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NEW DAY SATURDAY

White House Officials Testify Quid Pro Quo Was Coordinated With Mulvaney; President Trump To Attend LSU-Alabama Game This Afternoon; Two White House Officials Describe "Blatant" Push For Politically- Motivated Probes From Trump; Trump Called Gordon Sondland A "Great American," Now He Says "I Hardly Know The Gentleman"; John Bolton's Lawyer Says He Has "Relevant" Information To Share; Bannon: Trump Campaign Saw Stone As Access Point To WikiLeaks; 30 Years Since The Berlin Wall Was Torn Down; Top Dem Candidates Visit Key Early Voting States This Weekend; Bloomberg Files In Alabama For Democratic Primary; Suspect Charged In Death Of Clark Atlanta University Student; Thirty Million People Under Freeze Warnings Across Eastern U.S. Aired 6-7a ET

Aired November 9, 2019 - 06:00   ET

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


[06:00:00]

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is CNN, the most trusted name in news.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Democrat's impeachment push is moving quickly.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Two of the most central players in the relationship with Ukraine putting the president's chief of staff at the center of the scandal. A source tells CNN that lawyers for President Trump's former national security adviser are in talks with the three committees leading the inquiry about being deposed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: John Bolton has information about events, meetings and conversations that have not been discussed in the testimonies so far.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It's just a hoax. This is just like the Russian witch hunt.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: President Trump travels to his third major sporting event in recent weeks. Saturday's matchup between Alabama and Louisiana State University is another chance to prove he's still a fan favorite.

TRUMP: I love Alabama. I'm going to go watch a very good football game.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Well, good morning and welcome to the weekend. I'm Christi Paul.

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Martin Savidge in for Victor Blackwell.

PAUL: Good to have you here, Martin. So we want to begin with major new information in the impeachment inquiry from two top-level White House officials. Newly released transcripts put acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney right at the center of the Ukraine scandal.

SAVIDGE: Plus, the attorney for former White House National Security Advisor John Bolton, he is teasing lawmakers and the White House. He says that Bolton has personal knowledge of relevant information about the scandal that has never been heard.

PAUL: And President Trump today headed to Tuscaloosa for the SEC showdown between LSU and Alabama. It's going to be his third appearance at a major sports event in just the past two weeks.

SAVIDGE: Meanwhile, let's go straight to CNN correspondent Kristen Holmes and Kristen, the latest transcripts released may not be good news for the acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, will it?

KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Martin and Christi. Well, that's absolutely right. So on the same day that he didn't show up for his House testimony, despite the fact that he was subpoenaed, we get this document dump and it comes from these two key characters, White House -- the former White House Russia expert Fiona Hill and the current NSC Ukraine expert Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, both of them painting a picture of a blatant quid pro quo and on top of that, putting Mick Mulvaney in the center.

And I want to pull up exactly what Fiona Hill said because she really lays it out here. She writes, "Sondland, in front of the Ukrainians," and Sondland, of course, is the ambassador to the European Union. "Sondland, in front of the Ukrainians, as I came in, was talking about how he had an agreement with Chief of Staff Mulvaney for a meeting with the Ukrainians if they were going to go forward with investigations and my director for Ukraine was looking completely alarmed."

So obviously now House committees still wanting to talk to the chief of staff. We did learn last night that Mick Mulvaney is trying to join a lawsuit that wants a federal court to decide whether or not he's going to testify in front of the committee, saying he needs them to tell him whether he should defy the White House or defy these House committees.

PAUL: So Kristen, President Trump, he seems to be distancing himself from people in the administration. I mean, at one point he had characterized Gordon Sondland as a great American and apparently now he says he hardly knows him.

HOLMES: Yes. Christi, this is --

PAUL: Could you reconcile that for us?

HOLMES: Yes. This was actually one of the more shocking things that came out of this long kind of gaggle he did on his way to the Alabama football game. He essentially, you know, was asked about Gordon Sondland, who we know is one of the other key characters at the center of this entire Ukrainian pressure campaign here, and he said he barely knows the guy.

