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King Charles III Officially Proclaimed Monarch in Historic Ceremony; Prince William And Prince Harry We're Joined By The Princess Of Wales And The Duchess Of Sussex, Outside The Gates Of Windsor Castle; Ukraine's Progress In Counteroffensive Forces Russia To Regroup; Ukraine's Progress In Counteroffensive Forces Russia To Regroup; BYU: No Evidence Of Racist Heckling At Duke Volleyball Match; Former MN Senator Al Franken (D) Discusses VP Harris' Criticism Of The Supreme Court & Effect Of Roe v. Wade On Midterms. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired September 10, 2022 - 15:00   ET




JIM ACOSTA, CNN HOST: You're live in the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Jim Acosta in Washington. A striking moment on the day the UK's new monarch is formally proclaimed. Both sons of King Charles III reunited today after the death of their grandmother Queen Elizabeth II. Despite a highly public rift, Prince William and Prince Harry we're joined by the Princess of Wales and the Duchess of Sussex, outside the gates of Windsor Castle. All four of them spent 45 minutes greeting crowds and viewing tributes to the Queen. Sources telling CNN, it was Prince William, who invited Harry and Meghan to join.

Of course, tension between the brothers has been brewing for some time now as they find themselves in opposite corners. William is now the heir apparent to the throne and Prince Harry stepped back from royal duties and moved to the United States, but their special connection with the Queen was never broken. Prince Harry told the crowd the Queen's presence can be felt, "no matter what room of the castle you are in." And in a statement, Prince William wrote, "It will be some time before the reality of life without granny will truly feel real."

CNN Scott McLean joins me now from Windsor. Wow, what a day, Scott? And what a surprise to see these two brothers together. How significant was this moment?

SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, I should point out first off, Jim, that all of the people who have come here today, they didn't come here with the expectation that they would see Will and Kate or Harry and Meghan, they came here with the expectation that they would be able to pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth II and drop some flowers or cards or candles or whatever, and just sort of pay their respects at the gates of Windsor Castle only when the royal staff started putting up barriers to they figured that somebody was coming.

We were only told that this would be a visit. We figured that this would be William and Kate, the Prince and Princess of Wales now, because they are the working Royals. And it was a huge shock. It was silent. You could almost hear a pin drop when the four of them emerged from the car. You can see Harry, get out first. And you saw Meghan and then the other two Royals as well.

And it was remarkable to see them all together, especially because of the very well publicized rift between the Cambridges as they were formally known and the Sussexes, between Will and Kate and between Harry and Meghan. And yet the four of them, they browsed past the flowers and cards that were laid in Honor of Queen Elizabeth, they read some of them.

And then they started working their way down the lineup of people collecting more flowers, talking to people accepting condolences. We had a chance to speak to several people in the crowd who had some interaction with the Royals and with Harry and Meghan as well. And I actually met one young woman, just 14 years old, who was here with her mother, who actually shared a hug with Meghan, listen.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We were just waiting for her to come. And she came in and asked my name, and how my day was, how long I was waiting. And I also if I could have a hug and we -- she hugged me back. So that was just quite an amazing moment. I'm still shaking now. I can't really explain what the feeling was. And she did it but it was really nice.

MCLEAN: Why did you feel like you wanted to hug her.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't know, it just went through my mind. Like everyone was kind of cheering me on to, and I guess -- I just felt like I needed to in a way. Like I just really wanted to at least hug her because I look up to her in some ways. And it just felt like it was the right thing to do.


MCLEAN: So, I think the question on everyone's mind now is, is this just a temporary show of unity because of the passing of Queen Elizabeth? Or is this more meaningful reconciliation? I got close enough to Harry about the distance between me and this camera to ask him whether he had reconciled with his brother. He didn't answer the question and my hand was quickly slapped by the Royal aides, who reminded me that I was not to be asking questions, Jim.

ACOSTA: Sounds like they were not royally abused. All right, Scott McLean. Thank you very much.

This morning, King Charles III was formally declared Britain's new monarch in a historic ceremony before the secession council.



KING CHARLES III: My mother's reign was unequaled in its duration. Its dedication and its devotion. Even as we grieve, we give thanks for this most faithful life.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To call to his mercy our late Sovereign lady Queen Elizabeth II of blessed and glorious memory, by whose decease the Crown of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is solely and rightfully come to the Prince Charles Philip Arthur George.

