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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Pope Francis Arrived in the United States; Pope's Politics; Trump Says He's Boycotting Fox News. Aired 8-9:00p ET
Aired September 23, 2015 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[20:00:13] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: And good evening from Capitol Hill. Thanks very much for joining us.
What a day, what a night and tomorrow, just steps from where I'm standing, Pope Francis will make history again. He's going to address a joint meeting of Congress, a first for lawmakers and a first not just for the pontiff but for the entire papacy as well.
He arrived just moments ago back to Vatican residence. You see it there received as you can see by the look in people's eyes, very warm greeting after what was a very long day.
Now, before we get in to all of that, we just got a great pair of photos from the White House photographer, Pete Zusa (ph), one a smiling president and smiling Pope shaking hands this morning in the oval office. The second, a smiling Pope and two Portuguese water dogs, first dogs, Beau and Sunny. We don't know if they are smiling or not or whether they are aware of how big a moment they are now a part of.
No Pope has ever done what this Pope will do tomorrow nor done what he did today.
COOPER (voice-over): Five minutes before 9:00 a.m., the Pope began his day doing what those around him say he loves, getting close to his followers. Outside the Vatican ambassador's residence, Pope Francis eventually got into his fiat and his motorcade departed for its first of many stops today, the White House.
Eleven thousand people had been invited to the south lawn to welcome the Holy Father. As the pontiff's fiat pulled up, President Obama and the first lady received him. The president and the Pope listened as first the national anthem of the Holy Sea was played. Followed by the Star Spangled Banner, the Pope's head bowed as President Obama placed a hand over his heart.
And as the two leaders prepare to speak, the pump (ph) circumstance led to politics, first with the president.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We are grateful for your invaluable support for our new begins with the Cuban people which holds out the promise -
OBAMA: Which holds out the promise of better relations between our countries, greater cooperation across our hemisphere and a better life for the Cuban people.
COOPER: He also weighed in on climate change sharing sentiments echoed by the Pope.
POPE FRANCIS, CATHOLIC CHURCH LEADER: That climate change is a problem which can no longer be left to a future generation.
COOPER: Pope Francis also touched on the international refugee crisis, the immigration debate in America and income inequality. As the ceremony ended, the president, first lady and Pope waved to crowds from the south portico balcony for a meeting between the two leaders.
From the White House, the papal motorcade wound through the streets of Washington as thousands came out to witness history. The Pope in a retrofitted jeep wrangler waved, smile and even stopped at several points to kiss children who were brought to him.
From there, it was on to St. Matthews cathedral to address 300 bishops and he didn't shy away from the sex abuse scandal that has rocked the church in recent years.
I have supported your generous commitment to bring healing to victims he said, to work to ensure that such crimes will never be repeated.
Later on in the afternoon, Pope Francis arrived to Catholic University to an estimated crowd of 25,000 to celebrate his first mass in the United States. The Pope also canonized Spanish missionary Junipero Serra, credited with spreading Christianity in California. In already historic visit to America, it was the first canonization on U.S. soil.
The ceremony at the basilica of the national shrine of the Immaculate Conception, the largest basilica in North America ended as it began with much fun fare. It was that, the Pope's first full day in America was complete.
COOPER: What a day it was. We're joined by CNN senior Vatican analyst John Allen, also Father Thomas Rosica of the Holy Sea press office.
John, one of the things I saw you wrote earlier today, there is that we're seeing the emerging of Pope Francis 2.0. What do you mean by that?
JOHN ALLEN, CNN SENIOR VATICAN ANALYST: Well, what I mean is that at the beginning of this papacy, I think the popular narrative was to sort of say Francis is this hip maverick reformer who is trying to shakeup a church, in other words, trying sort to pit him against the church, saying he is almost like the anti-church. COOPER: And against his predecessor.
ALLEN: And against his predecessor, right? So the narrative was - you know, the old narrative was everything you don't like about the Catholic Church is because of the Pope. The new narrative was everything you don't like about the Catholic Church is in spite of the Pope, right? And he benefited from that early on because it allowed him to establish a kind of independent charisma. But what's happened as time has gone on, is it's began to bog him down. It has bogged him down inside the Catholic Church for people who don't feel that he has their best interest of heart.
[20:05:11] COOPER: Right. There has been some push back from conservatives and others.
ALLEN: Yes, sure. Anyway, so I think what we see happening here and it has been building, but I think we are seeing it kind of rolled out in full form here is a Pope who is trying to do two things. One, he was trying to correct impressions of himself as an ideological leftist. We heard him on the plane on the way to the state say I'm not a lefty.
