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tv   Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  September 6, 2016 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT

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call. cnn as he exclusive new polls show donald trump at a virtual tie with hillary clinton. the republican gaining ground after weeks of lagging behind. what is driving trump's numbers up? fighting over veterans. trump meets with military families and wins the support of dozens of retired generals. this as he is accused of disrespecting veterans. who is winning the commander in chief test? called to investigate. republicans are pushing for another federal probe of hillary clinton's e-mails. i'll talk to the chairman of the house oversight committee that his concern the key evidence may have been destroyed. and iran escalates its high seas harassment of the u.s. navy. we have new details of another iraq maneuver that put americans at risk. we welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room."
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tonight, donald trump and hillary clinton are trading new attacks out there on the campaign trail as our exclusive new cnn/orc poll shows trump edging ahead of clinton among likely voters nationwide. the two presidential nominees now in a virtual tie as the race moves into the final stretch. we're standing by to hear from trump soon at a rally in north carolina. tonight the republican is denying any link between $25,000 donation made by his foundation back in 2013 and the controversy surrounding trump university. that donation helped fund the re-election of bondi. uponi later decided not to investigate allegations of fraud at trump university. also tonight, hillary clinton is dismissing the push regarding her e-mails. all those questions, a house panel is asking the justice department to determine if clinton and her aides destroyed
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evidence and obstructed justice when files were deleted from her private server. i'll talk to the congressman in charge of that committee. the house oversight and government reform chairman. and our correspondents and analysts are standing by. we'll bring you full coverage of the top stories. up first, more on the trump campaign and cnn's exclusive new polls. >> the trump campaign has some reason to celebrate. trump has nearly wiped out clinton's national lead in this new poll ask this race is now basically in a dead heat. you see here in this new poll. trump is just barely ahead at 45% to clinton's 43%. but it is not all good news for donald trump. this poll also reveals some major areas of vulnerabilities of him on the question of his temperament and if he is ready for the responsibility to be commander in chief. so it is refocusing on national security to try to minimize those areas of doubt.
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>> donald trump is an across the board play to flex his national security muscle. >> we shouldn't have been in iraq but we should not have gotten out the way we got out. isis evolved all of the turmoil, the weakness, the stupidity of decisions from hillary clinton to barack obama. >> he is campaigning today with retired general michael flynn in virginia. >> people say as an example, russia. hillary likes to play tough with russia. putin looks at her and he laughs. >> as his running mate mike pence focuses on the optics. >> it has been amateur hour on the world stage for the last seven and a half years. donald trump showed you can have broad shoulders and still stand with grace and poise on the international stage. >> the synchronized effort includes 88 millimeters, announcing their support for
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trump and calling for course correction in our national security posture. as the trump team tries refocus national security, trump is still shifting stance on immigration is raising more questions about the cornerstone issue of his campaign. >> i'm not ruling out anything. trump is refusing to close the door on allowing undocumented immigrants to get legal status without leaving the country. telling reporters mono over. >> we'll make that decision into the future. good question. i'm glad you asked. that decision will be made. >> trump leaving open the possibility in an interview with abc news saying it could be some undocumented immigrants get on stay. add go, i'm going to make a decision or somebody will, whether it is me or somebody else. by that time we'll have a secure border. we'll have a wall. that position stands in direct conflict with what trump said less than a week ago. that major immigration policy speech in arizona. >> for those here illegally today, who are seeking legal
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status, they will have one route and one route only. to return home and apply for reentry like everybody else. >> and the seemingly endless shift in trump's position is leaving many to question whether this is a calculated strategic move on his part to intentionally keep his stance vague. right now he is leaving a lot more question marks than firm answers. >> thank you. tonight, trump is holding a rally in greenville, north carolina. cnn political reporter is on the scene for us. what are you learning about trump's expected remarks tonight? >> reporter: we are expecting trump to continue hammering home the national security measure. but to do it by going after hillary clinton and her e-mails. he was speaking to a senior adviser who that that because of her previous behavior, she wouldn't even be allowed a top security clearance today.
