if it's monday, it's the first 2016 democratic presidential debate, now just 24 hours away. but it's the guy sitting 2400 miles away who is still making up his mind and making some democrats nervous. this is mtp daily and it starts right now. good evening, i'm steve kornacki in for chuck todd it is columbus day across the country but there's no holiday break out there on the campaign trail. tonight, it is debate prep eight and a half years in the making, a look at what hillary clinton's best and worst moments on the 2008 debate stage can tell us about tomorrow night's fight in las vegas. back in washington meanwhile, all quiet on capitol hill, but paul ryan is still getting an earful about taking the speakers a job.
also tonight, chuck talks to former "meet the press" moderator marvin cal be about russia's resurgence and whether we are on the brink of a new cold war. all that coming up, first, hit the 2016 campaign trail in the press box. casey hunt is in las vegas with the latest on the debate prep. kristen welker is in delaware outside the vice president's house. nbc's katy tur is in new hampshire, partisans on all sides try to talk to the middle today and nbc campaign embed vaughan hilliard is in iowa following ted cruz. let's start in las vegas where prep railings is at full throttle now for that first democratic primary debate tomorrow night. hillary clinton will be standing at the center podium, flanked by four other candidates, bernie sanders and jim web to the left of her, martin o'malley and lincoln chafee to the right. cnn released new numbers for south carolina today where clinton holds 49% of the support. on the democratic side, joe biden, still thinking about
running, has half of those through bernie sanders back in third place at 18%. in nevada, where the candidates are going to be debating tomorrow night, clinton has more support, but a notably smaller margin between her and sanders. for more, we go to casey hunt in cincy. so, casey, i'm curious about the strategy of all of these candidates tomorrow night. is there a sense if any of them, specifically bernie sanders, but maybe one of the others is ready to really go after hillary clinton and if hillary clinton is ready to punch back if that happens? >> reporter: steve, you might in some ways compare this to the early republican debates back in 2012 when you had people arrayed around mitt romney. some ways, that is a similar situation here with hillary and the position of strength that she is. and i think the question is if somebody does decide to punch at her, whether they really follow through. and i think that maybe the question in particular for martin o'malley, who is somebody that has been campaigning hard but still remain far back in the polls. i think for bernie sanders, the sense that i'm getting from
people that i was talking to, many whom on the plane out here, you know how the airplanes fill up with pundits, activists, all kinds of people now invaded this wynn hotel in las vegas and are all mixing, ming ling, talking about this, i think he still has an opportunity to introduce himself to the american people, where for hillary clinton, this is obviously more of a tight rope. the one thing i will say though, steve, as far as strategy goes, while there's obviously a lot going on here in las vegas, the talk of the town here that washington and other place around the country have brought to investigate gas all about joe biden and what is he going to do at this point? >> i'm curious, too, just in terms of the clinton people, what you're hearing from clinton, how they are feeling going into this debate. she had, i guess, a mixed record in 2008. she stumbled on this question famously about driver licenses for the undocumented back in late 2007. how do they feel about her as a debater heading into tomorrow night? >> i think the feeling she is in a strong position, somebody who
is a life long preparer, goes into these things very well, read in, she is going to be somebody who can hold her own on any policy issue with any of these other candidates. i think the question you raised about a potentially unpredictable moment is a real one. in many ways, hillary clinton has been strongest on the debate stage when she or even in the public eye when she has been under attack and i think the question here is does she come into this as somebody who is under the gun, who is weathering these e-mail scandals and actually rise up to that occasion and have one of those more emotional moments or see the front runner who occasionally comes off a little bit chillier, steve? >> thanks, kasie in las vegas. turn now to the first state where vice president joe biden is possibly close to reaching a decision. biden's indecision is not helping his cause, fund raising efforts continue to trickle n he will have an uphill bat physical he decides to get in the race for president. millions of dollars have flooded into the race, biden has not
