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The Chris Wallace Show

President Biden And Former President Trump Prepare for Their First Presidential Debate Of 2024; Panelists Discuss Debate Strategies President Biden And Donald Trump Should Pursue; Memorable Moments From Past Presidential And Vice Presidential Debates Reviewed; U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy Promotes Surgeon General's Warnings For Social Media Platforms To Address Mental Health Crisis Among America's Children; Los Angeles Board Of Education Votes To Ban Cell Phones From Public Schools; Netflix To Open Show-Themed Events; Organized Theft Ring Targets Legos. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired June 22, 2024 - 10:00   ET




CHRIS WALLACE, CNN ANCHOR: Hello again and welcome. It's time to break down the big stories with some smart people. Today, we're asking just days before the first presidential debate, what are the landmines Joe Biden and thank you need to watch out for.

Then, put it away -- the cell phone ban affecting half a million kids which some say goes too far.

And brick by brick, police stopping a surprising theft ring that's all about a hot trend.

The panel is here and ready to go. So sit back, relax, and let's talk about it.

Up first, with five days to go before CNN's presidential debate, Joe Biden is spending this weekend prepping at Camp David while Donald Trump is campaigning. The showdown taking place three months earlier than any previous presidential debate could be a pivotal moment in this tight race. If you want some idea of what to expect, check out the last time they shared a debate stage.


WALLACE: It started with a friendly greeting.


WALLACE: Quickly devolving into personal insults.

DONALD TRUMP, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: It is nothing smart about you, Joe.

And constant interruptions.

TRUMP: Can I be honest? It's a very important --

BIDEN: Try to be honest.

TRUMP: He stood up, he stood up.

WALLACE: The answer to the question is no.

TRUMP: Ukraine.

WALLACE: No, sir.

And since 2000, the acrimony between Biden and Trump has only deepened.

BIDEN: Now he's running again, and he's clearly unhinged.

WALLACE: Beyond normal policy differences, they're likely to battle over Trump's refusal to admit he lost.

TRUMP: The election was rigged and stolen.

WALLACE: The January 6th attack on the Capitol, and Trump and Hunter Biden's felony convictions.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The American people don't want to hear that. They want to hear about the issues.

WALLACE: But both men may want to remember they're better moments from 2020, like when Trump counterpunched Biden's statement on energy.

BIDEN: I have a transition from the oil industry, yes.

TRUMP: He is going to destroy the oil industry. Will you remember that, Texas?

WALLACE: Or when Biden ignored Trump's hectoring and spoke directly to voters.

BIDEN: This is not about my family or his family. It's about your family. You, the American people. It's about you.


WALLACE (on camera): Here with me today, podcaster and author Kara Swisher, conservative pollster and "New York Times" opinion writer Kristen Soltis Anderson, Nia-Malika Henderson, politics and policy columnist at "Bloomberg," and Eliana Johnson, editor-in-chief of "The Washington Free Beacon". Welcome back, everyone.

Kristen, let's start with Trump. What are his dos and don'ts for this debate next Thursday both in terms of style and substance?

KRISTEN SOLTIS ANDERSON, FOUNDING PARTNER, ECHELON INSIGHTS: What he needs to do is have a very strong message about the economy and return to that topic time and time and time again. It is the issue on which he pulls the strongest. It is one of the top issues for swing voters. He also needs to talk about where he thinks he'd be strong, things

like immigration, crime. Those are also issues were voters tend to trust him more than Biden. Don't take the bait and get too pulled into the weeds on how you're going to have revenge and how you're going to use your next administration for this two-tiered justice system.

And also, don't forget to prepare on the abortion issue. A couple of weeks ago, you may recall that he had kind of no answer when asked what is your policy on contraception? He said, oh, we'll get back to you. That is not going to fly in a debate.

WALLACE: What does he do with questions about election denial, about whether or not he lost the 2020 election and whether Joe Biden is the legitimate president?

ANDERSON: Now, in a perfect world, I would say, say you accept the election results and move on. I know we don't live in that world, but I do think that he needs to remember that he is not at a rally. He is not speaking to his faithful. He is speaking to a much broader group for voters, the types of folks who are not as tuned in, who are checking in on this, if only for the entertainment value. They are not going to be interested in hearing Trump try to relitigate the election from four years.

