tv The Place for Politics 2016 MSNBC February 17, 2016 6:00am-2:01pm PST
bit as contentious as what happened in 2008. and on the republican side, it could be over in the next couple of weeks. >> who would have been on that? >> nobody. absolutely nobody. >> steve kornacki picks up our coverage from south carolina right now. we will see you there tonight at 8:00 p.m. ♪ ♪ and good wednesday morning to you. i'm steve kornacki live from columbia, south carolina, the soda city. i'm not kidding. that's what they call it down here. my kind of town. also, home of the gamecocks, the university of south carolina and the state capitol. msnbc is live on the ground here. we are just three days away from the pivotal south carolina republican presidential primary
in the already ugly slug fest here. well, it is getting uglier. donald trump calling ted cruz unfit, calling him a liar. not the first time we've heard donald trump talking this way about his rival. cruz says trump isn't really a conservative. marco rubio just trying to get heard through all of that noise. live pictures here now out of mount pleasant where rubio is getting ready to hold a town hall event. now we have new numbers here. a new poll of likely republican primary voters in south carolina. it shows donald trump maintaining that commanding lead, 16 points over ted cruz. rubio a bit off the pace at 14 points. jeb bush barely in double digits. combining support for cruz and rubio. still wouldn't get either one of them on par with the front-runner. that is how big donald trump's event is here right now. that same poll does show that half the voters here in south carolina haven't made up their minds. again, with just three days to go and we should also mention we have at this hour some other new numbers from across the country
because on the heels of south carolina this saturday we'll come next tuesday the nevada republican caucuses. look at this, donald trump leading far and away in nevada with 45%, marco rubio a very distant second, 19%. ted cruz just behind him and how about this, jeb bush all the way back at 1% in the silver state. again, that comes next tuesday. south carolina the main event this saturday. here in the state we will see the other republican candidates throughout the day fanning out more than a dozen events planned by those candidates today including msnbc's exclusive town hall tonight with donald trump, 8:00 p.m. eastern live. you are not going to want to miss that. and today the front-runner, trump, is defending himself against the latest critic of his candidacy, president obama. >> i continue to believe mr. trump will not be president. >> he has done such a lousy job as president. >> it's not hosting a talk show or a reality show.
>> he has set us back so far, and for him to say that actually is a great compliment. >> i am not unhappy that i am not on the ballot. >> you're lucky i didn't run last time. >> and we begin our political coverage this morning with our correspondents. they are spread out all across the state. nbc's kerry sanders, dave gutierrez and peter alexander. kerry, let's start with you. he's sending up the attacks on cruz even though he got the lead in the poll. that's what you expect in stanley cup from him. >> reporter: well, i'm in sumter, south carolina, and donald trump will be here to meet with voters. inside the soda fountain which is attached to the cut rate drugstore, this is the oldest restaurant in sumter and in south carolina established in 1935. but we have some voters sitting here having coffee this morning.
geraldine is here. i'm curious, when you hear the back and forth between the president and donald trump, how does that make you feel as a voter to hear that sort of rhetoric? >> well, it makes me feel that there's too much against each other. i don't think they should be bringing each other down. stick with what you want to do. >> reporter: you're a south carolina voter. when he thinks that voters are going to be more sensible than to elect donald trump, what do you think? >> well, i don't know. donald trump's saying a lot of things that people want to hear and everybody else is afraid to say and, you know, we did elect mr. obama twice and he wasn't the popular choice in this state anyway. >> reporter: i'm curious, as you look at this, you know, what's coming right down to saturday, there's not much time left, geraldine, have you decided who you're going to vote for and if
so, what drives your vote? >> yes, sir, i've decided who i'm going to vote for. >> reporter: will you share it with us? >> yes, i'm going to vote for hillary. >> reporter: vote for hillary. do you note why you decided to vote for her or is it a gutt feeling? >> it's a gutt feeling really. >> reporter: how about yourself, harold? >> i haven't decided. i will be voting saturday in the republican primary. i'm leaning probably towards rubio but i haven't made that final decision yet. >> reporter: so you're one of those voters who will walk into the booth and maybe make your decision right then? >> no, when i go in i'll know which way i'm going to vote, but i'm still open to, i guess, suggestions, open to more information and it's coming every day. i know mr. trump's going to be in sumter tonight. i've got tickets to hear mr. trump speak and then i will, you know, watch the news and see who wins my vote. >> reporter: okay. well, both, thank you very much. i'll let you sit here. we'll come back and join you.
we'll talk more politics. a lot of people in tiny sumter as they are across the state watching, looking, listening, and as we heard, trying to make their decisions. some have already decided, still others about to make their decisions. steve. >> kerry sanders on the trump beat. let's turn to peter alexander. been keeping tabs on jeb bush. peter, this is it for the jeb bush campaign. they've been pointed to south carolina. they pointed to the debate. they brought in former president george w. bush. not seeing any movement in the polls. what are you hearing from them? >> reporter: well, obviously this is not what they thought this would look like here in south carolina. it's a state that, as you know it, has embraced the bush family in the past. h.w. bush performed well here winning his primaries, w., 43, performed well. i was with jeb bush yesterday on the trail. we spent time privately on his bus as well and i asked him about if south carolina is his last stand. he says much the same way as
this sort of presumptive front-runner label that was attached to him early on came too prematurely, the obituaries about his campaign are being written too prematurely. he insists he is in it for the long haul. it's hard to look at what the path forward is to look like if jeb bush can't outperform his establishment rivals, marco rubio and ted cruz. >> reporter: when do you win a state? when does jeb bush -- >> i can't tell you that. here's the deal, you have 53 states left and territories, 53 of them. >> reporter: done two. >> done two. i mean, come on. think about it. this is -- this is a long haul process, particularly how the rules of the republican party have been set up this time. >> reporter: but jeb bush isn't changing his story and he's not changing his message. he continues to be tough in his attacks insisting that you need to have a steady hand running this country right now. he's getting the support of
another family member again, barbara bush, the governor tells me, will be back on the trail with him again tomorrow. he says she offered to come, that she reached out and said she wanted to participate in this process. it's worth noting that we also learned from him that he has now gotten rid of the glasses and gone to contacts for the first time in his life picking those up when he was at home in florida on monday. he as he's getting a better view of the future, he's hoping others will. >> that's good news about barbara bush. i'm almost conditioned when she's coming on the campaign trail, what's donald trump going to say about that. we'll find out soon. peter alexander with the bush campaign. gabe gutierrez keeping tabs on marco rubio. gabe, i want to put up a number from the pole in south carolina. among evangelical voters, this is supposed to be ted cruz's constituency. look at this, donald trump 42%,
cruz 23%. 20-point gap there. marco rubio way back at 14%. i understand though rubio trying to increase his numbers specifically with evangelicals, gabe. >> reporter: yeah, that's right, steve. you're exactly right in that donald trump having such a huge support among evangelicals, that has really shaken up the republican race but marco rubio's campaign believes he can take away some of the evangelicals from ted cruz. he's done very well against evangelicals. his ground game in south carolina has been censored around shoring up support. in the last few days we have seen marco rubio try to speak more about his faith. he has a very unique personal history in that he's a roman catholic. his family attends evangelical services. when he was. younger he also practiced mormonism. the more he shares his story and talks about his faith that he'll
be able to convince some of these evangelical voters to come into his camp. the argument that they're also making among these voters is that marco rubio, they say, is the conservative that is best positioned to win, the electability argument. they're arguing that ted cruz is too polarizing and cannot win. in the last few days the marco rubio campaign has tried to attack ted cruz hard because they feel that is where the most number of voters that they -- that they feel they can take away the most amount of voters from the ted cruz campaign into their camp. but the question is, you're right, steve, right now marco rubio is trying to battle for that second place with donald trump so far in the driver's seat the question will be can he convince enough of those evangelical voters who, by the way, who are not just one block, they're many different types of evangelical voters. can he convince enough of them to leave the ted cruz camp and to coalesce behind the establishment candidate, which
would be marco rubio. so a lot of questions right now. whether he can do that over the next few days in the rallies that we have seen him, he has opened up about his faith. he talked about being at peace a few nights ago, being at peace following his disappointing fifth place finish in new hampshire. he is hoping for a strong finish here in south carolina before heading on to nevada. steve? >> all right. gabe gutierrez with marco rubio's campaign. thanks for that. we're going to talk democrats in a few minutes with brian fallon from the hillary clinton campaign. there's a new poll out of nevada that could spell trouble for hillary clinton or at least cause real drama saturday. back with me at the liberty tap room, we have andy shane and msnbc reporter robert costas. he's a reporter for the washington post. the soda city. i found this out this morning. i'm from boston, basically, bean town. i don't like beans. i live in new york, the big apple, i don't like apples.
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kosta, he's a national reporter. he accused me of cutting out the signal by spilling soda. we're not sure if that's what happened or not. we started to talk before the break. i'm not sure if people heard this, about the evangelical vote and we put the poll up. donald trump basically two to one ahead among evangelicals. gabe was making the point in the field, there's a lot of diversity among evangelical. you know the state well. we think of evangelicals as a monolithic block, but it isn't. >> it isn't. especially this year. we tend to think of evangelicals going with a santorum or a huckabee. now they're splitting their difference between several different candidates. i think it's looking more along the lines of economic strata, that basically folks who are less educated, making less than $50,000 are going with donald trump. your traditional evangelical voter, the one we're normally thinking of in south carolina, they're going with a ted krucrua marco rubio.
bobby jindal will be speaking at a christian university tomorrow once again sending that message that marco is the evangelical candidate who can win in november. >> robert, the campaigns, like when you talk to ted cruz's campaigns, they see donald trump beating them by 20 points among evangelicals, are they baffled by that? i can't imagine that's what they were planning for at the start of the campaign. >> you see a lot of cruz allies baffled because cruz has done everything right if you look at the evangelical playbook. he's had the right friends, he says the right things on the campaign trail to stir evangelical fervor. because this is a year of the populus outsider, that santorum huckabee playbook has not been as effective. >> this is supposed to be cruz's state. you win iowa, survive new hampshire. >> it's always strange on south carolina. >> 2012, it was because of his debate performances. you don't need to hit every
single point here in terms of constituencies. you can have a bit of buzz like trump and gingrich. >> reporter: we don't have anymore debates. that's how gingrich vaulted in 2012. if we wake up sunday morning and we say, wow, how did he lose? how did this end up so much closer, where is that give? do you see any? >> it will probably be in the ground game that cruz and rubio have here. they are working very hard. cruz is knocking on doors and his pac is also knocking on doors. i hear a lot of folks say that's the only candidate i've heard from on my doorstep. so i think if it ends up being that trump's lead or trump's win is not as big as the polls are suggesting right now, i think that's where it will come from. >> reporter: is there any indication, governor nikki haley up the street talked about it sounds like she's not talking about closing the door. any indication she may wane? >> she says she has not made up her mind. she said i may not endorse. i think we're three days away. >> reporter: we know if she did
she would be against trump. >> she made it abundantly clear. again, she fired back at trump essentially saying here's a candidate who comes into the state and doesn't understand the state. she sat here and said criticizing her was very obama like. we're certainly sending a message that she wants folks not to vote for trump or she thinks trump isn't the candidate. >> some people who are friendly with her say governor haley may not endorse. she thinks trump will win and why pick someone who won't be a winner. >> reporter: if donald trump -- if these polls are right and this is how it looks and then donald trump rolls into nevada and that poll is right there, is this train unstoppable at that point? >> the one asterisk i would add is if he rolls into nevada and the south with a crowded field running against him. until this field gets winnowed down, trump's in a field of dominance. >> reporter: that's been the story. thanks for stopping by. appreciate that. hillary clinton is suddenly
looking at a much tighter race in nevada this morning. a new cnn/orc poll just outputting the race there in a dead heat, again, three days before the nevada caucuses. you see it on your screen there, hillary clinton 48%, bernie sanders, 47%. nevada is a notoriously hard state to poll so even at this date take those numbers with a bit of a grain of salt but, still, what does this mean for hillary clinton and her campaign? well, i want to bring in brian fallon. he is the press secretary for hillary clinton. thanks for taking a few minutes. as soon as those results from new hampshire came in a couple weeks -- not a couple of weeks ago, a couple of days ago almost, you guys were saying, okay, we can take a loss in new hampshire because the terrain is going to change. nevada, south carolina, they're more diverse states, they're states with a little bit more built-in appeal for hillary clinton. if you end up losing nevada on top of new hampshire, what does that say? >> well, steve, i think there's no question that the state of
affairs in nevada is tight. the cliche is it will depend on voter turnout. we have a seasoned team that knows the caucus. i think senator sanders has a little bit of wind at his back. his campaign has talked rather openly about how they're targeting caucus states not just in nevada but throughout march. i think it will be a tight contest. we'll see what happens on saturday. there's no doubt about it, as you said, we are now enbe terg a new phase of the campaign where the electorate will be more diverse starting with nevada on saturday and continuing with south carolina and we've had a pretty stable lead for the last several months and looking ahead to march where 56% of the delegates will be awarded. you see a very diverse electorate in some of those states on super tuesday so i think it will come down to who has the track record, who is speaking to the issues that really resonate in the latino and african-american communities and i think when you compare their records there's just no comparison between secretary clinton and senator sanders.
>> you use that phrase, bernie sanders out of new hampshire may be getting a spike in nevada because of that. i guess the term is momentum begets momentum. i know the polls are more favorable for you down here, but if he's now coming off of two wins heading into south carolina are you afraid there's more slippage for your campaign as a result of that? >> well, look, first of all, we're contesting nevada on saturday. hillary clinton's going to be flying out there tonight. she'll be there every day from now until saturday doing events. we have a town hall tomorrow night. i think that cnn poll that came out said there is a significant percentage of folks making up their mind. we're doing everything we can to mobilize our supporters. but the march states are very important, too. like i said, 56% of the delegates get awarded then. hillary clinton on her way to nevada will actually be stopping in illinois which is one of those march states and talking about the breaking down of
barriers that she wants to execute on as president. you know, she has in the last couple weeks really honed in on the fact that while senator sanders continues to talk about the need to enforce regulations strongly against wall street, which she shares the view that we need to do that, that that is not a solution. breaking up the banks is not a solution to the panoply of issues that we see that affect those communities that are going to be represented in these march states. so yesterday she was in holland talking about how we need to have a comprehensive agenda to deal with the systemic racism that too many african-american communities still encounter today, all the way from education issues where you see zero tolerance school discipline policies that are sending kids on a trajectory to the criminal justice system rather than to college to economic issues. she's proposed $125 billion package to help her vietlize under served communities. i think she's talking to the issues that will hold her in good stead in those states that vote at the end of this month and into march.
>> all right. well, we see the next phase in that post new hampshire democratic campaign is this saturday. it starts here and then goes to south carolina. >> go gamecocks, i like your fleece. >> there you go. i'd have the clemson on if i was in greenville. i know how to cater to my audience. hillary clinton and bernie sanders will make their appeal to voters in the msnbc telemundo town hall. turning now to another political battle that is brewing, president obama swinging back at republicans who say he should not be picking a supreme court nominee to replace the late justice antonin scalia but instead that he should wait for the next president to do so. while meeting with out east asian leaders in california on tuesday the president said at a press conference that the constitution is clear on this matter. >> historically this has not been viewed as a question.
there's no unwritten law that says that it can only be done on off years. that's not in the constitutional text. i'm amused when i hear people who claim to be strict interpreters of the constitution suddenly reading into it a whole series of provisions that are not there. >> and joining me now washington post columnist dana millbank and msnbc chief legal correspondent ari melbor. dana, your latest title is "the ugly political spectacle." the president was trying to claim the high ground there yesterday. did he succeed in doing it? >> yeah, steve, he didn't have to claim it. the republicans basically seeded it to him. literally within 12, 13 minutes of the first news breaking that justice scalia shockingly had died you had republican staffers on capitol hill lining up to
say, no way is there going to be a confirmation. so now they're sort of bickering over, well, would they even have hearings? would they even schedule a vote? you do have to go through some quite tortured logic to get to that point of saying that there's some precedent for not looking at a presidential nominee. yeah, there has been the sort of delay that these guys are talking about before. that was in the 1840s right before the civil war. so is that really what republicans are saying we are right now? >> all right. ari, that's not all the president had to say about this. i guess he had more on the subject. what can you tell us about that? >> well, basically, what president obama is arguing is that we have a precedent for this, that there have been fights over judicial confirmation but it's not responsible to simply refuse to engage in that process or leave the vacancy the whole time. i think that makes sense, steve. the broader question here is whether republicans want to engage in this process or not.
and their opening cell was politically odd. while you can understand why someone like ted cruz in a presidential primary wants to look as obstructionist as possible, that's not necessarily where someone like chairman grassley who runs the process in the judiciary committee and is up for election in iowa which is going to be a general election in a midwestern state that could go blue, why he would want to look like he's not giving this any consideration at all. so as someone who follows both the politics and the law here, i'm a little surprised that so many washington republicans immediately took the cues from a hard core primary presidential electorate. having said that, grassley is already walking back what he's saying. they're saying, look, they're going to go on like normal and try to let the republican primary fever play out outside of washington. >> all right. ari and dana, thanks for that. appreciate it. marco rubio is just starting a town hall in mount pleasant, south carolina.
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when we do that, my friends, there is nothing we cannot accomplish. >> you can't just show up at election time and say the right things and think that's enough. we can't start building relationships a few weeks before a vote. >> as the democratic race shifts to states with more diverse electorates, hillary clinton and bernie sanders are making their pitches to a key democratic constituency. african-american voters. clinton there in the clip you just saw in new york city taking a swipe at sanders. her supporters have been dismissing sanders as a johnny come lately on black issues. with just three days to go now until nevada democratic caucuses a new cnn/orc poll shows the race in the silver state a dead heat. hillary clinton 48, bernie sanders 47%. nbc's kristen welker is
following the clinton campaign in chicago where hillary is going to be holding a get out the vote event in just a few hours. following the sanders campaign nbc news embed reporter danny freeman. kristen, we begin with you in chicago. we see in that poll maybe a little bit of slippage for hillary clinton in nevada. her spokesman was just on with us pointing support in south carolina. big african-american vote in south carolina. that's something she's going to be talking about today, i understand. >> reporter: absolutely the african-american vote is going to be critical for her to winning south carolina, and she needs to win that state, particularly if she does lose in nevada or if you get a close result like we saw in iowa. so she will be holding this get out the vote event here today, steve. i'm told that she's going to be endorsed by the mother of sandra bland. that is the 28-year-old african-american woman who was found hanged in her jail cell in texas. her death prompted protests by those who said that it was a sign of misconduct by authorities. now i'm also told that secretary clinton in her remarks today will echo some of the themes
that we heard yesterday in that address that she delivered on race in harlem when she proposed $2 billion for public education. she also vowed to take on the criminal justice system and issues relating to voting rights and she took a large swipe at senator sanders again trying to paint him as a single issue candidate. take a listen to what she had to say. >> it's not enough for your economic plan to be break up the banks. you also need a serious plan to create jobs, especially in places where unemployment remains stubbornly high. >> reporter: senator sanders has consistently insisted he's not a single issue candidate. last night in a rally that drew close to 5,000 people he again vowed to take on the misconduct by authorities and to reform the criminal justice system, but it was one of his surrogates who created a controversy, killer mike, a rapper who said this, a
uterus doesn't qualify you to be president. those comments making a lot of waves today. we have reached out to the sanders campaign for reaction. so far we haven't gotten it. steve, all of this under scores the confidence of the african-american vote as we head into states like nevada and south carolina. steve. >> kristen welker in chicago chicago. now we go to atlanta where it's probably a little bit warmer than it is in chicago and danny freeman who has been covering the sanders campaign. danny, bernie sanders sort of playing from behind when it comes to win over the black vote. running out of time a little bit, south carolina a little bit more than a week away. a bunch of other states behind it. what can you tell us about what he's doing. >> reporter: sure. thank you, steve. i'll say we wish it was getting as warm as it is supposed to be in atlanta. it's a bit chilly. senator sanders is stepping up his efforts to connect with african-american voters. yesterday senator sanders began
in south carolina, columbia, speaking at a prayer breakfast. last night he was at moorehouse college. martin luther king's alma mater. the thing that stands out, kristen welker touched on it briefly, the surrogates. killer mike did rally and rile up that enthusiastic audience despite those particular comments, but the other three endorsers and speakers who introduced senator sanders were three elected officials who had all supported clinton in the past and now in the past few months support senator sanders. so while he's definitely stepping up his pitch for african-american and black voters in particular, he's also looking at african-american and black voters who might be leaning clinton as well and try to persuade them. senator sanders had an opportunity to respond to some of the activities supported by bill clinton on msnbc's with all due respect.
>> i think it's unfortunate. i think some of the things that president clinton has been saying are unfortunate. i do understand, obviously, he's trying to do his best to get his wife to win the nomination and become president. i understand that. my wife is doing her best to try to get me to become president, but we should not be making silly remarks. >> reporter: now one thing to look forward to, steve, in the coming days as south carolina approaches and he keeps continuing this pitch to african-american and black voters, is more references to martin luther king himself. last night killer mike made the case that senator sanders lines up all of his ideas with a lot of the ideas of dr. martin luther king jr. and i think that they're hoping that that will be one thing that can push his appeal over the edge for that key demographic. steve? >> all right. kristen welker, danny freeman, thank you for that. and, again, another reminder that hillary clinton and bernie sanders will make their pitch to voters in nevada during the
msnbc telemundo town hall tomorrow night, 9:00 p.m. eastern right here on msnbc. coming up at the top of the hour, donald trump holds a town hall in bluffton, south carolina. will john kasich's second place showing help him in south carolina. he's splitting his time here and in michigan which doesn't vote until march 8th. more of a long range strategy. we'll talk about that strategy next. not quite. sometimes those seats are out of reach, costing an outrageous number of miles. it's time to switch... to the capital one venture card. with venture, you'll earn unlimited double miles on every purchase, every day. and when you're ready to travel, just book the flight you want, on any airline and use your miles to cover the cost. now that's more like it. what's in your wallet?
