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Iran to Accelerate Nuclear Program as Trump and Kim Jong Un May Arrange Third Summit; Supreme Court to Announce Final Decisions of Term Tomorrow; Oklahoma Trial Under Way in Opioid Crisis. Aired 10:30- 11a ET

Aired June 26, 2019 - 10:30   ET



[10:32:03] JIM SCIUTTO, CNN ANCHOR, NEWSROOM: Just hours from now, President Trump is set to depart the U.S. for the G20 summit in Japan. We are learning now that behind-the-scene talks are under way for a third summit between President Trump and Kim Jong Un. This, of course, despite the fact that there's been no progress on denuclearization by North Korea and the second summit, in February, ended when they walked away with no agreement whatsoever.

POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR, NEWSROOM: That's right, that's right. So what' the thinking behind the third? We're hoping to find out more. Maybe we'll find out more at the G20.

Amid those behind-the-scenes talks, North Korea this morning is lashing out at what it calls "extremely hostile acts" from the Trump administration. Let's go to Seoul, South Korea. That's where our Paula Hancocks has more.

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Poppy and Jim, this information is coming from the very top here in South Korea. The president, Moon Jae-in, in a written interview with news agencies, has said that there has been behind-the-scenes ongoing dialogue between the U.S. and North Korea, trying to set up that third summit between President Trump and Kim Jong Un.

Now, President Moon also went on to say that this is with the backdrop of mutual understanding of each other's position following the Hanoi summit. Now, he's really trying to put a positive spin on that.

Of course, the Hanoi summit, both leaders walked away without agreement. But he's suggesting that there was more understanding, now, between those two leaders.

Now, President Moon also went on to say that North Korea could offer to give up the Yongbyon nuclear facility in return for the U.S. trying to loosen some of those sanctions.

But this is effectively what North Korea did offer at the Hanoi summit, according to the North Koreans. And President Trump at that point said it wasn't enough. The U.S. wanted some of these undisclosed sites that North Korea hasn't admitted to, to be part of that deal as well.

Now of course, President Trump is actually leaving for the region today. He'll be in this region at the G20 in Japan. And he'll also be here in Seoul over the weekend. Potentially, according to the Blue House, he is considering going to the DMZ, the Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea.

And it also comes on the same day that there's a North Korean state- run media article, KCNA, quoting the Foreign Ministry, slamming Trump advisors and slamming reports suggesting that they are still one of the worst human rights abusers in the world, calling what some of the advisors were talking about as hostility and vicious slander -- Jim and Poppy, back to you.

HARLOW: OK. Paula, thank you.

Tensions ratcheting up between the U.S. and Iran as President Trump takes personal digs at Iran's leaders and dismisses the potential consequences of war with Iran. Talking about hypotheticals. Listen.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: If something should happen, we're in a very strong position. It wouldn't last very long, I can tell you that. It would not last very long.

And I'm not talking boots on the ground, I'm not talking we're going to send a millions soldiers. I'm just saying, if something were to happen, wouldn't last very long.


[10:35:00] SCIUTTO: Well, it's not clear what the president based that comment on. Intelligence analysis, Iran has missiles. It has proxy forces around the world.

But his comments come as Iran announced that it would accelerate its nuclear program by increasing production of enriched uranium. This would be a violation of the international nuclear deal, which the White House, of course, drew the U.S. out of last year. Iran also announced it is still delivering oil to China, a violation of sanctions recently imposed by the U.S.

What we're learning now from the Supreme Court this morning, we've been waiting some very key decisions with enormous political implications. We're going to be live at the Supreme Court with an update, next.


[10:40:13] HARLOW: All right. We do have some breaking news this morning from the Supreme Court. They are wrapping up their term.

SCIUTTO: Jessica Schneider joins us now, live from the Supreme Court.

They've punted again, have they not? To tomorrow, on the really key decisions here. Are they trying to just drop those decisions and leave town?

JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Probably, Jim. They are definitely keeping us on edge out here, outside the Supreme Court. There are those two big decisions, still remaining. We thought we might get them today.

But turns out, it looks like we will get them tomorrow because the Supreme Court has announced that tomorrow is the final day of the term. So all signs are pointing to those two big decisions that we're waiting for, to be decided and announced tomorrow. Those two decisions relate to partisan gerrymandering, when politicians go too far in drawing district and congressional lines for political gain.

And then, of course, the biggie. Whether or not the Trump administration can add the citizenship question to the 2020 Census. And time is ticking on that because Census officials have said that they need to get this Census -- to start the printing process, by July 1st. So we will await that. We expect to see that tomorrow, its being the last day of the term.

