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President Trump Directing The U.S. State Department To Cut Off Aid To Three Central American Countries, El Salvador, Guatemala And Honduras; Former Vice President Joe Biden Facing Accusations Of Kissing A Woman Without Consent; Police Have Made An Arrest In The Murder Of A South Carolina College Student; Critical Deadline For The Crowded Field Of Democratic Candidates Running For President 2020; New Statistics The Number Of Americans Having Sex Is At A Record Low; One- On-One Interview with Congressman Denny Heck. Aired 2-3p ET

Aired March 31, 2019 - 14:00   ET


[14:00:00] FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST: -- live ammunition and a power military group loaded in the (INAUDIBLE). At least 45 activists have been killed according to international rights groups.

Thanks to all of you for being part of my program this week. I will see you next week.

FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. Thanks so much for joining us this Sunday. I'm Fredericka Whitfield.

We begin with chaos at the southern border. President Trump directing the U.S. state department to cut off aid to three Central American countries, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. Around $1.3 billion was allocated to the region. Mainly those three countries between last year and this year according to our recent study.

President Trump says those countries set up migrant caravans for entering into America. President Trump also threatening to shut down parts or all of the border as soon as this week and announcing he will travel to the U.S.-Mexico border in California this Friday. Meanwhile, his acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney telling CNN who is to blame for the border crisis.


MICK MULVANEY, ACTING CHIEF OF STAFF: Look, there's a lot of good ways to help solve this problem. Congress could do it, but they are not going to. Mexico could help to did it. They need to do a little bit more. Honduras could do more. Nicaragua could do more. El Salvador could do more. And if we are going to give these countries hundreds of millions of dollars we would like them to do more. That, Jake, I would respectfully submit to you is not an unreasonable position. We could prevent a lot of what's happening on the southern border by preventing people from moving into Mexico in the first place.

(END VIDEO CLIP) WHITFIELD: Border officials say they are at the breaking point. Hundreds of migrants are being released in south Texas. Several border facilities are well past capacity and resources are strained.

So let's go first to Brownsville, Texas where our border pro text facility there is over capacity. CNN's Savidge is on the story there.

So what more can you tell us about this big release of migrants?


Yes. We are in the Brownsville bus station which is located in downtown Brownsville. This is essentially where the handoff point occurs. It is where the federal authorities, in this case ICE or CBP, Customs and Border protection will bus those migrants that they are releasing here. They usually come on charter bus, just drop them off. And then this is where the city of Brownsville as well as Cameron County is ready to receive them. And they have a good process that seems to be working for the time being.

They had about 300 migrants, they say, were dropped off in the Brownsville area on Friday. They had 500 yesterday, so you can see the numbers are going up. And there's been quite a few people that have gone through this facility here today.

I had a conversation with the mayor to just ask him, how is the city coping? Here's what he said.


MAYOR TONY MARTINEZ, BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS: So far we have been able to handle anything that's come our way, and I think we can so long as we, have you know, adequate notice to know what's coming.


SAVIDGE: And that's been part of the problem, the adequate notice. There has not been a lot of heads up or direct conversation between the federal authorities and the local authorities here. And there's a lot of things that the local authorities have to handle. They not only have to make sure that all of the migrants have proper documentation, but then where do they go next and how do they get there?

In some cases they are providing telephones to allow the families here to communicate the families in the U.S. Then they work out some kind of payment for a bus ticket or an airline ticket. Then they have got to the either get them on a bus or transport them to an airport. That all eats up resources that are part of the city of Brownsville. Thirty to 40 police officers alone are being detailed to just this job. It's a lot of money, and that is going to be the real problem down the road. They say right now they could handle up to 1,000 a day. Anything beyond that will become problematic -- Fredericka.

WHITFIELD: All right. Martin Savidge, thank you so much. We will check back with you. So the U.S. state department stays it will cut off aid to the northern

triangle known as the Central American countries of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. President Trump said those countries, his words, haven't done a thing for the U.S., so he will not pay them anymore.

