Return to Transcripts main page

First Move with Julia Chatterley

The Trump Trial: Democracy Or Conspiracy?; Donald Trump Hush Money Trial; IDF Intelligence Chief Resigns; U.S. Campus Crisis Spreads; Columbia University In Crisis; TikTok Fights Threat Of A Ban; TikTok Bill Advances; China Flooding Emergency; Zelenskyy Welcomes Aid Bill; Trump's New Windfall?; Characterizing Trump; First Witness David Pecker; Trump On Trial; Judge To Hold Hearing On Trump's Gag Order Tuesday; Caitlyn Clark To Sign $28M Deal With Nike. Aired 6-7p ET

Aired April 22, 2024 - 18:00   ET



JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: "Tortured Poets Department" got nearly 300 million streams on Spotify alone. Before we sign off this programming note, CNN

will have special coverage again tomorrow for another big day in the New York Hush Money Coverup trial against Donald Trump. Former tabloid

publisher David Pecker will be back on the stand. CNN's special coverage begins just before court resumes at 11:00 a.m. Our coverage continues now.

PAULA NEWTON, CNN ANCHOR: It's 6:00 a.m. in Shanghai, 8:00 a.m. in Sydney, and 6:00 p.m. right here in New York. I'm Paula Newton in for Julia

Chatterley. And wherever you are in the world, this is your "First Move."

And a very warm welcome to "First Move." Here's what you need to know. Nothing wrong with trying to influence an election. Trump's defense lawyer

says it's called democracy. The prosecution claims it's a criminal conspiracy. We'll wrap up the fifth day of the Donald Trump hush money


Columbia University in crisis. The school moves to virtual classes amid simmering tensions. Student protests spread to Yale University, where pro-

Palestinian supporters are arrested. President Biden condemns antisemitic attacks.

And TikTok strikes back. The Chinese-owned video sharing app talks action ahead of moves to ban it. That conversation is coming up.

But first, the historic criminal trial against a former U.S. president. In Monday's opening statements, prosecutors said Donald Trump tried to

illegally influence the 2016 presidential election by preventing damaging stories about him from becoming public. Now, they told jurors, in part,

"This case is about a criminal conspiracy and a cover-up. It was election fraud, pure and simple."

But the defense team tried to discredit the point, saying, "Trump fought back to protect his family, his reputation, and his brand. This is not a

crime. There's nothing wrong with trying to influence an election. It's called democracy."

And speaking outside the courtroom, the former president said the case is keeping him off the campaign trail.


DONALD TRUMP, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT AND REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is what took me off and takes me off the campaign trail. Because I

should be in Georgia now. I should be in Florida now. I should be in a lot of different places right now campaigning. And I'm sitting here. And this

will go on for a long time. It's very unfair.


NEWTON: Following all of it is Jessica Schneider who is here with us now. Jessica, there was only a short session. It was actually an abbreviated

session this morning. But my goodness was it eventful. They got through a lot. Take us through what happened, especially these crucial opening


JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, only a few hours, Paula, but like you said, a very eventful day one despite that. We got through

opening statements from both sides and also about half hour of the first witness testimony from David Pecker.

Now, what prosecutors have to prove in this case, and we're expecting about a four to six-week trial, they have to prove that Trump orchestrated this

scheme, to create these false business records, all to cover-up the hush money payments made to two women and a New York City doorman, all of that

in an effort to influence or corrupt the 2016 presidential election.

So, prosecutors went first, and in their opening, they previewed what will likely be this key upcoming testimony of Michael Cohen. Of course, he's

Trump's former attorney, self-described fixer. Prosecutors said that even though Cohen was convicted for lying to Congress, they say there will be

other documents and corroborating evidence to really back up Cohen's testimony that he paid off Stormy Daniels more than $100,000 about her

alleged affair with Trump and then was reimbursed for it.

Trump's side, however, they were very blunt about their case. They stuck to, really, what you'll hear as their repeated argument, that Trump had

nothing to do with the invoices, nothing to do with the ledgers or the checks to Michael Cohen, that he was really hands off, even though he

signed several of those checks himself, and they'll really continue hammer -- to hammer that Trump had no involvement with this repayment to Cohen or

the recording of these transactions, and that really strikes to the heart of this case.

And then, at the end of the few hours this morning, we got the first witness, David Pecker. He was the chairman, the president of AMI. It ran

the National Enquirer along with other publications. And Pecker did start to talk about how magazines regularly paid for stories. His testimony was

very brief this morning, but we are expecting to hear a lot more from him, potentially most of the day tomorrow about how he paid off Playboy model

Karen McDougal and a New York City doorman who claimed Trump had a love child from a separate affair. That story turned out to be false.

