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Kyle Martino is Interviewed about Wrexham's Promotion; Voters Don't Want Biden or Trump. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired April 24, 2023 - 08:30   ET




POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: This is the moment that Wrexham, a soccer team that has played in England's fifth tier for 15 years finally got promoted out of the national league. The crowd at the old racehorse ground rushing the field as team owners Ryan Reynold and Rob McElhenney celebrated with a huge, long embrace. Very happy. A few -

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Do you know who shot that video?


LEMON: Paul Rudd.

HARLOW: Really?


HARLOW: I love that. The two actors brought the club -- bought the club in 2021, documented their story in the FX documentary series "Welcome to Wrexham." The team's popularity in the United States has skyrocketed. ESPN 2 even televising some of its games. And this summer, Wrexham is coming to America to face two of the biggest clubs in the sport, Manchester United and Chelsea.

With us now, TNT and HBO Max soccer analyst and former MLS and U.S. men's national team midfielder, Kyle Martino.

Good morning.

KYLE MARTINO, SOCCER ANALYST, TNT AND HBO MAX: Paul Rudd filmed that after - after 12 pints, too. What a day they had.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR: His camera work was really good.

HARLOW: It was very steady.

COLLINS: Very steady.


LEMON: Is this a "Ted Lasso" moment for these guys? Like it's kind of -- to get here is crazy.

MARTINO: I mean it's interesting you say that. I think that -- "Ted Lasso's" probably going to be studied in like Harvard sociology courses at one point. In terms of like the inflection point that the number one sport on the planet, we don't have to waste time debating that, the beautiful game in a - in a country full of sports and sports fans that can consume an incredible amount of sports, "Ted Lasso" and this story is opening up, I think, one of the coolest parts of soccer as it exists as an entrant sport. This idea of promotion relegation. This idea of a team playing in not even what's called the football league, right? They're outside of kind of the professional side of the table.


To be able to win and climb the rung and get up to the level where, you know, you can play in Manchester United, you can play against these teams, I think that's the cool part of this story is the sporting meritocracy of promotion relegation as it exists over there.

HARLOW: Love it. What about Paul Mullin, 47 goals this season?

COLLINS: So good.

MARTINO: Yes, that's the other thing. There's a player named James Vardy. The last time we had this conversation is when Leicester went -- you'll remember that story years ago, where they went and won the Premiere League. That was a team that went through the same sort of scenario of climbing up through the ranks. And when you think of it as an American sports fan, you know, we kind of celebrate mediocrity and, like, you - you're the worst team in the league? Well, here's the first draft pick. And so what's wild about these stories is, some of these players that have side jobs, you know, they're kind of semi- professionals. And Jamie Vardy was a player on that team for Leicester that ended up playing for England and becoming a Premiere League winner. So that's the cool part is these players that are no name players become household names by winning and going up.

COLLINS: OK, but can we talk about the promotion relegation thing a little more because there is a clip on the show that explains it, which I think is very helpful for people like me.

MARTINO: Yes, we would need a half an hour to explain it but we'll try to do it in 30 seconds.

COLLINS: Yes, but like I - like I traffic (ph) in like college football. We're like, what is happening here. But I do want to play this to just explain how this works and how different it is.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Imagine, if you will, the NEW YORK YANKEES lose 150 games in a season, they finish dead last, and they have to drop down a league and the following year play against the likes of the Toledo Mudhens and the Sacramento River Cats. And if they keep losing enough, and they keep dropping leagues, then eventually they end up playing beer league softball in Ithaca.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And then I called Humphrey (ph) and I was like, you had a club that had an infrastructure that could at least support an evening of the balance sheet. Can't you theoretically take a team that's in the lowest league and bring them to the top? He said, yes.


COLLINS: So, what's next for them?