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trump, jeb bush, and ben carson, all of them in action this morning. meanwhile, john kasich is playing the long game in this race. he's hoping the momentum from that second place finish he had up there in new hampshire can carry him for a few more weeks, even if he can't repeat that kind of success this weekend in south carolina. >> we'll see what happens. the election will be on saturday and we're going to do as well as we can here. we're going to be able to, you know, compete here and move on. this is not going to end here in south carolina. >> so instead of playing for a win here, kasich is targeting michigan, a state that borders his native ohio. boy, there's a fierce border war between those two. michigan/ohio state football game every year. holding four events in michigan this week. the problem for kasich is that michigan doesn't hold that primary for nearly three weeks. 17 states voting between now and then. joining me now is south carolina republican strategist andrew boucher. he is signed on to advise the kasich campaign.
andrew, thank you for taking a few minutes out. i'll flash the newest numbers up here in south carolina. you can see donald trump continuing to lead. your guy, john kasich, pretty far back, 4% in the new cnn poll out in the last 24 hours. he says he wants to do as well as he can here in south carolina. realistically what does that mean? >> well, we're optimistic about south carolina. one of the things that -- about that most recent poll is that most of the questions were asked last week and two weeks ago john kasich was at 1% in south carolina and in the past week and a half he has spiked up to 10, 12, 14% in this state. we're optimistic about the governor doing well here and beyond. >> i mean, it comes at a question here at a certain point is where do you put a win on the board? i mean, donald trump won new hampshire, he's leading here. ted cruz won iowa. john kasich has got to put a win on the board here somewhere. where is it? does it have to be all the way to michigan? >> it might be. we're looking optimistically at
a bunch of different states between now and michigan. i'd just like to remind folks that, you know, four years ago this process went three months after the iowa caucuses. we're less than three weeks after the iowa caucuses. we've got a long way to go. governor kasich is building an infrastructure for the long haul. the more people hear about his message of cutting taxes, creating jobs and balancing budgets, the more they like it. and the more they hear his message talking positively about his own record and not trying to drag down everyone else in the race with his in fighting the more they appreciate that tone and that vision for the future. >> what about this idea though, we keep hearing this, i hear it from supporters of marco rubio, i hear it from supporters of ted cruz and other candidates for that matter, too. the best thing that donald trump has going for him in this race is that the opposition is so splitered. he has so many opponents drawing 10, 15% in the polls.
if all of them could get behind one candidate, donald trump is stopped. as long as they're spread out and divided donald trump is going to win this thing. is that the risk here with you, with rubio, with all of these other campaigns? >> sure, but we're very early in this process. we saw some winnowing down of the field after iowa. we saw some more winnowing down of the field after new hampshire. i would imagine after south carolina and nevada we'll see a little bit more and then we'll go into sutper tuesday on march 1st, march 8th and then i think we'll start to see the race shake out. we just have a long way to go. it's who can put together a national campaign and really compete in multiple states simultaneously. john kasich is in a position to do just that. >> all right. i watched that ohio state/michigan football game every year. there's certain irony on the buckeye state governor relying on michigan to get his campaign
going. you're not going to want to miss chris matthews one on one with governor john kasich tonight on "hardball" 7:00 eastern time on msnbc. up next, we'll hear directly from south carolina voters about what they want from the candidates before they cast their ballots now three days away on the republican side. john roberts why the young black vote is so critical here in the palmetto state. was engineered... ...to help sense danger before you do. because when you live to innovate, you innovate to live. the all-new audi q7. a higher form of intelligence has arrived. companies must adapt.changing environment, but one thing should remain constant -
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trump. thomas is here with me at the liberty tap room. >> soda city, is that why they call it cola. >> cola, soda. >> we are living up to it as th. >> that's not bad. not bad. as you get on campus and start to talk to the young folks out there and who they're voting for, especially in the african-american voting block, while donald trump may not have earned their vote just yet, he definitely has their attention. >> when it comes to your impressions of donald trump, do you think he's added value to our political process or he's added entertainment? >> entertainment. >> entertainment? everybody feels entertainment? >> you don't think he's helped to press any of the other candidates to come out on certain positions on expose themselves or even help a john kasich be a better candidate? >> one of the things i like about donald trump is others would agree with me, but his
straightforwardness and the fact that he tells what he thinks. >> so brian right there, steve, is a young man who is a republican. he likes john kasich. his first pick was rand paul. so he was kind of the odd man out of this group, as the rest of them all identify as democratic. we had one independent, but the majority of these folks are first-time voters. they do like that donald trump is a disrupter factor to all of this. however, they most feel that he would be best suited to go up against buernie or hillary because they feel that bernie or hillary would beat him. >> most electable sort of opponent. more importantly, did you ask them about soda? >> i did not get to them on soda, but i did show up to them about three or four diet mountain dews in. so i was pretty amped up when i got on campus. but i'm not young enough to compete with these kids. they were smart, bright. we'll have more. >> more later on today. >> later today, more of that and also donald trump, who is going to be joining my show.
i encourage everyone to tune in for that. we'll have tan opportunity to talk to him about the latest numbers, the national polling from quinnipiac shows him with this domineering lead, the next contenders in the teens. >> the republican front-runner joining thomas roberts, 11:00 a.m. and also, joe and mika will be sitting down with donald trump for an exclusive town hall event in charleston tonight, live, 8:00 p.m. eastern. if there's a question you would like joe and mika to ask trump, you can tweet @morningjoe, using the #trumpsctownhall. at&t helps keep everyone connected. right now at at&t, buy one get one free on our most popular smartphones. no matter how you hang out, share every minute of it. buy one get one free on our most popular smartphones. and right now, get up to $650 in credits per line to help you switch to at&t.
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after the debate, polls looking very much the same. trump dropping just two points, but not much more than that. will the race change as all before saturday? is this state still trump's to win. let's handicap the race with scott, the former executive director of the south carolina republican party, and we should say, he is neutral in saturday's race. >> absolutely. >> good place to be. you can be our honest analyst in all this. let me ask you this. we always talk about the contests early on, iowa, new hampshire, south carolina, winnowing infield. we didn't see that much winnowing out of iowa and new hampshire. will we see more? >> you may not see a lot here. you look at carson and kasich polling fifth and sixth. at some point, you have to say, how much can we go on? >> people saying look to michigan, march 8th. >> absolutely. they could can be a herd going into the convention. maybe there's a brokered convention.
the trump folks and anti-trump folks. maybe the anti-trump folks amass their delegates and win. right now, it's a battle of expectations. in the last seven days this has come down to in the south carolina primary, jeb bush, can he finish some place other than fourth? he's battling for third place. the right to rise pac, his super pac, is mailing like crazy. they're canvassing doors. radio, new radio ads hitting the airwaves with donald trump swearing, bleeping out the expletives. so i think jeb bush has got to finish, got to beat cruz or got to beat rubio. he's got plenty of money to go on with still finishing fourth. >> i heard this from somebody in new hampshire, a republican up there. it was a strategist, so he looked at the return address on the mailers. he said, he got 32 mailers from right to rise, from the jeb bush super pac. 32. that's what you're seeing here, too? >> it's amazing. i got one the other day that was a three dimensional mail piece.
i have never seen that before in my life. it's very expensive. and they're attacking rubio. they have to surpass one of these guys to show some momentum. if they're in fourth place, it's very stagnant. nothing is going to change. if kasich or carson happens to beat bush, that's huge. that's huge. >> we saw four years ago at this year, newt gingrich was surging down here. he went from about 15% to 40%. are you seeing, are you picking up on any movement in this race heading into saturday? >> what you see in the polls is pretty accurate. trump, we did polling way back, maybe two weeks ago. in the most conservative state senate district in south carolina, trump was winning. we did polls on the first congressional district. trump winning big. we saw bush in second place. >> that's the most moderate part of the state. >> that's charleston, beaufort. >> it's interesting. trump is going to win. and the question is, where is jeb? what happens with him? nobody seems to know.
there's a surge in bush. you mentioned gingrich. he did not have a ground game in south carolina. gingrich won by virtue of his two debate performances. absolutely. our primary goes back to 1980 in south carolina. and until gingrich, no one has ever lost and become the nominee. we have a good tradition. do we see a winnowing of the field? maybe, maybe not. >> bush may be the most likely to be the question. scott, thanks for that. that wraps up this hour from msnbc, from columbia, south carolina. soda city. might have mentioned that once or twice. i'm steve kornacki. after the break, donald trump kicks off a town hall in bluffton, a coastal town near hilton head, and craig melvin is next live from charleston. ♪ hey diddle diddle, the cat and the fiddle, the cow jumped over the moon... then quickly fell back to earth landing on the roof of a dutch colonial. luckily geico recently helped the residents with homeowners insurance.
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and a good wednesday morning to you. i'm craig melvin live at city market in historic downtown charleston, south carolina. this is msnbc, the place for politics. a live look here at that market. this was built in the late 1700s. they left the land to build this series of sheds that extends all the way down to the waterfront many, many decades ago, this is where folks came to sell vegetables and meats, rent a dollar or two dollars depending on the size of the shed. over the last few decades, of course, it has become quite the home to artisans and folks who sell all sorts of things from baskets to clothes. i remember vividly coming down here from columbia when i was born on vacation, just about every summer, we would come to charleston, we would run through the markets. i would beg my parents to buy me something.
now, it's pretty much all tourists. you don't find a lot of locals hanging out at the market. we're going to be lahanging out all day on msnbc, here in charleston and all over south carolina. a few days away from the big gop primary. next weekend, the democratic primary here in south carolina. let's go right now to bluffton. bluffton, south carolina, about two and a half hours south of here. highway 17 south. we're awaiting the man all the polls say will run away with the republican primary this saturday. donald trump, of course, scheduled to start a town hall in bluffton any moment now. this is the first of four trump events in south carolina today. including our exclusive town hall with the front-runner. you can catch that town hall 8:00 eastern tonight right on msnbc. meanwhile, the other republican candidates are also fanning out across the state. more than a dozen events are scheduled today alone. there's a look at where those events are going to be happening. with just three days to go, we
are getting a clearer picture of what's going through the minds of voters. a new poll of likely republican primary voters here shows trump well out in front right now. 38%, according to this new cnn poll. his closest challenger, ted cruz, at 22%. 16 points behind. marco rubio there in third, jeb bush barely in double tijts at 10. jeb bush looking to become the first bush in that family's storied political history to not win this state's primary. he's down a distance fourth there. but the voters have not cast ballots yet, of course. nearly half of them, according to that same poll, have not totally made up their minds just yet. we continue to monitor that trump event there in bluffton. also this hour, we're watching for jeb bush. we're also watching for ben carson, who is in columbia. let's start our coverage with nbc's gabe gutierrez, peter alexander, and political correspondent steve kornacki. steve, let me start with you
because if these polls are correct, donald trump is on the verge of cruising to his biggest victory yet, perhaps. what would that mean for this republican primary going forward? >> yeah, you know, it's really interesting, craig. i have been temped to say for a while, if this was anybody but donald trump who were putting up the kind of numbers we're seeing here off a big win in new hampshire, off a very near miss in iowa, i think we would be a lot more bullish about where this is all heading in terms of that candidate's prospects and saying this is a candidate on the way to the nomination. donald trump, if these numbers hold up, donald trump is in an commanding position in the race. if he posts a double-digit victory here in south carolina, we also have new numbers this morning out of nevada. nevada will vote a couple days after south carolina on the republican side. there are numbers there that have donald trump up better than 2 to 1. if you're the trump campaign and looking at a big win in new
hamper, a big win in south carolina, you follow it up with a big win in nevada, it does start to raise the question of does this guy have the kind of momentum that could propel him all the way to the nomination with ease? what you'll hear from the other campaigns is, look, what we need is a one-on-one matchup with donald trump. you'll hear that from the bush people, you'll hear that from the rubio people, from the kasich people. they have this scenario in their mind if they can winnow this thing down to trump versus their candidate, the rest of the party will rally around their candidate to try to stop donald trump. of course, the biggest problem here, craig, is how do they get to the point, if you're any one of those candidates, how do you get to the point where it's a one-on-one? if these numbers hold up, it might be bad news, bad enough news for jeb bush, maybe, to get out of the race after all the money and the effort he's put in here. if you're rubio, would you get out if these were the final results, if you're kasich and looking ahead to michigan which doesn't vote until march 8th, ohio, which doesn't vote until
the 15th, would you get out? if you're cruz, would you get out? the muddled field that maybe has been benefitting donald trump doesn't look like it's going to be too unmuddle ed by the resul on saturday. that might be the biggest victory he gets out of here, craig. >> peter, let's talk about the aforementioned jeb bush. we all know the bush history in this state. as you know, there has not been a winning republican ticket without a bush at the top or bottom for republicans since 1980, i believe. is jeb bush conceding at all that he is going to break the family record and not win here on saturday? and if not, what makes him think that he's going to pull off what would be an enormous upset at this point? >> yeah, a form of an upset, they don't think they're going to win the state. they recognize the challenges right now is the third-place finish here. they have to come ahead of what are often referred to as the other establishment candidates.
it's worth noting we're speaking to many republicans arriving here to hear jeb bush saying we're not establishment republicans. we're traditional, pragmatic republicans. we want a republican who believes what we believe and we believe can get the job done. obviously, jeb bush faces a real uphill climb in this state and across the country. no matter what he says, he's going to continue. we announced they will be hosting a big event in nevada, a rally outside of las vegas ahead of that state's caucuses on sunday. he says south carolina is not his last stand. i was on his bus with him traveling for about a half hour between stops yesterday. and he said that all the write-ups about the obituary, they're premature, much the same way the conversation about him being a presumptive front-runner was overploen as well. here's more of the conversation with the former florida governor. >> write the headline, saturday night. >> the one i want? >> yeah. >> bush wins. >> can you win here?
>> that's the one i want. >> fine. what will the headline be on saturday night? >> i'm not into the punditry. i wake up each day committed to doing the best i can. >> jeb bush saying he's not going to play those games, none of the punditry. he's going to focus on his message. he's not changing anything. the only noticeable change in recent days is he's gotten rid of the glasses and gone to contacts for the first time in his life. he's hoping americas will take a closer look at donald trump going forward. another person to help sort of create that contrast and try to reconnect with the people of south carolina is his mom, barbara bush. she's going to be back on the trail in south carolina with him tomorrow. >> peter, really quickly, i meant to ask you this yesterday, what's behind the switch? why did he go to contact lenses? >> he said i am who i am. i'm not going to change for anybody else.
he's been trying to make an appointment for months. the way he puts it, i was in miami on monday morning. i had time to pick them up, so he went and got contacts. >> all right. peter alexander for us in beaufort, where that bush town hall is expected to start in roughly 20 minutes. gabe gutierrez still on the trail as well. gabe joining us now from -- gabe, where are you, brother? what part of south carolina are you in? >> aiken, south carolina. >> aiken. >> getting ready for a marco rubio event set to start in a few hours. here's the thing. the question right now is how can marco rubio get the republican party to coalesce around him. that's what steve was talking about earlier. the bush campaign wants that to happen as well. their argument is look, in a head to head matchup with donald trump once these candidates drop out, in a head-to-head matchup, they believe they can take on donald trump. but, as we have been seeing from the polls, stopping the trump train will be extremely
difficult. marco rubio is trying to make the case he the conservative in the party that can win. he's trying to take away some of the evangelical voters from ted cruz, on the attack against ted cruz over the last few days. and this morning at his event in mt. pleasant, he took a shot at donald trump. let's take a listen. >> we have to insure that our party, the republican party, nominates a conservative who can win. a conservative who can win. because in the past, they have told us nominate so-and-so because they're not that conservative, but because they're not that conservative, they give us a better chance to win. we can't afford to do that anymore. that's not what we're going to do this time. we need a conservative that win. i'm as conservative as anyone running in the race, and i have a 15-year record of turning conservatism into action that proves it. i didn't become a conservative two and a half years ago. okay, i have a record. not talking about anybody. just saying, two and a half years ago. >> two and a half years ago. that's something he's been saying in the last couple days on the stump, getting quite a
bit of laughs for that. obviously, a swipe at donald trump. but the knock on marco rubio is he does not have the experience, and ted cruz is really hitting him hard on immigration, saying he's changed his position on that. marco rubio trying to make the case on national security, he does have the most experience. the question right now, will voters here in south carolina rally behind him? perhaps if he can get out of here with a second or third-place finish and get past that disastrous finish in new hampshire, the fifth place disappointing finish, his campaign, though, feels they have turned the page since new hampshire. they're looking for a strong finish here before moving on to nevada, a state he has tied in, that he lived in as a child. we'll have to see how this shapes up this weekend. craig. >> gabe gutierrez there in aiken, south carolina. horse country here in the palmetto state. we'll check in with you in a bit. kerry sanders is standing by in sumpter. spent the morning there. you have been talking to voters around south carolina.
we saw you at that trump rally yesterday, spending some time with voters there. what are folks in sumpter saying about the race so far, sir? >> well, good morning. you know, i'm in cut rate soda fountain. this is the oldest continuous running restaurant in the state, where today they're serving, as they have been all week, the flapjackwise a healthy serving of politics. we can talk to some of the voters here who are being wooed by so many people in the state. we have todd and jack. todd, first of all, if i can ask you, have you decided who you're going to vote for, and how do you feel about the back and forth over whether donald trump is a conservative or not? >> i narrowed it down to two. we're going to see donald trump tonight add the civic center. i think there's good and bad in all of them. conservative i use up and down in the top three, i think. and i think we have a couple more days to decide. >> that's interesting because, you know, we see these candidates going door to door, facility to facility, jack.
they're still trying to get people to make their minds up. have you made your mind up? >> not yet. i have to listen to the candidates again. as i have in the past. and i'll make my mind up before i vote. >> now, one thing that you have in this state that is not in all states is whether you're a republican or a democrat, you can -- it's an open primary. you can choose to vote in one or the other. have you decided where you're going to vote, cast your vote? >> that i will not divulge. >> i respect that. you can choose how you want. as you know, president obama said of donald trump, that he believes that he will not become president. and he said he thought that the voters were going to be a little bit smarter than that. kind of paraphrasing him. what do you think of president obama's comments directly about donald trump? >> well, those are his comments. of course, and you know, they're not mine. and i think donald trump has a
chance, as do most of the others. so that's obama's comment. >> what did you feel about that? >> i think we definitely have our own right to have our own opinion. that's obviously his. i'm glad he was in america where he can voice it. >> this is a polite way of saying you don't agree? >> you never know. this is america. wild things have happened before. the wild card does win sometimes. >> nigh last question to both of you, what is it like to be so valued, have so many people try to get a piece of attention to say vote for me. >> it's great. i mean, you know. you don't often be in that area, at least i don't. i feel pretty good about it. >> i think we live in some great interesting times where we're well informed. people like yourself, and it makes the decision a little bit easier and sometimes it makes it tougher with so much information out there. >> boat, thank you very much for joining us. there is a lot of information out there, and i will agree with you. between the speed of the
twitterverse where there's so many tweets coming out and so much information on youtube, and of course, the 24-hour coverage we're providing as are others. as you know, these are the ones that the candidates are after, just trying to get one person, one vote, so hopefully they think their candidacy can move on to the next set of states. >> kerry, thank you for that. i will not divulge. i respect that. i like that. thank you, sir. we'll come back to you in a bit as well. >> you can hear much, much more from republican front-runner donald trump tonight in that exclusive msnbc town hall, joe scarborough and mika brzezinski, tonight, 8:00 eastern on msnbc. our own chris jansing practically a charl stonian, she's been to lots of events, campaign appearances all over the palmetto state. always good to see you. >> great to see you in your home state, where i can say you are beloved. >> well, i'm related to a lot of folks around south carolina. >> blood relatives, got to count
on them. >> what about the weather, too? 65 degrees. >> fantastic. >> let's talk about nikki haley, the governor of south carolina, on the short list, obviously, to perhaps become a vp nominee as well. there had been some thinking that she might endorse before saturday's primary. what are you hearing? what do you think? >> if she endorses, craig, it would be epic. i'm not a big believer in endorsements and moving the needle, but in south carolina, it could make a difference in this way, look. you see the polls. donald trump is not going to lose this. she said no way she's endorsing him. she said she was embarrassed by his comments on george w. bush. to what steve was saying at the beginning of this hour, which is the winnowing process that every single campaign believes would help them, help the possibility, as small as it seems to be getting, that someone could be the nominee besides donald trump. her endorsement could help winnow the field, could help give someone a strong
second-place finish, and that could be so, so kaungs conventional, having said that, with the clock ticking, it's looking less and less like she might do that. >> you have to wonder what she would gain by doing that? >> here's what she could lose. first, this has been a rough year for your state. you had the walter scott shooting, the flooding, and the shooting at charleston, at the ame church. she is snot going to necessarily want to throw herself in the middle of a divisive political campaign. and if she does believe, and we think she does, that someone will be the nominee besides trump, would you go with a jeb bush because his brother came to visit you, when maybe marco rubio will be the nominee or john kasich will be the nominee? what do you gain if you want to potentially be considered seriously for vice president? >> especially since she has spent the better part of the last year or so really doing a masterful job at times of being above it all. being above the fray. >> we saw that up close after the charleston shooting.
>> the confederate battle flag coming down. that's something they're going to talk about in history classrooms all over the state for generations to come. good to see you. >> great to be here. >> again, donald trump just starting that town hall with sun city republicans in bluffton, south carolina. again, highway 17, about two hours south of where we are right now. this is a coastal town. near hilton head. lots of retirees. lots of snow bunnies in this part of the state. again, donald trump talking right now. let's listen in for a bit. >> great, great plan. but cruz will say it's the most incredible thing, cruz will say, donald trump loves obamacare. every single speech since it came out, i said we're going to get rid of it. they really lie. and the reason i can say that nicely is that rubio called him a liar also. so once another guy called him a liar, it's easier for me to call him a liar. really, cruz does lie. i have never seen anything quite like it. >> okay, this is from our sun
city veterans club. you said you will rebuild the military. >> right. >> that sounds a lot like ronald reagan's belief in a strong military is a strong offense, is a strong defense as well. two questions. how will you rebuild the military? and what will you do about isis? >> number one, we're going to knock the hell out of isis. we're going to get rid of isis. we have to. just so you understand, i didn't want, and it was very important to me, i didn't want to go into iraq, and you know, a long time ago, 2003, 2004, even before that, i was against the war because you're going to destabilize the middle east. you're going to destabilize the middle east, but they got in. then obama got us out the wrong way. we have to get rid of isis. paeb don't goat into iraq originally. we made a mistake. the country made a big mistake and started all of this horrible thing you see taking place, including isis. now you have isis and they're chopping off people's heads,
chopping off christian's heads, anybody's head, and we have to knock them out. we're not going to play games. we're going to make our military strong and powerful again. and believe me, it's the cheapest thing we can do because nobody is going to mess around with us. we have no choice. it's the cheapest thing we can do. our military has been decimated. it's been absolutely decimated. and it's, you know, it's not in good shape, believe me. in fact, general ordeiono, he said it's the least prepared it's been in a long time. we're going to make the military absolutely strong and powerful again. we don't want to use it. but we have to have it. it's actually like a preventative. it's the cheapest thing we can do. so that's totally important. and we've got to take care of our vets. we're going to take care of our vets. our vets are being treated terribly. we're going to take care of our vets. >> thank you, mr. trump. i'm a developer, and i know what can we done, but we explained your plans to build a wall on
the mexican border and stopping illegal immigration. a big question from a lot of folks here. >> we're going to build a wall. none of these politicians are going to build a wall because they don't know where to begin. they come to me, say you're really not going to build a wall? of course. i know how to build. what i do best is build. wouldn't it be nice to have a president who knew how to rebuild and new how to negotiate. i'm building a hotel that i got from the government. can you imagine the obama administration, i got it from the old post office on pennsylvania avenue between the white house and the capitol building. right smack in the middle. best location, right on pennsylvania avenue. it's under budget by a lot. and it's two years ahead of schedule. and somebody in government said we have never heard of that before. it's under budget, ahead of schedule. two years ahead of schedule. we're going to open it in september. it was supposed to open in a couple years in september. but that's nice because we know how to do that. having somebody that has that ability, i have always had the ability, under budget, ahead of
schedule. having that ability when we have to rebuild our infrastructure because our country is crumbling, our airports, roadways, highways, bridges. tunnels, hospitals. everything we have, it comes in when you look at the way they build, it comes in double, triple, quadruple. let me tell you, people are making a lot of money off our country. they're not going to make so much anymore. here's the other thing. i'm self-funding my campaign, so i'm not controlled by the special interests, the pharmaceutical companies and the all of the different interests, whether it's the electrical companies, the utilities. they have hundreds of them. they control the politicians because they contribute. i don't take the money. so i'm self-funding. i don't know if i get credit for that, to be honest with you. i'm not sure, but i'm self-funding. costing a lot of money. costs a lot of money, but the nice thing is they can't come to me and say, well, we gave you money, ford or general motors or somebody. we gave you a lot of money. we need this, we need that. i'm going to do what's right for
you folks. okay. >> just full disclosure, my wife sent you a check for $25. >> okay. >> look, one of the questions i think everybody in here wants to know is why is the media in general afraid of a trump presidency? >> oh, i get treated so badly. i was watching fox this morning. they treat me so badly. fox treats me like worse than anybody. i get treated very badly by the media. i don't really understand why. they have pundits on that are just one after another, negative, negative, negative. it started where actually they all thought i wasn't going to run. and they said, he'll never run. he'll never run. then they look bad, and they don't stop. some have become much better. i think fox in particular treats me so badly it's incredible. but it doesn't matter, i guess. look, we're leading in the polls by a lot. we won new hampshire in a landslide. it was a landslide victory. every single group. we won highly educated, not
educated. we won women, we won men. we won young, we won old. we won virtually every group, i think, every group. and it was an amazing victory. and something really special. but you know, i'm finding out all i can do is tell the truth. i tell the truth about iraq. i say the war was a disaster. we spent $2 trillion. lost thousands of lives, thousands of lives. we have wounded warriors all over the place. these guys have more courage than all of us put together. i have to tell you. all of us. and you know, i say, we should have never been there. and you know, if bush is insulted, i don't care if he's insulted. it was a horrible mistake. we should have never been there. somebody says, oh, that's not good to criticize? i say criticize? it's one of the worst decisions in the history of the country. we have totally destabilized the middle east. i predicted that was going to happen. because when you knock down the one power, the other power just took it over. now iran is taking over iraq.
