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State of the Union
Man on the Run; Interview with Sen. Chuck Schumer, Interview with Sen. Rand Paul; Border Security Push
Aired June 23, 2013 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN Breaking News.
CANDY CROWLEY, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Candy Crowley in Washington with the breaking news we're following. Admitted NSA leaker, Edward Snowden, is on the move. He left on a flight from Hong Kong overnight and may now be in the air over Russia. We want to go to Moscow at this point and bring in CNN's Phil Black.
Phil, thanks for joining us. Tell us what you know right now about, "A," whether Snowden is headed there and where he may be headed to.
VOICE OF PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Certainly, Candy. I'm at Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport where we understand that Edward Snowden is due to arrive on a flight from Hong Kong in a little over an hour's time. That's when he's going to arrive here. That is according to the WikiLeaks organization that has said that it has assisted him in leaving Hong Kong and finding asylum in a third country, a Democratic country, they said.
And they said he's en route to their country via Russia and Moscow. The question now is what will happen to him once he arrives here? Is he in contention to stay here? If not, will he transit somewhere else? How long will he be here and so forth? These are things we are not sure just yet. As we say, he's expected due on a flight here in around an hour's time. And then from there, we will get some sense of just what his next steps are.
So far, the Russian government isn't saying anything except they are aware of the media reports that he is inbound to the Russian capital. They are not revealing precisely what they know of his intentions or what they will allow him to do once he gets here - Candy.
CROWLEY: So, Phil, it sounds as though he may be using Moscow as a layover to somewhere else. What are the possibilities of what the Russian government could do? I'm assuming they'd love to talk to him about whatever he knows about NSA surveillance in Russia. I'm assuming they could also just go to the airport and take him in for an interview.
BLACK: It's certainly a possibility. You would imagine that he's someone that's very interested in talking, too, about intelligence matters. The question is, I think, will they take advantage of that situation should he arrive here? Will they seek to interview him, spend time with him, find out more about what he knows. Will they assist him? Will there be consequences, you would think, diplomatically if Russia would try to do so?
So, I think, it is a question on whether or not Russia is prepare to hurt its relationship with the United States in return for the possible benefits that they could gain by keeping him here, talking to him here. Russia has always been on the short list of countries that it is thought Edward Snowden could flee to to stay beyond the reach of the United States if he wanted to do that, but Russia has always said that it would only consider an asylum and would consider it based upon the facts.
So, Russia has been very noncommittal about just how it would approach Edward Snowden should he make a formal request to come here or should he actually show up on their front door as we believe he may be doing today -- Candy.
CROWLEY: Now, before too long, we will know. All right. Thanks to Phil Black.
We will be back with you. We want to go to the White House now and our correspondent, Dan Lothian, who is live from the North Lawn. Dan, the administration really have sent out some pretty strong signals to Hong Kong that they wanted this guy extradited. The Hong Kong clearly did not extradite him, but perhaps, sent him on his way. What's the reaction?
DAN LOTHIAN, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well we're getting the first reaction from U.S. officials in a statement from the justice department.
It reads, "as we stated yesterday, the United States had contacted authorities in Hong Kong to seek the extradition of Mr. Snowden based on the criminal complaint filed in the eastern district of Virginia and in accordance with the U.S.-Hong Kong agreement for surrender of fugitive offenders. We have been informed by the Hong Kong authorities Mr. Snowden has departed Hong Kong for a third country. We will consider to discuss this matter with Hong Kong and pursue relevant law enforcement cooperation with other countries where Mr. Snowden may be attempting to travel."
This is, obviously, not the way that this administration wanted this to all play out. In fact, just yesterday, national security adviser, Tom Donilon, was sounding somewhat confident in this request to have Snowden extradited back to the U.S. from Hong Kong, saying that the U.S. and Hong Kong has this treaty and that they have historically had a good arrangement or been a good partner when it comes to law enforcement issues.
They fully expected that Hong Kong would comply with the treaty. Now, this raises all kinds of questions about the relationship that the U.S. thought it had with Hong Kong -- Candy.
CROWLEY: It does, indeed. And also, it raises a lot of questions about what an extradition treaty is worth, but nonetheless, we also know that the NSA -- head of the NSA is out in about this morning. Has he had anything to say about this? LOTHIAN: That's right. And this is the person, Keith Alexander, who's been on the hot seat now for quite some time, having to answer a lot of these tough questions about the U.S. surveillance programs, has defended it saying that more than 50 plots have been thwarted because of these surveillance programs. So, he was on ABC's "This Week" this morning.