The Supreme Court did issue a few decisions today. One in particular related to the 21st Amendment. Of course, the amendment that repealed prohibition. That related to a law out of Tennessee, and the liquor license requirements. Tennessee actually had a requirement in place, that if you wanted to get a liquor license, you had to be a resident of Tennessee for two years.

Proponents said it was well within the state's right under the 21st Amendment, to make and enact this sort of law. But the Supreme Court said no, it is a violation of the Commerce Clause. So that residency requirement has been struck down in Tennessee.

So some minor cases that played out inside the court today. We got those opinions. But still on edge for those big ones. In all, we've got five opinions that are left. Those should come down tomorrow.

And then, Jim and Poppy, one other thing we've been waiting for for a while, the decision on DACA. Of course, the Trump administration has been wanting to wind down the DACA program that was enacted by President Obama. That really protects about 700,000 Dreamers. These are the undocumented immigrants who came here, to the United States, as children.

The Trump administration wanting to wind down the program, the lower courts have been putting that on hold, not letting the Trump administration end it, allowing those DACA renewals to continue.

The Trump administration wants the Supreme Court to hear that case. We could hear tomorrow or toward the end of the week, whether or not the Supreme Court will hear that DACA case next term. So, really, like you said, Jim, the Supreme Court, keeping us on our toes and keeping us waiting until the very last minute, here, maybe so they can get out of town -- Jim and Poppy.

HARLOW: Well, you'll be there for us, Jess.


HARLOW: We're waiting for all of that news.


HARLOW: Thank you very much.

SCIUTTO: Yes, they give us the appetizers but not the main courses here.

HARLOW: There you go.

SCIUTTO: Maybe the hors d'oeuvres, even, not the main courses.

Now to Oklahoma, where a historic opioid crisis trial is seeing some of its harshest testimony against Big Pharma. The state's final witness, ripping into Johnson & Johnson's claim that the company bears zero responsibility for the crisis. The witness, calling the statement, quote, "absolutely incorrect."

HARLOW: Jean Casarez has been on this story and this trial from the beginning. She joins us now with more.

Jim and I, obviously, care deeply about it. The show cares deeply about it. This is a trial about to wrap up --

JEAN CASAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And this is such history --


CASAREZ: -- because this is the first time that there ever has been a trial, that it's gone to trial.

And the theory is public nuisance. That Johnson & Johnson procured the wrong narcotic ingredients, sold them to the manufacturers of the opioid pills. They themselves had a fentanyl patch and their own pill.

But came into the state of Oklahoma, touted the benefits, everything. Did not talk about the risks. And thus, the Oklahoma opioid crisis was born, which is a public nuisance. And the only way to get rid of it is through abatement.

And so the final witness for the state of Oklahoma was the mental health commissioner. And here is one thing she said on the stand -- she said many things, but -- "They unleashed a series of bombs on the United States of America, and those bombs hit squarely -- squarely -- on the middle of our country in Oklahoma. When you prey on a state that is vulnerable to addiction, that offends my decency.

And the mental health commissioner said that an abatement plan she has in place, that it's 30 years, $17 billion. And without that plan, that people will continue to die in Oklahoma. Now, it will be the defense side.

Johnson & Johnson says, "We had on the label. We had on the paperwork. We told people of the risks --


CASAREZ: -- "we came into Oklahoma. We said it was safe and effective because the FDA was saying the very same thing at the very same time." And they have their evidence. And remember, two pharmaceuticals have already settled.


CASAREZ: Purdue Pharma, $270 million; $85 million for Teva Pharmaceuticals.

[10:45:02] HARLOW: Yes, just yesterday. Look -- look, and the FDA has a lot of questions to answer here. I hope this comes up on the debate stage tonight.

SCIUTTO: Absolutely.

HARLOW: I hope they talk about this.

SCIUTTO: What is their plan for addressing it.

HARLOW: Yes. Absolutely.

SCIUTTO: It's a national scourge.

CASAREZ: And on what level.



HARLOW: Thank you, Jean.

SCIUTTO: Good to have you on the story.

CASAREZ: Thank you.

HARLOW: Busy day at CNN. Here's "What to Watch."