Well, this is the strategy President Trump has taken since day one. Remember Paul Manafort, the chief of his campaign? He barely knew Paul Manafort. He barely was involved in the campaign and this is something that we see President Trump do over and over again, but that's not all he said. He was asked about all of this testimony that's being released, he was asked about what's going to come next with these public hearings and here's what he had to say.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I'm not concerned about anything. The testimony has all been fine. I mean, for the most part, I never even heard of these people. I have no idea who they are. They're some very fine people. You have some never Trumpers. It seems that nobody has any first-hand knowledge. There is no first-hand knowledge and all that matters is one thing, the transcript and the transcript is perfect.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOLMES: OK. So obviously no surprise there. Transcript is perfect. We've heard that over and over again, but one thing I want to note is that we do have people who have testified who have first-hand knowledge. You had Gordon Sondland testifying about his own experience with the president, with Mick Mulvaney and we also had Lieutenant Colonel Vindman who was on that call who actually prepared talking points for the president for that call, which he said the president did not use.

SAVIDGE: Interesting stuff. Kristen Holmes, thank you very much. We'll talk to you later.

PAUL: All right. Let me bring in Errol Louis here to talk about what's going on. Errol, good to see you this morning. Thank you.

[06:05:00]

ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Good morning, Christi.

PAUL: Good morning to you as well. All right, I want to talk about the testimony from Vindman and Hill because the two things here that are really pertinent that are both testifying that that hold on the aid money to Ukraine did come from Mulvaney. What do you make of the -- and the other thing of course that Mulvaney coordinated this request for Ukraine to announce an investigation in exchange for that oval office meeting with the president? What do you make of the fact that we have had Giuliani saying he's a central figure in this, now Mulvaney? Do you expect we will hear from him?

LOUIS: From Mick Mulvaney? No. I'd be very surprised. I mean, look, the reality is there are a number of extraordinary claims that this administration is making, saying that they have no reason to respond to a valid, lawful congressional subpoena, that's mostly bravado, that's mostly, frankly, trash. But when it comes to the chief of staff, to the President of the United States, there can be some claims of executive privilege that are in sort of a different category than the rest of the folks who are not responding to congressional subpoenas. So I'd be very surprised if they actually get Mick Mulvaney there.

On the other hand, they may not need him to do what it is they need to do. There's one school of thought that says they ought to just kind of issue a blanket contempt finding for anybody who doesn't answer the subpoenas and just move forward because the reality is, you don't necessarily need Mr. Mulvaney to really clarify step-by-step exactly what happened if you hear from all of the people around him who testify under oath, credibly and factually with dates and times and nuances that he, who, by the way, as the -- as the OMB director, would know exactly how to move money, freeze money or otherwise sort of make something like this happen, they're all saying that he did it and Congress, I think, has the information that they need.

PAUL: Yes. There are -- there are enough things that are corroborating a lot of this I suppose when you come down to it. New as well, Representative Jim Jordan now is heading to the House Intel Committee. We know that the House Republican leader, Kevin McCarthy, made that happen. How do you think that's going to change the dynamics of what happens next week?

LOUIS: Well, look, next week is going to be a frustrating exercise, I think, for viewers. We'll all be watching of course, but what it signals is that Jim Jordan is there -- we've seen him in action before in many other kind of similar hearings -- there to sort of throw fairy dust, to stop things, to attack people, challenge their credibility and so forth, to essentially be the defense counsel for the administration and for the president personally.

He's very energetic about it, he's very forceful about it and I think it will stop people from kind of running away with some narrative that sort of is credible and reliable. All of the facts kind of point in one direction, Jim Jordan will be there to try and just stop the Democrats from getting any kind of momentum in building their narrative.

PAUL: Before I let you go, I want to ask you about former national security adviser John Bolton, his attorney saying that he has relevant information to Ukraine that's related to that and that that's information that hasn't yet been disclosed. It's a great tease --

LOUIS: Yes.

PAUL: -- but are we going to hear from Bolton?

LOUIS: This is -- this is -- I mean, this is Bolton -- to me, it's a reminder that Bolton is this very skilled bureaucratic in-fighter. He's been in public service in the State Department, in national security, in the Justice Department since the Reagan administration. This is somebody who knows exactly what he is doing and the unceremonious firing of John Bolton probably rankled him a little bit and this is his way of letting all of us know that he's relevant and he's not necessarily going to be a team player.

So I think the White House is probably a little bit nervous about what he might say or do. I know Congress would love to hear from him and he's letting folks know that, you know, people need to come to him and have a conversation.

