tv Meet the Press MSNBC January 31, 2016 11:00pm-12:01am PST
i'm chris matthews. thanks for watching. this sunday, the iowa caucuses. the candidates have had their say, now it's time for iowa voters to have theirs. can donald trump win here and just simply start to roll? >> i don't even think i have to campaign anymore. why am i even wasting my time? >> can ted cruz beat trump and turn this into a two-man race? >> the time for all that media noise is past. this is your time. >> what about marco rubio? does he finish second and become the chief challenger to trump? >> you see some deceitful things going on in the last minute. >> ted cruz, marco rubio and rand paul are all with me here live. plus, what will the latest e-mail story do to hillary
clinton's chances? >> i never sent or received any e-mail marked classified. >> can bernie sanders pull the upset and end the idea that her nomination is inevitable. >> they're going to throw everything they have at us. >> sanders joins us this morning. i'm chuck todd in des moines, iowa. joining me here for insight and analysis are tom brokaw of nbc news, jennifer jacobs of the des moines register, joy-ann read of msnbc and david brody of christian broadcasting network. cruz, rubio, paul, sanders, the candidates are all here. we're going to do our own caucus. welcome to sunday and a special edition of "meet the press." from des moines, iowa, this is a special edition of "meet the press" with chuck todd. good sunday morning. they're here. the iowa ku kcaucuses. it all happens tomorrow night. we're here in des moines at the
west end architectural salvage, a coffee shop that also sells custom and vintage furniture. and of course the candidates are here, all here, all over iowa selling themselves. in fact, on this last full day before the caucuses, the 13 candidates campaigning in iowa are holding 38 events making last-minute pitching hoping iowa will become the first step on the road to nomination. we couldn't be more excited or heavily caffeinated. stay tuned for our christmas eve of politics. we start with the latest bloomberg poll. put it up on the screen on the republican side, trump with a five-point lead over ted cruz, marco rubio in third at 15 and ben carson still in double digits at 10 with rand paul at 5. and the democratic race it's hillary clinton continuing to hold a nor row three-point lead over bernie sanders 45-42. we got a lot to get to this morning. the latest developments in the hillary clinton e-mail story, bernie sanders will join us later. marco rubio and rand paul are standing here at west end salvage, but we begin with senator ted cruz from texas by his own admission needs a win here in iowa to keep the trump
campaign from being in his word, unstoppab unstoppable. senator cruz, welcome back to "meet the press.." >> chuck, good morning. good to be with you. >> your campaign i take it doesn't believe the des moines register poll. you believe you're ahead. what i found was interesting if you add up the other candidates that are going after evangelical voters, ben carson, mike huckabee, rick santorum, they're 14% if you add it to the 23% you'll be the runaway winner here. is ben carson going to cost you iowa? >> listen, at the end of the day this race was always going to come down to do conservatives unite. ten months ago you and i visited right at the outset. if you'd told me ten months ago that the day before the iowa caucuses we would be in a statistical tie for first place, i would have been thrilled and astonished. and we are thrilled and astonished. the question is going to come 36 hours from now, do conservatives come together? in past cycles what washington has always wanted is to splinter and divide conservatives. if that happens -- >> you're worried about that a little bit. >> i'm always worried about it. the only way i know how to run -- there's the only joke, two ways to run, scared and
unopposed. the only way i know how to run is scared. and we're going to run hard every minute. you know, tomorrow we're going to complete the full grass. we will have been to all 99 counties in iowa. we are campaigning one after the other asking for the votes of the men and women of iowa and focusing on the grass roots and ground game. >> you believe if trump wins here he's unstoppable? >> not necessarily -- >> well, you said it. our friend caught you on tape there. >> actually, what i said he could be. that iowa his winning here would give him momentum. no doubt about it. he's in a strong position in new hampshire. and the people of iowa if they want a strong principled conservative, the people of iowa can impact that powerfully 36 hours from now. monday night at 7:00 p.m. and, you know, i think the stakes are too high to get this wrong. you know, the most common sentiment you hear from people is they're frustrated with washington. they're frustrated with politicians. they say one thing and do another. we can't get burned again.
