tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC September 8, 2016 4:00pm-5:01pm PDT
uncertainty. what we do know is hillary clinton has more paths to 270 by a lot. >> yeah. i have never felt the intensity since the first week. we say to you sayonara. >> "hardball with chris matthews" is next. two months left. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews back in philadelphia. it's the day after hillary clinton and donald trump both appeared before veterans and answered questions about protecting our country. donald trump made the most news and stirred up the most heat. he ridiculed american military leaders saying the generals had been reduced to rubble and he suggested he would fire them. he praised vladimir putin, calling him quote, someone who has very strong control over his
country. he said he could tell based on their body language that national security officials giving him his intelligence briefing were not happy with president obama and today, hillary clinton reacted to that. >> he trash talked american generals, saying they had been quote, reduced to rubble. meanwhile, bizarrely, once again, he praised russia's strong man, vladimir putin. even ting the astonishing step of suggesting that he prefers the russian president to our american president. what would ronald reagan say about a republican nominee who attacks america's generals and heaps praise on russia's president? every republican holding or seeking office in this country should be asked if they agree with donald trump about these statements. >> traveling overseas, president obama was also asked about
trump's performance last night. >> i don't think the guy's qualified to be president of the united states and every time he speaks, that opinion is confirmed. and i think the most important thing for the public and the press is to just listen to what he says and follow up and ask questions about what appear to be either contradictory or uninformed or outright wacky ideas. >> for his part, donald trump slammed hillary clinton for her performance. let's watch. >> the whole country saw how unfit she was at the town hall last night, where she refused to take accountability for her failed policies in the middle east, her policies unleashed isis, spread terrorism and put iran on a path to nuclear weapons.
>> joining me now is one of donald trump's top advisers, former mayor rudy giuliani. in recent weeks you said the following about hillary clinton's health. let's watch that. >> she has an entire media empire that constantly demonizes donald trump, fails to point out several signs of illness by her. what you got to do is go online -- >> her campaign and a number of people defending her saying there's nothing factual to the claims about her health. >> go online and put down hillary clinton illness, take a look at the videos for yourself. >> i think hillary's tired. i do. when i saw hillary at the press conference sitting down with the police, with the democrat appointed police chiefs, pretending she's pro-police, one of the most pathetic press conferences i have ever seen. >> what do you mean? >> first of all, she looks sick. >> mayor, you had a good look at hillary clinton last night. i guess you saw the performance by her and then by her opponent, mr. trump, who you back.
did you think there were any signs of illness last night by the former secretary of state? signs of illness? >> no, but i thought there were the day before when she coughed for about, i don't know, 15 minutes and then coughed on the airplane and then spit something up. i don't know what's wrong with her but they kind of hide her -- >> mayor, mayor, mayor, have you got any evidence besides -- do you have any evidence that she's ill? >> i don't. >> what is the evidence? >> the evidence is -- >> you have no evidence she's ill but you say she's ill. you don't think like that. >> chris, chris, let me answer the question, okay? >> sure. go ahead. >> i have eight times online since january where she's had massive coughing spits in which she couldn't complete a speech. i saw her lift orded on to airplanes. i don't know what's wrong with her. on the fbi report it says she can't remember her exit interview from the fbi because of her concussion because she didn't have a memory but she was acting as secretary of state at the time which means we had a
secretary of state who was acting who doesn't have a memory of what she was doing. so these are not illegitimate issues. beyond that -- >> then you were surprised, you must have been surprised then, mr. mayor, to watch her performance last night when she was quite professional, quite smooth. she didn't sweat. she didn't seem to act in any way harbored by illness at all. were you surprised how healthy she looked like night? >> i was surprised how angry she was last night. >> how healthy she was. did you think she was healthy last night? >> look, i don't -- i don't -- i don't know whether she's not -- whether she's sick or she's not. i do know that there are 14, 15 videos of her that show her in very very strange condition. i don't know what it is. but that's not my real issue. my real issue is that the woman exposed thousands and thousands of classified documents which if i exposed one of them when i was in the justice department, they would have put me in jail. that's what i know. >> let's -- okay.
