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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  January 12, 2016 5:00pm-6:01pm PST

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>> we need to say that. >> don't screw this thing up, you'll blow a hole in the middle of the nuclear court. >> we'll see if he changes his mind. >> david gergen, thank you very much. thank you all. our special coverage of president obama's final state of the union address starts now. we're following breaking news, as president obama prepares to deliver his last state of the union address. iran has taken ten american sailors into custody. >> we're just learning about some surprises in the president's speech that the white house has kept under wraps. at the white house right now he's preparing for the biggest speech of his last year in office. soon he heads to the capitol to face the nation, and hear the words that remind the world that he's still in charge. mr. speaker, the president of the united states. tonight, barack obama's
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final state of the union address. with a president with more work to do and more fight left in him. >> we do have to feel a sense of urgency about it. >> he's raising to. >> we have an agenda, and we know it works. >> grappling with urgent threats to america's security. >> we cannot and will not succumb to fear. >> and competing with the spotlight of the candidates who want his job. >> it's all talk. >> i don't think president obama gets the credit he deserves. >> this is cnn's coverage of the state of the union address, the republican responsible, and the issues dominating the presidential campaign. >> i actually think i'm a pretty good president. i think if el ran, i could win. >> the first votes of 2016 are less than three weeks away, the final obama state of the union address is just minutes away, and the president's legacy is
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right on the line, right now. a big night here in washington. at the white house right now president obama facing a new enter national crisis, a major distraction to say the least, as he heads to the capitol to deliver his last state of the union address. we're less than an hour away, and his at mrgts is scrambling to deal with the potentially flash point between the united states and iran. u.s. officials say iran has seized two navy ships in the persian gulf, taking ten sailors on board into custody. the ships apparently enter iranian water for a brief period of time. barbara starr has more on the breaking story. what is the latest, bauer ra? >> good evening. we have told by senior
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administration officials now there is a plan for the u.s. sailors to be transferred back to the united states at first light, that iran plans to let them go, but would not do it during the hours of darkness, the iranian navy typically doesn't operate at night. not very safe procedures there. so at first light we expect the sailors to be brought out into the middle of the persian gulf and transferred to a u.s. navy warship in international waters. it is not clear whether the u.s. will get these two small patrol craft that the sailors were on. we will be waiting to see what happened at first light. anderson? >> barbara, we're going to follow that closely. of course there's questions tonight whether the president should tweak his address. wolf blitzer, i spoke with the white house communications director. what did she have to say? >> jen psaki said there's no plans to change the address. of course that could change.
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the iran nuclear deal he considers to be a major accomplishment. jake tapper is with us. why did he avoid discussing in the address the ten americans? >> there's a couple reasons. one of them according to a white house official with whom i spoke, is they do not see this event as having a hostile intent. they say that the sailors are being well treated and we have received assurance they will be released. so that's their view. perhaps it's spin, but that's on the face why they say they're not going to include this in the speech. we have heard calls from the republicans, including the house speaker paul ryan to update the american people on the status of these sailors, but as of now, the white house does not seem to feel that that's necessary, pap it would be elevating the situation, exacerbating. it is a somewhat embarrassing and unfortunate event to be
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happening. jim scuitto, the president certainly doesn't want to aggravate the situation, make it worse for the ten sailors, nine men, one woman. >> no question. there's the state of the union address tonight, and if a few days we have expected the implementation of his signature iran nuclear deal, which he is expected to tout tonight. if they are held for days, paraded on iranian television, all bets are off, but they do have a plan to return them tomorrow. if that goes forward, this deal will go forward. keeping in mind to this point iran has kept its obligations under this deal. it's sent 90% of the enriched urannium out of the country to iran as provided by the deal. it's begun to de, the plant. we'll have implementation sometime on the weekend and that means lifting of all the punishing economic sanctions. >> jim, thank you very much. anderson, there's more
