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Biden: Ukraine Aid Should Continue Even If GOP Wins House; How World Sees Undecided U.S. Midterms, Potential Trump 2024 Run; Artemis 1 Mission Delayed As Hurricane Hits Florida's East Coast. Aired 5:30- 6a ET

Aired November 10, 2022 - 05:30   ET





JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have not given Ukraine a blank check. There's a lot of things Ukraine wants we didn't -- we didn't do, and there's so much at stake. So I would be surprised if leader McCarthy even has a majority of the Republican colleagues who say they're not going to fund the legitimate defensive needs of Ukraine.


POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: So that is President Biden addressing concerns that Republicans may cut U.S. aid to Ukraine if they win control of the House. At the same time, Moscow has ordered its troops to retreat from the key southern city of Kherson in a strategic setback for Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Let's go to our colleague Christiane Amanpour. She joins us live again from the ground in Ukraine. Christiane, so good to have you.

I wonder what the response has been to what President Biden just said there?

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Well, I sat down with the president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, yesterday as all these votes were coming in and as this notion about aid to Ukraine was in the air, which is before the midterms in any event.

He believes, like President Biden said, that he has received, even in the last few days, a stream of American delegates -- very important American senators, congressmen, bipartisan -- who have told me in interviews and have told him that they do not believe America's commitment to Ukraine and the battle it's fighting for freedom and for the international rules of the road -- he doesn't think even a Republican-led Congress will stop that.

And also, we've heard the U.N. -- the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. We had the U.S. national security adviser in to see President Zelenskyy, and all of them have spoken about their commitment to this fight. And by the way, it's actually working. I spoke to the NATO secretary- general yesterday and we can see with our own eyes on the ground that the amount of help from the U.S. and its allies in terms of financial or, indeed, weaponry and obviously moral support has made a difference and continues to make a difference on the battlefield.

And there is no blank check. The two senators told me they look at all the money that's going out and they're convinced that it's all accountable for and nothing is being spent in the wrong way.

HARLOW: I wonder if, in the interview, President Zelenskyy spoke about this big withdrawal -- the Russian withdrawal from Kherson.

AMANPOUR: Yes, he did. I asked him specifically about the status of Kherson. I was asking -- actually asking about an impending anticipated Ukrainian counteroffensive. So he said this. In other words, he didn't want to go into details but this is what he told me about that.



VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, PRESIDENT OF UKRAINE (through translator): I'll try to answer in a way that doesn't give you an answer, to be honest, because these planned military actions -- they are discussed in a small circle but then they're executed in silence. And I really want to have an unpleasant surprise for the enemy and not something they are prepared for. So, I'd like to apologize.

But at any rate, our people and your public needs to know that we're working on some very serious steps with a positive outcome for the citizens of Ukraine and all those communities that support peace in Ukraine.


AMANPOUR: So, obviously Kherson vital because of its connection to the port, which is the Black Sea, which is Ukraine's economy, which is vital for Russia's aims as well.

But here is the important thing. Both the president and his aides are saying just hold on. Don't believe the Russians at face value. Don't take what they say at face value. They may be publicly saying that they're withdrawing from Kherson city but secretly, they are taking off their uniforms, they're occupying homes that they've evacuated. They are digging in defensively.

So, the Ukrainians say they're not going to be dragged in --


AMANPOUR: -- to some kind of offensive without being fully prepared.

HARLOW: Yes. That's such an important point, Christiane. Thank you. We'll see a lot more of your interview ahead on the program this morning. Thank you very, very much. Again, more of Christiane's interview in the next hour.

Well, world leaders are paying very close attention to the midterms here in the United States and monitoring what President -- former President Trump is going to do. The view from abroad is next.


WHOOPI GOLDBERG, COMEDIAN, AUTHOR, TELEVISION PERSONALITY: I think the people -- they may not like everything he's done but they like a lot of what he's done.


KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR: That's Whoopi Goldberg weighing in on the midterms as she spoke with Don Lemon. We'll tell you what she had to say about it next.



COLLINS: President Biden says that the world is watching the United States after the midterm elections, seeing whose in power and what voters in the United States are deciding.


BIDEN: What I find is that they want to know is the United States stable? Do we know what we're about? Are we the same democracy we've always been? Because, look, the rest of the world looks to us.

