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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  July 5, 2018 5:00pm-6:00pm PDT

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you can enjoy even more of these priceless moments in cnn's brand new series, we're taking you through the 2000s, you lived it. why not live it again. starts sunday night at 9:00 p.m. thanks for joining me. john berman in for anderson cooper tonight. acc 360 starts right now. when it comes to scandal. scott pruitt was a walking talking government salaried super fund site. now, he's just walking. john berman in for anderson. until he resigned late today, epa scott pruitt was at the certainty of 14 ethically legal investigations, not counting a hotel fetish and security detail drive him around to find a special kind of skin lotion. you know you're working it when lotion gate is not one of your top on your list and not including the luxury mattress he
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tried to wrangle from president trump's hotel in washington, having made his bed, was he ever forced to sleep in it? why does he still have a job and laura ingraham, for goodness sake, was demanding his head. presumably she got it, presumab presumably well moisturized. he stepped down without talking about any of it. he said in his words, poor me. it is extremely difficult for me to cease serving you in this role because i count it a blessing to be serving you in any capacity but also because of the transformative work that is occurring. however, the unrelenting attacks on me personally and my family are unprecedented and all have taken a toll on all of us.
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maybe the slowly draining swamp, a fiddler is tuning up the world's smallest violin and playing the world's saddest song. later today on air force one, president trump praised pruitt for doing an outstanding job and said it was his own decision to leave. he called him a terrific job. he will be replaced by his deputy, andrew wheeler. joining us now the man who uncovered the most recent pruitt problem, work from the inspector general, just hours later, pruitt resigned. >> pruitt and the president insisting this is a resignation and not firing but it has become too much for even scott pruitt to remain. it may have been the last straw. an epa insider turned whistle-blower alleging scott pruitt and his inner circle were keeping a secret calendar, hiding meeting with industry
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insiders and others from the public, scrubbing federal records possibly in violation of the law. >> scrubbed? >> scrubbed, yes, sir. >> of the official epa administrator's schedule. >> absolutely. which happens quite a bit. >> reporter: the report details two dozen meteevents and meetin with insiders and others the secret calendar all done under pruitt's direction. this morning, two democratic congressman demanhandleded a federal investigation of that report. within hours, pruitt resigned. in his resignation letter pruitt never mentioned any of the scandals he was associated with only this, the unrelenting attacks on me personally and my family are unprecedented and have taken ain' sizable toll on all of us. what's unprecedented, the sheer allegations against scott pruitt. >> it's mind-boggling the long
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list of potential allegations are. >> reporter: jeff pruitt suggested ousting jeff sessions so he would be appointed attorney general and leasing a d.c. condo below costs and spending tens of thousands of dollars on office furniture, sound proof phone booth and tax dollars on weekend trips home and pay raises to political aides. using staff to run errands, trying to get his wife a six figure job and a restaurant franchise. his former deputy chief of staff said scott pruitt was warned several times to stop but excused. >> the phone booth was one thing. the first class flights, delta flights, living in the lobbyist's house, we all knew about this and we expressed concerns. we expressed issues with it. going home every weekend, having the taxpayers pay for his trips back home to oklahoma, we expressed this, including ryan
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jackson. it just got overruled by administrator pruitt. >> reporter: in just the past few weeks even republicans began questioning pruitt's judgment. >> some are allegations and some are facts. he is acting like a moron and he needs to stop it. >> reporter: in the end, pruitt relied on his personal almost divine-like connection to donald trump as revealed in his letter of resignation. i believe you are serving as president today because of god's providence, pruitt wrote to trump. i believe that same providence brought me into your service. that service, under the weight of 14 federal probes, came to an end today. drew griffin joins us along with maggie abram who has done a ton of reporting on pruitt for the "new york times." now that he has resigned, do the allegations, 14 of them go away? does he face disciplinary action? >> some will fall because of the
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politics involved, people in congress want to walk away from them. we're hearing the epa's inspector general is going ahead with those probes he's been asked to look at through congress. we'll see what the oversight committees do. obviously, the plan for scott pruitt is just go away. >> maggie, there was quote no final straw and the decision was up to pruitt. is that what your sources are telling you in the white house? >> the decision was not up to pruitt. there was no specific final straw per se. what tipped the balance, two things, the embarrassment surrounding kaitlyn collins story about how it was many months ago this had happened, pruitt had pitched himself as jeff sessions replacement again, appealing to trump's vanity and basically in a mold of sicnk cofancy you could see in that resignation letter. and scrubbing up from the meetings.
