tv Inside Politics CNN February 14, 2016 5:30am-6:01am PST
spoke, the senate majority leaders said the vacancy should be filled by the next president. the republican candidates, well, they agree. >> i do not believe the president should appoint someone, and it's not unprecedented. in fact, it's been over 80 years since a lame-duck president has appointed a supreme court justice. and it reminds of this. how important this election is. >> and so i believe the president should not move forward, and i think that we ought to let the next president of the united states decide who is going to run that supreme court with a vote by the people of the united states of america. >> the democratic candidates, though, say it is president obama's choice. hillary clinton put it this way. >> it is outrageous that republicans in the senate and on the campaign trail have already pledged to block any replacement that president obama nominates. >> again, with us to share their reporting and insights, julie pace, manu raju, ryan lizza and
jackie kucinich of the daily beast. the republicans say this has never happened, that n part because we haven't had retirements or deaths in election year. there was a vote in 1988 of justice kennedy. the hearings had been conducted. most of the work had been done and then they had the vote in the election year. that was a democratic senate, though, giving a republican president his pick in an election year. can president obama use that against the republican senate now, saying it's not exactly analogous, but our guys gave one to you. it's your turn to step up? >> i think he'll try to some degree because it is probably the closest precedent that we have here. >> politics were a little different back then. >> they were a little bit different. you know, i do think, though, that this is interesting when you hear people like kasich and others talk about, you know, giving the american people a vote in this. giving them say. the american people had a say. they voted for barack obama twice and gave him eight years in office. i have to imagine that if one of these republicans does become president and wins a second term, that in their eighth year in office that they would feel like they have an obligation and a right to do plenty of things
including nominate a supreme court justice. >> john, we used to be so much deference giving the president his or her choice to fill any judicial appointment, whether it's supreme court or appellate court or not. but in the recent years, we've seen in the senate these judicial wars really, really intensify. even republicans would point to democrats filibustering appeals court nominees, even president obama joining a filibuster of john roberts in the senate that's clearly something that, you know, we'll probably hear republicans talk about a lot. if they decide not to hold a vote and keep that seat open for over a year, that will be an escalation to a whole new level. >> and it goes way beyond the politics because the balance of the court's at stake. so many 5-4 decisions. a president obama pick would turn it over to presumably a liberal majority. fascinating to watch this play out. also it's already an issue in the campaign. and you know, the republicans say let me win. i want that pick. the democrats say give it to president obama. that's what the constitution says.
but within the republican party, we had an interesting fight last night between donald trump and ted cruz. >> the next president is going to appoint one, two, three, four supreme court justices. if donald trump is president, he will appoint liberals. and you know how i know that donald's supreme court justices will be liberals? >> you don't know. >> because his entire life he's supported liberals from jimmy carter to hillary clinton to john kerry. in 2004, he contributed to john kerry. nobody who cares about judges would contribute to john kerry, hillary clinton, chuck schumer and harry reid. >> the judicial issue, judges appointments means a lot to the conservative base. as we've talked about many times, other candidates have been frustrated. they haven't been able to expose donald trump as not a conservative. is this the magic wand? >> it might be. i think if cruz can really push this idea that he is the only one on the stage who you could guarantee would nominate a truly conservative justice, look at all these things that donald trump has said, how could you possibly know where he would go?
i think that that could have an impact. but as we've said before, it's just so hard to know about donald trump what will resonate. >> this finally good real, right? it's not a hypothetical you might have to replace a supreme court justice. there might be one right out of the gate. >> does this unfairly hurt jeb bush because his dad did david suter and his brother did john roberts? >> maybe. the bush name is not known among conservatives forty great supreme court picks. this issue plays to all of cruz's strengths. he was solicitor general in texas. he has a long and distinguished legal career. he had some very important cases before the supreme court. conservatives know that he will pick a scalia-like justice. >> he turned it back on cruz last night for his support of john roberts in the past and john roberts upholding the individual mandate and obamacare, something that is still rubbing conservatives the wrong way. >> and remember, cruz is still in the senate. he is going to have a platform to beat this drum for the remainder of the issue. >> watch the senators in the race. senator sanders, senator rubio,
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three major players. latinos and african-americans have the power to decide who wins in nevada and south carolina, and don't think for a second hillary clinton isn't well aware of that. >> today senator sanders said that president obama failed the presidential leadership test. and this is not the first time that he has criticized president obama. in the past he's called him weak. he's called him a disappointment. i expect from republicans. i do not expect from someone running for the democratic nomination to succeed president obama. >> that is -- that is a low blow. one of us ran against barack obama. i was not that candidate. >> how's this for name dropping? 21 times in all clinton mentioned president obama during thursday's debate. including in this retort where sanders suggested wall street contributions are all about buying influence. >> i debated then-senator obama numerous times on stages like this. and he was the recipient of the largest number of wall street
donations of anybody running on the democratic side ever. now, when it mattered, he stood up and took on wall street. >> let's not insult -- let's not insult the intelligence of the american people. people aren't dumb. why in god's name does wall street make huge campaign contributions? i guess just for the fun of it. they want to throw money around. >> much like on the republican side, the more these two debate, the more we see the tensions and that they're sort of under each other's skin a little bit. heading in -- this is the test for hillary clinton, the whole strategy all along has been maybe we underestimated bernie sanders at first. maybe we're surprised by his strength. but we're moving now into a place where the democrat -- the real democratic base votes, latinos and african-americans, and we're going to win. however, the sanders campaign thinks it has some juice. >> yeah, and if you listen to the clinton campaign talk about nevada in particular, you know something's going on there.
