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U.S. Stock Futures Down; Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D-FL) is Interviewed about Tariffs and Immigration; Reflecting on Halston and His Impact on Fashion; Loughlin's Legal Fight. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired August 23, 2019 - 08:30   ET



[08:31:30] ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: OK, we have breaking financial news right now.

U.S. stock futures are down sharply ahead of the open today. You can see it on your screen. This after news that China will retaliate against the U.S. with new tariffs against the U.S., which have a very high price tag.

So let's get right to business anchor John Defterios with all of the breaking details.

What's happening, John?

JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN BUSINESS EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Well, Alisyn, this is quite symbolling in terms of the timing by China. Let's not forget first and foremost they're responding to the tariffs that have been going into place by the United States in early September. Remember, Donald Trump delayed having the second batch of the tariffs coming in by mid-December, to not be the Grinch that stole Christmas.

But this is also the day the G-7 Summit in Biarritz, France, of course. So the Chinese have timed this to the point here.

$75 billion worth the tariffs going onto U.S. goods. This will include also autos and auto parts. So look this as an effort by President Xi Jinping to ratchet up the president -- the pressure on the president, President Trump right now. He has said, Donald Trump, that China wants to talk with the United States and try to solve this by the end of 2019. This is an indication, because they've gone after strategic segment of the market with autos and auto parts and other details that will be crossing in the next 15 minutes, and time before the market opened to suggest that China's playing some hardball here going into the 2020 election. So quite a change of tone from China, matching, of course, with the United States here commiserate tariffs, but doing so on the day of the G-7 as it gets started is quite a signal.

JOHN AVLON, CNN ANCHOR: All right, thank you very much.

And joining us now is Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Mucarsel-Powell of Florida.

Congresswoman, I want to just help you weigh in on the breaking news here this morning. China appears to be ratcheting up the trade war. Trump trade advisor Peter Navarro, who will be joining Jim Sciutto in the 9:00 hour, saying that simply because this is occurring doesn't mean the U.S. economy is going into a recession.

Also this morning, earlier, Vladimir Putin announcing that he would try to symmetry match missile tests after the U.S. had been in the INF treaty. All this as the president heads to the G-7. What is your take about the state of American leadership in the world and these challenges as a congresswoman from Florida?

REP. DEBBIE MUCARSEL-POWELL (D-FL): It is truly unfortunate that we are losing leadership in the world standing at this moment. I have to tell you, I mean, I think that we should all understand that tariffs and this trade war with China is definitely affecting our economy. Tariffs are taxes on the American people. There -- it's not surprising that China is retaliating and escalating the trade war that President Trump started. And I do think that this president is feeling isolated from our allies and friends, our long-term allies. And he is entering a G-7 Summit where the main topic of conversation is going to be the climate crisis that we're facing. And this is a president who pulled out of the Paris climate agreement. And I think that he is going to be surprised when he goes this weekend and realizes that he is just becoming more and more isolated and we're losing our standing in the world.

AVLON: Congresswoman, let's shift our focus to the border.

[08:35:00] You are the first Ecuadorian-American congresswoman, the first South American immigrant congresswoman. And your district in Florida contains Homestead, that infamous detention center.

Just a few moments ago, Ali interviewed Ken Cuccinelli. And I want to play you what he said about the administration's new policy in effect today allowing for the definite detention of migrants across the border. Take a listen.


KEN CUCCINELLI, ACTING DIRECTOR OF THE CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION SERVICES: This solves the problem by demonstrating to families that are considering coming to the southern border illegally that they will be detained for the -- until their hearings can be held.

This is a deterrent because they know that instead of rushing the border, which is what's been going on for a number of years now, they won't simply be released into the interior for us to never see them again.


AVLON: Indefinitely detention as a deterrent.

