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CNN This Morning

Biden Expected to Sign Debt Deal to Avoid Default; Desperate Search For Survivors As Death Toll Nears 300 In India Train Crash; Trump Attorneys Haven't Found Classified Document Referred To On Tape; Survivors Take The Stand In Death Penalty Trial Of Robert Bowers; Mexico Police Find 45 Bags Containing Body Parts; Panthers, Golden Knights Face Off In Game One. Aired 6-7a ET

Aired June 03, 2023 - 06:00   ET




VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: And looks up. So good to have you this morning. And we have Rahel Solomon with us.

RAHEL SOLOMON, CNN ANCHOR: So good to be here, Victor.

BLACKWELL: Yes. The start of the day. Welcome to CNN This Morning. It's Saturday, June 3. I'm Victor Blackwell.

SOLOMON: And as you may have heard, I am Rahel Solomon. And today for Amara Walker, thank you for spending part of your morning with us and Victor thank you for sharing the set for this morning.

BLACKWELL: Yes, certainly.

SOLOMON: You know, I've been thinking this for a long time.

BLACKWELL: Yes, we've been talking about it.


BLACKWELL: And so now here she is. It's going to be a great morning. Here's what we're watching for you This Morning.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No one got everything they want. But the American people got what they needed. We averted an economic crisis.


BLACKWELL: President Biden takes a victory lap from the Oval Office after the Senate passes that bipartisan deal to avoid an economic meltdown. The next steps that could soon come as soon as today and why Monday is a critical day in this process. SOLOMON: Also, a desperate search for survivors is underway in India after horrific train crash there that has killed nearly 300 people what we are learning about what led up to this accident and what's slowing down the recovery efforts.

BLACKWELL: Testimony started this week in the death penalty trial of the man accused of killing 11 worshippers at the Tree of Life synagogue more than four years ago. What one of the officers told the court about the moment he encountered the shooter.

SOLOMON: Plus, new details in that deadly Iowa building collapse. We will show you the new surveillance of the moments that wall came down.

And we begin in Washington where President Biden is expected to sign a bill as soon as today to suspend the nation's debt limit through January 2025. Congress approved the measure just days before the U.S. face the risk of defaulting on its debt for the first time in history. The nation reached its debt ceiling in mid-January.

BLACKWELL: But the Treasury Department took extraordinary measures to buy some time for congressional negotiators. Last night for the first time President Biden addressed the nation from the Oval Office and he described the disaster that has been averted.


BIDEN: Passing this budget agreement was critical. The stakes could not have been higher. If we had failed to reach an agreement on the budget, there were extreme voices threatening to take America for the first time in our 247 year history and to default on our national debt.

Nothing, nothing would have been more irresponsible. Nothing would have been more catastrophic. No one got everything they want. But the American people got what they needed.


BLACKWELL: CNN White House of reporter Jasmine Wright is with us now. Jasmine, good morning to you. And when do we expect the President to sign the legislation?

JASMINE WRIGHT, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Yes, Victor. Well, that could come as soon as today but last night, what we saw as President take really --

BLACKWELL: All right, having a technical issue there, we'll get back to Jasmine with that report. U.S. markets soared Friday as Wall Street cheered the debt ceiling bill and the latest jobs report, which showed the U.S. economy added an astonishing 339,000 jobs in men.

SOLOMON: Right, Victor. This was much more than many were expecting all three major averages ending the week higher with the Dow take a look at this jumping 700 points on Friday to post its best one day gain since January.

And despite job gains surging more than expected traders see a growing chance that the Fed will actually pause interest rates later this month. A lot of people would like to see that. CNN's Christine Romans has more now on the strong jobs report.


CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT (on camera): The U.S. job market showing few signs of slowing down just yet another month of historically strong job creation. And April and March were also revised higher bringing this year's job gains to 1.6 million. For context, hiring is now outpacing pre-pandemic levels, just shy of 2 million jobs were added in all of 2019.

Now the hiring in the month was broad based in offices, labs, tech centers, hospitals, nursing homes, bars, restaurants, construction sites, and government offices. The jobless rate jumped three tenths of 1 percent to 3.7 percent, that's the highest since October but it's still in this historically low 3.4 to 3.7 percent range.

