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Obama: Trump's Claim of Rigged Election "Ridiculous"; Obama: U.S. Did Not Pay $400 Million Ransom to Iran; Clinton Opens Up Nine- Point Lead Versus Trump National Poll; Small Donors Push Trump to $82M Fundraising Haul for July; Florida Starts Aerial Spraying to Fight Zika Virus. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired August 4, 2016 - 19:00   ET


[19:00:07] ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: Next, President Obama breaking news firing back at Donald Trump's charge that the election is rigged calling him ridiculous and a late-breaking poll showing Hillary Clinton's lead over Trump nearly doubling since the convention.

Plus, Trump charging. He's seen video of a plane delivering hundreds of millions of dollars to Iran, video even his staff says they don't have. And the Zika virus spreading to California tonight. Two babies born with serious birth defects. We'll going to go to the front lines of the fight tonight. Let's go OUTFRONT.

Good evening. I'm Erin Burnett, OUTFRONT tonight, the breaking news. President Obama calling Trump ridiculous. In an hour long press conference, the President slamming Trump's charge that the U.S. election is rigged.


PRES. BARACK OBAMA (D), UNITED STATES: That's ridiculous. That doesn't make any sense, and I don't think anyone would take that seriously at.


BURNETT: The President also saying his job is serious business making it clear he doesn't trust Trump with America's nuclear weapons. This comes as a breaking poll tonight shows Hillary Clinton nearly doubling her lead over Trump. The Wall Street Journal NBC News poll showing her leading by nine points. We'll going to have much more on all of that in a moment. First, though, the other breaking news. The President saying it is possible there are full-blown ISIS-controlled networks inside the United States.


OBAMA: We have to do a better job of disrupting networks and those networks are more active in Europe than they are here, but we don't know what we don't know and so it's conceivable that there are some networks here that could be activated.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BURNETT: Barbara Starr was at the president's press conference moments ago and joins me now. And Barbara, that was a major statement from the President tonight.

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: It was, indeed, Erin. I asked him about his view right now about the threat to the homeland. One of the other things he said was, and I'm quoting, I think it's serious. So what is the President really talking about? What the President is being briefed on is that ISIS has been expanding far beyond Iraq and Syria in some 18 countries now. We have seen any number of attacks happening in Europe, in Bangladesh, very brutal attacks across many places in the Middle East, as well.

And so the concern is as ISIS is able to stage these external attacks by maybe just inspiring a few people with a few weapons, they can cause such massive damage. The concern like the attack in Istanbul's airport, could ISIS get to people here in the United States? People who do not have a current criminal record, people who may be able to buy weapons who may be part of some inspired attack, but he raises the possibility tonight that this could be a network someday that ISIS might try and activate in the United States. Now, to be clear, the U.S. has very strong homeland security measures and officials will tell you it would be very hard for ISIS operatives to come into the United States, but what about if they're already here -- Erin.

BURNETT: Obviously, the big fear and a very big statement from the President tonight. Barbara Starr, thank you.

Michelle Kosinski was also at the President's briefing today. And Michelle the other big news from Obama taking aim at Donald Trump. Trump has charged multiple times that this election is rigged and Obama today was calling that ridiculous.

MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: I mean, he answered him back and this came after a long chunk of time that President Obama had spent talking about ISIS and of course, that's a very somber conversation. So, when he was finally asked about Donald Trump, he loosened up a little bit, his tone almost mocking. Listen.


OBAMA: That's ridiculous. That doesn't make sense, and I don't think anybody would take that seriously.


KOSINSKI: And President Obama went on to say, you know, talking about a rigged election, Donald Trump almost, he sounds like he's already a loser saying that before he even loses the election and he said, you know, after the election, if going in he looks like he's ahead 10 or 12 points and then he loses, then he might have the right to bring up that point -- Erin.

BURNETT: And Michelle, I mean, you know, he was saying, you know, I don't know where to start answering this question. Of course, the elections will not be rigged, right? I mean, he was so angry, as you point out. He also went further and the President was also clear. He does not think Trump is fit to be president, right?

KOSINSKI: Yes. And this came up in an interesting way. In fact, it was CNN's Barbara Starr who asked him directly, can Donald Trump be trusted with America's nuclear weapons and this has been ask, of the White House many times before. Is Donald Trump trustworthy enough to have America's nuclear codes if he becomes president and listen to part of what President Obama said.


OBAMA: I obviously have a very strong opinion about the two candidates who are running. One is very positive and one is not so much. This is serious business, and the person who is in the Oval Office and who is our Secretary of Defense and our joint-chiefs-of- staff and our outstanding men and women in uniform report to -- they are counting on somebody who has the temperament and good judgment to be able to make decisions to keep America safe.


