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Democrats Push to Block President Trump's SCOTUS nominee; Questionable Images Seen from Yongbyon Nuclear Site; Trump and Putin to Meet Soon; Germans Going Home with Dropped Shoulders; Aired 3-4a ET

Aired June 28, 2018 - 03:00   ET

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


[03:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Some people think outside of obviously war and peace, it's the most important thing that you could have.

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ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN HOST: That thing is replacing a United States Supreme Court judge, but not just any judge. Why this choice could shape the court and the country for years to come.

In Thailand, desperation and fear grow as rescuers seek more help in their ongoing search for 13 missing in a flooded cave.

And another World Cup shocker, defending champs Germany sent home after a stunning loss to South Korea.

Hello, and welcome to our viewers joining us from around the world. I'm Rosemary Church, and this is CNN Newsroom.

Well, Donald Trump has a huge opportunity to move the U.S. Supreme Court much further to the right. Justice Anthony Kennedy who cast crucial swing votes upholding abortion and gay rights announced his retirement Wednesday.

Mr. Trump says he hopes to pick a replacement as soon as possible.

And Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell promised to hold a vote before this fall's midterm elections. The president talked about Kennedy at a campaign rally in North Dakota Wednesday night.

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TRUMP: I'm very honored that he chose to do it during my term in office. Because he felt confident in me to make the right choice and carry on his great legacy. That's why he did it?

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CHURCH: Justice Kennedy met with President Trump to hand deliver his retirement letter.

CNN's Jessica Schneider has more on Kennedy's career and impact on the high court.

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ANTHONY KENNEDY, ASSOCIATE JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES: The whole on the of the judiciary is to ensure stability, continuity and so we pride our self on the fact that there's little change.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: In a move that could set in motion a seismic shift to the right on the highest court in the land, Justice Anthony Kennedy is retiring after more than 30 years on the bench.

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KENNEDY: We as a people here bound together.

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SCHNEIDER: Kennedy now 81 years old swore in the newest justice to join the court last year, his former clerk Neil Gorsuch.

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NEIL GORSUCH, ASSOCIATE JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'm Neil M. Gorsuch do solemnly swear.

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SCHNEIDER: While President Trump replaced one conservative with another when he chose Gorsuch to take Justice Antonin Scalia seat, he now has the opportunity to move the court significantly to the right when the he replaces Kennedy, a centrist.

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KENNEDY: The cases swing, I don't.

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SCHNEIDER: Kennedy has never liked being labeled the court swing vote. But for years it has been his vote that is often decided the outcome of cases in a closely divided court.

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JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Anthony Kennedy was by far the most powerful justice of my lifetime, controlling the outcome of so many important cases because he was the swing vote, the one vote that was in play.

RONALD REAGAN, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Thank you for coming to witness this is hick occasion.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: Kennedy a Ronald Reagan appointee.

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KENNEDY: I, Anthony Kennedy, do solemnly swear.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: Was sworn in, in 1988.

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KENNEDY: I shall honor the Constitution.

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SCHNEIDER: He sided with his conservative colleagues on issues such as gun control and voting rights. He also the majority opinion in Citizens United striking down election spending limits for corporations.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KENNEDY: So help me God.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Congratulations.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: And in Bush v. Gore, he helped clear the way for George W. Bush's presidency. But to the dismay of those on the right, Kennedy joined the liberals on the court on abortion, affirmative action and the death penalty.

His most lasting legacy will likely be in the area of gay rights. In 2015, Kennedy penned a landmark opinion clearing the way for same-sex marriage nationwide.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KENNEDY: They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the laws and the Constitution grants them that right.

TOOBIN: Anthony Kennedy grew up in a conservative Catholic family in Sacramento, California. But there was something that offended him from the very beginning about discrimination about gay people and his principal legacy on the court will be as the father of constitutional protections for gay rights and for marriage equality in the United States.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: But Kennedy this term tried to strike a balance between gay rights and religious freedom.

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UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everyone deserves the cake.

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SCHNEIDER: When he wrote the majority opinion siding with a Colorado baker who refused to make a custom wedding cake for two gay men. In his opinion Kennedy acknowledged the baker's sincere religious beliefs that motivated his objection, but warned against the broad use of Reagan to justify denying same couples goods and services.

[03:05:03] Writing, "Any decision in favor of the baker would have to be sufficiently constraint."

In 2009, Kennedy offered a rare glimpse of what it's like to be behind the scenes on closely divided cases.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KENNEDY: There are not a lot of high fives and back slaps. There's a moment of quiet, a moment of respect maybe even sometimes awe the process. We realize one before us is going to having to write out a decision which teaches and gives reasons for what we do.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: As time proves him to be one of the most unpredictable justices personal dignity and liberty were always themes in Anthony Kennedy's jurisprudence.