But Pecker could really shed some additional light on this practice of catch and kill, Paula, where he and Cohen were really on the lookout for

bad stories about Trump and looking to pay people off to not talk about them in the lead up to the 2016 election. So, we're just getting started

here on day one, a lot more testimony tomorrow as well. Paula.


NEWTON: Yes, and obviously top of mind for the judge has to be the integrity of the jury, making sure they can get to this testimony and this

evidence impartially, but also without fear or disruption. How did the first day of that jury holding together go?

SCHNEIDER: There's still some lingering fear from this jury. You know, we started off the morning with concern from one juror in particular, juror

number nine, really concerned about the media attention in this case because it is nonstop. You know, the juror ended up meeting with the judge

privately in the judge's chambers, and in the end, pretty quickly actually, the jury decided -- the juror decided to remain on the jury.

But you know, this type of concern is really bubbled up in the past week. We saw those two jurors last week asked to be dismissed after too much of

their personal and identifying information was published in the media. They were ultimately dismissed.

But you know, we do have those six alternate jurors here. If other issues arise with the main 12 jurors, you know, there need to be at least 12

jurors at the conclusion of this case to deliberate or else there would be a mistrial.

But, Paula, really what we saw in court is that, for the most part, these jurors are alert. They're very engaged. They had note taking material. They

took notes throughout the openings and testimony so far. But, you know, it was just a short day today. We only went until 12:30 p.m. And tomorrow,

we're actually looking at a pretty short day, too, with about three hours of scheduled testimony. Paula.

NEWTON: Yes, what is clear, though, is that the judge is no nonsense. He is going to get to this and get to it very quickly. Jessica, thanks so much.

Really appreciate it.

We now want to bring in CNN Contributor John Dean, who was the White House counsel. For President Richard Nixon. Good to see you, and I want to get

your assessment up front.


NEWTON: How is it going, as far as you're concerned, this day one when they're actually listening to testimony?

DEAN: Well, they've gotten it launched and they've done it, I think, effectively and they've held their jury together. As you noted, the safety

concerns appear to be under control at the moment. This is a state case rather than a federal case where you have U.S. marshals everywhere. You

have really court police and New York City police sort of protecting and watching after this case. But I think that's going to be an ongoing concern

given the media focus on this jury.

NEWTON: What did you make of the opening arguments from both sides here? I mean, the task obviously is to try and frame these arguments persuasively

based on facts and the law, right? Not the fact that the defendant is a former president.

DEAN: Exactly. I thought the government was very concise and did a 45- minute overview of the case. They told a story that the jury, I'm sure, found interesting. And then, after telling it broadly from 30,000 feet,

look down at some of the areas more specifically, that could be some of the soft spots in their case. Primarily focusing on a key witness, Michael

Cohen, who is a controversial witness as well.

The government, however, found themselves in an interesting situation when the defendants put on their opening statement, where they went into areas

that had already been ruled by the judge to be out of bounds. And so, they objected to, which you don't like to do in an opening statement, but they

objected to several areas that the Trump attorney went into in his opening statement, and that objection was sustained by the judge.

It was primarily had to do with Michael Cohen and characterizations of whether or not Trump had -- was implying attorney advice had guided him

through this, when indeed that was not a legitimate defense and had been ruled out. And the other area was whether Michael Cohen had lied and in

what form.

So, it was somewhat technical, but the jury probably reacted to that and wondered why they were talking about things the judge didn't want in.

NEWTON: Yes, interesting. In fact, that even if those objections are sustained, the jury is listening to all of that, Michael Cohen, of course,

being the fixer.

I want to ask you, at this point, that in terms of the jury, right, they've got a lot of background noise to deal with. I mean, are you concerned that

all of those impacts, those interruptions perhaps to the case, the delays all the media attention, that this could become more difficult in the next

few weeks, even though right now, the jury looks to be intact.


DEAN: I'm not concerned that it's going to interrupt the trial. I think that the jury that is locked in now after they -- one woman who did call in

and met with the judge and as well as the defense this morning to talk about her concerns about the media coverage, and I'm sure implicitly her

safety and what would happen if anything arose and how to deal with it. I think that they bleep that hurdle.

They have six alternates that they can put on if a juror, for some reason, health or fear or whatever doesn't feel like it reached a fair verdict. But

I think we're going and I think it's going to go pretty quickly.

NEWTON: OK. And we will leave it there for now. John Dean, as always, thanks so much for joining us. Appreciate it.

And turning to the Israel-Hamas war now, the IDF announcing the first senior resignation over the October 7th Hamas attacks. Now, the head of the

Israeli military intelligence is stepping down after acknowledging a failure to prevent the deadliest day in the country's history.

