tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC September 16, 2015 4:00pm-5:01pm PDT
and win. >> republican candidates for president will take the stage a short time from now. we will be watching. thanks for watching this hour. harl ball starts now and you can catch a special post debate two hour edition here on msnbc. round two. let's play "hardball"." good evening. out at the reagan presidential library in simi valley, california. the first republican presidential debate was i think trump versus kelly as in megyn kelly with the front runner
getting sharpest challenge from the moderator. it made tv ratings history. tonight get ready for one hell of a sequel. the first round battle i believe should feature trump versus moderator in this case tapper on the record saying he wants to get the candidates fighting with each other. i expect trump to make him eat those words. 11 republican presidential candidates will take the stage less than an hour from now. center stage so far immovable object himself, donald trump. he cemented front runner status and declared war on the entire field. the attack is on his back tonight. next to trump is the guy with the hot hand, dr. ben carson. the retired neurosurgeon surged into a strong second place. then carly fiorina, the only woman in the republican race rallied into primetime. trump has gone after her looks,
believe it or not. get ready for fireworks because she has promised a show tonight. and by the way i think she is in an excellent position to make tomorrow's headlines. expect to see fiorina in the words of the head lines tomorrow morning. that's just the start tonight. for the rest things are looking desperate. republicans are in no mood for establishment candidates meaning office holders line rand paul, mike huckabee, marco rubio, ted cruz, jeb bush, scott walker, john kasich and chris christie with in hostile territory with voters. their support is drying up in the polls. if these elected types flunk the test tonight it could mean a one way ticket to the grave yard which rick perry just stumbled in. we have been watching the under card debate featuring four candidates whose campaigns are on life support. rick santorum, bobby jindal and
lindsey graham. we will have highlights later in the show. we begin with the primetime show down coming up soon. i am joining by katie turr and with us from new york is republican strategist steve schmidt. i want you to start with this. give me your tout. i think a fight between trump and tapper because tapper made the mistake i believe of giving away his plans. here is tapper saying what his goal is tonight. >> what the team and i have been doing is trying to craft questions that in most cases pit candidates against the other. they are going to want to be talking to the camera and want to get out their talking points. i'm going to try, attempt to get them to address each other and actually debate. >> trump himself is gearing up
by going after cnn. he tweeted can you believe cnn is milking it for almost three hours. too long, too many people on the stage. is this going to be another battle between trump and the moderator? >> i think it is. >> everything that donald trump does in this race is designed to convey strength. his motto, his slogan in the campaign, make america great again, it speaks very deeply to the republican electorate that believes that barack obama has succeeded in his mission of transformation and that he has wrecked the country. and the proof points of conservatism no longer are issues. and what trump is doing when he gets in a fight with roger or megyn kelly or doubles down and doesn't back down after his comments on illegal immigration he is saying to a republican electorate that has complete contempt for elected political class of the country saying that
i won't bow down. i can't be bought off. and that message of strength you'll see play out tonight in exchanges when he counter punches to other candidates who come at him. it is always a ready applause line in a republican debate to go after the debate moderator or the media. he has been spectacularly successful of that so far in this campaign. >> i think you were the first one to go to war with him. he does seem to like to make noise by going after the person with the mic in their hand. >> if he doesn't like the question he will go after the person who asked the question rather than answering the question or being diplomatic. he will claim the person asking it has an agenda and isn't fair. >> tapper already told him his agenda is to get fishing out there. >> i wouldn't be surprised. they are looking for ratings, as well. ratings will come if they start fighting with each other. donald trump brings ratings. it will be interesting to see him attack the other candidates.
