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Trump Says Mail-In Voting Is Biggest Threat To His Re-Election; Twitter Labels Trump Video "Manipulated", Facebook Removes Ad; NBA Players Lend Voice To Call For Social Change. Aired 12:30-1p ET

Aired June 19, 2020 - 12:30   ET



JOHN KING, CNN HOST: -- voting.

KIM WEHLE, LAW PROFESSOR: Well, presumably because he's in a position with so much chaos and so many problems with the economy and people dying and et cetera, et cetera, that he is having a hard time attracting new voters to his campaign.

And so presumably the way to win the election would be to keep people home. And that's a pretty old page from the playbook that has unfortunately plagued American electoral politics since the founding of the Republic.

KING: But one of the things that's very helpful and timely about your book is that we always talk about we're going through 50-state experiments when it comes to coronavirus right now and the reopening and how to handle that.

We also have 50 states because the states in our Republic set the rules for voting. And so every state is now having this conversation. We've watched it play out in the primaries. We've watched primary delayed. What should we do about November? How safe will it be? Some of them also have new technology.

So when you were studying this to put together the book, what strikes you the most? What is the most important thing, you know, somebody who's out there watching, they're all in different states, what do they need to know about how to track what's happening in their state so they're sure that they are protected and they know the rules, they know how to get it right come November?

WEHLE: Yes. Well, they can look at my website, If you click on the book, I have an updated weekly summary of all the states and COVID related legislation. But right now, there are only five states actually that have not opened mail-in ballot options to people on the basis of COVID.

Prior to that, a lot of mail-in, you had to have an excuse. So in most states, you can do it. Texas as an exception, that's in litigation. And that's obviously an important state. So the message really is to avoid what happened in Wisconsin, apply now to exercise your right to vote through a mail-in ballot so that your state doesn't end up with so many applications so close to the actual election date that they can't process and that's what happened in Wisconsin.

It went to the Supreme Court of the United States and some people were disenfranchised. And the backup is if for whatever reason you don't get your ballot in time, we know that the Postal Service is running out of money in September. The President has vetoed to, has promised to veto any legislation to bail out the Postal Service. And it can be slow.

If that's the case, look up in your state's secretary of state website for the most updated information about early voting. Worst case scenario, you show up at the polls on the day with your hand sanitizer, with your masks, as your prior guests mentioned, can really minimize your exposure to this deadly virus and wait for as long as you have to.

If the polls are open, when you show up, they have to let you vote. If you show up and they've -- you've been pushed off the polls or you're in the wrong place. This does happen. Ask for what's known as a provisional ballot. Under federal law, you have to be given a provisional ballot. Some states you're going to have to follow up with your I.D. afterwards.

That's really the step, the step by step process. We're in a moment where every person has to take this election into their own hands. Government is not in a position to save the process. And there's so much riding on it not just the issues you care about but American democracy itself.

It's a user lose moment for democracy. If we get to the other side and we choose something other than democracy, my fear, it'll be closer to authoritarianism. And that's not good for anyone across the political spectrum, Democrat, Republican, Independent, non-voter that is really a dark place for all of America. So please register right now.

KING: Register right now. And the planning part, I think was excellent advice. We don't know what's going to happen. We don't know how chaotic the times will be as we get closer to am election. So, plan now, figure out your state now, apply for that ballot now if you think you're going to need it.

Kim Wehle, the author of "What You Need to Know About Voting and Why" very timely. This will be a discussion from now through the election. Kim, thanks so much for coming in today.

WEHLE: Thanks, John.

KING: You're welcome. Thank you.


Still ahead for us, Facebook takes down a Trump campaign ad because it says has hate symbols.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) KING: In the past 24 hours, both Twitter and Facebook, either flagging or removing videos posted by the President that the organization say violate their rules.

Facebook removed the Trump campaign ad featuring an upside down triangle, that triangle similar to a symbol used by the Nazis, Twitter labeling a video posted by the President as manipulated media.

CNN's Donie O'Sullivan is tracking all of this for us. Donie, why did they decide it's rare that they take these steps? Why in these cases?

DONIE O'SULLIVAN, CNN REPORTER: Hey, John. Yes, you might remember this great video from last year of two toddlers excitingly running to give each other a hug.

CNN at the time covered that video for what it was, a heartwarming video. The parents saying that they shared the video of the boys, you know, one black and one white as perhaps a good example, a lesson to us adults amid all the racism in the world.

But Trump last night took a version of that video and added some fake CNN graphics to it. And he suggested that CNN would spin a video like this to make it look like the kids are actually running away from each other rather than running towards one another, this of course last night on the eve of Juneteenth.

