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President Trump Invites Doug Jones To White House After Alabama Senate Win; Cycling Star Chris Froome Fails Drug Test; Man City Claim Record 15th Straight League Win. Aired 2-3a ET

Aired December 14, 2017 - 02:00   ET

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


ISHA SESAY, HOST OF CNN NEWSROOM LIVE FROM LOS ANGELES: This is the senior news room live from Los Angeles. Ahead this hour; Alabama Senate Candidate Roy Moore releasing a new video, still not conceding he lost, while the rest of Donald Trump's party struggles to move on.

Refugee camps swelling, monsoon season coming, children going missing, women fearful of sexual violence, the plights of the Rohingya growing even more dire. And more women coming forward claiming they were raped by the godfather of hip hop music, Mogul Russell Simmons.

Hello and welcome (ph) to our viewers around the world. I am Isha Sesay. News from L.A. starts right now.

One day after a bruising defeat in Alabama's Senate race, U.S. President Donald Trump is one step closer to his first major legislative victory. House and Senate Republicans have a tentative agreement on a tax reform plan. The president hopes Congress is only days away from passing what he calls "A giant tax cut for the middle class."

(VIDEO BEGINS)

DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: If Congress sends me a bill before Christmas, the IRS - this is just out, this is breaking news, has just confirmed that Americans will see lower taxes and bigger paychecks beginning in February, just two short months away.

(VIDEO ENDS)

SESAY: While President Trump is downplaying the humiliating Republican loss in the deep red state of Alabama, Mr. Trump's bet on the wrong candidate twice. First, Luther Strange in primary, then Roy Moore in the special election. The president says some Republicans are happy Moore lost but he would have liked the seat to remain Republican.

The Democrat Winner, Doug Jones, says President Trump called him Wednesday.

(VIDEO BEGINS)

DOUG JONES, SENATORIAL CANDIDATE: Now, he - it was a very gracious call. I very much appreciated it. He congratulated me on the race that we won. He congratulated me and my staff on the way and the manner in which we handled this campaign and went forward. And we talked about finding that common ground, to work together. And he invited me over to the White House just as soon as I get up there.

So it's a very nice phone call, very pleasant phone call and I appreciated him very much, reaching out to me.

SESAY: Meantime in the Russia investigation, Donald Trump Jr. once again facing questions on Capitol Hill. He had no comment as he left the meeting with staffers from the Senate Intelligence Committee.

And the man overseeing Rob Mueller's investigation is defending the special counsel. Some Republicans claim the probe is politically biased, after an FBI agent was removed for sending anti-Trump text messages. But Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein says Mueller is an ideal choice for the task and that no one has asked him to fire Mueller.

(VIDEO BEGINS)

UNKNOWN: If you were ordered today to fire Mr. Mueller, what would you do?

ROD ROSENSTEIN, DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL: As explained previously, I would follow the regulation. If there were good cause, I would act. If there were no good cause, I would not.

UNKNOWN: And you've seen no good cause so far?

ROSENSTEIN: Correct.

UNKNOWN: Thank you.

(VIDEO ENDS)

SESAY: Busy, busy day in U.S. politics. For more on all of this, Political Analyst Michael Cernovich joins us. Now, Michael, I'm so pleased you're here.

MICHAEL CERNOVICH, POLITICAL ANALYST: Good to be here.

SESAY: There's so much to discuss. Let's start with Alabama, shall we, and that shock win for Doug Jones. I mean, no one can forget, and it is the headline, that Alabama is a deep red state. The first time the Democrats have won a Senate seat there in over two decades. Political watchers saying this is nothing short than one giant self- inflicted wound on the part of the GOP. How do you see it?

CERNOVICH: Well, I think you can sum it up in two words; Moore, Trump. Moore was a terrible candidate. The Republicans should have won this state easily going away. Moore was toxic. And then Donald Trump - there's a backlash against Trump, I think. He wants to be seen as the man who moved the machinery and moves the pieces on the chess board. But he may very well be just a paper tiger right now, might even be toxic to some Republicans.

And so I think it was both the Moore and the Trump effect that allowed the Democrats to steal a seat they should never have won.

SESAY: OK. You say this was a question of Moore and Trump. Others are saying this is about Steve Bannon. Steve Bannon who championed Roy Moore, Steve Bannon who's been at the helm of a front to take on establishment Republicans. Listen to what Congressman Steve King from - Peter King, rather, from New York, had to say. Take a listen.

(VIDEO BEGINS)

PETER KING, CONGRESSMAN, NY-R: This is not even posed (ph) as a political issue, almost as a moral issue. This guy does not belong on the national stage. He looks like some disheveled drunk that wandered onto the political stage.

(VIDEO ENDS)

SESAY: Well, not holding back, letting rip, the day after a monumental loss. But is Steve Bannon fatally wounded?

MICHAEL GENOVESE, POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, Donald Trump brought him into the process. Donald Trump has been associated with him now since the campaign and while they've separated in terms of Bannon leaving the Whitehouse. They still work together, they still communicate a lot together and Bannon is a side of Trump that wants to tear down the machinery, wants to tear down the system.

