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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  June 20, 2018 1:00pm-2:00pm PDT

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>> thank you, space camp, for having me back again. we're going to continue to share these inspirational stories all week long, and you can watch "champions for change," it's a one-hour special this saturday at 8:00 p.m. eastern here on cnn. i'm brooke baldwin. thanks for being with me. "the lead" with jake tapper starts right now. thanks, brooke. why didn't he do this 2,000 kids ago? "the lead" starts right now. under intense political pressure brought on by the outrage over images and sounds of kids in cages, calling out for their parents, president trump finally signs an order which he says will stop his family separation practice at the border. but it didn't really sound like he wanted to. as republicans are warned that president trump's immigration crisis could sink them, brand new cnn polls we're releasing right now on "the lead" are giving us the newest snapshot of the intense battle coming for corning control. plus, what now?
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how the president's action to keep families together could trigger a new crisis at the border. what would that be? this is cnn breaking news. >> good afternoon. welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. we begin today with breaking news on our politics lead, under assault from all sides under a policy that separated children from their parents at the border, president trump did something today that we have never before seen him do as president. he surrendered, taking a step for weeks he falsely insisted was not possible. he stopped the practice of child separation himself, he says. the president claimed he was not backing down, but he did just sign an executive order that he said would, quote, keep families together while ensuring we have a powerful border. the president acknowledging there was pressure from both his wife and his daughter, ivanka, to end the separation policy that his own administration policy instituted. >> ivanka feels very strongly, my wife feels very strongly about it, i feel very strongly about it. i think anybody with a heart would feel very strongly about it. we don't like to see families
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separated. at the same time, we don't want people coming into our country illegally. >> president trump also faced pleas from republicans on capitol hill to stop the new practice at the border, which could prove calamitous, they fear, to them at the polls in november. we're getting a new look, meanwhile, at the headwinds that congressional republicans already are facing. on the generic ballaot, democras are gaining even more of an advantage. our polling shows democrats beating republicans by eight points on the generic ballot, a five-point boost for democrats since last month. that eight-point advantage, experts say, could be enough to flip the house to democratic control in november, especially when combined with the significant enthusiasm gap. our new poll showing that 55% of democrats say they're enthusiastic about voting in november, comparing with 40% of republicans, a 15-point gap. bad news for republicans who obviously need to do a better job of getting their voters excited and heading to the polls. this hour, president trump is trying to do just that.
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he's aboard air force one hitting the campaign trail, ramping up his political schedule at the exact same time the republicans are on the defensive over the child separation practice which the president says he ended. a rare retreat by a president who prides himself on never apologizing. the pressure on the administration against the policy hit something of a fever pitch yesterday with senate republicans announcing they unanimously opposed it. in addition, the president's homeland security secretary was accosted and shouted down by democratic socialists as she tried to eat at a mexican restaurant last night. the sounds of crying children were blared on speakers played by a democratic super pac as big donors hit a trump hotel fund-raiser. and then, of course, his former campaign manager, corey lewandowski was lambasted to news o a little girl with down syndrome, separated from her mother at the border. cnn's kaitlan collins joins me live at the white house. do we know exactly what got president trump to completely flip and decide he wants to sign this order? >> reporter: well, jake, that's the question i asked president
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trump in the oval office, that he chose not to answer. what we are witnessing is something we rarely if ever have seen from president trump, and that is trump backing down. now, as he sat there at the resolute desk, signing this executive order on ending the separation of families at the border, he stood next to the department of homeland security secretary, kerr ststin nelson, said three days ago this is a policy that didn't exist. president trump abruptly reversing course today, signing an executive order to end the separation of families on the border. >> so we're going to have strong, very strong borders, but we're going to keep the families together. i didn't like the sight or the feeling of families being separated. >> reporter: a striking about-face from a president who has refused to back down, insisting only yesterday that he had just two choices. >> those are the only two options, totally open borders or
