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CNN Tonight

Texas Shooting Leaves Eight Dead And Seven Wounded; IRS Whistleblower's Attorneys Meet With Congressional Investigators On Hunter Biden Probe; Policy Allowing U.S. To Expel Migrants Expires On Thursday; New Poll On 2024 Race Is Not Great News For President Biden. Aired 11p-12a ET

Aired May 08, 2023 - 23:00   ET




ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN HOST: Hi, everyone. Thanks so much for joining us for this hour where we bring you "Tomorrow's News Tonight." We have our great lineup of reporters to share their scoops. Here with me, we have Harry Enten, Athena Jones, Shimon Prokupecz, and Sara Murray. Great to have all of you, guys, on the couch tonight.

Okay, another Texas town is reeling after a mass shooting at an outlet mall over the weekend that killed eight people and wounded seven others. Tonight, we're learning more about the 33-year-old gunman and his actions leading up to the shooting.

Shimon Prokupecz is following the story. Okay, start with what's next in the story.

SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: I mean, ultimately, right now, you know, as much as we know about this individual and really the hate -- the hate that he believed in, really there is still this thing that they need to do, authorities, to figure out the motive. You know, is there something else going on here that perhaps sparked this? So, that's what investigators now are doing. You know, we've learned so much about him through his social media.

CAMEROTA: Yeah, what did we learn today?

PROKUPECZ: So, he believes -- you know, he's just a person who is filled with hate, anti-Black, anti-women, neo-Nazi kind of beliefs and things that he wrote about. So, we know he's 33 years old. He has all of this writing and all of this social media posts. We also know that and this is significant, is that he was at the mall casing it out, sort of figuring out when was the busiest time, when was the best time for him to launch his attack.

So, authorities have a lot of that information now. We know that he purchased the weapons from a private kind of sale. So, there was really no way for anyone to do any kind of background check. He was thrown out of the military, essentially, because of mental health issues.

CAMEROTA: Do we know any more details about that?

PROKUPECZ: No, we don't. That's the thing. Authorities have not said anything. They haven't said much. Hopefully, we'll get some answers in the coming days.

But based on his social media and some of the other information that is out there, we know a lot about this individual, certainly someone who is just filled with so much hate, and how he got his hand on weapons and what kind of safeguards perhaps should have been in place to prevent -- to prevent that. That is all now obviously being discussed.

CAMEROTA: Yeah. And in terms of the victims, some are children.

PROKUPECZ: Children, you know, siblings. One child lost pretty much entire family, lost his parents. Um, so, children, a 20-year-old security guard from the mall, other sisters who are from a local elementary school. So, really just again so much pain through these communities, you know, who are now reeling after such another horrific attack in Texas.

CAMEROTA: I mean, you've covered, obviously, many of these. We all have covered too many of these. You start to run out of angles to talk about in terms of, yes, it's mental health, yes, it's easy access to guns, yes, it's a hate. It is hard -- and sometimes, what I find is that we talk about all of this, and then we never really get the answer.

PROKUPECZ: We never get the answer. And we know the script, right? We know what the police are going to do. We know what the process is at this point. We've all become detectives now, right, because we all know how this works and what the police are going to do.

But there's really never any answers and it seems that there's never a solution. And so many people now all across this country are wondering, what do you do? How do we stop this because this is now almost a daily occurrence, right?

SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: And it feels like we used to talk about like how people would evade the laws, you know, and how they would sort of slipped through the cracks to get guns. And now, we're just talking about, you know, this is what the laws allow, that you can do these private sales, that in Texas, permitless carry is allowed, that there are just so many easy ways to get guns now.

I feel like we have the conversation less of sort of why did the safety nets not catch people and it is just kind of like they're not there.


PROKUPECZ: Or was it a straw buyer, right?

MURRAY: Right. Yeah.

PROKUPECZ: Was it some illegal weapon that was obtained? Now, these are weapons that being legally purchased sometimes in the days before the attack, you know, like we saw in Uvalde, like we saw in Louisville. These are -- these are people who are reacting very quickly to a certain feeling that they have and they go and they purchase these weapons legally. They walk in or through a private seller as we see here in this latest shooting.

ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: And surely, what you said, Sara, about how we used to talk about them breaking the law, the fact is a lot of these states have made it much easier to get a gun and to carry it without a permit. So, you're going to have a lot more guns kind of flooding the system.

But one thing I think is interesting, you often hear from Governor Abbott, is that the immediate response is mental health. It's almost like knee-jerk response. But what I see is that there's so much kind of diagnosing of the problem. They're stating that there are these mental health issues that aren't being addressed well by states, by the federal government, by communities.

