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tv   CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin  CNN  April 14, 2016 11:00am-1:01pm PDT

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the greatest collection of shows free with xfinity on demand. hi there, i'm brooke baldwin. it is a gorgeous day here in new york. we're live from the brooklyn naval yard, the williamsburg bridge just behind us here, this gorgeous set that our cnn crew has put together for us here, ahead of the big night tonight. critical democratic presidential debate hosted by cnn. less than seven hours from now, bernie sanders will get his final chance to take on hillary clinton face-to-face before the all-important tuesday new york primary. senator sanders was born here in brooklyn. former secretary of state clinton elected here, served eight years as state senator. no question the state is special
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to both of these candidates. how will they treat such hallowed ground this evening? people are asking this because we will be the first debate since sanders said clinton was quote/unquote unqualified to be president. let me pause and i want to take you to a news conference. we're going to hear from the state attorney's office in palm beach county regarding the campaign manager of donald trump's campaign lewandowski. >> -- performed a thorough review of this case and made the legal and factual conclusions i will be disus coming today. i agree with miss ellis analysis in her close-out memo and as state attorney, eye made the decision this office will not be filing charges against lewandowski for battery. we've notified the parties involved in this matter and will make the memo available to all of you. it's important to note despite several media reports, this matter was never charged by --
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are we all good? all right. it's important to note that despite several media reports, this matter was never charged by this office. it was charged by the jupiter police department, which found probable cause that mr mr. lewandowski committed a simple battery against miss michelle fields. as is the normal process, the jupiter police department made a decision based on probable cause to issue a notice to appear to mr. lewandowski. afterwards, the jupiter police department sent our office a case file and we conducted an independent review to determine whether we would pursue the charges. jupiter police chief and the town police department do an outstanding job and they acted well within their authority to investigate and make an independent charging decision. we agree that probable cause exists for the jupiter police
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department to have charged mr. lewandowski in this case. as prosecutors, however, our standard for filing criminal charges is higher than mere probable cause. we have the burden of proving each case beyond a reasonable doubt. in doing so, a prosecutor must have a good faith basis that the evidence presented will sustain a conviction. while the evidence in this case is legally sufficient for the police to have charged mr mr. lewandowski, tit is not strong enough to meet the burden of a reasonable likelihood of a conviction. it is unethical to file cases when we believe there is not a good faith basis to proceed. here are some of the facts as stated in miss ellis close-out memorand memorandum. news reporter michelle fields was covering a campaign event in the ballroom at the trump
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international golf club in jupiter. presidential candidate donald trump had just completed a press conference. a afterwards, he had left the podium. the full video recording shows secret service agents clearing the pathway ahead of mr. trump. specifically, it appears that miss fields was directed to the back of the room along with other members of the media. after initially complying with the directive, miss fields returned to the pathway area and walked directly alongside mr. trump, attempting to ask questions of him. it appears based on the freeze frames from the video recording and an independent photograph taken by a "washington post" photographer that miss fields brushed or touched mr. trump's arm. he then appears to react to miss
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fields by pulling his arm back and away from her. at which time mr. lewandowski reached forward and grabbed miss field's arm, pulling her away from mr. trump. both mr. trump and mr mr. lewandowski then continued towards the exit at the back of the room. after reviewing the video recording, there is no reasonable doubt that mr mr. lewandowski -- mr mr. lewandowski pulled miss fields back as she was attempting to interview mr. trump. according to an affidavit submitted by a former fbi agent, when tasked with the protection of a political candidate, secret service agents will create a protective bubble. this protective bubble is created to prevent unauthorized individuals from getting too close to the person. regardless of whether or not they're members of the press. more importantly, under these circumstances, it is not uncommon for a candidate's inner
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circle staff members known to the agents to assist in clearing a safe pathway. it should be noted, however, that one agent was positioned directly behind miss fields and apeered to show no concern over her actions. mr. lewandowski could have called this agent's attention to her movements before taking action himself, if he considered her a threat. in addition, soon after the incident, mr. lewandowski publicly denied ever touching miss fields in any way. although these factors might undermine mr. lewandowski's potential defense, they do not outweigh the reasonable hypothesis of innocence based on the real-time facts and circumstances recorded on the video. as stated earlier, law enforcement arrests are based upon probable cause.
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state prosecution, however, relies upon a good faith basis that sufficient evidence exists to prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt. this includes consideration of any apparent defenses. although the facts support the allegation that mr. lewandowski did grab miss fields arm against her will, mr. lewandowski has a reasonable hypothesis of innocence. there's insufficient evidence to rebut these defenses. therefore, although probable cause exists, the state will no file this case. now, available for any questions you may have, for me or miss less. >> state attorney, would you talk about whether or not -- i'm sorry, glenna plilburg -- >> hi, how are you? >> will you talk about whether or not political atmosphere entered into what your process was, considering this was for
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simple battery -- >> as far as our review, it was like any other case. i do acknowledge there is international attention to this case, which doesn't exist in just about any other simple battery case. so that's why, you know, we have a press conference like this. but as far as the actual work that was done, the review, the analysis, it's the same as in every case. brian, you had a question. [ inaudible ] >> the apology in a case like this would be encouraged. we always appreciate when people take responsibility for their actions. but i can tell you our decision, miss ellis's memorandum and our decision in this case had nothing to do with the existence or nonexistence of an apology. >> did you speak to mr mr. lewandowski -- did your office interview him before you came to this conclusion?
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>> since miss ellis was in charge of the investigation, i'm turn that to her. >> no, we did not speak with mr. lewandowski. we spoke with his attorney. >> did you have a personal meeting with him or just over the phone? >> we spoke with him in person as well as over the phone. >> did he try to persuade you not to charge, did he give you a -- [ inaudible ] >> yes, he came in with what he believed to be the facts of the case. so he wanted to present what he believed to be the facts of the case. we took that into consideration. >> did -- with nbc news -- >> i'm sorry, one more, did the jupiter police department, before they charged him initially, because that happened within two days i think of the event, did they contact your office at all? >> no. >> did they seek any advice? >> no. >> no? that was entirely up to then at that point? >> correct. >> but they later got in touch with you? did you have meetings? >> the jupiter police department sent over the filing packet
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after the charge was filed. then when miss ellis did our own investigation for the office, among other things, she interviewed the lead detective in the case from the jupiter police department. that lead detective was here in this office for more than an hour and a half. >> kerry sanders with nbc news. in addition to the photograph, "the washington post" reporter and the videotape released, was there any other physical evidence that you looked at, any other videotapes that we haven't seen, any other photograph that we have not seen? >> no, we looked at -- obviously, there was a photograph of a bruise on her arm. that we reviewed. and in terms of anything else that we reviewed, everything else is taken from the actual video surveillance recording -- [ inaudible ] still photographs from these freeze frame shots. >> does that include anything -- the secret service directing her -- [ inaudible ]
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>> absolutely, yes, sir. >> what is that? >> that is captured on the surveillance recording. >> and it shows what? >> you can't necessarily hear because there's -- mr. trump is leaving, making his way to the exit. you can't actually hear what's being said. you hear noise in the ballroom. as they're making their way out, what's captured on the video is her, along with other journalists, media, being directed to the back of the ballroom. >> and you spoke to that secret service agent to confirm -- >> no, we did not. >> did you speak to the -- [ inaudible ] >> yes, sir. >> has anyone speak with miss fields today, whether she supports this decision -- [ inaudible ] >> we both spoke with miss fields today. and i'll let you speak to her about her thoughts but it was clear to us she was disappointed by this decision. >> how so? >> i mean, she wanted the
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prosecution to go forward. >> what about all of -- if she would get an apology, she would step back? >> there was no deal where we're going to drop charges in exchange for apology. in a case like this, we do encourage a policy. we think it's a good idea. i think that had an apology been given at the beginning of all this, we could have avoided the whole criminal justice process for this matter. [ inaudible question ] well, i know they were working on one and they showed me a draft of an apology -- >> who? >> the attorneys for the defendant. >> can you tell us what it said? >> i would be paraphrasing. it was a short apology. and it's up to them to reach out to fields and send it. [ inaudible ] >> earlier. >> earlier this week. >> did you speak to miss fields? >> absolutely. [ inaudible question ] >> yes, spoke with ms. fields on
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three occasions. [ inaudible question ] >> -- from the incident in question? >> well, the initial photos that we received were a couple of days old. because it was a delayed reporting, obviously. when i met with the detective in my office, afterward, i asked him to reach out, the photograph taken closer in time. she had taken a photograph on her iphone that same evening and there was really nothing there. so it was -- it was an investigation that i wanted him to do just to make a more thorough and complete investigation. the photographs we have from her do show bruising but, you know, it wasn't anything that was anything remotely close to what we got from her the actual night
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that it happened. >> her phone did not show -- >> her phone did not show any bruising, no. it wasn't until the photographs that the detectives would have picked up a couple of days later. >> but that's just in quality of photo issue, that's not that there was no injury? >> well, that -- that could be what happens when someone's bruised, you know. >> the bruise comes out -- >> exactly. >> yes, sir. >> can you talk about that protective bubble in the memo here, saying she got into the bubble there? >> we have the full video. i think you may have it. are we going to show that? i think you'll be able to see for yourself what we mean by it. >> if you can explain what your fighti i findings were from watching that? >> the press was directed towards the back.