Now, as the war rages on, Gaza's civil defense agency is reporting a horrifying scene on the grounds of the Nasser Medical Complex in Khan

Younis. It says nearly 300 bodies have been recovered, and that's just so far from a mass grave.

Now, in the United States, meantime, tensions over the war in Gaza are so high at one Ivy League university that students were told to attend class

remotely. Protesters have set up camp at Columbia University in New York, calling out the school to cut financial ties with Israel.

In the last week, you'll remember more than 100 people were arrested. Pro- Palestinian protesters say they were peaceful, but the White House has condemned reports of antisemitism and the school's president has been urged

to take immediate action.

I want you to listen now to Robert Kraft. He is a Columbia grad graduate, but you'll also remember that he is a major donor to the school. Listen to

what he had to say.


ROBERT KRAFT, ALUMNUS, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY: I just can't believe in New York City at Columbia University, Jewish students are afraid to go to

classes. It's just in the United States of America in 2024, it's amazing to me and horrible.


NEWTON: We want to bring in Shimon Prokupecz, who's outside Columbia University for us. And, Shimon, I don't know if you can hear me. This has

obviously been simmering now for days. I know you've been on the scene for a while, and many people, including the governor of New York, echoing the

sentiment from Mr. Kraft there and saying that that kind of intimidation cannot be tolerated.

At this hour, as I know the protests are still ongoing, where do things stand?

SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN SENIOR CRIME AND JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Yes. So, at this hour, what's happening here is most of the clashes, most of the drama,

right, like, it's been going on outside of the school.

Last week, we saw certainly what this college decided when they asked the NYPD to come in and remove protesters, that was certainly an escalation.

But things have calmed down since then. You know, they've now allowed the students to remain in the encampment. They have allowed students to use

their tents again, to sleep there overnight, and that's what's been going on.

A lot of the controversy and then a lot of the clashes have been happening outside, and it's been a relatively small group that's been clashing with

people who live here on the Upper West Side, students leaving the campus, and that's what's kind of drawing a lot of the attention.

Certainly, there are things that are going on inside that are concerning and troubling, and that's why we're hearing this reaction from all these

elected officials, including the mayor of the City of New York, Eric Adams, who is really concerned about what's happening here and says how the city

can't tolerate this. Take a listen.


ERIC ADAMS, MAYOR OF NEW YORK CITY: There is no place for hate in this city. I don't care if it's antisemitism, Islamophobia, anti-Sikhism, we

don't have a place for that. And I don't want to be, and I won't be the mayor, where you have to take off your hijab, your yarmulke, or your turban

when you enter a place of higher education, or use our transportation system, or walk our streets.


PROKUPECZ: And so, the NYPD, the mayor says, will remain outside the -- outside school until and if they're needed. If the university, again,

decides that they want to bring the NYPD in to clear the students, to remove the tents, they will do that. But right now, the university has not

asked the NYPD to come in and they remain on the outside.

One of the big things here that we all need to keep an eye on is graduation. That's on May 15th. That's just in a couple of weeks, and that

the graduation ceremony is right in the area where this encampment is. So, it's going to be really interesting to see what happens as we draw closer

to that date.


NEWTON: Yes, it seems so many school officials there struggling to really de-escalate the situation. Shimon Prokupecz for us on the scene, really

appreciate it.

OK. Coming up for us, much more on Monday's testimony in the Trump hush money trial.

Plus, this, the TikTok countdown clock. A bill that could force the sale of the social media app in the United States is getting closer to President

Biden's desk, the very latest on the legal battle ahead.

And Southern China battered by days of torrential rains, at least 11 people have been reported missing. The updated forecast for the region after the



NEWTON: And welcome back to "First Move." Monday momentum on Wall Street tops today's "Money Move." U.S. stocks bouncing back from recent losses,

with the S&P 500 closing higher for the first time in six sessions. It fell some 3 percent last week.

Now, meantime, gains in Europe as well, with London's FTSE 100 closing at a record high for the first time in over a year. It wasn't all green arrows,

though. Tesla shares fell more than 3 percent ahead of its quarterly earnings report due out Tuesday. Now, Tesla also announcing new price cuts

in China to help compete with domestic EV brands there. It is lowering car prices in Germany, too.

In Asia, stocks in Japan, South Korea, and Hong Kong all rose about 1 percent or more. The Shanghai Composite, as you see there, pulled back just

a little bit as the Chinese central bank left interest rates unchanged.

So, a bill that could lead to the forced sale of TikTok in the United States is up for a vote in the Senate after its passage in the House over

the weekend. This new version of the bill gives TikTok owner ByteDance as much as a year to find a buyer for its U.S. operations, or this is key

here, face the possible removal from U.S. app stores.

