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Interview with former CEO of Starbucks Howard Schultz; President Trump Meeting With Chinese Delegation to Discuss Huawei; President Trump Spoke by Phone This Morning with Juan Guaido of Venezuela; Chicago Police and FBI Investigating Jussie Smollett Hate Crime; Roger Goodell to Give State of the League Address Tonight. Aired 10:30-11a ET
Aired January 30, 2019 - 10:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR, NEWSROOM: Not only did he tweet as much, but --
HOWARD SCHULTZ, FORMER CEO, STARBUCKS CORPORATION: Yes.
HARLOW: -- Maggie Haberman in "The New York Times" is reporting this morning that this week at a fundraiser, he told his supporters he wants you to run because he thinks it will help get him re-elected.
SCHULTZ: Well, he should be careful for what he wishes for.
HARLOW: Word association. I'm going to give you a name, and I want your first reaction. President Trump.
HARLOW: Secretary Clinton.
HARLOW: Mayor Bloomberg.
SCHULTZ: Highly respected.
HARLOW: Senator Kamala Harris.
SCHULTZ: I don't know her. Seems like a nice person, I just don't know her.
HARLOW: Speaker Pelosi.
SCHULTZ: Seasoned politician who means well.
HARLOW: Abraham Lincoln.
SCHULTZ: The best of the best.
HARLOW: What about folks who say we have already given a shot in the White House to a white billionaire businessman from New York? Granted, a different borough.
SCHULTZ: Yes, I'm very proud of my Brooklyn roots, as you know. But, you know, I'm self-made. I'm living proof of the American dream.
I think President Trump has done almost everything possible to discredit the dignity, the civility, the values, the respectfulness of the Oval Office, with no degree of any sense of responsibility to the American people.
What I would say is, look at my life experience. Not so much what I've done at Starbucks, but what I've learned along the way. And my deep, deep concern, my empathic concern for the American people, and also my concern for our standing in the world.
And I think the -- the word that really comes to mind is authentic, truthful leadership. But you mentioned Mike Bloomberg earlier, I can't speak for Mike Bloomberg, but if Mike Bloomberg would have run as an independent, there's a good chance he'd be president today.
HARLOW: He does not think so. Here's what he --
SCHULTZ: Well, he's not going to say that.
HARLOW: Well, here's what he said this week.
HARLOW: Pretty straightforward and pointed.
HARLOW: Quote, "The data was very clear and very consistent. Given the strong pull of partisanship and realities of the electoral college system, there is no way an independent can win. That's truer today than ever before."
Do you see something he doesn't?
SCHULTZ: Yes, I do.
SCHULTZ: Yes, I do.
HARLOW: He saw all the numbers. He poured a ton of money into this.
SCHULTZ: Yes. Well, this is a very different time than 2015, very different time.
HARLOW: It clearly sounds like you're saying, if it is someone on the far left like a Senator Elizabeth Warren, for example, versus Trump, then you think there is a path for you. But what if Joe Biden runs?
SCHULTZ: Well, we'll have to see.
HARLOW: What if someone more centrist runs? Is there -- is there --
SCHULTZ: I -- we'll have to --
HARLOW: -- so maybe there may be someone?
SCHULTZ: We'll have to see what happens, you know? First of all, we have a long way to go. I don't know if Vice President Biden's going to run, I don't know if Mike Bloomberg's going to run. I don't know if either one of them could -- could get the nomination.
HARLOW: In the final analysis, if you run, Howard, and if you run, you take more away from Democrats than Republicans, and we don't know. We don't know what that would be, and I've looked at all the polling --
HARLOW: -- back to the exit polls with Ross Perot. We just don't know.
SCHULTZ: This isn't Ross Perot.
HARLOW: But if that's the final analysis --
HARLOW: -- then President Trump gets a second term and that you pulled more from Democrats, would that keep you up at night?
SCHULTZ: I would never put myself in a position where I would be the person who re-elects Donald Trump. But that is not what I believe today.
JIM SCIUTTO, CNN ANCHOR, NEWSROOM: Well, there are a lot of folks who think --
SCIUTTO: -- that -- well, at least Democrats, right?
HARLOW: Everyone's asking me this morning, "Do you think he's going to run?" Because I've covered him for a decade. I've asked him this question for 10 years. I think he's -- I think he's going to run if it looks like it is going to be Elizabeth Warren, for example, or someone on the far left progressive side, versus Trump.
