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Jill Biden Meets With Ukrainian First Lady On Mother's Day; U.S. Announces New Sanctions; U.S. Diplomats Return To Embassy For The First Time Since War Began; American Who Fell Ill At Bahamas Resort Hospitalized In Miami; Rock Stars Bono And The Edge Of U2 Perform In Ukraine; Democrats In Tight Races Lean On Abortion Rights Fight; Stock Market Looks To Rebound From New Lows. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired May 08, 2022 - 19:00   ET



PAMELA BROWN, CNN HOST: I'm Pamela Brown in Washington. The top stories for you on this Sunday night.

On Mother's Day, the first ladies of the United States and Ukraine unite. Jill Biden and Olena Zelenska share a hug during an unannounced visit.

Plus new details tonight after a number of Americans get sick at a resort in the Bahamas. Three are dead and now a fourth is hospitalized here in the U.S.

And first it was Ed Sheeran, now Ukrainian pop star is rocking out with Bono and The Edge. Taras Topolia joins me live.

You're in the CNN NEWSROOM.

Well, 10 weeks after the start of the war in Ukraine the highest- ranking official from Moscow yet is visiting the devastated city of Mariupol. Ahead of Russia's victory day tomorrow the deputy prime minister said the restoration of peaceful life was beginning in Mariupol while failing to acknowledge that Russian troops have been bombarding Mariupol for 10 weeks straight.

Survivors of yesterday's bombing of an eastern Ukrainian school are talking about their harrowing experience with one man describing being slammed down by a slab of concrete as the blast rained debris on to people taking shelter inside that building. At least 60 people are feared dead at that school.

And on the Day of Remembrance for those who lost their lives in World War II, Ukraine's president is urging the world to not forget.


VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): This year we say never again differently. We hear never again differently. It sounds painful, cruel, without an exclamation, but with a question mark you say, never again? Tell Ukraine about it.


BROWN: First Lady Jill Biden spent part of her Mother's Day on an unannounced trip to Ukraine. She met with the Ukrainian first lady who has not been seen in public since the war began.

Arlette Saenz joins me from the White House. So, Arlette, this is the first time an American first lady has visited a warzone since Laura Bush went to Afghanistan in 2008.

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Pamela. It was really a powerful moment as First Lady Jill Biden crossed into Ukraine to meet with the first lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenskyy. The two women had exchanged correspondence for several weeks and First Lady Jill Biden ultimately deciding she wanted to make this trip on Mother's Day to show the solidarity with the Ukrainian people.

The two women met at a converted school that is housing displaced Ukrainian citizens and the first lady talked about why she wanted to make this trip.


JILL BIDEN, FIRST LADY OF THE UNITED STATES: I wanted to come on Mother's Day. I thought it was important to show the Ukrainian people that this war has to stop. And this war has been brutal and that the people of the United States stand with the people of Ukraine.


SAENZ: So First Lady Jill Biden today taking on that diplomatic role as the U.S. is continuing to try to show solidarity with Ukraine as this Russian war against their country wages on.

BROWN: And President Biden and other G7 leaders met virtually today with President Zelenskyy. What came out of that meeting?

SAENZ: Well, the G7 leaders got together really to try to show their support and solidarity for Ukraine. They met virtually for a little over an hour with Ukrainian President Zelenskyy. You can see President Biden participated in this meeting from his home in Wilmington, Delaware. If you look really closely there, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was actually in the room in Ukraine with Zelenskyy as this call went on.

Now in addition to talking about additional military assistance and economic assistance that their countries can send to Ukrainian the G7 leaders also talked about the next raft of sanctions that they can impose against Russia. The U.S. today unveiling a new sanctions package that targeted three Russian state-run TV organizations. It's going to ban U.S. advertising for those stations.

Additionally, these sanctions are prohibiting U.S. companies providing management and consulting services to Russians. The goal there is try to ensure that they're not helping any Russians evade sanctions coming from the U.S. and its allies.


And additionally, the U.S. is placing exports controls on the industrial sector. Now also after this meeting the G7 leaders released a statement saying that they would be phasing out or banning Russian oil and gas. Of course the U.S. has already banned Russian energy imports but this is quite significant given that the dependence that so many European countries have on Russian energy products.