and that frustration, the reason that i see conservatives uniting behind our campaign is they're looking for a consistent conservative, someone they can trust to be a fiscal conservative, a social conservative and a national security conservative. >> at the beginning of this month you led in the polls. donald trump went after you, sometimes viciously, okay, on various things. and it seemed to work. the reason trump's ahead is his attacks on you. are you tough enough to take a punch? >> oh, listen, anyone that has millions of tens of millions of dollars of attack ads run against them is going to have an impact. >> will you be able to survive a race with hillary clinton? >> absolutely. >> it's going to be tough. this is just two weeks. >> listen, the fact they're all shooting at me -- six weeks ago everyone shooting at trump. now all the republican candidates are shooting at me. that reflects a change in this race. and i'll note, donald, you're right, six weeks ago donald thought i was terrific, i was his friend, he was singing my praises. then his poll numbers started dropping. our numbers started surging. and suddenly he began blasting
me, not on policy, not on substance but on personal insults and attacks. and, chuck, my approach consistently both before and after he started doing that is not to respond in kind. i think the people of iowa deserve better than insults. so my focus is policy and substance and record and who will be a consistent proven conservative. >> why did you suddenly stop going after trump on paid ads and going after in your campaign attack marco rubio? how concerned are you about senator rubio catching you here in iowa? >> listen, we are drawing contrast, both trump and marco are attacking me. they're attacking me with all their might. and we're drawing contrast. and the contrasts are clear. the contrasts by the way are substantive and policy based. a vote for marco rubio is a vote for amnesty. a vote for donald trump is a vote for obamacare. if you look at their positions, marco rubio right now is a presidential candidate is advocating amnesty, advocating citizenship for 12 million people here illegally. and donald trump right now as a candidate is advocating full-on
expanding obamacare to make it socialized medicine. donald trump and hillary clinton and bernie sanders have the identical position on health care, which is they want to put the government in charge of you and your doctor. now, my views are polar oppos e opposites of both of those. if i'm elected there will be no amnesty, we will secure the border. if i'm elected we will repeal every word of obamacare. so that gives a clear and simple choice for the voters. >> let's talk about two issues here that seem to be potentially tripping you up here in iowa. one is ethanol. you are -- have come out against these subsidies. you've called it a grave ri train. a lot of iowans including the republican governor doesn't like it. i'm going to put these numbers, isn't it understandable why iowans like these subsidies. ethanol and biodiesel support more than 46,000 jobs, generated $2.5 billion for iowan households, a state with unemployment under 4%. this is an important part of their economy. >> absolutely. and, listen, my view on energy we should pursue all of the above. we ought to be pursuing every
energy source. >> you'll be hurting their economy. >> but with no mandates and sub di u -- subsidies. the people attacking me are lobbyists and democrats. his son is a lobbyist who makes hundreds of thousands on lobbying ethanol. his family makes a ton of money. the lobbyists very much want to keep iowa focused on the ethanol mandate because it keeps iowa dme dependent on washington. means every year they have to go back to washington and maintain the mandate, lobbyists get paid, politicians get paid. no subsidies for oil and gas, no subsidies for anybody. but the other piece that's very important and resonating is i'm going to also tear down the epa's ethanol blend wall, which means make it legal to sell mid-level blends of ethanol. and that in turn can expand ethanol share of the marketplace by 60% but not based on mandates and subsidies based on the free market. >> it's so clear you spent a lot of time in iowa look at you
talking about mid-level fuel sales. at the end of the day, how does this not hurt the iowa economy? that's what governor branstad is saying. a vote for you is going to hurt the economy. >> but, chuck, the point i made this actually would expand the iowa economy. right now ethanol is banging into the rfs. it's essentially the blend wall is a cap. as people in iowa knownprv as i traveled around and do town halls, ethanol's not expanding its market share because the epa is preventing it from doing it. by the way, no other candidate has pledged to remove the blend wall. no other candidate is focusing on the future for ethanol. and you know someone who joined me on my bus tour across the state, fellow named dave vandergrind, he built more than half the ethanol plants in the state of iowa. he's the one who estimates you could see a 60% market increase. you know who's hurt by my plan? the lobbyists in washington and the people who are helped are iowa farmers and jobs here in the state of iowa. >> one final question, you talk about ronald reagan a lot. you talk about you want to sort of have a presidency like his. he famously had a terrific
relationship with democrat tip o'ne o'neil. he got stuff done. are you and nancy pelosi going to be able to get stuff done? >> absolutely. >> how? >> in my entire time of the senate i've treated every member of the senate with civility and respect. >> i don't think mitch mcconnell would say that. >> as others attack me, i don't respond in kind. when donald trump calls me a canadian anchor baby, i don't respond with an yun insult. in fact, i'll sing donald's praises. i like donald. i think he's bold and brash. i think he's been too willing to get a deal and grow government and support cronyism, but that's a policy digs tings. at the end of the day why was reagan able to change the country? because he built a grassroots movement that reagan revolutioned that turned this country around. that's what we're doing. we've got 12,000 volunteers in iowa and it's all about turnout. if conservatives want a principled conservative to not get burned again, they need to come out monday night 7:00 p.m.
