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tv   Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  January 15, 2016 2:00pm-4:01pm PST

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right here on cnn. i'm going to be watching for sure. that's it for "the lead." i'm jim sciutto in today for jake tapper. i turn you over to wolf blitzer where you normally find him, in "the situation room." happening now, midair collision, desperate search underway right now for any trace of survivors after a horrific accident off the coast of hawaii. a dozen marines are missing after two military helicopters collide in the dark. what went wrong? i'll ask the congresswoman whose district includes the helicop r helicopter's bay. faking smiles, new details emerging about iran's fremont of ten u.s. sailors captured then freed this week. they say they were told to act happy for iran's propaganda videos. all this comes as iran is about to get a multibillion dollar windfall. its leaders can spend basically any way they want. new york nicked. ted cruz insults new york values, donald trump fires back. the new york tabloids pile on.
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and even hillary clinton is on trump's side. and tainted tequila. as movie star sean penn breaks his silence about meeting the fugitive mexican drug lord el chapo, cnn learns investigators are looking into whether el chapo provided any funding to a mexican actress's tequila venture. i'm in wolf blitzer, you're in "the situation room." we now have first daylight pictures of the ongoing search for survivors after two u.s. military helicopters went down off the coast of hawaii. 12 marines are missing, the in-flight collision happened in the dark. witnesses say they saw a flash in the sky. others heard a loud boom over the water. so far no signs of survivors. we're also learning now about some new details emerging how the iranians treated the ten u.s. sailors captured this week. among other things the now-freed
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sailors were told to act happy when iranians put them on camera. i'll speak with congresswoman tulsi gabbard of the armed services and foreign affairs committee. she's in hawaii. she's monitoring this search. and our correspondents, analysts and guests they'll have full coverage of the day's top stories. our pentagon correspondent barbara starr is working her sources. what's the latest, first of all, barbara, on those missing marines? >> wolf, the search has been underway both with ships and aircraft for many hours yet. so far about seven miles off north shore of oahu. and even the video that we're getting in shows the surf is picking up there. so far no sign of the 12 souls that were on those two helicopters. six marines on each of ch-53 helicopters. so the search goes on now, but indeed the coast guard and the military now asking people to stay out of the water and off the beaches due to the heavy surf. there may be very large pieces
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of dangerous debris in the water moving around. and they don't want people to get hurt if that debris comes ashore, wolf. >> barbara, what are you learning about the u.s. sailors who were held by iran, later released. there's new information emerging. >> the initial debriefs are revealing some new details, wolf. we are learning from defense officials that the sailors are reporting indeed they changed course. as they were moving up northward through the persian gulf, they were apparently felt they were running tight on time to make it to a refueling point so they changed course, cut a corner somewhere to be able to get to that refueling point on time sooner. not clear that they even knew this course might let them drift into iranian waters. they were trying to fix an engine leak at the same time. and apparently not paying attention by all accounts at this point to exactly where they were. what about that video of them when we see them smiling,
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getting food, water, a meal? we are told that the sailors have now told the investigators they were ordered by the iranians to put on a happy face for those iranian tv cameras. it is not clear yet whether the commander who we saw apologizing was directly ordered by the iranians to apologize. but the initial reports are that the lieutenant felt he had no choice at that point but to utter those words, wolf. >> barbara starr at the pentagon, thank you. we're also awaiting an announcement that iran could begin collecting billions and billions of dollars that its leaders can use basically any way they want. it's part of the controversial nuclear deal the iranians negotiated with the secretary of state john kerry and other global partners. our chief national security correspondent jim sciutto is joining us now with more on the iranians multibillion dollar potential windfall. that could happen pretty soon. >> that's right. in fact we learned a few moments ago secretary of state john kerry is traveling to vienna tomorrow to meet with his
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iranian counterpart javad zarif. here's what happens if the deal goes through. basically you're going to have the lifting of these punishing economic sanctions that have been in place for years against iran's economy. and that will unleash not necessarily on the first day but over time an enormous economic windfall for iran. first of all you have $150 billion in frozen iranian assets overseas that are going to be freed up. now, iran's not going to get all $150 billion because a good deal of that money is owed to creditors. it's going to be basically paying off debt. other things tied up because it's still difficult for iran to work in the international banking system. the u.s. treasury estimates they'll net about $50 billion from those frozen assets. still a big chunk of money. you have other things happening as well with its economy. they're going to be able to sell their oil and gas on the international markets. grant it the price of oil is way down from where it was a couple years ago, but this is something iran is really not been able to
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do for a number of years. that means more income for the iranian government. finally, all these international firms whether european, even including american firms that were barred by law from doing business with iran will start to be able to do business with iran. and trust me, i've been to iran a number of times, wolf, these companies have been going in there for years waiting for this moment. so they've done a lot of leg work when those restrictions are lifted, there's going to be money made, deals made and that includes u.s. firms. doesn't necessarily mean they're going to rush in there, but it means u.s. foreign firms as well do things like sell cars there, you name it. it's going to mean a lot more money for the iranian government. >> the critics as you know they point out that if the iranians do wind up cheating, jim, that it's going to be hard to get back those billions of dollars, hard to turn around all the business ventures that are about to start. go back to where iran is right now. what are you hearing about that contingent? >> listen, it's a fair criticism. you heard from secretary of
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state john kerry, the president throughout these negotiations that there would be so-called snapback provisions in this deal. so that if iran breaks its agreement on the accord that you could quickly reimpose these sanctions so that you're again punishing the iranian economy. the trouble is it took years to build this international coalition. and the sanctions worked because they're international. to get them all together on the same page, you know, frankly it's not going to happen overnight. now, the administration is confident it can find ways to do that. and they have a lot of power by blocking companies for instance from using the u.s. financial system. but you're not going to be able to turn back on what you have today necessarily quickly tomorrow or the next day when this deal is implemented. it's going to be hard to do. >> all right. jim sciutto, thanks very much. joining us now is democratic congresswoman tulsi gabbard of hawaii. she serves on the armed services and foreign affairs committee. she's also an iraq war veteran. congressman thanks very much for joining us. that marine corps base, the location where these helicopters crashed, i take it -- correct me
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if i'm wrong, they're both within your district. i know you're concerned. everyone is concerned. what's the latest you can tell us about this crash? >> yeah, wolf, this is such a sad, sad day to have seen this accident take place overnight. you're right, both the marine corps base where these marines are operating from as well as the site of the accident, this helicopter crash that took place are both in my district. we've got everyone from the honolulu fire department, the u.s. coast guard, the navy, the marines all resources have been deployed ever since to try to conduct this search and rescue mission, which is really difficult because of the place that it took where it happened. this is happening on north shore of oahu which is famous for its huge waves. and we've got a north swell coming in right now there making it so that you've got anywhere from 20 to 40 foot swells, waves coming in making this search and rescue mission even more challenging than it normally
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would. so as the families are notified, the marines and community are just stepping up in support of them during this very, very difficult time. and our heart and prayers go out to all of them. >> i take it these kinds of midair collisions by military helicopters very, very rare. we're looking at some video of the squadron training from the base. that video to our viewers. this is a serious -- i assume it was some sort of accident. have they given you a basic preliminary readout on what happened? >> you know, they're looking at everything that's been going on. and i think there are a number of things that could have attributed to this, but i know that the effort right now is absolutely focused on the search and rescue mission. i know a lot of questions will be asked and hopefully answered as we look at what caused this accident. but you know, wolf, i think that this is an important reminder that we as americans should never forget that whether our service members are training