So they did not provide a timeline for that but they did commit to phasing out Russian oil and gas from their countries but clearly the U.S. and their allies trying to have this full show of force today with solidarity with Ukraine especially as Russia tomorrow is expected to celebrate victory day -- Pamela.

BROWN: All right, Arlette Saenz at the White House. Thank you so much, Arlette.

And U.S. diplomats are back in Kyiv for the first time since the war began. The acting U.S. ambassador and her team arrived in the capital city this morning on a visit timed to commemorate Victory in Europe Day. The U.S. embassy in Kyiv was closed in February just days before Russia's military invasion began.

Our Sara Sidner joins me now from Kyiv.

So, Sara, how big of a step is this toward the official reopening of the U.S. embassy in the capital city?

SARA SIDNER, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it certainly is a step. You will recall that the U.S. announced it was closing its embassy here in Kyiv on February 14th, that was 10 days before the Russians invaded Ukraine. We were there when the top U.S. diplomat came back to the embassy, the acting ambassador there, Kristina Kvien, and her team returned to Kyiv today.

They were here to commemorate Victory Day, the day the Western allies defeated Nazi Germany in World War II, but her arrival certainly does indicate as she said that they are another step closer to fully opening the U.S. embassy. Right now, though, it is not the case.


KRISTINA KVIEN, ACTING U.S. AMBASSADOR TO UKRAINE: This is not an official opening of the embassy. So no, this isn't sort of the official permanent -- sorry -- reopening. But we of course will continue to work towards that and hope to officially open the embassy soon.


SIDNER: You heard her say officially open the embassy soon. That was a promise that was given by U.S. officials to Ukrainian officials but at this point in time we should note that as this press conference was about to get underway there was a raid siren that went off and that delayed everything. There is still obviously a war going on here, although you are not seeing it in Kyiv and the embassy being very careful as to not give an exact date as to when it might fully reopen -- Pam.

BROWN: All right. Sara Sidner, thank you so much live for us in Kyiv for us tonight.

Tomorrow Russia will celebrate the anniversary of its victory over the Nazis at the same it's conducting an unprovoked war on Ukraine in the name of de-Nazification of a country that has a Jewish president.

I want to bring in retired Army Lieutenant General Mark Hertling to talk about it.

Hi, General. So you have the first lady in Ukraine. The American diplomats starting their return to Ukraine. What kind of message does this send to Vladimir Putin ahead of Russia's Victory Day?

LT. GEN. MARK HERTLING, CNN MILITARY ANALYST: Yes, you know, Pam, today is not only Mother's Day in the United States, it's also Mother's Day in many the European -- well, all of European nations. When soldiers at war no matter what country they're at war with, mothers and their children are especially concerned about their soldier's safety. But Ukrainian women are feeling the displacement beyond just the fact their soldiers are gone, something that most military espouses don't experience.

You know, Pam, my wife has an expression that soldiers wear their ribbons on their uniforms but spouses wear their uniforms on their heart. So I'm sure Dr. Biden in Ukraine with President Zelenskyy's spouse touched women around the world, and I'm sure especially touched mothers in Russia who don't even know what's going on with their soldiers. Are they dead? Are they wounded? So I think it's a very powerful message for Dr. Biden to be in Ukraine and the other Eastern European countries today.

BROWN: Yes, I think about all of those moms who had to flee Ukraine, raising their kids alone while their husbands are fighting. Don't know if their husbands alive or dead. It's just really important to remember all of those women on this Mother's Day.

I want to talk about again as we look ahead to Russia's Victory Day celebration tomorrow. Reuters is reporting that Moscow will conduct a flyover with its, quote, "doomsday plane." Now that plane would protect top Russian officials in a nuclear war. It's the first time the plane has been flown in the parade since 2010.


How should the Biden administration view that? Should they view it as an escalation?

HERTLING: Well, this is just another attempt at an escalation or an attempt at a bluff or a threat. Whatever, how you want to say it. But it's interesting, Pam, because, you know, Air Force One serves as our president's C-2 aircraft in case of a major security event in the country.