KING CHARLES III: In carrying out the heavy task that has been laid upon, unto which I now dedicate what remains to me of my life, I pray for the guidance and help of Almighty God.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Three cheers for His Majesty The King. Hip Hip.

CROWD: Hooray.


CROWD: Hooray.


CROWD: Hooray.



ACOSTA: And as King Charles carries out his new royal duties, he and his family are also grieving. In Balmoral where Queen Elizabeth spent her final days, royal family members waved to crowds outside the estate, the Queen's granddaughter Princess Eugenie, also shedding tears and we are learning more about when members of the public can pay their respects. The Queen will lie in state in Westminster Hall for four days ahead of the state funeral, which will take place on Monday, September 19th.

And joining me now to talk about this is Sally Bedell Smith, a CNN Contributor and Author of "Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life" and Emily Nash, a Royal Correspondent for Hello! magazine.

Ladies, thank you very much to both of you for being with us. Emily, we will discuss the New Kingdom moment, but what a surprise to see this joint appearance. You know, it just sort of lit up the crowd there earlier today with the new Prince and Princess of Wales, and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex outside Windsor Castle. Source tells us it was at the invitation of Prince William. But perhaps there's a bit of a thaw going on between these two brothers and perhaps a new chapter ahead in their relationship. What did you think?

EMILY NASH, ROYAL CORRESPONDENT, HELLO! MAGAZINE: Look, it was a really heartwarming moment. And I'm told that both of them, both sides felt that it was the right thing to do to honor their grandmother. It was a very last-minute decision. The invitation from William and Kate, the Sussexes took it up very gladly. And I think while it's perhaps not the end of the riff that has been apparent between the brothers in recent years, it's very much an olive branch. And it took a lot of courage, I think on both sides to do that.

ACOSTA: And they're clearly doing it for their family. And Sally, this all comes a day after King Charles mentioned Harry and Meghan and his first speech as monarch, sending them love as they build their new lives overseas. But do you think this appearance today could be a sign that they might be welcomed back as working Royals, what do you think?

SALLY BEDELL SMITH, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I think they -- if they do the right thing, they could well be welcomed back. I think there's a lot of worry about what may be coming from the Sussexes. Harry's memoir, which may or may not contain things that are insulting and hurting to the to the British Royal Family. So that's a big question mark and Meghan statements today have not been helpful. But I think it was a large-minded gesture of William to invite them.

And I think what Prince -- excuse me, what King Charles said last night sort of opened the door, a crack and it'll be fascinating because Harry and Meghan are presumably going to be staying at their home in the Windsor Home Park, which is the private park around Windsor Castle. And that's where William and Kate have their new home. They're going to be very near each other. They're going to be there for 10 days. And it'll be an opportunity perhaps for them to spend some time together and see if they can mend some fences.

ACOSTA: Work through some things. And Emily, so much has been made of the fact that King Charles at age 73 has been heir to the throne longer than anyone in the history of the British Monarchy. He's been in training for some time.


But the King, I think, throughout all of this has just been splendid, in his speech today pledged to follow his mother's example, and dedicate all that his life that he has left to service. How much -- how far has he come do you think in terms of rehabilitating his image in the court of public opinion? I mean, we would not be honest, if we were to say that he is, you know, universally loved there in the U.K.

NASH: No, I think that's absolutely fair. And look, he comes with a great deal more baggage than his mother did when she became Queen as a very young woman. So, you know, we know so much more about Charles, you know, a lot more about what motivates him, what drives him, his passions, his interests, and the things that have been more controversial in his past.

I think he's done a great deal in recent years to improve his public image. I think people have got to understand him. And he's been proven right on lots of things. You know, in terms of climate change, he was ahead of the game. He's been talking about it for 50 years. It's now on everyone's lips. But, you know, he understands that this is going to change now. It doesn't really matter how long his apprenticeship has been. This is the start for him, something he's been preparing for all his life. And yet it is very different to what he's been doing up until now. ACOSTA: And Sally, Emily was just referring to this as Prince of Wales, King Charles did not hesitate to wade into political issues, including climate change environmental protection. He was the green Prince in many ways. How will that change now that he's King, or perhaps it becomes an even bigger cause?

