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Justice Department Discourages Testifying; New York Holds Parade for World Cup Champs; U.S. Ambassador Resigns. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired July 10, 2019 - 08:30   ET


[08:30:00] JIM BAKER, FORMER FBI GENERAL COUNSEL: Apparently behind closed doors, or that was the plan. And so I think they should try to go forward. They're private citizens now. I don't think that the administration can actually stop them from -- from doing this. And I think they have an obligation to -- to talk to Congress because Congress has legitimate questions that still need to be answered.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Questions about the Mueller report, yet there's all kinds of reporting that even members of Congress have not even read it. "Politico" did a really interesting story with quotes from sitting members about whether they've read the Mueller report.

Tim Scott, the senator, says, what's the point? Senator Lisa Murkowski says, its tedious. Senator James Lankford says, have I read every single page? No. Senator Tim Kaine says, I didn't have to read it, I lived it. And Colin Peterson says, I need to spend some more time with it.

What does it tell you if the people in Congress still haven't read the report?

BAKER: Well it's disappointing to say the least. I mean I think they're failing us. They -- they are our representatives. They are the representatives of the people. And I think they have a solemn obligation to read that report. What else are they doing out there that's more important? I mean that's just it. I just see it as a failure of leadership on their -- on their part and I think, you know, the American people should be out there calling their representatives, and calling their offices and asking them whether they've read the report and hold them accountable if -- if they haven't done it. I think it's just a dereliction of duty. And I -- any member of Congress that shows up at those hearings next week on those committees who hasn't read the report I think should be, quite frankly, ashamed of themselves.

BERMAN: I want to ask you about some developing news, because we're getting new details about the inspector general investigation, this is Michael Horowitz, who is investigating aspects of the Russia investigation, including the FISA applications on Carter Page. And also we are now learning asking questions to Christopher Steele, who wrote the dossier, and about how he came to contact the FBI.

First of all, I should ask you, have you testified before the inspector general?

BAKER: So I have agreed to cooperate with the inspector general. They do it in the forms of interviews. But, yes, I -- I've been interviewed, but I --

BERMAN: You have been interviewed?

BAKER: Yes, I have been.


Christopher Steele apparently told "The New York Times" that he was asked -- or "The New York Times" reports that Christopher Steele was asked whether the bureau was overly reliant on the Russian expertise of outsiders like him. Mr. Steele told them he believed the FBI probably was underequipped to judge the inherently murky intelligence he was relaying.

You were there. Were you ill-equipped to deal with that?

BAKER: Well, I certainly didn't think so and I didn't think that the team was ill-equipped to deal with that. I -- the FBI had very serious counter intelligence experts, experts in Russia on staff, you know, dealing with Christopher Steele. I mean I don't want to comment too much on about it -- too much about it, but, you know, it was a challenge. And his reporting was coming from a lot of different sources and sub sources, and it was challenging to analyze. But the difficulty in analyzing something doesn't mean that the people who are trying to analyzing it were ill-equipped to do so.

BERMAN: Also "The New York Times" reports that Horowitz, the inspector general, is scrutinizing whether law enforcement officials adequately took into account new information as they sought to renew the wiretap. This is the FISA warrant. It is not clear, for example, when the FBI figured out for certain that the Democratic Party and the Clinton campaign had funded Mr. Steele's research. Investigators never updated the language describing his research in three renewal applications.

Should you have all updated that language?

BAKER: Well, the -- so I don't know what exactly the inspector general has found, and I don't want to comment on what it is that I've -- I've discussed or have been asked.

But, look, I mean, in any investigation, information is coming in and you learn new things as the investigation proceeds. Starting an investigation is like asking a question and you learn as you go. And so the idea is that you need to have in place processes so that as new information is acquired by the organization, by the FBI, from various sources, that information makes its way to the people that need to know about it. Whether information was learned somewhere in the bureau and then it didn't make its way to the top and to the people that are actually dealing with the FISA, I don't know. We'll have to wait for the inspector general report to come out.

I expect them to do a thorough job. They're professionals. They'll get to the bottom of it. But, you know, the fact that things might not have made its way to certain other people in the -- in the organization is not the first time that that would have happened.