[19:05:36] KOSINSKI: Another part of that answer was when he kept referring back to what he had said two days ago when he called Donald Trump unfit to be president and woefully unprepared. So technically, he didn't really answer Barbara Starr's question, but he made his intent very clear and he even said I made myself very clear the other day -- Erin.

BURNETT: All right. Michelle, thank you very much.

And OUTFRONT now, the chair of Donald Trump's National Security Advisory Committee Senator Jeff Sessions.

And Senator, good to have you back on the program.


BURNETT: You know, you heard part of what President Obama said dismissing Trump's claims that the election is rigged. Let me just play for you a little bit more about what he said because Michelle was right, he really was mocking Donald Trump's accusations. Here is the President.


OBAMA: I don't even really know where to start on answering this question. Of course, the elections will not be rigged. If Mr. Trump is suggesting that there is a conspiracy theory that is being propagated across the country including in places like Texas where typically it's not Democrats who are in charge of voting booths, that's ridiculous and that doesn't make any sense and I don't think anybody would take that seriously. If Mr. Trump is up 10 or 15 points on Election Day and ends up losing then, you know, maybe he can raise some questions. That doesn't seem to be the case at the moment.

BURNETT: Senator, does the President have a point? That Trump is calling the election rigged only because he is losing right now after all he used to lead every single rally with a list of all the polls when he was ahead.

SESSIONS: Well, look, if it's a close election which is likely to be, and I believe will be, then we need an honest election. We haven't had an election that I know of without some proof of fraud. And then courts have struck down the idea that you have to present some sort of identification document when you go to the polls and this does increase the likelihood of fraud, but we hope we'll have a fair election. Donald Trump is a campaigner and a warrior, the numbers had him up not long ago. He's down some now, and I think you'll see a rebound, no doubt about it heading into November.

BURNETT: So you think he's going to rebound, obviously, you know, he is significantly behind in a lot of these polls, breaking poll tonight and in nine points behind some state polls, as many as 17 points behind. How do you think he's going to make up that --

SESSIONS: Let me just say that he's been behind before and he's been up before and he had a national poll up five points, and I believe that was CNN's poll, so they're up and down. I don't believe this is any kind of permanent low. I believe they have a bump on him, the election and convention and then we've had some events that have occurred and I think the press has been far too negative about and they've hit him really, really hard but he's going to come back and his message is right for the American people, Erin. He's talking about their wages, their salaries, a lawful system of immigration, trade policies that protect workers and their jobs and not closing factories. These are the things that have to be a part of this election and will be as the weeks go by.

BURNETT: And Senator Sessions, you say events that have occurred. I'm assuming one of those is obviously what has happened with the Khan family, the Gold-Star family and with the battle with his parents that Donald Trump has been engaged in. Have you told Donald Trump to knock it off, stop picking those sorts of fights?

SESSIONS: Well, I think he does understand that you have to stay focused on the main issue and the main issue is Hillary Clinton, her failed economic policies, the Obama/Clinton policies are not working, more taxes, more regulation, more debt and more borrowing, more government will never make this economy grow and her failed policies in the Middle East, goodness, as secretary of state she pulled out the troops out of Iraq, Erin. This was so bad.

We would not have ISIS in Iraq today, had we kept just a minimum number of troops in a backup role. There's just no doubt about it. So now the President is trying to struggle to take back whole swaths of Iraq where ISIS has formed a caliphate, really and needs to be defeated, has to be defeated.

[19:10:08] BURNETT: OK. Of course, back to the whole argument of it was George W. Bush's agreement to take the troops out. Obama went ahead and did it. I don't want to re-litigate all of that right now.

SESSIONS: No, we did not. Bush did not say pull the troops out of Iraq.

BURNETT: He had set a deal on what they were able to -- immunity. I don't want to get into re-litigating that right now.

SESSIONS: But we have a problem in Iraq today and with ISIS because of that colossal failed erroneous decision it's the foundation of the problems we have that there is an ISIS today.

BURNETT: I want to ask you about this issue because actually ISIS does link to something Donald Trump has been saying regarding nuclear weapons and I want to make sure I play for you what Senator -- President Obama said about Donald Trump and nuclear weapons. He made it clear he doesn't think he can handle the country's nuclear arsenal moments ago. Here's how he put it.


OBAMA: Just listen to what Mr. Trump has to say and make your own judgment with respect to how confident you feel about his ability to manage things like our nuclear triad.


