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Missing Yoga Instructor Rescued in Hawaii after 2 Weeks; Soon Bernie Sanders to Hold Campaign Rally in Home State Amid Sliding Poll Numbers; Polls: Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris on the Rise; Tornadoes Heavy Rains Flam Oklahoma Causing Widespread Damage; Over 40 Million Under Severe Weather Threats This Weekend; Human Traffic Jam on Mount Everest Creates Legal Conditions for Climbers; State Rep. Kyle Mullica (D-CO) Discusses Measles Outbreak, Vaccines, Death Threats; Trump Arrives for Japan State Visit with Abe Amid Trade Tensions; Trump Arrives in Japan Amid Tensions with China, North Korea. Aired 1-2p ET
Aired May 25, 2019 - 13:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[13:00:12] MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, there. Thanks for joining me. I'm Martin Savidge, in for Frederica Whitfield.
After vanishing in the woods in Hawaii for more than two weeks, a yoga instructor has been found alive. Surviving on berries and water, 35- year-old Amanda Eller was miraculously spotted by a rescue team and airlifted to safety out of a Maui forest reserve.
CNN's Jessica Dean has more on this incredible story and survival.
JESSICA DEAN, CNN (voice-over): Missing more than two weeks, Amanda Eller is found alive in Maui, Hawaii. Her rescue announced by this Facebook page set up by family and friends.
"Urgent update: Amanda has been found. She got lost and was stuck and slightly injured in the Makawao Forest, between two waterfalls, in deep ravine in a creek bed."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can cry now. It's awesome. That's like the best --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You got a good Memorial Day now.
DEAN: A photo on the page showed Eller just before the air evacuation surrounded by members of a search team. She appeared to be only slightly injured. And this picture of the ravine where she was apparently found.
JULIA ELLER, MOTHER OF AMANDA ELLER: I was crying tears of joy.
DEAN: Her mother, Julia Eller, told affiliate, KHON, Amanda used water sources and ate the berries she found, strawberries, guava and other items, to sustain her.
ELLER: I never gave up hope for a minute. Even though at times I would have those moments of despair, I stayed strong for her because I knew we would find her if we just stayed with the program, stayed persistent.
DEAN: Authorities say Eller, a 35-year-old yoga instructor, disappeared after going on a hike May 8th. Her car was found with her cellphone inside at a forest reserve parking lot. A last image of her was captured on surveillance video buying a Mother's Day gift the day before she was reported missing.
A $50,000 reward was being offered for information regarding her disappearance or possible abduction.
But now, there's an ending that some are calling miraculous.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Unbelievable. If you believe in prayer, folks, thank your Lord because this is an answer.
DEAN: Jessica Dean, CNN, Atlanta.
SAVIDGE: And what a wonderful, happy ending.
Joining me now is one of the rescuers who helped locate Amanda and get her to safety, Javier Cantellops.
And good morning to you where you are. I know it's very early in the day. Thanks very much for joining us.
Let me ask you first, do you have information on how Amanda is doing now?
JAVIER CANTELLOPS, LOCAL RESCUER OF AMANDER ELLER: Actually I don't. I literally just woke up, so I do not know. (INAUDIBLE)
SAVIDGE: Well, I know by looking at the photograph there were injuries that looked to her feet or legs there. Is that really severe or is that something on the lighter side?
CANTELLOPS: Well, I mean I wouldn't call it on the lighter side. She was without her shoes for over a week. It's rough terrain. The vegetation there's really, really dense. There's a lot of like sticky bushes but she had a lot of infection, but she's done pretty well.
SAVIDGE: So describe for us that moment when you first spotted her after all of this time, what was that like and how did it happen?
CANTELLOPS: Man, it was nothing short of elation. We were -- we were in a really far east area, way past our original search area had been. That my initial theory, she kept on walking in the woods that's why we wouldn't found her.