And you heard him today in the speech with the president. Yes, there were issues with the cut left, immigration and climate change. But also issues that cut right, you know, defensive of marriage and religious freedom and so on. And so I think that's one bit of it.
And the other bit of it is he has been very clear, you heard him on the plane saying I'm not imposing my own views. I am speaking to the social doctrine of the Catholic Church and you heard him with the bishops today saying I speak not in my own voice but also the voice of my predecessor. So I think the message he's trying to say is if you don't like me, if you disagree with what I'm saying, then what you're really disagreeing with is the official doctrine of the Catholic Church.
COOPER: Father, do you agree with that? Because I mean, when you look at actual doctrine of the Catholic Church what the Pope is saying is completely in line with traditional doctrine of the church. He's not changing church doctrine. He is perhaps putting greater emphasis on flexibility and mercy but it's essentially the same.
FATHER THOMAS ROSICA, CSB, HOLY SEA PRESS OFFICE: He's changed nothing but he has provided a completely new vocabulary, lens and frame work with which to transmit these teachings. I think what he asked us to do is look at the difficulties we have had in getting his teachings across. A lot of them are not so much resistance from the people, but it is the way we presented them.
He tells us very clearly, speaking through the bishops. And the language of mercy can do a lot more good in transmitting a message than hitting people over the head. And the way that the bishops talked today was particularly wonderful talk, a method of teaching, a method of encouraging his brothers, but also a method of inviting people to go a little further. He praised the United States. He praised the church of the United
States for the great contributions to the world. But he said we got to go a little further now. We got some other work to do. We have a massive refugee crisis and now we have to open up our doors in our hearts even wider because this is going to cause us to change and he identified himself as the son of immigrants, immigrants who came here and built this very country. I think that resonated with many, many people in the audience.
COOPER: It was, John, fascinating to hear him at the White House today. I mean, the range of topics he discussed, as you know, I talked about it earlier, is very unusual for an individual speaker of the White House.
ALLEN: Well, sure. I mean, you and I can come up with a list of 100 people at the top of our heads who might come to the White House and discuss the defensive marriage and religious freedom. We can do the same thing for people who would come and talk about immigration and climate change. But to imagine people who would come and talk about all of those things at once, giving you know, more or less equal emphasis to all of them, that's a pretty short list.
And I think what it illustrates is not just with this Pope, and in some ways the catholic social teaching generally, it just completely defies the left, right divides in American politics. And I think it is going to be very fascinating, particularly when he's in that building tomorrow talking to Congress. To see if people are really willing to set aside their ideological filters and sort of reflect on the totality of what he's saying or if the minute he's done, the game of spin will begin.
COOPER: Father, what does it mean, I mean, so much is placed on his humility, on his, you know, the vehicles he travels in, his emphasis on mercy, on flexibility. Not so much the rules but mercy and reaching out to people in a nuts and bolts way, what does that mean for bishops in the United States, for pastors in the United States?
ROSICA: What he's telling us very clearly with those choices, these are not photo opportunities. These are not cute symbols that he's passing along, style is substance. The substance that he's communicating is hey, guys, everybody, look at the way you're living. Do you need all that stuff? How much is associated with your identity?
To be a bishop, he said today very clearly, is to be a father figure who calls forth life who doesn't produce bureaucrats, but who calls people forward with a mother's heart to bring people -- and the language, the symbolism in that tells us everything counts for him.
I don't think there is one thing calculated in what he is doing. He's doing what he always done. He lived this simplicity in life. And I don't think a lot of people pointed that out before he got to Rome. He was just doing this. He may have been considered an odd ball for doing that. But he gets to Rome and suddenly, this becomes a great teaching device. And everybody is saying, hey, do I need this big car? Do I have to live like this? Do I have to live like a prince? He is telling us there is another way to do things because that's the way he's constantly done it. And he is not beating people over the head with it.
COOPER: And John, I mean, when we saw him, we are just looking in the Pope mobile, you get the sense that we have seen in the past, he likes to interact with the crowds. How difficult do you think it was it for him not to be out there along that route, you know, walking the line with people?
[20:10:00] ALLEN: Well, I'll come to that in a minute. First, I just echo what Father Thom just said. I know a guy in the Vatican motor pull who tells me that nobody will check out the Mercedes anymore. They all want the Ford focus because that's what the Pope take.
COOPER: I love that you know a guy in the motor pull of the Vatican.
