if it's thursday, it's a republican red alert. the establishment letting the rank and file know that placing a bet on an ex-casino king is okay. is warming up to trump really more about crushing cruz before it's too late? this is "mtp daily" and it starts right now. good evening, welcome to "mtp daily." before you go run out for that last minute milk and bread, as you brace for the snowstorm here on the east coast, just know we've got a packed show. bernie versus hillary, how clin is running as an underdog. a shot poll, for some it's hard to believe. sometimes when a poll is hard to believe, maybe you shouldn't believe. we'll get into those numbers later in the show. right to tonight's take. republican establishment is finally getting comfortable, i guess, with donald trump. but is it about acceptance for
trump or a strategy to sink his chief rival right now before he gets strong? it all started after the recent republican debate in south carolina. that's when the establishment's welcome wagon roll the up to the gop front-runner. now, trump is using it as a talking point on the trail, and against cruz. he just slammed cruz moments ago for being an outsider. >> here's a united states senator, republican, done have support of one other republican senator. there's something wrong there. and i can tell you, they like me, those guys. and there's nothing wrong with that, folks. we've got to make deals. we want to make deals. we want to make the right deals. >> do you have whiplash? now, the big of the outsider candidate is bragging about being an insider. it's a big turn. today, cruz attacked trump on the very same point. >> if as a voter you think that what we need is more republicans if washington to cut a deal with harry reid and nancy pelosi and
chuck schumer, i guess donald trump's your guy. what bob dole is saying and the establishment is saying one guy that scares the heck out of us is cruz. >> today the cruz campaign feels good about its messaging. considering what's going on here. we shall see. we do have brand-new iowa numbers that came out within the last hour. it claims that donald trump is up on cruz by 11 points in iowa. 37-26. the numbers, they may be fascinating, but they do not support any other polling we've seen in iowa. and the turnout that this poll is assuming would be the biggest turnout of any republican event in the history of the state of iowa. and in fact, among most likely caucusgoers, this poll does admit that cruz is a little bit ahead of trump. lots of grains of salt. we'll break that down later. developments in iowa moving quickly and the establishment is responding fast. 24 hours ago, bob dole, a regular target of ted cruz, frankly, told "the new york times" that the party would face
cataclysmic and wholesale losses with cruz as the nominee and trump would give them a better shot against hillary clinton. he questions cruz's allegiance to the pear. party. trump said, at time the benefit of the pledge was fair treatment assurance. fast forward to today. relub reluctant establishment is happy to oblige. we told you about bob dole. the editorial page of the "wall street journal." man who owns that paper, rupert murdoch. iowa government terry branstad, the longest serving governor in american history who went out of his way to knock cruz but did stop short of endorsing trump. no nottism's a fan. graham said idea of trump v. cruz is a false choice. >> if you nominate trump and cruz you get the same outcome.
