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Biden Pushing Forward With Campaign Despite Growing Concerns; Interview With Representative Gerry Connolly (D-VA) About Biden; Trump Urges Biden To Stay In, As Dems Ponder Replacing Him; Trump Attempts To Distance Himself From Project 2025; Keir Starmer New British P.M. After Landslide Labour Win; At Least 4 People Shark Bitten In Texas, Florida This Week; Rare Shark Species Found In Japan. Aired 4-5p ET

Aired July 06, 2024 - 16:00   ET



CHEN (on-camera): -- they're seeing Hollywood, and now they're experiencing an American Fourth of July.

Natasha Chen, CNN, Los Angeles.

WHITFIELD: Wow, that's a homerun many times over.

All right, on to basketball now, the WNBA, and star Caitlin Clark just became the first rookie in league history to record a triple double. The Indiana Fever phenom scored 19 points, 13 assists, and 12 rebounds in the team's victory today over the New York Liberty.

I'm Fredricka Whitfield. Thanks so much for being with me today. The NEWSROOM continues with Pamela Brown right now.

PAMELA BROWN, CNN ANCHOR: You are in the CNN NEWSROOM on this Saturday. I'm Pamela Brown in Washington, and it is a busy day.

We begin with President Biden pushing forward with his reelection campaign despite growing calls for him to step aside. Last night and more than a week after his alarming and shocking debate, frankly, by many Americans the president sat down for his first televised interview with ABC News where he once again dismissed the debate as a, quote, "bad night" and denied concerns from members of his own party.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Every one of them, they all said I should stay in the race. Stay in the race. No one said, none of the people said I should leave.


BIDEN: It's like, they're not going to do that.


BIDEN: Yes, I'm sure. Look, I mean, if the Lord Almighty came down and said, Joe, get out of the race, I'll get out of the race. The Lord Almighty is not coming down.


BROWN: But even as the president doubles down on staying in that race, more Democrats are publicly calling on the 81-year-old candidate to suspend his campaign with one lawmaker telling CNN, quote, "We're screwed."

CNN's Arlette Saenz joins us live from Wilmington, Delaware, where the president is spending the day before heading back to the campaign trail.

Arlette, does the Biden campaign really think that that interview was enough damage control in this moment?

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Pamela, so far the Biden campaign has expressed confidence following that interview as they really view it as one of the key steps to try and to reassure voters that President Biden is up for a second term, but so far that interview alone has not appeared to quell any of the very, very serious doubts within President Biden's own party about him continuing in this race.

Now the president was defiant in that interview, insisting he is not backing down from this race despite the growing calls for him to do so. The president also notably said that he would not take a cognitive test at a time when many Americans have concerns about his age and health in the wake of the debate. The president also pushed back on the idea that top Democrats want him out of this race at the moment.

And then the president also gave this answer that has frustrated some in the Democratic Party. Take a listen.


STEPHANOPOULOS: And if you stay in and Trump is elected, and everything you're warning about comes to pass, how will you feel in January?

BIDEN: I would feel as long as I gave it my all and I did the good as job as I know I can do, that's what this is about.


SAENZ: Now so far five House Democrats have called for President Biden to step aside in this race. The most recent one came this morning when Congresswoman Angie Crag from Minnesota released a statement saying that the president's debate and also what she believed was a lack of a forceful response in the days after have led her to believe that she is not confident he would be able to run a campaign and win against Donald Trump.

Now this morning, President Biden called into a phone call, a meeting with the co-chairs of his campaign. I spoke to one of those who participated in the call, Senator Chris Coons, who told me that President Biden sought on his input from his team during that call. It comes at a time where Coons believes Biden will soon start engaging in more direct engagements such as town halls or press conferences to try to make his case to the voters.

So President Biden certainly is facing growing questions and growing pressure from within his own party about his decision to stay in the race. But so far the president has been adamant that he will stay in this through November.

BROWN: Yes. It's so interesting, though, because publicly he's adamant, but clearly privately he's still seeking input, right, from his closest advisers about the way forward here.

And Arlette, there has been some questions surrounding a pair of radio interviews the president did on Thursday. The radio host spoke to CNN's Victor Blackwell this morning revealing the questions were provided by Biden aides. Let's play that clip.


