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tv   CNN Tonight With Don Lemon  CNN  January 25, 2016 11:00pm-12:01am PST

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if you reduce avoidable hospital readmissions you can share in those savings. and the "new england journal of medicine" did an article about four weeks ago and said, i'll be damned, it actually works, we can dial up wellness, we can reduce the expense here, and that's the future, i believe, and every state has a role to play in moving that way because clearly we're still paying too much for health insurance. our system's called an all-payer system. we have a rate setting commission, and we're able to replace the institutional profitability, i mean the hospitals aren't going bankrupt by any means, but we're able to put wellness at the center. and that's what we need to do as a country to bring down the high cost of health care. [ applause ] >> thank you, daniel. another question for you. jenna bishop, she's from drake university, she says she's undecided on what candidate she's supporting and she has a question about young voters for you. >> well, it's still early. there's six days. >> hi, governor.
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i'm 23 years old. and i care about a lot of issues, other than just the cost of college. i'd like to know what issue you think should be most important to young voters and why. >> thank you. great question. i have put forward a plan for debt-free college within the next five years. and as the one candidate among the three of us with 15 years of executive experience, we went four years in a row in my state without a penny's increase to college tuition so you can check out my plan for that on my website, but you know what i believe is the biggest issue that i think you should be concerned about as a young person who has more time on this planet than i do, and that is climate change. [ applause ]
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climate change is the greatest business opportunity to come to the united states in 100 years. and i am the first candidate in either party to put forward a plan to move us to a 100% clean, electric energy grid by 2050, and create five million jobs along the way. and this is another one of those instances, chris, where iowa is look what you've already done in your state. 30 to 35% comes from clean iowa wind which wasn't there 15 years ago. and the good thing about those big component parts is you are too darn big to import them from other countries so you have to build them here. and it's a big, and it's a big differentiator among the three of us. and we're all, we're all decent people, we all want to do the right thing for our planet, but there is a generational perspective here, and we're not
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going to get to 100% clean, electric grid with all of the above strategy more than the moon with all of the above strategy. it was an engineering challenge and we are up top this as americans. incrementalism, half steps, splitting the loaf, that's not going to get us. and that's not what your generation wants. you want the straight truth and face our challenges fearlessly and make this new reality ours. >> what works for you, you like the answer? >> i think that's great. i think the environment's huge, obviously, especially for those of us that are going to be living a lot of years, hopefully. so thanks. >> hopefully we'll still be there. >> arnold woods, he is the president of the des moines naacp, air force veteran in vietnam and undecided. your question, sir. >> yes, i am undecided. and question i have is because of the extreme number of our military personnel returning from war zones, combat zones with ptsd, what is your feeling toward re-establishing the
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military draft? and for those who are not deemed worthy to go to military draft or to be drafted into the military, do you have any options for them where they can serve our country for a couple years, prior to going to college? >> hey, thank you. i have put forward in your state 15 strategic goals to move our country forward again. to rebuild the truth of the american dream to get wages to go up, to make college more affordable and debt-free within the next five years. cut drug overdoses in half in the next ten years, gun deaths in half in the next ten years, but one of the goals is to cut youth unemployment in half in the next three years. and i proposed to do that by making national service a universal option for every kid in america to serve their country in environmental restoration or in public health or other avenues in addition to the military. and i believe that that will not only allow our kids to go to college in a more affordable way, giving them an increased pell grant benefit, but i know
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it'll do a great deal to tap that goodness within the next generation and bring it forward. bring their ethic forward. let me talk about veterans because another one of our -- my strategic goals is to full employment for the veterans of ours who come home from iraq and afghanistan. we do a very poor job of transitioning our veterans back to civilian life. and i have found, as a governor, attacking this problem, that the key is, employment. talking to our veterans about employment. there is absolutely no hand-off between the defense department and veterans affairs, let alone our state departments of veterans affairs. and in fact, on the dd-214 the discharge form that veterans fill out, there's not even a box on there for an e-mail address. and a lot of our veterans become ghost people. we might catch up eventually at
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the hospital. we might catch up with them at a county jail. we're a better nation than this, and we need to have a transition program so that no veterans slip through the cracks and make the first goal so we can then get to the post-traumatic stress issues, mental health, and other things. first goal needs to be for employment because every person needs to be needed. and we need our veterans back here, every bit as much as we needed them abroad. >> got another question for you, governor. debora plumber from drake university, undecided. has a question about the economy. >> good evening, governor. >> hi. >> do you have any specific plans to grow be the economy at a rate that will increase job growth for those, so that those who are long-term unemployed or fallen out of the workforce will have an opportunity to get back in? >> sure. yes. let me talk about our economy. prior to president obama's good
