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tv   Legal View With Ashleigh Banfield  CNN  February 25, 2016 9:00am-10:01am PST

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what mitt romney is asking should be asked by everybody on the stage tonight. the republican party should not accept a candidate to be their nominee that won't release their tax returns, given his shady financial past. mr. trump. it should come from every corner of the party, not just me and mitt romney. you're buying a pig and a poke if you don't do this. >> senator lindsay graham and his turn of a phrase. appreciate your time, senator. >> adios. >> thank you. and thank you all so much for joining us at this hour. >> eight and a half hours to go until debate time. don't miss a single minute. "legal view" with ashleigh banfield starts right now. live pictures for you from the university of houston. we've got them coming for you. it is the scene of tonight's republican presidential debate. feast your eyes, folks.
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it's going to be a barn burner. hi, everybody. this is "legal view." but politics is really leading every single headline, it seems. we are just hours away from that last republican debate before the biggest single day of this presidential nominating season. and it may well be the very last debate with five men standing. will donald trump try to portray that this race is over? that his rivals are just no longer relevant? or will he try to put those rivals away once and for all? do the rivals continue to savage one another? or do they go all-out against donald trump? whatever happens, you're going to see it right here on cnn, beginning at 8:30 p.m. eastern time. and my colleague, sunlen serfaty, has a debate preview for you now. >> we'll be totally prepared. people have not done very well against me. >> reporter: the gop front runner is set to face off with his four remaining rivals tonight in the last debate
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before super tuesday. >> so far, everybody that's attacked me has gone down. >> reporter: donald trump already has more than double the number of delegates than his closest competitors, marco rubio, and ted cruz, combined. >> there has never been a candidate like donald trump. in a whole lot of ways. >> reporter: trump notably absent from last night's fox news town hall hosted by megyn kelly, where the freshman senators continued to argue that it's only a matter of time before his ballooning lead pops. >> we're the only campaign in a position to beat him on super tuesday. to win the nomination. >> the majority of republican voters are not supporting trump and obviously once this race begins to narrow, you'll see more of that support consolidating. >> reporter: this as mitt romney warns about a bombshell to come in trump's tax records. asking all of the candidates to release them. >> tax returns are very complicated. i have many, many companies. i have, you know, tremendously -- i have a very complex system of taxes.
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but we'll make a determination over the next couple of months. >> i'll release the remainder of what we have this week. i've released already i think five years' worth. but look, the nice thing is i haven't made enough money that my tax returns aren't that interesting. >> i'll release them. they're not very complicated. >> reporter: up for grabs on super tuesday, cruz's home state of texas, the senator of the delegate-rich state securing the endorsement of its governor. >> we can't be fooled by pt barnum. the time for the clowns and the acrobats and the dancing bears has passed. >> meanwhile, at a rally in houston, marco rubio is now targeting trump by name. >> donald trump has actually alluded to the fact that he thinks parts of obamacare are pretty good. >> reporter: and that was a small but important shift from marco rubio who typically avoids taking on donald trump directly. now as the front runner tonight, donald trump will be right here at center stage, likely to take some fire from his rivals.
