tv CNN Newsroom With Fredricka Whitfield CNN December 23, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PST
mom. ♪ hello, everywhere and thank you so much for joining me. i'm fredricka whitfield. we begin with breaking news. president trump names a new acting secretary, tweeting that deputy defense secretary patrick shanahan will begin his new role on january 1st. he takes over for james matic who resigned in protest of the president's decision to pull u.s. troops out of syria and
learned mattis will leave earlier than the expected photoco february 28th date because the president is upset with the extensive coverage of mattis's resignation. the treasury secretary playing clean up after he considered firing the head of the reserve. he realizes he doesn't have the authority to do that. mnuchin calling executives of large u.s. banks after rate hikes and historic market drop, raising concerns about the overall economy. all of this coming as the government shut down shows no signs of ending soon. the president's top negotiators now expect the standoff to go past christmas and likely into the new year. more on the breaking news and the president's new secondiacti
secretary. what do we know about the deputy defense secretary patrick shanahan and how he became the president's pick for the top job now. >> we know that mr. trump became very upset when he began seeing the extensive coverage of the departure of james mattis and his letter of resignation was a total rebuke of mr. trump's military and initial security. mattis's letter is talking about the need to defend allies on the battlefield to take a hard line with countries like russia and china. the president began to see the rebuke very clearly. secretary matic received a phone call from the administration saying he would be gone by january 1st. that puts into place the deputy secretary of defense. who is patrick shanahan?
before he game number two here, he was a long time executive at boeing, a major defense contractor. mr. shanahan having several positions over his 30-year career with a commercial airplane side of the business, the airplanes we travel on and defense and military programs at one point being senior vice president in charge of supply chain and operations. since he came to the pentagon, he has been the inside man, working on budgeting and spending and acquisition reform and innovation. getting that space force, space command going that president trump wants. these are the typical job that is a deputy secretary of defense does. now he will be on the world stage having to deal with adversaries and it will be interesting to see, seen as a stabilizing choice because he is here, but will he be named to be
the permanent secretary of defense for the rest of the trump administration. >> one has to wonder how much this surprised mattis. he said he wanted to stay on until follow 28th to help with the transition of his successor. here is the letter and it said in part, the end day for my tenure is february 28, 2019, a date that should allow sufficient time for a successor to be nominated and confirm and make sure the department's interests are properly articulated to include congressional posture hearings and the nato defense ministerial defense in february. further a transition to a new secretary of defense occurs well in advance of chairman of the joint chiefs of staff in september in order to ensure stability within the department. having that been said, the president making sure it's the deputy defense secretary who
gets that job january 1. is there concern about a smooth transition? >> let's be clear. mattis is going to be gone in a week. for all we know, he might be upstairs here in the pentagon in his office right now packing his boxes. he will be gone in just a few coming days. shanahan will have to take over at the nato ministerial upcoming and have to present the department's multibillion, hundreds of billions of dollars of budget spending to congress. i suspect he will have to rely on general dunford, the chairman of the joint chiefs. don't expect a big public farewell to the troops from jim mattis. we are being told very quietly that mattis planned to essentially fadeaway. he does not want to cause more instability and others are well aware that the troops, the rank and file are unsettled by this and asking a lot of questions.
fred? >> barbara star, thank you so much. let's talk more about this with lieutenant general mark, an army commanding general and a cnn military analyst. also with me, washington bureau chief for the chicago sun times. let me get your reaction to the president naming the deputy secretary of defense january 1 despite the fact that mattis wanted to stay on until the end of february for a smooth transition. what are your >>. >> as barbara so excellently described, that's usually mr. or ms. insight. and the secretary is concerned with dealing with allies. mr. shanahan has not had that kind of experience.
