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Early Start with John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin

Judge Grants Trump "Special Master" to Review Mar-a-Lago Materials; UK's Boris Johnson Formally Resigns, Liz Truss to Replace Him; Police Search for 2nd Suspect in Massacre That Left 10 Dead. Aired 5-5:30a ET

Aired September 06, 2022 - 05:00   ET



POLO SANDOVAL, CNN ANCHOR: Hey, welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. It is Tuesday, September 6th. Hopefully you had a wonderful Labor Day weekend. I'm Polo Sandoval in for Christine and Laura.

Let's get straight to your EARLY START.

The Justice Department considering whether to appeal a ruling by a Trump appointed federal judge that grants the former president's request for a third party review of any documents that the FBI seized from Mar-a-Lago last month. The judge's order also temporarily stopping the department from using the documents to further its investigation of Trump until the review is complete.

I want to go to more from CNN's Sara Murray in Washington this morning.


SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A judge granting Donald Trump's request for a special master to review the materials the FBI seized from the extraordinary search at Mar-a-Lago.

Judge Aileen Cannon writing, because of Trump's role as a former president, the stigma associated with the seizure is in a league of its own. A future indictment based to any degree on property that ought to be returned would result in reputational harm of a decidedly different order of magnitude. A major victory for Trump, a third party attorney outside of government will be tasked with sifting through thousands of documents to identify personal items and materials protected by attorney/client or executive privilege.

JENNIFER RODGERS, FORMER ASSISTANT U.S. ATTORNEY: While it does delay things and slow it down, which, of course, is bad for DOJ and their case, I think at the end of the day we're not going to see a lot of documents pulled by the special master.

MURRAY: The judge pointing out that some of seized materials include taxes and accounting information. The ruling allowing U.S. intelligence agencies to continue their national security damage assessment, but halting the Justice Department criminal review of its Mar-a-Lago home.

RENATO MARIOTTI, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: I don't think this has a massive impact on the investigation in the long run. If I was the prosecutor working on this case, I'd say let's trudge forward with the special master, get through it as quickly as we can so we can move on.

MURRAY: Even as the judge acknowledged there was not any evidence of a callous disregard for Trump's constitutional rights, adding that Trump ultimately may not be entitled to much of the seized property or prevail on his anticipated claims of privilege. That inquiry remains for another day.

Meantime, Trump speaking at his first rally since the FBI searched his resort last month.

DONALD TRUMP, FORMER PRESIDENT: They rifled through the first lady's closet drawers and everything else, and even did a deep and ugly search of the room of my 16-year-old son. The FBI and the Justice Department have become vicious monsters, controlled by radical left scoundrels.

MURRAY: The former president slamming law enforcement as high ranking Republicans offered explanations for why Trump may have been hoarding top secret information.

REP. MICHAEL MCCAUL (R-TX): I have lived in the classified world most of my professional career. I personally wouldn't do that but I'm not the president of the United States.

MURRAY: And allies like South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): What I've tried to do is state the obvious.

MURRAY: Still cleaning up comments warning of riots in the streets if prosecutors charged the former president.

GRAHAM: We had a standard set when it came to Hillary Clinton. If he does what she did with classified information and he gets prosecuted and she didn't, it would create a problem.


MURRAY (on camera): Now, when it comes to the special master, the Justice Department previously asked the judge to rule in a way they could appeal her decision down the road. The Justice Department now is saying they are examining her ruling and considering what their next steps are.

Sara Murray, CNN, Washington.

SANDOVAL: All right. Let's bring in now, Julius Kim. He is a criminal defense attorney and a former district attorney in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin.

Julius, good morning to you. You're up earlier than I was this morning. Thank you for this valuable insight.

You know, we heard from a former federal prosecutor in Sara's piece just now saying that this may not have much of an impact. But I'm curious, what is your reaction? Do you agree? Do you think this is actually a win for the former president?


I think it is kind of a win for the former president. This is a criminal investigation and usually criminal investigations defendants or suspects don't get to control what's going on. But in this situation, this judge ruled in former President Trump's favor in this request for a special master but in the end is it going to make that big of a difference? I'm not sure.

