Return to Transcripts main page

Connect the World

Cat 4 Beryl Churns toward Jamaica; Biden under Pressure to Exit Race; Global Weather Brings High Heat, Powerful Storms; U.S. President Joe Biden Speaks on Climate Change; British Voters Poised to End 14 Years of Conservative Rule; Never Trumpers Disillusioned by Biden Debate Performance. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired July 03, 2024 - 10:00   ET




UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): Live from CNN Abu Dhabi, this is CONNECT THE WORLD with Becky Anderson.

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST (voice-over): Welcome to our second hour of the show. I'm Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi, where the time is 6:00 in the


After causing heavy destruction in the Windward Islands, Hurricane Beryl heads toward Jamaica, where residents are preparing for what could be a

massive storm surge.

The U.S. president under pressure as Joe Biden meets with nervous Democrats who are concerned for his campaign in the upcoming election. Calls for him

to pull out of the race are growing louder.

And across the Atlantic, candidates are making their final pitch in the United Kingdom. British prime minister Rishi Sunak and the opposition

Labour Party leader, Keir Starmer, are out and about, using their last day before a crucial election to win over British voters.


ANDERSON: Let's begin with Jamaica, which is bracing for a category 4 hurricane named Beryl. In the next few hours, the latest forecast shows the

island may be spared a direct hit but the impact could still be devastating.

The storm has sustained winds of more than 200 kilometers an hour and could bring a surge as high as nine feet or 2-3 meters. A curfew is now in place

as they await the hurricane. CNN is on the ground in Jamaica's capital, Kingston. Rafael Romo joins us now live -- Rafael.

RAFAEL ROMO, CNN SR. LATIN AFFAIRS EDITOR: Yes, Becky, that's indeed the open question right now, whether Hurricane Beryl is going to make landfall


In any case, whether it does or not, it's going to be close enough to the island of 3 million people to cause torrential rains that can in turn

create landslides in the higher elevations and also very strong winds that can be very destructive here.

So keeping a very close eye at what's going to happen in the next few hours. And it seems hard to believe but there's only been two hurricanes

that have made landfall in the last 40 years on this island.

But the reality is that they have felt the impacts of many others. And people here are wondering what's going to happen in the next few hours.

They have seen what happened in Barbados, what happened in Grenada. They have seen the trail of destruction caused by Hurricane Beryl in the

southern Caribbean.

And they fear that the same thing may happen to them. That's why the prime minister, in a televised address last night, told people that those who

can, move away from the low-lying areas, go to safer ground to get away from any potential flooding, landslides and other threats posed by the


Let's take a listen to what the prime minister said.

And we don't have the prime minister. But he was saying essentially that people really need to heed the warnings from authorities, go to a place

where they can be safe. And Becky, let tell you something else. Hurricane Beryl is the earliest hurricane category 5 hurricane recorded on the

Atlantic. So that tells you a lot about what's going on here.

The other thing, too, is that what people here on the ground are telling us is that, yes, they're used to hurricanes in later months, in August and

September, even in October. But this early in the season, that's caught many people by surprise. They were not ready for it.

We've also seen many people flocking to the stores, the supermarkets, getting those basic necessities, food, water and other needs, just to

prepare for this hurricane.

There's one piece of good news all of this, Becky, and that's the fact that the hurricane is moving at a faster pace as hurricanes go, 20 miles an

hour, which means that, yes, it's going to have an impact.

But it's not going to be like Hurricane Katrina, for example, that was a hurricane that was mainly stationary and we all know what happened in

Louisiana all those years ago. So there's a little bit of good news right there, Becky.


ANDERSON: All right, Rafael. Thank you for that.

My next guest is Jamaican senator Matthew Samuda. He's in charge of overseeing water, environment and climate change issues on the island,

joining us now live.

Senator, it's good to have you. Just had our report from Rafael there, with closing that out with a little bit of good news, the speed of this storm

and the fact that Jamaica, as we can tell by the weather charts at the moment, is not necessarily right in the eye.

But still, tell us, how are people preparing, sir?