ALLEN: And this is what come the Vatican feed.
Listen, you know, there has been an arch with Pope Francis, at the very beginning when he was elected. He would just utter sort of defy security protocols and just plunge into crowds willy-nilly.
You know, I said on our air, you may remember shortly after his election, that the whole world may be turned with this guy but his security team is not. Sales of hard medicine were off the charts at the Vatican pharmacy. He has had to become a little bit more controlled. And if you notice, he is much more willing to allow that form around him and the kind of steer him because you know what argument worked for him, not that he was putting himself at risk, that's not what that it, it is that he was making life harder for the people whose job it is to protect it.
COOPER: John Allen, it is always great to have you. We are going to talk to you later on. Father Rosica, as well. Thank you both. Always been a pleasure. It has been a long day for you, I know as well.
More on that subject, very real question of how to reconcile the contact this Pope enjoys with people wherever he goes and keeping him safe.
And later breaking news, new polling in the race for the Republican nomination, there are some shake ups, as well, details ahead tonight.
[20:15:04] COOPER: Welcome back.
Pope Francis left the Catholic University campus not too far from here. He traveled back to the Vatican's diplomatic residence, again, by way of a fiat about as far removed from one of his bulletproof limo as you can find in Washington or just about anywhere else. That's one reason security professional have been spending so many sleepless nights lately.
There is another, spontaneous moments like this, in this case a little girl, 5-year-old Sophie Cruz, rebuffed by security, the first time she tried to approach the pontiff. Second time he invited her over.
According to "Washington Post," Sophia, the child of undocumented immigrants gave this drawing in message to Francis, it reads, my friends and I love each other no matter our skin color. The Pope seeks out and cherishes moments like that.
However, like so many others, there was a moment remembers of his security detail to worry about.
For more on the unique challenges that Pope Francis present, we're joined by CNN's Tom Foreman.
Tom, we talked yesterday how hard this might be for security team, and today, I mean, it showed some of the reasons why.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, absolutely. This whole obscene- less and calm but there were undeniably moments, particularly in hot zones where the security was so high like the one in the White House where security agents were scrambling to maintain position and keep the Pope safe from the sea of the people.
So while you see pictures like this from the White House, where all we is calm, this is what was going on not far from there. These security gates opened up at 4:00 in the morning trying to go through this massive screening of everybody around the pontiff. Same thing when he rode out around the White House.
We saw pictures like this, thousands of smiling faces waving hands, but look down the street here. Look at the huge presence of vehicles around the Pope to keep people back. Look at the number of officers here and they are not just covering a quick movement from a vehicle into the building. Every time he moved, he was exposed for many long minutes to tens of thousands of people both here and later at the basilica.
And if you think about it, Anderson, the only time we see something like that generally with the president is during his inauguration. So in recent weeks, many barriers have been erected, some things like light poles and parking meters were removed, fences put up, all to make it look like a relaxed setting while maintaining strict limits of who could get close to the Pope, Anderson.
COOPER: I mean, that even extends in many cases to invited guests.
FOREMAN: Yes. It really does. And this is quite the thing to see. Think about it when he was actually inside some of these buildings and these are all people who have been invited to be here. And yet, if you look closely, you can see security, security, security all over the place. And in many cases, you see like this woman reaching out here with her hand, in many cases you can see them actually gently taking those hands and pushing them back. So maybe the Pope looked very calm in the middle of all of this. But I can guarantee you, Anderson, there were dozens and dozens and dozens of people around him who were not.
COOPER: Yes. Tom, I appreciate that. I want to bring in two people with a lot of experience protecting
presidents and the Pope alike. Former secret service agent Dan Bongino and former Vatican Swiss Guard and current professor at the Catholic University of America, Andreas Widmer.
Andreas, thanks very much for being with us. How difficult a job is it giving close protection to the pontiff when, especially, it's somebody who is known for wanting to be there with the people?
ANDREAS WIDMER, FORMER SWISS GUARD FOR POPE JOHN PAUL II: Yes, and it is not -- the Swiss guards are used to this. So I can't really compare it. I've never protected a president. But in the Swiss guards, this is something that is an everyday thing. You see the security for a Holy Father is not the same as for a president.
COOPER: Because there is a balance between security and also continuing the ministry.
WIDMER: Exactly. We have always been taught that what you want to do is to allow his ministry and optimize security around that. So the fact that there, you know, he drives along and he stops and he kisses children and he blesses people, that's something that just comes with being Pope. If you take that away, you don't let him be the Pope anymore and we don't do that.