just as sure as you're sitting there. we don't even have anything to do with iraq anymore. we're gone. but think of it. we spent $2 trillion. could have rebuilt our country. we could have done so much with that money. and instead, we're worse in the middle east than we were 15 years ago. right now, it's a disaster. saddam hussein was a bad guy, but you know what he was good at? killing terrorists. we didn't have -- he was killing terrorists. now, iraq is harvard for terrorists. if you want to be a terrorist, you go to iraq. it's harvard. and what did we do? you know, we spent all this money, lost all these lives, have all these wounded warriors. what did we get? iran is taking over. not only did they get the $150 billion in the stupid deal we made, one of the dumbest deals ever, but now we're taking over iraq, they have been fighting for years to try to take each other other. we decap tate the one country. they're taking over, and people
don't realize iraq has the second largest oil reserves in the world. so we took -- we just hand it to them on a silver platter. how could we have been so stupid? very sad. i mean, honestly, to me, it's a sad subject to talk about. >> on the way in, in the back, i saw a gentleman with a bernie t-shirt on. i said, what are you doing here at a trump rally? he said, well, the tickets were free. what is your answer to hillary and bernie when they're grabbing so many of the young people with freebies. >> who is the bernie guy? >> i think the rest of these folks ran him out. >> can guess he got thrown out, i guess. i don't know. i don't see him now. no, look. you know, this is something -- and the main thing is you have to go and vote, but if you don't vote for me, don't go and vote. it's a nice thing to say. you have to vote. do you hear the politicians,
doesn't matter who you're voting for? i don't feel that way. vote for me. but it is so important, on saturday, and it is true. we had such an unbelievable turnout. this was so great. and did i promise you i would come back and take care of the people? people forget that. we have so many people who wanted to come. we said you can't come. this was for the group of people where they got stuck outside and there were a lot more than this, but they invited 500, exactly 500 people. and i just felt i had an obligation to do it. i was thinking about cancelling this morning because i had something else, and i said, there's no way i have the courage to do that. right? would i have been in trouble? would i have been in trouble? and you know, i know the tremendous support i have here, and i really appreciate it. del webb, i knew del webb many years ago, and he was an amazing guy. he did a great job. are you all happy with del webb? i think so, right? del webb was a great developer, actually. a great dweveloper, and one of the few really great developers.
so congratulations. >> mr. trump, there's not a person in this room that doesn't fear for the future of their children and grandchildren. how are we going to make america great for the grandchildren? >> well, look. we have to have strong borders. we have to strengthen our economy. we have to get rid of our debt, balance our budget. all of the things that i talk about all the time. we have to have that strong military because we can't have any chances. you know, we're being looked at by so many different people. and weaponry today is unbelievably powerful. we have to be extremely careful. we have to be really diligent. i called for bans of people coming into the country because we don't know what the hell is going on. there's bad stuff happening. there is bad, bad, bad stuff happening up here. when you have people flying planes into the world trade center, people shooting people that gave them parties for their wedding. these two radicalized people. they were giving parties from the people they killed for their children or their child, and a wedding party.
they walk in and shoot 14 people and kill them. you look at what happened in paris where you have the strongest gun laws in the world, practically. you can't have a gun, unless you're a bad guy, they walk in and kill everybody. by the way, second amendment, if some of the other people on the other side had guns, it would have been a whole different story, a much different story. so you quo, it's very simple. it's called make america great again. we want to make america great again. that's my whole theme. we're run by people who don't know what they're doing. we're run by incompetent people or something, there's something wrong with them, because some of the deals. who would make a deal as stupid as that? where we're giving them $150 billion, we get nothing and get our hostages back as part of the deal? we paid $150 billion for some hostages that frankly should have come out years ago, and if you had the right negotiators they would have. you would have gone in and said, we want our hostages back. they would have said no, and you triple up the sanctions and
leave the room. 24 hours later, you get your hostages back. it's that simple. you don't give them the $150 billion. you tell them we don't have it. we owe $19 trillion, we don't have it. sorry, folks. seriously. i mean, we have people, they didn't read "the art of the deal." they don't have a clue. take sergeant bergdahl. he's a traitor. we get bergdahl. six people died looking for him. we get bergdahl. they get five of the greatest killers that they wanted and coveted for nine years. we get one. they get five. he's a traitor, they're the best they have. and they're now out on the fields or will soon be killing people again. i don't get it. i don't get it. i say, where do these people come from? where do they come from? we knew he was a traitor, when we made the deal, because they had a general and colonel interview all the people that knew him. you know, from his platoon. and we knew he was a traitor.
so why would we make a deal? let them keep him. i would have said keep him. you can have him. i would give him back. i would actually give him back. i would fly over, drop him right on top. bing. >> that's the way he feels. >> you know, think of it. why would we do that? who would make a deal like that? where is the thinking? who would make a deal? and that relates even to business, because it's the same mindset like the iran deal, the trade deals we have with china, we lose $500 billion. we lose $500 billion a year. now, this is a rich community, so that doesn't mean anything, that kind of money. but you know, i mean, think of it. think how the country would be if we didn't. i have the best business people in the world. we have political hacks negotiating our deals. right? political hacks. i have the best business people in the world. they're going to negotiate our deals from now on.
we're going to make a fortune, we're going to do great. we're not going to lose like that. we lose with japan, with mexico. kerry is moving to mexico. nabisco is moving to mexico. ford is doubling up, going to move more to mexico. they're going to spend billions and billions of dollars in moex co. why aren't they spending it here? i know how to get it where they're not moving to mexico anymore. believe me. it's going to end. mexico is the new china. be careful. >> mr. trump, you are without a deutlooking at part of america's greatest generation. they have worked hard to enjoy the american dream. one component of that dream is a social security system. what would the social security system, how would it be sound under a trump presidency? >> i love the question, because every single other candidate is going to cut the hell out of your social security. remember the wheelchair being pushed over the cliff when you had ryan chosen as your vice
president? that was the end of that campaign, by the way, when they chose ryan. i like him. he's a nice person, but that was the end of the campaign. i said, you have to be kidding. because he represented cutting entitlements, et cetera. the only one who is not going to cut is me. we're going to make the country rich, bring our jobs back, cut costs out of the budget, waste, disgusting waste. we're going to take care of our veterans and all that, but there's tremendous fat. we can take care of people. we can run a better country with less money. and actually, it would be better. like when i build a building, i build a better builder for less money. the guy across the street spends more money, and mine has a better architect and a better design. we can do it better. there's so much fat. we're going to take the fraud, the waste, and the abuse out of social security. for instance, they have, i read, thousands of people over 106 years old. now, you know, hopefully we can all make it up to that age, but
we know there's not going to be thousands of them, okay. that means there's fraud. somebody is collecting thousands. that's just one little example of what's going on. we're going to save social. we're not going to cut the age. we're going to give you the full benefits. you have been paying into it your whole life, and every other candidate up here wants to cut your social security. they're going to cut it. they're going to cut it, and i'm not going to cut it. i'm going to bring money in and we're going to save it. believe me, that's a big thing. nobody else is going to be able to do it. >> donald trump there in bluffton, south carolina, talking about his plan to protect entitlements, specifically social security. no doubt a popular topic with that audience there. bluffton, just a stone's throw from hilton head. lots of snow birds there in that community. also heard him spend some time talking about the military. you also have lots of military folks in that community, retired military folks in that
community. donald trump there, one of four campaign appearances here in south carolina today. we're going to hear a lot more from donald trump in the next hour, with thomas roberts, and tonight, right here on msnbc, joe and mika will sit down with trump for that exclusi ive town hall event right here in charleston. 8:00 eastern. if there's a question that you would like joe and mika to ask donald trump, you can twee tweet @morningjoe, using t the #trumpsctownhall. there's the hashtag agai again, #trumpsvtownhall. much more ahead from south carolina. this is msnbc. we'll be right back. jeb bush also holding a town hall in beaufort. we'll bring that to you live, and we'll also take a look at the democratic race as well. hillary clinton and bernie sanders trying to win over black voters who will make up almost 70% of the electorate on primary day here in the palmetto state next weekend. live in charleston, at city market, stay with us.
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jeb bush barely polling in the double digits here in south carolina right now. holding a town hall in beaufort, south carolina. let's listen in. >> people are saying all sorts of things, because of the death of their loved one in uniform in the line of duty, they had their lives turned upside down. we made sure every one of those families was taken care of. i know what it is to be commander in chief. i know what it is to lead. for someone who has no experience at all to suggest i don't, having lived overseas, having worked overseas, developing relationships with leaders overseas, being governor of the fourth largest state and being a commander in chief of the florida national guard, with all due respect, senator rubio, your four years or five years or whatever it is, as senator, does not match up to my capabilities of understanding how the world works.
>> jeb bush there, taking a pointed shot at florida senator marco rubio at a town hall in beaufort. i'm joined now by south carolina republican party chair matt moore. let's start there. let's talk about jeb bush. right now, as you know, barely polling in the double digits. depending on the poll you're looking at, not polling in the double digits just yet. how do we think he fares on saturday? >> well, there are a lot of story lines here in south carolina that will come to fruition in three days. i saw jeb last night in aiken, south carolina. i thought he was impressive there. he seems to have found his mojo with voters, has found a message that's resonating a little bit. i'm interested to see the numbers on saturday night. >> let's talk about this new poll out that came out this morning. something that really struck a lot of folks, nearly half of likely republican voters in south carolina say that they
have definitely decided. 20% are leaning towards someone. here's the eye-poppe. . 31% say they're still trying to decide. i was in my hotel room last night, and in a span of three minutes, i saw not one, not two, but five ads. how can anyone in south carolina who is a gop primary voter not have figured it out by now, matt? >> my wife and i have gotten about ten pieces of mail in the last three or four days here in south carolina. i think people are taking their time to make an informed decision. i think the debate last weekend had a big impact on people. i have seen polling before and after the debate. it says two different things as it relates to a few of the candidates. people are making their final pitches and there are literally dozens of rallies across the state, and people are making up their minds. >> one of the things that continues to strike me about the trump phenomenon here in south
carolina, especially, is just how well he continues to do with evangelical voters. so-called god voters. here's a guy that, you know, he has said himself, he is not necessarily the biggest man of faith. to what can we attribute his success in south carolina with evangelical voters, matt? >> well, i think some evangelical voters are looking for someone to fight with them. others are looking for someone who will fight for them. that seems to be the kind of voter that donald trump is attracting. other candidates are saying there's no fight at all. we should be serving people, living out the gospel message in our everyday lives. the people who support donald trump are looking for someone to fight for them, not necessarily concerned about some of the things in his past. for better or worse. >> not even that, though. here's the thing, matt. he says things at rallies that you can't even -- we can't repeat on cable. some of the insults that he's
hurled. how do you think that these faith voters are so willing to look the other way on some of this stuff? >> yeah, they think he'll fight for them, which is an interesting thing. religious liberty seems to be under attack in many corners of america. people want someone who will fight. and donald trump is promising to fight. that's really the defining, i think, characteristic of why he's getting so much support from evangelicals. >> does south carolina continue its tradition on saturday of picking the eventual gop nominee? >> i hope they do. my concern is the general election. i want to pick the next president here in south carolina. a lot of good choices on our side. a lot of story lines headed to the weekend. only a few tickets out of south carolina. we mentioned columbia. come back and visit us soon. >> i love columbia. you know i love columbia, especially this time of year when it's 2 degrees in connecticut. matt moore, good to see you, my friend. thanks for being with me. >> you, too. >> let's turn to the democrats for a bit here, and just over an
hour, hillary clinton will hold a get out the vote event in chicago where she'll be joined by the mother of sandra bland. of course, sandra bland was the woman found hanged in a texas jail cell after a police traffic stop last year. the visit comes as secretary clinton and bernie sanders both intensify their focus on the african-american community. secretary clinton meeting with civil rights leaders in harlem. she met with civil rights leaders in harlem tuesday. she gave a speech on racial inequality. she also knocked senator sanders without mentioning his name. >> there are still very real barriers holding back african-americans from fully participating in our economy and our society. you can't just show up at election time and say the right things and think that's enough. we can't start building relationships ofew weeks before a vote. >> joined now by naacp
president, cornell william brooks. mr. brooks, thanks so much for being with me on this wednesday. first, let me get your reaction to the comments we heard there from secretary clinton. >> well, certainly the secretary has a long relationship with the african-american community. and her positions are certainly well known. senator sanders has a relationship with the african-american community, and i believe it is going to be a tough, long fight for the african-american vote. and the african-american -- >> let me ask you, why is that? why is that, cornell? why do you think it's going to be such a tough, long battle? here you have a candidate, hillary clinton, whose husband, as you know, had a fantastic relationship, one could argue, at least by political standards, fantastic relationship with the black community. why have we not seen that relationship translate as well
with his wife? >> well, i would simply note this. no one can take, no party, no candidate can take the african-american vote for granted. nor can we take the votes of those who support a robust civil rights agenda for granted. so we do not see an african-american community that is monolithic. we have millennials. we have middle-aged voters, we have seniors, we have african-american women. we have white progressives who support our agenda and their nation's civil rights agenda and most particularly, the agenda of the naacp. it would be foolish in the extreme to take those votes, those constituencies and those concerns for granted. when we look at the digital activists, activists on the streets all across america, who are concerned about policing, who are concerned about ending, putting the words the end to this ugly story called the era of mass incarceration, that is
not a monolithic group. and those votes have to be fought for. you have to make arguments. you have to show up. you have to demonstrate a fluency and a literacy with respect to those issues, and make the case. the fact of the matter is, it would be a mistake, and we see all across the country a variety of validators and supporters for both senator sanders and secretary clinton. >> you met with the secretary yesterday. what did you say to her? what did she say to you? >> we said very clearly to secretary clinton that the nation's criminal justice challenges are real and profound. and that we need to bring this era of mass incarceration to an end, when we have 2.2 million people behind bars and 2 million children with their parents behind bars, we have to take on sentencing reform. we have to use that in courts.
passing ban the box. we made that case to the senator. she talked about the work that she has done with respect to those issues, as a senator and in terms of her work going back to her days in arkansas. it was a robust and frank conversation. but i believe the secretary well understands that it's important to compete for the african-american vote, and to demonstrate your commitment to a robust civil rights agenda. here's what we know. you cannot trash the nation's civil rights agenda during the primary season and expect to find gold on election day. every candidate should understand that. and if the path -- >> do you feel that there is a candidate that has been trashing the nation's civil rights agenda? >> well, we have seen candidates say all manner of -- >> who? >> certainly mr. trump has said all manner of things that do not
comport with the nation's highest moral and constitutional values. we have seen all kinds of zine aphobia, heard all kind of zen ophobic and islam ophobic statements coming out of him. >> cornell -- >> yes. >> we're out of time. we have to go, but really quickly, do you plan to endorse at some point here in the near future? >> no, the naacp is a nonpartisan organization and i do not plan to endorse any candidate in my personal capacity. all we're endeavoring to do is get all the candidates and the next president of the united states to focus on the agenda of the naacp which is the agenda of the country. >> i knew the answer was coming but i still had to ask the question. so president and ce oh cornell william brooks, always good to see you, sir. thank you for being with me. >> you'll hear much, much more from the democratic candidates during msnbc telemundo town hall. that is tomorrow night right here on msnbc at 9:00 eastern.
we're very busy here at msnbc these days. we're going to take a quick break. we'll be right back with much, much more from charleston, south carolina, after this. know your financial plan won't keep you up at night. know you have insights from professional investment strategists to help set your mind at ease. know that planning for retirement can be the least of your worries. with the guidance of a pnc investments financial advisor, know you can get help staying on track for the future you've always wanted. theand the kids always eat sky their vegetables.e. because the salad there is always served with the original hidden valley ranch. whose long dayis sheldon setting up the news starts with minor arthritis pain and a choice. take tylenol or take aleve,
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and welcome back to south carolina. all the polling again pointing to a huge donald trump primary victory here saturday, if that happens, it could very well give trump the momentum to run the table from here on out. but politico reporting this morning that some gop presidential campaigns are now preparing for a brokered convention. that is an indication they see this thing going to the bitter end. perhaps to the four in cleveland. how real is that outcome? i'm joined by national reporter for politico, eli stokals. thank you for being with me. let's talk about what's going on right now inside some of these campaigns and how they're going about preparing for this
possibility. >> well, right now, when it's xs and os, it's about winning south carolina and staying alive. those campaigns that think they're going to be viable longterm, trump, cruz, rubio, for sure, they're looking at this until the end and looking at these states after you win a state or however many delegates you get, you have to make sure you gets the delegates to cleveland in the summer. so some of these campaigns have to get people to go to the states, make sure there are people on the ground there, actually lining up the delegates to run, securing the slates so that when you go to cleveland, the votes, the delegates you think you have, are actually there. >> as we're having this conversation, we see donald trump wrapping up that town hall in bluffton. can you imagine a scenario this summer in cleveland, ohio, where you have this anti-establishment candidate who has managed to rustle away control from the party, to have the nomination snatched away from him at a brokered convection? what would that mean for the modern gop?
>> it might mean the end of the modern gop. if you think people are mad now, imagine what trump supporters will think once he wins -- he seems to win and then they try to take it away from him. if they're sick of party bosses now, this is potentially an explosive situation. a lot of people are contemplating all the possibilities. >> thanks for hanging out with me. i do appreciate you. thank you as well for hanging out with us in charleston. that's going to wrap up this hour of msnbc live. from here in charleston, south carolina. i'll see you back here from charleston at 3:00 eastern. thomas roberts up next. about an hour and a half away. he's got a live interview with the aforementioned donald trump. stay with us.
carson on your right. great to have you with me, everybody. i'm thomas roberts. we are live at the liberty tap room in columbia, south carolina. this is msnbc, election headquarters for the forth coming future. we have you covered as the republican candidates are storming all over the state today. they're crisscrossing back and forth because we're just three days from the gop primary. all of the candidates have a combined 15 events on the schedule today. as they make this final push before the first in the south primary. right now, donald trump just wrapped up a town hall in bluffton. he's going after president obama, who criticized him during a news conference yesterday. he also targeted the number two polling republican, ted cruz. take a look. >> he lies. just really lies. you can't let that happen. the one advantage i have is when he says something for me, i'm pro-life, and he'll say i'm pro-choice. i got a call from a reporter, i hear you're pro-choice. i said where did you hear that?
cruz. cruz? unbelievable. i'm pro-life. i say to myself, how can a guy be so dishonest? >> coming up, we'll speak with the gop front-runner. mr. trump is going to join us live later this hour, previewing his exclusive town hall this evening hosting by joe scarborough and mika brzezinski. we have a team of reporters traveling with all the candidates. we're going to have live reports from the correspondents covering four of the big campaigns in the next few minutes. i want to begin with trump's main rival in south carolina, ted cruz, the texas senator turning up the heat on the front-runner. reli releasing a five-minute video accusing trump of playing games with the issue of abortion. >> donald trump spent most of his adult life prior to this election enthusiastically pro-abortion, even for partial birth abortion, if you can believe it. now, donald trump is the only candidate left in the republican field who won't even pledge to
defund planned parenthood. which is why planned parenthood named donald trump their favorite republican last fall. >> msnbc's steve kornacki joins me with more on the cruz strategy in the final days. we saw donald trump defend planned parenthood on the debate stage when the attacks came up about abortion issues. what's ted cruz's game plan here? >> right, so i mean, where the cruz campaign is right now, we're a couple days away, and he's losing about 2 to 1 to trump in the polls. if there's a silver lining in that for cruz, it's this, a surprise finding in the poll. among evangelical voters here in south carolina, donald trump right now is leading ted cruz by about 20 points. this is -- there it is. the evangelical vote in this new cnn poll here in south carolina. this surprises a lot of people because the evangelical vote was the reason ted cruz was able to win iowa. it was the reason people looked at south carolina and said maybe he'll follow it up with a win here. if you're the cruz campaign,
you're disappointed by that, probably frustrated by that. you think maybe if we can press the issue, talk to the evangelical voters and say donald trump calls himself pro-life now. last time he was thinking of running for president in 2008, called himself very pro-choice. he has said and done things in the past that might unnerve evangelical voters. if you can draw attention to that, maybe you can chip away at that. basically two thirds of the electorate here oin saturday are going to call themselves evangelical christians. if you can make up any ground there, you're going to make up a lot of ground in the overall race. >> as we look at the number two and think about the fact it would take a cruz, rubio, and bush combined to even match and surpass that number of donald trump, is the biggest thing that evangelicals are attracted to the fact that donald trump is self-funded? is that the one chord that it really strikes with them? >> in talking to some people on this, it seems to be this message of strength that he's put out there. he's basically talking to evangelical audiences and you talk to evangelicals, people who know the evangelical world. they say, look, donald trump is
not fooling them. they don't believe he's the most pious guy. they don't believe he's going to church every day. what he's telling them is look, i'm the strongest guy in the race. i'm the toughest guy in this race. and i think, i think you guys, evangelicals, are the good guys. i'm going to use that strength to protect you as president. and i think that's what's resonating with them. the other thing, as we were talking to somebody on the ground here in south carolina when said look, if you poll the most conservative area of the state in the republican party and the most moderate area of the state in the republican party, there's the same leader in both parts. it's donald trump. this is support going across the board for him. he's doing really well with evangelicals, doing really well with moderate and liberal republicans. it's amazing. >> if we use south carolina as an example of the new national numbers going out from quinnipiac, also tell the tale of the huge lead he has. i want to move on to the latest on the trump campaign. we have the billionaire firing back at the president today. this was after president obama
suggested trump wasn't serious about the job. meanwhile, this new national or the new poll that is cnn/orc poll shows trump in first place in south carolina, with 38%. ted cruz in a distant second with 22%. it's that new quinnipiac poll out, though, that shows donald trump near 40%, and kerry sanders joins me now from a farm in tumpssumpter, about an hour here. donald trump will hold a rally in that town tonight. not a lot of people on site as of yet, but there are some things behind you that have already shown up. >> i'm a short distance away from where donald trump will be speaking. he's not going to be speaking in a field like this. in south carolina, the number one industry, of course, is the government. that is the military. number two is agriculture. we made our way here to a farm here where you can see the black angus getting fed. farmer chris sumpter is climbing out of the tractor here, and john's helping him. we thought we might talk to you. why don't you come out here, and
i know we're at a safe distance from the cattle, right? >> absolutely. >> you're a republican -- >> i'm a blue dog democrat. there's very few of us left, but i'm prout to call myself a blue dog democrat. >> you see this primary which in south carolina, you can vote in the republican or the democratic side. there's no like party affiliation required. what are you going to do, and have you made up your mind? >> considering the fact that i'm a county council candidate, running for a council seat, of course, i will be voting in the democratic primary. >> you're a farmer. you're also african-american. most farmers, not all, but most farmers are republican. what is it that you are or not hearing from any of the candidates when it comes to farm issues? >> i tell you, that's a good question that you bring up, because it's a very important issue. agriculture. nowadays, we're talking about fuel, food, and fiber. those are the driving forces of our essentials of our everyday
lives. and i have been paying close attention to all of the candidates and no one has yet touched on the agricultural industry. >> you're a young man, in college, studying but also helping on the farm. have you thought it through in terms of who you're going to vote for or if you're going to vote? >> not of right now. >> you hear the fighting. a lot of back and forth. donald trump, ted cruz, jeb bush on the republican side. many people say it's turned into a vicious food fight. what do you think as a voter when you watch this? >> honestly, i don't know anything about that. i haven't heard of anything about it. >> you're tuning it out? >> pretty much. >> okay. well, there you go. will you even vote? >> i don't know right now. most likely, i will. >> or is it because you're on tv and i'm just asking you? >> i haven't really decided. i probably will. i'll make my decision when it comes to it. >> if you had an opportunity to get a candidate to actually address the farm policy issues, what is the question, what is
the answer you would like to hear? >> i would tell you the question will be what are we going to do to improve and enhance the agriculture industry here in the u.s.? at this point, as i alluded to, there's only 1% of the population that actually farms. the average age is 62. now, i'm 23. and jonathan is a few years behind me here. we're the younger generation that's carrying it forward. we need to have legislation that's practical. and when i think of these presidential candidates addressing that issue, i think we need to be concerned about making sure that we have enough food to feed america. but not only that, to also make sure that we have the next generation taken care of, for generations to come. >> so you're a blue dog democrat. you could vote in the republican primary. you might do it as a defensive move. but you say you're going to vote in the democratic primary. >> absolutely. >> have you decided? >> i have decided that i'm going to vote in the democratic primary. there's no question or thoughts about that. >> which candidate?