Now economists say the jobless rate rose partly because more Americans permanently lost their jobs. And more people entered the workforce, a milestone of sorts for women the share of women aged 25 to 54 in the job market hit an all-time high.


Two possible reasons, hybrid work gives more women flexibility to return to the workforce. Also, high inflation might be making it a necessity for more women to work.

In a potential worrying sign the black unemployment rate jumped from a record low of 4.7 percent in April to 5.6 percent in May, annual wage growth slowed to a still strong 4.3 percent. It's cooling.

But after 14 months now of rate hikes, the labor market is remarkably resilient here, since the Federal Reserve began raising interest rates 14 months ago to cool the economy and slow down the jobs market and inflation, the economy has added an astonishing 5.1 million jobs. In New York, I'm Christine Romans.


SOLOMON: Now, let's go back to Jasmine Wright at the White House. Jasmine, what we were just talking about was that bipartisan debt deal, do we know -- great to have you back up. Do we know when the President will actually sign it?

WRIGHT: Yes, well, the President said last night that he is expecting to sign it today. We know as far as last night it was on its way. But also, last night, what we saw as the President take a major victory lap detailing to the American public just how both key Democrats and Republicans compromise to really avert a potential catastrophe.

Now that was a 180 strategy switch from what we've seen President Biden adopt the last few months and even the last few days. He was very wary of talking about specifics about the negotiations, not wanting to jeopardize anything that's happening in these highly intensive conversations behind the scenes.

But even after the deal was agreed to, Rahel, we saw President Biden not really to say that it was a win, or Democrats at large, basically trying to not jeopardize Republican support that was needed to get the bill passed.

Now that it's past, of course, the President Biden, yesterday in the first time Oval Office address, we saw him do a couple of things. First, we saw him talk about just how important bipartisanship was in all of this process when detailing exactly what is in the bill.

But also, almost as importantly, here's what was not in the bill, the things the democratic priorities that President Biden and White House negotiators fought to keep out of it that we're on the chopping block when it comes to Republican deals, but really, he was focused quite intensely on the bipartisan -- bipartisanship of this deal. Take a listen.


BIDEN: I know bipartisanship is hard. And unity is hard. But we can never stop trying. Because the moments like this one, the ones we just faced, where the American economy in the world economy is at risk of collapsing.

There's no other way, no matter how tough our politics gets, when you see each other as not as adversaries but as fellow Americans treat each other with dignity and respect.


WRIGHT: So now that the threat of economic calamity is no longer hanging over the shoulder of the White House, we have to talk about what comes next. And that that's a large part of that quote that we just heard from President Biden, because as the White House officials see it going into 2024 campaign season.

The President is somebody that they see as somebody who can compromise on policy, but not on principles going forward, someone that should be reelected, because of the way that he is able to manage these very intensive bipartisan negotiations to save the country from potential disaster, like would happen if we would have defaulted.

So I think in terms of narrative forming, that was something that was very much so evident at the oval office last night, President Biden, after months and months of these highly intensive negotiations, really tried to get the final word. Rahel. Victor.

BLACKWELL: Jasmine Wright there at the White House. We got through it. We fix whatever that camera issue was. Thank you so much.

Let's bring it now. Errol Louis, CNN political commentator and political anchor for Spectrum News. Errol, good to see you. So picking up where Jasmine left off. How much is avoiding calamity worth politically? The President took his victory lap? What's it worth for?

ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, yes, good morning, Victor. Avoiding calamity is the Biden signature. It's how he got elected in 2020. What we're going to hear more of I think on the campaign trail, we'll be reminders of what things were like at the height of the pandemic, that the chaos that used to rule in the White House, the uncertainty that people felt about the economy, about health care about the pandemic itself, were things that we don't want to go back to.

And so what you heard in the speech last night, I think was a little bit of a preview of that saying, look, the politics will be hard. There's a lot of bipartisanship. And you know, if you listen closely, Victor, he made all of these references to extremists on of the Republican Party, that is his real sort of target, politically speaking, saying that, look, the extremists wanted to crash the economy. They wanted to do all kinds of things that we fought against, but we the reasonable middle are the folks who are going to govern the country and bring America forward.


