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Trump Campaign Points Fingers After Lackluster Rally Turnout; Trump Heading To Arizona Where Cases Have Nearly Doubled In Two Weeks; John Bolton Details Chaotic Tenure Working with Trump; Some Black Voters To Turn Out To Vote Against Trump In November 2020; Protesters In Los Angeles Against Police Brutality; Queens Diner's New Drive-In Becomes A Hot Ticket In New York City. Aired 6-7p ET
Aired June 21, 2020 - 18:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN HOST: You are live in the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Boris Sanchez in for I'm Ana Cabrera.
On day one of the Trump presidency, it was all about crowd size. On day 1,248, it's still about crowd size. Today, the Trump campaign trying to blame all the empty seats inside his Tulsa rally on protesters and the media, as the city's fire marshal reports just under 6,200 were at the venue, the BOK Center, that can hold some 19,000.
The Trump team disputing that saying the number was actually closer to 12,000. Either way, attendance fell far short of expectations for what was supposed to be Trump's big return to the campaign trail. CNN has learned that while the president was en route to the event, he received a report that only about 25 people were assembled in an overflow space they thought would hold thousands, close to 40,000 according to Trump himself.
I want to bring in CNN's Kristen Holmes. She's at the White House.
Kristen, the Trump also pushing back on reports many that many of those who asked for tickets may have actually been trolling the president in a stunt organized through TikTok, the social media app. Tell us more.
KIRSTEN HOLMES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Boris. I'm going to go ahead and categorize this under 2020 is a wild time here. So just to give a little background, CNN has learned there was a coordinated effort on TikTok, the social media app, to get people to register for the event and then not show up. And while TikTok is mostly usually teenagers doing dancing videos, actually appears that a 51-year-old grandma in Iowa was driving a lot of this.
Now, I just want to note here that it's not just these reports. We also saw on Twitter a well-known Republican strategist who is a never Trumper posted that his daughter and her friends had hundreds of tickets. But what's more interesting than that was the responses on the tweet with other parents across the country saying their kids had done the exact same thing.
Now, the Trump campaign pushing back saying absolutely this had nothing to do with the crowd size. I'm going to pull up a statement here from President Trump's campaign manager who said, leftists and online trolls doing a victory lap thinking, they somehow impacted rally attendance don't know what they're talking about or how our rallies works. Registering for a rally means you RSVPd with a cell phone number and we constantly weed our bogus numbers. These phony ticket requests never factor into our thinking.
But, Boris, again, the fact that they even felt that they had to respond to this, to this movement that we were seeing to these rumors and accounts that this was happening, I mean, I think that in itself is its own story. It's very interesting that they put out an actual statement on this effort on TikTok.
SANCHEZ: Yes. And sources speaking to our colleague at the White House, Jim Acosta, actually saying that members of the first family are, quote, pissed at Brad Parscale for last night's ordeal, something else we could file under 2020 being just a wild year. Enter a cease and desist letter from the estate of late singer Tom Petty all because of this moment. Listen.
Everyone familiar, it's the song, Won't Back Down, from Tom Petty. What is his estate saying, Kirsten?
HOLMES: Well, Boris, we know President Trump has played this song in multiple of his rallies. And this is also not the first time a musician or a musician's family has stepped in. But I'll put up a statement here. This comes, as you said, from Tom Petty's estate.
It says, Trump was in no way authorized to use this song to further a campaign. That leaves too many Americans and common sense behind both the late Tom Petty and his family firmly stand against racism and discrimination of any kind. Tom Petty would never want a song of his used for a campaign of hate. He liked to bring people together.
So, very powerful words here, asking him to no longer play that song at rallies. Of course, we're going to have to wait until the next one to see if he sticks to that.
SANCHEZ: Yes. Even The Rolling Stones the president always plays, Can't Always Get What You Want, as the closing song at his rallies, they asked him to stop doing that back in 2016. The campaign has not. We'll see what happens next. Kristen Holmes reporting from the White House, thanks so much.
To discuss this and more, I want to bring in Senior Editor for The Atlantic, Ron Brownstein, and White House Correspondent for American Urban Networks, April Ryan.
First, I want to go to the Joe Biden campaign, how they're responding to President Trump's low turnout last night. Look at this statement. Quote, Donald Trump has abdicated leadership and it is no surprise that his supporters have responded by abandoning him.
