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CNN NEWSROOM

Voters in Alabama are about to pick the United States senator; Rob Goldstone is expected to testify before the House and Senate intelligence committees as early as this week; A week of hell on earth for thousands of firefighters and the evacuees in California to Ventura County; New details refuting claims by the Trump administration; Celebrities are boycotting SiriusXM; Aired 7-8p ET

Aired December 10, 2017 - 19:00   ET

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


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[19:00:17] ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: 7:00 eastern, 4:00 in the afternoon out west. I'm Ana Cabrera in New York. And you are live in the CNN NEWSROOM. Thank you for spending part of your Sunday with us.

The voters in Alabama are about to pick the United States senator. And the rest of the nation is closely watching this race. Two men making their final pushes with voters this weekend.

There is Roy Moore on the left there, a Republican with lots of baggage including sexual allegations and a history of anti-gay and anti-Muslim sentiments.

And Doug Jones, on the right, a Democrat running in a state that's strongly and historically votes Republican.

Also working against Doug Jones this weekend, in a loud and clear endorsement for his opponent by the President of the United States who is trying to take his support for Roy Moore to every single voter in Alabama this weekend.

CNN correspondent Kaylee Hartung and Alex Marquardt are both in Alabama for us tonight.

Kaylee, how is the President trying to reach these voters one at a time right now?

KAYLEE HARTUNG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Ana, this is the latest effort by President Trump in the last stretch of this campaign to galvanize Roy Moore's base, the evangelicals in the state, the conservatives in this state that Donald Trump won by 28 points in 2016. So while we saw him explicitly endorse Roy Moore last Monday on twitter and then turn out to Pensacola not far from the state line here on Friday, now people in their homes throughout the state of Alabama will hear President Trump's voice on the other end of the line. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Hi, this is President Donald Trump and I need Alabama to go vote for Roy Moore. If Alabama elects liberal Democrat Doug Jones all of our progress will be stopped cold.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HARTUNG: That robo-call from President Trump about a minute and a half long there as we hear President Trump lobby more of the attacks that we have heard against Doug Jones from him, that he is soft on crime, bad for the military, won't support the second amendment but also hear him tout Roy Moore and the values, the Christian and the conservative values that are so important to so many of this state that Roy Moore says he will bring with him to Washington, Ana.

CABRERA: Kaylee, standby.

Alex, Doug Jones, the Democrat, he has had some big name supporters working for him this weekend there in Alabama, heavy hitters like Corey Booker and Deval Patrick. Is their help making a difference?

ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Doug Jones certainly hopes so. This is a campaign unlike Roy Moore's that has been firing on all cylinders. They have pulled out all the stops and the name of the game this weekend for them has been get out and vote.

They are trying to get every last vote that they possibly can. We have seen them working around the clock. They had four events yesterday. Doug Jones said he stopped at seven different churches today.

It is likely that he did get a bit of a boost from these democratic heavy hitters who have come down to help him out. Deval Patrick had an event with Doug Jones in Selma, yesterday. That's a former Massachusetts governor. And Jones has also been stumping with Senator Corey Booker of New Jersey. Now those two names could likely help with the African-American electorate which will be crucial in this election.

Now these allegations against Roy Moore have turned what was already a competitive race into one that is really super tight. And Doug Jones has been trying to capitalize on those allegations to try to get votes out from people who he might not normally, from undecideds, from moderate Republicans, but also to try to galvanize women as well as those African-American that I mentioned.

But just to give you a sense of how steep this uphill battle is, he needs -- Doug Jones needs to get almost the same level of black turnout that Barack Obama got in 2012 in a Presidential race. Ana, this is a special election in an off-year in mid-December right before Christmas when people aren't really thinking about politics all that much - Ana.

CABRERA: And we have to remind our viewers, Obama also lost there by 23 points in 2012.

Kaylee, what kind of reception have you seen? I know you have been with some of these Roy Moore canvassers as they are going door to door. How are they being received?

HARTUNG: Well, the ground game for Roy Moore's campaign today was very targeted, Ana. Again, targeted to that base, that same base that President Trump is trying to galvanize, the evangelicals and the strongly conservative people in this state. There are plenty of them.