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Bloomberg Ends Campaign as Warren Assesses Path Forward; Biden Scores Stunning Super Tuesday Victories; Rep. John Garamendi (D-CA), Who Endorsed Biden, Discusses California Results & How the Democratic Race Stands Now; U.S. Defense Contractor Faces Charges in Espionage- Related Case; Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in Controversial Abortion Case; Search and Rescue Continues for Tornado Victims in Tennessee. Aired 11:30a-12p ET

Aired March 4, 2020 - 11:30   ET

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


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[11:31:11]

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: We are continuing to follow some of the breaking news this morning. Mike Bloomberg out of the 2020 race and throwing his support behind Joe Biden. Elizabeth Warren, after a disappointing finish last night, she is now in the midst of discussing the future of her campaign today as well.

This all comes as Joe Biden is the new comeback kid at 77 years old, winning big in Super Tuesday states, including a surprise victory in the second-biggest prize of the night, Texas.

And that is not the only surprise of the evening.

CNN's Tom Foreman is digging into the data.

It's so nice to have data to actually start digging into rather than just projections and prognostications.

So let's start here, Tom. Biden had three days between his win in South Carolina and Super Tuesday. How did that impact the race? What are you seeing?

TOM FOREMAN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It was everything, Kate. Look at the numbers here how Biden showed up here. A median snapshot of the Super Tuesday votes. So 49 percent for Biden, Sanders 18 percent. Bloomberg and Warren stayed static. Bloomberg lost some ground.

If you look a little earlier than that, look at this, Biden was a little above half the number he wound up with. Sanders lost half his support in that period of time.

Add in Klobuchar dropping out, Buttigieg dropping out, both throwing their weight behind Biden for the moderate vote out there, and that's the result. Something that I think even the Biden camp could have hoped for but couldn't have counted on the past few days -- Kate? BOLDUAN: Look, Biden didn't even have the money to spend in some of

these Super Tuesday states. How did spending shake out for him?

FOREMAN: Spending is a complete conundrum here. If you think people can buy their way into politics. Look at this, this was Massachusetts, Elizabeth Warren's home state, $12.3 million by Bloomberg, $677,000 by Sanders, $58,000 by Warren, $11,000 by Biden.

Sanders alone outspent him by a huge multiple, let alone, Bloomberg, and yet, look at the results. Biden came out of Massachusetts with a very solid win there, beating Warren in her home state. That's not something that obviously Warren wanted to see or Bloomberg or Sanders, but Biden did very well there. Look at that, 33 percent of the vote.

Look further up north and we look at Wisconsin. We can see what the advertising looked like up there. Same pattern where you're going to see Biden unable to match the dollars of the people who were challenging him, and yet, here he was with $6,000 spent there compared to all the others here, much, much, much bigger numbers. And the results, again, he came through in a big way.

All the Democrats out there were saying you can't buy the Democratic nomination. Joe Biden has proven that you can't buy it with money. You may be able to buy it by being around the party for a long, long, long time and making a lot of friends in that party but you can't do it with money alone.

BOLDUAN: An important win there in Minnesota.

We've also been talking about turnout already this morning. Can you take us into those numbers what you're seeing there?

FOREMAN: The numbers are absolutely staggering on turnout here. And the real key here seems to be the degree to which there are Democrats out there who are saying now it's getting down to the brass tacks. Up 69 percent in Virginia, up 41 percent in Texas. That's just a snapshot. Only one state was not up.

When we say it's down to the brass tacks, for so many Democratic voters, it is coming down to a key simple question: Who will beat Donald Trump? And for many of them, the message right now is they think Joe Biden is that person.

Certainly, Sanders supporters are fervent and they hope they can surge back here and ultimately capture the nomination.

But right now, Joe Biden has all the momentum. And Mike Bloomberg for all of his money just got a half-billion-dollar goose egg.

BOLDUAN: Good to see you, Tom. Thank you so much.

FOREMAN: Good to see you.

BOLDUAN: So amid all of the fallout from Super Tuesday, folks are also -- they also need to keep an eye on California where votes are still being counted and hundreds of delegates are yet to be decided. Right now, Bernie Sanders is ahead and the fight is still very much on.

[11:35:10]

Let's focus there. Joining me right now is Democratic Congressman from California, John Garamendi. He endorsed Joe Biden a few months back.

Congressman, thanks for coming in.

REP. JOHN GARAMENDI (D-CA): Good to be with you, Kate.

How are things looking in your state this morning? When do you think you'll get a final result there?

GARAMENDI: It will be a while. It's a big state. There were voting issues in southern California and L.A. is always late. We had early voting. The rest of it will be counted.