been able to raise one crept since he hasn't officially thrown his hat into the race, of course. failing to meet crucial deadlines coming up in november would leave him off the ballot in as many as four primary states. let's go to nbc's kristen welker who is live for us in greenville, delaware. so kristen, haefrd a lot of talk heading into the weekend, the vice president would be there right behind you deliberating with his family this weekend. anything leaking out about what those conversations intoity have produced? >> reporter: nothing is leaking out, steve, they are keeping these coverings very close to the vest. i can tell you a little bit of an update, just moments ago, the vice president's motorcade left and he went to a nearby country club where they have golf. so, who knows. he might be golfing. very stark contrast to what we are seeing in las vegas where the democratic candidates are preparing for tomorrow night's big debate it is a critical first test for the democratic candidates. i can tell you i have been speaking to supporters of vice president biden's, disappointed, quite frankly, he is not going
to be at the debate tomorrow night a little bit concern that that suggests he might be leaning away from a potential run and we have been talking about all of the hurdles that he would face if he were to get in now. of course, we have to catch up in terms of fund-raising, just last quarter alone, secretary clinton, vermont senator bernie sanders both raised more than $20 million respectively and then also have to catch up in terms of organizing a ground game in some of those early voting states and then some folks who say, look, this indecision isn't helping secretary clinton. there is one school of thought that says the vice president still has a little bit more time. he wants to wait and see how she does in tomorrow night's debate and also when she testifies before the benghazi committee, that is of course, coming a little bit later on october 22nd. bell have to wait and see. we do anticipate that he will make some type of decision within the next several days. steve? >> all right, the biden watch continues. thanks, kristen welker for that. go to the granite state where both republicans and democrats are always trying to woo independent voter, the case today at an event sponsored by
no labels, a group founded in 2010 pushing for more solutions and less partisanship. here are high late today that spam the political spectrum. >> behind me is the future. [ applause ] except for a couple of people in the audience i know. forget them. >> if we are serious about creating jobs, we need trade policies which create jobs in america. >> i don't think it's the system that's broken. i think it's the people that are running it that are broken. >> i am of a different ven generation than some of my older baby boomer brothers and sisters. >> joining me now is katy tur who has been soak it all in live in manchester. so, katie, we are hearing different pitch from the candidates, watching them go out and court their party bases, all showing up, democrats, republicans, some by satellite, to woo independents, people middle of the row, hearing
different messages from them today? >> we are hearing similar messages a lot of them are giving their regular stump speeches, talking point bus peppering a lot of words like compromise and reaching across the aisle and working together, some of them even touting their records, so far, not a lot of concrete plans on how they are gonna do this. these are a bunch of independent voter, 2,000 here throughout the day. when we have asked them if they have come to a decision on who they like after today, a lot of them say that they are still not sure, they have come out here to be educated by the candidates. when they are asked on stage though what they remembered from the day, one man piped up and said that he liked that donald trump said that compromise is not a dirty word. i think that was unexpected from him. i think when he was asked that questioned about compromising, being able to work with others, many expected him to say i just want to win. instead, he did say that he likes to compromise but it's gaed to compromise and get three times what you have asked for and win later. the typical donald trump. we are hearing a lot of different messages from a lot of different candidates.