>> i tell you what, i'm going to vote for the winner. so there you go. >> well, he doesn't want to reveal that. we're here with the very hungry black angus that are eventually going to be somebody's meal. you're 23 years old. you're even younger. you're volved maybe less, but you're watching this and you feel kind of encouraged that people are coming to your state, and they really want your vote. they're here for you. >> by far. >> but they're not answering your question. >> which is a big problem. i wish folks would hit more home on things that really matter in our everyday lives. that meal that's sitting on that table, that's what we need to be thinking about. >> you're 23 years old, but you're a fourth generation farmer. do you hear that from other farmers in the area? >> i do. i serve on the farm bureau board here, and there's quite a bit of us that get together on a quarterly basis and meet and discussion issues. we just metd a few weeks ago. >> that was the question, where
are the candidates talking about your concerns? >> absolutely. you know, there's nothing been addressed about agriculture industry. and it's just deplorable to see that. >> what about your u.s. senators, graham and scott, have they? >> senator scott has. as well as graham has touched on it a little bit. but i just don't think that we're at the point where agriculture is the thing that folks are talking about. folks are more concerned about average, everyday issues that are more appealing to society. and the status quo. and i think that a lot of times we need to go against the status quo and worry about the things that nature, such as agriculture, economic development, and higher education. >> gentlemen, thank you very much. i appreciate it. we're going to wrap this up. here we go. they're eating hay as they're waiting -- as a lot of hay is made in the state, i guess you would say, over who's going to get the vote here in south carolina in the primary just days away now. >> ah, a beautiful day here in south carolina. and you're in sumpter, following
donald trump on the trail. he's going to be holding an event there later this evening, also calling in to speak to us briefly this hour. kerry, thank you. >> we have the only other gop candidate consistently in double digits in the polling is marco rubio. rubio is also flying all over. crisscrossing the state today, holding a series of town halls and he too is taking aim at the front-runner, donald trump. rubio was introduced by senator tim scott this morning in mt. pleasant. >> we need a conservative that can win. i'm as conservative as anyone running in this race. i have a 15-year record of turning conservatism into action that proves it. i didn't become a conservative two and a half years ago. >> this afternoon, marco rubio will head all the way west to aiken. that's near the georgia border. and then back north to chappen, just a few miles from where we are now. chapen, maybe. gabe gutierrez is in aiken where
rubio is going to hold his next town hall in a few hours. i'm having a hard time with some of my southern pronunciations but i'm going to get through it. >> that's right, thomas. we're here in aiken, inside a hardware store in aiken. population of this town is around 30,000. and really, the talk of the town is this republican primary race, and this is an area that has seen many politicians before this store has seen the likes of nikki haley, mark sanford stopping by here. and i'm here with the owner of this hardware store. hey, slip. thanks for joining us. i wanted to talk to you. you supported mitt romney in 2012. who are you supporting this time around? >> i'm definitely going to support mr. donald trump for this election. and mitt romney would have been a great president, as we know, but i like the man's experience and executive experience, and his negotiating skills. and i'm just all in for the man. >> the reason we're here is marco rubio, in a few hours, is holding a town hall event. a challenge for senator rubio
has been trying to get the establishment part of the party or the republican party to coalesce around his candidacy. why are you choosing donald trump over marco rubio? >> marco rubio is a fine, fine young man. but he does not have the accomplishments and he doesn't have the experience to run this world. i mean, he can certainly be a good vice president, i would think. but at this time and place, i think america needs mr. donald trump. >> okay, so why not, for example, senator ted cruz instead of donald trump? what is it about donald trump that has really convinced you to support him? >> the private businessman that he is, me, our family being in business, we know what it is to make a pay roll and how to manage our little old thing we have here. but mr. trump is way above us as far as his experience and his expertise at negotiations, and he's not giving up his hand to
the people on what he's going to do overseas. he's been very, very close to the chest on this foreign policy, and i like that in the man. we don't need to telegraph what we're going to do six months from now if certain things come together over there. >> you say that you don't want to telegraph what he's going to do, but part of the criticism of donald trump has been, listen, he hasn't given a whole lot of details about his policy. do you want any specifics at all? >> not on these matters of national security. >> really? >> no, sir, because we knoet what he's going to do. he's going to get the right people lined up, be it military people, advisers and negotiators to say you people are going to do this or we're going to come get you. and again, i like the fact that he's not throwing all his plans out on the table. >> how about in domestic policy, for example? when it comes to donald trump, he's really shaking up the republican primary, but is it about time that he does give some details, if not on national
security, then perhaps on domestic issues? >> well, he's just said he's going to negotiate with the chinese and the mexican folks about getting an equitable trade practices in order. >> for example -- >> he's saying he's going to get the best negotiators to make sure that the chinese aren't devaluating their currencies to cause our products to be unaffordable in their countries, where their products are basically getting dumped on us, taking our jobs away. he wants to put jobs back in america. and if exercising his abilities and rights to put tariffs on the foreign products coming into our country, i'm all for it. we need to put americans back to work. we had a textile collapse down here 20 years ago. all those jobs are gone. >> so for you, you think because of donald trump's business experience, you being a business owner here, you have been here in this town for 40 years. that really rings true to you this time around. and marco rubio, he will say,
look, i may not have the most experience, although he does say he has foreign policy experience. the knock on him is he doesn't have enough experience. he believes he can unite this republican party and he can best take on the democrats. do you think that donald trump will be able to take on the democrats in the general election? >> oh, i very much think so. that's why i'm putting my belief in his abilities. and i tell you, marco rubio is a fine man. i think he'll be a great vice president, maybe, but again, i think we need to go for the person that has the most experience and the most know-how. i say know-how, again, he is a very intelligent man about putting deals together. and all that's going on in washington right now with the supreme court and so forth, he's right on board with what needs to be done. >> what about the second amendment? do you think donald trump and some of his opponents, ted cruz has said that donald trump has waffled on the second amendment. of course, trump will dispout
that. what do you think about donald trump and the second amendment? do you think he will be strong on that? >> kwl think he'll be rock solid on that. straight out rock solid. >> moving forward, you know, you told me this is often considered bush country. why is it that you're supporting donald trump this time around and not, say, jeb bush? >> because i think donald trump can win. >> okay. >> i don't think that mr. bush, and i respect their family. love george w. and his father. and their father, but i just don't think he's the right man for this time. >> thank you so much for talking to us. we really do appreciate it. thank you so much. this is -- >> good to meet you. >> you as well. a business owner who has been here for decades. guys, thomas, donald trump really shaking up this race. attracting voters like him, somebody who supported mitt romney in 2012. he feels donald trump is his best position to take on the democrats later this year. >> we can tell by the polling he has struck a chord.
he's going to be our guest when he calls in this hour. donald trump, the gop front-runner joining us. i'll let you get back to work, following the rubio campaign. >> coming up, we'll take a look at the left. hillary clinton set to campaign in chicago in less than an hour. later, she'll appear with the mom of sandra bland. i'll talk live with clinton supporter darrell jackson about clinton's efforts to reach minority voters. >> also ahead, we'll be speaking with donald trump. and can he, quote, unify our country? the question is how could he do it? he wants to do it, but what's the policy to get it done? we'll also get his reaction to president obama's prediction that trump is not electable. and a programmatic note, join joe and mika tonight for their exclusive town hall with donald trump, 8:00 eastern time. you can send them your questions using the hashtag hashtag, #trumpsctownhall. we're back after this. inally eah reward miles on your airline credit card.
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welcome back, everybody. coming up at the top of the next hoir, hillary clinton kicks off her get out the vote event in chicago, illinois. she'll be joined by geneva reed, the mom of sandra bland. she was the young woman found dead of an apparent suicide in a texas jail cell after a routine traffic stop. it's part of her appeal to ablack voters with 12 days to go before the democratic primary vote in south carolina, with african-americans make up the majority of the democratic
base. secretary clinton maintains a lead among black voters and in south carolina. joining me is senator darrell jackson. the senator has endorsed hillary clinton. when we look at the numbers when we get macro from the middle level, the most recent poll of
voters in south carolina finding among black voters, clinton leads 65% to 28%. the reuters/ipsos poll looks at the youth vote, and the margin shrinking to 46%, and then 33% for sanders. why do you find or the characterization that young folks are magnetized toward bernie sanders? >> well, first of all, i think secretary clinton has a great organization in south carolina. a lot of friends in south carolina. i think young people, particularly those that are getting involved in the first time, are very idealistic. and i think they're more attracted to things they hear without having the ability to perhaps vet them as much
as some who have been around for a while. >> you're saying the voters in south carolina, these folks, they need to be more pragmatic? >> i think when they hear things like $15 an hour minimum wage, free college tuition, those are great things. it sounds great. but the question is, how do you
make it happen? or who is best to make that happen? and i think once they see that, then it changes for secretary clinton, i think. >> when we look at the divide a little more, young voters beyond south carolina, our recent survey monkey poll looked at the millennial democrat voter nationwide, and clinton leads sanders among african-americans and among white voters under the age 30. sanders leads overwhelmingly, 75% to 22%. does that concern you when you think of youth throwing your weight behind hillary clinton, you want to see her secure the nomination. do you think she's viable to go all the way against a candidate sander snz. >> i think she is, because one thing which is good, sanders energizing a base of people who perhaps have not been involved. i think when, and i think she will win the nomination, the voters will be for secretary clint clinton. the good thing is it's helpful for the democratic party and very helpful for the democratic
process. >> we know that hillary clinton has received the support of the congressional black caucus pac. she's also appearing with sandra bland's mother coming up in chicago. however, we have the daughter of eric garner endorsing bernie sanders. the mom of eric garner has gone for secretary clinton. but this is the campaign ad where the daughter, erica garner, appears. take
a look. >> martin luther king died for this. malcolm x died for this. and who were they? they were protesters. i'm behind anyone who is going to listen and speak up for us. and i think we need to believe in a leader like bernie sanders. >> believe in bernie sanders. and we know that the clintons both combined, the former president and secretary clinton, have a combined service record that has been devoted to civil rights, to minority rights.
yet, we hear from young folks that they think that they trust bernie sanders more. >> i think you're hearing from some young people. there are many, many young people who trust secretary clinton also. i think you will see that on the 27th. i think when the votes are counted in south carolina, she will win. and i think that she will get a broad base of people from all segments. now, it is exciting that young people are backing bernie sanders. there's even more exciting that they're involved in the process. i think when it's all said and done, these voters will eventually be for secretary clinton. >> okay. what do you hear, though, about anybody that's interested in bernie or hillary, but also interested in donald trump? are you finding voters like that here, that typically lean democratic or independently but are attracted to a trump message? >> i think so. this are people who just like trump's rebellious spirit and the fact he takes on the establishment, but at the end of
the day, i am totally convinced
that south carolina will be for secretary clinton. >> south carolina state senator darrell jackson, thanks for being here. i appreciate your time. as we move back to the right and see how the field is shaping up, let's check in with how jeb bush is doing today. the so-called establishment candidate holding a town hall right now in beaufort, in south carolina's low country, an area that is home to a number of military installations. peter alexander is there for us and joins us with more. jeb has a busy calendar today as well, doesn't he? >> yeah, he does. not too far away from parris island is where we are, in beautiful downtown beaufort. it's important to note about this place that this is an area where we met a lot of people that describe themselves as p g pragmatic traditional republicans. they're looking for a candidate that may be able to compete with donald trump right now. i spoke to one woman earlier. i said, what do you do if you don't like trump? she said, we cry. right now inside, that's not the tack jeb bush is taking.
a lot of what he's saying
is focused on his chief rival in the race, marco rubio. he has focused on rubio's attacks on him for a lack of foreign policy experience, saying rubio's four or five years in the senate as a senator does not compare to his world understanding, his understanding of the way the world works. that has been an important line that we have been focusing on here, while rubio has held three town halls in recent days and hasn't answered any questions, the bush campaign is answering questions from all the voters they meet throughout the state right now. one thing that was interesting in our conversation with him privately on the bus is what happens for jeb bush going forward? they know they're not going to win the state. they do know they need to beat the other rivals to become the anti-trump, anti-cruz candidate. here's what he said when i asked him about what happens next. >> when do you win a state, when does jeb bush -- >> i can't tell you that. here's the deal.
you have 53 states left and territories. 53 of them. we've done two. i mean, come on. think about it. this is -- this is a long haul process, particularly how the rules of the republican party have been set up this time. >> and jeb bush is bringing out the big guns. his brother, george w. bush, his mom barbara bush, due on the campaign trail
here tomorrow. speaking of guns, he tweeted a picture yesterday that got a lot of traction online. it was a photo of a gun he received as a gift yesterday at a weapons manufacturing site that we were at with him. he had his name, governor jeb bush, engraved in it. the tweet was entitled "america." that turned into a quickly parodies viral sensation online. it also showed up on the front of the "new york daily news" today. he's also getting another series, i guess you could say scrutiny. people taking a loser look at another thing that has changed in terms of jeb bush. while his message appears the same, his appearance has changed
the same. no longer wearing the glasses. he tells me he got contact lenses on monday. donald trump also noting that, tweeting, jeb bush got contact lenses and got rid of the glasses. he wants to look cool, but it is far too late. so, the bickering between the two of them continues. back to you. >> peter alexander on the campaign trail with jeb bush. peter, thank you, sir. donald trump is going to be calling in to our program in the next half hour. maybe we'll ask him about the tweet on jeb bush. >> straight ahead, we'll look at new poll numbers out of nevada showing trump with a commanding lead and the democrats neck and neck. i'll talk to jon ralston and he'll help break down what's happening out west. you're watching msnbc, the place for politics.
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here in south carolina for all of the gop contenders. this is a live look at a ted cruz event that's going to take place in seneca, south carolina. he's going to be taking questions from reporters. that's coming up in a few moments, not far from here in seneca, south carolina. we're based in columbia, south carolina. and while we talk about what's taking place here in the palmetto state, we also want to focus our attention on nevada. for the first time, we're getting a solid look at how voters in that state feel about the presidential candidates. we have the new kcnn/orc poll showing trump with a massive lead. marco rubio is next with 19%. coming in last, jeb bush, 1%. joining me from las vegas, jon ralston, also host of rahralsto. when you see the numbers, especially given the fact we haven't had reliable polling for nevada, are you surprised by are trump sits at the top, and how
low bush sits at the bottom? >> let's take the first part first, thomas. i'm not surprised at all to see trump dominating. all the data i have seen indicates that he's winning by a large margin here right now, and all the campaigns, what really makes me think it's true is all the other campaigns, cruz, rubio, bush, the rest of them, indicate that they're playing for second place. they know trump is likely to win this state. as for jeb bush being at 1%, that doesn't make much sense to me at all. he has one of the better organizations here. so i would be very surprised if that's right. let me just be -- to be fair to cnn and orc on this, the caucus turnout here is probably going to be under 10%. very difficult to predict who's actually going to go. it's on a tuesday night, thomas. all 17 counties have different rules. there's a four-hour window to vote. so it's very difficult to predict who is going to do what. i have never seen polling before
a republican caucus in nevada that ended up being right. >> so i'm going to be speaking with donald trump coming up later in this hour, in a few minutes. jon, what would be the number one question you would want to hear donald trump answer? >> well, i guess what i would want to hear answer from trump vis-a-vie nevada, i'm wondering how he is going to play here to the people who are on the strip. you know, he's supposed to be negotiate atding a contract with the trump tower here. how is he going to get working men and women to vote for him in nevada and elsewhere? he's appealed to the reagan democrat cohort in other states. i'm wondering if he can pick that up across the board. it's an interesting phenomenon, one that should worry democrats in the general election who previously have said he has no chance to win. >> meanwhile, we have an indication coming ahead of nevada for jeb bush here in south carolina after we have republicans coming to the open
primary on saturday for him. do you feel as if south carolina is really a make it or break it for him, and 1% in nevada, hardly barely on the board. >> yeah, it's interesting what jeb bush is up to. you know, he has formed, as i said, maybe the first or second best organization here in the state. he's tried to get this strategy to try to rebound after what happened in iowa. didn't work for him in new hampshire. i don't know what he says, if he doesn't finish high in south carolina coming in to nevada. his super pac, right to rise, has spent a lot of money here in nevada, thomas, both on television and in the mail. mostly hitting marco rubio. he wants to finish either in front of marco rubio here or he's on some kind of kamikaze mission to destroy rubio. i think it's going to be very, very difficult for him to make the case. the real problem for jeb bush is i think he would have a chance if it were just bush versus trump. the other guys aren't going to get out. as long as you have three or four candidates running against
trump, he's probably going to win most of these contests. >> all right, jon ralston, thank you, sir. appreciate the breakdown. we have a lot to talk about as we continue our coverage here live from columbia, south carolina. we remain at the liberty tap room. and in this half hour, we're going to be speaking to the gop front-runner, donald trump. he's jumping around from event to event today here in south carolina. also has a town hall tonight with joe scarborough and mika brzezinski. he's going to be our guest in just a second right here on msnbc, when we come back.
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nominee right now? >> no, i just think i have to keep going from day to day, thomas. and we're doing very well. we have tremendous crowds all over. and we're doing very well. i never like to even think of myself as the front-runner. i just want to win it. we want to make america great again, as simple as that. but we are doing well. >> ted cruz, marco rubio, would consider you to be the front-runner, and you are their target. ted cruz especially going after you. there was a pro-cruz commercial i saw today saying he was the only one who can defend the constitution and protect our liberty. he failed to overturn obamacare. do you think you can overturn the aca if elected? >> i'll tell you what, not only did he fail to overturn obamacare, he appointed the judge who gave us obamacare. he was the one who pushed so hard for john roberts to be a justice of the supreme court. so ted cruz really, really did a great disservice to the people like myself that want to see obamacare totally repealed and replaced. he was really -- i mean, if you
look at john roberts, he had two chances to end it, and he voted against, and it was a disaster. and you saw what ted cruz did with ben carson. and it was a big lie. and ted, you know, he lies. i have never seen anybody lie like him. even marco rubio said he lied. i felt much better when he said that, that way i could say it also. he's not an honorable guy, but that's okay. >> you have a town hall tonight with joe and mika here on msnbc. i know you did not feel as if you were treated fairly by the debate for the audience at the rnc. a term you like is burn grass. so are you about to burn grass with the rnc about being treated unfairly? >> i don't exactly know the term burn grass, to be honest with you, but i tell you this. i'm self-funding my campaigcamps you know. the other people are getting money from all of the different industries thrk pharmaceutical
industry, et cetera. all those people were in the hall. i had no people except for my family, i had no people in the hall, because of the fact that i'm not special interest, i'm not getting special interests or donor money. i thought it was a very unfair situation. i think the rnc handled it very badly. it's just one of those things. most polls showed i won the debate. based on the new polls you told me about, i guess i didn't do badly in the debate because it seems i'm doing very well with the polls. >> your message is getting across. thanks very much. safe travels and we'll see you tonight with joe and mika. >> thank you very much, thomas. so long. >> coming up next, we have new reaction to what you just heard from donald trump. a journalist who has been covering south carolina for more than 20 years. so what is it about trump's charm and political appeal to the voters here? also, that reminder that mr. trump will be joining joe and mika, that exclusive sit-down, a town hall this
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all right, so we're watching seneca, south carolina, a shot from the ted cruz campaign. he's going to be taking questions from reporters coming up here in a brief moment. we'll carry that live for you on msnbc, bring you any developments out of that. we're watching closely the republican presidential candidates as they crisscross south carolina ahead of saturday's gop primary. donald trump, jeb bush, john kasich, they have all had events today. time is of the essence. joining me now is anchor for our nbc affiliate, judy gats. you were sitting with me for the donald trump interview. why do you think he's resonated so well with south carolina voters? >> you know, thomas, i really wonder a lot of times if donald trump actually started running for the presidency when he started doing the apprentice. everybody knows him, they know what to expect from him. and south carolina, so many voters are just angry about
promises that have been made, in their view, broken, and they feel like for better or worse, they know what they get with donald trump. he's going to say a lot of things they of things they might not be able to say and it's resonating. >> so, you're saying that you think most of this is baked in because we've known donald trump as a celebrity prior to being a politician and that's been able to transfer? >> think about it. the things that he has said that has been considered so outlandish and in some cases if you heard it out of the one of the other candidates a lot of people would call it racist. because of donald trump, it's an expectations game. people expect him to say things that are blunt, brash, outrageous considered by some. so when he says it, it's just trump being trump. >> meanwhile, we have hillary clinton and bernie sanders on the other side. >> right. >> dominating the conversation of how much of a contender senator bernie sanders is against a political rock star that we've all known for decades now in a hillary clinton.
are you surprised by the fact that bernie sanders has been able to carve a way at support for clinton here? >> you know, i'm really not surprised because there's just that unique quality about him. i talked with some young folks in our news room. they think he's a rock star, you know? they're excited about bernie sanders. they haven't necessarily decided and committed to vote for him. there's something about that unique quality, that authenticity that is very appealing especially to young voters. >> we just got that e-mail in that jeb bush is now having a fund raising e-mail sent out by his brother, george w. you may have seen me this week, for the first time i left office i hit the campaign trail brought back fond memories. i sensed americans are yearning for a strong leader. his mom will be coming out and joining him here. >> she'll be a rock star. >> do you think that that's going to help? because barbara bush came out in new hampshire and that certainly helped lift some speed under jeb bush, but the bush hasn't done well here in south carolina
before, but can it really help jeb at this point? >> thomas, i doubt that. it goes back to an interview you had on just a short time ago a farmer here in south carolina. they like the bushes very much. they just don't think he is necessarily the leader for this moment in history. so, people will be excited to see him. i think that mentioning at the rally earlier this week that they met with governor haley was the next best thing to an ens dorsment. i'm not sure it's going to drive people to vote for him on saturday. >> what are you hearing act jim clyburn and whether or not he'll be endorsing early for hillary clinton or bernie sanders? >> i think that he may be is going to reserve that at this time. it seems like hillary clinton has a very comfortable lead, although sanders is doing a lot of hard work on the ground to try to close that gap, but so far congressman clyburn has not indicated that he's going to make an endorsement, but certainly if he does, it could
be pivotal in this race. >> absolutely. he hinted it might come early. he does not make an early endorsement for a primary but we're watching. thank you. we're going to be back from columbia, south carolina. just a reminder for all of you, donald trump will be joining joe at the exclusive town hall tonight 8:00 p.m. eastern right here on msnbc. a heart attack doesn't care if you run everyday, or if you're young or old. no matter who you are a heart attack can happen without warning. if you've had a heart attack, a bayer aspirin regimen can help prevent another one. be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen. bayer aspirin. i built my business with passion. but i keep it growing by making every dollar count.
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♪ i want to give you an eye of what we are watching for you today on the left hand side of your screen, this unexpected news conference from ted cruz, where they have said they will, quote unquote, ratchet things up. we have that live look at what they want to talk about. in the center, hillary clinton at an event in chicago, illinois, where she's going to be campaigning with the mother of sandra bland. on the right hand side of your screen, john kasich is in bluffton, south carolina. a lot of criss-crossing going on today as candidates here on the
gop side are trying to hit every stop they can in south carolina, ahead of the gop primary this saturday. don't forget to watch msnbc town hall this evening, donald trump will be joining joe and mica. send us your questions using the #trumpsctownhall at 8:00 p.m. thanks for watching this hour live of msnbc. coming up next, "andrea mitchell reports." this is joanne.
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any of our other god-given rights other. >> it's part of the campaign strategy to not tell the truth and it's troubling. it really is. >> it's not what he says, it's the fact that he says it louder and louder and louder and you have to keep talking through it. i've gotten better at it. ra, ra, rar. taking on trump. president obama can't resist. >> i continue believe that mr. trump will not be president. it's not hosting a talk show or a reality show. it's not promotion. not marketing. it's hard. and southern comfort, trump tries to outcarolina charleston native stephen colbert. >> you're down in south carolina. i'm from south carolina. i want to help you out here, let's hear you say, please vote for me, y'all. >> please vote for me, y'all.
