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EARLY START

Trump Meets Today With Mexican President; Donald Trump, Jr. Previews Immigration Speech; ISIS Says Top Leader Mohammad al- AdnaniKilled In Airstrike In Syria; Tropic Thunder To Hit Florida & Hawaii; Apple's $14.6B Tax Bill; Consumer Confidence Hits 1-Year High. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired August 31, 2016 - 05:30   ET

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


[05:30:00] CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: After more than a year of mocking Mexican immigrants, Donald Trump will meet with Mexico's president just hours ahead of his highly anticipated immigration speech.

GEORGE HOWELL, CNN ANCHOR: ISIS vowing revenge for the death of one of its most important leaders. How this notorious terrorist was struck down. Good morning and welcome back to EARLY START, I'm George Howell.

ROMANS: Nice to see you today, George. I'm Christine Romans. It's 30 minutes past the hour on the last day of August. Breaking overnight, Donald Trump announcing he will meet today with the president of Mexico. That surprise meeting will happen just hours before Trump delivers that big immigration speech tonight to lay out details of his immigration policy -- real details.

A sit-down between Trump and President Enrique Pena Nieto is surprising, to say the least, given Trump's repeated vows to wall off Mexico -- to wall off the Mexican border and make Mexico pay for it. Last month, Pena Nieto told CNN there is no chance Mexico will pay.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ENRIQUE PENA NIETO, PRESIDENT OF MEXICO: There is no way to have Mexico pay the wall but any decisions inside the United States is a decision of its government.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But under no circumstances would Mexico pay for that wall?

NIETO: There is no way that Mexico can pay a wall like that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: Trump has also drawn fierce attacks in Mexico and in the wider Hispanic community for his sometimes heated rhetoric against illegal immigration. CNN's Phil Mattingly is traveling with the Trump campaign. He's got the latest for us.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, George and Christine. We knew there was going to be an important speech, an important moment in Donald Trump's campaign on Wednesday, we just didn't know it would involve a visit to Mexico.

Now, Donald Trump's immigration speech scheduled for Wednesday in Arizona is still on. What was unexpected was his visit to Mexico to meet with Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto. The president's office saying they extended invitations to both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump and the meeting will be private.

Donald Trump also has that speech, as well, where we have all been waiting for the specific details of that immigration policy. In Everett, Washington on Tuesday night he mentioned the stakes for that speech.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: There is no better evidence of the fact that Hillary Clinton's immigration policy, which brings in illegal immigrants and -- well, is that a true statement. It brings in illegal immigrants and refugees to take jobs from our hardworking African-American and Hispanic citizens, and they want those jobs.

Instead of providing free health care and jobs to millions of refugees from around the world, that we have no idea even where they come from, we should rebuild our inner cities and provide jobs to struggling Americans that have been struggling for years and years.

MATTINGLY: Now there are still a lot of logistical issues to figure out for Donald Trump's trip, no question about it. The Secret Service being pushed hard to figure this out in such a short period of time. And I'm told inside Trump's team there's concern about this idea.

A lot of unknown variables when you're meeting with a world leader but, that said, those supporting this idea, including Donald Trump, making very clear this is the type of moment -- a big, bold moment -- a big, bold statement that they believe should help him show that he is ready to operate at the highest points of the world's stage. Certainly an unexpected twist, though -- guys.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HOWELL: Phil Mattingly, thank you. So let's talk more about Trump's very big day with "CNN POLITICS" digital managing editor Zach Wolf, live for us in Washington this morning. Zach, good morning.

So, before Donald Trump makes this very important speech on immigration he will meet with the president of Mexico. They will talk about a topic that -- gosh, wouldn't you just love to be a fly on the wall when this topic comes up about the wall that Mexico, as Trump says, will pay for. Let's listen to Donald Trump talking to our own Anderson Cooper about that wall.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We are going to build a great wall. The wall is going to be paid for by Mexico. People are not going to be able to tunnel because we're going to have tunnel technology. We're going to have all sorts of things on this but there's going to be a real wall. We're going to have a strong border, we're going to have a tremendous wall. We're going to have a wall that Mexico pays for, which will be very easy because they are making a fortune with us. The wall is peanuts compared to the money that they make.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOWELL: So that is Trump's political line. Does that line change at all when he is face-to-face with the president of Mexico? And if it were to change how would that affect his base?

