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Democrats Near Historic Win With Sweeping Climate, Tax And Health Bill; Pelosi's Taiwan Visit Stokes Chinese Anger Toward U.S.; Indiana Abortion Ban; Meijer: Dems Forfeit Moral High Ground By Backing Election Deniers; GOP's Liz Cheney Sits Down To Talk Trump, Pence, January 6th; The Economy, Abortion Rights And Midterm Elections. Aired 6-7p ET

Aired August 06, 2022 - 18:00   ET



PAMELA BROWN, CNN HOST: A final vote expected soon on a sweeping healthcare and climate bill as President Biden looks to score a major legislative win.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This bill is a game changer for working families and our economy.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): The one thing I can tell you about this bill, it will not lower inflation.

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): We are now one step closer to enacting this historic legislation into law.

BROWN: Indiana becoming the first state post Roe to pass a law banning nearly all abortions.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People are demanding that their voices be heard by this Legislature, to demand equal rights under the law.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Me and my sisters, we are not murderers. We just took control of our own bodies.

GREG TAYLOR (D), INDIANA STATE SENATOR: If you're pro-life, you can't be happy. If you're pro-choice, you can't be happy. All I know is people need to go out and vote in November.

BROWN: The fallout from U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan continues with China ramping up its military and diplomatic backlash.

ANTONY BLINKEN, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: There is no justification for this extreme, disproportionate, and escalatory military response.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Some sort of military escalation and the possibility of open conflict, a higher probability than it was just a few days ago.

BROWN: I'm Pamela Brown in Washington, you are in the CNN NEWSROOM. Right now, senators are voting on sweeping legislation that advances

several aspects of President Biden's agenda. The $430 billion package includes the country's largest ever investment in the fight against climate change, if it would also let Medicare negotiate drug prices and change how corporations are taxed.

CNN's Jessica Dean joins us now from Capitol Hill. So, bring us up to speed here, Jessica, what's happening?

JESSICA DEAN, CNN WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT Well, Pamela, after a long day of waiting, we are finally seeing some movement on the Senate floor on this particular package. So this first step that they need to take to begin this whole very complex process that they have to do to move this legislation through is happening as we speak, we are seeing this vote right now on the motion to proceed. That is step one.

Once that passes, it only needs a simple majority, all 50 Senate Democrats must vote yes, which they will. Once that happens, they can then move on to up to 20 hours of debate on either side. Now, leaders from both parties tell us they don't expect either side to take up that much time. So we should get a little bit of time back on that.

And then they go to what's known as a vote-a-rama, which kind of is a fun sounding name for something that is actually very long and quite tedious. It's an endless amount of amendments that they will vote on throughout the night. And frankly, we expect this to go on for hours and hours. No one really knows how long it can go on, but it could go very much into the early morning hours. So that's kind of the process that has to play out.

Now, again, we do expect this to ultimately pass. It just has to make its way through.

Let's listen to a Majority Leader Chuck Schumer earlier today.


SCHUMER: This is one of the most comprehensive and impactful bills Congress has seen in decades, for families struggling to pay the bills, for seniors struggling to pay for medication, for kids struggling with asthma. This bill is for them.


DEAN: And frankly, it was quite a surprise. About a week and a half ago when we learned that Senator Joe Manchin and Schumer had struck this deal to move forward and that it included these climate initiatives, these tax initiatives, previously Manchin had really only committed to some of the healthcare stuff, and that was about all we thought might be in a bill like this.

So we ultimately think it's going to pass, Pamela, then it would of course, go to the House. They're currently on recess. They're going to have to come back next week to finish this work up. Once it passes there, it would go to President Joe Biden -- Pam. BROWN: Thank you so much, Jessica. And once it passes, it will impact

a lot of people's lives in the United States. So, let's take a closer look at what is in the healthcare and climate change bill.

Now, we mentioned how it is the biggest climate investment in U.S. history with $369 billion to combat global warming, and that includes consumer tax credits on electric vehicles, rooftop solar panels, and energy efficient water heaters.