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they're expecting donald trump to say, she obstructed justice and that the notion that she forgot what she put in these e-mails, she forgot, is the kind of event doesn't steam work for anyone but the clintons. and as i symbol of how important they think this is, they believe this disqualifies her to be commander in chief. >> who will be with trump at this big rally in north carolina, sarah. >> we saw a number of them earlier. rudolph giuliani is expected to continue with him today in north carolina as well as michael flynn and as well as his daughter, ivanka trump. and even though it looks and sounds like a big raucous rally behind me, this will be another event when donald trump gives his remarks off the teleprompter. >> we'll stand by for trump's remarks. let's talk about a new push to launch another investigation of hillary clinton's e-mails. joining us now, chairman of the
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house oversight and government reform committee. thanks very much for joining us. let's talk about your new investigation. i want to play an exchange that hillary clinton had with reporters. she was asked what you're up to. >> on the investigation, he's asked for the u.s. attorney to look into whether your aides deleted e-mails that had been subpoenaed. do you have any concerns that e-mails were deleted after they were already supposed to be preserved and did you ask for them to be deleted? >> of course not. i have no concern. none. >> neither did the fbi. >> i don't know if you could hear it but she said i have no concern on either count, none, and neither did the fbi. what are you up to? >> that's not true. the fbi said she didn't look at the testimony she gave under congress. remember it was in 2015, yearsar she left office on, march 3, the select committee if benghazi issues a preservation order.
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march 4 they send a scene that. a march 10 they go out on television and say they have preserved all of these e-mails. then it is march 25, literally days later, that there's actually a conference call. between david kendall and cheryl mills, her top advisers. guess than a week later, there is actually documents that are destroyed. work orders that document this. all new information we helped glean from the fbi report and questions we have. these aren't hillary clinton's e-mails. >> i know you asked james comey to investigate her testimony before congress, whether she purgeured herself. as the fbi launched an investigation? have you made that request? >> we did. i was shocked after nearly a year of investigation, the fbi never looked at her testimony under oath before the house of representatives or the united states senate. >> have they launched the
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investigation? >> they will never confirm or deny whether or not they've done it. but the house has responsibility. these are not hillary clinton's e-mails. these federal records and i believe it is the biggest breaches of security in the history of the state department. you can't just let thought classified information in four years of records go out the door without some accountability and without us making sure that it never happens. >> here's the criticism of you and your supporters. there have been so many of these investigations already by members of congress, congressional committees including your own as well as the fbi. no criminal charges have been filed against hillary clinton. you heard what james comey said. what do you realistically hope might emerge? >> when the fbi director testifies that they never even looked at that. when the fbi director confirms -- >> that was not their responsibility. >> so we have waited patiently. you didn't see us doing hearings on this. hillary clinton is the time that
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chose this time. she came one this convenient relationship with herself and you have to beg the question, what about the foundation? was the interaction with the state department, was that official business? >> tell us specifically what you're looking for. >> i want to get to the truth and make sure this never happens again. >> specifically what? >> what did she do or not do with those documents some the proximity of the time line is stunning. she holds these e-mails for years. does not turn them over. she said it is for convenience but she holds on to them. then within days of a conference call with her two lead attorneys and assistants, there is the destruction of documents. now we know from the fbi that those e-mails have been recovered by the fbi, 14,900 new documents we haven't seen. the associated press is suing for years, has been suing in court under the freedom of information act just trying on get hillary clinton owes calendar. >> between now and november 8, the election, what are you plan on doing if anything? >> we have three maergs will be
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happening if rapid succession. >> who will testify? >> the first will be on thursday. we want to know under the freedom of information act, what about all those responses to congress? what about the responses to the freemtd of information act? we'll have under secretary clinton and some people in charge of foia. we want to bring up the people who make the classifications and the redactions on these documents. the information has shown us should not be redacted. so we want to know about that. and then i want to get at the i.t. geeks. they are the ones who really know what's happening. according to the fbi reports, some of these people evidently pled the fifth. and the time line really doesn't look request for what clinton did with these federal records. >> the majority leader, he got into a lot of trouble when he said the entire thing, benghazi, all of these investigations, in effect he said they're political. look at hillary clinton. look how her numbers have gone down as a result of this. the accusation against you, you're doing this now for
