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NEW DAY SATURDAY
President Calls for Investigation to Reveal Anonymous Op-ed Writer; Polygraph Tests May be Used at White House; Barack Obama Breaks his Silence; Police Seek Warrant for Officer After Fatal Shooting; New Video of Deadly Cincinnati Shooting Released; Elizabeth Warren Calls for Use of 25TH Amendment to Remove Trump; Trump Considering Taking Money from U.S. Military to Fund Border Wall; Four Hundred and Sixteen Migrant Children Remain in Care of U.S. Federal Government; Tiger Calls Nike's Kaepernick Ad "Beautiful". Aired 6-7a ET
Aired September 8, 2018 - 06:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: For the sake of our national security, the "New York Times" should publish his name at once.
KELLYANN CONWAY, COUNSELOR OF THE PRESIDENT: The president just today said he believes it's somebody in national security.
TRUMP: What they've done is virtually, you know, it's treason.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This comes as Trump is now demanding the attorney general launch an investigation to uncover the identity of the person.
BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We do not pressure the attorney general or the FBI to use the criminal justice system as a cudgel to punish our political opponents. It did not start with Donald Trump; he is a symptom, not the cause.
TRUMP: I'm sorry. I watched it, but I fell asleep.
ANNOUNCER: this is "New Day Weekend" with Victor Blackwell and Christi Paul.
VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN HOST: Good morning to you. There are lots of theories this morning about who wrote that anonymous "New York Times" op-ed critical of the president, but now aides to the president think they have their search narrowed down to just a few individuals.
CHRISTI PAUL, CNN HOST: Yes, a source close to the White House says the president is obsessed with finding out who it is, even his Chief of Staff, John Kelly, tells him you've got to let it go.
BLACKWELL: So after a week that saw strong job numbers and a Supreme Court nominee one step closer to confirmation, President Trump is telling reporters he thinks exposing to the op-ed writer is a matter of national security, and he wants Attorney General Jeff Sessions to look into it.
TRUMP: Supposing I have a high-level national security and he has get a clearance -- we talk about security clearances a lot recently -- and he goes into a high-level meeting concerning China or Russia or North Korea or something, and this guy goes in, I don't want him at those meetings.
PAUL: All right, joining us now live from the White House, CNN White House Reporter Jeremy Diamond. Good morning to you, Jeremy. What are you hearing this morning?
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN White House REPORTER: Good morning. Well, the president still fuming, clearly, about this anonymous op-ed written by a senior administration official in the "New York Times," but really, it's this one-two punch of the "New York Times" op-ed and this new bombshell book by Bob Woodward which paints an equally dismal picture of President Donald Trump and his ability to lead the country. And the president now appears to be taking things a step further, saying that he wants the Department of Justice, his Attorney General Jeff Sessions, to investigate this matter. This would, of course, be a serious escalation of the search that we have already heard is under way at the White House.
A source close to the White House saying that they have narrowed this down to three individuals who they believe wrote this op-ed, but the White House has yet to identify any crimes that they believe were committed that would warrant such a Department of Justice investigation, and the "New York Times" has responded in a statement, writing, "we're confident that the Department of Justice understands that the First Amendment protects all American citizens and that it would not participate in such a blatant abuse of government power."
Now, despite the president's words about an investigation and the ongoing search going on here at the White House, counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway told our CNN's Christiane Amanpour yesterday that she believes the anonymous op-ed writer about suss himself or herself out.
KELLYANNE CONWAY, COUNSELOR TO THE PRESIDENT: I'm not interested in an investigation of this. I guess those who are investigating, great. I really hope they find the person. I believe the person will suss him or herself out though because that's usually what happens, people brag to the wrong person. They brag that they did this or they did that because they - I assume part of this, isn't the goal here not with the op-ed pretends the goal is Christiane. Isn't the goal here really to sow chaos and get us all suspicious of each other....
AMANPOUR: Is that what's happening? Are you all getting suspicious of each other?