Joining me right now congressional reporter Karoun Demirjian and White House reporter for "the Washington Post" Toluse Olorunnipa.

Karoun, so some experts say, you know, this move is likely to increase the number of migrants leaving their countries and heading to the U.S., so could this ultimately backfire?

KAROUN DEMIRJIAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: It certainly could. I mean, look, the common refrain you hear in response to when the Trump administration says we are going to withhold foreign aid or cut it off is that it's in the national security interest of the United States to invest something in these countries where the heart problem lies. It is creating this migrant flow that's coming north to the border.

The issue is that, you know, they are not perfectly managed country, but you take money away and you say do more. How do you necessarily square that math? It doesn't necessarily work. And so if you are potentially going to make a bad situation even more problematic, even worse, that's just going to increase number of people who want to leave and, you know, risk what they can but head towards the United States border in the hopes that they will be able to make a better life for themselves and their families.

So it's talking tough and acting tough because that's the way the President has projected himself about, you know, on working on the border and everything that it follows before and behind the border, but what comes next I don't think anybody in the administration has really said, OK, well, we think that because we do this, we are going to get a better result two steps ahead. They haven't specified that yet at least. It seems like it is just punishment more than the plan for what the move is going to end gender (ph).

[14:05:39] WHITFIELD: So Toluse, that's the potential fallout, right, that you withhold aid and that only makes the situation even that much more dire potentially in those countries thereby more people might want to flee and head, you know, towards the U.S. border, so why isn't the White House seeing it that way?

TOLUSE OLORUNNIPA, WHITE HOUSE REPORTER, BLOOMBERG: Well, this is a President that has been very impulsive on this issue as Karoun said. The President has sort threatened to do a number of different things or over the past couple of years. He has threatened to close down the border. He is threatened to withdraw this funding that is going Central America.

This isn't necessarily a President that's sort of getting into the weeds on policy and looking at how things actually take place in Central America and how withdrawing these funds would actually potentially make the problem worse. This is a President who believes that when we give foreign aid to countries that they should do whatever the -- the American government calls for them to do, and the President believes that these three countries could solve the problem with a snap of a finger by, you know, taking action to keep their people from leaving and from fleeing violence and trouble within the bound rivers their own country.

It's not quite that simple and this is a President that wants to solve a problem with a snap of a finger, but it's much more complex than that. And I think that people within the state department and people who are advising the President may get close to him and give him some advice, that if he were to withdraw this funding, we could see the numbers grow even higher of people fleeing the violence and the problems in Central America.

WHITFIELD: So listen to what acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said to CNN's Jake Tapper this morning about, you know, this breaking point, at least this condition at the border.


MULVANEY: It's a humanitarian crisis. It's a security crisis. I think at least now people are starting to realize that we were not exaggerating a couple of months ago when we had this nationwide debate about the wall. So I hear what you are saying that people say it is working but the proof is in the numbers. It's not working well enough to help us solve our border crisis, and that's what the President is focused on.


WHITFIELD: So Karoun, did the White House cause any of this crisis that's described by Mick Mulvaney?

DEMIRJIAN: Well, I mean, there's rhetoric that's been coming from the White House is what we have seen that it is. I think it is also a question of, you know, mismatch in a way. I mean, many of the uptick in the -- in the border crossers, that some people trying to make asylum claims in the United States, that's people who are coming through ports of entry, not necessarily people coming through the less regulated parts of the border.

So I think that you have seen, you know, both the talk from the administration is part of what has been loading to this focus on the border and the questions of a crisis, but also various policy shifts, various things that are happening in Central America. I mean, there also has been a measured uptick in the last month I believe in the number of people who are arriving to make these claims to try to cross in.