And that part of Trump was fed into the Moore team and the Moore campaign and it fell flat. Bannon was severely wounded in this because the mainstream Republicans would love to see him pushed out. And this is a way for them to just sort of nudge him away.

SESAY: The Democrats obviously see this win as something completely different. For them this was an issue of hard work. Take a listen to Doug Jones and in how he described the effort on Wednesday.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DOUG JONES, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: We knocked on 300 thousand doors. We rang 1.2 million phones across this state. We knew what we were doing, we knew the importance of minority votes and we reached out. And I think they responded, but I also believe this. I think we had a lot of support from the leadership in the African American community.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SESAY: So, talk to me about that. How he got such large numbers of African American vow and how he really demonstrated a muscular turn out. You know get out the vote operations, something we haven't seen from the Democrats recently when it isn't a case of a presidential election.

GENOVESE: Right, well I think everything Doug Jones said is true, but not quite as robust as he would like to make it seem. They were very well organized they did have a great get up the vote drive. They outspent more significantly some people say almost five to one. African Americans came out in record numbers even more so than 2012

for Barak Obama. So, I mean if anything it's African American vote. It's also educated white women who turned against the Republicans. But I think as good of a campaign as Doug Jones ran it was the bad campaign and the bad candidate of war.

SESAY: So if anything if you had a stronger candidate in Roy Moore you think it might have been a different outcome given the demographics of Alabama?

GENOVESE: I have no doubt, Alabama is a red state. It's going to remain a red state. Doug Moore won a narrow victory in a red state and so what you're going to see and Donald Trump did a very smart thing in calling to congratulate Doug Jones.

What you're going to see is that Jones has to move to the right politically. He can't be seen as a fixture in the Democratic Party, can't be seen as the puppet of the leadership. He's going to be able to vote a few times here and there with Donald Trump.

SESAY: Yes.

GENOVESE: And Donald Trump realizes that and that's why reaching out a hand of friendship to Doug Jones makes a lot of sense for the President.

SESAY: Yes, well Doug Jones clearly looking forward. I want to play what - a little bit more on what he had to say and in terms of what this means for Alabama, let's take a listen. Then I also want us listen to what Roy Moore has had to say in recent hours.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DOUG JONES: This state is going to be progressed as far as we can because beginning today, beginning with this election I believe we're on a road to having a competitive two party state without one party domination. And I think that - that helps every state if you look around this country. And that's what I want to see, I want to see that with the Democrats I want to see that with the Republicans.

It doesn't help anybody to see one - it doesn't help a state, it doesn't help a country to see one major political party at civil wars with itself.

ROY MOORE: This election was tainted by over $50 million from outside groups who want to retain power in their own corrupt ideology. No longer is this about Republican or Democrat control. It's truly been said there's not a dimes worth of difference between them. It's about a Washington establishment which will not listen to the cries of it's citizenry and the battle rages on.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SESAY: The battle rages on for Roy Moore.

GENOVESE: And it's also the Tea Party versus the establishment and that's been going on for over a year now. That's going to be the battle for the heart and soul of the party. And well, Doug Jones what he said was very true. It's nice to have the two party competition, I think it's wishful thinking. It's not really going to be a characteristic of what happens in Alabama.

This is a one off and if Doug Jones is smart and he's effective and good, he will reach out to Republican voters and he will do some voting on the opposite side, not the Republicans, in order for his own sell preservation. So what remains to be seen is the Republicans after the Roy Moore thing fades if Jones can then come in, fill in that vacuum and solidify his support among some Republicans and moderates.

SESAY: And he's going to need that if he's going to retain that seat next November.

GENOVESE: It's going to be a very tough fight next time around.

SESAY: And again, it's always a pleasure. Thank you.

GENOVESE: Thank you.

SESAY: All right. Well, were not done with announces of Alabama Democrat Doug Jones surprise win over Republican Roy Moore was driven largely by high turn out among a single demographic. You heard Michael reference it, black voters. A stunning 96 percent of black voters went to Jones.

As expected Moore performed well among whites, getting 68 percent there. But, that figure is just short of what he needed to win and when we take a look at the overall turnout in Alabama, broken down by races, you see there on your screens, nearly 1/3 of the electorate was black and that's the biggest thing that carried Jones to victory. Especially when you bare in mind that they only have about 26 percent, of the actual population there, black people that is.

Our next guest, Michael Harriot wrote this in the online magazine "The Root," African-American in Alabama saved American in a victory as unlikely as when Rocky Balboa defeated Ivan Drago in an inspiring documentary, "Rocky IV." Black people did this. Don't let anyone tell you different.

And Michael Harriot joins me now from Birmingham, Alabama. Michael, thank you for joining us. I've been wanting to get you on the show for a long time, so thank you for being with us.

MICHAEL HARRIOT, WRITER AND PODCAST HOST: And thank you for having me.

SESAY: So, you are quite welcome. Judging by that Rocky reference, you did not foresee a win for Doug Jones in Alabama. Am I right?

