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New Jersey Governor Wins Nail-Biter in Sigh of Relief for Democrats; Meghan Markle Calls GOP Senators to Pitch Paid Family Leave; New Video Shows Moments Before Rittenhouse Opened Fire. Aired 7-7:30a ET
Aired November 04, 2021 - 07:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
TIM MAK, AUTHOR, MISFIRE, INSIDE THE DOWNFALL OF THE NRA: Between Olive North who's at the time the NRA president, and wants to initiate an internal audit of the NRA's finances, trying to figure out what's going on.
And he gets pushed out by Wayne LaPierre and other top NRA officials in this weekend, where all of this drama, all of these problems, their misspending, a New York attorney general investigation launches. I mean, there's all of this happening all at once and it begins the slide of the NRA towards its downfall.
BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN NEW DAY: Real quickly before I let you go, yes or no, can the NRA bounce back?
MAK: It's a really interesting question. Right now, the New York attorney general is trying to dissolve the NRA completely. So, we've got this ongoing court case that really will determine the entire future of the NRA and whether it can survive in the coming years.
KEILAR: All right, we'll see. And, look, you answer so many questions that I think people have about this black box, as you say. Tim Mak, wonderful book, thank you so much.
MAK: Thank you.
KEILAR: And New Day continues right now.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN NEW DAY: Welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. We can do it a duet. There's no reason we can't say it together.
I'm John Berman.
KEILAR: With Brianna Keilar.
BERMAN: It is Thursday, November 4th.
So, a win is a win. That is what Democrats are saying this morning, and they mean it. They also need it. A huge sigh of relief for them as CNN projects that New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy has won re-election. He is the first Democratic governor in that state to get a second term in four decades.
Now, he survived a very tight race in a very blue state.
KEILAR: And the slim margin of victory there in New Jersey, a state that President Biden won just by double digits just 12 months ago, is perhaps an even bigger shock for Democrats, actually Terry McAuliffe's defeat in the Virginia governor's race.
The results in both of these states -- the outcome is different, yes, but the results here highlight the challenges that are facing a party that is desperately seeking to keep control of Congress in the midterms.
Let's go now to John at the magic wall to walk us through this. Berman?
BERMAN: So, Brianna, as things stand right now, Phil Murphy is 35,000 votes ahead, leading by 1.4 percent. And, yes, a win is a win. Democrats are thrilled that Murphy has been re-elected in that state. But let me show you what has changed since just one year ago when Joe Biden won New Jersey by -- let's look at that. He won it by 700,000 votes, 725,000 votes. And -- oops, I shouldn't do it -- and 15.8 percent. That is a big difference there between those two races.
So, what's changed? Where did all of this change happen over time? We can look back again at New Jersey and let's look at the counties that Joe Biden won and the change from Biden's victory one year ago to Phil Murphy's victory. You can see all these are the counties that Biden won. You can see that four of them, four counties flipped to the Republican. Jack Ciattarelli was able to win Morris County, leading by 14 percent. This is a county Joe Biden won by 4 percent. So, by my calculation, that's a 16-point swing there. That's big.
Let's look around some of the other counties, if we can. I'll go back to New Jersey right now. I want to look at one Democratic county too that did not flip but you can also see a very big swing. This is Bergen County, Phil Murphy leading there by 5 almost percent. But Joe Biden won that by 16 percent. So, you see an 11-point swing there. So, very large swings, Phil Murphy in his favor had a lot of margins to work with. But it does seem, Brianna, like he needed it.
KEILAR: Yes. Look, we often see these swings. But Democrats have to figure out how to confront this because, obviously, they are struggling to. Berman, thank you for taking us into the state there.
CNN does have some new reporting on the Democrats and their struggle to find a message on the culture war that is surrounding critical race theory. And this is coming as the party comes to grips with their loss in Virginia.
CNN's Melanie Zanona is joining us now. You hear from Democrats and they say, looking within, we're not doing a good job with this.
MELANIE ZANONA, CNN CAPITOL HILL REPORTER: Yes. There's actually a meeting last night at the D headquarters where frontline members in these vulnerable districts represented research about how to handle the GOP's attacks on critical race theory. And there was actually a disagreement between two of these members.
In one camp, you had Lauren Underwood. And she stood up and argued, we need to be countering the GOP's misinformation on this issue head-on, and talking about what critical race theory is and isn't. This is an academic concept. It is primarily taught at universities. It is not teaching children that the country is racist.
And this is what she told us when we caught up with her. She said, quote, we have a rising American electorate that are black and born people who should be able to speak to their issues, their experiences as Americans in this country without feeling like it's a liability for other audiences.