He was asked about how Snowden could have even left Hawaii in the first place. He really couldn't answer why no red flags or no alerts went off. But he did refer -- referring to him as an individual said that Snowden had betrayed the trust and confidence that the U.S. has in him. He said, quote, "He's not acting with noble intent."
Mr. Alexander was also asked about this letter that Hong Kong says that it has sent to the U.S. to clarify these reports about hacking of Hong Kong computers, China computers. He would not address that specifically but said that the U.S. has the interest of collecting intelligence regarded to U.S. interest but not in collecting data from all around the world.
So, clearly, some tough questions that the administration will continue having to answer with regards to how Snowden was able to leave the United States in the first place and how he was able to leave Hong Kong despite this request to have him extradited back to the U.S.
CROWLEY: Lots and lots of questions. Hopefully, we'll get some of them answered today. Dan Lothian, thank you so much.
I now want to bring in our senior international correspondent, Nic Robertson. Nic is in Hong Kong. Nic, I just get the feeling -- and, you know, tell me whether I'm right or wrong -- that Hong Kong didn't actually want to be -- have the choice be the anger of its own people who don't like being spied on by the NSA and the United States that wanted this guy extradited, so they put him on a plane. Is that feasible?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It is in a way, certainly. I mean, look, Hong Kong authorities felt they were between a rock and a hard place. Good extradition agreements with the United States, procedures gone well in the past, in this particular case, on their other shoulder, they've got Beijing. Beijing, clearly, has been accused by the United States recently of cyber hacking.
And now, Beijing is learning and getting publicly in its face from Edward Snowden details about how this hacking was going on. Today, more details about how 1.1 billion mobile phone subscribers in China were having their text messages hacked by the NSA as well, according to Edward Snowden. That was reported in a newspaper here as well.
So, that's where Hong Kong has found itself, between a rock and a hard place. So, this was, perhaps, the easiest get out for you, if you will. One lawyer who's been watching this case closely here told me he was shocked that the Hong Kong government had done this, because all they needed legally in Hong Kong to put an arrest warrant out for Edward Snowden was to know that he was wanted for prosecution in the United States and that he was in Hong Kong. Both of those, this lawyer said, were very clear, Candy.
CROWLEY: Nic, while you've been talking, we've been showing a little bit of some of the demonstrations. I know some took place last week in Hong Kong in support of Edward Snowden. What can you tell us about, you know, China and the actual reaction on the streets to Snowden? Is he the hero or is he the traitor? That's the conversation here in the U.S.
ROBERTSON: You know, he's a nobody for a lot of people here, Candy. That's the bottom line. You know, one lawmaker here told me, and she was at one of those rallies in support of Edward Snowden. She said, look, most people here just think he's a crazy foreigner, landed in this country, put out this information. And, you know, for a lot of people, the fact that he's moved on, that's going to be it.
That rally last week, Candy, I was there. There were about 300 people, about a third of them were journalists. You know, just a week before, there was another rally over the Tiananmen Square in 1989, lots of Chinese people killed there by the army. There were between 50,000 and 150,000 people at that rally.
Edward Snowden just doesn't rank on the radar for most people here. Human rights activists, yes. The average person in Hong Kong barely noticed -- barely has noticed him, Candy.
CROWLEY: Nic Robertson in Hong Kong. We'll be talking to you throughout the day. Thanks so much.
When we return, New York senator, Chuck Schumer, on what he thinks f the current state of affairs about Edward Snowden.
CROWLEY: Joining me now, Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer of New York.
Senator, I know you have a big week coming up with immigration reform and I do want to talk to you about that. But I first talk to you about the news that's breaking now. And we have this situation where Hong Kong, with whom the U.S. has cordial, in fact, good relations and an extradition treaty, has let Edward Snowden fly out presumably to Moscow and then points unknown.
What do you make of that?
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER, (D) NEW YORK: Well, first, very disappointing what Hong Kong has done. It remains to be seen how much influence Beijing had on Hong Kong. As you know, they coordinate their foreign policies and I have a feeling the hand of Beijing was involved here.