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here at home or whether they're fighting abroad that their lives are on the line. they have sacrificed so much for our country. and that's something that we've got to honor and always remember and be grateful to them for. >> and as you point out, the wind conditions, weather conditions, the waves what 20 to 40 foot waves right now, that makes the job of those searching for these marines so much more difficult. what's the forecast as far as weather is concerned? >> you know, right now it seems like the winds are relatively calm. as i mentioned the swells are growing, these waves are very, very big and can be dangerous if you're out there in the water. but also there's kind of a haze in the air, it's been in the air since yesterday when i got here. that's caused by the volcano on the big island. the volcano is active. the wind brings this kind of volcanic haze which we call vog. whether or not that had something to do with it i don't
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know, but that's another kind of weather situation that we're dealing with here right now. >> congresswoman, standby. we have a lot more to talk about including the imminent start of billions of dollars flowing to iran. what exactly happened to those ten american sailors aboard those two little vessels that were taken by iran. much more with tulsi gabbard right after this. hi i'm heather cox
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we're back with democratic congresswoman tulsi gabbard of hawaii as we learn new details about how iran treated the ten u.s. sailors they captured then freed this week. among other things the captains were told to act happy when their pictures were taken for propaganda videos. this new information comes just a day before secretary of state john kerry meets with iran's
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foreign minister javad zarif in vienna. could pave the way for lifting of international sanctions and a multibillion dollar windfall for the iranians starting in the coming days. congresswoman, as you know, iran will soon be flush with a lot of money as a result of this deal. they could basically spend this money any way they want. susan rice, the president's national security adviser last year told me they could do with it basically whatever they want. does that worry you? >> it points to the need for enforcement and the need to really keep a very close eye on what iran is doing. before implementation day can occur, which you mention secretary kerry is traveling there to do there were some very key things iran had to do in order to get here. one of them was to get rid of 90% of their uranium stockpile. they had to completely destroy their iraq heavy water nuclear reactor. by pouring concrete into it. they had to get rid of and
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remove over 13,000 centrifuges and put them under the iaea's constant surveillance. and other actions. the results of these actions has been -- we've gone from just several months ago a two to three-month breakout time for iran to develop a nuclear weapon to now having finished these actions. we're now over a year of breakout time, which really is what we should be looking at. secondly, as we look at how iran may spend this money, we've heard a few different ways they may be spending it. one of the key things i think we should really be focusing on is their ballistic missile tests, their violation of the international agreement by testing just a few months ago and really the fact that there's been no consequences levied against them ever since. if we expect them to comply with these agreements, it's important that we enact sanctions that we ensure that these consequences are put in place. >> i know a lot of your
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colleagues, democrats and republicans in the house have urged the white house to go ahead and impose sanctions because of those iranian ballistic missile tests, which the u.s. says was a violation of their agreement. so far no new sanctions posed by the administration. they're delaying. have you checked into that why the delay? >> you know, we haven't gotten any real clear answers on why that delay has occurred. but i and some of my colleagues in congress are taking action nonetheless. i co-sponsored a bill last week called the zero tolerance for terrorism act, which really goes in a pointed way at iran and allows congress to enact these further sanctions specifically for iran sponsoring further acts of terror against the u.s. or its allies and especially for these ballistic missile tests that have clearly violated international agreements. i think that this is a nonpartisan issue where you've got democrats and republicans standing clearly and strongly
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saying that there must be consequences not later down the line but now for iran in order to send a strong message. that these actions, this ballistic missile development not only threatens our allies like israel, but it poses a direct threat to europe and the united states should they be allowed to continue to develop this capability. so it's something that we've got to take very seriously. >> you're a military veteran. there's been a lot of condemnation by u.s. officials certainly republican presidential candidates john mccain himself. the way the iranians forced the ten american sailors to put their hands over their heads, get down on their knees, make those statements, apologizing, if you will. they say this was a violation of the geneva conventions. when you see those pictures, congresswoman, as a military veteran who served in iraq, what goes through your mind? >> you know, wolf, when i saw those pictures, it gave me a
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very sick feeling. it was a terrible thing to see how these sailors were being treated there. i was very relieved however to see them return home or return back from that position of captivity so quickly. and the fact that they were unharmed. and i am very interested to learn more and to get more of our questions answered about how they got there in the first place. what was the reason for this? because something like this really should not have ever occurred. >> the state department says it was not a violation of the geneva conventions they argue because technically the u.s. is not at war in a state of war with iran although others say putting these images on iranian state television was in fact a violation of the geneva conventions. have you looked into that? >> you know, that's something that i think these legal experts are arguing right now. it's clearly something that iran should not have done. it was something that they did
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to further their own narrative especially amongst the hardliners in iran. and, you know, it's again for us i think we've got to be very happy that our ten sailors are safe, they are out of any kind of harm's way and we've got to make sure that we look at what happens so that no other sailors or service members operating within this region are put into that kind of position again. >> lessons learned. got to learn the lessons to make sure you're absolutely right it doesn't happen again. congresswoman tulsi gabbard of hawaii. thank you very much for joining us. >> thanks, wolf, aloha. >> to you as well. coming up, the actor sean penn is defending his meeting with the mexican drug lord known as "el chapo." he insists his interview didn't lead to "el chapo" capture but mexican authorities say otherwise. is sean penn's life in jeopardy right now? plus, with just a little more than two weeks until the first caucuses, donald trump says iowa voters will soon tire.
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donald trump is back on the campaign trail today following a bruising republican presidential primary debate. the republican front-runner repeatedly clashed with his closest rival senator ted cruz. our senior white house correspondent jim acosta is
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following the trump campaign for us today in des moines, iowa. what's the latest, jim? >> wolf, two weeks and some change to the iowa caucuses. donald trump is now setting his sights on winning the state. he's urging voters to show up on caucus night, a sign that after a lot of talk trump wants to deliver. donald trump supporters in iowa crammed inside this pizza ranch got a slice of the gop front-runner that voters don't see every day. >> so we have to get out. we got to win. >> reporter: looking to close the deal in this state, trump is doing the kind of person-to-person retail campaigning that iowans crave. >> i'm going to be here so much in the next two weeks you're going to be sick of me. >> no big arena event on this trip, instead, trump took questions from a small crowd and warned them the conventional wisdom that his supporters won't show up on caucus night. >> people say you want to do well in iowa, that way in the end if you come in second or
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third or fourth, you know, you can say i want to win iowa. we have a great relationship with the evangelicals, like fantastic. and with the tea party and with everybody in iowa. >> reporter: pointing to the positive reviews of his debate performance, trump made no mention of ted cruz and their clash over the texas senator's eligibility to be president. >> the fact is there's a big overhang. there's a big question mark on your head. and you can't do that to the party. you really can't. you can't do that to the party. you have to have certainty sdpl well, listen, i've spent my entire life defending the constitution before the u.s. supreme court. and i'll tell you, i'm not going to be taking legal advice from donald trump. >> you don't have to. >> reporter: when cruz -- not a lot of conservatives come out of manhattan. >> when the world trade center came down, i saw something that no place on earth could have handled more beautifully, more humanely than new york.
