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New Day Saturday

Fiona Makes Landfall In Canada As A Post-Tropical Cyclone; Biden Goes After House GOP's "Thin" Midterm Agenda; Elton John Shocked As Joe Biden Surprises Him With National Humanities Medal; "Sham Referendums" Held In Russian-Occupied Parts Of Ukraine; Alex Jones Says He's Done Apologizing To Sandy Hook Families; DOJ Prosecutors Recommend Against Charging Congressman Matt Gaetz; Roger Federer Officially Retires From Professional Tennis. Aired 6-7a ET

Aired September 24, 2022 - 06:00   ET




BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Buones dias. Good morning and welcome to your New Day. I'm Boris Sanchez.

AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: And Amara Walker. Right now, two major storms are threatening the U.S. and Canada. Post tropical cyclone Fiona now making landfall and barreling into Canada's Coast after leaving a trail of destruction of Puerto Rico. The latest on the storms track coming up.

SANCHEZ: And Florida's governor declaring a state of emergency there as a tropical storm strengthens in the Caribbean. Forecasters warning it could become a serious hurricane. We're going to show you exactly where it's headed.

WALKER: And President Biden takes aim at the Republican midterm agenda and focuses his strategy on key voter issues like the abortion rights fight. Can he turn it into a winning strategy and can he capitalize on recent political wins.

SANCHEZ: Plus, international outrage. Russia has been accused of holding a sham referendum attempting to annex parts of Ukraine as the Russian military is accused of horrendous war crimes. We're going to take you to the front line.

Welcome to the weekend, Saturday, September 24. We're grateful that you are starting with us. Good morning, Amara.

WALKER: Good morning to you, Boris. It is dark and it is early but it is very nice to be with you. Well, this morning we are watching two major storms first to hurricane Fiona, which is now a post-tropical cyclone making landfall in Eastern Canada. So hurricane warnings are in place as damaging winds and heavy rain are pounding the region. In Nova Scotia more than 300,000 customers are without power right now.

SANCHEZ: And officials are warning the deadly storm that caused major destruction across several Caribbean islands can now become Canada's Hurricane Sandy.


MAYOR BRIAN BUTTON, CHANNEL-PORT AUX BASQUES, NEW FOUNDLAND: We've kind of right up until about 11:30 p.m. last night. We were still making calls to residents just to try to give some heads up that you need to be up, you need to be watching what's going on. And you need to be ready to move at a moment's notice if you don't already move right then.


SANCHEZ: Meantime, all eyes are on Florida. That state declaring a state of emergency as tropical storm Ian gain strength in the Caribbean. Ian is expected to strengthen a hurricane status as it makes its way to Western Cuba by Monday afternoon. And as we take it to the CNN Weather Center and CNN's Allison Chinchar, it looks as though it's headed right for the center of the Floridian Peninsula. Allison.

ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, it is and that's not necessarily if you live in Florida what you want to see but let's begin with the system in Canada that's starting to wrap back up. This is post-tropical storm Fiona. Winds are still at 90 miles per hour, folks, so don't let the post-tropical name ahead of it for you. This is still a very potent, very significant storm that's making its way through Atlantic Canada forward movement at about 26 miles per hour to the north.

You still have hurricane warnings in red and tropical storm warnings for some of the surrounding areas like Newfoundland and Quebec tropical storm warnings there. Winds are still expected to be high throughout the day. Today, you're looking at 95 miles per hour up around Sydney, Halifax still up around that 60 to 70 mile per hour range.

Now once we get into late Saturday and especially into Sunday, you will finally start to see a lot of those winds coming back down to say around the 20 to 30 mile per range but it's going to take a while for things to calm back down. Even across Maine you've got these wind advisories and high wind warnings those are valid until this evening. Again just even though it the system is far enough away. It's still close enough to be bringing some pretty significant winds even to areas of northern Maine.