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there's this bubble. she makes her way beyond the press area and gets right next to mr. trump and actually makes slight contact with mr. trump and you can see he sort of recoils and that's when mr. lewandowski comes and grabs her arm. [ inaudible ] >> well, it's our belief what we saw in the video that any contact was incidental and that is not contemplated under the simple battery statute. which requires an intentional and unwanted touching. george. >> -- file a misdepeopler battery this like this in your office declined to prosecute? >> it happens. we review misdemeanors that comes in, charges that are filed by police agencies because, you know, we ethically have to make a decision whether we have a good faith basis to prosecute or
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whether there's reasonable doubt. if we know in advance that reasonable doubt exists and we'll not be able to get a convection or even beyond a judgment of acquittal by the judge, we can't ethically file those charges. >> do you guess 10% of the time, hat half the time, how often do police have this and you decline to prosecute? >> often. we review domestic batteries all the time and, you know, instead of them actually arresting the person, they will present us with a filing packet. in which case we then review the case. a lot of those cases are not filed. as in this case. >> by the way, when she says often or a lot, it's far from a majority. it's the clear minority of cases. >> did you talk to anyone with the secret service directly about the protective bubble or about this incident? >> no, sir. >> there was an affidavit from an fbi agent.
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>> your conversations with miss fields, in person or on the phone? >> on the phone. >> in some parts of the country, the district attorney, state's attorney is elected, did you have any outside political influence on your decision here and how are you registered yourself? >> none. my political affiliate and political leanings are all very public. this is an apolitical office. we're all elected with a political party afillation. but once you get to this office and work as state attorney, your state attorney for everyone, and you have to run the office in a nonpartisan manner. as proof, i have three chief assistants who are here today. well, it's public, i am a registered democrat. >> did you get a phone call from donald trump's campaign -- [ inaudible ] >> mr. trump did reach out to this office. >> and who did he speak to?
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>> he spoke to a few of us, the chief assistants and me. >> what did he say? >> he said that he gave his version of the facts and his opinion of the case and then urged us to do the right thing. >> what was his version of the facts? >> the version of the facts was she touched him and pretty much that's it. she touched him and he did not think that mr. lewandowski should be prosecuted for it. >> did he say whether he felt threatened or scared or concerned? >> no, he just said that she -- she touched him and -- and all that is captured on the video surveillance. and you guys are going to see it. so, you know, she -- it was quite evident on the -- >> -- did the campaign readily give up the videotape or did you have to twist arms -- >> the police department had the
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tape so we got it from jupiter. >> when was the call -- >> a couple weeks ago. >> did he make any threat at all that he was thinking of filing a charge against her? >> i don't remember any such threat. i can tell you that the conversation we had, mr. trump had no bearing upon our final decision in the case. just like i said earlier about the existence or nonexistence of an apology letter had no bearing on our decision in this case. what did have the sole bearing on our decision are the facts of this case and the law. >> were there any notes or stenographer taken during that conversation, if it was on speaker phone or on the phone so we can make a request for those notes? >> i don't believe there were any notes taken, but if there were, anything subject to sunshine law will be available to you. >> a conference call, several people at once -- >> correct, correct.
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conference call. >> you as a longtime person here in politics locally, can you describe your relationship with trump, how well you know him and what type of events are -- >> yes, i got a kick out of the whole political angle because at first they were saying that somehow i was doing this on behalf of hillary clinton. and then they found out i was -- law school house mates, dorm mates with ted cruz. he and i actually shared a bathroom the first year of law school. i assure you that had no impact upon our decision. i knew marco rubio in the florida legislature. so -- and i have met mr. trump on a few occasions. i've been to morologo. last time, there were 800 others there. so it's not quite a private setting. so, you know, i do -- the fact that i have a relationship with several of the people who were running for president has no bearing upon our decision in this case. our decision was made solely on the facts, solely on the evidence and solely on the law.
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>> what law school was that where you shared a room or bathroom i guess -- >> it was harvard law school and it was hastings hall. i had a reporter call me to question me a couple weeks ago that somehow that was the reason why i did this, and he asked me when is the last time i spoke to ted cruz, and i believe it was my third year of law school which would have been about 20 years ago. [ inaudible question ] >> in miss ellis memo it talks about how sometimes campaign staff can participate in assisting secret service as forming part of the bubble. i mean, is that written down anywhere? is that codified anywhere? is that just sort of an accepted practice within campaigning? >> i believe that came from the sworn statement from the fbi agent whom we quote in the
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memorandum. >> you made it clear that politics was not a factor in your decision but did people try to influence you politically? >> no, absolutely not. >> can you tell us what's your first name? >> adrian. >> a-d-r-i-a-n? >> yes, sir. >> your title? >> chief assistant state attorney. sure. >> okay. >> all right, so you've been watching this news conference. let me bottom line it. that simple battery charge donald trump's campaign manager had been facing stemming from an incident back in march, that charge has been dropped. listen, this is news, because we're talking about the front-runner on the republican side who wants to become the next president of the united states and this is his campaign manager, corey lewandowski, who is at the center of all of this. a lot to parse through. with me now, cnn legal analyst
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danny cevallos and host of cnn's "reliable sources" brian stelter. so brad, thank you so much for coming on. just out of the gate -- >> thanks for having me. >> -- talk of the drafts of the apologies as we just heard in the news conference, what would your client say, i'm sorry. straight up, your child going to publicly apologize to michelle fields? >> straight up, i don't know. to be quite honest with you, michelle fields is threatening to sue over a defamation case, so we're going to see exactly where this case goes in terms of the civil aspect. the criminal aspect was very interesting because we did meet with the prosecutors. we did present additional evidence that they didn't have. and that additional evidence was the first 15 seconds of that video, where secret service is very clearly directing miss fields to a different area of the ballroom and insisting that she go to that area, which she actually does, but then when an
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agent turns his back, she then goes back to the area she was just told to leave from. that was just one of the many things we gave them in order to establish why we felt that mr. lewandowski's actions were justifiable. the other thing we gave then was an affidavit from barton brown. he is an ex-fbi agent that was the special agent, the supervisory special agent in charge of eric holder's security team, and he looked at the video, he saw the video, he analyzed the video, and he thought that mr. lewandowski's actions were justified as well. >> okay. because i'm glad you pointed that out, because it was clear from palm beach county you all provided something, affidavit or otherwise, that proved to be favorable for your client and your case. but back to the apology bit. so just so i'm hearing you, i know you're saying you're not sure, so if michelle fields, as there has been talk she might file a defamation suit against your client, depending on the status of that suit, will then
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predicate whether or not there's a mea culpa? >> i think so. it's not even a mea culpa. it's really just something -- i think it was justifiable in what he did. miss fields sees it a different way obviously. other individuals that are kind of with miss fields see it a different way. you know, our perception is reality. her perception was she was almost thrown to the ground. a lot of different things going on. in reality, i don't think that was shown on tape. so would he apologize to having any contact with her? certainly, he could. exactly, i don't know what he's going to do. because like i said before, she's threatening civil action. there's other things that are out there. so now we have to kind of step back and take a look at exactly what's going on. >> finally with regard to threatening to sue on defamation, what is the last thing you've heard from her side over the potential suit? >> i really didn't. i just read about it, that she was considering filing a potential civil suit. i don't find it to be that good