i'm not getting anywhere with you. mr. mayor, you are adamant on this subject. you are adamant. i just want to end this. i want to end this. you are adamant there's a health concern with the candidate for president of the democrat party. you say there's a health condition problem. >> i don't know. >> what are you saying? what are you saying. >> all i do is see all these incidents of her coughing all the time. i don't know what it is. i have seen her in several other situations where she didn't look healthy and then i see in the fbi 302 which was put out on memorial day weekend in print about this big where you needed to use a magnifying glass to read it but i read it twice, i saw something that really concerned me. it said she can't remember her exit interview from the cia because she had no memory for a period of time after she had a concussion. she was secretary of state when she had no memory. now -- >> okay. you think these next debates will be a test of her health? the three hour and a half
debates coming up? will they be adequate to test her health? >> i think these debates coming up are going to be a test of who the american people like better, who they want in their living room more, who they think is better capable of being president of the united states and i don't think a woman who has revealed numerous classified information, doesn't know that the letter "c" means confidential, god almighty, chris, i was in the justice department for three years. i remember my entry -- i can tell you the date of it, i can tell you my exit interview from the cia. i remember "c" in parentheses meant confidential. she thought it meant alphabetical order. if i were cross-examining her i
would have asked her. >> let's go to the comment arkans of your candidate last night. let's watch this point. >> 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, dohe does have an 82% approval rating according to the different pollsters who by the way, some of them are based right here. >> you want to be complimented by that former kgb officer? >> i think when he calls me brilliant i will take the compliment, okay? the man has very strong control over a country. now, it's a very different system and i don't happen to like the system but certainly in that system, he's been a leader far more than our president has been a leader. >> now, there's two ways to address the question of what do you think of putin. one is what do you think of him as a leader in the sense i'm now putting a scale together of toughest world leaders. okay. putin's up there.
in terms of our relationship with him, should we salute him as a great leader or should we be telling the american people we have challenges from this guy who may be threatening nato, may be threatening the baltic states, may be causing us trouble in the middle east instead of saluting his grandeur? >> what you left out of that was he went on to say that all that praise wouldn't mean anything to him in negotiating with putin. plus that day, he gave a speech in which he said he's going to take our navy which is now at world war i levels, he's going to take it up to 350 ships. he's going to take our army up to 6,000 and obama and hillary will take it down to 4200. he will take our marine corps from 23 battalions to 35 battalions and he's going to reestablish a modernize our nuclear program. ronald reagan is going to go into negotiations with putin
from a position of strength. hillary clinton and barack obama gave up the game on day one when they re set the relationship with russia and gave up the nuclear defense of poland and the czech republic. putin took a look at them and said i can push these guys around the world. these are children compared to me. donald trump is not a child. >> like that's a decent argument. you didn't mean ronald reagan. you said ronald reagan a minute ago. you meant donald trump. let me ask you about trump last night. >> because i see a comparison between the two. peace through strength. what you don't grasp is that day he gave a speech in which he said he's going to build the u.s. military up to ronald reagan levels. if we build our military up to ronald reagan levels, putin's not going to push us anywhere because he can't match us. 6%, 5% of our gdp for him to match us, he has to spend 25% of his gdp and it will bankrupt his
country. >> let's talk about something else. >> donald trump -- >> that's all right. >> -- knows how to use leverage in negotiations. hillary clinton and barack obama never being in business, never really negotiating, give away for nothing things they shouldn't give away. they gave away the defense of the czech republic and poland to reset the relationship with russia for nothing. the day they did that, putin, who the kgb killer figured out i can push these guys around the world. they will not -- he will not be able to push donald trump around the world. believe me. this guy is not going to get pushed around. >> you say we have given up our support of the czech republic and slovakia, those countries in poland. why so? because we didn't put monitors there, nuclear monitors. why is that giving up on defending europe? where have we done that? where's obama done that? >> if you read history, if you
read gorbachev's memoirs, he said the key to winning the cold war was they knew they couldn't match us. we have proven with israel that nuclear defense works. >> iron dome works. and star wars was never proven but you're right, it was a brilliant bluff. >> not a brilliant bluff. >> well, we didn't do it. we don't have a shield. nuclear shield. >> let me make the following point. here's why nuclear defense makes sense. i know something about this. a missile can take an airplane out of the air. a better missile can take a missile out of the air. we are technologically ahead of russia and china. we can develop a nuclear shield for the united states for poland, for the czech republic. russia is deadly frightened of that. they have been trying to get us
to give that up since reagan. clinton wouldn't give it up, bush wouldn't give it up. he gave it up on the first day. >> we don't have a strategic defense system. >> ask secretary gates what they get in return for giving up the nuclear shield of poland and the czech republic. know the answer? nada. they got nothing. >> let me ask you one last i have to ask you one last question. i know you don't like this question but i think it's appropriate given you are a major as you just demonstrated, strong surrogate and defender of the candidacy for president of donald trump. couple of his people, including his vice presidential running mate, mike pence, the governor of indiana, and of course, dr. ben carson, have both come out in the last days, hours, practically, and said they believe president obama is a legitimately elected president of the united states. in other words, he was born in the united states. do you confirm that? do you agree with that? >> i confirm that and donald trump now confirms that. >> when did dhe do that?