Now we switch gears to the secondary system we're talking about this is tropical storm Ian named very late last night around 11:00, sustained winds at 45 miles per hour, gusting to 60 miles per hour. We have tropical storm watches out for Jamaica and hurricane watches out for the Cayman Islands. And the reason for that is we do anticipate the storm to strengthen as it makes its way towards the Cayman Islands, likely very late Sunday or early Monday morning.

From there it's expected to intensify even more as it makes its way towards Cuba, potentially even reaching major hurricane strength by the time it enters the Gulf of Mexico and begins to make that more of a right hand turn back towards Florida.

Now, at this point in time anything is fair game from Apalachicola all the way down to Key West.


So you've got a pretty wide swath, even though Tampa is really more towards the center, that concern really is going to be, Boris and Amara, the fact that it's likely to intensify, because it's about to go through very warm waters the next few days.

SANCHEZ: And we know you'll keep an eye on it for. Allison Chinchar, thank you so much. We want to pivot to politics now. President Biden is sharpening his messaging for the midterms with the election just 45 days away.

WALKER: Wow, just 45 days away. And that's not a lot of time. At a Democratic National Committee event, Biden blasted the Republicans midterm agenda, calling it a thin series of policy goals. He highlighted his accomplishments so far, and he promised to make abortion rights legal, protect Social Security and pass an assault weapons ban if Democrats keep control of Congress.

SANCHEZ: Let's take you to the White House now. And CNN White House correspondent Arlette Saenz joining us live. Arlette, walk us through all the messaging coming from the President to voters right now.

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Good morning, Boris and Amara. Well, President Biden really tried to present a contrast between the Democratic platform and what he has described as the agenda coming from MAGA Republicans. President Biden really offering a rebuttal of Kevin McCarthy, the House GOP leaders' agenda that he unveiled on Friday calling it a thin series of policy goals with little to no detail. And the President specifically said that Republicans did not offer a plan for protecting Social Security and Medicare or for protecting abortion rights. The White House really leaning into that issue of abortion rights. They're hoping that it could energize voters heading into those midterm elections.

And President Biden himself yesterday and over the course of the past few days really has really been hammering that message specifically pointing to that bill from Senator Lindsey Graham, which would ban most abortions in most cases at 15 weeks of pregnancy, the President calling that emblematic of the extreme positions that Republicans have been taking, but he also vowed in those remarks yesterday at that Democratic National Committee event that he would do everything in his can -- in his power to prevent a Republicans from banning abortions at that level, take a listen.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Republic has won control of the Congress abortion will be banned. And by the way, will be initially banned. But they went Congress I will veto it.

(END VIDEO CLIP) SAENZ: And that issue of abortion rights Democrats are really hoping will resonate with female voters as well as independent voters. You also heard President Biden talking about some of their legislative accomplishments when it comes to gun restrictions that were put in place in a bipartisan manner over the summer, also touting some of the economic proposals that they passed that inflation Reduction Act. Now the president is expected to hammer away this campaign message as he heads to Florida as well on Tuesday.

WALKER: All right, we'll be watching closely. Arlette Saenz, thank you very much at the White House there. So let's get some more perspective now from CNN political analysts Laura Barron Lopez. She is a White House correspondent for the PBS NewsHour. Good to see you this morning.

You know, you know very well, the President's been quite wary, right, in the past about focusing and being quite vocal on the abortion issue. But now he's obviously making it a focus of his midterm message. So clearly, the Democrats and of course, the President believed that this is going to be a mobilizing issue for voters, especially independents and suburban women.

LAURA BARRON-LOPEZ, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: That's right. They really do believe that this could potentially help them defy history, because as we know, in the past, when it's a midterm election, the party in power tends to not do very well the party that holds control of the White House.

And so Democrats were entering this election with pretty bleak odds, pretty bleak numbers, but with the overturning of Roe v. Wade, with the ongoing January 6 committee investigation, and the trickle of revelations from that, as well as the DOJ investigations into former President Trump. Democrats are hoping that the mix of all of those things could potentially make it so they at least hold on to the Senate.

