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Anderson Cooper 360 Degrees
Chaos In GOP After McCarthy Loses Third Speaker Vote; Uncle: Hamlin Is Still Sedated On A Ventilator; Family Of Idaho Quadruple Murder Suspect Emotional During PA Court Hearing. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired January 03, 2023 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Now, the family has updated it to say that some of that money is going to go toward his care, but really, what a remarkable man, what a remarkable player and we're all praying for him.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: All right, Brynn, thank you very much.
And thanks so much to all of you for joining us. "AC360" begins right now.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: And good evening.
Take a look. Only half of that building is functioning normally tonight. The House of Representatives has no Speaker. For the last hundred years, it has taken no more than a single ballot on the first day in session to elect one.
Today, House Republicans who are now in the majority could not muster the votes needed to make their Leader, Kevin McCarthy, the Speaker. Instead, in a test of his capacity for humiliation, he sat there smiling at times as votes were cast three times and the results were read.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Honorable Hakeem Jeffries of the State of New York has received 212.
[CHEERING AND APPLAUSE]
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Honorable Kevin McCarthy of the State of California has received 203. No persons having received a majority of the whole number of votes cast by surname, a Speaker has not been elected.
No person haven't received the majority of the whole number of votes cast by surname, a Speaker has not been elected.
A Speaker has not been elected.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well after the third rejection, Republicans moved to adjourn until noon tomorrow and this could all begin again.
In 1923, it took nine ballots to choose a Speaker. The record is 133 over two months in 1856. No one expects it to go that long this time, but today was still historic and unprecedented in the modern era.
It was also a repudiation of McCarthy's powers of persuasion, limited though they are by his slim majority and rebellious membership.
All that said, he was assuming it wasn't just putting on a brave face, he still seems to have misjudged his support.
In a letter to colleagues over the weekend he signed it Speaker- Designate. The irony being that this was a letter making one concession after another to hardliners to win their votes, which he did not get today.
And adding pathos to the irony, Kevin McCarthy had already moved into the Speaker's office, which is customary for any leader of the incoming majority. What is not customary is for that incoming leader to lose a bid for the speakership and then be obliged to move out, which in fairness has not happened yet.
Let's go first to CNN's Manu Raju, who has had been talking to lawmakers all day. What are you hearing right now?
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, right now, Kevin McCarthy is still in negotiations. I'm told that he is making phone calls to individual members, some of his own allies are reaching out to some of those detractors, and the Republican Conference is planning a meeting for tomorrow morning to discuss their way forward.
They had a meeting this morning, that did not go well. In fact, a lot of those detractors came out of that very tense meeting and said that they were certain to oppose McCarthy and they expected the opposition to grow.
At that meeting, McCarthy essentially browbeat these members, urging them to vote for him because he said he made all sorts of concessions, he earned his position and to become Speaker, and ultimately, they should have moved in his direction.
They did not move in his direction, and the tension has just grown by the day. In talking to a number of McCarthy allies, they are going after those critics, urging them to be part of the team, but those members are not, at the moment, listening to them.
Listen to what these members say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. DAN CRENSHAW (R-TX): They are enemies now. They have made it clear that they prefer a Democrat agenda than a Republican one. They are the true definition of RINOs.
REP. RYAN ZINKE (R-MO): I was sent here to get things done, not be advocate for chaos, and a lot of it is soundbite for fundraising. Let's just be clear, and just call it what it is.
REP. MICHAEL LAWLER (R-NY): I'll be sticking with Kevin whether it's the third ballot, the fifth ballot, the fiftieth ballot or the hundredth ballot.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
RAJU: And that's what Kevin McCarthy says he plans to do. At least, he is signaling to his colleagues that he plans to grind it out one ballot after another no matter how long it takes.
But it is a warning sign for him, Anderson. Republicans who are supporting him, some of them are saying they may not stick with him for that long. That is a real challenge for him going forward.
One of those Congressmen, Ken Buck told me, eventually they need to find another candidate. And another sign for concern of his that Byron Donalds, who is a Republican from Florida was one of those who voted for McCarthy on the first two ballots, but not on the third ballot and that is a real feel of fear among McCarthy allies, that the opposition may only grow.
COOPER: And how are Democrats viewing this?
RAJU: Well, they have not made a decision yet on how to proceed. They do know that at the moment, they are just planning to sit back and just kind of watch this chaos unfold.
This House is paralyzed and cannot move forward until they elect a Speaker. That is the first order of business and as what Hakeem Jeffries, the incoming Democratic leader told reporters this evening, he said: "We're looking for a willing partner to solve problems for the American people not save the Republicans from their own dysfunction."
