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Barr Talks about Trump's Tweets; Coronavirus Weighs on Global Economy; CNN Original Series "The Windsors." Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired February 14, 2020 - 08:30   ET

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


[08:30:00]

DORIS KEARNS GOODWIN, PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Where you think about JFK appointing his brother, Robert Kennedy, to be attorney general and there was a huge outcry at the time, not only over the nepotism, but over the idea that he had no experience.

But on the other hand, he appointed an experienced, dedicated staff. And that's what you need to do. If you don't have the experience and you want to make sure you're not just being enthralled to your brother, you appoint a very great staff. And he did.

Interestingly, Eisenhower appointed the former chair of the RNC to be his attorney general, Brownell. Again, criticism. He's a campaign operative. And yet he did his -- a distinguished job.

So it depends on what happens when you get in there.

So the jury's still there on Barr. I mean he's done a lot of things that have made him seem like he's much more Mr. Trump's lawyer than the attorney general lawyer, but those people are there in the department and the morale must be terrible right now.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: There's all sorts of reporting about the president's feelings since having been impeached but acquitted in the Senate. And it's basically unfettered. And feeling even more bullish about things that he wants to do.

What does history telling us? Is there some sort of parallel for this moment?

GOODWIN: Well, the opposite parallel in a certain sense is what President Clinton did. I mean when he came out after his acquittal and he said, I'm profoundly sorry for having put the country through this burden of the impeachment. And he said -- he asked for forgiveness and he said let us now have a time for renewal and reconciliation. I mean that's the other end of the spectrum.

I mean people were hoping that at some point President Trump would feel, OK, now I'm going to settle down and now I'm -- I've got this triumph and I'm going to start moving on infrastructure and I'm going to do all these other things. But so far, it hasn't happened. The boldy-ness (ph) has gotten boldy-er (ph). JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: You know, I thought of a different way to ask

the question about cabinet officials taking a stand against the president because it isn't necessarily that they've said public things. In the past, when a cabinet member has had a real issue with the administration, he's quit, right? And that's happened a fair amount.

GOODWIN: You know, in fact, the team -- we should be judging in certain sense all of our leaders about the team they create. The team is an example of the character of the president. You want -- you don't want public humiliation. You don't want people being fired by a tweet. You want people who feel loyal to the president but loyal to the country.

I mean when you look at the great presidents, it's the teams they surrounded themselves with. Even my new guy, Washington, I mean he's got Hamilton and Jefferson, you know, and he's got Madison running around and he's got people who are arguing with him and that's a good thing. You want people to question your assumptions.

FDR, lovely, has Eleanor as his welcome thorn in his side, always questioning his assumptions.

So I think we can judge him on the team basis. In fact, if we hadn't had the whole impeachment thing go on, I think those are the kind of questions we would have been asking about President Trump in the leading up to the election. What kind of a team has he surrounded himself with? Has he grown in office? Has he acknowledged errors when he's made them? Has he taken responsibility for what's happened? Those are the human qualities that really matter in a leader. That's the index we should be putting, not only against him, but all the 2020 candidates that are running against him.

BERMAN: Jefferson quit. I mean Jefferson did quit.

GOODWIN: Well, they -- they got (INAUDIBLE).

BERMAN: Yes.

GOODWIN: That's the interesting thing in the second term of Washington, the anger between the Jeffersons and the Hamiltonians got so great that Jefferson resigned. And the last thing Washington does before he leaves office is to issue a farewell address. What does he tell us? I warn you against the baneful spirit of party against the spirit of revenge. If this continues, then we're opening the door to foreign influence and foreign corruption. And it's incredible how relevant that is.

CAMEROTA: Somebody should have taken notes on that one.

BERMAN: Yes, exactly.

GOODWIN: And you know the incredible thing is, they read it every year in the Senate. One Republican one year, one Democrat the other year. Seven thousand words. Is anyone listening?

BERMAN: If only someone had warned us. If only.

