tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN July 29, 2019 11:00pm-12:00am PDT
even when someone else writes the correct words on a teleprompter he struggles. and ad libs. this isn't about style, it's about substance. he says something to distort the right message. why? i don't see how he wins empowering a minority in the way that is galvanizing the majority. i know there are few one term presidents especially with a good economy and no massive threat abroad. this is not a normal time. this is not a normal president. know this about the debate tomorrow night the man or woman that shows this country they can be strong by building us up and bringing us together will find a country desperate to go along. thank you for watching tonight. the eve of a big occasion. "cnn tonight" with one of the stars of tomorrow night. starts now. >> he emboldens bigots. but bigots embolden him as well. not all supporters are bigots. but people out there who don't
stand up to this president. and so what category does that put you in? when it is obvious beyond a doubt. that what he is promoting is bigotry. use the word racist if you want. for me it's bigotry. it's about blacks. the brown me menace and antisemitism. he emboldens that sort of thing. he thinks it will help him. he knows it will help him politically. what does that say about americans. something like this can help him politically. it's unfathomable. i don't understand it. >> we're in a culture reversal. we spent years letting people know like this guy in gilroy that you need to stay down and
stay away. we are not about you. that has reversed. here's what i feel badly for. in detroit and the radio show i talk to people. he's doing them a disservice. who will finally find some way for government to care about them and people like them. now they have to own all this talk and a lot of them didn't sign up for that. they want manufacturing back and other things. you're right. some people cotton to him because of the hate. not all. >> there many reasons some people ho did it on tv do it because they feel they have to politically. they're getting paid. it's paycheck. >> others are afraid of him. >> other people do it because in some way they think it's a
reflection of them. if they call out his bad behavior, his bigotry and at times racism. that makes them either bigoted, racist or complicit. and i think that is something that you you have to dig deep. that's a fantastic question to ask yourself. in this moment. who am i? what am i? what am i supporting? is what i'm doing american? is this the best way not only for me and if my family, for this country as well. am i putting -- am i elevating or prioritizing bigotry and racism over the right thing to do. >> economic advantage as well. >> look, it's an obvious question. because you cannot say that i love the president because of economics and i don't like what he says. no. it's not like the guy is picking one team other another in a football game. these are real divisions and he's playing on them. they cannot be dismissed. they cannot. tomorrow night, you know how much i love you. it will be great to see you.
this is chance. this country is desperate for better. what man or woman can have a message and connection themselves as the proper agent for the message with the american people. it's great you'll bring up the conversation. >> that's an important question. we have many that we'll present to the candidates tomorrow night. always a pleasure. good night rest. we have more work to deal with here and in the future and beyond. chris cuomo the anchor of "prime time." thank you, sir. this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. live in detroit. we are counting down tonight one of the cnn democratic presidential debate. you see the clock. there it is. taking the stage tomorrow night at 8:00 p.m. eastern. williamson, ryan, klobuchar, buttigieg, sanders, warren, o'rourke, hickenlooper, delaney and bullock. wednesday.
bennet, gillibrand, castro, booker, biden, harris, gabbard, inslee and de blasio. two nights, 20 candidates. all vying for the nomination. to run against the president. each will get a chance to answer tough questions and make their case to the american voter. you'll hear the whole thing live here on cnn. of course. we have to talk about with the president of the united states what he's been doing. talk about his deliberate and intentional strategy of attacking people of color. we have to talk about that. i wish i could say i'm shocked or surprised. i'm not. you probably aren't either. it is happening too many times. for the man who launched his political career by pushing the
racist birther attack on president obama. the president is the race baiter in chief. using his attacks to stir up his base and distract you. his latest target is house over sight chairman elijah cummings. no coincidence. the president is riled up about the chairman's investigation of the administration. he goes on a twitter tirade. and his majority black district by the way. which includes much of baltimore calling it quote a disgusting rat and rodent infested mess. he goes onto tweet quote no human being would want to live there. no human being would want to live there.