The questions were sent to me for approval. I approved to them.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: OK. So the White House sent the questions to you ahead of the interview.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They got several questions. Eight of them. And the four that were chosen was the ones that I approved.



BROWN: How is the campaign defending this decision to send questions ahead of time, which by the way as a journalist, that's never happened to me. You know, that's not typical of any sort of interview with the reporter, right?

SAENZ: Yes, Pamela, this was an interview that was coordinated through the campaign, and a campaign spokesperson today not denying that they provided questions, but they insist that there were no conditions for this interview. And I want to read you a bit of that statement. They said it's, quote, "It's not at all uncommon practice for interviewees to share topics they would prefer. These questions were relevant to the news of the day. The president was asked about his debate performance, as well as what he delivered for black Americans. We do not condition interviews on acceptance of these questions and hosts are always free to ask the questions they think will best inform their listeners."

Of course, this is all a very interesting dynamic that's at play at a time when the campaign -- the president's allies have said that he should be engaging in more unscripted, off-the-cup type of moments and so we will see, you know, what further reactions we hear specifically to this. But so far at least one of those radio host who conducted interviews with president Biden that aired on the Fourth of July said that they were provided a list of questions to choose from, and that radio show host did in fact do that.

BROWN: Right. And just to be clear, there's a difference between topics being provided, which does happen in actually specific questions, which is what happened in this case, according to these radio hosts. And like you said, the campaign denied.

Arlette Saenz, thank you so much.

So joining us now is Democratic Congressman Gerry Connolly of Virginia.

Congress, first of all, I just want to get your reaction to the latest development. I was just talking about with Arlette that these questions were provided to these radio hosts beforehand for the president to interview. What do you think about that?

REP. GERRY CONNOLLY (D-VA): Well, it's not my practice, but it's, you know, not unheard of. And I would say, yes, we're kind of piling on right now. I mean, what look at the sycophancy of FOX News with Trump and his acolytes. Do you think they don't practice the questions and go over the questions before an interview in depth? So I wouldn't have done this if I were the Biden campaign but I sure wouldn't allow this to be overblown, especially when we're looking at that alternate network, FOX, which has become nothing but an intimate part of the Trump campaign.

BROWN: But for the context, you know, the context does matter and in this case, these are the first pairs of interviews after the concerning debate to try to prove to, you know, the conservative voters that there's nothing to see here. There's no issue, and now we're finding out the questions were provided in advance.

I'm just wondering, as you watched the ABC interview, how does evoking Lord Almighty, God Almighty as the only way he'll leave the race sit with you and sit with a party that is still reeling from his debate performance?

CONNOLLY: Yes. I think there were -- I mean, I think the president, you know, gave a good 22 minutes by and large, but I do think there was some troubling aspects to that interview, one of which is what you said. You know, invoking God Almighty as the only intervention that is going to dissuade him from going forward, I hope Joe Biden didn't really mean that.

Look, this is a very human process, not a divine process. While we all hope for the blessings of God, politics is a very human business and we have to make some very hard decisions going forward, and so does he. And so interacting with your fellow human beings, your family, your White House staff, the campaign staff, stakeholders, delegates, elected officials, political leaders, the public, that's what has to happen. Not God.

And the second troubling aspect was when asked if you lose to Trump and if there's this big risk that you could, what will be your take on that? And his answer was, well, I will have given it, you know, my goodest. You know, that's not an adequate answer. And that's not a reassurance that Democrats want to hear. And Joe Biden can and must do better than that.

BROWN: I'm curious, you know, are you satisfied after seeing President Biden in that interview despite, you know, the issues you had with what he said, the content of what he said, but, you know, there was that interview and his appearance at that rally in Madison yesterday and he's had other appearances. Are you satisfied that what happened on that debate stage was episodic versus a more serious underlying condition or do you still have questions today?

CONNOLLY: You know, I decided that, you know, I wanted to give the president space and the dignity of recovery time.


And I'm hopeful that this week and next week provide him that space and that recovery time. We're going to see him on stage, on television, in rallies, at a press conference, and of course, at the looming NATO summit where 32 heads of state or heads of government are going to be in town and he is the host. So he's going to be on stage a lot. And we'll all have an opportunity and frankly, the international community will have an opportunity to evaluate what they see and what they experience.

