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tv   At This Hour With Berman and Bolduan  CNN  May 23, 2016 8:00am-9:01am PDT

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. hello, everyone. i'm kate bolduan. >> and i'm john berman. it's neck and neck. it's a tie, it's a dead heat, it's may. all of the above are true, but which is the most important? two national polls, new national polls, show donald trump closing a double digit gap with hillary clinton, and one poll he's even leading her right now. "washington post"/abc news poll has trump leading clinton 46 to 44%. that's an 11-point shift for donald trump since march. "the wall street journal"/nbc news poll has trump at 43%, clinton a little ahead at 46%.
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both of those polls well within the margin of error. >> and both candidates are already making history. though this is not the kind of history you want to be making if you're a candidate for the president. both staring down 50-plus percent unfavorable ratings right now making them the most unpopular likely nominees in modern presidential history. here to break zoun tdown the nu is cnn political director david chalian. >> i think it's important to take a moment and say, wow, this is where we are at this moment. >> the horse race numbers you did right there, guys, i mean, let's just start out by saying both establishment republicans who have been reluctant to donald trump and left-wing liberals who probably thought if he was the nominee it was like a glorious day for them, the headline there is he could win, and that i think has both -- real impact on both the left and the right as they coalesce around their nominees for the fall election, about you let's take a look at those unfavorable numbers that you just cited,
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kate. it is historic. majorities in both of these polls. look at this. unfavorable for clinton, 57%. unfavorable for trump, 57%. very similar there in "the washington post"/abc news poll. look at the "wall street journal"/nbc numbers on this score. here you see trump is even more unfavorable than clinton, but, again, majorities, 54% for clinton, 58% for trump unfavorable, and this is why it's so important. yes, it's historic, but it means we are probably girding for a really uninspiring election season for the next six months because these folks are not liked, and it's giving some credence to the notion of this hunger that we see in american poll licks toditics today for s option. >> it's a glass half empty challenge. it's a victory for the unloved and unlikable. >> but david chalian will not. >> it's interesting. the trump coalition and the clinton coalition that are being
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built right now, who is lining up behind each candidate, very, very telling. >> let's start with hillary clinton's coalition and what the makeup of strong support among her supporters are. take a look here, if you look amon african-american voters, if you look among latinos, women, young voters, you see those are all hugely important categories for secretary clinton. big margins there, guys. really big margins of victory. take a look at the trump coalition from the nbc news/"wall street journal" poll there. white voters, senior citizens, men, and even edging out among independents. these are not surprising numbers as much as they are reinforcing of where we are in our politics today, guys, and what is going to be so important to each side. these look similar to the obama versus romney 2012 coalitions which if you're donald trump is not the most welcome news because romney lost that race, but you do see how important for secretary clinton that she is
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going to need that obama coalition to come out again in strong numbers if she's going to override his advantage with independents and men and whites. >> absolutely. >> david chalian for us in washington. thanks so much. we have breaking news right now out of baltimore right now. the first verdict in a trial dealing with the death of freddie gray while he was in police custody now more than one year ago. this concerns the case of officer edward nero. miguel, what can you tell us? >> reporter: edward nero found not guilty on all charges. the judge saying that on the charge of assault, that he wasn't even there for the arrest. he did not put the cuffs on mr. gray. he did not arrest mr. gray. therefore, there is no assault. in the misconduct charge in office that he was charged with in connection with that arrest, he said if he didn't arrest him, then there's no misconduct in office. that also not guilty. on the reckless endangerment, mr. nero was one of the individuals that the prosecution
