Skip to main content

tv   Smerconish  CNN  May 14, 2022 6:00am-7:00am PDT

6:00 am
is the west closer to war with russia than we realize? i'm michael smerconish in philadelphia. a new report from newsweek says a russian lawmaker and top member of vladimir putin's political party has suggested attacking poland next. using the same language russia has used to justify invading ukraine, russian state oleg said poland is, quote, first place in the cue for denazication after ukraine, this after poland's prime minister wrote a column in britain's telegraph newspaper criticizing putin and propaganda that he's spreading about the war. that exchange coming after nato is set to double its border with russia with the inclusion of finland in the military alliance. in response, putin told finland's president just moments ago during a phone call that joining would be a mistake. that conversation taking place after russia cut electricity to the nordic country. here in the u.s., the house overwhelmingly approved additional 40 billion in
6:01 am
military aid and humanitarian aid for ukraine, bringing america's support for the effort to nearly 54 billion with no other country having that large of a financial or military or humanitarian commitment, it's expected to pass the senate early next week before heading to the president's desk for signing. that bill along with leaks from the biden administration in recent days seems to underscore just how embroiled the united states has become in the war in ukraine. on may 4th, new york times reported senior american officials said the u.s. provided intelligence that allowed ukrainians to take out as many as 12 russian generals. the next day, an nbc report cited anonymous u.s. officials u.s. intel also helped ukraine sink the flagship of the moskva. there's growing concern the aid the u.s. is providing ukraine could trigger all-out conflict with russia. my next guest re-enforced that fear in a recent column "the new york times," they suggest we are no longer in an indirect war
6:02 am
with russia but rather are edging toward a direct war and no one has prepared the american people or congress for that. with me now to discuss is thomas freedman, foreign affairs columnist, three times pulitzer prize winner for the new york times and author most recently of the best seller "thank you for being late:optimist guide thriving in the age of accelerations." tom, thank you for coming back. you wrote that column on may 6th. has anything altered your thinking in the last week or so? >> well, michael, great to be with you. in a way, yes. i think that the biden administration people certainly rhetorically have understood that it was a great mistake to be boasting about u.s. intelligence helping to sink russian ships or kill russian generals. i think they've understood it's really important in a war to have very tight-focussed objectives. our objective in this war is to help ukraine liberate its country and defend its border.
6:03 am
nothing more, nothing less. as long as we stick to that, michael, we have a good chance of maintaining both the domestic support for the war and the nato alliance. and even more globally. the minute you start to drift away from that, talk about taking down putin, et cetera, you start to, i think, fray the alliance. >> okay. so, i'm glad you said that because i struggle to understand the guardrails, the guardrail meaning that the migs are too much but providing the intel for taking out russian generals apparently is acceptable. on thursday, i'll put something on the screen and i'll read it to you, tom. "the washington post" said the following, they said this, the administration has drawn up guidance around intelligence sharing that is calibrated to avoid heightening tensions between washington and moscow, given to intelligence personnel at the working level, the guidance has placed two broad prohi bigss on the kinds of information that the united states can share with ukraine. first, the united states cannot provide detailed information that would help ukraine kill
6:04 am
russian leadership figures such as the most senior military officers or ministers, the second category of prohibited intelligence sharing is any information that would help ukraine attack russian targets outside ukraine's borders. are those guardrails well defined, in your view? >> yeah. i think they're a response, michael, to those leaks and to make it -- to make everyone stay focussed on what our objectives are, which is, again, helping the ukrainians restore their sovereignty and should they choose to negotiate with the russians, to make some kind of dirty deal if necessary in order to simply save the country from being ravaged by war, to support them in that. and not going anywhere beyond that. i think the administration got that message. and that story seemed to me to be the response. >> well, i mean, the administration may have gotten the message about loose lips sink ships, but nevertheless, our policy is still one of
6:05 am
being -- look at the 40 billion so long as ran paul can be dealt with, look at the 40 billion in aid that will now be forthcoming what more could we do other than troops on the ground? >> yeah. i would agree with you that number is staggering. and it took me a little bit by surprise. i sure would like to know exactly what goes in it. what are we actually promising here. i don't i don't think the administration has done a good job of breaking that down. we have to remind ourselves everyday, what are the objectives? they have to be very focussed, very tight and you don't stray from them. when you're trying to herd all these cats together of this kind of alliance, the minute you step out of defending ukraine, helping it restore its border, nothing more, nothing less, you invite trouble. >> another subject about which you write extensively, china. is there some solace to be taken
6:06 am
