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Pollster On 2022 Midterms: I Was Wrong; So-Called "Lehman Bros Of The Crypto World" Loses Fortune; CNN On The Ground As Residents In Liberated Kherson Get Aid. Aired 7:30-8a ET

Aired November 14, 2022 - 07:30   ET



POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: They go on to say that party will have to adjust its policy on abortion and its message for 2024.

FRANK LUNTZ, POLLSTER AND COMMUNICATION STRATEGIST: You can never ask people to adjust their policies based on elections. Sometimes principles -- sometimes, principles are more important and you have to be able to convince the American people that even if they disagree with you on that principle, you are worthy of their support.

So I challenge they are changing their position. That said, they have to accept that if they are going to be that strict on abortion they are going to turn off younger voters, which voted overwhelmingly Democrat, and they're going to turn off women, which voted significantly Democratic -- and that's the way it is.

There are times when you don't follow the polls. There are times when you look the people straight in the eye and you say enough. I hear you. I know where you stand. I'm simply against it. But then, accept what happens to you on Election Day.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Since you mention young voters --


LEMON: Kaitlan, let me make this point, please -- pardon me -- just before because I don't want it to get passed.

I just -- a presidential adviser said, I was telling the POTUS the entire time that the streets were not saying what the polls were saying and that young people were coming out.

LUNTZ: That's a given. That's not so insight -- I don't -- I don't want to be critical of that person. Yes, the young people are voting but the young people still vote on a much smaller percentage than their parents, and a really tiny percentage compared to their grandparents.


LUNTZ: So, to me, I want to look forward. I want to take where we stand right now and focus on what it means over the next few weeks and next few months.

Everybody's rehashing the past and that's why people have had enough of Donald Trump. He wasn't rehashing last week; he was rehashing what happened two years ago.

We need to look forward. That's what the American people are asking of all of us. OK, it's done -- we voted. We have a really, really split government right now. Now let's move forward and see if we can get something done.

COLLINS: I want to -- I want to get to the Trump aspect of this because I know you just did a focus group this weekend with people about who they prefer. But on the polling, I think people do not trust polls right now.

LUNTZ: They shouldn't (PH).

COLLINS: They do not trust them after 2016. But how do you fix it?

LUNTZ: I don't. You don't. You guys --

COLLINS: The polling is irrelevant is what you're saying?

LUNTZ: You guys spend way too much time focused on who's going to win and lose and trying to predict that.

LEMON: Isn't that what you do? You're a --

HARLOW: Said from the former pollster.

LEMON: Now, hold on.

LUNTZ: I don't do that. I don't do that. I haven't worked in a -- in a political campaign in more than a decade. I used the numbers that were given to me by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the Republican Congressional Campaign Committee. And no matter what they say --

LEMON: It's like how can you say that? Your tweet just said --

COLLINS: But here's --

LEMON: -- before I predict this person is -- this group --

LUNTZ: Yes --

LEMON: -- will win and this group will win.

LUNTZ: -- based on their polling --


LUNTZ: -- not my polling.

COLLINS: But -- well, so then here's my question on that, which is -- because this is correct. People are saying well, the media said this, the pundits said this. Democrats also thought they were not going to fare very well on Tuesday night. Now they're obviously happy that they did. But they were bracing for losses.

How did their pollsters fix this? Is there any point in polling, essentially, anymore if you can't get it right?

LUNTZ: What a great lesson to the media.

LEMON: It's a very good question.

LUNTZ: Stop focusing on the who's up and who's down and start trying to understand why. Give us insight. Give us information that we can use.

People watch this show because they're more informed by giving you their 10 or 15 or 30 minutes. They watch because they really care about what's going on and they want to stay up-to-date on all the events that are important. They're not asking you to project the future. They want to fully and completely understand the present.

So let's go back to using polling for what it was meant to do -- insight, information, knowledge -- and if you're lucky, wisdom. But you've got to show that --

LEMON: (INAUDIBLE) to the MAGA stuff.


LUNTZ: You've got to show that focus group because that's what's really important.

COLLINS: We do. We do. Because you spoke to these -- these are Trump voters --

LUNTZ: Yes, all of them.

COLLINS: -- and here is what they think about what they want 2024 to look like.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To me, he's a much more polished version of Trump. He's willing to kind of fight back and willing to --


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- and willing to go after it, but he does it in a way where he doesn't degrade or say things that are just off-putting.


COLLINS: That's talking about --

LEMON: They're talking about DeSantis.

LUNTZ: Yes, and almost every one of them -- they all voted for Trump two years ago and almost all of them would vote for DeSantis today. They appreciate what Trump did. They appreciate his agenda. But they don't appreciate him as a person and they're actually worn out with him as a person. And I believe that if Trump goes ahead and announces tomorrow, he doesn't understand the world that has been created over the last week.

