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Laura Coates Live

Biden, Obama, Clinton Fundraising Event; Biden Fundraiser In NYC Nets A Record $25M; "No Labels" On The Ballot; RFK Jr. Hits Biden For Skipping NYPD Officer's Wake; Trump Calls For "Law And Order"; Trump's New Push To Get GA Election Case Tossed Out; Trump Seeks To Dismiss Georgia Charges; Truth Social's Worth; $5 Million For Caitlin Clark To Play Against Men; Ice Cube Offers Caitlin Clark $5M; Beyonce's New Album Drop; Beyonce's New Album "Cowboy Carter". Aired 11-12a ET

Aired March 28, 2024 - 23:00   ET




LAURA COATES, CNN ANCHOR: We've got brand new information on the big Biden, Obama, Clinton fundraiser, and what it all means for the campaign.

And $5 million for Caitlin Clark to play against the guys. Should you take the deal? Tonight on LAURA COATES LIVE.

Well, they certainly rolled out the red carpet, the celebrities and the cash for President Biden in New York City. We saw three presidents with -- who were united with one mission, raise as much money as possible to help defeat Donald Trump.

The venue, Radio City Music Hall. The crowd, oh, it was sold out. The stars, well, let's just say, there were a lot of them from Stephen Colbert to Mindy Kaling to Ben Platt to Lizzo.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Radio City Music Hall. We got three presidents in the building tonight.


COATES: We're told Clinton and Obama ended the fundraiser by putting on aviators and doing their best impressions of Joe Biden.

In all the Biden campaign says they raised $25 million. That's in one night. The campaign tells us that's the biggest single fundraiser for them so far this year. And well, more than Trump raised in the entire month of February. Trump, he's apparently unbothered, saying, you ain't seen nothing yet. Of course, his campaign is hoping to beat that number at a Florida event just coming up next week. We'll see.

But to me, it's not really about how much they raise, it's why so much money is needed. The reality is that this is a razor-tight race. Our CNN poll of polls has it, 47 percent Trump, 44 percent Biden. And if it wasn't so close, would tonight's fundraiser have even happened?

And the fact that it's such a tight race is precisely maybe why President Obama is helping out. It's why Obama is "worried," according to an aide. And it's why you're going to see a lot more of him as this campaign unfolds.

Trump's allies are suggesting that this fundraiser and the celebrities that came out to support shows one thing, that Biden is an elitist who's out of touch with the everyday person. Now, who do you think they think is the man of the people? Donald Trump. Because while Biden was, they think, hobnobbing with Tinseltown, Trump was attending a wake for a fallen NYPD officer.


GREG GUTFELD, CO-HOST OF "THE FIVE": I don't think you've ever seen a more perfect example of the sparkling obscenely aloof elites in your life.


COATES: But let's flash back. It's just a moment. Why would this be so triggering for say Trump? You know, there was a time -- it wasn't so long ago that Donald Trump, the celebrity, would have loved to have been in the room tonight, to mingle with the so-called Hollywood elite that he once crossed paths with.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Samantha, a cosmopolitan and Donald Trump, you just don't get more New York than that.

TRUMP: Wow. Hot one, isn't it? Let me have a nutty buddy.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, my god, you're Donald Trump. Look at this, right here on the street.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's the Donald. Oh, my god.

MACAULAY CULKIN, ACTOR: Excuse me. Where the lobby?

TRUMP: Down the hall and to the left.

CULKIN: Thanks.


COATES: Remember these, when he would get support from Hollywood? Forget the music scene by the way too. The support that he wanted after he came down the escalator or wanted to play their music at his rallies and they said no or the endorsements he sought out or for them to sing at his inauguration. But that was then and frankly, this is now.

Well, leading off our discussion tonight is Democratic Strategist Matt Bennett and Former Bush Campaign Adviser Mark McKinnon. Matt, let me begin with you here because this was quite the lineup of people Biden, Obama, Clinton, the whole host of Hollywood stars all on stage tonight. Reports of Obama and Clinton even razzing Biden and donning aviator sunglasses. Good fun. And they also raised a whole lot of money in the process. But is it enough to either elevate Biden or give him a lifeline?


MATT BENNETT, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST, FORMER DEPUTY ASSISTANT TO PRESIDENT CLINTON AND CO-FOUNDER OF THIRD WAY: I think it's necessary, but not sufficient. Money is the lifeblood of politics. Unfortunately, you got to have a lot of it. And tonight, raised a lot of it. I mean, he raised more tonight than Trump raised in all of February.

