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Trump's Rally In North Carolina; Thousands Of Protesters Show Their Outrage; Trump Hails "Send Her Back" Chanters As "Patriotic Crowd"; Democratic Candidates Prepare For CNN Debates In Detroit; NASA Celebrates 50 Years Since Apollo 11 Moon Landing. Aired 8-9p ET

Aired July 20, 2019 - 20:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANA CABRERA, CNN HOST: You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Ana Cabrera in New York.

And we are watching developing stories all over the world, even in space this hour. An American rapper detained overseas. The president of the United States now negotiating personally to try and get him out. People packed in the streets of Puerto Rico. They're angry but so far peaceful. They want their governor gone. And reflections from someone who has walked in space this historic day; 50 years since man set foot on the moon. My conversation with a shuttle mission specialist, Michael Massimino.

But first, President Trump still fixated, apparently, on the fallout from his rally in North Carolina this week. In particular, the disturbing moment when the crowd broke out in a loud and clear chant, aimed at an elected member of the U.S. Congress.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CROWD: Send her back. Send her back. Send her back.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CABRERA: That chant of "send her back," referring to Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, one of four House Democrats whom the president has made a point to single out recently as those who should, quote, "go back to the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came." The president first suggested that he barely heard the chants at the rally, and that he quickly moved on, neither of which is true. Then, he told reporters he was not happy with the chants and disagreed with the crowd.

But then, today, he takes another direction, tweeting, as you can see, I did nothing to lead people on, nor was I particularly happy with their chant. Just a very big and patriotic crowd. They love the USA.

So, that's the new position of the president, at least today. People who chant about kicking a Democratic Congresswoman out of the country are patriotic and who love the USA.

One of those four women of color in Congress, targeted by the president's racist tweets and comments, is New York Democratic Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. And she held a townhall on immigration in Queens today. And someone asked her if she believed the president when he said he did not egg that crowd on.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you think he led them on? He said this morning he did not lead them on.

REP. ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ (D), NEW YORK: He absolutely did. He absolutely did. He said, oh, I stopped it immediately. Roll the tape. He didn't. He, kind of, presided over the situation. He relished it. He took it in.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CABRERA: CNN's Polo Sandoval is here with us now.

Polo, you were there inside that townhall today. I know Ocasio-Cortez said this White House rhetoric about immigration is not about immigration at all.

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Immigration was front and center at this townhall. Just back from Queens, Ana, as you just mentioned here. She certainly received a warm welcome, and we think that a lot of that had to do with the controversial tweets from President Trump, that targeted not only her, but three other of her other Democratic colleagues.

What we heard today from the freshman Democratic lawmaker here, were a lot of things that we've heard before, calling for the impeachment of President Trump, calling to abolishment not just immigration and customs' enforcement, but its parent agency, the Department of Homeland Security altogether.

But then, we also heard from Ocasio-Cortez a form of looking ahead here, especially as she is expected to meet with Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. She addressed what is certainly no big secret here, which is some tensions between established Democrats and, perhaps, some of the more progressive lawmakers here.

So, I asked Ocasio-Cortez, myself, exactly what she expects to bring to the table during this expected meeting with the most powerful Democrat on the Hill, and here is what she said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OCASIO-CORTEZ: The progressive caucus is one of the largest caucuses in the Democratic Party. And so, you know, I think, overall, it's just to have a more open-ended conversation and see what we can do to come together on strategy. And, certainly, immigration, I think, is part of that conversation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SANDOVAL: And that has, really, been a source of a lot of the tension between some of the progressives, among Democrats, and some of the more established Democrats here, Ana. So, it will be interesting to see exactly what comes out of this meeting that's scheduled, hopefully in the coming days here, between Ocasio-Cortez and the speaker of the House here. Because, of course, it is certainly no big secret that her no vote on this House Border Funding Bill certainly led to a bit of tension between her fellow Democrats.

So, when asked today what she would like to see, what would potentially lead to a yes, she said she would like to see a clean spending bill that focuses, really, on the humanitarian aspects of what's happening on the southern border, and not necessarily some of the other border security provisions that Republicans would like to see in this legislation.

