combined with everything you don't know about technology. what could possibly go wrong? >> does a good job at making stories palatable, possible to understand. thanks for joining us. i'm christine romans. >> dave briggs. and this is cnn breaking news. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. this is "new day". it is wednesday, march 14th, 6:00 here in new york. and we do begin with breaking news. the special election for house seat in pennsylvania is too close to call. too close for cnn to call. but that did not stop democrat conor lamb from declaring his own victory over rick saccone. here's where we are a at this hour. it could change during our show. lamb holds a narrow lead of just over 600 votes. absentee and provisional ballots
are still being counted. >> the big khroe is when the state or commonwealth in this case suffice the election results. the secretary of state will do that. we're watching. lamb's strong showing is sure to make republicans anxious about the november midterm elections. it is also a message to democrats about what kinds of candidates need to be cultivated to be competitive in gop districts. all this as we are told to expect morin stability after yesterday's public firing of secretary of state rex tillerson. question is who is next to go? we have it all covered. let's begin with alex marquardt in canonsburg, pennsylvania. >> an extraordinary night. they said it would be close. and look at these numbers. the two candidates, now that all the ballots are in, are divided
by just .2%. we just got a new batch of votes. lamb is still leading with 641 votes. from our understanding is saccone could still pull it out in the remaining votes. it is a long shot, but he could still do it. that's why he didn't concede last night. had the two canndidate went to bed, he had not been seated. >> it took a little longer than we thought, but we did it. tonight we is celebrate regaining our voice and our vote in the great business of governing this country with we love. >> we're still fighting the fight. it's not over yet. we're going to fight all the way to the end. you know i never give up. >> reporter: now, i spoke with the saccone lamp after the victory speech.
they said they will wake up at home. they will figure out the best way forward and what their options are. why this is such a an incredibly important election, this is a district where, as you mentioned, trump won in 2016 with 20% of the vote. the last two congressional races in 2014 and 2016 democrats didn't even field a candidate. an incredible amount of money was spent on this race. $10.7 million from outside groups backing rick saccone. it would be a huge embarrassment if they were to lose this district. another interesting facet is it's largely symbolic. these two men, if they want to be in office, if they want to be in congress after the midterms in november, they're going to have to run again. pennsylvania state supreme court ruled that the congressional districts that are jerry manned
erred. they have looking like saccone will have to run in the new 14th district and lamb in the new 17th district. no more mention of this 18th district. alisyn, chris, there is a possibility that both of these men could be in congress after november. >> okay. thank you very much, alex. we will keep checking back as the numbers tick up. we have john avlon and ed brownstein. great to see both of you. let's assume conor lamb is the winner. if it's just mostly symbolic, what does this say? does it say more about how republicans are feeling today or are democrats activated? >> this is a wild night. showing every vote matters. but the reason it really matters, it's a question of whether we have a cryst crystallization of the blue wave that the democrats are hoping and praying for, the long ball the take back the house in '18.
this is a district that is classic. it is a trump district in a classic swing state that not only he won 20 points ago. but democrats didn't even field a candidate the last two times. regardless of the outcome, and lamb is keeping a close edge, use a confirmation this blue wave is real. that means democrats are motivated, republicans are depressed and swing voters are swinging against trump toward the "d". >> there are 1,400 ballots out there still to be read. saccone has to win about 70% of them to overcome the gap with lamb right now. what do you see and what is relevant about this district? what is the message for the gop and the democrats going forward? >> the first point is the one john made. it continues the pattern we see, enormous democratic energy and a surge in democratic turnout. if you pair total votes to what
hillary clinton got in 2016, it is a much higher percentage what that is saccone was able to match up. on the other hand, i would say that this says that the white working class communities are still a tough, tough slog for the democrats. conor lamb did better than hillary clinton, as you point out. still in the most white blue collar, washington county, 53%, they are gains but still tough, grudging gains from 2016 in those areas. it says to me that the principle democratic opportunity is white collar suburbs. the part of the district where lamb did better -- did best, around allegheny. places that look like that are the epicenter of republican vulnerability in 2018.
but this also shows the democrat with the right candidates, what rahm emanuel did in 2006, when he ran in red leaning areas, can put some of those plates in place. a couple districts in iowa. maybe central valley in california. democrats have to localize. but after last night the principle vulnerability remains more white collar than blue collar, even though lamb made some gains there. >> isn't that a message, to chris's point, the kind of candidate if you want to win over is the conor lamb model is veteran, personal pro life. >> anti-pelosi. anti-gun control. >> that's a big deal. and it goes to the heart of the war that we don't talk about. hillary-bernie divide.
they are not going to pick up seats like this to have the majority. conor lamb does check off all the litmus test boxes. he is tight with unions, but former federal prosecutor. he would not support pelosi, therefore blunting that attack from the right. democrats need to tack it to heart. both parties have to play beyond their base. the fact that this is won in suburban districts outside pittsburgh, allegheny county, that he wants a crucial stretch for democrats. we don't know who won yet. >> why don't parties usually like to do this? conor lamb is an independent-democrat hybrid. >> look, the idea -- it's very hard to build -- given the diversity of the country, it's hard to build a 218-seat majority if everyone is in
lockstep. he is a blue dog democrat. on economic issues, he ran against the trump tax cut, defended social security and medicare. he defended unions, as john said. he is someone who is someone extinct. it is not as though they have to be culturally con receiver active. you really have to look at this through two different lanes. you have the blue collar places where they made enormous gains. they followed the path and won in 2016. you do need more cultural concerted democrats. that was shown in 2006. in the big metros outside philadelphia, orange county, connecticut, denver, minneapolis, chicago, they may be better to the left particularly with things like guns. the message is one size does not fit all to. win a majority, you have to be a
coalition. >> which is why a straight jacket doesn't work for parties trying to reach a majority. one final thing that ron mentioned. in '06, rahm emanuel in the house and chuck schumer on the other side. you can see signs of this coming forward for '18. >> the overall level of democratic energy. that is just important here. you are seeing consistently in race after race, democrats are overperforming. it doesn't mean everyone that is less than plus 20, has been to be clicking in their boots don't. particularly in the white collar suburbs, a big movement away from the runs. last night was the first time we saw any crack in that defense, the blue collar, even though democrats won over 70% of noncollege whites in those
elections. that could not have happened for it to be this close. a tough terrain for democrats but beginning of an open in the wall that conor lamb showed. cultural conservative and new deal economics. you can committee in these places even if it's tough. >> thank you very much. we'll obviously watch it throughout the program. coming up in our next hour, the candidate conor lamb, who is claiming victory, the join us on "new day". another staff shakeup at the white house. more senior administration officials may be out, even this week. what does this say about the future of team trump? we discuss. ways to lose stubborn belly fat. the roasted core wrap. 3, 2, 1... not cool. freezing away fat cells with coolsculpting? now that's cool!
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it's worth it. >> all right. the style of the way rex tillerson was fired in a criticism. but you have a major part of the executive out. he may not be the last. that's something that we must discuss. the president signaling more fires could be coming. cnn's abby phillip live at the white house with more. whom do we think will be next? why are these changes happening? what do we know? >> reporter: the president is in the mood of firing people this week. he's starting to get rid of
these advisers who he clashed with on a personality and policy level. and senior adviser to the administration tells us there could be more coming as soon as this week, chris. >> i'm really at a point where we're getting close to having the cabinet and other things that are that i want. >> reporter: president trump hinting more senior officials could be on the chopping block after abruptly firing secretary of state rex tillerson on twitter. sources tell cnn that national security adviser h.r. mcmaster could soon be headed out the door and that president trump has been pursuing potential replacements for chief of staff john kelly, despite praising him on tuesday while speaking to marines. >> i think he likes what you do better than what he does, but he's doing a great job. he misses you. >> reporter: sources say the president has also grown irritated with david shulkin and is making plans to remove him. mr. trump eyeing rick perry as
his replacement, citing foreign policy stkpraeplts as the reason for his firing. >> we disagreed on things. when you look at the iran deal, i think it's terrible. i guess he thought it was okay. i wanted to either break it or do something, and he felt a little bit differently. so we were not really thinking the same. tkpwh >> reporter: by contrast, placing mike pompeo, who he chose as tillerson's replacement. >> we are always on the same wavelength. the relationship has been good. that's what i need as secretary of state. >> reporter: he will enter a state department void of senior leaders. at the cia, current deputy director and 30-year veteran is his pick, which would make sure
the fir the first woman leader of the agency. she played a role in the agency's destruction of tapes of torture of detainees. >> she implemented orders and was doing her job. gina is a solid professional. she has great experience. >> reporter: president trump also firing husband long-time personal assistant john macatk macken tee sources say he was escorted from the white house on tuesday but shortly afterwards the president's reelection campaign announced that he will be joining as senior adviser. when president trump is facing a situation where he now has a lot of senior aides he needs to fill at the state department but he is losing them at a rapid pace.
tillerson and mcentee, hope hicks, the communications director josh raphael, bob poro or and others. he is heading to a boeing plant in st. louis. >> abby, thank you very much. let's bring in john avlon and david gregory. you have how the tillerson thing was handled. that made a lot of waves. and then the simply reality that trump continues to thin out the ranks and put in loyalists. where are your concerns? >> well, first of all, on style what you see is the president seeming very confident. there is a lot of spin there that now he is getting it the way he wants it. this is not the way he wanted it. he has a chaotic administration that reflects his own erratic
behavior and decision making. in this particular instance he has somebody who is closer -- not to his personality but to his thinking on hot button issues internationally. he is a hard liner. certainly a hard liner on issues like north korea and iran. but he has proven himself to be a shrewd insider not just within the west wing but in the government overall, which is a plus for the country and a plus for the role as secretary of state. what i think is of concern is that the president still out of his own insecurity goes out of his way to show he's in charge by breaking the china as much as he can. by the way, i'm the boss. he leaves that out. in case anybody tpheufd that, that's what he's saying. he's the boss. he's in control. he's feeling confident. it is going to be done his way.
note one difference the way they get fired. hope hicks to h.r. mcmaster, noise the president with his presentations and the like, to a guy like jim mattis, who is no shrinking violet. but you never hear from him publicly. he does all of his work privately. that's what the president prefers. >> here is a list of who he is considering firing next. david shulkin secretary of veteran affairs. jeff sessions, as we know. h.r. mcmaster. john kelly, who as we know has been in the cross-hairs. ryan zinke. who forced him to have the last cabinet? who speaks for those? >> exactly. item kael they begin fietypical
fielding their best team. it is a sign of dysfunction. tillerson lasted 14 months as secretary of state. that is 42 scaramuccis, which is the official new measurement. bad blood between those signs. tea party congressman. his v.a. secretary may be next. his national security adviser, possibly his chief of staff. you're doing a great job is the new euphemism for you're going to be fired soon. >> two parts of the trump base, david, they will hear this. shake is it up. shake it up. they will gloss over the fact that he is shaking up his own
mistakes. there is no leadership. that means the mandate, different operational capacities. they already have all of these staffing all over the place. i don't know if we have a graphic on that. 18 months into this administration, they haven't been made. you're underperforming when you don't have the leadership in place. that matters too. >> it does. in this way, i'm sorry. i think there is a new opportunity for pompeo. i have the same question for rex tillerson yesterday as i did on day one, which is what were you thinking coming to work for this president given your background. he did not cover himself in glory. he was not accountable to the press. he showed a kind of -- at some level, kind of disdain for diplomacy compared to how he used to do things. mike pompeo, coming from the
cia, a tough bureaucracy, get it back in play. because maybe you saw henry kissing quoted in the "new york times", he understands the linkages being close to this president. that may be better for capacity. what john was alluding to in national security, you have to have good lines of communications and good interagency process. how does state deal with the defense, deal with the cia, the national security adviser and ultimately the president. what worries me is what the president is doing is purging people who can effectively say put the brakes on this, think about this differently. he may not feel that he needs the influence, the tutoring that he needed in that first year. >> let's talk about gina haspel, the president's pick to head the cia as pomp peyo moves on. she was notable because she ran
this secret prison in thailand where there were brutal interrogation. it was one of the darkest chapters in american history. the senate must do its job in scrutinizing the record and involvement of gina haspel in this disgraceful program. >> i think she will still make the republican majority. and the elevation of senior members of these life staff, at the cia. george tenet being an example. a lot of times the political appointees don't last long and are bad for morale. she was also was implicated in an attempt to destroy tapes of waterboarding procedures. >> her role and responsibility is going to be vague.
phil mudd puts it well. you all know him. you can't hold someone accountable for operating a program that was decided above their head. so that will be awe fair point of analysis as well. gentlemen, thank you. he was widely regarded as the plan the et's preefpl tphepbt scientist. a look back at the remarkable life of stephen hawking next.
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knowledge of the purchase. they eventually canceled the order claiming he was surprised by the price tag. we have breaking "news now". the world mourning the news that famed scientist stephen hawking died at the age of 76. the physicist and astronomer lived an in criminal life after a debating lifelong battle with als and making science popular and cool. he was best known for his work on relativity and black holes. think of it permeating the fabric of space time that defies measure. well said. he left his mark on pop culture on "the big bang theory" and "the simpson's" "the theory of
everything" movie unexpired by his life. steven hauging pass away at age 76. >> big loss. where will the next generation of great thinkers come from? >> just the idea that he not only survived with als but thrived. and he had such a robust career with als. even when his physical shell failed him and broke down, that he was able to mentally be so strong. >> especially in a culture that doesn't often value in heroes science and thinkers and philosophe philosophers. he will be sorely missed. it latest winter storm stalls of the eastern u.s. that means bad things. there's another blast of cold air behind it. hundreds of thousands are still without power. cnn meteorologist chad myers has
your forecast. when i started watching the models showing it slowing down and stopping, never a good thing. >> never a good thing. picking up just buckets and buckets of snow. we have at least two feet of snow in many areas from maine, massachusetts, rhode island. even a foot and a half on eastern long island. this weather is tpwraoult by green mountain coffee roasters. packed with goodness. we are going to need warmth out there. hundreds of thousands without power. make sure if you know someone without power that they have a place to go. this is cold air. windchills will be below zero in many spots. we will see some snow today but not like yesterday. one to two inches, even in the higher el gas stations of new hampshire and maine. probably only 3 to 4. most of the snow will be well to the north. does spring ever show up?
yes, in the south by the weekend. another shot of cold air next week. we will see if that brings another snowstorm later today. >> how dare you, chad. >> i know. i'm sorry. moving on. the revolving door at the white house in overdrive with the firing of rex tillerson. does this create a national security risk? michael hayden here on that next. why is dark magic so spell-bindingly good? it's a bold blend of coffee with rich flavors of uganda, sumatra, colombia and other parts of south america. like these mountains, each amazing on their own. but together? magical. all, for a smoother tasting cup of coffee. green mountain coffee roasters. the toothpaste that helps prevent bleeding gums. if you spit blood when you brush or floss you may have gum problems and could be on the journey to much worse. help stop the journey of gum disease. try parodontax toothpaste. ♪
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president trump signaling that the shakeup may be just the beginning. what does this chaos and all the vacancies mean for national security? cnn national security analyst and the former director of the cia and nsa. general, thank you so much for being here. >> good morning. >> secretary of state rex tillerson fired. any cause for concern from you? >> i mean, what you've got here are both risk and opportunity. certainly the way it was done leaves an awful lot to be
desired. now you have someone, secretary of state mike pompeo, who enjoys far more the confidence of the president. when the secretary of state speaks, the rest of the world will more believe that is the position of the american government that is representative of the president. the dark side of that, the one that makes it a bit more challenging, is i think truly director pompeo sees the world much the way president trump sees the world. and secretary tillerson formed i think a very useful function as a counterpoint sometimes to the president's instinctive, spontaneous reactions to events. so things are going to be different here. >> right. this is not a team of rivals. this is a team of people in lockstep in terms of their world view. what do you think that means for the u.s. interactions in all of these hot spots? let's just start with north
korea. >> well, first of all, in general is, alisyn, i go back to an awful lot of the on president's campaign rhetoric and the things he tweeted the last 15 months. i think those are going to be actuated a lot more than the guard rails out there but some of these other individuals in government. we will go and negotiate with the north koreans. actually mike pompeo is skeptical they will give up their weapons. the area i think where the president and the new secretary most closely align is to the eye rain undeal. that is something tillerson pushed back on. mattis recalled mattis and tillerson cooperated a lot, met