Twitter labeled that video as manipulated media. They have an -- that's under a new policy they have for misleading pictures and videos and deep fakes. And I should note that the video is also on Facebook, where it now has 4 million views. Facebook is doing nothing about us.

And but Trump supporters last night online immediately jumped to the President's defense saying, you know, this video is a parody satire, it's not gas lighting, and that we all frankly need to get a better sense of humor.

But one person that certainly did not find this funny was one of the dads of one of the boys in that video. And he posted on Facebook last night saying that Trump can't get away with this. He said he will not turn this loving beautiful video to further his hate agenda, John.


KING: Well, Donie, there you have it. Citizens speak up. That's the best against this is when good citizens speak up and make their views clear. Donie O'Sullivan, appreciate that very much.

Up next for us, it is Juneteenth. It is a holiday being marked across the country, including by several NBA teams, those NBA teams also getting ready to resume play. Garrett Temple from the Brooklyn Nets joins us next.


[12:45:24] KING: You see live pictures there, that is New York City on this Juneteenth, the noon hour, marching in the streets and chanting. You see the signs as well Black Lives Matter and other issues. This one of several marches we're seeing across the country today on Juneteenth, the day that commemorates the emancipation of slaves in the United States.

Members of the Washington Wizards, Washington Mystics, we can show you them as well. Basketball teams marching here in Washington D.C. from their arena pass the African-American History Museum to the Martin Luther King Memorial, right here in Washington D.C. these pro athletes, adding their voices and their feet to this movement for change in the country.

Joining me now is Garrett Temple, a former Washington Wizards now plays for the Brooklyn Nets, vice president as well as of the National Basketball Players Association. Garrett, Wizards season ticket holder, I wish he was still here in D.C. but that's water under the bridge, I guess. We will not dwell on that on this day.

I want to talk to this a very interesting moment. You're from a family that has been very active in the civil rights movement. You see the reckoning going on around the country, whether it's Rayshard Brooks and George Floyd here on Juneteenth. Also at a moment when there's a conversation about the coronavirus, its impact on the African-American community and the economic reopening. You're getting ready to come back to play.

Let's just start with the moment. Are you convinced as someone who watched your grandfather and watched your father and who has social progress in your bloodstream, are you convinced that this is a moment not just a protest but will be a moment of change?

GARRETT TEMPLE, VP, NATIONAL BASKETBALL PLAYERS ASSOCIATION: No question. First of all, thanks for having me, John. I miss D.C. as well just to put that out there.

I do believe that this is the moment for change. I've spoke -- I had a couple of conversations with a lot of people. And the biggest difference this time is that I feel like we have more ally. The black community with 13 percent but I feel like white America or non-black Americans are willing to help us fight and get this thing changed.

KING: And in terms of change, I want to read to you from your commissioner, who is a white man but also a very socially active and progressive white man Adam Silver talking about A, getting the league back. The league was at the beginning of America shutting down. He wants the league to get back on the court. And he says players like yourself, have an opportunity to make a statement here.

Some of his best known black people in the world, whether it be the NBA or the WNBA play in our league, I really think there's a unique opportunity for this league, maybe more so than any other institution in the world. But what comes with it is an obligation and responsibility to think before we speak.

A, do you agree with the commissioner there and how do you take that responsibility?

TEMPLE: I do believe that we have a responsibility. I agree with him. I think we have an obligation. First and foremost with the platform that we have, we definitely need to think before we speak. But also, because of the platform that we have, we can touch a lot of -- a lot more people than if we did not have this platform.

I think the cameras that will be on u s in Orlando, the audience that we will have watching, will get a chance, an opportunity to really bring even more awareness to this issue.

KING: And take me through a little bit of the family history. Your dad Integrated LSU basketball team, your grandfather challenge segregation laws, you know, we talked about the Dr. King's and the John Lewis's but it's also important that names we don't know or names that people might not know nationally are taking steps every day in their own way in their family and in their community.

You can't escape this. I'm not saying you want to for a minute. This is -- but this is in your blood.

TEMPLE: No question. So my grandfather Collis Temple Sr. went to Southern University, the HBCU and Baton Rouge Louisiana to get his graduate -- the undergrad degree. He tried to go to LSU right after my father was born to get his master's degree and was denied because of the color of his skin.

Thurgood Marshall had a class action lawsuit against the public universities in the south. My grandfather was going to join LSU ended up appropriating funds for my grandfather to go to any other school, except LSU. So he ended up going to Michigan State to get his master's.

Fast forward, 16 years later, and my dad became the first African- American to play on the varsity basketball team at LSU. So my grandfather put his pride aside and understood and believed that my father integrating the program would be best for black students in the future. And, you know, the rest is history.

KING: The rest is history, but it's important history. We appreciate your sharing it with us.