And we're going up this gulch in the helicopter, an open area, and we were looking down and the waterfall was coming and the river is coming, and the waterfall is coming and the river is coming. And we're all looking down and, like a movie, we all looked down pretty much at the same time and go look at that hiker. Oh, my god, and out of the woodwork you see Amanda waving her arms to us and we just lost it. I was ready to jump out of it.
SAVIDGE: Spotting her is one thing, though. There's still the rescue has had to be pulled off and that couldn't be easy, given the conditions and the terrain.
CANTELLOPS: Yes, there certainly was. We actually had to do two different stops. We realized we couldn't make it to the other side of the ravine, so we had to load up and the helicopter actually had to drop us off and take off. He was running low and fuel and then we had to literally bushwhack through some extremely thick vegetation just to get to the ravine's edge and go completely commando hike all the way down to her through the brush.
And seeing her for the first time in a long time was unbelievable.
[13:05:21] SAVIDGE: What was her reaction to all of you?
CANTELLOPS: She was like, I've been searching for you guys. We had been passing her. She said she'd heard helicopters flying by her, and unfortunately, you know, that vegetation is so thick, it's a miracle we saw her. I got footage of just some of our flight and you look down and you're like it's going to take a miracle.
SAVIDGE: Did you ever give up hope, in other words -- this was a recovery mission you were on, it was not so much a rescue mission.
CANTELLOPS: You know, I'm a hypermotivated guy. I'm a super positive person here in Hawaii. Although I let speculation go in my head and what could have happened, where could she be, I refused to believe she was gone or she got abducted. Nothing else pointed that way. The only reason we haven't found her is because she's still walking. And we just got to push out and we're going to find her.
SAVIDGE: And lastly, many people don't think of Hawaii as a place you get lost, and I guess that's the lesson here. Maui is a place you can get lost. There's actually difficult terrain to deal with, right?
CANTELLOPS: Absolutely. Maui is absolutely beautiful, and we have a really safe state here. But when it comes to the forest and hiking trails we have, all those are beautiful and take you through incredible landscape, pools. You know, this is really jungalist terrain. You go down the trail and walking down you can see the trail.
SAVIDGE: Absolutely. So what's your advice? What advice do you give?
CANTELLOPS: So the advice I give to anybody not just here in Hawaii, don't just go hiking into the woods by yourself. Please carry your cellphone. If she'd had a cellphone, we would have been able to track her. Don't take off. And let somebody know where you're at and how long you plan on being out there.
SAVIDGE: Javier Cantellops, thank you so much. Not only just to your efforts but the efforts of your entire team who never gave up and brought us such a wonderfully positive story today. Thank you.
CANTELLOPS: Thank you so much.
SAVIDGE: Very positive.
CANTELLOPS: Thank you so much for having me. And this was a huge team effort down here in Hawaii.
SAVIDGE: Yes, it was.
CANTELLOPS: So we thank you for your time. And, aloha, guys.
SAVIDGE: Aloha. Congratulations.
CANTELLOPS: Thank you guys.
SAVIDGE: Still ahead, Senator Sanders is about to kick off his first home state rally as he tries to bounce back from sliding poll numbers. What is the strategy to take back the number-one spot? We'll be live to find out.
[13:11:49] SAVIDGE: Just about an hour from now, Democratic presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders, will take the stage in his home state of Vermont to kick off the long weekend. It's still early but, for most of the race so far, Sanders has held a solid second behind former Vice President Joe Biden.
But this latest Monmouth poll could show trouble for the Senator. He went from 20 percent down to 15 percent without the other candidates cracking the double digits.
It's a good time to check in with Ryan Nobles at the rally site.
I'm wondering what we're expecting to hear from the Senator today, Ryan. Good to see you.
RYAN NOBLES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good to see you, Martin.
This is being dubbed as a homecoming rally for Bernie Sanders. Of course, Vermont the state where he started his political career. It took him 10 years before he won his first election here.
They are really doing it up big here. Free Ben and Jerry's ice-cream, among other things, and special Montpelier swag they're selling today. These T-shirts will run 35 bucks, but they have the statehouse behind it with a Bernie logo as people in Vermont encourage to get behind the Senator's campaign.