more than 600,000 human beings hard working men and women, parents and children. grandmothers and grandfathers. they live in baltimore. they live in that city. imagine if that was your family. that the president is insulting. cummings doesn't have to imagine. you know why? he's the son of former sharecroppers. he was born and raised in baltimore. but the president insults him and degrades an entire community. doubles down by incredibly calling chairman cummings himself racist. by the way it's really rich for this president to be slamming baltimore calling it rat infested. since his son-in-law and his seen your adviser jared kushner family business owns thousands of baltimore apartments. apartments with a history of code violations. including rodent infestation. >> it's particularly ironic that the president is making comments when we know in 2017 that his
son-in-law directly contributed to some of the neglect that the president reportedly is so concerned about today. >> i want you to listen. please listen to what one former tenant of a kushner property told us. about what it was like to live in one of the apartments. >> so what was it like to hear rats at night? >> it was crazy. i could hear them gnawing. you can't see them. i could hear it. it just made me crazy. >> despite the president's claim that baltimore is rat infested, house republicans are holding their annual retreat there in september. i wonder if he'll speak at that retreat like last year. that word, infested. that word is a particularly loaded one coming from this president.
a word he sure likes to use when he's attacking people of color. you remember the attack on the four congresswomen. tweeting they should go back to the quote crime infested places from which they came. even though every one of them is an american citizen. you remember he tweeted that sanctuary cities which protect undocumented immigrants many of them people of color were crime infested. you remember when he tweeted ms 13 was infesting the country? infesting. over and over and over. in spite of that you're not hearing a full throated defense of congressman cummings from his good friend mark meadows. congressman. he couldn't even muster more than a secondhand defense if you can call it that. congressman meadows sent a text. giving him permission to read it out loud. on the lee with jake tapper. no one works harder for his
district than elijah. he's passionate and he's not a racist. i'm friends with both president trump and chairman cummings. i know them well. and neither is a racist. that after cummings stuck his income out to defend meadows on live tv after he took offense when he thought tlaib called him racist. >> if there's anyone who is sensitive or with regard to race, it's me. son of former sharecroppers that were basically slaves. so i get it. i listen very carefully to miss tlaib. i think and i don't want to put words in her mouth. but i think she said that she was not calling you a racist. and i thought we could clarify that. mr. meadows you know and of all the people on the this committee.
i have said it. and got in trouble for it. that you're one of my best friends. i know that shocks people. >> like wise. mr. chairman. >> you are. and i would do i can see and feel your pain. i feel it. so i don't think miss tlaib intended to cause you that. that kind of pain. and that kind of frustration. >> that was then. this is now. now things are different. so much for friendship. so much for reaching across the aisle when it is the right thing to do. for this president for this administration, might makes right. here's another saying for you. one that is pretty important to our country. it's right there on the
presidential seal. one of many. out of many, one. if you attack some americans, you attack all of us. if you call some of our american communities disgusting, filthy, rat infested. you insult all of us. if you say that no human being would want to live in baltimore, you don't just insult thousands who live there. human beings. you insult all of us. and for the president of the united states to do this to attack us, to insult us, it's unworthy of the office. i ask you before to imagine how you would feel if it were your family the president was
insulting. how would you feel? it is your family. the american family. the president hosted 20 faith leaders and pastors in the oval office today. one of the pastors says their meeting was not damage control in the wake of the president's attacks on congressman cummings and baltimore. he's reverend bill owen. i'll talk to him next. what democrats should learn from the last debate. we'll tell you what to watch for in the cnn democratic presidential debate tomorrow and wednesday. both nights beginning at 8:00 eastern. grab some pens. would shakespeare have chosen just "some pens?"
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faith leaders raise concerns about that? >> well, i think something was said in passing. i don't tune in to negative talk from any side. so, some things were mentioned and i took the position that we as black pastors should go fo baltimore and see what we can do to help. i'm not going to criticize if there's a need because i was born poor. when i was up until i was 8 years old. i lived in the two room house, no water, no lights, pot belly stove in the kitchen. and until i was 8 years old. >> pastor, we have a delay. pardon me for that. i want to for the sake of time. i don't mean to cut you off. the question was what did the president say about his attacks against the leaders of color and did any of the faith leaders raise concerns about that?