>> i'm going to leave it there. senator cruz, you have to finish the full grassley. my next guest florida senator marco rubio under sustained attack from the cruz campaign in recent days. in fact, take a look at this ad they put out on rubio's immigration stance. >> i am not and i will never support, never have and never will support any to grant blanket legalization amnesty. >> marco rubio was part of the gang of eight trying to secure amnesty. >> one of the architects of the plan senator marco rue yobio. it was marco rubio a member of the gang of eight and ted cruz that wasn't. >> and senator marco rubio joins me now. senator, welcome back to "meet the press." >> thank you. >> you just had a nice friendly hug with senator cruz there. that's not such a fraeiendly ad here. it goes to the issue of the gang of eight. >> actually -- no, no, let me -- >> can you explain the issue of amnesty? define amnesty? >> the ad is deceitful, actually
talks about cap and trade, it stops my statement right when i start explaining that i'm against cap and trade and big government mandates. the gang of eight was a bill that was -- that's not -- that was dealt with three years ago as an effort to fix our immigration laws. it was the best that could be done in a senate controlled by harry reid at the time. the hope was that the house would take it up and make it better, but it was a way to start that. in the absence of progress that's how barack obama has now forced on america not one but two unconstitutional executive orders that seek to actually legalize people here with no enforcement. now, that's not the way we're going to do it when i'm president. when i'm president, when i'm the nominee, we're going to keep our majority in the house and senate and we're going to pass first and foremost immigration laws that secure our border. and until that is in place, we're not going to be able to do anything else. that's the lesson of the last ten years. the american people we do not have the political support to do it all at once. they do not trust the federal government to enforce immigration laws. and as a result the key that unlocks the door to make
progress on illegal immigration is to bring illegal immigration under control first. and we will do that when i'm president. >> i've had a lot of republicans in iowa that i've talked to who really like you and then they say why won't he repudiate the gang of eight? >> that's not how we're going to do it when i'm president. that's not going to be the law that we'll pass -- >> do you regret ever being involved? >> look, i tried to fix a problem. this is a real problem. where are we today? we are worse off today than we were five years ago. we have more illegal immigrants here. we have two unconstitutional executive orders on amnesty. i went to washington to fix a problem. immigration is a serious problem. it impacts my state and the state that i live in. we are impacted by illegal immigration in a dramatic way. this issue has to be dealt with. each year it gets harder to solve, more difficult to solve, but it is now clear more than ever before that you are not going to be able to do anything on immigration until you first bring illegal immigration under control and prove it to people. not just pass a law that says it and that's how we're going to do it when i'm president. >> you have eluded to the fact
that majority is not yet sort of where you might be on what to do for instance with the undocumented. do you think this is what's holding your campaign back? that the difference between third and second or third and first for you is your immigration position? >> no, look, we had 11 people running for president that are running competitive campaigns. 11 people on the ground in iowa spending money, campaigning, working hard themselves to gain voters. so a lot of this is segmented right now. ted cruz is clearly the front-runner in iowa. he has 10,000 volunteers, spent millions of dollars here, got every endorsement he wanted. so we always knew that going in, but we feel really good about the progress we're making here. we have taken on more negative attacks than every other candidate combined. jeb bush's souper pac basically spent a third of its money attacking me and yet we keep growing and feel positive about it. we feel positive about what it's going to mean monday night in iowa and new hampshire. >> you brought up the cap and trade issue. i'll play the full quote of what you said. >> florida should position itself for what i believe is inevitable and that is a federal cap and trade program. florida should do everything it
can to be an early come plier so it can access early compliance funds and help influence what that cap and trade looks like at the federal level. so i'm in favor of giving the department of environmental protection a mandate that they go out and design a cap and trade or a carbon tax program and bring it back to the legislature for ratification some time in the next two years. >> all right. we gave you full context there. >> no, you didn't. there's more after that clip. >> we'll explain. >> no -- >> it does come across as you're saying it's inevitable so florida has to prepare. >> but what you just played is not the full clip. right after that i said i'm not in favor of implementing it. i'm in favor of them bringing it back to the legislature. i do not support big government mandates. the context of that that was in 2006 and '07 when the leading candidates for president were john mccain, barack obama, hillary clinton. all three supported cap and trade. and i was the speaker of the house and i said there is a chance that the federal government will pass cap and trade. i'm not in favor of it. but if they do, we have to be prepared to comply with that requirement even if we don't like it. and i don't want it to cost the
state of florida money to have to comply. everyone knew it. the democrats knew that position. when charily christ proposed cap and trade, i was the first person to speak out of it in a full op-ed in the miami herald. right after that there's even more. >> this gets at what sort of i think is the challenge for all of the candidates on both sides is you're basically saying, look, you got to sometimes govern with what you have, not with what you want. >> right. >> but the voters they want more than that. the voters seem angry. they're not satisfied with this idea that, you know, you're doing the you got to work with what you have in washington, not with what you want. >> you know, i don't think that's true. i think voters understand to solve problems it's going to take the ability to work with people you don't agree with on a bunch of other issues. i think people understand my higher education ideas, i think student loan debt in america is a huge problem. we're not going to have free college, but i think there's a bipartisan way to work on helping with student loan. that's why i work with mark warner on it and worked with other people on this sort of