SMITH: Well, he said pretty clearly, when he spoke last night, that he was putting his causes and his charities to the side because he knew, he knows from having observed his mother and from having studied constitutional history, that he really has to be above politics, and whether, you know, whether you agree or disagree with climate change, it does have a political -- politically divisive aspect to it.

But he may weigh in, I mean, he's had some -- what he wants to do, or what he has said he wants to do, that is different from the Queen is he wants to use his convening power, which is his ability to bring people together from different points of view. He's done that in interfaith dialogue. And I think we may well see that as an example of how he may set up his monarchy in a slightly different, but non- controversial way.

ACOSTA: And Emily, we got to eavesdrop a bit on the king's meeting with the new Prime Minister, Liz Truss, who earlier this week was appointed by Queen Elizabeth. It's been quite a week for the British. Let's take a listen.


KING CHARLES III: It's been so touching, this afternoon when they arrived. All these people come to give their condolences, and leave flowers.

LIZ TRUSS, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Your Majesty, my very, very sincere condolences.

KING CHARLES III: You're very kind. It's the moment I've been dreading, as I know a lot of people have but we try to keep everything going.

TRUSS: Absolutely, thank you.

KING CHARLES III: Come, come, come. Come and have a seat.


ACOSTA: How about that. But interestingly enough, there was a time years ago that Liz Truss was anti monarchy, but I suppose now they can bond over both being new at their job. But, you know, this is going to be an issue for King Charles globally.

NASH: Absolutely. I was going to say that let's not forget, you know, there are 15 overseas realms, he was present when Barbados departed as one of the Queen's overseas realms a couple of years ago. There are so many question marks over other Commonwealth countries who still retain them as head of state. There are lots of critics, you know, a lot of people loved and respected the Queen despite being anti-monarchy. And I think he -- I think it's very crucial that he's getting out to

work straightaway. They need some continuity. They need some stability. And as he said there to Liz Truss, we need to keep things moving. You know, this is unprecedented, as far as I'm aware in British history to have two monarchs and two prime ministers in the space of just five - four, five days, it's really quite remarkably be stabilizing, and what is already quite an uncertain time for people in this country.

ACOSTA: Well, I hope all of you get a chance to catch your breath here in the coming days. Sally Bedell Smith and Emily Nash, thanks to both of you very much. We appreciate it.

Coming up, much of life across the U.K. is on pause as they enter an official period of mourning for the Queen, while welcoming their new king. We'll go live to Buckingham Palace next.



ACOSTA: A short time ago Buckingham Palace released some of the funeral plans for Queen Elizabeth. Tomorrow morning the Queen's coffin will leave Balmoral and travel to Edinburgh where it will lie in rest until Tuesday. From there, the coffin will travel to London where it will lie at rest at Buckingham Palace, later moving to Westminster Hall ahead of the state funeral on Monday September 19. CNN's Anna Stewart joins us now from Buckingham Palace where crowds have been gathering all day. It has been quite a day, hasn't it?

ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER: It really has, all day and all night I'd say, Jim. I'm not sure you can see behind because it is getting quite dark here at Buckingham Palace but still hundreds of people surrounding the palace here. And you know what? It has really been an emotional roller coaster, I would say.

Today, I've spoken to people in tears but we've also had cheers and I think I can pinpoint this transition, maybe it's when we first saw King Charles III yesterday out in public. We've been speaking to the people lining the mouth outside Buckingham Palace bringing flowers to a memorial service and here's how they feel.



STEWART: Hours after the news broke, the mourners came, flowers left at the foot of Buckingham Palace and pinned to the gates. So many in fact that the palace has moved them to a new home across the road, a memorial of flowers.

This is just the beginning of this floral tribute. So, you can imagine how many flowers will be here, in the coming days. 10s of 1000s of people are expected to turn up to Buckingham Palace and come here to Green Park to pay their respects to the Queen. It's an opportunity to reflect on her reign, what she meant to people, and a chance for people to show the Queen and the royal family how much she meant to them.

Whether it's letters of gratitude, or pictures of corgis, it's an individual expression of grief expressed in public for all to see and share.

She was kind --


STEWART: Notes from children who celebrated the Queen's Platinum Jubilee just three months ago.

STEWART: You're going to remember this, aren't you?