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said failed to put a seat belt on mr. gray or raise the fact that mr. gray had not been seat belted. he said that the state just did not prove its case, that a reasonable officer would have done just what mr. nero had done in that situation. so there was no reckless endangerment on the second count of misconduct in office related to that seat belt charge, he said if he acted reasonably in not doing that, there is no misconduct here. edward nero in court, this has been a year that he has been dealing with this, hung his head down low. you could see the relief sort of falling away from him as the judge said very simply, not guilty on all counts. a full acquittal for him. this will have huge implications for the other officers, the other five officers, as they go to court, and this is a verdict that this city has been waiting for. certainly people here already gathering to see if there will be any reaction to this verdict. john? >> miguel, important context in
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all of this is this was a bench trial, this was no jury involved in this, and as this was all playing out, the judge did seem to challenge the prosecution on their claim that officer nero's kind of activity, the takedown, the arrest, that it meant criminal assault. take us inside there on those conversations and what -- how that judge's challenge seemed to foreshadow where we ended up today. >> two sides here. nero's lawyers discussed this at length about whether they should do a bench trial, that is judge barry williams only heard the evidence, and they felt because of the legal theories the prosecution was going to get into, that it would serve them better to do the bench trial. remember, the last trial ended in a hung jury. the jury not being able to get through all the legalese. in this case the judge again and again basically told the prosecutors, i don't understand, how is it you are saying mr. gray was detained and that was
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legal, a terry stop as they call it, and that was legal, but at some point it becomes illegal when he was arrested, the cuffs put on him, and him charged? where is that point? where would a reasonable officer acting -- maybe he made a mistake, but where would a reasonable officer even if he made a mistake fall into a criminal liability. the judge just never saw it. it is something that happens on the streets here and across this country every day. people upset that police not only detain them but arrest them, put them in prison. they become a number, they become part of the system, and they really despise that about the police. that charge, those charges are what the prosecution seemed to be charging was trying to get at that, and the judge said you just didn't make a case. >> this is the first verdict, miguel, we've been saying, although it's the second trial involving the death of freddie gray. the trial of william porter ended with a hung jury so declared a mistrial. he will be retried in the coming months. put officer nero into context
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for us. he's one of six officers charged. what did he do that day? >> reporter: this was about 8:40 in the morning or 8:00 in the morning. mr. gray sees officers, goes running. edward nero was one of the officers on a bike patrol along with officer miller. both of them chased mr. gray. miller jumped off his bike, ran after mr. gray, grabbed him at a gate or a fence near the area he was trying to run into. mr. nero then went back to get mr. miller's bicycle which he had left and brought that back. the judge noted that because he said, look, nero wasn't there for the actual arrest, and that was a huge piece of information for the judge in making his decision. so nero shows up a few seconds later, after miller already has him down in cuffs, arrested. then he is put into the van, that famous video of mr. gray being put into the van. they say that mr. nero did have
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contact with gray later on when he was moved to the area where we see him in that famous video of mr. gray screaming and being put into the van. at the second stop about 20 seconds later, maybe a minute later, right around the corner on mount street, they said that mr. nero helped put mr. gray in leg irons or in cuffs on his ankles. they put him in the van, and the prosecution saying that's when he should have said, when you slid him out of the van, you should have put a seat belt on him or told somebody you should have. the defense arguing, well, any reasonable officer not knowing how these seat belts work, this is a bike officer, he was never trained on it, didn't really know. the van driver himself is the one responsible for that person in the van. so it wasn't his fault. the judge agreed with him saying that nero was not responsible for putting him in a seat belt. >> miguel marquez is outside the white house. miguel, stick with us. we're going to be right back after a break. we are covering breaking news here in the cases against the
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officers involved in the arrest and death of freddie gray. this happened back in april 2015. this is the first verdict of the six officers charged in his arrest and subsequent death. breaking news coverage, what this means for the cases going forward and for that city coming up right after the break. hmmmmmm..... [ "dreams" by beck ] hmmmmm... hmmmmm... the turbocharged dream machine. the volkswagen golf gti. part of the award-winning golf family.
