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tv   Meet the Press  NBC  February 28, 2016 10:00am-11:00am EST

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carolina has her looking towards >> then trump thumps rubio with a surprise endorsement. >> there is no one who is better prepared to provide america with the strong leadership that it needs. >> as donald trump collects endorsements, the republican establishment approaches panic. is it too late to stop trump now? donald trump and senator ted cruz are with me this morning. and when you look at moments like this. >> a con artist. >> you're a choker. >> hair force one. >> total lightweight. >> worst spray tan in america. >> biggest ears i've ever seen. >> is it time to ask whether the gop is on the brink of coming
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>> my party has gone bat [ bleep ] crazy. >> joining me for insight and analysis are charlie cook of the cook political reporter heather mcghee, and andrea mitchell of nbc news and erick erickson founder of the resur gent. trump, cruz, sanders, welcome to sunday and a special super press." from nbc news in washington, this is "meet the press" with chuck todd. good sunday morning. just 48 hours until super tuesday. we have so much to get to. let's get started. hillary clinton nothing less than a blowout win last night in south carolina. clinton beat bernie sanders 74 to 26, 3 to 1 margin, virtually every category in the african-american poll she won by a margin of 6 to 1 and also won every single county in the state.
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don't need to make america great again, america has never stopped being great. but we do need to make america whole again. >> look who's pivoting to the general. clinton's huge victory is a prelude to super tuesday when voters in 12 states go to the polls in the biggest single day of the primary season for both parties. and our brand new nbc news/"the wall street journal"/marist show big leads for her in georgia, tennessee and texas, sitting around the 60% mark in all three. let's turn to the wild republican race. and we'll go state by state in that one. in georgia donald trump has a 7-point lead over cruz and rubio, 30% for trump. cruz and rubio tied at 23. in tennessee trump's lead appears more durable. he's at 40% followed farther behind by cruz sitting in second and rubio a close third and then the rest of the field.
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ted cruz is hanging onto his must-win home state. and he has a comfortable 13-point lead over trump. rubio is a distant third there. now, these polls were taken before marco rubio's strong performance in that thursday night republican debate. so we asked our pollsters to recontact as many people as possible. we talked to 30% of the respondents in all three states to see whether rubio's debate performance changed anything. in short, it did not. trump, rubio and cruz all held onto roughly 90% of their supporters. in fact, in the raw ballot test rubio moved up all of one point. so we've got three presidential candidates with us this morning as we look forward to what could be a defining super tuesday. ted cruz, donald trump and bernie sanders. and i'm joined now by donald trump, the republican front-runner. mr. trump, welcome back to "meet the press," sir. >> good morning. >> let me just ask you, how'd you make the deal to get chris christie to endorse you?
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that i really wanted. i must tell you i was going to leave a little time go by before i called him. i did not call him. he called me. he saw what was happening. he said, donald, you have a movement going. like chuck, this afternoon, i think we have 25,000 people in alabama. we ended up moving to a football stadium because you couldn't hold. i mean, what we have going is incredible. yesterday in arkansas we had 15,000 people in a hangar in tennessee, it's amazing what's going on. he said there's a movement going on and i'd like to be part of it. i was very happy. i was getting ready to call him and he called me. honor. >> i'll tell you, he seems like you. there was a time he wasn't such a believer. let me play a few quotes. >> he's been very successful businessman, he has lots of talents. he has absolutely no ability in this area. be very careful about candidates who say ban all muslims from ridiculous. it will be a beautiful, wonderful wall, it will be an incredible wall, the wall will
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we're not picking an entertainer in chief. we're not casting a tv show. i don't think it would be in the best interest of our party to have someone who i don't think would be an effective president to be the nominee. >> mr. trump, as i can attest to, if anybody had said that, you would have unloaded on them on twitter. and sort of pulverized them. what made you accept christie's change of heart? >> well, you know, i heard those comments. and they were made in a rather low key manner and made in smaller locations. and they never got out very much so i never really had to go wild. but i did hear a little about them. but that's called welcome to the wonderful world of politics, i think. he's been a really good friend of mine. he's been a really good guy and good friend of mine for a long time. just having his endorsement is amazing. we did four stops between the last two days. and he's introduced me. and the place loves him, the
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we just get along very well. so, you know, that's called politics in all fairness, chuck, i think you've heard about it before, right? >> fair enough. he's certainly been quite the opening act for you the last two days. couple other things came up at the debate. couple of our attack tv ads are there, i want to play one on immigration and get you to respond on the other side. >> a federal court ruled that trump's company hired illegal immigrants to help the construction process for trump tower. he even paid $1 million fine. and his new hotel in washington. >> "the washington post" interviewed about 15 laborers at the d.c. hotel site reporting that many revealed they had entered the u.s. illegally. >> basically the charge is this, mr. trump, you don't practice what you preach on immigration. >> yeah. well, it's wrong. first of all, the one charge is from 35 years ago. i think that's a pretty good record when people have to go 35 years back to find out about workers. now, as i remember it those workers were hired by another company.