So, again, what we're seeing here from some of these progressives, like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the rest of her so-called squad. They certainly are digging their heels in, when it comes to some of that legislation, and any bill piece of - any other bill that comes their way. They want to just focus on the humanitarian aspects of things.

[20:05:08] CABRERA: Got it. All right, Polo Sandoval, thank you.

SANDOVAL: Thanks so much, Ana.

CABRERA: Let's speak now with Nayyera Haq. She is a Democratic strategist, and former White House senior director in the Obama administration; and CNN Political Commentator, Alice Stewart, who's a Republican strategist.

Alice, I want to start with this tweet from conservative radio host, Hugh Hewitt. He notes 'send her back' is a nativist terrible chant, also electoral suicide, he writes. There are more than 400,000 naturalized residents in Pennsylvania, with 200,000 more in Michigan. Hewitt points out that there was such a small margin by which Trump won Michigan just 11,000, Pennsylvania just 44,000 votes.

Alice, do you see the president taking that into consideration?

ALICE STEWART, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I sure hope so. I agree with you, and I've said this from the very beginning. We do not need send her back to be the new lock her up. It's completely wrong.

If we want to make this about policy and we want to make this about politics, which it is, then, let's say, vote her out. Vote her out of office. Let's have a debate on the policies where we disagree, because they are big and they are stark and they are important. And let's look at those issues, as opposed to the -- what we're getting sidetracked with.

Because the president has mentioned this, repeatedly, and this is where we need to put the focus, on the differences in the Democratic Party and the Republican Party, which the four Congresswomen are now really leading the Democratic Party. And we need to have conversations on where they are far to the left on socialism, on green new deal, on Medicare for all, on free college tuition. Let's have a conversation about those policies and that will get us back on track.

CABRERA: Well, those four women aren't necessarily leading the Democratic Party, although the president would like to make them out to be leaders of the Democratic Party.

They do have influence, though, Nayyera. I'm wondering if Democrats are paying enough attention to possible traction Trump may be getting with his criticism of the squad, even though he's misquoting them. And he's spreading obviously racist tropes. Could he be firing up his base? And, at the same time, planting some doubts with, perhaps, moderate Democrats to make this a winning strategy?

HAQ: Well, Donald Trump has done a very effective job of conflating two different things. We have a - on one hand, the cultural history of the United States that we're still wrestling with, when it comes to understanding racism and what the modern forms of racism are, systemic racism and social justice movements. And he's conflating that with a 270 Electoral College vote strategy.

The combination of the two, as we see, is bringing out some very ugly things in the United States. And, unfortunately, it's not just up to Democrats, registered Democrats or even the candidates to solve that problem. That is a day to day, in our own communities, how do we deal with the people who are saying, send her back, to average citizens on the street or people on the street who are contributing members of American society.

Now, Michelle Obama became famous during the Trump campaign for a particular moment in which she said, when they go low, we go high. Is that tone going to prevail? Certainly, the Democratic primary candidates are offering a variety of positive visions for America. But they're not really being met with much on the Republican side of the aisle. You only had four Republicans who voted to condemn Donald Trump's tweet. So, that unfortunately is setting it up where Democrats are now the party of rational, reasonable, you know, American ideology and a variety throughout the spectrum of American ideology. And the Republicans in office right now are the nativists. They're turning out to be the racist party.

CABRERA: Before you respond, Alice, let me get back to Nayyera for just a minute, because there is a break between Nancy Pelosi and the squad. We had seen all of the back and forth between those two in public prior to the president's racist tweets. We know now AOC is set to meet with Nancy Pelosi in this next week. How do you see that's going? Because Pelosi has tended to downplay the influence of these four Congresswomen. Does she need to be careful here?

HAQ: Pelosi was actually the original progressive. So, I worked for her back in the day when she first became leader. And I'm a millennial, so I understand the gap that they're trying to bridge right now.

