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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  September 8, 2016 1:00am-2:01am PDT

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that is our extended broadcast for tonight. we'll look for you at 11:00 eastern time again tomorrow evening. good night from new york. this is a real live aircraft carrier, not a set. it was commissioned in 1943. it survived five come -- kamikaze attacks in world war ii. 50,000 sailors sailed on the ship before it was decommissioned in 1972. over 200 were killed on board the ship. because of the american lives lost here, this ship, this museum, this new york landmark, the site of tonight's commander in chief forum, it's hollowed ground.
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it is an incredible honor to be here tonight, especially with all the service members. it was the first forum where hillary clinton and donald trump squared off on the same stage as presidential nominees. as far as we know, it is the only time they'll do so, aside from the official debates. it's also the only time in the election that the two of them together will face an entire audience of u.s. military veterans who expect direct answers to their direct questions. >> it was a mistake. now, my opponent was for the war in iraq. he says he wasn't. you can go back and look at the record. he supported it. he told howard stern he supported it. he supported it before it happened, as it was happening and he is on record supporting it after it happened. i have taken responsibility for my decision. >> let me go to another veteran. >> he refuses to take responsibility for his support. >> let me go to another question. >> that is a judgment -- >> back in august when you admitted you regret some of the things you said, you said this,
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i can promise you this, i will always tell you the truth. >> it's true. >> so let me read some of the things you said. i know more about isis than the generals do. believe me. was that the truth? >> well, the generals under barack obama and hillary clinton have not been successful. >> do you know more about isis than they do? >> i think under the leadership of barack obama and hillary clinton, the generals have been reduced to rubble. they have been reduced to a point where it's embarrassing for our country. >> we're going to work to make sure that they have the support. they have special forces, as you know. they have enablers. they have surveillance, intelligence, reconnaissance help. they are not going to get ground troops. we are not putting ground troops into iraq ever again, and we're not putting ground troops into syria. we're going to defeat isis without committing american ground troops. so those are the kinds of decisions we have to make on a
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case by case basis. >> so is the plan you've been hiding this whole time asking someone else for their plan? >> no. but when i do come up with a plan that i like and that perhaps agrees with mine or maybe doesn't, i may love what the generals come back with. >> but you have your own plan? >> i have a plan, but i want to be -- i don't want -- look, i have a very substantial chance of winning. make america great again. we're going to make america great again. i have a substantial chance of winning. if i win, i don't want to broadcast to the enemy exactly what my plan is. let me tell you, if i like maybe a combination of my plan and the generals' plan or the generals' plan. if i like their plan, matt, i'm not going to call you up and say, matt, we have a great plan. this is what obama does. we're going to leave iraq or a certain date. >> but you're going to conceive a panel of generals, and you've already said you know more about isis than the generals. >> they're probably be different generals, to be honest with ya. >> that's some of what wrapped up moments ago here at the
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commander in chief forum. we are live now in memorial hall on the intrepid, along with veterans who watched the forum. others are making their way down from hangar three, where the forum just ended. i'm rachel maddow. this is a special edition for the "rachel maddow" show. i'm hitching myself to tonight's event host. i have been a long-time supporter, including a financial supporter, of iava, back to their founding. don't hold it against them. it is a non-partisan organization. they are the leading voice for the 2.8 million americans who have served in our nation's wars in iraq and afghanistan, while the other 99% plus of us did not.
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logistically, clinton and trump have left the intrepid. some of the audience have moved down here with us. so now here's what we want to know. did these veterans here tonight get their questions answered? did the candidates distinguish themselves on these iissues? what did they either leave out or screw up, in terms of what america's veterans most care about right now. we're going to spend the rest of this hour hearing from these veterans directly. also with us tonight, as resources and assets, we have retired surge jack jacobs, a military analyst with nbc and msnbc. a medal of honor recipient. we also have colonel andrew, a historian. his son was killed in iraq. we have a courtney, one of the best producers at nbc news. she's covered the pentagon and national security for nbc for a decade. also nance, a counterterrorism expert. these folks are here tonight to help us basically with the nuts and bolts of policy questions as
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they come up, if need be. because this is politics, we will also hear from a supporter of the trump campaign and a supporter of the clinton campaign, both retired generals. mostly we're doing -- they're both fascinating and interesting people. mostly, the campaigns really want us to do that so we said yes. joining us very soon, in a moment, is going to be -- soon? come on. is going to be my friend paul. congratulations, man. >> thank you. >> paul is ceo and founder of iraq and afghanistan veterans of america. took a long time to get this to happen. >> right. >> starting with getting the candidates to agree. >> right. >> did you get out what you wanted? >> this is a historic night. the country never stopped to focus on the duties and the challenges of being a commander in chief. it wasn't just about this event. the entire national conversation for the last 24 hours has been about veterans, our military, military families.
