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One World with Zain Asher

SCOTUS Justices Unanimously Reject A Lawsuit Challenging Abortion Pill Regulations; G7 Summit Underway, Focuses On War In Ukraine; One and A Half Million Muslims Descend Mecca For A Five-Day Event Starting Friday; BTS K-Pop Star Jin Hugs 1000 Fans In Seoul After Completing Military Service In South Korea. Aired 12-1p ET

Aired June 13, 2024 - 12:00:00   ET




BIANNA GOLODRYGA, CNN ANCHOR: All right, live from New York, I'm Bianna Golodryga.

ZAIN ASHER, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Zain Asher. You are indeed watching ONE WORLD. All right, anti-abortion advocates -- just been handed a big setback

from the U.S. Supreme Court. The justices have unanimously rejected a lawsuit that challenged the regulations on an abortion pill.

GOLODRYGA: Doctors and anti-abortion groups sued the Food and Drug Administration over access to Mifepristone through the mail. The High Court

decided that the plaintiffs did not have the standing to sue in the first place.

ASHER: That means patients can continue to receive Mifepristone through the mail. While this may be a win for reproductive rights for now, it

certainly does leave the door open for future lawsuits.

GOLODRYGA: Senator Chuck Schumer echoed that on the floor of the Senate earlier. Lawmakers are considering a bill that would guarantee access to in

vitro fertilization, which Schumer believes is the next Republican target.


SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): So, today, the question before the Senate is very simple. Do we agree that Americans should be free to use IVF if they

want to? Yes or no? If yes, then the only right answer is to vote in favor of today's bill.


ASHER: All right, Jessica Schneider joins us live now from Washington. It really is important to note that this ruling was essentially based on a

technicality, right? It wasn't really based on women's rights. The idea is that the group, the plaintiffs that brought this lawsuit, they weren't

damaged financially. They didn't suffer damages physically. They had absolutely no right to bring this ruling in the first place. Take us

through that.

JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, that's exactly right. And what it does is while it closes the door on this lawsuit, it leaves the

door open to other potential lawsuits. But as you guys mentioned, this is one of the big rulings we've been anticipating. And it really thrusts the

justices back into the center of this abortion debate two years after they overruled Roe v. Wade.

So, Zain, like you said, this time they gave sort of an inadvertent win to the supporters of abortion rights. So, the Supreme Court, it was a

unanimous opinion. And what they did is they dismissed a lawsuit brought by anti-abortion doctors that could have severely restricted the availability

of the abortion pill.

And this is a drug that is used in more than half of all abortions nationwide. It's a drug that's become increasingly used in the two years

since abortion rights have really been restricted in many states around the country.

And what the Supreme Court said is that this particular group that brought this lawsuit, just this group of doctors, doesn't have the necessary legal

standing or the legal right or the injury necessary to bring this case. And the Supreme Court said that's because the doctors here, they specifically

didn't prescribe Mifepristone. They didn't use Mifepristone.

So, they just didn't have any standing to even bring this case. The doctors, they had asked to really nullify the ability of the Federal Drug

Administration to even approve this drug. And they also wanted to get rid of all the changes that were made to the drug in recent years, like making

it available via mail, via telehealth, also allowing women to use it up to 10 weeks in pregnancy. None of those restrictions went back into place. All

remains status quo. So, this is really a major win for abortion rights group.

As I mentioned, though, it doesn't close the door to future lawsuits. You know, other groups might have the legal standing in the future to bring

this case. They could really challenge the legality of Mifepristone, of the FDA's ability to approve Mifepristone in the future. But for now, this pill

will remain widely available.

So, Zain, you know, a big win at this moment for abortion rights advocates. But it's notable. We do have, you know, we're expecting about two dozen

cases still in the coming weeks here. There's another case involving abortion rights. And then, of course, we're expecting several other big

ones, including whether or not Donald Trump is immune from criminal prosecution. So, still a lot to come from this Supreme Court, guys.

ASHER: Absolutely. Jessica Schneider live for us there. Thank you so much. We're actually going to have much more on the medical and the political

implications of this decision in about 25 minutes from now. All right, turning now to the G7 meeting in southern Italy. The image is certainly

meant to project unity, the message one of strength.

GOLODRYGA: But the reality is this year's G7 gathering is less a display of Western power than a political vulnerability, with many leaders

distracted by elections or crises at home.


The three-day summit is well underway, with the war in Ukraine now a key focus. The meeting opened with an agreement on an American proposal to back

a $15 billion -- $50 billion loan to Kyiv using profits from frozen Russian assets as collateral. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is there, and

he's expected to sign a bilateral security pact with U.S. President Biden later today.

ASHER: Both leaders, meantime, are holding a joint news conference next hour. We'll, of course, bring that to you live as soon as it happens. Also,

high on the agenda, of course, is the war in Gaza. CNN's Nic Robinson joins us live now from southern Italy.

