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Senate Passes Debt Ceiling Bill to Avert Default; Anti-LGBTQ Laws Signed by DeSantis Put Damper on Pride Events; Synagogue Shooting Survivors Take the Stand; National Eating Disorders Association Shuts Down Its A.I. Chatbot; Protests Across Florida Over DeSantis Immigration Law. Aired 11p-12a ET
Aired June 01, 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: Hi, everyone. Thanks for tuning in to this hour where we bring you "Tomorrow's News Tonight." We have our great line of reporters here with me: Sara Fischer, Polo Sandoval, Danny Freeman, and Alayna Treene. Also joining us with the breaking news, Melanie Zanona from Capitol Hill.
Melanie, has the U.S. avoided economic catastrophe at this hour?
MELANIE ZANONA, CNN CAPITOL HILL REPORTER: They have, Alisyn, but just barely with just a few days to go before that default deadline and really just a few votes to spare here. The final vote tally was 63 to 36, and they needed 60 votes to be able to pass this in the Senate.
But I want to give you the breakdown of who voted in support. It was 46 Democrats who voted in favor, along with 17 Republicans. That was the coalition that banded together to get this over the finish line, and that means that the opposition was mostly Republicans here with just five Democrats voting against this bill. But ultimately, they got it done. It now heads to President Biden's desk for signature.
And it was no easy feat to get here because there was opposition on both sides of the aisle. Democrats did not like the stricter work requirements for food stamp recipients. They didn't like some of the energy permitting reform.
And Republicans thought the bill didn't go far enough in order to limit spending. They also don't like that it's going to hike the debt ceiling until 2025. They wanted a shorter debt ceiling hike so they can get another bite of the apple.
But this was a really big test for the leadership, both for President Biden, for Speaker Kevin McCarthy, really for all the party leadership here.
And all the while, the economy was hanging in the balance. And at the end of the day, that is really what was driving a lot of members to support this deal, even those who did not like the deal. They felt like they had to swallow it and that they did not want an economic catastrophe.
So, that is the bottom line here. They did avert a crisis but just barely, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: And so, Melanie, you've been on Capitol Hill all day. I mean, for days, weeks about this. So, just take us behind the scenes. Is this what was expected? Are these numbers and this close to margin, is this what people were anticipating all day?
ZANONA: Well, there was a really big bipartisan vote in the House. There was over 300 members who supported this. They only need 218. So, the thinking was that it was going to give a huge boost of momentum for things over in the Senate. But in the last hours here, there was a lot of concern expressed from defense hawks, appropriators, really Republicans from all across the conference who had various different concerns here.
But in terms of whether this is expected, Alisyn, we did know that -- expect we are going to be able to pass this. But it was never a sure thing because throughout this process, there were blowups, there were breakdowns.
You really had these officials from the White House and speaker's office sitting down trying to hammer out a complicated fiscal agreement, something that usually would take months to figure out, and they had to do it in a matter of weeks.
Not to mention Speaker McCarthy. He is new to the leadership position. He was really an untested leader. Him and Biden didn't have the same working relationship that him and Mitch McConnell had. But in the end, they got it done, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: Melanie, thank you very much. We want to go live now to Majority Leader Chuck Schumer speaking about this.
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): Maybe a little tired, but we did it. So, we are very, very happy. Default was the giant sword hanging over America's head. But because of the good work of President Biden as well as Democrats in the House and Democrats in the Senate, we are not defaulting.
Democrats said from the start, we must take default off the table. For a long time, Republicans, many Republicans in the House resisted. House Republicans were ready to take default hostage in order to pass a radical, hard-right agenda that never could have passed with the American people.
So, tonight's outcome is very welcome news for our economy and for American families. I thank my colleagues for the good work tonight. I commend President Biden and his team for producing a sensible compromise under the most difficult of circumstances.
So many of the destructive provisions in the republican bill are gone because we persisted, and we kept insisting that default is off the table. We will not be defaulting, and we will not be passing the hard- right extreme agenda, virtually no part of it.