when did he do that? when did he could that? >> two years ago. three years ago. >> he has now accepted that birtherism was nonsense? when did he do that? >> chris, hillary clinton -- >> he did not do that yet. i'm waiting for him to do it. >> hillary clinton's campaign was the first to bring up the fact that there was a question -- >> where did they do that? where did they do that? >> donald trump has said that -- >> give me the example when they did that. you just said hillary clinton accused -- has hillary clinton ever accused the president of being foreign-born, ever? >> her campaign did in the primary. >> hillary for president campaign did this? >> yes. >> no, it didn't. there's no evidence. >> i was always responsible for -- >> i want to know whether you believe your candidate for president believes he would succeed as legitimate president or not. does he believe he would succeed a legitimate president? >> donald trump believes now that he was born in the united states. but that issue -- >> when is he going to say it? >> that issue was raised originally -- >> when is he going to say that his president is legitimate?
this is a fundamental question, mr. mayor. is the president of the united states legitimate or not. do you believe it? if you believe it, why doesn't your candidate state it? >> i believe it. he believes it. we all believe it. >> he does? are you speaking for him now? are you speaking for donald trump tonight, on live television? are you saying for him, i'm saying he's about to buckle and say finally, that barack obama is a legitimate president of the united states? >> he is the one who got him to finally produce the birth certificate. hillary clinton's campaign first raised this issue. >> okay. >> he picked this up from hillary clinton. >> he subsequently said he does not accept that as the final word. okay. can you commit to your candidate saying within the next 24 hours that president obama's a legitimate president? can you commit for him that he will say that? >> he has said it already. and the fact is -- >> no, he hasn't. >> that's an issue -- >> you are wrong on the fact here, mr. mayor. >> every once in awhile, i am. i think he did. the fact is i believe -- >> i think you're wrong.
okay. but you say, all i can ask you -- okay. >> the point is hillary clinton's campaign is the first one to do it because all she does is engage in negative campaigning. against barack obama and against donald trump. >> first of all, she has never said that. your candidate has on numerous occasions and i'm asking you the final word, we will end this back and forth. can you say authoritatively on behalf of donald trump he was wrong in saying the president was born in another country? can you say that now? >> i believe he picked up on what hillary clinton's campaign said first. obama, obama finally produced the birth certificate and it showed he was born in hawaii. >> therefore? >> therefore he's an american citizen. >> as per donald trump. >> as per donald trump. >> donald trump says so? he's told you that? has he ever told you this privately? that he believes this president is legitimate? >> he has told me that he is proud of the fact that he finally got obama to produce his
birth certificate. >> fine. i think we have it on the record, mr. mayor. i'm glad you came on. i do want to put this to rest. i don't think this is funny. i think when you accuse the president of the united states of being someone who snuck in the country and assumed an identity. that's what trump has been doing for years now. >> not when your opponent in the democratic primary, hillary clinton, who has lied probably 1,000 times over e-mails -- >> let me tell you, there's no record at all on the record right now, we checked this before you came on because one of our senior producers thought you might say this, there is absolutely no record ever of hillary clinton or anyone in her campaign ever saying that president obama is not legitimate. >> her campaign raised it. >> no. >> originally. >> you're wrong. >> i'm not wrong. i'm right about that. >> look, anybody can say anything they want. she can control her own campaign. she's never said so, nor has anyone speaking for her. now you are speaking for donald nding this now because we are spending a lotf time on it but i think it is important. you say this president's legitimately elected president
of the united states and you say your candidate agrees with you. >> and instead of talking about the fact that hillary clinton violated probably about 40 different federal laws, we are talking about this. which is ridiculous. >> okay. thank you. well, it is ridiculous. i'm trying to put the ridiculousness to bed. the president of the united states is the president of the united states. we are trying to pick the next president, not review the birth of the current president. thank you, mayor rudy giuliani. >> let's talk about the next president being someone who would be prosecuted if she wasn't a clinton. i would have prosecuted her. i have seen plenty of people prosecuted for much less, like martha stewart. >> thank you so much. >> know how many false statements she made to the fbi? they are so long i can't count them. >> the fbi had the right to review that. they did and found her not in any criminal violation. thank you, mr. mayor. we have to go on. it's a long show. joining me is "usa today" washington bureau chief susan page, msnbc terrorism analyst malcolm nance.
susan, thanks for joining us. you cover all kinds of things. what do you make of that, what we just heard? >> i think that mayor giuliani was misstating some facts. in fact, donald trump was asked about whether he stood by his birther comments, birther questions about president obama just this week by reporters, he declined to respond. so far as i can recall, i haven't had a chance to research this fully, i have never heard donald trump say definitively that he accepts that barack obama was born here. he has dropped the issue as he's become the nominee and moved on but so far as i know, he's never made that kind of statement. i'm also not aware and again, it would be good if i had time to research this, i'm not aware of hillary clinton ever raising questions -- >> no. we have evidence. politifact ruled on this, a very legitimate organization, they said neither hillary clinton officially nor anyone in her campaign said it. anyone can join in any chorus they want. all she can control is her own
campaign. malco malcolm, one reason why african-americans especially have a problem with this candidacy of donald trump is because of what he's continued to say and has never taken back, his charge that the president was illegitimately elected by the american people, he somehow snuck into the country under some sort of strange guise and managed to convince everybody he was born in hawaii when he was not. this went on for months, it has never stopped. i would like to end it. rudy giuliani almost ended it but wouldn't say he could speak for the candidate yet tonight. except to say he believed it and he thought trump had stopped doing it but trump hasn't stopped doing it. he has not changed as susan just explained. >> right. well, you know, birtherism is the ultimate form of racism, when you consider the first black president of the united states, by claiming he's an illegitimate entity, that he had no right to even be in the united states because he was born in another nation, did a convoluted plan that took decades which involved his
mother to show that he was not actually allowed to be here in the face of all the investigative arms of the united states government, it's just a form of -- it's beyond political. it's just racist. >> i think let me ask you this, susan. why do you think rudy giuliani, he's not comfortable with the issue. he's very aggressive but not comfortable defending birtherism, he said he doesn't believe in it. dr. ben carson doesn't believe it. mike pence, trump's running mate, doesn't believe it. but trump won't give on this. what's that about? >> well, i don't know. i don't know why trump doesn't give on this. maybe it's because he's staked out a position he doesn't want to back off on it. i will tell you, rudy giuliani was pretty aggressive in pressing questions about hillary clinton's health and this is yet another case where there is no evidence that there's a problem with hillary clinton's health. she had a coughing fit. big deal. we will have a good opportunity to see the stamina of both candidates in three 90-minute debates so this is another case