ZACHARY WOLF, MANAGING EDITOR, "CNN POLITICS DIGITAL": You think maybe he won't put it quite that way when he's sitting across from the president of Mexico but --

HOWELL: Who knows, though?

WOLF: It's a private meeting, yes. Who knows what he'll say. It's hard to imagine these two men emerging from this meeting with some sort of agreement. They're not negotiating something. It's hard to imagine the Mexican president emerging and saying oh yes, I will pay for the wall after all.

[05:35:00] So there is, I think, a lot of risk here for Donald Trump. He can't, you know -- he can't -- the one good thing, I think, for him is that he can go down and meet with the president of Mexico and seem, I guess, presidential. Fly to a foreign country, meet with somebody with whom he has disagreements, and sort of give this air of I'm ready for this.

Afterwards,I think, you know -- they don't control what the Mexican government is going to say or do, so it's -- we'll see what happens. It's not unlike his immigration plan which has seemed to be -- changing and evolving the campaign strategy here by going down to Mexico so quickly is just so interesting and incredible, really.

ROMANS: For those of you who haven't devoured your "Wall Street Journal" this morning there's a really interesting opinion piece in the Op-Ed section basically saying Trump's immigration shift is a winner and here's why. "Older whites cheering for walls and deportation don't represent most of the GOP, let alone the country."

And the ambiguity that Donald Trump has been sowing about his actual policies is really to show other people, the majority, that hey, I'm not really going to do some of those things that I was saying I was going to do. But, Donald Trump, Jr. -- Donald Trump's son -- the candidate's son -- telling Anderson last night that no, his father is not softening on immigration -- listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, JR., EVP, THE TRUMP ORGANIZATION: He wasn't softening on anything. He didn't change his stance on anything. What he did was, and what he's done all along is, he's speaking with the people. He's not lecturing them like most of the politicians you see today, he's actually having a conversation. He basically surveyed the room and asked hey, what are your thoughts on this? I want to take that because I want to take into account what the people say.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMANS: He went on to say, Zach, that he wanted to E-Verify, the want to deport felons, they want to do a whole bunch of stuff that actually is being done right now. There are some groups who've called President Obama the deporter in chief because he's -- in the most recent year he had a quarter of a million removals and I think 60 percent of those were criminal aliens.

WOLF: Yes, this is one of the things where Trump has built his entire campaign around this pledge for a wall and immigration reform, it's bigger than just the border. There are all these people living here, undocumented immigrants --

ROMANS: Right.

WOLF: -- 11 million of them. It's not like you can just send them over the border overnight. He acknowledged that and -- Trump acknowledged that in that same interview with Anderson Cooper. So while he's saying everybody has to go home, the timeline on that gets a little squishy. The details of this are very important and key. And when you build your campaign around such a simple pledge, the details kind of -- they have a tendency to be harder to figure out.

HOWELL: Donald Trump's message to African-Americans -- and the quote has been "what the hell do you have to lose with a vote for Trump". Maybe turning that, what does he have to gain when it comes to not only that outreach but, also, what does he have to gain by going to Mexico? Could he, in fact, turn the tide with people who may have question? May have had a hard time considering voting for Trump?

WOLF: That's true, and he's giving another speech later in the week in Detroit where's he supposed to court the African-American vote. It was interesting in the clip you played earlier. He said, specifically, the undocumented immigrants who are coming here and taking jobs, he said, from African-Americans.

So it's all part of this change in tone, I guess, if not to woo in minority voters, which I find it hard to believe that he will be able to do that, maybe to make more moderate white voters feel a little bit more OK about supporting him.

HOWELL: It is interesting to point out, even in Everett, Washington when you look back there at the crowd that, again --

ROMANS: Yes.

HOWELL: -- he's speaking to a crowd, there are no African-Americans in the audience, from what you can see behind him. And, you know, I worked Seattle. There's not a high population of African-Americans. But Donald Trump is said to meet later with some African-American groups. ROMANS: That's a really good point, too, because when you look at that crowd and where he was in the venue. Also, those are people who are building airplanes --

HOWELL: Yes.