That is thanks to the Senate and House Democrats, and to President Biden. But don't just listen to me. The proof is in the pudding. House Democrats swept the vote, 34 to 117. A higher percentage and number of Democrats voted for this in the House than Republicans did. And it was just repeated in the Senate. Overwhelming majority of Senate Democrats voted for the bill and majority of Republicans voted against it.
And it is not just how Democrats carry the bill to the finish line but why, why we get more votes. We got more votes because the bill beat back the worst of the republican agenda. This exercise was a -- basically, this was an exercise in where the American people were at and they are much closer to where we are than where they are.
Of course, nobody got everything they wanted. There was give on both sides. But this agreement was a very good outcome because it accomplished three extremely important goals.
First and foremost, we prevented a catastrophic default that would have decimated our economy, raise costs, and inflicted unnecessary pain on tens and tens and tens of millions of American families.
Second, the bill preserves the lion share of the historic investments we made to grow our economy, fix our infrastructure, make the U.S. more competitive on the world stage, which the republican caucus in the House seemed intent on tearing down. They didn't get to do that.
And third and very importantly, we did a very good job of taking the worst parts of the republican plan that would have hurt so many families. We took those worst parts off the table.
Let me say it again, tonight's vote is a good outcome because Democrats did a very good job of taking the worst parts of the republican plan off the table. That's why Democrats voted overwhelmingly for this bill while Republicans certainly in the Senate did not.
Remember what House Republicans originally wanted when they showed us their plan and compared it to the bill we are now sending to the president's desk. The difference is as stark as night and day. Republicans wanted to gut investments we made in the IRA, the Inflation Reduction Act, that are driving a new generation of American manufacturing billions and billions of investments and thousands upon thousands of jobs. We fought and fought.
CAMEROTA: We have been listening there to Majority Leader Chuck Schumer taking a victory lap because the Senate has just passed the debt ceiling bill, which is what we have spoken about for so many weeks because it could have been catastrophic economically and globally.
Interesting, guys, not the most conciliatory tone. He got in several digs at his Republican colleagues. He kind of revisited what he said were them holding this, you know, debt ceiling hostage. It is an interesting tone for tonight, which is a successful night.
DANNY FREEMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I also -- I didn't see -- I didn't hear the words "McCarthy" in that, right? A lot of House Democrats, a lot of Senate Democrats. I didn't hear the word "McCarthy" in that speech.
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And correct me if I'm wrong here, but this is certainly not kind of the kumbaya moment that nobody expected after this period of compromise. It is something that clearly, according to the senator from New York, is not something that we'll be hearing.
SARA FISCHER, CNN MEDIA ANALYST: This does not last forever, right? We are going to have to revisit this a couple year down the road when we need to vote on this again. Why do we keep getting --
ALAYNA TREENE, CNN POLITICAL REPORTER: 2025.
FISCHER: Yeah, 2025. Why do we keep getting put in this position? Are we ever going to come to a moment where you think these two parties can pass something and we are not down to the very last minute, or do you think this is just the way our country operates?
ALAYNA TREENE, CNN POLITICAL REPORTER: It's not the way our county operates, it's the way Congress operates. I mean, it is so classic every time and it is not just with this debt ceiling. We're going to see this again later this year when it comes to averting a government shutdown and funding the government.
The Republicans are going to do this again. They go right up to the deadline and then that's when everything magically comes together. Everyone tonight was referring -- this is the term we use on Capitol Hill, they call it Senate magic, when you can move through things so quickly. We saw that tonight partly because they knew that nothing would change in the bill, they had to get this done to avert a default, but they also wanted to enjoy their weekend.
That's a good question, Sara. I think a big part of this as well that a lot of people in Congress are talking about this, why do we do this every time with the debt ceiling? Why does this have to be a massive fight, go up to the edge and make the debt ceiling something that hold --
-- parties hostage over? That is what they did here. And it doesn't necessarily -- there's definitely a conversation that is happening both in Washington and on Capitol Hill but also within the financial community about whether there should be a fight every year or every two years over the debt ceiling.