The goal is to reduce carbon emissions by 40 percent by 2030, but there are also billions in tax credits to fossil fuel companies to encourage them to invest in clean energy, and this is key, the bill actually supports it expanding investment in domestic oil and gas exploration on Federal lands and in offshore Federal waters.


BROWN: In fact, for the next decade, any new wind or solar energy project on Federal land could only be approved if a new lease is approved for oil and gas drilling as well.

Now, let's go to taxes here. The bill abandons tax increases opposed by Republicans including taxation of so-called carried interest, which affects many wealthy investors.

The bill also includes changes to healthcare, including allowing Medicare to negotiate the prices of certain costly medications. The bill would also extend Obamacare subsidies set to expire at the end of this year, those subsidies would be available until 2025.

Senator Bernie Sanders, an Independent who usually votes with the Democrats is reluctantly supporting the bill, but says the scaled back version falls short in helping working Americans.


SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT): We have legislation which unlike the original Build Back Better plan ignores the needs of the working families of our country and childcare, pre-K, the expansion of Medicare, affordable housing, home health care, higher education, and many, many other desperate needs.


BROWN: And House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is back in the U.S. this Saturday, but it appears her visit to Taiwan isn't being quickly forgotten or forgiven by China.

Taiwan says it is detecting multiple Chinese aircraft and naval vessels taking part in a fresh round of military drills around the self-governing island, an island, the Chinese government considers its own.

A National Security Council spokesperson told CNN minutes ago that China's recent military activities around Taiwan are a "significant escalation" in China's efforts to change the status quo. CNN's Blake Essig is in Taipei. So Blake, what more do we know about

this weekend's exercises?

BLAKE ESSIG, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Pamela, for the third day in a row, multiple Chinese military aircraft warships were spotted operating around the Taiwan Strait with some crossing the median line in what Taiwan's Ministry of Defense has described as a possible simulated attack against its Mainland.

While the international reaction including from some experts CNN has talked to have said that this feels very much like a dress rehearsal for potential war, here in Taiwan, people have been living under a constant threat of invasion from China for about 70-plus years. So although Taiwanese media is reporting on these drills, people seem to just be going about their daily lives.

The shopping district has been busy. And earlier tonight, there were long lines outside of restaurants. Now in Beijing, the propaganda surrounding these drills has been relentless in an effort to live up to the fiery rhetoric that we heard from Chinese government officials in the build up to Pelosi's tour of Asia, the underlining message is that time is on China's side in a fast modernizing military that the reunification with Taiwan is not a matter of if, but when.

So in response to this unfolding crisis around Taiwan, which Beijing blames on the United States, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken weighed in on Beijing's recent attempts to change the status quo on the Taiwan's -- or excuse me around the Taiwan Strait and called its decision to suspend cooperation with the U.S. on a number of issues including climate talks, irresponsible and potentially dangerous.

And while the U.S. Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi's tour of Asia wrapped up yesterday, and she is now back in the United States, the fallout from her surprise stop here in Taiwan continues to be felt -- Pamela.

BROWN: All right, Blake Essig in Taipei, thank you.

And now, I want to bring in CNN global affairs analyst, Susan Glasser. She is also a staff writer at "The New Yorker."

So Susan, a lot of foreign policy challenges for the Biden administration right now. Let's pick up where Blake left off there. Let's pick up with Taiwan.

China suspended cooperation with the U.S. on a range of issues including climate talks. Let's listen to what John Kirby had to say.


REAR ADMIRAL JOHN KIRBY (RET.), NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL COORDINATOR FOR STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS: China has chosen to overreact and use the Speaker's visit as a pretext to increase provocative military activity in and around the Taiwan Strait. We anticipated that China might take steps like this. We also expect that these actions will continue. (END VIDEO CLIP)

BROWN: Well, Susan, how should the Biden administration respond?