STEWART: You're older.

(Voice-over): For many, the emotions are still raw. For others, it's a storm that's passing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Really, really sad. So, you almost sort of saw it coming through the afternoon. But then when it cut to the announcement, there were tears in our house, then you have to sort of process it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Left some flowers for the Queen because she's such an amazing person. I felt very sad because she's the only Queen or person I've ever had.

STEWART: A sentiment shared by those far older than Annabelle, if you can remember life before the Queen's 70-year reign. Here there are also messages for the king, one from nine-year-old William Morris, saying he's grieving too, and understands how the King must feel. His grandmother recently passed away.

Crowds gathered to catch a glimpse of King Charles III, as he returned to Buckingham Palace after his formal proclamation as King.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We came to dominantly today to see, to leave a flower for the Queen, which is why we came this morning, isn't it. And then it's been such an honor to see King Charles as well.

STEWART: Maybe it feels quite Duplin, I would say now.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yeah. You know what, it's really nice and I really hope that the crowd and the country give Charles a chance and is swiftly.

STEWART: Well, as you can see, this period of national mourning isn't just about looking back. It's also about looking forward.


STEWART: You can almost summarize this sort of jewel emotion in God Save the Queen, Long Live the King. Both emotions at the same time. And as King Charles travels across the four nations, we now know he'll be going to Edinburgh on Monday, Belfast, Tuesday and Cardiff later in the week. He will be visiting the four nations. He'll be seeing his people.

And I think we'll see more of the scenes of jubilation and hope for the future of the monarchy. Of course, he also found out that there will be a lying-in state from Wednesday and I expect hundreds of 1000s of people will want to visit the Queen there.

ACOSTA: All right. Anna Stewart, thank you very much for that report., we appreciate it. And be sure to join CNN for a look at the life and legacy of the late monarch, a CNN special report, "A Queen for The Ages, Queen Elizabeth II" airs tonight at 9 p.m. right here on CNN. We'll be right back.



ACOSTA: Ukraine is making big gains in their counter offensive efforts against Russia. Much of the progress is happening in the Kharkiv Region. Officials there saying the main Russian artery through the region has been cut, forcing Russians to retreat. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says his troops have been able to take back nearly 800 square miles of territory in just 10 days. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is hailing Ukraine's success on the battlefield.


LLOYD AUSTIN, U.S. DEFENSE SECRETARY: And we've all been impressed by what we've seen, their willingness to stand up to a much larger, much stronger force and be effective in their efforts. So, we've been inspired by their courage and their commitment.


ACOSTA: CNN's Melissa Bell joins us now from east central Ukraine. Melissa, how is Russia reacting to Ukraine's progress?

MELISSA BELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, for the time being all we've had, despite the several days of pretty substantial and very quick gains, Jim, has been a statement from the Russian Ministry of Defense today acknowledging some of those losses for the Russians in eastern Ukraine. But speaking of a sort of tactical retreat, explaining that they left those parts of the Kharkiv Region in which the Ukrainian forces have advanced so quickly, to regroup further south in Donetsk.

But let's be clear, what's happened seems to have taken Russian forces by surprise. This is something that Russian military bloggers normally pro-Moscow had been warning about, that that counter offensive that had been launched in the south in August 29 should not be a reason to neglect defending their positions in the East. And that appears to be exactly what's happened.

This second counter offensive launched in eastern Ukraine and specifically Jim and the Kharkiv region, really making very false gains, village after village falling and, in the end, the troops, the Ukrainian troops reaching key towns like Kupiansk and Izium today with reports that they may now be even further south within Kharkiv Region.


So that artery you talk about that goes from the Russian border down to the beginning of Donetsk and Luhansk appears now to have been broken for the Russians. They were their important military hubs, supply routes, now back in the hands of Ukrainian forces.

These are gains that were not just quick, Jim, but they're strategically and symbolically extremely important for the Ukrainians.

And perhaps the most important surprise of this, specifically with the quick gains of today is how little resistance they appear to have been facing, especially in the east.

With reports that some villages were not defended at all, reports of Russian soldiers dumping their weapons, taking off their uniforms, putting on civilian clothes and heading to the border. I think that is perhaps what's most surprising, how little, how poorly defended so many of these parts have been.