RAJU: So there has been some talk, perhaps the Republicans and some Democrats could join together and find some sort of consensus candidate. Jeffries says those talks are just simply not happening.
There is also other ways they can try to lower the voting threshold that 218 votes are not required to elect a Speaker, perhaps it is going to be lower than that if some members of their caucus vote present. That is not part of the discussion as well, but we'll see if this continues and continues on, Democrats may be leaned on in some way to help McCarthy, but they're not playing to bail him out at the moment -- Anderson.
COOPER: All right, Manu Raju, appreciate it. Thanks. A long day for you.
Perspective now from Mick Mulvaney, Acting Chief of Staff in the prior administration, former South Carolina Congressman, and a founding member of the House Freedom Caucus.
Congressman Mulvaney, what's your reaction to those three failed ballots for Kevin McCarthy?
MICK MULVANEY, FORMER US REPRESENTATIVE: It's a complete breakdown here tonight, Anderson. There is no question that to have 19 votes against Kevin. It's just -- it is outrageous.
I talked to a bunch of the folks who voted against Kevin. I asked them what their plan was. They don't seem to have one other than to continue to vote against Kevin.
I asked them what they want. They don't seem to be coherent to that. I asked them who they actually support, they don't have any names. I don't know if it's anarchy or chaos, but it is certainly a breakdown in the system here in the United States House of Representatives tonight.
COOPER: A number of them of those who didn't vote for McCarthy have said it's not personal. Oftentimes when people say it's not personal, it is. Do you think it is personal?
MULVANEY: I think it's absolutely personal. In fact, I've listened to them today talk about the things that they don't like, and they're asking for things that Kevin can't give.
They're complaining about things that are not Kevin's fault, and they are sometimes asking for things that Kevin has already agreed to give them. So I absolutely believe it is personal.
Look, I challenged John Boehner that when he tried to be Speaker in 2013. We did that because we felt like he was marginalizing the conservative wing of the party.
Fast forward almost 10 years, and here is, you know, Kevin McCarthy, trying to make Jim Jordan one of the most conservative members of the Freedom Caucus, a Committee Chairman, something we never would have dreamed about with John Boehner being the Speaker of the House.
So it is entirely different than 2013, which was sort of on policy and politics and principles, and this seems to be almost entirely personal. It's unfortunate.
COOPER: Some of the things that McCarthy has agreed to would weaken him as the Speaker. Is it -- I mean, even if he is elected Speaker, has he done himself tremendous damage by agreeing to those things?
MULVANEY: Well, I again, I don't think he has agreed to do it in principle, but I think he agreed to do it in exchange for votes and these folks don't seem to want to vote for him, so I don't know where we stand.
Would Kevin be a weakened Speaker if he wins under the circumstances that he offered under the conditions he offered these folks? Maybe, but it was going to be a weak Speakership anyway, because of the nature of the margin. There is only a five-vote margin on every single piece of legislation.
And that's what I think I don't understand are these folks who are opposing Kevin, is they are going to get their chance to be heard on every single rule vote, on every single piece of legislation, on every single House resolution. Because the margins are so tight, they have leverage almost all the time. Why they're choosing this battle, which I don't think they can win is really beyond him.
COOPER: So it's part of it also -- I mean, if it's personal, is it also about, I mean, frankly, getting attention?
MULVANEY: I think there's some of that, unfortunately. Look, both parties now seem to sort of, you know, elevate people who really like being outrageous, it's a great way to raise money. They like to be on social media, it's a great read -- a great way to sort of drive their numbers and so forth.
So yes, are we sort of both parties electing celebrities or wannabe celebrities or wannabe media personalities instead of lawmakers? I think that's probably -- I think that's probably a fair claim.
You can't go into something like this, where 90 percent of your party has voted for Kevin McCarthy in a closed room and come out and oppose him and for the wrong reasons and really consider yourself a serious lawmaker. I just -- I just don't get it.
COOPER: A reporter for NBC posted on Twitter tonight that he spoke with former President Trump, he declined to say whether he'd stick with McCarthy saying well, we'll see what happens. Would it -- I mean, does it surprise you if your own boss is unwilling to expend capital to come to McCarthy's aid or would that help?
MULVANEY: No, and I think the President probably should be coming to McCarthy's aid simply because the President is already associated with McCarthy, regardless what the President does in the next 24 or 48 hours.
Everybody knows he supported McCarthy up to now. So, if Kevin McCarthy is not the Speaker, yes, Kevin McCarthy loses. There is no question.