SUSAN GLASSER, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Well, look, I think that, you know, even an anticipated action, and I do think that, you know, John Kirby, of course, is correct. This was definitely anticipated, these exercises that China is now mounting, that you know, really amount in some ways to an escalation in and of themselves.

But just because you've anticipated something doesn't mean there's an obvious thing.

One of the greatest worries that I hear over and over again in Washington today is the risk that we are marching inexorably down a path of escalation and tit-for-tat confrontations that lead to a very threatening situation for Taiwan.


GLASSER: You know if China, under its leadership of Xi Jinping has determined that it is going to provoke a final confrontation of some sort in the effort to reunite Taiwan with the rest of China, you know, that might be an inexorable path that we're headed toward. The question is when and what exactly is the United States prepared to do about it? None of which have been answered by a decade's long policy of strategic ambiguity, which I don't think the Biden administration wants to get rid of just yet.

BROWN: Right. And you had an official of the Chinese Embassy in DC, saying, look, Taiwan is what would set off a war between the U.S. and China. I mean, you know, you're hearing it from officials all the way around, just how concerning this moment could be, and in your view, how dangerous is this moment?

GLASSER: Look, first of all, there's the risk of an unintended action in the middle of these military exercises that could lead to a bigger confrontation. That's literally a scenario that's happened before in one of the several previous crises over the Taiwan Strait.

So first of all, that's something that can happen, right? When you have this large scale military exercise, there could be the risk of, you know, a missile that goes awry or something like that. Number one, that's something to worry about.

Number two, China, by putting more and more pressure on Taiwan by putting, you know, as "The Times" put it the other day, the squeeze play on, again, the risks of confrontation, and then there's also the politics involved in this.

Even authoritarian countries like the Chinese -- China under the Chinese Communist Party have politics, Xi Jinping is looking ahead at a crucial party conference in November. He is determined, you know, in his rhetoric, as your correspondent noted, this is all over the airwaves in China, even if it's not in Taiwan. It's aimed at shoring up his credentials as a nationalist who wishes to bring back what he considers to be, you know, lost territory.

BROWN: Before we let you go. I want to talk about Russia quickly, because you have the Brittney Griner case there. She was sentenced to nine years in a Russian penal colony for less than one gram of CBD oil.

And now Russia says, it wants to talk about a deal to release Griner and Paul Whelan, another American. Do you see a swap happening anytime soon?

GLASSER: Well, I think you know, you wouldn't want to get falsely optimistic. There certainly is precedent for this kind of swap. So, that is encouraging in the sense that it's definitely, there's a playbook, if you will, for this.

But Russia is negotiating from a position of strength because they have these prisoners, and I think that again, they're looking to get as much as they possibly can get. You know, the United States has already proposed a very unequal trade.

I should point out, Viktor Bout, the Russian arms dealer is a massive international criminal, and the United States has already proposed to Russia to swap him for Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan who have done nothing in any way comparable.

So, you know, again, I just -- I would say Russia may be taking its time about this. There is the possibility of it happening. But remember, this is you know, they have the power because they have the people in their control right now.

BROWN: Yes. That's the sad reality for these two Americans.

Susan Glasser, thank you so much.

And when we come back on this Saturday night, Indiana becomes the first state after Roe v. Wade is overturned, to ban nearly all abortions.

And actor, Anne Heche, lucky to be alive according to one CNN source after a fiery car crash in Los Angeles.

You're in the CNN NEWSROOM.



BROWN: The latest flashpoint in America's abortion debate: Indiana. Lawmakers there enacted a near total ban late last night, making it the first state to pass such a law since the Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade.

CNN's Carlos Suarez reports.


protesters, lawmakers in Indiana passed a bill late Friday night that would ban most abortions, the first State to pass such a restrictive law since Roe vs. Wade was overturned this summer.

The move drew outrage from Democrats and some Republicans who felt the measure went too far and others who felt it did not.

TAYLOR: If you're pro-choice, you can't be happy. I don't know who left here happy. All I know is, people need to go out and vote in November.