Jessica Schneider, CNN, Washington.

CHURCH: Democrats and Republicans are already staking out their territory over Kennedy's replacement. You may recall back in 2016 when Justice Antonin Scalia passed away, Republicans refused to give President Obama's nominee so much as a hearing in an election year. Now, Democrats are playing that same card.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R), KENTUCKY: The next justice could fundamentally alter the direction of the Supreme Court. And have a profound impact on our country. So of course, of course, the American people should have a say in the court's direction.

The Senate stands ready to fulfill its constitutional role by offering advice and consent on President Trump's nominee to fill this vacancy. We will vote to confirm Justice Kennedy's successor this fall.

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK, MINORITY LEADER: This is the most important Supreme Court vacancy for this country in at least a generation. Nothing less than the fate of our health care system, reproductive rights for women and countless other protections for middle class Americans are at stake. (END VIDEO CLIP)

CHURCH: Kennedy's resignation is effective July 31st. He says he wants to spend more time with his family.

CNN legal analyst Paul Callan joins me to talk more about all of this. Good to have you with us.

PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Nice to be here.

CHURCH: Now given Justice Kennedy sided with his more liberal colleagues on issues like abortion and same sex marriage, the president is embracing this opportunity to replace him with a much more conservative justice. How might this reshape the court and the landscape of this country possibly for a generation?

CALLAN: It could have an enormous impact on the landscape of the United States and I say that because the president has said he's going to work with a list of 25 candidates that he publicly released when he was running for president.

Those candidates were vetted by an organization called the Federalist Society which is a group of about 65,000 very conservative lawyers and others in the United States. So these candidates were kind of carefully vetted for conservative principles and positions on issues. So I would think that if someone selected from this list you'll see a much more conservative Supreme Court.

CHURCH: And I want to ask you this then. Given that, if President Trump picks someone perceived to be too conservative, how likely is it that some Republicans such as Senators Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski would vote against that pick.

CALLAN: Well, that's a great question because those are two very important votes. And on issues like gay marriage and women's reproductive rights, those two women are not going to want somebody who is going to overturn, for instance, Roe versus Wade. So he's got to be careful that he doesn't lose those two votes because he needs the vote of every single Republican in the Senate to get confirmation.

CHURCH: Yes. And of course given all the candidates on Mr. Trump's list of 25, more conservative than Kennedy, would you expect to see any changes made to previous Supreme Court decisions such as abortion or same-sex marriage?

CALLAN: Well, you know, a lot of -- a lot of Democrats are saying and will continue to say that this could be the end of Roe versus Wade and that we'll be thrown back into the dark ages in terms of women's reproductive rights. I don't agree with that.

I think Roe versus Wade that decision has been around for about 30 years. And the court tends to accept old decisions like that that have been repeatedly readopted by the court as settled law. And I'd be very surprised if you saw a change in that.

Where you may see a change though, is in other areas where you know, the liberals want some sort of doctrine adopted and sustained. You may see a more conservative approach. Now it's hard to predict what those will be.

But we saw an example of it yesterday, of course with the travel ban. You know, a liberal court might have found that travel ban to be unconstitutional, but there were five conservative votes including Justice Kennedy and of course it was sustained.

[03:10:09] Yes, indeed. And of course we know that President Trump and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell are determined to get this done before the midterm elections and Democrats actually have little power to stop that from happening. But what tactics might they use to slow this process down until the midterms?

CALLAN: The tactic that I see them attempting to use is to kill the first nominee whoever it is by coming up with something from the person's past or a position they took in a court case to say that they're unsuitable for the Supreme Court. If they could do that, then he might not get the appointment in before the election because it takes about three months to go through the entire process of vetting, proposing, and having a nominee approved by the Senate.

So, I think that's what you're going to see. Very, very aggressive attack on the initial nominee, and the hopes to knock that nominee out of the box so that then it becomes a bigger issue in the election.

CHURCH: And of course, because President Trump has said well, the list is there, which is very unusual, too. We haven't seen that before in the past, have we, where a president has actually made public the list of candidates that may fill that upcoming Supreme Court position. But would there be anyone on that list that the Democrats might say yes, maybe we would vote for this particular person?

CALLAN: No, I don't think they will. Most of them anyway. There are a couple who are in states where Trump is very popular who are going to be in a very, very difficult position.

But Senator Schumer made a statement today essentially saying and urging his colleagues in the Senate not to vote for anybody who's put forward by the president.

There's really no political gain for a Democrat voting for a Trump nominee. So I really think he's got to put this together largely with Republicans and maybe one or two Democrats will come over.

