Return to Transcripts main page

Erin Burnett Outfront

"Absolute Evil": Zelenskyy Condemns Strike On Cultural Center; Bodycam Footage Shows Ukrainian Forces Battling Russians; Russia Fires Commanders Who "Performed Poorly": UK Intel Report; Judge Rules COVID Border Restrictions Must Stay In Effect For Now; Emails: Ginni Thomas Pressed Arizona Lawmakers To Overturn Biden's Win; New Video Shows Mom Confront Woman Hoarding Formula At Store. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired May 20, 2022 - 19:00   ET




On the front lines. Terrifying new bodycam video from Ukrainian soldiers reveals a fierce firefight taking place just outside Kharkiv as Putin is now said to be firing some of his top commanders.

Plus, the Dow suffering its eighth straight week of losses. That is the longest streak in 100 years since before the Great Depression. Is a recession not a question of if, not now, but when?

And breaking news, a federal judge blocking President Biden from lifting Title 42? That has been used almost 2 million times to turn migrants away from the U.S. border. So, they say they're going to appeal it, but was the ruling resuming a big political gift to Biden?

Let's go OUTFRONT.

And good evening. I'm Erin Burnett.

OUTFRONT tonight, absolute evil, absolute stupidity -- those are the exact words of Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy after a cultural center outside Kharkiv was destroyed by a missile. You can see the strike there, cultural center and fireball then follows. The debris raining down. Ukrainians who are driving by at the time of the strike later seen running for their lives as the cloud of black smoke rises behind them.

And today's attack coming as Ukraine's forces have been successful overall in pushing Russian forces back, specifically from Kharkiv, and tonight, we have dramatic new body cam footage that shows the fierce fight taking place outside what is the second biggest city in Ukraine.


BURNETT: Those bruising battles that Russia continues to lose is partly why some of Putin's top commanders have been fired, relieved of duty because they've been considered to have, quote, performed poorly during the initial stages of the invasion, an invasion which failed to capture Kyiv and has gone downhill in many areas from there. Antiwar protests becoming more fearless although the United States still says tonight the U.S. does not believe public opinion in Russia will persuade Putin to end his invasion, even when criticism is from a former Russian colonel.


RUSSIAN COLONEL (through translator): I must say, let's not drink information tranquilizers, because sometimes information is spread about hearing some moral or psychological breakdown of Ukraine's armed forces, as if they're nearing the crisis of morale or a fracture. None of this is close to reality.


BURNETT: Now, that colonel said all of these things in Russian state TV. It was shocking, but then backtracked and said any talk of a Ukrainian counterattack is a, quote, big exaggeration, getting right back into the fold.

Nick Paton Walsh is OUTFRONT. He is live in Kharkiv, tonight.

And, Nick, what is the latest on the ground there?

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR: Yeah, certainly interesting news today about the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol, which Russia claims it has now completed the liberation of. Obviously, that's a ridiculous term for an essential destruction and persecution of those there.

And at the same time, Ukraine says it's given the order to stop that plants defend still possibly that ongoing heroic, frankly, defiant stance of Ukrainian forces in that port city maybe becoming to an end.

Around the country, in the east around Donbas and Luhansk, we are seeing possible, slight incremental Russian advances and Ukraine pushing Russian forces back around here the second night in the city of Kharkiv. But still, as Russian retreats, extraordinary destruction have been unleashed in its wake as we saw just outside the city over the last two days.


WALSH (voice-over): Putin would choke the life and light out of here. We are driving into the smoke of an incendiary munitions attack, we're told here, against the civilian village. Homes, fields, even the air itself torched.

Vera (ph) says she saw it falling from the sky and her neighbor hit.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (translated): Phosphorus or bright sparks of some kind, were flying. That's a fire. Before that, a bomb landed there. It blew up three houses, I think.

WALSH: The incendiary munitions which burned hot through everything in its path came after heavy normal shelling -- which makes you question, like so much here, exactly why Russia needed to heat fire on top of heavy explosive.


It hit just ten minutes ago, this man says, pointing the way. Some left bewildered. Others in the first moments of shock.

Valentina is very matter-of-fact as she describes what happened to Viktor in her neighbor's house.

VALENTINA, TSYRKUNY RESIDENT (translated): There was an explosion, smoke all around. He climbed into the attic, to see if it was on fire. Immediately, there was another explosion in the year. I should "Viktor!" He's not there.