And Trump's vicious, brutal attacks -- not just of DeSantis but also of Glenn Youngkin, the governor of Virginia -- the Republicans are beginning to say OK, enough already.

HARLOW: Who he insulted with a racist slur.

LUNTZ: Yes. I appreciate all that you did, I respect what you went through, but go home.

HARLOW: What else did you learn? I mean, that's one of the reasons we love having you is because you'll be so candid about when I get it wrong but also because you spend so much of your time speaking with these people. What else did you learn from that --


LUNTZ: We did a --

HARLOW: -- focus group that surprised you?

LUNTZ: We did a study for the American Conservation Coalition about climate. I'll give you an example.

The Republicans seem to be hostile to climate legislation. The young people, in particular, and the party in general has to tackle climate. It doesn't mean that they have to go all in with the Biden proposal. It doesn't mean that they have to shut off exploration for energy. But it does mean that if they don't respect and appreciate, and make specific tangible efforts on the climate issue, then the voters are going to continue to reject them.

And it's not just climate. It's on the economy. It's on taxes. It's on the budget.

LEMON: It's on abortion and we saw that play in the election.

But listen, we've got -- we're running out of time before I go. So is this -- everyone asks is this -- Trumpism is over, right? Don, is Trumpism over? Is this the last gasp of Trumpism?

LUNTZ: This is "Friday the 13th" part 15. Freddy always comes back just when you think he's gone.

LEMON: Geez, right.

LUNTZ: So --

COLLINS: Also, didn't we just say we shouldn't be projecting what's going to happen?


COLLINS: We'll wait to see what the voters decide.

HARLOW: Thank you, Kaitlan.

LEMON: Well, this was for winners --


LEMON: -- but, I mean, if you look at the donors that are running away from him, if you look at the media that Trump supported -- right- wing media -- the Murdoch media who are moving away from Trump, I think that's a fair question. Is it -- you know, are people just over it? Are they over it?

LUNTZ: They're over --


LUNTZ: -- the language. They're over the meanness. They're over the ugliness.

They really -- more than anything else, I'll give you one word to close this segment -- unity. That is what they're looking for right now. And the more that we can help them achieve that the better good we are doing.

LEMON: But again, we'll see. I think you all are right. We have to see what the voters decide.

Thank you --

LUNTZ: "The Kids Are Alright" -- The Who.

LEMON: Yes. Thank you. Thank you, Frank. Appreciate it.

Straight ahead, breaking down the dramatic rise and fall of one of the top cryptocurrency companies. What it means if you invested.

COLLINS: And former Vice President Mike Pence is calling out former President Trump's actions on January 6.


MIKE PENCE, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And the president's words were reckless. It's clear he decided to be part of the problem.




LEMON: I want to show you something that's just into CNN. Take a look now. This is back in Ukraine to this dramatic scene in the liberated city of Kherson right now. This video taken moments ago.

Residents there getting humanitarian aid days after the Russians left. We have been seeing emotional scenes play out of reunions and families telling their stories of survival.

CNN's Nic Robertson is there on the ground. We're going to go live with Nic in just moments.

COLLINS: All right. He is being called the Bernie Madoff of crypto -- a multi-billionaire who lost most of this wealth in a single day. This morning, the stunning implosion of the digital currency company known as FTX that is triggering new investigations.

CNN's Brynn Gingras is live with the latest on Sam Bankman-Fried. Brynn, the story is fascinating and I am obsessed with what's happening and where this is going forward.

BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I mean, Bernie Madoff now, but it was just really a few months ago when FTX's CEO was on the cover of Fortune and the magazine questioning if he was the next Warren Buffett. Now, as Kaitlan said, his company has imploded and FTX is at the center of multiple investigations. The disastrous downfall also shaking up confidence about the future of digital currency.


GINGRAS (voice-over): In a matter of days, FTX, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, filed for bankruptcy. The company's 30-year-old CEO Sam Bankman-Fried resigned, and his $16 billion fortune erased. Bloomberg has called his meteoric fall from grace "one of history's greatest-ever destructions of wealth."

Bankman-Fried has publicly apologized. "I'm piecing together all the details, but I was shocked to see things unravel the way they did earlier this week," he wrote on Twitter.

Now, allegations of mishandling of customers' funds have emerged. Two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters at least $1 billion in customer funds have vanished. Bankman-Fried secretly transferred $10 billion of customer funds from FTX to his trading company, Alameda Research, the sources told Reuters.