Pelosi was one of the first people to come out for gay rights. She's always identified as a progressive, when it comes to social justice issues. What she is trying to wrangle now is that you have the squad who are calling for impeachment, but only about 90 people in her coalition have officially come out for it. That's still 200-something votes that they have to come together from districts that are kind of purple. They're not entirely blue yet. So, that's a matter of strategy.

And I appreciate that AOC mentioned that they're going to work on that together. And it's probably better that this is coming out now, rather than in the general election.

CABRERA: Alice, I want to look at a tweet from this morning. The president quoted a woman named Katie Hopkins, who proposed a campaign slogan for him, don't love it, leave it. Katie Hawkins is a right- wing British commentator, who has said the synagogue's rabbi was the person to blame for the synagogue massacre in Pittsburgh, because of what she called his support for mass migration. She's called for a final solution for Muslims in the U.K.

[20:10:02] Alice, as the president continues to say these people are anti-Semitic and he talks about Israel being part of the conversation, how can he expect to be taken seriously on claims of defending against anti-Semitism if he's quoting this kind of person who has rhetoric like this?

STEWART: That's actually a great question. Because when he is talking about the four Congresswomen and their anti-Semitic, and some anti-American immigration policy statements, he's factually accurate on that. I can go down the list between the four of them.

CABRERA: He hasn't been factually accurate in a lot of those statements. I mean, that's the truth.

STEWART: But between the four of them, they have - they have made comments to the effect of Americans who support Israel are all about the Benjamins. They have said that Israel, the people of Israel, hypnotize Americans. They have said that our detention camps are like concentration camps. They have said that brown and black people that are supportive of our immigration policies are a cog in the system. Those kind of comments are what the president is talking about.

So, for anyone to say he is taking -

CABRERA: But why muddy the water with other things that aren't true? I mean, some of those that you listed are things that they have said. Some of them have apologized for some of those things. But the president keeps throwing additional things in there that aren't true and that are even more extreme. So, I just want to make that clear for our viewers, so that they aren't confused, Alice. But finish your thought.

STEWART: No, you're right. It would be helpful if we would stay on using the factual statements that they have used, when we're having those conversations. Because there are - there is plenty to choose from here. And we cannot continue to talk about what the president has said and what people talk about what he has said without mentioning the origin of this and where this comes from.

And I think we can all take a page out of Ronald Reagan's playbook, thou shalt not speak ill of another Republican. And same thing with the Democrats. Let's cool the temperatures. Let's lower the temperature, and let's have a better tone.

I agree, certainly, with what Nayyera said about Michelle Obama, when they go low, we go high.

HAQ: But there's something -

STEWART: I think both sides should do that.

HAQ: -- there's something very fundamental going on here that we haven't really seen in recent American history. And that is that it used to be, even on the conservative side of the aisle, and particularly among our veterans and military folks. They would say, I disagree with what you're saying but I will fight for your right to say it. A patriotic chant used to be, USA. It was not, send her back.

CABRERA: Right.

HAQ: This nativist tone that Donald Trump is picking up, he is indeed picking up from other parts of the world, like the Brexit folks, like the folks in Germany -

CABRERA: OK.

HAQ: -- who are trying to overturn liberal democracy.

CABRERA: Nayyera Haq and Alice Stewart, ladies, thank you very much.

STEWART: Thanks, Ana.

CABRERA: President Trump is coming to the defense of a rapper detained in Sweden. Why he's promising to guarantee bail and why his request has hit a sour note with Sweden's prime minister.

Plus this, a messaging scandal igniting protests in Puerto Rico. Thousands hit the streets, including a presidential candidate.

You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM.

[20:12:55]

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CABRERA: The detention of an American rapper in Sweden amid assault accusations now has the direct involvement of President Trump. CNN's David Culver gets us caught up on all the diplomatic and political maneuvering underway to win the rapper's release.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): With all the pressing matters U.S. President Donald Trump has on his foreign policy agenda right now, including rising tensions with Iran and North Korea, he's also using his political sway for this. DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The situation in

Sweden.

CULVER: The situation in Sweden that the president refers to involves jailed American rapper and music producer, Rakim Mayers, who goes by ASAP Rocky.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I personally don't know ASAP Rocky. But I can tell you that he has tremendous support from the African-American community in this country.