BURNETT: Senator, as I said, Donald Trump has been inconsistent on this issue, at one point saying he would consider nuclear weapons. Here he is saying so in March.



You wouldn't fight back?

Would there be a time when it could be used?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. The trouble is when you said that --


BURNETT: You advised Donald Trump on this issue again, Senator. Should a could-be president be speaking that way about America's nuclear arsenal?

SESSIONS: Let me just tell you, nobody takes nuclear weapons off the table. Barack Obama doesn't and no president takes them off the table ever, but a nuclear war cannot be won. A nuclear war is a disaster. It must be avoided. There's no doubt about it.

BURNETT: But again, he said, you wouldn't fight -- somebody hits us with an ISIS, you wouldn't fight back with a nuke. You support that.

SESSIONS: He's talking about the deterrent factor that as always available to every president, and he cannot take that off the table.

BURNETT: All right. SESSIONS: He's very cautious about nuclear weapons and from my discussions with him there is no rashness with him about the use of nuclear weapons and he will be very cautious about the nuclear weapon issue.

BURNETT: All right. Well, thank you very much, Senator. I appreciate your time tonight.

SESSIONS: Thank you.

BURNETT: And OUTFRONT next, more on our breaking news. Trump says he's seen video of a plane delivering hundreds of millions of dollars in cash to Iran, but no one else seems to have seen it.

Plus, the breaking poll shows Hillary Clinton nearly doubling her lead over Trump. But Trump is showing surprising strength on another front tonight. And closing in fast on Clinton. Our report.

And then vulgar, sometimes violent people at Trump rallies caught on video. Why?


[19:15:56] BURNETT: Breaking news. President Obama denying he paid $400 million to Iran to release American hostages. In a press conference earlier tonight, the President slamming accusations that sending a plan of cash to Iran on the same day four American hostages were release was ransom.


OBAMA: We do not pay ransom for hostages. We do not pay a ransom. We didn't here and we won't in the future.


BURNETT: Jim Sciutto is OUTFRONT. And Jim, the President was clearly very angry about this and he is taking withering criticism for this.

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: He was exasperated. I mean, the first point he makes is listen, this was not a secret transfer of money. In fact, the President announced it, the White House announced it when it happened and that's true. We reported on it, as well. What is new and in this press conference was the first time you heard the President say it was that that initial transfer of what were frozen assets was in cash, a plane full of cash. Now, the President made the point that the reason that was the case was that sanctions against Iran worked and they were cut off from the International Banking System so you couldn't make a bank transfer.

But let's be honest here, Erin, I mean, his own Department of Justice was uncomfortable with the juxtaposition of those Americans including Jason Rezaian coming this direction and that plane full of cash going that direction on the same day. You know, even though they were separate negotiation tracks it happened on the same day and of course, that looked bad. And frankly, you know, the way Iran has behaved in the past, they have captured people with the intention of using them as a bargaining chips for whether it's the release of Iranians or for other concessions. So that association, that appearance of a quid- pro-quo didn't come from nowhere.

BURNETT: Yes. And you know, it's also interesting, of course, when the President was asked directly, can you say that that money did not go to terrorism which of course, Iran is the largest state sponsor of terrorism according to his administration, he pointedly did not answer that question at all. Donald Trump has been trying to seize outrage over this story. But so far not seizing on items like that, Jim, doing it in a remarkably strange way, in fact.

SCIUTTO: Very strange and arguably self-destructive way because instead of focusing on the deal, the transfer and the timing he focused instead on a video that he claims to exist showing that money going to Iran. Have a listen.


TRUMP: The tape was made, right? You saw that with the airplane coming in, nice plane and the airplane coming in, and the money coming off, I guess, right? That was given to us, has to be by the Iranians and you know why the tape was given to us? Because they want to embarrass our country. Who would ever think that they would be taking all of this money off the plane and then providing us with a tape?


SCIUTTO: The thing is none of that is true. There is no tape of this plane full of money going there. There is tape, video of the plane landing with the Americans coming this way which was broadcast. So -- and the idea that the Iranians gave it to the U.S., that's also factually untrue and even Trump's own spokesperson said that what he was referring to was just video that was broadcast on the networks at the time of this release and that was something that was known yesterday, known the day before yesterday and yet today Donald Trump repeating that line of argument.

BURNETT: All right. Jim Sciutto, thank you.

OUTFRONT now, former Reagan White House Political Director Jeffrey Lord, Donald Trump supporter. Executive chairman of the New York State Democratic Party Basil Smikle, he is a Hillary Clinton supporter. Our presidential historian and former director of the Nixon Presidential Library Timothy Naftali. And Washington Bureau Chief for the Daily Beast Jackie Kucinich.