So those so-called doomsday plane flying as part of a military parade, if I were a Russian citizen and I'm certainly not completely understanding the culture, but it would scare the hell out of me to see a doomsday plane, something that would allow Putin to escape any kind of carnage going on the ground. I think would send a message to the Russian people not just the bluff to the rest of the world but the Russian people, he is serious about this.

And why should he live when the rest of us could be the victims of a retaliatory response with nuclear weapons? So it's going to attempt to send a signal that the C-2 -- the command-and-control aircraft is flying over the crowd, but there are other messages that it could also send to the Russian population who are beginning to see a reflection of how bad this war is going through various sources and it could also give an indication of what they don't want to be in for next.

BROWN: Speaking to the G7 leaders Ukrainian President Zelenskyy told them that his ultimate aim would be for Russia to have a complete withdrawal from Ukraine. And I'm wondering, of course we've heard that before, and of course that would be his hope, right. But how realistic is that?

HERTLING: Yes. You know, that's all in the mind of President Putin and we have seen that his mind has been conflicted. Not really taking a lot of good advice from his advisers but also being caught up in narcissism and insecurities in terms of the state of Russia today and it's gotten worse because of the defeats on the battlefield. And make no mistake about it, he has to know how poorly his military is performing in this fight.

So I don't think he's going to completely withdraw. He is going to look for face-saving measures. We talked about that a lot. I'm sure the administration is attempting to figure out what would happen next. I don't see that as an end state. He won't completely withdraw. He'll find a way to garner a bit of the Ukrainian territory. We just don't know how much and how he would do that and whether he would end the war based on the feeling that he could do that.

BROWN: All right. Geneal Mark Hertling, good to see you today. Thank you so much for offering your perspective and for your time tonight.

HERTLING: And Happy Mother's Day to you, Pamela.

BROWN: Thank you so much.

Well, by day he treats wounded Ukrainians. By night he is a pop star lifting his people's spirits and now Taras Topolia is singing with people like Bono and The Edge. Taras joins me ahead.

Plus Democrats will wait for a Supreme Court ruling before they try to make Roe vs. Wade the law of the land but can they get the support to help it pass?



BROWN: And American woman who got sick at a resort in the Bahamas is now in a Miami hospital in serious condition. Three other Americans at the resort died of unknown causes.

CNN's Polo Sandoval has the latest on this mystery.

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Pamela, well, the Royal Bahamas Police telling me that they expect to release the identifies of those three Americans found dead at that resort in the Bahamas hopefully by tomorrow. That's according to police commissioner Paul Role who tells me they were two American couples who are vacationing there at the Sandals Resort on Great Exuma Island.

Staff at that facility initially called investigators early on Friday morning when unconscious man was discovered at one of the property's villas. Now that man was eventually pronounced dead there at the scene. A woman also in the room, though, she survived. She was airlifted to the hospital and has since been taken to a Miami hospital where she was listed in serious condition. Officials, though, have not elaborated on the nature of her injuries.

Now during the course of the investigation on Friday, the staff also discovered the bodies of that other couple, that second couple that was in another villa. Both of them also pronounced dead on Friday. Investigators say they had visited a local medical facility the day before they were found. According to investigators they were complaining about experiencing vomiting and nausea. Investigators saying they were treated and then allowed to return back to their lodging for the night.

What's a crucial clue here according to investigators is that when they were found on Friday they showed signs of convulsion so that is certainly a crucial clue here as they try to find out exactly what led up to that situation. It's also why environmental scientists there in the Bahamas are now assisting in the investigation to make sure that this wasn't part of a larger public health emergency, though at this point authorities believe that it was an isolated issue.

It's also a very important sign is the bodies did not show any signs of trauma according to investigators so they are ruling out the possibility of foul play. Sandals Resort for their part, they released a statement over the weekend saying that they followed the protocols during this emergency and they are also not only helping investigators as this case continues but also the families of those affected -- Pamela.

BROWN: All right, Polo Sandoval, thank you.