I haven't heard many that are willing to say that they really think that the House is still that -- they are still able to keep the House in their under their power, although a number of polls are starting to make it look as though they have a fighting chance.

WALKER: Yes. And, you know, it's all about contrast, right. You have President Biden obviously pointing out abortion, you know, gun policy, and his legislative wins as well and including the climate and health care bill, though, which they call the Inflation Reduction Act.

And we saw a glimpse of, you know, what the policy blueprint will be for Republicans as Kevin McCarthy unveil that. What is the contrasting message then from the GOP and how might it resonate.


BARRON-LOPEZ: A lot of Republicans from the beginning have been trying to run on the economy, the economy wasn't looking good for the past year or so particularly with consumer goods, gas prices going up. Now, with gas prices going down, as well as Democrats being able to point to low unemployment numbers, at least still, or now. That has been the democratic counter.

Republicans still are trying to run on the economy and inflation. They're also really focusing on crime, immigration. But again, in that blueprint that the House GOP laid out, there aren't a lot of specifics in terms of what actual legislation they will pass.

We've also seen a number of Republican candidates in Senate races, backtrack on their positions on abortion going from more extreme support of bans on abortion to start into, say they support exemptions, to you know, being more open about what they would potentially support in terms of protecting abortion rights.

But in the blueprint that Republicans laid out, just yesterday, they said simply that they would protect the unborn children, quote, as well as their mothers but did not provide any specifics about how they would do that.

WALKER: And I guess the midterms will show just how vulnerable or not the Democrats might be with President Biden at the helm. And I say that because the latest CNN poll -- of polls shows President Biden's approval rating at 43 percent, while 55 percent as you see there disapprove of his job performance.

And also there was a new poll from Marquette Law School that was released on Thursday. And this was quite striking because three and four Americans that 72 percent do not want Biden to run again, of course, a huge percentage of that, including a Democrats themselves. If not Biden, then, you know, who else? Why do Democrats want, I guess, a different candidate?

BARRON-LOPEZ: Think it's a lot. There are a lot of the same reasons that during the primary and number of Democrats when they had their pick in the Democratic presidential primary, they weren't necessarily immediately behind Biden. They wanted to see a new generation of Democrats start to gain control. But again, ultimately, a lot of Democratic voters went with President Biden because they thought that he was the best suited to beat former President Trump.

Now, a lot of -- you don't hear many Democrats offer up another name, at least not right now. And a lot of Democrats I think are simply, you know, waiting for the president to decide whether or not he's going to run again. But younger voters that I talked to across the country, again, a lot of it has to do with the President's age, and that they would like to see New Democrats rise up within the ranks and different leaders.

WALKER: Yes, it doesn't seem at least the names that we've heard out there right now. And in terms of the prominent Democrats. There's not a lot that are willing to cross him at this time. So when it comes to the midterms and the Senate races, Laura, what do you make of what's happening in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Ohio? Where, you know, these are three states where you have GOP nominees for the Senate, seem to, you know, with near certainty, would win this fall. But there's some vulnerability that we're seeing some fortunes seemingly changes -- changing? What do you make of that? BARRON-LOPEZ: I think that the Dobbs decision, the overturning of Roe v. Wade has definitely had a big impact in a number of these races. When you look at voter registration since that decision was handed down, more women are registering to vote, and they're registering to vote more as Democrats.

And so the strategist that I talked to are really looking at those numbers, how are those going to factor in ultimately, those five special elections that a lot of Republicans thought were going to go their way across the country, you know, starting with the Kansas abortion referendum didn't go their way and it went towards Democrats.

And so I think that Democrats have seen their base start to become more motivated. Part of the reason that President Biden's numbers were so low was because of the lack of enthusiasm among the base, and we're seeing them start to tick up because of the fact that Roe v. Wade was overturned, and Democrats are rallying around their party because of that, as well as again, I've mentioned the threats to democracy, but a lot of the voters I talked to say that say that that's something that they really want the party to lead on.