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ultimate flora probiotics. all right. our breaking news just moments ago, officer ed woor neard nero acquitted of all charges related to the death of freddie gray. this happened more than a year ago in baltimore, maryland. he's one of six officers charged separately in this case. there was one trial already for william porter. that ended in a hung jury, a mistrial. so this is the first verdict, acquitted of all charges. we have our eye on baltimore right now. we are waiting for reaction from the attorney and the family of freddie gray. we will bring that to you the minute it happens. in the meantime, let's bring in danny cevallos, cnn legal analyst on this. danny, you have been following this trial so closely. your initial reaction to the verdict? >> i think this is a gambit by the defense that worked out just perfectly because the general sort of consensus is that judge-only trials are risky for
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defendants. the idea is math. it's sort of a game theory, that with 12 jurors you only need to convince one of them that that person is not guilty, but with one judge you get one flip of the coin but that math is a little flawed because a judge is a little better suited to understand legal issues like self-defense, probable cause to make a stop, and that was an issue here. you saw that this judge questioned witnesses and questioned the prosecutor about whether or not an arrest without probable cause always constitutes a crime. that was very, very important. this judge appeared to hone in on some important legal issues. this may have been a gamble that worked well for the defense. >> it was a bench trial, as danny was saying, no jury in this case. danny, one of six trials here. does this give any sense of what might happen in the five trials to follow? >> it definitely does. if nothing else, this news is going to get to any potential jury pool, but ultimately what -- if these officers are acquitted, it may be because
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they were tried separately and not together. look, i am a biased defense attorney, but it's always been my view, and i think defense attorneys would agree, that prosecutions benefit by grouping defendants together, putting a bunch of guys at a table and pointing the finger at the whole of them. when you try them each separately, now each of their conduct is only seen as a little part of a broader crime or a broader problem, and so ultimately if there are nothing but acquittals in this case, that might be a significant factor. the trial of defendants in individual cases. >> danny, stick with us for one second. let's get back over to baltimore. miguel marquez is on the ground and he has freddie gray's family attorney with him. miguel? >> reporter: this is billy murphy, the freddie gray family attorney. you were in the room for that verdict. what did you make of the judge's reasoning? >> i found no problem with the judge's reasoning, and, of course, the outcome about how he weighs the evidence is strictly up to him and not to us. i commend judge williams because
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he's one of those rare judges that disregarded public opinion. there was enormous pressure from the african-american community to get a conviction -- >> reporter: an african-american judge we should say. >> yes. and he did not bend to that pressure. >> reporter: but mr. gray's family cannot be happy with this result. they say that the damage to mr. gray's spine occurred at the point of arrest and subsequently. >> on the other hand, they also respect the process, and you couldn't have asked for a more fair-minded judge than barry williams. you could not ask for a judge with a background that was absolutely suited to handle this kind of case. you can't argue that he left out any of the relevant evidence, and you can't argue that he did not cover every aspect of the law that applies to this case, and so i think that the family is going to respect that opinion and await the outcome of the rest of the cases. >> reporter: prosecutors charging officer nero with a
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transaction that happens almost every day on the streets of baltimore, that people that i covered during this process were very upset about, that is being detained, being arrested, being put into the system by the police here. it is an us-against-them sort of sensibility. these charges seem to try to get at that, that you just can't make arrests willy-nilly. the judge didn't agree, saying this arrest was legal. >> well, he found out from the evidence that officer nero was not involved in the arrests, and so that can't be pinned on officer nero. and i respect that finding. he was in the best position to make a finding one way or the other. that's what we pay judges to do, and he did it. who am i to say that he should have been found guilty or not guilty? and unless you hear all of the evidence and you understand the legal principles involved, your opinion is essentially irrelevant, and i caution the public not to have an opinion
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about a case that was tried in such detail that they didn't see. >> reporter: that's the other question. certainly the city will be watching. they will hear acquittal on all charges of the first white police officer tried in this situation. how is that going to be received here? >> well, i hope it's going to be received with he cequanimity bee we learn from this process. you can't convict people unless you know the evidence. you can't convict people unless you know the law, and that's why we have judges, and judge williams is an outstanding example of the kind of judge that rejected public opinion and based his opinion only on the law and the evidence as he saw it. now, the defense chose a bench trial, and it worked out well for them. that says nothing about whether it's going to work out well for any of the other officers involved in this case. >> reporter: have you spoken directly to the gray family and got their reaction? >> not yet, but i intend to do
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so. >> reporter: i understand his mother was meant to be in court today but didn't make it i don't think. >> i didn't see her in the courtroom but i have heard conflicting reports about whether she ultimately made it, but i'll be talking to the family shortly. >> reporter: all right. mr. murphy, thank you very much. certainly a huge case that will be watched, this particular verdict, and now going forward june 6th is the next trilg slal slated of officer caesar goodson, the van driver up on the most serious of charges. >> miguel marquez for us in baltimore. we have been looking at aerial photos of what's going on in the ground in baltimore. you can see there's demonstrations outside the courthouse. also a lot of cameras. i think a lot of it was photographers running around. >> not exactly -- >> not sure exactly what's going on, but you can see there is some reaction on the ground right now. >> we are getting reaction, a statement just came in from stephanie rawlings-blake, the mayor of baltimore, in the
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middle of all of these simmering tensions that ignited over the arrest and death of freddie gray. in part the statement says we once again to ask the citizens to be patient and allow the process to come to a conclusion. in the case of any disturbance, we are prepared to respond. we will protect our neighborhoods, our businesses, and the people of our city. you can see the concern that this could boil over in the reaction. >> danny cevallos is still with us. we heard from billy murphy, the attorney for freddie gray's family right now representing the interests of the deceased in this case, but very complimentary of the judge, barry williams, who made the decision from the bench. he found no fault at all with the decision made from the bench there. is that a usual thing? >> attorney murphy is an excellent strategist. i can only speculate why he would take that opinion. you can be inclined to think he would not be a big fan of the judge's decision in this case but he made some very important observations.