My question is, are they making any efforts in Texas to do anything about access to mental health? I don't think they rank very high.

PROKUPECZ: No, they don't. If you go to a community like Uvalde, they will say, well, they've taken away our mental health, any kind of help that we've needed here, they have taken it away. Um, this is a thing that the governor likes to do in Texas. He comes out and says mental health right away. Same, you know, with Uvalde when they came out right away, mental health. Law enforcement officials, mental health.

But, you know, there are some people who are now, even Republicans, saying, look, something has to be done, we have to do something.

CAMEROTA: And in fact, in Texas, today, something interesting happened --


CAMEROTA: -- because, as you know, two Republicans joined with Democrats to -- now, again, this was procedural but they did vote out of committee, um, a bill that wants to raise the gun purchasing age in Texas from 18 to 21. So, that doesn't mean that they are going to vote for it on the floor. That doesn't mean it's going to pass on the floor of the state house, but they voted it out of committee. So, that is the first step.

PROKUPECZ: It's a small victory for the families in Uvalde and families of mass shooting victims to have this because in Texas, they didn't even think they can get this far. The fact that they fought so hard to get this is so meaningful.

CAMEROTA: So, the families were involved in lobbying for this?

PROKUPECZ: The Uvalde families were front and center. They were there testifying. I was there a couple weeks ago. I mean, heart-wrenching testimony from the family members who waited 13 hours. The committee made them wait 13 hours, close to midnight, and they finally testified. That's them today clapping.

CAMEROTA: Can you imagine, why did the committee make them wait?

PROKUPECZ: Oh, because they were busy on the floor arguing about other, like, other stuff. Um, and it was just ridiculous. And so, finally today -- and the only reason why people think this happened today is because of the shooting over the weekend.

HARRY ENTEN, CNN SENIOR DATA REPORTER: I mean, that's something we've seen over and over again, right? We get one of these mass shootings and then there's this initial sort of push for gun control legislation that if you don't capture the momentum in the moment, it just goes poof into the air.

I will note, you know, this piece of legislation to raise the minimum age to purchase firearms, quite popular in Texas, 21 plus, right? Over 70%. I believe it's 76% --

CAMEROTA: And nationally.

ENTEN: And nationally, over 80%. So, this is one of the many sorts of diagnosis or ways to solve the problem potentially that's quite popular nationally.

You know, another thing that I will sort of circle back on, you know, we were mentioning earlier on, you know, we've been on this couch before, Shimon and I having basically the same conversation about another mass shooting and it, you know, when that happens, I almost worry that we are going to become numb to the problem, right?

I actually ran a Google search earlier to see, you know, how often was the term mass shooting looked up. And I thought perhaps it had fallen off this year because we've become numb to the problem. In fact, it's up significantly, which to me is actually kind of hopeful in the sense -- obviously, mass shootings are bad, but we're not becoming numb to the problem. In fact, Americans are becoming more attuned to the problem.

PROKUPECZ: Also, I wonder if people are just scared and thinking more about -- I mean, I think about this when I go somewhere.

CAMEROTA: How could you not?

PROKUPECZ: Yeah. I mean, yes.

CAMEROTA: How could you not? I mean, it's part of all of our lives now.

PROKUPECZ: Yeah. So --

MURRAY: It's such a disconnect also between what, you know, policymakers are doing on this, which is very little, and the real fear that people have, the real emotions they have seeing this, reading about this, hearing about this, being afraid to go to the mall, to send their kids to school. There is a disconnect.

CAMEROTA: Yes. And what happens in a mall, a school, a synagogue, a church, a Walmart, a parking lot, you know, it's hard to not have yourself think about where you might have to encounter something like this.

JONES: I grew up in Texas. I'm from Texas. I'm used to that gun culture or people who like guns -- like their guns and are very happy to have their guns because they care about hunting.


People in my own family who have a lot of guns, they care about hunting. They're not about to commit crimes. But you do -- I was home the weekend -- it was just last weekend, I guess, when the Cleveland, Texas shooting happened just north of Houston.

I was just a few miles south and thinking people are going to get to the point where they can't say anything, they can't make any complaint in some of these states where you're seeing so many people with guns because they're going to be worried about how the other person is going to respond, and I think that's a sad commentary.

CAMEROTA: Yup, understood. All right, thank you all very much for that. Thanks for the reporting so much, Shimon.

