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Interview with Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA); Interview with U.S. House January 6th Select Committee Member Representative Adam Kinzinger (R-IL); Interview with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg; Interview with New York Times National Political Reporter Astead Herndon. Aired 1-2p ET
Aired November 09, 2022 - 13:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. And welcome to "Amanpour" live from Kyiv. Here's what's coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): We would really like for the support, especially the amount of support will stay the
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: In an exclusive joint interview with Ukraine's first couple, President Zelenskyy tells me that he hopes U.S. support stays strong after
the midterms. Then.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LT. GOV. JOHN FETTERMAN, (D) PENNSYLVANIA SENATE CANDIDATE: I will be the next U.S. senator from Pennsylvania.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: So, the polls were slightly off again. No red wave. I am joined by Democratic Senator, Tim Kaine, and Republican Congressman, Adam
Kinzinger. Also, ahead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JENS STOLTENBERG, NATO SECRETARY GENERAL: The gains -- the victories that the Ukrainians are achieving on the battlefield shows that our support is
making a difference.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, joins me. We discuss whether the alliance remains steadfast behind Ukraine.
Plus, "New York Times" reporter, Astead Herndon talks to Hari Sreenivasan about the political forces shaping this midterm result.
Welcome to the program, everyone. I am Christiane Amanpour in Kyiv.
In the battle to liberate Ukrainian territory, all eyes tonight are on statements from the Russian defense minister who has publicly ordered the
withdrawal of forces from Kherson's West Bank. This, as Ukrainian forces advance towards that strategic city from two directions. And Kherson has
been the only regional capital taken by Russia since February's invasion.
And I just sat down for an exclusive joint interview with President Zelenskyy and the first lady. And I asked about the status of the Ukrainian
counter-offensive against Russians occupying Kherson.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): I will try to answer in a way that does not give you an answer, to be honest. Because
these planned military actions, they are discussed in a small circle. But then they're executed in silence. And I really want to have an unpleasant
surprise for the enemy and not something that they are prepared for. So, I would like to apologize.
But at any rate, our people and your public need to know that we are working on some very serious steps with a positive outcome for the citizens
of Ukraine. And all of those communities that support peace in Ukraine.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: While the president warns not to take a Russian public statement at face value about withdrawing from Kherson. Saying it could just be a
regroup. Our conversation also takes place as the results from America's midterms begin pouring in. A vote that's being watched here and around the
world. President Zelenskyy told me that he hopes vital U.S. support continues.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ZELENSKYY (through translator): We would really like for the support, especially the amount of support to stay the same and to have this joint
support from the U.S. society and above all, U.S. taxpayers. Because at the end of the day, this is not the money of the government but the money of
Secondly, we are grateful for the bipartisan support. We would really like to have this bipartisan support remain after the elections. Because, yes,
there have has been these mixed messages that were in the U.S. mass media, particularly from the Republican side.
And for or us, it is very important to preserve this level of support. Because the U.S. support sent a very significant powerful signal and it has
an impact also on the amount of support coming from the E.U. countries and some of the countries outside of E.U. as well. So, whenever the United
States support us financially, then Europe joins this support as well.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: And of course, much more of our exclusive interview with the first couple tomorrow.
But for now, let us focus on those pivotal midterms. The results are still coming in. But once again, polls have been proved somewhat wrong. A
Republican red wave has not materialized. With Democrats doing much better than expected. And we talked to both sides tonight. First, I'm joined now
by the Democratic senator from Virginia, Tim Kaine. He is at the Capital rotunda.
And welcome back to our program, Senator Kaine.
SEN. TIM KAINE (D-VA): Thank you, Christiane.
AMANPOUR: First, can I just get you on the record about what President Zelenskyy said. Hoping that he still has the vital bipartisan Americans
support no matter which way Congress goes.
KAINE: I'm glad to send the message to President Zelenskyy, and all who are watching this, that the U.S. resolve and support for Ukraine against
the illegal Russian invasion will remain strong in Congress, in both houses in a bipartisan way. And the Biden administration is also going to continue
standing strong with global partners for Ukraine.
AMANPOUR: OK. So, that's be very welcome to everybody here where I am in Kyiv and around this country. But let me ask you then, politically, where
you are, what happened? You know better than I that the polls were not predicting that the Democrats would do, you know, better than it turned
KAINE: Christiane, it was interesting that the race has turned out the way than I thought they would. I thought we would hold on to the Senate
majority. Narrowly lose the House majority. Our Virginia race has worked out the way that I thought they would. And I think -- there was sort of
three issues at stake that maybe made some people look a little bit differently.
First, the issues were the economy and autonomy and democracy. On the economy, voters who said that the economy was the top issue, many interpret
that to mean that they were going to vote for Republicans. But that wasn't necessarily the case. People understand there is tough economic issues and
they could look at a Democratic Party that was delivering an infrastructure bill, a CHIPS manufacturing bill, 10 million new jobs, hundreds of
thousands of manufacturing jobs.
Yes, there are some tough signs. Inflation is real and people talk about it. But if you are an economy voter, that didn't mean that you are voting
Republicans. A lot of people like what the Democrats are doing and want us to do more.
