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CNN This Morning

One-on-One With GOP Presidential Candidate Doug Burgum; Lionel Messi Coming to play in U.S.; Holloway Suspect Leaves Peru Prison, headed to U.S.; Air Quality Plummets As Smoke Blankets East Coast. Aired 7:30-8a ET

Aired June 08, 2023 - 07:30   ET



PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN ANCHOR: I was going to say I understand and watch the -- your announcement, many of those issues, minus the North Dakota origin, are what several candidates are laying out as key priorities, key issues -- key issues they wanted to solve. I think the point that Rob Porter was making that I tend to agree with is you either have to do something kind of insane to get a lot of earned media attention, which doesn't seem like your brand at all, or you're going to have to spend a lot of money over the course of the coming weeks and months so which is it of those two?

BURGUM: Well, I just reject the premise on that. When I started into the software business in the -- in the early part of the industry, the first trade show, I went to Comdex. We, you know, picked up the trade show manual and there were 64 companies trying to do the same business plan. And when you -- if you're trying to differentiate yourself, you don't start out by attacking your competitors when you're an unknown. You have to make sure that people know that you've got a quality product, that you -- that you've got solutions that are important to them and that's the message that we're going to focus on.

HARLOW: Let's get into some policy questions, and we're so glad to have you on for the first time on CNN this morning, Governor. As Governor, you signed one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the country. It's an abortion ban at six weeks. You wrote in your Wall Street Journal op-ed yesterday, though sort of more broadly, just in general, about federalism saying we need to return power to the states. Does that mean as president, you would not sign a federal abortion ban of any kind?

BURGUM: That's correct. I think the -- the decision that was made returning the power to the states was the right one. And I think we're going to have -- we've got a lot of division on this issue in America. And what's right for North Dakota may not be right for -- for another state, Minnesota, California, and New York. I think it's important that the Federal Government pushed the decisions back to the local level, whether that's the state, whether it's a school board, whether it's a city council, that the best decisions are made locally.

One of the most important things the CEO can do is to really prioritize what that organization should focus on. And the Federal Government has got a limited set of -- of powers that they're supposed to focus on. One of those is, of course, the border, the national security. And there's so many things that the Federal Government does related to the economy. And I -- I think that's where -- that's where as president, I would have to focus their time.

And we -- the 50 states are actually like 50 platforms of innovation. Innovation has driven our country and we keep trying to come up with one-size fits all solutions for almost everything.

HARLOW: That is -- that is one of the most direct answers we've heard from Republican contenders so far on that question, very clear. I appreciate it.

You also have made a point not to campaign on culture war issues. But what's interesting is that most recently, you've signed at least eight laws focusing on the transgender community. And I want to ask you about one, because just two years ago in 2021, you vetoed a bill that would have severely restricted, just would have completely restricted trans children from playing in sports. And you said at the time, this bill would unnecessarily inject the state into a local issue by creating a ban with a myriad of unforeseen consequences.

Why did you sign a near similar ban this time around? Two years later, you completely reversed course and I'm interested in why.

BURGUM: Well, it wasn't a -- it was not a course reversal. It was basically the same principle, which is two years ago, we had a great organization, the North Dakota High School Athletic Association. And their job was to ensure fairness in all sports, both girls' and in boys' high school sports and they were doing their job.

And so when I vetoed it two years ago, I just said, hey, the state doesn't need to be in this space. They've -- they enhanced their rules to make sure they were ensuring fairness in girls' sports. This year, our legislature felt very strongly that they wanted to put into code what the rules were that the state association was doing. And it was overwhelmingly supporting our legislature. And again, this is a case where I respect the different branches. And so basically, we're carrying on the policies that were -- were in place.

HARLOW: Just to be clear, SB-1249, which was the one you signed, now seeks to ban transgender students, including Kindergartners from playing school sports consistent with their gender identity. Two years ago, House Bill 1298 sought to ban transgender kids, K through 12, from playing on school-sponsored teams of their identifying gender and that's the one you've vetoed.