I don't know if he's going to run if Joe Biden gets in --
HARLOW: -- or Mike Bloomberg gets in. We'll see.
SCIUTTO: He'll decide, I imagine, too, if he thinks he has a chance.
HARLOW: Yes, exactly. You can hear the full interview. We put it all up on the podcast, "BOSS FILES," on iTunes. You can hear it there.
[10:34:17] SCIUTTO: Just ahead, protestors prepare to hit the streets as a political power struggle rages in Venezuela. Venezuela's opposition leader is calling for free elections, but the country's president says there will not be an election for some time.
SCIUTTO: This morning, U.S. and China are kicking off a critical round of trade talks in Washington. Time is running out.
TEXT: U.S.-China Trade Talks; U.S. delegation: United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer; Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin; Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. Chinese delegation: Chinese Vice Premier Liu He
SCIUTTO: If the two sides cannot reach an agreement, President Trump plans to hike tariffs on China to 25 percent beginning March 2nd. That's up from 10 percent today, already punishing sanctions -- tariffs at this point.
HARLOW: And already hurting U.S. companies as well. Here's what's complicating this even more. The U.S. has filed charges against a top executive of the Chinese telecom giant Huawei.
TEXT: Who is Meng Wanzhou? Huawei's Chief Financial Officer; Daughter of Huawei's founder; Arrested in Canada in December 2018; U.S. requests extradition; U.S. alleges Meng helped Huawei dodge U.S. sanctions on Iran
HARLOW: Our international correspondent Matt Rivers joins us live from Beijing.
So you have the Chinese delegation here. They're meeting as we speak in D.C., 31 days and counting. Are they optimistic?
MATT RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I think that they're realistic. I think for a long time, the Chinese thought that they could deal with the Trump administration as a whole.
But I think the splits in the administration, between the trade hawks like Peter Navarro, and the people who want a deal, like Steve Mnuchin, have really led the Chinese to come to the conclusion that, really, only one guy makes the ultimate decision, and that's going to be President Trump.
[10:40:03] And for that reason, they're going to be very happy that their top economic negotiator, Liu Hu, who's in Washington right now, is scheduled to meet with President Trump.
As for the prospects of a deal, look, there remains a ton of differences. You hear the U.S. side saying that they expect progress to be made. The Chinese, as usual, are holding things pretty close to the vest. So, really, the prospect of a deal, whether it actually happens, Jim and Poppy, is anyone's guess at this point.
SCIUTTO: So you have the extradition, now officially requested, of the CFO of Huawei, Meng Wanzhou, from Canada to the U.S.
We know that China -- in China, the judiciary inextricably linked to the powers that be -- so they tend to view it as being the same in the U.S. How do they view that and can they make a deal in the midst of that legal battle?
RIVERS: You know, it's hard to overstate how big Huawei is to China. It's a massive telecommunications firm. It's a point of national pride here. And China has been very upset by these indictments, by the extradition requests. They're really not happy about it at all.
But one thing that I noticed, guys, that was very interesting is, after the indictments came down, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs came out with this statement that was, of course, pretty strong. Said that they expect Meng Wanzhou to be released, called the U.S. to change course.
But that's what they've been saying for weeks now. They didn't take that opportunity to up the rhetoric, to turn up the heat a little bit.
And I think within that, the fact that they made that choice, shows you that they don't want Huawei to scuttle any potential trade deal, at least not yet.
HARLOW: Matt Rivers, thank you very much for the important reporting for us, live from Beijing. We'll keep you posted on the trade talks.
President Trump has personally reached out to Venezuela's leader Juan Guaido, which the U.S. now recognizes, this 35-year-old leader, as the president of Venezuela.
The White House says that President Trump spoke with him on the phone this morning to, quote, "reinforce his strong support for Venezuela's fight to regain its democracy."
SCIUTTO: Well, in a matter of just minutes, mass protests -- more of them -- expected in Venezuela and Guaido and the embattled president, Nicolas Maduro, fight for political control of this country.
With me now, senior international correspondent Nick Paton Walsh.
So President Trump, speaking to Guaido. America's choice, in effect, for president, the actual president of Venezuela. What are we hearing about that call and what effect is that having on the situation on the ground?
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's clearly a bid by the White House to put a bit of wind in the sails of Juan Guaido, as we are entering in sort of the hour where we expect to see, potentially, tens if not hundreds of thousands of protestors on the street, depending if they match the numbers of the protests a week ago.
