Return to Transcripts main page
Whale Died With 22 Kilos of Plastic in Its Stomach; Candidates Who Curse: Expletive Not Deleted; Arsenal Top Newcastle for 10th Straight At-Home Win; Atlanta Hawks Rookie Guard Trae Young in Contention for Rookie of Year; Trae Young is Interviewed about His NBA Success So Far. Aired 12-1a ET
Aired April 2, 2019 - 00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Hello, everybody, thank you for joining us I'm John Vause, you're watching CNN NEWSROOM.
Ahead this hour, here we go for Brexit 2.0. And every alternative plan for the E.U. is voted down by the British Parliament. But this time, they were making protesters.
Also ahead, he really means it. Aides to Donald Trump says his threat to close the border is not a bluff and it will happen unless more can be done to stop the incorporating flow of undocumented immigrants into the U.S.
And the cruel death of a pregnant sperm whale and the direct link from your home to the ocean and how she died.
VAUSE: British lawmakers have rejected four more alternate plans for Brexit including to remain in the E.U.'s single market. The one which received the most support on Monday was a second referendum to confirm any deal approved by Parliament. Bianca Nobilo on what could come next.
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The soft Brexit options are the customs union and the common market 2.0 have been talked about in the press and in parliamentary circles as possibilities to command a majority already in the House of Commons but neither did in the votes on Monday night.
The customs union only failed to pass by three votes but still it means that Theresa May's deal gets more support, votes wise, than any of the alternatives.
Tonight was also full of drama, with one of the prime ministers own members of Parliament, Nick Boles, an MP for nine years, resigning the prime minister's party on the floor of the House and crossing over to the other benches. He said he did so because of his own part's inability to compromise.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NICK BOLES, FORMER CONSERVATIVE MP: I accept I have failed. I have failed chiefly because my party refuses to compromise. I regret, therefore, to announce that I can no longer sit for this party.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NOBILO: So what happens now?
Theresa May will meet with the cabinet on Tuesday morning for a mammoth session to try to thrash out what their remaining options are. And it will not be easy, as the votes tonight did not help to clarify anything.
And Theresa May needs to find a way to reconcile her Leave ministers with her Remain ministers and find a strategy forward. All this needs to happen before she meets with other E.U. leaders next week -- Bianca Nobilo, CNN, London.
VAUSE: Joining me now from L.A. is CNN's European affairs commentator Dominic Thomas.
What is emerging among lawmakers here?
The customs union that was defeated, no tariffs on goods, no delays at ports, the U.K. would be bound by E.U. regulations and for the hardline Brexiteers that seems like a betrayal of the spirit of the referendum.
Mark Francois, Conservative and Brexit supporter, had this to say for his fellow Tory, was being interviewed by BBC Radio, he accused them of privately encouraging MPs to support the customs union.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARK FRANCOIS, TORY MP: What happened this evening was a number of members of the cabinet, led by Philip Hammond, utterly in cahoots with backbenchers across the house, attempted to stop us leaving the European Union.
What happened, if you look at the mathematics, is the Tory benches rallied to defeat it, the overwhelming number of votes against all the propositions were from Conservative MPs.
And if you're listening, Mr., Hammond, my fraternal message to you is, "Up yours!"
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: Theresa May has a marathon cabinet meeting coming up, just how toxic will that be?
DOMINIC THOMAS, CNN EUROPEAN AFFAIRS COMMENTATOR: John, to be a fly on the wall in that meeting would be quite something. Throughout this process, Theresa May has done everything she can to try to keep the Conservative Party together.
What's going to be fascinating about the meeting tomorrow is that she's going to have to make the choice to either side of with the pure withdrawal agreement, with whatever consequences come, or talk about that plus the possibility of reaching across in order to deliver a Brexit that is a negotiated Brexit.