On the autonomy side, look, the Dobbs decision that undermined a half a century, really a full century of Supreme Court precedent, granting women
autonomy to make decisions about their personal life, that was a huge factor. As you could see in individual races. And also, in state referenda
all over the United States, women and men and standing up and saying, wait a minute. The long arm of criminal law should not be used against women in
making their own health care decisions.
And then finally on the democracy side, I think voters looked at, you know, this is the first federal election since the January 6th attack. And
there's been a lot of election deniers who are up running these elections. And Paul Pelosi gets attacked at his home and some -- on the other side,
you know, made light of it.
I think voters looked at all of those things together and they realized that democracy really was on the ballot and that they needed to participate
and they needed to stand strong for the people who were standing up at home, but also in the world. You asked about Ukraine. There is a battle for
democracy going on around the globe. And I think the American electorate understands that.
AMANPOUR: And just, Senator, to drill down, because many in your own camp, many analysts who tilt Democratics that they were complaining that you were
all putting out the wrong message. That you weren't, you know, doing enough on inflation and on cost of living. And that -- my goodness, you know,
things like women's right to choose and protecting democracy were not as important to Americans.
But clearly, as you say, the results prove the opposite. Many abortion rights activists did win and many did say that it was the threat to
democracy that motivated them as well. So, what do you, as a party, as a group, kind of have to think again about or try to get some discipline to
stick with your guns in terms of, you guys were right.
KAINE: OK. Christiane, as you know about the Democrats, Will Rogers said, I don't believe in organized politics. That's why I'm a Democrat. He said
it 100 years ago. There can be because we are such a broad party, demographically, regionally, and even ideologically. There can sometimes be
a difficult time getting everybody on the message page. That's a reality that just comes with being an open door broad canvas party.
I do think though, I was campaigning with Democrats in Virginia and in states like Wisconsin in North Carolina. And I didn't see them omitting the
economic argument. They were making the economic argument. They did have to handle tough questions about inflation. But they could sell infrastructure
projects in every zip code in this country. And they could talk about a return of manufacturing jobs, not only with CHIPS, but other manufacturing
And so, I didn't see the lack of messaging around economic issues that some were worried about. I did see a lot of focus, yes, on the Dobbs decision
and abortion access and on democracy. I did see that. And I think that that was appropriate.
But I'm sure, as we do postmortems and we start to look forward to the next set of elections, to the extent that anybody out there, even pundits who
are, like, you're not messaging enough about the economy. We have to listen to that and see. Are there ways we can get even better at it? Because I do
think we got a story to tell.
AMANPOUR: Well, let me ask you because it's not all milk and honey, as we said. For you, I mean.
AMANPOUR: The actual -- as we say -- as we report right now, it has not all being cold. We don't exactly know the full and final results.
KAINE: That's correct.
AMANPOUR: But what actually does it mean, you know, for President Biden's agenda if the House, as expected, turns to Republican control? And what
does it mean if the Senate stays Democrat or, indeed, if that also flips?
KAINE: Well, Christiane, the House going Republican, which that would be the vaguest odds right now, although it would be narrow does pose
challenges for President Biden's agenda. But remember, many of the Biden administration accomplishments thus far have been bipartisan.
Infrastructure, CHIPS, a veterans bill, common sense gun safety. There have been some bills that have been partisan only. But President Biden is very
comfortable working in a bipartisan world. And so, he is going to keep looking for other wins in that space.
On the Senate side, I just got to tell you, there is nothing harder for a Senate majority leader than to have a 50/50 majority. We have a chance
because I think we are in the strong position in both Arizona and Nevada, not called yet. And I also think we are in a strong position in Georgia.
If we end up at 51, not 50, it is dramatically different in the Senate because the committees do not have to be evenly divided. Democrats will
have an edge on all committees which means we'll be able to get legislation floored. And most importantly, we'll be able to get all nominees that
President Biden to the floor and not have to chew up inordinate amounts of time because we can't get nominees out of committees. That will help the
president with judges, with ambassadors, with key national security officials at the Pentagon.
The Republicans have slowed them down with a 50/50 Senate. If we get to 51/49, you are going to see a lot more high-quality people quickly in place
in these positions that matters so much to how America is governed and our national security.
AMANPOUR: Senator, you mentioned Georgia. We understand it's going to run off, December 6th. But I want to ask what everybody also chatters about.
The whole, sort of, watercooler debate is what does this mean for Donald Trump? Does he come back? Has MAGA been diminished? What does it mean for
the next two years of this term?
KAINE: Well, I think last night's results were very, very humbling. Very humbling. I'm not sure you can humble Donald Trump. But for the Trump
operation, they were nearly disastrous. Now, the president has said that he is going to make a big exciting announcement next week at Mar-a-Lago. After
last night, they maybe should move it to four seasons landscaping because I don't think it's going to be anywhere near as exciting as it would've been
if he had a good night.
But I do think he had a bad night last night on the Republican side. I think most people are saying. I think it's true that Governor DeSantis had
a good night. I think you're seeing setup a very, very stiff internal party battle on the other side about who their leader will be going into 2024.
