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Indiana Passes Near-Total Abortion Ban Post-Roe; Chinese Embassy Official Warns Of "War" With U.S. Over Taiwan; Interview With Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL); Towns In Eastern Kentucky Buried In A Foot Of Mud; "Alarming" New Shelling Reported At Ukrainian Nuclear Plant; Democrats Helping Trump-Backed Candidates In Primaries; How Climate Change Could Turn The Temperature Up On Your Town. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired August 06, 2022 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
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PAMELA BROWN, CNN HOST (voice-over): A final vote expected soon on a sweeping health care and climate bill as President Biden looks to score a major legislative win.
JOE BIDEN, 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're 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.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 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, SECRETARY OF STATE: There's 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.
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BROWN: I'm Pamela Brown in Washington. You are live in the CNN NEWSROOM.
And we begin tonight this hour on the battle over abortion. Last night, Indiana lawmakers passed a near-total ban on the procedure, and the state's Republican governor signed it into law a short time later.
That makes Indiana the first in the country to pass such a measure since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. And it allows for some exceptions.
But opponents, including the White House, are slamming it as another step towards revoking women's reproductive rights.
CNN's Carlos Suarez has the latest.
CARLOS SUAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Over the chants of 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 v. 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.
STATE SEN. GREG TAYLOR (D-IN): If you're pro-choice, you can't be happy. All I know is people need to go vote in November.
STATE REP. ELIZABETH ROWRAY (R-IN): I held my pro-choice views until the first ultrasound I had of my planned first child. And in that instance, when I saw her heartbeat, I couldn't believe that I ever felt like it would be OK to kill that child. I switched then, that instant.
SUAREZ: The bill was signed into law minutes after the vote. The law, which goes into effect on September 15th, provides exceptions when the mother's life 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 the 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. Quote:
"Yesterday's vote, which institutes a near-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 of Roe, the only way to secure a woman's right to choose nationally."
Caitlin Bernard, 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, even with exceptions, doctors fear they could be prosecuted for providing an emergency procedure to pregnant woman.
DR. CAITLIN BERNARD, 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: Already, the Indiana business community is weighing in.
Pharmaceutical giant, Eli Lilly, which employs about 10,500 workers in the state, say they plan for looking for talent elsewhere, even as the company seeks health care coverage for workers who might reproductive services out-of-state Pamela?
BROWN: Carlos, thank you so much.
And new U.S. outrage tonight over China apparently upping its military presence around the Taiwan Strait. Taiwan says 14 vessels and 20 planes operated by the Chinese military were spotted on Saturday. It is now Sunday morning there.
And in this country, a national Security Council spokesperson tells CNN this evening that China's military activities are a, quote, "significant escalation," warning they are, quote, "provocative, irresponsible and raise the risk of miscalculation."
China appeared to be lashing out over House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan this week, a trip that President Biden discouraged, but Republicans like Senator Mitch McConnell defended.
CNN's Blake Essig is in Taipei with a look at the tensions.
BLAKE ESSIG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Pamela, for the third day in a row, multiple Chinese military aircraft and ships were spotted operating in the Taiwan Strait with some crossing the median line and what Taiwan's defense has described as a possible simulated attack against its mainland.
The international reaction, including from some experts CNN has talked to, have said this feels very much like a dress rehearsal for a potential war.
Here in Taiwan people have been living under a constant threat from China for the past roughly seven decades.
So although Taiwanese media is reporting on these drills people seem to be going about their daily lives. Earlier tonight, there were long lines outside of restaurants.
In Beijing the propaganda surrounding these drills has been relentless, in an effort to live up to the fiery rhetoric we heard from Chinese government officials in the build up to Pelosi's tour in Asia.
And the underlying message that time is on China's side with its fast- moving military. And that reunification with Taiwan is not a matter of if but when.
Now in response to the crisis unfolding 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 in the Taiwan Strait.
And called its decision to suspend cooperation on a number of issues, including climate talks, irresponsible and potentially dangerous.
