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Donald Trump Brags About Crowd Visit During El Paso Hospital Visit; Warning Signs Existed For Both Shooter In Dayton And The Suspect In El Paso; A Massive ICE Raid Separates Families On The First Day Of School. Aired 2-2:30p ET

Aired August 8, 2019 - 14:00   ET


BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN HOST: Hi there. I'm Brooke Baldwin, you're watching CNN. We begin with a snapshot from El Paso, Texas, where 22 families are planning funerals, and wounded survivors still lay in hospital beds traumatized by the mass shooting that put them there less than a week ago.

One day ago, the President of the United States visited that same hospital and bragged about himself and once again bragged about the crowd size at one of his recent rallies there.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I was here three months ago, we made a speech and we had a -- what was the name of the arena? That place was --


D. TRUMP: Packed, right?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was front row.

D. TRUMP: Right? The judges are respected.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was front row.

D. TRUMP: What was the name?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was front row in there.


D. TRUMP: Oh, good. Come here. That was some crowd.

M. TRUMP: Thank you for all that you do.

D. TRUMP: And we had twice the number outside. And then you had this crazy Beto. Beto had like 400 people in a parking lot. They said his crowd was wonderful.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BALDWIN: Again, this happened as men and women and children were in

hospital beds recovering from one of the deadliest mass shootings in our nation's history. Crowd size, again.

That was in a hallway speaking to a private group of first responders. But when he first went to the cameras in El Paso, the first time the public heard from him after this all important visit his words for a nation in mourning were about himself.


D. TRUMP: The love and the respect for the office of the presidency. It was -- I wish you could have been in there to see it. I wish you could have been in there. And it was no different here.


BALDWIN: And just to remind you on Monday, when the President addressed the nation reeling off of a deadly weekend, and that prepared speech on a teleprompter, remember, the President called for political unity.


D. TRUMP: Now is the time to set destructive partisanship aside, so destructive.


BALDWIN: But in the past four days, the President has attacked or insulted at least 15 people or groups on Twitter or using the microphone. In the hours, in fact, between visiting the wounded and thanking the first responders in Dayton, Ohio, preparing for similar conversations he was about to have in El Paso, Texas, he couldn't stop himself from launching insults at 35,000 feet on Twitter, against the former Vice President, ripping media coverage, turning the attention back to himself.

Listen, I know this President breaks every norm in the book. But this isn't about breaking with presidential behavior. This is just wrong. This is gutless. And if we don't continue to call it out, then we are normalizing this kind of behavior because we're better than this.

CNN Political Commentator, Tara Setmayer is here. Tara, what are you thinking?

TARA SETMAYER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: You know, I just look at this, and I think what a small, petty, insecure person. He never ceases to amaze me at how low he'll go in order to feed his own ego. I mean, this is malignant narcissism 101.

Here he is, as you pointed out, he is in a hospital where people were gunned down. People were are recovering from a massacre, partially because of rhetoric that he has spewed out of his own mouth that this shooter repeated in his scribe posted on the internet, and it was very controversial for him to be there in the first place in El Paso. And it was my understanding that -- it had been reported that there

were some victims that didn't want to see him. And can anybody blame them? Look at the way this man behaves. You know, this obsession he has with crowd size is just something that is -- it's not normal. It's dysfunctional.

This is not how a well-adjusted adult behaves in situations like this. I mean, what is he overcompensating for, for goodness sakes? Bragging about his crowd size, comparing it constantly while he is in the hospital.

You know what this reminds me of, it reminds me of what a President used to look like, how I long for that. When George W. Bush visited troops, wounded warriors at Walter Reed Hospital, and actually, it was one of our CNN colleagues who reminded me of this incident. Dana Perino wrote a book a couple of years ago, where she outlined an instance where George W. Bush was at Walter Reed visiting wounded warriors, and the mother of one of the soldiers lit into him.

She was really upset that her son was wounded. And she expressed it and he sat there and just took it. And when they got back on Marine One, he looked out the window and said to Dana Perino, "Boy, that momma sure was mad at me, and you know what I deserved it," and a tear came down his eye as they flew back to the White House.

[14:05:06] SETMAYER: Now, that is what a President does. When you are in a position of power, you're the most powerful man in the world, a lot of things come at you and you're responsible for a lot of things. You just take it.

You don't sit there and go on Twitter, and go and attack people and attack political enemies and brag about crowd sizes. I mean, it's awful.