Ron, first, to you, do you think low crowd size is an accurate reflection of support among President Trump's camp?
RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, look, President Trump has shown the capacity to turn out his core voters throughout 2016, 2018, whatever else went wrong, but I think this was warning sign for them, Boris. Not only -- especially because of the way the size of the crowd interacted with the direction of the message.
I mean, President Trump had weeks in which to prepare for this re- launch in effect of his campaign and he came back with essentially what he has always been doing, a message centered on cultural and racial division. And he attacked cities repeatedly. He attacked immigrants. He attacked MS-13. He attacked NFL players who kneel. He attacked Democratic women of color in the House. There was nothing in there that was designed to win back any of those suburban voters who have been drifting away from the GOP throughout his presidency.
The entire messaging was clearly aimed at mobilizing his core constituencies. It's clear that they think that is the pathway to win. It turned out even more of the voters drawn to this kind of confrontational approach. And the fact that they could not do so in the first rally after weeks of being on the shelf, I think it's a little a bit of worrisome sign for them, especially given the strategy that they're following.
SANCHEZ: And, April, I'm really curious to get your impression of what we saw last night, especially considering the backdrop. This was originally a rally that was scheduled for Juneteenth in Tulsa, a city that has a very complex and ugly history, one of the darkest chapters in American history with a race massacre to killed an untold number of African-Americans. What do you make of what the president said on the stage last night?
APRIL RYAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: What I make of it? First of all, size matters. And if Sean Spicer were there, Sean Spicer, White House press secretary would say, hey, this was the largest crowd ever. I'm referring back to back to the inauguration. But, you know, they cannot downplay this.
And for the sake of, no matter what size that arena would hold and what numbers were there, this conversation that we have, this rally, this rally that was racial, this rally was filled with falsehoods, people's lives were at stake. And that's the bottom line.
This president brought people there to come to hear messages of race, messages against Biden, and also a message about why he held his water with two hands and why he walked down the ramp the way he did, all in the face of death of coronavirus.
So I've covered presidents for 23 years. I've never seen a president put people in harm's way to deliver a nonsensical speech.
SANCHEZ: And you noted a racist remark that he made talking about coronavirus. Let's listen to exactly what the president said. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: When you do testing to that extent, you're going to find more people, you're going to find more cases. So I said to my people, slow the testing down, please.
It's a disease without question has more names than any disease in history. I can name kung flu --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: So aside from that derogatory remark, what did you make of the idea that he's asking administration officials to slow down testing?
RYAN: Slow down testing as you still have people dying. We have spikes in Oklahoma. We have spikes in Arizona. We have spikes in Alabama. It's nonsensical. People are dying. People are getting sick. We just heard yesterday that D.L. Hughley now has contracted COVID, a comedian, entertainer. This thing is not stopping.
And not only that, you have black and brown America dying disproportionately and he's saying slow down the testing, when people -- certain segments of society still are not being tested? It makes no sense. He is the president who took an oath to protect and serve. He has gone against his oath. He has violated his oath, putting people in harm's way and to say that that was not a joke.
And at this point, I'm tired of people, including myself, asking, Mr. President, are you a racist? Mr. President are you a white nationalist? Let's call it out. Let's call it out now. This has got to stop. People's lives are in danger. This is not about politics. And like I said yesterday, death does not know politics. This is about humanity. This is about the people he took an oath to serve.
SANCHEZ: Ron what do you make of the insistence from White House officials, including Peter Navarro, who I want to play a sound bite from, that the president was joking?
Let's get some of the sound bite. We'll get your answer on the other side.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PETER NAVARRO, WHITE HOUSE TRADE ADVISER: You know it was tongue in cheek.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: But the president --
NAVARRO: Come on now, that was tongue in cheek, please.
TAPPER: I don't know that it was tongue in cheek at all.
NAVARRO: I know it was tongue in cheek. That's news for you, tongue in cheek.
TAPPER: He has said similar things for months. He has said similar things for months.
NAVARRO: But, we've got over 30 million people unemployed and we've seen over 100,000 people die because of the China, Wuhan virus.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BROWNSTEIN: I'm not sure which is worse, whether he was joking or not. I mean, joking on the day that the caseload hit 30,000 again for the first time in over two months and we're, you know, around 120,000 dead.
