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Sanders Admits He'll Concede if Biden Wins Plurality of Delegates; Florida Congresswoman Val Demings Endorses Joe Biden; Japan's Coronavirus Cases 10 Times Higher Than Official Reports. Aired 7:30-8a ET

Aired March 5, 2020 - 07:30   ET

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


[07:30:00]

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CO-ANCHOR, NEW DAY: As of this morning, Senator Bernie Sanders is in second place in the delegate count, this is after Super Tuesday contests. But California is still counting. Last night, Bernie Sanders doubled down on what he feels should happen if neither he nor Joe Biden reach the threshold to clinch the Democratic nomination. And it was really an important comment. So, listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RACHEL MADDOW, HOST, THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW: If at the end of the day, it turns out that Vice President Biden is going to have more delegates than you do heading into the convention, will you drop out?

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D-VT) & PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Of course, going to drop out, he will win. I mean, you will run through -- I suspect we will run through the process. I think people have a right to vote. But if Biden walks into the convention or at the end of the process has more votes than me, he's the winner.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAMEROTA: Joining us now, we have Krystal Ball; co-host of "Rising" on "Hill TV", CNN political commentator and Democratic strategist Paul Begala, and CNN political analyst Alex Burns; he's a national political correspondent for "The New York Times". Alex, that was really interesting because there's been so much talk of a contested convention if both candidates say whoever has one more delegate is the winner even if they don't get to the magic number. Is that it? Is that it at the convention, we don't have to worry about a contested convention anymore?

ALEX BURNS, NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Well, it's pretty close, although at the moment, we do only have one candidate saying that if they have one --

(CROSSTALK)

CAMEROTA: Joe Biden has not said that. BURNS: Joe Biden has not said that even though at this very moment,

it's an argument that plays to his own advantage, right? It was only -- what was it? Last week that no candidate besides Bernie Sanders was willing to go there. No, I think that's very important, both because of what it tells us about the overall state of this race and what kind of process it might take for either candidate to wrap up the nomination.

But also for a lot of anxious Democrats who remember what the convention was like in 2016 and are really concerned about making sure that their eventual nominee if it's not Bernie Sanders, is someone who is seen as having broad legitimacy, they are very relieved to hear him say that.

JOHN BERMAN, CO-ANCHOR, NEW DAY: Look, I know the Biden people really wish it was over this morning. I know there are some anxious Democratic voters who perhaps do. But it's not. I mean, it's not even close. There's really not that much of a spread in the delegates, and there's a lot of real estate left. And Krystal -- and I want to make clear, you have not endorsed any candidate.

But you are a progressive in Bernie Sanders, was someone you supported four years ago. And you've talked --

KRYSTAL BALL, CO-HOST, RISING, HILL TV: Yes --

BERMAN: A lot in the last 24 hours, and I think it's really instructive about what you think the Sanders campaign and the senator needs -- what do they need to improve? They've done some things you think have been wrong and need to do better on if they want to secure this nomination.

BALL: Yes, I think we have to be clear right, about the fact that they had one theory of the case which is that, you could expand the electorate enough to overcome, you know, opposition from sort of the traditional Democratic voter. Now, Bernie Sanders has expanded the electorate with Latinos, he still has very high numbers with young people which will be a critical piece of the general election. But he has not been able to bring enough voters in to make up for deficits in other areas.

On the other hand -- and this is the helpful piece for people who like Bernie Sanders, he has more -- found more receptivity with those traditional elements of the Democratic coalition, than perhaps they expected. His favorability ratings are very high, Medicare for all and the green new deal and $15 minimum wage tests incredibly well in every single state that we've seen.

But people need a little bit of comfort that Bernie Sanders would be the person to defeat Donald Trump. He needs some friends. He needs some validators. He needs to be able to win that electability argument. And I think it is one that he can win. But that's where Elizabeth Warren does become important in this thing. Suburban voters are very comfortable with her, they like her, they liked her approach.

They thought that she was someone who could be a strong candidate. So, I think what she does could be incredibly significant if she were to back Bernie Sanders at this moment.