AMANPOUR: And, you know, you obviously ran with Hillary Clinton as her running mate against Trump back in 2016, so, you know. What does it mean
for the Democrats if Ron DeSantis does emerge as the, sort of, anointed one for the next round? Because he's very Trumpian. But he's -- he's got a --
well, some Democrats say he's a lot smarter. I don't quite know how else to put it.
KAINE: Yes. Look, Christiane, and I think that you used some interesting words and verbs in your question, emerge as the anointed one. I am not sure
that there's going to be an anointment. And I'm not sure that it's going to be, kind of a natural emergence.
I suspect that you're going to see an extremely vigorous contest on the Republican side. I mean, imagine this, President Trump was using some of
his rallies in the closing week. Instead of going after Democrats, he would spend time talking about Ron DeSantis or other Republicans that he didn't
like. And saying, I know some things about him that I'll tell everybody if they ran for president, or if Mike Pence runs, it would be horribly
So, I don't see a path for anyone on the Republican side. And this would probably be the case on any side in any presidential election now. I don't
see a path where there's sort of an anointment and a coronation. I think this is going to be a very, very tough two years as the Republican Party
grapples with the reality that President Trump still has a huge portion of the party just lock solid in his camp. There are many that are rethinking
that and looking for other alternatives. This is not going to get resolved anytime soon.
AMANPOUR: And in terms of foreign policy, potentially, the president has a lot of latitude in that regard, you know, in the next couple of years. What
do you expect to see there?
KAINE: Well, I -- you know, I do think that the two big challenges, you know, we started off talking about Ukraine. The Russian illegal invasion is
about Ukraine but it's also about to democracies, link arms, and stand together. And as you know here in the Senate, by a 95 to one vote, we voted
to gratify the treaty that Sweden and Finland are now entering NATO, which is fantastic.
And so, it shows that there are some real bipartisanship there. I think you are going to continue to see strong bipartisanship. Not unanimity, but
strong bipartisanship in terms of supporting Ukraine because they're a democratic ally. But also because we understand that that support sends a
message to dictators around the globe that democracies can link arm and stand up for the democratic values that we hold dear.
The second challenge, that's an everyday challenge for this administration is China. We have a very complex relationship with China. A trade
relationship, a competition to some degree. There's confrontation on items. The president has recently taken some really tough steps with respect to
Chinese chips manufacturing that are going to strengthen the U.S. together with our CHIPS Bill and pose some problems for China.
So, China, after the CCP's fifth-year -- you know, five-year conference that they had, the increasing consolidation of powers to Xi Jinping. What
does that mean for China? What does it mean for their economy? What does it mean for Taiwan? These are the two big issues. But as you know better than
just about anybody working in the fourth state (ph), the foreign relations issues are numerous and we always wake up every day and there's new ones
that we haven't thought that much about.
AMANPOUR: All right. Thank you so much for your take and for your valuable perspective, Senator Tim Kain.
And now, we're going to get more on all of this from the other side with Adam Kinzinger. He is the outgoing Republican Congressman from Illinois. He
did not run in this year's election. But we welcome him to the program again.
So, welcome. And you did not run but -- we'll -- and we'll talk to that -- we'll talk about that in a second. But I asked Senator Tim Kaine to react
to react to what I've heard from President Zelenskyy here. Particularly, looking at the incoming results and just hoping that no change in the shift
or balance of power in the U.S. affects the really staunch support that the U.S. has given this country. What do you think?
REP. ADAM KINZINGER (R-IL): Yes. I mean, look, I think we have to always be cautious of any, you know, shifts. We always have to defend against those,
kind of, corrupt influences within the GOP or even on the far left that are saying things like, you know, Ukraine, isn't worth it. Fighting for
democracy is not worth it.
But if I'm in Ukraine today and I'm worried about the U.S. abandoning Ukraine, I wouldn't be too worried about it. Again, it's important keep
attacking that. Keep talking about the importance of defending democracy. But I think there are strong bipartisan support to support Ukraine. And I
think that will continue, particularly, with the makeup of the House in the Senate going forward.
AMANPOUR: Yes. And in fact, I've been here for the last, you know, while. And there's been, actually, a pretty long parade of American bipartisan
congressional delegation. There was the national security adviser, there's been the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. And part of their message is to stand
As a Congressman, who has to sign off on, you know, appropriations and all these military aid and the money coming here, you must feel that it's an
investment worth having made, right? Because they seem to be doing pretty well with all of the gear and all of the training and all the support that
they're getting from you and other allies.
KINZINGER: Yes. I mean, look, here is the bottom line. Democracy, you know, the time when we are in the United States trying to figure out what
our democracy is going to look like. And it looks like it was somewhat defended by these election results last night, so far. You just have to
look at the people in Ukraine to see how important democracy is. That they're willing to put their life on the line to defend it, to support it,
to fight for it.
And, you know, look, if it is not them doing it -- you know, if we don't supply Ukraine with the weapons they need and the means to defeat the
Russians, the Russians could walk over Ukraine. And then it goes into NATO territory next. They are fighting on behalf of us all.
And so, I look at, you know, the money we spent, the aid we give them. And it is a really good deal. I mean, obviously, the war in itself is terrible.