i will say it is interesting to see how much donald trump and bernie sanders sound aid like in some areas on trade deals, on campaign finance and a few other things. steve? >> all right, katy tur in manchest manchester, thank you for that. head out to the hawkeye state, the man who is going from koz zig up to donald trump to taking him on, talking about ted cruz and he has got a cash haul to go with his tough talk, ruling out the most recent quarter with numbers bigger than jeb bush and marco rubio. today, cruz's campaign says the momentum hasn't stopped. $1 million, they say has flowed in since the start of the new quarter at the start of this month. his campaign is going all the way, cruz says. >> i think when you get down to the truth, the difference between my record and the other candidates is pretty marked and that's what this process of the campaign is all about. >> for more, let's go to vaughan hilliard, live in sacks city, iowa, where he is following ted cruz. interesting, he is sort of stepping up this campaign to win over donald trump's supporters,
explicit push here to get them into his camp. what's he doing on that front? >> reporter: hey, steve. listen, ted cruz is running a strong campaign here in iowa. he has 99 county chairs a great fund-raising haul, double what marco rubio did this last quarter around wants to put up a fight against donald trump. what we have seen the last several months, every step of the wake he said i'm not going to attack donald trump or anybody else in the field. this is remarks on thursday are the first time we have seen him say since he said he would pull a lion's share away. but one thing here is that donald trump has laid the groundwork, been in the southern states, he's a fund-raising haul that will allow him to go beyond just these first four states through the long haul, but the question is whether he is down playing being able to get donald trump's voters. he is running quite a campaign here in the state, donald trump is. so, whether ted cruz can actually rely on polling those voters over, that's question. >> all right, we will see. we have seen what's happened to the others. donald trump likes to remind us the others who attacked him.
see what fate awaits ted cruz. very impressive numbers. vaughan hilliard in iowa. coming up, florida congresswoman ileana ros-lehtinen on whether they are party will change paul ryan's mind about being the next speaker of the house and whether the benghazi's quest is on target. also have the latest on the "washington post" reporter jason rezaian following his conviction in an iranian court. stay tuned. you are watching mtp daily. you have two choices; the easy way or the hard way. you could choose a card that limits where you earn bonus cash back. or, you could make things easier on yourself. that's right, the quicksilver card from capital one. with quicksilver you earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, everywhere. so, let's try this again. what's in your wallet? but it is not the device that is mobile, it is you.
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new ahead >> you have probably heard from a lot of your colleagues. >> i have. i haven't change my answer and i have nothing more to add. i will leave it at that >> nbc's luke russert joins me from our washington bureau. luke, i guess two ways to read this, is he gin winly not interested in trying to kill off this talk or is he playing hard to get? >> i think probably the latter right now. i don't think he has gone before the cameras and said i 100% will not take the job. his press person tweeted out "before you ask, knowing has changed, i don't anticipate any news this week." and what exactly what cause there to be news, steve? >> well, from sources i have spoken to, paul ryan, if he is to go for this job, does not want to have to deal with the onslaught of conservative anger that kevin mccarthy and john boehner both had to deal with. if he is to do it he views it as
not only a selfless act, but a huge favor to the party, which is in complete disarray. there's a very aggressive recruitment approach going on, been going on all weekend, but if he is to take the job, he does not want to have to have an unclear path to 218 votes on the house floor. more likely than not, woe get that. look, there already is mobilization on the outside against his speakership, if you were to make the attempt at it, he does not want to have to get that muddy for a job he doesn't necessarily want. >> what about the question of plan b here, paul ryan does hold out, does say no, not a candidate for speaker, any indication where republicans would turn then? >> starting to see some names float to the surface. really interesting one today, bill flores, who is chairman of the republican study committee, a texan. he said if ryan were not to get involved, we have interest in the job. we are also hearing right before we call on the -- came on the air steve, michael mccall, the chairman of the homeland security committee. he is somebody who is viewed favorably by the establishment
but also extremely conservative. two texans there from conversations that i've had with texas members, the plan is they were going to threat some texas names out there, see which one does the best and then maybe coalesce around one candidate. remember, there is a 25-member-strong delegation from the gop in texas. if any of them runs, they instantly give them a favor if that block votes together, i shouldn't say favorite but a good chance if that block votes together. >> a lot of drama, intrigue there thank you for that update. appreciate it. >> indeed. >> with 247 republicans in the house of representatives, why is it so tough to find one who wants the top job? well, a new interview with nbc news, south carolina republican trey goudy, the chairman of the house committee investigating benghazi weighs in on just how impossible the speakers a job has become. >> the house is bothereding on ungovernable right now, the