>> i don't remember him saying anything about the color leaders that are colored. that was some things discussed said, but i don't remember him referring to leaders of color. >> did anybody there raise concerns about what he's been saying lately about people like elijah cummings or anyone? >> well, that was not the purpose of the meeting today. today it was how can we help the black community. that is my concern. that was the purpose of the meeting. that is the reason i came to washington. that is my focus. helping our inner city young people especially. our children. young people. >> so the president tweeted today he was looking forward to his meeting with wonderful inner city pastors. any concern for you that the president used this meeting approximate black leaders to insulate himself from the criticism? >> i don't think so. i don't think that at all. i have been to the white house
four times in five months. there was nothing about insulating from anything. he wanted to hear from us. our concerns and what he could do to help us. >> so, you have said controversial things before in 2012 you equated president obama support of same-sex marriage to supporting child molestation. you walked that back. why should anyone take you serious? >> i never said that. i have never said that. i have a difference with obama about saying same-sex marriage. i never mentioned a child about a president obama. never, never, never. if i did, find it. >> this is a quote. if you watch the men who have been caught having sex with little boys all of them will say they're molested as a child. for the president to done this type of thing is irresponsible. he walked the comments back
saying he didn't think the president was condoning molestation. is that correct? >> i never felt the president was doing -- as a matter of fact the president is a gentleman. we had a deep conversation with a key assistant to talk about the things that we disagree. the only thing i disagree was same-sex marriage. that's it. reporters tried to get me into other avenues and i would not do it. i feel same sex marriage was -- i took that position and take it now. >> so i know it's hard for you, you think it's hard to believe that trump is racist. but he's repeatedly used racially charged language. and consistently attacks black and brown elected leaders. so, why is that hard to believe? pastor? >> i find president trump leaders of all colors. he attacks who he will. he's his own man.
i can't dictate what he should and shouldn't do. he doesn't just attack black people. he attacks anybody. and you know it. >> as a man of faith, a christian. he attacks anyone. it sounds like you're condoning attacks? is that christianly? godly? >> it's a statement of fact. i'm not condoning anything want president trump doesn't pick the people he attacks. because of color. he attacks anybody he feels needed. >> and is that okay with you? >> i'm not his judge. i have been attacked. let me tell you something, background. i was in seminary. and i started recruiting
students for this university. and i got criticism from my leaders. for ministers why are you down at that white man school? i'm used to criticism. we started out with three students and put 400 students in a university. that this ministry was born out of. asking the university to give the students a chance to go to college. >> i appreciate your giving me your biography. for the same of time, what does that have to do with the president? >> i was criticized then and i'm criticized now. direct or indirect. for meeting with the president. what i'm saying is i do what i can to help the young people. where ever it is however it is. and i have an agenda to help the black young people and poor people of any color throughout this country. i have done it and i'll do it again.