Anything rather than a no deal. What we have been in her cabinet are not really individuals anymore, we have camps. You have the hardcore Brexiteers gang that are either going to take her down if the --
THOMAS: -- withdrawal agreement passes or they'd rather have a no deal and another set of cabinet members who were all wanting to avoid a no deal and are also highly concerned about the Brexiteer takeover in the cabinet.
So she will have to choose sides. It will be difficult for her to walk out of that meeting with a broad consensus over the way they're going to go and it is highly likely that members of the cabinet will step down at the end of this particular meeting.
But we will have some clarity from the prime minister about where she attends to go with this as the week goes on.
VAUSE: There's a tweet from a Labour MP, "Of course, the real reason Parliament cannot agree on good successful Brexit outcome is because there isn't one. Every single Brexit option requires tradeoffs that we're not prepared to accept."
With this non-agreement, the chances of an early election have increased. Some Conservatives say it'll be the least worst option at this stage.
Don't they remember that Theresa May tried this once before and it didn't go well?
THOMAS: She did, John. That was all the way back in just June 2017, so I think a lot has changed. In those indicative votes, yes, all four were defeated but there is a lot we can extrapolate from those numbers.
What we saw an early leadup to our discussion is that actually the Conservative Party voted against every option. The customs union, they supported with about 11 percent of all conservative MPs but they voted against all those deals, all the amendment and yet are reluctant to put themselves 100 percent behind Theresa May.
At this particular stage, it's clear that all these motions and the divisions in Parliament are there. MPs are sticking to their positions, the coverage we've been following the last few days on CNN of different regions of the U.K., Remainers are will Remainers. Leave campaigners are still Leave campaigners. At this particular juncture, one could argue that, given the fact that the second referendum is so incredibly divisive and controversial, going back to the people, when the parliamentarians have failed, might be a good way of enlisting them in this particular process.
It's possible that the general public will be more likely to accept the outcome of this process, having had a chance to weigh again through a democratic process called a general election.
VAUSE: You say they're sticking to their positions and for the most part that's true. But we are seeing, there's a movement towards a majority for one of the options and for the Labour opposition, that's good enough to have another round of voting.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEREMY CORBYN, LEADER, U.K. LABOUR PARTY: The margin of defeat for one of the options tonight was very narrow indeed. And the prime minister's deal has been rejected by very large majorities on three occasions.
If it is good enough for the prime minister to have three chances at her deal, then I suggest that possibly the House should have a chance to consider again the options that we have before us today.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: The deadline is a week away, they could keep holding nonbinding votes until the end of time.
THOMAS: So first of all, the issue is that the only deal agreed with the European Union is the withdrawal agreement. So when you start messing around with things, you are looking at an extension and all sorts of problems.
Jeremy Corbyn's number one goal is to get a general lection. So if Theresa May presents her deal and that fails, the likelihood of there being a call for a vote of no confidence is very high.
It looks, in fact -- and he knows this, I would argue -- that by pushing for some kind of softer Brexit, he's going to enrage the Brexiteers. It's likely that there is a scenario that if Jeremy Corbyn offers not so much the soft Brexit but a general election, he could push that through Parliament by getting the vote of the far right wing of the Conservative Party as a way to topple May if they're not able to come about it.
But you're absolutely right, there has been movement in that area and given the fact that Theresa May keeps returning with her particular motion, there is no reason why the Parliament, having voted twice on this and having moved in the right direction towards achieving some kind of consensus, might be willing to push this along. But the votes today were really along party lines. VAUSE: Brexit was getting so predictable and so repetitive, at least on Monday there was one surprise. They had naked protesters in Parliament. They were trying to draw attention to climate change. One MP tweeted this.
"Parliament just got a little bit more nuts."
I guess they were referring to the Brexit insanity over the years but these protesters made the point that, for the past two or three years, this government, this Parliament, these lawmakers have been unable to chew gum and walk at the same time. They are incapable of dealing with any other major issue.