Now, TikTok executive told employees in a memo on Monday that the company will fight the legislation in court if President Joe Biden signs it into

law, as he is expected to do.

Now, the challenges for TikTok do not end there. E.U. officials are now threatening TikTok with hefty fines after the launch of a new spinoff

called TikTok Light that they say contains it addictive features.


Lance Ulanoff joins me now. He is editor at large at TechRadar. Good to see you and have you weigh in on this story. You know, it seems like a TikTok

ban could be signed into law very soon. What many are wondering, though, is what happens next in terms of the fight in court. That can go on for a very

long time, right?

LANCE ULANOFF, EDITOR AT LARGE, TECHRADAR: Yes, yes. This -- it's not like flipping a switch. But also, we should note that this bill is different

than the last one we saw, and that they're giving TikTok more time to figure this out to. They've giving them a year, right, from the moment that

Biden signs it. Because it's attached to that funding bill for Ukraine, it is very likely it will get signed pretty quickly. And then all the wheels

will be in motion.

I mean, TikTok is ready to fight. They'll go hard and call on, you know -- they'll say it's a free speech issue. But, even so, say, it takes a year to

possibly find someone who wants to buy it. And then maybe if the White House sees that there's some progress, they can even give them like 90-day

extension. So, between the court fight and the extensions, it's unlikely anything's going to happen very quickly. But, you know, year passes fast

and the pressure will be on.

NEWTON: When you say the pressure will be on, they do not seem to want to engage in a sale at all in terms of the case that they have before court.

It does rest on free speech, right?

ULANOFF: Yes. I mean, I think that's their biggest chance here. You know, there's no -- it's not -- it's incontrovertible that China owns ByteDance,

and that the way it works when a company is in China is that anytime the CCP could say, let's see your data, let's see your stuff. Now, what TikTok

is done in the U.S. has completely cleaved those two things apart. They say we operate separately. We are not the same.

All U.S. employees, all your data is in the U.S. But they're still owned fundamentally by ByteDance. And this is the problem. And remember, the

algorithm, the thing that says, oh, what going to push you to flip to the next thing? You know, that is probably written in part in China. And if

it's written in part in China, then the question is, how much control do they have?

And this is the big concern. This is the big security concern for people in the U.S. where they say, are they manipulating what we see and pushing them

one way or the other, especially as we head into a U.S. presidential election?

But as I heard a couple of senators say over the weekend, nothing's going to happen in time to have any kind of meaningful impact on this

presidential election. So, you know, people will continue to enjoy and use TikTok for the foreseeable future.

NEWTON: Yes, and it is that algorithm that is so valuable to this company. You know, in recent months, we've seen TikTok enlist influencers, right?

What kind of an impact have they had? Because TikTok has said to them explicitly, and they've had ad campaigns about this as well, tell the U.S.

government that you want to keep your TikTok.

ULANOFF: Yes, I mean, if you live inside the bubble of TikTok, I mean, you're just like -- you know, it's all, this is what we love. This is what

we do. I mean, it is -- you know, it's 170 million Americans using the app and there's, you know, millions of businesses being run out right now. And

You know, TikTok knows that it can leverage people whose livelihoods are living and working and playing through TikTok.

So, they've done that. You know, they've done it in subtle ways and then in less subtle ways where they've convinced some TikTokers to make, like,

people who make really creative stuff. So, they're spreading the word. But here's the thing, they're spreading the word to likeminded people. I mean,

everybody on TikTok is like, we love this thing, and so that's not the problem. But it doesn't matter because the legislators, you know, the

congressmen, the senators, and the president of the United States are all in agreement that we don't want China to own it. So, I don't really know

how to get around that.

NEWTON: You know, I only have three seconds left, but the point is the Biden campaign is on TikTok. Is there not a way to make everyone happy here

in a sale?

ULANOFF: Well, there's -- I honestly believe there's no way to make China happy in this. I mean, they really don't want to sell this, and I think

it's a point of pride for them. That's why they don't want to do it.

But, yes, of course, Biden is on it. And as soon as he writes the -- you know, signs off on that ban, they'll probably have to pull his campaign off

of there, which is really probably not a good move.

NEWTON: Yes, so interesting as we continue to see this saga continue. Lance, thanks so much. Really appreciate it.

ULANOFF: Pleasure.

NEWTON: So, after days of heavy rain, floods are now sweeping through Southern China, the hardest hit area, the province of Guangdong, an

economic powerhouse home to 127 million people.

Meantime, a series of earthquakes have hit the east coast of Taiwan just a short while ago. Chad Myers, thankfully, is tracking all of this for us in

the CNN Weather Center.

I mean, Chad, obviously, of a concern whenever we hear that, given what's happened in Taiwan in the last few weeks.