CAMEROTA: Is that how you see it, Paul?

PAUL BEGALA, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes, and that, he needs to stop this attack on the Democratic establishment as if -- while running an ad with Barack Obama in it. You saw Congresswoman Demings endorsing Joe Biden and making the point. She is the daughter of a maid and janitor, and now she's a powerful congresswoman because she's worked hard and because the Democratic Party puts forward candidates like her.

It's a big mistake and he does need, frankly, Krystal is -- I hope they're listening to you, Krystal that he needs -- it's -- this is -- this is a team sport. And his slogan is not meet us. But still, it's kind of just him. And I would caution both of these candidates as they enter into what could be a death spiral, hold back from attacking motive and pull back from attacking other people's supporters.

You know, and I -- Biden has said this all along, it's part of his sort of political DNA, he learned that in a Senate. You see, you attacked position, not attacked their motive. And Joe Biden is not bought by corporate America. It's preposterous. And you know, Bernie is a really good guy. And they shouldn't go at it -- and I think maybe hard to get Elizabeth Warren support for -- to Bernie not because they're that far apart on issues, but because there was that personal friction where Senator Warren believed that Bernie had called her a liar on national television. That's kind of hard to get past.

[07:35:00]

BERMAN: It's interesting. Also Senator Sanders sort of continued in stringent attacks on the establishment do give a window to Joe Biden that we just saw this morning. The former vice president did an interview moments ago where he was asked about this. Let's listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Said Joe is running a campaign which is obviously heavily supported by the corporate establishment. What do you think about that argument?

JOE BIDEN, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT & PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It's ridiculous. It's ridiculous. Bernie, you got beaten by overwhelming support I had from the African-American community, Bernie. You got beaten because of suburban women, Bernie. You got beaten because middle class, hardworking folks out there, Bernie. You've raised a lot more money than I have, Bernie.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The president --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNS: Well, look. I think Bernie Sanders just walked right into that one. Right, it doesn't take a genius to figure out how to not to -- deliver a comeback against that accusation, given the Tuesday that Joe Biden just had. And look, Bernie Sanders is still using a rhetorical playbook that he developed -- well, really 40 years ago, but that he brought national in 2016. And I just don't know that it scans the Democratic voters in the same way when your opponent is Joe Biden.

This wasn't a primary like 2016 where you had from the outset, literally, every important institution and actor in the Democratic Party lined up behind Joe Biden. Far from it. It was quarter after quarter, he was getting whipped in fundraising by candidates as prominent and well connected in the political establishment as the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, right?

So, that's not to say that the political establishment isn't more comfortable with Biden. They clearly are. And he's getting an enormous amount of support from institutional Democratic actors right now. I just don't know that your average Democratic voter sees him as a guy who's being propped up by sinister actors in board rooms all around America.

CAMEROTA: See Paul, what I heard there was that, if the gloves are coming off, OK? If things are getting ugly, Terry McAuliffe said prepare yourself, you know, these next five weeks --

BERMAN: Yes --

CAMEROTA: Are going to be ugly. If that's as vowed as ugly as Joe Biden is willing to go -- like, he's so uncomfortable, I think, with attacking anybody in the Democratic space or maybe anybody, he was about to be like, you're a stinker, Bernie. Like, that's --

(LAUGHTER)

I mean, that was the most vociferous --

BEGALA: That's the kind of critique -- yes, I thought it was very effective, right? Because he was defending his supporters, and they're not just the establishment. I watched last night, this guy Cuomo on this network, he had an interview with AOC, who is Bernie's most -- Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; probably Bernie's most important endorser.

And she kept it on issues too. And she was hammering Joe for being -- after that fair game, that's exactly --

BERMAN: Yes --

BEGALA: Where this thing ought to be fought out. So, you know, those of us who want the party united, this is what's different from 2016, is that Donald Trump is actually the president. None of us really believed that Trump could win it. Nothing unites the people of earth like a threat from Mars, and Donald Trump is this giant orange Martian.

BERMAN: Let's get on the hell out, all the Democrats, and I think that's maybe both Joe and Bernie, you're seeing that --

BEGALA: Back to earth.