THOMAS: You're absolutely right and there have been all sorts of reports. We've talked about them before, the question of poverty in the United Kingdom, the quality of education, of health care, all those major issues that --
THOMAS: -- a government is supposed to be working on and legislating have been pushed aside. And no matter what the Conservative Party says, no matter what Theresa May says to defend herself on that issue , the fact remains that, for the past three years, Brexit has been a enormous distraction to the United Kingdom, to their economy, and to their standing in the world. And people are tired of this process. It has, as many politicians have said, become a international embarrassment and yet one with serious consequences for the British people.
VAUSE: And that's next week, less than 10 days. Dominic, good to see you. Thank you.
THOMAS: Cheers, John.
VAUSE: The U.S. president has yet to decide if he will close the border with Mexico, that's according to Stephen Miller. The Trump aide says he is waiting to see what happens this week. CNN's Pamela Brown has more on what officials are calling an immigration crisis.
PAMELA BROWN, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): President Trump tonight not backing away from threats to close the U.S. border with Mexico as soon as this week, tweeting, "We have a major National Emergency at our Border. GET IT DONE NOW."
Administration officials warn that the ultimatum he launched last week...
TRUMP: We'll keep it closed for a long time. I'm not playing games.
BROWN (voice-over): -- is serious.
KELLYANNE CONWAY, TRUMP SENIOR ADVISER: It's certainly isn't a bluff. You can take the president seriously and here is why. You're giving those metrics but he's looking at is that 4,000 migrants apprehended in one day recently. We're on track this month for close to 100,000. We have never seen a surge like this.
BROWN (voice-over): Acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney telling ABC News that something dramatic would need to happen to change the president's mind.
MICK MULVANEY, ACTING WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: We need the people from the ports of entry to go out and patrol in the desert where we don't have any wall. We hate to say we told you so but we told you so. We need border security. And we're going to do the best we can with what we have.
BROWN (voice-over): The threats follow the highest month of undocumented migrant crossings in 11 years, according to Customs and Border Protection. Still, acting Secretary of Defense, Patrick Shanahan said, as of late Monday morning, the Pentagon had not yet been asked to support closing the boater.
PATRICK SHANAHAN, ACTING SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: It's a very dynamic and fluid situation. I'll be having conversations with secretary of state today and, most likely, Secretary Nielsen.
BROWN (voice-over): Aides also defending the president's decision to discontinue aid to Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador for not doing more to help --
BROWN (voice-over): -- stem the flow of migrants.
MULVANEY: We need the Northern Triangle countries to do more about not allowing their people into Mexico. They could help us. We need them to do that. If not, it makes very little sense for us to continue to send them aid.
BROWN (voice-over): President Trump also keeping up pressure on House Democrats to end their investigations into Russia meddling, now that special counsel Robert Mueller declined to recommend criminal charges against the president, tweeting, quote, "No matter what information is given to the crazed Democrats from the no-collusion Mueller report, it will never be good enough. Behind closed doors, the Dems are laughing."
MULVANEY: We really do think enough is enough. And it's time to move on to other things.
BROWN (voice-over): Acting White House chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, defending Trump after Democratic congressman Adam Schiff said Trump campaign associates' interactions with Russians were unethical.
MULVANEY: I think the voters are going to decide about the ethics and morality of the people they vote for on either side.
People liked Bill Clinton, even though they may not think he was that ethical. That's not the job of the House Intelligence Committee. It's not the job of the House Judiciary Committee. It's not the job of the House Oversight Committee. They're supposed to review the functioning of government. Voters make decisions about the candidates.
BROWN: A source familiar with the matter says the White House is considering a border zone of immigration efforts and it's something that's been entertained over the past year. More recently has been in consideration as the situation at the borders worsen in their view -- Pamela Brown, CNN, the White House.
VAUSE: And joining us from Charlottesville, Virginia is Larry Sabato, director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia. Larry, it's been awhile, good to see you.