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of an idea to file a defamation claim on this kind of case. because it opens up a very large door to your past. it opens up a large door to other things that can be going on. i don't feel that it justifies it but miss fields is going to do what miss fields wants to do. >> all right, brad cohen, thank you so much. criminal defense attorney for corey lewandowski. thank you. let me bring in the panel. danny, you were nodding along. you wanted to know what the affidavit, the materials were that his team provided. interesting that the state's attorney pointed out there was probable cause in jupiter but there office has a different standard. >> it's interesting to hear about the different levels. we know probable cause is a certain level of belief that a crime has been committed. the prosecutor says they have an ethical obligation to go beyond probable cause and only prosecute cases they believe they can prove beyond a
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reasonable doubt. now, a jaded defense attorney might say, yes, there are a lot of cases that barely have probable cause and prosecutors go forward with those all the time. this was a good ethical analysis. that is the prosecutor's job. a prosecutor's job is not to win, it is to do justice and not bring cases that they don't believe they can prove beyond a reasonable doubt or said the other way, that a reasonable belief of innocence exists. that's exactly what they did here in this analysis that i would bet has never been done in any other florida misdemeanor battery case in the history of the great state of florida. >> this is new video they're showing live. perhaps this is what brad cohen was telling us. i can't say for sure whether or not this is the first 15 seconds of video they handed over to law enforcement. this is what's playing out as part of this news conference under way in palm beach county. so let me just pivot to you as we stay on this. you know, michelle fields, she had -- what has she said?
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what's the latest thing she said? >> she has spoken out in the last 24 hours. we are still waiting for her to react -- >> to charge the dropped? >> yes. just to remind our viewers on what she tweeted yesterday. shortly after the news broke over the media that the prosecutor, the prosecution would not be happening, she tweeted for those asking office of prosecutor asked two weeks ago if i would be okay with an apology from corey. i said yeah but haven't heard back about it. something else she tweeted, prosecutor's office told me they would inform me of decision tomorrow if reports true, guess they decided to leak to reporters first, ugh. clearly a sense of frustration she didn't find out from the prosecutor's office but found out through media reports. i think the news about this apology is really fascinating. we saw this get addressed in the news conference. what the state attorney's office said is that an apology is always encouraged, it's always a good idea.
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he also said there was a draft of an apology but it is really up to lieu be do ski's attorney to decide whether they want to present that apology to fields. >> you heard him tell me they may, they may not. he seeped a little agitated they're being threatened with the potential defamation suit. >> you think about the campaign question trump has been asked, when is the last time you made a mistake, the last time you backed down? similar to this strange case. michelle fields quit her job at breitbart because she felt the company didn't support her, so she's now unemployed. i think in some ways she feels scarred by this entire experience. not the few seconds at the press conference but what happened afterwards. that would open up this possibility of a civil action, but of course as the attorney was saying just there, that
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could be very complicated. they're going to bring up her past. trump's campaign suggested she was an attention seeker, she wanted to get this attention. a lot of different things that seemed like a smear of michelle fields. at the end of the day, i'm not sure anyone comes away kind of satisfiy eied by this moment. >> has this dinged the trump campaign at all? >> i think it's important to keep in mind the political ramifications. keep in mind, this is the republican front-runner's campaign manager who was charged with simple battery and now those charges have been dropped. that is a huge sense of relief for both corey lewandowski and trump's campaign. but i would also point out for corey lewandowski, i think he has already felt the ramifications of this case. remember -- >> we haven't seen him do interviews lately, have we? >> he has been a little more silent, a little more hidden away. but remember this campaign has been very insular. unusually so. with him at the top of the hierarchy of the campaign. over the last few weeks, we've
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seen the campaign hire folks like manafort, sort of suggesting that circle around trump is starting to grow, it's not just lewandowski anymore. >> m.j., brian, thank you for that. coming up next, debate night in america, new details about hillary clinton's strategy against bernie sanders in their final face-off before the big new york primary. plus, are senator sanders supporters harassing superdelegates? we will speak live with one who says yes, they certainly are. and the trump campaign today. paying a visit to washington and revealing how they plan to lock up the nomination by june. wait until you hear this. cnn special live coverage from brooklyn coming at you next. when you booked this trip,
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you could save up to $509 call today at see car insurance in a whole new light. liberty mutual insurance. kind of feels like when your teacher back in the day said you could have class outside. we're sitting here in beautiful brooklyn. live at the navy yard where we're counting down to what's shaping up to be the most potentially vitt reyotic and personal debate we've seen this season.
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welcome back. secretary clinton is stepping into the ring with more delegates, more popular votes and more states under her belt, but senator sanders has something she does not. a streak. winning 8 of the past 9 contests. translation, math versus momentum. joining me now, angela rye, cnn political commentator, former director of the congressional black caucus. jeff zeleny with us. senior washington correspondent. david kataney and donna brazile, democratic strategist, vice chair dnc voter project. let's get to it. bernie sanders huge event. thousands of people. spike lee introduces him. but what everyone's talking about today is the bernie sanders surrogate stepping up to the mic and talking about getting rid of corporate whores, corporate democratic whores. >> what? >> was he referring to hillary clinton, members of congress
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right? the issue is bernie sanders who spoke later -- apparently there was huge applause when bernie sanders spoke later, never addressed it. let's give him the benefit of the doubt that he did not hear that comment made. took him 12 hours to disavow. >> donald trump when it comes to tweeting habits overnight, donald trump is the tweetin' king. i'm glad that sanders has distanced himself from what i call obscene remarks. i mean, obscene whether it was directed at secretary clinton whether it's directed at members of the congress. whether it's directed at people like me or you, anybody else. it has no place in our conversation and debate that we're going to have tonight. there are plenty of loyal democrats out there the who, yes, they accept money from pacs, okay, they're competing in very competitive districts, they're running against corporations and special interest money and i'm sorry some of them lost their race. one in particular, my former home state senator, mary landrieu, she supported
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obamacare and they came after her. so sorry, six yr, you don't get call us names. >> he apologized for that. i can tell you the crowd applauded for it somewhat. not nearly as much for tim robbins and others. senator sanders came about half an hour later so he definitely was not there during any of this. i was actually struck by the controversy because in the moment it didn't seem like much. of course you shouldn't say that word. i do not believe at the moment he actually was referring to secretary clinton because he was just praising her the moment before. he's married to lisa ling and he was saying he appreciates the clintons so much because of what bill clinton did to rescue his sister-in-law from north korea, and then he went on to say we need change in our politics to bring medicare for all. then he said because of the whores going on. i think that was obviously a stupid thing to say but i don't think in the moment he was referring to secretary clinton. >> -- versus in the moment then played out over and over.