speaker is a difficult job. we need to have a family conversation. sometimes you have to hit rock bottom before that conversation. >> i'm joined by ileana ros-lehtinen. let me start with the question, do you want paul ryan to be the next speaker of the house? >> absolutely. i think many of us are willing to sign up for babysitting duties, to drive his waive to work every day, whatever it takes to have a paul ryan, a principal legislator who stands strong on policy but is also pragmatic because this ray steve, is not just a one-person slot. no, it is really about an epic struggle for the soul of our republican party, the future of our gop. and i know that the handful of people who have been getting a lot of attention, but the overwhelming majority of us are -- want to govern, want to pass a budget, want to work with
the democrats. sure, we are proud to be republicans, but we understand that this is a bipartisan nation and we can't just always have it your way or the highway. so, we hope that folks look at paul ryan, and not through their litmus test. we have some who are still saying that paul ryan may not pass their test for the policy or for this and they put out their litmus test. well, my golly, paul ryan has proven as budget chairman, ways and means chairman, that he carries republican conservative values with him but he is pragmatic. we can't have a my way or we shut down the government. that is not going to help us to build our future as a republican party. >> such a big part of this story has been the factions that have sort of broken out on the republican side. >> that's shape. . members from the two different factions appeared with chuck on "meet the press" yesterday, charlie dent from pennsylvania.
i want to play that exchange and david brad from virginia. i want to play part of their exchange and ask to you weigh in on that let's listen to that first. >> with he need to expand the government swing of the republican party, those who thank have the capacity to say yes, ma'am. >> the senate has a major problem but shouldn't be waving a white flag ahead of time. the compromise comes later when we get to the white house. >> where do you come down on that question it takes -- the republicans need more backbone in standing up to the president or need to be doing more -- finding more ways to compromise and built consensus? >> i'm part of the group, along with charlie dent, he is one of our leaders, that's called a tuesday group and we are principal legislators, just like david brat is, but also pragmatic and common sense and we understand we have got to deal with the senate and the obama white house and we are going to fight tooth and nail for what we believe in but we don't think that shutting down the government is a credible approach to being a majority party. and the american people will quickly get tired of this drama
every -- every month over one issue or another. i may be in favor of that issue and i strongly believe that but does it mean that everybody has to agree with me or i'm not gonna fund the government? these not the way -- not what we were sent there to do and i think the american people are looking for leadership, like a charlie dent. i hope that maybe he is thinking of running for speaker. or paul ryan. and if these guys -- if a paul ryan is not good enough for certain people, then you have got to say well, accident get my way but let's make it unanimous like it used to be and let's forward that name. >> but that raises an interesting question. i mean, if paul ryan isn't good enough for everybody, if kevin mccarthy we were told had these great personal relationships with some of the most conservative members shall wasn't acceptable enough to them, that question that trey gowdy raised, is the house even governable or is there a faction of republicans who just want to be separate, be apart from the leadership and the party establishment, no matter what? >> i think there might be that
faction, but steve, what i think is that we have got to bring it to a vote. web trey says we have got to have a family discussion, we have got a dysfunctional family right now, but i say let's take it -- let's take it to the test. we have got this motion to vacate the chair. let's put it for a vote. i think that most of the folks will be voting to make sure that we keep the government going, that we have a speaker, whether it's john boehner and hats off to him for keeping the job for as long as it takes, kevin mccarthy, who has done a fabulous job as majority leader and now paul ryan, those people aren't good enough and now we are thinking that paul ryan isn't gonna be good enough? by golly, i mean, what does it take? we are -- they are principled folks who really try their best to get the house in operations and not -- not put us in disarray. so let's not throw everything to this one faction and say you get the keys to the kingdom and the overwhelming majority ofdunces
corner. let's bring it to a vote and see the overwhelming majority want to keep this government open. we will stand for our principles but got to get the job done for the american people. >> congresswoman ileana ros-lehtinen, thank you. >> thank you, steve. up next, get you caught up on the who, what, where, when and why in today's headlines, including who is getting disinvited from tomorrow's democratic debate after talking to me. plus, could vladimir putin's aggressive moves in syria backfire? former meet the press moderator martin cal be talks to chuck todd about the russian leader's imperial gamble. stay tuned. glad i could help you plan for your retirement. alright, kelly and promise me that you'll try that taco place on south street. and we have portfolio planning tools to help you manage your ira. yeah, you're old 401k give me your phone. the rollover consultants give you step-by-step help. no set-up fees. use your potion. sorry, not you. my pleasure. goodnight, tim. for all the confidence you need.