And you are in the CNN NEWSROOM on this Sunday. Up next, meet Ukraine's top dog honored today by President Zelenskyy. Plus Ukrainian pop star Taras Topolia is back with me after getting the chance to perform with members of U2 in Kyiv. He joins us live up next.



BROWN: In Ukraine a show of solidarity and song.


BROWN: That's U2 front man Bono and his bandmate The Edge on guitar, and in between them a frequent guest on this show, Ukrainian pop star Taras Topolia. They performed a 40-minute concert in a Kyiv subway station. And it follows Taras' collaboration with Ed Sheeran for remakes of his hit song "2step."



BROWN: Taras is back with us now. Oh my gosh, Taras, I just think about when we first started having you on the show and you were trying to collaborate with Ed Sheeran, it didn't work out. Now you're doing music videos with Ed Sheeran, you're performing at metro stations with members of U2. When we talked to you last night you had no idea that was happening. Right?

TARAS TOPOLIA, UKRAINIAN MUSICIAN: Yes. Hello, everybody. Thank you for calling. First of all I want to say, to send the Mother's Day greetings to my women, to my sweetie, to my mom. I hope that they will watch this because they are in the United States now. So I'm so missing them. And I hope that one day we'll be together.

And answering your question, yes. The Bono called me the day before yesterday. And he asked me, he proposed me to came to Kyiv, and to take a part in this concert. And it was so incredible for us. So unexpected but it was true. And of course we said yes. And came to Kyiv. And we were in -- on the way to Kyiv during all the night. But in the morning or yesterday we came to Kyiv and just to sing a song with him, like it was impromptu, like it was improvisation. And I can't -- I still can't believe that it happened.

BROWN: I'm sure you're still processing this. Even as you were going off with still little sleep. I heard you were like just getting in two-hour naps here and there.

U2 posted that President Zelenskyy invited the band to perform as a way to show solidarity with the Ukrainian people. What did it mean to you to have them come to Kyiv and perform with them in this metro station? I mean, here you are right in between them. It must have just been surreal.

TOPOLIA: You know, this Irish bravery guys are incredible. And it is so powerful signal to Ukrainian people and to whole world that they stand by us. That they support Ukraine. And it is so big pleasure for us. And of course we are very appreciative for this. And the main -- you know, Bono told me that before the concert started that, he told me that, man, you can say everything you want.

You can apply to everyone you want and they let me to talk to the world by standing nearby of him while I was standing and singing by him. I had an opportunity to talk to the world and I asked the world leaders to extract, to help our president and our diplomacy to extract the Ukrainian soldiers from Mariupol, from the Azovstal.

And it was not just song. Like it was not just the song. It was also my opportunity to talk to the world. And it was also a rescue for us.

BROWN: Well, we like having you on the show as well to give you another opportunity to do that and we started this conversation talking about Mother's Day. I know we've had your wife on with you. on the show. She is in the United States helping to raise your kids while you fight on the battlefield.

And if you would, just talk a little bit about what it means to you that your wife is essentially a single mother right now raising your kid so that you can focus on the fight to defend Ukraine.

TOPOLIA: The war interrupted our useful, peaceful life. Like, and it's not just only my story.


Story of my colleagues my friends, musicians, so our band Antytila, and story of millions of Ukrainian people, and it's terrible.

But you know, when I am thinking about this, when I understand that my wife are in safe city, among the people of United States with the help of my mom, my relatives, it gives me power to do my job and to do my military duties good, like well.

And of course, in this case, I want another time say thank you for American people to support, and believe me, we will never forget this. We will never forget this support we will always remember what you have done during this war and how you help us not to lose in this war, but get a victory, but I know that we will get a victory with your support. It is very important for us.

Know this, remember this.

BROWN: That's really touching. Thank you, Taras, you're always so full of gratitude whenever you come on, and it's 2:30 where you are, go get some sleep. Thank you for staying up to talk with us. We so appreciate it.

And again, Happy Mother's Day to your care incredible wife and mom.

TOPOLIA: Thank you. Goodbye.

BROWN: Well, he may not be as well known as Bono, but Ukraine's most famous dog is getting plenty of attention. Patron, the Jack Russell Terrier became a national hero for his work with bomb disposal teams and he is credited with uncovering some 150 munitions.

