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WORLD RIGHT NOW WITH HALA GORANI

Soon: White House Press Briefing To Address Hurricane; Kenya Presidential Election Declared Null And Void; Trump Declares National Day Of Prayer For Sunday; Flood Victims Return Home To Survey Damage; Former Houston Mayor's Home Flooded; North Korea State-Run Media: There Is No Proper Way Out. Aired 3-4p

Aired September 1, 2017 - 15:00   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[15:00:15]

HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Good evening, everybody and happy Friday. I'm Hala Gorani. We are coming to you live from London.

A lot to get through this hour. For one thing, we are waiting on the White House press briefing to begin. The press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders

is due to speak at any moment now.

We are expecting to hear more about the response to Hurricane Harvey, but when she takes questions that she is going to have to -- and this is the

expectation as well, answer questions on many of the reports that have been out over the last several days.

For instance, the "New York Times" is reporting that Bob Mueller, the head of the special investigation into Russia is in possession of an early draft

of the Trump letter giving reasons for firing James Comey, the ex-director of the FBI.

There's also a report that Mueller has enlisted the IRS. This is the tax agency in the United States in the Russia investigation.

To add to that list, John McCain, the Arizona Republican senator penned an op-ed in the "Washington Post" today essentially say that senators in

Congress in general, that they are not Trump's subordinates, that the business of Congress to get back to normal.

So, there is -- we are seeing there the podium in the briefing room at the White House. And as I mentioned, we are expecting Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

The other thing too to report today is that the president of the United States, who a few days ago, flew to Texas, but to Corpus Christi and

Austin, not the hard-hit areas by Hurricane Harvey and its aftermath, will go back to Texas tomorrow.

Was that always part of the plan? Is it because perhaps he received criticism for not showing human empathy toward the victims? We know his

Vice President Mike Pence was seen leading a prayer circle in Texas and hugging some of the survivors of Hurricane Harvey.

So, David Swerdlick, let's talk a little bit about this repeat trip to Texas, political commentator and assistant editor at the "Washington Post."

What should we make of it?

DAVID SWERDLICK, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: So, Hala, I think, you know, in this case, the president has gotten some good marks or better marks than

he has from a variety of other issues that he's tackled on sort of being there, being president.

His administration being sort of leaning forward on trying to coordinate with state and local officials to address issues facing all of these

thousands of survivors of Hurricane Harvey.

It has not been without criticism, you know, the first day that President Trump went to Texas. He was seen as not being particularly empathetic,

talking about sort of the businesslike aspects rather than the human suffering that is really involved and still involved and ongoing.

But that being said, I think that the White House is making a smart decision, Hala, to have them go right back there to show that he is on top

of the situation. Even if he's not directly managing every aspect of it that the president is engaged.

So, I have a hard time finding too much fault with the president, particularly for this as it unfolds. We'll see what happens in the coming

weeks and months if the administration follows through, but right now, I think that that they're smart to go there back to Texas.

GORANI: Yes. And we are expecting as I mentioned Sarah Huckabee Sanders to make an appearance any moment in the briefing room. But there are all

these reports about the Mueller investigation picking up steam.

These investigations, David, take years, right, two or three-year, but it seems like every few days a new significant element is revealed about how

essentially Mueller is enlisting the help of other agencies, hiring prosecutors, widening his team and his scope. This really seems to be

going pretty quickly.

SWERDLICK: It does. I have talked to people who have worked directly with Robert Mueller in the past in their previous careers at the Department of

Justice, and they have said to me in no uncertain terms that he is the consummate professional.

That he knows exactly what he's doing, how to work the levers of government, that he is you know, a sort, an outstanding public servant, and

that his combination of legal skills and having been the former director the of the FBI is allowing him to proceed at a very direct, and as you

describe, Hala, a very expeditious pace.

He knows he's hired the best lawyers, investigative and prosecutorial. He knows exactly what to look for. He's not just coming at this as sort of a

newbie. He knows exactly what documents he might seek out and sometimes he's finding them.

And that's why we are generating so much news and people on both sides of the aisle trust him. So, I think his path is cleared in the way that

another may be more partisan seeming prosecutor or special counsel might be seen.

[15:05:02] I still think we are a long way away from this being wrapped up or from anything crystallizing together, but I do think that, yes, as you

describe, this is proceeding apace.

And I think we are going to continue to see news breaking out of this because the investigation is proceeding so swiftly.

GORANI: All right. David, standby. We'll get back to you after the press briefing. But speaking of politics, let's talk about a stunning political

development in Kenya. The country's top court declared last month's election null and void and it is ordering a new vote 60 days from now at

the latest.

Why? Because the court agrees with the petition filed by this man, the opposition leader, Raila Odinga, who made his thoughts on the country's

election process perfectly clear.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RAILA ODINGA, KENYAN OPPOSITION LEADER: We have no faith at (inaudible) electoral commission as currently constituted. They have committed

criminal acts, most of them actually belong to jail and therefore, we are going to ask for prosecution of all the electoral commission officers, who

have caused this monstrous crime against the people of Kenya.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GORANI: So, Farai Sevenzo, joins me now live from Nairobi. Why this ruling? I mean, what did they use as an argument to backup such a shocking

ruling, the Supreme Court in Kenya?

FARAI SEVENZO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hala, I've got to tell you that this story would not let this go, you or me or the Kenyan people, and what they

say, in fact, (inaudible) was their promise within 21 days to give us a full written agreement of what they were talking about.

But they reckoned that they agree with Mr. Raila Odinga that in terms of the Constitution, the Electoral Commission did not abide by the

Constitution that they failed willingly -- they did not give a couple of reasons of why the results (inaudible) was the right results manually.

So, the debate was about whether or not -- in fact, Mr. Kenyatta had won lawfully given the number of votes that were in contention. Mr. Kenyatta,

of course, tried very hard to hide his disappointment. This is what he told us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UHURU KENYATTA, KENYAN PRESIDENT: Personally disagree with the ruling that has been made today, but I respect it as much as I disagree with it. I

respect it. I disagree with it because as I have said millions of Kenyans queued made their choice and six people have decided that they will go

against the will of the people.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SEVENZO: Well, there you have it. I mean, you know, these six people Mr. Kenyatta is talking about are the six judges, who made this ruling. They

made that ruling by a division of four in flavor of Mr. Raila Odinga's petition, two against it.

So even in that little microcosm of Kenya's society, there were two people for Mr. Kenyatta and four against him, and it's put out a lot of relief for

Mr. Odinga's supporters and we don't know how it will end up. But we definitely know we are getting back to an election. That's clear.

GORANI: But I'm a little confused, I mean, you had E.U. observers, they all said the election results were valid. Other observers as well said

that it all, you know, unfolded in a way that was, you know, up to standards.

Why is the Supreme Court now coming back and saying an entire new election needs to be held? Why not a recount? Why not something less extreme? I'm

just confused about why they made this ruling? I still don't understand the reasons.

SEVENZO: You and I, both, Hala. I mean, this is something that we are desperately waiting for the judges to give us in their promise election

judgment, but you are right. It was not just Mr. John Kerry working for the Carter Foundation. It was not just (inaudible) working for the African

Union.

