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GOP Nervous Over Trump's New Threat of Sanctions on China; Jordan Defends Himself Against Claims He Knew of Sexual Abuse; Kavanaugh Meets with GOP but Will Democrats Come on Board; Trump Criticizes NATO, Says Germany Controlled by Russia. Aired 11:30-12p ET

Aired July 11, 2018 - 11:30   ET



[11:33:02] KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: I know I've asked this before, but I'll ask it again, is this what a trade war looks like? The Trump administration now preparing a new round of tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods and China is threatening to retaliate. This on the heels of the U.S. slapping a 25 percent tariff on Chinese goods worth $34 billion last week and China immediately retaliating. Are you sensing a theme here? The move making members of the president's own party nervous.

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says it could mean disaster for his state.


SEN. CHUCK GRASSLEY, (R), IOWA: He's negotiating, I think, as a business person. If he takes the competitor to the brink and he doesn't go over the brink, we're going to get a better deal. But if he goes over the brink, it's catastrophic. Right now, on corn and soybeans in my state, it is catastrophic with the dramatic drops in prices we've had.


BOLDUAN: CNN Money editor-at-large, Richard Quest, is live from the New York Stock Exchange with much more.

Richard, give me some perspective. What's going on with this new round of tariffs that are proposed?

RICHARD QUEST, CNN MONEY EDITOR-AT-LARGE: It is the United States responding to China responding. The moment China said that it was going to impose tariffs on the first round, the U.S. said, you do that, we'll do this. And then the Chinese said, well, if you do this, we'll do that. And that's the position we're at, at the moment. We're at the second round of tariffs, waiting now to come in to force and the various processes taking place. It is serious, it could get calamitous. It is not only the Chinese situation, but there's also the issue with the Europeans where we've got exactly the same -- exactly the same situation but this time on the question of automobiles. The U.S. has said, you've retaliated, we're going to hit automobiles. The E.U. said, you hit automobiles, we'll hit $250 billion of yours.

Let me answer your question. I'll keep it really simple, Kate. Your first question, is this what a trade war looks like? Yes. I would say we're only at the skirmish section.

[11:35:12] BOLDUAN: Skirmish? It sounds painful. What's the next level after skirmish if you're already here? Honestly.

QUEST: You want to know? You want to know?

BOLDUAN: No, I don't. But I do.

QUEST: I'll show you. I'm going to show you. This is what the next stage looks like. This is what the next stage looks like as the market starts to react. The market has held its nerve because the U.S. economy is so big, so vast and so powerful. But I promise you, if the trade tariffs continue that -- look at Caterpillar. Caterpillar, one of the largest exporters, one of the most-important companies in the U.S. economy, down a further 2.7 percent. United Airlines, admittedly on different factors, off 3.4 percent. Wherever you look at the moment, you are seeing the damage that is being done. Remember the important thing about a trade war. The gains are very limited. They are those industries that benefit. The losses are widespread and diversified throughout the wider economy.

We'll talk about that on CNN "MARKETS NOW LIVE," which comes from the stock exchange, AT

BOLDUAN: The gains limited, the pains widespread and hitting everyone.

Richard, thank you so much. It's great to see you.

QUEST: Thank you.

BOLDUAN: Coming us for us, Congressman Jim Jordan defending himself against allegations that he ignored sexual abuse as a coach at Ohio State. What he is saying now, next.


[11:41:02] BOLDUAN: A Congressman facing tough questions, a congressman not backing down. Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan defending himself once again against charges that he ignored sexual abuse allegations while he was an assistant coach at Ohio University.

Here's Jim Jordan today.


REP. JIM JORDAN, (R), OHIO: I'm telling the truth. Look, I stood up to the speaker of the House from my home state. Stood up to the IRS and have stood up to the FBI. To think that I would not stand up for my athletes is ridiculous.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BOLDUAN: CNN's Sunlen Serfaty is on Capitol Hill with more.

Sunlen, Speaker Ryan is taking questions on this for the first time. He's also defending Jordan. What did he say?