Meanwhile, an IRS whistleblower claims that these claims are putting the Hunter Biden investigation back in the spotlight. So, what's going on behind the scenes and will we hear testimony? Sara is digging into this story for us, and she has got all of the details, next.



CAMEROTA: In IRS whistleblower alleges there is political interference coming from the Justice Department in the Hunter Biden investigation. The whistleblower's attorneys met with congressional investigators to explain what info they might share with Congress.

CNN's Sara Murray is here to fill us in. Sara, what happens next here?

MURRAY: Well, look, obviously, they want to hear from the whistleblower themselves, not just the attorney. But there is all this sort of wrangling that has to happen behind the scenes because the lawyer wrote to the House as well as to the Senate, to various committee chairs, saying, you know, my client wants to come in, wants to share with you this information about political interference.

And the House and the Senate do not always place people (ph) well together, as you might imagine, especially that Senate is being run by Democrats and House being run by Republicans who really want this information.

So, there is some wrangling going on behind the scenes to figure out how do you choreograph this. I mean, if you are the attorney and this is your client, you want your client sharing their story. You do not want two versions of this story floating around on Capitol Hill. So, that is what is going on kind of behind the scenes right now.

CAMEROTA: What is the whistleblower claiming?

MURRAY: So, this person claims that they are an IRS agent who is involved in a criminal investigation of a sensitive person, we know that to be Hunter Biden, and that there are political appointees who essentially prevented the case from being brought.

You know, this person also claims that they have information that would contradict testimony from a senior political appointee. We've learned that is Attorney General Merrick Garland. Take a listen to a little of what Merrick Garland has had to say about this Hunter Biden case.


MERRICK GARLAND, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: I have pledged not to interfere with that investigation, and I have carried through on my pledge.


MURRAY: He's like, look, I'm not interfering in this, the U.S. attorney in Delaware is going to be overseeing this, go wild. This whistleblower apparently has some kind of information that contradicts this.

PROKUPECZ: But here is the thing, though, right, the person that is investigating this, David Weiss, that is his name, he was appointed -- he is a Trump-appointee, right?

MURRAY: He is a Trump-appointee.

PROKUPECZ: And he has had the case for how long?

MURRAY: He has had the case for a couple of years now.


MURRAY: Then we've previously reported, my colleagues who've done great work on this, there have been a lot of issues in this case. There have been disagreements between IRS agents and FBI agents about the strength of the case.

There have been disagreements just about whether this kind of case can move forward and also about kind of, you know, Hunter Biden sort of mental state while he may have been committing some of these alleged crimes, which he has denied because, of course, we know, you know, he is an addict. He has acknowledged that. He was in recovery now. So --

CAMEROTA: But this Trump-appointee is still investigating and investigating the IRS portion of this as well.

MURRAY: So, this person is investigating at this point what we understand to be tax crimes and a false statement. So, you know, our understanding at this point is that these are still on the table. There has not been a decision to prosecute, not to prosecute.

You know, Garland also said in that testimony, look, if this is a person who faced an issue where he could not bring this case, he could come to me. There is a way you can bring this up to chain at the Justice Department and we could move this forward if David Weiss decides, you know, there is a chargeable case here.

PROKUPECZ: And also, Biden's attorneys just met, right, with DOJ?

MURRAY: Hunter Biden's attorneys, yeah, just met with DOJ to sort of try to make their case for why, you know, they think these charges are bogus.

CAMEROTA: Let's talk about what happened today in the E. Jean Carroll case because there were closing arguments.

MURRAY: That is right. They were pretty poignant closing arguments, I mean, on both sides. We heard from E. Jean Carroll's attorneys essentially calling Donald Trump a serial liar and saying, is this really who you're going to believe? They've talked about the impact that going public with these allegations has had on E. Jean Carroll's life. They've talked about, you know, the impact of the actual incident, the alleged rape, has had on her life.

And then we heard from Donald Trump's attorney in this case who basically said, look, they are trying to prey on your hatred that you might have for Donald Trump. People have strong opinions about him, we know that, but you can air those opinions out at the ballot box, not when it comes to this case.

They said, we didn't put on any witnesses because how do you prove a negative? How do you prove that Donald Trump did not rape this woman in this dressing room so many years ago?

JONES: Did they end up addressing why Donald Trump chose not to take the stand? I know his lawyers didn't think he should, but he at one point was saying he very much wanted to. Maybe that was part of a ploy. But do they have to confront that issue because many people might think that the jury would want to hear from Trump?