While U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's tour of Asia wrapped up yesterday and she's now back in the United States, the fallout from her surprise stop here in Taiwan continues to be felt -- Pamela?
BROWN: And our thanks to Blake Essig in Taipei.
Democratic Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi went on that Taiwan visit with Speaker Pelosi. He joins us tonight.
Hi, Congressman. Welcome to the show.
You're well aware of the controversies surrounding this trip. The head of your party, the president of the United States, was not thrilled. What was accomplished?
REP. RAJA KRISHNAMOORTHI (D-IL): I think a couple things. One, especially in light of what we've seen in Ukraine, it's so important for us to shore up our alliances with our partners and friends in that part of the world where China has been throwing its elbows militarily long before we visited Taiwan, and it continues today.
And secondly, we also want to shore up our economic partnership with these folks.
We talked a lot about the Chips and Science Act, which we passed last week. In light of that and, in part, due to that -- for instance, Taiwan is investing $25 billion in American manufacturing facilities for semiconductor manufacturing.
So that is really important as well because they are looking to increasingly move their investments from the Peoples of Republic of China to places like the United States. And we want to be there to encourage that.
BROWN: But it came with risks, right? I mean, since the visit, China has escalated military intimidation against Taiwan by firing multiple missiles. You know, lots of warnings. You're hearing it also concern from the U.S. side as well.
Were the benefits you laid out of this trip really worth the -- the risk to Taiwan and the United States here and the consequences?
KRISHNAMOORTHI: Absolutely, 100 percent. If the cost of avoiding those risks is ceding control of Taiwan or even ceding control of our travel schedule to the Chinese Communist Party, we're not going to pay that price.
Unfortunately, the only thing the folks who run the Chinese Communist Party respect is strength. We have to show strength in order to keep peace and stunt in that stability in that region.
BROWN: Let me ask you this because it leaked out as someplace Nancy Pelosi and the delegation as someplace Nancy Pelosi and the delegation were going to go.
If it had not leaked out, would you have gone?: Because it was the public sphere you had to go then because it didn't look like the Chinese leader was dictating your travel schedule.
KRISHNAMOORTHI: We were going to go regardless. This was planned before but, unfortunately, Speaker Pelosi, myself and others, came down with COVID, so we are unable to go down before.
At the end of the day, we need to be there meeting with our partners and allies who feel tremendous kind of almost insecurity about Chinese aggression.
And so we have to make sure that we do everything we can to restore their confidence that we are there with them, and so we are going to do that.
BROWN: So I want to get to domestic affairs in a moment, but one more question on this point of Taiwan.
The U.S. has occupied sort of an awkward middle position when it comes to Taiwan but still holding the line that, look, we have a One China policy.
Does this trip create the perception at the very least of full-fledged support of Taiwanese independence, a perception of a change in policy?
KRISHNAMOORTHI: I don't believe so. I believe that we basically reaffirmed our six assurances, our joint communiques to the Chinese government, the PRC, as well as what is obligated under the Taiwan Relations Act.
But one very important part of the Taiwan Relations Act is affirming and supporting Taiwan's right to defend itself.
And we're going to continue to do that, even at the same time that we're trying to make sure that there's peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.
BROWN: All right, I want to turn back home here.
You tweeted this week, quote, "This is how prevalent the Big Lie is in Republican politics. Arizona will have a full slate of election deniers on the ballot in November."
But at the same time, Democrats are throwing their weight behind some pretty extreme candidates in GOP primaries. Is this strategy too risky?
KRISHNAMOORTHI: I think that, unfortunately, these are the folks that the Republican Party in a lot of these states are electing, and I think that --
BROWN: But Democrats are helping to raise awareness of them and putting money in their coffers in some of these places.
BROWN: -- spent $300,000 in Michigan for Gibbs, and Peter Meijer won.
KRISHNAMOORTHI: At the end of the day, I think the voters of the Republican Party have to decide who their nominees are. And any efforts to clarify what some of these folks positions are, you know, makes it more transparent about what their choices are.