CONWAY: No, that isn't what happened.
DIAMOND: Now, while we wait for that, the president is here at the White House today. He has no public events on his schedule, which could leave time for plenty of tweeting. We'll keep you guys posted.
PAUL: All righty. Jeremy Diamond, thank you so much. Appreciate it.
BLACKWELL: All right, the question, can, should the Justice Department investigate this? Joining me now to discuss, Errol Louis, CNN Political Commentator and Political Anchor for Spectrum News; Joey Jackson, CNN Legal Analyst and Criminal Defense Attorney; and Tim Naftali, historian and former director of the Nixon Presidential Library.
Gentlemen, welcome back to each and every one. I want to start with you, Errol, and this potential investigation by the Department of Justice. Attorney General Sessions said just 2 1/2 weeks ago that his department will not be influenced by political considerations. Is this one or is this something else?
ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, until they change some of the facts or some of what has been released so far, I don't see any crime whatsoever.
I mean, what statute has been broken? What crime has been committed? It's not pleasant. It's not fun, but if people feel like gossiping about what goes on inside of the White House, unless it's classified information, there is no crime. Unless it's, say, military chain of command, so if there's somebody in there who is specifically forbidden under the uniform code that the military has to follow, maybe you could find something. But even then it's not the Department of Justice's job to sort of figure all of that out. So, unless the president has got some other way to find them, I don't know if the Department of Justice is going to be available to him to find his political enemies.
BLACKWELL: So, Joey, we heard midweek, we heard from Senator Rand Paul, suggesting that there should be lie detector tests. We now know that the president's advisers have, or at least are discussing the potential for those. I just wonder, what is an employee's legal recourse if the government comes to them, their boss says you now have to submit yourself to this polygraph test, and you don't want to do it?
JOEY JACKSON, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Good morning to you and all. The recourse is to do it or resign. You know, I find it very interesting, just to backtrack momentarily, Victor... BLACKWELL: Yes.
JACKSON: ... that this is the story, right? The story is, is there a crime, is there not a crime? Who's the mole in the White House? What's going on in the White House? Are they a coward, are they not a coward? This is the deflector in chief at his best. This is the strategy that is employed for everything. The Mueller investigation, it's a perjury trap. Everything is spun around to what else is the critical issue. The critical issue and the story here is the fact that there's a president that doesn't even have the confidence of people who work for him, right?
This is not an attack that's coming from Democrats or these leftists. It's an attack that's coming from within, and the op-ed was riveting in that regard. But instead, the president speaks to, what Errol was speaking to before in response to your question, is it a national security? Was there a crime committed? That's not the point and now it gets to the issue of the president is fuming, so he wants to interrogate everyone. He wants to weed out who it is and who it's not, and people saying, don't do this, because it's going to build to the story, but yet, he persists.
It's just unbelievable how he distracts from the major game. The fact is, is are you fit to serve? We should be talking about Amendment 25 and the removal provisions in the amendment. Instead, he is brilliant at just shifting the whole thing. But in response to the specific question you asked me, an employee comes in, and they're either going to get polygraphed or they're going to say you know what, Mr. President, here's my resignation, good bye.
BLACKWELL: Tim, to you, and I think we have to from your context - your perspective as a presidential historian -- Joey makes a strong point there, that the White House has spent a lot of energy focused on who wrote it, the motives behind writing it, even the denials from more than two dozen senior officials now denying it. No one goes to is there a two-track government? Are the president's senior officials flouting his directives and doing what they think is in the best interests of the country? We didn't even see much of that defense from Nikki Haley in the piece that she wrote this weekend.
TIM NAFTALI, HISTORIAN AND FORMER DIRECTOR OF THE NIXON PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY: Well, I mean, look, we've actually seen for some time that there is a tension between the more professional side of the U.S. government and foreign policy and the White House. We've seen that with regard to Russia, where on the one hand, we are placing sanctions on Russia while the president himself is talking as if Vladimir Putin is a dear friend of the United States, or at least is someone who can be trusted. So, we have seen in effect a two-tier government.