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had some workers that were perhaps from poland or some place. and this was the demolition of a building that made way for trump tower. so the workers, chuck, this is 35 years ago you're talking about. by the way the laws were totally different. the laws were not what they are now. totally different. as far as one of the great hotels in the world that's currently being built on pennsylvania avenue between the capitol building and the white house, there were no illegals. we do checks like you wouldn't believe. they didn't name any names. they didn't give any information. we are very, very careful. we have an excellent contractor. one of the best in the country works with me because we build them, i negotiate everything. and that's why that job by the way is two years ahead of schedule and under budget. and it's going to be one of the great hotels of the world. i'm doing a good job. they know what they did when they got me. and that's what happened. >> do you believe -- >> but they don't have any proof of any illegals. >> do you believe in e-verify? do you use e-verify in everything you do when it comes
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>> yeah. i have e-verify. yes, i do. i use e-verify in that building. "the washington post" mentioned that they spoke to people, there's no names. i read the story. it was from a few months ago. >> right. >> there are no names whatsoever. they have no proof. they have no evidence, no nothing. they saw people. and they were people coming out of the building. and they were absolutely -- we go with e-verify. i'm extremely strong on it. every time i have a contractor meeting in that building and we're doing fantastically well, we're going to open that building in september which will be very exciting, just before the election. perfect. i mean. >> the timing. >> but i will tell you this i am very -- the timing is good. but i am very, very tough on that. and they have absolutely no evidence whatsoever. it's a typical "the washington post" story. >> all right. you were obviously trump university came up. let me ask you this, if trump university was such a successful business and the trump -- i know you had to change the name because it wasn't a university. why isn't it still --
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outside of new york. >> why isn't it still a robust business? >> well, because we would open it again -- what happened is first of all you have to understand we had about 98% of the people that took the courses, approved the courses, they thought it was great, signed report cards and thought it was great. those people are suing. a lawyer said get your money back, that's great. get your money back. they rated the course 98% approval rating and high marks. number two, we have an a from the better business bureau. i could settle the case, but i don't want to settle the case. the reason is i don't want to be held up. once you settle cases, everybody sues you. i don't want to be held up. so i take the case. the one with the attorney general that was taken from these people they made a campaign contribution to the attorney general of new york. he met with president obama in syracuse, new york. and the following day or a day later he filed a case against
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and that case has been largely won, although they're appealing. but that case has been largely won by me. so it's very easy for me to settle these things, chuck, i just don't choose to do it. it's not a big deal. it's a civil case. it's not a big deal. but just so you understand, we have a 98% approval rating. business bureau. >> i guess the question is, did anybody succeed? did anybody make millions of your way? can you produce folks that have made millions using your way? >> people did succeed. and we have those people will be witnesses at the trial. and the man that's doing that, i believe he signed a document saying that he thought trump university was terrific in some form and that it was terrific. so we'll have to find out. i haven't seen this commercial, but the man that did that commercial i think if you tell me his name or we'll find it, but most of the people signed documents saying it was great. it will be interesting. he made the statement. let's see what he said about the school.
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document saying that the school is very good. but we'll find out. >> you said something else about the judge yesterday. you said one of the judges, you said, quote, i believe he happens to be spanish, which is fine. he's hispanic, which is fine. we haven't asked for a recusal, which we may do. why would you need to ask for a recusal? and what does his ethnicity have to do with it? >> because i think he's been very, very unfair with us. i think the judge has been extremely unfair. this is a case that many, many people said should have been thrown out on summary judgment. we have 98% approval -- >> and you think it's because he's hisspanic? >> well, because of the war and everything that's going on with mexico and all of that, i think frankly -- look, this is a judge who i believe has treated me very, very unfairly. this is a case that should have been thrown out a long time ago in the opinion of many great lawyers. >> as you know right now on twit
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you retweeted somebody it was a mussolini quote but you didn't know when you retweeted saying, it is better to live one day as a lion than 100 years as a sheep. that's a famous mussolini quote. you retweeted it. >> it's okay. it's a very good quote. it's a very interesting quote. i saw it -- i know who said it. but what difference does it make whether it's mussolini or somebody else? it's certainly a very interesting quote. that's probably why i have -- >> a known fascist -- do you want to be associated with a -- >> it's a very interesting quote and people can talk about it. >> do you want to be associated with a fascist? >> no, i want to be associated with interesting quotes. and people -- you know, i have almost 14 million people between instagram and facebook and twitter and all of that and we do interesting things. and i sent it out. and certainly, hey, it got your attention, didn't it?