CULVER: ASAP's more than 10 million Instagram followers have not heard from him for nearly three weeks now. The Grammy-nominated artist is in custody in Stockholm. Swedish authorities detained him on suspicion of assault in connection with a brawl on June 30th. This edited video, posted by TMZ, appears to show ASAP in a confrontation in June. But additional edited videos uploaded onto ASAP's Instagram paint a different story.

RAKIM MAYERS, AMERICAN RAPPER: Look, just for the cameras, we don't want no problems with these boys. They keep following me. Look at them. They keep following me.

CULVER: ASAP telling his fans that these men kept following him and harassing him and his entourage, even alleging they threw headphones at his bodyguard. The Stockholm district court decided Friday that ASAP Rocky should stay in custody until July 25th as the prosecutor continues to investigate, claiming that he is a flight risk. The rapper's lawyer says the court's decision was expected but unfair, according to a report from Reuters. The lawyer says his client, quote, "believes he was assaulted and has acted in self-defense."

President Trump tweeting Saturday that he called Sweden's prime minister and told him that ASAP, quote, "was not a flight risk and offered to personally vouch for his bail." Despite the Scandinavian country not having a bail system. It's earned the president praise from some celebrities. Kim Kardashian thanking Trump for helping ASAP and his commitment to justice reform. Singer Justin Bieber weighing in, too, tweeting to the president, I appreciate you trying to help him but while you're at it, can you also let those kids out of cages? A reference to the migrant crisis along the U.S.-Mexico border.

CULVER (on camera): As for how Sweden's leader is responding. Through a spokesman, the prime minister acknowledged that he spoke to President Trump. He characterized it as a friendly and respectful 20- minute phone call Saturday. But telling the president that his government neither can nor will try to influence the judicial process, with respect to ASAP Rocky's case. Both sides say they will likely talk further on the matter in coming days.

David Culver, CNN, London.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CABRERA: I want to talk about the legal challenges of this case. Areva Martin is a civil rights' attorney and a CNN Legal Analyst. Areva, President Trump intervening, telling the leader of a foreign country he'd vouch for the rapper's bail. What do you see as the biggest obstacles here, including that Sweden doesn't have bail?

[20:20:00] AREVA MARTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Well, that's correct, Ana, they don't have a bail system. But, also, the prime minister has made it very clear that he doesn't have the ability or the authority to intervene in this matter. That the law enforcement process in Sweden has to play itself out. And barring, you know, some extraordinary circumstances, ASAP Rocky appears to be -- going to be detained in Sweden until July 25th, as the Swedish government has - or the Swedish judicial process has made clear.

CABRERA: What impact, if any, will the video, showing ASAP Rocky apparently throwing one of these guys to the ground, have on this case?

MARTIN: Well, we know that his attorney is claiming that he was simply defending himself. That these men had been following him and his entourage. And that they were the initial aggressors and that he simply was acting out of self-defense. Now, presumably, he'll have an opportunity to present that evidence to law enforcement in Sweden. And maybe that will have some impact on his ability to be let out of detention come July 25th. But it's not clear because from what we're hearing, this investigation is ongoing and no determination has been made by law enforcement in Sweden.

CABRERA: Are you surprised that the president is getting involved in this?

MARTIN: I'm surprised. And I wish the president would get involved in matters that concern the African-American community, like, you know, higher wages, health care, and other issues that impact our community. Clearly, he's been influenced by his pal, Kanye West, and other high-profile individuals.

You know, there are some issues here that concern me. G-Eazy is a white rapper who said he was arrested in Sweden on drug charges and that he was able to negotiate his release within 24 hours. He, himself, says he believes that ASAP Rocky is being held in detention and treated differently, because he's African-American. And that G- Eazy who's a white rapper was treated differently.

Now, clearly, if that's what's happening, that's of concern. And not just to me, as an African-American, but I think all people should be concerned when anyone, you know, is being treated differently because of their race.