WALLACE: Nia, what does Trump need to do in this debate? And what does he need to avoid?

NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON, OPINION COLUMNIST, "BLOOMBERG": Listen, I think he needs to avoid rambling and going on and on in this sort of tangential speech that we have seen from him in all of the speech.

WALLACE: In fairness, there are going to be sharp time limits, so he may be able to go on, but now --

HENDERSON: Yes, but that seems to be his preferred speaking style, sort of disjointed, all over the place. So I think he has to avoid that.

I also think he has to avoid going into the weeds about the prior election and all this sort of grievance stuff. That does well with the base. It doesn't do well with the broad audience that he's going to see.


He's got to accept this is going to be probably the most watched debate we've seen in many, many years. And he's got to know that he's got to expand his audience beyond just a true MAGA folks --

WALLACE: Look, he has been talking nonstop to his base about that he won the 2020 election. How does he handle that? I take Kristen's point. He doesn't want to relitigate it, but he can't run away from it either.

HENDERSON: Yes. Don't mention it. If he can avoid bringing it up, he should, he should move on. He should, he should try to accept, to the extent that he can, say President Biden is the president. I want to replace him in November. Vote for me. Move on. The grievance around this is just not a good idea for him.

WALLACE: Eliana, there is zero chance that does that.

HENDERSON: I think that's right, there is zero chance.

ELIANA JOHNSON, EDITOR IN CHIEF, "THE WASHINGTON FREE BEACON": I was going to say I agree with Nia and Kristen's points on substance, but I think the bar is actually a little bit lower for Trump in that he needs to go out there and simply make himself an acceptable alternative to a president whose approval ratings are underwater. His land mines are at the stolen election and questions about January 6th about which he will almost certainly be asked. And he should have a go-to line that says, I've talked extensively about my issues with the election. I don't have anything more to say about that here, and pivot to the economy and immigration.

He can use -- Chris, you did it back in 2020. He can use those two minutes anyway he likes.

WALLACE: That's true.

Let's switch due to Biden, Kara. What are his dos and don't's for Thursday?

KARA SWISHER, PODCAST HOST, "PIVOT" AND "ON": Don't look old. Don't look old. Don't seem creaky. Just like Trump can't seem nuts, he can't seem creaky. And I think the "Dark Brandon," do a little "Dark Brandon", do as well as he did at the State of the Union, that kind of energy.

WALLACE: When you say "Dark Brandon", do you mean like when he baited the Republicans on Social Security?

SWISHER: Yes, when he baits them, or those answers you saw with him that keeps going through, talks about your family, this guy's nuts, that kind of thing. So he feels like he's in charge even if he's older.

WALLACE: And what does he do with his issues? I mean, he's -- the difference now is he's an incumbent, so he's got a record just like Trump had a record. And there are certainly vulnerabilities. I think the biggest probably are cost of living and immigration.

SWISHER: Right. So he's got to say, I'm here for your family. I hear you. I hear you, that kind of Ronald Reagan-esque kind of thing is better. I hear your concerns. I'm going to do something about them. We've been through a hard time. With immigration he has a harder time. But again, I hear you, I hear you. I think that's always a good thing.

ANDERSON: What "I hear you" is so effective for is that he can't go out there and be happy go lucky, everything is great. America, I know you think the economy is bad, but you're the ones who are wrong. He can't do that.

WALLACE: Would you say don't use the word "Bidenomics"?

ANDERSON: I would say don't use the word "Bidenomics". From the very first time he said that I thought you have just cut an ad for the RNC. Every time he tries to claim like everything is wonderful, it is dissonant. But he also can't go out and say everything is terrible. So I agree with Kara, the "I hear you", it's a very fine line to walk, but that's his only way to succeed on these economics.

HENDERSON: I also think he needs to start picking apart Trump's record as well, right? There is a sort of nostalgia around Trump's record for some people, particularly with the economy, particularly with immigration as well. He needs to have it evidence that on a lot of these issues, particular immigration, Trump wasn't so great. He promised to build a wall. He promised to really wrap this issue up and really solve immigration. He didn't do that in four years.