i will work with the president on that. >> did you work with president obama on that agenda? >> i worked with all presidents on that agenda. all presidents. i work with anybody that wants to help this country and help our inner city young people. i don't want them to go through what i went through to get where i am. thank god i'm blessed. starting from nothing on the other side of scratch. i have three university degrees. i thank god for that. he blessed me in this great country. >> pastor owens, thank you for coming on. i appreciate your time. >> thank you. >> we have more on the president's attacks on congressman cummings. one of my next guests reports president trump advisors think the attacks are good for him when it comes to his reelection in 2020. are they really? ♪
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and go see, fast & furious presents, hobbs & shaw. august 2. welcome back. we're live from detroit. president trump renewing his attacks on house over sight chairman cummings tonight. slamming over what he calls is zero help on the border. that after the president called congressman cummings district a disgusting rat and rodent infested mess that nobody wants to live in. larry the author of the kennedy half century. good evening, gentlemen. i want to go to you first, reporting president trump
advisers think the over all message in the attacks is good for the president. why is that? >> they think they only need to win specific states. they don't have to win the popular vote. they lost last time around. they're focusing on michigan where we are now. and wisconsin and pennsylvania. and believe the message to the white working class the president is standing up for you. he's patriot. and they're trying to turn the entire country into baltimore or urban area that maybe foreign to someone who lives in rural part of the country and lives in the president is trying to paint a picture that we are trying to protect the country from becoming like urban america. and that's the strategy they're going for. basically trying to juice the turn out among the white working class. even though they feel it may offend people who are minorities or live in the cities. they don't necessarily need
votes from people in california or baltimore. because they're focussed on the electoral map and that message works. >> it galvanizes the base. he targets elected officials of color. is that a winning strategy? >> not necessarily. because i think the mistake they're making is they're looking at the white working class in isolation from all of the other complex parts of the elector at. this overt racism will turn off white college graduates that trump carried the last time. or may stimulate additional turn out. among white college graduates. people who didn't like either trump or clinton last time. but may come in to vote trump out in 2020. and about the minority vote, i think they're way off. donald trump got 8% of african
americans in 2016. 13% of african american males. i think there are a lot of african americans in both genders who are turned off by the way the president is approaching this. not to mention the 27% of hispanics that trump gone in 2016. most people don't believe they're happy to hear the words coming out of his mouth or twitter's mouth. >> to that point, the republicans are saying the president attacks are about ideology and patriotism. is that argument working? >> they tried that argument when it was about the squad and the congresswomen. thigh tried to shift the focus and turning back to this is
about socialism vs. freedom. that argument isn't holding water now that he's attacking congressman cummings. he's specifically talking about the african american community. saying black voters need to come to the republican side because the president feels he's doing for more them and brought in the pastors. he's making it about race. and making it hard for the campaign to say it's not. >> he'll say or tweet something that many people find offensive and his apologists come on and turn it into something that can be about policy or say look, the president has a point when the whole point was not what they're saying it is. >> we have seen this from him a lot. he gives supporters an out an opportunity to say it's not. >> they'll take the bait. >> his supporters will have an out and protect him and defend him. and they do it. >> protect themselves as well. >> right. >> being associated with that. >> they're not comfortable with the overtly racist language but want to defend him and protect him. and he gives them an opportunity to do that. >> i want to put up numbers. among independents 57% say they
would definitely not vote for president trump again. he's under water. does the president risk alienating independents especially those who voted for him. >> is the pope argentinaen? yes. there's a real chance he's alienating him. most lean to democrats. remember it's much more significant than that. 54% of americans voted against trump in 2016. what reason has he given that 54% for voting for him? marly on social issues like race. >> larry, thank you both for your time. i appreciate it. the president attacks on
congressman cummings are part of the pattern. we'll dig into his strategy and what it means for 2020. that's next. you make time... when you can. but sometimes life gets in the way, and that stubborn fat just won't go away. coolsculpting takes you further. a non-surgical treatment that targets, freezes, and eliminates treated fat cells, for good. discuss coolsculpting with your doctor. some common side-effects include temporary numbness, discomfort, and swelling. don't imagine results, see them. coolsculpting, take yourself further. iand if we were in a stressfulmy fenvironment. or had a stressful time, we'd say hey let's go smoke a cigarette. interestingly enough, the further i got away from the military, i'd- i started noticing. you know, being in corporate environments and it not being as prevalent, being around smokers. so i would tend to be- become the odd man out. i'm kinda the only one taking a break- five times a day. yeah i'll never forget it. the first time i actually tried juul i was surprised at how similar it was to a cigarette.