What's infuriating here is Prime Minister Putin of Russia aiding and abetting Snowden's escape. The bottom line is very simple, allies are supposed to treat each other in decent ways, and Putin always seems almost eager to put a finger in the eye of the United States, whether it is Syria, Iran, and now, of course, with Snowden. That's not how allies should treat one another, and I think it will have serious consequences for the United States-Russia relationship.
CROWLEY: OK, then let me follow up with this, Putin's relationship to Snowden landing in Moscow, you believe it had to have been approved by the Russian president?
SCHUMER: I believe so. Something at this level in a state-controlled country, the minute Aeroflot got the notification he would be coming, I believe that Putin, it's almost certain he knew, and it's likely he approved it.
CROWLEY: So if there will be consequences -- and we know there are lots of things on which the U.S. and Russia disagree, but it's not the Cold War anymore. Why would he allow Snowden to come?
SCHUMER: You know, I always -- it seems to me that Mr. Putin is almost eager to stick a finger in the eye of the United States. In so many different areas he does not cooperate. Very few are the areas in which he does cooperate these days. And I think this action, Putin allowing Snowden to land in Russia and then go somewhere else, is going to have serious consequences for U.S.-Russian relationship.
CROWLEY: And just could you tell me a couple of what those -- what serious consequences?
SCHUMER: Well, who knows? We have all kinds of relationships with Russia, and in some ways works out pretty well. We're trying to mutually reduce the number of nuclear arms that each country has. But there are many different kinds of relationships that are both political, diplomatic, economic. And I don't think we can just shrug our shoulders and say this is how Putin is.
CROWLEY: And do you think right now there are U.S. diplomats on the line with Russian diplomats saying, you need to hold that guy and extradite him to us?
SCHUMER: I absolutely it's very, very likely that we are asking Russia to hold him. Whether Russia does that or not, I don't know. but the fact that they were allowing him to land indicates we're not in a phase of cooperation pretty much for sure.
And you know, Snowden -- look, let's look at Snowden here. You know, some might try to say that, oh, he's a great human rights crusader. He is not at all like the great human rights crusaders in the past, the Martin Luther Kings or the Gandhis who did civil disobedience because he -- first, he flees the country. A Daniel Elsburg, when he released the Pentagon Papers because he thought it was the right thing to do, stayed in America and faced the consequences.
But second, he's hurt other people. You know, a Gandhi or a Martin Luther King didn't hurt other people as they did their resistance, and they faced the consequences.
So I don't think Snowden in any way can be compared to those people and should not be made a good guy, hero, or anything like that by anybody. CROWLEY: And finally on this subject, senator, are you concerned that watching a man the U.S. really thinks has exposed government secrets, who has been charged with spying and with theft of government property, as we sort of track him around the world, are you worried that the U.S. looks kind of powerless to stop this one guy?
SCHUMER: Well, let's wait and see. You know, diplomacy has its funny ways of working, and sometimes it takes a little while. So I wouldn't prejudge that yet.
CROWLEY: OK. Now, let's get to immigration reform. You've got a big vote coming up. I know that you agreed to and will vote on first this new border security plan that is going to double the force that is along the border that will also put 24/7 drone surveillance along the border. Will it buy you the 70 votes you'd like to get?
SCHUMER: Well, look, this is going to be a historic week for the senate as we pass comprehensive immigration reform. We're about at two-thirds of the Senate right now. Our momentum is growing. So I believe we'll be in the neighborhood of 70 votes by the time the vote occurs at the end of the week.
And I do believe that having a significant number of Republicans will change the dynamic in the House. Individual congress members from red districts, if they see their senator has voted for, and they decide to do the right thing. There will be huge pressure on Speaker Boehner not to block immigration reform because that would consign the Republican Party to minority status. And we have all kinds of allies who are usually conservative pushing for this bill -- the business community, the high tech community, the evangelical community, the Catholic bishops, the growers throughout the country.
So I believe that at the end of the day, Speaker Boehner will have to bring a bill, either the Senate bill or something much closer to it than people think, to the floor of the Senate, even if it means abandoning the Hastert rule. He will have no choice as the pressure mounts over the summer.
CROWLEY: There is a difference between the speaker bringing it to the floor and his being able to corral some of his conservatives. There's a delicate line there, as you saw, when it was the farm bill was defeated by this kind of coalition of Democrats who were furious that it did too much and Republicans who thought it didn't do enough. There is a real chance that this could die in the House. Would you concede to that?
