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tv   At This Hour With Berman and Bolduan  CNN  March 3, 2016 8:00am-9:01am PST

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and the nfl will argue weather roger goodell had the right to suspend braley. he suspended him for four games after he was accused of using deflated footballs. a judge overturned the suspension. thank you for joining me today. i'm carol costello. at this hour with berman and bolduan starts now. >> it's my honor and privilege to endorse mitt romney. >> having his endorsement is an honor and privilege. >> it's a great guy. he has a great personality. >> we're expecting to go hard against donald trump. >> there's a bomb shell in donald trump's taxes. >> he brings it up because he lost. he's trying to remain relevant. mitt romney is a stiff who failed twice. this is cnn breaking news. >> there you have it.
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hello, everyone. >> breaking news this hour. an extraordinary moment in american politics. mitt romney, the republican party's last nominee for president will be taking the party's current front runner head on. the speech is billed as the state of the 2016 presidential race, and while romney may not describe it this way, it seems the state of the race is desperate. >> he's going after trump. that's what someone close to romney told me. going after a man whose endorsement he sought four years ago, and going after a man who four years ago he complimented for caring about the future of the country. we are live in salt lake city. it doesn't sound like romney is quite as delighted with donald trump as he was four years ago. >> reporter: no, that's right. this is shaping up as a junk
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yard dog fight between two alpha males in the republican party, donald trump, the man who looks like he may with b the nominee for the republican party, and the last nominee, mitt romney. i'm told by a source close to him that mitt romney sees this as a moment to stop donald trump. this is not advancing himself as a potential candidate in this cycle. it is not about advancing other candidates who are in the arena right now. as one source said, this is about how he did not want to look into the eyes of his grandchildren and say i did not do anything to stop donald trump. that's how personal this is for mitt romney. and, yes, they did essentially join forces four years ago. donald trump, i remember, i was there, endorsed mitt romney in donald trump on the las vegas strip. but things have changed. if you look at this excerpt, or a couple of them from the speech mitt romney to going to give in a few minutes, he says, quote,
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he's saying this about donald trump. he's playing the american public for suckers. he guys a free ride to the white house and all we get is a lousy hat. and then the other part that is also pretty extraordinary here, quote, donald trump is a phony, a fraud, his promises are as worthless as a degree from trump university. that's the business school that trump and his organization runs. it's been in controversy for the last week or so. now, we should point out, trump was almost offering a prebutt tall of romney's comments. last night he put out a tweet. here's the latest one. why did mitt romney beg me for my endorsement four years ago and then earlier this morning on the today show trump had more to say about the last gop nominee. here's what he had to say. >> he begged me four years ago for my endorsement. i mean, literally begged me, and he's a failed candidate.
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i mean, frankly, i backed him. he failed. he was a horrible candidate. he didn't know what he was doing. he disappeared in the last month before the election while in all fairness, barack obama is doing all the shows, jay leno. he was doing letterman all the time, and this guy disappeared. he went away, and he got killed, decimated in the election. >> now, while mitt romney is not here to endorse another candidate, we're told by sources close to him that he will say positive things about rubio. he will say positive things about cruz and kasich, but, of course, if you look inside romney world or inside marco rubio's campaign, you know there are people who have worked with one another over the years who like each other who are of the same gop establishment mind set. could a mitt romney endorsement for marco rubio come down the road? potentially, yes, but not today. that's not what this speech is about according to people close to romney. >> jim, we have his excerpts,
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some of them from what he's expected to say. do you know how long he's expected to speak? >> reporter: we're looking at about 20 to 30 minutes. i remember from covering mitt romney last time around, you know, this is not one of those free-wheeling, almost performance art speeches that you get from donald trump. this will be scripted. as you saw in the excerpts that were released overnight, he is not holding back, and i think we almost have to step back a little bit and take note of this moment. when was the last time, i don't think there ever has been a time when you've had the former republican nominee going after the person who looks like is going to be the nominee. we're at an unprecedented time. it goes to show you how much donald trump has angered people inside the republican establishment. >> all right. jim, thank you so how much. harry truman in 1960 had not flattering words about john f kennedy, but nothing compared to
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phony and fraud. very different. here to discuss, gloria borger and david chalon and dana bash. also with us is ryan williams. he used to work for governor mitt romney when he was running for president. gloria, it's a long way from delighted to phony and fraud. >> it is a long way, and i think there's no doubt about it when trump says that mitt romney actually courted donald trump for his endorsement last time. he did. i think the question that we have to hear answered today from mitt romney is has something changed in the republican party? you have a republican party establishment that has sat this out for quite some time, and now suddenly when it looks like trump may well be on the precipice of getting the nomination, you have a letter signed by 50 national security experts who have mitt romney