whether it's death by being shot or poisoning, it doesn't matter. i don't think the outcome will be substantially different. dishonest, hillary clinton and the eyes of the american people beats crazy. >> despite the horse race polls the bet on trump remains risky. trump's favorability is a liability. trump's rating with all americans 29% compared to a 58% negative rating accord to the nbc/"wall street journal" poll. cruz doesn't fair much better with 31%. his negatives are nowhere near high as trump's. break down the numbers further, african-americans, latinos, women, independents, cruz's net negative doesn't dip below 20. trump, his worst is a whopping 72%. in short, trump's best numbers are still worse than cruz's worst numbers among these groups
of voters. now there's no doubt trump would be a wild card in the general election. but if the choice. comes down to predictable race against the current front-runner and hillary clinton and unpredictable race they may see value in the unpredictable, interrupt. the republican establishment wants the nomination. they want one of their guys. rubio, christie, bush, kasich even. they just might recognize one target is easier to take down right now than two. if ted cruz wins iowa, donald trump would likely win new hampshire. but the momentum could lead to a second-place showing for cruz and leave the establishment fight two strong opponents and it's trump/cruz until cleveland. if cruz gets the rugged pulled out in iowa there's an opening for a different second place in new hampshire. cruz may fade. one of the four, the quartet, rubio, christie, bush, kasich, maybe one finishes second and they end up being the next guy
in line to try to take down trump. a long shot but less of a long shot than running up against potentially cruz. we'll see. at least maybe to the convention. and that's the gamble. if trump wins iowa and new hampshire, both establishment and cruz could end up being left in the dust. first guest tonight, pursue the republican nomination in 2011, former minnesota governor, tim pawlenty talked about how republicans needed to be the party of sam's club, not just the country leave. currently president and ce of of the financials services round table. so in this establishment versus outsiders and the quote/unquote establishment going, uh-oh, we have no candidate, we have to pick between trump and cruz, where you do you lie? >> the activists are almost all now conservatives. there's no sense of a big establishment -- >> i remember when you were considered an outsider. when you wanted to run in for
the u.s. senate and the establishment said, hey, hey, you can't do that, mr. pawlenty. >> the notion there's some big bloc of establishment of republicans other than the donor class, it doesn't really exist any significant degree at the activist primary caucus voter level. >> so this, where do you feel like this angst is, angst is about simply winning they think they can't win we've got to pick the guy that's going to make it at least less hard? >> well, donald trump, by some polls, has polled even or close to even with hillary clinton national. i think the premise that he can't win or cruz can't win nationally is no longer something that people can throw out as a roadblock. it's a number of things. one tactically trump is clever as a candidate and politician than anyone imagined but a strategic level tapping into the notion that the country has deteriorated and that he's the leader of the strong leader who is going tobly it back and bring it back in simple, clear, declarative and sometimes ugly
terms. >> this -- look, there are some that are not -- not going to accept this idea of a choice between these two guys, lindsey graham, who is colorful, today, uses this expression we talked about earlier on the show of if that's my choice it's like picking between being shot and poisoned. he's a win at whatever cost, looking for a candidate that can win, and he obviously thinks neither one can win. >> as between those two, look, a long way between now and next november. ted cruz isn't particularly well-liked in congress on the senate side. but the activists don't care. the idea that other senators don't like him, the activists don't care. in fact, that's a badge of honor for him. it doesn't hurt him who can win head to head with hillary clinton, as of today, those two are within striking distance. >> the so-called establishment candidates, jeb bush, christie, kasich, marco rubio, hasn't been able to figure out how to appeal to the new working class wing of the republican party. i remember when a lot 0 people
were talking about you, you kept talking about the working class wing in the republican party, mitt romney wasn't comfortable talking to well. john mccain never figured out how to tap into it. none of the establishment figures figured out how to tackle it. >> if you look the a musical performer, it makes a big difference whether they're just singing lyrics or whether they also lived them. you can tell. there's an authenticity that comes with it. >> trump lives the lyrics? >> think about trump where he in his world he's self-made in the sense that new york he got a million dollar loan from his dad but he came from outside manhattan, viewed him as somebody who wasn't up to their standard. >> true elite sort of looked down at. >> though he wears fancy clothes from manhattan and a billionaire sounds like a person you and i would meet at the vfw and have a miller high life. if he didn't have the suit on, he'd fit in. >> does cruz feel like that? >> no.
