tv MSNBC Live With Tamron Hall MSNBC February 23, 2016 8:00am-9:01am PST
live from charleston, south carolina, ahead of this state's democratic primary on saturday. we are in the heart of the city market here in charleston. this as republicans also get set for a big day today. the caucuses out in nevada. but we begin with breaking news we have been following for over an hour from the white house where president obama just announced he has sent a detailed plan this morning to congress to close the controversial u.s. military prison at guantanamo bay, cuba. something he promised to do when he was first elected. it sets up a showdown with congress. as well as republican candidates and some democrats alike who voted overwhelmingly to block the president's plans which call for transferring the remaining inmates add the maximum security prison in the united states including possibly a site right here about 20 minutes away from where we are in south carolina. the naval consolidated brig of charleston. >> for many years, it's been clear that the detention facility at guantanamo bay does
not advance our national security. it undermines it. this is not just my opinion. this is the opinion of experts. this is the opinion of many in our military. it's counterproductive to our fight against terrorists because they use it as propaganda in their efforts to recruit. this is about closing a chapter in our history. it reflects the lessons we have learned since 9/11. >> nbc's ron allen is live for us this morning at the white house. and ron, you can already bet there's been heated rhetoric from the campaign trail, and we'll get into that in a empty, but the president started his remarks this morning noting at one point there was actual bipartisan support to close this prison at guantanamo bay. >> exactly, but that was a long time ago, tamron. he talked about the campaign trail. he talked about some support from the democratic side, but things have clearly changed over the past number of years. it was very forceful statement
because this is clearly something that president obama feels very, very strongly about. he said, for example, he has spent countless hours with world leaders, our allies, trying to justify the prison. they want it closed. he talked about how it harms our image overseas, how it's used as a propaganda tool by terrorists, the orange jumpsuit pictures seen on isis propaganda material. he also said that it just costs too much. $450 million a year to run a prison that essentially houses now less than 100 detainees. a lot of arguments against it. and you're right, he talked about how things were different some time ago. here's what he said about how the partisanship on this issue has changed. >> when i first ran for president, it was widely recognized that this facility needed to close. this was not just my opinion. this was not some radical, far left view. there was a bipartisan support to close it.
my predecessor, president bush, to his credit, said he wanted to close it. it was one of the few things that i and my republican opponent, senator john mccain, agreed on. and so in one of my first acts as president, i took action to begin closing it. >> well, in response today, senate majority leader mitch mcconnell has come out as has speaker paul ryan with straightforward statements, this is not going to happen. speaker ryan called it a campaign promise, as obama is trying to fulfill. a lot of opposition to this. unclear what the president's next step is. he tried to lay out what he would probably argue is a commonsense argument for closing this chapter, this prison, because it's become such a blemish on the nation and not contributing to our national security. but again, the question now is whether he will use his
executive authority to do this, something that congress has said he can't do. >> and ron, you bring up senator mitch mcconnell. his point exactly is that under the attorney general recently confirming even this would be illegal, the transferring of prisoners here in the united states, so it goes beyond rhetoric, opinion, a sense of fear, perhaps, with some communities. mitch mcconnell making the point that it is illegal to transfer these prisoners. >> it is. there have been several laws passed by congress that make it illegal to bring these detainees on u.s. soil. the question is whether the president will challenge those laws saying as commander in chief he has to do what he can to keep the nation secure and moving these detainees to one of these 13 locations that they have not disclosed details about, the president would argue is in a national security interest. unclear whether that will happen, when this will get to court. but it's clear now that the president essentially, the administration is trying to reach out to gredz and saying
here's a plan. let's discuss it. let's try to be reasonable about this. but the opposition has just said no from the start. so it seems the president, if he wants to get this done, and he sure seems determined to do it, he may have to try executive action, which certainly will meet opposition in the courts. tamron. >> all right, ron, thank you. let's go straight to chief pentagon correspondent, jim miklaszewski. it's interesting, mick, one of the sites under review right near us, maybe a 20 minute drive, the charleston navy brig, it's been reviewed in the past. we know the backlash when different sites have been brought up in the past, including illinois, the home state of president obama. that this is also about public sentiment. president making the point, he has the support of some of the military leadership who in the past have expressed they wanted to see this facility closed. >> we learned for the first time today there were 13 separate