But I think having a special master appointed in this case at this point in time is a safeguard. It's to make sure that the process is fair, or appears fair, so in the end I don't think anything substantive is going to change with regard to this investigation.

SANDOVAL: And, Julius, a lot of attention goes back to the Department of Justice here and what their next move will be. Are you expecting them to appeal the ruling that we saw?


KIM: I'm not sure what they're going to do. I'd be surprise if they went ahead and appealed the judge's ruling on the special master, because it seems it's not an issue that's going to really amount to much. From a strategic standpoint, the Department of Justice might at this point want to just move forward. Get the special master to review the documents and do it as expeditiously as possible so that they can continue with their investigation.

SANDOVAL: And the question is what they do when we approach the midterms, right, would they go quiet? Now, the judge, as we know, he -- the one that granted the request for a special master, was nominated by Trump in May of 2020, so people are probably wondering if he's getting any special treatment here.

So, do you think this is the kind of response or ruling that any other litigant that is not the former president would have received?

KIM: I think it's a fair concern on people's part to wonder, former President Trump appointed this judge and now, he's getting a special master is there favoritism going on? But I think the reality is he is getting special treatment but not because of the judge on the case but because of the fact that it's involving the investigation of a former president, whether it's Donald Trump or Barack Obama or whoever.

So, I think that this decision came out of abundance of caution and not necessarily because Donald Trump appointed this particular judge.

SANDOVAL: Criminal defense attorney, Julius Kim, our thanks to you. Thanks for getting up with us this morning. Have a great rest of your day.

KIM: Have a great day.

SANDOVAL: All right. Right now, tens of millions of Americans facing the threat of catastrophic flooding.

Plus, the incoming British prime minister about to meet with the queen.

And he's on his way out. Moments ago, Boris Johnson's parting comments on this final day at 10 Downing.


BORIS JOHNSON, OUTGOING BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Together, we have laid foundations that will stand the test of time.




SANDOVAL: Welcome back.

Boris Johnson about to formally step down as British prime minister, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss will be taking the reins starting today. Both of them meeting with the queen later this morning.

CNN's Max Foster has more of the new leader but first want to go to Nada Bashir.

Nada, I want to get to you first to just talk a little bit about what we heard from the outgoing prime minister. What did we hear and perhaps what did he not actually touch on?

NADA BASHIR, CNN REPORTER: Look, Polo, this is a long anticipated farewell from the outgoing Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the second time we've seen him standing before that lectern just the last few months. We've had that recognition speech from the prime minister back in July.

And today, he touched on much of the same topics. He went through the legacy that he will leave behind at 10 Downing Street. We heard previously the prime minister saying he had regrets over the political programs he would not be seeing through as a result of this early stepping down on his part.

But, of course, there are areas that he wants to remember as moments of pride really during his premiership. He outlined those, namely getting Brexit done. Taking back laws in the united kingdom from the European union, something he long championed was able to achieve.

And, of course, the COVID-19 pandemic, the vaccine rollout was a key success under the British Prime minister as well as the supply of weapons and arms to the Ukrainian armed forces over the course of the war in Ukraine. But as you mentioned there, there were key things he didn't mention. Of course, the scandals that have embroiled the British government over the last few months. There was no mention of that, but some mention of the issues and crises that the country faces.

Take a listen.


JOHNSON: Above all, thanks to you, the British people, to the voters for giving me the chance to serve all of you who worked so tirelessly together to beat COVID, to put us where we are today.

Together, we have laid foundations that will stand the test of time, whether by taking back control of our laws or putting in vital new infrastructure -- great solid masonry on which we will continue to build together, paving the path of prosperity now and for future generations. And I will be supporting Liz Truss and the new government every step of the way.


BASHIR: Now there are significant challenges which face the new Prime Minister Liz Truss, challenges which Boris Johnson himself and his cabinet have resided over, criticism over his failure to deal with the rising cost of living crisis, soaring energy prices, those are issues that remain and will persist over the course of this new government. The prime minister for now is on his way to Scotland where he will be received by the queen. It's there, as per custom, in the United Kingdom, he will tender his resignation to the queen and recommend Liz Truss take the position of prime minister.

