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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES

Khizr Khan Responds To Trump's Latest Comments; Khan: I'm Not Looking For An Apology; I Want Empathy; Report: Trump Memo Calls For "Urgent Pivot" From Khan Controversy; Trump Not Backing Ryan, McCain For Re-election; Trump's Purple Heart Remarks; Source: Some Trump Staffers Incredibly Frustrated; Non-Travel Zika Cases Rise To 15 In Florida. Aired 9-10p ET

Aired August 2, 2016 - 21:00   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[21:00:08] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: And good evening. We begin this hour with Khizr Khan, father of Army Captain Humayun Khan. He called out Donald Trump during the Democratic convention. And Donald Trump has not stopped hitting back since even though he's drawn intense fire from virtually all corners including from prominent Republicans. Mr. Khan joins us once again.

Again, I appreciate you being with us. You know, when you entered the political arena as you did during the Democratic National Convention, I assume you knew you would come under some attention yourself from Donald Trump, from the surrogates. I want to get your reaction to some of the things just we've heard in the last day or two from some of the surrogates. Donald Trump, as we talked about in the last hour gave an interview yesterday saying that perhaps the real reason you're angry is because of his policy to keep terrorists out of the country.

Somehow I assume implying or suggesting directly that you wouldn't mind having terrorists in the country. You responded to that in our last broadcast. But we also just heard from a -- one of Donald Trump's surrogates who is I think a liaison to veterans. And I want to make sure I get the quote exactly right that he said. Actually, I don't have it right now but I will get it.

Earlier Donald Trump's son Eric was asked about whether his father would be willing to apologize to you and he seemed to imply that his father had apologized to you. You say that's not important to you, though.

KHIZR KHAN, FATHER OF FALLEN MUSLIM-AMERICAN SOLDIER: Not at all, really. What is important to me now is that end this back and forth, back and forth that had been lack of caliber on the other side. Just imagine and I want to indulge all of his surrogates, after we made the speech, if Donald Trump would have not taken that cheap shot at the gold star mother, we'd not be having these conversations, these discussions.

Sometime for a candidate for a higher office has to have the capacity to bear with the criticism. If I had exercised my First Amendment rights as Mr. Trump does, as Donald Trump does, again and again and again, as he had been maligning Hillary Clinton, calling her names and other leaders, if he can exercise the freedom of his speech rights, so can I.

But he is the candidate for the highest office, a much larger caliber is needed, tolerance, patience. When a person becomes Commander-in- Chief, president, you are president and Commander-in-Chief of everybody that has supported you and that has not supported you.

COOPER: Let me ask you, just yesterday an official adviser on Veteran's Affairs just the guy who was referencing before and the Trump campaign Al Baldasaro tweeted out this. He said, he tweeted out a link to a blog post which essentially accuses you of being a Muslim brotherhood agent who wants to advance Sharia Law in the United States adding that you used your son as a political pawn. I want you to be able to respond to that.

KHAN: Yeah. And I hope his surrogates are listening so they can take note of it what I'm about to say. I have no concern, I have no link, I have never been of that thought of that. I assure you I am an educated person. There is and I hope that other not so thoughtful Republican leaders are listening, there is constitutional amendment in the constitution of United States and that is called equal protection of law under 14th Amendment. Sharia Law as we have titled, there is no such thing as Sharia Law.

These are laws of various Muslim countries which are hodgepodge of British laws, French laws, Portuguese laws. In there, there is tremendous discrimination of genders which disqualifies them under the constitution of the United States, cannot be implemented, cannot be brought. How can I be a person that has read this, I preach that, that I do not stand for any Sharia Law because there is no such thing.

COOPER: Let me also ask you something else we he heard from the Trump campaign just over the last two days. Yesterday I talked to a former admiral, rear admiral who is supporting Donald Trump as one of his advisers, who suggested -- who sort of turned the subject from should Donald Trump apologize to the rules of engagement for troops in Iraq, implying somehow that the rules of engagement were so restrictive that they played a role in your son's killing, something else that another Trump spokesman, Katrina Pierson also said today on CNN.

[21:05:15] We have the sound bite from her today. Let's listen to what she says.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KATRINA PIERSON, TRUMP'S SPOKESPERSON: .. I don't understand. But surely you can understand the confusion considering how Donald Trump never voted for the Iraq War. Hillary Clinton did. And then she didn't support the troops to have what they need. It was under Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton that changed the rules of engagement that probably cost his life.

So I don't understand why it's so hard to understand, why Donald Trump was confused about why he was being held responsible for something he had nothing to do with, while Hillary Clinton had everything to do with.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Katrina Pierson as usual ...

