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World Cup, Equal Pay For Better Work; Iran To Break Nuclear Accord; America's Choice 2020, Joe Biden's Apology; Britain Seized Tanker Claiming It Was Violating Oil Sanctions; Operations Returning To Normal After Earthquake; New Charges For Billionaire Epstein; Johnson And Johnson Wants Opioid Case Tossed; Judge wants Spacey Accuser's Cell Phone; Health Scare For Stevie Wonder; Meghan And Harry Release Archie Christening Photos. Aired 4-4:30a ET

Aired July 8, 2019 - 04:00   ET



JESSICA DEAN, CNN HOST: Champions again. Can the U.S. Women's National Team spark action on equal pay for equal work after a dominating World Cup?

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN HOST: Iran escalating once again, breaking its commitment to the nuclear deal. How much uranium will Tehran enrich and how will the West respond?


JOE BIDEN, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, 2020 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm sorry for any of the pain or misconception it may have caused anybody.


DEAN: Joe Biden apologizes for a comments about working with segregationists, but he is mounting a vigorous defense of his record on issues of race. Welcome to our viewers in the United States and all around the world. This is "Early Start," I'm Jessica Dean in for Christine Romans.

BRIGGS: Good morning to all of you, I'm Dave Briggs. Monday, July 8, it is 4 a.m. in New York, 12:30 p.m. in Tehran, 10:00 a.m. in France, such, where we begin this morning. The U.S. women's soccer team rewriting the record books sparking a movement with their stunning dominant performance in France.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That is it, U.S. wins their fourth World Cup!


BRIGGS: Team USA never trailed in the tournament, never, capturing its second straight World Cup title with a dominating 2-no performance over the Netherlands. There were plenty of fans shouting USA, but this chant is resonating across continents.


CROWD: Equal pay. Equal pay. Equal pay.


BRIGGS: Many of the fans, female and male, chanting equal pay, equal pay after the victory the president was asked if female athletes should get paid the same as male athletes.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I would like to see that. I would also like to look at numbers because when you look at World Cup soccer that is one thing. And you also have to look at soccer, professional soccer. You have to see who's taking in what. So I don't know what those numbers are. I would like to see that, but, again, you have to look at the great stars of the men's soccer, the great stars of the women's soccer and you have to see year round, how are they all drawing?


DEAN: Worth noting here a gigantic $370 million pay gap between the men's World Cup prize money last year versus the women this year, but when it comes to revenue over the last three years, the women's team fairing slightly better than the men with the U.S. set to honor its returning heroes, what effect will this team have off the field? We go now live to Leone, France. We bring in Amanda Davies. Amanda, you have been busy for the last 24 hours. How are things settling in now that it's all over?

AMANDA DAVIES, CNN WORLD SPORTS: Oh, Jessica, yes, welcome here to Leone the morning after the night before. But if ever there was winning a match that means more than just winning the battle on the pitch, it was what we saw here on Sunday. The U.S. Women's Team really creating history with that victory over the Netherlands becoming champions for a record extending fourth time at a tournament that many players, current and former, are talking about as the best standard of women's soccer ever.

The Dutch did give them a test, but who else was it going to be, but Meghan Rapinoe, captain fantastic, to break the deadlock, the player who's made as many headlines off the pitch as on it over the last few weeks. A goal that also saw playing the golden boot for the tournament's top scorer and what a moment as well for Rose Navalle. She scored the second. Four years after sitting at home watching the victory in Canada while eating pizza.

Speaking of watching of her, the result was celebrated by fans across the USA, but this tournament really has increased the visibility of the women's game as you were talking about. See more eyeballs on it than ever before. A fact that hasn't been lost on these U.S. Women as they fight for causes so much bigger than trophy.


MEGAN RAPINOE, USWNT CO-CAPTAIN: I think everyone is ready for this conversation to move to the next step. I think we're done with are we worth it? Should we have equal pay? Is it, you know -- is the markets the same? Yes. Yes. Everyone's done with that. I mean, we put on as all players, I'm saying, every player at this World Cup put on the most incredible show that you could ever ask for. We can't do anything more.