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again, this is a judge-only trial, and while 12 jurors or a jury may have the pressures, the social pressures, they're different for a judge. in a way they're more intense because he or she is the sole arbiter of this case, but on the other hand he is sort of empowered by his or her knowledge of the law around knowing he has to make a decision one way or the other. this is ultimately an issue of law, and like attorney murphy said, this is a gamble that worked out well for the defense. it will be interesting to see what the ripple effects of this decision will be as to the other defendants. >> do we know yet, and i'm sorry if i don't know, do we know if all the other defendants have already opted for a bench trial or way too early to get into that? >> i actually don't know, but i will tell you this, there's an interesting part of american law. each of us has a constitutional right to a jury trial, but what i found out to myself much to my disappointment is defendants do not have an absolute right to a bench trial, to a judge trial. in many situations the
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prosecution can stop that request for a judge-only trial. so it raises the question, if the prosecution could have stopped a bench trial, why didn't they? >> just one of the questions we're going to be asking. our live coverage from baltimore will continue in a moment. again, the breaking news is this, officer edward nero, one of the six officers charged in the death -- >> this is him walking maybe out of the courthouse it looks like. that's what we're looking at right now, john. juke see the footage there of him moving there and a lot of people following him. he has been declared not guilty on all charges. more from the ground and reaction from the streets coming up.
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all right. the breaking news out of baltimore, maryland. judge barry williams has declared officer edward nero not guilty on all charges connected to the death of freddie gray more than one year ago in baltimore. freddie gray you'll remember died while in police custody sparking all kinds of proat tte on the streets of that baltimore. live pictures from the streets of baltimore. moments ago we received a statement from the fraternal order of police. we will read it to you in toto. officer edward nero is relieved that for him this night mire is nearing an end being falsely charged with a crime and prosecuted for reasons that have nothing to do with justice is a horror that no person should ever have to undour. unfortunately, his relief is tempered by the fact that five other police officers, outstanding men and women and good friends, must continue to fight these baseless prosecutions. none of these officers did anything wrong. the state attorneys responded to the riots and violence in baltimore by rushing to charge these officers rashly and
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without any meaningful investigation. they seized a political opportunity and in the process destroyed six lives and dell mo demolished the relationship. >> they were speaking on behalf of officer nero and the statement goes on to say officer nero prays that justice will serve each of the remaining officers with the samefairness it served him. he implores the state's attorney to refocus her analysis and dismiss the charges. these are good people. while mr. gray's death is no doubt tragic on many levels, maintaining these prosecutions only propels the tragedies to another level. >> you are, again, looking at live pictures right now from baltimore. as you can imagine, this trial being watched very closely. all six of these cases being watched very closely, and just after the verdict was read, again, not guilty on all charges for officer edward nero, there was some reaction from people on the streets. let's listen. >> every day gangbangers, not
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one time have i been mistreated. situations happen. it's how you handle this matter. i feel this family's heart. i'm telling y'all, no justice. this is why they say no justice, no peace. you can't have peace when you put my son in the grave. come on, y'all. if it was your child, come on, be honest with yourself. this is not right. he has a right to hurt. he has a right to have son. >> that could have been my son. i have an 8-year-old son that lives in this community. what happens to him? >> this is a reminder, of course -- this is a case -- this was a tragedy that ignited simmering tensions in the city of baltimore. you remember the nights of marches and protest and the violence we did see in the aftermath of it all, and now, of course, everyone is waiting to see what kind of reaction
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happens in light of this verdict. with us now, danny cevallos is back with us, paul cowan is here as well. we were talking about danny to get his gut reaction. your reaction to the verdict? >> i'm not surprised by the verdict. i think anybody who followed the case closely saw what an uphill battle prosecutors had in proving a case here. bear in mind, this officer was charged essentially with having caused or contributed to a catastrophic spinal injury that was eventually sustained by freddie gray, and, of course, he died subsequently. at the time of his arrest, however, which is the only thing that this officer was involved with, the officer pursued freddie gray when he ran on orders of a superior, and then essentially brought him into police custody, put him into a police van. now, he didn't put a seat belt on him. that's an allegation, but to say that not putting a seat belt on somebody is a crime, how many mothers don't put seat belts on their kids when they get into a car? i mean, are we going to charge
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them with crimes when they do that? that's essentially the argument that was made by the defense. >> well, there was a directive. there had been a directive days before -- >> an e-mail. >> an e-mail that anyone who is put in a police van like that was supposed to have been put in a seat belt. the defense argued he hadn't read the e-mail and the judge deemed that in and of itself did not constitute a crime. i want to bring in laura coates to join in the discussion. we heard from billy murphy representing the family of freddie gray, again, who died while in police custody. you're seeing video, a reminder of that arrest that happened now more than one year ago today. laura, billy murphy was very careful not to criticize the judge, barry wmenilliams, who m this decision from the bench. in fact, he praised the judge at length for how he approached this decision. but he did note that this doesn't give an indication of what happens in the trials that will come later. five more. the next one being for caesar goodson, who is the driver of
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the van and by some accounts many people think perhaps in the most legal jaepdy heeopardy her. >> that's true. and whoo this case does foreshadow may not be all charges, but we have a theme. and the theme is the driver was the ultimate person responsible for freddie gray to be seat belted. the prosecution was going on a very novel theory that could have led to very absurd results. for example, their theory was that by touching freddie gray, even just to give him an inhaler, which officer nero did, and arresting him and not ultimately having him charged would actually lead to an assault charge on an officer. and as a prosecutor, i can tell you it's the prosecutor who is the one who is in charge of deciding whether or not to criminally charge somebody in the long run. so if an officer was now going to be held accountable for every arrest that did not lead to a chargeable offense, we would have thousands of assaults every
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day by police officers that would go potentially unpunished. >> officer nero acquitted on all the charges he was facing. this is the first verdict in all of the six officers that were charged, one mistrial. he will be tried again. more trials to come and the officers involved in the rest and then -- then the subsequent death of freddie gray. we're going to continue to watch as reaction is coming in in the city and reaction about this case and what it means going forward. laura, thank you very much. danny, paul, thank you as well. some other news to focus on. a new poll shows donald trump and hillary clinton, they are tied. there's also some other bad news in there for the two front-runners. kellogg's® frosted mini-wheats®... 8 layers of wheat... and one that's sweet. for the adult and kid in all of us. ♪ kellogg's frosted mini-wheats® feed your inner kidult
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it's tied, folks. the presidential race all tied up in four polls essentially that have come out in the last week. they all show essentially the same thing. this one from abc news and "the washington post." the other ones say essentially the same thing within two or three points, some have hillary on top, but it is very, very close. let's discuss. we're going to bring in doug heye, former rnc communications director. susan del percio, republican strategist, former official in the rudy giuliani administration. jeff dewitt is the arizona state pressurer, and steve ellen dorff, the former campaign manager for john kerry's 2004 presidential bit. doug, kate bolduan say polls are a snapshot in time. i >> i'm the first to ever say that. >> if this is a snapshot, imagine an instagram photo right now, what is the caption? >> the caption is this is a dead heat. it's still early but it's a dead
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heat and as you walked about earlier, when you peel away at the polling, these are the two most unpopular candidates which means it's going to be a long slog, not very inspirational candidate. we of the moveable object versus the resistible force is going to be world war none and there will be no winners in this. >> six different cliches there. >> that was good, doug. >> i'm out of them now. >> exactly. you're done for the rest of the segment. steve, remember, i do recall rlier in the primary when the word was that team clinton wanted to take on donald trump over the other 25,000 republicans that were in the republican primary at one point because they thought he was the guy that was going to be easier to beat. i imagine they might not be saying that now. thoughts? >> i think team clinton has always believed this was going to be a very close election, a closely contested primary and a closely contested general. the country is deeply divided, but i am confident contrary to what doug just said, we are