>> let's talk about fiorina. i think trump put her in the on deck circle to use a baseball term. he said i don't like your looks which is not a civilized thing to say. he doesn't care about the establishment. it has given her a platform. >> and to her great credit she has made the most of it and the best of it. >> she is in the team now. >> i think of all 17 candidates she has been the one who has out performed everybody's expectations and has made substantive gains in this effort. i think with real voters a poll out tonight has her third in new hampshire. >> so he tried to fire her in apprentice style and he hired her. >> that is effectively what it is. tonight my eye is on her. i think she stands to gain the most and make the biggest move
on trump not by going after him but by showing through her answers how ridiculous his answers are. >> how does she do that? >> for example, on immigration she will bring the compassion. she will speak to the issue in a way that shows we can build a wall but what about the people? >> the ones that fly here. >> that's true, too. it's not about the direct attack that you saw with rand paul and chris christie and others. it's like the lion going after the prey. one-on-one the lion is going to win. >> chuck todd joining us. how do you see this tonight? we are ahead of the game. i predict a fight with the moderator and then i think the spot light and headlines are going to be on fiorina. your thoughts? >> i think the way jake is going to set this up is going to be where the candidates go after each other. i don't expect the moderators to be sort of an equal sort of
extra candidate on stage the way they were in the fox debate. part of that is because first debates candidates are usually tentative in going after each other. this debate look at ruberubio, walker, christie. these guys, rand paul, they all thought they were top candidates by now. there is a september 30 fundraising deadline. i think you will see desperation and guys trying to go after trump and jeb in particular. i think those are the guys getting the most incoming. trump for obvious reasons but jeb because he is the stand in for all things anti-establishment. don't like washington and don't like bush. i'm with you on fiorina. i think by showing up she is already in the money. i think by showing up she is in the money and will get the great exchange with trump when the moderators set up the whole rolling stone dispargeing
comment. she can't win that moment then she doesn't belong on that stage. i think she will win that moment. >> carly fiorina is the only woman on the republican stage tonight grabbing headlines for dealing with trump after he made fun of her face. here is how she responded. >> ladies, look at this face. this is the face of a 61-year-old woman. i am proud of every year and every wrinkle. >> i don't know about this, but it seems to me that all these guys are going to come in with sunday punch shined up with consultants. it will be a big birthday cake and trump will put their face right in it. i tell you they are not original people. they don't think on their feet. he does. i think he will cream them when they come with their big punch. your thoughts? >> i agree.
i think the more people who attack him the better it is for him. i think the worse thing for him is if one person went after him and scored significant body blows and other people address the issue. i think there is an air of desperation. walker has to be desperate. chris christie has to look for a hail mary. i think there will be a lot going after him. the more they go after him the more it makes the disenchanted voter say they are going after him. >> he is going to look like travel. nearly every republican candidate out there is itching for a piece of trump tonight. let's watch them. >> donald trump is an entertainer. i am a leader. i think mr. trump will be hearing quite a lot from me. >> when he attacks me personally or disparages my family i'm going to fight back. i hope you would too. >> he is a narcissist.
the only thing he believes in is himself. this is a carnival act. >> you want ratings. christie is ratings. total ratings. >> so much fun. >> big, very big. how is that? is that good? >> this is not a game show. it's not a production. it is deciding the most important political office in the world. i don't believe donald trump will be our nominee. >> we make sure everybody knows donald trump you are a fake. >> you think you are their target? >> that's what everybody says. >> let me get back to katie. you watch this guy. does he have a lot of moves or one move? it's basically stand up comedy, put down artist. putting people down. that's funny. putting down the way things are in the country, pretty predictable. is he capable of modulating his act snz. >> it is unclear. it seems he is starting to
change up slightly. he is becoming a little more controlled. his speech is the same pretty much every time he gives it except for a few zingers. he is maybe not trying to make unnecessary headlines. he is preparing for this debate. he is starting to treat this like a real campaign. >> is he getting homework? >> i said are you worried about the hewitt interview and this being a foreign policy debate? i asked if they knew the difference between hamas and hezbollah? >> who is the prime minister of england? >> i think if they do that tonight it will blow up in cnn space. i think the audience will boo. >> isn't there a minimal amount of information we expect a
president to have? >> a good example was that hewitt when he was talking about the kurds and the fact that if you just let that go it would have been self-evident. if they do that approach it works. >> do candidates worry about the simple information question that shows they don't read the newspaper? are they afraid of that? >> candidates are always nervous being exposed as lacking in one of the qualities that voters look to in deciding for a president. the point is that donald trump has shown so far that he is immune to this. the proof point to donald trump is winning every day. he says i will make america great again. i will go into the room with putin or the chinese or mexican leaders and win. i am going to get the deal and fight for america and fight for the american people and the proof points are the strength that he shows out on the campaign trail every day. we talk about this earlier. i think we are at an inflection
moment in the republican party where issues are separating from conservatism. conservatism is an expression. the proof point is the hotness of the rhetoric, the expression of contempt towards the political establishment of the country. we will see playing out on the stage attacks at donald trump. you supported nancy pelosi with a check or hillary clinton and supported this tax increase or that. i don't think it matters anymore. what trump does is he conveys strength and that conveyance of strength is the proof point to the message which is he can make the country great again. he is saying something that republican voters believe that none of the rest of the candidates have the guts to say which is the country isn't great anymore. it's a profound statement and one that is resonating with republican voters. >> sounds like trump can't be outdone in trumpism.