WALLACE: I want to double down on that point, because Biden wanted this June debate. He wanted an early debate. Prior to this, the earliest presidential face so off was between Ronald Reagan and independent John Anderson on September 21st, 1980. And folks, yes, I was there. Kristen, who does this early debate favor?

ANDERSON: I think it favors Biden because if he can show he's got all his marbles, it will put aside a lot of the concerns people have and it will set him up stronger. Trump, I actually think has mismanaged expectations and now he has a little bit more to lose.

SWISHER: Yes, absolutely. Because here's the thing. Trump, what you have to be reminded of is, oh him, he's crazy. That kind of thing. Oh, it's him again. And I think people were tired of that act toward the end of his -- which is why he lost. And I think if you keep reminding, sort of people don't really look at the rallies. They don't look at the kind of things. And they paid attention to the trial, but full-on Trump is like, oh, that guy, like, do I want that guy back?

WALLACE: Eliana, let me pick up on that, because there's a phrase that has become common in this election, "Trump amnesia," and that people, if you look at how they view Trump in a variety of areas in 2020 versus how they view him now, they are much more favorable. Is that part of what Bidens got to do, is remind people, remember what you thought of Trump four years ago?

JOHNSON: He absolutely needs to do that, and he needs to, what Kristen was saying, he needs to not appear dismissive of voters real concerns and say, these were your concerns during the era of Trump. These are your concerns during the era of Biden. I hear them. I understand them.


And I agree with what Kristen said in that the Trump campaign has set a very low bar for Biden to clear. They've said he is senile. Biden will clear that bar by simply standing upright --

WALLACE: He hopes he clears the bar.

JOHNSON: Yes, by standing up right for 90 minutes and not confusing, as he did in February, the name of the president of Egypt with the president of Mexico.

WALLACE: Nia, I have one other thought about this. I think one of the reasons Biden called for this early debate was particularly in the swing states, he's losing. And he needed to change the narrative. And one way or the other, for good or ill, this is going to change the narrative.

HENDERSON: I think that's right. And you saw Biden have a swing with certain voters after the State of the Union. He's hoping for a little bump now. You saw some of that in this recent FOX News poll where he's kind of closing the gap with some of these voters. So I think he's hoping for more of that.

WALLACE: We're not done debating the debate. Up next, learning from history, how Biden and Trump could benefit from watching the winning and losing moments from previous showdowns.

Then urgent warning, the push to stick a label on social media sparking a larger debate over parents' rights.

And later, dearest gentle reader, you'll soon have a shot to attend a real life "Bridgerton" ball. But is the penalty yea or nay on the idea.



WALLACE: A note to the Biden and Trump campaigns. If history shows us anything, it's that presidential debates are mostly remembered not for style or substance, but for those unexpected moments which can either boost or doom a candidate's chances.


WALLACE: Since the first televised presidential debate at 1960.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The candidates need no introduction.

WALLACE: We've witnessed decisive political showdowns full of pivotal moments and sometimes self-inflicted wounds, like Richard Nixon appearing sweaty and oddly passive again a more confident John F. Kennedy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Nixon, would you like to comment on that statement?


WALLACE: Or Ronald Reagan flipping his age issue against Walter Mondale with this classic line.

RONALD REAGAN, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: I am not going to exploit for political purposes my opponent's youth and inexperience.

(LAUGHTER) WALLACE: Despite all the preparation, debates sometimes bring out the less appealing sides of a candidate, like Michael Dukakis appearing emotionless in 1988.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor, if Kitty Dukakis were raped and murdered, would you favor and irrevocable death penalty for the killer?

MICHAEL DUKAKIS, FORMER DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: No, I don't, Bernard. And I think you know that I've opposed the death penalty during all of my life.

WALLACE: Or Al Gore in 2000 signing and exasperated in his debate with George W. Bush.

GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: I've had a record of appointing judges in the state of Texas. That's what a governor gets to do.


WALLACE: Kristan, with past as prologue, should Biden lean into his age issue? Should he be ready -- he's no Ronald Reagan, but should he be ready with some kind of prepared one liner when Trump goes after him on age or acuity or fitness for office?