MURRAY: Yeah. I mean, his lawyers made the point that Donald Trump did not have to be there. And again, what are you going to say to prove a negative? How are you going to make a case that this is something that didn't happen? But it is going to be interesting to see how that weighs with the jury because they did hear from E. Jean Carroll, they did hear from a lot of witnesses on her side.

PROKUPECZ: They also heard from Trump.

MURRAY: Well, they heard from Trump in his deposition tape, right.

PROKUPECZ: Which was just remarkable.

MURRAY: For better or for worse.


PROKUPECZ: I mean, that was remarkable. I think that is really sort of -- they've used it, right? Her lawyers today used that --

MURRAY: They did.

PROKUPECZ: -- as a way to just sort of go at him and go against him.

MURRAY: Yeah. I mean, talking about, you know, the infamous tape, grabbed her by the "P." You know, Trump does not disavow those comments in his deposition. He says, you know, unfortunately or fortunately.


That is essentially true if you're a famous person. You kind of wonder how that sits with the jury to hear the unfortunately or fortunately line.

ENTEN: My question, you know, obviously, we are going to get an answer to this question soon enough, so it is probably not worth handicapping. But I have no concept of, you know, watching this case if there is a there there. Obviously, you know, it is a civil trial. It is not a criminal trial. So, you only have to get 51%. But, I mean, is there any concept of which way this case might actually go or we just have no clue at this point?

MURRAY: I think that is what so hard. You are talking about an allegation that is very, very old. We are also, you know, in a place that is very cognizant of the "me too" era. We know that there were a lot of allegations that have come to light recently that people did not feel comfortable bringing a long time ago. They felt like they were not going to be believed, that they were going to be ashamed, you know, and had good reason for that.

So, I really think, you know, it could be a jump ball for people to say, look, there is just not the kind of proof we need here. But again, you know, there are people who could watch that deposition, that Trump deposition, and have sort of a visceral reaction to what they are seeing and whether that kind of gives them the impression of if this is someone who do this or not.

CAMEROTA: So, we can expect a verdict as early as tomorrow?

MURRAY: So, the judge is going to instruct the jury tomorrow, let them start deliberating. I don't know. I'll be watching to see how long they deliberate for it. Do they think that this is like a slam dunk one way or another? You know, there is absolutely not enough proof or we absolutely believe E. Jean Carroll. We don't know how long they will deliberate for it.

CAMEROTA: Sara, thank you very much for all of that.

All right, now, we need to talk about this major border policy that is ending on Thursday. Tens of thousands of migrants are already gathered on the Mexican side of the border. How is the Biden administration preparing for this surge? Athena has the story for us.




CAMEROTA: More than 150,000 migrants waiting in Northern Mexico for the Trump era border policy, Title 42, to expire this Thursday. House Majority Leader Steve Scalise warning today that Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas's job is on the line.

Athena Jones is on top of this story for us. What is going to happen on Thursday?

JONES: Well, it is anybody's guess what exactly is going to happen, but it's very likely to be messy based on what we have already seen. Number one, all of those thousands of migrants lining up on the other side of the border. We know that there's going to be a lot of political fighting and finger-pointing within states like here in New York, between states. We know that Governor Abbott of Texas has been busing migrants to New York. He has resumed doing that. So, that's another area of concern.

But it is interesting because even folks on opposite sides of the aisle like Congressman Mike Lawler from Rockland County, that's about 30 miles north of New York, one of the counties where New York wants to send migrants, even that Republican congressman and Mayor Eric Adams here in New York City both say this is a federal issue. It is a federal problem and any sort of long-term solution is going to have to come from the federal government.

But as we know, this has been a very difficult problem for lawmakers to solve. It's not something that the Biden administration can do on their own. And the closest we've come, I think we all argue, is back in 2013, when the Senate passed a bipartisan immigration reform bill, but then it died in the House. I don't think there's any higher chance now that there are more eager -- people on Capitol Hill are more eager to participate.

CAMEROTA: Do you have numbers on that, Harry?

ENTEN: I mean, look, you have a republican House, you have a Senate that's basically divided 50/50 --

CAMEROTA: But, I mean, do you have numbers on how the public feel about this?

ENTEN: Oh, yeah, we have numbers on everything.

CAMEROTA: You do? You really do?


ENTEN: Come on.

CAMEROTA: I mean, that was basically rhetorical.

PROKUPECZ: Numbers, he wakes up.

ENTEN: I mean, look, when it comes to this particular, you know, ending this title, we know that the public is opposed to it, right? We know that that. That was what the polling showed us in the middle of last year. I have no reason to believe that has changed.

