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Trump-Endorsed Bernie Moreno To Win Ohio GOP Senate Primary; Trump Suggests Deporting Prince Harry If He Lied On Visa; Ex-Trump Aide Peter Navarro Begins Prison Term. Aired 5-5:30a ET

Aired March 20, 2024 - 05:00   ET



KASIE HUNT, CNN ANCHOR: It's Wednesday, March 20th.

Right now on CNN THIS MORNING:

Cleveland businessman Bernie Moreno winning the public Senate primary in Ohio. It's a win for Donald Trump. It might not be bad news for Democrats either.

An appeals court blocking Texas from it enforcing a controversial new immigration law just hours after the Supreme Court allowed it.

And why Donald Trump is threatening to kick Prince Harry out of the country if he wins the November election.


HUNT: Five a.m. here in Washington. A live look down National Mall, Washington Monument, Lincoln memorial.

Good morning, everyone. It's wonderful to have you with us. I'm Kasie Hunt.

Trump-endorsed conservative Bernie Moreno will win the Republican Senate primary in Ohio. It is a victory for the Republican Party's presumptive nominee. And there are some Democrats that view this as positive for them as well.

CNN projects Moreno will win the three-way contest, beating second- place finisher, the moderate, more moderate Matt Dolan, by roughly 18 points.

Here was Moreno last night thanking Donald Trump for all his help.


BERNIE MORENO (R), OHIO SENATE CANDIDATE: Well, let me just say something: I wear with honor my endorsement of president -- from President Trump, I wear that with a badge of honor because under President Trump, under President Trump, this nation was safer. It was more secure. We had prosperity around the world. We had generationally low interest rates and we had generationally low inflation. (END VIDEO CLIP)

HUNT: So, Moreno will take on three-term Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown this fall. It's a race that is going to be absolutely critical in deciding which party controls the U.S. Senate.

Joining me now is "Axios" national politics reporter, Sofia Cai.

Sophia, good morning. It's wonderful to have you.

So this, of course, a test of -- for Donald Trump. I'm not sure anyone expected anything other than for this to be something that ultimately boosted his pick in a primary. It does mean that the Trumpiest candidate is the one who won and Democrats I have to say not displeased about that. I mean, Chuck Schumer had kind of gotten himself the majority leader in the Senate involved in this in the final weeks.

What did you see here in the numbers and how do you think this race plays out in the fall?

SOPHIA CAI, NATIONAL POLITICS REPORTER, AXIOS: I mean, look, it was pretty close between first and second place and the Trump camp knew that. So that's why they sent Donald Trump, they sent Don, Jr., they also sent J.D. Vance over to Ohio in those final days, before the primary.

HUNT: Right.

CAI: But I should also just say that the Republicans who won, they're very different in the primaries then the current Republican serving in the state, including Governor DeWine, Senator Rob Portman. And so, these are very different sets of Republicans who won Trump's primary. It shows that Trump is still -- the Trump endorsement is still, you know, the most important currency when it comes to the GOP primaries, but we don't know if that will transfer over to the general election.

HUNT: In terms of the statewide race in Ohio.

CAI: Yeah.

HUNT: Yeah. I mean, let's talk about Senator Brown for a second and why this race is so important. I mean, the Senate is balanced on a 50/50 knives edge basically, right? There are a handful of critical races that are going to decide control of the Senate and really it's about Democrats who are still sitting in seats in states that are now basically red states, right?

Those few crossover senators, you've got Jon Tester out in Montana, but Sherrod Brown is possibly the quintessential example of someone from Ohio was a blue labor state, in many ways. It was a swing state for so many years, in our presidential politics.

CAI: Yeah.

HUNT: Now, we don't even really think about it that way and it's really about those kind of blue collar, especially white working class voters who previously were union Democrats in a lot of cases, who really swung for President Trump in 2016 and 2020.

