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Senator Tim Scott Launches 2024 Presidential Exploratory Committee; Fox News Is Sanctioned By Judge Ahead Of Defamation Trial; Shooter's Mom Called 911 After Hearing Her Son's Plan; Inflation Falls To Lowest Level Since May 2021; CNN TONIGHT Presents "Tomorrow's News Tonight." Aired 11p-12a ET
Aired April 12, 2023 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN HOST: Senator Tim Scott announcing the launch of his presidential exploratory committee today after months of testing the waters, and he is starting with a listening tour and visits to Iowa. So, what is the path for Tim Scott?
Arlette Saenz has been talking to her sources. So, Arlette, let's start with who is Tim Scott. How is he introducing himself and selling himself to voters?
ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, Alisyn, this is the introductory period for yet another Republican who might be entering the race. He is just doing it in that exploratory committee for a period now. But Tim Scott, senator from South Carolina, has long been seen as a rising star within the Republican Party. He is the lone Black Republican senator in Congress at this moment.
And in his announcement launch, he really leaned into his own personal history. That's something that people close to him believe is something that will be a big selling point with people, the son of a single mother who grew up in poverty, and he really emphasized that as he tried to talk about what he can offer to the American people, but also offer some type of connections with them as well.
CAMEROTA: Should we listen to it?
CAMEROTA: Okay. So, let's listen to a little bit of how he was introducing himself.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. TIM SCOTT (R-SC): I was raised by a single mother in poverty. The spoons in our apartment were plastic, not silver. But we had faith. We put in the work and we had an unwavering belief that we, too, could live the American dream.
I know America is a land of opportunity, not a land of oppression. I know it because I've lived it. That's why it pains my soul to see the Biden liberals attacking every rung of the ladder that helped me climb.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAMEROTA: Hmm, that's interesting. So, Arlette, what's his plan for dealing with former President Trump, who is also in the race?
SAENZ: Yeah. Well, he was asked about that today in an interview with Fox News, and he really just completely avoided talking about President Trump. He tried to argue that this race is about President Biden, the current occupant of the White House, and that is a strategy that you do see at times play out within the Republican Party.
But at some point, there is going to have to be this engagement, right, with the big elephant in the room, which is Donald Trump.
CAMEROTA: What that's going to look like?
SAENZ: I mean --
SAENZ: We'll see -- we'll see how he does it. I mean, one thing that's interesting about Tim Scott is he really projects this optimist, you know, happy type of attitude when he tries to talk about the country. And sometimes, that runs contrary to, you know, the abrasive nature that we've seen from the former president himself.
So, we'll see when Scott actually tries to engage with Donald Trump. I imagine it might be quite some time.
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: I always find it interesting as kind of this person who is not -- you know, I don't cover politics. Obviously, I'm interested in it. But right now, there's just thing where everyone just wants to avoid talking about the elephant in the room. And for how much longer can they do that when he's dominating the news cycle as he is with everything that's going on?
Every time they're asked, well, how are you going to fight with Trump, how are you going to go against him, and they just rather avoid that when really that is one of the key issues of the race.
HARRY ENTEN, CNN SENIOR DATA REPORTER: You know, it's exactly what -- you know, when I watched that ad, I just think it's like George W. Bush's Republican Party. I feel like that would be the ad that I would expect, you know, George W. Bush or someone who liked George W. Bush to actually run.
And I just say, does this really fit the moment that we're in? And, you know, you mentioned the fact that, you know, Donald Trump is this big elephant in the room. You know, he's garnering what? Fifty percent of the primary vote at this point? What is Tim Scott getting? One, two percent at most?
CAMEROTA: He just did an exploratory committee. Give him a break. Give him a minute.
ENTEN: Ron DeSantis -- Ron DeSantis hasn't even gotten in and Ron DeSantis has polling in the twenties if not --
PROKUPECZ: But why not -- why not do it now? Why not try to -- yes, it's an exploratory, you know, committee and you're in the early stages, but why not make some noise? Why not --
CAMEROTA: Why not engaged?
PROKUPECZ: Why not --
CAMEROTA: I will say that Harry is already dismissing him at that, saying he has one percent --
ENTEN: Oh, well, that's Harry.
RAHEL SOLOMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Harry also dismisses me all the time.
ENTEN: I never do that.
SOLOMON: If that makes you feel any better. No, Arlette, one thing that I wonder and I think about is Senator Scott is known as a good fundraiser. He is certainly known as someone who is well liked, certainly at least within his party.
How much does that factor in when the concern, I think, among the party is that he doesn't have the name recognition? So, how important are factors like you can fundraise well, you get along well, but you don't have that name recognition yet?