I think that conservatives in the House lose because you will end up with somebody further to the left as a Speaker, but the other big loser is Donald Trump, because everybody knows he is tied to Kevin McCarthy.
He wasn't tied to Kevin McCarthy as closely as say he was tied to Herschel Walker, but it is close, and a McCarthy loss equals a Trump loss here in the US House.
COOPER: You were one of the founding members of the Freedom Caucus. You were arguing earlier on CNN, they shouldn't be painted with a broad brush that a majority of Freedom Caucus actually voted for McCarthy.
How do you square the values you think the Caucus represents with the action some members are taking against McCarthy?
MULVANEY: Yes, you know the Freedom Caucus was started Anderson the working title used to be that the reasonable nutjob caucus.
We were the folks who wanted to take the time to think things through if we wanted to vote with leadership, because that was part of a plan, we would; if he wanted to vote against leadership, we would because that was part of the plan.
We tried to position ourselves as the reasonable right-wing extreme of the party. I think that's completely broken down to the extent you saw this today.
Again, this was not a Freedom Caucus opposition to Kevin McCarthy. A majority of the Freedom Caucus, to the extent they published their names was for Kevin McCarthy. But there's a lot of folks in there that I don't think are true to what we made the Freedom Caucus.
But again, I've been gone here from six years and it changes with every Congress. So yes, I think it's a very different building than it was when I left here six years ago.
COOPER: Yes, Congressman Mulvaney, I appreciate your time. Thank you.
MULVANEY: Thanks, Anderson.
COOPER: Joining me now is CNN senior political commentator, former top Obama adviser, David Axelrod; CNN senior political analyst, Nia-Malika Henderson; CNN political commentator and former Pennsylvania Republican Congressman Charlie Dent; former New York Democratic Congressman, Mondaire Jones.
David, is tomorrow's vote going to be much different than today's?
DAVID AXELROD, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Boy, you know, I don't see how, honestly. I don't know what's going on in those rooms other than a lot of pizza and Chick-Fil-A according to reports, but you know, there is such ingrained opposition among that 20 who voted against McCarthy that it's really hard to see after he has given them virtually everything that they asked for, that they're going to turn around overnight.
And the question is, and maybe he will, maybe they will. The question is how long will it go before his allies, some of his allies peel away and say, Kevin, we love you, man, but it's just not there for you.
I thought it was telling by the way that Trump started pulling away a little. He has gone from "My Kevin" to "Maybe Kevin," which reflects where McCarthy is right now.
COOPER: Nia, do you think there is any scenario under which McCarthy bows out?
NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: You know, I think if tomorrow, you start to see some of these moderates peel away, is it five? Is it 10 on successive votes? And folks start to go to him and say, it doesn't look like you've got a path because these 20 or so folks really seem to be dug in, they've done this before to other Speakers. This is what they do, and that there is no way forward for you, I think he wouldn't have any choice but to pull out at that point, because there is just no path.
He has been at this, you know, for many, many years and at this very doggedly for the last two or three months or so, and very much engaging with these hardliners over the last couple of days, and nothing has happened, nothing is moving his way. And so at some point, the writing is going to be on the wall for him.
COOPER: In fact, Congressman Dent, I mean, it is moving the opposite. He started with 19 against and then it ended up being 20 at the end of the day.
CHARLIE DENT, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes, and many of us expected there would be maybe five, maybe a little bit more than that. And I think we're all surprised to see the number go as high as 19, and then 20.
So we're going to go into tomorrow. We'll see what the first vote looks like. Maybe it's still at 20. And I suspect one or two things are going to happen at some point. Either the 19 or 20 are going to cave or McCarthy is going to have to bow out.
I mean, I don't see much of a middle ground here right now. Somebody is going to have to move. And, you know, I'm not betting that those 20 guys are going to move because they're pretty darn stubborn and I think they're relishing their moment in the spotlight right now.
And so I don't know that McCarthy can give them anything that he hasn't already offered them. He'll never be able to satisfy them.
COOPER: Congressman Jones?
MONDAIRE JONES, FORMER US REPRESENTATIVE: I think people have got to stop being surprised. I was baffled by your interview with Mick Mulvaney because he describes, at least at the founding of the Freedom Caucus, as this reasonable, right-wing extreme caucus. I mean, come on.
So eventually, you're going to have enough people who don't believe the Federal government exists, that when you finally empower them through a slight margin like what we are seeing right now in the House of Representatives, you're going to see these kinds of tactics deployed, in this case for deeply personal reasons, I believe, based on what he has conceded to and what they are requesting, which are things that in most instances he can't do.