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all the folks sitting here tonight. i think we accomplished that goal. we set a new precedent. i think the commander in chief forum is here to stay and should be a part of every election from now on. >> you want this to be the first annual commander in chief forum? >> absolutely? >> one of the questions we didn't ask is will they commit to come back here, win or lose, after the election. veterans day is a couple days after the election. here in new york is the largest parade in america. all of us will be here, like we are every year. we hope trump and clinton will come back, put the parties aside, unite and take us forward as americans. that's the example these veterans set. >> since we have this weird situation, where both candidates are new yorkers, they don't have a geographic excuse.
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>> that's the plan all along. we had a vision to have it here a week before 9/11. it was a vision many year ago. we're grateful the candidates agreed to do it. this is a great moment for the veterans and america. this is a conversation that's long overdue and we're finally having it. >> in terms of what the candidates said, how they distinguished themselves, whether people were satisfied with the answers they heard, hallie, let's talk to folks here. hallie jackson. >> mark served in the marine corps. you are a republican. were you satisfied with what you heard from i'll start with donald trump on the other side of the hangar? >> i was satisfied with his outlook to target and help the veterans and really helping out the veterans and what they need. primarily, going after what's affecting one. one thing i wish either candidate would have mentioned was something about the homelessness of veterans. this country is willing to -- we just shipped a couple billion dollars secretly over to iran. we could have used the money wise r here in the united states. there's homeless veterans all over the country sleeping in the streets. we're willing to take in refugees and give them homes, put them in schools and
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everything. we have homeless veterans sleeping in the streets. we have a city decimated like detroit, areas like that, that can be rebuilt. they talked about bring the refugees there. we have to help the veterans first. you can't take care of somebody else until you take care of yourself. >> yeah. you're not saying that you heard something you homelessness, you wish you heard something. >> i wish i heard something. >> we got to a lot of issues. va reform, suicide, military sexual trauma. a lot of stuff that's been off the radar. most importantly, we got to hear from you. we heard from other veterans. all due respect to matt lauer, the veterans are the best part. we hear from more now. that's what we hope we hear throughout the election and afterwards. the opportunity here is to hear from the veterans who haven't been front and center.
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>> obviously, what you're saying about homelessness, didn't get discussed. when they talked about va reform, they're fighting on the issue. you can lament it's partisan fighting but that's how we compete in politics. donald trump is proposing privatizing the va, fighting about whether clinton said the va problems are not as bad as they are made out to be. to hear them compeing wouldn't be heard -- >> it has to be center stage. there are policy differences between them. let's drill down. what is your va secretary? keeping donald or replay him with someone else? what kind of person will it be? how will you deal with the budget, the technology, the failure for women's care? we need three more hours. it was a good start. >> interesting test of literacy on the issues. >> and cultural competency. >> you go fast and the candidates, they name what they
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recognize to be the problems. >> right. >> being able to say, i recognize that you getting out of the defense department and getting assigned to the veterans affairs doesn't necessarily mean that your data and records transfer over. it's a technological problem. it's a sign of literacy, doesn't show you know how to fix it. >> or you can fix it. >> yeah. >> is it fixable? every president says i'm going to clean up the va and every president failed. >> yeah. >> it's the ultimate test in whether or not you can manage the government. the va when it is outstanding is the gi bill. it's amazing and can transform the landscape. when it's terrible, it's phoenix and the scandal from a few summers ago. it's the ultimate test for the president and part of commander in chief. we talked about foreign policy which we talk about normally. we need more veterans policy, which is different. >> to say we're going to do right by vets is an aspiration, not a plan. >> exactly. >> i'm with kristin, who served
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until the army. you did at least one tour, i believe, in afghanistan. >> three. >> i'd be curious about your take as to what you heard from your candidate. you are a leaning democrat, is my understanding. >> that's true. thank you. hello, paul. hello, rachel. i served in afghanistan with the army in 2006, in 2010 and 2012. when i was there, i realized our fight depended not just on our infantry men and traditional front line troops but we also needed enablers who are accomplished at critical thinking, at cultural and language competencies, who were good at relationship building. our fight depended on not just destroying the enemy but also winning over the local populous and protecting the populous. those enablers were women in many cases. they were troops who come from many different religious, ethnic, national origin and background. some of the troops were of transgender identification.