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coming out there on mass to try and say no, don't do it. what they don't have, and what they're not sort of presenting is a united force for somebody else to take on donald trump today. we don't have that. they don't have that. >> and ryan, as gloria points out, what people are looking to hear is has something changed in the republican party. do you think something has changed within mitt romney? tell us what you think is behind the decision for him to come out. i'm seeing written certain places this was a hastily organized speech. >> well, governor romney is an elder statesman in the party, and he cares deeply about the future of the party and the country. i think he's appalled from what he's seen from donald trump in recent weeks and the fact that he's now the front runner. he's clearly leading the party for the front runner, and the governor is concerned and wants to see if he can expose trump for what he is, a con man, a con
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artist who is playing everybody for fools. i think he's weighing in because he feels the time is right and it has to happen before it becomes too late. it's getting late right now. i think he wanted to chime in before things got too far beyond where they are right now. >> was he not a con man four years ago? was he appalled by that? i don't dount governor romney right now has problems with what donald trump is doing. the question is why was he willing to look past that four years ago and not today? >> well, he was certainly a controversial figure hour years ago and governor romney distances himself from the comments. but what trump has done since then has gone beyond what anybody thought anybody running for any candidate could get away with. playing fast and loose with the truth. not denouncing the kkk,
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retweetiretwee retweeting musalinei. it's far beyond where it was four years ago. i think that's why romney is speaking out. >> when it started coming out, everybody thought romney would be endorsing somebody. he's not going to be endorsing any candidate. that's all the reporting on there. why not, do you think? >> well, i think as jim reported, it's possible that at some point he will endorse somebody, but my sense is that he knows that right now it might not be that helpful to endorse marco rubio. maybe it would be helpful to do it right before the primary here in michigan because romney spent his childhood here. he did win easily even back in 2008. the primary, he's popular here, but unclear if that will make a difference.
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i think what we have to sort of take a step back and ask and i don't know if we know the answer to this yet, is whether or not what donald trump is arguing, and he has been doing it all morning, whether he has a point, which is, mitt romney was the nominee. but mitt romney lost for a lot of reasons. one of them was a lot of republicans stayed home. and trump is arguing that he's bringing those republicans who felt disenfranchised back into the fold because they feel like they have a voice in politician. he's not just a regular flig politician. if that is true and a real chasm within the republican party, what we don't know is whether or not mitt romney and his speech today, if it's going to make it worse. >> that's a fair question. let me put it to david who has not spoken yet. we don't want to leave him out. you don't have to go far to find people saying romney is the wrong messenger. he is the establishment.
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and if you're running an anti-establishment campaign, what better foil than to have mitt romney come out and say donald trump isn't the right guy. >> let's remember a couple things. romney took a hard look at the 2016 presidential race. he assessed the electorate and looked to see if there was a receptive electorate to him running again this time around. he chose and decided there was not. so that's one thing we should sort of put out there. and secondly, john, just as you're saying, if you look at all the election results that we've seen so far, and if you look at the tenor and where the energy has been in this process so far in the last year this election season, where are we finding, where do we see the clamor for the romneys of the world, the establishment wing here, to have some ability to sort of quash this energy that is driving the trump candidacy? i understand that many folks in the establishment lane think the
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trump candidacy is flawed and bad for the party, but it is clearly where the party is right now. and i just don't know what evidence we have that there is a persuasive argument yet to be made that has not been made about whether donald trump is a conservative or bad for the party. what is the new argument that's going to be made against donald trump that actually is going to be sort of well received by republican primary voters? >> but take a counter to that, who else is there if not mitt romney? >> there isn't sort of any immediate person that comes to mind other than mitt romney who is sort of a leader of the party -- george w. bush can't do it. his brother just finished his candidacy and failed. so i think it comes to mitt romney. i think he's been champing at the bit to do this for some
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time, and before new hampshire, we were all going to say is he going to endorse rubio, he can help him, and he didn't do it. i think now it's a difficult job for him. what he has to do is tell all these voters who are final ri coming out and voting. we see turnout numbers up in the republican party and say to them, wait a minute, you're supporting the wrong guy. and that -- you know, that's a difficult -- >> i wonder who is the audience today? >> well, all of us, obviously. and i'm not sure how many republicans who are trump supporters will listen to him. in fact, the obvious danger is, and they know this very well in the romney camp, that you could drive people into the arms of donald trump, because mitt romney is seen as establishment, but he feels, i think personally, that this is a speech he has to give. >> dana, what's the view for michigan? there is a big debate tonight and the people trying to beat donald trump will be on the
