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Polls Open Less Than 24 Hours from Now in High Stakes Vote; Jamal Khashoggi's Sons Speak to CNN; A Day from U.S. Midterms, Penalties on Tehran Kick in; Children Struggle to Survive in "Living Hell" in Yemen; Midterm Elections Seen as a Referendum on Trump's Presidency. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired November 5, 2018 - 10:00   ET

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


[10:00:00] (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Two months ago, I was hearing about this horrendous blue wave, you better get out and vote.

BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Why is it that the folks that won the last election are so mad all the time?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST: It is not officially a referendum on the American President, but it's as close as you are going to get for now. In

just one day, millions of American voters will get to determine who runs their country and maybe with it change the way many of our lives as well.

That as we turn to a grim issue, Donald Trump has taken fire over ahead of the vote.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SALAH KHASHOGGI, JAMAL KHASHOGGI'S SON: The emotional burden that has come with the puzzle is really big.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: A columnist, a critic, but above all, a father. CNN's exclusive interview with the sons of the slain Saudi journalist. That is ahead this

hour. Plus, over in Iran --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: These people say they have a clear message for President Trump they vow to stand up and

fight back.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: Just a day away from Americans voting, Trump trying to push Iran to the breaking point and bend it to his will. While in Yemen, where Iran

pulverizing the place alongside Saudi Arabia -- things are so bad, a child dies there every ten minutes. We're going to take you there ahead.

We're connecting your world right up from our home here in Abu Dhabi. I'm Becky Anderson. A very warm welcome to our show.

Months of campaigning have come down to the final 24 hours and Americans are left with some stark choices as they get ready to go to the polls. We

are on the eve of high stakes elections that will reshape the political landscape in the United States with consequences that stretch far beyond

its borders. Huge numbers of Americans have already cast ballots in early voting. Shattering records in key states as they make their voices heard.

Every seat in the House of Representatives and one-third of the Senate up for grabs, not to mention key races at the state and local level.

President Donald Trump isn't on the ballot, but you can bet his message is as voters decide whether to reward candidates who support his agenda or

send them packing. Democrats hope a blue wave will sweep them back into power in Congress. And this new CNN poll is fueling those hopes. Many

analysts expect the Democrats to take back the House, but the Senate is an uphill battle.

Mr. Trump has made immigration a key focus of these elections, stirring up fears about a migrant caravan he calls an invasion. Is that what Americans

really care about most? Let's have a listen to some voters in their own words.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN DIGREGORIO, DENVER VOTER: I'm really concerned about civil rights in general for the community, for America as a whole. I see things going in a

not so great direction right now. Makes me nervous, things going on with transgender right and same sex marriage and things like that.

AMY RAPP, GREAT FALLS, MONTANA VOTER: I care about our freedom, I care about our borders and I care about our children. So, abortion is very

close to my heart and so is school choice and just where our country is headed.

SUSAN FUSFIELD, MIAMI VOTER: Not happy about what's going on in terms of our government, what's going on with our environment. Just the entire tone

of our national politics and world politics so I vote to make a change.

MARTIE MEES, MIAMI VOTER: The most important issues that I think we should hold value is the constitution, and to me that says it all.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Well, CNN has reporters -- as you would expect -- across the country, bringing you the very latest on key races that could help shift

the balance of power in America. Going to take you to three crucial battleground states. Have a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

RYAN NOBLES, CNN WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: I'm Ryan Nobles in Tallahassee, Florida, where two of the marquis races of the 2018 midterms are taking

place right here. In the race for the United States Senate. The incumbent Democrat Senator Bill Nelson is facing a very difficult challenge from the

state's current Republican Governor Rick Scott.

And then in the race for governor, there is an opportunity for Florida to make a historic choice. Andrew Gillum, the mayor of Tallahassee, could be

the state's first African-American governor. He is a social progressive with the support of Vermont Senator, Bernie Sanders.

[10:05:00] Meanwhile, his opponent Ron DeSantis, a former Congressman, has the support of President Trump. President Trump has had a very special

focus on Florida, he has been here twice. And the results here could end up being a referendum on his presidency.

KAYLEE HARTUNG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm Kaylee Hartung in Georgia where the polls are deadlocked. Republican Brian Kemp and Democrat Stacey Abrams

have been engaged in one of the most contentious campaigns of this midterm election and the drama it continues to unfold. Kemp is also the state's

top election official. And in his capacity as Secretary of State he's accusing the Georgia Democratic party of attempting to hack the state's

voter registration system. Abrams calls the claims a witch-hunt and says kemp is abusing his power. Both candidates using the opportunity to

continue to appeal to their polarized bases in the final stretch of the final campaign.

KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR U.S. CORRESPONDENT: I'm Kyung Lah in Scottsdale, Arizona with just 24 hours left to campaign to get out the vote. The

emphasis in this state is on independent voters, one-third of registered voters in this state are not affiliated with either political party. So,

what we are seeing, heavy phone banking, knocking on doors, focusing on the independents and trying to get them to the polls.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Let's get to two more of our reporters covering this all- important election. Political reporter Rebecca Berg is in Springfield, Missouri, watching a very narrow senate race there. Abby Phillip at the

White House, where President Trump is preparing for his final sweep to stump for more candidates later today. Let's start with you, Rebecca,

where Donald Trump in an event tonight will make effectively his closing argument in what is, let's face it, a report card on his presidency. There

is no state race better to reveal the dynamics, the real dynamics underlying these elections. Explain, if you will.

REBECCA BERG, CNN POLITICAL REPORTER: Right, this Missouri senate race is the story of the midterm elections in miniature. You had on the Democratic

side health care as a very prominent issue in this race. Democrat Claire McCaskill, the incumbent senator here, saying that Josh Hawley, the

Republican, would not protect coverage for pre-existing conditions, and that's been a major issue in the Democratic side.

On the Republican side, though, a very nationalized message. Republican Josh Hawley trying to make the case that Donald Trump needs more

Republicans in Washington to help his agenda. And so, really, it's going to come down to a choice between do Missouri voters want to support the

President -- echo, by the way, they backed by 19 points in 2016 -- or do they want more of a check and balance on the President. Which is the case

that Claire McCaskill, the Democrat, has been making. She says she's a moderate and Republicans have been making the opposite argument, that she

is a very liberal Democrat.

Here is some of the literature we're seeing in the campaign, this is a picture of Hillary Clinton and Claire McCaskill together. The closing

argument from Josh Hawley, the Republican, is that Claire McCaskill is just like Hillary Clinton. It feels like 2016 all over again in some respects,

but this is going to be a very key decisive race and it's really coming down to the wire here in Missouri.

ANDERSON: Well, Rebecca, in a key battleground state then. You heard from our other reporters as well. Viewers. Abby, Donald Trump crisscrossing

America at break neck speed. How is his tone and messaging been in the buildup to Tuesday's midterm elections?

ABBY PHILLIP, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, President Trump has been in attack mode for several days now. And leading up to this, you have

to remember that the White House had been -- and the President had been ramping up this aggressive message on immigration talking about invasion at

the borders. But we saw over the weekend as President Trump made multiple stops for Republican candidates across the country, he was going in attack

mode on all fronts, even -- but especially going after President Barack Obama who was campaigning for Democrats on the other side of the aisle.

One of the ways that he did that, and one of his rallies in the last several days was emphasized, the "H", which stands for Hussein in President

Obama's name. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: It's no surprise that Joe Donnelly is holding a rally this weekend with Barack H. Obama. Barack Obama.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: In case that wasn't painfully clear to everyone, that was the President spelling out the "H", which matters in this context, because we

know that a lot of people, particularly on the Republican side of the ledger believe that President Obama is a Muslim. They think that is a

derogatory thing, and the President seemed to be emphasizing that part of President Obama's name in order to make that point to his supporters.

[10:10:00] So, you have a lot of people basically saying this is getting down and dirty in the last few days. He's been calling the Democratic

opponent, for example, for the governor's race in Georgia saying that she's unqualified for the job. There has been a lot coming from President Trump

that has been in many cases not necessarily true, but an indication of how aggressive he's willing to go in order to go to the mat for his candidates.

ANDERSON: Abby, these elections are set for a record-breaking turnout, as far as I understand it. If we know anything, it is that polls are nothing

if not unreliable. But what, if anything, does the massive, massive increase in early voting suggest?

PHILLIP: Well, this is going to be one of the more unpredictable midterm elections we've had in a long time. There is high enthusiasm on both sides

of the aisle. You also have a President who is historically unpopular, but in economy that is extremely good. All of these things are going at each

other and sometimes in opposite directions.