And more than that, you know, I can't think of a better issue to be in this sort of light up spot than this one for Donald Trump who, of course, won the republican nomination back in 2016 running on immigration. Now, it is back in the spotlight. This is setting up beautifully for him.

So, on the one hand, obviously, we have the E. Jean Carroll thing going on, which is not necessarily good for him, but on the other hand, you have this issue which is particularly good for him and he is running 30 points, 30, 35 points --

PROKUPECZ: How much different is what like the current administration, the Biden administration doing on the border versus what's let's say the Trump administration?


PROKUPECZ: Was this mean -- this has been --

JONES: We know this Title 42 was something that the Trump administration put in place and that Biden held on to. It was -- the reason was a public health issue.


JONES: It was because of the coronavirus. Now that that emergency is lifting, this is lifting along with it. You do have some democrats who said, maybe we can extend it. There as a bill being looked at there on the House. We know that House Republicans are planning to vote on an immigration bill very heavily focused on border security. They are planning to do that on Thursday. That is the day that Title 42 expires.

CAMEROTA: What's the Biden administration's plan? I know they're sending 1,500. They are surging some more military to the border, 1,500. Beyond that?

JONES: Those 1,500 troops are not going to be doing law enforcement. They're going to be helping fill the gaps. But they have announced a six-pillar plan. One of the things they want to do is encourage more asylum seekers, for instance, to apply in another country. So, before even dealing with the border.

But I have to tell you that the issue is really raising a lot of heated emotions here in New York because of the decision that Eric Adams has now made to bus migrants.

[23:30:04] At least he has a plan. He has announced as of last week to bus, they say, about 300 adult male migrants to hotels into counties north of the city. And those county officials are not having it. They say, we are not ready for that, we are not able to do that. Eric Adams is a hypocrite because he is doing to us what Governor Greg Abbott of Texas did to him.

CAMEROTA: Do we have some of that? Do we have --

JONES: We do. I believe we have. It was a very, very highly emotional press conference today with a lot of local officials. One of them is the county executive for Rockland County. That is Ed Day. He had some pretty harsh words for the mayor. Listen to that.


ED DAY, ROCKLAND COUNTY EXECUTIVE: The mayor is engaged in human trafficking of the worst kind. He is talking out of -- both sides of his mouth talking about how wonderful he is taking care of people. And what he is doing, he's putting them in the worst possible situation.


JONES: So, they are really, really angry. That same county executive also came out directly and called Adams a liar for saying that they had given proper notice to the counties. There is some back and forth there.

There is also -- the folks in the city side say that there are misunderstanding. For instance, that press conference in Rockland County, they were talking about 340 some adult males going into this hotel. Their concerns were about, you know, there is no transportation nearby. It is a hotel off of a roof. You know, a highway kind of on the side of the road. We would check it out.

They are concerned about their lack of capacity. They think that that number, 340, would be five times the number of homeless people currently in Rockland County. We are talking about a town of fewer than 5,000.

But the city officials have come back and said that, look, this is not -- it is 300 or so adult males -- up to 300, I should say, between two locations, not just that one hotel.

CAMEROTA: It still sounds complicated. I mean, it just sounds complicated if you don't have jobs and places for food, how long are they going to be able to live, and who is going to pay for them and all that.

JONES: That's the concern. The city says that they are going to pay to house these migrants, give them access to medical care, food, three meals a day, that sort of thing for four months. But their question is, what happens after four months?

MURRAY: This is not the only place that is going to be having these fights. I mean, sort of -- I don't want to say nickel and diming because these are human beings, but sort of going to figure out like what can you do with these people, what kind of services, and how many people can we actually accommodate, all because there isn't an appetite for real federal solution.

Yeah, Republicans will put forward their border security, but Republicans are also, you know, chomping at the bit to impeach Mayorkas. So, this is like a political opportunity for them to go after the Biden administration again.

JONES: And it is easy to raise fears about the concerns -- about an over -- tapping out the resources. Communities are feeling that they're already at capacity. And certainly, New York is feeling that. A lot of these officials today were saying, look, New York got a billion dollars in the state budget. Why are they now shipping their problems up to us?

New York would say, look, we are doing everything we possibly can to come up with this spot to put this influx that they all predict is going to come. They are predicting up to 800 migrants arriving in the city a day. They are talking about housing them everywhere from tents in Central Park, Prospect Park, the parking lot at city field which is the Met Stadium, YMCA, airplane hangar at JFK. So, they're really pulling out all of the stops to figure out a way to deal with this.

