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CNN NEWSROOM

Trump Offers Temporary Three Year Protection for Dreamers; Democratic Lawmakers Reject Trump's Immigration Proposal; Democrats Say Reopen Government Then We'll Talk Border Security; TSA Callouts Climbed to 10% of Workforce Over The Weekend; Members of Band KISS Offer Free Meals at Airports; Interview with Paul Stanley of KISS About Feeding TSA Workers;, Kamala Harris Announces Presidential Run; "New York Times" Says Giuliani Discussed with Trump Moscow Tower Deal Until Election.

Aired January 21, 2019 - 14:00   ET

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


[14:00:00] BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN HOST: You're watching CNN. I'm Brooke Baldwin. Thank you for being with me on a day when we pause to honor the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Many Americans are no doubt wondering what he would say about Washington's newest blame game, one that has federal workers caught in the middle. The latest, temporary protections for a permanent wall. That's what President Trump is laying before Democrats as it stretches into day 31.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This is a common-sense compromise. Both parties should embrace.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: Here is just some of what was on the table. Full funding for his border wall in exchange for three year of protection for DACA recipients as well as immigrants with expiring temporary status. But the plan is pretty much dead on arrival in Congress because even as Mitch McConnell says the Senate will vote on the proposal this week, the message from Democrats remains clear. Open the government first and then we'll talk.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MARK WARNER (D), VIRGINIA: MITCH MCCONNELL, SENATE MAJORITY LEADER: We just also made clear that what the President proposed yesterday increasing border security, looking at TPS, the Dreamers, I'll use that as a starting point, but you have to start by opening the government. What we cannot do and I've had Republicans recognize this, is we cannot reward the kind of behavior of hostage taking. If the President can shut down the government now, he will do it time and again.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: The White House isn't just feeling the heat on the left. There's also trouble brewing on the right where they say his plan is nothing but amnesty. Kaitlyn, so the President wants to reinstate DACA protections, which he ended in 2017 at the time, he gave Congress six months to give up a permanent fix. Why is he willing to offer that as a solution to this?

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Because the White House wants to send a solution that they're open to finding a way out of this government shutdown. Because inside the White House, they are paying close attention to the polls that show the Americans are holding the President responsible for the shutdown and not Congress. Now this does not provide protection for those eligible for DACA. Only three years of protection for those enrolled in the program. Democrats say that doesn't go long enough while the hard liners who helped the President get to the White House say it goes too far. Including Ann Coulter who says what the President is offing for not only the dreamers, but those under temporary status amounts to amnesty. Now the White House is pushing back on those claims. The Vice President Mike Pence saying this doesn't provide a permanent pathway to citizenship and that really shows you what the fight is going on, not just with White House and Democrat, but also between White House officials. You've got to Jared Kushner types going on Capitol Hill, trying to negotiate not only with Republicans, but also with Democrats, but then you've got to Steven Miller types who favored narrowing what they're going to offer these concessions to Democrats. Democrats are right now remaining firm in their stance that they want the President to reopen the government first and then they will negotiate border security with him. So right now, we are over a month into this government shutdown. 800,000 federal workers are preparing to miss their second paycheck and right now, we do not seem to be any closer unless something substantial is going to change, to reopen the government.

BALDWIN: Down to Capitol Hill. Phil, you have these Congressional Democrats who say they weren't consulted on this plan, but Mitch McConnell said he won't bring any bill to the Senate floor unless you have President Trump, Speaker Pelosi and leader Schumer all on board, yet he plans to vote on this one this week.

So, can you just talk us through what the Senate majority leader's strategy here is. Why no counteroffer from the Dems?

PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: From the perspective of the majority leader, it's a shift from what occurred last week. When Speaker Pelosi suggested they move the state of the union and the back and forth over military planes, there's a recognition amongst Republicans who have been speaking to the majority leader that something need to change. Something needed to jar dynamic. Pretty much laid in concrete that there wasn't going to be b a solution soon. That's when they came to Capitol Hill and presented the top line of the proposal the President announced on Saturday. What McConnell did was add a few more things that might incentivize Republicans to come on board.