LARRY SABATO, DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR POLITICS, UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA: Nice to see you, John.
VAUSE: OK, let's go back to Friday. I would like you to listen to part of what the president said when he announced an end to financial assistance to Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: They set up these caravans in many cases. They put their worst people in the caravan. They're not going to put their best in. They get rid of their problems. And they March up here and they're coming into that country, we're not letting them in our country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: Who's that "they"? Who's that "they" that's putting them in the caravans?
SABATO: They are the enemies of the United States and people who don't like Donald Trump. He's back to the caravan story again. And actually, there are certain words and phrases in what the president just said that are reverberations of what he said right after coming down the elevator when he announced his candidacy.
Nothing changes no matter what the policy is. And as a result, I think we see many times that people in the administration are setting policy in one direction and Trump comes at it from a completely different direction.
I've come to believe that Trump is not winning that fight that the policymakers are the ones winning the battles.
VAUSE: It's funny you mentioned that because -- you know, there this decision by the president, it did come as a surprise to pretty much everyone it seems. The Washington Post reports the announcement came just a day after Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen signed what the Department called a historic memorandum of cooperation on border security in Central America.
So, again, one of the consequences here, we have a president sort of making laws or policy if you like on the fly via a tweet. Well, the rest of the government is sort of paying in a different direction or just left in the dark.
SABATO: Yes and of course, this happened with North Korea as well. With new sanctions supposedly going into effect and Trump remanding them by tweet. So, this has also become a pattern.
The most charitable thing you could say is that Trump is using the old carrot-and-stick approach. He's always the stick and his policymakers within the administration are offering carrots.
I think what it says to foreign governments is that you can't pay too much attention to what Trump may say in public gatherings or what he may tweet. That he's expressing himself and some of his aides have said the very same thing.
These are his thoughts independent of what policy may be. It's unprecedented not just here but I think in any government.
VAUSE: We also have this -- you know, the economic consequences of closing down the border. Forbes has a pretty blunt warning. "Trump closing the Mexico border could throw the U.S. into a recession."
And apparently, the president knows this. CNN reports Trump has been briefed several times since last year about the economic consequences of shutting down U.S. ports of entry at the southern border but has continued to contemplate the idea of shutting down sections or the border in its entirety.
But then, when asked about the impact on the economy and the cost of all of this, Kevin Hassett who's a senior adviser to the president on economics, he told reporters on Monday, he's sure they're looking into it. "There's a lot of stuff that moves," Hassett told reporters. "And exactly how Customs and Border Patrol would deal with that would be something that we'll have to confer with them about, should we get to that."
It seems to time for conferring has long passed. And all this information have been considered ahead of time before any presidential decision?
SABATO: Well, you think so. I've joked that maybe Donald Trump doesn't like avocados, which would be one of the first things to disappear from the American table if this actually took effect.
But look, seriously this is very self-destructive on Trump's part. You can make a good argument that the only way he can be defeated for re-election is if the economy weakens seriously. And some are suggesting that this could be one of the factors if it goes forward. One of the factors that could weaken the U.S. economy and potentially throw us into recession by the election year of 2020.
VAUSE: The conservative commentator Ann Coulter who has been a big fan at Donald Trump and then, not so much a fan of Donald Trump when we need to get the funding for the wall on the border. And now she's a big fan again. She tweeted her support of this idea of closing the border down. "As the world's leading consumer of margaritas and guacamole, I nevertheless would fully support a shortage of avocados if it also meant a shortage of illegals," which is the drug return for people in the United States who don't have the proper documentation.
This is about a lot more than avocados so being in short supply. You've got the economic impact. But what about -- you know, relations between the United States and Mexico?
SABATO: Well, they haven't been particularly good since the Trump was elected, of course. They've gone back and forth, I think, the Mexican government has adjusted to Donald Trump's ways. But this can't help and it can help in Central America. And it probably doesn't help in a lot of other places around the world because it introduces instability into the international system.