It's a real sign that this is -- it is going to be a big issue and it is not going to go away very quickly. Up in Rockland County, they are talking about ways they can block these buses from even coming.

PROKUPECZ: They are talking about the hotels, right? They are talking about --

JONES: Fining them.

PROKUPECZ: -- hotels like $2,000 a night.

JONES: $2,000 a person a day because it is against code. The city's plan is to house these migrants in these hotels for four months. But the local ordinances in Rockland County, for instance, where this one hotel is, they don't allow someone to stay in a hotel for more than 30 days. So, that's illegal.

PROKUPECZ: But no one -- none of these folks in Rockland County have been yelling at Abbott about what he has been doing, right? It's just like, you know, they're yelling at Eric Adams kind of --

CAMEROTA: Just because he's getting closer. It's not in my backyard issue. So, suddenly now that it is encroaching in their backyard, suddenly now they have obviously a vested interest and don't have a plan. And it's -- this is a tough one because it's no longer just the border states that have been shouldering the burden of this for years.

So, by send -- I think that Governor Abbott and Governor DeSantis, by sending it -- them -- some migrants to New York and have gotten to their attention.

PROKUPECZ: Yeah. CAMEROTA: Making a real point.

ENTEN: I was just going to say, we've been trying to do immigration reform since before I was born. I mean, that is really what is going on here. It just seems like, you know, we started the show, we were talking about gun violence, mass shootings, we can't seem to solve that problem. Immigration reform, it seems like we can't seem to solve that problem. And honestly, it feels kind of overwhelming, you know? We used to be, yes, we can.


Now, it's like, apparently, we can't.

JONES: Politics are not getting things done. They are not bringing the solutions, it seems.

PROKUPECZ: Who does it favor?

CAMEROTA: That -- all of that is certainly the feeling of a lot of Americans. Thank you very much for the update. Obviously, we will be watching that very closely. Then there's this new poll on how voters feel about President Biden and his age, his handling of the economy, and the potential rematch against Donald Trump. It is not great news for Biden.

Harry is going to walk us through the numbers next and what we need to pay attention for. He is ready. I've never seen a readier face than that.



CAMEROTA: Republican Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, who is expected to announce that he's running for president later this month, is lobbying some harsh words at President Biden tonight.


SEN. TIM SCOTT (R-SC): I think he is failing his job because he is incompetent. I don't -- I refuse to say because he is too old or he's too frail or he's -- I think the bottom line is he has been co-opted by the radical left in his party.


CAMEROTA: So, a new poll shows the president's age is a concern for voters. It also shows that Donald Trump is leading President Biden in a potential rematch. Harry has the poll numbers. What do we need to know, Harry?

ENTEN: Well, why don't we take a walk over to the magic wall? Well, I'm going to get some exercise then.


CAMEROTA: This is what passes for exercise in Harry's life.

ENTEN: At 11:40 p.m.?

CAMEROTA: You're winded.

PROKUPECZ: Up since like what, five?

ENTEN: Something like that. So, why don't we take a look at this ABC News/Washington Post poll. What do we see? We see Donald Trump up by six points, 45% to 39%. You know, this is just one poll.

But one thing that is so interesting to me about this is every single ABC News/Washington Post poll so far done this season has had Donald Trump ahead of Joe Biden. There have been three of them so far in 2024 cycle. Compare that to the 2020 entire cycle. Zero. Count them. Zero of the ABC News/Washington Post poll had Trump ahead of Biden.

So, this is very clearly a different picture. Still, I, of course, have to point out the other polls, right? This is my job. I like looking at averages. And if we look at some other national polls that have come out over the last month and a half, Biden is ahead of Trump in all of them. In IPSOS, Biden is up by five. "Wall Street Journal," Biden is up by three. Quinnipiac, Biden is up by two.

But I think the large message that you should take away from all of this polling data is that the race for president, of course, the election wouldn't be for a while, but at this particular point, it is quite tight, which is very different from the picture we saw at this point in the 2020 cycle. Now, my exercise is done, and I'm going to --

CAMEROTA: Come back or you must be exhausted.

ENTEN: Whew!

CAMEROTA: You must be exhausted. All right, so, Jeff Zeleny was out on the campaign trail in Michigan last week. He asked a voter what he thought of a Biden-Trump rematch. So, we will play this.


NANCY WAGNER, MICHIGAN VOTER: I think it sounds awful. I think it sounds awful. You want to know why?