So, Nic, obviously, the main focus in all of this is going to be the security agreement between the United States and Ukraine. But worth noting

that come November, everything is on the table. Of course, Trump could undo that agreement. So, there really are no guarantees here.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: There aren't. Certainly, that bilateral relationship, the security support package that they're going to

talk about, sign today. We'll get more details of it when President Biden announces it fairly soon. That is potentially something that could be in a

risky place.

But I think perhaps what backs it up is the fact that all the other NATO members are also making similar security -- bilateral security agreements

with Ukraine. Fourteen NATO members have already done it. This will be President Biden moving ahead with it today will be a signal to the other 17

NATO members, as well, to do the same.

So, in a way, there's some insulation from whatever impact Donald Trump might have if he becomes President. And if he makes other moves that would

weaken NATO, as well. This, in a way, tries to provide some backstop on those risks. But I think what we're seeing in that multilateral deal to use

the profits from those 300 billion dollars of frozen Russian assets to give Ukraine a $50 billion loan.

I think that is a very clear signal of what's being done to try to ring fence support for Ukraine in case Donald Trump wins the presidency. And why

-- why does -- why do I say that? And why has it been done? This this loan being done structured this way. And also, it's worth noting that it's

agreed at the top political level.

But because of the expediency behind this, some of the details are still being worked out. But the reason is to give Ukraine that money before the

end of the year, a $50 billion loan. Ukraine gets the $50 billion. It's obligated to pay it back. But it has the money before a new U.S. President

would be sworn in. So, that that would ring fence some support for Ukraine. But again, it is this issue is on everyone's minds here.

ASHER: All right, Nic Robertson, life for us there. Thank you so much.

GOLODRYGA: Well, John Bolton, a former U.S. national security adviser in the Trump administration and author of "The Room Where It Happened: A White

House Memoir" joins us now live from Washington with more on this. Ambassador Bolton, thank you so much for your time and joining us. It is

interesting that the focus largely among these leaders in dealing with Ukraine, at least, is to try to Trump-proof any sort of alliances and

security guarantees going forward, if Donald Trump does return to the Oval Office.

I want to ask you specifically about this bilateral 10-year deal. We're going to learn more details throughout the day, I would imagine, between

the United States and Ukraine. One of the men who succeeded you and a Democratic administration, Jake Sullivan, the current national security

adviser, said this in regard to this 10-year agreement.

He said it would send Russia a signal of our resolve. If Vladimir Putin thinks that he can outlast the coalition supporting Ukraine, he's wrong. He

just cannot wait us out. Do you agree with that? Do you think that this deal alone sends that sharp of a message?

JOHN BOLTON, FORMER U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: No, I don't. I mean, I fully understand why people are concerned, the G7 generally, the Biden

administration in particular, about what Trump might do if he gets elected. I think it's illusory, though, to think that Trump will feel bound by it.

And I say that as somebody, I've made a small specialty in my professional career, getting out of treaties and agreements that the presidents I worked

for thought were disadvantageous to the United States.

And nobody should have that under any illusions. If Trump is inaugurated at noon on the 20th of January next year, by about five afternoon, he could --

he could have dissolved this agreement in its entirety. So, if you can't bind a future President who doesn't want to be bound, and that includes

getting out of treaties, which this isn't even a treaty.


I think there may actually be a bit of a downside here when Trump hears about this and concludes they're trying to lock him in. That'll just make

him more irritated. So, again, the substance of what they're concerned about at this G7 meeting is entirely worthwhile to be concerned about,

because that -- Trump will be a danger to exactly what they're talking about. But nobody should come away thinking, oh, well, they solved the

problem. They've not. Trump proved it.

ASHER: We've just seen, Ambassador, across Europe with recent European elections, just the rise of the far right. I mean, President Emmanuel

Macron of France just called snap elections. That is a decision that certainly surprised a lot of people. We saw the Belgian Prime Minister

agreed to step down -- step down. We saw the rise of the far right also in Germany, as well.

And then on top of that, you have Biden -- God knows what his political future will look like come November. So, based on all that, we have no idea

-- no idea what the world is going to look like in three months, in six months from now. So, how does that complicate everybody's sort of faith in

the ability of the leaders around this table to make any sort of concrete long-term decisions here?

BOLTON: Well, I think, as you observed at the beginning of the program, that these -- these are leaders who, by and large, are in deep political

trouble in their own -- own countries. Indeed, ironically, the only one who's not currently in trouble is Giorgia Meloni, the Prime Minister of

Italy and the host of this meeting.

And she came from very much the right side of the Italian political spectrum, but -- but has become, I think, by all accounts, a very

responsible and determined leader and somebody who has advocated support for NATO support for Ukraine.

So, predicting what somebody is going to do once they get in office is very difficult, particularly with all due respect to the European Union, when

it's based on European Union parliamentary elections, which are -- which are detached from decision making would be a kind way to put it.