COOPER: It certainly tells you about, it is just a sign of things to come. I mean, regardless of whatever happens to McCarthy, whoever ends up being the Speaker, it tells you what the next two years are going to be like on the Republican side in the House.
JONES: Absolutely. I don't see how they expect to deal with the debt ceiling, for example, which is a looming consideration, to say nothing of simply organizing Committees.
I mean, the day-to-day functioning of Congress occurs at the Committee level, and if you can't put people on the Appropriations Committee or on the Ethics Committee, which they're trying to gut by the way in the rules package, which is a separate scandal once a Speaker is finally selected, then I just don't see how you can run on anything in 2024 that you've done.
AXELROD: You know, I just want to pick upon the debt ceiling issue. That would be catastrophic if we breached the debt ceiling, but if McCarthy who probably recognizes that at some level makes -- relies on Democratic votes to do it, that undoubtedly would bring in this five vote ability to call his whole Speakership into question, to vacate the Speaker's Chair. This is a rule that he has agreed to.
COOPER: He has agreed to this rule, which wasn't --
AXELROD: Any five could demand a vote to vacate the Speaker's Chair.
It is what drove John Boehner from the Speakership.
DENT: At that time, it was one person who can make the motion, right? Now under the news proposal, it is five. With Pelosi, the Democrats, they took it up to 50. So they're bringing it back down to five.
I mean, again, why would Kevin McCarthy hand the rope to his opponents with which they could hang him? That's really what he is doing. I mean, this is like -- this is incredibly short sighted, I think to make these types of concessions. I mean, I just really --
COOPER: So what is the -- what happens tomorrow? I mean, who is the alternative?
DENT: Well, they don't have an alternative. Frankly, either side right now. But everybody I think is speculating that Steve Scalise is most likely.
COOPER: Mulvaney said he didn't think Scalise could get the votes.
DENT: Well, he might not be able to get the votes, but he'll probably get more votes than McCarthy is getting right now. And by the way, there is no better bomb thrower than Mick Mulvaney. I served with him.
I mean, this is a guy who voted against John Boehner for Speaker. I mean, Mick Mulvaney, Mark Meadows, and Jim Jordan were the guys who wrote the textbook on how to obstruct the majority. And all we're witnessing here today is really a continuation of what we saw since 2011. That's the same thing except it is worse because there is a smaller margin and they are more the wild men.
COOPER: We're going to have more to talk about with the team here in New York. Everyone is going to stick around.
Also tonight, a significant update on the condition of Buffalo Bills' safety, Damar Hamlin who collapsed on the field last night. A detailed new reporting on what he went through last night and is still going through medically right now at the hospital. Plus, we'll get perspective from our own, Dr. Sanjay Gupta. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
COOPER: We are talking tonight about history-making humiliation of Kevin McCarthy in his bid to become the next Speaker of the House. Part of it was watching this, Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz nominating Jim Jordan for Speaker.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MATT GAETZ (R-FL): Mr. Jordan said we must engage in rigorous oversight. Every one of my Republican colleagues knows that the person who can lead that oversight effort who works on it every day, who has the skill and the talent and the will is Jim Jordan. I'm nominating him and I'm voting for him.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Kevin McCarthy was sitting just three seats away.
Back now with David Axelrod, Nia-Malika Henderson, Charlie Dent, and Mondaire Jones.
Charlie, I mean, the fact that the former President is backing away, some have suggested that the former President should do more for McCarthy. How do you see it?
DENT: Well, as a maybe a more of a traditionalist, I believe that, you know, House leadership election is an election among the House members. This should be where the debate is.
The President of the United States and especially former Presidents of the United States should not be involved in that selection process.
You would have never seen either the Bushes or Reagan or Barack Obama or Bill Clinton intervening in a House leadership election. All they can do is make enemies.
I think it's a terrible precedent. Plus, if you're relying on Trump to become the next Speaker, he is going to own you in the next Congress. That's the mistake they're making.
COOPER: I mean, clearly, Kevin McCarthy has allied, had desperately tried to ally himself with Trump. I mean, even after condemning him for the January 6 insurrection, he quickly reversed himself.
DENT: Well, that's --
JONES: To the point of being now referred to the Ethics Committee for his conduct with respect to the January 6 investigation. I don't know what he's got to show for his antics over these past two years.
DENT: But the rub here is, McCarthy's most vulnerable members are in districts where Trump is not popular. So where is McCarthy's loyalty going to be? To the former President who helped them get there or to these more moderate members who need to distance themselves from Trump?
