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Trump Drops Plan To Nominate Ratcliffe For Intel Chief; Hong Kong Demonstrators Gather For Ninth Weekend In A Row; Defense Secretary Discusses Plan To Deploy Missiles To Asia; Three Dead After California Bluff Collapses; U.S. Adds 164,000 Jobs In July, Unemployment Holds At 3.7 Percent; Garner Family calls For Officer Pantaleo To Be Fired; R. Kelly Pleads Not Guilty To Sex-Crime Charges, Denied Bail; New California Law Requires 2020 Candidates To Submit Tax Returns. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired August 3, 2019 - 07:00   ET




[07:00:00] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Another presidential nominee for a very important being pulled from consideration.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I felt that Congressman Ratcliffe was being treated very unfairly.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: President Trump abruptly yanks the nomination of Republican Congressman John Ratcliffe to be his next Director of National Intelligence.

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): He strikes me as extremely unqualified in every way.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Puerto Rico has a new governor; this comes after months of unrest. Ricardo Rossello stepped down and has chosen Pedro Pierluisi to replace him.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A lot of people here are saying they're not happy with that selection.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is the ninth straight weekend of massive public protests in Hong Kong.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This may be the last time we can come on to the streets to demonstrate for our freedom and democracy, as long as there is still a little bit of hope, we will still fight until the end.


ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY WEEKEND with Victor Blackwell, and Christi Paul.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Good to have you here at the top of the hour this Saturday morning. President Trump now says that Congressman John Ratcliffe will not be nominated as the next director of National Intelligence. Now, he was just announced less than a week ago, and with every passing day, his confirmation seemed less likely, and now the president says he feels bad for Ratcliffe.


TRUMP: I felt that Congressman Ratcliffe was being treated very unfairly. I was reading the press, and I think I am a student of the press. And I could see that the press was treating him, I thought, very unfairly. He's an outstanding man. And I asked him, I said, do you want to go through this for two or three months, or would you want me to maybe do something else, and he thought about it. I said, it's going to be rough. I can see exactly where the press is going.


CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Now, Ratcliffe had very little national security experience to start with and a Republican Senate source told CNN that there was very little enthusiasm for his confirmation. President Trump, of course, blaming the press for the down fall but he also said he seemed to depend on the media to vet his candidates.


TRUMP: You vet for me. I like when you vet. No, no, you vet. I think the White House has a great vetting process. You vet for me. When I give a name, I give it out to the press, and you vet for me. A lot of times you do a very good job -- not always. I think the vet -- the White -- if you look at it, I mean, if you take a look at it, the vetting process for the White House is very good but you're a part of the vetting process, you know. I give out a name to the press and they vet for me. We save a lot of money that way.


BLACKWELL: We'll talk about that in a moment. Joining us now from Washington, CNN Political Analyst, Toluse Olorunnipa, White House Correspondent for the Washington Post. I give you the name and you vet for me. Let's save that to the end. Let's start here, Toluse, and good morning to you first.


BLACKWELL: Listen, nomination fights in this administration have been partisan. They have faced media scrutiny. There have even been questions about qualifications before. What was the tipping point just five days after the first tweet that led to the final tweet in the story of John Ratcliffe as nominee for DNI?

OLORUNNIPA: Well, Victor, normally, you don't have presidents making these big types of announcements on Twitter without consulting a Senate that's led by their own party, that would be pivotal in deciding whether or not this person got through. So, the president tweeted out this name, and as he said in the tape, you know, he waited for the press to do the vetting.

But normally, presidents talk to Republican leaders, they talk to members of their party, does this person have the support necessary to get through the confirmation process? The president, obviously, did not do that. He put out this name and he got a very tepid response from Republicans, even publicly, they were not seeming enthusiastic about John Ratcliffe being the next director of the DNI.

And behind the scene, they were even more tepid in their response and basically telling the president and telling the White House, it is going to be tough to get this guy confirmed, that there are a number of Republican senators that have concerns about whether or not he has the right qualifications of the job. This is supposed to be a nonpartisan position. You're supposed to have extensive national security experience.

