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Trump Lawyers Say The President Can't Obstruct Justice; Syrian President To Meet Kim Jong-Un In Pyongyang; Woman Drives Onto Baseball Field, Kills Man; Arizona Shooting Deaths; DNA From Tissue And Car Door Led To Golden State Killer's Arrest; Crisis In Puerto Rico Aired 6-7a ET

Aired June 3, 2018 - 06:00   ET




ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: President Trump through his lawyers arguing there's no way he obstructed justice.

JAY SEKULOW, ATTORNEY FOR PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: The president didn't sign off on anything.


CABRERA: This is the first time the president's attorneys have acknowledged that Trump dictated the statement.

PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Mr. Trump was, obviously, lying to his lawyers if the lawyers are now being honest about what went down.


ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY WEEKEND with Victor Blackwell and Christi Paul.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning to you.

And elite letter to "The New York Times," President Trump's lawyers argue there's no way he obstructed justice essentially because he is the president.

CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: We will have more on that in a moment.

But also this hour we have breaking news. Kim Jong-un's growing guest list. Syria's president -- yes, Syria is the latest world leader to court the North Korean dictator.

BLACKWELL: Also an unfolding investigation police say a psychiatrist in JonBenet Ramsey case is among four people murdered in Arizona.

PAUL: And from red carpet to perp walk disgraced movie tycoon Harvey Weinstein staring down charges of rape and forced oral sex is back in court this week. So grateful to have you here early on this Sunday. Now President Trump's lawyers say their clients cannot obstruct justice because he can't obstruct himself, essentially. That he in charge of all federal investigations.

BLACKWELL: OK. So according to "The New York Times," Trump's lawyers made their case in a letter to Robert Mueller's office, this was back in January, arguing their client should not have to sit down with the special counsel.

PAUL: They say as president, President Trump can grant pardons, fire an FBI director or end an investigation -- quote -- "At any time and for any reason."

BLACKWELL: All right. Joining us now live is CNN White House reporter Sarah Westwood. So what are you hearing when you're learning about the fallout of this letter now being published?

SARAH WESTWOOD, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Victor, this letter written by two of the president's lawyers at the time Jay Sekulow and John Dowd represents a remarkable attempt to assert broad executive privilege over parts of the Russian investigation. It was hand delivered to the special counsel's team in January and it lays out a detailed argument about why President Trump should not have to submit to a subpoena if Mueller decides to compel Trump's testimony.

They argue why Trump did not and according to them cannot obstruct justice because of his constitutional authority over the Justice Department. Obviously that is an assertion that is likely to be challenged if Mueller uncovers evidence of obstruction or decides to press ahead with the subpoena.

Now the letter does shed some light on the preparation of a misleading statement the president's son Donald Trump Jr. issued last year after his meeting with the Russian lawyer in Trump Tower came to light. In the letter Dowd and Sekulow write, the president dictated a short accurate response to the "New York Times" on behalf of his son, Donald Trump Jr.

Now that statement you'll recall describes the meeting as one primary focused on adoption but we now know that 2016 meeting was presented to Donald Trump Jr. as an effort by the Russians to pass on dirt about Hillary Clinton. Trump's attorney Jay Sekulow and the White House has repeatedly denied the president had anything to do with writing this statement.

Take a listen.


SEKULOW: That was written by Donald Trump Jr. and I'm sure within consultation with his lawyer. So that wasn't written by the president. The president didn't sign off on anything. The president was not involved in the drafting of the statement and did not issue the statement. It came from Donald Trump Jr.

HUCKABEE SANDERS: He certainly didn't dictate but like I said he weighed in, offered suggestion like any father would do.


WESTWOOD: Now the arguments Trump's lawyers laid out in this letter are ones we have been hearing them make privately for months. CNN reported on this letter last month but we're now getting a detailed look at how the president's lawyers are pushing back against Mueller -- Victor.

PAUL: All right. Sarah Westwood, appreciate it so much. Thank you.

BLACKWELL: All right. Here is the key part from that letter from Trump's lawyers.