MATTHEW SAMUDA, JAMAICAN SENATOR: Thank you for having us, Becky. So Jamaica is preparing primarily at the wholesale level. Citizens have bought

air supermarketing goods. We've been sure that they have adequate access to medication. We've ensured that hardware stores certainly we're hoping to


And citizens, I believe, have taken the message on board from the prime minister because, as early as Friday of last week, the prime minister would

have initiated emergency protocols in all state agencies. So we've been communicating with citizens since Friday, so they're very clear on the risk

that we face.

We've said it was time to prepare, not to panic. And I think, generally, Jamaicans are taking that message.

ANDERSON: What kind of damage can be expected with a storm surge of some 2-3 meters, sir?

SAMUDA: Quite frankly, catastrophic. So 70 percent of Jamaicans live within five kilometers of the sea, in usually low-lying areas. So a storm

surge from a storm of this nature is not something that we look forward to.

When one adds the wind damage and potential rainfall for flooding that we're known for, it's quiet concerning. It's one of the reasons the

government spent the last 48 hours ensuring that all waterways were as clear as it could be, whether man-made or as an -- ensuring that all

critical infrastructure was secured.

Because we know that a storm surge of this nature with winds behind it, whether it makes landfall, is nothing for us to suffer.

ANDERSON: Given that your file is water, the environment and climate change, of course, what's being done as far as adaptation measures of being


What's being done, what's been built up over the past few years?

SAMUDA: So the hurricane Ivan in 2004, which was the last major weather impact, we've had obviously periodic storms in between, the government has

taken its disaster preparedness pretty seriously.

So currently we have 780 operational shelters ready for citizens to deal with the critical issues. But we have spent significant time ensuring that

we build our infrastructure.

Jamaica, as a part of its climate change management, was the first nation to launch what we call a systemic risk assessment, which was designed by

the University of Oxford.

What that did is we took thousands of points of infrastructure and an AI system, where we're able to calculate climate for our infrastructure. So

our investment program has been in line with climate risk. So the rules that we're doing moving further inlands, expansion endurance.

We are in the middle of about $800 million usd of expansion of our water systems over the next three years. We've done aboat $500 million over the

last six or seven years or so.

So we're working on our water systems, we're working on our interests, our hard infrastructure. We obviously embrace nature-based solutions. But we

are also looking at the resilience level at the municipalities. So there's a lot of work that's been done.

But it doesn't mean that we're not fragile. And even though we've improved significantly from a macroeconomic perspective, (INAUDIBLE) of this nature

can set us back to 10 years that we've invested into our macroeconomic stability.

ANDERSON: As you rightly pointed out, some 80 percent of the island lives within five kilometers of the coast. And that's a statistic that I'd seen

in the -- in the reports out of the World Bank and something that I was looking at actually back in December, when we were -- when Dubai was

hosting the big COP28 meeting.

What kind of support is needed in the future, given these stronger storms are expected to become more commonplace as the world continues to heat up?

And do you genuinely believe that the offers that we saw out of COP28 were moving toward the next climate meeting in December or November, December in


Is an island like yours being looked after by the rest of the world?


SAMUDA: We are a nation that believes that God helps those who help themselves, right?

So we've been getting our macroeconomic principles right. We've been engaging with multilaterals and make sure that we modernize our financial

architecture. We reduced our debt.

But what even within that context, our economic size is simply not in line with the challenges that we face. It's why we do participate in the

multilateral process, which is COP and, indeed, all climate change discussions because we know the risks that we face.

To be frank, Becky, the pledges made don't equal the issues that the developing world face. They simply don't equal the issues that Jamaica

faces. I mean, ultimately, our adaptation for water alone will be some $5 billion (ph) usd. Those sorts of pledges and access to that scale of

finance from a climate change perspective is simply not there.

So ultimately we know we have a challenging time ahead. It's why we continue to, under leadership of the prime minister, under bonus (ph) to

ensure that we focus on managing our fiscal affairs in a particular way so that we are able to extract the sort of foreign direct investment that

comes in in the form of PPPs.

The sort of donor conversations that says we will be responsible with funds that you give us because, ultimately, this scale of the problem is

enormous. And not process, is not matching the scale of the problem.