But from a U.S. perspective, it is a cheap investment in comparison to if we have to bring the full might of the U.S. military. So, we need to keep
giving Ukraine not just what we have but figure out what else they need. And that includes, I think, eventually transition them over to NATO
standard equipment, NATO standard fighter jets, and longer-range things like the attackers (ph).
AMANPOUR: And air defense systems which you're already sending and they need more. I mean, of course, you speak with a lot of knowledge being a
military man yourself.
But I want to ask you now about the take away, you know, from the elections. Obviously, the Republicans did not do as well as was, sort of,
broadcast. What do you make of that? What do you make of what happened to the MAGA wing. Tell me about your takeaway.
KINZINGER: Yes, I think it's a number of things. So, I think the abortion decision had an impact. I think our work on the January 6th Committee had
an impact. I think the attack on Paul Pelosi had an impact. All of these things, kind of, worked together that even in a year where it's the
economy, it's the border, it's crime that is kind of overtaking people in terms of the things they care about the most or the things that are
impacting them the most. They don't feel comfortable with candidates that do not accept election results.
Candidate quality matters. You know, standing for the truth of democracy matters. And I think what we are seeing so far is that if you want to stand
up and deny elections and you want to stand up and attack democracy, you're not going to win. That does not mean though, by the way, that MAGA is going
to be, you know, extricated from the Republican Party. It's going to be an intense battle. But I think it is sending a very strong message that the
American people will not stand for election denialism and they still actually believe in democracy.
AMANPOUR: And I think that you told one of my colleagues that nonetheless, despite what you've just said and the results, there will be a certain
pretty big number of election deniers elected. And I think you said, out and out, extremists. Can you expand on that?
KINZINGER: Yes. I mean, look, I would say -- I would argue today that of the 200 some Republican members in Congress, there may only be one or two
that actually believe 2020 was stolen. They'll go out and say it was stolen, because that's, you know, they're performing. But now, in this next
Congress, you are going to have people that truly believe that the election in 2020 was stolen.
You look at a guy like Joe Kent out in Washington State who's been very openly, in essence, white supremacist and anti-government. You're going to
see people like that go to the United States Congress. So, even though this election didn't turn out to be the red wave that so many people expected,
there are going to be some very corrosive influences in the House of Reps.
And let's say the Republicans do take the majority by a very slim margin which looks possible. Now, all of a sudden, those people have great power
because they can deny the majority -- the votes pass something. And that would require the speaker, if it is Kevin McCarthy or whoever, to reach
across the aisle, to Democrats to pass things. But they haven't shown, really, a willingness or desire to do that in the past.
AMANPOUR: And I want to ask you the issue of messaging as well, because I did ask Senator Tim Kaine, as you know, the Democrats are sort of beating
themselves up for not putting out the right message. It turns out they did better than expected. But a conservative, Marc Thiessen, who you know of,
of course, said on Fox that, there was no red wave. That it's a searing indictment of the Republican Party. A searing indictment of the message
that we've been sending to the voters.
So, do you expect the message to change? And do you expect Trump, the former president, to still be in charge of the message?
KINZINGER: So, this is the million-dollar question. I think the next couple of weeks are going to be really indicative of this. So, given on
January 7, 2021, I thought the Trump thing was over and the Republican Party have been proven wrong. So -- you know, but I think what you'll see
is Donald Trump try to pin this loss on Kevin McCarthy. Because Donald Trump will never accept responsibility for it.
If he is able to do that, if he is able to convince the base that Kevin McCarthy lost it, and Donald Trump didn't, then you could see Trump stick
around. Otherwise, maybe there will be a big fight. I think, either way though, this is not a good day for Donald Trump. He may survive this at the
moment. But it's certain that his influence is waning.
AMANPOUR: So, could it be a good day for his, at least, stated -- publicly stated, you know, pundits, kind of, biggest competitor, and that is Ron
DeSantis of Florida, who did win big last night in Florida. And this is what he said afterwards.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): Florida was a refuge of sanity when the world went mad. We stood as the citadel of freedom for people across this country
and indeed across the world. We will never, ever surrender to the woke mob. Florida is where woke goes to die.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: So, does that sound like the beginning of a presidential campaign to you?
KINZINGER: Yes. I mean, it does. And I think there's no doubt that, you know, Ron DeSantis had a good night. But I think if you look across the
country, I don't think the message was about wokeism. I don't think the message was about, we need angry people. It was about we need a defensive
democracy, hopeful optimism for the future. And he's got to retune his messages if wants to be the candidate for that. But there's no doubt he had
a good night last night.
AMANPOUR: And let's just talk about you because you have decided not to run again. I understand that it was because of potentially, you know,
difficult primary. But it's always -- it's also, obviously, wrapped up in the politics that you're describing now and who holds the reins of the
Republican Party. Just tell us why you did not stand again and what you're going to do next?
KINZINGER: Well, so -- look, I'm starting an organization called Country First, it's country1st.com. My focus is going to be nationwide. It is
things like defeating toxic tribalism, getting rid of those -- that tribalism that exist that's grown fast.