TEXT: What to Watch... Soon: Elizabeth Warren visits FL migrant facility; 1pm ET, President Trump leaves for G20; 9pm ET, First Democratic Presidential Debate


SCIUTTO: Still ahead this hour on this broadcast, the Trump administration, laying out its vision for peace and economic success across the Middle East. But one of those countries -- a key side, one of the sides in the conflict -- is rejecting the idea. They're not even negotiating here, snubbing the president's son-in-law in the process.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [10:51:01] SCIUTTO: This is the House Oversight Committee, live now, voting on whether to subpoena the White House counselor, Kellyanne Conway, over alleged violations of the Hatch Act, this being basically a federal employee making political statements, campaign-related statements.

Democrats control the committee, likely to go towards a subpoena there.

HARLOW: One interesting note. Of all the subpoenas, the only person who's actually complied and is showing up is Bob Mueller.

SCIUTTO: Yes. And apparently --

HARLOW: Right? And Don Jr. did that behind closed doors.

SCIUTTO: That's true.

HARLOW: But otherwise, we'll see.

SCIUTTO: And Mueller did not want to come testify.

HARLOW: Right. Right, right, right.

SCIUTTO: But he is complying with the subpoena.

HARLOW: Right. OK.

Also happening right now, the Trump administration is laying out plans for peace in the Middle East through an economic plan. The president's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, has spent the week leading a Peace to Prosperity workshop. This is him in Bahrain earlier today.

The administration's proposal is to try to raise -- you see Tony Blair there -- try to raise $50 billion in investments to help the Palestinian economy.

SCIUTTO: That's right. But many Palestinian leaders who -- we should note -- were not in attendance -- they've rejected the plan. They say it's about far more than money here. It's about land, it's about rights, it's about access to control their own borders. CNN's Jeremy Diamond joins us now from Bahrain.

Jeremy, this is the administration's approach here (ph) to the Israeli-Palestinian crisis. Even North Korea. You hear the president talking a lot about condos on the North Korean coast.

I mean, are any of the president's advisors making it clear to him that this conflict is about more than investment and dollars?

JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Yes. I think so. And I do think the administration understands that ultimately, this economic plan that they're proposing, this $50 billion in investments over 10 years, is totally contingent on resolving those thorny political issues. We heard Jared Kushner say as much yesterday. And I also sat down

today with Jason Greenblatt, one of the authors of this peace plan. Here's what he told me


JASON GREENBLATT, U.S. SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR INTERNATIONAL NEGOTIATIONS: None of it will become a reality unless there's a political agreement. And we understand that.

There are two parts to this equation: a political agreement and an economic vision. You can't have one without the other in either direction. And I know that people are distorting this and saying that we're trying to buy Palestinian rights, bribe them, that there's no political plan. None of that is true because we cannot pull this off unless there's a political agreement between the two sides.


DIAMOND: And that is indeed the criticism that we're hearing from the Palestinians, who have said -- who have rejected this administration's economic plan out of hand, suggesting that it is indeed a bribe in exchange for Palestinian dreams of a sovereign Palestinian state.

This administration did not discuss any of those core political issues during this economic conference here in Bahrain. But they are saying, again, that it is contingent on that agreement eventually happening.

But when are we expecting to see that? Well it's going to be some months from now. We're expecting Israeli elections to come up in September, and this administration has made very clear that it cannot release the political component of this plan until those elections happen. And that means that this is likely to get pushed off until November -- Jim.

HARLOW: Jeremy Diamond, it must be fascinating to be there. Thank you very much for the reporting.

A 9/11 first responder says he saw a different side of --


[10:54:18] HARLOW: -- the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell. What he says McConnell promised during that crucial meeting, about saving the Victims' Compensation Fund.


[10:58:51] HARLOW: All right. We do have breaking news just in. The House Oversight Committee, just voting to subpoena White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway. This is over alleged violations of the Hatch Act. We'll see if she complies with that subpoena, and testifies.

Also this morning, 9/11 first responders, really, American heroes, are saying that they will take Mitch McConnell at his word. Of course, this follows a tense Capitol Hill meeting with the Senate majority leader.

Those first responders say that McConnell has committed to hold a vote to extend compensation for victims of the 9/11 attack. Listen to this.


JOHN FEAL, 9/11 FIRST RESPONDER: Mitch McConnell showed his humanity yesterday in that meeting. I saw a different side of Mitch McConnell that I had not seen in previous meetings. And I believe, with Rich (ph) there and my other guys, we tugged at his heartstrings.

And when we gave him Luis Alvarez's badge, I think he sensed our urgency this time. And I think he understands, now, that we have a serious problem on our hands in the 9/11 community. And I'm confident that he's going to stick to his word. And, listen, we're going to take him at face value. We're going to hold his feet to the fire still.


[11:00:01] HARLOW: All right. Well right now, the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund just doesn't have enough money to pay fully for those current claims.