WALSH: She shows us the courtyard where a dead man lies, a large hole in his chest and an ear torn off. She points to the body just behind the tree and then says, here he is.

VALENTIA: He's my husband.

WALSH: Viktor had rushed to check on their neighbor's home.

Russia occupied here for weeks, and as it retreats, these tiny corners of green are where it visits its anger.

Up the road towards Russia's last position before the border, the shells land even closer. Natalia's husband died in shelling weeks ago, and the houses, like almost everything here, ruined.

NATALIA, CHETKASKI TYSHKY RESIDENT (translated): We've lived through everything already. I have no strength or patience left after my husband was torn to pieces. We must understand how hard it is.

WALSH: For the weeks when here was occupied, she lived across the street from an enormous Russian base.

Our guides from Ukrainian rapid response unit were cautious. Fighting is intensifying up at the road and they know the Russians got comfortable here.

Their base, even needed this aircraft warning device up high to tell Russian jets it was friendly.

This is their problem each time they move forward. Here they are and what was once the Russian position, and look all around you, impossible to know who is really in control of this area where the fight happening just on the other side of the hill.

The smell of corpses among the pines, and every footstep, a threat of mines. Everywhere you look, foxholes, ammunition boxes, clearly a significant Russian base here. They're calling it a little town, using this forest as cover, but clearly hit really hard.

The tomb of the unknown Russian soldiers, this says, ghoulish relics here, where it once buzzed with the brutish clumsy task of besieging the city. Smoldering in the trees here, but swallowed in a toll of silence.


WALSH (on camera): It's important to remember, Erin, as we hear the story around Ukraine talk more about the stalemate here about the tiny gains made, how Ukraine possibly will essentially, through better NATO weapon, maybe begin to feel its coming out on top. None of that reduces the kind of damage that we are seeing Russia do in its retreat when it feels it's losing, when it feels frustrated.

Even here in Kharkiv, there's been breathing so much more easily over the past weeks. Each night we hear heavy explosions in the distance. Just now in fact. That is essentially with people fear here Moscow is going to do, even if it loses, cause as much damage as it possibly to ordinary life here, Erin.

BURNETT: Yeah. All right. Thank you very much, Nick, with that incredible report.

I want to go now to retired Army Lieutenant General Mark Hertling, the former commanding general of Europe and the Seventh Army.

So, General, when you see Nick's piece and this utter destruction. Russia attacked with phosphorus, on top of shelling. As they leave -- I mean, you know, we saw places where they had put mines underneath the carpets of peoples home so they could try to kill innocent people when they returned, right? It's a scorched-earth retreat.

In some areas, you heard Nick say it's impossible now to even tell who's in control with this back and forth. What is happening here as you see it?

LT. GEN. MARK HERTLING (RET.), CNN MILITARY ANALYST: What you are seeing is an attempt by Russia to expand the area that they hold in the Donbas. And, truthfully, it's failing. They will come out of there. They will conduct reconnaissance and force maneuver elements will try and go forward, but then they find themselves being attacked by Ukraine.

This is a scene from 1916 in the Western Front.


It is -- Nick used the word stalemate. It is less than that, because there is maneuver attempts on both sides.

The Russians come forward and try to occupy a bit of land. The Ukrainian forces, which don't have the mobility as the Russians do, will attack them, and then the Russians will withdraw. And it's relegated to an artillery duel, back and forth.

That's what we're seeing. We are seeing by all accounts that Russia is suffering quite a bit of casualties and quite a bit of equipment damage. So this is really boiling down to a war of attrition, which many of us predicted weeks ago between the two forces, and in my view, Ukraine has the upper hand. They have better weapons, and they're going up against the force with low morale and the inability to maneuver outside of the Donbas area.

BURNETT: So, according to British intelligence, General Hertling, Putin has now fired senior commanders who were considered to have, quote/unquote, performed poorly, during the initial stages of the invasion.

And we've also learned that Putin is directly participating in decision-making, but in most western armies would be reserved for lower ranking officers. You know, as you start to hear all this kind of confirmation coming in from intelligence agencies, how does this impact Putin's army?

HERTLING: It's a great question, Erin, because it's severely affected in several ways, with second and third order effect. When you relieve the generals in charge, the generals that take over for them are then afraid to talk to their senior commanders about what is going wrong. So, it becomes a toxic leadership environment.