SAENZ: Well, with the fundraising, I mean, he does come from a very strong point. He has about $20 million sitting in his campaign account from when he ran for Senate. He is able to raise that money. Raising that money helps you buy ads, helps you get your name out.
But certainly, I mean, he is going to have to be out there shaking the hands, trying to find a way to differentiate himself within this party at this time.
One thing -- you know, I talked to someone close to his operation a bit earlier today. They feel that he has an in with evangelical voters. He can talk about his faith very easily. South Carolina is a state with a big evangelical population.
Iowa is a state with a big, big evangelical population. If you look back to 2016, part of the reason that Ted Cruz was able to win the Iowa caucuses was because of those evangelical voters. So, perhaps, that would be a way for him to get some recognition within Iowa. If you win Iowa, it helps you in New Hampshire. Go on to South Carolina, it can be there. SOLOMON: You know what's also interesting? It will be curious to see if he leans into some of his ideas in terms of his economic policy, right? I mean, he talks about home ownership and just the challenges that we have within the housing industry, and we certainly do. But even in terms of his story, he talked about how he and his mom rented through high school.
One thing that's a really big challenge is Black homeownership. The Black homeownership rate has number -- practically not budge in 10 years, right? And so, I think even leaning into perhaps some solutions, leaning into some ideas there, his economic policies might be able to win him some -- some votes perhaps.
ENTEN: I -- yes, the reason I'm so skeptical --
ENTEN: -- is because, you know, I like to look back at history and where candidates are polling, who went -- eventually went on to win the nomination. And if you're polling in Donald Trump's position, you know, you win, what, like 75% of the time. If you're in Ron DeSantis's position, you win something, you know, close to about a third of the time, maybe 40% of the time. Someone who's polling in Tim Scott's position at this particular point given where Trump and DeSantis are polling, they've never won. Now, that doesn't mean they can't, right? History is made to be broken. But I think that's why I'm just so skeptical.
CAMEROTA: That's really interesting, Harry. So, in other words, if somebody -- so, it's -- I would say it's early, right?
ENTEN: It's early.
CAMEROTA: I mean, so, you don't think that he can't -- there's nothing in history that says that somebody can turn it around at this point if they get in now?
ENTEN: Look, given where he's polling, there have been a few examples of people have been polling less than 5% and gone on to win the nomination. Polling less than 5% at this point. Bill Clinton is one, Jimmy Carter is another one. Even Donald Trump, we don't remember this, but Donald Trump is actually polling less than 5% at this point.
But the difference right now is that we have two candidates who are already securing such a large proportion of the vote. And while it is early, it turns out that at least historically, these early polls do, in fact, give us a pretty good indication about who is for real and who is probably just going to be in and we'll say adios, amigos to them eventually.
SOLOMON: And the data reporter would know. Harry would know.
ENTEN: I have no life. That's what I look at.
CAMEROTA: I'm aware. Um, so, Arlette, surely, he has seen those numbers, but he's in it, he's getting in it, it appears, for a reason. SAENZ: Yeah. And, you know, this is the time where he can test out different messages, try to appeal to different types of groups. You know, there are some who say, oh, this could -- yes, he wants to run for president, but there are some who say, oh, maybe he is trying to out for a number two spot or for something else, trying to build up name recognition for another position, a future run down the line.
That could all be factors into it. Of course, his team says he wants to run or he's exploring whether he fully wants to run. But there is that element of it as well.
CAMEROTA: In terms of where he is on policy, I know it's pretty early, but he has a history, a track record, Shimon, with working on police reform.
PROKUPECZ: Right. I mean, this is a George Floyd bill. This is something that he has been part of. But he won't go as far as the Democrats want him to go and certainly, you know, folks who are looking for police reform and some of the constraints on policing and some of the other issues.
You know, he's more into mental health and giving more money to law enforcement. But some of the key issues that are needed for what police -- what people feel, some of the victims of police violence, the reform that's needed, he's not willing to go as far -- as far.
And look, I think coming -- who knows what's going to happen as we get close -- closer to the election? But right now, there's so much focus on guns and, you know, his stance is very clear, obviously, on guns. And I wonder what's going to happen as we go through this and deeper into the election and what role guns are going to have in the election, and where he's going to stand on this.
CAMEROTA: Yeah. Everybody, stick around. Thank you very much for all of that. So, Fox News got in trouble in court today. A judge accused Fox of hiding evidence on the eve of the Dominion defamation trial. But on air, they're telling their voters still what they -- their viewers, I should say -- what they want to hear. Uh, so, Harry Enten is here to crunch the numbers for what this looks like, and we'll talk about all that.
CAMEROTA: Another twist on the brink of the trial in the $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit against Fox. The judge today hammering Fox's lawyers for possibly withholding key evidence, saying -- quote -- "I am very concerned that there have been misrepresentations to the court. This is very serious."
