Return to Transcripts main page
Interview With Harvard Radcliffe Institute Dean Tomiko Brown-Nagin; Interview With U.S. Ambassador To NATO Julianne Smith; Interview With European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde; Interview With "Parallel Mothers" Actress Penelope Cruz. Aired 2-3p ET
Aired March 25, 2022 - 14:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Hello, everyone, and welcome to AMANPOUR.
Here's what's coming up.
CHRISTINE LAGARDE, PRESIDENT, EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK: But it's going to be a lot worse for those people who simply will not have the food available to
put on the table.
AMANPOUR (voice-over): Russia's war in Ukraine shocks a global economy just clawing back from COVID. I speak to the president of the European Central
Bank, Christine Lagarde.
JULIANNE SMITH, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO NATO: Let me be clear. The focus is on this war in Ukraine and making it stop.
AMANPOUR: America's ambassador to NATO, Julianne Smith, tells me that time is of the essence for getting weapons to Ukraine.
TOMIKO BROWN-NAGIN, DEAN, HARVARD RADCLIFFE INSTITUTE: She talks about being a child of parents who grew up under Jim Crow, and I found that part
AMANPOUR: Harvard Law Professor Tomiko Brown-Nagin joins Michel Martin with insight and reflections on the confirmation hearing of Supreme Court
justice nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson.
PENELOPE CRUZ, ACTRESS: When I had my son, I decided, OK, to slow down. My priority is raising my children.
AMANPOUR: Superstar Spanish best actress nominee Penelope Cruz talks film and family ahead of this weekend's Oscars.
AMANPOUR: Welcome to the program, everyone. I'm Christiane Amanpour in London.
President Joe Biden has ended this week of high-stakes unity and diplomacy near the Ukrainian border to signal continued allied resolve in this battle
against Russian aggression. In Poland, the front-line NATO nation, the American leader met and thanked members of the 82nd Airborne Division. He
sat with them and bonded over pizza.
Biden also met with the Polish president. And, before flying home, he will see refugees and deliver a major address.
Meanwhile, over in Moscow, President Putin, suffering severe setbacks on the battlefield and increasingly isolated, made this bizarre comparison,
that Russia is being canceled just like "Harry Potter" author J.K. Rowling.
The U.S. and Europe are keeping the pressure on Putin. Before leaving for Poland, Biden and his counterpart of the European Commission, Ursula von
der Leyen, announced a joint task force to when Europe of its dependence on Russian oil and gas.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: First, we are coming together to reduce your dependence on Russian energy. Putin has issued Russia's energy resources to coerce and manipulate
its neighbors. That's how he's used it. He's used the profits to drive his war machine.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Now, Christine Lagarde is president of the European Central Bank and she's former managing director of the International Monetary Fund.
She says the West's draconian sanctions are clipping the wings of Russia's Central Bank, and that Putin's attempt to get energy payments in rubles
indicates the sanctions are really biting. In an exclusive interview, she warns also the cost to the European and global economy are rising.
AMANPOUR: Christine Lagarde, welcome back to the program.
LAGARDE: Thank you for having me, Christiane.
AMANPOUR: So, a huge economic challenge now because of this war, and mostly because of the rise in energy prices because of Europe's dependence on
What do you make of President Biden and the European Commission president, Ursula von der Leyen, talking today about creating a new joint task force
to reduce dependence on Russian energy? How will that affect the economy.
LAGARDE: That rapprochement between the United States and Europe on the occasion of the Ukraine terrible war initiated by Russia is a blessing.
I think it is incredibly important that the West -- let's call it that way, for want of a better word -- is actually united, is joining forces, is
together on a defense front, on an energy front, and in its absolute condemnation of what is happening in Ukraine at the moment. So this is
really good news.
And I'm very pleased that President Biden decided to come over for these meetings.
AMANPOUR: On the energy front, because it is driving your pain and the pain that all of you central bankers have to deal with on behalf of citizens all
over the world, how long do you think, realistically, do you foresee, predict energy independence from Russia?
And what countries do you look at as stepping into to plug that gap?
LAGARDE: Energy is a critically important factor in relation to prices.
Our job as central bankers is to maintain price stability, is to watch inflation, as to make sure that it does not get de-anchored in terms of
expectations. So, energy, which plays such a critical part at the moment, needs our full attention.
Some countries in Europe are a 100 percent, dependent. Not many. Some are 40 percent dependent. Some are 20 percent dependent on Russian supply of
oil or gas or coal. The overall on average is 22 percent. But there is real diversity, if you look at Bulgaria, 100 percent, Germany, depending on
whether you talk oil or gas, but roughly 40 percent, less than -- a little less than that, Italy a bit less, France and Spain very little.
So real diversity, but dependence on Russia is critical not to crack. And I think that we need not only to be united. We need to accelerate the move
towards a green energy mix, which had been initiated, but which will be further accelerated. And we need to rely on friends and allies.