So that's a campaign message very much -- as much as it is a governing message.

BLACKWELL: You mentioned the pandemic. So the health emergency is over. The President is now navigated the debt ceiling crisis, jobs numbers consistently strong, inflation below 5 percent lowest in almost two years. The flood of migrants at the southern border that everyone expected after Title 42, that's non-existent. So why are his approval numbers so low?

LOUIS: Wow, look, there are little shadows behind all of that sunshine, Victor. I mean, the migrant crisis has by no means gone away. It's not as bad as people feared. But there are still thousands and thousands of people crossing the border every day. And states and localities are having a very hard time dealing with it.

It's it reaches all the way up here to New York and other northern jurisdictions. So that is still a problem. And it's one that he has not found a solution to. There's no legislation pending, that's going to make that change. And there's a lot of reason to believe that the Congress is not going to take any action, certainly not before the presidential election. So we still got some problems there.

The unemployment rate for black Americans, as we just heard is going in the wrong direction, not all of the arrows are pointing in the right direction. So you know, and then there's the Democratic base that the President has to deal with. We spent so much time talking about the Republican base, there are Democrats who were very, very unhappy about what was given away what has been compromised on, on the environmental front with some of the fossil fuel deals that are tucked into this debt ceiling deal, as well as the fact that student loans, the relief that the President wanted to provide for them is both tied up in court and politically not moving forward as quickly as he would have liked.

So, he's still got a lot of work to do. It's not it's not going to be smooth sailing between now and next November.

BLACKWELL: All right, let's turn toward the Republicans now, Ron DeSantis, making the argument more aggressively rhetorically against Trump, where he says Trump could only serve one term. You Republicans want a candidate who can serve to most Republicans like the policies that came out of the Trump administration that term.

Is that a potent argument? Or is that just the -- the starting round? The opening round? What do you think about making this a point?

LOUIS: It's a rational argument. The problem for Ron DeSantis is that it's a losing argument. I would say for anyone who wants to challenge Donald Trump picture that making that speech to the angry mob on January 6, 2021. And ask yourself how that would have gone across.

And that's just to say that January 6 was the culmination of passions sweeping through the Republican Party, that Donald Trump both fueled and has been lifted by, and anybody who wants to imagine that they can take some shots at him and say that, well, he's inconsistent, or he's not necessarily going to win the election.

They are studying for the wrong test. They're not running against that -- Ron DeSantis acts as if he's running against a man, he's actually running against a movement or in some ways trying to take over that movement. And until he figures out how to do that, I think, you know, pointing out that Donald Trump can only serve one more term I think is going to be far from a winning argument. And it's almost irrelevant actually.

BLACKWELL: Chris Christie is expected to get into the race against that movement, as you call it expected to announce a run next week. Now, we know that there are some people who get into the primary fight, not because they want to be president, it's because they have an issue or they want to sell a book or they want a fat TV contract.

What's your assessment of the Christie campaign, his purpose for getting in the race that is it focused on becoming president? Or is it focused on taking down Donald Trump?

LOUIS: You know, all of those things that you mentioned, you know, TV contracts, and so forth. Ego. I remember vividly, Victor, being on the convention floor in Tampa in 2012. And Chris Christie was at his height of his popularity, back then he was a rock star, people were literally crowding around him, you know, not just members of the media. But everybody.

His moment kind of came and went, things didn't work out for him. He didn't do very well in the 2016 primary. I think he's just trying to recapture some of that, you know, because anybody who looked at it objectively would say, you don't have the funding, you don't have the reach, you don't necessarily have a winning message. And the polling, in fact, has very high negatives for him, unlike all of the other candidates. So, it's really hard to see how he gets off the ground here. But you know, people are people, he, you know, he saw his moment in the sunlight. It's very hard to talk to a convention of people screaming your name, and then just go back to being some guy doing commentary on television like us.

So I think what he's doing is trying to figure out what is out there for himself and if he's got enough followers you know who knows maybe it'll catch fire

BLACKWELL: All right, Errol Louis, good to have you. Thanks so much.


