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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  February 15, 2016 8:00pm-9:01pm PST

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welcome to the battle lines. just five days before they go before the voters in south carolina. the leading republican presidential candidates are at war with one another. trump against cruz. cruz against trump. cruz against rubio. trump against bush. candidates calling other candidates unstable, liars, threatening lawsuits. hasn't been this tough since adams supporters called jackson's wife, well, you'll have to look that one up because i'm not going to say it. jeb bush has been used by trump as a political punching bag is punching back bringing his brother, the former president, into the fight. george w. bush may have left office as one of the least popular presidents in history but remains one of the most popular republicans in south carolina where he campaigned with his brother today and where donald trump was the unspoken subject. we'll have more on the impact he had from gary tuchman. >> reporter: former president george w. bush with his wife laura on the 2016 campaign trail to try to make his brother jeb the next president.
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>> i came here for two reasons. one, because i care deeply about jeb and, two, because i care deeply about our country. >> reporter: the two sons of another former president george h.w. bush have not campaigned together until now in south carolina. >> there seems to be a lot of name calling going on. but i want to remind you what our good dad told me one time. labels are for soup cans. >> reporter: george w. bush did not mention donald trump by name, but there were clear inferences to the real estate mogul. >> i understand americans are angry and frustrated. but we do not need someone in the oval office who mirrors and inflames our anger and frustration. >> reporter: and those inferences were sprinkled throughout the speech. >> strength is not empty rhetoric. it's not bluster. and in my experience, the
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strongest person usually isn't the loudest one in the room. >> reporter: jeb bush is significantly behind in south carolina primary polls but hopes this event provides a spark. if jeb bush doesn't stun the political world and win the south carolina primary it will break the bush family palmetto state winning streak. his brother won here in 2000 and 2004. his father won in 1988. many believe the brotherly campaign appearance can help change the dynamics in the state's primary. >> i think he was a wonderful president. he gets a lot of criticism. given the cards he was dealt, he did a wonderful job. >> you think this will help his brother's campaign? >> yes. >> you think he can win south carolina? >> i think if he doesn't win, he's going to do very well. >> reporter: many people here have supported jeb bush from the beginning, some others have gravitated towards him because of their dislike for one of the other republican candidates. >> how does it make you feel when donald trump makes fun of jeb by saying he's campaigning
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with his mommy and now brother. >> juvenile is the only way to describe the way that he really is in general is very juvenile. very child-like. and it's not really, i think, getting him anywhere with people who are really paying attention to things. >> reporter: donald trump has a commanding lead in the polls. much to the dismay of many people here who have supported bushes in the past and plan to support this bush in the immediate future this saturday. >> i ask for your support next saturday. i ask for your prayers for our family. god bless you all. thank you very much for coming. >> gary joins us from charleston, south carolina. looks like he had a positive reception. what do supporters think about him spending more time on the trail? >> as soon as this event ended,
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i heard a group say why hasn't this guy been on the trail more? they want to see him on the trail in the days to come. george w. bush spoke for about 22 minutes. his brother only 15 minutes. so the former president spoke longer than the man who hopes to be president. george w. bush said he doesn't really miss washington and the white house after eight years and then a chant began. we miss you. we miss you, mr. president. the most noteworthy time was him slamming donald trump without once mentioning his name. >> thank you, gary. this is only the latest skirmish in a long running effort to put jeb bush in a corner using his brother's stance on iraq and 9/11. no one has become better at twisting this particular night than donald trump who is finishing up a rally in greenville. take a look at this moment from saturday night. >> i could care less about the insults that's donald trump gives to me. it's blood sport for him.
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he enjoys it. i'm glad he's happy about it. but i have -- >> i am sick and tired of him going after my family. my dad is the greatest man alive in my mind. and while -- while donald trump was building a reality tv show, my brother was building a security apparatus to keep us safe. and i'm proud of what he did. he's had the gall to go after -- >> the world trade center came down in your brother's reign. remember that. >> let me finish -- he's had the gall to go after my mother. >> that's not keeping us safe. >> joining us now political commentator, jeffrey lord who supports trump. national republican consultant and former south carolina republican party chairman kate dawson and dana bash. the gloves are off when it comes to trump but avoiding his name is interesting. >> he didn't have to say his name. everybody knew who he was talking about, what he was talking about.