What's your take, congresswoman? MUCARSEL-POWELL: I have to tell you, John, I cannot believe that we

are actually having a debate on whether it is OK to imprison children in this country. As you mentioned, I have been advocating for the closure of this detention facility in Homestead, which was run by a for-profit company. John Kelly is on the board. I have mentioned this many times. So we are profiting from detaining children. We were paying -- this administration was paying close to $2 million to Calaburn (ph) to run the Homestead detention facility.

So there's another side to this story. They're opening detention facilities all over the country in rural areas, in places which are very difficult for immigration attorneys to go to. We have used other programs in the past under the Obama administration that worked very well. We can give these families monitoring devices.

But this is, again, an attack on immigrant communities. I represent an area which has -- half of the people that live in my district came from a different country. Like you mentioned, I am an immigrant. I came from a different country. We come here to work. We come here to contribute. We are doctors, nurses and, yes, we are also Congress members. And the continued attacks on immigrants and also violating a court ruling, is very worrisome. He has disregarded the three branches of -- the two branches of government, the legislative. Now he's disregarding the judicial. And you have to question what else is this president going to do? But we can't continue to dehumanize children and immigrant families that are coming to the border.

AVLON: Final question. You do represent a swing district. You defeated Carlos Curbelo, the former Republican incumbent, by 4,000 votes, razor thin. Are you concerned that the Democratic candidates, many of them, are in favoring a decriminalization of border crossings. Are you concerned politically and practically that that might create its own incentive of an escalation of this crisis at the border?

MUCARSEL-POWELL: You know, it was only one candidate that mentioned that. And I made my point very clear, that I don't think we need to change the statute or the law. What we need to do, and reminding this president also is, follow the rule of law.

I do worry that maybe the debate is focusing too much on issues that are really not affecting American people today. I mean I continue to talk to people in my community. They are struggling to make ends meet. Wages are not going up. In the House of Representatives, we actually passed a bill that would increase wages. And it's sitting in the Senate like so many other bills that we've sent to the Senate.

So I think that we need to come back and remember, what are the issues affecting us most? Our environment, rising health care costs, wages, not increasing at the rate that we need them to, affordability of housing. So those are the issues that I continue to talk to and I think the presidential candidates need to focus on as well.

AVLON: Congresswoman Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, thank you very much for joining us on NEW DAY.

MUCARSEL-POWELL: Thank you. CAMEROTA: All right, John, Halston helped redefine American fashion. So we preview the new CNN film on the meteoric rise and the sudden fall of this iconic designer, next.


[08:42:27] CAMEROTA: During the height of his fame in the 1970s, the name Halston was synonymous with fashion and style and glamour. And now the new CNN film, "Halston," looks at the iconic designer's meteoric rise to fame, his status as a ground-breaking stylist to the stars, as well as the ultimate loss of his fashion and lifestyle empire that mystified both industry insiders and the general public.

So here's a preview.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was dealing with the creme de la creme of women in the world.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Were you the person who put the pill box on Jackie Kennedy?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And that hat was genius. If you look at the inauguration, most of those ladies wore a mink coat. Jackie was in a cloth coat and a cloth hat.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'll never forget the impact that hat had. It was -- even out in Montana, where I was sitting at the time.

HALSTON: It was a very funny story, because it was a rather windy day and she put her hand on the hat and it ended up to have a dent in it. And so when -- during all the ceremonies, it had a dent in the hat. And everybody who copied it put a dent in it, which was so funny.


CAMEROTA: Really interesting back story.

So, joining us now to talk more about this is Joe Zee, fashion journalist and former creative director for "Elle," and all-around fabulous guy.

Great to have you here.

JOE ZEE, FASHION JOURNALIST: Thank you for having me.

CAMEROTA: So let's talk Halston. Before we get to his designs, you know, as we said, he was a household name in the '70s and '80s. But for people who aren't as familiar with him, what was so special about him as a designer?

ZEE: I mean Halston, as a person, was such a premier. And you have to understand that like this is the '70s and we are talking about an era in fashion where we were coming out of the hippie movement and disco and things were really flamboyant and big and, you know, they had really rang every bell in the world of fashion, and he stripped that all away.