When will it be done? Take a deep breath, be patient and we'll eventually find out. It will be close at the top. Probably Sanders will be ahead, Biden right behind him, and we'll go from there.

What I'm really, really excited about is people came back to Biden. Way back in November, when I endorsed him -- I know Joe. I've known him since 1998. I know that he came from the middle class. I know that he cares about people, about health care, about jobs for the working men and women. And the public simply wasn't sure that he could put it together.

Keep in mind that the entire impeachment was about Trump trying to do Biden in. Way back more than almost a year ago, Trump figured Biden had to be put down. That's where the impeachment, Burisma and all that came from. A lot of doubt back in November.

But Biden weathered the storm. He weathered the storm, came back with a roar and with a solid, solid victory all across this nation.

We're going to consolidate. We're going to be behind Biden. Sanders has done a good job but, at the end of the day, he's not going to be our nominee.

BOLDUAN: Talking about some of that consolidation, Sanders is ahead and could very welcome out as the delegate winner from Super Tuesday when all is said and done in terms of delegates. Does that dampen Biden's comeback, if Sanders is still -- it could all be in California.

GARAMENDI: Well, the California delegates are going to get split. In my district, which is a conservative purple district, Biden won that district. He'll get half of the delegates in the district.

Beyond that, he will certainly get a good share of the overall delegates. This is the 15 percent statewide. He'll get those. Will Sanders get more? Possibly.

But when you take in all the other states, which was a blowout in some states by Biden, he'll get a large number of those. At the end of the day I know going forward that the Americans want

somebody in the president's office that can put this government back together again, that can settle down the chaos of the Trump administration, that can put the right people in the right places, that can actually run things like CDC, like the Department of Health Services.

We need that kind of stability, and there's one person that has it, and that's Biden. Sanders is a very interesting, very dynamic candidate, but president? I don't think so.

It's a different game, being a great candidate and being a great president are really two different things.

Biden will be a great president. He knows it. He knows what needs to be done.

BOLDUAN: Congressman --

GARAMENDI: Yes?

BOLDUAN: -- let me ask you about the news this morning. Mike Bloomberg bowing out, endorsing Joe Biden. What role do you see him having in helping the Biden camp? What role do you want to see him having in helping the Biden campaign?

GARAMENDI: First of all, it's absolutely clear that in some of these states Bloomberg was taking Biden votes. That will cease going forward. Beyond that, Bloomberg has pledged that he will help the Democratic Party all across this nation.

The issues that he spoke to unsuccessfully, but nonetheless spoke to are critical issues for Democrats, health care, gun violence issues. Those kinds of issues, criminal justice and the rest, are Democratic issues.

Undoubtedly Bloomberg will not only speak to those but he'll put his money behind those issues as he has already done in previous elections. That's going to be helpful to the Democrats going forward.

And, of course, Bloomberg's votes I believe will now move over to Biden.

BOLDUAN: We'll soon be able to find out because onward --

GARAMENDI: Yes, we will.

BOLDUAN: -- with voting coming next week.

Thank you so much, Congressman.

GARAMENDI: Yes. It's very exciting. I'm very, very happy about what's going on here. Thank you.

BOLDUAN: I really appreciate your time.

[11:39:20]

Coming up for us, this just into CNN. A U.S. defense contractor is now expected to face espionage charges. New details are coming in. I'll bring that to you, next.

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BOLDUAN: This just into CNN. A defense contractor now facing charges in an espionage-related case. That is according to U.S. officials. She was working overseas and, we're told, flew back to appear in court this afternoon.

CNN's Vivian Salama is following this as details are just coming in.

Vivian, what do we know about the contractor and the case, quite frankly?

VIVIAN SALAMA, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Kate, the details are still emerging but CNN has learned that a woman is currently on her way back from overseas. She's a defense contractor and will face a D.C. court later today on espionage-related charges.

[11:45:56]

So we still don't know a lot of the details as they are still emerging, but our David Shortell and Barbara Starr have spoken to several officials who say this woman is going to be facing a judge later today. It's unclear where she was coming from at the time, also what prosecutors allege that she may or may not have done. And so those details are still coming out.

But obviously, this is something that we're keeping an eye on. Those officials telling CNN that the charges do appear to be significant and she's someone that the Justice Department has been keeping an eye on for quite some time.

So obviously, very important news that's come to CNN and something we'll be tracking very closely.

BOLDUAN: Absolutely important when details come out.

Vivian, thank you so much. You'll be bringing details as they come. I really appreciate it.

Coming up for us, the Supreme Court just heard oral arguments about a controversial abortion access law that could have huge implications for abortion rights in the country. We're live outside the court. That's next.

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[11:50:22]

This just in from the Supreme Court. Justices just heard oral arguments in a major case on abortion rights and abortion access. It could have huge implications when the justices eventually decide. Let's get to the courts to see what happened. Sara Murray is there.