Does Brown -- I mean, can -- does he have a hope of kind of hanging on? I mean, he's been a senator for a long time in Ohio, that could potentially carry him. He does have this sort of populist credibility and a lot of ways in terms of taking on big corporations.


But how tough is the road for him in Ohio?

CAI: It's going to be tougher than it was previously because in 2018, you know, he also got those Democrats who came in the Trump backlash year. And then before that he rode the Obama wave.

And this year I think will be really difficult for him because he's one of the last stands for Republicans and a manufacturing state. And it really shows that Republicans have been making gains with those blue collar voters.

HUNT: Yeah.

CAI: That's why that that's going to be so important for someone like Sherrod Brown this year.

HUNT: Right, and we're really seeing, of course, in particular the educational divide just kind of row between these two parties.

Let's put up the presidential vote board in Ohio from last night. There was -- obviously, it was the presidential primaries, not competitive because Nikki Haley, of course, has dropped out of the race, but its still does show you here, 14 percent of people, even with Nikki Haley not in, right, that there is some discontent inside the Republican Party.

And if that number among Republicans is that large, in November, it's not going to -- the math is not going to work for the former President Donald Trump, now, the presumptive Republican nominee, no?

CAI: Yeah. And it was not just an Ohio. I mean, Trump got between mid 70s to low 80s of the vote in all of the primaries that happened last night. And we knew that a lot of those numbers where he didn't get the Republican vote came in this suburb.

So, you know, we saw the Kansas City suburbs. We saw the Columbia suburbs. I mean, these are areas where in November, that'll be a real test for Trump when it comes to whether or not he will be able to get the college-educated vote, the voter who voted for Nikki Haley or another candidate in the primaries.

HUNT: Right, and the reality is he -- Trump needs -- he needs Republicans come out for him overwhelmingly, in addition to grabbing some of those independent voters that broke from him back in 2020.

Kind of big picture here, when we -- when we look across the whole Senate as well. And we think about what Washington might look like if Trump were to come back to power, Bernie Moreno in the Senate is another example of that chamber going even more in a Trumpian direction, no?

CAI: Yeah, I mean, one of Trump's biggest issues, his first term, even when Republicans control the Senate, was he didn't have that many ideological allies to advance his agenda. And so a lot of the groundwork that's being laid right now, by the Trump campaign and his allies. There is to have people like J.D. Vance, is to have more people like Eric Schmitt, is to have people in the Ted Cruz lane --

HUNT: Tommy Tuberville? Yeah.

CAI: Yeah, all of those -- all of those folks and especially without Minority Leader McConnell to lead the party in the Senate, you know, there is a concern among a lot of Republicans that the Senate will start to behave more like the House when it comes to key hot-button issues that are not -- those must pass bills. And so that's -- that's definitely a trend to be watching for the next term if Trump gets reelected.

HUNT: All right. Sophia Cai of "Axios" -- Sophia, thank you very much for starting us off today. I really appreciate it

Just ahead here, Donald Trump talking about deporting Prince Harry? What is going on there?

Plus, Melania Trump sighting. Is the former first lady about to hit the campaign trail?

And who's in and who's out in the race to replace Mitch McConnell?



HUNT: Welcome back.

Donald Trump, of all people, coming to Kate Middleton's defense in the ongoing Photoshop drama at Kensington Palace. In an interview with Britain's "GB News" yesterday, Trump declared that the altered photo of the princess of Wales and her three children, quote, shouldn't be a big deal.


NIGEL FARAGE, BRITISH BROADCASTER: A photograph that the press say was doctored, now an enormous row.

It's pretty tough being in her position, ain't it?

TRUMP: Well, that shouldn't be a big deal because everybody doctors. You look at these movie actors and you see a movie actor and you meet him and you say, is that the same person in the picture? And I looked at that actually, and it was a very minor doctoring. I don't understand why there could be such a howl over that. FARAGE: I think she'll be back.


HUNT: CNN royal historian Kate Williams joins me now from London.