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political reasons. >> no. hillary clinton chose this time line. she came one this convenient relationship with herself. she's the one who delayed the release of these for so long. even to this day, the state department has still not turned over to congress all the information and we just got the fbi report a couple weeks ago. no matter the election, i'm the chairman of the oversight committee. of course we're going to do this investigation. these are federal records. if inappropriately left, they should not happen and i don't care what's going on with the election. >> let's say she's elected. will you continue. >>? absolutely. whether she wins or loses. i have a duty under the constitution to fulfill my constitutional duty to provide check is that balance. that's what the chairman of the oversight committee does. >> very quickly. james comey's bottom line assessment that we all heard against launching any criminal charges against hillary clinton, did he do the right thing? >> i think mr. come zla he a man of great integrity. i don't think he had a political desire to do one thing or the other. i disagree with his final
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assessment of intent. when he hand even looked at those things as important to the house of representatives as anything, i have a commitment to look into it wherever it leads us. >> you've seen the latest accusations against trump. that his charitable foundation gave $25,000 to the attorney general, to group supporting pam bondi, that he was doing it to convince her not to launch an investigation into trump university. the irs later said the contribution was illegal. they fined this charitable contribution $2,500. is that something you want to look into as well? >> well, i don't see the federal jurisdiction in this it's case. it does look to be a state issue. it is regarding an attorney general in florida. i don't see the federal jurisdiction that the federal records in this clinton case. >> because the accusation is there is a double standard. you only want to look at democrats. you don't want to look at
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republicans. >> i have a clean record of looking very hard and i've been very critical of mr. trump along the way. if emsomething wrong, i want to call balls and strikes as they come across the plate. in this case, hillary clinton has lied time and time again. she's not been truthful. even today on the airplane she's not telling the truth if she said the fbi gave her a clean bill of health. that's not true. >> they gave her a clean bill of health on what she testified. they didn't look into her testimony with congress. have you endorsed trump for president? >> yes. originally i was with marco rubio. i said i would support the nominee and i do, compared to hillary clinton? from my political vantage point? my goodness. >> do you think he's been truthful? >> i do. i do. in comparison to hillary clinton? i'm 100% certain that she will look into the camera and just lie, lie, lie. >> we have more questions for you. stay with us. we'll take a quick break. we'll resume this conversation right after this.
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i won this 55 inch tv for less than $30 on visit for great deals. and start bidding today! we're back with the chairman of the united states house committee on oversight and government reform. tomorrow you'll be releasing the findings of a cyber attack on the u.s. government of personnel management. thousands and thousands of people have a lot of their private, personal information stolen. can you give us the upshot? what's the bottom line? what happened here? who was responsible for that? >> unfortunately, there will be both people bombarding our personnel systems all the time. there were more than 20 million people with personal
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identifiable. i think the people had put in the wrong person at the office of personnel management. he sits corrected. nibble beth co-bert. we have to have a zero tolerance. there has to be zero trust in these computer networks. there has to be dual authentic indication. right now we're not operating at thement on mum level. >> 20 million federal workers. >> they have a lot of private information. who did it some. >> well, i can't get into the details of that but on our report we'll show that once we knew this was happening, he with did not take right, make the right moves to make sure that we were extracting out of the system. >> was a foreign government responsible? >> i do think it came from overseas. but i can't name that. >> i have been told it was china. i don't know if that's what you've could not cheweded. maybe you can give us an indication. >> when i see classified information, i won't share it.
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i do believe it is classified and i can't talk about that. >> who has got a stronger cyber attack capability? china or russia? >> well, you have to worry about both. throws the two nation states that have the capability. there's a guy in a van by the river who is probably pretty good at hacking into the river too. >> why would they want this information about employees, federal workers at the office of personnel management? what is russia or china or any other country, why do they need this? >> they got in through department of interior. once they were in, they could map out basically the government of the united states. if you're trying to figure out who is dealing in classified information, who is dealing with intelligence, who is dealing with all those things that maybe they want to know about a country, they can figure out who is moving where and who has what security clearances. what did their finger print look like? if you are operating on behalf of the united states of america, and doing some stuff that is maybe classified, you don't want that out in the information.