And tomorrow night live from Iowa, Jake Tapper moderates a CNN Republican presidential town hall with former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley. The evening kicks off tomorrow night at 8:00 only on CNN.

SOLOMON: And now to India where a desperate search is underway for survivors of the horrific train crash. Authorities there say at least 288 people are dead, more than 1,000 injured. The crash is one of the worst in recent Indian history and also one of the worst real disasters the country has ever seen.

Videos from the scene there shows mangled train cars and passengers belongings scattered on the ground. CNN international correspondent Marc Stewart joins us live. So Marc, update us on the search and rescue operations.

MARC STEWART, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi there, Rahel, look, crews have had some luck rescuing people from the individual cars. The real challenge, the real concern right now is that people may be trapped under the individual train carriages, the individual cars.

They're very heavy and that is why rescue workers and officials are very concerned that as time moves forward, the death toll may rise. We are hearing stories from survivors and quite frankly, they are very difficult to hear. It's very upsetting. There's no question that this was a traumatic event, including the recollection of this one individual who was really caught in the middle of the chaos. Take a listen.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): 10 to 15 people fell on me when the accident happened and everything was haywire. I will say the bottom of the pile. I got hurt in my hand and also the back of my neck.

When I came out of the train buggy, I saw someone had lost a hand. Someone had lost a leg while someone's face was distorted. Then I caught out of there and since then I have been sitting here.


STEWART: There is a big push right now to get resources to seed including rescue workers doctors, even ambulance and buses to move people around. A lot of people are giving blood.

But Rahel, as you can clearly see from these pictures, this is a very difficult and daunting task ahead.

SOLOMON: Marc Stewart live for us there in Tokyo. Marc, thank you.

And still ahead and update to a CNN exclusive that's after former President Trump is heard on tape talking about a classified documents in his possession Aafter he left the White House. His lawyers now admit they can't find it.

BLACKWELL: It was a week of emotional testimony in the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting trial what officers told the court about their encounters with the shooter and what our legal analysts are watching as this trial continues.



BLACKWELL: Our top stories now we're following this morning at least eight people are injured, two of them critically in Connecticut after a seven storey residential building under construction in New Haven partially collapsed Friday. Fire officials say part of the second floor crumpled while concrete was being poured and it cooled faster than they could spread. Three people were trapped in that debris.


RICK FONTANA, DIRECTOR OF EMERGENCY OPERATIONS, NEW HAVEN: Those persons that were trapped had to be lifted out by the rescue company and the truck companies and insurance companies because of the level that they fell from and through. One of the problems that you have with wet concrete is having to do the searches before it hardens. So the accountability --


BLACKWELL: All the victims are construction workers.

SOLOMON: And in parts of South Florida could see some rain and flooding this morning as tropical storm Arlene weakens and moves south through the Gulf of Mexico with wind speeds of 40 miles an hour.

Arlene is the first named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season which began Thursday and runs until the end of November. Forecasters predicted a 40 percent chance for near normal season this year with about 12 to 17 named storms.

BLACKWELL: Ford is wanting owners of Lincoln SUVs to park their vehicles outside and away from buildings because they could potentially catch fire. Ford officials say the problem stems from a battery monitoring sensor that could get damaged when parts around it or service causing a short circuit and overheating.

Model years 2015 through 2019 are affected. That's a lot of vehicles. Owners are also being advised to take their SUVs to a dealer and have a fuse installed free of cost.

SOLOMON: Lawyers for former President Trump have not found a classified document that he has heard on tape discussing on tape. CNN was first to report the recording where Trump talks about the document.

BLACKWELL: Yes, prosecutors issued a subpoena after asking the Trump aide about the recording. This was before a federal grand jury. The document in question involves a potential attack on Iran. CNN senior legal affairs correspondent Paula Reid has details.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. President, why didn't you take classified documents concerning General Milley?

PAULA REID, CNN SENIOR LEGAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): CNN exclusively reporting former president Donald Trump served with a subpoena in mid-March seeking any records related to the same U.S. military document he talks about on tape just six months after leaving the White House.

DONALD TRUMP, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: Everything I did was right.