of pressing an argument on which there doesn't seem to be any factual basis and i think this is one of the things a lot of americans find so frustrating about politics in general and this election in particular. >> yeah. there's an old movie line in anatomy of a murder, jimmy stewart movie, where the lawyer in the case said to the jury don't think of a blue cow. of course you do think of a blue cow. suggest something like he snuck in the country, blah, blah, blah, or suggest that hillary has a coughing problem, some serious health problem, get that into the power of suggestion, get it out there so some people on her side can at least start spreading it around. it's what they did to dukakis when he was accused of having psychological counseling. reagan pushed that out there. this is an old dirty trick. thank you, susan and malcolm. coming up, about the intelligence briefing. donald trump says the intelligence officials who briefed him on national security evidenced an unhappiness with
president obama. we will ask the former director of the cia about trump's claim and what to make of it. plus a big campaign blunder for libertarian candidate gary johnson. you probably know it by now. did johnson kill himself politically with his response or lack of it to a question about syria from mike barnicle this morning? hillary clinton response to republican party chairman reince priebus hitting her for not smiling during last night's forum. is secretary clinton being held to a different standard? she's supposed to smile about national security? since when is mr. priebus mr. happy face? finally, my election diary for today and where this race now stands after last night's commander in chief forum here on nbc and msnbc. ♪ when is your flu shot more than a flu shot? when it helps give a lifesaving vaccine to a child in need. ♪ thanks to customers like you,
walgreens "get a st. give a shot." program has helped provide 15 million vaccines through the un foundation. it's tt easy to make a difference. ♪ walgreens. at the corner of happy and healthy. we're still two and a half weeks until the first big presidential debate but the first voting actually begins tomorrow, believe it or not. the battleground state of north carolina begins early voting
tomorrow with the availability of mail-in absentee ballots. we have new polling by the way from the state now. let's check the "hardball" scoreboard. according to a new poll from suffolk university, donald trump has ahree point lead over hillary clinton in north carolina. trump 44%, clinton 41% with libertarian gary johnson a distant third. those numbers are reversed in a new quinnipiac poll in the state. in that poll it's clinton with the lead over trump 47-43. we will have more swing state polls later in the show. where we explore. protecting biodiversity. everywhere we work. defeating malaria. improving energy efficiency. developing more clean burning natural gas. my job? my job at exxonmobil? turning algae into biofuels. reducing energy poverty in the developing world. making cars go further with less. fueling the global economy. and you thought we just made the gas. ♪
welcome back to "hardball." let's review what donald trump said in nbc's commander in chief forum last night, particularly when it comes to russia and that classified intelligence briefing he received as the republican nominee. last night, trump said that he could tell the intelligence officials were quote, not happy, with president obama.
here's trump. >> what i did learn is that our leadership, barack obama, did not follow what our experts and truly, when they call it intelligence, it's there for a reason, what our experts said to do. >> how? >> i was very very surprised. in almost every instance. i could tell, i am pretty good with the body language, i could tell they were not happy. our leaders did not follow what they were recommending. >> here's how hillary clinton today reacted to trump's characterization of those briefings. >> i think what he said was totally inappropriate and undisciplined. i would never comment on any aspect of an intelligence briefing that i received. >> when you saw donald trump heaping more praise last night on russian president vladimir putin, citing putin's popularity in russia and calling him a better leader than president
obama. >> he does have an 82% approval rating. the man has veryong str control over a country. now, it's a very different system and i don't happen to like the system but certainly, in that system, he's been a leader far more than our president has been a leader. >> when it comes to polling in this country, the u.s., putin is among the most unpopular figures nbc has ever polled. according to an nbc/"wall street journal" poll in may, just 8%, one in 12, say they have a positive view of putin while 59% say they have a negative view. i'm joined by an expert, leon panetta, former cia director and former secretary of defense who supports hillary clinton for president. first of all, the body language, is this trump's way of getting across something about the experts not agreeing with obama, not respecting, without giving away a briefing? why would he talk about -- what is body language in the context of a briefing by professionals? >> you know what, i have no idea what he's reading into that
presentation. all i know is every intelligence briefing i have ever had is done by professionals, they provide objective intelligence. as a matter of fact, it would be a violation of their responsibility and tradecraft if they even suggested anything related to whether policy decisions were right or wrong. so my view is that trump didn't hear any of that. he was basically listening to the intelligence and the intelligence is probably pretty rough intelligence about what's going on in the world, and he decided to read into that the failures that he sees in the policies that were applied. but this is a guy who as president is going to get a pdb every morning, an intelligence briefing, every morning. he's got to listen to what's being presented. he can't spend a lot of time trying to figure out what the body language is of those making the presentation. >> what did you make of -- i got a comment on this but i want to
hear from you, an expert, because you dealt with the world as defense secretary, as pentagon chief. what do you make of his love affair with putin? he seems to clearly respect his leadership swag as if he's like judging best dictator in the world contest. like he's not looking at him as a guy who is a potential adversary of ours, where most americans do see him as a potential adversary. what do you think he means when he says he's a better leader than obama? >> you know, i think this is the real estate developer coming out in trump, that you know, he loves to sit down with people, even though he may not like them if they're tough and they're good business people, then he loves to sit down and talk with them. he's applying that same kind of standard when it comes to somebody like putin. putin is an adversadversary. putin is somebody who has not only invaded the crimea and gone into the ukraine, gone into
syria, continues to come at us in a lot of different ways. he's an adversary. as president of the united states, trump has to be smart enough to keep his feet on the ground and be able to weigh this guy based on what he's doing to the united states, and protect the united states interests. he can't get enamored by th fact that putin is nice to him and plays to his ego. >> it's almost like dick nixon talking about john connelly. i like the cut of his jib rather than how are we going to deal with this guy. >> you and i know politics, politicians love to be praised by people but when you're president of the united states, you got to be very careful about being praised by putin or the head of north korea or saddam hussein, because you got to protect the united states' interests first and foremost. >> let's talk about that.
because i think you are a moderate centrist, but you are pretty close to the center in terms of national security. i always wondered how you see hillary clinton because my hunch about her, watching her from a bit away, is that she's going to be a notch to the right of obama in terms of readiness to use force. is that correct? >> chris, i think that at least my experience in the national security council and dealing with a number of decisions that had to be made, that she is somebody who feels strongly about advancing our interests and if it requires that we use some of our power in order to be able to do that, i think she's willing to do that. does that mean she's not cautious, no. she is cautious. she's thoughtful. she uses good judgment. but when it comes to protecting our interests, i think she's a
little more willing to try to engage in the kind of power moves that you sometimes have to do if you want to protect the united states' interests. >> compared to president obama because i know you respect president obama but in your book you said he avoids the battle, complains and misses opportunities. where would she be compared to him? >> for example, she has said she would increase the number of air strikes in syria, she's talked about establishing a no-fly zone in syria, she's talked about adding additional special forces on the ground, she's talked about trying to increase our intelligence capabilities. so what you're looking at are some of the key obama steps but she would just be a little more energetic in terms of the effort to try to go after isis. >> that's very helpful.
thank you. that's the way i saw it as a hunch but you know as an expert. former secretary of defense leon panetta. up next, a serious stumble by a candidate who needs every break he can get. libertarian gary johnson blanks after being asked about a battleground city in syria. from long island to buffalo, from rochester to the hudson valley, from albany to utica, creative business incentives, infrastructure investment, university ptnerships, and the lowest taxes in decades are creating a stronger ecomy and the right environmt in new york state for business to thrive. let us help grow your company's tomorrow- today at business.ny.gov
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welcome back to "hardball." it's not just the major party candidates who are on the defensive today. libertarian candidate gary johnson, who did not participate in last night's forum, was asked by my colleague mike barnicle earlier this morning what we do about a battle front in syria if he was commander in chief. >> what would you do if you were elected about aleppo? >> about? >> aleppo. >> and what is aleppo? >> you're kidding. >> no. >> aleppo is in syria. it's the -- it's the epicenter of the refugee crisis. >> okay. got it. got it. well, with regard to syria, i do think that it's a mess. i think that the only way that we deal with syria is to join hands with russia to diplomatically bring that at an end. >> since mid-2012 aleppo has become a key battleground in the
syrian uprising. johnson's response immediately went viral today and comes at a time when the governor is trying to reach the 15% in the polls that he can be allowed to be included in presidential debates at the end of the month. for more i'm joined by democratic strategist and professor of politics at usc, bob shrum. this is one of those moments where a candidate is asked a question and comes up blank. >> he certainly did come up blank. i was watching and i was tempted to say that donald trump is the second worst informed person in this campaign. it is unbelievable that a serious candidate and he wants to be a serious candidate for president, wouldn't know what aleppo is. worse than that, if you listen to the rest of his answer, it was pretty incoherent, pretty confused. it said we have to join hands with russia and that will solve all this. guess what? the administration's been trying to do a deal with russia for a long time. it's not been able to do that. i don't think gary johnson knew what he was talking about at all, in addition to forgetting