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criminal prosecution, for law-breaking. >> reporter: contradicting himself. >> wait, wait. you can't do it to an executive order. >> reporter: and aides who have maintained their hands were tied. >> i think at the end, congress has the power to fix this. >> congress and the courts crd this problem, and congress alone can fix it. >> reporter: trump now hoping to diffuse a crisis of his own making on the southern border with the stroke of his pen. but an executive order isn't required to end the separations. sources telling cnn, the president wanted to look decisive, telling aides it would look badly if he reversed the policy quietly. >> the dilemma is that if you're weak -- if you're weak, which some people would like you to be -- if you're really, really pathetically weak, the country is going to be overrun with millions of people. and if you're strong, then you don't have any heart. >> reporter: tensions reached a boiling point in recent days as images of children separated
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from their parents and kept in cages continued to surface. the secretary of homeland security kirsten nelson, confronted by protesters while dining at a mexican restaurant in washington. >> if kids don't eat in peace, you don't eat in peace! >> reporter: trump telling aides he knew the images looked bad politically, but insisting the media was only showing the worst ones. >> those images affect everybody, but i have to say that you have double standards. >> reporter: but the administration could be back to square one in a matter of days. sources say the executive order won't end the zero tolerance policy that led to the separations in the first place, and an order could create an entire slew of legal problems. >> we're going to keep families together, but we still have to maintain toughness or our country will be overrun by people, by crime, by all of the things that we don't stand for, that we don't want. >> reporter: now the text of this executive order that the
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president signed does instruct families to be kept together when possible. but during that signing in the oval office shortly before the president left the white house, he did say that this could be open to legal issues with this executive order. and still referenced legislation which shows, jake, that though the president is reversing course here, we still could be a ways away from the end of all of this. >> kaitlan collins at the white house for us, thank you so much. my political panel joins me now. we're going to dive into immigration throughout the whole show. i do want to start with this new cnn polling. let's put the numbers back up, showing that democrats win in a generic ballot. an 8% gap that is a five-point bounce from last month. josh holmes, you're a professional republican. you want republicans to win the house and senate and keep them. how worried do these numbers make you? >> well, it's bounced around a little bit, but i think this is consistent with what we have seen. the average is of.7, 7% in a midterm where one party controls every lever of congress, it's not abnormal.
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the intensity is another piece that is pretty consistent. i think that the -- where republicans can take heart, at least on the senate side, is the makeup of the electorate in some of these states they're targeted. what we're looking at here, national numbers, reflects an awful lot of people who are in states that frankly don't vote in senate elections in 2018. so, you know, north dakota, missouri, indiana, west virginia, places like that. they're going to be an awful lot more republicans that have very different motivations than the general electorate as a whole. >> let's talk about the enthusiasm gap. a 15-point enthusiasm gap. democrats, 55% enthusiastic vote. republicans, 40%. what's driving the lack of enthusiasm? is it president trump? is it congressional republicans? what do you think? >> well, here's what really worries me. the policies that the administration is pushing are controversial. and it would be one thing if you are making progress on the immigration agenda, because what you're doing. but what they are doing right now is actively encouraging the democratic base to get out the vote while depressing the republican base, because you
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aren't actually getting anything done. look at what happened this week. today president trump is writing an executive order to overturn his administration's own deterrence policy. >> right. >> they have bungled this so badly, all it does is energize democrats and depressed republicans. >> simone, let me ask you. i have to be honest, i'm a little surprised, given all the controversies of this president that the gap isn't bigger for democrats. in 2006, it was something like a 15-point gap. and that ended up being a wave that brought the democrats the house and there was all of a sudden speaker nancy pelosi. this is eight points. we're still a few months out. i'm not saying it's over. but are you surprised that it's not bigger, that gap? >> i'm not surprised it's not bigger. look, when donald trump got elected, there were lots of nefarious things going on, things he said, troubling, problematic things from folks in his camp, now his administration. i'm not surprised the gap is so small. i will say, and i told this to
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the "washington post" a couple weeks ago, i do not think the bulk of this enthusiasm is merely an anti trump enthusiasm. because, again, democrats already didn't like trump. if you don't like trump, what he's done hasn't made you like him any more. i think what a lot of this is folks seeing what is possible. if donald trump can be elected, dammit, so can i. so that's why i think we've seen a record number of women put their name on the ballaot to ru for office as democrats. they are -- every single seat. and all the competitive states have a democrat on the ballot challenging a republican. that is unprecedented. >> so let's talk about one of the headwinds that republicans are facing, which is this child separation issue, even though president trump is obviously trying to quell it with this new executive order. ivanka trump today tweeted, "thank you, potus, president of the united states, for taking critical action, ending family separation at our border. congress must now act consistent with our values."
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thank you, potus? >> i don't care one bit about what she has to say on this issue. you know why? because instead of actually doing some work, she went and asked daddy about the pictures. if she were a real white house policy adviser, she wouldn't ask daddy. she would go down to the border and look for herself, as would the secretary of homeland security, as would steven miller. because you can tell when these people talk, they have not seen this with their own eyes. they have no idea what's happening down there. and so i don't want to hear about pictures. get back to me once you go down and see it. >> yet ivanka trump does wield power and the president said that she and melania trump are two of the main reasons, it sounds like -- he wasn't quoting congressional republicans, that he decided to sign this executive order. >> yeah, i mean, he clearly listens to what she has to say. and in this regard, i think it's a positive thing for the republican party and a positive thing for the country. i share your concern. i think any parent that looks at the situation like we saw on the border would be deeply concerned, and i think ivanka has expressed the concern that
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most people do feel. now, whether or not that she was the only person expressing that or not, i'm certainly glad she did. because we're now in a place where we can put this terrible episode behind us. >> yet it seems like she's trying to cast her dad as thehe. thank you, potus, for taking this critical action, ending separation at our border. this was a practice in full thrust because of -- >> because of the republican administration. i think they think we're stupid. i have said this more times than i would like. but they continuously think that we're stupid. i don't know what ivanka trump thinks she's doing wading in with the tweet. she is a white house policy adviser. so the fact that she had to wait until she saw the photos of dad -- we don't know what she said. but i envision ivanka trump, daddy, can you just do something about the policy? you were a white house adviser, ivanka trump in that position wields a lot of power. but what happens when your power comes merely from proximity and not because you're qualified has you going and doing things like ivanka trump has done today. so, you know, i just -- the trump administration did create this policy. the executive order is not going
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to do anything to, in my opinion, to get to the root of the issue. there is still a zero tolerance policy and that's what we need to have turned over. >> and maybe it's a silver lining. it wasn't until the pictures and the videos came out that anybody cared that these people were supposedly moved. i actually don't buy the idea that melania and ivanka convinced trump. i think he read the media coverage. and maybe the bright side is that republicans when they stand up as they have and said we're not doing this, the governor saying we're sending the national guard to help you do this and we look at the pictures and we're horrified, that can move the president to do the right thing eventually. maybe that's what we can take away from this. >> stick around. we're going to keep talking about immigration and this debate. stay right here. president trump just went after republican congressman mark sanford again, saying he has, quote, never been a fan of his. congressman mark sanford will join me to respond to the president's attacks. stay with us.
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the first workout was you had to do a 1,000 meter rowing. everybody else did it in 25 minutes. it took me an hour and forty six minutes, but i got to the top and i was like, wow, this is breathtakingly beautiful. and i told my friend that night, i said, i want to climb mt. kilimanjaro. there were a ton of challenges with getting into climbing, and the biggest one was the gear. i literally started with bath towels, duct tape to my arms and feet. now to climb i use a carbon fiber special custom shoe. i use those to bear crawl up kilimanjaro. >> for this story and many more, tune into hln this saturday and sunday, noon to 4:00 eastern for great big stories weekend of wonder, brought to you with limited commercial interruption by wells fargo. until... we lost it.
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today, we're renewing our commitment to you. fixing what went wrong. and ending product sales goals for branch bankers. so we can focus on your satisfaction. it's a new day at wells fargo. but it's a lot like our first day. wells fargo. established 1852. re-established 2018. in politics, moments ago, president trump tweeted again about south carolina congressman mark sanford saying, quote, had a great meeting with the house gop last night at the capitol. they applauded and laughed loudly when i mentioned my experience with mark sanford. i have never been a fan of his, unquote. this doesn't match at all what others in the room told us, that, in fact, republicans moaned and groaned and some media accounts said he even was booed. the president seemed to mock sanford's loss in front of his congressional colleagues, his fellow republicans. and it was another tweet from trump hours before the critical
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primary that sanford faced that may have sealed sanford's loss. i spoke to sanford just a few minutes ago. joining me now is congressman mark sanford, republican of south carolina. congressman, good to see you again. thanks for joining us. >> my pleasure. >> yesterday president trump mocked you, mocked your loss in front of your peers. he called you a quote, nasty guy. how do you respond to that? >> you don't. i don't quite understand where the president comes from on any number of different things these days. and so you don't. but i do think it's humbling, one, that in this case the president is booed by colleague in the house who basically said we don't go along with what the president is suggesting. and two, i think that there is a bigger message for all of us to take away from what occurred, because well beyond the president's comments, well beyond the election of the first district, and that is the importance and the value of dissent in our political system. and in this case, largely supported the president and his
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agenda. but because i had spoken up on a number of things that were at odds with stands i had long taken or at odds with people i represented, i was singled out. and i think part of what the president did yesterday was to send a very chilling message to my colleagues on, hey, if you speak up against me, there will be consequences. and i think that's the last thing we need in our political system. >> have you heard from any of your former colleagues who were at the event yesterday? >> i've been overwhelmed by the number of colleagues who have come up and said awfully kind things. >> our new cnn poll shows a generic democrat winning over a republican by eight points. why do you think the republicans are behind? is that a referendum on president trump, do you think? >> again, you know, i'm not an expert on what's happening in terms of national polls and what might come next in the presidency. i just know what i know. and that is i went to an awfully interesting election cycle that was unlike any other that i've experienced in my entire time in
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politics wherein the referendum became not where did i stand on policies that were important to people's lives in the first district of south carolina, but rather, was i for, quote, or against the president. and when i answered -- a nuanced answer which was overwhelmingly i supported him but on these handful of issues, i've differed, that became the focal point in the election and should tell all of us a lot about this, again, inflexion point that we're at as a civilization. is it about ideas and representing our district? or is it simply about blind allegiance to whoever it is that might be at the top? >> do you think the republican party right now is about blind allegiance to president trump? >> i don't think that there's enough pushback, and i'm not alone in saying that. i think there are any number of different folks, whether in media world or in policy world, in business world, who have said there needs to be more vigorous dissent, because that's how ideas get vetted. i mean, the founding fathers
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were so genius in their design in creating a legislative and executive and judicial branches, each of which were a check upon the other. if they wanted just efficiency, they would have gotten a king. but they didn't want that. they wanted dissent. so, you know, the question and your answer i guess has already been answered by a whole lot of different folks who say there ought to be something different these days. >> there was some pushback, it seemed to these images of these undocumented immigrant children having been separated from their parents. president trump saying he just signed an executive order on this issue to stop the separations. how do you think of how the president has handled this policy? >> well, you know, it spun up into the firestorm that it's been, and it puts two i think great american values at odds with each other. one is the principle of law and what does the law mean in our country, what's it mean if you break the law. but the other has been the importance of family as the
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absolute cornerstone, building block, of our civilization. and so we had i think a firestone that legitimately arose based on the way in which this policy that had been enacted by the president seemed to put those two things at odds. >> congressman, have you been disappointed by your colleagues? i know that there are a lot of people in that building who believe in conservative principles, who believe in the separation of powers, who believe in free trade, and i have been just as somebody who has covered this town now for more than a generation surprised at how quiet a lot of people have been about certain issues that i thought they cared a great deal about. >> i would agree with that. i mean, i think that that's the quandary for all of us. there are a lot of great people in this institution, republican and democrat, house and senate. spectacular people. but i think that if you look at the way group dynamics work, if you have a forceful personality, which trump certainly fits that
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bill, it becomes sometimes a bit differently, particularly if your job is on the line, to speak up against. and yet there's never been a more important time to do so as it relates, for instance, to spending. so i think that we do need to speak up, but, again, that's the take-away from this election i just went through, which is, is there a substantial electoral consequence to speaking up and speaking your mind in this particular age that we find ourselves in. >> and obviously, you think there is. do you have any regrets? >> none. i mean, you know, i have my four sons with me and you know those boys. you met them over the campaign trail a number of years that our lives have crossed each other. but they're grown men now and they stood with me. and to a boy, each one of them came up afterwards and said, dad, you made the right call. we're proud of you. and i think that that's the test for every one of us in politics, which is there's always some gray zone out there, and nobody gets it perfect. but to stand on the ideas that you believe in, regardless of
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the consequence, i think becomes particularly important in this time when you've got a dominating personality in the executive branch as we do right now. >> republican congressman mark sanford of south carolina, thanks so much for your time, sir. >> yes, sir. so president trump signi this executive order. what was the tipping point for him? was it the head of dhs being shouted down at a mexican restaurant? was it his former campaign manager, corey lewandowski, seeming to make fun of a child with down syndrome? stay with us. >> shame, shame, shame, shame! when we were dating, we used to get excited about things like concert tickets or a new snowboard. matt: whoo! whoo! jen: but that all changed when we bought a house. matt: voilà! jen: matt started turning into his dad. matt: mm. that's some good mulch. ♪ i'm awake. but it was pretty nifty when jen showed me how easy it was to protect our home and auto with progressive.
