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tv   The Place for Politics 2016  MSNBC  October 1, 2016 9:00am-10:01am PDT

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hello, everyone. i'm ari melber in new york. here is what's happening. 38 days now to the presidential election. today both sides unleashing new lines of attack, and for the first time getting a real look at the impact this debate may have had on the scientific polling numbers. also, new word today from
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donald trump staunchest supporters going after the former miss universe. of what's the message they're spreading. and jamaica preparing for the worst. we have a monster now category 4 hurricane that's headed for the island nation, and expected to turn towards the u.s. in dave. we have details, as well. and the biggest mystery from the deadly train crash in new jersey. why hasn't one group of investigators questioned even the engineer yet? now we begin with the politics as promised. new reaction from trump supporters on this continuing fallout over his comments about former miss universe. here's what two of them told my colleague just this morning. >> any time we're not talking about this weak economy, this failed war on terrorism, the fact that washington needs to be up-ended and we need to change the way things are happening from a political sense is the day that we're losing on the campaign trail. and, you know, hillary clinton was smart to kind of bring this off and to change the topic, to some extraneous issue.
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and i'm glad today that we're back to talking about the central issues. >> no. it hasn't caused the damage. you know, all it's been is just a sideline issue. we're back on the on track here. i didn't read any tweets this morning. i think donald trump has dealt with the issue, and it's time to move on. >> there you have it. donald trump trying to move on by opening up a new line of attack today. he's telling the "new york times," it is time for hillary clinton to answer for bill clinton's infidelities. here is the new quote. hillary was an enabler and attacked the women who bill clinton mistreated afterward i think it's a serious problem for them and something i'm considering talking about more in the near future, end quote. when asked about his own very public infidelitieinfidelities, in trump's first marriage, end, quote, i don't talk about it. i wasn't president of the united states. end quote. trump also hammering clinton on the trail in michigan. >> mr. president, will you
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pledge not to issue a pardon to hillary clinton and her co conspirators for their many crimes against our country and against society itself. will you make that pledge? >> the fbi, of course, never charged clinton or any others connected to the e-mail scandal with any federal crimes, that the apparent reference trump making there. hillary clinton in florida yesterday, hatching up her attacks on trump about what she calls his rhetoric against women. >> and my opponent's only infrastructure plan is to build a wall. i loved it. he went down to mexico and he choked. he's sitting with the president of mexico, and he doesn't even bring it up. he finds it a lot easier to insult women than talk to the president of mexico about building a wall! >> a fiery clinton there, and here's one reason she may be
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fired up. some battleground state polling here. florida, michigan, nevada, key states and clinton with a post debate bump. you can measure it ahead in florida by four. michigan by seven. nevada of by about six. meanwhile, three days away, hard to believe, but in just three days, the vice presidential nominees square off in their one and only debate. clinton off the campaign trail, trump in pennsylvania later tonight and we have live reports from the campaign trail, because there's no rest for the weary. of nbc's jacob rascon in pennsylvania. kristen welker holding it down in our bureau in washington. jacob, you're farther away than the rest of us, so you getting to first. what have you got? >> reporter: so here in pennsylvania, he's been here several times in the past month alone i've been here with him. even though he was behind by double digits during the summer, right now he's only behind by a few points. the campaign really believes he has a shot here, and again, a big rally planned. we're here with one of his supporters, june, and i'll
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preface this by saying, june, for you, the most important issue may be national security. i guess you would like him to be talking about that issue. this week he seemed distracted. would you concede that he was distracted this week, and if so, how does he get back on track? >> absolutely i think he was distracted. i think he has to stay on topic and i think he has to stop tweeting. i don't like to see it when he has these emotional stoutburs. he has to think about what the people want here, want answers. we don't hear a lot of policy on the democratic side, i don't. so i would want him to stay on the teleprompter. >> reporter: you were telling me it worries you to think of a clinton presidency, especially as far as national security. if you could give trump advice, if he were watching this, what would you tell him to do? >> well, i would think i would want him to think about national security and staying on that. i mean, what i fear is, you know, the unpredictability of terrorists and how -- i'm going
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to have to worry about my kids being at different venues, and since, you know, the terrorists can be on our soil, i don't want to have to worry about that. so i want to feel secure. i want my family to feel secure. >> reporter: we're only less than 40 days away. can he do that? can he stay on topic? >> if he stops tweeting. if he doesn't take -- if somebody baits him -- if he keeps on topic of how does this affect american people. if they're talking about history with women, on either side, i think that's totally immaterial. i think that he needs to stay on what the people want to hear about today. >> reporter: thank you very much, june. and i would note, ari, that 9 in 10 supporters i've talked to since the debate will say something similar. that they wish that he would -- even though they like him, maybe tough, like him as the counter puncher, they want him to get back on another topic. ari? >> appreciate it. great to hear directly from a trump voter, and always interesting to know when everybody agrees.