MATTINGLY: I do want to ask, and sorry, you got a couple of seconds. I want to get one more question in but go ahead and respond.

BURGUM: No, I was just going to say, I mean, the key here is ensuring fairness in girls' sports. We did that two years ago and we did it again this year.

MATTINGLY: I do want to ask, I'm going to stun you here, and I'm going to ask about the former president, which, as you head into Iowa and New Hampshire and the facts of the political press follow you around, probably going to have to get fairly used to that. My question, though, is less about his role in the campaign and more about your view of the seemingly potential indictment. You know, we have -- we have the news of the target letter.

Mike Pence, last night, the Vice President and former Vice President, CNN Town Hall, said he did not believe the President should be indicted, should be charged. He obviously is not looking at the specific evidence the prosecutors are. What's your view on that at this point?

BURGUM: Well, I just think there's an entire industry with lawyers, pundits (ph), analysts. There's a lot of information that's unknown in these cases, whether it's about President Trump's documents or President Biden's documents. And I would just leave that for all them. I mean, everything else is just speculation. I'm sure it makes for good cable news. But our campaign is going to be focused on -- on the economy, on energy, and national security, and we're going to be focused on the future.

I know people want to spend a lot of time talking about the past. But we're going to be talking about the future because that's what matters to this country.

MATTINGLY: Do you think if the former President is indicted, he should still be a potential Republican candidate for President or Republican nominee for President?

BURGUM: Well, I just think there's a lot of voters out here that are going to have to decide who their candidate is. That's what the democracy does. And there's a lot of folks that are wondering whether or not these processes, you know, if the Justice Department have become politicized. Then I think that's -- that's what the America is going to be sifting through that. But we're going to be focusing on -- on the policies and the approaches that we know can help drive America forward.

We've got a mission to help improve every American life. We can do that by focusing on the things we're going to focus on. And we think Americans are interested in how their lives can be improved as opposed to some of the other topics that may be more backward-looking. But we're going to be looking towards the future.

HARLOW: Spent a lot of time in your state, both Phil and I have and it's a wonderful place. Thank you very much. Governor Doug Bergen. Please come back.

BURGUM: Well, thanks, Poppy. We're always happy to have you and Phil here anytime.

HARLOW: Thank you.

MATTINGLY: Thanks, Governor. We appreciate it.

All right. Well, the question a lot of people this morning are asking is how dangerous is it to actually breathe in the smoke throughout the East Coast? Is it dangerous for my family, my children, my pets? Good news, Dr. Sanjay Gupta will join us live to give us some of those answers.

HARLOW: Plus, international soccer superstar Lionel Messi stunning the world, announcing he's coming to play in the U.S. after turning down an offer from the southeast.


MATTINGLY: And welcome back. This just in to CNN. Joran van der Sloot, the prime suspect in the 2005 disappearance of American teenager Natalie Holloway, has left a prison in Peru on his way to the U.S. Here he was just moments ago leaving that prison in Lima where he's been serving a 28-year sentence for the murder of a Peruvian woman. Now he's expected to board an FBI jet and travel to Birmingham, Alabama where he will face new charges of extortion and fraud in connection with a plot to defraud the family of Holloway.

Natalie Holloway was last seen alive 18 years ago leaving a nightclub in Aruba with van der Sloot and two other men. Her body has never been found.

HARLOW: This also just in, the FAA has issued another ground stop at New York's LaGuardia airport due to low visibility as some 75 million people remain under air quality alerts across more than a dozen states due to smoke from Canadian wildfires, the City of Philadelphia right now also seeing hazardous air quality.

Joining us now at CNN, Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Dr. Gupta, thank you for being here. I have never seen something like this and yet we're hearing this morning from our correspondents and experts that we may need to buckle up because we might see this more this summer. How dangerous is it?