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stage. do you think they will use this? i can see this being complicated for cruz to say by the way, mitt romney agrees with me. >> that's a good point. >> well, i think -- let's take a step back. if mitt romney does what we expect him to do which is to praise the remaining candidates who are not donald trump, i think someone like cruz is probably going to have to pick himself up off the floor if he's praised by mitt romney. who would have thought that would happen when tchs cruz before donald trump arrived on the scene, that was the guy who was most despised by the establishment because of his tactics, because he says he has been the person who has been carrying the sentiment of voters out there in the conservative grass roots. i'm not sure -- you're right, i think it's going to be tricky for him and rubio. i think the broader dynamic on the stage tonight is going to be maybe less about romney and more
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about the fact that there are only four left on the stage which is kind of remarkable when you think about the fact that we had to have two debates, several times over, because there were so many candidates. four left, and there is one person who they have to take down, marco rubio, ted cruz, and john kasich, in order to get to the nomination, and that is donald trump. so that is going to be, by far, the biggest dynamic on the stage tonight. >> four is the fewest number, but it's still too many for all of them. they need to win know from that. >> stick around. there's a lot more to discuss, and romney will get behind the lectern shortly to deliver his speech. don't go anywhere. >> a lot can change in just a few days. and i say that because there's an important programming note for all of you. five states will be holding contests this weekend, this saturday, to be exact. kansas, kentucky, maine, nebraska, louisiana, now are on the clock very soon.
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we'll have live coverage all day long. john and i will be live starting at 11:00 p.m. eastern saturday night. >> the pregame is before that. >> join us. >> first, in just moments, mitt romney delivers the speech that everyone is talking about today. really, almost unprecedented in american political history. he will call who could be the republican nominee a fraud, a phony. talking about donald trump, and mitt romney will beg voters to rethink their support. >> plus we'll talk with a trump supporter. what he thinks the impact of mitt romney's direct attack will have, and is donald trump flirting with an independent run? this is cnn's special live coverage. they think that it's sad. i think it's important for everyone to know that there is so much more to memory support than the stigmas you hearabout. that these residents still have lives and their lives still matter and that they are still living their lives.
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just minutes from now, it will hit the fan. mitt, that is. mitt romney, the new front man in the mission to take down donald trump. >> that's one way to put it, my friend. the republican party's most recent nominee set to deliver a speech calling out donald trump as a phony. as a fraud, saying the american people are being played for suckers. donald trump wanted to get ahead of that message already this morning. listen. >> mitt romney is a stiff. mitt romney will not get elected. mitt romney failed twice and really failed last time. he was going against the president that should have been beaten, the president was not doing well. and he should have been beaten. that should have been an easy election. the problem is nobody came out to vote for mitt romney, and i'm talking about republicans. >> i'm talking about republicans. joining us right now to continue
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the discussion, mary katherine hamm, matt slap, bill press, and barry bennett. great to see you all. no so, barry, first to you. this is pretty extraordinary. the counterpunch seems pretty easy. just roll the 2012 video of trump endorsing romney. but is it that easy? >> it is. the last poll had 72% of republicans wanting an outsider. the establishment is rolling out romney to attack donald trump. it's ridiculous. they're probably helping donald trump. i don't know why they're doing this. this is completely absurd. >> why is it absurd? >> well, i mean, there's no way that mitt romney could ever be viewed as a conservative.
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he was pro-choice. he was probailout. he's proamnesty. he's proglobal warming. it's ridiculous. we all worked for him and swallowed it, and he came up 5 million votes short. he lost virginia, florida, iowa, wisconsin, nevada. it goes on and on and on. and now he's going to be the great savior of our party? i don't think so. >> so, mary katherine, i know you've made the point that the opposition to donald trump isn't just establishment. it's movement conservatism right now. a lot of them standing up and saying not donald trump, not ever. but, mary katherine, but having mitt romney now go out and give this speech and be the most high profile opponent to donald trump, the most high profile never trump guy, doesn't this make it an establishment movement? >> that is what it feels like. and though i hate to agree with barry, i do think that this is problematic to have him
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delivering this message. on the scale of political speeches if you have at one end, the mitt romney light punch to the donald trump jab, this is certainly more toward donald trump for mitt romney's style. he'll say a lot of things that are true, and he'll make criticisms, but they won't matter because of the messenger and the time. and by the way, this attack on donald trump much like many of the others seems oddly timed when he could have made a bigger difference, he could have endorsed in nevada, precaucus. that might have made a difference, but this is a little bit past that point, and although the points he'll make are true, the messenger is going to be an issue. >> but, matt, is there an argument to make that it's easy to poo poo it because it hasn't worked yet, but who knows? if mitt romney can't speak out on it, who's the alternative? >> i don't fault him for coming out and saying something. i just think the timing is odd. >> go ahead, matt.