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welcome back. you're looking right now at a group of young undocumented immigrant girls, brought to a new york city facility early tuesday morning after being separated from their families according to a source briefed on the matter. a 9-month-old is one of 239 children being housed at the new york city shelter, the result of the family separation practice that president trump says he just reversed. that's according to new york city mayor bill de blasio. he said many need significant mental health services. mayor de blasio demanded more information from the trump administration. >> come clean with the truth. who are these children? how many are they? where are they? what is happening here? how is it possible that none of us knew there were 239 kids right here in our own city? >> i'm back with the panel. and as much as i'm sure
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president trump wants this issue to go away with the signing of the executive order, there's still 2,300 kids out there that have yet to be put back with their parents. we've heard stories about s parents being deported and their kids are still here in the united states. this mess isn't going away any time soon. >> yeah, and there's a much larger group of children who came here without any parents, unaccompanied, that get shoved through the system, dropped off in cities in homes of finding relatives, and nobody knows where they are. we can talk about ending the immediate separation crisis, but these people have to be found. i mean, it's not even clear if we know their names, where they came from or where they're going. they are literally lost in the system. >> how much do you think, if at all, this will have any impact on the midterm elections and on president trump's popularity and unpopularity? >> ordinarily, you would think a lot, right? i mean, this is a truly memorable moment that i think is seared in a lot of people's minds. problem is, there has been such a hurricane of outrages on both sides that we've experienced over the last year-and-a-half.
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and none of it has had a particular resonance that lasts any longer than a week to ten days. we'll see. i think there are a couple things here that may stick. one, just the images of the children themselves, the unforced errors, and in particular, the inability to get your story straight about who is in charge of what. i think that more than anything, even the policy itself, sort of tells middle of the road voters these guys don't know what they're doing. >> there are a lot of democrats out there who intend to make this president trump's hurricane katrina. >> yeah, absolutely. i mean, rightfully so. the policy lays at the feet of the trump administration, and every -- and secretary nielsen, for that matter. so i definitely think this does present an issue for the president that will not go away, because this executive order does not really overturn this policy. i think another question folks will have, what about secretary nielsen? many members of congress have called for her resignation, given her performance at the white house press podium the
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other day. but now we have the white house certainly -- basically saying whatever secretary nielsen said, don't believe her. so how the dhs secretary, who when a crisis happe in this country, when there is a crisis, she is the person who is supposed to stand before the american people and assuage us of our fears. she cannot credibly do that because she lied. >> so a lot of people think secretary nielsen was the face of this policy even though enacted by attorney general sessions. corey lewandowski, former trump campaign manager went on fox last night, and, well, here's what he initially said when a democratic activist started telling a story about a young girl with down syndrome separated from her mother at the border. >> i read today about a 10-year-old girl with down syndrome, who was taken from her mother and put in a cage. >> wawa. >> did you say wawa to a 10-year-old with down syndrome? how dare you! how dare you!
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>> when you -- >> how absolutely dare you, sir! >> here's corey lewandowski responding today when asked if he thought he should apologize. >> do you feel that you owe an apology of any sort? >> an apology? i owe an apology to the children whose parents are putting them in a position that is forcing them to be separated. >> i want to believe that vice president mike pence is still a good man with a good heart. he has corey lewandowski working for his political action committee. you should not employ a person in any capacity that reflects -- projects such heartslessness and then doubles down on it. and i can understand the administration's frustrations that this crisis was not created on their watch. but there's a reason why president obama didn't get the hate and blame that this administration is. because they don't say things like that. they don't project heartlessness. they actually take the time and
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care to figure out what's going on rather than just firing off some tweets and bumbling around the white house. and so they own this. >> simone? wamp wamp? >> it was extremely inappropriate. and like i don't think corey lewandowski understood he had a window to make this right and that window is now closed. and so for everyone that continues to have corey lewandowski on their payroll, to invite him in to -- to hire him to work with him, to be clients of his, all of these folks, in my opinion, are saying they endorse the policies and views of corey lewandowski and think this is okay. >> so we did some research as to this story about this girl, and it's a true story. i first read about it in the "wall street journal." her mother was being smuggled across the border, and by a u.s. citizen, and the mother is being held not for breaking the law by crossing the border, but as a witness in the case. and for that reason, she was separated from her daughter, who has down syndrome.
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corey says he was mocking the democratic activist who was playing politics with children. >> it doesn't matter. i mean, look, the story itself does illustrate how complicated this issue is. i think there are a fair number of democrats who would like to believe this is kind of one decision in the wrong direction as soon as you reverse it, everything is going to be fine. it is extremely complicated. >> absolutely. >> it's going to take a long time to try to unwind and get the right policy which, by the way, we haven't had in 20 years. we haven't had the right policy. as to lewandowski, look, i think part of the problem the administration has had with this and many other issues is they've got folks that speak with sort of a dispassionate analysis of real human issues that don't seem to identify with what has to be the desperation of people coming to the border in the first place, right? if you can't figure out in your head how desperate an individual has to be to put their child, knowing that they're likely to be separated with them into that border facility, you can't figure out why that's not a law and order issue, you ought to have somebody else speak about
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it. >> but here's the flaw and it's not exclusive to corey lewandowski, you have a number of public messengers who want to make the president look good. you have people like laura ingram on fox saying well, it's like a summer camp. ann coulter saying these are child actors. you have very nice "fox & friends" hosts saying, well, it's not like nazi germany, they're not being gassed. these people are putting in a higher priority and trying to cover for the president than search for humanity in their own heart. >> i think on the other side of that, you saw congressional republicans and in particular i thought right away senate republicans come to -- >> thank god -- >> -- to a quick consensus something needed to be done and willing to pass legislation on it. so i don't think this is sort of a monolithic critique. >> but to that, there was a sign on the table, and it took days for the senate republican caucus to say something of that matter. >> i think that actually illustrates that feinstein bill has got a tremendous flaw that would prohibit the enforcement
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of violent criminals. >> and we'll talk about that. we're keeping you guys around. stick around. i just have to take another quick break. the government is calling them, quote, tender age facilities, detention centers for young children under the age of 10. does softening thee ke it any better? stay with us. at's the value of ? what's critical thinking like? a basketball costs $14. what's team spirit worth? (cheers) what's it worth to talk to your mom? what's the value of a walk in the woods? the value of capital is to create, not just wealth, but things that matter. morgan stanley
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this is a story about mail and packages. and it's also a story about people. people who rely on us every day to deliver their dreams they're handing us more than mail they're handing us their business and while we make more e-commerce deliveries to homes than anyone else in the country, we never forget... that your business is our business the united states postal service. priority: you ♪ anyone can get you ready, holiday inn express gets you the readiest. because ready gives a pep talk. showtime! but the readiest gives a pep rally. i cleared my inbox! holiday inn express, be the readiest. . president trump's new executive order to keep families detained together at the border opens a whole different pandora's box of problems. among the outstanding questions, what happens to the more than