What's really unprecedented here is the fact that this opponent of the government is going public, not with her name or his name, but the very fact of their resistance or their thwarting of the darker impulses of the Trump Administration, that that is being made public. That is unprecedented. In the Nixon period, we had a number of public servants who did their very best to slow walk or thwart efforts by President Nixon to do things that are unconstitutional or in some cases criminal, but they did it in secret. In fact, we only learned about their activities either when they resigned, as in the case of Attorney General Elliott Richardson, or later.
The fact that this op-ed piece has come out in real time is really unprecedented, and it's not surprising that the White House is taking it seriously, not because, as Errol mentioned, that there's any reason to believe that there's been a violation -- a criminal violation -- but because this is very embarrassing, very embarrassing for the president.
BLACKWELL: Errol, I was wondering this morning preparing for the show, what does this, as we learn more about the two track government as this op-ed writer calls it. What does this portend for the Chief of Staff? What does this mean for General Kelly and especially we're days now from getting all the details of Bob Woodward's book, or does it matter? Does it matter who is in that office next to the president, if this is how the president leads from the top?
LOUIS: Well, General Kelly has one of the toughest jobs in government, and what's already been disclosed -- and it's not -- now, we have to keep in mind, it's not just the anonymous writer, it's not just Bob Woodward. There have been contemporaneous reports from a number of reliable sources, including CNN, that say pretty much that he's kind of on the outs, that he has made disparaging remarks about the president, that there's chaos within the White House, that he was specifically hired to try and reorganize.
And to that extent, it doesn't look like he's going to be around very much longer, but to get to your point, yeah, there's chaos in the White House. They don't have a management structure that works. It's very interesting. If you look back at the way Donald Trump in some of his previous books talked about how he runs the Trump organization, kind of coming in, he almost compares it to a jazz jam session, he kind of comes in without an agenda and just handles things as they pop up during the day. He clearly has imported that style into one workplace where it absolutely does not work, and that is the White House.
BLACKWELL: Tim, one last one to you. Joey, you're coming back next hour, that's why I'm going back to Tim, but a source tells CNN that the president shouted out, "get Hope Hicks back here!" Right? He's unhappy with how his communications director, Bill Shine, is responding or has led the response to this new Bob Woodward book "Fear." But, we at the point of Hope Hicks' tenure in the office were dealing with just "Fire and Fury" and those reports Errol talked about. We've now been through "Fire and Fury," "Unhinged," the op-ed, this new book that's coming. It's not that there's so much fighting a single author, but they're fighting a narrative here.
NAFTALI: Well, they're not just fighting a narrative. This is -- this White House is the leakiest White House in the modern era. They're not just fighting a narrative, they're fighting the fact that the president, despite all the firing that has gone on in this White House, the president can't get a group of people around him who are completely loyal to him in the sense that they're willing to cover everything up for him. He still has people close to him who are willing to share with the American people the impulsiveness and the unsteady hand that is at the center of our executive, and that is a problem for the president.
BLACKWELL: Tim Naftali, Joey Jackson, Errol Louis, thank you.
NAFTALI: Thank you.
LOUIS: Thank you.
JACKSON: Thank you.
PAUL: And former Trump campaign aid, George Papadopoulos will spend 14 days in prison for lying about his contacts with people connected to Russia during the 2016 campaign. Papadopoulos will also have 12 months of supervised release, serve 200 hours of community service, pay a $9,500 fine. You can hear from him, himself in a CNN special report "The Mysterious Case of George Padopoulos," It's airing tonight at 8:00 p.m. Eastern here on CNN.
President Trump's former fixer says he wants his money back! Talking about Michael Cohen, of course who says he wants to tear up that nondisclosure agreement he reached with adult film star Stormy Daniels in the months prior to the 2016 election. Revoking the agreement would require Daniels to pay back that $130,000 that she received to stay silent about an alleged affair with then presidential candidate Donald Trump. Now, last month, Cohen pleaded guilty to charges related to that payment. Daniels' lawyer says, yeah, she's willing to repay the money if the court allows Cohen and Trump to be deposed and rules in her favor in the case.