SANJA GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think that the way to think about this is when you're just thinking about air, breathing in air, it's 21% oxygen and, you know, mostly nitrogen, and now you add all these particles to that. So just sort of visualize. That's what you're now breathing in. And some of these are really tiny particles. They're different sizes, but it's these really small ones that you can then breathe into your lungs that -- that people sort of fundamentally get. It can irritate your eyes, things like that.

But what it can also do, because they're so tiny, it gets down to the base of your lungs, potentially even into your bloodstream, that can cause clotting problems. People who have underlying heart disease that has not yet been problematic could suddenly find themselves having issues with their heart. So these people are most at risk. People who -- who -- for respiratory events, for cardiovascular events, even for pregnant women, there's a slight increase in preterm birth risk.

So that -- that's the real problem and-- and young and old are the ones who are going to be most at risk. But everybody's at risk, as I think you guys are alluding to when you just step outside. So it's -- it's a problem, you know. And I think, again, trying to imagine breathing in that slurry mix is really the biggest concern here.

MATTINGLY: You know, and you lay that out and I'm going to be completely candid, seeing people with masks, seeing government officials say, stay inside. There's a level of and I'm being dead serious kind of PTSD that I assume a lot of people will have right now. But it's important, given what you just laid out, what can people be doing right now to protect themselves?

GUPTA: I think if you fundamentally think about this as a big weather event, which it is, you would sort of approach it the same way. So first thing, you know, check the air quality in your area, just like you check a weather map. is a way to do that, and you can find out just by putting in your zip code what is the actual air quality.

But you know, the -- the basic things are going to be the most recommended, stay inside when possible. When it comes to masks, the previous sort of guidance was wear masks indoors and now they're talking about wearing masks outdoors. But the fundamentals about them, it should be a good, high-quality filtration mask, an N95. It should fit well. That's where these masks really came from initially was from the environmental world, so they can be quite helpful in these situations.

If you have asthma, you're going to be particularly at risk. There could be a recommendation from your doctor to use a rescue inhaler about 15 minutes before you go outside as opposed to using it when you already develop symptoms. And then really making sure, as we've talked about throughout the pandemic, of improving the air quality inside, you know, inside spaces as well, your home or your work using HEPA filters and things like that.

If you can see the smoke, if you can smell it, you're breathing in those particles I just tried to give you a visual of, and that's what you're trying to avoid.

HARLOW: Sanjay switching topics because you have a fascinating new interview on your podcast. This is with us, Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, and it's all about his I think it's just an alarm bell that he rang a few weeks ago about the crisis facing us because of social media particularly facing our children.

GUPTA: Yeah. You know, this is such a fascinating topic, and as you well know, both of you know, I have three teenage girls. So social media and devices and how to navigate that world, I mean, it didn't exist when I was a kid so it's unprecedented. But just how to figure it all out is a challenge. And you know, one of -- and people there's potential concerns. There's potential benefits. How do you sort of weigh all that? The Surgeon General has an advisory, as you know, and the Surgeon General, you typically think about, you know, big things, opioids and nicotine and things like that. I wanted to understand where is he placing his level of concern when it comes to social media? And I asked him specifically about that.


GUPTA: This is your experience, but how worried are you when people hear something coming from the Surgeon General's office, they think of you know, smoking, you know, opioids, things like this. Social media, is it at that level of concern for you?

VIVEK MURTHY, SURGEON GENERAL, UNITED STATES: Yes, I would say yes, it is. And -- but it's more complicated because with smoking, and you know, which was an issue that our office, Office of the Surgeon General has been engaged on for decades, and that was more clear cut in some ways. There were a lot of harms associated with smoking. It was hard to make the case that there were health benefits from smoking but social media is more complicated.


GUPTA: So the issue is that we need to use these devices. We need to some extent, people are really dependent on social media. So you know, nicotine has no redeeming qualities. There's no benefit to it at all.

Here, this is more like food. Maybe it's bad food and you're eating too much of it but it does provide calories. So how do you navigate social media and devices? I'll just tell you really quickly because I know you have to go.