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>> reporter: trump suddenly had some unlikely defenders from the new york daily news telling cruz to drop dead ted to hillary clinton who tweeted, just this once trump's right. >> is cruz going to beat you here? >> no, no. >> reporter: back at the pizza ranch trump sounded confident and seemed finished with cruz. >> are you going to counterpunch ted cruz after last night? >> i think i've already done that. >> reporter: now, donald trump didn't actually sit down and eat any pizza at that pizza ranch, but his campaign was quit to note that he had some slices waiting for him on his plane. and en though trump is gone for the day, he is renting out a movie theater here in des moines for his supporters to watch a showing of the new benghazi film, 13 hours of the gop front runner is expected tock back in iowa next week. wolf, donald trump looked like he was on cruise control out here. >> going to spend time in iowa and new hampshire for that matter in the next few weeks. jim acosta, thanks very much. dig deeper in today's top political news. joining us our chief political correspondent dana bash.
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senior politics executive editor mark preston and chief political analyst gloria borger. your take, gloria, last night's debate, who was the big winner? >> trump. i thought it was the best debate that he has had. he seemed the most comfortable. he -- i don't think cruz touched him on the so-called birth question, the natural born citizen question. he had a couple of lines pointing out that trump was political, shocking. but i believe on the new york values issue trump did very well. as mark was pointing out before we went on the air, it may play well in iowa, but to a national audience eventually if cruz were the nominee i think it would be a problem. >> is the birther issue between trump and cruz only getting started? is it over? where does that issue stand? >> there's no question that it's only getting started. for the mere fact it's what donald trump is using to just batter back at ted cruz who is his biggest rival right now for this nomination. i mean, if you talk to people
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out in iowa or new hampshire, they're torn between donald trump and ted cruz. and the reason why is because they see them both as outsiders and anti-establishment folks. but even if ted cruz does win the nomination, okay, if he does go through, we've already seen one lawsuit filed by democrat today. there are going to be a slew of lawsuits all across the country. who knows what happens. >> just being out this week, earlier this week with donald trump in new hampshire, at that point i just kind of worked the crowd and asked people if they thought it was a big issue or not. the idea that ted cruz was born in canada. and i didn't get anybody telling me the answer is yes. everyone said, no, and these are trump supporters. but, you know, that might be the case. but that combined with now donald trump reminding people that ted cruz got a loan from goldman sachs, these are kind of buzz words that iowa caucus goers and potential cruz voters in new hampshire are not used to hearing about ted cruz. even though he, you know, is, you know, ivy league educated guy who clerked on the supreme
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court, they kind of think of him as he's sold himself as one of them and as a pure conservative outsider. >> well, an anti-elite. >> an anti-elite and establishment. >> if you look at his whole resume, it's elite, elite, elite, you know, princeton, harvard, clerked on the supreme court, worked for george w. bush, his wife worked at goldman sachs. >> he worked at a very elite law firm. >> exactly. so, you know, he may play non-elite on the campaign trail. >> but he's definitely elite. >> he's got the pedigree, absolutely. >> can i add to one thing again sitting here thinking about this, it's because ted cruz is judged by traditional political issues. you know, like we're thinking and talking about ted cruz and all these things that could hurt him. donald trump he's a billionaire. he's somebody ivy league educated and it just doesn't matter. there's nobody more elite than
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donald trump. the rules don't apply to him. and they apply still really to everybody else. >> on the issue of ted cruz lamenting new york values and trump's very passionate, very emotional response which was pretty effective, i thought, last night. you saw -- we showed you the new york daily news cover basically among other things there it is drop dead ted. bottom line says go back to canada. tough words. hillary clinton's tweet just this once trump's right new yorkers value hard work, diversity, tolerance, resilience and building better lives for our families. this issue like the birther issue i assume is going to play out for a while as well. >> for viewers out there that can hear my accent, i'm clearly from boston and have my own issues with new york when it comes to sports teams. however, a lot of people said donald trump won the fight. the macro sense he won the fight, the dog whistle was blown and it was blown really loud from ted cruz to the voters in
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iowa, the voters in new hampshire and the voters in south carolina. and he was very specific last night when he said no, donald, when i'm talking about new york i'm talking about socially liberals, pro abortion and pro gay marriage those are the folks who will decide who the winners out of iowa, new hampshire and south carolina. >> more than anything else cruz has run a tactical campaign. he's kept his eye on the ball. right now that ball is iowa. and you're right. those are the people he is talking to right now. i think in the debate setting however, you know, i think that trump did well. how it plays in iowa we're going to have to see. >> even ted cruz while he was being bashed very discreetly, not so discreetly, but he was being bashed by donald trump, krou saw ted cruz start applauding as he was being hit hard by donald trump. i know that's a pretty unusual moment when one candidate is hitting another candidate and
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the candidate being hit starts applauding. >> he was clapping for the people of new york. >> donald trump was supporting the people -- >> no, there's no question it was a weird moment. >> weird? >> the other moment that was even more weird i thought was when donald trump was finished, ted cruz who is a master debater, he was speechless. he had nothing to say. he just sort of sat there with a smile saying, okay, you know what, in his head you could see the wheels turning. i'm just going to let this go. >> he said what he had to say to the voters of iowa. then he let it go. >> you're exactly right. >> when it comes to strategy though ted cruz knew he was in a split screen. ted cruz has done enough of these. so when that moment came up and he started applauding, he was pro american. >> applauding new york values at that moment. >> when your wife has worked at goldman sachs and when you have a loan from goldman sachs, which is in new york -- >> and citi bank. >> let's talk about goldman sachs sort of iconic in new york, wall street investment banking, it's hard to derive new york values when your income sort of comes from there, or used to until she left her job.
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>> and donations. >> and donations. >> all right, guys, standby. there's a lot more politics to discuss. take a quick break. much more right after this. ♪ ♪virgin islands nice ♪ ♪so nice ♪so nice, so nice ♪ spend a few days in the u.s. virgin islands and return with a lifetime of experiences. that's virgin islands nice. ♪so nice, so nice ♪ ♪ those who define sophistication stand out. those who dare to redefine it stand apart.
