Return to Transcripts main page


Department Of Homeland Security: Dangerous Overcrowding In Migrant Detention; Candidates Stumping In Iowa Over July Fourth Weekend; U.S. Women's National Team Advances To Women's World Cup Final. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired July 3, 2019 - 05:30   ET


[05:30:00] MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN ANCHOR: Extreme overcrowding, prolonged detention, immediate attention required. Damning findings by an internal watchdog as the border crisis spirals out of control.

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: One win away. The U.S. Women's National team headed back to the World Cup Final. We'll find out who they play this afternoon.

Of course, the biggest question for the U.S. Women's National team is will they get Megan Rapinoe, the captain and arguably its best player back for that World Cup Final. She missed yesterday.


BRIGGS: What a terrific match it was.

KOSINSKI: You want her to be there when they win --


KOSINSKI: Not if --

BRIGGS: I would think even if --

KOSINSKI: -- when.

BRIGGS: -- she's hobbling down that field she will play. She's a warrior.

KOSINSKI: She'll get a kick in there somehow, yes.

BRIGGS: Welcome back to EARLY START. I'm Dave Briggs.

KOSINSKI: And I'm Michelle Kosinski. It is 30 minutes past the hour.

Well, a new and dire warning about conditions for migrants detained at the southern border. Extreme overcrowding and prolonged detention without proper food, hygiene or laundry facilities -- that's just part of what's laid out in a report by the Department of Homeland Security's internal watchdog. The I.G. says these and other problems require immediate attention and action. Over the last few months, a growing influx of migrant families and children has led to longer times in custody and overcrowding at facilities meant to be temporary.

BRIGGS: The situation at the border grows more urgent by the day.

The Border Patrol now leading a search for a 2-year-old missing in the Rio Grande. On Monday, a woman who just crossed the river into Texas told agents she had lost her daughter on the way.

Of course, this comes just a week after that devastating image of a man and his daughter who drowned trying to cross the Rio Grande.

CNN's Nick Valencia has more on conditions at the border from El Paso, Texas.


NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Dave and Michelle, this new report by the Office of the Inspector General is based off of five visits to the southern border, principally in McAllen and Weslaco, Texas. And what is clear from the images that are emerging is just how overcrowded these facilities are. In some cases, migrants don't even have enough room to lay down comfortably on the concrete.

According to inspectors in this report, the conditions in these facilities are so dangerous they pose a health and safety risk not just to the agents but also to the migrants in custody.

Now, here are some other things that stand out from the report. Half of the 8,000 detainees in custody in McAllen were held longer than the 72 hours, which is required under law. A third of the children were also held longer than the law allows.

Now, we've heard from DHS officials who say they're doing the best they can with the resources they have. But to Democratic lawmakers, some who visited the southern border this week, it's simply not enough -- Dave, Michelle.


KOSINSKI: I can't wait until we get a good story -- an uplifting story on the border. Thank you for that, though.

Florida Congressman -- woman Frederica Wilson claims when Democrats toured a migrant detention center in South Florida on Tuesday, they were only permitted to see a single classroom and an empty dorm. Somehow, this is not surprising -- the lack of access.

They also saw some supplies like soap and toothpaste. And, of course, that is where the access ended.


REP. FREDERICA WILSON (D-FL): I asked to see the girls. There are 700 girls in this facility and I saw 30. When I tried to go into the dormitory that houses the girls, they said to me they were in intake and it might be dangerous or contagious.


BRIGGS: There is also new fallout from that Facebook group of current and former Customs and Border Patrol agents who joked about the plight of migrants.

In an exclusive interview with CNN, one agent claims he heard a supervisor making fun of dead immigrants.




ANONYMOUS AGENT, U.S. CUSTOMS AND BORDER PATROL: That what difference does it make? It's just another life.

He made a comment also regarding running over illegals. And I'm like, you cannot run over people.


BRIGGS: The U.S. Border Patrol chief says the words of those few individuals on Facebook directly undermines the public's trust.

A new CNN poll does show about three-quarters of Americans consider the situation at the border a crisis. That's up from less than half in January.

