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GOP Feels Pressure After Election; Vote on Tax Plan; Biker Brawl Trial; UCLA Players Arrested. Aired 9:30-10a ET

Aired November 9, 2017 - 09:30   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[09:32:51] POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: Right now the grand old party working to regain footing after Tuesday night's sweeping election defeats. The big question, what does it all mean for 2018?

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Joining us now, Republican Congressman Leonard Lance of New Jersey, a state which saw a big shift in the bluer (ph) direction.

Congressman, thanks so much for being with us.

We haven't had a chance to talk to you since the election. The big question is, do you see this as a referendum in some way on the president?

REP. LEONARD LANCE (R), NEW JERSEY: At least in New Jersey, John, I think it's based upon our history. When one party has held the governorship for eight years in New Jersey, then almost always the other party comes into office. And I view this, at least in New Jersey, in the context of our history.

BERMAN: Beyond -- beyond New Jersey?

LANCE: Yes. Beyond New Jersey, I think that the margin in Virginia was larger than I had anticipated, but I do think that each election cycle is determined based upon the issues that exist at that time. We have to be careful moving forward. And that is why we should vote our consciousness, as I always try to do.

HARLOW: Well, it was -- yes, as you said, it was a 9.9 percent margin in Virginia. Gillespie really embraced, you know, much of what the president stands for, if not the president himself, and has many people talking about whether his approach was genuine and how much it changed between the primary and the general. What message are these key, key suburban voters in Virginia, the ones in New Jersey, in your district? What message are they sending to you right now?

LANCE: I think the message is that we have to work in a bipartisan capacity, Poppy. And I don't think the American people, and certainly this is true in the district I serve, I don't think constituents favor overly partisan behavior. And that is why I hope we can come together in a bipartisan capacity on important issues like tax reform and health care. BERMAN: One more election question before we get to taxes. Look, Frank

LoBiondo of the state of New Jersey announced his retirement. Some people thought that the election return on Tuesday may shake some Republicans, like yourself, in these swing states in suburban districts loose. Are you committed to running for re-election?

[09:35:02] LANCE: I am committed to running for re-election. Congressman LoBiondo has served with great distinction and he will have served 24 years. And I certainly commend his public service. But he has served here for 24 years.

HARLOW: OK. But to be clear, this is not shaking you. You are running again.

Let's move on to taxes.

You were here sitting with us on this set last week and you opposed the Republican House tax plan as it stood. Has your mind changed because of the changes that have been made? Do you support it now?

LANCE: I do not. I don't think there have been major changes since last week, Poppy. And I want all states to be winners, not some states. And I don't want some states to be losers. And, of course the salt provision is incredibly important for New Jersey. It's been in the tax code since 1913. There are fine provisions in the tax reform proposal, doubling the standard deduction, for example, but I do favor making sure that we retain salt.

BERMAN: So the White House budget director, Mick Mulvaney, said that the president won't sign a bill that raises taxes on the middle class. Do you think that this bill raises taxes on some middle class voters in your district?

LANCE: As I review the analysis, that is possible in the district I serve. And, John, my title is representative, so I represent those whom I serve. And I understand this might not be true across the nation, but it has the potential of being true in the district I serve because of the fact that New Jersey is a sending state, not a receiving state. And it's important that we continue to have the ability to deduct property taxes, which are the highest in the nation in New Jersey, and also our state income tax.

HARLOW: So you think it's possible this would raise taxes on the middle class? That's what all the independent analysis say right now from the Tax Policy Center to the Joint Committee on Taxation. Then why is the White House selling this as a middle class tax break? I mean should they sell this as a huge tax cut for corporate America, which they believe will help many Americans? Should they sell it more that way because that's what it is?

LANCE: I do believe we need to lower corporate rates. And I hope there's negotiations to make sure that all Americans in the middle class can benefit. I'm not sure that's the true across the board now. I want this to be a win for all middle class Americans, including, of course, those who live in the district I serve.

BERMAN: Right.

HARLOW: I know but we're -- I'm asking you specifically about how the White House is selling this?

LANCE: I --

HARLOW: Should they stop selling this as totally for the middle class?

LANCE: It's clear that this does lower the corporate rate, and I would hope that the White House could review the analysis and we could move in the direction of bipartisan cooperation making sure that everybody benefits, which I think is possible.

BERMAN: All right, congressman Leonard Lance, great to have you with us.

HARLOW: Thank you.

BERMAN: Thanks so much, sir. Good luck on your re-election campaign.

LANCE: Well, thank you, John. Thank you, Poppy.