But what you're seeing in the early voting numbers is that enthusiasm. You're seeing people, Democrats and Republicans showing up in record

numbers, midterm elections are typically low turnout affairs. If we see a big bump in turnout in this election, and it looks like based on the early

voting numbers and what we expect on election day it could very well be, that could totally scramble the dynamics that we normally see in midterm

races. And it is unclear, though, who this advantage is. I mean, we know Democrats are enthusiastic, but we also know that President Trump's

supporters have backed him with a degree of enthusiasm that people under, you know, didn't count as much in 2016, turned out to be a huge factor for

him in some key races.

So, I think we have to really wait and see here, watch and see what happens on election day. Because I'll tell you, in the United States, over the

last several years if early voting has become a bigger and bigger phenomenon and it is creating a lot of uncertainty in these predictions for

election day, because we can't really tell how people are voting and who is showing up and why when they vote early.

ANDERSON: Well, we will know election night, of course, you can see that on the screens there, viewers, 30 hours or so from now, those numbers will

be in. The voters will have spoken. Reporter Rebecca Berg, thank you, in Springfield, Missouri. Abby at the White House for you.

As we are hearing, the campaigning reaching fevered pitch right now. Why? What's really at stake? CNN's Tom Foreman now explains what the big deal

is when it comes to these midterm elections.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Presidents are elected every four years and halfway through the term come the midterm elections. What that means

in Congress is all 435 seats are up for grabs in the U.S. House of Representatives. And about a third of the seats over in the U.S. Senate as

well.

Right now, Republicans are ruling both chambers with majorities. There are a lot of complicated equations about how the Democrats could win control

back. But this is all you really need to know. On the House side, if the Democrats can pick up 23 seats, they would be in charge there. And on the

Senate side, if they could net two seats from the Republicans, then they would have control.

Now, bear in mind, that's a lot harder because they have many more seats to defend there. And, remember, a 50/50 tie here is a loss for the Democrats

because in the event of a tied vote, the tiebreaker is vice President Mike Pence, who is Republican. Midterms are seen as referendums on the

President and this one has been particularly polarizing. So, watch for potential flips in areas where Democrats are up in arms, where Republicans

don't have strong majorities and importantly where independents are frustrated with the White House. Because if enough seats flip in Congress,

big changes could follow. And it all starts with the midterm elections.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Tom Foreman for you. So, how this vote shakes out matters to all of us. Because wherever you are watching in the world now, this is a

referendum on Donald Trump's presidency effectively and his decisions to date and what goes on in America, as we know, doesn't stay in America.

Here in the Gulf and across the wider Middle East, for example, Donald Trump's words and actions to date having huge ramifications and with

Congress up for grabs, what happens next potentially even more important to all of us.

Well, a positive election result would embolden President Trump on the international stage.

[10:15:00] That could mean more strongman approaches like that towards Iran as the U.S. sanctions bite back. And the dire warning from UNICEF. Yemen

has become a living held for children, with the country on the brink of an historic famine. One child dies every 10 minutes from diseases that can be

easily prevented. Plus --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI, JAMAL KHASHOGGI'S SON: He was amazing. He was a good dad. Like motivational, understanding, challenging sometimes.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: The sons of murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi speak out for the first time since their father's killing. That exclusive here on CNN

coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: An iconic moment in the Donald Trump presidency. Mr. Trump in Saudi Arabia, taking part in a traditional sword dance during his first

stop on what was his first overseas trip as President. And that trip signaling to the world the kingdom's importance to his administration.

Well Tuesday's midterm elections in the U.S. could bring critical changes to that relationship. The killing of "Washington Post" columnist Jamal

Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last month sparked worldwide outrage. His murder thrusting the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia into

the spotlight. Some American lawmakers calling for an end to U.S. military support for Saudi Arabia. Well if the Democrats take control of the House,

those calls are likely to amplify.

Well at this crucial time Jamal Khashoggi's sons are speaking out for the first time since their father's murder. They say all of the information

they're hearing is confusing and there is one thing they really want. Here is Nic Robertson's exclusive interview.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SALAH KHASHOGGI, JAMAL KHASHOGGI'S SON: It is a mystery. And this is putting a lot of burden on us, all of us, that everybody is seeking for

information just as we do, and they think that we have answers. Unfortunately, we don't.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Abdullah, we've heard from the Turkish government that have said that they believe that your

father walked into the consulate, that he was choked, that he was then killed, from the Saudi government we understand that he was killed.

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI, JAMAL KHASHOGGI'S SON: Until now, it is vague, like it is a story, like the details, what exactly happened inside, as you know,

how is the media, Twitter, TV stations, everybody saying a different story.