The judge announcing plans to appoint a special master, meaning an outside attorney to dig into whether Fox lied about Rupert Murdoch's role, claiming it was not as prominent as it perhaps was. This in an effort to hide evidence, thereby limiting what emails, texts, and documents they had to turn over in discovery.
The new sanctions imposed allowed Dominion to conduct more depositions from see -- some key witnesses, and Fox must make those witnesses available and pay for the depositions. Fox is denying any wrongdoing. But this is another black eye for Fox, to be accused of lying and misinformation as part of a trial overlying a misinformation.
Harry Enten has been reporting on the Fox News audience. Harry, I know you've been crunching the numbers in terms of the audience and what Fox is now reporting on. But before we get to that, I just want to take a beat and talk about this trial, what it means, because it is huge in the media and in, I would say, the country.
I mean, for everything that they have -- that they mean to the country. And so, Shimon, there -- you're saying jury selection is set tomorrow.
PROKUPECZ: Yeah. So, jury selection will start tomorrow. We'll see how long that takes. But then there's reports that Rupert Murdoch may be taking to stand as early as Monday.
Um, look, I mean, this trial, I think, is going to be, um, one of the biggest trials we're probably going to ever cover because it's just going to have so much information. There's all this intrigue about what was going on at Fox.
But the thing is, just think about what happened today. A judge is basically accusing Fox lawyers of lying. He basically said it to them. He said to them, an omission is a lie. And what he's accusing them of is refusing to give over discovery information that is critical to the Dominion attorneys.
And every time they're in court and every time something happens, new information comes out, and we're like, oh, my God. And now, you have this judge accusing them of essentially lying, ordering a special master, and we haven't even started this trial. Testimony hasn't even begun. Can you imagine what's going to happen when these guys start testifying and the information that's going to come out?
CAMEROTA: I mean, part of me is skeptical that they will. Part of me feels like Fox will settle.
PROKUPECZ: I don't know. I have -- this has been my whole thing with this case. Why hasn't Fox settled? Now, is it a thing that Dominion is like you've screwed us over so bad, we are going to punish you and we are going to drag this out as long as we can, or is it that Fox is just willing to take their chances and instead of paying the billion dollars that Dominion wants, they'd rather say, you know what, we're going to go with a jury, let the jury decide?
It's not affecting them, though. That's the thing. They're not losing any viewers over there.
CAMEROTA: No, they're not. No, they're not. And in fact, their viewers, many of their viewers don't know this is happening --
CAMEROTA: -- because they're so locked in an echo chamber that they have never heard that they've been misled through some of this and that the guests made stuff up out of whole cloth and, you know, pedaled all of these laws. So, that's really interesting if they get away with this without their viewers knowing, you know, what has been happening.
ENTEN: I mean, the fact is they're telling their viewers what their viewers want to hear, right? I mean, one of the things that I think is interesting is when you break down the polling data, right, and you look, okay, do you essentially believe the falsehood that Joe Biden did not legitimately win the election? The vast majority of Fox News viewers believe that.
Now, Fox News could tell them -- you know, some of their hosts do tell the truth, but some obviously have not been telling the truth. But if the Fox News viewer just wants to go and watch something else, they could. They could go and watch "One America" news network or Newsmax where the even more -- higher percentage of those viewers don't believe that Joe Biden legitimately won the election.
So, at the end of the day, you know, I think, as we know, through all the stuff that's come out, a lot of these hosts made abend, said, you know what, we're going double down on what our viewers want to hear because if we don't, we're afraid they're going to go watch something else.
CAMEROTA: Yeah, that's one of the things that we've learned from all of the testimony that has come out in this already, is that that's their business model. Give the viewers what they want to hear.
But one of the things that you've crunched the numbers on is lately, you know, there was a question of will Fox abandon Donald Trump?
CAMEROTA: And will they start to favor Ron DeSantis? And there seemed to be a dalliance, a short dalliance with Ron DeSantis where they were doing that. That has changed now.
ENTEN: Yeah, that definitely is no longer the case. I mean, look at how many times Donald Trump has been mentioned over --
CAMEROTA: How many?
ENTEN: Look at this. We have a -- we have a graphic on it, I believe. It's something upwards. Look at this, 3,219 times --
CAMEROTA: In the last 30 days.
ENTEN: In the last 30 days. Ron DeSantis is just 731 times, Nikki Haley 190, Mike Pence 143, Tim Scott 58. So, if you total up all the other people, they don't even come close to Donald Trump. The fact is Donald Trump is who the Fox News audience wants to hear about.