the reason secretary mattis decided to stay until the end of february and stated this, he wanted to do a few more ministerial s being held next month and all the minsters of the defense are going to meet him for the first time and it will be his first time in that kind of world stage. >> how difficult or awkward will that be? >> extremely difficult. some of my former colleagues have been receiving texts and e-mails from other government military and civilian officials since the resignation of the secretary asking me what's going on. they saw secretary mattis as a calming force. they caused a ruckus and secretary mattis would calm people down. he's going to be a tough act to follow not just with military member who is has a 90% approval
rate, unusual for a civilian secretary. with foreign dignitaries and defense minsters around the world, this is going to be tough. what i would say. the president is being pet lent on this, naming this guy and not giving the opportunity to do these ministerials and wrap things up with other foreign leaders. >> we are learning that the president really is making this announcement because he doesn't like the coverage that mattis's resignation is getting and people trying to decipher every word in his resignation letter. will this change the dialogue? >> the dialogue with congress will get tougher so president trump when he nominates someone to be the permanent defense secretary also has to nominate someone to be the permanent attorney general. he has two big potential battles with the senate over those appointees and that will change the dialogue with congress and
probably -- i'm just making a guess, no one has said this, but when the democrats in house come into power, it will be a dialogue-provoking situation when i'm sure that some committee will ask mattis to discuss the circumstances around this resignation or other military-related issues. that will be something that will impact the dialogue. the last thing is, as we are pointing out on this segment, the lack of international relations experience by the actiac acting defense secretary is something not to be ignored with how trump may or may not shape future policy. we know that today trump had another conversation with the turkish leader, erdogan and talking about a slow pull out of troops in syria. if he is going to govern our military movements by tweet and not consult, why would there
be -- we will also be in this dialogue looking to see how shanahan deals with the white house. >> mattis left after protest for the president's decision to pull out u.s. troops of syria. you also have the resignation of the presidential envoy on isis yesterday as well. you have the incoming chief of staff who said the president has no plans about changing his mind on pulling out u.s. troops from syria. take a listen. >> any chance the president changes his mind about this and reverses course? >> no. the president told people from the very beginning he doesn't want us to stay? syria forever. you are seeing the end result of two years's worth of work. >> how does all of this set the stage for shanahan? >> this is what's going to contribute to the chaos, fred. it's interesting that mick mull
vain whoa doesn't have a strong defense or national security background is saying something like that because truthfully all strategies thus far have been based on lessons learned, the poor lessons learned from the obama administration. don't base withdrawals on numbers. base it on a strategy. the president countered his strategy, which was conditions-based in afghanistan and syria when he said let's cut it 7,000 in afghanistan. let's pull everyone out. it has thrown our allies for a loop and those inside the military for a loop. the commanders don't know what's going on as the marine corps come for a visit when marines were asking what's next? he said i truthfully don't know. there are military members confused and diplomats with the resignation who are confused
about what's next. one other thing i need to point out in the pentagon, he was a draw to bring quite a few people and many of the under secretaries and assistant secretaries into the pentagon. they will stay around until the start of the next congress. you will see part two and leave massive suck chest wounds to deal with as the defense department is still trying to do their thing. >> what does it say about the president putting his stock in? john kelly is chief of staff and what happened to trusting his generals? is he showing that now it's the business community where he really feels like he's most comfortable dealing with and
interacting with people with the back ground? >> remember, he said during the campaign he knows more than the generals. now that he's in the position that that foundational belief that the president has been challenged, he said i guess i got the wrong generals around me. i think he moves on to he has to have a comfort level and he doesn't like to feel as though people don't treat him as an intellectual equal. we know this time and again, that is a motivating force when he feels diminished. these are signs they will leave it to psychologists to analyze, as to the security or insecurity of president trump, but i think people have common sense when they see the moves of what a leader does. i think the big take away here is yes, he leans towards the business community now more than the military.
>> all right, thank you so much to both of you. happy holidays. still ahead, treasury secretary steve mnuchin calls the biggest banks and making sure president trump will not fire the head of the reserve. the economy fears show no signs of calming down. what's the strategy heading into the new year? meet the roots. a family with a serious root problem. they see a bit of gray and think... [screams] luckily, there's magic root cover up from looréal. three seconds to flawless roots 3 2 1 ...done! magic root cover up from l'oreal paris. follow l'oreals roots famil_ru. here at snowfest... for your worst sore throat pain, try new vicks vapocool drops. it's not candy. it's powerful relief.