HARRIOT: Actually, I am one of the few people didn't and I think people forgot -- they were very pretentious mayoral race here and so a lot of African-Americans registered to vote for that mayoral race and they were, again, energized by their senate race. So, in Birmingham, Alabama, which has the biggest population in the

state, and one of the blackest cities of the country, right? So, that is -- when you watched the results last night you saw Moore ahead all night until they started counting the votes in the black cities in Mobile, Alabama and Birmingham, Alabaman and Montgomery and that's what carried him across the finish line.

SESAY: Yes, it certainly did. You wrote in that brilliant article for "The Root," the Democratic Party had left the states party members for dead and didn't think they had a chance and a democrat winning a statewide election is as rare as a good Taylor Swift song. It doesn't happen, ever.

I get the pop music reference, but give us some bigger context, the historic nature of this win. Put it in it's full political context for our international views.

HARRIOT: Right. So, the Republican Party has ruled this state in the south for year, ever since 1948, they have consistently voted republican and so democrats basically left this state, as far as national elections, and (inaudible) for dead.

And they saw the chance to win a senate with Roy -- with Doug Jones and so they pulled resource and hit the ground and I think it's indicative of the fact that the Democratic Party needs to stop chasing, disaffected voters and stick with their base of black people who are the difference makers in every time -- we saw it with Barack Obama, we saw it with Bill Clinton.

Every time the Democratic Party wins a national seat it's because of black voters get the -- they need those black voters any other time except for a national election because the don't that they can win in places like Alabama and this shows that they can.

SESAY: So, Michael you there in Alabama. Again, just remind our viewers, what made black people come out in a non-presidential election year and vote in these numbers? What to you was the galvanizing factor?

HARRIOT: Well, I think Roy Moore was a divisive figure for years in this state, but I think it was more about Doug Jones, right? Birmingham, Alabama, specifically and the state as whole has a long history in the Civil Rights Movement.

And Roy Jones -- I mean Doug Jones, he convicted the -- committed the people -- committed the most heinous crime of terrorism probably in American history when they bombed the 16th Street Baptist Church, he convicted the Klansman who bombed it.

So, he's a local hero in this state and people think that it was just about how bad of a candidate Roy Moore was, but it was more about how good of candidate Doug Jones was, because he's a hero in this state as far as African-American voters are concerned. The worst thing that ever happened in this state, he put the men who committed that crime behind bars. And so it's not just about how bad of a candidate Roy Moore was, not

because he was a pedophile, it's partially because of this, that's what moved the white vote. But the black voters who carried Doug Jones across the line is -- they voted for Doug Jones because he has a long history of civil rights and showing his worth in the African- American community.

SESAY: Well, you mentioned the white votes and the white votes there. So, let me also quote for your article, you said this, do not ever forget that most white people in Alabama voted for Roy Moore, it wasn't even close in the white part of Alabama."

So how about that fact and let's pull out the headline that everyone has been talking about all day that black women led the way in the vote for Doug Jones, 97 percent of them voting for him and that 63 percent of white women voted for Roy Moore. What does that say to you or how do you read that?

HARRIOT: Well, it's funny because if you listen to the news and the national media a lot of people are saying well white women turned away from Roy Moore and there is no significant evidence in the statistics that shows that. They overwhelmingly voted for Roy Moore despite the fact that he is accused of molesting young women.

Despite the fact that there's a national movement to protect young women they still voted for him. So, white voters and white women in particular because I think it was expected for the white male populous to vote for Roy Moore but white women are kind of taking credit for turning away from Roy Moore when the numbers don't show that fact. They overwhelmingly voted for Roy Moore.

SESAY: So, Michael, final question for you and I want to sum up our conversation with this quote that you - this quote from your article. You summed up what black people achieved in Alabama like this, "The only reason the next senator from Alabama isn't a decrepit predator who believed he had the right to control the genitals of women, gay people, transgender people and anyone who didn't worship the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the same exact white manner as he does is black people."

So, I guess my question to you is this, are black people feeling the love after all that they did in Alabama?

HARRIOT: I think they feel a sense of accomplishment. I don't think Alabama is a place where white people or people who didn't support Roy Moore will turn to black people and say thank you. You know the rest of the country but not Billy (ph) in Alabama. I don't think that they did it to get a pat on the back from white America in the first place.

I did it - I think they did it out of a sense of concern for this country and for this state and how it be - what beat the scene (ph) nationally and again because they had a better candidate than the Republican Party.

SESAY: Yes. I mean I agree with you. I don't think anyone was doing it for a pat on the back. I was just wondering whether in Alabama they're getting the recognition for what went down.

HARRIOT: (Inaudible).

SESAY: OK, Michael. Thank you for the reality check. Michael Harriot joining us from Birmingham, Alabama. Thank you so much and you are a great writer and I'm a big fan. So, thank you for joining us.

HARRIOT: Thank you for having me again.

SESAY: Another quick break here and then children going missing, women afraid to go out at night, sick and hungry people desperate for help. The horrors of life inside the Rohingya refugee camp.

2(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ISHA SESAY: Hello, everyone, The Reuters News Agency is calling for the release of two journalists arrested in Myanmar. They were reporting on the military crackdown targeting Rohingya Muslims, which has caused hundreds of thousands to flee to Bangladesh. Myanmar accuses the reporters of illegally acquiring information and planning to share it with foreign media. They face charges under the Official Secrets Act a law from 1923; a conviction carries a maximum prison sentence of 14 years.