It was the European Union. It was the Commonwealth. It was the African Union, all gave their stamp of approval to this election, but what the

judges seemed to be saying that in terms of the Kenyan Constitution, who is only 10 years old, that the Electoral Commission would themselves admitted

that had 200 cases filed against them by the opposition when they announced the results.

They seemed to be thinking, no, in terms of Kenya's Constitution that the validity of it, their openness and the transparency was not apparent, and

therefore, the country needs to go back to elect specifically the president. They don't talk about the senators or the MPs -- the potential

vote was not transparent.

GORANI: All right. Farai Sevenzo, thanks very much with a live report from Nairobi.

[15:10:01] Well, Farai and I were mentioning the E.U. observers and making sure the new elections were fair and lawful will be crucial, of course,

giving the added pressure, the opposition is putting on the Election Commission.

Marietje Shaake is the head of the E.U.'s Observation Mission to the Kenyan elections. She joins us from Brussels. Thank you very much. She is a

member of the European Parliament.

You concluded that the result of this vote was valid as an E.U. observer. So, you must be quite surprised if the Supreme Court in Kenya has said that

they're not convinced that it was transparent and that the country needs a new election. What's your reaction?

MARIETJE SCHAAKE, CHIEF OBSERVER, E.U. OBSERVATION MISSION TO KENYAN ELECTION: Well, it's a historic ruling and I'm very keen to learn what the

details of the ruling and the findings of the irregularities that the court has found are. We even observation mission pointed to a number of critical

points that we thought were problematic and needed to be improved for future elections.

GORANI: But you thought that the results were valid nonetheless, yes?

SCHAAKE: This is not the kind of words that I have used in my statements. We saw a largely calmly conducted election day, but we pointed to a number

of also very serious issues in the running up.

For example, very crunch timelines, lack of time to test the capacity and the cyber security of the technologies used, but also people being paid at

campaign rallies, abuse of state resources at times, intimidating behavior by the police.

So, there were a number of issues that were actually quite serious that we pointed out as well as the good ones that we saw.

GORANI: So, based on that, it sounds like you're saying that another election is warranted?

SCHAAKE: Well, look, it is up to the courts and the authorized institutions in Kenya to rule about such matters and that is what we've

always encourage each person with a grievance or remark or concern about irregularity to do, just seek the avenue of the courts.

That is what the opposition has done. The court has been seen by both sides, I should say, as having conducted their work transparently and

professionally. We now are waiting for the details of the ruling and the Kenyan actions will see a rerun according to its Constitution.

So, based on your observations, you are not prepared to say one way or the other whether or not you believe it's justified to have another election in

Kenya?

SCHAAKE: We will have to look at the details of what Supreme Court comes up with, but our role is much more focused on looking at how the

authorized, competent, Kenyan institutions deal with such matters.

We are not going to give criticism from the sideline on the details, but we look at whether the practice meets the letter of the law and whether the

alt-right Kenyan institutions, the mandated Kenyan institutions play their role in doing what they are supposed to be reporting to Kenyan law.

GORANI: Marietje Schaake, a member of the European Parliament, an E.U. election observer, thank you so much for joining us.

All right. We'll get to the White House press briefing in a moment, but first, the long road ahead for Southeastern Texas as it begins to dry out

from Hurricane Harvey. The mayor of Houston is demanding immediate assistance from the federal government.

The U.S. president, Donald Trump, says he's working on it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: We are working on emergency funding. We are doing everything we can and we are working very

well with the governor, who's done a terrific job.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GORANI: All right. Let's go Nick Valencia, by the way, as -- he is coming to -- Nick, I'll just want you to tell us where are you and what's going on

around you.

NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: At this point, Hala, this is likely the worst hit area in Houston. This is the Barker Cyprus neighborhood of

Houston and it still, you could see behind me, it has about waist high water, but the good news in all of this is that people are coming out here

to help.

I want to introduce you to one of those that are helping out. We've been talking to your dad, Jonathan, I want you, father, son, come on in here.

You got to be really proud of your son what he's doing right now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He just came here simply to get what he could get, the necessary documents and it turn out now and he's helping other people to

get their necessary things out of the property too. So, it's turned out to be a situation where someone is helping someone else here.

We are staying here, were standing, Daniel, waiting for you to come out of the water. Your dad said that you have been in there for a long time.

You've been going back in and helping rescue people.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. We've been in there since morning. We just came to get some change of clothes because we just got out with like out stuff

and there are so many people walking in the water and it's just nasty. I don't want anybody else getting sick or anything like that.

VALENCIA: Yes. You're willing to risk your own safety?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. We are just trying to help people out as best as we can. There's just so many people and everybody needs something right

now. So, we are just trying to do what we can.

VALENCIA: So, let me understand this, you went in back to get your own stuff and then you turn into a first responder.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I guess, (inaudible) me and my partner, Doug, here. So, we just been carrying people back and forth and getting a couple

of people out as much as we could.

VALENCIA: This is probably the hardest hit area. The mayor of Houston was saying that the water is coming down in some places. It's drier in others.

We were here yesterday. This water doesn't look like it's going down if any.

[15:15:12] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, it hasn't. On the north side has come down, maybe 4, 5 inches, but where we live, actually the water has risen so

--

VALENCIA: Water is getting higher in some places?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The water is higher in the abby, in the back corner here by the reservoir. The water actually has risen because our cars -- we

elevated them off the ground and we can see the water levels.

VALENCIA: Are there people still stranded back there? I mean, tell us the situation back there.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is a lot of people. There's apartments all around here. The second and third floor, some people are actually trying

to wait it out. Some people are trying to come out to get food and go back since they have nowhere else to be. Some people just want to get out so

we've just been trying to help whoever we can.

VALENCIA: This isn't a flood zone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not a flood zone, which is why we moved here and I was -- me and my wife were talking about, we have to find somewhere else to

live now because we move here specifically because it wasn't a flood zone and we are the ones getting most of the water.

VALENCIA: You're on all across the world. Everyone's watching Houston right now. This broadcast is going worldwide. Tell the viewers what you

have gone through in the last week here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's been crazy to say the least. I mean, obviously, we have our hills, but a lot of people have gotten worse and I don't want

to take anything away from anybody else so, I mean --

VALENCIA: You have a big heart and you are a humble man. You are raised right. You have got to be very proud of your son.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. I am. Just this is a real unfortunate situation and we've lived through several storms here in the Houston area, but this

situation here really takes the cake and we never seen anything like this.

VALENCIA: On a side note, Hala, you see him wearing his U.S. Postal Service. He is a mail deliveryman. He was able to complete half of his

route, a little bit of his route.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I actually finished all my route.

VALENCIA: And he showed up here after he's done with work to help out people. So, if there is a little bit of silver lining so to speak in all

of this is people like Jonathan and his son, Daniel.

GORANI: I love that he finished his route. That's awesome. All right. Thanks very much, Nick Valencia there with the ordinary people from the

area affected and wanting to help others, their friends and neighbors and their community. Thank you very much

Former Houston Mayor Bill White built his home on stilts to prepare for a major flooding event, but the water still got through his front door and

flooded part of his house.