The other reason I decided not to run is -- look, I've been in Congress for 12 years, that's a long time. The Democrats actually gerrymandered me out
of a district. But it was time to move on anyway. So, you know, I have no - - I'm not sad about leaving the House. I am not upset about it. I'm excited for what the future is. I have a new kid, too. I can spend a little more
time with. But I'm not giving up this fight. And we're going to take it even broader and actually be able to go to some more places than just
Illinois. Go around the country now and fight for democracy.
AMANPOUR: Well, congratulations on your new child. And of course, we sit here at ground zero for the global fight for democracy. So, Adam Kinzinger,
thank you so much for joining us.
Now, U.S. allies abroad have been watching these results closely as well. Any swing in the balance of power can impact relationships and alliances
overseas. Right now, the NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg is in the U.K. where he's been talking to the British Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak,
and drumming up further support for Ukraine. And he spoke to me just after that meeting in London.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Jens Stoltenberg, welcome to the program.
JENS STOLTENBERG, NATO SECRETARY GENERAL: Thank you so much for having me.
AMANPOUR: So, listen, you are in the U.K. there, a key member of NATO. We know that the midterms have happened in the United States. I spoke to the
Ukrainian president about whether support would still continue. What can you tell me about the level of support that NATO nations will continue to
show to Ukraine?
STOLTENBERG: NATO allies, and not least the United Kingdom where I am now, have stated very clearly that we are ready to continue to provide support
to Ukraine. We have already provided unprecedented level of military support and we will continue to do so. Because it is in our interest that
President Putin doesn't win in Ukraine. It would be a catastrophe for Ukraine if he wins. But it will also make us more vulnerable. So, we are
ready to provide -- continue to provide support for Ukraine.
AMANPOUR: So, I don't know whether you've been discussing this with the defense secretary there but, obviously, you can see the word coming from
the ground here in Ukraine. The Russian defense minister has ordered his forces to withdraw and regroup across the Dnipro River. Potentially
abandoning Kherson City. We know why Kherson is so important. What does that tell you?
STOLTENBERG: What is clear is that Russia is under pressure. They have been that, actually, for a long time. The Ukrainian forces have been able,
first to liberate -- to push the Russian forces out of the north, around Kyiv, then at east around Kharkiv. And now, they have been putting a lot of
pressure on the Russian forces in the western side of the Dnipro River, around Kherson.
It demonstrates the courage, the determination, the commitment of Ukrainian armed forces. And also, the importance of the continued support. And this
morning, I met many Ukrainian troops that are trained here in the United Kingdom by British trainers, by Canadian trainers, by trainers from all the
So, the combination of training Ukrainian forces, as we do, with advanced equipment and the courage of Ukrainian forces is making them possible to
make gains and to liberate territory as you now also see around Kherson.
AMANPOUR: And we hear, of course, from the Pentagon overnight, quite specifically, they analyzed the Russian losses as very, very heavy. At
least 80 percent of their land forces are bogged down apparently in the Ukraine. They've lost about half of their heavy equipment. Their precision
guided missiles have sort of tapped out. And this is a lot. I am asking the Ukrainian president about it, and he confirmed that they believe that you
are losing a lot much, much more losses than on the Ukrainian side. Do you have that sort of analysis as well?
STOLTENBERG: For the moment we have the same analysis that Russia has lost a lot, and they have actually dedicated around 80 percent of their land
forces to Ukraine and they have taken heavy losses, both when it comes to personnel but also, when it comes to equipment and at least the more
advanced precision types of ammunition. So, this shows again the gains that Ukrainians have been able to make with the support of NATO allies and their
At the same time, we must not forget that Russia still has a lot of military capabilities. We have seen the missile attacks, the drones'
attacks against Ukrainian cities, the critical infrastructure, powerplants. And therefore, the war is not over and we should not underestimate the
brutality of the Russian armed forces. And there is -- the continued suffering on the cannon effect on the Ukrainian people and armed forces.
AMANPOUR: Indeed. And I speak to you, I'm here Kyiv and it's black behind me. There are rolling blackouts still because of the attacks on the
civilian energy infrastructure. But I want to ask you again, because I want to read some of these facts and figures, about, sort of, the worry Europe
and maybe even in the United States, the financial costs are getting so heavy now that it might cause some kind of -- you know, kind of Ukraine
In the United States, Wall Street Journal says that 30 percent of American voters think they are doing too much. That is up from 6 percent in March.
And just wondering, you know, how you read it in Europe, where there's, as we know, a much heavier dependence on Ukrainian energy? Do these stories
of, sort of, battlefield victories helped push and guarantee continued support?
STOLTENBERG: The gains -- the victories that the Ukrainians are achieving on the battlefield shows that our support is making a difference. And I
think that actually helps motivate continued support from NATO allies and partners around the world.
Second, this, of course, right, that we are paying a price. Higher energy bills. Inflation. The cost of just providing all this military
international support of Ukraine. But the price we pay as NATO allies is measured in dollars, euros, while the price the Ukrainians are paying it is
measured in lives lost. And we need, again, to understand that we support Ukrainians because we stand in solidarity with Ukraine and in their right
for self-defense, which is actually why trying (ph) U.N. charter.
