Return to Transcripts main page

AT THIS HOUR WITH BERMAN AND MICHAELA

New Details of Prince's Final Days, Emergency Plane Landing; Judge Reinstates Tom Brady's 4-Game Suspension; Clinton Already Looking at V.P. Options; Can Kasich Help Cruz Stop Trump with Deal?; Obama Sending More Troops to Syria to Fight ISIS. Aired 11:30a-12p ET

Aired April 25, 2016 - 11:30   ET

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


[11:30:00] KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: What would you tell voters in Indiana? He said, I never said they shouldn't vote for me. They ought to vote for me.

BRENT BOZELL, CHAIRMAN, FORAMERICA & TED CRUZ PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN SURROGATE: Honestly, I don't know the answer to that. You're going to have to ask him. I honestly can't answer that question.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: But you do think that if this deal was to be as effective as it could be, he should tell potential Kasich voters in Indiana vote for Cruz, right?

BOZELL: I would assume so, yes.

BERMAN: All right.

BOLDUAN: Barry Bennett, Brent Bozell, always interesting, guys. Thank you so much.

Thanks, guys.

BOZELL: Thank you.

BERMAN: All right. Hillary Clinton apparently on the hunt for a running mate. A big new report says the process has already begun. See who is on that list. BOLDUAN: And new details today about the emergency landing of

Prince's private jet just days before his sudden death. We now know why the pilots forced the plane to the ground, why they needed to land so quickly. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[11:35:22] BERMAN: New details this morning about the final days in the life of Prince. The airport in Moline, Illinois, now confirms a private jet made an emergency landing early in the morning on April 16th because of an unresponsive male that was on board.

BOLDUAN: That was the same day that Prince was rushed to a hospital? Five days later, he was found dead. The cause is still a mystery, and so is the fate of his considerable estate. Meantime, his fans around the world are still coming to terms with the shock of his death.

Stephanie Elam is live outside Prince's home, Paisley Park, near Minneapolis.

So, Stephanie, what more are you learning this morning?

STEPHANIE ELAM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning to you, Kate and John. What's interesting about the fact that we know his plane came down for the emergency landing in Moline, Illinois, and we're now hearing the FAA side of it. CNN receiving the audio where they say it was an unresponsive male. We know that this was in the early hours of the morning on the 16th and then by 11:00 or so local time there in Illinois, the plane took off with that person onboard. So the airport not confirming that it was Prince, but it does match up with what we know. We know he came back here. He was seen out in public a couple days having a dance party and going to a jazz club, seen on his bike, and then Thursday morning he was discovered dead. And we believe had already passed away in the elevator at Paisley Park.

And while this investigation continues, they've already finished the autopsy, and he has been cremated. His remains were cremated and are being held in a private location, we understand. If you look behind me, you can see people are still coming out here now -- John and Kate?

BOLDUAN: Absolutely. Look at that. People still coming out today. They were all weekend. You can expect that will continue for some time as these questions linger.

Stephanie, thank you so very, very much.

Still ahead, Hillary Clinton, she's reportedly weighing her V.P. options. One scenario, an all-female ticket. How far along are the discussions? And why does the GOP ticket factor into her decisions? We'll tell you who she's considering.

BERMAN: And then dividing up states like Monopoly properties. Is that the only way to beat Donald Trump? Who, by the way, has hotels on his properties already? We'll ask one of John Kasich's big supporters in Congress what he thinks of this deal.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[11:41:58] BERMAN: All right. We have breaking news in the world of football. Big news about the really most biggest player in the NFL you could say. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals here in New York has reinstated the suspension on Tom Brady, the four-game suspension imposed by Commissioner Roger Goodell for the Deflategate allegations that were made a couple of years ago now. Initially, Tom Brady was suspended four games. Then a district judge, Richard Berman, came out and said, no, no, no, I'm going to throw out that suspension. Tom Brady played the entire season. But now the Second Circuit Court of Appeals has reinstated the four-game suspension.

BOLDUAN: Paul Callan is here, CNN legal analyst.

Paul, what does this mean? It's not over yet, that seems sure, but what does it mean?

PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: It's close to over because the Second Circuit is one of the major appeals courts on the federal side, and the only thing higher than that is the U.S. Supreme Court. And, frankly, I don't know if they're going to get involved in Patriots football.