This came because in the other camp, you had Caroline Bardo, also a member of the frontline district, and she was more leery about elevating the issue and drawing attention to it. She told us that this was just one of many conversations among members from our competitive districts about how to engage with our diverse and broad constituency approximates.
But, look, this exchange is a preview of the internal and potentially difficult debate to come inside the Democratic Party, especially after Virginia, where the GOP has shown that they are going to be embracing the culture wars, where these educational issues became a lightning rod in the race. And now you have Republicans signaling that this is going to be a blueprint for the midterms.
And so Democrats have to figure out how to handle this issue. It is really evoking their struggles with the defund the police movement in the last election. They didn't have a good tone or message. They didn't have a cohesive message. And they struggled and lost seats because of it.
KEILAR: How can they confront this without alienating some of their base? It's a big question of this division within the party. Melanie, thank you, great reporting.
BERMAN: So, a huge international celebrity is helping Democrats or trying to help Democrats push their trillion dollar social spending bill. Meghan Markle making phone calls to senators, including Republicans, lobbying for paid family leave to be included in the bill.
Sunlen Serfaty joins us live from Capitol Hill. Sunlen, we should have our Royals Correspondent Max Foster side by side with you. I mean, what's the reaction been to Meghan Markle reaching out?
SUNLEN SERFATY, CNN WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Well, the senators, John, seemed legitimately surprised by this phone call not necessarily by the nature of the advocacy on paid familyleave by Meghan Markle, but that she was reaching out to them directly on their personal cell phones.
Republican Senator Shelley Moore Capito recalling this call to Politico saying, quote, I'm in my car, I'm driving and it says caller I.D. blocked. Honestly, I thought it was Senator Manchin. His calls come in blocked. And she goes, Senator Capito, I said, yes, she said this is Meghan, the Duchess Of sussex.
And another Republican senator, Susan Collins, also confirming she received a call from Meghan Markle and that she too was surprised by that call coming in. But this comes as Speaker Pelosi made an abrupt move up here on the hill yesterday adding back in four weeks of paid family and medical leave to the Democrats's broader social spending bill.
This was after last week. It was scrapped completely from the bill after objections from Senator Joe Manchin, a moderate Democrat here in the Senate. And, John, it appears that his objections have not changed with this addition. He said yesterday that he still does not support paid family leave in the bill. He believes it should be handled separately. But this comes as Speaker Nancy Pelosi is still pushing for a vote on in the House on the social spending bill potentially as soon as today.
BERMAN: We're going to speak to Joe Manchin later. We'll have a chance to ask him directly about it. And I can understand getting Senator Capito confused with Joe Manchin, the Duchess of Sussex, the Earl of Huntington. It's all very similar, isn't it, Sunlen?
SERFATY: That's right, John.
BERMAN: Thank you very much.
KEILAR: So, what do the election results say about our politics as a nation? John Avlon has this Reality Check.
JOHN AVLON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: There's been a lot of beltway talk about how swing voters are extinct and independent voters don't really exist. That's partisan wishful thinking and the 2021 elections brought the receipts.
And Virginia, Republican Glenn Youngkin won independent voters by a nine-point margin after Joe Biden won them by 19 points just one year ago. Likewise, suburban districts that went for Biden by eight points swung to Youngkin by seven.
Now, the question, of course, is why. Well, if you take a big step back, you'll see in 11 of the last 12 gubernatorial elections in Virginia, going back to 1973, the candidate from the opposition party, won in reaction to the newly elected president. That is sometimes called the pendulum effect. It is a sign of the desire for some kind of balance in our politics, even if there is less and less evidence that divided government results in constructive compromise and common ground.
Now, in fact, fairly or not, 51 percent of Virginia voters saw the Democratic Party as too liberal while only 13 percent saw it as not liberal enough. On the flip side, 46 saw the Republican Party too conservative and 15 percent as not conservative enough.
None of this to say Virginia was a vindication for Donald Trump, far from it. In fact, after refusing to campaign with Trump, Glenn Youngkin outperformed the ex-president in every county in the state, every single one. in fact, Youngkin won the votes of 17 percent people who had an unfavorable view of Trump. So, the lesson should be that Trump was and is a drag on the Republican ticket in swing states.
But while Democrat McAuliffe couldn't successfully make the election referendum on Trump, he was also deprived of the ability to point to the passage of popular infrastructure and economic bills as evidence that Democrats can get things done.
And this is malpractice on the part of congressional Democrats. Their delay created a perception of dithering on issues that matter to people's daily lives while creating an opening for divisive culture war issues to define the debate.
And that's what Youngkin effectively did. His rallying cry, was parents matter, promising to ban critical race theory despite the fact that it's not actually part of the statewide curriculum. But the term has become a catch-all for parental concerns about antiracism lesson plans and gender identity politics in grade schools.
