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Former Philadelphia City Commissioner Al Schmidt testifies before House Select Committee over threats from former President Trump; More than 100 million in central and east U.S. under extreme heat warnings; Yellowstone River at highest level in more than 100 years; New study shows Ivermectin not useful for treating COVID; January 6 committee accusing Donald Trump of bilking supporters out of $250 million. Aired 6:30-7a ET
Aired June 14, 2022 - 06:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
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AL SCHMIDT (R), FORMER PHILADELPHIA CITY COMMISSIONER: After the president tweeted at me by name, calling me out the way that he did, the threats became much more specific, much more graphic. And included not just me by name, but included members of my family.
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JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Former Republican Philadelphia City Commissioner Al Schmidt testifying before the House Select Committee on the threats that he and his family received after former President Trump targeted him for debunking his false election claims.
And Al Schmidt joins me now. Al, it's great to see you. When you were testifying, telling your story yesterday, what difference did you or do you hope it will make?
SCHMIDT: I think, really, the most important part of it all is how the committee is establishing a historical record for the future. I think it's very important that all of this be collected and organized and shared contemporaneously because it's a pretty, I think, significant moment in American history and it's important that people view it accurately in the future. I think that's the most important part. Secondarily is, hopefully, some degree of accountability comes out of this -- of this effort.
BERMAN: What kind of accountability?
SCHMIDT: Well, accountability on a couple of levels. One, accountability for the people who spread lies about the election. I know we've all been hoping that for a long time, because those same lies that motivated people to threaten the lives of election administrators across the country, Democrats and Republicans in big cities and rural counties are the same lies that motivated the people to do what they did on January 6.
So, it's hard for me to understand how you could have just so much awfulness occur so recklessly with no regard toward anyone else or their families or our democracy, and at the end of the day not have accountability come along with it.
BERMAN: You were debunking Trump's election fraud claims in real-time back in 2020 and the days after the election. You were doing here right on New Day on CNN. I am curious though, again, as you sit here this morning, do you think the possibility of success for the efforts that Trump made in 2020 are more or less likely next time around? In other words, do you think things are getting better or worse on this front?
SCHMIDT: I'm really worried about that. And I think I'm just naturally an optimist, believe it or not, but I don't know that the situation has improved at all since the end of 2020. If anything, it seems to have kind of settled in, in the minds of a lot of people. And, you know, the longer that lasts -- there's an expression that it's a lot -- it's a lot easier to fool someone than to convince someone that they've been fooled.
And the longer so many people have been sort of under this spell believing in all these things the harder I think it's going to be to bring them back to the truth.
BERMAN: Former Philadelphia City Commissioner Al Schmidt, I do appreciate your time this morning. Thank you for speaking with us.
SCHMIDT: Thank you.
BERMAN: Yellowstone National Park shut down as unprecedented flooding wreaking havoc there.
Plus, Trevor Reed demanding accountability and composition for Vladimir Putin holding him prisoner in Russia. He will join us live.
BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN ANCHOR: And if it's Tuesday, it must be primary day somewhere, right? What to watch for in key races, ahead.
KEILAR: More than 100 million are under extreme heat alerts across the central and eastern parts of the country today. Let's get to meteorologist Chad Myers to show us what we are looking at. It is a scorcher.
CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: It really is. This is the weather that was in the west end of last week and now it has shifted off to the east. Temperatures today in Nashville going to feel like 106. I say, OK yes that' shot, it's summer. But, it's going to feel like 106 in Chicago too, and that's in the shade. You stand in the sunshine it will feel 10 or 15 degrees warmer than that. Not much relief for tomorrow. Looks like the same map, but it isn't.
We had some thunderstorms on the top of these big high-pressure systems yesterday and 256 reports of wind damage. Still more than a half-million people without power this morning from those thunderstorms.
Not quite as many thunderstorms today, but they still will be out there and the heat will last through most of the weekend.
KEILAR: All right, Chad, thank you for that.
BERMAN; All right, we have stunning pictures this morning out of the Yellowstone. The Yellowstone River is at its highest elevation in more than 100 years. Unprecedented rainfall causing heavy flooding and rock slides in the park. The entrances to the park are temporarily closed. They will be so for at least the next two days.
We have video from Gardiner, Montana. And the entire building collapsed into the river. The town is now isolated without power and water. That is just amazing. Joining us now CNN Chief Climate Correspondent Bill Weir. Bill, looking at these pictures from Yellowstone.
BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: Yes.
BERMAN: Just talk to us about how serious the flooding is and what exactly is causing it.