I think that the alliance between the United States and Europe is important. I think the reaching out to countries like Algeria, great gas
producer, to Qatar, huge gas producer as well, to various other Middle East producers, is also going to be in the cards because we want to sever the
tie with Russian supply, if only to control prices and to make sure that we are not dependent.
AMANPOUR: You want to sever ties.
Can I ask you about the outlook, the global story as you see it? Because, clearly, a month ago before this invasion, there were great hopes that the
global economy -- and let's just talk about the European economy, specifically, because that's what you do -- was on the way to growth out of
the COVID disaster, the COVID -- I guess, was it a recession, or certainly a crisis.
Describe where you were and where you are now.
LAGARDE: Well, we were on the cusp of the most spectacular recovery after the most brutal economic shock that we had seen in the century.
Jobs were up. Growth was up. Incomes were our. Inflation was up a little bit as well. And we were getting ready to normalize monetary policy. So, it
all looked really good, almost too good to be true.
And then the war broke out. So, those forces that were already out there, high energy prices, because the demand was strong and there was constrained
supply, various bottlenecks that industrial -- industrialists experienced, all that was amplified, aggravated. And to add to it, uncertainty clearly
grew out of the war and the element that we have no clue about, which is, what is going to happen?
How long will it take? When will people sit at the table and start to negotiate peace, rather than fight and kill each other? So uncertainty is
what has compounded everything else, which is leading us to keeping all options on the table, continuing the path that we had initiated, but
certainly with more humility, more flexibility and with certainty that we want to constantly revisit our projections and determine our monetary
AMANPOUR: Christine Lagarde, one economic experts said that this war could be an even bigger shock to the global economy than the pandemic.
I don't know whether you agree with that. But, particularly, what does it mean for ordinary citizens, while you make your calculations and try to do
things to mitigate this? What about ordinary citizens? We have heard the French foreign minister and others now worry about such massive food price
Apparently, the French president is talking about handing out food vouchers to French citizens. Over in much poorer countries, let's say, in North
Africa and around, there's worry that there could be skyrocketing basic supplies like bread and stuff, which could lead to instability, and even
famine, or at least severe hunger.
LAGARDE: You're right, Christiane.
Because Russia and Ukraine are both huge producers of wheat, in particular, and represent together about 30 percent of exports of wheat around the
world, the war that is going on at the moment, particularly at the time of the planting of seeds is going to create a massive disruption on markets.
It has begun already. If you look at the price of wheat, it has gone up by about 40 percent. But there are countries that depend heavily on import of
wheat. Look at a country like Egypt, for instance, 100 million people, and they depend heavily on the import of wheat.
And there are other countries in -- particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, that also are going to be affected significantly by the situation, which is
why, the longer it lasts, the more harmful it will be and the more damage is going to cause.
It will be harmful for all those who have to pay an extra tax income squeeze because of energy prices, but it's going to be a lot worse for
those people who simply will not have the food available to put on the table.
So, we need to find solutions that are going to work for all of us. And the best one would be for belligerents to sit at the table and to negotiate,
because, at the end of the day, this will happen anyway. So, the sooner it does, the less people die, the less suffering there is in Ukraine, and the
better for the whole economy.
AMANPOUR: So do you feel moved, would you suggest advise or actually do any further stimulus for the European economy?
LAGARDE: Fiscal remedies are needed. There is so much that monetary policy can do, and monetary policy will take its course, will normalize, and the
conditional fashion that we have identified will be data-dependent.
But fiscal is going to have to play a role. Now, hopefully, fiscal authorities will target, will tailor their fiscal support property and will
really focus on those people most exposed, most vulnerable to the shock that we are -- that we are suffering.
So I know that, for the moment, there are some sort of pretty wide measures that are adopted, and that was probably the first response. But if this
situation lasts, there will have to be some more targeting, more tailoring of the fiscal support that will be extended.
AMANPOUR: So, some of the big CEOs in the economic and financial field, for instance, the asset manager Larry Fink of BlackRock has written that: "The
Russian invasion of Ukraine has put an end to globalization that we have experienced over the last three decades."
And we have seen Jamie Dimon of Morgan Stanley call for a Marshall Plan to resolve Europe and the world's energy crisis and energy problems and
dependence on Russia. I spoke, as I said, to the -- I spoke to the president of the European Council, Charles Michel, just this week in
Brussels, and he talked about sanctions that had to be sensible sanctions, intelligent ones.
Let me just play for you what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHARLES MICHEL, PRESIDENT, EUROPEAN COUNCIL: We are much more dependent in Europe, in comparison with the situation in the United States.
It's why we must be intelligent. The goal is to target Russia,. The goal is to be painful against Russia. The goal is not to be painful for ourselves.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: So, from your perspective, are the sanctions right now intelligent ones? And do you think that, for instance, this really puts an
end to globalization, as Larry Fink has said?
LAGARDE: I think Larry is probably right to say that, at this point in time, globalization, as we know, it, will not continue. It will take a
I hope we're not going back to, let's do business behind our borders and have nothing to do with each other, because a good, sensible globalization,
with respect, with level playing field, with good trade rules, is something that can be extremely helpful.