I mean, a lot of what they thought about in this current negotiation, in this bill that they just passed, was about the budget. That is something that normally is negotiated at the end of September, at the end of the fiscal year. Instead, Republicans really held Democrats to task here over this and forced budget negotiations to be a part of this because everyone knows that you need to pass a debt limit suspension, you need to raise the debt ceiling and avoid a default.
And so, because of that, they try to find leverage in it and that's why we consistently see this be such a controversial negotiation. But they did it this time and they avoided default.
CAMEROTA: Yeah. I mean, it does -- excuse me -- it does start to feel like the boy who cried wolf because we do go through this exercise so often. But, you know, we are happy that they did it.
The White House announcing that President Biden will address the nation tomorrow night on all of this, on averting default, in this bipartisan budget agreement. CNN, of course, will cover it live. That is tomorrow night at 7:00 Eastern.
Let us go back to Melanie for a moment. So, Melanie, it is interesting. I mean, there was a moment where they could have taken pride and it being bipartisan, and as we have been discussing, you know, it was McCarthy and Biden coming together and having to compromise. That was not the tone that Senator Schumer took tonight.
ZANONA: No, because, Alisyn, it is politics here. I think each side in the room, they obviously had to come together and find a compromise. But they also needed to find a deal that they could walk away with and sell to their members. And you have to understand both Chuck Schumer and Speaker Kevin McCarthy were facing internal pressures from their respective flanks, the right flanks and the left flanks who are really unhappy with how this deal turned out.
But something else that really stood out to me was the way Chuck Schumer was framing the messaging there. He was touting what wasn't in the bill and what they were able to protect. They talked about the fact that they were able to avert any cuts to Medicaid. That was something that Republicans wanted in their bill that they had passed on a party line vote in the House.
Whereas Republican messaging is focused on all the things they did get in the bill, the impacts in spending, the permitting reform, the debt ceiling hike, a number of things (INAUDIBLE) IRS funding, unspent COVID money, a number of priorities.
But at the end of the day, as Chuck Schumer alluded to, not everyone is going to love what is in the deal and that is usually the sign of a true compromise in Washington.
CAMEROTA: There you go. Melanie Zanona, thank you for bringing us the moment-by-moment developments and the finishing -- you know, reaching the finish line. Really helpful. Thank you.
All right, it is raining over Pride parades in Florida this month in the wake of fears that the sunshine state's new law may shut down drag performances. We're going to go there live, next. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
CAMEROTA: June 1st is the start of Pride Month and that usually means parades and celebrations will be taking place across the country.
My panel is back with me. We are also joined by my old work husband, now estranged, Victor Blackwell, who I miss all the time. He is live in Orlando for us.
VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: Victor, it is so great to see you. So, tell us what will Pride events look like in Florida nowadays with new laws.
BLACKWELL: Well, you know, these events, even with all the excitement in the events, they always require a degree of vigilance, especially so this year, not only because of the climate that we're seeing but also because of this new law, the protection of children that many believe targets public drag shows.
It doesn't mention the word "drag" at all but because of some of the references, it could be used to create some consequences around these parades and events here at Pride. There are organizers, there are cities who don't know if it will be enforced but they cannot afford to take that risk.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BLACKWELL (voice-over): Pride across Florida will be noticeably less colorful this year. Festival organizers are making significant changes or canceling altogether some LGBTQ plus celebrations. They fear potential consequences from Governor DeSantis's new law that many believe targets public drag performances, a mainstay at Pride events.
UNKNOWN: Welcome, welcome to St. Cloud's first Pride event.
KRISTINA BOZANICH, COORDINATOR OF PRIDE, ST. CLOUD: It is very disheartening.
BLACKWELL (voice-over): Kristina Bozanich, coordinator of Pride in St. Cloud, cancelled the Orlando area event that was planned to include drag performers.
According to the new law signed by DeSantis just weeks ago, local governments are banned from issuing public permits for events that include some adult live performances. Venues risk: Steep fines, losing license if a child is present, knowingly admitting a child would be a first-degree misdemeanor.