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>> look, i somewhat agree with mary katherine. i'm of two mienlnds. i think everybody ought to leave it in the field. we have days, weeks and months left, and we have sharp differences. they will be on the stage here at cpac, and everybody ought to go for it as strong as they can. that's what romney is trying to do. it is late. why didn't he do this before nevada? why do some of the billionaire financers think they can plop in at the end? they should have started this a year ago if they had these alarms. some of the attacks on donald trump, they ring hallow. i think mitt romney has every right to do this, but i don't think it's going to be that effective, and i think what he's saying to the 40% or so of republican primary voters out there casting these votes for donald trump, is they're trying to say their voice doesn't matter. that's a huge mistake. >> you know, bill, i'm going to ask you to disagree to make it
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interesting since everyone is being agreeable here, but is this now the establishment, essentially, biting the hand that feeds it? the establishment for a long time of the republican party has courted donald trump and the folks that are now supporting donald trump. it was the basis to an extent, part of the tea party movement. the establishment benefitted from that. paul ryan wrote it to the spokership. the republicans road it to a majority. for them to come out now and say, oh, no thanks, it's getting too real now. does that seem disingenuous. >> the saddest words i heard are elder statesman. they're rolling out the elder statesman. really? they think he'll bring down donald trump? i don't get it. you're right. i think the republican party has created at least the field for a donald trump to emerge. he has brilliantly taken advantage of the to kags, and i think it's too late to stop him.
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a couple of months ago i wrote a column saying if the republican party wanted to stop donald trump, they had to unite between one other challenger, and others had to come out and say no way will we vote for donald trump as our nominee or accept him. even today from what we hear, mitt romney is not willing to say that. why not? i think the hidden agenda here is mitt romney is saying if you really get stuck, me, me, me, me. >> oh, boy. >> barry, let me ask you something. donald trump did today what donald trump does. he got out. he wanted to get in front of it. he basically presented his prebuttl on the morning shows. one of the things he said on morning joe he said if i leave everybody is going to leave with me. and they asked, are you toying once again with the idea of running as an independent, and his response was, i signed a letter with the rnc saying i
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would run as a republican. that pledge as they call it, but i'm not being treated the right way. i'm not being treated properly. thoughts on that? >> i don't know. i think that's a donald trump bluff. i don't think he'll do that. i don't think mike bloomberg will do it either. his other point is he's excited people and gotten new people out to vote in the republican primaries. i think that's important. mitt romney did not and cannot. donald trump has that going for him. i think the party has to recognize that as a real reenergizing of the base they need. >> barry, weigh in on the idea of donald trump toying again with the concept of an independent run. >> i don't think there's any chance of an independent run. i mean, the only way the establishment wins this is to subvert the will to the republican primary goers. w when we get to the convention,
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donald trump will be the majority of the delegates. >> mary katherine -- sorry, go ahead barry. >> if they want to wear a bomb vest into the republican party and blow it up for the sake of their own power, no one can stop them, but it's really stupid. >> mary katherine, you wanted a piece of this? >> here's what romney can do today. he can put something into the media bloodstream. if everyone listens to him, he has 100% name i.d. he'll get up and say maybe the guy should release the taxes. he can, and maybe that's an issue. that's an issue that affects traditional candidates, and donald trump isn't a traditional candidate. and back in 2012 on the endorsement, donald trump's rationale has always been i'll pick the right leaders for everything when they get into the white house. i don't need to know about it
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right now. i'll pick the right leaders. he spoke romney, and now he says he's a loser. that's a problem if that's his line. >> we're watching the lectern. there's movement. we may need to cut you off. but i want to ask you about the veemt part of the anti-trump movement. there are a lot of people upset that cpac is having trump talk. a lot of people going after you hard for that. what do you make of that? >> yes. i'm a big boy, john. i can handle it. let me just say we're very proud that all five presidential candidates, including dr. carson will be at c pack. when they come to cpac, we're so happy they're on our stage, but they're also going to have to answer questions. they're going to have to answer the questions of conservatives. people will have the chance to
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ask questions of trump and other candidates. with this big family food fight on display in front of the television camera isn't one many of us wanted, but we have to take our country back by deciding who the nominee is and get behind him. >> i think what we're looking at right now at the university of utah is jason perry, the director who could be introducing mitt romney. >> alliance with the 50 th anniversary. over the last five decades we've held free public forums on critical issues facing our country. the founder championed the pressing need for our students to become and stay politically engaged. since that time we have provided a wide range of civic opportunities for students, teachers, and for the public.