Kate, good morning. Thank you so much for being here.

What do you make of Trump wading into this?

KATE WILLIAMS, CNN ROYAL HISTORIAN: Well, it's this international story. Everyone's weighing in. Kim Kardashian said she was looking for her, and now Trumps got opinions. I mean, really it shows this minus story has blown up into one of the biggest royal stories we've ever seen. It really shows I think that there's a PR disaster that's going on here, that Kate was having this abdominal surgery, long recovery, she needed (AUDIO GAP) Kensington Palace, of saying nothing, canceling engagements, no one having any updates meant that we had all these conspiracy theories.

And now, we've got the entire world with a theory and Trump now learning, into it say, oh, she'll be back. Its fine, it's just minor doctoring, under -- you know, this really shows that this story isn't going away anytime soon.

HUNT: Do you think the video that came out over the weekend released by "The Sun" showing Kate walking with William -- did that make things better or worse?

WILLIAMS: I do think what we've seen over the weekend is damaged limitation. Various sources saying to newspapers, Kate will be out and about at Easter, the footage of Kate and William walking through the farm shop.


I think this has dampened down a lot of the panic and hysteria, but it's not enough. I think we do need to see something thing in a week or so, some kind of perhaps little statement from Kate saying, thank you so much for the presents and cards, and "get well soon" messages because so far, the only thing we've heard from Kate is her saying about the doctored photo that she liked to edit on Photoshop. And I think the majority of people don't think that Kate edited that photo.

So I think people would like to hear from her, maybe not a video, but a statement, but certainly I think that things are abating now, but they could start off anytime soon. I mean, the Internet is all -- is all ready convinced there's something shady going on and it's very hard to unconvinced people once they think this way.

HUNT: Yeah, for sure. It's kind of the only thing I can see. The Twitter or the new X algorithm is feeding me every single one of these conspiracy theories because it seems to know that I'm interested in it. It's really remarkable.

Let me also ask you about Prince Harry, because Donald Trump talked about him as well in this interview and this is something that Trump might actually have power over if he's reelected.

And there's this question around a Prince Harry's visa application after he acknowledged that he, in his book "Spare", that he had used drugs. This is a question that can impact whether or not you get a visa here in the U.S.

Watch this exchange.


FARAGE: But doesn't the truth need to come out (ph)?

TRUMP: We'll have --

FARAGE: I mean, should -- should he get special privileges that nobody else does?

TRUMP: No, and we'll have to see if they know something about the drugs and if he lied, I have to take appropriate action.

FARAGE: Appropriate action?

TRUMP: Yeah.

FARAGE: Which might mean not staying in America.

TRUMP: Oh, I don't know. You'll have to tell me. You just have to tell me.


HUNT: It's a lot going on here. Trump's sitting with Farage, former -- you know, U.K. politician, et cetera. What do you make of these comments here? How they're going to be received in U.K.?

WILLIAMS: Well, I think that -- I mean, I think personally its unlikely that Trump if he gets elected, will do anything about this. I think it's -- it is very unlikely, but who knows? I mean, anything could happen.

And certainly it is -- you know, Prince Harry does want his visa. He does to be in the United States. They don't want to back in the U.K. He wants to be in the States.

I don't -- I think normally this would have got quite a lot of attention. I think normally this would have been big news in the U.K., but with everything that's going on, it has been totally overshadowed because no ones really paying that much attention to Harry and Meghan, and it's all about William and Kate.

HUNT: Right, and even what, what is Prince Harry saying about William and Kate, or what is, you know, Meghan, needs to be accounted for?

Very briefly, there is new reporting just in to CNN about the hospital where Kate was treated. And a potential breach of her privacy.

What do we know about that? How concerning is it?