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tonight, it's taken a negative turn with some of the language that's being used. most recently, the unqualified bit. how negative will the tone be on policy versus personal? >> i think the question is going to be does senator sanders have another play in his playbook? >> how do you mean? >> well, every speech he gives, every debate, what does he focus on, the superpacs? all the money that hillary gets from wall street? >> wall street is just a couple blocks away. >> right. her judgment on the iraq war. we've heard the same sort of lines. >> you want something new? >> yeah, to drive a new narrative. forget the progressives. they're with you. you have to talk to sort of the mainstream democratic voter and raise some concerns about whether she can win a general election. the polling is on his side on this. he beats the republicans by bigger margins. >> what does he say to those moderates? >> i think he has to point to the polling. it's a dicey move because i
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think he has to raise questions that he didn't want to go on before, the e-mail scandal, but he sort of ruled that out prior. but i think he has to raise the risk. look, hillary clinton's great but she obviously has a ton of baggage. now, how he formulates those lines, saying this is not a slam dunk general election for us. but if you elect me, we bring ou out the progressives, i carry in progressive members in the house and the senate, i'm the more electable candidate. i think that's what he has to push for. >> he's got some challenges there. i think he tried a new messaging tactic and it backfired. he tried to question her qualifications. i think what he was trying to do is what you suggested, that there's baggage here that potentially could impact her ability to win in the general. it didn't work. whenever bernie sanders is off his very refined clear very focused, 10,000 foot level message it backfires.
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>> in the editorial board interview where he criticized -- >> exhibit a, just what happens when he gets off talking points, he becomes defensive, feels like people are questioning his credibility. he should be expected to say more than a few talking points about washington. >> what does she say about the '94 crime bill? because that has come back on the trail. we saw the back and forth with bill clinton on the campaign trail last week. even the national action network, about three hours ago, bernie sanders sort of, you know, addressed it subtletsubtl. how does she address that? >> bernie sanders voted for the bill. >> he did, he did. >> there's no question i think that secretary clinton can put it in context of what was happening in 1994. was it a good bill? no, it was a flawed bill in many ways. it was a compromise. there were elements in that bill that even the members of the congressional black caucus did not like. there was a procedural vote that saved the bill. members of the black caucus, this was a moment when black
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pastors, mayors, others say, we have to do something to stop this crime wave in our communities. she has to address it. he has to address it. more importantly what about mass incarceration in the future. think they both have to address it. >> she should say it was the wrong move and pivot. every debate is a new platform and tonight she's got to say it again for new yorkers who haven't tuned into the other debate. >> i think this is one of the moments where senator sanders would be a new candidate if he hadn't had a 30-year record in congress. but he voted for it -- >> he's been in congress for 30 years. >> exactly, he voted for it. if was a new freshman senator who do really go hard against her. but this is one of his challenges here. i don't think this issue has much traction. it is an important issue but she's already apologized for it. >> i have to imagine secretary clinton also has a zinger in her back pocket when it comes to why she's qualified. just a hunch.
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angela, david, donna, jeff, thank you all so much. hours away from the debate it the hall just in front of us in brooklyn. coming up, the ugly side of politics as the fight for delegates becomes increasingly intense. new reports of these superdelegates being pressured, harassed, phone calls, e-mails, by the supporters of rival campaigns. one delegate has written a scathing open letter hoping it will stop. we will talk to him next.
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since day one, senator bernie sanders has referred to his campaign as a political revolution. now it appears from his supports try to revolutionize the party's delegate process, some hillary clinton supporters, some super delegates specifically, report they are being harassed by sanders supporters who want them to flip their allegianallegianc. for example, maine clinton supporter maggie allen told the examiner she gets 25 phone calls a day. quote, i got drunken calls, i was basically being called an elitist, unfair, an undemocratic person. some delegates point to this person for some of this. he apparently brought the web domain that apparently has been deleted. the names and addresses and phone numbers of all of hillary clinton's superdelegates. also the information of uncommitted delegates.
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after the allegations surfaced, he changed the name to superdelegate this official heard about so many of these threats he wrote a letter to the campaign. he joins me now. bob, nice to have you on. >> yeah, welcome to the great state of california led by governor jerry brown. >> well, thank you there, i hope to be in california, but we're here in new york for now, ahead of the big new york primary. let me talk about some of these e-mails. i understand you've gotten some harassing e-mails. what do they say? >> well, i couldn't repeat it on tv, even cable, the vulgar language, but it's mostly the women dnc members that seem to be getting most of the harassment. call also at night, calls at their office, just inappropriate to have political stalkers working for the sanders campaign and it took over a week for the sanders c er ers campaign to de them and that was disappointing. >> how did they know specifically it's the sanders -- let's be specific, sanders campaign or sanders supporters?
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>> well, supporters. but my point was the campaign knew about it the day that hit list came out and was posted. they didn't denounce it until after some publicity a week later. these people say their supporters, some of them even say i didn't vote for obama, like they're proud of that and called the whole system corrupt and then yell at people. i'm mostly concerned about the women democratic delegates to the national convention. >> you know, donna brazile who we just had on, said she's been called every name in the book, she's a superdelegate as well. she said, you know what i respond to those and say i have earned my seat at the table. do you respond? >> we, i don't get many. mostly because of who i am. i think it's very difficult. i've had a lot of conversations by phone and e-mail with the women dnc members. it's very intimidating to them. we have laws in this country against stalkers. clearly in politics, we expect to get calls. but not at nighttime. not threatening. not intimidating. not using vulgar language.
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it's just inappropriate and unnecessary and it doesn't help the sanders people at all. >> you know, can you say 100% that, say, hillary clinton supporters haven't done anything in the neighborhood of -- anything similar to this? >> i have not heard of any. i would assume not. it doesn't mean that somebody now will be popping up trying to lay the groundwork as a defense for sanders. the most important message for everybody is don't go on national tv basically telling people to call superdelegates or dnc members. they're not calling members of congress at 10:30 at night. they're calling dnc members and they seem to be focusing mostly on women. you mentioned one woman who evidently is getting 20 cars a day. well that doesn't surprise me. women are more vulnerable and these men out there know it. >> bob mulholland, thank you for speaking up, appreciate it, in the great state of california,
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thank you. from former political enemy has to potential running mates, just a couple months ago, senator marco rubio was accusing ted cruz of dirty campaign tricks. now wait until you hear what cruz has to say about rubio coming up. is better for your skin than wearing no makeup at all? neutrogena® cosmetics. with vitamins and antioxidants. now with foundations in shades for more skin tones.