But, clearly, the president has a lot, domestically, that we would like to see, I think as Americans, him focus his attention on. So, it is a little surprising that he would make a 20-minute phone call to a foreign prime minister to talk about a rapper that seems to be represented by counsel and, hopefully, will have this matter go away pretty quickly, if he was, in fact, defending himself, as his lawyer has stated.

CABRERA: All right, Areva Martin, good to have you with us. Always appreciate it.

MARTIN: Thanks, Ana.

CABRERA: Thousands of protesters hit the streets in Puerto Rico. This was the scene outside the governor's mansion. The message they're sending him, just ahead in the CNN Newsroom.

[20:22:35]

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CABRERA: Puerto Rico's embattled Governor Ricardo Rossello issuing a statement today, denying accusations of questionable bank accounts. Local news outlets claiming Rossello was paid generously for island's legislature for access to his father, a former governor, and kept up to $1 million in bank accounts.

And all this happening as thousands of protesters show their outrage on the streets of Puerto Rico. They want the governor to resign over several issues, including leaked private chat messages. They're furious over these messages, some of which are homophobic, disparage women, speak lightly of the deaths of Hurricane Maria victims and insult journalists and opponents.

CNN's Nick Paton Walsh is in San Juan. Nick, I can't believe it's still going. You've been there for hours, and they are not letting up. What are you hearing from protesters there on the streets?

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Simply one absolute constant demand and that is Governor Rossello resign. Now, his response to these protests that have been pretty much going on for five, six days now, and, really, what's, sort of, at some degree, kind of inspired by the leak of those chat messages.

They really (INAUDIBLE) that made everybody, I think, perhaps, more politically conscious of what they fear has been the corruption and mismanagement of Puerto Rico for decades. Governor Rossello's response has been: I heard you, but I'm not going anywhere. I think I can get your confidence back.

And, really, the gulf (ph) between these demands and what he said today, denying yet further allegations, being he seemed personally upset that they were, in fact, made, was exposed by how his press secretary, in fact, during similar scenes yesterday evening resigned. (INAUDIBLE) further saying she could no longer suffer (ph) the shame of being accused of corruption in front of her son. That was the reason she gave in a letter.

And now, we're seeing outside of Puerto Rico a growing number of voices, particularly from Democratic presidential candidates, saying they believe he should resign as well. Folks (INAUDIBLE) were saying that earlier on just today. She's joined by, you know, growing, more or less, to most of the people applying for that particular presidential candidacy.

The question is what would come next? That's a little more complicated. Because any successor, if Governor Rossello did resign, would hail from the same political lead that everyone here is quite so furious about.

But all eyes really, Ana, are on Monday. These protests are small, no doubt about it. They're noisy. They're dedicated. They're profane sometimes. We'd have to apologize. If you speak Spanish, some of the signs you may see behind me here. They're imaginative. They're young at times. They're diverse. But they don't have the numbers that the organizers hoped they might see out on the streets on Monday. That's when they say they may get a million people out to paralyze key highways in San Juan.

Ana, I have to tell you, this is mostly musical. It's loud. We've had brief moments this evening where, in fact, protesters have tried to give speeches. But they're lacking one thing and that's a leader, really. And, at this point, I think it's hard to know, unless Governor Rossello really decides to step away from the political lead (ph), how this protest movement will be able to negotiate his downfall -- Ana.

CABRERA: OK. Nick Paton Walsh, thank you for that update, your ongoing reporting there, please stay safe.

President Trump says the people at his rally who chanted 'send her back' are patriots. But some say that chant was a big warning sign. We'll break it down, next.

We're live in the CNN NEWSROOM.

[20:29:45]

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[20:30:19] CABRERA: We're monitoring escalating tensions in the Persian Gulf. Today, Iran posting this video showing the exact moment members of the Iranian navy seized a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz.

The video also shows masked men on board a helicopter. Then it shows them descending onto the deck of the British tanker, Stena Impero. Britain's foreign secretary warning, there will be, "Serious consequences" for what he calls this tit for tat situation.

And this afternoon, Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, saying, these are not the actions of a country that looks like it's headed in the right direction.