Meanwhile, the international Red Cross says life has basically stopped In Myanmar's Rakhine State. About 180,000 Rohingya are still living there in fear. Muslim traders won't reopen their shops and markets because of tensions with the Buddhist community. The Red Cross says Muslims and Buddhists are quote, deeply scared o each other.

Sultana Begum joins us now from Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, she is the manager of regional campaigns and policy on the Rohingya Refugee Crisis for Oxfam, Sultana thank you so much for being with us. One of the initial points that I want to pick up on is the fact that so many of the women and girls who fled from northern Rakhine State over the border to Bangladesh were fleeing from sexual violence. We've heard of these horrific attacks and assaults on women and girls and now we're getting word of sexual violence in the camps themselves. What are we looking at here? How widespread is this problem as you understand it?

SULTANA BEGUM: Thank you Isha, I mean the situation (when) Oxfam has been working in the camp since September and we're providing water and (basic humanitarian assistance) and we're looking at issues such as the safety for women and girls and the stories that they told us about their situation of fleeing Myanmar corroborates a lot of what human rights agencies have said, this systematic use of rape as a weapon of war, seeing their children killed in front of them and so they are very -- they're very traumatized; however, coming (inaudible - technical) they say that they feel a lot safer.

But we recently did an (assessment) which shows that people, women in particular, feel very worried about their safety; they talk about the fear of sexual violence, the camps are dark and not lit at night so basically they're afraid to go out. We've heard about kidnappings and men also say they're staying awake at night because they're worried their children will be kidnapped.

So we don't know how bad this problem is. I think it sounds like it's quite a serious problem, but we need to make sure that at the very least we're providing things like lighting in the camps, that -- and that there is focus on protecting the women and girls in the camp.

SESAY: So Sultana tell us about the physical conditions in the camp right now. We know that they're over crowed; we know that hundreds of thousands of people are there in Cox's Bazar, talk to us about how they are faring in these cramped conditions and the concerns for their health which are just growing by the day.

BEGUM: Yes so you've got -- a situation that you have in Cox's Bazar is now, since August, you've got almost close to a million people in these camps so you have heard over 600,000 people who came recently, but there are also thousands of people; Rohingya refugees who were there from a previous period which shows that this is a cyclical problem, this has been happening over generations and this is the third time in the last 40 years that people have fled violence.

So what do you have in the camps? It's an incredible geography, it was previously jungle and forest land, you have shelters built on hilltops, you've got toilets which are overflowing, you've got limited -- I mean because of the size of the camp, this has now become the world's largest refugee camp. We're really struggling to get the basics to people, people still really need more food; more water, more shelters and we're getting closer to monsoon season.

So in some ways it's a race against time, but we're struggling with funding; international donors simply haven't given the money that's needed to support this crisis so there's still a 280 million shortfall in getting assistance in the next few months. So we really need international governments to really dig deep and support this crisis.

SESAY: And what do you think can be said, or what image can be shown that would change the mind of international donors? I mean this is a long running crisis now, we have being seeing these pictures of over- crowding and suffering for months and yet the money's still not coming in so what will make the difference?

BEGUM: I think we need to work on numerous fronts. On the one hand, this is the largest refugee crisis or the fastest refugee crisis since the Rwandian refugee crisis back in the '90s. I think in terms of the scale of what's happened, you know, human rights organizations have documented the people who have fled have fled systematic crimes against humanity, (inaudible) use of the weapons of war, they are stateless. These people do not have any citizenship, they're discriminated against. They don't have any right. So Bangladesh has done an incredible thing in opening its doors so it's now up to the world to support them and Bangladesh itself is a very poor country. But we also need the international, political solutions to this to pressure Myanmar to create the safe conditions needed for people to be able to return to their homes on (inaudible).

You know we've spoken to refugees and they are very clear. They want to be able to go back to their homes but they can't because they're scared, they're traumatized, and they need the root causes of this crisis to be addressed and that's what we need to get to.

SESAY: Yes, absolutely. This cannot be the future for all these people-close to a million people living in such awful conditions with a monsoon coming. (Inaudible) joining us there from (inaudible). We appreciate it. Thank you so much for the update and the insight.

UNKNOWN FEMALE: Thank you for having me.

SESAY: Now we're following a deadly suicide bombing in Somalia. The attacker dressed in an officer's uniform (inaudible) near the police academy in the capital, Mogadishu during a morning parade rehearsal. Officials say at least 13 police officers were killed and another 15 wounded, and that death toll could rise. The terrorist group Al- Shabaab claimed responsibility. We will bring you more details as they become available.

Well the Saudi led air strike in the capital of Yemen killed dozens of people on Wednesday. Houthi defense official tells CNN at least 35 people died in the attack on the military police facility. Another 20 people are missing. Houthi officials say the buildings held hundreds of prisoners at the time. For the past two years Saudi Arabia has been leading a coalition against Iranian backed Houthi rebels in Yemen. The Trump Administration says it will provide evidence on Thursday that missiles recently fired into Saudi Arabia from Yemen were supplied to the Houthis by Iran.