Jeff, let me start with you. The President's on the defensive, OK?


BURNETT: He's exasperated and this doesn't look good and it looks terrible.

LORD: Right. BURNETT: Let's just be honest. You have a plane with cash going one way and hostages coming the other way within the same day and when he was asked tonight, can say that that cash did not go for terrorism? He did not answer that question. He just answered another part of the question and chose to not answer it. Yet Donald Trump is talking about a video that doesn't exist?

LORD: Well, to be perfectly candid, I saw that and that's what I thought I was seeing when I looked at it.

BURNETT: This is the video of the hostages getting off of a plane in Switzerland.

LORD: Right. But in watching it I thought --

BURNETT: This is the video, yes. Right here.

LORD: Exactly. So I mean, easy enough to mistake, but if the hostages are getting on or off they're getting on or off because the cash was sent. Let me just add one other thing. I worked in the Reagan White House during what was known as the Iran-contra scandal in which arms were traded for hostages and President Reagan said, no they weren't, no they weren't, no they weren't, there was a commission that was investigated. And finally they came to the conclusion that yes, there were. There was a major to-do about this and a massive Congressional investigation, a presidential commission, a special prosecutor. This stinks. This is even worse than that. I can't imagine that this is not a huge deal.

[19:20:48] BURNETT: Basil, what do you say? I mean, the Justice Department, as Jim pointed out, was not comfortable with this. This is the U.S. government sending cash into Iran. I went into Iran at one point when there were sanctions. It's very difficult. You are violating the law to bring American cash into Iran. The Obama administration sent $400 million of cash in.

BASIL SMIKLE, EXEC. CHAIRMAN, NEW YORK STATE DEMOCRATIC PARTY: Yes. I understood, but I don't see at all the comparison to Iran-contra, let me just clear about that. I mean, this does not meet that test at all, number one. Number two, this $400 million has been litigated for almost as long as he's been alive actually, and so -- and because the White House announced it and they announced that there was a settlement of over $1.7 billion. They announced when this money was --

BURNETT: But the money was ultimately not transferred until the day of the hostages.

SMIKLE: And it was announced. So my thing is, I just -- I don't see where it arises to Iran-contra. I don't see where this is so --

LORD: We'll work on you, Basil.

SMIKLE: I don't see that.

BURNETT: Whether it does or doesn't, Jackie, you have got Donald Trump talking about a video that isn't the right video as opposed to these issues.

JACKIE KUCINICH, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF, THE DAILY BEAST: Well, exactly. And so we've seen this time and time again, he just gets distracted by these smaller things be it the e-mails, be it this -- he has no ability to sort of take the opportunity to really attack Hillary Clinton and to attack President Obama because he's hung up on things that don't really matter or are a conspiracy theories and it hasn't really taken the initiative. That's got to frustrate you, Jeffrey and his other supporters because really, I mean, there are all these opportunities out there, and he's not seizing on them.

BURNETT: Because he added a conspiracy. Not just that he mistook the plane for hostages for the plane and cash. OK? Which Jeffrey is pointing out, he could have do. He said the Iranians provided us with this footage.

TIMOTHY NAFTALI, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: OK. A couple of thing, first of all, Jeffrey, to remind our audience, the Iran-contra scandal involved illegal activity. It involved sending two missiles which the Iranians then used against Israel. I have seen no evidence so far that any laws were broken in this transaction.

BURNETT: Except for our own sanctions.

NAFTALI: No, but it was under part of the agreement which was shared with Congress. None of this was secret. Remember, Iran-contra is about a secret --

LORD: A jet in the middle of the night or whatever. I mean, it sounds like a drug deal going down.

SMIKLE: No, no, let's not do that. Let us not associate the President of the United States with a drug deal. Let's not do that, number one. Go back to your point.

NAFTALI: Well, my point is this. And here I think Jeffrey was not being fair to Ronald Reagan because Ronald Reagan and every American president since the Islamic revolution, Republican or Democrat has had a problem with Iran and what every president has determined is that we have no military option against Iran. They're not nice. They do fund Hezbollah. Hezbollah has engaged international terrorism and Hezbollah has been difficult to our ally, Israel. Everybody agrees that Iran is a problem so they try to work the problem.