very often, had similar world views. now i think secretary mattis will find himself a bit more isolated when these decisions are made. >> what does this mean for national security. let me put up a graphic to show not only is there chaos in terms of this staffing, but there are vacancies. 42 ambassadors, no nominee yet. 20 assistant and undersecretaries in the state department. no nominee. and then with when you look at the state department changes, you see at the top, rex tillerson. he's gone. let me just show you this pyramid. there is one guy left. there's all sorts of undersecretaries and deputies that are vacant. so does this have ramifications for national security? >> it certainly does. part of that, alisyn, i think is intentional, a little deconstruction of the administrative state if you will. the director was a strong manager at cia. now he will move over c street
to the state department. i think he will bring the drive, management skills to state which i think the members of the state department will find to be heartening, something they will want the secretary to do. the secretary pushing back, for example, on some of the budget cuts that secretary tillerson seems willing to accept. >> just to expand on the deconstruction of the sort of bureaucratic state, maybe we don't need all of these filled. the country is still functioning. maybe we could save some salaries here. >> as a federal bureaucrat for 40 years, i would never say you have the right number here and you can't cut anyway. certainly there is a watt loss program that the bureaucracy could undergo. but that said, alisyn, the strength of the american government is that professional cohort that reaches beyond
administrations and provides the kinds of expertise that frankly in many instances only the american government has. so i think on balance those vacancies hurt us particularly now as we are running up to some pretty key decisions. korea, russia, iran, and so on. >> i want to ask you about gina haspel, the president's choice to lead the cia. she, as you know, oversaw this secret thai prison where they used brutal tactics including waterboarding. what do you think of her? >> i think a lot of her. cia is the calmest institution in the federal government today because they know who their next director is going to be and they have great confidence in her. so that's one very important data point. second, with regard to gina and the agency's history, gina did her duty. gina was asked to go do hard things on behalf of the country, asked to do that by her
director, by her country, and with the sanction and validation of the department of justice at the time. and so i think that issue has been litigated. it has been asked and answered. frankly, if anyone is worried that gina's nomination suggests the cia is going back to this, let me remind folks of what i said when she was selected to be the deputy director last year. her choice indicated that the agency intended to neither repudiate or repeat its past. look, gina loves the agency. the agency feels, i think, a genuine since of betrayal as to what happened to the agency as we shifted administrations. and many cia case officers were hung out to dry. gina is never going to put her officers in that kind of situation. we aren't going back to enhanced interrogation. >> general hayden, always great
to get your perspective on this. thank you. >> thank you. students and teachers are preparing to walk out of school to protest gun violence and honor victims of the parkland massacre. one senator who is behind them joins us next. ways to lose stubborn belly fat. the roasted core wrap. 3, 2, 1... not cool. freezing away fat cells with coolsculpting? now that's cool! coolsculpting safely freezes and removes fat cells with little or no downtime. and no surgery. results and patient experience may vary. some rare side effects include temporary numbness, discomfort and swelling. ask your doctor if coolsculpting is right for you and visit coolsculpting.com today... for your chance to win a free treatment.
welcome to the entirely new expedition. the word moron is back in the spotlight now that secretary of state rex tillerson has been given the axe. jeanne moos takes a look back at that unforgettable moment. >> reporter: when you call a boss the moron, don't expect a pat on the back. now that president trump has given rex tillerson the boot, it gives everyone a chance to rehash the "m" word. >> a moron. >> moron. >> moron. >> calls him something like a moron. >> apparently privately called the president a moron. >> the president never got over that. >> reporter: the to be entirely accurate. >> he said an ef f-ing moron. >> reporter: they left that modifier out of the question the president couldn't quite make out. >> did you fire him because he
called you a moron? >> reporter: then chose to ignore. tillerson is no moron. he knows how to not answer a question. >> is it true? if you call him a moron? >> i'm not going to deal with that petty stuff. that is a really old question. you want to make a game out of it, and i'm not playing. >> did you call the president a moron? >> i'm not going to dig phi the question. >> reporter: the president dignified it by saying we will have to compare iq tests and i can tell you who is going to win. >> i know i have an iq better than all of them. >> because i have a good brain. >> reporter: there were happier times, we had have the hashtag rexit. now that tillerson waved good-bye, a at least neither he nor the president will have to put up with i'm with moron jokes. jeanne moos, cnn. >> i think rex will be much happier now.
>> reporter: new york. >> this was not an easy go for rex tillerson, especially with what he was used to doing. he was completely in control. there was continuity of leadership with what he was dealing with. >> despite that, in that statement yesterday put out by one of his lieutenants, he said he liked the position, wanted to stay in the position, was surprised by at blueprint firing and hoped to do welby the american people. >> i think working for trump was a bad fit for him. >> you think? >> and he also learned a listen. if you say something, you have to own it. saying you're not going to answer the question isn't going to work. you have to deal the consequences of it. he shouldn't havesaiditif he didn't want to back it up. students waking a walkout today for 17 minutes in honor of the 17 students gunned down at
marjory stoneman douglas. cnn's dianne gallagher has more. >> it makes me feel like we are making an impact and doing something. >> reporter: the students of marjory stoneman douglas high school say they want to go down in history as more than just survivors. they want to be the force behind gun reform. >> it's crazy that it took something like a school shooting for all of this to happen. but it's now or never. >> that we don't know what we're talking about, we're too young to understand? >> in the wake of unbearable personal pain. >> it's been hard sometimes. sometimes i grieve. sometimes i'm in anger. >> reporter: the impact of their
advocacy is sometimes stroked with a pen. >> not to be, i don't know, cocky, i'm proud and it's all because of us. it's because we have been fighting. i have no doubt that bill wouldn't have passed. >> i think that's part of the process. start at state and move it up to a national level. >> we're going to get universal background checks. >> reporter: but their efforts in washington haven't moved at the same rapid pace, if at all. >> we know our ledge shaper, that is not going to happen. we understand that. that's because we're educated and because we're -- we understand the way that the law works. >> it is hard to not feel upset by the reaction in washington. but we're going to be there.
>> they vice president seen us. they haven't seen what we have to offer. >> yet. >> you could tell we weren't going to take no for an answer. i hope parkland is representation of what america could be and should be. >> reporter: they don't plan on stopping until gun reform spreads across the country. >> so true. they are not slowing down, not stopping. we will go to d.c. to report march 24th on the march. we will see what kind of turnout they get. >> march will be big. there are a lot of different elements that are pushing towards the same thing.
we just got married. we're all under one roof now. congratulations. thank you. how many kids? my two. his three. along with two dogs and jake, our new parrot. that is quite the family. quite a lot of colleges to pay for though. a lot of colleges. you get any financial advice? yeah, but i'm pretty sure it's the same plan they sold me before. well your situation's totally changed now. right, right. how 'bout a plan that works for 5 kids, 2 dogs and jake over here? that would be great. that would be great. that okay with you, jake? get a portfolio that works for you now
>> i'm getting close to having the cabinet that i want. >> i have never seen a presidential administration so basically disorganized. >> mike mpompeo recognizes the need for the state department. >> this is "new day" with chris cuomo and alisyn camerota. >> donald trump beat clinton by 20 points, actually more than that, in 2016. >> lamb's lead is narrow. absentee and provisional ballots are still being counted.
president trump won by 20 points. it is sure to make republicans a bit anxious about the november midterm elections. lamb is already looking ahead. but saccone is not giving up yet. >> you know we're still fighting the fight. it's not over yet. eer going to fight all the way to the end. you know i never give up. >> we celebrate regaining our voice and vote in governing this great country we love. thank you. >> joining us now is the conor lamb. good morning. >> good morning. >> i hesitate to call you congressman-elect because it feels a tad premature because the votes are still being counted. why are you so confident? >> one of my strengths is we