PAUL: And pretty sure somebody will somewhere.

LOUIS: Absolutely.

PAUL: Errol Louis, appreciate you. Thank you for being here. Hey, he's not going to go anymore, by the way. He's back with us in just a couple of minutes to talk about Michael Bloomberg's possible run for the White House.

LOUIS: Thanks.

SAVIDGE: Former White House chief of -- strategist rather, Steve Benton, testified Friday that the Trump campaign saw Roger Stone as an access point to WikiLeaks. Stone is a longtime associate of the President. Bannon said during the 2016 campaign, Stone implied that WikiLeaks had materials that would help Donald Trump and possibly hurt Hillary Clinton's chance at the presidency. Stone's charged with lying to Congress, witness tampering and obstructing justice, charges that stem from Robert Mueller's Russia investigation.

PAUL: Remembering the symbolic end to the Cold War 30 years later, Germany looking back at the fall of the Berlin Wall. CNN's Frederik Pleitgen is live in Germany.

SAVIDGE: Plus, another billionaire -- I'm sorry, Fred. Go.

[06:10:00]

Let's go on. Another billionaire is going to hop into the race for the White House. Could Michael Bloomberg be a viable candidate?

PAUL: And a school resource deputy caught on camera pulling a girl's hair back as he takes her into custody, the action that is being taken now against that officer.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SAVIDGE: Happening now, Germany marking 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall which paved the way for the reunification of the country.

PAUL: Yes. You see German Chancellor Angela Merkel there. She's among the leaders from Central and Eastern Europe who are taking part in the ceremonies today. Now, this wall was built in 1961. It marked the split between East and West and was lined with watchtowers, electric fences, armed guards. Well, on November 9th, 1989, people from both sides swarmed to chip away at that wall that divided their city. Frederik Pleitgen is with us now from Berlin. Frederik, who's there today?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, what you have there today is obviously the leaders of Germany, Angela Merkel, the President of Germany as well and then also leaders of Central European countries who of course were so important in bringing the wall down as well and undermining communism, but one of the main things that they're doing today is they're remembering of course the wall as it came down, but also how devastating the wall was and how dangerous the wall was to the people who were living behind it. Here's what we're learning.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[06:15:06]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The line of demarcation in the Cold War lies in Berlin.

PLEITGEN: For 28 years, the Berlin wall symbolized the struggle between capitalism and communism and the cruel division between the people of East and West Berlin.

RONALD REAGAN, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.

PLEITGEN: So here at CNN, we actually own our own CNN Trabant. This was the epitome of communist East German automotive engineering and for the anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, what we're going to do is we're going to take this car and take a drive back into history that is if I fit into the car because it's small and I'm big. Ready to go.

The remnants of the wall are a tourist attraction nowadays, but this deadly barrier with border guards, observation towers and barbed wire struck fear into the Berliners it divided. I stop and pick up Peter Bieber who grew up in East Germany despising the communist regime and the wall it needed to keep people from fleeing into the West.

PETER BIEBER, ESCAPED EAST GERMANY: You look and saw the wall and, you know, it's end.

PLEITGEN: Yes.

BIEBER: It's end of the world. You can't go where you want.

PLEITGEN: As a young man, Peter Bieber attempted to flee East Germany several times until he finally succeeded in 1972. He then helped others get out as well until he was betrayed and arrested by East Germany's secret police, the Stasi, and spent five years in jail there.

BIEBER: It was a little psychological terror.

PLEITGEN: Psychological terror.

BIEBER: Yes. I sit in a little room, not so light, and one month, two month, and nobody came and said anything.

PLEITGEN: The West German government eventually paid East Germany to release Peter Bieber, but many others who tried to get away paid with their lives, more than 100 of them in Berlin. In 1989, East Germans had had enough. After wave of mass protests, the regime opened the wall leading to mass celebrations as people from all over the world joined in to literally tear down the wall.

BIEBER: I think about the freedom. That's, for me, the highest -- the highest point for people to (ph) --

PLEITGEN: The highest point. Yes.

BIEBER: Yes.

PLEITGEN: Highest good that people can have is freedom. Yes.

Thirty years later, a united Berlin is thriving, having shed the shackles of communism and dismantled the wall many thought could never be breached.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PLEITGEN: And guys, I have to explain one of the reasons why there was so much honking before I went to air. Actually, on the other side of the road, there's a demonstration of East German cars that are going past. These are all Trabants and similar cars that people drove in communism and of course very much are the symbol of what happened in Germany -- in East Germany under communism and then also the fall of communism as well.