(END VIDEO CLIP)

COOPER: Pierson is clearly either confused about her or simply ignorant of is that your son was killed in 2004, Donald Trump -- Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were not the president and secretary of state in 2004. But I just wanted to give the other respond.

KHAN: Do I need to say anything? Lack of understanding, lack of factual correctness, it's just nothing but political vote pandering. They are trying to create this fear in people's mind. They have come up with this terms and these terminology that they continue to talk about without really knowing the facts about what they are talking.

I want to put a footnote in front, I received information from where my website was, it is down now. This is the maliciousness and Donald Trump should say to his surrogates that no more, no more harm, no more ugliness. I received the call from the host of the website saying that we are receiving tremendous amount of hits and especially on certain pages of your website. I have a three-page small website and there is a risk that somebody will damage it, somebody may hack it. I asked them what do you suggest. They said under such circumstances, we normally keep it offline when this madness will go away, we will bring it back. I asked them to do that.

To which I began to then receive e-mails and calls why your website is down, why your website is down. This is the ugliness of this discourse. There could be some civility in this discourse. It is a political discourse, of course. There could be some discussion of policy and all that instead of personal ugliness.

So I am not engaging anymore because I see no hope, I do see hope where the people who are thinking to vote for this candidate, I think it is plenty clear, his surrogates will not admit, it's plenty clear to the world that this person is not fit for the office he's seeking. He wants to do everything, I will do it by myself, I will do it in democracy, you cannot do this. That is against the basic principle of democracy.

Therefore, my comments on that is that I really do not want to put myself and my son, my dignified son, through this mud slinging process and lack of decency, of conversation, is just amazing. I would again appeal to his surrogates that please show some decency. Refrain from what you attempted out of anger and out of this ugly partisanness.

COOPER: So, Mr. Khan, I appreciate you talking with us tonight. My condolences obviously to you and your family and thank you for taking the time this evening. Appreciate it. We're going to take ...

KHAN: Thank you very much.

COOPER: ... take a short break more and the damn politics ahead. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[21:12:53] COOPER: We're back after our conversation with Khizr Khan. Reaction now from Inside Politics contributor and Associated Press Chief White House correspondent Julie Pace, also chief political correspondent Dana Bash, Michael D'Antonio, author of the "Truth About Trump", Timothy O'Brien, author of "TrumpNation", "The Donald". And back with us is Patrick Healey of the "New York Times".

Tim, I mean you, things were sued by Donald Trump, a case which was settled, right?

TIMOTHY O'BRIEN, AUTHOR: Right, he lost it.

COOPER: He lost the suit. Is Donald Trump capable of resisting responding to any perceived slight? Because that's essentially what certainly Mr. Khan, you know, feels like Donald Trump is -- has -- I mean he continues to talk about this, even yesterday, suggesting that Mr. Khan essentially is upset that Donald Trump, in Donald Trump's opinion is tough on stopping terrorists from coming to the U.S.

O'BRIEN: Well I think Donald's a remarkably thin-skinned person especially for somebody who is essentially a bully. But I think bullying is evidence of how insecure he is about a lot of things. And I think his first default mechanism is to lash back at anyone he perceives as a critic. I think what's different with Mr. Khan is you had months of Donald going after journalists and politicians and voters don't care if you attack journalists and politicians.

But when you attack the father of a dead soldier, who is a modest and humble man, but principled and courageous, you're dealing in a different world. And I think this is a turning point in the election.

COOPER: And yet, you know, now all the surrogates are coming up with all these sort of other allegations, there's a lot of stuff in right wing media about he's trying to get, you know, a business getting immigrants into the United States, that he's part of the Muslim brotherhood, that he wants Sharia Law, all of which he says is point- blank not true.

O'BRIEN: But, you know, all of that is noise. Because it comes back to a fundamental thing. He gave a speech at the convention in which he said I have sacrificed my son, what have you sacrificed. And the response from Donald Trump is, my sacrifice is hiring people, which is an absurd response.

COOPER: I want to -- according to The Hill website, the Trump campaign sent a memo this week to surrogates titled urgent pivot. It said in part, "the media's working against our efforts and our messaging specifically as it relates to the tragic death of Captain Humayun Khan. We are asking you to review and use the attached talking points in your daily messaging."

[21:15:09] It's interesting Patrick, I mean they clearly feel like get off this topic as quickly as possible.

PATRICK HEALEY, "THE NEW YORK TIMES" REPORTER: Yeah. These are standard talking points. Campaigns put it out all the time. But this is sort of extraordinary. It's basically we can't solve this, so we need to change the subject entirely. The problem is that Donald Trump himself doesn't seem to have gotten those talking points, the media asks him a question, and he almost can't help himself in either sometime taking the bait or just sort of obscuring whatever political message they want to have. You have been in the situation; I have been in the situation. We know when we ask him a question, for better or worse, he's going to give us kind of oftentimes this explosive answer and the question for so many Republicans is after so many months, when is he going to start self-editing and tighten up?