And so as you've seen, heading closer to the midterms, President Biden talk about that more forcefully take on what he sees as a pervasive election denialism among Republicans.


You're starting to see the base rally more around the President as well as other Democrats.

WALKER: Yes, I think in the States and in many races, I think Republicans are you know, grappling with that dilemma of how much do you embrace Trump while keeping that distance as well. Laura Barron- Lopez, appreciate you joining us this morning. Thanks so much.

BARRON-LOPEZ: Thank you.

SANCHEZ: Last night, a break from politics as the South Lawn of the White House hosted a rock concert featuring music icon Elton John, also known as the Rocket Man. He performed a number of hit songs to standing ovations from the star studded audience. President Biden even getting emotional during John's performance of Crocodile Rock and we should take a moment to explain why Biden used to sing that song with his son Beau when he was a child.

And decades later, when Beau became ill and unable to communicate, the song was a way for the President to share moments, special moments with his son. The famous musician, Elton John was caught off guard by President Biden as he came on stage to present him with a National Humanities Medal. Watch this.


SIR JOHN ELTON, BRITISH SINGER: I'm never flabbergasted. But I'm flabbergasted and humbled and honored by this incredible award from the United States of America. I will treasure this so much. (END VIDEO CLIP)

SANCHEZ: White House says the metal was a tribute to John's musical legacy as well as his global advocacy and the fight against HIV and AIDS. Still ahead this hour on New Day, Ukrainians expressing fear and defiance as an alleged sham referendum begins in a Russian occupied territory.

WALKER: Plus, Alex Jones on trial. His surprising reaction on the stand in the face of the Sandy Hook parents and later, a memorial -- a memorable goodbye as legendary player and a storied tennis career.



SANCHEZ: New this morning as Moscow is threatening to annex occupied parts of Ukraine, President Biden says the United States and its allies are prepared to impose additional swift and severe economic sanctions on Russia.

WALKER: In a statement, Biden went on to call referendums currently underway in eastern Ukraine a sham and he said that the United States will never recognize Ukrainian territory as anything other than part of Ukraine. CNN's Ivan Watson is Hong Kong this morning with more.

IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Boris and Amara, a Kremlin spokesman says that the Russian government could move rapidly to formally annex Russian occupied parts of Ukraine, where pro-Russian officials have been organizing these referendum votes to try to justify breaking off from Ukraine.

To bolster this effort, there were large pro-government rallies staged on Friday in Moscow, and in St. Petersburg. But we're not seeing widespread support for Vladimir Putin's announcement on Wednesday of what he calls partial mobilization of hundreds of thousands of men to go fight for the Russian military in Ukraine. We've seen scenes of tearful farewells. And we've also seen this this bizarre phenomenon where the flights out of Russia right now are almost all sold out with ticket prices soaring. And then long lines reported and searches of travelers at the Russian border with Finland, the Russian border with Georgia, where CNN was filming at the border terminal today.

And Russian men almost all the travelers were men of fighting age, said that they were waiting 10, 12 hours to cross the border. Most of the men we spoke with said that they're trying to evade this draft. And similar reports have long lines at the border with Kazakhstan and other neighboring regions as well.

There's been criticism to the jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny from prison, calling the referendums in Russian occupied Ukraine fake and going on to accuse Putin of an historical crime by drafting people to go fight on the deadly battlefields of Ukraine, Boris and Amara.

WALKER: Ivan Watson, appreciate it. Thank you. Joining me now is Max Boot, a Washington Post columnist and senior fellow on the Council on Foreign Relations. Max, great to see you this morning so much to talk about. You know, we've seen this movie before, you know, specifically in 2014, after Russia invaded Crimea, and then an extent how does this sham referendum fit into the bigger picture with Putin seemingly in a very desperate situation?

MAX BOOT, SENIOR FELLOW, COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS: Well, I think you saw it, he is in a desperate situation, he doesn't quite know what to do. And so this week, he announced two steps, one of which are really three steps.

