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Early Start with John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin

Pence Plane Involved in Near Accident; Trump Hints at Legal Action Against Access Hollywood; Candidates Financial Situation; Latest on ISIS Fight. Aired 4-5a ET

Aired October 28, 2016 - 04:00   ET


[04:00:12] CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: Breaking news. The NTSB now, investigating a near disaster involving Mike Pence's plane at a New York airport.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Donald Trump talks retaliation. He says he could take legal action over the "Access Hollywood" tape where he bragged about grabbing women's genitals.

ROMANS: Hillary Clinton's slash with campaign cash the last 11 days now at this race, because at the beginning little too comfortable with her lead in the polls?

Good morning and welcome to "Early Start." everybody. I'm Christine Romans, Berman.

BERMAN: I'm John Berman. And it's Friday, it is October 28th, it is 4:00 a.m. in the east.

And Mike Pence his OK this morning but he barely nearly was not. The breaking news, a near disaster involving a plane carrying the vice presidential nominee for the Republican Party, the NTSB team is on the ground in New York right now after his plane, a 737, skidded off the runway at LaGuardia overnight during a landing in rainy, windy weather. The plane came to rest just several hundred feet from the major interstate, no one was hurt.

CNN Producer Liz Landers who was traveling with the Pence campaign, described what happened.


ELIZABETH LANDERS, CNN PRODUCER: You could feel the plane skidding. You could feel the back of the plane too which is where the press is. It felt like it was fish tailing and moving side to side. And then the plane came to a very pretty sharp halt.

And Governor Pence came to the back of the plane just to check the press, asking is everybody OK? And we asked him if he was OK. He said, "Yes." He and his family were fine. He remarked that there was some dirt and mud on his window at the front of the plane.


BERMAN: Officials say a special break-away concrete bed at the end of the runway helped stop the plane after it skidded.


PATRICK FOYE, EXEC. DIR. PORT AUTHORITY OF NEW YORK & NEW JERSEY: Runway 22 is a 7,000 foot runway. The plane ended up in the arrester bed at the end of the runway. Destroyed about 80 arrester bed blocks, and it's currently in the grass of the runway.


BERMAN: No word yet on the cause. Governor Pence spoke to emergency crews on the runway. And he quickly tweeted, "So thankful everyone on our plane is safe. Grateful for our first responders and the concern and prayers of so many. Back on the trail tomorrow."

ROMANS: Governor Pence also spoke on the phone with Donald Trump, just before Trump took the stage for a rally in Northern Ohio.

CNN's Sara Murray has that latest on that.

SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Good morning John and Christine. Well, everybody knows the last two weeks of a presidential campaign are particularly stressful.

Mike Pence had a very harrowing evening on Thursday night. That's because his campaign plane skidded off the runway at LaGuardia airport. Now even though everyone was fine. The press onboard the candidate, it was still the talk of the evening and Donald Trump even discussed it at his campaign event in Ohio.


DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I just spoke to our future Vice President. And he's OK. Do you know he was in a big accident with a plane? The plane skidded off the runway and was pretty close to grave, grave danger. But I just spoke to Mike Pence and he's fine. Got out. Everybody's fine. Everybody's fine.


MURRAY: Now despite the sad pack with Mike Pence's campaign plane, both Donald Trump and his running mate still have a patched schedule set for Friday. Pence, is expected to get a new plane and be back out there in Pennsylvania as well as North Carolina.

Donald Trump is headed to Iowa, New Hampshire and Maine. Back to you guys.

BERMAN: I will say, you know, having flown on about campaign planes before and sometimes you do fly in conditions you might not fly on. Otherwise, you are making a lot of landings to a lot of takeoffs there. Never skidded off the runway before but I think it would be pretty heroic to the people on board.

All right, also overnight. Donald Trump providing a new aggressive take on the infamous "Access Hollywood" tape where he bragged he could grab women's genitals and get away with it because he is famous, asked about it by Bill O'Reilly. He didn't really deny or deflect, but he suggests that he might sue.


TRUMP: The microphone was not supposed to be on. Not that I make that as an excuse for myself, but certainly it was an illegal act that was NBC. It was not supposed to be on.

