Return to Transcripts main page


Supreme Court Hearing Census Arguments Today; CNN Town Hall Recaps; Trump to Visit Buckingham Palace in June. Aired 10:30-11a ET

Aired April 23, 2019 - 10:30   ET


POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR, NEWSROOM: The facility in northeastern Pennsylvania is described as a high-security penitentiary with a minimum-security satellite camp. Manafort was sentenced earlier this year to seven and a half years in prison.

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN ANCHOR, NEWSROOM: Right now, the Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments on the 2020 census battle. This is key. The question in dispute: Should every member of the U.S. population be asked about their citizenship status? It has big political implications.

HARLOW: Huge, right? This is a critical decision. The census not only shapes congressional seats, districts, it also determines how billions of dollars in tax money are issues. Jessica Schneider is outside the Court with more.

So the oral arguments for this are going on right now. I know there have been some protests outside. For Americans hearing this for the first time this morning, break down exactly how important this and what happens after the oral arguments today.

JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, the oral arguments started at 10:00 a.m. this morning, Poppy and Jim. And this is important decision-wise and time-wise. That's because this court has essentially been given a 60-day window to decide this very important question, here.

Government attorneys say they need a decision from the Supreme Court, whether or not they can include this question asking for citizenship status. They need it answered by the end of June. That's because the printing presses are scheduled to start running on the census by July 1st in order to get those questionnaires out to every household.

Now, the Census Bureau has said that they have prepared two different versions of this census questionnaire, one with the citizenship question and one without. So a big question for the Supreme Court time-wise as well as decision-wise here because they are coming under lot of pressure politically.

Republicans are taking the side that the commerce secretary Wilbur Ross should be able to add this citizenship question. It would be the first time it would be added since 1950. They say it is well within Secretary Ross' right. In fact, the president weighed in on this on Twitter, back in -- on

April 1st, just a few weeks ago. The president saying this: "Can you believe that the Radical Left Democrats want to do our new and very important census report without the all-important citizenship question. Report would be meaningless."

TEXT: Donald J. Trump: "Can you believe that the Radical Left Democrats want to do our new and very important Census Report without the all-important Citizenship Question. Report would be meaningless and a waste of the $Billions (ridiculous) that it costs to put together!"

SCHNEIDER: So that's the Republican side. But of course on the other side, there's swift and severe pushback as well. That's because this has been percolating at the lower courts.

And in the lower courts, there was actually testimony from five former Census Bureau officials from both administrations, Republican and Democrat. They say that if this citizenship question is added, it will drive down participation to the tune, potentially, of 6.5 million less people that could be counted because they wouldn't answer these questionnaires.

TEXT: 2020 Census Legal Battle: DOJ wanted to add citizenship question to 2020 census; Admin claims the question is necessary to better comply with federal voting rights; Federal judge struck down the proposal; Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments today

SCHNEIDER: So to that effect, the ACLU has put out its own statement here, saying this. "The Constitution requires that everyone in America be counted. It's a basic principle of our democracy that representation be allocated equally to states based on their populations."

TEXT: "The Constitution requires that everyone in America be counted, it's a basic principle of our democracy that representation be allocated equally to states based on their populations. The addition of this question is an attack on that basic constitutional principle that will impact the entire country, and hurt the representation of minorities." Dale Ho, American Civil Liberties Union Lawyer

SCHNEIDER: And they ended the statement putting it this way. They said, "If they included the citizenship question, it would impact the entire question -- entire country and hurt the representation of minorities."

So, Jim and Poppy, that's really what it comes down to here. Critics are saying that this is really a veiled attempt by the administration to keep down the count of these non-citizen and Hispanic households -- guys.

SCIUTTO: Yes. The question is, if they see that question, will some folks feel that it opens them up to investigation even if they're here legally. Reduce representation, increase the public (ph) representation. Huge political implications. Jessica Schneider, thanks very much. Five 2020 Democratic hopefuls had different takes on everything from

impeachment to student load debt in the town halls here on CNN last night. One of them, Mayor Pete Buttigieg -- you might have heard of him -- he's really rising rapidly in the polls. But critics say he is short on detailed policy proposals. Hear his answer to that criticism, next.


[10:38:20] HARLOW: Welcome back. South Bend, Indiana mayor, Pete Buttigieg, quickly rising in the polls, going from just single digits about a month ago to right up there on the heels of former Vice President Joe Biden. Look at that, 15 percent, Jim, for Buttigieg.