That's why I had that interview last night with Tucker Carlson which, of course, was classic Donald Trump. You know, oh, they -- the court officers, they were crying, they were crying when I was brought in. Oh, my God, it's like -- how many times have you heard that where, you know, you know, Donald Trump says, oh, they were crying, they were so sad, they had grown men who were having tears?
It's just -- you know, it's the same old hits from it was seven years ago or eight years ago, but apparently it still plays with at least some.
PROKUPECZ: But also, you know, and the thing that -- it doesn't stop some of the, you know, the politicians from going on Fox, right? Like politically, I just feel nothing has changed, you know.
CAMEROTA: What about that, Arlette?
SAENZ: No, I mean, they are going to keep going on Fox because those are the voters that they need to court. And so, so far, nothing that has come up during this pending lawsuit really has changed any politician's factoring. I don't think it will change it just because they know the massive audience that Fox is able to draw in. I think that politicians will continue to go on there regardless of what happens.
CAMEROTA: Rahel, am I -- is it out of the question that they would settle if, let's say, for $1 billion? They make so much money. Is it -- financially, that would destroy them.
SOLOMON: No, I don't think it would destroy them. I think what's interesting, though, about this case is that not only does Dominion have to prove that it was defamed, but it then has to prove why it -- why it should get a hunch, $1.6 billion, right?
And there are few things to think about in terms of damages. It's the actual business losses, it's the potential business losses, and it's reputational damage.
So, Dominion has for its part, look, we've lost 20 customers, we've lost 39 jurisdictions, potential opportunities. And perhaps that doesn't sound like a lot. But when you actually look at some of their contracts with some states in different jurisdictions, some of these contracts we're hot. Tens of millions of dollars each, right?
So, Dominion is saying, look, we've lost money, we've lost business opportunities, but it's also the reputational damage that it's claiming because of this defamation, which is a lot harder to prove. It's a lot harder to prove. It's a lot harder to quantify.
PROKUPECZ: It's very hard to figure out what they could have made, what they -- you know --
CAMEROTA: Yeah. PROKUPECZ: -- how many of us heard of Dominion before this, right? And so, I think for the future, it destroyed them. It completely destroyed the company. But this question of settlement, I just -- for me and following this, it has always been, why would Fox want all this information to come out? And maybe they gambled and they thought, well, this would never come out.
And we are seeing indications from the court that they're still hiding information. So perhaps -- you know, to your point, Rahel, I think it's -- it could be that they're going to say, you know what, we're going to lose this case, but we may win on damages. So, you know what, we'll wait.
PROKUPECZ: We'll just get this to a jury, and then on damages, perhaps that is where they will be --
CAMEROTA: Meaning, it could be lower than $1.6. Why?
PROKUPECZ: It could be lower. And also, look, you know, if they win this case somehow, it is going to be a huge victory for them. A huge victory for them. No one sees how that's possible. But imagine if they do. You never know. So, perhaps, the gamble and all of this for them is, let's just go.
The money -- there is no way that the money is an issue here. Right? For them --
SOLOMON: For Fox, yeah.
PROKUPECZ: Yeah, for Fox. A billion dollars. It could be Dominion is like we don't want it. Let's just keep going.
ENTEN: I think it's interesting when you say something like, oh, maybe they weren't anticipating this. You know, when I was a kid, I looked up to my parents. I said, oh, wow, they really know what they're doing.
You know, when I first started working with people who are a little bit older than me, I said, man, they really know what they're doing. And the older I get, the more I realized how little I know now, how little most people know.
SOLOMON: Should we talk about what we were talking about during the break? How we thought our parents had it all together? And then, as we became adults, we realized this is really hard.
CAMEROTA: So, your argument is maybe they have no idea what they're doing.
ENTEN: Maybe they have no idea.
CAMEROTA: They're just gambling.
PROKUPECZ: The other thing is that Fox can be lying to their lawyers. I mean, clients, you know, look, I mean, I'm not saying there's any proof of that, but we have to see what will be developed as this -- the fact that they're bringing in an outside lawyer, the judge is so furious there.
He's bringing in an outside person to figure out what the hell is going on here because he's -- you know, the judge is just saying, I'm done, I'm sick of it, and we need to figure out what is going on here.
SOLOMON: One thing I will say in terms of -- this is something that I found really interesting today, just in terms of preparation, is that Dominion was obscure before 2020, right? But the entire industry is pretty obscure.
I mean, when you look at some of the other, Dominion is one of the top three of this sort of voting systems, right. So, it was obscured but still a major player. And so, when you have that type of market concentration, you know, it'll -- it'll be interesting to see what the damages and what the sort of impact to them negatively if so was.