"Patriotic crowd," that's how President Trump, this morning, described his rally goers in North Carolina that chanted, "send her back," referring to freshman Democratic Congresswoman, Ilhan Omar.

And it's not just the media that paid attention to these chants and see some troublesome historical trademarks.

Jason Stanley teaches philosophy at Yale University. He's also the author of how of "How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us and Them." Jason, good to have you with us. You called that chant, "The face of evil." I want to read the definition of fascism for our viewers. This is from Miriam Webster. "A political philosophy, movement, or regime that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation and forcible suppression of opposition."

Jason, are you seeing fascist behavior in this political climate?

JASON STANLEY, PROFESSOR, YALE UNIVERSITY: I'm seeing -- fascism is a continuum. So, you know, we're sliding in that direction without a doubt. If you break down "send her back" and "send them back," what's going on there?

[20:35:03] Well, what's going on is that there's an assumption that non-white members -- American citizens, are -- have a -- their natural home is not here because they're non-white. He wouldn't say that about someone from Norwegian extraction, "they should go back home." So that's white nationalism. That's the racial nationalism.

Then you have the idea that those who disagree with the president should have their citizenship stripped from them, because they have political disagreements with the president. That's authoritarianism. When you have authoritarianism and ethno-nationalism together, well, we are strongly heading towards the direction of fascism.

CABRERA: You told Newsweek that President Trump was demonstrating a, "deep-seated commitment to fascism." What other signs would you point to, to call it deep-seated?

STANLEY: Well, first of all, I think that we have this in our history. The America first movement was an explicitly ethno- nationalist movement, Charles Lindbergh, called for keeping non-whites out of the country and allying with white European countries. And the president has named his movement the America first movement. So there are historical resonances with American -- an American fascism, past.

But the orienting your administration around immigration, so fascist movements, Oswald Mosley, the -- head of the British fascist movement, his motto was Britain for the British.

So fascist movements, all across the world, orient themselves around purity, the danger of the foreigner, the purity of the culture.

Now, of course, nationalist, there's -- of course, you could argue that there are nationalist movements that fall short of fascism, and I would agree with that.

But when you add on to that, the kind of cruelty that we're seeing at the border, and the kind of association of nationalism with whiteness, as well as the authoritarian element, the idea that if you don't agree with him, you're not American.

And when you talk about stripping citizenship of people -- from people, we're talking about something that has a -- has a very problematic history to say the least. The Nuremberg Laws, my father lost his citizenship because he was a German Jew, and living in Berlin.

So having categories of people, threatening to -- threaten their citizenship, is a move we should never endorse as Americans.

CABRERA: And I don't know if the president of the United States has necessarily threatened to remove anybody's citizenship. But I hear what you're saying. Would you classify the president as a fascist?

STANLEY: No. I think that he's playing with fascist tactics and ideology because they work, because they're an effective political strategy. Our own history shows that. Hitler was influenced by the 1924 Immigration Act that banned -- essentially banned non-white immigration from the United States.

So we have -- he was influenced by the Nuremberg Laws were based in part on our anti- miscegenation laws. So we're not -- we're not immune by any means from this ideology. And the president is playing with this ideology, he's playing with it, I assume for -- perhaps he's attracted to it. I think certain members of his administration such -- are ethno-nationalists, and they need to be called out as such.

I think -- with fascism, liberal democracy bases itself around mutual respect for all human dignity, a Christian value. Fascism bases itself around cruelty and fear of the other, and raising walls and getting people's identity to be formed with fear of others.

And so I think that's very much the kind of politics we're seeing. So we're seeing a fascist politics. The president is not -- is not doing an enabling act. The president is not -- is not -- is not threatening our democracy in ways that Mussolini or Hitler did. But he is leaning hard into an ideology that is deeply anti-democratic.

CABRERA: All right. Jason Stanley, really appreciate you shedding some light. Thanks for being here.

STANLEY: Thank you.