BLACKWELL: former President Barack Obama is calling out the current president by name. Coming up, his tough message to voters ahead of the midterm elections.
PAUL: Also, Dallas police say an off-duty officer walked into the wrong apartment and shot and killed her neighbor. How did that happen?
BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The claim that everything will turn out okay because there are people inside the White House who secretly aren't following the president's orders, that is not a check -- I'm being serious here -- that's not how our democracy's supposed to work. These people aren't elected. They're not accountable. They're not doing us a service by actively promoting 90 percent of the crazy stuff that's coming out of this White House, and then saying, don't worry, we're preventing the other 10 percent.
PAUL: Pretty stinging rebuke there from former President Barack Obama as he hit the campaign trail for the first time since leaving office. Errol Louis and Tim Naftali back with us. Thank you for sticking around. I want to go back actually to something that George W. Bush said in an interview back in 2014, because this, what we're seeing here, what we saw in the last 24 hours, is a pretty rare moment. But George W. Bush, in an interview in 2014 said, "I don't think it's good for the country to have a former president undermine a current president. I think it's bad for the presidency, for that matter."
It is rare to see a president going after his predecessor. We did not see that from President Bush. In fact, when he left office, he said I'm not going to do that. He said it very clearly. Are there moments, though, Tim, are there moments where it is valid, where it's helpful, or does it undermine the presidency as President Bush said?
NAFTALI: Well, I mean, I think that there is sort of a norm that President George W. Bush was mentioning, which is that, indeed, former presidents tend not to criticize the incumbent president. There have been moments where former presidents have criticized their successors. Dwight Eisenhower criticized the domestic policy of John F. Kennedy. He didn't attack his foreign policy, but he did criticize the government spending.
George H.W. Bush made a few critical remarks about some aspects of Bill Clinton's foreign policy. It's the nature of the attacks that President Obama launched yesterday, which is really unprecedented in that he was actually getting at, or at least implying the very fitness of this presidency and of this president. So, it's a level of criticism that we've not ever seen before in modern times. Now, does that undermine the presidency? Well, we can have a debate over who is undermining the presidency, Donald J. Trump or former President Barack Obama.
There is no question that the nature of the presidency is under strain. Donald Trump himself has undermined norms of the presidency and the question is, does a former president have the right to say to the American people, look at what the incumbent, my successor, is doing. My successor is undermining the basic fabric of the presidency, and that's a debate that we Americans can have together.
PAUL: All right. Errol, you can take it away. Do you think that the former president has the right to say that?
LOUIS: Well, of course he has the right. I would question, however, the efficacy of it, the effectiveness of it. I am reminded that last month, and I think all of us have already forgotten, that President Obama, former President Obama came out and endorsed 81 candidates up and down the line for a bunch of local offices. We haven't heard a thing from him since. This is the president who lost about 1,000 local seats on his watch and really set the stage for the Trump presidency.
This is not done in coordination, as far as I can tell, with where the Democrats need to be in the last 60 days before the all-important midterm elections. so in some ways, he's kind of sounding off, but I would love to see him sort of stay on message, talk about health care, talk about the economy, talk about the issues that Democrats are running on in local districts, including some of the ones that he endorsed. But to simply come out and question the fitness of Donald Trump, I don't know if it's going to make much difference politically, frankly.
PAUL: Okay, so you're leading right into my next question, because Senator Lindsey Graham tweeted yesterday after this, he said, "The more President Barack Obama speaks about the good old years of his presidency, the more likely President Trump is to get re-elected. In fact, the best explanation of President Trump's victory are the results of the Obama presidency." he went on to talk about Obama's years dominated by, he said, higher taxes, slower growth, big government, broken military. Are Republicans happy to see Obama back in the mix here Errol?
