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EARLY START

Gunman Kills Three And Wounds At Least 11 In California; President Trump Doubles Down On Attacking Black Lawmaker; The Economic State Of The 2020 Candidates. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired July 29, 2019 - 05:30   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:31:44] ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

DAVE BRIGGS, CNN ANCHOR: All right, continuing our breaking news coverage. Welcome back to EARLY START. I'm Dave Briggs.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Christine Romans. It is 31 minutes past the hour.

A family food festival in California farm country turned into a deadly scene of terror.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get down.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What's going on? What's going on? Was that fire?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get right here. Get right here. Come on.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What's going on?

(Gunshots)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh (bleep). Oh, they're shooting.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: A gunman firing round after round at the annual Garlic Festival in Gilroy. That's 80 miles south of San Francisco.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(Gunshots)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Gilroy police say three people were killed, in addition to the gunman, and at least 11 people injured.

Chief Scot Smithee telling reporters overnight that officers confronted the shooter almost immediately. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SCOT SMITHEE, POLICE CHIEF, GILROY, CALIFORNIA: Officers were in that area and engaged the suspect in less than a minute. The suspect was shot and killed. We had many, many officers in the park at the time that this occurred, as we do any day during festivals, which accounts for the very, very quick response time.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Smithee says witnesses reported a second attacker but he says it's unclear what role that person might have played.

CNN's Dan Simon is there. He's standing by for us live in Gilroy with the very latest.

Dan, what do we know about the victims?

DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, hi, Christine.

First of all, I can tell you that police are still processing the scene. Of course, it's still in the middle of the night here but we're told that they're going to be out here for many, many hours as this investigation is still in its infancy.

But in terms of the victims, we know that three people were shot dead and one of the victims includes a 6-year-old boy named Steven Romero. We're also told that his mother was also shot and she is being treated at an area hospital.

But authorities tell us that this all began at 5:40 in the evening at the tail end of this 3-day festival attended by thousands and thousands of people every year -- very popular in the area -- a food festival. Lots of live entertainment.

And authorities tell us it appears that the shooter got in through a back way. He did not go through security. That he hopped over a creek and the broke through a fence to get into the festival itself.

Witnesses -- as you can see there in the video, it was all pandemonium, they tell us. Many say that they dove under tables and did anything they could to get to safety.

This is what one woman told us as the situation was unfolding around her. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LITZY MUNGUIA, EYEWITNESS: I seen the shooter and I seen -- I seen him shooting at everyone, and it looked like he just wanted to shoot at everyone. He didn't have no direct target.

And he was wearing glasses. I cannot tell if he was making eye contact with me or not. I could just see that he was aiming at us. He shot literally from side-to-side with a gun and he didn't stop. I was probably like 30 feet away from him when the first two shots rang out. The first two shots -- I didn't -- I didn't think they were shots. It sounded like a gun marathon -- the guns from marathons where they shoot first.

And then I just heard him boom, boom, boom, boom, boom -- just shooting everywhere. And that's when we turned around and he was shooting from side-to-side. And that's when my boyfriend pushed me to the floor.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[05:35:07] SIMON: Now, the police response was unbelievably quick. Authorities say they engaged the shooter literally within one minute because police officers were here. They were providing overall security for the event. And they say they shot the shooter dead within one minute.

And they also tell us, Christine, that there may be a second suspect out there. Based on some of the witness descriptions that they heard they believe there may be an accomplice, but that's really all the details they have at this moment.

ROMANS: Yes.

SIMON: Christine.

ROMANS: Still gathering information and still processing the scene.

Dan Simon, thank you so much.

BRIGGS: All right, turning to politics now. President Trump escalating his Twitter campaign against a leading African American congressman over the weekend.

On Saturday, Trump attacked Maryland Democrat Elijah Cummings, calling his majority-black district a, quote, "disgusting, rat and rodent- infested mess." Add true (ph) accusations of racism.

On Sunday, Trump responded by calling Cummings a racist and accusing him of doing a terrible job for the people of his district.