issue. there are issues that we're not going to agree on. repealing obamacare, that's why we have elections. so i think if there's a chance to work together and you don't have to betray your principles, you work together. but there are issues where you can't do that. that's why we have elections and debate and all those sorts of things in america. >> why are you the personally most popular republican candidate, pretty much here, you and ben carson here neck and neck, but overall nationally you have the highest favorable rating. why aren't you higher? >> again, i think it goes back to the fact there are now 11 people running for president of the united states, running competitive campaigns. i mean, these are not third-rate candidates. these are former governors, ceos of major companies, serious people. and former senator rick santorum. and they're campaigning hard. so you've got the voters have a lotd of choices. i think once the race narrows i feel pretty good about our prospects. >> that's the question a lot of your donors, where do you -- >> i'm running for president of the united states. >> but you need to win eventually. >> we will. here's how we win, we win by having more delegates than
anybody else u anyone else and more than half the delegates. i'm confident we're going to achieve that. i don't think you're going to really get clarity on this race until the race narrows a little bit. >> what's a good night for you tomorrow? >> we want as many votes as we can. we feel real positive about what it's going to lead to. that expectation game for us we always knew we were an underdog in iowa. other people have a lot more people on the ground here, they spent more money, but we're going to have a good night. i'm excited about it. >> senator rubio, be safe on the trail. i think we'll see you in new hampshire as well. when we come back, are iowa democrats ready to vote for a 74-year-old socialist who's not even a registered member of the democratic party? we're about to find out. senator bernie sanders joins me in a moment.
welcome back. it's hard here in des moines to turn around and not bump into a journalist. we have tom brokaw, jennifer jacobs, msnbc national correspondent joy-ann and david brody. david, i'm going to start with you because, look, ted cruz is make or break depending if he pulls -- but it's uniting evangelicals. >> it is. you touched on it in that interview. ted cruz goes around in all of these campaign stops and says we need if you're going to vote for ben carson, nice guy, but please don't. it goes on, mike huckabee and all these folks. if you actually add the numbers
up, ted cruz runs away here in iowa with it. the problem is is that not only does he have to contend with the fact others will vote for carson and huckabee and others, donald trump is taking 19% as we see in the latest poll of evangelicals which i know is shocking for folks an excedrin moment for folks. >> we're trying to get a feel of who the trump people are, cruz people, we've put a compilation tor together of the voters i've spoken to. >> i'm for ted cruz because our country was founded on the bible and the constitution. >> if we ged ted cruz in there, they're going to start getting in line and doing what we need to get done. >> my second choice would be marco rubio. >> reporter: how do you feel about donald trump? >> i watch his show. but i don't know -- i'm afraid of what he might do once he's in office. >> reporter: why are you caucusing for trump? >> because he's going to make america great again. >> i think everybody's a little bit afraid. americans are afraid, the world is afraid. >> i hope he's tough on illegal immigration like he says. >> i believe he can keep our
country safe. >> he is not politically correct. and i am fine with that. >> reporter: would you be caucusing if he wasn't running? >> probably not. i've never caucused before. >> reporter: how long have you lived in iowa? >> 49 years. >> there it is. buffalo bill hat guy there, he has lived here his whole life and has never caucused. and he's a donald trump -- that's who donald trump needs to show up. are they going to show up? >> well, you never know. it's interesting to me that ted cruz has all the high points in this des moines register/bloomberg politics poll. everybody likes him better than donald trump. they think he has the greatest knowledge and depth of experience. but donald trump is the guy that they think would be best to fight the u.s. enemies. and that's a big deal in this race. so, you know, everyone says that donald trump's organization is suspect. but people really have faith in him right now. >> and i think you can see, too, donald trump also has the most loyal backers. if you look at the polling, he's got the most unchangeable voters. they are sticking with him.
that's why i think you're seeing more intramural fighting particularly between cruz and rubio because rubio's are among the least adherent. so i think what you're seeing with ted cruz is he's trying to not only take away the ben carson supporters but also go after those rubio supporters for whom he's actually the number one second choice. >> it's interesting, tom, put up the favorable ratings from jennifer's poll here. the des moines register. the two most popular people, republicans, are the guys running third and fourth, ben carson and marco rubio. the guy in first is the least favorable of our top four, donald trump. it goes to the point, it's loyalty but not growth. >> it's loyalty within the republican party and within different portions of the republican party. i really think that a big piece of what donald trump has going for him is celebrity culture that we live in in america. and he is everywhere and comes in with that big airplane and people say i'd like to have a little piece of that. here's a guy running strongly among evangelicals married three times, he had affairs around the world with other people, he went broke a couple of times.