VAUSE: Yes, that seems to be the case the last couple of years. Larry, thank you. Good to see you.
SABATO: Thank you, John.
VAUSE: Next up on CNN, Turkey's ruling party hasn't lost an election since coming to power but over the weekend the opposing party has made considerable gains in the local elections. it's being seen as a setback for president Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Also how this woman hopes to make history as Israel's first ultra- orthodox Jewish female MP and a member of the Knesset. We'll have a look at how she's doing.
VAUSE: Algeria's ailing president says he will step down by the end of the month. According to state-run media, which adds that April 28th is when his current term ends. He's been largely incapacitated by a stroke in 2013. The announcement follows mass protests demanding the president end his 20-year stay in office. Saturday, he appointed a caretaker government of 27 ministers.
A comedian who plays the president television just might get to the real president. Early results show Volodymyr Zelensky has the lead in the presidential election with 37 percent of the vote. He didn't win an outright majority of 50 percent which is he is headed for the April 21st runoff against current president Petro Poroshenko, who received just over 16 percent of the vote. Now to Turkey's, where Recep Tayyip Erdogan is facing a major
political setback after local elections. His AK Party lost control of the capital, Ankara, for the first time in 25 years. And he's also lost Turkey's third largest city, Izmir. CNN's Arwa Damon has more now on the impact of these results.
ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Turkey's president's party did not quite have the sweeping victory it was best known for. But the president himself is still touting how well his party and its coalition did across the country.
But still, there has been a very serious and deliberate message delivered by those who took to the polls, major cities, the capital, the country's political seat that lost to the opposition party's mayoral candidate, albeit by the slimmest of margins.
It really underscores many voters' grievances and key among those are grievances that have to do with the economy. The lira has been in a downward tumble, inflation is in double digits. Unemployment is at 10 percent, 20 percent among youth, not necessarily a new phenomenon but it is on the rise.
And Turkey's president, despite what he says, is not going to have to pay very close attention to his countrymen's grievances. This is something he himself did acknowledge, vowing that he and his party will do more to try to better the economy and other issues that the country is facing.
But this is still a potentially very devastating blow -- Arwa Damon, CNN, Istanbul.
VAUSE: To Israel now where Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud Party is trailing rival Benny Gantz and his Blue and White Party by four seats in the Knesset with only a week until the election. This is according to a poll by Channel 13. But Mr. Netanyahu appears to have an easier path, forming a coalition. He needs at least 61 seats.
VAUSE: Meanwhile Michal Zernowitski is hoping to make history as the Labor Party's first ultra-orthodox Jewish female MP. CNN's Melissa Bell shows us what she stands for and why she is gaining traction.
MELISSA BELL, CNN PARIS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): She's a new poster child for the party that dominated Israeli politics for decades and a first. Michal Zernowitski is the first ultra-orthodox Jewish woman ever to stand for Israel's Labor Party.
Here the ultra-orthodox are called Haredim, one who trembles in awe of God, a community that lives by the Torah and on the whole apart from the rest of Israeli society. Their views are conservative and Haredi women have only recently started to get involved in politics.
But there are parties on the right of the political spectrum that allow them to stand for office. Michal Zernowitski says that's not the only reason she chose Labor. As a liberal, she admits to being something of a revolutionary.
MICHAL ZERNOWITSKI, ISRAELI LABOR PARTY CANDIDATE: The Haredi community in Israel are very closed, like a ghetto, OK. And maybe like our grandfathers and grandmothers, they say when they came here, they say, OK, we are part of the country but we are here, the country is there, let's give us our autonomy.
They think that the younger people in Haredi community, they want to be more Israelis. They feel more part of the country.
BELL: Those among the Haredim resistant to change often make their presence felt. It seems like this one, a protest against a move to enlist more ultra-orthodox into the Army are a regular feature in Jerusalem. But things are changing.