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that tipped the balance. a source from the administration officials said that focused people's minds because that brought it to a different level. this all did begin according to two of my sources, that report about him attempting to buy a mattress from the trump hotel. that brought it into a different area. >> it was a mattress. >> the best part of that is you will never say that to me on set again. it was the mattress that was the first one. i think it was a snowball effect. trump is willing to put up with a lot of things and generally likes people who praise him but doesn't like people who get bad press. >> trump pushed him out, the president's decision? >> this was more the staff around the president and the president was brought along. the president resisted it because he likes him personally and they have a good chemistry and felt he was getting stuff done. don't forget trump's instinctive response when someone is getting attacked, hunker down and say,
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defend defend, it must be wrong. the balance became so overwhelming. when you get into an issue that involved potential illegality, that was a problem. >> people within the epa and whistle-blower, what's the reaction inside this agency? >> they're happy to see pruitt go because of the way he was running this office. very much not agreeable to meet any scientists and read backup and follow procedures in place from other epa administrators making big decisions. they are happy at least pruitt is gone. they're not quite sure about andrew wheeler, although andrew wheeler is many things, a d.c. professional, who knows how operations run. i think they are holding out hope at least wheeler will look at science when he is making some of these decisions that the epa is involved with. >> talk to me about andrew wheeler a second. what do we know about him? >> andrew wheeler started at the epa 25 some years ago. then, he went to capitol hill,
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where he worked for senator inhofe. senator inhofe of oklahoma is one of the climate change skeptics. he worked there, left, went to k-street and followed that golden path that leads to lobbying job, lobbied for big coal, energy companies and lobbied the energy industry, epa and department of interior. the very people now he is going to regulate as we pointed out in some of our reporting, were paying him a year or so ago. that should be an interesting dynamic. andrew wheeler did have to pledge he wouldn't be involved in any decisions involving his former clients. we have that to deal with. >> likely very little change in policy. we know people around the president think he responds to praise, gratuitous praise but pruitt's resignation letter is a whole new level.
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i believe you are serving as president today because of god's providence. that takes it to a new level. >> it does take it to a new level and certain level of divinity and faith and destiny. it's very hard not to read that letter and come away from the belief scott pruitt thought she was serving a man opposed to a country and man opposed to an administration. we are a nation of laws, not men, as written repeatedly. it is striking to hear him pledge this to the president again and again. especially when it doesn't really matter now, it only matters in terms of how the president was going to deal with pruitt, you saw what hoe said to reporters from air force one was pretty glowing. it could have been a lot worse and rougher. he gave him and easy shove out the door. >> the president was just speaking in montana at a rally there talking about senator elizabeth warren he often refers to as pocohantas. there's more to it in this case. i want you to listen. >> pocohantas, they always want
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me to apologize for saying it. let's say i'm debating pocohantas, i promise you i will do this. you know those kits they sell on television for $2, learn your heritage. we will take that little kit and say, but we have to do it gently, we're in the me too generation, so we have to be very careful. we will very gently take that kit and we will slowly toss it, hoping it doesn't hit her and injure her arm. >> the pocohantas thing is one thing, however, he seemed to make a me too joke at that rally, several aspects and remember what it's about, women talking about their own stories of sexual harassment in their lives. this comes the same day he announced bill shine formerly of fox news, who left under a cloud of scandal. >> no allegations against him personally, he allowed a culture