ANDERSON: He needs to be ready to address it, but he should not lean into it. There was a time when experience may have gone in his favor. That was four years ago. That is not right now. Americans are not saying yes, you are over the age of 80 and that's wonderful. So he really needs to demonstrate that the age is nothing but a number rather for than lean into it as any kind of a selling point.

WALLACE: The people I've been talking to at the White House say the best way for Biden to handle the age issue is how he performs in the debate, to just show over the course of those 90 minutes that he's up to four more years. Kara, does Biden need to lean in especially if Trump goes after him in some way on this issue?

SWISHER: Well, he can push back at Trump, because Trump has had a number of mistakes in speaking. Just he seems more vibrant. Like I said, he seems like the guy --

WALLACE: He who?

SWISHER: Trump seems like the guy in the senior cafeteria who is yelling about who stole his pudding, but it seems vibrant at least. And that's, that's the problem, is that even though I think they'd probably have --

WALLACE: So is there anything Biden could do it? Or is it basically show us?

SWISHER: I think he can have maybe one line, but showing us rather than tell is critical here. Show versus tell is absolutely -- but he should have a line tucked away, some kind of little line that is funny. I'm sure he has lots of comedians at his disposal. Try to get one good line. JOHNSON: It would be great for Biden to lean into the age issue if he

were actually capable of doing it, but I don't think he's actually capable of carrying it off in the way that Ronald Reagan did. Of the two candidates on that stage, Trump is actually funny, capable of being funny. And Biden excelled in 2020, the memorable line of that debate was when he said, will you shut up, when he showed exasperation and was dismissive of Trump's constant interruptions and being annoying. And I think you got to put who you are.

WALLACE: Then there are the gaffes when, despite all the coaching from their teams, a candidate steps in it. Here's President Gerald Ford in a 1976 debate with Jimmy Carter.


GERALD FORD, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: There is no Soviet domination of eastern Europe, and there never will be under a Ford administration.



WALLACE: I've watched this and then the reaction from the questioners. There was a team of questioners, and Max Frankel of "The New York Times" looked like he had just said the sky is falling, just utter disbelief.

Nia, who do you think of these two, Biden and Trump -- we'll leave Gerry Ford out of it -- is more likely to have a bad moment?

HENDERSON: I think it's probably Trump because Trump doesn't really no policy. He doesn't really know substance. He has these sort of broad takes on the world, broad takes on the economy. But when it comes to sort of history and even in some ways his own past and what he did in his own the administration, he isn't well-versed in that. So I think it's much more likely that he'll do it. Listen, I think they're both gaffe prone, but I think the more costly gaffe will likely come from Trump.

WALLACE: Eliana, do you agree with that? I mean, both of these guys are fully capable of digging a hole for themselves. Who do you think is more likely to?

JOHNSON: I don't agree with that. I think Biden is more likely. And I assure you his team is the more nervous going into this debate of the two. He has been kept away. He's spending the weekend away. He had only a couple of public appearances this week. And it's what we've seen in his administration.

I also think the format is going to greatly help Trump unintentionally. In 2020, when the mics were not muted, when the other candidate was talking, Trump was interrupting constantly. It was distracting. He looked annoying and seemed like a bully. Now they will be muted, and I think that will accrue to Trump's benefit. I also think not having an audience will actually accrue to Trump's benefit in that he will not be playing to a crowd. WALLACE: So you're almost saying that all of these rules that have

been set up are going to save him from himself?

JOHNSON: I think -- I kind of do.

SWISHER: Interesting. Actually, I think he'll make a mistake. He can't help it. He was just in a room with a lot of CEOs, as you heard about, that he met a bunch of CEO who are somewhat positive to him. I've talked to a number of people there, and he blew it on every count with a lot of people because he couldn't -- he couldn't move quickly, especially on policy. When they were they were asking about policy, and they didn't want jokes.

WALLACE: I have one quick story to tell. when I did the debate between Clinton and Trump in 2016, they each got two minutes, and these were all policy questions. And you all know that if you have two minutes that's yours exclusively, you use every bit of it and probably go over a little bit. Trump would often be finished talking about an issue of substance in a minute 20, a minute 30. He couldn't fill up a minute 30 worth of time on the substance.