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Sure. Absolutely. And there have been so many aftershocks today alone. It was kind of a lull for quite some time

after the original 7.4 earthquake a couple of weeks ago. But now, we've had like four or five, above five. And then, we're -- now, we're pushing --

almost pushing six and 6.1 just in the past couple of hours. So, kind of an alarming little rate there going up.


But let's start here in China where the rainfall has been so heavy. You had the pictures there of the flooding. Some spots have already picked up more

than 350 millimeters of rain just from the initial burst of rain that happened over the weekend, and there's more coming, they're so much more

coming. The American model and the European model, both at a time over the next 10 days, putting out a half a meter more of rainfall. More than 500

millimeters could be on top of what we're seeing here in these already flooding areas.

Not only that, this rain is going to sneak across into Taiwan, and now some models are putting more than 250 millimeters of rain on the west side of

Taiwan. Now, the earthquakes are on the east side of Taiwan, not near and toward the north in Taipei, but I've seen pictures on the internet and

people are feeling it up there for sure, especially that 6.1 that they had more in the form of rainfall. Just more day after day.

We're almost into what we call the plum rains, kind of the monsoon season we have here. A little bit early, almost a month earlier than normal. But

if the waters are warmer than normal, then, you know, I mean, we could be already pushing the springtime here. But that purple area just north of

Hong Kong, that's 250 to 500 just in the next hour. That's 250 to 500.

This area here, right here, in Taiwan, that's 250 to 500 just in the next five days. And it's not stopping. It's not stopping at five. It's not even

stopping at 10. There are many, many more days to go. Look at Hong Kong. Thunderstorms in this automated forecast for the next seven days straight.

So, now, let's turn our attention over to Taiwan, the east side here of Taiwan had that major 7.4 earthquake. But we've had 30 aftershocks of four

or greater in the past 24 hours, and we've had big ones like a 6.1.

Now, we expected a 6.4, but one of them, we certainly didn't expect that many 5.0s or 4.0s, and it's still happening at this hour. So, this is going

to be -- and now, they're waking up a very sleepless night for the people there in Taiwan. I'm sure they were all going, again, because we had like

four 5.0s, four five, four six, five and a 5.0 within nine minutes of each other, all separate quakes, not all one rumbling. So, yes, a couple of

very, very rough days here for Southern China and also for Taiwan proper. Paula.

NEWTON: Yes. And given how unsettling that big earthquake was, you can't blame them for being a rattled figuratively and literally. Chad Myers for

us really appreciate it.

MYERS: You're welcome.

NEWTON: Now, we'll have more "First Move" right after a quick break.



NEWTON: And a warm welcome back to "First Move" with a look at more international headlines this hour.

Three people have been arrested in Germany accused of spying for China. Authorities searched the homes and workplaces of two men and a woman who

are all German citizens. They're accused of gathering information on German military technology. Two men have also been charged in the U.K. with

similar offenses.

Officials in South Korea and Japan report a new missile launch by North Korea Monday. South Korea's joint chiefs of staff said that Pyongyang fired

multiple short-range missiles. The projectiles were fired off North Korea's East Coast.

U.S. President Joe Biden announced new funding for solar energy at an Earth Day event in Virginia, and he warned natural disasters will only get worse

due to human caused climate change and said the damage from extreme weather is already taking a huge economic toll.


JOE BIDEN, U.S. PRESIDENT: And over the last two years, natural disasters and extreme weather in America have caused $270 billion, $270 billion in

damages. And the impacts we're seeing decades in the making because of inaction are only going to get worse, more frequent, ferocious and costly.


NEWTON: The U.S. military aid package for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan goes before the Senate Tuesday for a preliminary vote.

Now, the $95 billion legislation was passed by the House over the weekend over months of political infighting between U.S. Republicans. But there's

still renewed calls for House Speaker Mike Johnson to resign for pushing the plan to a vote in Ukraine.

Meantime, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked U.S. lawmakers and others. And said the weapons need to reach the frontlines as quickly as possible.

The Kremlin, meanwhile, has a serious warning for Western allies, as CNN's Fred Pleitgen reports.


FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Russian troops advancing in a heavy firefight in Eastern Ukraine. This

video from Russian military TV claiming to show Ukrainian soldiers having to surrender. Ukraine's howitzer is often unable to support their frontline

units, severely lacking 155-millimeter artillery shells. But now, they hope that will change.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We'll defend ourselves and counterattack.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Kremlin controlled media seething after the House passed the Ukraine aid bill, while praising Republican Representative

Marjorie Taylor Greene for trying to derail it.

OLGA SKABEEVA, RUSSIAN TV ANCHOR (through translator): Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, who "New York Post" already dressed in a Ushanka

hat with a star, officially putting her in the ranks of Kremlin agents, called Speaker Johnson a Democrat elected by Ukraine.