You know, the challenge I think the president (INAUDIBLE) yesterday really reflected the challenge that he has and the treadmill he's on as he tries to find a way to a second term, because on one hand, his handling of the coronavirus, his mishandling of it, has imposed the greatest cost in the big metro centers.
It's spreading more widely, but the death tolls are still highest in big metro centers around the country. It was already eroding in 2016, further eroded in 2018, and for that matter where the protests over George Floyd are likely to do the most damage to him
And so you see what you witnessed last night. It was the president turning to kind of overtly racial remarks, like calling MS-13 animals and referring to the virus as kung flu in an effort to stir up voters outside of that, outside of those urban centers who respond the most to those polarizing cultural messages. The problem he has is that everybody is listening, Boris, that the people who are alienated from him hear these messages as much as the people who are attracted to him.
And I think he is on a treadmill where every (INAUDIBLE) to this to try to stir up and energize his base, he deepens the distance that he's facing in the most populace and economically prosperous parts of the country.
SANCHEZ: And, April, there are some really interesting reporting in The New York Times. They write that those closest to the president are questioning whether he truly wants to lead for another four years. Take a look what the paper writes. Quote, Mr. Trump doesn't want to be seen as a loser, a label he detests. But for now, they said that the president is acting trapped and defensive and his self-destructive behavior so out of step for an incumbent in an election year that many advisers wonder if he is truly interested in serving a second term.
What do you make of this reporting? I heard you laughing in the background.
RYAN: You know, his behavior is just out of step for humanity at this point. And you have to question if he's actually fit physically, if he's fit mentally and if he's just fit to fulfill the duties of president of the United States. That's one.
Two, Boris, when he talks about -- when they're talking about the president doesn't want to look like a loser, well, he's called me a loser and all I do is win, win, win no matter what. Moving on. But at end of the day, this president is led by ego, what it looks like, the winning picture.
And any president who runs, wants to have that second term, just to say, I got that second term, the presidents who received one term, many of them have, ah, one term. George W. Bush wanted to get that second term because his daddy did not get the second term. So he wanted to make sure another Republican president, this president, just for the sake alone, to have a second term for the ego.
But also number three, the most important thing, if Donald Trump loses this election bid, he will have to face many charges, because there are efforts under way right now with people compiling information, because once he becomes a civilian, Donald Trump may have to go to court and could possibly go to jail.
So there are two reasons ego and also the fact that he's running from the law if he does not win this election.
SANCHEZ: Well, I appreciate the perspective and always good to hear a T. Pain reference on CNN. April Ryan, Ron Brownstein, thank you both so much.
Up next, from Oklahoma to Arizona, the president is set to hold another campaign event in a state that's seeing an increase in new coronavirus cases. The former president of the American Medical Association joins us next to react.
You're live in the CNN Newsroom.
SANCHEZ: Welcome back.
The number of coronavirus cases in Arizona doubled nearly in the last two weeks, with the total now of more than 52,000 infections statewide. Phoenix also happens to be the next city to host a Trump rally next week.
Crowds at the rally in Tulsa last night were not as large as the campaign expected. But even if the Arizona rally follows suit, another large indoor gathering is cause for concern.
Dr. Patrice Harris joins me now. She's the former president of the American Medical Association. Dr. Harris, at last night's event, we saw very little social distancing, masks were optional and not very many people were wearing them. Do you think that needs to change before the next campaign event?
DR. PATRICE HARRIS, FORMER PRESIDENT, AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION: There is no question that any time you have a very large gathering with folks not wearing masks, with folks cheering and yelling, that is just a setup for a super spreader events, more cases, and ultimately more lives, and so on the face of already increased cases in Tulsa, and as you note, in Arizona.
And so these large events are just huge risks to the public and really should not happen at this moment in time.
SANCHEZ: I'm curious to get your thoughts on something that President Trump said last night at his Tulsa rally, pushing for schools to reopen.
Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: The kids are much stronger than us. When you see a little kid running around, say, boy, oh, boy, do you have a great immune system, how about a piece of your immune system? They don't even know about this. Let's open the schools, please. Open the schools.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: What are your thoughts on the best approach to getting kids back in school?