You know --


WAGNER: Well, I think we need a new generation of leaders. I think we need people with fresh ideas. I feel if it were a rematch, we would get the same conversation, we would get the same pathology. So, I personally would hate that. (END VIDEO CLIP)

CAMEROTA: A very astute voter there. That was a woman, obviously. Forget my "he" pronoun. Um, but the point is that voter -- it is interesting that this is how it is shaping up because voters don't want a rerun.

ENTEN: No, they don't want a rerun. In fact, we've seen that in poll after poll after poll. This, to me, though feels a little bit like deja vu, not of 2020, but of 2016 election. Why do I say that? Because that was the first election in modern era in which both candidates had an unfavorable rating above a favorable rating. That is, they were both majority disliked. And that is what the polls suggest right now for both Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

So, ultimately, what this election may come down to, if in fact those are the two major party nominees, is the voters who do not like either one of them, which could account for upwards of a third of the electorate, who do they go for? Do they go for Donald Trump or Joe Biden?

Back in 2016, they went for Donald Trump. Therefore, he won the presidency. But the polling so far suggests that that group of voters who do not like either Joe Biden or Donald Trump are far more evenly split. That is really the only way Joe Biden can win a reelection given how low is approval ratings are.

PROKUPECZ: The thing is I was kind of surprised by this poll. Most people were. But the whole thing has been, oh, Biden versus Trump in a general election. Biden would have the upper hand. Right? That sort of been a lot of the chatter. I think -- I don't know. I sort of have felt that is the way the Biden --

CAMEROTA: You think it's an outlier?

PROKUPECZ: I don't know. I mean, what do I know about polls?

CAMEROTA: Is that --

ENTEN: We went through that lovely thing. Slide number three, in fact, showed us that --


CAMEROTA: You're not dismissing it?

ENTEN: No, I'm not dismissing it.

PROKUPECZ: That is what I'm saying, yeah.

ENTEN: I would not dismiss Gary Langer who is a very strong pollster with the ABC News --


ENTEN: -- and Scott Clement. The rest of those folks over at "The Washington Post." They have a very good history of getting elections right.


ENTTEN: So, I do not dismiss it. But I think it's important to put into the context of other numbers that suggest, in fact --

PROKUPECZ: Were you surprised by that?

ENTEN: Not given the other ABC News/Washington Post polls that have come out so far this cycle. This is the third one that had Trump ahead of Biden. So, no, I was not surprised. Maybe I was surprised at the size of the margin, but I wasn't surprised by the fact that Joe Biden was trailing Donald Trump.


MURRAY: So, what did you think of the economic numbers? Because those stood out to me as just, you know, how many people thought that Donald Trump was a better steward of the economy. I think it was like 54% when he was president compared to Joe Biden. I think it was like 36% who said they thought Joe Biden was a better steward.

If I'm Joe Biden, I'm thinking about how important these, you know, pocketbook issues are to voters. I don't think I would be very happy to see that number either.

ENTEN: I don't think I would be particularly happy to see that number if I had a job in the White House. but I will point out, you know, that the economy was Donald Trump's strength during his presidency. Right? His approval ratings on the economy consistently ran ahead of his approval ratings overall.

If voters were just basing their 2020 vote based upon the economy, he probably would've won reelection. Now, the gap is obviously widened, right? I think the real question is going to be heading into 2024, how dominant is the economy as an issue? Because in the 2022 midterms, much to our surprise, a lot of folks, it was not as dominant of an issue as I think lot of us thought it would be.

PROKUPECZ: But also, in the poll, the potential criminal charges, I thought that was really interesting. A lot of people felt that -- I think the majority of folks felt that he should face some kind of punishment or some kind of penalty.

ENTEN: Yeah. This has been consistently right. You know, voters don't necessarily trust Donald Trump when it comes to --


ENTEN: -- all these allegations. And yet -- and yet, he still leads in a number of these polls, including this one. So, you know, voters are really having this balancing act where they don't like either one and it's like, all right, I guess it's going to be this guy.

JONES: My question is, in those instances when there is so much dislike, this being the second time around, how close is ABC tracking enthusiasm? Because how many of those people who are just going to sit out? Certainly, among younger people who are becoming discouraged.

I think some of the numbers they noted were about people who supported Biden last time around and his approval being soft among people under 30, people living in cities, that sort of thing. How much is they're tracking how likable they are to ultimately vote, to make a pick?

ENTEN: Yeah. So, you know, this is something I've looked at for a long period time, which is, you know, trying to understand how enthusiasm converts into actually voting, right?