BILL O'REILLY, THE O'REILLY FACTOR: You think it was illegal what they did putting that tape out?

TRUMP: Oh, absolutely. No, that was a private locker, you know, that was a private dressing room. Yeah, that was certainly ...

O'REILLY: Are you going to take any action after the election about NBC?

TRUMP: Well, you'll see. You'll see.


ROMANS: The Trump campaign is denying reports that it's trying to suppress minority voter turnout. Bloomberg Businessweek is quoting an unnamed Senior Trump campaign official saying, we have three major voter suppression operations under way. Trump spokesman Jason Miller tells CNN that the unanimous quote came from someone who "Had no idea what they were talking about." Miller says to the contrary Trump is running to be president of all Americans.

[04:05:03] BERMAN: This is something that the First Lady Michelle Obama addressed head on in North Carolina, she campaign with Hillary Clinton for the first time and the former first lady was more than happy to have the current first lady's help.


HILLARY CLINTON, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Seriously, is there anyone more inspiring than Michelle Obama? Let's be real. As our first African-American first lady, she has faced pressures I never did.


BERMAN: CNN's Jeff Zeleny, he was at that event. He has the latest.

JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: John and Christine, Hillary Clinton heading back to Iowa today. Returning to the state that she first won in those Iowa caucuses so many months ago.

Now she is trailing Donald Trump ever so slightly. But through early voting there, they're trying to get more Democrats out to campaign for her. She also is receiving the seal of approval from Michelle Obama, appearing with her side-by-side for the first time during this campaign.

Michelle Obama, one first lady to another first lady, told voters why they should pay attention and vote in this race.


MICHELLE OBAMA, U.S. FIRST LADY: Here is why I want to get real. If Hillary doesn't win this election, that will be on us. It will be because we did not stand with her. It will be because we did not vote for her. And that is exactly what her opponent is hoping will happen. That's the strategy, to make this election so dirty and ugly that we don't want any part of it.


ZELENY: Now, with 11 days to go in this election, Hillary Clinton after Iowa today, she's going to return to Florida for another weekend campaign swing there. They are trying to make sure that all paths to 270 for Donald Trump are blocked. She clearly has the advantage now, but they want to word off complacency and word off being too confident, John and Christine.

ROMANS: All right Jeff, thank you for that. New campaign finance numbers are out and it shows the two candidates in 30 different financial positions heading into the final days of this race.

Donald Trump has now donated a total of $56.1 million of his own money to his campaign, but from October 1 through October 19th, he only added $30,000 to that tally. He has repeatedly said he will spend up worth of a $100 million. But he -- we won't know for sure until after the election when the next campaign finance report is released.

BERMAN: He's a long way off from $100 million. And sometimes he said he has spent in other times, he says he will, but the fact is it's nowhere near right now.

ROMANS: Trump also trails Hillary Clinton in so called cash-on-hand. He has nearly $16 million in the bank. Clinton has almost four times that amount in cash. Look at the contributions for this entire election cycle. Clinton now topping $500 million since the start of her campaign. Trump is a must $200 million.

BERMAN: All right, Marco Rubio fighting for his political life in Florida. So how will the Trump campaign affect his future, the board of Senator is speaking out ahead.


[04:12:00] ROMANS: Donald Trump still a problem for Marco Rubio months after Rubio dropped out of the Republican race. The Florida Senator now locked in a tight re-election race. While he officially backs Trump, Rubio is not eager to answer questions about his ones bitter primary rival.

As CNN's Manu Raju found out.

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: Good morning John and Christine. Now Marco Rubio really in a bind over Donald Trump, remember that vicious presidential primary where the two engaged and personal nasty attacks for weeks on end. But now Marco Rubio of course, supporting Donald Trump for president, why? Because Rubio is running for re-election in a tight race and he needs Trump's legions of supporters here on the state. But he also deeds Donald Trump to do well in the state. He also does not want to recant his past criticism because a lot of voters simply are put off by Donald Trump. So he's walking this very fine line which is very evident for my exchange with Marco Rubio yesterday.