SWISHER: And what was interesting, a lot of them were surprised by the cognitive issues, like that he would go from one thing to the next. So tangential stuff will be a problem for him.

WALLACE: And then there are the iconic moments, prepared or spontaneous, when one candidate crushes the other. My favorite was the vice presidential debate in 1988 between Senators Dan Quayle and Lloyd Bentsen.


DAN QUAYLE, FORMER U.S. VICE PRESIDENT: I have as much experience in the Congress as Jack Kennedy did when he sought the presidency.

LLOYD BENTSEN, FORMER U.S. SENATOR: Senator, I served with Jack Kennedy. I knew Jack Kennedy. Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy.



WALLACE: And the hat was a guttural roar like I've never heard before.

Kristen, who do you think is more likely, whether it's -- and that, I have a feeling, was canned and prepared because Quayle had this ridiculous habit of comparing self to Jack Kennedy. Who do you think is more likely to have a winning moment?

ANDERSON: So I think Biden's fate is entirely in his own hands. I don't think that there's anything that Trump can do to be the kill shot here. But that means that for Biden, because these expectations are so low, if he does something, like you may recall in the State of the Union a few years ago, he gets into it with Marjorie Taylor Greene. And that becomes the clip that everyone remembers. I think if Biden exceeds that very low bar, he has the most opportunity for a, quote-unquote, winning moment purely in part because of those expectations.

WALLACE: Nia, I want to pick up on that, because a lot of people are going to watch the debate, millions. But a lot of people won't, or won't sort of focus on that, and will really review what happened in terms of the clips and what's out there the day after. Who is more likely to have at the winning clip?

HENDERSON: Listen, I think Biden, if he is spontaneous, right? I don't think he should have prepared lines as much as just off the cuff. That's what you saw in the State of the Union. I think he can be witty, he can be smart and fast on his feet, and I think that's what was so great about his State of the Union performance. And I think he can bring that here.

Again, he is smarter at policy, at doing the job of presidency -- of the presidency than Donald Trump is. I mean, that is just an objective fact.

WALLACE: The only thing I'd say back to that is, but Trump is a showman. Don't ever under underestimate him.

The debate is also on over what Team USA will be wearing at the Olympics. We'll dress down the fit about the outfits.


Plus, hold the phone. The school ban some parents say goes too far.


WALLACE: An urgent warning this week from the nation's top doctor about a threat to children's health.


The surgeon general, Dr. Vivek Murthy wrote an op-ed article, "The mental health crisis among young people is an emergency," and "It is time to require a surgeon general's warning label on social media platforms." The move would require congressional action and is just one of many ideas aimed at protecting kids.


DR. VIVEK MURTHY, U.S. SURGEON GENERAL: It is our moral responsibility as a society to take care of our kids. And in that mission, when it comes to social media, we are not doing well. We are failing. But we have a chance to get it right.


WALLACE: Kara, should social media come with a mental health warning from the surgeon general?

SWISHER: You're going to be surprised. No. I think it's a stunt. It's a good start, it's good to talk about it and everything else, but there can be actually effective things you can do, such as removing cell phones from schools that they don't get to use them, talking about doing more studies, independent studies. It's not clear --

WALLACE: I was going to say, why not putting these kind of warnings on social media --

SWISHER: Because it pretends it solves the problem. The real problem is actually taking action. This is just -- it's not like cigarettes, because one of the things, the weakness for the surgeon general here is the studies are unclear, and also that it's not going -- the effectiveness is whether this is actually going to be effective. He also talked about social media being good. You never said cigarettes were good for people. And so it's complex.

WALLACE: I want to pick up on that. These warning labels would be like those on tobacco and alcohol. And it's interesting, since the cigarette warning was passed in 1965, the number of Americans who smoke has dropped from 42 percent to 12. But some researchers say while smoking is inherently dangerous, the harm from social media depends on what the young person is doing online. So Kristan, are you OK? What do you think about this idea of warning labels on social media?

ANDERSON: I think the data is preliminary but leans towards suggesting that there are real potential harms for young people. With that said, when I hear, let's put a warning label on it, I think about every time I go to California, everything in the state has a label on it that says this may cause reproductive harm. And eventually the warnings, they just blurt out. They don't actually solve a problem.