SUNLEN SERFATY, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right, he is, Kate. He called Jim Jordan today a man of integrity, a man of honesty. This is notable because this is the first times we are hearing directly from speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, about this scandal, about Jim Jordan as he's really engulfed in this scandal for the last week now.

I asked Paul Ryan this morning on, specifically, his response to all these mounting allegations that seem to be growing larger by the day for Jim Jordan. But also, what role, if any, Congress has to look in to the wrongdoing specifically of Jim Jordan. And here's how he responded.


REP. PAUL RYAN, (R-WI), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: I called to check in on Jim this weekend and also talk about the Ohio State matter. Jim Jordan is a friend of mine. We don't always agree with each other over the years, but I've always known Jim Jordan to be a man of honesty and a man of integrity.

I also want to make sure that Ohio State conducts the review of this doctor and what he did. That's important so the campuses are safe. I'm glad Jim is supporting that review.


SERFATY: Paul Ryan's words there coming at a very critical time for Jim Jordan when there's questions over how this scandal will influence his political future.

The Republican conference, Kate, did meet behind closed doors this morning. During that meeting, only one congressman brought up the scandal in the context of, we need to rally around our colleague. Certainly, talking to numerous lawmakers coming out of that meeting, they all came to his defense. Not only came to his defense, but today really seemed to go on offense, really trying to downplay the validity of these allegations that are, indeed, mounting. Many colleagues calling them hearsay, saying there's no concrete evidence to the allegation. Of course, that stands in contrast to CNN's reporting coming directly from these wrestlers saying that, yes, they believe that Jim Jordan not only knew, but did not do anything to address it at the time that he was assistant wrestler at the university -- Kate?

BOLDUAN: Sunlen, thank you so much.

Coming up, Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, is back on Capitol Hill with some much-needed face time with the Senators who will decide his future. He's meeting with Republicans today. But are there any signs any Democrats could be getting on board? Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen joins me next. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[11:47:37] BOLDUAN: It's day two of some of the most critical work Trump Supreme Court nominee can do ahead of his confirmation hearing, meeting behind closed doors with Senators who will ultimately vote on Brett Kavanaugh's future. Today, Kavanaugh is meeting with Judiciary Committee members, including Lindsey Graham, John Cornyn, Orrin Hatch. Listen to this.




BOLDUAN: Three or so down, only 90-plus to go. The map already tells us Brett Kavanaugh needs every Republican vote he can get. But is there any room for a Democrat to vote yes, as well?

Let's find out. Joining me right now, Democratic Senator from New Hampshire, Jeanne Shaheen.

Senator, thanks for coming in.

SEN. JEANNE SHAHEEN, (D), NEW HAMPSHIRE: Nice to be with you.

BOLDUAN: Thank you.

In your statement after Kavanaugh was announced, you said, "I will only two Judge Kavanaugh's nomination if he protects the civil rights and freedoms enshrined in the Constitution."

Is that a real opening for you to vote yes, Senator?

SHAHEEN: As you know, Judge Kavanaugh has a long record of 12 years on the D.C. circuit. He's done a lot of writings during that time. I think we are just beginning to find out what's in some of those. Before that, he was a political operative. He worked in the Bush White House. He was involved with Ken Starr in that investigation. He was involved with the Elian Gonzalez situation. So he has a lot in his history that I'm interested in seeing more about and seeing where he has stood on certain issues.

I am troubled by his opposition to health care, to the Affordable Care Act. I'm troubled by his -- what I expect to be his stance on women's reproductive freedom. So there are a lot of questions that I want to ask him.

But I think we need to have a full process where we have a chance to listen to what this nominee has to say, to learn about his record, and then to make a decision. I think we need to go back to the days when people tried to look at nominees and see who -- whether they really are mainstream, whether they really can respect the precedent that's in the Constitution -- or in the Supreme Court decisions, and really uphold, as Judge Kavanaugh said he wanted to do, the Constitution. [11:50:06] BOLDUAN: When you have Democrats that they've already say they've heard enough, seen enough, and are already a hard no, do you say they're wrong?

SHAHEEN: No. Everybody has to make up their own minds. That's why I intend to do that.