REID: Special Counsel Jack Smith, Attorney General Merrick Garland's pick to oversee investigations into Trump trying to track down any additional classified materials still in Trump's possession.

The former president's attorneys turned over some material in response to the Justice Department's request, but not the document in question. The one Trump was recorded discussing in July 2021 at his Bedminster, New Jersey Golf Club.

On the tape he acknowledges he held on to a classified Pentagon document about a possible attack on Iran.

TRUMP: There is no crime, you know, there is no crime.

REID: That tape now in the hands of prosecutors prompting them to subpoena all documents and materials related to Iran and Mark Milley, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.


JIM TRUSTY, TRUMP LAWYER: I am not going to try the case that's being set up by leaks that I don't believe are accurate.

REID: Trump's attorney declining to address where the document is.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Has the document been returned to the National Archives?

TRUSTRY: Same answer.

REID: Throughout the investigation, prosecutors have expressed skepticism about whether they've gotten everything back from Trump over the last year. Trump's attorneys turned over 15 boxes to the National Archives. The FBI recovered more than 100 classified documents from their search of Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate and Trump's team found additional materials in subsequent searches of other Trump properties.

TRUMP: They become automatically declassified when I took them.

REID: Trump denying any wrongdoing. And when asked if he ever shared classified information with anyone --

TRUMP: Not really I would have the right to. By the way they were declassified after -- not that I can think of. Let me just tell you, I have the absolute right to do whatever I want with them.

REID: In contrast, his former vice president striking a different tone after retaining classified materials.

MIKE PENCE, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: Those classified documents should not have been in my personal residence. Mistakes were made.

REID: The Justice Department informing Mike Pence Thursday, he will not face criminal charges for his handling of classified materials.

PENCE: And I take full responsibility.

REID: After a small number of classified documents were found at his Indiana home.

REID (on camera): A Special Counsel also looking into the possible mishandling of classified documents at two locations connected to President Biden. But it's clear from CNN's reporting over the past week that former President Trump is facing a much more significant legal threat, especially after we've learned that investigators have a recording of Trump and it's unclear if the government has the classified document that he claims to have in that tape. Rahel, Victor.


BLACKWELL: Paula, thank you. Emotional testimony some really harrowing new video also never before heard 911 dispatch calls, we have the latest on the trial of the man accused of opening fire at the Tree of Life synagogue four years ago.



SOLOMON: Welcome back. The first week of testimony has come to an end in the federal death penalty trial for the man accused of killing 11 worshippers at the Tree of Life Synagogue in 2018.

BLACKWELL: More survivors took the stand on Friday. Rabbi Jonathan Perlman remembered the moment his friend, Mel Wax, was killed right in front of him. He testified that they were hiding in a closet with two other worshippers when Wax opened to see the -- if the door -- to see if it was over. And that was when he was shot and killed.

SOLOMON: A S.W.A.T. officer described the interaction that he had with the accused shooter Robert Bowers. The officer said he asked Bowers why he did it? And Bowers responded that he had had enough and that, quote, "all Jews had to die". CNN's Danny Freeman has more now.


DANNY FREEMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): This first week of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting trial has been intense, it's been emotional and at times it's been challenging to listen to and to watch. But it has also been the first time that survivors of that mass shooting in 2018 have had the chance to face the alleged gunman Robert Bowers in court.

We've heard opening statements from both the prosecution and the defense. The prosecution hoping to prove not only that Robert Bowers killed those 11 Jewish worshippers, but also that he did so intentionally because they were Jewish. Meanwhile, the defense not disputing that Bowers killed those worshippers, but they're hoping to paint his motives as irrational.

Already, we've heard from more than 12 witnesses including 9-1-1 dispatchers, police officers, survivors of the shooting and family members of the deceased. We've also seen harrowing exhibits like the moment survivors Carol Black and Barry Welber(ph) were able to escape the synagogue after seeing their friend Mel Wax killed right in front of them.

And also the moment, Dan Leger, who was shot in the stomach but survived, we saw the moment he was actually rescued and carried out of the synagogue by first responders. Maggie Feinstein, she's a leader with the Jewish community out there in Pittsburgh, she's been watching alongside family members and victims throughout the duration of the trial, and she explained the reactions have truly been varied.