"The president's actions here by virtue of his position as the chief law enforcement officer could neither constitutionally nor legally constitute obstruction because that would amount to him obstructing himself, and he could if he wish terminate the inquiry or even exercise his pardon power if he so desired."

Joining us now to discuss Joey Jackson, CNN legal analyst and criminal defense attorney. Joey, good morning to you.


BLACKWELL: The validity of that argument, your take.

JACKSON: My take is that it's not valid at all and I think it's preposterous, quite frankly.

Let's start here, right? The fact is the basic proposition is that no person is above the law. President being such a person.

In that regard, in the event that the president has the every constitutional, executive power whatsoever the fact is that you have to operate within the bounds of the law. Now specifics. The fact is that, yes, the president has broad constitutional authority but in the event that you carry out that authority with a corrupt intention, which is the open question in my view, was it corrupt or was it not, that's why we have the special counsel, but if you have a corrupt intention then it's problematic.


So, for example, if you fire someone but you're paid to do it, right? Because you're accepting money for firing someone that is a problem, right?

In the event that you're appointing somebody, right? We're talking about Rod Blagojevich. Remember him, Illinois appointing senators for money, it's his authority from a state perspective, just making an analogy, to make that appointment. However, you took money to do it.

So he had every right as the governor to make an appointment but taking money and being bribed to do it makes it, although you have the authority, unlawful improper. Let's go back to Trump. The fact the matter is if he takes actions, notwithstanding his constitutional authority and he has a corrupt intention it becomes problematic, it becomes legally offensive and as a result of that it becomes obstruction.

Last point, the whole reason the special counsel want to speak to the president is to determine what his intent is. Only the president can talk to the issue of what he was thinking when he acted in a certain manner, that's the relevance of the discussion. For you to tell me, Mr. President, what was on in your mind when you took certain actions.

In the events special counsel get to the issue of corrupt intent they get to the issue of obstruction. That simple. The president, notwithstanding his constitutional authority can be held accountable like everyone else in the event he takes illegal action.

BLACKWELL: The lawyers make it even plain here where they write, "A president can also order the termination of an investigation by the Justice Department or FBI at any time and for any reason."

You already brought the point of -- potentially for corrupt reason and your belief that that argument is invalid. Based on the assertions made in this letter, do you believe that a court battle over a potential subpoena of the president is more likely now?

JACKSON: You know, I really do, Victor. And this is why. The fact is that it remains an open question whether you can subpoena the president.

Now people may be yelling at the TV saying what about Nixon? That's not true. What about Nixon?

He was forced to turn over the tapes. As it related to Nixon we are talking about documentary evidence and the Supreme Court has answered that question and has said where the president possesses documentary evidence and that evidence is otherwise valid and relevant to an investigation it must be turned over.

Now let's get from 74 and let's go and look what happened in the era of Bill Clinton in the '90s. What happened there is the president was subpoenaed by special counsel at that time Mr. Starr to appear before the grand jury. It was never litigated because Bill Clinton and his team decided to voluntarily cooperate in that regard, appear before the grand jury, not in the grand jury but from the White House via tape with lawyers around.

So it is still an open question as to whether or not the president could be compelled physically, his person, not documents, not tapes, you know, not records, his person. It is an open question as to whether that is lawful proper and it could very well be tested in this case.

One other point, Victor.


JACKSON: In the event, for example, the president is compelled to appear before the grand jury the president doesn't have to say anything. We started this conversation by me saying the president is not above the law. The president is not beneath the law.

If you or I are called to testify in front of a grand jury we could say, I actually -- what I do is assert my Fifth Amendment privilege not to testify. He has a Fifth Amendment right not to say a thing on the grounds it may incriminate him.

So in the event the court decides, Mr. President, you have to appear the president can also stay mum and not answer any questions which could be a political issue but from a legal perspective that question has definitely been answered and the answer is you don't need to say a word in the event that it may incriminate you.

BLACKWELL: All right. Joey Jackson, thanks so much.

We're going to dig deeper into this letter that was published by "The New York Times" throughout the show and thank you for helping us to understand it.