chuck todd last thought. >> i think steve brings up a good point. i think it is a huge mistake if these guys go after trump on ideology. the republican party is split now. its rank and file, there is a big large working class vote. they all used to be democrats. trying to attack trump as being an ex-democrat and steve is right, this is not about issues. this is about a style and persona. it's why john boehner is in so much trouble as speaker of the house. it's not an issue. it's his persona and style. he doesn't show strength. >> in fact, we are sitting here in the library dedicated to a franklin roosevelt liberal democrat judged too liberal to be a nominee back in the early
'50s. thank you. coming up it's make or break time for some of those second tier candidates. i'm being nice. who thought they would be first tier. what about the desperadoes. how will they shape this race up? after the debate 11:00 eastern tonight join me at the reagan library for a special two hour post game edition of "hardball" right from this room called the spin room. everything here in this room from these chairs tonight. this is "hardball" place for politics live from the reagan library. thank you for having us here tonight.
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misswill turn anan asphalt parking lot into a new neighborhood for san franciscans. a vote for "yes" on "d" is definitely a vote for more parks and open space. a vote on proposition "d" is a vote for jobs. campos: no one is being displaced. it's 40% affordable units near the waterfront for regular people. this is just a win-win for our city. i'm behind it 100%. voting yes on "d" is so helpful to so many families in our city. welcome back to "hardball" live from the reagan library for tonight's big republican debate.
for many candidates not named trump this is a do or die moment. trump and dr. ben carson claim half. people like bush are in single digits. in new hampshire the latest wbur poll trump in the lead followed by dr. carson. fiorina a few points back. jeb and john kasich tied for fourth. that means there are going to be a lot of candidates on stage tonight in desperate need of a win. what is their strategy from seizing the spot light. robert costas for the washington post and in d.c. former republican from oklahoma surrogate for rand paul. how is rand paul going to get into the fight tonight so that he is somewhere in the lead in
the coverage tomorrow? >> well, chris, i think all the polling data, talk to me about or have me on the show about ten days out from the iowa caucuses and i can tell you who is going to win. i think right now the numbers are going to be all over the board. we saw this in 2012. i was involved with the gingrich campaign. we saw five or six different leaders in iowa. we saw newt at 34%. he ended up with 13%. two weeks out rick santorum had 4% or 5% and ended up winning the thing. i think you will see some of these candidates probably continue to drop out as you saw rick perry do. it wouldn't surprise me if we still had about ten candidates going into iowa into the caucus. it is going to be very interesting. these numbers aren't moving me and i don't think they are moving senator paul. >> let me ask the same question. your candidate huckabee numbers
as low as bush. they don't like anybody it seems has had a job in government. it's endemic. >> congressman is right. this time in 2012 rick perry was leading the polls. >> why are you debating? >> it is important. >> is this pregaming for a party? is this preseason for a football season? you are saying it doesn't matter? >> every debate and every opportunity to meet -- >> why if you are watching debates they are making these judgments? >> it's still in the early process. >> what judgments are they making? >> right now they are window shopping and comparing and contrasting. >> the pattern is they don't like anybody who has had an office. they like people like fooiorina catching up. they have never been elected to anything. isn't that a pattern? >> right now people at the top of the polls are outside of government. when we start peeling back
layers and asking candidates for specifics on where they stand on the issues people want to see someone who has led something before in terms of executive experience. >> that's not what they are doing. they are picking people they can't blame for something. they don't hold -- they hold the people in office responsible. ronald reagan once said i will admit i'm irresponsible when they admit they are responsible. >> reagan ran as an outsider. he was a governor. >> ex-democrat, too. >> people are brushing off trump. i think tonight it is early and i understand all of these arguments about -- >> what else are you going to say when you are behind? it doesn't matter. >> every campaign you talk to you need a moment tonight. you need a breakout moment. >> huckabee going to have a breakout moment? >> in these debates you are not going to win campaign in a debate but you can lose one. we have seen --