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mr. trump, i have to leave it there. stay safe on the trail. could be a big night for you. and joining me now is senator ted cruz of texas who comes to us this morning from one of his must-do-well states in, springdale, arkansas. senator cruz, welcome back to "meet the press." >> chuck, good morning. good to be with you. well, let's set the expectations straight up. if you don't win texas, can you stay in this race? >> well, i think we're going to do very well in texas. and i think super tuesday could well be the most important day of the entire primary season. we are campaigning all across super tuesday. and at this point the facts are clear that there is only one candidate who has beaten and who can beat donald trump. and in super tuesday we are neck and neck with donald. across super tuesday we're doing very well in texas and fighting hard to beat him across the country. and i will say to the 65% of republicans who recognize donald trump as not the best candidate to go head-to-head with hillary clinton, the only way to beat
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and unite. and our campaign is the only one that can beat donald. so i ask for your support on super tuesday. >> let me ask you this, is the fairest way to decide who the chief challenger is to trump is the person who's in second place in delegates come wednesday morning between yourself and marco rubio? >> listen, there's no doubt we're likely to come out of super tuesday with a big difference in delegates. i think it is likely that you'll see donald trump has a whole bunch of delegates. i think it's likely that we'll have a whole bunch of delegates. >> do you think you'll be second? >> i think there's going to be a big, big dropoff between donald and me and the rest of the field. right now donald and i are one and two in delegates and right now one and two in the popular vote. you know historically no one has ever won the nomination in modern times without winning one of the first three states, iowa, new hampshire, south carolina. donald and i are the only two who have done that. >> you've released summary pages of your tax returns. so did marco rubio. you said the only reason you released summary pages is
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summary pages. why should donald trump -- how are you forcing donald trump to release his tax return if you're only releasing the first two pages? >> well, listen, i've released nine years of tax returns. and by the way the first five years have everything. the last four have summary pages. i've got nine years of tax returns. donald trump has not released so much as a paper clip. and donald needs to release his taxes. you know, mitt romney this week observed that the reason donald trump -- >> will you be happy if he just does summary pages? >> look, it would be a very positive step in the right direction. i would be thrilled if he releases the whole thing, i'm happy to release everything i've released for five years i've released everything. we just matched what the opponents did for the last four years. but the critical point, chuck, as mitt romney observed the fact that donald seems terrified to release his taxes suggests there's a bombshell there. and it's natural to wonder, well, what is it that he's hiding in his taxes? maybe it's that donald trump
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he has so loudly told everyone. maybe he's not as rich as he says he is. who knows. maybe it's the case that mitt romney is richer than donald trump. he could answer that by releasing his taxes. on the other hand maybe it's the case that he has given large sums of money to left wing groups like planned parenthood. you know, he praises planned parenthood in the debates over and over again. maybe he's been a big financial supporter of that. all of those questions donldsald can put to rest. or, chuck, maybe it is that it is the case there have been multiple media reports about donald's business dealings with the mob, with the mafia. maybe taxes show those business dealings are more extensive than reported regardless of what the bombshell is -- >> senator cruz, let me stop you there. that's openly speculative. do you have any facts to support that donald trump has mob ties? >> oh, sure. abc, cnn, multiple news reports have reported about his business dealings with for example s & a
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solerno who is a mobster in jail. it is owned by two of the major new york crime families. and that has been reported in multiple media outlets. you know, you're going to have donald on the show later today, you ought to ask him, donald, have you written a check to planned parenthood? if so, how much and when? i mean, that's a question that donald ought to answer. we don't know what it is that he's hiding in those tax returns, but i can promise you this, if he's the nominee come september, october, every day on the news will be about those tax returns about whatever the bombshell is. and republican primary voters deserve to know before the nomination, not after. because you better believe hillary clinton and the media are going to go to town on it. and the primary voters should be able to vet all of us. >> let me ask you something rush limbaugh said earlier this week about your candidacy. he said ted cruz has fought these guys every day that he's been in washington, and for a lot of reasons that doesn't register. basically he's -- sounds like he