Ratcliffe did not have that. It's even written in the law that you're supposed to have a certain level of experience. So, it was becoming more and more difficult to see a pathway for Ratcliffe's nomination. And that's part of the reason the president pulled the plug pretty quickly on that nomination.

[07:05:05] BLACKWELL: So, looking forward, two sources tell CNN that it's unlikely that the Deputy DNI, Sue Gordon, will be nominated as or chosen as the acting Director of National Intelligence and that they are actively looking for another option. Is the president looking for someone who's more loyal, someone who's more partisan, why look beyond the deputy to be the acting moving forward until they find a permanent nominee?

OLORUNNIPA: If you think about the reason that Dan Coats, the current director is being, sort of, pushed out of the way in part, it's because he has not walked in lock step with President Trump in, you know, talking about intelligence issues, talking about Russia's interference in the election. He's been clear on speaking out on behalf of the intelligence community and sometimes in contrast to what President Trump has said.

President Trump has down played Russia's interference in the 2016 race. So, Sue Gordon being a career official, not a Trump loyalist, not someone who is appointed or selected by the Trump White House, this president is concerned that maybe she would continue that practice of breaking with the president, talking about issues that maybe make the president look bad or make the president look as if he's not sticking to the facts.

So, the White House is looking for someone who's more loyal. They thought Ratcliffe would be loyal, especially based how he behaved during the Mueller hearing, where he was aggressive towards Bob Mueller and sort of advancing conspiracy theories. And so, the president is looking for someone who can be an attack dog in the intelligence community.

BLACKWELL: And we'll leave the president's request that the media vet his nominees for another day. Toluse Olorunnipa, always good to have you, sir.

OLORUNNIPA: Thank you.

PAUL: So, after seeing a map of widespread wildfires in Siberia, President Trump called Russian President Vladimir Putin this week.

BLACKWELL: But according to a senior administration official, several, of them, in fact, they moved on from the fires to the need to replace Ambassador Jon Huntsman.

PAUL: Joining us now from Brooklyn Heights, New Jersey, CNN White House Reporter, Sarah Westwood, how did they make that shift, do we know, from fires to the ambassador?

SARAH WESTWOOD, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Well, Christi, sources say that this was a relatively quick phone call between Russian President Vladimir Putin, and President Donald Trump. It was, as you mentioned, initiated because President Trump saw that map of the wildfires ravaging Siberia. He called to offer U.S. assistance in combatting those flames but the conversation did drift to the fact that soon the Trump administration will likely need to name a new ambassador to Russia, given that Ambassador Jon Huntsman, who's been there since the beginning of the presidency is said to be planning his departure in the weeks ahead.

Sources told our colleagues, Pam Brown and Kylie Atwood, that Huntsman and his wife have been on something of a farewell tour, having dinners with fellow diplomats, going to events in what appears to be preparations to leave the country. Sources said that Trump and Putin did not discuss the intermediate range nuclear forces treaty from which the U.S. formally withdrew yesterday. They also did not discuss the coming U.S. sanctions on Russia in retaliation for Russia's poisoning of an ex-spy in the U.K., but that conversation did drift to Huntsman.

Although, Trump and Putin apparently did not discuss possible new names to replace Huntsman. They just discussed the need to replace him, and this could be interpreted, Victor and Christi, as an effort for President Trump to warm relations between Putin and Russia. The White House in that readout also said that the two discussed a trade relationship between the U.S. and Russia.

PAUL: All right. Sarah Westwood, appreciate it, thank you.

BLACKWELL: As a protest, march -- it winds through Hong Kong. Beijing is watching, also sending out a warning. The anti-government, pro-democracy march started a few hours ago while pro-police demonstrators held a competing rally.

PAUL: Now, this is the ninth weekend of protests and you've seen that the tensions are running high, the unrest continuing there in Hong Kong. Sometimes it gets down-right scary.

BLACKWELL: Let's go live now to CNN's Senior International Correspondent Ivan Watson in Hong Kong. Ivan, the sun is going down there, a little after 7:00 p.m. What are you seeing from the protesters?

IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, we see a large number of predominantly young people, mostly dressed in black, some of them, many of them with their faces covered to protect their identities, some with helmets and other makeshift pieces of armor, anticipating perhaps some trouble that have shut down one of the busiest commercial thoroughfares in the highly congested city.

