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tv   Morning Joe  MSNBC  March 18, 2016 3:00am-6:01am PDT

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as it becomes more and more inevitable trump will be the republican nominee, people have been wondering who donald trump's foreign policy advisors are going to be. he finally told where you say he's getting his information from yesterday. take a look. >> who are you consulting with consistently so you're ready on day one? >> i'm speaking with myself, number one, because i have a very good brain and i've said a
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lot of things. [ cheers and applause ] >> this is crazy, but we have the technology to look inside his brain. it's fascinating to see how it works. look at this. >> he referred to my hands, if they're small, something else must be small. i guarantee you there's no problem, i guarantee you. >> why isn't it working? >> let me try! [ laughter and applause ] >> that's well done. good morning, everyone, it's friday, can you believe it? right. >> yeah, it means so much more these days. >> it's big. we've had a long week. so joe's in austin this morning performing at south by southwest. >> playing his guitar? >> it's going to be awesome. >> pretty amazing. the whole band. >> watch out for the whole band. all nine of them. more on that later. with us on set, former communications director for president george w. bush, nicolle wallace. former treasury official and "morning joe" economic analyst steve rattner and donnie is here along with willie and me.
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>> and then there's a turn in the punch bowl. >> donny is here. it's all so contrived. >> i like the double estrogen hit on this side of the table here. i've never seen this before, have you? >> have you ever been on the same side together? >> we have. >> i view it as two smart people sitting over there going to take you down, my friend. >> very well played, willie geist. >> i'm just going to sit here and wait for him to screw up even more. keep going. anything else you like? >> no, i'm just happy to be here. >> good answer. double estrogen hit? >> yeah. sounds like something you can get -- [ laughter ] >> well, we're beyond that here. the republican national convention opens in exactly four months from today. that's four months for a band of party regulars who remain determined to stop donald trump from gaining its nomination to
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enact their plan. in downtown washington yesterday, conservative activists met privately to devise that plan. they settled on calling for a unity ticket, though who it would consist of remains unclear, leaving options open to a former candidate or someone who did not run. they encouraged all former and current candidates to hold their delegates on the first ballot at the convention and pledged to keep their options open as to other avenues which could include a write in campaign in the fall. trump recently suggested there could be riots if he is not nominated, which one of the leaders of the group, erick erickson, eluded to in an interview and drew rebuke from house speaker paul ryan. >> in 1860, abraham lincoln, it took him three ballots to become the republican nominee. if he can do it without riots in the street, the other candidates should be able to do it as well. >> nobody should say such thinges in my opinion because to even address or hint to violence is unacceptable.
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>> and then meanwhile politico reports speaker paul ryan met with conservative megadonors in florida last night. and while politico sources say the meeting isn't intended to be about trump, among two dozen in attendance were new york hedge fund manager paul singer and chicago cubs co-own er todd riks who are investing heavily in the stop trump campaign. in his press conference yesterday, pryian said it's increasingly likely we're headed for a contested convention and maintained he is still neutral in the presidential battle and will never be a candidate. >> in the event that no person running for the republican nominee right now gets enough on the first ballot that you will unequivocally not put yourself forward? >> it's not me. look, i didn't think i made news, i thought i was pretty clear, to be candid with you. i saw boehner last night and i
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told him to knock it off. [ laughter ] i used slightly different words. i used his own words that he used to use against us when he told us to knock things off: it's not going to be me. it should be somebody running for president. look, i made a decision over a year ago not to run for president. i really believe if you want to be president you should run for president. people are out there campaigning. they're canvassing, there's caucuses and primaries. that's who we should select from among for our next president on whatever ballot we're talking about. my goal is to be dispassionate and to be switzerland, to be neutral and dispassionate and to make sure that the rule of lau prevails and to make sure that the delegates make their decision however the rules require them to do that. >> nicolle, the press is really, really, really trying to get paul ryan to run for president. i don't know how many ways he can say it differently. this stop trump movement, you have a lot of money guys, smart
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people getting together, they ul want to stop trumps, they have hashtags but at the end of the day they need a candidate. >> can't just have hashtags? you need somebody to run the race and defeat donald trump. is that person out there? >> well, there were 17 of them. the stop trump movement has been robust and litigated and the people didn't settle on the people that the hashtag movement folks wanted. they settled on -- i guess you can't call them a majority but a plurality settled on donald trump so i may have the least in common sort of with his platform, whatever it may be, but i have the most sympathy for the case he's making. he's the person they're voting for and this all just reeks of the same arrogance and denial that brought them to this place. and if this sort of state of denial is a cycle, no one looks like they're ready to break it. if they want to break the cycle,
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they should go out to the country, get out of washington and understand why people are voting for them. >> the reality is, the more the stop trump movement is out there, the more it feeds into his brand. the more the establishment, the elite point out there and say "no, that's not your candidate" people say "no, it is our candidate." >> so maybe the argument, steve rattner, is "let trump be trump." >> i talked to one of them yesterday. i don't know that they're clearly thinking about what the options are. things like writing in a candidate, they don't understand what would be on involved to try to get on ballots if they were to run a third party candidate. there's a lot of confusion and disorganization. at the end of the day we know there's nobody except trump who could possibly get to the convention with a majority of delegates. number two trump will be the one who gets with the most delegates, it may or may not be over 1237 and i don't know if there will be riots and i don't want to encourage riots, i'm not even sure that trump does, be the idea that the convention is going to reach down to somebody
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who came in a distant third yet alone reach out into nowhere when you have a guy with 45%, 47%, 48% of the delegates, it's surreal. >> let me stay on the riot for a long time, i've known donald a long time but i disagree with his politics. he has to stop with the punch and the riots. >> from knowing him is that what you know of him? i'm going to his left brain. it's the right strategic move also. it's time to pivot. at this point even if you can't do it from your soul, do it from a strategic point of view. somebody will get killed at some point. this is my -- i'm still stuck a week ago, i know you guys have talked it ad nauseam on the kid getting punched by the hillbilly. my stomach hurt. >> i totally agree with you. >> it was the first time i got back and forth -- >> thank you for saying that. >> it made me sad, it made me frightened, it viscerally affected me and i said donald as
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my friend, dude, this is where it stops. this is where you have to say, hey, i'm this, i'm this, i'm this but at the end of the day i'm a father, a grandfather, i love my country." >> i want people to be safe at my events. >> if you are the leader, that presidential, if you're that strong, a strong man says no and i have the power to stop that from happening. >> and if i could add some demographic politics, he's almost maxed out sort of the anger vote and if he wants to grow now -- >> strategically, yeah. >> it's time to get the moms. no mom wants to see their kid at a trump rally. i have a friend in seattle and denver that like him but they would never let their kids go to one of his rallies for fear of what might happen to them. >> on paul ryan, didn't he say those exact words -- maybe alex could pull it later -- about being speaker. just saying. >> he would be the only in ne
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theory. >> it's different now. he is the speaker. >> i'm just saying. >> i'm wondering if a guy like that wants to race his bullet on running for president on a spoiler race. >> he doesn't. >> he's too young. >> maybe he's not saying in the a way that's convincing it in the media. >> because he said the same thing about being speaker. >> he doesn't want to be written in on the second and third ballot. >> and you can't win. >> this is an interesting twist. senator lindsey graham has made no secret he's a fan of neither donald trump nor ted cruz. >> he's definitely said that. >> he once quipped choosing between trump or cruz is like choosing between being shot and poisoned. >> ooh, okay. >> well, now he's faced with that choice. yesterday senator graham announced he will back ted cruz. here's a look at how senator graham picked his poison. >> would ted cruz be a more acceptable nominee than donald trump? >> no. >> no? >> you're in trouble, my man. >> he's going to get killed.
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when i think of problem solver, the first thing in my mind is not ted cruz. if you kill ted cruz on the floor of the senate and the trial was in the senate nobody could convict you. [ laughter ] i'm not really happy about where the country is right now. our party and our country is going to have to up its game. if you nominate trump and cruz, i think you get the same outcome. you know, whether it's death by being shot or poisoning, does it really matter? we may be in a position where we have to rally around ted cruz as the only way to stop donald trump and i'm not sure that would work. >> you'd recommend that in order to stop donald trump? rally behind ted cruz. >> i can't believe i would say yes, but yes. so i think the best alternative to donald trump to stop him from getting to 1237 is ted cruz and i'm going to help ted in every way i can and if i were in one of the states coming up in terms of voting and i didn't like
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trump, i'd vote for cruz. >> that was the whole journey right there. >> and a ringing endorsement. >> he's been through so much. >> clearly this is not about him liking ted cruz, this is about him trying to stop donald trump anyhow anyway and he thinks ted cruz has the best chance. >> that's the confused tortured reality. >> but can i say at least he's picking of someone before. the weakness of the stop trump movement and what romney did is there's not a political example that you can point to where anyone achieves success by coming out against somebody. so at least lindsey -- and lindsey is a skilled truth teller in times of despair for the republican party but at least he came out and was for somebody. i think it's surprising and i think in part it's because cruz went 0 for 5 tuesday night there weren't more establishment endorsements for cruz or kasich for that matter. >> the only way i think for the party through this is to back cruz, as distasteful as that would be for everyone. kasich can't get near there. >> unless they think that would be a worse outcome in november.
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>> cruz? >> and there are some who think that. >> well, there are some who think that but i think there are a lot who think that at least cruz is "a true conservative" and you have that part of them. >> and marco rubio came out and said ted cruz is the only true conservative left hinting maybe he'll come around behind ted cruz as well. >> elizabeth warren has made some news this morning, we'll get to that in a moment. first, the "new york times" is reporting on what the paper calls unusually candid remarks by president obama regarding the democratic primary race. the "times" writes: "president obama privately told a group of democratic donors last friday that senator bernie sanders was nearing the point at which his campaign against hillary clinton would end and that the party must soon come together to back her." that's a quote the president's comments were summarized for the "times" by three people present at the event and were later confirmed by a white house official. but then here's what white house press secretary josh earnest had to say about the report at his
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briefing yesterday. >> president obama made a case that would be familiar all of you which is that as democrats move through this competitive primary process, we need to be mindful of the fact that our success in november in electing a democratic president will depend on the commitment and ability of the democratic party to come together behind our nominee. the president did not indicate or specify a preference in the race. >> why was that so saturday? because i don't think he was actually completely coming to terms with what happened. he obviously did.
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he obviously did. and, by the way, this is what people hate about washington. just, you know what? no comment, tell the truth but don't do that. that's like a very light version of why we're dealing with donald trump because he's at least out there -- >> in a strange way is it almost better for hillary if bernie stays in the race keeping her sharp, like a team that gets -- >> possibly. >> if she's anointed -- that was the problem everybody had with her initially going in, it's a coronation. whereas you're going to have this republicans in the knife fight for the next three or four months and if hillary is already sitting on the throne -- >> the president is going to back hillary, they have a deal, he ought to keep it closed for a while, but he has it. >> but do you agree it's better for hillary -- because she's going to end up with the nomination. >> i don't know how far left she gets. >> respectfully, i don't know if i agree with that. >> by the way, only human being ever in seven years that said respectfully. >> well, joe's not here so i have to channel joe.