The average person picks up their phone and just looks at it hundreds of times a day, hundreds of times a day. Most of the times, it's just like a comfort tool. That's why they're doing it. But it sort of perpetuates this constant cycle.

Catherine Price, who's a science journalist, she said, just ask yourself three questions every time you pick up your phone. What for, why now, and what else? And I just find that really helpful.

Pick up your phone. Just why -- why am I really doing this? What else could I be doing instead? I think it can make a huge difference in terms of how we approach our relationship with devices.

HARLOW: We can absolutely could. Sanjay, thank you very much. I can't wait to listen to the full conversation. We appreciate it. GUPTA: Thank you.

You can all not only listen to it, Sanjay has a really fascinating op- ed on, an essay. His reaction to what the surgeon general, Vivek Murthy, actually said to him when he talked about how this is a crisis for us.

MATTINGLY: The Supreme Court is set to decide on key issues like voting rights, affirmative action, and student debt forgiveness. We could get some of those decisions this morning.

HARLOW: Plus Thursday tell CNN, the Justice Department has informed Donald Trump's legal team that he is indeed a target in the classified documents investigation. What it could mean about a potential indictment.


MATTINGLY: Well, in a few hours, the Supreme Court could issue decisions in some of the 27 cases it heard this term. Major rulings expected on the EPA, affirmative action and student loan forgiveness. CNN's Joan Biskupic joins us now. And Joan, first let's start what we think we may hear today.

JOAN BISKUPIC, CNN SENIOR SUPREME COURT ANALYST: Oh, it's so hard, Phil, because they don't tell us ahead of time what we're getting. And we've got about two dozen cases left to go and they've got 20 days. They tend to save the hardest ones for the last. But let me just tell you the three buckets that our remaining cases fall into.

Race, the balance between religion, and gay rights, and executive branch power on the race one, looking at challenges to Harvard and the University of North Carolina, their affirmative action programs where they've taken race into account for applicants to try to build campus diversity. There's also a major challenge to the 1965 voting rights act on the religion. It's another balance between where somebody's free speech rights ends and gay interests begin. That involves a wedding website designer that doesn't want to do a message involving gay couples.

And finally, on the executive power that I want to mention, very important case for many of our viewers involving President Biden's loan forgiveness for the student loan program and whether that was properly within his domain or whether Congress should have been able to do -- actually had to say that first.

HARLOW: Huge deal. What is the extent of a President's power and authority without the check of Congress? Joan, before we go, really interesting financial filings from the justices, everything from very expensive flower deliveries to trips to Europe and then some justices who haven't submitted theirs yet.

BISKUPIC: Exactly right, Poppy. And you know, we were all watching yesterday because we wanted to see what Justice Clarence Thomas would say because he's the one who's been under such scrutiny for taking, you know, these lavish trips and having private financial dealings with Republican billionaire Harlan Crowe. And we wanted to see, you know, just what he was going to disclose this time around. But he and Justice Samuel Alito have gotten extensions. They can take up to 90 days, Poppy, which was -- which would land us somewhere in the middle of August for those.

But in terms of what we did see, you mentioned a couple of sort of curiosities. You know.we have our first African-American woman justice on the Court and Katanji Brown Jackson received several things that congratulated her, including a four-figure floral arrangement from Oprah Winfrey congratulating her. So that was -- that was some set of flowers for her, too, Poppy. Yes.

HARLOW: Indeed. Indeed. That's what Phil is going to bring his wife when he returns from a week in New York.

MATTINGLY: Why are you doing that?

HARLOW: She's taking care of four kids. I'm just saying.

BISKUPIC: Excellent idea.

MATTINGLY: Just leave her alone. HARLOW: Joan, thank you very much.

BISKUPIC: Thank you.