COOPER: Michael, it's interesting though, does it surprise you that he still continues to, I mean a, not back down obviously, but even yesterday given interview with a whole new rational against Mr. Khan?

MICHAEL D' ANTONIO, TRUMP BIOGRAPHER: Well, Donald's first and only point of reference is Donald Trump. So everything comes through this filter of how is it going to affect Donald Trump, how can Donald Trump define this person in a way that makes him the enemy and somehow allows me to defeat him.

So everything for him is a contest. Everything is a pursuit of dominance and Mr. Khan has shifted things so that now, the debate is on his ground. This is a matter of morality, not power and Mr. Khan holds the cards there.

COOPER: Julie, in yet just politically for somebody who is running for the highest office in the land, he's missed a number of opportunities because this has become such a story, because he's continued to kind of stoke the fires here.

You know, he could have focused on Hillary Clinton's, you know, answer to Chris Wallace on Sunday, you know, mischaracterizing what the FBI director said, and yet that's not the top story.

JULIE PACE, INSIDE POLITICS CONTRIBUTOR: And that is such a part of this frustration that we hear from Republicans on Capitol Hill, in governors' mansions across the country. It's not just the topics that Trump decides to latch on to and can spend weeks at a time focusing on, it's that by doing that, he misses opportunities to make his case against Hillary Clinton. She made some comments on her e-mails that any other Republican would have tried to campaign on this week.

They would have been sending talking points to their surrogates about that and yet it's a missed opportunity for him and going forward, if he is going to try to reach out to other voters, to independents, to maybe conservative Democrats and try to bring them into his camp, he's going to have to do more than pick these fights.

COOPER: Patrick, obviously the other big story this hour is Donald Trump's comments about Paul Ryan and John McCain, essentially saying he's not ready to endorse them, kind of using the same language that Paul Ryan once used about Donald Trump.

HEALY: Yeah. No, it's extraordinary. I mean it clearly it's still some under his skin that Paul Ryan even after Paul Ryan was the chair of his own convention and picked, you know, Mike Pence in part, hoping to kind of unify the party, and Donald Trump still wants to try those sort of stick it to Ryan. I mean it still this sort of frustration with this kind of establishment Republicans that they haven't fallen in line and it just becomes another part of the media narrative, I mean it sort of on and on and on where Donald Trump isn't talking about Hillary Clinton and making this a referendum on Hillary Clinton, but instead ...

(CROSSTALK)

COOPER: It becomes it can do this to be about him, and Tim, I mean he had talked though about the importance of trying to unify the Republican Party but it certainly doesn't seem top of his list.

O'BRIEN: No. Donald Trump's not a unity candidate. You know, He's a divisive explosive force and I think what you're seeing is sort of the after effect of the tornado touching down in the middle of the GOP.

COOPER: Dana, how personal is this for Donald Trump you think?

DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: It seems like it's incredibly personal, which is why even for Donald Trump, the most unconventional candidate who has done remarkable things politically just going with his gut and shooting from the hip, even for him, this kind of behavior, when I say behavior, it is just kind of going off- script every day in many different directions as opposed to focusing where Republicans want to focus on Hillary Clinton on the issues where they think she's beatable.

And -- whether it is her honest and trustworthiness or it is her positions in the past on trade that he is not doing that and it's almost as if he can't help himself and I'm just even as we are on the air texting with some people who are close to the Trump world talking about how incredibly frustrated the people are who are closest to Trump even, because they can't get him to stay focused where they want him to stay focused which is on some of those issues.

And others and just kind of, you know, getting caught up in the machine of Donald Trump because of personal affronts that he may or may not feel.

[21:20:04] COOPER: Yeah. We got to take a quick break coming up next, more on Donald Trump's war with the GOP. One of the leading figures in the GOP is of course Mike Pence as Patrick Healy mentioned what do his supporters think of all this that's coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: One of our breaking news tonight, Donald Trump declining to endorse House Speaker Paul Ryan, the highest ranking Republican elected official in the land or Senator John McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential nominee. Trump's refusal to endorse McCain came as his running mate Mike Pence was stumping in Arizona, McCain's home state.

The senator we've said has been extremely critical of Trump's feud with the Khans. All this was a big part of the backdrop when Governor Pence campaigned today. Gary Tuchman was at a Tucson event and talked to some supporters.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the next vice president of the United States.