Bill White joins me now via Skype. Sir, thanks for being with us. So, you thought you prepared in every possible way for a flood, for rising waters,

for a hurricane, and yet Harvey still affected your house. Were you surprised when that happened?

BILL WHITE, FORMER HOUSTON MAYOR: Well, (inaudible) about surprise when water came through the floor of the house, but yet it's a freakish event

with, you know, 50 inches which is in a few days which is about the same we get in a normal year or less.

And so, you know, it is -- it was an incredible event and the house was built for in a one and a thousand-year event for something like that. But

you know, we are blessed with having many friends and neighbors. There are people who don't have the safety net that we do.

GORANI: And you -- when you were mayor when Katrina hit New Orleans and you essentially welcomed displaced people from Louisiana to Houston. This

-- what did you make of Houston's response itself -- the Houstonians and how they responded and reacted to this natural disaster?

WHITE: Well, we've come together, you know, it's the fastest growing, big city, in the United States of America and international energy capital and

much else, but we have people who come here including me from all states and all over the world just to work -- have a good work ethic.

We got our work cut out for us and I'll tell you what there's going to be a lot of people who know their neighbors a lot better than they did and I

think that will be a source of strength for this community.

GORANI: Yes, it sure is. One of the things as obviously you are saying it's a very rapidly growing city. It's the fourth largest in America, but

I'm sure you've read some urban planners and experts, there's one from Texas at A&M University, Sam Brody, has said the problem with Houston is

obviously 50 inches would flood any city.

But it compounds the issue that it's grown so much, there's so much that's been paved over, and so many -- you know, there's loose sort of zoning

rules and that you don't have enough green spaces and soil to absorb some of the water. It could have made it worse. How do you react to that type

of analysis?

WHITE: Well, you know, as mayor, I greatly expanded green space and now we are, you know, second nation of big cities and parked space and green space

per capita. We could always use more. We did impose restrictions of development in the flood plan then people resisted some of those.

But those have been in place since early in my time as mayor. What did happen is that you know the city grew so fast from, you know, 400,000

people or so at the end of the Second World War.

[15:20:06] But now, two and a half-million people within the city, 5 million people in the metro area that we didn't always think about -- we

didn't always plan ahead, but you know, have unexpected growth is great.

GORANI: Yes. And possibly that will change because these severe weather events, I mean, there's even another hurricane, Irma, making its way toward

areas and parts of the gulf coast.

All right, Bill White, the former mayor of Houston, thank you very much for joining us, sir. We appreciate your time. Thanks for being with us.

Again, I mentioned, we are expecting Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the press secretary there to update reporters on the very latest White House response

to Hurricane Harvey as well as the updated travel schedule of the president.

He is headed to Texas again this weekend. His Vice President Mike pence was there yesterday. He himself traveled to Corpus Christi and Austin that

are not of course in the flood zone and spoke with first responders and emergency officials.

But did not really make his way to the areas that were directly affected. There was some criticism that he wasn't showing empathy necessarily toward

the victims. Is this an optics trip? Is this a trip that perhaps was planned from the beginning?

Either way Sarah Huckabee Sanders will be taking questions on that as well as other major developments and reports of the last several days.

Now as the remnants of Hurricane Harvey slowly weakened in the center United States, forecasters are watching a new hurricane gaining strength in

the Atlantic. We mentioned it with Mayor White, Irma is now a Category 3 storm.

It could pose a major threat to the Caribbean and potentially the United States next week. Right now, the forecast models vary greatly so we can't

be sure. We'll obviously be keeping a close eye on this storm throughout the weekend.

Still to come, it's hard to imagine trying to retrieve some of your life's most valuable possessions with water up to your waist. We'll show you how

some American hurricane victims are coping a little later. They are getting back home and assessing the damage.

And pride and prejudice, North Korea style, Pyongyang shows off its latest accomplishments and slams the U.S. in a new piece of propaganda. We are

inside North Korea next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GORANI: To North Korea now which has a frank warning to America, the tide is turning in our favor they say. Pyongyang has been hailing its

achievements in a new commentary piece posted in state media.

CNN's Will Ripley has been reporting from inside North Korea and has more for us now.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WILL RIPLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: North Korea's latest response to that show of force in the Korean Peninsula, that bomber and

fighter jet flyover, has tend to threaten a retaliatory missile strike of their own as they did last month when they laid out a plan to fire missiles

towards Guam after B-2 bombers flew on the Korean Peninsula.

[15:25:10] This time around they are opening the door, it seems like, for potential diplomacy with the United States. Putting out a commentary in

the mouthpiece of the Ruling Workers Party, the (inaudible) newspaper, saying that the United States is in a situation it cannot get out of, a

situation that is getting worse by the day, and that the only solution is for the U.S. to reverse its long-standing policy of refusing to acknowledge

North Korea as a nuclear weapon state.

This puts the U.S. in a tough spot because if they were to do that, it would essentially be rewarding North Korea and its leader Kim Jong-Un for

bad behavior for nuclear tests and missile launches that violate international law.

But North Korea said they are developing these weapons to protect their national sovereignty and the commentary reads in part, "As the U.S.

escalates the confrontation with the DPRK," that's North Korea, "and waste time to find out a solution, the striking capabilities of the DPRK's

strategic forces, which put the whole U.S. mainland in their strike range will rapidly increase."

So essentially North Korea is saying either you recognize us or no matter what sanctions or pressure you throw at us, we are going to continue to

build missiles, and develop nuclear weapons, and become an even greater threat than they already are.

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaking out on this as well saying, quote, "Russia believes that the policy of putting pressure on Pyongyang to

stop its nuclear missile program is misguided and futile, provocations, pressure and militarist and insulting rhetoric are a dead-end road."

That is a jab if you could interpret it that way at President Trump for his fire and fury, locked and loaded comments that certainly did draw a strong

response from North Korea.

And on the ground here in Pyongyang, just to show you how seriously they take their missile program, they just unveiled a new stamp commemorating

the July 28th launch of the Kuasan (ph) 14 that intercontinental ballistic missile that North Korea says has the capability of reaching the mainland

U.S. with a nuclear warhead.

They believe these weapons are the leverage to get them a seat at the table and to get them respect, even as the international community continues to

condemn their actions. Will Ripley, CNN, Pyongyang, North Korea.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GORANI: All right. As I've been mentioning there, we are expecting the press briefing at the White House to start any second now with Sarah

Huckabee Sanders, the press secretary. She's going to address the president's trip to Texas, among other things. Let's listen in.

Yesterday, at the direction of the president, the vice president, Mrs. Pence, Labor Secretary Acosta, Transportation Secretary Chao, Energy

Secretary Perry, V.A. Secretary Shulkin and Acting Homeland Security Secretary Duke traveled to Texas to speak with people on the ground and

assess the damage.

Earlier today, the president signed a proclamation declaring this Sunday a national day of prayer for those affected by the hurricane.