HERTLING: But not only that, you've got the subordinate leaders who are used to a very autocratic system of reporting up the chain of command and not doing anything that they are not told to do. So the ranks below them, the maneuver units, the movement units are frozen in place. And they don't have the initiative or adaptability to conduct maneuver operations.

And again, this is where Ukraine, which has been studying more of a Western approach over the last ten years has the advantage because they would use that -- they are frozen. The Russians are frozen in place. They will move slightly, but then counterattacks will come and push them back while destroying their equipment.

And Russia has a great deal more equipment, and that equipment is manned by soldiers. So, when that equipment is attacked by infantry soldiers just frankly -- gives the Ukrainians the advantage.

BURNETT: Well, it's incredible. And you drive through the Ukrainian countryside, all you see are these burnt out tanks everywhere and vehicles. It is just jarring. It's everywhere. They litter -- they litter the landscape.

So, Trevor Reed, as you know, the U.S. citizen and former marine who is just recently freed after two years in a Russian prison just sat down and spoke exclusively with my colleague, Jake Tapper. He described to Jake when it was like in prison. I wanted to play one of their exchanges.


JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: What was the worst conditions that you had, that you experienced at that time?

TREVOR REED, FORMER MARINE RELEASED FROM RUSSIAN PRISON: The psychiatric treatment, I was in there with seven other prisoners in my cell. They all had severe serious psychological health issues, most of them -- so over 50 percent of them in that cell were in there murder, were like multiple murders, sexual assault and murder, just really disturbed individuals.

And inside of that cell, you know, that was not a good place. There is blood all over the walls there, where prisoners had to kill themselves or kill other prisoners, or attempted to do that. The toilet is just a hole in the floor, and there is, you know -- crap everywhere all over the floor, on the walls.

There's people in there, also that walk around, and look like zombies --

TAPPER: Where you afraid for your life?

REED: I mean, I did not sleep there for a couple of days, I was too worried about, you, know who was in the cell with me to actually sleep.

TAPPER: You thought they might kill you?

REED: Yes, I thought that was a possibility.


BURNETT: Now, Russian officials have defended the conditions that Reed was kept in as satisfactory or in lined with Russian laws. So, I have to say that, General.

But does Reed's description surprise you at all?

HERTLING: Not a bit, not a bit, Erin. This is -- these are the kind of conditions you would find it any kind of gulag, in any kind of camps, and any kind of facility where there is extrajudicial approaches. And we can go back even further, and we could say, this is the kind of conditions you would find in camps during World War II, where the Holocaust occurred.

So what you're talking about is continued approach to try to dehumanize these individuals, and take their soul away from them. And that's the way the Russian does -- do conduct business. It's in all their books about their gulags, so there is no surprises to me about any of this.


BURNETT: Consistent.

All right. General, thank you very much.

And so everyone knows, you can see the full interview with Trevor Reed and Jake, Sunday night at 8:00.

And next, the S&P today briefly entering bear market territory. The Dow posting its eighth weekly decline in a row, that is the longest in a century. Is there a recession looming? Plus, breaking news a judge just blocked Biden's plans to lift

immigration restrictions at the border, restrictions that prevent up to 18,000 migrants a day from entering the United States.

And 11 countries now reporting nearly 150 confirmed or suspected cases of a monkeypox, as we learning to details about the man in Massachusetts who is being treated tonight for the virus.


BURNETT: And tonight, Wall Street panic. The Dow finishing down overall for the eight week running. That makes it the longest week losing streak in a century since the Great Depression.

And the S&P 500 for the first time, since the pandemic, fell into bear market territory. That means a drop of more than 20 percent from its record high and, that was in January.

It's the fast plunge, and it comes as a new "AP" poll shows President Biden's job approval at 39 percent. That is the lowest it's been in his presidency.

MJ Lee is OUTFRONT in Seoul, she's traveling with President Biden.

And, MJ, we see this panic in the markets.


We see an incredible amount of stress and deep concern among average Americans about the economy.

Is there panic at the White House?

MJ LEE, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, there's no question, Erin, that this is very tough economic news for President Biden, coming in the middle of a major foreign trip, where he really hoped to focus on the health of the U.S. economy, and the global economy.