As (INAUDIBLE) was saying earlier tonight, Trump is now a bible salesman apparently, and he would've to sell 415,000 bibles to match what Biden raised tonight. So, this was a very good event for Joe Biden. And it showed that we are a party that is a big tent, that has a very diverse set of points of view in it, but we are united behind Joe Biden. There is no question about that. And Bill Clinton and Barack Obama made that point very clearly.

COATES: Well, Mark, that tent included protestors who were pro- Palestinians who were protesting the war in Gaza. There was many disruptions. What does that say to you about what Biden is facing?

MARK MCKINNON, FORMER BUSH CAMPAIGN MEDIA ADVISER, FORMER MCCAIN PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN ADVISER, AND CO-FOUNDER OF NO LABELS: Well, he faces a lot of challenges and that's just one among them. But I mean, it's a good night for Biden. Although, I would say I think that money is far less important in presidential campaigns in terms of what the money actually does. It's more important in terms of what it represents in terms of enthusiasm for Biden.

Listen, I'm the guy that spent three quarters of the budget in a presidential campaign and thought we wasted most of it. So, the dollars are not that significant. Both of these candidates are going to have plenty of money to run. The more important point is that people are enthusiastic and they're giving money to Biden campaign. They're not enthusiastic -- they're not giving money to Trump.

And by the way, Biden has both presidents -- previous presidents with him. You haven't seen George Bush out with Donald Trump ever, or the last nominee, Mitt Romney either.

COATES: I mean, Matt, does the dollars translate to enthusiastic voters?

BENNETT: I think it is one metric that you can use. I mean, none of these are really going to tell you exactly how the voters going to act. The size of rallies is a -- you know, the number of campaign signs you see. These are things that people always point to and none of them are real. We won't know -- because this race is so close, as you point it out, won't know what any of this means until we get much closer to November.

But I do think because there's been a lot of coverage of the protesters, because there are real -- you know, there's real anger out there on both sides, I think a big unifying event like this is a big symbolic win for Biden. And it comes at a good moment for him, the State of Union was a big success, economic numbers are looking very strong. This kind of thing can really carry this momentum forward. So, I think it's helpful, if not just positive.

COATES: Mark, it matters who is enthusiastic, right? I mean, if you're talking about this fundraiser for Biden, talking about Hollywood stars, if you're talking about the donations coming through Trump, it -- there are people who are the -- he wants you to suggest are the everyday Americans who are not part of the establishment. Does that translate, you think, to getting him more support at a general?

MCKINNON: Well, listen, Biden doesn't have any trouble with the Hollywood community, their form and any -- the trouble he has is in middle America with white collar voters and voters of color. And you know, the coalition -- the former coalition of the ascendant is not ascended anymore. In fact, it's been descended.

So, listen, Matt knows what his Democratic colleagues know, which is this race is really, really close. Can't take anything for granted. They need every positive step that they can take every single day. This is a positive step to raise a lot of money, but the money doesn't mean anything in terms of celebrity support or Hollywood support, that can even be hurtful. The question is, how do you use that money and translate it into middle of America and the coalitions that Biden needs to get reelected?

COATES: Matt, how do you address the criticism that this fundraiser suggests that Democrats are elites and elitists?

BENNETT: This fundraiser suggests that every politician is elite and elitist. I mean, Donald Trump lives in Mar-a-Lago and, you know, his bathroom is made out of gold. So, like -- forgive me if I find that unpersuasive, but the fact is that large dollars come from rich people in politics. It has always been the case, no matter how populist you pretend to be, if you're going to run at a major level in American politics, you're going to need money from wealthy people.

There were a lot of people in Madison Square Garden tonight who were giving a lot less than the maximum, but look, let's face it, all fundraisers seem elitist, and that's just part of the game of politics, unfortunately.

COATES: I mean, Radio City Music Hall, no shabby place to have it, but a lot of the money is going to come in and translate, of course, to the actual voters.

Matt Bennett, thank you so much for joining us tonight.


Mark McKinnon, stick around. We've been hearing for months that voters do not want another Biden-Trump rematch in January. Reuters asked voters in a poll if they were tired of seeing the same candidates run for president, and more than two-thirds said, yes, they we're tired of it.

Numbers like this, of course, had fueled the possibility of third- party bids from groups like No Labels. The group says that it wants to appeal to more moderate voters and turn down the heated political rhetoric in this country. They've already secured ballot access in more than a dozen states. But here's the hang-up, they still don't have a candidate that's willing to run. They've been basically playing the ultimate guess who game.