Of course, Vermont is a big part of the political story for Bernie Sanders. This is where he initially ran on a third-party line, attempting to shake-up the system here. But eventually elected the mayor of Burlington and he went onto become a member of Congress and then a United States Senator.
And all along the way he's been kind of a unique politician. He railed against American foreign policy as the mayor of Burlington. He called for universal health care.
And the building blocks of that political career began here and they continue now into his campaign for president.
And while at a period of time some of Sanders positions could have been considered to be radical. At one point he called for incomplete legalization of all drugs, including heroin. He has been very consistent on things like Medicare-for-All, about his fight to balance things in terms of economic inequality.
That's the message here today, Martin. This is Bernie selling himself to all of-Americans as the type of politician who's been successful here in Vermont and can bring that bit of Vermont sensibility to the rest of the country.
We should point out, Martin, Vermont not necessarily like the rest of the country. It is certainly more white, certainly more affluent than many other parts of the Democratic primary. So Sanders argues that his political message works for people across the board and that's one of the reasons he believes he should be the next Democratic nominee for president -- Martin?
SAVIDGE: That's one the very issues we're debating today.
All right, Ryan Nobles, thank you so much. Great color there in explaining all that. We appreciate it.
With me now to discuss, the director for the Center of Politics at the University of Virginia, Larry Sabato, and cofounding and managing editor of "The Beat D.C.," Tiffany Cross.
Larry, let me start with you.
What message do voters want to hear? It almost seems like it's a moment of a reset for the Bernie Sanders campaign. You go home, it's a long weekend, it's a significant weekend to kick off the summer, and there he is. So what is the message those who support him want to hear?
[13:14:59] LARRY SABATO, DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR POLITICS, UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA: The message is pretty much the message they heard in 2016. Bernie Sanders is consistent. You may not like what he says, but he is very consistent. To your right, this is reset or relaunch. Nothing wrong with that.
Several other candidates have also done it. Still eight months from the voting. So there's plenty of time.
And Sanders has an advantage that most of the others don't. He has steady source of money. It's not going to go away. And he got over 13 million votes four years ago. That's critical constituency for the Democratic Party. And if he's not the nominee, the eventual nominee will have to have those votes to vote in.
SAVIDGE: Tiffany, the Monmouth poll, which I referenced there, and how it could show possibly some trouble for Sanders. His support slipping somewhat while Senator Kamala Harris and Senator Elizabeth Warren seem to be on the rise, hitting double digits. Do you think the Sanders campaigns is worried when they look at that?
TIFFANY CROSS, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Martin, I know these polls are great fodder for us to talk about, but you have to consider how polling works and who's responding to these polls. Most people aren't answering landline phones, and you look at 2018. And there were a lot of younger people, lot of first-time voters engaged in the political process who aren't a part of these polls. I think it's early. And I don't put a lot of credence into what some of these polls show.
And I think it's a crowded field. There are 23 candidates in the race, so there's going to be weeks where we're up and down. You know as well as I do and that something could happen tomorrow and the polls are basically obliterated.
I think the voters want to hear, how will you directly impact my life tomorrow, how will you make my life better tomorrow.
We look at the current chaos and state of affairs in politics. I think voters of both parties are very eager and interested to hear from all 23 candidates.
And Bernie typically gets a lot of press time, fair enough. But you do have candidates like Julian Castro. He's introduced a comprehensive immigration reform plan. He introduced an education plan. Andrew Yang has over 100 detailed policy proposals on his site. Kamala Harris just introduced the Black Maternity Mortality Bill in Congress.
So I think we have a long way to go. I don't put that much credence to what the polls say at this early stage.
SAVIDGE: Larry, to Tiffany's point, there are new ideas coming up from different candidates and does Bernie need to come up with something himself in order to regain the spotlight?
