Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

Kentucky Voters Select Governor; Mississippi Voters Select Governor; Stone's Trial Starts Today; Contradicting Pompeo's Testimony; Man Stabbed over Sandwich. Aired 9:30-10a ET

Aired November 5, 2019 - 09:30   ET

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


[09:30:00]

POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: Is even a little bit critical of the impeachment inquiry, right? Bashear, the attorney general, said about the impeachment inquiry that he wants to see more of it happening in public. That's interesting.

EVAN MCMORRIS-SANTORO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, yes, the most interesting thing about being here is that this is a land where Democrats don't talk about the president and don't talk about impeachment.

I actually spoke with Beshear, the Democratic nominee, last night. I pressed him on the national race. I pressed him on impeachment. I asked him if he thought that the impeachment inquiry was helping him or hurting him. And he just doesn't want to talk about it. He wants to talk about education. He wants to talk about Medicaid. He wants to talk about Bevin and Bevin's rhetoric.

Democrats here would rather all the national stuff was not happening and the focus was on Kentucky itself.

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN ANCHOR: Yes. And you -- I've heard that from a lot of Democratic and Republican lawmakers, frankly, traveling around the country going back to their home districts.

Evan, welcome to the company. Nice to have you on.

HARLOW: Yes. Welcome onboard. Come back soon.

MCMORRIS-SANTORO: Yes. Thanks. Thank you so much.

HARLOW: All right, let's head to Mississippi, also a gubernatorial race there. Our Dianne Gallagher joins us this morning.

Where does that race stand?

DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, so it's a little surprising that we're coming to me in Mississippi right now. That this is such a contested race for governor. You have the current lieutenant governor, the Republican, Tate Reeves, going against the only statewide elected Democrat, the Attorney General Jim Hood. And much like Evan just said, this is kind of a national politics versus local and state politics race with the Democrat not really mentioning his party too much. In fact, if you see his ads, he's carrying shotguns, he's coming out of trucks. It doesn't look like what you would think your typical Democrats' ad would be.

Meanwhile, the president and the vice president have come in at the last minute to hold rallies and stump for Tate Reeves because for a lot of Mississippi Republicans, this race right now is too close for comfort.

SCIUTTO: Tell us about the election process there in the state of Mississippi because that could affect the results as well, could it not?

GALLAGHER: It really could. And it's something that's unique to say the least, but it makes it even more difficult for a Democrat to win a statewide election here for governor.

So here's the thing. You not only have to win the majority of the popular vote here, but you also have to win the majority of house districts. And let's say it's split. Well, then it goes to the legislature to decide. The legislature is Republican controlled. But, look, a lot of experts believe it would end up in court if that were the case here.

Right now Democrats are excited in Mississippi that they think there's even a chance it could be that tight. But it just adds yet another hurdle for someone from the minority party to try and win the governor's election here.

SCIUTTO: Goodness.

All right, Dianne Gallagher, great to have you on the story. We'll check in with you later.

We're about to get a unique look inside the president's 2016 campaign, as well as his inner circle, as longtime Trump confidant Roger Stone, you remember him, stands trial starting today.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[09:37:50]

SCIUTTO: Right now President Trump's longtime adviser and confidante, Roger Stone, is in federal court for his criminal trial on charges of obstructing justice, witness tampering and lying to Congress. Some close to the case are predicting it will be a circus. But there is a good chance this trial could offer new details and insight into President Trump's 2016 campaign.

Joining us now, CNN justice correspondent Jessica Schneider.

Tell us what we're going to see from this trial, including are we going to see Mr. Stone himself testify?

JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: That's still an unknown at this point, Jim, but jury selection begins this morning. Opening statements slated to start tomorrow. And then it really could be quite a cast of characters who take the witness stand, including that potential of Roger Stone himself testifying. We're not sure yet. But up to this point the bombastic former adviser to President Trump has really been precluded from talking to the media or even posting online. That's because of a gag order imposed by this judge. So we'll wait to see if Stone takes the stand in what is expected to be a two and a half week trial.