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work, and he's done great work, saved us from a second great depression, from the recklessness and greed on wall street. our nation's creating jobs again, and we're the only species on the planet without full employment. jobs are important. without jobs, nothing works well. here's another thing that doesn't work well in america, unless it's going in the right direction, and that is wages. for the first time this side of world war ii, 70% of us are earning the same or less than 12 years ago. so, as i look at this, i believe that we need to first and foremost remember that our economy is not money. it is people. it is all of our people. and we need to restore common sense wage and labor policies that make wages rise again. things we used to do, democrats and republicans together, all the time, like keeping the minimum wage above the poverty line. paying overtime pay for overtime work. how about this? the promise of equal pay for
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equal work for men and women. making it easier for people to join labor unions instead of harder. and then, here's another one to make wages go up instead of being a drag on wages, let's get 11 million of our neighbors out of the underground shadow economy by passing comprehensive immigration perform. a pathway to citizenship. >> governor -- >> but there's -- chris, and two other brief ones on this. i'm the first candidate to put forward a new agenda for america's cities. america's cities are where we have some of the worst problems of structural unemployment and where we can do the most good with investment, mobility, mass transit, new era of workforce housing, cities the leading edge to the clean, green environment and squaring our shoulders to climate change and training
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people to actually be part of the retrofitting and the distributed energy future that is america's. >> governor. >> thank you. >> talk to the audience about points of contrast between you and senator sanders when it comes to the economic plan. so much is made of him being a self-described democratic socialist. do you see yourself as that different from him when it comes to the economy? >> yeah, look, my story is not the story of a democratic conversion. my story is the story of a democratic upbringing. and my parents taught me that the stronger we make our country, the more our country can give back to ourselves and to our children. and so i believe in fair market american capitalism. and i also, as part of those 15 strategic goals, believe as woodrow wilson believes that freedom -- economic freedom also means freedom from monopoly. i would agree -- [ applause ]
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and i would actually agree with senator sanders in this sense, chris. we have reached the point where there's been such a concentration of corporate wealth and power in the hands of so few that it's taking opportunity out of the homes of the many. and whenever that happens, there's only two paths forward, and only one of them is good. and that is a sensible rebalancing based on the common good we share. we need to push back on these concentrations of corporate power, wall street, big banks, but other places as well. you know here in iowa, a farmer told me that 12 years ago, they used to have about a dozen packing houses. now they only have four or five. hog farmers are more productive than ever, but getting a lower price than ever. our economy is an ecosystem, you know, and the center of that ecosystem is a stronger middle class. in other words, the stronger we make our middle class, the more our economy grows. and that's what we've lost track
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of in these 30 years of trickle down economics. the more our workers earn, the more they spend, the more our economy grows. and so, no, i will say this though, chris. i think that -- i do believe that the fundamentals of american capitalism are still wrong. but we need to shake ourselves out of this trickle-down nonsense that says concentrate wealth, remove regulation, and keep wages low. low wages for america is not an america that's working. we need wage policies to make wages goes up again. >> gentleman standing up is brian carlson, student at drake university. he's leaning towards supporting hillary clinton. he says he wants to talk about discrimination in the workplace. and he has a question about it. what do you have? >> last year's supreme court decision granting full marriage equality was truly monumental for the lgbt community across the nation.
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but we still face a hard battle ahead. especifically in the areas of employment and housing. in many states, we still face discrimination. i was wondering what would you do as president to help us to acquire full equality in those areas on the federal level? >> i believe that the genius of this american experiment of ours is that in every generation, we take actions to include more people, more fully in the economic, the social, and the political life of our country. that's the broader arc of american history. we've yet to arrive at a perfect union, but every generation, we have the opportunity to make it a more perfect union. in my own state, we were one of the very first to pass, at the ballot, marriage equality. i also passed a transgender anti-discrimination bill in the state of maryland as well.
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and it's interesting, you know, the common ground we found to get these things done was this. it's really about our kids. it's about all our kids. and there were some people in maryland who said we might not be able to pass marriage equality. and we made the argument all about the truth that there is dignity in every child's home. and every child's home needs to be protected equally under the law. one of the most powerful beliefs we share is our belief in the dignity of every person. that's what's motivated me and the common good that we share. and i will do everything in my power to move us forward as a nation and make us more inclusive in every possible way i can across the board because that's what makes us stronger as a country. thank you. >> governor, you were talking about farming earlier and the status here in iowa.