WEIR: Welcome to the age of too much water in some places and not nearly enough in others. This is so intense. It's a combination of maybe 3, 4 inches of rain at a time and a lot of snow up there. More so than the Rockies or the Sierras. And it's hot. So, that melts. That rapid melt plus the hard rain there, at one point there in Montana it crested and broke a 100-year-old record by 2 feet.
And so, as you can see, folks who built that house in -- right along the riverbank there, a dream spot, never considered this sort of devouring power that came through and just collapsing bridges, taking away pieces of a highway as well. It's really troubling. They had to evacuate some folks by raft in there. Some are -- may still be stranded in there. But, it's going to take a long time just to access the damage to wells and wastewater treatment. So this is just the beginning.
BERMAN: This is a huge river, right?
WEIR: It is.
BERMAN: This -- the traverse is such a large part of the park here. So, how long? You mentioned it's going to take a while. How long will the park be closed do you think?
WEIR: It's closed at least until Wednesday. Could be longer than that as they wait for that water to subside. And it's the worst timing because this is the start of the tourist season. They get about 3 million visitors a year, Yellowstone. A lot of families plan their vacation around this. And so, and it all remains to be seen.
BERMAN: Talk about the melt here. Because that's the possible -- there is a possible climate connection here.
BERMAN: So, in addition to all the rain they're having, they're having more melting than usual.
WEIR: Exactly. And it was intense heat high in the Rockies. And again, that's your water tank. You want it to be consistent and slow and predictable because that water hopefully is going to get you through to the fall. But when it -- you know -- it's that warm up there, comes down so fast, that's troubling as well.
Climate attribution, science is fastly developing. It takes a while to say, all right this wouldn't have happened without man-made global warming by X percentage. But it's all consistent with what the scientists have been telling us for a long time, of more intense weather events more frequently.
KEILAR: What does this portend for the future? I mean, how much more are we going to see of this? Obviously, this gets a lot of attention, it's in Yellowstone, but this is going to happen in a lot of places.
WEIR: It's happening everywhere in ways that we just don't notice as traumatically as that house going in, you know. We -- we're -- we did the ones on the Outer Banks of the Carolinas a couple of weeks ago. These are slow-motion disasters, just, you know, tenths of a degree until this sort of thing happens.
And, unfortunately, the Arctic's not going to refreeze anytime soon. You know, these patterns aren't going to lessen anytime soon. And it's also the age of adaptation. We have to get ready for these sorts of events.
BERMAN: Bill Weir, I predict a trip to Yellowstone, perhaps, in your near future.
WEIR: I'll take it any chance I can get it. My heart goes out to the folks at the parks department there, trying to deal with this. And all those scared families. Hope they get out of there OK.
BERMAN: Thanks, Bill.
WEIR: You bet.
BERMAN: We really appreciate it.
So, a new study says the drug Ivermectin is not useful for treating corona virus. This is despite two years of some people endorsing it.
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JOE ROGAN, PODCAST HOST: Before there were vaccines this was a common treatment, an off-label treatment for COVID. No, I do not --
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BERMAN: The truth about Ivermectin, next.
KEILAR: Plus, investigators looking into meddling in Georgia's 2020 election results. They're actually seeking testimony from a former publicist to R. Kelly and Kanye West. We have that report first on CNN, ahead.
KEILAR: A new clinical trial testing Ivermectin on people with COVID has found that the anti-parasitic drug does not reduce the recovery time from COVID. This comes after months of claims by some of the most listened to voices in media praising the drug's alleged effects.
In February 2021, Fox host Laura Ingraham tweeted, "If the goal was to get us back to normal, Ivermectin would be top choice therapeutic in the U.S. right now. Ask yourself why it isn't."
And he was hardly the only one.
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MARIA BARTIROMO, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: Any mention of either Ivermectin or, to a lesser extent, Hydroxychloroquine was met with a tax and takedowns by political operatives and some media.
ROGAN: Now, I do not know what the motivation for demonizing this particular medication is.
AARON RODGERS, QUARTERBACK GREEN BAY PACKERS: I consulted with a now good friend of mine, Joe Rogan, after he got COVID and I've been doing a lot of the stuff that he recommended in his podcasts and, you know, on the phone to me. I've been taking monoclonal antibodies, Ivermectin, zinc, vitamin C and D, HCQ and I feel pretty incredible.
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KEILAR: Joining us now, CNN Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen.
I'm curious what you think about these findings.
ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: What I think is we ought to stop spending money spend -- on studying Ivermectin. It doesn't work. This is, yet, another study that shows this. It doesn't work. And we ought to move on.
