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Clashes in Hong Kong; Trump's Health Questions; 2020 Democratic Primary Polls; Officials Miss Call in Texans versus Ravens Game; Prince Andrew Faces Backlash. Aired 6:30-7a ET
Aired November 18, 2019 - 06:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Breaking overnight, four people killed, six others hurt after a shooting at a backyard party in Fresno, California. Police say about 35 people were gathered at a home to watch football when at least one gunman opened fire. Now, authorities say they do not know the motive behind the shooting and at this point no suspects have been identified.
ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: We do have some breaking news now. The standoff between police and anti-government protesters in Hong Kong escalating overnight. Police briefly stormed the entrance of a university where several hundred protesters are believed to be barricaded. Authorities making arrests before retreating.
Now, earlier in the day, protesters lit fires and they threw these petrol bombs at police, who then deployed water cannons and warned that they will use live rounds if they have to.
CNN's Anna Coren is live in Hong Kong.
What's the latest, Anna?
ANNA COREN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Alisyn, we are several blocks from the Polytechnic University where hundreds of those protesters are trapped inside. Police have blocked all entrances, all exits and say that everybody inside has to surrender and will be arrested. But they are digging in.
Here you've got protesters on the streets throwing petrol bombs. We were chased a short time ago by riot police firing tear gas. The water cannons also drove past, so we're expecting them to come past.
But this is seen as a diversion protest, if you like. This is not only such a busy shopping district, there are thousands of people who have taken to the streets. They are furious that their comrades, and that's what they call them, their comrades, their brothers and sisters, are trapped inside this university and they cannot get out.
Now, police today said they must surrender. They've mentioned that live ammunition will be used against protesters if they are forced to use it. This is something that they are saying more and more frequently.
The protesters, Alisyn and John, believe that they are at war. We got onto the campus yesterday afternoon and we spoke to many of these protesters who had taken a high position on the balcony. They were stockpiling petrol bombs. They were stockpiling bricks and rocks. They had catapults. There were archers with bows and arrows.
And over here you can see more tear gas being fired. Protesters pushing back. This is what we are seeing constantly on the streets of Hong Kong. It is just extraordinary. One of the biggest financial hubs in the world and it is now paralyzed more often on a daily, nightly basis by these protests.
And these people, they want those protesters trapped inside that university out. The government has made it perfectly clear that it will not tolerate this chaos and the violence, the escalating violence that we are seeing in Hong Kong, and yet the Hong Kong police just do not seem to have a real grip on what is going on.
You can see over here, Alisyn and John, that this is the front line further up. Protesters with their umbrellas are taking on police who are firing tear gas. I mean it really is quite extraordinary. This is what they're armed with. They're armed with the umbrellas. They find the tear gas canister and then they throw it back at the police.
But this is what is unfolding. There goes another petrol bomb. This is what is unfolding on the streets of Hong Kong and we are five months almost six months into these protests.
This began over an extradition bill, which has since been withdrawn. These protesters, they are fighting for democracy. They want freedom. They do not want to be part of China. That is what they have said loud and clear. Many of them know that this is a futile battle. But as far as they are concerned, they would rather die than liver under China.
John and Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh, Anna, we recognize what tough reporting conditions these are and the chaotic situation and violent situation that's unfolding around you. Thank you for showing it through your eyes.
BERMAN: Anna, can I just ask one thing. It's 7:30 at night there. Have the authorities made clear how long they will let this last tonight? Have they put a time deadline on this?
COREN: John, this is an unlawful assembly as far as police are concerned. Interestingly, the high court today overturned the ban that the city's chief executive enforced several months ago about wearing face bans -- face masks, I should say.
These protesters, they will be out here until the police turn out in force. I mean the police we know they are stretched, but protesters are turning out, not out tonight despite this being an unlawful assembly.
All these people could be arrested for just -- just being here. And I should also note that after this weekend, almost 5,000 people have been arrested here in Hong Kong. Who would have ever have thought that this could happen to a place like Hong Kong?
CAMEROTA: Anna, thank you.
Do you have a question?
BERMAN: No, I just -- I was going to say, stay safe, Anna.
And one thing I was going to point out is Anna was suggesting that they were chased by authorities from one place to another. And that's always a great cause of concern in this type of situations because if the authorities don't want you to see something, it means that something might be going on.
CAMEROTA: We will stay on that, obviously. Our great thanks to Anna there for reporting from the ground for us.
BERMAN: All right, meanwhile, there are new questions this morning about President Trump's health after an unscheduled visit to Walter Reed Medical Center on Saturday. The White House says the president received a quick exam and labs as part of his annual physical, but a source tells CNN the visit did not follow the usual protocol.
CNN's chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins us now.