And just this afternoon, the president heard from the heads of the Salvation Army, American Red Cross and Southern Baptist Disaster Relief on

their efforts throughout the devastation of Hurricane Harvey.

SANDERS: As Gail McGovern, president and CEO of the American Red Cross, said, the American people are bound and determined to bounce back. And

these organizations, along with so many others, have been on the ground from the beginning, helping the people of Texas and Louisiana do just that.

The president will be back in Texas tomorrow to visit with storm survivors and tell them personally that the federal government is here to help in any

way that we can. The president is currently -- currently finalizing a supplemental request to support the needs of emergency responders at the

federal, state and local level, and we'll share more information on that later.

The president has had calls with several foreign leaders who expressed their support for the American people during this difficult time. Just

today he spoke with the presidents of South Korea, Kazakhstan and Colombia, and we'll have readouts coming on each of those calls later today.

And I'd also like to take this opportunity to follow up on question I was asked yesterday, and announce that the president will host the emir of

Kuwait at the White House on September 7th, and the president of Spain on September 26th.

Finally, I'd like to reiterate the message that Tom Bossert, the president's homeland security adviser, gave yesterday. In case there's

anyone watching today that is in need of assistance, once you have access to a functioning computer, please go to www.disasterassistance.gov, and if

you have access to a working phone, please call 1-800-621-3362.

And with that, I'll take your questions.

(inaudible)?

QUESTION: Sarah, you mentioned the supplemental. Does the president feel that it would helpful to tie the supplemental to the vote on raising the

debt ceiling? And do you have any details on the amount of the supplemental (inaudible)?

SANDERS: Right now, those details are being finalized. And we'll have more information shortly, most likely by the end of today.

QUESTION: What about the issue of (ph) tying the vote to the (inaudible)?

SANDERS: Again, those -- those details are being finalized as we speak and -- and we should have something for you by the end of today.

(inaudible)?

QUESTION: (inaudible) the president said that he would have a decision on DACA in the next couple of days. Can you talk a little bit about what are

the factors driving that decision? Is what -- what is he weighing right now? And also, does he think that the program as it is designed now -- does

he thinks it's legal?

SANDERS: I just spoke with the president and we're in the process of finalizing that decision and those details, and we're actually going to

make that announcement on Tuesday of next week.

And the president's priorities on immigration are to create a system that encourages legal immigration and benefits our economy and American workers.

The president's been very clear he loves people and he wants to make sure that this decision is done correctly. And so that's what he's doing now, is

finalizing that part.

QUESTION: (inaudible) what informs his decision. Does the president feel that young people who came to this country illegally, who came of age here,

who have jobs here, went to school here -- are those people Americans or are they foreign (inaudible)?

SANDERS: Look, I'm not going to get into the back and forth while we're in the process of finalizing the details on this. But we're going to be

working on that throughout the weekend and make that announcement on Tuesday.

John (ph)?

QUESTION: How -- how incumbent does this White House believe that it is upon Congress to come up with a solution to the DREAMers?

SANDERS: Again, we're in the process of finalizing the decision on this front. And once we make that, we'll, you know, walk through...

QUESTION: I ask...

SANDERS: ... next steps of what any -- any action that would be needed at that time.

QUESTION: Sarah, if I could just follow up, I asked that question because Senator Thom Tillis of North Carolina is introducing a conservative DREAM

Act. He's leading a group of conservatives in the Senate. Senator Jeff Flake says that it important for Congress to do this. Paul Ryan, while he

said he doesn't agree that the president should end DACA as we know it, does think there needs to be a legislative solution.

Does the White House agree with what's being said?

SANDERS: Again -- I mean, I'll -- I'll say it for a third or fourth time, and I'm sure I'll get another five or six more questions on this, and I'll

get to say it another five or six more times.

We're in the process of finalizing that decision and those details, and we'll announce that on Tuesday.

QUESTION: Sarah, the president said, "We love DREAMers" today, and in April he said the DREAMers should rest easy.

You know the president. Is it conceivable that he could end this program and send all these people out of the country after saying things like that?

SANDERS: I knew I'd get another chance to say this.

We're finalizing those details...

QUESTION: That's not a detail. That's not a detail.

That's whether he ends this program...

SANDERS: ... and we -- and we're finalizing this decision.

It is part of the answer, is that we're finalizing this decision. And that would certainly be part of the details of...

(CROSSTALK)

SANDERS: ... the announcement on Tuesday.

QUESTION: Sarah, (inaudible), thanks.

The president has said that, "If we have to close down our government, we're building that wall." Is he backing down from that threat now?

SANDERS: No, the president's still very much committed to building the wall.

QUESTION: So there's a report out, though, in the Washington Post that basically says he's -- you've got a smile there on your face -- that he's

backing away from this.

SANDERS: Well, you know how I feel about using other outlets as your source. QUESTION: Well, is it wrong then?

SANDERS: I think the president's been pretty clear what his position is. I would take that as the president's position over a report on what it is.

QUESTION: Sarah, I just want to ask you two questions, one about the (inaudible) call that happened today.

(inaudible) already has a readout of the conversation, and in it, the South Koreans are saying that the president of the United States promised more

missile capabilities to Seoul. Can you confirm that? And do you have any sense of what we're talking about there?

SANDERS: Again, we'll have a readout out shortly and we'll certainly make sure all of you guys receive that.

Sarah (ph)?

QUESTION: I had a question on NAFTA as well.

SANDERS: Oh, sorry.

QUESTION: The talks are going on now. Obviously the president's made his feelings pretty clear, but he's also talked several times about terminating

the deal. Is that on the table as these talks go forward in Mexico?

SANDERS: Those negotiations are still ongoing and no decision has been made at this time.

Sarah (ph)?

QUESTION: Looking back to Hurricane Harvey, has the president made a decision what charities he's going to donate to? Do you know if that's

going to be coming from his own money or from the Trump Foundation?

SANDERS: He has not finalized where all of that will go.

And I was actually going to use that as a perfect segue to remind everybody, if you have suggestions, he is very open to hearing those. We've

gotten a couple, but please send more if you have them.

John Gizzi?

Oh, sorry.

QUESTION: But do you know whether it's going to be his personal money or money from the foundation?

SANDERS: I haven't had a chance to do that but I will.

John?

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah. Yesterday, Sheriff Dave Clarke of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, announced his resignation effective immediately and this started

a rush of speculation in the Badger State and in Washington that he would be appointed to a position at the Department of Homeland Security, possibly

even the secretary-ship, which is vacant now. A lady (ph) at DHS said, "He's not coming here," to reporters.

Is Former Sheriff Clarke under consideration for any position, particularly at the Department of Homeland Security?

SANDERS: I'm not aware of any specific jobs that he's being considered for. But, as always, we'll certainly make sure when we have a personal

announcement, we let you know.

Alex (ph)?

QUESTION: A poll released by Fox News on Wednesday said that 56 percent of Americans think the president's tearing the country apart, and approval

rating polls are usually in the 30s.

How do these poll numbers affect how the president governs?

SANDERS: I think a lot of these polls are the same polls that predicted that Donald Trump would never be in -- would never be the president, and

he's sitting in the Oval Office as I stand here. So I don't have a lot of faith in a lot of these polls.