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fact is donald trump stole your outsider brand. super tuesday was supposed to be the day you were going to be solidifying your status as the front-runner. and it's not turning out that way. how did trump steal your outsider brand? >> well, listen, i think super tuesday will continue to narrow the field. the first four states narrowed the field down from 17 candidates to a much smaller field. i think super tuesday we will effectively have two candidates coming out of it that have a viable path that have enough delegates to have a shot at winning. and head-to-head with donald trump i beat donald by 16 points, 56 to 40. you know, we really saw this in the debate last week, we saw a contrast between washington dealmakers. and this is how we've gotten in the mess we're in now is republicans who've cut deals with democrats, grow the debt, grow government and give away our constitutional rights, a contrast between dealmakers and conservative. you know, chuck, it was striking when donald trump said, ted, you
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on the supreme court. you got to be willing to compromise on religious liberty. let me tell you i will not liberty rights. i will not compromise away your second amendment. donald trump is telling us if he's president he'll cut a deal with harry reid and chuck schumer and give away your constitutional rights. >> let me end where we began, if you are third in delegates wednesday morning, do you reassess your candidacy? >> well, listen, i don't intend to be third in delegates. i don't believe i am. i think that may be a question you'll have to pose to other candidates, but i will say what we saw last week was in the seminal battle on amnesty when i was leading the fight against the rubio/schumer gang of eight amnesty bill and we defeated the gang of eight amnesty bill, donald trump was funding the gang of eight.
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five of the eight supporting open-border democrats and if you've been hiring illegal immigrants as donald trump has been doing. >> all right. senator ted cruz, i got to leave it there. republican from texas. have a safe time on the trail and we'll be watching on super tuesday, in a full-on panic over the possibility of donald trump securing this nomination. could we be looking at the beginning of a crackup inside the gop as we know it?ackup inside the gop as we know it? we were born 100 years ago into a new american century. born with a hunger to fly and a passion to build something better. and what an amazing time it's been, decade after decade of innovation, inspiration and wonder. so, we say thank you america for a century of trust,
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to make people and organizations safer. welcome back. panelists here, charlie cook, heather mcgee, andrea mitchell, and erick erickson. welcome, all. republicans in a full-on panic. i caught up with john kasich yesterday. there was this big "new york times" story, mitt romney apparently trying to convince kasich to get out. >> nobody's asked me to drop out. you know, it wouldn't matter to me anyway. i really don't want to get into private conversations with people, but that never happened
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me, you know, what i need to do with my career. that's not what it was about. and i've had a number of conversations with him and a lot of e-mail exchanges. and we just have to leave it there. at the end of the day, each of these candidates should be able to win their own home state. i'm going to win ohio. if i don't win ohio, ball game over. >> charlie, this is the issue. there isn't anybody to rally around. kasich's not ready to drop out. rubio won't drop out for cruz. cruz won't drop out for rubio. trump is going to walk away with these things. >> expectations don't matter. after tuesday, is donald trump on a trajectory to get the delegates, yes or no. and for all these other guys, you know, it's can they keep him under that trajectory, is what's important. and i've been very skeptical about trump winning the nomination from the very beginning.
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>> my knees are weakening a little. when two out of three republican voters in national polls, and averaging in the four events so far, are against him, are they going to coalesce behind him? they all know him, they're all familiar with him, but are they familiar with him? >> his percentages in the states are similar to mitt romney's. >> part of the problem is republicans haven't really been able to say in a unified way, why exactly he can't be their standard-bearer. they can't say it's because of bigoted things, because those things have been around the party. there's not a unified story but why he's not a republican. >> you believe it's an on conservative values. you've been critical of cruz and rubio for not being able to coalesce.
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about it. it was interesting, thursday, they finally together tag teamed donald trump, name checking each other so the other would say, hey, i get 30 seconds to respond. when the sun rises on wednesday, whoever has the most delegates to be in second place has a case to say, we need a reagan-bush coalition. >> you think the likelihood of those guys working together? >> they have to, reagan and bush had to work together. >> marco rubio has to prove that he is a credible alternative for the establishment republicans. what we saw in that debate thursday night, the playground rhetoric, was so deeply offensive to so many people on all sides, that you've got people, you know, trump and rubio going after each other for their hair, their ears, wetting your pants. how have we reached this point? >> instead of you quoting them, i want to play them going back and forth.