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our most advanced formula for joint health and comfort. cosamin -- proven by more research than any leading joint supplement. we're back here live in brooklyn, new york. democrats hours away from squaring off. the republicans are waging an all-out battle. some call it a death match to reach that imagimagic number. otherwise they will be heading to a contested convention in
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cleveland. ted cruz tells cnn donald trump and his supporters are growing so desperate he said they resorted to threats and intimidation. >> they're acting like union boss thugs and in colorado, i spoke yesterday to the chairman of the republican party in colorado. trump supporters put out his home address, put out his phone numbers. he got thousands of phone calls. he got death threats. were telling their supporters, go to the house and bring guns. look, violence doesn't belong. the trump campaign encourages it over and over. in indiana, police are reporting threats of violence against delegates from the trump campaign. >> want to start my panel on that comment, talking about the republic republicans. i have with me cnn political commentators s.e. cupp, margaret hoover. ladies, nice to see you. i feel like they're all sort of doing there, you're intimidating
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this isn't fair, they're complaining. s.e., who has the most room you think to complain? >> well, anyone who is not on the trump side is getting -- i mean, i speak for myself, you know, threatens, intimidated. it's not fun to not be on the trump train. takes some courage and some thick skin. >> you're getting threatened? >> oh, for sure, daily. it's really nasty. >> phone calls, e-mails? >> yes, yes. yeah, it's really nasty. and, you know, i put the blame not squarely on the trump campaign shoulders but i think they deserve some of it for inciting that kind of vitriol among people who don't really agree with them. look, ted cruz is doing a masterful job of organizing and really showing that -- getting these delegates are important and you have to know the system to do it. and so ted cruz should be really
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proud of that organization. and i think if it goes to a contested convention and gets beyond the first ballot that bodes very well for him. >> as a donald trump supporter, as a woman, you're hearing our friends, you know, the threats she gets, and others apparently do as well, how do you defend that? >> it goes both ways. no way can you defend any sort of threat. i receive threats too. being on the trump train is not easy either. there's a lot going both ways. the trump campaign has come out and said we renounce violence. indiana co-chair said it is unacceptable for any supporter to call a delegate. like you said, the point you made at the beginning is a very important one. there's accusations flying. you had governor kasich come out and say the cruz campaign was bullying and strong arming delegates in michigan. there are accusations. it's unacceptable. i think to put the blame on one person or crazy people alleging
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violence is, you know -- >> let me move on. let's talk about this potential for this contested convention. i was watching this morning. an rnc rules member by the name of randy evans. he was on. he was saying if donald trump gets to that 1,100 mark, then perhaps, i think reading between the lines, he's inferring the unbound delegates, throw all of them in, and he will 1,237. >> what randy did was go back and clarify what he meant -- >> -- going to give it to him. >> and he's not saying he doesn't have to hit the 1,237. he was guesstimating if he gets there, between all the other unbound delegates. turns out marco rubio of his 172 delegates, some 34 of them are unbound. that's oklahoma, from minnesota. so yes, i mean -- >> back of the napkin math is good. >> -- pull it together, it's back of the napkin math though. >> agree? >> agreed. >> let's hope he gets there? >> i thing trump gets all the
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delegates before we get to the convention. >> i think so too. >> i mean, best estimates, you look at nate silver, it's going to come down to these 53 micro primaries, right, which is california, and how many first, second third do each of the delegates get. it really comes down to california. best estimates subject he won't quite get to the 1,237 threshold. >> what about the potential vp candidates? cruz was on talking to anderson last night and he was saying he would not rule out marco rubio. we all remember the slamming back and forth and now perhaps -- he didn't say directly. refused to rule him out. said even his credentials in the 2010 senate run inspired ted cruz to run in 2012. >> that's very nice. that's very nice language. >> this always happens, you know, you have people who spar on stage and you look and you say there's no way these people could ever get along and we're on the same ticket and yet it always happens. seeing ben carson endorse donald trump. when they exchanged insults. and that was not good.
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>> or chris christie. >> but they move forward. same with barack obama and hillary clinton. there were some awful accusations that went both ways in 2008 but they all came together because that is what parties are supposed to do. >> talking to smart people on my show such as you ladies, folks have thrown out that could be part of the dealings to get trump to that number or to get cruz closer and closer if it companies to a second ballot. perhaps governor kasich if you join my side, you can give me your delegates. >> that's exactly why kasich is staying still in the race. these delegates, all the power they have. you better believe there's all sorts of horse trading. >> that's why trump was caught so off guard. because this sort of delegate, you know, the fight for delegates is something that actually happens a year ago. >> it's a thing. >> it's hugely important part of running for president. trump seems to have this sort of like middle school idea of how you become president, which is, you know, you just be the most popular person. that's not how it works.
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the delegate fight is incredibly important. and the infrastructure that goes into courting these delegates and setting yourselves up for this competition at the convention happens months ago. so he's really catching up now. >> se's right now, he wasn't prepared for this, absolutely, but there is something to be said for challenging the rules when 66% of people in your party disagree with them and say that whoever has the most delegates going into the convention -- >> the question is -- >> you should learn the rules -- >> but when the people you represent don't like the rules, then perhaps it's tyke to change them. >> that's a completely separate conversation. >> that's something we talk about after november. >> right. >> kayleigh, s.e. and margaret, thank you so much. now this. all right, and we roll on. you're watching cnn on this beautiful thursday here, beautiful blue skies, brooklyn, new york. we're at the navy yard. you're watching cnn special coverage of the democratic presidential debate. in just about -- we've got the countdown clock for you, less
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than six hours away now. before bernie sanders will get his final chance to take on hillary clinton face-to-face. before the pivotal primary here in new york, next tuesday, sanders was born here, clinton was elected here no doubt about it, the state is very special to both of these candidates. so how will they treat such hallowed ground? will issues prevail over insults? people are asking because this is the first debate since senator sanders said secretary clinton was quote/unquote unqualified to be president. jeff zeleny is up first here. cnn's jeff zeleny inside the dougal greenhouse which has been transformed into the magical debate hall. jeff zeleny, talk to me, first up, secretary clinton's strategy this evening. >> well, brooke, i mean, we've seen eight debates already. this is the ninth debate. this is a different moment i can tell you. talking about new york and brooklyn. the clinton campaign headquarters ground zero of their campaign is right here in brooklyn. sanders was born here. this is a decisively local
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debate. there are going to be local issues that are playing a big roll in this. for the last week or so is i've been stuck by senator sanders going after clinton hard on fracing in upstate new york. on wall street here in new york city. so i think we're going to see a much more of a localized debate than some of the others we've seen. brooke, the reason this is an important moment is it's really one of the last best chances for the sanders campaign, for senator sanders himself to make the case to voters who may like what he's been saying but are not sure about his ability to either be elected or get it done. that's what he's really trying to do today. for the clintons, they're just trying to sort of hold steady here. she's been doing some debate prep, although not nearly as much as some of the other debates. she's been at her house just outside of new york city in chappaqua with some of her advisers, going through some things. we can really expect a head-to-head confrontation of what they've been saying long distance over the last week or so. she is going to raise questions about if he's really able to get
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all of these plans done or is the spotlight for new york, you know, glaring spotlight here really, you know, shining a light on some of the things that his plans sound better than they actually are here. so i think tonight's debate, some of the issues are similar, but it is a different moment in this campaign, because it's probably the last democratic debate between these two. not necessarily but probably. and it really is a time where senator sanders has to, you know, not only make points, he has to make a big move here, because we're nearing the end of this long democratic primary fight, brooke. >> all right, jeff zeleny, thank you very much. just inside where that debate will be held in just over -- just about six hours from now. let me bring in our panel. thank you, my friend. our panel which includes the author of this book "buyer's remorse," how obama let progr s progressives down." bill sanders. also with me, political commentator van jones, former
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official in the obama white house. chief political analyst gloria borger. and political commentator charles blow, columnist with "the new york times." welcome. i know you're taking pictures before we're going live. >> absolutely. >> this is such a beautiful set. >> it is. >> beginning with still much talk about this whores's remark last night. this is the bernie sanders rally. this is when, you know, a surrogate came up and mentioned -- we don't know who he was referring to, members of congress, hillary clinton, some critics have pointed out. the issue is that about half an hour later, bernie sanders was speaking. i'm told by jeff zeleny, he wasn't even there, so he didn't hear the comment, but he didn't disavow the comment until 12 hours later. as a bernie sanders supporter, was 12 hours too long? >> first of all, the remark was absolutely outrage, unacceptable. >> whoever you're with? >> whoever the candidate, yes.