by americans that china has thus far sat it out? and does the president deserve credit in that regard? >> yeah. yeah. president biden called president xi early in the war and made it very clear that if he hadn't done the math, biden would do it for them. the european union and the united states are china's two largest export markets. and should china provide military aid to russia, that was going to affect its two biggest markets. i think the chinese did the math. i think also as it became quickly apparent to the chinese that putin was losing, i think they also didn't care to be on his side either. the chinese have enough trouble at home. they're fighting their own war with mother nature over the omicron virus. and i think they understood that the last thing they needed was to get embroiled in this actual military conflict in europe. >> tom, at the outset i mentioned some russians saber rattling toward poland. poland carrying the laboring or with regard to the refugee
6:07 am
situation thus far. what thoughts might you have about poland's role? >> i'm glad you raised that. it's very important part. poland has been a key nato ally in this war, basically providing the bridge into ukraine for all -- for a lot of the military equipment, not all. if i were putin, and i had written this earlier, and i was looking for a hail mary right now, i would attack poland and basically challenge nato to actually live up to its article 5 part of the agreement that says every member has to help defend another member if it's attacked. and i think there's a lot of countries that are happy to provide material support to ukraine but not military support. so i worry very much that putin's escalatory move would not be a nuclear use of nuclear weapon, god forbid, it would be to attack poland. and say to the american people, are you now ready to fight me
6:08 am
directly? are you ready to put troops into poland that would be embroiled in a war in central europe? i would watch that story. glad you raised it. >> okay. well that makes me nervous. let's go back to where we began about your level of concern and americans and the congress not being totally focussed. i think we're eagerly awaiting the return of amber heard and johnny depp. how concerned should we be today? >> i think we should be very concerned. and i think i took some solace this morning, michael, reading that secretary defense austin had called his russian counterpart and said we need to fire. this is getting to a point where, you know, you don't want to walk away from the battle now that the russians appear to be losing. i think it's important they be driven back to the border. one country cannot go rape another country in europe which is what putin has done. but at the same time, there's only one thing more dangerous
6:09 am
than a victorious russia and that's a losing, possibly even disintegrating russia. >> sobering thoughts. thomas freedman, thank you as always. we really appreciate your time. >> my pleasure, michael. thank you. what are all of you thinking? tweet me at smerconish, go to my facebook page, youtube, wherever. i'll read some responses throughout the course of the program. katherine what do we have? from youtube, no, you're not edging toward war. we're all helping ukraine defend itself. maja, obviously you sent that via youtube before hearing from tom friedman. hear him rattle off his list of concerns i wonder if you would be saying the same thing. i share his concern which leads me to this week's survey question. i want you to go to my website at this hour, do you agree with thomas friedman the u.s. is edging toward a direct war and no one prepared the american people or congress for that? up ahead, before tuesday's
6:10 am
pennsylvania primary, president trump made another big endorsement, this has just happened. that's in the gubernatorial race. in the senate race, both parties seem on the verge of nominating i'll say extreme candidates, abandoning the majority the middle, like me. ♪ voltararen. the joy of movement. ♪ when i'm on my hands and knees and i'm digging through the dirt, i feel something in me, like a fire, that's just growing. i feel kinder, when nature so kind to me. find more ys to grow with miracle-gro. frank is a fan of st. he's a fast talker. a fast walker. thanks, gary. and for unexpected heartburn... frank is a fan of pepcid. it works in minutes. nexium 24 hour and prilosec otc can take one to four days to fully work. pepcid. strong relief for fans of fast. i strip on public transit.
6:11 am
i strip with the guys. i strip all by myself. breathe right strips open your nose for relief you can feel right away, helping you take in air more easily, day or night. trelegy for copd. ♪ birds flyin' high ♪ ♪ you know how i feel ♪ (coughing) ♪ breeze driftin' on by ♪ ♪ you know how i feel ♪ copd may have gotten you here, but you decide what's next. start a new day with trelegy. ♪ ...feelin' good ♪ no once-daily copd medicine has the power to treat copd in as many ways as trelegy. with three medicines in one inhaler, trelegy helps people breathe easier and improves lung function. it also helps prevent future flare-ups. trelegy won't replace a rescue inhaler for sudden breathing problems. tell your doctor if you have a heart condition or high blood pressure before taking it. do not take trelegy more than prescribed. trelegy may increase your risk of thrush, pneumonia, and osteoporosis. call your doctor if worsened breathing,
6:12 am
chest pain, mouth or tongue swelling, problems urinating, vision changes, or eye pain occur. take a stand and start a new day with trelegy. ask your doctor about once-daily trelegy. and save at dry skin is sensitive skin, too. and it's natural. that's why aveeno® daily moisture lotion and body wash are formulated to be gentle on dry skin. with nourishing prebiotic oat and rich, soothing emollients. together this duo locks in moisture all day. for softer, healthier looking skin. proven on skin like yours. aveeno. healthy. it's our nature.™ (fisher investments) in this market, you'll find fisher investments is different than other money managers.