HARRIS: Well, there's no question that we should be planning school systems, and local governments should be planning for children to return to school. They should perhaps even do table-top exercises for how they might bring back the children to school, but ultimately, a lot will depend on the local spread at the time that schools open.
So I don't think we should just decide definitively today that schools should open, but certainly there should be planning and there should also be planning for alternate activities. I mean, this is what this lead-up time over the summer should allow us to do.
SANCHEZ: On top of the COVID epidemic, the country is still facing a social and racial reckoning after the death of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others. During your time as president of the AMA, the organization made a statement against police brutality. I'm curious how you think police violence against communities of color and other marginalized groups might impact their health.
HARRIS: Well, certainly there has been this triple threat to communities of color. Certainly COVID-19 disproportionately impacted black and brown communities, and then you have the constant and acute overt and covert acts of racism, and then you add police violence, all of these, again, impact the health of those in the black and brown communities. We know there are psychological effects. We know there are long-term effects related to cardiovascular disease, heart disease, when you look at trauma and its impact.
And so at the AMA, we made a very strong statement about police brutality, racism, and we continue to plan to have conversations, because, again, we talk about moments, we talk about movements, but we have to all move this into action. From our standpoint, we know that impacts health both in the short-term and in the long-term.
SANCHEZ: Yes. And really a unique challenge in the era that we are in is maintaining mental health, right, between the protests and the isolation that the pandemic imposed. Help us understand the mental toll that it takes? And if you could, explain some ways that people can manage their stress and mental health while also social distancing?
HARRIS: Pre-COVID, we had a crumbling foundation of long decades' worth of underfunding and underresourcing our mental health system. And certainly COVID-19, a new virus, and we didn't have a lot of information, and certainly our lives have been disrupted. And so you add to sort of the pre-COVID issues we had around mental health and you had COVID that just added to that.
And what we want to do and what I say to do certainly everyone should use their typical coping skills. First of all, they should allow themselves grace to feel what they're feeling, not have to great expectations but use their typical coping skills and ultimately ask for help if you need it. Sometimes you do need to reach out to someone else for help and that's okay.
SANCHEZ: And self-compassion and connection, always great, great things, great tools. Dr. Patrice Harris, thank you so much for spending a part of your Sunday with us.
HARRIS: Thank you for having me on, Boris.
SANCHEZ: Of course.
Coming up, we'll take a look inside the presidential -- the potential national security fallout from John Bolton's bombshell book. A conversation you won't want to miss, next in the CNN Newsroom.
SANCHEZ: Uninformed, unprepared, unfit, John Bolton's new book paints a dire picture of President Trump's time in the Oval Office. CNN's Sara Murray has a closer look.
SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Former National Security Adviser John Bolton casting President Trump as an uninformed, erratic liar.
MARTHA RADDATZ, ABC NEWS HOST: Is the president lying?
JOHN BOLTON, FORMER NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Yes, he is. And it's not the first time either.
MURRAY: Describing a commander in chief foreign adversary saw as an easy mark.
BOLTON: I think Putin thinks he can play him like a fiddle. I think Putin is smart, tough. I think he sees that he's not faced with a serious adversary here. I don't think he's worried about Donald Trump.
MURRAY: And claiming Trump was all too happy to take foreign help to boost his re-election bid.
Bolton's forthcoming book, The Room Where It Happened, a copy of which was obtained by CNN, offered this scathing summary of a Trump presidency. I am hard pressed to identify any significant Trump decision during my tenure that wasn't driven by re-election calculations. Trump pressed Chinese President Xi Jinping to help him out with farmers by buying more U.S. crops, pleading with Xi to ensure he'd win, Bolton writes. I would print Trump's exact words but the government's pre-publication review process decided otherwise.
Bolton also confirms the case House impeachment managers laid out earlier this year, writing that Trump said he would withhold security aid to Ukraine until all the Russia investigation materials related to Clinton and Biden had been turned over.
And he said Trump was prone to dolling out personal favors to dictators he liked. At one point telling the Turkish president he would replace Southern District of New York prosecutors to make an investigation into a Turkish firm go away. Bolton says, "The pattern looks like obstruction of justice as a way of life, which we couldn't accept," and claims he raised some of his concerns with Attorney General Bill Barr.