Now, Roger Stone is charged with seven counts, including obstruction of justice, witness tampering and lying to Congress. All of this revolving around whether he attempted to create a back channel to WikiLeaks, to obtain those hacked emails from the DNC server and then whether he lied to House investigators and even potentially intimidated other witnesses.

And, really, since this investigation was a segment of the Mueller probe, we could even hear from witnesses who might reveal some of the still-secret information that the special counsel uncovered about the campaign or even the president since we know that some of what was redacted in the Mueller report was actually specifically hidden so it wouldn't prejudice the jurors who were being chosen for Stone's trial today. So some of that information could now eventually come out.

And we're also, Jim, expecting some notable witnesses throughout this trial, including Steve Bannon, who, of course, was front and center on the Trump campaign and chief strategist at the White House. Plus, Rick Gates, who was the deputy campaign chairman and already a star witness at two previous trials related to the Mueller investigation.

So, really, Jim, a lot of tantalizing details could actually come out of this trial. Expected to last about two and a half weeks and it all begins with jury selection today.

Jim.

[09:40:05]

SCIUTTO: You mentioned the WikiLeaks effort. We know now from the notes of the Mueller investigation that the president explicitly said get those emails, the stolen Hillary Clinton emails.

SCHNEIDER: Right.

SCIUTTO: Jessica Schneider, thanks very much.

HARLOW: All right, so the week has already seen a record high for the Dow amid some growing concerns about how long this bull market can run. Just how strong is the broader U.S. economy and should we expect the Fed to cut rates more as the president keeps attacking the institution?

I sat down for an exclusive interview with Mary Daly. She is the president of the San Francisco Fed. And I asked her just that.

Here's a clip.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HARLOW: The president has called the Fed, quote, out of control, wrong, bone heads, no guts, no sense, no vision. Are you worried, Mary, about the independence of the Fed?

MARY DALY, PRESIDENT AND CEO, FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF SAN FRANCISCO: No. The reason I'm not worried is because our independence has been long standing since 1913. And the FOMC room is where we go to meet. And when you cross the threshold, there's a certain reverence. And politics literally never come up ever.

HARLOW: So you guys don't care what the president say insulting the Fed?

DALY: We don't talk about it.

HARLOW: You don't talk about it?

DALY: We never talk about it.

HARLOW: So to anyone who may be watching saying, well, I wonder if the Fed kept cutting rates because the president kept telling them to.

DALY: No. The answer is no. It's unequivocal.

HARLOW: And to the president saying that the Fed is putting the U.S. economy at a competitive disadvantage?

DALY: Our work is to calibrate monetary policy so that we can achieve the dual mandate goals. It's a narrow mandate, and we have one instrument and two goals, price stability and full employment. And we take that very seriously.

HARLOW: This is the longest economic expansion in American history.

DALY: Which is terrific.

HARLOW: And you think --

DALY: And look at how many people have been lifted up from it.

HARLOW: You think it's got a lot more muscle?

DALY: I do think we have more muscle. I think we have more room to run. I think there are more people we can bring from the sidelines into the labor market. They can get into jobs and get skills in training and experience.

HARLOW: What do you make of the manufacturing contraction, three straight months now?

DALY: Well, there's two things going to there that is really pushing on manufacturing, and also business investment. One is slower global growth. I mean I'd put that at the top of the list. And then also trade uncertainty.

HARLOW: What about the potential for a Midwest recession?

DALY: It's possible. It's very possible. But right now, if you look over the comments from the other regional Fed presidents who cover the Midwest, they're not seeing that kind of recession. They're seeing a slowdown for sure, but in their written comments that you can see publicly, they're not calling a recession even in their area. A recession is not, in my judgment, right around the corner.

HARLOW: OK.

DALY: But we are mindful of the slowdown.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HARLOW: That should make you feel good about the economy.