6:13 am
(other money manager) different how? aren't we all just looking for the hottest stocks? (fisher investments) nope. we use diversified strategies to position our client's portfolios for their long-term goals. (other money manager) but you still sell investments that generate high commissions for you, right? (fisher investments) no, we don't sell commission products. we're a fiduciary, obligated to act in our client's best interest. (other money manager) so when do you make more money, only when your clients make more money? (fisher investments) yep. we do better when our clients do better. at fisher investments, we're clearly different. ready to style in just one step? introducing new tresemme one step stylers.
6:14 am
five professional benefits. one simple step. totally effortless. styling has never been easier. tresemme. do it with style. to my radio audience i've been saying i told you so for months i said all eyes across the country should be on the pennsylvania senate and gubernatorial elections. and while i knew things would get interesting, i never envisioned the many twists and turns in the home stretch, but here we are. this morning, former president trump just made his endorsement in the gubernatorial race. this to replace outgoing democratic governor wolf. josh shapiro is running unopposed. among the republican contenders the findings of a poll released
6:15 am
monday says state senator doug is at 28%, former u.s. representative lou in second at 18%, delaware county businessman dave white at 15% and former u.s. attorney bill mcswane at 14% with 11% undecided. the gop regulars have been trying to combine forces to derail mastriano seen as too extreme to win in november. unusual move, shapiro the democrat released an ad apparently thinking that might make shapiro's path to victory in november easier. here is an excerpt. >> it's mastriano wrote the heart beat bill in pennsylvania and one of donald trump's strongest supporters. he wants to end vote by mail and he led the fight to audit the 2020 election. mastriano wins, it's a win for what donald trump stands for. is that what we want in
6:16 am
pennsylvania? >> in other words, shapiro is trying to hand pick his opponent. could it backfire? maybe. just this hour trump endorsed mas mas mastriano, calling him a man that will never let you down. the democrats have three main contenders, john fedderman, congressman conner lam and state representative malcolm kiniata. most of the attention and money spent is on david mccormick and tv's dr. oz, the latter of whom got president trump's endorsement. but there's a late surge in the polls by an underdog, kathy bar net, described on her website as, veteran, former adjunct professor of corporate finance, conservative political commentator. in the final week of the campaign, bar net got endorsement $2 million in tv ads a club for growth pac, conservative pac the ohio senate primary opposed jd vance only to
6:17 am
have vance get trump's endorsement and win. barnet put abortion at the center of her candidacy calling herself the by-product of her mother raped at 11. december not having 45, maga does not belong to the present. the most recent poll has this race at this percent. regardless of who wins, i think there are already lessons to be learned from pennsylvania. last week i tweeted this, among my preelection take aways from the upcoming pennsylvania primary, number one, this is who you get when we lack investigative journalists. two, it shows the decreasing importance of paid for television ads. and three, closed primaries suck. every time you read that another local news room has been evis eviscerated, please realize what society loses in terms of government oversight.
6:18 am
your local school board the county commissioners and, yes, statewide candidates are getting too much of a free pass. in a bigone era, all these pennsylvania candidates would have been fully vetted by the local media. instead, there's a scramble under way to educate the public in the 11th hour when many have already returned their ballots. on thursday, former president trump released this statement about barnet. he said kathy barnet will never be able to win the general election against the radical left democrats. she has many things in her past which have not been properly explained or vetted. but if she's able to do so, she will have a wonderful future in the republican party and i will be behind her all the way. there's pretzel logic in that. let me make this observation, it's ironic that trump and those who don't want to see barnet win are speaking about her lack of vetting. they themselves are partly to blame. in having so denigrated the media, they've limited the
6:19 am
impact of any investigative journalism that might be done about barnet or any other candidate. so with it, cnn's kay file dropped a serious look at barnet this week. it began this week, surging pennsylvania gop senate candidate kathy barnet has a history of aints muslim, anti-gay statements. she ford the theory that former president obama is a muslim. in one speech up loaded to youtube in 2015, barnet forcefully argued it was okay to discriminate against muslims and compared rejecting islam to, quote, rejecting hitlers or stalin's world views. in comments on her radio show, she said accepting homosexuality would lead to the accepting of incest and pedophilia. one post that she wrote, called a transgender person deformed. and demonic. one of her tweets discovered from 2015 was this, pedophilia is a corner stone of islam.