SABATO: He may need to repackage or reframe his themes. What worked against Hillary Clinton in 2016 won't necessarily work against Joe Biden, not to mention the other 21, 22 candidates. So it's a different situation for Sanders.
I will point, as Tiffany was suggesting, over the course of 2016, Bernie often did better than the polls projected he would do in an individual state. Partly because a lot of his vote was younger.
So it's awfully early to be saying Bernie is dropping and he will be one of the ones eliminated. We'll see about those debates starting around the end of June. You're going to have 20 people on the stage over two nights and you can be sure some of those candidates are not going to survive the debates. They're probably not going to get a word in word-wise.
SAVIDGE: I think that's what people are looking for next.
Let me ask you this, Tiffany. Senator Sanders announced a fundraiser in San Francisco next week. This is the kind of high-dollar event that he criticized in the past Hillary Clinton for doing. His campaign says, quote, "It's going to be hard to catch up to Joe Biden's fundraising. He is raising huge funds of money at large fundraising events all across the country."
But this seems to be counter to the image we had of Bernie Sanders. So is he being kinds of two-faced here of the need for money?
CROSS: I think Senator Sanders's walks a fine line with some of his economic policies and some of the systems he's a champion for. But, look, I think, in politics, this is something that's, again, very inside the belt talk. I think when you get out of D.C., the average voter doesn't care. We just want to hear how the policies impact people.
When you at some of these big-dollar events that happen, for those of us who know how it works, big dollars, that like I'm checking the box, I contributed to Bernie's campaign. A $5-dollar contribution, that's a vote.
And even now, fundraising is early. A lot of people are holding onto those dollars until after the first debate state. You do have people who have got strong ties in the tech sector and San Francisco, particularly.
Kamala Harris, her brother-in-law is general counsel for Uber. He's going to be passing funds coming out of Silicon Valley. She's good friends with Reggie Hudland (ph), a big Hollywood producer. He's going to host fundraisers for her. You've got Julian Castro, who's tight when the Latino Victory Team and they're doing a lot of fundraising.
[13:20:18] SAVIDGE: Yes.
CROSS: Even the fundraising argument is super early for us to be having. But, look, it's something to look at and we've got a long way to think about it.
SAVIDGE: All right, Tiffany Cross and Larry Sabato, we appreciate it greatly. Thanks very much.
CROSS: Thanks, Martin.
SAVIDGE: Still ahead, a desperate search after severe rain and flooding in the Midwest sweeps away a 4-year-old boy playing in a creek. This as more rain, tornados and hail is on the way. That'll be next.
SAVIDGE: Rescuers are racing to find a missing 4-year-old in Indiana after flood waters swept him away on Thursday. Authorities say Owen jones was playing with older friends in a creek when a fast-moving current swept him down stream. Recent rains have made the current so strong, it's not safe to send in divers, so rescuers are using boats with sonar and drones instead.
Meanwhile, officials say two people have died in Oklahoma after severe weather this week. And there's no relief in sight but more bad weather expected this weekend. More than 40 million are still under a severe weather threat.
CNN national correspondent, Omar Jimenez, is in the middle of the flood.
[13:25:09] OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is the reality for many people here in Tulsa, Oklahoma. And it's become a reality, they've grown all too familiar with over the course of this week.
Just two day ago, our crews were able to drive through this place. No problem with no water. As you can see, it has changed dramatically over the course of just a few days.
Statewide, all 77 counties under a state of emergency at this point. And many people having to come to grips with the harsh realities of this flooding.
(voice-over): All Kent Bruce could do was stare, knee-deep in water, his home flooded.
KENT BRUCE, FLOODING VICTIM: I'm knew that was here so -- I'm just speechless right now.
JIMENEZ: It's a familiar feeling for all too many across the plains and Midwest. Many places still recovering on the tail end of what's been a week that's brought deadly tornados, heavy rain and life-saving water rescues.
LT. COL. ADAM WEECE, MILITARY CHIEF OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS, U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEEERS: It's important for us to maintain this series of dams because the water continues to flow in.