I, by the way think choosing a woman would be a very wise way for the president to go. We haven't had a woman appointed to the Supreme Court in a long, long time. And that's a weak area of support for him. So I think -- and there are a lot of women, very qualified women on his list. So I'm looking to see if he goes to the woman for the nominee.

CHURCH: It will be interesting to see how quickly we see who he nominates in the end. We'll keep a very close eye on it. Of course, Paul Callan, many thanks. Good to have you with us.

CALLAN: Thank you. CHURCH: Well, we expect to learn Thursday when and where President

Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet next month.

U.S. national security adviser John Bolton has been in Moscow, hammering out the details at the summit with Russian officials. Bolton also met with President Putin and tried to quell any apprehension about the planned meeting.

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JOHN BOLTON, UNITED STATES NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: The fact is that it's important for the leaders of these two countries to meet. There are a wide range of issues despite the differences between us where both President Trump and President Putin think they may be able to find constructive solutions. I'd like to hear someone say that's a bad idea.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CHURCH: Senior international correspondent Fred Pleitgen is watching it all from Moscow. He joins us now live. Good to see you, Fred. So John Bolton wasn't always a fan of getting Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin together. But here he is preparing the groundwork for just such a summit. How is he expected to plan and what are the risks involved and of course, the concerns of European allies?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, there are certainly some concerns, Rosemary, by European allies whether or not this is going too quickly. Also we know that this meeting probably will take place in the proximity of a NATO summit where obviously Russia and some of the problems European countries and other U.S. allies have with Russia will be a theme there, as well.

So certainly there are some concerns by European allies of the United States. At the same time, I think it's quite interesting to see John Bolton, the national security adviser come here and really come away with an agreement to have the summit happen very, very quickly.

So it seems as though as far as details are concerned, they can't really have spoken about that much. I think there's a general feeling about which topics they are going to want to tackle. And that's something that Bolton said yesterday at his press conference, as well.

And President Trump by the way, later also he said, he said Syria would probably be on the table, he said Ukraine would probably be a topic that would be discussed. That's going to be a very difficult one.

It was one of the few areas in the press conference that John Bolton did after meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin where he did gave a very straight answer. The question, for instance, about whether or not the U.S. might get softer on the topic of Crimea, he said that was not the policy of the United States.

[03:14:59] Whereas, with other things, he was saying look, these two leaders are need to sit together and they need to talk. He said one of the things that apparently will be on the table is the alleged election meddling in the 2016 election.

Bolton saying that he spoke about that with Vladimir Putin, and also with Sergey Lavrov. It was a very quick and very high level meeting that took place here in Moscow.

And then certainly you have all these other big policy areas where the two want to sit together want to see if they can come to some sort of not necessarily in agreement on these issues but at least start talking about them, trying to tackle them in the future.

So, certainly this was a big, big step for the administration. It was a summit that President Trump said he wanted. He said he wanted to meet with Vladimir Putin, and certainly the Russians very happy about the fact that this is something that is now apparently going to take place.

They've been saying for a very long time they believe that these contacts are very important. They've been complaining for a very long time that they haven't really had inroads into the new administration. They say that the communication between the Trump administration and the Russians hasn't been what they wanted.

So certainly right now, Moscow very happy and judging from what President Trump said yesterday, he seems to be very happy, as well, Rosemary.

CHURCH: Yes. It certainly raised a few eyebrows on the part of allies especially when you have situations where he's shaking hands, he's smiling with the likes of President Putin and we saw it with Kim Jong- un--

PLEITGEN: Yes.

CHURCH: -- this falling out with his allies is intriguing optics. Fred Pleitgen, thank you so much for joining us. I appreciate it.

All right. Well, new images of North Korea are raising concern. What experts are saying about the recent pictures of work at a nuclear site. We'll take a look at those.

Plus, European leaders come together to try to help these stranded migrants. But can they find a way to end the immigration crisis.

Plus, a major reshuffling at the World Cup as defending champ Germany falls to underdog South Korea to the disbelief of fans everywhere. We'll have that for you when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CHURCH: Welcome back, everyone. Well, the U.S. defense secretary is in South Korea to discuss North Korean denuclearization. After meeting with his counterpart, James Mattis said the U.S. commitment to security remains ironclad. He added that that includes maintaining current U.S. troop levels.

[03:19:58] His visit comes as a monitoring group says new satellite images show North Korea making modifications at its Yongbyon nuclear research facility. That has some asking questions about Pyongyang's commitment to denuclearize. But that's only one development on the Korean peninsula.

With us now Will Ripley in Beijing and Paula Hancocks in Seoul. Good to see you both. A lot to cover. Paula, let's start with you. Defense Secretary Mattis, as we said, is in South Korea he met with his South Korean counterpart. What all came out of that meeting and what more will he be discussing while he's there?