president trump blistering attacks on the major african american district represented by cummings revealing a strategy which appears to mirror his 2016 play book. i want to bring in now my panel. good to have you all here. in detroit. thank you for joining us. president trump called you a stone cold thief. a thief and said i presided over the most dangerous city in america. >> you have been on the same side as cummings. what's the best way to respond? >> the truth is i apologize in advance for my exhaustion on the issue. this president has decided very clearly where he is. he decided electorally,
strategically to turn us against each other. he's running a race war of a campaign. i think most frustrating to me as a former mayor of a city, when you're the may your of a city. this happened under the obama administration. they called all of us in. we worked together to address issues of infrastructure and health and homelessness in the communities. issues of insure and health. this president is actively working to divide people at the level that in my opinion is the most pure when it comes to political system. he's corrupting that. and i really do fear for what this next election may foretell. if we don't do the right thing and get rid of him. >> what does that mean? >> what it says about us. there's not a person in the country who right now can deny what it means if you were to go
out and vote for trump. it isn't the stock market or healthcare. he's hardly mentioning that. everyone though it could be to his favor. what he is running toward is a war of race. of urban vs. suburban vs. rural. we're better than that. >> joe you tweeted this. it's strong. you say, anyone who supports a racist or a racist strategy is a racist themselves. 2020 is a moment of reckoning for america. vote for donald trump, and you are a racist. don't hide it like a coward. wear that badge proudly. and see how it feels. >> what's been the reaction? >> i have heard from every trump supporters in the last 24 hours. here's the point i was trying to
make. in 2016, he spoke in dog whistles. they're actively going out and telling people we're going to run on race. we're running and trying to generate enough support among what we believe are racists in the country. that the will take us over the finish line. your ability to say no, i disagree is gone. if you're going into the voting booth and pull the lever for trump. he's cynically trying to turn this country back to the days of george wallace and before. that in my view makes you complicit and racist. >> i want you to weigh in. the president called his racist attacks on congresswomen of color a winning strategy. he's seeing this division as a strategy. go on. talk about that. >> that's right.
he sees it as way to bind his supporters to one another. and bind them together emotionally. make them think about identity. white identity. and identity -- >> identity politics. >> we have been talks about this for a while. there's trepidation in 2016. it was coated to some people. you can say it was a fear of economic displacement or left behind. it really had this over lay, under lay subtext of being left behind. because of the demographic changes in america. on one hand it has binding his people together and these are white americans. it when they talk to black voters and focus groups about this, what they see from black voters isn't energizing when they mention the president's racism. it's apathy. there is a fear among democratic strategists particularly the surge voters. african-americans younger voters. that it kind of just makes them
disengage in the property. with know it. and the focus comes to democrats. what will they do for african americans. >> his presidency has been about governing by minority. approval is around 40%. does he need to worry about expanding his base? weigh in on all of this. >> i think first of all has any leader ever had a lower opinion of their supporters? right? he obviously has the lowest opinion of his supporters. he's saying i have a strategy based on the belief you're a racist. i don't know why they're not offended. if they're not racist they should be offended by the fact he's doing this. conservative standards he's been a successful president. he has quite a few things he could be running on. for example the supreme court, which was the number one issue for most of the voters, who voted for him. he has been able to do a lot of things that make them happy.
>> that gives him that much cover? >> and the economy doing well. the feeling he's standing up for the sense among christians. he stand up for them. they say they love about him. why does he have to do this strategy with them? >> that's a good question. you have discussed with me personally and on this net work about this sort of epiphany or -- not metamorphosis. a blind spot. there was an awakening for you. >> i said things and i for a week and a half was getting death threats and trying to have a conversation. as a white person saying we have to be realistic about the fact we have blind spots that we benefit from a system that is racist. we need to have a conversation
about that. that's not a conversation trump supporters were interested in having. >> interesting. >> to the point of the fact president has a lot of other issues if he wanted to quite frankly raise them for supporters. they would be happy with the supreme court. they would be happy with the judgeships the federal level. his tax breaks to the wealthy 1%. why isn't he going after that? i agree there's something really sinister about this approach which if i'm a trump supporter, i have to be honest. i would be insulted with the fact he has resolved me to be is basically in line with him. as race relations and racism in the country. >> i have a short time. do you see a similarly between intolerance and nixon southern strategy?