So I agree with what Kara said that there are real harms, we need to study it more. But I don't like the idea of the government coming in and saying this is bad. We have decided this is bad. We have seen people become less and less trusting of science because people believe that, oh, one study, suddenly we're going to make a hole policy out of it. And I worry that this is just another chapter in that kind of a saga.

WALLACE: Then there's the vote by the Los Angeles Board of Education this week to come up with a plan to ban cell phones in school all day, not just in classes. Eliana, does banning cell phones all the time in school go too far?

JOHNSON: I'm totally fine with it. I am for getting cell phones out of schools and kidding kids back to books with actual pages. Of course, there are limits on what the government can and should do when it comes to children, but these are public schools run by the government. I'm 100 percent OK with it.

WALLACE: And not just classes. Recess, any other time, open periods -- no cell phones in school.

JOHNSON: I think we can talk about the details in terms of can the kid walk off the campus and call their parents or whatever it is. But I'm totally fine with eliminating cell phones from schools. We didn't have them when we grew up. We used the school phone to call our parents.

WALLACE: They didn't exist.

JOHNSON: We turned out OK.

ANDERSON: Gen Z now has this interesting nostalgia for the millennial high school experience, because we actually got to be present with one another rather than being constantly on our phone and living almost exclusively in this virtual world.

ANDERSON: Kristen and I had carrier pigeons.


HENDERSON: And it was a big deal.

WALLACE: Nia, how far would you go? Would you ban them? Would you just ban them during classes, all day, or would you say no ban at all?

HENDERSON: I think a ban of some sort, and you see some schools already doing that, particularly private schools in sort of more suburban school districts with sort of a better tax base. And so I think for schools this is going to be important. It's going to be important for kids so they can talk to each other, right? Instead of just looking down at their phones all the time. I think this is a great idea.

SWISHER: There is an issue. China does this with games. It is a slippery slope into government control of people's ability to use whatever devices they want. And so China has these, kids can only be on from a certain time to a certain time, gaming and everything else. And so I worry a little bit about that idea of like legislating every single thing.

WALLACE: Well, this raises the larger question, Kara, which is, when and where should government trump parental rights?

SWISHER: "Parental rights" has been such a misused term. The idea -- they do it all the time. Government does it all the time is trumping parental rights, and parents trump government sometimes. And I do think in the case of phones in schools, they're a distraction. They are clearly a distraction. I think a lot of people shouldn't be using them all day long.

The problem is parents are addicted, kids are addicted, everybody is addicted. And we start to look at it as an addictive thing and study it more, we will understand -- we need to better understand the addictive nature of these devices.


WALLACE: Kristen, as a conservative, certainly more so than Kara, what's your feeling about government and parental rights and where you --

ANDERSON: I think government should only trump parental rights when there is clear harm happening to a child. And I think even as much as we believe that social media has real potential, potential harms to children, I don't think there's a whole lot about what your child is using social media too much that to me steps into a government should be taking over for a parent.

However, in the public school setting, there is this kind of in loco parentis, you, the school sort of takes over that parental role temporarily. And so I think once you're off the school grounds, it's up to the parent. But when you're in class, and in school, I do think that there is room for more of those regulations.

HENDERSON: I think most parents would welcome this, right? They want their student and their child to be paying attention in math class, in English class, rather than looking at their phone.

WALLACE: But you were going to --

SWISHER: Not everybody. There's a lot of parents that want to be in full touch with their kids all the time, which is another issue. And so there's been a lot of pushback in some schools, although I would say kid has a medical problem, maybe they could be able to carry some sort of device. But otherwise, they could go to --

JOHNSON: There are plenty of ways around this for kids to let their parents know if there are issues. But I do think it sends a salutary message of this is what school is for, this is what our society approves and disapproves of. You can do whatever you want on your own time.

WALLACE: As a conservative, are you worried at all? I mean, school is a special case. Are you worried at all about the big brother aspect of government coming in and telling parents, basically setting limits on how parents raise their kids?