Be sure to tune in to "STATE OF THE UNION" with Jake Tapper 9:00 a.m. eastern. He's joined today by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Canada Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland.

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

PAUL: Breaking news this hour. Another world leader apparently is lining up to meet North Korea's dictator. The North Korean news agency says overnight that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad will be meeting with Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang.

BLACKWELL: Kim has already met with the Russian foreign minister and received an invitation to see Vladimir Putin in Moscow.

He held a surprise summit with China's leader, Xi Jinping, a few weeks ago and he has been talking South Korea's Moon Jae-in. All of this is ahead of an historic summit with President Trump in nine days now.

CNN international correspondent Alexandra field is live in Seoul for us.

So what does now this visit from Syria's president mean?


ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hey there, Christi and Victor. Good morning to you.

Certainly this is every indication that Kim Jong-un is making another effort to sure up his closest relationships in advance of this historic sit-down with U.S. President Donald Trump. North Korean state news reporting that this meeting will actually happen in Pyongyang. (INAUDIBLE) also will travel to the North Korean capital to come face to face with Kim Jong-un.

They aren't saying when it will happen but they did quote Assad as saying the following. Listen to this.

"The world welcomes the remarkable events in the Korean Peninsula brought about the outstanding political caliber and wise leadership of Kim Jong-un. I'm sure he will achieve the final victory and realize the unification of Korea."

Strong words there that they are quoting from Assad. Again, these are two leaders who haven't met. They have exchanged messages of support and congratulations for one another.

These are two countries that have had close relations for decades now. Assad's father, of course, met with the North Korean founder, Kim Jong-un's grandfather, back in the 1970s and I'll remind everyone that it was just this winter that the U.N. released a reporter citing what they called evidence of cooperation on chemical weapons and ballistic missiles between Syria and North Korea.

That was part of the sweeping report on the enforcements of sanctions against North Korea. Speaking of the sanctions. The secretary of defense, Jim Mattis, was in the region this weekend assuring the allies out here, really the world at large of those sanctions against North Korea will be maintained even in the run-up to this meeting. Listen to how he put it.


JAMES MATTIS, DEFENSE SECRETARY: We will welcome the Panmunjom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification of the Korean Peninsula. That was announced in April. We can anticipate it best a bumpy road to the negotiations.


FIELD: "A bumpy road." Certainly taking a different tone than President Trump and certainly taking a tough tone. Some strong rhetoric from Secretary Mattis there assuring that these sanctions will remain in place until the North Korea can take verifiable steps toward complete, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization.

The administration hasn't yet said how that will be accomplished. We have the secretary of state saying earlier this week that at this point they're not going to talk about the shapes or elements of a potential deal but certainly President Trump being optimistic about this meeting while at the same time lowering expectations saying that this would be a get to know you meeting with Kim Jong-un, perhaps the first of several more meetings -- Victor, Christi.

BLACKWELL: OK. Which is nine days away. Alexandra Field for us. Thank you so much.

PAUL: Still ahead. I have to tell you about this terrifying moment during a little league baseball game. Cell phone video shows a woman driving her car onto a baseball field and one man died.

BLACKWELL: Plus, police revealed how they finally caught the alleged Golden State killer by collecting his DNA while he was shopping. Details on how they did this coming up.

PAUL: Also disgraced movie tycoon Harvey Weinstein is back in court this week. How the sex assault case against him is starting to unfold.



BLACKWELL: Authorities in Maine are trying to figure out why a woman drove onto a little league baseball game field on Friday and killed a 68-year-old man. The players scattered as the car you see here in the cell phone video swerved across the field.

PAUL: Police say the driver -- look at this. I mean, you can just hear people. It was horrible.

Police say the driver raced to the main gate then and sped away from that scene after she hit a man who witnesses say was trying to protect children.


MARK STEWART, WITNESS: We were just trying to close the gate so she couldn't get out because you had the little kids across the field. So thankfully, you know, that was -- she couldn't get out basically until she slammed through that gate and, like I said he had nowhere to go.


PAUL: Authorities say 68-year-old Douglas Parkhurst died from his injuries. Police later arrested a 51-year-old woman and charged her with manslaughter. Little League officials say none of those little kids were hurt.