Greene also said that Johnson betrayed not only Republicans, but the whole of the USA. Nonetheless, the U.S. military aid will be bigger this year

compared to the past years, and of course, there is nothing good in that.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Russia's foreign minister going even further, threatening nuclear confrontation.

SERGEY LAVROV, RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER (through translator): Westerners are teetering dangerously on the brink of a direct military clash between

nuclear powers, fraught with catastrophic consequences. Particularly that it's the Troika of Western nuclear states that are among key sponsors of

the criminal Kyiv regime.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Ukraine is in desperate need of lots of artillery ammo, Kyiv says, badly outgunned by Vladimir Putin's forces.

But also, air defense missiles, with Russia drastically escalating its missile and drone campaign against Ukraine's cities and power plants.

Ukraine's president saying he's grateful for the aid, but the weapons need to come fast.


VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY, UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): The time between political decisions and inflicting real defeats on the enemy at the

front, between the approval of the aid package and providing the strength to our guys, this should be reduced to a minimum.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): And the Ukrainians hope U.S. aid will arrive quickly and change the tune on the battlefield, allowing Kyiv's forces to stop

further Russian advances.

Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Kyiv.


NEWTON: Back to our top story now. Monday was an historic day, of course, in the U.S. judicial system and American politics. The first time the

prosecutors have ever presented a criminal case against a former U.S. president.

Manhattan prosecutors and the Trump defense both presented their opening arguments to the jury in the Trump hush money case, and the first witness,

took the stand. I want to bring in our Alice Stewart, a CNN political commentator and Republican strategist.

Really good to see you, Alice. And a reminder, you and I have been parsing Trump politics now for nearly nine years, and yet, neither of us would have

ever envisioned anything like this historic day. I want you to help us be clear on the political impact. It's true, right, even if convicted, Donald

Trump could still run, he could still win, and he could still serve his full term as president?

ALICE STEWART, U.S. REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST AND CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes, he absolutely could. And you're right, Paula, who would have ever

thought we would be having this conversation when we first started talking many years ago.

But look, legally, if he is convicted, which is an if, yes, he could certainly run for president, and he could certainly serve as president. But

the question is politically. And I think there's three different camps to look at.

One is Republicans, his base. Look, they're looking at this trial. They're not going to change their mind. They think, as he does, that this is

weaponization of the Justice Department. They look at this as trying to silence President Biden's biggest opponent, and they believe with him that

he is a victim of the justice system. And they would much rather have his policies in the White House, then Biden's policies in the White House.

Then you have the Democrats who look at this certainly as an opportunity to point out that Donald Trump has done some things wrong and you do the

crime, you do the time as, as they say, and there are consequences for his actions. And they certainly don't want him in the White House and are going

to do everything they can to stand against him.

Paula, as you know, we're now in a general election. Those votes are not what's going to decide this election. It is the independent voters in

America and the late deciders and how they're looking at this trial. They're looking at this, in some regards, in a passing fancy in terms,

they're looking simply from the standpoint of this is a charge right now, and he's not been convicted.

The question is, they don't see this as anything to doom his campaign at this point. But if he's convicted, it could certainly change the

perspective and change their mind and change the game. So, that's what they're looking at.

The other component of this, Paula, as you know, if he's acquitted, if he is found not guilty in this case, that could raise a lot of questions

about, well, maybe he is a victim. Maybe he is being unduly targeted. So, that does raise a lot of concerns.

But, Paula, I travel across this country. I was in Nashville, Tennessee over the weekend, and I can tell you, voters here in America are looking at

what's impacting them. They're looking at the economy. They're looking at the border. They're looking at safety. They're looking at this important

national security issues. Certainly, what you just spoke about with regard to Ukraine, and they're seeing whose policies help me better in that area.

And the polls right now show that Donald Trump is ahead of Joe Biden in many of the battleground states and that bodes well for Trump. They're not

focused on this trial.

So, it really boils down to what is going to be front of mind for these independent voters as we head to the big election in November.

NEWTON: And given that, given everything that you've said, if he is found not guilty, do you think it might actually give him some added momentum in

the campaign?

STEWART: That's what they're banking on. And they're looking at this from the standpoint, if he's acquitted, if they found -- find him not guilty of

this, and look, it needs just one person on the jury to hang things up and acquit him in this case, that would, in their mind, in the Trump campaign

and Republican National Committee's messaging standpoint, would play into the notion that he is a victim. The Justice Department is out to get Donald

Trump. He is being targeted because he is an opponent of Joe Biden.