SCIUTTO: Pretty remarkable rise in such a short period of time. You've got to call him a credible candidate. But last night --


SCIUTTO: -- in his CNN town hall with our colleague Anderson Cooper, asked, where are the details on his proposals, here was his answer.


MAYOR PETE BUTTIGEG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We'll continue to roll out specific policy proposals too. But I also think it's important that we not drown people in minutiae before we've vindicated the values that animate our policies.

Because as Democrats, this is a habit that we have. We go right to the policy proposals. And we expect people to be able to figure out what our values must be from that.


SCIUTTO: Joining us now is CNN's senior political commentator John Kasich, former GOP governor of Iowa -- Ohio, rather, and 2016 presidential candidate.

Governor, always good to have you on. You've been in a race or two. Do voters at this stage want chapter and verse on policy? Or do they really more want to focus on getting a sense of who the candidate is?

JOHN KASICH, FORMER OHIO GOVERNOR AND CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Jim, when I was in the race, I find a little -- along the way, that voters wanted to know who you are and do you care about them and do you understand them, more than they care about this particular policy proposal or not.

I think the mayor has risen on the basis of the fact that he's said some things that people have found very interesting and real. And then you take a look at Elizabeth Warren. Every day, there's another complicated proposal. Who's rising?

[10:40:01] So I think -- I think the mayor's right. And by the way, it's not up to the media to try to tell him when to -- when to lay out his policy proposals. The guy's running for president.

The danger here, Jim, for all these candidates, is that they start trending way to the left because that's where it seems like the energy is. But that's not where the bulk of the Democratic Party is. And the people that can resist that and connect are the ones that I think are going to be successful. And of course the big dog coming in, Joe Biden, is going to shake everything.

HARLOW: Yes. We're watching for that. But, you know, you make a really good point, Governor Kasich. Because Buttigieg represents, you know, not a super- you know, left part of Indiana. And he noted, look, you have 80 percent -- "I won with 80 percent of the vote in the last election." He won some conservatives over.

I'm interested in -- because we know how you feel about the president. So if this were a race between President Trump and, you know, Mayor Pete Buttigieg at the top of the ticket, would you vote for Buttigieg over Trump? And I ask you that in the broader context --


HARLOW: -- of --

KASICH: That's --

HARLOW: -- do you think he can get Republican votes?

KASICH: Come on, that's just so theoretical. Look --

HARLOW: OK, OK. But do you think --

KASICH: -- we have a long way to go.

HARLOW: -- he can get those conservative votes?

KASICH: I'm not (ph) going (ph) to (ph) -- look, I'm -- what I'm saying to you is, I think that the country is center-right, center- left. The poll yesterday indicated that Donald Trump's approval's, like, at 37 percent.

HARLOW: Right.

KASICH: So let's give him 40 percent. So 60 percent of the country doesn't like what he's doing, or doesn't like him. But that's not compared to somebody else. So the question is, who's going to come across with the stature? Who's going to come across with ideas that strike in the center-right and the center-left? And that's really the issue.

So if you're -- if you're going off into Medicare for all -- we just read that Social Security is not going to have enough money to pay its bills in 2020. I mean, if you're -- if you're in free this and wealth taxes and all that other stuff, I don't think it's going to sell.

You've got to remember, my father was a Democrat. I grew up in a Democratic town. I didn't meet Republicans until I went to college. They are not hard-left. They maybe (ph) appear to be that way right now, in these early discussions, but that's not where they really live.

SCIUTTO: I wonder, though. Let me just play devil's advocate here for a bit. Because --


SCIUTTO: -- if we were talking about 2016 and the Republican field in 2016 today, say, a year out, you know, in 2015, we say -- I mean, look at the positions that Donald Trump staked out that were way out side there (ph), way to the right of what folks thought was the driving force of the Republican Party. And yet he scored a big upset and has dragged the party with him.

I just wonder if we underestimate the ability of a candidate who just strikes lightning, right --

KASICH: Excellent --

SCIUTTO: -- in some sort of way.

KASICH: -- question, Jim. Great question. Here's the problem. The Republicans had winner-take-all. So Donald Trump could win 30 percent of the vote and win all the delegates, OK?