One of the first step being, of course, these sham referendums, which are not legitimate votes, they're illegal. They're not really asking people's opinions. They're going to announce some fantastic results. And then -- and next these regions to Russia.

The second step that he announced, of course, was the increase in mobilization to mobilize at least 300,000 new soldiers. And the third step, if you want to call it that was basically to engage in nuclear saber rattling because what he's basically trying to do is to say that we are extending the territory of Russia, and we reserve to ourselves the right to use nuclear weapons to protect Russia quote, unquote, if it is attacked as it currently is being done by Ukraine.


And so, he is basically trying to scare his adversaries. He's trying to change the calculus on the battlefield because he understands that he is losing this war. The Ukrainians have gained ground in Kharkiv in the Northeast, and the Russians are barely holding on around Kherson in the south. And so, Putin is throwing everything out there that you can possibly do to try to prevent a Ukrainian victory.

WALKER: Yes, I mean, I was really struck by our own reporting here at CNN, this week by our Katie -- Katie Bo Lillis, who reported that Putin is actually micromanaging what's happening on the ground, I mean, speaking to his generals in the field himself and giving directions to them, which is obviously highly unusual, especially in this modern world we live in right now, in the modern militaries that we have.

Give us a sense, a concrete sense of like what exactly is happening on the ground, the situation report in terms of the losses for Putin, and you know, how he really is losing this war.

BOOT: I mean, he really is, I mean the Russians are suffering tremendous losses. The latest figures that I've heard from the U.S. government are that they are estimated, last killed and wounded around 100,000 soldiers. And they have lost vast quantities of equipment, you know, over 1,100 tanks. They are really hurting. They are running out of precision guided munitions. They're running low on artillery ammunition. They're having to buy artillery shells from North Korea.

So there -- they are really reeling in. What Putin is trying to do is to stabilize the lines to prevent them from collapsing, because they already have suffered massive setback to this Ukrainian counteroffensive around Kharkiv, which has liberated several 1,000 miles of Ukrainian territory, and Putin is terrified that the Ukrainians will make a breakthrough in the South.

And the fact that he is now overriding once again, the professional judgment of his own military is a bad sign for the Russians because the last time that Putin did this was at the beginning of the war on February 24, when he had this cockamamie idea of taking Kyiv within three days, with an insufficient number of troops.

And apparently the generals told them that this was unrealistic, and he ignored them and the Russian army suffered a massive disaster and now they're suffering another disaster because with low morale, heavy losses, and incompetent leadership, that's not a good combination.

WALKER: I know you wrote an op-ed, Max, and we're out of time, unfortunately, but you are saying that right now is the time to strike while Putin is on the backfoot. He's reeling. It's time to step it up when it comes to helping Ukraine win this war.

We're going to have to leave it there unfortunately, Max Boot, but thanks for waking up. Appreciate it.

BOOT: Thanks for having me.

WALKER: All right. Coming up, conspiracy theorist Alex Jones says he is done apologizing after an emotional week of testimony from the families from Sandy Hook. Next, we're going to have the latest on the newest trial and a look at what to expect next week.



SANCHEZ: The conspiracy theorist Alex Jones took the stand this week at his latest defamation trial, and got into a heated exchange with attorneys, saying that, he is through apologizing to the families of Sandy Hook victims.

WALKER: And the "Infowars" host erupted into a fiery rant after tensed questioning by the victims' attorney, that exchange and shouting between attorneys prompting an admonishment from the judge who warned they could be held in contempt. CNN's Brynn Gingras with more.


BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Yes, surprising twist in this trial when the defense attorney for Alex Jones decided to not put him back on the stand for cross-examination. It's within his legal right. Defense Attorney Norm Pattis said it was his decision to make, but it does come after very explosive testimony from Alex Jones the day before where the plaintiff's attorneys questioned him on a number of things leading to some very fiery exchanges. Here's one.