Sanjay, you've been covering presidential physicals and health for some time. What does this visit signal to you?
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, this was an unusual visit. No question about it. Not only was it unusual as compared to recent presidents and how they've handled their physicals, it was even different than the way this own White House has handled this in the past.
We did get sort of a heads up in the past. The hospital, Walter Reed in this case, the -- everyone there would know that the president was coming. There were certain protocols in place. That didn't happen here.
Also, you know, when you read the statement they say specifically the president had a quick physical exam and labs done I believe was the wording. I've been in the White House medical unit. That's the medical unit within the White House itself and it's really well equipped to handle these sorts of things.
So this is unusual. What was it that needed to be done at Walter Reed that couldn't be done at the White House? Why was this done so many months earlier than he should have had probably had his physical, which was -- which would be next February because he had one in February of this year.
Also, if you do labs this early, that's three months, four months away from when the physical exam was going to be done. Do you have to repeat all that bloodwork again? There's just a lot about this that doesn't make sense.
Stephanie Grisham has been very clear because the obvious question I think to any medical person would be if someone makes a surprise visit to a hospital, what was going on? What prompted that visit? Stephanie Grisham's statement said, look, there were no symptoms. It was nothing else. But that would be the question here, why did the president need to go on Saturday without telling anyone?
CAMEROTA: Also, I mean, it does break with what we know about the president, which is that he's not been the most proactive person in terms of getting these tests before. What -- just remind us what we know about his health history.
GUPTA: Well, you know, it's interesting. And we can show you some of the data here just from his last physical even. You know, when you do these physicals, there's basic biodata, right, just height, weight, things like that. And 243 pounds, BMI of 30.4.
We know that he has this high cholesterol, which he's been taking medications for and he has a form of heart disease as well which he's been monitored for. There are certain types of tests to sort of assess the progress of how things are with his heart, for example. Those are the types of tests that could be done at a hospital, probably could not be done at the White House.
But, you know, when you're in your 70s and you've dealt with these sorts of health issues, you have to have them monitored.
And whether or not there was something specific that was going on that prompted an early visit, again, we don't know, but that would be the big concern.
CAMEROTA: Sanjay, thank you very much.
GUPTA: Yes, thank you.
CAMEROTA: We will have you back next hour if we -- when we learn more.
OK, a new CNN poll shows Mayor Pete Buttigieg with a commanding lead in Iowa. So what is fueling his surge? Harry Enten breaks down the numbers, next.
BERMAN: So, this morning, a brand new CNN poll shows a new leader in the state that will vote first. Mayor Pete Buttigieg has jumped to a statistically significant lead in Iowa.
Let's get "The Forecast" with CNN's senior politics writer and analyst Harry Enten.
This is a Buttigieg breakout, you might say. HARRY ENTEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICS WRITER: It is a Buttigieg breakout,
jailbreak in some sense. So, here we go. Here are the November numbers.
Buttigieg, 25 percent. Warren, Biden, Sanders, basically all statistically tied, 16, 15, 15.
Klobuchar's actually in fifth at 6 percent and Harris, who was the person in fifth place previously in our September and June polls, all the way down to 3 percent.
CAMEROTA: What's he doing? How do we explain it?
ENTEN: Yes, how do we explain it? So I think the thing that we should point out here, how is he doing it? This is how he's doing it.
So you might remember earlier on in this year he tended to be appealing to that very liberal block. You go back to June. He was at 18 percent. With somewhat liberals he was at 18 percent. With moderate and conservatives, he was only down at 10 percent. But he sort of reorganized his campaign, reorganized his message, and went towards the center. And we're seeing in these poll numbers that that pivot seems to be working because now his best group are these moderate to conservatives at 30 percent. He is leading among that group versus very liberals, he's actually doing worse than he was doing back in June.
BERMAN: And in terms of your overall political views, what are voters saying?
ENTEN: Yes, so this, I think, very key, which is they want to try and find that goldilocks in the center. And at this about right column, is this candidate's political views about right or too liberal or conservative. About right, Buttigieg here, 63 percent, that's the highest percentage about right. The too liberal or conservative, what are we seeing here, a majority thinks Sanders is too liberal. Warren's closing in on that as well. And Biden is also up.
If we go back since March, when they only asked about Sanders, Warren and Biden, we see this about right column for these three, all that about right dropping as we're going into November. So they're getting those attacks on the left for Sanders and Warren and therefore people think they're too liberal. Those attacks that Biden is too conservative, his number also going up in that too liberal for conservative lane.
CAMEROTA: Tell us more about Sanders and Warren.