BALDWIN: I know. Is it -- I mean, I'm just having -- fresh off a plane today from Ohio, you know, and being surrounded by such sadness and such anger. I guess, I'm sitting here wondering, is it possible for a nation to heal without, as you point out, you know, as you know, George W. Bush or Barack Obama or countless others --

SETMAYER: Anyone else.

BALDWIN: You know, without a consoler-in-chief, right, especially one who divides?

SETMAYER: I mean, I'm not quite sure. I mean, who do we turn to for that leadership? Sure? It sure as hell isn't -- it hasn't been the Republican Party leadership. They've succumbed to this President's dishonor of the office time after time. They make excuses for him over and over again.

When they were the same people -- because I know, I was there. I was in the middle of those fights -- Republicans were the same ones who went after Barack Obama for not being sensitive enough to terrorist attacks, or not calling out radical Islam or going to play golf after a journalist was beheaded and he gave a speech, "Whoa, he went to play golf. How awful of him." Where are those people now?

Donald Trump over the weekend was yakking it up at his private golf course after these massacres happened, as if you know, he couldn't be bothered. And then he makes a speech on Monday, after someone writes it for him, and we're supposed to think that that's going to make everything okay?

I mean, he's so divisive. His rhetoric is so divisive. It's dishonorable. He is dishonorable. He dishonors the memory of all of these people. And I'm not quite sure, who do we turn to in this country because, we sure as hell don't have a consoler-in-chief, you've got a whiner-in-chief, a victim-in-chief, a Twitterer-in-chief -- everything but what the office of the presidency requires in these moments.

Trump never ever rises to the occasion and he never will. He just never will.

BALDWIN: Tara Setmayer. Thank you very much. I'm still thinking about that mother at Walter Reed.

SETMAYER: Yes. That is a good powerful story.

BALDWIN: Power. Good on President Bush. Thank you. You know, all of this comes as we learn new disturbing details, but the warning signs that existed for both the shooter in Dayton and the suspect in El Paso.

In Dayton, a friend of the gunman's sister tells CNN that he wants tried to choke her when she stood up to him. She says he only stopped when his mother begged him to.

And in El Paso, CNN has exclusive reporting that the suspect's mother once called police concerned about the weapons he owned. Ed Lavandera is in El Paso for us this afternoon. And so, Ed, what exactly did that mother tell police in El Paso.

ED LAVANDERA, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Brooke. Well, a lawyer for the family of the 21-year-old gunman here at the El Paso Walmart shooting tells us that the mother in just the recent weeks had reached out to police in Allen, Texas, that is the suburb north of Dallas, where the 21 year old lived with his grandparents. And this lawyer says that the mother had expressed some concern that her son had this AK-style firearm, and she was worried about his maturity and ability to handle that type of weapon.

According to the lawyer, the mother was told that he was legally able to own that weapon. And that -- and we've also reached out to Allen Police about this call. And they say that they don't have documentation that that phone call was made.

But the law lawyer, Brooke, also points out that it wasn't like her -- she believed her son was acting in a volatile way or a violent way. And in the words of the lawyers that it wasn't like alarm bells were going off, but that the mother did have concerns about her son owning that weapon. And that's why she made that phone call to police in Allen, Texas -- Brooke.

BALDWIN: Ed Lavandera. Thank you. Thus, all of these conversations about these red flag laws. In addition today, "The Washington Post" is reporting that according to a hospital spokesperson, all eight shooting victims, who are being treated at University Medical Center declined to meet with President Trump.

On the sidewalks of El Paso, he was met with major protest, signs declaring he was not welcome and blame for that city's recent violence from some immigration advocates and Texas Democrats.


MARISSA LIMON GARZA, EL PASO PROTEST ORGANIZER: Blood was not spilt by accident and we know that the man visiting our community today has made this possible. And we're not going to let that go by unrecognized.

BETO O'ROURKE (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We live in a country where we have a President who demonizes communities like this one, who vilifies immigrants, who says that those from Mexico are rapists and criminals, and warns of invasions and infestations.

REP. VERONICA ESCOBAR (D-TX): There have been words that have been powerful and painful and full of hate and full of bigotry and full of racism, and those words are still out there.


[14:10:08] BALDWIN: My next two guests attended that El Paso protest yesterday and their background provides a pretty unique conversations. Amanda Barba is an El Paso native while her husband's Derek Rhoades is from just outside of Dayton, Ohio.