But it is going to be rethought through. And the sort of outsourcing, offshoring without any consideration for friends or foes as long as there
was business to be had, I think that will probably be revisited. And it's probably for the better.
On the other issue of sanctions, I would say that some of the sanctions have been extremely efficient. I would think of the freezing of assets held
by the national Central Bank of Russia has proven to be extremely efficient.
Other sanctions will certainly be elaborated further, but I would add that it's not the people of Russia who have to be sanctioned. It's the regime of
Russia. It's the decision-makers of Russia who have to be really targeted at the most.
AMANPOUR: Finally, is there anything that I have missed, from your perspective, as the expert, on predictions, on growth, on how much more
pain is going to be inflicted on the global economies and therefore people, or do you see an end to this and of -- get back to the success story, which
was happening just a month ago before the war?
LAGARDE: There will be an end to this. How soon is a big question mark? What form will it take? Huge question mark. We will certainly see a very
weakened Russia as a result of what has happened.
And one thing that I'd like to add, Christiane, is that, in a very humble way, we're trying to help our Ukrainian friends and colleagues. And we are
working on a scheme that hopefully will help Ukrainian refugees who are crossing the borders with plastic bag for banknotes to convert those
hryvnia into euros.
We have a system in place. It's almost turnkey, can operate on a Pan- European basis. I hope it works. I hope it's picked up by the member states and by the commission, so another system is in place. We will be happy to
also help with it.
But it's so sad to see these millions of people coming across with -- mothers with children, grown parents with their pets, and not have the
ability to spend a bit of the money that they came across with.
AMANPOUR: You know what? That's a great way to end, very compassionate.
ECB President Christine Lagarde, thank you so much for joining us.
AMANPOUR: And let's hope that works.
Now, the world watched in horror the bombing of the Mariupol theater, which had been a shelter. That happened some 10 days ago. And now new video has
emerged on social media showing people covered in dust making their escape on that terrible day.
Officials in Mariupol now say that, based on eyewitness reports, they believe about 600 people survived the attack. Tragically, though, they
think 300 people were killed.
When I spoke to the U.S. ambassador to NATO, Julianne Smith, at the Brussels summit, she told me this human suffering is what keeps NATO
unified and resolved to support Ukraine.
AMANPOUR: Ambassador Smith, welcome back to the program.
SMITH: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: An amazing summit, emergency summit.
And President Biden says that NATO has never been and never demonstrated its unity and its strength as much as it as it is today. Do you agree? And
how did that go down in the summit?
SMITH: Well, the summit was extraordinary. '
I'm glad that we were able to lay out an in person summit to bring all the leaders of the alliance together in this moment. It was important for a
couple of reasons. I mean, obviously, the leaders wanted to get together and send a strong signal back to Moscow about alliances unity and resolve.
But it was also a message to our own publics about what NATO is doing in this moment. And, most importantly, it was a signal to Ukraine about our
ongoing determination to continue to support the people of Ukraine.
AMANPOUR: The president of Ukraine did address it, the summit, your summit. I mean, it was behind closed doors.
We understand, because I think he put it out on his Facebook, that he didn't do his usual ask for a no-fly zone and the like. But he did ask for
other things. And he also said, we have shown that in one month of resisting the third biggest army in the world, we are NATO-ready.
How did you take what he was saying?
SMITH: I thought it was a really interesting argument. He's right, of course.
And we have known that for a long time, that the Ukrainian military forces are superb. And, in fact, as a partner to NATO, we have seen their
performance. We have been able to exercise and train together for quite some time. We have all been impressed with Ukrainian forces.
But that changed dramatically in terms of being even more impressed, obviously, since Russia went into Ukraine. Their fighting spirit, their
capability, their determination, it's been remarkable and really something to watch.
And in terms of what President Zelenskyy actually asked for, this is really part of an ongoing conversation that we have been having with Ukraine for
many, many weeks now. And that is that they come to the alliance and tell us what more they need, in terms of air defense capabilities or anything
they believe they need to defend themselves.
So this is an ongoing conversation. It was important for him to continue to relay those ideas. And we will continue to take those suggestions and asks
and match them with allied nations.
AMANPOUR: Do you feel a sense of having to rush to actually get all the defensive weapons that they require in a timely manner? And are you
confident that these weapons that are going in are doing so in time, in order to be able to keep staving off the Russian advances?
SMITH: There's no doubt that time is of the essence. And we want to make sure that any country that comes forward and pledges military assistance is
actually going to deliver it in short order. And the alliance has been working to make sure that's the case.
In terms of the timing of deliverables, all I can actually comment on is the United States, where we have taken a look at the deliverable -- like,
the timelines of how capabilities are moving into Ukraine. And from what we can tell so far, those capabilities that the U.S. is providing, over $2
billion of support in lethal assistance so far, they actually are making their way into Ukraine and getting into the hands of the Ukrainian forces.
AMANPOUR: So, here we are at the end of the week. President Biden is visiting Poland. Obviously, Poland plays a massive strategic and
humanitarian part in this crisis.
I believe the president announced a whole load of humanitarian aid for Ukrainian refugees. What can you tell us about Poland and how they're doing
on the refugee front?
SMITH: Well, this situation, what Poland is going through, is really putting a strain on this country. But what has been so impressive is to
watch the Polish people welcome Ukrainian refugees into their homes with open arms.
Poland is not the only country under strain, feeling this right there on the border. There are others. The Baltic states, Romania, many other
countries on NATO's eastern flank are stepping up, but feeling this, feeling these refugees coming in. And it is difficult to absorb millions of
Ukrainians each and every day.
So we have been incredibly impressed. It's why the president wanted to go to Poland to send a signal to the Polish people, but also the Ukrainians
that are arriving there each and every week.
AMANPOUR: Do you think 100,000 that the U.S. says it's going to take in is enough?
SMITH: It's a great start. Let's start there.
I'm very excited to see the president make this announcement. I think it's the right thing to be doing right now. And we will take it day by day.
AMANPOUR: You think there should be more?
SMITH: I have no idea. We will have to assess it in real time.
AMANPOUR: Because the rest of Europe, much less able than you, is taking millions.
SMITH: True. There are millions of Ukrainians moving across the border into many countries in Europe.
But I think what's great right now is that the alliance has come together to express a willingness to help all of those refugees.
AMANPOUR: One more question about Poland, since the president is there. He will be meeting with the president of Poland as well.
We know that the government is led by a very conservative and somewhat, it's described, as an illiberal democrat. It's not necessarily the most
forward leaning in terms of democracy and rule of law. It is challenging the E.U. It has been fined by the E.U. for all sorts of reasons.
We're in a different situation right now. But is that part of the president's calculation as well, because, of course, he started his
administration with wanting to have a democracy summit, and really trying to put democracy ahead of autocracy.
SMITH: Well, here's the great thing about the NATO alliance.
First and foremost, we can focus on the crisis at hand. And we are. And the emergency summit that took place this week is a strong symbol of that. But
what's also great is that the allies can come together on a regular basis and debate and have differences over either specific NATO policies or
what's happening in our national capitals.
And we do that every week here at NATO. So I think this is an alliance that's healthy. It's open to these types of debates. We will, on occasion,
raise challenges to other NATO allies when we believe we have issues to discuss. But, right now, let me be clear. The focus is on this war in
Ukraine and making it stop.
AMANPOUR: Part of that is economic, obviously, with the sanctions. There were some new sanctions announced. But there also appears to be -- and
maybe you can -- confirm cracks in the resolve amongst Europeans for sanctions, particularly energy ones, particularly the Netherlands and
SMITH: Well, every ally that comes to the table, whether it's through the E.U.-U.S. relationship to talk about sanctions or here at NATO
headquarters, we all bring different perspectives, history, culture to the table.
And so, of course, there are differences. There have been differences from day one about how we approach this conflict and what steps were each
willing to take. But, again, back to your original message, the president was right when he said, this is an incredible moment for the alliance.
The level of unity that you're seeing stemming from Brussels across the Atlantic is really something to behold. And it's, I think, a strong signal
back to Russia that their attempts to divide us are, in essence, failing.
So I feel very good about where alliance unity is right now.
AMANPOUR: Putin apparently appears to be trying to troll you all. He sent out some directive that there would be no more energy transactions unless
you all paid in rubles. That's obviously to help him, given the sanctions and the restriction to dollars and the rest.
Is that even a starter for you?
SMITH: I don't know if that's on the table. It's hard to imagine. We don't focus on those types of issues here at NATO H.Q.
But, again, I think what this tells us is that Moscow is really feeling this moment, really feeling the pressure that the transatlantic partners
are applying on Moscow. And I think he understands fundamentally that his forces are not performing as they anticipated. He's not achieving his
objectives, either in Ukraine or in regards to the transatlantic partners.
So you hear these statements that he's making, but, to me, they feel a bit desperate, to be honest.
AMANPOUR: A bit desperate for everybody would be the use of WMD.
President Biden has said that intelligence shows that, maybe the more desperate they get on the battlefield, the more they will potentially lash
out with chemical or biological weapons.
I spoke to the Kremlin spokesman, close confidant of President Putin, who would not rule out the use of a tactical nuclear weapon. How are you
factoring that in? And how is that playing into your decisions about how you move forward with this particular crisis in trying to help Ukraine?
SMITH: So our strategy before Russia went into Ukraine was really to prepare for all contingencies. So we were simultaneously trying to prepare
for some sort of de-escalation and urging the Russians to take the off- ramp, which sadly, Putin did not.
But we were preparing simultaneously to reinforce NATO's eastern flank. And we had the plans in place to do that the minute Russia went into Ukraine,
and that's why you saw the speed with which we were able to respond.
Similarly, now we're doing -- preparing for alternative scenarios. The alliance is sitting down and thinking about, what would it need to do or be
prepared to do in the wake of one of these darker scenarios, the use of chemical weapons, as he has used in the past, or the use of tactical
nuclear weapons, which is horrifying to even imagine?