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sunlen serfaty, cnn houston. >> they get more exciting as we go from debate to debate. so that's why we're going in the republican think tank. jeffrey lord is a supporter and political director under ronald reagan. s.e. cupp is a conservative author and smart person. anna navarro. has plenty to say about everybody else. all three political commentators. i'm going to start with this little gem. you guys, you just heard sunlen serfaty talk about that infamous now 2012 endorsement the that donald trump gave to mitt romney. now he's dissing him, tweeting he's the worst politician ever. so we have seen that sound bite. but we went back and we did some unearthing of a tape. i sat down with donald trump right after he endorsed mitt romney. and it turns out, i didn't even remember at the time, i had
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asked him this question, guys, about personalty and character, and what that means to the presidency. i need to play this for you now. >> he's a great guy in person. he's got a great personality, family, everything. >> can you help him bring that to the little screen? >> i don't know. maybe it doesn't translate, but that doesn't make him bad in terms of what he does. he'll be a great president. you know, the sad part about the world in which we live, if you do well in television, you maybe can get elected to something. but that doesn't mean you're going to be any good at what the big picture is, which is running a country. >> reporter: i was shocked by the short hair until i heard that last part of the sound bite. and i want to play it one more time in case anybody missed it. listen to this. >> the sad part about the world in which we live, if you do well in television, you maybe can get elected to something. but that doesn't mean you're going to be any good at what the big picture is, which is running
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a country. >> i just have to open the floor to jeffrey lord. jeffrey lord? >> i just knew this was going to happen. >> you did? >> yeah. ashleigh, you know, in all seriousness, i really don't think this kind of thing makes a difference. i mean, the american people know donald trump. maybe they like him, maybe they don't like him. but they certainly know him. and i honestly don't think that things like this change anything at this point. i mean, after all, votes are being counted. he came in a close second in iowa. he won new hampshire, south carolina and nevada in blowouts. what's to say? >> okay. so s.e. cupp, i want you to weigh in on this. i'm going to hold up quickly three quarters of a page. don't worry about reading it. i just want you to see the size of the piece here that the "new york times" dedicated today to all of the things that could possibly slow the trump juggernaut. and s.e., nothing has worked. i don't know that any of these five things that the "new york times" outlined, i don't know
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that my interview from 2012 where he says, "tv can get you elected, but doesn't prove you're going to be good at running the country." does it make a whiff of difference, s.e.? >> it doesn't seem to with trump supporters. they don't see him bothered by the fact he's changed his mind, that he's said contradictory things, that maybe even outright lied about some things. they don't seem to care. they defend him, no matter what. but, you know, when mitt romney talks about donald trump releasing his tax returns, he's absolutely right. and that could be devastating for donald trump. if it had happened months ago, it's a little late for all of this stuff to just be unearthed now. i mean, we haven't even gotten to the fact that donald trump is sitting as a witness in a fraud suit against him, where he's accused of defrauding thousands of students out of money at trump university. we haven't even gotten to that yet. and he's already won three states. so i think the time to really talk about trump's baggage, and he's got plenty of it, was
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probably a couple months ago. i don't know at this point that he's stoppable. and people have been talking about it for plenty of months. in fact, even howard stern interviews are unearthed today with him raiding women, and making these derogatory comments about women. but no one seems to mind. let's talk about good old fashioned politics then. maybe that's what might be the strategy that could work. and maybe not. so anna, here's the deal. there is a letter that's come out from a congressman today from the office of representative trent franks, and he's asking -- he's pleading, and he's got a whole bunch of undersignatories, as well with colleagues of his for cruz and rubio to do something about donald trump, to unite, to somehow figure out between these fellas, one of you take the top of the ticket, the other take the bottom of the ticket, and move forward and do something about this. is that going to make a lick of difference, and how would that work its way into the debate tonight, anna? >> well, look, i think that's --
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that would be called wishful thinking, happy thinking, maybe meditation-induced thinking. right now i think there's absolutely nothing that indicates that cruz and rubio are going to give themselves a big fat hug, sing kum ba yah and go out and hold hands and, you know, raise their hands together on a stage and say "we are your ticket, republicans." there's -- you know, they are bogged in a mano a mano with each other, which i think has distracted them from going after trump. cruz more than marco. i was happy to see that marco has taken that up since yesterday. i hope he continues on the debate stage. but look, the bottom line is this. nobody is dropping out. nobody is going to drop out before march 15th. when you've got polls that show that marco is losing florida. when you've got polls that show that cruz -- it's very tight in texas. and when you've got polls that show that kasich might have a chance in ohio, each of their respective states, nobody is going to drop out. and i think what we're going to
