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CNN NEWSROOM

Report: GOP Lawmaker Calls on Trump to Fire Miller; "Politico" Asks Where Are Pruitt's E-Mails; ABC's "Connors" to Replace "Roseanne"; Tom Arnold Meets with Cohen, "He Has All the Tapes"; Horses Help Vets with PTSD. Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired June 22, 2018 - 15:30   ET

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


[15:30:00] DAVID CATANESE, SENIOR POLITICS WRITER, U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT: So, I don't have any inside read on this, but I would think if Michael Cohen is going to allow himself to be photographed with Tom Arnold, an enemy of the President, it could be a signal to the President saying look, hey, look out for me in the end if I get hit with charges. Send a pardon my way.

Otherwise I don't understand why, you know, Trump's long-time fixer would be collaborating or colluding with someone who wants to take down the President.

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN HOST: That is the big kwinky-dink on this Friday afternoon. But let's move to what is happening on the border, we know this Republican Congressman is now calling for president from to actually fire one of his top advisers. He wants Stephen Miller gone. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. MIKE COFFMAN, (R), COLORADO: I believe Miller advised him on the border, on this recent problem in terms of tearing families apart. That lack of understanding of the significance of how that played out has Stephen Miller's fingerprints on it. And so, I think the President needs a different adviser.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: Stephen Miller part of that hard-line immigration advising and stance. But do you think for him to go, would pigs be flying first?

KRISTEN SOLTIS ANDERSON, COLUMNIST, WASHINGTON EXAMINER: I think Stephen Miller is a survivor in this administration because he consistently does things that the President likes. Remember I believe it was last summer where he took on reporters in the White House briefing room, went toe to toe over immigration. And it was a performance that the President reportedly found very impressive. He has survived the purge of Steve Bannon. He sort of came in as a Bannon world types.

Former staffer for Jeff Sessions. even as Jeff Sessions getting criticized by the President, Stephen Miller continues to survive. And it is important to understand this particular member of Congress who is calling for Miller to be fired, Mike Coffman from Colorado, he represents a district that has a lot of Latino voters in it. He taught himself to speak Spanish so he could better connect with his district. So clearly the type of Republican on the hill for whom there is an additional level of heartburn coming from just politically from all of this administration's policies as of late.

BALDWIN: We have been talking, speaking of heartburn, of some words that a lot of people have criticized. You had to word "infest" in Trump's tweets, womp-womp coming from Cory Lewandowsky and now this from this Fox morning anchor.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BRIAN KILMEADE, FOX NEWS HOST: Like it or not, these aren't our kids. Show them compassion, but it is not like he is doing this to the people of Idaho or Texas. These are people from another country and now people are saying that they are more important than people in our country who are paying taxes who have needs as well.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: It is those first few words, these aren't our kids. I should point out he later said he didn't mean it like that, but where is the civility?

CATANESE: Look, this was a bad issue, a bad week for the President on this issue across the board. But I wouldn't underestimate the sliver in this country that this is playing to. Remember Trump won the election I think you could argue on stoking immigration fears, on the wall. So, I would -- this is not a winner for them, but they are already in a hole in this midterm election. I think they are talking to that 35 percent who show up at rallies no matter what and want something done about people coming over the border even in the worst conditions.

Even heartbreaking conditions when you see children. There is a sliver of American people in this country who want it stopped. And Trump is responding to their voice. And I think the event he held today showed that he is willing to double down on this issue. It is a Friday. Most White Houses would try to move away from immigration, maybe try to do an event on the economy. Something else that would put it in a positive light. He put victims of immigration crimes behind him on a stage and I think that means him and this White House are all in on this issue.

BALDWIN: David and Kristen, thank you so much.

Coming up next here, another day, another EPA scandal. Scott Pruitt under fire again, this time over his e-mails. The big question, where are they? Back in two minutes.

[15:35:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BALDWIN: After months of what seems like ethics questions and questions over and over involving the chief Scott Pruitt, government watch dogs have yet another question for him. That being where are his e-mails? "Politico" is reporting today a review of through it's government e-mail accounts indicates that he only wrote one external e-mail in his first ten months in office. One. This from an EPA chief who has taken enormous steps to conceal his actions including installing that $43,000 sound proof booth in his office. "Politico's" Emily Holden was the first to discuss the e-mail scandal and she is on with me now. Thanks for joining me. One external e-mail in ten months. What is the explanation and why does this matter?

EMILY HOLDEN, REPORTER, "POLITICO": Because the Sierra Club is a number of groups fighting EPA in court and when they got the records back, they got 25 pages, that is all that the EPA said that they had on Scott Pruitt, and only one external e-mail sent which a lot of oversight groups say that is too hard to believe. But EPA says he doesn't use e-mail, not something that he does.

BALDWIN: Doesn't e-mail? I know some of the worry was communicating in secret. Are they saying that is not a concern?