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2,300 children already separated from their parents sitting in detention centers and shelters now. cnn's polo sandoval reports. >> reporter: this is a detention facility for the youngest immigrant children being held against their will in a u.s. city. it's a nondescript former private home in a tiny texas town of combs, 20 miles from the border. from outside these black strollers are the only signs of some 60 children ranging in age from infants to 10 years old housed inside. some may have been forcibly separated from their parents after crossing into the country illegally. the u.s. government calls it a tender age facility. one of at least three in texas alone. today the ceo of southwest key, the company that operates the center and others offered his own description. >> i want to make it very, very clear that this is not a detention center. we have a license by the state of texas to run a child care facility. and what we run is a child care facility. >> reporter: this facility in combs is right in the middle of the south texas working class
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neighborhood. speaking of some want neighboof neighbors, they often hear soccer balls over the big white wall, but we don't know what happens here. you see, our cameras haven't been given any access. the government has only given this video and photos showing families behind chained link cages resting on green sleeping pads and wrapped in mylar blankets. none of the government handout materials show girls. >> we have only seen boys. >> i will look into that. >> reporter: cnn spoke to texas congressman, fill amoan villa, who got a rare glimpse inside one of the centers. >> the idea that you would walk into a facility like this one and see children at the age of 8 months or 1 year who have been taken from their parents and the idea that it's the american government in the year 2018 holding them hostage for whatever ambitions the president may have, it's just abhorrent. >> reporter: now as president
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trump scienigns an executive or to keep families together, what happens next for families torn apart? this texas attorney represents parents separated. >> all they do is cry, because no one has contact with their children. >> reporter: heartbroken parents charged into the president's zero tolerance policy are making up more of garcia's case load these days. >> before they would be placed in family facilities, where you would have the mothers or the fathers with the children. now as far as i know, those facilities don't exist. so where are you going to reunite them? it's going to be anywhere from a month to two months, minimum, for them to go through a process. >> before they are able to hold their child again. >> yes, yeah. >> reporter: will we see more of these family housing units? that's certainly the question. meanwhile, for the staff at some of these facilities, we're told they are still waiting on their marching orders this afternoon. jake, they are still trying to see how this executive order will be implemented, and how soon could these roughly 2,300 recently separated children be
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by their parents' side again. >> all right, paulo sandoval, thank you so much. new focus on the company, a charity caring for these children. why the ceo's seven-figure salary is now drawing attention. stay with us. it's all about the double ii's with xiidra... ...the only eye drop... ...approved for the signs... ...and symptoms of dry eye. because dry eye can mean... ...more than... ...just dryness. xiidra may provide lasting relief... ...starting in two weeks. one drop in each eye, twice a day. don't use if you are allergic to xiidra. common side effects include eye irritation, discomfort or blurred vision when applied to the eye, and unusual taste sensation. don't touch container tip to your eye... ...or any surface. after using xiidra, wait 15 minutes... ...before reinserting contacts. chat with your eye doctor... ...about xiidra.
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i was very surprised at the size of this crowd. woman: my question is, why hasn't congress started impeachment proceedings given what we know, and they probably know much more. i think that if you speak to congress-people privately, democrats and republicans acknowledge that this is a reckless, dangerous, and lawless president. for them, political safety is what is driving them to sweep it under the rug. if we don't stand up for the basic values of america, if we normalize this behavior, he will continue, and he will push it every single time he gets away with it. i mean, that's sort of the reaction to any bully. it tends to isolate you, and when you meet with other people and listen, you get that sense that you're not the only one who feels that way. well, i'm just grateful that everybody... that i'm not the only one that feels that trump needs to be impeached.