ANDERSON: I just want you, finally, just to take your professional sort of a hat off as it were, Senator. You're a Jamaican. Your family faces risks.

Your extended family, your friends, the islanders you know.

What's the atmosphere like today and going forward for a generation, who knows that they are fundamentally at risk from what is this climate crisis?

SAMUDA: So on a day, on a day like today, there's a great deal of anxiety because ultimately we know that weather conditions will deteriorate over

the next three to four hours. And we will experience hurricane conditions beyond, beyond midday Jamaican time.

So there is a fair bit of anxiety. What I think beyond that, a storm of this size and scale coming at this time of the year, it is driving it home

to Jamaicans both here and abroad -- we have a large diaspora -- that this issue is not going away, that it's going to continue to leave us in a

precarious position and that we have a lot of work to do.

So I don't believe that there's anyone in Jamaica who denies the impacts of climate change.

The question for us, as Jamaicans, as citizens of a small island, developing state just like our brothers and sisters in the eastern

Caribbean, is, really, how are we going to get the developed world to meet their mitigation targets?

How are we going to get them to meet their financing targets and commitments for adaptation?

Because ultimately it's not a problem of our own making.

This is a problem that the developed world would have created but we are the ones on the front line of the crisis with the least ability to adapt

and the least ability to ensure that we maintain our way of life and we maintain our country and give our citizens the chance to enjoy developed

status as well.

Because ultimately the fragility brought about by climate change is real. It's why Jamaica has taken steps to ensure that it will start its own

climate attributions so that we can state clearly and scientifically what the negative economic impact has been for our problem, not of our making.

We honor our mitigation obligations, even though we're energy -- a low energy user. But we are calling on the developed world to honor their

promises because, when you look at what's before us, Hurricane Beryl a few degrees to the north, is a vast disaster, a vastly different disaster than

we're currently facing.

ANDERSON: Senator, we wish you the best. We wish the people of Jamaica the best. It's a wonderful place and let's just hope that you can get through

what is a very visible, very visible and frightening example of where we are at as far as this climate crisis is concerned. So thank you very much

indeed for joining us today.



ANDERSON: Well, ahead on CONNECT THE WORLD, Joe Biden facing increasing pressure to exit the U.S. presidential race. What a Democratic lawmaker is

saying about the president's future that has not been said in public before.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is not about the Democrat or the Republican Party.

They've both put up candidates that are not electable for very different reasons.

ANDERSON (voice-over): Democrats and now Never Trump Republicans say the last debate left them disillusioned. You'll here from some of them later

this hour.






ANDERSON: Well, the White House is digging in while Democrats are starting to break ranks, calling for President Joe Biden to exit the presidential

race after what many consider a disastrous debate performance last week. For now, at least, the message though from his team seems to be keep on


Sources tell CNN, the White House chief of staff will push that narrative in an all staff call next hour. And the president himself will host

Democratic governors at the White House this evening ahead of a sit-down TV interview later this week.

Well, all of this happening as, for the first time, a Democratic lawmaker is publicly calling on Mr. Biden to exit the race. MJ Lee has more on the

debate fallout and what critics say is a lackluster response from the White House.


MJ LEE, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): the Democratic firewall around President Joe Biden is beginning to fracture.

Texas Congressman Lloyd Doggett becoming the first Democratic lawmaker to publicly called on Biden to withdraw from the 2024 election, following last

week's poor debate performance.

The congressman saying in a statement, "President Biden's first commitment has always been to our country, not himself. I'm hopeful that he will make

the painful and difficult decision to withdraw."

The White House facing a barrage of questions about the president's debate performance.

KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: It was a bad night. He was not taking any cold medications. That is what I can speak to. I've

asked his doctor and that's what he stated to us.

LEE: And urged to release more medical records.

JEAN-PIERRE: We have released thorough reports from his medical team every year since he's been in office.

LEE: The White House press secretary digging in and saying Biden's accomplishments speak volumes.

JEAN-PIERRE: With age comes wisdom and experience.

LEE: Other Democrats beginning to publicly express concern that the president could hurt candidates in down-ballot races.