A manhunt under way this morning in Arizona as police are searching for the gunman behind the shooting deaths of four people near Phoenix. Now police believe at least three of these are connected. Among the victims is a forensic psychiatrist who worked on the JonBenet Ramsey case.

BLACKWELL: CNN national correspondent Nick Watt has the latest on the investigation for us.

NICK WATT, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Four people shot and killed in just a little over 24 hours here in the Phoenix-Scottsdale area. Police say that they believe the first three victims are somehow connected. They are trying to figure out right now if the fourth victim is also connected.

Now the first person was shot and killed Thursday evening around 5:30. Steven Pitt, a renowned forensic psychiatrist who was involved in the JonBenet Ramsey case and the Columbine shooting he was shot as he was leaving his office.

Now witnesses told police that they heard raised voices and arguments of sorts, then gunshots. Pitt died on the sidewalk.

Friday afternoon, a little after 2:00 p.m., a woman who had been shot in the head was seeking help from a people in a bus stopped at an intersection. She was taken to the hospital where she later died and police say that they followed a trail of blood into a nearby office. It was a lawyer's office and in there they found another woman shot dead.

Both of those women were paralegals at a family law firm. Now the fourth victim was very early Saturday morning. Police have not named that victim yet but they are trying to figure out if he is connected to the other three victims.

Now, they have released an artist sketch of the suspect and that was taken from witness testimony from the first shooting. He is a white bald man, bulky man, middle-aged man, and police are trying to track him down. We still do not know the motive why he may have killed three of these people and perhaps the fourth.

Nick Watt, CNN, Scottsdale, Arizona.


BLACKWELL: It was DNA from a tissue and a car door that finally led to the arrest of the suspected Golden State killer. Now the arrest and search warrant documents have recently been unsealed and the details explain how detectives pieced together this case against Joseph DeAngelo, a former police officer. According to the warrant, in mid April, investigators followed DeAngelo to a Hobby Lobby, I should say, this was in Roseville, California.

PAUL: Now apparently while he shopped, police gathered DNA from his car door handle in the parking lot and days later, investigators collected another sample of his DNA. That from a discarded tissue in a trash can outside his home.

Now the new samples were tested and matched crime scene DNA from decades ago. The 72-year-old is suspected of committed at least a dozen killings, roughly 50 rapes between 1976 and 1986. He has entered a plea to the -- or he has not entered a plea yet to the murder charges.

Still to come. Eight months after Hurricane Maria, thousands of residents in Puerto Rico still do not have power.

And hurricane season has officially begun now. So part of the question here is how prepared is the island and the government this year? We are going to talk about that.

BLACKWELL: News makers, hard hitting interviews. Do not miss "CUOMO PRIME TIME" CNN week nights 9:00 p.m. eastern starting tomorrow night.



PAUL: So glad to have with us with here. I'm Christi Paul.

BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell.

New data from Puerto Rico's government shows that there were 1,400 more deaths in the months after Hurricane Maria compared to the previous year. Now this comes right after a Harvard study that put the number of deaths as a result of Maria at more than 4,600. That's 70 times higher than the official government count of 64.

PAUL: CNN correspondent Leyla Santiago is in Puerto Rico and shows us what is happening there now.


LEYLA SANTIAGO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Thousands of shoes have been placed at the Capitol Building in San Juan. Puerto Rican coming here and raising awareness of specific people who died, they believe, because of Hurricane Maria.

I spoke to this family. I'll kind of come down here so you can see. This is Doroteo (ph) Diaz (ph) Rodriguez (ph). And his family told me that he had medical conditions that worsened significantly after Hurricane Maria giving them the lack of access to medical care as well as lack of power.

His son wrote here we will love you always. And he is number 1580. Again, there are more than 2,000 shoes that have been placed right here at the Capitol Building. A lot of hugs, a lot of tears.

The organizer told me this is a funeral and they consider this the cemetery. I spoke to one woman who came here and was just caught up with all of the emotion crying and when I asked her why, she said she had two pairs of shoes to put down and then she said, I smell death. This is death.