Hardly any traffic moving across here, and all of the stores on what would normally be a busy shopping day, shuttered and closed. The authorities have been warning saying that this is not authorized, this is not allowed -- they are calling this illegal. The problem here is that there is a fundamental disagreement between this protest movement and the Hong Kong authorities over is this a sanctioned legal protest that people have the right to do or is this a riot?

[07:10:08] Which the government has called these actions in the past. Both sides have grown increasingly violent as this protest move has continued and the government in mainland China has been ramping up its warnings as well. Nobody really knows where this will go in the end, but it's hurting the economy in this international financial hub, and it is dividing families, those who support the protest movement and those who oppose it. Victor and Christi.

BLACKWELL: Ivan Watson in Hong Kong for us. Ivan, thank you.

So, we're just getting this in. Defense Secretary Mark Esper is talking about a plan to deploy intermediate range missiles to Asia.

PAUL: Yes, this is an announcement that comes, think about it, just a day after the U.S. left the INF treaty. And the crisis with Iran shows no signs of cooling down. But I want to take a minute with you here to listen to what Esper told reporters just moments ago -- this is as he's on his way to Sydney, Australia.


MARK ESPER, DEFENSE SECRETARY: I'm talking about conventional weapons. Yes, INF range, right? Exactly. I would prefer months. I just don't have the -- I don't have the latest data play on timelines for either a cruise missile or a long-range missile as the army was preparing it. But these things tend to take longer than you expect. There's a number of factors that weigh in. So, I don't want to get ahead of ourselves. We need to first focus on the programs in getting the system right.


BLACKWELL: We'll talk more about that throughout the morning. Still to come, though, employment growth in the U.S. is still solid, although there has been some slowing. How long can the U.S. sustain the economic expansion? We'll have a report on that ahead.

PAUL: And three people are killed when a bluff collapse on a California Beach. Experts warn, listen, this could happen again. We'll show you more of what happened.


[07:15:07] BLACKWELL: Rapper ASAP Rocky is back in the United States while a Swedish court decides his future. The 30-year-old rapper spent a month in jail on assault charges after a street fight in Stockholm. Now, he and two members of his entourage claim that they were defending themselves.

PAUL: Prosecutors are requesting ASAP Rocky and his codefendants who received a sentence between six to 10 months in jail. Now, a verdict is scheduled to come in August 14th.

BLACKWELL: At least three people have died; two others are hurt after a bluff collapsed on top of them. Now, this was just north of Encinitas, California. Everyone chipped in to try to free those victims. They were trapped under the rubble, the mud, and dirt. Experts say that chunk of cliff that fell is about the size of a bus and as heavy as a concrete wall.

PAUL: And falling bluffs are unfortunately common, they say, along the San Diego County beaches there. Life guards say they're constantly warning people to stay away from them.


JIM PEPPERDINE, ENCINITAS RESIDENT: It's absolutely sad, and then watching them counsel the victims, either the parents or relatives, whoever they were, they were pretty distraught.


BLACKWELL: Experts are worried there could be another collapse in the area, but they say there's no way of predicting when.

PAUL: So, the U.S. economy, let's talk about that, added 164,000 jobs in July. The unemployment rate remained at 3.7 percent. So, this marks the 17th straight month that it's been at or below four percent.

BLACKWELL: So, what does the jobs report say about the state of the economy and did it warrant this week's interest rate cut. CNN's Christine Roman reports.


CHRISTINE ROMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Christi and Victor, it was a report that was exactly in line with what economists expected. Doesn't really change the story yet for the fed but it paints a picture of an economy that is still strong. Companies are still hiring, but it's slowing a little bit. Let me show you what I mean.

You had 164,000 net new jobs in the month. That's right in line with the average for the year. But when you look at the average for this year so far, it is a little bit of a slower pace than we have seen in years past, so this shows you a labor market that has really been doing well for ten years and is now starting to show some signs of tiredness, I would say.