A longtime Republican who served in the Trump White House for 17 months, Bolton says deliberations there were like college food fights and calls Trump stunningly uninformed. Unsure that Britain was a nuclear power and unaware that Finland was not part of Russia.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN HOST: That was Sara Murray reporting. We're joined now by CNN national security analyst Sam Vinograd. She has the weekend presidential brief.
Sam, you're very familiar with how national security advisers operate. You were the senior adviser to former NSA director Tom Donilon. As we prepare for Bolton's interview tonight, upcoming media appearances including one on CNN on Wednesday on the "SITUATION ROOM" with Wolf Blitzer, what do you think John Bolton's goal is?
SAMANTHA VINOGRAD, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, Bolton may be trying to write his redemption song but the fact is he's deeply damaging his own reputation. According to Bolton's own words, he continued to serve as national security adviser while he witnessed the president destroying U.S. national security.
According to Bolton's own words, he had information directly relevant to the impeachment inquiry and he failed to testify or speak up publicly. And according to a judge's ruling yesterday Bolton's own words likely jeopardize U.S. security by disclosing classified information.
But, Boris, Bolton isn't the only bad actor here. Bolton is accusing administration officials of abusing the pre-publication review process to censor unflattering content about the president from getting out. This isn't the first time the administration has been accused of overplaying the classification card, and finally, of course, we have what Bolton writes about the president himself.
He really paints him as a live threat to U.S. national security. So this plot is really full of dangerous actors and is woefully missing a protagonist.
SANCHEZ: Given the excerpts of the book that have been put out and the interview Bolton has done, excerpts of that interview, do you think the content of the book is damaging for America's national security the way the Trump administration claims?
VINOGRAD: Well, Trump is a creature of habit. And for anybody that's been awake for the last four years, nothing in this book really comes as a surprise. Bolton alleges, for example, that Trump wanted to intervene in a case against a Turkish bank because Erdogan asked him to. This isn't the first time that Trump has tried to cozy up to a despot or to interfere in legal proceedings to benefit a friend. Just look at what he did during the Flynn case or the Roger Stone case, and sentencing.
Bolton alleges that Trump was pro-concentration camps for Uighurs. We know that President Trump trashes human rights around the world including here at home. Just look at what he did towards peaceful protesters here in the United States just a few weeks ago. And when it comes to foreign election interference we have Trump's track record during the 2016 election cycle, and his publicly stating that he was open to receiving foreign dirt on a political rival.
That's why when Bolton alleges that Trump asked President Xi Jinping for Chinese election interference, it doesn't seem non-credible. So overall this book really just adds more color to what we already knew about the president.
SANCHEZ: You make the argument that there's nothing really surprising in the book, but you think it might make any difference long term?
VINOGRAD: Well, it depends how you mean. From an accountability standpoint, Congress is unlikely to hold President Trump accountable for the actions described in this book because Republicans will stymie any effort at accountability. Accountability at the ballot box is more of a mixed question. Particularly because in this book Bolton throws even more cold water on the president's claim that he was tough on China.
The president isn't just soft on China. He may be talking to China according to Bolton. But accountability aside, the damage to our national security is already done. It is clear that nothing about the content of this book is a vote of confidence in the credibility of the administration. So while Bolton may not seek profits from this book it is a huge payday for rival powers like Russia and other enemies of the United States.
SANCHEZ: All right. Sam Vinograd, we appreciate your perspective, your thoughts. Thanks so much.
As we go to break, here's CNN's Christine Romans with this week's "Before the Bell."
CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Tech stocks have led the stock market advance and they'll be in focus again this week. Apple holds its worldwide developers conference tomorrow. Of course the event will be fully virtual.
Apple shares are up 20 percent this year. Investors are looking for the company to deliver updates on software and services. As for the overall market, investors are focusing on positives. Stimulus from the Federal Reserve and better-than-expected economic data spurred buying despite a rise in coronavirus infections.
This week, we'll get a look at the housing market. Data on new and existing home sales are due for May. Economists say both buyers and sellers and beginning to return to the market. Housing starts rose 4.3 percent in May and building permits, a sign of future construction, surged more than 14 percent.
In New York, I'm Christine Romans.
SANCHEZ: Tonight some black voters who stayed on the sidelines in 2016 say they will make their voices heard in 2020. CNN's Jeff Zeleny has more.
JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Mariah Smith has been marching and come November she will be voting.