BROWN: So it sounds like you still haven't made up your mind yet, right? Is that fair to say? You're not calling on the president to step aside.

CONNOLLY: Oh, yes.

BROWN: But you still have not made up your mind about what the situation is, where things are?

CONNOLLY: Pam, I was hired by Joe Biden to work in the U.S. Senate. I've known him for 45 years. I know his family. I've been to his home. I wrote speeches for him and bills for him and amendments for him. I travel with him. This is a man I revere and I am not about to throw him overboard because of a bad experience. I want to give him every opportunity to try to recover.

Having said that, at the end of the day, we cannot afford to make a mistake about Donald Trump. We've got to put our best foot forward and I'm hopeful that's Joe Biden. I'm open to the fact that sadly that might not be. I do believe that what happened at the debate was more than a bad night and that's why that image is so indelible in so many minds and that's why so much alarm has been raised about what does that mean.

And President Biden, the burden is on him to prove, yes, I stumbled. It was terrible. I had an episode, but I've recovered from that.

BROWN: Why are you concerned it was more than a bad night? And I think it actually holds more significance coming from you because, as you said, you've known him for many years, you used to write speeches four him. You've worked with him, you revere him. So help us better understand why you think that.

CONNOLLY: I've never seen Joe Biden in that kind of posture. He clearly was struggling for words and concepts and sentences. That can happen if you're overly tired. That can happen if you're ill. But we have to know that that's what it was and that's all it was, and, you know, to the president's credit he's trying to rise to the occasion and do that. But he has to be open to the fact that at 81, he is showing his age and is that such an insurmountable handicap?

And I hope not. That he can't win the election in November. That's the real Democratic existential question that's underway right now in terms of trying to answer.

BROWN: It sounds like there's a lot of kind of therapy or discussion going on within the Democratic Party, right? You have five Democratic House members who have actually come out to tell Joe Biden to step aside. You have many others behind the scenes expressing concern. You have not many who were coming out forcefully and saying no, he should fight and stay in there. I mean, you know, Fetterman center. Fetterman is one of those.

But you have to wonder, was the president -- did it strike you as the president being correct when he said all the Democratic leaders have told him to stay in the race and fight? Have you actually heard that yourself? Is that the sense you're getting? Bring us behind the scenes.

CONNOLLY: I think there are lots of pockets of conversation and you were right to refer to it as like family therapy. The Democratic family is going through a therapeutic process with the head of our family. How are you, are you in fact, you know, up to continuing running the family as we look to the next four years, and you need to kind of demonstrate that. It's got be manifested.

I think a lot of people are giving the president that space and giving themselves that space to have that evaluation. I will say calling for him -- by issuing a statement and calling for him to step aside I understand what motivates people to do that and why they might do that, and the frustration they're experiencing, and they're looking at their own districts.

But knowing Joe Biden, I guarantee you, all that's going to do is get it back up. It's not going to achieve the purpose for which those statements were issued.

BROWN: Last question for you.


Given what you just said that people call him to drop out is just going to put his back up. Some have said today after that interview especially that he's in denial and he is just being defiant because he does not want to be pushed out. Do you think he has clearly seen what is transpiring right now and what the stakes are? Do you think he is being honest with himself?

CONNOLLY: Certainly, President Biden is very aware of the stakes. You know, he's in a kind of defensive posture right now, understandably, the whole world kind of descended on them after that debate and this is a proud man with an extraordinary record and a history, a personal history of always exceeding expectations. He's had to overcome all kinds of hurdles and impediments and tragedies in his life to get where he is.

He's not about to be pushed off the stage because some people are disgruntled or feel that he's in denial. Having said that, we need a White House to help, you know, bridge the denial and the early defensiveness to have a deeper dialogue so that we can arrive at the right decision about moving forward at defeating Donald Trump in November. And we've got to get to that point. And hopefully time will give us this week that opportunity. And hopefully the White House can move beyond the defensive posture for the president and for the country.

BROWN: Yes, because you've made clear in another interview you don't think the White House has reached out to members of the House like you.

Congressman Gerry Connolly, thank you for that really candid conversation and this important consequential moment, particularly for you and your Democratic Party. Thank you.