>> what's holding him back, there isn't that -- there isn't that connection that he's made. he's certainly made a connection with conservative activists but the connection with the populist he hasn't made yet. >> the conservative challenge isn't trying to deal with sam club would-be republicans you have to do better with women, hispanic, latino, modest income or poorer voters. we've got a lot of work to do. trump may not do well in some categories but he might overperform in others. >> so are you accepting the idea that these are the two candidates and nobody else really can pop? >> if the so-called establishment cluster can consolidate quickly and get behind one remaining candidate so-called establishment money coulding aga gate behind the candidate there's a path. at this point, people are beginning to realize this is a likely, if not probable, trump maybe cruzzing but probably trump nomination. >> sense you work in washington, you live in minnesota, why is the washington republican class
leaning trump over cruz? your explanation. >> i don't think the washington political class has knowledge, awareness or connectivity to trump. he doesn't need their money. he doesn't need their input, he's got his on. >> is this about cruz and that's why they say, fine, trump, because they don't like him? >> i think there's a sense, perhaps, that trumps more pr pragmatic at some level. i don't think anybody knows. donald trump has evolved, to put it charitably over the years, and nobody knows what they're getting with donald trump they're an a care riz mattic, business leader. >> governor, good to sow ysee y >> there you go, acceptance of trump keeps growing and growing. hillary clinton launches new line of attack on bernie sanders as both candidates begin to make closing arguments to iowa. we'll get the latest from both campaigns next. again, shocking numbers out of iowa. later, could independent
voters be the secret to success for sanders or establishment republicans like john kasich? are there new hampshire residents deciding between sanders and kasich? new numbers, stay tuned. control freak... i like to think of myself as more of a control... enthusiast. mmm, a perfect 177-degrees. and that's why this road warrior rents from national. i can bypass the counter and go straight to my car. and i don't have to talk to any humans, unless i want to. and i don't. and national lets me choose any car in the aisle. control. it's so, what's the word?... sexy. go national. go like a pro. i'm here to get the lady of the house back on her feet.
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battle between hillary clinton and bernie sanders is getting more intense as we count down iowa after sanders lumped planned parenthood in the establishment part of the party favoring clinton. emily's list jumped in saying sanders regards women's health as a quote afterthought. saying that sanders so-called attacks are, quote the same political calculations republicans make. meantime, on april different front, clinton campaign is trying to push the issue of national security against sanders and his call for normalized relations with iran. hillary clinton herself threw logs on that fire in a rally in iowa today. >> he suggested we invite iranian troops into syria. that is like asking the arsonist to be the firefighter, as bad as
things are in syria -- and they are -- more iranian troops will only make it worse. >> as clinton tries to build closing argument around competence, electability, cnn's latest poll has a shock. sanders surging and surging way ahead in iowa, getting an 18-point lead among likely democratic caucus, 18-point flip, he's up eight since december as clinton fall business 11. the clinton campaign mantra is echoing her argument in 2008, talking about experience getting the job done. check out clinton's latest ad which some view as a closing argument. >> and now, the first lady who helped
get health care for 8 million kids, the senator who helped the city rise again. the secretary of state who stood up for america and stared down hostile leaders around the world the one candidate for president who has everything it takes to do every part of the job. >> here she is on the campaign
trail echoing that message. >> i'll tell you, i'm not interested in ideas that sound good on paper but will never make it in the real world. in theory, there's a lot to like about some of his ideas but in theory, is it enough? a president has to deliver in reality. >> that line of attack was strikingly familiar to some of white house covered clinton/obama campaign in '08. take a listen. >> the sky will open, the
light will come down, celestial choirs will be singing and everyone will know we should do the right thing and the world will be perfect! maybe i've just lived a little long but i have no illusions how hard this is going to be.
you are not going to wave the magic wand and have the special interests disappear. >> while clinton tries to peek to the heads of democratic voters, sanders, on the other hand, is appealing to party's heart. in fact, look at his latest ad and what may be his closing argument. ♪ like they've all come to look for america ♪ >> get your hackie sack out, drum circle action. upbeat ad. latest data from oou i, new hampshire shows why closing arguments are important. clinton lead as among older, church going, blue collar voters. sanders backers nonreligious, college educated white voters. . new hampshire, sanders lead business so much in that party among grads and nongrads. in many ways sanders represents what whites and the democratic party are becoming, clinton represents who they used to be.