On the question of coming back to play, one of your teammates, Kyrie Irving, who is not shy of speaking his views, as you well know, he says I don't support going into Orlando. I'm not with the systemic racism and the BS, something smells a little fishy. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are targeted as black men every day we wake up.


Have you spoken to Kyrie and what do you say to other players, your union rep as well as a player on the Nets who say, you know, I'm not sure we want to do this right now?

TEMPLE: Yes. I've definitely spoken to Kyrie. And, you know, I understand what he's saying. I think it's a choice. It's individual choice by each player. Ky, as you said, will speak his mind and we love that about him. I think in each individual player needs to decide whether they want to go or not. And what they want to get from this.

I think we all at the end of the day, are fighting the same battle and they're, you know, a lot of different ways to skin a cat. So, I personally believe that we have an opportunity to, as I say, you know, continue to speak on the things that we believe in with the amount of have cameras and the audience that we will have there. Guys that do not believe that, they believe that they should -- shouldn't they don't want to go, I completely support them.

And, you know, everybody's not going to have the same exact thoughts. But we still have brotherhood.

KING: Are you certain that we will have NBA back on the court at the end of July as planned?

TEMPLE: I'm not starting. I'm not the guy that can hit the switch. But I do believe that we will. And I'm ready to get back to playing. This is our job. But at the end of the day, I think as I said, we can still make a difference while we still play the game.

KING: Garrett Temple, thanks for sharing your time today, and especially the story of your remarkable family. We're very grateful for it.

TEMPLE: Thanks, John.

KING: Thank you, Sir, best of luck in the days ahead.

President Trump picking another public fight with a scientist at the top of his administration just tweeting just moments ago, Tony Fauci has nothing to do with NFL football. They are planning a very safe and controlled opening. That's the President's view. Dr. Fauci yesterday, telling CNN Sanjay Gupta, he believes football may not happen this year due to a number of factors or that if it does happen, the NFL will likely have to put its players in some sort of a bubble to isolate them from the community and the coronavirus risk.

Still ahead for us, a global look of coronavirus cases surging in Latin America.



KING: Some encouraging news today out of China. Health officials there say a coronavirus outbreak at a Beijing market now under control. For more on that, let's go to CNN's David Culver and some others for the global headlines about coronavirus, David?


DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Here in China, health officials say that they have this most recent cluster outbreak, quote, under control. They have 183 confirmed cases in the past week or so. All of this linked to an outbreak that started in a market not too far from here, but that market has been blocked off. They put up physical barriers.

We've seen some of the freedoms that were given in the past few weeks taken away and restrictions put back in place, places like public spaces, restaurants, bars, gyms, shutting back down in some of those, quote unquote, high risk areas as they have labeled it. And they are keeping people who live in those areas, those high risk regions, sealed inside their homes.

It's Wuhan-style like lockdowns for those individuals. Outside of those compartmentalized areas within Beijing, life continues as mostly normal. However, they are pushing one narrative in particular here and that is that this strand that started in that market is not the same one that started in Wuhan. They say, this is a European strand hence it was imported. Hence the threat is external.

David Culver, CNN, Beijing.

MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, here in Latin America, the outbreak in many places just continues to get worse and we know it's affecting government leaders as well start in Honduras where this week President Hernandez announced that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

He said he started feeling sick. Last weekend, he got diagnosed on Tuesday. He still has mild symptoms but says he's able to do his job while working in isolation. He also announced that his wife and two presidential aides have tested positive as well.

Also in Argentina, we know the president there has entered into voluntary isolation. He has not tested positive for the virus yet, but the presidential office says that the president has come into contact with someone who had been exposed to the virus.

And finally in Nicaragua, we know at least a half a dozen politicians in that country have died in recent weeks although only vague details have been given about their deaths. Critics say that Nicaragua has been hiding the true extent of the outbreak in that country.

Matt Rivers, CNN, Mexico City.

FRED PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well here in Portugal, local health authorities say one of the reasons why this country has a fairly low death toll from the novel coronavirus might be because they've been using a treatment that the World Health Organization now says could be a breakthrough.

Doctors at ICU wards here have been using steroids to treat patients who are on ventilators and to try and curb inflammation in the lungs. They say that has helped them keep the death toll on ICU wards at a fairly low rate.

Now all of this comes as Portugal is now opening up its economy and hoping that tourism will come back to this country fairly quickly, this country of course, heavily reliant on tourism for its economic recovery.

Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Lisbon.


KING: Thanks for sharing your day with us. Hope to see you back here Sunday morning, 8 o'clock I'll be here. Also, see you Monday as well.


Brianna Keilar picks up our coverage on a busy news day right now. Have a good weekend.