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breaking news. >> that's right. on president obama's speech itself, i want to bring in correspondent jim acosta. what have you learned? >> anderson, i'm told by white house officials and democratic officials that the president will push back on the rhetoric from republican candidates on the campaign trail in his state of the union address tonight, and it won't be hard to figure out who the president is talking about. in a memo on tonight's speech shared by a democratic source with cnn, the president has been struck by the, quote, doom and gloom peddled by republicans. the white house says president obama will instead offer an optimistic vision of the future, if compromise remains a dirty word in washington, we're told the president will say the louder more extreme voices will prevail. judging by what democratic and white house sources are telling us president obama will call on all american toss reject the politics of donald trump. it could be quite dramatic. >> we'll wait for that, jim. when president obama takes any jabs at republicans tonight, as
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jim was just talking about. marco rubio will be in the audience listening. dana bash is with ruby on capitol hill right now. dana? >> that's right, anderson. thank you, senator for joining me. let's start with what jim acosta was just reporting, that the president will take a thinly veiled swipe at donald trump, talking about the peddling of doom and gloom, warning that even the republican giving response, nikki haley, from your side, is going to talk about the siren call of angriest voices. do they have a point? >> the point is that americans are frustrated after seven years of barack obama. they say they don't even recognize their own country. whether it's our economy or standing in the world, this is being reflected. what i've said is it's important to acknowledge that frustration, but also understand if we do what needs to be done, this country has a chance to be
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greater than it's everen. >> is it too hot on the campaign trail? >> they elections get that way. we have a vibrant republic and these are important issue that is people are upset about. our economy is not producing good paying jobs. america's standing has diminished under this president. we're going to change this as soon as i take over. >> let's talk about the breaking news, and that is ten sailors detailed. you want earlier you think this is a symptom of the iran nuclear deal. why is that? >> first of all, i believe they can test this president. they're going to continue to test this president. i don't know about this particular case, but what i said tonight is if they release the sailors right away and release the boats, we'll know it was a misunderstanding. if they do not -- i hope they will, but if they do not, this is a clearly a further provocati provocation. >> do you think the president should address this? >> ultimately he should be cautious about how he addresses it until the situation works itself out. that being said, it should be
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abundantly clear that these sailors need to be released immediately. >> three republican senators running for president. you're the only one in town not on the campaign trail. why did you think it was important to come? >> look, at the end of the day, this is one of the things that the constitution asks the president to do, come before congress and opine about the state of the union. i thought it was important to be here. we also had some important intelligence briefings that i needed to attend earlier in the day. we'll see what the president says tonight. i doubt very much at the change the trajectory. >> and has nothing to do with the fact you've been hit by your old mentor jeb bush for not being here enough? >> there is votes i will miss, but i'm missing them because i'm running for president and trying to turn this country around. >> ted cruz, he, as you know is being hit by donald trump. john mccain, even questioned by
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his former law professor lawrence tribe, about whether or not he is eligible to be president. >> he is eligible to be president. it's a total nonissue. we should be focused on what matters here, and that is which republican can win this nomination and turn this country around. >> he is eligible, you think, but do you believe it is settled? do you think that if he is the nominee it could end up being tied up in courts look, anyone can take you to court. the bottom line is -- you can only by naturalized or natural born. he wasn't naturalized. it's a nonissue. if donnell wants to spend his time talking about it, but i want to focus on the future of this country. >> you're a lawyer. is it settled? >> yes. >> thank you. our chief national correspondent john king, michael mer conish, gloria borger and david axelrod. david, you've been in the white house in these rooms when
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last-minute changes are made. take us into the room. what's the debate going on? >> well, i've always been in room when incidents like this were being discussed in which officials in the room have a lot more information than they can share with the country. i'm sure that's factoring into the decision. i don't think think they want to inflame the situation as being resolved or elevated beyond its importance. >> it couldn't be the worst timing, right before his speech, but just before iran is supposed to get some sanctions. >> talk about stepping on your message. this evening is supposed to be a large speech, and i think it will be a large speech. the last thing the president of the united states wants to do is talk about something that gives republicans an opening to say you know what? the nuclear deal is a disaster, which they're saying, by the way, but he also doesn't want a