ELIZABETH ROWRAY (R), INDIANA STATE HOUSE: I held my pro-choice views until the first ultrasound that I had of my very planned first daughter. And in that instance, when I saw her, I couldn't believe if I ever felt like it would be okay to kill that child. I switched then that instance.

SUAREZ (voice over): The bill was signed into law by the Governor minutes after the vote. The law which goes into effect on September 15th provides exceptions for when the life of the mother is at risk and for fatal fetal anomalies up to 20 weeks post fertilization. It also allows exceptions for some abortions if the pregnancy was a result of rape or incest.

The vote came days after voters in Kansas overwhelmingly rejected an effort to remove abortion protections from their State Constitution. On Saturday, the White House blasted the vote in Indiana: "Yesterday's vote which institutes in your total ban in Indiana should be a signal to Americans across the country to make their voices heard. Congress should also act immediately to pass a law restoring the protections or Roe -- the only way to secure a woman's right to choose nationally."

Caitlin Barnard, the Indiana OB-GYN who provided abortion services for a 10-year-old Ohio rape victim who crossed state lines in June says she worries that even with exceptions, doctors fear they could be prosecuted for providing an emergency procedure to pregnant women.


DR. CAITLIN BARNARD, INDIANA OB-GYN: You know how to save their lives and yet you're wondering, well, who's going to -- who do I have to check with? Who's going to second guess me?

Do I call my lawyer? Do I call the county prosecutor? You know, is this going to go to the State Attorney General, which we know can be incredibly dangerous for physicians as I've experienced.


SUAREZ (on camera): And already, the Indiana business community is weighing in on the new law. Pharmaceutical giant, Eli Lilly, which employs about 3,500 workers in the state says they are going to start looking for talent elsewhere. This, as the company announced that it is going to expand its healthcare coverage for workers who might seek an abortion out of state -- Pamela. BROWN: Carlos Suarez, thank you so much. Carlos, we appreciate it.

And you're in the CNN NEWSROOM on this Saturday.

Big primary wins this week for Republicans who still push the election lie.

In Arizona and Michigan, I'll ask elections expert, David Becker about the warning signs he sees for our democracy after those results -- next.



BROWN: This week, voters in Michigan and Arizona were among those casting ballots in primary elections and results in both States brought a resounding endorsement of former President Donald Trump election fraud lies.

Among them, gubernatorial hopeful, Kari Lake in Arizona and congressional candidate, John Gibbs in Michigan. Gibbs actually beat a Republican incumbent who voted to impeach the former President.

I want to bring in David Becker. He is Executive Director of the nonpartisan center for election innovation and research. So David, how much does a string of election denying candidates winning races concern you?

DAVID BECKER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NONPARTISAN CENTER FOR ELECTION INNOVATION AND RESEARCH: What concerns me a great deal, we have people who have been running on the idea that elections aren't working, delegitimizing elections in the United States, that is very harmful for democracy. It's almost a feature of their campaigns, not a flaw of it and they seem to take the positions that any election in which their party or they themselves don't win is insecure.

But an election in which they win is fine, regardless of the fact that they've known the processes and the laws and the rules that were in place well before the election, and they just refuse to accept those rules after an election in which they've lost.

If they win office, it can be very, very damaging for our democracy. We could see a lot of chaos and confusion in the post-election period, where they breed almost the idea that political violence can solve things. They can also really undermine the efforts of local election officials all around the country who are working hard to provide enough for voters to express their voice in our democracy. So I'm very concerned.

BROWN: You could also make the argument though, David, if they lose, it could be problematic, if they lose in November, because we could see a much worse version of what we saw for 2020. Right?

BECKER: That's exactly right, Pamela. You've got a situation where if election deniers who undermine democracy win, that is very bad for our democracy. But if they lose, we could see them continue to undermine the integrity of our elections, claiming that elections were stolen falsely and instead of having all of those lies be focused on a single day, January 6th, in single place, Washington, DC, we could see those lies focused and fomenting violence in dozens of places on dozens of dates.