You know, I think it looks like Ursula von der Leyen will be reapproved by the parliament as the head of the -- basically the head of the European

Union, which means no real change there. And the major factor, of course, is what happens in November in the United States. And that at this point

remains a toss up.

Yeah, you're absolutely right about Giorgia Meloni. I mean, I think sort of her perception or the perception people had of her on the world stage a few

years ago is very different from the way people see her now. I mean, she's obviously become quite cozy with Ursula von der Leyen, with President

Biden, as well. And of course, she has been buoyed up by this, by the results of the recent sort of elections in Italy --

GOLODRYGA: And has supported Ukraine.

ASHER: And has supported Ukraine, where her party did extremely well in the recent elections. Ambassador, do stay with us for another story. We are

following this hour. Donald Trump, your former boss, has returned to a place that he has actually not been since before the January 6th riots. And

that, of course, is Capitol Hill.

GOLODRYGA: Yeah, it's been quite the reunion. He is meeting with congressional Republicans today. And according to sources in the room,

Trump has been joking with House members, doing an impression of Joe Biden, mocking Republicans who have opposed him in the past. And he did turn

serious at one point. According to one source, Trump cautioned Republicans not to go too far on the abortion issue. Interesting, especially given what

we heard from the Supreme Court today.

ASHER: And later on this hour, he will have a meeting with Republican senators. That reception is obviously likely to be a bit frosty.

GOLODRYGA: Okay, Ambassador. So, let's talk about things a bit closer to home. Listen, this is a reunion that if it had happened two years ago,

Trump would have been met with staunch opposition and anger. There's no love lost, as we know, between specifically Mitch McConnell and Donald

Trump. Mitch McConnell, after January 6th, said these words. Trump practically and morally was responsible. And yet here we are. It appears

that he's fully rehabilitated. He will more than likely be the Republican nominee.

Aside from the serious tone he set on abortion, I think he rambled on everything from Hannibal Lecter again and made other, I don't know,

indecipherable comments. We're hearing from our reporters in the room. But what message does this send in your view? The fact that given everything

that has happened, he has once again been welcomed by the party like this.

BOLTON: Well, I'm not sure how many actually welcomed him and how many showed up because they figured it was the easiest thing to do. That isn't a

great testament to strength of character necessarily. But I think a lot of Republicans do feel intimidated by Trump. And what Mitch McConnell and

others had in mind from their point of view, their objective is getting Republican control of the Senate or maintaining Republican control of the



It is a reality for them that Trump's going to be the nominee. I'm not happy about that, either. But they want a Trump who thinks in terms of

broader success for the party, who helps senatorial candidates, who helps House candidates, as opposed to a Trump who just runs on his own.

So, I take this meeting today actually to be a sign of the professional direction at the top of Trump's campaign. Whether it lasts beyond this

meeting that Trump cares for anybody running for the House and the Senate remains to be seen. It is -- the pattern is it's always about Donald Trump.

And I expect after a few nice words and maybe some incoherent words from him today, he'll revert to that direction.

GOLODRYGA: So, you're not happy with him being the nominee -- does that suggest that you won't be voting for him in November?

BOLTON: I'm going to do the same thing I did in 2020. I didn't vote for Trump and I didn't vote for Biden. I wanted to vote for a conservative

Republican. There wasn't one on the ballot. I live in Maryland. So, I wrote in Dick Cheney and I'll do it again this November.

GOLODRYGA: All right. Ambassador John Bolton, thank you so much for your time.

ASHER: Thank you. All right, thousands flock to Athens each year to see the ancient landmarks. But the hot Greek summer has forced officials to

make some changes at the Acropolis or in the interest of safety. We'll have details for you on that ahead.

GOLODRYGA: Plus, with no time to dry out, South Florida braces for a third day of destructive downpours. Look at that flooding. A live look at the

conditions there after the break.


DONIE O'SULLIVAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Are you concerned if Trump loses?


O'SULLIVAN: That there will be another January 6th?

UNKNOWN: No, I think there will be a civil war. That's what I think will happen.




GOLODRYGA (voice-over): Stay hydrated and carry umbrellas. That is the advice from Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Health ahead of the annual Hajj --

Hajj. One and a half million Muslims are descending on Mecca for the five- day event, which starts Friday.

ASHER (voice-over): Yeah, temperatures for this year's pilgrimage could soar to 48 degrees Celsius. That is 118 degrees Fahrenheit. I can't even

imagine anything that hot. The Saudi army has deployed more than 6000 personnel, including volunteers, to deal with any heat-related health


GOLODRYGA (voice-over): We should get used to these type of headlines as we're approaching the summer months. The sweltering heat has forced Greek

officials -- remember this last year?


Once again, they're shutting down one of the country's most populous landmarks again today.