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Rosemary, he's finished that meeting now with the South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo, he's heading back to Osan Air Base and about to head to Japan tonight.

So what they mainly spoke about as far as we can tell from the opening statements that they gave and certainly the most pressing concern from a South Korean point of view is the military drills between the U.S. and South Korea.

Just a couple weeks ago at the end of the Singapore summit, the U.S. President Donald Trump who had just met with Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, said that he was suspending what he called the war games calling them provocative.

So this is likely to have been one of the main topics of conversation between these two men. We heard from Secretary Mattis he did mention that there was a decision to suspend Ulchi-Freedom Guardian which is a massive drill that's usually held at the end of summer. But he said so it that can give it a chance to work to find a peaceful resolution.

But also pointing out that the U.S. and South Korean militaries are ready to confront any kind of confrontation should the need arise.

We heard some similar things from the South Korean defense minister as well. But one interesting point we're hearing from a South Korean foreign ministry official is that there is some disagreement between the U.S. and South Korea when it comes to cost sharing.

They have these discussions on cost sharing of U.S. forces in Korea every so often that this round has been going since March. But the last couple of days the U.S. has now demanded that they also share the cost of spending strategic assets to the Korean peninsula, to this area, potentially the airports, the aircraft carriers that they send to this region, as well which South Korea is saying they don't want to do. So that could potentially have been something that these two defense ministers discussed, as well. Rosemary?

CHURCH: Interesting point there. And Paula, I did also want to talk to you about the promise on the part of North Korea to return the remains of about 200 U.S. soldiers. That still hasn't happened. Why is that?

HANCOCKS: We don't have a specific timeline for this. We know that the U.S. military is ready. The United Nations commander at the DMZ is ready to receive those remains. They've got a hundred wooden caskets up in the border, they've got more than at the Osan Air Base which is where we would expect these remains to go being flown to Hawaii for identification.

What we heard from the U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo when talking to a Senate panel was it will happen, he is expecting, but it hasn't happened yet. This was something that the U.S. president have suggested was already in progress.

But we're hearing locally that they're just waiting for North Korea to be ready to hand over these remains, so there's no explanation from Pyongyang at this point as why this is taking a little longer than expected.

CHURCH: All right. Our Paula Hancocks bringing us up to date on those developments from Seoul in South Korea. Many thanks to you.

Let's turn now the to you Will Ripley who joins us there from Beijing. And I wanted to talk about this new satellite images, Will. They show North Korea has made improvements to its Yongbyon nuclear research center. Why is it happening now if North Korea had pledged to denuclearize? And how concerned should we be with this apparent mixed message.

WILL RIPLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's really unclear exactly what is happening at Yongbyon which is North Korea's only known nuclear reactor that fuels its nuclear program. That is where they produce plutonium which they use to build nuclear warheads.

And what these images from 38 North show according to their analyst is that there have been modifications made to the cooling system of the nuclear reactor that produces plutonium.

Now it's unclear if this work was done before or after the summit in Singapore on June 12. But what is clear is that workers have been moving at a very rapid pace according to 38 North. They've also put up at least two what are described as non-industrial buildings. This could be everything from a VIP observation post to some other office on site.

Obviously, if you're looking at this in the overall theme of hoping North Korea is going to scale back and eliminate its nuclear program, to see them making modifications at Yongbyon might be disconcerting.

However, the analysts at 38 North also point out that this should not be taken as a sign that North Korea is somehow backing off of its promise to denuclearize. These are work orders that could been issued long before the summit in Singapore. And until Pyongyang gives an official order otherwise that work will continue despite whatever may be happening diplomatically. Rosemary?

[03:25:05] CHURCH: We will of course continue to watch that. Will Ripley, joining us live from Beijing. Many thanks to you.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Towards the near post. Bouncing around dangerously. South Korea have scored! Can you believe it? Germany are going home. (END VIDEO CLIP)

CHURCH: Stunning, no other way to describe the South Korean win, the German loss and this World Cup.

Our Kate Riley of CNN world sport joins us now to try to explain. What did it go so terribly wrong for Germany and so terribly right for South Korea, what happened?

KATE RILEY, CNN SPORT ANCHOR: Yes, I mean, German just haven't looked with it all tournament. They looked leggy on the day. Yes, there was a catastrophe with Neuer far up the pitch and not back in goal. And that's when their second goal came in and we're going to show what happened. A disaster really sums it up.

CHURCH: Totally.

RILEY: Right. Well, many are calling this the curse of the World Cup winners. For the fourth time in five tournaments, the defending champion is crushed out of the group stage. But they're told this was something out, wasn't it?

