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EARLY START

U.S. Withdrawing From Paris Climate Accord; Trump: We'll Renegotiate Paris Agreement; China Stepping Up On Climate Change; Senators Want Sessions Investigated. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired June 2, 2017 - 05:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[05:31:25] (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The United States will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN HOST:The future of America's role shaping global issues suddenly in doubt. President Trump pulls out of a landmark climate accord, so is the U.S. abdicating leadership to some allies and some adversaries? EARLY START's coverage continues right now. Welcome back to EARLY START, I'm Christine Romans.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN HOST: I'm Victor Blackwell. Twenty-nine minutes until the top of the hour. This morning, the United States is no longer a global leader combatting climate change. President Trump announcing he is withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris Climate Accord, a process that will take until November 2020 to complete. Check your calendar -- there's something else happening in November 2020. The sweeping move fulfills the campaign promise but it's prompting sharp backlash from nations around the globe.

ROMANS: Speaking from the Rose Garden, the president said he wants to renegotiate key parts of this agreement but there are stark warnings this morning that the U.S. is ceding a leadership role that it's held, shaping world events since World War II.

BLACKWELL: The decision to withdraw being met with stinging rebuke in Europe this morning. German Chancellor Angela Merkel calling President Trump's move "regrettable." The president of the European Commission says "There is no reverse gear on the Paris deal." CNN's Melissa Bell is in Paris for more on the response from key European allies. And that reference to a "reverse gear" comes after the president said not only is the U.S. withdrawing, but they'll attempt to renegotiate another global deal. That from Macron, saying that's not going to happen.

MELISSA BELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's not going to happen and that reply was really united, coming really very quickly after Donald Trump had made that announcement from the Rose Garden. There simply is no possibility for any renegotiation of this deal. That's been part of the response.

The other part, Victor, and this is perhaps the most interesting, has been the extent to which this has seemed to galvanize the rest of the world and to increase their determination, really, to move ahead and to move ahead faster.I was speaking over the course of the last few hours to the woman who led France's negotiations 18 months ago and she said she's very optimistic because what this has shown is how strongly the world feels about this deal.

You know, you really have to cross your mind back 18 months ago when the whole world, 195 countries, gathered here to come up with this improbable deal. At the time, really, Victor, the question had been is the world ready for Paris? Eighteen months on and this is something that the united response is reminding us of this morning. The question is really how can't the world live without Paris? And I think it is thanks to what Donald Trump had to announce yesterday in the Rose Garden that this has really been -- come as a reminder to many of the world.

We're going to hear later -- to many people around the world. We're going to hear later today from Brussels where the united European Union and China will put out this united statement -- this joint statement about the fact that they intend to work together and to work together more closely and quicker to achieve their targets -- Victor.

BLACKWELL: All right. Melissa Bell for us there in Paris. Thank you.

ROMANS: All right. In Beijing, the Chinese government this morning reaffirming its commitment to fight climate change, promising to be a "responsible party" after the U.S. bailed. One European leader warning that if America steps off the world stage the Chinese are in prime position to fill that vacuum.

I want to bring in CNN's Matt Rivers for more on China's plans. He's live in Beijing. And, you know, just on any kind of given day, any video of a Chinese city and the pollution there shows you why, already, the Chinese are such leaders in clean technology. Their people are demanding it.

[05:35:00] MATT RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, they don't really have a choice and it's a very easy sell domestically for the government here and those of us who live in Beijing have to deal with horrific air quality on a regular basis.

This is very much a social concern here and the government recognizes that and they see an opportunity two-fold. On the one hand, they can satisfy a domestic need and, on the other hand, they can take what could be their first really, truly global leadership role on an issue that affects all of these countries. Why can they take that leadership role? They are the biggest greenhouse gas emitter in the world and they are the largest economy remaining in this agreement.

And so, other countries are going to look at what the Chinese do when it comes to sticking with this agreement and when it comes with pushing the envelope. What is the Chinese -- what are the Chinese willing to do to fight climate change, and what we've seen so far is some pretty interesting evidence. The Chinese have curbed their coal consumption three years running now and they are set to invest $360 billion U.S. dollars by the year 2020 in clean energy development projects. There are some concerns that they're still relying too much on coal, but the fact is the Chinese appear to be putting their money where their mouth is.

Now, in terms of responding to the U.S. leaving, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs didn't directly respond to that, saying only that China believes that all countries should remain in agreement -- in the agreement, and they will continue to do so. But a state-run tabloid newspaper called "The Global Times" said that the U.S. withdrawing from this agreement is reckless and an example of how the U.S. can be selfish when it comes to international agreements.