CHRISTOPHER MATTEI, PLAINTIFF'S ATTORNEY: You have families in this courtroom here that lost children, sisters, wives, moms. ALEX JONES, RADIO HOST & CONSPIRACY THEORIST: This is struggle

session. Are we in China? I've already said I'm sorry hundreds of times and I'm done saying I'm sorry. I didn't post-generate this, I was the first person to say it, American government might be blamed for this as the left did. So we rejected it mainly and said it must not be true. But I legitimately thought about it on stage, and I stand by that and I don't apologize for it.

MATTEI: And don't apologize, Mr. Jones. Please don't apologize

JONES: No, I've already apologized to the parents over and over again.

MATTEI: In a video(ph) --

JONES: I won't apologize to you.


JONES: Won't apologize to you.

MATTEI: You're going to do it again --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Objection judge. Objection --

JONES: No, I will not --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Objection, argument --

JONES: I won't apologize to you --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, it's hard for me to get a word in edge- wise.

GINGRAS: And after that happened, the judge actually warned not only Jones, but both attorneys that they could be held in contempt of court if this kind of manner continued. Now, it's the ending to a very emotional week where we heard from a number of victims' family members who talked about their loved ones who died in 2012, and how their lives continue to be impacted by not only Jones, but "Infowars", and his followers and the lies that they continue to spread.

Now, it's unclear where we go now to court that picks a back-up next week. However, we do know that the defense attorney Norm Pattis said he does reserve the right to call Alex Jones back to the stand. So, that is very possible to happen sometime next week. I'm Brynn Gingras, in Waterbury, Connecticut, CNN.


SANCHEZ: Our thanks to Brynn for that reporting. Let's get some insight now from CNN legal analyst, Joey Jackson.


Joey, always great to see you bright and early on Saturday morning, and to get your expertise. I'm wondering what you make of those fireworks in court. It's now the second time that we've seen this with Alex Jones. He has words about the judge, he talks about these cases on his show. How is that going to impact the proceedings, you think?

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I think in a very negative way, good morning to you, Boris. And I'm not sure that we should be surprised. Remember where we are. We're in a situation where Alex Jones has defaulted with respect to three cases. What does that mean? It means, he failed to participate, failed to turn over relevant information to the other side, failed to follow judicial instructions, failed to really be a part of the process or otherwise engage.

As a result of that, it led to three default judgments in three separate cases, one in Texas and the one we're seeing here. What it means also is that, in the event that you don't participate or follow judicial rules, Boris, you lose by default. So he's already been deemed and determined to be liable, responsible for defamation.

What is defamation? It's false statements that impair and injure other people's reputations, and that otherwise cause them emotional --

WALKER: Right --

JACKSON: Just detriment. You're making up things about families, everyone being real, the deaths here being real. The impacts it's had upon the families being real. So, we're at the damages portion of the trial here where it's simply being determined how much he owes.

So, to your question, I think his combativeness and the nature of which he really presents this, which is to commercialize in profits from these deaths, is something that we should expect and anticipate. So I was not at all surprised at his antics in court just the other day on Thursday.

SANCHEZ: Is that why you think his defense team decided against a cross-examination after that outburst? Was that a way for them to mitigate more loss potentially?

JACKSON: I think so. I think -- you know, listen, it's certainly the case that in a court of law, there are going to be heated exchanges. There's a lot at stake, right? So, the reality is that, that court is a very tension, drama-filled, anxiety-filled process.

But what happened on Thursday where you certainly engage in total disrespect, you don't answer questions, but you go on into rants, you make accusations, it's not really what you should be doing.

And I think the -- his team really reflected and knew that, that does not move the ball forward with respect to limiting his damages and limiting his liability, impairing the jury negatively. So, they decided, you know what? Let's not put him on the stand. Let's break, take a breath, go on to next week, go on to other witnesses. I think we'll see him later on in the trial, Boris, but I think it was a good call not to resume the court on Friday with any more that he would have to say. SANCHEZ: And Joey, while we have you, I want to pivot to another big

legal headline. A source telling CNN that federal prosecutors have recommended against charging Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz in a sex- trafficking probe. The Department of Justice apparently having concerns with the credibility of two central witnesses. What's your reaction to the doubts about those witnesses?