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we have a question about that. this is janet linderman, president of the iowa farmers union. she's leaning towards clinton, but she's a fourth generation farmer and she has a question. >> first i want to the say, i love that you mentioned the problem of market concentration in the ag sector. >> yeah, not good for family farms, is it? >> not too great. not nearly as many as there used to be. my question is about beginning farmers. i'm a beginning farmer. the average age of farmers in the united states right now is about 57 years old. and that number goes up a little bit each year for beginning farmers. a group that includes a growing number of veterans, women farmers like me and other groups. we sdo have some opportunities with innovative business models that include more diversified farms, more sustainable farming enough of us. there's not nearly we know that lot are going to be retiring in the next decade and there aren't enough people to replace them. my question is, after decades of rollout migration and farm consolidation, what would you do
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to provide opportunities and invest in a new generation of family farm for the country? >> yeah, thank you. >> i think this is a big, big part of the future for rural america. sustainable economies. the ability to consume and to grow and to do that within the footprint of this place that we call home. and so, i would like to work with congress, and i plan to work with congress to do more in the farm bill to reduce the barriers of entry to new farmers as they start up. huge capital costs that go into buying the land and buying the equipment, but it's also what's best for keeping our rural economies, and it's best for america. so i've seen in my own state a whole movement to the buy local movement and the sort of farming that you describe. we need to do more as a nation
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to encourage young farmers to go into farming, to reduce those barriers and those capital costs, even at the same time that we push back against the concentration of monopoly power in the agricultural sector, and that's what i intend to do. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> all right. another question for you. we know that you are working this whole state and going for the gold. you're in it to win it. i understand that. but you can make an argument that you are the most important person that we're going to have in this room tonight, whether or not you win or not. here's why. as you know, there's a 15% rule in a lot of these caucuses. if you don't have 15% in the room, those women have to go to a different candidate. so if you don't have that, and your followers have to go somewhere else, the people who support you, what is your suggestion to them?
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>> this sounds like a process question. look, here's my suggestion to them. i have put together a terrific organization where we have put together a terrific organization all across this state, chris. and one of the reasons why -- why the polls back east can never figure out how the caucuses work is because it's a very organic thing. my message to the o'malley supporters across this state is this -- hold strong at your caucus. hold strong at your caucus because america's looking for a new leader. america's scanning the horizon. we cannot be this fed up with our gridlock dysfunctional, national politics and think that a resort to old ideologies or
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old names is going to move us forward. i tell my people, hold strong. i know this is a tough fight. but i've always been drawn to it tough fight. i believe the toughness of the fight is the way the hidden god has of telling us we're fighting for something worth saving. our country's worth saving, the american dream is worth saving, this planet is worth saving. america needs new leadership, and i need the o'malley supporters out there on caucus night to hold strong and move forward like iowa does. and not back. >> all right, let's bring in benjamin, grew up in iowa. he's now a law student. he's leaning towards supporting you on monday. he has an important question for you. >> yes, governor o'malley. this is going to give you a chance to wrap up your main pitch. we'll give you 30 seconds, same thing we gave to senator sanders, but go ahead. >> right on cue with that, you're aware that national polls continue show you trailing secretary clinton and senator sanders. so to those that are still, you know, undecided like me or maybe just less informed about
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politics, on top of what you've already talked about, what's the last thing that you would try to tell them to convince them that you are in fact the best candidate for the democratic party? >> thank you. this is what i would say. i would say that time and time again in the history of the state of iowa, iowa has found a way to sort through the noise and to sort through the national polls and to lift up of a new leader for our country. at times, when that was critical and essential. that's what you do eight years ago when you lifted up barack obama to lead our country forward. and we need to build upon his good work by continuing to move forward. and, i am the only -- i am the only one of the three of us who has a track record, not of being a divider, but of bringing people together to get meaningful things done. raising the living wage, making college more affordable. creating jobs, healing wounds and divisions. that's what our country needs right now. we are a great people.
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we are a generous, and we are a compassionate people. and we are far better than the sort of fascist rhetoric that you hear spewed out by donald trump. the enduring symbol of our country is not a barbed wire fence. it is the statue of liberty. and we -- [ applause ] so i'm not here to praise you, iowa. i'm here to challenge you. lift up a new leader because you can change the course of this presidential race. you can shift this dynamic on caucus night. i know you can. i've seen you do it before. there is nothing so divided about our national politics that it cannot be healed with the renewed faith in one another and new leadership. that's what i have to offer. my candidacy is in your hands. do with it as you will. but i think it's important in order to move our country
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forward that, once again, iowa lift up a new leader so we can make america the compassionate, generous, and inclusive place that we need it to be. thanks. >> thank you. >> all right. thanks to governor o'malley. hillary clinton is in the wings. she's ready to face these iowa voters, next. want to get their hands on. if they could ever catch you. real milk vs. almond milk ingredient spelling bee lecithin lecithin. l-e-s (buzzer sound) your word is milk. m-i-l-k milk wins. ingredients you can spell.