Today, President Zelenskyy awarded Patron and his owner, the State Award for Dedicated Service and it came during a meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Well, the Senate Democratic leader says all eyes will be on the Chamber this week and he has now enough vote to force all senators to take a stand on abortion rights.

Alice Stewart and Maria Cardona weigh in on the stakes, next. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


BROWN: The first test in the new political fight over abortion rights comes this week. Democrats plan to bring to the Senate floor a bill to codify the right to an abortion.


SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): This is no longer an abstract exercise. This is the real deal and everyone's eyes are on them. So, we can always hope and we must have this vote. Every senator must show where he or she stands.


BROWN: The effort is expected to fail. Democrats do not have the votes, but they hope it will help galvanize the party's base. Six months from today is midterm Election Day.

And here with me to discuss is Republican strategist, Alice Stewart; and Democratic strategist, Maria Cardona. They are coming at this issue from two different perspectives, but we're going to have a civil conversation we think that is so important on an issue that people are so passionate about on both sides, but you can have a civil discussion about it. And you ladies, are going to show us how.

Alice, first to you. Let's get to this new CNN poll finding that a majority of Americans support Congress passing a law establishing a nationwide right to abortion. How do you expect the vote this week to go? Is there a risk of a no vote coming back to haunt Republicans like Senator Susan Collins?

ALICE STEWART, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Look, the big question this week on that vote will be the Democrats. What is Joe Manchin going to do? What is Kyrsten Sinema going to do? That's where Chuck Schumer has the real concern is. He is going to have Democrats that aren't going to vote to codify this. So that's where the big issue.

We're going to see Republicans across the board, stand up for life, in my opinion, and because that's what we've been doing.

Look, this surprise announcement and leak of this Supreme Court opinion, this is an overnight sensation that's been 50 years in the making. Republicans have been fighting to protect life ever since Roe v. Wade was enacted, 63 million children have been aborted since Roe v. Wade was put into place and Republicans have worked hard to galvanize the base behind this pro-life issue, as well as appointing Justices that look at a strict interpretation of the Constitution, and that's exactly what happened here.

What I see this doing for the midterm elections is galvanizing those social conservatives that have been fighting for this day, but also galvanize Republicans as a whole on the policies that Democrats are currently implementing that are just not working for the country. BROWN: What do you think, Maria? Do you think that this is going to be

more helpful to Republicans come midterms or no?

MARIA CARDONA, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: No. Absolutely not. And you're seeing it because not many Republicans are really standing in to really talk about this issue in in a way that says this is going to really work for us. They've been kind of shy about even talking about it.

When you ask them about this as an issue for the midterm elections, they kind of shy away from and they say, no, we believe it's going to be the economy and inflation. They don't want to talk about this, and I think it's because they see the polls, the majority of people in this country from the time that Roe v. Wade became the decision and the law of the land support the fact that women should have the right to make decisions over their own bodies.


CARDONA: What this draft legal opinion did and will do is that it will mobilize and galvanize Democrats, Independent women, suburban women, men even; Latinos, African-Americans, everyone who believes that that right should be the right for women to make in the privacy of their own homes, with their families, with their doctors.

And so from a mobilization standpoint, I do think that it is something that Republicans are concerned about. They see how we are talking about this because the fact of the matter is, this decision, Pam, if it does happen, let's remember, it is still a draft decision, it will essentially take away a huge right that women had to have agency over their own bodies. We will become inferior citizens to men. We will become second class citizens in our own country.

I talk about my own daughter, my daughter, Maya Luna, 15 years old, and frankly, my son as well. And I shudder to think that they will grow up in a country where she does not have the right to make a decision over her own reproductive future. And my son, if he is ever in a situation, where he again with his wife or girlfriend would have to make a decision like that, that is out of both of their hands.

And so to me, it is this is going to be the focus of mobilization for Democrats because this takes for the first time, this takes away a right that women have had in this country for 50 years, based on medieval legal philosophy, a Neanderthal view of women from the standpoint of the Justices that are focused on this -- on the decision, and that I think is going to be a huge mobilizing factor for us.