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going to have a winner. somebody is going to win in november and be the next president of the united states. there's a lot more information voters will get between now and then. when they get that information, i'm confident hillary clinton is going to win. >> steve with a bold prediction that someone will win. >> susan del percio, how do the republicans do that? look at the numbers we saw, the internal yms we saw. >> the breakdowns. they're right here. >> it's donald trump doing well with traditional republican coalition voters, whites, seniors, men, also doing well with independents. hillary clinton leading by a lot among african-americans, latinos, women, and young voters. >> fur the trump campaign, how do you maximize these breakdowns to your effect. >> the breakdowns you just mentioned really just show that he's exactly where mitt romney ended his campaign in 2012. so where can he grow? i think the most interesting thing in those polls that we've seen is his growth with independents and the fact that he is not hurting other
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candidates as much as we thought we would see in down ballot races. so those independents that are swinging to 13 points since the last poll for "the washington post" poll is really significant. so he can grow actually with white men. he can grow with seniors. it's not going to take a lot right now for him to just tweak it a bit. the question is if that's only if he stays on his current path. donald trump, we never know what's going to happen next and how that can affect turnout. >> also, if he stays on his current path, jeff, that also means you could be looking at a candidate who could do you think actually win with a 60% unfavorable rating? do you think he can win with like a 60% unfavorable rating? do you think he can win the white house? >> well, i think that's going to turn around. you know, the primary was very, very bruising and very, very tough, but remember when we talk about demographics, that donald trump beat both the cuban heritage primary opponents with latinos, and so he does very
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well with the other demographic groups, and i think he'll do great. i know, i think america has finally figured out this is not a pop lair contest. we are choosing a leader, and with donald trump we have one of the most decisive and best leaders that our country has produced, and, of course, not every decision is going to be popular but we need to make tough choices and he's the person to make that. i'll disagree with doug on one comments when he says he doesn't think the next leader will be inspirational. donald trump is very inspiring. when you look at the crowds he's bringing out and the people that are coming and voting that have never voted before, that is inspiration. and so i think we have a very inspirational leader, and i think those polls are going to keep swinging in donald trump's favor as we move closer to the election. >> doug heye, are we only talking about two candidates right now? other thing these polls show is that there are folks out there asking for a third party or at least open to the idea. 47% say they consider an independent or third-party candidate. that is way higher than we saw in 2008 or 2012 at this time, and you have this libertarian ticket possibly of gary johnson,
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former republican governor of new mexico, along with bill weld, former republican governor of massachusetts. viable? >> well, it's certainly viable to create a distinction in the campaign as we saw with ralph nader going back to 2000 where he certainly helped george w. bush win the campaign which was not his goal when he got in. but it ultimately, again, speaks to the reality of america doesn't like the two choices that it has right now. they're looking for something else. ultimately the overwhelming majority of voters, i will not be voting for donald trump, i will not be voting for hillary clinton, but the overwhelming number of voters will vote for the two of them. does a third-party candidate pull enough and in particular states, and that's where you win niece things, to make a difference. >> before we talk about a third-party candidate, do you remember that hillary clinton is still fighting in a primary, a primary that bernie sanders just took up to like ludicrous speed if you want to make a "space balls" analogy. on the sunday shows -- do you like that? >> yeah. >> on the sunday shows says
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hillary clinton would be the lesser of two evils, yes, george stephanopoulos asked if that's what he thinks of her, and he said, well the voters are saying that. call it backtracking, whatever you want. he didn't say no. what do you want to see team clinton do with that? >> well, we've had a closely contested primary, and we've got to remember in 2008 hillary clinton fought to the end until california against barack obama and then unified the party. and i think the party will get unified very quickly, and the most important number in a lot of these polls is the popularity of barack obama, and i think barack obama is going to do more work than anyone to bring the party together, get us on the right track, and win this election. >> all right. doug, steve, susan, jeff, thanks so much for being with us. appreciate the discussion, guys. >> thanks. coming up for us, resistant and downright hostile. some republican donors claim they will sit this election out. one investor calls donald trump ignorant, amoral, dishonest, and manipulative. you get the sense he doesn't like him. >> he doesn't like him.