While two of Asia's top leaders will soon sit down to discuss the North Korean nuclear crisis, what to expect from those talks next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SESAY: ISHA SESAY, HOST OF CNN NEWSROOM LIVE FROM LOS ANGELES: This is the

senior news room live from Los Angeles. Ahead this hour; Alabama Senate Candidate Roy Moore releasing a new video, still not conceding he lost, while the rest of Donald Trump's party struggles to move on.

Refugee camps swelling, monsoon season coming, children going missing, women fearful of sexual violence, the plights of the Rohingya growing even more dire. And more women coming forward claiming they were raped by the godfather of hip hop music, Mogul Russell Simmons.

Hello and welcome (ph) to our viewers around the world. I am Isha Sesay. News from L.A. starts right now.

One day after a bruising defeat in Alabama's Senate race, U.S. President Donald Trump is one step closer to his first major legislative victory. House and Senate Republicans have a tentative agreement on a tax reform plan. The president hopes Congress is only days away from passing what he calls "A giant tax cut for the middle class."

(VIDEO BEGINS)

DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: If Congress sends me a bill before Christmas, the IRS - this is just out, this is breaking news, has just confirmed that Americans will see lower taxes and bigger paychecks beginning in February, just two short months away.

(VIDEO ENDS)

SESAY: While President Trump is downplaying the humiliating Republican loss in the deep red state of Alabama, Mr. Trump's bet on the wrong candidate twice. First, Luther Strange in primary, then Roy Moore in the special election. The president says some Republicans are happy Moore lost but he would have liked the seat to remain Republican.

The Democrat Winner, Doug Jones, says President Trump called him Wednesday.

(VIDEO BEGINS)

DOUG JONES, SENATORIAL CANDIDATE: Now, he - it was a very gracious call. I very much appreciated it. He congratulated me on the race that we won. He congratulated me and my staff on the way and the manner in which we handled this campaign and went forward. And we talked about finding that common ground, to work together. And he invited me over to the White House just as soon as I get up there.

So it's a very nice phone call, very pleasant phone call and I appreciated him very much, reaching out to me.

SESAY: Meantime in the Russia investigation, Donald Trump Jr. once again facing questions on Capitol Hill. He had no comment as he left the meeting with staffers from the Senate Intelligence Committee.

And the man overseeing Rob Mueller's investigation is defending the special counsel. Some Republicans claim the probe is politically biased, after an FBI agent was removed for sending anti-Trump text messages. But Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein says Mueller is an ideal choice for the task and that no one has asked him to fire Mueller.

(VIDEO BEGINS)

UNKNOWN: If you were ordered today to fire Mr. Mueller, what would you do?

ROD ROSENSTEIN, DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL: As explained previously, I would follow the regulation. If there were good cause, I would act. If there were no good cause, I would not.

UNKNOWN: And you've seen no good cause so far?

ROSENSTEIN: Correct.

UNKNOWN: Thank you.

(VIDEO ENDS)

SESAY: Busy, busy day in U.S. politics. For more on all of this, Political Analyst Michael Cernovich joins us. Now, Michael, I'm so pleased you're here. MICHAEL CERNOVICH, POLITICAL ANALYST: Good to be here.

SESAY: There's so much to discuss. Let's start with Alabama, shall we, and that shock win for Doug Jones. I mean, no one can forget, and it is the headline, that Alabama is a deep red state. The first time the Democrats have won a Senate seat there in over two decades. Political watchers saying this is nothing short than one giant self- inflicted wound on the part of the GOP. How do you see it?

CERNOVICH: Well, I think you can sum it up in two words; Moore, Trump. Moore was a terrible candidate. The Republicans should have won this state easily going away. Moore was toxic. And then Donald Trump - there's a backlash against Trump, I think. He wants to be seen as the man who moved the machinery and moves the pieces on the chess board. But he may very well be just a paper tiger right now, might even be toxic to some Republicans.

And so I think it was both the Moore and the Trump effect that allowed the Democrats to steal a seat they should never have won.

SESAY: OK. You say this was a question of Moore and Trump. Others are saying this is about Steve Bannon. Steve Bannon who championed Roy Moore, Steve Bannon who's been at the helm of a front to take on establishment Republicans. Listen to what Congressman Steve King from - Peter King, rather, from New York, had to say. Take a listen.

(VIDEO BEGINS)

PETER KING, CONGRESSMAN, NY-R: This is not even posed (ph) as a political issue, almost as a moral issue. This guy does not belong on the national stage. He looks like some disheveled drunk that wandered onto the political stage.

(VIDEO ENDS)

SESAY: Well, not holding back, letting rip, the day after a monumental loss. But is Steve Bannon fatally wounded?

MICHAEL GENOVESE, POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, Donald Trump brought him into the process. Donald Trump has been associated with him now since the campaign and while they've separated in terms of Bannon leaving the Whitehouse. They still work together, they still communicate a lot together and Bannon is a side of Trump that wants to tear down the machinery, wants to tear down the system.

And that part of Trump was fed into the Moore team and the Moore campaign and it fell flat. Bannon was severely wounded in this because the mainstream Republicans would love to see him pushed out. And this is a way for them to just sort of nudge him away.