Let's look at the sectors, business and information services, this is a typical strong part of the labor market, and I'm going to tell you that a lot of these jobs here are highly skilled, highly technical jobs that pay well. Health care, that has been a consistent performer, and look here at manufacturing. Created some jobs, about 16,000, but the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Department of Labor, points out that basically this is unchanged for the month, and honestly, unchanged for the year.

You're not seeing manufacturing job growth like you'd like to. Again, when you look at the trend overall, it is still fine, but not gang busters, and certainly we're on track now for the first half of this year for the slowest kind of job growth that we've seen really in the past eight or nine years. Wages coming in at about 3.2 percent. A couple of real bright spots to tell you about.

We saw 370,000 people come in off the sidelines to try to look for work. That is a good sign. That means that the job market has been good enough for long enough that people who were sidelined after the great recession are now confident enough to come in and get work. That is a good sign.

We also saw something called the U-6, the underemployment rate. That fell all the way to seven percent. That's really the best we've seen in this whole cycle. So, a couple of numbers there showing you that after all of this time, this is still a pretty healthy labor market. It's just not as robust as it was last year. Victor, Christi.


PAUL: Christine, thank you so much. Now, we have us CEO and Founder of Pipeline Equity, Katica Roy. Katica, thank you for being here. We just heard those numbers, they're very solid. But I think a lot of people might be sitting at home going how long can we sustain this growth?

KATICA ROY, CEO AND FOUNDER, PIPELINE EQUITY: Yes, when we look at the jobs market, it's actually -- the strong market is adding more jobs, and it's actually good for women as well as for the economy. So, what we're actually seeing is that it's pulling more women back into the work force. In the last year we saw, that women actually increased their labor force participation to 47 percent of the work force, and women are the most educated cohort in the U.S. And actually, for the first time this year, there's more educated women in the work force than men and that actually is good for our economy because it is increasing women's labor force participation, actually helps us realize the $2.1 trillion economic opportunity of closing the gender equity gap.

PAUL: OK, but is it sustainable? How sustainable it is as we look at these numbers?

ROY: You know, when we look at it, one of the things that we see is that in fact, women, while they are the most educated cohort in the U.S., have been leaving the work force, and are projected to leave to 2026. And so, seeing a turn-around of that number, we know is actually a positive sign, not only for women but also for the economy.

[07:20:09] PAUL: So, let's talk about the president threatening to hike tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese -- worth of Chinese goods. Next month, that would happen September 1st. Let's listen together to what he said about who's going to feel that impact.


TRUMP: China is devaluing their currency and they're also pouring money in. Their currency is going to hell, but they're also pouring money in, and that will totally pay for the tariffs. The tariffs are not being paid for by our people. It's being paid for by China because of devaluation, and because they're pumping money in.


PAUL: But here's the thing, analysts say that these tariffs are targeting every day goods as opposed to say the industrial materials that were affected last time around, so we're talking about T.V.s and iPhones, and sneakers, and toys. How soon might be it be before Americans do see the spike, and is what the president said correct? Are we going to feel that as consumers?

ROY: Yes, so when we look at the tariffs through the lens of gender, what we actually see is that the tariffs actually are part of the gender pay gap, and they sit squarely in the pink tax. And so, what happens is that more money is actually coming out of women's wallets than men for items like apparel, footwear, and household items. And in fact, 75 percent of the tariff burden on U.S. households is from apparel, and women actually bear the brunt of 65 percent of that. So, the average import tax for men's clothing is actually 11.9 percent, and for women, it's actually 15.1 percent. And so, I think it calls into question as we expand the tariff burden, really is this good for U.S. consumers as well as for the broader economy?

PAUL: All right. Katica Roy, appreciate you taking time for us this morning. Thank you, ma'am.

ROY: Thank you.

BLACKWELL: Well, some 2020 Democratic presidential candidates are walking back their criticisms of the Obama administration. This is after backlash from this week's debate. How Democrats can build on the Obama legacy at least from some of the candidates' perspectives, coming up.


[07:26:00] PAUL: 25 minutes past the hour. And this morning, some 2020 Democratic presidential candidates walking back their criticism of former President Obama during this week's debate. Some targeted Joe Biden's record on health care and immigration during the Obama administration, in turn attacking the former president's legacy.