With reports also, with that counteroffensive, Ukrainian military sources say important gains have been made as well.

Overall, as you say, quite a big patch of territory since the first of September, which seems to have taken even the Ukrainian side by surprise.

They're being very tight lipped about it. There's no access given to the frontlines for the time being. They give just little bits of information.

But it's on social media that we're seeing the Ukrainian soldiers themselves of pictures of the people being liberated, the flags going up on roof tops.

Really quite remarkable pictures and very inspiring to the Ukrainians who are looking for a little bit of hope -- Jim?

JIM ACOSTA, CNN HOST: Absolutely. Stunning developments in the last several days.

All right, Melissa Bell, thank you very much.

And a programming note. On a CNN exclusive from Kyiv, Fareed Zakaria's one-on-one interview with Ukraine's president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy. That airs tomorrow on "FAREED ZAKARIA, GPS" at 1:00 p.m. Eastern right here on CNN.

Back in the U.S., officials at Brigham Young University now say there's no evidence that any racial heckling happened during a volleyball match against Duke University last month. That's according to the university.

BYU Athletics initially apologized to Duke and banned a fan accused of shouting racial slurs.

CNN's Martin Savidge has more -- Martin?

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Jim, BYU is saying that after an investigation they have found no evidence to corroborate the allegations by a Duke University student that there was racial heckling during a volleyball game.

Let me back this up. It was at the end of August when Rachel Richardson, who is a starting sophomore for the Duke University volleyball team, she tweeted out that during a game with Brigham Young University, that a BYU fan began racially heckling and harassing African-American athletes on the Duke team.

What's more, she went on to allege that when the sports officials during the game were notified of the incident, they did nothing to intervene or stop what was happening.

BYU says since that time it has conducted an internal investigation. It said that it reviewed audio and video recordings of the game that they collected from fans. They also said they reviewed the university broadcast footage.

BYU also said that they conducted interviews with more than 50 people at the game, including sports personnel and student athletes.

As a result they say, quote, "From our extensive review, we have not found any evidence to corroborate the allegation that fans engaged in racial heckling or other racial slurs at the event."

They went on to say, "As we stated earlier, we would not tolerate any conduct that would make a student athlete feel unsafe."

Shortly thereafter, Duke came out with their own response, saying quote, "The 18 members of the Duke University volleyball team are exceptionally strong women who represent themselves, families, and Duke University with the utmost integrity. We unequivocally stand with and champion them, especially when their character is called into question."

In other words, Duke is not criticizing the investigation. They are simply coming out and saying that their athletes are not liars. It's clear that both universities would like this to be the end of the matter.

Meanwhile, BYU says that they have apologized to their fan who was alleged to have done the racial heckling and lifted a ban against that fan.

Does this truly end the matter? We'll have to wait and see -- Jim?

ACOSTA: All right, Martin, thank you very much.


And coming up next -- there he is -- former Senator Al Franken is going to be joining us in just a few moments. We'll ask Al what he thinks about what Vice President Kamala Harris is saying about the Supreme Court and whether November is shaping up to the Roe-vember. Al Franken coming up next with Alice Stewart in just a few minutes.


ACOSTA: Vice President Kamala Harris is laying into the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade. Let's take a listen.


KAMALA HARRIS, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I think this is an activist court. This court took that constitutional right away. And we are suffering as a nation because of it. That causes me great concern about the integrity of the court overall.


ACOSTA: Now a few hours after NBC shared that clip, Chief Justice John Roberts indirectly responded.

Here was his comments last night in his first public remarks about the Dobbs decision.


JOHN ROBERTS, CHIEF JUSTICE, U.S. SUPREME COURT: The last year was an unusual one and difficult in many respects. It was gut wrenching every morning to drive into a Supreme Court with barricades around it.

And lately, the criticism is phrased in terms of because of these opinions it calls into question the legitimacy of the court.

Simply because people disagree with an opinion is not a basis for questioning the legitimacy of the court.


ACOSTA: Let's discuss now with former Democratic Senator Al Franken. He's the host of the "Al Franken" podcast. And with me here in Washington, CNN political commentator and Republican strategist, Alice Stewart.


Al, let me ask you this. Confidence in the Supreme Court is at all- time low. I supposed The chief justice can say what he wants. He does seem to be bristling at this criticism in a sort of mild way.