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we have so many troops in our armed forces who are so diverse, and i'm concerned that i didn't hear from mr. trump necessarily -- i wasn't assured that he would put policies in place to ensure that our armed forces are a level playing field for all troops who can meet the standards and serve our nation in the roles that we need to them. >> do you feel like you are hearing that -- by specifying trump there, do you feel you are hearing things that you like more from clinton on that, or from neither of them? >> as donald trump spoke tonight, he was speaking about sexual assault policy, for example, which that is also a signal that our military is not a level playing field, when we still have an epidemic of sexual assault among the troops. but when he spoke, he was not referening any policy i heard.
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not gilibrand's proposal or other policies proposed by the pentagon. i didn't hear anything that was part of the conversation over the last several years. >> he said he wants sexual assault issues adjudicated within the military, not put into the civilian justice system. that was specific. >> right. it's a dividing point, right? kristin is referencing the military justice improvement act, proposed by the senator, taking it out of the change of command. we need follow up questions. this is the follow up question we needed to drill down and find out. also another point, kristin is an incredible activist. there are activists all around the room from all over the country that converged in new york city. it's become like veterans homecoming.
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it's also become a rally cry. these are the questions we need from everybody in america for the next 62 days. >> we have much more in reaction to the commander in chief forum. "the rachel maddow show." we'll be right back. stay with us. >> i intend to make it happen. we're going after baghdadi, the leader. it'll help us focus our attention, just like going after bin laden helped us focus our attention in the fight against al qaeda. >> secretary clinton. >> -- in the afghanistan-pakistan -- >> i always said, shouldn't be there. if we're going to get out, take the oil. if we would have taken the oil, you wouldn't have isis because isis, with the power and the wealth of the oil. >> how are we going to take the oil? >> we would leave a certain group behind, and you would take various sections where they have the oil. plaque psoriasis. be the you who shows up in that dress.
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we have never before
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broadcast this show from a decommissioned aircraft carrier but tonight we've remeied the oversight. coming to you live from the intrepid at the commander in chief forum that just wrapped up with hillary clinton and donald trump. we have an audience of veterans the candidates just faced. they have things to say about what they just saw. please stay with us. what have you done in your
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what have you done in your life that prepares you to send men and women of the united states into harm's way? >> the main thing is i have great judgment. i know what's going on. i've called so many of the shots. i happen to hear hillary clinton say that i was not against the war in iraq. i was totally against the war in iraq.
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look at "esquire" magazine from '04. look before that. i was against the war in iraq because i said it was going to destabilize the middle east, which it has. it has been a disastrous war. by the way, perhaps almost as bad was the way barack obama got out. that was a disaster. >> people talk -- >> my opponent was for the war in iraq. he says he wasn't. you can go back and look at the record. he supported it. he told howard stern he supported it. he supported it before the happen, as it was happening and he is on record as supporting it after it happened. i have taken responsibility for my decision. >> let me go to another veteran -- >> he refuses to take responsibility for his support. >> let me -- >> from the commander in chief forum that wrapped moments ago. joining us here on set at the intrepid is keith kellogg. he was the chief operating officer of the coalition provisional authority in iraq after the initial invasion in
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2003. he's endorsed donald trump. we're also joined by john douglas, who has endorsed hillary clinton. thank you both for being here. >> thank you very much. >> general kellogg, i'll start with you. i'm asking this in part because of your role in iraq. i don't want to litigate donald trump's contemporaneous position on the invasion. what about this insertion by donald trump that if he is commander in chief, there will be new generals. the generals are reduced the rubble. the generals now are how we lost and they're an embarrassment to the country. i don't understand what he meant by that. do you? >> first of all, he didn't say we're going to have all new generals. >> he did say -- >> not all. >> okay, not all new. >> what he is talking about primarily is what he wants the senior officers to do, he'll give mission guidance. he'll keep it simple guidance.