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that was let on it. >> is russia hacking right now dnc, other democratic institutions, to try to have an impact on the outcome of the presidential election? the accusation is that the russians want trump elected. >> i think there has to be an assumption from the united states that these outside entities, whether they be nation states or rogue individuals or terrorists, are protocol not only at democrats but also republicans and at the federal government. if you don't have the proper cleansing tools. if you dome implement the very basic hygiene on your systems, where you're living in iowa and at your banking information to somebody who serves at the cia, look out. they're coming to get it. >> we haven't seen any evidence that republican institutions, political parties or anything were hacked. only democrats. >> very concerned that the dnc was hacked. i think they should be pursued and i think they should be absolutely prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. i think one of the big burning questions -- >> who should be prosecuted? >> nice try.
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i can't tell you exactly who it is. >> but the foreign government, the foreign institution who did it. >> i think one of the big policy questions for the country is how do you fire back in this cyber war? there is a cyber war that's going on, america, wake up. it is happening as we speak. how you fight that. we've got some real good smart people but it is a tough political question. and policy question. >> yesterday the president said the u.s. has the strongest defensive and offensive capabilities in cyber warfare. that was seen as a real threat to some of the foreign actors. you want to play this game. the united states has better capabilities. >> the report that went out yesterday, 22 plus million americans other worked for the federal government even made an application since the 1980s, their information is in the hands of the bad guys. >> thank you for coming in. >> thank you. just ahead, hillary clinton says donald trump has something to hide. she is raising questions about his honesty. she is trailing trump badly when it comes to voter trust.
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borger, brianna keeler and david, gloria, donald trump seems to be, some are saying, intentionally trying to confuse us about his position. and granding some sort of legal status to at least some of the undocument immigrants here in the united states. it seems to be going back and forth. is he doing this deliberately to get some support? >> we don't know for sure. i would think it makes sense to saert degree. he is looking to pick up the inn voters, suburban women, republican women who might think they don't want to rote for someone intolerant. so when you confuse the issue a little bit, you're not sure whether there is a pathway to citizenship or mass deportation may no longer be on the table right away, these were issues that he was very clear and very straightforward about during the campaign, if you'll recall. ?
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he accused anyone who was not with him. and i think it serves his purpose to confuse things to a great degree. >> the national security credentials, he now has a letter sign by 88 retired generals and admirals who are supporting him right now. some are saying, john mccain and others, what is his goal here? who is he trying on appeal to. >> many veterans. even according to our poll today, it bolsters this notion veterans have been in his corner. it might have shid a little bit. there was concern in republican circles that they were sliding after his attack on the gold star family, the khans. he needs them big time. marchly in states like virginia which many republicans think is gone. they're writing it off. the trump campaign is not because they need virginia. one of three scenarios on the
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path to 270 electoral votes. he needs that. to your question, is he intentionally confusing people, i think that you're being kind. there's a strategy here. >> my sense is that if he had his druthers, if they could rewind to the beginning of, i guess, the end of the weekend, he wouldn't have done this and he would have tried to stay focused on military issues. on issues of jobs and trade and states like ohio and not rehashed the immigration issue which they were hoping they would put to bed. and the sleepy last week of the summer. >> he has another issue, the $25,000 donation from a charitable foundation. the irs said it was illegal to pam bondi, the attorney general of florida. she didn't go ahead and launch an investigation into trump university. how much of a problem is this for trump? >> it is hard to know with the people who support him.
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it won't be a problem. the question is, he tries to broaden his appeal. in you look at what happened, it is more damming than what happened with the chin foundation which he has called the most corrupt enterprise in political history. just look at the nakts mid to hate august of 2013. bondi solicits this donation personally. this is what we flernld a consultant to her re-election campaign. the consultant said she didn't know that there was an issue with trump university. you had the new york state attorney general who was launching this investigation against donald trump. he was pushing back on it. but then fast forward to september 13 of that same year. pam bondi said for the first time. she's considering joining this new york state probe. and four days later, receives a check, the group backing her up receives a check. and then spoof! this goes away.