ASHER (voice-over): Yeah, the Acropolis was initially closed on Wednesday from noon until 5 P.M. That is the hottest part of the day, of course.

Other nearby tourist attractions are closed today, as well, as temperatures rise above 40 degrees Celsius.

GOLODRYGA (voice-over): Meantime, back here in the U.S., too much rain is the problem in Florida. Torrential downpours over the past few days have

turned streets into canals in the Fort Lauderdale and Miami areas. Flights to and from the area have also been impacted. Hundreds of flights have been

interrupted today, according to FlightAware.

ASHER (voice-over): Yeah, this was a scene in Fort Lauderdale on Wednesday. The city saw about a month's worth of rain in just one day,

actually. Many people were forced to abandon their cars as they basically tried to drive through mini-rivers.

UNKNOWN: It's crazy. I've seen people walk in the water all the way up to their waist. Small cars, they're not making it. We've seen over 50 cars

just in the middle of the highway.


ASHER: Small cars, they are not making it. Right now, more than eight million people are under flood watches and warnings as more rain is

expected to swamp the area. Carlos Suarez is joining us live now from a rainy, very rainy Fort Lauderdale.

Carlos, just walk us through what you're seeing because, you know, there's no sort of end in sight in the immediate sort of few days. We know that

there is more rainfall expected on both Thursday and Friday.

CARLOS SUAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's exactly right, Zain. So, we have had a bit of a break when it comes to some of the rain. But as you noted,

the forecast is calling for more rain this afternoon and into tonight and into Friday, meaning that the flooding that you're taking a look at here is

probably not going to get a whole lot better anytime soon.

We are in a neighborhood in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. That is in Broward County. And this city here received well over a foot of rain in the last 48

hours. Now, we should have some aerials giving you kind of a broader look at just how bad of a situation things have been across parts of South


The last couple of days, we saw a similar scene play out down in Miami-Dade County. That is home to the cities of Miami and Miami Beach, as well as

Aventura. In those places, we saw anywhere between six to eight inches of rain.

Now, across the state of Florida in southwest Florida, that is home to the Naples and Fort Myers area, folks there have been drying out since about

Tuesday and Wednesday when about a foot of rainfall really accumulated there. And we saw some pretty significant flooding.

Now, as a result of all of this rain and flooding, Florida's Governor Ron DeSantis, he declared a state of emergency in five counties here in

Florida, including Broward County, as well as Miami-Dade County. And what that allows is for state and local resources to start working together to

try to get some of this water out. They try to move some staff members, as well as some equipment into some of these neighborhoods, all in an effort

to try to push some of this water out.

Now, we were in this very neighborhood back in April of 2023 when a similar system moved through the area, except at that time, more than two feet of

rain fell across parts of Fort Lauderdale over about a 48-hour period. And so, right after that happened, city officials out here tried to mitigate

things moving forward.

They installed new drainage systems. They bought additional water pumps. And they had all of this in place in anticipation that we're going to see

more and more of these types of weather events take place. But as you can see here behind me, despite this new drainage system, despite having these

water pumps on standby, ready to go, it is really difficult to get that amount of rainfall in that short period of time and try to move all of this

water out.

And so, officials really are telling folks, we're still not out of the clear here. We've got rain this afternoon. We've got additional rain

tonight into Friday. And so, the expectation is right now that we're going to look at another two to three inches of rain come tonight. Zain?

ASHER: All right, Carlos Suarez, no end in sight, as I mentioned. There's a lot more wet weather for the Floridians, especially in the southern part

of Florida, to deal with right now.

GOLODRYGA: Yeah, clearly, you can't really mitigate for it. It's very, very difficult. And one month's

ASHER: --worth of rain in one day. Unbelievable.

GOLODRYGA: Well, the Supreme Court has dealt a blow to anti-abortion activists. We'll take a closer look at what the justices just decided and

how it will affect patients going forward.




ASHER: All right, welcome back to ONE WORLD, I'm Zain Asher.

GOLODRYGA: And I'm Bianna Golodryga. Let's now take a closer look at our top story. The U.S. Supreme Court has thrown out a lawsuit over the

abortion pill Mifepristone. The justices unanimously decided that the doctors and anti-abortion activists had no standing to sue in the first


ASHER: Right, so for now, doctors can still send Mifepristone in the mail to patients without an in-person visit. While this is certainly a setback

for anti-abortion activists now, the ruling does leave the door open for future lawsuits.

GOLODRYGA: Yeah, let's bring in CNN medical correspondent Meg Terrell for more on this. So, as we noted, Meg, obviously a win for abortion supporters

here and access to Mifepristone, which had been approved by the FDA as a safe drug to use for decades.

But that specific issue is not what the Supreme Court decided on, the expansion of the FDA allowing for Mifepristone to be sent via mail. It was

strictly about whether there was standing from the plaintiffs. So, walk us through what this means going forward on this specific issue.