When Ronald Reagan and it was a terrible mistake in the end, but Ronald Reagan's advisers were trying to actually do a Nixon. Only Nixon could go to China. Only Reagan could go to Tehran. The whole point was to try to establish a strategic relationship. Now, Reagan focused on the hostages and ultimately it became a game and the Iranians played us. But initially, it was a complex effort to find a way around the problem of Iran. Every one of our government has had to do that, if we just focused on the drama of that late night transfer --

BURNETT: But the drama is relevant. It is relevant, right? The optics do matter. That is the reality. Optics do matter. LORD: When you are sending over $400 million in cash, in essence,

this is a big deal. It is a very big deal.

SMIKLE: But they only do it in cash because it was illegal to do it any other way.

BURNETT: Well, wait a minute. Hold on! This is a good conversation. I hit pause for only a moment because you're going to be with me on the other side of the break. Florida launching an air war with the Zika virus. We now have two babies born in California with Zika related birth defects. It is now spreading. How fast is it spreading? We're going to go to the frontlines tonight. And angry often vulgar people at Trump rallies caught on tape.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get out of here, you tag!


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get out of here!


[19:29:16] BURNETT: Breaking news. Hillary Clinton opening up a nine-point lead over Donald Trump nationally. A new poll showing Clinton ahead of Trump 43 to 34. Before the conventions, Clinton had a six-point lead in the same poll. Clinton is also opening up big leads in key swing states. New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Michigan as 17 points in New Hampshire and double digits in the others.

Jason Carroll is traveling with the Trump campaign, OUTFRONT in Portland, Maine tonight. And Jason, Trump may be down on the polls, OK? Those numbers look bad. But his rallies are still absolutely packed and you've had a chance to talk to some of the people who are there. Are they losing any enthusiasm?

JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: No. Not at all. They're not losing enthusiasm whether they be here where we saw Trump or before that in Daytona Beach or before that in Virginia or Ohio.

[19:30:02] Look, these are a dedicated group of people, no loss of enthusiasm, but there is a change. Those who came out saw a much different version of a Donald Trump. He was much more focused on the issues. There was less name calling here.

You have to wonder if a page has been turned in terms of how this candidate is going to proceed in the future. For that, we're going to have to wait and see, but in terms of what those people who came out here saw today they saw a different version of a Donald Trump and one that they liked.


MARCEE LEE WINTHROP, DONALD TRUMP SUPPORTER: I don't believe in polls. I think the polls are wrong. I highly suspect that there are so many people out there that are really involved and they come out to the rallies anyway and so, I don't think the points really make much difference.

ERIC STARBOL, DONALD TRUMP SUPPORTER: I absolutely love this man. I love that voting him in is really sticking it to the establishment. Not going to take it from them. Everybody is running scared, and I love it.


CARROLL: So, Erin, let me point to an protesters held up a pocket version of the Constitution in reference to Khizr Khan who held up his version of the Constitution during the DNC Convention asking Donald Trump if he himself had read the Constitution, and Donald Trump took that all in stride as the protesters, small group of about a half dozen were led out and talk it all in stride and moved back on to the points of attacking Hillary Clinton.

When I asked a woman about that, a woman from Massachusetts, she said he was much more presidential today. This is the version of Donald Trump we need to see going forward -- Erin.

ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: All right. Jason, thank you very much.

The panel is back with me.

The polls, Jeff, and you see the die-hard supporters they are itching for a fight, but the polls look bad, OK? The polls are bad and it's not just a poll here and a poll there, and Jeff Session says some are up and some are down. Right now at this moment in time, they are all down for Donald Trump.

JEFFREY LORD, DONALD TRUMP SUPPORTER: I speak today with the director of the Franklin/Marshall poll which is Pennsylvania.

BURNETT: That's the 13-point margin poll.

LORD: Right. I should say, and by point of disclosure, I'm a Franklin and Marshall alum here, and Dr. Terrell Madonna has said to me that absolutely Donald Trump stands a chance at winning Pennsylvania. It's August, it's early.

I certainly remember the Michael Dukakis lead of 17 points in the Gallup poll in July 1988, and I went back today, and took another look at Jimmy Carter according to the Gallup poll going to defeat Ronald Reagan by 12 or 13 points. These polls particularly at this time are irrelevant.

I mean, when we get to 48 hours before the election. That's another story.

BURNETT: The rallies, basil are packed. Look, you have that core base who are never going to change their mind no matter what, but there is something to be said when the national headlines are about chaos in the campaign in disarray and the meltdown and the GOP in civil war and the polls are terrible for Trump, but the rallies are full.

SMIKLE: Presidential campaigns are about growth and the question is where is Donald Trump growing his base of support from a primary into a general election. Look, I think the polls are great, but I don't think we're resting on our hunches at all. I think there's still a lot of work to be done. I think the convention was good. The Democratic convention is good, and exquisite in framing Donald Trump in who he is and what little he can offer to the American people.