All that being said, I think that even other people who are not necessarily election deniers are maintaining very extreme views whether it's regard to reproductive health care.
We saw what happened in Indiana with their near-total abortion ban, or their extreme views to basically denying there's any need for common sense gun regulation.
So I think those are really going to be front and center on the election ballot in November.
BROWN: OK. Thank you so much.
And I'm distracted by what I think is a toddler or your child behind you. Very cute. That's the reality of doing live from home.
KRISHNAMOORTHI: Thank you.
BROWN: Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, thank you very much.
Deadly violence this evening in northern Gaza.
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BROWN: That's the scene our cameras captured as rockets were fired from Gaza toward Israel.
The Palestinian Health Ministry spokesman says an explosion tonight in Gaza killed seven people, including four children, but the cause of the explosion is in dispute. That Palestinian spokesman blames an Israeli air strike.
But Israeli officials said his country hadn't been attacking the area at the time of the blast. And now the Israeli army says the explosion came from a failed rocket launch by Islamic Jihad.
Up next on this Saturday evening, President Biden and the Democrats hoping for a major win with the final vote expected on a sweeping health care and climate bill.
Also ahead for you tonight, hundreds of Death Valley tourists stranded as record rainfall triggers flash flooding.
You're in the CNN NEWSROOM.
BROWN: Happening now, Vice President Harris just broke a 50-50 Senate tie to open up debate on Democrat's sweeping health care, climate change and tax bill. It could last up to 20 hours.
And the bill includes the country's largest ever investment to combat climate change. It earmarks $369 billion to cut carbon emissions by 40 percent by 2030.
Separately, Medicare would be allowed to negotiate some prescription drug prices and cap out out-of-pocket expenses. Affordable Care Act subsidies would also be extended for another three years.
So how is Congress planning to pay for all of this? Well, the bill includes a new 15 percent minimum corporate tax on the largest U.S. companies along with tougher IRS enforcement.
The White House is condemning the abortion ban signed into law late last night in Indiana. And that makes it the first state to pass new abortion restrictions since Roe v. Wade was overturned.
The law, which takes effect in nine days, will provide exceptions if the mother's life is at risk and for fatal fetal anomalies. It also allows for some exceptions in the case of rape or incest.
Joining us now is CNN senior political analyst, Ron Brownstein. So, Ron, for years, polls have shown a majority of Americans support
Roe v. Wade. Are Republicans making a mistake come November by implementing bans and restrictions at the state level?
RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: They are taking an enormous gamble. I mean, we are on a trajectory where virtually every state where Republicans have unified control of government is going to restrict or ban abortion within a reasonably short time frame.
And there are two kind of broader implications that flow out of that.
One is that these states who are banning abortions, almost all of them rank near the bottom on every measure of well-being for children and families, whether it's low-rate births or poverty to access to childcare, there could be hundreds of thousands of additional births per year.
What's happening on abortion is only one front on a much broader offensive.
Whether we're talking about voting rights, book bans, LGBTQ rights, we're seeing on effort across the states to roll back the revolution in the past six decades.
In which Congress and the courts have generally expanded the rights guaranteed nationally, no matter where you live, in an effort to kind of return us in a pre-'60s world where your basic rights depended much more on your zip code.
And that's what's at stake in these state elections that are continuing in November and beyond.
BROWN: Right. And we look at November also thinking about the Democrats, right?
It has been a great week for the Biden administration on most accounts, right? Gas prices going down, a great jobs report, now the sweeping health care, climate change and tax bill poised to pass the Senate.
So what does that mean for Democrats' mid-term chances?
BROWNSTEIN: The history I think is pretty clear that big legislative achievements can be important by the time you're running for re- election as the president. But historically, they haven't had a huge impact on the mid-term.
Republicans lost seats after the Reagan tax cuts in '81 and after the Trump tax cuts in 2017.
Democrats obviously lost a lot of seats in the House after the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010.