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have to wait it out through march 15th. and for those of us who do not want trump to be the nominee, hope and pray that that is still enough time to unify and consolidate the anti trump republican vote. >> certainly no one is going to be dropping out in the next few hours before that debate stage gets heated up. so guys, we've got five men still standing. it's a far cry from 17. jeffrey lord, that means, as each person drops out, and the field gets smaller, your talk time on a national debate stage on national television gets bigger. and it is no secret that this is not donald trump's strong suit. he's going to have to spend a lot more time making his case, and making sense. you can start with the bumper sticker comments that he's famous for. but then you've got to get down to the nitty-gritty. how is your guy going to survive when the debate gets more tricky? >> well, i think he'll do his debate in his style. and i think -- we've now had -- i've lost count of how many
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debates we've had. again, i'm not really sure, other than whatever drama is being played out between marco rubio and ted cruz, what this is going to do to donald trump. he's had everything, including the kitchen sink, thrown at him. and i just don't think it's going to make a difference at this point. >> yeah, ashleigh. if you remember one of the debates where donald trump clearly had trouble answering a question about nuclear triad, he didn't really understand what the question was. it doesn't matter. i don't think his supporters need him to be an intellect, a great intellect or a great political heavyweight who knows the ins and outs of who the kurds are. >> i think you're right. >> it just hasn't seemed to be that important. >> i think he single handedly redefined campaign strategies and politics. and i think it's stuck and it's going forward. and this is part of a new model. i have to leave it there, though, anna. i have to leave it there. but i do want to thank all of
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you and i'm going to have all of you back, as well. jeffrey lord, s.e. cupp, anna navarro, thank you. and don't miss the final republican debate before super tuesday. wolf blitzer, my colleague, one of the best in the business, is going to moderate this. it all takes place tonight, 8:30 p.m., pop your popcorn, get whatever you need. because it's going to be great. and the republican debate isn't the only epic battle before super tuesday. the dems have a big showdown, and that is coming in south carolina on saturday. it could set the tone for super tuesday for them. coming up, clinton and sanders, polar opposites, their approaches to court the palmetto state voters. you both have a
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you may have ibs. bloating? ask your doctor if non-prescription ibgard is right for you. ibgard calms the angry gut. available at cvs and walgreens. two days to the south carolina democratic primary, and there you have hillary clinton giving a speech in kings tree, south carolina, in a state where she is up 28 points on senator bernie sanders. the latest nbc wall street journal marist poll showing she comes in at 60% support over sanders' 32. let's listen. >> as president, what i want to do is to lift up programs like this at the local level, because we're going to need a lot of them. because if we're going to be
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diverting people, as you say, who commit low-level offenses, nonviolent offenses, then we need places for them to go. if people are addicted to drugs or alcohol, we need to get them into treatment and recovery, not just in the revolving door of going in the jails, sobering up, going out on the street, getting picked up again. that costs money and it doesn't solve any problems. so let's work together from the federal, state, local level. government, business, faith groups, community groups. let's all work together to try to lift up and help people. i think it's got to be our goal. thank you. this little girl right here -- yeah, here we go. i think somebody is coming around -- >> all right, so again. this is two days away, the south carolina democratic primary. i'm still amazed with almost a 30-point lead over her opponent. she is still spending time in that state. it is a south carolina is
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primary. it is critical for the democrats. and it means that both hillary clinton and bernie sanders are still crisscrossing that state, kissing the babies, clamoring for every single solid vote. maybe not. bernie sanders is not doing the same thing that hillary clinton is doing. he instead today is in -- what? yeah. northern ohio. and flint, michigan. and chicago. and that is a long way away from south carolina. it might have something to do with that whole -- i don't know, hillary clinton smashing him in the polls in south carolina. she's sending out her most popular corner man, too. former president of the united states, bill clinton. he's got campaign events in five south carolina cities today. and as well, he's doing the same thing tomorrow. this is also the state where african-american voters will really make a massive difference in how the headlines will be written after this primary. and with me right now, from columbia, two state representatives, both democrats, david mac endorses hillary clinton and caesar knight backs