SESAY: The Democrats obviously see this win as something completely different. For them this was an issue of hard work. Take a listen to Doug Jones and in how he described the effort on Wednesday.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DOUG JONES, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: We knocked on 300 thousand doors. We rang 1.2 million phones across this state. We knew what we were doing, we knew the importance of minority votes and we reached out. And I think they responded, but I also believe this. I think we had a lot of support from the leadership in the African American community.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SESAY: So, talk to me about that. How he got such large numbers of African American vow and how he really demonstrated a muscular turn out. You know get out the vote operations, something we haven't seen from the Democrats recently when it isn't a case of a presidential election.

GENOVESE: Right, well I think everything Doug Jones said is true, but not quite as robust as he would like to make it seem. They were very well organized they did have a great get up the vote drive. They outspent more significantly some people say almost five to one.

African Americans came out in record numbers even more so than 2012 for Barak Obama. So, I mean if anything it's African American vote. It's also educated white women who turned against the Republicans. But I think as good of a campaign as Doug Jones ran it was the bad campaign and the bad candidate of war.

SESAY: So if anything if you had a stronger candidate in Roy Moore you think it might have been a different outcome given the demographics of Alabama?

GENOVESE: I have no doubt, Alabama is a red state. It's going to remain a red state. Doug Moore won a narrow victory in a red state and so what you're going to see and Donald Trump did a very smart thing in calling to congratulate Doug Jones.

What you're going to see is that Jones has to move to the right politically. He can't be seen as a fixture in the Democratic Party, can't be seen as the puppet of the leadership. He's going to be able to vote a few times here and there with Donald Trump.

SESAY: Yes.

GENOVESE: And Donald Trump realizes that and that's why reaching out a hand of friendship to Doug Jones makes a lot of sense for the President.

SESAY: Yes, well Doug Jones clearly looking forward. I want to play what - a little bit more on what he had to say and in terms of what this means for Alabama, let's take a listen. Then I also want us listen to what Roy Moore has had to say in recent hours.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DOUG JONES: This state is going to be progressed as far as we can because beginning today, beginning with this election I believe we're on a road to having a competitive two party state without one party domination. And I think that - that helps every state if you look around this country. And that's what I want to see, I want to see that with the Democrats I want to see that with the Republicans.

It doesn't help anybody to see one - it doesn't help a state, it doesn't help a country to see one major political party at civil wars with itself.

ROY MOORE: This election was tainted by over $50 million from outside groups who want to retain power in their own corrupt ideology. No longer is this about Republican or Democrat control. It's truly been said there's not a dimes worth of difference between them. It's about a Washington establishment which will not listen to the cries of it's citizenry and the battle rages on.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SESAY: The battle rages on for Roy Moore.

GENOVESE: And it's also the Tea Party versus the establishment and that's been going on for over a year now. That's going to be the battle for the heart and soul of the party. And well, Doug Jones what he said was very true. It's nice to have the two party competition, I think it's wishful thinking. It's not really going to be a characteristic of what happens in Alabama.

This is a one off and if Doug Jones is smart and he's effective and good, he will reach out to Republican voters and he will do some voting on the opposite side, not the Republicans, in order for his own sell preservation. So what remains to be seen is the Republicans after the Roy Moore thing fades if Jones can then come in, fill in that vacuum and solidify his support among some Republicans and moderates.

SESAY: And he's going to need that if he's going to retain that seat next November.

GENOVESE: It's going to be a very tough fight next time around.

SESAY: And again, it's always a pleasure. Thank you.

GENOVESE: Thank you.

SESAY: All right. Well, were not done with announces of Alabama Democrat Doug Jones surprise win over Republican Roy Moore was driven largely by high turn out among a single demographic. You heard Michael reference it, black voters. A stunning 96 percent of black voters went to Jones.

As expected Moore performed well among whites, getting 68 percent there. But, that figure is just short of what he needed to win and when we take a look at the overall turnout in Alabama, broken down by races, you see there on your screens, nearly 1/3 of the electorate was black and that's the biggest thing that carried Jones to victory. Especially when you bare in mind that they only have about 26 percent, of the actual population there, black people that is. Our next guest, Michael Harriot wrote this in the online magazine "The

Root," African-American in Alabama saved American in a victory as unlikely as when Rocky Balboa defeated Ivan Drago in an inspiring documentary, "Rocky IV." Black people did this. Don't let anyone tell you different.

And Michael Harriot joins me now from Birmingham, Alabama. Michael, thank you for joining us. I've been wanting to get you on the show for a long time, so thank you for being with us.

MICHAEL HARRIOT, WRITER AND PODCAST HOST: And thank you for having me.

SESAY: So, you are quite welcome. Judging by that Rocky reference, you did not foresee a win for Doug Jones in Alabama. Am I right?

HARRIOT: Actually, I am one of the few people didn't and I think people forgot -- they were very pretentious mayoral race here and so a lot of African-Americans registered to vote for that mayoral race and they were, again, energized by their senate race.

So, in Birmingham, Alabama, which has the biggest population in the state, and one of the blackest cities of the country, right? So, that is -- when you watched the results last night you saw Moore ahead all night until they started counting the votes in the black cities in Mobile, Alabama and Birmingham, Alabaman and Montgomery and that's what carried him across the finish line.

