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NEW DAY

Trump Tweets Picture Wearing Mask; Ambush Attack on Judge's Family; Federal Agents to be sent to Chicago; Florida Teachers Union Sues Governor over Mandate; Heat Grips the Northeast. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired July 21, 2020 - 06:30   ET

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


[06:30:00]

SEUNG MIN KIM, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: And see helpful those -- that information from the president will be.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: I have to say, one of the things that's most interesting is the way that the Republicans on Capitol Hill are treating the president, almost deploying and begging for him to lead here and trying to give him positive reinforcement the way you would to, you know, a dog, or the way you would to your baby when you're trying to feed him. You're not going to like this, Alisyn, but -- but let me put up Lindsey Graham's tweet here after the president put out that picture of himself with the mask yesterday. Lindsey Graham put out a tweet that said, couldn't agree more! Well done, Mr. President! Well, you know what that made me think of? That made me think of the viral video from Corey Lewandowski --

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Oh, God.

BERMAN: Basically praising a kid for learning how to potty train.

Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COREY LEWANDOWSKI, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN MANAGER: I hear that you're starting to use the big boy toilet. So, congratulations, and you're doing a great job with your poopies. Congratulations.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAMEROTA: Oh, my God.

BERMAN: That's what it felt like.

CAMEROTA: Oh, my God.

BERMAN: Honest to God, that's what it feels like. Republicans saying, good job, Mr. President, you're wearing a mask! Good job sitting on the toilet. KIM: It also reminded me, when the president did actually wear a mask

a couple of weeks ago at Walter Reed, you had so many members of his campaign staff and his official staff tweeting praise of how presidential he looked, saying, that's my president. That was their way of positively reinforcing the president wearing that mask, which we know he had been so hesitant to do.

Republican senators are also trying that same tactic. They've seen for the last three and a half years that arguing with him head on just does not work, whether it's in public or in private. That positive reinforcement is something that does get across to this president.

And on masks, that's the one area where Senate Republicans have really split with the president on. You know, we had the president saying, you know, I don't have any issues against masks, but it's an issue of personal freedom. He would not commit to a national mask mandate. He had kind of mocked reporters who wear masks, asking them if they're trying to be politically correct.

But Mitch McConnell, both in Kentucky and here in D.C., is out there pounding the drum, wearing his Washington Nationals mask, urging the public to cover their face. Senate Republicans are promoting mask- wearing on Instagram and Twitter. So you really do see that divide just on basic public health guidance between Republicans on Capitol Hill and the White House.

BERMAN: They're going to need to find more Scooby Snacks because the president was at that fundraiser last night in Washington not wearing that mask. And Lindsey Graham, by the way, there not wearing a mask either.

Seung Min Kim, great having you on. Great to see you. Thanks so much for being with us.

KIM: Thanks for having me.

BERMAN: So, we have new details about the man police say carried out a deadly ambush on the family of a federal judge. Did his views on feminism play a role in this crime? That's next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[06:36:48]

CAMEROTA: This morning we're getting new details about the attorney suspected of shooting and killing the son of Federal Judge Esther Salas and injuring her husband. On his website, the attorney describes himself as an antifeminist who defended men's rights.

CNN's Brynn Gingras is live in North Brunswick, New Jersey, with more.

What have you learned, Brynn?

BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Alisyn, good morning.

Yes, Den Hollander had a written history about, you know, his hatred, really, for women, and also his actions show that as well. Once he sued Columbia University for their women's studies. He also had some written history about Judge Salas herself. But this morning, it is still unclear what drove him to come to this house and attack the judge's family.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

GINGRAS (voice over): New details in the attack on a New Jersey federal judge's family. The FBI identifying Roy Den Hollander as the primary suspect in the shooting of Judge Esther Salas' husband and son in North Brunswick, New Jersey, Sunday.

MAYOR FRANCIS WOMACK (D), NORTH BRUNSWICK, NEW JERSEY: It's a stomach punch, not just for me, but for everybody who lives in this town. It's a horrible and terrible thing, and it could not have happened to a nicer family.