SANDERS: I think if you look at what he's been doing this week, particularly in terms of -- of focusing on unifying the nation on Hurricane

Harvey recovery, talking about tax reform -- an issue that's got very wide bipartisan support -- the numbers, frankly, that we are focused on and that

this administration cares about aren't poll numbers, but we care about 94 percent of Americans who get assistance to file their taxes, that the

majority of Americans think the tax code is unfair, and that 70 percent of individuals in 10 key states support broad-based tax reform.

The numbers that we're focused on have to do with actual problems that Americans are facing. The numbers that we're focused on are the ones that

actually impact day-to-day life for all Americans.

That's what we're focused on. Certainly not silly polls that, frankly, weren't much use to us in the election, and certainly I don't think are

now.

Francesca?

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah.

I want to switch to tax reform.

We learned today that the president will be traveling to North Dakota next week. This week he was in Missouri. Republicans hold 52 seats in the Senate

and the Democratic senators from those states are ones that the White House is targeting.

If the White House got those votes, that would put you up to 54. Joe Donnelly and Joe Manchin are two other Democratic senators that the White

House is looking to pick up; that would be 56.

Where are the other four Democratic votes that the White House and the president think that they can get for tax reform?

SANDERS: I would love to see all of them come onboard. I can't imagine why anybody wouldn't want to support helping more Americans keep more of their

hard-earned money.

We want to simplify this -- the tax-filing process for individuals, encourage job creation, encourage job growth, provide tax relief for

middle-class America, and encourage companies to bring back money to the United States and invest it. I don't know why any member of the Senate or

the House wouldn't want to support those things, and hopefully they'll all come onboard. QUESTION: So you don't have four other states that you might

be traveling to or four other names, specifically?

SANDERS: Not specifically.

Again, I'm hoping that the senators from all 50 states get onboard to help Americans and do what, frankly, Americans are demanding.

I think you'd be hard-pressed to find somebody that doesn't support tax reform in this country. And those are the people that are the bosses of

those individuals, those are the people that elected those members to go there and help do the things that they are asking for. And tax reform is at

the top of their list.

Glenn (ph)?

QUESTION: Sarah, my paper just published a story that Robert Mueller has obtained a copy of a letter drafted by President Trump or -- in part by

Stephen Miller and other aides -- around the time of the dismissal of FBI Director James Comey that enumerates a rationale for having him removed and

focuses principally on the Russia investigation.

Couple of quick questions.

First of all, can you confirm the existence of that letter?

Secondly, can that letter be made public?

And, thirdly, we report that Don McGahn thought it was inappropriate. Can you discuss whether or not you -- you or the president believe that

drafting such a letter was appropriate at that time?

SANDERS: I'm not going to get into any of that. I think we covered a lot of those things very extensively during that time.

As Ty Cobb said earlier today, to the extent the special prosecutor is interested in these matters, we will be fully transparent with his

investigation. And, frankly, I don't have anything to add beyond that.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Can we get a copy of the letter?

SANDERS: Again, we're going to work with the special prosecutor, as Ty said. And we'll work through that process.

Noah (ph)?

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah. Sorry...

(CROSSTALK).

SANDERS: Noah (ph). Hey, guys. One at a time. We'll -- I'll come back to you after that.

QUESTION: Earlier this week the president tweeted that "talking is not the answer" in regards to the North Koreans. Today the South Korean president's

office says he and President Moon agreed to reaffirm that North Korea should be brought back for dialogue.

So which is it on that, as far as the president is concerned (ph)?

SANDERS: I think I was clear on this yesterday.

The president's looking for an integrated process and we're continuing to move forward on that. We take North Korea extremely seriously and all

options are on the table. That hasn't changed.

Noah (ph)? Sorry, I'll come back to you.

QUESTION: Follow up to the NAFTA question.

Mexico has threatened to end the negotiations that are going on if the president initiates steps to pull out of NAFTA.

Would the president view that as a positive outcome? And is there any concern overall in the White House that the excalation of the rhetoric will

hurt the White House's ability to craft a better deal as the president has promised?

SANDERS: No. We're continuing to move forward in these negotiations. And, as the president says, we'll see what happens.

April?

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: She said April. I'm sorry.

On DACA -- on the issue of DACA, the vice president said that the president will use a big heart in making this decision. What is the definition of "a

big heart"?

SANDERS: Again, I'm not going to get into the back-and-forth on this until there's a finalized decision, which we're in the process of doing, and

we'll make that announcement on Tuesday.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: I have one more -- one more, on jobs.

What's this White House saying about jobs, particularly as the unemployment rate is at 4.4 percent, but you have a continuation historically of

African-American and Latino rates that are higher (inaudible) the African- American unemployment rate 7.7 percent, Latino rate 5.2 percent, the white rate 3.9 percent?

A few weeks ago, Steven Miller was at this podium talking about the black unemployment rate versus that of the immigrants. Is there going to be a

targeted approach? I mean, these numbers bear to show that there is a difference when it comes to minority American unemployment versus

mainstream American.

SANDERS: I think you make a great point for why we need tax reform. It's one of the primary reasons that that's a top priority for this

administration is to do a massive overhaul of the system so that we have a better environment, we're creating more jobs, higher- paying jobs. And I

think that's a perfect example.

We -- there were 150,000 new jobs over this time period, and since the president came into office 1.2 million new jobs.

We are incredibly focused on this. This is not just something that we've been talking about, but something that the president's been very active in

since day one.

He's gotten rid of over 800 regulations that have created a better environment for job creation (sic). We're continuing to focus on that,

primarily through tax reform, and that's why it's such a big deal for us in the fall.

Dave?

(CROSSTALK)

SANDERS: I'll come back to you next. Let me go to Dave.

QUESTION: Can you confirm that the president is meeting with congressional leaders on Tuesday about tax reform? And does that mean that the details

are almost finished?

SANDERS: He is meeting with congressional leaders next week; and I believe it's Tuesday, yes. I believe that's right. And I believe there's a second

meeting on Wednesday, as well.

QUESTION: Does that mean it's almost finished?

SANDERS: That means that, you know, we're pushing forward.

We're going to continue, again, focused on those four principles, using that as the guide and the focal point moving forward, and sit down with a

lot of members of Congress to make sure we get this deal done.

QUESTION: Thank you, Sarah.

Two questions. The first one is on DACA.

I know you're not ready to make an announcement yet, but these people, these DREAMers came out of the shadows and they provided their personal

information to the government for work permits.

If the president does end DACA, will that information be used to round up and deport any of these people? That's my first question.

SANDERS: Well, I'll answer it the same way I've answered it 18 other times today.

Those decisions are being finalized. And once they are, we will announce them on Tuesday.

QUESTION: My second question is on infrastructure.

Cleary the devastation in Texas brings attention to problems with our infrastructure, and there's going to be a need for massive rebuilding. I

know tax reform is the focus right now, but will there be a push for an infrastructure bill, either after that or around the same time? And will

that be coming from the White House or will the administration be letting Congress take the lead on infrastructure?