So you can't really boil it down to just one factor, even though that would be nice and convenient if you could because maybe you could maybe fix or change that. But it's a more varied collection of influences that are making this a situation where everybody stands potentially to lose if they can't figure out some sort of system that is both fair to the people who want to secure the borders but also fair to the people who are risking everything to try to make a better life for themselves. WHITFIELD: At the same time, Toluse, you know, perhaps, you know,

what is happening in terms of the release of hundreds of migrants who have been, you know, at facilities in Brownsville and some other, you know, border state cities, I should say that, they are being released. Does that help the President's argument of, you know, what have to do, you know, in terms of him declaring this emergency?

OLORUNNIPA: Well, it's clear that there is no longer space for holding some of these migrants in the U.S. facilities so they do have to be released. The President has railed against catch and release in the past, but he's at a point where there's no point but to do catch and release. So the President is able to make the argument that something needs to be done because that's not necessarily how the migration system is supposed to work, that, you know, people are just sort of going to be released into the country. And it's not clear whether or not the U.S. government will be able to keep track of them.

So, on that side the President does have some truth to his argument that something needs to be done. But his solution is to build a wall which wouldn't necessarily stop the people from coming and presenting themselves for asylum and in some place - in some cases they are presenting themselves at the ports of entry. They are presenting themselves at places where there already is fencing and they are being allowed into the country, allowed to make their asylum claims and then released to come into the country and then appear to -- before a judge to make an asylum claim.

So the President does have some -- some parts of this on his side, but his solution which is very simplistic does not seem to address the actual problem that -- that the country is facing on the border right now.

[14:10:33] WHITFIELD: All right. Toluse Olorunnipa and Karoun Demirjian, thanks to both of you. Appreciate it.

DEMIRJIAN: Thank you.

WHITFIELD: All right. Straight ahead. A shocking accusation. New claims today that the Saudis hacked Amazon founder Jeff Bezos' phone. We will talk about that next.

Plus, former vice President Joe Biden is defending himself over unwanted kiss.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I feel Joe Biden put his hands on my shoulders, get up very close to me from behind, lean in, smell my hair and then plant a slow kiss on the top of my head.



[14:15:20] WHITFIELD: Welcome back. New questions today over who hacked Amazon founder Jeff Bezos' phone

to obtain private text messages which later led to the "National Enquirer's" expose of the billionaire's affair. In an op-ed the security consultant working with Bezos Gavin De Becker questions the Enquirer's sourcing and how they got their hands on these private texts. He also points out how unusual it was that AMI, the parent company of the Enquirer acted to publically reveal its sources identity.

He writes in part our, investigators and several experts concluded with high confidence that the Saudis had access to Bezos' phone and gained private information.

AMI responded saying in part, despite the false and unsubstantiated claims of Mr. De Becker, American Media has and continues to refute the unsubstantiated claims that the materials for our report were acquired with the help of anyone other than the single source who first brought them to us.

CNN has independently reached out to De Becker and the Saudis, but so far we've not received any comment.

Democratic congressman Denny Heck is on the House Intel committee and joins us now.

So congressman, good to see you. So De Becker, the security consultant, you know, for Bezos does not offer any concrete evidence in his op-ed, but if these findings are true, how concerned are you as a member of Congress?

REP. DENNY HECK (D), INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: Well, Fred, this isn't just a question of who hacked Jeff Bezos' phone. This is a question of who hacked to death the journalists living in America working for Jeff Bezos' newspaper, "the Washington Post" to death in a brutal, vicious, ugly, horrific incident.

Look, it's long past time that we re-evaluated our relationship with Saudi Arabia, simply put. We can have treaty alliances and all sorts of mutual agreements when our interests are in accord. Those are based on security considerations or mutual self-interest, but they are not sustainable over the long term if they are not based on shared values. And clearly we are getting to the point we are questioning whether or not there's enough shared values to have a sustained relationship that is being brought into question.

So frankly to put it bluntly, Fred. As far as I'm concerned, the Saudi Arabia can take their royal and shove it.