facilities, some military, some state or federal prisons, that were under consideration for possible place to transfer detainees from gitmo to the u.s. and while many of those state and federal facilities face some of that stiff political opposition that you talked aboutern one of the new things today in the president's plan or at least according to administration officials who briefed reporters about the plan, is they're now considering the possibility of actually building a detention facility on a military base. now, that may in some sense relieve the kind of political and security anxiety that many feel if there was a detention facility housing these -- well, war prisoners, essentially. some consider terrorists, to a place in the united states. and also, there was, for the first time, we heard the figure of 475, up to $475 million to
build a detention facility in the u.s. but according to the president, that we heard today, that would still release -- still reduce the annual cost of that detention facility by $80 million a year as opposed to what's going on at gitmo. people here don't have much confidence, however, that this plan is ever going to get off the ground. we have to remind everybody that today, the plan was sent up to capitol hill because that was the deadline set by congress. >> right, and we'll talk about the challenges with pete williams in a second. i do want to go back to what we have learned about the possible sites. as i mentioned in charleston, south carolina, the navy built the brig for a navals weapons station. it's already there. it's in tact. it's been reviewed. if this is to move forward, rather than building a new facility, what do you see is the likelihood if this is again to
move forward, with all of the complexities, as a location like this not far from where we are? >> well, given the conversation that we heard today and the briefing we got from administration officials, and a sense that we have had over the past year or so, that many of these locations, which were under consideration, like charleston, have been taken off the charts. only because of that intense political observation, that they would encounter there. if indeed it ever happens at all, tamron. >> mick, thank you. and nbc justice correspondent petiue williams is live for us. i think we can't say if enough in all of the caveats that go along with it. with that said, executive action. let's talk about how the pretdz can move forward on this without congress. >> sure, that's easy. he can't. it's against the law. and he has acknowledged it. that's why it hasn't happened so far. so that's why they sent this plan to congress. they need, if guantanamo bay
detainees are going to be brought to the u.s., they need congress to change the law. congress doesn't show any intention of wanting to do that. and that's why everybody is saying that this is, you know, going to be extremely hard to achieve because congress doesn't want to let it happen. remember, early on in the obama administration, the administration's plan was, the justice department's plan was to bring some of the worst of the worst detainees, the 9/11 plotters, to new york to face trial in civilian court. other detainees were going to be brought to a federal prison in illinois, and congress said no way. and began to pass these laws that have been renewed every year that make it illegal to bring anybody who has been held in guantanamo bay to the u.s. one person from guantanamo bay managed to slip in just before that law took effect, to my recollection, i think there's been one, and that law in effect has banned it. this isn't anything the administration can do on its own. that's why they need
congressional approval, which it doesn't appear they'll get. >> when you factor in the fact we're in a heated campaign right now. already, republican candidates from donald trump, marco rubio, ted cruz, the three leaders at this point, all saying not only do they want to keep kwguantana b bay, they want to expand it on the other side. bernie sanders and hillary clinton supporting some ideas from the president. when you look at where we are in the campaign season, that adds to exactly what you have said, if it rests with congress, it seems as if there's a big stop sign in front of this. >> it certainly doesn't make it easier for the administration, that's right. but the congressional opposition has been pretty intense so far. a couple things to note. one is that the president did say in his remarks, it's not in the plan, apparently, that went up to congress, is he was considering changes in the military commissions. those are what are now being used in guantanamo bay to put the detainees there on trial. they are going, some of them are in the process, very slow process, of going on trial before a military commission.
he's talking about changing that, if he does do that, then presumably, that could take effect already for the detainees as they remain in guantanamo bay. we'll have to see the details on that. >> all right, pete, thank you very much. let me bring in nbc news foreign correspondent amyman mohyeldin. he's standing by. they note that guantanamo bay continues to be something that's propped up by terrorists as an example of why they believe this country should be taken down. talk to us a little bit about the influence of guantanamo bay in the recruitment of terrorists. >> there's no doubt about it. you heard the president allude to it because the perspective of american values and standards. not only is it used as a recruiting tool from terrorist groups. it's always caused a sense of tension between the united states and some of its allies. you heard the president talk about how it's constantly brought up between meetings of world leaders and himself, and sometimes specific cases.