>> governor walker is losing. he is going from being a real contender to a two. >> the opportunity to communicate and show your contrast by building organization. >> walker has been canceling events around the country trying to focus in iowa. i think tonight walker is speaking directly to those people in the suburbs of des moines saying i am evangelical and midwestern. >> do you throw the bomb tonight? you have to go to the end zone. i have one or two shots with the announcer i'm going to make my touchdown. do you do that or risk it and throw three yards in the cloud of dust? >> i don't think you try to throw the bomb. i think you probably look to get some 20, 25 yard gains. most football games you are going to have a whole lot more six yard gains than 60 yard gains. that's the reality of it.
i think in politics in a presidential election when you are talking about five months away from the iowa caucus there is still a lot of run way out there. so i think being the race isn't going to be given to the swift or strong but to those who will endure. you have to make sure you are organized. i think senator paul is well organized in iowa and in new hampshire. i think organization, continuing to stay the course, talking to people, that's the thing that will win. at the end of the day i have nothing against donald trump but i believe that donald trump when you look he is at 27% and 23% i think the two polls that you showed. chris, there is 7 out of 10 people saying he is not our choice. so when you see this thing dwindle down i think it's more realistic to say let's see what the numbers will be two month said from now and then the sound
will mean something at that time. >> with all respect you can't have this wait strategy forever campaign. if you are on the bubble. if you are chris christie and scott walker at 1% and you think you are going to weigh in on the sidelines you might not make the next debate. >> that's fine if they want to do that. all i'm saying is throwing the bomb on every play isn't going to win the game for you. i think you need a steady performance. you don't need to be trying to throw the bomb every play. >> i agree. i think the chief defender will be donald trump jumping up so high in the air he will knock the ball right down again. his greatest strength will be defense. i think he will be ready for it because he has a magical ability to think. most of the other candidates can't do that. last thought to you.
>> let me ask you something. i don't think there is anybody on this panel that would say that somebody that has said what they have said about what he said about women, the brush that he has painted with concerning hispanics, when you use your personality to be rude and crude with people and say that's just the way i am what happens when he says that about the jewish community, about the black community and poor white people and on and on and on? i met donald trump a couple of times. i don't say this as a republican, i say it out of civility to say that is that what we want in the white house? and i just have to think that that's not where republicans are. i think it will do irreparable damage to the republican party if that's who we select. >> i completely agree with you. >> republicans are upset about
what happened in washington over the last ten years but is that the choice that we make? i'm not so sure it is. >> i think you are right across the board. the problem is your timing. if the republican party was going to stand up for decency in american politics they could have done it four or five years ago when donald trump was out there saying the president of the united states was an illegal immigrant. he said it over and over and over again. it was racist, disgusting and everybody let it go by including boehner, speaker of the house. he never raised objection to it so now you have it coming home to roost. you let him get away with it and now he is getting away with it big time. >> no question. >> should have stood up for it when it mattered. poisonous talk you should have talked up and didn't do it. now you are paying for it with a guy who has gotten out of hand. >> when we were using -- when the personality was being used
to diss the democrats and the president fox news and others establishment thought it was cute. now that he has turned on republicans and fox news we don't think it is so cute. i didn't think it was cute when he was doing it to the president. you can disagree without just flat out being nasty. at the same time we have seen it on the democrats side, as well. it's no more right for the democrats to do it than it is for the republicans to do it. >> trump has changed his tempo. >> let's move on. good work there. thanks for coming on for rand paul and thank you for coming on for governor huckabee. thank you for coming on for the truth. just kidding. up next she beat carly fiorina in san francisco, los angeles, everywhere for the united states senate. senator barbara boxer joining us to discuss her former opponent. plus whether hillary clinton