GOODWIN: Exactly. If only, we might have known what to do now.

CAMEROTA: It's funny if you talk about George Washington being your new squeeze because you -- I always say that you talk to the founders. I mean you consider them your friends. And I love when you say that. And so what are they telling you right now?

GOODWIN: You know, the interesting thing I think about George Washington is what he's telling us is that there was important precedence that he knew he had to set because he was the first, right? Everything he did we would look at for the future. So some people wanted to call him his mightiness. And he decides, no, it has to be just president. And then John Adams was apoplectic, but presidents of garden clubs, this is not dignified. But, more importantly, he told us that there had to be a peaceful transfer of power. He could have been a king. When the general wins a war, as he did, the general tradition was you take over the government. Instead, he took off his uniform, he went home and the king of England, King George III said, if he did that, he's the greatest man in the world.

And then, again, he serves two terms. He could have had three, four. He could have stayed until he died and he decided, I'm declining, I'm going home. He set that two-term tradition. He did not want to be a king. He wanted to be a Republican. It's a republic he's creating. I think that's a great understanding for us today.

[08:35:01]

BERMAN: Sometimes leadership is choosing not to use the power that you can get away with using.

GOODWIN: That's exactly right. Exactly right. In fact, General Powell says in the miniseries that he didn't need the power. He had power. He had the internal power. He didn't need to search for more of it.

CAMEROTA: And, again, the miniseries is called "Washington." It is a three-night mini-series for The History Channel.

Thanks so much for being here.

GOODWIN: Oh, thank you.

CAMEROTA: And congratulations on the (INAUDIBLE).

GOODWIN: Yes, it was a great adventure to work with all the historians and work with actors and see something coming to life. It was really fun.

CAMEROTA: Sounds great. Thanks so much, Doris. Great to see you.

GOODWIN: You're welcome.

CAMEROTA: OK, the deadly coronavirus outbreak in China is having a big impact on the global economy. How bad is the ripple effect?

BERMAN: But first, the CNN original series "Race for the White House" returns Sunday night. Here's a preview.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, you want to be the leader of the free world? Just how far will you go to get what you want?

BARACK OBAMA, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: The hope of a skinny kid with a funny name who believes that America has a place for him, too.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He just got to the Senate. The general feeling was, that was pretty audacious.

DAVID AXELROD: He said, I'm not getting in this to lose.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lyndon Johnson, he's one of the most Machiavellian players in American politics who basically will do anything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We figured out that we must be being bugged.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He put a black book on my desk. I probably should have said, where did you get this, Bill?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's impossible to overestimate how furious Ford was. You do not challenge the president of the United States when he's an incumbent.

OBAMA: I promise you, we as a people will get there.

RONALD REAGAN, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: We'll make America great again.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "Race for the White House," Sunday at 9:00 on CNN.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[08:41:20]

BERMAN: It's time for "CNN Business."

The deadly coronavirus outbreak is weighing on the global economy.

CNN business correspondent Alison Kosik joins us now with more on that.

Alison.

ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, John.

You know, the coronavirus outbreak really is the wildcard or the x factor in a strong U.S. economy. Wall Street has been rattled as fears about the rising number of cases in China weighs on markets. And we still haven't been able to put a price tag on all this because we're in the thick of it. But here's how White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow put it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LARRY KUDLOW, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL: There's no question it's uncertainty in the economy. I just think, again, because it's so well contained here, that we will feel some of the problems over in China. But it's still quite minimal. A couple tenths of 1 percent.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KOSIK: Goldman Sachs has warned coronavirus could shave 0.4 percent off first quarter growth in the U.S. And we're already seeing how the uncertainty is threatening global growth. Tourism has been disrupted as airlines extend flight cancellations in and out of China. Shipping containers are idling in ports so supply chains are being disrupted too, creating a possible delay in popular consumer items. Here's one example. The maker of LOL Surprise toys is warning the outbreak has already impacted production significantly. Shipments which are usually made now for the fall and the holiday shopping seasons will be delayed. So this means the toys could be hard to find by the end of the year.