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>> so can donald trump win without their money? also, we're following breaking news in the fight against isis. the u.s. now involved in the efforts to recapture the iraqi city of fallujah. hear what american forces are doing in that fight. don't let dust and allergies get between you and life's beautiful moments. with flonase allergy relief, they wont. most allergy pills only control one inflammatory substance. flonase controls six. and six is greater than one. flonase changes everything. this... is how it begins... with a mighty roar... that tells the world... we're coming for you.
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manipulative. city of fallujah. manipulative. city of fallujah.
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we have breaking news out of iraq this morning. u.s. forces now involved with the fight to take back the isis stronghold of fallujah. >> let's talk more right now with cnn chief national security correspondent jim sciutto and counterterrorism analyst phillip mudd. jim, first to you. what are you hearing about u.s. involvement here. what's the role? >> kate, and john, to be clear this is involvement from the air. 21 u.s. air strikes on fallujah in the last six days. these from both fighters and drones in support of this iraqi ground offensive. it is a major offensive against what is a major prize in this ongoing fight with isis. fallujah, just to the west of baghdad, important in its own right as an effective capital of anbar province to the west of baghdad but a base for staging
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operations inside baghdad. having that kind of base there has certainly helped isis carry out this wave of terror we've seen in the last couple of weeks killing hundreds of people in the capital, baghdad. this battle goes on. question is, is it successful? you've got a lot of iraqi forces but certainly dug in to fallujah. >> and then the question of what constitutes success there because fallujah has been a sunni stronghold for 16 years in that nation. they had liberated from iraqi insurgents in 2004 and 2005 and once again, from isis and i understand, there may be shia y mi militias involved in that. >> you could take a city reduced to rubble and the locals are
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told to leave. the government will have questions about whether they have the ability to govern this territory and things like education, water, food. so i think, john, in the short-term, they can take the territory. there will be a lot of loss of life and this will take a while. throughout anbar province, as you suggested, a sunni area into northern iraq over the course of years, there will be questions about whether they can hold it and whether they can govern it. i'm not sure they can. >> what's your assessment of the iraqi stability in general? >> reporter: not great. you've seen the pictures twice in the last month. you've had regular iraqi citizens storm the palace, the seat of the iraqi government. you'll remember the pictures of them inside where the iraqi parliament meets. that's frustration, not just with the security situation in iraq, but with the perception there that not everyone is represented by this government. certainly, corruption is a
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concern, but it's a shiite dominated government. does it represent all? the answer to the question is no. you've got alabadi. a political battle at home to maintain political stability but also this ongoing battle for the very survival of this country and you have some of the toughest battleground fights to come, certainly, in fallujah but of course, the big prize, mosul. iraq's second largest city and that gets pushed back. >> a lot going on there. president obama today confirming that a u.s. air strike has taken out the leader of the taliban, mansour. you've done work in afghanistan. in iraq. your experience battling groups like this is, can you lop off the head? does this make a difference, phil. >> i'm not sure it will over the long haul.