And guys, I also have to tell you guys that the coolest of these cars is actually owned by us because CNN has its own communist car. This is the CNN Trabant. I actually drive this car. I fit into this car. It's difficult, but I make it happen. So one of the main attractions here is also us in these celebrations and as you can see, a lot of people turning out in the city, generally quite a jubilant mood today 30 years after the wall came down.

SAVIDGE: That's great to see, Fred. I'd actually ask you to demonstrate getting in the vehicle, but I don't think we have the time for that.

PLEITGEN: I can do that. Do we have -- if we have time, I'll do it. If we have time, I'll do it. If they'll make time, just let me know. I can already -- I'll start going around. We can --

PAUL: All right. Go ahead.

PLEITGEN: I'll do it. Here we go. Watch this. So this is the car if you (ph) come around. It's extremely difficult.

PAUL: Fred, how tall are you? Just how tall are you?

PLEITGEN: I'm 6 foot 5. I'm 6 foot 5.

SAVIDGE: He's going to bend it in half to get in.

PLEITGEN: So watch this. I try to get in. The big problem is always the foot, right? So the leg is just way too long --

PAUL: Oh, my goodness.

PLEITGEN: -- and then I get in like this. Yes. Yes.

SAVIDGE: He's in.

PLEITGEN: It's 45 horsepower. Yes. I can't get out though.

PAUL: Oh, Fred, you are a sport.

SAVIDGE: Yes. You are.

PLEITGEN: Cool. I'll see you guys.

SAVIDGE: Thank you.

PLEITGEN: Maybe next hour I'll get out. See you guys.

PAUL: All right.

SAVIDGE: Fred Pleitgen with his motor trend report there. Thank you very much.

PAUL: Thank you, Fred. All right, let's talk about the 2020 election because it could include a battle of the billionaires at this point. Former New York City Mayor, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, adding his name to Alabama's Democratic primary ballot. So how does this change things up now?

[06:20:01]

SAVIDGE: Plus this, caught in the middle of an inferno, incredible video, firefighters trying to get out of a wildfire that suddenly surrounded their truck. We'll explain where this is and what's going on.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SAVIDGE: Top 2020 Democratic candidates are making their pitch to voters across the country this week.

PAUL: They're covering ground in some of the key early voting states including Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina.

SAVIDGE: Meanwhile, billionaire Michael Bloomberg, he's shaking that 2020 race up. the former New York City Mayor filed paperwork Friday adding his name to Alabama's Democratic primary ballet. A spokesperson for Bloomberg said he also plans to file in Arkansas, but will skip the first four primaries. Still, Bloomberg has not said that he's officially entering the race for the White House, but that would surely be an indicator.

Let's discuss with Errol Louis. He's back with me now. Also Azi Paybarah, senior reporter for "Politico." Good morning to the two of you. LOUIS: Good morning.

AZI PAYBARAH, NEW YORK METRO REPORTER, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": Good morning.

SAVIDGE: Azi, let me ask you this. Some have suggested if Bloomberg gets in, and it seems like he definitely is going to get in, that this signals there is trouble with the current Democratic candidates, at least from his perspective, that he doesn't believe anybody can win, but him.

[06:25:00]

PAYBARAH: Well, Michael Bloomberg has had a long history of sort of being a moderate or casting himself in that case and what you're seeing in the Democratic primary is Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren really riding the sort of strength of the progressive movement and Joe Biden being more of the moderate candidate. If Joe Biden starts to slip or recede, Michael Bloomberg wants to sort of be there and stand in and say hey, look, if you're a moderate, if you're a voter in the Democratic primary, I'm one of your options.

SAVIDGE: Errol, do you think that this is an indication that Bloomberg has sort of looked at the math, looked at maybe Joe Biden not doing as well as many thought he would at this particular time, Buttigieg he perhaps doesn't believe is going to be able to make it with all (ph) voters and that he is going to be that good alternative for the middle?

LOUIS: Well, yes. There's a path. It's a very narrow path, it's sort of an unlikely path, but right, when we look at the polling (ph), you don't have to have all of the data, analytics and Michael Bloomberg's command to see that Joe Biden is in considerable trouble. We see him fading in the polls. In Iowa, I think he's down to about 15 percent. It creates, for Bloomberg, a possibility.