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and enter to win, visit geico.com/bestof. that's geico.com/bestof. take your razor, yup. up and down, never side to side, shaquem, you got it? come on stay focused. hard work baby, it gonna pay off. after the single worst week for the stock market since 2008, the u.s. treasury secretary is trying to convince investors they have nothing to fear. they are talking up the economy and shooting down reports that president trump might try to fire the head of the federal reserve. the president plablames jerome powell for a series of hikes that sent stock markets
plunging. steven moore joins me and he was an economics adviser to candidate trump and it's good to see you, steven. >> hi, fredricka. >> we are six hours before the asian marks open. would the efforts by the secretary allay fears? >> well, look, i think president trump is very frustrated with the fed chairman and there is a big debate raging about whether the president could replace chairman powell and there is different opinions about that. i would say this. if you look at what happened this week, it was triggered by what i think and president trump thinks it was a disaster house increase in interest rates at a time when they should be cutting
rates. the dow fell by 600 or 700 points and kept falling. maybe this chairman is not competent and up for the job. >> now, mr. mulvaney is among those now saying that don't worry about it. the president now knows he is trying to fire powell and it's not a good idea and it's not going to happen. many contributing factors and there is talk about this government shut down and things might be operational again. how much is riding on the actions of the white house at capitol hill to help stabilize things. >> i think the government shut down in the economic event is certainly going to affect the government workers and this is christmas weekend and not a lot of government workers working
over christmas weekend. there is a lot of confidence that this will get resolved after christmas. i hope it does. i don't want to see the government shut down. the other factor, by the way, that i think is much bigger in terms of nervousness is this trade war we are in with china. what i have been telling investors that this is an uncertain situation and they have given 60 days to come forward with a deal. if trump can get a deal and we don't know if that's going to happen, if he could, you would see a boom in the stock market. investors want to see that trade war get resolved in a way where china makes concessions as they should. >> while it is the holiday, you recognize federal workers whether they are working or if they have paid time off, they are among those 800,000 who will not be paid. the government doesn't stop working because of the holiday season.
the political lesson for the president is there, isn't it? if he wants to take credit for a booming market, does he also take the blame when it tanks? >> sure. the president gets the praise when the economy does well and gets the deserved blame when it doesn't do well. what's interesting is we are at the end of 2018. this was the best year for the economy in terms of jobs and the lowest unemployment rate and production and manufacturing. we have seven million more jobs than people to fill them. the growth rate is 3.25. that's way higher than the last 10 years. the real economy is doing well, where as the stock market as done lousy. there is a divergence at the same time. >> happy holidays to you. >> you, too. merry christmas. >> this shut down. bob corker called out the president claiming trump is
picking a fight to score political points. this as the country braces for the shut down and we continue into the new year. details on that next. how about using that pen to sign up for new insurance instead? for drivers with accident forgiveness, liberty mutual won't raise their rates because of their first accident. switch and you could save $782 on home and auto insurance. call for a free quote today. liberty mutual insurance. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪
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just a political act. listen. >> this is a purposefully -- a fight and at the end of the day, our borders will still be insecure. the president could have received $25 billion in border security just by dealing with the dreamers. by the way, most republicans want to deal with the dreamers's issue. we had $25 billion that could have been spent on border security. now the government is shut down over what ultimately will be $2 billion. this is a made up fight so that the president can look like he's fighting, but even if he wins, our borders will be insecure. >> i want to understand this. you are saying that president trump if he wants that money for the border wall and border security, he can get it, but he needs to make a deal and doesn't want to make a deal. am i hearing you correctly?
>> it has to be that. this is like falling off a table. the democrats would support more border security. they said that. 25 of them came to the floor and voted for something that provided $25 billion worth of border security. republicans want to deal with the dreamers. >> sarah westwood live at the white house. what is the president's position? he is there in the white house and he and the vice president said they are working, trying to negotiate. what is the status? >> the white house at the moment is it buckling down for a lengthy shut down lasting days beyond christmas as the president continues demands for funding for the border wall and they are are refusing to fund it. the president requested $5 billion for the border wall and
that had to be for the construction of a physical barrier and said that couldn't be just for border security in general. sources say vice president mike pence offered support for a border security package worth $2.5 billion in a meeting yesterday with senate minority leader chuck shumer who rejected the offer. the talks appear to be at a stand still. mick mulvaney predicted that it could last into the next congress help that begins on january 3rd when the democrats take over. house minority leader nancy pelosi's race for the speakership could be preventing her from being able to make a deal with this administration that would reopen the government. take a listen. >> two weeks ago they offered $1.6 billion for the same thing. they are moving in the wrong
direction. as to whether or not this deal can be cut before the congress comes in. there is an implication for the speakership. she is now in that unfortunate position of being beholden to her left wing where she can't agree with the president on anything until she is speaker. there is a chance we go into the next congress. >> note that he is the incoming chief of staff. trump has been all over the map when it comes to the funding fight and saying he would be proud to own it and attempting to pin the blame on the democrats. it's unclear how much he will be willing to support and what if anything the democrats would be willing to offer. democrats have very little incentive to negotiate on trump's terms given that control of the house will change hands in less than two weeks here. >> thankless so much from the white house. let's talk more about this now.