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internationally today, the ceo who runs 26 immigrant shelters across the country makes nearly $1.5 million a
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year. it's not just the huge salary that the head of southwest key makes. southwest key is a nonprofit organization, and as cnn's drew griffin reports, this man is among the highest-paid charity ceos rated by charity watch in the entire country. >> reporter: he calls himself el presidente. his staff once played "hail to the chief" when he arrived at one facility. it may be all tongue in cheek humor, but there is nothing funny about how much juan sanchez is being paid to run southwest key, a nonprofit housing half of all the migrant children separated from their families. according to the latest tax filings in 2017, sanchez's southwest key nonprofit paid him $1.47 million. doubling the $770,000 he made the year before. is that a lot, even for a nonprofit of his size? apparently yes. >> the head of the american red cross receives a $600,000
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salary. it's a multibillion dollar charity. they control half of our blood supply, lead disaster provider. you've got this charity, the budget is like a tenth of its size, not nearly the size of the responsibilities. so it does appear high. >> reporter: cnn analyzed nonprofits as large as southwest key and operating under similar classification, and found sanchez paid among the very top. he operates 83 shelters or schools or detention centers across the country. the federal government contracts in the last ten years add up to $1.5 billion. by many accounts, southwest key does provide safe housing to unaccompanied minors. though they have been cited in the past for some violations. in an interview with austin's klru-tv, sanchez said the new trump policy left him inundated with children. >> we never imagined we would have these many kids. we never imagined we would see the kind of policies that we're
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seeing now. >> reporter: sanchez's defense of his high salary, the early years were a struggle. >> when we started, we started with nothing. very low salaries. no health insurance. no 401(k)s, nothing. over time, our board had gotten to a point where they said we are now in a position where we can pay you a decent salary. >> reporter: that history doesn't quite match with the group's own tax filings. cnn went back to 1997, where sanchez was paid nearly $130,000. nearly every year since, except for two gap years, showing no income. his salary has increased. that doesn't even include his wife, listed as the vice president, who in the latest filings made an additional $262,000. mark owen, who for ten years ran the irs department on nonprofits, says compensation should be adequate to what owen could make in the private sector performing similar work. he sees nothing comparable.
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>> the salary is extraordinarily high for a charity. even a large charity. it's a complex organization with a lot of for-profit and tax-exempt subsidiaries and the president is making a lot of money. >> reporter: jake, southwest key spokesperson just got back to us, saying sanchez's salary is based on their revenue, sending cnn a statement saying the compensation of dr. sanchez, when compared to ceos of similarly-sized nonprofits is within a reasonable range. the increase in the salary of dr. sanchez reflects the increase in southwest key's growth. approximately 414% increase over a period. it goes on to say a board approves his salary and an annual analysis is done to compare sanchez's salary to the ceos of other nonprofits. that statement and the information they sent, jake, is precisely proving the point that we make in our story. he is one of the highest-paid ceos of his size. >> top five. drew griffin, thank you so much. what's the one thing all of
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want to take a moment to quickly clarify something i said at the top over a graphic that we showed on our air for our new cnn poll. to be clear, this poll showing 55% democrat, 45% republican, this shows the choice force enthusiastic voters, who did they want to vote. how did they want to vote,
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enthusiastic voters. of enthusiastic voters, 55% want to vote democrat, 45% republican. anyway, john lewis called the president's comment that democrats want migrants to, quote, infest our country, he called that comment racist. >> shameful. racist. not in keeping with the dreams and the hopes of american people. >> is it dangerous? >> it is forever dangerous. >> let's bring back my panel, lewis is calling this racist, amanda. do you want to handle that one? saying that undocumented immigrants want to infest the country. >> yeah, i think it's a racist statement. and i think donald trump says a lot of racist things. and i honestly -- i don't know if it's because he actually is a racist in his heart or if he wants to inflame those tensions for political benefit. both are terrible. and what's even worse is that after he is told these things are racist, he never clarifies.
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he never pivots. he never budgets. so the take-away is whether he means it or not, he's promoting racism. >> this is a talking point that -- he's literally parroting a talking point of the white nationalist movement, immigrant people invading countries, that is a talking point from the white nationalist movement. >> so critics of president trump point to a lot of his biggest flash points, controversies, as having a through line. his handling of the hurricane maria aftermath, calling protesters who march in charlottesville very fine people. the muslim ban, calling some african nations s-holes. contra critics would say the common theme is a lack of ability to see the humanity in people of color. >> i think we remember all of those most because they're areas where they don't divide along the critiques don't divide along partisan lines, right? the things that republicans least comfortable with and have spoken out with and therefore
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make the biggest deal in retrospect. >> thanks for being here. rely appreciate it. that's it for "the lead." i turn you over to wolf blitzer. he's in "the situation room." thank you for watching. happening now, breaking news. caving to pressure. president trump does what he earlier insisted only congress could do, ordering a stop to separating undocumented families at the border. the major policy flip coming as everyone from the pope to the president's own family pleaded for change. detaining babies. new details emerging about facilities now housing young children taken from their parents, including a converted hospital run by a contracted company. why were cnn's cameras turned awere from the property? shy of the votes. as president trump punts to congress on immigration, republicans aren't even sure they have enough support to pass their own