>> there's been a reversal. a famous quote where he talks about what we learned in 68 with wallace and nixon. and 72. was we have offended too many voters by using the "n" word. now we just don't use it. we speak in code. what trump has done is reversed it. he's doing everything but using the n word. and the code thrown out. it's all now explicit race baiting. again, i don't think he has that great of record to run on. that's an argument for another night. it is hard to see how the people in the house he expand the base enough to get. >> maybe he doesn't need to. that's the thing. there could be enough of the voters in michigan and wisconsin and pennsylvania. that look either see racism as a good thing. sort of the racially divisive language or over look it and say the stock market is doing well.
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candidate to lead this nation especially, especially in light of the person we have in the white house. he has been consistent, a strong advocate for what is just, right and good p for all of his life. it's simple for him. be himself. >> the polls go up and down. >> they do. >> i wonder if you guys are looking at the polls the way we do. >> no, because we're doing the work. >> the senator is down 2 points to 11%, elizabeth warren is up to 15% according to quinnipiac today. why do you think that is? what do you think of it? >> the polls go up and down, they're a snapshot in time. the real poll that we are most concerned about is the twhaone happens on election day during the primary psych until 2020. when your candidate is up in the polls, the polls are fantastic. and when they're not doing so well, you discount those. >> really? i never heard that from a strategist.
>> i'm just telling the truth. >> that is what happens? thank you for being honest about that. but you know the criticism that's happening now, especially at the center of the party, that the party is moving too far to the left. how will the senator address that? >> the way he always has. you know him. we can control the tape, ten years, 20 years, 30 years, 40 years, the senator has been consistent about a rigged system, a rigged economy that hurts the working poor barely middle class in the middle of the country. he won't change in his efforts to stand up for the citizens of this country. just period. >> let's talk about some more issues. over a dozen of the candidates now support some version of medicare for all. do you think health care is going to be a definitive issue in this campaign? >> i do. and as we travel the country, we hear that, jobs and health care. the senator and i met with some brothers from the teamsters union. and even though you have some candidates say, well, the union workers work hard for their health care.
some of that health care is not really covering the needs. these particular members in the teamsters believe in a medicare for all system. it's a system not attached to a job. it is a system where the average family will save money and they don't have to have their doctor haggle with whether they can get the prescriptions they need or a procedure they need. the way it is now, an insurance company gets to tell a doctor what you can get or not get, because if it cuts into their profits, they don't care whether you live or die. >> let's talk news of the day. president trump has dragged senator sanders in the runningings. how does your campaign respond to the comments the president made about congressman cummings? >> he is lying about who he is. it is more than unfortunate, instead of trying to solve the problems of this country, the president the just pours the gasoline and lights a match and
watches everything burn. senator sanders was protesting against segregation and discrimination. this man lied to the working people of this country and said i'm going to cut your taxes, i'm going to save your health care, you're going to have the best health care in the country. he tried to cut it. >> i have to get to this, senator sanders sat down with hip-hop superstar cardi b. tonight. here is what she said on instagram that he shared his plans on how to change the country. what did they talk about? >> you know, i can't -- we can't tell all secrets. we have to leave something spicy. it is really good to have cardi b stand up for senator sanders and to support him. >> does this show his support, do you think, among younger voters and especially younger -- >> you know, in 2016 he won 5 million more votes than both secretary clinton and president trump. the senator got some cool, and
cardi b and sister mike, don't leave e me out. my generation is cool too. >> i have to get some glasses advice from you, every time i see you you have great glasses on. i'll see you tomorrow night. >> i look forward to it. we'll be right back. ♪ let's go! ♪ (door bell rings) it's ohey. this is amazing. with moderate to severe ulcerative colitis, are you okay? even when i was there, i never knew when my symptoms would keep us apart. so i talked to my doctor about humira.
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