BOLDUAN: Let me ask you about NATO. The president is at the NATO summit right now. Already this morning, the president has criticized NATO and taken on Germany specifically, saying that Germany is a captive of Russia that's being totally controlled by Russia. This has to do with the major gas pipeline deal that they struck with Russia. You're about to head over there. What do you say to that?

SHAHEEN: Well, I was disappointed to hear his real attack against Germany. I think Chancellor Merkel has been very important in Europe in keeping the sanctions on Russia. I don't support this deal for the gas pipeline with Germany. I think that's not in Europe's interest, long-term. But I think we have to recognize the important role that Germany has played and the important role that NATO has played. And I'm going to go over there with Senator Thom Tillis so we have a bipartisan delegation. We're going to bring with us two resolutions. One that passed the Senate last night in support of NATO. And the other that's going to pass the Foreign Relations Committee this afternoon. Again, in support of NATO, to remind our NATO allies that we, in the Senate, and we, in Congress, recognize the importance of the alliance and its contribution to our own national security here in the United States.

BOLDUAN: So, Senator, are you heading over there to say, don't listen to the president, listen to us?

SHAHEEN: No, we're heading over there to remind our allies that there's a lot of support for NATO. They have heard that from Secretary Mattis. They've heard that from Secretary Pompeo.

BOLDUAN: You don't think the president is doing that?

SHAHEEN: I think it's important to continue to endorse the trans- Atlantic relationship and the work that NATO has done. I think the president has left some questions in the minds of some people about where he stands on NATO.

BOLDUAN: On that fine point, though, that Germany is captive to Russia. I mean, Angela Merkel spoke out about it, saying -- offering up a bit of a history lesson, saying she was born in the Soviet Union and she does not believe that to be the case. How are you going to answer that when and if allies come to you and ask you for your position on that while you're at the NATO summit?

SHAHEEN: I don't believe that Germany is a captive of Russia either. The whole point of NATO -- one of the points right now, is to ensure that we have a strong defense against Russian aggression. We've seen what they've done in the Ukraine, what they've done in Georgia, their seizing of Crimea, their threats against the Baltic nations and against other countries in the Balkans and Eastern Europe. So there are very real threats from Russia. We saw what they did in our own elections, what they tried to do to interrupt the elections in France, in Germany and with Brexit. So Russia is a real threat.

NATO is one of those alliances that stands against Russia. And we need to be very clear that we support NATO, that we want to make sure that resources are there. And I appreciate what President Trump has done to remind the NATO countries that they need to comply with their 2 percent requirement. They're working on that. They need to continue to work on that.

BOLDUAN: He said that they should be paying up immediately, is how they put it, not wait until 2024. Do you think he's right for hammering home on this?

SHAHEEN: Well, again, there was an agreement that was reached among the NATO countries. Everybody agreed to that.


SHAHEEN: They are continuing to ramp up their defense spending. And I think that's appropriate. They are continuing to provide troops, as we're looking at our joint defenses across the Baltics and Eastern Europe in Poland. So I think we need to continue those efforts and support them and applaud what's been done and continue to urge them to keep increasing their defense spending because the threat from Russia is very real. And I hope the president, when he sees Vladimir Putin on Monday, will make that very clear to him that we believe they are a threat. I appreciate the need to communicate but they need to change their aggressive behavior.

BOLDUAN: Do you have any confidence that he will speak to Russia as he has spoken about Germany?

SHAHEEN: Well, so far, he hasn't seemed to suggest that he will do that, but I think we need to continue to remind him of the importance of that.

BOLDUAN: Senator Jeanne Shaheen --


SHAHEEN: Russia is not our friend.

BOLDUAN: Donald Trump says, we should all get along, at least when talking about Russia. Let's see what comes from the meeting.

Senator, thanks for coming in. I appreciate it.

SHAHEEN: Thank you.

[11:55:06] BOLDUAN: We'll be interested to see what you learn when you head over to Brussels. Appreciate your time.

Coming up for us, from insults and pushback to smiles and handshakes at the NATO summit, more on the back and forth and back again maybe between President Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)