TEXT: DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, TWITTER: There is nothing racist in stating plainly what most people already know -- that Elijah Cummings has done a terrible job for the people of his district and of Baltimore, itself. Dems always play the race card when they are unable to win with facts. Shame!

More now from CNN's Boris Sanchez at the White House.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Dave and Christine, President Trump, on Sunday, doubling down on his attacks on Congressman Elijah Cummings and his district, following up on tweets that he had previously sent on Saturday bashing the congressman, suggesting that he should pay more attention to conditions in his district than on those at migrant detention facilities along the southern border.

In one tweet on Sunday, the president calling Cummings a racist.

TEXT: DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, TWITTER: If racist Elijah Cummings would focus more of his energy on helping the good people of his district and Baltimore itself, perhaps progress could be made in fixing the mess that he has helped to create over many years of incompetent leadership. His radical "oversight" is a joke!

SANCHEZ: Now the White House is trying to spin the president's attacks and sort of polish them.

Acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney was on one of the Sunday morning talk shows suggesting that the president often does offend people with his language but that these attacks are not based on race. Mulvaney making the case that the president was trying to fact-check Cummings on his descriptions of conditions at these border facilities.

Listen to more from Mulvaney.

MICK MULVANEY, ACTING WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: The president is attacking Mr. Cummings for saying things that are not true about the border.

I think it's right for the president to raise the issue of -- look, I was in Congress for six years. If I had poverty in my district like they have in Baltimore, if I had crime in my district like they have in Chicago, if I had homelessness in my district like they have in San Francisco, and I spent all of my time in Washington, D.C. chasing down this Mueller investigation -- this bizarre impeachment crusade -- I'd get fired.

And I think that the president is right to raise that. It has absolutely zero to do with race.

SANCHEZ: Two important points here, Dave and Christine.

First, related to Congressman Cummings' description of these border facilities, they line up with what we've heard from numerous outlets -- from CNN's own reporting that the conditions at these facilities are horrendous. Secondly, if you look at the president's tweets, he doesn't actually fact-check Cummings or dispute his descriptions. Mick Mulvaney with a bit of spin there.

We should point out the president's tweets overall were inaccurate. The district that Congressman Cummings represents happens to be one of the most educated and most affluent predominantly African American districts in the country -- Dave and Christine.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ROMANS: Important to note. Thank you so much for that, Boris.

Meantime, "The Baltimore Sun" responded strongly to the president attacking its city as a "rodent-infested mess." In a scathing Sunday editorial, the paper said, quote, "Better to have some vermin living in your neighborhood than to be one."

BRIGGS: Wow.

Joining us here, Princeton professor and historian Julian Zelizer, a CNN political analyst. Good to see you, sir.

ROMANS: Hi, good morning.

JULIAN ZELIZER, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST, HISTORIAN AND PROFESSOR, PRINCETON UNIVERSITY, CO-AUTHOR, "FAULT LINES: A HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES SINCE 1974": Good morning.

BRIGGS: All right, this follows a familiar pattern. The president --

ROMANS: Yes.

BRIGGS: -- sitting around the weekend watching Fox News, sees a segment, hits Twitter. This is just like the squad -- the four congresswomen of color that he attacked.

What is the president after here? What's the goal, in your estimation?

ZELIZER: Well, that's one pattern. The other is using language of race from the presidential bully pulpit. So, part of this we have to see at this point as an expression of what he thinks and part of it's political. Part of it is this is how he appeals to the famous base that's going to be important for the election.

ROMANS: Is this a strategy? I mean, is this going to be -- from now to 2020, is this what we're going to see?

ZELIZER: Absolutely. This is what we've seen since January 2017. And it's not just the message, it's to get it into the media and it's to make this the central story as opposed to other questions.

BRIGGS: The president can say that race wasn't involved here, but there's a long list of other Democrats that have criticized conditions at the border. Just to mention a few -- Kathleen Rice, Chuck Schumer, Dick Durbin, Jeff Merkley, Ron Wyden, Chris Coons. They're all white. He did not attack them or their districts, just to point that out.