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donald trump was asked, why are you donating to a north state official? he said she was really good at her job. she was a good recommendive. >> and donald trump is someone who says, before i sbeenl politics, i was in the system. that's what you have to do. he often said that. >> yeah. he said it a lot. i have to get along with everybody. he said that several time in debates. that was my job as a businessman. now i'm a politician. this, what she's talking about happened while he was running for president. >> and you have a surrogate saying, this is an issue. they're saying this is a clerical error. but that means meaning it shouldn't have come from the trump foundation, meaning it should have come from him personally. but the issue isn't necessarily it was a -- clerical error. money wherever it came from.
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it went to pam bondi. four days later, that's an incredible coincidence and one that donald trump would be all over hillary clinton about. >> what about the whole roger ailes issue? 20th century fox paid $20 million to gretchen carlson, the former fox anchor who had these sexual allegations against roger ailes. obviously, he no longer works at fox news. but he is an informal unfull adviser to donald trump. potentially, this could be a problem. especially now that this $20 million settlement has come forward. >> it doesn't look good for trump or the trump campaign. at the same time, polls consistently show that trump is up among men voters. clinton is up among women voters. i think the table is set for this. trump has made a series of sexist statements during the
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campaign and before that. so if man or woman -- more importantly for trump the immigration issue and for trump the e-mail issue. they're going to be questioned about it. >> the question is what is roger ailes doing for donald trump? what is his actual role? i interviewed kellyanne conway a couple weeks ago and she said he's an informal adviser. but we've been reporting that he has been involved in more than one of trump's debate sessions which he's done with his inner circle discussing message with him. i'm told that he was focused on how to be authentic, in his authentic self but still get his point across. the kind of thing that roger ailes has done success any for decades. but this guy, the fact some
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think is questionable. >> you'll see during first debate. if donald trump comes one some good zingers, i would guess they would have come from roger ailes who don't forget came one reagan's line against balancer mondale. i won't let your youth and inexperience hand cap you. >> he is brilliant at it. >> he is. and this is what trump is looking for. and we'll see if roger ailes gives to it him. >> we have a hot more to discuss including hillary clinton. she is now coming out with a new level of attacks against donald trump. we're going to update right after this. i'm anne howard and i'm michael howard. we left on our honeymoon in january 2012. it actually evolved into a business. from our blog to video editing... our technology has to hang tough with us. when you're going to a place without electricity, you need a long battery life. the touch, combined with the screen resolution... a mac doesn't have that. we wanted to help more people get out there and see the world.
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we're back with our mit team. and hillary clinton's new attacks as the race tightens dramatically and hillary clinton trails badly on this issue of trust. let's go to brianna. hillary clinton went after trump on several fronts today. >> that's right. his tax returns, his business dealings. she even talked about her health, her coughing attacks that have popped up recently, even yesterday on the trail. jokingly or not so jokingly feigns enthusiasm for talking to the media. hillary clinton taking questions
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from reporters for the second day in a row. on the new plane she now swhars the press. after avoiding a formal press conference for months. >> had so much fun yesterday. i didn't want to do this again. adventures on the plane. >> with polls showing the race tightening, clinton has become more accessible and more on offense. clinton criticizing trump for not releasing his tax returns. >> the list goes on and on. the scams, the frauds, the business activities, that have stiffed workers, refused to pay small businesses. so clearly his tax returnings tell a story that the american people deserve and need to know. >> she spent the day in battle ground florida. >> his whole campaign has been one long insult to all those who
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have worn the uniform to protect our most cherished american values. >> and her campaign is out with a new ad. >> donald trump compared his action siss to the sacrifices of two parents who lost their son in a war. >> high heighting trump's comments about the military and veterans. >> what sacrifice have you made for your country? >> i think i made a lot of sacrifices. built great structures. i've had tremendous successful. >> throws sacrifices? >> clinton is trying to convince voters they can't trust trump to lead on the world stage. most don't trust her period and they trust trump more. 50% of voters say trump is the more honest and trust worthy candidate compared to 35% who say clinton is. vice president joe biden telling cnn, clinton needs to open up. >> let them see your heart. >> she also it appears has allergies. >> every time i think about trump, i get allergic.