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today's address will mark the 66th public forum just in this school year. before we continue, will you please take a moment to silence all of your mobile devices? thank you. we are now most fortunate to be able to hear a key perspective on the state of the 2016 presidential election. will you please join me in welcoming governor mitt romney. [ applause ] >> thank you. thank you. thank you, jasen it's good to be with you today. thank you. [ applause ]
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>> now, i'm not here to announce my candidacy for office. and i'm not going to endorse a candidate today. instead, i'd like to offer my perspective on the nominating process of my party. back in 1964 just days before the presidential election which incidentally we lost, ronald reagan went on national television and challenged america says it was a time for choosing. he saw two paths for america, one that embraced conservative principles dead dated to lifting people out of poverty and helping create opportunity for all, and the other, an oppressive government that would lead america down a darker, less free path. i'm no ronald reagan. and this is a different moment in time. but i believe with all my heart and soul that we face another time for choosing. one that will have profound consequences for the republican party and more importantly, for
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our country. i say this in part because of my conviction that america is poised to lead the world for another century. our technology engines, our innovation dynamic, the ambition and skill of our people, are going to propel our economy and raise the standard of living of americans. america will remain as it is today, the envy of the world. you may have seen warren buffet. he said, and i think he's 100% right, that the babies being born in america today are the luckiest crop can in history. that doesn't mean we don't have real problems and serious challenges. we do. at home poverty persists and wages are stagnant. the horrific massacres of paris and san bernardino, the nuclear ambitions of the iranian mulah's, the aggressions of putin, the growing assertiveness
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of china and the nuclear tests mean we live in troubled times. but if we make the right choices america's future will be better than the past and present. on the other hand, it might not materialize. if we republicans choose donald trump as our nominee, the prospects for a safe and prosperous future are greatly diminished. let me explain why i say that. first on the economy. if donald trump's plans were ever implemented, the country would sink into prolonged recession. a few examples. his proposed 35 % after the rick penalties would institute a trade war that would raise prices for consumers, kill our export jobs and lead entrepreneurs and businesses of
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all stripes to flee america. his tax plan in combination with his refusal to enform entitlements and to honestly address spending would balloon the deficit and the national debt. so even though donald trump is offered very few specific economic plans, what little he has said is enough to know that he would be bad for american workers and for american families. but you say wait, wait, wait. isn't he a huge business success? doesn't he know what he's talking about? no, he isn't. and no, he doesn't. [ applause ] look, his bankruptcies have crushed small businesses. and the men and women who worked for them. he inherited his business. he didn't create it. and what ever happened to trump airlines? how about trump university? and then there's trump magazine.
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and trump vodka, and trump steaks, and trump mortgage. a business genius, he is not. now, not every policy that trump has floated is bad. he wants to repeal and replace obama care and bring jobs home from china and japan, but his prescriptions to do those things are flimsy at best. at the last debate, all he could remember about his health care plan was to remove insurance boundaries between states. successfully brichking jobs home requires serious policy and reforms that make america the place businesses want to come, want to plant, and want to grow. you can't punish business into doing what you want. frankly, the only serious policy proposals that deal with a broad range of national challenges we confront today come from ted cruz, marco rubio, and john kasich. one of these men should be our nominee. [ applause ]
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>> now, i know that some people want this race to be over. they look at history, and say a trend like mr. trump's isn't going to be stopped. perhaps. but the rules of political history have pretty much all been shredded during this campaign. if the other candidates can find some common ground, i believe we can nominate a person who can win the general election and who will represent the values and policies of conservatism. given the current delegate selection process, that means that i'd vote for marco rubio in florida and for john kasich in ohio, and for ted cruz or whoever has the best chance to beating mr. trump in a given state. let me turn to national security and the safety of our loved ones. mr. trump is fueling the em anity of our enemies. insulting all muslims will keep many of them from fully engaging