BOZANICH: Once the bill is signed, I said, we can restructure the event. We will make sure it is only 18 and up for that portion. They went and talked with all the performers and came back to me and said, we're really sorry but we just don't feel safe.
BLACKWELL (voice-over): Organizers in Port St. Lucie canceled its annual Pride parade. They reached an agreement with the city to host a slim-down festival. Drag performers were welcome, but anyone under 21 was not.
STEPHANIE PEYMAN, STUDENT: I was in the closet for so many years. I still face hatred and oppression. I can't go to my own Pride fest?
BLACKWELL (voice-over): Kissimmee Pride is on. But drag, indoors only.
STEPHANIE BECHARA, COMMUNICATIONS AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS MANAGER, CITY OF KISSIMMEE: Drag bingo will be taking place inside of our center and it will be an event where we will be requiring IDs, and we are also asking folks to go ahead and preregister online to participate.
BLACKWELL (voice-over): John Paonessa's Orlando restaurant, Hamburger Mary's, hosts drag shows most nights. He is part of the federal lawsuit against the state. He claims he is losing business because of a new law. DeSantis's office has not responded to a CNN request for comment on the lawsuit.
JOHN PAONESSA, RESTAURANT OWNER: We have a street party with a stage with the performers out front during Price. We usually get 3 or 4,000 people on the street watching.
That's something we can't do.
BLACKWELL (voice-over): At the start of a month, that's in part a celebration of visibility. Some feel that the Sunshine State is shoving them back into darkness.
PAONESSA: Now, with the governor stepping and the legislation that is going through, it is -- we are moving back in time. It is unfortunate for us and everybody else in this state because what they're doing is heartbreaking.
CAMEROTA: Victor, it is so interesting because it is one thing to read a law in black and white on paper and it is another to see the real- world impact, which is what you're showing us.
And so, in terms of the numbers of people who turned out, you know, just a support, just to see the parade, just to have fun, what are they expecting this year? Will they be drastically lower numbers?
BLACKWELL: Well, the answer to that is they don't know. Right here in Central Florida, the big show here is gay days. Typically, north of 150,000 people come here to Central Florida for events and parties. They go to the theme parks and wear red shirts to be seen. The point is visibility.
But people are split here. Some say that this is not the time to shrink with these new laws, more than 400 by some counts across the country, and certainly the laws here in Florida. This is the time to stand up as an element of resistance and resilience. Others say that the threats are real.
What we're seeing in department stores, what we're seeing, graffiti and vandalism, that's targeting the gay community. People just cannot take that physical risk. So, they really don't know how many people are going to show up. Today was the start of the festivals.
TREENE: Victor, this is Alayna here. Thank you for that. I mean, I agree with Alisyn. To see the real-world impact of these laws is really moving. Are people moving out of Florida, do you know, because of these laws? Have people of the LGBTQ community decided that they no longer feel like they can live in the state and they need to leave in order to feel like they can be a part of their community and they can celebrate in the way that we are seeing on tape here?
BLACKWELL: Listen, anecdotally, Kristina Bozanich, who I spoke with, she said that she has friends who are leaving. She has parents, friends who have children who are of the LGBTQ community who they just don't feel that their children are safe, so they are making plans to leave.
We don't have statistics to show that there is a mass exodus from Florida because of the change in these laws. But there are other stories here. People say that, listen, I don't feel safe here, and they are making plans to go to other places where they feel like they can have that degree of security.
CAMEROTA: Yeah. Polo has a question for you, too.
SANDOVAL: Really, he answered part of it, which is the -- that this is also a moment for people in the community to send a clear message to a presidential candidate by attending gay days. Victor, do you get a sense of that on the ground when you speak to people there, that they are there to send a message specifically to perhaps the governor?
BLACKWELL: Yes. Some are certainly here to send a message. And again, part of Pride is visibility, part of Pride is resistance. You know, the first Pride, more than 50 years ago now, was led in part by drag queens standing up not just to the potential for jailing or some legal consequence but physical violence.