ROMANS: -- for Asian companies -- Asian airlines. You know, TPP -- he's against TPP but they are selling planes, the country is, that would benefit and be able to buy more planes, one would think, because of trade deals. All right, so nice to see you. Thanks, Zach.

HOWELL: Zach, thank you.

WOLF: Thank you.

ROMANS: All right, 39 minutes past the hour. Donald Trump says the U.S. is losing to Mexico but the two countries are very close -- very close trade partners. Mexico is the third largest trading partner for the U.S. Exports to Mexico, $267 billion last year. Imports, $316 billion.

Now that means it's a trade deficit but it doesn't mean that the U.S. is the loser. It means the country -- the U.S. -- is buying more from Mexico than it's selling to Mexico, though it does factor into GDP. When you have a huge trade deficit it can take a little bit off of GDP but it also creates jobs.

[05:40:00] The top products going back and forth are machinery, vehicles, oil, gas, plastics, ag products. Mexico is the second largest supplier of ag products to the U.S. The top categories are fresh vegetables and fruit, at more than $4 billion each -- wine, beer, snack foods.

These trade channels were opened up by NAFTA, something Trump has spoken out against, with hundreds of billions of dollars trading hands each year. Trump will likely be speaking about his trade plans, of course, with the Mexican president.

And the P.R. offensive from U.S.-Mexico trade associations is at 6 million American jobs today. Six million depend on trade with Mexico.

HOWELL: Wow. We're following a story about a top terrorist who was killed in an airstrike. The significant blow against ISIS and that groups vow to have revenge, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ROMANS: Welcome back, it's 44 minutes past the hour. ISIS is vowing revenge for the killing of its top deputy, Mohammad al-Adnani in Syria. Adnani was the terror group's official spokesman. He was the chief strategist who repeatedly called for attacks on the West. Coalition forces have not confirmed his death but the Pentagon says Adnani was targeted in a precision strike near the Syria-Turkey border.

[05:45:00] I want to bring in CNN terrorism analyst, Paul Cruickshank, he's in London. And Paul, you say this is incredibly a game changer, what his death means for the war on ISIS.

PAUL CRUICKSHANK, CNN TERRORISM ANALYST, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, "CTC SENTINEL": It's a -- it's a huge breakthrough, Christine. He was a critical member of ISIS' leadership team. He was the driving force behind ISIS' external attack planning. He was supervising the external operations group that carried out the Brussels attack, the Paris attack, and also that attack in Istanbul over the summer.

He was much more than just that, though. He was the sort of main voice of ISIS over the last couple of years. It was he who declared first the so-called caliphate even before Baghdadi did in June of 2014. And through these audiotapes in the last couple of years he's called on followers of ISIS around the world to launch attacks in ISIS' name.

And they've really responded to this. On both sides of the Atlantic we've seen attacks inspired by al-Adnani's call, notably the Orlando shooting in June which followed just a couple of weeks on from a call that he made for attacks during Ramadan. Also, recently that attack in Nice following on from a call from him to launch attacks with vehicles. So this is going to be a very difficult operative, Christine, for them to replace.

ROMANS: We're also hearing reports this morning, Paul, about ISIS stepping up its efforts to attack the U.K. What are your sources telling you about that?

CRUICKSHANK: Christine, a senior European counterterrorism official telling me that recent intelligence that's come in over the summer indicates that ISIS is stepping up their efforts to infiltrate operatives into the U.K. to launch attacks. It's been more difficult for ISIS to do this then to get operatives back into Western Europe because, of course, the U.K. is separated by a sea from the rest of Europe and it's not in this Schengen zone where there are 26 countries that don't have internal borders within Europe.

But this official also telling me that they are discovering more and more ISIS operatives on continental European soil and that they've been frustrated in their attempts to track these operatives because they're communicating securely, using encryption. And this official also telling me that cooperation between intelligence services in the European Union is just nowhere near where it needs to be, given the scale of this threat.