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let me play it. well, we're going to -- all right. we're going to deal with that later in the show. the other part of what we saw in the playground rhetoric, though, was chris christie's endorsement. how important was it? >> i think it's a big -- it was obviously a big deal for trump, to have somebody, any kind of establishment figure say he's okay. and i was as flabbergasted as anybody. i did not expect it. >> let me tell you other people who were flabbergasted. amazingly, it's chris christie who is taking heat here. john fund, a conservative writer. "well, now we know the stuff of which chris christie is made. what a cynical hack mr. straight shooter, chris christie, turned out to be." here is the unbelievable quote of the morning. meg whitman, national finance co-chair for chris christie for president puts out this
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news this morning. "chris christie's endorsement of donald trump is an astonishing display of political opportunism. donald trump is unfit to be president, a dishonest demagogue who plays to our worst fears. the governor is mistaken if he thinks he can now count on my support." how about that? >> wow, i agree with christie todd whitman. >> no, meg whitman, ceo of hp. >> yes. good for her. i agree with her statement. and i've gotten them from a lot of people. i don't know that it actually helps donald trump headed into the south to have a governor who supported gun control. >> what's so remarkable about it, it isn't as though they were adversaries in the past. two weeks ago, chris christie's on video, as you played, for donald trump. the hypocrisy and opportunism is to transparent, it helped in one big way. it cut marco rubio's momentum on a day when he otherwise would
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>> we'll take a quick pause here. we've got a lot more to talk about on this, i promise. but in a moment i'll catch up with senator bernie sanders. does he have a path left to the nomination after getting
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shalacked in south carolina? there are those who say we cannot defeat a corrupt political system and fix a rigged economy. but i believe we need to lift our vision above the obstacles in place and look to the american horizon. to a nation where every child can not only dream of going to college, but attend one. where quality healthcare will be a birthright of every citizen. where a good job is not a wish, but a reality. where women receive equal pay and a living wage is paid to all. an america where after a lifetime of labor, there is time for rest and grandchildren. a nation that defends our people and our values,
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i know we can create that america if we listen to our conscience and our hearts and not to the pundits and the naysayers. i'm bernie sanders. i approve this message, and i ask for your vote. welcome back. it was a tough night saturday for my next guest, bernie sanders. with hillary clinton enjoying a
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carolina primary, that makes super tuesday even more crucial if he's going to keep his hopes alive for securing the democratic nomination. senator sanders, welcome back to "meet the press," sir. >> my pleasure. >> a month ago, senator, a month ago you said i think we're picking up more and more african-american support, frankly i think we can win there, referring to south carolina. you lost african-american voters 84 to 16, worse than any poll had shown. senator, what happened? >> well, we got decimated, that's what happened. among older african-americans it was pathetic from our perspective. but by the way, what was the glimmer of positive news for us is that we won the 29 years of age or younger vote. and we did well with african-american young people as well as white young people. but no question secretary clinton won that state and she won it big, but i'm in minnesota now. i think we got a real shot at minnesota.
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colorado, oklahoma, massachusetts and vermont. so we're looking to the future, not looking back. we had two rallies yesterday in texas. 10,000 people out in austin, 8,000 people out in dallas. i think the future for us it's going to be a tough fight. i think we can pull it off, chuck. >> look, the game is delegates now. it's not where you win states, it's about accumulating delegates. >> right, that's right. >> your campaign is targeting states worth 288 delegates on supertize super tuesday. secretary clinton is targeting six states worth 531. if you both do well, she's going to have at least a 200-delegate lead on you if you're not careful at that point. this is -- why aren't you trying to win more delegates than her on super tuesday? >> well, we are trying to win every delegate that we can. and not only are we fighting for super tuesday, we're looking ahead to california, the largest state of all.
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going to do well in michigan -- look, chuck. let's be clear. we began this campaign nine and a half months ago at 3% in the polls, 70 points behind hillary clinton. in the last two weeks some polls nationally have actually had us in the lead. we have come a long, long way fighting for the message that we're going to end income and wealth inequality and a broken criminal justice system and a corrupt campaign finance system. we have developed enormous momentum all over this country. it is a tough fight. we knew that from the beginning. but i think we're going to do well on super tuesday. we're going to do well in many states after that. and we look forward to those state by state struggles. >> you know, there's a long story in the "new york times" today detailing secretary clinton's role in pushing the president on libya at the time, helping to step in to overthrow gadhafi. let me ask you this, would libya be in better shape today if gadhafi were still in power?