[14:05:00)] There's $12.7 billion inn disaster relief fund. An extension of the violence against women act through September. Appropriations bills. Basically, broadening the proposal and understanding the fact that while this might not be a silver bullet and pass, it's something that a, would put more pressure on Democrats. Why haven't Democrats countered? They believe their position is the only one they should have for a long-time strategy. The idea that the President led to a government shutdown over something and Democrats shouldn't give him anything as a result. Anytime they come up against another funding deadline later in the year, if they give him anything on the policy front now, he'll likely go back to this strategy and they want to disabuse him or of that notion. That being said, House Democrats will vote on their own proposal, a package of six bills, plus about a billion dollars in border security that doesn't include wall money. Saying look, we can pass things to reopen the government. They've done it multiple times, they're going to do it again and emphasize their border security priorities. Bottom lip line, this is still at an impasse. No clear pathway forward, out of this yet. I guess the big question going into this week is will the President's proposal jar those rank and file Senators with Republican and Democrat who have been trying to find a way out, but at this moment, that hasn't happened and something else I've learned today. The White House and Democratic leaders still have not spoken since the President's proposal was released and beyond. That's where things stand right now.

BALDWIN: I thought he knew how to make a deal and also same with the Democrats. We'll watch for movement this week. Thank you for now. This all comes back to the real-life impact of the shutdown and how it's intensifying nationwide. I know so many of you are feeling it. One of the most visible designs is the nation's airports.

One in ten TSA workers called out Sunday. More than three times the number of unscheduled absences from a year ago. The agency says quote, financial limitations are preventing many from making it to work and that news comes as these workers and others prepare to lose their second straight paycheck later this week. Rene Marsh is at Reagan National in Washington, D.C. So how is the TSA dealing with this.

RENE MARSH, CNN AVIATION AND GOVERNMENT REGULATIONS CORRESPONDENT: You know, we just take a moment and just peel this all back. There really is no positive spin on this. The TSA has been put into place to protect aviation from a threat and these individuals, one in ten, are calling out because they can't afford to come to work due to this shutdown. We are seeing the most callouts that we have seen throughout this entire shutdown and it's resulting in airports being forced to shut security check points. We saw that in Baltimore. Also, in Miami and Houston, as well as Atlanta and as this shutdown continues to drag on, we don't expect those numbers to get better. We expect the call outs to continue and we expect passengers will continue to see long lines and that we'll continue to see check points being shut down. Of course, TSA says their main priority here is to make sure security is not compromised, however in talking to a lot of TSA employees, they say their number one concern is the fact that how can security not be compromised? They're essentially doing the same job with fewer resources. People aren't coming into work. There are people working overtime shifts. They're thinking ant their next missed paycheck. So, it just creates a vulnerability that wasn't there prior to this shutdown. We know that TSA is taking the measure of flying back up TSA officers to airports that are seeing the short staffing issue so they can fill those gaps.

BALDWIN: Got it. Thank you with the backup plan from TSA and TSA workers, they're getting a boost from some of the best-known names in rock and roll. Members of the band KISS are offering free meals.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GENE SIMMONS, FORMER KISS LEAD SINGER: We're proud to operate our Rock & Brews restaurants at airports and respect the diligent hard work of each and every TSA employee to ensure the safety of who else, us.

PAUL STANLEY, KISS FRONT MAN AND FOUNDER: While the TSA continues to work on our behalf, without pay, we want to make sure that we can provide them with a delicious meal to show our support.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[14:10:00] BALDWIN: And KISS cofounder and front man Paul Stanley is with me now live from Los Angeles. Paul Stanley, it is nice to have you back on and here you are about to, another book coming out. On the precipice of this tour. And here you are feeding TSA workers. It's one thing for celebrities to tweet their support or offer thoughts, but you and Gene are actually doing something about it. Tell me what you're doing and why.