SANDERS: Infrastructure, certainly, is something that's very important to the president, a priority for the administration.

Again, those details are being finalized as we speak, and we should have something for you by the end of today.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So the president said that he would have a decision on DACA in the next couple of days. Can you talk a little bit about what

are the factors driving that decision? You know, is -- what is he weighing right now? And also, does he think that the program, as it is designed now

-- does he think it's illegal?

SANDERS: I just spoke with the president, and we're in the process of finalizing that decision and those details. And we're actually going to

make that announcement on Tuesday of next week. And the president's priorities on immigration are to create a system that encourages legal

immigration and benefits our economy and American workers.

The president has been very clear, he loves people, and he wants to make sure that this decision is done correctly. And so that's what he's doing

now, is finalizing that part.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can I ask a question that might help us understand what informs this decision? Does the president feel that young people who came

to this country illegally, who came of age here, who have jobs here, went to school here, are those people Americans or are they foreign (INAUDIBLE)?

SANDERS: Look, I'm not going to get into the back-and-forth while we're in the process of finalizing the details on this, but we're going to be

working on that throughout the weekend and make that announcement on Tuesday.

John.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How incumbent does this White House believe it is upon Congress to come up with a solution to the DREAMers issue?

SANDERS: Again, we're in the process of finalizing the decision on this front. And once we make that, we'll, you know, walk through next steps of

what any action that would be needed at that time.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I asked that -- if I could just follow up -- I asked that question because Senator Thom Tillis of North Carolina is introducing

a conservative Dream Act. He is leading a group of conservatives in the Senate. Senator Jeff Flake says that it's important for Congress to do

this. Paul Ryan, while he said he doesn't agree that the president should end DACA as we know it, does think that there needs to be a legislative

solution. Does the White House agree with what's being said from Capitol Hill?

SANDERS: Again, I'll say it for a third or fourth time, and I'm sure I'll get another five or six more questions on this and I'll get to say it

another five or six more times. We're in the process of finalizing that decision and those details, and we'll announce that on Tuesday.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sarah, the President said "we love DREAMers" today, and, in April, he said the DREAMers should "rest easy." You know the

president. Is it conceivable that he could end this program and send all these people out of the country after saying things like that?

SANDERS: I knew I'd get another chance to say this. We're finalizing those details, and we --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's not a detail, that's whether he ends the program.

SANDERS: -- and we're finalizing this decision. It is part of the answer -- is that we're finalizing this decision and that would certainly be part

of --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But he must have made that fundamental decision.

SANDERS: -- the details of the announcement on Tuesday.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sarah, thanks. The president has said that if we have to close down our government, we're building that wall. Is he backing

down from that threat now?

SANDERS: No, the president is still very much committed to building the wall.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So there's a report out, though, in the "Washington Post" that basically says he's -- you have a smile there on your face --

that he's backing away from this.

SANDERS: Well, you know how I feel about using other outlets as your source.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, is it wrong then?

SANDERS: I think the president has been pretty clear what his position is. I would take that as the president's position over a report on what it is.

Jess.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sarah, if I can ask you two questions, one about the ROK call that happened today, Yonhap already has a readout of the

conversation and, in it, the South Koreans are saying that the president of the United States promised more missile capabilities to Seoul. Can you

confirm that? And do you have any sense of what we're talking about there?

SANDERS: Again, we'll have a readout out shortly, and we'll certainly make sure all of you guys receive that.

Sara.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have a question on NAFTA as well. The talks are going on now. Obviously, the president has made his feelings pretty clear,

but he's also talked several times about terminating the deal. Is that on the table as these talks go forward?

SANDERS: Those negotiations are still ongoing, and no decision has been made at this time.

Sara.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Shifting back onto Hurricane Harvey. Has the president made a decision on what charities he's going to donate to? Do

you know if that's going to be coming from his own money or from the Trump Foundation?

SANDERS: He has not finalized where all of that will go, and I was actually going to use that as a perfect segue to remind everybody, if you

have suggestions, he is very open to hearing those. We've gotten a couple, but please send more if you have them.

John Gizzi. Oh, sorry.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But can you clarify whether it's going to be his personal money or money from the Trump Foundation?

SANDERS: I haven't had a chance to do that, but I will.

John.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you, Sarah. Yesterday, Sheriff Dave Clarke of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, announced his resignation effective immediately.

This started a rush of speculation in the Badger State and in Washington that he would be appointed to a position at the Department of Homeland

Security, possibly even the secretaryship, which is vacant.

[13:35:00] Now a lady at DHS said he's not coming here, to reporters. Is former Sheriff Clarke under consideration for any position, particularly at

the Department of Homeland Security?

SANDERS: I'm not aware of any specific jobs that he's being considered for, but, as always, we'll certainly make sure when we have a personnel

announcement we'll let you know.

Alex.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A poll released by Fox News on Wednesday said that 56% of Americans think the President is tearing the country apart, and approval

rating polls are usually in the 30s. How do these poll numbers affect how the president governs?

SANDERS: I think that a lot of these polls are a lot of the same polls that predicted that Donald Trump would never be the president, and he's

sitting in the Oval Office as I stand here. So I don't have a lot of faith in a lot of these polls.

I think if you look at what he's been doing this week, particularly in terms of focusing on unifying the nation on Hurricane Harvey recovery,

talking about tax reform -- an issue that's got very wide bipartisan support -- the numbers, frankly, that we are focused on and that this

administration cares about aren't polls numbers. But we care about 94% of Americans who get assistance to file their taxes, that the majority of

Americans thinks the tax code is unfair, and that 70% of individuals in 10 key states support broad-based tax reform.

The numbers that we're focused on have to do with actual problems that Americans are facing. The numbers that we're focused on are the ones that

actually impact day-to-day life for all Americans. That's what we're focused on, certainly not silly polls that, frankly, weren't much use to us

in the election, and, certainly, I don't think are now.

Francesca.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you, Sarah. I want to switch to tax reform. We learned today that the president will be traveling to North Dakota next

week. This week he was in Missouri. Republicans hold 52 seats in the Senate, and the Democratic senators from those states are ones that the

White House is targeting. If the White House got those votes that would put you up to 54. Joe Donnelly and Joe Manchin are two other Democratic

senators that the White House is looking to pick up. That would be 56. Where are the other four Democratic votes that the White House and the

President think they can get for tax reform?

SANDERS: I would love to see all of them come on board. I can't imagine why anybody wouldn't want to support helping more Americans keep more of

their hard-earned money. We want to simplify the tax-filing process for individuals, encourage job creation, encourage job growth, provide tax

relief for middle-class America, and encourage companies to bring back money to the United States and invest it. I don't know why any member of

the Senate or the House wouldn't want to support those things, and hopefully they'll all come on board.

So you don't have four other states that you might be traveling to or four other names specifically?

SANDERS: Not specifically. Again, I'm hoping that the senators from all 50 states get on board to help Americans and do what, frankly, Americans

are demanding.