MAGGIE FEINSTEIN, DIRECTOR, 10.27 HEALING PARTNERSHIP: One of the things about this trial is the scope of it, the number of victims, the number of people who have been impacted is so large. So people have every varying response to it.

Sometimes the healing can begin once you can get through, and all the truths are known, and all of it is out there for the public to know as well. So no longer do you have to hold it on to yourself.

And so, there can be something that can be healing. It also can be incredibly painful. And there is really every degree of difference.

FREEMAN: Now, of note, the defense team has not been cross-examining the bulk of witnesses that we've seen so far in this first week. We're going to be keeping our eye on it to see if that changes in the days and weeks to come. Danny Freeman, CNN.


SOLOMON: And joining us now to talk more about this case is criminal defense attorney and CNN legal analyst Joey Jackson. Joey, good morning, good to have you on the program today. So, as we heard in Danny's piece there, in opening statements, the defense said that Bowers was responsible for the shooting, but then they started to raise questions about motive and intent. What does that signal to you about what their strategy might be?

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes, Rahel, good morning to you. So just setting the tone for this, what had happened was the defendant had offered to plead guilty some time ago. Remember, this occurred in October, 5 years ago, 2018.


And so, the essence of the defense right now is pretty much conceding the fact that their client is responsible right now. I think all evidence points to him being there, all evidence points to him having multiple guns or evidence points him engaging in this carnage and tragedy and horrific circumstance. The issue is whether or not his life can be preserved, predicated upon his plea of guilty, he wanted to take, that is the defendant, the death penalty off the table.

Prosecutors and conferred with victims said no. So what it signals to me with respect to the defense strategy is that, they're willing to concede the actions of their client, however, they're challenging whether or not the motivations were predicated upon hate, predicated upon interference with religious, you know, ceremonies that were occurring at the time, and simply saying that he was behaving in an irrational fashion and perhaps, if they untether it to, they could potentially save his life. But that it seems to me is what their intent is, that is instinct.

SOLOMON: Well, Joey, speaking of the death penalty aspect of this case, the lawyer for the suspect, Bowers' attorney Judy Clarke, she is known for representing some high profile defendants in death-row cases. The Boston Marathon bomber, the unabomber, the 1996 Atlanta Olympics bomber. Does she have a pattern that might be playing out here as well or that could be playing out here as well?

JACKSON: Yes, I think, you know, two things are important. One thing obviously, those cases you cited, very tragic, unfortunate and just horrific to think about. But every case of course is different. And I think that the play here is that, in not cross-examining the witnesses, you don't want to ever as a defense attorney re-victimize the victims.

These were people who underwent a significant event in their life, a compellingly tragic event in their life. And so, cross-examining and antagonizing them with the jury listening and evaluating that is not a good play. The then issue becomes in this specific case, whether that, and not antagonizing the victims and not playing up what they really -- what your client did is going to be enough.

When the shift, I'm presuming there will be a guilty finding to the penalty phase. And so, I think the play is that, to not go too hard in there, when it gets to the penalty phase to talk about other, what we call mitigating factors to try to save your client's life, redeeming qualities of your client if any, that the jury could evaluate based upon the horrific nature of the circumstance, to try to avoid the death penalty. And so, I think that's what the defense strategy is, whether that will play effectively obviously remains to be seen, Rahel.

SOLOMON: And Joey, we don't have a lot of time unfortunately, but really quickly, pivoting to Iowa now, and that apartment building that collapsed where three people still remain missing as of this morning, what type of liability could the building's owner now be facing? We know that the building was already under repair because of some reports before about the structural integrity of the building. In terms of liability, what do you see here?

JACKSON: Yes, I think there could be two different things. First thing, from a civil liability perspective, the importance of that as we look there, I mean, horrific to see. The bottom line is that if you are on notice with respect to the structural integrity of the building, and that you have reason to know and believe and have prior reports that indicate that this should have been addressed, that's a problem.