I'm very worried about the prospect for political violence in the aftermath of the November 2022 election. I hate to be so pessimistic about this, but given that so many have been actively grifting and selling the lies about elections being stolen, they are heavily invested and incentivized to continue those lies if the voters do not select them to win.

BROWN: Yes, I mean, you have a reason to be pessimistic. It is sobering. I want to ask you, though, about the Democrats who are actually helping to boost the profile of some of these fringe candidates. We saw it in Michigan, when they ran more than $300,000.00 worth of ads to help boost election denier, John Gibbs over Peter Meijer, a Congressman who voted for Trump's impeachment. Here's what Congressman Meijer had to say about it.


REP. PETER MEIJER (R-MI): I'm not here to whine about the DCCC coming in and meddling. But just to point out that any party that pretends to have a set of principles, any party that pretends to have a set of values and that comes in and boosts exactly the same type of candidate that they claim is a fear to democracy -- a threat to democracy don't expect to be able to hold on to that sense of self-righteousness and sanctimony.


BROWN: What do you say to that? How do tactics like this impact elections?

BECKER: Well, I think one of the things we have to realize is we are not in a normal moment in American history -- in American political history. This is not a time when you can play the typical games of politics back and forth and think you won't get burned.

We are living in a time where we need people of integrity on both sides of the aisle. We need people who will stand up for democratic principles, for the people who run elections, for election officials all over the country. There are people in the Republican Party, as well as the Democratic Party that do that.


And it is disturbing to me that politicians in trying to win a race might seek to elevate election deniers because they might be perceived to be the weaker candidate. What we know is even if that political calculation is right, some of these individuals might still win and that's a big loss for democracy, little D democracy, not for Democrats or Republicans, but for all of us as citizens of the United States of America. BROWN: Yes. Earlier in the conversation, you mentioned political

violence and I'm curious what you think about violence against election workers or the threat of that. You helped create a legal defense fund for election workers and now we've learned that the FBI is having problems processing the vast number of reports of violent threats and harassment directed towards election workers. Here's what an elections official told the Senate Judiciary Committee this week.


AMY COHEN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF STATE ELECTION DIRECTORS: Until recently, this was not a field you went into thinking it could cost you your life, and now that it is, we need a whole-of- government response to ensure the safety of our community.

BROWN: What do you say to that?

BECKER: Yes, that's absolutely right. I mean, these people are public servants. They don't get famous or rich for doing what they're doing. They do it because they have found a calling to give voice to the voters of the United States of America.

And for the past two years, they have been under siege. I talked to election officials all over the country. I've been going to their conferences. It is not unusual for election officials to break down in tears when they consider the stress, the pressures, the harassment they faced, the ongoing threats, which are continuing to this day and in some ways even ramping up. This is affecting Republicans at least as much as Democrats, perhaps even more so.

The professionals that we rely upon to facilitate our democracy are under siege and we need to do everything we can to ensure that they feel safe in their jobs and they are valued in their jobs. They just pulled off somehow the highest turnout in American history in the middle of a global pandemic and 2020. And instead of throwing them a parade and thanking them for their efforts, they find themselves under constant threats and harassment.

BROWN: It is just so, so sad and there are no words for that. As you said, they are public servants. They don't deserve that. David Becker, thank you.

And an exclusive CNN interview, Representative Liz Cheney says you have to question if the U.S. is 'a nation of laws if the Justice Department fails to prosecute former President Trump for his role in the insurrection', and that's not all. We'll be right back with more.



BROWN: The Republican Vice Chair of the January 6 Committee has strong feelings about whether former President Trump should be prosecuted for his role in the insurrection. Congresswoman Liz Cheney sat down with CNN's Kasie Hunt and talked about where the investigation is going and whether Trump should be allowed to run again in 2024. (BEGIN VIDEO TAPE)

KASIE HUNT, CNN ANCHOR AND CHIEF NATIONAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Do you think that the Biden Justice Department is going to stop him from becoming president again?

REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): I think that the Justice Department is going to follow the facts and the evidence. I think that they clearly seen significant activity in terms of the individuals that they now have testifying in front of the grand jury in D.C. and I think they're taking their obligation seriously.

I think we've certainly seen in our hearings, when you have the former attorney general, former White House counsel, former acting attorney general, former deputy attorney general, when you have individuals who served Donald Trump, who were nominated by him and who served at the highest levels, who have testified in front of the Committee, and made clear, for example, as did Pat Cipollone, that President Trump didn't want people to leave the Capitol.

Now, Mr. Cipollone made that point trying to protect executive privilege, but I don't think anybody had any doubt what he was saying. And so, I think the Justice Department is, from what I can tell from the outside committed to following the facts and following the evidence, and they're taking it seriously.

HUNT: Some have expressed concern that prosecuting former President Trump would turn him into a martyr and potentially add to his political strength with a base that follows him pretty rapidly. Do you share that concern? Do you have any concern that a prosecution would strengthen Donald Trump's political hands?

CHENEY: I don't think that it's appropriate to think about it that way because the question for us is: "Are we a nation of laws? Are we a country where no one is above the law? And what do the facts and the evidence show?" And certainly I've been very clear, I think he's guilty of the most serious dereliction of duty of any president in our nation's history. You've had a federal judge in California say that it's more likely than not that he and John Eastman committed two crimes.

So I think that we're going to continue to follow the facts. I think the Department of Justice will do that. But they have to make decisions about prosecution, understanding what it means if the facts and the evidence are there, and they decide not to prosecute, how do we then call ourselves a nation of laws, I think that's a very serious, serious balancing.

HUNT: It sounds like you think that the evidence is there, and that if they don't follow that evidence, that's a dereliction of duty on their part?

CHENEY: Well, the Committee has been, I think, very thorough in laying out much of what we know, there's much more that we have not yet shared in hearings, and that we anticipate we will share in the fall. But - and we will also make decisions about criminal referrals and ultimately, the decision about prosecution is up to the Justice Department. But I would anticipate that the Committee will have an opinion on that.

HUNT: CNN is reporting that the Pentagon texts from January 6 are missing.


This is of course, after the Department of Homeland Security and the Secret Service seem to have lost text. Do you think there was malicious intent behind the Pentagon's deletion of texts related to that day?

CHENEY: I don't know that that that's the case. I haven't seen evidence of malicious intent. I do think, though, that it's concerning that you have text messages, apparently, and this is based on the news reporting, but text messages apparently of some of the senior officials, people like Kash Patel, apparently not available.

Now, certainly as a committee, we'll get to the bottom of that. We've been working with Secret Service and the situation has been reported where text messages are not available or were erased off of phones. But we've received hundreds of thousands of documents from the Secret Service and significant information from them that the Committee is going through and will use in our investigation and as we conduct interviews of additional Secret Service agents.

HUNT: How much would you say you have learned that was unexpected? I mean you obviously have a lot more information than the general public does in your head about what happened that day. But when you started these hearings, earlier this year, did you have any idea how much you would know by this point?

CHENEY: It's been more information and a more sophisticated and broader reaching effort than I understood coming into it. I think all of us on the Committee have had that same reaction, which is that there's so much - there was so much more that was happening in multiple different areas, whether it was the pressure on state officials or the pressure on the Justice Department or the attempt to correctly pressure the vice president himself.

So I think that we've just - there's the volume of information has been more than I expected, and certainly, it obviously came into this very concern and the information itself has not lessened my concern at all.

HUNT: Are you in contact with the former vice president, Mike Pence, as you're learning this new information?

CHENEY: No, we've had discussions with his counsel, obviously about his interactions with the Committee, but not with him personally.

HUNT: What's your assessment of how he's handling potentially running for president? Because he's out there kind of opposing the former president, but unlike you, he's not out there criticizing former President Trump. CHENEY: What I would say is that Vice President Pence was a hero on

January 6 and that it's very clear that there was tremendous pressure from a number of different places on him and he did his duty and he didn't succumb to that pressure. And if he had succumbed to that pressure, things would have been very different.