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>> with all due respect. >> jane, you ignorant shut. >> it's so early, come on. >> i think hillary wasn't anointed, she did go through a set of primaries, some of them were tougher than others, she's won the last five of them. >> that's my point. to continue that. >> but why? i think in the past many nominees have become the de facto nominees by the middle of march and she's done that and i think her preference should be now to get on with -- >> her priority should be to reach out for disaffected republicans. there there have never been more. whether it's cruz or trump there will be people for whom cruz is too conservative, there will be people for whom trump is too crazy and i think it would be to her advantage to focus on picking up center right voters, not fighting with bernie sanders. >> so the president was trying to nudge people in the right direction without saying inini nudged people in the right direction. >> well, the president was in a
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closed door fund-raiser. >> there's no such thing as a closed door. >> so josh earnest was left in a position of dancing around the truth which i can show you another version of that but what i think is really happening here is that elizabeth warren might be trying to negotiate herself a very good position in whatever the clinton administration might look like. senator elizabeth warren was asked yesterday about hillary clinton's paid speeches on wall street. now you'd think the answer to that would be crystal clear, right? elizabeth warren? should hillary release the wall street speech? of course she should. right? >> that's what she said, right? >> got to be. take a look. >> do you believe that senator clinton should release the transcripts of her speeches to goldman sachs? >> look, i think that our candidates are out doing what they should do in a primary. they are debating the issues. >> you're not answering the question, senator. >> what i'm doing is telling you what i think should be going on right now in this election. >> well, just a yes or no question, it's a yes or no
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question. should she release the transcripts or not? >> i told you i think the primaries are doing what they should be doing and the candidates are being tested. [ laughter ] >> oh, mika, you must be so depressed. >> that's your girl. >> i think she's going to be veep. there must be something in play here. that was obviously dancing around the topic so i hope you get something good. >> well, you just let josh earnest have it for dancing around the topic so let's have -- >> i am, in a back handed way i'm saying she was completely circumventing the question. i'm not sure i would have continued the interview and you guys know that i'm good on that. but that was no answer. there must be some negotiation under way. i hope it works out really well because we need her. still ahead on "morning joe," from the committee at the center of the fight over the supreme court, senator amy klobuchar joins us, plus congressman steve israel who's walking away from washington after nearly two decades.
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if you're in austin, catch joe and his band at austin city limits. >> i hate to say this, i don't like joe at all. i saw him two weeks ago, he's really good. he's not very good on the show: >> a lot of people say that. >> blew me away. i was shocked. i was ready to throw tomatoes. >> willie and i saw him in des moines and i thought he was good. >> so they're playing at the renown south by southwest festival tonight at tomorrow at 8:00 p.m. so everyone should go. now to bill karins for the check on the forecast. how's the weekend storm looking? >> a little better meerksika. yesterday afternoon we got the european computer model in and we were like here we go, game on. yesterday they were saying six to 12 inch snowfall for all of new england to philadelphia. thankfully overnight they changed. these are models, not the actual forecast. so it shifted with only snow in eastern portions of new england, very light amounts from d.c. to philadelphia and minor around
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new york so that's good. our american computer model agrees that with eastern areas of mass and maine around plowable snow and a nuisance snow around i-95. so the roads may be wet or slushy, it will only accumulate on the grass. the other story, we have storms down here in areas of florida. yesterday we had a significant storm that rolled through around 8:00 to 9:00 a.m. around the dallas-fort worth area. it produced epic hail and a lot of damage was done to the roofs and windshields. this was big enough to smash some of the windshields off on these cars. this was 8:00 or 9:00 in the morning so pretty rare to get a big significant storm like that that early. so the weekend forecast looks like this. today watch out for severe weather texas to louisiana late today. then tomorrow the rain and storm will be in the southeast. it moves up the coast on sunday and, again, it may snow. you'll probably see snowflakes in d.c., philadelphia and new york sunday but a lot won't be accumulating during the day. it's after we go to sunday night
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that areas in eastern new england will have the best chance. we're still about 60 hours away from that event so models could flip-flop again. we'll keep you update. new york city looking at a gorgeous friday. no problem whatever today or tomorrow. we'll watch that storm. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. ♪jake reese, "day to feel alive"♪ ♪jake reese, "day to feel alive"♪
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>> you're a republican. >> that's right. >> if donald trump is the nominee, the republican nominee, will you vote for him? >> sue van, i'm not going to answer. don't ask that. >> in your book, it's clear you don't think islam hates america, that you don't think all muslims should be banned from entering the united states. is there a point where you would feel compelled to come off the sidelines to speak against proposals like that? >> this is what i want americans to remember, what our real values are. and one of the very first things, one of the reasons we're a country is because we believed in freedom of religion. >> that's former first lady laura bush there speaking out by not speaking out on donald trump saying "don't ask that question." she is such a wonderful, gracious woman. >> she's so lovely. >> one issue driving the vote
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this election cycle is trade. exit polls showed us once again on tuesday that's the case in ohio and north carolina. the majority of republican voters believe trade negatively affects u.s. jobs. a similar story on the democrats' side although voters from north carolina are more divided on whether trade creates or hurts american jobs. steve rattner has some charts to better explain the role trade is playing in this election, how bernie sanders and donald trump are benefitting. steve, what have you got? >> just to start with the polls. to start from your exit poll numbers about the benefits of trade, and trump won those voters is basically the bottom line, both in ohio, a state he lost, as well as in north carolina. he did extremely well among those voters and so did bernie sanders. so they are appealing to people who feel trade is hurting us. but let's look at both sides of trade and start with the benefits of trade because trade does help the country as a whole. i don't think most economists would disagree with that. estimating the benefits is a little bit hard but there are numbers around the $300 billion to $500 billion range, putting
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that into perspective, that's about -- that could be as much as a thousand, the two thousand dollars for every american that they're better off because there is a trade. we have a huge number of jobs tide to trade. 20% of all jobs relate to trade and it's not just in things you might think about like manufacturing but service jobs and things have an export component to them. and then most importantly the benefit that all of us at this table and many of our viewers see is in lower prices so things that we don't make here very much anymore are much cheaper because they can be made less expensively elsewhere. tvs and computers down 70% to 85%. furniture down 7%. with toys and computers there's a technology element, but with furniture, bedding, toys, it's a matter of people making them less expensively elsewhere and we get the benefit in lower prices we paid. but there are problems with trade and particularly with both jobs and wages. so if you start with jobs you can see that over the last 15
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years we have lost over 70% of our textile and apparel jobs. so if you want to understand what was happening in north carolina and south carolina in those primary votes you can -- you should see how many textile workers don't have their jobs anymore. if you want to get an idea what was happening in michigan and ohio you can look at autos. ohio is the second biggest auto state after michigan where even with the auto recovery, even with the good stuff that's happening with cars, we're still 30% fewer jobs than we had 15 years ago in the auto sector. and then it also affects wages and if you take a look at this wage chart, you can see that since the beginning of the recovery, wages for people in the economy as a whole have risen about 2.5% after adjusting for inflation. people in service sectors, financial services, information, education, hospitality and leisure, even the low-paid service jobs and hotels and things have all seen their wages go up a little bit.
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who's seen their wages go down? it's been people in manufacturing and down 2.5% -- sorry, down .8% and in the auto industry down by a staggering 12%. so if you want to understand why people in these places, especially those working class white males that we talk about a lot are disaffected, they have a good reason to be. >>, we and also, isn't this -- everyone is so concerned what about exactly is drawing people to trump, is this one very legitimate reason why trump could go do well in those places that you mentioned. >> when you talk about putting up 35% tariff barriers, when you talk about forcing companies to make things in america again, that appeals to people who basically think they lost their jobs because these other countries competed with us and took our jobs away. >> what's the impact in reality, though, putting up a tariff like that. >> it would be disastrous. it would be totally disastrous. here's the irony of this whole
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thing, and maybe nicolle won't like this answer. here's the irony. the republicans to some degree create their own problem. >> really? never heard that before. >> but the republicans for the last seven years have basically blocked any kind of policy action, any kind of initiative, many of which obama has proposed that would have made the lives better for these people who are now very unhappy. so it's boomeranged. >> the failure isn't a policy failure, the failure is republicans don't have an eloquent rational relatable advocates for free trade so the party is devoid of people who can talk about how trade benefits your life. everyone can have those products that were on your list because of trade. there are no add cats and, frankly, if it's hillary versus trump there will be no debate about the benefits of trade. >> i don't think you can sell the benefits of free trade right now when you have so many individuals and so many key states who are hurting. i think what we should have done -- >> but it's pandering to their fears. there are benefits of free trade. this is part of the crackup of
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the republican party. it no longer has a candidate in convention who's an advocate for free trade. >> but if you look at the exit polls, for people who believe free trade has helped us, john kasich wins those. >> obviously john kasich doesn't have a lot of voters. >> because there's not a powerful defender of the benefits of free tranchtde. >> the republican party would have been better off if we had done something over the last 10, 15 years too help these people. >> and if there were someone to communicate about the larger benefits to their lives. >> and that's been donald trump's big hit on john kasich is that he voted for nafta and look what happened in ohio. >> same hit on hillary. >> basically john kasich has been measure bud he's been saying what you want him to say. you have to understand there are benefits from free trade. >> but if somebody thinks they lost their job because of it, all the benefits in the world won't talk them out of it. coming up, the must-read opinion pages. plus, a lot of people waking
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up to busted brackets. if you picked yale to go on -- i did -- you probably went to yale if you chose yale to win. i didn't, sadly, didn't get in. "morning joe" will be back in a moment. ♪ for your retirement, you want to celebrate the little things, because they're big to you. and that is why you invest. the best returns aren't just measured in dollars. td ameritrade®. aren't moving in the right direction,bers it can be a burden. but what if you could wake up to lower blood sugar? imagine loving your numbers. discover once-daily invokana®. with over 6 million prescriptions and counting, it's the #1 prescribed sglt2 inhibitor that works to lower a1c.
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if you have a chance to get it into prince's hands you, do otherwise you go far. >> finish, turns it over, march magic for the yale bulldogs. >> two seconds left.
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[ buzzer sounding ] that will do it. >> faker. whoa! >> that's a jam. >> inbound. wide open! >> disbelief for the trow janse. >> hagan dribbling it out. it looks good. hagans go to the basket, puts up a shot and ties it again. double overtime coming up. he missed it. edwards at the buzzer, no good. little rock is moving on! >> little rock beating purdue yesterday, just one of the upsets in day one of the ncaa tournament, a big bracket-busting day. you saw a pair of number 12 teams knock off their fifth ranked opponents. university of arkansas little rock outlasted purdue in double ot and the ivy league outdoes the big 12 as yale wins its
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first-ever tournament game, beating baylor in the bulldogs' first appearance since 1962. yale hasn't been in the tournament since 1962. the baylor forward had one explanation for the 79-75 loss. >> how does yale outrebound baylor? >> you go up and you grab the ball off the rim when it comes off and then you grab it with two hands and you come down with it and that's considered a rebound. so they got more of those than we did. >> i love that guy. i love that guy. >> that was awesome. >> everybody talks about these are such upsets. in the last two years, number fives versus number 12 opening round 8-8. so much is just seedings. >> that was so funny! >> something about yale, though, never having been there. yale outrebounded baylor 36-32. we saw two 11 seeds beat sixth ranked teams. gonzaga heads in after pulling a win over seton hall. i had seton hall in the final
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four and wichita state shocks arizona 65-55 in round one. as you can see here, arizona coach sean miller really feeling the heat during the game against wichita state. just drenched in sweat. >> well, he's busy. >> he had to change his shirt at half time. >> i have some of those nice see through, i think that's what that is. >> donny deutsch collection. >> mental image, i just threw up in my mouth. please stop. what's next, willie? coming up next, we know what the candidates think about a possible contested convention, but what about the people who make it snap ari melber talks to rnc insiders. can this thing happen? ari will tell us next. vo: know you have a dedicated
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how fast is it? plenty fast. but it's not how fast you mow, it's how well you mow fast. it's not how fast you mow, it's how well you mow fast. it's not how fast you mow, it's how well you mow fast. ...it's how well you mow fast! ...it's how well you mow fast. even if it doesn't catch on, doesn't mean it's not true. the john deere ztrak z535m with our reengineered deck to mow faster better. to find out more about the accel deep mower deck, go to johndeere.com/mowwellfast >> the media has created a perception that the voters will decide the nomination. political parties choose their nominee, not the general public, contrary to popular belief. >> then why bother holding the primaries? >> that's a very good question.
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>> the delegates are not bound, they're free to vote their conscience on all issues before the convention and the nominations. >> if i was dead set right now on preventing donald trump from being the nominee of the republican party and i myself were a republican, it seems i would be putting my effort into making sure i knew who was going to be serving on the rules committee that is going to set the rules for the convention a week before it starts. >> well, you're absolutely right. of course i think that work is going on right now. >> that was a member of the rnc rules committee on cnbc and late we are chris says suggest suggesting the fate of the nominee rests firmly on the hands of the republican insiders, not the voters. joining us now, msnbc chief legal correspondent ari melber and in washington chief white house correspondent for politico mike allen. ari, you have been talking to a dozen rnc insiders on the rules committee about a possible contested convention. what are they saying?