HOLDEN: That's a question that people are asking. It seems like a pretty difficult job do without e-mail. But his staff turned up thousands and thousands of e-mail just talking to people on a day to day basis. So how is he getting any work done if there is no e-mail? And this is really one of many transparency concerns that EPA, you mentioned the sound proof booth, he also does not tell people where he will be in advance. The staff won't release that information. He does not release his calendars unless prompted by the courts. In the public records requests either.

BALDWIN: The Chick-fil-A franchise, the mattress --

HOLDEN: The condo he rented from the lobbyist, yes.

BALDWIN: All of that, Emily Holden, stay on it. Thank you so much. For the latest on Pruitt there.

But next, we have to talk about the Connors. The Connors are coming back. But will it be a hit without disgraced star Roseanne? Let's talk about that coming up.

[15:40:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BALDWIN: Just weeks after disappearing from ABC's primetime lineup, "Roseanne" is back. But a spinoff with a new name and slightly different cast. Roseanne Barr is not returning. The show's working title the "Connors." All the other major stars will be back. The reboot had been yanked after Barr posted racist remarks. But now the question is can the "Connors" survive without her.

We wanted to do a blast from the past looking at history and just a sample of spinoff hits and misses. The hits, Lisa Bonet left "The Cosby show" for "A Different World." "Melrose Place" a huge hit thanks to its predecessor "Beverly Hills 90210." Kim Fields became a big star once "Facts of Life" spun off the 70s classic "Different Strokes." And "All in The Family" bore several spinoffs most notably "The Jeffersons." And "Maude."

Those were the hits. Now the misses. Ratings were not very friendly to "Joey" with former friends Matt LeBlanc.

[15:45:00] The iconic "Mash" led to "After Mash." That didn't last long. Everybody loved Joanie and Chachi but only when they were on "happy days." And they

were mostly jeers for the "Cheers" spinoff, "The Tortellis."

So, what does the future hold for this "Roseanne" spinoff? Will it make TV history? Should a tackle race? With me now, W. Kamau Bell, host of "United Shades of America." And Kamau, "The Connors" do you think it will work. And how do they acknowledge that "Roseanne" went away?

W. Kamau Bell, CNN HOST: First of all, why do you got to bring up "Joey"? Nobody was thinking about that show.

BALDWIN: A little sensitive for you?

BELL: Yes, like -- Matt LeBlanc is doing good.

BALDWIN: Sorry.

BELL: I don't think we're putting this in the right category. This is not like a spinoff. This is really like a new sort of de-boot where you take the major character out and move them on like with "House of Cards" also with "Transparent" where we are seeing can the major shows live without their main characters who left in scandal. And so, I think that is a different question. And I mean is this a net plus? Roseanne is getting paid for this new show. They had to settle with her to continue the show. And so, she is getting paid for a her racist remarks. She gets to sit home and make money. I don't know that this is a net plus.

BALDWIN: Cheering for it?

BELL: I wasn't cheering for it before, so --

BALDWIN: So, you won't be cheering for it now. Is what I'm hearing from you.

BELL: Good luck, everybody. I mean, yes.

BALDWIN: Let's talk about you. Let's talk about you and Canada. So, you go to Canada to see if our allies to the north can teach us a thing or two when it comes to health care and politics and winter sports. Here is a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BELL: What is the biggest difference between Canada and the United States of America?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In Canada, no matter where I go, people are really informed on what is going on in Canada and the world. Some of the places I go in the U.S. really don't know a whole lot. And I'm sorry, I really have to be cautious what I say.

BELL: I can't act like that is not true.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is not like what is happening in the U.S., there is more --

BELL: What do you mean by what is happening in --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: South of the border type situation.

BELL: I don't think of myself as being south of the border. What is going on south of the border?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Whether white, black, Asian, I think that in Canada there is a lot more of that understanding, you know, there is a lot of Americans that come up here and they go, oh, I can walk safely, I can do this? And yes, this is Canada.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: What were your impressions? Was it the security threat that Trump had recently referred to Canada as? What did you find?

BELL: I mean, I just sort of watched that clip going, man, we taped that months ago and things have gotten much, much worse. So, a pat on the United States to the crew for nailing that. I think that, you know, it is interesting when we talk about south of the border, we are sort of the Mexico to Canada. And I wonder are how life would be different for Mexico if there wasn't the United States between them and Canada. I think the relationship between Mexico and Canada would go better. But Canada is the safe space when you talk to those who moved there.

BALDWIN: It is the all-new episode of "United Shades of America" this Sunday 10:00 p.m. thank you.

Still to come, a mother says she would rather stay in Mexico and risk potential death than be separated from her daughter at the border. Is the administration's deterrent effort working?