WILLIAMS: Well, this is concerning. Apparently, what we know is that one, maybe two or more medical staff at the London clinic -- hospital where Kate was treated had tried to access her medical records. So, those who were not needing to, obviously, the nurses need to, the doctors need to, the ones caring for her, but it does seem to imply that those who were not caring for her, and obviously people are drawing the conclusion that perhaps they wanted to sell it to the newspapers or for some reason, this has been reported to the data commissioner, the hospitals investigating, and it is actually a criminal offense.

So the police haven't said whether they've heard anything about it, but it could be reported to them. And this is very -- you know, this is very, very severe. I mean, these private medical records. They're private -- not just to the whole world, but two people treating Kate.

So I think it's very worrying to the royal family and it really shows that, you know, the queen's governors one said, royals are only private in the womb and that was in the 1930s. This is 100 years on your barely even private there. It's -- you know, royals are seen absolutely as public property

HUNT: Yeah, in a case like this, it's -- they do deserve the privacy in this hospital in particular has this reputation for being able to treat people discreetly, definitely a major, major issue.

Kate Williams for us in London -- Kate, very grateful to you for walking us through all of the news this morning. Thank you.

Coming up next here, a warning from the White House -- cyber attackers targeting your water?

Plus, the next Bond -- James Bond. Why some fans are shaken and stirred?



HUNT: All right. Twenty-three minutes past the hour. Here is your morning round up.

Ex-Trump adviser Peter Navarro waking up today in federal prison.


PETER NAVARRO, EX-TRUMP ADVISER: Every person who has taken me on this road to that prison is a frigging Democrat and at Trump hater. Let me walk you through it. It starts with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi who forms the J6 committee.


HUNT: Navarro will spend four months behind bars in an air conditioned cell in Miami for refusing my comply with a congressional subpoena from the January 6 Committee.

A new indictment against former Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro. Police say he falsified COVID vaccination data for himself and his daughter back in 2020.

The White House warning governors to be on alert for cyber attacks targeting water systems here in the U.S. They have asked each state to beef up their plans against potential hacks from Iran or China. It's scary stuff.

All right. Time now for whether.


Scattered lake-effect snow for the Northeast today and an elevated fire danger in parts of Texas and New Mexico.

Our weatherman Van Dam tracking all of it for us.

Derek, good morning. What do you got?

DEREK VAN DAM, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Good morning. Yeah. Okay, Kasie, you've got your Michigan routes, just like I do, my home town of Grand Rapids. And by this time of year, first day of spring, we kind of wash our hands of snow. And when we get snowflakes falling from the sky, boy, yeah, I can not make for the nicest wins.

I got pictures from my family yesterday. Would that snow band coming? Through going Derek, what is going on?

Well, hey, look, its just late season cold snap. It happens not as cool as it was yesterday. Temperatures were well below freezing. Remember we talked about that late freeze across the Deep South while temperatures have slightly modified from that. But remember, were only six hours into the spring equinox or which was which occurred 11:06 p.m. last night. And we're already seen snowfall totals approaching a foot for Upstate New York. Guess what? There's more snow coming.

The good news about this is that will impact the majority of the population along the Eastern Seaboard. So were not anticipating snowfall from New York to Boston, but Berlin to Buffalo, Albany, that's another story. You can see another three, upwards of four inches so snow, especially into the higher elevations of Maine. There's a lot of wind associated with the system as well.

First, later this afternoon, across the mid-Atlantic, perhaps taking off some of those cherry blossom flowers off the trees along the West Potomac and into the tidal basin across the Northeast, though by Thursday afternoon, Portland to Boston, and we'll see winds gusting over 40 miles per hour. There's those fire danger and that exists across portions of western Texas as well.

So brace yourself several instances of snow and cold air anticipated across the northern parts of our country going forward this week.

HUNT: Cheerful, happy first full day of spring. Our weatherman Van Dam, Derek, thank you very much. I'll see you soon.


HUNT: All right. If you went to bed early, you probably missed it. A new immigration law in Texas is on hold again, just hours after the Supreme Court voted to allow it.

Plus, a potential new contender in the race to replace Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell