tv Early Start with Christine Romans and Dave Briggs CNN October 20, 2017 2:00am-2:59am PDT
like this it is about the most difficult thing you can imagine. there's no perfect way to make that phone call. >> well a rare and highly personal moment in the white house. chief of staff john kelly defending president trump's handling of a condolence call made to an army widow. >> and two former presidents from opposite sides of the political spec trump both warning in -- compelled president trump to power. it was an extraordinary day in politics. good morning, welcome to "early start." i'm dave briggs. >> i'm rene marsh, it's friday, october 20, 5:00 a.m. in the east. white house chief of staff making an emotional appearance. kelly defending the way president trump handled a condolence call to the widow of sergeant la david johnson, who was killed in an ambush in the niger. kelly also condemned frederica
wilson who has sharply criticized the president for using intensive language on the call. kelly didn't hold back. >> i was stunned when i came to work yesterday morning and brokenhearted at what i saw a member of congress doing. a member of congress who listened in on a phone call from the president of the united states to a young wife. and in his way, tried to express that opinion that he's a brave man, a fallen hero. he knew what he was getting himself into. >> the storyould have ended there, butate last night came another tweet from the president. quote, fake news is going crazy with whacky congresswoman wilson, a democrat who is secretly on a very personal call and gave a total lie on content, worth noting, sergeant johnson's widow invited wilson to listen
to the call on speaker phone. general kelly did not dispute the facts of that phone call. for more let's bring in cnn's sarah murray at the white house. >>reporter: good morning. white house chief of staff and retired four -- he talked about something he rarely speaks about which was losing his son in h afghanistan and provided a window into the advice he gave to the president about how to talk to family members of a soldier who's paid the ultimate sacrifice. >> he said to me, what do i say? i said to him, sir, there's nothing you can do to lighten the burden on these families. but let me tell you what i tell them. let me tell you what my best friend, joe dunphy told me. he said, kel, he was doing exactly what he wanted to do
when he was killed. he knew what he was getting into by joining the-that 1%. >> kelly offered up the explanation at a time when president trump was under scrutiny. that's o this is not the narrative the white house wants but how difficult it is to get away from all sides, whether it's kelly, its congresswoman, president trump, politicizing the death of a u.s. soldier. back to you. >> thanks. let's bring in cnn political analyst, julian zelizer. we are still talking about politicizing condolence calls but general kelly, chief of staff there. does he hold a democratic congresswoman, does he hold the media to a higher standard than
the president of the united states when it comes to this issue? >> it appears now he is. let's add it's not just the democratic congresswoman, it's a friend of the family who has known them tore a long time. >> mentor to this young man. >> yeah. not only is he holding them he to a different standard, he is now appearing front and center to be part of this political process, which for many people is unpleasant to watch. >> it almost is like we're witnessing the evolution of john kelly and his role within the white house. this is the second time he's appeared in the briefing room. yes, it was an emotion into talk he gave, but let's not forget, tws also very political. do we start we're going to start seeing the white house more to do that heavy duty cleanup? >> looks like he was brought in originally to contain and control the president, but that might have flipped around. he is now being used as part of the political attack team of the
administration. and now we've seen him do this twice and it it wouldn't be surprising to see more of it. he has this reputation which makes him a very effective spokesperson but he has to realize the cost of doing that. >> he clearly has the respect of media in that room. this is a four star general on the new york tabloids. this is something we don't see. something else is a democrat and republican former president speaking out about a current president. the obama and bush i think speaking with one voice yesterday. let's listen to both. >> we've seen our discourse degraded by casual cruelty. at times, it could seem like the forces pulling us apart are stronger than the forces binding us together. we've seen nationalism dissorted into nayivism. >> instead of looking for ways to work together and get things
done in a practical way, we've got folks who are deliberately trying to make folks angry. to demonize people who have different ideas. to get the base all riled up. >> there was no mention of president trump, but are barack obama and george w. bush speaking with one voice about one person? >> yes. two former presidents who don't agree on much, in fact they don't agree on many anything. they seem to agree we have a problem and a risk the nation faces. obama telling democrats these midterm elections are important because we need a check in kong to what the president is doing. and former president bush who has barely said anything since leaving the white house is clearly saying to his party, not just to the country that this is
not tollerable. it was a remarkable day to see them front and center speaking about one person, even if they didn't mention him. >> it was really remarkable but i think people will really stunned when they heard george w. bush because it's his fellow republican speaking out about him. at the risk of jumping the gun a little bit here, you have trump's approval latings pretty low. bush speaking out, it shows a fractured republican party. how does that translate when we talk about the midterm elections? are the republicans in big trouble. >> it is too early to say, but many people now announcing retirements. you have members of the party from senator corker to former president bush openly raising these concerns. the so this is the kind of thing that can dampen enthusiasms for republicans going into the mid termt.
>> we're in desperate need of levity and we found it in the oddest of sources. paul ryan, listen to what he said at the dinner last night, a bit of a roast. >> i know last year that donald trump offended some people. i no he his comments according to critics went too far. some said it was unbecoming of a public figure. and they said that his comments were offensive. well, thank god he's learned his lesson. every morning i wake up in my office and i scroll twitter to see which tweet that is i'll have to pretend i did not see later on. you know, at one point, the president actually insulted me. i know that sounds kind of surprising. he described me as a boy scott who was boring to talk to. it didn't hurt my feelings. what hurt my feelings was when my wife agreed with him.
>> initial part cracking jokes at at president. he doesn't usually have much of a sense of humor. do you think he'll have a tweet response later today. >> if the president will be oeftded. he could. i think he is joking obviously, this is a dinner with are you joke, but sometimes jokes can be biting. this h is like the speeches by the former presidents, even it's funny, it's a little window into some of what's going on in the minds of republicans on the hill. we'll see if president trump can contain himself. maybe speaker ryan will be the recipient of this morning's tweet. >> those can really be humanizing. paul ryan did a terrific job. great to have you. thanks. ahead, the kurdish led forces claiming they are the new authority in sear yyria. first, let's talk money. open enrollment in less than two
weeks, but six in ten americans say the white house is not doing enough to help obamacare run the way it should. that according to a new cnn poll conducted by ssrs. nooch 60% say it should be shoring up obamacare, not trying to replace it. the trump upset the market by stopping subsidy payments. president trump has publicly waffled on backing the plan. even with the gop controlled congress, only half of republicans are optimistic. overall, majority of americans dits approve of how the president is handling health care but still blame former president obama for obamacare's perform mabs. only 37% put responsibility on the trump administration which is now managing the law. well it's been one month
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i'd say it was a 10. >> president trump meeting with the governor of puerto rico there giving his administrations response a 10 out of 10. this just weeks after saying that maria wasn't devote a real catastrophe like katrina. moan time recovery efforts are proceeding slowly. bill weir with the latest. >> reporter: about 3 million americans have spent another
night in the dark and heat without power. that is the question on so many minds here, when is it coming back on. i went looking in search of answers and i started in a place that you might actually recognize. ♪ >> it is this most popular music video ever. desposito has been viewed on youtube over 4 billion times. but most of that massive audience probably didn't realize the video was shot in one of the most notorious neighborhoods. for years this was written off as being drug and gang invested. there hadn't been a murder here in six years, and then came dispo seat toe and suddenly this rough side of town was a tourist destination. people felt good about themselves, but then came maria. the excited scramble for a
single bag of ice is proof that potable water and power are still luxuries over a month after maria which puts enormous pressure on the men paid to electrify puerto rico. they are with a small two-year-old company out of montana. it raised a lot of eyebrows when they were given a $300 million contract without any input from the army corps of engineers. you know the head line was how did you get this contract? you're a brand new company, right? >> we've been around for a few years, and we specialize in h difficult and mountainous terrain projects. all i can say is we took the call and are here. >> white fish energy is not the only power company working on this problem. there was nor multi million contract handed out to a much more established company yesterday, but senator marco rubio says the army corps of engineers is still trying to
come up with the plan to fix the power grid in puerto rico. more than a month out. back to you. >> great job. still a long way to go. >> absolutely. well, speaking of long ways to wait, for the first time in nearly three decades the los angeles dodgers are world series bound. it was an unlikely hero who sealed the deal. coy wire will have a lot more on it in the bleacher report coming up next. that's why i switched to the spark cash card from capital one. now, i'm earning unlimited 2% cash back on every purchase i make. everything. what's in your wallet?
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time the dodgers were in the world series? >> you do. >> i do. it's been 29 years. the dodgers headed back to the world series. >> coy wire has a lot more in this morning's bleacher report. good morning. >> good morning to you, david. back in 1988, we're getting ready for the george h.b. bush and also who framed roger rabbit was at the top of the fox office. young dave briggs just 12 years old. hernandez wasn't born yet but he was a one man wrecking crew last night, three home runs against the cubs, including a grand slam. seven rbis. that's a league championship series record. dodgers dominate, 11-1. get this. his mom still in puerto rico and before the game he talked to her and told her he was going to hit a home run. he lied. he hit three of them. his mom watched the game at his
grand parent's house powered by a generator. he said he's going back to the island as soon as he finishes business in la. >> my body's here but mind's back home. hard being away from home and to be able to do this, against the cubs that beat us last year and get us to the world series, it's amazing. all i want to do right now is go to my dad and get a big hug. >> get them popping. champagne showers, going to have to wait for the winner of the yankees/astros seeries. no, with wrap that up tonight. >> just about a half hour later, thursday night football. better division rooil, chief, raiders in oakland. raiders overcame a 9-point deficit in the fourth quarter.
a two-touchdown pass. they snap a four game losing streak. big one. 31-30. >> raiders running back marshawn lynch reportedly had to watch the game come back from the stands. got ejectsed from the game for going beast mode on an official. he grabbed the jersey. don't do in that. >> he can expect the fedex package in the locker room in a couple days here not tune of a fine of about $30,000 is what the league to get him for in this case. the quintessential case, many families in houston still reeling. deshaun watson with hope. helping to furnish 176 homes, back in 2006, when he was just
11, he and his siblings received the keys to their very own home thanks to an nfl legend. he's been helping habitat for humanity put rooves over other family's heads ever since. leading the league in passing touchdowns. >> 15. he has been outstanding for the texans. thank you. white house chief of staff making an emotional appearance as the defense department looks for some answers behind that ambush in niger. >> the u.s. military does not he leave its troops behind, and i would just ask that you not question the actions of the troops who were caught in the fire fight. ♪
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could imagine. there's know perfect way to make that phone call. >> a rare and highly personal moment in the white house. chief of staff john kelly defending president trump's handling of a condolence call made to an army widow. >> and two former presidents both warning in strong terms against the forces of division that propelled president trump to power. welcome back to "early start." i'm rene marsh. >> i'm dave briggs, it's 2:31 out in los angeles where i think they're still celebrating the los angeles dodgers headed to the world series. that is not where we start. we're still locked in this controversy. john kelly making an emotional appearance. defending the way president trump handled a condoll lance call to the widow of sergeant la david johnson. kelly also condemned florida congresswoman fredder reek wa
wilson po who has sharply criticized the president. >> i was stunned when i came to work yesterday morning, and brokenhearted at what i saw a member of congress doing. a member of congress who listened in on a phone call from the president of the united states to a young wife. and in his way, tried to express that opinion that he's a brave man, a fallen hero. he knew what he was getting himself into. >> well the story didn't end there. late last night president trump weighed in with a tweet. the fake news is going crazy with whacky congresswoman wilson, a democrat who was secretly on a very personal call, and gave a total lie on content. well, it is worth noting, sergeant johnson's widow invited wilson to listen to the call. we have a lot more on this. we want to bring in cnn's sarah
murray at the white house. >> >> reporter: good morning. john kelly making an extraordinary appearance. he talked about something he rarely 1350eks publicly about, which is losing his own son in afghanistan and provided a window into the advice he gave to the president about how to talk to family members of a soldier who paid the ultima the sacrifice. >> he said to me, what do i say? i said to him, sir, there's nothing you can do to lighten the burden on these families. but let me tell you what i tell them, and let me tell you what my best friend, joe dunphy told me, because he was my casualty officer. he said, kel, he was doing exactly what he wanted to do when he was killed. he knew what he was getting into by joining the -- that 1%. >> now kelly offered up this
explanation at a time when president trump is under scrutiny for the tone and for the words he chose when he speak to the widow of sergeant la david johnson, one of the soldiers killed in the military operation that went awry in niger. this is not the narrative the white house wants but how difficult it is to get away from all sides, whether it's kelly, congresswoman, trump politicizing the debt of a u.s. soldier. >> now, we want to bring in cnn's political analyst julian zeliz zelizer. good morning, thanks so much for joining us. >> good morning. >> first question for you. i mean second time kelly appears in the white house briefing. the is he becoming trump's explainer in chief essentially? >> i think he's taking on a new role. one of the figures who's a public spokesperson for the administration. it's no longer just john kelly
behind the scenes trying to quote unquote droel the presidecontrol the president. >> look, general john kelly had to take a call no american ever should have to, the most heart breaking phone call ever, and we should give deference to the general for losing a son in afghanistan, but he got a lot wrong yesterday. one, he mischaracterized the relationship of this congresswoman and family. close family friends. there was no secret listening in on this phone call. the widow put it on speaker phone. she wanted everyone to hear it. but, is the chief of staff holding the media, holding a democratic congresswoman to a higher standard than he is his boss, the president of the united states when it comes to politicizing these condolence calls? >> well, in fact gt administration can be seen, including chief of staff kelly as politicizing this call. meaning this started with the
comments of the president, which were shocking, to everyone listening, and all of a sudden this is blown up into a rather big issue. here you have the chief of staff going after a congresswoman who is in fact a family friend of the deceased. >> it would have been nice just to hear the chief of staff hold his boss accountable. this started with sara murray asking the question why haven't we heard anything about you so far about the soldiers killed in niger. a very simple answer, still looking for answers. we mourn those american heros and their families. but, he didn't do that. he didn't want this to end. personalgrievances. >> it still remains unclear why he didn't come out sooner. he was tweeting a lot about the nfl. but i it wouldn't move on to something else that was very extraordinary yesterday. we heard from former president bush, george w. bush as well as
former president obama but what was stunning was hearing from george w. bush. hearing from a republican essentially bashing a republican sitting president. what does ta say -- >> not by name. >> not by name. >> let's listen to it first. >> we've seen our discourse degraded by casual cruelty. at times, it could seem like the forces pulling us apart are stronger than the forces binding us together. we've seen nationalism des torted into nativism. >> instead of looking for ways to work together and get things done in a practical way, we got folks who are deliberately trying to make folks angry. to demonize people who have different ideas. to get the base all riled up. >> bush went eight years without criticizing obama, but he's clearly criticizing trump. what does it say about thetate
of the republican party? >> i think there are many people in the republican party who have two fears. one in the short term what happens to republican party under president trump, what are the kinds of political losses they will suffer and one is larger. i think you're hearing general concerns by former president bush, and here within the united states, to a party that plays to an extremist base rather than what bush wanted to do was to broaden the coalition of the gop and create a permanent majority. i think he sees president trump going in the exact opposite direction shrinking what it means to be a republican. >> put your historian cap on. on the yes or no question. have we ever seen this before? >> not like this. we've seen former presidents back in political frey, but not like what we saw yesterday. >> we have not seen paul ryan
provide levity. jokes last night at the al-smith dinner. >> i know last year that donald trump offended some people. i know his comments according to critics, went too far. some said it was unbecoming of a public figure. and they said that his comments were offensive. well, thank god he's learned his lesson. every morning, i wake up in my office and i scroll twitter to see which tweets i'll have to pretend i did not see later on. >> it's not clear if he'll be sbject to a tweet storm later this morning but how do those types of moments humanize politicians? skbl. >> >> this shows they understand some of the problems that exist. when you hear someone make a joke, it's easier to relate to them.