JIMENEZ: Lieutenant Colonel Adam Weece is with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Over the course of days, they've slowly had to increase the amount of water they release from the Tulsa area Keystone Dam to near historic levels just to keep up with the high waters.
WEECE: Keystone Dam, which has been the focus point for us most of the time, is -- has a release rate of approximately 250,000 cubic feet per second. If you do the math, that equates to possibly 1,000 school buses per second going through the dam.
JIMENEZ: Across the Tulsa area, more than 1,000 residents have been impacted by flooding so far.
KAREN KEITH, TULSA COUNTY COMMISSIONER: Please, please, pay attention because the weather can be fickle, as can the river. And obviously, we're watching the levies very closely.
JIMENEZ: It's advice that applies across the state. The governor declared a state of emergency for all 77 counties in Oklahoma.
Just north of Oklahoma City, these homes are barely hanging on after flooding eroded the ground beneath them.
And in Tulsa, this riverside neighborhood is very much a part of the river.
ANA HALL (ph), TULSA RESIDENT: I walked to the end of the street and everything was under water and I wasn't go wading through because I didn't know what I might step on.
JIMENEZ: The risks are still very real.
WEECE: Even though the rain has stopped here, water flowing north of us, flowing upstream is continuing to gather and continuing to funnel towards the areas here.
JIMENEZ: Which means more people could be affected and more homes like Bruce's.
(on camera): Where do you go from here?
BRUCE: Probably to higher ground.
JIMENEZ: As you can see, the sun is out, but as the U.S. Corps of Engineers put it, the sunlight can be deceptive since many people assume it has to rain for there to be flooding. As they put it, there are many tributaries and rivers that feed into the Arkansas River, behind me here, just upstream of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Whatever factors or rain may be happening north of the city creates a literal ripple effect that continues to play out here in Tulsa.
Omar Jimenez, CNN, Tulsa, Oklahoma.
SAVIDGE: There are nearly 400 river gauges that are now above flood stage, and the system is not just causing flood waters to rise but also triggering tornados and hail. In fact, forecasters say there have been now more tornados reported for the ninth straight day.
CNN Meteorologist Allison Chinchar is tracking the latest for us -- Allison? ALLISON CHINCHAR, AMS METEOROLOGIST: That number may end upcoming up
in the next couple of days as well more severe weather expected. But in the last 24 hours, we've had of 100 total storms reports and 11 of them have been reported tornados. Again, the key is that makes it the 9th day in a row we've had reported tornadoes come in.
So The question becomes, what does that mean for the month of May. Typically, in the month of May, you would average only 268 tornados. Keep in mind, May is the peak month for this. But so far, this May, we've had a preliminary number of 327. So we are already above average. Keep in mind, we still have more severe weather expected before we finish out the rest of this month, today included.
The threats extend from Texas all the way over to Pennsylvania and portions of Upstate New York. The threats themselves remain the same. We're talking damaging winds, the potential for large hail and, yes, even a few tornados could be embedded within some of those storms. And some could potentially be strong tornadoes.
We also have heavy rain that will be coming back into the mix for a lot of areas that simply don't need to see it. It's already raining across portions of the Midwest. That will shift over to the Great Lakes. But we have that other section of rain that will develop later this afternoon and in the evening hours for places like Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.
One thing to note, too, Martin, again, it's not just today. We also have a threat for severe weather on Sunday as well as Monday.
SAVIDGE: Wow, there's still several days left in this month so the records could go higher.
Allison, thanks very much.
[13:30:00] Still ahead, three more climbers have died on Mount Everest. That brings the death toll to nine across the 2019 climbing season. We'll talk about why this year has been so deadly.
SAVIDGE: Just into CNN, another death on Mount Everest today making it at least nine people dying this month on the world's tallest mountain. One possible cause, overcrowding on the narrow route to the summit, which you can see in this amazing picture of the line of climbers waiting to get there. Two climbers made it to the top but died after being caught in a traffic jam on the way down.