REP. MIKE QUIGLEY (D-IL), CO-CHAIR, CONGRESSIONAL UKRAINE CAUCUS: It's his decision. I just want him to appreciate at this time just how much it

impacts, not just his race but all the other races coming in November.

LEE: As Republicans are ready to pounce on Biden's debate showing to attack their Democratic opponents.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have a lot of confidence in his leadership.

LEE: Even the president's most staunch defenders, giving credence to the flurry of questions about his health.

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA), FORMER U.S. HOUSE SPEAKER: He has the vision, he has knowledge. He has judgment. He has a strategic thinking and the rest.

He has a bad night. Now again, I think it's a legitimate question to say, is this an episode or is this a condition?

LEE: New CNN polling showing no immediate damage from Biden's halting debate performance.

The president trailing Donald Trump by six points, 43 percent to 49 percent, the same numbers as April but Biden's approval ratings declining

to a new low with just 36 percent of Americans approving of his job performance.

And in a hypothetical matchup, Vice President Kamala Harris is polling better against the former president. She is within striking distance, 45

percent to 47 percent.

REP. JAMES CLYBURN (D-SC): I will support her if he were to step aside.

LEE: Some prominent Biden supporters also expressing support for Harris but insisting for now that the president remain at the top of the ticket.

CLYBURN: I want this ticket to continue to be Biden-Harris. And then we'll see what happens after the next election.

LEE: And President Biden on Tuesday night offering a new explanation for his poor debate performance when he spoke at a fundraiser in Virginia.

He apologized for the poor performance last Thursday night and said this is not an excuse but an explanation and blamed the extensive foreign travel

that he did in the lead up to that CNN debate. He said that it wasn't a smart idea, that he didn't listen to his staff and that he almost fell

asleep on stage.


That, of course, is an explanation that is not likely to reassure a lot of Democrats that are very concerned right now -- MJ Lee, CNN, at the White



ANDERSON: Chief U.S. national affairs correspondent Jeff Zeleny joining me now.

As MJ Lee rightly pointed out, the explanations that we're hearing at the moment are not looking like they are reassuring many lawmakers.

Who knows about the voters at this point?

The polling really isn't clear but I want you to take a listen to what congressman Lloyd Doggett of Texas, the first elected Democrat in Congress

to call for President Biden to step down, what he told CNN earlier today after his comments from yesterday. Have a listen.


REP. LLOYD DOGGETT (D-TX): My concern is that a criminal and his gang are about to take over our government. And we may never get it back. What we

need is the enthusiasm and the excitement that has been missing there, that President Biden has lagged for a year behind Trump.

The debate, instead of adding momentum, added disappointment and disillusionment. The idea of having a new person who might excite all those

double haters, that there's another alternative out there and bring us together, would give us a much better chance in the fall than we have right



ANDERSON: Jeff, Tom (sic) Doggett there.

And does he reflect a widening worry out there, a significantly widening worry out there?

What's your take at this point?

You've got your real ear to the ground on this.

What's going on behind the scenes and what should we take about whether or not we should expect to begin to see an off-ramp being provided for

President Biden?

JEFF ZELENY, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, I think you're seeing that. Congressman Lloyd Doggett there has served about

three decades in Congress. He's not afraid to speak what he sees as the truth of the party. And he's really voicing what we've been hearing for

days and, in fact, longer than that.

Well before the debate, that what is wrong with this campaign inside the Democratic Party, why is President Biden sort of losing a bit to former

president Donald Trump, at least in the polls?

So Congressman Doggett, there, he represents LBJ's old district, Lyndon Baines Johnson, of course, Austin, Texas. And LBJ stepped aside. So that is

sort of the historic sweep of this.

But today, the bottom line is, patience is wearing thin among many Democratic leaders there.

You heard former speaker, Nancy Pelosi, asking bluntly, "Is this an episode or a condition?"

And these are people who want the best for the party and for President Biden. So never mind the critics who don't much like the Democratic

administration. These are people trying to show President Biden the way.

The question is, will he sort of follow their lead?

If there is enough evidence that he's caused enough damage to the Democratic ticket overall, that they could lose the House and lose the

Senate, that, his allies believe, is something that will be pretty tough medicine that he could accept.