So it goes to civil liability. The question for me now, Rahel, will be clearly, there is civil liability that relates to monetary damages which families don't care about, they want their loved ones to be safe, many are not. The issue for me is whether there will be a grand jury convened in the future, that will assess whether or not the recklessness here elevates to any criminal liability. So that's what I'm looking for in the weeks and months to come.

SOLOMON: A lot more to watch here. Joey Jackson, great to see you, thank you.

BLACKWELL: This was an awful discovery in Mexico. Authorities found dozens of bags filled with human remains. And now they're trying to figure out who these people are. The latest on the investigation.



SOLOMON: Now to a gruesome discovery in Mexico. Authorities have found 45 bags containing body parts.

BLACKWELL: Yes, authorities say the bodies match characteristics of missing workers from a call center. CNN correspondent Patrick Oppmann has details.

PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Rahel and Victor, family members of seven missing people who worked in a call center in Mexico have been calling on officials to investigate their disappearance. But now it appears their worst fears have come true.


OPPMANN (voice-over): The bodies were found in bags discarded in a ravine. Grisly murders that have shocked even Mexicans weary of the years of rampant violence often connected to drug cartels. Investigators say at least 45 bags were found containing human remains outside Guadalajara, Mexico. Some of the bags had broken open.

LUIS JOAQUIN MENDEZ RUIZ, ATTORNEY GENERAL, JALISCO (through translator): All the bags that we found are closed. And obviously taped, packed. We found some segments on the precipice ravine that we believe that when they were placed or thrown there, some bags must have torn. And that's how we found some segments.

In a preliminary manner, we can say that there are female and male bodies, but we need to wait for the institute to confirm.

OPPMANN: Officials say the bodies appear to match the physical characteristics of some of those seven missing employees of a call center in Guadalajara. But it's unclear how many victims there are. Missing since late May, their family members have demanded police investigate their disappearances.



"We want them alive and well", say family members, as they marched in the streets before the discovery of the bodies, calling on Mexican officials to do more. The families say their relatives went to work like any normal day, but then their phones went dark.

GABRIELA HERNANDEZ, GIRLFRIEND OF MISSING MAN (through translator): At 2:50 p.m., my messages and calls didn't go through, it was only voicemail and the phone was off. After that, there was no more communication with him.

OPPMANN: Mexican officials say their investigation has uncovered alleged criminal activity at the call center, but they have not said if there are any suspects behind the killings.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): The first indicators are, it involves people carrying out some kind of real estate fraud and some kind of telephone extortions.


OPPMANN: The sad reality is disappearances and brutal mass killings happened all too often in Mexico where tens of thousands of people, according to human rights groups are believed to have been murdered and buried in unmarked graves. Just in Jalisco state where this latest massacre took place, 1,500 bodies have been found since 2019, according to prosecutors there.

And throughout Mexico, more than 110,000 people are missing. And while this latest grisly massacre has generated more headlines and outrage than is usually the case, there are no guarantees family members will receive justice. Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has rejected calls to take on the cartels directly.

Saying that the drug war of the years past failed, and what the country needs is hugs, not shoot-outs. But critics of his say, that this kind of horrific violence of bodies being found in a ravine just shows that the policy has failed. Rahel, Victor?

BLACKWELL: Patrick, thank you. This morning, there are more questions about what led to the partial collapse of a building in Davenport, Iowa. Three people are still missing.

SOLOMON: And now, CNN has obtained new surveillance video of the building just moments before the structure began to fall. CNN's Adrienne Broaddus has details. Adrienne.

ADRIENNE BROADDUS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Victor, Rahel, good morning. The surveillance video CNN obtained is from the roof of a nearby building, and it shows what happens in the nine minutes leading up to the collapse. I want you to take a look. Here, you can see that there are at least, five support braces, and pay attention to the one closest to the camera.

It gradually bends minutes leading up to the collapse. About two minutes before the collapse, a large chunk of bricks falls from under the second floor window. Also, a lower portion of the wall crumbles. Now, we're not saying that because that support brace was gradually bending, we're not saying that's what led to the collapse.