GARY TUCHMAN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's quite a day for Mike Pence. To hit the campaign trail in Arizona, just as his running mate, Donald Trump, has declared he will not endorse Arizona Senior Senator John McCain in his upcoming primary election. Sarah Seagrove attended the Pence town hall in Tucson and likes Trump and McCain, but ...

[21:25:01] SARAH SEAGROVE, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Personally, I think that Trump has a plan and if McCain is not part of his long-term plan, then I support Trump's decision.

TUCHMAN: Most of the people here are fervent Trump-Pence supporters and that loyalty is evident.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Frankly, I wouldn't want to endorse John McCain either. He's kind of betrayed our party and I can't support him.

TUCHMAN: The Trump-McCain relationship has been strained since last summer when Trump declared that former Vietnam POW McCain is not a hero.

DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I like people who weren't captured, OK? I hate to tell you.

TUCHMAN: On Monday, McCain released a statement blasting Trump for the way he treated Khizr and Ghazala Khan, the parents of the U.S. soldier killed in Iraq. This is all just by the spoke harshly of Trump at the Democratic National Convention. But McCain stopped short of withdrawing his support of Trump for president.

TUCHMAN: Do you agree what he said (ph)?

CHRIS BAXTER, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I think he has his opinion and I have mine.

TUCHMAN: What's yours?

BAXTER: My opinion is you don't (inaudible).

TUCHMAN: You don't want to tell (inaudible). Do you like that about him know that he's tough and he doesn't apologize at it?

BAXTER: Yeah.

TUCHMAN: But some here do feel McCain did the right thing by writing the letter about what Trump said.

Do you agree with John McCain though of what he said about Trump? VINCE GONAZALES, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Yes. Yes. He should have never said it.

TUCHMAN: Would it have me you feel better as a Trump supporter if Donald Trump said, I watched him during the convention. I am really sorry they lost their son and left it at that?

GONAZALES: That would have been a more prudent approach to it. Yeah. But I think commenting on the fact that she made that ultimate sacrifice and so did the father, but her not saying anything could have been part of their culture. He didn't know.

TUCHMAN: There are some here who feel this goes deeper and darker.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah. Mr. Khan, who's a member of the Muslim brotherhood supports ...

TUCHMAN: That's not true.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, no, no.

TUCHMAN: Well, that's not true, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, he is.

TUCHMAN: However, far more people here feel this way.

BARD DOSSER, TRUMP SUPPORTER: But that's Donald Trump.

TUCHMAN: If he apologized, would you respect Donald Trump more?

DOSSER: Absolutely.

TUCHMAN: You would like him to apologize?

DOSSER: I think it's probably something that he should go about to do. Yeah.

TUCHMAN: But based on the history of this campaign, don't expect any apologies.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

COOPER: Gary, you said we're getting word that late where Governor Pence is actually meeting with Senator McCain tonight in Phoenix. Do we know more about it?

TUCHMAN: Well, John McCain, Anderson, has said nothing publicly, but a short time ago, both men did get together. This was previously scheduled before the news broke. We are told by John McCain officials who are affiliated with him that it was a pleasant meeting, but it was a private meeting. So therefore, we don't know if there were any fireworks.

John McCain is known as a blunt guy. He's not shy in retiring, but we don't know if he said anything about what Trump said. You know, Donald Trump has said a lot of things to John McCain, but John McCain has continued to officially back him for the presidency. We'll wait to see if that changes.

One other thing I wanted to mention to you, Anderson, John McCain has served in the Senate for almost 30 years and in the House of Representatives for four years. His primary is coming up four weeks from today on August 30th. So this is crunch time for his campaign. Anderson?

COOPER: All right. Gary thanks very much.

Joining us now is CNN's Political Commentator Christine Quinn and Democratic Strategist Richard Socarides, both a Clinton supporters. Patrick Healey is back, Author for the New York Times, so as Republican Strategist Susan Del Percio, Trump Supporter Kayleigh McEnany and Trump Surrogate, John Jay LaValle.

Its interesting, John, to hear some of these folks they already saying, yeah, you know, I wish Trump would apologize, but they're still Trump supporters. Do you think this has in any way kind of been more of a turning point than some of the other so-called controversies have been in the past for Donald Trump?

I mean, do you think because it's, you know, it's not a politician, it's, you know, Mr. and Mrs. Khan?

JOHN JAY LAVALLE, TRUMP SURROGATE: Not necessarily. You know, we'll just break it down to the fact that, you know, Donald Trump is going to say the things that are on his mind. He is not a politician. He is a businessperson. And he is running for president of the United States because he wants to change the direction of this country.