>> he said nancy pelosi's hands are tied until she gets that speakership job. she has not seemed like she would budge on money for a wall. >> i don't think the director argument makes any sense at all. naps is going to get elected speaker. there is no doubt about that. her hands are not tied at all. what sarah said was right. why would her referage go down? her referage is going up and she will have more power, not less. the administration knows that and they have an incentive to get it done senior rather than later. no one know what is the president is willing to agree with. it's impossible to make a deal. the other thing that they said, there is a political need for
the president to fight this fight. he is using that this shut down as an example to his base. >> even if it is going nowhere and this is political posturing. >> who will be paying for this wall and beyond, the president said it would be mexico. this was the budget director, mick mulvaney on how mexico would be paying for this wall. listen. >> if you ask to the president, he will point to something that didn't get a lot of news. this newus-mexico, canada agreement which is so much better for us than the nafta deal. the government is going to do better and you can make the argument that mexico is paying in that fashion. >> let's just be clear. none of that is mexico paying for the wall. i spent any money at the office of the department of homeland
security. mexico would have to get it from the treasury. >> there is no money from mexico in the trade agreement. >> it's ridiculous and you can see him admitting that in a way by saying we have to get the money from the treasury. in the end, the only thing that will matter is whether or not the president of the united states can point to a wall and say look, i did this. he knows that and he dug in. he is going to lose that battle. he doesn't have power of the purse and he can't force them to build a wall and can't build it without them. that's why he is throwing the temper tantrum now. the whole idea that the shutdowns have real referage, that dissipates the more he uses them. women get used to that and get
normalized to that. it's not moving the democrats. so whether it goes on for four more days or four more weeks, i don't see how the president gets the wall. >> $5 billion and the white house by way of the vice president saying we will come down to 2 preponderance $5 billion. will that make a difference? next, the story making international headlines of hundreds of dead and many more injured after a devastating tsunami hits a popular resort area. why people were caught off guard as the water came crashing ashore. try new vicks vapocool drops. it's not candy. it's powerful relief. ♪ ahhhhhhhhhhhh vaporize sore throat pain with new vicks vapocool drops.
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the tsunami wipes through this concert and other places in indones indonesia. it slammed a popular beach resort and triggered by an under water landslide. at least 222 people have been killed and hundreds more injured and 28 people are unaccounted for. the nation facing a grim recovery effort. >> rescue and recovery is under way. the deadly tsunami floodened
believes and knocked out power and blocked roads. authorities are identifying the victims and helps are treating the injured. the tsunami struck 9:30 saturday evening during a holiday weekend and it is full of tourists. the water broke through a stage while the ind needia pop band, 17, was performing near the beach. the lead singer made this statement on his instagram account. >> i just wanted to say that our bass player and our manager passed away. also my dear wife is still missing. the rest of us have broken bones and minor injuries, including me. but we are fine. >> the tsunami was triggered by
volcanic activity. officials say a full moon and high tide may have made things worse. tsunami warning signals did not go off because officials say it was not an earthquake. rather a landslide caused by the volcanic u rupgz may have triggered the deadly waves. authorities are closely watching the volcano watching for more dangerous eruptions. cnn. >> if you want to help the victims, you can go to cnn.com/impact to find out ways to assist. so much more straight ahead after this.