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welcome back to the cnn democratic presidential town hall here at drake university in des moines, iowa. as you've seen, tonight is something different. it is a chance for the voters of iowa to question the candidates directly. next up, former secretary of state hillary clinton. [ applause ] >> how are you? >> good to see you. >> great to see you. hi, everybody. >> interesting weekend for you. "boston globe" endorsement. "des moines register" endorsement. maybe the best accolade, president obama gave an interview. talked about this race. seemed to get more into it than he has in the past. he said, you're, quote, wicked smart.
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knows every policy inside and out. sounds like an endorsement to me. >> well, i was really touched and gratified when i saw that. you know, people here in iowa remember, we ran a really hard race against each other. and then i had the opportunity when he asked me to serve as his secretary of state, and it not only was a great working relationship, but turned into a real friendship. and he knows how hard the job is. and he knows it firsthand. so i really appreciated what he said and how he said it because it was a positive reflection on what we have to get done and how hard it's going to be. and, therefore, the stakes in the election are really high. and i think that's what voters are beginning to really tune into starting here in iowa.
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>> he says also in there, you get undue criticism. by the way, i have some regrets about my campaign and some of the things we did. was that surprising? >> yes, that was surprising. you know, i really appreciated him saying that because he had that great line, which i love. i think he said something like, you know, she had to do -- he said i was like fred astaire, she was ginger roger doing it backwards in high heels. and i thought that was a really -- a very sweet remark, but you know, i understand that you get into the arena and you are going to get pummeled and pushed and criticized. i wouldn't be doing it if i didn't think it was absolutely necessary to try to build on the progress that we've made. that we've made under president obama against great odds, and that we've got to do everything
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we possibly can not to let the republicans rip away the progress and turn us backwards. that would be such a loss for our country. we need to build on it and go further, and that's what i'm trying to do in my campaign and talking about all the issues that i think are on the minds of the people i speak to across the state. >> and you get to do that tonight. we're going to get questions right from the voters. 2008, we're talking about. here you are again, another election. praise and promise coming your way, but another nail-biter -- >> right. >> -- with a self-described socialist named bernie. >> right. >> how did that happen? >> look, it's a great country, despite what one of the republican says. it's a great country, and we are all, on the democratic side, having a spirited debate about the issues we care about. i'm so proud -- you've seen my two democratic opponents, and the three of us have run a
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campaign talking about the differences we have on issues. that's totally fair. that's what we want you to know. the other side is not talking issues, they're talking insults. so i'm proud of the campaign we've run and what we've put out there before the american people. and it's a tough campaign. and it should be because it's the hardest job in the world. you have to pick a president and a commander in chief, and you want to really vet the people that are running. and i'm really having a good time going around talking and listening to folks. on monday, the people in iowa get to be the first people in the world, chris, to express an opinion about who should be president and commander in chief, and what they want to see as our nominee to go up against the republicans. >> so let's do that right now. we have taylor gippel. leaning sanders, but has a question for secretary clinton. >> let me help you up here.
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>> it feels like lot of young people like myself who are very passionate supporters of bernie sanders. and i don't see the same enthusiasm from younger people for you. in fact, i've heard from quite a few people my age that they think you're dishonest, but i'd like to hear from you and why you feel the enthusiasm isn't there. >> well, i think it really depends upon who you're seeing and talking to. you know, today in oskaloosa, i spent time with about ten high school students who are enthusiastically working for me. i see young people across the state who are doing the same. but i'm totally happy to see young people involved in any way. that's what we want. and we want to have a good primary, to pick a nominee, and then we want to have everybody join together to make sure we
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win in november. which after all is the purpose of this whole campaign. and so -- you know, look, i've been around a long time. people have thrown all kinds of things at me. and you know, i can't keep up with it. i just keep going forward. they fall by the wayside. they come up with these outlandish things. they make these charges. i just keep going forward because there's nothing to it. they throw all this stuff at me, and i'm still standing. but if you're new to politics, if it's the first time you've really paid attention, you go, oh, my gosh, look at all of this. and you have to say to yourself, why are they throwing all of that? well, i'll tell you why because i've been on the front lines of change and progress since i was your age.
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i have been fighting to give kids and women and the, and the people who are left out and left behind a chance to make the most out of their own lives. and i've taken on the status quo, time and time again, i have had many, many millions of dollars spent against me. when i worked on health care back in '93 and '94, and i don't know if you were born then. i can't quite tell, but, if you'd been around and had been able to pay attention, i was trying to get us to universal health care coverage working with my husband. boy, the insurance companies, the drug companies, they spent millions, not just against the issue, but against me. and i kept going. and when we weren't successful, i turned around and said, at least we're going to get health care for kids. and we got the children's health insurance program working with both democrats and republicans, and 8 million kids have insurance because of that today. so you've got to keep going. you can't give up. you can never get knocked off course. that's my -- that's my hope for you and for all the young people who are getting involved this first time. don't get discouraged. it's hard.