CAMEROTA: All right, friends, thank you very much for all of that. We want to get to this. Louisville police releasing the 911 calls from that deadly mass shooting at the bank. Shimon has details on a call for help from inside the building, a frantic call from the shooter's mother to 911.
CAMEROTA: Louisville police releasing 911 calls from the mass shooting at the bank where five people were killed. One of those calls was from a woman hiding in a closet.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Has anybody been shot?
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Yes.
UNKNOWN (voice-over): How many people?
UNKNOWN (voice-over): I don't know. Probably eight or nine.
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Eight or nine people have been shot?
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Uh-huh.
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Are you with any of them?
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Yes, I'm in a closet hiding. I hear -- I hear gunshots.
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Is that shots fired?
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Yes. Yes, ma'am.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAMEROTA: Yeah, so awful. CNN's senior crime and justice correspondent Shimon Prokupecz has been working this story. Shimon, it's so awful to hear these anguished calls, and I'm just wondering why did police (INAUDIBLE)? I mean, the shooter in this case is dead. What's the law enforcement's purpose?
PROKUPECZ: So, look, I think we're at a point in this country where people need to understand how horrific this is, and I think law enforcement is just tired of hiding behind any kind of secrecy or not telling us exactly what happened because I think it's important for people to understand how horrific these moments are, for people's lives, to witness this kind of carnage, to have to hide in the room and not sure that you're going to live.
Every second -- I mean, that woman on that phone call was like -- that wasn't a very long call. But she was on the phone. When are they getting here? When are they getting here? And that is the reason why, I think, in part why they released.
The other part is just legally, they have to. You know, we're going to ask for it, others are going to ask for it, and it needs to come out. I'm sure if someone objected to it, some of the family members or someone they may not have but they gave fair notice to the -- to the people involved, to the victims, to the others, that they were going to do this, and so they put it out.
I -- personally, I think it's important for people to listen.
I've listened to way too many of these, including children. But it's important because perhaps -- perhaps somehow, some change would happen.
CAMEROTA: I believe that. You know, obviously, the other argument is that we're getting numb to it. Um, either way, I'm -- obviously, I'm for transparency. Obviously, we fight for transparency and particularly you in terms of, you know, we do this FOIA requests of the police and we do want to know what has happened. But listening to it, it's just really hard.
PROKUPECZ: It's hard and it's certainly hard in the moment. And no matter how many times you listen to it, it doesn't get easier. You know, the other thing that the police did today was -- we don't normally get this. They released the 911 call from the mother, the mother of the gunman, the shooter.
She gets a call from his roommate who says he left a note here describing what he was about to do. And she makes this frantic call to police asking for help. Take a listen to that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Yes, ma'am, my son might be (INAUDIBLE). He said he has a gun and he's heading toward the Old National at -- on Main Street here in Louisville.
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Main Street, Old National?
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Yes. This is his mother. I'm so sorry. I'm getting these details second hand. I'm going through it now. Oh, my Lord.
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Okay. And what exactly is going on with him? Why -- what is he saying he's doing?
UNKNOWN (voice-over): I don't know. I'm getting this information from his roommate. He apparently left a note. He has never hurt anyone. He's a really good kid. Please don't punish him. His roommate called me. His roommate was concerned. Please, he's -- he's not violent.
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Uh-hmm.
UNKNOWN (voice-over): He has never done anything. He's -- he's --
UNKNOWN (voice-over): Okay. And you don't believe he owns guns?
UNKNOWN (voice-over): I know he doesn't own any guns.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAMEROTA: Gosh, that's so incredible, Shimon, to hear that because that's different than what we think of as the profile of a mass shooter where she says he's not violent, please don't punish him, he doesn't own any guns. That's so different.
Often, what we hear parents say is, yeah, he has been acting really strangely. Um, we know that he has been, you know, whatever hurting animals. Like there are usually warning signs that the parents know. But he wasn't living with his mother. But that's just so different than what we normally hear.
PROKUPECZ: Right. And just so you -- you know, just to make that point even clearly, when the Nashville shooting happened, that shooter, the parents were aware that this person liked guns, had guns, and told this person, get the guns out of the house, and believed that the guns were taken out of the house.
Um, yeah, I think you make a good point there. This -- the profile here is a little different. Um, and obviously, you could tell it is a complete shock from the mother. But most mothers are shocked when their kids wind up doing this.
CAMEROTA: Of course. Of course. Arlette, I know this is a totally futile question, but I'm going to ask it because maybe something has shaken loose on Capitol Hill. When something like this happens, do they talk about it? Do they talk about having a meeting? Do they talk about -- do the politicians talk about what are we going to do now? SAENZ: I mean, I think you often just see kind -- people kind of retreat into their corners. Democrats say we need stronger gun restrictions, we need assault weapons bans, that's something Biden calls for over and over, and Republicans say, no, we need more investments in mental health and trying to go that route.