But nominees are now confirmed pretty much by party line votes now. And there does appears to be, based on what Vice President Kamala Harris was saying, there does appear to be winds at the backs of the Democrats heading into the midterms because of this decision that was overturned.

Your thoughts? AL FRANKEN (D), FORMER U.S. SENATOR FROM MINNESOTA: I disagree with

what the chief justice said, The legitimacy of the court was undermined when they wouldn't take up Merrick Garland.

And you'll remember that McConnell said it was because it was an election year. And you'll remember Lindsey Graham pledging that if a vacancy came open during an election year in '20, that he wouldn't vote for -- they wouldn't take up a nominee.

They've stolen two seats. The one that Merrick Garland wasn't given a hearing for. And the one that Coney Barrett, where she was seated a week before the election. That destroyed the legitimacy of the court.

ACOSTA: Alice, what do you think? Did Chief Justice Roberts sort of -- he sort of ignored some of what Al is talking about there in that there's a tremendous amount of controversy --


ACOSTA: -- as to how the court got tilted in the direction of the far right.

STEWART: To throw some accuracy in what Al said there, look, Merrick Garland was held up because we had divided government. We had a Democrat in the White House, and we had Republicans in control of --


FRANKEN: That's not what was -- that's not what McConnell said.

STEWART: But that's the way historically this has been. When you're in close to an election year and you have divided government --


FRANKEN: No, no. That's not the way it's been historically done.

STEWART: When you have divided government, there typically is inclination to --


FRANKEN: Tell me when this happened before.

STEWART: When you --

FRANKEN: Tell me when it happened before.

STEWART: Well, Merrick Garland is certainly one.

When there's a divided government --


FRANKEN: No, before Merrick Garland.

STEWART: They're moving -- they're not moving forward --


FRANKEN: Tell me when this happened before.

STEWART: Al, I'm telling you, this is what the - Mitch McConnell said --


FRANKEN: Tell me when it happened before.

STEWART: I can't --


FRANKEN: You said this is what happened historically. Tell me when it happened before.

STEWART: Look, this is the way that Republicans --



STEWART: Look, I can't give you an exact example of when this happened in the past. But I can tell you --

FRANKEN: You know why you can't? Because it hasn't happened before.

STEWART: Look, the basis for not appointing him was because of that specific reason. But moving forward --

FRANKEN: No, it wasn't. And McConnell explicitly said that it was the, quote, "Biden rule," and HE quoted a little piece of a speech that Biden had given in June of '80.

And he -- Biden said they wouldn't take up, if they weren't consulted and if --- and this was about someone resigning in June after a term of the court, which is very different than someone dying.

Scalia died in February. And you saw -- you guys, if you can find the tape, you can find Lindsey Graham saying, I -- keep the tape, we will not take up a judge if someone dies, a nominee if someone dies in an election year, in the next election.

This is total hypocrisy. And you, actually, I'm surprised that you're claiming this. And you can't come can't come up with an example because there's none.

STEWART: But to get back to the point of the conversation here, Kamala Harris --

FRANKEN: No. This is the point.

STEWART: We're talking about Kamala Harris and her calling the current Supreme Court justices activist justices because she doesn't like the outcome of the ruling.

And when they made their decision on Roe v. Wade, they looked at the precedent and they looked at Roe v. Wade and said it was egregiously wrong from the start.

And they looked at the constitutional aspect of this and saw that there was no constitutionally protected right for an abortion listed in the Constitution. That's why they took it out.

And the most important thing here is this took an important thing like abortion out of the hands of nine unelected justices and put it back in the hands of elected officials at the state level, which is exactly where it should be.

And the only reason that Kamala Harris said they're activists is because she doesn't like the ruling.

ACOSTA: Well, Al, speaking of that, in Michigan, voters will decide on a ballot initiative that will enshrine abortion rights into the state constitution.

Al, I have to warn you, you know, anti-abortion activists have been compared to the dog that caught the car with the Dobbs decision. And you have to wonder whether the dog is going to get run over now.


Because it looks to be the case in state after state, voters are going to be showing up at the polls in droves to make their voices heard on this.

FRANKEN: You remember when Kavanaugh said this wasn't just precedent, Roe v. Wade, but it was -- but Kasie was precedent upon precedent? This is why these guys are considered not legitimate. Because they lied in their confirmation hearings.