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of hostility toward women and looks the other way and have been made over and over again, it is dismissive at best about the "me too" movement. senator warren's folks i imagine are happy because it shows how afraid he is of her and facing her. one of the biggest threats for the republican party in this midterm is energy and enthusiasm on women voters. this is an interesting tact to take if you're a president whose party is looking at a pretty rough landscape for the fall. >> i haven't seen him make this type of comment. interesting to see if he does it tomorrow. thank you very much. one final note, in washington d.c., one word reaction to his departure, that one word, good. reuniting children with their families and how much progress has been made and the answer that he gives you will
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shock you with when it's not breaking your heart. the flood zone in thailand and the effort to save a soccer coach and the boys and you can see underground the kind of conditions they face. example back pain can' now introducing aleve back and muscle pain. only aleve targets tough pain for up to 12 hours with just one pill. aleve back & muscle. all day strong. all day long. this endangered species is getting help from some unexpected friends. these zebra and antelope. they're wearing iot sensors, connected to the ibm cloud. when poachers enter the area, the animals run for it. which alerts rangers, who can track their motions and help stop them before any harm is done. it's a smart way to help increase the rhino population.
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"keeping them honest" tonight, the administration that tore thousands of children from their families today went public today but did not come clean. the children detained since the zero tolerance border policy took effect. when he stopped talking they were still in the dark when they will be reunified and how they will be reunified and how many kids are still in custody. the reason cannot be simple. we're all in the dark because the administration having created the problem in the first place does not seem to be solving it with all due speed or some due speed, concealing one key measure of that lack of progress. today, the secretary could not confirm the number of children that have been separated from their parents during zero tolerance. it's odd because they were giving it out two weeks ago when the president said this. >> we will have a lot of happy
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people. >> he's signing that executive order undoing the policy he signed to stop it. he didn't have to sign anything. there were a specific number of children taken by their families by the government. a week later they stopped breaking out that figure, about 11,000, most of whom arrived here unaccompanied. today, secretary azhar made the claim that the number of children who may av been separated from their parents under zero tolerance or other reasons was lower than 3,000, about 100 are younger than 5 years old. the best they can do is lower than 3,000. that's the best they can do. this isn't some rounding error. these are children. children separated from their parents by the u.s. government. that government did not even have the competence or decency to count. they are under towards reunite
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them by tuesday under 5 and all kids by the 26th. we can't monitor the progress because we don't have a baseline number. again, the issue here is the government will not tell us exactly how many kids they have separated from their parents. secretary azhar did give the number of family reunifications taken place so far. that number is stunning. is there a number for how many children and parents have been reunited? >> no, john, there's not. this call today with hhs is clearly their attempt to try to give more information. it brought us very little clarity to the questions we've been asking on a daily basis quite some time now and far short of the full accounting going on with these kids, how many are still separated, how many have been reunified. the numbers they were able to give today are still incomplete. the new numbers we learned today according to hhs, there are
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currently under 3,000 children in total still in custody, who have been separated from their parents. that includes 100 children under the age of 5. what's notable here, this is not a precise tally. they will not give us more exact figures than that very broad under 3,000 metric. here's secretary azhar today. >> i want to be really clear. a couple of you have said the word 3,000. i want to be clear it is under 3,000. i want to give you an outer bound, under 3,000. that is the maximum set. it will not be 3,000, it will not be close to 3,000. it will be under 3,000. >> reporter: one other detail did come from this call, they said zero have been reunited with their familiesy that's significant and all this back and forth about the numbers is important because the last figure we had last tuesday, nine
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days ago, hhs then said 2,047 children were in custody who had been separated. this new total seems potentially much higher than that. the hhs secretary says, that's because the courts order required officials to go back further in time to find thousands of cases of separated children. this number potentially includes children separated before that policy started by the administration back in may. again, all of this highlights without the full numbers we don't yet still have the full scope of what progress is being made, if any, about reuniting these kids with their parents. >> zero reunification last week and the only number they give us, less than 3,000. this is not a rounding error, we're talking about children here. that's the best they can do. does it seem likely the administration will reach the court-ordered deadline for
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reuniting families? >> the secretary said they will comply with the deadline but regarding how this call went pretty hard to see how they reach that. remember, these court deadlines are very specific, by tomorrowy the deadline for parents who made some sort of telephone contact with their separated kids by tuesday of next week, the deadline for kids under 5 years old to be reunified. we know that means 100 kids currently and by july 26th, all parents need to be reunited with their children. >> thank you. former ethics czar under president obama and steve cortez. i do not understand this. the best they can do now is tell us there are somewhere fewer than 3,000 children in custody separated from their parents by the u.s. government. if the government is going to
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separate them, should they not have the decency or competencesy to at least count. >> i agree with your premise the government separated them. some of whom were parents and some were not. >> did the parents cross the border with their children, this administration put into place a policy which caused their separation. they were separated. >> no, they didn't. that's incorrect, john. >> if i read this -- >> they were separated -- because of the actions of these adults. >> yes, i can order. >> once they were over the border, did their parents throw them away separating them? no. >> they did by their actions, john. if i leave this studio. >> i don't want to go down this road. >> are you going to give a lecture or -- >> i want to -- >> are you going to give a lecture. >> are you okay with the fact the administration didn't count, these are kids.
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are you okay with them not counting? >> the counting should be accurate. if i leave this studio tonight and i take my children with me and break and enter into somebody's home, is the cop who arrests me separating me from my children or am i doing it? i'm the one responsible for separating me from my children. that's what happens to an american citizen. why would it be different for a guatemalan or american? >> the president signed an executive order rescinding the policy separating the children from their parents. at this point, that's not even in dispute. what i am asking you is how the government after that executive order hasn't been able to get its act together to get a count for how many kids it separated. >> you have to ask hhs. i don't know the answers to that. >> does it bother you a little? a lot? at all? >> john, it bothers me immensely these children are suffering.
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i have nothing but empathy to them. the united states government didn't do this to them, donald trump didn't do this to them. their parents or whoever they were with did this to them, a reprehensible act they decided in their own will, own eventual ligs to cross a sovereign border with children in tow. own volition to cross. the health & human services secretary gives us a number under 3,000. does it seem they have a policy at this point? there have been zero reunifications in the last week. does it look like there is a policy to get them back together. >> no, john, tragically, this administration -- whatever decision the parents made i have great empathy for them. donald trump and his administrations are the ones governed by the constitution.
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they violated the due process cause of the constitution, carrying these children out of the parents' arms. it has been held by the supreme court to apply to aliens on united states land. what's so terrible, the reason we're in this mess today and the reason secretary azar couldn't even give you an exact number, because they tore those children away without ever thinking how they might reunify them with their parents. that is a shocking violation of the constitution, a violation of humanity. steve doesn't want to talk about donald trump's responsibility for this. it's massive, appalling and a failure of our government. i'm ashamed of the president and his administration. >> steve. >> look, getting control of our border is not xenaphobic, not racist, not small-minded, it's sensible. a lawless border breeds all this kind of criminality.