This is really the dilemma that Kevin has got to deal with. Those guys in these marginal districts know that Trump is the Kiss of Death if they were dependent on him.
COOPER: I mean, all of this, what we're witnessing, part of it is the fallout from the Trump administration. I mean, this is a fallout from what's happened in the Republican Party.
AXELROD: A hundred percent and this is a microcosm of the challenge that the Republican Party has faced. They know they need to quit Trump, that if they're going to be successful -- this last Midterm prove this -- they need to distance themselves from Trump, but he still carries a lot of sway within the base of the party and there's great fear about primary elections and in McCarthy's case, there was fear that he could turn members against him in his bid for Speaker.
So this is an ongoing dilemma, and it is obviously coming to a head because Trump is running for President again.
HENDERSON: And I think whatever, if McCarthy makes it, I think his Speakership, he is going to preside over investigations that are very pleasing to Donald Trump, pleasing to the Donald Trump base, investigations into Dr. Fauci, investigations into Hunter Biden. And if you're moderate, you know that that's not going to help you get reelected, that's not going to help the Republican brand or with Independents who turned against Republicans in droves in 2022.
COOPER: And so that, Congressman Jones, I mean, CNN is reporting moderate Republicans are already laying groundwork for kind of a long shot play of potentially teaming up with Democrats in the coming days if those 20 GOP holdouts remained. Would Democrats actually go for a type of concession candidate?
JONES: I think that remains to be seen. I think it would not happen without the blessing of Hakeem Jeffries. And so, you know, that's a calculation that I'm sure is probably incomplete.
I think that in the first instance, people are going to want to see whether they are able to rally around another Republican candidate within the House GOP before thinking that Democratic votes are even necessary. I think it's a bit premature.
COOPER: I mean, it would be hard to see Republicans going for that, and certainly a lot of Democrats.
DENT: I'll tell you what, if I'm Hakeem Jeffries, hey, yes, if I could help deliver a Speaker, what would he get for it? I mean, could he get a power sharing arrangement? Could he control some Committees? Guarantees on certain legislation?
Now it's not probable that this would happen, but if I'm Jeffries, why not be the power broker?
[20:25:06] AXELROD: Can I ask a question though? If you were McCarthy and his
people, just to be really Machiavellian about it, is this not a good story to have out there right now that boy, if you guys don't get on board here, we may see deal cutting back and we could lose the whole thing.
DENT: That's why when Don Bacon floated that idea -- Congressman Don Bacon of Nebraska, he floated the idea of maybe some kind of consensus bipartisan speaker. There is no question that McCarthy loved that out there, because that might force these hardliners back into the fold if we had a deal with a shared arrangement with the Democrats.
But that was clearly -- I'm sure McCarthy loves that conversation that we're having right now.
DENT: Some things that might bring some of those 19 back.
HENDERSON: But I mean, I think it goes again to Kevin McCarthy's failed strategy all along, whether it's floating this, I think it's kind of a cockamamie idea that somehow the Democrats are going to help on some sort of consensus candidate. That has been a bad strategy, I think, going on FOX News and having establishment folks really hammer some of the hardliners and nothing has worked so far. He is just bad at trying to become Speaker.
And the folks who are blocking him have been very good at blocking Speakers and running them out of town.
COOPER: Yes, Nia-Malika Henderson, David Axelrod, Charlie Dent. Thanks so much, Mondaire Jones.
We are going to take a short break from our coverage of the Speaker's race.
Coming up, the latest in the Buffalo Bills' safety, Damar Hamlin who collapsed and suffered cardiac arrest after a brutal hit during Monday Night Football. A live report from Cincinnati and what his family is saying tonight.
Plus, Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Bob Costa joins us as well.
COOPER: Well, more on the speakers race shortly. Right now, we have breaking news on a story that broke on our air last night. The family of Buffalo Bill safety Damar Hamlin spoke with a CNN reporter about his condition. Hamlin, they say, is still unable to breathe on his own. He remains in critical condition. Tonight, Hamlin suffered cardiac arrest after taking a blow to the chest and head area while trying to make a tackle during a play on Monday night football. He got up after the hit, but then almost immediately fell backwards. CPR was performed on the field. He was then taken away by ambulance. In a moment, Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins us to talk about Hamlin's medical condition. Later, Bob Costas is going to join us to talk about the NFL's response last night.
But first, we go to Cincinnati, where CNN's Adrienne Broaddus is breaking the news about Damar Hamlin after speaking with family member. So, what have you learned?