So thanks, you two, so much for being here.

And I mean, just going back to Saturday night, Sunday morning, Amanda, you know, you get the news that this mass shooting happens in your hometown. And then hours later, Derek, you're -- you get the news about Dayton. I mean, are shootings just so commonplace now that everyone is going to say, "It happened in my hometown." It's disgusting.

DEREK RHOADES, DAYTON, OHIO NATIVE: Yes, I mean, absolutely. It was a really surreal experience. Right after we heard about the El Paso thing in the waning hours of that evening, the Dayton thing, you know, occurred and everybody here kind of has similar reactions as other shootings.

We never thought it could happen here. It could never happen to us, and to have it happen to both of our areas at the same time is really kind of a really -- you know, it's really like a nightmarish scenario, you know.

BALDWIN: Amanda, you want to jump in on that? AMANDA BARBA Yes, I found out and then just hours later, Derek found

out about his hometown, and we were just both in disbelief about that. I still can't believe it. Even coming here, I still can't believe it. And we're completely devastated.

BALDWIN: I know, your heart breaks for Texas and Ohio. And, Derek, I know that you said when you guys were at the protest yesterday, you know, you were pleased that you saw other people who, you know, look like you who were protesting as well.

But interesting, you told my producer, something I wanted to ask you about. You said -- your words -- as a middle class white male, that you feel embarrassed? What do you mean by that?

RHOADES: Well, you know, I feel like as a member of the society and this culture and with the increasing diversity of the United States, and we're in a society that is historically, you know, Judeo- Christian, historically and predominantly white. And so, you know, I feel we -- you know, I'm a part of a demographic that enjoys significant privilege compared to minorities and oppressed cultures in our society.

And so, you know, I feel like we have, you know, we have a role to play in our society to stand up when we see things that we need to speak out against, and to be respectful Americans, and to call people out when it's -- when we should. And that's really what I meant by that.

And, and I -- you know, we nobody can take responsibility for what other people do. And that's not what I meant to say that, you know, I'm responsible, you know, we're responsible somehow for other people that look like us, but at the same time, as a as a white man in the United States, I'm in a different place than a brown or an Asian or a black man or woman in the United States. And that's just the way it is.

BALDWIN: I appreciate you saying that. It's on us to be allies. Right? It's on us to be allies. Amanda, to you. I know, there was a lot of opposition yesterday to the President's visit and an El Paso City Councilwoman actually wrote the President a letter saying that his visit would prevent your community from healing. Do you think she took that too far? I mean, you know the people in your hometown so well?

BARBA: The vast majority of people in El Paso did not want the President to come. He has done nothing but bad mouth Hispanics, immigrants. You know, he has demonized us, and we just didn't feel that this was the appropriate time for him to come.

There was a few people that did want him to come, but the vast majority of El Pasoans felt that they didn't want him to come. And I know some of the victims probably felt that way, too. And I feel like that should have been respected.

BALDWIN: Amanda and Derek, thank you both so much for being with me, both from El Paso and from just outside of Dayton. How about that? We're going to move on and thank you. A massive ICE raid separates

families on the first day of school. We'll talk about what happens to the children now wondering why their parents won't come back.

And a brand new poll in the 2020 race for President, a breakdown of how voters are feeling about these Democrats, especially when it comes to Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren. You're watching CNN, I'm Brooke Baldwin. We'll be right back.


[14:19:12] BALDWIN: Welcome back. You're watching CNN. I'm Brooke Baldwin. Now to family separations of a whole different kind where the children are not detained, but are the ones left behind.

This next clip, it is excruciating to watch, not because of graphic violence or explicit material, but because it shows a child in pain, in desperation pleading for her dad.

He was detained in what Federal prosecutors call the largest immigration raid in one state ever. Six hundred eighty people were arrested including the father of 11-year-old Magdalena Gomez Gregorio.


MAGDALENA GOMEZ GREGORIO, FATHER WAS DETAINED IN IMMIGRATION RAID: Government, please have a heart. Don't let me be with anybody else, please. Don't leave the child with crimes and everything. I need my dad for me. My dad didn't do nothing. He is not a criminal.


[14:20:07] BALDWIN: Dozens of children were impacted by the raid of seven food processing plants in six cities in Mississippi, an operation that came after a year-long investigation according to the acting Director of ICE

For many of the kids, it was their first day of school. One woman took video of a raid in Martin, Mississippi, and you can hear the urgency of another 11-year-old girl weeping before she approaches an officer on the scene.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (Speaking in Spanish).