ROMANS: All right. Matt Rivers for us in Beijing this morning. Thank you.

BLACKWELL: Critics say that America's influence on world events will now be diminished and America could find itself taking a backseat on other critical global issues. But let's go now live to London and bring in CNN's Frederik Pleitgen. Frederik, good morning to you, and I'd like to examine not just the U.S.' role in many of these other global issues, but on an individual basis. President Trump -- and you're there in London with, let's say, Theresa May, who's facing election soon -- what this will mean not just for the larger agreements but for the individual leaders who have stood close to President Trump?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, absolutely. You know, I think it's going to have a big impact on them and the way that they move forward and you're absolutely right. Theresa May, for instance, here in the United Kingdom, is currently in a re-election campaign and right now any support that she receives from President Trump, especially after that decision that he made yesterday, really probably isn't going to help her very much to get reelected.

And the same thing is also true, by the way, in places like Germany as well, where the figure of President Trump and the fact that he is so anti -- or was so anti this climate deal has now made this decision is a big thing in an election campaign there as well. And all political parties are taking shots at the U.S. president and saying look, this is something that can't continue.

On the other hand, though, I have to say one of the things that arguably all of this has been very good for has actually been cohesion in the European Union. The Europeans are talking more than I've heard them, at least in the past years -- talking about needing to strengthen the European Union, needing to work together, so a lot of that is still happening.

And then on a larger scale, of course, Victor, it's going on as well with, for instance, China. And right now as we speak there's actually an E.U.-China investment summit going on where the head of the European Union came out and said that he believed that China and the E.U. are aligned in a need for international solution. So it really looks as though there is already that pivot going on in many nations, but on a larger scale as well. BLACKWELL: As the president sets up this dichotomy between jobs here in the U.S. and the environment and repeating that "America First" mantra, we have to remember this does not happen in a vacuum.

PLEITGEN: Yes.

BLACKWELL: Frederik Pleitgen there for us in London.

ROMANS: All right, 38 minutes past the hour. President Trump making this claim about the Paris Climate Accord.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: It could cost America as much as 2.7 million lost jobs.

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ROMANS: Is that claim true and what kind of jobs is he talking about? We're going to break down those numbers.

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[05:43:00] ROMANS: All right, why did the president quit the Paris Accord? This grim future.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: The Paris Accord and the onerous energy restrictions that is placed on the United States could cost America as much as 2.7 million lost jobs by 2025.

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ROMANS: That nugget from a favorite study of the deal's critics commissioned by a conservative public interest group. Other experts say it grossly overestimates the cost of cutting emissions. It only counts losses in heavy industry like steel and coal, not gains in alternative energy. Job growth and clean energy outpacing any old school energy sector. Look at this. Last year, solar jobs grew 17 times faster than the average. Solar employs more than twice the number of Americans that coal does -- so does natural gas.

Experts say the president's policies could impede that job trend. It's why business leaders are callingout the president's decision. They say he is stuck in the past. The future of jobs and clean -- and investment, rather, in clean technology.

Joining us this morning, political economist Greg Valliere. He's chief strategist at Horizon Investments. Good morning, Greg.

GREG VALLIERE, POLITICAL ECONOMIST, CHIEF STRATEGIST, HORIZON INVESTMENTS: Hi, Christine.

ROMANS: So many of these business leaders are saying the president is just flat wrong but you know what, he's not talking to them. He's talking to his base here, isn't he? This is about telling his base I'm going to do what I told you I was going to do, and then there's this secondary benefit of sort of pissing off global leaders.

VALLIERE: Well, you're absolutely right and let me give you my quick theory here as to why the timing came yesterday. One week from today we'll all be talking about obstruction of justice because we get Comey testifying next Thursday. And I think a major reason why the Senate is not going to indict and the House is not going to convict -- a major reason why impeachment is so unlikely is that Trump's base has held in there. It's two-thirds of the Republican Party. They're not going to oust him. As long as Trump's base is loyal, he's safe, and that's why I think he made the speech yesterday.

BLACKWELL: So we heard from some people who are, I guess, overlapping into the president's base, namely Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia -- a conservative Democrat from West Virginia, coal-producing state.

[05:45:05] VALLIERE: Yes.

BLACKWELL: He's up for re-election in 2018. What position does it put those Democrats and Republicans who disagreed with the decision to withdraw?

VALLIERE: I think it depends on where they live, Victor. If you're Susan Collins, in Maine, you can criticize Trump on this. If you're Manchin or if you're from Pennsylvania, you're going to say you know, this is a flawed treaty. And there is a case to be made, as we discussed in the last half hour, that this treaty is full of loopholes, it's unenforceable, it doesn't really do a lot to reduce climate change, so I think there's an argument to be made by the Manchins of the world who have to worry about getting reelected.