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i am not going to fault bernie sanders. he did not hear the remark. i wish he had done it sooner, but he did it and that's the most important thing. >> gloria borger, thoughts? >> yes, you know, everybody who's covered politics knows that sometimes your south korur go a little bit off script. >> just a little. >> i think that's what happened here and you have to move quickly. >> and he apologized. i think it's one of those lines that you use with a small group and it works and you tuesday with your buddy on the phone and you use in a rally and you're like, i should never have said this, and he apologized. >> apparently it wasn't that huge of a moment if you were at the rally it wasn't that big a thing according to jeff who was in the crowd, but then later when you get the sound -- >> that happens in politics, right? >> it's 27,000 people there. so it may not have been a bigger deal. the video captures, however, very distasteful, which is that people in the front roar when he
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said that. it makes it even worse in a way. it is, again, he apologized for it. he disavowed it. great. you know, a few hours -- maybe it should have been a few hours. he did the right thing. it's just that the tone of it becomes a problem. i think we keep seeing people make faux pass. clinton doing it. people trying to cheer him on when he's defending the superpredator comment and the 1994 crime bill and the people in the audience kind of cheering at that moment, it makes you cringe. you watch this and he says that and people cheer and it makes you cringe. >> we also have that colored people time moment -- >> but you heard growning -- >> you heard it right away. but i think, you know, some of this stuff in the heat of the battle is very important to people. but i think there are deeper issues in the party that this stuff just becomes the excuse to talk about. >> let me pivot, charles brought it up, you're so passionate about mass incarceration and
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everything else. with the '94 crime bill coming back up and percolating. we know sanders at the time supported it as well. both of whom have said perhaps it went a little too far at the time. he addressed it at the national action network at the noon event. it's going to come up tonight. what does he say? >> well, look, i think she has gotten it right more than wrong. i mean, she has said at that time people felt a certain way. her very first special, as you point out many times, was saying, haip hey, we overshot the runway, and has put forth ideas to fix it. bill clinton came back out and the big dog kind of made a mess on the carpet so now you have to go back and relitigate it. the most important voice is not on the stage. it's the young black lives matter. people who have raised this issue. say i know you guys thought you were doing the right thing in the '90s but you have destroyed our neighborhoods with this and you've got to stop. >> bill clinton clearly made a
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huge mistake. >> huge. >> and then -- because he was defending his own administration, right? and then the next day, he came back and apologized. >> no, he almost kind of -- >> we, but it's clear to me he got a lot of guf at home or from the -- from the clinton campaign which said wait a minute, we have been spending our lives during this campaign trying to walk that back. and then he went out there and so it becomes yet another -- >> this is also a social media generation, right, so not only is it, you know, we overshot the runway but people are looking back at what were you saying at the time. bernie sanders has a passionate floor speech where he's saying this is going to be a problem and hillary during the same period of time is saying, you know, the super predators and using that sort of language so people can now look back on that and juxtapose it and it does not come off well for her. forget about whether or not you had the unintended consequences.
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what were you saying in the heat of battle right? the problem for bernie sand sers you can't have it both ways. you can't say on the one hand, with part of this, and therefore i voted for it and even though i kind of swallowed something, but then say on the bailouts that, you know, i'm going to let detroit go belly up because i didn't like the banks. because you were able -- you're going to have these conflicts. you're going to have to pick and choose. i know this. he said it out of his own mouth in the moment. i know this is going to have disastrous effects on the black community. and i'm still going to vote for it. so you can't have it both ways. >> let me move off of this and i'm going to turn to you because i want to ask about president obama made news when he spoke with fox news over the weekend and was asked about his biggest mistake and he flat out said it was the day after the moammar gadhafi was taken down in libya and the question is, as secretary of state, how does hillary clinton, you know, bear hug the president tonight on the
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stage but make sure that time doesn't haunt her on the trail? >> it's going to be a little tricky dance i think. there's no doubt. libya is hb hillary clinton's baby. she's the one who pushed it. susan rice did it. secretary of state. that atlantic interview with president obama, very, very telling. he said he resisted it. finally said, if they're feeling so strongly about it. he went along with it. now he says it's his biggest mistake and it has hillary clinton's name all over it. i don't know how she gets out of it. i don't think she's going to say it was a mistake. i think she'll say we did the right thing at the time. but we didn't anticipate maybe what was going to follow. because now it's a training base for isis now. >> in new york, this is not the big issue. i think -- i mean, it's just not. foreign policy for this particular democratic primary, surprisingly, even in new york, has not been the been deal. i think it's the economic
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issues, these gender issues, have been more of consequence to these voters. so i wonder how consequence chul it will be tonight. >> interesting in the middle east, support for israel becomes a huge issue. in new york, which by the way, so far, it hasn't as much as one would have expected and we'll have to see how that plays out. >> if i can. >> go ahead, please. >> they say bernie sanders is too weak on foreign policy. bernie sanders can come back and say you're supposedly the expert on foreign policy and look at iraq and what about libya. >> all he has to say is you moved us from superpredators to superpredator drones. >> oh. >> wow. >> if can link the language you were using back then to the kind of military kind of posture she has now. that is it. >> let's move on to your point. we're in new york and an issue obviously is economics and wall
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street reform. a couple of train stops away from wall street. he's been criticized and ultimately the "new york daily news" is endorsing clinton based upon that big conversation they had. how does he right that wrong? >> well. >> i don't know how -- >> look, i think what he does is he says, as his wife has been saying, this was kind of an inquisition, this interview. he said these are issues i've been working on my whole life and, by the way, the banks are not ready to deal with their problems yet. and then he starts talking about hillary clinton's campaign contribution. i also believe, by the way, he's going to raise the verizon speech issue, about her ties to corporate america and, you know, i think that's how he -- i think that's how he starts doing it. >> i think bernie can be foesh given for messing up a newspaper
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editorial board interview. he can come back and say, here's how. those are the things you can study and get right. he just wasn't ready then. i don't think that people who don't like bernie is going to be moved either way about the specifics. i think there's something else happening in this party. there is a big struggle. it's generational. between are you primarily about being principled and then using this to get there, or being pragmatic and having your principles inform your pragmatism? i think that is much more explanatory. i think what's happening is generationally, hillary clinton may win the presidency, i think bernie's going to win the party. she might be the president but it's going to be his party because he's made it okay to have really big dreams again. whether or not you know in this meeting or that meeting how you're going to get them done. >> i don't know if -- >> final thought, final thought. >> there are two parties, right, there is the southern and the northern urban parties, right,
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and i think that he wins the northern and urban across the country party. i think that she keeps the party as it exists in large parts of the south and in kind of the rust belt. >> just can't believe i stumped you. speechless. speechless in brooklyn. charles, gloria, bill, van, thank you all. thank you. all right. again, let me remind you, we are six hours away from the big event this evening here in brooklyn. 9:00 eastern, hillary clinton and bernie sanders debate, only here live on cnn, do not miss that. just ahead, he is not a republican. he is not a democrat. but he is, in fact, running for president. libertarian gary johnson joins me live on the race and what he thinks of mr. trump. plus, christine o'donnell, former tea party senate candidate who famously proclaimed she was not a witch, she will join me live as to whether she thinks the system is rigged. we continue our live coverage
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all right, everyone, live in brooklyn at the site of tonight's cnn democratic debate, about an hour's drive from here on long island. protesters will be gathering to express their outrage over trump's visit. he's scheduled to speak tonight. the site is only a short distance from where ecuadorian immigrant was killed in 2008 in a hate crime attack by a group of white teenagers. his family and others have pushed to get trump's speech canceled. >> to invite donald trump to speak but a few hundred yards from this spot where his brother was killed as a result of a hate
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crime is -- it's an outrage for the immigrant community. for donald trump to come and speak here is sacrilegious. it is akin to inviting osama bin laden to speak at ground zero. >> wow. wow. let's go now live to sara. are you seeing any signs of protesters there, sara, not yet? >> good afternoon, brooke. it's not supposed to start for another 45 minutes but as you mentioned, as you heard from people who live here, we've seen protests across the country, people speaking out against some of the language from donald trump particularly on immigration issues. in this neighborhood, it is more personal than just protesting. they're actually getting ready, i'll show you, to do a peaceful demonstration here on this street and the reason why they're out here, the reason why
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they're so upset, brooke, is right here, this is the home, we're standing here in front of it where marcelo lucero was attacked by a group of teenagers because he was hispanic, he was beaten, he was stabbed and he died here. this is just a few steps away, just about two or three blocks from the site of this fund-raiser when donald trump will be speaking tonight. we're expecting about 1,500 people to show up. it's a paid fund-raiser. the money going to the republican party here, the republican party chair saying that the location, brooke, was a coincidence, but that the tensions in this community between the latino community and others who live here on long island are indicative of a broken immigration system and that's what donald trump will be speaking here about. as you saw, the protesters also want to be here. they say the language that he uses is hateful and not progress i and not helpful to their community and they just want to
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be here and they want to show that they're not okay with this, that they're insulted by this, brooke. >> sara, we will stay with you and of course see what folks say when they do start appearing at that event in 45 minutes. meantime, donald trump is promoting a protest of his own. a quote/unquote big march protest tomorrow in colorado, doubling down on his accusations that the republican convention there involved in selecting those delegates was rigged. reince priebus, the head of the rnc, and the rnc say trump knew the rules for securing delegates when he signed up to run for president. mr. trump says this is just another example how he's challenging the establishment. my next guest takes issue with that. she's a former tea party congressional candidate. she's laughing already. she's christine o'donnell, arguably one of the first candidates in this movement of challenging the establishment. nice to see you, thanks for hang out today. >> thank you for having me. >> we talked before at length. i know how you feel about donald trump.