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he's going to have them come back with a plan on how to defeat isis. he said within 30 days, come back with a plan. when i grew up in the military, we were told the best thing we can get are mission-type orders. give us the mission and we'll figure it out. it's like marshall to eisenhower before the invasion of normandy. his guidance was, invade the continent of europe and defeat the axis powers. that's what you need to do. the generals will figure it out. i think what's happened is we haven't had good guidance come down. even somebody on another network, very respected four-star general, who was one of the authors of the surge, said quite clearly, it is a flaw ed strategy. isis is growing. >> when he says it's going to be new generals, is he talking about purge of the top military leadership? >> no. i think what he's talking about -- >> this is a new idea he's stating tonight.
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>> it's almost like he goes back to abraham lincoln. abraham lincoln at the start of the civil war with mcclellan didn't engage robert e. lee, didn't confront confederate forces. he turned to mcclellan and said, if you're not using your army, mind if i borrow it? lincoln went through three generals in the army of the potomac. he settled on mead four days before gettysburg, who won the battle. we have people who take mission-type orders and come with solid, hard solutions. i have no problem with that. >> general douglas, i'll ask for your response on this, and then i have something about what hillary clinton said tonight. the idea that the generals that now have been -- in donald trump's words, reduced to rubble, they're an embarrassment to the country, what did you make of it?
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>> it's another example of his appalling lack of knowledge about how the military works. and his disrespect for the military. i mean, some of the young generals that we have today leading our military are some of the finest we've ever had. we have the finest military in the world today. these men and women have served their country, some of them as long as 30 years. for him to make a remark like that is astounding. secondly, what is he planningen -- on doing? taking the system of the military into his hands so you kiss his ring to get a promotion, to move up in the ranks? this is a very, very dangerous statement that he made. he also made another statement about sexual harassment in the military and the military courts. if i was a military lawyer and i had a person who wanted to be commander in chief get up there and say, there is no military system to deal with these kind of things within the military, i would be appalled. i am appalled.
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>> something that secretary clinton said that struck me as frankly wrong when she said it, she said there would not be u.s. ground troops back in iraq. we will not send u.s. ground troops back in iraq. there are plenty of ground troops in iraq. it's not the combat mission it was before december 2011 but there is a lot of american troops there. 5,000 troops there now. what does she mean? >> what i took that to mean was that she was making a response to mr. trump's comment that he was going to go in and crush isis. in order to do that, he has implied in several speeches around the country is one of the things he'd do is do it with massive force. she clearly believe that is the ground function in that area should be done by our allies over there, using air power, u.s. intelligence and special operations forces. >> general kellogg, into a difference between the use of
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ground forces for isis? >> to start with, there are people here, infantrymen, we have 5,000 troops on the ground and they're in combat. anyone who says they're not, it's a foolish comment. those of us who have been shot at know that. when he talks about having a plan to defeat isis and he wants the plan brought to him within 30 days after the inauguration, he's laying out to the generals, the chairman of the joint chiefs, secretary of defense, you come in with a plan and let me see the plan. he didn't say we're going to go in with massive ground troops. we're going to bomb them to oblivion -- >> what is the distinction between his plan and the plan he's asking for? he said he has a plan but won't tell us. >> wonderful point. after 14 years, i a actually say this. he wants to bring in a plan that will eventually win the fight. we have been fighting for 14
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years. thousands of deaths. >> does he have a plan? >> let me finish, if i may. >> sure. >> 400,000 dead in syria, failed state in labia. he wants them to say, hey, look, we're going to win this fight and i want you to tell me how to win it. does he have a plan? he's never going to tell you what his plan is up front. he shouldn't. i wouldn't. would you? never give away your plan beforehand. >> i spent four years as director of defense programs in ronald reagan's white house. i know what a national security decision directive is. i know what putting together a complex plan that involves our military forces, the state department, the cia and other agencies of the united states. it's a very complex thing. for him to say he has a plan, and he knows more than the generals, and he's going to keep this secret from the american people is ludicrous.
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>> i think they were both dragged into deep waters. both press teams are probably making corrections or clarifies what they said out there. >> yeah. >> frankly, i think most of america is tired of hearing -- with all respect to you -- they're tired of hearing generals debating. we want to hear from the enlisted folks. every campaign gets generals on both sides. it's a proxy war. >> i have 88 and you have 65. >> we have to expand the conversation and talk to the enlisted folks. in the modern military, they are fighting on the front lines. with all due respect to you guys, you know, there weren't any generas kickskicksing in doo when i was in iraq. it's time to expand the situation and -- >> we are going to thank and good night to both of you gentlemen, so we can go away a second and talk to the folks you're talking about. general douglas and general kellogg, thank you both for being here.