Meanwhile, at least, three people are still missing and possibly buried under the rubble, while investigators say, their next step is to move toward recovery. One of the family members of Brandon Colvin(ph), his 18-year-old son is supposed to graduate today. He told me he doesn't know if he is going to be able to go. He just wants to hear the voice of his father. Victor and Rahel.

SOLOMON: All right, Adrienne, thank you. Meantime, coming up for us, as the saying goes, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. That's what they say. And the Golden Knights are hoping that the Stanley Cup will be hanging around for the Summer, we have a review of the final coming up.



BLACKWELL: Stanley Cup finals begins tonight with the Vegas Golden Knights hosting the Florida Panthers.

SOLOMON: Carolyn Manno joins us now from New York with a preview. Carolyn, good morning.

CAROLYN MANNO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning to you both. It's a good time to be from south Florida. I mean, the Heat are in the playoffs too, but on the ice, no matter how this ends, it is going to be a historic moment for the winner of this series. Both teams looking to lift the Stanley Cup for the first time.

For the Golden Knights, this is kind of incredible, I mean, they were founded just six years ago, they were an expansion franchise, and they've reached the final in their very first season, and here they are again. I mean, they were the best in the West this season. Their offense has continued to just amaze us in the post-season, but the Panthers really look like a team of destiny in these playoffs.

They came back from being down 3-1 to beat the Boston Bruins in the first round after the Bruins had just completed the best season in NHL history. So the puck drops tonight at 8:00 Eastern on our sister channel, "TNT". Going to be an exciting series.

WNBA star A'ja Wilson has already brought a championship to Las Vegas. She won the title last season, but now, she is setting an off-the- court goal of eradicating the stigma around dyslexia and putting an end to bullying. In this week's "DIFFERENCE MAKER" sat down with our Coy Wire to discuss that mission a little bit further.


A'JA WILSON, AMERICAN PROFESSIONAL BASKETBALL PLAYER: And that's something that was very hard for me to come to grasps with as I got older. Because a lot of people saw me as this athlete, this five-star athlete that's doing everything that she's doing, but then I didn't want them to think that I had a weakness.

I didn't want them to think that I was not good at something. I had days where I'm like this -- I'm over it, I'm done. It was definitely a process for me just to understand that it's OK to be different, it's OK to learn different, and we all learn different ways, we come from different paths of life, but we shouldn't be judged on that. I knew once I graduated from college, I wanted to start a foundation to help young kids like myself to understand that they're not alone in this process, and that if you had the right resources, you could be able to be very successful in your field.

COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Your foundation also sets out to combat bullying.

WILSON: Yes --

WIRE: Is that something that you experienced at any point in your life?

WILSON: Yes, it was. And I sometimes was on the opposite side of it where I was seeing it, and I didn't know if I wanted to speak up or I didn't -- I let it kind of happen. And I was just in a place where it was hard. And I was just like, you know what? I need to speak up on these things. Especially the world that we're in today with social media, with everyone saying that you have to look a certain way, speak a certain way.

It's very quickly to judge others. And for me, I wanted to make sure that everyone understood that there is no place for that.


Let's be kind to each other, let's love one another because we're only here for a certain amount of time. WIRE: If someone were to tell you back when you were a kid struggling

to read and feeling, you know, like a pariah, that one day you were going to be changing lives in such an impactful way, what would you have said?

WILSON: I would have probably laughed just the way I did. I wouldn't even -- it wouldn't even cross my mind that I would be able to have this impact on the community, dyslexia community or the bra(ph) community, anywhere in-between that I would have this effect on them, I would have probably just laughed in their face because once again, that's little A'ja who didn't liked to sweat, who didn't want to do anything, but just be herself, to now be a game-changer, no pun intended in this world and my community, it's definitely a big deal.


MANNO: You know, we need these role models in sports for these kids who feel like they're on the outside looking in. And one in five children are said to struggle with dyslexia, so being diagnosed early is really important, and that is exactly what Wilson's foundation is aiming to do.

BLACKWELL: Yes, certainly, some good work there. Carolyn, thank you for the story. President Biden makes his first Oval Office address to the nation now after weeks of tense negotiations on Capitol Hill. He could finally sign the debt ceiling deal as soon as today. We'll have the latest next.