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senator bernie sanders. gentlemen, thank you again. this is great. i love having you both on. you both have divergent opinions, but i want you both to weigh in on the bernie factor today. has he written off south carolina? has he just decided that it's too far a spread for me to bother? i've got to move on? and does that have an effect? david, i'll start with you. >> no, i don't believe senator sanders has written off south carolina. of course not. you look at the numbers and you may say that he has a deficit behind secretary clinton. let's bear in mind, when he first announced he was going to run for president, he was in the single digits, around 5 or 6% in south carolina. so for him to climb out of that hole and be where he is, speaks volumes to the fact that his message is resonating with african-americans and other members -- other residents of the state of south carolina. >> representative mac, why is hillary clinton still there? does she really need to be there? doesn't she have bigger fish to fry, super tuesday? >> well, i think it's being
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sincere, reaching out to people, being consistent with the message and the nation is watching. the nation is watching. so, you know, i'm a hillary supporter. and let me just say very quickly, i love bernie sanders. it sounds funny coming from me. but i really do. he's sincere, he's very good, has a good voting record. i think the key is, logistics. who is best able to get the job done? not to mention foreign policy, which is key, which he has experience in. so that's why i'm one of her supporters. but i believe that being here in south carolina sends a message to the whole country. >> so representative mcknight, if i can get you to weigh in on senator sanders' strategy as he moves into a really tough -- i'm just going to pop past your state. pop past south carolina, and saturday, and talk about tuesday. because tuesday is a big, big deal. and you need a lot of money to cover nearly a dozen states in super tuesday. you need a lot of ground game. you need a lot going on to make
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it through tuesday. what is his strategy to get through that big massive state coming down the pike? >> well, you also have to remember the fact that senator sanders did extremely well in fund-raising. in that had a ground swell of contributions that added up to millions of dollars. so his financial ability to cover the ground that he needs to cover for tuesday, i don't think he can call into question. his strategy is going to be basically to barn storm, to do what all persons who are running for president at these times do. they go from state to state. they don't sleep -- they hardly if ever sleep. if they do get to sleep, they do it on buses and planes. so i don't see that being a problem for senator sanders. he has clearly been up to the challenge and he's been doing that for a while now. so i am encouraged by it. so i don't want people to think at all that he's written off south carolina. i'm pretty certain he'll be here between now and saturday, and beyond that, he has a bunch of surrogates on the ground and a
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bunch of people that are in the game for him to get the message out. and i think it's resounding with people. >> well, i appreciate the both of you taking the time to come out and talk to us, representative david mac and caesar mcknight. thank you both. appreciate it. >> thank you. >> thank you so much. >> and coming up next, you thought the election was getting strange? first name being floated for a possible supreme court nominee turns out to be a republican. and senate democrats have been making a lot of noise outside the court at this hour. and when i say that, i mean literally. they are making noise on the steps of the supreme court. what are they saying? and why? tell you in a moment. ♪
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so just a few moments ago, there was a pretty sizeable group of senate democrats who decided to head outside, and not just anywhere outside, they went to the front of the supreme court building and actually stood on the steps and very vocally made some demands. they want the gop to meet with president obama's eventual choice for nominee for the supreme court. they want them to hold hearings, and they want them, most importantly, to have a vote. democratic senate minority leader harry reid spoke against the republicans, urging them to do their job, and what he says, stop ignoring the constitution. >> we felt it was extremely important to make sure the american people understand that we have obstruction that is on steroids. never in the history of the country has there been anything like this. there would be no hearings,
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there will be no vote. they will not even meet with the nominee, no matter who it is. >> right now, the latest buzz is surrounding this man, and if you don't know who he is, you're going to hear a lot about him. nevada republican governor, brian sandoval. a source confirmed to cnn that the white house is vetting that governor, although he himself hasn't actively been involved in that process. cnn's senior legal analyst, jeffrey toobin joins me now to sort of work through the arrest canty of how you get a new guy or girl. >> right. >> i want to read what the governor sent out, what his communications director sent out after this hit the news yesterday. they said neither governor sandoval nor his staff have been contacted by or talked to by the obama administration regarding any potential vetting for the vacancy on the united states supreme court. is that unusual that a potential candidate doesn't even know that he is one? >> not at this stage. because this is still very