ENTEN: Yes. So, Bernie Sanders is actually up in this poll and Warren is down. Why is that? Well, it has to do with the fact that Sanders is sort of getting his base back. Among those very liberal caucus goers, Sanders was actually well behind in September. Look at this, Warren was at 48 percent. Sanders was only at 20 percent. Now, in November, a statistical tie basically with Sanders at 34 percent, Warren at 32 percent. And we see that as well here among those 2016 Sanders supporters. Back in September, Warren was ahead with them. If you caucused for Bernie Sanders in 2016, Warren was ahead with them 32 percent to 25 percent. In November, Sanders running away with that lane, 39 percent to 22 percent.
BERMAN: And all of this after a heart attack.
ENTEN: All -- in fact, you might say that reinvigorated his campaign. Basically you got those endorsements from AOC and the squad and that seemed to reinvigorate him on the left.
BERMAN: Joe Biden falling in this poll.
ENTEN: Biden falling. Why is Biden falling? I think this is rather key. Look at this. Look at this long-term trend. Bad, bad, bad. No bueno. Thirty-two, 27, 23, 20, 15. The very favorable rating, which tends to be highly correlated with this, look at this, that same sort of trend line going down, and that I think is why. Iowa voters are just liking him less and less.
CAMEROTA: Has he spent less time there than (INAUDIBLE)?
ENTEN: No, he's going there. He's going there. And it just seems to be the attacks seem to be working. Although I should point out that this isn't an awful rating. It still gives him a chance to come back. But it's very clear he's going in the wrong direction.
BERMAN: In terms of leading in the polls, what is Pete Buttigieg, his overall number tell you right now?
ENTEN: Right. So I think I would just go back and point this out. The poll leader in Iowa caucuses, in last October, early November, before the caucuses, look at this, he's down to 25 percent. Basically anyone who was polling in that area, 29 percent to 25 percent historically, all those people actually went on to lose the caucuses or the primaries. So this is a very flexible number. This is malleable. It could very much move. And none of those candidates who are in the lead right now are in any shape out of the race.
CAMEROTA: Let's talk about what happened in Louisiana.
ENTEN: Yes, I would talk about this.
This, not too much -- I mean this was a close race down to the final -- final moments. But John Bel Edwards, the Democratic incumbent won 51 to 49 percent. Why did he do it? This is the same story we saw in Kentucky, folks. Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Shreveport, the major metropolitan areas, what we saw there, big movement towards the Democrat. And specifically down here in New Orleans, also in Jefferson County, one of the big suburbs, we saw massive changes in turnout. Huge turnout. African-American voters came out and voted in this runoff in a way we simply didn't see in the primary round.
BERMAN: In some of those typically Republican suburbs as well, the suburbs.
ENTEN: The suburbs, yes. Jefferson County used to be traditional Republican territory. Now, Democratic, at least in this election.
CAMEROTA: Really interesting, Harry, thank you very much.
ENTEN: Thank you.
CAMEROTA: OK, now to this, an extraordinary new interview with Prince Andrew is being seen as a public relations nightmare.
BERMAN: For good reason.
CAMEROTA: What he said about his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein, next.
BERMAN: Baltimore Ravens are very, very good. They crushed the Texans in the matchup of the week. And, once again, real questions about what the rules actually are in this football game.
Andy Scholes has much more in the "Bleacher Report."
ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, John, what is pass interference? You know, the NFL made it to where you could challenge if pass interference wasn't called after the Saints got cheated out of a Super Bowl last year, but the way the league is enforcing this new challenge, it's just ridiculous. The latest prime example coming in the first quarter of this Ravens/Texans game.
Deshaun Watson scrambling around. He's going to go deep for DeAndre Hopkins. Hopkins is getting -- just getting tackled in the end zone. No flag was thrown, but the Texans challenged it, but the call was upheld. No pass interference was the ruling. Now, when that happened, only six of 58 pass interference challenges had been overturned. Hopkins tweeting after the game, someone new needs to be making these decisions in New York.
As for the game, Lamar Jackson outdoing Watson. He ran for 86 yards and threw for four touchdowns. The Ravens won that game big 41-7.
Now, over the weekend, the biggest story in the NFL was the Colin Kaepernick workout that turned into a very eventful day. In an unprecedented move, the league was holding a workout for Kaepernick at the Atlanta Falcon's practice facility. Twenty-five scouts had arrived, myself and other media members were gathered outside. Then, 30 minutes before it was to start, it was called off by Kaepernick's team. They announced they were doing their own work out an hour later and moving it to a high school stadium about 60 miles away. Kaepernick's team said the NFL workout fell apart because they wanted to film it themselves, have it open to the media, and sign a generic liability waiver, not a waiver with employment related clauses in it like the NFL wanted them to sign, Alisyn. We -- all the media and everyone ran over to this new facility. Only eight of the teams that were at the original workout made it to that new workout at the stadium south near the airport in Atlanta.