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if it were easy, hey, there wouldn't be any contest, but it's not easy. there are very different visions, different values, different forces at work. and you have to have somebody who is a proven, proven fighter. somebody who has taken them on and won. and kept going and will do that as president. that's why i hope you'll reconsider. >> we have another voter for you to work on. elena dietz, an iowa native. first time caucusgoer, she's also leaning towards bernie but a chance with a question. >> great. >> secretary clinton, earlier this month, vice president joe biden said you are a newcomer to the issue of income and equality while praising senator sanders for his authentic voice on the issue. how do we know you'll keep this issue a top priority? >> i have the greatest respect for the vice president, but i think it's fair to say, i have a 40-year record of going after inequality. and not only economic inequality.
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racial inequality. sexist inequality. homophobic inequality. the kinds of things that go after people to put them down and push them back. so since i was a young lawyer, my first job in the children's defense fund, i took on the problem of juveniles in adult jails. what kind of inequality can you imagine than taking a child and putting them in with adult prisoners. we went right in to change that. i went after schools that were being turned into private schools that were really there because they wanted to escape integration in the south. i went by myself down to alabama to do investigation because, again, inequality stalks our education system. i was on the legal services corporation. i chaired the board. inequality's also not about being able to get a lawyer. you can't afford them. you can't stand up and have your voice heard and have your case adjudicated. i have a really long history of taking on all kinds of
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inequality. when i went to beijing in 1995 and said human rights were women rights, that was a statement about inequality. economic inequality, every kind of inequality you can imagine. now, when -- when you focus just narrowly on economic inequality, i've also been in that fight. i was in that fight during my husband's administration. and let's remember what happened there. at the end of eight years, we not only had 23 million new jobs, what was most important is incomes grew for everybody. not just those at the top. more people were lifted out of poverty. incomes rose, in the middle and working people. and today in knoxville, in my town hall. i called on a man, he said we never had it so good except when your husband was president because we tackled income equality and produced results. not talk, action, and that's
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what i will do as president. >> another question for you. secretary, dick goodson. he's the chairman of the des moines committee on foreign relations. he's likely going to caucus for you next week, unless you mess it up right here. >> i'll try not to. >> your question, sir. >> madame secretary, before i ask my question, i have a quick comment, and that is that i was a lukewarm person for you before the benghazi hearings. i watched all 11 hours, every second of it, and came away from that a gung ho supporter of yours. >> thank you. thank you. >> i woke up one night thinking that maybe i could see if donald trump was sitting here, maybe he'd punch gowdy out. okay. here's the question, practically all of the comments that have been said for both -- all three candidates tonight, about 99%, have been on some form of domestic policy. and yet, you know, as the former
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wife of a president and as the secretary of state that the president of the united states is going to spend more than 50% of his or her time on foreign policy issues. so therefore, i think it's important for the public to kind of get a sense of where you may be coming from across the board, philosophically. and the way i look at it is you could have a scale of say, 1 to 100, and on that scale, you would have none interventionists on one side and total interventionists on the other side as ten. as you think about all the issues that you've confronted as secretary of state, and then as the possibility of looking at issues into the future, where do you think you'll land on that scale of one to ten? >> i'll tell you what. i want to start by saying thank you for asking about foreign policy because you're absolutely right. in fact, president obama in his interview said something about that. he said, you know, you don't get to the pick the issues you work
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on when you're president. a lot of them come at you. they come in the door whether you open it or not, and even gave the example of working on a state of the union, being at the desk in the oval office when one of his aides came in and said the iranians have just captured two of our naval vessels and have taken our sailors prisoner. you can't say, oh, okay, don't bother me now. i'll deal with that later. you have to immediately be able to switch gears. you've got to do all aspects of job. so let me tell you how i think about it. i think it's imperative you do your very best, every president, and certainly, i will, to avoid military action. it should be the last resort, not the first choice. to use diplomacy, even if it's slow, boring, hard, to continue to persist and be patient to get results. and that you also should use the enormous capabilities that we have to project our values around the world. our cultural values, our
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freedoms, our human rights and respect for the dignity of all people. i want to give you two quick examples. when i became secretary of state, what president obama and i found was that the iranians were on their way to a nuclear weapons program. this despite all of the bluster from the george w. bush/dick cheney administration. they mastered the nuclear fuel cycle, built covert facilities and stocked them with centrifuges that were rapidly whirling along trying to create enough highly enriched uranium to have a weapon. now, our choices were, oh my gorks just turn our backs and just figure out that somebody else is going to do something or try to get up a new strategy. we chose the third. we said look, we've got to get the world behind us to force them to the negotiating table. so i spent 18 months putting together the coalition that