SCHUMER: Well, no, I think there will be pressure on Boehner to bring a bill similar to the Senate bill. If it's similar to the Senate bill or the Senate bill itself, he might even have to do that, You'll get most Democrats voting for it, and you will get a good number of Republicans, even if not a majority.
And I think the pressure is going to mount.
You know, Candy, this has the potential of becoming the next major civil rights movement. I could envision in the late summer or early fall, if Boehner tries to bottle the bill up or put something in without a path to citizenship, if there's no path to citizenship, there's no bill. But if he puts something, if he tries to bottle it up or do things like that, I could see a million people on the mall in Washington, on the platform would not be the usual suspects, but the leaders of business, the leaders of the evangelical movement, the leaders of high tech, as well as most Americans pressuring the House to act.
I think they're going to have to act whether they have a majority of Republicans or not.
CROWLEY: Senator Schumer, thanks for being patient with us on this breaking news day.
SCHUMER: It's okay. No problem. Thank you.
CROWLEY: I really appreciate your time.
SCHUMER: Thanks, Candy.
CROWLEY: When we return, the conservative Kentucky senator on whether Russia will cooperate with the U.S. and return Edward Snowden. Senator Rand Paul is next.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN Breaking News.
CROWLEY: Back to our breaking news, WikiLeaks is reporting that NSA leaker, Edward Snowden, has landed in Russia. We want to go back to CNNs' Phil Black who joins us on the phone from Moscow. Phil, what can you tell us?
VOICE OF PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Candy, I can tell you the flight that Edward Snowden is said to be on from Hong Kong has arrived here at the Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport. Assuming he's on it, the question now is, what will he do? I'm standing in the arrivals area of this airport along with a large force of Russian and international media who are here just in case he happens to walk out this door and declare his intention as to what he's going to be doing here in Russia.
It's also possible, and perhaps, more likely, that he will stay inside, that he does not, in fact, have a visa to cross the Russian border, and he will take a connecting flight out of here to yet another destination. So, at the moment, we understand the flight that WikiLeaks organization says he's on has landed. As I say, we now like to see what he does and how the Russian government will respond.
CROWLEY: So -- and I want to just point out to our viewers that we're looking at pictures of the terminal. We believe this is where Edward Snowden would come if, indeed, he gets off the plane and comes into the airport. So, he either is going to come off and say, I want to stay here in Russia or he's going to get on a plane and head somewhere else. Phil, would you look at this situation -- I was just talking to Senator Schumer who said to me that he believes that Putin had to approve the arrival of Snowden. Do you think that's so?
BLACK: I think that would be very true (ph). The decision of that nation would go right to the very top of Russian politics, and it's not something that would be left to lower officials here, because depending on Russians' actions (ph) here, it could very well have a very profound effect on Russian-U.S. relations, certainly, in the nature intelligence cooperation and so forth between the two countries, which is something these two countries have been struggling to improve and make headway on, particularly, in light of the Boston marathon attack.
So, I have no doubt that whatever Edward Snowden's course of action is and however Russia chooses to respond will be decided at the very top within the (INAUDIBLE).
CROWLEY: Thanks so much. That's our Phil Black at the airport in Moscow where we believe Edward Snowden's plane has just landed. I want to move on now -- thanks, Phil -- to Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky. He is joining me from Bowling Green.
Senator, what do you make of this flight? What do you make of the fact that Russia is allowing him in and that Hong Kong let him go? What does that tell us?
SEN. RAND PAUL, (R) KENTUCKY: You know, I'm not sure what it tells us, but I think it's going to be an open question how this young man is judged. I do think that when history looks at this, they're going to contrast the behavior of James Clapper, our national intelligence director, with Edward Snowden.
Mr. Clapper lied in Congress in defiance of the law in the name of security. Mr. Snowden told the truth in the name of privacy. So, I think there will be a judgment, because both of them broke the law, and history will have to determine. I do think for Mr. Snowden, if he cozies up to the Russian government, it will be nothing but bad for his name in history.
If he goes to an independent third country like Iceland and if he refuses to talk to any sort of formal government about this, I think there's a chance that he'll be seen as an advocate of privacy. If he cozies up to either the Russian government, the Chinese government, or any of these governments that are perceived still as enemies of ours, I think that that will be a real problem for him in history.
CROWLEY: So, you are sympathetic to Edward Snowden. I wonder if you heard Senator Schumer say earlier, this guy is no hero here. He is not, you know, some Martin Luther King telling the truth civil rights kind of guy, that he, in fact, whether you like it or not, there are laws there, and he released information that he was not supposed to release. So, do you think he shouldn't be prosecuted?