Of course, all of this comes after the Harvard put out a new study that indicates they believe that at least 4,600 people died as a result of Maria. The Puerto Rican government says the death toll remains at 64 even though they have commissioned a study with George Washington University that was supposed to -- part of it be complete in May but there have been delays. And the timing of this is also creating anxiety.

We are now in the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season. And as we have spent the week traveling across this island, many people say that they are not prepared for another hurricane to come because this island is just too vulnerable and is still recovering.

Leyla Santiago, CNN, San Juan, Puerto Rico.


PAUL: And thank you to Leyla for that there. As she said, yes, we are in the official hurricane season right now. Eleven thousand residents still do not have power.

The mayor of Corozal specifically said up to 25 percent of residents still have power, some sort of temporary roofs over their homes.

CNN political commentator Maria Cardona is with us now. And in full transparency, Maria, you grew up in Puerto Rico, I want to let our viewers know. Your daughter is on a school trip there right now.


PAUL: Your brother and his family still live there.


PAUL: Are they confident that they can survive the next hurricane season? Are there any provisions being made?

CARDONA: You know, there are some preparations going on, but there is no question that everybody there is terrified because they see the lack of the recovery efforts, the lack of attention that has been given to this island after the destruction that they suffered through Hurricane Maria and they are not confident that they are going to be able to withstand, especially if it's another category 4 or 5 storm the way that Maria was.

I mean, let's just think about the last study that we just heard about which is almost 5,000 people and probably more will end up having died because of Hurricane Maria.


CARDONA: Christi, that is more than Americans were killed during 9/11 and Katrina put together. Let's think about that for a moment. And what is the U.S. government doing about this?

After four Americans were killed in Benghazi, after the 3,000 Americans that were killed during 9/11, after more than 1,500 Americans that were killed during Katrina, they were all put a -- a bipartisan commission was put together to study those situations, to figure out what happened, to make sure that it never happened again because we did not want that kind of death toll to American citizens. We are talking about more than 5,000 American citizens here, Christi.

PAUL: If that number is right and this is what is so confusing. I mean, let's be very honest.


PAUL: The numbers are just not solid hard numbers here. The Harvard study says 4,645 numbers. The Puerto Rican government as you said say 64 numbers.

"The New York Times" is reporting the true number of deaths could range from nearly 800 to 8,500.


PAUL: And that that 4,645 figure basically is the midpoint of that statistical window. CARDONA: Right.

PAUL: What that tells us is they have no idea and does that surprise you? Because why this late in the game would you not know? Now before I let you answer that question --


PAUL: -- I want to listen with you here to Puerto Rico's governor because he responded to this new Harvard study regarding those numbers.



GOV. RICARDO ROSSELLO, PUERTO RICO: I will certainly look into it and if it's true, Anderson, you know, there will be hell to pay.


PAUL: He is saying, "there will be hell to pay," if it's true that there is talk that there were territory officials who withheld key statistics about people's death.

Here is the thing. If there were 4,600 deaths, CNN has had people there since this happened, Maria, would we not have seen more proof of these deaths?

CARDONA: Well, here is the thing, Christi. Because there are so many areas in Puerto Rico that could not be gotten to right after the hurricane or at least that is what government officials said, what always astounded me, Christi, is that CNN was able to get our reporters to these places and many times, these reporters were the first people that Puerto Ricans saw after the hurricane.

To me, that is embarrassing and shameful that the U.S. government could not get people there, people who were focused on saving people's lives and recovery, but our own reporters were able to get there. Now it is difficult to have an official count but the reason why I believe and so many people on the island believe that the number is going to tragically be above 5,000 is because there were stories and you all did a piece about this right after Hurricane Maria, of people that were actually having -- and this is so horrible to say -- but they were keeping their bodies -- bodies of their loved ones who had passed away during the hurricane or right after because of lack of medical attention and lack of an ability for government official to get to them. They were keeping them in their houses because they didn't know what else to do with the bodies.