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imposed international sanctions on the iranians. that forced them, finally, to begin negotiating with us to get an end to their nuclear weapons program. to put a lid on it. it took 18 months to get the sanctions. it took me about another year to travel around the world convincing other countries to actually obey the sanctions. and then i began the negotiations. testing whether the iranians would actually come and seriously negotiate, and then secretary kerry and the president did a great job bringing the agreement into fruition. you cannot -- you cannot imagine how tense it was because a lot of our friends and partners in the region basically just wanted to end that program by bombing them. just bomb them. send them back a couple of years. just stop it. i spent a lot of my time explaining to our friends why that was not a good idea. and we got the negotiations successfully done. we did put the lid on. so that's how i thought about. another quick example, we had
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another unfortunate spate of rockets going from gaza into israel in 2012. i'm on the phone with the israelis. they're trying to knock them out of the sky with their missile defense system, but they're still landing, and everybody is really worried that, you know, one of them's going to hit a big group of people, take out a big building somewhere, so the israelis are telling me, look. we've got to go back in. we have to have a ground invasion again in gaza. i'm saying, no, please, don't do that. let's try to resolve it. we don't think we can resolve it. i flew from cambodia with the president to israel, middle of the night, go see the israeli cabinet, work with them on what they would accept as an offer, go see the palestinian president, work with him to make sure he'd back it up. go back to jerusalem, finalize the deal, fly to cairo, meet with president morsi, the muslim brotherhood president of the egypt, hammer out the agreement, announce it at about an hour before the deadline that we were facing.
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they got a cease-fire. there was no invasion. that's what you have to do. so, every situation is different. so i want to make sure i stay as close as possible to the nonintervention. that's why i say, no american ground troops in syria or iraq. special forces, trainers, yes. planes to bomb, yes. no ground forces. every part of this has to be done in accordance with values, interests, and our security in partnership with other countries. >> all right. two points of -- secretary, two points of pushback, one general, one specific. critics will say they see the obama administration which of course you were a part of as secretary of state as a period where now things are less stable around the world, certainly in the war on terror. specifically, senator sanders, earlier tonight said, yes, a lot of experience, but it doesn't always translate into the best judgment, and he cited your vote
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on the war in iraq. how do you respond to those two criticisms? >> well, first of all, i have a much longer history than one vote which i said was a mistake because of the way that that was done and how the bush administration handled it. but i think the american public has seen me exercising judgment in a lot of other ways. and in fact, when that hard primary campaign was over, and i went to work for president obama and he ended up asking me to be secretary of state, it was because he trusted my judgment. and we worked side by side over those four years. and think about where we were when he became president. as i just said, iran on the way to a nuclear weapon, which would have destabilized the entire middle east, created an arms race, the likes of which we have never seen. we had thousands of american troops in iraq and afghanistan. our best allies in friends in europe and asia were really put out with us because of the way they'd been treated by the bush administration and were very
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skeptical that the united states was a good ally any longer and wanted to leave the world toward peace, prosperity and security. i spent so much of my time getting back the confidence and the trust of our friends and allies around the world. so, i think we made a lot of progress. now, do we have a terrorist threat? yes, we had a terrorist threat on 9/11 before president obama took office. yes, we were attacked. so, this is not something new. this is a long-term challenge. that's why i've laid out a plan to defeat isis and the radical jihadist terrorist networks that i think has the best chance of achieving that. there is no time in human history where everything is going well. and we now live in a very interconnected world where we know everything that is going on. and where people look to the united states to help.
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so we have to be leading and that means we've got to be smart about how we try to assert our power so that it is constructive, makes a difference, and does lead to greater peace and prosperity. but i am very proud of my record as secretary of state and what we accomplished. not only on specific trouble spots, but advancing women's rights, advancing gay rights, advancing religious freedom, internet freedom, and so many of the other values that we hold dear. >> we have another question for you about the example that the united states provides. on our left, erin is an american muslim from outside des moines, served in the u.s. air force. she's undecided. she has a question. >> hi. >> hi secretary clinton, america today is formed by a very diverse group of people. and with the current rise in islamaphobia and the black lives matter movement, how can we make
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sure that the united states today, that we protect the constitutional rights of all groups of people with that marginalizing any one community, specifically as a mother of three young children, as an american muslim, how can i make sure that this country is the best place on earth to raise my family? >> thank you. thank you for your service in the military. >> it's my pleasure. >> and one of the -- [ applause ] one of the most distressing aspects of this campaign has been the language of republican candidates, particularly their front-runner, that insults demeans, denigrates different people. he has cast a wide net. he started with mexicans.