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>> we have a new report debuting right now here on "morning joe." we spoke over a third of the standing committee on rules, this is the rnc folks who write these rules, they do the first draft, as we just heard that other member mention because he's a member of this committee, they send it to convention rules committee. what we're being told by these folks overwhelmingly is it is fine to stop donald trump at the convention: indeed, they say the rules have always allowed for that. here's what henry barber told us. "trump doesn't get a pass because he has a hundred more delegates than anyone else. if he can't convince a majority of delegates to vote for him, he won't be the nominee. the process is fair, it's been around for decades and we shouldn't change it for the head of trump university." but we also spoke to many who said that is true up to a point for whoever is left but you cannot go in and do the paul ryan option or the mitt romney option. indeed, out of the 19 members of the committee we reached, only three were open to that. here was the response to that
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idea that you would add in a candidate in cleveland. this is one who wanted to speak to us without their name on it but they said "you want to have a world war iii and destroy the party? then you change the rules drastically, you will have a problem, it will be a hotly contested convention." >> but the rules do allow -- if he doesn't get the number, right? then what happens? >> that's the question. >> loses on the first ballot. >> typically on the first ballot everyone is bound. there's something called rule 16, it's considered a permanent rule. if you come in with 45% support, those delegates support you and, indeed, under the current permanent rules if anyone breaks ranks on you, if f someone tries to drop from donald trump they're de-delegated. their vote wouldn't count. then you have on the later ballots in a thicket of rules that relate to what we're talking about, rnc rules plus state rules where people are bound or unbound. what you heard curley haugland say, he has a minority view
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that's more extreme that the delegates should only decide, primaries shouldn't mean anything. but i want to be clear, what we're hearing from the insiders who have been thinking about this, on rules committees at prior conventions, people go back to 1976 when you did have balloting when ford had to beat back reagan. they're saying the establishment idea, the stop trump idea that you would bring in someone, paul ryan or anyone else, they're saying that's dead on arrival. we've heard a lot of speculation in washington from some establishment types who don't like donald trump that that's one way to stop him. they're saying they won't allow that if they have any input. ultimately it's the second rules committee rat the convention that decides on that rules package, they can open it up but they need support to do that. >> they have to be very careful. >> i remember learning in my high school civics class about presidential elections, it's not the voters who decide, it's old curley haughland who picks the president. [ laughter ] >> so we get through the first ballot, everybody's bound, on the second ballot, what happens
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in? is the cruz campaign going around to these individual delegates and making their case? how does it work? >> if past is precedent, and as i say, several rnc members i spoke to say past should be precedent. some say if it's open we can do anything we want. if past is precedent it's not like anything can happen, it's other names on the ballot, the rule decide what they are and so then if, for example, you only allow trump and cruz on the ballot and trump didn't clear on the first ballot if he was only a bit short he might, but if he doesn't clear, yes, you have to most intense jockeying. think of the money and the energy and the intensity in this entire campaign, it would all boil down to getting those delegates and you can do that through any lawful means of persuasion cape persuasi persuasion, cajoling, legal threatening. >> one distinction. what they said, the 13 out of 16 who sid no way on an outside candidate, is that from a rules point of view or their point of view point of view? there's a distinction there because all bets are off on this thing. >> correct.
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>> so that's why it's one thing if it's law, which it's not. the law is on the first you're bound, after that -- so i'm going to be somewhat -- >> and there are no laws, donny, this is just rules. >> rules. so i'm going to say even though they're saying that, to me i think in this cycle all bets are off. >> i think your question, the premise of your question goes to why this is so fascinating and so uncharted. we spoke to several rnc rules members who said, well, we'll do what the rules allow. we'll do what the rules allow. well, they write the rules and the convention committee has the final say on the rules so, yes, the rules can say anything. one more point on procedure because we all love procedure. the convention delegates can vote by majority to suspend the rules at any time. so unlike an election that is controlled by a government that has some overseeing, that if you're in a state that's the secretary of state, that i check the boxes, make sure there are certain things that have fallen. uh-huh. this is a private meeting at the end of the day. if a majority wants to do something, they can do it. >> in the words of belushi in
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animal house "food fight." >> it's going to be wild unless trump can get the majority before we get there. >> and there's a presumption that trump will be terrible at this. the presumption of the conversations that they had is that trump would not and could not outorganize the cruz camp or the kasich camp. i think it's another example of the establishment's arrogance when it comes to trump. he has as much potential as the rest of them in playing and gaming these rules. >> and willie i would not underestimate donald trump. our reporting suggests he has a team in place ready, he has a lawyer at jones day and the political law practice. >> who works on this stuff all day everyday. >> a former fec commissioner. the donald trump campaign has a public message about these things and they have proven to be very shrewd about actually having a backup plan. let's get to mike allen for a different angle on this election, politico reporting that many vulnerable house republicans are planning a head in the sand strategy when it comes to donald trump. reading from the piece, politico
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interviewed a half dozen lawmakers in tough reelection races, once who have perhaps the most to fear about trump as their general election standard bearer. their plan, in a word, is to ignore him, disregard the racket in the presidential race and keep it local. whether voters will do the same is another matter, but they're playing the hand they've been dealt. few republican lawmakers were comfortable discussing trump. some would not even utter his name. mike, conventional wisdom is that donald trump will kill republicans down ballot in these races. does it work to just ignore the guy? can you ignore donald trump? >> no, willie. and what we're seeing in this story, read between the lines and you see in the stages of trump grief for republicans the move toward acceptance: in this story kevin mccarthy, the number two house republican pointing out that excitement about trump may actually turn out voters, increase turnout. we've seen people in the senate side saying that turnout could come up. so these house members are
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saying, yes, we can run along with them and, willie, some fascinating research that's going on in d.c. and this is going to be one of the most argued over and courted groups of voters in america. senate candidates are trying to figure out who are those voters who would be a trump no but would be open to voting for a republican senate or house member. so a lot of your traditional republicans. both sides will be targeting those people and right now there's research going on to figure out who those people are, what they look like. another story up on the top of politico saying that the trump opponents dazed and demoralized. willie on the show the other morning you were saying all these stories about a secret meeting to stop donald trump had almost turned to parody and that's what we're seeing. they realize they're too late, that they're out of time and so that this is more part of moving toward how do we work with donald not try to have some
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fantasy that he's not going to be there. >> mike, there's been some report too in the last couple weeks that senate republicans, those running for reelection, have been privately given permission to run against donald trump. do you think we'll see that? >> some of it. in a state, for instance, rob portman in ohio in a tough race, kelly ayotte in new hampshire you can see them doing that but they are going to recognize the problem of other members of the republican field. remember what joe used to say about old timmy tebow, all he does is win. and these powerful numbers that are turning out from donald trump, he's on track to get so close to that delegate number in cleveland. these candidates are going to be as reluctant as presidential candidates were to run against him. that's why we're getting the head in the sand strategy. >> all this discussion is simple, it will come down to the republicans. do they want donald trump or hillary clinton? because trump will stand up,
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rightfully so, people chose me, i'm running which means we're giving it to hillary, decide. would you rather have hillary or me? end of discussion. >> donny deutsch, thank you. >> hapy friday and happy weekend. >> i cannot believe it's friday. coming up, she's stumping for hillary clinton, pushing a supreme court nominee and packing her bags for cuba. senator amy klobuchar has a full plate and she joins us just ahead. n be. oh no this mom didn't have time to worry about a cracked windshield. so she scheduled at safelite.com and with safelite's exclusive "on my way text" she knew exactly when i'd be there. so she didn't miss a single shot. (cheering crowd) i replaced her windshield... giving her more time for what matters most... how'd ya do? we won! nice! that's another safelite advantage. thank you so much! (team sing) ♪safelite repair, safelite replace.♪
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president obama is set to become the first sitting president to set foot on cuban soil in nearly 90 years. starting monday, the president plans to visit old havana's cathedral to meet with cuban cardinal jaime ortega, credited along with pope francis to encourage relations between the united states and cuba. he'll attend a much-anticipated baseball game between the tampa bay rays and the cuban national team. the president will deliver a speech expected to be broadcast live on state tv. ahead of the trip, the white house says the first flight carrying the first batch of u.s. direct mail took off for cuba. included among the parcels, a letter from president obama to 76-year-old elena yarza who has written him before inviting him to share a cup of cuban coffee with her. the trip is not without deep controversy, federal reserve members of the president's own party, who wanted a greater emphasis on meeting with
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dissidents. we'll have complete coverage monday morning including chris jansing live from havana. coming up, arizona is the next big battleground as the presidential race heads west. a live report from tucson ahead of tuesday's vote. and we'll be joined by feebsnbc andrea mitchell and howard dean joins the conversation. plus, disgust over the water crisis in flint, michigan, spills into the u.s. capitol. we'll be right back with much more "morning joe." ♪jake reese, "day to feel alive"♪ ♪jake reese, "day to feel alive"♪
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check this out. first up, as a child his family moved six different times but he kept finding them. next, in high school he went to prom with the lunch lady. at the end of the night she said she just wanted to be friends. i didn't know that. hi microwaves cod in the office break room just because he likes the smell. he was so cool in high school at lunch the other students gave him a table all to himself. that's how cool he was. he used to have an imaginary friend until it ran off until his imaginary girlfriend. >> that's so sad. that's kind of mean. >> he's just not a well-liked gentleman. >> it ee's not true, he's reall nice. i met him. i think he's quite shakespearean. >> why do his colleagues hate him? >> because he did that shutdown thing. >> lindsey graham loves him. >> oh, yeah, lindsey endorsed him.
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welcome back to "morning joe." it's friday, march 18, joe is in austin today. guess what he's doing? >> playing the guitar? >> informing at south by southwest the festival, isn't that cool? >> can i give him another plug? i don't like joe, i don't think he's very good at this show. but i happened to see him a couple weeks ago, he's really good. it's bizarre. >> he has a nine person band, "morning joe" music. everybody in the band is amazing. >> it was funny. >> writes all the songs and performing at baby southwest at austin city limits. i was shocked, he's really good. >> with us on set we have obviously donnie, former treasury official steve rattner is here and in washington nbc news chief foreign affairs correspondent and host of "andrea mitchell reports" andrea mitchell. also former governor of vermont and former chairman of the democratic national committee,
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howard dean. great group on this friday morning. let's get it going. the republican national convention opens in exactly four months from today. that's not a lot of time. four months for a band of party relations who remain determined to stop donald trump from gaining its nomination to enact their plan. in downtown washington yesterday conservative activists met privately to devise that plan. they settled on calling for a unity ticket though who it consists of might be unclear which would be problematic. if you don't have someone it is again, steve rattner, like fighting obamacare saying "i hate it, we shouldn't have it but we don't a better idea." leaving options open to a former candidate who someone maybe ran that they encouraged all former and current candidates to hold on to their delegates on the first ballot and pledged to keep their options open to other avenue which is could include a write-in campaign in the fall. who would that be? >> steve rattner.
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>> yeah, right. >> ratner. eugene robinson writes in the "washington post," the gop stop trump movement is a pathetic joke. the stop trump movement in the republican party has been thus far a pathetic joke. the fecklessness of the whole endeavor was encapsulated by mitt romney's performance earlier this month. he told voters why they should not vote for donald trump but stopped short of endorsing an alternative. what did i just say, steve rattner? anyone disagree? >> can't argue with that. >> no. >> they have no other options. >> they have no options.