And maybe the most striking example is that after the '65, '66 Congress, probably the most productive ever in American history, Democrats lost 45 seats in the House. Including losing ground among seniors after creating Medicare following three decades of debate about providing health care for the elderly.
That's because people at mid-terms tend to be a snapshot on immediate conditions in the country.
Democrats are still facing all the various head winds that, you know, we've talked about over months, inflation and Biden approval.
I do think there are two other factors worth mentioning. One, in the near-term the climate provisions really are the first things Democrats have to go to young people with and say your vote in 2020 mattered, it changed policy.
And that's to help them overcome a lack of enthusiasm in Biden.
And second, by 2024, I think a lot of the things that are in these legislative accomplishments can be assets for Biden or whoever is the Democratic nominee.
The head of G.M., on a conference call this week with the president, said they're opening an E.V. plant, this year, next year and the year after.
If you look at the manufacturer provisions in this clean energy bill, in the Chips Bill, in the infrastructure bill, they're going to have a lot of ammunition to go into working-class communities across those key Rustbelt swing states and say we have invested in returning jobs to your communities.
BROWN: So what I hear you saying is it may not necessarily help in the short-term, but in the long-term, it likely will.
Ron Brownstein, great conversation. Thanks so much for coming on.
BROWNSTEIN: Thanks for having me.
BROWN: And you're in the CNN NEWSROOM.
More rain in Kentucky this weekend as residents suffer from the aftermath of devastating floods. But they are also resilient people. I can tell you they are because I'm a Kentuckian, and I know how resilient they are.
Up next, you're going to hear the stories of those rebuilding their communities.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can't help but cry. But it's going to be all right. We're going to be OK. We'll be back.
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BROWN: In California, all roads in and out of Death Valley National Park are closed tonight after the park was hit with six-months-worth of rainfall in a matter of hours.
Flash floods there yesterday trapped cars and stranded nearly a thousand people. The rain has cleared out of the area tonight, but officials say many roads remain critically damaged.
And tonight, in eastern Kentucky, heavy rain and new flood advisories in effect where at least 37 people have already died as a result of catastrophic flooding.
On Monday, President Biden and the first lady will travel to see the damage first-hand.
CNN's Dianne Gallagher has more on the utter devastation they will find.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're not -- we're not victims here. We're survivors.
DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): As the people of eastern Kentucky dig out of the mud, they're praying for a miracle in the form of donations, goodwill, dry weather. Volunteers lined up at the Apple shop and Whitesburg to sort an attempt to salvage hundreds of soaked but priceless pieces of Appalachian history.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everything's with.
GALLAGHER: Just across the river, another piece of Appalachian culture caked in mud after the floods ripped through this downtown distillery.
COLIN FULTZ, KENTUCKY MIST MOONSHINE: First you just heartbroken and then it's just try to fix it back, you know, get it back as fast as we can.
GALLAGHER: Running water, electricity, communications, hard to come by. Community touchstones destroyed, schools, pharmacies, fire departments and grocery stores, nothing spared in these tiny towns.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You think of it as a store, but it's actually a gathering place for everyone.
GALLAGHER: While Hindman volunteer firefighters were doing boat rescues, their department flooded, a fire truck's swept away. But it's the human toll that the chief can't shake. The majority of the flooding deaths happened in Knott County, including the four siblings who died. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just no one else people was heartbreaking. This is -- this is our community. It's our town, it's our home. For those who survived the flood, surviving its aftermath now brings new challenges which for many become more difficult by the day.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There's nothing left. Everything's destroyed.
GALLAGHER: The rural nature of the region coupled with the water crushing roads and bridges made rescues and resources difficult to come by with the National Guard coming in by air.
And neighbors, by ATV.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's a bridge.
GALLAGHER: Survivors helping survivors in places like Wolf Coal.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Neighbor helping neighbor, that means a lot.
GALLAGHER: And Fleming-Neon where nearly every home and business was affected.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I mean, it was -- it was like a warzone.