Joining me now is Alan Arnette. He's a mountain climber who's climbed Everest four times.
Alan, I was stunned. I saw that photo. It is jaw dropping. How common is it to see lines like this for those who have never climbed Mount Everest?
ALAN ARNETTE, HIGH-ALTITUDE MOUNTAIN CLIMBER: To the extent we're seeing, this one is very, very rare. It happens maybe every five or 10 years.
SAVIDGE: And what causes it? Is it the fact there's a limited amount of time in which you can summit and you've got more people perhaps than you have time?
[13:34:56] ARNETTE: Yes, there's a confluence of factors that have all come together this year with the perfect deadly storm on Everest. It starts with Nepal issued a record number of permits to foreigners of 381 permits, plus they require a Sherpa guide for each foreigner. That means there's 800 people just on the Nepal side.
The second thing is that normally the jet stream sits on top of the summit of Mount Everest for 50 out of the 52 weeks each year. Then it moves off amazingly in the middle of May and opens up what's called the weather windows or summit windows. Last year, there were 11 consecutive days, the longest on record. Normally, it's around five to seven to eight days. This year, it's been only five. So you have 800 people trying to squeeze through a very small window.
SAVIDGE: Right. The calendar is kind of condensed, if you will.
SAVIDGE: The Nepalese tourist department is suggesting that the traffic jams are contributing to the deaths is baseless. Would you agree or disagree?
ARNETTE: Both. If I look at the 10 deaths that occurred -- and sadly another one was reported just this morning of a young British gentleman. In the 10 deaths averaged in 2019, in my estimation, only four had anything to do with potential crowds. Because the other six either were not on the day of the crowds or they died of other causes unrelated to crowds, such as falling or some type of a health issue.
SAVIDGE: OK. And looking again at this photo, how hard is it, with your climbing experience, to sort of have to stand in line there, wait your turn, because I understand it can be, you know, several hours.
ARNETTE: In this case, this here, on May 23rd, it was two to three hours, in the picture you're seeing, and that's totally unacceptable, full stop.
I had similar experience on an 8000-meter mountain in 2013. The summit of that mountain is only about the size of a dining room table and I waited for an hour to be able to stand on the summit. And I was continuously questioning my sanity as I stood there.
Because what's happening is, when you're standing at almost 29,000 feet or 26,000 or 27,000 feet, you're using up your precious oxygen. We actually turned our oxygen off while standing in line there because you're not moving and you only need a very low flow or no flow.
But also, on Everest, at 8000-meters, almost 29,000, your body is slowly degrading. It's called the death zone for a reason. Bodies slowly die at those altitudes.
SAVIDGE: You're up at the altitudes where jets fly.
I'm wondering, do you believe there should be limited access? Is that the answer here, we have to cut back on the number of people going?
ARNETTE: That's the popular answer these days, is that Nepal needs to limit the number of permits, but that's not really the solution. Because, think about it, if you limited the number of permits to only 200 or 300 but only had the phenomenon like this year of only two or three summit days, you still have hundreds of people trying to squeeze through the eye of the needle. Simply, you'll have the same problem we do today.
If you want to put a cap on the number of climbers, it's going to have to be incredibly low, like 100 climbers, because the mountain can accommodate 100 people. That's what I had when I summited on May 21, 2011. I was the fourth person on the summit that day and had no problems. But there were still 100 people that day. And later on, people did report small waits of maybe 15, 20 minutes but certainly not two to three hours.
But putting a limit on the number of climbers, that's a Band-Aid to a bigger problem.
SAVIDGE: What about the criticism that, in some ways, it's become too commercialized and maybe too easy and people that perhaps should not be making the climb are, because they are supported and given help?
ARNETTE: Well, sadly, anytime we're talking about deaths it's tragic, it's devastating to the family. And I would reject the notion Everest or any of the 8,000-meter mountains are easy. There are some certainly some more attainable than others.
But you've hit on the key point in my opinion, and that is we have people too inexperienced to be on that mountain. In my opinion, many people should climb another 8000-meter mountain, a lower one, before they attempt Everest to see how their body performs at altitude.