For who will be the No Labels candidate, there were so many contestants, as you can imagine, but one by one, they all turned down the job. Bill Cassidy, Larry Hogan, Dean Phillips, Nikki Haley, David Petraeus, John Huntsman, Joe Manchin, Jeff Duncan, and Chris Christie, who just turned down the job yesterday.

Mark McKinnon, let's talk all about this right now. Since you were one of the original co-founders of the No Labels group, even though you've no longer have any affiliation with them. You just saw from our visual there of who's no longer there and all of the guess who's, they're not a part of it. No one's stepping up. Why?

MCKINNON: Great question. I mean, I want to just, you know, tip my hat to Joe Lieberman, who was the chairman of No Labels who passed this week, was just a giant of a human being and a great, hard, huge soul. And he helped chair the organization, and he just had a vision that many others did that helped start it and are part of it, which is that there's too much partisanship in the country. We want trying to heal the partisan breach and bring people together.

And hey, by the way, in greatest democracy in world, shouldn't we have more than two choices, especially in a situation where up to two- thirds or beyond are unhappy with having a couple of 80-year-olds as their nominees. If the system produces two 80-year-olds, maybe the systems needs some reform.

The problem is you can't just wake up in May of this year and decide you're going to do that. You have to pave the runway because the way the system is rigged for the parties, you have to spend, what No Labels have spent upwards of $50 million, just getting the ballot access in case somebody could step up and be an appropriate candidate.

Now, the thing that Joe Lieberman said from the very beginning, unequivocally, is that whatever they would do, they wanted to make certain -- the whole point of the exercise was to ensure that Donald Trump was not reelected.

And a long time -- a year ago, others like me said, well, what happens when we get to now and Joe Biden's down and maybe down by a lot to Trump? What's the plan B? So, that the idea was just to have an option.

Now, as you pointed out, there haven't been any obvious people stepping up, and that says a lot about the system. And I think that people are afraid of a reality, which that Chris Christie did. I mean, he tested it himself, and he determined that he could draw more votes away from Biden than he could from Trump. So, good for Chris Christie.

And -- but that's what the organization itself said, we're not going to do anything that would help Trump in any way. So, it may, in the end, turn out that there's no candidates. And by the way, I think that part of the reason for that is that was a lot of disinformation about No Label's objective, that they were people selling the notion that they weren't intentionally trying to help Trump, which clearly they never were.

Joe Lieberman is a biblical man of his word, and when he said, unequivocally again, that we're not going to do anything to helped Trump, I believed him and I'm certain that's going be the case going forward.

Although, I will say, there are some other options, Laura, that I talked to Lieberman about, which is that even if they don't have the unity ticket that they talked about running, there's some possibility. I mean, they can put No Labels candidates on in certain states that would draw votes. They could put popular Republicans on, say Paul Ryan in Wisconsin or something like that, or the former governor of North Carolina that was a No Labels co-chair and draw votes away from Trump. And in the end do what Joe Lieberman said --

COATES: Those are prospects --

MCKINNON: -- which is to --

COATES: Do you think those are actually possible candidates, though, who would do that?

MCKINNON: I don't think they've been asked, and I don't think it's been tested yet. I mean, they wanted to try the moonshot first, and it looks like that's running out of gas. And I'm just saying that there are some other options because they have ballot access in some of these states.

So, if they're true to the word of Joe Liebermann, which to do everything possible to ensure that Trump's not reelected, they could do that. They could run Republicans, popular Republicans in their home states, draw votes away from Trump, and help save the Republic.


COATES: Well, you know what they say, there is a perfect presidential candidate out there, but she doesn't want to run or he doesn't want to run, depending on who you ask. Mark McKinnon, thank you so much. We'll see.

MCKINNON: Kick it, thank you.

COATES: Well, RFK Jr. siding with Trump today, criticizing Biden for going to his fundraiser in New York and not going to a slain officer's wake.

Harry Dunn, who is a Capitol police officer, defending the Capitol on January 6th, tells us what he thinks, next.


ROBERT F. KENNEDY JR., INDEPENDENT PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't know what the thinking was in the Biden White House. I don't think it was a good judgment.




COATES: Donald Trump attending the wake today for slain cop Jonathan Diller. Diller was an NYPD officer who was shot under his bulletproof vest while conducting a traffic stop on Monday. The man who shot him was charged today with first degree murder. The suspect had been arrested at least 21 times before, according to police. He's also spent time in prison for first degree robbery and attempted murder.

Trump speaking at the funeral today. Take a listen.