There are so many stories like that, Christi, as well as people who, maybe not the day of, maybe not two days, maybe not the week after, but the month after Maria, they perished because of a lack of medical attention. There were so many hospitals who could not get power and who could not keep power. Christi, my brother still tells me of stories not two weeks ago, there was an island-wide blackout that happened and that has been happening constantly. So when you have things like that and when you have people on the brink that need oxygen, for example, or that need dialysis, they can die in a moment's notice. That is why it's so difficult to measure but that is why so many people believe that tragically it is going to be more than 5 5,000 people.

PAUL: And it is just hard to wrap your head around the fact that this is still happening --

CARDONA: Absolutely. Yes.

PAUL: -- as we go into the next season. Maria Cardona --

CARDONA: And we need to keep our attention on it so thank you doing -- continuing to do these reports.

PAUL: Absolutely. These are people's lives. These aren't statistics.

CARDONA: American citizens.

PAUL: Maria Cardona, appreciate it so much. Thank you.

CARDONA: Thank you.

BLACKWELL: Up next, the showdown between America and some of its closest allies. G7 nations square off with the U.S. commerce secretary and the treasury secretary, warn of a possible trade war over tariffs.




BILL MORNEAU, CANADIAN FINANCE MINISTER: What did we ask secretary -- treasury secretary to do? We said that we were collectively hoping that he would bring the message back, the message of regret and disappointment at the American actions and concern that they are not constructive.


PAUL: "Regret and disappointment" there. That is the reaction to President Trump's new trade tariffs from the U.S. closest allies.

BLACKWELL: And they are sending that message as you heard back to Washington by way of the treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, ahead of the G7 summit coming up this week. But Secretary Mnuchin is pushing back. He says the U.S. is not abandoning its leadership in the global economy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) STEVEN MNUCHIN, U.S. TREASURY SECRETARY: Obviously trade is an important issue that President Trump has focused on and rebalancing our trade relationships. Obviously, trade was a big focus of the last few days here. And speaking to all of the members of the G7 and I've already spoken to President Trump and reflected some of the comments and look forward to speaking to him more when I get back.

This was the G7. Anybody who made the comment, you know, I think there was a comment there that the G6 plus one. It was not.


The G7 -- we believe in the g7.


BLACKWELL: Julian Zelizer is joining us now, CNN political analyst and historian and professor at Princeton University. Julian, good morning to you.


BLACKWELL: All right. Historian first, political analyst second. Secretary Mnuchin says that this is not the group of six plus one, that, you know, the U.S. is still part of and supports the G7.

The other members may not feel that way. Have we been here before?

ZELIZER: No, not in this way. It might be that we're still part of it but I think many allies feel that the United States is pulling away. This is a framework established after World War II, that the United States and its allies have maintained to protect free trade and to protect everyone basically being involved on an equal playing field and for many, it feels like this is at the point of unraveling, and it's a moment when other countries like Britain have also been withdrawing.

So many allies are seriously worried and it's fair to say this seems like a potentially new moment in our free trade framework.

BLACKWELL: Well, beyond free trade, I mean, if you consider that there has been this narrative of potential protectionism and isolationism from the Trump administration. I listed a few of them this morning.

The president received as an isolationist to NATO summit in May -- last May rather. Isolated the G20, pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, pulled out of the Paris Climate Agreement, pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal, multinational deal there.

He said Friday that he would be interested in getting out of NAFTA and creating two separate deals with Canada and Mexico. And now as he goes into the G summit this week in Quebec this, as I said, is a narrative that this president is pushing that not only he is pulling out of many of these multinational deals, but he is looking to just these bilateral deals one-on-one. ZELIZER: Yes. It isn't isolationism. He is not withdrawing from the world rather he wants to engage other countries on his own terms. And that's what he's doing replacing NAFTA potentially again with one-on- one deals and he is doing it in an erratic fashion.

This is the other concern. There doesn't seem to be a rhyme and reason to where he will strike next and many allies are not confident they can even communicate with the president. So they're scrambling with people like Ross to try to reach the president. So this is very unnerving and again we are talking about our allies here, we're not talking about our adversaries.