STEWART: If I can say with all due respect to my dear friend, Maria, who I love. Look, Republicans are happy to talk about this. This is an issue that has galvanized Republicans for decades and this is not something that is off the table by any stretch of the imagination.

The only concern is moving into the General Election, we will talk about this, but the real issues that turn out voters, Independents, as well as Republicans are the pocketbook issues. We're going to talk about the economy, we're going to talk about jobs and crime and the border. Those issues that really turn out voters.

Look, this is really the will of the people and a poll show that they are, then great, put it in the hands of the people. Take this out of the hands of nine unelected Justices and put it in the hands of state legislators. That's what this democracy is all about. Democracy is best served and best reflective of the people if you put it in the hands of the people. That's why State Legislators are much better -- in a much better position to make decisions on this than members of the Senate.

CARDONA: So you know what's terrifying about what, Alice, is just saying? She is saying that this a decision that should be put in the hands of the people. And I agree, I think that we should have been focused on codifying Roe v. Wade for a very long time and also using this the way the right has for 50 years as a mobilization tool. We have been asleep at the switch on that. So, I hope that this is a huge wake-up call and I think that it will be.

But what Alice just said indicates to me the huge fear that so many that are looking at this decision or saying, wait a minute, they're not going to stop there, because this is under the guise of privacy and Alito and Coney Barrett and Kavanaugh and Gorsuch and I think, I'm missing.

BROWN: Kavanaugh?

CARDONA: No, I think I said it.

BROWN: You said it. Yes.

CARDONA: They are essentially saying that privacy -- that that kind of decision under the guise of privacy doesn't exist. So what about same sex marriage, right? That also was under the guise of privacy. What about the use of contraceptives? That also was under the guise of privacy.

So where is that going to go? Are Republicans going to say that all of those issues should also be put in the hands of the people? So then what is the Supreme Court there to do?

They're saying that this -- that they want a strict control -- a strict interpretation of the Constitution, a strict interpretation of the Constitution would not give Black people a definition of humanity, would not give women the right to vote.

So again, this is why this is so concerning, and this is what Democrats are going to continue to focus on for mobilization.

BROWN: And I also want to just take a step back to and again, everyone is so passionate about this and people are expressing it in different ways. And unfortunately, people -- some people are expressing it in really horrific ways that are unproductive to this conversation.

And you shared a tweet about some of those ways that you have been treated for sharing your opinions, Alice. You tweeted that there have been several -- look, we see right here, you said "Just a bit of the feedback I've received for standing up for my pro-life values edited for public consumption." And then you can see right there on the screen.

You know, I don't think that this is helpful for either side to be demonizing the other side for their closely held beliefs, their viewpoint, their philosophy on this. What has it been like for both of you?


STEWART: It been difficult. It has been hurtful, but I also truly believe this is the right position as a pro-life, social conservative that has been working on this for decades.

I've worked on five presidential campaigns, this has been a key issue the entire time. No guy sitting in his basement calling me all of these names is going to change my mind. No one sitting there behind a cat picture on Twitter is going to make me believe something different.

And I think the most important way we can have these conversations is to do so with respect and understanding that friends like Maria, we disagree on this issue, there are valid areas of concern. I don't believe we should have abortion at all, except in cases of rape incest and life of the mother.

There are so many nuances to this conversation. That's where we begin. Where do we agree on this issue and expand from that?

BROWN: And we agree that you shouldn't be hateful. Go ahead.

CARDONA: Oh, absolutely. None of that is okay. And I adore my friend, Alice. And sometimes I get hate for adoring my friend, Alice and gets it for adoring me, too.

BROWN: I am sure people are tweeting --

CARDONA: Exactly.

BROWN: People with the cat picture are tweeting right now. I get it.

CARDONA: And then every -- right, exactly. And every time I talk about this, I get called baby killer. I get called out all kinds of things, right, because of my belief. And I am a practicing Catholic woman who is going against the church on this because I believe that these are decisions that should be made between the woman, her family, her doctor, and if she is religious, her God.

And so that is going to be something that we are going to continue to talk about, because again, I believe that the majority of the American people are with us on this. I think it will be a huge step back for women's rights and for how women are treated in this country.