what we have seen in the past, a lot of teams in the recruitment videos put out by groups such as isis and al qaeda, you see the images that are drawn up from guantanamo, individuals, captives, hostages. held in orange jumpsuits in many times similar positions seen in guantanamo bay with detainees with hands behind backs. more importantly, it's used as a toll to showcase how the detainees, in the most case, muslims treated by americans at the facilities, play to those emotions in the recruitment videos. it's something that u.s. intelligence officials have been aware of, u.s. military officials have been aware of for some time. >> and by the numbers, we're looking at about 90, 91, but just under 100 inmates there. of those, how many were involved in the terror attacks against this country, 9/11, and do we know a lot more about these individuals if they are to
proceed through some courts? >> well, we know that among those that the united states are holding, ten are considered too dangerous to be released. certainly, among those, two very prominent individuals in terms of terrorist activities. they include khalid shaikh mohammed, considered to be the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, as well as ramsey binalshibh. those two individuals brought to guantanamo about 2007 after they had been arrested overseas, and since then, they have been detained in that facility. we also know that there are 46 individuals who are facing criminal charges or those military commissions that pete williams was alluding to. we know there are about 35 that are eligible for transfer, but one of the issues that critics of shutting down guantanamo bay consistently bring up is the concern that they have that individuals who have been released may return to the battlefield. not too long ago, the national intelligent estimate here in the
united states concluded that about 116 individuals or about 18% of those that had been rounded up and held in guantanamo bay returned to the battlefield of some sort, meaning they picked up arms and returned to terrorist activities against the united states. proponents of shutting down gitmo will tell you also there have been rampant cases of abuse and torture. we have heard that from detainees released back to their home countries. they say they were mistreated. a lot of human rights organizations have cited the mistreatment of detainees. this is an issue that is polarizing on both sides of the divide with, you know, still a long fight ahead for the president to try to shut it down. >> all right, thank you very much. and coming up, how will the president's announcement on the plan to close gitmo impact today's or tonight's republican caucuses? we're already hearing from the front-runner, donald trump, as well as senator marco rubio and senator ted cruz. this all, of course, also comes ahead of saturday's democratic
primary here in south carolina. both bernie sanders and hillary clinton will be in this state this evening. and later, we'll get reaction from several of the campaign trails, and a story that's being buzzed about, who did donald trump say he wanted to punch at a rally yesterday? you're looking live at las vegas, where senator marco rubio is holding a campaign rally. you're watching msnbc, the place for politics. beyond natural grain free pet food
and neither party does anything about it. so you have a right to be frustrated. here's the problem, no, frustration is not a plan. being angry is not a plan. it doesn't solve the problem. it may motivate you to take action, but that alone will not solve the problem. so this election can't just be about making a point. it can't just be about electing the loudest person in the room because that alone will not solve the problem. >> marco rubio now talking about anger on the campaign trail, but i want to play what he said just moments before this, regarding the guantanamo plan announced by the president. let's go back to that sound. >> this makes no sense to me. number one, we're not giving back an important naval base to an anti-american communist dictatorship. and number two, we're not going to close guantanamo, in fact, we shouldn't be releasing the people that are there now. they are enemy combatants.
these are literally enemy combat wants, incescent, soldiers, terrorists of foreign terrorist organizations. many of whom as soon as you release thement, they rejoin the fight against them. when i'm president, if we capture a tear rstz alive, they're not getting a court hearing in manhattan. they're not going to be sent to nevada. they're going to guantanamo, and we're going to find out everything they know. >> marco rubio responding to the president's gitmo plan. that's the breaking news of the hour. president obama announcing that last-ditch effort before he leaves office, that is a campaign promise he made. all of the gop presidential candidates oppose such a plan. of course, this comes as republican voters in nevada get set to caucus later this evening. beginning in less than nine hours. donald trump, ted cruz, and ben carson will also hold rallies in nevada today, while john kasich, interesting, is campaigning in georgia, one of the states