Yes, they caught the car. You saw, in Kansas, it was, what, 59 -- or - no, 59/41. In Kansas. This is a pretty conservative state.

And you saw what -- you know, what happened in Michigan, is a perfect example of how the Republican Party has ceased to participate in good faith in our democracy.

This is their canvassing board that is a two-two board, two Republicans, two Democrats. They had 750,000 signatures from people saying we want this on the ballot. We want to be able to vote on this.

They -- these two commissioners said, oh, no. They found some absurd little like spacing in the -- and so they rejected this while the Supreme Court then decided 5-2.

And it was a heavily Republican, the Supreme Court, that what they were doing was absurd, what they were doing. So now the people in Michigan are going to decide.

Look, this is something that a woman should decide. That a woman with her doctor should decide. This isn't something that should be decided by other people.

ACOSTA: What do you think, Alice?

STEWART: I think this should be decided not by the Supreme Court but at the state level.

And, look, I --


FRANKEN: How about guns?


ACOSTA: Are you worried about the political consequences of this?

STEWART: Look --


ACOSTA: Republicans may pay a price.

STEWART: We have seen consequences of this. Kansas is a perfect example.

Al, you're right. When abortion is on the ballot, up or down, there's a lot of support across the board for abortion protections.

So when it gets down to it -- and these are ballot initiatives and we're going to see more and more of them -- more people do side for abortion protections.

The most important thing, though, is pro-life advocates, like myself -- I think there needs to be exceptions for rape, incest, and life of the mother.

And any state that does not have those exceptions is doing a tremendous disservice to the pro-life issue. So we need to make sure and keep those exceptions in place.

But, look, I support life --

FRANKEN: How about doing a disservice to the women?

STEWART: Look, again, I think a service to the sanctity of life is what I stand for and I think we need to protect life.

FRANKEN: That's your religious belief. If you don't want to have -- if you don't want to have an abortion, don't have one.

STEWART: Look, the point is, there are going to be, at the state level, a lot of times where the people that are supportive of the pro- life issue and supportive of overturning Roe v. Wade, it's not going to be a great outcome for us.

But the most important thing is that the pro-life movement and social evangelicals fought to overturn Roe v. Wade to put this back in the hands of the people and that's exactly what's happening.

FRANKEN: It's not a great outcome for a 10-year-old who's raped and has to go to another state.

And these -- these justices -- I asked you right at the beginning of this to come up with an example. You still haven't. This is an illegitimate court.

ACOSTA: All right. Al Franken, Alice Stewart, we'll have this discussion again. Thanks very much.

We'll be right back.


STEWART: Thanks, Jim.


ACOSTA: In Texas, a long overdue hero's homecoming for a World War II soldier. The remains of Army Air Force's Sergeant Harold Ray Boyd were finally returned to his family nearly eight decades after his death.

Sergeant body was a B-17 gunner and died when his plane was shot out over the sky over Berlin in 1945. He was 25 years old. After years of waiting, Boyd's remains were finally identified using DNA from his relatives.

Boyd was welcomed home by several family members and an Army Honor Guard. And he will officially be laid to rest later this week. Just an incredible moment there in Corpus Christi, Texas.

The high cost of home renovations led this "CNN Hero" to the joy of doing projects herself. Eventually, she realized teaching these skills to other women could help her entire community.

Now she is offering a free training program helping women in North Carolina build family sustaining careers in construction.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We're going to talk about putting the sheeting on the roof today.

NORA EL-KHOURI, CNN HERO: Our students learn a little bit of everything. The basics like safety, tools and materials, construction math.

And then we go into hands on stuff. Carpentry, electrical, plumbing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: One-twenty-six and three-fourths.

EL-KHOURI: Our program is actually solving two problems at once. We're training women for living-wage paying jobs in the construction trades.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is where it gets fun. (LAUGHTER)


EL-KHOURI: And we're also helping older adults age in place. That's really a win-win. You get to watch something come together that you built.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Does that feel like it's going to work for you?




EL-KHORI: There's just such a feeling of accomplishment.

If we don't see women out there doing this, other women, they'll never see this as an opportunity. If you can't see it, you can't be it.


ACOSTA: And to see her team in action and get the full story -- it's a great one -- go to