MARTINO: I mean staying up, right? So, that's the other thing is this - this moment of elation, you know, when you go up, TV rights are bigger, so you get a little bit more money, but you've got to be careful to spend that money wisely. So, the hardest thing to do when you climb the table and you get up to the next division is, of course, you are the biggest in your pond, now you're in a bigger pond and there's faster fish. So, they're in a tougher division. So, staying in that league is everything. I think that's the - that's the thing that everyone worries about is you get really excited, you go up, and then immediately you finish bottom of that table and you drop back down.

LEMON: Did they spend a lot of money and are they making a lot of money now or are they getting their investment back?

MARTINO: Well, yes, that's a good question. I think this story, if you tried to do the calculus on how they succeeded, they're not the only famous people that went over and bought a lower division team. I mean this has been going on for a long time. I was a part of the ownership with Steve Nash and Stu Holden and Robert Sarver and we bought Mallorca and had back to back promotions and they're in LaLiga now, but 95 percent of the efforts to do what they're doing fail. This is a really hard thing to do. So, the thing they have is storytelling, right?


MARTINO: Now we all know it. Now they -- we all have our phones out. I'm here this morning. You know, five years ago we wouldn't be sitting here telling a story like this. So, you're right, "Ted Lasso," the growth of the game in this country, our women World Cup team being one of the best in the country, this summer hopefully going again to win a World Cup.

So, 2026 is going to be the World Cup in the United States. Stories like this, I think, are going to make people, you know, speculate. Can we go over and buy a team? Can we do this? Because the top division teams, you know, the Fenway Sports Group that owned Boston Red Sox -


MARTINO: And the Glazers who own obviously Manchester United. Some of the biggest European clubs in the world are owned by Americans.

I love that some of these speculative Americans are going, listen, we can tell a big story. The better story is on the way up, not staying there. HARLOW: That's right.

MARTINO: So, this is going to be fascinating to follow.

COLLINS: Staying there is season two. Getting there is season one.


LEMON: Yes. And the -

MARTINO: And winning the Premiere League is 20 years down the road.

LEMON: Poppy just won a big pot of money this weekend from winning the marathon.

HARLOW: Are you kidding.

MARTINO: Are you guys buying a team?

LEMON: So we're going to - I think we should just buy a - cool to buy a team.

MARTINO: I want in. Is that why you brought me?

HARLOW: First of all, I came home from a half-marathon with a medal that everyone gets. And my daughter was like, oh, my God, I'm so excited. We went out to brunch. She saw other people with the medal.


HARLOW: She's like, mom, you didn't win? Everyone gets a medal?

LEMON: Everyone gets a trophy.

MARTINO: Participation. You're like, well, I finished, all right.

HARLOW: That's all I need.

COLLINS: Finished is winning.

MARTINO: There's a lot of people that didn't finish that race.

HARLOW: If these legs at my age can finish we're in - I'm happy.


MARTINO: I wouldn't even try it.

HARLOW: Kyle, thank you very much.

LEMON: Thank you. Thanks, Kyle.


LEMON: Good to see you. So, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in Japan this morning on a quote

international trade mission and answering questions about a possible White House run.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor, polls show you falling behind Trump. Any thoughts on that?

GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): I am not - I am not a candidate. So, we'll see if - if and when that changes.


LEMON: I'm not a candidate.

So, Dana Bash joins us now next to discuss.



LEMON: So, happening this morning, President Biden and his team of advisers are finalizing plans to announce his 2024 re-election bid, while former President Trump is already the expected front-runner for Republicans. But in a new poll, voters say they don't want either Biden or Trump to run in 2024.

Joining us now, CNN's chief political correspondent and co-anchor of "STATE OF THE UNION," the one and only Dana Bash.

Good morning.


LEMON: Thank you. I practiced that.

BASH: It was - such feeling. Thank you.

LEMON: I was at -- in front of the mirror last night going, the Dana Bash.

HARLOW: Dana Bash.

LEMON: Dana, good morning.

So, what do you - what do you think voters are saying here? Obviously, they do not want 2020 all over again. They're like, let's move on to somebody else. Is that what they're saying?