BALL: Can I -- can I jump in on this though --

BERMAN: Yes --

BALL: Very quickly? Because this is an electability issue as well. I mean, we have to remember that Donald Trump is in the White House. Why? Because so many Americans were disgusted with the political establishment in D.C. And they bought his false promises that he was going to drain the swamp, and because he was a rich guy he couldn't be bought. Look, it was all BS.

But a lot of people believed that, and that was appealing. So Hillary Clinton took on water because she was seen as part of a corrupt establishment in D.C. That is a problem for Joe Biden. I mean, going back to Elizabeth Warren, think about the issue that she came into politics fighting, was this bad bankruptcy bill that benefitted credit card companies that Joe Biden was a champion of.

He was called the senator from MBNA, a credit card issuer because of his coziness with the credit card companies. I think it's a very important issue to litigate, they are running very different campaigns. There's a "New York Times" article saying, you know, Wall Street's opening up their pocketbooks to Joe Biden.

Health insurance stocks spiked when he had a good night. That says something about who the big corporate interests want to be in the White House. And I think that is a deeply important issue for Democratic primary voters. But also looking forward to the general election.

BERMAN: And I think as Krystal points out, we want to wait and see what Senator Elizabeth Warren does. She is back home in Massachusetts reassessing. We don't know if she's staying in or not. We don't know if she doesn't stay in if she will endorse. This will speak volumes over the next few days. So Krystal, Alex, Paul, thank you all very much --

BALL: Thank you guys.

BERMAN: Stinker.

CAMEROTA: You watch your language, Mister --

BERMAN: You watch your language young fella --

CAMEROTA: Yes --

(LAUGHTER)

BERMAN: All right. A major outbreak of coronavirus in Japan raising concerns about the upcoming Summer Olympic games. We have live report and new information from Tokyo, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[07:40:00] BERMAN: The coronavirus has now killed more than 3,200 people

worldwide, and there is growing scrutiny of the infection rate in Japan as that country prepares to host the Summer Olympic games. Will Ripley live in Tokyo. And Will, I have to say, every day, officials there face the question, what's going to happen to the games? Will they go on as planned?

WILL RIPLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is not a good time to be Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe or a Tokyo 2020 Olympics organizer. Because we just keep learning more about things that just don't make a whole lot of sense. Like, you know, while Japan is spending tens of billions of dollars on hosting the Olympics, they're cutting the funding for the people who should be conducting tests, you know, for this virus.

And you know, considering the fact that we're going to have people coming in from all over the world, they're spending money to build a stadium. But now, they're left in a situation where some feel Japan is not properly equipped to handle this health crisis.

[07:45:00]

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

RIPLEY (voice-over): Around the world, novel coronavirus infections are hovering around 100,000. In Japan, confirmed cases just topped 1,000. The vast majority linked to the Diamond Princess cruise ship. A growing number of infectious disease experts believe the actual numbers in Japan are significantly higher.

HIROSHI NISHIURA, EPIDEMIOLOGIST, HOKKAIDO UNIVERSITY: That represent only the tip of the iceberg over all infected individuals. And that's likely to be less than 10 percent.

RIPLEY: Japanese epidemiologist Hiroshi Nishiura says that means for every confirmed case of coronavirus, as many as ten cases go unreported. The Japanese Health Ministry tells CNN, we understand, there are people we have not detected. We think how and who should be given priority for testing is most important.

Japan is testing a tiny fraction when compared to other countries in the region. People showing symptoms must self-quarantine for four days before they even qualify for a test.

TOMOKO TAMURA, OPPOSITION COMMUNIST PARTY LAWMAKER (through translator): I think tens of thousands of people are potentially infected, says Japanese lawmaker Tomoko Tamura.

RIPLEY (on camera): Is the Japanese government deliberately trying to keep the number of confirmed cases low?

TAMURA: There is talk here in Japan that the government doesn't want a high number, she says. But I'd rather believe the situation is happening because the government has not established a good testing system. RIPLEY (voice-over): The Health Ministry tells CNN, we are aware many

people want to take the test. The ministry is expanding the target range to include people showing mild symptoms. But does Japan even have the testing capacity after years of budget cuts?