And that call was very much a bid to endorse Mr. Guaido, the moves that he's been making to try and get some kind of grip on the levers of power inside Venezuela.
TEXT: Venezuela in Conflict; Support President Maduro: Russia, China, Iran, Turkey, Syria, Cuba, Bolivia, South Africa, Nicaragua. Support Self-Declared Acting President Guaido: U.S., U.K., E.U., Canada, Paraguay, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Colombia, Panama, Cost Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Argentina, Honduras, Australia.
PATON WALSH: I have to be honest with you, it's not really worked until now. The U.S. has been very quick to recognize him as the interim president.
He's self-declared. He said there's part of Venezuelan law that means he is technically now the successor. So it was last week where, in front of the last protest crowd, he swore himself in. Many people symbolically raising their right hand along with him, too. The question today is whether these calls will make more people come out onto the streets.
Now, a senior White House official has been going on to say that they're not in contact with the Maduro government or the Venezuelan military, and point out that there is a lot of rancor within lower parts of Venezuelan military. These are the people really keeping Maduro in power.
The generals still have their hands in the till, so to speak. So to some degree, when that money begins to run out through increased economic pressure from American sanctions, that could begin to crack.
But, guys, today is about these protests. Is it going to be peaceful? What kind of numbers are they going to see? And does that make those around Maduro rethink where they're going?
HARLOW: Nick, thank you for the reporting. And we'll watch these protests that are expected today.
Ahead for us, Chicago police and the FBI this morning are investigating what they call a possible hate crime, after an actor from the show, "Empire," was -- says he was attacked. We're going to have an update on this investigation next.
[10:48:39] HARLOW: Chicago police and the FBI are now looking for two people who reportedly attacked the "Empire" star Jussie Smollett in what they are calling a possible hate crime.
SCIUTTO: So far, investigators have not found any still images or video from security area -- cameras in the area of the incident. CNN national correspondent Sara Sidner, she's been following the story for us.
And, Sara, I know you've been getting into the details here. So what do we know now about what allegedly happened here?
SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. So Chicago police are asking for the public's help, now. Because as you mentioned, they're having difficulty trying to identify these two people that they are currently looking for after Smollett told them that they got his attention by yelling racial and homophobic slurs, and that they were hitting him in the face. And eventually, during the attack, he told police that they put a rope around his neck.
SIDNER (voice-over): Actor and singer Jussie Smollett is best-known for his role in the television series "Empire," where he plays Jamal, a black singer who is gay.
JUSSIE SMOLLETT AS JAMAL LYON, EMPIRE: -- the kind of song that makes a man love a man --
SIDNER (voice-over): Smollett is also black and gay, which may have been the motivation for an alleged attack against him in Chicago. Police say they are investigating a possible hate crime against the actor with the help of the FBI.
[10:49:56] Authorities say the "Empire" actor reported that the crime happened at about 2:00 in the morning, Tuesday, when two men got his attention by yelling out racial and homophobic slurs.
Smollett told police the men then began hitting him in the face, and poured an unknown chemical substance on him, adding that at some point during the incident, one of the offenders wrapped a rope around his neck.
During a follow-up interview, police say Smollett told them something new. That during the attack, the offenders uttered, "This is MAGA country."
Overnight, police announcing they are expanding the search area for surveillance video of the alleged attackers because, so far, in a place with a high number of private surveillance cameras, they cannot find any images of the two alleged attackers.
After combing through hundreds of hours of videos, the only image of Smollett police obtained from security cameras was inside the Subway sandwich shop near the location of the reported crime, and he was standing alone.
"Empire" director, Lee Daniels, taking to social media to voice his support for Mollett.
LEE DANIELS, DIRECTOR, "EMPIRE": You didn't deserve -- nor anybody deserves -- to have a noose put around your neck, to have bleach thrown on you, to be called, "Die, faggot, nigger," or whatever they said to you. We are better than that. America is better than that.
SIDNER (voice-over): Support for Smollett exploding online, from Hollywood A-listers to political heavyweights.
TEXT: The racist, homophobic attack on @JussieSmollett is an affront to our humanity. No one should be attacked for who they are or whom they love. I pray that Jussie has a speedy recovery & that justice is served. May we all commit to ending this hate once & for all.