RAJU: How confident are you that Donald Trump would be a good commander of chief and keep this country safe? Do you think ...

MARCO RUBIO, (R) FLORIDA: Well, I have many concerns about Hillary Clinton, now that she was the secretary of state and the policies that she supported have led to chaos and disaster around the world. Quite frankly, I don't trust Hillary Clinton with the intelligence information.

And Mr. President certain to handle a lot of intelligence information.

RAJU: But will Donald Trump keep the country safe?

RUBIO: Again, the military is what keeps us safe. And we have to rebuild our military and she as a supporter of the defense custom and sequester that would be damaging to our country.


RAJU: Now, Democrat sensing they could have an opportunity here to beat Marco Rubio as he injecting a last minute infusion of cash to help Democrat Patrick Murphy. That's Marco Rubio's opponent. Murphy has been sailing for some time in the race. But some polls have him down by as little as 2 points. So Democrats think maybe there's a chance to knock off a potential threat another threat possibly against Hillary Clinton come 2020 if they were to put in a lot of money here in the last minute. But guys, still very difficult to beat Marco Rubio, the stake is so expensive and Democrats have a lot of other targets to take back the senate majority. John and Christine.

BERMAN: All right Manu Raju, thanks so much. A different senate race there was a wow moment in a Senate debate in Illinois overnight.

Republican senator Mark Kirk seemed to mock or at least question the heritage of his Democratic challenger Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth. Watch this.


TAMMY DUCKWORTH, (D) ILLINOIS SENATE CANDIDATE: My family has served this nation in uniform going back to the revolution. I'm a daughter of the American Revolution I bleed for this nation. But I still want to be there in the Senate when the drums of war sound, because people are quick to sound the drums of war. And I want to be there to say, "This is what it costs. This is what you're asking us to do." And if that's the case, I'll go families like mine are the ones that believe birth. But let's make sure the American people understand what we're engaging him and hold our allies accountable, because we can't do it all.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator Kirk, 30 seconds for rebate.

MARK KIRK, U.S SENATOR: I've forgotten that your parents came all away from Thailand to serve George Washington.


BERMAN: So Duckworth was born in Thailand, her mother is a Chinese descend, but her father is a marine veteran who traces his heritage back to the revolution. And Duckworth herself is army war vet who lost her legs and partial use of an arm in Iraq. And was awarded the Purple Heart, it was extraordinary.

[04:15:15] ROMANS: Yeah. There are lots of words to describe that moment.

All right, the feds say a former NSA contractor stole the names of numerous U.S. secret agents putting their lives and national security at risk. Let the judge decides whether to keep him behind bars, details next on "Early Start."


[04:20:03] BERMAN: All right. New this morning, the battle to liberate Mosul growing bloodier, officials say nearly 900 ISIS militants have been killed in the first 11 days of this mission and a few thousand that remain are now kidnapping civilians to use as human shields as they retreat to the center of the city ready to fight the advancing coalition forces.

CNN's Michael Holmes is monitoring the effects from the frontline there in Mosul, but a lot of posturing -- oh he's in Erbil, I should say.

There is a lot of posturing and positioning Michael it seems to advance now to the city center.

MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: And still some fighting to be done. John, that's right. And yeah, there's 900 dead ISIS fighters, the interesting thing is -- and not surprisingly we're not getting casualty figures from the Kurdish forces nor the Iraqi forces although they are taking casualties, the numbers we just don't know, but this has been a fierce fight at times. We ourselves have seen wounded fighters being brought back from the frontlines.

So it's not a one-way street that's for sure. And we did hear this morning from an Iraqi government official of a town about 25 kilometers south of Mosul that has been retaken by Iraqi forces. And the interesting thing there is that some 5,000 to 6,000 civilians were freed during that operation. It's a place called Shura. And those people are now being taken to IDP camps to be processed of course, the fear always that the ISIS fighters have tried to blend in with those civilians.

The other town we mentioned to you I think yesterday Hammam al Alil which is just a little north of Shura, that's surrounded by Iraqi forces and that's the place with foreign fighters inside, some of the better fighters that ISIS has Hetchins, Tunisians, Borakins and so on. 90 percent surrounded. We are told an assault will begin in the hours ahead, that to about 20 kilometers south of Mosul.