Sara, what did you hear from the justices?

SARA MURRAY, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It was a very divided Supreme Court today. This is the first abortion case that this newly conservative majority is hearing.

We did see a little bit of a signal from Chief Justice John Roberts and Brett Kavanaugh in their questioning that they may be leaning toward trying to find a way to uphold this law.

This is all based on a Louisiana abortion law that would require doctors to have admitting privileges at a local hospital. Critics say it would bring the abortion providers in the state of Louisiana down to one doctor.

Now, again, this is the first time we're seeing this new conservative majority consider one of these abortion cases. It was very divided.

We did see, of course, what you would expect, a bunch of backlash from the liberals. This was led by Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She had a number of questions today about the merits of this law, why something like this would be medically necessary when abortion is generally a safe procedure. So we saw those divides playing out.

A decision on this case will not come, though, Kate, until the summer.

BOLDUAN: Admitting privileges, doctors admitting privileges, Sara, is something we have seen from state to state to state. But this really could have huge implications, how the justices decide here.

MURRAY: That's right. And the question here is not whether you're going straight to overturning Roe v. Wade. It is one of these cases that could begin to chip away at abortion rights if the conservatives in the majority decide to uphold this law.

It's very similar, Kate, to a law the Supreme Court struck down four years ago. And it's striking the justices, or those who spoke up, were looking toward ways to differentiate this law from the one they heard just four years ago.

BOLDUAN: Remind folks of the timing on when the decision will come?

MURRAY: Sure. The decision is expected to come later on this summer. It will still be a few months until how we hear how the judges decide on this case -- Kate?

BOLDUAN: You can hear, as always when it comes to these cases, the protests on both sides all around, Sara.

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BOLDUAN: Sara, Thank you. Really appreciate it. Great to have insight from inside the court. Right now, search-and-rescue teams continue to comb through some of

the brutal aftermath from the brutal storm to hit Tennessee. They're looking for dozens of people still missing a full day after a powerful tornado ripped through the state. The death toll right now is standing at 24 people, including several children.

CNN's Nick Valencia is on the ground and just filed this report.

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GOV. BILL LEE (R-TN): The devastation is heartbreaking.

NICK VALENCIA, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): From above, entire neighborhoods across central Tennessee unrecognizable --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There it is -- go -- inside -- go! No, get inside.

VALENCIA: -- after at least one tornado ripped through the Nashville area while most people were sleeping.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We just ran downstairs and we all huddled together and just started praying, and it went by so fast.

VALENCIA: The sunrise revealing a harsh reality for many residents, waking up to homes and businesses completely destroyed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just had no idea. I mean, when I finally pulled up and got to looking, I mean -- I mean, it's like a bomb went off.

VALENCIA: In this Nashville suburb, initial surveys indicating an EF-3 tornado with wind speeds potentially up to 165 miles per hour.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not what we expected when we -- when we woke up and it was daylight. We knew it was going to be damage but we had no idea it was going to be like this.

VALENCIA: Despite the destruction, people still showed up to vote on Super Tuesday, with some facing long lines.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If it takes two hours, I'll wait because I remember times when I couldn't vote.

VALENCIA: Election officials scrambled to add alternative polling places because some, like this elementary school, were damaged.

LEE: Of course, we want people to exercise caution but we also want folks to exercise their rights and get out there and vote.

(CROSSTALK)

TAMBRA (ph) WILLIAMS, TORNADO VICTIM: Everything is gone. Most of our bedroom looks like it's across the street.

VALENCIA: Charles and Tambra (ph) Williams lost their home in the storm. CHARLES WILLIAMS, TORNADO VICTIM: The next thing I know, it felt like a big rush of air pulling us up and everything just started going away.

VALENCIA: But they say they don't feel alone as the long process of piecing their lives back together begins.

C. WILLIAMS: Everybody's coming together. We've got the community coming through here. The greatest commandment is love. We all love each other and it shows today when it comes down to it.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BOLDUAN: We will keep our eye on Tennessee.

[11:54:58]

And also this on the breaking story of the continued spread of the coronavirus, a programming reminder for all of you. With coronavirus on everyone's minds and so many questions outstanding, join Anderson Cooper and Dr. Sanjay Gupta for a CNN global town hall, "CORONAVIRUS, FACTS AND FEARS." That's tomorrow night at 10:00 eastern.

Still ahead, so much has gone on today and last night in the 2020 race. Today's stunning developments in the Democratic nomination. Joe Biden riding high. Mike Bloomberg out. Bernie Sanders watching California. And Elizabeth Warren taking stock where her campaign goes from here.

We'll be back.

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