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the race for the democratic presidential nomination room is growing tighter by the day. polls show bernie sanders now within striking distance in iowa, pulls a significant lead in new hampshire. we're back with political
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experts to discuss, gloria, it's a very tight race. and it looks like the rhetoric is heating up dramatically on some sensitive issues. >> you think so? i think they took a look at the polls which are tightening. hillary clinton is a little scared. and i think that you see the number of people who say they're uncommitted is almost doubled for example in the state of iowa. and so the rhetoric is heating up. and i think that hillary clinton got a bit of a boost from vice president biden when he said that bernie sanders had credibility -- >> thanks to your interview. >> well -- thank you, on the income inequality issue. and she's changing the subject now to the question of how is bernie sanders going to pay for his health care proposal? and so she's trying to kind of just, you know, assert differences between them and make it clear that she's, a, electable, and, b, has more solid proposals that are actually more doable in the real world. >> i think it's dangerous what she's doing. >> dangerous for hillary
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clinton. >> yes. i mean, look, you know, i understand and i've talked to some hillary supporters who agree who think that, you know, i mean, obviously they got -- in fact one said to me this afternoon, they got to throw everything out there and see what sticks because the numbers are changing in bernie sanders' favor. but, you know, to kind of potentially push away the very liberal voters you're trying to bring in by disparaging him for, you know, wanting to expand health care which a lot of liberals want to do to build on obamacare, certainly not do away with it, it's curious. >> some of her aides are worried that if she does get the democratic nomination and she's still the front-runner, let's be honest nationally, she's going to need that progressive wing, the liberal wing of the democratic party to actually show up on election day to make sure that she wins. and if she overly antagonizes the bernie sanders supporters, there's a problem. >> right. and she has to win cleanly so as not the types or
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progressive part of the party doesn't say she's not one of us and maybe stay home. in the end i think they will come out and vote for the democratic nominee. but to gloria's point and to dana's point here, the clinton campaign is worry about a snowball effect. they're worried that in iowa, which is a state that they were leading in, that they are now not leading in. yes, she is still a front-runner, but if bernie sanders were to win iowa, he is up 14 points right now in new hampshire, there's a snowball effect. and then it starts to go really, really fast. >> but to dana's point about, you know, getting your voters out and alienating the progressives, i keep saying this. this is not a persuasion election. it's a mobilization election. >> right. >> because the republicans are never going to agree with the democrats and that's just the way it is. and you've got to get your people out. and if she says to progressives, okay, i think -- and turns them off by the way she's criticizing bernie sanders, it is dicey. she's got to do it in the short-term. but in the long-term strategy
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it's tricky. >> let me play a clip. this is the president of the united states he was doing some youtube interviews today. and he was asked about the republican presidential race and specifically donald trump. listen to this. >> this early in the contest a lot of times you'll have people who are seen as front-runners. >> right. >> because they're noisy, they get a lot of attention. >> correct. >> over time voters take a careful look the closer you get to actually deciding on a president everybody gets a little more sober. it's less entertainment and it's a little more -- you know, this is serious business. this person's going to have the nuclear code. >> this person's going to have the nuclear code, raising, you know, the notion, dana, that donald trump could have the nuclear code, if you will. >> sure. but he's also talking about the traditional parameters of politi politics, which donald trump just defies all of them. so he's absolutely right which is why i think everybody
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especially and including republican leaders here in washington and establishment republicans across the country could not believe, would not believe that we would be where we are two and a half weeks out of iowa and donald trump is still ahead. >> we have a lot more politics coming up ahead, guys. >> i think we should sign obama on as a contributor. he has really great analysis. >> we're also getting new reaction from the actor sean penn on his controversial interview with the drug lord known as "el chapo." also tonight, cnn has learned that authorities are investigating whether "el chapo" provided funding to a tequila company owned by the mexican actress who helped facilitate the meeting.
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the actor sean penn is breaking his excellence, defending his trip to mexico to interview the drug lord known as el chapo. he was captured by authorities one day before the article was published. you're getting more information, brian, what are you learning? >> his comments are upsetting mexican officials. one official telling me some of penn assertions are nonsensical and childish. the actor vigorously defend his secret meeting with el chapo. saying he was trying to start a conversation about the futility of the war on drugs. the actor sean penn breaking his silence about his meeting with el chapo facilitated by cate dell castillo. instead of bragging he may have helped bring down one of the
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world's most wanted men. he's adamant his meeting did not lead to el chapo's capture. in an interview with cbs news, penn calls that assertion from mexi mexicocon officials a myth. we met with him many weeks earlier in a place nowhere near where he was captured. >> as far as you know you had nothing to do with his recapture? >> the things -- here's the things that we know, we know that the mexican government, they were clearly very humiliated by the notion that someone found him before they did. well, nobody found him before they did. we're not smarter than the dea or the mexican intelligence. we had a contact upon which we were able to facilitate an invitation. >> penn claimed he and delaware castillo had ditched their cell phones and other electronics prior to meeting with el chapo in the mexican junglement tonight penn is leveling his own charge, saying mexican officials
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are actually trying to set him up. >> do you believe that the mexican government released this in part because they wanted to see you blamed? and to put you at risk? >> yes. >> they wanted to encourage the cartel to put you in their crosshairs? >> yes. >> are you fearful for your life? >> no. >> a mexican official tells cnn that claim is quote, absurd and nonsensical. the official says the mexican government would have too much to lose if they put penn's life at risk. but former dea operations chief michael brawn believes penn's and dell castillo's lives could be in danger. >> one or more of the key leaders within the sinaloa cartel are absolutely infuriated by the fact that the visit by sean penn and ms. dell castillo contributed to chapo guzman's arrest. >> cnn has learned dell castilo
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is being targeted by mexican officials. a law enforcement official says mexican authorities are investigating whether el chapo provided funding to a company owned by dell castillo. >> so far, no response from dell castillo or her representatives to that investigation. and as if this story could not take another bejizarre twist. we're learning of the involvement of another popular mexican actress in this case. the attorney general's office there is investigating whether that actress helped dell castillo facilitate the meeting. the officials say they're good friends and she's from el chapo's home state of sinaloa. >> you're learning there is concern among law enforcement authorities there could be other consequences for sean penn. >> form recall dea operations chief michael brawn tells us even if the top sinaloa cartel leader doesn't order a hit on
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happening now, breaking news. hotel attack u.s. troops are poised to go in as gunmen open fire and take hostages. stand by. we'll have a live report. staged by iran, u.s. sailors reveal more information about their hours in captivity and how they were pressured to act while the camera was rolling. it's raising more doubts tonight about why iran showed this video to the world. raining money. bills fly in dramatic new video of a coalition air strike targeting isis and its massive stockpile of cash. biting the apple. after ted cruz condemned so-called new york values he's getting a one two political
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punch from donald trump and other east coast democrats. we want to welcome our viewers from around the united states and the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in the situation room. we're following breaking news right now. gunmen storming a hotel in africa that's very popular with the westerners. we're told u.s. troops are now on the site. and they may be preparing some kind of rescue operation as the crisis unfolds. also tonight, the obama white house says there is ample reason to distrust iran, just hours before the iran nuclear deal may take effect and days after ten u.s. sailors were held by iranian regime elements. video of the sailors in captivity may be adding to that distrust right now. cnn has learned members of the iranian revolutionary guard corp
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apparently chorographiced the video telling the sailors to act happy while they were being recorded. this as the obama administration waits for verification that iran is complying with terms of the agreement. international inspectors could release that report as soon as tomorrow. tonight, secretary of state john kerry is heading to vienna for talks with the foreign minister. here in the united states there are growing concerns about mow iran will spend billions of dollars. it stands to gain in the coming days when the deal goes through. i'll ask a congressman about all of that. he's a leading democrat on the house armed services committee. our correspondents and analysts are also standing by as we cover all the news that's breaking right now. up first, the breaking news. let's go to cnn's robin creel. she's joining us from nairobi. we're learning about a terror attack not too far away. what's the latest you're getting about what's going on?