But, at this point, what's happening in this alliance is a lot of very important work to think through the steps that we would need to take. And
part of what you heard this week at the NATO summit was a focus by the alliance on CBRN measures in -- chemical and biological, radiological
weapons -- what NATO forces could do to support NATO allies or Ukraine in the wake of that type of attack.
AMANPOUR: So I hate to use red lines for, obviously -- for obvious reasons, but the president also said that if there was any perception of fact of
this kind of use, that there will be heavy consequences for Russia.
What is your line in the sand?
SMITH: Well, it's hard to get into hypotheticals. But I think, again, that comes back to what we're doing. And that's why this meeting in Brussels is
so important this week, because the leaders needed to come together at 30 and start talking through some of these scenarios and think through, what
does the word -- do the words serious consequences actually mean?
And those are the types of consequences or conversations that are ongoing behind closed doors.
AMANPOUR: These are very difficult times.
I wonder if you would just reflect on Madeleine Albright, who died this week, and obviously was a bit of a mentor and an example to you, given your
experience in the Foreign Service and the State Department?
SMITH: Well, it's so funny. I think of her so often when I'm here at NATO, everything that she spent her life on, fighting for democracy.
She was really, for me, such a symbol of everything that the transatlantic relationship represents. She taught me so much. She was a personal mentor
of mine. Really, my heart aches. And she will be missed.
The bright spot is that she spent so much of her career mentoring and training the next generation, particularly women, but also men, of national
security experts, and we all count our lucky stars that we had a chance to spend time with her. She will definitely be missed.
AMANPOUR: Ambassador Julianne Smith, thank you very much indeed.
SMITH: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: Albright was a trailblazer.
And we turn to another one now, to the U.S. Supreme Court confirmation hearing for Ketanji Brown Jackson, who has kept her composure in the face
of what even some conservative critics have called meritless questioning.
Our next guest is Tomiko Brown-Nagin, an award-winning legal historian and dean of the Harvard Radcliffe Institute. Her latest book, "Civil Rights
Queen, "recognizes the path paved by one of Brown's idols, Constance Baker Motley.
And she joins Michel Martin to discuss then and now.
MICHEL MARTIN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Thanks, Christiane.
Dean Tomiko Brown-Nagin, thank you so much for joining us.
BROWN-NAGIN: Happy to be with you.
MARTIN: You're a dean of a graduate division at Harvard University. You're a professor of law and a professor of history. So I'm just wondering -- I'm
guessing that, in that capacity, you interact with a lot of students.
Do you have a sense of what this nomination means to them, particularly young women interested in careers in the law?
BROWN-NAGIN: Every Supreme Court nomination process, the hearings are always appointment TV for law students and for students more broadly who
are interested in law, and never more so than with these hearings.
Judge Jackson is inspiring. As she herself noted, she has been receiving lots of letters from young girls who are looking to her and having their
sense of what they can do in the world expanded. And I just that's just great.
It is a teaching moment for this country.
The very fact of this woman, who is visibly diverse, an African-American woman sitting there at the table, and answering questions from these
Senators, only one of whom is African-American, was just tremendous. It is a testament to progress in this country. Although, other aspects of the
hearing were testaments to how far we still have to go.
MARTIN: You're a legal historian. And I want to just read a little bit from a tribute to Justice Thurgood Marshall, who's the first African-American to
serve on the Supreme Court. This is from Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who was the first woman to serve on the Supreme Court.
And she talked about listening Justice Marshall talk eloquently to the media about the social stigmas and lost opportunities uttered by African-
American children in state-imposed segregated schools. My awareness of race-based disparities deepened. I did not, could not know it then. But the
man who would, as a lawyer and jurist, captivate the nation would also as a colleague and friend profoundly influence me.
To what qualities, do you feel, Judge Brown Jackson will bring to the court that could be potentially reformative for the court, and perhaps, perhaps
for the justice system themselves?
BROWN-NAGIN: I think her greatest asset lies in her experience with the criminal legal system, both as the niece of an individual who was
incarcerated. As a lawyer for criminal defendants. As a U.S. District Court Judge where, in that capacity, she has seen every type of American. That is
the beauty of the federal judicial system -- the trial court, which I had the opportunity to clerk on.
It's just an amazing place. And in that role, she would have seen everyone, and she will have had deep and personal experiences with them that, I
think, are vital to informing the conversations that are had among the justices about the various criminal law issues that arise. And there are
quite a few.
And it's particularly important in this moment of what we're calling, racial reckoning, for there to be a justice who has those experiences. I
also think it's important, Michel, that she grew up in Miami which is, of course, a gateway to Latin-America. We've never had a Supreme Court Justice
who had that kind of variety and diversity in her racial experience. She talks about being a child of parents who grew up under Jim Crow. And I
found that part so moving. We share that history.