JOHNSON: Sure. And I have lots of disagreements with what public schools there actually teaching kids, and there's plenty of room for conservatives to push back on that. You've had entire political campaigns run on that. And I think this issue can be litigated in the same sort of way, but my personal view is cell phones should not be in schools.

WALLACE: OK. Right to Eliana Johnson.

A popular toy isn't just for kids anymore. And now cops say adults are building a black market for them.

Plus, from Netflix and chill to Netflix and skill -- how the streaming giant is turning its popular shows into theme park style attractions and games.



WALLACE: Once again, it's time to get our groups yea or nay on some big talkers. Up first, watch out, Disney. Netflix is getting into the entertainment venue game, but not yet actual theme parks. Instead, so- called Netflix houses are coming to two locations, Dallas and outside Philadelphia. They will be a place to shop, eat, and immerse yourself in some of the streaming giant's most popular shows, like competing in a "Squid Game" or dancing in a "Bridgerton" ball. Kara, are you yea or nay on taking up residence in a Netflix show?

SWISHER: Yea. I love "Bridgerton" so much I can't stand it. And the recent season was excellent. They have tried this. Netflix has done this with some "Stranger Things." I forget which ones, but they've been trying them out at sort of tech events, and now they're bringing it. I find it incredibly entertaining. It's a great idea to get the brand out. I love it.

WALLACE: So are you saying that if there was a Netflix house here in the Washington, D.C. area and there was a "Bridgerton" ball.

SWISHER: You and I would be dancing. Yes, I will wear a dress, Chris. That's how bad it is.


SWISHER: And we will dance the minuet.

WALLACE: We will dance the minuet. But you'll have to teach me first.

Kristen, can you see taking your girls, I know one is a little bit young, to a Netflix house, particularly if they have attractions and play off some of the very popular kid shows on Netflix?

ANDERSON: Sure. If there was a Bluey land somewhere, I would have to spend all of my money getting wherever it is. So I know that's not a Netflix property. But yes, I actually --

WALLACE: They have Cocomelon, though.

ANDERSON: I have not exposed to a cocomelon yes. I've heard, speaking of addictive things for children that might be --

WALLACE: I have a couple of grandchildren. They tune out.

Next, a month out from the Summer Olympics, we have our first look at what Team USA will be wearing. Once again, Ralph Lauren designed the looks, which are heavy on red, white, blue, and lots of denim. For the opening ceremony, American athletes will wear traditional blue jeans with Navy blazers and oxford shirts, and at the closing event, check out these racing style jackets and white denim with a classic polo shirt. Now, some critics say the designs are dated and a bit conservative. Eliana, are you giving these uniforms a gold, silver, bronze, or nothing at all?

JOHNSON: I mean, far be it for me to disagree with Ralph Lauren, but I am a no on these uniforms.


They don't really look that athletic to me. I kind of wanted to see American athletes in like wonderful athletic gear. And I am not about the jeans for the Olympic stage.


HENDERSON: I agree. I think there's no cohesion. It's like you've got to tie on, and then you've got these, like, I don't know if these are stone washed jeans or acid washed jeans. I think they're certainly too light. I like the conservative idea, the white books. I love books. But I think this is a miss for Ralph Lauren. They should also maybe give this to somebody else. He has done it for a number of Olympics. Maybe there is some younger, cheaper designer.

WALLACE: I just want to say, as someone who wears polo shirts all the time, how dare you?


WALLACE: Finally, a new crime wave based on a surprising trend. This week, we learned about an organized theft ring, people stealing Legos, yes, Legos, from stores and selling them on the black market. It's gotten so bad some stores are now locking them up. In California police have recovered tens of thousands of dollars in stolen Lego sets. And it turns out the hot toys are not for kids. Legos or massively popular among adults, both on social media and large events like BrickCon, which is the longest running Lego fan exhibition in the U.S.

Kara, are you yea or nay on Legos? Or in effect, are you, and I never knew this term until yesterday, an AFOL, an adult fan of Legos?


SWISHER: I'm not. I would like all the Legos gone from my house. My son was a Lego fiend. I've been to Lego Land. Enough with the Legos. I would like them to go. My feet have been hurt by them, by stepping on them many years. So I'm against Legos no matter what.

