Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

Dow Plunges over Confusion on Trade War Negotiations with China; Hundreds of Bush Relatives Pay Their Respects; Trump to Visit Bush Family to Offer Private Condolences; Biden Says I'm the Most Qualified Person to Be President; Salesforce CEO Says Facebook Is the New Cigarettes. Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired December 4, 2018 - 15:30   ET

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


[15:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: Breaking news. All eyes on the financial markets. Take a look right now at the big board. Stocks again in freefall. At one point the Dow dropping more than 800 points, wiping out much of the gains for the year. Right now, it's down 723 points. It's been hovering between that and 600. Alison Kosik join us now from the stock exchange. What are you hearing there, Alison?

ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: There's just a lot of uncertainty and a lot of confusion when it comes to those meetings that happened on the sidelines at the G-20 between China's President Xi and President Trump. Those meetings, of course, happening in Argentina over the weekend.

What came out of there was, OK, there's going to be a deal to talk and progress toward a deal. But there's a realization today on the floor where I am at the New York Stock Exchange that there really is no deal and there's nothing concrete. Even if you look at the 90-day cease- fire that was announced in the tariff war, there was some confusion about when that date would actually start. Economic advisor, Larry Kudlow, saying it started January 1st. The White House saying, no, it starts earlier than that.

And then you have the President today in a series of tweets trying to explain what exactly is going on outside of those meetings when it comes to trade. And that really just accentuated the confusion. You have the president saying the 90-day cease-fire begins when Xi and Trump had that lovely dinner in Argentina. So, there's just a lot of confusion about what concrete is actually going to happen when it comes to really finding a resolution in the trade dispute happening between the U.S. and China -- Ana.

CABRERA: Right, Alison. The Dow now down 750 points. Stay with us as the closing bell gets closer.

Meantime, he is charged with murdering a young woman in Charlottesville during the aftermath of that white supremacist rally last year. And today we are hearing why he hyperventilated during interrogation. And how a picture of Hitler is suddenly involved in this trial. Plus, Joe Biden weighing in on who he thinks is most qualified to be

president -- himself. We'll talk about what that means for 2020.

[15:35:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CABRERA: A remarkable moment today as people pay their respects to President George H.W. Bush in the Capitol Rotunda. Former Senator Bob Dole helped from his wheelchair to salute his old friend.

Right now, more than 200 members of Bush's extended family are filing through the Capitol Rotunda to say their goodbyes. And soon President Trump will head to Blair House for a meeting with the Bush family to offer private condolences. I want to check in with CNN's special correspondent, Jamie Gangel. I know Laura Bush also visited the White House today. What more can you tell us about that?

JAMIE GANGEL, CNN SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT: And, Anna, it turns out, it wasn't just Laura Bush. Our colleague, Kate Bennett, is just telling us that actually 20 members of the Bush family were invited to the White House with the former first lady, Laura Bush. We have a picture of them all there. You can see standing in front of former President George H.W. Bush's portrait with the black cloth draped over it.

I think, Ana, what we're going to see today and tomorrow is both families trying to do, as a friend said to me, do what 41 would do. They're going to really try to be as gracious as possible, even with their history together. There is I think a mission by the Bush family to be gracious, to be respectful of the office. And one of the things they said to me was they really feel the White House has bent over backwards to extend themselves and give every courtesy to the Bush family this week.

[15:40:02] And as you just mentioned in just a little while, I think a little after 4:00, we're going to see President Trump and first lady, Melania Trump, go over to Blair House to pay their condolences.

So, I just think in this week where we've heard so many tributes of Bush 41 being a gentleman, total class, gracious, that's really what you're going to see these two families do. What will be interesting, however, to see is what happens at the cathedral tomorrow for the service where all the former Presidents are going to be together for the first time. We're all going to be watching that very closely -- Ana.

CABRERA: No doubt about it. Jamie Gangel, thank you for your ongoing reporting on this.

Democratic stars are now reacting to Joe Biden's declaration. Joe Biden also will be at the funeral. But he's on his book tour right now and he is saying he is the most qualified in the country to run for president.

Plus, it has been months and months of silence but any moment we expect Robert Mueller will reveal details on how Michael Flynn cooperated with the special counsel.