Of the 10 people who died, around six have died from some form of altitude-related illnesses, and that's exacerbated by a longer summit time.
If you spend 10, 12, 14 hours just trying to go to the summit, typically, you don't take enough supplemental oxygen for that. And then you've got half the amount of time, maybe six or seven hours, to get back down at that pace. So you're talking about a 20-hour day above 26,000 feet and that's a recipe for disaster.
SAVIDGE: It is. And unfortunately, at least nine, maybe, you say, 10 deaths now attributed.
Alan Arnette, thank you very much for your insights and your view for the rest of us who have not made that climb. Thank you.
ARNETTE: Thank you for having me.
[13:39:56] SAVIDGE: Still ahead, he introduced legislation to tighten vaccine protocols in his state. He got death threats. We'll talk to that Colorado lawmaker, next.
SAVIDGE: The highly contagious measles virus has now hit half the country. Maine became the 25th state this week after a school-age child in Somerset County was exposed. That child had been vaccinated and is now fully recovered from the disease. We'll talk about how that happens in a minute.
The disease can cause severe health complication, including pneumonia, brain swelling and even death. Symptoms can last as long as 21 days.
I want to bring in Colorado State Representative Kyle Mullica. He received death threats earlier this month over his vaccine bill aimed at tightening vaccine requirements in his state. More on that in a moment.
But first, let me ask you this -- and thank you for joining us. We're seeing the outbreak grow larger and affecting people in 25 states, half the U.S. We should point out, you have worked as an emergency room nurse seeing people come in with preventable diseases. Do you believe this is public health emergency, and what do we do?
[13:45:09] STATE REP. KYLE MULLICA (D-CO): You know, it definitely is.
Thank you for having me.
And it's scary because, you know, we look at measles, and measles we thought was eradicated in the year 2000, and we see it coming back this year with a vengeance. And it's scary, like you said, because it can cause real damage.
And so we need to look at it from a policy perspective and what can we do with our policies to make sure our communities are safe. And I think it's important when we look at those policies and what we can do to make sure we don't have these preventable diseases out there, that we rely on those professionals and that we talk to those doctors and those health care professionals that do this every day.
And so, yes, we're seeing a resurgence in measles and other diseases come throughout the United States. And it's important that we do something.
SAVIDGE: All right, well the CDC and state health officials are considering banning people from flying to prevent transmission of the disease. It would be a "do not board" list. This measure has been used since 2007 for patients who have tuberculosis. And in 2014, it was used twice for measles. So if there something that you think states and local governments should consider perhaps?
MULLICA: We've seen other states, like Maine and Connecticut, look at that nonmedical exemption, which is big reason why our vaccine rates are so low, is that we see these communities that people just aren't vaccinating, and so eliminating those nonmedical exemptions has been a solution some other states have looked at. Here in Colorado, we looked at that solution and we decided to go a
route where we formalized a process on how you got that exemption. Instead of turning paperwork into a school, we wanted people to turn that paperwork into their local public health departments.
That's been the most interesting thing for me as a legislator. I'm an emergency room nurse and I ran for office because I think being a nurse is a perspective to have as a state legislator.
But to see how partisan this issue became. To me, when I walked into it, I never would have thought it was a partisan issue. It's a public health issue. It's about protecting our community.
MULLICA: And that was probably the most surprising thing.
SAVIDGE: It seemed surprising to me as well with the great intention you have and the expertise you bring.
When you sponsored this legislation and you get this push back, not just push back, you get death threats made against you, what was the part that got people so riled they felt they had to threaten your life?
MULLICA: You know, that's a good question. I don't think there's probably anything that we were doing that warranted that or really does warrant that.
A lot of the concerns we heard were around the safety of vaccines, around the state having the information. But again, you know, vaccines have been around for a long time, and they've done amazing things for our communities and saved hundreds of thousands if not millions of lives.