And new tonight, former president Trump who has been relatively quiet this week is now weighing in on the so-called called Project 2025. This radical plan to overhaul the U.S. government. What Trump says about his involvement. Plus Beryl growing stronger before hitting the Gulf Coast of Texas. We are tracking this storm. A lot of people in the storm's path. And at least four people bitten in shark attacks in Texas and Florida since the Fourth of July, what we're learning about the cause.


BROWN: Texas officials are urging people on the South Texas coast to evacuate with Tropical Storm Beryl barreling toward them. Beryl is expected to start strengthening again tonight, building back to hurricane strength before it hits the coast late tomorrow night. Residents are being told to be ready for dangerous conditions.

CNN meteorologist Chad Myers is tracking the storm from the CNN Weather Center.

Chad, what's the latest?

CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: It is still a 60-mile-per-hour storm. The hurricane hunters were in it earlier and didn't find anything more impressive than that. The storm is in very warm water, so the potential for it to get much bigger is there, but also with that very warm water, middle 80s, if you want to go swimming in, I don't suggest it with all the sharks out there this week, because all this water is getting pushed on land and they don't know what to do, and you're kind of in the way.

We also have shear out there. That's the brake pedal to try to stop this warm water from making it a bigger storm. So officially the storm is going to get to about 85 or 90 miles per hour, making landfall along the Texas coast. It will be a smaller storm if it's on the left side of the cone. It'll be a larger storm if it's on the right side of the cone because it'll have more time in the water. But what we're seeing now is that push-pull, which one is going to be more important.

And in the overnight hours, Pamela, typically the shear will go down, which means the increasing intensity and wind speed has a higher potential to go up.

BROWN: So what is in store for this season, if this is already happening so early in the season?

MYERS: Yes. This I think is probably not that unusual. A cat one in the Gulf of Mexico. But what's unusual is that this was at one time a category five storm, so about September 1st should be our first category three or higher. This happened July 1st. We are two months ahead of schedule because of how warm this water is in the Caribbean, in the Gulf, in the Atlantic, and so on.

Plus now, we're adding in La Nina, which also reduces the amount of shear that I just talked about. And so yes, it's because we have a very long and dangerous season for the Atlantic and the Pacific.

BROWN: Chad Myers, everyone should buckle up. Thank you so much.

So ahead, Trump is urging Biden to move forward. What? Why is he weighing in? Why is he staying in this? What the Trump camp is trying to do with uncertainty still swirling around Biden's reelection campaign.

You're in the CNN NEWSROOM.



BROWN: Some Democrats may be reconsidering Joe Biden as their nominee, but his opponent is hoping he will stay in the race. Donald Trump posted on Truth Social that quote, "Joe Biden should ignore his many critics and move forward. He should be sharp, precise, and energetic just like he was in the debate," end quote.

CNN's Steve Contorno joins us now.

All right. What is Trump's strategy here, Steve?

STEVE CONTORNO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, clearly he's stirring the pot with a mocking post like that, Pam. But what I will say when we talk to people in and around Trump's campaign, many of them do believe that Trump's best path to victory is if Joe Biden remains in the race. Now, I also pointed out that we are now entering the second week of coverage focused on Joe Biden's debate performance. And while the Trump campaign has been happy to let the focus remain on

all the Democratic hand-wringing, they also have some very important dates coming up on the horizon. They have the rally on Tuesday, another one next weekend. I think any day now he's going to name his vice president. His convention starting a little over a week from today. So I think there is also some questions coming from the campaign.

You know, how long is this going to overshadow the race and their summer plans. And Trump obviously maybe getting a little restless in the meantime.

BROWN: Trump, for his part, is also trying to distance himself from Project 2025. He randomly weighed in on that. I think it was yesterday. So Project 2025, for those of you who don't know, it's a group of conservative proposals that are put forward by the Heritage Foundation which are meant to reshape the federal government to most effectively carry out a right-wing agenda.


What is he saying?

STEVE CONTORNO, CNN REPORTER: Well, and that proposal is 900 pages long and it's quite, quite large, and it has a lot in it.

But Donald Trump is trying to distance himself from some of the aspects of it.

He wrote in a trolled Truth Social post, quote, "I know nothing about Project 2025. I have no idea who is behind it. I disagree with some of the things they're saying. And some of the things they're saying are absolutely ridiculous."