[15:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BALDWIN: All this week we have been telling the story of extraordinary people and organizations that are making a difference. The special series is called "Champions for Change" and he gave us an opportunity to highlight issues that are important to us. CNN anchor Fredricka Whitfield believes deeply in the power of horses. She highlights how equine assisted therapy is not helping people with mental and physical challenges including military vets fighting PTSD.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

RUSTY FAIRBAIRN, NAVY VET: I was in the Navy for a year and eight months. I discharged in 2006.

FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: What was it like for you when you got out of the navy?

FAIRBAIRN: It was rough.

WHITFIELD: What do you mean?

FAIRBAIRN: You go from a very structured timetable and everything and you know when you are doing what to I was like, now what? And it is just a rough spot. It was major depression, anxiety, PTSD from my dad passing away.

[15:55:00] WHITFIELD: Stacy Edwards opened her barn and heart at Special Equestrians of Georgia to help as many vets as possible, for free.

STACEY EDWARDS OPENED HER BARN TO PTSD VICTIMS: It is such a long road. I think for anybody, but for the veterans who are already dealing with life issues and then post-traumatic stress and trying to have a family. There is so many things that we as humans have to deal with.

WHITFIELD: In 12 years of offering horse therapy here, she has yet to break even in operating costs but said she can't afford not to do this.

EDWARDS: With PTSD, you can't get out of your head and it is amazing to watch horses connect with people who have something going on but for veterans in particular it is a big powerful animal that seems to understand them.

WHITFIELD: How has it made a difference in your life?

FAIRBAIRN: It pretty much saved my life, going from a very dark place and not having a lot of people to talk to or people I was comfortable talking to about all of the issues I had. For me it was just wanting to run from everything, which I did for a long time. A lot of suicidal thoughts and still battle with them. I still battle with a lot of anxiety, but there is an outlet for all of that now.

WHITFIELD: Really hits home with me because my dad is a military vet. And my brother is a military vet. My dad, he was a Tuskegee airman and served in World War II, Korea War and U.S. army and then later U.S. Air Force. He would also be an Olympian representing USA, representing the armed forces. Most of his years he did not talk about his military service. And about five years before his passing did we as a family even know that he had been struggling with PTSD. Learning of his diagnosis and not knowing of the signs and not knowing that he may have been struggling with this all those years also kind of adds to the agony of what it is for so many military vets that many are suffering in silence.

Like the markings on a horse, there are so many unique ways the massive magical creatures touch our lives. I've loved them from early on. Even volunteering as a teen at Rock Creek Horse Center in Washington, D.C.

I think when I came here, it was for selfish reasons, but I would get a chance to be around horses but at the same time what I end up seeing here was that there was this beautiful therapeutic riding program and I would see how transformational it would be when you have riders who had Down syndrome, who had neurological, who had spinal issues.

KAYLA GIORDANO, RIDES AT ROCK CREEK HORSE CENTER: I have cerebral palsy. I know in horseback riding, the horse doesn't judge you, on how hard you try, and they judge on your success and feelings and they want to help you.

EDWARDS: Everyone is looking for new outlets in which to address things that they have encountered, whether it is in combat or in training. The technique of equine that therapy has advanced so much that challenges are just being tackled differently today.

WHITFIELD: You are changing people's lives.

EDWARDS: I hope so. I like to help however I can. I think our most vulnerable population is also one of our most special populations, especially our vets.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BALDWIN: Fred, those are gorgeous creatures, aren't they?

WHITFIELD: They are.

BALDWIN: Wow!

WHITFIELD: I know.

BALDWIN: A couple of questions. You mentioned the barn owner has yet to break even.

WHITFIELD: Let me tell you, everyone knows just owning a horse, if you have one it is expensive. And now imagine having about 20 horses and you have a barn and land. For Stacy Edwards and she is my champion for change, more than $70,000 in operating costs a year. Now she takes in some money for lessons that she teaches there. But for the most part, it is donations that helps keep this going.

And if not for the donations, then she's reaching into her own pocket, she and her husband, maintaining this facility, making sure that the doors are open, whether it is for young kids who have various challenges from cerebral palsy to neurological disorders, to of course she opens up her barn and her hearts to all of the vets. It is really important to her given that she has vets in her family. She understands the need and she has seen the difference not just in rusty, but in so many others and said, it is more than worth it. But again, she would love more assistance out there for people to see what it is she does so she could continue doing this past the 12 years she's already committed.

BALDWIN: I loved hearing that young woman say, these horses don't judge us. You are transported into a different place on these beautiful creatures.

WHITFIELD: They are magical.

BALDWIN: The 30 seconds I have left, for the people who aren't in a condition to go to her, go to her, can she get the horses to them.

WHITFIELD: She does. And that is extraordinary, and she brings the mini horses to nursing homes, to childcare facilities, to schools. Because getting sometimes to a barn is one of the biggest obstacles that even vets have. She created a situation where she loads them up into a trailer and she brings the horses, these mini horses to them, magical and amazing. She's so generous. That is Stacy Edwards, Special Equestrians of Georgia.