GALLAGHER: Leaving the people there stranded forced to lift themselves out of the mud, unable to seek outside help for days.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You can't help but cry. You can't help but cry. But it's going to be all right. We're going to be OK. We'll be back.
GALLAGHER: Survivors like the Letcher fire chief who hung on to the top of this tanker for 15 hours while the floodwaters rose around him say to really recover, no need more than repairs.
WALLACE BOLLING, LETCHER, KENTUCKY FIRE DEPARTMENT: PTSD is real. And I kind of wondered about things how to go forward but, you know, I got to fix myself first.
GALLAGHER: Most who escaped with their lives had little else left behind when the water receded.
GARY CLICK, SURVIVED FLOODING: You can see the mud running right there. Now that's how deep this water was.
GALLAGHER: Gary Click says most of his possessions are ruined. Like many in this region, he didn't have flood insurance because he doesn't live in a floodplain.
CLICK: I've never seen water like that. I mean, just like a dam burst or like a tsunami.
GALLAGHER: Gary lived by Troublesome Creek for most of his life, but he's not sure if his community ever independent and resilient can ever be the same.
CLICK: This is literally the end of this little community. GALLAGHER: Admitting he'll never be able to shake the fear of another flood.
CLICK: I believe we are seeing the effects of climate change right here. Just given time if we don't turn it around, just given time, it's going to get worse. People are going to see life as we know it changed dramatically. I've seen it. I've lived here 40 years.
GALLAGHER: Dianne Gallagher, CNN, Hazard Kentucky.
BROWN: You can see these entire towns wiped out. For more information on how to help Kentucky flood victims, visit cnn.com/impact.
And you were in the CNN NEWSROOM on this Saturday.
In Ukraine, alarm is growing over fighting near a nuclear power plant with one official calling the situation completely out of control. A report from Kyiv, next.
BROWN: Months after the world held its breath when Russia attacked a nuclear plant in Ukraine, new shelling reportedly took place there Friday. The International Atomic Energy Agency calls the latest assault, alarming. CNN Jason Carroll is in Ukraine with what both countries are saying now.
JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is the biggest nuclear complex of its kind in Europe. Therefore there are so many concerns from nuclear experts about reports of shelling that has occurred there. This as both the Russians and the Ukrainians are trading accusations over who was responsible.
The Russians claiming it was the Ukrainians who carried out three artillery strikes on the complex. Meanwhile, you have the Ukrainians who say it was the Russians who carried out the artillery strikes and are using the complex to carry out more strikes against Russian targets.
President Zelenskyy weighing in on the -- on the missile strikes, basically saying that this is putting all of Europe at risk.
VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, PRESIDENT OF UKRAINE (through translator): This is the largest nuclear station on our continent, and any shelling is an overt blatant crime, a terrorist act. Russia has to bear responsibility just for creating a threat to the nuclear plant as such.
CARROLL: Russia has been in control of the complex since March. The danger posed by the blasts are unclear at this point. CNN has not been able to independently confirm what type of damage was done at the plant.
Jason Carroll, CNN, Kyiv.
BROWN: Well, history was made in Washington, D.C. today. Michael Langley, officially, was sworn in as the first black four-star general and the history of the United States Marine Corps. During an emotional military ceremony, General Langley acknowledged the weight of his promotion.
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MICHAEL LANGLEY, U.S. MARINE CORPS: Let's all think about the significance of what this means to our core and our country because it's not about me. It's about the symbolism that's going to sow the seeds of installation on those young captains and all that row as we embark into global security.
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BROWN: General Langley will now take over the U.S.-Africa Command, overseeing America's military presence across 54 countries.
Well, friends, Republicans are seeing success against those who voted to hold former President Trump accountable for January 6. But how much blame do Democrats have for their primary success? We're going to take a look at a questionable electoral tactic that may be at work here for the record, next.