I'm not surprised that this decision came down because the courts like to honor the mediation process. It's done privately, it gets these cases out of the court system. And, by the way, Brady and the Patriots agreed to mediation in advance.

BERMAN: Let me read you an excerpt from the ruling. "We do not believe this court made any rulings on what Tom Brady did, did not do, or knew or did not know." What they did rule on was whether the commissioner had the proper authority to impose a suspension. "We hold the commissioner properly examined his broad discretion under the collective bargaining agreement and as procedural rulings were properly grounded in that agreement and did not deprive Brady of fundamental fairness, accordingly we reverse the judgment of the district court remand with instructions to confirm the award."

CALLAN: Essentially, they're saying, you make an agreement you're going to mediate and you're going to allow, you know, a commissioner to make the decision when you take the job on, and he was within his discretion. So I'm not surprised. More often than not this is the way the court goes in a mediation situation, an arbitration situation.

BOLDUAN: It's going to be very interesting to hear what Roger Goodell has to say because this went to the appeals court because the NFL pushed it.

BERMAN: And it is the NFL draft this week, one of the highest-profile moments for Commissioner Goodell who ends up on stage.

BOLDUAN: This doesn't have any impact there at all.

BERMAN: No impact on the draft, except that Roger Goodell is front and center and has to take a lot of questions from the press.

BOLDUAN: Was there a penalty to the Patriots --

(CROSSTALK)

BERMAN: Yes. The Patriots lost their first-round pick this year. That was never going to be reinstated no matter what. They still don't have their first-round pick, now they don't have their franchise quarterback for first four games next year.

CALLAN: And that's big. And, frankly, I'd be very surprised if the U.S. Supreme Court is going to get involved.

BOLDUAN: This would be it then. All right.

BERMAN: Elena Kagan spent some time in Massachusetts. Maybe she's a Patriots fan. Here's hoping.

(LAUGHTER)

Paul Callan, thank you very much.

(CROSSTALK)

BOLDUAN: Unbiased analysis from John Berman.

Thank you so much, Paul.

Back to politics -- that's really amazing. But back to politics now. Hillary Clinton is close but not quite there yet when it comes to the Democratic nomination. However, it is not too soon to start looking for potential running mates.

[11:45:13] BERMAN: We're learning that there are many names apparently now on her list, a lot possibilities and scenarios, including perhaps picking a woman, which would be the first all-female presidential ticket in history.

Patrick Healy, of "The New York Times," has some fascinating reporting on this story. He really has the only reporting on this story.

Patrick, you broke this wide open over the weekend. Why don't you tell us first off what you found.

PATRICK HEALY, POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Sure, John. So they're at an early stage but they're compiling a list of about 15 to 20 names. In conversations with Hillary Clinton, with Bill Clinton, with John Podesta, the campaign chairman, they will take that list of about 20 people and they'll openly do a vet of probably about five or six people that could start as soon as she clinches the nomination. Now, that could come, if all goes according to their plan, as early as mid-May and then they will start this vetting process, which is a really deep dive into the lives of five or six people. Hillary Clinton's made clear she wants the initial pool of 20 to reflect the diversity of the party, of her supporters. They expect a couple of African-American Democrats to be in that pool, a couple of Hispanics, also a couple of women.

BOLDUAN: How real is the possibility, from your conversations and what you're hearing, of an all-female ticket?

HEALY: Kate, it's looking unlikely for a couple reasons. One is the Clintons and the Clinton campaign feel that the historic nature of this is all about Hillary Clinton becoming the first female Democratic nominee, they hope, and possibly the first female president. They don't feel they need two women on the ticket necessarily, and in a way they want the spotlight on Hillary Clinton as the history-making figure here.

The other thing is, is just in terms of candidates, you know, who that V.P. would be, Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Warren don't have great chemistry. Elizabeth Warren has been a Senator for two and a half years. While she's a champion and a hero of the progressive left, Hillary Clinton sees herself as a progressive candidate. She doesn't feel like she needs Elizabeth. There are, you know, a few other Senators, but the view is that there are other candidates who could bring more to the ticket. BERMAN: There's the unique quality in your story that this person,

whoever it may be, will have to have. This person, you report, is going to have to have the ability to deal with Bill Clinton or at least accept that former President Bill Clinton would have a unique role in a Hillary Clinton White House.