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at ally bank no branches equalsit's a fact.. kind of like mute buttons equal danger. ...that sound good? not being on this phone call sounds good. it's not muted. was that you jason? it was geoffrey! it was jason. it could've been brenda. you are looking at can you spot the difference? no? you can't see that? alright, let's take a look. the one on the right just used 1% less fuel than the one on the left. now, to an airline, a 1% difference could save enough fuel to power hundreds of flights around the world. hey, look at that. pyramids. so you see, two things that are exactly the same
have never been more different. ge software. get connected. get insights. get optimized. my focus is on a national energy policy because that is why -- >> do you support it? >> i have not taken a position on it yet. >> if you can't take a stand on prop 23 i don't know what you will take a stand on. if my opponent gets there california is done for in terms of its lead on clean energy. >> welcome back to "hardball" live from the reagan library for tonight's republican debate right here. that was carly fiorina debating barbara boxer of california during their hard fought 2010
u.s. contest. senator boxer joins me right now. i'm a big fan of yours. tell me what you think about tonight. you beat her and here she is going for president. >> everybody has a right to follow their dreams but nobody has a right to win without proving that they really care about people. and the reason i was able to beat her by really a landslide in a year that was terrible for democrats was because of her record. she had laid off tens of thousands of workers. she pocketed millions of dollars in a golden parachute, was fired from hewlett-packard. she had been fired before that. the people who she stepped on cut commercials for me, some were republicans, some were democrats and some were independents and said they were so mistreated. she actually had them training their replacements, people coming from abroad. so it was a pretty awful record that she had. plus what is incredible is when
she was the ceo of hewlett-packard they were selling printers to iran and there was an executive order that said no. and the s.e.c. caught them. she has so many problems. i say if the republicans choose her we will walk into the presidency. really, we will. >> isn't it ironic she is able to run as a feminist, someone who was mishandled and abused by a male, trump and the way he talked about her appearance. now she can come with a lot of support to stand up for her integrity and her gender, if you will. seems like that. >> that is fine. there is nothing wrong with carly fiorina's face. that is so off base i can't go there. she should have realized that when she attacked me because my hair style was quote so yesterday.
it is sort of crazy that she had attacked me on my hair. it is true i have many bad hair days. it is true. >> i always thought you looked pretty well put together for me. >> thank you. >> let me ask you about the gender fight. hillary clinton is a pro. i never met anybody that had so many people made up their minds. what do you think? do you think this is going to be a campaign where she can make it about issues, the economy, foreign policy? can she get out of the discussion of the personal who do you like today kind of thing? >> the hillary situation i am so for her. i think she is by far the most qualified. she has the temperment and toughness. i was right when i said on day one that as soon as she announced they would be going after her 24/7. you had more than a dozen of these republican candidates going against her.
you have the republican house going against her. and the media wants to knock her down because they want a race. and she has proven that she can stay tough through all of this. this e-mail thing is so much a bologna sandwich. >> do you think the "new york times" is out to get her? >> i don't know. let me tell you. i don't know one senator, not one, i don't know of any who doesn't send work e-mails on their personal e-mail address. it is done all the time. what hillary did was okay at the time. she got approval to do it. she used a private server which i would argue probably turns out to be safer than some of the government servers which has been hacked. so this thing is nothing but it's been 24/7. she is proving that she can take the heat. if you look at her right now still leading by a lot compared
to jeb bush who has been knocked to the bottom you see the reservoir of faith in hillary. once this is behind her i am so excited but it has to get behind her. she said she would have done it differently. i think when people sit down and say i don't like the way she did her e-mails that is a bad thing but i love the way she fights for our families and for our children and for foreign policy that makes us safe. i think that we'll get past this. i really do. >> you're proven you know what you are talking about. barbara boxer of california, great to be out here. thank you for coming on. up next what happened earlier tonight during the happy hour debate, the second string. it got a little hot. you are watching "hardball," the place for politics live from the reagan library and the republican debate coming up. (vo) what does the world run on?