6:20 am
recently confronted about this by an nbc reporter, barnet has this remarkable response. >> this says pedophilia is a corner stone of islam? >> yeah, nope. i don't think that's me. i would never have said that. >> that's some joy reed stuff there. all this is pretty strong. all documented. where trump derides the dominant media as fake news, how can he now expect his followers to believe it? republicans who don't want mastriano or barnet can't win a general election can't count on the media to do its dirty work. up until a week ago, nearly 50 million had been spent on mccormick and oz, as compared to 137,000 for barnet, tv outlets and media buyers better be ware, the outcome of this race might cause reconsideration of whether you can still buy an election with tv advertising alone. never in the history of pennsylvania politics has so
6:21 am
much been spent by so many for such meager results. third observation from me, pennsylvania is now a textbook example of what is wrong with closed primaries. there are nine closed primary states in the nation. not with standing that my tax dollars are funding tuesday's primaries, i have no vote. where i'm registered as an independent. there are nearly 1.3 million people like me in pennsylvania. on tuesday, we have no say. we have to sit back and wait for the parties to nominate. in the senate, that looks like democrat john fedderman and one of the three republicans who tried to outdo one another laying claim to the maga movement. fedderman is a democrat in the mold of bernie sanders. and despite the stakes in the race, i argue he wasn't fully vetted for a 2013 incident in which he brandished a shotgun unarmed black jogger. more over as the philadelphia inquirer noted this week, despite his role as president of the state senate, not a single member of that body is
6:22 am
supporting his candidacy nor any member of the state house. the stronger, general election candidate among the dems, conner lam. marine veteran, former prosecutor, moderate member of congress, who already won in trump territory. but here is the thing, just like the republicans, the democrats who vote in primaries, they're at the end of the ideological spectrum. so lam will probably come up short in the primary despite the fact that i think he would be invincible in a general election. and fedderman will face one of the three trump ak lites. means the citizens of the commonwealth will have a choice of a far left and far right candidate to represent a state that is a deep shade of purple. and that's a shame. stay with me. right after the break, we'll discuss all of this with my fabulous panel, holly otterbien from politico. cnn political commentator david urban and chief poster robert cahaly are here.
6:23 am
it's still the eat fresh® refresh at subway®, and now they're refreshing their classics... with a classic! [ refresh] because their classic sweet onion sauce is getting refreshed on the new sweet onion steak riyaki. couldn't get brady this time, h? bway® keeps refreshing and refre- she's feeling the por of listerine. he's feeling it. yep, them too. it's an invigorating rush... ...zapping millions of germs in seconds. for that one-of-a-kind whoa... ...which leaves you feeling... ahhhhhhh listerine. feel the whoa!
6:24 am
i brought in ensure max protein, with thirty grams of protein. those who tried me felt more energy in just two weeks! (sighs wearily) here i'll take that! (excited yell) woo-hoo! ensure max protein. with thirty grams of protein, one gram of sugar, and nutrients to support immune health.
6:25 am
this is lily. when you see things differently, you can be the difference. ♪ capella university sees education differently. our flexpath learning format helps you control the pace and cost of your master's degree.
6:26 am
6:27 am
are you a christian author with a book that you're ready to share with the world? get published now, call for your free publisher kit today! just this morning, former president trump endorsed doug mastriano for pennsylvania governor. will hardliners win tuesday's crucial primaries for senate and governor. where does that leave voters? joining me is holly otterbein. she just wrote this piece "ultra maga long shot roars into contention in key senate race. cnn political commentator david urban, heck, he ran the trump campaign in pennsylvania in 2016, was on trump's 2020
6:28 am
advisory committee, and robert the chief pollster for the group which has a history of showing up the traditional pollsters, remember in 2016, correctly had trump beating clinton in pennsylvania, michigan, wisconsin, florida and north carolina and accurately predicted the final electoral college result in the 2018 midterms. the only firm to call ron desantis and rick scott's victories in florida. in 2020, outperformed the competition again named winner by the hill. holly, i'm starting with you. i'm giving you props. you told me in the green room that trump had just done this. why did he do it? >> this is huge. i can't believe that this happened right as we were going on tv. and you know, trump, look, he's looking at a senate race in which he endorsed dr. oz. came out early enough for him. really put a lot of effort behind him. did a rally for him. and oz in the last poll that we saw is in a three-way
6:29 am
statistical tie with david mccormick and kathy barnette, spent virtually no money on tv and virtual underdog. what does he get? mastriano is up ten plus points, a victory. does this hurt his endorsement of oz because kathy barnette has been a top ally of doug. she is actually going to appear at a rally with him later today in bucks county. >> david urban, you ran the trump campaign that won in 2016. is mastriano too maga for pennsylvania? >> michael, i don't think there's such a thing in the primary. and -- >> right. >> i wasn't shocked by the president's endorsement of doug mastriano. i thought it was coming. i was just surprised that it came so late. i think this is about the president's win/loss record.