CROWLEY: What do you think?
PAUL: No. I'm not saying that. But what I am saying is that Martin Luther King was kept in jail and accused for 30 days. I think he was never threatened with life in prison. And so, the penalties are disproportionate to it. So, I think you can't quite compare them. But I would say that Mr. Snowden hasn't lied to anyone.
He did break his oath of office, but part of his oath of office is to the constitution, and he believes that when James Clapper came in March, our national director of intelligence came and lied, that he was simply coming forward and telling the truth that your government was lying.
And this is a big concern of mine because it makes me doubt the administration and their word to us when they come and talk to us because they have now admitted that they will lie to us if they think it's in the name of national security.
CROWLEY: I believe that Director Clapper has said that, when he said the U.S. didn't spy on Americans or gather information wittingly, that he was talking about the PRISM program, but I want to move you on --
PAUL: No. He admitted that he lied, and he said he was saying the least of untruthful things. So, he did admit that he lied.
CROWLEY: OK. Let me move you on here because I want to ask you about the immigration reform bill that you're going to vote on this week, probably twice, first for the border security amendment and then for the bill as a whole. How are you going to vote?
PAUL: I'm all in favor of immigration reform, but I'm like most conservatives in the country, that I think reform should be dependent on border security first. So, i introduced an amendment that would have done just that. Border security first and then immigration reform --
CROWLEY: -- defeated.
PAUL: -- with Congressional checks on whether or not it's occurring. That wasn't voted in favorably. And so, without some Congressional authority and without border security first, I can't support the final bill.
CROWLEY: So, you're a no despite the fact they are pouring $30 billion worth of border patrol -- they are doubling the size of the border where we're told that illegal entry is way down. They're going to have 24/7 drone coverage of the border. Does that not tell you the border is going to be secure?
PAUL: It may, but we've thrown a lot of money at a lot of problems in our country. To me, what really tells me that they're serious would be letting Congress vote on whether the border's secure. If the people in the country want to be assured that we will not get another 10 million people to come here illegally over the next decade, they have to believe they get a vote through their Congress. If this is a done deal once the bill's over and it's a done deal, we never get to revisit it because it will be very difficult, I don't think we'll really get a truly secure border. The other part of a secure border is you have to have a functioning work visa program. This bill puts new caps and allows less workers to come in to pick crops. That's where the illegal immigration is coming from. This bill will actually make that problem worse.
CROWLEY: Senator, part of the problem, of course, that people say of having Congress be able to say, yes, it's secure. Go ahead and let's start legalizing some of the folks that are here, is that Congress is a pretty political place, and if you leave something that you think is a matter of numbers up to Capitol Hill, they will make it about politics. So if you put it in the hands of, say, homeland security --
PAUL: And you think the president -- you think the president's not political? Recently he released 1.3 --
CROWLEY: Well, he's the president.
PAUL: Well recently this president released $1.3 billion to Egypt because he says they're obeying democracy. That was a week after they indicted 16 Americans for doing democracy work over there. So I don't trust this administration or a Republican administration to really make a valid judgment. I want Congress and the people to have the right to decide whether the border is secure. Is that political? Yes, we live in a democracy, a Democratic republic. It will be political no matter whether it's the president or congress.
CROWLEY: And, senator, what do you say to those, including an editorial in "The Wall Street Journal" that say, they are just people who are against immigration reform, who don't want immigration reform, and are going to use border security as the excuse. What do you say to that criticism?
PAUL: That wouldn't be me because I'm all for immigration reform. I'm for lessening the caps. I think the bill has too strict of caps, and that's why we'll get more illegal immigration. Right now there are no caps on agricultural worker visas. This bill is going to put a cap of 110,000. People tell me 300,000 to 400,000 are going to come in every year to pick crops. If you only let 110,000 in legally, that means you're inviting 300,000 to come in illegally every year. This bill doesn't work on work visa program which is part of border security.
CROWLEY: Is it going to pass the House? Yes or no?
PAUL: It will pass the Senate, but it's dead on arrival in the House. The House is much closer to me, and I think they think border security has to come first before you get immigration reform.
CROWLEY: Senator Rand Paul, thank you so much for your patience this morning. We appreciate your time. When we return, Snowden and how it will play here in D.C. Our political panel is next.