holding super tuesday contests a week from today. joining me live now, "washington post" national political reporter robert costa, who is also an msnbc political analyst. so listen, robert, as it stands now, pretty much what we expect. republican candidates on the same side as it relates to guantanamo bay. democratic candidates on a separate side. this is what will play out as a big battle setting the stage for the general election. it also factors into the natural fear that stalled this plan in the first place, referenced by the president earlier this morning. >> it's very true, tamron. what we're looking at is an upcoming republican debate on thursday. that's ahead of super tuesday on march 1st. because of the way the president has handled this, he has pushed forward national security in guantanamo bay to the center of the republican presidential race. this is for a while now, at least with the gop base, seemed to have benefitted donald trump because he has been projecting a proposal to expand guantanamo
bay. but i think you can expect to see similarly aggressive positions from other rivals. >> and that's what makes me pivot to the general election here, with the president announcing this plan, already seeing very strong words from senator mitch mcconnell. when you start looking at some of the key states later on in an election, whoever the matchup is between, one will be a republican who doesn't support the plan, and one will be a democrat who does support some form of it. in colorado, for example, i'll just throw that state out, this could be problematic for the democratic nominee. >> it could be. we'll have to see. what is so fascinating about this debate is how regional it is. if states are concerned about having some prisoners come to their areas, then you see voters really concerned. in other states where it's not an issue with prisoners potentially coming there, it's not really talked about. national security in a way we haven't seen it before, terrorism, how the united states deals with enemy combatants is at the front of the debate in a way it hasn't been for the past
year. >> and it gives these gop candidates, as you mentioned, an opportunity during this next debate to prop up their voice of strength and power which has greatly benefitted donald trump. i want to play an interesting moment from trump's rally yesterday. there were several protesters, one from a vietnam vets organization, i should say, and a couple unidentified protesters. one was described as someone who really caught the attention of donald trump and angered him. let's play what happened. >> bye-bye. good job, fella. look, he's smiling. see, he's having a good time. honestly, i hate to see that. here's a guy throwing punches, nasty as hell, screaming at everything else when we're talking. and walking out, and we're not allowed -- the guards are very gentle with him. he's walking out, big high fives, smiling, laughing. i would like to punch him in the face. >> from the page of give the people what they want.
you know, it is interesting to see this being said. ben carson was on with thomas roberts this morning. he says when someone says a line like that, it shows that they're weak. donald trump is strong, winning in the polling, 10 of the 14 super tuesday states. >> trump is certainly pugnacious and provocative. and that clip i think really zeros in on what is going to be a question for him moving forward. his temperament has connected with many in the republican party. they see his positions on trade favorable to conservatives. they also like the way he seems to come across as a fighter. in a general election, if you're looking at places in the rust belt, suburbs of philadelphia, does the temperament play? democrats don't think it will. >> remember the good old days when temperament seems toimater, in the john mccain, people were questioning his temper; and now, i don't think that happens very much anymore. we'll see, robert. i don't know. thank you. coming up, republicans, donald trump, marco rubio, and ted cruz, have all called to
keep the prison at guantanamo bay open. we know that. we have said that a couple times. up next, i'll talk live with their supporters. one from the rubio camp, one from the cruz campaign. how do they react to some of the dollar figures, some of the numbers presented from the president, putting american taxpayers on the hook for a sizable amount of money to keep the prison open. ve 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 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.
we are monitoring senator marco rubio's campaign event this hour in las vegas, nevada. moments ago, he strongly expressed opposition to president obama's plan to close guantanamo bay. >> you wake up this morning to the news that the president is planning to close guantanamo, maybe even giving it back to the cuban government. this makes no sense to me. number one, we're not giving back an important naval base to an anti-american communist dictatorship.