aleppo. by the way, i don't think he's -- >> forgetting? i'm not sure forgetting's the right word. are you sure he knew about it? i think there's something going on here. i don't read everything in the papers. there's a lot of things i know nothing about. i admit it. but i think we have a problem with sarah palin, wihat newspapers she read. if you don't read the newspapers, if you don't recognize names in the news, you got a problem. jack kennedy said the newspaper reading habit is key to leadership. you have to have your eyes on what's going on in the world as an instinct. you can't just do it because you try to do it. you have to really want to do it. does this show that the former governor doesn't keep an eye on the news? >> i think you're right about him. i don't think he knows what's going on in syria. i don't think he's serious about following foreign policy. i think he's kind of a
libertarian person who is out there running for president. he knows he's not going to get 15% and get into those debates. he wants to get 5% so lord help us, the federal government will finance the libertarian party in 2020. that's his aim. but that was a stunning moment. you don't know when they're going to come, you can't predict them. they happen in every campaign. that was just unbelievable. >> we are still hoping to get him on the air soon. that would be the governor of new mexico, former governor of course, of massachusetts, bill weld, they are running as the libertarian team. they do have an outside shot at getting into the debates. thank you for your expertise. up next, let's get back to rudy giuliani, what he said at the top of the show, that donald trump now believes that president obama was born in the u.s. that's a big one. it's been a long time coming, if it's come. hey, searching for a great used car? yeah! you got it. just say show me millions of used cars for sale at the all new carfax.com.
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moments ago here on "hardball" that trump, who led the birther movement, now believes president obama was in fact born in the u.s. let's watch. >> donald trump believes now that he was born in the united states. but that issue -- >> when's he going to say it? >> that issue was raised originally -- >> when is he going to say that this president is legitimate? this is a fundamental question, mr. mayor. is the president of the united states legitimate or not. do you believe it? if you believe it, why doesn't your candidate state it? >> i believe it, he believes it, we all believe it. >> he does? are you speaking for him now? are you speaking for -- are you speaking for donald trump tonight, on live television? are you saying for him, i'm saying he's about to buckle and say finally, that barack obama is a legitimate president of the united states? >> he is the one who got him to finally produce the birth certificate. >> let's bring in the "hardball" roundtable. cornell belcher, ruth marcus and michael steele, former chair of the rnc and msnbc political
analyst. michael, you first. all three of you, i want to hear from you all. rudy giuliani, under a little pressure there, came out and said trump has changed his position, he now believes the president is legitimate. he didn't sneak in the country, there wasn't a conspiracy, birtherism was nothing, he's a president like any other president, dutifully and constitutionally elected. that's new. >> what does it say that that's new? >> what does it say about trump? >> but no, i think you created a box and the mayor found himself in it and it will be interesting to see what's going on right now, whether or not in the next 12 hours, 24 hours, there's going to be more on this from donald trump himself. i'm sure the press tomorrow will pick up your lead on this and ask the question. i think for donald trump, though, just looking at it from a political standpoint, given the efforts that he's been making to have a conversation with african-americans, i know that they have said that's a
problem for us. we need to know where you are on this, because we see our president, not as a black president, but our american president, as an american. how do you see him. i think that this is an important development in that step. >> ruth, it's been coming this week because pence, his running mate, said he believes the president was american-born. of course, dr. carson, who has been running with him, campaigning with him, also said so. i said if those two guys are willing to do it, are you, mr. mayor. he said i am. okay, is your candidate. he said yes. we got it on the record. >> rudy giuliani has read donald trump's mind and said something that donald trump has not been willing to say which is that apparently donald trump now believes that president obama was born in america. but as much as the african-american community has wanted to hear it, as much as trump wants to curry favor with them, he has been absolutely religiously resistant to saying it. every time he's questioned about
it, what he says is i don't talk about that anymore. he doesn't say yes, he was. >> cornell, what do you think? >> i think they're trying to have it both ways, chris. i think first, rudy giuliani is unhinged but he's part of an unhinged sort of movement that's going on. he will say whatever he wants to say whenever they want to say it and think they will get away with it. that's exactly why americans don't like what's going on right now. no, donald trump is not going to say it because the base of the republican party doesn't want him to say it. >> that's a prediction. >> he will lose support. >> you are a pollster, not a predictor. you don't know what he will say tomorrow. i don't either. i bet through will be questions tomorrow. does rudy giuliani speak for you, because he's your surrogate. if he says you said something, you better say it yourself or say he's not your surrogate anymore. >> put him in a box. you put him in a box. >> thank you. the roundtable is staying with us. still ahead, a slew of new battleground polls.