And so, I think that we owe him gratitude for how he conducted himself and for his refusal to do what Donald Trump wanted him to do, which would have been illegal and unconstitutional.

HUNT: Do you think he'd be an ally in the fight to keep Trump out of the Oval Office?

CHENEY: Let me just leave it where I did. I think that his actions on January 6, are ones for which the nation should be grateful.

HUNT: There's been a lot of speculation about how the Committee is or isn't making an impact with the American people, especially when it comes to this question of whether Donald Trump becomes the Republican nominee and eventually, potentially President of the United States again. Do you think the Committee's work is moving the needle politically?

CHENEY: I don't - again, I don't think about it that way. I think about it more and because I think it's important that the Committee's work, not be viewed through a political lens and that's not how I think about that. I think about it in terms of whether or not we're reaching people who understand how serious the threat was, and continues to be. And I think in that regard, we have done a job that I'm proud of.

HUNT: Do you think there are enough people out there in the country who share these concerns that you have, and that many people who are also at the Capitol on that day have? Are there enough Americans out there to move the needle?

CHENEY: I think that there - the vast majority of Americans understand how important it is that we have peaceful transitions of power. And that at the - at - sort of at the heart of who we are as Americans, and at the heart of our republic is a peaceful transition of power. And no matter what your party affiliation is, you have to have a president who will guarantee that and Donald Trump did not.


And so, I do think that as more and more facts become known people, people are paying attention and understanding how serious the threat is.


BROWN: And next hour we'll hear what Rep. Cheney says about her battle to stay in Congress.

Well, a key part of the Biden agenda looks likely to pass the Senate soon. Will it give Democrats a midterm boost? Harry Enten here with me in D.C. in the flesh. This is actually the first time I've ever met Harry in-person, truly.


BROWN: All right. He's here with me at the magic wall to run the numbers. We'll be right back after this break. Stay with us.



BROWN: Well, this week's strong economic news and the fight over abortion rights could be boosting Democrats' chances in this year's midterm elections. CNN Senior Data Reporter Harry Enten joins us here in the D.C. studio to run the numbers. All right. Harry, welcome to the show. Welcome to the set. Run the numbers for us when it comes to the economy.

ENTEN: Yes. So I mean, look, last week we spoke about bad economic news. This week, we're going to go the other direction speak about the good economic news that came out. Yes, inflation is bad. But look at that unemployment rate, just 3.5 percent. That's tied for the best since 1969. How about gas prices, right? Last night driving that car, I went to go fill up, a little bit less, right, because gas price is down 18 percent since the June peak. And how about that S&P 500, my 401(k), god bless it, up about 8 percent in the last month.

So I mean, overall, look, inflation is bad, but we've got some pretty good indicators there as well.

BROWN: God bless it. I hope it still keeps going up.

ENTEN: Please. Please.

BROWN: When it comes to 401(k), gas prices still going down.


BROWN: That's what we hope.

So just a few months ago, Republicans were heavily favored to take control of the House of Representatives. But you have some data showing things may have changed.

ENTEN: There'd been a lot of things in the news. We'll get to abortion a little bit, the economy as well. We kind of have these mixed signals.


ENTEN: And take a look here at the choice for Congress, maybe these are voters reacting to some of this because take a look - look, back on May 6, right, the GOP on the generic congressional ballot had a plus 2.9 percentage point lead. Then in June 6, look at that, plus 2.5, July 6, GOP plus about two and now we're about even. And keep in mind, of course, that Dobbs leak occurred on May 3rd. So the fact of the matter is, we have seen the Democrats been slowly

but surely gaining this race for Congress and now we have a dead even race going on.

BROWN: That's - we've had you on many times. And usually it's good news for the Republicans when it comes to the midterms.


BROWN: Now it seems to be getting better for the Democrats--

ENTEN: I just run the numbers.