they're talking about it looking more like iowa and new hampshire and a more diverse state and that to me is a sign they're seeing something happening there. i do think on the wall street point, that continues to be sanders's best line of attack. no matter what hillary clinton says about obama and accepting campaign contributions from wall street executives, it's a lot different than accepting personal speaking fees from wall street. and the more that sanders hits that, the harder it becomes for her to message her way out of that. >> getting back to the nevada point, i sat down with harry reid, democrat, last week and he was absolutely furious as the clinton campaign for suggesting that nevada is 80% white, essentially trying to downplay or make it sound like even if she does not win nevada, it's okay because south carolina really represents the democratic coalition. reid says that's not true. they're looking at my old high school yearbook, he said. now we have hispanics. this is a really diverse state. and he also said that that race is a toss-up right now. very close. >> the reid/clinton thing to me is one of the delicious subplots
that doesn't get a lot of attention. and the clintons don't forget. the clintons don't forget. now, her trying to counter your point about his economic populous that is working with the democratic base. hillary clinton in that debate and since then on the campaign trail has been saying, okay, fine. you can have an economic plan. maybe you can appeal to somebody by saying i'ming if to take down the big banks. the case she's trying to make is that bernie sanders has one issue and one alone. >> not everything -- for the everything is about an economic theory. right? if we broke up the big banks tomorrow, and i will if they deserve it, if they pose a systemic risk, i will, would that end racism? would that end sexism? would that end discrimination against the lgbt community? i'm the only candidate who will take on every barrier to progress! i'm the only candidate who has a record of taking on those barriers! >> she's bigger is the point she's trying to make, sha these a bigger candidate.
she's a broader candidate, a deeper, more experienced candidate. but in this climate, does that work? >> you know, it hasn't yet. it certainly hasn't. and for whatever reason, her message is not resonating with people -- with the obama coalition. i mean, and that's what she needs to build back in order to win this thing. and so maybe it's not about tearing down sanders at the end of the day. >> sanders is genius in this race is that he has a systemic critique of the economy and a systemic critique of our political system. and he's forced her to defend both. he's forced her to say yes, i know that campaign finance reform needs to happen, it's a mess. but within the confines of the system, we can do these small-bore policies. you know, evolution, liberal reform where sanders is saying to, it all is terrible and we need to blow up the system. it's the left-wing version of trump's case on the republican side. >> and the clinton campaign is trying to throw everything it can at sanders and nothing has quite stuck yet. whether he's got proposals that will never fly, whether he
doesn't have foreign policy experience, whether he's a single-issue candidate, which one will stick, they're trying different attack lines to see which one actually works. >> pragmatism isn't hot fire. it's not why people run to the polls. it's these bigger ideas. >> she said i will break up the banks if there's systemic risk. she's talking about this line in dodd/frank that allows you to do that. sanders says i will break up the banks, period. >> it doesn't feel natural from her. a lot of people don't believe. >> because of his history, a senator of vermont, he's playing catch-up. it's just a fact. in nevada he's stressing that he opposes obama's deportation strategy. in south carolina where hillary clinton needs the african-american vote, there's been a fight about whether bernie sanders was sufficiently active in the movement. bernie sanders says he was. she has some friends saying he wasn't. she has an ad on tv in south
carolina trying to go straight for the african-american vote. >> change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability.
bernie sanders. he was there when dr. king marched on washington unafraid to challenge the status quo to end racial profiling, take on police misconduct and take down a system that profits from mass imprisonment. >> there is no president who will fight harder to end institutional racism. >> this, to me, is the defining test of this race. because of where the calendar goes next. where you have either majorities or high pluralities of african-americans in the democratic electorate. if bernie sanders can break through and get a sizeable number, that means a longer race and a changed race. >> and the place to look when we get numbers out of south carolina is younger african-americans because the big question is going to be whether younger african-americans vote their race or their age. younger people have flocked to bernie sanders. and why wouldn't a younger african-american connect with his message the way a younger white person would?
that's the argument that the sanders campaign is making. >> that's why you see people in the congressional black caucus come out and more aggressively support hillary clinton as they did last week because they're trying to push back on sanders's surge. >> can he turn that to his advantage saying there's the establishment? >> a little bit. he tried to use the establishment to describe other liberal interest groups, and it sort of backfired on him. remember when he described -- i believe it was a pro-choice group that endorsed hillary clinton. the establishment, he had to apologize. i don't think he wants to call people like john lewis and other members of the civil rights movement the establishment. we're going to hear a lot about firewall. the clinton campaign supposedly has a firewall of voters. and if bernie sanders breaches the firewall, katie bar the door. >> katie bar the door. tomorrow's news today is next. a sneak peek including hillary clinton's women problem.