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>> her coughing fits have happened a few times on the trail including monday. and donald trump, the first nominee in modern history to openly engage in wild and false conspiracy theories is questioning her wellness. tweeting today, main stream media never covered hillary's massive hacking or coughing attack. yet it is number one trending. what's up? just the pollen count and she's upped her antihistamine. >> the advice is of course, don't talk for a day or two. that won't work. >> she has a lot of talking to do in the next couple months shelf won't have to do all the talking. we've found out that nader michelle obama as well as elizabeth warren will be hitting the campaign trail later this month to do some talking on her behalf. >> stay with us. let's talk a little about her openness to answer questions from reporters traveling with her. twice she has gone to the back
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of the plane to do that. what is behind sthit. >> do you know what? i'm not going on question it. hallelujah. don't look a gift horse in the mouth. what is behind it is obvious. she sees that she needs to fill voids. and it is true and it has always been true since the beginning of time. when you go and you talk on press, especially in a, kind of a small, intimate environment like when you go on the back of your own plane, you can get your message out. you can do it on the stump. the rally is a different kind of animal than having a discussion with reporters and talking about things that you want to talk about. especially when bits your opponent. donald trump has done that and most other candidates have done that for a long time. >> will that help her turn around the numbers on honesty and trust worthiness? >> it will help her. it will immediately turn around numbers. the more you do these things,
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the better you get at it. she is not officially good at official press conferences. she can control the environment in an air may not. she can come back when she wants to. she can leave when she wants to. there is a limited group of reporters. a limited amount of time and she can say, see you later. i'm going to my part of the may not. so they control the environment and it is a smart thing to do. >> as you pointed out, trump on this issue of honest write and trustworthiness is doing a lot better than hillary clinton. 50-thri 50-35. >> scary better. i think she is trying to take him on when it comes to trust worthiness. you saw unlt before things she latched on to today. it was an illegal donation by donald trump through his foundation to the then florida attorney general trying to get re-election. but she is looking at that. and i think probably, it is a little hard to turn around.
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for the two of them on this poll issue, it seems like a race to the bottom. she is trying to look at him in other ways. temperament, for instance. it is why we see the role models which we feel is very effective. and also this piece on veterans. she tries to make him look like an embarrassing leader in a way. >> that's what she is trying to do. another number that is probably disturbing to the hillary clinton campaign is this enthusiasm factor. it seems that republicans, trump supporters are a lot more enthusiastic about voting than hillary clinton supporters. >> they are. and i think this is part of the irony for the chin campaign. she has those low trust worthy numbers. she has the low enthusiasm candidates. she is not a change candidate. donald trump is a change candidate and bernie sanders is a change candidate. she is saying, i can't fix everything. we'll change the minimum wage. maybe we can do something on foreign policy ask tell it like it is to voters.
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yet -- >> in the national poll, national polls are very important. much more important are the battle ground states right now. and still in those key battle ground states, ohio or virginia or north. she is still ahead. >> she is. and donald trump has an up-hill chime. we all know that. democrats start out with an advantage and she has to win everything that mitt romney won. he is tight in arizona. >> and more. >> you're right. and more. he has to start out winning what romney won. and he has a past in north carolina. he has a battle in arizona. he has a battle in virginia, in colorado. so this is difficult for him. >> in utah, for example. >> even in georgia or north carolina. >> georgia and north carolina. >> one of the questions that will be fascinating to look at
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is who are not this national poll, obviously, if it is the first major one heading into the post labor daytime. whether it is the beginning of the battle ground states coming. lagging to where this national poll is. the one thing on the enthusiasm that i think is also fascinating, you reported michelle obama going out. his his warren is going out. you bet your bottom dhar that president obama is going out. the cavalry is available for her to get that enthusiasm gap closed. to get the numbers up. >> that's critically important. >> she has an a-list of surrogates. and trump, although he has commit supporters, he doesn't have the same. she well well underway.