WHITFIELD: So it's that much more disturbing that you have still got unanswered questions about the "Washington Post" columnist's Khashoggi's death there at the Saudi Arabian embassy in Turkey, and then you have this claim that Saudi Arabia may in some way or could have been involved in hacking the phone of the owner of "the Washington Post," Amazon owner Jeff Bezos. Do you see a coincidence here? I mean, what are your curiosities about these? Do we call it a coincidence? I mean, you know, what? HECK: Well, Fred, I'm a big NCIS fan. Jethro Gibbs has one of his

rules I don't believe in coincidences and in this case I don't believe in coincidences. The fact of the matter is there's something entirely too coincidental about this to believe it whatsoever.

Look. Again, it's far past time that we reevaluated our relationship with Saudi Arabia because of specifically incidents just like this. They call into question what kind of a relationship we are going have with that country going forward. And need I remind your viewers that it was Saudi money and some Saudi Arabians who were involved in the original 9/11 attack on America.

It's time to question this relationship. Yes, we have had mutual interests in the Middle East over time, but question now is do they Trump consideration of all of these other matters, and I think it's time to bring it forward.

WHITFIELD: What can Congress do?

HECK: And have a real conversation about it.

WHITFIELD: What do you see the role of Congress in this?

HECK: Well, through the foreign affairs committee and through the intelligence committee and through all sorts of other committees, we have oversight responsibilities. I wouldn't at all be hesitant to have some hearings on this matter and actually air them in public as much as possible, even to the degree that if he were willing to cooperate, having the private investigator come forward. I have long believed that sunshine is the best disinfectant. So a little bit of transparency here I think would be very, very healthy.

WHITFIELD: OK. I want to turn now to Brunei. You know, the Muslim majority country is facing global criticism right now after announcing it will fully implement Islamic law this week that would allow death by stoning for adultery and homosexual sex.

Actor and human rights activist George Clooney, you know, put out a statement calling for the boycott to hotels linked to Brunei saying this, quoting now, "every single time we stay at or dine at any of these nine hotels we are putting money directly into the pocket of men who choose to stone and whip to death their own citizens for being gay and accused of adultery. Are we really going to help pay for these human rights violations?"

What are your thoughts on whether a boycott should be led and if it would help?

[14:20:40] HECK: I condemn this proposal by the government in Brunei in the strongest terms possible. I call upon President Trump and secretary of state Pompeo to condemn it in the strongest terms possible. Frankly, at the end of the day it's just flat uncivilized behavior. And I hope that they will change their mind.

I can't ever afford to stay in those kind of hotels and never have and doubt I ever would in my life but for those who can, I think it's a good first step but it's only a first step.

WHITFIELD: All right. Congressman Denny Heck, thanks so much for your time. The appreciate it.

HECK: You are welcome.

WHITFIELD: Up next, former vice President Joe Biden facing accusations of kissing a woman without consent. Now some of his potential 2020 Democratic competitors are weighing in. What they are saying about the scandal right after this.


[14:25:58] WHITFIELD: For the first time former vice President Joe Biden is responding to allegations that he made a Nevada politician feel uneasy. Nevada assemblywoman Lucy Flores says Biden kissed her on the back of her head in 2014 at a campaign rally. She says it was inappropriate and made her feel uncomfortable.

Biden responded this morning saying in part, quoting now, "in my many years on the campaign trail and in public life I have offered countless handshakes, hugs, expresses of affection supporting, comfort and not once, never, did I believe I acted inappropriately. If it is suggested I did so, I will listen respectfully, but it was never my intention."

Miss Flores talked to our own Jake Tapper about her encounter and why she's telling her story now.


LUCY FLORES (D), FORMER LT. GOVERNOR CANDIDATE: Well, it happened all so suddenly. You know, anyone who has ever been at a rally recognizes that there is just chaos. There's a lot of energy and everyone is running back and forth. Eva Longoria was there. We were all lined up next to the stage. Eva was in front of me. Joe Biden was behind me. I'm kind of preparing myself to give the remarks, very last days before the election and very unexpectedly and out of nowhere I feel Joe Biden put his hands on my shoulders, get up very close to me from behind, lean in, smell my hair and then plant a slow kiss on the top of my head.

