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Women Change Course on Trump; Nadler Breaks with Pelosi over Impeachment; Russian Destroyer Almost Collided with U.S. Cruiser. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired June 7, 2019 - 06:30   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[06:32:37] ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Female voters will play a big role in the 2020 election. CNN visited one Pennsylvania county that swung from Obama to Trump in 2016. So how do the women there feel today?

CNN's Miguel Marquez went to find out.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): In the crucial Philly suburbs, female voters driving the agenda heading into 2020.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Lots and lots of women are acting one step further than what they did before, whether it's vote or volunteer or donate or run. Women are stepping it up.

MARQUEZ: Stepping it up in anger over President Trump, his rhetoric, and policies.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Hey, didn't we surprise them with women during the election? Remember? Women won't like Donald Trump. We got 52 percent, right? Fifty-two.

MARQUEZ: Exit polls from 2016 indicate 52 percent of white women voted for the president. The reality, only 41 percent of all women supported the president in that election. Trump's approval among women in the latest CNN poll, 33 percent.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm going to vote regardless against Donald Trump.

MARQUEZ: And she's a Republican turned Democrat. Of all the women we spoke to, electability of any eventual Democratic challenger was top priority.

MARQUEZ (on camera): You voted for Donald Trump in 2016?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

MARQUEZ: Will you vote for him in 2020? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't think so.

MARQUEZ: Why?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, he disappoint me.

MARQUEZ (voice over): Svetlana Wallace (ph) became an American and Republican 14 years ago. She was solidly conservative. Not anymore.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I thought when I see Hillary and Trump, I thought, man can do better job than woman. Now, I think maybe even Hillary can do better job.

MARQUEZ (on camera): Right.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Now I think it's -- I make a mistake.

MARQUEZ (voice over): North Hampton County is one of three Pennsylvania counties that flipped from Barack Obama in 2012 to Trump in 2016. Democrats flipped it back in the 2018 midterms. The president motivating many women here, too.

MARQUEZ (on camera): The last president you voted for was Ronald Reagan, correct?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. Yes, that's correct.

MARQUEZ: And your -- and you dislike Donald Trump so much you might vote for a Democrat in 2020?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would vote for anyone as long as they were a good person and as long as he left, because he -- he's an embarrassment to the American people.

[06:35:03] MARQUEZ (voice over): At Mainstream Salon in downtown Nazareth, salon owner and conservative Democrat Tammy Cuckers (ph) says she didn't vote for Trump, but he's been good for business and should be given a chance. Her 2020 vote, still undecided.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he should be allowed to try to run the job the way he wanted to, make America great again.

MARQUEZ: Her client, Ann Christina Clingler (ph), Republican since the 1990s, when Donald Trump was sworn in, she became a Democrat.

MARQUEZ (on camera): What is so concerning about him?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The lies. I mean, and you cannot contradict yourself like that. You have it on the news what you just said and then you say the next day you didn't say it. And I don't like how he treats people. I found that's very offensive.

MARQUEZ (voice over): Female voter in the suburbs and beyond, an energized and powerful voting bloc gearing up for an election still 17 months away.

Miguel Marquez, CNN, Nazareth, Pennsylvania.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Seventeen months, but people are certainly engaged already.

All right, a fresh impeachment push from the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. Why he thinks now is the time and why some Democrats disagree.

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[06:40:17] CAMEROTA: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi facing more pressure on impeachment. One of her own leaders is pressuring her to back an impeachment inquiry against President Trump, and he's using new logic to do so.

So let's discuss with CNN's Abby Phillip and Michael Smerconish, CNN political commentator and host of CNN's "Smerconish."

So, Michael, Jerry Nadler has, as we know, been making the case for impeachment inquiry to begin behind closed doors, primarily, to Nancy Pelosi. And he's using two new arguments that I think are really interesting. One is practical. One is technical.

Practically speaking, his argument is that if they were to do a formal impeachment inquiry, they could basically condense all the different committee's investigations into the House Judiciary Committee, that it would streamline it and that would open up all the other committees to do their agendas and it would be like one stop shopping for the Judiciary Committee. And then technically he's saying it would also allow them to talk about it on the House floor, allow Democrats to do so because House rules don't allow you to disparage a colleague, I guess, on the House floor.

So those are interesting new lines of argument. What do you think when you hear those?

MICHAEL SMERCONISH, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think both of those arguments are accurate. My first reaction is to say, OK, but how will that change the eventual calculus in the Senate given Republican control unless something new is developed. But, frankly, my response is to say, what about the Democratic House caucus?

