unable to cope as Garbine Muguruza exerted remorseless pressure. A straight sets win propelling the 14th seat into a final four match with unheeded Magdalena Rybarikova.

A world class field including former winner, Martin Kaymer gathers a Donald links for the Scottish open. The fourth event of the Rolex Series will commence is July 12th.

MARTIN KAYMER, GOLFER: For me, you know, as far as those Germans who represents that represents maybe the European tour. When I won the Scottish event, it meant kind of a lot to me because of the people, because of the knowledge, because the whole atmosphere that golf brings in to the country here.