they bore right through that. so we're playing in a different ballpark this year. >> well, it's a good point. i would say this, there's a huge block of evangelical voters that are the sick and tired evangelical voter, this election specifically those folks are ruling the day. you know, evangelicals are sick of being played as political pawns for years. i mean, look at the federal marriage amendment in 2004, if i can go back in history but george w. bush campaigned on that, told evangelicals to get out at the polls and karl rove dropped it like a hot potato. they believe donald trump will stick up for them. >> david, explain this, we were talking about this earlier. who -- is it a different evangelical voter that's for trump than -- is it different -- explain the difference. you were telling me there's a difference between the trump evangelical and the cruz ev evangelic evangelical. >> there is. there's a nuance there. first of all we know evangelicals are not a monolithic group. >> of course not. >> but a lot are identified evangelicals. i'm not trying to get on anyone's case, if you will, but look, the reality is is that
there's a certain type of evangelical that votes for donald trump, a little bit more of a cultural christian if you will. but then there is the bible study, wednesday night service, you know, the ones that you're going to see at the potluck on sunday, that's the ted cruz folks. >> that's your cruz. >> those are the cruz folks. but look, the reality is donald trump is still playing well with even some of those folks that go to service on wednesday night. he's crossing into both realms. >> last word, tom. >> you have to keep track of who loses here. where do those votes go? that's going to be critically important. three or four people drop out, 40% of the vote they represent, where do they go when it comes to new hampshire? so losing is as important as winning here. >> that's what iowa's all about, losing sometimes. and then winning. anyway, we're back in a moment. we're going to talk about the democratic race and the man who has defied all expectations. forget trump, let's talk about sanders. he's upended hillary krclinton' expected march to the nomination. senator bernie sanders of vermont joins me next.
never caucused before to turn out tomorrow and put him over the top. if they do likely so signal a new beginning for the nomination. senator sanders joins me from cedar rapids, iowa. thank you for joining me, sir. >> my pleasure. >> let me start with the importance of winning fsh your candidacy. is there a path to the nomination without you upsetting hillary clinton here in iowa first? >> well, chuck, let me just say this. as you well know, when we began this campaign, we were at 3% in the polls. we were 50 points behind hillary clinton. today as you've indicated we're neck and neck. i think we have a real shot to win this if there is a large voter turnout. and it's not just young people. it is working class people. it is middle class people who are sick and tired of status quo politics. that's true in iowa. it's true in new hampshire. it's true all over this country. so to answer your question, yeah, i think we really do have a path toward victory because
people want to see this country boldly move in a new direction so that not all wealth and income is going to the top 1%. >> but don't you have to win iowa here if this is going to become a big national campaign? >> well, there's no question, you know, that what happens here is very, very important. and if we can win and pull off a major upset, it will really be a springboard, i think, to other states. but at the end of the day i think in terms of division of delegates, whether you win by two points or lose by two points not going to matter a whole lot. but here's the point, we are running a national campaign. erer strong not just in new hampshire. we're gaining ground significantly in south carolina and nevada. we are strong all over this country. >> i want to play for you something secretary clinton said friday about your health care ideas and get you to respond to it. here it is. >> i don't want us to be thrown back into a terrible, terrible national debate. i don't want us to end up in
gridlock. people can't wait. people have health emergencies can't wait for us to have some theoretical debate about some better idea that will never ever come to pass. >> senator, i would say the biggest difference between her supporters and your supporters is her supporters will say, you know, i really like what senator sanders is trying to talk about but he can't get his plans passed. that's essentially what secretary clinton is saying. what are you saying? >> well, first of all, what secretary clinton has implied throughout this campaign or last month or two that somehow i who spent my life fighting for universal health care to guarantee health care to every man, woman and child, to have the united states join the rest of the industrialized world in making health care as a right. somehow i'm going to dismantle the health care system and leave millions of children without health care, or elderly people without health care. that is absolutely an outrageous and incorrect statement. of course that will never happen. at a time when we are spending
three times more per person on health care than the people in the united kingdom, far more than the people in other countries, we pay the highest costs for prescription drugs than the people elsewhere, yes, i think our vision is to move forward to guarantee health care to every man, woman and child in a cost effective way. >> but obviously to pay for it, and to pay for a lot of your ideas, you're going to be raising some taxes. nancy pelosi, head of the house democrats said this. we're not running on any platform of raising taxes. it was an implied sort of she didn't want you at the top of the ticket with those house democrats. what do you tell her? >> you know, chuck, let's just look at the facts. the facts are that we are spending far more than other countries on health care. my proposal will save middle class families thousands of dollars a year on their health care costs. most people tell me, yes, they would be happy to pay $1,000 more in taxes if they're paying