Exhibit A, Erin, is that this as soon as the president landed here in Korea, the first place that he went to was a Samsung semiconductor plant. He wanted to go see the chips that are being produced there, and really talk about how they're trying to resolve supply chain issues, and try to sort of talk in a rosy way, about what can happen when different nations work together.

And then, a couple of hours ago, we saw that statement coming out from the White House, where they touted low unemployment numbers across the country, and also, record growth, a data point that the White House has been talking about for a number of months now.

But you can trust all of that, Erin, with this news that is happening back home for President Biden, with S&P 500 venturing into their market territory. And you know that when the stock market falls, that hurts American investors. It hurts people who with saving 's tied up in the market, and all of that is exacerbated by the fact that inflation is at record highs, with everything costing so much more. So the bottom line is that this is president who certainly does not

want to be seeing more bad economic news. I just want to quickly point to two recent polls that we see coming out of the U.S., that show only two in one, two in ten Americans, rather, believe that the U.S. is on the right track. Only 4 percent of people say that they are excited about the way that things are going.

So, we'll see whether this is an issue that the president talks about, and how he talks about this issue, when he is set to have a bilateral meeting with President Yoon Suk-yeol of South Korea, just in a matter of hours from now, Erin.

BURNETT: All right. MJ, thank you very much.

I want to bring in Jim Bianco now, economic and the president of Bianco Research.

So, Jim, look, the Dow losing streak is the worst it's been since before the Great Depression, the S&P dipping into bear market territory for the first time since the economy collapse, at the start of the pandemic.

Look, the indicators are sort of clashing bright red no matter what you look at right now. Is the U.S. headed for a pretty deep recession?

JIM BIANCO, ECONOMIC ANALYST, BIANCO RESEARCH PRESIDENT: Well, it seems to be headed towards a recession. That is what the markets are trying to tell you, and you can also throw in the big rise in interest rates, which by some measures is the biggest in record. We have 200 years of data in the bond market, but never seen a sell-off to this degree before.

And, you can throw and at the conference survey yesterday of CEOs, and 60 percent of them think that the U.S. is headed for recession.

So, the market is consistent with all of this belief, to use the Fed term, they were hoping that they can bring the economy in for a soft landing, to reduce the inflation rate. But they're getting more worried, and it's going to be a hard landing, which is a nice way of saying a recession.

BURNETT: Right. Well said, right? A hard landing means recession. And yet, you talk about the interest rates surging. The biggest increase you're talking about in 200 years, well, that's coming, because we've seen prices surge, food prices up 10 percent. Gas prices, at a new record, $4.59 a gallon.

There's a conversation in this country now that, casually, doesn't sort of include these topics. Even home prices are up nearly 15 percent from a year ago, as so many people are looking for housing. So, where is all this go? I mean, is this going to keep rising?

BIANCO: Well, ironically, this is part of the feds plan, is to, in their terms, back and financial conditions, which means to lower risk markets like the stock market, like the broad market, and hopefully set demand of people that own stocks and bonds, which is again another nice way of saying, you'll buy less things, and that should bring inflation off the oil and hopefully bring it down. So this is part of the plan.

It's a dangerous high wire act. It's one thing to say, tightening policy to bring down interest -- to bring down inflation, but not get it out of hand. So, hopefully, they can kind of keep it intact. But the market is losing confidence.

BURNETT: Yeah, certainly so.

All right. Jim Bianco, thank you very much. Sobering situation, one must wonder for the 4 percent are excited about the direction in which the country is going.

OUTFRONT next, breaking news, a federal judge blocking Biden from lifting a pandemic policy that turns migrants away. So was his decision a huge political gift for Biden?

Plus, a mother confronts another woman, who was pulling her cart with baby formula.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Look at those. Look at all this.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I need it for my baby.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Look at the shelves!


BURNETT: The mother who filmed that video is my guest.


How has it come to this?


BURNETT: Breaking news: A federal judge has blocked the Biden administration from lifting Title 42. That's the Trump era policy allowing the U.S. to turn migrants at the border. And it was put in place at the start of the pandemic. It was set to expire on Monday, which could mean up to 18,000 migrants starting to flood over the U.S. border every single day.

Rosa Flores is OUTFRONT in Hidalgo, Texas.

And, Rosa, major decision impacting, well, thousands of people where you are tonight. This is -- this is a huge rolling.