[04:05:00] DAVIES: And it's no surprise that the body representing the U.S. Women with their lawsuit used the moment minutes after the trophy celebration. They issue a statement which really hit hard against U.S. Soccer. They said the sad equation remains all too clear, Americans won't stand for it anymore.

These athletes generate more revenue, gone on a higher TV ratings, but get paid less simply because they are women. And we know the mediation process between the two sides is set to get underway. But before that the World Cup winners rightly enjoying their moment. Returning home later on Monday before a (Inaudible) parade for New York later on Wednesday for which I'm sure you guy, will have the best view in the house.

BRIGGS: We will. We cannot wait for that parade. Amanda, thanks so much. And just to clear some few things up here --

DEAN: She doesn't think you like to say.

BRIGGS: --on the prize money disparity. Look, huge fan of this women's team. Clearly Meghan Rapinoe, Alex Morgan are bigger stars than anyone on the men's side. But the men's World Cup, the last time around made $6 billion. This World Cup is expected to make less than $200 million. 6 billion here, less than 200 million over here. So, how can you dole out equal money when the pie is so much greater?

DEAN: There's a lot of questions there.

BRIGGS: It's not as simple as TV ratings.

DEAN: Right.

BRIGGS: It's not as simple as revenue in the four year cycle domestically. It's not that simple.

DEAN: You're making it very simple there. There's a lot to this argument. There's a lot of layers. They have a lot of arguments to make, but we don't have all that time unfortunately.

BRIGGS: No, they deserve a raise.

DEAN: They do.

BRIGGS: That we agree on. But we will move on to Iran now and how the U.S. will respond to Iran

exceeding the uranium enrichment limits it agreed to and the landmark nuclear deal. President Trump gave a first indication last night.


TRUMP: Iran better be careful, because you enrich for one reason, and I won't tell you what that reason is, but it's no good. They better be careful.


BRIGGS: Iran's move comes more than a year after the president withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and re-imposed tough economic sanctions. CNN's Fred Pleitgen just back from assignment in Tehran. And he joins us live this morning from Moscow. Good morning, Fred. Where are we headed?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, good morning Dave, it is actually quite a significant move on the part of the Iranians. Because the Iranians had already said that they were going to produce more low enriched uranium. But now they're actually increasing the quality and the enrichment level of that uranium.

Before that the uranium was enrich to about 3.67 percent and now the Iranians haven't said how much, but it's going to be about 5 percent that they are enriching it to. So, it's a higher grade quality of uranium, but to put things in perspective for you, that's the kind of uranium that can still only be used for civilian purposes. If the Iranians were going to build a bomb, for instance, they would need uranium enriched to about 90 percent.

So, these are still pretty far away from doing that. But the big question, of course is why are the Iranians doing that? And they say the fact is very simple is that they have the nuclear agreement that they say they have been abiding by in full. Now they're breaching some of the provisions. They say, they're doing that because they're not getting any of the benefits of the nuclear agreement which is the sanctions relief that they were promised under the nuclear agreement.

Obviously the sanctions on the part of the U.S. had gotten stronger and the Iranians are saying they want the Europeans to come up with a mechanism to get around these sanctions. The Europeans are saying that's in the work, but it takes time. The Iranians are saying that they're patience is running out. And they're also saying, Dave, that in the next 60 days they're going to go to their next stage where they are going to breach even more provisions of the nuclear agreement. They haven't yet said that with that's going to be, but the say it's going to be an ongoing process. So it certainly seems as though the tensions in that region are only going to increase, Dave.

BRIGGS: Yes. Continuing to escalate there. Fred Pleitgen, live for us this morning, thank you.

