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Trump's Evolving Immigration Stance on Immigration; Clinton Slams AP Story About Her Foundation; Rescue Efforts After Italian Quake Continues; Syrian Rebels Clear ISIS from Border Town. Aired 4:30-5a ET

Aired August 25, 2016 - 04:30   ET


[04:30:01] JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: She has spoken about the new e- mails that might be released. The revelations about the Clinton Foundation. Also her response to Donald Trump overnight calling her a bigot.

Welcome back to EARLY START, everyone. I'm John Berman.

ROMANS: Just a few things happened overnight.

BERMAN: Just a few things.

ROMANS: Just a few things. I'm Christine Romans. It's 30 minutes past the hour.

So let's start with this morning and Donald Trump with his radical new position on immigration to go with the new line of attack against Hillary Clinton. In a few hours he meets with minority leaders. But last night Trump suggested to FOX News that he would allow some undocumented immigrants to stay in the U.S.

Why does this matter? For more than a year since his announcement that he would be candidate, Trump has made clear that all 11 million undocumented immigrants, all of them, every one of them, all of them had to go. Even if it took a deportation force. Not anymore.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: They'll pay back taxes. They have to pay taxes. There's no amnesty. There's no amnesty.


TRUMP: But we work with them. And I've had very strong people come up to me. Really great, great people come up to me and they've said, Mr. Trump, I love you, but to take a person that's been here for 15 or 20 years and throw them and the family out, it's so tough -- I mean, I've had -- I have it all the time. It's a very, very hard thing.


ROMANS: So this new policy seems very like the policies laid out by Jeb Bush and John Kasich in the primaries. Remember, Donald Trump beat them. He ridiculed them on their immigration policies. Trump's new positions are hard to pin down. Let's be clear. He was

not pressed last night about exactly what this would look like. But he does give an immigration speech next week. I was a speech that was Initially planned for today. They took a little more time. Next week, he will have to flush all of this out.

Now in addition to all of that, Donald Trump held a rally in the red state of Mississippi last night. And he hurled a surprising new charge at Hillary Clinton.

CNN's Jim Acosta has the latest.

JIM ACOSTA, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: John and Christine, Donald Trump has come up with a new super charged line of attack for Hillary Clinton. At a rally here in Jackson, Mississippi, Trump called Clinton a, quote, "bigot." That goes much further than where he's been over the last several days during which he said that Clinton did not care about the concerns of African-American and Hispanic voters. Here is more of what he had to say at this rally.


TRUMP: Hillary Clinton is a bigot who sees people of color -- only as votes, not as human beings worthy of a better future. She's going to do nothing for African-Americans. She's going to do nothing for the Hispanics. She's only going to take care of herself, her husband, her consultants, her donors. These are the people she cares about. She doesn't care what her policies have done to your communities.


ACOSTA: Trump also previewed this upcoming shift on the issue of immigration reform telling the crowd at this rally that his upcoming immigration policy will not adversely affect American jobs. But he did tell Fox News in an interview that he will allow the undocumented to stay in this country if they have not broken the law -- John and Christine.

BERMAN: All right, Jim Acosta in Mississippi.

Now Hillary Clinton has a highly anticipated speech in Nevada today. The secretary will try to tie Donald Trump to the so-called alt-right political movement. This is what her campaign describes as the dystopian mix of nationalism, racism and conspiracy theories. This comes after a series of questions have emerged about alleged overlap between the Clinton Foundation donors and the State Department.

Overnight, Hillary Clinton gave her first interview on that subject. This one exclusive with Anderson Cooper. And she also talked about her speech today.


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Donald Trump called you a bigot. He'd been calling your policies bigoted. Tonight he actually called you a bigot. How do you respond to that? HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Donald Trump has shown

us who he is, and we ought to believe him. He is a taking a hate movement mainstream. He's brought it into his campaign. He is bringing it to our communities and our country. He's someone who is, you know, very much peddling bigotry and prejudice and paranoia.

COOPER: Donald Trump is now indicating he would allow some illegal immigrants to remain in the country. What do you make of what appears to be quite a big shift by him on this if this in fact is his policy moving forward?

CLINTON: He is trying to do kind of a shuffle here. But I think we need to look at the entire context. We need to believe him when he bullies and threatens to throw out every immigrant in the country. And certainly changes his position three times in one day, it sends a message that it's just a desperate effort to try to land somewhere that isn't as, you know, devastating to his campaign as his comments and his positions have been up until now.