LOUIS: I would say so. I mean this is not something that - the president himself, Donald Trump, said he slept through it. It made no difference. It didn't move the needle, you know we haven't got a sound bite out of it or a headline today. Again, no
particular follow-up; it doesn't seem to be linked to any kind of organizational strategy. So, politically, it's kind of a nothing burger in some regards.
PAUL: It seems like it, but let's look at some poll numbers from January, this past January, of favorable views of President Obama. They're strong; nonwhites, 80 precent, 18 to 35-year-olds 79 percent, women 72 percent, independents 66 percent, all people who have a favorable view of Barack Obama. With that said, Tim Naftali, how valuable is President Obama to Democrats right now?
NAFTALI: I believe the issue is going to be turnout, turnout, turnout, turnout. And Barack Obama is a proven master at getting Democrats to turn out to vote. And I can't see how it hurts Democrats to have Obama out on the campaign trail. The fact that Obama never left Donald Trump's tweet should be kept in mind. Donald Trump has never stopped attacking former President Obama. So, he's been using Obama to bring out his base, and now Obama is responding to bring out the Democratic base, for all those Democrats running in the midterms. So, I think that because turnout is so important, because midterm elections tend not to have the turnout, obviously, as general elections, President Obama, former President Obama is going to help Democrats.
PAUL: Errol, do you believe that and do you think that and do you think President Trump will do the same with his base again?
LOUIS: Look Tim's exactly right. This is the old Obama coalition, independents, women, young people, the communities of color. But here again, he's making the speech in Champaign, Urbana! There's no place less relevant to the midterms than downstate Illinois. I mean, he needs to go into the swing districts, into the areas.
You need to go into the I-4 corridor in Florida. He needs to help out Andrew Gillum, who's running for governor down there. He needs to make some trips into Atlanta, where you are, you know, where Stacy Abrams is fighting to become governor. He's got to sort of really rev this up and be a lot more strategic about it. It's not enough, I think, to sort of do a nostalgia tour for his old coalition and just as a final reminder, he could turn out the vote, but he turned out the vote for himself, for other people, he didn't do so much.
PAUL: All righty. And we should know that he is going to California later today. We'll see what that brings. Errol Louis, Tim Naftali, gentlemen, always so good to have you with us. Thank you.
BLACKWELL: So you remember, let's call it a dispute, over President Trump's inauguration crowds? Well, there's new information about the photos from that day. Listen to this. According to newly-released documents obtained by "The Guardian," a government photographer told investigators that he intentionally cropped the photos of the inauguration to remove empty spaces and make the audience look larger. He did so after the president requested a new set of pictures a day after the inauguration and in case you've forgotten it, you probably haven't, here's what former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said at the time.
SEAN SPICER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Photographs of the inaugural proceedings were intentionally framed in a way in one particular tweet to minimize the enormous support that it gathered on the National Mall. This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe.
BLACKWELL: To read the full story, go to cnn.com/politics.
PAUL: Well, do stay with us. In the wake of that controversial "New York Times" op-ed, Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren says she believes administration officials should use the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office if he's unfit to lead.
BLACKWELL: Plus, a Dallas police officer says she shot her neighbor after she mistook his apartment for her own, but now the department is seeking a manslaughter warrant for her arrest. That's next.
[06:30:00] CHRISTI PAUL, CO-HOST, NEW DAY SATURDAY: Just about 32 minutes past the hour on a Saturday morning, good to see you, I'm Christi Paul --
VICTOR BLACKWELL, CO-HOST, NEW DAY SATURDAY: I'm Victor Blackwell, good to be with you. Dallas police are now seeking a manslaughter warrant for an officer allegedly -- who allegedly killed her neighbor. The officer shot the 26-year-old man after she entered his apartment, allegedly mistaking it for her own.
PAUL: Andrea Lucia with Cnn affiliate "Ktvt" going to walk us through what's happened here and where we are now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Friends, I know we've come gathered together because pressed upon our hearts is the death of this young man.