Tamura has been a vocal critic of the Japanese government's decision to dramatically down-size its National Institute of Infectious Diseases, slashing its budget and personnel for more than a decade.

TAMURA: This is a dangerous situation, Tamura says.

RIPLEY (on camera): A lot of people would look at that chart and think it makes absolutely no sense for the Japanese government to cut funding when you're going to have visitors, and potentially diseases coming into the country in a matter of months.

TAMURA: Scary. It's scary, she says. These cuts have created a critical situation.

RIPLEY (voice-over): Those cuts even as Japan spends tens of billions of dollars preparing to host the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics. Dr. Masahiro Kami says the games should be called off.

(on camera): Do you think there's any chance to safely hold the Olympics here in Japan?

MASAHIRO KAMI, MEDICAL GOVERNANCE RESEARCH INSTITUTE: Olympics should be postponed next year. This year it is impossible because of the coronavirus will become a pandemic in the world.

RIPLEY (voice-over): Tokyo 2020 organizers and International Olympic Committee say they remain confident the games will go on in late July as planned. That's assuming Olympic teams and spectators still want to go. But they won't rule out postponing the Olympics if the outbreak intensifies, putting lives at risk.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

RIPLEY: And in a country like Japan that has a very high proportion of people over the age of 60, that high-risk group for coronavirus, well, there are a lot of people whose lives are potentially at risk if this outbreak does intensify here. And when you think about the fact that a country like South Korea which is much smaller and has far fewer resources can test up to 10,000 people a day, they can test more people in one day than Japan has tested this entire time that the coronavirus crisis has existed.

BERMAN: Will, really, it does seem that some governments are taking a fingers-crossed approach to the coronavirus. And you hope -- you hope --

RIPLEY: Yes --

BERMAN: It's not a major miscalculation. Thanks so much for being with us this morning. So also this morning, dealing with this rare scolding from the Chief Justice of the United States. The war of words with the Senate Minority leader, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[07:50:00]

BERMAN: Senate Minority leader Chuck Schumer drawing a rare rebuke from the Chief Justice of the United States. So, while speaking at an abortion rights rally, Senator Schumer took aim at some of the president's conservative appointments.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): I want to tell you, Gorsuch, I want to tell you, Kavanaugh, you have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price!

(CHEERS)

You won't know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: Joining me now, CNN chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin. You will pay the price. You won't know what hit you. Those were the words it seems to me that set off the Chief Justice who responded, quote, "justices know that criticism comes with the territory, but threatening statements of this sort from the highest levels of government are not only inappropriate, they are dangerous. All members of the court will continue to do their job without fear or favor from whatever quarter." What are we seeing here?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN CHIEF LEGAL ANALYST: Well, I mean, if you parse what Chuck Schumer said, it was wrong, it was inappropriate. It was not the way you should talk about the Supreme Court. Frankly, no one noticed what he said until Roberts intervened. When it was political hyperbole of the sort that politicians shouldn't engage in. What's really unusual here is Roberts getting involved.

When Chuck Schumer is not exactly the American political figure we think of who usually engages in invective, in nasty politics. That's, of course, the president, and Roberts has been almost -- not totally, almost entirely silent about the president.

BERMAN: He rebuked the president once --

TOOBIN: Once --

BERMAN: When he talked about the idea of having Obama judges, Clinton judges, Trump judges, correct?

TOOBIN: Yes, where I actually think the president was more right than the Chief Justice. There is a huge difference in how those different appointees view a lot of issues. But be that as it may, it is true that the Chief Justice once rebuked the president.

[07:55:00]

BERMAN: But he chose not to, and this is where some liberal defenders of Chuck Schumer speak up. The Chief Justice chose not to say anything in the last few weeks when President Trump was talking about Justice Sotomayor and Ginsburg.

TOOBIN: Right, and you know, again, if you want to start parsing what everyone said, the president did not say about Roberts -- about Ginsburg and Sotomayor that they are going to reap the whirlwind, that they're you know, in physical danger. He said they should recuse themselves. It was a ridiculous argument, but it was a political argument. It wasn't a personal attack.