ADRIENNE BROADDUS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: His uncle telling me, Anderson, just south side of the hospital here, that his nephew had to be resuscitated twice. Once on the football field last night and then again when he was transported here to the hospital. As you mentioned, Damar suffered cardiac arrest and within seconds, trainers were at his side and medics performing CPR.
His uncle telling me his nephew sustained damage to his lungs because of the chest compressions. He's saying right now he is flipped over, the way he described it, inside of the hospital on his stomach to relieve some of that pressure from his lungs. Here's more from our conversation.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DORRIAN GLENN, DAMAR HAMLIN'S UNCLE: His heart head went out, so they had to resuscitate him twice. They resuscitated him on the field before they brought him to hospital, and then they resuscitated him a second time when he got to the hospital.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BROADDUS: His uncle saying he and the entire family that has been at Damar's bedside believe in the power of prayer. And their plea for the public tonight is to keep those prayers coming. He said without the medical attention and the staff that is working so hard here, he believes his nephew would not be here with us. But tonight, he's inside of this hospital still in critical condition, sedated and fighting for his life, Anderson.
COOPER: And I assume his family is still with him tonight.
BROADDUS: His family is here. Just moments ago, we met three women who identified themselves as his aunt. They were at what I like to call the get well soon corner, which is just in front of the hospital here. There are balloons and messages of hope and healing. And the family said their nephew is fighting, but they've been here with him, including his mother, who rode in the ambulance with her son last night to the hospital. She was in the field or in the stadium excuse me when her son collapsed.
COOPER: Yes. Adrienne Broaddus, appreciate it. Thank you very much.
More now from the CNN's chief medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta. So, Sanjay, from just a medical standpoint, what's your reaction to what Hamlin's uncle told Adrienne about what happened?
SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, there was two things. I think Anderson really jumped out at me there. First of all, the idea that he had to be resuscitated a second time. We know that he had his heart rhythm restored when he was on the field, which that was good news because you want to do that as quickly as possible.
And it sounds like the medical team was able to do that while he was still in the stadium. By the time it sounds like he got to the hospital, he was unstable again. Electrical rhythm was unstable again and had to be resuscitated again. So that just gives you an idea of just how much damage or impact there has been on his heart overall.
Again, as we talked about last night, Anderson, we don't know the underlying cause here, what is really driving that, and that's an important thing to know, but we don't know that in terms of what that means for him going forward.
The second thing that Adrienne mentioned was that it sounds like he has been placed in what's called the prone position on his chest and on his stomach. You may remember this, Anderson, even talking earlier in the COVID pandemic about patients who are having a particularly hard time oxygenating even on the breathing machine. In order to try and facilitate that. Sometimes they would roll patients onto their stomach to make that easier, which is what it sounds like they've done for him as well. When your heart's not beating well, you start -- fluid starts to back up. People get swollen ankles and stuff. That's a sign of backed up fluid. But that same fluid can also back up into the lungs.
GUPTA: And that can make it very difficult to oxygenate somebody. And that's part of the reason they flip them over. It just speaks to, he's sick, he's critically ill, as we've been hearing, and those are some of the manifestations of that.
COOPER: You talk about the electric rhythm of the heart. Can you just explain how that gets interrupted, what that actually means?
GUPTA: Yes, so, you know, when you think about the heart pumping, it's basically got four chambers, there's electrical activity that's coordinating the pumping of those chambers. And ultimately, you're forcing blood from the heart into the aorta, and that goes throughout the body. When the heart rhythm is abnormal, they call it fibrillation, instead of having normal pumping like this, it starts to fibrillate like this. And that's basically a very ineffective, inefficient amount of pumping. You're not really pumping blood through the body at all.
That's the impact of an abnormal rhythm. In this case, something known as ventricular fibrillation. When you apply electricity, defibrillate, use a defibrillator, you can basically try and interrupt that and hopefully get a normal rhythm back to the heart. That's what it sounds like happened to him on the field. Again, as we just learned from Adrienne, that happened again at the hospital.
COOPER: So, would somebody who has had that happen, would they have to be on some breathing ventilator?
GUPTA: I think not necessarily. If someone immediately returns back to a normal rhythm and they wake up, they have normal consciousness, then perhaps not. But in this case, it sounds like he's still having a significant amount of cardiac dysfunction. His heart's simply not pumping enough blood. So, there's two options here. You want to try and increase the function of the heart, and you can give medicines to try and do that, which I'm sure they're doing.