COOPER: Dan Bongino, I mean, from a secret service stand point, it's obviously a different kind of priority. The priority I'm assuming the secret service would air on is the side of security.
DAN BONGINO, FORMER SECRET SERVICE AGENT: Right. And we don't have to worry about ministry in our case. But yes, it's a unique problem with this Pope, Anderson. If I had a kind to triage the issues, and problem I need security-wise, of course, would be his randomness.
You know, what the president of the United States who has a commensurate threat level, he's not random. When we tell the president, you know, if the president says I want to stop at a lemonade stand, for example, who wanted to look extemporaneous, we set that up in advance. There is no jumping out of the car, nothing happens randomly.
With this Pope, and really, God Bless him, I really respect his bravery for putting his own personal security second. You never know. I mean, he could jump out in a crowd that we're not prepared for in advance. Next thing you know all the agents are scrambling to look for hands because hands shoot, not eyes. So, there are very unique problems with this Pope.
WIDMER: Of course, we deal with this differently. You see, for us, the randomness is actually safety.
[20:20:02] COOPER: Because it's hard --
WIDMER: It's so random but you don't know it's happening. And we're a much smaller core. There is only 115 of us. And so, we can actually handle him -- we can handle the very close protection. And if he does something that's totally unexpected, it's much less dangerous than say him being at noon every Sunday at the window or the Wednesday audience. If he does something very unexpected, for us, that's more secure.
COOPER: There are so many scenes, though, I have seen where people hand him things. I mean, I saw someone handing him pizza once, dropping by, people handing him a commission drink. That has got to be a moment of concern.
WIDMER: Yes. And usually, they are not handed directed. We are trying that he wouldn't handed directly to you - to him.
COOPER: So one of the guards would take that.
WIDMER: Take that. Same with the children that you basically grab the children first or bring somebody up and while you do that, you can make sure that nothing wrong is going on.
COOPER: And Andreas, I mean, the -- obviously, I don't want to talk about anything that is inappropriate so use your judgment. But the Pope mobile, obviously, it is open on the sides. That's got to be - I mean, in the ideal security world, he would be completely encased.
WIDMER: Well, I mean, think about it, Anderson. In the security world he wouldn't be doing this, right? And so, there is again the optimization. You cover the front which is the strongest danger and then you leave open the side and you put people on the side.
Most of what we did and what we do is to protect him with our bodies. And I think that's the close, you know, the close protection. A lot of the protection around, like in St. Peters Square, I mean, there are metal detectors so we can, you know, make sure that the people who get in there are somewhat screened. Of course, on a route like this when the Pope is out on the open street, that's not possible. But here in the United States, I think the security has been absolutely fabulous from what I've seen.
COOPER: And Dan, certainly the secret service here in the United States, and I've talked to the NYPD and chief of counterterrorism just the other day, Chief Waters. I mean, they study very closely every past attack, every past plot against the Pope and others to learn each time. I mean, there was not only, you know, the shooting of John Paul. But there was a plot in the Philippines to use some people dressed as priests, people dressed as in clerical guard that they could possibly get close. That was the plot that was foiled. But all of those are studied, correct?
BONGINO: Yes, I'm actually glad you brought that up. Because one thing about the secret service is that they have no problem by taking corrective action. After the Reagan shooting, Anderson, we never did an open arrival or departure if we didn't have to again. We always arrive in a tent with the theory being you can't shoot what you can't see. With the gas attack in Panama on George Bush 41, we developed a new hammer program. So yes, we learn from all of our mistakes and they have changed the protection model each time.
COOPER: Dan Bongino, it is great to have you on. Andreas Widmer, really pleasure. Thank you so much.
WIDMER: Thanks for having us.
COOPER: Just ahead on his first full day in the U.S., Pope Francis mixed faith and politics weighing in on some of the most hotly debated issues and obviously in the presidential race.
There is breaking news tonight, a FOX News poll on the GOP race for the White House. See how Donald Trump and others are now doing.
Plus Trump's feud with FOX yet again heating up.
[20:27:18] COOPER: Welcome back tonight from Capitol Hill where tomorrow Pope Francis will make history when he speaks before Congress. This was the pontiff's first full day, as you know, in the U.S. And what an incredible full date was.
The top of the hour, Francis canonized a saint, the first time that has happened on American soil. He also celebrated his first mass in the United States. But he started his day at the White House where he plunged into two highly charged political debates, faith colliding with politics.
Suzanne Malveaux has details.
SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For a man who says he's not political, it took just two sentences for Pope Francis to make what many saw as a political statement today at the White House.
POPE FRANCIS: As the son of an immigrant family, I'm happy to be a guest in this country which was largely built by such families.
MALVEAUX: That subtle reference to U.S. immigration policy along with more blunt statements about climate change, have many of the same conservatives who wanted the Pope to come to Washington, now nervous about his historic visit.
REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: There is one thing we know about this Pope, he's not afraid to take on the status quo or not afraid to say what he really thinks.
MALVEAUX: House speaker John Boehner is a practicing Catholic who personally invited the pontiff to address a joint session of Congress. It is a huge moment for Boehner that could be embarrassing depending on what the Pope says.
BOEHNER: I can tell you this, I'm not about to get myself into an argument with the Pope.
MALVEAUX: Traditionally, the Vatican has been in alignment with the GOP, particularly on social issues. But Pope Francis is far from a traditional Pope. The first Latin-American pontiff is using the papal pulpit to shine a bright light on issues affecting the developing world, issues embraced by many Democrats including immigrant's rights, climate change and economic equality.
OBAMA: We support your call to all world leaders to support the communities most vulnerable to changing climates and to come together to preserve our precious world for future generation generations.
MALVEAUX: This Pope has played a critical role in bringing the U.S. and Cuba together to restore diplomatic ties making him an ally of President Obama and alienating some Republicans.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: He is not a political figure. My interest an elected official is the national security of the United States and embedded in that is the belief that it's not good for our country or people of Cuba to have an anti-American dictatorship 90 miles from her shores.
MALVEAUX: Catholic Republicans like Marco Rubio and other GOP presidential candidates are trying to walk a fine line, praising the Pope while dismissing the parts of his agenda that liberals like.
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We will follow the lead of Pope Francis.
MALVEAUX: Democrats have their own disagreements with the pope, and the church's opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage. But even on some hot-button issues, Pope Francis has softened the Vatican's tone. He's called on Catholics to welcome and accept gay people, and recognize what he calls the quote, "precious support," same-sex couples provide for their partners.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He does not think that, you know, I'm a spiritual leader and I should not get involved in politics. He thinks he should be a prime mover in politics, before it even gets to the stage of legislation or policy or anything like that.
MALVEAUX: Democrats and Republicans will be eager to embrace what they can when the pope faces a Congress that's deeply divided, and in the early throes of a bitter presidential campaign.
Suzanne Malveaux, CNN, Washington.
COOPER: Joining me now is Ana Navarro, Republican strategist and supporter of Jeb Bush. She's also an adviser to other GOP candidates. You were at the White House today. Immigration, poverty, climate change, I mean, in the U.S. those are the political issues, but from the pope's point of view, they are moral issues, they are issues of faith. Should that give American politicians pause?
ANA NAVARRO, GOP STRATEGIST: Anderson, I'm not sure there is much that can give American politicians pause, but I am glad to hear your optimism. I think what they should get from this is spiritual nourishment. I
don't think that we should see the pope's visit in a strictly political spectrum. I know that's hard to do in the United States, particularly in an election cycle, and particularly in places like D.C. and New York. But yes, this pope is speaking from what is social policy, moral, ethics, from the teachings of the church, and, you know, we don't have to agree with him on everything. We just have to kind of embrace his message of unity and openness, inclusion, peace, mercy, and learn from the good lessons he's trying to teach us.
COOPER: It's interesting, because obviously the pope and President Obama do not agree on everything, same-sex marriage and other things, but they do agree on a lot, and that's a powerful alliance when and if they choose to put it on display. Like certainly the president did today.
NAVARRO: Listen, having the pope on your side is a lot better than having the pope against you. There are issues where they haven't agreed, like the religious mandate, the birth control mandate on Obamacare, like same-sex marriage, issues of life, but there are also issues where they agree, and I think that's the case for most politicians, I think that's the case for so many Catholics in the United States. We are in the U.S. mix and match Catholics, right? We don't buy the entire suit. We might buy the top and get the bottom from somewhere else, and maybe put on a different tank top with it.
So, you know, we just can't judge him as a Democrat or Republican. Remember, this is the first time this pope sets foot in the United States. He's not a partisan.
COOPER: It's just an extraordinary trip from so many different angles, and we'll be talking a lot about those different angles in the days ahead. Ana Navarro, thank you. Up next, we have breaking news, Fox News releases a poll on the GOP race for the White House just hours after Donald Trump goes on a Twitter rampage against Fox, which he says he's now boycotting.