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>> reporter: it has gone 11:00 p.m. on friday night in the capital. that is where an ongoing hostage situation is unfolding. we are told by the media has been informed on the ground by the bekeno foso police that an assault is eminent. an elite commando unit are preparing to enter the hotels and the restaurant where these attackers are apparently holed up. i can tell you there are u.s. troops report lade according to a journalist at the scene, u.s. troop and french troops special forces on the scene. we're not sure if they'll be involved in the assault or are there as an advisory capacity. >> we're talking about this hotel, it's called the splendid hotel. this is a hotel where usually there are westerners, we don't know, correct me if i'm wrong if
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any americans were there. but sometimes un personnel, other international diplomats go to the splendid hotel there. >> reporter: the splendid hotel, very popular with un staff, we're told as well as westerners. this would include americans, french, and various other diplomats and other folk who would be going through there. in any case it would usually be people in the ngo community. journalists perhaps would stay at this hotel which is in the center of downtown. the u.s. embassy has tweeted they are aware of the situation unfolding. the french embassy has tweeted they want their citizens to stay at home. we do understand there was some sort of intelligence ahead of this attack. the french telling their citizens, warning of perhaps an impending attack. this is the country right next door to mali which was the scene of a similar hotel siege that unfolded in december where
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dozens of people, at least more than a dozen people were killed in the capital of mali. gunmen entering the hotel and killing people using gunfire during breakfast. >> stand by. i want to bring in our chief national security correspondent j jim sciutto. >> this is an al qaeda, of course, affiliated group in north africa. part of really, a witch's brew of groups that are operating in this area. you might have heard of the group which carried on an attack a number of months ago on a western gas and oil facility in alg algeria. it's a group that has targeted foreigners in the past. one other thing i would note, this is a country as robin noted close to mali. it is considered an ally in the fight against tearerrorist grou
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in the area, both french and u.s. forces have operated there before because of that. it's one of many groups splintering of al qaeda at we've seen it. now affiliation with isis. they've had a competition of sorts with isis. it shows how far reaching al qaeda after it lost its home base. >> we're going to continue this story. but you're also following -- there's more fallout emerging about those ten american sailors who were captured and relatively quickly released. >> one of them it appears the capture and the videotaped capture we've seen. and the apology on camera by the commander this was stage masked it sounds like based on the accounts of the sailors. they were told to look happy in those pictures as they were shot by iranian state tv and broadcast there and indications that the commander of that naval
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unit was pressured to make an apology during that. but we're also learning new details about how they ended up in iranian hands. in particular it looks like there was a navigational error that put them inside iranian waters. as we know, they were surrounded and detained by members of the iranian revolutionary guards. tonight new information that the capture of ten u.s. sailors by iran was at time stage masked by their captors. the americans told to smile and look happy while they were being filmed. their commander u.s. military officials tell cnn felt he had no choice but to apologize for entering iranian waters. >> it was a mistake. that was our fault and we apologize for our mistake. >> despite images that many inside and outside the military find humiliating. administration officials continue to argue that the final result, the sailors' release in less than 24 hours was a successful end to what could
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have been a far worse situation. >> i don't think there's any reason for anybody to be embarrassed. if we had followed the advice of some of the republican critics of the administration, you know, we'd probably be in a bloody war with iran right now over our sailors. >> the image stands in sharp contrast to the expected implementation of a nuclear agreement with iran. u.s. officials tell cnn could come as soon as this weekend. implementation means the end of punishing economic sanctions. iran will be able to sell its oil and gas more freely on international markets. european and american firms will have many restrictions on doing business with iran lifted. and iran will regain access to some $150 billion in assets frozen overseas. u.s. treasury officials estimate tehran will net about a third of that amount. the administration says it's worth it to prevent iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon and
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it will continue to closely monitor iran's compliance. >> we do have the ability, if we detect that iran is not fulfilling all of their commitments, that we can snap sanctions back into place. >> still, critics say that recent steps by iran including test firing ballistic missiles in violation of un resolutions, show why the u.s. should be wary. >> they took ten american sailors and they're supporting the genocidal regime in syria. deep concern this regime will get hundreds of billion dollars to support violence and future terrorism. >> we learned a short time ago that secretary of state john kerry will be traveling to vienna tomorrow to meet with his iranian counterpart, zarif. they spent a lot of time across the negotiating table during the iran nuclear talks. not necessarily mean they'll announce implementation tomorrow. we're in the final stretch here that coming in the next several days. when that happens you will see the lifting of these punishing economic sanctions on iran.
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>> we'll see how zarif, he'll be reacting very favorably. the iranian revolutionary guard corp that's a wild card still. >> they've been critical of the deal. they listen to the supreme leader, he allowed the deal to go forward and they will listen to him. >> thanks very much for that report. let's bring in congressman john geremendi. before we talk about iran, what's going on with the sailors. you worked in africa you helped negotiate peace treaties, explain the influence of this terror group, these various terror groups in africa right now. you see what's going on, terrorists apparently have stormed the splendid hotel there in the capital. what are you hear? >> well, all that you've heard thus far. but it's not a surprise. we do know that throughout that entire area, that is the
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southern portion of the great desert, in that region, these terrorist groups operate. we've seen in northern nigeria, mali, all the way across to the west as well as to the east. somalia. this entire area is littered with these various terrorist groups. al they are dangerous. and they are very, very aggressive. fortunately, the united states government working with the french government as well as the local governments in the area is pushing back very, very strongly. and we must also carry out the economic and social development upon which a lot of this terrorism is able to breed and grow. >> a lot americans probably will be surprised there are american troops there on the scene together with french troops ready to get -- come to the assistance of the government and maybe storm this hotel where hostages are being held and terrorists may be inside. are you surprised there are u.s. troops there?
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>> no, not at all we've known that for some time. there was this thing called ebola. it was the united states military that provided the relief in that same region. and we have had troops in that area. we also provide a lot of what we call intelligence surveillance and recognizance using our high altitude aeroulate platforms. we major with the french who provide most of the ground operations in that area. we also provide transportation, logistics, and the intelligence surveillance. we do it all across that region. afra com being the military responsible. we don't have a lot of troops but we have some in various places including some fast response operations, perhaps that is what is taking place there in that hotel situation. >> now we know there are some
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american troops there as well. all right, congressman, stand by. there's a lot more to discuss, including the way iran treated those ten u.s. sailors. we'll have a lot more with the congressman when we come back. welcome. how you doin'? good how are you? so today you're gonna choose a mobile office. you can choose this chevy silverado which offers built in 4g lte wi-fi. or you can choose this ford f-150, which doesn't offer wi-fi. but to make up for it, we added a trailer, a satellite antenna, and dolores. hey fellas! (group laughter) what? so, which one do you want? i pick the chevy. definitely. or, get this dependable silverado all star edition with a total value of seven thousand two hundred and fifty dollars. find new roads at your local chevy dealer.