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reaction from the audience, republican side of the aisle, about iran. i'm sure he'll get it to a certain degree, but this may add to the raucous nature of the republican response, when he mentions that deal as an achievement in his administrati administration. >> michael, are you surprised? earlier david gergen was saying he's got to talk about the sailors. >> i think he'll be derelict in his duty if he doesn't make a passing reference to it. i understand that in the scheme of things it might not warrant mention in a state of the union address, but for the fact that a speech is tonight. i don't know he can reference the iranian deal without saying something about the return of these individuals tomorrow. we have ten americans potentially in harm's way. he needs to say something. >> it's an awkward moment for the president. even marco rubio there, breaking news, a voice of reason in the heat of a campaign, says you have to be careful. let's make sure it's resolved
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before we start saying provocative things, yet every state of the union message has a tribute to the men and women who serve. he does want to celebrate his iran nuclear deal, which the republicans all oppose. the president wants to say no, it's the right past forward, and more broadly, you said bad timing, i think that's the right way to view this. the president wants people to feel better. he wants to talk about the world in which they're nervous about terrorism, isis, some are nervous about this iran deal. he wants to say trust me, i know it's scary, but i'm making progress. two thirds of american people think the country is on the wrong track, the president wants to say it's better. >> can a speech lick this, though, really make a difference in terms of trying to reset the record? >> i think it can set the tone of the debate moving forward. i think that's what he wants to do. yes, i think there will be a reckoning with his record, and
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where we were when he took office and where we are today. i think he'll tell that story, but i think he wants to shape the debate moving forward, not just for this election, but beyond. that's what they have signaled. where do we need to go on the economy some where do we need to go on our approach to national defense and security? where do we need to go in terms of climate change? >> and they still have time to put in something about the sailors. tonight much more on the breaking news. plus the president's speech billed as a broad vision for the final year. a lot more surprises than originally thought, and the comments democrats are talking about. joe biden talked candidly about hillary clinton's campaign troubles. now she's defending her credibility, both of them speaking tonight right here on cnn. ♪ there it is... this is where i met your grandpa. right under this tree.
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from later tonight. and the president will talk more about the things he wants to do in the year heard. jim acosta has more on the breaking news in the speech. what are you learning, jim? >> that's right, wolf. the president will once again demand that congress raise the minimum wage, fix the immigration system, make college more affordable. in a, joe biden who lost his son to cancer last year, the president wants a moonshot-style mission to cure cancer. he will urge to stick to the dock string, which is described as a new american nationalism based on patience, discipline, leading with our partners, and will point to the nuclear arms deal, though that will be a tougher sell tonight. >> there will be, jake tapper, some specifics in the speech tonight, knolls just a robust overview. >> that's right, though the speaker of the house paul ryan has said nothing will be done on
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immigration reform under 2017, but i think what we're seeing here with president obama, as he has described himself, he does not want anyone in his white house to say when they leave, we had some ideas that we didn't even try to do. so you're going to see president obama really strongly trying not to be a lame duck, trying to be somebody who is constantly out there urging congress to do things and taking executive actions. we have seen, as jim just said, some of the things he wants to talk about, in terms of college affordability, i think we'll hear more about everyone being part of the economy. >> he wants some unfinished business he wants to discuss. anderson, back to you. one of the his top goals is to hand the keys to the white house obviously to a fellow democrat. breaking today, new polls showing bernie sander has ahead
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of hillary clinton, and has widened his lead in new hampshire. two news-breaking interviews, gloria borger asked vice president biden about clinton's campaign struggles, and he gave a surprisingly candid assessment. >> why is she having trouble? >> i think that bernie is speaking to a yearning that is deep and real, and he has credibility on it. and that is the absolute enormous concentration of wealth in a small group of people with the middle class now being able to be shown being left out. >> hillary clinton responded to biden's remarks today, sitting down for an exclusive interview with our alison camarata. >> look, i have working towards closing the gaps between people,
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poor people and well-off people primarily all my adult life. i went to work for the children's defense fund. i helped to reform the education system in arkansas. i was a legal services lawyer defending poor people. i went to work to try to make sure that we got health care in the beginning of my husband's administration because of the so many people who were left out and were uninsured. i have been on this issue in many different ways. >> former -- i should point ute you'll see the complete interview on "new day" tomorrow morning. i want to bring in van jones, and amanda carpenter, democratic strategist paul begala, and mike rogers. it was interesting to hear biden say that bernie sander hayes credibility, obviously the implication is that hillary clinton does not. he said she just hasn't been talking about it quite as long