Um, but we had the shooting Monday, the week before Nashville, and it just doesn't seem like anything is really shaking the conversation loose when it comes to gun control up on Capitol Hill. You know, Biden has said he has done everything that he can.
CAMEROTA: Has he? Has he done every executive order --
SAENZ: I mean, he has done a lot. What he wants to see is the assault weapons ban. He wants to see more background checks. And that just is not going to happen unless --
CAMEROTA: You can't do that in a single night.
SAENZ: No. Unless people are elected to Congress. Now, one thing that Biden argues is that he wants people to put the pressure on their lawmakers or elect people into Congress who can pass that kind of stuff.
I think what you saw in Tennessee, um, you did see really these animating forces. So many people upset about what happened, upset about the fact that the Republican-led State House wasn't doing more.
Um, we'll see if gun control can actually be a big motivator when it comes to the next election, but I think until the makeup is changed in Congress, not much more is going to get done. There was modest reform that was passed last summer in the wake of Uvalde, but people pretty much are in their corners at this point.
PROKUPECZ: I also feel and I think maybe Harry could talk about this more, just sort of people, you know, that I have talked to who are victims of these horrific situations and horrific crimes, are just hopeless that there will be any kind of change, you know, and that just -- they don't feel the numbers that the support is there.
CAMEROTA: But people are doing it at the -- at the -- I mean, just that people don't feel entirely hopeless. They are doing it at the state level. I mean, you know, Connecticut has done things after Sandy Hook. And, as you know, Florida has done things after Parkland. And maybe that's what it takes. I mean, I hate to hear people that are --
PROKUPECZ: In Texas, certainly. I mean, you know, the Uvalde families are just crushed over the fact that nothing can be done. And they've been working so hard to try and get stuff done, and they -- it's impossible.
ENTEN: I mean, Arlette was sitting on it, right? Everyone just goes to another partisan corner. You know, you mentioned Connecticut, very blue state. Florida is an interesting example, right, which is not a very blue state. In fact, it's a state that is becoming more red, where we actually did see some things occur there. Maybe that gives us some hope as a nation that things can occur even in states where you might not expect it.
But the fact is that we are further apart on guns and our views of guns and gun control than we've been in the last 50 years in this country. So, you know, when we started this segment, I'll be honest with you, you know, maybe it's the late hour, but my mind was so scrambled.
I thought we were going to be talking about Nashville. I really was. Because it's just -- they're happening so often and so close together your mind gets confused and it can lead to you becoming numb. And that's something I think we all have to just fight so much against.
CAMEROTA: You're not alone. I mean, we just -- in my last panel an hour ago, there was confusion, too, because it's hard for us to keep track at this point. There were reporting every single week.
PROKUPECZ: Do you really think people will -- is that -- is that a real fear that people are going to get dumped?
CAMEROTA: Yes, I think so, because I think they were just protecting our own mental health. You can't focus on -- you can't hear too many of those 911 calls without it really having a visceral and sickening effect on you.
SOLOMON: I would also add in addition to seeing different groups, sort of, you know, hide to their different partisan corners, we're also hearing silence from some groups like Corporate America, right?
And maybe part of that is because they feel like it is way too hot to touch and because we are so divided that they feel like, look, unless there's an incentive for me to insert myself into this really controversial, really, you know, hot topic, we're going to stay out of it altogether. But that has also been deafening, that you haven't really seen a lot of major corporations step up and take a position.
CAMEROTA: That's such a good point because after some school shootings they did and this time with the spate of shootings, they haven't.
All right, everybody, stick around because there is actually good news to get to about inflation. It fell to its lowest level in nearly two years. Rahel is going to break down what this means for price of -- the price of gas and groceries and all the credit card debt that Americans have racked up. We'll be right back.
CAMEROTA: Okay, now, for a bit of good news, inflation has fallen to its lowest levels since May of 2021. This is the ninth consecutive month where inflation is down. And gas prices are down more than 17% from 2022. But prices are still high for food and housing. And there's still trouble with consumer credit card bills where debt is now at a record high.
CNN's business correspondent Rachel Solomon is here to fill us in. So, Rahel, first, what's the answer for credit card debts?
SOLOMON: So, we all know we're not supposed to have it, right? But life is what it is. And so, sometimes you do have it. So, what do you do if you are carrying credit card debt? Well, Ted Rossman of Bankrate, senior industry analyst, tells me credit card (INAUDIBLE) says try to transfer it over to a 0% balance transfer, right? Lock in 0%. So, move that from 21%.