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>> so they're trying to figure out how to bend the rules. >> the reason they have no other options -- and i said this before the break -- is because it will come down to trump st d standing up, rightfully so, saying "look, i got 1200 or close, if you don't think the people should speak to me, i'll go on my own and hillary will get elected." >> i don't see how this ends well. >> ari melber just reported the rules committee, the people who make the rules, are not open to having an outside candidate come in at the last second so it will be one of the three people you get. howard dean, this allows donald trump to make the case to his supporters that, look, they're trying to steal the election from us, you voted for me, i won the states, i did what i had to do, i had the most delegates if not a majority, a plurality, bring them to cleveland and he can rightly say they're trying to take it away from us. >> the interesting thing about this is the majority of people who are putting donald trump into the lead in the republican nomination are probably not republicans. they are independent people,
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reagan democrats who've been voting republican for a very long time. there's actually a fairly significant crossover between bernie sanders and donald trump voters. and so to do this is to publicly alienate all these relatively independent-minded voters from the republican party. it's a disaster. if they're going to do it, they ought to go back to the smoke-filled rooms and shut up and not talk to the news. [ laughter ] >> so peggy noonan writes in the "wall street journal" "will the gop break apart or evolve?"
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andrea mitchell, that and trade and certain other kind of i think moments in our history in terms of where the people are might lead trump to everything that he needs to win this. >> i think there is a big crossover vote, i agree absolutely with howard dean. the fact is that hillary clinton is not winning white men and, you know, she won them 2008 because she was running, let's face it, against barack obama. so a lot of the angry white men, some of whom are chickly d econ disadvantaged and have lost jobs and are resentful, they were voting for hillary clinton for complicated reasons.
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those people are not with her so far in these primaries and for most of the primaries she's losing the white men to bernie sanders who's appealing to them on those very economic issues of trade that you speak of. and there's also the celebrity factor. and i don't think we should discount that. there's social media which is completely different just since four years ago to say nothing of eight years ago in terms of its expansion and penetration but also the fact that celebrity television whatever you want to call it is a much bigger deal and that donald trump has completely dominated all forms of media. >> andrea, it's donnie. obviously the white men is the vulnerability for hillary but that stunning commercial that the anti-trump ran yesterday with women kind of quoting back some of these -- >> things he said on howard stern, sure. >> as an ad guy i found it one of the most compelling pieces of communication i've ever seen. obviously the math in terms of hispanics and african-americans, particularly women line up so hard against him.
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how does he get past that woman hurdle where he's going to be facing that and then some? >> that's the big challenge because that ad is aimed not just at being against trump but at, look, it's aimed at the republican suburban women who have been the key to republican victories: when you see a gender gap as big as we could have in this matchup, if it is hillary clinton versus donald trump, this is the woman's vote that that ad is aimed at, exactly. >> if i was -- you were talking about this. how do you walk into that? because it's such a gut-level powerful truthful message. to your point, suburban women are the swing voters, a big part of them, how do you combat that if you're donald? >> well, hillary clinton is not winning independents. she's not winning independents, she's not winning young people, she's not winning, as i say, white men. so you go at her vulnerabilities and what he is hinting at is that this could be one of the
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nastiest campaigns we've ever seen in modern history. >> i think the women issue is kind of like -- might cancel each other out in terms of how ugly it could get. who knows, willie? >> senator harry reid lashed out at majority leader mitch mcconnell and congressional republicans over the obstruction of president obama's supreme court nominee and how their actions have fuelled the rise of donald trump. >> republican establishment acts bewildered, but they should not be bewildered. as much as they try to distance themselves from trump now, republican leaders are responsible for his rise. republican leaders created the drought conditions, donald trump has simply struck the match. a sort of punch first ask questions later leadership is what we've come to expect from donald trump. we know where he learned it. if senator mcconnell wonders from where donald trump came, he should take a look in the mirror. all the time donald trump was watching, watching. he saw rampant extremism condoned by republican leaders who were either too cowardly or
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powerless to do anything about it. so when trump calls immigrants rapists and murderers he's doing what he learned from generations of conservatives. the republican party has become without question the party of trump. for too long, some economists have tried to have it both ways, giving trump occasionally a slap on the wrist each time he says something detestable but always committing to support him at the end of the day. it's precisely the kind of moral cowardice that enabled the rise of trump. >> i think the problem here is that that's not going to work and i -- >> well, it's just not. >> i'm not saying i agree or disagree it with. everyone simmer down on twitter but your reaction and mine was the same. shaking your head. >> i think it's not really quite the facts. >> exactly. >> there's a lot you can say about the republicans but the idea that they somehow -- they're not the ones who have been talking about putting up walls. they're not the ones talking about 35% tariffs on imported goods.
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they're not the ones who have been at least vocally trashing the immigrants and they want to be rid of trump. you know, i would just repeat what i said before that i think the one legitimate point i think you can make about the republicans is they enabled trump by basically blocking for seven years any kind of productive policy out of washington so you have a situation in which congress has a 12% approval rate, most americans think the country is on the wrong track because we've not done very much and so they've helped create that problem. but i think the rest of it is a bit farfetched. there was plenty of finger pointing yesterday during a house hearing in the water crisis in flint, michigan. governor rick snyder testified the state's department of environmental quality repeatedly assured him that the water from the flint river is safe, this while the head of the epa gina mccarthy accused the state of providing it with unreliable information but ultimately conceded the agency didn't respond quickly enough. both leaders took lashings from
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lawmakers. >> i see responsibility. i see people that are getting fired. i see changes. i see an admission that there was fundamental wrong that happened within the organization. but then when i turn the epa, has anybody been fired? that's a question. >> no, sir. >> has anybody been dismissed? >> no, sir. you need to have the information to determine an imminent substantial threat -- >> so why do we need an epa if you can't do that. >> i'm sorry, let me -- >> no, i'm asking the questions. >> okay. >> yes. okay. in february is when you first arrived on the scene and it wasn't until january of the next year that you actually did something. that's the fundamental problem. don't look around like you're mystified. that's what happened. you had the authority, you had the backing of the federal government and you did not act when you had the chance and if you're going to do the courageous thing, you, too, should step down. >> to put it in perspective,
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ranking member cummings, these are the kind of red flags, though, that i kick myself. i wish i would have asked more question, but i was getting -- >> hold on, i want you to finish your kicks. >> did that emergency management system fail under your leadership in this instance? >> in this instance it would be much to the case i have that as you wish they would have asked more questions -- >> is that a yes or a no? >> in this particular case with respect to the water issue? that would be a fair conclusion. >> were you wrong to run that government like a business? >> in terms of running it like a business, a government is not a business. >> it isn't. so why would you say it should be run like one? >> in terms of accountability and measurements and delivering real results to the people and in terms of not just flint but the state of michigan i'm very proud we did things, healthy michigan, bringing medicaid expansion, bringing healthy kids dental care -- >> you can go talk about all the things you want to talk about. i'm going to ask the questions i
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want to ask. >> you were not in a medically induced coma for a year. [ laughter ] and i've had about enough of your false contrition and your phony apologies. you admit today that even after the whole world knew that flint residents were exposed to unimaginable levels of lead you did not declare a state of emergency until january, 2016. isn't that true? >> i took immediate action as soon as i learned there was a lead issue. we started issuing filters to people, doing water testing, blood testing. to be open i wish more would have been done. >> governor snyder, plausible deniability only works when it's plausible and i'm not buying you didn't know about any of this until october, 2015. pretty soon, we will have men who strike their wives saying "i'm sorry, dear, but there were failures at all levels." people who put dollars over the fundamental safety of the people do not belong in government. and you need to resign, too, governor snyder. >> oh, my god.
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okay -- first of all, yes, everyone obviously screwed up terribly and what's happened in flint is an embarrassment to our country and apparently it's happening in other places as well but i'm really glad these lawmakers took their moment in the sun to look so tough. can't they pass some sort of emergency legislation to actually do something? can't they get involved in a way that's constructive if they're going to be so highly critical and grandstand on the highest level against people who were clearly wrong on many levels? i mean, i just shook my head. again, trump. that's all i say. because people are so sick of that. >> willie just said "we wonder why people hate politicians." what a bunch of idiots they look like. >> trump u. >> what did you just say? >> i said trump university. >> oh, i thought you said something else. [ laughter ] >> that's a great campaign slogan. trump you! >> like laura bush, i'm not going to answer what i said. so look at this, four decades ago, love canal, remember that?
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it was an unfinished waterway, for those who don't know, that was a chemical dumping ground in the 1940s until it was sold and made the site of a school and soon an entire neighborhood. inform the '70s, families complained of illness, miscarriages and other effects. the federal government declared a state of emergency, moving hundreds out of the neighborhood, buying homes of hundreds more who wished the leave the area. the disaster led the government to pass the law that created the superfund designation and according to the epa, president carter approved emergency financial aid for the love canal area, the first emergency funds ever to be approved for something other than a natural disaster. if you need a precedent, it's not completely correlational here but come on, come on. everybody. >> but what it shows is the difference between washington then and washington now. >> exactly. >> washington then did stuff, fixed problems and got them done. >> now they sit there and grandstand. >> you're so great because off nasty opinion of those who messed up so badly. i don't want to ever hear those people again, i really don't.
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i'm so sick of washington. andrea mitchell, am i being too tough here? >> you're not being too tough and the most compelling thing was stephanie gosk, our correspondent was there, she's been covering this from the beginning. you had governor snyder saying repeatedly he was going to carry this with him for the rest of his life and stephanie interviewed a father with a two-year-old child who spent every christmas in the hospital, major problems, lung problems, legionnaires' disease with this child, this little girl and he said "he's going carry this for the rest of his life? my child is going to carry this for the rest of her life." this father works is a pastor in that community. and those families who were there, they came by bus, 12 hours from flint to sit through that hearing and they were just appalled by it. there's so much blame to go around but the fact that the stake took it over, the state made the decisions, the epa
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failed to follow up but there's plenty of fwliem go around and congress is grandstanding. >> howard dean, even by washington standards, that was horrifying. >> i was horrified. >> but the disgrace that happened in flint, and "usa today" is reporting it's happening in towns across the country. 350 schools and day care centers testing for elevated levels of lead and kids just like andrea described. that's not just happening in flint, that's happening everywhere. so the point if we can strip away the bad jokes written by staffers is how do we prevent this from happening somewhere else? >> well, first of all, it's true that the epa and governor snyder dropped the ball here. but i was -- like mika i was disgusted by the congress people on both sides with one of whom is a good friend. that doesn't prove anything and that's what the american people want to throw up when they see that. these guys get paid about $180,000 a year to sit in washington and hope they have hearings like this so they can carry on, yell and scream.
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what has congress done about this? nothing. zero. nothing. at least snyder and gina mccarthy are trying to do something. did they screw up? yes, they did. >> of course. >> are they trueing to do something about it? yes, they are. now if i were somebody in congress i would like to see congress with leadership that would appropriate money to fix these communities all over the place because everyday that this goes on that this isn't fixed more kids will be permanently brain damaged. am disgusted with congress. my view of them just went down and that's a hard place to get to. >> where is their emergency legislation? >> where is their emergency action? where are they? >> they're on recess. >> living their comfortable lives thinking about their next elections. really? okay. that's the way they want to be, that's why you are going to get donald trump. >> trump u! >> he just got a freebie from
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you. this is his -- >> do you think i was saying trump university? >> no, but i think that's the new tagline. >> because i was. >> trump you, vote for me. >> still ahead on "morning joe," congressman steve israel and senator amy klobuchar, maybe they can explain this to us. plus donald trump's personal information leaked. the republican front-runner is undergoing attacks from the group anonymous. hallie jackson joins with us that. and if you are in austin, texas, today, or this week bend sure to catch joe and his band at austinty limits. can you believe that this? it's a really good band. they are playing at the renown south by southwest festival tonight and tomorrow night at 8:00. come join them, you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. another on. i have an orc-o-gram for an "owen." that's me. ♪ you should hire stacy drew. ♪ ♪ she wants to change the world with you. ♪ ♪ she can program jet engines to talk and such. ♪ ♪ her biggest weakness is she cares too much. ♪ thank you. my friend really wants a job at ge. mine too. ♪ i'm a wise elf from a far off shire. ♪
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i see your senator, what a stiff, what a stiff. lindsey graham. i got called a jackass by this guy and i said to myself, hey, didn't this guy call me four years ago? and he gave me his number and i found the card. i wrote the number down. i don't know if it's the right number. let's try it.
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202-[ bleep ] it's three or four years ago so maybe it's an old number. >> that was donald trump in july giving out lindsey graham's phone number. i guess that's why he picked ted cruz. during a speech in south carolina, joining us from tucson, arizona, hallie jackson. hallie, you are reporting on a hammer gro hacker group claiming to have done something similar to trump. >> absolutely, mika, even though it sounds like that information has been out floating around the internet for months or even in some cases years, but that group, anonymous, seems to be trying to get attention for its so-called war against donald trump. taking aim not just at his politics but his personal life. now claiming credit for hacking donald trump, the group anonymous calling him a would be dictator. >> we are very serious about stopping any proposed forurth
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reich by donald trump. >> they claim they've released his numbers and social security numbers. donald trump said law enforcement is investigating. anonymous trying to get attention for their so-called war on trump. in washington, a very different battle to try and stop him, less public, too, after a secret huddle of frustrated conservatives, reassessing how to slow trump down since attack ads like this new one haven't seemed to do much. >> he wants more government health care. >> reporter: their plan? call for a unity ticket. if that doesn't work, plot out strategy for a contested convention, house speaker paul ryan acknowledging that scenario looks more likely. >> we're getting our minds around the idea that this could very well become a reality. >> reporter: now taking aim at trump for warning what could happen at a convention if he leads in delegates but doesn't get the nomination. >> i think you'd have riots. we have -- i'm representing a tremendous, many, many millions
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of people. >> nobody should say such thing s s in my opinion to hint at violence is unacceptable. >> while the stop trump movement wants unity, they're not saying who conservatives should unify behind. talk of ted cruz and marco rubio teaming up shot down. >> no. i'm not going to be anybody's vice president. >> rubio now praising cruz as conservative as the texas senator faces more attacks from donald trump. this new photoshopped poster of the movie "liar liar" puts cruz's head on jim carrey's body. but cruz may get the last half, now backed by an unlikely former foe, senator lindsey graham raising money for cruz less than a month after cracking there joke. >> if you kill ted cruz on the floor of the senate and the trial was in the senate, nobody could convict you. [ laughter ] >> reporter: talk about an unlikely pairing, strange bedfellows here. ted cruz will need the help of colleagues like lindsey graham if he wants to republican nomination but it's hard.
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you know he's famously disliked in washington. publicly the campaign will talk about cruz interacting with his colleagues in a professional way. privately a campaign aide tells me who do they reach out to in order to pick up these endorsements? it's a difficult line for cruz to watch because of the reputation he has in washington and inside the beltway. for example, i'm told that he didn't know about the nikki haley support until after it happened and then even when lindsey graham started to soften his stance against ted cruz a couple of weeks ago, the campaign found out through that basically how even else did, looking at it online through twitter. so for cruz this is something he'll have to work on moving forward trying to make sure he gets the support from the washington colleagues that he has while still keeping his message of railing against the washington cartel that seems to resonate with his supporters. >> nbc's hallie jackson, thank you, good to see you finally there with some light on you. joining us now, conservative strategist lisa booth, she's president of communication firms high noon strategies and
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contributor to the washington examin examiner. explain the stop trump movement. it doesn't have a good alternative. >> that's the problem because look there is no -- you can't deny -- it's inarguable the fact that the vitriol for donald trump among many republicans. two thirds of republican voters don't support him. if you look at exit polling from tuesday night, 37 of republican voters say they will. what you see right now is the split of the republican party. >> why isn't the alternative ted cruz? >> well, with senator lindsey graham stepping forward -- >> but he did it like this. he held his nose. >> he did. and he said the difference between picking between trump and ted cruz is either getting shot or poison so that's not really coming from a strong
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place or strong endorsement. but i think it indicates the movement potentially toward senator cruz and the reality that these guys will have to make a tough decision between two people that they didn't like very much. >> he's completely unelectable in the general election. do you agree with that? he's completely -- no matter how you slice and dice, ted cruz you may like or not like donald trump but he could strike lightning in a general election. ted cruz is unelectable and i think that's the reason they don't go to him. >> i would argue i think hillary clinton is going to have some problems, too. just the fact that -- >> but she's clearly electable. >> we'll see. she's having -- the fact she has a race against a 74-year-old self-avowed socialist and she's losing millennials by 80% in these contests or the fact she's doing so poorly among white men or the fact that people think
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she's a liar, you look at a contest like new hampshire and the voters that trust is an issue for them and a prominent issue for them in their decision making, they went to bernie 92% to 6%. >> that's well and good but you don't have a candidate, you don't have a strategy, you don't have a way to make this happen so -- and you don't have any agreement among your group as to what you want to do so it's hard. all of us would like to stop trump, at least i would, but i haven't heard anything from your group that suggests that you have a way to two it. >> well, i'm trying to look at the race objectively. >> all right, fine. but the group of people who are trying to do it. >> i don't discount that. that's the point i made to mika. that's the biggest problem with the movement is that you have to rally behind a candidate and maybe senator ted cruz -- >> they don't have a strategy. >> here's the thing, there is an undeniable anti-establishment sentiment. eight governors are gone, four senators are gone and now we're sitting with donald trump and ted cruz who are as
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anti-establishment as you can possibly get. donald trump wants to completely blow up the system and governor kasich has only one his state. >> well, anyhow, the club for growth has spent about $5.9 million against donald trump this cycle and now they're hitting trump in utah with an ad there ahead of tuesday's caucus. take a look. >> some people think government-run taxpayer paid health care is a disaster. and some don't. >> so we will have quality, affordable health care for every american. >> universal health care? >> i'm going to take care of everybody. >> who pays for it? >> the government will pay for it. >> ask donald trump why he sides with hillary clinton and why he wants more government health care. >> okay, what do you think? >> well, i mean, look -- >> do you think it will have any impact? >> i don't know because he's already had more than $35 million spent against him. look at the intensity of the ads
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in florida and the fact he won this state so substantially, this guy is like teflon, he's been able to survive a lot of attacks. >> but do the math. it's mathematically impossible for kasich to get a majority of the delegates, cruz has to win 87% of the remaining to get a majority. donald trump is going to arrive in cleveland either with a majority or as the leading number of delegate holders and i think it's going to be very hard for the republican party to derail that. >> i want to respond to that ad. they're getting it all wrong. you're not going to ever convince people who are trump supporters on issues, on left-brain mentality. the way to beat donald trump is you go right at women, right at latinos, right at blacks with a very aggressive fear message. if this guy is in office, you better watch out. you're not going to beat trump on logical things that, oh, he's for health care, don't vote. they don't care. >> okay, i want to follow up on a conversation that we had last block about flint, andrea
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mitchell. debbie stab nenow just sent me e-mail. "two months ago senator peters and i introduced emergency legislation to fund efforts to replace the water infrastructure in flint along with addressing public health issues. senator inhofe is our main co-sponsor along with four other dems and four republicans. senator lee is blocking it from getting a vote. after the break, we'll continue to push for the vote." that's mike lee of utah. really? do we disagree on flibt? we can't get emergency legislation on flint? >> it's hard to believe. i mean, i am very sympathetic to those who complain about things not being paid for and about the growing deficit and what we are doing to our military. the sequester, which i think was one of the biggest disasters afflicting both congress and this white house but the fact that they are not coming up with the money, it's pennies compared to what we spend on other things. >> i invite mike lee to come on
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the show. >> this is not a massive infrastructure bill. this is a crisis that needs to be dealt >> with i invite mike lee to come on the show and explain how he can oppose this. >> it's not mike lee, though, it's also the house republicans. >> anybody opposes this who has the guts to come on the air, please join us, call in, we'll take the call today. it's absolutely reprehensible. andrea mitchell, thank you very much. lisa boothe thanks for being on the show. >> thank you very much. appreciate it. we're back on in a moment with much more "morning joe." for a limited time, you can get a great deal on this passat. wow, it looks really good... volkswagen believes safety is very important... so all eleven models come standard with an intelligent crash response system... hmm. ...seven stability-enhancing systems... hmmm... ...and equipment for two child seats. hmmm... for those who take safety seriously. like we do. the volkswagen safety in numbers event... is happening now! get a $1,250 volkswagen reward card and 0% apr on new
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we learning more about the alleged american isis fighter who surrendered to kurdish forces in iraq this week. in an interview with kurdish television station kurdistan 24, a man the network says is 26-year-old virginia native mohammed jamal whitsy described how he traveled from turkey to syria to iraq to join isis. he says he made a bad decision to follow a young iraqi woman to mosul and claims he left isis because he doesn't share the views of the terror organization. >> i decided i needed to escape and go back to america. my message to the american people is that the life in mosul, it's really, really bad. >> u.s. officials say they are eager to question him, saying he
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could be an intelligence gold mine. up next, after years in congress, steve israel is leaving after this term. we'll ask him if he regrets he'll never get a chance to work with a possible trump administration we'll be right back. whole communities are living on mars and solar satellites provide earth with unlimited clean power. in less than a century, boeing took the world from seaplanes to space planes, across the universe and beyond. and if you thought that was amazing, you just wait. ♪
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senate democrats are putting their pressure on their republican counterparts when it comes to merrick garland, the nominee to the supreme court. garland made his first visit to capitol hill yesterday meeting with minority leader harry reid and senator patrick leahy, the top democrat on the judiciary committee. democrats are highlighting their meetings as a way to push republicans into holding confirmation hearings. a group of senators gathered outside the supreme court yesterday offering a message to republicans. >> all we're asking is for republicans to do their job. >> the american people overwhelmingly believe republicans have the
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responsibility to do their job because people get up and go to work everyday and do theirs. >> reporter: according to politico, democrats are planning to take aim at republican senators up for reelection, top among them, judiciary chair chuck grassley. nbc news has confirmed at least eight republican senators have said they're open to at least meeting with garland though some say that may not be that productive. senator grassley was quoted as saying if i can meet with a dictator in uganda i can surely meet with a decent person in america. well, thank you. joining us now -- is that weird? >> no i think hi he made a logical comment. he made it clear how absurd it is for some republicans say they won't meet with him. >> delayed reaction. joining us now, congressman steve israel of new york, chairman of the house policy and communications committee. welcome back. how are you? >> i'm doing well, thank you.