As the Baltimore Sun pointed out, it translated to a not so subtle message that teachers unions and progressives have hijacked the curriculum to indoctrinate youth into their woke cultural views reinforced by right-wing echo chamber, or as James Carville put it on PBS NewsHour.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMES CARVILLE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: What went wrong was this stupid wokeness. I mean, this defund the police lunacy to take Abraham Lincoln's name off of schools.
Some of these people need to go a woke detox center, or something. Their expressional language that people just don't use, and there is a backlash and a frustration at that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AVLON: Speaking of defund the police, it was decidedly rejected by Minneapolis voters. This is the kind of activist slogan that seems designed in a lab to serve as a fundraising tool for the RNC, especially at a time when violent crimes have been spiking in the U.S. After all, 2020 saw a 20 percent increase in homicides nationwide, largest jumps that the FBI began tracking national crime statistics in the 1960s. So, no wonder that support for funding the police more has grown, while just 15 percent of American say that police funding should be decrease. That's according to Pew.
But this is also a good example of the double bind Democrats get caught in. Joe Biden doesn't support defunding the police, neither does the vast majority of Democrats in Congress. But a handful of progressives associated with the so-called squad do, and that dominates perceptions, but it's kryptonite for swing voters.
And so it's instructive that Buffalo rejected a Democratic socialist versus a write-in campaign by the incumbent. While New York City Mayor-Elect Erica Adams won by promising to be tough on crime and tough on police abusive power, arguing that progressives can be practical.
A little reminder of some basic political math, according to Gallup, 36 percent of the American electorate identifies as conservative, 35 percent as moderate and 25 percent as liberal. That's the state of play in American politics. The center does exist and it's still up for grabs in ways that make it the margin of victory in competitive elections. Guess what? That's healthy for our democracy.
And that's your reality check.
KEILAR: It's a fascinating look. This is the bind that Democrats are in just within their party. Avlon, thank you for taking us through that.
Up next, never before seen video surveillance video of Kyle Rittenhouse, this was played for the jury in his trial, what it shows right before he opened fire.
BERMAN: The showdown today over executive privilege, will a judge order Donald Trump to turn over documents on the insurrection?
And a car chase, a crash on a bridge, see the suspect's desperate next move.
BERMAN: New FBi aerial surveillance video played in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial reveals never before seen moments. It appears to show what happened before the fatal shooting.
CNN's Shimon Prokupecz is live in Kenosha Wisconsin. Shimon, this has been riveting.
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: It has been certainly riveting listening to the testimony but also what prosecutors have been doing here is taking the jury back to the nights here in Kenosha when all the protests were going on, when all of that chaos was going on, using witnesses to go over meticulously every angle, what everyone was doing on the streets of Kenosha.
PROKUPECZ (voice over): Prosecutors laying out their case against Kyle Rittenhouse, recreating the night he shot three men in Kenosha, Wisconsin by showing jurors video from the scene, one showing the moment Rittenhouse shoots Joseph Rosenbaum four times. Defense saying his client did not fire the first shot.
MARK RICHARDS, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: It was the first, which was not Mr. Rittenhouse's shot.
PROKUPECZ: Kenosha Police Detective Martin Howard testifying for the prosecution, telling jurors Rosenbaum was unarmed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, no gun?
DETECTIVE MARTIN HOWARD, KENOSHA POLICE DEPARTMENT: No.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No knife?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No bat?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No club?
PROKUPECZ: Rittenhouse, who has pleaded not guilty, seemingly looking away from some of the most graphic videos. One, and we warn you, it's difficult to watch, is when he shot two people, killing Anthony Uber and injuring another.
Prosecutors also playing the grainy FBI infrared aerial surveillance video appearing to show Rittenhouse moving toward the parking lot where he shot Rosenbaum, this clip taken by a Daily Caller editor of Rittenhouse talking before the deadly shooting.
KYLE RITTENHOUSE, DEFENDANT: Our job is to protect this business. And part of my job is to also help people. If there's somebody hurt, I'm running into harm's way. That's why I have my rifle because I have to protect myself.
PROKUPECZ: The prosecution also playing this after Rittenhouse opened fire, walking down the street with his hands in the air.
PROKUPECZ: Koerri Washington also taking the stand Wednesday, testifying about a video he filmed during the night of the shooting, which shows Rittenhouse run by.
KOERRI WASHINGTON, PROSECUTION WITNESS: He just took a note of the people that were around me, especially people that are armed to kind of engage the crowd and the environment that I was in.
PROKUPECZ: Washington saying taking a mental note of the then 17- year-old.
WASHINGTON: I'm not saying I felt like, oh, this is a guy that is going to go around and mow a bunch of people down or anything like that. I just was like, oh, that's interesting. Let me take note of that.