But again, the ball is in his court. He has not made that decision yet. But a couple of interesting things we're watching today. He's having lunch with

Vice President Kamala Harris in just a couple hours' time at the White House.

And then this evening, most Democratic governors are flying to Washington to also have a meeting with him. So, Becky, it seems like it's heading in a

direction. But again he has to make the decision.


And as we understand it, he's got big interview with a U.S. network, ABC, on Friday. Look, just finally, you're so good at this, just remind us, you

know, what the -- what the windows are here. The election of course, is in November but the convention is coming up, with just weeks away from that.

Should President Biden stand aside?

What would the process be at this point for the Democrats?

ZELENY: Look, that's why time is of the essence. You're right. Election Day is four months from Friday. But there are not four months here. We are

talking just a matter of a couple of weeks for Democrats to decide who they'll rally behind.

And that benefits Vice President Harris tremendously. The reality is her name is on the door of the campaign. It's the Biden-Harris campaign. So she

owns the infrastructure, the campaign war chest. It is -- there may be some people who say she is too big of a risk.

But the question is, is that a bigger risk than leaving President Biden at hand here?


So in the next week or so is about the timeframe here. And a lot of discussion is leading to, yes, Vice President Harris at the top of the

ticket; perhaps there would be a wider context for who her running mate would be and could that be a way to have all of these governors and

senators to have a bit of a bake-off, if you will, for her running mate.

But not a lot of time here. That's why the next few days are so important. But Becky, I would tell you that lunch today between Biden and Harris,

history may show that this was a most important gathering of all here in this presidential campaign.

A good reminder, we don't always necessarily know where things are going. And, boy, a week ago, no one would have predicted this.

ANDERSON: He admitted at a fundraiser last night that he nearly fell asleep on stage during that debate. Let's hope he doesn't nearly fall

asleep during that lunch today because it's clearly going to be an incredibly important one. Good to have you, Jeff, it's always a pleasure,

mate. Thank you.

ZELENY: My pleasure.

ANDERSON: President Biden's post-debate crisis is now evolving into a real threat to his reelection bid.

As CNN senior political reporter, Stephen Collinson writes in his latest piece, quote, "Every effort the president and his White House and campaign

teams make to fix the problem ends up exacerbating it."

For more analysis on the fallout from the debate, you can read Stephen's excellent piece online at

Well, still ahead, from wildfires in Greece to hurricanes in the Caribbean, we're going to take a look at extreme weather around the globe and the

impact of climate change.

And if the opinion polls are right, British voters are poised to evict their Conservative-led government after 14 years.

What will that mean for Britain's place in the world?

Our U.K. election preview is just ahead.




ANDERSON: Welcome back.

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD with me, Becky Anderson; time here is 34 minutes past 6:00.

Weather around the world, breaking records and causing concern.


Greece preparing for searing heat and a dangerous wildfire season. Officials are bringing in an additional 240 firefighters to help its

firefighting forces.

In India, the meteorological department says that the country experienced its highest number of heat wave days in 40 years. The northwest region also

recorded its warmest June since 1901.

Heat also a problem across the United States. Millions are under heat alerts from Oregon, California and across the Southeast. And, of course,

right now, Hurricane Beryl is leaving a trail of destructure and across southeast Caribbean islands. Its path has been fueled by abnormally warm


The storm could generate a life-threatening storm surge for portions of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands today.

Joining us now is CNN's chief climate correspondent Bill Weir.

It's, good to have you. Let us start with the hurricane.

How does what we are seeing with this very powerful storm, an historic storm so early in the storm season, what does it tell us about climate

change's impact?

BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's having a real alarming effect for folks down in that part of the world, who are used to

seeing storms like this, they brace for them in August or September after a summer of heat has built up in the Atlantic or the Gulf of Mexico.

To get this one, this early at the very beginning of July, started in June, it makes you wonder, what will storms look like for the rest of the summer?

And we were speaking in the climate team with a professor at Rutgers University, Kevin Ryan (ph). He's from Jamaica. His grandfather was killed

in the last hurricane, hit Jamaica back in '88. His son is on the island.