SANDOVAL: Nada, stand by as we go to Max Foster.

As we see the pictures from the castle where later this morning, we are getting ready for Liz Truss to meet with the queen. If you can tell us about the meeting when Liz Truss has an opportunity to meet with the queen.

MAX FOSTER, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Yeah. So as Nada says, Boris Johnson first resigns, effectively. He doesn't have to do that, but it's a formality. It would normally happen in London but for the first time in the queen's reign it's happening in Scotland because she's unable to travel and come to London, effectively.

It's an ancient process called the kissing of hands. So Liz Truss will shake hands, it's not literally kissing of hands and she's invited to form a government.


A prime minister isn't necessarily a position in itself, but it's the prime member of the cabinet who represents the queen, which will be interesting, Polo, because Liz Truss spent the early part of her career campaigning to get rid of the monarchy and effectively getting rid of the monarchy and effectively getting the queen fired. She's now a committed monarchist and that for many speaks to Liz Truss' career really where she's flip flopped on a lot of issues. But at the moment, people are saying that might be an advantage because she will reflect changing times and not doggedly stick to a script. She'd be more flexible.

Once she's been appointed prime minister, she'll head back here to London and give a speech in Downing Street. And that is really keenly watched because she's been speaking very general terms throughout this campaign and not giving any specifics. And we're expecting some specifics and the primary issue on her agenda is the economic crisis she's inherited from Boris Johnson.

Energy bills are escalating. And she's going to come up with some sort of package, we think, to try to help people on that, which would be on the size of the furlough package during the last pandemic, so huge challenge ahead for her. And she's going to flesh out how she's going to deal with it.

SANDOVAL: It is a massive list, Max, that you're breaking down there. No doubt she'll be hitting the ground running. Thank you so much, Max Foster, there live, outside of parliament. The new prime minister, she will certainly be taking on as Max just laid, some massive challenges from a cost of living crisis to a potential recession.

CNN's Bianna Nobilo taking a closer look.


BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Britain's new prime minister is an ambitious political chameleon.

LIZ TRUSS, INCOMING BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I know that we will deliver. We will deliver. We will deliver.

NOBILO: Liz Truss' unlikely ascendance complete. Her leadership campaign got off to a shaky start, she couldn't even find the door. Notoriously gaffe-prone.

TRUSS: We import two thirds of our cheese -- that is a disgrace.

NOBILO: Tactless about British's closest allies.

MODERATOR: President Macron, friend or foe?

TRUSS: The jury is out.

NOBILO: And mocked by Russia's foreign minister

SERGEY LAVROV, RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER (through translator): It seems like we listen but don't hear.

NOBILO: The former foreign secretary was widely considered to be less informed and less willing to be scrutinized than her rival, Rishi Sunak, but that didn't stop her because she wasn't appealing to the wider British public. One of two candidates selected by Tory lawmakers, Truss was ultimately chosen by less than 1 percent of the British electorate, a slither of the conservative base -- older, whiter, and more right-wing than the average voter.

She played a blinder.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Enough already.

NOBILO: Promising a hard line on immigration and tax cuts to a party drifting further to the right. Channeling their hero, Margaret Thatcher, even dressing like her.

Like half of Britain's the prime minister's, she studied here at Oxford University, but back then she was a liberal Democrat activist in favor of legalizing cannabis and abolishing the monarchy.

TRUSS: Abolish them, we've had enough!

NOBILO: Now, she is the darling of the right-wing of Britain's conservatives, the pro-monarchy party of law and order, quite the 180. And when it comes to Britain's biggest political question of the last decade, Brexit, she supported remaining in the E.U., only to emerge as a born again Brexiteer, and the U-turns continued.

Before graduating 1996 with a degree in politics, philosophy, and economics, Liz Truss campaigned alongside Neil Fawcett for two years.

NEIL FAWCETT, LIBERAL DEMOCRAT COUNCILOR & FORMER TRUSS COLLEAGUE: She always seemed to be very ambitious, and sometimes you thought her main aim was to impress people, but she was always playing to the gallery. She would say what needed to be said to win the popularity among some people she was in front of at the time.