CABRERA: There's a very crowded field of candidates looking to replace President Trump. And they'll come together over two nights on CNN, in 10 days ahead. Some of the most awkward moments from the crowded debate stage. You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[20:40:39] CABRERA: We now know who will face off in CNN's two-night democratic presidential debates.

First, on Tuesday, July 30th. We'll see the two top progressives share a stage for the first time, Senator Bernie Sanders and Senator Elizabeth Warren. Night two, Wednesday, July 31st. We'll see former vice president, Joe Biden, sandwiched between Senators Kamala Harris and Cory Booker. Biden seems to be embracing his spot on the stage.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're going to be standing in between Cory Booker and Kamala Harris. Do you expect to be the target of this debate or those candidates and others on the stage?

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm always the target in that. As long as you're leading, you're the target. But I'm looking forward to it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CABRERA: And as we saw in the first round of debates, things on stage can get crowded, awkward and chaotic.

Here's Jeanne Moos.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEANNE MOOS, CNN NATIONAL NEWS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): With these many candidates --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The point and wave.

MOOS: -- it's half debate, half cattle call. Remember how just getting the herd onstage after Ben Carson missed his cue caused a backup with the stage hand desperately waving for Carson to go. They talk at the same time. Occasionally, invade each other's space, and pretend to be friendly.

With 10 candidates at a time, it can feel like an episode of "Veep."

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Let's turn our attention to foreign policy, Congressman Ryan.

[20:45:02] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bring it on.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your question is about Africa.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pass.

MOOS: A real candidate can't pass up a chance to look over --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Marco, the thing is this --

MOSS: -- and land a body blow.

SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R-FL): He doesn't know what he's doing. It's just not true.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There it is. There it is. The memorized 25- second speech.

MOOS: Eyeing your opponent as you lower the boom.

SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D-CA): And that little girl was me.

MOOS: Dominating the conversation. JEB BUSH (R), FORMER GOVERNOR OF FLORIDA: Property from an elderly woman --

TRUMP: Let me talk. Quiet. A lot of times --

MOOS: Hoping to score that viral moment even unwittingly. But Beto O'Rourke broke into Spanish.

MOOS (on camera): But in the end, it doesn't really matter who's standing next to whom, thanks to the split screen.

MOOS (voice-over): With the camera watching your every facial twitch.

BUSH: But he's a chaos candidate.

MOOS: Making chaotic faces.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said he wouldn't want, "such a hot head with his finger on the nuclear codes."

MOOS: If you're one of the Democrats trying to break out of the pack, be careful what you wish for. You might end up alone on that stage with President Trump lurking behind you as Hillary Clinton described it.

HILLARY CLINTON (D), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: My skin crawled.

MOOS: Even though he stayed in his assigned space, she says she felt like saying --

CLINTON: Back up, you creep.

MOOS: Now, that's enough to make you yearn for the days of the cattle call.

(MUSIC)

Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.

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CABRERA: If you need a break from reality, tune in tomorrow night. We have a brand-new episode of the CNN Original Series, "THE MOVIES," taking us back to the early 2000s with films that offered audiences an escape, including this fantasy drama from 2006. Remember this?

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APRIL WOLFE, COLUMNIST, FILM COMMENT: "Pan's Labyrinth" took people by storm because if they weren't interested in horror, they may not have known what Guillermo del Toro was doing. This is a movie that combines his fascination with horror and puts it with fairy tale. So it becomes a really accessible, mainstream movie that also has these very dark, fantastical elements that he's been working on for years.

DOUG JONES, AMERICAN ACTOR: The universal monsters, of course, are cinema history and so much inspiration from when he does comes from those old movies.

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CABRERA: The latest edition of "THE MOVIES" airs tomorrow night at 9:00 Eastern right here on CNN.

Coming up, marking 50 years since the mission that made us marvel at the skies above us.

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NEIL ARMSTRONG, AMERICAN ASTRONAUT: That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.