And there are some Pride events across this area who say that in that spirit, they will show up. Specifically, on the element of drag, I think we sent in to you, one of the events for Gay Days is drag queen bingo in which many others organizations and festival across the state, they are putting their drag events behind closed doors, they are requiring I.D.
But if you look at the advertisement in red letters, highlighted in yellow, it says "all age is welcome." We spoke with the CEO of Gay Days. He says they are not doing anything wrong. They have invited the governor to come to drag queen bingo. That's not going to happen. But they are saying that, listen, what we are doing is not offensive, we are not doing anything loot, and they are moving on as expected. Let me add one other thing here. The hotel lit up behind me, notwithstanding. I lived in Florida for several years, I've been in this part of the state during Pride Month. Typically, it is covered in rainbow (INAUDIBLE) because there are so many people who come here. We're not seeing as much of that. We had to look for a space for a live shot relative to the story tonight.
It is hard to prove a negative, but is that all blamed on the new laws here? Possibly not.
Maybe these businesses are also watching what happens at Target and the backlash they are receiving, the backlash against Budweiser, the proposed boycott against Chick-fil-A for their new DEI posting as well.
So, we are not seeing every store front covered in Pride displays as we typically would see. Now, I make allowance for this being day one, maybe that will change, but it is not like it has been in at least the last five or 10 years across this part of Florida having been here for a couple of days now.
CAMEROTA: Well, it is hard to imagine that that is a coincidence and that it isn't being impacted by the new laws. So helpful, Victor, to have you there on the ground for us to give us the real flavor of what's happening and what it looks like there. Great to see you as always. Come back again and report any time on the show. I hope to see you soon.
BLACKWELL: I will be back when I am invited. Thank you.
CAMEROTA: Okay. Fantastic. All right, now to this, the survivors of the mass shooting at the Pittsburgh synagogue taking a stand today. Danny is going to bring us what that was like right after this.
CAMEROTA: More survivors of the 2018 mass shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue testifying today at the shooter's death penalty trial. This afternoon, an officer, who was disabled in the shooting, took the stand. And Danny, I know you were in Pittsburgh earlier for us this week covering this trial. So, tell us what is happening in court.
FREEMAN: Yeah, I mean, the past couple of days, the trial just started on Tuesday. We had opening statements from both the defense and the prosecution. And then every hour after hour of the past three days have just been survivor after survivor. We heard some radio dispatch and 9-1-1 dispatch as well. We heard 9-1-1 calls. It has been an emotionally challenging and intense couple of days.
But just (INAUDIBLE) you mentioned that officer. Like I said, we have seen and heard from a number of different people. The officer, his name was Daniel Mead, he was at the police station which is actually just a couple of blocks from the synagogue. He testified that he ran over. That's how close he was to the actual synagogue with his partner. He was there for only a few moments when the gunman, Robert Bowers, shot him and he described how his hand basically exploded.
And again, just one of the many, many horrific and terrifying and just very visceral testimonies that we've heard over the past couple of days.
CAMEROTA: You know, Danny, it's so interesting. I think that -- I know I've had this experience. I'm sure all of you have had this experience in reporting. A lot of people out in the public come out and say, how can you do it? How can you report on something so devastating? How do you not cry? How do you stay sane? How do you hear these stories again and again? Do you have a system for when you're reporting something very emotional, what you do?
FREEMAN: Listen, I mean, I think that -- what I would say first is that I think that, you know, sometimes reporters, we do get emotional. Sometimes, we do cry. We do -- you can't not feel it. And again, we've been listening to these 9-1-1 calls where you hear in some cases some of these congregation members, some of their last moments. You hear the gunfire that takes them.
But I think in this particular case, I am sure the others have experienced this in other instances, perhaps in mass shootings. We saw Shimon in Uvalde, right? There are a lot of people who want these stories to be told. And that is our job. And that's how I get through it, frankly.
You know that you are there to make sure what happens in that courtroom gets out to the public because it is horrible. They are proving right now, the prosecution, they're trying to prove that it was based in hate and that's worth shining a light on.