joining me now, the chief strategist for the hillary clinton campaign, joel beninson. >> you've been so formal. thank you. >> i've got to start with -- i'm going to start the cnn poll. >> yeah. >> do you believe, your behind in iowa, i know they have you behind eight points. do you believe you're behind in iowa? >> well, no. we don't. i'm so glad you showed clips from 2008. i wish you would have showed cnn's poll from 2008, chuck, because they had, right-the caucuses, hillary clinton leading barack obama by two points. barack obama finished nine points ahead of hillary clinton in that cycle. they had joni ernst before her election winning by two points and she won by 8 1/2. look the other thing here is polling in caucuses in these states you ought to look at people's track recording like you do with candidates. in this case, i hate to say it to my friends at cnn, their
track record here has been pretty off. we're confident that this is way off. we are not behind in iowa. we are in a tight race there, competing for every vote. we're looking forward to caucuses. we talked about this the other day, both of these states that you're looking at, voters make up their minds very late. in iowa, in 2008, a quarter to 30% of the electorate made up their minds in the laugh week. new hampshire, 50% made up their minds in the last week. keep perspective on the polls because what's going to matter is what happens between now and then. >> let me go to what appears to be among the closing arguments here -- maybe literally to say closing argument but we're getting to nitty-gritty time -- there is a head versus heart argument here. you were on the other side of this, again, eight years ago. it is -- it is hard to fire up voters for the pragmatic choice, is it not? there depends where voters are in their lives. remember, 2008, coming out of
eight year of the bush administration. now, we've had a democratic president who has made inroads, brought us back from this crisis, and i think the question voters are asking -- i think this does go to their hearts -- voters are saying, hey, i'm clawing my way back here. which of the people can get things done for me and family that are going to improve our lives, that are going to get us back to the level of security we had and we wanted, a sense we can get ahead and stay ahead? i think that's a hard issue. that's the argument hillary clinton's making. she's got the experience and tenacity to get things done. she has said repeatedly on the campaign, she's a progressive who likes to get things done. she's got a strong track record of doing that. i think that's the right contrast and message to be drawing as we go down and close here vis-a-vis senator sanders. >> you're campaign heldite fifth conference call about something having to do with bernie sanders. you've gone through the following issues, first started with data breach controversy with the dnc, health care, guns,
wall street attack ad, now iran. is it -- why is this not look like you guys are searching for something that sticks when it comes to going after senator sanders? >> i don't think it's about searching for something that sticks, chuck. i think what's going on, we're in a phase of the campaign, both candidates are out there drawing contrasts with people. talking about guns and health care, very much in the news, because he -- senator sanders had a debate eve conversion on two issues he had dug his heels in on and he says he never changes positions. he agrees, after months of critique and refusing to, that we should be ending the immunity provision for gun manufacturers that he voted for. he agreed that the questions that secretary clinton, legitimate questions about the practical aspects of the health care plan he had been advocating for 25 years and introduced nine times in congress with co-sponsors, by the way, never getting it to a vote, had flaws
in and yes request he has to ch. candidates should get more scrutiny from the media, their opponent. he's been going at us. we've been endorsed by planned parenthood and the human rights campaign. he called those groups part of the establishment. people on the front lines fighting for women's health and equality and lgbt americans and he's making an attack on them as part of the establishment, i mean this is all fair game. we expect it. i'm sure they do, too. >> joel, let me ask you a question, either iowa or new hampshire must-win for you? there this is a marathon, not a sprint. i don't look at any state as must-wins before anybody's gone to the polls. we've always known new hampshire would be very tight, competitive. it's nor new englanders, they are like favorite sons when they run in the new hampshire prim mary. we feel good about iowa. we feel good about our ground game. and we're looking at doing well in these first two states and going beyond that to a bunch of states where we think we're in
very good position to pick up delegates we need to win this. >> you used the word doing well. can you define doing well without winning when it comes to iowa. >> we're going to win in iowa, chuck. i think you don't -- you don't go into these things with a road map for how you plan to withdraw. you go in with a road map how you win. that's what we're doing. i'm sure the sanders camp is doing the same thing. i don't go into any race overconfident. voters are making up their decisions in last week. we feel that's a state where secretary clinton's message about improving people's lives resonates, drawing a clear difference on the national security issues and who can keep us safe are going to play very well for us. >> joel beneson, chief strategist for the clinton campaign. jeff weaver, campaign manager for bernie sanders. welcome back. >> how are you? >> do you believe you're ahead in iowa? >> i believe there's a tight race going on right now in iowa. >> the poll, do you believe the