6:30 am
the president likes to tout how his record has lots and lots of victories people he supported. he's concerned about dr. oz losing on tuesday. he wanted a winning. it's clear by all the polling that doug mastriano is going to win. not a close shot. so i think the president's endorsement here is looking to bolster his record. >> i'm not letting you off the hook, david urban. can mastriano win a general in pennsylvania? >> no. no, i don't think he can. i think he's -- michael, you and i go way back and we've been doing this stuff far long time. you know, pennsylvania is a very long history of electing moderates, right? whether it's dick thornberg or tom ridge, arlen specter. it's very purple state, as you said, originally. and i think mastriano is too
6:31 am
hot, too conservative, too far out, too far right for the pennsylvania general electorate. i think josh shapiro will be the victor in that race. and i think that's why you saw "the wall street journal" and many mainstream republicans ringing their hands about doug mastriano at the top of the ticket. they fear he'll be a big drag on the ticket and will weigh down the race. i think that's why many republicans are very hopeful that david mccormick will win on tuesday because they believe he is the strongest candidate to win with mastriano at the top of the ticket. i think it's a clear shot for mccormick against fetterman. it's less clear oz and less, less clear barnette against fetterman. the only shot pennsylvanians have mccormick in the senate race if they want to continue to have some republican representation in the state at the highest levels. >> robert, you've got that chesh shire cat grin like you knew this was coming.
6:32 am
to david urban's point, josh shapiro just tweeted. katherine, can you put it up on the screen. trump just endorsed one of the most extreme and dangerous gop candidates in the country for governor of pennsylvania. wants to ban abortion, undermine the elections, attended the 1/6 insurrection and crossed police barricades. he's got to be the happiest guy in the commonwealth, robert. how do you see the gubernatorial race in pennsylvania? >> well, you know, our polls showed that mastriano had a significant lead, but what some people missed in this last week two of the lower candidates dropped out and endorsed barnette. so i can tell you from what we observed that race had tightened significantly. so i think this was not a situation where mastriano was on his way without this endorsement is very helpful to mastriano. you know, there is inertia in
6:33 am
politics. also considering that as a nominee, he's certainly going to be more to the right. but 2022 is shaping up to be the kind of year -- i mean, these guys aren't running against democrats. they're running against joe biden and a record that even mastriano might be able to be governor based on. so i wouldn't write him off just because i think this year is going to be a significant amount of votes that -- people aren't going to see this coming. >> robert -- >> michael -- >> if you're the type of person -- let me just finish this one thought with robert. robert, if you're the type of person who says i'm for mastriano or i'm for barnette, it seems to me, you're not changing your mind. you're passionate. you're hard core. you're not all of a sudden between now and tuesday going to flip. is that fair, robert? >> i think it's fair, but you made a very good point about the lack of vetting. and what we have seen in the last few days is both mccormick
6:34 am
and oz, whether it's their campaign or super pacs have focussed on putting a lot of information out there about kathy barnette. and there comes a point where people are hearing things and going, oh, i didn't know that. i didn't know this. i didn't know that. and there is a real republican concern about viability in the fall. certainly i think it is probably a bigger concern than you might realize. they want to control the senate. they really can't afford to lose this seat. so i can see where people might be moved off if they find out something they had no idea about. but it takes a lot of money and a lot of attention to do it. two campaigns super pacs spending the money is the way to get the message done. i think they're doing it. >> holly, fifth year reporting. 50 mil spent for oz and mccormick on 137,000 for barnette. now, on one hand you say, wow, all that money was ineffectual. on the other hand you say, no, it was very effect chul.