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while i think the left appears and wants to appear to be merciful here, the opposite is actually true. what's encouraged by lawlessness of the border is child trafficking and sexual exploitation. >> you're creating a false choice, steve, i think, between lawlessness at the border and a decision to separate children from their parents. >> but i'm not. i'm not, john. if you say if you come in with a child, we won't separate you, you're effectively making kids admission tickets. as long as you have children we will do catch and release. >> the constitution -- >> norm, i did think the administration told me it wasn't a deterrent, steve seems to be saying the original policy was a deterrent. norm. >> well -- >> i think it was, and i frankly disagree with the executive order of the president. >> norm -- >> these children -- >> the things steve doesn't want
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to say is that the administration has been all over the map. it is a deterrent, it is a deterrent, we're doing it intentionally, it was not on purpose. we're sorry, we mean it. why? because they're violating the united states constitution. this is not an isolated incident. there has been an amount of lawlessness and constitutional violation by this administration we've never seen. this is some of the most painful because it involves children. steve, just say it. the president violated the due process clause of the constitution, then i'll listen to your other arguments. admit our constitution was violated by this cruel act. >> clearly, people who come here do have due process, i agree, even if they're here legally. >> we have to go. steve, you have to wrap up. >> all right. what is also clear this is american people support, and by the way, including hispanics, my community, hispanics
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overwhelmingly in polling support detaining families either in part or separation but do not support separation -- sorry, catch and release -- because that leads to lawlessness at the border. >> the policy is one thing. i still do not understand how they did not or cannot count how many kids are separated. that needs to be explained by the u.s. government. i appreciate you being here. thank you. president trump says he will announce his picks to replace justice kennedy. and he shrugs off suggestions kim jong-un may have no intention of denuclear rising. paying too much for insurance you don't even understand?
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president trump just wrapped up a political rally in montana. on the flight there, the president held a wide ranging talk with reporters. and among the topics, his pick for the supreme court, down to two or three people, all of whom he says are outstanding. here is randi kaye with a look at that list, the names we now know. >> they are outstanding people, really incredible people in so many different ways, economical academically. >> reporter: on the short list, brett kavanaugh, on the court of appeals since 2006 and has the backing of breitbart and ann coulter. the 53-year-old kavanaugh -- he
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has been part of the establishment too long. he helped investigate bill clinton with starr, and then served as a close aide to president george w. bush. on healthcare and abortion, cavanaugh has been criticized being out of step with the majority of americans. last year, he sided with the trump administration to block an abortion for a pregnant immigrant teenager noting the government's permissible interests in favoring fetal life. judge raymond kethledge is 51 and the only evangelical christian of president trump's top nominees and once clerked for justice anthony kennedy. the university of michigan university law school graduate has co-written a book on leadership called "lead yourself first" and his co-workers describe him as humble, down-to-earth. he is a true conservative once
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upholding a mandatory minimum sentence for a man who pled guilty to drug charges even though congress reduced the mandatory minimum by the time the man was sentenced. >> justice kennedy is 80. this could be a sea change. >> reporter: amy coney barrett, the only female considering is a notre dame law professor. she is 46 and has seven children. she was recently appointed to the uggs court of appeals in chicago and clerked for u.s. supreme court justice antonin scalia. membership in a group called people of praise, a christian organization the article said has life-long loyalty oaths and requires submission of advisors of the same gender and believes in prophesy. in 2006, barrett told notre dame graduates that your legal career is but a means to an end and that end is building the kingdom of god. >> when you read your speeches, the conclusion one draws is that
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the dogma lives loudly within you. and that's of concern. >> reporter: despite barrett's comment that she believes roe v. wade would not be overturned. >> i would have no interest in as a court of appeals judge, challenging that precedent. >> reporter: new york chuck schumer criticized barrett on twitter calling her an activist judge who will be the deciding vote to overturn roe v. wade. three judges, three very different backgrounds, the nomination process awaits. during that session with reporters on board air force one president trump also touched on north korea and says he has a quote very good feeling about north korean leader kim jong-un as intelligence leaks suggest they may not be engaging in any
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source of denuclearization. i spoke to a reporter about mike pompeo traveling for another round of talks with the north koreans. >> you wrote the republican party used to be a conservative party with a white national list fringe, now a conservative party with a conservative white nationalist fringe. can you explain that? >> donald trump has transformed the republican party. that's another part of my conversation with max in paris. you will hear more about that in a little bit. i believe we hear part of the conversation we talk about north korea. we will take a quick break and be right back. think you should bee don't rushed into booking one. that's why we created expedia's add-on advantage. now after booking your flight, you unlock discounts on select hotels right until the day you leave. ♪ add-on advantage. discounted hotel rates when you add on to your trip.