NOBILO: Do you feel like she does have substance?

FAWCETT: I couldn't tell you what she actually believes.

NOBILO: Her supporters, though, see flexibility, independence of mind, and a boldness.

CHRIS SKIDMORE, BRITISH CONSERVATIVE MP: She doesn't take no for an answer, she said, and I've seen that as a minister myself. In private, you know, she can be direct, but she is also very warm and I think that is indeed her to many MPs.


NOBILO: Truss inherits a nightmare, war in Europe, abiding cost of living crisis, the country brace for a winter of potential blackouts and fuel poverty. Britain's desperately hoping she'll leverage that ambition and adaptability to rise to the challenge.

Bianca Nobilo, CNN, London.


SANDOVAL: An uneasy morning in Uvalde, Texas, where children will be going back to school for the first time since 19 classmates were killed.

One suspect still on the lose after a deadly mass stabbing in Canada.



SANDOVAL: This morning, flood watches in effect right now for over 50 million people. This just hours after flash flooding bogged down holiday traffic. Look at these scenes. Cars being swamped here on I-95 in providence.

Meteorologist Gene Norman joining us this morning.

Gene, like 115, 116 out west yesterday. Is there going to be any relief at all?

GENE NORMAN, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Unfortunately, no, Polo. As far as the rain in the East, we have at least two more days of that. Folks in Boston, D.C. already waking up to light to moderate rain showers it's about to get started in New York and Philly.

And as you mentioned, we have this flood watch from Boston back down to Washington impacting about 55 million people.


Now, it doesn't mean that every spot that's colored green is going to have flooding but it means these places have the highest potential because the rain is not moving quickly. And it's going to build up. We already had two to four inches on the ground in a lot of places. We had another two to four indicated by these yellow splotches. That will likely lead to rain.

And the system producing this, well, it's taking its time, may not get out until Thursday morning that means you won't see the sun until Thursday afternoon. Meanwhile, out west, we talked about the heat, it's still in force. Heat advisories, heat warnings with the temperatures soaring past 100 degrees.

Triple digits in Sacramento they set their September record of 114 yesterday. They could break that today at 115.

And when it's all said and done, we may have over 150 temperature records set or tied between now and Friday. Yep, this juiced up heat wave because of climate change isn't showing any signs of relief.

SANDOVAL: Gene, it was just a few weeks ago we had records of our own here in New York. Thank you for that breakdown. Stay cool out there. Thank you.

Canadian authorities are searching still for the second suspect wanted for a deadly stabbing spree in Saskatchewan that left 10 people dead and 18 injured across multiple sites on an indigenous reserve. Officials saying that the suspects are two brothers, one was found dead on Monday. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RHONDA BLACKMORE, ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER, ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE: At 11:30 a.m., a deceased male was located. At 1:17 p.m. today, it was confirmed by Saskatchewan RCMP forensic investigation section that the deceased is Damien Sanderson.


SANDOVAL: Police say they believe his brother, Myles Sanderson, who has a lengthy criminal record. He is still on the run. He is considered armed and dangerous.

Emotions are running high today in Uvalde, Texas as students return to school for the first time since the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School. You recall, 19 children and two teachers lost their lives. Across the district, new security measures are in place, including steel fences, cameras, additional law enforcement officers.

But one Uvalde parent telling CNN it's still not enough to make his kids feel safe today.


ADAM MARTINEZ, PARENT OF UVALDE SCHOOL STUDENTS: One of the questions that the families have is, the DPS workers that are going to be there, are those the same ones that were at the school that day and we can't get an answer. They won't give us an answer whether it's going to be the same people, the same school resource officers that were there, they're going to be there on campus, too.


SANDOVAL: No students or staff will be returning to Robb elementary, at least not that campus. Students who went there are being absorbed into other schools.

Well, Ben Stiller now banned in Russia and he's not alone.

Also, President Biden again signaling out to MAGA Republicans.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The extreme MAGA Republicans in Congress have chosen to go backwards full of anger, violence, hate and division.