BASH: Yes. I mean, if you look - you look at these numbers, and then you look more deeply into other numbers, if you take Biden out and you take Trump out, it's the same story in that people are looking for, in theory, something new. But in practice, when you look at how this goes down, Donald Trump, right now, we are very early in the process, we cannot say that enough, but right now he is the front-runner among the voters that will make him the Republican candidate -- the Republican nominee, rather.


And Joe Biden is president. So, he has a very big advantage and there is nobody even remotely viable right now who is going to challenge him.

So, that's the way the system works and that's, looks like, if the - if the election were right now, that's what we would get. It's not right now, and that's particularly important again to say when it comes to the Republican nomination process.

COLLINS: Yes, it's very important to note. But there is obviously one person who may be considering trying to challenge Trump for that Republican nomination. That's Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is on a trip that is unusual for a sitting governor to take. This is in Japan. He's doing a multi-country tour. But when he was in Japan, Dana, he was asked about falling behind Trump in some of these polls when it comes to who they want to be the Republican candidate. This is how he responded.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor, polls show you falling behind Trump. Any thoughts on that?

GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): I am not - I am not a candidate. So, we'll see if - if and when that changes.


COLLINS: What did you make of that, Dana?

BASH: I -- he looked down as he --

COLLINS: It's getting a lot of reaction in Trump world, I'll say.

BASH: Well, he was looking down as if he was looking for the place where he could hit the button so that the earth could open and he could - he could disappear. That's what I - I took away from his body language there.

Look, it's -- we expect him to say that, particularly on the international stage, to be fair, where he's there in his capacity as a sitting governor of Florida. He's not going to say anything political or shouldn't say anything political with regard to his own future there.

But the other thing I was thinking about, guys, is, back in May, I believe it was, early June, of 2015. I accompanied then former Florida Governor Jeb Bush on an international trip. He was in Latvia and some of the other former Soviet countries. We actually went to Poland, as well. And it was part of a strategy to show the voters, particularly the Republican primary voters at the time, that he has international chops. That he has foreign policy/national security chops. That's another thing going on here. A big thing going on here with DeSantis and this trip. And we should underline that in a very big way. Whether or not that matters when it comes to what the voters right now are looking for, that is a very big question mark.

HARLOW: I want to talk about your interviews yesterday with both Senator Lindsey Graham and Senator Amy Klobuchar, touched on abortion. But this exchange in particular, and, control room, let's play the shorter Graham sound bite, was interesting, and I think it points to what a number of leaders in the Republican Party are doing to try to describe their view of Democrats on abortion now.

Let's play it.


SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): I think the Republican Party will be in good standing to oppose late-term abortion, like most of the civilized world.

BASH: Just, for the record, Roe went up to viability, but I just want to button this up. The man that you're - the man -

GRAHAM: No, that's - no, no, quit covering for these guys! No, no, no, you're media, you keep covering for these guys. They introduced legislation that allowed abortion on demand with taxpayer-funded - well, you paying for it, the taxpayer, up to the moment of birth.

BASH: Yes.

GRAHAM: That was their position in Washington. That's the law they want to pass. And nobody in your business will talk about it. It's barbaric.

BASH: Senator -


HARLOW: It's not true. And people should watch your full interview with him and you're not covering for anyone.

LEMON: Oh, boy.

HARLOW: But the point about saying abortion on demand up until the term - up until the point of delivery I thought was striking, especially what we heard from Senator Tim Scott on that a few weeks ago.

BASH: Yes, I mean, what Republicans have been doing since Roe was revoked has been saying there's a very important question to ask, not just of us Republicans when it comes to where -- at what point in a pregnancy abortion should be - be allowed at the beginning of the pregnancy, but the question for Democrats, which is, how long through a pregnancy should abortion be allowed. It's a legitimate question. It is a question that I and I know each of the three of you have asked Democrats repeatedly, because this is a policy that has not had to be set for 50 years while Roe was in place.

And so as these states are coming up with their individual new laws, the question is, not just, for example, Florida, you cannot have an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy, but the sort of more liberal states, how long is it OK to do that? It is a legitimate question. It is not legitimate to say we are not asking those questions, because we are.