eight-point lead. >> i'd like to believe it. i'm not going to say we're eight points ahead. we've seen a tremendous amount of movement in senator sanders' direction. poll over poll, from the same company, it shows a significant amount of movement. so he has momentum. >> are you oddly at all nervous there's an expectation that you win iowa and suddenly if you lose by two points, it's de -- your folks are deflated though six months ago you would have been shocked? >> no. >> are you worried about that? >> if we're close in iowa, that's a win. we're fighting to win there. but we've never said iowa is a must-win. i don't believe it's a must-win. we need to do well in iowa and i think we will do well in iowa. >> the clinton critique -- >> wait, which one? >> this idea that many of senator sanders' ideas have never gotten off the ground and there isn't a road map to figuring out how to pass medicare for all. why is that not a legitimate
critique. >> presidential campaign is about who has vision where we're going to take the country. a concrete example, last congress senator sanders passed with mccain one of the most expansive changes to veterans' health care in the history of the country. he started out at $25 billion, brought it to the floor, came a few votes short. went back, got $15 billion. if he started at $15 billion he would have ended up with $5 been. it's about articulating a vision and getting as close as you can to the vision. we don't want to limit our vision to what the republican congress will accept. if you do that, might as well vote for john kasich. >> if that's the case when it comes to medicare for all, why doesn't he have a more expansive vision, say, for gun safety? why does he advocate the pragmatic, do what you can or -- i mean, why does that not match sort of the we want to do big things here -- >> i think he does have an expansive view for gun safety he
supports instant background checks, weapons ban. i don't know why you think that's a small thing. >> he also said you've got tobly people, see what you can get past. medicare for all is something if you said you've got to see what you can get passed he's advocating obama -- >> it's what the american people support. american people support things in senator sanders' congress. the fact that congress doesn't pass it, that's different. i mean we're not so afraid to bring in young people and new people. we think those people should be brought in and with that we'll bring it new, now senators, house members. >> specific critique on iran. you've worked for senator sanders a long time. is -- is that what he's advocating, totally normalizes relations with iran. >> no, what he advocates for over time increasingly, you know, building back a relationship with iran and other countries. look, this is the same
critique -- >> do you trust iran to help in syria? >> remember -- you could have run another video from 2008 with sect clinton calling then. senator obama naive, he would have conversations with people without preconditions. this is the same rehashed attacks from 2008. most attacks take out bernie sanders you can put in senator barack obama and you wouldn't know the difference. >> you think it's exactly the same? >> unning are the same campaign, same line of attacks, with the same results. >> does he think iran is somebody that can help solve the crisis in syria? >> yes. you need to bring all of the players in the region together. the key goal right now in the middle east is destroying isis, period. >> jeff weaver, campaign manager, thank you. >> thank you. >> still ahead -- will new hampshire independent voters play favorites? how to rate the candidates on both sides of the aisle and which side they decide to vote for could determine who wins. by the way, the issue of independent in new hampshire
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most of the talk so far this election season has been about democrats and republicans. independent voter will make a big difference. independents can radically change the outcome in new hampshire even more than other places. voter without party allegiance are allowed to vote in either democratic or republican prime mars in the granite state. which ballot do independent voters choose february 9th? a huge issue in 2000. it craters the bradley campaign on the democratic side, because all of the people picked mccain. it a new poll today, 38% of independents say they are sure
they're voting in the republican primary, 29% of independents say they're sure they're taking a democratic ballot. 33% uncertain. wurn-third of the don't know which ballot they're going to pick before they cast their vote. looking at our past exist polls the independent vote does make a huge difference especially the republican side. bush beat mccain among republican voters but mccain dominated independent vote and won the state. on the democratic side that year, bill bradley's strength among independent was not enough to defeat al gore, success of the democratic base because not enough independents participated in the prime mar. 2008 the same for republicans, mccain's strength, independents propelled him to victory though romney narrowly won among republicans. hillary clinton still won the primary. so this time around, who will get the support of the critical independent voters? when it comes favorability, look at this, bernie sanders who is by far the most pos tvly viewed