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as bernie sanders has. >> it's been -- something is happening in the democratic party which i think the mainstream media has been missing. this sanders surge is a real thing. >> he's not going away, at least not in iowa and new hampshire. >> certainly not. part of what you are seeing is that it looks like hillary clinton has built a good machine. bernie sanders is building a movement. she has the heads of all the grass tops. he hayes the hearts of the grassroots and you have a real fight shaping up. and you see her punching back, and it looked for a moment biden leaned in sanders' favor. >> but paul, obviously you support a hillary clinton super-pac, right? >> i advise the super-pac that supports hillary. i'm not undecided. >> in the interview with alison tonight, she was saying, look, we have a long game. we have a lot of other states behind iowa and new hampshire, we have a good ground operation, but when you look at the numbers, it's not going the
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right direction. >> no, she could easily lose iowa and new hampshire to bernie sanders and still win the nomination handily. >> bill clinton lost iowa -- >> and new hampshire, and became the nominee. you don't is have to run the table in this business. you have to get just enough to secure the nomination, but bernie is running a great campaign. he deserves the credit he's getting. by the way, neither he nor hillary are running on insults, but ideas. they have a little rub, hillary clinton doesn't like his record on gun, and he doesn't like her record on economics or something. obviously i'm a hillary democrat, but as a democrat none of this stuff is upsetting me. all of this stuff we can run on in november 2016. >> chairman rogers, a., do you believe that? and b -- first of all, do you believe that? >> no, i don't. here's the problem i think you see brewing in the democrat party, and obviously as an elect
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ive -- 52% of self-identified democrats believe a socialist economic system is acceptable to them. bernie sanders is tapping into that. this is no longer an anomaly for the democratic party, this is a wing of the democrat party that is getting traction, which is a socialist democrat perspective. >> i just want to jump in with dana bash. she has a guest. >> it was actually the secretary of state john kerry walking by. i asked him the latest with the sailors who are detained in iran, which we of course has been reporting on the breaking news. he said he understanding they will be released very soon. i said, how soon? he said, very soon and had to run to go into the house chamber. that was just happening moments ago. chairman rogers, what do you think. do you think the president should make a comment about this speech, given that dana is just reporting that the secretary is saying very soon? >> part of it is you don't want
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to raise it to the presidential level. >> that's right, but secondly we have a problem here. the secretary of state should not say it's going to be soon, real soon. we need to have the secretary of state engaged in this issue right now. in fact i'm not sure i would have him at this speech. if you don't want to mention it at the speech, have your secretary of state guaranteeing the release of those sailors. this notion that it happens at night and can't be done safely is absolute hooey. this should be done, done immediately and i think every level of our government should be applied to, including you're secretary of state. if the president doesn't mention it, but -- >> we have to ache a very quick break, but amanda, very briefly, do you think hillary clinton is in trouble? >> absolutely. i think it's the legacy of president obama nonto deal with iran, but the three big things for me in foreign policy under obama and clinton are iran, isis and the rise of russia.
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they have become much more aggressive in those years and that's something that hillary clinton would have to answer for. the president will depart the white house for a quick drive to the capitol. we'll see if he has anything to say on his way over. and what is it like in a private lunch with the president? apparently there's some yelling now and then. details ahead. right now,
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white house, on a momentous night for him and his administration. he will head to the capitol soon to report on the state of the union for the final time. we're about to get our first glimpse in the house chamber tonight, members of the house and other officials are gathering. we just saw secretary of state walk in tonight you can weigh in on the remarks in real time. just go to cnn.com/pulse, and click agree or disagree. the results will look like this with lines going up and down, railroadses republicans, democrats and independents. we'll show you the high and low points, and also an instant telephone poll of americans who watched the president's speech. let's go back to wolf. thank you very much, anderson. jake, members of the united states supreme court are coming in right now. quickly they're walking right ban you, dana, in statuary hall. >> they are, and not the way we
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usually see them. they're not wearing their robes. justice breyer, how are you? we saw elena kagan walk by, and the chief justice john roberts, all looking like they're with their families or spouses, ruth bader ginsburg is coming -- in addition to sonia sotomayor. justice, nice to see you. how are you? >> fine. >> reporter: again we're not used to seeing them come down without their robes, but it seems as though maybe they're going to get their attire on back in a room over by the house. i just know in the past they have put their formal attire on before they walk down. here's the vice president as