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he has kind of made it his life's work post-white house to not delve into politics. even going where he went tonight was way further than he has for years n years and years. in some ways it was more powerful and dare we say presidential for him to do it the way he did by talking about his traits without saying his name and comparing and contrasting the donald trump that we've all come to know with the jeb bush that we hear jeb bush explain. the fact he's a quiet leader and so on and so forth. the way he compared and contrasted that was pretty powerful. >> you know south carolina better than anyone. i heard some say it was interesting to hear jeb bush and his brother side by side. their styles are obviously very different. i wonder how you think this played in south carolina? >> i think it will play real
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well. george bush when he was president of the united states came to south carolina eight different times raising money for mark sanford, lindsey graham, electing jim demit to u.s. senate. eight times is a lot for a president compared to barack obama, one time in eight years. that builds a base. his dad has been here. i saw confidence out of jeb bush that i haven't seen in the past. n that was with his brother showing up. i'm not sure, unless president bush stays on the trail with him, that he can keep that momentum. he's pretty far down in the polls. trump made some tactical errors on saturday night. the exchange that you showed with jeb going after donald trump on the issue of 9/11, i think one thing to make note is cnn and 2012, your exit polls showed 55% of south carolinians made their mind up the last week of the election. and i contend that's getting ready to happen now. >> jeffrey, these attacks by
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donald trump and the bush family calling george w. bush fair game. do you see that resonating in a state like south carolina with the amount of military voters? >> it's possible. i spent the day going back through the 2000 south carolina primary. it was rugged. it was between george w. bush and john mccain. one of the things we're not thinking of here is the return of george w. bush, president bush, to the campaign trail. it's going to bring forth all the -- the south carolina primary of 2000 and though way the bush family treated john mccain. today they are saying he's a hero but it's obvious the bush campaign and their allies in 2000 were slamming him as being, and i'm quoting from an article in "vanity fair," crazy, having fathered a black child out of wedlock.
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mrs. mccain was supposed to be a drug addict. it was savage and left a bad taste in senator mccain's mouth that took him quite a while to get over. that's something that donald trump is going to be looking at here as the bushes return to try and do this again. >> katon, south carolina politics are legendarily tough. >> i was a member of the '99-00 bush squad. we also nominated john mccain to the presidency in south carolina. i think all that is eye wash. talking about those former races won't matter. what's going to matter is the posturing. we're getting ready to have 700,000 people vote. about 100,000, none of the campaigns know exactly who they are. that's going to be a big
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difference. donald makes a big mistake if he wants to make an issue of george w. bush in south carolina. a big tactical mistake. a guy with a pretty good lead, solid base and maybe some numbers are telling him he needs to do that. he was in good shape. right now the field is open. rubio had a good night. cruz had a bad night on saturday. but the voters are open and i listened to them today. they are moving. they are talking about it and there's a lot of energy and excitement here. it's going to get rougher. if anybody wants to start whining in south carolina, the voters will usually punish you for that. >> no whining zone. we'll pick up the conversation after a short break and focus on the cruz/trump battle. later the showdown over naming a supreme court justice. republicans vowing to block any nominee that president obama puts forward. if you have moderate to severe plaque psoriasis...
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if you thought you'd heard it all from donald trump, you are wrong. he's renewed his directive to sue ted cruz. they are weapons which have become an all-out gop presidential war. on the trump/cruz front, things reached new highs or new lows depending on how you look at it. >> ted cruz is desperate. look, he's -- i think ted is a very unstable guy. i have never, ever met a person that lies more than ted cruz. i have never, ever seen anything like it.