Now, what we do know that Iraqi counterterrorism forces are within eyesight of Mosul. And to the north you've got Peshmerga fighters within a coupe of kilometers. So what they're trying to do is to bring everyone up closer to Mosul. And make it a more uniform surrounding before they can go in inside the city itself.

Obviously intelligence is coming out because there was some direct strikes yesterday in particular on three houses there that were housed by 20 or so ISIS militants who were actual experts in anti-tank and anti-aircraft weaponry. They were taken out according to locals. We're hearing a lot of movement of ISIS fighters around the city. And we know dozens of car bombs are been pre-positioned in readiness for the assault. They've had two years to prepare ISIS and those preparations going into effect, John.

BERMAN: You know, the hard part still to come. Michael Holmes, for us there in Embil, thanks so much, Michael.

ROMANS: A federal judge today expected to hear new arguments on why a former NSA contractor who allegedly spilled the names of numerous covert U.S. agents, why he should be released from jail. Prosecutor say, the steps by Harold Martin endangers the lives of the agents, risks exposure of American intelligence.

Last Friday, a judge found Martin post a flight risk, detained him without bail. Martin's lawyers are pushing for house arrest and no internet access.

BERMAN: Police in riot gear clash with protesters over construction of the Dakota oil pipeline. At least 117 demonstrators calling themselves water protectors were arrested after setting up a camp and a tent and T.P.s to block the pipeline's path. They claim the land being used for the pipeline rightfully belong to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. Two protesters were taken into custody and charged with firing shots near police officers.

Chaos in the Oregon courtroom after the acquittal of the Bundy brothers and five of their cohorts, the ranchers and their arm psychics occupied a federal wildlife refuge for 41 days in February. After handing down not guilty verdicts and judge released all of the defendants except Amman and Ryan Bundy, they face federal charges in Nevada and their defense attorney claims he was tased by U.S. Marshals after demanding his clients be mediately released.

ROMANS: Two of the most famous names in gymnastics. Bela and Martha Karolyi are named in a sex abuse lawsuit brought by a former member of the U.S. national team. The alleged victims claimed -- alleged victim rather claimed she was sexually assaulted by a former USA gymnastic doctor Larry Nasser, and that the Karolyi is "Turn the blind eyes of the abuse." So civil suit, accused the couple of creating a toxic environment at their Texas training facility that allowed the abuse to occur.

BERMAN: All right. A game 71 years in the making. Tonight, the World Series resumes, game three in Chicago. This is the first World Series game to be played at Wrigley field since 1945. So they had a long time to get ready for it. It's all tied up at 1 game at piece.

Now, sort of the great story of this World Series. Club started Kyle Schwarber. He will not be able to play in the outfield, so just be a pinch hitter. His name was heard all year along. He played like two games in the beginning of the season. Didn't come back until the World Series while his knee healed, but he cannot play the outfield. Because he can't move well enough, so he's just going to hit.

[04:25:10] ROMANS: Wow. "Oh My Gosh". What time is the game today do you know?

BERMAN: I assume it would be 8:00. Just late enough, so the kids can't watch it. Need to attract new fans in the game.

ROMANS: All right, tense moments this morning for Mike Pence, last night rather on a rain-soaked runway. The plane carrying the V.P. nominee and reporters skidding off a runway on LaGuardia. Hear what happened from the CNN producer who was on the plane when "Early Start" continues.


BERMAN: Breaking news. The NTSB is investigating the near disaster involving the plane carrying Mike Pence. This happened in New York overnight.

ROMANS: Donald Trump talks retaliation. He said he could take legal action over the "Access Hollywood" tape that threw his campaign off track.

BERMAN: And Hillary Clinton. She's got a lot of campaign cash. Fresh off the trail with Michelle Obama. What is next for this campaign as it continues to deal with Wikileaks.

[04:30:09] Welcome back to "Early Start" everyone I'm John Berman.

ROMANS: And I'm Christine Romans. It is 30 minutes past the hour this Friday morning. Breaking news, Mike Pence is OK, this morning.