I don't mean that we're all -- like, we're always right, but if the United States tomorrow were to, quote, "withdraw from the world," a lot of things would change around the world. A whole lot would change. And so, they're very concerned that we are still the open democracy we've been.


COLLINS: Those are comments that President Biden made as he is about to leave today to go on a massive foreign trip.

So, let's talk about this with CNN's Bianca Nobilo and Max Foster.

OK, President Biden weighing in on this. He's about to go on this trip. He's also meeting world leaders, the Chinese president included. We know President Putin announced today he won't actually be attending that world leader summit in Bali. But, President Biden reflecting there on what U.S. leadership for other world leaders not just when it comes to the White House but also in the halls of Congress.

MAX FOSTER, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I mean, it's always telling to see what's on the front pages of the newspapers, isn't it? And on a lot of them today it was a massive picture of Ron DeSantis with streamers all around him, explaining who he was and how he is now a likely first contender, really, against Donald Trump in the Republican primary. So all the focus is on him.

And then it becomes a struggle, doesn't it, in the articles because we don't know anything about his foreign policy and what it means for the rest of the world. So I think that's what people are asking today.

BIANCO NOBILO, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. I mean, my family lives in Florida so I've heard of Ron DeSantis and am very familiar with the idea of him potentially for president.

But internationally, if you look at all of the papers in Europe they're filled with questions like cheer Ron DeSantis or (foreign language) Ron DeSantis. So, basically, just who is Ron DeSantis in a variety of European languages. And he's really roaring into the global political public consciousness.

On the front pages of one of Britain's key papers, The Telegraph, this morning, was a picture of him and his family with the byline "Are We Looking At America's Next First Family." So there's a lot of fascination there as well as with the lawmakers that I've been speaking to on the right in Parliament that are quite excited about the idea of DeSantis.

FOSTER: And some glee that Trump has seemed to have not done as well as he may have expected.

HARLOW: That's what I was going to ask you guys. Do you believe that the last 48 hours have changed the perception of the former president -- of former President Trump in terms of his grip on his hold on the power?

NOBILO: I'd say so because when we look at media responding to the results as they continue to come in, the clear consensus was even if we don't know exactly which party is going to hold which, we do know that the clear loser is Donald Trump. That's how it's being framed.

And there's definitely a collective sigh of relief in Brussels among ministers and representatives from European countries who had braced themselves for the results of the midterm and this potential red wave. And that's namely because of a) the support for Ukraine. There's a lot of relief that there -- if Trump has less of an influence over the Republican Party and their policy there.


And also on potential trade tensions because there's actually considerable issues brewing for America and the EU on some protectionist policies and the assumption being that would have got a lot worse had there been a red wave and Donald Trump surged forward.

COLLINS: One question I have is something that President Biden was weighing in on yesterday, which comes to this withdrawal that is happening in Ukraine. It's one of the first major cities that Russia took after the invasion. Biden thinks that the timing of that announcement from Russia was timed to wait until after the midterm elections.

What have you heard there?

FOSTER: I think there's huge relief in Kyiv more than anywhere else in Europe about this result. The wave was a ripple -- the red wave turning to ripple. I think a lot of capitals are trying to make sense of what it means. Obviously, in Europe, largely parliamentary democracies, this idea that you can have a country's leader from a different party from the lower house is quite confusing and how that will affect American policy. If it goes into deadlock then, in their minds, nothing changes.

But I think a lot of people are trying to make sense of that, away from the fact that the midterms are quite confusing for a lot of Europeans, at least.


COLLINS: They're confusing for Americans, too -- don't worry. That's why I worry. We've been breaking it down --

FOSTER: I'll stick to here.

COLLINS: -- at the magic wall all morning.

Thank you both for joining us. We really appreciate that.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Appreciate it.

Well, NASA's highly anticipated return to the moon delayed again. How much longer until the Artemis 1 moon mission can finally lift off.

HARLOW: Also, Hurricane Nicole has weakened a bit -- now it's a tropical storm -- after making landfall in Florida with very heavy rain. The areas that are being hit the hardest -- we'll bring you that next.




SHERIFF BILL LEEPER, NASSAU COUNTY, FLORIDA: We are not going to come drag you out of your house. If you are in the evacuation zone and you don't leave, then it's your responsibility to take care of yourself.