and number two, we're not going to close -- >> senator rubio, whose parents came from cuba, has made keeping guantanamo open one of the cornerstones of his campaign. he also visited the facility back in 2012 as a freshman senator. let me bring in wisconsin congressman sean duffy, he's endorsed marco rubio in the republican race. and will campaign with him later today in minnesota. a state that will vote on super tuesday. and i think we also at the same time will bring in our ted cruz supporter as well, former south carolina attorney general -- we'll bring them in one at a time, i'm told. we don't want cross fire type of situation. not comfortable for afternoon television. congressman duffy, let me bring you in on this. senator rubio now expressing, i think, what would be expected. but it does boil down to gop and who they believe. who has the credibility in the eyes of the voters, and when you
look at some of the exiting polling out of south carolina, when you look at terrorism and defense, donald trump leads senator rubio. he leads the field there. so yes, they're all saying similar things about guantanamo bay, but it appears the electorate believes that it's donald trump who can follow through. >> but as the american voter listens to the plans that are put out by both sides, listen to the debates, they realize that donald trump makes a lot of pretty comments and bold comments, but when there's follow-up, he doesn't have a lot of meat on the bone in regard to his policies. he doesn't understand foreign policy, where you look at marco rubio, he gets it. he understands foreign policy. you have to understand it if you're going to craft a strategy to defeat it. the radical elements in the middle east. i think marco and foreign policy, this only benefits him as the race goes on. and if you look at south carolina, marco did incredibly well. he beat ted cruz. he's a catholic in an
evangelical state of south carolina. now he gets to move to more fertile ground for him in nevada where he's a catholic, hispanic, he's going to probably win a large majority of the mormon vote. so i think things are looking up in the momentum is on marco's side. what's happened with the president's announcement on gitmo, that only helps the republican energy which we have seen has been tremendous in the primaries and caucuses and seen a lower lamer turnout on the democratic side. >> the energy you referred to is not because of your candidate. they're the tens of thousands who are showing up for donald trump rallies, and early on to support ted cruz. when you look at the numbers out of iowa, the caucuses, a record number because of ted cruz followed closely by donald trump. >> but it's for all the republican candidates, and the lack of turnout on the democratic side is because of hillary clinton who doesn't muster much energy on either side of the aisle. going back to gitmo, tamron,
it's important to note that this energized the republican base. you're going to close gitmo and think that's going to keep america safe, that that's going to stop the terrorists from recruiting and trying to take more territory is foolhardy. >> that's what george bush said, who was defended by marco rubio on stage against donald trump. that's what george w. bush wanted to do. he wanted to close gitmo. >> that's not what he wanted to do. he didn't want to close gitmo and send them to facilities in the united states. american prisons. by the way, tamron, if they go to a u.s. prison, what colored jumpsuits are they going to wear? probably orange. the lines that are used by terrorists will not end. the president, if he wants to capitulate, he can surrender the united states of america, he'll get peace, they'll take us over, but most americans want to fight for our ideas and principles and project strent in the world. this is just more weakness, whether you're closing guantanamo bay or going on your
apology tour, bowing to foreign leaders, this doesn't work. america is not safer after seven years of barack obama. it's more dangerous. so i think republicans are talking about how you make america safe again, and part is not closing gitmo. >> you referenced portraying strength and power. it is portraying confidence when your candidate is playing for second in just about every state? we have not seen him challenge donald trump yet. so if we're talking about the projection of power, why not go after the front-runner, and why are you still at this point playing for second, including in nevada, where you named a number of reasons that senator rubio should be playing for something a little bit better than second place, and he very may well lose his home state of florida. is he playing with the same strength you claim the president of the united states currently is not? in his campaign. >> we're talking about politics versus policy. on the politic front, when you
referenced, marco rubio, if you look at the consolidation of the republican field, as it consolidates, marco gets stronger. as people look at -- >> but it's not consolidating. >> let me finish. they know that cruz is not honest, not trustworthy. he'll lie, cheat, and steal to get votes. that's not very conservative, and you're seeing even ted cruz supporters move toward marco rubio. we see that donald trump has a cap of 35% to 42%, as the field consolidates, marco is the eventual winner of that, and as the game plays out, we see marco winning the nomination. if you look at the message, the hopeful american message that talks about people, how you lift them up, how you offer more opportunity and better paying jobs, that's the marco rubio message that america needs right now. and he's giving it well. >> congressman sean duffy, thank you so much for joining us from the great state of wisconsin. let's turn now to a place that's like my second home these days, south carolina. minnesota, i'm sorry, ted cruz supporting from south carolina, attorney general charlie condon. thank you so much.
for joining us here. you were listening to congressman duffy, and each time he said something, i felt like you wanted to leap off the screen. he's in minnesota. and you're here. >> my word. he must have some really bad case of potomac fever. by the way, welcome to my hometown of charleston. you asked the right question. senator rubio has no path to the nominati nomination. he cannot be the republican nominee, simple math. if you look at whats happening right now, the only candidate who has beaten donald trump would be senator cruz. he beat him in iowa. if you look at the states coming up, to actually be the nominee, you have to win states. and senator rubio is looked at possibly talking about winning florida, which is two weeks from now, but by the time florida votes, 65% of the delegates would have been chosen. >> let's talk about your candidate, though. it's easy to pivot to the problems of senator rubio, but senator cruz has his own set of
problems. looking at some new polling out of his home state of texas, important, what he crawled the crown jewel. i believe he's only up single digits, around three or four points. why is he not leading by a more sizable amount amongst the voter whose know him best, in texas? >> fair enough, but if you look at florida, senator rubio, what is he down, 50 points? some ridiculous number. if you look at the elections coming up and the path to winning the nomination, the only alternative to donald trump, which i believe is a strong majority of republican voters who want an alternative, it's ted cruz. let's talk about texas, for example. if you look at the polling data right now, of all -- and it's by the way, it's the second largest state in the union. it has 10% of our delegates towards the republican nomination. senator cruz is leading. he's leading. and if you look at the other states that will be voting this coming tuesday, arkansas, georgia, oklahoma, he's got a path.