[10:20:03] And for me, I am trying to simplify it as much as possible, that he died, and as simple as that.

ROBERTSON: And you were the last one of your father's children to see him, you saw him two months ago in Turkey. How was he then?

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: He was happy. It was a very good opportunity for me to see him. Went out in Istanbul. Had fun. And I think I was very lucky

to have that last moment with him.

ROBERTSON: How has all this been on your family, on your mother and your sisters?

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: It is difficult. It is not easy. Especially when the story gets this big. It's not an easy this. It's confusing. Even the way

we grieve, it is a bit confusing, because we're grieving, at the same time, we're looking at the media, and the misinformation. There's a lot of ups

and downs. It is not the normal situation, like it is not the normal death at all.

SALAH KHASHOGGI: All we want right now is to bury him in Al-Baqi, in medina, with the rest of his family.

ROBERTSON: In Saudi Arabia.

SALAH KHASHOGGI: In Saudi Arabia, yes. I talked about that with the Saudi authorities, and I just hope that it happens soon.

ROBERTSON: But you need to find -- somebody needs to find his body.

SALAH KHASHOGGI: Yes. I believe that decision is ongoing. And I'm really hopeful about that.

ROBERTSON: But what do you place your hope in?

SALAH KHASHOGGI: It is an Islamic tradition. It is not only Islamic, it's basic humanitarian issue. We just need to make sure that he rests in

peace. And till now, I still can't believe that he is dead. I know, I mean it is not sinking in with me emotionally. He is deceased, for sure.

But the emotional burden that is coming with the puzzle is really, is really big.

ROBERTSON: When you went into your father's apartment here in the United States, you discovered something that made you realize just how important

his grandchildren were to him. What was -- will you tell us about that?

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: Going to apartment, that was maybe the most emotional moment I had like in this past days. This picture especially it was next

to his bed stand, next to his bed, and his grandchildren, and that's the last thing he looked at before he goes to bed, that thing shocked me -- not

shocked, but it just, it showed us a new, nothing new, but it put an emphasis on his gentle tender side of loving his family, his grandkids.

ROBERTSON: The last thing he would see at night was his grandchildren and he put that there so he would see it.

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: Yes. It is just something huge. And it touched me personally. And all the family we didn't know about it.

ROBERTSON: What are you proudest of?

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: Always say the truth. Like basic human, just a good person. As simple as that. And he was very brave. He was always out

there, like for me, he was like a rock 'n' roll star and -- as a journalist.

ROBERTSON: Because he was like pushing the system a bit.

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: And he's always pushing. He was always -- yes, he was brave.

ROBERTSON: There have been people who have been trying to sort of create a different impression about him, a different legacy, allegations that he was

sort of supported, the Muslim Brotherhood.

SALAH KHASHOGGI: I don't believe so.

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: You can trivialize on that. I used to tease him, like the last time I met him in Turkey, I used to tease him, like, oh, I did

this on Twitter, like they're saying you're Muslim Brotherhood, where is your beard?

And he laughs. And he goes in details, I'm not Muslim brotherhood because of this, this, this --

ROBERTSON: And he said that to you.

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: Yes, and it's just labels, or just people that are not doing their homework properly and reading his article and going in depths.

[10:25:00] So it's just easier for them just to stick a label on him. Like, oh, here's something good. You're that, you're that, you're that.

ROBERTSON: Can you tell us about that meeting with the crown prince and the king?

SALAH KHASHOGGI: Yes, in that meeting with the king and the crown prince, when I went there, with my uncle, the king has stressed that everybody

involved will be brought to justice. And I have faith in that. This will happen.

ROBERTSON: You placed your faith in the king?

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: Yes.

ROBERTSON: In your heart of hearts, what do you think happened?

ABDULLAH KHASHOGGI: Something bad happened. Something maybe, but I really hope that whatever happened, it wasn't painful for him or something like

that. It was quick. Or he had a peaceful death. That's what I wish for.

SALAH KHASHOGGI: I'm not sure. I'm just waiting for the facts to come out. For me, it is just death. I know that he is dead. All I'm waiting

for is for the investigation to be over so the facts can turn out.

ROBERTSON: How do you think your father would want to be remembered?