By the way, her story is remarkable. She didn't graduate from high school, dropped out at 15. Rose to head the largest of the Fed's banks. Only the second woman ever to do so.

You can hear the full interview with the San Francisco Fed Chief Mary Daly on my podcast "Boss Files."

All right, new witness testimony just released from closed door interviews is raising some serious questions about Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's very public statements. What impact does that have on the State Department, next?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[09:47:49]

HARLOW: Welcome back.

So the transcripts from Michael McKinley's testimony in the impeachment inquiry could prove to be an issue for the current Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. The former top State Department aid said under oath that he had spoken to Pompeo several times about the treatment of then U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch.

Here is part of that transcript. McKinley saying, quote, three probably, and in presenting my resignation, I made clear that I was looking to leave the department, I wasn't looking to create any news or story out of it, but that he should be aware that, of course, part of the reason people were very aware that I was concerned about what I saw as a lack of public support for department employees.

SCIUTTO: Now that would seem to contradict what Pompeo told ABC News in no uncertain terms last month.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MIKE POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE: From the time that Ambassador Yovanovitch departed Ukraine until the time that he came to tell me that he was departing, I never heard him say a single thing about his concerns with respect to the decision that was made. GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, ABC NEWS: So you were never asked to put out a --

POMPEO: Not once -- not once, George, did Ambassador McKinley say something to me during that entire time period.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCIUTTO: Admiral John Kirby served in the State Department, of course, as well as in the Navy.

You hold the State Department very dear. You spent a lot of good years there of your life working there.

Where do you see the secretary of state's credibility now on this issue?

REAR ADMIRAL JOHN KIRBY (RET.), CNN MILITARY AND DIPLOMATIC ANALYST: I think he's hurt himself additionally now, you know, more than he already had inside the State Department. You know some colleagues that I'm staying in touch with, and this is anecdotal, of course, they tell me that morale has definitely been diminished there over this whole Ukraine business, the phone call and the impeachment inquiry. Mostly because they feel like Mr. Pompeo isn't standing up for them, isn't speaking for them, isn't trying to represent them as a body.

And, frankly, you know, they're a little surprised by that because when he came in on the heels of Rex Tillerson, there was great hope and he came in and actually did really improve morale with some things that he did, policies he put in place to improve the lives and the careers of career foreign service officers and their families. So I think there's deep disappointment over the fact that he's been so silent about standing up for these career officials.

SCIUTTO: And, remember, the department of swagger, right, his term.

KIRBY: Yes.

HARLOW: There you go.

KIRBY: Yes.

HARLOW: And, Admiral Kirby, to Jim's point, which is an important one, this doesn't appear to be the only time that there is a major, you know, gap between what Pompeo has said on television and then what has been learned.

[09:50:10]

So you'll remember that during this interview on ABC, another one with Martha Raddatz, he had this to say about the Ukraine call before we actually learned that he was on the Ukraine phone call with the president. Here it is.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MARTHA RADDATZ, ABC NEWS: "The Wall Street Journal" is reporting that

President Trump pressed the president of Ukraine eight times to work with Rudy Giuliani to investigate Joe Biden's son.

What do you know about those conversations?

MIKE POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE: So you just gave me a report about a IC whistleblower complaint, none of which I've seen.

As for was I on the phone call, I was on the phone call. The phone call was in the context of now I guess I've been the secretary of state for coming on a year and a half. I know precisely what the American policy is with respect to Ukraine.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HARLOW: What does this tell you sort of big picture about the degree to which foreign policy may have been and becoming even more transactional and personally focused rather than just U.S. foreign policy.

KIRBY: Yes, there's two dynamics here. One is, I don't -- it's perplexing to see Mike Pompeo go from sort of brushing this off and being vague about it and sort of just, you know, not professing to know much about this call and the context of it --

HARLOW: Right.