DONALD TRUMP, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT AND U.S. REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We have to stop it. We have to get back to law and order. We have to do a lot of things differently because this is not working. This is happening too often. We've got to toughen it up. We've got to strengthen it up.


COATES: Joining me now, former U.S. Capitol Police officer who was at the Capitol on January 6th, Harry Dunn. He's also a Maryland congressional candidate.

Harry, so good to see you. Thank you for joining me this evening. I can't imagine what your reaction is that you see not only that an officer has been killed, but do you give any credit to Trump for having attended the wake?

HARRY DUNN, FORMER U.S. CAPITOL POLICE OFFICER AND (D), MARYLAND CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE: Laura, thanks for having me on. The only thing that goes through my mind right now is that poor officer and his family, and that's what this story should be about, first and foremost, and only about the officer.

A man lost his life defending his city, committing his life to public service, and that's what this story is about. Donald Trump makes everything about himself, and he does things for political gain, and he doesn't really have any sympathy for officer. Well, maybe he does, you know what.

But also, I will give him credit. He did say something that is problematic, and this career criminal has been arrested a couple dozen times and he was still out on the street and he killed a public servant of New York City, and that's the problem. That's what we need to talk about. That's what we need to focus on.

No, I don't give Donald Trump any credit for attending the wake because he did it all for himself. Donald Trump, still to this day, has not reached out to Mrs. Sitnik, the mother of fallen Capitol police officer Brian Sitnik who died after January 6th, the attack on the Capitol. He hasn't reached out to any of the 150 plus officers who were injured in the wake of January 6th. Back to Blue is only a convenient slogan when they -- it helps him out.

COATES: You know, you mentioned the events of January 6th. Trump, as you know, is the same person facing charges for his actions surrounding what happened on January 6th. He salutes the January 6th --

DUNN: Lack of action, Laura. Lack of actions.

COATES: Your words are more precise in that respect and those allegations, you are correct. He's also been saluting the January 6th anthem at his rallies. He calls those who've been jailed, as a result, hostages. How do people square that with his call as you say for back the blue or law and order? Can you?

DUNN: Yes. No, he also -- you know you can't square, it's Donald Trump talking. And you try to make sense out of anything that he says and you know what you're going to get. He plans to pardon the January -- people arrested and jailed on January 6th, many of those individuals, not outside of the ones who were just trespassing, but many were arrested and charged, convicted, tried and convicted for assaulting law enforcement officers.

So, the hypocrisy is strong with this one, but it has always been that way. And that's why, you know, when Donald Trump's mouth is moving you just know it's always something to benefit himself.

How can you, in one hand, support law enforcement, but then pledged to pardon individuals who attacked law enforcement? Because they did it in his name. That's how he can do it. So, loyalty is all that guy cares about and it's all about him.

COATES: That was --

DUNN: But the story is that --


DUNN: Sorry, yes, the story is that officer who lost his life and gave his -- dedicated his life to public service. It's not about Donald Trump. But -- and also, a time to talk about criminal justice reform about an individual who was able to be out on the street after being arrested dozens of times, still with felony, with -- oh, some of those felony convictions, too. So, that's problematic and that's one of the things what -- that when I'm elected to Congress that I look forward to addressing the criminal justice system and criminal justice reform that's needed.

COATES: Well, how do you plan to fix that? DUNN: Well, first of all, we have to acknowledge the problem. We don't even acknowledge it as a problem. People just talk about it for talking points. That's all they do.

We need to empower judges. We need to empower police officers. We need to empower prosecutors to be able to enforce laws that are on the book and not have to worry about some backlash that's out there.


These people, career criminals, like you said, they -- those individuals, they had their chances and we just -- we have to fix that. And it escapes the logic that this individual was still out on the street and able to take this man's life, to take away from the community of New York, which he pledged his life to public service. It baffles me, it makes me very angry, and there's no reason that should have happened.

COATES: He did leave behind a young baby as well and his wife. And just -- I know as a former officer, your heart breaks every time you hear about what takes place and how violent the work is and how you do truly as not only first responders, but you are the gatekeepers of so much. Harry Dunn, thank you so much.

DUNN: Thank you, Laura, for having me on. Have a good evening.

COATES: You too. I have a question for you all, what if you could say anything, true or false, whether it harmed people or not? Well, that's what Trump's lawyers are trying to argue, again by the way. Will it work this time?



COATES: Today, Donald Trump's lawyers argue to a judge that anything he says is protected speech. Now, imagine if I told you that whatever you say, true or false, there are no consequences, and especially if it has to do with politics. Well, that's what Trump's lawyers are asking a judge to believe.