$5,000 less in health care premiums. so, you know, this is an issue where we have got to control health care costs, guarantee health care to all people and do what every other major country on earth is doing. we have got to take on the drug companies who are ripping us off and the private insurance companies. >> and you don't think you're going to be a problem for house democrats who don't want to run on raising taxes? >> no, i think in fact hillary clinton will be the problem. because i think our campaign is the campaign that is generating excitement and energy that will result in a high voter turnout. republicans win when voter turnout is low. democrats win when voter turnout is high. i think our campaign is raising the issue about a rid the economy of corrupt campaign finance system. secretary clinton yesterday just announced, i suppose with pride, that her super pac brought in $45 million. i don't have a super pac. our average contribution is $27. >> i want to ask you about your
relationship with president obama and a book you endorsed. president obama, the most popular democrat in this des moines register poll. there is a book by bill press, it's called "buyer's remorse," how obama let progressives down. your name is featured as sort of the top endorser of the book. it says bill press makes the case, dot, dot, dot, read this book, in fairness to you, the dot, dot, dot doesn't have you saying anything negative about barack obama but simply signing on this book. >> chuck, what it has me saying is what i believe. in that the next president must be extremely aggressive in bringing more people into the political -- i think barack obama has done a fantastic job. >> he hasn't let down -- you don't believe he's let down professi progressives? you think bill press is wrong? >> no, i think president obama's done a fantastic job. the economy today is infinitely better than it was seven years ago. but=&y# what we have got to doo
involve people in the political process in a way that we have not done. the reason that the rich get richer and everybody else gets poorer is big money controls what goes on in congress. the antidote to that is a political revolution involving people in the political process. and that's what the -- go ahead. >> fair enough. the latest revelations about secretary clinton and her e-mails, do they give you any -- you personally any hesitation about her electability or about her honesty? >> well, here's the issue. you know, as you well know, chuck. and i've been asked every day, you know, by the media, attack hillary clinton, attack hillary clinton. what i've chosen to do in this campaign is to focus on the issues facing working families and the middle class. and not make personal attacks against hillary clinton. you know, i think this is a serious issue. i am not going to attack hillary clinton. the american people will have to make that judgment. but i am going to continue to
focus on is why the middle class continues to disappear. and we have massive levels of income and wealth inequality and a campaign finance system which allows billionaires to buy elections. >> senator sanders, i got to leave it there. stay safe on the trail. it's going to be a fascinating 24 hours. thanks very much. >> thank you. coming up, the issue that has haunted hillary clinton more than any other this campaign season, did the e-mail problem just get worse for her? and what does it mean for iowa democrats on monday night?
welcome back. as you already know tomorrow iowa voters will select candidates through the caucus system. not a primary. but what exactly is a caucus? we're here with your complicated answer. caucuses are held in places like schools, churches and government buildings. and it's where voters gather and show up in person to select their candidate. at one of over 1,600 precincts across iowa. but in iowa republicans and democrats caucus very differently. so let's start with the republicans. it's easier. they show up to their caucus location and simply cast a secret ballot for the candidate of their choice.
delegates are awarded proportionally based on their overall statewide vote total. pretty straightforward, right? it's basically an old fashioned firehouse primary. now, if only it were that simple for the democrats. first, there are pitches from representatives of each candidate. then voters move around the caucus site, let's say a high school gym, and gather with like-minded supporters. clinton supporters in one corner, sanders backers in another, o'malley folks in a third and something called undeclared, they meet as well. but, for example, if martin o'malley, who is pulling the lowest, can't seef at least 15% at this site, his supporters can go to another candidate or become undeclared. by the way, this works the same for the undeclared if they don't get 15%, they have to choose among those who did meet the threshold. this all continues until only viable candidates with at least 15 support or the undeclared group if they have 15% support
remain. >> by the way when you're watching the raw election returns tomorrow night, we'll get raw numbers of actual votes on the republican side and you'll see hundreds of thousands on the democratic side. it will only be a few hundred or a thousand or two because what you'll see is adding up of local delegates, it's a little bit confusing. you'll just have to wait for somebody to say so and so won, so and so won when nbc news declares it. hopefully we can say you can take it to the bank. we'll be back in a moment with the latest on the clinton e-mails.
and we are back. panel is back. tom brokaw, jennifer jacobs, joy-ann reed and david brody. start a little bit, i also talked to a bunch of democrats at various clinton and sanders events. let me give you a taste of giving their case for why they're passionate or pragmatic. take a listen. >> i like a lot of what bernie says, but i think it's more realistic to go with hillary. >> reporter: did you caucus eight years ago? >> yes. >> reporter: who did you caucus for then? >> barack. i felt the charisma of obama much more so than hillary at the time. >> reporter: what about hillary this time makes you feel better? >> the competition. >> going to start for o'malley, if he's not viable then we will probably go to bernie. >> reporter: what takes you from clintons?