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with us in their urgent fight against isis, and for what purpose? muslim terrorists would only have to lie about their religion to enter the country. and then what he said about -- on 60 minutes. it was about syria and isis. it has to go down as the most ridiculous and dangerous idea of the entire campaign season. let isis take out asaad, he said. and then we can pick up the remnants. now, think about that. let the most dangerous terror organization the world has ever known take over an entire country? this recklessness is recklessness in the extreme. now, donald trump tells us that he is very, very smart. [ laughter ] >> i'm afraid that when it comes to foreign policy, he is very, very not smart. [ applause ]
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>> now, i'm far from the first to conclude that donald trump lacks the temperament to be president. after all, this is an individual who mocked a disabled reporter, who attributed a reporter's questions who her men straul cycle, who mocked a brilliant rival who happened to be a woman due to her appearance. who bragged about his marital affairs and laces his speeches with vulgarity. he says he admires putin and calls george w. push a liar. that's a twisted example of evil trumping good. [ applause ] >> there's a dark irony in his boasts of his sexual exploits during the vietnam war. at the same time john mccain,
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when he has mocked was imprisoned and tortured. dishonesty is donald trump's hallmark. he claimed that he had spoken clearly and boldly against going into iraq. wrong. he spoke in favor of invading iraq. he said he saw thousands of muslims in new jersey celebrating 9/11. wrong. he saw no such thing. he imagined it. he's not of the temperament of the kind of stable, thoughtful person we need as leader. his imagination must not be married to real power. the president of the united states has long been the leader of the free world. the president, and, yes, even the nominees of the country's great parties helped define america to billions of people around the world. all of them bear the responsibility of being an example for our children and our grandchildren. think of donald trump's personal
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qualities. the bullying, the greed, the showing off, the me saujny, the third grade theatrics. we've long referred to him as the donald. he's the only person in the entire country who whom we have added an article before his name, and it wasn't because he had attributes we admired. now, imagine your children and your grandchildren acting the way he does. would you welcome that? haven't we seen before what happens when people in prominent positions fail the basic responsibility of honorable conduct? we have. and it always injures our families and our country. watch, by the way, how he responds to my speech today. [ applause ]
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>> will he talk about our policy differences? or will he talk me with every imaginable low road insult? this may tell you what you need to know about his temperament, his stability, and his suitability to be president. now mr. trump relishes any poll that reflects what he thinks of himself. but polls are also saying that he will lose to hillary clinton. think about that. on hillary clinton's watch, the state department, when he was guiding it and part of the obama administration, that state department watched as america's interests were diminished at every corner of the world. she compromised our national secrets. she dissembled to the families of the slain, and she jet sonned her most profound believes to gain power. for the last three decades the clintons have lived at the
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intersection of money and politics trading their political influence to enrich their personal finances. they embody the term crony capitalism. it disgusts the american people, and causes them to lose faith in our political process. a person who untrustworthy and dishonest as hillary clinton must not become president. [ applause ] >> of course, a trump nomination enables her victory. and the audio and video of the infamous tapper/trump exchange on the ku klux klan will play 100,000 times on cable and how
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many million times on social media. there are a number of people who claim that mr. trump is a con man, a fake, [ chanting we love mitt ] >> thank you . [ applause ] >> let me say that again. there's plenty of evidence that mr. trump is a con man, a fake. mr. trump has changed his positions, not just over the years, but over the course of the campaign. and on the klu klux klan, daily for three days in a row. we will only know if he's the real deal or a phony if he releases his tax returns and his tape of the interview with the new york times. i predict there are more bomb shells in his tax returns and he doesn't give much if anything to our veterans or disabled. i predict he told "the new york times" that his immigration talk is just that, talk.
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and i predict that despite his promise to do so, first made over a year ago, that he will never, ever release his tax returns. never. not the returns under audit, not even the returns that are no longer being audited. he has too much to hide. for will he authorize the release of the tapes that he made with the new york times. if i'm right, you'll have all the proof you need to know that donald trump is, indeed, a phony. attacking me as he surely will won't prove him any less of a phony. it's in his hands to prove me wrong. all he has to do is release his back taxes like he promised and let us hear what he said behind closed doors to the new york times. ronald reagan used to quote a scottish philosopher who predicted that democracies and civilizations wouldn't last much longer than a couple hundred years, and john adams who this.