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welcome back to "hardball" from the reagan library for the big day tonight on the republican side the candidates who didn't qualify for the main event which is coming up faced off on a happy hour debate. according to cnn all four candidates, rick santorum, bobby jindal are below 1% in the average of national polls all below 1%. jindal, the louisiana governor tried to hardest to go after donald trump calling him a madman who must be stopped. and former new york governor george pataki tweeted he would
not vote for donald trump if he becomes the nominee said trump is unfit for the presidency. i am joined by casie hunt and former rnc chair michael steel, andrea mitchell. i just have to tell you the first thing i liked is the way -- who was it who brought -- tapper did. you said you were going to back anybody who won and now you say you won't back the front runner. pataki did not give an answer. >> i think that shows you how much -- >> don't these guys think ahead? don't you know if you swear you will back whoever wins except that guy. >> i'm not sure anybody will throw the hand raising back at them. >> i just did. >> you are the only one. >> don't they think ahead? >> you would think they would. that is how they get caught in
the moment and the words come back to trap them. if you will stake out the position hold the ground and stay true to it. you can't hold the question. >> you thought the guy made the strongest impression on you was lindsey graham of south carolina. >> senator graham brought a little happy to the happy hour debate. the lindsey graham we saw on fox news was sower. lindsey graham was one cracking jokes, loose. he has been in the mix on almost every exchange that we have seen. even the other candidates on the stage have turned to him and looked to him and he stood up on immigration. he said hispanics are americans. >> he has the guts in this crowd to do that. >> he stood his ground that he staked out and in that venue he looked at the camera and said i'm not backing down from that point. this is what we believe. this is where we should go. >> i think the best thing lindsay said in terms of government making it work as we
believe in was he said to rick santorum you had an immigration bill. how many democrats supported it. how are you going to knock something is nobody is for it. lindsay challenged him i thought effectively. i thought he was being honest. your thoughts. >> i agree that lindsey graham really stood out and tried to establish as commander in chief and we know in his background as jag officer. he stood his ground and laid out the case on immigration and did it in a way that i believe just practically speaking if not morally republicans have to do and have not. also interesting that george pataki tangled with santorum on the rule of law that santorum didn't seem to know or that bobby jindal didn't seem to know that justice kennedy was a reagan nominee and appointee to the supreme court clearly an
error that jake tapper corrected him on. >> you're a good reporter. can you remember these republicans complaining when we had a 5-4 decision in bush versus gore in 2000? weren't too many heads shaking we can't have that in this country. these guys change their mind about the supreme court on the last decision. what did you make of lindsey graham talking about his predecessor having four kids after 67 and that was at least kicking in and helping social security. your thoughts. >> that was one of his good lines during the immigration section of the debate which i thought was a very good exchange and lindsey graham saying for demographic reasons going forward we need immigration. we need young workers coming in to support those baby boomers who are about to retire. >> let's watch that. >> i thought that was very good.