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daily." here's what she said to me last week. >> i have also been calling for more debates sponsored by the dnc. right now, as you know, the dnc is only allowed for six sanctions debates and exclusivity clause, any candidate participates in a debate not authorized by the dnc, you are blocked. >> by the way, the bernie sanders' campaign is offering a tollcy gabbert one of their seats to tomorrow night's debate. turning to the what, a second hill endorsement for bernie sander, courtesy of minnesota congressman keith ellison, joins his fellow progressive caucus co-chair, raul grijalva, endorsed sanders last week. hillary clinton has over 100 members of congress pledging their support to her. today's where north korea, secretive communist state held a massive military parade on saturday, up to a million people marched past dictator kim
jong-un. bill neely was at the parade and a you can find the latest on nbc.com. to the when, january, when california's automatic voter registration will begin. governor jerry brown signing legislation on saturday that will register californians to vote automatically when they get a driver's license. the governor's office said that 6.6 million californians are eligible to vote but are unregistered. oregon passed a similar law back in march. finally, the why. it comes from a new cnn south carolina poll where hillary clinton leads bernie sanders 70-20% in the palmetto state. breaking down the numbers, they are you will have chily tied, sanders and clinton are among white voters but clinton has a stagger 77-point advantage among black voters. as for the why, the numbers in iowa and new hampshire are none too kind to the clinton campaign this poll shows hillary's
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welcome back to this monday edition of mtp. i'm steve kornacki in for chuck todd. now to troubling news for an american journalist imprinced in iran. iranian state tv reports today that "washington post" correspondent jason rezaian held now for more than 14 months in iran has been convicted. "post" executive editor martin baron is calling the conviction an outrageous injustice. for now, many details remain unknown. nbc news tehran bureau chief ali arouzi joins us from london. what do we know so far about this conviction? >> reporter: steve, the iranian legal system is notoriously opaque so we don't know very much and i doubt jason rezaian knows very much of what's going on. he is being kept in solitary confinement, very little access to the outside world. what we have been able to piece together is what state media has
put out over the last 14 months and they have accused him of some very serious charges, accused him of collecting confidential information in iran and passing it on to hostile governments, of writing a letter to president obama, of endangering national security. and today, state tv put out a report saying that he had been collecting information on individuals that had been circumventing sanctions and passing that information on to the u.s. authorities. now, these are all very serious charges. he has 20 days to appeal this conviction. and this period is going to be key. if they set a bail for jason in the next month or so, that could be an indication that they would be willing to let him go, but if the iranians are holding out for a prisoner swap, which is something they have indicated over the course of the last few weeks, than that could really complicate matters much further answered could be in prison for a lot longer than he has been now. steve? >> all right, ali arouzi in
london. thank you for that update. let's turn now to the situation in syria, where the u.s. is making the first moves to replace the failed train and equip program. a military spokesperson says the cargo planes dropped small arms ammunition to arab groups fighting isis in northern syria on sunday. meanwhile, russia says that it is stepping up its air strikes in syria, announcing this morning that its military plane also hit more than 50 isis targets in syria in 24 hours. russia claims the air strikes are part of an ongoing effort to combat isis but u.s. officials believe that vladimir putin's main goal is to prop up syrian president bashar al assad. speaking to cbs news, president obama said that russia's new more aggressive offensive in syria is actually a sign of putin's weakness. >> can you imagine anything happening in syria of any significance at all without the russians now being involved in it and having a part of it? >> but that was true before. deep in mind that for the last five years, the russians have provided arms, provided