BROWN: Republican members of Congress who voted to impeach Donald Trump are facing primary challenger supported by the former president. For the record, some say those challengers are also getting help from Democrats. This is Peter Meijer, a Republican congressman from a district in Michigan that Democrats have not won since 1990. Meijer was challenged this week by former Trump administration official John Gibbs. Gibbs is also an election denier.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you believe Donald Trump should still be in office?
JOHN GIBBS, MICHIGAN CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE: I do. Yes. You know, he should have won the election and I think --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you believe he won the election?
GIBBS: I do. I do, yes.
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BROWN: Gibbs won by fewer than 4,000 votes. He spent $334,000 of his campaign, but the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee or DCCC spent $435,000 boosting Gibbs' ties to Donald Trump, and they even created a television ad.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: John Gibbs is too conservative for West Michigan. Handpicked by Trump to run for Congress, Gibbs called Trump the greatest president and worked in Trump's administration with Ben Carson. Gibbs has promised to push that same conservative agenda in Congress, a hard line against immigrants at the border and so-called patriotic education in our schools that Gibbs-Trump agenda is too conservative for West Michigan. DCCC is responsible for the content of this advertising.
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BROWN: Well, some analysts say that that ad actually helps Gibbs with some Republican voters. That's because it advertises the candidate support for Trump, which could encourage Trump supporters to show up at the primary. And Gibbs is not the only election denier getting help from Democrats.
The transparency group Open Secret says democratic aligned groups and nonprofits spent nearly $44 million on Republican races in several states. So why are they doing this? Well, the thinking is that more extreme Republicans will be easier for Democrats to beat in November. But what if they're wrong? Here's what Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger told CNN about the strategy.
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REP. ADAM KINZINGER (R-IL): If Peter's opponent wins and goes on to November and wins that the Democrats own that, congratulations. I mean, here's the thing. Don't keep coming to me asking where are all the good Republicans that defend democracy, and then take your donors money and spend half a million dollars promoting one of the worst election deniers that's out there.
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BROWN: Meanwhile, a group of 35 former Democratic lawmakers issued this joint statement against supporting election deniers, quote, "These destructive primary tactics aimed to elevate Republican candidates who Democrats hope that they can more easily beat in November. But it is risky and unethical to promote any candidate whose campaign is based on eroding trust in our elections. We must stop this practice and stop today.
Now, the DCCC says its actions are justified because House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is, quote, an anti-choice insurrectionist coddler and conspiracy enabler and we will do what it takes to keep the speaker's gavel out of his hands. But in January of 2021, right after the House voted to impeach President Trump, the head of the DCCC, Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney said this to CNN.
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REP. SEAN PATRICK MALONEY (D-NY): We've done our duty in the House, and I'm proud of that, I'm proud we had some Republicans stand with us, but we had far too many Republicans in the House who have aided and abetted this disaster. And they should be held accountable. It's no small thing to spread a lie that an election was stolen, to make it seem as though there's a monstrous evil being done when in fact, it's our -- it's our peaceful transfer of power.
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BROWN: Did you hear that? He said that he was proud of Republicans like Peter Meijer who voted to impeach. Now, for the record, Meijer, who just got primaried took away a different message this week.
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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 comes in and boosts exactly the same type of candidate that they claim is a fear to -- a threat to democracy, don't expect to be able to hold on to that sense of self-righteousness and sanctimony.
Don't expect to have Republicans who will look at that and say, you know, I know I'm going to get heat from my own side. I never expected the other side too as well double down in a cynical ploy to put forward the candidate they think is less electable.
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BROWN: And you're in the CNN NEWSROOM on the Saturday. The sizzling U.S. summer is a reminder that climate crisis is happening now, and it's on track to get worse. We're going to take a city by city look at how it could soon turn up the heat on where you live, up next.
BROWN: Well, this week, NASA showed us just how hot we got in July. In a time lapse of the global temperature showing a world that appears to be on fire. Look at this. But also consider this, if we don't stop and reverse current climate change trajectories where you live right now could feel like a different part of the country or even a different part of the world by the year 2100.