Just a wild, wild afternoon. And it's something that made clear that there's still plenty of mistrust between Colin Kaepernick's team and the NFL.
CAMEROTA: Sounds like it. And that's all very confusing in terms of how they are handling all of this.
Andy, thank you very much.
SCHOLES: All right.
CAMEROTA: Now to this.
Prince Andrew is facing criticism this morning for comments he made in a new interview with the BBC about his relationship with the late sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
CNN's Hadas Gold I live outside Buckingham Palace with more.
This interview is at times quite cringe worthy, Hadas.
HADAS GOLD, CNN REPORTER: Yes, Alisyn, this interview was taped on Thursday in Buckingham Palace, just behind me. And if Prince Andrew thought that sitting down with the BBC would somehow clear the air and help quell the controversy surrounding him and his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein, it seems to have only further fanned the flames.
In one instance, Prince Andrew says that he wasn't actually that good of friends with Jeffrey Epstein, but then he says that he actually went to go visit him even after Epstein had already been convicted of sex crimes in order to break up the friendship in person.
Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But you were staying at the house of a convicted sex offender.
PRINCE ANDREW, DUKE OF YORK: Yes. It was a convenient place to stay. There was -- I mean I -- I've gone through this in my mind so many times. At the end of the day, with the benefit of all the hindsight that one could have, it was definitely the wrong thing to do. But at the time, I felt it was the -- it was the honorable and right thing to do.
And I admit fully that my judgment was probably colored by my tendency to be too honorable. That's just the way it is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GOLD: Prince Andrew also denied all the allegations brought forth by Virginia Roberts, who -- who says that she was forced to engage in sexual acts with Prince Andrew when she was a minor. Prince Andrew said he doesn't even recall meeting her despite the fact that there is a photo that alleges to show the two of them together in 2001.
When he was asked if he would be willing to talk to investigators in the U.S. or testify under oath, like some people have called on him to do, he said he would do so if his legal advisers told him it was a good idea.
BERMAN: Yes, which is unlikely because this interview in and of itself raised more questions than it answered.
Hadas, thank you very much for being with us this morning.
BERMAN: We do have a CNN exclusive for you. Iraq's spy chief has issued a dire warning that ISIS is rebuilding. He says senior ISIS leaders have taken refuge in Turkey and that an intelligence analysis shows that the terror group is threatening to try to free tens of thousands of followers from prisons and camps in northern Syria.
Sam Kiley with the exclusive.
SAM KILEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Hidden among those fleeing the last stand at the so-called Islamic Caliphate are leaders who evaded prisons like these, taking refuge in Turkey. Flush with millions of dollars and driven by revenge, they're plotting mass jail breakouts to rebuild the terror network.
These explosive warnings comes from Iraq's veteran head of military intelligence in an exclusive interview with CNN.
LT. GEN. SAAD AL-ALLAQ, HEAD OF IRAQ MILITARY INTELLIGENCE (through translator): Those elements who are currently in areas in Turkey play a key role in the new effort to recruit fighters. Top level leaders who have fled secretly in the direction of Gaziant (ph) and other areas are key founding member of the organization. And they have vast amounts of money. They even have investments in Turkey.
KILEY: The general said that he handed a dossier of nine ISIS leaders to Turkish military officials in this room a month ago. We were shown but not allowed to film Iraqi arrest warrants for two of those men which said that they are expert bombmakers and wanted for terror and mass murder. The warrants say they pose a great danger in the Middle East and to the west. Turkish officials told CNN that they're looking into the allegations.
About 10,000 alleged fighters are now held in prisons guarded by the Syrian Democratic Forces. How long they can be contained is unclear since Turkey's recent incursion into the area where it considers the Kurdish elements of the SDF a terror group.
The Trump administration has been widely criticized for withdrawing U.S. forces who were working with the SDF from the border area. Turkish forces have rounded up dozens of alleged ISIS members, recently arresting 42 people allegedly involved in complex money transfers for the terror group. Bur Iraqi military intelligence believes that these prisons and others like it could be attacked at any time funded by ISIS leaders living in Turkey.
AL-ALLAQ: We have concluded that the real intention of ISIS is to begin a mission they're calling break down defenses, to storm jails inside Iraq and Syria to free terrorists.
KILEY (on camera): And what do you think should be done about them?
AL-ALLAQ: There should be a large international effort to deal with this because these criminals could escape camps and go back to their countries. They pose a great danger to countries in Europe, Asia, and North Africa.
KILEY (voice over): In the nation where the terrorist caliphate first emerged, a warning, that it still has the money and the intent to be reborn.
KILEY: Now, John and Alisyn, over the weekend there were four brothers arrested inside Turkey plotting some kind of an alleged bomb attack there.