DR. GILAD MALACH, ISRAEL DEMOCRACY INSTITUTE: There are more people in the modern community of the ultra-orthodox that as a groups says we are not
going to vote for ultra-orthodox parties. So we need to gather now in a new party.
BELL: The Labor Party hopes Michal Zernowitski will lead the way.
FLORENCE BRAUN, LABOR PARTY VOTER: I think somebody was trying to carry the tradition but make it change so that it's more favorable for the future of the young generation of orthodox Jews, as somebody who is very impressive.
BELL: Impressive enough to help Labor avoid the disappointment the polls predict on April the 9th, at 25 on their list, Michal Zernowitski is unlikely to become a member of the Knesset but she says change takes times. And she believes the young are the key to the future.
ZERNOWITSKI: We are normally (INAUDIBLE) in many issues and yes, it's evolution. And if you look at the Haredic parties, you see that they are not there -- they are very conservative, really in the political way.
And they want everything to be the same, OK. And we say, no, we want to change things.
BELL: Melissa Bell, CNN, Jerusalem.
VAUSE: Facebook is removing hundreds of what it calls fake accounts linked to two parties contesting India's election. The social media platform says, quote, "coordinated, inauthentic behavior" is behind the move. The innovation purge comes less than two weeks before hundreds of millions of Indians go to the polls to elect their next leader. Facebook has stepped up to prevent the spread false and malicious content.
Next up here on CNN NEWSROOM, the plastic waste which is polluting our oceans is also killing the marine life as well. What can be done to protect our waters and their homes.
VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody. You're watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause with the headlines this hour.
[00:30:57] British Prime Minister Theresa May will meet with her cabinet in the coming hours to discuss next steps on Brexit. Parliament voted down four more Brexit alternatives on Monday, including a customs agreements, a common market plan, and another deadline extension.
White House advisor Stephen Miller says the president has not yet decided if we will close the border with Mexico. This according to notes from a conference call. The administration says it's facing a surge of migrants on the border and is speeding up plans to deploy more officers. It's also cutting aid to three Central American countries.
Turkey's president facing a political setback after local elections. His A.K. Party lost control of the capital, Ankara, to the opposition party. Initial results show the opposition narrowly ahead in Istanbul. The election has been a test of Mr. Erdogan's popularity amid an economic downturn.
At least 50 firefighters have been treating multiple patients at a memorial for slain rapper Nipsey Hussle in Los Angeles. High crowds are seen scattering at Monday's event, but it's not yet clear what triggered that. Hussle was shot and killed Sunday near a clothing store he owned in L.A. Police are expected to update the public on -- about the investigation on Tuesday.
As our oceans become more like garbage dumps, especially for plastic, the consequences are becoming more deadly for sea life. A sperm whale washed up on the coast of Sardinia, and according to the environmental group SeaMe, she had 22 kilograms of plastic in her stomach. And the calf likely died before its mother, most likely from starvation.
Graham Forbes is a global project leader for Greenpeace USA. He joins us from Monterey in California.
So Graham, you know, the president of SeaMe told CNN that, in that 22 kilograms, 40 pounds, of plastic they found garbage bags, fishing nets, lines, tubes, a bag of washing machine liquid, which could still be identified with a brand and bar code, other objects that are no longer identifiable. Whales feed in deep water, really deep water, so this seems to tell us that there's a lot more trash and junk at the bottom of the sea than most of us had ever realized. GRAHAM FORBES, GLOBAL PROJECT LEADER, GREENPEACE USA: Absolutely. I mean, we dump the equivalent of a truckload of plastic waste into the oceans every minute of every single day all year long, and I think we're starting to see the results. And this isn't a crisis that just affects marine animals. But it's also increasingly a human health crisis.
VAUSE: And the cause of death here seems especially cruel, because when they looked at the whale, they found that two-thirds of her stomach had been filled with this plastic. And she just simply couldn't swallow enough food to survive.