HARLOW: Nice to have you.

Just moments ago, Democratic Senator Bob Menendez spoke to reporters outside of the federal courthouse in New Jersey. He is awaiting the verdict in his corruption/bribery trial. The senator says he's confident he will be cleared in the case. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. BOB MENENDEZ (D), NEW JERSEY: Listen, the jury has family, children, jobs. I get, after nine weeks, 60 witnesses, hundreds of pages, that they're doing their job. And they also have challenges at home. So, you know, I'm happy to wait for the jury to come to a just verdict.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: He says he's happy to wait. He doesn't have a choice, by the way.

HARLOW: No.

BERMAN: He could be happy about it or not. .He's got to wait for the jury to reach a verdict. This is the fourth day of deliberations. We have teams in the courtroom. We will bring you the verdict the second it happens.

In the meantime, closing arguments starting in a really fascinating trial. You'll remember this. This has to do with the biker brawl in Texas. We have a live update, next.

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[09:43:23] BERMAN: All right, closing arguments about to get underway in a case that really shocked the nation. This has to do with the biker brawl in Waco, Texas. A leader of one of the local gang chapters faces life in prison for his role in the shoot-out.

HARLOW: The gunfight left nine people dead, dozens wounded. This case is one of 154 bikers who were indicted following this.

Our Ed Lavandera has been on the story since it happened.

Ed, we all remember your documentary on this. Now the first trial. What's expected?

ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONNDENT: Well, it's really a fascinating case because it has far-reaching implications, one of the first bikers to go on trial. And what happens here could mean a lot for the rest of the dozens of other cases still left to try.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get on the ground. Keep your hands up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It sounded like a gunfight at the OK Corral, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, one right after another.

LAVANDERA (voice over): Two and a half years after the deadly gun battle at the Twin Peaks Restaurant in Waco, Texas, the case against the first biker put on trial, Jake Carrizal, is just now headed to a jury. He faces up to life in prison.

Nearly 180 bikers were arrested in May of 2015 after the violent shoot-out that killed nine people. This mugshot soup was an unprecedented roundup, 154 bikers were indicted on a charge of engaging in organized criminal activity.

The shoot-out stemmed from a simmering battle between rival motorcycle clubs, the Banditos, a notorious club and self-described outlaws, and the Cossacks, one of the other large clubs in Texas.

[09:45:05] Jake Carrizal is the president of the Bandito's Dallas chapter. Carrizal spoke exclusively with CNN last year for the documentary "Biker Brawl: Inside the Texas Shootout." He was one of the first Bandito's to roll into the Twin Peaks parking lot, waiting on the patio where dozens of Cossacks, which is seen on the surveillance camera footage, first obtained by CNN, as Carrizal parked his motorcycle, the Cossacks moved in. Seconds later, the confrontation erupted. Punches turned to gunfire and all-out mayhem.

JAKE CARRIZAL, BANDITO'S BIKER: We were ambushed in a war zone. And I've never been that scared in my life.

LAVANDERA: The Cossacks say they were there to make peace. The Banditos say the Cossacks showed up at a biker meeting that day to surprise them and start a violent fight.

CARRIZAL: It seemed like just seconds later I stated hearing gunshots go off. I had guys all over me. I had Cossacks all over me. LAVANDERA: Carrizal is in an all-out brawl on the ground with the Cossacks. The Bandito's leader says he acted in self-defense that day. Surveillance video shows another biker walk up to him and take aim.

LAVANDERA (on camera): You actually see four plumes of smoke come out -- from him and he's pointed right at you --

CARRIZAL: Oh, yes. Yes, yes. Boom, boom.

LAVANDERA: And then boom, boom, boom, and then you fall to the ground. You didn't get hit?

CARRIZAL: No. Looks like a cop, you know, may have taken him out and thank God.

LAVANDERA: He drops right after he fired four times.

CARRIZAL: Yes. Wow.

LAVANDERA (voice over): Prosecutors say Carrizal instructed his crew to bring their, quote, tools, slang for firearms, and that the Banditos came to exact revenge for assault on some of their fellow Banditos brothers that had occurs in the months before the Twin Peaks shoot-out.

ABEL REYNA, DISTRICT ATTORNEY: The evidence will take you to a sub culture that exists in our society known as the one percenter -- the one percenter biker group, the one percenter biker club, where the evidence will show has no regard for the laws of society.

LAVANDERA: Jake Carrizal testified over two days at the end of this first biker trial. The exchanges with prosecutors were often tense.

REYNA: No good that you do will ever correct what happened here in Waco, Texas.