Germany were eliminated from the tournament after South Korea scored twice, one in the fourth minute of the second half stoppage time and another in the seventh minute of stoppage giving the Asian nation a 2- nil win.

It's the first time the Germans have been knocked in the first round of the tournament since 1938. Would you believe? Yes. We were just telling you there, Rosemary, about that.

Well, Mexico had led to prove as heading into the final day but needed a life line to survive after Sweden crushed them 3-nil (Inaudible). Sweden grabbed the group's top spot ahead of Mexico by virtue of their superior goal difference.

And amazingly Germany is headed home. And for so many years, the German team was inflicted misery on everyone else at the World Cup and now they know exactly how it feels. The scenes from Berlin where of those who feeling utter devastation as the fans realized well, there was no way the cup was going to be returning to Germany.

Now remember the World Cup four years ago, that fateful semifinal when Germany thrashed Brazil 7-1. It was the most humiliating night of the tournament host and the wounds cut very deep.

(CROWD CHEERING)

RILEY: Yes, fine voice. So it was no surprise to see Brazilian fans out on the streets celebrating Germany's demise at the World Cup earlier. And a few hours after that, Brazil successfully advanced to the knockout stage and they don't have to run into the Germans again. Lucky them.

Well, Brazil played Serbia in their final group E game. Neymar (Inaudible) will secure their passage to the round of 16. They did much better than that winning 2-nil to take the group. Paulinho scoring first and then in the second half it was Thiago Silva completing a quite remarkable narrative.

Silva began his career in Moscow, he ended up for several months in hospital with T.B. It was so bad that he might have lost part of his lungs. But obviously this is a much happier experience, wasn't it?

CHURCH: Amazing. You've got to really wonder what's ahead.

RILEY: I know.

CHURCH: What are the matches we should look for? What possibly could go wrong?

RILEY: Right. OK. My team England are playing. We're guaranteed a place in the next round.

(CROSSTALK)

CHURCH: So you're happy.

RILEY: I'm happy but who knows, Rosemary. This is some wacky World Cup, isn't it? Belgium and England obviously playing and they have both advanced to group G. already. Thursday's game and (Inaudible) will decide who finishes top.

And on the left-hand side are the draw. There's a bit more to play for group A before that. Only Poland had been eliminated. They face group leaders Japan while Africa's only remaining representative Senegal take on Columbia and any of the top three can actually progress here.

CHURCH: Wow. OK.

(CROSSTALK)

RILEY: We'll see tomorrow.

CHURCH: So we'll see what happens. Kate Riley, always a pleasure.

RILEY: Thank you.

CHURCH: Thank you so much. I appreciate it.

Well, a quick break here. And then a migrant rescue ship finally reaches safe harbor. But Europe's migration crisis is far from solved. Germany's make or break moment in search of an answer.

And Prince William wraps up a politically sensitive visit, an official first for the British royal. We are live from Jerusalem, next.

[03:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN NEWSROOM HOST: Welcome back to "CNN Newsroom." I am Rosemary Church. Let's update you on the main stories we're following. The U.S. Supreme Court appears poised to take a giant step to the right. Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement Wednesday meaning Donald Trump will get to nominate a replacement. The typically conservative Kennedy cast the key swing votes in case upholding abortion and gay rights.

The court dealt a major blow to public sector unions in its final decision of the term. The justices ruled 5-4 that nonunion members cannot be force to pay fees for collective bargaining or other union activities. The Union say they have to represent all employees' union members or not.

U.S. National Security Adviser, John Bolton met with Russian President Vladimir Putin Wednesday in Moscow and announced Mr. Putin and U.S. President Trump will meet for a summit in the coming weeks. Detail on when and where are expected on Thursday. But America's European allies are already set to be concerned with Mr. Trump may make promises they oppose.

Prince William is wrapping up a diplomatically challenging trip to the Middle East, he is the first British royal to make an official visit to the Palestinian territories and he assured Palestinians they have not been forgotten. Prince William is in Jerusalem now for the final day of his trip.

Our Max Foster is there, he joins us now live with what's ahead. But Max, let's start with what has just happened. I know that Prince William has just been there where you are. Talk to us about what's been happening today in Jerusalem and then later we'll get to his earlier visit at the Palestinian territories.

MAX FOSTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, exactly yesterday was last Ramallah. Today is very much about the Jerusalem area. He was up on the Mount of Olives taking in the view of the Old City, so you can understand it fully. Then he came in here, he went around the temple mounts then he came down here to the western wall, a place of prayer in the wall. There's lots of excitement, there are lots of (inaudible) today and there is also dancing as soon as he left, because the interpretation was the prince came to their (inaudible). Much excitement about that.