KIRBY: And then to being a full-on defender of President Trump's latest narrative about this call and actually Pompeo calling for an investigation of Biden, supporting that, and also supporting a claim that Ukraine was involved in meddling when at CIA he was saying it was clearly Russia.

SCIUTTO: Yes.

KIRBY: So he's moved -- he's moved his own goalpost significantly.

And then to your second point, Poppy, which is a good one. I mean all this whole impeachment inquiry does to me is underscore the degree to which foreign policy has not only become fully on transactional in this administration, but full on personal.

SCIUTTO: Yes.

KIRBY: That it is about Donald Trump and his personal interests, rather than him looking after the interests of the country and the country's values.

SCIUTTO: Well, you mentioned one of the most alarming ones here, and that is him pushing what is a conspiracy theory, that it was Ukraine not Russia that interfered, that stole the DNC server. As you said, he was the CIA director. He saw the intelligence of that high confidence assessment there.

KIRBY: Absolutely. SCIUTTO: Tell us what that does to his credibility. He endorsed that assessment as CIA director --

KIRBY: Yes.

SCIUTTO: And now he is using the instruments of government to pursue what is a conspiracy theory.

KIRBY: Yes, it doesn't help his credibility at all. I mean when he was CIA director, and, Jim, you know this better than anybody, he was full on absolutely concurred with the recommendation and the idea that Russia was behind the meddling. He never once said anything about Ukraine.

Now all of a sudden, because that's the Trump narrative, he's all in on Ukraine. So it definitely does hurt his credibility. But it makes it all the more perplexing as to where he stands.

And this is what our allies and partners need to understand about dealing with the United States on a foreign policy perspective, they need to be able to trust us, they need to be able to rely on our word and our credibility. And his credibility and the credibility of the administration is definitely being damaged by this.

SCIUTTO: Retired Rear Admiral John Kirby, thanks very much, as always.

KIRBY: You bet.

SCIUTTO: Well, this is an alarming story we're covering today, a fight over a Popeye's chicken sandwich.

HARLOW: Yes.

SCIUTTO: It turned deadly in Maryland. We're going to have the details, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[09:58:06]

HARLOW: A terrible story to report this morning.

Right now police in Maryland are searching for a killer following, if you can believe it, a deadly fight over a Popeye's chicken sandwich.

Jean Casarez is here with the details.

I can't believe this.

JEAN CASAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: No, it's horrible. It's absolutely horrible.

And here are the facts as we know them from police.

It was about 7:00 last night. It was in Maryland. It was a very crowded Popeye's. It was the Popeye's brand new sandwich was being finally disseminated and people were standing in line. Two men started to get into a fight and they believe, police say preliminarily, that it was over the sandwich. Why? Because the line itself was to get that particular sandwich.

So the fight went outside. One man took out a knife. He stabbed the other man. Somebody called 911. The perpetrator was gone. They came, lifesaving maneuver, they took him to the hospital and 51 minutes later that 28-year-old man was gone. He was dead.

Police in St. George -- Prince George's County, Maryland, they gave a statement last night.

Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JENNIFER DONELAN, SPOKESWOMAN, PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT: This is related to the release of the sandwich.

For you to get that angry over anything, for that type of anger to develop into this type of violence again is a very sad and tragic day. And that person needs to turn themselves in.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CASAREZ: Now, Popeye's has released a statement. We want to read this to you. It says, we are very sad to hear about the tragedy in Maryland tonight. We do not know yet whether this was the result of a dispute over one of our products or something unrelated, but there is no reason for someone to lose their life on a Monday night in a parking lot. Our thoughts are with the victim's family and friends and we are fully cooperating with local authorities.

And, Jim and Poppy, they are asking the perpetrator to come forward, you know who you are, and also anyone in that restaurant that can give identifying characteristics because he's on the loose.

[10:00:07]

HARLOW: My goodness.

SCIUTTO: Jean Casarez, thanks very much.

CASAREZ: Thank you.

END