candidate with a 28% favorable rating among independents, 27 plus net fav. john case net favor. cruz and trump have the lowest among independents, that shouldn't surprise you, given what they're doing to appeal and the voters are appealing to to. bill kristol, susan page, and democratic strategist, jamal simmons. welcome, you were on the gore campaign. >> i was. >> and remember -- i remember, all of the tracking polls in both campaigns had bradley ahead. i remember the bradley people going, we hope mccain doesn't surge and that's what happened. >> right. totally unpredictable. looked at '08, what happened to barack obama in '08, youth voters dropped off. the same thing, you got on weaver about the dynamic of the
campaign and i they are similar, the clinton campaign is running a wet blanket campaign on bernie sanders, he's not the dream and hope but young voters may make the difference for sanders or they may not show up and then he doesn't do as well. >> these independent voters who have you watched? christie and kasich are both desperately trying to appeal to the group of quirky new hampshire independents. >> they get the quirky ones. i think sanders gets the young ones. don't you think? i'm republican, so i'm -- >> rubio wanted to be the millennial candidate but it hadn't worked. >> doesn't feel that way. if you're 31-year-old you can go for bernie, way of upsetting the apple cart with hillary. i was with clinton, very confident. they'll say we're not confident. then they're totally overconfident for the next 15 minutes. no problem, we can lose iowa and new hampshire we have a fire wall magically in south carolina but dubious about that. if you lose the first two primaries don't you have a real race on your hands.
>> it is. if the independents do, what you say they're going to do, sounds like you think more will end up on the democratic side? >> i don't know. that's one of the rubio or christie or something could be surging kasich, doesn't feel. >> but susan what that does to the republican electorate, it becomes more conservative. that's like a winner for trump and cruz. >> but look at -- of course they're going to democratic side. look how negatively they view hillary clinton, negative 27 points in the favorable ratings you just showed. why is it bernie sanders running this inspirational 60-second closing ad that has no voter information, it has no issue. >> i know. >> pictures of americans looking happy and cheering bernie sanders. that is -- that's the kind of inspirational message that gets independent voter to think that's the campaign i want to vote for. they can decide at the last minute. >> the way you described bernie in a positive way, no information. trumps the same thing. he doesn't give a lot of it.
it's proof that hillary clinton and jeb bush, i think, have put out the most paper, the most detailed plans, and voters don't care. >> you know, hillary clinton doesn't have -- she hasn't given us a vision of what that's leading toward, right? a lot of different data points but you don't have anything that wraps together to understand it. that's what's hurting her on the message front. with bernie sanders, i mean, it's all like belief in change and hope. it's all of the stuff. democrats, doesn't matter how many times we get our hearts broken we always want to fall in love again. >> i'm watching this from afar, sanders is a policy-heavy guy. >> he is. >> but on health care, for example, you see the problem with hillary clinton, she picked a fight with him she wants to defend obamacare because she wants to wrap herself in president obama's mantel in the debate. as a progressive, her position is obamacair, a lot of compromises, passed in 2010, five, six years ago, that's great. we can't touch that. sanders is -- i said
intellectually coherent position, that was fine then. now the next step, which is expanding medicare, maybe to medicare for all. and i've got to say, if you're a progressive and hear that, that seems like a reasonable thing for the next. diddic president to do. hillary clinton's position, next democratic president will preserve gains of the previous democratic president. >> susan, what's interesting, i can take everything bill said and replace progressive with conservative, right? it's like cruz and trump in some ways are feeding them utopian conservative view of either the confrontational wing of the party right and the ones that are trying to make the pragmatic, like john kasich will saying you can never deport all of these folks, sounds like almost like hillary clinton saying you know you can't get this passed -- >> we need to work on retirement. who's having more fun? trump is having fun. sanders is having fun. >> totally. >> hillary and the rest of the republican field, bush, the rest of them, are not having any fun. which campaign would you like to be associated with? if you're an independent voter not tied to one party or the
other, where are you going to go. >> south carolina i heard from friends, bernie sanders was pretty popular when he walked into the fish fry. >> among african-american voters you're going to see a generational split. >> yeah. >> the same way you see it in other demographic groups you might see the split start to percolate. we'll pause here. talk on the republican side in a few minutes. stay with us. next, who, what, where, when, why and some of today's headlines when governor rick snyder could be heading to capitol hill over flint's water crisis. why blend in with the crowd? why shy away from the extraordinary? why fit in, when you were born to stand out? the 2016 nissan altima has arrived.