JACKSON: You know, so this is significant, Boris, let me tell you why? What happens in federal court as distinguishable from state court as the federal government investigates you, and then after making an assessment as to credibility of witness, as to whether those witnesses can be corroborated, they will then charge you.

That's why the federal government has over 90 percent conviction rate. In state court, the distinction is, they'll arrest you, then they'll investigate. Here, with regard to your question, Boris, these two central witnesses that have credibility issues. One is a tax collector and a former friend of Matt Gaetz, as we look at there, right? Matt Gaetz, we're looking at.

And he was the tax collector, and really, he had information. He already pled guilty. And the offenses that he pled guilty for are fraud, identity theft, and other issues that are really credibility impairing. So, you can't hang the hook of the case on what he would have to say, which is Matt Gaetz was involved with a 17-year-old.

Matt Gaetz was involved in inappropriate behavior. You cannot hang your hook on that. You need corroborative evidence. Are there text messages? Are there e-mails? Or is there anything else? And then, of course, the 17-year-old as well, they, I think federal government is lacking corroboration, so they're deciding that they cannot prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt. That's what this is about to this point.

SANCHEZ: And quickly, Joey, if there are no federal charges, could there still be a state case?

JACKSON: There always can be a case built against you if other evidence emerges, whether it's state and federal, and it's not to say it's for close. At this point, the Fed say, look, we don't think we have enough. If something else coming up, they can charge you federally or in state court, but at this point, Boris, you know, you have to again -- not only have testimony, but have the corroborative proof that shows the testimony is on point.


If you don't have that, you don't have a case you can prove, you don't bring a case. So, we'll see what happens with new and additional evidence as the investigation continues to proceed.

SANCHEZ: And Joey Jackson, thanks again for the time, sir.

JACKSON: Always, thank you, Boris.

SANCHEZ: Yes. WALKER: All right, and a programming note, a real life story of

succession, "THE MURDOCHS: EMPIRE OF INFLUENCE" premieres with two episodes tomorrow at 9:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. here on CNN. Here is a preview.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Murdoch is the most ruthless businessman in the world history.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The biggest newspaper baron the world has ever known.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This fortune was built on the back of salacious tabloids. Sales are booming.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: His major like in the city --



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You need to realize that if you can make them afraid, they'll keep watching.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Rupert's goal was never money.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's got his eyes on much bigger game.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Rupert Murdoch is the most powerful, political force in America.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Politicians have been sucking up to Rupert Murdoch for decades.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He is building this dynasty to hand to his children.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's set it up into a trial by combat.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's no such thing as a sure bet in the succession battle. It's a kill or be killed mentality.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Whoever succeeds him will this absolutely gargantuan influence.

ANNOUNCER: "THE MURDOCHS: EMPIRE OF INFLUENCE", two episodes premieres only on CNN.




WALKER: Right now, it's not just the U.S.-Mexico border that is overwhelmed. The number of migrants trying to cross a treacherous Florida streets is the highest it has been in decades.

And CNN's Priscilla Alvarez embedded with the U.S. Coast Guard and Customs and Border Protection, and she filed this report.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Take a look at that leftovers washed up ashore.

PRISCILLA ALVAREZ, CNN REPORTER (voice-over): A grim reality out at sea. Migrants relying on makeshift sailboats to get to the United States. Nowadays, it's a regular sighting for Coast Guard.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's oncoming to sea at least, two to three different ventures on just in a span of five hours.

ALVAREZ: U.S. Coast Guard crews have interdicted more than 6,000 Cubans since last October, making it the highest number of Cuban migrant interceptions since the 1990s, and thousands of migrants have also made it to shore. So far this fiscal year, border authorities have encountered nearly 3,600 migrants in the Miami sector. That's up from just over 1,000 last year.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Seeing the uptick for us is really concerning in the fact that we're seeing more individuals on not so sea-worthy vessels, putting a significant amount of those individuals at very dangerous risks for loss of life.