FORBES: Yes, and you know, this is happening to millions of birds every year. We're hearing more and more stories like this. And fundamentally, we really just need to produce less plastic.
VAUSE: Yes. The big problem is that plastic as a substance just never fully breaks down. And so the E.U., among others, have introduced new regulations to reduce the amount of plastic waste. They tweeted out, "Cutlery, cotton buds, straws, stirrers. Thanks to our new rules, all products made of oxo-degradable plastics will be banned. 'A victory of everybody who came together to support'" -- yes, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
But you know, seriously, is that enough?
FORBES: Yes, I mean, we've got a long ways to go, right? I mean, you look at the consumer goods sector, a company like Nestle that produces and sells a billion products a day, and 99.9 percent of those are coming in single-use plastic packaging. And so we really need to rethink how we bring products to people. And so we're just starting to see some of those shifts, but fundamentally, we need to move away from single-use plastic as a delivery vehicle for food and other goods.
VAUSE: It just seems that there's so much low-hanging fruit out there, which could be done but has not -- these actions have not been taken. Like in the United States, for example, some states, you know, they charge you for a plastic shopping bag. But in many other states, they're still free; they still give them away. They're still one-use, and they're still going out into the environment.
FORBES: Absolutely, and I mean, in a lot of cases, it's like we aren't even trying right. Right? And I think the more we hear stories like this sort of heartbreaking story of this pregnant whale, we're going to -- we're going to see action, and it's starting, and it's just a matter of time before some of these big corporations and other players are going to really need to rethink kind of business as unusual.
VAUSE: One of the most popular "Star Trek" movies ever was "The Voyage Home," the fourth installment. The plot line is basically the earth is facing destruction from a probe that can only be answered by the songs of humpback whales, which in that time, the 23rd Century, were extinct.
[00:35:11] Here's a clip.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WILLIAM SHATNER, ACTOR: -- James T. Kirk. (INAUDIBLE) to call the probe.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Satellite, reserve power. Now.
SHATNER: Only the extinct species, humpback whale that can give the proper response to the probe. Do you concur with this opinion?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stabilize, emergency reserve.
SHATNER: If you need me. I'm going to attempt time travel. We are computing our trajectory at --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get him back! Get him back!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAUSE: That was 1986. Back then, humpback whales were actually facing a real threat from commercial whaling. They were on the endangered species list.
But we heard from federal authorities just three years ago, saying their numbers had recovered significantly. Nine out of the 14 species were taken off that list, mostly because of an international ban on whaling.
I wonder, is that sort of global consensus, that global cooperation possible now when it comes to dealing with this threat from plastic? Because it seems we have a much bigger challenge.
FORBES: Yes, I mean I think the awareness is increasing, but we really still have a long way to go. I mean, the U.N., environment, had a meeting just a couple of weeks ago on Africa. And unfortunately, the U.S. was sort of the biggest sort of blocker to making progress there.
But I think, you know, just as public awareness grows, I mean, plastic as it breaks down, it in our food, it's in our water, it's increasingly in our bodies. You know, we're going to need to see governments taking action among -- there's that incentive to do so. And, you know, I'm optimistic that people will step up and put the regulations in place that are really needed to protect us.
VAUSE: Because this is just the latest of a string of examples of whales washing out, you know, dead from consumption of plastic. It seems that there's been sort of maybe a tipping point. We weren't seeing this a year ago or a couple of years ago, and now it's becoming increasingly common.
Do you think that the oceans have just reached that point of toxicity that now we're seeing the real-world consequence of all that plastic in the oceans?
FORBES: Yes, I mean, absolutely. It's just becoming so much more visible, and this is sort of a slow-moving crisis.
But I agree with you. I mean, I think it has reached a tipping point. I mean, we're hearing it bumping up, sort of the agenda of corporate responsibility folks, of governments around the world. I mean, you saw the response from the Italian government. And this is something they take very seriously.