althy, free, the world before me, the east and the west are mine. the north and the south are mine. all seems beautiful to me. well, here's more polling from the three biggest brauld states. once again, let's check the "hardball" scoreboard. according to new polling, donald trump has a one-point lead in ohio. it's trump, 46-45. next to pennsylvania where clinton is up by five points, 48-43 in the keystone state. finally to florida, all tied up, 47-47. clinton and trump both at 47,
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we're back with the "hardball" round table tonight. people are going to tell me something i don't know. starting with cornell belcher. >> chris, you may not know this, but as a political consultant in washington, d.c., what you don't want to have is to wake up one morning and see a confidential memo that you wrote to your client in the pages of "the new york times." it's not a good thing. it's about the cynicism of young voters, and not so much aimed at one person. >> okay, ruth. >> even while we're debating whether the current president of the united states was actually born in america, the transition teams for the two people who might be the next president of the united states are working behind the scenes not just to present the candidates once elected, with cabinet secretary, but with slates of under cabinet
officials so we don't have another home alone phenomenon in the obama administration where people are not confirmed for a long time. we'll see how that works. >> they're doing the draperies already. michael? >> despite what we've heard and seen at the top line about the inability to really pull the grassroots campaign by the trump campaign, there's a great deal of coordination under way amongst the states and around the country that is getting boots on the ground and organization in place that is going to make this race a little more competitive than people thought originally. >> thanks so much, cornell, ruth, and michael. i'll have something to say in just a moment about what just happened on this show tonight. we'll be right back. if we consolidate suppliers what's the savings there? so should we go with the 467 horsepower? or is a 423 enough? good question. you ask a lot of good questions... i think we should move you into our new fund.
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>> election diary thursday, september 8th. you just heard it here tonight, rudy guiliani, the number one surrogate for republican presidential nominee now says trump no longer believes that president obama was born overseas, that he was born in this country. and that's news. we'll see in coming days whether trump confirms what his surrogate said tonight. i put this question to mr. giuliani tonight because in recent days both governor mike pence, donald trump's running mate and dr. ben carson both, he's also a top supporter, both said president obama was born here and is a legitimate president. as of tonight, the only person in the trump campaign who has yet to follow suit is the candidate. that's "hardball" for now.
thank you for being with us. "all in with chris hayes" starts right now. >> tonight on "all in" -- >> last night was yet another test, and donald trump failed yet again. >> clinton and trump trade blows the day after. >> the whole country saw how unfit she was at the town hall last night. >> tonight, from the combo plan on isis -- >> if i like maybe a combination of my plan and the generals' plan, or the generals' plan. >> to lauding a russian strong man. >> he does have an 82% approval rating. >> to top secret body language. >> i'm pretty good with the body language. >> what did america learn about donald trump's fitness to be president? >> and why donald trump is doubling down on its putin praise. >> i think it's inarguable that putin has been a stronger leader in his country than president obama has been in this country. >> the clinton response to being told to smile more, by the head