And then he is since gone to the church of the Holy Sepulchre as well. So, typical of what he has been trying to do here, pay respect to all the different communities in this very diverse part of the world, but be fair and balance with all of them, as well. Visiting all the key holy sites here, religious sites in Jerusalem which could be a real challenge for lots of visiting VIP's. But he is taking them all on and trying to balance out his time he spent each of them. So, this very sense of political religious tight rope that he has been walking. He continues to do -- as soon as it's over. Then to be setting off on his flight. I think, we partly surely Rosemary with his reception on how he managed to walk this.

[03:35:04] CHURCH: And as we've been talking to you, Max, on the right hand side of the screen, we are looking at these live pictures of Prince William. I did want to ask you, because this has overall been an incredible test of Prince William's diplomatic skills so far. How did his visit to the Palestinian territories go and just how careful did he have to be, how delicate has he had to be, you know, really appearing to be above politics here which is something he has to do as a royal?

FOSTER: I wonder if he was called out by some of the Presidential meetings he had. Because he met the Israeli President who said take a message of peace to the Palestinian area. So William met the Palestinian Authority President, he then spoke about how he wanted peace, he talk about his political solution he was looking out there.

Prince William can't get involved on politics, all he said was he endorse peace in those meetings. But then went into Ramallah. I went into the refugee camp, he visited after he went in there. There was a very positive response there. The idea that he went in and he expressed sympathy with the situation there. And spent time there. He didn't just pop in and pop out as many these VIP spent time, ate the food, let as many people as he could and went around the area. Very tight security there for him.

But he had a good reception there. But also a very good reception here, I spoke to one lady who was watching him as he went up to the wall and said he is a wonderful man. I think, you know, whenever a visiting VIP comes in and highlights issues, political or religious that are in an area, then it's welcome if it is given a wider platform as long as the lights of Prince William don't make too much judgement. So he managed to do that. So, I think he can be pretty pleased to see him move on towards his kingship one day which is the whether he face the real test, when he is actually monarch.

CHURCH: Yes. Indeed. I mean, this is the problem, isn't it? Because he has to appear to be above the politics and this is a very difficult part of the world when it comes to that. So, you do have to ask, what was the point of his trip there?

FOSTER: It was interesting, because he was involved with the itinerary. Lots of people are involve in the itinerary, local officials, officials in London, of course, as well. So he wanted to see these events happen and you know, royals don't speak thru words as much as they do through actions. Lots of symbolism. He is learning how symbolism works. A very sensitive area.

Even last night there was a reception were many Palestinian visitors and he spoke to a group Gaza and said he wished that Gaza would come up more as an issue. So, he is clearly very aware, a very well informed about all the issues here. But trying to just represent the international view I guess as he comes in here and he had a huge amount of media following him. He was aware of that. He was aware who is highlighting issues. So, really, making sure all of the issues here are remembered around the world Rosemary.

CHURCH: All right. Our Max Foster bring us up to date on Prince William's tour there and live from Jerusalem many thanks to you, Max.

Well, the migrant crisis in Europe to be dealt with just hours from now when E.U. leaders meet in Brussels to look for a solution. It comes after this ship carrying more than 230 migrants finally docked at a port in Malta. It was stranded for five days while Europe decided who would take the people in.

Eight countries eventually agreed to do so and with that stand up resolve it is time for leaders to deal with the bigger issue. And no one says more pressure on European migration than German Chancellor, Angela Merkel. She is addressing parliament this hour ahead of the E.U. Summit. And our Atika Schubert joins us now from Berlin. Of course Atika, no solution was found earlier in the week when the unofficial meeting and when the leaders got together and try to come up with some sort of solution. There's an expectation that they should be able to do this in this formal summit. Can they do it?

ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, that is a big question. And Angela Merkel has just made an impassioned speech at German parliament appealing to lawmakers to find a tough, but humane migration and asylum secret policy not just for Germany but for all of the E.U. Now it was quite a speech. It was one of the most emotional she has ever delivered just now. She only just finished it, but she basically laid the ground work for what is to come at the summit. She said listen, it's not likely we'll get a wide all-encompassing summit. However, there has to be some sort of traction to resolve the migration issue and she really boiled down to this one point. She said, you know, the issue of immigration is the one issue that could make or break or the E.U. that could split the European and this is why it is such an important issue to her.

[03:40:00] It's more than just the political crisis she faces at home with the conservative hardliners and her own party threatening to break up the coalition government unless you crack down on migration. She has said now I've got to go to the summit and try and begin to revolve and basically undo this knot of migration. It's going to be very tough work for her. But she believes it is possible if they could start bilateral agreement. She has friends and you know, this as a partner. Now she needs to convince certain countries such as Greece, Spain, Italy being the most difficult to sign on to an asylum policy that allows people to be quickly and efficiently process bit also once they are rejected in Europe to be brought back to their countries of origin. It could be very tough negotiating.