ROMANS: Yes, and I think the fact-check from Boris was really important, too. That, you know, to go after this district, in particular, is just -- it's just not correct.

I wonder -- we've heard from many of the Democrats about this. How much of Trump do you think will be on the stage for the Democrats the next couple of days? Are they focused on each other, trying to stand out with Biden --

BRIGGS: Yes.

ROMANS: -- is really the leader there.

ZELIZER: Yes, that's the tough part. But I think they really need to go after Biden, so I think he will be elevated, although Trump looms in the background of everything the candidates are saying.

This is a big opportunity in the middle of the summer for all the other candidates to try to undercut the idea that Biden is most electable. To do that, they can't only talk about President Trump. They are going to have to talk about Democratic issues and strategies, so it's a balancing act.

[05:40:12] BRIGGS: You wonder if any other candidates will pivot towards independence because Biden seems to have the clear -- occupying that lane. That is why he has that huge lead in all the polls is because he has like a 10- or 20-point lead when it comes to Independents.

We want to talk about the story with Dan Coats, DNI -- director of National Intelligence -- soon stepping down. John Ratcliffe will be nominated in his place.

And he had an audition, essentially, at the Mueller hearings and here's how Ratcliffe went after the special counsel.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. JOHN RATCLIFFE (R-TX): I agree with the chairman this morning when he said Donald Trump is not above the law -- he's not. But he damn sure shouldn't be below the law, which is where volume two of this report puts him.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: OK, here's what Chuck Schumer has to say about Ratcliffe being nominated. "It's clear that Ratcliffe was selected because he exhibited blind loyalty to President Trump with his demagogic questioning of the special counsel." Adding, "It would be a big mistake" to nominate him.

There's been a lot of departures from the Trump administration, but when you look at the commonality of these names, like McMaster, Cohn, Kelly, Mattis, Haley, and now Coats, anyone who has spoken up at all, critical of the president's policies or handling of national security, is out and replaced with not just a yes man -- someone's whose defining characteristic is defending this president and boosting him.

What is the impact on our democracy and on the administration?

ZELIZER: It's big. First, it's politicizing intelligence. This is a big development, I think, in the Trump administration and this nomination would only accelerate that.

And, yes, on a series of key issues -- Russian interference in the election, Iran, North Korea -- you're now removing Coats -- who has been only questioning the president's lying -- and replacing him with someone who is likely not only to support the president but to go out and, in some ways, demagogue whatever the position is.

And so this narrows the advice that a president is getting at a key moment going into our election. ROMANS: Especially on Russia.

ZELIZER: Right.

ROMANS: Is this -- is this a president who is surrounding himself with people who are telling him what he wants to hear?

ZELIZER: Yes, and we heard for everything in the Mueller hearings a very stark warning about what's going on in our election system. This isn't some minor hacking operation, it's a real threat. And we don't even know what other kind of threats will emerge.

And he's removed someone who is very high up in power, who is very critical of what the administration was doing. And now, we have someone from the televised interview that he essentially had during the hearings who is saying this isn't going to be a priority.

BRIGGS: Also, turned and called all the Democrats there on that committee socialists during that same line of questioning.

But he is concerned about Russian interference and he has made that clear. He's been a congressman since 2014 and a U.S. attorney before that, so he has qualifications --

ZELIZER: Yes.

BRIGGS: -- besides being a Trump cheerleader. But it should be interesting to see if he gets confirmed.

ROMANS: Yes.

BRIGGS: Julian, good to see you.

ZELIZER: Thank you.

ROMANS: Nice to see you, Julian. Thank you.

BRIGGS: All right.

The lineup is all set and the countdown is on for your CNN Democratic debates. Two big nights, 10 candidates each night. That's tomorrow night and Wednesday night, 8:00 Eastern live from Detroit, right here on CNN.

ROMANS: All right, so here's the challenge for those Democrats in 2020. How do you beat --

BRIGGS: Yes.