The other thing you can do, and probably it's happening, is you can decrease the demand of the body for that oxygenated blood. So, you want to improve the amount of circulation, but in the interim, you can also decrease the demand by sedating somebody, by keeping them on a breathing machine. Sometimes they'll even use cooling agents, you know, hypothermia, it's called, to basically almost put the body in more of a hibernation like state, so it's not demanding as much oxygenated blood.
So that's part of the reason that he'd be on a breathing machine as well. And again, because the fluid is likely had been backing up into his body and including his lungs, it would be hard for him to breathe on his own, and the breathing machine can help facilitate that.
COOPER: Again, we don't know what caused this. Obviously, there had just been he was involved in a tackle, there had been a collision. Even though they're wearing pads, that a collision, a blunt force trauma, it can affect the heart in that way. It can interrupt the electrical flow.
GUPTA: Yes, it can't. We typically hear about this more in sports like baseball, where you have a fast-moving, you know, projectile baseball or lacrosse, or sports like even cricket, and then it hits the chest, and hits the chest at the right spot at the right time, causing that. To be honest, as we talked about last night, hadn't really heard about that happening in football as much.
It's a little bit different. But it was there some underlying problem that he had that had not yet been diagnosed. I mean, there have been stories for decades of athletes who've had sudden cardiac arrest, and sometimes you may never really know why there's not an obvious underlying cause that really declares itself.
So, you know, we'll see in his case, and we'll see when the doctors do finally give some updates on him, if there is an underlying obvious cause here. But it could be something like that. It could be something that he has congenital abnormality that had not yet been diagnosed. And this is the first time he really was made aware of it.
COOPER: Yes. Well, we wish him and his family the best. Sanjay, appreciate it. Thank you.
Coming up, we'll discuss the NFL's response to Damar Hamlin's injury with legendary broadcaster and CNN contributor, Bob Costas. We'll be right back.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [20:42:59]
COOPER: Again, we have the breaking news on the Buffalo Bill safety Damar Hamlin, his uncle telling CNN that the 24-year-old had to be resuscitated twice last night. He remains both, first on the field and then at the hospital. He remains hospital tonight in critical condition, is still unable to breathe on his own after a bloated the head and chest area led to cardiac arrest on Monday night Football.
Meantime, the NFL today said the game between the Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals will not be resumed this week. No plan as of yet about when or if the game will be played. Consequential decision for both the team and the league
I'm joined now by legendary broadcaster and CNN contributor Bob Costas to discuss the NFL's response. Bob, first, I'm just wondering your reaction when you saw what happened to Damar Hamlin last night.
BOB COSTAS, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, it's very rare. In fact, it is not more common in football as Sanjay said in the last segment than it is in so called projectile sports like baseball or hockey or lacrosse. So you can pin a lot of things on football, brain trauma, spinal cord injuries. This particular incident is not more likely to occur in a football game than in any other sporting event, at least not by percentage. It's rare overall, and it is not more common in football than in other competitive sports.
When I saw it happen, it was clear to me that this was not the same thing as someone wobbling to their feet after being concussed, like happened with Tua earlier this season on Miami Dolphins quarterback. It was clear to me that it was something different. And by the reaction of the players on both teams, you could see that it was significant.
I think the league made the right decision in not continuing the game. No one, including the fans, was in a frame of mind to have this game continue. And although they haven't made announcement yet, you alluded to it as you introduced me, Anderson, what they might do about this game. I don't think anyone wants to see these two teams return to the scene in Cincinnati of this traumatic event, especially when we don't know what the future holds for Damar Hamlin at this point. The most likely outcome here is that next week the Bills play the Patriots as scheduled, the Bengals play the Ravens, and Kansas City, the other team with a shot at the number one seed in the AFC, plays the Raiders. And they never make up this particular game.
So, the Bengals, the Bills each wind up playing 16 games. The Chiefs and other teams play 17. And they figure winning percentage not wins and losses in total, but winning percentage, and whichever team has the highest winning percentage gets the number one seed. That's significant because seven teams in each conference make the playoffs, but only the team with the best record gets a first round by, they don't have to play in the first round, and as long as they stay alive in the playoffs, they would be at home. So, it makes a tremendous difference to get that number one seed, and the Bengals, the Bills and the Chiefs are all in play for it.
COSTAS: But it doesn't seem like there's any other option but to just eliminate this game, because if they went back for another week while everybody else sat idle, that would have a domino effect and all the playoffs would be moved back a week. They'd compress the two-week window that they have between the last conference championship games and the Super Bowl. The most likely outcome, it seems, is that this game just never gets replayed.