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>> thank you, rachel. >> we have more ahead on tonight's special edition of "the rachel maddow show" here from the intrepid. we're hear from the veterans who asked questions, as well as the folks paul was talking about. we'll be right back. stay with us. 20 to 22 people a day are (lock clicks) (dramatic music)
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20 to 22 people a day are killing themselves. a lot of it is they're killing themselves over the fact that they're under tremendous pain and can't see a doctor. we'll speed up the process. we'll create a great mental health division. they need help. they need tremendous help. we're doing nothing for them. the va is really almost you could say a corrupt enterprise. >> secretary clinton, last october you said that surveys of veterans showed they're overall satisfied with treatment and the problems with the va aren't as wise spread as they're made out to be. do you think the problems with the va have been made to seem worse than they really are? >> look, i was outraged by the stories that came out about the va, and i have been very clear about the necessity for doing whatever is required to move the va into the 21st century. to provide the kind of treatment options that our veterans today desperately need and deserve. that's what i will do as
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president. but i will not let the va be privatized. i do think there is an agenda out there, supported byly -- by my opponent to do that. >> that was moments ago at the commander in chief forum. when they have the town halls where the candidates are asked questions by the real person in the audience, i want to know, what did the person in the audience think about? >> stand up with me. he asked the question you saw to secretary clinton. sergeant in the marine corps. three tours in iraq, arabic translator. you consider yourself an independent. did anything you heard from secretary clinton in the answer move the needle for you? >> no. i still think i'm undecided. in fact, the quote from her, that the va problems aren't as widespread as they're made out
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to be was on your show. >> it was. >> i don't know if she answered that question for me. if she thinks -- i guess my question is, does she think the problems in the va have been exaggerated and that it's really not so bad. i think it's an interesting question. i would say the va here in manhattan really isn't that bad. i've had good experiences with it. but i can't speak for the whole country. i've heard bad stories and good stories. i didn't quite get out of her answer. >> she didn't answer it. she didn't answer the question. >> well -- >> she really didn't. >> she answered the same to you as she did to me when she gave the quote. >> a very polical way. she didn't answer the question. is it overblown or not, that was the question. >> she's on privatization. >> some thing the scandal was made up. some think the scandal was exaggerated by the press or it was a manufacturing of some vast conspiracy.
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it was real. republicans said you did it and democrats said, it wasn't our vault and veterans were stuck in the issue. she didn't address it. she hasn't said are they overblown or not. >> i wonder -- >> i think where it's going is where she went both times, when she talked about it with me and to you tonight, is she's saying a twist on what you're saying here. >> right. >> if the va is made out to be inherently flawed, if it is functionally wrong, if it was designed poorly from the beginning and shouldn't exist, it should be a private system instead. we don't want to let problems in the va turn around to people who want to -- turn into an agenda for people who want to get rid of the va. >> it's complicated. almost as complicated as isis sometimes, right? you have to deconstruct the different parts. the reality is quality of care is consistently good. access to care has been consistently bad. if you've seen one va, you've seen one va is a saying.
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what you experience in manhattan is different than omaha. you need data, perspective. that's what we haven't really seen from the candidates. talk about which va is doing well and how you want to replicate it and the poor ones and what needs to change. >> an expert's reporter on this, do you feel either candidate or both were talking about this in a way that reflected a substantive view of the problem? >> trump said we're not privatizing everything but really talking about a massive expansion, a dramatic change in what va would be. and hillary clinton saying, they're talking about privatizing everything, even know the idea of choice and expanding the outside care options really are something that most veterans fafavor. i don't know we learned more but the country might have learned more about the fight.
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there is a fundamental difference. >> we're come back with another veteran who got to ask a direct question of the candidates tonight to find out whether she got her question answered. stay with us here on the intrepid in new york city. anyone wh type 2 diabetes knows how it feels to see your numbers go up, despite your best efforts. but what if you could turn things around? what if you could love your numbers? discover once-daily invokana®.