BLACKWELL: And as the summit begins this week in Canada, the suggestion that the steel and aluminum tariffs are to support and protect national security. The question then becomes, is Canada a national security threat?

What does this mean for the NAFTA talks as those negotiations continue? Larry Kudlow, the chief economic adviser for the president says that this is just a family disagreement.

ZELIZER: Well, this is a pretty bitter family disagreement and family disagreements can turn out poorly.

I think the future of NAFTA right now is in question and I think the history that you just outlined of the Trump administration suggests the president might be very serious about allowing this to come apart and we shouldn't take it likely. And I think the president's move this week suggests he is willing to go after some of our closest allies.

BLACKWELL: All right. Julian Zelizer, good to have you, sir.

ZELIZER: Thank you.

PAUL: Well, disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein back in court this week facing charges of sexual assault.

Our legal expert, of course, Joey Jackson, is with us to talk about how this is going to play out possibly this week.



PAUL: Forty-seven minutes past the hour right now.

Disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein is going to be back in court this week. He's been indicted on charges of rape and criminal sex act charges. Also charges stemming from incidents with two different women in 2004 and 2013.

Now, Weinstein's attorney says he will plead not guilty. He's still free after posting $1 million cash bail.

CNN legal analyst and criminal defense attorney Joey Jackson is with us. What do you expect to see this week on Tuesday when he steps in fronts of that judge?

JACKSON: Christi, good morning.

This is what is called a Supreme Court arraignment. It just means that since a grand jury which consists of 23 people, a majority of (INAUDIBLE) 12 say that there is reasonable cause to believe that a crime was committed and that he committed it. Then you're indicted, right?

He wasn't indicted before. So now that's brought to Supreme Court. You're brought before the judge.

You enter a formal plea, that will be not guilty, and the case will be adjourned until a later time. The only wrinkle may be there whether there's a reapplication for bail because of there's a change circumstance, he has now been indicted, I don't anticipate that happening since bail was negotiated and it was widely anticipated that he would be indicted any way.

But this is a formality under New York State law. Not that he has been indicted he has to be officially arraigned on those charges, that's what will happen next week Tuesday.

PAUL: Joey, just on Friday another lawsuit filed in federal court by three women alleging similar charges. Does that have any effect here?

JACKSON: It won't have any effective directly on the criminal case now. Certainly will not have an effect as it relates to next week. Where it may have an effect is whether a judge as the case proceeds allows any of his accusers to testify should there be a trial.

You might remember by way of analogy the Bill Cosby case where multiple accusers were allowed to testify as a pattern, a bad act, a modus operandi of what the defendant did. We could very well see in Harvey Weinstein's instance (ph) not only people who filed suit but other accusers who the prosecution petitions to testify against him in a trial if there is a trial moving forward.

PAUL: All right. Joey Jackson, always appreciate your expertise, sir. Thank you.

JACKSON: My pleasure, Christi. Thank you.


PAUL: Absolutely -- Victor.

BLACKWELL: Still to come, movie star Benedict Cumberbatch, I've been practicing that (INAUDIBLE), reported fights off a gang of attackers trying to mug a cyclist in London.

We're in Washington but we're not talking politics. A special front man for the Capitals in game three of the Stanley Cup but did it work?

COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Who are we talking about? Who they bring out to give hype in our nation's capital? That is coming up and more in sports right here on NEW DAY.


PAUL: A once in a generation event in Washington this weekend. The (INAUDIBLE) hosting of Stanley Cup -- once in a --



PAUL: What do you think I'm talking about?

BLACKWELL: I don't know but it sounds great. I mean, once in a generation. I can't believe I missed it.


WIRE: Good morning to you. Washington hosting a Stanley Cup final for the first time in 20 year. And it showed. Listen to this.


PAT SAJAK, HOST, WHEEL OF FORTUNE: Are you as excited as I am?



WIRE: Pat Sajak in the house. Not the wow factor of those Vegas pre- games with the swords and the flames but the game show host.

(INAUDIBLE) there. Pat, can we get G? A goal for Alex Ovechkin.