And so, she's one generation removed from Thurgood Marshall's experience. And I have every sense that she will make a tremendous contribution to the
type of conversations that are had at the Supreme Court, and in many ways, raise the level.
MARTIN: You wrote for slate in an article about the fact that critics have seized on her two-year stint as a public defender, to portray her as a pawn
of the imagined radical left. What do you make of that? She would be the first public defendant to sit on the high court. What do you make of the
fact that at least in a run up to these hearings, this is the very thing that critics, sort of, pounced on her about?
BROWN-NAGIN: It's exceedingly curious, Michel. And perhaps suggests that even those who tend to portray themselves as patriotic and as lovers of the
constitution, may not truly understand what it means. The Sixth Amendment confers a right to counsel. It's part of the bill of rights. It
extraordinarily impart -- extraordinarily important part of our constitutional system.
The Supreme Court itself, held many years ago, that indigent criminal defendants are entitled to have counsel appointed when they can't afford it
themselves. And that's because the entire judicial system depends on when the government charges a person with a crime, that individual having the
right and the ability to effectively respond. The integrity of our legal system depends on public defenders participating in it.
MARTIN: What do you make of the confirmation process overall? I mean, it took -- I mean, I don't know if you would use this word. Just some of the
questions seemed outright bizarre. I mean, clearly some of them were hostile. This is a Senator Ted Cruz questioning her about the influence of
critical race theory on children. I'll just play that.
SEN. TED CRUZ, R-TX: There are portions of this book, that I find, really quite remarkable. One portion of the book says, babies are taught to be
racist or anti-racist. There is no neutrality. Another portion of the book, they recommend the babies confess when being racist. Now, this is a book
that is taught at Georgetown Day School to students in pre-K through second grade, so four through seven years old. Do you agree with this book that is
being taught with kids, that babies are racist?
KETANJI BROWN JACKSON, SUPREME COURT NOMINEE: Senator, I do not believe that any child should be made to feel as though they are racist or though
they are not valued, or though they are less than, that they are victims, that they are oppressors. I don't believe in any of that.
MARTIN: I don't know what -- I'm just -- what do you make of it?
BROWN-NAGIN: I thought the hearings were disappointing. And largely, a missed opportunity to talk about the law. The wide range of subject areas
that might come before Judge Jackson or that she should be conversant in as a nominee to the Supreme Court.
It devolved into, basically, pure politics with Judge Jackson being asked any number of policy questions that she shouldn't have had to answer
including things like, whether there should be more or fewer police officers. And questions about average sentences for murderers. A lot of
foregrounding of issues of crime. The whole foray into critical race theory, racist babies, and, of course, the fixation on child pornography.
Now, let me say this, Michel. The Senators were certainly within their rights to ask about Judge Jackson's sentences. Including because she has a
background in sentencing policy, having served on the U.S. sentencing commission. And yet, it did become clear that there was an agenda to just
focus on child pornography. And of course, there is a wider -- a background to this where there are groups that evidently are fringe groups that are
focused on this issue.
And so, it really was, to a large extent -- a circumstance where the Senators were -- some of the Senators, I should say, were using the hearing
as an opportunity to appeal to their constituencies. To draw distinctions between themselves and the Democratic Party. And Judge Jackson was just
along for the ride. In many times, the Senators wouldn't even let her speak. They kept interrupting her. And so, it was clear that they really
didn't want the answers. They just wanted to focus on their agendas. And it was sad and disappointing.
MARTIN: And so, let's go back into history a bit. You know, in his speech at the White House after accepting President Biden's nomination, Judge
Brown Jackson expressed gratitude from Constance Baker Motley, the first woman to serve as a federal judge, of whom she called an inspiration. And
deemed -- in a remarkable timing, you just published a biography about Judge Motley's life. I'm just wondering why you took her on, and tell us a
little bit about her.
BROWN-NAGIN: As I said in the introduction to the book, Michel. I wanted to write the story of her life. First of all because she's fascinating. She
had a tremendous impact in three different phases of a career. First, as a civil rights lawyer for 20 years with the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, working
alongside Thurgood Marshall. Then as New York politician. And finally, as the first black woman appointed to the federal judiciary.
And I think that we don't know -- many people don't know as much as they should about Motley because the way in which history, like society
generally, is gendered. So, if the figures who are considered worthy of our historical memory tend to be men, and that is true even in the civil rights
And I thought that, it's a kind of historical malpractice not to know about Constance Baker Motley. And I was happy to spend so much time writing this
book about her life and legacy. Including because she's so relevant still, in many of the issues that she played a role in, as a lawyer and a judge,
are still relevant to our time.
MARTIN: You noted in the book about how often there was an attempt. But first, she was an object of fascination by, you know, people would come to
court just to stare at her, basically, because she was such a novelty, especially in those early days when she's arguing these -- she's taking
these, you know, very difficult civil rights cases in often hostile environments. Often hostile Southern Courts. And then, of course, again her
advocacy came up again when she was nominated to the bench. Do you see parallels to the current moment even though the circumstances seem very
BROWN-NAGIN: I do see, as I mentioned, progress. After all, it's because in part of Constance Baker Motley and Thurgood Marshall that Judge Jackson was
able to attend integrated schools and to become a nominee, who has such imminent qualifications that this hasn't been a focus of discussion.