BERMAN: Jim Baker, always very educational to get a chance to speak with you. Please come back. We'll have a lot more to talk about as soon as next week when Robert Mueller testifies before Congress. At least he's scheduled to.

Thanks so much, Jim.

BAKER: Thank you, John.

BERMAN: Let's go to Alisyn Camerota on the parade route.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: John, I've made it here to city hall. This is the end of the parade route. This is where Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City will honor and welcome all the soccer stars. And we will be talking to the New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio when we come right back on NEW DAY.


[08:38:57] CAMEROTA: OK, welcome back to NEW DAY, everyone. I am here at city hall. This is the end point of the parade where our U.S. soccer stars will be welcomed and honored by the mayor of New York City, Bill de Blasio, who joins me now.

What an exciting day, Mr. Mayor.

MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO, NEW YORK CITY: Alisyn, it's amazing. Our champions are back. We did this four years ago. The whole city and the whole country came out to show our love and our support for our champions. And I've got to tell you, for women and girls all over America, this is a very important moment.

CAMEROTA: Let's talk about that because, I mean, obviously a ticker tape parade is huge in New York and you reserve it for the biggest heroes. I mean global heroes, as well as athletic superstars. Nelson Mandela was honored with a ticker tape parade when he was released from jail in 1990. And so what does this mean to New York and the world today?

DE BLASIO: It's an act of fairness. Alisyn, for most of a century, when you thought about the canyon and the heroes and the ticker tape parades, it was pretty much reserved for men. And now, two times in four years, our women, our champions being honored on the highest pedestal in the nation. And it's sending a message that we've got a lot of change -- we -- change to do and we're making change. It's actually a very hopeful sign about this country. But I've got to tell you, we've got to go a lot farther. And Megan Rapinoe has said this so clearly.

[08:40:11] This also has to be a moment we finally break through on pay equity. And this country's lagging far behind. The fact that our women are paid so much less than men, they're champions, they bring in a huge amount of revenue for U.S. Soccer. So let me say, it's time to change that.

I'll tell you what I would do, and you know I'm running for president.


DE BLASIO: If I were president of the United States, I would insist that Congress pass an amendment to the Amateur Sports Act requiring -- requiring equal pay for men and women in all of our national sports teams. And if they didn't do it, I'd use an executive order to have the Treasury Department enforce on the U.S. Soccer Federation because they're tax-exempt and they're discriminating in effect against women in pay. That should be stopped through the Treasury Department's power. I would do that as president through executive order. And the last thing I'd do is the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would solve this problem all over the country, end the question of salary history being asked, require companies and institutions to report on their salaries --

CAMEROTA: In other words, transparency. So you would be looking for transparency.

DE BLASIO: Transparency and enforcement.

CAMEROTA: I mean I think that the first thing that President Obama did was the Lilly Ledbetter Act. And so we've been making steps towards this.


CAMEROTA: But as Megan Rapinoe and the entire team has pointed out, we're not there yet.

DE BLASIO: Oh, it's obvious.

CAMEROTA: Yes. and So -- I mean what -- their win, as impressive as it was athletically, stands for so much here. And they just sort of saw their moment and their opportunity and have stepped into it.

DE BLASIO: Alisyn, they're heroes in more than one way. These women are not just heroes on the field, they're -- they're leading a discussion in America and they're demanding change we need. And so many women who are responsible more and more for the economic destiny of their families, you know, so many women are suffering from pay inequality. It doesn't have to be that way.

This is one of the most glaring examples. I mean the women's team won. God bless the men, but the women's team won.

CAMEROTA: And they get higher ratings than the men.


CAMEROTA: And they bring in more revenue, as you pointed out.

DE BLASIO: More revenue. But this needs -- look, we're changing hearts and minds. And that team is changing hearts and minds. I hope this parade will help people to really feel equality. But let's put our money where our mouth is. And the actions I'm discussing would actually put money in the hands of women.

CAMEROTA: But are you sensing resistance to this? I mean I know that you say it's long overdue, but do you think that as president you would have to prod Congress?

DE BLASIO: Oh, yes. Oh, yes. Congress could have done this a long time ago. I mean, come on, this is not the first time the issue came up with our soccer teams or our society as a whole. Congress has to act. Again, executive action if they won't.