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>> what do you make of the garland bat until you think there will be one? >> this is a matter of common sense. this is where republicans are so out of touch with the american people. the american people are paying senators to do a job. they expect their senators to have a confirmation hearing, they expect their senators to debate and respect the constitution and they expect their senators to vote yes or vote no but vote. and when you have republicans who say we won't even open the door, that is why the american people have lost faith in government as an institution. >> is that why trump's doing so well? >> it's one of the reasons that trump is doing well. >> why do you think so many democrats say they're going to vote for trump? >> well, first of all, hillary clinton has more popular votes than donald trump does right now in any candidate. >> but do you concede that there are democrats who are supporting trump? >> there's no question that donald trump is tapping into an historic anxiety. a convergence of issues confronting the american people. the loss of faith in government
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and an institution as exemplified by the fact that michigan couldn't have clean drinking water, economic anxieties with an economy changing before their very eyes. trump is tapping into that. >> are the democrats in that group looking at hillary clinton as someone who has been around as part of the problem as opposed to trump who is the difference. it's just surprising you hear from so many democrats, you look at exit polling and see that he's getting support from not just republican primary voters. >> he's getting support in a subset of a subset of a subset. >> what does that mean? >> there hasn't been one single election, one single contest pitting hillary clinton and donald trump together. donald trump starts out with a 60% disapproval rating and when you get into those contests i'm very confident that hillary clinton is going to do very well. >> so if you were advising the republican party right now, you're going to -- they call you in. >> i would tell them to do exactly what they're doing. >> exactly. >> but we were talking off
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camera and mr. ratner said they were just in -- and i agree with you, a lose-lose-lose position, no matter which way they turn then suddenly you put the hearings on top of it. this is -- this buffoonery is at a level that i think the latest poll on the republican party as far as just -- as a brand, it is an all time -- i can't remember the number but it's a stunning low and if you're an american and you watch this and here, by the way, obama has intelligently put a very, very, very credible candidate on the table and the fact that they won't even walk into a room is appalling, disgusting and pathetic. how low can they go at this point? >> donnie, i've been asking myself that question for years about they find a way to go lower. i agree completely. their brand is toxic. you know where i hear this? the most honest places on capitol hill, the members only elevators where members speak honestly because there's no press, you guys aren't allowed
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in. you know what i hear from republican house members across the country? they're in a dead panic. now having donald trump at the top of their ticket hurts them and i won't say puts the house in play but it expands the battlefield,er in a dead panic. . well, donald trump stole the party from them and they're trying to figure out how to get it back. it may be too late. but you're retiring at the end of the cycle and you've cited fund-raising as one of the pieces of your job that isn't your favorite. how satisfying can it be to be in the house at the moment, not just in the minority but where the majority spends its time passing 51 bills or whatever it is to repeal obamacare, passing other stuff just designed to make a political point and when something like flint comes along they just grandstand and they're not willing to do anything? >> it's completely unsatisfying
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these are the reasons i left. i've been there for 16 years, it's time to let somebody else try to job. but the fund-raising regiment. the fact that when we need the post office, the only thing republicans can bring themselves to do is to name post offices, when we try to name a post office after maya angelou nine republicans voted against it because they said she's a communist. off crisis in flint michigan, the democratic leadership sent a letter to paul ryan saying don't adjourn the congress let's stay here until we get it done. people are tired of blame. they want solutions. we have said we'll stay here and work until we get a solution and meanwhile two weeks we're going on vacation because paul ryan wants to let members go. >> don't disagree. howard dean? >> first of all, thank you for your chairmanship of the dccc. that's a very difficult job. secondly i get asked this all
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the time so let me ask a retiring member who i respect a lot. how do you see the long-term way out of this? how are we going to get out of this nasty partisan do nothing approach? how do we grow out of this as a country? >> feel free to speak freely since you're leaving. >> i will speak freely because now i'm liberated. [ laughter ] i'll give you the solution, you have to have non-partisan redistricting. the reason we are in this polarity is because congressional districts are drawn far to the right, far to the left. you have so many of these tea party members of congress who live in fear of a primary from the right. when eric cantor lost a primary, that defined the environment. when we have districts where you have people who want to be problem solvers, that's how we get out of it. >> congressman steve israel, thank you so much for being on this show this morning. still ahead, back in the black, the dow turns positive for 2016. we'll go live to the stock exchange. plus, senator elizabeth warren doesn't usually miss a
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headed toward a brokered convention where the party bosses pick somebody other than
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trump or cruz. they would have to find a good compromise candidate and there is an experienced party elder who everyone respects and it's john boehner who gets we should make paul ryan do it. yesterday boehner said we don't have a nominee who can win on the first ballot. i'm for none of the above. i'm for paul ryan to be our nominee. >> doesn't mean paul ryan can be your go to flunky for everything. >> do you know whose great at eating food in paul ryan. >> paul ryan doesn't want to be the candidate because he, quote, believes the nominee should be someone who ran this year. okay. so that narrows it down to these people. >> all right. howard dean, final thoughts from you this morning on where the race stands. >> oh, the race. >> all right. unless you want to say something else. >> i was going to say something good about steve israel. he's right. i was so amazed to hear a democrat from new york saying we ought to be nonpartisan
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redistricting. it will hurt the democrats in new york but help the country a lot. i think he's 100% right. >> i agree with that, too. thanks so much for being on this morning. >> thank you. still ahead, more on another stopped donald trump plan hatched in another secret meeting, plus. between trump and cruz i think you get the same outcome, you know, whether it's death by being shot or poisoning, does it really matter? >> drum roll, please. did he pick the miss toll or the poison? >> he picked the pistol. >> we will take you through senator graham's five stages of grief.
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good morning. it's friday, march 18th. it's 8:00 a.m. on the east coast, 5:00 a.m. out west. joe is in austin this morning and you all -- is anyone going to austin? if you are in the area you should watch him perform at austin city limits tonight. it's going to be amazing. with us on set we have former communications director for president george w. bush, nicolle wallace, we also have former treasury official and "morning joe" economic analyst steve rattner and donny is here along with willie and me. >> the republican national convention opens in exactly four months from today. that is four months for a band of party regulars who remain determined to stop donald trump from gaining its nomination to enact their plan. in downtown washington yesterday conservative activists met privately to device that plan. they settled on calling for a unity ticket, so who it would consist of remains unclear
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leaving options open to a former candidate or someone who did not run. they encouraged all former and current candidates to hold their delegates on the first ballot at the convention and pledge to keep their options open as to other avenues, which could include a write-in campaign in the fall. trump recently suggested there could be riots if he is not nominated, which one of the leaders of the group, erick erickson alluded to in an interview and also drew rebuke from house speaker paul ryan. >> in 1860 abraham lincoln it took him three ballots to become the republican nominee. if he can do it without riots in the street the other candidates should be able to do it as well. >> nobody should say such things in my opinion because to even address or hint to violence is unacceptable. >> and then meanwhile "politico" reports that speaker ryan, paul ryan, met with conservative mega donors in florida last night. while "politico" sources say the meeting is not intended to be about trump, among the two dozen
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in attendance were new york hedge fund manager paul singer and chicago cubs co-owner todd rikts who are investing heavily in stop trump campaigns. the report says that south carolina governor nikki haley a vocal trump opponent is set to address the group this morning. in his press conference yesterday ryan said it is increasingly likely we're headed for a contested convention and maintained that he is still neutral in the presidential battle and will never be a candidate. >> in the event that no person will you kn running for the republican nominee right now gets enough on the first ballot you will not put yourself forward. >> i thought i was pretty clear. i saw boehner last night and i told him to knock it off. i used slightly different words. i used his own words that he used to use against us when he told us to knock things off. it's not going to be me.
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it should be somebody running for president. look, i made a decision over a year ago not to run for president. i really believe if you want to be president you should run for president. people are out there campaigning, they're van cassing, there's caucuses and primaries. that's who we should select from among for our next presidents on whatever ballot we're talking about. >> my goal is to be dispassionate and to be switzerland, to be neutral and dispassionate and to make sure that the rule of law prevails and to make sure that the delegates make their decision however the rules require them to do that. >> nicolle, the press is really, really, really trying to get paul ryan to run for president. i don't know how many ways he can say it differently. this stop trump movement, you have a lot of money guys, a lot of smart people getting together, they're having meetings, they want to stop trump, they have hashtags and the whole thing but at the end of the day they need a candidate. >> can't just have hashtags. >> is that person out there? >> well, there were 17 of them.
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>> right. >> yeah. >> stop trump movement has been robust, it has been litigated and the people didn't settle on the people that the hashtag movement folks wanted. they settled on -- you can't call majority but plurality settled on donald trump. so i may have the least in common sort of with his platform, whatever it may be, but i have the most sympathy for the case he is making. he's the person they're voting for and this all just reeks of the same arrogance and denial that brought them to this place. if this sort of state of denial is a cycle no one looks like they're ready to break it. if they want to break the cycle they should get out in the country, get out of washington and understand why people are voting for him. >> and the reality is the more the stop movement trump is out there the more is feeds into his brand. the more the establishment, the
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elite, point out and say, no, that's not your candidate people are going so say, no, it is our candidate. >> maybe the argument, steve, is let trump be trump. >> i talked to one he have them yesterday and i would say i don't know that they're even clearly thinking about what the options are, i think it's like writing in a candidate, they don't understand what would be involved on trying to get on ballots if they were to run a third party candidate, there is a lot of confusion and disorganization, but i think at the end of the day, one, what we know is that there's nobody except trump who could possibly get to the convention with a majority of delegates. >> correct. >> number two, trump is going to almost certainly be the one who gets in the most delegates, may or may not be over 1,237 i don't know if there are going to be riots, i don't encourage riots, i'm not sure trump does, but the idea that the convention is going to reach down to somebody who came in a distant third or reach out into nowhere when you have a guy with 45, 47, 48% of the delegates it just surreal. >> stay on the riots for a second. i've known donald a long time and i like donald personally, i
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disagree with a bunch of his politics but he's got to stop with the punch and the riots and -- it's just -- from both -- >> from knowing him is that what you know about him. >> i've never seen that. >> i'm going to appeal to his left brain also. it's the right strategic move also. it's time to pivot. at this point even if you can't do it from your soul do it from a strategic point of view. somebody is going to get killed at some point. i'm still stuck a week ago, i know you guys have talked ad nauseam on the kid getting punched by the hillbilly and my stock ma'am hurts. it was the first time i got, you know, back and forth about trump and this and that. it made me sad, it made me frightened it viscerally affected me and donald is my friend, i just say, dude, this is where it stops. this is where you have to say, hey, i'm this, i'm this, i'm this, but at the end of the day i'm a father, i'm a grandfather, i love this country, i want -- i care.
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if you are a leader, if you're presidential, if you are the man, if you remember that strong, if your brand is that about strength, a strong man says, no, and i have the power to stop that from happening. you don't need it at this point. >> if i could add to some demographic politics. he has almost maxed out sort of the anger vote. if he wants to grow now it's time to go get the moms. no mom wants to see their kid at a trump rally real writhe now. i heard from moms who were opened to him, but they would never let their kids who are totally paying attention to this cycle go to one of his rallies for fear of what might happen to them. >> also on paul ryan didn't he say those exact words maybe alex can pull it for later about being speaking? just saying. >> yeah. >> he would be the only in theory. >> it's a little different now because he is the speaker, he is in charge of the convention. >> i'm just saying. >> and also i wonder if a guy like that wants to waste his bullet on running for president on a spoiler race. >> he doesn't. >> he's too young.