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we have to defeat isis. that is my highest counterterrorism goal. >> and when referring to a comment that putin made about you, i think he called you a brilliant leader, you said it's always a great honor to be so nicely complimented by a man so highly respected within his country and beyond. >> well, he does have an 82% approval rating according to the different pollsters. >> there are also some dictators who get reelected for the 117% of the vote but we don't usually consider that to be a sign of good character. there was one great moment tonight at the commander in chief forum. a surprise to everybody in the
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room, i think. one of the veterans who was called upon to ask a question herself got a round of applause from the room. that was sue fulton, a member of the first west point class to graduate women. sue is here with hallie jackson. >> one more round of applause. [ applause ] >> i didn't do it by myself. >> former army captain here. you asked that question about what donald trump would do about an undocumented person who wants to serve in the military. do they deserve to stay in the country legally. mr. trump answered your question. were you satisfied with his answer? >> it sounded like he basically said that i feel great about veterans and so i would think about that and that makes a lot of sense. we'd have to look at that. i think his, we have to look at that, to me, isn't a real answer. i was also a little surprised because i expected him to go
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into the whole, we're a nation of laws and we can't have people who are undocumented. it was really kind of mushy. >> he left the door open there. he opened a door that there he's probably correcting or the campaign is clarifying right now. i think it was a new answer that we've never heard him on the record of. >> i was surprised. >> can i go to nbc producer on this, national security producer. a reality check on this, donald trump described the -- this issue as a very special circumstance, saying ts is a very, very special circumstance. as if this is a small number of people we're talking about. people who are undocumented and want to serve in the military. do we have any idea what the number is? >> about 20,000 members of the military right now not u.s. citizens. now, they have to have a green card in order to enlist, to get in, but the military helps them. they fast track them with their citizenship process. since 9/11, there have been 110,000 non-citizens, non-u.s. citizens who served in the
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military. many have gotten their citizenship during their time in the military or afterwards with the help of the military. >> can we go briefly to jack jacobs? jack, is this an issue within the military around which the existing system is seen as falling short or controversial substantially? >> it's not controversial. among the people i know, the view is this. if you are going to enlist in the military and you show up at the end of it with an honorable discharge, you deserve citizenship. >> absolutely. >> that's the beginning of the end of it. no controversy at all. >> interesting. >> true. across the military. i mean, everybody respects it. it's always been a path to citizenship on some levels and upward mobility. it's been a part of the fabric of the modern military. >> i had a conversation with someone on the air once, arguing
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that if somebody serves in the military he should get citizenship. he said, what are you going to do about all the people who want to be in the military? i said, the problem is what? >> it also extends to their parent parents? what if your parents are deported? we have to go beyond that and ask a follow-up question. >> hallie, if you'd follow with a microphone for a second. were there big questions on which you feel there are bill differences between the candidates that didn't get talked about tonight? if you made up your minds about who you are voting for or feeling strongly about the candidates for a reason, you wish you heard more about it because it is a point of distinction. >> we talked a little about this. come out into the aisle with me if you can. i'll have to do this on the fly. tell me your name. come on out here. what was the question for you?
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first of all, do you lean democrat or republican? >> actually, both candidates did discuss one thing, female veterans and their health care. they talked about everything else. not the veterans females. their health care. i notice a lot of question mai -- females, when we do their paperwork, the va tends not to answer their question. what they'll do, they'll give them a pill and send them to another area. by the time they come back, they have issues. >> with the va health service, we have a system designed for an almost entirely male force. >> right. >> for a force that is becoming -- fast becoming much more gender balanced. >> the va was caught flat footed in the beginning of the iraq war. women's bathrooms, okay? there has been progress but not nearly enough. women consistently rate their quality and access to care lower than men.
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i think it is an issue where both candidates have worked it into the rhetoric. they talk about it and understand. for our membership, it's almost 20% female. they've been on the front lines, in combat, being wounded and dying. they deserve the same care that men get. it's still not an issue that's been pushed forward enough. the candidates are starting to understand, they have to work it into their talking points. which is a credit to a lot of folks in the room, men and women. in the last couple years, they've ferociously advocated for a higher level of understanding. >> i'll say as a civilian and as somebody who covers veterans issues and military issues, one of the things i think is a credit to the veterans community is when people bring up issues of women in the military and women veterans, it is as often men who bring it up as women. men and women in the military both have recognized it. this is not a women's issue. it's a credit to the military. >> the military is an extended family. >> yeah. >> we are united. we stick together long after the election. we're all going to come here and march together on veterans day. doesn't matter what your party is.