But here's the -- the big piece, the Paycheck Fairness Act. We banned the question of salary history here in New York because it was hurting women. It was being used as a tool, sometimes inadvertently, sometimes purposely, to say, well, if you only made that much in the past, well then we're going to peg your salary lower. But that was based on discrimination against women in the past, so it was keeping a bad situation bad.

We banned the question of asking salary history. Now the question is only, what do we need to pay you to get you to work here? That equalizes men and women.

CAMEROTA: What do you think about the fight, the public fight, President Trump and Megan Rapinoe and some of the other stars have had? You know the women have said that they wouldn't go to the White House.


CAMEROTA: Some of the most high profile women on the team have said that they wouldn't go. And it wasn't a team statement necessarily. But is that the right answer, not go to the white House? What a lifetime of an opportunity to be able to go.

DE BLASIO: Well, let's face it, the rules of the game have changed. This president has created a hyper political White House. A White House that, unfortunately, uses a platform to denigrate. A lot of women have just been offended for years by his treatment of women. And I still ask a basic question. I think we now have 14 or 15 women who have accused him of sexual harassment or assault in one form or another and there's not been a single investigation. Something's wrong with that picture.

The bottom line is that certainly athletes feel personally hurt, personally offended. And I don't blame them for not going to the White House.

And one of the things that I would do as president, and I think anybody who becomes the next president needs to do, is bring back a sense of universality to the White House. It's a place that should foster unity and respect for everyone, not hatred and division. And, in the end, if athletes who are generally not particularly political, if they feel so offended they can't go, that speaks volumes. We want to put our athletes on a pedestal where they belong, but they also have to follow their consciences. Let's go back to having the White House be a place for everyone.

CAMEROTA: I want to ask you about the breaking news this morning where the U.K. ambassador, Kim Darroch, Sir Kim Darroch, resigned really in embarrassment after these leaked cables became public where he was giving his quite unvarnished assessment about the Trump administration --


CAMEROTA: That he sort of was telling the home office he felt was inept and it wasn't going to become more normal, he felt.


CAMEROTA: He resigned do you -- because President Trump basically made him persona nongrata and didn't want to work with him after feeling insulted. What does this mean for foreign relations? What does this mean for how honest our diplomats should be?

[08:45:10] DE BLASIO: Diplomats have to be honest. Ours have to be honest with our government, whatever they're seeing in another country, the same for everybody else. We've got to work with people, whether they say something nice about us or not. And one of the things that, you know, the dictator in North Korea figured out he could stroke Donald Trump's ego and get better treatment. If that's all it takes, we're all in trouble.

In the end, we have to work with people whether we like them or not, agree with them or not, but to achieve the ends of American security and what the American people need. Britain's one of our key allies, but this is making it harder to have an alliance we need. We're going to need Britain in terms of dealing with Iran and many other realities in the world and other allies. So I think what's happened here, and this is where all Americans should be concerned is, our alliances are fraying because it's all about personality and ego, and that's dangerous for this country.

CAMEROTA: Mayor Bill De Blasio, we know you have a busy morning ahead.

DE BLASIO: A wonderful morning ahead.

CAMEROTA: It's perfect. The weather is perfect.

DE BLASIO: Isn't it. And look at the weather.

CAMEROTA: I know, the weather is ideal here.

DE BLASIO: It's going to be amazing.

CAMEROTA: And everybody's already getting into position and they're super excited. So thanks so much for taking the time for us.

DE BLASIO: Thank you, Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: We look forward to watching the parade.

John, it's really exciting down here. The music has just struck up, and the crowds are gathering.

BERMAN: I can tell, it looks and it sounds awesome. I can't wait to watch the whole parade. I know you'll be down there for the whole thing, Alisyn. Thank you very much.

We're also going to hear from World Cup star Megan Rapinoe on the fight for equal pay. That's next.

But first, how one woman fights child sex trafficking from a coffee shop in this week's "Turning Points."


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: For me, I felt like coffee is community.

There you go. Thank you.

The community wasn't something I had as a child.