Now, you know your Miranda rights. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. Well, unless you're Donald Trump. I mean, just listen to this.


STEVE SADOW, ATTORNEY FOR DONALD TRUMP: What President Trump said, speech-wise, or expressed either through his speech or conduct, which is still freedom of expression, because that's false in the eyes of the state, it's lost all protections are the First Amendment. Just the opposite. If anything, under the circumstances, it needs more protection.


COATES: Nope. Your ears are not deceiving you. Here's how prosecutors are responding.


DONALD WAKEFORD, CHIEF SENIOR DISTRICT ATTORNEY, FULTON COUNTY: It's not just that he lied over and over and over again as counsel for the defendant points out by listing all of the instances in the indictment, is that each of those was employed as part of criminal activity with criminal intentions.


COATES: Now, I want to get right to CNN Legal Analyst Elliot Williams. OK. Elliot, we know that speech does in fact have consequences. But their attorneys say it shouldn't, it should all be protected because it's all political.

ELLIOT WILLIAMS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR AND FORMER DEPUTY ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL: What's a little priming among friends? But, no, look, there is a gray area in which there is certain political speech that ought to be protected under the First Amendment. And there's probably some sphere where things that politicians say ought to be protected.

The problem is that if your statement is itself a crime or if your statement is itself an act in furtherance of a crime, it's not going to be protected. If I say to you -- if I -- if I'm in a speech, Laura, and I say, I'm going to kill you, Laura Coates. That's a crime. It's a threat. That itself can be punished. If I were to say in a speech, as a politician, hey, Laura Coates. Let's work together to subvert an election, that itself is an act in furtherance of a crime.

And so, this idea that simply by being a politician, one, is completely immune from any sort of prosecution is nonsense. Freedom of speech. Yes.

COATES: Look, I am from Minnesota, but don't ever point at me again. Don't try to kill me. You're just going to come off.

WILLIAMS: No doubt. No doubt. No doubt.

COATES: On that point, though, I'll tell you, this is -- this decision, though, part of the issue here has been, the First Amendment issue has been decided in a separate court. And it's interesting to talk about that in D.C., right, with Judge Tanya Chutkan, because although you are two separate entities, one state and one is federal, she is saying it ought to go to a jury to decide whether they believe you've proven your case, that it's a knowingly false statement.

WILLIAMS: Yes. And it's an important distinction. I'm glad you're asking that question. It's an important distinction that folks understand the difference between federal cases, state cases, and what matters. Now, Judge Tanya Chukan, as you pointed out, it's a federal court in Washington, D.C. That actually, believe it or not, even though it's a federal court, has no bearing on what happens in Atlanta. They don't -- it has no what's called presidential value. What she rules doesn't matter in Atlanta. That said, it's still persuasive. They are reading her opinion. They're relying on her judgment. And she's ruled on this already, and in effect, said, no, as a politician, simply by being a politician, you don't automatically get immune from prosecution simply by being in office. And so, that is certainly an opinion they're going to look to, and maybe even cite or rely on.

COATES: You know, the hearing wrapped today with no ruling. We didn't have an indication of when it was coming. What do you think are the next steps here? Because Fani Willis wasn't there, but she is promising the train is still coming for these defendants.

WILLIAMS: The train can still come for the defendants. I think no one should be alarmed that a judge is taking some time to write an opinion that, you know, you and I are here sort of poo-pooing the arguments a little bit. But it's a First Amendment claim, and it's an important legal issue that ought to be written up in a bunch of papers.

COATES: Involving a former president?

WILLIAMS: Involving a former president. You don't want to do this on the back of an envelope. And so, you know, God bless this judge for taking a minute with it and making sure that, you know, what he puts on paper is correct.


Now, a trial can still happen in a few months if the judge even takes some time to write an opinion. I don't want people to believe that all is lost and this defendant can never be held accountable simply because a judge is taking a few days to write an opinion.

COATES: What did you make of the fact that Fani Willis herself was not arguing this? Some might say this as, oh, well, based on the disqualification finding and undermining her credibility, that she's distancing herself. I didn't expect to see her in the courtroom today.

WILLIAMS: You know, look, if this were anything -- if we weren't in crazy town, 2024, the world that we live in right now, we wouldn't expect the chief prosecutor in an office to come in and argue a case. Think about here in Washington, D.C., where you and I both work, the U.S. attorney rarely comes in and argues cases. The attorney general of the United States doesn't go to court. And it is sort of, we're used to seeing Fani Willis in court because of some hearings that she's been a part of, but no, this is the kind of thing that would have been argued by one of her deputies. And I think that's what happened today.