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we're back with congressman garamendi. it shows an air strike targeting some of the terror group's vast wealth. let's bring in barbara starr. you were the first to report on this strike. now we're seeing the video. explain what happened. >> exclusive video to cnn of this u.s. air strike two 2000
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pound bombs dropping in the middle of mosul iraq. iraq's second largest city. millions in isis cash destroyed. look at this video very carefully. you see a huge flutter of paper for some region, perhaps the direction of the blast, there was a flutter of cash that sprung up into the air. the military found that pretty fascinating. they're not really sure why it didn't get incinerated. the sent com commander said this was a good hit. they got the bulk of the isis cash depot. this is money it uses to pay its troops, finance its operations. these are the kinds of economic and financial targets the coalition is trying to hit to take isis' ability to finance those operations away from the organization. >> barbara, thanks very much. very dramatic video. the congressman is still with us. the strike against this isis
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financial center in mosul, clearly a blow to otheir operations. the criticism is civilian casualties occurred. even in the process of trying to destroy all this money there was civilian casualties are you okay with that? >> i don't think there's any choice but to go after isis in a very aggressive manner. there will be civilian casualties. we must keep in mind that the u.s. military, unlike the russian military is doing everything it possibly can to minimize those. we use almost always smart bombs which we probably used in this situation so as to not miss the target. these things do happen. we recognize that this is one dangerous terrorist group and we need to be very aggressive. we need to do the very best we can to target only the fighters. but there is going to be collateral damage. which means civilian casualties. that's just unfortunate. >> as you heard from jim
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sciutto, the iran nuclear deal could go into effect as early as this weekend. initially officials say 30 to $50 billion in frozen assets will be unfrozen. any way to track that money to make sure it doesn't go to terror groups, if you will out there? the u.s. government considered iran to be a state sponsor of terrorism. >> yes, there could be. but we're looking at a situation in which iran has some serious problems at home. my guess is they're going to have to spend a lot of that money on the infrastructure in the oil industry so that they can move their oil out of their country. and right now, with the price of oil, tanking, they're not going to be in a very wealthy situation. one thing we as americans need to keep in mind, and that is the other side of this equation. most of what i've heard in your reporting thus far is about the lifting of the sanctions and the
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effect that will have including the cash. the other side of this is that iran's nuclear potential is seriously degraded for the next decade and possibly the next 25 years. the centrifuges, 19,000. they've had to give up 14,000 of those centrifuges. they're highly itenriched plutonium has been shipped out. their reactor is fill would concrete. we have avoided a north korea situation in the iran country. so this is good news. the sanctions are not all lifted, only the sanctions having to do with the nuclear issue are lifted. all of the sanctions that have to do with the bad acting including where that money might go, those sanctions stay in place. >> congressman john garamendi, thanks very much for joining us. >> thank you. ahead, democrats find some rare reason to agree with donald trump after he fired back at ted
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cruz for his attack on so-called new york values. trump citing 9/11 and a very strong defense of his turf. >> we rebuild downtown manhattan and everybody in the world watched and everybody in the world loved new york and loved new yorkers and i have to tell you, that was a very insulting statement that ted made. what makes this simple salad the best simple salad ever?
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tonight the republican presidential race is boiling down to a two man grudge match. just hours after tensions between donald trump and ted cruz exploded on live television.
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the two candidates clashing on the debate stage, trying to so doubts about the other. who will it hurt? who will it help when iowans cast their first ballots of 2016 campaign just a little more than two weeks from now? let's go to our chief political correspondent dana bash. fiery debate last night, dana. we're watching the fallout. >> that's right. you mentioned two and a half weeks until iowa. because of that most candidates have already done what is a rite of passage in iowa presidential politics. stopping at a pizza ranch. but donald trump did that for the very first time today. not surprising since this campaign is anything but traditional. >> i'm going to be here so much in the next two weeks you'll be sick of me. >> energized by a performance last night. he went in iowa trump style. >> that way in the end if you
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come in second or third or fourth -- i want to win iowa. >> he's neck in neck in iowa with ted cruz. a political death match that spilled on to the south carolina match last night. >> donald's mother was born in scotland. >> but i was born here. >> on the issue of citizenship, donald, i'm not going to use your mother's birth against you. >> because it wouldn't work. >> cruz tried to turn the tables on trump who has been questioning cruz's eligibility to be president. >> back in september, my friend, donald said he had his lawyers look at this from every which way. since september, the constitution hasn't changed. but the poll numbers have. >> why are you raising this issue now? >> now he's doing a little bit better. >> but trump got the last word. going after cruz for disparaging his new york values. by invoking 9/11.
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>> and it was with us for months. the smell, the air. and we rebuilt downtown manhattan. and everybody in the world watched that was a very insulting statement. that ted made. >> for that trump got rare backup from new york democrats, including new york governor andrew cuomo and mayor bill de blasio. >> ted cruz insulted the people of new york. he owes the people of new york an apology. >> hillary clinton tweeted, just this once, trump's right. new yorkers value hard work, diversity, tolerance, resilience and building better lives for our families. the new york daily news was more blunt. saying, drop dead, ted. with the statue of liberty giving him the one finger salute. this afternoon in south carolina, cruz responded. >> i'm happy to apologize. i apologize to the millions of new yorkers who have been let down by liberal politicians in that state. >> as for trump and cruz their
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successfuled would be standard fair had the competitors not been embracing months ago. >> trump has been tremendously beneficial to our campaign. >> why do you have a bromance? >> i like him, he likes me. he's backed me 100%. >> that was then, this is now. >> so i guess the bromance is over. >> do you see ted cruz as your biggest competition now? >> not really. we'll see what happens. but certainly i don't see him as my biggest competition. i see him as competition. certainly he's competition. and others are competition. >> now, the former presidential candidate trump sparred with a lot lindsey graham threw his support behind jeb bush who is the senior senator from south carolina who holds the first in the south primaries. he believes bush is best prepared to be commander in chief. he likes marco rubio to you and he's 44 and not ready yet. >> i want you to participate in this conversation. i want to bring ing brianna
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keilar and the washington correspondent for the new yorker magazine. also joining us our cnn senior political analyst ron brownstein is the editorial director for the national journal. i want to put the cover of the new york daily news on the screen. it was very tough, drop dead, ted. the second line basically says go back to canada. were you surprised that ted cruz apparently in the debate last night wasn't better prepared to deal with this? >> i was really surprised. i also thought ted cruz was sort of surprised that ted cruz wasn't better prepared to deal with this moment. politics aside, i think when you look at ted cruz he's someone who is kind of almost chest like in that he's looking ahead, the wheels are kind of turning in a way. he really does sort of see around some corners i think rhetorically and he's always pretty prepared. watching him last night i saw the side of him that i haven't seen before. he seemed to be sort of, you know, spinning his wheels a little bit. and i thought he was really struggling to answer the