RANA FOROOHAR, GLOBAL BUSINESS COLUMNIST AND ASSOCIATE EDITOR, FINANCIAL TIMES: In some ways, this collapse of FTX is the Lehman Brothers moment of the crypto world. It is a classic financial crisis.

GINGRAS (voice-over): The downfall of the crypto exchange began earlier this month when serious questions were raised about the financial health of the company. Those questions caused many customers to cash out. Then, a failed merger between FTX and its rival platform Binance caused more strain on FTX. Binance backed out of its plans to acquire the company, saying its problems were beyond our control or ability to help.

The Justice Department and SEC are launching probes into FTX. The company, which is headquartered in the Bahamas, is also being investigated by Bahamian authorities over potential criminal misconduct. And the White House addressing the need for oversight.

KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Without proper oversight, cryptocurrencies -- they risk harming everyday Americans. But the most recent news further underscores these concerns and highlights why a prudent regulation of cryptocurrencies is, indeed, needed.

GINGRAS (voice-over): At its peak, the crypto exchange was worth $32 billion and benefited from superstar endorsements from Tom Brady, Gisele Bundchen, Naomi Osaka, and Steph Curry.

STEPHEN CURRY, NBA PLAYER, GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS: I'm not an expert and I don't need to be. With FTX, I have everything I need to buy, sell, and trade crypto safely.

GINGRAS (voice-over): The NBA's Miami Heat had its venue renamed as FTX Arena just last year, but now that name is coming off the building.

It even ran an ad during this year's Super Bowl featuring Larry David.

LARRY DAVID COMEDIAN: Ehh, I don't think so -- and I'm never wrong about this stuff.


GINGRAS: And look, stakeholders losing big here -- investors and customers. Reports are those with money couldn't even withdraw from their accounts and may not recoup their money.


The company now in Chapter 11 and it's possible what comes next is Washington stepping in and finally passing regulations on this very much wild, wild west industry. So this is the next step, right? What's going to happen? How is Washington going to respond? But this story unraveling so quickly, as Kaitlan pointed out.

COLLINS: Yes. I think Mark Cuban tweeted something interesting about it. He said he believes it's basically a same version of a different story that we're seeing right now.


LEMON: Thanks, Brynn.

HARLOW: Thank you, Brynn.

LEMON: Great to have you -- appreciate it.


HARLOW: I know.

ROMANS: At least there was a sheriff. HARLOW: So let's --

LEMON: You know her.

HARLOW: Let's talk about that --

LEMON: Christine Romans is here.

HARLOW: -- with our chief business correspondent Christine Romans.

There is no sheriff. And one of the things when you think -- we brought up Bernie Madoff. When you think about, sort of, cash and assets being stolen and lost, it's hard to get people -- it back, but it's not impossible. Crypto makes that even harder.

ROMANS: Well, it's invisible. I mean, crypto is this invisible currency that's not a currency. That's an asset that is not regulated at all. There are no regulations on crypto.

And for a long time, people said crypto was -- you know, it was a hedge against inflation. Well, no, it's not. It is not a vehicle that you can measure value with. It is a speculative tool.

And there are a lot of people who put a lot of money on the next big thing. Everyone's going to get rich in crypto. And you've seen that it is a -- you know, the billionaire boy wonders -- especially this one -- don't appear to know what they were doing.


COLLINS: But can you talk to us about what set up this downfall because a lot of people have said, actually, you could see this coming?


ROMANS: So, he was sort of an altruistic hero, right -- a progressive champion. He was one of the big donors of the midterm elections, you know? He was giving to liberal causes for the Democratic election.

COLLINS: He's been at the White House.

ROMANS: He's been at the White House. He's somebody who everyone thought wow, this guy really -- this guy really knows what he is doing. I mean, he's been called the next J.P. Morgan. Ironically, J.P. Morgan also spawned a whole bunch of regulation as well -- so maybe in that sense, he is. That you're going to have Washington coming in and trying to regulate him.

Essentially, he was running this exchange and also running a hedge fund. And the allegation here is that using the cryptocurrencies in his exchange in the hedge fund and then this started to unravel when people found out about it and thought they wanted their own cryptocurrency back. And then there's essentially an old -- and old- style run on the bank.

LEMON: But we made a comparison. I mean, he's not -- it's not -- it's not exactly analogous to Bernie Madoff --


LEMON: -- because Bernie Madoff was a Ponzi scheme. This was sort of people that feel duped by this person and that is -- that's the analogy there.

But it's part of a larger context here because you have Elon Musk --


LEMON: -- who is kind of melting down with Twitter.


LEMON: You've got Mark Zuckerberg and what's happening now with metaverse. And this is sort of -- is this the fall -- at least, a spotlight of something to do with the sort of billionaire --

ROMANS: It's --

LEMON: -- genius of that maybe it's not so genius? I don't know.