CAMEROTA: I totally agree. I'm glad that you said that because we never force anybody to go on camera. They come to us and they tell us their story because they want their story told and they want their loved ones not to have been killed in the end.
FREEMAN: I would say quickly, you know, this is an interesting case because we are seeing some exhibits, right? Every day, we get a little bit more some photographs, new body camera footage that we haven't had. But a lot of the most intense stuff, the public will never see. The public won't hear some of those 9-1-1 calls because there was a court order that said they're too graphic and they won't be put out.
So, again, it feels more important to us accurately and perhaps graphically described what we are hearing because, otherwise, the public won't know what it sounds like and what happened on that day in 2018.
FISCHER: After that shooting, it felt like there was a chilling effect in terms of all temples around the country. You are seeing barriers being put up in front of them to protect various temples from things like this. Did they talk about that at all in trial, what this particular shooting meant for the entire Jewish community in America?
FREEMAN: You know, we haven't got into that specifically yet, but I will say that you could see the impact just in the process of going to court. The families and a lot of the members of the Jewish community in general in Pittsburgh have been coming to court every single day. They have been coming on a bus. A lot of them get together and meet up and drive through the federal courthouse. They are given a police escort. I mean, there is a lot of intentionality with protecting this community. I think you see it in that regard.
CAMEROTA: And you know one other thing about that, Sara. I did speak to, at the time when this was happening, one of the security firms who was providing security for lots of synagogues around the country. I believe that Rabbi Myers at the Tree of Life had recently had assimilation.
I think that he had gone through a security exercise and that's part of what helped him and others survived.
FREEMAN: There were few testimonies that we heard that specifically said that. One person wondered, is this a drill maybe because we recently had drills like this? And then someone said -- there are some moment of levity. Someone said, no one would have a drill like this on my Chabot morning.
CAMEROTA: Yes, understood. That's why they did have a drill. Now, I remember that. Yes. Thank you very much for all of your reporting.
FREEMAN: Of course.
CAMEROTA: Okay, meanwhile, this story, the National Eating Disorders Association shut down their main phoneline and instead started using a Chatbot to give advice to people in distress. You can imagine. Things went wrong. Sara is going to tell us about this right after this.
CAMEROTA: The National Eating Disorder Association says it shut down its A.I.-powered Chatbot that was called "Tessa" after the bot started offering harmful advice to callers.
Sara, this is a disturbing story. First of all, did they know they were talking to a bot? What kind of advice was this bot giving out?
FISCHER: It wasn't great advice, Alisyn. We had people on Twitter explaining some of the things that they were being told. One of the things that we had heard from somebody who is a weight lost consultant said that "Tessa" recommended that I weigh and measure myself weekly. She recommended that I purchase and use skin caliper to determine body composition. She gave suggestions on where to purchase those calipers. She also --
CAMEROTA: The things that like pinch your skin and it tells you what your body fat is?
FISCHER: Measure your visceral fat. Exactly right. And she also said that "Tessa" recommended that she should lose 1 to 2 pounds per week, and that she counts her calories and work out so that she could have a 500 to 1,000 calorie deficit per day.
CAMEROTA: That's the worst thing to advise somebody going through an eating disorder.
FISCHER: Especially because (INAUDIBLE), right? A deficit of a thousand calories a day is just extraordinarily and not healthy. But the thing that stands out to me was the question that you first asked. Do people know that they're talking to a Chatbot? This has been a huge problem with A.I., especially since ChatGPT.
I would clarify that the National Association of Eating Disorders said that this is not a ChatGPT bot. They actually started rolling (INAUDIBLE) in February 2022, so this was before the most recent iteration.
But one of the challenges is a lot of times, we're interacting with these chat services and we assume that they're people. Sometimes, you might really know that it is a bot because the language doesn't seem right. But for the most sophisticated ones, it is confusing.
For instances like this where you need to get critical information, emergency information, health information, having an understanding about what and who it is that you're talking to, I think, makes a big difference.
TREENE: Do you think, Sara, that they're going to do something about this at the federal level or Congress to make these disclosures more known in public?