And that in and of itself might not sound like it's a very serious thing. That in and of itself might sound like it was innocent and well-intentioned. But in the context of it as a person that had absolutely no relationship with him afterwards, as a candidate who was going to make my argument as to why I should be elected second in command of that have state, to have the vice President of the United States do that to me so unexpectedly and out of nowhere.

It was just shocking. It was just shocking because you don't expect that kind of intimate behavior. You don't expect that kind of intimacy from someone so powerful and someone who you just have no relationship whatsoever to touch you and to feel you and to be so close to you in that way. So I, frankly, just didn't even know how to react. I was just shock. I felt powerless. I felt like I couldn't move. I just didn't even know how to process it.

And my bigger point that I have been making is that in these power dynamic situations and women are subjected to this in -- in the political setting but in work settings all the time that you just kind of process it and then you move on because you have a job to do.

And frankly, what do you stay? Who do you tell? Who -- there really isn't a mechanism to deal with it so that's what I did. I went on and made my case and campaigned and frankly then went on with my life because, again, what do you do.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN CHIEF WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Assemblywoman Flores, you right in the piece that you wrote "the Cut" that you know people might accuse you of being politically motivated here. We should point out supported Bernie Sanders in 2016 running for President. He's running again. You attended a Beto O'Rourke campaign yesterday event yesterday. You have told us that you haven't endorsed any candidate yet. You haven't decided who you want to support.

But how would you respond to somebody out there who says she's attending a Beto rally. She supported Bernie in 2016. Politics might be at least partially motivated you here. What are you telling those people?

FLORES: I would say Politics was definitely the impetus. The reason why we are having these conversations about vice President Joe Biden is because he is considering running for President. And frankly, the reason why I felt compelled to tell you something was because over the years as this behavior was documented as it was frankly dismissed by the media and not taken seriously that conversation was not coming up in the discussions about whether or not he would in a complete analysis of his -- of his history, of his record, as we go through the vetting process for all of these candidates, that important aspect was being left out.


[14:30:17] WHITFIELD: All right. CNN's Rebecca Buck is covering this.

A lot of reaction to this story including from 2020 candidates. What are you hearing?

REBECCA BERG, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: That's right, Fredricka. We are getting reactions from candidates for President on the Democratic side. Over the past 24, 48 hours, these candidates saying that Lucy Flores should be believed, but they are stopping short for the most part of saying that her accusations should disqualify Joe Biden from running for President. Take a listen to the lank of reactions that we have been hearing.


SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, I think that's a decision for the vice President to make. I'm not sure that one incident alone disqualifies everybody, but her point is absolutely right. This is an issue not just the Democrats or Republicans, the entire country has got to take seriously. It is not acceptable when a woman goes work on any kind of environment that she feels anything less than comfortable and safe. And this is an issue the entire country has got to work on.

SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I have no reason not to believe her, Jonathan. And I think we know from campaigns and from politics that people raise issues and they have to address them, and that's what will have to do with the voters if he gets into the race.

JOHN HICKENLOOPER (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, again, I don't know aside from this one issue, I haven't -- even this issue I don't know all the details but I think that's why we have an election. That's that process.


HICKENLOOPER: But certainly it's very disconcerting, and I think, that again, women have to be heard, and we should really -- we should start by believing them.

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I believe Lucy Flores and Joe Biden needs to give an answer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Should he not run as a result?

WARREN: That's for Joe Biden to decide.

JULIAN CASTRO (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I believe Lucy Flores. We need to live in a nation where people can hear her truth.


BUCK: Now Fred, it's not clear at this early stage how this could impact Biden's nascent bid, expected bid for President. Of course, we don't know if there will be more allegation like this. But it says a lot that the former vice President felt he needed to directly respond with the statement he put out this weekend and we'll have to wait and see.

Are there more allegations of this kind? Does this discussion continue into the next month? And, of course, we're waiting for Biden to announce his Presidential bid. Is this going to be part of conversation when that happens? That could obviously have a negative impact his rollout - Fred.