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[20:50:57] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Contact light. OK. Engine stop. APA at a descent (INAUDIBLE) descent engine command override off. Engine arm off. 413 is in. We copy you down, eagle.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Houston, tranquility base here. The eagle has landed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Roger, tranquility. We copy you on the ground. You got a bunch of guys about to turn blue. We're breathing again. Thanks a lot.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CABRERA: On this night, 50 years ago, millions around the world sat glued to their TV screens awaiting this historic moment beamed back from the surface of the moon.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ARMSTRONG: That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.

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CABRERA: Anyone with even a passing knowledge of history knows those words by heart, right? But a lot of people are at the Johnson Space Center in Houston today to commemorate the men and the mission of Apollo 11.

Now, the fact is, that moment still inspires us. And it still sends a chill up the spine of anyone who was alive and watching that grainy footage live on that hot July night 50 years ago, either from mission control or their living room.

A little boy named Mike who was just 6 years old that night. Almost 40 years later, Astro Mike sent the first tweet from space on May 12th, 2009, writing, "From orbit, launch was awesome. I am feeling great, working hard, and enjoying the magnificent views, the adventure of a lifetime has begun.

Astro Mike is former NASA astronaut, Michael Massimino. I know. You probably know him from "The Big Bang Theory." Great to have you with us.

MICHAEL MASSIMINO, FORMER NASA ASTRONAUT: Oh, great, great to be here. And thanks for mentioning the tweet. I think it does fail in comparison to one giant -- one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.

CABRERA: Oh, hey, don't downplay your accomplishments.

MASSIMINO: I did the best I could. Thank you, thank you. I did the best I could.

CABRERA: I know you've said it's all because of Apollo 11 that you actually wanted, you're inspired to become an astronaut.

MASSIMINO: Yes.

CABRERA: You're just 6 years old, a kid in Long Island, when this moment took place when Neil Armstrong took those first steps. Describe what it was like to watch that moment.

MASSIMINO: It was really magical for me. And it was a big moment for the whole world, as you said, millions -- not just in our country, but around the world who were watching. But I got a -- I kind of got the sense to me it meant a little more than it did to others. It really touched me deep down in my heart and my soul.

I thought what they were doing was very important, the coolest thing that anyone could do, the exploration they were doing. And I thought that the men, themselves, the people, those guys, were my idols. I wanted to grow up to be like them.

CABRERA: Let's just talk about your personal story for a moment. Because I read about it and was so inspired by you.

MASSIMINO: Thank you.

CABRERA: I mean, you are a true testament to that never give up slogan to, you know, tenacity, and you lived it. You are proof that it pays off to really go after that dream and never give up. You tried three times and were rejected before you were --

MASSIMINO: That's right.

CABRERA: -- accepted by NASA, right?

[20:55:06] MASSIMINO: Yes, on the fourth try is when -- is when I got accepted. And, yes. I think -- I think kind of the important thing for me was to just try. And it was when I was really honest with myself about that dream I had. And I was a little boy and that dream was formed. Kind of forgot about it as I was growing up and it wasn't until after graduating college I've decided to try to pursue it. And that's when I was really honest with myself, I really thought about, what do I really want to do? What do I really want to be a part of? The space program was the answer. And wanted to be an astronaut. More than just be a part of it, but I also wanted to try at least to be an astronaut.

And the only way that that happens is if you -- if you don't -- you don't give up. The successful people I've met are not those that never failed, that those that never let failure stop them. And if you have a dream that you're pursuing, it's important not to give it up on it, especially if it's only the first couple tries. You got to keep that equal.

CABRERA: Very quickly, if you will. Do you think we'll make it to Mars?

MASSIMINO: Eventually, yes. I think it's onto Mars eventually. Obviously, we're going to get there, I think, some point. I think maybe going to the moon to settle there not just for a visit, but now 50 years later going back there, staying there, and using it is a platform to go to Mars.

But certainly, I do think we'll be getting there at some point.

CABRERA: Our thanks to Michael Massimino.

This is a live look now at Neil Armstrong's space suit at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington. The museum is planning a special balloon drop for 10:56 Eastern Time tonight. The very minute Neil Armstrong stepped foot on the moon.

That does it for me. I'm Ana Cabrera. Thanks for being here. The award winning film "APOLLO 11" airs next.

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