She laid out the ground work in a speech saying we might not get an ultimate solution to this issue. However we are going to try. It was really quite a powerful speech Rosemary.

CHURCH: Yes. The problem of course is we are seeing divisions for Angela Merkel there in Germany. We are seeing divisions with other countries and on the whole, when you look at this, the problem is none of these European countries want any of these people.

SHUBERT: Well, what we saw with the case of the life line which you mentioned before which was this aged ship that had rescued more than 200 asylum seekers and then was seeking entry into Malta or Italy. Very -- hardly any European countries had volunteered to take the asylum seekers on board. And this is really a microcosm of the wider problem.

Asylum seekers trying to make it to Europe. Once they land on southern shores, they try to reach to more wealthier northern countries, but it becomes a case of political hot potato. One country passing the problem to another. Now what Merkel has said is listen, we have got to all solve this problem in the E.U. or it threatens to split the union apart. And that is why in many ways Merkel is the only leader that can try and resolve this issue. Because she was the one that in many ways the accidental architect of the migration policy, ever since the refugee crisis of 2015. So she has to find a way to kind of, you know, knit those riffs in the E.U., make deals with critical E.U. states on this and try and find a solution within the next 40 hours.

CHURCH: It is quite a challenge for Angela Merkel and the other nations there. Atika Shubert, thanks so much for bringing us up to date on the situation there from Berlin. We appreciate it. We will take a short break here, but coming up, frightened families wait and hope. But time is running out for the 13 people believed trapped in a waterlogged cave in highland. We will have the very latest for you when we come back.

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CHURCH: Now to the desperate search for 12 teenaged football players and their coach believed trapped in a flooded cave in Thailand. Search operation above ground to find cave entrances are ongoing. But the regional governor says dive operations in the cave have been halted due to heavy rains and more flooding. The U.S. and the U.K. have sent in teams to help. CNN's Anna Coren reports.

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ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The agonizing sound with heart broken mothers who's don't know if their sons will ever return home. They've been waiting since Saturday in the mountains of Chiang Rai in northern Thailand for any news. After their 12 boys, all members of the local Wild Boar Academy Football Club venture into the Tham Luang Nang Non cave with a 25 years old coach after a football training. Their bikes, backpacks, and soccer kit where found at the cave's entrance, setting off alarm bells for parents and authorities.

The monsoon season has just begun and Thai officials believe heavy rain forced flash flooding inside the cave. After the team entered the 10 kilometer long complex. It includes as many as 40 chambers and narrow passage ways. A massive search effort has been mobilized involving the army, navy and volunteers. With up to 1,000 personal and during challenging weather condition and terrain to locate the football team.

The most difficult mission to navigate caves with endless amount of muddy water. Large pumps are being used to drain the floodwaters, but divers working in shifts around the clock are restricted by the oxygen tanks, that only last three hours. And underwater road watch is also being brought in. The U.S. and U.K. governments has sent experts with special equipment to assist.

We're trying our best says the governor. Yesterday we say every minute is valuable. Today half a minute or every ten seconds is valuable. Above ground, helicopters and drones with thermal imaging will try to detect any heat inside the caves. While trekking teams are battling Mother Nature, making their way through the persistent rain, mud and thick jungle searching for air holes and access points on the roof of the cave, but despite the odds of a young football team and their coach surviving this horrendous ordeal, to (inaudible) believes his son, 14 year-old (inaudible) will be found alive.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (TRANSLATOR): I'm still confident I'm 1 million percent he says with such conviction. My son is strong, he is an athlete and he will survive.

COREN: The interior minister is also confident these nightmare that has captured the hearts and prayers of the nation won't end in tragedy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (TRANSLATOR): We believe they're still alive as they have food, he says. They are also sporty guys and have visited this caves several times so they know the cave well.

COREN: For these parents, they're not leaving anything to chance into this ritual and offering of food and flowers is to the guardian spirits to guide their sons out of the cave. Come to your mama, come to your papa, they chant. Words they hope they can soon say as they will bring their children home. Anna Coren, CNN, Hong Kong.

(END VIDEO)

CHURCH: So agonizing to watch. Joining me now from Hong Kong, CNN's Kristie Lu Stout. So, Kristie, earlier, we heard the dive operations had been halted due to the rain and flooding. What's the latest on that and what's the U.S. Pacific Command doing to help with this rescue operations above ground.

KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes it has been already over five days since this team of teenage football players went missing as well as their 25 year old coach and still no sign of them at all. Leaving to this anguish and scenes that we saw just now in Anna's report. Now U.S. Pacific Command as you mentioned, they have arrived -- they arrived last night from Okinawa, they are on site with about 30 personnel members all believed to be experts in disaster relief management. They joined the team of British experts already on site including three cave diving experts.