ROMANS: All right, Paul Cruickshank for us in London with that important development. Thank you for that.

HOWELL: All right, let's take a look now at what's coming up on "NEW DAY". Chris Cuomo joins us live.

ROMANS: Hey, Chris.

HOWELL: Chris, good morning.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR, "NEW DAY": G. Howell, C. Romans, thank you very much. We're going to be talking about this huge curveball from Donald Trump. He's making a last-minute trip to Mexico. He's going to meet with the country's president. And that meeting coming just hours before Trump tries to clarify his immigration proposals at a big speech in Arizona.

So what will that meeting look like? How is he going in there, what's his disposition? We're going to hear from his campaign about what the goals are there. I mean, the stakes are obvious. I mean, all the inflammatory rhetoric that he talked about has been outwardly criticized by Mexico's president, so what's going to happen there?

We're going to great perspective from Trump's running mate. Here on "NEW DAY", Indiana governor Mike Pence and former Mexican president Vicente Fox.

ROMANS: That will be really interesting to get his take on it.

HOWELL: He used to have some choice words for Vicente Fox.

ROMANS: All right, Chris Cuomo -- C. Cuomo, see you soon.

HOWELL: Chris, thanks.

ROMANS: Apple's stock price under pressure after the E.U. slapped Apple with a $14 billion tax bill. This stock is probably a part of your 401(k), folks, so what does this mean? We get an EARLY START on your money, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[05:53:00] ROMANS: All right, tropical weather bearing down on Florida and Hawaii. Meteorologist Pedram Javaheri has the latest for us.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PEDRAM JAVAHERI, AMS METEOROLOGIST: George and Christine, tropical depression nine sitting right there, just west of the island of Cuba at this point, producing a lot of rainfall in that region. Have seen reports of at least six inches come down in western Cuba.

The concern is similar amounts could move in toward the big bend of Florida as early as Thursday night and that rainfall certainly could be problematic when you talk about the intensity of it in such a short duration.

But to the north we're watching tropical depression eight. This particular storm already making a turn and moving away from the United States, so good news in that sense.

And look what happens. It is the final day of the meteorologicalsummer and we have cool Canadian air filtering in here as we head on into September 1st tomorrow. So the temperatures in places like Chicago actually dropping off below average. New York also down into the lower 80's by this weekend.

But I'll show you what the other big story is, guys, because we have a hurricane in the way of Madeline, another one is Lester, cat three, cat four respectively. Now, we've had very few of these make landfall over the Hawaiian Islands in recorded history in the past five and one-half decades of recordkeeping, but notice this.

Category one could come ashore near the south island sometime Wednesday night. The following also would be a category one on approach to land. That would be Saturday afternoon for both these storms, again, to get to landfall by this weekend -- guys.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HOWELL: A double punch there in the Pacific. Pedram, thank you so much. Breaking overnight, nine people found dead in a flooded out nursing home in northern Japan after a powerful typhoon barreled through. Torrential rain caused a nearby river to burst its banks. Right now, rescue crews -- they are trying to save another 400 people stranded by flooding and mudslides nearby.

ROMANS: All right, 54 minutes past the hour, last day of the month. Let's get a look at your money. Dow futures are flat right now. The market fell slightly yesterday as investors sorted through economic data ahead of the government's monthly job report Friday. Stock markets in Europe and Asia mixed. Oil is down after a big drop yesterday.

[05:55:00] It is the final trading day of the month and, for the record, all three major averages are up in August a little bit. Nasdaq, there in green, with the strongest performance of the three, still less than a one percent rise.

Stocks waivered for the past few weeks because investors are processing a new reality, that the Fed will likely raise rates. Fed Chief Janet Yellen hinting last week that could come sooner rather than later. There are three Fed meetings left this year. And frankly, if the Fed raised rates it's a sign that the economy is strong enough to withstand it.

Keep an eye on shares of Apple today. They are down in premarket trading. The stock dropped at yesterday's open after it was slapped with a $14.6 billion tax bill by the European Union and then recovered, finishing down less than a little bit than one percent. It's been a rough year for the stock. It's widely held in 401(k) accounts and other funds. It's up less than one percent after two slumping quarters of iPhone sales.