so i do believe much like the congressman does, there will be a consolidation. but he's wrong about senator rubio. there's no path there. the path towards consolidation is senator cruz. >> donald trump is already swiping at senator cruz, again, not that that's new, wow, is ted cruz disloyal to his very capable director of communication. he uses him as a scapegoat, fired like a dog, referring to the fact that yesterday, the national spokesperson, rick tyler, was asked to resign after posting a story on the internet appearing to show senator marco rubio insulting the bible. it was a farce. it did not happen. there was also an image earlier last week of senator rubio shaking hands with barack obama. that was not an incident that happened. that was a mocked up photo shop picture. and out of iowa, which donald trump brings up at every point, saying he would have won if the cruz campaign had not spread the word falsely that ben carson was
getting out of the race. that's a list now. is it sticking? it's a list. whether you want to admit it or not, it's a list. is it hurting the man who was supposed to win the evangelical vote and lost it right where we're sitting? >> well, just so you know, it's a made-up list, and it's out of despereration. >> tell me what's not true on the list? >> well, for example, the issue with rick, and i have a lot of -- i know him. i think he's a well meaning person, but senator cruz showed real presidential leadership. he made the tough call. he asked rick to resign. he has resigned. senator rubio has accepted the apology. i understand the interest in the president and the story, but what counts is what you can do for the average american. you'll have senator cruz talking about his flat tax. i'm really excited about his flat tax. he's proposed, and again, i have nothing against account nlants, brother is a cpa but a 10% flat tax, a simple 16% flat tax for businesses. this will unlease the economic
engine. we had wage stagnation in the country for the last seven or eight years under president obama. senator cruz will be talking about issues that really matter to voters here and across the country. >> is he still, as i said to the rubio supporter playing for second place, will we see in the next debate ted cruz take on donald trump and not keep playing for second place? >> excellent question. again, the myth out there is that senator rubio is the alternative. he cannot -- simple math. if you're looking for the alternative, you have somebody who is poised to win three, four, five states. as this consolidates, as people recognize he's the only alternative, ted has a clear path to this republican nomination. >> we'll see if the numbers shake out the way your team hopes. thank you for your hospitality. >> we just received new reaction to the president's announcement from the sanders campaign, as he and hillary clinton are set to hold a town hall just a couple hours away from where we are stationed, days before primarin
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hillary clinton and bernie sanders are out on the campaign trail today, ahead of saturday's south carolina primary. and both clinton and sanders will be in this state tonight for a town hall. clinton is the only one with a campaign event in the state. now, senator sanders choosing instead to focus his efforts on virginia. one of the key states voting on super tuesday a week from today. nbc's kristen welker and kasie hunt are following the democratic campaigns for us. ladies, i'm fighting off a sneeze. i'll start with you kasie in norfolk, and talk a little bit about what the sanders campaign has said in this rally in the last hour. he's released a statement regarding gitmo. >> hey, tamron. yes, we're seeing sanders increasingly on the attack, holding somewhat of a press conference yesterday going after
hillary clinton on trade and super pacs. today, using the president's announcement on closing the guantanamo bay prison to hit hillary clinton just out in a new statement, saying, quote, sanders was one of only three senators to vote in 2007 against barring the transfer of guantanamo detainees to america. then-senator hillary clinton voted for the amendment that kept the prison open. we're digging a little more into these claims so we hopefully can bring you some more information on what senator sanders is referring to, and we'll see of course if he mentioned it today in norfolk. this, of course, shows you that south carolina not at the top priority right now for the sanders campaign. instead, super tuesday states like right here in virginia, tamron. >> all right, kasie. a little difficult to hear you there, but i want to transition to the clinton campaign. nbc's kristen welker, who was also listening in. so it appears to be, and was am
kasie hunt's statement, but it sounds as if senator sanders is taking aim regarding gitmo. but kristen, what are you hearing from the clinton campaign? >> secretary clinton hasn't released a state yet. i have been in contact with officials in her campaign. they're still working on their reaction. here's what we know. secretary clinton strongly urged president obama to close gitmo before she left her post as secretary of state. she wrote a memo to that point, encouraging him to apoint someone to oversee the closing of gitmo. she encouraged him to work more strongly with congress. she said it was hurting the united states' standing on the international stage. it was weakening national security. so i anticipate her statement will echo some of those themes. you hurt kasie point out the fact that senator sanders not as focused on south carolina. he's stumping in virginia today. sickitary clinton feeling quite strong in this state, and it comes as we're getting a new nbc news survey monkey online poll which shows her leading 51% to