GINGRAS: Den Hollander was found dead Monday, more than two hours away in Rockland, New York, from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to two law enforcement sources.

Sunday night, a man approached Salas' home, appearing to be dressed in a FedEx uniform, and then shot Salas' 20-year-old son in the heart after he opened the door, killing him. Authorities found a FedEx package addressed to the judge in a vehicle associated with Den Hollander, a source told CNN.

WENFENG ZHANG, NEIGHBOR: Gunshots were very, very loud. We just opened our door and we hear some gunshots. But I thought that some kids were playing, something, you know, because usually it was very nice and quiet area.

GINGRAS: The judge's husband, Defense Attorney Mark Anderl, was also shot and remains in stable condition after undergoing a second surgery Monday, his law partner said.

Salas was reportedly in the basement at the time of the attack and was unharmed, according to "The New York Times."

MARION COSTANZA, NEIGHBOR: The whole family, very, very devoted. They're wonderful people. You never heard anything. You knock on anybody's door, go through the whole neighborhood, you never -- or go into the courthouse, I've never heard a negative thing about Esther Salas or Mark Anderl.

GINGRAS: Den Hollander did have personal issues with Judge Salas, who was appointed by President Obama in 2010 and was the first Latina judge appointed to the Federal District Court in New Jersey.

On his website, Den Hollander disparaged the judge in racist and sexist terms, claiming, female judges of Latin American descent were, quote, driven by an inferiority complex.

Den Hollander argued one case in front of Judge Salas, representing a woman and her daughter who sought to register for the military's selective service. The military does not allow women to register. Den Hollander argued that this was unconstitutional and Salas did agree with some of his arguments, allowing the lawsuit to continue.

Den Hollander was a self-described anti-feminist and men's rights activist who brought controversial lawsuits to court, arguing ladies' night specials at clubs and bars were discriminatory against men.

[06:40:09]

The Supreme Court declined to take up that suit.

DEN HOLLANDER, (2007): I'm now trying to turn the tables of equality on the Femi-Nazis (ph) who have changed this country.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GINGRAS: And we just learned that federal officials found the photo and the name of New York State Judge -- Chief Judge Janet DiFiore in the car of Den Hollander. That all according to the court's public information officer. It's unclear, though, if she was also an intended target of Den Hollander.

As far as these victims, though, Salas' family, Mark Anderl, her husband, he is in stable condition. But, John, he's going to need another surgery today stemming from this attack, according to his law partnership, who's also the godfather of the couple's only child, Daniel, who died in this attack. And one thing about Daniel, John, was headed to his junior year at Catholic University and he wanted to be a lawyer, just like his parents.

BERMAN: Yes, such tragedy for this family, such a loss. And more threads coming in on the investigation by the minute, including that development just moments ago.

Brynn, I know you'll stay on this. Please keep us posted.

Also developing this morning, CNN has learned that President Trump is preparing to send federal agents to Chicago, he says, in response to a spike in crime. It comes as the mayors of Portland and five other cities are calling on federal forces to leave and for an investigation of the president's actions in regard to these cities.

CNN's Josh Campbell live in Portland, Oregon, with the very latest.

Josh.

JOSH CAMPBELL, CNN SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Yes, good morning to you, John.

Another night of protests here in the city of Portland. Just moments ago, where I'm standing, we saw protesters and federal agents squaring off. There was a line of federal officers that came from this courthouse behind me, pushing protesters back, deploying smoke grenades, these crowd dispersants, again, to push them back. This is part of this pattern that we've seen, that some of the officers, again, will just set up a perimeter here and then they'll quickly retreat back into the building. Now, these protests have been going on for over 50 days. And one thing

that I have to tell you is that a pattern that we have noticed, as we look at how this is being described in Washington, is that this caustic nature, saying, you know, the president and some of his officials at the Department of Homeland Security saying that there's widespread bedlam and chaos in the city of Portland is simply not the case. I mean the epicenter of these protests is largely relegated to this one city block behind me, this federal building, which has served as the focal point for protesters who want to see these officials -- these federal officers out of the city, this infusion.