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early. the first stage in vetting any supreme court would be nominee is to look at the public record. what opinions have they written. brian sandoval, among other things, is a former federal district court judge. they're going to want to look at any opinions he wrote when he was -- when he was a judge, which might be a clue to his judicial philosophy. frankly, i don't think brian sandoval has much chance at all of being nominated by barack obama to the supreme court. >> because he's a republican? >> well, not because of that generically. this is a guy who endorsed rick perry for president four years ago, who was a marco rubio delegate in nevada, just the other day. that is not what the democratic base elected barack obama to do, to appoint to the supreme court. i think this is mostly a matter of political positioning of the democratic party. mostly engineered at this point by harry reid, the senate leader, saying, look, we are going to consider republicans, we're going to consider democrats, we're going to consider a very diverse group of people. and we're open-minded and the
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republicans are slamming the door on anybody in advance. i think that's the frame the democrats want on this story. >> so when harry reid is saying, "i'm urging the republicans to stop ignoring the constitution," is it really that simple? i get it. the president's job is to bring forth those nominees and then the senate's job is to advise and consent. but technically speaking, there's no time line in the constitution. >> there's none at all. and -- >> you're not ignoring the constitution if they decide they don't think it's appropriate to give a hearing. >> the word hearing in connection with judicial nominations does not appear in the constitution. it's a long-standing tradition. what is an even longer-standing tradition is power politics. and the republicans recognize how important this seat is. this would be the fifth democratic vote if president obama gets someone through. for the first time in two generations to have a democratic majority on the supreme court, the republicans just aren't going to do that. now, they're inventing many
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reasons, they're saying it's too late. they're just not going to do it because they can run out the clock. and that is too all appearances what they're going to do. now, the democrats have -- >> i'm not so sure. there are things such as recess appointments. this is not devoid of the potential for a recess appointment, is it? >> it's pretty much devoid of potential, because there actually has to be a recess. and since the republicans are in control of the senate, there was a supreme court case last term about recesses, which defined recesses very narrowly. so they can keep the senate technically in session. >> yes, they can. but i don't have it in front of me, sadly, i can't quote it, but i recall just the language effectively said you can't just be sitting in your desk and doing cross word puzzles. you have to be doing official business and there has to be significance to it. am i paraphrasing appropriately? >> yes, but the republicans know how to keep the senate in session. it is not that hard to meet the standard that the supreme court -- >> three or four months? >> absolutely. >> no problem. working through the summer. >> you can work through the summer. and also president obama has not
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said he is considering a recess appointment. he wants what the senators call regular order. and this is really a political fight, which is do the republicans feel genuine heat from their constituents? do the vulnerable senators, senator ayotte in new hampshire. senator johnson in wisconsin. toomey in pennsylvania. do they say to mitch mcconnell, look, you've got to hold hearings, or else we're toast. that's the only check in this process. what the constitution says doesn't matter. >> and they truly feel they could be toast? >> i don't think they do at this point. that's why they're standing. >> they are in the position they're in, because they have held true to their republican base and that's what the base would want. >> but keep in mind, we don't have a nominee yet. if the president comes up with an extremely appealing nominee who seems reasonable, then perhaps there will be genuine heat on these republican senators. so we're still at an edge stage. >> so brian sandoval aside with
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the politics you laid out, maybe not the best image for a supreme court nominee. i'm not sure it hasn't happened before. but i keep hearing the name sri srinivasan and i have a feeling you probably know sri, right? >> i do in the. >> is there politics there that could come back to haunt? >> i don't think there are any politics that are a problem for sri srinivasan. he's a very accomplished young judge, very standard credentials for a supreme court justice. he clerked for sandra day o'connor. he's a judge on the d.c. circuit, the second-most important court in the country. he was confirmed 97-0, which is a -- >> does he have any inkling as to whether he is also being vetted? >> i don't think he does at this point. >> are you getting any hints? >> i'm trying. but i don't have it yet. i think sri srinivasan, jane kelly on the eighth circuit, paul watford on the ninth circuit. they are much more typical supreme court appointees rather than a sitting governor. it used to be there were politicians on the supreme
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court. but in recent decades, much less. >> well, you know what? as the whispers continue to circulate around d.c., i'm going to have to get you back and do a big long menu. jeffrey toobin, thank you. appreciate it. coming up next, tonight's republican debate is most likely the most important, and critical debate yet. i know i have said that before. but as we go through this contest, it keeps becoming more true. truly. we're just days away from super tuesday, and it could be a make or break time for candidates like ted cruz, who is hoping to catch donald trump before it's too late. and there is one big thing that could help him do it. it's called texas! we'll talk strategy in a moment. on the floor! everybody down! nobody move! on the floor! hey, do something! oh, i'm not a security guard. i'm a security monitor. i only notify people if there's a robbery. there's a robbery!