WHITFIELD: And there have a lot of people who described him in his behavior and especially seeing it on, you know, videotape, et cetera, that he is a rather touchy-feely guy. And you know, there is a question about whether that - those, you know, that kind of behavior overall will be made into an issue if he indeed gets into the race. How is his camp preparing for that?

BUCK: Well, you know, it is interesting that you bring this up because this has been sort of a known thing about Joe Biden over the years. It's been a quality that people discussed about him that he is very touchy-feely. That he is very intimate with women when he is in public and now we are seeing that in a different context.

So I think his team is having to adjust and having to adapt to this new political landscape where in the aftermath of the Me Too environment these things are taken much more seriously. It is a no longer viewed as something endearing but is something perhaps predatory or insensitive. And so, this is going to be they need to adopt to. And he as a candidate is going to have to come out and express sensitivity to these issues.

WHITFIELD: All right. Rebecca Buck, thank you so much. Appreciate it.

BUCK: Thank you.

WHITFIELD: All right. Police have made an arrest in the murder of a South Carolina college student. We will hear why police a case of mistaken identity could have factored in to crime.


[14:38:11] WHITFIELD: Police have arrested a 24-year-old man in connection with the death of a missing South Carolina student. Police say 21-year-old Samantha Josephson was last seen early Friday morning getting into a car near the University of South Carolina. Investigators think she mistakenly got into the suspect's car after getting separated from her friends.


CHIEF WILLIAM HOLBROOK, COLUMBIA POLICE DEPARTMENT: What we know now is that she had in fact summoned an Uber ride and was waiting for that ride -- that Uber ride to come we believe. We don't have a statement or any evidence other than to suggest our observations on the video. We believe she simply mistakenly got into this particular car thinking it was an Uber ride.


WHITFIELD: Samantha Josephson's body was found later that day by hunters about 90 miles outside the city.

CNN's Jean Casarez is with me now.

So Jean, how were investigators able to make an arrest so quickly.

JEAN CASAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is an amazing just work with law enforcement, forensic investigators, but I want you to remember the turkey hunters. I'm going to go through the timeline here without the turkey hunters this could have taken weeks, months or years.

All right. It was Thursday, March 28th. It was 2:09 in the morning. She had just separated from her girlfriends and had summoned that Uber driver, police say, and it shows that she got into this black car at that time. Friday, at 1:30 in the afternoon, her roommates, her girlfriends, they realized she was gone. They couldn't find her. She never got home. So they summoned police saying our friend is gone. While investigators were talking with her friends to get a description

of what had happened and the timeline, there were turkey hunters 90 miles away, turkey hunting, in a remote, desolate rural area. They found a body, and that was about 3:45 Friday afternoon.

So they realized it matched the description. It matched the clothing that she had been wearing. So now there's an all-out alert to find this black car. The surveillance video showed she got into and it was Saturday, yesterday morning, around 3:00 in the morning that a canine officer in his vehicle found the car and pulled it over. The suspect fled. He began a pursuit on foot. Got him, arrested him, and what they found, Fred, was car full of blood along with bleach and cleaning wipes and Windex like for the back windows, and they also say that child restraints were on in that back seat so no one could have even gotten out if they tried.

[14:40:02] WHITFIELD: Wow. That is so troubling.

All right. Jean Casarez. Thank you so much.

All right. Still ahead, Democrats vying to be President are in the final hours of first-quarter fund-raising. So what do these early donations tell us about the state of the race?

More on that straight ahead.


[14:45:01] WHITFIELD: Today is a critical deadline for the crowded field of Democratic candidates running for President 2020. Today marks the official end of the financial quarterly, and candidates are in a race for cash to show voters they not only have the financial means to be competitive but the fund-raising totals will also determine who qualifies for upcoming debates.

Here now is CNN's Jeff Zeleny.


SANDERS: We are going to put together the strongest grass roots movement in the history of American politics.

JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Bernie Sanders and Beto O'Rouke.

BETO O'ROURKE (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: What I hope will be the largest grass roots effort this country has ever seen.