BERMAN: And this was -- and actually, you don't really have to parse what Chuck Schumer said. You just have to listen to it. I mean, he --

TOOBIN: Right.

BERMAN: He said -- he said, "you will pay the price. You won't know what hit you." And he said this specifically to Justice Gorsuch and Justice Kavanaugh.

TOOBIN: I mean, I -- and certainly not going to defend what Chuck Schumer said. It was wrong. It was inappropriate. It did sound like a physical threat. I think if you look at Chuck Schumer's entire record, if you look at how he behaves, he does not threaten people physically. It was certainly a bad choice of words. The interesting thing is whether the Chief Justice is going to start to get involved on a more regular basis.

BERMAN: Do you think he will?

TOOBIN: No, I don't. And I think the president's -- Schumer's defenders and the people who are critical of Gorsuch and Kavanaugh are coming out in defense of Schumer and saying, look, this is a significant issue and everyone has a right to speak out on it.

BERMAN: I think it's instructive how Chuck Schumer chose to respond to the Chief Justice, and to me it's instructive of where the discussion will be about the Supreme Court going forward. Let me read this to you. Schumer says, "for Justice Roberts to follow the right wing's deliberate misinterpretation of what Senator Schumer said while remaining silent when President Trump attacked Justices Sotomayor and Ginsburg last week, shows Justice Roberts does not just call balls and strikes."

The Senate Minority leader clearly, it seems to me, is embracing the political questions about the Supreme Court.

TOOBIN: Absolutely. And you notice that the spokesman there didn't call him the Chief Justice which is the customary way of referring to John Roberts, not Justice Roberts. But you know, what is striking to me, and it's striking to me every four years is if you look at the Democratic candidates for president, particularly Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden; the former chairman of the Judiciary Committee, where is the Supreme Court in this campaign? Why are they never talking about the future of the court? Maybe in a

perverse way, this dust-up -- and I think it's really sort of a momentary dust-up, will remind Democratic primary voters, this issue is important. And Neil Gorsuch and Kavanaugh may be a much more important legacy of Donald Trump than anything they actually talk about on the campaign trail.

BERMAN: One thing is clear, is that there are some politicians who see some utility in talking about this more. We just learned that the Majority leader, Mitch McConnell will make a statement about all this on the Senate floor coming up.

TOOBIN: And if it leads to political discussion of the future of the Supreme Court, I think that's a good thing. Name-calling like Chuck Schumer got involved in, not a good thing.

BERMAN: Or in an agreement not to threaten people is probably a good thing. All right, Jeffrey Toobin, thank you --

TOOBIN: All right --

BERMAN: Very much. Thank you to our international viewers for watching. For U.S. viewers, "CNN NEWSROOM" with Max Foster is next. For our U.S. viewers, there is this cruise ship not allowed to dock in San Francisco. Concerns about up to two dozen cases of coronavirus possibly on board, "NEW DAY" continues right now.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The cruise ship with as many as 3,500 passengers and crew being held off the California coast so authorities can test for coronavirus.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are going to be flying testing kits to the cruise ship.

MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: If you are a healthy American, the risk of contracting the coronavirus remains low.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Defeating Donald Trump starts with uniting behind the candidate with the best shot to do it. That candidate is Joe Biden.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The race is coming down to a choice between Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden.

SANDERS: Joe is running his campaign, which is obviously supported by the corporate establishment.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: All right, good morning and welcome to your NEW DAY, it's Thursday, March 5th, it's 8:00 now in the east. And we begin with several major developments in the coronavirus outbreak. There's a cruise ship off San Francisco this morning that is not allowed to dock. There are more than 2,000 passengers on board, 21 people aboard the Grand Princess are showing potential coronavirus symptoms.

We know that one man who traveled on the ship last month has died. California's governor says they're going to air-lift test kits to the vessel immediately. And if you do the math, it does seem as many as 5,000 passengers who have sailed on this ship in the last month potentially could have been exposed, come in contact with someone with the virus.

END