BURNETT: Unusual use of the word exquisite.


SMIKLE: My mother was a teacher. I think it hold Hillary Clinton's story very, very well and I think that's reflected here, but there is still work to be done.

BURNETT: Jackie, come back, Jeff Sessions it can happen. Jeffrey Lord making the case.

JACKIE KUCINICH, THE WASHINGTON BUREAU, THE DAILY BEAST: Sure, it's so early. I mean, there are things that are going to happen this year --

BURNETT: Early to move polls by that significant of a margin?

KUCINICH: It really depends on how Donald Trump in particular, and if Hillary Clinton gets a little ahead of herself. I mean, they paused -- political reporters tonight, they paused ads in Virginia and Colorado already because they apparently safe there.

BURNETT: They think they've got it.

KUCINICH: Right, exactly. And so, those moves -- I mean, if they get overconfident, that's going to open up the door for Donald Trump. And that's what I think you have to be -- there are moves to be made on both sides at this point, and that's why it's still to early.

BURNETT: And, Tim, you have "The New York Times" publishing a controversial videos. It's a "New York Times" video. So, of course, Trump campaign will say it's biased because it comes from the New York Times and they say this is what they say they saw at a Trump rally. Let me play a clip.


CROWD: Build that wall! Build that wall! Build that wall!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Send them bastards back. I'm sure that paperwork comes in Spanish.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ignorance and immigrants, they mix together!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If you don't speak English and don't contribute, get out.


[19:35:00] TIM NAFTALI, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: I was in the arena in Cleveland, and there was a protester on the side and she wasn't very far from me, and they removed her and this was during Donald Trump's speech. You may have heard her.

BURNETT: Yes, I heard her.

NAFTALI: And the things that people yelled at this person were outrageous. The epithets and the nastiness and the vitriol, I heard it myself. So I've seen it, yes, now -- but let's actually back for a moment.

BURNETT: Hold on, I want to give Jeffrey a chance to respond.

LORD: I've been to two Trump rallies, I've never heard any of this, not a thing. And number two, the biggest line of applause he got when he said the media is our big problem. He didn't say anything more than that at that particular juncture, the whole place went crazy.

And they turned around unprompted by him and started pointing and fingers and yelling and pointing to the risers in the back.

BURNETT: I'm sure they're used to that line.

LORD: One last thing here is that, not to betray my age, and I certainly know that the American left are past masters of this kind of thing. Hey, hey, LBJ, how many kids did you kill today? Obscenities, et cetera, that is a standard of the American left, and the media bias here in selecting people here and there.

SMIKLE: Number one, it's 2016. Two, whatever happened then, this is 2016 right now.

LORD: It matters.

SMIKLE: Yes, they do.

LORD: They do, but shouting obscenities.

SMIKLE: The second thing I would say is this. What has Donald Trump actually done to tamp all of this down? He sort of created the forum for this.

I don't want to conflate that vitriol with what I think is real economic anxiety expressed by a lot of folks in America, and I think they need to address it in a very appropriate way. And what is Donald Trump doing to tamp this down and say there is no place for this.

BURNETT: I've got to leave it there. Thank you all.

OUTFRONT next, Donald Trump raising $80 million last month. How he did it may surprise you. This is a real bright spot for Donald Trump.

And President Obama warning of the spread of Zika. Two babies in California have been born with serious birth defects from the virus. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:41:05] BURNETT: Tonight, news of a major bright spot for Donald Trump. A lot of people are giving his campaign cash.

Phil Mattingly is OUTFRONT.


PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): New evidence that Donald Trump's fund-raising operation, once one of the campaign's biggest question marks has kicked into gear. Trump's fund-raising apparatus brought in $82 million in July, much of what Republicans have struggled to capitalize on, though $10 million behind Hillary Clinton.

STEVE MNUCHIN, TRUMP CAMPAIGN FINANCE CHAIRMAN: They've been doing this for over ten years. We've been doing it for two months. So it's pretty incredible that we're at $80 million and they're at $90 million.

MATTINGLY: Trump's campaign sources tell CNN bolstered by the expertise and infrastructure provided by an agreement with the RNC raised $30 million more dollars than the month prior, and is miles ahead of May when they finished the month with just $1.3 million in the bank.

And it comes at a crucial moment. Clinton's team has invested tens of millions in crucial states like New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, where ads like this --

AD NARRATOR: How do we make the economy work for everyone? Hillary Clinton's plan starts here.

MATTINGLY: -- are flooding the airwaves all as the latest head-to- head poll numbers in the states show Trump has serious ground to make up.