SESAY: Yes, it certainly did. You wrote in that brilliant article for "The Root," the Democratic Party had left the states party members for dead and didn't think they had a chance and a democrat winning a statewide election is as rare as a good Taylor Swift song. It doesn't happen, ever.

I get the pop music reference, but give us some bigger context, the historic nature of this win. Put it in it's full political context for our international views.

HARRIOT: Right. So, the Republican Party has ruled this state in the south for year, ever since 1948, they have consistently voted republican and so democrats basically left this state, as far as national elections, and (inaudible) for dead.

And they saw the chance to win a senate with Roy -- with Doug Jones and so they pulled resource and hit the ground and I think it's indicative of the fact that the Democratic Party needs to stop chasing, disaffected voters and stick with their base of black people who are the difference makers in every time -- we saw it with Barack Obama, we saw it with Bill Clinton.

Every time the Democratic Party wins a national seat it's because of black voters get the -- they need those black voters any other time except for a national election because the don't that they can win in places like Alabama and this shows that they can.

SESAY: So, Michael you there in Alabama. Again, just remind our viewers, what made black people come out in a non-presidential election year and vote in these numbers? What to you was the galvanizing factor?

HARRIOT: Well, I think Roy Moore was a divisive figure for years in this state, but I think it was more about Doug Jones, right? Birmingham, Alabama, specifically and the state as whole has a long history in the Civil Rights Movement.

And Roy Jones -- I mean Doug Jones, he convicted the -- committed the people -- committed the most heinous crime of terrorism probably in American history when they bombed the 16th Street Baptist Church, he convicted the Klansman who bombed it.

So, he's a local hero in this state and people think that it was just about how bad of a candidate Roy Moore was, but it was more about how good of candidate Doug Jones was, because he's a hero in this state as far as African-American voters are concerned. The worst thing that ever happened in this state, he put the men who committed that crime behind bars.

And so it's not just about how bad of a candidate Roy Moore was, not because he was a pedophile, it's partially because of this, that's what moved the white vote. But the black voters who carried Doug Jones across the line is -- they voted for Doug Jones because he has a long history of civil rights and showing his worth in the African- American community.

SESAY: Well, you mentioned the white votes and the white votes there. So, let me also quote for your article, you said this, do not ever forget that most white people in Alabama voted for Roy Moore, it wasn't even close in the white part of Alabama."

So how about that fact and let's pull out the headline that everyone has been talking about all day that black women led the way in the vote for Doug Jones, 97 percent of them voting for him and that 63 percent of white women voted for Roy Moore. What does that say to you or how do you read that?

HARRIOT: Well, it's funny because if you listen to the news and the national media a lot of people are saying well white women turned away from Roy Moore and there is no significant evidence in the statistics that shows that. They overwhelmingly voted for Roy Moore despite the fact that he is accused of molesting young women.

Despite the fact that there's a national movement to protect young women they still voted for him. So, white voters and white women in particular because I think it was expected for the white male populous to vote for Roy Moore but white women are kind of taking credit for turning away from Roy Moore when the numbers don't show that fact. They overwhelmingly voted for Roy Moore.

SESAY: So, Michael, final question for you and I want to sum up our conversation with this quote that you - this quote from your article. You summed up what black people achieved in Alabama like this, "The only reason the next senator from Alabama isn't a decrepit predator who believed he had the right to control the genitals of women, gay people, transgender people and anyone who didn't worship the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the same exact white manner as he does is black people."

So, I guess my question to you is this, are black people feeling the love after all that they did in Alabama?

HARRIOT: I think they feel a sense of accomplishment. I don't think Alabama is a place where white people or people who didn't support Roy Moore will turn to black people and say thank you. You know the rest of the country but not Billy (ph) in Alabama. I don't think that they did it to get a pat on the back from white America in the first place.

I did it - I think they did it out of a sense of concern for this country and for this state and how it be - what beat the scene (ph) nationally and again because they had a better candidate than the Republican Party.

SESAY: Yes. I mean I agree with you. I don't think anyone was doing it for a pat on the back. I was just wondering whether in Alabama they're getting the recognition for what went down.

HARRIOT: (Inaudible).

SESAY: OK, Michael. Thank you for the reality check. Michael Harriot joining us from Birmingham, Alabama. Thank you so much and you are a great writer and I'm a big fan. So, thank you for joining us.

HARRIOT: Thank you for having me again.

SESAY: Another quick break here and then children going missing, women afraid to go out at night, sick and hungry people desperate for help. The horrors of life inside the Rohingya refugee camp.

2(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ISHA SESAY: Hello, everyone, The Reuters News Agency is calling for the release of two journalists arrested in Myanmar. They were reporting on the military crackdown targeting Rohingya Muslims, which has caused hundreds of thousands to flee to Bangladesh. Myanmar accuses the reporters of illegally acquiring information and planning to share it with foreign media. They face charges under the Official Secrets Act a law from 1923; a conviction carries a maximum prison sentence of 14 years.