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>> maybe he is not saying it in a way that's convincing immediate in the media, but he does not want to be written in on the second or third ballot. >> and you can't win. >> willie. >> this is an interesting twist. senator lindsey graham has made no secret that he's a fan of neither donald trump more ted cruz. >> he has definitely said that. >> he once kwipd choosing between trump and choose is between being shot or poisoned. yesterday senator graham announced he had back ted cruz. >> oh. >> here is a look at how senator graham picked his poison. >> would ted cruz be a more acceptable nominee to you than donald trump? >> no. >> no. >> you're in trouble then, my man. >> when i think of problem-solving verse the first name in my mind is not ted cruz. >> if you kill ted cruz on the floor of the senate and the trial was in the senate, nobody could convict you. >> i'm not really happy about
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where the country is right now. our party and our country is going to have to up its game. >> if you nominate trump and cruz i think you get the same outcome. you know, whether it's death by being shot or poisoning, does it really matter? >> we may be in a position where we have to rally around ted cruz is the only way to stop donald trump and i'm not so sure that would two work. >> but you would recommend that in order to stop donald trump rallying behind ted cruz. >> i can't believe i would say yes, but yes. >> i think the best alternative to donald trump to stop him from getting 1,237 is ted cruz and i'm going to help ted in every way i can and if i were in one of the states coming up in terms of voting and i didn't like trump i'd vote for cruz. >> that was a whole journey right there in one clip. >> and a ringing endorsement. >> thank you so much. >> clearly this is not about him liking ted cruz, this is about him trying to stop donald trump anyhow, anyway, and he thinks
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ted cruz has the best chance. >> that's a confused tortured reality. >> can i say at least he's picking somebody before. the weakness is the -- the weakness of what romney did is there is not a political example that you can point to where anyone achieved success by simply coming out against somebody. so at least lindsay -- and lindsay is a skilled truth teller in times of despair for the republican party, but at least he came out and was for somebody. i actually think it's surprising and i think in part it's because cruz went 0 for 5 tuesday night that there weren't more sort of establishment endorsements for cruz or kasich for that matter. >> i think the only way for the party through this is to back cruz, because kasich can't get there, he can't even get near there. >> that would be a worse outcome in november, cruz, and there are some long that. >> there are some long that but i think there are a lot who think at least cruz is a true conservative and they like that part of him. >> you had marco rubio come out yesterday and say that ted cruz is the only true conservative
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left, you think maybe he will come around behind ted cruz as well. elz has made some news this morning, we will get to that in a moment, but first "the new york times" is reports on what the paper calls unusually candid marks marks by president obama. the times writes, quote, president obama privately told a group of democratic donors last friday that senator bernie sanders was nearing the point at which his campaign against hillary clinton would end and that the party must soon come together to back her. that's a quote. all right. the president's comments were summarized for the times by three people present at the event and were later confirmed by a white house official. then here is what white house press secretary josh earnest had to say about the report at his briefing yesterday. >> president obama made a case that would be familiar to all of you which is that as democrats
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move through this competitive primary process we need to be mindful of the fact that our success in november in electing a democratic president will depend on the commitment and ability of the democratic party to come together behind our nominee. the president did not indicate or specify a preference in the race. >> why was that so hard? >> because i don't think he was actually completely coming to terms with what happened. he obviously did. >> right. >> he obviously did. and, by the way, this is what people hate about washington. just, do you know what, no comment, tell the truth, but don't do that. >> that's like a very light version of why we're dealing with donald trump because he is
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at least out there about -- >> -- better for hillary if bernie stays in the race keeping her sharp. >> possibly. >> strange way whereas if she's anointed -- that was the problem everybody had with her initially going in, it's a coronation, whereas you're going to have this republicans in this knife fight for the next three or four months and if hillary is already sitting on her thrown -- >> the president is going to back hillary, this he have a deal, he ought to keep it closed for a while, but he hasn't. >> do you agree it's actually better for hillary if the battle with bernie -- she's going to obviously end up the nominee. by the way, only human being ever that has said -- >> i think hillary -- she wasn't anointed in the end. she did go through a set of primaries, some of them were tougher than others, in the end in the last week she's won all five of them. >> that's my point. >> why. i think in the past many nominees have become the de
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facto nominees by the middle of march, i think she's done that. i think her preference should be now -- >> her priority should be to go reach out to republicans, whether it's cruz or trump there will be people for whom cruz is too conservative, trump is too crazy and i think it would be to her advantage to be focusing on picking up sort of center right voters not fighting with bernie sanders. >> so the president was trying to nudge people in the right direction without saying he actually nudged people in the right direction. i love washington. it's so obvious at this point. >> a closed door fundraiser and reporters were gone. >> -- was left in the position of dancing around the truth which i can show you another version of that, but i think what's really happening here is that elizabeth warren might be trying to negotiate herself a very good division in whatever the clinton administration might look like. senator elizabeth warren was asked yesterday about hillary clinton's paid speeches on wall street. now, you think the answer to that would be crystal clear,
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right? elizabeth warren. should hillary release the wall street speeches? of course she should. right? >> that's what she said, rights? >> it's got to be. take a look. >> do you believe that senator clinton should release the transcripts of her speeches to goldman sachs? >> look, i think that our candidates are out doing what they should do in a primary. they are debating the issues. >> you're not answering my question, senator. >> well, what i'm doing is i'm telling you what i think should be going on right now in this election. >>. >> it's a yes or no question. should she release the transcripts or not? >> what i told you is that i think that the primaries are doing exactly what they should be doing and that the candidates are being tested. >> mika, you must be so depressed. that's your girl. >> i think she's going to be beat. there must be something in play here. that was obviously dancing around the topic so i hope you get something good. >> well, you just let josh
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earnest have it for dancing around the topic. >> i did. >> in a back handed way i'm saying she was being -- she was completely circumventing the question, i'm not sure i would have continued the interview. you guys know that i'm good on that. but that was no answer. there must be some negotiation under way. i hope it works out really well because we need her. still ahead on "morning joe" a former republican first lady hedges on whether she'd vote for donald trump, plus why trade and not illegal immigration is driving many voters this election cycle. steve rattner is charting the economy. later, can democrats use just three words to force a vote on supreme court nominee merrick garland? we will ask senator amy klobuchar, but first bill concerns with a check on a potentially serious storm. >> in the forecast world there's high confidence and average and low confidence. right now this is bordering between an average and low
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confidence. every 12 hours we get new guidance that tells us how much our computers think, again, this is a peas of the puzzle not the actual forecast. yesterday it was looking like a blockbuster snowstorm on our european model, 6 to 12 inches from the north, then this morning it was completely different, took about half the snow away. then we discussed this piece of the puzzle from our american model which shows no accumulating snows in the area of new england. that's why we've gone from an average confidence to a low confidence forecast. if you don't want snow this is what the rest of you want. right now you still have a good chance of snow areas new york city and eastern new england, especially cape cod, boston and maine sunday night. we will have to watch it. still about 50 to 60 hours away. we've also tracked a lot of storms this morning in florida and a couple of areas of mississippi and alabama, it's clearing out but watch out later today, areas down in texas. you won't get what you saw yesterday. these pictures from the dallas/fort worth area were impressi impressive. this is 7:00 to 8:00 a.m. in the
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morning this thunderstorm came through, very isolated storm with golf ball, almost baseball size hail, you saw the damage it did. gets go to the forecast for the weekend. strong storms today in texas, that moves into the deep south and southeast tomorrow, which sunday that's the storm that will move up the coastline bringing a wintry mess to areas of the northeast. again, monday the roads will probably be okay because it's march but grassy surfaces have a good chance of getting snow accumulations. we will keep you updated especially in maine, boston to cape cod. know your financial plan won't keep you up at night. know you have insights from professional investment strategists to help set your mind at ease. know that planning for retirement can be the least of your worries. with the guidance of a pnc investments financial advisor, know you can get help staying on track for the future you've always wanted.
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you are a republican. >> that's right. >> if donald trump is the republican nominee are you going to vote for him. >> susan, i'm not going to answer. don't ask that. >> in your book it's clear that you don't think islam hates america, that you don't think all muslims should be banned from entering the united states.
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is there a point where you would feel compelled to come off the sidelines to speak against -- >> well, this is what i want americans to remember, what our real values are and one of the very first things, one of the reasons we are a country is because we believed in freedom of religion. >> former first lady laura bush speaking out by not speaking out on donald trump saying don't ask that question. she is such a wonderful gracious -- >> she is so lovely. >> one issue that's really driving the vote this election cycle is trade. exit polls showed us once again on tuesday that's the case. in ohio and north carolina the majority of republican voters believe trade negatively affects u.s. jobs, similar story on the democrats side although voters from north carolina are more divided on whether trade creates or hurts american jobs. steve rattner has some charts to better explain the world trade playing in this election and how
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bernie sanders and donald trump are benefiting. >> the polls to start from your exit poll numbers about the benefits of trade and trump on those voters is basically the bottom line, both in ohio a state that he lost as well as in north carolina. he did extremely well among those voters and so did bernie sanders. so they are appealing to people who feel trade is hurting us. but let's look at both sides of trade and start with the benefits of trade because trade does help the country as a whole. i don't think most economists would disagree with that. estimating the benefits is a little bit hard, but there are numbers around 300 to $500 billion range. putting that into perspective that could be as much as $1,000, $2,000 for every american that they're better off because there is trade. we have a huge number of jobs tried to trade, 20% of all jobs relate to trade, it's not just in things that you might think about like manufacturing but even a lot of service jobs and things have an export component to them. most importantly the benefit that all of us at this table and
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many of ours viewers see is in lower prices. things that we don't make here very much anymore are much cheaper because they can be made less expensively elsewhere. tvs and computers down 75% to 85%, toys down 40%, furniture down 7%. obviously with toys and computers there is a technology element. furniture, bedding, toys, it's simply a matter of people being able to make them less expensively elsewhere and we all get the benefit in lower prices that we've paid but there are problems with trade particularly with jobs and wages. if you start with jobs you can see that over the last 15 years we have lost over 70% of our textile and apparel jobs. if you want to understand what was happening in north carolina and south carolina in those primary votes, you see how many textile workers don't have their jobs anymore. if you want to get an idea what was happening in michigan and ohio you can look at autos. ohio is the second biggest auto
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state after michigan. even with the auto recovery, all the good stuff that's happening with cars now we are still 30% fewer jobs than we had 15 years ago in the auto sector. and then it also affects wages. and if you take a look at this wage chart you can see that since the beginning of the recovery wages for people in the economy as a whole have risen about 2.5% after adjusting for inflation. people in service sectors, financial services, information, education, hospitality and leisure, even these low paid service jobs in hotels and things have all seen theirs wages go up a little bit. who has seen their wages go down? it's been people in manufacturing, down .8% and in the auto industry down by a staggering 12%. so if you want to -- if you want to understand why people in these places, especially those working class white males that we talk about a lot, disaffected, they have a good
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reason to be. >> well, and also isn't this -- everyone is so concerned about what exactly is drawing people to trump. isn't this one very legitimate reason why trump could do well in some of those places that you mentioned? >> when you talk about putting up 35% tariff barriers, when you talk about forcing companies to make things in america again, all that appeals to people who basically think they lost their jobs because -- because of these other countries competed with us and took our jobs away. >>est what the impact of that in reality, though, putting up a tariff like that and -- >> it would be totally disastrous. here is the irony of the whole thing and maybe nicolle won't like this answer but here is the irony of the whole thing, the republicans to some degree create their own problem. the republicans for the last seven years -- >> really? we never heard that before. >> the republicans for the last seven years have basically blocked any kind of policy action, any kind of initiative, many of which obama has proposed that would have made the lives better for these people who are now very unhappy. so it's kind of boomeranged back
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around. >> the failure is the republicans don't have any eloquent rational relatable advocates for free trade. the party is devoid of people who can talk about how trade benefits your life. everyone can have some of those products on your because of trade. there is no advocates. if it's hillary versus trump there will be no gate about the benefits of trade. >> i don't think you can sell the benefits of free trade when you have so many individuals in so many key straights are hurting. >> it's pandering to their fears. there are benefits of free trade. the republican party no longer has a candidate in contention who is an advocate for free trade. >> if you look at the exit polls for people who believe free trade has helped us john kasich wins those. >> my point is they are an incredible minority because there is no powerful defender of the benefits of free trade. >> i think the republican party would have been better off if we had done something over the seven 7, 10, 15 years to help
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these people rather than -- >> of course, it also would have been better off if there was someone able to communicate in a compelling way about the larger benefits to their lives into that's been donald trump's biggest hit on john kasich is he voted for nafta. look at what happened in ohio. >> and hillary. >> john kasich has been measured but he has been saying what you want him to say, that you've got to understand there are benefits from free trade. >> somebody thinks they lost their job because of it all the benefits in the world -- >> exactly. >> coming up on "morning joe" with new reports that president obama is quietly signaling to donors he is behind hillary clinton our next guest wonders why does the president tell rich people special information that he doesn't tell everyone else. that's a good question. and why does evening it's going to stay private? [alarm beeps] ♪
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all we're asking is for the republicans to do their job. >> the american people overwhelmingly believe republicans have the responsibility to do their job. because people get up and go to work every day and do theirs. >> senate democrats with a message to their republican counterparts, do your job. when it comes to the president's pick for the supreme court. joining us from capitol hill member of the senate judiciary committee democratic senator amy klobuchar of minnesota. she is a hillary clinton supporter and is also traveling with president obama to cuba next week. great to have you on. >> thank you, mika. >> i couldn't agree more, i think the republicans are
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speaking for themselves and, you know, there's no need to even criticize because it's so obvious the blunder that they are making by being so difficult about this nominee. i would like to broaden the conversation, though, and ask shouldn't congress be doing its job, for example, we were talking earlier about flint, michigan. why not stay home from recess and work on emergency legislation to solve the problem immediately instead of grandstanding? are you republicans holding that back as well? >> well, you know, i would be happy to stay home from recess and do that. i will say we don't control the schedule and we were very close to getting some kind of agreement on flint and i heard that it fell apart, but hopefully there will be an agreement later to do some very important funding. that is an outrageous situation out there and one that was neglected for way too long, but i think the larger question here is that you could do two things at once, mika.