SALAH KHASHOGGI: As a moderate man, who has common values with everyone, genuine, honest, a man who loved his country, who believed so much in it,

and its potential. Jamal was never a dissident. He believed in the monarchy, that it is the thing that is keeping the country together. And

he believed in the transformation that it is going through. And that's how he should be remembered.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Meanwhile, controversy surrounds Saudi Arabia. The U.S. President bolstering the kingdom by showing faith in its leadership. But

over in Iran, this hour, Saudi Arabia's regional rival of course, Donald Trump slapping renewed sanctions against Tehran's oil and banking sectors.

We will be live in Tehran for you. And then right after that, we go to a place where both Saudi Arabia and the Iranians are involved in what is a

growing humanitarian crisis on and off the battlefield in Yemen. The dire cost of the ongoing war there, after this.

[10:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: That horrible, disgusting, absolutely incompetent deal with Iran where they get $150 billion.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: The Iran deal, you saw Donald Trump attack, many times, on the Presidential campaign trail, is no more. At least from the U.S.

perspective, that is. It was a promise that Mr. Trump kept. He withdrew his country from the international deal aimed at curbing Iran's nuclear

program in exchange for lifting the sanctions on its economy.

Today, one day before the midterm election, all of the previous U.S. sanctions on Iran officially kick back in, with some new ones added for

good measure. And that timing, well, likely hardly a coincidence, in the last hour or so, U.S. Secretary of State and Treasury outlined penalties

that add 700 targets to the previous list. That brings the total to 900 entities sanctioned under the Trump administration. Well the sectors

include energy, shipping and banking. The renewal of sanctions was met with mass protests in Tehran on Sunday. Our senior international

correspondent Fred Pleitgen is in the Iranian capital for us. What is the mood there, Fred?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I would say there is a lot of people, Becky, here who are quite concerned about the

fact that these new sanctions are in place. But there is also a lot of anger and defiance towards the United States, specifically, of course,

towards President Trump, and his administration. And also, a lot of pushback. Coming not just from the government, but also from Iran's

military, which today started military drills, obviously in show of force. Here is what we learned.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Hardline protesters unleashing their anger at the U.S. and Israel. As new sanctions against Iran are set to go into effect.

(on camera): These people say they have a clear message for President Trump. No matter how tough America gets, no matter how strong the

sanctions are, they vow to stand up and fight back.

(voice-over): Signs denouncing President Trump in abundance. After Trump's tough talk on Iran, tough words in return.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not a good man.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think every person, all over the world, hate this man.

I'm here to say, down with the USA. Down with Israel. And all of your friends.

PLEITGEN: The demo comes on the anniversary of the Iran hostage crisis when protesters stormed the U.S. embassy here in 1979. And just hours

before the Trump administration will launch new sanctions targeting Iran's vital oil and gas sector, a move many Iranians already struggling to get

by, fear could send the economy into a tail spin. Experts say Tehran is working to try and offset the sanctions hit.

HAMED MOUSVI, TEHRAN UNIVERSITY: We're seeing a sort of Iran's version of pivot to the East, since a few years ago, and this is not only been in the

economic realm, but also in the political and military realm where Iran has become closer both to Russia and to China.

PLEITGEN: Iran once again bracing for new sanctions, and new hardship. A situation its people know all too well and hoped they had left behind.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

PLEITGEN: And you know, Becky, one the of the things that I think some people at least here draw a little hope from is the fact that you have

those waivers that were given to those eight country, including some of the ones that are the biggest importers of Iranian oil, including China, Japan,

and India as well. However, when you speak to people on the street, especially the more moderate folks, the business people, also the ones who

came back to Iran and wanted to start businesses here, a lot of them are not very hopeful, at least for the near-term future and a lot of them

believe the new sanctions could hit this country very hard very soon -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Fred is in Tehran for you viewers. The Trump administration that has vowed it would take Iran's oil exports -- thank you Fred -- to

zero.

[10:35:00] The renewed sanctions target that sector hard, but at the same time U.S. Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, naming -- as Fred points out --

a handful of countries that would receive temporary waivers from these energy related penalties. The Iranian president Hassan Rouhani has hailed

that as a victory. CNN's emerging markets editor, John Defterios, is with me here in the house in Abu Dhabi. Trying to get exports to zero, is that

realistic, John, do you think?

JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNNMONEY EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: I don't think so at all. This is kind of classic Trump, if you will, Becky. Talk really tough in

May and then again July, that we want to take the exports downs to zero. And then provide some wiggle room at the very end. Which I think is

recognition to the fact that the world needs Iranian crude. They can't replace it just like. That we are looking at exports before at 2.8 million

barrels a day back in June.