COOPER: Breaking news tonight in the world of politics. Donald Trump says he will unveil his tax plan next week. He made that pledge tonight in Columbia, South Carolina. Meanwhile, a new poll out from Fox News shows Donald Trump maintaining his lead among Republican voters, with 26 percent, and Ben Carson is in second with 18, followed by Carly Fiorina and Marco Rubio each with nine, Ted Cruz with eight, and Jeb Bush with 7 percent support. Trump's lead is holding after the CNN debate where he gave very few specifics on his plans for his potential presidency, and in an event in Charleston, South Carolina earlier today, Randi Kaye spoke with Donald Trump and also asked his supporters about what draws them to him. Here is her report.
RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Donald Trump in Charleston, South Carolina, once again promising specifics.
Hello, Mr. Trump, Randi Kaye with CNN. A lot of people in the crowd wanted to hear some specifics today. Do you have any for them?
TRUMP: We'll be doing very big specifics next week, and I think you'll be very happy.
KAYE: They want to hear a tax plan, are you ready for that?
TRUMP: We'll be giving our tax plan I would say next week sometime in the early part of the week, we're going to have a phenomenal tax plan.
KAYE: More promises as he is greeted by the members of South Carolina's African American Chamber of Commerce, who invited him to speak. Trump wanted it all captured on camera.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (inaudible).
TRUMP: Hi, Steven, nice to see you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely.
TRUMP: Where is CNN? Come here, CNN.
TRUMP: I did them a quick favor, we said we would do a quick stopover, and I hear it is really nice. Right? That's great.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir. It is. Thank you for being here.
TRUMP: It's a great honor to be here.
KAYE: Why was it important to talk here today to this group?
TRUMP: Well, it's the Chamber of Commerce and African American, and that's something very important to me, and we just got some phenomenal polls from the African American people. As you know, we have a 25 percent poll, which is a fantastic number for a Republican, but we're going to do even better than that, so I'm very honored.
KAYE: What Trump did not mention was this September Gallup poll, showing that actually just 16 percent of African Americans have a favorable view of Donald Trump. Look closely, 72 percent have an unfavorable view. At the podium, again Trump only touted the poll that favored him.
TRUMP: Trump receives 25 percent of the black vote in general election matchup. It's unheard of. It's unheard of. And I have a lot of friends African Americans.
KAYE: It's unclear if Trump noticed how few African Americans came to hear him speak.
There aren't many African Americans here. Why do you think that is?
EDWARD NELSON, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Well, I'm here. That's big.
KAYE: That is big. Edward Nelson suggested maybe more black voters didn't turn out because they had to work or did not live nearby.
NELSON: The African American voter is the voter who really doesn't favor just the Republican Party, but you know, we have a tendency to believe that the Democratic Party primarily is the party, but when you check things out and you start listening to the candidates, I mean, your mind-set can change.
KAYE: Edward likes Trump's plan to build a wall and close the southern border. He and other black voters here believe stopping illegal immigration will help more African Americans find jobs.
DON CHAMPAIGNE, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I know what it's doing to really just our area, well, Charleston in general, as far as, you know, jobs, I mean, just taking jobs from some people who actually may need jobs.
KAYE: Do you believe what he's saying that he can accomplish it?
CHAMPAIGNE: I want to say I do.
KAYE: Before he spoke, we asked Trump if his plans would help create jobs for African Americans. Again, he brought up those positive polling numbers.
They are also very anxious to hear about immigration, because they think that your policy on immigration is going to open up jobs for African Americans.
TRUMP: I think that's very true, and I think that's probably why I'm polling so well with the African Americans.
KAYE: Which brings us back to the crowd. Even the head of the South Carolina African American Chamber of Commerce would not budge when we asked about the low turnout among black voters.
STEVEN GILCHRIST, CHAIRMAN, SOUTH CAROLINA AFRICAN AMERICAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: I think there are certainly a number of African Americans that are here. We've been overwhelmed with the number of people that have responded, both African Americans and non-African Americans.
KAYE: And what about the press? The media riser, normally jammed with cameras following Trump, only had about a handful, and the ballroom had hundreds of empty seats, not his usual draw of 18,000 plus, like he saw recently in Dallas. But what Trump lacked in attendance, he made up for in the enthusiasm for those who did turn out.
CHAMPAIGNE: I think he's one of the best salesmen I've ever seen.
KAYE: Randi Kaye, CNN, Charleston, South Carolina.