KOSINSKI: President Trump taking a direct shot at the Supreme Court days after it ruled the 2020 census cannot contain a citizenship question. The president tweeting it's "A very sad time for America when the Supreme Court of the United States won't allow a question of, 'Is this person a citizen of the United States?'"

He also vowed to keep fighting to add that question even though just hours earlier, his administration announced the census was going to print without the citizenship question.

Now, to the 2020 presidential race. Former vice president Joe Biden and Sen. Kamala Harris are campaigning head-to-head today in Iowa as new poll numbers show Harris and Sen. Elizabeth Warren solidifying their status as top tier presidential candidates.

BRIGGS: Still, there is some room for error. Polls show 60 percent of likely Iowa caucusgoers say they may change their mind before the vote.

[05:35:03] As for their second choice, Iowa Democrats picked Harris, followed by Warren and Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

On the issues, the polls suggest we'll likely hear a lot about health care, climate change, and immigration. Many of the candidates will be spending the holiday week on the stump

in Iowa.

And we cannot wait to see a Chris Cuomo interview with Joe Biden.


BRIGGS: It starts airing here --


BRIGGS: -- Friday morning.

KOSINSKI: Yes to that.

BRIGGS: That will be good T.V. because he's been relatively hiding from the national interviews --


BRIGGS: -- and Chris Cuomo is a tough --

KOSINSKI: And all of these questions about every controversy.

BRIGGS: Yes, it will be fascinating.

Let's bring in Nathan Gonzales, editor and publisher of "Inside Elections" and a CNN political analyst. Good to see you, sir.

KOSINSKI: Hey, Nathan.


BRIGGS: So we want to talk about 2020 and specifically, this Quinnipiac number which shows, once again -- I think the nickname President Trump might try out on Biden is "Sliding Biden" because he is down --


BRIGGS: -- once again. Yeah, I know. I'm pretty good at this nickname things, too.

KOSINSKI: I guess the campaign should thank you for that later, Dave Briggs.

BRIGGS: Biden is down eight percent. And, who else, Kamala Harris the riser, up 13 points.

What's your broad takeaway from this? Were people just supporting Biden based on a memory and once they were faced with the actual Biden, they weren't so thrilled with what they saw?

GONZALES: Well, I think his support was more than just name I.D. I mean, there are many Democratic primary voters who have had -- you know, they've known Joe Biden for a long time and I think they appreciate what he's done, including being vice president to President Obama. I think there was -- it was deeper than name I.D. but also, it's not an impenetrable lead that he -- that he has right now.

I'm excited about this point in the race because we were so quick after the debate that we have to declare a winner within just a couple of minutes, but now we know what some actual primary voters think. And that's what's most important, particularly in Iowa.

And that's why this poll, I think, should be concerning for Vice President Biden because there's been some movement, including with Sen. Harris and Sen. Warren.

But also, it should be concerning for Sen. Bernie Sanders, who is dropping. Bernie Sanders doesn't have the advantage of being the only one talking about his messages, like what he did in 2016. There are 10 or 12 candidates that are using -- that are talking about his same issues. And I don't know that he can recover if he continues to lose support.

KOSINSKI: I have to say, though, when you see these numbers shifting dramatically and it's kind of like whoa, Kamala Harris, how much of this do you think is just the excitement over the new person who is strong going up against Biden? And if this was all about that debate performance, how much do you think Biden can turn it around in this performance about to happen with Chris Cuomo?

GONZALES: Michelle, you are exactly right. I think we have -- we still have a long way to go. We're going to have more twists and turns in this race.

I keep coming back to October -- September-October of 2015 when Ben Carson was surging in the polls. He was even with Donald Trump, even pulling ahead of Donald Trump in some national and some Iowa polls. That was just a couple of months before Iowa. And, Ben Carson ended up finishing fourth in Iowa, barely registering in New Hampshire.

And, you know, I think there are going to be more candidates who have a surge or an opportunity. It's who can -- after you get a surge, can you build on that and kind of have a new foundation for your campaign? I think that's what's key for Senators Harris and Warren right now.