Overall though, these sanctions are tough. 700 new entities you were talking about, taking it up to 900. Shipping, banking, the Swift banking

system itself. It's going to hurt Iran over all. But Donald Trump had two clear choices here when it comes to oil. Do you take them down to zero or

pressure them really aggressively before the midterm elections, or provide some wiggle room going forward? He also made a call out to his allies here

in the Middle East, even to Russia, saying I need more crude. So, it's very unusual going into the announcement of the formal sanctions to go from

$86 a barrel on North Sea Brent down to $73. Even with the announcement of tough sanctions, we went up 1 percent today. But it was not a huge rally

and that's because we see Iran's production dropping but not collapsing. Let's take a quick listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

IMAN NASSEN, MIDDLE EAST MANAGING DIRECTOR, FGE: We draw an expected part of Iran's export falling to less than a million per day by first quarter

next year, and around 780,000 barrels a day by the middle of next year. So far it has come along --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DEFTERIOS: So, 7 to 800,000 by June of 2019 is far from zero. Here is a list of the countries that Fred kind of basically toured over here. The

ones that surprised me were Italy and Greece because the European Union is so against the U.S. sanctions. But they keep quiet ties as you know,

between Iran and Rome and Iran and Athens. So those are going to be maintained. China, Turkey and India, never wanted to go along with the

deal so it is almost like legalizing the fact that they will continue to import. And the big importers from Asia are there, Japan, South Korea and

acknowledging Taiwan at the same time.

ANDERSON: But still of course the Iranians struggling with the idea that the Swift system won't work for them. And that the European mechanism, it

is a mechanism to replace the dollar as it were, still not something that we have seen really tabled, that would really work, going forward. Why is

Donald Trump being tougher on Iran? We're looking at these midterms. These midterms effectively a referendum on his presidency today.

DEFTERIOS: Sure.

ANDERSON: Congress up for grabs at this point. Things could get more Trump, there could be more Trump-isms going forward, as it were, not less

if the Republicans are to win well on Tuesday. What might we expect going forward. And why do you think he's being tough on Iran than others?

DEFTERIOS: Well, if this base goes to the voting block and he promised to be tougher on Iran and he can walk away and say I am tougher on Iran. Just

take oil for example, during the Obama administration and the administration of George Bush Jr., they took down Iranian exports to a

million barrels a day and they did it for humanitarian purposes. They said that is the minimum to hold for Iran going forward, and that is a fair

point. He's going to get them down to 7 to 800,000 barrels. Not to zero. But he can say I was tougher than the two previous administrations going

forward.

But this is a leaky boat. There's a threat here. The European Union doesn't support Washington on this. So, they're going to try to -- maybe

that special purpose vehicle you're talking about is not going to work. And I tend to agree with you on that. But they're going to try to work

around the sanctions. The Italians and the Greeks got the exemptions. China clearly doesn't support it. Russia doesn't support it. India

doesn't support it. In Fred's report the gentleman talked about Iran tilting to the East, that's a reality. So, I don't think the U.S.

sanctions are going to bear a lot on them financially, the financial system. But I think it is somewhat of a leaky boat going forward.

ANDERSON: Fascinating. Time will tell. Thank you, John. John Defterios in the house for you.

The Israeli Prime Minister is praising the sanctions on Iran. That's not surprising. Calling it an historic day for Israel. Benjamin Netanyahu

called it a critical blow to Iran's entrenchment in the region, not the least Yemen. More than three years of war have brought that country to the

brink of an historic famine. UNICEF says one child dies every 10 minutes. And I must warn you, the images that you are about to see are graphic and

disturbing. Here is my colleague, CNN's Nima Elbagir.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Youssef arrived at the hospital yesterday. At first, his family couldn't afford to

take him to hospital.

[10:40:00] They had to wait until they could scrape together enough money for the journey. They turn him over to examine his back, but it's too

painful. His malnutrition is so advanced that every breath is a wheeze of agony. At 13 years of age, he weighs as much as a four-year-old. Here at

this hospital in Sanaa, they've been inundated with starving children. Mohammed is just five months old and is severely malnourished. Starving

mothers giving birth to starving babies, and the cycle continues.

LISE GRANDE, U.N. RESIDENT AND HUMANITARIAN COORDINATOR FOR YEMEN: Every single day, more than 100 children are dying because of causes related to

the conflict and to the crisis. There are seven million people in Yemen who are malnourished, three million of whom are acutely malnourished. It

is a devastating, heartbreaking human, very human tragedy.