COATES: I doubt we'll see Jack Smith as well arguing in these cases.

WILLIAMS: You're going to see Jack Smith.

COATES: So, that's just part of the two. Thank you, Elliot Williams. Always great to have you here. Now, all of Trump's legal cases, they cost a ton of money. And that's just in lawyer's fees. There's also Trump's $175 million bond, which comes due now in just a few days. So, maybe you've been seeing headlines like these, talking about how Trump's Truth Social is going to make him a ton of money.

Well, today, the stock just finished its first week being publicly traded. So, just how much is Trump's investment worth today? CNN Economics and Political Commentator Catherine Rampell is here. So, Catherine, tell us, how much is it worth?

CATHERINE RAMPELL, CNN ECONOMICS AND POLITICAL COMMENTATOR AND WASHINGTON POST OPINION COLUMNIST: Well, on paper, and that's what we're talking about here, he has 60 percent of this company, which translates to about $4 billion. Again, that's on paper.

COATES: What are his options now for turning what's on paper into cash?

RAMPELL: That is exactly the right question to ask, because if he's going to pay those legal judgments, he needs the actual cash. He has a few different options here. He could sell the stock, he could borrow against it, or he could do something a little dodgier that I'm going to call self-dealing.

So, let's look at what those are. Selling, that sounds probably pretty straightforward. The idea that he's got these stocks, he can just sell them on the open market, except it isn't. Generally, there's some sort of lockup period. If you're an insider in a company that's recently IPO'd, you have to wait a little while, unless he gets permission from the board.

Well, who's on the board? Lots of friendly faces. You've got Bob Lighthizer, who ran trade for Trump in the Trump administration, Kash Patel, who did a whole bunch of national security-related jobs, Linda McMahon, small business administration, Devin Nunes, former congressman, who was a very big Trumper. And then, of course, there's this guy, Don Jr., who we all recognize. He's probably not going to go against his pops.

But it's not only the board that matters here, it's also his investors, because if Trump dumps that stock, it could potentially cause the price of that stock to plummet. We have seen this before, for example, with other meme stocks. Big investor in Bed Bath& Beyond dumped his shares, caused the price to plummet, fall in about half in a couple of days. Regulators looked into it, and in that case, the investors were also pretty ticked off, and they weren't even asked to vote for that guy. In this case, we're talking about Trump's investors who are also his followers who may not be too keen on losing their life savings.

So, he could borrow against the value of the stock. However, that requires getting banks to play ball, right? Banks and Trump, not on the best of terms these days, beyond that, the collateral here is not super attractive. We're talking about the stocks themselves, the shares that Trump owns being held as collateral in these loans, well, they look super overvalued right now.

If you look at the price of the stock relative to the expected income stream, to how many subscribers Truth Social has, it doesn't look like the safest bet, may not be able to get money out that way.

Then there's potentially self-dealing, related party transactions. It's just a fancy term for Trump owns a bunch of different companies, and he can use them to sell things from one to the other. He could sell Mar-a-Lago. He could sell Trump Tower at whatever evaluation he wanted to this new publicly traded company and get the cash out that way. Again, regulators may not look super favorably on that either.

Same deal with licensing fees. So, we've heard of Trump Stakes. We've heard of Trump Vodka, Trump Sneakers. Trump can say, hey, my name is on that company, I think I should get some licensing fees. That might be a way to get some cash out, too.

COATES: So, what would be the potential consequences for, say, the average person who's investing in this stock?

RAMPELL: Potentially pretty dire. Again, this stock looks super overvalued. It's had a lot of hype behind it, but we've seen that happen with other meme stocks before.


You all may remember GameStop, for example. GameStop that had a lot of hype online, eventually reality caught up with it and the value plummeted. You could imagine something similar happening with this stock. It doesn't necessarily mean it'll happen tomorrow. There is a fair amount of dub money out there. There seems like there's always a greater fool. But at some point, the party may run out and a lot of people could lose their shirts.

COATES: Catherine Rampell, so informative. Thank you so much for breaking all of that down for us.

RAMPELL: Thank you.

COATES: Well, from Catherine Rampell to Caitlin Clark. That's the one who's been offered a reported $5 million to be the first woman to play in Ice Cube's Men's Basketball League. Should you take the gig? Cari Champion is here to talk about it, next.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Riggs challenged five-time Wimbledon champion, Billie Jean King.