ANDREA LUCIA, KTVT REPORTER (voice-over): At a candlelight vigil, the crowd called for an arrest.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And we're here to ask that this officer be treated like any other murder suspect.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The pop, you know, and it's just like, I mean, it's been ringing in my ear all day.
LUCIA: Lloyd Harvey and his girlfriend heard the gunshot that killed their next door neighbor, Botham Jean.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm shocked, this is just insane that this would happen to someone so nice and kind.
LUCIA: Dallas police say the yet to be named officer who fired the shot was coming home from work and still in uniform when she mistook Jean's apartment for her own. Sources say she lived just one floor down.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right in front of his house, you have a red floor mat. Like it's a bright red floor mat. How do you think that that's your apartment?
RENEE HALL, CHIEF OF POLICE, DALLAS POLICE DEPARTMENT: Based on what we know right now, that warrant is for manslaughter.
LUCIA: Dallas Police Chief Renee Hall said due to the circumstances, she personally requested a warrant be obtained for the officer's arrest, and called on the Texas Rangers to conduct their own independent investigation.
HALL: We have ceased handling it under our normal officer-involved shooting protocol.
LUCIA: But with hours ticking away, activists have grown eager to see some sign of justice for Jean.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, he wasn't doing anything wrong, he wasn't trying to do anything wrong, but sit in his home trying to relax, getting ready for the next day of work.
PAUL: Well, police say the officer's blood is being tested now for drugs and alcohol.
BLACKWELL: We've got new video this morning from the fatal shooting in Cincinnati. Omar Enrique Santa Perez killed three men and injured two others in a building of his city's fountain square. Edited surveillance video shows the shooter in a white dressed shirt walking through the Fifth-Third's center's lobby as he shot off these bullets.
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BLACKWELL: Now, this is the body cam from a police officer as it shows outside of them after shooting the glass you see that's breaking. Investigators still are trying to find the motive for the shooting.
PAUL: Now, stay with us here because we're going to talk about Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren. She wants the senior administration officials to invoke the 25th Amendment if they believe President Trump cannot do his job. More fallout now from that explosive "New York Times" op ed.
[06:35:00] BLACKWELL: Plus, more than 400 migrant children taken from their parents are still in custody with the federal government -- of the federal government. The fight to reunite the families is an ongoing, uphill fight. Our political correspondent Tal Kopan will have the very latest.
[06:40:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
PAUL: Thanks for carving out some time for us here this morning. Listen, in the aftermath of that controversial "New York Times" op-ed from an anonymous administration official, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren is calling for the use of the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office. Listen to this.
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SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D), MASSACHUSETTS: If senior administration officials think that the president of the United States is not able to do his job, then they should invoke the 25th Amendment. The constitution provides for a procedure whenever the Vice President and senior officials think that the president can't do his job.
It does not provide that senior officials go around the president, pull documents off his desk, write anonymous op-eds and leak to Bob Woodward.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BLACKWELL: Well, no question, this suggestion is going to start a debate amongst many in Washington, and especially those who plan to go after the president for his office in 2020. Now, Warren is running for a second Senate term this year, but has not said if she will run for the White House.
All right, so, the question now is what exactly is the 25th Amendment, and when is, how is Congress supposed to use it?
PAUL: Cnn's senior political analyst John Avlon breaks it down for us here.
JOHN AVLON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Now, you might think the 25th Amendment which spells out presidential succession is an old concept, but it's not. The text is relatively recent, borne right after John F. Kennedy died, thought up by members of his administration including his brother Bobby who shuddered to think what might have happened that the president been only incapacitated in Dallas.
In fact, as recently as 1965, this station had no real plan for what to do if a president couldn't discharge his duties. The issue first came up way back in 1841 when William Henry Harrison died just a month after taking office. No one really knew what to call Vice President John Tyler.
Critics simply called him "your accidency". Four decades later, President James Garfield was shot and lingered incapacitated for more than two months. Afraid of causing a constitutional crisis, Vice President Chester A. Arthur of the really great sideburns(ph), avoided doing anything presidential and the government ground to a halt.