CROWLEY: Hi, I'm Candy Crowley here for a special edition of STATE OF THE UNION. We are very closely watching what's going on in the Moscow airport. We believe that the plane carrying Edward Snowden, the NSA leaker, from Hong Kong to Moscow, those are pictures of it earlier. We believe that Edward Snowden is on the ground in Moscow. Where he goes from there, we're not sure. We have a man on the scene, and we are watching that closely.
In the meantime, joining me around this table, Dan Balz, chief correspondent for the "Washington Post." Stephanie Cutter, Democratic strategist and CNN contributor. Kevin Madden, Republican strategist, CNN contributor. Dana bash, CNN's chief congressional correspondent. Hi, guys.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Good morning.
CROWLEY: Yes, exactly. Let me start with this. Yesterday, I believe it was yesterday, Nancy Pelosi was giving a little talk in friendly territory, the San Francisco area, and brought up, in fact, about Edward Snowden and here's what she said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), MINORITY LEADER: As far as Snowden -- and I may be in disagreement with you -- he did violate the law in terms of releasing those documents. We don't know --
I understand. I understand. But it did violate the law.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CROWLEY: Here's my theory. This is a huge P.R. problem for the administration, that Edward Snowden has become a P.R. problem because you do have this feeling, not just in the United States by some people, but sort of across the world by some people that this guy did exactly what he should have done.
DAN BALZ, NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, "THE WASHINGTON POST": Well it is a P.R. problem and has been since this erupted. I think that events today may recalibrate that somewhat because now he's in flight. We don't quite know where he's going. The other aspect of this is the fact that he's now out of Hong Kong and now presumably in Russia. Adds another element of embarrassment to the administration, or frustration to the administration, which clearly, I think, thought yesterday that Hong Kong was going to cooperate.
CROWLEY: They certainly did, Stephanie, talk as though Hong Kong is going to do this and we have this treaty, and the next thing you know, not only did Hong Kong send him on his way but Russia said OK. It does make the administration look powerless.
STEPHANIE CUTTER, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well I think, first of all, we're just watching this in real time. We have to see how this plays out. There's a long history of cooperation between Hong Kong and the United States. So clearly, this was some sort of a violation. We don't know exactly what happened in terms of whether Putin was involved in getting his visa. He clearly knew this guy was coming to his country. I think Putin is probably trying to make the most out of this problem for the United States, which is very Putin-like.
And you know, it's -- you said this is a PR problem. Yes, it's a PR problem, but I think the administration is looking at it more as a national security problem, which is why they're trying to prosecute this guy. He has put this country under threat. I mean, al Qaeda is passing around his power point online, and they're telling, you know, al Qaeda operatives not to use certain internet systems because the United States will catch them. That's a real problem for this country.
CROWLEY: And yet, Kevin, there are people, not just young crowds, you know, booing Nancy Pelosi, but there are people like Rand Paul saying, I don't know. Don't judge this guy so much right now. History may look at it differently than that he went against his country.
KEVIN MADDEN, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Well, that is what has been interesting about this from the start is that it's been a debate that hasn't broken down among the clean partisan lines that we're so used to here in Washington D.C. But I think Dan's point is right that because right now you have somebody who is in flight and is cooperating with WikiLeaks, the profile of Edward Snowden is about to change.
I think it's a long way -- excuse me -- it's a long way from being decided on where he's finally going to end up, and that will also have a huge impact on it. But it has definitely changed the way folks are going to look at this.
CROWLEY: Just quickly, we want to tell our audiences that the pictures you're seeing are live pictures from the Moscow airport. This is the entry point. So, in fact, they may -- we may see Edward Snowden, we may not. We're watching it. Dana, to you, despite all of this, do you see anything happening in Congress that would change the program that has become so controversial?
DANA BASH, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Not really. It really not -- They are becoming -- just look at what you just played. Nancy Pelosi, one of the most openly and proudly liberal members of Congress defying her base, saying, you know what, this guy broke the law. And then you, of course, have lot of Democrats and lot of Republicans, most of them frankly, who say they think that for all of the talk, all of the controversy, that this program, both of these programs are actually working.
What we might see are some kind of tweaks around the edges. A lot of frustration about the fact that this guy, who was a contractor, had such access to America's secrets, a way to change that. But when it comes to the overall idea of these programs and giving the government the ability to look at internet sites abroad, to look at phone records, probably not.