Now, to be sure, there have been acts of violence. There have been people trying to break into this building, defacing. There was at least one agent that was attacked. And officers are obviously dealing with that. But this description that there's widespread chaos, simply not the case.

Nevertheless, President Trump saying that he's not only going to send federal forces here, he wants to see them in other cities as well, saying that particularly those run by Democrats, which, again, raises questions of whether this is politics. One of those cities' mayors, Lori Lightfoot, in the city of Chicago, speaking out with some pretty harsh words.

Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR LORI LIGHTFOOT (D), CHICAGO: Our democracy is at stake. And I'll be darned if I'm going to let anybody, even if their name is Mr. President, bring those kind of troops to our city and try to take off our residents. That's not going to happen in Chicago. And if they try it, I'm going to use every tool at my disposal to stop them.

We're not going to have tyranny in the city of Chicago. It's just not going to happen.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAMPBELL: Now, very critical there, obviously, of some of this caustic language coming out of the White House.

Now, Mayor Lightfoot is one of six mayors that are calling on federal resources to leave their cities. They are not taking this lightly, these accusations that these cities are filled with widespread chaos and violence. Again, speaking out there.

But, again, this is this standoff, John and Alisyn, that we continue to see, where you have protesters here that want these federal resources out, you have local officials here in the city of Portland that want these officials out.

Nevertheless, the president and the Department of Homeland Security saying that they're not going anywhere.

Alisyn. CAMEROTA: We're going to be talking to the New York City commissioner of police about this very thing.

So, Josh, thank you very much for setting all of that up.

The largest teachers union in Florida is now suing to stop a mandate that would force them back into classrooms in person. We're going to talk to the union's president about this, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[06:48:26]

CAMEROTA: The largest teachers union in Florida is suing the state over its executive order mandating that schools reopen next month with in-person instruction. In the lawsuit, the union says the state is unconstitutionally forcing millions of students and teachers into unsafe schools.

Joining us now is Fedrick Ingram, he's the president of the Florida Education Association and a teacher in Miami-Dade County.

Mr. Ingram, thank you very much for being here.

You're suing the governor over his mandate to open schools. You say it's dangerous. But I'm sure that you've heard his logic, or at least the commissioner of education's logic, which is that it's also harmful to students in terms of psychologically, socially, you know, emotionally, and to their parents financially for them to be out of school.

Here's what the commissioner has put out in a statement. There is a need to reopen schools fully to ensure the quality and continuity of the educational process, the comprehensive well-being of students and families and a return to Florida hitting its full economic stride.

So, that's their logic.

What's your response?

FEDRICK INGRAM, PRESIDENT, FLORIDA EDUCATION ASSOCIATION: Sure. And thank you very much for having me this morning.

Listen, I'm a high school band director, and nobody wants to be in front of kids in classrooms and back in our public schools more than our teachers. There are over 200,000 teachers that get giddy with zeal, start preparing lessons and start doing professional development to get back in their classes.

But the backdrop of that is this, we have 360,000-plus cases in the state of Florida of Covid-19. We have 5,000-plus deaths.

[06:50:01]

The startling statistic that you all need to know is that we have 23,000 children that have been tested positive for Covid-19 here in the state of Florida with a 13.4 percent positivity rate. These are not circumstances in which we have business as usual. We cannot be guided by politics, nor can we be guided by the economy. We must keep kids alive, we must keep them healthy and we must keep them safe.

The Florida constitution demands us to do so. And we believe that this executive order to have brick-and-mortar schools does not give us a constitutional situation where we can go back to school safely.

CAMEROTA: Mr. Ingram, that is a really stunning statistic that, you're right, I didn't know, 23,000 children, you say, in Florida have tested positive for Covid-19. That is remarkable.

Your governor, as you know, believes that even if they test positive, they don't pose a risk. So let me play you what he says.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): I look particularly at those elementary school kids. And the science on that is just overwhelming. Yes, they're at almost zero risk, but even more than that, transmission from an elementary school to an adult is extremely rare.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAMEROTA: Obviously, there are new studies that show that he's wrong about that. There was a huge study out of South Korea that show that children ages 10 to 19 spread the virus as much as adults do, but under 10, less so.