ROSA FLORES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, it's very complicated, Erin, because on the Mexican side, you've got 6,000 to 7,000 migrants who have been waiting for Title 42 to lift. I'm told the anxiety there has been building. On the U.S. side, I talk to law enforcement and elected officials have been warning Title 42 to stay in place. So, they are probably breathing a sigh of relief.

But then you got activist and immigration attorneys who aren't condemning the decision by this judge. Now separately from all this, we've been tracking a new pattern of homelessness among newly arrived migrants.


FLORES (voice-over): This 27-year-old Haitian woman is seven months pregnant. She and her husband have been at the south Texas shelter for three days.

They say that they left Haiti because the situation was dangerous in Haiti.

They are part of an unprecedented surge of migrants at the southern border. More than 1.2 million people have attempted to enter through Mexico since October, about half have been expelled over Title 42, the pandemic health order that allows immigration agents to return migrants to Mexico without a hearing. The other half have been allowed into the U.S. pending their immigration cases.

Where are you going?


FLORES: Bridgeport, Connecticut?

Nora and Franz (ph) want to go by their first names for their safety and say they have no money to get to their final destination. They are part of a new pattern happening at the border, migrants entering the U.S. with no money and no immediate family to stay with. Or the family and friends they did have backed out.

That was the case with this group of migrant men and San Antonio.

How many of you had money to buy a ticket to get your destination?


FLORES: The result, a growing homeless population that could only get bigger when Title 42 lifts, and up to 18,000 migrants attempt to enter the U.S. every day.

In Miami, Malena Legarre says she's already helped hundreds of homeless migrants.

MALENA LEGARRE, HOUSING DIRECTOR, HERMANOS DE LA CALLE: There has been 60 families that we cared off since December, 280, almost 300 people, 100 are under 18.

FLORES: She runs a small nonprofit and says she's housing about 15 migrant families, including Josie (ph) and Gender (ph) and their three children. The Venezuelan couple asked CNN to use their first names only -- and says they'd be on the streets if it wasn't for Legarre.

Migrants continue to call for help, Legarre says her housing capacity is maxed out.

LEGARRE: So, we are offering relocation.

FLORES: To Wichita, Cincinnati, Detroit and New York City, she says.

Ismael Martinez (ph) is an artist from Venezuela. He was with a group of men we spoke with in San Antonio last month.

He says that after two days, his girlfriend's aunt told him that he had to leave the home. He says he's now homeless in New York City.

Naya (ph) says she's homeless, too, along with her two children. She asked CNN not to show her face nor share her full name. A month into living with her cousin in New York City --

She told you had to leave?

She said she ended up on the street and now lives in a homeless shelter.

ALEJANDRO MAYORKAS, SECRETARY, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY: We are addressing the challenge of irregular migration. The Biden administration issued a 20-page border plan for the end of Title 42.

People like Ron Book for Miami-Dade's homeless trust are sounding the alarm about the increase in homeless migrants.

RON BOOK, CHAIRMAN, MIAMI-DADE COUNTY HOMELESS TRUST: I cannot be responsible for the cost from a flawed immigration policy that has no legitimate plans.

FLORES: As for the Haitian couples --

He said that his cousin is willing to take them into their homes.

Naya (ph) and Ismael say that's what they were told, but the situation changed dramatically and now they're homeless.


FLORES (on camera): We asked the White House and DHS about the story, and the administration directed us to the border plan that was issued by DHS, specifically to the portion of the plan where it says that the administration is going to bolster the capacity for nonprofit.

So, we followed up asking, what is the plan for the interior of the country where we are seeing this pattern of homelessness? And, Erin, we were directed back to the border plan.

BURNETT: Wow. All right. Rosa, thank you very much. It's sort of shocking, on so many levels.

Joining me now: Scott Jennings, former advisor to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Keisha Lance Bottoms, former mayor of Atlanta.

So, Scott, I want to talk about the breaking news here, right? The judge comes out and Title 42, you have 18,000 they say, migrants coming over the border. You heard Rosa. Half a million people were waiting, and that that is not going to happen. They're not going to come.

Now, the Biden administration says they're going to appeal it, but we understand looking at this, it's going to take months. So, did the Biden administration just get saved from a political disaster?