But behind Trump's big month lies a potential long-term strength: small donations.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Few Republicans can do that, maybe no Republican can do that.

MATTINGLY: Echoing the grassroots success that drove Bernie Sanders to raise $226 million in his primary.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I), VERMONT: Anyone know what the average campaign contribution is? $27.

MATTINGLY: For Trump, access to big small dollar cash is a must, big donors simply are not flocking his way. He raised only $16 million in events in July. Trump now deploying his kids to help boost that effort.

Still, it's a stark difference for how 2012 nominee Mitt Romney ran his operation, a financial juggernaut that raised nearly $100 million over the same period in 2012.

There's another key difference. How Trump is spending. As Clinton dumps millions of dollars into TV ad campaigns, Trump's team is looking elsewhere. At this point, deciding (AUDIO GAP) television ads.


MATTINGLY: And, Erin, while those big fund-raising numbers certainly were a big boost for their campaign, the focus on the resource of the ground operation really underscores a reality for Trump's team. They are far behind when it comes to key pieces of campaign infrastructure. There are areas where the Clinton campaign has been spending tens of millions for months and in some cases for more than a year.

The Trump campaign simply has rpt matched that effort at least up until now. Now they're trying to.

The big question when you talk to Republican officials, is it too late? Erin?

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Phil.

And OUTFRONT now, Republican congressman from Tennessee, Marsha Blackburn, a Donald Trump supporter.

Congresswoman, good to have you with me.


BURNETT: One of the polls that President Obama came out and slammed Donald Trump making it clear that Trump doesn't have the temperament in his words to keep America safe, and it comes as a poll shows the president's approval rating is 54 percent.

So, when you look at that, only Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton were as popular. President Obama is coming out almost every day and he' going to go on vacation, but almost every day coming out and slamming Donald Trump. Does that worry you that that's going to influence independent voters?

BLACKBURN: I don't think it's going to have that much impact on independent voters. I think, Erin, one of the things we've seen this election cycle is that a lot of endorsements really don't matter. People are relying on their friends. I like to say the YOU, you and your network of friends.

[19:45:03] That is the most powerful news network for individuals right now, and we are really hearing a lot about that. I find it so very interesting. Social media, Facebook, Twitter, people getting their news from other sources, going to blogs, going to websites and they're relying less on the traditional outlets.

BURNETT: So, the House speaker, Paul Ryan, has endorsed Donald Trump, of course, as you're well aware, but he warned today in an interview that that could change. Here is exactly how he put it.


REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: None of these things are ever a blank checks, that goes with any situation in any kind of race.


BURNETT: Is your support of Donald Trump a blank check?

BLACKBURN: There is nothing that is blank check. When I support someone, it is something that's very important to me. When I arrive at how I'm going to handle that endorsement I will say this, I think it's very important for us as Republicans to realize that old wisdom that many times we have heard, when you start trying to make a race about personalities, you lose. When you focus it on the people and on policies, good government policies, that's when you win, and it's true every time, Erin.

BURNETT: And let me just ask you in the past few days, the Jeb Bush adviser and top adviser, top adviser for Governor Chris Christie saying she's going to vote for Hillary Clinton, former gubernatorial candidate for governor of California, Meg Whitman, she's going to vote for Hillary Clinton.

This is pretty stunning. Would you ever consider -- is there anything he could do when you say he doesn't have a blank check from you, anything that would make you make that choice?

BLACKBURN: I -- I think that what you're going to see is people will come out and they're going to say they're going to vote for one or another, and then they may soften or they may change on that.

I think the important thing is to keep the focus on what someone is going to do if they are elected president. The federal bench of the Supreme Court, we know what Donald Trump is going to do and the type of people he is going to appoint.

Rolling back some of the regulation and the overreach of federal agencies, we know what Donald Trump is going to do.

Also, we know what Hillary Clinton is going to do and because of what she has done. She feels like government is the solution. Donald Trump believes that the people of this country are the solution to the problems that we have and I don't know about you, I believe in the people of the country.

BURNETT: All right. Well, thank you very much.

BLACKBURN: Good to be with you.

BURNETT: I appreciate you being with me as always, Congresswoman Blackburn.

BLACKBURN: Absolutely. BURNETT: OUTFRONT next, the fight against Zika turning into an air war in Florida. Two babies we have now found out tonight born with defects in California from Zika, a special report tonight.

And on a lighter note, Jeanne Moos with a new look at Donald Trump's hands. We actually can tell you how they measure up.


[19:51:37] BURNETT: Breaking news: two babies in California have been born with Zika-related birth defects and this as aerials sprang to fight the Zika mosquitoes started for the first time today in Miami.