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well as the majority leader. mr. vice president, how are you? what do we know about the iran situation? >> i think it will turn out well. >> reporter: soon? i'm not sure if you could hear that, but the vice president just said i think it will turn out well when i asked about the iran situation. he obviously knew what i was talking about. we now have all the senators coming down. how are you? >> how are you? >> reporter: nice to see you. one thing i want to note -- hi there -- senator lindsey graham and bob menendez, a democrat and republican. a lot of these senators walking down hand in hand from different parties. this is not something that we saw -- hi there -- that we saw, you know, even a couple years ago or few years ago when i was covering the state of the union. it used to be a very partisan affair, but actually since gabby giffords, a former congresswoman, was shot, she inspired members of congress to
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get together and cross party lines and go to this address, even though it is an incredibly partisan chamber right now, they're still walking in in a bipartisan wand. >> i just want to do interrupt for a moment, dana. you had a chance to question secretary of state john kerry about the ten american sailors being held. we have the exchange you had with the secretary. i want to play it for our viewers. >> reporter: secretary, what do we know about the u.s. sailors in iran? >> we are told it should be resolved very soon. very soon. >> how soon? >> very soon. >> reporter: can you stop for one more second? we weren't on the air. could you come over here for one second? okay. >> dana doing an excellent job. and jake she also got the vice president of the united states as well. >> two on the record comments from senior administration officials about this crisis. now we can look into the chamber and see the vice president there
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walking in, greeting members of congress, behind him mitch mcconnell. >> and john cornyn of texas right behind mitch mcconnell. this is an opportunity where some of those members, and jake, you know this, they've been there, they wait hours and hours along the aisle just to get a chance to be there, to be seen to shake hands with the vice president, later with the president. >> obviously this is an interesting and important night. this will be very momentous for president obama, his very last state of the union address, but let's take a moment here and think about vice president joe biden, who is in that chamber as a member of the senate for decades, for decades. this will be his very last state of the union address in any capacity, as far as we can tell, having decided that he is not going to run for president in 2016. so this has got to be a night
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full of tremendous emotion for him, especially having had the kind of year that he's had, losing his son beau. that will be referred to if not specifically at least obliquely by president obama, we're told, by his push for more funding for cancer research. what a momentous night for the vice president. >> and every time all the members of the cabinet, vice president, they're all in the same building in the u.s. house chamber, there has to be one member of the cabinet who is what they called the designated survivor. jim acosta, you have now learned who that is? >> reporter: jeh johnson will not be in attendance. he has been designated as the cabinet member who is not attending so there would be a continuity of leadership, given an interesting choice, given the
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anxietying on the u.s. homefront about terrorism. >> it's a tradition that i believe dates back to the cold war, when it was believed that the fears of the soviet union lobbing a nuclear missile at the capitol was possible. nowadays we have different threats. when you look back at previous survivors, they have to meet the constitutional requirements -- there's been a lot of debate on the republican side of the aisle in the presidential race about constitutional eligibility for candidates. >> by the way, that shot we're showing in the upper right-hand corner of the screen is the white house. we're going to see the president and the first lady momentarily leave the white house and make that short drive down pennsylvania avenue from the white house to the u.s. capitol. we'll have live coverage of that. in the meantime, the vice president -- there's their -- it looks like they're having a good
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time there on the house floor, jake. i want to quickly go to jeff zeleny, who is our senior washington correspond. you're getting more information on the president's address, jeff? >> reporter: sure, wolf, i am. one thing that the president is going to talk about is amplify hi call to change the culture of guns in america. of course, he talked about this last week in the town hall meeting with anderson. one of his great frustrations of his time in office is not being able to pass any type of gun control legislation. he tried in 2013 after newtown. so he's going to call on congress again tonight to do that. not with any new legislative action, i'm told, but going to renew his call to democrats in the chamber in particular, saying he and the white house are not going to support them if they do not get behind this. that may be uncomfortable for one democrat in particular, that could be senator sanders, of course, who is running for president.