HARLOW: Right. I actually remember vividly you pressing Katie Hobbs on it when she was running for governor of Arizona over and over for an answer, and many others.


But --

BASH: But -- yes.

HARLOW: Yes, go ahead.

BASH: But the other thing I should say is that -


BASH: What that - what that spoke to is how incredible -- and I think you were getting to this in your question, Poppy, how really complicated this issue is.


BASH: On the raw politics for Republicans.

HARLOW: Yes. Yes.



BASH: The whole reason Lindsey Graham proposed a national ban, even though he said he never would during the midterms, is because he understood how complicated it was politically for Republicans, and it still is.

LEMON: Yes. Dana Bash, thank you. Always a pleasure. The Dana Bash, the one and only.

HARLOW: Thanks.

BASH: Good to see you guys.

LEMON: Make sure to watch the one and only Dana Bash, "STATE OF THE UNION," every Sunday, 9:00 a.m. Eastern.

HARLOW: New data shows regular phone calls are out and voice notes are in, except if you're me and I call everyone. Harry Enten is here with your morning number. LEMON: Owe. Owe. Owe. Owe.

HARLOW: Are you singing, Harry? People think it's like weird when I call them. They're like, why don't you just text me?


COLLINS: Yes, don't call me -


COLLINS: So, how do you like to reach out to your family, your friends, maybe your colleagues?


Do you make a phone call, send a text, or are you part of the new growing trend of those who leave a voice note or a voice memo. Sounds something like this.


HARRY ENTEN, CNN SENIOR DATA REPORTER: Hey, Don, I just wanted to let you know that you should send me some dog photos after this segment because if I don't get one I'm going to be really, really sad.


COLLINS: The voice that you hear there is our CNN senior data reporter Harry Enten, who is here with this morning's number. Not about the number of dog photos you have gotten from Don, but what is the morning number?

HARRY ENTEN, CNN SENIOR DATA REPORTER: All right, so this morning's -

LEMON: And he does send those, by the way. Where are the dogs?

ENTEN: Yes. Where are they? Where are they? Send a voicemail at least weekly, about one in five on average from data in the U.K. and the USA. And more than that it's on the rise. Take a look here. So, OK, voice memo users rising, up 114 percent since 2019 in the U.K., up 37 percent since 2022 on the dating app Hinge. So, voice memos are becoming significantly more popular.

COLLINS: Why are they becoming more popular, Harry?

ENTEN: OK. So, how do people talk daily or more in the U.S.? Text messaging is more popular than making a phone call, 68 percent on the text message, 59 percent on the phone call. But let's say you want support, right? You want that human touch. It turns out that people who got support in the last month via phone call, 51 percent, versus text messaging, just 46 percent. So, I think these voice memos kind of create this middle ground, right? It's the phone call's personal touch without the fear of interrupting somebody's day. And I think that's especially big with those under the age of 30, which is close to my age group, but not quite. LEMON: Yes.

COLLINS: I like it because, yes, it's like a text where you don't have to type it all out, but also like you're not on the phone with them. There's no obligation. You just get off and you go.

HARLOW: I still call them all the time.

LEMON: Yes. Kaitlan and I agree on this. When someone calls, I'm like, what's wrong? What do you want? Why are you calling?

COLLINS: Like, don't call me.

LEMON: Yes, just text me.

HARLOW: Like just saying hi, guys.

ENTEN: Oh, no, no, no, don't ever do that to me. You'll freak me out. No, no, no. Text.

LEMON: Or the people who Facetime out of the blue. I'm like, I'm not answering a Facetime.

COLLINS: Yes, you're like, this is suspicious.



COLLINS: All right, Harry Enten, thank you so much.

HARLOW: Thanks, Harry.

ENTEN: Thank you.

LEMON: Thanks.

COLLINS: All right, and thank you for joining us this morning. CNN NEWS CENTRAL starts right after this break.

LEMON: Bye, everyone.