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Please, can I just my mother, please?



BALDWIN: We have learned that girl and her mother have reunited and my next guest has lived through the aftermath of family separation. The father of Edgar Carranza was deported when Edgar was 13. His brother was 11, his dad had a traffic violation and drug possession led to the removal order.

But afterward, Edgar and his brother went into foster care where they, too, were separated. And Edgar Carranza is with me now. Edgar, thank you so much for coming on. And I want to get into your story and what that felt like for you when you were just 13.

But I mean, listening to these girls. I mean, I've listened to that so many times today, and it's still just gets -- it gets you. So when you when you see these little girls, you know, separated and boys, you know, separated from their parents and the cries. What are you thinking?

EDGAR CARRANZA, FATHER DEPORTED TO GUATEMALA WHEN HE WAS 13: Well, first of all, thank you for having me here, Brooke. And that clip, it's -- it's very traumatizing. It really brings me back to when I was 13, and the same had happened to me coming back from school.

It's painful. It's very painful. It's traumatizing. I'm 25 now and it still haunts me. When things are going good, I think back on that. And those cries that was literally my first night being in foster care, having been split from my family. It just takes me back to that night, the first night that I was in care.

BALDWIN: I mean, tell your story. You were 13, there living in Georgia, you come home from school, you discover your dear dad, who was your family's sole provider is nowhere to be seen.

CARRANZA: Yes. So I went as a kid in California for the first time when I was three. And at that time, my dad did everything he could to regain custody, he moved to Georgia, and so my brother and I, we came to live here in Atlanta.

And when I was 13, things went a different way in our lives. And my dad was put into jail. My brother and I ended up in care. When I was 13, my brother was 11 at that time, and it is awful.

I mean, just thinking back on that day, I was able to live with my brother for one month when that happened. For the remainder of his life, he went through about 40 placements between age 11 and age 17.

BALDWIN: Four zero.

CARRANZA: Four zero, 40, yes. And at 17 he was put into -- he was sentenced and put in prison for 11 years. There was no one to advocate for him. The system here in Georgia did not know where he was, and worst of all, I mean, me and my brother didn't have any communication with my dad over those years.

As much as I tried to advocate, I was young, and it was hard to get the point across that I wanted to see my brother and that I wanted him to have access to my dad.

BALDWIN: Do you think what -- as a result, what happened to your dad, and correct me, your dad ended up back in Guatemala?

CARRANZA: Yes, he currently lives there now. BALDWIN: He is in Guatemala, your brother goes through 40 different

foster or 40 different placements. Do you think what happened to your brother in all that moving because of the separation led to bad choices he made down the line?

CARRANZA: I think it all correlates. Definitely -- there was lack of support. Between age 11 and age 17, I was able to see my brother three times. And that was with me constantly asking to be able to visit him, to be able to see him and the promises that were made to him that if he would, you know have good behavior or he would follow the rules, he would do that. And then promises would be broken.

So it became hard to really advocate over the years to be there for him, and at age 17, he did what he did. It was -- it was through a letter that I found out that he had been sentenced for 11 years. So the trial and all that had already taken place. And it was me actually informing the system, the foster care system that he was in prison.

BALDWIN: So, let's just full circle this whole because we started with these kids, right, in Mississippi. And you know how damaging and how haunting this is still for you in your mid-20s. What do these children have -- it's not even to look forward to -- it's what do their futures hold?

[14:25:19] CARRANZA: Just seeing that clip, and the amount of youth that are going into the systems in the different states, it's going to be hard. Most of them, there is a sense of prejudice that's going on in this country. And they are Latino, a lot of them don't speak English.

Fortunately, I can speak English, but for those youth, they can't, and they cannot advocate for themselves. It's going to be a hard road. To get there, what they need, what they want, it's going to be hard to get that for them for the language barrier.

A lot of these youth don't even know where they're coming from. They don't know where their parents are going. So, there's a disconnect that's happening that is very dangerous for the future that they're going to be living in the next few years.

BALDWIN: Yes, Edgar, I so appreciate your just -- you know, your honesty and sharing your experience and just thank you.

CARRANZA: Thank you so much for this. I really appreciate this.

BALDWIN: Yes, thank you. There is a major climate report out today that could impact the food you eat and a Montana man accused of assaulting a 13-year-old boy for wearing a hat during the national anthem. We will give you details on that case.