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remember, democracy never lasts long. it soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. there never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. that's john adams. i believe that america has proven those dire predictions wrong for two reasons. first, we've been blessed with great presidents with giants among us. men of character, integrity, and selflessness have led our nation from the beginning. none were perfect. each surely made mistakes, but in every case, they acted out of the desire to do what was right for america. and for the cause of freedom. the second reason is because we're blessed with a great people. people who at every critical moment of choosing have put the
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interests of the country above their own. these two things are related. our presidents time and again have called on us to rise to the occasion. john f kennedy asked us to consider what we could do for our country. lincoln drew upon the better angles of our nature to save the union. i understand the anger americans feel today. in the past, our presidents have channelled that anger and forged it into resolve. in the will to defeat the enemies of freedom. our anger was transformed into energy directed for good. mr. trump is directing our anger for less than noble purposes. he uses scapegoats an calls for the use of torture and calls for
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killing the innocent children and family members of terrorists. this is the very brand of anger that has led other nations into the abyss. here's what i know. donald trump is a phony. a fraud. his promises are as worthless as a degree from trump university. [ applause ] >> he's playing the american public for suckers. he gets a free ride to the white house, and all we get is recess. his foreign policies would make america and the world less safe. he has neither the temperament nor the judgment to be
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president. and his personal qualities would mean that america would cease to be a shining city on a hill. i'm convinced america has greatness ahead. and this is a time for choosing. god bless us to choose a nominee who will make that vision a reality. thank you and god bless you all. thank you. a truly extraordinary moment. mitt romney, the last republican nominee to be president of the united states, just going after the man right now, the leading candidate to be the next republican nominee. he called donald trump a phony, a fraud. he said america would be less safe under donald trump, less -- >> would lead to a recession. >> and stunningly, seemed to endorse the idea of a brokered convention. >> without saying it, it sure seemed that's exactly what he was describing. basically saying, do anything you can to stop donald trump from getting the -- the 1,237
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delegates needed to lock in the nomination. let's bring in our political panel, gloria borger is here with us. david chalian, dana bash, gary bennett, sellers and ryan williams, a former spokesman for mitt romney's presidential campaign. gloria, a point by point indictment of donald trump. >> remarkable. >> taking him on his tax returns, muslim ban, trump university, the kkk exchange with jake tapper, talked about that specifically. his bankruptcies, his vague prescriptions for how to replace obamacare. that's not even all of it. >> right. on everything from his temperament and personal qualities to the notion that he's a phony and he ticked off, okay, you've got to release the transcript of that tape interview with the "new york times," and also romney went further. he said, i know what you're going to find. you're going to find a bombshell, he hasn't given money to charity. you're going to find he's not as rich as he says he is, et
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cetera, et cetera. i think that romney, who is smart, understands the people who love donald trump may not listen to him. why would they, okay? he ran for the presidency, and he lost. i think this was sort of a personal cree de core about mitt romney. he started the speech by saying i'm not running for anything. so he sort of took himself aside and said, i'm not running for anything. let me then tell you exactly what i really think about this candidate. he did not address the fact that last time he accorded donald trump to endorse him. >> that wasn't mentioned at all. >> but, you know, to john's point, he also said, vote for marco rubio in florida. you know, vote for john kasich in ohio. and what that means is, make it hard for this guy to get to the magic number of 1,237, and perhaps lead to a contested -- >> barry bennett, we are
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watching twitter, we are awaiting a response from donald trump. while we wait for that, you are supportive of donald trump. i want to give you a chance to respond to what mitt romney just said. >> i thought it was a pretty sad and very outrageous. what it was was a call to arms to the establishment that we need to do everything we can to subvert the will of the voters and steal the nomination at the convention. plain and is simple. >> steal the nomination. >> absolutely. that's exactly what they're trying to do. they will not be successful at it. it's a pathetic attempt. but it's disgusting. >> is it stealing the nomination if marco rubio would win in florida? if john kasich would win in ohio? and they would -- they would effectively play the field, no one drop out. it would head to a contested convention. is that stealing? >> well, i mean, you know, ifs and buts were candy and nuts, every day would be like christmas. he's not going to win florida. john kasich is not going to win
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ohio. he's going to have the majority of delegates at the convention. that still isn't going to stop them from trying to steal it. mark my words. >> ryan williams, you used to work for mitt romney. the first words out of his mouth were "i'm not a candidate." do you believe him? >> yes, he's made clear for the last two years, he's not running for president again. he laid out the case very eloquently against donald trump. it was very refreshing to hear a well-thought-out and spoken speech from a republican candidate. we haven't seen that in a while, certainly with trump dominating the headlines in recent weeks. it was a good speech. he laid out the case as to why donald trump is dishonest, a con man, the wrong person to lead the party and also lacks morals. he gave a good comparison about trump bragging about his sexual exploits in the '70s while john mccain was in a vietnam prison. that was, i think, a powerful line. and he also made clear that he is supportive of the other three candidates. there have been some mainstream candidates in recent weeks that