6:35 am
mutual destroyed destruction is what left her a path. your comment? >> yeah. i mean, look, kathy barnette no doubt has benefitted that the fact that oz went nuclear on each other. why then did kathy barnette benefit? why wasn't it jeff or carl snarks. >> her partnership with doug mastriano is very beneficial. her story is very compelling. she's talked on the trail about how she is a, quote, this is how she puts it, by-product of a rape. and how that has influenced her views on abortion. her mother was 11 years old when she was conceived. a lot of voters that i talked up brought up that bio brought up her pro life positions. and she also, you know, made a name for herself within the republican grass roots leading this hunt for baseless voter fraud after her 2020 house race that she lost. >> david urban, what do you make
6:36 am
of your former boss, president trump's statement, relative to barnette. i quoted see the li dan. it's some real pretzel logic to say she's not been vetted. but if she is vet and wins i'll be supporting her. >> well, you know, the president is trying to have it both ways there, michael. clearly as robert and you pointed out, there is the lack of journalism, investigative journalism in this instance is just kind of demonstrating itself in terms of today or yesterday daily caller had a piece out saying that her record and the army times, military times saying her military record has been misrepresented. her record on wall street has been misrepresented. her record basically her entire record has been misrepresented. and nobody really caught on to that or reported on that until just the past 72 hours. maybe that's too late, robert. robert was alluding to how is it already baked in. i think -- i was out -- i've been in pennsylvania the past
6:37 am
couple days. i think the tide is turning. i'm on the ground there talking to voters. and you get a sense that people are kind of -- that rise has been blunted. i think it's back down to two-person race. i think that she does have some support. her ties to mastriano are definitely going to help her. the end of the day when people realize how incredibly serious this, they're going to take pause. ted cruz had a line on the front page of the pittsburgh post-gazette said i'm for the most conservative candidate that can win, right. and cruz is obviously endorsing dave mccormick. a lot of republican voters are thinking about that. and they'll think about that as they head in and who could be the most -- who can win in the fall? and that's very important. >> i gotch ya. listen, i -- >> yeah. >> i have to point out, david urban, you have a dog in this fight. you have a connection to mccormick. i want everybody to know that. >> yep. >> robert, robert -- >> 100%.
6:38 am
david mccormick fan. >> robert, sum it up. what is going to happen tuesday in pennsylvania? >> sure. that's great. well, i think that there's -- i would say mastriano has the momentum he needs to win. i would give the edge on the senate race to oz. at this point, i would agree that with what david urban said that we have seen barnette kind of hit that high threshold and kind of working their way down with all the attacks and all the revelations, i think it's a very good chance that what we continue to see is we track this is that oz has that little edge and then when you consider there's just a certain amount of people who will turn out and vote for who trump wants, i would give that edge to oz. i also think that oz probably has a good shot in the general election because his crossover appeal is significantly strong with a lot of folks the middle who just kind of like the guy's
6:39 am
tv show. >> okay. and i get the final two cents on this. i think i would have believed that the asen dance of barnette was going to wane, but now i have to say is mastriano's endorsement by trump going to give her, as you've noted, some heft she would otherwise not have had? all i know is i'm left the middle. i'm not liking the choices that i'll be facing in november. conversation for another day. thank you to the three of you. you were excellent. >> thanks, michael. thanks for having me. >> see you guys. >> katherine what do we have from the world of twitter? do you get the impression i can sit here and talk about that election now until the new day show on monday? i believe in closed primaries. why should democrats or republicans let outsiders pick their candidates? it doesn't cost a dime to join a party. stop complaining and pick a side. hey, david, you know, i'm like ronald reagan in new hampshire, i paid for this microphone. i'm paying for that primary.
6:40 am
why shouldn't i have a say? i'm going to be left with this and with this. and me and 1.3 million of my brethren, by the way, according to gallop, 42% of the country are independents. and we get shut out of the process. you want to know why we have the quality of representation that we do is because independents and centrists don't get enough of a say. just saying. still to come, inflation, crime, immigration, putin's unpredictable war and divided country. can joe biden dig himself out of all these accumulating crises. who better to ask david, adviser to, count them, four presidents. don't forget to answer this week's survey question at do you agree with thomas freedman, the u.s. is edging toward a direct war and no one prepared the american people or congress for that?
6:41 am
my moderate to severe plaque psoriasis... the tightness, stinging... the pain. emerge tremfyant®. with tremfya®, most people sa 90% clearer skin at 16 weeks. the majority of people saw 90% cleareskin even at 5 years. seriouallergic reactions may occur. tremfya® may increase your risk of infections and lower your ability to fight them. tell your doctor if you have an infection or symptoms or if you had a vaccine or plan to. emerge tremfyant®. with tremfya®. ask your doctor about tremfya® today. meet three moms who each like to bank their own way. luckily they've all got chase. smart bankers. convenient tools. one bank with the power of both. chase. make more of what's yours. ready to turn your dreams into plans and your actions into achievements? explore over 75 programs and four-week classes at national university.
6:42 am
your future starts today at if you used shipgo this whole thing wouldn't be a thing. yeah, dad! i don't want to deal with this. oh, you brought your luggage to the airport. that's adorable. with shipgo shipping your luggage before you fly you'll never have to wait around here again. like ever. that can't be comfortable though. the smart, fast, easy way to travel.