So, let's go over what they found in this study, Brianna. It was more than 1,500 people who had COVID. They were not in the hospital so it was only mild to moderate. Ivermectin, they gave some people Ivermectin, some people they didn't and there was no significant difference in symptoms, no difference in emergency room visits and no difference in hospitalizations.
And, Brianna, when I hear that sort of parade of people who you just played, saying they took Ivermectin and they felt better, well news flash. Most people who get COVID recover. Most people who get COVID recover. So, it's not exactly stunning that they took Ivermectin and felt better.
I'll tell you, I had COVID recently. I was sick for only about a day. It was very mild. I got over it easily. My secret was that my husband brought me my favorite chocolate chip cookie. Would I ever say that a chocolate chip cookie cured me of COVID? No. You're laughing because it's absurd. Just because you have COVID and you take whatever, it doesn't mean that, that whatever cured you. You put it to the test, we put it to the test. Let's stop talking about Ivermectin and Hydroxychloroquine. Brianna?
KEILAR: I watched a bunch of "Bridgerton" and I don't think that that cured me.
COHEN: There you go.
KEILAR: But it sure did make the time pass very well. Elizabeth Cohen, thank you so much for that.
COHEN: Thanks (ph).
KEILAR: He was the lead counsel in the first impeachment of former President Trump. We're going to get Daniel Goldman's take on the January 6 hearing straight ahead.
BERMAN: It's kind of a racy show.
KEILAR: Yes, it is.
BERMAN: And the Golden State Warriors, one win away from another NBA title, which they will not get because they will be denied in a dramatic comeback that is about to come. The Bleacher Report is next.
BERMAN: The Boston Celtics poised for a dramatic comeback cause they're going to need it after dropping game 5 to the Warriors. Andy Scholes has this morning's Bleacher Report. This was kind of ugly, Andy?
SCHOLES: It was an ugly game, John. And if were to told you that Steph Curry, for the first time in 233 games was not going to make it three, he was going to 0 for 9, you know, you probably would have thought the Celtics were going win game five last night.
But, that was not the case. Boston missed their first 12 threes of the game. They fell behind by 16. But then, they made eight in a row. Took the lead on this. Al Horford three, they were all pumped up. But then the closing seconds of the third quarter Jordan Poole is going to make a three at the buzzer, put the Warriors up by one heading into the fourth quarter.
And with Steph really struggling, Andrew Wiggins picking up the slack. The former first overall pick, the game of his life. He scored 26 points, grabbed 13 rebounds. This dunk with two minutes to go had the home crowd going nuts. Warriors win 104-94 despite Steph not making a three for the first time in his playoff career.
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STEPHEN CURRY, PROFESSIONAL BASKETBALL PLAYER FOR GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS: I don't think I've ever been happier after O for whatever type of night, just knowing that context of the game, there's a fire burning and I want to make shots. But the rest of it is just about how you win a game and we did that.
AL HORFORD, PROFESSIONAL BASKETBALL PLAYER FOR BOSTON CELTICS: Our backs are against the wall. You know, we have to -- this is the time that we, you know, we look at each other in they eyes and we got to figure it out. You know, we have an opportunity now and we got to figure it out. There's no tomorrow for us.
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SCHOLES: Yes. The Warriors can now win it all Thursday night in game six. That game is back in Boston. And you know, John, this was the first time all playoffs that the Celtics have lost two games in a row. Certainly they can't lose three in a row, right?
BERMAN: I would certainly hope not. But, look, the games in Boston Thursday night. Hopefully they find a way to come back.
SCHOLES: Yes, we all want a game seven on Sunday, right? That would be the best outcome for all of the fans.
KEILAR: No, that's fine. We don't need one. That's great. My team's winning. Great with game not seven.
BERMAN: All right, Andy, thank you very much.
SCHOLES: All right.
BERMAN: New Day continues right now.
Good morning to our viewers here in the United States and all around the world. It is Tuesday, June 14. I'm John Berman with Brianna Keilar.
The January 6 committee accusing Donald Trump of more or less bilking his supporters out of $250 million, laying out the case that Trump solicited money by using lies as a fundraising tool, adding that he sent them the 25 e-mails a day soliciting donations for a legal fund that simply didn't exist. But, is that criminal?
And will Attorney General Merrick Garland will pursue or prosecute? Those are the key questions emerging from the hearings. And there does seem to b a new rift emerging from within the January 6 committee itself, whether it will make a specific criminal referral to the Justice Department.