Return to Transcripts main page

CNN Newsroom

Coast Guard Tracking Suspected Russian Spy Ship Near Hawaii; Biden To Launch 2024 Campaign Next Month Despite Documents Probe; Study Shows Some May Be Able To Extend Time Between Colonoscopies; Florida Rejects AP African American Studies Course. Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired January 19, 2023 - 15:30   ET



OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: It says it is in international waters where it is allowed to be and it hasn't conducted any unsafe or unprofessional actions or maneuvers that would raise alarm bells for the Pentagon or for the Coast Guard. But as you point out, it's the timing of this that is interesting with tensions high between Washington and Moscow, and that's why this right now is getting so much attention.

There are Russian spy ships that operate this way, in terms of operating in international waters including as we see now, off the coast of Hawaii, picking up essentially whatever signals they can get, observing whatever aircraft movements they can see or marine movements, and this is how they work. The Coast Guard tracks this. The Defense Department tracks this.

Again, not the first time we've seen this as an example back in 2019, there was a Russian spy vessel off the East Coast of the United States. In that situation, the difference was there were unsafe actions from the ship, and that's why D.O.D. flagged it at the time. Back then, it was the ship was operating without lights and it wasn't responding to commercial vessels, and that creates a danger. That's when these sorts of incidents and interactions can be raised up on military channels and perhaps even on diplomatic channels.

It works the other way as well and this is worth pointing out. For example, a just few weeks ago, the Chinese intercepted a U.S. reconnaissance aircraft flying in international air space, and because of what the U.S. called an unsafe maneuver in that case, it was raised up military and perhaps even diplomatic channels.

But the Coast Guard is watching this Russian spy vessel or suspected Russian spy vessel operating off the coast of Hawaii, making sure it is operating safely, and if that changes, Victor and Alisyn, we will certainly find out.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN HOST: OK, Oren Liebermann, thank you.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN HOST: When it comes to President Biden's inner circle, some say the documents controversy is just D.C. elite making D.C. noise. Will it blow over like they think it will? We'll talk about it. [04:35:26]


BLACKWELL: Some new CNN reporting, President Biden is not letting the special counsel investigation into his handling of classified documents affect his plans to run for reelection. He plans to launch his 2024 campaign after his State of the Union address next month.

CAMEROTA: CNN senior reporter Isaac Dovere is here. So, Isaac, do Biden's advisers think that this is going to blow over?

ISAAC DOVERE, CNN SENIOR REPORTER: Well, they're taking the investigation seriously, cooperating with all the questions that are being asked by the Justice Department and the National Archives and everything else. They've returned these files.

What they do think is going to blow over in the D.C. noise is the political flap around this, and all the predictions about how this is so terrible for Joe Biden. What they say is they have been through a lot of these before. They've seen a lot of predictions in the past. White House spokesman Andrew Bates telling me that if you look at the report of the pundits' predictions, it's dismal, and that is the mood that they have.

What this all leads to is thinking about the president's plans for reelection, and where the timing is on that. Nothing is finalized. We don't know for sure what's going to happen, and if he is indeed going to run, but all signs are pointing that way, and the plan is that. The plan is for him to announce sometime after the State of the Union address which is scheduled for February 7th. Probably a couple of weeks to longer than that afterwards, and that has been the time frame and the plan before anything was known about these documents. I'm told that still remains the plan and the time frame even with everything that we've learned over the last couple of days.

OK, interesting, Isaac Dovere, thank you.

Well, colon cancer is one most preventable cancers with effective screens. And now a new study suggests that some people may be able to wait longer between colonoscopies. That's next.



CAMEROTA: It's the third leading cause of cancer deaths for both men and women in the U.S., and now new evidence finds that some people may be able to go longer than the recommended ten years for their colon cancer screenings.

CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta is with us now. Sanjay, good to see you. So, colonoscopies -- their the gold standard for detecting this very preventable cancer. Who can extend the time between these procedures? DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, it's

amazing how excited people are about this story because I think universally nobody likes the idea of getting a colonoscopy. What they're saying here specifically is that this doesn't necessarily have an impact so far on who should be getting screened, and the interval, but the study is interesting. I want to talk you through this.

First of all, the recommendation for who should get a first colonoscopy stays the same. It's people between the ages of 45 and 75. And what this study looked at was the interval of every ten years. Very interesting, the 120,000 colonoscopies they looked at that were performed 10 years or 14 years after the original colonoscopy. These are all in patients who had normal first colonoscopies. And here's what they found. About 3.6 percent of women after ten years found something despite having a negative screening on the first test. It went up a little bit at 14 years at 4.9 percent. It's a little bit higher for men overall.

But you get a sense by looking at those numbers, I get the ten-year follow-up, what's the chance it's going to show something? Not very high, and this is -- it's sort of fascinating when you look at preventive screening tests and how have to, like, evaluate this sort of data.

Again, nothing's changed officially in terms of the recommendations, but it might, more likely in women, and in younger people to answer your question specifically. They had the lowest chance of having a positive finding on that follow-up colonoscopy.

CAMEROTA: So, Sanjay, for people who hear this and are tempted to reschedule the colonoscopy now, just remind us how important it is to get screened.


GUPTA: Yes, I mean, look, this is all about that interval between the first and second colonoscopies. That's what this study is. When it comes to the first colonoscopy, age 45. It used to be 50 the recommendation. They lowered it to 45 a few years ago. By the way, I just had one of these not that long ago, and it wasn't that bad for all the concern and all the apprehension people have, it's not that bad.