Dan Simon is OUTFRONT.


DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Like flame retardant on a raging wildfire, authorities hope planes dumping this insecticide will help wipe out Zika-infected mosquitoes. The aerial missions over Miami will continue for the next several weeks. Authorities say the chemicals designed to kill the mosquitoes are safe for humans, but advise people with allergies to stay indoors during the early morning.

DR. TOM FRIEDEN, CDC DIRECTOR: The type of droplet use side a very, very small droplet that wafts through the air and stays in the air for a longer period of time that has a better kill of the adult mosquitoes.

SIMON: The CDC says the early results seem promising and they've been able to reduce the Zika danger zone by ten blocks. This is the neighborhood considered to be ground zero for the virus in Miami, Wynwood, an art district filled with shops, galleries and restaurants.

Despite 15 cases of Zika, tourists are still coming, but armed with cans of bug spray. Out. Outdoor patios are empty as people try to protect themselves.

CAREY FULLOVE, 31 WEEKS PREGNANT: I've been wearing long sleeves. I've been wearing leggings to my ankles and I've been putting bugs spray on my feet and my arms, just extra safe.

SIMON: Carey Fullove is at her doctor's office for a routine pregnancy exam.

FULLOVE: I'm doing great. Awesome.

SIMON: Now, in her third trimester, the virus has become a constant worry for both her and her husband. Her doctor says the office has been inundated with calls and e-mails from nervous patients.

DR. LAUREN ABERN, UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI HEALTH SYSTEM: It's not even those that are pregnant. I've had patients e-mail that are not pregnant because they want to try to get pregnant or will it affect them down the road when they try to get pregnant or will it affect them down when they want to try to get pregnant. SIMON: Melanie Fernandez who was 20 weeks pregnant says she would

leave Miami right now if she could.

MELANIE FERNANDEZ, 20 WEEKS PREGNANT: All I can do now is be on the defensive everywhere I go. I can't move because I have a business here, and we have a life here.

SIMON: Which is why state and city officials say they're doing everything they can, but that it's a collective effort.

FRIEDEN: This mosquito can breed in a bottle cap. So you have to get rid of any container that can hold standing water, a coffee cup, a paint can, becomet for collecting rain water.


SIMON: Well, today, both President Obama and Florida Governor Rick Scott talked about the urgent need for Zika funding. The president now saying that the situation is critical especially as it relates to a Zika vaccine which the scientific community now believes is in reach.

Erin, of course, it's no secret that the White House and Congress are in a partisan war over this funding. Back to you.

BURNETT: Of course. Thank you very much.

And next, Jeanne Moos settling an old argument about Donald Trump's hands.


[19:57:54] BURNETT: And tonight, finally the truth about Donald Trump's hands.

Jeanne Moos with the report.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Remember when Donald Trump would ask --

TRUMP: Look at those hands. Are they small hands?

They're not small, are they?

MOOS: Yes, and here's the proof. A bronze cast of the Donald's right hand has been hiding in plain sight inside of Madam Tussaud's wax museum in New York City, but before we get to the stats, a quick recap.

You'll recall Trump had a nickname for Rubio.

TRUMP: I called him Little Marco, Little Marco.

MOOS: And then Rubio counterattacked. SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: Have you seen his hands? They're like

this, and you know what they say about men with small hands. You can't trust him.

MOOS: The mockery led the Donald to bring out the big gun.

TRUMP: He referred to my hands if they're small, something else must be small. I guarantee you, there's no problem. I guarantee you.

MOOS: Well, at least now, we can guarantee the size of the Donald's hands. The "Hollywood Reporter" found a bronze one just steps away from Andy Warhol at Madam Tussauds, and it was cast while making a wax version of young Trump which has since been removed because it's out dated, but the hand remains begging for comparison.

This guy's was bigger.

Wow. How old are you?


MOOS: The "Hollywood Reporter" measured the Donald's hand at 7 1/4 inches. The average American male's is usually cited as 7.44 inches, making Trump's smaller, despite his 6'3" size. The "Hollywood Reporter" even made a PDF copy of the candidate's hand for people to printout. Entitled, do you measure up to Trump?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm large to medium.

MOOS: Most men were bigger. As for the women?

So, you have same size.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But my brain is much bigger.

MOOS: Now that the size is definitive, can we all stop pointing fingers at the Donald's hands?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is that because your little fingers can't reach all of the letters on the keypad?

MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.


BURNETT: And thank you all so much for joining us. We'll see you back here, same place tomorrow night. Have a good night.

"AC360" with Anderson begins right now.