I think you'd be hard-pressed to find somebody that doesn't support tax reform in this country, and those are the people that are the bosses of

those individuals. Those are the people that elected those members to go there and help do the things that they are asking for, and tax reform is at

the top of their list.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sarah, my paper just published a story that Robert Mueller has obtained a copy of the letter drafted by President Trump and

written, in part, by Stephen Miller and other aides around the time of the dismissal of FBI Director James Comey that enumerates a rationale for

having him removed that focuses principally on the Russia investigation.

A couple of quick questions. First of all, can you confirm the existence of that letter? Secondly, can that letter be made public? And thirdly, we

report that Don McGahn thought it was inappropriate. Can you discuss whether or not you or the president believe that drafting a statement was

appropriate at that time?

SANDERS: I'm not going to get into any of that. I think we covered a lot of those things very extensively during that time. As Ty Cobb said earlier

today, to the extent the special prosecutor is interested in these matters, we will be fully transparent with his investigation. And frankly, I don't

have anything to add beyond that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can we get a copy of the letter?

SANDERS: Again, we're going to work with the special prosecutor, as Ty said, and we'll work through that process.

Noah.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you, Sarah.

(CROSSTALK)

SANDERS: Hey, guys -- one at a time. I'll come back to you after that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Earlier this week, the president tweeted that "talking is not the answer" in regards to the North Koreans. Today the South Korean

president's office says he and President Moon agreed to reaffirm that North Korea should be brought back for dialogue. So which is it on that --

SANDERS: I think I was clear on this yesterday. The president is looking for an integrated process and we're continuing to move forward on that. We

take North Korea extremely seriously and all options are on the table. T hat hasn't changed.

Noah.

[15:40:00] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a follow-up to the NAFTA question. Mexico has threatened to end the negotiations that are going on if the

president initiates steps to pull out of NAFTA. Would the president view that as a positive outcome? And is there any concern overall in the White

House that the escalation of the rhetoric will hurt the White House's ability to craft a better deal, as the president has promised?

SANDERS: No, we're continuing to move forward in these negotiations. And as the President says, we'll see what happens.

April.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On the issue of DACA, the vice president said that the president will use a big heart in making this decision. What is the

definition of a big heart?

SANDERS: Again, I'm not going to get into the back-and-forth on this until there's a finalized decision, which we're in the process of doing. And

we'll make that announcement on Tuesday.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have one more on jobs. What is this White House saying about jobs, particularly as the unemployment rate is at 4.4% but you

have a continuation, historically, of African-American and Latino rates that are higher? For August, the African-American unemployment rate, 7.7%,

the Latino rate, 5.2%, the white rate, 3.9%.

A few weeks ago, Stephen Miller was at this podium talking about the black unemployment rate versus that of the immigrants. Is there going to be a

targeted approach? I mean, these numbers bear to show that there is a difference when it comes to minority American unemployment versus

mainstream America.

SANDERS: I think you make a great point for why we need tax reform. It's one of the primary reasons that that's a top priority for this

administration is to do a massive overhaul of the system so that we have a better environment, we're creating more jobs, higher paying jobs, and I

think that's a perfect example.

There were 150,000 new jobs created over this time period, and since the president came into office, 1.2 million new jobs. We are incredibly focused

on this. This is not just something we have been talking about, but something that the president has been very active in since day one.

He has gotten rid of over 800 regulations that have created a better environment for job creation. We're continuing to focus on that, primarily

through tax reform. And that's why it's such a big deal for us in the fall.

Dave.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thanks. Can you confirm that the president is meeting with congressional leaders on Tuesday about tax reform? And, does that

mean that the details are almost finished?

SANDERS: He is meeting with congressional leaders next week and --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On Tuesday?

SANDERS: I believe it's Tuesday. Yes, I believe that's right. And I believe there's a second meeting on Wednesday, as well.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Does that mean the package is almost finished?

SANDERS: That means that, you know, we're pushing forward. We're going to continue -- again, focused on those four principles, using that as the

guide and the focal point moving forward, and sit down with a lot of members of Congress to make sure we get this deal done.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you, Sarah. Two questions. The first one is on DACA. I know you're not ready to make an announcement yet, but these

people, these DREAMers came out of the shadows and they provided their personal information to the government for work permits. If the president

does end DACA, will that information be used to round up and deport any of these people? That's my first question.

SANDERS: Well, I'll answer it the same way I have answered it 18 other times today. Those decisions are being finalized and once they are, we

will announce them on Tuesday.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My second question is on infrastructure. Clearly, the devastation in Texas brings attention to problems with our infrastructure,

and there's going to be a need for massive rebuilding. I know tax reform is the focus right now but will there be a push for an infrastructure bill

either after that or around the same time? And will that be coming from the White House or will the administration be letting Congress take the

lead on infrastructure?

SANDERS: Infrastructure is certainly something that's very important to the president, a priority for the administration. The timing of that

hasn't been set forth yet but it's certainly something that we're actively working on and looking at every day.

HALA GORANI, CNN ANCHOR: We're going to break away there from this press briefing at the White House. Sarah Huckabee Sanders there updating

journalists. She was asked a lot of questions about DACA. That is the migrant amnesty program. The big question is whether or not the Trump

administration is going to reverse this policy, essentially, granting amnesty to the children of undocumented immigrants who came to the United

States as children and then who -- many of whom have grown up, gone to school, college, gotten jobs, married, have families, to grant amenity to

those people so that they're not send back. And we essentially got a tease.

[15:45:00] We got a tease from the White House, wait until Tuesday we'll announce. We're studying this situation and we'll announce on Tuesday what

the decision is of the Trump administration.

Also questions on reports that Donald Trump was threatening to shut down the government if no money was appropriated to build the border wall with

Mexico. And other questions also on the unemployment rate and on the jobs numbers that came today that showed perhaps a slightly disappointing number

of job creations for the month of August.

Let's get David Swerdlick back. He's a CNN political commentator and assistant editor at "The Washington Post".

Let's talk a little bit about these questions on the -- on DACA as it's called.

DAVID SWERDLICK, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Sure.

GORANI: The DREMers amnesty program. What is expectation that -- Donald Trump said he -- and his team say he's going to act with a big heart. He's

going to, you know, sort of what are the motion speak on this one?

SWERDLICK: Yes.

GORANI: What's the expectation?

SWERDLICK: Yes, hi again, Hala.

So, yes, DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, it's one of those rare acronyms that actually says exactly what it is, right? Children who

came to the United States not of their own volition when they were very young by parents who came to the United States without proper

documentation. They are in the view of many people, Americans for all intensive purposes, their lives have been here, they have no connection to

their home countries and yet there in this limbo status were President Obama granted them temporary status where they can work and have work

authorization, but they have not been brought in as permanent residents of the United States.

And the challenge for the Trump administration, on the one hand, is that President Trump has said during his campaign that he wanted to be sort of

sympathetic or magnanimous or whatever word he used toward them since they came here as children. And on the other hand, you've got a core

constituency that is very hawkish on immigration in general and in illegal immigration in particular.