[04:35:07] COOPER: According to "The New York Times" report, you told FBI investigators that former Secretary of State Colin Powell advised you to use a personal e-mail account. His response to that this past weekend was reportedly, quote, "her people are trying to pin it on me," and I quote, "The truth is she was using," I'm talking about the private e-mail server, "for a year before I sent her a memo telling her what I did." He's talking about the private e-mail account.

Did you say that to FBI investigators and is Secretary Powell right? Were you using this private e-mail server prior to your conversation with him?

CLINTON: I have been asked many, many questions in the past year about e-mails. And what I've learned is that when I try to explain what happened it can sound like I'm trying to excuse what I did. And there are no excuses. I want people to know that the decision to have a single e-mail account was mine. I take responsibility for it. I've apologized for it. I would certainly do differently if I could. But obviously I'm grateful the Justice Department concluded there was no basis to pursue this matter further.

COOPER: He said today, quote, "sold favors and access in exchange for cash from people who donated to the Clinton Foundation." There is an appearance of a conflict of interest for the foundation. You've agreed to make changes if you're elected. Why not just make those changes now? Have your husband step away from the foundation now?

CLINTON: Well, first, what Trump has said is ridiculous. My work as secretary of state was not influenced by any outside forces. I know there's a lot of smoke and there's no fire. Those AP reports, let's put it in context. It excludes nearly 2,000 meetings I had with world leaders, with countless other meetings with U.S. government officials when I was secretary of state. It looked at a small portion of my time. And it drew the conclusion and made the suggestion that my meetings with people like the late, Elie Wiesel or Melinda Gates or the Nobel Prize winner Muhammad Yunus were somehow due to connections with the foundation instead of their status as highly respected global leaders. That is absurd.


ROMANS: And that has been their line for the past couple of days. Ticking through some of these people that she met with that are on this list. You know, that they are calling pay-t-play, and you know. The other thing here is about the fact that she hasn't had a press conference. You know, and Anderson did press her on that. And she said stay tuned, but that is something that both of these candidates, and Brian Stelter, our media guy wrote a great piece yesterday about both of them can be allergic to questioning, you know, open questioning in a press conference format.

BERMAN: You know, Donald Trump who has done press conferences, or many of them in the past, you know, he hasn't done an interview with anyone but FOX, really, for a while right now. He sits down with Sean Hannity for a two-hour interview, no one asked him specifically about his immigration plan.

ROMANS: Right.

BERMAN: Hillary Clinton doesn't do a full press conference really for more than a year right now. Obviously we are the press. We want it all and we would like it all. And these candidates should answer a lot of questions.

ROMANS: We want it now. Now.

All right. Time for an EARLY START on your money. New data out this morning shows parents are doing a much better job saving for college. Yes. But they are still falling short of banking the entire cost. Fidelity's annual college savings study reveals 72 percent of families are saving for college. That is a huge jump, John Berman, from the 52 percent back in 2007, which is the first year of the study.

BERMAN: That's good.

ROMANS: The percentage of parents using tax advantage 529 plans also rising.

BERMAN: Big fan of those.

ROMANS: I know. We both really love those. Now 42 percent. How much are families saving? Well, the median amount has doubled since 2007. Now $3,000 a year.

BERMAN: That's a lot. That's great.

ROMANS: Parents are terrified. I mean, they look around them. They know that they've got to give their kid a leg up. But they are kind of falling short here.

BERMAN: $3,000 will pay for roughly a week and a half of college.

ROMANS: Yes. It'll really just 29 percent of their college funding goal by the time their child heads off to campus. So think about that. Fidelity says families should start saving earlier and treat the savings account like a bill contributing a steady amount each month, which is what I do, which is what you do.

BERMAN: The important thing is to think about it and to start early.


BERMAN: Ignoring it doesn't make it better.

ROMANS: The earlier the better. That's absolutely right.

BERMAN: All right. Tremors still being felt overnight in Italy. We have new developments following the earthquake there. The rescue crews still out in force. We'll give you an update next.


[04:43:30] BERMAN: New developments in the rising death toll from the earthquake in Italy. At least 247 people have died. Aftershocks still felt in central Italy. It was a 6.2 magnitude quake. It struck really early in the morning, collapsing buildings, leaving small mountain towns, you can just see, in ruins right there. Rescuers are searching still for signs of life in that rubble. Most of what they have found so far is grim, but there are also some remarkable stories of survival.

I want to bring in CNN contributor Barbie Nadeau who is live in Saletta, Italy, right now. Barbie, give us a sense of what's happening on the ground right now.