And he was talking about something like this can upend an entire country like Jamaica, Caribbean nations who are already struggling to adapt to the

changes when the sun is shining.

And imagine the fear of a second hurricane because it's this early in the season, it's this rapid intensification where that warm water just is

steroids for these storms. It soaks up all that energy, as there's underwater heat waves that are happening, as well, as those that we

experience on land.

But turning that energy into just bigger, wetter, more intense storms. And unfortunately this, this is sort of the world we live in now. And this is

not a one-off. And we have the mentality so long in, whoo, we escaped that one; we will be OK for the next 40 years.

Unfortunately, the science says this is, this is something to get ready for.

ANDERSON: Yes. Hurricanes, of course, generally need the sea surface to be pretty hot in order to have a chance of developing.

As we see the world heating up from the U.S. to Europe to Asia, this is all connected, isn't it?

Just explain if you will.

WEIR: Absolutely. I mean, it's a science experiment you could duplicate in a sixth grade classroom by putting carbon dioxide into a jar and shooting

sunlight into it. You can see that temperature in that jar was much hotter than it would be if there's just oxygen in the jar.

Those heat-trapping gases, methane -- we've got about 1.5 billion tons extra more than the Earth can naturally absorb through natural processes.

So that is what has created this crisis, 150 years of human progress, which built the modern world, expanded lifespans. But unfortunately it's coming

back to bite us. The hidden cost of this right now.

So yes, depending on the region, hot regions are getting hotter, dries are getting drier. But there's this water whiplash where atmospheric rivers are

forming as the jet stream gets wobbly. It's -- we're in uncharted territory here and you've talked to scientists who say it's happening so much faster

than they ever imagined.

ANDERSON: Bill, I know that you've been looking with the team into what's at stake for climate issues in the upcoming U.S. elections. Just walk us

through what you've what you've found.

WEIR: We've been talking to both former Trump officials and those elected -- Al Gore and Gavin Newsom in California, sort of Democratic climate


And that to say, well, what if he wins, what could happen?

This is the most stark choice on any policy really in this election. We've got Joe Biden, who has got the most ambitious sort of all-of-government

approach to the crisis. And Republicans actively trying to undermine this and go in the other direction and cling to fossil fuels as long as


We actually got the strongest words I think I've ever heard from an American president yesterday, as he announced new efforts to create federal

laws to protect workers from heat -- mandatory shade or water breaks when a temperature gets too high. And he had this to say at one point.


BIDEN: I quite frankly think it's not only outrageous, it's really stupid.


Everyone who willfully denies the impacts of climate change is condemning the American people to a dangerous future. And either he is really, really

dumb or has some other motive.

How can we deny there's climate change, for God's sake?


WEIR: There is a group of Republicans who put together what's called Project 2025, which is their blueprint, their game plan for if Trump wins;

the lessons they learned the first time around when they weren't as adept at getting regulations changed or executive orders through.

And their game plan is to absolutely give oil and gas companies everything they could possibly want and gut as much of the Biden-era regulations as

they can. A lot of the Inflation Reduction Act money is going into Republican states. Over 75 percent. And some of those projects are now --

have broken ground.

There was a Republican MAGA Trump supporter in southeast Georgia recently, singing the praises of electric vehicles, which may have something to do

with the fact that the biggest battery plants in North America is being built in his district.

So there's hope among Democrats that a lot of that effort has enough traction that it'll be hard to unwind.

But people like John Kerry point out it sends a horrible message to the rest of the world, that the second largest polluter is pulling out and

maybe tryiing to remove the -- Trump has said they might even remove themselves from the entire framework of the Paris accords, which makes it

much harder for another president to get back in.

So there's so much at stake right now. And the political process is in such turmoil those sort of environmental minded voters are really worried these


ANDERSON: Yes. It's very good to have you as ever, Bill, we're on the story for you. Mate, thank you.

WEIR: Thanks.

ANDERSON: Well, coming up, former Republican voters who vowed to never back Donald Trump are feeling a little less certain after President Biden's

debate performance last week. We are going to hear from some of them just ahead.




ANDERSON: Britain's momentous general election now just one day away and voters are expected to send the Conservative Party packing after 14 years

in power. If the opinion polls are correct, this man is set to be Britain's next prime minister.