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he's been under assault from hillary clinton on this very issue here, so we'll be looking at senator sanders when president obama talks about gun control tonight, wolf. >> there's the vice president, you just saw him with the democratic minority leader in the house, nancy pelosi there on the house floor. there would be a new individual standing and sitting behind the is that, jake, the new speaker of the house, paul ryan. we were at a breakfast with him this morning, and he was joking about the looks he's going to have to give, knowing the cameras are on him and the vice president almost at all times sitting behind the president. >> he said he did not have a particularly good poker face. in other words, president obama was going to be saying a lot of things that he anticipated he would be disagreeing with and speaker ryan says he's irish and he's used to being full of expression, his face, and he was going to have to work on that. speaker boehner, his predecessor was pretty good at having a
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poker face and not expressing disapproval too noticeably. >> he took over for john boehner. this will be paul ryan's first state of the union address. this will be the last state of the union address for the vice president joe biden. they're going to be doing some formalities now, jake, introducing escort committees for the president, for example. it's one of the standard protocol procedures, and they'll be introducing lots of other dignitaries coming in. let's talk about, if we can, for just a minute, for the preparation for this night, the speech itself. president obama typically starts thinking about the state of the union address in the fall, what he wants to say, how he wants to lay out his vision for the next year. the white house says that president obama and his staff have been working specifically on the speech, putting pen to paper, since december. as we know, president obama likes to use the long legal pads. they've been working on the
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speech during the holidays. all of the president's speechwriters always say that he is constantly rewriting, constantly adding his own flourishes, his own language, trying to introduce statements that you don't necessarily here in a political speech. >> momentarily the president and first lady will be leaving the white house. there you see the south lawn brass to the white house. they'll be driving up to capitol hill. anderson, back to you. >> wolf, thanks very much. we want to bring in our panel here, david, michael, gloria and john. david, you were talking about this is a chance for the president to begin talking about the legacy, set the discussion moving forward not only for this upcoming election, but for the time when he leaves office. do you think he has met the goals that he set for himself? >> i think he's set many of the goals he set for himself. he spoke during the campaign -- first of all he came to the office in the midst of an economic catastrophe, so the
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first mission was trying to right the economy. we've had 70 straight months of job creation. i think he takes great pride in that. but when you look at health care, financial reform, the advancement in gay rights, the fact that we had 180,000 troops overseas and now we have 10 in harm's way, those kinds of things are a sort of great pride to him. he signaled in the speech he's going to talk to one great disappointment, which is the environment in this town, in washington, is at least as difficult as it was before he arrived in the white house. and that, i think, is a source of great disappointment to him. >> i think the question is whether the president had anything to do with that. i would argue he came into washington with two goals -- to be transformational and to be unifying. i think he met one of those goals in many ways, whether you like what he's done or don't like what he's done, he's done a lot. whether it's through legislation
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or executive action, but he hasn't been unifying. he's going to talk about that tonight. >> yeah. >> but the question is how much of the blame does he bear? you know, i asked the vice president about this, and the vice president said, you know, they had it out for him kind of when he came here, but i would argue this was a president with a very steep learning curve. >> gloria, i want to interrupt, we are seeing some movement from the white house. the doors are open. not much time, it's a short drive obvious lip from the white house. there's the president and the first lady. >> hi, guys. >> how are you doing, sir? >> good. >> asked by a reporter by the comments on iran, no answer there from the president. we'll see if he decides to mention it in his speech. based on sources he talked to, jake tapper said they do not plan at this point to bring it in, but go ahead, gloria. >> no, i just think that the question is how much of the blame does the president share on this? i would argue he made his choice
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to be transformational. he went for that change, but he couldn't do both. >> look, i think there's some blame to go around, but it is -- i'm not here to speak for him. i think history will -- >> go ahead. >> he's going to speak for himself in a few minutes. history will record he met with an immutable kind of opposition in congress. i think a strategic decision was made to -- certainly on health care, and that sort of spiralled into the situation that we find ourselves in today. >> it looks like michelle obama is on her -- i don't know if she uses a blackberry or iphone. it looks like the president may be looking over some papers or perhaps the speech itself. john king, you know, when you stand in front of the magic wall on election night, how that is the electoral changed under this president? >> it's a great question. in some way we live in two americas.
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he has tilted the this is map in favor of the democrats, and whoever the nominee is will start with a slight advantage. part of the way the obama campaign worked, adding in indiana, north carolina, colorado states that had been red, indiana went back in the second campaign, north carolina did as well, but they proved the democrats can play in places where they didn't before. but look below that. the obama years have been wonderful for the republican party at every level except the presidency. more than 900 legislative seats have changed hand. that's the bench, future governors, future congressmen, the republicans now have the house and bigger majority after 2014. the democrats had it when the president came to office. when you look at that map of red america, it's stuns, and republicans have 32 of the
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governorships. they just gave one back. so it's sandiant. the question is in this national political environment, you know, the president wants to keep the advantage for the democrats in the national election. one of the reasons you have seen some senior house democrats retiring in recent days is the democrats don't think they're getting the house back -- >> imto bring in michael mer conish, because i want to hear what you're hearing from your listeners. but i want to find -- and some of these meetings, let's listen to vice president biden. >> when he asked me to do this at first, asked me to be considered, i want no, i didn't want to do it. he said, well, think it over. so from the very beginning we made an agreement that we would once a week have lunch. i spent five, seven hours a day with him beyond that on average, but that we would be able to holler at each other, tell each
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other we're angry. >> do you? >> we do, and we have. i swear to god. i knew he meant what he said. he is a man who knows who he is, and he's strong. what cemented these circumstances for us over time was where we disagreed and we would holler at each other or really take each other on at lunch, we always were able to walk out and go back to work. >> is there a moment you're going to remember with the president? >> i was having lunch with the president, and i said, you know, my concern is, i said if beau resigns, there's no -- nothing to fall back on, his salary. i said, but i worked it out, but jill and i will sell the house, we'll be in good shape. he said, promise me you won't sell the howl. he's going to be mad at me saying this. he said, i'll give you the money, whatever you need.