COSTAS: Obviously, it only played barely part of the first quarter, so it doesn't count.
COOPER: When, you know, when it happened last night, I mean as you said, it was different than what we have seen in other incidents on the football field where he was able to get up. He seemed to get up normally, and then it was I don't know how, a second or two later that he just collapsed, which it just was so sickening to actually see. Had you ever seen anything like it, I mean whether it's on football or somewhere else?
COSTAS: No. When I was a very young reporter in St. Louis, the Cardinals, who now play in Arizona, but they were the St. Louis Football Cardinals then, they had a tight end named JB Kane (ph), and during a training camp scrimmage, he had some cardiac episode, but as I recall, not from contact. And he died on the field or shortly thereafter being taken off the field. But I've never seen anything quite like this. The whole nation, or at least the portion of the nation that a football fan saw it because it's the only game. It's Monday Night Football.
Something we might point out here, Anderson, is this. This could have happened in theory, rare as it is in any football game. Think of high school teams, almost none of which have the degree of sophisticated personnel and equipment that can be brought to bear at an NFL game with an ambulance on hand, and in a city not in some rural area, perhaps, where you can get him to the best possible medical care quickly. By every report they administered CPR in a very competent way. They had a defibrillator ready. They did everything they could. And still we don't know the outcome for Mr. Hamlin. If this happened in a high school game, very likely the player dies on the field.
COOPER: Yes. Bob Costas, appreciate you joining us tonight. Thank you.
Idaho quadruple murder suspect Bryan Kohberger appeared in court today as new video surfaced of one of his encounters with police weeks before his arrest. We have details on that next.
COOPER: Idaho's quadruple murder suspect will be headed back to the state to face his charges. Bryan Kohberger is his name. He didn't fight extradition in a Pennsylvania courtroom earlier. And he's a criminology grad student. He's accused of stabbing four university of Idaho students to death. He appeared to have mouthed I love you at one point to his family. Weeks before he was arrested, he was stopped twice by police on a long drive cross country with his father. They didn't know at the time he was a suspect. They didn't know yet to be on the lookout for a white Hyundai Elantra. We now have body cam footage of one of those traffic stops on December 15th in Indiana.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) please take out your license and registration. I stopped you when you were driving by me there, you were a little too close to the back of that (INAUDIBLE) back of his trailer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That was more than a month after the murders. It was hard to hear. The officer told the suspect he was pulled over for driving too close to a truck.
CNN's Jean Casarez is outside the courthouse where Kohberger appeared today joins us now. So, what is the latest night following his appearance in court?
JEAN CASAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, he signed the papers, the extradition papers in court, and so then the judge declared that he would be extradited to Idaho. But that is the last we've heard. No one will confirm if he is still in Pennsylvania, if he is in flight at all, if he has remained here for the next few days. No one is confirming that. So we'll just have to wait because there are safety concerns, and they have publicly told us on the record that they just don't want that release at this point because of all of those potential issues.
COOPER: You were sitting right behind his family in the courtroom, I understand. What was their reaction?
CASAREZ: Very emotional. Stunned. They walked in. His mother was just distraught. She was sitting there. And when he walked in, he looked at his family, but he looked directly at his father, and he acknowledged him seriously, but his head was acknowledging him. He sat with his public defender. The chief public defender turned around a second time, beeline for his father, looked at him. And then the third time, he looked and turned around. He scanned his family. Just sort of had a very faint smile.
But when the proceeding started, the precedent judge really started to question him. Is this voluntary? Have you been forced? Have you been coerced? She really wanted to make sure it was freely and voluntarily, because he has rights in Pennsylvania, and he can assert those. But he said it was, and she said, then you will be returned to Idaho to face homicide charges for murder. His mother then just fell into the shoulder of her daughter. You couldn't hear her, but she was crying so hard. The court brings over Kleenex because at this point, the whole family is very emotional and the whole family, they're taking the Kleenex.
But after that, then he signed the extradition papers and then it was almost official. But one thing that the defense attorney wanted to put on the record, which was very interesting, that the chief public defender of a county in Idaho had filed under seal a motion in Idaho that his fourth, fifth, and 6th amendment should be preserved. He should not be interrogated. He should not be searched. There should not be seizure to protect him. And he was making the court aware of this, especially for that journey from the commonwealth of Pennsylvania back to Idaho.
COOPER: Jean Casarez, appreciate it. Thank you.
We started tonight's broadcast with the latest on all the drummer and Kevin McCarthy's three failed votes for the speakership. And since we left that topic, there have been a slew of new developments. That's next.