BRIGGS: All right, let's turn to the border now and "Shameful" is what the conditions are, according to the New York "Daily News" here. There are some brutal pictures that we showed earlier in the program.

But the politics of this is interesting because the country does now feel this is a full-blown crisis. It is now three-quarters of the country, according to our own CNN polling, that says people consider it a crisis.

And the number I focused on is the Democrats who have said it is. Seventy percent of Democrats said it's a crisis. That's up from 23 percent in January. Now, that is for different reasons. Democrats feel it's a crisis because of the humanitarian conditions at the border. But are they vulnerable -- these 2020 candidates -- given that their

stance right now is decriminalizing border crossing and giving them health care?

GONZALES: Yes. I've been trying to think a lot politically about what's amiss here and I do think that the two parties are focused on different parts of the problem.

Democrats are going to these centers and facilities. They're trying to figure out how to improve the conditions.

Republicans and the White House are saying don't come at all. They -- we shouldn't -- you know, these people shouldn't be coming here at all.

And I think both of those are problems but I think the two parties are not willing to solve the other -- you know, what the other person -- what the other side sees as an issue. And that's where I think we're missing each other.

Moving forward to the general election for the presidential race, depending on the nominee, there is the potential for this to be a liability for Democrats.

If you're one of the candidates who said not only should we not have any new -- a new wall, there shouldn't be any wall or any barrier or we shouldn't criminalize -- we shouldn't penalize people who are coming across the border illegally, I think that is a potential liability for Democrats.

[05:40:04] BRIGGS: All right, this issue not going away.

Nathan Gonzales, good to see you, sir.

KOSINSKI: Thanks, Nathan.

GONZALES: Thank you.

BRIGGS: Have a happy Fourth.

GONZALES: Happy Fourth.

BRIGGS: All right, if we haven't pumped C.C. enough, here's one more reminder -- a CNN exclusive you don't want to miss. Former vice president Joe Biden sits down with Chris Cuomo starting at 6:00 a.m. right here on CNN. It should be a fantastic interview.


LEE IACOCCA, AMERICAN AUTOMOBILE EXECUTIVE: Quality, hard work, commitment -- the stuff America was made of. Without them, there is no future.


BRIGGS: Lee Iacocca, a legend in the auto industry, has died. For decades, he was one of American's best-known business executives.

The former Chrysler CEO was also a master pitchman, appearing in a series of T.V. commercials telling consumers, quote, "If you can find a better car, buy it."

He's also credited with saving the number-three automaker from bankruptcy in the 1980s, which got him on the cover of "Time" magazine -- "Detroit's Comeback Kid."

Before that, at Ford, Iacocca developed the iconic Mustang.

Once asked about the secret to his success, he said, "I hire people brighter than me and then I get out of the way."

Iacocca is survived by his two daughters and eight grandchildren. He was 94.

And I have to say I was like a young Alex P. Keaton who idolized Lee Iacocca, so I was a little emotional when I saw this, this morning.


BRIGGS: The first autobiography I wrote -- read, rather, was Iacocca.

KOSINSKI: When you were like --

BRIGGS: It sold millions of copies. I think I --

KOSINSKI: six. That's good.

BRIGGS: I think I was eight at the time. But look, I recommend it. It's a terrific book. Hopefully, it rises --


BRIGGS: -- on Amazon.

But he was an iconic -- imagine developing the minivan and the Mustang.


BRIGGS: Two opposite ends of American culture, really.

KOSINSKI: I think he'd be proud, Dave.

BRIGGS: He's a legend.

KOSINSKI: Look at that video, though. It looks like it comes from another planet. That's how you know you're getting older.

BRIGGS: Indeed.

KOSINSKI: It's just the 80s.

OK. Well, giving birth is painful enough. An epidural may help, but imagine if the tube got lodged in your back. That's next.



[05:46:50] BRIGGS: All right, a check on "CNN Business" at 5:46 Eastern time, and your leading indicator this morning.