"Axios" has some good tabulation this morning that shows exactly where things stand among those who have publicly come out for impeachment. Seventy-five percent of the Democratic caucus in the House is not there. So perhaps Nadler needs to focus more of his attention within the caucus. And, of course, who are they going to respond to? Speaker Pelosi.

So, a valid argument, but not one that I think will be successful.

BERMAN: He hasn't convinced her yet. And as this is going on, Abby, what it also tells me is that they haven't settled on a path forward, or at least they're not implementing it yet. Next week the hearings they're going to have are with John Dean, former Nixon White House counsel, and former U.S. attorneys. I'm not sure how that furthers their investigation.

ABBY PHILLIP, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Right. It doesn't seem to. It seems to be trying to establish a sort of political fact pattern that can help convince the public of the need for this kind of inquiry. And I think that that's probably what they need to do, frankly, because it's not just the public, it's also Nancy Pelosi, who is eyeing the public response. She's made it very clear, since the beginning, that she believes that if the -- if the American people are not with the Democrats on this, it will be a fool's errand.

And already you've seen the poll numbers moving in the direction in which more people are saying that impeachment is necessary or might be necessary. So there's that working in Nadler's favor.

But I think Pelosi is still correct that it -- you're not seeing a sort of ground swell of support among the public, let alone in the Congress. And, ultimately, I'm not sure that either scenario that he lays out is going to change the way that President Trump characterizes these inquiries to the public. He's going to characterize them as a political witch hunt, saying that Democrats are just vying to hurt him politically. And -- and I -- so I don't know that it really helps them from that perspective.

I think he's going to continue to beat the same drum, regardless of whether it's a centralized inquiry or a more disparate inquiry across multiple committees.

CAMEROTA: Michael, to your point about the Senate will never remove President Trump from office, of course, I think that people have all accepted that. But I think that what Jerry Nadler is saying is that, despite that, they still have a responsibility, as granted to them in the Constitution, of when they see wrongdoing, having to take action to -- to -- and they believe they've seen enough wrongdoing with the Mueller report and other things that they must take action, otherwise, what are they doing in Congress?

SMERCONISH: So I respect that argument. I think that Nancy Pelosi's response is really more practical and political, which is to say, among Democrats, is it our objective to try to get him out of office? And if we go down that road, instead of focusing our energies on the election, frankly we're going to set him up for a victory in the Senate ultimately, and he'll be able to run on the renewed energy that he would get from that process. I think she believes that the easier way to win in 2020 is to not go through this process where he's successful at the end of it.

BERMAN: Yesterday, President Trump gave a speech in Normandy for D-Day and we all remarked it was a different type of speech because he didn't talk about himself. He talked about the veterans who were behind him. We noted he left politics aside for the 27 minutes of that speech.

[06:45:05] But we did note that he did an interview with Fox TV in the minutes just before he took the stage. And we wondered openly whether or not he would have talked politics and hurled the typical insults that he's known for beforehand. And we got answer, which is yes. That standing feet away from the gravestones of the men who lost their lives on the beaches at Omaha Beach, he levied political attacks. Look at the picture and listen to what he says.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I think she's a disgrace. I -- I actually don't think she's a talented person. I've tried to be nice to her because I would have liked to have gotten some deals done. She's incapable of doing deals. She's a nasty, vindictive, horrible person. The Mueller report came out, it was a disaster for them.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: It really does bend your mine when you look at where he's sitting and listen to what he's saying, Abby.

PHILLIP: Yes, absolutely. And I think the president really -- you know, this could have been one of those seamless days in which everything from beginning to end was on message and which he gave a speech that was actually a -- quite a good speech. It was about all the right things. But he couldn't help but sit down with Fox and give this interview, in which I thought his language towards Nancy Pelosi, it's some of the strongest I've ever heard him use. He called her a nasty, horrible person. It's really getting to him and he's not passing up any opportunity to really attack her, even where he was yesterday. And I think that it's a sign of how this inquiry and all of the things going on back home never really leaves his mind.

He woke up almost every day on this trip here basically going after all kinds of different grievances, whether it was Joe Biden or Chuck Schumer or Nancy Pelosi or Robert Mueller and it shows that the president has a lack of discipline at some of these -- at some of these key moments where he could be helping himself. He has no -- he has no choice but to -- but to revert back to his normal behavior, which is to go into a cycle of grievance. And I think it really hurts them at times like this when they could be getting a good boost out of these -- out of these types of moments.