HARLOW: Right.

KASICH: Democrats don't have that. So here you have a situation where if you were to take myself or Rubio or Chris Christie or some of these people -- Jeb Bush -- we were the vast majority of the party. There were too many of us in the race.

And what I found out as time went on, is I started talking less about issues and more about the issues that people deal with in their lives. And that's why I rose. I was the last one to get out of the race. I just didn't have the money. The money was too divided. So it's a different formula now for Democrats than it was for the Republicans in 2016.

The key -- here's the thing. Klobuchar's trending in the middle. Mayor Pete, in the middle. Beto, we haven't heard enough from. Probably in the middle. Joe Biden --


KASICH: -- he's going to have great appeal. And you know his appeal is going to be is to those blue collar people. Think about Ed Rendell, the governor of Pennsylvania, two-term. I mean, that's as blue collar as you can get. And he's a big Biden guy. The unions are going to come out for him. So we'll see how that goes over time because he's got to be out there and perform.

HARLOW: So, quickly before you go, Governor. Yesterday -- KASICH: Yes.

HARLOW: -- Earth Day. Big deal, given what this globe is facing. You tweeted, "We need to all do what we can to preserve the environment for future generations."

On the left, you've got the Green New Deal. But what should the Republican counterproposal be to that? And do you think that Republicans right now are, frankly, talking enough about specifics? If they don't like the Green New Deal, what's their counter?

KASICH: No, I think they're out to lunch. I think they're out to lunch on this right now. Although George Shultz, he's a father, an icon of the Republican Party, was for a carbon tax.

HARLOW: Right.

KASICH: No, I think there are very good answers to move quickly. Carbon tax or cap-and-trade, investment in renewables. There's a ton of things that Republicans should be for because our growing interest in preserving this environment is real. And you can't put your head in the sand and be a climate denier even if you only want to win a Republican primary. That is a loser.

People care about the environment. We should be -- we should take care of our environment and there are reasonable ways to do it.


HARLOW: Out to lunch.


[10:45:02] HARLOW: That says a lot. All right. Governor Kasich --

KASICH: Health care. The environment. Income inequality. All these things are going to be front and center --


KASICH: -- not impeachment, not Medicare for all. But health care, stuff like that. That's where we're heading on this, in my opinion. And Democrats --


SCIUTTO: Someone should hire you, Governor. Someone should hire you.

KASICH: Well --

SCIUTTO: Put a shingle out.

HARLOW: Maybe you're going to run.

KASICH: I already (ph) did. No, CNN did.


KASICH: And by the way, you know, I was really encouraged. There was -- hey, listen, there was a poll among college students that came out yesterday. And you have to check the rankings. I looked at it, I thought, "I'm not even running" and my numbers were pretty good.

HARLOW: Well, not yet.

KASICH: I don't know what that means, but it's fun.

HARLOW: Not yet -- not yet, Governor Kasich.


SCIUTTO: What's our next question, Poppy? I forget. What was our next question, the governor, there was a question.

HARLOW: I forget. What was that question? Oh, are you going to run? Are you going to run?

SCIUTTO: It'll come -- it'll come to mind. Yes.

KASICH: I have no idea what -- you know, right not, there's no path. But you don't know about tomorrow, you know? That --

HARLOW: All right.

KASICH: -- the great thing about politics, it's like sports. You cannot predict the next game.

HARLOW: Hey, there you go.

KASICH: You guys are great. Thanks for having me on.

HARLOW: All right. Come back, come back. Governor Kasich, we appreciate it.

KASICH: I will. Thank you.

HARLOW: All right. All right. So President Trump, heading back to London. This time, he will receive all the bells and whistles of an official state visit. What kind of welcome will he get, though, from the British public?


[10:50:41] SCIUTTO: Well, this just in to CNN as well. Attorneys for two Nigerian brothers who were involved in the Jussie Smollett case are set to hold a press conference just moments from now, to announce a federal lawsuit.

Police originally questioned the men after Smollett claimed that he was beaten by two suspects who, you'll remember, he claimed hurled racist and homophobic slurs at him in a late-night attack. The brothers were later released without being charged.

We're going to bring you that news conference if and when it happens. We'll bring it to you live.

Other news this morning, Buckingham Palace announcing President Trump will make his first state visit to the U.K. in June. He'll get to meet the queen -- Poppy.