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you can do emergency relief for flint and at the same time you can move ahead and schedule hearings which tends to involve only about 20 senators on the judiciary committee because that is what we have done time and time again, back to when we first started doing hearings. i maybe wasn't here in 1916, but back to 1916, every nominee has gotten a hearing unless that nominee has withdrawn and there's just no excuse for not holding hearings and people don't have to vote for this outstanding nominee, they don't have to decide to go that way, but they have to at least hear him out. you've got a former prosecutor, you know, headed up the cases with the union a bomber and oklahoma city bombing, it's just no one you treat like this. >> would you make the connection that this is sort of part of a long standing narrative and could even be a part of the reason why donald trump is republican front runner right
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now? >> well, you know, i think that that's a very interesting question. i was thinking about this because in the last year the republicans have worked with president obama and certainly the democrats in congress have worked with him to get a budget passed, to get a transportation bill passed, to make some of the changes that we need for education and some bills have gotten passed, but unfortunately this highly partisan political decision to not follow the constitution, to not follow history really sets back that argument that they may have been making in a very big way and i think that's why you see two-thirds of american people saying, just do your job and have the hearing. >> why do you think democrats, a significant enough number to note, are supporting trump? >> well, i think first of all, we have not gotten to that general election. on both sides we have had very highly contested primaries with
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arguments on various issues and you always want -- the reason we have those primaries is so that parties have candidates, but the reason you have time for debates and you have conventions is for people to really see each nominated candidate make their case. that's how american politics has worked. we haven't gotten to that point. >> it's not an answer. >> i think it is an answer. >> it's not an answer as to why democrats are supporting trump right now. >> mika, first of all -- >> could i answer -- >> okay. i think we all know that there is a lot of anger out there and there are people that right now haven't been able to figure out what to do on the democratic side and i think once -- if hillary clinton is the nominee once she's able to make that case i think you're going to see significant shift when our party has one candidate to run against. we have had, what, 10, 15 and that is much harder to make the case for democrats about what
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the other side stands for. once we're able to do that i think that you will see that support shifting back. >> all right. senator amy klobuchar. thank you very much. let's bring in anand geared after das. >> democrats are supporting donald trump, yes, there are some, but you make it -- as long as donald trump is saying things like islam hates americans he is going to be a very tiny bit of democrats. as long as that hate mongering is going on -- >> i was just curious. >> by the way, a lot of people -- i lot of democrats do not like hillary clinton, but that doesn't mean they're going the other way. >> they might also support trump because he is a democrat but who knows. anand, let's look at this in terms of the rise of trump and just how sort of significant -- significantly he has upset the republican party.
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let's keep it there, i guess, if there's an argument as to whether or not democrats support him. at this point is the stop trump movement going anywhere? >> what's really strike to go me i've just been watching the people talking about it today at one level there seems to be a lot of activity and people are meeting in this secret hotel ballroom and that secret hotel ballroom, but i actually think there is a stunning lack of stepping up among the people who claim that they are dead against him. >> right. >> i think 91% of senators, governors and house members on the republican side have yet to endorse everybody. that's a simple form of power that they have chosen not to use. the question is what about ceos, what about things like banks saying if you are -- >> well, there are some ceos. >> there's a whole bunch of firepower that actually has not even been loaded and i'm curious is there any line beyond which the people who claim to be worried about him are worried enough to actually take risks.
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>> what more would he need to say or do? >> right. >> go ahead, chris. >> i think anand is wrong on this. i don't think the endorsements matter and i think if the institutional power of banks and corporations went against donald trump it would actually help him and make him stronger. i do think that there is a definite ability to stop donald trump and it would take ted cruz and john kasich uniting in a ticket early on. i believe that the secret meetings which are apparently taking place in the hopes of maybe a brokered convention and denying trump that on the first ballot, extremely dangerous, extremely bad for the party if that happens. they have to either defeat donald trump on the first ballot or basically core nate him because the party is already extremely fractured. you know, in 1964, 1976 the last time there were divisions in the
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republican party at the conventions they lost badly in the general election. this is far worse than '64 and '76. so there needs to be, i think, an understanding that trump is the nominee if he gets very close to that magic number of 1,237. that said, i still think he can be stopped. >> but to that point it's mathematically it seems at the moment anyway very difficult for him not to get close to that 1,237 cruz would have to win 87% of the remaining delegates, kasich it's mathematically impossible and the parties are shifting to winner take all or disproportionate allocation of delegates. >> steve, if you look at all the polls in a head to head ted cruz beats donald trump 10 to 14 points in the most recent polls. so if john kasich were to get behind ted cruz, let's say, they did a deal and there is discussions about this apparently of a cruz/kasich
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ticket, basically what's happening is kasich's people think that he's going to win in niece blue states, beat donald trump and ted cruz and they will go into a brokered convention and john is going to emerge as sort of the guy to bring the party together. i think he's delusional. they're waiting to wisconsin, the insiders are saying, they're waiting until wisconsin. if kasich wins in wisconsin he's going to go to the end. if he loses in wisconsin, which is probably likely, that's april 5th, he might do a deal with ted cruz and then you would have them winning probably they conceivably could win every winner take all state and proportional -- proportionately pull in an enormous amount of votes. >> i want to ask you a question, if i can. donald trump is a personal friend of yours. >> yes. >> is the person running for president saying these things a person you recognize as the same person as your personal friend, or is he creating a character to
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essentially win this election and then you have faith that maybe the person you know who is less extreme than that will be that eventual nominee or president? are these the same people or are we dealing with two different people? >> look, there's two donald trumps. there's the -- and mika is a friend and joe, they've soon it, too. incredibly generous, charismatic, smart, kind hearted, and then there's sort of that other donald trump we're seeing who is angry and petty and sometimes vindictive and some people don't even recognize even his friends that to the degree he is going in that direction. i was chatting recently with bernie kerik the new york city police commissioner here on 9/11, he was telling me, look, when everyone was thinking about how to get out of the new york city right after 9/11, donald trump called and said, look, i'm emptying my buildings, sending out 500 to 1,000 people down to ground zero to help out as
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volunteers. not only that, trump came down. there was no press conferences, no photo ops. that's the sort of good donald trump that we all know. i've chatted with him and said, hey, look, you've got to stop attacking all of the people that you're going to need in the general election. >> or your country. >> anand, i have to leave it there. thank you both. fascinating conversation. >> the question that he asked is actually the question i ask myself a lot. still ahead, the dow is back and so is sara eisen. she joins us live from the stock exchange next. storm coming? a very dangerous cheese storm. so you have 20 more bags. mhm. my yoga instructor calls it the death spiral. i call it living the dream. american express presents the blue cash everyday card with no annual fee. cash back on purchases. see you tomorrow. backed by the service and security of american express.
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fought off all of those losses. a few reasons why that i'll share with you, number one, oil prices have bounced. they've been rising for the last four weeks, above $40 a barrel. the strong dollar which was hurting a lot of our corporations overseas had started weakening again. emerging markets are stabilizing, china is offering some reassuring signals on communication and the federal reserve this week sounded very gloomy, which is actually a positive thing for wall street because it means that they're going to hold off on raising interest rates. all of these factors are coming together to help markets rally. will it continue? we'll be watching oil, we'll be watching commodities, we will also be watching as we head into the general election which i know you guys were talking about whether there is any political risk. the market doesn't like uncertainty, we will see if we start moves on that. >> sara eisen thank you. >> the market doesn't like uncertainty, we have a problem. up next, drug prices have been a topic so far in the presidential campaign so who is
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welcome back. the doctors are in. joining us from san diego former white house adviser for health policy dr. ezekiel emanuel and here on set leading spine surgeon, author dr. dave campbell. two big topics today.
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zeke, we will start with you, drug prices, who is to blame? >> yeah, there is a sort of spitting match between the drug companies and the insurers. the drug companies saying insurers are passing on a lot of the costs, the insurers say drug prices keep going up and up. the fact is over the last few years while healthcare costs have been flat drug prices have gone up much higher than inflation and the economy or healthcare prices and they do seem to be consuming an ever larger amount. i recently talked to an insurer in the united states where drug -- their drug costs have now exceeded everything they pay for hospital care. that's a really, really new -- >> that's crazy. >> -- territory where drug costs are a huge part of what we pay. >> why are you coughing, donny? >> we see increasing needs for chronic can i see diseases. if it weren't for chronic diseases there wouldn't be increasing need for healthcare
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costs. and as the drug prices go up and as the need for those drugs go up and we have people in the united states that really want the best of everything and doctors, which of that whole group of stakeholders from insurance companies to drug companies it's really only the doctors that took the hippocratic oath. their responsibility is to do no harm. the company's responsibility is to make a profit and sell their products. >> but you've got these companies in which during is the most egregious example, they are buying old drugs where the r&d costs are expensed and they're raising prices 300, 400%. is it the government, the insurers, the hospitals? >> some believe this is the way it should work. >> that's inappropriate. it's the consumer being the patient who is willing to and agreeing to pay such a price. there is lots of ways to skin
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the same cat, steve. >> let's make two points. the first is patients actually don't pay the price of the drugs. while we do complain a lot about the costs of the drugs it turns out that all the rest of us are paying for everyone. there was a recent study just for drugs related to rheumatoid art thinks and some other immunological diseases and $89 to everyone's insurance premiums. so we are all paying for other people. that's the first point. and the second point is a lot of this increase in price is driven by these so-called specialty drugs, these $100,000 a year drugs which drug companies have been focusing in on and are predicted over the next few years to take an ever larger part of the drug market. now, medicare recently made a proposal that for those specialty drugs they are only going to pay a flat fee. lots of doctors are against that, but i think that's a very good idea. they are not incentivizing doctors to prescribe those
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drugs, they are just saying you just make a choice, whatever that drug is, we're going to pay you a flat fee so that the price of the drug doesn't influence their medical decision. >> dr. dave, quickly, four states looking at hepatitis exposure. what's going on? >> yet again a surgical tech was diverting opiate medicine for his own use and in the process may have exposed 5,000 patients who were having surgery to his malfeasance. we've seen this before. 20 years ago in florida we had the case of kimberly bergalis where there was a dentist who was hiv positive, five years ago there was a surgical tech in near state. so we have a complex set of problems where patients can be exposed to bad actors in the hospital. that's very difficult to control. >> i was going to say there's no way to really get around that. zeke? >> yes. if someone wants to have bad
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behavior and ignore the health of other people it's very hard to control. i mean, 100 years ago we had a woman named tie food mary who passed tie food to everyone she worked with. there is a consistent pattern, switching jobs a lot, each person firing the individual but not reporting them and we really have to try to crack down if someone effects this malfeasance they have to report them so that thor person does not go on in other employment, other hospitals or employment venues and really affect other people. but if someone is going to be a bit psychopathic about it and not care about other people and just care about their drugs there is very little the system can do to prevent that. it's important to know in this case whether in fact anyone was infected. the risks seem very, very low but they are not zero. >> it's not zero. >> the risks are low, particularly for hiv. it's infectious nature is much lower. the good news here is that these patients were probably not exposed and i think we will see
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over time this bad actor, who happened to be a navy veteran, navy corps man who was addicted to drugs, the disease of drug addiction really raised its ugly head yet again. >> dr. zeke emanuel and dr. dave campbell thank you so much. donny and steve, thank you as well. >> uls a pleasure. that does it for us this morning. if you are in austin, texas, be sure to catch joe and his band playing tonight and tomorrow at austin city limits. it's going to be amazing. erika hill picks up coverage on msnbc after a quick break. have a great weekend. people who gave me options. kept me on track. and through it all, my retirement never got left behind. so today, i'm prepared for anything we may want tomorrow to be. every someday needs a plan. let's talk about your old 401(k) today. hey kevin. hey, fancy seeing you here. uh, i live right over there actually.
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good friday morning. i'm erika hill. first up this morning republican leaders admit their nominee may not be named until we get to the convention this summer. the odds are still on donald trump to be that nominee. with four months to go before the convention begins the anti-trump movement is having trouble gaining steam. on thursday two meetings were held, the first among a group of conservative activists led by erick erickson. >> we find donald trump and hillary clinton both unacceptable and want to call for a unity ticket within the republican party now. have those conservative republican candidates who have already dropped out to hold their delegates on the first ballot so donald trump can't get to 1,237 delegates and then after the first ballot try to shape the party

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