ROMANS: -- a president who presides over a booming economy? We're going to take a closer look at the candidates and their message, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:47:40] BRIGGS: The woman next in line to be Puerto Rico's governor does not want the job. Wanda Vazquez Garced, Puerto Rico's Secretary of Justice, tweeting she does not want to be governor of the U.S. territory, saying in Spanish that she has no interest in occupying the position.

Vazquez was next in line for the job after embattled leader Ricardo Rossello announced his resignation Wednesday.

Normally, the Secretary of State would be next in line but the man who was Secretary of State, Luis Rivera Marin, resigned amid the same group chat scandal that led to protests and Rossello's resignation.

ROMANS: All right, let's get a check on "CNN Business" this morning.

First, a look at global stocks. The Hang Seng suffered its biggest drop in a month and a half. Fears about how those protests in Hong Kong could hurt the local economy.

On Wall Street, right now, leaning slightly lower here but really undecided here. Stocks finished the week higher after Friday's second-quarter GDP report showed the economy grew at 2.1 percent. The Dow closed up 52 points. Both the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq closed at all-time highs.

This week it's all about the Fed as policymakers meet to decide on a rate cut. Investors are certain that's going to happen.

All right. As 2020 approaches, the president has the advantage of a very strong economy. For Democrats running to take his job, they have to prove otherwise.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ROMANS (voice-over): It's the economy, stupid. A strong economy is a gift for any sitting president going into an election year.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have the hottest economy anywhere on earth.

We have the number one economy in the world.

We're now the economic envy of the entire world.

ROMANS (voice-over): It's an advantage for President Trump. The lowest jobless rate in half a century, nearly three percent economic growth last year, the stock market near record highs.

But the Democratic candidates for president are asking just who is the Trump economy working for?

SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D-CA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: He has done nothing to help working families in America.

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG (D), SOUTH BEND, INDIANA, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Communities where it's as if this recovery never even happened.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Ask these people who work in this restaurant how that economy came up for them. ROMANS (voice-over): The key for Democrats in 2020, frame the Trump economy as great for big corporations and the wealthiest Americans.

HARRIS: I will repeal that tax bill that benefits the top one percent.

BIDEN: Eliminating Donald Trump's tax cuts for the wealthy.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It is Wall Street's turn to help rebuild the American middle-class.

[05:50:02] Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren want more taxes on the ultra-rich --

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: An ultra- millionaire's tax -- it's two cents on every dollar of the great fortunes above $50 million.

ROMANS (voice-over): -- crack down on Wall Street --

SANDERS: We are going to break those huge banks up.

ROMANS (voice-over): -- and rein in big tech.

WARREN: It is time to break up America's tech giants.

ROMANS (voice-over): Most of the Democratic candidates want to raise corporate taxes, tax investment profit. Some even favor putting a fee on every Wall Street trade.

HARRIS: Frankly, this economy is not working for working people.

ROMANS (voice-over): Democrats' message that in the Trump economy, income inequality is worsening. Today, the top one percent own more wealth than the bottom 90 percent combined.

Democrats propose raising the minimum wage, strengthening workers' rights, and implementing fairer housing policies.

Senator Cory Booker wants to give newborns a bond to close a racial wealth gap. The median white family in America has nearly 10 times the wealth of the median black family.

SEN. CORY BOOKER (D-NJ), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It's about time we target the creation of wealth equally for all children in America.

ROMANS (voice-over): Senator Kamala Harris wants to bring transparency to the gender pay gap --

HARRIS: Paying people for equal work equally.

ROMANS (voice-over): -- while Biden, Warren, and Sanders have plans to revitalize rural America.

BIDEN: Rural economies, which are integral for the nation's success. ROMANS (voice-over): And then there's free college, first popularized by Bernie Sanders in 2016, critical that many Americans go into debt to earn a degree.

SANDERS: Frankly, that is crazy. We want you to get the best education you can without having to pay off outrageous levels of debt.