(END VIDEOTAPE) COOPER: Donald Trump has been on a Twitter attack against Fox News this week, and now he says he's boycotting the network. This morning Fox canceled a scheduled Trump appearance on Bill O'Reilly's show for tomorrow, and then Trump tweeted this, quote, "Fox News has been treating me very unfairly, and I therefore decided I won't be doing any more Fox shows for the foreseeable future." That was after tweets earlier in the week criticizing Fox, O'Reilly, and again, anchor Megyn Kelly. "Quote, do you ever notice that lightweight Megyn Kelly constantly goes after me, but when I hit back, it's totally sexist? She's highly overrated, end quote. And quote, "I think Megyn Kelly should take another 11-day unscheduled vacation," referring to time off Kelly had after the Fox debate. Here is what Trump said to Randi Kaye today about the boycott.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KAYE: As CNN, I'm glad you're still talking to us, no more talking to Fox News, is that the deal?
TRUMP: I like CNN. We'll see what happens. We're going to see what happens. But I'm certainly talking to CNN.
KAYE: Thank you, appreciate it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Joining me now is CNN senior media correspondent, Brian Stelter. This on again, off again relationship with Fox certainly seems to be off again at least for the time being.
BRIAN STELTER, CNN SR. MEDIA CORRESPONDENT: It sure does, Anderson. It is almost as if Donald Trump is like a musician playing one of his greatest hits. It's a classic for him, to go after Fox, to go after Megyn Kelly in particular, with highly personal criticisms. It's almost as if there is a very direct feedback loop between Trump and the media. He watches all the coverage. He watches us. He watches Fox. He reads all the papers. He reads all the websites and he reacts in realtime. That's very different from many other candidates and frankly many other celebrities, many of whom say, oh, I don't read my own press, I don't read what's written, I don't watch what is said about me. Trump is watching and Trump is reacting in realtime, and today Fox simply said, we have had enough. Sources at the network tell me they are simply fed up with all these personal attacks, so they are doing the only thing they can do, which is retaliate with a pretty strong statement and to take him off the air waves, not interview him at all.
COOPER: I guess the question is and I am not sure there is an answer to this question, but does this help Donald Trump with his core supporters? Does it make them feel like they need to rally to his side or does it make him seem thin-skinned and raise questions among those who already have questions about his temperament to actually be president?
STELTER: The conventional wisdom right now in the news industry is that Trump is fading at least a little bit, that he has a lot of momentum coming out of August and September, and that he's still obviously leading in almost every poll, essentially every single poll, but not by the the same degree he was leading before, and maybe he has lost a little bit of steam, and that is why he's lashing out at Fox.
So that's the conventional wisdom. Of course his campaign would say no, this is simply about unfair coverage by Fox News.
There is a divide, though, and what we're seeing with Fox versus Trump, it's emblematic of the divide within the Republican Party. Trump supporters, versus Trump skeptics. I can tell you as someone that looks at the ratings, every single day, there is no evidence Trump fans have turned the channel away from Fox News, even amid these past dustups in August. Now we're seeing a new sort of feud that's brewing. We'll see how long it lasts.
In the past, these thing have been patched over, but it is a very tense and fragile relationship between the most important network among Republicans and right now, the Republican frontrunner.
COOPER: Megyn Kelly, whom I have great respect for, seems to be doing just fine in the ratings, in fact, very well. I think she had her best August in awhile.
STELTER: That's right. She's doing her job covering Trump, skeptically at times. Fox said today pretty bluntly, they don't think Trump understands how the business works. Candidates are not supposed to tell the media what questions to ask. Those are strong words from Roger Ailes, the chairman of Fox News, who many people believe is in the business of supporting Republicans, supporting conservatives, it is a very interesting challenge for him in recent weeks. It's almost as if Trump and Fox have met their match.
COOPER: Brian Stelter, appreciate it. Thank you.
Coming up, it's not just Fox News that is drawing the Trump ire today. He has plenty of room for more targets, including Marco Rubio.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Marco Rubio, who, by the way, has the worst attendance record in the U.S. Senate, has got the No. 1 worst attendance record, and they want him to be president, right?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: We're going to have a lot more on the pope's visit in our next hour, we're on for two hours tonight, all the way to the 10:00 hour tonight. But as we mentioned before the break, Donald Trump is stumping in South Carolina today. In an event in Charleston, he said Hillary Clinton has become quote shrill in his words, and he also of course went after his Republican rivals, including taking some swipes at Marco Rubio. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Rubio, I've never seen a young guy sweat that much. I've never seen, he's drinking water, water, water, I never saw anything like this with him with the water. And everybody, Huckabee, nice guy. He was seriously hot. He was soaking wet. I grabbed him around his back, I said good job, and it was soaking wet. Immediately -- he was drenched.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Joining me now is Sam Clovis, Trump's national campaign co- chairman. Sam, thanks very much for being with us. Donald Trump today announced he's going to be releasing his tax plan next week. Can you tell us anything about what it may include, the broad strokes, if not details?