And I should say that credit card rates, by the way, are at record highs at 20.21% on average. They have never been higher than that, right? So, move it over to -- lock in a 0% balance transfer, he says. That will give you some time to move it over, gives you 21 months. In some cases, as much as 21 months. And so, then you can, as long as you don't add to it, sort of 21 months, divide up the mount, pay it off every month, and just try to get it over with.
CAMEROTA: So, if inflation is coming down, great news. Why is food still so high?
SOLOMON: It takes a long time to have inflation come down, right? And so, there are some factors. Food -- food inflation can be really volatile because it depends on what's happening with weather, it depends on what's happening with livestock. So many different things.
But we can show you just some of the examples. If you're going to the grocery store and you're hearing inflation is down but you're looking at some of these categories thinking, uh, uh, not really, right? So, I mean, you can see eggs, they've come down 10.9% on a monthly basis, but we should say, I mean, egg prices have been very high. They're still higher than they were a year ago.
Lettuce prices have come down. Banana has come down. Breakfast cereals, they have still gone up. So, you're still feeling that pinch when you go to the grocery store.
This was supposed to be the year of significant declines in inflation. That's what Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said, 2023 will be a year of significant declines. I don't know if we're at a significant part of it yet, but we are seeing declines because 5% on an annual basis -- guys, remember when we were talking about inflation at 9.1% in June?
SOLOMON: I mean, it got really, really --
PROKUPECZ: Harry, what was the most expensive thing you paid for? Come on.
CAMEROTA: What is the most expensive? PROKUPECZ: I don't know that --
ENTEN: The most expensive thing would have been the trip that I took to Woodstock, Vermont.
PROKUPECZ: There you go.
ENTEN: So that was the most expensive.
UNKNOWN: But I don't know if that is inflation or --
PROKUPECZ: Harry doesn't like to spend money.
UNKNOWN: Focus, Harry. Focus, Harry.
ENTEN: The thing I don't like about that is now I have to pay a lot more for my cookie cereal. So --
CAMEROTA: Now we are getting --
ENTEN: But now we're getting the important thing. But the bananas being, you know, that's good because now I can eat healthier.
ENTEN: Less carbs, more fruits.
SAENZ: So, you weren't eating healthier because of the price?
CAMEROTA: That's right.
SAENZ: That's why --
ENTEN: Yes, absolutely.
CAMEROTA: Okay. Arlette, is it too soon to figure out what impact this will have on 2024? I mean, things can change, right, before then or is it already --
SOLOMON: Oh, yeah, because gas prices have started to come back down, but they're also on their way back up.
SAENZ: Yeah. I think things -- things can change. But the White House and the president are fully aware of what liability this can be heading into 2024. I mean, Harry knows well, this is the top --
SAENZ: -- concern to all American voters.
[23:45:02] How much things are costing them? How much money they're going to have saved for the future? These are all things that people are taking into consideration. And the president, you know, they're trying to promote things that they're doing. You know, they're trying to take credit for some of these jobs that are being created overall in the economy, but also announcements companies are making bad investments for the future, trying to talk about how that ties back to their plans.
But bottom line is many Americans are just still not feeling like they're doing well. Even if inflation is slowly dropping a bit, it is just still something that isn't hitting people just yet.
CAMEROTA: This is still the number one. When people say, what's most important to you, economy is number one.
ENTEN: When you -- inflation is number one. You know, you can look at it in so many different ways, right? I think what's so interesting, though, is, you know, you try and analyze voter behaviors, how odd this economy is in some ways, right? You know, inflation is still high, although it's coming down, but unemployment is incredibly low. So as a voter, you know, you're trying to say, is the economy good? Is it bad?
PROKUPECZ: But are people getting raises like -- that's the thing. Are the raises -- the money that people making isn't matching with reality.
SOLOMON: It is a really, really great point, Shimon. The truth is that it does depend on industries, right? So, in some industries, we're seeing that wages have actually outpaced inflation. But by and large, you know, I mean, certainly when inflation was at 9%, I mean, unless you got a 10% bump, it wasn't right. And so, I think that is the tough reality of this environment that we're in, that job creation is plentiful. Can you get a job? Absolutely. Maybe you got a raise. That's great. But is it keeping up with inflation? Maybe not.
And so, even if you are making more, you still feel like you're bringing home less. And that is a really tough position to be in.
ENTEN: You know, even though my Twitter handle is forecaster Enten, you know, I know how difficult it is to forecast the economy. It's like basically impossible. I mean, it's like trying to predict the economy a year from now is like trying to predict the weather a year from now.