You know, American fashion at the time was really about copying what was overseas. And European fashion was really about strict shapes and really sort of confined. And he just sort of freed all that. He wanted to do something for the woman that was really about liberating her body.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: What does that mean, exactly when you're talking about the designs? When someone says a Halston design, what would that be?

ZEE: It's really he -- I have to say, he really created the world of minimalism. So he did not add a button if it didn't need. He didn't add a zipper if it didn't need. He cut all the fabric on the bias (ph).

And if you really look at all of his designs, it's really just one piece of fabric that really cascades and drapes on a woman's body. So it's really about that elegance of it's being -- of it's moving and the flow of the movement. So like while every single thing else was -- in his world was really about like belting and cinching it in, he wanted to let it go. And I think you see a lot of that in influenced with designers today. Everyone from Calvin Klein to Tom Ford.

[08:45:09] CAMEROTA: And yet he is associated with more flamboyant stars and celebrities, right, like Liza Minnelli.

ZEE: Well, I think, you know, I think a lot of his sort of legacy is also wrapped up in Studio 54.


ZEE: Which, I have to say because --

CAMEROTA: Which was no minimalism there.

ZEE: No. I mean there's just no minimalism there for sure. But, I mean, his style and his design aesthetic really was a minimalism. But his world was part of Studio 54.

I wouldn't say that that's his complete legacy, but I think that's what people most know him for. And he was really surrounded by what they called the Halstonettes, which is really all those supermodels that really sort of flanked his runway and sat around him. And then, of course, Liza Minnelli, Bianca Jagger. He threw the famous birthday party for her at Studio 54 where she came in on the white horse. You know that was really all Halston.

CAMEROTA: That's fantastic.

BERMAN: Also models of color, right --

ZEE: Yes. BERMAN: Which was unusual at the time.

ZEE: It was completely a new thing in the world of fashion. I mean Celeron (ph) was sort of doing it in Paris, and Halston was the one who's championing it in America. And really not using one or two models of color, but really filling his runway with incredible beauties like Alva Chinn, Pat Cleland. Iman did her first show with Halston. These girls that really came to symbolize American fashion in a very different way globally.

CAMEROTA: And so then what happened to him? What happened? Why -- there was a demise.

ZEE: There was a demise. I think, you know, he sort of paved the way for what we know today as sort of -- sort of the hybrid of what fashion can be. He signed a huge billion dollar deal with JC Penny in the early '80s that allowed him to sort of really bring fashion to the masses. He wanted to dress America. But at the time, fashion was really about up here and down here. So you either were luxury or you dressed the masses. And he minute he signed that deal, everybody from Bergdorf Goodman dropped him overnight. And that's it. And his line at JC Penny was not even actually well received.

So while the deal was a huge sort of really groundbreaking move, it didn't work for him, but subsequently worked very well for designers that followed in his footsteps.

CAMEROTA: Wow, that's really interesting.

Well, Joe Zee, thanks so much for opening our eyes to all things Halston.

ZEE: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Great to see you.

Be sure to tune in to the CNN film "Halston." It premieres Sunday at 9:00 p.m. only on CNN.

So, what has been happening in the college admissions scandal and the legal battle of actress Lori Loughlin? "People" magazine tells us the real reason that she decided not to take a plea deal. That's next.


[08:51:36] CAMEROTA: So we're getting an inside look at how embattled actress Lori Loughlin is gearing up for her legal fight in the college admission scandal. Loughlin and her husband are expected back in court next week after pleading not guilty to conspiracy charges. A legal source close to the couple is now speaking out to "People" magazine in this new cover story that is out today. And inside you see Lori Loughlin with her daughters under the headline, ready to face their fate.

So joining us now is "People's" deputy digital editor Charlotte Triggs. Charlotte, great to have you here.


CAMEROTA: So I guess next week she learns her fate?

TRIGGS: Well, I mean, this is going to be the first of many, you know, legal obligations that she has.

CAMEROTA: Oh, because she's going to go to trial. So, in other words, she took a totally different track than Felicity Huffman, who pleaded guilty and is facing something like four months. And Lori Loughlin took a completely different tact and what is her future looking like now?

TRIGGS: Well, she took a big gamble here by proclaiming her innocence and pleading not guilty. And what happened was that the district attorney turned right around and charged her with additional charges of money laundering, her and her husband. So that means that they're facing now two separate charges that both carry possible 20-year sentence. So that's a 40 year -- 40 years of possible jail time. Although it would be unlikely that they would, you know, run back-to- back and not concurrently. It's hard time.

AVLON: But that's -- that's --

CAMEROTA: Twenty years.

AVLON: Yes, I mean --

CAMEROTA: Or 40 is a shocking number.

TRIGGS: Yes. It's a shocking amount.

AVLON: That's hard time for Aunt Becky. I'm not sure, you know, that's -- that's not part of the narrative. But here's the big question because your story says that she didn't necessarily think she was doing anything wrong. I mean this is a half million dollars to a fake charity to get your kids into USC. Granted she probably didn't think she was facing 40 years in jail. But that decision not to work with the authorities but to fight this seems to have blown up in her face.

TRIGGS: Well, it's a big risk and it's, you know, unclear how it's all going to play out for her. But she basically felt like what she was doing, according to sources, she felt that what she was doing was no different than donating a library or donating, you know, a new athletic field, which is a time-honored tradition of rich people to help get their kids into school. You know, the difference here is that, you know, there was fraudulent activity involved, fake designations of her children both as crew members, you know, on the crew team. They had to take fake pictures of themselves rowing to, you know, help get this designation and pass it through the athletic system there.

There was -- AVLON: And (INAUDIBLE) --


AVLON: You know, libraries are fine, direct donations, OK.


AVLON: Fraudulently pretending you're an athlete, not so much.

TRIGGS: Yes, and what turned out to be a completely fake charity as well.

CAMEROTA: But, I mean, you're saying that she's sticking with the defense of, we thought we were just contributing, we didn't know we were doing anything wrong?

TRIGGS: Yes. it's unclear whether they're going to actually be able to prove that there was something there. I mean there is -- you know, the problem is, all of these other people have been dropping like flies and pleading guilty. And the more out of this, you know, roster of people, the more people plead guilty and are willing to like, you know, turn over all their records and kind of lock it down. It's going to be very hard to claim that she didn't do anything.

CAMEROTA: Well, as the article makes clear, the daughters say they will be among the first to visit her in prison should she head that way. But we're looking at "Full House" turning into a "House of Cards." Yes, that happened.

CAMEROTA: You're really running with the "Full House" metaphors here.

AVLON: All day long.

CAMEROTA: But is -- do you have any reporter that she regrets not taking the Felicity Huffman route?

[08:55:02] TRIGGS: Well, a lot of people around her say that she is thinking about the fact that she could have perhaps already been on the road of just seeing this through and being done with it. Felicity Huffman, at least, knows what's going to happen to her. She's facing probably a recommended four months in prison. And whether she actually serves a full four months is unlikely.

She could have been in the same boat. She donated -- the amount of money that was in play was significantly more than in Felicity Huffman's case, so she would have been facing more jail time. But even a percentage of a two-year sentence would be much lower than a possible 40-year sentence.

CAMEROTA: All right, Charlotte Triggs of "People" magazine, thanks so much sharing what is out on newsstands today with us.

AVLON: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Great to talk to you. TRIGGS: Thanks for having me.

CAMEROTA: OK, so we do have breaking news.

Russia threatens the U.S. and China is threatening the U.S. China is actually retaliating with new tariffs. So "NEWSROOM" with Jim Sciutto has it all covered for you. That's next.

AVLON: A real as it gets.


[09:00:05] ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning. I'm Jim.