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Trump Implies Clemency for Stone; Trump Attacks IRS; Disney World Reopens; CDC Has No Guidance for School Reopenings; Trump Heads to Miami-Dade County; Big Ten to Play only Conference Games. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired July 10, 2020 - 06:30   ET



JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN CHIEF LEGAL ANALYST: Well, even William Barr, the attorney general, who is usually very differential to the president, has said he thinks it was an appropriate prosecution. He think the -- the revised sentence that the -- that Judge Berman imposed was correct. So this would not just be swampy, it would be against the wishes of his usually subservient attorney general. That's how outrageous a pardon or a commutation would be of Roger Stone.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: But there's every reason to believe it's coming. Let's just be clear. The president is hinting at it and it will probably come in the next few days if we take the president at his word here because Roger Stone, the Justice Department wants him to report to prison on Tuesday.

TOOBIN: I don't see how you could interpret the president's words as anything other than a commutation or pardon is imminent. And Roger Stone will never spend a day in jail because he's the president's friend, period.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Jeffery, the president, last night, was on "Hannity" and he was bragging about this cognitive test that he recently took. We don't know why he took it. We don't know the results of it. He claims he aced it. Sorry, that's a funny word for a cognitive test. In any event, when you hear his answer to this next question about the IRS audit, you will have reason to wonder if he actually aced a cognitive test.

Listen to what he tries to say about whether or not he's still under audit.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And I'm under tax audit. I have been for a long period of time. We made a deal a long time ago and once I ran for politics, that deal was like we didn't make it. So I'm under a continuing audit. And anybody that did that or showed that before you have it finalized, but they treat -- they treat me horribly, the IRS, horribly. It's a disgrace what's happened. We had a deal done. In fact it was -- I guess it was signed even. And once I ran or once I won or somewhere back a long time ago, everything was like, well, let's start all over again.


CAMEROTA: What was he saying there, Jeffrey?

TOOBIN: You know, Alisyn, I've spoken English since I was a little boy, and I -- I think I'm fluent, but -- but I don't understand one word in that -- that answer. So you tell me. I have no idea. I mean the -- what he's saying is he's still not releasing his tax returns. That's what he's saying. But that statement was complexly meaningless as far as I can tell.

BERMAN: I think there's an attack there on the government, which he is the figurehead of at this point. I've -- there was that. There was some lie about why he hasn't turned over his taxes already, which he could do even if he is under audit. That seemed to be in there as well.

First of all, all of this, and the (INAUDIBLE) concerns me, again, because we're in a pandemic and 133,000 Americans have died and I haven't seen that the president understanding this or understands the facts of it.

Be that as it may, Jeffrey, this tax issue also has to do with a Supreme Court ruling yesterday.

TOOBIN: Right.

BERMAN: A major ruling. A major ruling. A landmark ruling on presidential rights and power, but one that may not have an imminent impact on this president, this president. Can you explain?

TOOBIN: Well, I think it's -- it's helpful to divide the two cases that were divided -- that were decided yesterday and treat them separately.

In the case of the subpoena by the New York City District Attorney, the Manhattan D.A., Cyrus Vance. Vance won that. Vance is going to get the president's tax returns and various financial documents from his accountant. When he gets it is not settled, and those documents will not be made public. That's part of a secret grand jury investigation. But there is no doubt that that -- that case, that investigation, will go forward. Whether it results in any charges, I don't know.

The president did better in the congressional case. That case was sent back for more proceedings and it's not at all clear that Congress will ever get the financial documents it's seeking. And it certainly will not get them before the election.

But the -- both cases were a clear statement that the president of the United States is not above the law and can be investigated. But because these cases took so long to get through the judicial system, the president is safe from disclosure, so he will again face the voters without having released his tax returns, as the only candidate who have done so in the modern era. CAMEROTA: I mean, generally -- we were looking back at the research,

and, generally, if you're audited, the general resolution time is three years. That has passed since the president claims, without offering any evidence, that he's being audited. It can last longer. But, again, everybody's just having to take him at his word, and his word is, as you point out, often unintelligible on that subject, Jeffrey.

TOOBIN: It certainly was yesterday.


CAMEROTA: Jeffrey Toobin, thank you.

TOOBIN: All right.

BERMAN: So, new this morning, Senator Tammy Duckworth, a Purple Heart recipient who lose her legs in Iraq, fighting back against Fox host Tucker Carlson and President Trump after Carlson said she, quote, hates America for saying there should be a national dialogue about removing statues of the founding fathers. Duckworth wrote an op-ed in "The New York Times" and said she will not be deterred by, quote, self-serving, insecure men who can't tell the difference between true patriotism and hateful nationalism. She noted, while I would put on my old uniform and go to war all over again to protect the right of Tucker Carlson and Donald Trump to say offensive things on TV and Twitter, I will also spend every moment I can, from now until November, fighting to elect leaders who would rather do good for their country than do well for themselves.

So, after closing for 116 days, Walt Disney World reopening to the public tomorrow, even though coronavirus cases are soaring in Florida. We have details and a live report, next.



JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: This morning, Coronavirus cases in Florida are surging, but Walt Disney World is moving forward with opening doors to the public tomorrow. This video is from the theme park opening to seasoned pass holders. That was yesterday.

CNN's Natasha Chen joins us now with the very latest.

Cases rising not just in Florida but also Orange County, where Walt Disney World is.

NATASHA CHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, John. And that's why it's so important, the stakes are so high for Disney to get this right. Orange County officials yesterday said that they have confidence in the theme parks with their plans to do this safely. A health officer in Orange County yesterday said that while there have been isolated coronavirus cases that have mentioned the theme parks that have been reopened, he said there's no evidence that there's been any outbreak so far stemming from theme parks. Now, Disney gave cast members, or their employees, previews earlier

this week. Annual pass holders got to start previews yesterday. And then the public gets to reenter Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom tomorrow, followed by Epcot and Disney's Hollywood Studios on July 15th with a lot of changes, of course. You have to reserve your attendance in advance so they can keep numbers very low. And they have to have everyone go through temperature screenings and wearing face masks with the ear loops. So no gator (ph) or bandana-type of masks at all.

Here's a pass holder I spoke to yesterday about her experience.


ERICA M., WALT DISNEY WORLD ANNUAL PASSHOLDER: I do feel a bit nervous when trying to do all the things I love and enjoy doing again, but also remembering to do them as safely as I possibly can. So I just made sure I went the extra mile to keep myself, as well as others safe by wearing an N-95 mask in the parks, social distancing from other park goers, packing Clorox wipes, packing hand sanitizer, keeping my hands clean at all the different hand washing stations.


CHEN: Our colleague, Cristina Alesci, reported yesterday that the Actors Equity Union actually filed a grievance against Disney, saying that the company had retaliated against their performers when they requested coronavirus testing. Disney has yet to respond to Cristina's reporting about that.


CAMEROTA: Natasha, it is complicated. Thank you very much for explaining all of that to us.

So, CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said at a CNN coronavirus town hall last night that they will stand by their original guidance on reopening schools. The new school year is just weeks away in some places. So what's the plan?

CNN's Bianna Golodryga joins us now with more.

What is the plan, Bianna?

BIANNA GOLODRYGA, CNN SENIOR GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Alisyn, school districts are still trying to figure that out. And as one education expert told me, safely reopening schools for the fall should have been a nationwide top priority since the day they were closed back in March. Now, of course, that would have meant a more gradual reopening of the economy with the goal of keeping the infection rate lower. Instead, the president is now demanding that all schools reopen as the country sets yet another record high of infections.


DR. ROBERT REDFIELD, DIRECTOR, CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION: I think there's commonality in the schools and the school leadership and the teachers and the administrators that we all want to protect the safety of the children that are in schools.

GOLODRYGA (voice over): The CDC director on CNN's coronavirus town hall, attempting to clear up the mask confusion caused by the president's shocking threat to withhold federal funding for schools that do not fully reopen, something he does not have the legal authority to do on his own, as well as his rebuke of the CDC guidelines.

REDFIELD: We stand by our guidance. We think it's an important strategy for helping these schools reopen.

GOLODRYGA: For months school districts nationwide have been scrambling, trying to figure out just how to reopen safely, as the acting superintendent of the Houston Independent School District showed CNN back in May.

GRENITA LATHAN, INTERIM SUPERINTENDENT, HOUSTON INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT: So we think about students per table. Possibly two students per table or it might even turn into one student per table as we think about having just about 11 students in a classroom at a time.

GOLODRYGA: Since then, more districts have announced similar plans. Most recently, Mayor Bill de Blasio telling New York City's more than one million public school students they should plan to only spend one to three days a week inside a classroom. The other school days will be held online.

MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), NEW YORK CITY: Some points in the week you're learning in person in the classrooms. At other points of the week, you're learning remotely.

GOLODRYGA: Local officials have relied on guidelines issued by state and federal health authorities, as well as the CDC. One of its top recommendations has been to maintain social distancing among students.

The hybrid model, where children would be divided into smaller groups, rotating hours and days in class, seems to be among the most feasible. But after months of inaction, the Trump administration is now pushing hard for schools to reopen full time in the fall. An endeavor made even more challenging as numerous states continue to see spikes in cases.


In Florida, the education commissioner issued an emergency order this week requiring all schools to open at least five days per week for all students.

GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): If you can do Home Depot, if you can do Walmart, if you can do these things, we absolutely can do the schools.

GOLODRYGA: But some educators in the state are now saying they won't follow the order if cases don't start to go down.



CARVALHO: With positivity cases increasing, with restaurants just this week being shut down again, for us to pick up schools.

GOLODRYGA: In Texas, Governor Greg Abbott said schools would have to offer more flexibility. In Arizona, Governor Doug Ducey announced that in person classes will be delayed until at least August 17th. In California, Governor Gavin Newsom saying that schools will reopen when the data says it's safe to do so.

Experts say it didn't have to be this frustrating, but there still is time to get it right.