He's going to upset the establishment. That's part of his design. He's going to shake it up, both Republicans and Democrats. He's called both out all during the course of the primary and during the course of this general election. He's going to continue to do so. And, you know, I think he's right for doing so.

COOPER: Kayleigh, I mean, you support him, not supporting Paul Ryan, even though Paul Ryan opened up the convention, you know, and has endorsed Donald Trump as has John McCain.

KAYLEIGH MCENANY, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yeah, there's an immense amount of anger among Republican voters towards both Paul Ryan and John McCain and the establishment class. They lost a lot of Republican voters. They lost the likes of important figures in our party like Mark Levin and Laura Ingraham.

When they went to Washington and didn't do what they promised they would do. When they went to Washington, supported executive amnesty. You have McCain is supporting cap and trade. There's anger among the base towards the political class. And I think Donald Trump it's a smart move not to endorse people that one, he is criticized during his whole campaign, the Washington Insiders and, you know, two, have betrayed Republican voters. COOPER: Does it worry you though, I mean, as a Republican that, OK, so, he's alienating, you know, those people who think he should have apologized to the Khans or not say what he initially said. He's also alienating now more establishment Republicans or continues to, rather than reaching in more people.

[21:30:07] SUSAN DEL PERCIO, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Right. This is dividing the party. It's hurting, it will hurt candidates across the board. That's what I'm worried about. I'm worried about the down ballot effects of Donald Trump who really only focuses on himself and doesn't really have any loyalty to the Republican Party.

You know, we tell you -- I hear them talk about the establishment, how he's fighting it, and yet Paul Ryan was the chairman of the convention. Yet Donald Trump went down and tried to get support from congressional Republicans in the House and the Senate.

So he can't have it both ways. This was a flippant silly remark in a lot of ways that was petty that he shouldn't have said. If you need further proof of how the campaign is going, poor Governor Pence. I mean he gets caught in the middle of this because he probably wasn't alerted to what Donald Trump was going to this.

COOPER: One of the reasons he reached out to governor Pence and got Pence on board in the first place was to try to bring the party together and to try to calm sort of more establishment figures. So back then, he seemed to care what the establishment was thinking.

HEALY: No, that's right. I mean Governor Pence was going to be the great validator of the establishment for Donald Trump and was going to help make him look like kind of the leader and even, you know, potentially kind of the unifying figure for the party that Republicans wanted. What matters here now though right, is the undecided voters in places like Pennsylvania and Ohio, Florida, who really don't like Hillary Clinton and they're looking for reasons not to vote for Hillary Clinton.

And the undecided voters that I've talked to recently, they talk about wanting to see Donald Trump looking like a leader, like a statesman, like someone who they can imagine as president. And when he gets into these scrapes, I mean when he is someone who is alienating you know, the nominee of the party from just eight years ago, think what you will of John McCain, it just raises questions about you know, what is this guy about, what is he going to say a year or a month into his presidency.

COOPER: And yet Christine, I mean, amidst all of this, he continues to talk about the Khans. I mean he was probably asked about in that interview yesterday to a local station, but he kind of brought up a whole new reason, saying well, it's probably because Mr. Khan, you know because I'm so tough on stopping thousands of Islamic terrorists from entering the United States, Mr. Khan doesn't like that.

CHRISTINE QUINN, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF WIN: Right. I mean, first I thing we have to first recognize be on the campaign the damage those kind of statements do. We saw with the man in the story who firmly believes Mr. Khan is a member of the Islamic brotherhood when that is not true at all. And those kinds of comments made by Donald Trump is what start to feed that type of anti-Islamic, anti-Muslim fever, you know, fever and feelings out there.

I find it just beyond comprehension why Donald Trump both from a political perspective, a strategical perspective and a human perspective, why he started this but why he re-brought it up today. I mean today theoretically could have been the day that it began to be the end of the story and he brought it back up.

COOPER: It was interesting Richard, I mean The Hill is reporting about this, you know, missive that went out to surrogates saying pivot away from those, pivot away from those.

RICHARD SOCARIDES, CLINTON SUPPORTER: Well I think that's part you know, that's part of the people, those are the people within the campaign who are trying to see Trump not be Trump. I mean what I think we're seeing now is the real Trump. And actually, I think what's happening with Paul Ryan and with John McCain doesn't surprise me at all, because I think we have seen from Donald Trump that he cannot stand the idea that someone would treat him unfairly or that someone would question him, and when McCain and Ryan questioned his statements on the Khans, I think he thought that was fair game.

I mean Donald Trump cannot stand any criticism. That's why he's, you know

(CROSSTALK)

COOPER: I mean its John, and Kayleigh, and supporters, it's worked for him, certainly in the primaries. I mean that was one of the things people loved about him.