BLACKWELL: Now, those Democrats are reversing course. Senator Cory Booker applauded the former president's popularity, telling CNN: If Obama was running for president for a third term, he wouldn't even be running. He's saying that he wouldn't be in the race.

PAUL: Yes, meaning that Booker himself wouldn't be running. BLACKWELL: Made more sense when it's written. Back to discuss now,

Toluse Olorunnipa. So, Toluse, it seems like what we saw on Wednesday night at least, maybe not so much on Tuesday, some of these candidates are saying, ys, maybe that was too far.

OLORUNNIPA: That's right. We're hearing a huge defense of President Obama's legacy now after the debates, that we did not hear during the debates. You did not hear very many candidates praising Obama's eight years in office and all of the accomplishments he was able to achieve. Instead, you heard a lot of them using what they believed were the deficiencies of Obama's term to attack Joe Biden, whether it was on immigration and deportations or whether it was on foreign policy and the troop surge in Afghanistan. Even health care, you know, a lot of the candidates were looking to not only build on Obamacare but instead dismantle Obamacare and replace it with something they believe would be better -- Medicare For All.

So, the candidates saw some of the backlash, not only from Obama allies but also from Democratic voters who find Obama to still be a popular president. The polls show that Obama continues to enjoy very high approval ratings from Democrats and Independents and the coalition that Obama put together to win in 2008 and 2012 including young voters and minority voters, whoever emerges from this big field of Democrats is going to need to put that coalition back together and trashing Obama's legacy is not one way to do it, and I think those candidates realize that after the debate.

PAUL: Some people may think Obama is sacred to some degree. They may miss the respect and dignity that he brought to office, not necessarily the policy as we saw on Wednesday night in terms of what they were looking at. But let me ask you this as we move forward, how do you attack former Vice President Biden which was really their intention without attacking President Obama?

OLORUNNIPA: It's a tough question. You have to do it with a lot of respect. If you rewind to the first debate where Senator Kamala Harris went after Biden on the issue of deportation, she spent a lot of time with a long preamble talking about how she respected President Obama, she worked well with President Obama but disagreed with him on this one issue.

That is an easier pill to swallow for a lot of Democrats, than sort of this all-out attack on various parts of his legacy without praising him, without praising his record. So, Democrats are trying to figure out the best way to separate Biden from the Obama record, try to talk about whether or not Biden was a positive influence or whether he was a negative influence in the White House or whether he failed to do what you would expect the vice president to do, which is provide some guidance, provide some help, to steer a new president through the rigors of the office.

So, Democrats are trying to figure out a way to separate Biden from Obama, but obviously Biden is pushing back very hard on that. He's saying, you know, I am a very close -- I was a very close adviser to President Obama. He vetted me. He chose me. So, all of these attacks on me are also an attack on Obama. So, he's making it very difficult for the Democrats to attack Obama.

BLACKWELL: But help us understand this, because you know, it's not new for candidates in a primary to criticize or question the previous administration. Now, President Trump is in many ways an anomaly and his criticism of the Bush administration, and when George W. Bush left office, he wasn't very popular. But in the 2018 primaries, there were certainly criticisms of former President Clinton who left office with a pretty high approval rating. Why is this so different when it comes to the Obama administration?

[07:30:08] OLORUNNIPA: Well, one thing is voters realize how tough of a time President Obama had, not only with republicans but also even with President Trump Who has spent the better part of 2-1/2 years trying to tear down the legacy of Obama. Trying to erase him from the history books and really repeal a lot of the accomplishments that he had over eight years.

So, Democrats are sensitive to anything that other Democrats do. And any time they spend attacking other Democrats are time they're not spending attacking President Trump, which is the real focus for many in the party.

PAUL: All right, Toluse Olorunnipa, we appreciate you being here as always, sir. Thank you.

OLORUNNIPA: Thank you.

PAUL: So, Eric Garner's family is demanding justice. It's been five years since the death of their family member. Coming up, what could happen to the officer accused of killing Garner now?


PAUL: 34 minutes pass the hour right now. And this week, an NYPD judge recommended Officer Daniel Pantaleo, be fired for his role in the death of Eric Garner. Garner died in police custody back in 2014. His last words, "I can't breathe," sparked a national outcry leading to protests across the country.