BARBIE NADEAU, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, you know, what we're seeing in terms of a difference between yesterday which was just a panic by everyone available to try to dig out of the rubble using their hands, using whatever they could find around them. Today we're seeing a lot of order. We're seeing a lot of authorities here. Over 5,000 now in the area from all over Italy, from all sorts of different arms of the civil protection, of the army, of fire brigade. They've all come here to help. And that order has made a huge difference for the survivors. It's made a huge difference for those who lost loved ones, as well. This is especially important.

If you look behind me in this tiny little enclave, 22 people alone died in the rubble here. This morning we actually saw them take out what they believe to be the last known body. It was a woman whose son has been holding vigil really at the rubble, the wreckage of his mother's house. When they found that body and took it out, all you could really hear was just his agony and his pain. They took that body out.

[04:45:07] Now this area, they believe, there are no more known victims. But 22 is a lot for just this small area behind me. But we're seeing this repeated all over in these little enclaves around the epicenter. We're about a mile from the epicenter where we're standing right now. And everywhere you go, it's just destruction and rubble. And you see right now, though, a lot of civil protection people, a lot of people in uniform, a lot more order to the chaos. There's just food, there's water. Yesterday we didn't not see any of that. So at least things are moving in that direction. People feel things are a little bit under control and no matter sort of chaos personally they're answering the issue right now.

BERMAN: Barbie Nadeau for us in Saletta, Italy. We can see the picture of that building behind you right, and there so many others just like that throughout that region right now.

Barbie, thanks so much.

ROMANS: All right. New developments in the battle against ISIS. Syrian rebels have captured the last major ISIS held town along the border between Syria and Turkey. It's the city of Jarabulus. The move effectively cuts off the ISIS headquarters city of Raqqa from the outside world. The rebels dislodged ISIS fighters with a major assist from Turkey which provided artillery fire, tanks and air support. This on the same day Vice President Joe Biden met in the Turkish capital, the country's president.

Senior international correspondent Ben Wedeman has the latest for us.

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: John and Christine, Syrian rebel forces are now in full control of the town of Jarabulus just on the other side of the Turkish-Syrian border. The operation didn't take much more than 24 hours. And apparently ISIS fighters, for the most part, left the city without a fight. Only one rebel fighter was killed, three wounded. Now this was an operation that was supported by Turkey. F-16s from Turkey were hitting ISIS targets. And Turkish tanks, for the first time since the beginning of the Syrian uprising, entered the city. The operation was also supported by U.S. aircraft.

Now the Americans stressed their role in this operation and of course at the moment, the U.S. is eager to repair relations with Ankara after the rift that developed following the July 15th attempted coup against the government here. The Turks still want the United States to hand over to them Fethullah Gulen, that exiled Turkish cleric who's been in the U.S. since 1999. Accused by the Turkish government of masterminding the coup.

The vice president didn't make any commitments to hand him over but promised that the United States would cooperate in the effort to bring those involved in the coup to justice -- John, Christine.

BERMAN: Ben Wedeman, thanks so much.

Fifteen people, including at least seven students are dead in a siege at the American University in Kabul. A gunman stormed the campus, opening fire. They set of explosives. They sent students and staff into hiding for hours. Kabul police said the rampage ended when two attackers were killed in an operation. The third attacker killed when he detonated his explosive-laden car. 30 students were injured in the siege. Two professors, an American and Australian, were abducted from the same university earlier this month. Their whereabouts remain unknown.

ROMANS: Investigators took a step back yesterday as they wait for word from one of the most powerful people in the word.

BERMAN: Beside you.

ROMANS: Yes. Fed chief Janet Yellen. Investors are obsessed with this woman and what is she going to say this week about interest rates We get an EARLY START on your money next.


[04:53:00] BERMAN: At least 20 people were injured in a cluster of storms tearing across Indiana. Want to show you a look right now. And you can see that twister off in the distance there. Those are the sirens, the tornado sirens warning of danger.

All right. Houses were flattened in Kokomo. Some of the homes there just completely destroyed. To the east of Kokomo, a funnel cloud touched down. You can see pictures right there. And west of Indianapolis, there was another tornado. A lot of activity on the ground. Smashed buildings and homes in Montgomery County. Fortunately no deaths reported in the storms. And those who were injured are expected to make full recoveries.

There are more thunderstorms in the forecast for Indiana today. Let's get to meteorologist Derek Van Dam for the latest.



ROMANS: All right, Derek. Thanks for that.

The Orlando hospitals that treated dozens of people injured in the Pulse nightclub shooting back in June say they will not bill survivors for medical services. Officials at the Orlando Regional Medical Center where most of the victims were taken say that the total unreimbursed costs could exceed $5 million.

[04:55:09] They plan to seek payment from other sources including insurance and a victims' fund set up by the city.