JOSEPH ALLEN, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, HARVARD SCHOOL OF PUBLIC HEALTH: The time to plan is absolutely right now. In particularly, when we think about healthy building strategies, schools have to be paying attention to and looking at their mechanical and ventilation systems right now. This is not something that can be started in early August.


GOLODRYGA: Now, Alisyn, among the discrepancies between the CDC and the administration and the guidelines the administration would like to push forward, is the CDC is suggesting that students remain six feet apart if possible. The administration is now looking towards the guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics, suggesting that they only have to be three feet apart if they're wearing masks.

And, Alisyn, you and I know, as parents, and as adults, how difficult it is to keep masks on children and adults, quite frankly, all day.

CAMEROTA: Absolutely. I mean this is going to require new rules and people to be very patient, and we'll just see if it can work.

Bianna, thank you very, very much.


CAMEROTA: President Trump heads to Miami this morning. ICU beds are in very short supply there and his visit will tax the hospitals even further. We explain, next.



BERMAN: This morning, President Trump heads to south Florida, where the coronavirus positivity rate in Miami-Dade County is higher than 33 percent. Forty-eight hospitals in Florida no longer have any ICU beds available. So what is the impact of a presidential visit at a time like this?

Joining me now, CNN law enforcement analyst Jonathan Wackrow. He's a former Secret Service agent. Jonathan, great to see you.


BERMAN: What impact does a visit have on a community? Broadly speaking, what needs to be in place when the president goes?

WACKROW: Listen, it's not just the president going into a location. You're actually moving the entire White House. All the mechanisms that make this nation work have to be mobile and they're -- they're going into a new region. So there's a significant amount of planning that goes into bringing the president into any region under normal conditions.

The Secret Service, working with law enforcement counterparts, White House staff and the military create a very comprehensive security plan that brings forth all of these different resources within a region to build this protective bubble around the president. That's in normal conditions. Now take it when you're going into a crisis. So typically if I'm thinking about Florida and the aftermath of a crisis, this is really a natural disaster. And in those constructs, the president would go in and be the comforter in chief and bring together the federal resources with the -- with the local and state officials and reassure everybody that help is on its way. Here we're seeing something drastically different with this trip today.

BERMAN: And hospitals, I know, have to be on the ready whenever the president comes.

Very quickly, what about the agents themselves, the protective detail? A couple dozen agents from Tulsa and other visits of the president have come down with the virus.

WACKROW: Yes. John, listen, I think there's a couple themes here. First, this virus doesn't discriminate. If you put yourself in a -- a position of exposure, there's a possibility of -- of contracting the virus. We saw that in Tulsa. We've seen it in other locations where the president has had trips.

The other theme here is the Secret Service, unfortunately, can't direct the actions of the president. The president's going to go where -- where he wants to go. So what -- what's happening is now you're putting officers and agents in unnecessary risk positions.

Listen, these agents have been on the ground for the last, you know, five or six days, in the community, working with people to build this security pogrom. Their exposure is predicated upon, you know, time and distance. The amount of time that they're spending with individuals in close proximity in the planning process. So really, you know, the agents that I've talked to, you know, are -- are -- are highlighting that these -- these types of trips are unnecessary. It's putting them in an unnecessary risk position where they can be exposed to this deadly virus.

BERMAN: Jonathan Wackrow, thanks so much for helping us understand this. Great to see you this morning. WACKROW: Great. Thanks a lot, John.

BERMAN: Coronavirus and college football on a collision course. The Big Ten moving to conference play only this fall. But, honestly, will they play at all?

Stay with us.



CAMEROTA: The Big Ten says it plans to only play conference games in all sports, including football, this fall.

Coy Wire has more in the "Bleacher Report."

Hi, Coy.


This news comes just a day after the Ivy League announced that they won't have any sports at all this fall. The Big Ten is the first power five program to put this policy in place. And you get the sense, Alisyn, that it's just the first domino to fall. The conference says that this move will allow for greater flexibility to adjust operations throughout the season and it will limit travel and potential exposure.

This means that there will be no marquee match-ups like Michigan at Washington, Ohio State traveling to Oregon to play the Ducks, or Wisconsin playing Notre Dame at Lambo Field in Green Bay. And all 42 games canceled. Another impact, smaller conference schools, Alisyn, across the country will lose revenue. "USA Today" estimates that mid- American conference teams could lose $10.5 million by not playing Big Ten teams this year.

Alisyn, with college teams canceling games, teams already dropping out of the Major League Soccer tournament there in Orlando, you get the sense that trying to get games back this fall just might not go as planned for fans.

CAMEROTA: I mean just the ripple effect of coronavirus, beyond the deaths, beyond the hospitalizations, just all of these types of lifestyle issues. It's really remarkable.

Coy, thank you very much.

NEW DAY continues right now.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Done a great job testing. We test so many people.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have likely eight to 10 more times more people getting cases every day than can get tested. It's a failure to tell the truth.


DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: When you compare us to other countries, I don't think you can say we're doing great.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: With only weeks before some schools are scheduled to reopen, more confusion.