SCOTT JENNINGS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, it's a humanitarian crisis. It's a policy crisis, and it is a political crisis for Biden. Yeah, I would say this judge stepped in and saved him, just the way the federal judge did on the mask mandates for airlines.

But then Joe Biden, of course, immediately said he's going to appeal the ruling.


It's never made any sense here. The Biden administration's position was at the pandemic I guess was over for illegal immigrants. But it's not over for American citizens who want to move freely around their own country. That's the position they were on and it's now based on this appeal, the position they are still on.

Apart from all the humanitarian and policy problems here, this is a political matter, Erin. This is a major drag on Biden. It is a full- blown political crisis.

You've got even Democrats, it's not Republican on Democrats violence, this is Democrats and Republicans in Congress both screaming at the Biden administration to get a handle on this border situation. Everybody knows what a disaster it is.

BURNETT: Former DOJ obviously and expert, Harry Litman, is telling us, you know, looking at the press -- White House press release where they say they're going to appeal this, they're going to appeal it on merit is how he sees it. So, this could take months.

So, the question is are they trying to get through the midterms or not. It's unclear.

Keisha, let me ask you, you know, to Scott's point, this isn't actually Democrat versus Republican issues because a lot of Democrats, elected Democrats in Congress have said that what's going on, and just allowing these migrants to flood over the border is a crisis. Here is what Democrats have said about the president's decision to lift Title 42 and allow that immigration.


SEN. MARK KELLY (D-AZ): Right now, this administration does not have a plan. I warned them about this months ago. To be honest, it's going to be a crisis on top of a crisis. SEN. MAGGIE HASSAN (D-NH): I'm going to keep pushing the

administration to develop a really strong, strategic plan for how we will secure our borders when Title 42 is lifted. I'm going to keep pushing them to delay Title 42 until that plan is in place.


BURNETT: Again, a judge is forcing that. That's not where the administration in. Should the president listen to members of his own party on this, Mayor Bottoms?

KEISHA LANCE BOTTOMS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, there are many members of the party who support the president's decision in lifting Title 42. We know that there are several Democrats on who have expressed concern, but isn't that the beauty of the Democratic Party? That you could disagree with the leader of the party and he not try to slash your throat, unlike what is happening with the Republican Party.

So the president has said in the White House that they will appeal this. The White House stuck with what it said it would do, that they would try to lift Title 42 and try to do just that. There is a process, and that process will play out in the courts.

This was -- this injunction was based on procedural matters from my understanding. And there is a comment process that is required.


BOTTOMS: And that may take several weeks or months. So, the White House has been true to its word, will appeal, and that's the beauty of the Democratic Party, that we can agree to disagree.

BURNETT: Scott, when you talk about the timing here, Mayor Bottoms is laying out and as Harry Litman saw this, right, you may not see the pictures of tens of thousands of migrants suddenly surging over the border, that a lot of Republicans were banking on coming into midterms. So, we may, but we may not, right? The timing here now is in question.

Does that take away a major point for the GOP in the midterms?

JENNINGS: Well, people are still coming over. I mean, illegal immigration is still a crisis. Even with Title 42 in place, one of the few policies that was actually working. You still have a massive surge. Our reporter just that over a million crossing since October. So, it's still a major problem, and all that comes with, it including the drug problem, the fentanyl problem flooding states all over the country.

To Mayor Bottoms' point, if this is the beauty of Democratic -- I hate to see the ugly parts. I mean, this Democratic Party under a Democratic president and Congress is presiding over a massive crisis.

One of the things in the report that we heard that struck me the most was the housing issue. We had a housing shortage in this country and it's already affecting people who live here already. Not to mention the folks who are coming. So, crisis on top of crisis, political problems for the president.

BURNETT: Mayor Bottoms, I'd like to give you a quick final word on that point, you know, that Rosa they kept addressing, you know, go to the report, but are any of these Democrats who say that they are for all this doing anything about that?

BOTTOMS: Well, what's Scott wants to do is just ignore the path of several years under the Trump administration that helped create a lot of these issues that we are now experiencing. So, when you talk about a housing crisis, there's also a labor shortage that's directly related to our inability to have effective immigration policies. Policies that were made worse, not made any better under the Trump administration.

And so what we know is that the mass majority of Americans want to see Title 42 ended and also the economy, not immigration, seems to be top of mind for voters right now.


BURNETT: All right. Thank you both very much. I appreciate your time.