Meanwhile, the international Red Cross says life has basically stopped In Myanmar's Rakhine State. About 180,000 Rohingya are still living there in fear. Muslim traders won't reopen their shops and markets because of tensions with the Buddhist community. The Red Cross says Muslims and Buddhists are quote, deeply scared o each other.

Sultana Begum joins us now from Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, she is the manager of regional campaigns and policy on the Rohingya Refugee Crisis for Oxfam, Sultana thank you so much for being with us. One of the initial points that I want to pick up on is the fact that so many of the women and girls who fled from northern Rakhine State over the border to Bangladesh were fleeing from sexual violence. We've heard of these horrific attacks and assaults on women and girls and now we're getting word of sexual violence in the camps themselves. What are we looking at here? How widespread is this problem as you understand it?

SULTANA BEGUM: Thank you Isha, I mean the situation (when) Oxfam has been working in the camp since September and we're providing water and (basic humanitarian assistance) and we're looking at issues such as the safety for women and girls and the stories that they told us about their situation of fleeing Myanmar corroborates a lot of what human rights agencies have said, this systematic use of rape as a weapon of war, seeing their children killed in front of them and so they are very -- they're very traumatized; however, coming (inaudible - technical) they say that they feel a lot safer.

But we recently did an (assessment) which shows that people, women in particular, feel very worried about their safety; they talk about the fear of sexual violence, the camps are dark and not lit at night so basically they're afraid to go out. We've heard about kidnappings and men also say they're staying awake at night because they're worried their children will be kidnapped.

So we don't know how bad this problem is. I think it sounds like it's quite a serious problem, but we need to make sure that at the very least we're providing things like lighting in the camps, that -- and that there is focus on protecting the women and girls in the camp.

SESAY: So Sultana tell us about the physical conditions in the camp right now. We know that they're over crowed; we know that hundreds of thousands of people are there in Cox's Bazar, talk to us about how they are faring in these cramped conditions and the concerns for their health which are just growing by the day.

BEGUM: Yes so you've got -- a situation that you have in Cox's Bazar is now, since August, you've got almost close to a million people in these camps so you have heard over 600,000 people who came recently, but there are also thousands of people; Rohingya refugees who were there from a previous period which shows that this is a cyclical problem, this has been happening over generations and this is the third time in the last 40 years that people have fled violence.

So what do you have in the camps? It's an incredible geography, it was previously jungle and forest land, you have shelters built on hilltops, you've got toilets which are overflowing, you've got limited -- I mean because of the size of the camp, this has now become the world's largest refugee camp. We're really struggling to get the basics to people, people still really need more food; more water, more shelters and we're getting closer to monsoon season.

So in some ways it's a race against time, but we're struggling with funding; international donors simply haven't given the money that's needed to support this crisis so there's still a 280 million shortfall in getting assistance in the next few months. So we really need international governments to really dig deep and support this crisis.

SESAY: And what do you think can be said, or what image can be shown that would change the mind of international donors? I mean this is a long running crisis now, we have being seeing these pictures of over- crowding and suffering for months and yet the money's still not coming in so what will make the difference?

BEGUM: I think we need to work on numerous fronts. On the one hand, this is the largest refugee crisis or the fastest refugee crisis since the Rwandian refugee crisis back in the '90s. I think in terms of the scale of what's happened, you know, human rights organizations have documented the people who have fled have fled systematic crimes against humanity, (inaudible) use of the weapons of war, they are stateless. These people do not have any citizenship, they're discriminated against. They don't have any right. So Bangladesh has done an incredible thing in opening its doors so it's now up to the world to support them and Bangladesh itself is a very poor country. But we also need the international, political solutions to this to pressure Myanmar to create the safe conditions needed for people to be able to return to their homes on (inaudible).

You know we've spoken to refugees and they are very clear. They want to be able to go back to their homes but they can't because they're scared, they're traumatized, and they need the root causes of this crisis to be addressed and that's what we need to get to.

SESAY: Yes, absolutely. This cannot be the future for all these people-close to a million people living in such awful conditions with a monsoon coming. (Inaudible) joining us there from (inaudible). We appreciate it. Thank you so much for the update and the insight.

UNKNOWN FEMALE: Thank you for having me.

SESAY: Now we're following a deadly suicide bombing in Somalia. The attacker dressed in an officer's uniform (inaudible) near the police academy in the capital, Mogadishu during a morning parade rehearsal. Officials say at least 13 police officers were killed and another 15 wounded, and that death toll could rise. The terrorist group Al- Shabaab claimed responsibility. We will bring you more details as they become available.

Well the Saudi led air strike in the capital of Yemen killed dozens of people on Wednesday. Houthi defense official tells CNN at least 35 people died in the attack on the military police facility. Another 20 people are missing. Houthi officials say the buildings held hundreds of prisoners at the time. For the past two years Saudi Arabia has been leading a coalition against Iranian backed Houthi rebels in Yemen. The Trump Administration says it will provide evidence on Thursday that missiles recently fired into Saudi Arabia from Yemen were supplied to the Houthis by Iran.

While two of Asia's top leaders will soon sit down to discuss the North Korean nuclear crisis, what to expect from those talks next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SESAY: Hello everyone. You are watching CNN Newsroom live from Los Angeles. I'm Isha Sesay.