>> probably too much establishment or something. >> bernie talks about the big banks. and she's taking money from them. >> i think that at the end of the day when he's sitting down thinking about what he's going to do, he genuinely cares about me. >> i like what sanders says because with the gun laws make sense. >> yes, you didn't mishear. that young man is undecided between bernie sanders and ted cruz. only in iowa. you can't make that up. what was interesting there is you did get a taste from the voters that there is the democrat that is thinking about -- democratic voters thinking about who can get the job done, that seems to be a hillary person. then there's some idealism with the bernie folks. but your poll has a totally different story on this idea of enthusiasm. bernie sanders talks about his people are more enthusiasenthus. look what your poll has. you have clinton people with more enthusiasm. >> it's true. they like her best for her strength and preparedness. that is true. in the bottom line argument is he has the empathy and vision, however the conventional wisdom
is he has more enthusiasm not true. our poll shows that she is winning on who would you be more enthusiastic as the nominee, she wins. and especially on the very enthusiastic, which is that really strong, strong passion. she gets 53% saying they will be very enthusiastic about her, only 49 for him. >> boy, there is nothing in this poll that indicates sanders is going to win unless these first-time caucus goers search. >> the metrics for her are certainly better going into the caucus. but i think the reason you're seeing the bigger turnout and the more visible passion for bernie sanders, his candidacy really represents the two big disappointments of the progressive wing, the most liberal wing of the democratic party have to do with number one, no prosecutions of wall street bankers after the great recession. and number two, the fact that there was no public option or universal health care in terms of like a medicare for all. those two pockets of resistance to the obama years are driving the bernie sanders moment. it's driven by an anger at barack obama. but the challenge is you're
running essentially to succeed the democratic president. so if you're saying we need to repudiate the administration's policies on bankers and on health care, what you're repudiating barack obama. it becomes very difficult to get barack obama supporters to support you. >> the guy with the 90% favorable rating higher than both those current democrats running. >> well, what's been missing from the democratic side however is what is the international policy? what are they going to do about isil? we're in a war. and there's been almost no discussion on the democratic side. i asked bernie sanders the other day, he all to the landscape but clearly didn't have an idea how he would deal with what's going on in the middle east. it's almost all at this point very domestic. and so in the iowa caucuses tomorrow night, democratic caucuses, we'll have three candidates and then the fbi investigation. >> well, you bring up e-mails. republicans are excited about the e-mail story, right, david? >> they want to start the general election now. absolutely. >> they love it. does it impact democratic voters? >> our polling has showed, no.
it doesn't effect them. >> i don't think it's there yet. quite honestly i think it will be there but in an unspoken way. but is it an explosion or is it a fizzle? that's the part -- >> well, the line in the "new york times" story about this that i think stands out most to democrats is the information was not classified at the time it was sent. so long as that is the case, democrats are dismissing this issue. >> i think bernie sanders could do a lot more damage to hillary clinton not necessarily bringing up the e-mails, the specific e-mails, but bringing up authenticity, bringing up establishment, bringing up here we go again. you know, this narrative that has already formed on hillary clinton, if he can continue to tap into that it might be different. >> isn't the issue -- it's interesting here. has bernie done enough to beat her? he does seem to be like he doesn't want to go everywhere. look, barack obama, he didn't have any qualms about going after those trust issues, turn the page. he went right at her. >> but hesitancy i think because of that same issue. for democrats this is not a change election.
this is 1998, this is the attempt to continue the obama legacy and protect it. hillary clinton has a much easier argument to make. wrapping her arms around the president saying i will protect his legacy, bernie has to say i want to fundamentally change to overturn obama legacies. >> they fire back really hard saying he's playing dirty and promised not to campaign negatively and he kind of stepped back again. >> bernie sanders reminds me a little of howard dean 12 years ago. >> uh-oh. >> we're out of momentum on this program on sunday morning, kim, me, roger simon and others said looks like howard dean's going to pull it off. oops. then he's third. and a distant third at that. so there was an enormous amount of excitement around him that matches bernie sanders. >> i talked to another gentleman in mt. pleasant wlo said i think this area's going to go for sanders. i said why do you think that? he said the bernie people are louder. the clinton people are softer. and that's what he took. but that goes to your dean. the dean people were louder in
'04, but that didn't mean there were more of them. >> that's true. real quick, on the enthusiasm polling you showed there it's interesting. they're more enthusiastic for hillary clinton as the nominee. >> that's the key. >> as the nominee. in other words, yeah, we'll be enthusiastic we want the white house back. that's the issue. >> yeah. there's also a drive they want a female president as well. 80% of democratic caucus goers want a woman. >> 69% would be comfortable with a socialist. by the way in iowa. we'll be back in 45 seconds with an end game segment and surprise guest, senator rand paul will join the panel. we'll be right back.