FISCHER: Possibly. Right now, Congress is just trying to wrap their head around what to do with A.I. in general. We saw a few weeks ago the CEO of OpenAI, Sam Altman, came to Congress. I actually thought it was a very productive hearing.
The challenge, Alayna, with a lot of these big tech laws coming through Congress is that Republicans and Democrats cannot get over the mutual understanding of censorship. In one sense, disclosure seems so nonchalant, right? What is the big deal? But on another, if you're forcing somebody to disclose an identity versus not, these are the types of things that become heavily politicized.
What I'm hopeful for, though, is that the market will hopefully try to figure out a solution for itself because consumers want the real stuff. They want good answers. We're not going to settle for having search engines or chatbots give us false information if we know it's false. This case, clearly, this weight loss consultant tweeted about it because she knew that this was not good information.
CAMEROTA: Can you, guys, believe that we might be talking to a chatbot and not know it? What does that even sound like?
FREEMAN: Here's my question. Because I actually (INAUDIBLE) especially since you just said that this has been out since 2022. I think we're talking to a lot more chatbots every single day and actually don't realize it. Right?
I mean, I'm thinking -- you were talking about this, any customer service thing probably are chatbots at this point, right?
FISCHER: A hundred percent. So, just to give you a sense, the call service industry is 25-billion-dollar industry. So, when you need to call your airline or your local store or grocery or anything to get customer service, you would, for a long time, be dispatched to somebody. Typically, it would be somebody overseas who would help you with your services.
A.I. can overnight display that industry, right? It can do it in a really cheap and efficient way. There are some benefits to consumers. A.I. can be really fast. In some cases, it might be able to pull up things like phone numbers more quickly for you than a potential human would.
But the huge challenge is that people don't always know when they're talking to these bots. They sometimes think that they're humans. And that becomes an issue when it's highly personal communications, things like your health.
I do want to read a statement from the National Association of Eating Disorders because they sort of explained how we got to this point, and I think that's relevant here.
So, one of the things that they have said was that it came to their attention last night that the version of this Tessa chatbot, the one that they started in February 2022, running what was a body positivity program, may have given information that was harmful and unrelated to the program. They say they're investigating this immediately and that they've taken down the program until further notice for a complete investigation.
But I also want to note just some backdrop here. There was also a report that they had been, you know, potentially letting go of some of the humans that were responding to a different program.
And so, it begs the question, is this something happening in businesses all around America, right, where we should have humans who are responding to people, especially again for things like health and emergency communications, but we're displacing them with chatbots because it's easier and it's cheaper?
SANDOVAL: Yeah. This is -- you talk about the future of the industry. I think what you said is so important. It probably -- the weight is on the industry versus Congress because if we learned anything, especially at the top of the show, is that usually the industry will evolve a lot faster than Congress.
Really, it is almost a test for A.I. in terms of how it can respond to these issues that you highlight, and one would say this is almost a failure of it.
FISCHER: Yes. You know what is really challenging about this? A.I. is a type of technology that needs to get smarter overtime with more inputs and more stress testing.
FREEMAN: Right. It needs more data.
FISCHER: Exactly. And so, one of the challenges here is that in order to make A.I. better and more effective, we actually need to put it out into the real world and let some bad things happen, which is awful, but that is how -- by the way, I just want to say, this is how technology has evolved over time, right?
It took decades. This is the example big tech always gives when they are in front of Congress. It took decades for us to put seatbelts into law for cars. It took decades for us to figure out on every single road where you put stoplights. I'm not saying this is the same thing --
CAMEROTA: Right, because seatbelts weren't going rogue. And seatbelts weren't like giving us bad advice and telling us to hurt ourselves.
TREENE: This is such a horrible example of it. I mean --
FISCHER: To your point, quickly, about going rogue, though, these answers sound authoritative when they are actually entirely and sometimes made up. That was not necessarily the issue with cars.
CAMEROTA: Yeah. Thank you, Sara. Really important and we do this all the time because everybody just needs to buckle up to run with your seatbelt metaphor because it is happening. It is happening around us and we are not even aware of it. Thank you for all of that.