But we are also supporting the Ukrainians because it is in our interest. Because if President Putin wins, it will send a message to him, but also,
to all the authoritarian leaders that they will achieve their goals by using brutal military force, and that will make the world even more
dangerous and also more vulnerable. And that's the reason why we cannot allow Putin to win in Ukraine.
AMANPOUR: So, look, you are a former prime minister. You've run for election. You deal with all of these authoritative regimes right now in
your current capacity. I wonder what you make of the fact that actually President Biden and the Democrats who really did use the defense of
democracy, as you have just been saying, as one of their very major selling points in these midterms. You know, they weren't crushed. They did better
than analysts predicted they would do. What do you think that says to Putin who his people openly said that they were going to keep interfering in the
STOLTENBERG: There is strong bipartisan support in the United States for supporting Ukraine. And the midterm elections doesn't change that. If
anything, it sends the message of the opposite, that the United States, there will still be a strong majority in favor of supporting Ukraine, and
that's important. The good thing is that the United States brought support, but European allies are stepping up. And more and more countries are
joining in in helping Ukraine. In the just and important fight against a war of Russia by President Putin.
AMANPOUR: Finally, the president here told me that they need a lot more air defenses systems to ward off against these kamikaze drones, against the
missiles that are coming and, you know, attacking their infrastructure. Are more of them coming?
STOLTENBERG: Yes. That has been one of the top priorities from the NATO allies. We -- weeks has deployed more air defense systems and also,
ammunition to the existing systems. And just over the last days, we have seen now some other advance systems coming in. And I urge all allies to
step up and provide even more air defense, because we see the devastating effects of the drones and the missile strikes against Ukrainian cities and
they know that we have the systems that can actually shoot those -- down those missiles and drones. And the Ukrainians can operate them. So, we need
to bring out more and that is what the allies are doing.
AMANPOUR: All right. Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, thank you for joining me.
STOLTENBERG: Thank you so much for having me, Christiane.
AMANPOUR: And now, we return to those midterm elections. As we mentioned, the Democrats defied gloomy predictions. But still, what would it mean for
President Biden's agenda? Our next guest, "The New York Times" political reporter, Astead Herndon, has been paying close attention towards these
results. And he is sharing his insights with Hari Screenivasan.
HARI SREENIVASAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Christiane, thanks. Astead Herndon, thanks so much for joining us. Your big takeaways from last
ASTEAD HERNDON, NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER, NEW YORK TIMES: Oh, I think that we have several. I mean, the largest has to be that the Republican
Party underperformed expectations and that we saw a real permanence of the stench that Donald Trump has left on the Republican brand. And a lot of the
House races that they were expected to pick up in, particularly in those suburbs and a lot of statewide candidates that were hoping to have a chance
at those Senate and governor races, Republicans fell short. And I think that is a pretty universal story even as it looks like they are going to be
able flip the House of Representatives.
So, I think that you are going to have an -- I think, this morning, we have an interesting picture or margin where Democrats are kind of taking a
victory lap even though they are going to probably lose one chamber of commerce and it's -- and chamber of Congress and it is Republicans who have
been sentenced to soul-searching mode because they didn't meet those expectations.
SREENIVASAN: What do you think was responsible for the ticket splitting that must have happened in several of these states where Republicans might
have voted for somebody that they find maybe too much in the Donald Trump camp versus what would be a traditional Republican camp or Republicans who
might have voted for the candidates but ballot measures that concern, say, abortion rights, decided to split with the party's position?
HERNDON: Yes. I think it says that this Republican Party positions were out of touch with median voters. I mean, we shouldn't over complicate it.
It is a story that we often see being accused on the Democratic side has kind of come around to the Republican side that there was such a focus on
this kind of specific Trump grievance and causes that it caused the party to really be out of step with the kind of core median midterm voter.
Though, the districts we saw Republicans win last night are mostly the give me districts, the districts that were already drawn to them -- to their
advantage in redistricting and that they are almost baked into the cost of yesterday. They were not winning races where they had to persuade voters or
had to really show strength in this environment, they mostly lost those races.
So, I think your point is true that there is definitely a voter that we can talk about here, in Georgia or in places like Michigan, that split their
ticket between a more -- a conservative what -- but what we might call a more traditional conservative and kind of keeping distance from the most
I think if you are a Republican who doesn't think -- who thinks the Republican Party has gone too far, who thinks Donald Trump has been an
anchor on the party, you are going to use today as really your alarm bell to say that the party has to really excise itself from those Trumpy
messages if it wants to make the biggest gains.
SREENIVASAN: In your "Run-Up" podcast coming up to this, you talked to so many different voters from so many different states. Where do you think
that loyalty still is and does kind of electoral performance end up maybe changing their minds on how long they choose to stay with the Donald Trump
wing of the Republican Party?
HERNDON: I think that you've hit on the core question here. I mean, if -- it's clear that the Donald Trump impim (ph) -- or Republicans has shrunk,
right? So, even if we are talking about a Trump base, that is 25 percent of the party. That is 30 percent of the party. It is not driving the majority
of Republicans and it's certainly not driving the majority of the country.