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clinton and i have very strong differences of opinion on foreign policy. i help lead the opposition to this disastrous war in iraq, she supported it. to answer your question, no one can speculate. nobody knows. but i think in terms of regime change, whether it is gadhafi, whether it is assad in syria these are terrible dictators, but you've got to be thinking about what happens the day after the kind of political vacuum that occurs in libya of course as a result of the overthrow of gadhafi, isis now has a strong foothold. i would have done it differently if i were president of the united states. secretary clinton also believes -- no, i would have worked more patiently. i know it's a difficult situation, but you can't just go forward with regime change. you got to be thinking about the day after. and i think the same thing is true in syria. secretary clinton disagrees with president obama and myself regarding a no-fly zone. i fear that can get us entangled more into that war.
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cease-fire that they have now holds negotiated by secretary kerry. but i think her approach to foreign policy and mine are just quite different. >> earlier this week as the back and forth on the crime bill gone you had said you supported the house version because it had an assault weapons ban in it, but that turned out not to be the case. so why did you put out a statement that was misleading -- >> whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. no. that's not my understanding. >> it was not in the house bill that you voted. it was in a senate bill, but it was not in that house bill. >> to the best of my knowledge -- hold it. to the best of my knowledge there were two important provisions. and that is violence against women act which was very important. i've worked very hard to prevent domestic violence. and on my understanding there is a ban on assault weapons in that bill. look, i spoke on the floor of the house about the harmful impacts of that bill.
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cons i voted for it. and by the way i also voted against the so-called welfare reform act that secretary clinton then supported which has had a horrible impact on the poorest of the poor people in this country. >> all right. senator sanders, i have to leave it there. i know you have another interview coming up. i appreciate it. stay safe on the trail. we'll be watching on tuesday. >> thank you. >> you got it. we'll be back after the break with a look at where the republican race might be headed after super tuesday. and then later -- >> donald, donald, i understand rules are very hard for you -- >> if the republican presidential race is becoming a race to the bottom, how will that play with general election vo frank abagnale. convicted felon and con man. that was a long time ago. you know, they made a movie about it. you were shown to be quite skilled at fraud. times change. now i help catch the bad guys. me too. i help banks detect fraud by applying cognitive analytics to public financial records and social media.
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we can. let's do a sequel. it could be a buddy movie.
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i'm still a doer. ask your doctor about lyrica today. lyrica, move forward with less fibromyalgia pain. data download is brought to you by lyrica. let's dive right into our "meet the press" data download. our own version of march madness, we'll start with donald trump because his path is the most straightforward. on super tuesday 11 republican contests across the country, if polls are right, trump is going to have a sizable delegate lead. in fact, if you look here this 289 number, it's possible we're being conservative in our estimates there. he could have an even bigger delegate lead come march 2nd. then for him it's about march 15. if trump does take the critical winner take all delegate states particularly in ohio and
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states that day as well, but if he wins both of those and the others, he will have more than half the delegates he needs to win the nomination and then ilt becomes almost impossible for anyone to catch trump. so let's look at marco rubio's path. on super tuesday he's got three or four states he's covering the most. this is what he needs. he needs to ideally win somewhere, but at least be consensus second everywhere. virginia, oklahoma and arkansas are the three states he's spending the most time in. and by the way he would be helped if trump beat ted cruz in texas, which would effectively knock cruz out of the race. that's a strategy there. then, in a one-on-one on march 15th rubio hopes to beat trump in ohio and florida, and then after that look at what the delegate total would be under that scenario. rubio would actually have a slight lead at this point and we'd be looking at sort of a long march to cleveland, because by the way it would be impossible for anybody to get a majority of the delegates by july to pull that out.
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cruz, he's got a pretty straightforward path to relevance here. number one he's got to win texas, and he's hoping to win the two states that border texas on super tuesday, oklahoma and arkansas. cruz really wants to be able to say that he won iowa, texas and something else, what is that something else? and of course he needs to be second. then he also would like to eliminate rubio before florida and then cruz become the alternative and cruz be the guy that everybody rallies around and he somehow beats trump in one of these two major super tuesday states. but again, just like rubio, there is only a path to a contested convention for ted cruz. so that's the bottom line we're looking at here. two paths forward, trump comes away march 15th substantial lead and game, set, match presumptive nominee or the republican party is looking at an open convention come july. talk about cleveland rocking then. when we come back we'll look at where the democratic race is headed.