I guarantee you, Pam, if men were the ones who had the ability to have babies in this country, that there would be an abortion clinic on every corner of every street right next to the Starbucks. BROWN: All right, ladies, Alice and Maria, you really set the example

for how you can have a civil discussion on such an issue that you're so passionate about.

We'll be right back.



BROWN: The stock market looks to rebound this week after it settled at its lowest point of the year on Friday. The Dow fell for the sixth consecutive week. The S&P 500 and NASDAQ have fallen five weeks in a row.

CNN's Alison Kosik joins me now.

Alison, what should we be on the lookout for Monday?


So first of all, we're looking at futures, watching futures before the opening bell tomorrow and they're indicated for a sharply lower open. Keep in mind that we do have a long way to go before the opening bell, over 10 hours. A lot can change overnight, but that's the picture as it stands right now.

As for what are the drivers this week for Wall Street? I think the continued speculation of what the Fed's next move will be in regards to interest rate hikes. You know, what has been the focus and what will continue to be the focus for investors is the pace of these interest rate hikes and the size of the interest rate hikes.

We know that the Fed raised a key interest rate of half a percent last week, and you know Fed Chief Jay Powell, he took off the table an even bigger rate hike, meaning 75 basis points or three quarters of a percent.

But there is a lot of skepticism whether or not the Fed Chief can really stick to that because inflation is running so hot. We're seeing inflation at levels that we haven't seen since the 1980s and we are certainly feeling it when we go to the grocery store, or we go to fill up our tank at the gas station. We are seeing all of that inflation.

And so a lot of the volatility that we're seeing in the market is just a lot of nervousness about how the Fed is going to really fight inflation and get a handle on inflation. Will the Fed be too aggressive and raise rates to buy too much and cause the economy to go into a recession? That's the big worry for investors right now.

So they're really watching the Fed closely, which brings me to the second driver of the week and that is Wednesday. We're going to get a big inflation report called CPI, the Consumer Price Inflation Report, it is prices at the consumer level.

This is one of these kinds of reports that the Fed focuses on that influences their decision making in these rate hikes. So everyone is really going to be closely watching these inflation numbers from April.

If they come into hot, Pamela, then we could see this volatility really continue in the stock market. If they come in more moderate, because see a little stabilization in the stock market -- Pamela.

BROWN: All right, so you know, you have the Fed, raising interest rates in this week's jobs report, we're seeing the powers that be trying to fine tune how to tackle inflation. Is there anything else that can be done? Or should U.S. consumers just be prepared to bear, you know, get ready for some more pain for the rest of the year?

KOSIK: Yes, many analysts say yes, hunker down, get ready for inflation to last much longer than we could really expect. You know, it is really questionable whether the government can do much more than what is already being done.

I mean, the government is really limited.

I mean, you've got the Fed hiking rates, that's to tap the brakes on the economy. And, you know, a lot of this is already really baked into the system. You know, during the pandemic, we had all that stimulus into the economy. The Fed put all this liquidity into the economy as well. So all of that is baked in and all of that money, Pamela, has to just work its way out of the system.

BROWN: All right, Alison Kosik, thank you so much.

Tonight, on an all new "Searching for Italy," Stanley Tucci explores the food and culture of the Piedmont region.



STANLEY TUCCI, CNN HOST, "SEARCHING FOR ITALY": And if there's one dish that Valedosta's close neighbors are famous for --

(UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE speaking in foreign language.)

TUCCI: It's fondue.

On this side of the mountains, it is called fonduta. And over here, they make it a little differently.

(UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE speaking in foreign language.)


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The difference between for example Switzerland and France, they have fonduta with different cheese in front.

TUCCI: What do they use?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Maybe a bit of raclette.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Baronet, la regola (ph).

(UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE speaking in foreign language.)

TUCCI: Italian fontina cheese from cows fed on sweet grass high in these mountains make the fonduta so luscious, it doesn't need the white wine they add in France or Switzerland.


BROWN: Wow. Guaranteed this is going to make you hungry.

The all-new episode of "Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy" airs tonight at nine Eastern and Pacific. Only on CNN.

We'll be right back.