CROWLEY: Have they made the case to either one, do you think, that this really has been damaging?
CUTTER: Putting national security at risk?
CUTTER: You know, I think that that's just starting. What you saw last week was many members of the administration, including the national security team, coming out and talking about what this program means to our security. The terrorist acts that they were able to stop. I think that's just starting. Things have to get declassified. This is going to be a process, but you can see that starting, and I really do think that's going to have an impact on public opinion.
MADDEN: You know, that was one of the things, I think, that a lot of frustration was that the president didn't make a stronger case in the very beginning. But you know, even as a partisan, I believe he made a strong case when he was interviewed this week on Charlie Rose and he talked about.
CROWLEY: Right. I'm going to ask you all to hold on. We're going to take a quick break. I'll let you watch the Moscow entry terminal while we take a break. We'll be back.
CROWLEY: Welcome back. That, as we all know by now, is the arrival area at the Moscow airport. We believe that Edward Snowden, the man who leaked all that intelligence information from the NSA and then took off for Hong Kong, has left Hong Kong. We think his plane is in Moscow.
So, this is the camera that should catch him should he come through the arrival doors. We are watching it.
In the meantime, let's get back to the panel, because there's other issues out there, and one of them is immigration. I had Chuck Schumer on this morning saying they have to pass this over in the House. And, we hear Rand Paul Saying, they're not going to pass this over the House. It's dead-on-arrival in the House. Which is it?
CROWLEY: Your turn.
DAN BALZ, CHIEF CORRESPONDENT, WASHINGTON POST: Well, it's certainly not going to sail through the House. We know that. And I think given what happened with the farm bill in the House on Thursday, we know that even --
CROWLEY: Went down in big defeat.
BALZ: A 70-vote margin in the Senate is not going to guarantee smooth sailing in the House.
CUTTER: Well, I think, though, that this is up to Boehner, and Boehner has to decide whether or not he can count on Democratic votes to get this through. And I think that if he lets go of this Hastert rule, which he has vowed to Republicans that he wouldn't -- the Hastert rule that says he has to get a majority of Republicans to pass legislation, if he lets that go and passes it with a coalition of Democrats and Republicans, it will get through the House.
CROWLEY: That was the jury on the farm bill, wasn't it? Get a coalition going.
MADDEN: Yes. And Boehner is a different type of speaker. He's not somebody who's going to write bills and dictate rules from the speaker's office. This is going to let the House --
MADDEN: Look, it is a very, very, very challenging environment right now in the House. They have a much different fundamental approach on this issue. They want to break it into pieces and they want to do it small. They don't believe -- as one House aide once told me if it's called big or if it's called comprehensive, it's not making its way through the House. So, there are great amount of challenges here for the bill.
BASH: Yes. And I think it's important to look at why. It's not just that Boehner is being, you know, difficult or anything else. It's if you've looked up the makeup of the House, then House Republicans and the political realities that they're dealing with. A republican aide sent me this statistic, which I think says it all. Of the 232 House Republican seats, there's an average of 11 percent Hispanic vote in their districts. It's very, very small. So, that's number one.
Number two, they're not looking at the Republican Party's future in a big picture like a Marco Rubio who wants to maybe me president or, you know, Boehner or others. They're looking at their viability in their own seats and they're in very red districts. Their concern is not being defeated by a Democrat, it's being defeated by a conservative, primary by conservative, who because they say that this whole thing is amnesty. So, that's the political reality here.
And I talked to another source, who said that they're really worried about the fact that, at the end of this week, everybody is going to go home for July 4th recess, the Senate will have passed this immigration bill and in every district, it's going to look a lot like it did in 2009 with all the health care rallies. And then they're going to get pounded and they're going to come back and say no way.
MADDEN: And just real quickly to that point and to Chuck Schumer's point earlier, that there's going to be this big march on Washington, I do think people want to see immigration reform, but there's not a huge swell of support for this particular bill.
Folks want to see reform but they don't want to just see something that's called reform pass. I mean, the details do matter.
(CROSSTALK) CANDY CROWLEY, CNN HOST: It's been going on since the '90s. I mean, sooner or later, you got to --
STEPHANIE CUTTER, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST AND CNN CONTRIBUTOR: There is broad support for this bill. There is broad support -
CROWLEY: I think what Schumer --
CUTTER: I think what Schumer was talking about --
CUTTER: -- in 2006 and 2007, there will be marches. I think Hispanic Americans are incredibly well organized and we will see them come out. There will be a lot of anger if this bill does not get through the house.