MARIAH SMITH, TEACHER'S AIDE: If you don't go out and vote, you're voting for Trump, period. That's it. There is no other -- there's no other way around it.
ZELENY: With tributes to George Floyd and Breonna Taylor painted across Milwaukee, along with murals and signs calling for peace and justice, the soundtrack of American politics is now animated by protests, with anger toward President Trump resonating far louder than adoration for Joe Biden.
PRENTICE MCKENNEY, MILWAUKEE ACTIVIST: There's a time when you go to the polls to vote for something. And then there's a time when you go and you take a stand against something.
ZELENY: Prentice McKenney has been watching these demonstrations closely, stirring memories from 1967, when he helped lead a fight for fair housing in 200 straight days of marches. These images seared into his mind like coming face to face with two policemen outside the mayor's office.
In today's protest, he sees broader diversity with a unifying purpose.
MCKENNEY: Part of the universal appeal of this movement is because of Donald Trump, because people realized who and what he is.
ZELENY: Here in one of the nation's most segregated cities, a summer of unrest is now part of the presidential race that will test whether protesters have awakened a political movement.
ANGELA LANG, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, BLACK LEADERS ORGANIZING FOR COMMUNITIES: There are people that are like, I didn't know Trump was racist. What do you mean he's racist? Point to something very clear and specific. We can point to this moment, just a few months ahead of the presidential election, about how he's treating our community.
ZELENY: Angela Lang founded a group to mobilize African-Americans after Trump narrowly carried Wisconsin in 2016, when turnout among black voters and others substantially fell. Since then, there are some signs of change. In April, David Crowley was elected as the first African-American Milwaukee County executive, a seat once held by Republican, former governor Scott Walker.
DAVID CROWLEY (D), MILWAUKEE COUNTY EXECUTIVE: This election matters because people know that we need absolute change.
ZELENY: The Trump campaign isn't ceding black voters, opening a Republican field office here on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, with a quote from the slain civil rights leader in the window.
David Bowen, a Democratic state representative, said voters should not be fooled.
DAVID BOWEN (D), WISCONSIN STATE ASSEMBLY: It's very offensive to the standpoint that nothing in his administration or that he's done really lines up with those words.
ZELENY: Protests in Milwaukee are approaching a third straight week, organized by Frank Sensabaugh, who said he intentionally didn't vote four years ago.
(On camera): Do you plan to vote this November?
FRANK NITTY SENSABAUGH, MILWAUKEE PROTEST ORGANIZER: This November, yes, I actually do plan to vote. This November I think that it's going to be more serious of a vote.
ZELENY (voice over): And that gives hope to McKenney, that these young demonstrators will keep their eye on November.
MCKENNEY: I think they'll be there. I think that's what Trump is afraid of.
ZELENY: Jeff Zeleny, CNN, Milwaukee.
SANCHEZ: Thanks to Jeff Zeleny for that report.
Up next, no, you have not taken a time machine back to the 1950s. This is the new hit spot in New York City amid social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic. A drive-in. We'll take you there, next.
SANCHEZ: People are again taking to the streets in Southern California today for the fourth weekend in a row. Protesters are calling for an end to police brutality and racial injustice. Meantime, calls are growing for an independent inquiry into the death of a man killed by a Los Angeles sheriff's deputy just days ago.
CNN's Paul Vercammen is in Compton, California.
Paul, what are you seeing there?
PAUL VERCAMMEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Boris, we'll show you what we're seeing. This is a march, a protest, and there is smoldering rage in this crowd right now over the death of Andres Guardado. He was 18 years old. According to family members, he was simply working as a security guard at an auto body shop when he was shot and killed by Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies that around 6:00 on Thursday, and we spoke to his cousins, and they are absolutely floored by what happened.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SELINA ABARCA, COUSIN OF MAN FATALLY SHOT BY POLICE: I can't. You know, he was a baby. He was a baby. I don't know. It's still not real. Still I close my eyes and I hope and I pray that it's not really happening. And --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VERCAMMEN: So the question here is what happened? The sheriff has come out and said that they had no idea that Guardado was working as a security guard. They said that officers were responding to something at the auto body shop. They also pointed out that they found a weapon on Guardado after and they said that this was an illegal handgun.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KURT WEGENER, LOS ANGELES COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT: A 40-caliber semiautomatic pistol was recovered at the scene. That firearm had a polymer frame with no markings or serial number. It had a Smith & Wesson upper slide and a prohibited extended magazine with a 15-round capacity made by Glock. There were 13 live rounds loaded in that firearm.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VERCAMMEN: But what's still unclear is why did the deputy fire. And that's the mystery that's trying to be solved. The sheriff is asking everyone to be patient with the investigation and others are calling for other agencies in California, including the attorney general, to try to find out what led to the death of Andres Guardado. And if you see a lot of blue and white, we should note that Andres' parents were from El Salvador and there were also a lot of Dodger fans here, and that's why we see all the sea of blue and white as we march toward the sheriff's substation here in Compton.