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jim some live pictures for you again, because the final republican debate takes place tonight before super tuesday for these five men still standing. that's a live picture of the hall in houston, texas. it's going to be moderated by wolf blitzer at 8:30 tonight. and you can see the people getting ready, last-minute touches for the big event. only one of these five guys will be on his home turf in texas. which votes on tuesday. five days. five days away. ted cruz is counting on texas to break his streak of third-place finishes in new hampshire and south carolina and nevada. pressure is on. but a brand-new texas poll should give senator cruz a little bit of breathing room. take a look at the numbers. monmouth university finds 38% of likely texas gop voters support their freshman senator.
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and donald trump trails 15 points behind. and donald trump is essentially tied within the margin there with marco rubio. cruz could take the lion's share of the texas 155. that's 155 delegates. it is surely going to help him close what is now a yawning gap. wow. look at that. ron nearing is watching ted cruz's prospects with great interest, because he just happens to be ted cruz's campaign chairman in california, the state with the biggest delegate jackpot of all. ron, thanks so much for being a part of the program today. first thing i need to ask you about is this piece of news that broke today about a congressman who is asking ted cruz and marco rubio to join forces. one of them take the top of the ticket, the other take the second place. and go against donald trump to try to stop the -- basically stop the momentum and the behemoth that is donald trump.
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any consideration to that? >> that's a nice idea but that's not what we're doing. ted cruz is running for president of the united states. we're going into super tuesday, as you described. his home state, where there is a comfortable margin, 15 points. we just got new polling data out today of marco rubio trailing in his own state of florida by 16 points or so. that's not good news for him. it's good news for us. and so we're on to become the nominee for president of the united states and then restore some republican leadership to the white house. >> that's a good point that you make. but at the same time, you cannot deny that marco rubio's pacs have spent more money in the state of texas than any other state that they have been fighting so far. and that's got to worry ted cruz, because home turf is not always a guarantee. >> no, it's not a guarantee. nothing is a guarantee in this election cycle. but you know, i was at the harris county republican party lincoln dinner last night with ted cruz, and i've got to tell you, the thousand republican
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leaders who were there and activists, this is thoroughly ted cruz country. he's on his home turf, great to have this debate here in cruz country, as well. so very confident about texas and also we know that we're going to do well on super tuesday beyond texas. as we move forward. marco rubio is a candidate with the problem. he doesn't have a pathway to victory. he doesn't have any states which he expects to win until florida, which is bizarre. because florida by the time the ballots are counted in florida, 60% of the delegates will already be gone. that's not a pathway to victory. we're bullish on the path that we're on. and the fact that texas is coming up quick. >> well, let me just ask you again. i'll go at this from a different angle. george bush's supporters have resoundingly been flocking to marco rubio, not necessarily to ted cruz. and george bush's supporters are numerous in the state of texas, as is george bush money -- or jeb bush, i beg your pardon. as is jeb bush's money. bush country, you can't deny that. and then you have the whole hispanic vote, too. and many of the rubio meetings
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and rallies have had a heavier influence of hispanics in their audiences than your candidate, ted cruz. that's got to be a concern. >> well, a couple things. again, the polls that just came out here in texas reaffirm senator cruz's strong position in the state. so we're -- so we've got that. in terms of where jeb bush supporters go, the polling data we've seen, you know, pretty detailed, shows that yes, a slightly greater number of jeb bush supporters went to marco rubio. but a substantial number of jeb bush supporters came to us. not by decisive numbers. so that's nothing. marco rubio cannot, you know, rest assured that this is going to, you know, change the dynamic for him. when he was asked a few days ago, where is he going to win, he didn't point to any super tuesday states, none of the march states, nothing, until florida. well, there simply are not enough delegates for him if he only starts winning then. so the question is, where can marco rubio win? we're going to do great in texas. marco rubio is not looking good in his own state of florida.