New York City, for example, could see its average summer highs increased by 7.6 degrees, making it feel more like Colombia, South Carolina, add another 5.8 degrees to Los Angeles and it could feel like it's well south of the border and Veracruz, Mexico.
Chicago was -- with a projected boost of more than nine degrees could feel more like Montgomery, Alabama, and Houston, Texas up an additional six plus degrees could feel like Lahore Pakistan.
Joining me now is Kaitlyn Trudeau, a data analyst for climatecentral.com. Hi, Kaitlyn. So these increases are in the single digits, but they could mean a huge impact, right, for people across the country in less than 80 years. We really are like frogs in a pot of water on the stove, aren't we?
KAITLYN TRUDEAU, DATA ANALYST, CLIMATE CENTRAL: Absolutely. And while we did see some increasingly large temperatures, it's important to remember that our analysis only looked at temperature trends. So humidity is also another very important variable that is going to add to that heat and that uncomfortable feeling of that summer has. So this is one piece of the puzzle, but it's a big piece.
BROWN: It is. And summers across the U.S. are already warmer than they were in the 1970s. But those increases are at most four degrees. So is the rate of warming speeding up as global emissions have increased?
TRUDEAU: Yes. So, we're seeing that as we add more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere that we are seeing more warming that is happening faster. You know, the Earth goes through natural cycles of climate change. But what's really different about this is the rate of warming. And that is something that we haven't seen before and why these numbers are so troubling.
BROWN: Your company believes that people are seeing visual images better, like showing Houston on par with Lahore, Pakistan, more than just hearing about the effects of climate change, but we still seem so slow to act.
TRUDEAU: Correct. Yes. I think a lot of times people think that 2100 is so far away, you know, it's the end of the century. But we're actually feeling the impacts now already. And it really doesn't take you to look far to see a lot of places where we're feeling climate impacts now. We're seeing really in high temperatures, we're seeing, you know, heavy downpours flooding, sea level rise, we're already been impacted now. And we're going to continue to be impacted if we don't make some changes.
BROWN: If the northern states are going to become as hot as the southern states, I've got to ask, then what does that mean for the increase in heat in southern states? I mean, will they just become uninhabitable?
TRUDEAU: I don't think they'll become habitable by this time. But I think that it will make them more unsafe during the day. And not everyone can afford, you know, air conditioning, which is really important. So we're going to see a lot more health impacts as the heat continues to increase.
BROWN: All right. So in addition to higher temperatures, wouldn't parts of Los Angeles and New York be underwater by 2100? TRUDEAU: So I think that sea level rise projections don't show Los Angeles or New York City falling beneath the tide line. But what's important to remember is places like New York, especially in New York will face worse and worse coastal flood events. The chances of storms like historic events of Sandy, they keep going up as the planet continues to warm and sea levels rise.
BROWN: And as we're talking, I'm seeing here on the Senate floor. There is debate right now about the historic climate bill that is poised to pass there on the Senate.
Thank you so much, Caitlin Trudeau. We really appreciate you coming on the show and providing some insight into this.
TRUDEAU: Thank you.
BROWN: Well, a beloved natural ecosystem is seeing new signs of life. A report published this week, says parts of the Great Barrier Reef reached their highest amounts of coral in 36 years. Scientists credit the recovery to fast growing branching and play corals, which create a good habitat for reef animals.
Now, the Australian Institute of Marine Science says while the increase in coral is good news, of course, that is good news, right, losses and other parts of the reef and climate change could quickly reverse the trend. Again, climate change having a big impact.
Well, don't forget that you can tweet me @pamelabrowncnn. You can also follow me on Instagram. 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 9:00 p.m. Eastern.
Thank you so much for spending the part of your Saturday evening with me keeping me company. I'm Pamela Brown. I'll see you again tomorrow night starting at 6:00 Eastern. The CNN special report, "Megaphone for Conspiracy: Alex Jones" is next. Have a great night.