Businesses in China are slowly getting back to work with restrictions, including working from home, temperature checks and quarantines, and economists say the current level of disruption is manageable, but the question is, when does it become unmanageable?

Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Understood. That is definitely one of the questions.

Alison, thank you very much for all of that reporting.

So as royal scandals go, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have nothing on King Edward VIII. Up next, we bring you a preview of the CNN original series on the British royal family.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[08:47:26]

CAMEROTA: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's decision to walk away from their royal duties is far from the first royal controversy. A new CNN original series, "The Windsors: Inside the Royal Dynasty" examines how the world's most famous monarchy has survived war, scandals and tragedy to thrive in the modern world.

Here's a sneak peek.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: King Edward has been on the throne for just nine months. Until now, he's managed to keep his two-year affair with Wallace (ph) secret from the British public.

ANNE SEBBA, BIOGRAPHER: The world knows all about this relationship, but in Britain, they're still in the dark.

TED POWELL, BIOGRAPHER: It's patriots in America are writing home to Britain saying, what is happening?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Finally, Edward has a meeting with the prime minister, Baldwin.

POWELL: Edward declares his hand. He says that he is determined to marry Wallace.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is a bombshell.

ASSOC. PROF. LAURA NYM MAYHALL, HISTORIAN: The prime minister tells him that he has three options. He can give up his relationship with Mrs. Simpson. He can marry Mrs. Simpson against the express wishes of his ministers, who will then resign, or he can abdicate.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: All right, this is so incredibly well done.

Joining us now, CNN royal correspondent Max Foster and CNN royal commentator Victoria Arbiter.

First of all, great to have you here, guys.

MAX FOSTER, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Well, thank you for allowing me in from the street corners that you normally put me on. I've now got a taste of Victoria's life on the sofa.

VICTORIA ARBITER, CNN ROYAL COMMENTATOR: Of the grand life. Yes. Yes.

CAMEROTA: Yes, of the grand life, yes. Look how comfy this is.

FOSTER: I know.

BERMAN: This -- this series is so well done. As you guys were telling us during the break, not at all salacious. But when you see that clip and when you hear about Edward, you were reminded of the fact that as -- as big as every little thing that happens we think is, nothing can ever be as big as the king quitting because of a relationship.

ARBITER: It really was a pivotal moment in the history of the British monarchy. And when the queen was born, it was never imagined that she would one day be serving -- the serving sovereign. And -- and in that moment, her life changed, her father's life, of course, drastically changed. She blames that time for his untimely death. He was only 56 when he passed away.

And so I think really, when we look at the history as a whole, that was probably the very worst moment.

[08:50:00]

And he didn't choose to leave, like Harry and Meghan did, he was forced to leave because, of course, at the time the church didn't recognize the marriage of a divorcee to someone who was another divorcee. So -- so, yes, there's no question that was a pivotal moment. CAMEROTA: Max, the queen has been on the throne for 68 years. And has

she had more than her share of scandal or is it just that she's been on the throne for so long?

FOSTER: Will she ever be allowed to step back? I mean she's never going to abdicate, but she has been trying to sort of reduce her responsibilities and allowing Charles and William to do more.

But, again, you know, with this latest crisis with the Sussexs leaving, but also with the Andrew crisis as well, and that disastrous interview, ultimately it was the queen who had to step in and resolve all the issues. And I'm sure there was an effort for Charles to do more there, but ultimately it was the queen that had to do that.

And she's still absolutely integral. And it does raise the question about, you know, when she's not there, how these situations will be resolved, because there are tensions within the family. And she's the one that always brings it all together.

BERMAN: First of all, I have to give thanks to both of you. You've both been very patient with me. I've had a lot of skepticism about the royal family for a long time and you've always, like I said, been patient.

I think this series comes at a crucial time because I do think more than ever before the future of the monarchy is in question in ways that it hasn't been in question before.