MEG TIRRELL, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, well, so they didn't even get into the merits of the case. The idea that these plaintiffs didn't have

standing doesn't mean that some plaintiffs in the future might not have standing. So, folks are not resting easy on the abortion access side of

things because they expect this challenge could potentially come back.

But what we know today is that nothing is changing in terms of accessing medication abortion. Medication abortion is the most common way that people

access abortion in the U.S. It accounted for 63 percent of abortions in 2023. It's approved by the FDA up to 10 weeks of pregnancy and it comprises

two drugs, Mifepristone and Misoprostol. And Mifepristone was the one at issue here. Studies have shown that it is a very safe regimen to use.


The complication rate is something like 0.3 percent. And so, its safety is accepted by the medical practice here in the United States. Now, if this

had gone the other way, this would have restricted access to medication abortion but not taken the drug completely off the market. We know that

there are several states in the U.S. where abortion is banned completely. There are additional states where there are restrictions on abortion.

In those states, it is still legally difficult to access abortion, even through telehealth, which is a big way that people get access to medication

abortion now. We have data that show 19 percent of all abortions in the U.S. as of December 2023 were through telemedicine. And so this would have

made that a lot more difficult, even in states where abortion is legal right now, guys.

So, nothing is changing as of right now with access to these medications. But people do expect that these challenges to Mifepristone and medication

abortion are likely to continue through multiple routes, guys.

GOLODRYGA: Yeah and as we noted earlier in this hour, there's another abortion case decision that we're expecting to hear from the Supreme Court

over states versus federal rights pertaining to a strict law in Idaho. So, we will be waiting for that as well. Meg Tirrell, thank you.

TIRRELL: Thanks.

ASHER: And of course, there is absolutely a political impact to this ruling. Let's bring in Stephen Collinson to talk a little bit more about

that. So, one of the things that's key here is that Donald Trump spoke today, right? His first time back on Capitol Hill since January 6th, and he

did touch on abortion.

His words to Republicans was, follow your conviction, but be smart about how you talk about abortion. Just explain to our audience what that means,

especially in the context of what happened today with the Supreme Court ruling.

STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN POLITICAL SENIOR REPORTER: Well, I think that Donald Trump might be advised to follow his own advice because he's been

all over the map on abortion. The former President has been trying to claim credit for creating the conservative Supreme Court majority that overturned

the constitutional rights on abortion two years ago, but he's been trying to insulate himself from the political impact of that, which is the chaos

that this created across the country.

This Supreme Court ruling today is the justices trying to deal with some of the uncertainties that their original ruling brought up. Democrats are

trying to -- every time there is a ruling by a conservative court or a conservative legislative parties anti- abortion law, they're trying to say,

this is Donald Trump's fault. And it's a powerful argument because we've seen in previous elections that this is a driver of turnout for Democrats.

Trump's position officially is that leave this issue to the states, but that doesn't get him off this political hook. That's the reason the

Democrats are using it. And it's one of the few issues, in fact, where President Joe Biden has the greater trust of the public and a higher

approval rating than Trump.

So, every time abortion is in the news, I think it's bad news for Trump. And a lot of Republicans, especially those that need to win female votes in

swing districts, are having a very difficult time navigating it.

ASHER: All right, Stephen, do stay with us. Stick around, because we actually do want to get your take on another top story that we're


GOLODRYGA: A lot of development is happening today.


GOLODRYGA: G7 leaders have agreed on a new package of loans to Ukraine, but there is a unique twist this time.

ASHER: That's right. The money for the loans will come from assets seized from Russia. The U.S. and Europe have frozen Russian assets worth hundreds

of billions of dollars. This latest move is part of President Biden's effort to present the West as united just in terms of its support for

Ukraine, though there are some concerns that recent and upcoming elections could change that.

GOLODRYGA: Yeah, part of the Western support for Ukraine is a desire to back a democracy and part of the world dominated by autocrats.

ASHER: And -- but and this may shock you, there is growing push among supporters of Donald Trump to say that America itself is not a democracy.

That is what some supporters of Donald Trump are saying. CNN's Danielle Sullivan has been attending Trump rallies all over the country and has this

report on why Trump supporters are rejecting a word that has essentially defined America for generations.


SULLIVAN: What happens if Trump loses?

UNKNOWN: I don't see him losing.

UNKNOWN: I don't think he lost the last election, to be honest.

SULLIVAN: Do you think he's going to win?

UNKNOWN: Yes, without a doubt.

UNKNOWN: No doubt.

O'SULLIVAN: What if he doesn't this time? What happens to the country?

UNKNOWN: We're in trouble. We're in big trouble. We're done. Biden talks about democracy, you know, saving democracy. You know, saving democracy.

They're the ones that are killing democracy.

O'SULLIVAN: Obviously, there's a lot of criticisms of Trump that he is bad for democracy, that he's bad for American democracy.