♪ and good day, y'all, i'm andrea mitchell in washington. no matter how hard they run, they just can't catch up. donald trump far out in front in south carolina and hasn't made him any more cautious about insulting his rivals. >> senator cruz, he'll say anything. they lie and the reason i can say that nicely is that rubio called him a liar also. so once another guy called him a liar, it's easier for me to call him a liar, but really cruz does lie. i'm finding out all i can do is tell the truth. i tell the truth about iraq and, you know, i say we should have never been there and if bush is insulted, i don't care if he's insulted. what difference. it was a horrible mistake. >> and any moment we're expecting what the cruz campaign is calling a do-not-miss news conference with the texas senator. stand by for that as he prepares. this is hillary clinton who is feeling the bern. bernie sanders closing in on clinton's once comfortable lead
in nevada. our team has the very latest from the candidates in south carolina. katie tur in walterboro and beater alexander in beaufort and kristen welker covering the democrats and hillary clinton is about to hold a get out the vote event. and at this hour first, katy what are we hearing from donald trump at the town hall today? >> well, donald trump is trying to mimic what happened in new hampshire. what he's doing here, he was doing there in the last few days. he's doing rallies. he is doing what we're called otr stops where he shakes hands with voters and gets up close and personal with them. he is also blanketing the air waves doing a town hall with msnbc. he is calling into shows and trying to get out his message as much as he can in order to continue with this very sizable lead here. he has in south carolina been going after george bush. he is going after ted cruz, but
we have seen him back away a little bit from the george bush attacks. stepping away from the lies and from the impeachment. instead now saying that the country made a mistake and that he thought that we should have never gone into iraq. he's doing that, i'm told, because his advisers were telling him that he was getting some push back on the campaign trail, push back from voters down here in south carolina who like george w. bush and getting push back from volunteers at his phone bank saying they were speaking with voters on the phone who didn't necessarily like that. that's why you're seeing donald trump now easing up on that a little bit, but he is still going after ted cruz an going after mitt romney using paul ryan saying that's why he lost in 2012. take a listen. >> remember the wheelchair being pushed over the cliff when you had ryan chosen as your vice president, that was the end of that campaign, by the way, when they chose ryan. i like him. he's a nice person, but that was the end of campaign. i said, you got to be kidding because he represented cutle
entitlements, et cetera, et cetera. >> and paul ryan was for drastically changing medicare, using a vouchers. donald trump says he is not going to do that. that's why he is saying that paul ryan was the knife in the back essentially to mitt romney's campaign. he is using that down here saying although they chose mitt romney and they wanted him to win, he did not win. if they choose donald trump, he will be the better general election candidate. he will be able to beat in his words hillary clinton or bernie sanders. andrea? >> katy tur, thanks so much. ted cruz is talk right now. he has a new ad that he's playing. let's listen. >> by threatening that if we will not pull down the ad that mr. trump will seek immediate legal action to prevent the continued broadcast of this ad. and to hold me jointly and severally liable to the fullest extent of the law for any damages resulting there from.
you know, i have to say to mr. trump, you have been threatening frivolous lawsuits for your entire adult life. even in the annals of frivolous lawsuits, this takes the cake. so, donald, i would encourage you, if you want to file a lawsuit challenging this ad, claiming it is defamation, file the lawsuit. it is a remarkable contention that an ad that plays video of donald trump speaking on national television is somehow defamation. the opera tiff words in that ad come from donald trump's own mouth. and i understand if a candidate has a record like donald trump's
how he could consider anyone pointing to his actual record being defamation. but if donald trump files the lawsuit that he threatens in this letter, that lawsuit will be frivolous and it will result in both donald trump and any lawyer that signs his name to the pleadings being sanctioned in court for filing frivolous litigation. but before the lawsuit ends in sanctions for mr. trump, it will be important to try the merits of case. now, any first-year law student can tell you in a defamation case, truth is an absolute defense. which means the substance of the case will be whether or not donald trump has, in fact, been pro-choice. now, i would note actually in the ad, we don't say donald is pro-choice. we simply play video of him
saying he is very pro-choice and he is pro-choice in every respect. but, if mr. trump follows through on his threat to file this defamation lawsuit, there are at least four data points that will be relevant in litigating this lawsuit. number one, the tim rhusert interview. his own words said on national television are a matter of public record and by definition repeating someone's own words cannot be defamation. and once again, what he said on national television is that he is very pro-choice. he would not ban partial birth abortion and he is pro-choice in every respect. a second data point that would surely be relevant, is mr.
trump's statement in august of 2015, that he believes his sister would make a, quote, phenomenal supreme court justice. now, who is his sister? his sister is a court of appeals judge appointed by bill clinton. his sister has an extreme left wing record on the issue of abortion. indeed, his sister -- >> katy tur, we've seen ted cruz really call donald trump's bluff. you've got ted cruz, who is a harvard lawyer, argued in front of supreme court, no one has ever challenged his legal credentials and he is now going after trump and claiming this would be a frivolous lawsuit and if it's defamation, you get to try it and you parade across the court all of donald trump's past statements on abortion rights and the like. how is trump going to respond to this? >> reporter: i think the trump campaign is going to respond to this by being very vocal by how
they feel that ted cruz has not been fair. being fair is a big thing in the donald trump campaign. that is one of the things they harp on quite a bit. the rnc was not being fair to them, that's why they were threatening a third-party run. they don't think the media is fair to them. they don't think ted cruz is being fair to him. i think we'll expect to see him talk about that, whether he files this lawsuit, we're going to have to wait and see. i'm not sure that there was frankly an intention to do so. i don't know, though. we're going to have to see if donald trump follows through with this. it is interesting though because ted cruz himself is a lawyer and does know what it would take to get a lawsuit like this won or lost. >> indeed. he was really pouncing and he was almost relishing it just now in watching that. gabe gutierrez, katy, has been tracking marco rubio. rubio has also been critical of cruz. this is a complete circular firing squad. gabe? >> reporter: hey, there, andrea. good afternoon.
we're here in achen, south carolina, about idyllic of a southern town as you can get. marco rubio is expected to hold a rally here in just about two hours or so. he started the day in mt. pleasant, south carolina. and you mentioned, andrea, that, yes, marco rubio has been going after ted cruz over the last several days, really trying to get some of his evangelical voters to come over into his camp. that will be a big key for marco rubio right now. his campaign is insisting that if this were to be a two-man race between marco rubio and donald trump, they feel very confident in that. but the question will be, how do they get these -- all these other voters to coalesce around marco rubio? there's been a lot of talk over the last few days, can marco rubio get the jeb bush voters? but he's obviously and his campaign has made a calculation that they can get some of these voters, these evangelicals that were going after ted cruz. now, it seems that marco rubio campaign that they're really trying to turn the page from that disappointing fifth place finish in new hampshire over the
last few days here in south carolina, they've tried to run less scripted campaign. in trying to have the candidate interact with his rallies more and talk about his personal story to appeal to those evangelical voters. so, the question will be how hard does marco rubio go after ted cruz in the next few days and does that translate into votes? can he finish in second or third place here in south carolina? the campaign also hesitant to get into the expectations game but they need a strong finish in south carolina heading into nevada. andrea? >> thanks to gabe gutierrez and to peter alexander. he has to beat expectations here. i was fascinating by your interview with him yesterday. >> reporter: yeah, he made the point you made right there. he recognizes the real challenge is to beat expectations. they're not going to win this state. they're not going to beat trump or cruz. who comes in third? it's like deja vu all over again
from new hampshire. they need to beat both john kasich who they are less concerned about than they are about marco rubio. today at the event that wrapped up only a short time ago, jeb bush we saw just passing by taking a little breather on his bus right now focussed a lot of his comments on marco rubio himself, trying to create that contrast, specifically on this idea of foreign policy and who is better prepared as a potential commander in chief. take a listen to the former florida governor. >> marco rubio is a friend of mine. he is a gifted speaker, for sure. he said i don't have foreign policy experience. wow. coming from a guy whose office has a hard time actually saying what his accomplishments are, who says going to hearings to listen to smart people talk about things rather than actually leading, that's kind of a low blow, if you think about it. >> reporter: jeb bush's campaign really bringing out the big guns as it were. there was his brother, george w. bush on the campaign trail for him -- with him for the first
time this week. w. out with a fund raising letter on jeb's behalf just a short time ago. barbara bush is due to join the campaign trail tomorrow as he communicated to me when we shared that time with him on the bus just yesterday. but on top of that, yesterday afternoon the campaign put out a tweet that got a lot of attention. it was a picture of a handgun with governor jeb bush engraved into the side of it with the caption, america, which was rapidly parodied as well, jeb is also getting parodied for taking off his glasses and wearing contacts. he says it makes him feel more comfortable and he can see better. donald trump says it's a last ditch effort to try to look cool. he wants to look cool as trump says but it's far too late. we're waiting to see what jeb bush has to say about that, andrea? >> the taunts are flying back and forth. peter alexander and the whole team, thank you. kristen welker in chicago covering the democrats and they've been having a tightening race and a nasty race at that. a close race in nevada polling todays showing them virtually
tied. certainly hillary clinton has blown a double-digit lead. >> reporter: well, that's absolutely right. you can tell that the clinton campaign is nervous about that. they have been pouring millions of dollars into television ads in nevada for the first time actually topping senator sanders in tv ads. secretary clinton adding events to the calendar in nevada and of course down playing expectati s expectations. focussing on south carolina and she to do that has been courting african-american voters. yesterday she had that big address on race. today i'm told she is going to echo some of the themes she talked about yesterday. she will talk about the fact that she wants 2 billion more dollars for public education. her plans to take on the criminal justice system, voting rights. but she had some sharp language for senator sanders as well, accusing him of being late to this conversation about racial justice and equality. that's a criticism that senator
sanders has brushed aside, saying, look, he was a part of the civil rights movement. he has his own plans to reach out to african-american voters, but this is becoming increasingly contentious, andrea. we expect secretary clinton to take the stage in just a short while from now. the african-american voters are critical if she hopes to win the nomination. andrea? >> from that speech, which was delivered in harlem, this was the critical moment in that speech. hillary clinton losing her voice, campaigning overtime and giving a speech on race. >> we democrats have a special obligation. if we're serious about our commitment the poor, for those who need some help, including african-americans, if we continue to ask black people to vote for us, we cannot minimize the realities of the lives they lead. we can't just show up in
election time and say the right things and think that's enough. we can't start building relationships a few weeks before a vote. >> that's exactly what kristen welker was talking about. thanks to you, kristen. that is a real slam at bernie sanders and his efforts to recruit african-americans in advance of nevada and south carolina. we'll have all of this continuing throughout the hour and tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on msnbc, joe scar bro and mika are sitting down with donald trump in charleston, south carolina, only three days before the republican primary showdown. if you have a question for donald trump, tweet @morningjoe. coming up, neck in neck after a crushing loss in new hampshire, a new poll shows hillary clinton is tied with bernie sanders in this weekend's nevada caucus. clinton supporter, new hampshire governor and senate candidate joins us next right here on "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. to folks out there whose diabetic nerve pain... shoots and burns
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♪ and one week after resounding defeat in new hampshire, hillary clinton faces a possible upset in nevada, where bernie sanders is closing fast, has tied in a new cnn poll out tonight. maggie hassan joins me now. let me ask you about the politics of all of this because hillary clinton is really -- she lost her big lead in nevada by all accounts and clearly bernie sanders is catching fire. what can she do to stabilize her campaign? >> well, she's doing what she's always done, which is working as hard as she can for each and every vote. we always expected that the race will tighten as people focus on the coming primary or caucus day.
and what i know is that hillary clinton is both as she would put it a dreamer and a doer and she is really focussed not only on the dysfunction and control by special interests of washington, but she's focussed on what we can actually do to change that and to move forward and make sure that hard-working families can once again know that they can work to get ahead and stay ahead and that their kids will have a better future than they do. >> and governor, how much of an issue do you think the supreme court the vacancy, the untimely tragic death of justice scalia but the way republicans are handling it, the way mitch mcconnell responded within two hours of the announcement, how much might that become an issue? >> well, i think voters will certainly join with my frustration that within just as you put it two hours of justice scalia's death already the senator republicans were saying
that they would block any nomination that the president makes to fill that vacancy. and my opponent in this senate race followed almost immediately saying she would put her party's leadership and party's position before the interests of people of new hampshire and the people of the united states in having that vacancy filled. the president has a constitutional obligation to nominate and the senate has an obligation to advise and consent, ultimately decide whether to confirm the nominee and that they would immediately say that they just don't want to do their jobs, speaks to the frustration that the people of our country and in new hampshire have with the dysfunction in washington and i'm very concerned that my opponent is a part of that dysfunction. >> clearly senator ayotte, whom you refer to and mitch mcconnell, the leader, they think this will energize their base. she is looking at the new hampshire results and she jumped in right away. could this disadvantage democrats by getting the
republicans out? >> i think all americans understand the importance of having a full slate of supreme court justices who are responsible for deciding issues that affect the lives of hard-working, granite staters and hard-working americans that affect the individual rights of hard-working granite staters and hard-working americans, the constitution provides that the president has an obligation to nominate. the senator has an obligation to do its job. the fact that mitch mcconnell and my opponent have said they just don't want to do their jobs because of partisan politics puts their party before the people and i think that's exactly what you saw concerned the electorate in new hampshire and concerns the electorate in other states too and throughout the country. here we have a washington controlled by special interests and by party politics. the senate putting the republican party in front of
their constitutional obligation to do their job. i am hoping that they will take a minute, take a deep breath and find a consensus way forward. they at the very least should find out who the president would nominate before they make up their minds that they're just not going to do their job and leave a critical seat on the supreme court empty at a critical time in our country's history. >> do you think it would be politic for the president to try to nominate someone who has been recently confirmed, who is a potential consensus candidate and give the republicans someone whom it would be hard to reject? >> i think what's really important is for the president to nominate a highly skilled attorney with excellent experience that prepares him for the court of high moral and ethical integrity, who also understands the way the decisions that the supreme court affect the lives of hard-working granite staters and americans everywhere. if the president focuses on that
and if the president engages with the senate, and i'm hoping that mitch mcconnell and my opponent and any other senators who expressed concerns about this, would actually talk with the president. we've seen senators like susan collins of maine and jed greg when he was a senator talk about the importance of not politicizing this critical constitutional process. what i think everyone in washington should start focuses on is what matters to hard-working americans, not to the political party and not to the special interests who are calling the shots right now in washington. >> governor, thank you very much. thanks for joining us today from new hampshire. >> thank you very much, andrea. thanks for having me. >> you bet. we will be hearing directly from hillary clinton and bernie sanders tomorrow night right here on msnbs. that's tomorrow night 9:00 p.m. eastern right here on msnbc. and coming up, dangerous
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♪ welcome back. apple ceo tim cook is in a heated standoff with the government after a judge ordered the tech giant to unlock an iphone used by one of the san bernardino killers. in an open-letter published late tuesday, cook pledged to fight what he called a government overreach that could impact millions of people. pete williams joins me. i know you understand this so well. it is complicated. this is the whole back door, front door thing. >> couple things that are interesting here. first of all, what apple is not saying is we can't do this. what they're saying is we shouldn't have to do this. now, this all gets down to the way that you get into an iphone. the iphone that they found that they want to get into is like
this. it's actually a 5c. but you have to enter this code in order to get into the phone. and the trick here and what the fbi wants to defeat is a security feature in the phone. if you punch the wrong number in more than ten times, the contents of the phone are permanently scrambled. it's kind of a self destruct security feature. so the fbi says, we want apple to -- and the judge has ordered apple to do this -- plug something into the phone that will down load software will defeat the security feature and allow the fbi to have a computer that will just keep entering numbers until it hits on the right combination and unlocks the phone. they're not saying to apple, give us the combination because apple probably doesn't know. you could design this software. you could in essence give us a master key that would get into just this phone. apple says, well, if we do this once, then, you know, other governments will ask us to do it. we had said before this phone was unbreakable. we would be making it now so it isn't.
hackers could conceivably do this and would jeopardize the privacy of our customers who after all store more and more of their private lives on phones. >> and privacy and that guarantee is part of their dna. >> and their whole marketing plan here. the whole sort of post snowden marketing for cell phone makers. >> it's the whole privacy versus security issue but they may be on the wrong side of consumer sentiment post paris and post san bernardino. >> that's an interesting question here. the fbi had been saying before this whole court order business that one of the phones they found was actually found in the lexus sedan that belonged to syed farook's mother, the phone was owned by the county. he worked for the county, did health inspections. the county says fine with us if you open the phone. the owner of the phone says it's fine, but only apple can do this. and as i say, apple originally when started marketing these later generation phones said to its customers, here is a phone
that's gettable into if you lock it. now, apple is basically saying, well, it's not quite right. we could be forced to do this. we shouldn't have to do this and the whole debate comes at a time, as you point out, where the government is saying, hey, this is a terrorism case. we want to know what else were they planning? were they involved with anyone else? today the police commissioner in new york bill bratton at a news conference says there's a lot of stake here. we really need this for terrorism cases, kidnapping, child porn. there shouldn't be a place where you can stick stuff where the law enforcement people can't find and that's really the whole sort of essence of the debate. >> was this a regular federal judge or fica? >> this is not the foreign intelligence surveillance act court. this is straight up law enforcement. this is a judge federal district court judge who issued this. and now apple says it will fight it. the judge in his order said apple if you don't want to do this, come back to me within five days. of course they are going to fight it legally. >> this is a very big deal
indeed. lot of precedence going to be set. pete williams, thank you as always. >> my pleasure. coming up, we'll check back on the campaign trail right here on "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc, the place for politics. and an early morning mode. and a partly sunny mode. and an outside... to clear inside mode. transitions signature adaptive lenses now have chromea7 technology... making them more responsive than ever to changing light. so life can look more vivid & vibrant. why settle for a lens with just one mode? experience life well lit®. upgrade your lenses to transitions® signature™. visit your local visionworks and start living a life well lit with transitions® lenses. trust safelite. with safelite's exclusive "on my way text" you'll know exactly when we'll be there. giving you more time for what matters most. (team sing) ♪safelite repair, safelite replace.♪ i am totally blind. i lost my sight in afghanistan.
to see how much you could save on car insurance, go to geico.com. ah! (car alarm sounds) it's ok! the ted cruz news conference is still going on in south caroli carolina. cruz is attacking his rival, donald trump. >> let me note one of the things one of the things i look forward to most of all. is deposing donald trump. for that particular endeavor, i may well not use outside counsel. i may take the deposition myself. and i will say this, whether in a deposition or a court of law, getting donald trump under oath, under penalty of perjury, answering these questions, i'll
point out it didn't work out very well for bill clinton. >> well, joining me now for our daily fix the new york times nick confy sorry. nick, this is all getting -- it's spiraling out of control but you don't want to take on ted cruz on the law if you're donald trump or do you? >> i don't know, i think this is ted cruz making a bold move in the waning days of the south carolina primary. he is way behind donald trump. he has to do something to change that, to raise doubts about trump. to find some way to push him back. i think this is it. by the way, andrea, it's a really trumpian maneuver to get all the networks to carry your press conference. it's impressive. it's a very trump thing to do. >> indeed, it is. on top of all of this, you've got the drama of rubio going after cruz and jeb saying look at me, i need a place here as well. the south carolina primary is really donald trump and the also rans.
>> yeah. look, i think this race is very clearly turning into a trump/cruz race. i think that both rubio and jeb bush understand that what happens in south carolina is going to set the tone for a lot of the rest of the race. certainly for jeb bush, but also for marco rubio. i think they had hoped to do better. you see a bit of advisers of his spinning today that a third-place finish in south carolina would not be too bad, would be kind of a win maybe. and that's the kind of prep you do when you're hoping not to come in fourth and maybe you might come in second. >> and i want to ask you about the president's news conference yesterday out in california because he asked donald trump and the others and the president was asked, what about trump? and the way this has been played, he took on trump and he did. he could have resisted. he could have blown it off. how smart was that for the president to go after donald trump who responded immediately?
>> look, i've heard so many different theories of this at this point. was it obama trying to secretly boost trump by attacking him to boost him in the eyes of his supporters to make it mono iman know to help trump. truthfully i think the president was speaking from the heart. he was saying exactly what he believes about trump. think about it, he is the opposite of the candidate that obama tried to be, certainly in 2008. he's the antithesis of barak obama. i think it's very clear when he spoke about trump being unprepared or trump being bombastic or divider that he was speaking from his heart. >> and, in fact, he's speaking from the perspective of someone who was so demeaned by donald trump back in 2008 with the whole birther movement, just think of how painful and insulting and diminishing that was for barak obama to hear that from donald trump at the time. but here is what he said at that news conference yesterday in
california. >> i'll leave it to you to speculate on how this whole race is going to go. i continue to believe mr. trump will not be president. and the reason is because i have a lot of faith in the american people. and i think they recognize that being president is a serious job. it's not a matter of pandering and doing whatever will get you in the news on a given day. >> they spent a lot of interpretation as to what the president said in his evaluation of the democratic race. i personally did not interpret it as saying he was about to declare or come out in favor of hillary clinton against bernie sanders. he has indicated he would not do anything while this primary is still in place. i'm not sure what your take was, though. some are interpreting it as saying he is thinking about getting in. >> well, i saw that as a clear effort to avoid trying to get in, when obviously it's clear where his heart is. i think it's pretty clear that
president obama favors hillary clinton in this primary. he sees hillary clinton of these two candidates as his best successor. he knows her well. she served in his cabinet. it's not rocket science for me, but i think when you saw him back up at that statement and said, well, there's some things that bernie sanders agrees with me more on, that was a cleanup in aisle five in the moment. i don't think he wants to get involved or intervene. it can't help the candidate that he sort of obviously prefers hillary clinton, if he does get involved. in fact, i think it would only fuel what bernie sanders has been saying about the party establishment. so i think it's best if he stays out and he knows that and he wants to stay out if he can. >> and, nick, the other part of the republican race, john kasich talking to chris matthews just now also was asked about trump. let's watch. >> last thing on trump, can you imagine him as president? can you think of him up there on
the stand of the west front of the cab becoming president of the united states? >> it's kind of hard for me to believe. >> is it? are you with president obama on that that he'll never be president? >> chris is such -- >> he can't be president. >> that's right. that's right. i think what i believe is going to happen is i think little by little as the debate stage shrinks, it's not just the debate stage. that's the dumbest way to pick a president. tell me the history of the world, go. you have 30 seconds. it's ridiculous. but i think the ground game, the town halls, you know, raising money, having a positive message, i just believe it's going to work. >> you got to believe, nick, john kasich. there's a whole lot more to that interview that we'll be watching later. but just briefly, kasich has gotten some traction, at least in new hampshire. >> i think so, but look, i think this whole question about can you possibly picture him in the white house, i want to urge everybody to read the age of jackson, it's a great history of
andrew jackson. you know, he also horrified sophisticated people. he horrified the establishment people. they thought there was no way this man could possibly occupy the white house, but in fact he rode at the head of a popular uprising and people were angry and put him in the white house. i think anything is possible in the white house including john kasich coming back. >> "the age of jackson." great book. great to see you, nick. nevada voters will hear from hillary clinton and bernie sanders tomorrow night in the msnbc telemundo town hall live from las vegas 9:00 p.m. eastern mon rated by chuck todd and jose. coming up, southern hospi l hospitali hospitality. what do voters think of the south carolina slugfest? you're watching "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc.
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in south carolina, the newest polls show that donald trump continues to hold a commanding lead against his nearest rival, senator ted cruz. craig melvin is live in charleston, south carolina. craig, you're from there. you know the state. you know the people. what are people telling you about -- especially after saturday night's debate how nasty this race has become on the republican side? >> reporter: first of all, folks down here, they're so excited every four years the little old south carolina gets so much attention from journalists all over the world, andrea. i was just talking to a fellow over at the deli who is pretty excited about the prospect of seeing and hearing from donald trump later. you have a great deal of that, even folks who are not trump supporters, folks we talked to can't seem to get enough of hearing donald trump. so it's going to be interesting to see how that plays out over here -- over the next few days. i was in columbia yesterday for the broadcast and had an event
at the university of south carolina last night and managed to talk to some students there and here in charleston today. we'll be in lexington tomorrow far more conservative than charleston. charleston is interesting as you know because you have a large part of the population, you have folks who are from charleston, sixth, seventh generation, but you have a lot of folks from up our way in new york, you have a lot of folks who spend their winters down this way. you've got a large veterans population here as well. so this is -- charleston typically, typically not as conservative as say your greenville or spartanburg but not left leaning as your columbia. this of course the same county that went for mitt romney four years ago. donald trump, as you know, polling very well in south carolina. also polling very well here in charleston, as i understand it. it's interesting, though, because you talk to folks who were here and a lot of folks that are watching us right now,
lot of the folks who we're talking to, you'll see some of them during the 3:00 p.m. hour. they're not from here. a lot of tourists in charleston. so you get a pretty good representation of the united states of america walking through city market here in charleston. so you have some folks who are big hillary clinton supporters. a lot of folks are big bernie sanders supporters. but just about everyone we talked to, we talked to more than a half dozen voters here so far, they are a taken aback how it has played out. you talk to anybody, six months ago, they probably would not have guessed that we are where we are right now on both sides of the aisle. so that's what we're seeing play out here. it's great to have it play out here. i'll tell you that, because it's mid 60s, mid 60s in charleston today, andrea mitchell, versus single digits, that's what it was in connecticut. >> you're breaking my heart. it's nice today but we had a rough couple days. thank you very much. see you soon down there, craig.