HEALY: Exactly. And, John, I mean, you remember well what the Bush/Cheney dynamic was like, but also certainly Bill Clinton, Al Gore, and Hillary Clinton, and Hillary Clinton taking on a lot of the power as first lady that sometimes a vice president would have. So she has that perspective very much firsthand of what the rivalries and the tensions can be like between a powerful spouse and a vice president. Hillary Clinton has made pretty clear, certainly behind the scenes, that she wants Bill Clinton to be taking on discrete kind of missions for her, probably being a real voice in terms of economic policy. So the question becomes, you know, how much is the vice president, whoever she chooses, you know, able to sort of accept that, be, you know, humble and grateful, but also carve out their own sphere. Sometimes the argument is that kind of an elder statesman figure might fit into that because that person is not automatically by running for president the minute Hillary gets sworn in, running eight years later, but she's more likely to pick someone younger, like someone who may be running after her hoped-for two terms are over.

BOLDUAN: Patrick Healy, thank you so much.

HEALY: Thank you.

BOLDUAN: Fascinating stuff.

BERMAN: All right. He has called a spoiler. But Ted Cruz sees him perhaps as a savior. But with only one win under his belt, can John Kasich really help Ted Cruz stop Donald Trump? Can they do it together? We're going to speak with a key John Kasich supporter next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[11:51:33] BERMAN: All right. Moments from now, Donald Trump will respond live to that deal that's been called by him a horrible act of desperation, the new sort of alliance between Ted Cruz and John Kasich, planning to divvy up several of the remaining states. Cruz will campaign only in Indiana, Kasich will campaign in Oregon and New Mexico as an effort to derail Donald Trump's path to the nomination.

Here is how the two rivals-turn-sort-of-allies explain it just a short time ago.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We had discussions with the Kasich campaign, we made a decision about allocating resources. We decided to allocate our time, energy, and resources on the state of Indiana, and Governor Kasich decided to allocate his resources elsewhere.

GOV. JOHN KASICH (R-OH), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I feel that it's very fair for me to be able to go to areas where I can spend my resources most effectively. And the same is true for Senator Cruz. What's the big deal?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BOLDUAN: What's the big deal?

Let's discuss. Joining us now is Pennsylvania Congressman Charlie Dent, a supporter of John Kasich for president.

Congressman, thank you so much for your time.

REP. CHARLIE DENT, (R), PENNSYLVANIA: Thank you for having me. Appreciate it.

BOLDUAN: So first -- of course, of course.

This deal was announced over night. Really an unprecedented deal, and they were talking about this agreement. And then John Kasich was asked today what his message was to Indiana voters. He said, I never told them not to vote for me. They ought to vote for me. Really? Is that the message to Indiana voters after a deal like this, Congressman?

DENT: Well, look, the two campaigns obviously reached an agreement. John Kasich is going to stay out of Ted Cruz's way in Indiana and Ted Cruz will stay out of John Kasich's way in Oregon and New Mexico. It's that simple. It's an agreement. Donald Trump is outraged. But the two campaigns said they committed an act of politics, plain and simple. No big deal here. And Donald Trump ought to stop his whining. Here's a man who wrote "The Art of the Deal" and he's shocked at the agreement between these two campaigns. There's going to be an open convention and that's what Donald Trump is afraid. He's afraid of that open convention because he realizes he may not get the 1,237 number walking out of that convention, if he does not have that number walking in.

BERMAN: Congressman, do you want Ted Cruz to win Indiana?

DENT: I want John Kasich to win Indiana. I don't want Ted Cruz to win. I believe firmly that John Kasich is the only electable candidate in the Republican field, the only one who can beat Hillary Clinton. In fact, Ted Cruz, recently, several weeks ago, called on John Kasich to drop out of the race. Had John Kasich dropped out of the race, as Ted Cruz wanted, had he done that, Donald Trump would have sealed this nomination some time ago. That's a fact. And now at least it's good to know Ted Cruz has acknowledged that fact that he needs John Kasich in this race to make sure we go to an open convention.

BOLDUAN: Congressman, how does this act of politics work? How does this work out for either of these candidates, the one you support, especially if they make a deal, but then he's still saying vote for me? How does that work?

DENT: I thought the agreement was simply this, that John Kasich was going to spend his resources in those two states, New Mexico and Oregon, and Ted Cruz would spend his resources in Indiana, and they would stay out of each other's way. I know if the agreement -- I wasn't part of the agreement but I don't think it's telling their voters to vote for one candidate or the other. I think they simply agreed to extend their resources in different directions.