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his love of family and my love of family and my love of his family, you know, it's really, it's personal. it's family. >> you can hear those remarks from the vice president. i have not heard before, michael -- there's some procedural things happening, that's the sound you hear of paul ryan reading out some names. michael, what are you hearing from your listeners in terms of this president's legacy, what they give him credit for, and disappointments? >> he's been effective in selling himself and his record, but not so effective outside of the electoral cycle. it occurs to me if the metrics were the name as they are, but mitt romney had been elected. if i filled my tank and paid $2.15, if the unemployment rate were 5%, and it is, if the dow were at 16,000, where it ended 13,000 back in 2012, people would be saying, look at romney,
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he's an immense success. all we need to do do is get rid of that guy obama. that's what the data is, but he doesn't seem to get credit for it. for whatever reason, there's a funk. to responsible to the question about the listeners, they feel there's a funk. they're not feeling as if they're for real. >> don't you think it's because they don't feel it in their paychecks? >> no, i think there's a climate of negativity that's been so pervasive and so spun, they can't accept reality when the news is good. >> they're not mutually exclusive. >> there's factors that play a role, but i think he is the face of change in this country. he is a transformational figure, not just in what he's done, but in who he is. there are people in this country who simply don't feel comfortable with that. >> but the yearning for change, if you look at the metrics and data and seeing what's happening in the campaign to replace him, the yearning is high, if not high other, in the way trump is
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the new obama. republicans -- vote owes last time wet for the thoughtful professorial change, who said he would change by working with the republicans. trump says i'm going to break every piece in china in washington and republican voters are responding to that. the success of bernie sanders at the moment isn't just because of hillary clinton's weaknesses. he's taping into the anger and desire for change. >> i want to bring in chairman rogers. you have obviously lodge experience vice president biden said something to gloria borger in that interview about what they view as intransigence of the republicans. do you think that's value? >> no, my gosh, this was the hardest administration to work with, for somebody who wanted to work with this administration. >> hard why? >> nonengaging, noninterested. i probably met with george w. bush as a rank-and-file member of the intelligence committee in
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the oval office, one on one, probably four to six times in his tenure, in a broader group in the situation room, in the eisenhower probably probably another dozen times. never hand with this president. we tried to work with this president. this is a two-way street. this president, for whatever reason, decided he does not like this animal he decided was congress. i think he started out that way, he governed that way and had huge problems. it's not just me, mike rogers, republican members of contingencies. i had mo-- congress. so this notion that it was a republican problem up front is wrong. >> quickly, and then we have to go. >> i see it differently. some people wanted more personal engagement, but part of what was going on, was from the beginning a decision that was made, and mcconnell said it openly. you said people saying it
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openly, we want this guy to fail. in that environment when you're trying to wind down two difficult wars and jump-start an economy, you expect a little more of a hand reaching across. i think we do live in two different americas. so many democrats were frustrate that had obama seemed more interested in reaching out to republicans than reaching out to his own base. so you have two different stories. >> i was in that congress. i didn't see any of that, none of that. >> i want to go back to wolf and jake as the president approaches capitol hill. >> we see the motorcade, anderson, now arriving up to capitol hill. the president and the first lady will be getting out of that limousine. they'll be going inside, jake. i also want to remind our viewers, as we await the president walkses in, i want to tell our viewers more about our insta-digital response. this is a unique feature we have, tom. >> as we're watching the
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reaction in the chamber, we will also be watching your reaction at home. hop online, go to cnn.com/.. we've paired up with microsoft, and moment by moment as the president's speech goes on, can you tell us if you agree or disagree with what he says, and at the end of the night we'll show you where the people agreed and did not agree. it's quite an interesting experiment. cnn.com/pulse. jake, the president spends -- you know, you're a former white house correspondent -- spends an enormous amount of time preparing this speech. >> and niche to the speech is who will the guests be of the first lady? as you know, wolf, since 1982, when president reagan honored a government employee who had rescued somebody in a airplane crash, lenny skutnik, the