ZELENY: Facing their first test of who is building the biggest grass roots army and raising the most money. After each racing about $6 million on their first day of the campaign, they and all Democratic candidates are now scrambling to meet the first fund raising deadline of the 2020 primary on Sunday. It's a frantic multi-million dollar dash.

SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Raising money. So this is a topic that we don't like to discuss, but you can't win an election without knowing how to raise money.

ZELENY: Suddenly Kamala Harris is trying to lower expectations telling donors we know that some of them will have out-raised us. That's OK because I can guarantee we won't be outworked.

As fund-raising appeals pour in flooding in boxes, it's not only how much the candidates raise but how they raise it.

WARREN: And today, this very day, I'm not off doing a fund-raisers behind closed doors with a bunch of millionaire. I'm here with you.

ZELENY: Elizabeth Warren swearing off high-dollar events trying to match the enthusiasm Sanders O'Rourke, Harris and now Pete Buttigieg are seeing in the opening round of the race.

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Obviously there's a lot of fund-raising that goes on but it's not about getting the most dollars. Don't get me wrong. The more you can help the better.

ZELENY: The recent Buttigieg (INAUDIBLE) has been raising to capture the enthusiasm including a stop at a high-rise apartment at the Trump international hotel and tower in New York. The first-quarter fundraising period will offer the first true measure how candidates are catching on among big donors and those inspired descendants' small contributors.

KLOBUCHAR: I looked back at all my old address book and I set what it now an all-time Senate record. I raised $17,000 from ex-boyfriends.

ZELENY: This year, nearly all Democrats are limiting the kind of money they accept.

SEN. CORY BOOKER (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: So I will not take money from corporate PACs. I will not take money from federal lobbyists. I will not take money from Pharma executives.

ZELENY: Fund-raising is also a metric to qualify for the Democratic debates. Candidates must have at least 65,000 unique donors from at least 20 states to reach the debate states.

John Delaney who is largely funding his own campaign making this unusual offer in hopes of making the cut.

JOHN DELANEY (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: People can donate a dollar to my campaign, become involve in the campaign and we will donate $2 to one of 11 chairs that they choose from.

ZELENY: Now qualifying for that first debate in June is critical to all candidates. A strong fund-raising report or weak one could change the order of the candidates before then. But for now a lot of donors we spoke to said they are simply watching this race play out. One donor told me this. I like so many candidates I may give money to a bunch of them.

Jeff Zeleny, CNN, Washington.


WHITFIELD: And differing political views can cause a little bit of stress in families and friendships. In this week's staying well, we see how to find a healthy medium in your relationships.


JEANNE SAFER, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: You do not have to tolerate something that's going to be divisive and make everybody miserable.

I'm Jeanne Safer and I'm a psychoanalyst.

RICK BROOKHISER, SENIOR EDITOR, NATIONAL REVIEW: I'm Rick Brookhiser. I'm a senior editor of "National Review."

SAFER: How long have we been married?

BROOKHISER: Thirty-nine years in September.

BROOKHISER: I'm a conservative Republican. She is a liberal Democrat. You know, we used to fight a little bit. And then overtime we learned just not to do that. It didn't result in me or Jeanne changing either one of our minds.

[14:50:02] SAFER: As a therapist the issue is not politics. It's psychology. I interviewed 50 people for this book. I would say about 48 of them were busy trying to stick their opinions down the other person's throat.

If you want your marriage to be better with a friendship or relationship with your child, I hereby give everybody permission to say let's not talk about this and stick with it. You don't have to agree with his positions. It makes a relationship closer. It also says I know the place of politics and I know the place of personality and character and I choose character over anything.

BROOKHISER: We got the wrong key.


WHITFIELD: Up next, are Americans not having sex? A new report may surprise you, but what's leading to this lack of intimacy? We will ask an expert after this.


[14:55:19] WHITFIELD: All right. Lots of Netflix but apparently not much chill. According to new statistics the number of Americans having sex is at a record low, and we can thank in part technology.