But the problem is, it is hardened, radicalized 25 to 30 percent. That it's keeping its pressure on the Republicans. And to this point, has to -- has
shown no willingness to really migrate that support to a different candidate. And so, even with Republicans taking over the House, they are
going to have to deal with that 25, 30 percent. That would be -- those folks could be driving the investigations, could be driving the messages,
could be driving what Kevin McCarthy feels more beholden to.
So, I think your point is really true where the electoral results speak to a kind of universal takeaway that Donald Trump is holding Republicans back,
but it is not -- that is not a takeaway that has really stopped them so far. And you have not seen Republican's kind of establishment figures even
with Donald Trump's missteps be able to take the party back from him.
And so, it's unclear to me that last night, even with all of that objective evidence, that they're going to be able to finally pull that off. And I
think the key -- the first test that we'll have there is Kevin McCarthy. What is the new House caucus? How are they sounding? Who are they
empowering? Do they come out of this with a slim majority that they say, hey, maybe we should work with President Biden and should empower the more
moderate swing voter side, or do they triple down on that base even though their electoral results yesterday would tell them that that might be a bad
SREENIVASAN: This was also framed as a contest between two different narratives. One that perhaps the Dobbs decision, overturning Roe v. Wade,
would be the animating force that gets Democrats to the polls. And then, later, well, maybe that happened too soon and really, it's about inflation
and crime, messages that Republicans really wanted to impress upon voters. It's hard to think that the Dobbs decision did not have an impact when it
comes to the young people that turned out to the polls, that women in suburban districts, otherwise, registered Republicans.
HERNDON: Yes. It totally seems to have had a big effect. And I think that's born out in data for a lot of those, particularly in suburb
districts, particularly for young people in those states that have referendums on the ballot where abortion was up to voters, you saw that
really drive turnout. I think Michigan is a great example here. You have a Republican slate that had gone in that hyper conservative Trump direction
and you had abortion protecting -- the ballot measure to protect abortion on the ballot last night, and you saw that really drive Democratic
And for Republicans, the fact that they were out of step, where most voters were on abortion, really came back to hurt them. This is something that is
going to continue going forward, even as, on the local level, we saw some results that went in the opposite direction. I mean, state legislatures are
going to be able to enshrine those abortion laws in places like North Carolina and Wisconsin. But when you see that measure brought to the
people, when you see that measure brought to the public, almost always you have seen them rally to protect abortion rights, even among some places
that we might consider too conservative to do so.
SREENIVASAN: One of the races that -- or one of the states that is pretty intriguing, and a lot of people were watching last night, was Georgia. You
know, the voters that you spoke to that oppose abortion rights yet still vote for or support Herschel Walker, this ends up kind of giving us this
look into a much more complicated decision-making process for some people.
SREENIVASAN: You know, how does that work when you literally have a pastor running against a person who has been found to be deceiving on a very key
issue that he is running on?
HERNDON: Yes. When I talked to Herschel Walker supporters about this, they were very kind of cleareyed on it. None of them said that -- none of them
disagreed with the fact that Herschel Walker looks like he has paid for multiple abortions in his life. What they were saying was that basically
individual transgressions don't matter to them as much as political power and as much as the ability to shape that.
And so, one voter very clearly told me is, OK, he might have done that. But what he is going to do in Washington is help pass a ban for more abortions.
And so, as someone who considers themselves pro-life, that voter was saying that is more important to them than his individual hypocrisy.
And I think that this is something that a lot of kind of conservative evangelicals have made. And remember, that is a bargain they made with
Donald Trump themself.
HERNDON: You know, that is not someone who reflects Christianity and his personal life in any sense of the word, but that was someone who they are
willing to go along with because of what he can give them politically. They have made that same calculation.
SREENIVASAN: What's your assessment of what happened in Pennsylvania, between John Fetterman and know that Mehmet Oz?
HERNDON: Yes. I think we have another case of weaker Senate candidates. I mean, this is someone who was always polling behind where they should be in
a state like Pennsylvania. But in recent weeks, had closed that gap, and under the assumption that Republicans had come home, that Republicans had
really rallied around that or that the debate had hurt Fetterman, particularly after he suffered a stroke. We did not see that debate
performance really touched his poll or fundraising numbers, and that was proven out yesterday. Voters still -- his voters came out and really
rallied behind him.
What you really did see is a Senate candidate in Mehmet Oz that turned -- that blew an opportunity, a huge opportunity for Republicans in an open
seat in Pennsylvania. Remember, this is a state Donald Trump won in 2016, in the place that was supposed to prove his kind of cachet among white
working class, particularly outside of cities, that has not come to fruition in the Senate races.
And I think that really speaks to what was the overconfidence that Trump could say anything, he could back anybody and his voters would come around
to it. But his voters don't have the same priority set as he does and maybe he likes watching Dr. Oz on television and he thinks he's a good vessel for
those messages but he was not someone who was the right calibration to take Trumpism to Pennsylvania.
And that was the feeling after the primary. But it was kind of thought that it had changed a little bit in the lead up to the election. I think
yesterday makes clear that certainly Mastriano and definitely Oz were wrong candidates for Republicans who really fumbled what they would consider a
clear and easy target for victory in the midterm era.