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>> today donald trump held a press conference where he apparently lost it. i mean, he was just going on and on about how i'm the most horrible person in the world because i keep repeating the things he said. and, you know, it's an amazing thing. you notice how rattled donald gets when his numbers start going down. >> dana, this battle between trump and cruz. have you seen anything like this in politics lately? >> it's hard to answer that question because we've seen so much craziness going on. but i have to say over the past few days, really since the debate on saturday night, the "l" word, liar, has been used so much between cruz and trump and also marco rubio. he was on "state of the union" which i was filling in on sunday and marco rubio called ted cruz
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a liar like six times in one sentence. that i had not seen in a very long time. it used to be you didn't say words like that. those days are over. >> jeff, the new comments by trump/cruz is saying donald trump is becoming unhinged, up against a wall. trump talked about changing his tone if he were to become president. he seems to be doubling down. >> again, this is what candidates do in presidential primaries. there's a long american history. you have cited some of it earlier tonight with andrew jackson and john quincy adams. one of the useful purposes this shows, which should never be lost sight of is if the candidate, whether it's trump or cruz or bush or whomever can't stand up to these kind of assaults, then by the time they get to face the democratic nominee, hillary clinton or any other, the full weight of the
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democratic party machine will come down on them and they won't be able to withstand it. what a lot of republicans are looking for in the midst of all this chaos and the words is who can stand up to this? who will fight back? donald trump is a fighter. he's fighting back and that's an important thing for the base of the party to understand and know. >> katon, also the evangelical vote, how large a role it plays in a state like south carolina. does george w. bush stumping for his brother play to that strength? >> if he stays in south carolina. the question is, does george bush go back to dallas? he's going to have to stay here and do an awful lot to help him. one of the things -- >> that's not going to happen. >> the two that got hurt are trump and cruz. the lesson learned from christie versus rubio. so what you are watching right now is a pretty good battle. the evangelicals matters. it's 62% self-identified. they want to see how you take a punch also. so it's opened up the field pretty good. it's going to be a sporty week.
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the whiners trophy will go right now to donald trump and ted cruz for the time being. >> do we know -- is the former president going to stay longer? >> right now i'm told the answer is no. i asked earlier tonight whether or not he is going to be back any time soon, and the answer from the senior bush source was, it's tough. probably not. but you never know. he looked like he felt pretty comfortable getting back into the game there tonight. and maybe with the kind of reception he got and seeing the kind of boost he clearly gave to his brother, first of all, just bringing the crowd in, but also, jeb bush seemed like a different person. he seemed like the animated guy with burr that people said that he was back in the '90s in florida. perhaps being the big brother, he sees that's and says, well, maybe i need to give my little brother a little more love. >> this may be a stupid thing to
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bring up, but is it a conscious thing? jeb bush did not wear glasses today. is that conscious? >> it has to be. the first thing i noticed. i was looking at him saying he looks so different. he didn't wear his glasses. it seems superficial but it's a thing because part of the perception of jeb bush is that, you know, people talked about his father and the fact there was the whimp factor. i hate to say it. the way he came across was not as towering and having that kind of presence that he should for somebody physically of his size, and perhaps it's because he hunches. he's gotten very thin and also those glasses. i was texting with some bush sources watching him speaking without the glasses and got some jokes back saying the ladies all like him without his glasses, but it clearly makes a difference in how he's perceived. in this profession, in campaigning and politics,
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perception is so important. >> i'm going to take off my glasses based on everything just said. >> not nearly as cool as yours. >> i now feel immasculated on sea many levels by dana bash. >> when you take the gloves off, you take the glasses off, too. >> if he has glasses as cool and as hip as yours, anderson. am i digging myself out? >> we have to leave it there. dana bash, jeffrey lord and katon dawson. appreciate it. this week i'm going to be hosting two republican town halls in south carolina. on wednesday, with dr. ben carson, marco rubio and ted cruz. that's wednesday night. thursday, john kasich, jeb bush and donald trump will be taking questions from me and audience members. that's 8:00 p.m. eastern wednesday and thursday, two big nights in a row right here on cnn. just ahead tonight, president obama weighing supreme court nominees to succeed the late justice scalia. senate republicans saying essentially don't even bother. do they have a legal leg to