Now, New York's police commissioner has to decide if Pantaleo will lose his job. Garner's daughter says her family has waited long enough.


[07:34:59] EMERALD GARNER, DAUGHTER OF ERIC PANTALEO: We've waited five years. CCRB has made the recommendation. Commissioner O'Neal, fired Pantaleo. That's all we asked him. We asked him for the congressional hearings. We're going to keep fighting for the Eric Garner law, but five years is too long.


PAUL: CNN legal analyst and criminal defense attorney Joey Jackson, with us right now. Good morning to you, Joey. What do you think is going to happen here, what do you think is the right thing to do? JOEY JACKSON, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Good morning, Christi. I think the right thing to do would be to have him in jail but that's a separate issue, but let me discuss it anyway.

I think we have to recognize that the NYPD does a lot of good. I think they serve and they protect us every day. They're out there, they're walking the beat, and they're doing what they need to do.

When an officer, however, steps across that line, I think we have an obligation to call it out. So, let's reverse before we go forward. The fact is, is this family, Christi, has waited such a long time for justice.

There was a groundswell of support in the community for his state prosecution. Of course, at the time, if we want to talk historically when this occurred five years ago, there was state charges that were being contemplated, but there was no grand jury action. What does that mean?

It means, that the grand -- the district attorney at the time in Staten Island, Dan Donovan, who was a Congressman, who lost to Max Rose right in 2018. He presented the case, didn't get indictment. I can tell you as a former prosecutor that a grand jury indeed, a prosecutor could and a grand jury would indict a ham sandwich.

And so, when you don't get an indictment, because that's how you leave the jury. And so, it was a smack in the face of the family. Moving forward, there was no action as it related to his discipline, and the questions were why?

Now, Mayor de Blasio, during debate said the Justice Department told me not to do anything. Every state, every city is a sovereign. The federal government doesn't tell you what to do. You do as mayor what you think is most appropriate. The police commissioner does what they think is most appropriate. So, the family is weighted.

And then, Christi, you have the Justice Department only recently deciding not to pursue charge, which I wrote an op-ed column for CNN stating that, that was an outrage. And what was the basis? Well, you know what? We don't know if we could get a conviction.

The fact is, is that you have an obligation to present a case to a grand jury, number one. And number two, to go to trial and let members of the community make that determination that wasn't done.

I know, there was squabbling within the Justice Department as to should we go forward, should we not? I think the family deserved that. And finally, I do think that based upon this decision, I really believe that the commissioner will do the right thing and have him fired.

PAUL: All right. I want to talk to you too about the judge who has ordered R. Kelly to be held without bail. This is happening while he awaits trial on federal trafficking charges. Yesterday, the singer pleaded not guilty to a long list of charges. He's accused of having sex with three girls under the age of 18, hiding the fact that he had a sexually transmitted disease, producing child pornography. This is the second time he's facing child pornography charges, Joey. So, he's got these charges in New York, he's got these charges in Chicago.

Is he going to be let out? We know years ago, he was released pending some charges that had to be reviewed. And look at all of the charges that have come up in that time since then. So, how, how strong is the argument that this is a man that needs to be held or confined until this has worked out?

JACKSON: It's very strong, Christi. We should keep in mind, of course, that he is and the judge made a determination in Chicago that he will not be let out, pending his trial, and a judge in New York has made the similar determination.

So, we do not expect to anticipate that he'll be out, we're in a different climate, we're in a different time. Hands Up, #MeToo. You know, the Time's Up, Excuse Me, Me Too, And the fact is, is that I think the day of reckoning for Mr. Kelly. Everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

He deserves that same presumption. He's called the victims, you know, sort of disgruntled, et cetera.

But the fact is, is that --


PAUL: Disgruntled groupies is what his attorney said.

JACKSON: Yes, exactly. Exactly. Disgruntled groupies, but the fact is that he faces a world of hurt. And certainly, he can get consecutive time if convicted both in Illinois and New York.

PAUL: All right. Joey Jackson, always appreciate your perspective.

JACKSON: Thank you very much, Christi.