SIDNER (voice-over): Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi tweeting, "The racist, homophobic attack on Jussie Smollett is an affront to our humanity. No one should be attacked for who they are or whom they love." Democratic presidential candidate and senator, Kamala Harris, also weighing in, calling Smollett "one of the kindest, most gentle human beings I know," and calling the attack an attempted modern-day lunching.
TEXT: @JussieSmollett is one of the kindest, most gentle human beings I know. I'm praying for his quick recovery. This was an attempted modern day lynching. No one should have to fear for their life because of their sexuality or color of their skin. We must confront this hate.
SIDNER: Now, Smollett himself has not talked about this publicly yet, but it did happen overnight around 2:00 in the morning on Tuesday. His publicist did tell us that he is indeed out of the hospital and recovering -- Poppy.
SCIUTTO: I mean, the circumstances are just horrific. Sara Sidner, we know you're going to stay on top of the story.
HARLOW: Thank you.
SCIUTTO: And we'll be right back.
[10:56:42] SCIUTTO: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will give his annual State of the League address later today. He might talk about a little football game that's going on this weekend, I think. Sunday, is it? Sunday. Yes.
HARLOW: We're getting him there. We're getting Jim excited for Super Bowl LIII. Andy Scholes is outside of Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
Good morning. What can we expect today?
ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Jim and Poppy. Well, we can expect Roger Goodell to get a lot of questions about what happened in the NFC championship game.
You know, for some reason, Goodell and the league, they decided not to address that big blown call in that Saints-Rams game, you know. And this was despite, you know, CNN, many other outlets reaching out to them, trying to get a comment about what the league thought about what happened.
So that blown call, and the officiating, and just, you know, why the league has decided not to say anything at all, will surely be a topic during the press conference this afternoon. Roger Goodell going to take to the podium at 1:00 p.m. Eastern. In the meantime, the NFL cancelling Maroon 5's halftime show press
conference that was scheduled for Thursday. The NFL said the artists will let their show do the talking as they prepare to take the stage this Sunday.
Now, this year's act has been in the news because, you know, many artists had said they would not do the Super Bowl halftime show in support of Colin Kaepernick.
Now, Tom Brady, he, of course, a big topic of conversation for this year's Super Bowl. He's 41 years old now. He'd be the oldest quarterback to win a Super Bowl if he can beat the Rams on Sunday.
And Brady said, you know, as he's gotten older, he appreciates this opportunity to play in this game so much more. And he had some fun with the media yesterday, when he was asked if he thinks him and LeBron James are alike.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TOM BRADY, QUATERBACK, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS: We're similar athletes, LeBron and I. Both great size and speed, jumping ability, shooting, not quite. No, he's a much better athlete than me. I wouldn't change anything. And you know, I just love being here. I love representing our team. I love trying to go out there and win a world championship.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHOLES: Now, on Sunday, Tony Romo's going to call his first Super Bowl alongside Jim Nantz on CBS. This season, you know, fans have been in awe of Romo's ability to predict plays before they happen on the field.
And I caught up with Romo yesterday and asked him how he does it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TONY ROMO, FORMER QUARTERBACK, DALLAS COWBOYS: You just try and look at plays, players, mannerisms, everything. And then you try and just hopefully make it fun for the viewers at home.
And, you know, just passion comes out and you're trying to, you know, show that passion to people at home. And, you know, you study something long enough in your life, hopefully you get lucky once in a while.
SCHOLES: And with your ability to see what's happening on the field, many people think you've got a future in coaching. Will we ever see Coach Romo in the Super Bowl?
ROMO: Not any time soon, but I'm sure at some point in the future, I'll want to do that part of it. But just not right now. Just like where life is, and I got young boys and I want to spend time with them.
(END VIDEO CLIP) SCHOLES: So there you go, guys. We could see Coach Romo in the future. And he did give us a prediction on the score of the Super Bowl. He said it's going to be 28-24, but he didn't tell us who was going to win. So we'll wait and see --
SCIUTTO: Oh, we know --
SCHOLES: -- if that happens.
SCIUTTO: -- we know who he thinks is going to win. Come on.
HARLOW: Andy, thank you. My -- do you get to go to the big game, by the way?
[10:59:58] SCHOLES: Looks like it, Poppy. Fingers crossed that, you know, I'll have that credential. But, you know. Looks like it's going to happen.
HARLOW: Lucky man. All right. We'll see you tomorrow, Andy.
SCHOLES: All right.
HARLOW: Thank you all for being with us. We will see you here tomorrow morning.