Earlier, CNN managed to speak to a representative of the U.S. military who is on site there at the cave and Jessica Tait told us a little bit more about the delicate and the urgent task at hand.

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[03:50:09] JESSICA TAIT, PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICER U.S. AIR FORCE: We're able to be sustain 24 operations. We are her with advice just this (inaudible). The folks we have here they are composed of Para rescue men. We have a survival specialist as well as support personnel. We are really here to provide the expertise and that capability, knowledge to our Thai partners. Obviously, they've been providing a tremendous effort for the past four days on, you know, the rest of the attempt. (END VIDEO CLIP)

LU STOUT: Already immense search effort has been under way since Saturday when the boys went missing. We know that 840 members of the Thai military are involved as well as Thai Navy SEALS and volunteers and they are using a variety of disaster relief equipment including helicopters, excavators, you saw the use of underwater robots in that package report by Anna Coren just now, all in a bid to try to find these missing team.

To try to enter through the main entrance of the cave as well as through a variety of vertical air shafts that had been drilled in from the top down. But this team, they are against so much, they are against time, they are against rising water. Which they're trying to pump out of this complex cave system. They're also up against the sporadic rain. It is monsoon season, there in Thailand. And every time it rains they have to stop and put a pause on the rescue operation that means it cannot deploy the helicopters nor they can deploy the drones that are equip with thermal imaging detectors to be able to look for any signs of life. And yet, five days on, the search effort still goes on. And we are still waiting for answers. Rosemary.

CHURCH: Yes. So many challenges these teams doing everything they possibly can to try to locate these boys and their coach. What are authorities saying about the likelihood of whether they are all still alive? As you mentioned, five days we're talking about here.

LU STOUT: Yes. Which is such an important question, but such a delicate question to ask. Earlier today in fact, the governor did address that saying that he was hopeful that the boys would be found. He believes that they could be in the area of this complex caves system in northern Thailand that is known as Pataya Beach or complex three. So that is where this mission is focusing on right now.

And officials there are still hopeful because of a couple of factors. Number one, when the boys and their coach entered the cave system on Saturday it's believed they brought in some food, some drinking water along with them. And also in the last few days, the disaster relief workers they have been dropping down food and supplies and clean drinking water through these vertical shafts in a bit to somehow get this much needed supplies to the boys. But again no answers, the wait goes on. And maybe be found. We need a miracle here, back to you.

CHURCH: We do need a miracle. These boys at least do know these guys very well and hopefully this will end well. Kristie Lou Stout, thank you so much. We appreciate that. Well, CNN Newsroom continues after this short break.

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CHURCH: Melania Trump is set to travel in the next few days to visit immigration facilities. Her trip to the U.S./Mexico border area last week to see migrant children who are being detained was overshadowed by a controversial clothing choice she made. Will the U.S. first lady make a fashion statement this time? Here is Jeanne Moos. (BEGIN VIDEO)

[03:50:00] JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Apparently a lot of people care about Melania Trump's, I really don't care, do you, jacket. And many are offering tips on what Melania should wear next, suggestions like November is coming and help me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A jacket that says wa-wa.

MOOS: If she still doesn't care, I feel roughly the same as last week.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She is officially the Marie Antoinette of this administration to just say let them eat cake.

MOOS: Tweeted one Twitter user, please wear this next time, a less drama t-shirt by Zara. The company that made Melania original jacket. The $39 item is no longer available, but on the eBay, a couple of women who purchased the exact same jacket awhile back were getting bids up to $895. The Democrats are raising money, selling a t-shirt playing off Melania's outfit. We care, we vote. Do you? Party officials say it's by far the best selling DNC store item of all time.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is kind of sweet she made a jacket out of her and Donald's wedding vows. That is really cool.

MOOS: A graffiti artist on Esty is hand painting slogans like give back the kids and selling them for $125. Of course, Melania's jacket has its own Twitter account, spitting out pithy tweets like the devil wears Zara. The Frist Lady learned that her first trip that jackets speak louder than words. Variations have jumped onto the backs of cartoon characters.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is the President now tweeting on to his wife's clothes?

MOOS: Didn't anyone have Melania's back to protect her from inspiring flak with her own jacket. My husband made a deal with North Korea and all he got was this is lousy jacket. Jeannie Moos, CNN.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: President Trump was going through his closet like, where in the hell is my coat?

MOOS: New York.

(END VIDEO)

CHURCH: Thank you so much for joining us. I'm Rosemary Church. Remember to connect with me anytime on Twitter. Love to hear from you. The news continues now with Hannah Vaughan Jones in London. You're watching CNN. Have a great day.

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