6:43 am
i got a call from some scammer who had the nerve to ask for my medicare number. i was not born yesterday. when someone asked for my medicare number in a text, i knew it was a scam. nice catch. and, your mother knew it wasn't a real email. go, mom! - i don't share my medicare number with strangers. - if you get a call, text or email - strike! - asking for your medicare or personal information, - delete! - shut it down. - nope! learn more at cal: our confident forever plan is possible with a cfp® professional. a cfp® professional can help you build a complete financial plan. visit to find your cfp® professional.
6:44 am
♪ this is roundup for lawns. this stuff works. this stuff kills weeds down to the root without killing your lawn. this stuff works on dandelions, crabgrass, clover. this stuff works for up to three months. this stuff works guaranteed, or your money back. this stuff works on big lawns, small lawns, and “i guess you can call that a lawn” lawns. this stuff works without killing your lawn. this stuff works without killing your weekend. this stuff works for the rookies and the seasoned pros. this stuff works in knoxville, bronxville, rockville, marysville. this is roundup for lawns. this stuff works. the unknown is not empty. it's a storm that crashes, and consumes, replacing thought with worry.
6:45 am
but one thing can calm uncertainty. an answer. uncovered through exploration, teamwork, and innovation. an answer that leads to even more answers. mayo clinic. you know where to go. as president biden approaches the midterms that historically don't go well for a sitting president. he faces stalled domestic agenda, putin's war, crime, immigration, holding divided party together, what's a leader to do? joining me now cnn's david gergen, former adviser to nixon, ford, reagan and clinton and author of the brand new book "hearts touched with fire:how great leaders are made."
6:46 am
david, so much on his plate. is there a historical analog that comes to your mind? >> no, michael. basically this is the most consequential midterm elections we have seen in my memory. they could heavily shape the course of this country for at least the next six years. so a lot is at stake. as you say, his plate is piled high with crises that he's been unable to resolve here in the past. if you're asking basically what advice would i give this president, i can just tell you i think what he needs to do is to plan for the best but prepare for the worst. that's often true in presidential life, but it's particularly true here. as you say, if things come out really, really well, i think then he can look upon a period of governance that will be good for the next couple years. if he pulls off a big surprise, and they would be surprises if the democrats kept the house and
6:47 am
the senate and increased their margins. that's possible in the senate particularly, that would really give him a lift going into the next two years. on the other hand, if it goes badly, you know, then he's going to be under a lot of pressure himself about whether he's going to continue after the next two years. so, first of all, sort of get that in place. the governance plan in place. secondly, plan how you're going to govern if you win or lose. are you going to call the leadership of both parties to camp david for two to three days to figure it out, what can you get done together? are you simply going to face a lot of hostility over the next couple years and have paralysis in washington which is probably the likely outcome. but beyond that, i think he has to think about his team. who is the team going forward, starting with himself. is he going to -- is he serious about running again or going to take this opportunity to step aside? what does he do? how does he support kamala harris? i think that he has to give her more credit and help her strengthen herself. he'll be under pressure to reshuffle his team if he loses badly. his own team in the white house.
6:48 am
he has to figure that out. but then he has to go to these priorities that you listed. it does seem to me he ought to narrow the list of things he's focus on. do two three things on the domestic thing and couple on the international side. his messaging has been garbled because he has so many balls in the air. it's hard not to be distracted. i think that's really, really important. in terms of the priorities, domestically, he's got to get the inflation, got to get the economy back on track with much lower inflation. he's got to stick with powell, rond reagan stuck with paul voeker back in the 1980s it made a huge difference. we went through terrible times but came out the other side a much stronger country and haven't had an inflation problem since until today. you get that. you have climate. you have equity and fairness to low income and people of color and those issues. but he's also now got two towering issues on the international side. one is ukraine, obviously.
6:49 am
we don't seem to have a strategy. i agreed with tom friedman earlier in your show on ukraine. the critical thing is keep it contained. keep the fight contained within ukraine itself. but the one that i'm even more worried about, though, michael, is the relationship with china and russia. you alluded to this in talking to tom about the question of whether we are edging toward a war. there's a lot of drum beat that you hear out there. he needs to get that turned off. we do not want a war with russia or china. we should not be trying to drive them together in hostility to the united states. so there's a lot there. he has a big agenda ahead. >> david, ron klain should get a cnn transcript of your commentary and show that to the president of the united states. and by the way the only thing we didn't discuss was baby formula, and i think those type of issues are the ones that resonate the most with the public. >> yes. >> good luck on your book. thank you for coming back to the program. >> yes.