In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson had a stroke and his second wife, Edith, essentially ran the country for 18 months. By that point, the 25th Amendment was long overdue, but it took the Kennedy assassination to get it written. And it didn't get used by a president for another two decades when President Reagan had a 1985 surgery.
But it got its first real test two years later, that's when incoming Reagan Chief of Staff Howard Baker was urged to consider it after reports that Reagan was in mental decline. Baker agreed to observe the president for deficiencies and when he didn't find any, the 25th Amendment was never mentioned again in the Reagan White House.
It's been invoked just twice more, both by George W. Bush for colonoscopies, and that's really been it. So the question we're confronting today is whether the 25th Amendment could be used to remove a president who some feel as the unnamed White House writer puts it, is quote, "detrimental to the health of our Republic."
The short answer is, not easily. Remember, the amendment was written primarily to address physical incapacity, but it does include a section never used on removing a president deemed unfit, and that section reads like a Rube Goldberg machine.
Basically, it goes like this, the vice president, along with a majority of the cabinet can send a letter to the president pro tempore of the Senate and Speaker of the house, declaring that the president as former Senator Birch Bayh colorfully put it this, "nutty is a fruitcake". And then as soon as that letter's received, bam!
The president is out, the vice president becomes the acting president, but not so fast. The president can then write his own letter and send it back to Congress, saying he's feeling perfectly fine. After which the vice president and a majority of the cabinet still want him gone, they have to send another letter.
And once that happens, within three weeks, two-thirds of Congress must vote to declare the president unfit, otherwise, he becomes president again and the VP goes back to his old job, but presumably not for long. The odds of that happening, that the president's VP, the bulk of his cabinet and two-thirds of both houses of Congress would turn on him are incredibly long.
[06:45:00] So, while the 25th Amendment makes for some interesting history, the chances it gets written into President Trump's history are slim, to say the least.
BLACKWELL: All right, John, thank you with that. It's been months since the height of President Trump's crackdown on undocumented immigrants. More than 400 migrant children are still separated from their families. Next, we'll have the latest on the reunification efforts.
BLACKWELL: President Trump is certain that he will find the person who ripped him apart in the "New York Times".
PAUL: Yes, he did take a moment yesterday, however, to talk about his signature campaign promise, which is building a border wall between the United States and Mexico. He spoke to reporters aboard Air Force 1, and the president was asked if he'd consider using money from the U.S. military's budget to fund the wall if Congress doesn't pass a spending bill. This is an idea that he's floated before. Here's what he said.
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[06:50:00] DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have two options. We have military, we have Homeland Security. I'd rather get it through politically. Politically speaking, I'd rather get it from Congress. If we don't, I'm looking at that option very seriously.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
BLACKWELL: Well, since taking office, the Trump administration has tried to demand that Congress set aside money for the president's promised wall several times.
PAUL: Meanwhile, out of the thousands of migrant children who were torn apart from their families, there are 416 still in the care of the federal government right now.
BLACKWELL: It's been two months since a district court ordered that these children be reunited with their parents, and as the time continues to pass, the lasting effects of family separations are mounting. Cnn's Taco Pan has more on the legal battle they face.
TAL KOPAN, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Well, we're learning more about how many children remain separated from their parents in the ongoing fallout over the government's decision to separate families at the border this Summer. And the fact is, there are still hundreds who remain separated from their parents.
There are more than 400 who are still in government custody, and there are more than 200 who were released to someone besides their parent, perhaps a family member, whose status in terms of reunification with the parent who brought them is still unknown.
And the bulk of those children who are still waiting in government custody to find out their fate, most of those parents were deported. On Friday, we learned more about the process to find those parents, most of whom are in Central America.
From the lead attorney who has been representing many of these immigrants, that attorney just returned from a trip to Guatemala to see with its own eyes what that effort is like, and described the painstaking and heart-wrenching process to find these parents.