WALLACE: Kristen, where are you on Lego?

ANDERSON: I'm very pro. An inordinate amount of my home decor is Lego creations, because you think of Lego creations as I'm going to build --

WALLACE: Let's put some of them up while you talk.

ANDERSON: -- a plane. I'm going to build -- no, no. This is a small bonsai tree. You can change out the pink to be green during different times of year. This is a picture of one my husband built. It's sitting on our mantle.

We've also got Jurassic Park. This one was really fun.

WALLACE: This is the gate.

ANDERSON: The gate from the film.

WALLACE: Look at that raptor behind him. ANDERSON: I know. He's a vicious predator, indeed. And we've also so

got, there's ones for BB-8, the Saturn 5 rocket that used to sit behind me in my office, so during the early pandemic on Zooms, I'd have something fun behind me. There are plenty of ways adults can use Legos.

WALLACE: All I can say is wow.

The panel is back with their takes on hot stories or what will be in the news before it's news. That's right after the break.



WALLACE: It's time for our panel's special takes on what's happening or predictions of what we should be looking out for. So Kristen, hit me with your best shot.

ANDERSON: So I'm keeping an eye on what's happening in Louisiana. The state legislature there has just passed a law that would require classrooms to display the Ten Commandments and in readable, relatively large font. And what frustrates me about this as a conservative, and personally as a Christian, is we have just been fighting these battles around what is it that schools are teaching children? Are schools pushing a viewpoint on children? This is obviously schools trying to push a viewpoint on children.

And the center right has been winning lots of battles around things like school choice, saying if you don't like schools, you should be able to take your children elsewhere. This is just, I think, a huge misstep. I think it's going to set the right back in terms of its quest to help fashion a school system that is more free and puts parents' choices more at the center. And this is not going away either. It's going to get challenged court. This is going to be creating headlines for the foreseeable future.

WALLACE: Nia, you are looking at a key voting bloc that Democrats have depended on for a long time and are in danger of maybe losing their big edge.

HENDERSON: That's right. African American voters, you can see the Biden team, Joe Biden as well as Kamala Harris really having an uphill battle with African American voters, particularly African American voters who are under 50. A lot of this work is also going to fall to outside groups, groups like Black Voters Matter. It's based in Georgia and has had some success there with the Georgia Senate race, for instance.

And groups like Collective PAC, they are going to be trying to register voters. They've got an effort, 250,000 African American voters in five swing states. That is going to be something that I'm keeping an eye on because they have got to figure out how to close this sort of gap that they have in terms of what Biden did in 2020 with African American voters and how polls see him doing right now. WALLACE: Eliana, best shot.

JOHNSON: Trump campaign in Las Vegas last weekend, and he floated an interesting policy proposal. He wants to eliminate taxes on tips. And it got a positive reception in the Senate where Senator Ted Cruz is now floating a law that would do this. And it is an interesting way for Trump through policy rather than style to court working class voters. I'll be watching whether he carries this through on the campaign trail and continues to talk about it.

WALLACE: Kara, you're just back from more of your world travels. What did you bring us?

SWISHER: Yes. I came all the way back from the south of France to see you, Chris. So you're welcome.

WALLACE: I think that's a wise choice.

SWISHER: It was Cannes Lions, which is a big advertising event there. It's not the film event. And a lot of the talk, obviously, was on A.I.


But I thought the most interesting discussions were how advertisers have pulled out of news content and how they should move back into it because they're a safe space for advertisers to go, for brands to go. Social media has become very unsafe. Elon Musk was there spewing all kinds of nonsense. But what was interesting was that a lot of advertisers were sort of open to the idea of returning to real news content. And these companies really need them to do so.

WALLACE: But, well, I know what from the media's point of view they want it, but the companies, is it good for business for them to be associated with a lot of the negative news that is in the media?

SWISHER: Well, its, it's better than being around porn and ads and things like that. And so I think they're starting to see that maybe there are some benefits --

WALLACE: That's going to be the headlines in one of the news links, "Better than Porn."

SWISHER: Yes, "Better than Porn."


WALLACE: Gang, thank you all for being here, and thank you for spending part of your day with us. We'll see you right back here next week.