So what do you say to him saying that it's zero risk?

INGRAM: So, it's unfortunate that we have a governor that is playing politics with children's lives, with teachers' lives, with cafeteria workers and bus drivers and secretaries, and people who really want to get back into our public schools.

Listen, there is a risk. There's a risk that we don't know. There's a risk that he's willing to take. And one life lost -- one life lost is one too many. For a child who goes back to a multigenerational home, who lives with their grandmother, who lives with an aunt or who lives with a mom with underlying issues, who may have a sibling who is sick and they pass on or transmit this disease one way or another.

And it's too early for us to find that out, and it's too early for Florida to be the petri dish for America. We cannot experiment with our public schools. We can be reckless with bars. We can be reckless with beaches. We can be reckless with restaurants. But we simply cannot be reckless with our public schools. That's not fair to our students and our teachers who want to get back to work.

CAMEROTA: As I understand it, here's what you're looking for, adequate protective gear, reduced class sizes, hand sanitizing stations, increased staff and clinic capabilities, Plexiglas shields where necessary.

Is the state working on those things? And if they accomplish those things, you're saying you'll go back?

INGRAM: So, we have an open-door policy with the governor. We have not heard from the governor. I would extend to him another opportunity for us to sit down to the table and let's get this right. Let's come out hand in hand, arm in arm together. Let's develop a plan that is comprehensive with all of those issues, including reasonable accommodations for those teachers that don't go back or won't go back. It should not be a cause for them to lose their jobs.

What are we going to do when a teacher gets sick or ill or -- and -- are we going to bring in a substitute teacher to put themselves at risk? Are we going to quarantine a classroom? Are we going to quarantine a school? We don't have any guidelines in place, any recommendations in place. The governor and the commissioner of education just said, hey, go it alone, find out what it is, and we'll approve it, if we want to. And if we don't approve it, then we will potentially take money from your school districts. That's unfair to our courageous superintendents, our school board members, our principals, our teacher leaders and unions who want to get this right for our kids.

So we've got to do better here in the state of Florida. We are the epicenter of this crisis right now and we need to fully recognize that and be guided by the science.

CAMEROTA: Fedrick Ingram, great to talk to you this morning. We really appreciate getting your perspective.

INGRAM: Thank you. Thank you very much for having me.

CAMEROTA: Gun violence is on the rise in New York City. What is behind the surge and how can it be stopped? We're going to talk to the NYPD police commissioner ahead on NEW DAY.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[06:58:22]

BERMAN: So, this morning, it is so freaking hot. Can Chad Myers make it stop?

CNN meteorologist Chad Myers here with the forecast.

Hey, Chad.

CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: I can get you on a train to someplace that's colder, but that's about it, John. What you see is what you're going to get here for the next couple days. Heat indexes today are going to be around 105 in spots.

This weather is brought to you by the Shark VacMop, a complete, all- in-one disposable pad.

So, really, the heat warnings today are farther south, into the Carolinas, the mid-Atlantic, Hampton Roads, Richmond and the like. This is where the areas are going to be exceeding that level. Now, we put out warnings only when it exceeds a certain amount from

normal. And that's where it's going to be the hottest. Raleigh, all the way down even toward Elizabeth City, Richmond, Petersburg. We're going to see some rain showers come in later on today, helping a little bit.

Your relief, John, comes in tomorrow, but it will also come in with a potential for severe weather. The front is going to try to get to you. It's that heat and humidity, and you can't keep the storms away. Something is going to bubble in the afternoon when you get temperatures like this.

A couple of degrees cooler, but I can't tell the difference between 90 and 88, and I'm a meteorologist, so I don't think anybody else can either.

BERMAN: All right, Chad, appreciate it. Great to have you here. Thanks so much.

NEW DAY continues right now.

MYERS: You bet.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hospitals in Florida are reeling from the pandemic, as the state continuously reports more than 10,000 new cases per day.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is no question that we're having a surge right now. It really is all hands on deck. This is serious.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You have to just shut down for now.

[07:00:01]

I think that that is our only way out.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What would happen if 100 percent mask use in public areas?