ELBAGIR: For the last three years, Yemen has been in the grip of a civil war, pitting the U.S.-backed Saudi led coalition against Iran backed Houthi

rebels.

Here in Yemen, even as criticism swelled over allegations of official Saudi involvement in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the world ignored

the Saudi crown prince's other undertaking, restoring the government of President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi at whatever cost. Now it may almost be too

late.

GRANDE: You've asked us the important question about whether or not we can scale up to meet the increased needs across the country. We estimate that

14 million people could be at the brink of famine. But we know that if we receive funding and receive it now, that we will be able to reach these

people. It will, however, require that all of the parties to the conflict do everything they can to facilitate and support our work.

ELBAGIR: Dahlia is just over a year old. She has the telltale swollen stomach of malnutrition. Her shallow breaths almost as much an agony for

her mother as they are for her.

Her mother says she needed an operation to insert a feeding tube. Their last hope. Now, they wait.

Youssef's mother rubs his hands. She's already lost two children. And she doesn't know whether Youssef will survive, whether he'll ever be the same

again. Like so many mothers here, she can only hope and pray. Nima Elbagir, CNN, London.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ANDERSON: Horrific scenes there. Live from Abu Dhabi, you're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. We will be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: In just 24 hours' time, Americans face a choice that will shape the nation and our world. For years, a choice which is essentially a poll

on how Donald Trump is doing as President. So, let's connect you to the highs and the lows of his two years in power at home.

The U.S. economy roaring, job numbers are up, way up, and wage hikes are putting more money in people's pockets.

[10:45:00] On the flip side, the Russia investigation, chugging along in the background, since the probe began, the special counsel has issued

criminal charges against more than 30 people, including a number of key names with close proximity to the President. Still, while Mr. Trump's

enemies, head out, it would take down the President himself, it hasn't. Meantime, abroad there's been a series of hopeful gestures with North

Korea, but many, many will say, it is being superficial at best. Despite this historic meeting between Mr. Trump and Kim Jong-un, experts say steps

toward denuclearization by North Korea are so far largely cosmetic and easily reversible. But here is how Trump's top diplomat sees it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MIKE POMPEO, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: We haven't had any missile tests. There've been no nuclear tests. We've had the returns of American remains.

These are all good steps. We're continuing to negotiate with the North Koreans to achieve what President Trump set up. The full denuclearization,

verified by the United States of the Korean Peninsula, and then a brighter future for the North Korean people.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: With all this, amid an ongoing self-started trade war with China of course, both countries slamming the other with tariffs, each hitting

each other's industries hard. Meantime, Trump is sticking to many of his campaign promises. The U.S. is out of the Iran deal as we have been

discussing. And out of the Paris agreement. NAFTA, gone. While they are out, nationalism is in. In the past 24 months we've seen the President as

a major driver in the resurgence of right-wing populism. Not just in the U.S., Europe swinging to the right of course as well and other countries

around the world. Now one of the continent's main politicians and a frequent Trump sparring partner, German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she

is on the way out when her term ends.

We can't say it hasn't been an eventful two years. We know that well in the region where we broadcast to you from, here, this is our Middle Eastern

hub in Abu Dhabi. Here to help break it all down is Stephen Moore. Co- written a book "Trumponomics, Inside the America First Plan to Revive Our Economy". Getting inside the mind of Trump's voters and Trump's plan to

revive the rust belt. We've just listed, sort of a report card, as it were, on the ups, the downs, and I'm not sure much of this has helped

revive the rust belt, but it has to be said, Donald Trump's sticking to what he said in and during his campaign. We are two years in, how would

you score the U.S. President, sir?

STEPHEN MOORE, CNN SENIOR ECONOMICS ANALYST: Great to be with you. And look, this is one of the most unusual politicians of modern times. He

actually keeps his promises. And he's actually, you're right, he has done a lot of the things that he said he would do, whether it is, you know, pull

out of the Iran deal, whether it is, you know, pulling the United States out of what we think was a very anti-American Paris climate accord and then

of course, you know, bringing jobs back to areas of the country, as you described it, the rust belt state, states like Michigan, Ohio, and

Pennsylvania. They don't like to be called the rust belt. But, you know, these states that didn't feel recovery. And the good news is, you know, on

the jobs front, and on the growth front, Trump has really brought a lot of prosperity back to the United States.