The Labour Party leader, Keir Starmer, is taking nothing for granted. He's been telling a campaign event while -- why he thinks Thursday's vote is not

a foregone conclusion.


KEIR STARMER, U.K. LABOUR LEADER: Because there are a lot of undecided voters still, lots of constituencies that will come down to a few hundred

votes that make the difference.

And people need convincing about the change that we need. They need convincing that change is possible, that they can vote for change.


ANDERSON: Well, prime minister Rishi Sunak, meanwhile, is getting some last-ditch support from Boris Johnson.


The former British prime minister made a surprise appearance at a Tuesday night rally. Have a listen to this.


BORIS JOHNSON, FORMER U.K. PRIME MINISTER: If you are slightly, slightly surprised to see me, it goes like present. I will only absolutely clear

that I was glad when Rishi asked me to help, I called so I couldn't say no.

And I'm here for one reason and one reason only, which is the same reason as all of you, all of us are here. We're here because we love our country.

And whatever our differences, whatever our differences, they are utterly trivial by comparison with the disaster we may face if these so-called

opinion polls are right.


ANDERSON: Well, make of that what you will. CNN's Nic Robertson back with us from London for more on what is this U.K. election.

And Nic, I want to take a look for the moment at some of the headlines from leading U.K. broadsheets.

This isn't a broadsheet; this is "The Economist," but this is an important one.

"Keir Starmer should be Britain's next prime minister."

The "FT," "Britain needs a fresh start."

The "Sunday Times," "The Tories have forfeited the right to govern over to Labour."

Nic, these are or have been in the recent past conservative leaning and I suggest conservative with a small c.

But this type of editorial that we've seen this year after 40 (ph) or this one after 14 in years of a conservative government, is -- it is a big

indicator, is it not, that the Tories have lost the right to govern at this point?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: It certainly looks that way, when you have these big, influential, intellectual publications putting out

this view, you could argue that they're sort of getting a little, there, a little bit behind the public, that over the past couple of years has been

putting more and more support behind Labour.

And the Conservatives have been slipping and slipping in the polls. But you sort of -- there's an inevitability about what you see in the polls.

But the newspapers do speak for themselves. And this clearly is eff you (ph). And there are other papers; I think the -- some of the tabloids now

are coming out. "The Mirror" is already out in support for -- of Keir Starmer and the Labour Party.

So you're beginning to see more and more of this. And this is what the newspapers do in the U.K. and other countries around the world ahead of

elections. They come out and side for one or another.

But it's very clear when, when people wake up tomorrow morning, Thursday morning here, and they had the opportunity to go to the polls, they'll be

reminded in whatever paper they're reading, if they're reading a paper, which way the paper thinks that they should vote.

And that has an impact. Remember, the politicians -- and we just heard it from Keir Starmer there -- are out after the last few hundred votes, even

if he has a massive margin in the polls and even if that predicts a landslide scale victory. It's not there until it's there. He has not taken

it for granted.

So of course, the papers support, that's big, that's good. That's good for him.

ANDERSON: Well, what this means for the U.K, its economy, its foreign policy, its position, its place in the world will be up for discussion over

the next 24 hours and then onwards. Be sure to watch CNN's special coverage of the U.K. elections on July 4th.

The coverage itself starts just before 10:00 pm in London. That is when we will see the first results. We are back here from Abu Dhabi today after a

quick break. Stay with us.





ANDERSON: Well, if you've been watching ours and reading your social media, you'll know that the Democrats are in a fizz in the States.

It's not just the Democrats in the U.S. They were criticizing their candidate's performance at the CNN presidential debate. Some anti-Trump,

former and current Republicans who were ready to embrace President Joe Biden in November are frankly also feeling disillusioned with his showing.

CNN's Elle Reeve with this report.


ELLE REEVE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This happy bar party is full of people who usually feel pretty bleak.

PAUL IVANCIE, FORMER REPUBLICAN: This country needs to wake up. There's a dangerous thing happening, it's called complacency.