An incredible falling back hand. Top shelf stunner. Look that.

That puts the caps on the board first but, Pat, can they get a W? They did. And they win 3-1 in this one securing now a 2-1 series lead.

How about game two of the NBA finals? That is tonight but the focus is staying on J.R. Smith. Did Smith just admit that he had no idea the game was tied when he dribbled around seemingly confused at the end of regulation in game one?

Listen here.


J.R. SMITH, CLEVELAND CAVALIERS: I said I thought we were ahead. I might have said that. Not sure but I might have.


WIRE: Smith blunder likely the reason for Cleveland's loss. LeBron James called that game one of the toughest loss of his career one of them, I should say. But he says now it's time to move forward.


LEBRON JAMES, CLEVELAND CAVALIERS: I mean, it's a new day. For me, you know, I woke up, you know, feeling excited about the opportunity for us to get better today and excited about the opportunity that presents itself tomorrow.


WIRE: All right. Game two tips off tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern.

Now to the Memorial open. Two people stopping in front of a TV at a grocery store in Norman, Oklahoma to watch Tiger Woods taking a share of the lead at one point yesterday, striking up conversations. Those folk talked over 15 minutes showcasing Tiger's allure.

He is getting closer and closer to his first tour win since 2013. He is five strokes behind the leader entering today's final round.

One of tennis marquee matchup set for the French Open tomorrow. Serena Williams getting a third round win yesterday, will now face Maria Sharapova. And what some call a heated rivalry but let's be honest here it's never been even lukewarm in their last 18 head-to- head meetings.

Sharapova has not beaten Serena even once. It will still be compelling because that one right there, Serena, in her hopefully another Superwoman outfit out there doing her thing on the court and rooting for her.

PAUL: All right. Coy, thank you so much.

WIRE: You're welcome.

BLACKWELL: Breaking news in Hawaii right now. Authorities say as many as a dozen people have now been cut off by lava. They are without power, no cell reception, the landlines are down and they have no water.

PAUL: Kilauea's first eruption rocked Hawaii's Big Island four weeks ago. Molten lava has spewed from volcanic fissures ever since. Here is Scott McLean.


SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: After an entire month Kilauea continues to erupt cutting off roads and destroying well over 80 homes so far. Now most of the lava flows are being fed by one single fissure which at times shot some 200 feet into the air. In fact you can see the smoke from that fissure in the background several miles away.

Now new video, though, shows that the fissure is not sending lava as high any more. Still the massive amount that it is producing continues to cause problems. This afternoon a lava flow some 300 yards wide cut off a main highway near the coast, the last remaining escape route for some communities. Meanwhile at the Kilauea summit things have been unusually quiet in recent days.

Brand-new drone footage shows that the main crater of the volcano has been blocked by boulders and debris. Geologists say that the lack of activity could mean one of two things. Either this cycle of explosions or interruptions is coming to an end or there could be pressure building under the surface which could lead to a much larger explosion down the road.

Experts aren't sure which outcome is more likely and so the national park that houses that crater will remain closed indefinitely.

Scott McLean, CNN, Pahoa, Hawaii.

PAUL: And we will keep you posted on what is happening there, certainly.

(INAUDIBLE) the story now you probably know him as the fictional crime fighter Sherlock Holmes, the super hero Dr. Strange, now he's being called a real-life hero.

BLACKWELL: According to the "Sun" Benedict Cumberbatch jumped out of his Uber ride in London and chased off a gang of four attackers trying to mug a food delivery cyclist. The victim's delivery company, Deliveroo, put out this tweet thanking him for his brave actions.

PAUL: An interesting to note here this apparently happened near Baker Street which is, of course, Sherlock Holmes' London address.


CABRERA: President Trump, through his lawyers arguing there's no way he obstructed justice.

SEKULOW: The president didn't sign off on anything.

HUCKABEE SANDERS: He certainly didn't dictate.


CABRERA: The first time the president's attorneys have acknowledged that Trump dictated the statement.

CALLAN: Mr. Trump was, obviously, lying to his lawyers if the lawyers are now being honest about what went down.