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president has skutniks, as they're called, to highlight bravery, to say thanks, to honor troops, also sometimes it's people who are there to make a political point of some sort. president obama has said there will be an empty chair in the first lady's box that will represent victims of gun violence who are not able to speak for themselves. many members of congress also getting political, making a point. the speaker of the house has said he will have the little sisters of the poor as a guest. they are currently suing the obama administration because of the contraception mandate in the obamacare bill and congressman gutierrez has had the president of illinois of planned parenthood to be his guest. >> when you speak about the special guests in the gallery,
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mana raju, set the scene for us. >> reporter: this is an interesting time for paul ryan, trying to introduce a different face for a his party, sort of trying to take this away from sort of that harsh rhetoric we're hearing from the campaign trail. a lot of these members of congress, including paul ryan are bringing guests that would under score the message, also a reverend from racine, wisconsin, who has battled with poverty and drug addiction, other members as well, who have -- people who have long fought the poverty issues. this will be an interesting moment for ryan and the republican party, whether they can set the agenda and sort of take it away from the campaign trail and showcase themselves as a party of big ideas. we'll see how they deal with the president's speech here, wolf.
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interesting. they've just introduced members of the dean of the diplomatic corps, jake, now the supreme court members, the justices who want to come, they are about to be introduced and not all nine attend. >> a good reminder the next president will appoint two or three likely supreme court justices. ruth bader ginsburg, who has had health problems, says she is not going to step down before the end of the obama presidency, because she does not think the president has currently enough political capital to get a progressive jurist in there to replace her. >> justice scalia has skipped this 20 times in a row, he's called it a juvenile spectacle. clarence thomas sis it's become too partisan to be comfortable for a judge. dana, you're there in statuary hall, what are you seeing? >> i have a lot from behind
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where you guys are looking, the supreme court, at least the members we saw here, i think we saw five, maybe six, lined up in their robes, waiting for their names to be called. the fact that the members of the supreme court are here, and i'm can actually looking at them down the hall. can you get a sense of how close we are, that's where the house chamber is, and also where the president is going to walk in and hear that call for the last time. >> also interesting, jake, that congresswoman and democratic national committee chair, debbie wasserman schultz and keith ellison, they have urged their fellow democrats to bring a muslim as their guest, and we're told about 20 members of congress have said they are in fact bringing muslim guests include al franken, bringing a local deli owner from minnesota. now we see the chief justice and
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other members of the supreme court walking in. >> there's john roberts, the chief justice of the united states right there in his robe. we saw them walking in without their robes earlier. anithen kennedy often the swing vote in a lot of these cases. >> el lena kagan and songia sotomayor, and justice breyer who comes every single year. remember last year ruth bader ginsburg had her eyes closed during part of the address. the cabinet with the exception of jeh johnson, they will be introduced as well. they will be walking in. jeh johnson is what they call the designated survivor. he is not there, but in the gallery, the first lady, michelle obama is walking in, with a nice round of applause. she has a bunch of special guests as well.
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>> the first lady remains incredibly popular. the politics go back and forth. there he is hugging the second lady, jill biden. she is very popular, and according to the president, probably also excited to leave the white house. >> there she is, she drove over with the president of the united states. dr. jill biden is right there. they're all applauding. there will be an empty chair there tonight as well, the deliberately wanted an empty chair for the victims of gun violence. >> that's right. governor malloy is also there, somebody who's also been very active in the push for -- >> here come the members of the
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cabinet. that's the secretary of the treasury jack lew. there's john kerry. members of the cabinet walking into the house chamber right now to listen to the president's state of the union address. once again we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. the president is about to deliver his last state of the union address, it comes in an awkward moment. ten sailors are being held in iran. the vice president and the secretary of state have told our dana bash they expect those ten sailors to be released fairly soon. there's a bit of tension as we await the release of these sailors. it's been an awkward moment clearly for the president and his address. certainly not something they wanted to deal with