It can take days to reach some of these parents, he said. In other areas of Central America, the gangs have so much control, they've imposed a curfew at night so no one can go visit anyone else. And the parents work during the day, making it difficult to meet with them and gain their trust.
And he also described the process once these parents are reached, the heart-wrenching decision many of them are making to leave their children in the U.S. to pursue a chance to stay because they believe at the end of the day, it is just too dangerous for their child to return to them in their home country.
Now, this whole process is unfolding as the government is also trying to extend the length of time that they can keep families detained in immigration custody. The move comes as a proposed regulation that would nullify a decades-old court settlement that has set standards for the way that immigrant children must be treated by the government.
And in doing this regulation, they could circumvent the judge who has been overseeing those standards and the government would be able to set their own standards for how those children are treated, including holding those families for far longer than the current 20 days that are allowed.
Now, it remains to be seen if the judge in that case will allow these regulations to proceed. But for now, there's an attempt by the government to circumvent that court and extend the way that they can detain these families going forward. Tal Kopan, Cnn, Washington.
PAUL: Tal, thank you so much. Now, Serena Williams is going to look to make some history later today in New York, Andy Scholes is here with more.
ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS REPORTER: Yes, Christi, Serena looking for grand slam title number 24 today at the U.S. Open. Coming up, we'll hear from her 20-year-old opponent who considers Serena her idol. [06:55:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
BLACKWELL: The U.S. Open finals are set, Serena will take the court later today.
PAUL: Andy Scholes in New York for the U.S. Open finals with this morning's "BLEACHER REPORT", good morning.
SCHOLES: Hey, good morning, guys, you know, the story line of the U.S. Open has been the blazing heat the players have had to endure here in New York, but for the lucky four playing in the finals this weekend, it's actually going to be rather cool. So, I guess that's their reward for getting this far.
And Novak Djokovic making quick work of Kei Nishikori last night in the semi-finals. He won in straight sets to advance to his 7th U.S. open final. Now, his opponent will be Juan Martin del Potro from Argentina. Although Potro was beating Rafael Nadal when Nadal was forced to retire before the third set due to a knee injury.
Now, del Potro won the '09 U.S. Open, but has since battled many injuries himself. Djokovic and del Potro are going to square off tomorrow, 4:00 p.m. Eastern in the finals. Serena Williams, meanwhile, is going to take the court this afternoon at 4:00 Eastern as she tries to win her 24th Grand Slam title.
That would tie her with Margaret Court for the most all time. Now, her opponent is 20-year-old Naomi Osaka, who is playing her first Grand Slam final. And Osaka says this is a dream come true because Serena is her childhood hero.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NAOMI OSAKA, TENNIS PLAYER: Even when I was a little kid, I always dreamed that I would play Serena in a final of a Grand Slam. So, just the fact that it's happening is -- I'm very happy about it.
SERENA WILLIAMS, TENNIS PLAYER: This is the beginning, I'm not there yet, I'm on the climb still. Not only is my future bright, even though I'm not, you know, I'm not a spring chicken, but I still have a very bright future.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHOLES: Now, Serena turns 37 in a couple of weeks. Fun fact of the day, when Serena made her first Grand Slam appearance of her career, Osaka was 3 months old. Just think about that.
All right, Tiger Woods cooling off from his blazing start at the BMW Championship. He shot even par, now falling down the leader board. And after his round, Tiger was asked what he thought about the commercial everyone is talking about, Colin Kaepernick's new Nike ad.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIGER WOODS, GOLFER: I think that Nike is trying to, you know, get out ahead of it and trying to do something that's special, and I think they've done that. It's a beautiful spot, and some pretty powerful people in the spot.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHOLES: And that Nike ad, guys, continues to be one of the more polarizing ad campaigns we've seen in quite some time.
PAUL: No doubt, all right, hey, Andy, thank you so much.
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TRUMP: For the sake of our national security, the "New York Times" should publish his name at once.
(END VIDEO CLIP)