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i have had like over $20 million spent attacking me. that is money from the establishment. >> it's mostly that. that was marco rubio pushing back hard against the idea that he has become an establishment guy after ted cruz tried to slap the label on rubeio and trump. >> right now the washington establishment is abandoning marco rubio and made the investment that marco can't win this race and the washington establishment is rushing over to support donald trump. >> rubio unleashed on cruz at a town hall in new hampshire. >> ted has had a tough week because what is happening is people are learning more about him. he voted to cut defense spending. he was in favor of legalizing people here illegally. i saw ted cruz on the floor of the senate flip his vote on an issue. he is not who he says he is. >> let's bring back the panel. you are chuckling.
why are you chuckling here? i always thought that the weekly standard radar should be a rubio voter. >> they are slightly to rubio to cruz and don't like trump. cruz and trump are very different people. i think this is setting up most likely to be a three way race between trump, cruz and rubio. i think rubio is being overly discounted. ultimately it is youtube yo aru there has been $20 million of ads against him. no one else has been attacked at that level. you have to think it would be natural that his vote gets suppressed a little. >> what strikes me here is that rubio's decision is to go after
cruz. it goes back to the theory which is cruz is the real threat to the rest of the -- because if he gets off the ground in iowa just the calendar is in his favor, the base is in his favor and you see how it builds up and he has a pretty good financial organization. it seems that everybody thinks cruz is the better target for now. >> cruz is the necessary target for now. if cruz wins in iowa he launched in a way that maybe makes him impossible to stop or you have set up a trump/cruz contest with no room for anyone else. if you can get rid of one or the other cruz you are likely to knock off then there is opening to some alternative to trump. although it is kasich's only path and bush's only path. >> i was going through this earlier today about all the different campaigns through the years where there was this if we finish third in iowa then we
launch. if he finishes third in iowa he got a couple of days and then dole crushed him. the only one we can come up with in 40 years where finish third in strategy work was michael. >> the money starts to move, voter intention moves and it starts to go. i still say i can't see because immigration being such a big issue in the republican primary how rubio makes it all the way to the end. >> my same question with jeb . the immigration issue you just can't overcome it with this base right now. >> i think rubio will have a better shot of him doing it than jeb did because he is an attraction candidate. look at the numbers. it is good to step back. if you lose iowa by two points behind --
>> step back and look at the base of favorable. you would say trump has dedicated by a lot. you have to give trump a ticket to the finals. cruz and rubio have impressive numbers either are impressive candidates. you get those two talented politicians, trump and that is the finals. >> as you know there is only so much oxygen in our business. when you have two competitive races in both parties you get a couple of stories out of iowa. we know whatever happens between sanders and clinton is a story. is there room for the third story? >> especially true when you have very interesting insurgents doing well. >> two stories, republicans can handle -- >> they have a greater --
>> you get the last line. >> look what happened to ben carson everyone started to covering him and then he has no way to come back. >> what a fun panel. we will bring y'all back maybe tomorrow you will be snowed in. "with all due respect" starts right now. i'm mark halperin. >> and i'm john heilemann. >> with all due respect to donald trump i'm not just a president, i'm a member. good evening from the water street cafe in new hampshire and happy national hugging day sports fans. mark? who is definitely not hugging, donald trump and ted cruz. these numbers are just out from cnn, donald trump leads cruz 37 to 26. last night cruz