ROMANS (voice-over): This time around all the candidates have some policy for affordable college. Most want free community college, though free college for all and canceling all debt, that's a far-left position not matched by everyone.

BUTTIGIEG: No, I'm not for free college for all.

I just don't believe it makes sense to ask working-class families to subsidize even the children of billionaires.

ROMANS (voice-over): Warren has proposed wiping out student loan debt up to $50,000 for some 42 million student debtors.

WARREN: Anyone in this country should be able to get an education without getting crushed by student loan debt.

ROMANS (voice-over): Bottom line, the Democrats say Trump's economy isn't helping all Americans. The question is can they convince voters the same.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ROMANS: You know, the president's overall approval ratings -- you know, not great by any stretch of the imagination. But when you ask people how they feel about the economy, those numbers are good and they do give President Trump credit for that.

BRIGGS: Sure.

ROMANS: So those are the poll numbers that have been consistently good for this president.

BRIGGS: And then you add in Fed rate cut --

ROMANS: Yes.

BRIGGS: -- and then you add in even a symbolic win with China, which will further juice the economy --

ROMANS: Yes.

BRIGGS: -- it's a good plan for reelection.

ROMANS: Don't worry about all those deficits and all that debt.

BRIGGS: A trillion dollars annually.

ROMANS: We'll pay -- we'll pay for that hangover later. BRIGGS: All right. Speaking of money, a 16-year-old kid just won $3 million playing a game you probably yell at your kids for playing. The Fortnite fortune, ahead.

ROMANS: Get off the couch. OK, wait.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:57:35] BRIGGS: In baseball, a pitcher typically hands the ball over to the manager when he's taken out of the game, but there is nothing typical about the Cleveland Indians Trevor Bauer.

Here's' what Bauer did when taken out -- turned and chucked that ball deep and gone over the center field wall before he was pulled in Kansas City, Sunday. Bauer had just given up seven runs in five innings.

He did apologize for his behavior after the game, calling it childish and unprofessional. He said he's an intense competitor and the frustration just built up.

ROMANS: All right, Disney just set the record for the highest- grossing year for a studio ever and it's only July.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CLIP FROM DISNEY'S "THE LION KING".

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: "The Lion King" helped Disney bring in a record $7.6 billion to date at the worldwide box office, beating the record it set in 2016. "Avengers: Endgame", "Captain Marvel", and "Aladdin" have made more than $1 billion this year.

BRIGGS: Speaking of money, a $3 million grand prize and the new Fortnite champ Kyle "Bugha" Geirsdorf.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FORTNITE CHAMPIONSHIP ANNOUNCER: Your world champion, Bugha.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRIGGS: The first-ever championship for the online video game at New York's Arthur Ashe Stadium was also the biggest-ever payout to a single player in an esports tournament.

Geirsdorf finished with 59 points, a huge lead over the second-place finisher, Harrison Chang, who at 24 is one of the oldest competitors playing. And he still won $1.8 million for second prize.

ROMANS: That's awesome.

BRIGGS: Stop yelling at those kids. Embrace it.

ROMANS: Umm.

BRIGGS: Nah, we'll still yell.

ROMANS: Thanks for joining us.

BRIGGS: We'll still yell.

ROMANS: I'm Christine Romans.

BRIGGS: I'm Dave Briggs. Keep yelling. Here's "NEW DAY".

ROMANS: I don't think my kids would like that.

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome to our viewers in the United States and all around the world. This is a special edition of NEW DAY.

It's Monday, July 29th. It's 6:00 here in Detroit. We're here preparing for tomorrow night's Democratic debate but we do being with breaking news.

This morning, it is Gilroy. Three people are dead, 11 others injured after a gunman opened fire at a fair in Northern California. You can see some of the video of it right here, sending people running for their lives.

This happened in the city of Gilroy at the very popular Garlic Festival. Police say the gunman had an assault-style rifle. Witnesses say he fired randomly into the crowd.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: And we've learned that one of the victims killed is a 6-year-old boy named Steven Romero. He was at the festival with his mother and grandmother, who were also shot.