And so, yes, I think there is a reason for optimism, and at the same time, we are still producing so much plastic. When we think about companies like Nestle and Coca-Cola, we're talking about millions of metric tons of plastic every single year.
And so we have a long way to go, but I think with the growing public attention, we're going to start to see some change.
VAUSE: Always use refillable bottled water, always get it from the tap. Always use a shopping bag. There is so much which people can do, and it does not take much effort at all.
Graham, thank you.
FORBES: Cheers. Thank you.
VAUSE: Next up here on CNN NEWSROOM, when it comes to cursing in public, can anyone top the U.S. president?
[00:40:15] VAUSE: Burger King says it's planning to introduce -- get ready for this -- a veggie burger. The company is testing what it calls the Impossible Whopper, a plant-based patty that will look a lot like the real deal. Burger King is considering whatever you want to call this thing as a way to increase market share. Apparently, lower in calories, lower in cholesterol and fat, costs about a dollar more than a traditional Whopper.
The question is, do you want fries with that? And the answer is yes, because the veggie burger will taste like nothing.
OK. President Trump is swearing by a certain swear word while Beto O'Rourke is swearing off one. CNN's Jeanne Moos takes a look at politicians and profanity.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is the story of a cuss word added to the presidential campaign --
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: -- with bull- (EXPLETIVE DELETED).
MOOS: -- and a cuss word --
BETO O'ROURKE (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: So (EXPLETIVE DELETED) proud of you guys. MOOS: -- subtracted. Beto O'Rourke swears not to publicly swear using the "F" word, as President Trump introduces a swear word to describe investigations involving him.
TRUMP: They're trying to take you out with bull-(EXPLETIVE DELETED), OK? (EXPLETIVE DELETED)
MOOS: It got so much applause that the president decided to use it at his next rally, slightly embellished.
TRUMP: You're defrauding the public with ridiculous bull-(EXPLETIVE DELETED).
MOOS: It even spawned its own hashtag.
(on camera): Many of the president's supporters are going ape- (EXPLETIVE DELETED) over the president saying bull-(EXPLETIVE DELETED).
(voice-over): "Amen," tweeted actress Kristy Swanson.
"Inject the Trump directly into your veins" read another tweet.
But Beto O'Rourke's even stronger curse word --
O'ROURKE: And I was, like, yes, what the (EXPLETIVE DELETED). I mean, we're -- I'm running for --
MOOS: -- delivered with his 10-year-old daughter, Molly, beside him, caused a fellow Democrat to confront O'Rourke.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We already have one Vulgar-in-Chief. Do we need to replace him with another?
MOOS: In the past, it was Ted Cruz who used an ad to attack Beto for his language.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sharing his wit --
O'ROURKE: How (EXPLETIVE DELETED) up is that?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- his wisdom.
O'ROURKE: What the (EXPLETIVE DELETED) are these guys doing?
MOOS: Now it's a Democratic voter.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Come on, Beto, clean up your act. Honestly.
O'ROURKE: Yes. No, great point. And I don't intend to use the "F" word going forward.
MOOS: Ah, for the innocent old days when Joe Biden delivered the "F" bomb in a whisper.
JOE BIDEN (D), FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This is a big (EXPLETIVE DELETED) deal.
MOOS (on camera): And many of Beto's supporters think their guy dropping the "F" bomb is da bomb.
(voice-over): That it shows his passion. And disarming him makes us a nation of ninnies.
But these days, this is a nation in which even self-help books help themselves to expletives.
Jeanne Moos, CNN --
O'ROURKE: So (EXPLETIVE DELETED) proud of you guys.
TRUMP: Ridiculous bull-(EXPLETIVE DELETED).
MOOS: -- New York.
VAUSE: Thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm John Vause. Please stay with us. WORLD SPORTS starts after the break.