>> see you in a bit. tonight, south carolina voters will ask donald trump questions. tune in 8:00 p.m. eastern right here on msnbc. coming up, why is the clig camp nervous ahead of nevada's showdown with bernie sanders? we'll answer that question coming up next on "andrea mitchell reports." m... m... it's how i try to live... we'll answer that question coming up next on "andrea mitchell reports." gh me down. gh me down. for the nutrition you want without the calories you don't... try boost® 100 calories. each delicious snack size drink gives you... 25 vitamins and minerals and 10 grams of protein. so it's big in nutrition and small in calories. i'm not about to swim in the slow lane. stay strong. stay active with boost®. ♪ everything kids touch during cold and flu season sticks with them. make sure the germs they bring home don't stick around.
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♪ just three days to go to nevada, a new poll shows it's a virtual dead heat on the democratic side between hillary clinton and bernie sanders. it's a tightening race that has the clinton camp nervous ahead of tomorrow's telemundo town hall. mark murray is in las vegas with a preview. hey, mark. i know polls are hard to figure on caucus states, but this shows what i'm hearing from the both campaigns that this thing has really tightened. >> reporter: andrea, it is really tight right now.
of course jon ralston may be the best nevada political analyst also says it's close. i'm no longer in iowa or new hampshire, andrea. i'm outside the new york new york casino. what will be fascinating about tomorrow night's town hall is that hillary clinton and bernie sanders get to answer questions from nevada voters. we heard tons from iowa and new hampshire voters. nevada voters particularly on issues like immigration, other issues will be fascinating to watch. >> now, i was out in nevada with hillary clinton at the beginning of the campaign, particularly when she was meeting with young dreamers at a largely hispanic high school. what happened? she started out strong there. she planted her plag long before bernie sanders was on the horizon? did she let it go, not let it circle back? >> it's more about bernie sanders's momentum. he has really caught fire more than hillary clinton has collapsed in some respects. but i think pressure is on both of them. hillary clinton needs a win in
nevada to be able to have the momentum back on her side heading into south carolina in the march 1st contest. bernie sanders has pressure on him, too. if he doesn't win tonight, he allows her to have that momentum to be able to potentially run the table on south carolina in the march 1st contest. so this is a very big contest. it doesn't have the reputation that iowa caucuses do, but saturday results are going to be must watch. >> indeed and we will all be there thanks so much, mark murray. that does it for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports." see you tomorrow, mark. tomorrow on the show, we'll be live from las vegas ahead of tomorrow's night telemundo democratic town hall with hillary clinton and bernie sanders facing off moderated by chuck todd and jose diaz-ballart. before all that, chris matthews goes one on one with john kasich. we showed you a little bit of
that. it is must-see tv at "hardball" at 7:00 p.m. follow us online and on syed rizwan farook and twitter. msnbc, the place for politics. live from south carolina next. ♪ everything kids touch during cold and flu season sticks with them. make sure the germs they bring home don't stick around. use clorox disinfecting products. because no one kills germs better than clorox.
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♪ hello, i'm chris jansing from charleston, south carolina as msnbc continues its coverage of the 2016 presidential race and boy oh boy have we got ourselves a race on the republican side. just three critical days left until the republican primary here in the palmetto state and donald trump is poised to bring a seismic shift to the race for the presidency. with trump on top, cruz hit back charge today levying a challenge to the republican front-runner just a short time ago. he responded to trump campaign calls to put a new ad off the
air. cruz's message, go ahead and sue me. >> donald's lawyers sent our campaign a cease and desist letter. he says this attack ad is what he calls it is quote not only completely disingenuous but replete with lies, false defactory and destructive statements and down right fabrications. if you want to file a lawsuit challenging this ad, claiming it is defamation, file the lawsuit. >> but again, trump is on the verge of his biggest victory yet. and a trump win here would change the political world as we know it, even more than he has already. polls have consistently shown him leading here, including the latest out of cnn. that poll shows trump ahead with 38% of the vote. although, there is room for the rest of the field because nearly half of the electorate here says they've made up their minds
definitively. what does that mean for the other half? and trump, it should be no surprise to anyone, touted his lead this morning during a stop in bluffton. >> you probably saw the new polls that came out today. they've been fantastic. and one just came out in nevada where i'm aat a number that's beyond belief actually. maybe i don't even have to go there and campaign. i don't know. we're leading in the polls by a lot. we won new hampshire in a landslide. we won every single group, we won highly educated, not educated. we won women. we won young. we won men. we young old. we won virtually every group. >> a bare knuckle fight to the finish for the rest of the field with trump in the lead. boy, look at where we are. we are in city market, a historic place. we have a lot of folks, good folks have come out here. how many of you are following the presidential race closely?
yeah. and they maybe also came out because we have an incredible lineup. we have a 40-year mayor of the city who knows so much about south carolina politics. we have mark sanford, former governor now congressman from south carolina. we're going to get to you in just a second. thank you for coming in. but we also have reporters in place all across south carolina today covering this fight for the republican primary. so let's begin with ted cruz dropping a hammer on donald trump and marco rubio today. just a short time ago, he spoke to the media about both of his major rivals. while many charges and countercharges were levied against both men, including cruz daring trump to sue him over an anti--trump ad, the message is clear, cruz believes both men are liars whose record are wholly inconsistent with their message. >> when anyone points to their actual record, the response of both donald trump and marco rubio is to yell the word liar. marco rubio is behaving like donald trump with a smile.
their one hope of doing well is to make false attacks with no basis whatsoever. >> nbc's hallie jackson is in spartanberg cruz has his next event later this afternoon. boy, that press conference was something else. why did ted cruz feel the need to come out so strongly and why now? >> reporter: yeah, this was really like a scorched earth press conference, chris. you saw ted cruz just absolutely go after donald trump and pivot to go after marco rubio. i want to tell you where we are. weaver actually outside clemson university. this is the overflow crowd for ted cruz's next event. we raced here. i'll turn it around so you can see the crowd as we talk about it. he is doubling down as we head inside on this controversial -- [ inaudible ].
>> talk about how not only are they going to not stop running this ad, they are going to run this ad even more regardless of this cease and -- you heard ted cruz talk about how he would actually give the deposition himself. it was a fascinating sort of moment in time where you saw ted cruz just take the gloves off, basically throw them on the ground and then you saw him fifth over to marco rubio, slamming rubio for a number of topics, alleging that the rubio campaign also engaged in what cruz implied was some dirty politicking after iowa. you heard him say that marco rubio is donald trump with a smile. so it was a level and it was a level of rhetoric from ted cruz that we haven't heard in a while as he just absolutely unloaded, chris, on both donald trump and on marco rubio. it's really the dominant story line of the day, at least here in south carolina. >> yeah. i have to agree with you. that's the word he really unloaded on them. nbc's hallie jackson. thank you for that. katy tur is just about an
hour and a half south of us in walterboro where donald trump will hold a rally four hours from now. it really seems like the kind of rhetoric we've heard from donald trump we're now hearing from ted cruz. i don't know when in any campaign at any level i've heard the word liar used so many times. >> reporter: well, south carolina is the place where politics get nasty, get dirty and that's what we're seeing here. we might not be seeing a lot of those nasty robo calls or push polls that we saw maybe in the 2000 run, but we are seeing the candidates themselves really get down in the muck with each other, calling them liars, saying go ahead and sue me. you almost expect one of them to come out and do the classic clint eastwood line, go ahead and make my day. it's getting to that level here in south carolina. donald trump, though, has been going after cruz with visitee yol himself now for a few months especially after iowa, in new hampshire, here in south carolina again calling him a liar, saying that he is a nasty
guy that nobody likes him and accusing him of defamation for that ad supreme justice ad that ted cruz came out using donald trump's own words from back in 2000 saying he was very pro choice at that point. donald trump says, no, that is not fair. i am no longer pro choice. i've been very pro life over the past two years. you using my old words against me in that way does equal defamation. in fact, he had a lot of harsh words for ted cruz before this. take a listen to what he told thomas roberts a few moments ago and i'm sure he'll have harsher words for him when he comes to the rally. listen what he said a couple minutes ago. >> you saw what ted cruz did with ben carson and it was a big lie. ted lies. i've never seen anybody lie like him, even marco rubio said he lied. so i felt much better when he said that that way i could come
out and say it. he's not an honorable guy, but that's okay. >> reporter: we'll see what he says about this, what his response is to this. he has two rallies in south carolina tonight and as that msnbc town hall with joe and mika. this isn't the only thing donald trump has threatened a lawsuit over. he said ted cruz is defaming him and saying that ted cruz is not eligible to run for president and threatened to sue him over his canadian birth. chris? >> katy tur, thank you so much. she mentioned the town hall with donald trump with joe and mika tonight. watch that at 8:00 p.m. eastern on msnbc. let me bring in congressman sanford. what is going on in your state? >> i don't have a clue. >> really? >> it's fascinating. it's unlike anything i've ever seen before. i've run statewide six times if you count primaries, runoffs and generals. it is the likes of something i've never seen before given the degree of visitee yol and given the way in which you have liar, liar, or no, you can't run, or
i'll sue you. these are not things normally found in the campaign marketplace. >> so what do you make of ted cruz stepping up the rhetoric? is that a signal of just how much angst there is in these campaigns f they're going to make a move against donald trump, boy, they better do it quick? >> yeah. this is a cage match. couple folks enter, only one or two leaving. there are fewer train tickets leaving south carolina than the train tickets arriving here. and so, what they realize is at stake. this is an incredibly important barometer historically in what comes next in the republican nomination. i think the field -- i think it will tighten some. trump has a commanding lead. i can't imagine him maintaining the lead. i thought he had a waterloo moment when he went into 9/11 and that talk. he has defied gravity.
>> i want to talk about that so stay with us. a lot of people were shocked the way that donald trump went after george w. bush, the bush family beloved in this state. >> sure. >> and yet he doesn't seem to be paying any price for it. earlier today donald trump slammed jeb bush yet again on his low polls. quote, jeb bush just got contact lenses and got rid of the glasses. he wants to look cool. but it's far too late. 1% in nevada. nbc's peter alexander is covering the bush campaign, about 90 minutes southwest of me. peter, what kind of pressure is on the bush campaign given how high the stakes are now in south carolina? >> reporter: people have described it as do or die. they have no expectation they're going to win this state, of course. the campaign doesn't see it that way. george w. bush won it here. their priority is exceeding expectations, becoming the an -
anti-cruz and anti-trump candidate. their priority is to exceed the expectations here. i spoke privately with jeb bush on his campaign bus in between stops yesterday. he struggled to identify what state he would win but said his real priority is to exceed the expectations he said have been set really low during a rally or town hall he hosted here only a short time ago. he focussed a lot of conversation on a contrast between him and one of his chief rivals among the more traditional republicans, specifically marco rubio. take a listen. >> marco rubio is a friend of mine. he is a gifted speaker, for sure. and he said i don't have foreign policy experience. wow. coming from a guy whose office has a hard time actually saying what his accomplishments are, who says going to hearings to listen to smart people talk about things rather than actually leading, that's kind of a low blow, if you think about
it. >> and while donald trump has repeatedly sort of attacked jeb bush on all sorts of things, low energy initially now on his using contacts, not glasses, bush hasn't engaged him on that and has said repeatedly that he hosted said it's up to the voters to decide. all i can control is my campaign, how i handle myself and present to these audiences that i am a steady leader the person that you can trust on foreign policy and in that oval office and hoping that the voters when they leave will make up their mind that he is the right guy. i should say we met some people who attended the bush rally today and said it's looking increasingly south carolina is leaning trump. i said what do you do now? she said we cry. >> peter alexander following the bush campaign for us. let's bring in congressman sanford again. no one six months ago wouldn't have thought this was jeb bush all the way, south carolina.
when you look at this race and you said, you think there will be only so many tickets out of this cage match, could jeb bush grab one of them? >> he might. >> big rally with his brother. >> not many people can say, yeah, here is my brother, he happens to be former president of the united states who has a real following in south carolina. that having been said, i don't know how it goes. i think it's rubio versus bush. i think that trump and cruz are sort of in the mix in terms of fronting the jump ball. and that's why the sharp elbows will continue to come out over the next 24 hours or 48 hours or so. i think this, though, the phenomenon is it's just a bad year to be establishment. it's a bad year to have political ties or resume. i think that the voters are looking for something else right now. they're exceedingly frustrated with way washington has or hasn't worked for them and frustrated about economic opportunity and what comes next for themselves and those they love. you combine those two things you have the mix we have.
>> one thing that could change the race for second or third, nikki haley, the governor now who just held a press conference to reaffirm what i saw on theinw she is going to endorse anybody before three days from now. but she did say that donald trump is not somebody that she as a governor would want to see. talk to us as somebody who was governor, how much sway she could hold, could she impact, though, should she decide to endorse the way this race eventually comes out? >> yes, she could. she's widely -- well regarded in the state and i think the question is will somebody use political capital when they don't think that whoever they pick might win? because trump is likely going to win this thing. if that occurs, why is she going to pick somebody that she knows will come in second or third? i think that that's a tough political call and as a consequence i suspect she probably won't endorse. >> what are you going to watch
for over the next three days assuming she doesn't endorse what are you going to look for? if you're inside one other of the campaigns and you know south carolina so well, what are you saying to your candidate? >> if i'm going against trump, i'm trying to get trump throughout in his own words because people like what he's getting at. they don't like necessarily the way he is getting at it. and i think that that could be damaging. >> really, do you think so? because i have not seen any indication in anybody -- >> no, you're right. >> paying the price for this. >> the people i've gotten to know over six elections across south carolina over the years do not put up with some of the rather wild or flamboyant things he says. they may not have an informed decision. >> he is doing so well with evangelical. >> they may not have an informed opinion on megan kelly. so i thought that was going to be a waterloo moment. as i said, it has not proven to be. i don't have a real firm fix as to what breaks this thing open other than voters deciding. >> if you thought evangelicals such a huge part of the
electorate here that two corinthians might hurt him, going after george w. bush might hurt him some of his own admissions might have hurt him. >> sure. their concern over washington and their concern over economic issues ultimately trumps their view toward the way he handled these issues and eespouses them. >> congressman mark sanford, great for you to come out here on this gorgeous day in south carolina. up next, we'll turn back to more from south carolina. my guest the man who led this city where we are, charleston, for 40 years, including last summer when tragedy struck at mother emmanuel ame a few streets away from where we are sitting right now, joe riley will join me here at city market next. you're going to want to hear his insights. ♪jake reese, "day to feel alive"♪
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♪ we're back live in charleston. it's not just about the republicans, because in just over a week, democratic voters in south carolina are going to cast their ballots. now, in recent polls, hillary clinton shows a double-digit lead over bernie sanders, but the senator is drawing thousands of supporters to his rallies that he held across the state as well as obviously across the country. joining me to talk about all of this, former mayor of charleston, joe riley, 40 years on the job, few people know more about politics in this city, in this state than you do. thanks for coming in. >> it's a pleasure. good to be with you. >> you just retired. i know you're busy i was just talking to congressman sanford, he never saw anything like this. what do you make of what's happening in your state? >> well, you know, it really
more resembles a food fight than what our country needs is a thoughtful discussion of international matters and national issues. i'm a democrat, so i'm observing, but i think it's unfortunate that it seems to have degenerated into something really not worthy of responsible discussion about who will lead our country. >> as we look at the democratic side and i mentioned that double-digit lead, so far by hillary clinton, but a lot of people on the ground in south carolina tell me it's a lot closer than some of those polls would indicate. we saw what has happened in nevada where this race has narrowed to within a point. so, easily within the margin of error. how close do you think the democratic race is right now and is bernie sanders gaining? >> well, i'm not a political scientist. i served as mayor, but hillary clinton, in my opinion, has a commanding lead. the citizens of south carolina know her. she and the clintons were here
often. they are interested in the issues that face the citizens of south carolina. and, you know, this isn't an overnight kind of thing. people have formulated opinions of respect and admiration for hillary clinton in this state for years. so, i would expect that she will do very well. obviously i'm supporting her. >> you have announced that you are endorsing her. what are the chances that nikki haley jumps into? >> i have no idea. >> not going to venture a guess on that. >> no. >> what is going to make a difference? a lot of this may well be about the margins. we saw he got so much closer in one state, beat her in another state, so if he's going to continue to make some moves as he has done, for example, in nevada and if she's going to fend off those moves, what are the issues that are important? >> well, you know, i think the real issue is who can lead
america? you know, it's not just the popular or populist arguments. we have a congress and a president. we've got a more frayed international scene than any time in decades and so i think it's the person who has the ability to lead, who can work in a bipartisan fashion and help move our country forward. i really think that when people focus on that, then hillary clinton with her experience and capacities i would think would be the overwhelming favorite. >> you and a lot of other people who are in the pardon me 40 years establishment, that's the phrase that we have been using, believe that and in fact on both sides are hoping that they hope that the establishment candidates will move in, but we haven't seen any indication of that necessarily on either side.
my question to you is do you think both parties really underestimated how much the american people feel anger, discontent, fear, all those things and directed at washington? >> yeah. important thing about political campaigns is it is a learning experience. how people are feeling, what their angst are and what their aspirations are. so that's a natural part of this process. and i think certainly the issues of income disparity as well as concern and frustration about the international, you know, difficulties. but i really think that as we move closer to election day and start getting into, you know, a number of state primaries, i think that people are going to begin to more clearly focus on who can lead america. who can solve these difficult problems. i mean, you know, free college
would be wonderful. how is that going to be paid for? how are you going to get a republican congress to -- taxes are going to be raised. and so i think that it's a more sober assessment of the needs of our country, assessments that are going to develop. and i think that hillary clinton has a remarkable combination of experience. i've known her for 30 years since she was chairman of the board of children defense fund. her heart is in the right place. she's as smart as anybody i know and she's had amazing experience to bring to the office of president that broad array of experiences is remarkably. >> may i say, i don't know that you've given up your 18-hour days, so it's kind of you to come in and spend time with us. i appreciate it. >> thank you. donald trump just responded to the comments ted cruz made in
response to a cease and desist letter his campaign got from trump's attorneys. that letter demanding that a new ad be taken off the air, calling it defamatory. cruz telling trump late this morning in an incendiary news conference to, quote, file that lawsuit. trump says if i want to bring a lawsuit, it would be legitimate. like wise, if i want to bring a lawsuit regarding senator cruz being a natural born canadian, i will do so. time will tell, teddy. but what do you really think, donald trump? first, be sure to weigh in on today's pulse question. do you think donald trump will be the gop nominee if he wins south carolina? cast your vote today now at pulse.msnbc.com and we'll show the results later on in this show. we'll be right back. in new york state, we believe tomorrow starts today. all across the state the economy is growing, with creative new business incentives, and the lowest taxes in decades,
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race there in a dead heat. hillary clinton now leading bernie sanders by just one point, a dramatic reversal since october when clinton held a 16-point lead. remember it was just two days ago when clinton cancelled that trip to florida to spend an extra day in the state campaigning ahead of a caucus there on saturday. clearly her campaign had an inkling of what this new poll shows that the race in nevada has tightened significantly. meanwhile, clinton will speak any moment now, get out the vote rally in chicago where she is expected to receive the endorsement of sandra bland's mother as she and sanders battle for that critical voting block. nbc's kristen welker has been following the clinton campaign from the beginning. she joins us now from chicago. kristen a lot of analysts when they saw that new poll out of nevada their jaws dropped. i'm wondering if the clinton campaign's did as well. >> you're right, chris. this is a dramatic reversal from the numbers we saw in october.
but the clinton and sanders campaigns have been privately saying for a while now they expect the race to get a lot tighter. there's no doubt, though, the clinton campaign feeling the heat. this is a lot tighter than they would like it and they are responding in a kind. pouring millions of dollars into television ads, now outstanding senator sanders for the first time. she also added events to nevada and they are down playing expectatio expectations. but there's no doubt, chris a loss in nevada would be a big blow to secretary clinton coming off the heels of devastating loss in new hampshire. we're seeing a new focus on south carolina and for that she has courting african-american voters more aggressively than she has prior to this week. yesterday she had that big speech on race where she called for $2 billion in investments in public education. she also vowed to take on misconduct by police and she said she would work for criminal justice reform. i'm told we're going to hear her echo a lot of those comments
today and don't be surprised if she has more sharp words for senator sanders, as you know, chris, for quite some time she has been trying to paint him as a single issue candidate. she did that again yesterday and i anticipate we'll hear more of that again today. of course, senator sanders has sharply denied that and said that his policies stretch across the spectrum. senator clinton expected to take the stage here any minute now, chris. >> kristen welker, thank you for that. just a reminder, sandra bland's mother will be a guest with thomas roberts next hour on msnbc. tomorrow, we'll hold a town hall with hillary clinton and bernie sanders. that's thursday 9:00 p.m. eastern here on msnbc. i want to bring in political analyst and host of ralston live. jon ralston. it's good to see you even if it's every four years. how are you? >> good, how are you doing,
chris? >> i'm great. i mean, if you're interested in politics, it doesn't get more fascinating than this. but help us understand what's going on in nevada? why is the democratic race so close there? >> well, i think it's momentum. it's all about momentum after new hampshire. the clinton campaign immediately down played the results that they expected here in nevada. they started talking about the lack of diversity in nevada, which is the same thing they actually -- the reverse of what they had been playing up here. it's clearly a much different state than iowa and new hampshire, but the momentum here has caused sanders to invest a lot more. you heard kristen talk about the spending on tv. they're both spending a lot of money on tv. both campaigns think that this race is a dead heat as that poll showed. >> yeah. all that money is being spent on tv ads, but one of the things about this campaign is that tv ads haven't really moved the needle. it's made general managers at tv stations happy, but i'm not sure
it's done much more than that. is there any indication it's different in nevada? >> i don't think so. i think you're right about that. it's not so much about the tv messages. plus it's a caucus state, right, chris? the turnout will be relatively low to a primary state. they're expected only 70 or 80,000 voters. don't forget, there's same day registration here and about quarter of turnout in 2008 was same day registrants. so very hard to poll. nobody really knows what the turnout is going to be on saturday. that's why the clinton campaign is so nervous about a place she thought was locked up at one time. that's why there's such a pitch battle across demographics here to try to get folks out to vote. >> absolutely. one of the reasons this is so surprising is because hillary clinton seemed to do all the right things. you've written about this. she got in early. she hired a skilled operative who worked for her and worked for president obama. so you mentioned momentum. is this a year when momentum is
more important than organization? >> yeah, that's the real question, chris. you've hit the nail on the head. and it's been true with donald trump and now it's -- is it true with bernie sanders? this is a battle of organization. you mentioned emmy ruiz, there's a few other people who know what they're doing. hillary clinton was here early last spring. bernie sanders didn't even get here until october, but suddenly i think they woke up one day and said oh my goodness, we can win nevada and poured all kinds of resources in here. the momentum after new hampshire has really been something to watch here. you've seen his crowds get more diverse, more enthusiastic. a lot of young people. the real question i think about saturday is can he get a large enough turnout, millennials turning out, latinos to break more in his favor. if that happens, he's going to win here. >> wow. unbelievable. msnbc political analyst jon ralston. we'll talk to you a lot over the next several days. thanks a lot. >> you bet. still ahead, we're going to
deep dive into this question, can anything change the republican race here in south carolina? or is trump all but assured a victory. plus, the donald trump/ted cruz feud is heating up big t e time. i'll speak with two people who know the political landscape here very well. that's next. first, check out what john kasich told msnbc's chris matthews in an interview that will air later tonight. >> last thing on trump, can you imagine him as president? can you think of him up there on the stand of the west front of the cab becoming president of the united states? >> kind of hard for me to believe. >> is it? >> yeah. >> are you with president obama on that, he'll never be president? >> i just don't think -- look, chris is such -- >> he can't be president. >> that's right. i think what i believe is going to happen, little by little as the debate stage shrinks, it's not just the debate stage. that's the dumbest way to pick a president. tell me the history of the
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make sure the germs they bring home don't stick around. use clorox disinfecting products. because no one kills germs better than clorox. we're back live in south carolina. we've got an update for you on our top story, the theater war of words between ted cruz and donald trump that is exploding over the last couple of hours. trump promising he may still sue after last hour's incendiary news conference held by ted cruz. cruz calling trump a liar, daring the republican front-runner to follow through with his threat to sue over an ad that criticizes trump's record on abortion. cruz also targeted his chief opponent for second place marco rubio. cruz said rubio is behaving like trump, but quote, with a smile. despite this heated back and forth between the candidates, what, if anything, can stop or
at least slow the trump juggernaut? jeremy is a bree lance political reporter based in south carolina. gibbs knots chair at the college of charleston. thank you for coming in. you'll be teaching this for years to come, but will this back and forth make any difference here? >> i don't think so. trump is up so big in the polls. again, this has been a race where defies conventional wisdom. i expected trump to fade a long time ago and his strength seems to be getting stronger and stronger. it's very impressive and i expect him to win on saturday. >> jeremy what do you take of ted cruz taking a page from the trump play book and saying liar, liar? >> well, first of all, thanks so much for having me. and good to be on with my friend gibbs as well. i mean, yeah. like gibbs said, it doesn't feel like things are changing, but, you know, these are just polls. i do think that cruz coming out strong against trump plays really well to his supporters. i was at one of his events
yesterday and it's interesting to talk to them because they're as dismayed by trump as anyone else. it almost felt like you were talking to democratics or someone who just really appalled by trump. it's amazing to think that at some point the republican party is going to have to -- or going to want to come together. and it's hard to imagine that happening. especially given the divide between cruz supporters and trump supporters who you think would be closer than any of the other candidates. >> this doesn't seem to be, as you said professor, about getting donald trump to lose. i don't believe the campaigns think they're going to knock him off given three days left in his lead in the polls. and so this is really about second, third place, right? >> sure. >> so why go after donald trump instead of the other opponents? >> it could backfire. i think that having -- they're all trying to be that next person. they're all trying to figure out who will be the primary challenger to trump.