financing, as have the iranians, as hezbollah. >> they haven't had bombing and haven't had troops on the ground. >> and the fact that they had to do this is not an indication of strength, it is an indication that their strategy did not work. >> as tension between u.s. and russia escalates, chuck todd sat down with a former moderator of "meet the press" and a former moscow bureau chief for nbc news, marvin cal be, he is out with a new book and here is what he told chuck. >> we joked before, add syria anda new book and here is what told chuck. >> we joked before, add syria and maybe the world. what is he up to, how should we interpret what he is doing in syria? >> from the first day that i began to do research on this book, dthere was one issue that was in my mind what is putin up
to? what at the end of the day is he prepared to accept? when he operates in ukraine, he is operating in his own backyard, ukraine, the last 6, 700 years was a part of russia. so, for someone who was a russian leader looking down to the southwest, that's his neighborhood and his corner. so, he figures he could work there with immunity. he also believed when he took crimea and then moved into ukraine that the west would let him do it. >> he is right. >> and they absolutely did. >> yeah. >> and the question right now with syria is to what extent can he do that and, in affect, get away with it much the same with way he did in ukraine. i don't want to suggest that putin is a total nut and is interested in world conquest, because he is not. behind all of the bravado is an extremely vulnerable russian
leader, not just the economy, by the way, but more important than that, the whole south -- this whole southern rim of russia is filled with 20 million sunni muslims. now, if he begins to attack sunnis, which is what he is doing, on behalf of shia, which is what he is doing, and protecting, he is building up an enormous amount of resentment among literally one-fifth of his population. >> do you think he is a -- he hasn't said it, but it feels as if he has taken sides in the sunni/shia 1,000-year-old conflict. >> i think he has taken sides and it is an incredibly risky, dangerous step, because what he is clearly trying to do i say clearly, nothing is that clear with putin, but what he appears to be doing right now is creating a coalition with putin
at the top of it and beneath it, you would have syria, iran and iraq. now, iraq is supposed to be ours, because we invested billions in lives and money. but he is rolling the dice. i mean, the book is called "imperial gamble" because he's a gambler. he tries hard to roll the dice on just about anything and he really feels, he has an extraordinary sense of self-confidence, public bravado, he can do things no one else can. >> funny, somebody, a very senior former diplomat said this week, to understand putin, you need to understand this one fact, he thinks gorbachev is not a hero. he does not view gorbachev as a russian hero, doesn't view yeltsin as a russian empire, he views them as ceding the empire. >> if you are a great russian nationalist, which is what putin is you would look at any russian leader who ceded authority and
control of any part of the russian empire to the west, to be a weak leader. putin's enemy is himself because this is a man, despite all of the public side and the bravado and all that, this is a man who is incredibly weak. and on any given day, a great russian word, means spontaneity, any given day the place can blow and he is sitting on top of that right now. and we in the west look upon him as somebody who was running a huge empire. yes, in terms of territory, but not in terms of strength. >> all right. let me go back to something that was hotly contested in the 2012 debate and republicans are still sort of pushing this talking point, which is putin and russia the greatest existential threat to the united states?