BERMAN: Black box recording from the doomed El Faro cargo ship are shedding light on the crew's final hours. NTSB investigators are now analyzing some 26 hours of information from the voyage data recorder which was pulled from the ocean floor back in April. This includes audio from the bridge along with weather and navigational data. The El Faro sank last October during Hurricane Joaquin. It killed all 33 on board.

ROMANS: Goal keeper Hope Solo has been suspended from the U.S. women's soccer team for six months for what officials say were unacceptable comments at the Rio Olympics after Sweden eliminated the U.S. Solo called the Swedish team, quote, "a bunch of cowards."

Her suspension now applied to the national team. She can still play professionally for the Seattle reign in the National Women's Soccer League. BERMAN: She was mad when they lost.


BERMAN: But they did lose.

ROMANS: But many people say it was the sore loser.

BERMAN: You could say that when you probably called the other team cowards.

All right. Astronomers have discovered an earth-sized potentially habitable planet orbiting the closest star to the sun. This is according to the European Space Observatory. It has a temperature suitable for water to exist on its surface. And they dubbed the new planet Proxima B. It's a very catchy name. Proxima B. So it's more than four light years away from the United States which is close in cosmic terms. But, you know, longer than a shuttle flight. It's not like the Acella (PH).

ROMANS: It's close. It's close .


ROMANS: All right. 36 minutes past the hour. Let's get an EARLY START on your money. Record high on hold until Janet Yellen speaks. That's the message that the stock market is sending this morning. Dow futures slightly lower. There's a drop yesterday. Lowest in the past few weeks. Stock markets in Europe are down. Shares in Asia are down. Oil is up.

Why is the market so obsessed with Federal Reserve chairman Janet Yellen? Why are they so obsessed with this woman and what she's going to say at a meeting with Fed officials in Wyoming? It's because look, they have -- many Fed officials have said lately over the past few days the U.S. economy is almost ready for an interest rate hike. And investors want to see what Yellen will or will not say about those plans. A framework, a timeline. Wouldn't that be? The next Fed meeting is in September.

The U.S. Treasury Department issuing strong words to the European Union over tax probes of U.S. companies including Apple and Starbucks and Amazon. Officials say the EU levels hefty fines, U.S. taxpayer could indirectly pay for it. A Treasury Department posts this, quote, "These investigations have major implications for the United States, in particularly recoveries imposed by the commission would have an outsized impact on U.S. companies.

Apple is accused of avoiding EU taxes by making a deal with the Irish government. That case is expected to be ruled on next month. If Apple loses, it could have to pay billions -- billions in back taxes. Amazon and Starbucks also under investigation for similar tax strategies. The Treasury Department says if the tax probes result in hefty penalties, it would allow U.S. companies to claim foreign tax credits for those payments. That could reduce the amount of U.S. tax the companies pay, leaving taxpayers to make up for the shortfall. Treasury says President Obama has proposed a robust tax reform plan that addresses this issue but Congress has failed to enact it.

BERMAN: Yes. I don't think it's going to happen between now and the end of the year.

ROMANS: No, it won't.

BERMAN: That's my bet.

EARLY START continues right now.

Donald Trump suggesting another big shift in his immigration policy. Reversing -- reversing one of the big trademarks of his campaign. It comes as he unveils a new line of attacks against Hillary Clinton. We'll show you what she said.

BERMAN: Hillary Clinton in an exclusive interview with CNN. She went on to defend herself from a new line of Donald Trump attacks. Also to respond to new revelations, new releases from her e-mails and new questions about the Clinton Foundation.

Good morning, everyone. Welcome to EARLY START. I'm John Berman.

ROMANS: And I'm Christine Romans. It is Thursday, August 25th. It is 5:00 a.m. in the East. This morning Donald Trump seems to have a radically new position on immigration to go with a new line of attack against Hillary Clinton. In a few hours he meets with minority leaders. But last night, Trump suggested to FOX News he would allow some undocumented immigrants to stay in the U.S.

Why does this matter? For more than a year since he announced his candidacy, Trump has made it clear, crystal clear, that all 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States, all of them, had to go. To huge applause on the stump. Even if it took a deportation force. To huge applause from his supporters. Not anymore.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: They'll pay back taxes. They have to pay taxes. There's no amnesty. There's no amnesty.


TRUMP: But we work with them. And I've had very strong people come up to me. Really great, great people come up to me and they've said, Mr. Trump, I love you, but to take a person that's been here for 15 or 20 years and throw them and the family out, it's so tough -- I mean, I've had -- I have it all the time.