SOLOMON: I talked to Muhammad al-Aryan, who's a very prominent economist, a few weeks ago on CNN International. I asked him how tough forecasting this economy. He said it's never been tougher. It has never been tougher for people who are doing -- who have been doing this for decades to try to understand what's coming down the road. So --
PROKUPECZ: Nothing makes sense, right? It is like nothing -- nothing is what it's -- nothing is aligning. It shouldn't --
SOLOMON: Well, you know why? I mean, the pandemic did so many things to the economy in terms of the supply chains, in terms of the stimulus checks, in terms of just the fact that we weren't spending because we were all at home. And so, that really did a lot of different things.
And so, we're all sort of living through, as one economist told me from the National Bureau of Economic Research, we are all living through one great experiment.
CAMEROTA: Oh, great, very confident. Um, all right, well, even if forecasting is hard, I am going to ask you all to forecast what the news for tomorrow is going to be.
PROKUPECZ: Harry is going to do the weather.
CAMEROTA: Harry is to forecast the weather and they're going to share their big scoops for tomorrow. We have "Tomorrow's News Tonight." That's next.
CAMEROTA: Okay, moments ago, and maybe you can see it on your screen, former President Donald Trump arriving at Trump Tower for the second time in just over a week to sit for a deposition. This time, it's a civil lawsuit filed by New York Attorney General Letitia James.
Okay, we'll keep an eye on that. Meanwhile, we're back with our panel of reporters. So, let's find out what stories they will be watching tomorrow. It's "Tomorrow's News Tonight." Arlette, what are you doing for tomorrow?
SAENZ: Well, I think a big focus tomorrow is going to be on this medication abortion case. Um, the Justice Department had asked the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals to issue a stay in the order because that Texas federal judge, he had put a pause until this coming Friday, um, from allowing his ruling to go into effect.
So, there's just lots of questions about whether this medication abortion is going to be available to American consumers past Friday. So, I think that's something that we will be watching to see, whether the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals rules on that.
Additionally, Joe Biden is off being Joe Biden in Ireland. And so, we will see what other antics he gets up to during the day. I think tomorrow is a lot more official. You know, today, he went towards some of the areas that were important to his own ancestral history. Tomorrow, he is meeting with the prime minister and other officials. But this is something people have been waiting for some time, for Biden to return.
CAMEROTA: Got it. Okay, Shimon, what are you working on?
PROKUPECZ: So, for tomorrow, you know, digging in more on the shooting in Louisville. There's this note. We're trying to figure out what the roommate found -- that was told to about -- the mother was given information about. So, we're hoping to learn more because it should shed some light on motive and what exactly was going on in his life.
And so, that's really -- that's the thing. Everyone is trying to figure out exactly why he did it. It's not clear. Clearly, something going on at work, perhaps.
CAMEROTA: Well, also, they said that he had mental health struggles. I think we would all like to know what those were.
PROKUPECZ: Yeah. The mother said, you know, there are some depression issues, maybe. But there's got to be something deeper, right? It's --
CAMEROTA: I don't know. But I think it would just be helpful because we're always trying to figure out how to stop.
CAMEROTA: Okay, Rahel, what are you keeping an eye out for tomorrow?
SOLOMON: So, I'm actually interviewing some -- one of the Nissan executives, the U.S. CEO. And so, I'll be talking to him about their electrification plans. I mean, we've talked so much even on the show this week about EV. And so, we've gotten some new data from the Gallup. I think it was where 41% of Americans say they actually don't plan to buy an EV because they're concerned about range anxiety, right? Where do they charge these EVs? They are also worried about the cost.
And so, you know, I think when I speak with him tomorrow, I'll be asking certainly about their plans, but also what they plan to do to try to get over some of those obstacles with American consumers.
CAMEROTA: Harry, I understand you're very concerned about your namesake.
ENTEN: That's exactly right. This is the big one. You know, obviously, King Charles is having his coronation soon in the next month or so. Prince Harry has announced that he is going to go and attend that. But the duchess, Megan, is not, in fact, going to attend. And I'm just interested from a public opinion standpoint, whether Prince Harry can revive his popularity over in the U.K.
So, I think there's just a lot of stories across the (INAUDIBLE), whether it be Joe Biden going over, whether it be Prince Harry going back. So, you know, look, we came from there, we had declared our independence, but I still find interests in our homeland.
SOLOMON: Is Harry -- is Harry Enten attending the coronation?
ENTEN: Um, you know, if we can get the higher ups at this company to pay for it --
-- I would be more than happy to join our friends over across the (INAUDIBLE) to be an official, um, palace reporter.
CAMEROTA: Got it. All right. Thank you all very much for all of that. We will look forward to all of that tomorrow. And also, be sure to tune in to "CNN THIS MORNING" tomorrow. What happens when artificial intelligence gets it wrong and makes false accusations? They're going to look into a high school student's cautionary tale.
All right, thanks so much for watching tonight. Our coverage continues now.