DEAN: Iran's uranium enrichment move comes at a pivotal moment. The country and its proxy is abetting increasingly aggressive in the last few weeks. Now Tehran is demanding Britain release Iranian oil tanker seized by royal marines off Gibraltar. That is where CNN's Nic Robertson is standing by live with the latest this morning. Nic?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Jessica, I don't know if you can see over my shoulder here, but that is the super tanker, the Grace One that's full of bad Iranian oil. And just off to the side of it, you see the British naval vessel, the HMS Echo where it's sitting out here in the water. The HMS echo is doing loops guard around the Grace One super tanker guarding it. The Iranians this morning saying that they are using political, economic and diplomatic -- political, legal, diplomatic means, everything at their disposal to get this vessel released.

They say that it wasn't on its way to Syria, which was the reason the British and the Gibraltar authorities impounded it in the first place. Because they said they believed that it was on its way to Syria and it was breaking E.U. sanctions.

[04:10:04] But right now the Iranians are essentially saying that Britain has acted as a proxy here for the United States, that the U.S. request, this is what the Iranians are saying and also the Spanish foreign minister, acting foreign minister here is saying as well, that the vessel was impounded by Gibraltar and British authorities at the request of the United States.

The Iranians are saying, there's no way this vessel was going to Syria. They want their oil back. They're demanding that it be released. They're calling it piracy and they've even said the term British vessel should be captured in the same way as the Grace One here. So the tensions on this are quite high and it is a point of significant tension with Britain. The British ambassador has been called in for questioning twice in Tehran.

It is a point of tension with Britain, where Britain, unlike the United States, still supports that nuclear deal along with the European partners. But Britain getting stronger and stronger supporting what the United States is saying backing it on the shooting down of the U.S. drone in the Strait of Hurmuz backing what the United States says that Iran was responsible for attacking those vessels in the Strait of Hormuz over the past month per se. Jessica?

DEAN: All right. Nic Robertson right in the middle of it all. Something to keep an eye on for sure. Thank you so much.

BRIGGS: Remember this from a few weeks ago?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you going to apologize?

BIDEN: Apologize for what?


BRIGGS: That is former vice president Joe Biden right after his controversial comments about working with segregationists Senators. He initially refused to back down but had a change of heart this weekend. And in a message delivered to him mostly black audience in South Carolina. (Inaudible) has more from the campaign trail.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Dave and Jessica, Joe Biden spent the weekend here in South Carolina making his pitch for why he should be the Democratic nominee, but the former vice president also offered a rare apology. As he said, he regrets his recent comments about working with segregationist senators, decades ago. Take a listen to what he had to tell an audience of mostly African-American voters in (inaudible) on Saturday.

BIDEN: I chose to work within the system, to make it better, to get things done for the least among us. Was I wrong to do that? I don't think so. Now was I wrong a few weeks ago to somehow give the impression to people that I was praising those men who I successfully opposed time and again? Yes, I was. I regret it. And I'm sorry for any of the pain and misconception it may have caused anybody.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Biden made those controversial comments nearly three weeks ago and he came under immediate fire from his Democratic rivals, including Cory Booker, who had called on him to apologize. And Senator Kamala Harris, who raised this issue saying that she was hurt by the comments during the debate. I asked Biden why he waited nearly three weeks to issue this apology. Take a listen to what he had to tell me.

BIDEN: Well, the first opportunity I had to do it in a full some way. The fact that the matter is, that is why I chose here in South Carolina and chose an audience that in fact would be the most likely to have been offended by anything that was said.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Now, it's worth noting that Biden was actually in South Carolina a few days after he made those controversial comments. But this weekend, Biden also spent the weekend defending his record. One area where he was offering some explanation with his support of the 1994 crime bill. Which has come under scrutiny on this campaign. As some of his Democratic rivals and his critics have said that it led to an era of mass incarceration. And Biden told voters here that he takes responsibility for that bill, both for what went right with it and what went wrong. Jessica and Dave?

DEAN: (Inaudible), thank you.