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it's worth looking at the state's economy. one of the big differences between iowa and new hampshire was the economy recovered much quicker than in a lot of places in the country. the recovery in nevada has been quite slow. the unemployment rate there is higher than the national average. and at some recent campaign rallies, you've heard from a lot of voters talking about losing their jobs recently and a lot of fears that a recession could come back again. and democrats in the state that i've talked to say that this is really a corinne why bernie sanders may outperform in nevada. hillary clinton has really wrapped herself in obama's policies, and that may not resonate well with voters who say hey, obama's economic policies haven't affected us here. sanders, meanwhile, can talk about the idea that these possible recessions will continue to come unless you do have these big systemwide changes he's talking about. >> interesting to watch. caucus system, too. manu? >> john, we've been talking so much about the so-called establishment candidate in the republican race. and what better way to be the establishment candidate than get enforce am thes from members of congress. right now there's an intense effort by rubio's campaign and
jeb bush's campaign to get support from members of congress behind the scenes. have their surrogates reach out to the members who are considering going one way or the other. and one person who's on both campaigns' mind is tom codden, the arkansas senator. he's withheld his endorsement so far. he waited till huckabee got out of the race. and now he's seen as what would be a big prize for whoever he decides to choose. he may even decide to choose trump. who knows? all of this really points to how important south carolina is. because when south carolina comes and if jeb bush does better than marco rubio or vice versa, then you'll see a wave of support potentially from members of congress and it will really show the party start to coalesce behind someone. but the waters are muddied once again, then we could also not have a clear picture. >> it also helps the more prominent surrogates and several votes voting on the road to help you out. ryan? >> on the democratic side, also big competition for big-name endorsements, especially if this race carries on and bernie
sanders continues to challenge hillary clinton. two of the most important endorsements would be barack obama which his aides have said he's not going to endorse in the primary. but if bernie sanders starts to eat into nonwhite voters, you'll see a lot of pressure on the white house and a lot of pressure for obama to jump in. aside from obama, perhaps the most important endorsement is elizabeth warren. a lot of sanders's supporters started at warren supporters, wanted her to run for president. of course she didn't. but my understanding is from talking to democrats is that even though 39 out of the 44 democrats in the senate have endorsed hillary clinton, elizabeth warren does not plan to endorsing in this primary. but you can bet if this race goes on and sanders and clinton are locked in a fierce battle, there will be enormous pressure on her to change her mind. >> in a word, leverage. jackie? >> so we've been talking a lot about how women especially young women have been voting for bernie sanders. but well before people were feeling the bern, i was talking to pollsters who say after focus group after focus group, young
women were not into hillary clinton. this is before the bernie sanders rise. and so you have to think that maybe instead of tearing bernie sanders down, this is a problem with hillary clinton and her appeal to that demographic. >> maybe they should have caught it a little bit earlier? i'll close with this. a big decision in the next 24 to 48 hours for ohio governor john kasich. after placing second in new hampshire, his plan was to just dabble in south carolina, then move on and get an early start in states down the road a couple weeks on the calendar. but viewed as more favorable to him, mostly state says in the midwest. but the south carolina crowds have been good. he felt great after last night's debate and some polling could suggest kasich could be in play for second or third in south carolina. so his team is now debating whether to rip up the schedule and make a south carolina play this week. the upside is obvious. kasich would benefit if he could again poll ahead of marco rubio or jeb bush or both. but it's a huge risk. if he gambles and loses, it might be seen as a mistake that cost precious time, money and the perception of his place in the race. that's if for "inside politics."
you don't want to miss cnn hosting back-to-back town hall events this week in south carolina. over two nights, wednesday and thursday with anderson cooper at 8:00 p.m. eastern. again, thanks for sharing your sunday morning. we'll see you soon. coming up, "state of the union." ♪ ♪virgin islands nice ♪ ♪so nice ♪so nice, so nice ♪ spend a few days in the u.s. virgin islands and return with a lifetime of experiences. that's virgin islands nice. ♪so nice, so nice aren't moving in the right direction,bers it can be a burden.
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hello, i'm dana bash in washington where the state of our union is stealing for a fight. the sudden death of supreme court justice antonin scalia sent an already-tense presidential race into overdrive. and the political drama played out live on television last night just moments before the start of a republican debate, president obama vowed to fill justice scalia's seat. >> i plan to fulfill my constitutional responsibilities to nominate a successor in due time. there will be plenty of time for me to do so and for the senate to fulfill its responsibility to give that person a fair hearing and a timely vote. >> but within minutes, the gop candidates on the debate stage demanded that the senate block any potential nominee.