SREENIVASAN: And depending on who you ask in the exit polls and leading up into the election, if they were Republicans, the issues of the -- sort of
inflation affects resonated with them. If they were Democrats, the sort of threat to democracy was resonating with Democratic voters. Did that work as
a get out the vote strategy for the Democratic Party? And is that something that can be sustained between now and 2024?
HERNDON: I think we can say clearly that the Republican brand has been tainted by a view of extremism, and that was true across the board and it
helped drive some Democratic support. I don't know if that's all completely tied to democracy protection. I don't know if that's extremism with
abortion. I think it's kind of all of the above rather than just singularly one. But I definitely think that for Democrats, the idea that the system
had to be protected into that motivating some voters.
When you look at Wisconsin, for example. Madison -- whereas Dane County in Wisconsin, had huge turnout, actually, for the governor, ended up making up
what was a less than expected turnout in Milwaukee. And so, that's a shift for where Democrats are really getting those votes. It's not from people of
color in the cities. It is from a more affluent, collegiate base. It's from a more college educated base. But though they are turning in Democratic
votes to really stem their losses and other sides of the state.
But I think that should inform us about that democracy message. If that is what saved Tony Evers in Wisconsin, a governor who really, really needed
reelection and was running on that kind of democracy pitch, considering what Republicans have done, gerrymandering wise, in that state, that's not
a message that really resonated with people who feel the most affects in the city. In Milwaukee, the poorest folks in the state. That's a message
that he really got to work among the suburbs and among the more college educated class in Dane County.
I think that that continues a trend where the base of Democrats are maybe getting a little wider, maybe getting a little more college educated, and
that might help them in the midterms but that is also a response to the new type of messages they're doing. That democracy protection is working among
a certain cut set, but we should make sure we're clear that the Democratic base is changing. And it is less driven, at least in last night's results
and in 2020, it's less driven by a city -- less driven by working class votes in the city.
SREENIVASAN: You know, last time we spoke, about four weeks ago or so, we were talking about the number of election deniers who were on the ballot.
And I wonder if that has reached past its peak. Last -- I mean, we also saw remarkably in Arizona yesterday, not only an increased police presence at
the polls, we also saw the election board there trying to increase transparency, letting local news cameras in, watching -- allowing people to
see the tabulation. But we still have -- I don't know the exact number -- probably 100 plus election deniers who are in office this morning, or will
be in office after last night.
HERNDON: Hundred percent. I mean, it's an important -- and that's an important calibration to make. And I think -- because while certainly the
biggest ticket election deniers did not succeed last night. People like Doug Mastriano, people in those Senate and governors' races on the down
ballot way -- in the down ballot, in the state legislature or on some court seats. You have that viewpoint now enshrined into government.
And I think that the people have kind of underestimated how much of that was set from the time of Republican primary. When Republicans back those
individuals in their primaries, it ensured that Trumpism, election denialism had a home kind of, at least for the foreseeable future, in our
Now, Democrats have done -- had defied political gravity to make sure that home does not make it fully to Congress or fully in all those governors
houses. But you are right that election denial-ism and that false conspiracy, that Trump base push has won some core races yesterday. But it
will be about whether they have the party willingness to follow through.
When we were talking about a wave yesterday, you know, the hope among people who support Trump was going to be that the wind was so overwhelming,
so complete that not only did they sweep into office but they had a mandate of action on the election front, on the abortion front, to really make
those conspiracies turn out into law. That is not what they have.
And so, the question will be, in my opinion, whether the people who do come into office retain Republican support to act. And that I think speaks to
our kind of larger central thing here is, will the Republican Party use yesterday as a chance to further distance itself from Donald Trump or is
that not something that's going to be settled until 2024?
SREENIVASAN: Host of "The Run-Up" podcast and national political reporter for "The New York Times, Astead Herndon, thanks so much for joining us.
HERNDON: Thank you so much for having me. I appreciate it.
AMANPOUR: And finally, tonight from Kyiv, just a few years ago, then comedian Volodymyr Zelenskyy and his architect trained wife, Olena
Zelenska, could never have guessed they'd be thrust into the spotlight as wartime president and a spouse. Because of security concerns, they don't
get to spend much time together these days. But when we met, the thrust and parity of marital life, love and a sense of humor were all on display.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: What strength do you get from each other?
ZELENSKYY: If I can?
ZELENSKYY: That is my love and that is my best friend. So, that is my energy. I wanted to answer your question at the very beginning. When Olena
told you, like, she prepared breakfast for the children in the morning and prepared clothes and et cetera, and what I wanted to tell you that I have
no such possibility. So, nobody gives me breakfast in the morning. I mean, that it's such, such, such a difficult period.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: A note of humor amid the darkness. Tune in tomorrow night to see the rest of this interview. A global exclusive with the first couple who
have become role models for their own people and for many around the world.
That is it for now. Remember, you can always catch us online and on our podcast. You can find it at cnn.com/podcast and on all major platforms.
Just search "Amanpour." Thanks for watching and goodbye from Kyiv.