And next, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas taking a swipe at Chief Justice John Roberts.


CLARENCE THOIMAS, SUPREME COURT JUSTICE: The court that was together 11 years was a fabulous court. We may have been a dysfunctional family, but we were family.


BURNETT: Plus, I talked to a new mother looking for baby formula, and who actually calls out another woman who was bulking up and hoarding.


BURNETT: Tonight, new emails showing how far Supreme Court justice, Clarence Thomas's wife, Ginni, went to overturn the election. Emails were first reported by "The Washington Post", and they reveal that just two days after Biden was declared president elect, Ginni Thomas emailed two Arizona lawmakers, with the subject line, please do your constitutional duty.

The email then says in part: Article II of the United States Constitution gives you an awesome responsibility, to choose our states electors. This means you have the power to fight back against fraud, the responsibility is yours, and yours alone. Incredible advocacy coming from Supreme Court justice's wife.

And just days before the Electoral College met, Ginni Thomas sends the lawmakers another emails. She says they're in part, quote, please consider what will happen to the nation we all love if you don't stand up.

OUTFRONT now, Joan Biskupic, CNN legal analyst who has covered the Supreme Court extensively for more than 25 years.

So, Joan, let's start here.

This comes after Ginni Thomas admitted that she attended the Stop the Steal rally on January the 6th. And we knew that she sent text messages to Trump's chief of staff Mark Meadows about overturning the election.

So, now, you have all this coming, on top of it. And there are growing calls for Justice Thomas to recuse himself from any cases involving January 6th, as all this comes to light.

Is there any indication he'll do that?

BISKUPIC: No. No, Erin, there is not. Today, he was silent when we asked for any kind of comment. He has been quite throughout all of this.

You know, starting earlier this year, when some of those texts to Mark Meadows first came to light, when it came to light that she was there on January the 6th, at the rally, but, of course, not at the Capitol for the rampage.

But all of these things are part of a peace, and Justice Thomas, as you know, Erin, has sat on 2020 election cases, and January 6th committee case. At that point, though, we didn't know the extent of Ginni Thomas's involvement.

Now, if there is another case that comes up, related to that, I am sure there will be calls for litigants for him to recuse in a specific case. But here is what you should know. The federal law says that any judge or justice should recuse, if his or her impartiality might be questioned. But you know what?

That issue is solely in the hands of the justice to decide. Chief Justice John Roberts says, you know, we do not sit investment of each other, and it is never been tested in the court, whether anyone could then challenge if someone has -- someone at the Supreme Court level has wrongly decided not to recuse.

BURNETT: And you mentioned the chief justice, Justice Thomas, took a stunning and very public swipe at Chief Justice Roberts. Here is what he said.


JUSTICE CLARENCE THOMAS, SUPREME COURT: The court that was together 11 years was a fabulous court. It was when you look forward to being part of. We actually trusted -- it was -- we may have been dysfunctional family, but we were a family. And we loved it.


BURNETT: And that court he's referring to is at the court with the prior chief justice, right? And that was the contrast he was making. What does it say to you that he'd say that publicly? BISKUPIC: Well, Erin, he might have thought that before, but he never

said it publicly. And I think it reflects exactly what's going on right now with a fight over the abortion case. Clarence Thomas is so close to realizing his goal of completely reversing Roe v. Wade. We know from the political draft that at least, one point, there were five justices on that, but the person who could thwart that goal is Chief Justice John Roberts, if he is able to broker any kind of compromise, it's a very steep hill that the chief has to climb, but they might be able to do it, and will know at the end of June, Erin.

BURNETT: Wow. Joan, thank you very much. Incredible to see this from the court in public -- I think you can probably all agree that we wish we learn that it's not good to see the court, this ugly side exposed.

BISKUPIC: And next, a sign of the times. I want to talk to a mother who filmed her confrontation with another woman at Target over formula.

And just in, New York City health officials reporting what they're calling a presumptive positive case of monkeypox.



BURNETT: New tonight, the White House says it will transport its first batch of baby formula from overseas this weekend, which comes amid growing outrage, because the shortage is stretching into its third month. And it's only as the outrage reached a frenzy that the shipments is happening.

Parents are desperate with scenes like this playing out in stores.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Look at this! Look at all this.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I need it for my baby.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Look at the shelves.

You don't think I need it for my baby, too?