MCENANY: Yes, I think it's important to understand how this all started. We saw two years ago where the House Majority Leader, Eric Cantor lost out of nowhere to a no name professor. Everyone was shocked. It's the anger started there. And we saw it trickle through this election, and Donald Trump ...

SOCARIDES: But, you know, I completely agree with you.

MCENANY: ... well let me finish Richard.

COOPER: Let her first.

MCENANY: When Donald Trump was reaching 1237 they said he's not going to reach it. When he reaches 1237 then we will accept him. He reaches 1237, then there's an effort to change the rules. There has been a consistent effort in the Republican Party, the Republican elite to dethrone the voters who make up the party.

LAVALLE: I am talking about independent voters here. So think about what Donald Trump's doing. Hillary Clinton is ...

COOPER: You think he's getting them? You think he's actually winning them over? LAVALLE: Well yes, because Hillary Clinton is the epitome of the establishment. She is Washington.

COOPER: Is he winning over independents? Hold on.

(CROSSTALK)

QUINN: After the DNC, if you look at the polls, there are two things that relate to this. We, the Democrats, picked up about 7 percent of independents after the DNC. Donald Trump lost almost the exact same number of independents. So this isn't my opinion. These are the numbers and also the numbers ...

COOPER: Right.

MCENANY: So we should be talking ..

(CROSSTALK)

COOPER: One at a time, one at a time. You wish Republicans were talking more about Hillary Clinton.

DEL PERCIO: Yes. That's what Republicans who want to win should be talking about Hillary Clinton.

[21:35:00] COOPER: But -- well, Richard that's what's interesting, I mean, it's allowed the Clinton campaign to essentially just go into radio silence and let all of this just churn up.

QUINN: Well I actually don't think ...

SOCARIDES: Indeed.

QUINN: I don't want to disagree with my, you know, fellow Hillary supporter. The campaign hasn't gone into radio silence. Actually Hillary's put out just in a pass day or so a very detailed, specific jobs plan because this isn't for her just about responding to the Donald Trump missive of the day.

COOPER: Would she done on TV, is she not doing, you know ...

(CROSSTALK)

COOPER: We going to -- we had to take a break.

Just ahead, more on the controversy of Donald's Trump stirred up when a veteran gave him his Purple Heart. Trump's reaction, prompted and (inaudible) Tammy Duckworth and Purple Heart recipient that fire off a tweet, more in that ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: Earlier tonight I talked to Khizr Khan about Donald Trump's reaction when a veteran gave him his Purple Heart medal today at campaign events, Mr Khan actually brought up, Trump thanked the man, said he had always wanted one and said it was a lot easier getting in this way, than serving in combat. Here is Mr. Khan's reaction earlier tonight.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[21:39:57] KHAN: Listen to me and I want his surrogates to listen to me. You should have pinned that back to that veteran's chest and should have hugged him and thanked him. That is lack of -- I'm sorry, I'm shouting. I'm just so upset at this lack of empathy, lack of common sense. He wants to be the leader of the commander-in-chief of this United States of America?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

COOPER: It's Khizr Khan earlier tonight on this broadcast. Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth who lost both legs in an RPG attack in Iraq also took issue with Trumps remarks, tweeting, this is how an usually looks when you are awarded the Purple Heart, nothing easy about it".

We should point out, of course she's said, Democrat. This latest controversy another reminder in this election the military is center stage with a starring role but not always on he same page.

Here is CNN Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, UNITED STATES PRESIDENT: As commander-in-chief I'm pretty tired of some folk's trash talking America's military and troops.

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: The military, an unlikely target in the 2016 political drama.

TRUMP: Our military is a disaster.

STARR: And it's not just Donald Trump and President Obama going after each other. The Khans, parents of a Muslim-American soldier killed in Iraq, were criticized by Trump.

This election cycle, there are boos and jeers from all sides. An air force mother booed at a Mike Pence rally.

CATHERINE BYRNE, AIR FORCE MOTHER: Was there ever be -- will there ever be a point in time when you're able to look at Trump in the eye and tell him enough is enough?

STARR: At the other end of the spectrum, Bernie Sanders' supporters jeered several speakers and chanted "no more war" at the Democratic convention.

JOHN ALLEN, RETIRED U.S. MARINE CORPS: We must not and we could not stand on the sidelines.

STARR: Recently retired members of the military themselves are weighing in during this political cycle. Retired General John Allen speaking on behalf of Hillary Clinton had a dire and perhaps unprecedented warning that troops might not obey some orders of a President Trump.

ALLEN: I think we would be facing civil military crisis the like of which we have not seen in this country before.