SAM CLOVIS, NATIONAL CO-CHAIRMAN, TRUMP CAMPAIGN: I think if you had a chance to read his book, "The Time to Get Tough," I think you'll find there is a blueprint in there that will follow probably closely. I think you're going to find that there are a lot of issues in there that will bring capital back to the United States, and when that capital comes back to the United States, it will bring jobs back to the United States. And there is nothing better in this country, and the best social program in the world is a job, and I think that we're going to see a tremendous job creation economy coming from Donald Trump and from the Donald Trump team.
COOPER: I want to ask you about Trump and this Fox News boycott. When I talked to Roger Stone, a former Trump strategist who still considers himself a friend and a supporter, Roger Stone said the last spat with Fox News was a distraction, he called it a cul-de-sac that took away from what Donald Trump should be talking about, which is issues and his opponents. Is that what is happening again? Is this Fox boycott a distraction?
CLOVIS: No, I don't -- I want to give you my perspective on this. I think what is interesting here and I've talked to you before about this, and I heard the person on right before me, Mr. Stelter, was talking about the conventional wisdom. There is nothing conventional going on in this campaign. If you take a look at the top three people in this campaign, they are all outsiders, and none of them have held public office. There is something going on in this country that's really challenging the status quo, and I think that we have people in the media, and we have people in the Republican establishment and certainly in the Democrat establishment that are being challenged. What they are used to and what they have been up to for the past 40 years is being challenged by people who have not come into this and have not gone through all the processes of winning elections and currying favor with donors and all these other things.
Donald Trump is not in the pocket of anyone, and I think this is really causing a tremendous amount of consternation inside the conventional wisdom class we see in the media and the political pundits. I was watching last night, and I was watching a person who was an
editor for a national magazine that I love to read, I thought his head was going to explode. Watching him try to explain his feelings toward Donald Trump. And I think what we're seeing here is a challenge to the status quo that has never been mounted with this ferocity ever in the history of this country, and I'm very proud to be part of it.
COOPER: But is, I guess there is a danger for your candidate in that those who claim he's thin-skinned or doesn't have the temperament to be president, which is something that has been raised time and time again, and obviously he is doing very well in the polls, so there is a lot of people who don't believe that is the case. But among those who believe that narrative, doesn't the idea he's going to boycott an entire network, the Fox network, because he doesn't like them quoting some polls or some of the guests they choose to book on, doesn't that play into the thin skin narrative?
CLOVIS: Well, I think that if you take a look at the totality of what we've seen on Fox News and what we've seen here is we've seen Mr. Trump challenged a lot of the preconceived notions of many of the pundits that are on that network. This happens. This happens over time where you see people that get around the water cooler. They come up with what they think is the proper template for these things, and Mr. Trump is challenging that.
I think this will go on. I think what we really ought to do is take a look at what Mr. Trump has done. Mr. Trump has brought back into politics, back into the narrative here, Democrats, Republicans, independents and he's brought people back into the political process that have felt disenfranchised. The Republican Party elected a majority House in 2010, and what has been shown for that? We elected a majority Senate in 2014.
What have the Republicans shown the grassroots people of this country in that? What are the American people getting from this? This populist message that we're bringing forward here, that Mr. Trump is advancing, and this notion of doing what is right, telling the truth and doing what is best for this country, is resonating with people that have not been part of this process for decades.
COOPER: Yes, Sam, it is always good to have you on, appreciate it. Thank you very much.
CLOVIS: Anderson, thanks so much, appreciate it.
COOPER: Donald Trump will be on CNN tomorrow morning. You can tune into "New Day" at 7:00 a.m. Eastern to hear what he has to day.
There is a lot more ahead tonight on "360." As I said, our coverage continues from here in Washington. We'll look at the day that Pope Francis had here, just an extraordinary day, whether you're a Catholic American or watching anywhere around the world, just -- or anybody who is interested in this pope, it was an extraordinary day to see him in so many different settings. We'll show you his day and we'll also preview tomorrow here on Capitol Hill, when the pope addresses Congress. We'll be right back.