HARLOW: Yes, he will. There is some history here, though. You may recall, last year, thousands of people in London took to the streets in protest of the president's visit. That wasn't (ph) an official state visit like this one will be.

And Brexit's still totally up in the air. What could the impact of this trip be? Let's go to our friend and colleague Max Foster in London with more.

What are people saying?

MAX FOSTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, we're wondering whether there'll be more protests or less protests. Certainly there will be more opportunity for protest because the last visit was meant to be low- key, a working visit. He took a chopper between the locations.

This time, he'll be on the ground, he'll be exposed to this whole very exposed area around Buckingham Palace. So it'll look a lot like President Obama's last visit, a formal welcome up the road at Horse Guards, then a banquet here at Buckingham Palace.

He won't be able to stay over, though, unfortunately. Because there's refurbishment going on at the moment. The whole front of the palace is actually closed at the moment.

But the big issue, of course, is Brexit. You may remember, Poppy and Jim, what happened last time before he flew in. He did an interview for "The Sun" newspaper, telling "The Sun" that he told May how to do Brexit, but "she can't listen to me. And Boris Johnson would make a great prime minister." Causing all sorts of problems.

What Theresa May would love to do, though -- because even since then, it's got a lot more chaotic around Brexit -- is sign some sort of trade deal with the United States. It would help her and I think, actually, a lot of Brits would really welcome something positive to come out of this process. It would make Brexit, perhaps, more palatable if it happens.

SCIUTTO: Max Foster, there. It's going to be an interesting moment. No question. We'll see how big the protests are. We'll certainly bring that to you when it happens.

[10:53:00] Two years after the murders of two girls in Indiana, new details that could help lead to their killer. We're going to have those details right after this.


HARLOW: All right. Welcome back. New clues in a murder mystery that has stumped investigators for two years. SCIUTTO: Yes. Indiana state police are hoping that this sketch you

see here, and never-before-seen cell phone video, will lead them to the suspect who they believe killed two teenage girls -- those are them right there -- while they were hiking in the woods. HLN's Susan Hendricks joins us now.

So, Susan, investigators say -- and this is kind of amazing -- the suspect has been hiding in plain sight. How is that?

SUSAN HENDRICKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Before we got here, we knew that the investigation, Jim, was headed into a new direction. And, wow, what a direction it took. I mean, this new sketch looks nothing like the old sketch that we had before.

TEXT: Unsolved Murders of Teen Girls in Indiana: New information from investigators: Suspect anywhere between ages of 18 and 40; He might look younger than his true age; He lives or works in Delphi, Indiana or frequently visits area; Suspect likely "hiding in plain sight"

HENDRICKS: And the superintendent, Doug Carter, he took this personally. It was almost as though in that presser, he was addressing the new suspect. Listen to him.


DOUGLAS CARTER, SUPERINTENDENT, INDIANA STATE POLICE: Directly to the killer who may be in this room. We believe you are hiding in plain sight.


HENDRICKS: So, Poppy and Jim, that was the superintendent, Doug Carter. He also went on to say this. "We have a witness. You made mistakes. We are coming for you and there is no place for a heartless coward like you to hide."

And also at this presser, some new sound was released. We did have sound of the suspect on the bridge saying, "Down the hill, down the hill." And they added this, "Guys, down the hill," to this sound, almost making it appear as though the person may have known these two girls or they come off as younger. And the age range was also lowered as well, from 18 to 40.

And they said, look, we know this seems like a large span. But he may be older and appear younger. But, wow, what a turn in this case. And they say, "We are coming for you" -- Poppy and Jim.

SCIUTTO: Goodness.

HARLOW: OK. Wow. Susan, please keep us posted as well. Just to hear them say, "hiding in plain sight, maybe in this room," is stunning.


HARLOW: We appreciate the reporting and that family deserves answers. Those families.

Thank you, everyone, for joining us today. We'll see you back here tomorrow morning. I'm Poppy Harlow.

SCIUTTO: And I'm Jim Sciutto. "AT THIS HOUR" with Erica Hill filling in today, will start right now.

ERICA HILL, CNN HOST: Hello, I'm Erica Hill, in for Kate Bolduan. Red lines, battle lines and a congressional deadline. In just a few hours, time runs out for the White House to hand over the president's tax returns. And as of now, there is no hint the administration is ready to comply.