And to threaten to burn down my house with my children inside of it because I want to make sure our communities are safe, I haven't been able to wrap my head around it, and I just think it's completely unacceptable.
SAVIDGE: Yes, it is completely unacceptable, especially given the fact that the CDC says the vaccines have saved over 20 million lives and moving forward with it makes sense. Threatening people's lives doesn't.
Kyle Mullica, thank you very much. And we do appreciate your fighting on behalf of the health of many Americans. Thank you.
MULLICA: Thank you.
SAVIDGE: Still ahead, President Trump in Japan as key relationships between the U.S. and Asia seem to shift. Could a trade deal with Japan temper the trade war with China? We're live in Tokyo coming up.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [15:52:48] SAVIDGE: President Trump is now in Japan. The president
leaving multiple controversies behind. He will partake in mostly a ceremonial visit complete with golfing and sumo wrestling with the Japanese prime minister. They won't be wrestling together though.
On the policy front, however, looms the deepening trade rift with China and saber-rattling from both North Korea and Iran.
CNN White House correspondent, Kaitlan Collins, is in Tokyo.
And, Kaitlan, is this visit more about ceremony or substance? Which is it?
KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Mostly ceremony. That's what you're going to see, coming from these events, starting today, when the president and Prime Minister Abe are going to go play golf and then going to a sumo wrestling match and have dinner, focusing on those things throughout the week, of course, with the theme of the newly crowned emperor, that the president is going to meet.
But a lot of this ceremony has to do with the substance. Because Prime Minister Abe wants to keep President Trump in his good graces. He wants to impress him during this visit here. That is why he is the first foreign leader to visit with the newly crowned emperor, which is seen as a very significant invitation here in Japan.
But all of that is happening because the prime minister does not want President Trump to impose these auto tariffs on autos and auto parts. That is something he has been concerned about. And though the president recently delayed those tariffs another six months, whether or not he is going to make that decision, that is still something that is heavily weighing on the Japanese prime minister's mind.
The other big thing is North Korea, of course, because we know that the talks between the U.S. and North Korea have largely stalled since that summit ended in Hanoi. But North Korea recently started firing short-range missiles. The U.S. downplayed that and said they're not close enough to reach the United States, it is not as big of a concern as it could be.
But, for the Japanese, that's a big concern. Because those short- range missiles are a lot closer to Japan than they are to the United States. So that is something that he wants to make sure he encourages President Trump to keep the pressure on North Korea, in that sense.
Now, while this is supposed to be about ceremony, of course, we are dealing with the unpredictable president. So the question is, does any of this break through? And that's what we will be watching to see over this visit the next few days.
SAVIDGE: So a bit of business, a bit of sumo wrestling.
Kaitlan Collins, in Tokyo, thank you very much for that.
COLLINS: Yes. [13:55:06] SAVIDGE: Still ahead, Senator Sanders about to kick off his first home-state rally as he tries to bounce back from sliding poll numbers. What's his strategy to take back the number-one spot? We'll be live there.
SAVIDGE: Checking top stories, a manhunt under way at this hour for a man police say may have been involved in a bombing in Leon, France. At least 13 people were wounded Friday when a bomb went off at a popular shopping area, a 10-year-old child among those hurt. Police tweeted this photo of the man they believe is involved. They are asking the public for help with any information.
A federal judge has blocked Mississippi's law banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. That can be as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. The judge slammed Mississippi in his decision, saying, "The law prevents a woman's free choice," which, he wrote, "is central to personal dignity and autonomy." The ban would have taken effect in July. It is among several laws recently introduced by Republican-led states in an effort to challenge Roe v. Wade.
[13:59:43] And two men are dead after they tried to jump their car over an open drawbridge. Louisiana State Police say the men arrived at the bridge while it was closed for a boat crossing. A witness told police that the passenger got out of the car, and moved the gate arm, and then the men tried to reverse and drive up and over the ramp. But the car landed in the water and sank. Investigators are working to determine whether alcohol or drugs were a factor.