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he's currently on muslims. but i found it particularly harmful the way that he has talked about muslims. american muslims, and muslims around the world. and i have called him out continuously about that. it's not only shameful and contrary to our values to say that people of a certain religion should never come to this country or to claim that there are no real people of the muslim faith who share our values and to have the kind of dismissive and insulting approach. it's not only shameful and offensive, which it is. i think it's dangerous. and it's dangerous in several ways. it's dangerous because american muslims deserve better, and now their children and they are the
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target of islamaphobia, of threats. i've met a number of parents who have said their children are afraid to go to school because they are worried about how they will be treated. and we cannot tolerate this. and we must stand up and say every person in this country deserves to be treated with respect. and we must stand up against the bullying -- [ applause ] but there's another element to this that i want to mention. i was recently in minneapolis where i met with a big group of somali americans. and i sat down and talked with them, and they shared some of the very same concerns you just did. but they are also on the front lines of trying to protect their children from radicalization. they are on the front lines in minneapolis of working with law enforcement to make sure that what they see and hear, they report, in case there are any problems.
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we have to protect ourselves in america in a unified way. that means making sure our muslim friends and neighbors are part of us. they are with us. they are on the front lines of defending themselves, their families, their children, and all the rest of us. and the same is true with muslims around the world. we need a coalition that includes muslim nations to defeat isis. and it's pretty hard to figure out how you're going to make a coalition with the very nations you need if you spend your time insulting their religion. so, we need to stand up and point out how wrong this is. >> all right. we have another question for you, secretary. maria diaz, drake law school student who says she's deciding between you and senator sanders. maria, you have a question? >> hi. >> good evening, secretary. secretary clinton, when you are elected the next president of the united states, what will you say to republican voters?
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>> that i want to be the president for everyone. and i believe that is exactly what any president should do. you know, chris cuomo's -- chris cuomo's father said one of the smartest things. he said many smart things about politics. you campaign in poetry, you govern in prose. you know, you can say all the kinds of things you want in a campaign, and we are drawing distinctions with the republicans, and we should because i have very deep disagreements as i just pointed out with a lot of what they're saying and doing. but once the election is over, we must come together to work to solve the problems facing our country. that is what i did. i did it as a first lady when i worked, as i said, to get the children's health insurance program. i did it to reform the foster care and adoption system with one of the most partisan republicans in the house, tom delay. i did it in the senate.
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nearly every republican i served with co-sponsored legislation that i introduced and we worked to pass. and i did it as secretary of state. reaching out, talking with republicans all the time about what we were doing, enlisting their support, getting their advice. so, i know in order to deal with the problems i want to, to get the economy working, creating more good jobs, getting incomes rising, making sure we build on the affordable care act, get costs down, but improve it. get to 100% coverage. everything i want to do, i want to start from the belief that we can find common ground. and that is exactly what i intend to do. and i see my friend tom harkin sitting there, and he knows from his years in the congress, you always have to hope you can find common ground. you've got to bring people together, like he did. the americans with disabilities act. what an amazing accomplishment. and -- [ applause ] >> i have a question for you as a point of pushback.
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you were talking earlier about how it's difficult to form a coalition with people being insulting it's the same time. let's apply that to the democrats and republicans. you want to work with them, but you were quoted when you were listing people that you saw as adversaries, nra, health insurance companies, probably the republicans. >> yes. >> they did not like that when you said that. and it makes them feel that, well, secretary clinton doesn't like us. why would she work with us? understandably. >> well, it was tongue and cheek. and i consider them worthy adversaries, because they are, they have their set of objectives, we have ours on the democratic side. but that's why i gave you a short overview. i worked with all of them. you know when i'm actually in office, they say, really nice things about me. we have a whole, long list of the nice things they say, what a good colleague i am, how easy i am to work with, how willing i am to find common ground, then
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when i run, oh my goodness, it's unbelievable. so i have no -- i have no problem in saying, yeah, we have political differences. we're on opposite sides, but we're going to work as hard as we can. and here's what i know about how to get that done. it takes building relationships, and that is one of the hardest things to do in politics, over ideological and partisan lines. so i'm going to be just giving them all bear hugs whether they like it or not. we're going to get together. we're going to talk about what we can do. maybe we can get something done together. if not, maybe i can find that slice of common ground to find somebody who will work with me on achieving a goal that we want. so, that's the way the process should work. constantly looking for ways to make a difference and putting together the coalitions within the congress to pass laws. >> so what is it inside you that can separate the human feeling of doing the benghazi hearings, then going back to that same
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group of people and saying, okay, you know what, let's put that in the past? it sounds hard to do. >> well, i don't know. i came out pretty well, so i think it'd be very -- it would be very gracious of me to go back and talk to them. >> let's get you another question. zack piper, grew up in west des moines. he's undecided. >> kind of on the same issue as the bear hugs, i think one time they might have a hard time bear hugging with the other side and certainly a concern that a lot of democratic voters have at this point as far as going to the general election and looking forward to working with congress is the benghazi issue. so how are you planning on dealing with that going forward, not only in the general election, but also if you became president working with congress. >> well, look, this is only still an issue because the republicans want to keep it an issue. they know it. i know it.