UNKNOWN: Can I say something? We are a republic.

UNKNOWN: We're a republic.

UNKNOWN: We are not a democracy.

UNKNOWN: We are a representative republic. We're not a democracy.

UNKNOWN: One thing we've been hearing at Trump rallies like this over the past few months is that America isn't really a democracy.

UNKNOWN: America's not a democracy as a republic.

UNKNOWN: It's not a democracy.


Okay, democracy is actually not as good as you think it is.

UNKNOWN: But for centuries, America has celebrated its democracy.

RONALD REAGAN, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: Democracy is worth dying for.

GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER U.S PRESIDENT: Democracy remains the definition of political legitimacy.

O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): But some Republicans and pro-Trump media are pushing the idea that America is not a democracy.

UNKNOWN: The United States of America is not a democracy. We are a constitutional republic.

REP. MIKE JOHNSON (R-LA): United States of America is not a democracy. You don't want to be in a democracy.

UNKNOWN: We are not a democracy. We are a republic.

O'SULLIVAN: Is America is a democracy?

ANNE APPLEBAUM, AUTHOR "TWILIGHT OF DEMOCRACY": America is a democracy. It was founded as a democracy.

O'SULLIVAN: I've heard a lot of conspiracy theories. I hear a lot of things out on the road. But to hear Americans, people who would describe

themselves as patriots, say that America is not a democracy, that stopped me in my tracks.

APPLEBAUM: You are hearing people say America is not a democracy because there are people around Trump who want them to be saying that, who've been

planting that narrative.

O'SULLIVAN: Is America a democracy?

UNKNOWN: I don't -- I think we're a republic. Well, not right now, but we're -- yeah, we're a republic.

O'SULLIVAN: What's the difference?

UNKNOWN: I feel like democracy -- let me think this through. That is government control. I don't see freedom in democracy. I see freedom in the


APPLEBAUM: Honestly, the word democracy and the word republic have often been used interchangeably. There isn't a meaningful difference between


O'SULLIVAN: So much of the warnings and criticism about Trump is that he is a threat to democracy, that he is anti-democratic.

APPLEBAUM: Absolutely. If they can convince people that we don't have a democracy, then it's okay that Trump is attacking democracy, because it

doesn't really matter.

O'SULLIVAN: So, why -- like, why has democracy become a bad word?

UNKNOWN: Because it's being used in a way to change the flavor of our country, which is a republic.

APPLEBAUM: These words were used in different ways in the 18th century. And it's true the founders didn't want direct democracy, by which they

meant people gathering on the town square. They wanted representative democracy.

But I think the reason why this conversation about language has arisen now is because there is a part of the Republican Party that would like to rule

as a minority, and they need an excuse for why that's okay. And so, they have begun to say, we're not a democracy, we're a republic. And it's not

100 percent clear what that means, but I think they mean, we want Donald Trump to be able to do whatever he wants.

O'SULLIVAN: Some people I've been speaking to at Trump events recently --


O'SULLIVAN: -- have been saying, America is not a democracy, it's a republic.

UNKNOWN: We've always been a democracy, first of all. I mean, we used to have freedom of speech, freedom of religion. We used to have that, too.

Now, they're picking on the Christians and the Jewish people. I mean, how much more can we take?

O'SULLIVAN: Are you concerned if Trump loses --


O'SULLIVAN: That there will be another January 6th?

UNKNOWN: No, I think there will be a civil war. That's what I think will happen. I think it's going to be the Dems against the Republicans. That's

how I feel.


GOLODRYGA: Wow. Really disturbing words to end on there. But clearly, Donie has hit a nerve with a lot of Trump supporters there. I'm not saying

that's every single person that supports Trump or that speaks for the Republican Party.

But Stephen Collinson, this does represent a significant number of U.S. voters right now who have convinced themselves, yes, the United States is

not a democracy, it's a republic. And as we heard from Anne Applebaum in her view, and I think there's some merit there, to get more insight from


That leads them to then be able to say Donald Trump can do whatever he wants. And I can't help but think of what he has said a few times, perhaps

in jest, that he's going to be a dictator for just one day, and that's day one, once he's inaugurated, if he does win again.

COLLINSON: Well, I think this speaks to the power not just of Trump's demagoguery, which has been amplified in this specific moment in time by

all the impact you can get through social media, but also the conservative media machine.

It's very interesting when you go to a Trump rally, for example, you talk to people, you hear exactly the same messages that are coming out of Fox

News, conservative talk radio, the online far-right sphere, and people repeat that stuff.

Once, Trump really defined what he was doing, it was in, I think it was 2018, he went to a Veterans of Foreign War convention, and he told his

crowd, what you are seeing and what you are reading is not what's happening. In essence, believe me, don't believe the media.