if the republicans can unit behind one or even just two other people, it could maybe be a challenge to trump. but right now in the six-person field, he looks very, very safe. >> how close could this get? >> you know, trump support amongst evangelicals is one of the things that blows my mind. that's really, really surprising. i would expect that from cruz, but for trump, he is also winning amongst evangelicals which are 60, 65% of gop primary voters in south carolina. so that statistic really catches my attention and shows how strong he is here in our state. >> jeremy, i want to ask both of you this but the clock is ticking for governor nikki haley if she is going to endorse a presidential candidate. she said no way, no how will it be trump, but what do you think the chances are that it could happen over the next 72 hours and what difference could it make? >> that's a great question. nikki haley has 80 or 90% approval rating or she did at least as of a month ago. so, i think that an endorsement
from her is something that a lot of candidates are going to be asking for and certainly i'm sure that there's a great deal of pressure for her to do that. that said, she recently said that she wasn't going to make that endorsement. i mean, she is in a tough spot because she basically as directly as you can as a leader in the gop party criticized trump. so how could she then turn around and sort of embrace his rhetoric. that seems hard to believe. but then again does she take the risk and back up one of the second candidates here who might lose? and so then you're back to a candidate who might lose. that's a tough spot to be in. i don't know if gibbs has any insight on what she should do. it seems like it would be tough. >> especially if she is eyeing for a vp appointment or something like that. be unlikely --
>> which is. >> a real possibility. then she ends up endorsing someone and then they end up not winning, i doubt somebody who didn't get her endorsement is going to pick her for vp. she is the most popular politician in the state right now, really universal praise for the way she handled a number of crises and tragedies including the emmanuel shooting here in charleston. that's a coveted endorsement and that could be something that would change the race in the next few days. but she's in a very difficult spot. >> professor gibbs, you're saying your students are like all over this. thank you. jeremy, thanks to you as well. gentlemen, great conversation. >> thank you. now to today's pulse question, do you think donald trump will be the gop nominee if he wince south carolina? check out the results so far. and remember, you can continue to cast your vote now at pulse.msnbc.com. we were born 100 years ago into a new american century. born with a hunger to fly and a passion to build something better.
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the president and his team take this process very seriously and understand that while there's ample time, we're beginning to move expo di shously to fulfill the president's constitutional responsibilities. that process generally has begun. where we are in that process and what the president is reviewing at this point is not something that we're going to be prepared to discuss publicly. >> that is white house press secretary josh earnest just a short time ago affirming what we heard from the president that he will indeed nominate someone to replace antonin scalia on the supreme court but also saying that he will not attend the funeral. vice president biden and his wife dr. jill biden will represent the administration at that funeral which will be held on saturday. on friday, antonin scalia's body will lie in repose in the great hall surrounded by the busts of other justices. we'll have much more on this and
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hillary clinton speaking right now at a get out the vote event after being introduced by the mother of sandra bland. clinton had some powerful words about bland and more. take a listen. >> i think we owe it to them. we owe it to them to reform police practices to make sure no other young woman like sandra bland is ever pulled out of a car for no good reason and thrown into a jail where she is found dead!
and applause ] >> that just happened. joining me now, south carolina state senator margie bright matthews. she replaced the late reverend pinckney who was one of the nine shot in the ame emanuel church last year. she is a hillary clinton supporter. thank you for being with us. >> thank you for allowing me to be here. >> bernie sanders is making a real play for the clinton administration, and i wonder if you just listened to what she had to say, can you tell us why you think she's able to make a bigger impact on african-americans than bernie sanders? >> i believe she's better prepared, because secretary clinton has been there. she has been to south carolina for the last 40 years. she started out her career here working for the underprivileged children of south carolina. she has strong roots here working in the civil rights
well as she came here -- and i think it's very important for me to point out that when senator clemente pinckney was killed, she was here. she was not here to campaign, but she was here to support the family of senator pinckney as well as all of the families of the people that were killed in the church. she's been here on other issues, she's been here to try to make sure that we have equity and housing. she's been here for south carolinans, and we want to make sure that everyone understands that she will continue to be here. >> and yet you see this tremendous disaffection with washington and the so-called establishment on both sides, which is fueling donald trump's unbelievable surge, clearly fueling, at least in part, bernie sanders' unexpectedly strong showing. he's now within a point of her in nevada. i wonder if you think in the
african-american community sandra bland's story that we just heard emotionally from secretary clinton, if what happened here in charleston at the bible study at the church, how much is that playing into how people will vote in just a few days, and can it change the equation at all? >> i don't believe that it will change the equation, especially in south carolina and throughout most of the south. because, as i said, secretary clinton has been here working. she just did not come for this election. number one, let me explain that she has been one of those proponents of making sure that we curb the violence with officers and where african-americans have been targeted and stopped wrongfully by police abuse. it just didn't start with sandra bland, it didn't just start with walter scott, and that, of course, happened in charleston. senator clinton has been here. and when you talk about the
establishment, i want people to understand that that establishment has really been senator sanders, because he's been in congress for the last 22 years. a lot of the things that he's saying that he's promising people, why hasn't there been more movement on that over the years? i want people to especially not listen to the rhetoric but listen and look at the resume of secretary clinton. >> south carolina state senator margie bright matthews, a supporter of hillary clinton, thank you. and some incredible breaking news. something that could potentially be a game changer here in south carolina. the charleston posting career now reporting that the governor, nikki hailey, who has incredible personal popularity ratings here, 85% as of a month ago, is going to endorse marco rubio today in this pitched battle for
who can challenge donald trump where he leads so significantly in this state. word is, and nbc news trying to confirm, that she will, indeed, endorse marco rubio. that's going to do it for me. i'm chris jansing. we'll have much more coming to you live from charleston, south carolina, after this. our cosmetics line was a hit. the orders were rushing in. i could feel our deadlines racing towards us. we didn't need a loan. we needed short-term funding fast.
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donald trump's lawyer apparently sent cruz a cease and desist letter ready to sue over a campaign ad. cruz? he didn't waste any time in response. >> that lawsuit will be frivolous and it will result in both donald trump and any lawyer that signs his name to the pleadings being sanctioned in court for filing a frivolous litigation. >> so donald trump responding moments ago, once again calling cruz a liar. even so his never surrender campaign through south carolina has been ferocious, and it may pay off. big time. brand new polling has teflon trump up 16 points here, plus 26 points in next up nevada, and a whopping 20 points nationally. his town hall wrapped up a short time ago, and a short question for the moderator, tell me about running for president. it took him 21 seconds to spring on the attack. we also talked to donald trump on some of the campaign's
hottest topics ahead of msnbc's exclusive town hall tonight. you'll hear what he told me coming up in a few minutes from now. but we have two newspapers telling us that the south carolina governor nikki haley is going to be endorsing and throwing herself behind senator marco rubio. our team is spread out all across the state. we have the latest for you. katie tur is here, we have peter alexander and gabe gutierrez with fresh news about this haley endorsement. katie, the cruz challenge is basically go ahead and bring it on, and donald trump's tactic has been pretty swift in saying, you know what? we just might do that. wait and see. >> reporter: it's not just that he might sue for defamation, the trump campaign is wanting to sue over his eligibility, saying his birth in canada makes him ineligible to be president.
they responded to trump's allegations. trump is arguing it is defamation with cruz saying donald trump is against abortion, but lately he has been very pro choice. he is pro choice and he supports funding of planned parenthood only if they are not performing abortio abortions. so the donald trump not taking this lightly. in the end he said, time will tell, teddy. we expect to hear more on this topic as he takes the stage here in waterborough, even tonight in sumter. but there has been an ongoing battle between these two candidates now for months, before iowa. after iowa, after that loss that donald trump had to ted cruz, you could tell it got under his skin, he was very angry about it, and he's been trying to come up with any way he can to bash, essentially, ted cruz into submission. ted cruz is proving very hard to
intimidate. the question is, will this resonate with voters in south carolina? donald trump is up by 16 points, as we said here, voters like his tell it like it is attitude, his outward status. the campaign is banking on that. they believe that's what's resonating, and that's why you see crowds thousands strong coming out to see him. they believe ted cruz is coming off not only as inauthentic but as a slimy politician, and they hope the voters will see this and eventually vote for donald trump. >> katie, we know that trump is not backing down on this criticism of jeb bush. he's been tweeting about jeb bush and the contact lenses. the tweet he sent out earlier today is jeb got contact lenses, got rid of the glasses. he wants to look cool, but it's far too late. 1% in nevada. the donald trump here in south carolina is pretty substantial, and even though jeb bush is pulling out some of the family big guns as we ramp up to
saturday with his mother coming along. but what do we expect to hear from donald trump as he starts to engage more on the donald trump trail? >> reporter: we've seen him bash ted cruz for, let's be honest, seven months. he does it every chance he gets. we haven't seen him getting on bush as hard as he has been, and that's because his campaign tells me he was getting blowback from supporters on that when they were calling and pitching donald trump, some voters out here saying they didn't necessarily like his attacks on george w. bush. so we've seen him tone that down ever so slightly. instead of calling george bush a liar or talking about impeachment as he was doing on the debate a couple days ago, right now what he was saying is the country made a mistake, that they never should have gone into iraq, which is a slightly less aggressive tone than he was
taking with george w. bush just a few days ago. but as you said, thomas, he's getting out there more. he's trying to mimic his success in new hampshire. in new hampshire we saw him doing retail stops, shaking hands with people, doing a lot more town halls, doing a lot more rallies and doing as much tv as he possibly can. that's exactly the same thing we see in south carolina. he called into your show two hours ago. he has a rally tonight and a town hall earlier. we do believe he gets directly in touch with voters and talks to people in places like diners before this state votes on saturday. >> yeah, it's a full court press ahead to secure the south. first in the south primary coming up on saturday. katie tur thanks so much. we'll go to your colleague, peter al--
>> she plans to go to chapin, south carolina. it's in lexington county. it's also the governor's district as she represented lexington county. this is a surprise, thomas. this comes as a surprise to a lot of political watchers here in south carolina. the political experts around the country as well for a variety of reasons. first of all, we knew she wasn't going to endorse donald trump, she made that abundantly clear as recently as yesterday, and of course we know that after he made those comments that were seen widely as anti-muslim sherks came out and talked about her immigrant upbringing. then of course yesterday she added to that and criticized mr. trump for some of the other things that he said. but a lot of folks did not think nikki haley would endorse him quite frankly because it's
wednesday afternoon. here we are just a few days away from the primary in south carolina. marco rubio at best right now polling a distant third. nikki haley has been mentioned by a lot of folks as someone who is on the short list for a possible vice presidential nominee pick, so to have her throw her full weight and support behind someone who likely will not win in south carolina on saturday comes as a bit of a surprise. additionally, the governor has stayed above the fray, if you will, here in south carolina for some time. of course, keep in mind you had the shooting here in charleston, you had the walter scott shooting, and the confederate flag came down. the governor enjoying a popularity here in this state that she had not seen early on in her administration, and had been enjoying that by and large because, again, she had been
seen as someone who managed to rise above the political fray here in the palmetto state, which is very hard to do. so late word this afternoon from sources very close to the governor inside the governor's office saying governor haley not just going to endorse marco rubio but plans to appear with him this evening. also hearing word that she will be appearing with him after this evening as well in campaigns across south carolina. so a stunning development here in south carolina on a sunny wednesday afternoon in charleston, thomas. >> craig, we know that haley endorsed mitt romney in 2012. newt gingrich carried the state of south carolina back in 2012. really interesting as we look at tim scott going behind marco rubio, now nikki haley. it's almost like the new guard of the republican party where we have lindsay graham going and supporting jeb bush. >> the establishment appears to be lining up here in south carolina.
it will also be interesting to see, thomas, whether this is something that moves the needle. it did not move the needle four years ago. as you know, mitt romney -- newt gingrich won the primary here four years ago. we'll see if this has any sort of measurable effect just three days out. >> certainly your profile has risen since 2012 to 2016, the challenges she has faced as governor. we're going to check with your colleague gabe gutierrez who has been following the rubio campaign. gabe, you're a few hours away frin aiken from where this town hall will take place tonight. has word started to spread about the governor? >> thomas, good afternoon. nobody here in the audience seems to know about it. it has broken in the last few minutes. his campaign is not speaking
about it. this is his second of three town halls today, and he's really going around the state trying to build this momentum, and the endorsement of nikki haley would be a significant development in that. now, he has been traveling the state with senator tim scott, really trying to peel away some of the voters, the evangelical voters from ted cruz, and now he's been locked in a war of words with ted cruz over the past few days. even this afternoon with ted cruz coming out in that news conference and essentially saying he believed that marco rubio was acting like donald trump with a smile. over the past few days, the rubio campaign has accused the cruz campaign of essentially dirty politics. they say they have been participating or been participating in robo calls, which the cruz camp denies. and also this facebook page that supposedly had trey gowdy renouncing his endorsement of cruz. that is not true. he asked what proof does he have
that he's behind all this. here's what he said. >> it's part of a pattern. they didn't say they were supporting donald trump, they didn't say they were supporting ben carson. that was just o if that was just one incident, you could say, okay, that's just one, but he said things about me with planned parenthood. >> reporter: so the war on words with ted cruz continues, but that endorsement from nikki haley expected to jolt this campaign by quite a bit. they're not getting into the expectation game saying exactly whether they hope to finish second or third in this race. but clearly they need a strong finish here in south carolina to then continue on. and they say if they get into a one-on-one matchup with donald
trump as the republican primary moves forward, they feel they can win that. again, they're looking for a strong finish in south carolina, and this endorsement is big news for the marco rubio campaign. back to you. >> gabe gutierrez there on the trail with marco rubio. gabe, thanks so much. want to go now to andy shane. andy is the political reporter who broke this story. he works for the state newspaper here in south carolina. andy, when did you get word of this or when did you start to put together all the pieces of this endorsement coming today and the timing of it? >> we've had -- we got a call from a source not too long ago informing me that governor haley was going to go ahead and endorse senator rubio and we were able to post it as soon as we got the go-ahead. >> so, andy, explain the importance of this, especially as we know her profile has risen over the years of certain challenges, whether by tragedy or mother nature here in south carolina. how is this going to help marco
rubio? >> i think it's going to be a big help for marco rubio. right now he's sitting third in the polls in south carolina, and he is gaining on ted cruz as second. they have been looking at the amount of challenge to trump and cruz moving forward, and it just looks like the momentum is going behind marco rubio in south carolina and hopefully would push him into super tuesday. governor haley is the most powerful politician we have in the state. it came off the handling of the charleston shooting. the call to take down the confederate flag at the state house, and obviously the way she conducted herself during the historic flood we had in october. it a major win for senator rubio. >> do you think senator tim scott was influential in being a broker to bridge this endorseme
endorsement? >> pretty much, if you have an r in your last name, you were talking about nominating your candidate, whether it was governor bush, senator cruz or senator rubio. certainly she's close with senator scott. she's also close with a number of folks who have backed governor bush as well. i think it all works out. if you think about it to a certain degree, she and senator rubio are the same age. they're both the children of immigran immigrants. it's sort of whether the young-capped absence as well. they're, in a way, part of the same group. >> the 40-somethings are sticking together. the new guard of the republican party, at least as we look at things come together in south carolina. andy shane with the state newspaper supporting marco rubio. andy, great to talk to you. thank you, sir. >> great. thank you for having me.
>> absolutely. so we get closer to the coast and we are tracking governor jeb bush. he's holding several town halls today to rally his support. nbc's peter alexander is covering the bush campaign for us in buford, south carolina. peter, this will have to take the wind out of some sails of governor bush who was probably hoping to get the support of a nikki haley, but it doesn't stop the events or his belief that he can have a stronger showing here. >> well, it doesn't stop it, but this is definitely wind out of the bush campaign's sails. i spoke to jeb bush prooifrtiva one on one in his campaign. this was an endorsement they had been working on for a few years. they had helped nikki haley raise money in the past couple years, they had touched on the topic of education. when i talked to him about the importance of nikki haley's endorsement in this state,
here's what he said. take a listen. >> she is probably the most meaningful endorsement. if she is going to give an endorsement, it would probably be the most meaningful one in the state. >> reporter: if you don't get one, what message does that sound? >> i have to work harder. >> reporter: i followed up and said, what happens if you don't get governor haley's endorsement, and he said it's just evidence we need to work harder. so the bush campaign is obviously working harder. they've lagged in the polls from the marine corps station-buford. i toss it back to you. i trust you can't even hear me right now. >> you did a great job dealing with that, peter alexander. thanks so much. six hours away from this msnbc town hall kicking off at 8:00 eastern tonight.
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call from donald trump during the daytime hours, but that's a first for late night. and it was during his campaign events that i had a chance to speak to donald trump. this was right after ted cruz went after him right around noon and calling on donald trump asking donald trump to sue him if he really wants him to take down that ad that's running against him. but i spoke to donald trump, who is the gop frontrunner, about whether he is still confident he will secure the gop nomination. take a listen. >> we're doing very well, but i don't even like to think of myself as the frontrunner. i just want to win it and we want to make america great again. it's as simple as that. but we are doing well. >> ted cruz, marco rubio would certainly consider you to be the frontrunner, and you are their target, ted cruz especially going after you. there was a pro-cruz commercial i saw today saying he was the only one that can defend the constitution and protect our liberty. he failed to overturn obamacare. do you think you can overturn the aca if elected? >> not only did he fail to
overturn obamacare, he appointed the judge that gave us obamacare because he was the one that pushed so hard for john roberts to be a justice of the supreme court. so ted cruz really, really did a great disservice to the people. like myself, they want to see obamacare totally redone and replaced. if you look at john roberts, he had two chances to end it. you saw what tred cruz did with ben carson. he lies. i've never seen anyone lie like him. even marco rubio said he lied. i felt much better when he said that, that way i could come out and say it. he's not an honorable guy, but that's okay. >> mr. trump, you have a town hall tonight with miko and joe on msnbc. i know you don't feel you were treated fairly at the last
debate. the term you like to use is burn grass. are you about to burn grass if you're treated unfairly? >> i don't know the term "burn grass." i'm putting up my own money. the other people are getting money from all the different industries, the pharmaceutical industry, et cetera, et cetera. all of those people were in the hall. i had no people. except for my family, i had no people in the hall because i'm not special interest, i'm not getting special interest or donor money. so i thought it was a very unfash situatiu unfair situation, and i think the rnc handled it very badly. most polls show i won the debate, and i guess based on the new polls you just told me about, i guess i didn't do badly in the debate because it seems i'm doing very well with the polls. >> donald trump is going to be sitting down with joe and mika tonight. i just want to point out i learned the burn phrase when i read the book.
can donald trump make the polls even higher after his town hall? joe and mika hosting that conversation at 8:00 p.m. also, do you think donald trump will be the gop nominee if he wins south carolina? vote now at pulse.msnbc.com. theand the kids always eat sky their vegetables.e. because the salad there is always served with the original hidden valley ranch.
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i hear you because i was there when my dad suffered with diabetic nerve pain. if you have diabetes and burning, shooting pain in your feet or hands, don't suffer in silence! step on up and ask your doctor about diabetic nerve pain. tell 'em cedric sent you. about trump, can you imagine him as president? can you imagine him on the west side of the capitol becoming president of the united states? >> it's kind of hard to believe. >> are you with president obama on that, he'll never be president? >> i just don't think -- >> he can't be president, so -- >> that's right. i think what's going to happen is i think little by little as the debate stage shrinks, and it's not just the debate stage, that's the dumbest way to get a president. go, you got 30 seconds.
i think that's ridiculous, but i think the town halls, raising money, having a positive message. i just think it's going to work. >> the town halls work for governor kasich in new hampshire, coming in second there. there we have governor kasich sitting down with chris matthews. he does predict his message is going to resonate once the gop field shrinks down. you can catch the entire interview with chris tonight at 7:00 eastern on msnbc. first i want to bring in caton dawson. you not only bring charm but you bring props. if we can get the camera -- is this my camera over here? right there? we'll do it here. ready? marco rubio, three-day, bam.
that way. see this? which way the wind blows, but whichever way it blows, nikki haley thinks it's going to take him right to the white house. so that endorsement is going to be big for him why? >> it's a big deal, and you saw in poll numbers that about half of south carolinans are going to change their mind. donald trump has a good base in the 30s. i say it shrinks to 35 or 34. a lot of people i've talked to and poll numbers i've seen have showed that about 50% are persuadable. 50% of south carolinans said they made their mind up last week. i don't think nikki haley brings a swath of votes to him, but he gets a second look. >> can we just take a look at this? this is in caton's mailbox, all the mailers that have come out. >> that's just yesterday.