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welcome back. we spent much of the show talking about how divided the gop has become, but there are also some fractures within the democratic race. and my next guest, tulsi gabbert has been at odds with dnc chair for months over the democratic debate schedule. congresswoman, you're here because you have an announcement to make regarding your position at the dnc. tell us. >> well, first of all, i am resigning from the dnc so that i can support bernie sanders for president. i would like to tell you why. as a veteran and as a soldier i've seen firsthand the true cost of war. i served in a medical unit
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every single day i saw firsthand the very high human cost of that war. i see it in my friends who now a decade after we've come home are still struggling to get out of a black hole. i think it's most important for us as we look at our choices as to who our next commander in chief will be is to recognize the necessity to have a commander in chief who has foresight, exercises good judgment, who looks beyond the consequences, looks at the consequences of the actions they're looking to take before they take those actions so we don't continue to find ourselves in these failures that have resulted in chaos in the middle east and so much loss of life. >> but you know, it was just a month ago -- and this was sort of got us curious, a month ago you said you think the next commander in chief needs to have a, quote, military mindset. you said this during an interview on fox news. does senator sanders have a military mindset? >> from what i've seen, from talking with him and from his record he does. and what that military mindset means is you go through an
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looking at potential courses of action that you're going to take and how and when we use our military power. and just as importantly when we don't use that military power that military mindset says you have foresight. you look at what are the results, what are the consequences of these actions, how will other actors in the area react to those actions, what will we then do. and you look continue down the line so you know exactly what you're potentially getting yourself into before you make that decision that ends up costing us lives and treasure. >> i w wnt to bring in the rest of the panel here. heather, i'll start with you. let's mix it up here, but just when it looks like the democratic party hillary clinton's got to go on the ability to unite the party as she's potentially building a commanding lead, this is a fracture. >> i think that the democratic party has always needed a primary. this is a time when our core issues around the social
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our country, around climate change, around debt free college in the next generation are at the center of the debate. so we have to have a full debate about them. and i frankly think it's time for us to really have a message that actually integrates the party that talks about economic inequality and how racism has driven economic inequality. >> so you think this primary, do you think it's moved hillary clinton? >> absolutely. i think it's sharpened bernie sanders and most importantly it's educated millions of americans about the plu tockinequality and racism in this country. >> i think having been out there it is a very healthy debate and more civilized debate, i should say. but being in south carolina as much as i was, it's striking and the results in the election last night prove and it could foreshadow what happens on tuesday, that bernie sanders has yet to understand the language and the way to describe issues that really appeal to the african-american voters, at least in the south.
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african-american voters. he frames income inequality in terms of citizens united and campaign finance reform and super pacs and wall street and what the older african-american women are eager to hear is more kitchen table issues. and it really strikes me going all the way back to january 17th when we had our debate in south carolina, that's when her michigan. flint, michigan. and that was her first foray into appealing to these voters. and she seems to be connecting in a way and he is not. >> congressman, respond to this that bernie sanders hasn't connected. >> i think when you see the ground swell of support that he's gotten not only in one or two states but in states across the country, i think this is where there is a hunger for a leader, a commander in chief who is honest, who has integrity, who exercises good judgment. the communication of the contrast between hillary clinton and bernie sanders is something that has begun and i think needs
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that as we continue through the next super tuesday states that are voting and beyond that voters are equipped with the right information especially as it pertains to war and peace and how these decisions impact these communities of color, how they impact communities that are coming from a different place. >> i think whenever you see problems in one party, if you look, you'll see them over in the other side. in the democratic side, the divisions that you see with the republicans are there as well. if you think about it hillary clinton was at the far left of her husband's administration and now she finds herself scrambling like mad to the party moved to her left. there are divisions in both sides. so if you think about sort of the future of the democratic party, you get past hillary clinton or maybe joe biden and you got to go way, way, way left before you find anybody that's on the national stage. >> i also wouldn't characterize it as left and right the way
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long time. >> exactly. >> particularly when we're talking about economic progressivism, this is something that's really more about insider and outsider, about top and bottom on the economic spectrum. >> that's been the split there. >> and her vulnerability is she has yet to prove -- >> if hillary clinton is on a march to the nomination, does that help your efforts to unify behind cruz and rubio? >> i think it would. in a normal year it would. i don't know that it will this year because there is so much anger. talking about outsiders and insiders, there is so much anger now people are making decisions emotionally, they're not looking. i for one am very happy to be talking about the democratic primary. >> fair enough. but a pause there. congresswoman, nice to see you. thanks for coming by making that news here. segment and question whether the republican party can survive
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>> my party - even parents need a time out sometimes, especially from communications technology. so why not spend one hour totally unplugged? read, talk, make art, or whatever. no batteries required. end game time. and to say the republican race is getting ugly would be quite the understatement, andrea, as we talked about i promised a compilation of this earlier in the show. >> yes. >> here it is.