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washington has seen in decades. just hours after word that justice antonin scalia had died in his sleep at a texas hunting resort saturday night, republican lawmakers and presidential candidates began weighing in saying the vacancy should not be filled until a new president takes office. mitch mcconnell vowed to block any nominee at all gambling on a republican winning the white house in november and preserving the 5-4 mix of republican and democratic appointees. the white house saying president obama will name someone shortly calling their bet and potentially launching the toughest political battle since the fight over obamacare. pamela brown is following late developments and the battle over naming his successor. she joins us from washington. what are the latest details? >> reporter: we know justice scalia went to texas on friday for a hunting trip at a secluded rezorts. he had dinner on friday night. the ranch owner had been speaking to reporters and said scalia was entertaining and engaged throughout the dinner. around 9:00 p.m. he said he had
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a long week and wanted to get a good sleep. a separate source tells evan perez that scalia said he wasn't feeling well on friday. the next day the range owner checked on scalia because he didn't show up for breakfast and lunch and found him in bed lying in repose. the sheets weren't wrinkled, no signs of foul play. it appears he died in his sleep of natural causes and the family has reportedly requested for him not to have an autopsy. >> in terms of political fallout, a fight brewing over the successor between the white house and republicans. any timetable as to how it could play out? >> likely it will be within the next month we'll hear about a nomination based on previous nominations coming from president obama with sotomayor and kagan. scalia's death sent president obama and senate republicans on this collision course.
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it began shortly after news of his death broke on saturday. president obama said he will fulfill his constitutional duty to nominate someone to fill scalia's vacancy. and today the white house said the republicans are for a bluster on the issue and have an ironclad responsibility to confirm the president's nominee. senate republicans say they'll not confirm any supreme court nominees until the next president is elected. as one gop source told me, whoever the nominee is while president obama is in office is dead in the water and, a, quote, nonstarter. a big fight ahead. >> pam la, thanks. jeffrey toobin joins us here in new york. also dana bash, cnn chief political correspondent. and david gergen, senior political analyst joining us from massachusetts tonight. how do you see this playing out, jeff? >> with no confirmation. >> you don't think they're going to happen? >> absolutely not. this seat is too precious to the republicans. this is the pivot on the -- on which the court turns. four democratic appointees.
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five republican appointees, with scalia. to have five democratic appointees would be an earthquake in the history of the supreme court. and the republicans have the power to stop a nominee, and they're going to use it. >> dana, this is a year you not only have a presidency up for grabs but control of congress. democrats already saying this is gop obstructionism. >> they are, but the republicans who have the most to lose in the senate, the most vulnerable. five incumbent republicans who are potentially in trouble and in danger of losing their seats. four of them came out today saying that they are in support of what mitch mcconnell is doing. they think it is the correct thing to do to wait until president obama is out of office and the next president comes in. so they are all banking on the fact that it is far more dangerous to not follow the republicans' lead here than to break from the republican, even though they are in purple
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states, swing states where democrats already are using this against them. >> the talk from republicans is the american people deserve a say in this. but they did have a say. they re-elected president obama in 2012. that's the counterargument. why shouldn't a nominee -- >> absolutely. arguments on both sides. he should nominate and i think he will in the next 30 days or so come up with a nominee. and he'll send it forth to the senate. what the republicans must do at that point is not simply turn their backs. they ought to process the nomination. go through all the papers. the hearings and everything like that. put it up for a vote at which point they are very, very likely to reject. that is within the power of -- that's how the constitution works. and we have seen people reject it in the past. the body is not even in the ground and this has touched off a political firestorm.