Trade optimism is driving the stock market higher. The S&P 500 closed at 2,973 points Tuesday, its highest level ever.

Stocks are doing well but they could be doing even better if it weren't for Trump's trade wars. Experts say the S&P 500 would be at 3,100 points if you took out all the days where trade affected the market. There are still underlying worries about the global economy.

The temporary truce between President Trump and President Xi Jinping did not cancel tariffs that are affecting the economy. It's also the threat of new tariffs on $4 billion worth of goods imported from the European Union.

Nevertheless, Trump tweeted earlier Tuesday that the economy was, quote, "The best it is has ever been."

KOSINSKI: It's billed as a salute to America but there are growing questions whether the president is planning a salute to Trump. Yesterday, he claimed in a tweet that, "The Pentagon and our great military leaders are thrilled to be participating in a military parade."

Also, sources tell us the president's political allies received some of the 500 VIP seats. Those tickets will grant entry into the areas closest to the Lincoln Memorial where the president will speak.

Remember, this event is behind held on the National Mall, not at a private space like the White House. So that is not sitting well with former Defense Sec. Leon Panetta.


LEON PANETTA, FORMER SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: The president does a great deal of harm by politicizing this event.

I think the military -- frankly, we have always taken the position -- those of us that have been involved with the military -- that we don't have to display our power to anybody. We're the strongest military power on the face of the earth.

We don't have to roll tanks down the street, we don't have to roll troops down the street because we know that we are strong and we can take on any enemy.


BRIGGS: Nine hundred members of the D.C. National Guard have been called up to help traffic control and security. That's nearly triple the typical Guard activation for that event.

Overnight, the Pentagon began delivering a pair of tanks to the National Mall for a small stationary display of American military might.

KOSINSKI: The U.S. Women's National team is, yes, headed back to the World Cup Final. The defending champs beating England two to one in a hard-fought semifinal.

CNN's Amanda Davies is live in Lyon, France with more. Amanda, I am sorry about your home team. I'm sorry about the tea-drinking at the end, but the Americans were incredible, even without Megan Rapinoe playing.

AMANDA DAVIES, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: They were. I'd love to say that every time I speak to you this just gets better and better, but it doesn't. Sometimes in life you've just sort of put your hands up and say you were beaten by the better team, and that is absolutely what I've got to do this morning.

The USA deservedly celebrating a place in a record fifth Women's World Cup Final at the expense of England. It was a game that had a bit of everything.

There was the shock and intrigue when Megan Rapinoe was left out of the starting lineup, only for it to be revealed later on she's suffering from a slight hamstring injury. But, no Rapinoe, no problem.

[05:50:02] There was some stunning quality across the board. Christen Press with her early goal. Crystal Dunn was a rocking defense. Rose Lavelle was immense in midfield.

And then, there was Alex Morgan on her birthday, creating headlines not only with her goal, her sixth of the tournament, but also her celebration.

She's not giving anything away about what she meant by sipping her tea. She left us guessing. Was it a dig at a very English tradition? Was it a reference to the Boston Tea Party on July Fourth week?

Regardless, it was a 30th birthday for her to remember.


REPORTER: Would you say this is the best birthday ever?

ALEX MORGAN, CO-CAPTAIN, U.S. WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAM: I would say so. I mean, how can you beat this? Yes.


DAVIES: Well, what a night as well for goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher, answering those who have questioned her credentials in pretty sensational form. She approved the match winner, really. She saved the penalty from England's captain Steph Houghton late on in the second half.

It really was as stunning as you'd have wanted a semifinal to be. I felt privileged to be there.

But despite the results, the USA know they'll be back here in the big one on Sunday. And later on Wednesday, we'll find out if it will be The Netherlands or Sweden joining them.

KOSINSKI: Amanda, I love your British graciousness and we will have a cup of tea in your honor today.

We'll be right back.


[05:55:21] BRIGGS: Putting his foot down without a Nike swoosh on it, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell slamming the shoe brand's decision to cancel a sneaker featuring the Betsy Ross version of the American flag from the 1770s.