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that's a big problem for him. >> well, everything is big in texas and the stakes are too, without question, as we move toward super tuesday. ron nearing, thank you. i look forward to talking to you again. >> thank you. don't miss the final republican debate, folks, before super tuesday. wolf blitzer, my colleague, one of the best in the business, is at the held of it. it takes place, cnn tonight, 8:30 p.m. and coming up next, hail and 100-mile-an-hour winds. you heard right. 100-mile-an-hour winds. dozens of tornadoes, deadly storms, all leaving a path of destruction from the deep south all the way up to the northeast. the cleanup and the daring rescues you have to see to believe. next. hi, i'm here with some advice from the future don't buy makeup that settles into lines, it ages you. get simply ageless makeup it floats over lines and you look beautiful! simply ageless from olay... and easy, breezy... ...beautiful covergirl
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52 tornadoes were reported across the countries just since tuesday for the month of february. and it didn't just cost people their homes, it cost people their lives. seven now in total have died in just the last two days, and one of them was a 2-year-old boy living in waverly, virginia. there's a state of emergency now
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in virginia in counties also in florida and louisiana. and this morning, an incredibly close call for the united states coast guard off of new york's rockaway beach. take a look at these images. the coast guard boat actually nearly cap sizing, trying to save some fishermen in 10 to 12-foot waves. as bad as it looks, and that is pretty darn bad for everyone on board there, they were all okay. i don't want to be that guy, though. wow! man, talk about the bravest. there's the rescue right there. and you can see the size of those seas with that shot of the rescue basket coming to safe land. there is the gentleman who was rescued. poorermen fishermen have been struggling. chad, i live in connecticut, a long way away from virginia and where some of these tornadoes are spotted.
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i thought my windows were going to break last night at 9:45 at night. this weather has been unbelievable. what's going on? >> all wait to boston, about 4:00 this morning, everyone was awake in boston. whether your alarm clock was going or your dog was barking. because the thunder was everywhere there. it started out with a big low pressure center, a big jet stream dip, that we expect in march, april or may. but it happened in february. and so the warm air ran all the way up the east coast, ashleigh, and it made two instances of severe weather. on tuesday, in louisiana, mississippi, alabama. and then for yesterday, virginia all the way up almost to washington, d.c. it was very close, as storms were very close to your southern part of your viewing area, northern virginia. we get tornadoes all of the time. there is a tornado in america every month all of the time. in fact, we should have 29 in february on an average february. and it's not unusual to get big outbreaks, either. super tuesday, 2008, we had 86 tornadoes on the ground and 57
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people died. that was in a february. how did it happen? you need a big jet stream and we had one. you need warm air heading up the east coast. we had that. and you had cold air coming back down, pushing that warm air aloft. it's like pushing a hot air balloon up into the sky. severe weather here on tuesday, severe weather here on wednesday, thursday finally moving offshore. this severe weather will be well out to sea today. we won't have to deal with it on land, but we will have to deal with much colder air. the wind is blowing everywhere. the airports are slow and it's cold outside when you walk out there. it feels about 20 degrees colder than the thermometer, ashleigh. >> well, i think at last count i saw 2,800 flights were cancelled. but i think there's been more. that number may be old. chad, thank you, appreciate it. >> you're welcome. coming up next, you might just call this next one goliath versus goliath. that's the ceo of apple and he is not backing down in this. really big battle, i guess you
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"xfinity x1 lets you access the greatest library of oscar moments, simply by using your voice. live oscar sunday, february 28th on abc." the ceo of apple says if the government forces his people to crack open a dead terrorist's iphone, it's not just going to be bad for his company, it's going to be bad for all of us. right across the country. tim cook definitely not blinking yet in this staredown with the u.s. justice department. he's now demanding -- they're demanding that apple help unlock an iphone belonging to one of the san bernardino shooters. several of the world's biggest high-tech companies, facebook and google, they are standing by tim cook, and his decision to hold firm and fight back. cnn's money tech correspondent, laurie segall, is here to talk