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>> i love him, just kidding. >> to his point about the system, do you agree at all that it is rigged? >> okay, well, first, let me clarify. what i take the most issue with, what i get offended, is when people call him anti-establishment. but specifically to you question about do i think the system rigged, i think his fundamental argument is flawed. because the system itself is built upon the 10th amendment. the party apparatus, the primary process, is the process by which the party, the republican party and the democratic party, choose who's going to represent them in the general election. it's not the time for the american people to have their voice heard. that's in the general election. so the local state parties set up the rules that party members have to follow. so it's a system that's in place
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to protect local sovereignty and to protect the sovereignty of the states. >> it's a system you have to sign up for and agree to when you jump in. but at the end of the day, like after the hanging chads in florida in 2000 and the help america vote act, i mean, do you think -- he's sort of pointing out, i don't know if this is fair? >> see, what he's doing, again, we have to break this down. because he's making an overall statement and only little pieces are correct. yes, there's corruption in the political system. but the system itself is what the party built itself on. >> okay. >> and that's in my opinion what he's doing. if you remember, he took that pledge, he took that oath, he said i'm going to support the republican nominee, oh, wink wink as long as they're fair. this is a fair process. but what he's doing is he's making sure that he has an out to break his pledge. donald trump's going to the general election one way or the other. as an independent candidate or as the republican nominee. >> you think so?
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>> that's what all this hoop law is about. >> think so. let's throw trump out. any of the candidates actually running. we heard house speaker paul ryan the other day say listen, please, delegates, do not put me on the ballot. if this comes to a contested conventi, you actually need to nominate somebody who's actually running for president. there was a piece in "the new york times" where we talked about possible savior candidates. if you could pick one name out of a hat, you think could be a savi savior, not cruz, trump or even gary johnson, who would you pick? >> elizabeth mccord. if you watch "madam secretary," you know what i'm talking about. >> i don't watch tv. >> she's amazing. >> so a fictional character. >> exactly. >> how about a real one? >> here's the thing, i don't think that would be fair. none of the candidates -- although i like cruz, i was more excited about scott walker, you know, so he's by process of
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elimination for me. i'm even hesitant to say that -- >> process of elimination, christine o'donnell. why are you not owning it? >> because i will, i will. what i'm saying in terms of who i would want as the savior candidate, having gone through a grueling campaign myself, come on, don't do that. >> should be one of the candidates? >> absolutely. unless you're going to make the sacrifices, put your name on the line, put your reputation on the line, put your family at risk, you don't deserve to be the republican nominee. >> moving off the somie savior , the bit about cruz, i feel like you're inching closer to saying i endorse ted cruz. rubio the other day said sort of the same. process of elimination, seep seems like the most conservative candidate,er go, ted cruz. why the half baked endorsements? >> i'm a huge ted cruz fan,
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please don't get me wrong, i'm a champion of his in the senate, but my hesitation is for two reasons. number one, is because i really could hate to see him leave the senate. i am passionately excited about a majority leader cruz in the senate. so we need him there. the second part of this is it's intertwined with trump. the thing about trump right now is he throws out these unrealistic policy so-called solutions that break all kinds of treaties, that trample all over the constitution, but it taps into a visceral response and anger that the american voter has right now, so that's why you see people flocking behind him. on the other side, we have bernie sanders doing that. hollywood calls it the it factor. i think cruz lacks that it factor. so it makes me concerned.
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especially now, there might be a brokered against and we might have a sanders candidate on the other side. could cruz rally enough passion to go against that. and, again, people are going to -- haters are going to hate. they're going to say, i hate cruz. no, i love cruz. and i will do -- hey, cruz campaign, i will do whatever's needed if you think i can be helpful. i'm just saying i think that's why there's a reluctance, because we need that it factor this election. >> christine o'donnell, always a pleasure. coming up next on the democratic side, hillary clinton, bernie sanders, face-to-face tonight here in brookl brooklyn. the only democratic debate left on the calendar ahead of important new york primary. david chalian joins me right here with his three most important thing to watch for tonight at the cnn debate. we'll be right back.
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welcome back. it is half past the hour here on this thursday. we're sitting along the east river in brooklyn hours ahead of the big democratic debate. tonight, they're trying to prove who is more new york, the final face-off for hillary clinton and bernie sanders before the primary. secretary clinton stepping into the debate ring with more delegates, more popular votes and more states under her belt. senator sanders has something she does not, a streak. winning 8 of the 9 past
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contests. translation this is math versus momentum. but what are the key things we should be watching for? i turn to this guy, david chalian, cnn political director, my guru of all things political, with all of the answers and more. mr. chalian, item number one what are you watching for? >> you just hit it with the streak. this is sanders's moment. he's on this winning streak. think about it in sports. he's now gotten the ball down the field. he now needs to convert to a touchdown, right? so he has this string of victories. he has a great crowd last night in manhattan. now he has to seize this moment and actually do something on the debate stage that up-ends the trajectory of the race in new york. either he has to choose to open up a new avenue of attack he thinks will be successful to take her down a peg or two. that may be what it needs to be. he can't just keep doing what he's doing because it's only getting him to this place. she's leading the polls in
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new york. he need to take this moment in time for him and convert it so it can extend because now the math starts going favorably towards her. >> that's the sanders moment. what's item number two? >> clinton's tone and temperature. that's something to look at as well. i'm very curious to know, does she feel at all threatened by that winning streak he's on? her campaign is constantly pointing to the math. she's got the delegate lead. he is not going to overtake her. so they have this calm sense about we are going to be the nominee. well, does she come in with that tonight? is she rattled in anyway? we've seen her on the trail say things like, it doesn't sound like he may have done his homework in certain areas. well, brooke, does she kind of bring that talk from the trail face-to-face with him tonight? or do we see her try to lower the temperature a little bit and set her sites a little bit towards november. that's one thing i'm watching for when it comes to clinton. >> okay, clinton tone. what is the third and final thing you're watching for? >> look at where we are.
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>> new york. >> the new york state of mind. the issues in new york that have been playing out in this new york campaign are some of the biggest issues that have been playing out in the democratic primary overall. wall street is right across the river. >> yep. >> criminal justice reform, has been a big debate here in new york and totally a big debate inside the primary. environmental issues like fracing. guns an issue. these are some of the real issues that sanders and clint have been been squaring off on. they've come to fruition in new york because this is a place dealing with all those issues in the news. now in a place where all those major issues are front and center and they're going to have to confront each one tonight. >> it's the chalian cheat sheet. my executive producer has officially said that. the chalian cheat sheet ahead of the big debate here tonight in brooklyn, thank you as always. coming up next, could this crazy unprecedented -- fill in your adjective" election year be the right moment for a third
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party candidate? the libertarian candidate gary johnson joins us.