At the same time, I certainly see parallels in the way that some have sought to use what is Judge Jackson's greatest asset, her practice
background, against her in the very same way that Constance Baker Motley's practice background and civil rights, including, on behalf of criminal
defendants was used against her. There were those who said she should not be appointed to the federal judiciary because she had spent a career
representing plaintiffs in civil rights cases. That, somehow, she couldn't be fair because of that. Which, of course, was absurd coming from many who
believed in and advocated segregation.
And so, there are parallels. And yet, what I will choose to focus on is what Judge Jackson said, which is that, she is standing on the shoulders of
Judge Motley. And I'm so glad that we have finally reached this moment in our history. And I hope that there are many more who are inspired as a
result of our having reached this moment in American history.
MARTIN: Before I let you go. I just want to play another clip from the confirmation hearings. So, this is where the -- Senator Cory Booker of New
Jersey, he's the only African-American on the Judiciary Committee at this moment. Offered words of reassurance and support. And it was quite an
emotional moment, I think, for many people who observed. And here it is.
SEN. CORY BOOKER (D-NJ): And so, you faced insult here that were shocking to me. Well, actually, not shocking. But you are here because of that kind
of love. And nobody is taking this away from me. So, you got five more folk to go through. Five more of us. And then you can sit back and let us have
all the debates.
So, I'm going to tell you, it's going to be a well-charted Senate floor, because it's not going to stop. They're going to accuse you of this and
that, heck, in honor of your person who shares your birthday, you might be called a communist. But don't worry, my sister. Don't worry. God has got
you. And how do I know that? Because you're here. And I know what it's taken for you to sit in that seat.
MARTIN: What do you draw from that?
BROWN-NAGIN: Well, I have mixed feelings about it, Michel. Senator Booker clearly admires Judge Jackson and went on to say about how she had earned
the spot and no one could steal her joy. And I wish that we were at a point where he wouldn't have had to say that. It's clear that she's qualified.
It's clear that she's earned this position.
She's at the very top of the legal profession among judges who might have been nominated, and that is true, regardless of race or gender. And so, it
saddened me that we had to, once again, say to the world that she's worthy. I think he literally said, she's worthy. And it brought her to tears. And I
think those tears were both of joy, but also just exasperation after so many days of being wrongly attacked.
And so, it was with mixed feelings that I watched that moment. And as I said, it was disappointing, saddened. But also, I'm excited that it looks
like she will, in fact, be confirmed to the Supreme Court.
MARTIN: Dean Tomiko Brown-Nagin, thank you so much for joining us.
BROWN-NAGIN: Thank you for having me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: And finally, this Sunday, international superstar Penelope Cruz finds out if she wins another academy award, this time for best actress.
She's nominated for her performance in "Parallel Mothers". It's a story of the bond between two accidental mothers, written and directed by the
celebrated Spanish director, Pedro Almodovar.
It's set in the years of a Franco's fascist dictatorship. The film is the latest in their long-standing collaboration. And we spoke a few weeks ago
about that relationship, her globe-trotting career, and how marriage and motherhood have changed the way she works. So, here is the second part of
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Penelope Cruz, welcome to the program.
PENELOPE CRUZ, ACTRESS, "PARALLEL MOTHERS": Thank you so much. It's an honor to be talking to you.
AMANPOUR: This film is remarkable and it's so full of passion and angst and emotions. And I just wondered, I think your director, Pedro Almodovar, said
that it was one of the most difficult roles that you've ever played, either with him or with anybody else. Would you say that?
CRUZ: I agree with him, but I don't say that I'm complaining. I feel very honored and very lucky that he can trust me with this kind of material. He
has done that all the times with me. We've done seven movies together. And I'm very lucky that he can imagine myself doing things that I -- maybe I
cannot even see myself doing out of fear or -- but it's constantly an amazing challenge.
And he's the director why I decided to become an actress when I was very young and -- well, not to become an actress, to try to become an actress,
because of his inspiration. So, it is -- I feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have this long relationship with him, professionally and as,
like, one more member of my family.
AMANPOUR: I just want to read what he said. It's a good relationship because we are very close friends. We love each other. We see each other
very often, but it's a relationship based in work because she's a hard worker. It's a lovely sentiment. And I've heard you say similar things,
including, how much you trust him and how much you love him. And you even wrote once that you told him that, you know, I will look after you when you
get old, and how much that impacted him.
CRUZ: Yes. And actually, I told him that 25 years ago, and he just answered me last month in a video that was shown at MoMA, at the event a couple
months ago. And it's so peculiar, his personality. He wouldn't answer me in person. And the answer is beyond, oh, yes, take care of me. He's, you know,
he's healthy. He's young. He's -- for me, he's young. He's strong. But it's a way of saying, yes, you are family, for me.