If what we're looking for is somebody who has executive management experience, the person who, for 12 years, was mayor of the largest city in the country kind of blows away Pete Buttigieg who's the mayor of a city of -- was the mayor of a city of 100,000, 101,000. So Bloomberg, I think, sees that he's got a possibility. I think where they're going to have probably the hardest time though, Martin, is bypassing the first four primary and caucuses.

SAVIDGE: Right.

LOUIS: I mean, it's very, very hard, once the narrative sets in and CNN and the other channels are all roaring about who seems to be emerging --

PAYBARAH: Right.

LOUIS: -- and moving forward and all that that entails, it's hard to buy your way back in after something like that.

SAVIDGE: Yes. Yes. It is indeed. OK. Well, "New York Times" senior (ph) reporter Azi Paybarah and Errol Louis, thanks very much for joining us.

LOUIS: Thank you.

PAYBARAH: Thanks.

PAUL: Well, the Eastern U.S., get ready folks, with a hit of an early taste of winter. Millions of you are waking up to extremely cold temperatures, I'm sorry to say. I'm just the messenger remember, and this apparently is just a rehearsal for what's expected to come.

SAVIDGE: Plus, outrage in Florida after a school resource officer is caught on camera pulling a girl's hair back as he takes her into custody.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[06:30:00]

SAVIDGE: Welcome back. I want to bring back our guests Errol Louis and Azi Paybarah to continue our conversation about Michael Bloomberg and what looks like a pretty good chance he's going to be running again in the Democratic side.

Azi, let me ask you this. One of the things as a great measure, you've got sort of the battle of the billionaires now that's likely to go on. Let me just show you the wealth numbers when it comes to comparison of Bloomberg versus the president of the United States. And there you see it. You've got $52 billion versus the president's worth which is put at about $3.1 billion.

PAYBARAH: Right --

SAVIDGE: It's a great trolling point, I'm sure.

PAYBARAH: Yes --

SAVIDGE: But you know wealth is going to play into this. It could work both for and against Bloomberg, couldn't it?

PAYBARAH: Right, the thing that Michael Bloomberg would argue is that he made his own whereas Donald Trump sort of inherited some of his, and reported by some of my colleagues called into question exactly how some of that money was accumulated. But Michael Bloomberg points to his finances, points to his fortune as sort of his resume.

He says I've made this kind of money, I'm a good manager and therefore, that is what helped him get into city hall. He relied on his acumen as a business person and sort of sold that to voters and voters were willing to take a chance on someone they did not know that well in part because of that resume.

When you line up those numbers with Donald Trump, I'm sure it's something that may raise a lot of eyebrows and for most people, it's numbers they can't even fathom. But that difference is something that Michael Bloomberg is going to be relying on if he does enter the race. SAVIDGE: And Errol, you know, wealth is not necessarily measure of

who is appropriate to be president of the United States. But it's clearly going to stick in the craw of the president, don't you think?

LOUIS: Oh, sure, in fact, he's already, I think started with the juvenile nicknames and so forth to attack former Mayor Bloomberg. The reality though is what most matters is not the billions and billions that either of them have access to, but that Michael Bloomberg has shown over the years that he's willing to spend tens of millions of dollars without blinking.

That's what he did to get himself elected first as mayor, and to get re-elected. I think the first race was something like $74 million. He just -- you know, just kind of wrote checks. He won't have to waste much time going to fundraisers, that's for sure. You can look at his source in the mirror every morning, and if he deploys it wisely, he can, in fact, I think create some instant credibility on the ground.

Again though, it's a very narrow path to try and get where he wants to get to, which is the Democratic nomination.

SAVIDGE: And real quick --

PAUL: Yes --

SAVIDGE: Azi, before we go, I want to show you this poll "Fox News" did, basically, it's implying that if Bloomberg gets in, who else might be considering? And there you see some of the frontrunners, they thought Michelle Obama had apparently 50 percent of those polls, definitely and Michael Bloomberg was at the bottom of the list -- Hillary Clinton.

Is it possible this could just be the tip of the iceberg that we'll see other Democrats jump in?