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question. i kind of thought he kind of kept going in circles a little bit as he tried to deal with that. >> our jake tapper spent some time with donald trump today. they had an exchange about cruz. let me play the clip and then we'll discuss. >> it's simple in that there's a cloud. you can't have a cloud. you can't pick a candidate that may have a 5%, 10%, 25% chance. by the way, since that happened, there have been lawsuits filed. you know that. it's been filed. i said lawsuits are going to be filed. the democrats are going to be filing lawsuits. they filed lawsuits. he's got a problem. he was born in canada. he was a canadian citizen until 15 months ago. if you can believe that. >> dual citizenship. >> he was a canadian citizen. >> he says he didn't know. >> he didn't know? he didn't know about his financial papers recolleeither. how are you going to be president if you don't know about a million dollars loan from goldman sachs. he doesn't known he was a
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canadian citizen? that's maybe worse than all of the other things we're talking about. >> pretty good line from donald trump about ted cruz. this war is going to continue between the two of them. >> absolutely. because the battle is on. you know, it's just a couple of weeks, and the people are actually -- it's not just talking anymore. people are actually going to go to the caucuses and vote soon. it is incredibly tight between the two of them in iowa. of course, it's going to continue to go on. one thing that i might just as a potential candidate -- i'm not sure if this is true when it comes to your argument that maybe cruz was caught flat footed. maybe he was. but maybe he also kind of knew exactly what he was doing. to try to give a message to i a iowaens his supporters there and decided to let it go. >> did it -- it does play well, right? like he said if you're talking about in south carolina this is something that's going to play well. i don't think you can really disagree with that. but i think he also delivered for donald trump a really genuine moment where even people
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who don't agree with donald trump at all sort of said, yeah, what he said. you know. >> donald trump is increasingly getting optimistic about winning the republican presidential nomination. and then going on and winning the presidency. he laid out he was on ms nbc and laid out a strategy. >> one of the best locations i have in the whole country is new york state. which is almost 50% of new york. can you imagine if we have won new york? nobody thinks about that when they do the polls. we'll win west virginia big, virginia, we're going to win places we're not norm -- nobody else is going to win. new jersey, pennsylvania florida, ohio. >> if he wins those states you know as well as i he will be the next president of the united states. >> that's right. well, it's a little easier said than done. look, the 11 states from maryland to maine except for new hampshire have voted democratic
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in every election since 1992. they are part of what i called the blue wall. could donald trump breach the blue wall? it would be a test of competing theories on how to win the white house. on the one hand he embodied the belief of many conservatives, they have not turned out enough of their base particularly blue collar white voters. trump is a magnet for those voters. even as trump's numbers have improved they remain negative under the key elements of the democratic numbers. trump would test -- if trump does become the nominee he does test the theory about whether this idea that conservatives can win the white house by turning out more of the base works, because in fact, if they win states like pennsylvania and new jersey and new york, where you have this large presence of the democratic coalition and tremendous negative numbers among them he would need heroic
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turn out numbers. >> as you know, south carolina, follows iowa, new hampshire, the first in the south primary as dana just said. today lindsey graham endorsed jeb bush. >> he had zero. he had nothing. that's number one. so not going to get any voters. i think it's a bad thing for lindsey graham. i think it shows -- i mean, why is he endorsing -- jeb has no chance. >> does he make a good point? >> well, it's not like there's a lot of votes from lindsey graham that are going to be to jeb. he didn't do very well. but he's a senator from south carolina. he has some important constituencies down there that look to him for leadership that support him. and you know, look, before this campaign, i would have said endorsements are really important. historically since 1980 the candidate with the most endorsements ends up being the
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nominee. the indicator of the party coordinating around one of the candidates. this cycle endorsements have been slow to come out. the establishment has been slow to rally around a single candidate. we thought that was going to be jeb bush early on and that momentum was halted if this leads to a reassessment of the jeb bush candidacy and other senators start following in graham's lead, then this will matter. >> but i think this is more about lindsey graham than jeb bush. this is the way he's buttoning his campaign. he didn't work for him, donald trump is right. he got nowhere. but he ran with the idea that he wanted to make sure from his perspective a strong commander in chief. and jeb bush is his guy. and so he wants to kind of stick with his brand, if you will. and finish off what he started. >> i think it's a real shot at marco rubio. lindsey graham. worked very closely with marco rubio on that gang of eight bill. they were friends and colleagues on that bill. >> he said he --
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>> same views -- >> very quickly, what do you think? >> i agree it's a shot at marco rubio and a sign of how difficult it has been for the establishment to find a horse that lindsey graham in the critical state of south carolina is rallying around a candidate that's sinking in the polls. let's see what nikki haley and tim scott do each have been critical of donald trump. can they find someone to make a stand behind in south carolina. at the debate last night there was not a lot of urgency from most of the candidates in making the case against the front runner. >> we have a lot more to discuss. much more politics coming up. also, the important note to our viewers, you can see jake tapper's interview with donald trump on cnn's state of the union this sunday at 9:00 a.m. eastern as well as noon eastern. we'll take a quick break, much more on the race for the white house when we come back.
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we're back with our political team. tonight hillary clinton's campaign is accusing bernie sanders of breaking his promise not to run negative ads the democratic presidential race is getting testier as the caucuses get closer and closer. our senior political correspondent brianna keilar has the latest on that. hillary clinton is ramping up her criticism of bernie sanders' healthcare plan. >> she certainly is because she's contending that bernie
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sanders cannot afford to put his plan in place without increasing taxes on middle class americans. now what has been months of these two candidates mostly playing nice. these final two weeks before iowa has turned into political punches that keep on coming. hillary clinton is unleashing a blitz of criticism calling sander' plan for a singer payer healthcare system unrealistic and expensive. today clinton accused sanders of withholding detail of how he would give all americans insurance through healthcare. >> basically what he's doing is saying, hey, we need to start all over again. let's tear it up and replace it. details to be forthcoming. and another big national divisive debate, which i don't agree with. >> sanders says he does not want to scrap obamacare. >> clearly, despite the gains of the affordable care act, we have got to build on it and go much
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further. >> some estimates say sanders' plan will cost taxpayers $15 trillion. so far, he hasn't offered specifics on how to pay for it. he says those details are coming before the iowa caucuses. >> we will come out to that. we'll have an outline for that certainly before iowa. >> with the race in iowa a dead heat and sanders commanding a big lead in new hampshire. he's dismissing clinton's stepped up rhetoric as sour grapes from her campaign. >> got mad at my today, got mad at me yesterday, mad at me tomorrow. they'll be mad at me for a long time. >> they're mad because of this. >> there are two democratic visions for regulating wall street. one says it's okay to take millions for big banks and then tell them what to do. >> an ad highlighting clinton's ties to wall street and his promise to break up the big banks. the clinton campaign accusing sanders of breaking his pledge not to runb negative ads a charge sanders rejects. >> you're looking at it public
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official, a u.s. senator, who was won elections and lost elections. i've been in a number of elections. i've never run a negative radio or television ad in my life. >> all of this as hillary clinton so-called not so secret weapon is stumping in iowa today. >> she's the best knowing how to find common ground and if you make her the standard ground. >> as the race tightens bill clinton so far is staying away from attacks like the ones he levelled at barack obama in 2008 an approach that ultimately backfired. >> this whole thing is a biggest fairy tale i've ever seen. >> both candidates are spending some time getting ready for the next debate sunday in south carolina. and everyone is going to be watching to see if this new combative tone we've been seeing between clinton and sanders finds its way on to the debate stage. >> dana you've spent time with bernie sanders. of you pressured him a few time