The problem with that notion and that theory, Paula, as you know, each and every one of these four cases that he's charged in, they're completely

different. They're different facts. There's different evidence. There's different information. And each of them should be looked at separately. But

how Donald Trump and many of the Republicans are looking at this from the standpoint, this is one big issue of the Justice Department and as they

view, what liberal prosecutors in many states, going after him because they see him as a threat.

Myself as a rational Republican, I look at these, each and every one of them separately and distinctly, and there -- are some of them are more

troubling than others. But at the end of the day, Republicans, again. legal issues aside, they're looking at this from a policy standpoint, and they

would rather see Trump's policies for the next four years than Biden's policies.

NEWTON: Yes, and you make such a good point, though, that is the movable middle, right, that is going to be important in the months to come. Alice

Stewart for us, thanks so much. Really appreciate it.

STEWART: Thank you.

NEWTON: Now, still ahead for us, Donald Trump's finances could receive a further boost on Tuesday. The former U.S. president looks likely to receive

millions of new Truth Social shares. Details of Trump's potential new windfall. That's next.


NEWTON: Donald Trump's publicly traded media firm has seen its share price cut in half since it began trading on Wall Street last month. Do not,

however, shed a tear for the former president, who still has paper profits in the company's stock worth billions of dollars.

Trump is also on track to receive another 36 million new shares in Trump Media if the stock price stays above a key target of $17.50 a share at the

end of trade Tuesday. Trump Media ended Monday session, in the meantime, you can see it there, more than 2 percent down. But hey, well above that

key level.

Now, I asked Axios senior media reporter Sara Fischer about the outlook for Trump's media stock. Take a listen.


SARA FISCHER, CNN MEDIA ANALYST: Donald Trump is what we say locked up for six months, meaning, he cannot access these shares. He cannot sell them

until September. And the big question is, what will this stock be worth in September?


You've seen since it went public last month, it's just gone continuously down. There has been a small little bump in the past few days. But we don't

expect that this stock is going to materially grow. Why? Well, for one, unlike most public companies that are social media, they don't plan on

revealing any user metrics or numbers that could get investors excited.

Right now, this stock is just trading on any sort of optimism around Donald Trump's brand. Now, right now, when he's in court, I think there's a lot of

tension around the president. So, maybe that'll help boost the stock price. But if you're starting to see other social media players, you know, also

perform very well, meaning that they're bringing in record revenues, that could also bolster this stock.

So, the answer is, we'll see where it ends in September, but Donald Trump can only get as rich as this stock performs. And for now, this is sort of a

meme stock still.

NEWTON: Yes, when we talk about a meme stock, it doesn't have much to show for itself in terms of growth. It is essentially a startup, but even in

that definition, it doesn't have any really strong revenue targets that it's making or anything like that. What do you see happening to the stock?

Because the people who run it still continue to say it can be turned into a big media company.

FISCHER: Well, the difference between this and other social media companies when they first went public, if you think about Meta or Snap, is that they

had hundreds of millions of users. And so, investors were optimistic that they could one day convert that huge will engage user base into revenue.

Truth Social, not only will they not tell us how many users they have, but all third-party proxy metrics would suggest that they have barely any

users, right? Maybe a few million. And so, if retail investors -- remember, a lot of the people who are buying into this stock are not big

institutional banks. They're everyday people trading off of Donald Trump's brand.

If retail investors one day can get past the fact that this stock is not performing alongside its financial reality, then they're going to pull

away. If they continue to ride the coattails of Donald Trump's popularity, they'll continue to stay engaged.

But we've seen historically with every meme stock, whether it was Bed Bath & Beyond or GameStop, that the momentum does typically fall. Eventually

retail investors get out because they've recognized they're going to lose money.


NEWTON: OK. So, he's a husband, he's a father, and he's a person just like you and me. Donald Trump's attorney, Todd Blanche, paints the former

president as just a regular guy. After the break, how he argues the 34 criminal counts count for nothing.


NEWTON: Updating you now on our top story, a day of high drama in New York as jurors here opening arguments in Donald Trump's hush money trial. Now,

prosecutors argued that Trump directed his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, to pay the adult film star Stormy Daniels to keep quiet about an alleged

affair before the 2016 election. They say Trump disguised the $130,000 payment as income to Cohen.


The defense said Trump is innocent and was not involved in the scheme. They also said there's nothing wrong with trying to influence an election. After

that, prosecutors called the first witness, David Pecker, a former tabloid executive.

Pecker and Donald Trump have a personal and professional relationship going back decades now. The former publisher is now a central figure in the hush

money case, as Brian Todd explains.


BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): 72-year-old David Pecker told the court today that when he was president and CEO of American Media

Incorporated, which published the National Enquirer, he "had the final say on which stories would get published," and that, "On the celebrity side of

the magazine industry, at least on the tabloid side, we used checkbook journalism," and he said they paid for stories.