Services are getting back to normal in Ridgecrest, California, after Friday's earthquake. It was the second powerful quake in as many days.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Get under the table.




This is so --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, the front door came open.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's OK. It's OK. Just hold on. Hold on. Oh, my god. This is bad, Brian.


DEAN: Ridgecrest authorities say all roads and concrete have been inspected following the 7.1 magnitude earthquake. The City's water facilities are operational and the transit system is resuming its normal schedule. New drone video shows the fault line and some damaged homes in nearby Trona, California. The quake rattled the area residents. One family even decided to sleep under a tree saying they felt it would be safer in case of another earthquake.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We thought it was safer that way, because another one is coming. And if it was worse than that one, you definitely didn't want to be in our house.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It shook so bad that I had to escape by the window. So we decided we were going to stay here and spend the night, because we were too worried that another one would come and actually damage us.


[04:15:07] DEAN: There are still concerns about more earthquakes. Geologists say a major earthquake along the San Andreas Fault is likely overdue.

BRIGGS: Wow. Frightening. OK, ahead, he has evaded serious charges in the past, but billionaire Jeffrey Epstein is facing serious new charges of alleged sex crimes involving minors. The latest ahead.


BRIGGS: An indictment against Florida base billionaire Jeffrey Epstein is expected to be unsealed today. The new charges related to alleged sex crimes involving minors. Law enforcement sources say the new charges also involve alleged sex trafficking crimes committed between 2002 and 2005 in New York and Palm Beach. CNN has reached out to Epstein's lawyer for a comment. Epstein avoided similar charges in the past by securing a non-prosecution deal with the federal government in Miami.

[04:20:02] In November the Miami Herald reported when current labor secretary Alexander Acosta was a U.S. Attorney in Florida he gave Epstein 13 months in prison for pleading guilty to two state prostitution charges that even though a federal investigation had identified 36 under age victims.

DEAN: An historic opioid trial coming to ahead in Oklahoma. Drug maker Johnson and Johnson asking the judge to toss out the case saying the company has been made scapegoat. The judge is giving both parties an hour this morning to argue their case. A court spokesman says to expect vigorous arguments akin to Fourth of July fireworks. Johnson and Johnson consistently denies any wrongdoing saying it followed the law and acted appropriately in its marketing and promotion of opioids. Oklahoma's Attorney General accuses the drug maker and its subsidiaries of costing the state billions of dollars and destroying thousands of lives.

BRIGGS: Kevin Spacey, the man accusing the actor of groping and may come face to face in a Massachusetts courtroom today. The hearing will focus on the cell phone the accuser used to text his girlfriend, even send a video during the alleged assault. Prosecutors say they downloaded data from the phone and returned it to the accuser. The judge has ruled, Spacey's defense team is entitled to examine the phone itself. But the accuser says he doesn't have it. The judge gave the accuser until Monday and said if the phone isn't found the accuser, his lawyer, and his mother must appear in court to explain on the stand. Meanwhile, the accuser has abruptly dropped a civil suit filed against Spacey last week.

DEAN: A health care for music legend Stevie Wonder, we will tell you, what's taking him off the road? That is next.


DEAN: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have released photos of their new son, Archie's christening. He was Christened Saturday in Windsor, exactly two months after he was born. The royal couple have faced criticism for keeping Archie out of the spotlight, especially after it was recently revealed British taxpayers paid about $3 million for the renovation of their new home.

BRIGGS: Music legend Stevie Wonder being sidelined for a kidney transplant.


STEVIE WONDER, SINGER: Going to have a kidney transplant in September of this year.


BRIGGS: The 69-year-old announced the operation during a concert in London Saturday just after singing his encore, superstition. Wonder says, he has a donor. Last week the Detroit Free Press reported Wonder has been battling a serious but manageable health issue touring overseas with a medical team.

DEAN: There is a $370 million pay gap, between men's and women's World Cup soccer. Is a second straight World Cup title for the American women enough to change that on the field and beyond?