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we had technical difficulties getting to max about north korea. i believe we sorted out the trouble, our apologies. take a look. let me ask you about philosopfo policy you write a lot about. the president said, look, they haven't launched a missile since the summit. he's right, they haven't launched a missile since the summit. is that the right barometer here, they haven't conducted missile tests? >> no, of course not. donald trump went into the
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summit promising he would complete verifiable denuclearization. instead of disarming he is actually arming as our own intelligence agencies have shown. instead of holding kim jong-un to account, donald trump engages in the most disgusting praise of this evil vile dictator saying he is smart, has a great personality and at the same time trashing our alleys. you can imagine -- allies. you can madge what europe would do to hillary clinton, they will praise president trump no matter what he does including north korea. not the reason he doesn't have to test missiles because he doesn't have to. he has been testing them the last several months and doesn't have to test the missile tests anymore and doesn't have to conclude the missile tests
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anymore because he has them. >> the end of the day, what the president said about singapore was the first step in a long process of total nuclearization of the korean peninsula. the facts are there have not been any more testing. whether he wants to or needs to, he could still show his might and be aggressive against the united states like he was before. before the summit, everyone was criticizing president trump with his tough talk of kim jong-un, like rocket man and they will criticize like washington, d.c. says, more diplomatic, i don't care who it had been. if it had been president george walker bush, whom i worked for for four years or senators john mccain i worked for and campaigned for, to set the record straight i have been a republican and supported our
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nominee since i have been able to vote, if they had kept american safe by having this summit, if they would do the things donald trump has done i would have praised them. to your point, if it had been barack obama, the former president or secretary clinton done the things president trump has done on an international scale she would have been deserving of praise and not the type of criticism folks like you and others give him not giving him the credit he deserves. >> max, out of time. very quickly, max. >> give me a break. you and all these other donald trump criticized president obama for the iran nuclear deal being the worst deal in history and it is about a million times stronger than what trump has achieved with north korea so far. >> much more on our conversation with max in paris. we take you across the globe to an international rescue operation unlike anything we have ever seen. new complications hampering the
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effort to free those boys and the soccer coach trapped in a cave. just ahead.
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in thailand almost two weeks since the soccer team became trapped inside that flooded cave, no word how or when rescue can get them out and arriving with cables to set up communication with the kids below. forecasts of monsoon rains are complicating the mission and too dangerous to move the boys just yet and some reportedly too weak to attempt the dangerous journey to freedom. give us a sense of the latest. >> reporter: what we heard overnight was from the government, the governor, actually, of the province here in northern thailand, he came out and said, look, in terms of
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the rescue operation, what they're trying to do is have the kids walk out. we talked about them swimming out. the goal here, a goal, not sure if it can happen, lower the water levels enough in the cave to pump out millions of gallons of water to have them walk out swimming or using scuba right now, the weather is holding. it's not raining, but that is going to change. what you're seeing here is a very small window of opportunity where authorities are going to have to make the decision, can they get the water levels down low enough for the boys to walk out, and if they can't, are they going to have them swim out? that would be an incredibly risky proposition. >> where are things with the communications lines they've been trying to set up so the boys can speak with their families? >> reporter: as far as we can tell -- and we've been here all night long -- we've not had any confirmation that the communication lines have been set up. we do know the boys are in relatively good health, yes, some are weak, but we're told