6:50 am
thank you, sir. david gergen. still to come more of your best and worst treats and facebook comments. did you go to and vote on the survey question? might i invite you to register for the newsletter. it's free. do you agree with thomas friedman the u.s. is edgin
6:51 am
6:52 am
6:53 am
getting guns off our streets. one democrat's determined to get it done. attorney general rob bonta knows safer streets start with smarter gun control. and bonta says we must ban assault weapons. but eric early, a trump republican who goes too far defending the nra and would loosen laws on ammunition and gun sales. because for him, protecting the second amendment
6:54 am
is everything. eric early. too extreme, too conservative for california. our students, they're our top priority. and students are job one for our superintendent of public instruction, tony thurmond. recruiting 15,000 new teachers, helping ensure all students can read by third grade. the same tony thurmond committed to hiring 10,000 new mental health counselors. as a respected former social worker, thurmond knows how important those mental health counselors are for our students today. vote for democrat tony thurmond. he's making our public schools work for all of us. time to see how you respond to the survey question. do you believe the u.s. is urging twartd a direct war and
6:55 am
no one has prepared the american people or congress for that? here comes the result. pretty close. pretty close. 17,000 and change. 53-47. yes i agree with tom friedman. we're getting close, and woe're not ready. twitter, facebook, youtube. even putin is not stupid enough to attack poland. europe would unite and push his troops back before the u.s. could get there. that makes intuitive sense to me but wouldn't you have said putin is not stupid enough to invade ukraine and yet he did. nothing is i don't think the r realm of possibility. i thought was an interesting conversation i had with tom freedman. i worry that americans will soon take their eye off the ball. that's my chief concern that we'll get back to other
6:56 am
interests and pursuits. thank you for watching. i'll see you next week. raise the jar to all five layers. raise the jar to the best gelato... you've ever tasted. talenti. raise the jar. i have moderate to severe plaque psoriasis. now, there's skyrizi. ♪ things are getting clearer ♪ ♪ yeah, i feel free ♪ ♪ to bare my skin ♪ ♪ yeah, that's all me ♪ ♪ nothing and me go hand in hand ♪ ♪ nothing on my skin, that's my new plan ♪ ♪othing is everything ♪ keep your skin clearer with skyrizi. most who achieved 90% clearer skin at 4 months had lasting clearance through 1 year. in another study, most people had 90% clearer skin at 3 years. and skyrizi is 4 doses a year, after 2 starter doses. ♪ it's my moment ♪ ♪ so i just gotta say ♪ ♪ nothing is everything ♪ skyrizi may increase your risk of infections and lower your ability to fight them. before treatment, your doctor should check you for infections and tuberculosis. tell your doctor if you have an infection
6:57 am
or symptoms such as fevers, sweats, chills, muscle aches, or coughs, or if you plan to or recently received a vaccine. ♪ nothing is everything ♪ talk to your dermatologist about skyrizi. learn how abbvie could help you save. welcome to allstate. where you can bundle home and auto insurance. right, frank? i saved 25%. booyah. and now you're relaxing! we're working from home. save up to 25% when you bundle home and auto with allstate. frank is a fan of fast. he's a fast talker. a fast walker. thanks, gary. and for unexpected heartburn... frank is a fan of pepcid. it works in minutes. nexium 24 hour and prilosec otc can take one to four days to fully work. pepcid. strong relief for fans of fast. life... doesn't stop for diabetes. be ready for every moment, with glucerna. it's the number one doctor recommended brand that is scientifically designed to help manage your blood sugar. live every moment. glucerna. (all): all hail, caesar!
6:58 am
pssst julius! you should really check in with your team on ringcentral. oh hi caesar. we were just talking about you. yeah, you should probably get out of here. ♪ ringcentral ♪ this is roundup for lawns. this stuff works. this stuff kills weeds down to the root without killing your lawn. this stuff works on dandelions, crabgrass, clover. this stuff works for up to three months. this stuff works guaranteed, or your money back. this is roundup for lawns. this stuff works.
6:59 am
what's it like having xfinity internet? it's beyond gig-speed fast. so gaming with your niece, has never felt more intense. hey what does this button do? no, don't! we're talking supersonic wi-fi. three times the bandwidth and the power to connect hundreds of devices at once. that's powerful. couldn't said it better myself. you just did. unbeatable internet from xfinity. made to do anything so you can do anything. whoa.
7:00 am
good morning. it's saturday, may 14th. you're live in the cnn newsroom. >> we are grateful to have do you with us. we want to tell you about ukrainian president zelenskyy. wooes he's welcoming a congressional delegation led by mitch mcconnell. these are some of the first pictures. we know that