Now it is quite difficult for him to totally distance himself from Project 2025 and the people behind it. Many of them used to work for his campaign. There are a lot of thought leaders in the region Republican and conservative movement that he has surrounded himself with over the years.

The person who is running it used to work in his White House. In fact, I was at an event earlier this year where Trump spoke and so did the director of the Project 2025 project. And that person, Paul Dans, said that if Trump wins, he hopes to get back working for his former boss again.

So even as he's trying to distance himself from this organization, because what they've put out there has raised lot of alarm bells, you know? There's a lot of it that is closely aligned with Trump.

Especially as it relates to immigration and trying to scale back the size of the federal government, you know, getting the so-called deep state out of the government.

There's also some issues that have been a focal point of the Biden campaign and Democrats trying to tie Trump to them, especially as it relates to abortion.

This organization says that certain abortion medications and contraceptives should not be as so easily available.

So those are the things he is trying to distance himself from at the same time that this is an organization very close to him in many ways -- Pam?

BROWN: Sure is.

Steve Contorno, thank you so much for helping us better understand that.

Joining us now is Larry Sabato, the director for the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia and editor of "A Return to Normalcy, The 2020 Election that Almost Broke America."

So, Larry, do you think Trump is scared of a different Democratic candidate replacing Joe Biden?

LARRY SABATO, DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR POLITICS, UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA: Yes, I do. Because, for one thing, any replacement candidate, whether it's Vice President Kamala Harris or one of the governors we've been hearing a lot about, that individual is going to be a heck of a lot younger and more vigorous than Donald Trump.

All the emphasis has been on the age of Joe Biden. Donald Trump is 78. And actually, if he's elected to a second term, at the end of that term, he would be older than Joe Biden is right now.

I think if you watch Donald Trump carefully, you can see the effects of age there, too. The energy level is lower. And he has some obvious health problems. We don't get any reports from his doctors either.

BROWN: Yes. And we have been noting that as well. He certainly has -- sometimes says stuff that makes no sense. He meanders. He gives coherent -- incoherent sentences.

And it's interesting when you bring up his age and how he's dealing with the age issue with Biden.

This is what he said last week at a rally in Virginia.


DONALD TRUMP, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Joe Biden's problem is not his age. It's not his -- anything really. He's got no problem other than it's his incompetence.


BROWN: Is Trump saying away from the age question, you think? Because he isn't that much younger than Biden?

SABATO: Of course, he is. Of course, he is. He realizes he's vulnerable, too. And inevitably, at what right now all the press attention is on Joe Biden's problems and Joe Biden's age.

But you know how the wheel turns. Press coverage and the political opponents will inevitably get around to Trump's age. And guess what's coming up? The Republican convention.

That would be a great opportunity for people to cover the other side of the story. The fact that Donald Trump is no spring chicken.

BROWN: That is true. But to be fair, I think what you saw on the debate stage when it pertained to Joe Biden, it concerned a lot of people.

Because it went beyond sort of the typical signs of aging that we've seen, frankly, from both men, right? The typical things that we come to expect. So I just want to point that out.

And that is why I think there's still conversation and fallout from that more than a week later.

As it pertains to Trump, Trump is also attempting to distance himself from the conservative policy proposal known as Project 2025. You just heard me talking about that with Steve.

Do you think this is a smart strategy for Trump in order to win over Independence -- over Independents? What do you think?


SABATO: Well, he's trying to head off the controversies that will happen on account of this, frankly, frightening report, frightening. People should take a look at it, although it's very long.

Of course, you can be sure that Mr. Trump didn't read it either. He didn't read his own book before it was published.

But there are frightening things in there, Pam. And the reason people should be concerned is because the people, some of them, who worked on this worked for Trump in the past, as you mentioned, and will work for him no doubt in his second term.

Trump is bringing in a much more radical group than he did in the first term. Those establishment Republican figures that gave us some hope that Trump would be more mainstream than he turned out to be, they're all gone.

Trump doesn't want them again because they didn't jump when he said jump. Now, the people coming in, not only are more radical in their thinking, but they will do precisely what Donald Trump tells them to do.

So look at that report because it's about post-constitutionalism, post-constitutionalism. The law for the Constitution only extends to the parts they agree with.

Kind of like elections. They only like the elections they win.

BROWN: All right, Larry Sabato, thank you so much.

SABATO: Thank you.