Okay, also, protests across Florida over Governor Ron DeSantis's new immigration law. Polo has that story for us right after this very quick break.
CAMEROTA: A day without immigrants. That's what organizers are calling the protests in various parts of the country today, especially Florida. They are protesting a new immigration law signed by Governor Ron DeSantis that imposes penalties on employers who hire illegal migrants. Polo has more on this law. Polo, tell us about the protests and what the point is here.
SANDOVAL: So, with one month before this new law kicks in that was signed by Governor DeSantis back on May 10th, basically what we saw are these protesters in Florida and some other states that wanted to show the world what it will look like without immigrants.
That is what we saw not only on many of these protests but our colleagues in Florida today are reporting on some of these widespread closures. There were many businesses that were closing up shops to show solidarity.
Now, I want to break out exactly what this will do in the coming month once this actually kicks in. We actually have a breakdown. Not only does it supplement the governor's migrant relocation program but it will also require some hospitals to collect patient's immigration status. It also invalidates the out-of-state ID cards, driver licenses that have been issued to undocumented people.
But the top two are really the hot button issue which is requiring employers with 25 employees or more to check the immigration status of their new employees and those who did not comply this could face very hefty fines of about $1,000 a day per person.
Supporters of all of this, including, of course, Governor DeSantis are saying that this is -- quote -- "the strongest anti-illegal immigration law in the country." So, this is what we expect in the upcoming days and this is why we saw this massive show of support while, again, the governor standing by this as it kicks in about four weeks.
TREENE: I am so -- I mean -- and this is great reporting, especially as we are talking about 2024. DeSantis this week is campaigning in all of the early presidential states. Because it is Florida, I am so curious how this is going to play out.
We saw Governor DeSantis sending migrants to Martha's Vineyard. I know other governors have done that as well. But because Florida has a lot of Cuban immigrants, a lot of people from Venezuela, I'm so fascinated to see how this could affect politics.
I also think it is fascinating to see if what they are doing will have an impact and actually change some of these laws across the country and showing -- one of the biggest issues that I'm covering in Congress when it comes to the immigration debate is about visas and about -- it is not just migrants coming across the border, but how they are so necessary for a ton of jobs that people do not even realize that, you know, they are needed for.
And so, this is great reporting, but I'm really interested to see how this plays out particularly in Florida as you are saying.
SANDOVAL: And the backlog of the work authorization --
SANDOVAL: -- separation that we talk about right here now. The other question, too, how will this affect business? It is still too early to see exactly what -- all the closures that we saw today, what -- how that is going to affect the economy.
But also, when you think about just farmworkers in general, I was looking over some statistics from the Farmworkers Association of Florida saying that on average, they have about 500,000 farmworkers in Florida. The organization is expecting that about 300,000 of them are undocumented.
So, you could just imagine what that community is going to feel and why many of them have stepped forward saying they rather go elsewhere. There was one asylum seeker who I met here last year in New York after a hurricane devastated parts of Florida. He traveled down to Florida to help with the cleanup efforts. Now, he plans to come right back because of this new law.
So, in the world of business and politics, we all know sometimes business really speaks louder.
So, it will be interesting to hear and to see what some of these rural farmers do because this has the potential to affect their workforce. In terms of the businesses, these are not just farmworkers, these are also consumers, right? These are people who eat at restaurants. These are people who are purchase merchandize.
CAMEROTA: We only have 10 seconds left, but also, the idea that you are going to have immigration status checked when you're going to a hospital or an emergency room, that is really going to be a challenge because, obviously, hospitals don't -- aren't supposed to turn anybody away.
Polo, thank you very much for bringing this reporting to us and alerting us to this.
SANDOVAL: Thanks, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: All right, tomorrow on "CNN This Morning," Bill Weir on a dramatic decision in Arizona to limit new construction because there is not enough groundwater to go around.
Our thanks to all our fabulous reporters tonight. Thank you for watching. Our coverage continues now.