CARRIZAL: Well, I know you're blaming us for this event, but --

REYNA: Who do you blame?

CARRIZAL: I don't blame us. I don't blame the cops for it.

REYNA: Who's responsible?

CARRIZAL: The club that surrounded us that day is, and that had no business being there.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

LAVANDERA: So, guys, the legal intrigue surrounding all of this really is fascinating. After this case there's still more than 150 other trials to move on, and it's not exactly clear when those will happen. This has come at great costs here to McLennan County, where Waco is located.

And on top of all of this, there's also a federal investigation into some of the top leaders of the Bandito's national organization. So all of this kind of plays together and the outcome of this trial could heavily impact the rest of those cases.

BERMAN: It's just the beginning. This will be fascinating to watch.

HARLOW: Wow.

BERMAN: Ed Lavandera down in Waco for us.

Thanks so much, Ed.

HARLOW: Three American college basketball players accused of shoplifting in China. Well, now, they could be forced to stay inside their hotel room for months as the justice system plays itself out there, ahead.

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[09:52:53] HARLOW: Three players for UCLA's men's basketball team remain confined in their hotel rooms in China after they were arrested on shoplifting charges.

BERMAN: Andy Scholes has more in this morning's "Bleacher Report."

Hey, Andy.

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONNDENT: Hey, good morning, guys.

This "Bleacher Report" presented by the new 2018 Ford F-150. Now, the three players were arrested after being accused of stealing

sun glasses from a Louis Vuitton store. And according to ESPN, not being allowed to leave the hotel until the legal process plays out.

Of course, all this happening while President Trump is in China.

And new video this morning from an ESPN reporter that's in China with the team showing the hotel where the players are being held. Now according to "The L.A. Times" Chinese authorities have up to 37 days to decide whether to obtain official approval for an arrest. And a lawyer I spoke with that's familiar with international law believes the players will probably not face severe punishment and just get sent home with a stern warning.

Now, one of the UCLA players is the younger brother of Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball. And, Lonzo, well, he was asked about his brother's situation before his game with the Celtics yesterday.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LONZO BALL, LAKERS: I'm just trying to focus on the game. Now I know my people over there will handling that. So I'm over here just taking care of business. I haven't talked to any of them.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHOLES: Now, Lonzo's Lakers in action against the Celtics last night and Lonzo getting booed heavily by the fans there in Boston. And didn't have a great game. Here he gets rejected by Marcus Smart while trying to drive to the basket.

Kyrie Irving, on the other hand, continues to be huge highlight reel. Check him out, just dribbling around the entire Lakers team before going in for the lay-up. Looked more like the Harlem Globetrotters than an NBA game there for a second. The Celtics win 107-96. That was their tenth straight win. They have the best record in the NBA right now.

All right, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is threatening to sue the NFL. Jones has hired high powered attorney David Boies, who's currently representing Harvey Weinstein, to try to keep the NFL from giving Goodell a contract extension. Now, that's according to "The New York Times" and ESPN. Jones reportedly not happy with the way Goodell has handled the suspension of Cowboy's running back Ezekiel Elliott and the handling of the national anthem controversy.

Goodell has been the commissioner of the NFL for 11 years. His contract expires after 2018/2019 season. A spokesman for the NFL tells CNN that all 32 owners gave the OK in the spring to give Goodell a new contract. But, guys, according to those reports, apparently Jerry Jones has had a change of heart and he's kind of, you know, drawn a line in the sand saying, you're either with me or Roger Goodell. And it's going to be interesting to see how that plays out.

[09:55:22] BERMAN: Andy, a couple follow up questions on your first story. Who has the best record in the NBA?

SCHOLES: That would be the Boston Celtics, John.

BERMAN: And how many games have they won in a row?

SCHOLES: Ten.

BERMAN: All right.

SCHOLES: It's a good run.

BERMAN: Andy Scholes --

HARLOW: Totally unbiased reporting over here.

BERMAN: Thanks so much, Andy. Appreciate it.

SCHOLES: All right, have a good one.

HARLOW: Bye.

All right, President Trump with quite a new revelation, quite a change of heart, quite a change of tune. Not blaming China at all for taking advantage of the United States on trade after calling them a host of names not that long ago. Why? The latest developments ahead.

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BERMAN: All right, good morning, everyone. I'm John Berman.

HARLOW: And I'm Poppy Harlow.

[09:59:59] After the blue wave on Tuesday night, Republicans eager, perhaps more eager than ever, to pass their tax overhaul. But selling it as a middle-class tax cut is getting harder and harder as the details come out.