PAUL: Thank you, absolutely. Victor?

BLACKWELL: A new law in California says that all presidential candidates must submit their tax returns in order to get onto the state's primary ballot that includes President Trump. The implications for the president, the state, and the Republicans and Democrats beyond California. We'll talk about that, next.


[07:43:30] BLACKWELL: 17 minutes to the top of the hour now. in order to make the 2020 ballot in the country's largest state, California, lawmakers have now passed a law -- and the governor signed it that says President Trump has to release his tax returns.

The big question this morning, will this law hold up to challenges? And does this open the door for other states to start regulating the ballot requirement process too? I spoke with the University Of California, Irvine, Election Law professor, Rick Hasen about the implications.


BLACKWELL: So, Rick, the sponsor of the original bill made it clear that this is in direct response to President Trump's refusal to release his tax returns. And now we know that the Treasury Department is not releasing them to Congress.

But, there is this 25-year-old -- about 25 years old decision by the Supreme Court that states cannot stipulate that to run for Congress, candidates have to do more than the Constitution determines. Will this standup in court?

RICHARD HASEN, CHANCELLOR'S PROFESSOR OF LAW AND POLITICAL SCIENCE, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, IRVINE: Well, I think there's a huge question as to whether or not this is going to stand up in court. You mentioned to this case involving trying to require people who wanted to run for Congress to agree to a term limits amendment. The Supreme Court said you're adding qualifications.

We don't know if that precedent would apply to the presidency, there's somewhat of a different part of the Constitution there. But I think there's a real danger that this law is going to be struck down by the courts and not be put in place, at least, for presidential candidates.

BLACKWELL: Let's talk about the broader context here. Because when we speak about California, specifically, for President Trump and not being on the primary ballot unless he releases his tax returns. I mean, there's not going to be a significant primary fight and the chances that he would win California in a general election were slim to none, anyway. So, it's broader than the State of California, right?

[07:45:19] HASEN: Well, I think there are few things going on. One is that if Trump's not on the ballot, then you're going to have fewer Republicans turning out to vote generally, and that could affect other Republican races, it could affect voting on ballot measures.

So, I think there's a real issue there. But you're right, it also has national implications. What if another state passes a law saying, you can't run for president unless you produce your birth certificate or something else, and it could lead to a kind of spiraling down where states are trying to put in place different requirements that could affect who's actually on the ballot, and maybe not just in the primary, in the general election.

So, it's a road that the courts are going to be reluctant to let the states go down.

BLACKWELL: Birth certificate, health records, there could be a litany of things that states would require, and it would change from state to state. Let me ask you this. What are the supporters of this new law, from the governor to Democrats across the state, saying about that potential tit-for-tat that could spread across the country because of California's decision?

HASEN: I haven't heard much about that but I have heard them saying that states have a lot of control over -- you know, the ballot, what the ballot looks like. States get to decide, for example, in California. People get to list a three word description of what their job is.

You know, so States generally have a lot of leeway when it comes to structuring how the ballot is. How many candidates can qualify to be on the ballot? Those things are generally a matter of state law. So, it's really a question of how much power do you give states to do this? Versus how much power does the Constitution rein in when you're trying to add -- you know, beyond?

You have to be 35 years old, natural-born citizen if you want to run to be president of United States.


BLACKWELL: That's part of my conversation with Rick Hasen.

PAUL: Well, the top U.S. Navy SEAL, says his force has a quote discipline problem. And he is setting a deadline for solutions after incidents that include allegations of sexual harassment and drug use.

Is the misconduct a sign of a more systemic problem though? Admiral John Kirby is going to be with us here in a moment to talk about it.

First though, getting a good night rest, you know, that's as important as exercise, and nutrition. In this week's "STAYING WELL", we're going to take a look at ways to design a sleep friendly bedroom so you can get a better sleep.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The bedroom is incredibly important when it comes to designing your home for comfort. Because it's often a single sanctuary that you have for peace and privacy in your home.

I recommend that my clients try to darken their space as much as possible because light can really interfere with your circadian rhythm.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A good sleep environment is one that's cool, dark, and quiet. Some would say the optimal temperature is around 67 degrees.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: As far as window treatments in this room, I decided to go with this really fun pattern for the roman shades. But then, this really nice linen for the window panels.