I mean, that was literally Orwellian. Orwell wrote in 1984 that the most effective tool of the party was to get people to ignore the evidence of

their eyes and ears. You know, this debate over republic and democracy has been percolated on the far-right think tanks and talk radio and places for



You know, a republic is a representative form of democracy. It was defined by Abraham Lincoln in the Gettysburg Address as government for the people,

of the people, for the people, by the people. You can go and read it on the wall of the Lincoln Memorial if you don't understand what it means.

But I think Ann Applebaum is right. The people around Trump and his supporters in Congress, they're already preparing for a moment when Donald

Trump might not win the election, but they still want to wield power. And this is all part of creating that internal logic and narrative that would

enable them to do that.

ASHER: It's fascinating, isn't it? Because just last week, President Biden at the G7 was talking about how important democracy is. And even though he

didn't mention Trump by name, Trump was there in the background, metaphorically, as Biden intimated just how much of a threat that he

believes that -- or Biden intimated just how much of a threat that he believes that Trump poses to democracy. Just to pivot slightly, obviously

Biden right now at the G7.

I was talking to Ambassador Bolton just a moment ago saying that, look, so many things are up in the air, especially when it comes to the U.S.

elections. We don't know what is going to happen come November. How much meaningful progress can President Biden make in terms of his decision-

making at the G7 when the next few months are anyone's guess? I mean, everything is on the table come November.

COLLINSON: Right. It's a really interesting moment in international politics and the internal politics of the West. I think what a lot of this

G7 is doing with particular reference to Ukraine is trying to almost lock in future U.S. and Western support for Ukraine.

We're going to see this also at the NATO summit later in the summer in Washington, that it would be more difficult for Trump and perhaps right-

wing leaders in Europe, if they get more influence after the parliamentary elections on the weekend, to turn their backs on Ukraine. The problem is,

is that Biden is not going to sign a treaty with Ukraine. It's not something that can be ratified by the U.S. Congress.

Trump could come in and if he decides that he wants to cozy up to President Vladimir Putin, for example, he could undo a lot of what is being done in

terms of long-term support for Ukraine economically and militarily at this G7 meeting. So, that is the backdrop of this.

To your point about Biden and democracy, I think one of the hard issues for Biden is when you talk about democracy for many voters, it's almost an

esoteric concept. It's hard to grab hold of. I think Democrats need to do a much better job of explaining to people what it would be actually like if

their democracy is taken away, what it would be like if an American voter lost the right to choose the person they want to be President.

I think there's a real need politically to boil this down to much more understandable terms, because as you were showing there with Donie's piece,

you know, it's easy to demagogue the word democracy itself.

GOLODRYGA: Yeah, and it's much easier to focus on inflation and higher prices at the grocery store than, as you said, perhaps an abstract at this

point, something we clearly haven't experienced here in the United States in our history, but something that's clearly, you know, in many people's

views on the ballot in November. CNN Politics Senior Reporter Stephen Collinson, thank you.


ASHER: Thank you, Stephen. All right, coming up, unimaginable suffering in Gaza. UNICEF spokesperson James Elder describes his experiences there and

what he witnessed at a hospital there when we come back.




ASHER: All right. Turning to the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza, UNICEF's global spokesperson James Elder is describing his experiences in the Palestinian

territory torn apart by conflict for the past eight months.

GOLODRYGA: Yeah, in a post on Instagram, Elder recounts a single day in Gaza. He says it took him 13 hours to go just 40 kilometers and that he

spent eight hours at checkpoints. He says, despite approvals, his truck carrying medicines and nutrition supplies for 10,000 children got turned


ASHER: I talked to James Elder earlier about the plight of children in Gaza and the health care system, which is on the verge of collapsing,

hospitals barely functioning. I want to show you part of that interview.


JAMES ELDER, GLOBAL SPOKESPERSON, UNICEF: Zain, Al-Aqsa yesterday was like returning to day one of this war. It was literally walking with physicians

or running with physicians as they sought to treat children, but also running over children with the wounds of war. Children with bomb blasts to

their head, children with burns, children with shrapnel.

Such was the just sheer number of people. As you rightly point out, there has been a systematic devastation to the health system here. Thirty six

hospitals, not one is fully functioning. Not one. There's a handful that are partially functioning. So, Al-Aqsa, where I was, was already

overcrowded and heaving before it had 400 casualties with those violent wounds of war over the weekend.

So, we're losing children. Children are dying that shouldn't die, even beyond the bomb, simply because doctors cannot possibly cope among this.

So, returning to that scene, it was a scene of parents screaming. It was a scene of doctors running. And it was a scene of death. We just keep

returning to these same things time and again.

As I say, this is now 250 days into this. Despite heroic efforts from those doctors, there is a lot of heartache, a lot of parents whose lives have

been irrevocably changed because their children are no longer with us.

ASHER: Yeah, and one of the things that really sort of strikes me about the war in Gaza is that it's almost become a cliche at this point in time

to say that nowhere in Gaza is safe. We know that. It's become a cliche, but it's a cliche because it's true. Nowhere in Gaza is safer at this point

in time. It wasn't so long ago that we were told that Rafah was safe.