But the new fight for Apple is this tax bill. Apple says it will hurt business. The U.S. Treasury Department says itsupersedes U.S. tax laws essentially creating a global tax authority. Taxpayers could be on the hook, the Treasury says, because multinational corporations can claim a U.S. tax credit for overseas payments like this one.

But the E.U. says Apple cut a sweetheart deal and paid almost nothing in taxes. Apple funneled its revenue outside the U.S. through Ireland, which is a common practice among multinationals. It ended up paying an effective tax rate of just 0.005 percent on those sales. The regular rate in Ireland is 12.5 percent. Here in the U.S. the top business tax rate is 35 percent, the highest among all developed nations.

There's a growing rift in the U.S. economy. Now, on the campaign trail you hear what's not working in America, but when you look at the data Americans seem to be doing better financially. The latest evidence, consumer confidence.

July's readings jumped to the highest level in a year. Thirty percent of those surveyed said business conditions are good. That's up from June. Nineteen percent believe their wages will rise over the next six months -- that's up.

What's driving the optimism? Job growth has been strong. The economy added 547,000 jobs the past couple of months. Gas prices low, stock markets had solid gains for the year. The S&P 500 up almost 6.5 percent.

But more importantly, the housing market is strong. Even the bad housing numbers are actually good. Existing homes sales fell last month because of tight inventory -- extremely tight inventory. There's just not enough houses for sale on the market.

HOWELL: You know, those numbers, as we get closer to the election, will be critical in how do you feel about the economy.

ROMANS: That's right.

HOWELL: Which way the people will decide to vote, Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.

A story that we are following -- Donald Trump heading south of the border for a surprise meeting with Mexico's president. How will that conversation go? "NEW DAY" picks up right now.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I will build a great, great wall and I will have Mexico pay for that wall.

PENA NIETO: There is no way that Mexico can pay a wall like that.

HOWELL: Donald Trump heading south of the border in a surprise meeting with Mexico's president.

TRUMP, JR.: He wasn't softening on anything. You have to start with baby steps.

JORGE RAMOS, JOURNALIST: Donald Trump, right now, is in panic mode when it comes to Latinos.

TRUMP: Our country is going to hell.

GOV. MIKE PENCE (R-IN), VICE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I'm starting to feel some Clinton corruption fatigue.

TRUMP: Another 30 emails were discovered. It just never ends with the Clintons. SEN. TIM KAINE (D-VA), VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The Trump campaign just feels like Trump's next big con. He cannot be trusted.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.

CUOMO: Good morning, welcome to your NEW DAY. It's Wednesday, August 31st, 6:00 in the East.

Up first, Donald Trump is heading to Mexico, embarking on his first foreign trip as the Republican nominee. Trump is going to meet privately with Mexico's president ahead of his highly anticipated immigration speech in Arizona tonight.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: As you know, Trump has spent more than a year deriding Mexican immigrants and pledging that Mexico will pay for a border wall. But what about his stance on forced deportations of all undocumented immigrants? We have a lot of questions so let's begin our coverage with CNN's Jason Carroll. Hi, Jason.

JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning to you. And a lot of people, Alisyn, looking for answers. Will Trump do as promised and deport everyone who is undocumented? Will he take, what his son called, baby steps in his approach to illegal immigration and what does he hope to accomplish by meeting with Mexico's president? The answers expected today.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TRUMP: We are also going to secure our border and stop the drugs from pouring in.

CARROLL: Donald Trump surprising the political world by announcing that he is heading south of the border today to meet with Mexico's president just hours before his highly anticipated immigration speech. The visit coming after more than a year of criticizing Mexico on the campaign trail.

TRUMP: When Mexico sends it people they're not sending their best. They're bringing drugs, they're bringing crime, they're rapists, and some, I assume, are good people.

CARROLL: Trump tweeting "I have accepted the invitation of President Enrique Pena Nieto of Mexico, and look very much forward to meeting him." A surprising invitation, given Nieto's previous comments about Trump, rejecting the Republican nominee's promise he'll make the Mexican government pay for a 1,000-mile border wall.