[15:45:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CABRERA: We have this just in from the Charlottesville, Virginia trial. The man accused of plowing his car into a crowd of demonstrators protesting against white nationalists. Jurors today heard audio tapes of James Fields Jr. sobbing during interrogation. He broke down. He hyperventilated for several minutes after being told people had been injured and one had died. Feels is on trial for killing Heather Heyer and injuring several others during that unite the right rally in August of last year.

Also, in court today, a judge also allowed an image of Adolf Hitler that prosecutor say Fields sent to his mother. The judge also allowed audio of phone conversations between Fields and his mother recorded just after the attack. In one of those calls, Fields can be heard slamming victim Heather Heyer's mother, calling her an anti-white communist and said she was the enemy. When his mom replied, she lost her daughter. He responded, that doesn't (expletive) matter, she is the enemy, mother.

When the defense puts on its case lawyers for Fields are expected to try to convince the jury that he acted out of fear of their counter protesters and not with criminal intent.

Well, the 2020 race for President is already heating up. Former Vice President Joe Biden telling a book tour crowd, quote, I'll be as straight as I can with you. I think I am the most qualified person in the country to be president. He said he will make a decision on a presidential run in the next two months. And he went on to make this admission.

Quote, I am a gaffe machine, but my God, what a wonderful thing compared to a guy who can't tell the truth.

CNN senior political writer and analyst Harry Enten is joining us now. So, I remember when being a gaffe machine was a bad thing. Do you think in today's political world it's actually perhaps a good thing in the eyes of voters?

HARRY ENTEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL WRITER: I don't know if it's a good thing, but compared to the man in the White House, I'm not sure how you could be more of a gaffe machine than he is, as least as we commonly define gaffes. Look, I think voters are looking for authenticity. That was one of the big problems with Hillary Clinton when she was matched up against Donald Trump. He won on that authentic measure even if people thought that she was more qualified than he was. So, to me Joe Biden, his main sell could be authenticity. His authenticity pitch that could in fact work with him. The stuff about him being experienced, I'm not sure that's such a selling point, however.

CABRERA: Let me ask you about that. Because as you point out, he said he was most experienced. Then it could be a crowded field for the 2020 primary. Elizabeth Warren, the Senator from Massachusetts also considering a presidential run. Listen to this exchange she had with CNN's Manu Raju about Biden's comments.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Senator, last night Joe Biden said he'd be the most qualified person to run for President. Do you agree?

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D), MASSACHUSETTS: I think that the Vice President has many wonderful qualities. And I'm glad to hear that he's out and talking.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CABRERA: What do you make of that?

ENTEN: I mean, look, I think that she's trying to balance this whole entire act. Right? Where she doesn't want to attack someone else in the field and at the same time. While at the same time she's trying to sell herself. And that's going to be one of the real balancing acts I think a lot of Democrats are going to have going forward in 2020. Is the field is going to be so large, so huge, 10, 15, could be up to 20 people. Who knows?

They want to go after the President of the United States while at the same time they want to be able to differentiate themselves from the fellow Democrats in the field. It's going to be very interesting to see who is the first one who eventually goes on the attack but that's not going to happen for a pretty long time, I don't think.

CABRERA: Kind of going back to this authenticity that you talked about. We heard from Bruce Springsteen this week. He's no Trump fan but he says, he thinks Trump going to be re-elected president in 2020 because nobody can talk like Trump can. Is there truth to that?

ENTEN: I mean, look, Donald Trump has defied the critics once before. He did so in 2016 when people such as myself thought that he had no shot of winning at least when winning in the primary season. At the end of the day when you have a president -- and incumbent President, these campaigns tend to be about his or her record, or his record in the case of this country.

And so, yes, at this point, maybe there is no one who can stand up and is this sort of presidential figure. But you know what? You go back to 1992 when George H.W. Bush was running, there weren't a lot of people in that democratic field who looked like presidential figures either.

[15:50:00] But then one emerged because the President, George H.W. Bush was so unpopular. If Donald Trump is as unpopular in two years as he is today, he will probably lose.

CABRERA: All right, Harry Enten, good to have you with us.

ENTEN: Thank you.

CABRERA: Thank you, sir.