PROKUPECZ: Before the trial began, the Judge Bruce Schroeder taking the spotlight for refusing to call the men Rittenhouse shot victims. The judge also quoting the bible to respond to a hearsay objection.
JUDGE BRUCE SCHROEDER, KENOSHA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT: This is actually referred to in the bible, Saint Paul when he was put on trial.
So it's an ancient rule. It's strictly enforced in the criminal courts for very obvious reasons.
PROKUPECZ (on camera): And, John, there have certainly been some colorful moments with the judge, raising some issues about things that have been happening outside the courtroom. But, obviously, most important is what's going on inside the courtroom.
Today, we expect to hear more from that detective and, obviously the video, more video. Prosecutors really using all the social media video, other video that they now have as part of their case.
BERMAN: Yes. Colorful judge is one thing, as long as it does not get in the way of the judicial process. Shimon Prokupecz, thank you so much for being there for us. I appreciate it.
KEILAR: All right. Let's talk about this with CNN Legal Analyst Areva Martin, who is the author of Awakening, Ladies, Leadership and the Lies We've Been Told. Areva, great to have you to discuss this.
I wonder what you think of this pivotal day in court and the effect of these videos.
AREVA MARTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: I think the videos, Brianna, are going to have a profound impact on the jurors. Watching Kyle Rittenhouse shoot those three men, I think the jurors are going to have to grapple with the fact that the men were unarmed. They didn't have a gun. As that detective testified too, they didn't have a bat, they didn't have a club, they didn't have any weapon, yet he used the level force that he did and killed two people and then injured another. I think that's going to have a profound impact on these jurors.
KEILAR: And what about his own words, the video of him speaking?
MARTIN: Also, we hear him appointing himself almost as if he's either law enforcement or some extension of law enforcement, that he was there to protect property, that he was there to get into harm's way. I think, again, the jurors are going to have to grapple with why is this 17-year-old appointed himself in this way? Why is he involved in what's going on?
This is a protest. Again, we should keep in mind, this is a protest over the shooting of Jacob Blake, an African-American man that was shot by police in Wisconsin. And here is a 17-year-old traveling into the state injecting himself into what was civil unrest that was happening as a result with Jacob Blake being shot. I think it's going to be pretty disturbing for some of those jurors.
KEILAR: Areva, I know you are watching the trial of the killing of Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia very carefully. And we have just learned that this jury will have 11 white members and one black juror. And just a reminder, this is a jurisdiction is a quarter black. What is your reaction to that?
MARTIN: Shock, Brianna. I was as shocked as Ahmaud Arbery's family. The spokesman for the family, the mother, all expressing their shock. There's always been concern in this case about whether there could be a fair trial in this county in Georgia, knowing that it has a racist past. We're in the Deep South. And now to see that jurors were struck from this jury and prosecutors saying that the sole reason was because of their race. And even the judge acknowledging that there was intentional discrimination with respect to the selection of the jurors. And now to have 11 white jurors and only one African-American, I think everyone should be concerned.
KEILAR: The judge -- I mean, look, you had eight potential black jurors that the defense removed. The judge said that the defense made the case individually for each one of these jurors. And the judge accepted that even as the judge said, hey, he has seen what we're seeing here. What do you make of that?
MARTIN: I think the judge made a bad call, to be honest, Brianna. The judge accepted the defense's argument that race wasn't the sole basis for exclusion of these jurors. We know it is unconstitutional to exclude jurors on the sole basis of race. And once the prosecution raised the issue, this is reverse-Batson situation where they were saying, look, these jurors were stricken solely because of race. The defense comes back and gives an explanation as to why they were stricken, something what they are calling race neutral. But when you look at the explanations that were given for the jurors, similar situations existed with respect to white jurors that were not stricken from this jury.
So, I think the judge made the wrong call.
We saw this happened in the Derek Chauvin trial, where reverse-Batson challenges were made by the prosecutors in that case, and they were able to select a jury that was more reflective of their community, a more diverse jury. Sadly, that didn't happen in this case. And I think it's going to have profound impact if there is an acquit al or a hung jury. So I think the community, that community and the community at large are going to have a lot of questions about whether this was a fair trial.
KEILAR: Yes. We'll have to see as this trial goes on. It is expected to last about a month. So we will have some answers as to maybe how this has affected things. Areva Martin, great to see you, thanks.
MARTIN: Thanks, Brianna.
KEILAR: Does President Biden deserve the blame for inflation in America? A former treasury secretary who predicted these higher prices and will talk about how Biden's policies have affected this issue is going to join us, next.
BERMAN: And does former President Trump have to comply with the January 6th committee? What a judge could decide just hours from now.