PAYBARAH: I think you might hear some noise about it. But really, it's about putting together an organization, having the resource to do it and entering. I think what you're seeing there is voters' interest, you know, interest is very different than actually, you know, who you're going to support either by donating.

But I think what Democrats are doing is casting a wide net, looking what's out there. But I think by the time the primaries end, the party is going to sort of solidify or that's what many people in the party are hoping. And right now, there are so many candidates who had 20-something on stage.

[06:35:00]

It's whittling down to people who are looking to get in. I think people are still shopping around for the candidates they want to settle on.

SAVIDGE: New York Times Metro reporter Azi Paybarah and Errol Louis, thank you both for joining us this morning, always good to have conversations with you.

PAYBARAH: Thank you, Martin.

LOUIS: Thanks.

PAUL: Well, police have made an arrest in the disappearance and death of a college student in Atlanta. Now Barron Brantley is accused of killing 21-year-old Alexis Crawford. Police were lead to her body yesterday just over a week since she was reported missing from her off-campus apartment at Clark Atlanta University.

Now, police say she accused Brantley of sexual assault a few days before she disappeared. They also want to speak to Brantley's girlfriend Jordan Jones who was Crawford's roommate.

A school resource deputy in Florida is off the job after he was caught on camera pulling a girl's hair back as he took her into custody.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Relax.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is not good.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm not yelling at you, calm down, hey, relax.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Chill out! You're the one who started this -- in school.

(SCREAMING)

I'm tired of this --

(SCREAMING)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAVIDGE: The Orange County sheriff's office says the school deputy was breaking up a fight between teens in an apartment parking lot. He can also be heard shouting, quote, "you're all stupid little children", unquote, at the crowd around them. The sheriff says there's no doubt the deputy's actions went too far.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOHN MINA, SHERIFF, ORANGE COUNTY, FLORIDA: That deputy's behavior and actions violated many policies, our standards, but more importantly the vision and expectations that I have set as sheriff and definitely will not be tolerated.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PAUL: The deputy isn't currently facing any charges, but the incident is under an internal investigation. All right, if you live in the east, get ready for Winter because whether you like it or not, you're going to feel it as soon as you open the door. This morning right now, some 30 million of you are under freeze warnings.

It's going to get even colder on Monday, so, hey, enjoy the warmth of the weekend, maybe not. We could see record low temperatures in basically every state east of the Rockies from Monday to Wednesday.

SAVIDGE: CNN's Allison Chinchar is tracking this and first of all, I want to know, Allison, how low is the temperatures going to go, and secondly, does this portend how Winter is going to be?

PAUL: Yes --

ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Well, I guess it depends on what your vision of what you plan for Winter to be. Some people look forward to this season, so they don't mind the cold temperatures. Now, to your other question of how cold is it going to get, a lot of places are going to be well below freezing.

You're talking over 200 million people looking at temperatures at or below freezing over the next seven days. Here's just a few of them dealing with freeze warnings this morning. Yes, that includes cities as far south as Atlanta or even Charlotte, North Carolina. This is what you're waking up to. It feels like 22 degrees right now in Charlotte, 29 is the feels-like temperature in Atlanta, even Detroit and Chicago feeling right around 20 to 21 degrees.

Here's the thing. East of the -- east of the Rockies, temperatures all well below average the next few days. Quite a difference out west though, dealing with temperatures well above average. This does not bode well for a lot of the California wildfires because we all know that those hot dry conditions are what helps spread a lot of those fires.

But it's in the east, because once that cold air sets up, that means any of these systems that slide through also have the potential to bring some snow. And that's what we're going to see starting Sunday, pushing Monday and Tuesday, look at this. Snow perhaps is far south is Nashville as this system slides through.

Now, the good news is we're not talking excessive amounts of accumulation here. Most areas likely to get maybe 4 to 6 inches at absolute best. It's the cold that's really going to be concerning. Look at this, over 240 possible records set the next few days, but how cold is it going to get?

This is going to be the big concern. Take a city like Minneapolis for example. Look at the huge dip that you're going to be seeing, starting today, going from 43 down to look at that, single digits by the middle portion of the upcoming week in terms of low temperatures. But it's not the only city.

Again, we've got several -- even as you start to go, say a little bit farther down to the south, say toward St. Louis, same thing, Christi and Martin, you've got temperatures going from the 60s all the way down into the mid teens. So, it's going to be cold, but keep in mind too, it's going to stay there for a couple of days.