CABRERA: Back to our breaking news. The Dow still falling. Let's take a look. It's down 746 points now, just minutes from the closing bell. We'll have details on how the President's tweets could be driving this.

[15:55:00](COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CABRERA: Welcome back. One of the world's most successful internet entrepreneurs is calling out Facebook. Marc Benioff the founder of Salesforce is hitting Facebook over issues of privacy and lack of self-regulation. And joining us is CNN's business senior technology correspondent, Laurie Segall. Laurie, he's actually calling the social media giant the new cigarettes?

LAURIE SEGALL, CNN BUSINESS, SENIOR TECHNOLOGY CORRESPONDENT: Yes, and I will say, Marc Benioff is becoming an incredibly influential leader in Silicon Valley. He's calling out tech companies left and right. And he talked to me about this idea of the fourth industrial revolution. He says we are so connected and with that comes a lot of ethical implications. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MARC BENIOFF, FOUNDER, SALESFORCE: When everyone and everything is connected, OK, you're going to have to really think about, do you trust what is happening? Do you trust these companies and these products that are in your home? And in your car? And what's going on?

SEGALL: I mean, I've got to tell you, Marc, I don't 100 percent. Look at what's happened in the last couple years. How can we put all our faith in big tech when in the last years it doesn't seem like some of these companies know the impact of their own algorithms?

BENIOFF: I think it's kind of the metaphor of the social networks. It's great, actually. When a started, they're talking about is Nirvana, everything is wonderful. We're going to connect everybody together. Now we find out they're not uniting us, they're dividing us. You know? That they're not maintaining our data. That they're selling it. You know, that there isn't privacy. You know, that there's a -- basically, a huge ecosystem of people who are harvesting the data for personal gain.

SEGALL: Do you trust this industry to self-regulate?

BENIOFF: I don't trust the industry to self-regulate. I already said, Facebook is the new cigarettes. It's not good for you. It's addictive. You don't know who is trying to convince you to use it or misuse it. The government has to step in and regulate it, and Facebook has proven that to us over and over and over again that they need to be regulated, because they're not self-regulating.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SEGALL: Yes. And I think it's also worth noting this idea of the business model in Silicon Valley and when it comes to Facebook, is it fundamentally broken. I think that's another question we have to ask as we have these questions about ethics in the future of technology. CABRERA: We have just about 30 seconds, Laurie. But Facebook has

said in the past that they welcome some kind of regulation, don't they?

SEGALL: Yes, you know, but I think a lot of this is, it's taken a long time and it's taken a lot of bad things to happen for them to get to this point. And, of course, I think they want the right kind of regulation at this point. And I think there's a lot of pressure right now on the government for them to get it together, for them to get in front of things. Because I think Facebook's whole ethos has been, they have been too reactive and not proactive. You look at what happened with the election, with data use. And so now I think they're -- you know, kind of playing catchup in a way that I think they're under a lot of pressure on both sides. Republicans and the Democrats to get it together. And the question is, you know, can the government come up with the right type of regulation for Facebook. I think that's a big question that we're going to be looking at in the future.

CABRERA: Their survival may depend on it. Thank you so much Laurie Segall, for sharing with us. Don't forget to check out her series, "THE HUMAN CODE" at CNNbusiness.com.

That does it for me, thanks for being here. "THE LEAD" with Jake Tapper starts right now.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: Welcome to "THE LEAD," I'm Jake Tapper. We start with breaking news in our money lead today. A massive stock selloff as concerns grow that the trade truce between the U.S. and China may not actually be much of a truce. The Dow closing down almost 800 points, wiping out yesterday's gains and putting the market at risk. At risk of losing all of the gains it's made this year. CNN's Alison Kosik is live at the New York Stock Exchange. Alison, why the selloff?

KOSIK: Yes, a dramatic move to the down side, especially when you look at the Dow. Down almost 800 points. The market is reassessing what came out of the meeting between China's President Xi and President Trump in Argentina. There is growing doubt that the ongoing trade war between the U.S. and China is going to actually end any time soon. Despite the White House speaking positively about meetings at the G-20, there is this realization now in the financial markets that nothing concrete actually came out of those meetings and that there is no deal.