REEVE (voice-over): They're fans of the Bulwark, a Never Trump media organization. Many are ex-Republicans who reject Donald Trump, a group that

can feel so tiny that some got on airplanes to meet one another. The event was festive just a few days before the presidential debate.

BECKY HOFER, BULWARK FAN: It's hard for me to wake up every morning and talk to my neighbors and know that they're supporting somebody that doesn't

match any of their values.

REEVE (voice-over): Becky is a former Republican who flew in from South Dakota with her sister-in-law.

HOFER: We're in a very red state and I'm a very not red person and it's tough to find a community there. We're married to Republican men.

REEVE: Is your husband pro-Trump?

HOFER: I think he's going to vote for Trump. I hope he doesn't vote for Trump but it's an interesting house to live in.

REEVE (voice-over): We wanted to talk to these people because they represent an important part of President Biden's coalition. But after his

struggle in the debate, we had to go back to them to see what had changed.

Hofer was shocked and angry.

HOFER: It was terrible. I'm completely disillusioned. I, at this -- they're both a joke. It felt like elder abuse. So yes, I think he needs to

be replaced. If for anything, just out of respect for his humanity.

REEVE (voice-over): Robin Hawkland had flown from Salt Lake City to be among Never Trumpers before the debate.

ROBIN HAWKLAND, BULWARK FAN: I fled the district in North Georgia with Marjorie Taylor Greene. She was pretty abusive to people wearing masks

during COVID and I was a little traumatized by that.

REEVE: And how would you describe your politics?

HAWKLAND: My politics were center left. My husband was always Republican and we got along fine for years and then it seems everything is kind of

broken. And we both now are registered Democrats in Utah, which is rare.

REEVE: Are you worried about what might happen after the election?

HAWKLAND: Yes, very worried, very worried. I have three daughters. They all live in red states and they're in reproductive age, which is in their

20s and I really worry about their options.

REEVE (voice-over): When we spoke to Hawkland afterward, she said she'd barely been able to sit through the debate.

HAWKLAND: Initial reaction was shock and then just sadness and then I think I moved into anger.

REEVE: Do you think Joe Biden should be replaced?

HAWKLAND: It hurts me to say that but yes. I don't think he's electable. I don't know how you dig out of this hole. He could do more events where he,

you know, looks better. He's looked better since then and they can time it right. But everyone knows deep in their existence what they saw may happen


REEVE (voice-over): The pre-debate party in Denver was for a live podcast taping from the Bulwark, which was created by former Republican operatives.

At the after party, people told us this was one of the few places where they could meet in real life, people who didn't make them feel crazy.

DAN MAGILL, NEVER TRUMP REPUBLICAN: I'm a relatively conservative Republican. It's almost, rather than being Republican, Democrat, it's

become more autocracy versus democracy.

Even though I would probably economically agree with more of the policies that a Trump administration would put in place versus a Biden

administration, I can't support someone like Trump.

HAWKLAND: You feel safe here and you feel like you can speak your mind and people may disagree but you can talk about it in a rational way.


REEVE (voice-over): But after the debate, Hawkland felt more despair.

HAWKLAND: You feel like you're being condescended to. To be talked to from the Democratic Party, kind of like, just get behind the candidate was very

frustrating and angering. This is not about the Democrat or the Republican Party. They both put up candidates that are not electable for very

different reasons.

Trump is a criminal and many other issues. Biden is just aging. And there is no reason that people should not be concerned with what they see.

HOFER: He's done a great job. He did a great job the last four years. Right now, if these are the two options that we have in November, I'll vote

for Joe Biden's head in a jar before I'll vote for Donald Trump.

I'm angry. And I mean, I'm angry to the point where if Joe Biden stays on the ticket and Donald Trump is still on the ticket, I'm fast tracking

moving to Costa Rica. I had it as a five-year plan to move to Costa Rica and I'm going to try and fast track it.

I do not want to be here before the Republicans. Trump's little trolls start, you know, reducing more or taking away more women's rights.

REEVE (voice-over): Elle Reeve, CNN, Denver.


ANDERSON: And with that, I'm going to wind up for the evening. Stay with CNN, though. "NEWSROOM" is up next.

From the team working with me here in Abu Dhabi and around the world, it is a very good evening from us to you.