That practice was just part of what prosecutors say were plans between Pecker, Donald Trump, and Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen, to pay

women who alleged they'd had affairs with Trump to keep quiet.

GENE ROSSI, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: Why Mr. Pecker's important is he can talk about the plan to execute the scheme. And this is also important, this

election interference case doesn't involve just Stormy Daniels, it involves Karen McDougal.

TODD (voice-over): Karen McDougal is a former Playboy model who the "New Yorker" magazine first reported had an affair with Trump. Prosecutors say

Pecker and the Inquirer were part of a scheme to pay McDougal and Stormy Daniels for their stories about their alleged affairs with Trump and then

to bury those stories.

DAVID FOLKENFLIK, MEDIA CORRESPONDENT, NPR: It was called catch and kill as an approach. Stories and episodes that might be incredibly embarrassing or

damaging to Donald Trump as he ran for president might be acquired by the National Enquirer and never see the light of day.

TODD (voice-over): Trump has denied having affairs with both McDougal and Daniels. Prosecutors have given David Pecker immunity in exchange for his

testimony. His former company, American Media, has signed a non-prosecution agreement with prosecutors.

Born in the Bronx, Pecker didn't start his career with the tabloids, but was gradually drawn to that world.

FOLKENFLIK: I believe he's an accountant, he had worked in book publishing, but he saw an opportunity, he thought, in tabloid news with American Media

to really capitalize on America's thirst for gossip and celebrity focus.

TODD (voice-over): One former employee of Pecker's has told CNN, Pecker is known for taking care of his friends, and that Donald Trump was definitely

in that category.

STU ZAKIM, FORMER SENIOR VP OF COMMUNICATIONS, AMERICAN MEDIA INC.: Pecker and Trump have been friends since magazines really ruled the roost in New

York City in the '90s. You got to remember, David Pecker launched George Magazine with JFK Jr.

So, at that time, when Trump was on the rise as a real estate mogul in New York City, logically, he went after a media owner who's going to help

advance his career. The two hit it off.


NEWTON: And a reminder that David Pecker, of course, is expected back on the witness stand on Tuesday. Jessica Schneider joins me now with a

preview. That's going to be the testimony coming up, but there are even some rulings, right, that we're expected to hear from the judge before we

even get to that testimony.

JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's all going to start at 9:30 tomorrow morning. That will be before the jury arrives. And what's

going to happen is that the judge here, Judge Mechan, he'll hear arguments from prosecutors. And prosecutors are saying that Trump should be fined for

violating the gag order multiple times. Because, of course, the judge in this case instituted that gag order against everyone involved, including

Trump, saying they can't speak out or disparage any possible witnesses or the court staff or even family members of the prosecutors or the judge.

And prosecutors are right now pointing to at least 10 different times, social media posts in particular, where they say Trump violated this gag

order. And what they're asking from the judge is asking the judge to fine Trump $1,000 for every time that he violated this gag order. And

potentially, lay out the parameters for when Trump could be face jail time because, of course, if you violate a court order, that could ultimately be

the punishment, jail time.

So, this hearing begins at 9:30 tomorrow morning. It should be very lively. The hearing will last until about 11:00 a.m., that's when the jury will

come in. They'll then hear three hours of scheduled testimony. And most, if not all of that, will be from David Pecker, where, of course, he'll detail

more of what prosecutors say was this scheme to pay off people who had damaging stories about Trump in the days before the 2016 election.

You know, we'll really -- from David Pecker, we'll likely hear more about what was a meeting that prosecutors say happened in the summer of 2015. It

was right after Trump announced his candidacy. David Pecker met Trump and Michael Cohen and then they allegedly hatched this plan to like catch and

kill stories, which would be, you know, bring in the stories and pay people off to not go public with their stories and they never publish the damaging

stories about Donald Trump.


So, there will be a lot going on in court tomorrow, Paula. It will start at 9:30 with that hearing on the gag order. Then we'll get some testimony

until about 2:00 p.m. from David Pecker. Paula.

NEWTON: Yes. And the judge seems determined to get through a lot of this testimony as quickly as possible. Jessica Schneider for us. Thank you so

much. Really appreciate it.

And finally, for us, a basketball sensation. Caitlin Clark is reportedly set to sign an eight-year endorsement deal with Nike worth up to $28

million. Now, the deal is expected to include a signature Nike shoe.

Now, as a WNBA rookie -- pardon me, remind you that she's set to earn nearly $77,000 from the Indiana Fever. By comparison, the top NBA draft

pick will make more than $10 million a year. So, many people thankful that Nike will be making up for some of that disparity.

That's it for us. This wraps up our show. I want to thank you for watching "First Move." Julia will be back here tomorrow.