40% and a double-digit lead here in south carolina as well. tamron. >> all right, kristen, and again, they're holding a town hall. should be interesting with all of the developments that we have seen just this morning alone. thank you so much. we'll see you later. coming up, the latest national polls show hillary clinton with a 43-point lead over bernie sanders among african-american voters. the question, did senator sanders make a miscalculation by not coming early and often to the south? he's reached out to the faith community, but did he go about it the wrong way? this is a question that extends past where we are in south carolina. it's coming up in louisiana, mississippi, and texas. just to name a few, and that conversation is coming up. it takes a lot of work... to run this business. but i really love it. i'm on the move all day long... and sometimes, i just don't eat the way i should. so i drink boost® to get the nutrition that i'm missing. boost complete nutritional drink has 26 essential vitamins and minerals, including calcium and vitamin d to support strong bones
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we are back live at citi market. nice group of people showing up, locals and folks visiting. thank you to all of them. we are talking about what is happening on the primary on saturday. joining me in south carolina is reverend nelson rivers of charity missionary baptist church and jimmy williams, not a reverend but he does preach sometimes. thank you both for joining us. reverend, let me start with you. african-american vote at this point largely supporting hillary clinton. did bernie sanders under estimate the connection that he needed to make that he could not be fly in fly out.
he may not win this race. >> his biggest challenge is he is not as well known as hillary who has been running since '08. i can't answer the part about did he take it for granted. we met. i like him. i haven't seen him and i don't know whether he talked to the right folk to get started. i think a part of the challenge you get is advice from outside of the faith community. come early, come often. we will talk to the folk who have influence and encourage to give you a listen and understand hillary started eight years ago almost. it is a long time for her to work in this community. for him he resonates with a lot of issues he articulates, what he positions with. he did not come early enough with the right folk. those numbers sound pretty significant. >> i don't know if it was an opening or not but we know the state went for barack obama and
there was bad blood between the clintons, congressman cliebern and black voters. >> as we know in politics it is fleeting. i agree. i think what senator sanders did he was a mistake. you don't -- politicians make political judgments. i think he understands the numbers are just too big for him. it doesn't mean that if you ignore the first in the south. if you win two southern states you become president of the united states. that is a fact of life. so it is simple. he should not have ignored it. it sends a signal to frams in other southern states i'm not with you and it doesn't help last summer when black lives matter and the practice between those two. this seems like a trend and not helpful. >> can he learn something from
if he made a misjudgment here that he can take to texas, louisiana, alabama, mississippi? >> show up, show up often. make sure you have every reverend and pastor talking about you if you can. >> i think hillary clinton has momentum when she said you are a single issue candidate making sure that all groups understand it is about their economic inequality and not just one group. >> advantage because barack obama is not running. hillary was leading eight years ago. obama met with a lot of folk and talks to a lot of folk. if he is going to well sanders has to have the right folk who know people. >> we'll see what he does moving forward and see what happens on saturday. it is not over until it is declared. i love being close to a reverend. thank you so much for watching this entire hour. we are still live in charleston. i'm heading to columbia later.
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the guy who uses just for men. it's me. >>no way. just for men gives you a natural gray-free look. just lather in. in just five minutes. great-looking hair, made easy. just for men. right now breaking news, closing gitmo. president obama tries once again to fulfill his promise to close the prison at guantanamo bay. >> when it becomes clear that something is not working as intended and does not advance our security we have to change course. this is about close ag chapter in our history. it reflects the lessons that we have learned since 9/11. >> republicans and some democrats are dead set against the plan. >> it would be illegal under current lawto