STANLEY: It was founded as a fun restaurant for people to go to celebrating rock and roll. Good food, good friends, but also without the people who have made this country great, none of it would be possible. So, from the time we open our doors, every Rock and Brews that open celebrates those veterans with meals and donations to charities. We also do Veterans Day the same thing. And we just believe in giving back to the community and here's a, our community is this country. So, to have a situation where 800,000 people are out of work, basically because of political egos and strategizing, forgets the point that those are the people who make this country great and we make sure that the TSA workers and Coast Guard right now get one meal a day from us.

BALDWIN: Awesome. Awesome. I want to come back to that in a second, but you see your fair share of airport security lines. You're a week away from this tour kiss. Have you talked to any of these employees as you're going through security? What are they saying to you or what would you want to say to them?

STANLEY: They're saying it's tough. It's obviously tough when people's mortgages are on the line. When people are trying to pay for meals for their children. This is horrific. Look, Chris Wallace on Fox said to Mike Pence yesterday that he believed that the government shutdown should be over and it was just leverage. The problem is when you're leveraging the government and shutting it down u, who is the government? It's of the people, by the people and for the people. Who are you hurting? You're hurting the people. These are the people who make this country what it is and to see them in this horrendous position, everybody, not just me, everybody can do something. The gift of giving is a gift to the people who give, also. So, everybody can't give the same, but I always say don't give until it hurts. You give until it feels good. It feels good to help people. Those are the people who help us.

BALDWIN: My last question for you is just really big picture. I know we're in touch. I know if news addict is the right way to characterize you, but you know what's going on in the world. You saw that Trump offered this three-year extension for dreamers in exchange for this 5.7 billion for the wall. Democrats rejected it as a nonstarter and it is kiss who is feeding these federal employees. What do you think of the U.S. government? Both parties right about now.

STANLEY: I think again, people need to put their political affiliation aside and the priority has to be to get people back to work, back on the payrolls then let's figure out what the solution is. I certainly have my own point of view, but I'm not going share it because I'm a rock and roller and I know my place.

BALDWIN: You want to bring everyone together.

STANLEY: I do, indeed.

BALDWIN: Maybe I'll see you at the garden. Got some fans here at the garden who may like to tag along. Thank you so much.

Up next, the race for President is becoming increasingly more crowded. Kamala Harris announces she will run in 2020. Saying she feels a responsibility to stand up and fight what she just said on the campaign trial moments ago. Also, the President's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, now walking back comments he said to CNN suggesting President Trump was in talks about building the Trump tower Moscow all the way through his election campaign. And saddled with riffraff. Chris Christie, once in charge of President Trump's transition team, is now taking shots at some of the biggest names from the Trump administration. Christie said his cabinet plan was literally thrown in the dumpster. We're back in a moment.

[14:15:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BALDWIN: We're back. You're watching CNN. Senator Kamala Harris is running for President in 20. She made her announcement this morning citing what she calls moral responsibility to challenge the current administration.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[14:20:00] SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D), CALIFORNIA: I love my country. I love my country. And I feel a sense of responsibility to stand up and fight for the best of who we are. And I'm prepared to fight and I know how to fight. And in particular when we're talk about fighting for the values that we hold sacred and dear, when it comes to talking about how we fight if the American people and have leadership in this country that is focused on the needs of the people instead of self- interest, I'm prepared to fight that way and I believe it will be a winning fight.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BALDWIN: Senator Harris joins a growing field of Democrats looking to take on President Trump. Among them, four women. Who have either announced exploratory committees or full on campaigns.

CNN national correspondent Kyung Lah. Not a massive surprise here, there was the anticipation, announcement from the California senator. She seems to be capitalizing on her experience as a prosecutor. What's her pitch so far?

KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's very broad on message. Heavy on themes. Not getting specific right now. She is in the get to know me stage. She is talking a lot about biography. She wants voters to get to know her. You heard her there. She kept bringing up the word fight and responded to a question about why is she best positioned to take on Donald Trump? It's because she says she's from a diverse state. She's a woman of color. And she truly embodies the values of this country.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HARRIS: We are a diverse country, yes, and some people would suggest that in diversity, when there's a diverse population, one cannot achieve unity. I reject that notion because this is my belief. Yes, we are diverse and we have so much more in common than what separates us and when we emphasize that commonality, when we recognize that commonality, we will achieve greater unity.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LAH: As far as specifics on the issues there isn't a whole lot of daylight at least right now she's sharing between her and a lot of the progressive candidates. Right now, she is trying to again make sure people get to know her. She says she is looking forward to a healthy debate with the other candidates.

BALDWIN: What about today, the symbolism around the announcement? The day the nation honors Dr. King. She's honoring another civil rights icon with her Presidential bid and logo.

LAH: Let's start with where exactly I am right now, we're at Howard University. Her alma mater. The university where she got to know her values that laid the foundation of civil rights and what pushed her forward and propelled her into her professional career into a life of public service. You mentioned what today e is, but also 47 years ago week, Shirley Chism announced she would be running for President. She became the first black woman to do so. If you look at the campaign video the Senator released today, that borrows some of the colors and a nod to her. So today heavily lay with symbolism. The slogan will be for the people. Kamala Harris for the people. That is what she said as she stood up in court. Heavy with all of this meaning and she hopes that will propel her campaign forward.

BALDWIN: If they don't give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair. Shirley Chism's words famously from years ago. Thank you so much at Howard University for us and a programming note for you. CNN will host a town hall with Kamala Harris. Jake Tapper will moderate next Monday night, 10:00 p.m. eastern from Des Moines, Iowa.

The President's attorney is trying to walk back comments that he made saying negotiations for Trump Tower Moscow continued up until election day. Why he's backing off a suggestion about why he could have spoken to Michael Cohen about his testimony to Congress.

[14:25:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BALDWIN: President Trump's own attorney Rudy Giuliani is changing his story about the business dealings with Russia. Now he's saying Trump doesn't remember discussions about Trump tower Moscow taking place. But that's not what he told CNN just yesterday.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: In his written answers to special counsel Robert Mueller's questions, what did President Trump have to say about the Trump Moscow project?

RUDY GIULIANI, ATTORNEY FOR THE PRESIDENT: He acknowledged they had conversations about it throughout 2015, 2016. He answered, right. He answered those questions fully and I think to the satisfaction of the special counsel.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: On top of this in an interview with "The New York Times," Giuliani is quoted as saying the Moscow projects talks were quote. going on the day I announced to the day I won. If this is true, it would mean Trump was actively

negotiating with Russia while at the same time pushing these changes on the trail in 2016.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you think generally about sanctions?

TRUMP: I think we ought to get on with our lives. I think the computers have complicated our lives greatly. The whole age of computer where nobody knows what's going on. NATO is obsolete. It was 67 year, over 60 years old. Covers the

Soviet Union which is no longer in existence. And NATO has to be rejiggered, changed. Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing.

[14:30:00] If we could get along with Russia, wouldn't that be a good thing instead of a bad thing?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: Also, in July of '16, Trump said his businesses were quote not involved in Russia. Fast forward to now. His attorney says Trump was negotiating a business deal well into the election that could have made Trump millions. With me now, Paul Callan -- let me just start with you. So now, the latest thread is that Giuliani doesn't remember. Doesn't remember. What's going on here? PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Well right. Pamela spoke with Rudy

Giuliani today where he starts to walk back basically entirely everything that you just laid out there. Where he's saying this Trump doesn't remember. How late the conversations continued and that that's partially because there are no records to that.