ROMANS: It's interesting. There was a conservative think tank -- you know, they were told ahead of time that this was going to happen and one of the insiders at one of those think tanks said you know, when you're struggling you have to go back to your base. This is not about what the world things about it. This is not what about the green elites, as "The Wall Street Journal" puts it, thinks about it.

VALLIERE: Yes.

ROMANS: This is about what those workers in heavy industry think.

VALLIERE: Yes, and you mentioned earlier about all the studies. One of my favorite sayings is "There's lies, there's damn lies, and there are statistics."

ROMANS: Mark Twain.

VALLIERE: Yes. You can prove any case you want with any set of statistics. The fact is that this country, I think, is seeking to disengage from the rest of the world. All the handwringing this morning that we're going to lose our stature -- I think this administration and Steve Bannon do not want the U.S. to be the policemen, to be the nation builder. I think we're consciously withdrawing. BLACKWELL: Despite the ridicule and the deriding from Elon Musk, and Jeff Immelt, and Bob Iger, and their withdrawal from the council, is this a driver insofar that looking ahead to 2018, this alone -- climate change and the withdrawal from this will be enough to motivate voters at the polls?

VALLIERE: You've got to think young people, people who are environmentalists will vote in larger numbers, both in 2018 and 2020. It's an issue down the road but I think in the short-run -- again, I think it solidifies Trump's base, which he needs to do to get through the Comey testimony.

ROMANS: You know what's so interesting to me is the president said he's speaking for Pittsburgh, not Paris.

VALLIERE: Right.

ROMANS: And that really struck me because Pittsburgh is seen as this great diversified town that recovered from a disaster -- you know, a cratering of the steel industry and is now, you know, a hub of autonomous tech -- car driving -- you know, car technology and tech and startups and diverse manufacturing. Isn't that interesting? I mean --

VALLIERE: Yes.

ROMANS: -- Pittsburgh is actually the example of the post-carbon economy but the president doesn't seem to know that.

VALLIERE: You know, I'm in Pittsburgh a lot. It's a fabulous, dynamic city. The Pittsburgh that he talked about yesterday is the Pittsburgh of 50 years ago. It doesn't exist anymore.

BLACKWELL: And the tweet we just saw was from Pittsburgh's mayor, Bill Peduto -- and let's put it back up. "Fact, Hillary Clinton received 80 percent of the vote in Pittsburgh."

VALLIERE: Yes.

BLACKWELL: "Pittsburgh stands with the world and will follow the Paris Agreement." We've heard that from mayors across the country, as I listed off a few of the CEOs. To what degree can these goals, these efforts still be accomplished considering the withdrawal from the Paris Accord by the U.S.?

VALLIERE: Well, I think most of the countries who've signed will comply. I think a lot of cities around America, a lot of states, a lot of companies will comply, so there still we be some progress. But I think for this administration right now, 270 is the statistic that matters the most. That's what you need to win the Electoral College, and to put that map together he has to make speeches like this.

BLACKWELL: All right. Greg Valliere, thank you so much.

VALLIERE: OK.

ROMANS: Have a great weekend, Greg.

VALLIERE: You, too, yes.

BLACKWELL: The Trump administration now petitioning the Supreme Court to reinstate the president's travel ban. The Justice Department asking the high court to lift lower court rulings that halted the president's executive order. The travel ban would temporarily bar travelers from six Muslim-majority countries. Now, the administration argues it's a matter of national security. Critics call it a discriminatory ban on Muslims. Much more on this when "NEW DAY" begins in just a few minutes.

ROMANS: All right. Thepresident proclaims he has created more than one million private sector jobs -- a million. We're going to explain whether that number is true on CNN Money Stream, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:53:35] ROMANS: James Comey will testify next Thursday before the Senate Intelligence Committee. The former FBI director expected to detail private conversations he had with President Trump. He's almost certain to be asked whether the president urged him to drop his investigation into fired national security adviser Michael Flynn.

BLACKWELL: Meantime, letters newly-obtained by CNN show two Democratic senators have asked the FBI three times to investigate Attorney General Jeff Sessions for possible perjury. Senators Al Franken and Patrick Leahy say that they're concerned Sessions lied in confirmation hearings about his meetings with the Russian ambassador. A source says that so far, they've had no response from the FBI.

ROMANS: OK, now this. A word you may have never even heard of, let alone spelled, but one 12-year-old showing what she's got.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She knows what it means.