LEMON: Yes. There's the sheriff there of Nassau County, Florida urging residents to get out before Tropical Storm Nicole made landfall as a category 1 hurricane overnight. The storm now unleashing torrential rains, strong winds, and flooding in some of the same areas rocked by the destructive category 4 hurricane -- a destructive category 4 hurricane just weeks ago. Chad Myers joins us now with the forecast for CNN THIS MORNING. Good morning to you. So, how bad is it going to be? Can you predict at this point?

CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: You know, it's still 70 miles per hour at Cape Canaveral, so the winds are still here even though it's been downgraded to a tropical storm off the hurricane that it was -- that it came onshore at 3:00 in the morning at Vero Beach.

The winds are still gusty. We are still going to have the potential for some tornadoes in some of these bigger cells. Kind of water spouts moving on shore. But Port Canaveral, where the cruise ships docks, 75 mile per hour gusts.

And then eventually, it goes to the west and to the northwest and then to the northeast. So this is kind of a long-range storm as we move it on up toward Savannah and then up into the Carolinas. And a lot of rain even for Pennsylvania. Some of these spots across parts of the northeast could pick up four to six inches of rainfall. And in some spots, we know that that's enough to make some flash flooding. So we'll keep watching that for you right now.

There's your possibility of tornadoes across the east coast, moving to the west-northwest at 14 miles per hour right now, Don.

LEMON: I wish it was under better circumstances. It's good to see you, Chad. Thank you -- appreciate it. Thanks.

COLLINS: NASA's Artemis 1 mission has been delayed for the third time because of what Chad was just talking about there -- Hurricane Nicole barreling into Florida's east coast. The rocket does remain on its launch pad at the Kennedy Space Center this morning, however.

Kristin Fisher is live for CNN this morning in Washington. Kristin, what are officials saying there as they are watching this weather forecast incredibly closely?

KRISTIN FISHER, CNN SPACE AND DEFENSE CORRESPONDENT: Gosh, Kaitlan, this rocket just can't catch a break. NASA had already delayed this launch again from the 14th to the 16th. Now it looks likely that there's a good chance they could delay again.

Because Kaitlan -- I mean, let's be very clear about what's happening right now. There is a $4.1 billion rocket -- $4.1 billion worth of taxpayer dollars just sitting on a launch pad just a few feet away from the Atlantic Ocean, totally exposed to the elements, just getting hammered by a cat 1 hurricane, now a tropical storm, of course.

You know, Kaitlan, NASA had said that this rocket was designed to withstand winds of about 85 miles per hour at the 60-foot level. But based on the National Weather Service's sensors, which are actually on the lightning towers at the launch pad, at 5:15 this morning, the wind speed was 75 miles per hour with gusts of 89 -- maximum gusts at 100 miles per hour.

So if those numbers are accurate, Kaitlan, the wind speeds down there have already exceeded the threshold of what this rocket is designed to withstand.

COLLINS: Yes. I mean, we're rooting for the rocket here but we'll see if the forecast improves.

Kristin Fisher, thank you.

FISHER: You bet.

COLLINS: All right, control of the House and the Senate are still undecided as of this Thursday morning. We have several key races that are still too close to call. But the votes are still coming in. They are still being counted. We'll tell you the latest numbers and who they are favoring right now right after this.

LEMON: And we have some new CNN reporting to tell you. Is Kevin McCarthy wasting no time? He's already making moves to become the next Speaker of the House. What is he doing? We'll tell you.


LEMON: The drum's beating -- dom, dom. That means it's show time --


LEMON: -- for us. It's go time for you guys at home.

Good morning, everyone. Good morning, Poppy.

HARLOW: Good morning.

LEMON: How you doing?

HARLOW: I'm great. How are you guys?

LEMON: Good morning, Kaitlan. How you doing?

COLLINS: Good morning.

LEMON: I'm like dad here. Good morning, kids. Time to get up. It's time to get up. It's Thursday, November 10.

Listen, I thought there might be some clarity. Well, I don't know if you're going to like this news. There is still no clarity. The balance of power in the House and the Senate remains undecided at this hour this morning. Some critical races to tell you about that are still too close to call.

House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy has officially announced his intention to run for Speaker of the House, but the expected thin margin Republicans may have is complicating that whole thing.

HARLOW: Also, you won't want to miss this. Our very own Christiane Amanpour sits down one-on-one with Ukraine's President Zelenskyy and the first lady to discuss what U.S. support for Ukraine looks like after all of the midterm votes are counted.


ZELENSKYY (through translator): We would really like to have this bipartisan support remain after the elections.