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>> bernie sanders. he is starting to go out this now. she needs him out this. she needs young women. she needs demographic of younger african-american voters that she is not getting now and bernie sanders has to be a big part of that cavalry and go out there. and so far, let's see the enthusiasm from bernie sanders. >> he went out this week. >> he did. >> as her advisers know, there is a lot of work to do. >> stay with us. just ahead, generals for trump. dozens of military leaders are explaining why they're backing the republican presidential nominee. plus, iran is he is chating u.s. navy ships. we're learning the latest of provocative moves.
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>> tonight, iran's risky taunts of the u.s. navy. they are escalating and we are getting new details right now of the latest close encounter at sea. very disturbing information. our pentagon correspondent barbara starr is joining us. what are you learning, barbara? >> it happened on sunday, but word of this coming to light earlier today from the u.s. navy. the uss firebolt, a small patrol craft was operating in the persian gulf on sunday when it was suddenly swarmed, if you
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will, by seven iranian fast-attack craft, but then it got even more dangerous. one of the iranian boats actually came to a dead stop in the water right in front of the u.s. navy ship. it does not get more dangerous than that for the risk of a collision. the u.s. navy ship making a very sudden, sharp turn, but coming within 100 yards of that iranian attack aircraft. the iranians are upping their game in the persian gulf. 31 instances so far this year. >> very disturbing, indeed. the u.s. relationship with iran is just one of the many challenges facing the next commander in chief. tonight donald trump is touting a new show of support by 88 retired generals and admirals. you've been looking into this battle for national security endorsements. what are you finding? >> the candidates very often go for these military endorsements because it gives them gravitas if they want to be commander in
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chief. trump had interesting endorsements and one of them a retired army general reprimanded for disclosing classified information. >> michael flynn isn't shy about why he thinks donald trump should be the next president. >> my message to you is very clear, wake up, america! >> the trump campaign today released endorsements from 88 generals and admirals. mitt romney had over 500 national security endorsements. flynn promises there are more to come for trump. >> as soon as we got the word out to a bunch of people, that thing just filled up quickly and frankly, we had to cut it off this weekend. >> one of the most significant endorsements, major general gary harrell, the former commander of delta force who retired in 2008 after leading covert operations around the globe. another recognized name, retired lieutenant general william boynkin who was reprimanded by
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the army after retirement for disclosure of classified information in a book. one signatory says trump enjoys plenty of military support. >> we respect what mr. trump is doing and we believe in mr. trump and we're putting our faith and hope on mr. trump and the idea that he doesn't have support at this level is erroneous. >> some high-profile officers from recent conflicts like david petraeus, raymond odierno as well as william mccraven so far have not endorsed either candidate. one did, however, general john allen, the former complamander afghanistan has no hesitation to endorse hillary clinton. >> i stand with you tonight i retired four-star general of the united states marine corps. >> the recently retired chairman of the joint chiefs general martin dempsey said retired officer like allen and flynn should stay out of politics and
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political conventions writing, it was a mistake for them to participate as they did. it was a mistake for our presidential candidates to ask them to do so. >> three senior republican national security figures, condoleezza rice, robert gates and colin powell are also silent for now. clinton has not put out a list of military supporters though 50 republican foreign policy and national security experts and many veterans of george w. bush's administration signed a letter denouncing trump's candidacy and pledging not to vote for him. >> it is unclear if those still on the sidelines are simply waiting for the right moment or plan to just steer clear of election 2016 altogether. wolf? >> looks like a lot of them are going to steer clear. i want to get involved and i want to announce publicly who they support. it's obviously, a very, very sensitive subject especially for
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a retired u.s. military personnel, barbara star at the pentagon, thanks very much. a very strong report. >> that's it for me. thanks very much for watching. i'm wolf blitzer in "the situation room." thanks for watching. erin burnett "out front" starts right now. "out front" next, the breaking news. donald trump speaking live right now. new poll showing the race almost in a dead heat. hillary clinton insisting he release his tax returns insisting he has something to right and fox news suing roger ailes for $20 million. that same roger ailes now advising donald trump. let's go "out front." good evening. i'm erin burnett. out front now, the breaking news. donald trump speaking right now in a major r


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