BILLIE JEAN KING, HALL OF FAME TENNIS PLAYER: Oh, so my heart starts to pound and my stomach, you know, gets -- my stomach is starting to feel that pressure right away, because I knew I was going to say yes. I knew that it was on.


COATES: And what an iconic and groundbreaking equality turning point in sports it was. Now, a modern-day battle of the sexes may be coming to a pro basketball game near you.

The college phenom known as Caitlin Clark reportedly offered a whopping $5 million to join the BIG3. That's a men's three on three league founded by Ice Cube. He sees it as a win-win.


ICE CUBE, FOUNDER OF BIG3: We think with a move like this, you know, all boats rise, you know, with the tide. So, we think this would put the league in a different stratosphere. And you know, everybody across the board in the league would benefit.


COATES: Joining me now. CNN Contributor Cari Champion. Cari, so good to see you tonight. That's a hell of a figure, $5 million. Should she take the offer?

CARI CHAMPION, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: I would not take the offer if I were her. I have a few issues here with this. The first of it is that I hear what Ice Cube is saying, all boats rise with the tide. He's suggesting it helps his league. He's suggesting it helps women's basketball, the NBA. I just don't believe that Caitlin needs to play with a bunch of retired men to prove her value and what she's worth.

In fact, the reason why he's asking for it, because we are getting ready to watch in real-time, he's asking for Caitlin Clark to be on the BIG3 because she's going to really help in so many different ways in bringing the WNBA into a new level. Otherworldly talented, Laura, this girl is.

COATES: You know, that part is so important because so often people will say, oh, that's a person's a great athlete. But could she beat a man, right? You had the three-point shootout with Steph Curry and INSQ over the All-Star game weekend. I thought that was a really important moment and a lot of fun to watch, frankly, especially to have Steph Curry really battling it out with her.

And then you had all this belittling by sports broadcasters, including Kenny Smith, who really just diminished her performance. Take it harder tipping (ph) the women's line. You make a good point about the idea of why do women have to prove themselves only in relation to men.

CHAMPION: Yes, it's unfortunate, especially in this sport. I often amassed -- Lauren, you'll understand, give me your top five athletes, and I will put Serena in that -- hands down, any day. And they're like, no, no, no. I mean, the guys, you know, those, and that's just not fair. And this is why I truly believe, one, there were two things that happened with this offer. Sabrina -- excuse me Caitlin does not need to play in the BIG3 for her value. Also, Ice Cube. What about all the other women that are currently in the WNBA? Did you skip right over them? A'ja Wilson, for instance, who is another otherworldly player. I want everybody to sit down, take a beat and a break. I enjoy Caitlin Clark too, but she's not the best thing since sliced bread. There are other people to get some sunshine as well.

So, I think she'll be smart and probably make more money if she goes to the WNBA with merchandising and licensing and all the different things, name, image, and likeness. She could make more money. I'm sure.

COATES: But that goes to the same point though, her making that much money, even at the WNBA and endorsements, will still be a huge distance from other talented athletes. Why do you think that is?

CHAMPION: You know, I think that in this country, we are slow, especially when it comes to acknowledging women in sports. I shared with you off camera just the other day, I had an opportunity to be greeted by Madam Vice President and she was honoring women in sports because of Women's History Month.

And what we're realizing is, is that all that was needed, was just a little more time and attention. And every now and again, you get a player that breaks through. But until then, there's this huge gap. And it's not just in sports, but in other disciplines and other institutions in which we work and live in.

And so, it's going to stay that way, at least for now, but it's leveling out, Laura, on the college level. The NIL, the women players are making just as much as the men. And I love it. And we're going to catch up. I don't know if we'll see a day where it's equal, but it'll be commensurate.

COATES: Well, certainly a commensurate would be the -- well, one of the goals. But looking ahead, you know, Caitlin Clark is not a part of the WNBA. Her team is not yet, you know, crowned champions. If they will win, that's up in the air still. Do you think that the attention that she gets is going to make it a more difficult experience for her if she does get the WNBA?

CHAMPION: Oh, this is, oh, such a great question. I want to tell you a question that we have had in our friendship groups when I am texting with other friends that are in the business. And last night, I had a really good friend of mine said, there's something about her. Like, you know, let's just put all the fanfare aside.