ALVAREZ: Vessels include surfboards tied together and boats with limited provisions and no navigation system. For what is a days-long journey. For years, Cubans have been fleeing the island, but recent unrest, persecution and shortages of basic goods have pushed more to leave. Immigration attorney, David Claros who is based in Miami is hiring additional staff to meet the demand of Cubans arriving to Florida.

DAVID CLAROS, IMMIGRATION ATTORNEY: For the most part, individuals have come to us with stories of persecution from the local government for their inability to participate in certain events, for just the -- for not agreeing with local and communists' policy of the island.

ALVAREZ: Patrols here are complicated by the variant rain, acquiring coordination among agencies on land, air and sea or CBP Air and Marine operations also patrols for incoming vessels. And it's not just Cubans they're looking for, officials are also grappling with an increasing number of Haitian migrants.

(on camera): More than a 100 people traveled on this vessel from Haiti, a journey that can take about a week. If you look, you can see the clothes and the snacks left behind on what is a makeshift sailboat.

(voice-over): Chief patrol agent in the Miami sector, Walter Slosar acknowledged the demand on resources to address the new trend.

WALTER SLOSAR, U.S. BORDER PATROL, MIAMI SECTOR: We're all working with finite resources, and as we encounter these individuals, you don't know who is on that boat. It takes our agents time to bring them into our custody, make sure that they're -- you know, they're healthy and that they're clean and that they're fed and that they're safe.

And then identify exactly who they are.

ALVAREZ: Administration officials can see the jump in Cuban migration, not only at sea, but at the U.S.-Mexico border poses a challenge. This week, the administration said the U.S. Embassy in Havana is preparing to resume full immigrant visa processing for the first time since 2017. But out at sea, crews prepare for the worst.

(on camera): What goes through your mind when you do see them?

RICARDO RODRIGUEZ, U.S. COAST GUARD: They could be traumatizing and sometimes very sad, depending on the scenario that you find these people in.

ALVAREZ (on camera): U.S. Customs and Border Protection has deployed additional agents to the Miami sector amid the influx. Of course, the greatest concern now is the hurricane season and the dangers that, that poses to migrants who may take to the sea. Priscilla Alvarez, CNN, Washington.


WALKER: Yes, some really great reporting there. Thank you, Priscilla. Coming up, Roger Federer's emotional good-bye as he leaves tennis and heads into retirement. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


WALKER: Two of the greatest athletes of this generation stood tall Friday night.

SANCHEZ: And CNN's Carolyn Manno joins us now. A big night for Albert Pujols and Roger Federer.

CAROLYN MANNO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: That's right, good morning guys. One of those nights in sports history that, I think a lot of people will remember for a long time. Let's start in Los Angeles. Albert Pujols is already hitting homerun 699 in his first at-bat of the night, and in his second with 50,000 eagerly watching history made, sneaking just over the wall.

Pujol joining Barry Bonds, Hank Aaron, and Babe Ruth, that's only the fourth player in baseball's 700 homerun club. The slugger got a huge hug from his long-time friend Yadier Molina.


And then the curtain call from the L.A. faithful as well. Pujol is retiring after the season. A decision he said he was at peace with regardless of whether or not he could chase that milestone. But doesn't have to worry about that now. And in London, not a dry eye in sight as Roger Federer took to the court one last time. The 41-year- old 20-time Grand Slam champ joined by his longtime rival and his friend Rafael Nadal.

The two legends teaming up for doubles at the Laver Cup with those closest to Federer in the stands, watching on and so many fans appear not able to get the win unfortunately, but that's not what anybody is going to remember. The night was a celebration of one of tennis' great champions and one of the most revered athletes in the entire world. Boris and Amara, just a great night. Really special.

SANCHEZ: A lot of tears. Carolyn Manno, thank you so much. Stay with NEW DAY. We're back in just moments.