But let me show you the benefit overall, again from that primary, that first scan. 40 percent risk reduction of getting colon cancer. You find a polyp, you find something abnormal, you're able to remove that using colonoscopy. And 68 percent risk reduction of dying from colon cancer. So, the screenings do work. No one is questioning that. That's not what the study is questioning. It's really questioning, OK. You have had a negative colonoscopy, meaning you didn't find anything the first time. What should that interval period be? Ten years or longer? Stay tuned. It may change based on studies like this.

BLACKWELL: Yes, so this is actually just for specifically for colonoscopies. What do you know about the other types of screenings for colon cancer? GUPTA: Yes, you know, I looked at that. I anticipated this question,

and you know, the most common other type of screening test is something known as a stool-based test, and you know, we can look at sort of the criteria there. You do this frequently. You do it at home, but critically really important, if there's any kind of abnormality, you still need to get a colonoscopy, OK.

So, you may be preventing a colonoscopy or lessening your chance in needing one, but you could still need one if there's any abnormality, versus the direct visualization which is a colonoscopy. You get longer intervals, you don't have to be tested as often. You do use sedation or anesthesia and if you are doing the colonoscopy, and there's an abnormality, you can address it at the time, right. You don't have to have a follow-up test after that. So, there's pluses and minuses both ways and again, I'm not trying to advocate for one or the other, but having had one recently, the propofol and the prep and all that, it wasn't -- I just have to say, it wasn't that bad.

CAMEROTA: Sometimes it's the prep. Oh, there's always the prep. That's worse than the actual procedure. But think you for reminder. Sanjay, great to see you.

GUPTA: You got it, thank you.

BLACKWELL: Well Florida officials, they say that their governor's "Stop Woke Act" is why they're blocking an A.P. course about African American studies. We'll talk about that, next.



BLACKWELL: There's some outrage growing in Florida after the state blocked a pilot high school AP course on African American studies.

CAMEROTA: State officials used governor DeSantis's controversial "Stop W.O.K.E. Act" to reject the proposed curriculum claiming the college board course violates state law and lacks educational value. CNN's senior national correspondent Sara Sidner is here with more. So, Sara, what is so objectionable? What have they thought is so offensive in this course?

SARA SIDNER, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's interesting, because the "Stop W.O.K.E. Act" and it its W.O.K. --


SIDNER: E. Just in case the teachers out there are like --

But that looks at whether or not CRT specifically is part of the curriculum and they say it is. There are specifics though. We haven't seen the specific things that they are talking about that they don't think should be taught and I'm sure a lot of people would like to see that.

But ultimately, you're talking about the state board -- and this program, the college board, excuse me, they are the people that sort of implement AP so those are high-level advanced placement classes. Those are classes that if you pass them and the test, you get college credit for it. So, it's college level work.

Guess what, CRT is generally taught in college and not just college but law school. So, it is very rare that something like CRT, the actual, you know, teachings of Critical Race Theory would be taught in K-12. Most K-12s do not teach CRT but a lot of people conflate it with a whole lot of other things. That sort of group it into the big thing.

And the big thing that I think a lot of parents have been screaming about and worried about and truly worried about, is there worried that white children will be taught that they are oppressors and that black children will be taught they are victims. And so, that's where sort of the underlying fire comes when you hear CRT, it triggers people because it's been a political lightning rod.

But I want to read something from Henry Louis Gates Jr. And we all know him as a preeminent scholar on American history but specific African American history. Here's what he has said about this.

He says: Nothing is more dramatic than AP -- than the college board launch an AP course in a field that signifies ultimate acceptance and ultimate academic legitimacy. AP African American studies is not CRT. It's not the 1619 project. It is a mainstream, rigorously vetted, academic approach to a vibrant field of study. Signed Dr. Gates Jr.

So, I mean, he is really been looking at this and saying, hey, everything can't be CRT. Let's stop this.

I do want to give you an idea where this came from. Because did you notice we didn't talk about 24 ten years ago?

BLACKWELL: Yes, really.

SIDNER: It's been the last couple of years and that is because of a gentleman named Christopher Rufo who decided to use it as a catch-all for everything that people think is wrong with the education system when it comes to teaching about race. Listen to the interview we had because he tweeted something out and I asked him about it. Here it is.


SIDNER: You tweeted that it is you are going to create something toxic when it comes to the way people think about critical race theory. That's what you yourself treated.

CHRISTOPHER RUFO, SENIOR FELLOW, MANHATTAN INSTITUTE: No that's not -- that's inaccurate, yes.


Critical race theory is intrinsically toxic. I'm merely revealing it and I merely exposing it and I'm merely creating a framework for people to understand it. But it's not that I've turned critical race theory toxic. SIDNER (voice-over): But that is not what he tweeted in March. His

tweet, we have successfully frozen their brand "critical race theory" into the public conversation and are steadily driving up negative perceptions. We will eventually turn it toxic as we put all of the various cultural insanities under that brand category.


SIDNER (on camera): He tweets that out and he says everything that needs to be said. The quiet part out loud. That they want to create this toxic thing that everyone is just going to put everything they think is insane underneath it. That is exactly what has happened in many respects.

BLACKWELL: There's a plan, there's a strategy that's use this to an end.

SIDNER: And it worked.

CAMEROTA: Mission accomplished.

Sara, thanks for all that.

BLACKWELL: All right, "THE LEAD WITH JAKE TAPPER" starts after a short break.