But then, I did a blackout, so, it still gives the aesthetic of something soft. But it has a functionality of the blackout.

You want to place your bed on the main wall when you enter because it'll allow you to have this grand lux effect, where you have this oversized beautiful headboard, a really good mattress, good sheets.

I tend to go for Bamboo or tensile because they're moisture wicking. Smells are -- you know, really important to also -- you know, your mood. If not aromatherapy, then candles are great too.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Many people tend to think of sleep as lost time. When, in fact, it's probably the exact opposite. We need good sleep to help restore and revitalize all the important functions in our body.



[07:52:49] PAUL: We have a problem. That is the message from the top U.S. Navy SEAL to his force after several high profile incidents. The letter dated July 25th, doesn't mention any specific incidents, but recent allegations includes sexual harassment, alcohol use, during down time, as well as drug use.

I want to talk to retired Rear Admiral John Kirby. He's also a CNN military and diplomatic analyst. So, Admiral Kirby, thank you so much for being here.


When we talked about this letter from Rear Admiral Colin Green about Navy SEALs in Iraq, do you -- do you think that there is a culture that deals with issues that is a part of the culture of issues with the SEALs normally? Or is there something at the core here that maybe this is specific to Iraq?

KIRBY: Well, I think they don't know that right now, Christi. And that's what Admiral Green wants to go, I think, and find out.

I've known Colin Green for 20 years now. We were students together at the Naval War College. You're not going to find a more dedicated thoughtful leader and with a warrior experience than Colin Green.

He's exactly the right guy for this job and I think he wants to go find that. I think he wants to deal with the ethics and the behavioral issues that are right in front of him, but he also is willing to ask questions about whether there's some sort of broader cultural problem.

And I just don't know if we know that yet. I will say though this, and I'm not excusing the behavior because as Admiral Green noted, it's somewhat some of its egregious. And must be dealt with on its own merits.

But, we have to remember, Christi, you're talking about a community that has bore the brunt of these wars for the last 17, 18 years in ways that no other community has.

I mean, the special operators that we have out there have really been at the very front edge of the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan and in Syria, as well as in many other places around the world, and they're not getting much respite.

They're tough, they're resilient, but they have deployed time, and time, and time again. The divorce rate in Navy SEALs is among the highest in the military. It's certainly way higher than the public.

They deal with PTSD, they deal with increased rate of suicide.


[07:55:03] PAUL: Suicides.

KIRBY: So, there's a lot going on in the -- in the community that I think bears remembering.

PAUL: Yes, there were some tough numbers on suicides in the military this week out as well.


PAUL: So, Rear Admiral Colin Green has given commanders until August 7th, next Wednesday to detail the problems they have, to come up with a solution.

What do you think -- what immediate action? As he's calling for immediate action, what immediate action needs to be taken?

KIRBY: Well, I'm not in a position to say what needs to be taken. I think that's really for Admiral Green after he gets done talking to his commanders and gets her recommendations. I would suspect, Christi that you'll see them recommend some changes to training. And I don't mean the physical training that SEALs go through. I mean, leadership training, ethics training before they deploy.

And probably, after they come home, and whether or not -- you know, you need to check in a little bit more with these guys when they come home and see how they're doing. You know, I suspect it'll be more of a holistic approach. But my guess is the basic, the foundation that they'll be looking at is -- from a training perspective.

PAUL: All right, John Kirby -- Admiral John Kirby, we always appreciate the service and your perspective. Thank you, sir.

KIRBY: Thank you.

BLACKWELL: The next hour of your NEW DAY comes up after a quick break.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Another presidential nominee for a very important job being pulled from consideration.

TRUMP: I felt that Congressman Ratcliffe was being treated very unfairly.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: President Trump abruptly yanks the nomination of Republican Congressman John Ratcliffe to be his next Director of National Intelligence.

SCHUMER: He strikes me as extremely unqualified in every way.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Puerto Rico has a new governor. This comes after months of unrest. Ricardo Rossello stepped down and has chosen Pedro Pierluisi to replace him.