I don't know, it's a very, very special relationship. But it's true that when we are on set, the dynamic changes a lot. And we don't plan it. But
I'm terrified. Like, the first few days or maybe every single day of the process of every month. I'm really kind of scared, intimidated, even if I -
- he knows all my secrets, and I know, I guess, a lot of his.
And it's a good fear, because I know he's honest. And he would tell me the truth. And if I do a take that he's not happy with, he will tell me, and he
can be strong about it. And this is my safety net, because he will be very demanding. And I know that's how I can give a good performance.
When I have somebody in front of me that thinks that I can give him something good, and he's not going to be OK with something that is just
more or less OK. He would be honest, and I like that. I don't know if I could say he's tough. Sometimes he could -- he can be tough, but I love --
I love the motivation that I find in that.
And knowing that after trying one take, I will look at his face, and I will see a true reaction, good or bad or whatever. It makes me -- he gives me
the freedom to try everything. To not be afraid of making mistakes. To try something ridiculous. To -- it's because of him. Because of this true
friendship, and also honestly -- honesty. But we don't behave as friends on the set.
AMANPOUR: Just -- I just want to know whether you agree with this -- what Pedro said, the best of Penelope in the American market is yet to come. Do
you agree with that?
CRUZ: I don't know. Because I'm -- I hope I have a lot to give because I have a lot to learn. And I never feel like I've gotten a place where, oh, I
have things under control, or I have learned everything I was supposed to. But I don't see it as a separate market there and here. I've done movies,
also, in France and Italy, and they are very important to me. Just feel -- to feel blessed, to be able to work in all these different territories. And
just keep learning and trying to give 100 percent in every opportunity that comes to me. And trying to select well which is sometimes really hard.
CRUZ: Like, when to say no to something. Especially, now since I have children, I don't work like I worked before. I used to make four movies per
year. And when I had my son, I decided, OK, to slow down. My priority is raising my children. And then I tried to work whatever I can do during the
winter where we were living in Spain, or if I have to do something out, it has to be the summer, and then we will go together. And I -- for me, I
don't want to miss anything in that process. It's the most important thing that I will ever do.
AMANPOUR: That's amazing to hear. Look, everybody knows that your husband is also a major movie star, Javier Bardem. And that the Spanish, this year,
did not submit your film as their official entry to the Oscars. Instead, they submitted your husband's film "The Good Boss". What do you feel about
that? Is it as good?
CRUZ: I -- it is very good. And, of course, I was celebrating for them, and they celebrate whatever happens to us. I mean, they -- because Fernando
Leon is the director, and we're very close. And we worked together, actually, in a movie, Javier and I, about Pablo Escobar (INAUDIBLE). And we
survived that one. Imagine playing those characters and being a couple.
CRUZ: It's kind of scary. But it's important, you know, to celebrate everything good that happens. Not just in us which is easy because we are a
couple. And know each other for 30 years. So, we did our first movie together. And, you know, I was like -- not kids, but almost. So, everything
-- I don't think is good -- like, as a couple, if you have the same job, it's not like about -- like, always be talking about the work. It's not
that, but, of course, to be able to read the other person's script or to help with that decision or to look at a scene together and look for ideas,
And when good things happen to the other person, in this case, to that team because I know all of them, of course, I will be very happy for them. The
same way I know they're happy for us with all the things that are happening with the movie. And I think all this is really, really great for Spanish
cinema. You know, there are a lot of strong Spanish films this year.
AMANPOUR: It is said that, as a director, Pedro Almodovar just by being, you know, an openly gay director in Spain, everything he did, he never had
to openly confront, you know, the historical injustices there, that he never did. And this is what he said recently, 20 years ago, my revenge
against Franco was not to even recognize his existence, his memory; to make my films as if he had never existed. Today, I think it fitting that we
don't forget that period, and remember that it wasn't so long ago. He, in fact, said that, you know, around 2006.
CRUZ: Yes. I did an interview with him today, and he was joking about that and making that point very clear about how the movie, at the end, I think
the audience can find a peace -- that feeling of peace that the character of Janis can find and the people that are there with her, honoring her
And it represents thousands of people that could be in that situation, or millions of people. Because this is like, every place in the world could,
may be, look back in their history and find some similarities. And he was saying, I wanted to make very clear that this was not any kind of revenge,
any kind of message. That it was just like the beautiful line that says at the end of the movie. About just looking back to learn how to take care of
each other in this world in a better way.
And that's what I also love so much about my character. And that's why it's not about the debate at the end of the movie. I don't think it has been
about what political side. But about way about human rights.
CRUZ: And when you know him very well, and you spend time with him, you know, like that's the essence of his message, and the root of his message.
Because he's not only somebody very bright, but also a very good person. And he is. And you just cannot fake that. You are or you're not or -- I
AMANPOUR: Penelope Cruz, thank you so much for joining me.
CRUZ: Thank you. I love talking to you. Thank you so much, really.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: She is so gorgeous in every way. Just saying. That's it for now. Goodbye from London.