ARBITER: Perhaps. I mean certainly people approach the Harry and Meghan story and said, this is the beginning of the end of the monarchy. And we have to remember, as we said in the introduction, the monarchy has survived war, revolution, abdication, Diana's death. It has survived so much in its thousand-year history. This, ultimately, will be viewed by historians as just a blip in the royal tapestry.

But we do live in an era where social media take every tiny little bit of information and spins it and twists it. And so I think what makes this documentary so compelling is the fact that it is told -- it's just the truth from incredibly reliable commentators, authors, historians, biographers. It just lays out what happened. And I think it's so important that we come back to the truth in a world where facts seem to matter very little these days. And everything is sort of spun to support a negative narrative. And that's what makes this documentary so compelling.

CAMEROTA: Max, what is the latest with Meghan and Harry? Have they severed ties?

FOSTER: Yes, so they confirmed this morning that they are closing down their office at Buckingham Palace. So that's 15 members of staff.

CAMEROTA: That means they're not coming back, basically.

FOSTER: Yes.

CAMEROTA: I mean if there was some hope in Britain that this was temporary or they'd come to their senses or they'd be, you know, living in both places, that doesn't seem to be happening.

FOSTER: Yes. And, you know, these are people that I work with all the time. So it's a really tough time at the moment.

And it's interesting because that team have been so loyal to the Sussexs and there's been huge tensions within the households. And this is a moment where they are being let go of. They're trying to find them new job, but it's not likely easy. It's a public sector organization. So that, yes.

But I think you're right, it's a very, very clear message that they won't be coming back.

But we were watching last night, weren't we, one of the episodes which focuses on the '90s. It was interesting, the story of Diana and Charles has been told so often. But telling it again in this very sort of powerful, elegant, accurate and authoritative way is interesting because there was a moment where Diana -- a very close friend of Diana's talks about how she didn't feel valued and that he wasn't praised by the rest of the family. And the language that she uses is the sort of language that I've heard behind the scenes Meghan speak in as well. So as much as we think the institution is modernized, it can only modernize to a certain extent. You know, ultimately, it's about that hierarchy, that central hierarchy. You know, the queen, Charles, William and George. And I think that Meghan struggled with that in the same way that Diana did.

CAMEROTA: Victoria, Max, thank you very much for previewing all of this for us. It looks fascinating. Great to talk to you guys, as always. Great to have you here as well.

You can watch the new CNN original series "The Windsors." It premieres Sunday at 10:00 p.m. Eastern and Pacific only on CNN.

BERMAN: And just to emphasize, it is so well done. And if you love history, you're going to love this.

Time now for "The Good Stuff."

A California family wants to find the generous person behind a random act of kindness and cash. Six-year-old Daphne Kenny (ph) spotted something in the cereal aisle of a west Sacramento grocery store over the weekend. It was a $100 bill along with a note that read, whoever finds this, I love you. Now she would like to thank that person.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you. You are a very nice person. It made her really happy. She was like really ecstatic about it when she got home.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, it absolutely made her day. Totally made her weekend.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: Finding a hundred bucks has a tendency to do that, right?

CAMEROTA: Yes, that would make your weekend also.

BERMAN: Daphne used the money to add to her collection of plush cats, which is just what I would do also.

[08:55:03]

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh, that's wonderful. If you left it and you want to contact us, please feel free. We'll continue the story.

Meanwhile, Attorney General Bill Barr publicly rebuking the president. The question is, why? What does it mean? Our coverage continues, next.

BERMAN: And why are plush cats involved?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN ANCHOR: A very good Friday morning to you. It's a busy one. I'm Jim Sciutto in Washington. Poppy Harlow has the day off.

A rare public rebuke from one of the president's own appointees, one of his most loyal ones, Attorney General Bill Barr.

[09:00:02]

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WILLIAM BARR, ATTORNEY GENERAL: I have a problem with some of -- some of the tweets.

To have public statements and tweets --