ROMANS: It's like the billionaire trifecta fail with those three.

And I guess the throughline there is that maybe the wunderkind geniuses don't actually know what they're doing, right? And the --

LEMON: Or don't know everything.

ROMANS: Or don't know everything, right, or have -- or have no breaks and now they're crashing their cars.

I mean, you look at Elon Musk, for example. I mean, what has happening at Twitter? Is Twitter going -- I mean, he bought it and now they're already talking about bankruptcy? What is happening with Twitter? It's blowing up before our very eyes.

And he's got SpaceX and he's got Tesla. Big questions about how stretched he is. I mean, he's riffing with randoms on Twitter and this is the world's richest man. You know, there's a serious responsibility when you have shareholder money in some of his other endeavors, right?

And then you've got Mark Zuckerberg who -- again, another billionaire boy wonder. But his company is the worst performer of the S&P 500. Stock is down 66 percent --

LEMON: Woof.

ROMANS: -- over the past year. This is a widely-held stock. There are real mom-and-pop investors who are -- who are being hurt here.

And there's the other question there is does he really have the grown- ups around him on all of these cases? Do we just see -- you know, stamp somebody with a billionaire status and think oh my gosh, they're so smart. Look, they dropped out of college and created this company. Well, actually, you need to have regulation and restraint, and vision. And I think we're starting to see that kind of unravel in those cases.

The contrast, I think, would be Jeff Bezos. Listening to him today on this show, here is somebody who stepped back. He's now -- he is running the board but he's running -- he's stepped back from day-to- day operations with a bit of a vision. So I think he's kind of the grown-up in the billionaire bunch right now.

LEMON: But he has -- as Poppy points out, he's got issues when it comes to workers and unions.


LEMON: But, I mean, obviously --


LEMON: -- no company is perfect. But as Poppy has been pointing out as well, all of those people losing their jobs at Twitter and at the social media companies -- it's crazy.

ROMANS: I mean, to fire and then rehire at Twitter --


ROMANS: To fire and then rehire -- to try to roll out blue check, $8.00 a month, and have to roll it back, it just looks so unfocused, undisciplined, and just sloppy, right?


COLLINS: I mean --

HARLOW: We need more leaders like Christine Romans with restraint and judgment, and from Iowa.


That's all I have to say.

COLLINS: But in the meantime, we'll just keep you around to talk about these federal probes and what's going to happen to --

ROMANS: Oh my gosh, there's so much going on.

HARLOW: So well said this morning, Romans.

LEMON: Thanks, Christine.

HARLOW: Thank you --

COLLINS: Really fascinating.

HARLOW: -- very much.

ROMANS: Thanks, guys. HARLOW: Switching gears, soon, we will hear from President Biden after his bilateral meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping. You'll see that live right here.


LEMON: And we're heading back out to the newly-liberated city of Kherson as residents there get shipments of much-needed aid after months of living under Russian control. These images just coming into CNN.


HARLOW: We have this new video just in this morning and it shows residents in the newly-liberated city of Kherson getting humanitarian aid days after the Russian troops were forced out.

Let's head back to Ukraine. Our Nic Robertson is on the ground there. Nic, it just must be remarkable to experience.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: It is. It's very remarkable, and it's remarkable because over the past few days we've sort of witnessed this euphoria, this excitement, and people coming out more and opening up more about what they've experienced.


And to see the first aid -- and it's happening just over here. Our cameraman, Clayton, filmed the pictures -- filmed the pictures that you have there.

This truck has been provided by a church here in Ukraine. They're the first to get in here, remembering that the government has had to demine some of the roads for the truck to get here. They've been handing our bibles. They were handing out candles, which will really be needed here at night. And I know that some people here will need that spiritual uplift from the bibles as well. They've been through a terribly traumatic time of fearing every time they go out on the streets they could be picked up and taken and beaten.

But they're getting bread and water as well, and these are basics. For you and me and for most people around the world, bread and water -- we take it for granted. Here, it isn't. This is the first clean drinking water people will have had here for about four or five days now. So this is important and it is going to help.

Maybe you can hear that explosion going off there. The Ukrainians still are firing out across the river here just a few miles away where the Russian troops are still dug in.

HARLOW: Nic Robertson, thank you very much again for being on the ground for that reporting.

LEMON: Well, Democrats have secured the Senate majority but they still have their eyes on one more seat. Up next, the Senate majority leader, Chuck Schumer. He's going to join us live this morning and you don't want to miss that.



JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And as you know, I'm committed to keeping the lines of communications open between you and me personally, but our governments across the board. Because our two countries are -- have so much that we have an opportunity to deal with.