>> and that's backed up from it being president's day, the holiday and all. this is a lot of cash being invested in these, and they're all pro, for or against, and paid for by different groups. this is what's littering people's boxes right now. if you think about trump as leader right now, do you think this is going to change the dynamic with nikki haley behind marco rubio to have him overtake ted cruz? >> i think he does. i do. if you look at endorsements, and sometimes with a state that -- all of our constitutional offices are republicans, a majority in the state house, a majority in the state senate. there are pockets in columbia, but when you look at the benghazi hearings, now nikki haley, a very beloved governor, she's competing with george
bush, but he's at the state, she's here. >> do you think john kasich has it right when he says once the field narrows, donald trump may punch his ticket as the winner of south carolina in advance, but it's going to get tougher for him moving into a general election and advancing through this primary? >> not until he's brought new people to our process and big crowds, but i agree with 100% john kasich. if you look at the poll that i saw, you saw donald trump and marco rubio at 44-44 if you had a heads up. the question is, when does it thin down? and debates matter. they mattered last time, they matter this time. people are gathering information, social media. but i do agree, it depends on what happened for super tuesday? we have 12 states. we ought to have it all by
preschool. >> i know you told the ap that if a candidate finishes in single digits, you know jeb bush is not polling all that well. he's having a tough time getting the support he needs, although bringing out the big guns, using his brother to stump for cash. they're pulling out all the stops, but is it really going to be that as you recall south carolina voters. >> i served for eight years for president that should have been a credible no one ma that moderates isn't fair because of a couple issues. rick perry, bobby jindal, scott
walker, chris christie, all our governors would be in it if they did. this isn't a time when they're looking for experience, and they found it in trump. they're looking at rubio or cruz who is 44, equal to president obama. i think we're getting ready to see a nominee that's going to be young versus an older nominee in the democratic party. >> changing of the guard. real quickly, though, do you think the candidate that showed up monday night in jeb bush, that look, that stance, no glasses should have been the guy that showed up about four months ago? >> yeah, and his brother should have showed up two and a half years ago. his brother should have come off and done for us what bill clinton has done for the democrats. as much as we don't like it, he's helped them support and raise money, talked about his administration. we spent eight years supporting george bush. straight ahead, hillary clinton just wrapping up an event in chicago with the mom of
sandra bland. she is the chicago area woman who was found dead in a jail cell following a traffic stop in texas. now, we'll be talking with sandra bland's mom about why she wants to support hillary clinton, why she feels confident in her for the white house. clinton and sanders are going to be on stage tomorrow night at 9:00 eastern for the telemundo town hall that happens before the caucuses. tonight's town hall is at 9:00. chris matthews is going to explore with joe and mik ara dod trump.
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that governor nikki haley will be endorsing him tonight in chapin. jeb bush is holding a similar event there on the right-hand side of your screen. that's taking place in somerville, south carolina. we're only days away out of nevada for the democratic caucus that is going to take place there. and the race? it is tighter than ever. a new cnn opinion research poll shows hillary clinton leads bernie sanders by only one point. mine while, here in south carolina, clinton holds a pretty comfortable 18-point lead over bernie sanders, and when it comes to race relations, 62% of likely democrats, primary voters in south carolina, says hillary clinton would handle that issue the best. these new poll numbers, though, they come as both democratic candidates are working harder than ever to gain support from the african-american community. on tuesday bernie sanders in multiple events in south carolina discussing issues important to the black community, like criminal justice reform. last night sanders held a packed rally at morehouse college in
atlanta. he spoke on issues affecting black students, like policing. >> you have seen the same pictures on tv as i have about local police department departments in look like they are occupying armies. we have got to demilitarize local police departments. in america, police officers should reflect the diversity of the communities they serve. >> meanwhile, we have hillary clinton on the campaign trail in chicago today where she just wrapped up a get out the vote event. chelsea clinton is also holding events today for her mom, those taking place in kansas and nebraska. i want to check in now with msnbc reporter alex-seitz-wald in -- at new york, new york on
the vegas strip. i was going to say, you're not in new york. as the numbers come out, it's a real surprise for the clinton camp and probably a pleasant surprise for sanders. >> right, thomas, a little bit warmer here than in new york. if you can believe it, this new poll is the first major poll we've had from nevada all year for several months. it reflects the messages we've been getting from both of the campaigns. everybody i talked to on the hillary clinton campaign has been really downplaying expectations, noting that nevada is not quite as diverse as people like to think it is. and everyone on the sanders campaign, very bullish. they've been pouring in staff from new hampshire to iowa. their ground operation got a little later start than hillary clinton. so they're feeling very confident right now, and this poll came out showing them just one point behind, 48-47, and they feel like they have a very good shot. key reason for that, this is a caucus, not a primary. it's a very low turnout one.
in 2008 there were about 117,000 democrats that turned out. that's only one in five registered democrats statewide. so as one sanders supporter put it to me, you could put a few thousand people, and in a tight race which it looks like this is going to be, that could be enough to tip the balance on saturday. it's true, it's all going to come down to turnout, alex. >> so all turn out to vote, but how are they characterizing why this should be so difficult for her, somebody with such experience and knows the campaign trail so well on a national front, going up against someone like bernie sanders? >> right. this is a state that clinton was ahead by more than 20 points just a few months ago. her campaign manager made his name by winning the state for clinton in 2008.
they're pointing to a number of factors. they're saying this race is always going to tighten, that the huge lead she has in the polls is never going to hold. they're pointing out it's a caucus state. even though people are putting south carolina and nevada together as very diverse states, only 20% of turnout in the state was actually latino. clinton keeping her focus on african-americans. latino does double duty for south carolina. the caucus location is not at the union, correct? >> correct. they're setting up caucus locations. that's good as they looked like they were going to go for clinton early on. >> thank you, alex.
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. i represent my father erik garner who was killed by the police department in 2014. my continuing his legacy has inspired me to join a nationwide movement. this is why i am here, and it is why i have decided to endorse senator bernie sanders. >> so there we have the daughter of erik garner. that is erica, her father being
killed by the police department. joining me now is democratic state representative from south carolina, joe neal, joe endorsing bernie sanders last month. it's good to have you here. why bernie? >> what struck me is his platform. his platform spoke to what i think is wrong in this country, the concentration of wealth, the need to deal with issues like massive conservation. we still have folks in this country without access to primary health care. i think his platform speaks to what's troubling this country in terms of wall street's role in sending jobs abroad and the concentration of wealth. >> so 62% of democratic primary voters in south carolina say hillary clinton would best handle race relations. you endorsed president obama. so why don't you think hillary clinton, who worked within his
cabinet, is someone who would be best suited to carry on the mantel of anything that president obama achieved for the last eight years. >> for me it's the question of continuing the process of change. hillary is a talented and intelligent woman, very accomplished. but i don't think she's the standard bearer for change. she is more of an insider, more of a work within the system kind of person, when what we really need, in my estimation, is a revolution of change that is deep-seated to challenge what's going on in this country. >> wasn't it a revolution when this country elected president obama? >> again, it's not over. >> so what was sparked and why would bernie sanders be the best to pick up that torch? >> because he has spoken to the need, i think, better than hillary has. and if you think about who bernie sanders is, this is a man who, back in the early 1960s, was head of the congress of racial equality in chicago.
that eventually merged into snik, the student non-violent committee. that's the reflection of commitment of a man fighting for equality. >> when it comes to having the empathy for the need and recognizing where there is a fracture in this country, what's the pragmatic approach? how is he going to get it done? >> i think what we have to look at is what this man has been able to do in his career. he's been very successful as a man. he's been very successful in the house of representatives and a u.s. senator. i think he's been able to reach across party lines and work to get things done. i think he could do it again as president, particularly with the bully pulpit at his command. >> thank you for being here. i appreciate your time. we've been asking you to weigh in on our pulse question the day, that question being, do you think donald trump will be the
gop if he wins in south carolina? let's have a look at what people are saying. 63% say yes, 37% say no. also, just a friendly reminder we have the town hall with donald trump, joe and mika moderating that interview at 8:00 eastern tonight. with my moderate to severe ulcerative colitis, the possibility of a flare was almost always on my mind. thinking about what to avoid, where to go... and how to deal with my uc.
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grabbing the attention of the millennial vote is something every candidate wants, especially in south carolina for the young, black voters. i hit the campus in south carolina to test the temperature check. >> who are you voting for and why? >> i'm voting for bernie sanders. there is so much going wrong for underprivileged youth and minoriti minorities. >> i'm voting for hillary clinton.
in our country right now it's time for a revolution. >> hillary and bernie was kind of neck and neck for me. hillary won over because she puts support on small businesses. >> i like hillary clinton becau -- bernie sanders because he's a down to earth candidate. i think he wants to sit down and talk to us and he supports republican ideas more than democratic ideas. >> when it comes to your impressions of donald trump, do you think he has added value to our political process or he's added entertainment? >> one of the things i do like about donald trump is his straightforwardness and the fact he tells what he thinks. i think that's great for the other candidates because it puts them on the hot seat. we want you to tell it like it
is. >> do you think your candidate would easily be donald trump? >> no question. >> no question. so you think bernie sanders could beat donald trump. >> oh, easily. >> why? >> donald trump versus bernie sanders, people realize the actual truth. no one is going to fall for it. he's building a wall and all that stuff. that doesn't make any sense. people see bernie sanders as a person who actually cares about the american people, and i think people will rally around that and see donald trump as entertainment, whatever he's doing to gain popularity now, is not going to work in the general election. his run is going to come to an end. >> he wants to look at policy, he wants to look at non-feasible ideas. hillary definitely wins. >> i appreciate their honesty. tonight joe and mika, the town hall with donald trump. here's a little healthy advice.
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good wednesday afternoon to you. i'm craig melvin coming to you live from the historic singing market at charleston, south carolina with msnbc's special coverage. on the 2016 campaign trail, just three critical days left before the primary in the state. just moments ago, nikki haley has jumped into the fray. nbc news has confirmed that haley, who said yesterday she might not endorse, now does plan to endorse florida senator marco rubio. rubio has emerged as the establishment's best chance to topple frontrunner donald trump. he is currently challenging ted cruz for second place here in south carolina. the announcement coming just hours after cruz let loose with both barrels on his two main opponents. for almost 30 minutes, cruz trashed the records of both
donald trump and marco rubio. neither are true conservatives, he said. rather, he had one word to describe their records as conservatives and their attacks on him as well. what word? liars. >> whenever anyone points to their actual record, the response of both donald trump and marco rubio is to yell the word "liar." marco rubio is behaving like donald trump. their one hope of doing well is to make false attacks with no basis whatsoever. >> we have our team of reporters fanned out all over south carolina covering the 2016 race. but first we have some big news to announce this hour. msnbc's rachel maddow will be sitting down for an exclusive one-on-one conversation with vice president joe biden tomorrow. she will do so in a special 8:38:300
"p.m. edition" of "the rachel maddow show." they'll be talking about the death of antonin scalia and of course the 2016 race. we know hillary clinton has been batting back bernie sanders serves. the two are neck and neck in nevada. as you'll recall, the vice president took himself out of the running in this rose garden announcement. >> unfortunately, i believe we're out of time, the time necessary to mount a winning campaign for the nomination. but while i will not be a candidate, i will not be silent. i intend to speak out clearly and forcefully to influence as much as i can where we stand as a party and where we need to go as a nation. >> we also learned in the last two hours that vice president joe biden, not president obama,
will be attending the saturday funeral of supreme court justice antonin scalia. instead the president will be paying his respects at the supreme court friday. i'm joined now on the phone by rachel maddow. rachel, always good to talk to you. i would imagine that the vice president will have, among other things, a whole heckle of a loo say about the brouhaha that has erupted over the nomination of a replacement for justice scalia. >> it was a big deal when he said that, "i will not be silent," suggesting he wanted to play a political role on the country in the next year. we haven't heard that much from him on news of day issues and current political sites, including now this absolutely mammoth fight that's going to happen over the supreme court. he had such a key role to play on the judiciary committee in the senate, establishing
basically the norms for the u.s. senate filling a supreme court seat. he's the biggest voice in the country, and i think the most influential and important voice in the country that we haven't yet heard from specifically on this issue. so i'm sort of desperate to know what he's going to say about it. i really can't predict it. >> i'm also really interested to hear what he has to say about the circus that has become the 2016 race. >> yep. >> is there a reason to think that the vice president may endorse a candidate at some point here in the near future? >> i don't know. he's never said, i'm going to stay out until the end of the race. sometimes presidents say that quite categorically. i will not make an endorsement. i don't know whether or not the vice president has made a commitment like that or if he's willing to. i think we should also expect that he's got very strong feelings about what's going on on both sides of the race. he said he wants to play a role not only in the national discussion but specifically in the direction of the democratic party. he has been willing to talk about his opinions about bernie
sanders and hillary clinton, what he sees as their strengths. so i'm hoping to draw him out a little bit more on that. certainly nobody has been able to talk to him at length about that since the democratic race got so close. a cnn poll just came out showing nevada is so close. everybody expects it to be a long, drawn-out thing. i'm really curious as to whether or not vice president biden is happy he decided not to run and whether he feels like this primary is serving the needs of the democratic party and setting the democratic party up to win in the general. >> the president has to be very reserved on these things because he is the president. vice president biden is a conservative speaker and more reserved. i'm so happy i got this opportunity to sit down with him tomorrow. >> we're very excited about this conversation. i am also very excited to hear what, if anything, joe biden
says about donald trump. >> yeah. i mean, you know, donald trump is -- he's one thing in terms of how he's doing in republican politics. he's another thing in terms of attracting people's interest to what's going on in politics. there is the reason that donald trump gets so much air time on television of all stripes, and it's because people tend to watch when he's talking. i think not necessarily because they love him, but because they don't know what he's going to say. he's unpredictable. the only other person at that sort of level of american politics who i think is as unpredictable and, therefore, i think watching at any given moment is joe biden. he and donald trump couldn't be more opposite in terms of what they're trying to do with public service, in terms of their records. but one thing they do have in common as far as personalities is they do not need a talking point, they say what they mean, and they can therefore make for a very interesting and surprising interview.
>> msnbc's rachel maddow. rachel, it will be a fascinating conversation, to say the least. thank you for your time. >> thank you. really appreciate it. >> once more, rachel with joe biden one on one at 8:00 p.m. eastern. also a town hall with bernie sanders and hillary clinton hosted by chuck todd and jose d diaz-balart. >> any reaction to the nikki haley endorsement? >> i have nothing to say right now. >> how big is this endorsement? >> this is a smart woman, marco. she's going to endorse you tonight. >> senator rubio, senator cruz also called you donald trump
with a smile. >> thank you for coming here, guys. i appreciate it. >> marco rubio not commenting on nikki haley's endorsement so far. it's set for an event tonight at chapin at 6:00. this is big for the senator. this is a big endorsement he has been seeking. he got senator tim scott a little earlier, and he's been traveling to try to shore up the vote here, trying to get voters to coalesce behind him as the candidate who can win. he's busy signing autographs here. he just finished the town hall event here in aiken. he's won several events throughout the day, and again, he has another event tonight in chapin. the big question will be how much of a difference will the endorsement make? back in 2012, she did endorse mitt romney, however, it was newt gingrich that ended up winning south carolina here.
so marco rubio has been locked in a war of words with ted cruz over the past few days. earlier today ted cruz called him donald trump with a smile. and basically ted cruz has been saying that marco rubio has been lying about his record, and marco rubio has been shooting back, however, and has been accusing the ted cruz campaign of robo calls and dirty politics. they had also accused him of a facebook page where the facebook page of trey gowdy, one of marco rubio's supporters, as i step out of the way here, that facebook page had said that trey gowdy had taken his support away from marco rubio. that was not the case, the marco rubio campaign accusing ted cruz's campaign of being behind that. the ted cruz campaign denies it. this is surely something -- this is very rough and tumble politics here in south carolina. moving into this state, the thinking was it was going to be jeb bush versus marco rubio.
certainly, the jeb bush campaign has been attacking marco rubio with what critics say is his lack of experience. the past few days it's been ted cruz versus marco rubio. we have spoken with several voters here at the town hall. they said they are trying to decide between rubio and several other candidates. the supporters here feel he is best positioned to take on donald trump. big question right now is what effect does this ep dorsment of nikki haley have? again, you just watched the senator pull away here. my guess is they want to preempt the announcement coming at 6:00 tonight. >> while you catch your breath for just a moment, i want to re-rack that video. gabe gutierrez, not just a pretty face in aiken, south carolina. it takes a very special, get
right behind a florida senator, ask a few questions. gabe gutierrez, a very impressive live report there in aiken, south carolina with marco rubio. gabe, thanks as always, my friend. good to see you. we'll let you get moving. >> name horne, state representative that represents the state of somerville. y you, may i remind you you're a candidate for congress. let's start with the news of the day, this nick endorsement here, how surprised were you to learn that the governor had decide she may or may not the governor.
this could mean a big boost for rubio in his polling. literally every single poll we've seen over the past. . why would i popular governor who is likely on the short list for a number two. why would she debacle a guy who has no chance of winning on saturday. >> i expect that donald trump will win south carolina saturday. in talking to foeters ls a sense of frustration within primary voters that our country is not.
when i go out and talk to the voters, people are frustrated, scared about you're hearing come fr from. i would ask you, you represent an area that is largely evangelical, you have a lot of snowbirds, but u a lot of veterans as well. donald trump, john mccain. he spent the better part of last week talking about the disaster of a war that we had in iraq. he has spent a fair amount of time saying things in rallies that you can't say with. even. again, by some measures a 2-1
margin. how is he doing so well in a palmetto state. and to the extent that bernie sanders is r and they talk about being the anti-establishment campaign. i know a lot of pundits have tri tried, and donald trump is surging ahead of bush, rubio and cruz. it's just an amazing political, display, and thank you for
letting me answer that part. al l aa aal -- hallie jackso with ted cruz. >> what happened with ted cruz? >> he had props, he had a video. he spoke for a full hour, hitting on marcs he tramd until a. i also, that's why we're currently in transit out here. clinton over to talk about his next event. he said to me, donald trump and marco rubio said ted cruz is a liar, but that's not the race.
for cruz cruz, marco rubio's, so cruz is hoping to do something to stand out a lgt bit in south carolina, and the way he did, for example, in iowa, there was a successful strategy for him, too. i'm driving the car here, he's just put that on the front of your shirt. i have to tell you, i feel a little like a. we're just hanging out in the car. >> d.c.'s halley. i've been at a coffee place in spartanburg and i never had a cell phone like the one you have
now. . hallie jackson in the car, on the road fouts. nbc's. she is in waltonburg, south carolina. thaet when. the firebombs being tossed from ted cruz there in the upstate. any response from the trump campaign so far to either one of those things? >> so far the trump campaign has not responded to the nikki haley endorsement. i believe they're taping an interview right now so they haven't responded to any breaking news in the past hour. i don't think they're going to be surprised, and i don't think they're going to be too disturbed by it. donald trump has not been a big fan of nikki haley, and a lot of his remarks, he's criticized her.
that she does not agree with donald trump's rhett i can. so this is. they're still leading by 16 points in this state, according to the. but the campaign does say they feel. they still drop, record crowns. folks are still walking up to this event. still a couple hours before it begins. they're waiting to go and see donald trump. they believe raall of that suppt is real, and they believe those are the folks that will turn out on saturday and vote for donald trump. >> katie tur for us following the trump campaign in walterborough. katie, don't forget to attend
msnbc's. up next, some powerful words frr on the the campaign trail invoking names. >> you all went to them topulle out of a car for no good reason and thrown into a jail where she is found dead! to folks out there whose diabetic nerve pain... shoots and burns its way into your day, i hear you. to everyone with this pain that makes ordinary tasks extraordinarily painful, i hear you. make sure your doctor hears you too! i hear you because i was there when my dad suffered with diabetic nerve pain. if you have diabetes and burning, shooting pain
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i think we owe it to them. we owe it to them to reform police practices, to make sure no other woman like sandra bland is pulled out of a car for no good reason and thrown into a jail where she is found dead! [ cheers and applause ] >> we owe it to the families of young men like mcquan mcdonald. [ cheers and applause ] >> and the other names that we know all too well. walter scott, freddie gray, tamir rice. so many others. >> former secretary of state hillary clinton there just a few moments ago at a get out the vote rally in chicago, illinois. clinton was endorsed by sandra bland's mother, and as you heard, talked about some of the other names we have heard over the last year who have lost
their lives in situations with police. all of this coming as hillary clinton and bernie sanders are in a high stakes battle for the support of black voters. a very crucial voting block ahead of next week, next weekend's south carolina primary, but a brand new poll out shows sanders still has a lot of work to do, a lot of ground to make up when it comes to the black vote. you can see there, 65% to 28%. we're joined by the pastor of charity missionary baptist church, vice president of action network. always good to see you. >> always good to see you, craig. >> thank you for being with me in charleston. let's talk about what we're seeing play out on a national level in the palmetto state. hillary clinton leading 2 to 1 against bernie sanders.
as we know, at least 70% of voters in the primary state. are you feeling a gap with voters? >> not really. i think bernie has done better and made a lot of ground than people thought he would when he got started. he was a great guy. we loved him a lot. he raises political issues, as does the former secretary of state, but from 2008 to now, hillary has been running in terms of how were you perceived in our community? . but a lot of black americans. with a essence and the black women forum, and they're going to deal with this issue of the
black woman's vote. i don't think enough attention is being paid to that. >> you think that particular road is being taken for granted here? >> i think it's not only taken for granted, i think it's not well understood. for example, you made the evangelical example. i would have to say, which evangelicals are you talking about? so when you say why evangelicals but not them? you would say this evangelical vote is going for cruz orla teen oes. plaque people would be talking about who is god's vote. black people invite the way other rates do. this frustration that folks have about the governor or.
. they run it. they're in charge. >> but they don't have the white house. >> okay. they got the congress. they're the governor. they shut the governor down. they didn't. >> when you hear hillary clinton in chicago as we played that song off the top, it helped in folk robert scott who was shot dead by a police officer. . we've been saying this for over a year. . we came back and addressed all the issues after the video came out while it was in new york. bernie spoke that day and i had to come back. he's been raising this issue. it's a strong issue for the former secretary to raise, it's valid. it resonates with our community. >> but it sounds like you think she's late to the party.
thapz -- i think she's sincere, bin binge. i think her lead will be in seizure mountable, but time will tell. rememb remember. i don't think iowa is south carolina, but just you. i think the numbers will be closer than that, but i hope the black voter is not taken for granted, not looked over, and not tuna meat. the republican party has been anti-everything about justice and turn around the next day and ask me to vote for you.
>> thank you for being here. an ageless wonder. a grandfather at 70. you can't tell it. a reminder tonight, chris matthews going one on one with ohio governor john kasich be, "hardball." that trump town hall with joe and msnbc, the place for politics m. soft, chewable, calcium plus vitamin d. only from citracal.
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speaking earlier with my colleague thomas roberts condemning what trump says is a pattern of lies. cruz calling trump a liar, daring trump to sue him over that ad that is now running in every south carolina mini market about trump's previous statements on abortion. all of this happening on the same day when south carolina's popular governor nikki haley has endorsed the man who is shaping up to be the establishment's best bet to beat donald trump, fo florida senator marco rubio. tru donald trump will be holding a rally tonight in sumter. has anyone talked about nikki haley endorsing marco rubio? >> i'll talk to people about it.
donald trump is going to speak at 7:00, but i want to ask you a different question, first of all. nikki haley is going to be endorsing, and she's not going to be endorsing donald trump, she's likely going to be endorsing marco rubio. what do you think as a south carolina voter? >> that she's endorsing marco rubio? >> yeah. >> she can make any decision she wants to make on who she wants to endorse. >> how does it influence you? >> it doesn't influence me one bit. no celebrity, no politician, no news media influences my vote. >> okay. thank you very much. i'll let you get back in line. she's been here since 3:15 and you can see the line is really long here. a lot of people are waiting. it's not unusual at a donald trump event to see people line up like this. here we have some nice weather. let's walk over and talk to this gentleman. let me ask you a question. nikki haley is going to be endorsing marco rubio. how does that impact you as a south carolina resident?
>> well, i don't agree with that, but that's her choice. i wouldn't endorse marco rubio at all. >> reporter: does that change your feeling about the governor here? >> yes. >> reporter: and how so? >> well, if she runs for another public office, she won't be getting my vote. >> reporter: simply on an endorsement? >> that's true. >> reporter: okay, thank you very much. let me talk to you, if i may. i want to read a tweet to you today, and the tweet is jeb bush just got contact lenses and got rid of the glasses. he wants to look cool, but it's far too late. does that sound like presidential election -- >> no, it doesn't. not to me. >> reporter: that was donald trump. >> donald trump -- >> reporter: he tweeted it. >> he tweeted that out? no, it's immature. he wasn't wearing glasses. i noticed he wasn't wearing glasses on the air a couple of times, and i was wondering. he looked different.
>> reporter: what does that tell you about the tenor of the campaign, though, when donald trump is tweeting that out. do you feel the tenor of the campaign has changed in years past? >> no. donald trump is donald trump and i love him. >> reporter: even though you disagree with what he tweeted? >> he's going to say what he has on his mind. people don't like that, but we need somebody like that. >> thank you very much. we can see the voters here -- look at this line. it goes all the way up there and it heads back the other direction that way. at the civic center here today, i'm not sure what the capacity is going to be, but if it's any indication of the past trump events i've been to, there will be some standing room only here and maybe some people who can't even get in. >> kerry sanders there in sumter, south carolina. kerry, i would contend the interaction you just had with the female voter that read the tweet, that was emblematic of a