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disruptive, throwing punches, i'd like to punch him in the face. i'll tell ya. >> donald, donald, i understand rules are very hard for you. >> i don't know why because the podium goes up to here, but he wanted a full length mirror. maybe to make sure his pants weren't wet, i don't know. >> thank god he has really large ears, the biggest ears i've ever seen. >> he's flying around on hair force one and tweeting. >> i go back and i see him with makeup and it's like he's putting it on with a trowel. >> and a guy with the worst spray tan in america is attacking me for putting on makeup. donald trump likes to sue people. he should sue whoever did that to his face. >> it's rubio. >> all right. it has become -- there are nights i felt like the debate, erick, was "wwe raw."
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am i on the right channel? this is not good for the party. >> no, it's not. donald trump has brought the party down to a new low. he's feeding off people's anger on both parties. there are legitimate grievances but it's become unhealthy. i think rubio and cruz had to do what they did to prove they could dish it back out to donald trump. voters supporting donald trump they're looking for the alpha dog. you have to show you can be the alpha as well. unfortunately it turns american politics into more of a farce than it already is. >> and i think it really is a warning to hillary clinton if she were to become the nominee because i'm not sure she knows that any democrat and especially democratic woman would know how to counteract the donald trump phenomenon. how do you debate that? he'll go after benghazi, on e-mails where she has vulnerabilities, you could have another e-mail dump on monday night, tomorrow night, before the super tuesday. 3,000 pages. you know, all of us going to be poring through it. >> are democrats going to make the same mistake republicans
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three months and then hope by the fall when the debates happen they beat him? >> no, i think you've already seen that in both of their speeches actually. they've been going after donald trump. and it's really important because right now, you know, half of americans couldn't pay a $400 bill without going into debt or selling something. and when you see billionaires and well-connected politicians going after each other and being sort of obsessed with each other when you're struggling, that's really, really bad for our democracy and alienates people. >> so, charlie, you still believe trump can be stopped, but to stop him it's got to be an insiders game. don't you play to trump outsider strength? >> i think these other candidates are frustrated that trump's played a different set of rules. and that he's been held to a lower standard. if they have a plan, they have to explain it. he could skate away by saying it will be the biggest or we'll have many state plans. i mean, i think it's just been building and building and building and finally they're
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plus they have to keep -- >> do you think though, you know it's funny with rubio doing what he did. again, sort of the rick flare mindset. if you want to beat the man you got to be the man. but he's already got the, is he presidential. >> i think that does impact rubio to a degree. but to charlie's point it's not just that trump plays by different rules, it's that republicans haven't used the existing rules against a very few ad dollars spent against donald trump. >> thank you, i don't get it. >> attack ads work and they're only just now starting. it's not that trump gets by with everything, it's that they've let him get by. >> one of the things about rubio which you just alluded to is he already had a deficit of stature of being presidential, commander in chief. so to get into the playground or the sand box with donald trump, yes, he needed to go after him, but go after him on substance. >> but the substance hasn't worked. >> i think you have to go after personality. >> do you think it lowers him -- >> well, i agree. but substance hadn't worked. let me ask you this, you alluded to it during the break.
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mission to stop donald trump is to run a third party republican. you mentioned you half joked rick perry for president. do you think there will be a third party -- >> absolutely. >> a constitution party candidate say. >> absolutely. there are too many conservatives who would sit it out if it was donald trump. i think ultimately donald trump supporters need to understand hillary clinton will be elected if they choose to go down this path. and republicans have an obligation to make it clear in the primary that it will be hillary clinton if they don't change. >> and not just among the hard core conservatives, but for the establishment they're deathly afraid that establishment republican voters would just stay home if donald trump -- >> good-bye senate, maybe even good-bye house. >> so you gave someone just for normal republicans, conventional republicans to just show up and vote for even if they have no chance of winning a general election they'll be showing up to vote for the senate for governor for house for all these down ballot offices. >> wow. >> i think donald trump has a
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general election with a lot of democrats, rust belt state. >> it's going to be interesting. trump could overperform in the rust belt, overperform in the sun vote. that would be an electoral vote nightmare. we're out of time. we need to go 90 minutes. alert the affiliates, isn't that what ted koppel used to say. join us for complete primetime coverage of the super tuesday results on your nbc news affiliate. as for us, we'll be back next
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