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all parties understand now that all three branches of the government are up for grabs in this election. that hasn't happened in a long, long, long time. >> in terms of other issues facing the court in this next year, this could have an impact on a number of decisions. >> it could. immigration. the president's executive orders on immigration. the new restrictions on abortion in texas. very important case about the rights of public employee unions out of california. several cases at least could wind up 4-4, which would mean the lower court decision is affirmed but there is no national precedent set. most supreme court decisions are not 5-4. so the court will continue to function. but the court was designed to have nine people on it, and if this goes on for a year or considerably more, it really will hurt the ability of the court to function. >> dana, it is the perfect storm to occur during a presidential election. republicans are on firm ground in terms of rules and
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procedures. no one can force them to take up a supreme court nomination. the wild card is public opinion and pressure from constituents. >> that's right. and because this is such a divided country, the pressure is going to be coming from both sides. and it already is. it's no accident that's mitch mcconnell put out a statement within hours, actually probably an hour of news coming out that justice scalia died because the second that happened, the pressure coming from conservatives, from conservative groups because intense saying no, no, no, don't you do this. so it's hard to see that changing. the one question out there has been whether or not the president really wants to throw down the gauntlet and try to put up a recess appointment. whomever he picks, try to get hum in when congress isn't in session. but it's a big butt. republicans run congress, both
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sides. so they can just not go to recess and prevent him from doing that if it got to that point. >> all the candidates have been weighing in on this. i want to put that together for our viewers and play the clip. >> president obama is eager to appoint justice scalia's replacement this year. but you know in the last 80 years we've not once, has the senate confirmed a nomination made in an election year, and now is no year to start. >> the president can appoint whoever he wants but mitch mcconnell made it clear we're not moving forward on any nominations until after the election. >> we should not allow a judge to be appointed during his time. >> there is no way the senate should confirm anyone that barack obama tries to appoint in his last year in office to a lifetime appointment. >> it's up to mitch mcconnell and everybody else to stop it. it's call delay, delay, delay. >> no one expects obama to nominate someone in the same conservative mold as scalia but what about someone fairly moderate?
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generally speaking, have republicans justified blocking a moderate nominee, someone they previously have confirmed to a district court or court of appeals. >> well, there are at least a couple of candidates who would fit that mold. and that is someone that's been unanimously confirmed to a court of appeals. republicans all giving their vote to that person. but even so, anderson, i do think that each side now is seizing upon arguments which are going to have some force with the public. it is true that there's been a long time since -- there's been such a delay in putting somebody on the court if there's a vacancy. we just don't experience that. people tend to get it done. the republicans are making the argument. back in -- when george w. bush still had a year and a half left in his presidency it was chuck schumer, major democratic senator, who took to the air waves and said we should not --
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we should not accept any more nominees to the supreme court from george w. bush as long as he is president, except in extraordinary circumstances. the presumption of confirmation should be reversed so there's a presumption against confirmation. each side has played this before and now they are seizing on the argument that makes the most sense. this is going to become a hot topic. probably within the republican ranks it may help ted cruz the most. he's the most articulate and worked at a clerk on the court. could give a serious speech after the south carolina primary in which he lays out the case. somebody on the republican side needs to do that. he may be in the best position to do it. >> anderson, you like to keep them honest on this program. the issue of judicial nominees before the senate, i've covered the senate for a long time, it
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is the biggest issue where you see the most hipocracy. where you stand depends on where you sit. you hear the same people making polar opposite arguments if they are in the majority or minority or have the president or don't. it's stunning. >> it's about power. and republicans have the power at the moment, and they're going to use it. >> to dana's point, where you sit and what time of the year it is and who is in power. >> that's right. if you have only a year to go, it is really possible to run out the clock. if you had a democratic senate, there would be hearings scheduled promptly but that's why we have elections. >> one last point. one quick point. i think this really hurts the court to have it so engulfed in politics and we've always heard of lady liberty. and now this is all about who has power. what the law is is not
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determined by some impartial body but by partisans who are being appointed to the court. that lowers the reputation of the court and must be something jeffrey toobin thinks about a lot. >> david, dana, thank you. who kwould president obama appoint to replace scalia? we'll look at some of the names circulating. and hillary clinton on the campaign trail in nevada stepping up her criticism of bernie sanders.