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the people in this room is what's great about america and they're role models. people in a political campaign when we're divided. the veterans community sticks together. >> we'll take a quick break and be back with more veterans response to the commander in chief forum here tonight on the intrepid. greetings from our studio xe
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greetings from our studio for the night. a decommissioned aircraft carrier called the "intrepid". in 61 days we get a new commander in chief. neither donald trump nor hillary clinton ever served in the military. so all the more reason to hear from our audience and military vets tonight, what they think of the nominees' plans and what they think for the armed forces and caring for veterans. this is going to be good. stay with us.
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-- your plan will be to stop them from killing themselves. >> actually, it's 22. it's almost impossible to conceive that this is happening in our country. 20 to 22 people a day are killing themselves. a lot of it is they're killing themselves over the fact that they can't -- they're under tremendous pain and they can't see a doctor. we're going to speed up the process. we're going to create a great mental health division. they need help. they need help. they need tremendous help. and we're doing nothing for them. the va is almost really you
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could say a corrupt enterprise. >> okay. amazing and very subtle moment there. this veteran asks donald trump about veteran suicide. she says 20 a day. and he says, actually, it's 22 a day. and she goes, mm-mm. and then he comes back and restates it and says it's 20 to 22 per day. so we saw candidate education right there in that moment with that veteran who i would love to hear how you felt about that exchange and whether you got that answer. >> we're joined by rachel frederick. so tell us, because there was a couple of interesting moments there. so we'll start with that particular one. you were an undecided voter. you are an undecided voter. what struck you about donald trump's answer to you? >> it seemed to me like he wants to blame it on access and mental health care and he kept saying they need help. they need help. i think everyone in america needs some type of help. but yet again, we're going to stigmatize the veterans who are suffering with mental health diseases or with ptsd, they need help? [ applause ] so i think that to blame it on an access issue or to blame it
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on the lack of mental health care and especially to blame it on living with chronic pain i don't think really answered the question at hand of what he will do to stop it. i know many veterans, especially in my organization, the disabled american veterans, who live with chronic pain every day. >> yep. that's right. >> so i don't think that's the cause of the veteran suicide. i don't know what we're going to do to stop it. >> i want to turn for a moment to lieutenant colonel andrew basevich. one of the things you have written about is the toll of america's very, very long wars and the distance between civilian experience and understanding and what the military is having, what rachel is talking about is this you, they, them, this distance between these two worlds and how unbreachable it is. how did you hear about that tonight? >> i think the point is a good one. but if i may make a broader comment about the forum, although it's been dynamite in terms of focusing attention on veterans' issues, as a discussion of national security
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issues and the sort of things we want to hear from a prospective commander in chief it's really been a missed opportunity. i mean, the questions they should have been asked on that score they simply were not asked. a couple of occasions the question was posed they evaded it. before we wrap things up tonight, it seems to me it would be useful to surface the things that ought to be discussed when we're trying to understand the qualifications of somebody to be commander in chief. we didn't hear that. >> being asked for a specific plan on isis, for example. >> if i may. to be asked what have you learned? from our unsuccessful wars of the past couple of decades and how would you apply those lessons. how do you feel about the obama administration's plan to spend a trillion dollars modernizing our nuclear weapons. how do you measure military
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power in a cyber age? tell me what your understanding is of the complexities of the syrian civil war. those are items that ought to be on a commander in chief's agenda, and they weren't even asked. >> but also questions like why didn't you serve. answer that. and would you -- why haven't your kids served? would you send your kids? those are the kinds of questions we feel at a very visceral level. there's been a great conversation going on on twitter if you use the #iiva forum. we've been retweeting questions all week long. we're going to keep retweeting them. >> much more ahead tonight from the "intrepid." stay with us. ate to severe plaque psoriasis. be the you who shows up in that dress. who hugs a friend. who is done with treatments that don't give you clearer skin. be the you who controls your psoriasis with stelara® just 4 doses a year after 2 starter doses. stelara® may lower your ability to fight infections and may increase your risk of infections and cancer.
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our coverage of tonight's
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commander-in-chief forum continues now. "way too early" is up next. it was a showdown from the aircraft carrier intrepid. she found herself on the fence and donald trump offered praise for vladimir putin while criticizing president obama's generals. plus, the president is wrapping up a historic trip to laos this morning. we expect a news conference any moment. we'll bring that to you live. reports ryan lochte is about to be suspended after making a splash in rio. sh show. good morning, everybody. it is thursday

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