BROWN: And still ahead tonight, the U.K. has a new prime minister after Labour's landslide election victory. We look at the p.m.'s first big challenge and what it could mean for the U.K.'s relationship with the U.S.

You're in the "SITUATION ROOM" -- you're in the CNN NEWSROOM.




BROWN: Newly elected British prime minister, Keir Starmer, has gathered his cabinet for their first official meeting, telling his colleagues they have a huge amount of work to do.

There is no adjustment period in Britain. Starmer's first big test on the world stage is just three days, when he attends the NATO summit here in Washington.

CNN's Nic Robertson has more on the landslide win for the left and what's ahead for the new P.M.




NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR (voice-over): Britain's new Prime Minister, Keir Starmer, and his Wife, Victoria, taking their long-awaited steps to Number 10 Downing Street, 14 years since his Labour Party was last in power.

KEIR STARMER, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Whether you voted Labour or not, in fact, especially if you did not, I say to you directly, my government will serve you.

Politics can be a force for good. We will show that.

ROBERTSON: His party securing a massive landslide majority in Parliament. They needed 326, got 412.

STARMER: With respect and humility, I invite you all to join this government of service in a mission of national renewal.


ROBERTSON: A hard reality though. Only around 35 percent of voters supported Labour. And turnout was low, less than 60 percent. Many in the U.K. losing faith in their politicians.



ROBERTSON: Outgoing P.M., Rishi Sunak, stepping down as P.M. and Conservative leader.

RISHI SUNAK, FORMER BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I have heard your anger, your disappointment, and I take responsibility for this loss.

ROBERTSON: Sunak's Conservatives handed a long-anticipated humiliating blow, 365 seats won at the last election shredded to less than half that this time.

Significantly, Liz Truss, who served a disastrous 49 days as prime minister in 2022, became the first former British leader in nearly 100 years to lose their seat.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I am very sorry --

ROBERTSON: The pro-Independent Scottish National Party cut from 48 seats to nine.

Nigel Farage, a major Brexit advocate and friend of Donald Trump, winning a seat for the first time, along with a record for additional seats for his anti-immigration party.


ROBERTSON: And the centrist Liberal Democrats, 71 seats, 63 seats up on the last elections.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a major landslide.


ROBERTSON: But nowhere were the celebrations bigger than among Labour supporters.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sir Keir Starmer, Your Majesty.

ROBERTSON: Keir Starmer, known by some as "No Drama Starmer," a lawyer and former director of Public Prosecutions came late to politics.

Now, the hard work of governing begins. Ministers arriving to be handed their new portfolios.

Rachel Reeves, the U.K.'s first female finance minister or chancellor of the Exchequer, David Lammy, once very critical of Trump, the new foreign secretary.

(on camera): Yet, despite all the change and what it may mean inside the U.K., U.K. foreign policy is unlikely to change significantly.

Lammy has reversed his comments about Trump. The party promising to work with whomever is in the White House on NATO, Ukraine and Israel.

Nic Robertson, CNN, London.


BROWN: Our thanks to Nic.

Ed Luce joins us now. He is the U.S. national editor at "The Financial Times."


Thanks for being here with us.

So Keir Starmer will meet with world leaders at the NATO summit in Washington next week. What can we expect from him on the foreign policy front?

EDWARD LUCE, U.S. NATIONAL EDITOR, "THE FINANCIAL TIMES": That's going to be one of the issues that hasn't divided British politics as Ukraine. That's been a bipartisan, cross-party consensus matter. So there's not going to be any big surprises from Britain.

He's pledged to increase Britain's defense spending to 2.5 percent of GDP from the 2 percent NATO target. His new foreign minister, the foreign secretary, who just saw there in that report, David Lammy, is a strong trans-Atlanticist. He went to Harvard.

And so I expect, you know, Britain's going to -- I mean, Starmer is going to be the most popular leader at this summit because he's just won a massive mandate and that's no not a common thing nowadays.

And he's center left. And Britain, for a change, is not a country that's going off the rails. It looks like a stable centrist government with a massive mandate.

A little bit like Angela Merkel, Germany's leader, had at the start of Trump's presidency. So I expect he's going to be a much sought-after person.

But there's no doubt about it, the news is going to be about Biden.

BROWN: I'm wondering what you think about the election we saw there where, you know, a move to the center left for the U.K.