>> i don't think so, because my view of russia is not that of a superpower. russia has a lot of nuclear weapons, but that doesn't make it a superpower. no country can lose 4% a year in the economy. no country can have that undercurrent of mossliuslim discontent. no country can live with the kind of political unhappiness that putin has imposed and be a strong superpower. >> is the answer then for the united states to push back, ratchet up sanctions, that if he is this vulnerable, should we be saying, okay, let's push it over the edge? >> no i tell you, chuck, i think what we should be doing more than anything is trying to understand. i mean, the reason i did this book was to try to get people to understand what putin is, what he represents, what he stands for, so that when we do make policy, as the president has to do it, when he does make policy, it be based on reality. would you believe that a
university like harvard, for a time, had no one teaching russian history in the 1990s? that's a because we forgot about it. now we have to remember. >> and clearly, putin remembers it. any way, marvin kalb, the book is "imperial gamble" a time everybody is trying to figure putin out. great time with your book. congratulations. >> thank you very much. still ahead, the benghazi whistleblower, a former benghazi committee investigator's lawsuit could pull back the curtains on the committee's true intentions. we will have the details next. and you are looking at live pictures of ohio governor john kasich as he is speaking right now at the no labels conference in manchester, new hampshire, going to keep an eye on that and bring you any news as it unfolds. i can't find my discover card! wait, i can freeze my account. [touch tone] introducing freeze it, from discover. it allows you to prevent new purchases on your account in seconds if your card is misplaced. not here... ♪
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when the democratic presidential candidates meet on that debate stage tomorrow night, it is going to be the first time in seven years that hillary clinton takes part in a presidential primary debate, but it is certainly not clinton's first rodeo. much more on all of the democratic candidates' debate prep ahead.
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new questions about the house benghazi committee with explosive allegations from a former insider. the a a recall former intelligence officer and investigator for the committee says he lost his job in part because he refused to focus his investigative efforts solely on former secretary of state hillary clinton. he alleges clinton became the target of the committee after revelations last march she used a private e-mail server as secretary of state. >> as i stated, hillary clinton has a lot of explaining to go. we, however, did not need to shift resources to hyper focus on hillary clinton. i honestly do not believe this investigation was set up to go after hillary. i believe it shifted that way. >> podliska is moving ahead with a lawsuit against the committee, alleging he was punish for taking leave to go on active military duty. in an interview with nbc news, trey gowdy forcefully denied the allegations and say podliska was
let go because of his poor performance. >> that's damn lie and not a word i often used but rarely is it so even proven. he never said a word about hillary clinton until it looked like he was gonna lose his mediation and then he bent on another television show and made this allegation, but he never said a word about it in june, july, august, september or october, despite having ample opportunity to do so. >> msnbc chief legal correspondent, ari melber, has been following this closely. joins me now. sounds like there's news on this in the last hour the situation escalating even furtherer? >> that's correct. the breaking news this afternoon is that podliska's lawyers putting of you the a letter, saying they violated confidentiality rules that gowdy talked about mediation, the counseling process, governed by federal law, dispute resolution, supposed to essentially remain private. the cease and desist is his lawyers saying the committee,
your rebuttal, your counterattack, if you will, is itself a violation, inappropriate, please stop. more than they want to file in federal court regarding the employee termination issues. i spoke to the lawyers. they say they spoke to him in the last 24 hours and he disputes chair gowdy's claim they never met. he said they met twice and he briefed him in a small committee. that it's legal scuffling. we know every point in this dispute, chairman gowdy denied these charges. rereached out for a comment. it shows before they get to court, there is going to be a big public battle here. >> strong allegations, strong denials. thank you for joining us. >> you got it. >> up next, in "the lid," a preview of tomorrow's democratic debate. life's all about learning.... asking questions....
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it's gotten squarer. over the years. brighter. bigger. thinner. even curvier. but what's next? for all binge watchers. movie geeks. sports freaks. x1 from xfinity will change the way you experience tv. welcome now to "the lid" where we cap off today's biggest stories in politics. we are joined by heather mcgee, president of demos and rihan slan of the national review. tomorrow the first democratic debate in las vegas. we set expectations for this thing. i noticed hillary clinton weighs in on keystone, weighs in on tpp, rolls out a wall street reform package.