STARR: Trump surrogate, retired Lieutenant General Mike Flynn just as fiery and with his own warning.

MICHEAL FLYNN, RETIRED U.S. ARMY: Under Barack Obama, we have no coherent strategy to protect our citizens and under Hillary Clinton, it will be more of the same.

STARR: All of this leading the recently retired chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, General Martin Dempsey, to say the two retired generals and all military should stay out politics, writing, "It was a mistake for them to participate as they did. It was a mistake for our presidential candidates to ask them to do so".

Certain issues like reinstating waterboarding, a practice Donald Trump has raised as a possibility under his leadership have compelled this former four star general and CIA director to speak out.

MARTIN DEMPSEY, FORMER CIA DIRECTOR: If he wants someone waterboarded, he better bring his own bucket.

STARR: Even the traditionally apolitical group the veterans of foreign wars, is weighing in on presidential politics. Just another example of how the military has become a flash point in this very contentious, very unusual presidential campaign.

Barbara Starr, CNN, The Pentagon.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

COOPER: And the military order the Purple Heart of veteran's organizations has also responded to Donald Trump's remarks about the medal. And his statement, the spokesman said and I quote, "The Purple Heart is America's oldest decoration created by George Washington in 1782 and nobody tries to get one. There are only two reasons for someone to be awarded a Purple Heart medal, either they are killed or wounded on the battlefield while serving in the Armed Forces of the United States".

The statement goes on "I would than hope anyone who receives a Purple Heart medal for any other reason understands its importance and meaning and would not do anything with it that would in any way denigrate its special meaning for those who have received it".

Joining us now, is CNN military analyst, a retired U.S. Army General Mark Hertling, among his medals, a Purple Heart, as well. General Hertling, you were awarded Purple Heart for being injured in combat in the first U.S. war in Iraq and I understand you take offense at Donald Trump accepting the Purple Heart as a gift. Tell me why.

MARK HERTLING, RETIRED U.S. ARMY: No, I don't take the offense at him accepting it, Anderson, as a Purple Heart recipient, you can present your Purple Heart to anyone and I have seen those doing it to their family members or their loved ones as a gift. The thing I took offense to is what he said after he received it from this veteran.

And that was that, "Boy, this is something I've always wanted and it sure was a whole lot easier to get it this way" or words to that effect. That's offensive. I have seen quite a few soldiers and military personnel receive the Purple Heart. It isn't something they want to receive, to be sure. It is a very honorable ribbon. It was our first ribbon in the military, as you said, in 1782, and it's not something to be trifled with. Unfortunately, that's what occurred today.

[21:45:07] COOPER: Does it concern you the way the military has sort of been brought up in this election?

HERTLING: Yeah, it definitely, Anderson and as you know, I've repeatedly said to you and others on CNN, as you have asked me to do military analysis that I will not comment specifically on supporting one candidate or another. And it's unfortunate that some of my colleagues have done that. I do not agree with that.

In fact, it's interesting, in your earlier report, General Dempsey and I are very good friends and he was the one when I was offered the job at CNN to tell me to take it, because he thought I could provide some useful benefit in terms of what the military was doing.

But when you go over the edge of supporting a candidate openly and not doing the analysis or hey, this is my experience and this is why I'm saying the things I'm saying the things I'm saying, either right or wrong, that's when unfortunately, the military gets brought into something they should not be involved in. That's political matters. The nation trusts us to be their guardian and we have to obey the orders of any commander-in-chief if they're legal, moral and ethical orders. And that's what we have to maintain.

COOPER: What sort of damage do you think kind of long-term it does to have, you know, and whether it's somebody supporting Hillary Clinton, whether it's somebody supporting Donald Trump and speaking at the convention?

HERTLING: Well, because it brings, it politicizes the security forces. And you know, we can talk about within our ranks and in fact, we are prevented from openly saying things in uniform or supporting a candidate while we are wearing uniform as an active force. When I became a private citizen a few years ago, I'm still, you're still advertising me as a general so that brings certain credence.

Now, what I hope I give is military analysis, to say this is what I saw work or not work on the battlefield or any engagements with other people, or what I have seen in leadership. So I have tried to present that openly and I have truthfully swayed in one way or another because of some of the comments of both of the characters. But as we judge their leadership we have to understand that all leaders are flawed in one way or another and they have to work on their flaws. But sometimes those flaws like we saw today and at other times with Mr. Trump go way over the top.

COOPER: General Hertling, always appreciate having you on. Thank you very much sir, appreciated.

HERTLING: Thank you Anderson.

COOPER: Dana Bash is just getting potentially big breaking news out of the Trump campaign. Dana, what are you learning?