Now, we should note Nigel Farage, of the Reform Party, did pick up some seats. But this is a move to the center left, right, in the U.K.

Now, contrast that with the surge of right-wing populists -- populism across Europe.

LUCE: Yes, that's a big contrast. I mean, amongst the other leaders who will be there at the 75th NATO summit in Washington next week. But, of course, Emmanuel Macron, the president of France, who called snap elections in which the far-right are surging. It's not clear yet -- the second round and final round occurs tomorrow

Sunday. It's not clear yet whether they will have enough seats to form a majority.

If they do, his presidency is kind of sunk by the far-right and by his own error in calling that election.

Olaf Scholz, the center-left social Democrat leading Germany's government, is looking very weakened after the European elections where, again, the far right did pretty well. His coalitions looking unstable.

And of course, talking of the big democracies, the real focus is on President Joe Biden.

And the wide expectation -- it might be wrong -- but the wide expectation, at least on the European side of the Atlantic, that Trump is at the moment looking to be on course to regain the presidency in November.

So Starmer is very much the odd man out. But the, I think, popular, much sought- after comforting odd man out.

BROWN: Yes. I was just speaking to a Western -- a former Western official who was saying that that really is the consensus and the NATO allies are terrified because they really believe that Trump will be the next president.

And there was a lot of concern about that. And they don't want to speak up publicly because I also don't want to draw Trump's wrath.

So of course, we'll be watching all of this play out here in Washington next week.

Ed Luce, thank you.

Up next, what's behind a string of recent shark attacks?



BROWN: In less than 24 hours, two shark attacks were reported at this Florida beach, both in shallow water. The two men bitten were both treated at a local hospital for their injuries. Thankfully, not life- threatening.

While in Texas, two people were bitten in the waters off of South Padre Island on the Fourth of July. And then two more people were hurt while trying to help them.

Joining us now is wildlife biologist and shark expert, Forrest Galante.

In the past month, we've heard of several shark bites in the waters off Florida. Is this usual shark activity or has it been increasing? And I guess I get confused because you hear, oh, sharks aren't

dangerous, they're not really interested in humans. But then this happens.

FORREST GALANTE, WILDLIFE BIOLOGIST: Sure, Pam. And I feel like we hear this every summer, right?

BROWN: Right.

GALANTE: It's right around this time of year when people start flooding to the beaches. And you see it in those images that you guys just showed. There are tons of people in the water and at the beaches. I mean, look at that beach.

And when you have that many people in the water in an area that is not our domain and belongs to the sharks, you're going to have instances where sharks and humans cross paths.

And what's going on specifically in the summer is the sea is warming up. Bait fish are coming in shallower and shallower and the sharks are coming in to hunt for those bait fish as their metabolism is increased due to the heightened see temperatures.

And so when you have that many people together where sharks are hungry, you are likely to have a couple of negative encounters. And that's what we're seeing here.

The fact that that one, I think, the bull shark in Texas bit four people and then, over here in Florida, in New Smyrna Beach, there were two other instances.

Those are just a coincidence of the time, but also attributed to how many people happen to be in the ocean at the same time.

BROWN: Yes, that one shark really seemed to be on a tear.

So we have to talk about Shark Week. You traveled to Japan, home to the largest diversity of shark species on the planet. What did you find?

GALANTE: Well, we found just that. We found an incredible array of unique and diverse sharks coming up on our show, "Alien Sharks Goes to Japan," which really refers to one species in specific, the Japanese angel shark, which is a critically endangered winged animal.

And in doing so, we had some of these absolutely incredible encounters, like you're seeing here, where we're actually helping give birth to velvet dog fish as they came up from the deep sea encountering horn sharks.


All kinds of incredible unique, bizarre species that otherwise really don't get much attention on the big screen. So it's really cool to be able to showcase such a diversity of these amazing animals.

BROWN: Yes, it certainly is.

Forrest Galante, thank you so much.

And don't forget, Shark Week starts Sunday on our sister network, Discovery. And you can also stream it anytime on Max.

Coming up, the new Biden campaign strategy, unscripted events and interviews with media, are not going exactly as smoothly as perhaps they want.

Reaction coming in after the president's interview with ABC, as a radio hosts who interviewed Biden says aids provided questions in advance.

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