BROWN: You just run - that's all you do, just look at the numbers, that's all we're looking at here, folks. Let's talk about the numbers in Kansas. Turnout is key, as we know, how much of the abortion rights battle in Kansas affect turnout?

ENTEN: Midterms are all about turnout, turnout, turnout, turnout. Take a look at the partisan primary turnout in 2022 primaries as compared to 2018. If you look in Kansas, look at this in that gubernatorial race, look at the Democratic turnout, up 80 percent, 80 percent. In all other states, it's been down 9 percent, so something clearly different.

On the Republican side, yes, the Republican turnout up 47 percent and that's more than the 19 percent that we've seen nationwide. But that differential on the Democratic side to me is a real indication that abortion really could potentially drive Democratic turnout this fall. I think it's going to be very interesting to see Democratic candidates for governor, for Senate, for House hit on the abortion issue, because to me, it seems like it could be a political winner for them.

BROWN: All right. Let's talk about election denial and how much of a driver that's going to be. I mean, when it comes to Donald Trump, obviously, he wasn't on the ballots in this week's primaries, but he did score some victories especially with that message.

ENTEN: Yes. I think that's absolutely right. So you hit on this earlier in the show, but let's go over it again. Trump back candidates winning this week. Arizona governor, Arizona, United States Senate, Arizona Attorney General, Arizona Secretary of State, Michigan Governor, Michigan, the U.S. third congressional district, right, the only contest that Trump actually won this week was in Washington's fourth district where Dan Newhouse was able to get by on that top two primary and he, of course, voted for impeachment.

But overall, the fact is Trump-backed candidates won and I think there's this idea that Trump's getting weaker within the Republican Party. But Trump - keep in mind, Trump remains 25 points ahead of his nearest 2024 competitor. So Trump is very strong even if he's in a weaker position than he once was.

BROWN: And he just - there was that straw poll at CPAC.

ENTEN: Yes. BROWN: He just got number one there, right?

ENTEN: Number one. He always wins those straw polls.

BROWN: He does.

ENTEN: And he won yet again.

BROWN: And they're not necessarily emblematic of everything with the Republican Party, but it is worth noting. All right. We always like to end on a fun note.


BROWN: Talk about this upcoming NFL season and what you're most excited about.

ENTEN: I must admit, I'm very excited, given who your mom was to be talking about the NFL. It's just like a very cool--

BROWN: For those that don't know, my mom used to be a sportscaster.

ENTEN: Oh, a very famous sportscaster and a trailblazer, so it's a true honor. The chance of winning the Super Bowl, my Buffalo Bills, this could be our year. We've never done it, but look at that. We are at the top of the pack at 6.9 percent with a plurality leader. That's better than being nothing but the fact is bleeding as a Buffalo Bills fan, I used to have a joke that the Bills hadn't made the playoffs since before Bar Mitzvah. They've not only made the playoffs, maybe this year, they might actually be able to win the Super Bowl.

BROWN: Wow. Wolf Blitzer must be so pumped about this too.

ENTEN: I think Wolf and I will be hanging out and certainly having our own little parties of the Bills ever managed to do this because it will be a true sign that maybe there's something from above looking down on me and trying to shine a nice bright light.

BROWN: We shall see. Hopefully that means we'll be back in D.C. more ...

ENTEN: I'd love it.

BROWN: ... watching games with Wolf.



BROWN: All right. It's great to have you here, Harry.

ENTEN: Thank you.

BROWN: And be sure to check out Harry Enten's podcast Margins of Error. You can find it on your favorite podcast app or at And you are in the CNN NEWSROOM. Indiana moves to ban nearly all

abortions. Coming up, I'll talk to one state lawmaker who revealed to her colleagues that she wants grappled with the decision of whether to get an abortion.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I had the choice and that made all the difference in how I felt about the fetus that I was growing.


BROWN: First, this weekend, a new episode of Patagonia: Life on the Edge of the World takes you to Patagonia's ancient woodlands. Tune in tomorrow night at 9 p.m. Eastern.