people will ask if he can joke about these things why isn't the republican party actually doing something about the issues they're joking about. the that's a natural question for many people to ask. >> the answer is they want tax reform. >> they want tax reform and a majority. >> all right. great to have you. have a good weekend. all right. america's labor market is red hot. job less claims hit the lowest level in 44 years. the fewest filing for employment benefits since 1973. it could also be a rebound in hurricane related job losses. the storms could also be the reason for this low count. the labor department said it's difficult to collect precise numbers in puerto rico, u.s. virgin islands and florida. power outages and infrastructure
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one that keeps you connected to what matters most. arwa da well president trump meeting with the governor of pruerto rio giving his administration's response to hurricane maria a perfect 10 out of 10. the president arguing the damage was quote worse than katrina, this, just weeks after saying during his visit there that maria wasn't a real catastrophe like katrina. meantime, recovery efforts are
proceeding slowly. cnn's bill weir joins us now. >>reporter: renee, dave, about 3 million americans spent another night in the dark and heat without power. that is the question on so many minds here. when is it coming back on? i went looking for answers and i started at a place that you might actually recognize. ♪ >> it is this most popular music video ever. luis fonsi and daddy yankees's desposito has been viewed on youtube over 4 million times. most of that audience probably didn't realize the video was shot in la perla. for years, this place was written off as being drug and gang infested community organizers fought against that stigma. the hasn't been a murder here in six years, then came desposito and suddenly this was a tourist
destination. then came maria. the excited scramble for a single bag of ice is proof that potable water and power are still elusive luxuries over a month after maria. which puts enormous pressure on the men paid to electrify puerto rico. they are journeymen lineman contracted by white fish energy. you know the headline down here was how tdid you get this contract. >> we've been around for a few years and specialize in difficult mountainous ter ren. >> white fish energy is not the only power company working on
this. there was another multi million dollar contract handed out to a much more established company yesterday but senator marco rubio says the army corps of engineers is trying to come up with a plan to fix the power grid in puerto rico. back to you. >> long road ahead. mean while, the north -- pyongyang has taken the unprecedented step of sending letters to several countries urging them to unite against the quote heinous and reckless moves of the trump administration. only australia confirmed it received the note. el the repeating of warning that the north is ready to retaliate. >> all right. well the los angeles dodgers back in the world series for the first time in 29 years. that's a long time. that comes after crushing the
defending champion chicago cubs 11-1 last night in game 5 of the nlcs. it was an epic night for enrique hernandez, the utility player blasting three home runs and driving in a post season record seven runs for the dodgers. the fall classic begins tuesday night with la awaiting the winner of the yankees/astros series, which could be decided tonight in houston. i know -- >> could be. we want a game 7. tuesday in la, 102 degrees record heat. they won't mind it in la. all right the wars just got messy. lyft raising a billion bucks. what does that mean for uber. details next. but first, beauty industry is full of very big names butsome
how the new beauty brand has developed a cult following. here's how the founder is using social media to find new customers. >> gloss ya is different in any ways from most beauty companies. we're not interested in making a bunch of stuff and throwing it at the wall and seeing what sticks. we also are available direct to consumer. we don't sell to department stores or multi brand stores. we're able to communicate directly with our customers, we know exactly who she is, exactly what her preferences are, how to personalize to her needs. and we're able to ask her what she wants. >> my relationship is beauty is complex. i think of it like dressing up, like clothing. it's a way to feel good, to feel your best, and to expresserself. >> we may be three years old but this is still very much day one
after driving isis out of the syrian city. cnn is live in raqqa this morning. let's turn to arwa damon, she is live. >>reporter: good morning. we're actually at the said yum where the final battle against isis took place inside raqqa. you have a ceremony attended by various different fighters as well as local leaders, tribal leaders. and then you have the wreckage of the stadium itself. in h the lower levels you can see the length that isis went to try to fortify itself, especially in this position. isis fighters punched holes through the walls creating something of a rat run so they could move through undetected. it's also where they held many of the prisoners believed to have been the largest isis
prison inside raqqa. it is surrounded by sheer and total devastation. this entire city has been decimated. you barely even find traces of the life that was. the people who are attending the ceremony, they are by and large the individuals who are going to be tasked with trying to somehow rebuild this city. members of the raqqa civil council. >> all right. the brave arwa damon. thank you so much. let's give a check on cnn "money" stream. global stocks higher after the dow and s & p 500 managed record highs. stoc stocks rose after yell yen's term up. apple dropped 2.4% on reports of
low iphone sales. plig workers can stash away $500 more for requirement in 2018. the government will raise the 401 k contribution to $18,0005000 from the current level of 18,000. money in your 401 k grows tax free so it's a good way to save on retirement but there's a limit on how much you can contribute. the irs re-assesses annually. google parent alphabet is leading an investment in lyft. this pushes lyft's value to $11 billion. but that's still a distant second to uber worth about $70 billion. this could help lyft while uber tries to recover from pr
disasters. well, it's great to join us and thank you for joining us. well, it's great to join you. i'm rene marsh. i'm dave briggs. have a great weekend, everybody. we'll see you monday. president trump on the attack again using congresswoman wilson of lying. >> he said i guess he knew what he was getting into. >> his way tried to express he's a brave man. he knew what he was getting himself into. >> he was trying to do damage repair. >> he called her an empty barrel. >> why are we trying to be cruel to each other? that's not who we are. >> if you have anything to say other than this is a tragedy get some duct tape out and shut up. >> had