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about this. before i even get to this battle, because there's just more that keeps coming out every day on it, i just think that they're in separate corners and not talking. and it turns out, oh, they're talking all right. apple is actually having nice meeting with the doj based on helping the doj in fighting with messaging against isis. and i can't quite figure out the disconnect here. >> it's something separate, but it's actually very interesting. they're dubbing this the madison valleywood project. and so it's about targeting anti propaganda targeting, bringing the best tech executives, advertising executives, to figure out how to counter target some of isis' messaging online. they have been talking about doing this for a while. so now we're finally seeing that coming to fruition. the irony here is this massive battle that's being fought between apple and the fbi. and you also have tim cook, who has really drawn a line in the sand. they're sitting on a phone that has lots of information. they're saying we can build the technology to get into it, but we're not going to do it. and you also -- in an interview last night, he spoke quote a bit about the precedent this would
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set if they decide this court by court. take a listen. >> there is no worse case than this case, but there may be a judge in a different district that feels that this case should apply to a divorce case. there may be one in the next state over that thinks it should apply to tax case. if there is going to be a law, then it should be done out in the open for people, so their voices are heard through their representatives in congress. >> and if congress decided that there's this small category, this was a terrorist's iphone -- if congress decided that, if the american people signed off on that, we would entertain it. >> no, let me be clear. at the end of the day, we have to follow the law. >> and, you know, what's pretty interesting here, he actually goes on to say, you know, if this were to happen, what if they asked us to bring an -- build an operating system with surveillance or with a camera? so what could be the effect of this? and this is a classic case which we have seen multiple times of
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technology playing -- policy playing technology. policy playing catchup with technology, which is an interesting case here, ashleigh. >> so, you know, i'm assuming that the only thing that is going to settle this is court. no one is blinking, there is not, as i understand it, much discussion going on. and people are really taking sides. some with the government. and it's all about security, both the fbi says this is about security, folks. and apple says this is about security, folks. >> it's all about security. >> if we build some beautiful machine to crack an iphone, that machine will be used against you. to crack your iphone and maybe, i don't know, maybe your home security alarm system or whatever else. this is -- this is as dangerous as they think it can get? >> i think that's the point here. this is an unprecedented case. because they're both saying this is about security. in the past, tech has helped law enforcement several times. but in this particular case, tech is saying in order to help law enforcement, we will be making the rest of the world less secure. so that's the point here. and i think that's what we're going to see play out in court, ashleigh. >> all right. so get your law hat on. there is going to be more
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conversations about this coming. laurie segall, thank you. appreciate it. thank you everyone, as well, for watching. do appreciate it. my colleague, wolf politiblitze doing the debate tonight so jake tapper is going to sit in for him and he's up next. hello. i'm jake tapper. wolf blitzer is on assignment. he's getting ready for tonight's big cnn republican debate in just a few hours. right now, it's 12:00 p.m. here in houston, texas. 1:00 p.m. in washington, d.c. 9:00 p.m. in baghdad, wherever you're watching from around the world. thanks for joining us. up first, we're counting down to the last republican debate before super tuesday. it could also be the last chance for donald trump's rivals to try to slow his momentum towards the republican presidential nomination. the stage is set for this evening's showdown. you're looking right now at live

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