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taking leadership. al qaeda is nothing like what it was 15 years ago. can bear fruit. but if the local population supports the insurgent group as they do with the taliban in afghanistan, taking out the leadership alone doesn't work for a simple reason, john. that is, the afghan government, the afghan military does not have the capability to project power into provinces. the taliban in some cases presents a better alternative for the local population. until you persuade the local population in afghanistan that the government in kabul is a better alternative, you can't win this one. >> president obama, i mean, he called it an important milestone in announcing it. excuse me, in announcing it today. jim what, does it change from the u.s. perspective, do you believe? >> we're talking about the taliban strike? >> yes, exactly. >> listen, it's an important strike to take out the leader of this group which the u.s. blames for literally tens of thousands of deaths in afghanistan. that's afghan civilians, afghan
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soldiers, but also coalition and american soldiers. but as phil has said, and others, those leaders do get replaced but the question, what kind of disruption? it's not the end of the taliban by any means. we did see an internal battle after it was finally confirmed that mullah omar had died although three years before, you saw a battle then. you're likely to see another one now. that probably disrupts things for a bit but the taliban is strong on the ground. they've taken a lot of territory. that they've proven their ability. short-term disruption, no clarity this is a medium or long-term defeat. >> jim sciutto, phil mudd. thank you. >> fareed zakaria is hosting an hour long special on terror called "why they hate us" premieres at 9:00 eastern only on cnn. shifting gears now. deeper pockets, deep disgimisgi.
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some refusing to give money to donald trump, that's what "the new york times" is reporting after contacting dozens of wealthy republican backers. apparently, there is some serious bad blood. here's a little taste of how one prominent donor described donald trump on the record, mind you. he's an ignorant, amoral, dishonest, manipulative, misogynistic, philandering, hyper-- >> hard to say in one breath. apologies. contributing editor for "the review" online. if he's running in a general election campaign and all of this big money donors are saying, no thanks. >> it's a minor headache for donald trump. it's a major headache for reince priebus in the rnc. look, if you're donald trump, you demonstrated one thing very well during the primary season. you're really good at getting
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your message out between the commercial breaks. they cover his rallies live. he creates a lot of controversy. a plane disappears and manages to attach himself by speculating early it's terrorism. that's the good news for trump. but the infrastructure, the get out the vote operation. do you have offices in all of these places and turn out in places like ohio which apparently they have no trump worker people working in ohio right now. kind of important. you might want to have that. right now, hillary clinton has got staff offices all across the state. how much of a head start can you give her? i know the polls are looking not so bad but this is kind of the blocking and tackling of presidential campaigns. >> i talked to some donors and fundraisers who worked for decades raising money for presidential campaigns. they will give but they're not going to raise. they're not going to go out there and work. i'm wondering what you're hearing. >> very similar. look, obviously, the republican
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party is not a unified block. although, the large majority of the rankin file is lining up behind hillary clinton. the attitude of the nra convention. they weren't really totally in love with donald trump. there was a pledge he'll give you a different kind of white house, notice, not better, different, but it's not hillary clinton. and that for a lot of republicans is the worst possible scenario. so they'll take the unreliable ally over the certain foe. how fired up can you get over that? >> but when it comes to just the dollars and cents, it seems everyone thinks hillary clinton will easily pass the billion-dollar mark. president obama, mitt romney, they both surpass the billion-dollar mark the water mark for running a presidential campaign. can donald trump, do you think, get to the billion dollar mark without these folks? >> he said, i could always sell one of my buildings because we know how quickly and easily you could take a skyscraper and turn
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it into cash. when he says things like that, i believe one of the other donors said if he's got $10 billion, why do i need to write a check for him? >> we have about one minute left. i want to talk about meeting with bob corker. a possible vp pick perhaps. what do you make of this meeting, the significance of it? >> donald trump could do much worse than bob corker as his running mate and probably will. corker is reasonably well respected on capitol hill and organized how they will vote and bad blood among conservatives. wait a minute, you gave the democrats the advantages. but on the other hand, i do believe corker made some money in real estate. they have something to talk about there. >> do you -- >> there you go. >> sell a sky scraper in two
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days. thank you very, very much. a lot going on today. thank you so much for joining us at this hour. >> much more on the verdict in the trial of the death of freddie gray. a not guilty verdict in baltimore. "legal view with ashleigh banfield" starts right now. and hello everyone. i'm ashleigh banfield. welcome to "legal view." we'll begin with this legal breaking news. edward nero has been found not guilty on all of the charges he was facing regarding the death of freddie gray. nero was charged with second degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office, and reckless endangerment. he elected to have a bench trial, meaning it was a judge making a final decision on the verdicts and not a jury of his

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