My name is Tina and I am a survivor of a hit (ph) for human trafficking.

My earliest memory is at the age of four, remembering that my mom left me with the first man that I can remember. Somewhere in my teen years, I started struggling with anorexia. In my 30s I had gotten down to about 70 pounds. That was because I hadn't dealt with the trauma that had happened.

Once I started talking about it and after the treatment, I knew that instead of running from my past, that I needed to embrace it and use it to bring hope to others.

I really wanted people to feel a comfortable place that they could go, feel loved. But on top of that, I thought, how cool would it be if we could do even more by having our profits go to fight human trafficking.

So we started Palate Coffee Brewery. The person who buys our coffee is not just buying a cup of coffee. You're going to help us put that little four-year-old girl in our safe house. You're going to help us to hand over a hygiene bag to a victim that just got pulled off the street.

And I hope and pray that I will be an inspiration to show them good things are possible.



[08:52:46] CAMEROTA: OK, welcome back, everybody. Alisyn Camerota here in front of New York City's city hall where in just a short time our U.S. soccer champs are going be given the hero's welcome that they deserve with a huge ticker tape parade. They're going to be marching down Broadway right here to city hall and that's where they'll be honored and greeted by New York City's mayor, Bill de Blasio, who we just heard from.

John, people are already lining the streets. As we came down here, we could see people getting into position. It's a beautiful day here in New York. So there' so much excitement. The music is already cranked up. Eddie Grant is singing "Electric Avenue" for the champs here. So it's just -- I mean, and, obviously, as you and I have been talking about, it's so much more than just a World Cup win this year. It has come to represent so much more of what these women are talking about.

BERMAN: I think that's exactly right. And they set the bar so high for themselves, Alisyn. They got to France and they basically declared, this is more than about just winning the World Cup, which they did in incredible, convincing fashion. But they also said that we're going to take this discussion to a different level. And we know we almost have to win to make people hear us. And they did. They achieved both.

CAMEROTA: And so Megan Rapinoe has been talking, of course, about equal pay, as has all of the team. But last night she was on Anderson's show talking about why it's so important. So, let's listen to that.


MEGAN RAPINOE, U.S. WOMEN'S NATIONAL SOCCER TEAM CAPTAIN: Yes, it's so much more than the money. Obviously the money and the, you know, the compensation part is a big piece and the thing that gets talked about the most, but it's really more about the investment in the game. Is the investment equal? We're talking marketing dollars and branding and investment in youth, investment in the players, investment in the coaching staff? I don't think that that's there. I don't think that that's ever been there.

I think the men's side of sports just in general is seen as this exciting opportunity -- business opportunity that needs to be invested in. The women's is like, how cheap can we do this while, you know, sort of keeping them happy and what sort of incremental changes can we make.


CAMEROTA: John, I thought that was a really interesting point. So many people fastened on the salary and talking about, well, maybe they agreed to a contract that was lower. She described there how it's more than that. It's about resources and investment and publicity and promos and all of the other things that would tell the women, we believe in you as much as the men.

[08:55:12] John, she also talked about her message for President Trump, with whom she has been in a bit of a verbal spat with. So here's her message to him last night.


MEGAN RAPINOE, U.S. WOMEN'S NATIONAL SOCCER TEAM CAPTAIN: I think that I would say that your message is excluding people. You're excluding me. You're excluding people that look like me. You're excluding people of color. You're excluding, you know, Americans that -- that maybe support you. I think that we need to have a reckoning with the message that you have and what you're saying about make America great again. I think that you're harking back to an era that was not great for everyone.


CAMEROTA: John, it's been really interesting to listen to her own this moment. You know, there comes an opportunity and she has stepped into it and it's just hard to imagine anybody having more command of this moment.

BERMAN: And it is her moment. The moment for the entire world champions as they will take part in this parade just a short time from now.

You know what, and it's all their moments too. We're seeing just wonderful pictures of girls, also boys, but the girls who I think are standing in the crowd today saying, one day that can be us and the inspiration that they're all seeing.

CAMEROTA: Absolutely.

BERMAN: Alisyn, we're going to get back to you in just a little bit.

The big parade is just minutes away.

CNN's live, special coverage continues next.