"The Washington Post" this week laid out new statistics that show not only are we not having sex but the number of young men not having sex is at a 30-year high.

With me now is Harlan Cohen who is a relationship expert and the author of the book "Getting Naked, Five Steps To Finding The Love Your Life. "

Harlan, good to be with us. This is one of those segments that will make had a whole lot of people blush.


WHITFIELD: So what is behind these stats that show our younger generation, particularly young men who would be at their peak at that age bracket, you know, not having sex.

COHEN: Absolutely. And you know, it's another Sunday after a sexless Saturday night for more --

WHITFIELD: What's going on?

COHEN: For more 18 to 34-year-olds, right.

Yes. So, I'm messenger here. I'm the expert on no sex. This is who they call. The no-sex expert here. And I can tell you I look at this not as a sex issue. I look at this this as an intimacy issue.


COHEN: I have been working with teen, 20-something for over 20 years, and never before have I seen them struggle when it comes to saying what they think, expressing how they feel during daylight hours while sober.


COHEN: Now this is the problem. When you say what you think and express how you feel, the people who you are communicating with may respond in many ways.

WHITFIELD: Might find you attractive or appealing.

COHEN: Absolutely. They might say yes and they might say --.


COHEN: They might not be interested. And when it comes to rejection --

WHITFIELD: OK. So what is behind people not being - I mean, what is behind, it sounds like people being so anti-social. What do you blame?

COHEN: You know, it is so hard to express themselves because when people don't respond there this adverse reaction to rejection. They are not trained when it comes to expressing themselves and when they do there's a good chance someone might get uncomfortable and they can't do it at work because of sexual harassment.

So really, where do people learn how to communicate face to face to be able to engage in real relationships and experiment with intimacy? And they don't teach it in schools. There aren't classes on this. And what we have seen is more ways for people to numb out and disengage through Netflix, through cell phones, through apps and there's ways where people can consume with a record number of people consuming pornography so there's this sense of false intimacy, this inability to communicate. And we see this all converging. And this is -- this is the space that I live in helping 20 somethings, helping men to be able to get comfortable with the uncomfortable.

WHITFIELD: So the general social survey agrees with you, and, you know, blames largely this addiction to social media, gaming gadgets, I mean, all this technology that's standing in the way of people being able to zero in on what another -- take the time, I guess, you know, to develop a relationship. So what kind of advice are you going to give people now?

COHEN: So I would say --

WHITFIELD: A lot to say about that. I've got it. I've got a point to make.

COHEN: I went shopping.

It's easy to blame those things, but instead of blaming those things, if you are somebody who craves intimacy asking yourself the question why is it so hard for me to say what I think and express how I feel? How could I put myself in more rooms with more people having shared experiences over time because that's how you build meaningful relationships is shared experiences over time. And if you look at more people living at home, if you look at more people working remote, if you look at more people being isolated, they are not in rooms, they are not in people, they are not communicating, so the answer is, put yourself in places where you can share what you think, express how you feel, do things so you feel amazing about yourself. So anyone who gets an invitation into your life is the luckiest person in the world because they are missing out on you. You are there.

WHITFIELD: What are they thinking?

So then wait a minute. So then while you may come to the table like that, you are like, OK, I'm an open book. I want to, you know, engage with people and talk it up, you have got to make sure that you are in a place where everybody else is of the same mindset because then there you are all alone available.

COHEN: Absolutely.

WHITFIELD: What do you do?

COHEN: And this is one of the most important things is you can communicate in a safe way. When you expression interest, when you communicate, when you have a conversation with someone, you are telling them I'm interested in getting to know you.

And here's the big shift. Instead of trying to think I want to be sexual or I want physical intimacy, ask yourself the question are you as interesting as you are attractive when you see interesting people and engage them from that level? And if you genuinely are interested and you are someone who believes you are interesting, then great things will happen. But this takes training, this takes practice and it takes having people in your corner to help you. So if you do get rejected, and let me just make this point.