BASH: Anderson, I sort of alluded to this earlier when we were discussing the fallout from all of the days and really almost a week of Donald Trump seemingly going off message in a lot of different directions, and GOP knowledgeable source tells me that there is considerable frustration within the Trump camp about the way things are going, including from Paul Manafort, who is effectively in charge of the campaign right now. That frustration has led all the way to the top, in that the campaign wants to do more traditional strategizing and as you and I were talking about earlier, focus more on Hillary Clinton's record, on policy issues, where they disagree with Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, whether it was on the Khan controversy or today as we were talking about "The Washington Post" interview about Paul Ryan and John McCain.

Those are issues that have taken them off message into a Republican fighting as opposed to going after the Democrat. So that frustration I'm told is real inside the Trump campaign and I'm still doing more reporting to see if there is going to be any fallout or this is just what we suspect might be happening inside and it's just that I'm getting it confirmed by somebody who is knowledgeable about the situation.

COOPER: So just very briefly, I mean do you think from what your understanding is, is the frustration that they don't, those who are frustrated don't believe that Donald Trump has a coherent strategy or that they just disagree with the strategy that he does have?

BASH: I think it's that they have an idea, they have a strategy that even and especially Donald Trump might support, but they can't stick to it when their candidate is going off on these gold star parents, even though they were, you know ...

COOPER: Or the fire marshal or whoever else.

BASH: Or the fire marshal, or on the House speaker, the guy who came to his convention and chaired his convention and nominated his VP candidate. So all of those things I think combined ...

COOPER: Got it.

BASH: ... is not, certainly not what any political strategist would want to do, even for somebody as unconventional as Donald Trump and that is where the frustration is coming. That they just can't stick to any kind of coherent message for all of those reasons.

COOPER: All right, we'll continue to watch that, Dana, thanks for the breaking news. There said the latest in the growing threat of Zika virus, Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins us with that.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [21:53:35] COOPER: Well another case of locally transmitted Zika has been confirmed in Miami Dade County, Florida bringing the total to 15. The new case though was detected outside of which it become a hot zone of source, the Wynwood Arts District in Miami. And for 14 people so far have been infected with the virus.

At dawn tomorrow, the county will begin aerial spraying of the neighborhood. The CDC has already issued an unprecedented travel warning urgent pregnant women to avoid that area. Our Medical Core -- Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, joins us now from Brazil which is of course been battling nature of Zika outbreak for years.

So there's a lot of people out there concerned this could be the beginning of an epidemic in the U.S. considering the disease can be transmitted by people, not just mosquito. How can it spread -- how can the spread be prevented from leaving that one neighborhood?

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the big chances are, Anderson, it probably will leave that one neighborhood. This was anticipated that it would come to South Florida and I think it's anticipated that it's not going to just be relegated to that one neighborhood. You're right. I mean, it's people who trans -- who actually are moving the virus around, right? Somebody will travel from one place to another. They'll get bitten by a mosquito. That mosquito will have the virus in their system and after some point be able to transmit themselves.

But there are a couple of things. First of all, these types of mosquitoes, while they do exist in various parts of the United States, they don't exist in large numbers really outside of South Florida, South Texas, Louisiana these areas that we've been talking about.

So even if people are still moving around, it's unlikely that it will become what is known as sustained local transmission. Meaning, it will start to transmit locally and that will happen over and over again in other areas. That's unlikely to happen.

[21:55:16] One thing that's sort of I think making this difficult we're hearing from the CDC is that mosquitoes in some of these areas appear to be somewhat resistant to the pesticide. Normally, they would be, you know, killed off by these pesticides or insecticides but it's not working as quickly and I think that's been hampering efforts certainly in that part around Miami.

COOPER: It's also sexually transmitted. Can it be -- like how much -- how many people can it go, you know, from one person to another, can that person then spread it to another?

GUPTA: Yeah, yeah. So once the virus is in the system, you know, you get it from somebody, even if it's through mosquito or through sexual transmission, you can then transmit it as well. You know, it's one of those things where if you've been infected after a period of time, the virus will leave your system but in semen, for example, and certain areas of the body, it is -- it's areas of the body that are immune- protected, meaning the immune system doesn't attack those areas and it can live in the body longer, which is why men can sexually transmit it for, you know, up to a couple of months, even three or four months after they've been infected.

COOPER: Sanjay, I appreciate your reporting. Thank you. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: Before we go, a reminder, join us tomorrow night at 9:00 p.m. eastern after our 8:00 show for our second Town Hall, the Libertarian ticket. Former Governor Gary Johnson and William Weld answering voters' questions, I'll be moderating.

[22:00:00] That does it for us. Thanks for watching "CNN TONIGHT" with Don Lemon, starts now.