>> 2018 has proven to be a very busy news cycle in so many categories including politics, po, sports and entertainment. some of the trending stories that captured our attention in 2018. 2018 was the year of the social media activist speaking out against sexual assault, gun violence and racism. #activism proved it's a force to be reckoned with. here are the top eight trending stories of the year. time's up in 2018. on january 1st, a group of women in the film industry unveiled time's up as an anti-harassment action plab, a sequel to the me too reckoning. >> we are just pushing the movement along and doing what we
can with our voices. >> we are here in sol dard with women saying time's up up, enough is enough on the abuse of power. >> the group created the fund to support women to encounter sexual assault and harassment and inequality in the workplace. especially those who lack financial or legal resources. >> now that we have all joined as one voice, it feels like empowerment to the women who never had it. >> do heari iayanny or laurel? two seemingly unrelated words divided the internet in 2018. >> it says laurel. >> play it. hold on. yanny. >> everyone had an opinion.
from law enforcement -- >> what we determined is that the audio sound you have been hearing is actually the name laurel. >> to capitol hill. >> it is laurel and not yanny, all right? how many laurel fans here? thank you. >> in the end, science called a winner. >> if you heard laurel, you are correct. >> like the dress, yanny or laurel served as further proof it doesn't take much to break the internet. >> the amazing pages of spiderman. >> a young migrant living in the shadows, but in the span of 30 seconds, his selfless act of bravery captivated the world. he scaled a four-story building in paris to save a child's life. for his heroism, emmanuel macron
granted him citizenship. he now works with the paris fire brigade. >> a deep sigh of relief after 38 agonizing minutes. with tensions between north korea and the united states running high, people in hawaii got this text. ballistic missile threat inbound to hawaii. seek immediate shelter. this is not a drill. it sent panicked families to seek shelter anywhere they could, with some putting their children in storm brains. within 12 minutes, tulsi gabbard tweeted this was a false alarm, but no word from the governor who admitted he forgot his twitter password. >> what happened today was totally unacceptable. >> it took 38 minutes for them to declare a false alarm. >> number four, a different kind of activism rocked the internet when viral videos exposed racis.
barbecue becky, permit patty, pool patrol paula got the mean treatment after they called police on black people doing everyday things in public places. even starbucks as two black men were arrested for waiting at a store. they apologized and launched employee anti-bias training. number three, professor christine blazzy ford publicly recounting her alleged sexual assault. >> it's hard for me to breathe and i thought that brett was accidentally going to kill me. >> ford accused then supreme court nominee kavanaugh of assaulting her when they were just teenagers. an accusation he repeatedly denied. president trump mocked ford's testimony in a campaign rally. >> how did you get home? i don't remember. how did you get home? i don't remember. where was the place? i don't remember. how many years ago was it?
i don't know. >> in the attack alleged was as bad as she said, charges would have been immediately filed with local law inforcement. the hash tag we believe doctor ford and we believe survivors start eeding as hundreds of thousands of women took to twitter to express solidarity and why i didn't report. thousands fore report feeling shame and powerless after their own experiences of no one believing them. number two, in parkland, florida. marjorie stoneman douglas high school turned the worst things of their lives into a political movement. >> what we need is action. >> students created the never again movement to organize the march for our lives in washington, d.c. which became the most tweeted about movement of all of 2018.
more than $2.5 million was raised via facebook fund-raisers giving barack obama's tweet about the march became the second most liked tweet of the year. and number one, never before has a president used social media quite like this. communicating directly with more than his 57 mill yore followers. from antagonistic tweets about leaders and foes to trafficking in half truths. @real donald trump helped set the tone for the news coverage and political discourse. whether he is blasting the rigged witch hunt of the mueller investigation, calling the media fake news or heaping praise on allies and supporters, the president tweet and retweeted more than 3,000 times in 2018 and is the most tweeted about political figure of the year. >> make america great again.
>> right and the news doesn't stop, next more on our breaking story s. president trump forcing defense secretary mattis out by the new year, already naming a replacement. we will it be a smooth transition? next. aaaaaahhhhhhhh! ballooned your car. call meeeee! (burke) a fly-by ballooning. seen it, covered it. we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪ here at snowfest... for your worst sore throat pain, try new vicks vapocool drops. it's not candy. it's powerful relief. ♪ ahhhhhhhhhhhh
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deputy defense secretary patrick shanahan will begin his new role on january 1st. shanahan taking over for james matic who resigned in protest of the president's decision to pull troops out of syria. cnn learned that mattis will leave earlier than the february 28th day because the president is upset with the extensive coverage of mattis's resignation. all of this coming as the government shut down shows no signs of ending. the president's top negotiators expect the standoff to go past christmas and likely into the new year. we will begin with the president's new acting defense secretary. barbara star joining us now. what do you know about the deputy defense secretary and now soon to be acting defense secretary? >> patrick shanahan is the deputy secretary. he has been the inside guy, if you will, here at the pentagon. a boeing executive for 30 ye