she seems to be trying to address all the potential vulnerabilities to an attack from bernie sanders or anybody on that stage with her. has she done a good job inoculating herself from attacks on the left? >> i think it will be interesting to see how much policy coherence there is among the democratic party. you see sanders, o'malley and clinton going after each other how quickly the other person can get to get-free college for all. that is huge for the american people, huge for the party that there is such coherence on big policy issues that can transform people's lives. >> as a conservative, are you watching with sort of anticipation of hillary clinton being attacked to say we hope they do damage to her here? how do you watch the democratic debate? >> i guess the way i think about it is this, the democratic coalition under obama became a very expensive coalition. this includes upper middle class
suburbanites, very poor people in the rural south. a lot of those folks who were not always assertive or not in a position to be assertive, were not listened to, a lot of them are really asserting themselves and demanding their place at the table. when like at those candidates right now, the interesting question is who is going to speak to that energy? who is going to speak to a lot of the democrats who have been ensuring democratic victories in the past but haven't been listened for a long time that. will be a big story. >> that is an interesting point. we put the poll up earlier. talk about african-american voters in south carolina in the south. the clinton campaign, i've got trouble in iowa and new hampshire in these early states, they point to south carolina into the south and say this is our fire wall. support with african-american voters. it is staggering in the south carolina polls. she is beating bernie sanders by 77 points among african-american voters. among whites, dead even.
what is that connection? >> the connection is very much a part of the legacy of her husband. it's something frankly a lot of insiders are talking about. if biden were to get into the race. because biden had been so loyal to president obama back on the campaign trail in 2008. he never attacked them. he's been the vice president eight years. if you were on the bernie sanders camp, would you say give me time with voters in south carolina. i will show that i'm actually more for the issues that will create upward mobility and reinvestment in black communities in the south than hillary clinton is. i don't think. i think having bernie sanders in the race moved her to the left. there is not a ton of daylight on these economic issues. >> we talk about hillary clinton and how she tried to shore up her standing on the left. there is bernie sanders. there is one vulnerability for bernie sanders on the left. the issue of guns. i want to play this exchange he had with chuck todd on that
subject. >> one of the things some of your democratic opponents might hit you on is the vote did you to protect manufacturers from liability. why single just them out for full protection on liability? >> that was a complicated vote and i'm willing to see changes in that provision. >> interesting moment. he's anticipating whether it's hillary or martin o'malley or somebody saying bernie sanders, i know a lot of progressives like you. when it comes to guns, you have cast a lot of votes that people on the left may not be comfortable with. it's interesting when we think of bernie sanders we think of him as the most liberal guy in the room. guns is the exception to that. >> heather was talking about policy coherence early on. you could talk about identity coherence. i'd say you actually still do have a fair number of pro-life democrats. in terms of rank and file voters. you have none among elected officials. there is a movement towards greater ideological coherence.
early he was in favor of gun rights, i think that is getting squeezed out because the primary electorate is in a different place. a lot of those folks who have a kind of fuzzier constellation of views, they are not as important in a primary process. i don't think bernie sanders will have any hesitation turning on a dime and getting right with the official left position on every issue. >> we'll see. we have a minute left. the other bit of news today, ted cruz, big fund-raising numbers last week. his campaign saying another $1 million has come in this month. he is saying, the trump thing is going to fade. i am going to take the trump voters. do you see that happening? the trump people moving to ted cruz? >> i think he is extremely good raising hard money. that is incredibly important. i think he is going to be durable. he will last a long time because he's running against the republican party. he's running against the establishment, the mainstream. i think there is some purchase there. >> when you add the trump, ben
carson, carly fiorina and ted cruz numbers, you're over 60% in some polls. chuck will be back tomorrow with more "mtp daily." erica hill picks up our coverage next. right now on msnbc, a clinton conspiracy? the fallout after a former investigator says the house ben ghazi committee is a partisan witch-hunt. >> debate countdown. just over 24 hours until the democratic presidential debate, the first time front-runner hillary clinton will share the stage with her democratic rivals. >> and fed up. hall of fame quarter terry bradshaw slams the nfl. its position on domestic violence and greg hardy. >> i'm erica hill. we begin with breaking news and the growing controversy over the house benghazi committee. a former investigator is now accusing the