BALZ: I think there's another element of this, too, which is easily overlooked because we're so focused on Republican concerns about the border piece of it, it seems to me that the more this bill moves in that direction, the more danger there is that you lose Democrats on it.
CUTTER: So far that has not been the case.
BALZ: So far that has not been the case.
CUTTER: It has to be watched.
BALZ: But we saw -- again, we saw that on the farm bill.
MADDEN: We saw it a lot on the farm bill, too. I mean, look, there are substantive differences up on Capitol Hill already. But now what we have is lacking and this is particularly a problem for the White House that wants to forge coalitions on this issue.
There is a great lack of trust, a lack of trust between Capitol Hill and the White House, and then also between the warring --
CROWLEY: The American public.
MADDEN: -- factions up on Capitol Hill.
CROWLEY: And Washington.
CROWLEY: I want to combine two subjects here. One is we know the president is giving a big climate change speech this week. And I wonder what's coincidental to this poll, which came as CNN ORC poll, 18- to 29-year-olds, the president's approval rating has dropped almost 20 points since May.
What's happened here?
BALZ: Well, I mean I think if you look overall at the president's standing, given everything that's happened, the erosion has been pretty minimal if you look across all of the polls.
CROWLEY: Right, in the totality of it.
BALZ: And I'd make another point, which is when you look at subgroups, they can bounce around a lot. So perhaps he's down in the CNN poll with young people. That could bounce back up over time. So I don't think we want to put too much into that.
But there's no question that he's in a rough period now. I mean, all of these controversies will take some kind of toll.
CROWLEY: And so it says what about chances for climate change?
BASH: Well, I'm sorry, Stephanie, but as Sarah Palin would say, I think for young people in particular, the hopey changey thing is really important. And the idea of all of these scandals -- sorry --
CROWLEY: You can hit (ph).
BASH: -- all of these scandals that have been plaguing this president erode the whole idea of trust and the fact that this guy is different.
CUTTER: And I think that is not particular to the president. I think that a lot of what we're seeing in the CNN poll -- and I don't believe that there's been a 17 point shift with youth. That's virtually impossible. But I think that there is a lot of angst against Washington. Nothing is getting done. Congress is at 10 percent. You know, the president's approval ratings --
CROWLEY: He also has those. I have got to stop at the hearing. Everyone comes back and Dan Balls, Stephanie Cutter, Kevin Mann, Dana Bash, thank you.
When we return, man on the run: where is NSA leaker Edward Snowden headed next?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CROWLEY (voice-over): So you are looking at earlier pictures, you know, five, 10 minutes ago, from the arrival area in the Moscow airport, where we believe the plane of Edward Snowden has arrived. For the latest on his whereabouts and his plans, we want to go to CNN's Phil Black, who joins us on the phone now from Moscow.
Phil, what's developing there?
PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Candy, there is a large media pool here, international and Russian journalists here, waiting and talking to passengers as they come off and out of the customs area here at Moscow Sheremetyevo (ph) Airport.
We've spoken to a couple of passengers who say, yes, they believe they saw Edward Snowden on that flight, the same flight as them, from Hong Kong here to Moscow, which would seem to confirm what the WikiLeaks organization has said, and that is that it has organized this flight from Hong Kong to Moscow.
The question now is what happens to him here? Or where precisely does he go from here?
He has not yet emerged through the passenger area here, so we presume that he is perhaps still inside and that perhaps his intention is to move on, to catch another connecting flight to some other third country, Candy.
CROWLEY: So if he hasn't -- just quickly -- if he has a connecting flight, he wouldn't necessarily go through here, is that correct?
BLACK: That is correct. I think it is safe to assume that he doesn't have a Russian visa. They're not handed out quickly or easily. So he's probably staying airside, it would seem, in which case you'd have to think he's moving on to another country.
CROWLEY: OK. Thanks so much, Phil Black in Moscow for us.
CNN, of course, will be following this story. As developments warrant, we will bring them to you as soon we have them. Stay with us throughout the day for continuing coverage of Edward Snowden's whereabouts.
Thank you so much for watching STATE OF THE UNION. I'm Candy Crowley in Washington. Head to CNN.com/sotu for extras. "FAREED ZAKARIA GPS" is next.