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there's no limit to how much you can earn and this savings applies to every vehicle on your policy. call to learn more. switch to liberty mutual and you could save up to $509. call liberty mutual for a free quote today at see car insurance in a whole new light. liberty mutual insurance. did you realize there are more than five people running for president of the united
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states. and among those who do not have an "r" or a "d" next to their name is libertarian gary johnson. former new mexico governor. ran in 2012. won a million votes. in last month's poll, he got 11% of the vote in a hypothetical matchup. now, governor johnson says he wants in on the general election debates this fall. he has a lot more to say i'm sure. governor johnson joins me now. nice to have you on, welcome. >> brooke, great to be on with you. yeah, there's no way a third party gets elected president of the united states if they're not in the president debates. of course that hasn't happened since ross perot. you mentioned earlier -- >> i know, you know, you filed suit, but i know exactly who you are and i know a number of people do as well but i want to give you 60 seconds to tell
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americans who are thinking, hang on a second. 60 seconds, tell americans who you are and why you want to be president. >> well, i've been an entrepreneur my entire life. i'm also an athlete. i've never run for political office prior to becoming elected governor in new mexico as a republican in a state that's 2-1 democrat. really made a name for myself being fiscally conservative. i may have vetoed more legislation than the other 49 governors in the country combined. but coupled with being fiscally conservative is the notion of being socially liberal. the fact that you and i should be allowed to live our lives as we see fit as long as those decisions don't adversely effect others. so in 1999, i was the highest elected official in the country to call for the legalization of marijuana. the fact that the drug war rages on. the fact that 20 million americans but for our drug laws
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would otherwise be tax paying law abiding citizens and, you know what, there is a very real islamic terrorist threat but let's stop with our military interventions. they have unintended consequences that are making things worse, not better. >> all right. so thank you. this is an essence of who you are. my next question, we talk about this political system, especially the primary process. do you agree with trump when he says the system is rigged? >> well, the system is rigged. i've never had an issue with being at 15% in the polls to be in the presidential debate. my issue, book, is not even being in the polls who determine who is in the debates. the monmouth poll came out, had me at 11%. i thing it's legitimate to have included my name because libertarian party's going to be on the ballot in all 50 states. i am the presumptive nominee.
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nobody else is going to be able to lay claim to that. i think hillary and trump are the two most polarizing figures in american politics today. when 50% of americans say they're independent. you know what, i think the majority of people in this country are libertarian, they just don't know it and speaking with a broad brush stroke, fiscally responsible, socially liberal. that's where most of us lie i think. >> i hear you on, you know, these two on the opposite end. with trump and hillary clinton. my question then would be what about the supporters? what about trump supporters? what do you think of them? >> well, i've been there, i've been in new hampshire. i've been in iowa. and what i've recognized is that 30% of the republican vote believes that the scourge of the earth is mexican immigration. brooke, i was the voice out there saying immigration's really a good thing, that this
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is really a political boogie man, it doesn't exist. mexicans are really hard working. they're taking jobs that americans don't want. it's not an issue of wages unless it's an issue of language and they're the first ones that recognize that. so let's make it as easy as possible for somebody who wants to come across the border and work to be able to get a work visa, not a green card, not citizenship. but this notion of building a wall across the border, that's is ridiculous, that's crazy. >> okay. of all the candidates running for president, who would you say you're most in line with? >> well, so i want to make a pitch to everybody watching now. get online. take the political quiz i side really you answer a number of questions. pretty easy. then you get paired up with the presidential candidate most in line with your views.
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brooke, the next -- >> have you taken this quiz? >> -- person i agree with most is bernie sanders. so that really -- first off, there's the shock, what, bernie? well, then there's the realization of, oh, i get it. the fact that bernie attracts social liberals. the fact that let's stop bombing. let's -- marriage equality, legalizing marijuana. look, he's a social liberal. so am i. we part ways when it comes to economic policy. i do believe there's going to be some really negative consequence to the fact that we continue to borrow and spend more money than what we take in. >> i'm sure that will come up tonight here at the debate between bernie sanders and hillary clinton. i see your ear piece back in. one more question for you, you can still hear me? >> i can hear you, thank you. >> final question, i want you to finish my sentence. if donald trump becomes the next
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president of the united states? >> then i am going to wake up from that nightmare and realize that it was a nightmare. not going to happen. >> okay. gary johnson, running to be the next president of the united states and the libertarian party ticket. good luck, sir is thank you so much. >> brook, thank you, bye. >> coming up next, cnn obtained a proof of life video showing some of the more than 200 girls kidnapped by the terrorist group boko haram two years ago. please do not miss this incredibly compelling report. [vet] two yearly physicals down.
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nearly two years ago, boko haram kidnapped 276 nigerian school girls, stolen out of their beds, their fates unknown, until now. video obtained by cnn shows that at least some of the school girls kidnapped in northern nigeria were alive as recently as december. senior international correspondent, our producer and
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photojournalist sebastian canobes have this heart-breaking report. >> reporter: lined up against a yellow wall, 15 girls, only their faces showing. an off camera voice asks each girl, what's your name. is that the name your parents recognize? where were you taken from, the voice asks. a school and the date they say is the 25th of december, 2015. this video was obtained by cnn from a person close to the negotiations to get these girls released. for the parents, it's finally a glimmer of hope these girls are still alive. two years ago, we met mary and two others on our visit after the abduction of their daughters and more than 200 other girls. we asked them if they recognize any of the girls in the video.
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they lean closer. another girl is identified. one by one, they name all 15 girls. but one mother realizes her daughter isn't there. the off camera voice asking the questions is familiar to cnn as that of boko haram spokesman. a source close to negotiations between boko haram and the nigerian government said the video was provided by the terror group as an asked for show of good faith. nigeria's information minister told cnn they have received the video but are still reviewing it. >> you study the video and find out the questions that are asked are very controlled environment. we are a bit concerned too that
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after two years in captivity the girls in the video were under no stress whatsoever, there has been little or no transformation to their physical appearance. >> is your government negotiating with boko haram for the release of these girls? >> there are ongoing talks. we cannot ignore leads, but of course many of these investigatio investigations cannot be disclosed openly because it could also endanger the negotiations. >> reporter: we took the video to a classmate of the girls. she had been at home with family the day the other girls were kidnapped. for her safety, we're not showing her face and not using her name.
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she told us there's no doubt these are some of her kidnapped classmates. >> translator: these two were prefects. i'm reminded how we used to play together, to our chores, do our homework. >> reporter: she says seeing her friends again will likely give her nightmares. >> translator: sometimes still if i hear news about them i have bad dreams and wake up kroig. >> reporter: the video ends with a girl addressing the camera with a message to the nigerian government. we are all well, she says, pointedly. perhaps suggesting girls not seen in this video. she then delivers what sounds like a scripted play, urging the nigerian government to fulfill unspecified promises. for the mothers of these girls rapidly becoming women far from home, the video is overwhelming. they say they just want someone to bring their daughters home.
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it is debate night in brooklyn and how sweet it is. "the lead" starts right now. they battled over who is more new york, who is more of a democrat, who is even qualified to run the country. tonight it's the final face-off for hillary clinton and bernie sanders before tuesday's huge empire state primary, and it will be live here on cnn. it's the first time in decades that a new york presidential primary actually matters for both parties. new york city mayor bill de blasio along with new york governor andrew cuomo will both join me live to talk about what's at stake for their party and for the country.