So, make sure you have all your Winter gear out and ready to go for the upcoming week.

PAUL: All right, Allison, thank you. These two are hired people sitting here going, I remember those days --

SAVIDGE: I do remember it very well, yes --

PAUL: Yes --

SAVIDGE: Thank you.

PAUL: Oh, the incredible video we have for you here out of Australia this morning. Firefighters are still struggling to contain what they're calling unprecedented deadly brushfires. Look at this.

[06:40:00]

This was the firefighters who were driving through an absolute inferno as you can see.

SAVIDGE: Yes, it just doesn't even look real. Scenes like this are real though, and they're playing out across the Australian state of New South Wales. At least, three people are dead and seven others are missing.

Officials say at least a 100 homes have been destroyed, and they're afraid that the dry conditions there could worsen what is already an incredible fire threat. Still to come, Georgia's 6th congressional district which was once reliably red flipped blue in 2018. Now Republicans are looking for an upset in 2020 to take it back. But how do Georgians feel about that?

PAUL: First, though, in this week's episode of "DECLASSIFIED", with the help of an undercover source, the DEA's Special Operation Division launches an international manhunt to capture one of the most prolific Russian arms dealers in the world. Here's a preview.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: After the meeting, Carlos said, hey, he pulled me aside when we were walking back from a meal and said, who we went to see.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In my -- and so that you know that it's just opinion, is it a good --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why did he do that?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know. He was trying to impress me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But it also in his mind show that he had a righteous arms trafficker that could supply to them, and he would get some percentage of whatever the deal was going to be.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Once Somalien (ph) said Victor Boot (ph), then we knew that we are in, but that's only part of it. We can have all the meetings with Andrew Somalien (ph), but if we don't have a sit-down meeting with Victor Boot (ph), we're not going to get what we need. All their efforts from that moment on, were to get Victor to come in and have a meeting with Carlos and Commandante (ph), and that's where we encountered some curveballs.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PAUL: Watch the CNN original series "DECLASSIFIED." It's tomorrow at 11:00 p.m. Eastern only here on CNN.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[06:45:00]

SAVIDGE: Last Fall, Democratic Lucy McBath shocked the political establishment by winning Georgia's Republican leading six Congressional district. Now, in 2020, Democrats believe McBath can win again. But the Republicans are hoping to re-flip the district, and now both parties feel the impeachment inquiry against the president is the path to victory.

I spoke with Georgia voters in the 6th about how they feel heading into this election season.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE (voice-over): Democrat's Lucy McBath's victory last Fall in Georgia's 6th Congressional District wasn't just significant, it was seismic. How do I know? Because this is my district. I've lived in the 6th for over 20 years ago. Located in Atlanta's northern suburbs decades ago, it brought America's Newt Gingrich.

Mitt Romney and John McCain carried the 6th comfortably, President Trump by only a single point.

(on camera): McBath is the first Democrat to win here in 40 years, and her victory helped Democrats win back the house.

TAMARA STEVENS, GEORGIA 6TH DISTRICT VOTER: Electing Lucy, that was just the beginning.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): Driving that historic flip, a growing army of activists, college-educated, mostly mothers, some Georgia natives, others transplants, some even from other parties.

STEVENS: Some husband tells everyone, I am a gun -- I was a gun- toting, cymbal(ph)-listening Republican.

SAVIDGE: But like the district, Tamara Stevens has changed.

STEVENS: Honestly, I do not recognize the Republican Party of today.

SAVIDGE: Stevens actively campaigned for McBath and she definitely believes the president should be impeached even though she knows it will energize Republican voters, she's not worried.

STEVENS: We are on a roll and there's a whole wave of women that had been activated even since Lucy's election.

SAVIDGE: Impeachment looms large here because Lucy McBath is one of those house Democrats elected in a Trump-voting district where impeachment is a tight-rope walk especially since McBath serves on the House Judiciary Committee.

STEVENS: She has kept her head down and she has continued to work, and that is -- and that's the thing that Republicans -- they can't -- they can't -- they can't argue with that.

SAVIDGE: Actually they do.

DEBBIE FISHER, GEORGIA VOTER: I think it is a sham, and it's not as much the impeachment itself as the process that they're going to -- that is unprecedented in the history of this country.