There was something about her that makes me think that all she's interested in is playing ball. She doesn't care about the lime lights, the attention, the NIL, the money. Yes, that will come. But there is a purity in her heart when she plays. And I have -- I'm hard -- I would have a hard time believing that she just wouldn't excel. She is, you know, for lack of a better term, forgive me, and your audience, she's a dog. She has it in her. And so, when I watch her play, I'm thinking that's all she cares about. I just don't believe she will not succeed at that next level.

COATES: Well, from your lips to her three-point shots, Cari Champion, thank you so much. Nice to see you, as always.

All right. Look, we're minutes away from Beyonce's new album release. The countdown is going to start with us and the Beyonce reporter right after this.






COATES: All right. I got to get ready, everyone, because it's countdown time. We got to pick a hat. I'm not going to be caught slipping for the Beyonce album to drop at midnight. Are we doing option one? Nope, not doing that one. Hold on. How about this? Option two? Hold on a second. I'm going to get this right, because in case she's watching, hold on. Nope. Hold on a second. Wait. OK. We always bet on black. There we go.

Nothing is going to stop me from listening to this album as it's getting ready to come out. I can hardly wait for this album to drop, "Cowboy Carter." I got my earpiece all messed up from my cowboy hat, but it looks cute though. So, we're going to do. Everyone's phones, because I need to have all the phones in case my phone does not work to get the album dropped in about -- yes. Thank you. All of you get your phones. Thank you so much. Is there a -- what iPads on us? What else we have? Don't hold back. I need everything right now because I got to be able to have everything ready to go. She's going to break the internet.

Oh, we are counting down right now. OK. We are seconds away, really, from midnight because this album is getting ready to drop. And I want to bring in the USA Today reporter who was on the Beyonce beat. Who couldn't -- I can't think of a better assignment for you, Cache McClay, for all of the details. I've got my hat. I had other options.

All right. Cache, I am ready to go. What can you tell us about this new record? Am I going to be pulling an all-nighter tonight or I'd be having spaghetti? Wink, wink.

CACHE MCCLAY, BEYONCE REPORTER, USA TODAY: Well, first I want to say, I love the hat. Great choice.

COATES: It's cute. It is cute. MCCLAY: Yes, it's very cute. This album is huge and I think it's going to be groundbreaking, not just to country music, but to the music industry as a whole. I'm going to be pulling in all-nighter all night tonight. I think when Beyonce drops anything, it's sort of an experience.

So, there has been -- you know, fans all over the world have been listening in their respective time zones, but I've been waiting to experience that. And I think Beyonce has collaborated with some country music legends, as well as putting a spotlight on black country artists and boundary benders in the industry.

COATES: I've got all these phones going, seeing if anyone's getting it live or early, for some reason, no one has it yet. I want to be the first. You've actually been able to have a chance, and you're waiting for the 27 tracks. There are also collaborations. What do we know about who's on it?

MCCLAY: Yes. So, Beyonce was very deliberate and intentional about these collaborators. I mean, she has been so intentional throughout this entire process and the imagery and the music. When she posted the track list a few days ago at the top, it said, "Cowboy Carter" and the Rodeo Chitlin Circuit. And the Chitlin Circuit in history was a collection of venues that employed and celebrated Black artists that otherwise weren't during the Jim Crow era.

So, I think this is going to be a loud declaration and reclamation of country music. We can expect some big collaborators like Dolly Parton, I mean, she's come out and teased that, but as well as some country music artists past and present, and just sort of giving them their flowers. So, this will be huge.

COATES: I mean, we've got a countdown clock. We got less than two minutes now. I keep refreshing everyone's phones. I've made everyone give me their passwords, because I want to be the first to hear it and have a collective experience.

And basically, in her own words, by the way, she has said, this ain't a country album. This is a Beyonce album. She is very intentional about her body of work. So, help us read the tea leaves here. What is the message she wants to be conveyed?

MCCLAY: Well, I think she's saying this isn't just a country album. I mean, you know, Beyonce, her songs already are charting on multiple formats, not just country charts. And so, that just shows she isn't constrained to the boxes that people like to put her in. But also, I think she highlights the irony of country music and its invisible black roots.

And, you know, she sort of features Linda Martell. She has a track called the "Linda Martell Show." And Linda Martell was a Prominent black country music artist. She was the first black woman to perform at the Grand Ole Opry. That was huge in the past and even now.

So, I think she -- and her career, Linda Martell's, was short lived because she didn't get all the flowers she deserved. And Beyonce is saying, look, she's putting out the irony of this. She's pushing the envelope forward. She's shifting culture. I mean, I think this is just huge, like for present day, it'll be huge and beyond.

COATES: I mean, I already love the tracks we've already heard.