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said, look, i might take trump over cruz. governor romney made clear he thinks ted cruz, as well as marco rubio and john kasich would all make good nominees. he laid a lot out in the speech, put it out there and we'll see how donald trump responds in the coming hours. >> dana, i want to get your take on that one section of where he said, you know, this is basically how it should play out, guys. here's the strategy. search for common ground. this means i would vote for marco rubio in florida. i would vote for john kasich in ohio and for ted cruz, or whichever one of the other two contenders has the best chance of beating mr. trump in any given state. >> that's right. just as gloria said. he is calling for effectively a contested -- convention, because that's what the result would be of what he said should happen. that everybody needs to vote in a way that donald trump will lose. you know, i think maybe a more bold way to approach it would have been just to pick a
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candidate. but i also think that that would probably be even less effective, because of what we were talking about beforehand. you know, mitt romney does embody the establishment, and not sure if that would really be very helpful at this point in time, to endorse any of those candidates. what i also thought was an interesting tactic in this extraordinary speech -- i mean, this was a wow speech. was the way he tried to preempt the trump reaction. i thought that was very, very interesting, and clever. because, you know, anybody who has watched donald trump for five minutes knows that he is a counter puncher, and he's been doing it all morning since it was reported that mitt romney is going to give this kind of a speech. i also thought that was, you know, unclear how effective it will be. but the fact that he tried to call donald trump out on everything, including how he reacts to criticism, was fascinating. >> it's coming. i mean, you know, it's coming. and soon.
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>> of course. >> david chalian, i kept wondering if we would hear mitt romney say, "i'm sorry, i was wrong. i shouldn't have sought his endorsement four years ago. i regret campaigning with him four years ago." do you think it might have been more effective had he done something like that today? >> i think he'll clearly be pressed on that in the days ahead, john. i don't know for purposes of his speech if it would have been any more effective. i do think, specifically in the one part where he was talking about how donald trump would be terrible for the economy, and that he doesn't know anything about business at all, i mean, you could literally play that sound bite against mitt romney praising donald trump's business acumen four years ago and his ability and knowledge about how to create jobs, and how to deal with china. i mean, you could just put those two things back-to-back from each other and it would be two different mitt romneys. there is no doubt that he will have to deal with that at some point if he wants to move forward and be a credible voice going forward.
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i agree with dana, also, just -- let's just step back for a moment about what an astonishing moment this is. >> yeah. >> you just have -- i cannot think of an example where i have seen the most recent standard bear of the party just take down, line by line, the current front runner for the party's nomination. is really is an astonishing thing. i think what mitt romney didn't do here, is sort of speak to those great majorities that we're seeing in exit poll after exit poll, state after state, who feel betrayed by their own republican party leadership. these are republican primary voters who feel betrayed by the mitt romneys of the world. or the mitch mcconnells of the world. and i don't think he spoke to those folks at all. i think he was speaking to the donor class. i think he was speaking to folks that are launching these efforts to try to in some last gasp of breath kind of ability to stop trump, and trying to give life
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to that movement, more than he was actually trying to persuade voters who have been with trump or who are feeling that frustration to move away from him. >> and we were wondering going in who would the audience be. gloria, we did just get a statement from the 2008 republican nominee, john mccain, issuing a statement that says i endorse what mitt romney said. he goes into, especially focusing on national security, foreign policy. but he says, i share the concerns about donald trump that my friend and former republican nominee, mitt romney in his speech today, echoing the concerns about mr. trump's uninformed and indeed dangerous statements on national security issues. >> if the floodgates hadn't already opened. >> there we go. >> here we are, and they will continue to open the statement from john mccain, is not a surprise. he did -- i think a little bit. romney did a little bit in what is truly a stunning speech, laying out an indictment against
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donald trump. he did say, "i understand the anger americans feel today." lots of americans may feel mitt romney doesn't and can't possibly understand their anger. but he said, you know, in the past, presidents learn how to channel that anger and turn it into something positive, useful, productive. and he said trump is directing our anger for, quote, less than noble purposes, and talks about creating scapegoats, and talks about muslims and the rest. and so i think he addressed it in the way that he could without getting into a longer speech about it. of but i think he did at least acknowledge what is going on out there, and making it very clear that you have plenty of other candidates out there. if you're angry, who you can vote for. >> bakari sellers, it was pros cue to recall, he was unprecedented, something we have not seen in this way, in this campaign today. there were no jokes about small hands here. this was deadly

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