CAMEROTA: But Abby, not only was that the -- were the optics so upsetting of hearing him level, you know, call Nancy Pelosi vile names in front of all of those gravestones, but is it your reporting, is it true that the reason that he was late, the reason that he kept other world leaders and all of those veterans waiting was because he was doing that interview?

PHILLIP: It seems that based on the timing, he was sitting down for that interview at around the time that the formal ceremony was supposed to start. Now, what's not clear is whether there was -- you know, it's not unusual for these things to be running a few minutes late or, you know, generally, because you're dealing with a lot of logistics, but that interview was scheduled -- I mean it's really baffling, actually, when you think about it, scheduled for just before the start of the formal ceremony. And so it's a baffling choice. And I think that it does look like that's one of the reasons why everything was as delayed as it was.

BERMAN: Michael, I don't want to let you go without getting your take on this. You're a really good barometer of taste among other things. So what did you make of those comments?

SMERCONISH: I found them appalling, indefensible. And, you know, I watched your coverage yesterday. I thought the entire ceremony was so moving, I thought that his speech was so appropriate and I commented to a colleague of mine that I thought it interesting and noteworthy that he and Alexander Macron (ph) were getting along, treating each other like adults. And then to see this -- you know, I'm reflecting on the 1992 presidential campaign, that's how far back my recollection goes, of when Bush 41 sought to make an issue of Bill Clinton allegedly having protested at Oxford against the Vietnam War. There's always been this mantra that our differences end at the water's edge.

One last thought. Fox News didn't do him any favor. I don't know why Laura Ingraham would even -- I'm not defending the president in this regard, but why would she even raise that subject matter. If I were the broadcaster in that role, looking at that setting, I would have never raised that domestic subject.

CAMEROTA: Abby, Michael, thank you both very much.

Be sure to watch "Smerconish" tomorrow on 9:00 a.m. Eastern on CNN.

All right, it's hard to believe, but more American service members are killed during training than in combat. The latest, a deadly accident at West Point. We'll tell you what happened, next.

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[06:53:27] CAMEROTA: A West Point cadet was killed and 21 others injured in an accident near a training site. This tragic incident has refocused attention on a startling statistic. More American service members are dying during training exercises than in combat.

CNN's Polo Sandoval is live in Highland Falls, New York, with more.

Polo.

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Alisyn, this morning, the entire West Point community and the town that surrounds it here on the banks of the Hudson River are expected to learn the identity of that young cadet who died when that military transport vehicle overturned just about 24 hours ago today, injuring 21 others.

According to investigators, that vehicle had just left the barracks and was headed to a nearby training camp when the incident happened here. Now it's going to be up to a team of investigators and investigative task forces that's traveling here from Georgia that will essentially have to look at various factors here as they try to find an exact cause here.

Obviously the vehicle here, a very heavy, durable vehicle that I'm told is not easy to overturn. The terrain itself, which the West Point superintendent described as very hilly. All of this going to be taken into consideration as there are many questions.

What this incident is also doing, as you mentioned a little while ago, Alisyn, is essentially renewing focus on this very startling statistic that more American service members are dying as a result of training accidents. For the town here, it is certainly a reality here, John, as they, again, continue to ask exactly what's behind it. But as we heard yesterday from Lieutenant Colonel Darryl Williams, the superintendent of West Point, the community is still Army strong. They are pulling together not only for the family of this young cadet, but really the rest of them too, John.

[06:55:06] BERMAN: All right, Polo Sandoval for us in -- near West Point, I should say. Thank you very much for that report.

Joe Biden has reversed a position he held for decades on federal funding for abortions. We'll have much more on why and how this all unfolded, next.

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ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

BERMAN: All right, good morning and welcome to your NEW DAY.

We do have breaking news.

The U.S. Navy just told CNN that a Russian destroyer almost collided with one of its cruisers in the Philippine Sea.

CAMEROTA: The ships same so close together that the Navy says they were forced to throw its cruiser into reverse to avoid hitting the other ship and getting into a crash.

CNN's Barbara Starr is live at the Pentagon with what we know at this hour.

Barbara, what are they saying?

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Good morning to both of you.

Not only throw the ship into reverse, but throw it into reverse and hit the gas to avoid a collision with a Russian warship in the Philippine Sea east of China earlier today.

[06:59:53] There is a statement now from the U.S. Navy and essentially what they are saying is a U.S. Navy warship was operating in international waters, the USS Chancellorsville, and they were conducting helicopter operations. They were on a steady course, according to the Navy.

END