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with senate republicans vowing to block any supreme court nominee president obama puts forward and the president signaling he's not about to back down from his constitutional duty, the question is who is he going to name? here to run through some possibilities, tom foreman. >> reporter: at or near the top of every list is this name. sri srinivasan, 48 years old, on the d.c. court of appeals, appointed by president obama. approved by a vote of 97-0 and also has some ties to the bush administration. that's one of the reasons people think of him as such a likely possibility here. another possibility would be jane kelly. 51 years old on the 8th circuit
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court of appeals. also appointed to her job by president obama and approved unanimously by the senate. if she were selected, shooed be the supreme court nominee from this president who is a woman. if she made it to the court that would make four women out of four men. and patricia millett on the d.c. court of appeals. this is often seen as an on ramp to the supreme court. that's why everybody on there gets some consideration or thought when something like this comes around. if the president wants to go with somebody a little older, he could look at merrick garland on the d.c. court of appeals, the chief judge appointed by president bill clinton. a moderate and like many potential nominees and many on the court, a graduate of harvard law school. some grousing about people
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saying it's all harvard and yale. maybe they should branch out here. maybe paul watford, 48 years old on the 9th circuit court of appeals, also appointed by president obama, but not unanimously approved. doing a job the white house would say is very credible. beyond that, maybe you look at adalberto jordan. also appointed by president obama. his family migrated when he was very young but has grown up here ever since. a lot of diversity in all the choices, and these are all just speculation. but according to a lot of court watchers, pretty good guesses to start with. >> back with us, jeffrey toobin and jonathan turley.
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professor turley, you had an article where you talked about president obama using the nuclear option and making a recess appointment. i want to read a part of what you says. the difference is often the exercise of restraint. it's not enough to say you can do something but whether you should do something. do you foresee this getting to that point? >> in the politics we've all been witnessing, there's virtually nothing i'd rule out. this is a toxic relationship between this president and this congress. it's a president who has gone unilaterally in taking actions before, including going too far on recess appointments given the recent canning decision where he was rejected in terms of his claims there. there is a possibility. the problem is the most likely
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time would be at the very end of his term when congress would be essentially closing up shop, bringing in the new president, the new congress. that would make the recess appointment even more controversial because it would occur literally days before a new president with a national mandate would come in. i would hope that president obama would not take that step. but if the republicans refuse to
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give him a fair hearing, i'm sure there will be some that will say he should use it. >> jeffrey toobin, do you see him doing that? >> no. there's no history of putting in supreme court justices in recess appointments when there's controversy. william brennan, the famous liberal, was an -- originally a recess appointment. that was to fill a gap until he was confirmed by the senate. i think this is a noncontroversy. and the real controversy is whether, you know, his nominee, whoever it is, will get a vote. >> go ahead, professor. >> i think the precedent would be something like the eisenhower nomination of earl warren when he ran into some choppy resettion.
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given a recess appointment. obviously confirmed. i agree with jeff. this is a very extreme act. and as my column suggested, i actually hope that the republicans give a fair hearing to the nominee. and i also hope the president comes out and says i'm not going to use this option of a recess appointment. if it doesn't happen then you need to understand your vote in november will be on the person who will fill that seat. >> that's certainly something we've heard hillary clinton talk about, all the candidates now are using that to mobilize their supporters, showing how important this election is. how do we -- how do you know the names of these people who might be nominated?
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it's speculation but i saw you tweeting about this early on. is it just that they are -- >> there is a limited universe of people who are of the appropriate age, of the appropriate background, of the appropriate ideology. the universe of people essentially is federal court of appeals judges. and how many around 50-year-old democratically appointed judges are there who have certain intellectual professional backgrounds? it's just not that many. and, by the way, i could be wrong. that's the other possibility. >> professor, how often is it -- i mean, how often does a president get it wrong? they think they are nominating or picking a justice who believes one way and then turns out maybe they are different than they think they are? >> they often get it wrong, at least to some extent by -- some of these nominees are a blind date. some are selected because they don't have much controversial aspects to their record. that also means you know less about them. so they are good for confirmation. not great in terms of prediction. and some of those predictions have been way off. brennan was brought in as a conservative and became a liberal icon. you know what's interesting is they are replacing one of the few people on the court that came in pretty much as he left. scalia changed the court more than the court changed him. >> the surprised president is mostly a myths. you look at all nine justices, every single one is exactly as advertised. these appointments have become so scrutinized. yes, it's true some of these
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people don't have a big paper trail, but these presidents are -- you can say, well, david souter was maybe a surprise. if you look at the last 20, since the eisenhower administration, basically everyone has turned out exactly as advertised. >> i'd have to disagree. i know what jeff is saying. one name that hasn't been mentioned i would have put at the top of the list would be loretta lynch, the attorney general. she is very good. >> she barely got confirmed as attorney general. >> but she's someone who can -- look. if i was -- i would go fake my death in a boating accident rather than take this nomination. the person who goes -- >> it's a buzzsaw they are entering. >> usually you get this nomination and get beat up for several months but then become a supreme court justice. that's not going to happen here. >> professor turley, great to have you on. mr. toobin, jeffrey toobin as well. just ahead, hillary clinton's new line of attack. she's taking aim at bernie sanders for being a one-issue candidate. plus, the story behind this memorable moment. >> we need to get that dog and follow him around and every time they say these things like, oh, the great recession was caused by too much regulation. [ barking ] you totalled your brand new car.