ANANYA VINAY, WINNER, SCRIPPS SPELLING BEE: M-A-R-O-C-A-I-N, marocain.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That is correct.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Congratulations.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Ananya Vinay of Fresno, California named the winner of the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee. The sixth grader's victory ending the contest's three-year streak of ending in a tie.

BLACKWELL: Ananya and her rival there, Rohan Rajeev, battled it out for 41 minutes at the final until Ananya won. Now, she goes home with $40,000 cash and a trophy. And in case you're wondering, marocain is a kind of dress fabric. ROMANS: Duly noted. Let's get a check on CNN Money Stream this Friday morning. Global stock markets have futures stretching higher after record highs. The Dow popping 136 points for its first record close since March first. Overall, a banner day on Wall Street. Stocks shrugging off the business community's protest of that Paris deal decision because corporate American has already made plans for climate change, these CEOs tell us, and they're not changing course now.

[05:55:13] And investors also saw a strong reading of private sector jobs ahead of today's official monthly jobs report. That report should show an 80th consecutive month of jobs growth. The May jobs report due in two and one-half hours. One hundred seventy-nine thousand jobs added is the forecast and the jobless rate at the 10- year low of 4.4 percent.

Now, the president promises 25 million jobs over the next 10 years. He says he's well on his way.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: More than a million private sector jobs.

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ROMANS: OK, we're keeping track. A million private sector jobs he said he's created. The Labor Department counts 522,000 jobs since he took office. Where'd he come up with twice that? Likely, the ADP jobs report. It's a private sector -- you know, private sector tally and it shows 1.2 million jobs since January. Two problems with that figure. ADP is just an estimate and it uses a much smaller sample than the Labor Department. Also, he's counting all of the jobs. And January, of course -- January 20th was when he came into office.

All right. U.S. auto sales fell for the fifth straight month. The big U.S. auto companies sold just over 1.5 million cars in May, down from last year. Car sales are slowing after seven years of increases and automakers are trimming production and jobs now to save money. For example, G.M. has cut about 5,000 jobs since November. And, of course, the president often talks about American automakers adding production and how important this is for the manufacturing base in this country. After seven years, maybe you're starting to see those sales peak. We'll closely watch that.

BLACKWELL: All right.

ROMANS: All right. By the way, that spelling bee winner, Ananya Vinay, will be on "NEW DAY" just before 8:00 a.m. Thanks for joining us, I'm Christine Romans.

BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. Good to be here.

ROMANS: Nice to see you.

BLACKWELL: "NEW DAY" starts right now.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: The United States will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.

MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Our president is choosing to put American jobs and American consumers first.

TRUMP: I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He couldn't have picked a worse city as an example.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The message to the rest of the world is that the United States is abdicating leadership.

EMMANUEL MACRON, PRESIDENT OF FRANCE: France will not give up the fight.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Fired FBI director James Comey to testify.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It probably will be the most explosive and most watched hearing since Watergate.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Putin likens hackers to artists.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Perhaps he sees the trail of evidence is getting closer to the Kremlin.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN HOST: We want to welcome our viewers in the United States and around the world. This is NEW DAY. It's Friday, June 2nd, 6:00 here in New York. And we begin with several major developments on the starting line. The Trump administration appealing to the Supreme Court to reinstate its halted travel ban on people from six majority-Muslim countries. And leaders around the world expressing their disappointment over President Trump's decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Accord, while cities and states in the U.S. vow to abide by the agreement, showing their support for the accord by lighting up buildings in green.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: White House officials are refusing to say whether President Trump believes climate change is a hoax. They literally won't answer the question. Does the president believe human activity contributes to global warming? It matters -- they should answer. And, what can only be described as must-see T.V. Former FBI director James Comey will testify before a Senate panel next Thursday. The big question is what will he reveal about private conversations with President Trump? We have it all covered. Let's get to CNN's Joe Johns live at the White House. Good morning, Joe.

JOE JOHNS, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Chris. On the Paris Accord, the president willing to accept the condemnation of the world in order to keep a promise he made to his loyal supporters during the campaign, a promise that was easy to keep because it didn't have to be vetted by any other branch of the U.S. government. But the fallout in terms of U.S. standing in the world could be enormous.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TRUMP: The United States will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.

JOHNS: President Trump making good on his campaign promise to withdraw from the landmark 195-nation agreement, but leaving the door open for a potential new deal.

TRUMP: We're getting out but we will start to negotiate and we will see if we can make a deal that's fair. And if we can, that's great.

JOHNS: Trump's Rose Garden speech focusing not on climate change but Trump claiming, instead, the accord is hurting American jobs.

TRUMP: The Paris agreement handicaps the United States economy in order to win praise from the very foreign capitals and global activists that have long sought to gain wealth at our --