MATTINGLY: And on that note, Lionel Messi, considered to be by many, by me, the best soccer player in the world, but in history, is heading to Miami, the elaborate deal that got him there and what it could mean for the future of soccer in America, and Will Smith, apparently. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MATTINGLY: Tonight, Poppy, the commercial showing the generations of Lionel Messi will need an update because the next version will be taking the Argentine legend to America. The seven-time Golden Boot winner considered by many including me, to be the best soccer player in history. He's left Paris -- Paris Sanchez Mon and is heading to South Florida where he will play with David Beckham's inner Miami.

Joining us now, TNT and Max Soccer Analyst, former MLS and U.S. men's national team midfielder Kyle Martino. Martino, I love kind of the --

KYLE MARTINO, SOCCER ANALYST, TNT AND MAX: I just love the Will Smith by the way.

MATTINGLY: You're welcome. That was actually Poppy's iPod. I love how it all kind of connects to some degree. Beckham, who was kind of the big international star who came here and gave the big boost owns in Miami. And you're here you played with Beckham when he came here?

MARTINO: I did all of this, yeah.

MATTINGLY: Basically, this was you making this all happen behind the scenes. But tell people maybe who don't follow soccer as closely. One, the level of surprise this is, and two, what it does for the MLS.

MARTINO: I mean, I think it's a big surprise in that this is the largest athlete in the world. You said the best player of all time. MARTINO: Do you agree?

MATTINGLY: I'll agree with you on that one. You know, it's hard to -- hard to pick a word that captures the magnitude of this moment. And I think for sports fans, the easiest way to put it into context is the last time a great athlete that was arguably the best in a sport went to Miami two decades ago was with LeBron leaves Cleveland and that's big news.

This is so much larger than that because this is global news. We're going to live in a Truman Show of Messi now. Where does he eat first in Miami? When's his first practice?

And so for soccer fans, they'll remember some of them Paylay comes in the 70s, huge moment. Beckham comes in 2007. And I was there and at a front-row seat where went from like I felt like I was in one direction. You're working in, like a bakery and next thing you know, you're like selling out stadiums.

And now Messi coming. It's just -- at this inflection point for soccer in this country as the greatest sport on the planet and the biggest sports market on the planet is gaining momentum ahead of the 2026 World Cup. I mean, this is a force multiplier in many ways.

HARLOW: It was like we're finally catching up, by the way, with the rest of the world. My family members in Europe think we're crazy, but not everyone is obsessed with soccer in America. But as you said, the World Cup is coming. It'll be the U.S., Mexico, Canada in 2026. What does this do for that?

MARTINO: Yeah. I mean, it just puts this --

HARLOW: In terms of the American audience and interest.

MARTINO: You know, it's funny, last time I was here, we're talking about Rexam, right? And then we're talking about Ted Lasso.

You know. this is a cultural thing. I mean this is just so much bigger than between the lines. I mean Messi, he just -- he fully encapsulates what it means to celebrate the beautiful game coming off of a World Cup win where he was the best player. I mean this isn't watch -- this isn't -- I kind of think of when Jordan came back with the 45. I was like, man, like, I loved you so much and you're were the great -- you're one of the greatest athletes of all-time. But maybe you should -- maybe this wasn't the time to come back and play.

I mean, Messi is still he's 35. People say you can't play at the top level. You're going to see a player that -- I mean it's just balladic. It's just beautiful. And what it can do for the game in this country is the entire world is going to be looking in through our window to see what soccer means to us.

MATTINGLY: There has been constantly this idea that this will change how people view soccer in the United States. This will be the thing. We have changed our youth programs. We have started to build. We have never -- we've had some disappointments on the international stage. Does this change things?

MARTINO: Yes. I mean, you know, it's -- it's funny like we used to have a chip on our shoulder. I grew up loving soccer and it was kind of like an underground. You didn't want to admit it in school. And at this point, that insecurity is gone.

I mean --

MATTINGLY: He is much cooler.

MARTINO: We're -- we're a great soccer nation. Our women win World Cups. You know, we -- we are -- we are a massive soccer nation. Are we catching up with hundreds of years of history? Yes. But things like this, I think CNN can only take the natural inertia of this great game growing in this country and just put wind in its sails.