BOLDUAN: You still think voters in Indiana should vote for John Kasich.

DENT: I didn't hear you, I'm sorry?

[11:55:13] BOLDUAN: You still think voters in Indiana should vote for John Kasich.

DENT: Yes, I do. I think they should. If people are going to vote for the candidate they believe in, and there's a lot of people in Indiana who greatly admire Governor Kasich in the state right next door and they're going to vote for John Kasich. I would expect it. I would encourage people to. We're going to have a big primary in Pennsylvania tomorrow. You know, right now, it's Donald Trump's up a little bit over John Kasich, 36, 26, 24. We have a big race in Pennsylvania and we're spending a lot of resources right now just trying to get our vote out to help Governor Kasich prevail here in Pennsylvania.

BERMAN: Congressman Charlie Dent, thank you so much. Hopefully, we'll talk to you after Pennsylvania, talks about the results there. Thanks, sir.

DENT: Thank you.

BOLDUAN: Thank you.

Right now, let's turn to big announcement coming from President Obama. The U.S. is increasing its support in the fight against ISIS. This morning, President Obama announced he's sending 250 U.S. Special Forces to Syria. They're joining 50 Special Op forces already in the region.

BERMAN: The president said these troops have already been crucial in pushing ISIS out of key territory but he made it clear that it is Syrian forces -- or anti-Syrian regime forces who are leading the battle.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're not going to be leading the fight on the ground. But they will be essential in providing the training and assisting local forces that continue to drive ISIL back.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: Joining us now to discuss this, and plus a really big CNN special coming up tonight, Fareed Zakaria.

Fareed, what is the nature of this deployment and how much more United States in Syria? And is 250 enough to do anything?

FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST, "FAREED ZAKARIA GPS": Probably not. I think that the fundamental problem we face in Syria is we do not have a local force that has military power and political legitimacy that we can back. In other words, we can roll back ISIS, these Special Ops couldn't do it, but let's say we put in 20,000 ground troops, we roll them back, and then what? Who takes over the land? Who runs it? What is the army that controls it? What is the political group that controls it? We don't have an answer to that. And the absence of that, these are small incremental measures. My sense is that these Special Ops are working well so they're doubling down on a strategy that's working well but, still, these are tactical victories. The strategic victory comes when you find local Syrians that can politically and militarily replace ISIS.

BOLDUAN: You try to get to the core question in a really provocative special tonight that airs this evening, and the question is, why do they hate us? "Why They Hate Us" is the title of the piece. What have you found? And why does answering this question matter so much?

ZAKARIA: If you look at ISIS, even if we roll them back, the most significant strength that ISIS has, from the point of view of the United States or the West, is that they are able to recruit people. They're able to recruit people to come to them. They get trained or they don't get trained and they go back or they inspire the people like the San Bernardino killings. And I was trying answer the question of why? What is the strength of their idea or their ideology? In a sense, I'm trying to answer Donald Trump's question. Donald Trump said to Anderson a couple of months ago, I think Islam hates us. And Anderson said, is it all of Islam or radical Islam? He said, well, you should try to figure that out. If you can, you'll win a Pulitzer. He didn't realize Pulitzers aren't given to broadcasters. But, never mind. The point is we are trying to answer that question.

BERMAN: You talked to a lot of people, some really interesting people in this.

ZAKARIA: What surprised me most was the degree to which the people who have spent a lot of time with jihadis, you know, people who have gone through the interrogations, who tried to understand who these people were, didn't think religion was at the heart of it. They thought these were young, impressionable, alienated men, who had, you know, kind of gotten radicalized before they had become Islamized, if you know what I mean. They were people who were looking for some ideology of protest and that that's what they got. Phil Munn oversaw the FBI interrogation program, and said, you know, it reminded him of the Irish kids he remembers from his youth. There's a gang mentality, a group mentality. Of course, religion is very important and we devote a whole segment to the Koran and how it's used and misused, but he was struck by the fact that you also had to understand the appeal of the gang, the appeal of the spectacular venture that was being offered to these young people.

BERMAN: Fareed, thank you so much. Sounds fascinating.

Be sure to watch "WHY THEY HATE US," at 9:00 eastern right here on CNN.

BOLDUAN: Thank you so much for joining us AT THIS HOUR.

BERMAN: "LEGAL VIEW" with Ashleigh Banfield starts now.