And what we know from the poll data that we've seen so far, there was this Cornell College poll that came out, done by (INAUDIBLE), I believe it was out in March, and what it actually showed was that Biden voters were about as likely to say as they were going to vote as Trump voters back from 2020.

Despite the fact that we've had other poll numbers suggest that the Trump voters are more enthusiastic, when it actually comes to saying that they're going to vote, the Trump and Biden voters were about at the same level.

So, this may be a case where a lot of people don't necessarily like the choices they are handed, especially on the democratic side, but they really don't like the other guys, so they are going to come out and vote.

CAMEROTA: Harry, thank you very much for all of that. Up next "On the Lookout," our reporters tell us what stories they are looking out for on the horizon.




CAMEROTA: We are back with our fantastic panel of reporters to tell us what stories they're keeping an eye on. We call it "On the Lookout." Okay, Harry, go.

ENTEN: Victory Day in Europe was 78 years ago. Believe it or not, the end of the World War II in Europe and there are less than 200,000 American servicemen who are still alive at this particular point. I believe there were upwards of near like 15 million who served during the war. So, just a shout out to all of them. A great job. Won the war. You know, it was something my father was always so proud of as a young boy back then. So, way to go, and we can do to remember them.

CAMEROTA: Thank you. Thank you for that. Athena?

JONES: Well, I want to see what happens with this Title 42. It's going to lift on Thursday. What is the border going to look like? But also, what are these counties up here are going to do?

Now, it's not just Rockland County, Orange County both declaring a state of emergency, trying to keep these busloads of migrants out, but they would be very specific today about what their plan was to make that not happen, apart from fines or possibly an injunction.

And so, who knows what kinds of dramatic scenes we can see play out if they do try to send busloads of migrants.

CAMEROTA: Where will you be on Thursday? Do you know yet?

JONES: I'm doing a Title 42 story because I believe it lists in the evening.


JONES: So, during the day, I'll be going to Connecticut because I've been talking to organizations that help asylum seekers and refugees, which are different. Asylum seekers cannot work legally. And so -- until they get work authorizations. So, I'm doing a story, looking at kind of the human side of recently arrived immigrants from Central America and how they kind of make their way --


JONES: -- once they get here.


JONES: Because that's what's going to be waiting --

CAMEROTA: Absolutely.

JONES: -- for all the folks.

CAMEROTA: We'll be looking out for that. Thank you very much. Shimon?

PROKUPECZ: Uh, so, digging in more in the shooting in Texas. We're hoping we can hear from officials tomorrow. So far, none of the investigators have had any press conferences. they've not taken any questions.

So, we're hoping that tomorrow, perhaps after a few days of them conducting their investigation, gathering some information, they will start to answer some questions because up to now, they have not answered one single question.

CAMEROTA: No one knows how to get officials to answer questions like Shimon does. So, I'm glad you are on the case. Okay, Sara, what are you looking out for?

MURRAY: I guess I'm your pop culture moment of levity this week. There are a lot of important stories happening, but also, Taylor Swift's East Coast swing begins later this week. We are a little bitter. She is not coming to Washington, D.C. But I will be seeing her in Philadelphia later this week. And man, this is a woman who knows how to gin up --

PROKUPECZ: Wait, how many times have you already seen her?

MURRAY: I've maybe seen her twice. [23:55:00]

This is my third time.

PROKUPECZ: That is right. This is her third time going.

MURRAY: Always counting. There's new stuff happening. She announced that soon she is going to release Taylor's version of "Speak Now." Everyone wants to know who she's dating.

PROKUPECZ: Didn't you go to like Arizona?

MURRAY: Yes, for an opening night. Obviously, there's so much intrigue now. People want to know what happened. She split up with Joe Alwyn. There is a lot to discuss.

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh. Wow. Thank you for educating us.

MURRAY: A lot of Taylor Swift headlines this week.

PROKUPECZ: Very good. There we go.

CAMEROTA: Sara, I did not know you are a Swift through and through.

PROKUPECZ: You won't be here tomorrow. I don't listen.


CAMEROTA: So good to know. All right, thank you, guys, very much. Great to have you here tonight. So, tomorrow on "CNN This Morning," sending your child to school only four days a week? It's a growing trend. We have data on the impact. It's (INAUDIBLE) students and parents. So, are you on the show tomorrow?

ENTEN: I am. It is my segment.


It's my segment tomorrow morning.

PROKUPECZ: You're going to sleep tomorrow.

CAMEROTA: We are teasing Harry's segment. All right, it's going to be even better than we thought.

Thanks for watching "CNN Tonight." Our coverage continues now.