This is the whole reason why there is a formula shortage. You take all the formula off the shelf and buy it all at once.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You come after me. I don't know if you get this one.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That doesn't matter. I'm saying this is the whole reason why there is a formula shortage. You come and you buy all the formula at once, and there's kids who need formula today, who won't be able to get it, because you just bought it to stock up.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BURNETT: OUTFRONT now, Autumn Guyer, the mother who recorded that video, who has been struggling to find formula for her three month old baby, Colton, who we're showing there, Autumn.

And I know you were making a point with the video, you didn't film the other woman's face, which I think is important. You were just trying to show the incident and not castigate the person, individually. But tell me what's led up to this video, and what you saw when you got to the baby formula aisle?

AUTUMN GUYER, MOM STRUGGLING TO FIND BABY FORMULA: So, originally, when I got to the baby formula aisle, I expected to see what I had seen since the beginning of May, which is, I know the formula shortage has been going on for a while, more than that but with Colton's formula, specifically, it's been out since the end of May. So, I go to target almost every day of the week, for the past, three weeks now, and checking for formula, checking for the next alternatives for formula.

And that's what I was doing that day. I went there, I saw that they had in stock the next -- the closest thing to his formula. He has a special formula, which he doesn't know when he's on right now.

But when I got there, I stood behind the lady from the moment she had an empty shopping cart. She turned around. We made eye contact. I gave her a smile.

I let her know, you know, with body language, that I was waiting patiently. I wasn't saying anything. She was also on the phone. She was on FaceTime.

And, I proceeded to wait. And she goes back a few more times, and she starts to walk away with the car. I said, excuse me! I proceeded to ask for one can of formula.

BURNETT: So, as you're standing there, clearly waiting, she just takes every can off the shelves!

GUYER: Yes, and like clear as day, there was no other formula, around her, like on the shelves, top or bottom that I could reach out for. Yes, it's clear as day. She just cleared the entire shelf to her cart.

BURNETT: So, when you asked for the bottle, just for one bottle, what did she say?


GUYER: She said, no, this is for my baby. I need to feed my baby. And that's when I started to record, which luckily, I had my camera out already, because I was ready to take a picture of the formula aisles.

And so, I just went over and started reporting, so I kind of want other people to see what it's like to feel kind of helpless as a mother, when you go to the store, with high hopes, and knowing, okay, I have this one thing that I can at least feed my baby with this. BURNETT: So, autumn, I know that you spent every day. As you said,

going to Target, just exhaustion and the stress. How does the situation resolve itself?

GUYER: It really has not. I have not to find formula. I haven't got my hands on any of it whatsoever. I put please out on Facebook, trying to find some. Right now, I'm supplementing with only formula that they have left in store that day, which was Similac Advance and it's nothing close to what he needs.

So it's very rough night, rough days over here with the baby. She's talking (INAUDIBLE) to it. But there's -- I called his pediatrician, there is nothing anybody can do.

BURNETT: Autumn, thank you very much for sharing the story. My heart goes out to you. That stress with him taking it -- you know, and so glad you filmed that. And obviously, you didn't show her face. But I hope people, anyone out there who can understand maybe who was in the other seat, not yours there -- well, think about that differently, because it's just horrible. Thank you so much.

GUYER: Right. Thank you. You have a wonderful night.

BURNETT: You too, Autumn.

Next, why doctors working at a hospital treating a man with monkeypox is calling his infection concerning?


BURNETT: Just in, a patient in New York City now presumptive, positive, they're saying for monkeypox, confirmation of a case pending waiting CDC testing. It comes as 11 countries now reported nearly 150 confirmed or suspected cases. The New York case coming a day after a man in Massachusetts tested positive. That patient had recently traveled to Canada, which is investigating 17 other cases.

We reached out to Dr. Paul Biddinger of Massachusetts General Brigham, which is treating the patient. And .Dr. Biddinger told us that the Massachusetts patient had been hospitalized since May 12th. And they don't know how he got monkeypox but he did not have a travel history to either western or central Africa.

Dr. Biddinger tells OUTFRONT, quote, we have known from previous cases that they are typically associated with travel to Africa and places where illness is endemic, but now, we're seeing a significant number of cases without this history of travel. So, something is different about the transmission right now. And that's why a lot more studies and work is needed.

Thanks for joining us.

"AC360" starts now.