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five days from now nevada holds its democratic caucuses. hillary clinton and bernie sanders were campaigning. more from our senior washington
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correspondent jeff zeleny. >> reporter: hillary clinton has three words for bernie sanders -- >> i am not a single issue candidate. i am not a single issue candidate. i am not a single issue candidate. >> reporter: a single issue candidate. that's how clinton is trying to brand sanders, hoping to slow his surge before voting begins in nevada and south carolina. >> we're going to surprise a lot of people in nevada. >> reporter: sanders still riding momentum from his commanding win in new hampshire prompting clinton to go back to the drawing board. at every stop she's telling
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supporters that sanders is focused on wall street and wall street alone. her campaign made a video to drive home the point. >> disastrous and illegal behavior on wall street. >> reporter: but sanders is exceeding even his own expectations. >> the idea that i'm a single issue candidate with the only nation who doesn't guarantee health care. we've got to raise the minimum wage to a living wage. that's not one issue. >> reporter: one issue clinton and sanders agreed on, the senate should consider president obama's nominee to fill justice antonin scalia's vacancy. >> the only reason to block this is pure partisanship. >> do not obstruct. obey the constitution. >> reporter: as their fight intensifies, clinton is trying to regain her confidence by showing democrats she's the well-rounded candidate in the race. >> not 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? >> no. >> reporter: their fight also a subject for humor on "saturday night live." >> i love bernie's whole vibe. >> i'm obsessed with his vibe.
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♪ i can't make you love me if you don't ♪ >> reporter: the democratic race is heated but the republican contest is explosive. former president bill clinton experienced that firsthand today campaigning for his wife in florida when he came face-to-face with a donald trump supporter. >> you took his money. >> i certainly did. i certainly did. and i took his money from my foundation where i used it better than he's using it now. i guarantee you. >> hillary clinton is also continuing to focus her attacks toward republicans. she talked to voters at a caucus event about wanting to fact check the candidates. >> she sure did. in an unusual way, she talked about the old days in arkansas when there was a radio ad that used to point out when things were not correct. it used an animal sound, a barking sound. you have to listen here to what she said. >> i'm trying to figure out how
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to do that with the republicans. we need to get that dog and follow them around and every time they say these things, like, oh, the great recession was caused by too much regulation. [ barking ] >> so fact checkers on the campaign trail, now we have barking dogs. a rare moment tonight in reno. >> jeff zeleny, thanks. we'll be right back. are you powered by protein? milk has 8 grams to help give you energy to unleash your potential. start every day with milk's protein and milk life.
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i mean about you inventing it. i invented the story, and isn't that what really matters? so... what else about me?
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quick reminder, i'll be hosting two republican town halls from south carolina wednesday and thursday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern here on cnn. that does it for us. thanks for watching. "cnn newsroom" starts now. hello and welcome to our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm isha sesay. >> and i'm john vause. this is "newsroom l.a." so much to get to this hour. we will begin with the republican race for the white house and a blast from the past that jeb bush hopes will push him ahead. there he is. former president george w. bush in south carolina. haven't seen him in eight years. out to stump for his brother. >> his first stint into politics since he left office in 2009. the former president looked rested and ready as he took the stage. he