Reporting from Compton, I'm Paul Vercammen. Back to you now, Boris.
SANCHEZ: All right. A story we should certainly keep an eye on. Paul Vercammen, thanks for your reporting from Compton.
Shifting gears here, tomorrow the city of New York is going to take another step towards reopening by bringing back some simple pleasures like restaurants, haircuts and in-store shopping. One diner in Queens that initially struggled during the lockdown found a creative way to become one of the city's go-to destinations.
CNN's Bill Weir takes us there.
BILL WEIR, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): You've heard the slogan, always open? Well, the Bel Aire Diner in Queens hasn't locked their doors in 22 years.
(On camera): What was it like to realize that you had to shut down?
KALERGIS DELLAPORTAS, GENERAL MANAGER, BEL AIRE DINER: Oh, man, it was scary, depressing, you know, we've been continuously open 24/7 for 22 years.
WEIR (voice-over): When pandemic business dropped 70 percent and they were forced to lay off 20-year employees, it looked like that iron streak would end. Until a flash of inspiration from the past.
(On camera): So, what are you looking for? A blue Honda in the third row?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Blue Honda, third row.
WEIR: Should have brought my roller blades? Oh, look, there's two milkshakes going that way.
(Voice-over): Welcome to New York City's first ever pandemic drive-in theater. At 32 bucks a car patrons get films like "Ferris Bueller's Day Off." And after ordering online they get masked carhops.
(On camera): Have you ever been to a drive-in movie before?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's my first time.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. No, I've never been to one.
WEIR: Welcome to the pinnacle of entertainment in 1955.
Now, back in my day in order to go to a drive-in movie we snuck people in in the trunk so we wouldn't have to pay full price. Do you have anybody in your trunk?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We do not at this time.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A tip for next time.
WEIR (voice-over): To maximize sales they have two seatings or parkings, starting with dueling pianos or standup comedy.
ROBYN SCHALL, STANDUP COMEDIAN: Believe it or not, this is -- this is not the weirdest thing I've done in a parking lot.
WEIR (on camera): Very funny set.
SCHALL: Thank you. It feels so good to be doing standup live.
WEIR: I bet.
SCHALL: Oh, my god. Such a high.
WEIR: Even though you can't hear laughter.
SCHALL: I did. I could see the laughter, I could feel it, it was a vibe. It was a vibe. And they would like flash their lights.
WEIR (voice-over): Tickets sell out in minutes. There are even scalpers on Instagram.
DELLAPORTAS: I would have never ever, ever imagined like driving and then now we've become like, you know, Ticketmaster. I -- I made a joke with someone, like, we're the Beatles now, we sell out -- you know, we sell out in five minutes.
WEIR: Between this and a government loan they've hired back almost all the staff. But equally important is how they've again become a hub of human connection, as neighbors cut off for months can finally share something in person.
DELLAPORTAS: Next-door neighbors, they ended up in the same parking spaces, and yet they hadn't seen each other in seven weeks, and it was just like, oh, my God. So, like really upbeat. People thank us constantly. It's an awesome feeling.
WEIR: As the last few hundred drive-ins left in the U.S. experience a renaissance. The Bel Aire may be inspiration for other struggling restaurants, willing to turn an empty lot into profit, and a much needed taste of better days.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Life moves pretty fast.
WEIR: Bill Weir, CNN, Queens, New York.
SANCHEZ: Hey, thank you so much for joining us tonight. I'm Boris Sanchez in Washington, D.C. My colleague Wolf Blitzer picks up our coverage with a special edition of "THE SITUATION ROOM" right after a quick break. Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there.