And then there was an operation in Rafah. And a lot of people in Rafah went to central Gaza. And then we saw what we saw over the weekend at the

Nuseirat refugee camp, in which at least 100, obviously, the numbers are disputed at this point in time, but at least 100 Palestinians were killed.

I'm getting alerts on my phone right now, essentially saying that there is another operation happening right now in Rafah. So, based on that, just

walk us through the level of desperation, right, that even a U.N. school, even a refugee camp is not safe. Where do Palestinians go at this point in


ELDER: They don't know where to go. So, there's so many layers to that question, Zain, that the mental trauma of people now who've moved four or

five times and tonight, yes, as you say, there's an operation. I don't know if you just heard gunfire.

Now, there's drones. The operation is, the limits that we're told are around one mile from where we are here. We don't know any more other than

those people have been told to evacuate. We, too, have to work out where do we actually, where do you seek to go? So, people have learned, sadly, that

the safe places get bombed, their homes get bombed, that the schools, as you rightly say, get bombed.

Today, Zain, my mission was around nutrition, which taking a single truck of approved medical and nutritional supplies to the north. We spent nine

hours at checkpoints. This is a pre-approved mission, nine hours of military checkpoints.


The truck with supplies, medicines and nutrition for 10,000 children was turned back. While we waited at checkpoint, two fishermen were shot dead on

the beach. This is a 13-hour mission to go 35 kilometers. This is the reality of any normal day in Gaza. I don't know what else happened where we

weren't able to bear witness to it.

But no, to revert to where people go, they know they don't have anywhere safe. Children now look in their parents' eyes and they know that their

parents can no longer protect them. Parents are also aware of that. This is a fearful realization for a child and a heart-breaking thing for a parent

to also come to understand that they know, they can no longer protect their child.


ASHER: Extremely powerful words there from James Elder. Just really good at articulating what is happening on the ground and giving that personal

perspective in terms of what he himself has witnessed. Once again, that was James Elder, global spokesperson for UNICEF.

GOLODRYGA: He's made countless trips there, risking his own life, as well. And we'll be right back with more.


GOLODRYGA: I'm going to take you to a bit of a fun moment there at the G7 in Puglia, Italy. If you're wondering what those leaders are looking at the

sky and watching, they're actually watching a skydiving demonstration. There you see skydivers coming down with different flags representing the

G7 nations. This is something that --

ASHER: Something that you don't see every day.

GOLODRYGA: A bit of a lighter moment for the leaders.

ASHER: Yeah, this is a nice moment of levity, obviously. You know, they've been talking about the U.S. providing security assistance, signing that

long-term agreement with Ukraine. So, this is a nice moment of levity. You see Giorgia Meloni. I can see Trudeau. I can see Ursula von der Leyen

looking up. I think some of them already landed, but there they are coming down in the sky. So, after this, they're going to have a G7 family photo.

GOLODRYGA: Biden and his famous traditional aviators. It looks like a pretty day there in Italy. Nice and fresh air for the leaders before they

get back to work.

ASHER: Like, golf course in Pruvia.

GOLODRYGA: Yup. Well, feeling the love, BTS K-pop star Jin spent his day hugging 1000 fans in Seoul after completing his mandatory military service

in South Korea. The lucky fans were selected from a raffle video from social media like this one showed ecstatic fans lining up on stage to hug

Jin inside a Seoul arena. He also held a concert.


Listen to two fans talk about their experience.


UNKNOWN: It was -- I'm still having a bit of an out-of-body experience. It was completely unreal. My daughter was with me and she told me, oh, that's

fake. That's not true. Because I've entered these things several times and they've never, I mean, what are the chances, right? So, it was amazing. And

I'm still sort of floating.

UNKNOWN: Thank you for everything. Thank you for the music. Thank you for giving me this beautiful community, this beautiful family full of love.

ASHER (voice-over): Yeah, this is Jin departing a military base.

GOLODRYGA: Prince Harry type of enthusiasm, right?

ASHER: After he completed his service, BTS is expected to reconvene as a group around 2025 after other members of the group complete their required

military service that is mandatory in South Korea.

GOLODRYGA: I love the multi-generation fans too --

ASHER: Getting lots of love.

GOLODRYGA: -- from moms and young --

ASHER: This idea of hugging a thousand -- a thousand fans, he's incredibly loved.

GOLODRYGA: Yeah, he is. Well that -- you are incredibly loved as well, Zain.

ASHER: She just had to get that in.

GOLODRYGA: You are. Thanks so much for watching this hour. Look at the skydivers coming down too fast.

ASHER: We're ending on that guys.

GOLODRYGA: Thanks for watching.

ASHER: I'm Zain Asher. "AMANPOUR" is up next.