A Nike spokesperson tells CNN the company decided to halt distribution based on concerns it could unintentionally offend and detract from the July Fourth holiday.

But according to "The Wall Street Journal," Nike received a complaint from former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick because the Betsy Ross flag represents a time when African Americans were enslaved.


SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY): I hope Nike either releases these shoes or some other shoemaker picks up the flag, puts it on a pair of shoes, and starts selling it. I'll make the first order.


BRIGGS: Republican Gov. Doug Ducey of Arizona retaliating against Nike -- or attempting to -- ordering the state to revoke a financial incentive package for the company to build a plant outside Phoenix. But in a twist, Georgia Lord, the mayor of Goodyear, Arizona where the plant is supposed to be built, says she will honor the deal with Nike.

KOSINSKI: Mourners lined up outside a Long Island funeral home to honor September 11th hero, Luis Alvarez. He'll be laid to rest today after succumbing Saturday to a 9/11-related cancer.

In his dying days, Alvarez valiantly tried to get first responders a permanent Victim Compensation Fund.


LUIS ALVAREZ, 9/11 FIRST RESPONDER: The families would love to have time with them. I made mine have time with me.

(END VIDEO CLIP) KOSINSKI: Alvarez will be honored with a key to New York City following an emotional appeal by fellow 9/11 first responder John Feal.

An 18-year-old new mom says she was in agonizing pain and unable to walk after giving birth because a hospital mishap left her with an epidural stuck in her back for days.

Selena Gray gave birth to her daughter last week at Sacred Heart Hospital in Milton, Florida. Before going into labor she received an epidural in her spine, but Gray says the procedure was botched, leaving the epidural's plastic entry tube lodged in her back.

Gray then transferred to another hospital where -- good news -- it was successfully removed. Doctors there could not get a firm time table for her recovery though or even guarantee that we should fully recover.

BRIGGS: I was in pain throughout that entire story.

Transporting a corpse in the state of Nevada does not qualify you to --


BRIGGS: -- drive in a carpool lane, believe it or not.


BRIGGS: New HVO lanes just opened on I-15 and on Monday, a trooper pulled over a man driving a hearse. When the officer told him he was being stopped for an HOV violation, the driver pointed to the casket in the back and said, "He doesn't count?"

That prompted this tweet from the Nevada Highway Patrol. "I guess we should clarify this. Living, breathing people count for the HOV lane. The driver was given a warning."

KOSINSKI: Just because he was dead didn't mean he needed to get somewhere. It's still a person.

BRIGGS: You have a valid point.

Just another day at the beach for people in sunny Florida ahead of the Fourth -- or was it? Check out this video showing several sharks swimming just feet away from people at Daytona Beach. Some beachgoers had no idea they were this close to sharks until they were shown the video later.

The head of the Florida Program for Shark Research says blacktip sharks are common in the area. He says they generally mind their own business but they do swim in shallower water, hunting for baitfish.

I've swam with blacktip sharks. It's not a big concern. Don't stay away from the beach, folks.

KOSINSKI: Yes, those overhead pictures are always amazing when you see a million --


KOSINSKI: -- sharks there on the water.

Thanks for joining us. I'm Michelle Kosinski.

BRIGGS: I'm Dave Briggs. Here's "NEW DAY." We'll see you tomorrow.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We saw women placed in prison-like cells. They were sleeping on the floor. Those are just disturbing images.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm very confident that we are meeting and, in fact, most of the time, exceeding these standards.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A border patrol agent who's had enough.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're going to have planes going overhead and we're going to have some tanks stationed outside.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We have this special VIP area being auctioned off to Trump cronies and donors to the RNC.

PANETTA: We're the strongest military power on the face of the earth and we have never had to display that power.


ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Alisyn Camerota and John Berman.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome to our viewers in the United States and all around the world. This is NEW DAY. It's Wednesday, July third. It's 6:00 here in New York.

And these are the pictures America is waking up to. Look at this. "Shameful" -- that's the New York "Daily News." "Squalor Pervasive" in "The New York Times."