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and i think it's very easy to answer, and as the gentleman who stood up before said, if you watched any of it, i answered every question. and at the end of it, the chairman said, no, we didn't learn anything new. because there was nothing new to learn. why? there'd already been eight investigations. most of them by republicans in the congress. the house intelligence committee, the house armed services committee. and what did they conclude? that there were problems that night, but, they were ones that we should look at, not from the perspective of placing blame or pointing fingers, but how do we make sure that never happens again? that is what i said immediately after it happened. that's why i put together an independent board to tell me as secretary of state what i needed to know and what we could do to fix it. and i accepted all 29 of their recommendations. and we were on the way to implementing them when i left, and that has continued. so i am well aware that for partisan political purposes this
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continues, but let me tell you why this makes me -- it makes me sad. it makes me sad because we've had -- we've had terrorist attacks many times before in our country, haven't we? and we've had american both civilians and military personnel the subject of attacks. when ronald reagan was president in 1983, our marine barracks, our embassy were attacked in beirut. more than 250 americans were killed. the democrats didn't make that a partisan issue. we were horrified. we were heartsick that americans doing the work they were sent to do, civilians and military, were murdered by terrorists. so, the democratic congress worked with the republican president to say what can we do? how do we fix this? fast forward, my husband was president. al qaeda attacked two of our embassies in tanzania and kenya.
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car bombs blew them up, killed 12 americans, and hundreds of kenyans and tanzanians. madeleine albright was secretary. she said we have to get to the bottom of this. she did the same as i did, commission an independent report. when the report came out, she made it public. i made the report i commissioned public. that's the only two times those reports have ever been made public. so, again, it was terrible. what can we do? how do we fix it? it wasn't the subject of this kind of partisan, media-driven attack. people wanted to come together. and even after 9/11 when nearly 3,000 americans and others who were working in new york city, the pentagon, on that plane that crashed in pennsylvania were killed, we formed a commission. we said, what went wrong? what can we learn? and then we moved on to try to do better.
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so look, i understand that they will try to make this an issue. i will continue to answer and my best defense is the truth, and that is what you hear from now until i'm elected president. >> on that issue, "des moines register" gave you an endorsement. they questioned your judgment when it came to the e-mail issue, and you know this, but for the audience in 2008, quote, when she says, when she makes a mistake, just say so. this weekend they said that's a lesson that you have not learned. yes, you apologized, but only when you needed to, not when you first could have. fair criticism? >> well, i think that, you know, look, i was delighted to get the "register's" endorsement. and it was a very generous one. and yes, i think that's a fair criticism. you know, i -- i had no intention of doing anything other than having a convenient way of communicating, and it
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turned out not to be so convenient. so again, we've answered every question, and we will continue to do so. but you know, maybe being faster, trying to scramble around to find out what all of this means, i probably should have done that quicker. >> you're willing to say it was an error in judgment, you should have apologize -- >> no, i'm not saying it was an error in judgment. nothing i did was wrong. it was not in any way prohibited -- >> not apologizing sooner -- >> well, apologizing sooner. as soon as you can, but part of the problem, and i would just say this as not an excuse, but an explanation, when you're facing something like that, you've got to get the facts. and it takes time to get the facts. so when i said, hey, take all my e-mails, make them public, that had never been done before, ever, by anybody. and so we've been sorting our way through this because it is kind of a unique situation. i'm happy people are looking at the e-mails. some of them are, frankly, a
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little embarrassing. you know, you find out that sometimes i'm not the best on technology and things like that, but look, i think it's great. let people sort them through and as we have seen, there is a lot of, you know, a lot of interest, but it's something that took time to get done. >> earlier tonight we played senator sanders your ad. >> uh-huh. >> uh-huh. >> asked him a question. one of the ads that you're putting out here in the run-up to the caucuses. we'll do the same for you. here's the senator's ad. ♪ ♪ [cheers and applause] ♪ >> i'm bernie sanders, and i approve this message. >> i think that's great. i think that's fabulous. i loved it. [ applause ]


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