ANDERSON: Well, that certainly, as the campaign describes it, there will be those who say, he's brought an awful lot of prosperity back to -- a

very small percentage of the U.S. general public. Be that as it may, we have heard a lot about a surge in early voting, sir. You're an economist,

a senior economist, you're an analyst, so let's have a look at these numbers. These are the numbers for 12 key states. So far, more than 16

million people have voted in this year's elections, compared to just over 7.5 million in the same states back in the 2014 midterms. Altogether, in

the entire country, more than 31 million early votes have already been cast this year.

It is gearing up, or these elections are gearing up, to be a record- breaking election period for what are these midterms. These sort of in between, these Presidential elections. And the question really is this.

How will that early voting affect how these candidates do if at all? Certainly, in other parts of the world, and I believe this to be true in

the states as well. If you get the youngsters out, the youngsters tend to be more liberally focused. They will be, we are told at least, they might

be more likely to vote for the Democrats. How are you reading what you've seen to date? And given that Donald Trump's base, sir, is effectively the

base that hasn't changed.

[10:50:00] How do you see this election going?

MOORE: By the way, anyone who tells you that they know how this election is going to turn out is lying to you, because I don't think any of us

really know. I mean this is going to be, this is going to be a tough election to predict. Look, the Democrats,-- you've got a lot of very angry

Democrats, who are enraged over some of Trump's policy, and they're surely going to come out and vote. Anger and rage, are always a powerful

motivator to vote. On the other hand, you've got these Republican voters who very much approve of Donald Trump's agenda, I mean the country is very

polarized, obviously, about Donald Trump. Conservative Republicans love him. Liberal Democrats don't like his policies at all. And so, this is a

cliche, but it really is true. It is going to depend not just on how big the turnout is but who's turning out. Is it going to be Republican voters

who sit on their hands and stay home or will they come out and vote?

Look, the big issue in this campaign as with everything in America, the number one issue in the campaign is Donald Trump. Right? And Donald Trump

isn't even on the ballot. So, Democrats have tried to make it about Donald Trump. The problem, I think they have, is that we've got some good news on

the economy, last week, on consumer confidence, is very much up, the jobs numbers are good, so we will see. But I can't make a prediction. I don't

know what is going to happen tomorrow.

ANDERSON: How these votes shakes out, you're absolutely right. We've learned, better than to look at polls these days. But how this vote shakes

out, and we've been talking about this throughout this hour, matters to all of us, because wherever we are in the world, this is a referendum on the

last couple of years, and what happens in America doesn't stay in America. So, step back, I know you don't want to guess what happens, you are not

into predicting the future, even if it is only 24 hours out at this point but should the makeup of Congress change -- and let's remember, you know,

there are some Senate seats out, but the entire House is up for grabs. How might that affect foreign policy going forward?

MOORE: Look, I actually think the media has been overrating how important these midterm elections are. Just, you know, for the international

audience, President Trump is not on the ballot. These are the Congressional races. And some of our state governors that are on the

ballot. And so, it is not nearly as important, obviously, as a presidential election, which we're going to have in 2020. Would it be the

end of the world for Donald Trump if he lost Congress? I'm going to argue no. Look I'm a Republican, I don't want him to lose Congress. But you

know, look at what happened, for example, in 1994, when Bill Clinton was President, Republicans blew out the Democrats in the midterm election, and

as you recall, what happened in '96, Bill Clinton was re-elected.

Now, fast forward to 2014, after the second year of the Obama presidency, what happened? Republicans had a monster year, they blew out the

Democrats. What happened two years later? Barack Obama got re-elected. So, I'm not sure this is going to be a reflection on Donald Trump. And I

think the most important thing is whether Donald Trump will get re-elected in 2020 and he might want to run against Nancy Pelosi as the Speaker of the

House so he has a foil to run against.

ANDERSON: Got it. Well we are 24 hours out and counting at this point. The results will be in towards late afternoon, of course, stateside, CNN,

all over it like a rash. Thank you, sir. A lot to get your mind stuck into this hour. But for a second, we put it all aside, just for a moment.

We take you to Barcelona. For a preview of Oud master Naseer Shamma's new show. That, after this.

[10:55:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANDERSON: To what sometimes seems like an increasingly divided world, but if there's one thing that can bring us all together, it is beautiful be

music. That's the idea behind a new show by the Iraqi musician Naseer Shamma. UNESCO artist for peace, weaves together Arabic and Western

instruments.

I'm Becky Anderson. That was CONNECT THE WORLD. We will leave you with this music.

END