SAVIDGE: Debbie Fisher is also a politically active 6th District suburbanite and she sees the impeachment issue completely different. Joining protesters outside McBath's local congressional office.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She doesn't want to hear from people.

SAVIDGE: She believes Americans are suffering from Trump investigation fatigue, and the impeachment inquiry will backfire on Democrats, hurting McBath's re-election hopes.

FISHER: I see more Democrats, more moderates and the Democrat Party coming this way and more independents coming Trump's way because of the tactics that have been used in trying to unseat our president.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE: Lucy McBath's victory was historic, it was also incredibly close. She won by just 3,200 votes, which is why Republicans believe they could flip the district back. What really is at play here is how impassioned, how motivated are 6th district voters on either side going to be? The answer to that is likely going to determine the outcome of the election here. Christi?

PAUL: All right, good job, Marty, thank you. You know, America's long-time host of "Wheel of Fortune" Pat Sajak had to undergo emergency surgery for a blocked intestine this week. So, you know what that meant? Thursday's show taping was cancelled and Vanna White stepped in to host Friday. According to show, Sajak is resting comfortably and looking forward to getting back to work. He's been hosting "Wheel of Fortune" -- think about this since 1982. We wish him a very quick recovery there.

SAVIDGE: Senator Lindsey Graham has gone from one of President Trump's toughest critics to being one of his best friends. Coming up, Jeanne Moos looks at Graham's head-spinning defenses of President Trump.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[06:50:00] PAUL: Meanwhile, one of this year's top 10 CNN heroes who's giving donkeys a second chance at life.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARK MEYERS, RESCUED THOUSANDS OF DONKEYS: Donkeys speak to my soul. That lip will come loose, won't it? Donkeys are like dogs. They're amazing animals that nobody gets. I understand what they're thinking, and there're so many donkeys in so many places that need so much help.

There's nothing cuter than a baby donkey. We're saving them, we're improving their lives. I want to see every donkey find its happiness. Its happy place. Its peaceful place.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PAUL: To vote for your favorite top 10 hero, go to cnnheroes.com. So, listen, he's one of President Trump's fiercest defenders. Senator Lindsey Graham wasn't always so keen to defend the president, though.

SAVIDGE: No, he wasn't. CNN's Jeanne Moos takes a look at this off the wall defense slightly that he's been offering.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): President Trump and Senator Lindsey Graham pretty much on the same page, but when Graham said he's not reading the pages of impeachment transcripts --

[06:55:00]

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): I'm not going to read these transcripts, the whole process is a joke.

MOOS: The jokes flew. It was compared to sticking fingers in your ears especially since last month, the senator said --

GRAHAM: If you could show me that, you know, Trump actually was engaging in a quid pro quo outside the phone call, that would be very disturbing.

MOOS: Hard to be disturbed if you won't read the transcripts.

STEPHEN COLBERT, COMEDIAN: I will just summarize the transcripts in three little words, OK? Lindsey, don't look away, Lindsey, don't look away. Don't look away, Lindsey, don't look away. Don't look away --

(LAUGHTER)

Lindsey.

MOOS: Lindsey Graham these days was portrayed as off the rails.

GRAHAM: What I can tell you about the Trump policy toward the Ukraine, it was incoherent. They seemed to be incapable of forming a quid pro quo. SETH MEYERS, COMEDIAN: I asked the old he couldn't have committed

these crimes, his two stupid defense.

MOOS: On offense and anti-Trump park, he put up a billboard in South Carolina showcasing something Graham once said about Trump.

GRAHAM: I think he's a kook. I think he's unfit for office.

MOOS: Graham's anti-Trump zingers linger.

GRAHAM: He's a race-baiting, xenophobic religious bigot. He's becoming a jackass.

MOOS: But though Graham jokes about their rocky past --

GRAHAM: And he says I don't have your phone number, and I said, there's a reason for that.

(LAUGHTER)

MOOS: The reason being candidate Trump gave out Graham's number.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: But let's try it, 202 --

MOOS: Graham responded with a cellphone-destroying video. These days they often talk on the phone and now Graham has joined Trump and his reluctance to read. The president wouldn't like reading those old quotes.

GRAHAM: And you know how you make America great again? Tell Donald Trump to go to hell.

MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN --

GRAHAM: This is kookland.

MOOS: New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

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