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they're in good spirits. they were asking about the world cup according to some reports. but those communication lines haven't been set up quite yet. there's also the morale. they want to talk to their parents. but the other thing is it's an easier way for authorities to get in touch with not only the kids but the personnel in the caves with those kids. it takes a long time to go back and forth to where the kids are and the entrance to the cave. not only does it help with morale, but it also helps rescuers keep an eye in a realtime sort of way in terms of what's going on down there. >> matt, i do understand there is at least some concern about the physical health of at least one or two of the children, including malnutrition? >> reporter: yeah. malnutrition is a concern. i mean you have to figure they were in there for a long time before rescuers were able to give them that kind of food and nutrition that they really needed. but they do have those supplies now. the big concern, though, is how long they're going to be able to stay in there because the forecast -- yes, it's not raining right now, but the
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forecast is going to change. this is july in thailand, and this is the rainy season. so it is going to start raining. those water levels will start rising. so when we talk about that window of opportunity, this is it. this is when the decisions have to be made because when it starts raining, as we saw when they first got trapped in the beginning, john, those waters can rise extremely quickly. so now is the time to make a decision. >> some of those rains in the forecast for as soon as monday. that's why they're watching so carefully. matt rivers, great to have you on the ground for us. we'll check back in next hour. back in the united states, there are divers who train over and over for rescues like this. an up close look at some extreme dangers with gary tuchman in a cave in utah. >> i walk in 40 degree water with two of the preeminent cave divers in the united states. sergeant wendell knope and richard lamb. we're in northern utah's logan can kbron and a cave system
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similar to the cave in thailand where the young boys and coach are trapped. it's similar in other ways too. >> this cave is flooded with snowmelt water. the cave in thailand with flooded with monsoon water. >> reporter: both men begin their scuba voyage into the cave with our cameras to give us a look at the dangers and show us why you absolutely never do anything like this without cave diving certification. just getting into this nearly half-mile-long cave system requires squeezing through a narrow tunnel, and this is not the narrowest tunnel they will face in waters that go as deep as 90 feet. are you scared sometimes when you go in a cave like this? >> i have at times been afraid when something unexpected happens. >> reporter: something unexpected includes equipment failure, changes in water depth, and falling rocks and boulders that could leave you trapped.
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>> my greatest fear is running out of air before i make it out the cave. the truth is i've been stuck in this cave. >> reporter: stuck for about six minutes, richard lamb says. it crossed his mind that he was in serious trouble. he was rescued by sergeant nope. to become cave diver certified, one of the requirements is to be at least 18 years old due to the difficulty and skill needed, which raises yet another concern for those boys in thailand, some as young as 11: and several who can't swim. >> in my perception, it's a last reso resort, but it is a viable means of providing them an escape route. >> if it's the only resort. >> if it's the only resort. >> officials are pumping water out of the cave around the clock, a much better option says this master diver. >> i believe if the rain were to subside enough that the pumps could draw enough water out of
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the cave. that would be an optimal scenario. >> reporter: this frigid, watery cave is so inherently dangerous, that we've been told that more people have walked on the moon than have navigated through this. our two experts tell us in addition to themselves, they know of only five other people who have gone through here. the circumstances for the boys and their soccer coach in thailand remain life-threatening and extremely challenging. but these utah experts have faith in their diving colleagues on the scene. >> when a human being is faced with seemingly insurmountable challenges, we seem to rise to that challenge. >> reporter: gary tuchman, cnn, logan canyon, utah. >> fascinating. a lot more ahead, including the latest details on the news of epa administrator scott pruitt's resignation.
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administrator. that's 14 by the way not counting the reports that he his security detail drive him around so he could buy a special kind of skin lotion, and it's not including the used luxury mattress he tried to wrangle from president trump's hotel in washington. on top of that, the scandals that is, not the mattress, he mentioned none of that in his resignation letter. and president trump called him a terrific. more from cnn's kaitlan collins. >> scott pruitt, administrator of the epa. >> reporter: embattled epa chief scott pruitt out tonight after months of mounting ethics scandals and questions about his behavior. president trump announcing on twitter, i have accepted the resignation of scott pruitt as the administrator of the environmental protection agency, praising pruitt's work rolling back obama era regulations at the epa, but making no mention of the dozens of ethics questions fac