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for specifics how he'll pay for universal healthcare for americans. they won't have to pay premiums. he says he'll do that before the iowa caucuses, he's under a lot of pressure right now. >> he is. i filled in for jake on state of the union the first sunday in january, asked him about it he said we're going to get it. on the night of the president's state of the union address asked him again he said oh, yes, we're going to do it. i know that you've been talking to some of sanders' campaign aides who say maybe not. >> are they saying that? that they might not -- >> his campaign manager was saying this won't necessarily happen about the iowa caucuses bernie sanders came out again and said it's going to happen. >> the bottomline it's two and a half weeks from now. we still don't know the answer. look, this is let's be clear, we know, this is something that hillary clinton's campaign is pushing extremely hard. but on this issue they have a point. the voters have a right to know how he's going to pay for something which is so -- such a
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huge program. >> right. he says he's never run a negative ad. the ad we just saw that sounded pretty negative. >> the second part of it was positive what he would do. you know, saying she took millions from wall street and going to tell wall street what to do. that is i guess objectively negative. it's not the most negative ad we've seen in this cycle. in 2008 when obama was running against hillary clinton they walked this line figuring out how far they could go because democrats like hillary clinton. their line was you had to raise issues about her subtly. you couldn't be too overt about it. not so subtle the voters didn't know who you were talking about. the ad gets the balance of that right. >> bill clinton hasn't gone negative on bernie sanders, at least not yet. one of the problems the hillary clinton campaign has you go too negative you might alienate the
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progressive wing. >> same thing the republicans are considering about trump. given the number of states in the house and senate democrats are likely to have after this election. debating whether and how you can afford universal healthcare is like debating like who is going to build an irrigation system on mars. it's not going to be politically plausible given the likely distribution of power in congress. look, there are real reasons for hillary clinton to be concerned. there are also i think some important limits to what's happening that haven't been discussed enough. the reason to be concerned is because sanders is expanding. he started as the classic what i call wine track candidate dependent almost entirely on support of upper middle class white liberalsism lo. he's beginning to expand to working class white voters. there are still two red flags or dividing lines he has to get past. he has not shown he can appeal to minority voters who will matter much more as you move past iowa and new hampshire. 40% of the total vote. even in these polls showing him
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ahead in iowa and new hampshire they still show her leading by about 15 points among self-identified democrats. his lead is dependent on overwhelming numbers among independent voters. as john mccain learned in 2000 when he had a similar profile early in that profile it's hard to win a party's nomination unless you win the voters from seems to have gone a little more negative on bernie sanders. is that a strategic decision? >> i do think it is. i wonder if we're going to see a little more of it. i think it's a natural role for chelsea because she is being a surrogate for her mother. but it's also one that we've never seen her do before, so this is why i find it fascinating. back in 2008 i remember she had that one comment where she said to someone who brought up kind of the past, if we can call it that, that's none of your business. that was the sharpest moment that we saw from her. when she took on bernie sanders on health care, i thought it was really interesting because bill clinton hasn't done it. in 2008 it completely backfired. this is a fair -- i haven't seen
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a fairy tale like this kind of comment. he dismissed then-senator boek winning south carolina saying, jesse jackson won it twice, obviously he didn't go on to be president. i think with bill clinton out of that role it's interesting chelsea seeps to be co seems to into it. >> it's almost like this family business and to become a made person you've got to go negative on the opponent. >> you'll definitely get in trouble with that comment. >> this is the first time she's had to do this. she's watched her parent dozen this her whole life. >> i don't think i'm giving them too much credit, bernie sanders is getting the youth vote, chelsea clinton is younger. for her to make that comment, they think it might help. >> all right, guys, good discussion, thanks very much. much more news coming up right after a quick break.
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it's gotten squarer. over the years. brighter. bigger. it's gotten thinner. even curvier. but what's next? for all binge watchers. movie geeks. sports freaks. x1 from xfinity will change the way you experience tv.
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♪ beth, i hear you calling.♪.s ♪ but i can't come home right now... ♪ ♪ me and the boys are playing.♪. ♪ ... all nig♪t text beth, what can i do... [siri:] message. pick up milk. oh, right. milk. introducing the newly redesigned passat. from volkswagen. it may be the deadliest sport in the world. it's called b.a.s.e. jumping and it's the subject of a new cnn film. here's cnn's martin savidge. >> let's do this. >> reporter: b.a.s.e. jumping is the world's most extreme and
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forbidden sport. no wonder hollywood loves it. in the newly released warner brothers movie "point break," six b.a.s.e. jumpers jump 60 times to create one amazing scene. >> it doesn't look real but it's almost too spectacular. but it is all real. when you see a person a foot off the ground, they're a foot off the ground. >> reporter: it's a long way from the late '70s when the father of b.a.s.e. jumping strapped a movie camera to his head and dove from a cliff in yosemite. >> back in the day you jumped this on your head. >> reporter: three things are fueling the sport's popularity, two of which have nothing to do with jumping. >> now we can put forward facing, you can do what's called the unicorn cam where there's a pole, you can film your head and your body flying through stuff -- >> reporter: relatively inexpensive mini cams such as go pros allow b.a.s.e. jumpers to capture their stunning death-defying stunts and they share their video with the world. >> two rigs so you can do --
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>> reporter: b.a.s.e. jumping's wing suit. >> you wear it almost like a coat? it looks like that. >> reporter: the wing suit gives modern b.a.s.e. jumpers more maneuverability, transforming what was once just falling into flying. >> you're flying at 100 miles n hour down through the trees and over the ground and out into the beautiful swiss valley. there's nothing like it. >> reporter: all three advances have made more people want to take up the sport. as its popularity rises, so does the death toll. in what was already perhaps the world's deadliest pastime. >> almost eight or nine of ten b.a.s.e. jumpers who would die in b.a.s.e. jumping would be -- that would be associated with flight. >> adrenaline isn't the only thing propelling b.a.s.e. jumpers, there's also the lure of big money from corporate sponsors. companies like breitling and red
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bull pay extreme athletes to push the envelope. perhaps the most extreme jump of all. from the edge of space. karl danish who started all of this died on a jump in 1984. but b.a.s.e. jumpers think he'll be thrilled to see how the sport he helped start has taken off. >> karl would love where it's gone. i think he'd also be very interested to see how many people are in it and how many people want to do it. >> reporter: those who do it say b.a.s.e. jumping is not about living life on the edge. but going over it. martin savidge, cnn, boulder, colorado. >> please be sure to watch the cnn film on b.a.s.e. jumping called "sunshine superman" sunday night, 9:00 p.m. eastern. immediately after that, please be sure to join me for a democratic debate special as hillary clinton, bernie sanders, and martin o'mally square off in
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the democratic presidential debate in south carolina. thanks very much for watching. i'm wolf blitzer in "the situation room." "erin burnett outfront" starts right now. breaking news, a hotel under attack by al qaeda militants. gunmen firing, taking hostages. we're learning it has turned deadly. dead bodies. the situation ongoing at this moment. the latest on this breaking story this hour. and the fight getting uglier in the race for the white house. ted cruz issuing a so-called apology for his attacks on donald trump but isn't an apology at all. sean penn speaking out for the first time since the capture of drug lord el chapo. has the controversial interview put penn's life at risk? let's go "outfront." i'm erin burnett. "outfront" tonight we begin with breaking news. al qaeda gunmen storming a hotel after a firef


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