So I'm not frankly sure what we're going to see on Tuesday but I imagine it's going to be some sort of thing where they describe a way to address

this, that they hope satisfies immigration laws and at the same time, make the administration appear sympathetic. Maybe that means that they will not

grant permanent status, but they will allow a year or two graves period for those DREAMers to get their affairs in order or some other thing. But,

honestly, I'm speculating right now, I think we're going to have to wait until Tuesday.

GORANI: Yes, and it's interesting because it sort of like, you know, a television tease, just wait until Tuesday.

SWERDLICK: Yes.

GORANI: We'll reveal everything, we'll unveil everything on Tuesday. Because some top level Republicans don't want this program reversed, right?

SWERDLICK: That's right. And just to address what you just said, Hala, you're so spot on. Everything with President Trump is a big reveal. It's

the sort the reality TV and him coming out, right? Just like last week, he gave a political rally where he said, I'm going to take care of Sheriff Joe

Arpaio, and then pardoned him three days later. It's that same kind of like, you know, we're going to ta-da, reveal something and wait for instead

of just coming out with a policy that's already pre-baked.

Yes, to answer your question, there are top Republicans who are concerned about this. You have a Republican-controlled Congress that was not able to

agree on comprehensive immigration reform during the Bush era or the Obama era, precisely because there are hardliners who say that, you know, one way

or the other, even if it's done "humane way" that people here without documentation should go back to their home countries. This gets trickier

though when you're talking about the DREAMers because they came here when they were young, even babies and have no connection whatsoever to their

home country.

I think it's going to be a landmark moment in the Trump presidency, at least in his first year when they announced the policy on Tuesday.

GORANI: All right, all the while, he's pushing his tax reform agenda. And meantime, the Arizona senator, John McCain, wrote a pretty remarkable

opinion editorial in "The Washington Post".

SWERDLICK: Right.

GORANI: He called for more civil tone in Washington. Here's part of what he wrote, "Congress must govern with a president who has no experience of

public office. He's often poorly informed and can be impulsive in his speech and in his conduct. And, basically, we're not his subordinates.

We're another branch of government," writes John McCain.

I mean this is a man who is -- I mean the president is a member of his own party.

SWERDLICK: Right. It is sort of startling when you see someone like Senator McCain who, in addition to being a Republican in the same party as

President Trump, is sort of an elder statesman in Congress, was the Republican Party's nominee for president in 2008, of course, lost to

President Obama, someone who is a war hero, has been in Congress for years. You know, your viewers will recall that he took over that Senate seat from

Barry Goldwater. No less a figure than Barry Goldwater was the previous occupant of that Senate seat.

So I think this is Senator McCain embracing his role as an elder statesman in the party and having what you might describe as tough love for the

president of his own party, saying, look, he is not breaking from his president, but that he's at the point where he's willing to publicly in the

pages of "The Washington Post" say look, this is what's going on and he wants make it clear that he wants to return to a more traditional way of

doing things.

[15:50:19] I think you're right. It is sort of a remarkable statement.

GORANI: Well, I mean, yes, I'm not sure that his wish will be granted any time soon.

SWERDLICK: I'm not either.

GORANI: David Swerdlick, thanks very much. Have a great weekend.

SWERDLICK: Thanks, Hala. You too.

GORANI: David Swerdlick, thanks for joining up.

We'll be right back after a short break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GORANI: Hundreds of citizens are volunteering their time and muscle to help out hurricane victims in Texas and also in Louisiana. Retired New

York City firefighter, Miguel Moreno, has a special reason for lending a hand. He's part of a brigade who helps out in disaster zones in memory of

colleagues lost in the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Miguel Moreno joins us now from the convention center in Houston.

Thanks for being with us. First off, what have you been doing the last few days to help the survivors of Hurricane Harvey and the flooding?

MIGUEL MORENO, RETIRED NEW YORK CITY FIREFIGHTER: Well, Hala, we've been working very hard here. We arrived on Sunday and we found things to do

when we started working to relieve some of the pressure off to people who have been displaced due to the heavy rain falls and Hurricane Harvey. And

it seems like they are very appreciative here of what we have done for them.

We have done this before at different locations like Louisiana, California and also here. Three times I've been here. I was here last year two times

and this year is my third year coming back to help out the people of -- I lost my thought.

GORANI: Of Hurricane Harvey. I know you've been working around the clock. How has this been different from other disasters? I mean I know the

severity of the flooding must have been quite something to see in person.

MORENO: Right. It has been. And it's the amount of water that has been placed on this land of Houston and Texas and all. It's a lot of water.

And a lot of people have been displaced, and it has affected us too. But we're here to help. We help as much as we can. We are out there driving

trucks, delivering goods to certain places that have been very inundated with floods. And we are here to help them. Well, the crew is fantastic.

Right now, they're still out there.

GORANI: Yes. Can you tell us what's the personal story that affected you this time? What sits in your mind when you look back at the last few days?

MORENO: The last few days what sits in my mind is the amount of people inside of the convention center. This is the first time I've been in a

shelter that we are calling a mega-shelter. And the amount of people that are here and children, people who have been injured due to the flooding is

tremendous. We're here to help them. We'll do what we can and we will have other people coming in after we are here and doing the best we can.

We have been (ph) to many, many places out of town.

[15:55:02] GORANI: Yes. So -- but now is another phase because I understand that, you know, obviously, there is still flooding issues in

parts of Houston. But in other parts, the water has kind of receding a bit and people are assessing the horrible damage done to their property and

their homes and the rest of it.

What happens to your brigade, to your group of volunteers, of ex- firefighters at this stage of the disaster? What do you -- what is -- what are your plans now?

MORENO: To stay -- well, we put in our plans. We just continue helping out. We go over to these different places and we just help. It doesn't

matter where it is, how far we have to travel but as long as we can take care of the people of Houston and the state of Texas, this is what we're

going to do for them. They were there for us during our incident at the World Trade Center and we're back to help them. And that's what we're

going to do and continue doing as long as we can.

GORANI: We really appreciate you taking the time to speak with us, Miguel Moreno, an ex-New York City firefighter who, in memory of his colleagues

lost on 9/11, continues to do this good work. Thank you so much sir for joining us. And best of luck to you in the future. We appreciate it.

And don't forget, you can help too. Visit cnn.com/impact to find links to some of the vetted charities that are working to help those hardest hit by

the devastating storm and of course there are natural disasters everywhere and ways to help in other parts of the world as well. Cnn.com/impact,

we'll list those for you as well. These are vetted charities which means we've been done the work for you so you know your money is going to a good

organization.

And we want to update you on the latest from the disaster zone in Texas. The state's governor says that more than 42,000 Texans are staying in

shelters right now, shelter such as the one we spoke to Miguel Moreno from, and the danger from floodwaters in some areas is not over. The city of

Beaumont, east of Houston, is still under threat, has no running water, just as an example, 440,000 people have registered for disaster relief

assistance from the federal government. This is going to cost a lot of money as well.

Well, this has been the WORLD RIGHT NOW. I'm Hala Gorani. Thanks for watching. Have a great weekend if it's your weekend and Eid Mubarak to all

those who celebrate as well around the world.

I'm Hala Gorani. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS is next.

END