end game time. joinings us now senator rand paul. we wanted to squeeze in more candidates. >> thanks for having us. >> well, what happened? i feel like your libertarian support was strong here when the year started. >> we still think it is. you know, we have 1,000 precinct chairs out of 1,600. i think that's more than any other candidate has announced. ed young people in our des moines office, if you get there there's 100 of them or more making phone calls. they've called a million iowa voters. i think we've called them so much we know them by name now. but we think we're a lot stronger than the polls represent. our strength we think is with the younger voter. i've yet to meet a college kid or kid out of college that's done a presidential poll. the polls are skewed older. >> do you think you and sanders
are fighting for the same voters? >> in some ways. i mean, you know, he's evinced a little distrust of the bigger banks, we think the biggest bank in the world is the culprit for economic despairty. >> what's been disappointing to me on the republican side is there's been almost no sophisticated discussion about how we're going to deal with the war in the middle east. there's a lot of talk about the veterans. that's after they've served. they've come home badly wounded in many cases, psychologically and physically. but there's been no discussion about in a sophisticated way about how we're going to deal with what the consequences are. and no call for a sacrifice on the people who are at home. we have less than 1% of our population in uniform and in harm's way. >> well, i think the most important thing if you want to try to get to a point where we do defeat isis, it means you have to have a cease-fire in syria. so for those who are saying let's bomb both sides, let's just call them john mccain, wants to bomb both sides of that war, so does rubio, they want to bomb assad and isis at the same
time. i think that's a real mistake and won't lead to a solution. to those like hillary clinton and rubio and others who say they want to have a no-fly zone over there and shoot down russian jets. i mean, christie's bragging about shooting down russian jets. i think that's a naivete that will lead to more problems and not make the world safer. >> senator, i think you could say represented by the chris christie crowd, does it surprise you they have so much resonance? >> i think it's interesting. des moines register did a poll probably about a year ago and said do you support more intervention in war or less like rand paul. it was pretty evenly split. we think there are quite a few voters out there who are still war weary. we also think has regime change worked? i think toppling hussein made iran stronger. i think toppling gadhafi made radical islam stronger in libya. so i think there's a large argument and i think we're winning the historical argument
that toppling secular dick tato in the middle east has actually made it more dangerous and not safer. >> jennifer. >> your father got third place in iowa 20%. do you think you can get anywhere close to that? maybe our poll isn't reading some of your supporters. >> the interesting thing about your poll you ask in one of the last polls who did you vote for in 2012 and i think you got like 9% or 10% for my dad and he got 22%. so you're really only finding half of his voters. i don't think it's on purpose. i don't think your poll is finding them. i think the poll is not finding young people. it's also not finding independent voters that come and go in the republican primary. i think we're going to be -- we're going to surprise a lot of people on monday. >> you know, i'm curious about the libertarian aspect of all this. when i go to trump rallies see a lot of libertarians and i'm wondering about that crossover appeal and if that's hurt you at all. >> i think most libertarians or libertarian leaning people like myself, we don't want to make the sand glow or carpet bomb the middle east. we understand if you have indiscriminate bombing over there you may create more terrorists than you kill.
i think voters are consolidating. i think at the fed was a defining moment for ted cruz not showing up for that moment, it's going to hurt him with us losing any liberty voters to him. i think also ted is sort of wanting to have it both ways particularly on the nsa. you saw his response in the debate to rubio. rubio said, oh, you voted for the nsa reform, you're voting to weaken the nsa and ted responded, no, i want the government to collect 100% of your cell phone records and it's like the liberty voters we cringe when we hear people like ted cruz saying they want to collect all of our records. we don't want the government in the business of collecting our phone records. >> what do you got to do on monday night that says i'm going to new hampshire? >> i think we have to be above expectations. and we have to do very, very well. i've said that from the very beginning. you know, we've been sort of pushed out of the news cycle a little bit if you haven't noticed. >> it happens. it does happen. >> there are a lot of candidates out there, but we have to exceed expectations and we have to do very well in iowa. but, you know, we're already moving up. we're fifth in the des moines register poll consistently, but
we think it might be -- we might get twice as much as what's in there, three times as much. we think we can do much better than expected. we think we even have another chance of winning. >> what happens to the people who don't survive here in iowa? where does their vote go when you get to new hampshire in your judgment? >> you know, i'm not sure exactly what happens. there are going to be four or five people that, you know, are not going to do very well here. i don't think christie, kasich, fiori fiorina, i don't think they're going to do well in iowa. i think they move on because they think they'll do better in new hampshire, but i think after new hampshire and iowa there is a reshuffling of the deck. >> there's a place called -- this is one of the most popular ones coming out of iowa. this is the one i support the crazy one. >> whoever it is. >> not attaching a name to it. >> thank you all, senator paul, thank you. we'll be back next week from new hampshire. but we got coverage all day long today, tomorrow. don't miss it. if it's sunday, it's "meet the press."