i thought the other person who i thought had a good moment and had bad moments, too. i thought rick santorum had a good moment when the discussion turned to the minimum wage. he supports an increase in the minimum wage and other candidates don't. he had a back and forth with lindsey graham on that. at one point rick santorum said 90% of workers are wage earners. how are we going to win if 90% of americans think we don't care about them? >> well said. they have to stop acting like everybody is an entrepreneur building something in their basement. not everybody is doing it. tonight bobby jindal asked whether he was breaking ronald reagan's famous 11th commandment. >> i would tell fellow republicans let's stop treating donald trump like a republican. if he were really a conservative and 30 points ahead i would
endorse him. he is not a liberal. he is not a democrat, not an independent. he believes in donald trump. >> so apparently do a lot of republicans because they keep voting for him in the polls. former new york governor george pataki asked if he has reneged on pledges to support the ultimate nominee. here is his non-response. >> i have not broken the pledge because donald trump is not going to be the republican nominee, period, flatout, i will vote for the republican -- >> you said on twitter that you would not support donald trump. if he is the nominee will you support him? >> he is not going to be the nominee. let me say one word. this is an important election with an enormous number of challenges facing the american people and the first four questions are about donald trump. >> would you really vote for hillary clinton over donald trump if he is the nominee? >> i will vote for the republican nominee. let me say this flatout.
donald trump is unfit to be president of the united states or the republican party's nominee. >> that was gubernatorial response to a press question. all governors do that. they don't answer the question. they don't have to. capital press corps is obedient. we have more with our round table in just a minute. hey babe, last one home cooks? ♪ ♪
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we just need to make sure she has what she needs. welcome to windows 10. the future starts now for all of us. >> we're back from the reagan library right now with michael steele. we've got lindsey graham coming over here to me right now. ca kasie hunt. from washington i have andrea mitchell. lindsey graham has set up behind us here. who's going to make the headlines to want? >> i think senator graham made them in the small debate. in the big debate i'll go with carly fiorina. >> carly tomorrow, yes. >> same question, who will make the headline tonight andrea? >> i think it was lindsey graham in the under card and i think it will be carly fiorina.
>> i think we agree on this. gene, are you with the group on this? i think it's probably true. >> i'm with lindsey graham in the first debate. second debate, let me go a different way, maybe ben carson. will let's see how he performs. >> do you think it will be offense or defense for him? >> it might surprise us band a little offense. it will be offense. but he has something to show to people. he's number if light now in all of the polls. i think there will be a lot of attention on him and people listening to see how he answers national security questions. >> i think it's a big test for him. >> if jake tapper gets him into a mano-a-mano thing, that will be the fight to watch. that picture of the two of them. by the way, they're standing next to each other which can make it great. thank you, kasie hunt, michael steele, andrea mitchell and eugene robinson back in washington. back with more "hardball" from the reagan library right after this. my constipation and belly pain
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let me finish tonight with a question, how long donald trump can keep this up. isn't that the drama? when will his fans stop laughing, his big crowds fail to show? is there a limit to how many times he can go out there on the stage, call into a tv show, attack the way things are in the country, trash his rivals and still get ratings? it is, oddly enough, the reality tv show trump is producing
before our very eyes. we tune into him with the fascination of seeing how long he can do what he's doing. trump ice presidential campaign isn't his first enterprise in this distinctive use of television. look at the long-running success of "the apprentice," it's based on the same viewer demand throughout in 2016 politicking. people like to see someone under pressure. and trump is the long-time master of this game. for years he sat stone faced, the hard-nosed business tycoon deciding the fates of those sitting in that quiet room before him. then came the verdict -- you're fired. well, the contestant hated it but the audience at home loved it and today he's doing the same to his presidential rivals with the added bonus of being a consistent himself. but reality tv holds the prospect of surprise and thises plains trumps fight with megyn kelly during and after this season's first republican debate. the fox moderator did to him what he'd done to others -- casting trump in the role of hopeful amen thys, taking for herself the stern role of
interrogator and judge. she won, he lost. trump has in recent weeks recasted himself into a new role -- executioner. instead of watching him for a verdict, we watch to see how he will slam the next opponent. we wait to see which rival he will fire. all the the way, he's been raising the heat level in this on air contest. like that producers of the old quiz show, he wants to see his rivals sweat. trump is making the bet that people will, a, like the image he projects, and, b, believe that the performer they see on the tv screen is actually who he is e. we'll know he's failed when we start to see him sweat. and that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. "all in with chris hayes" starts right now. tonight on "all in." >> i showed to her and she said "is that a bomb?" >> a 14-year-old becomes a global cause celeb after he was