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less twitter is the best twitter. thank you very much, jacob rascon. we turn now to the clinton campaign. nbc's kristen welker in washington, d.c. i assume you have less voter reaction about her emotional tweets, because she doesn't tweet that often. here in the news room, we always keep track. she signs it h when she tweets, but usually her staff. very different style campaign. what are you hearing today? >> reporter: well, the clinton campaign thinks they threw out the bait and that donald trump took it. i think even they are surprised by the fact that this has gone on for five days now. this was, of course, brought up, the alicia machado incident by secretary inn athe debate. it got under donald trump's skin then. he went on fox news the next day, doubled down on his criticism of alicia machado in 1996, and we woke up yesterday to this tweet storm, which is what you heard that supporter there reacting to. really fascinating stuff, by the way, that jacob is getting there from his supporters. because typically when donald
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trump is mired in a controversy, his supporters stand by him. they don't question his tactics. this feels a little bit different. you see them actually questioning his tactics. they want him to get back on message. well, of course, the clinton campaign is loving this, because it's helping secretary clinton. so to poke fun at him overnight, secretary clinton's campaign sent out a series of tweets at 3:00 a.m., although a very different subject matter, ari. i'll read a few of them. one says, it's 3:20 a.m., as good a time as any to tweet about national service. hundreds of thousands at applications than spots. horrible exclamation mark. from 75,000 members to 250,000 members. of course national service was secretary clinton's theme on the campaign trail yesterday so they're having a little bit of fun with that. the campaign confirming it was an east coast staffer who sent out those tweets in real-time. as you pointed out at the top, secretary clinton has opened up a lead in key states like florida and six points in nevada and, of course, michigan as
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well. so the campaign likes where they're headed. at the same time, still trying to stay focused because she has another important debate. >> to follow up on one point you made. as you know from spending so much time at the campaigns, a lot of what they're doing is trying to pick topics. they try to pick topics that are better for them, and they often lobby us and everyone else to talk about their chosen topics. what you're reporting today, and some of your analysis suggests, the clinton campaign couldn't have an easier component in the sense the convention, they picked the topic of the khan and a gold star family. this topic approximate how you treat a former beauty pageant queen, this is four days running. at what point does this asymmetrical success not dawn on the trumps, in your view? >> reporter: well, and that's what is so stunning. because it is a clear distraction. it's a clear attempt to knock him off message. and he has taken the bait.
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and what the clinton campaign has done is -- the day after the debate, of course, they amachado ought out talking to the press, did a number of interviews. so you would think that after this latest incident, team trump would sort of hunker down and have a conversation about how to respond. differently, next time, because there is no doubt at the next debate she will probably try to pull off a very similar tactic. one more point i'll make, ari, it's important i think from the perspective of a lot of democrats and secretary clinton supporters, she doesn't get too mired, she continues to talk about what she's going to do, her policy positions, particularly when it comes to things like college affordability and jobs, which matter to those all-important young voters, a group she is struggling with right now, ari. >> exactly. kristen welker, thank you as always. we'll seal you again on the trail. political reporter for real clear politics, caitlyn huey burns. let me play for you a little sound of hillary clinton directly speaking about trump.
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this was specifically those middle of the night tweets, which raised a question, what is he doing, how does he manage his time? take a listen. >> i mean, his latest twitter meltdown is unhinged. even for him. it proves yet again that he is tem temperamentally unfit to be president and commander-in-chief. >> the crowd there likes it, but this segment we were talking to, a trump voter on the ground in pennsylvania, who said she wants to see fewer, quote, emotional outbursts from trump on twitter. >> trump supporters and how they are a very cohesive group. there is little that trump could do to turn them away. but when you look at polling, pugh recently did a poll that showed that a significant chunk of trump supporter think their biggest concern with his candidacy is the issue of temperament.
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so you have among his supporters people who want him to tone it down and focus on the issues. and we heard that a lot, actually, from his surrogates throughout the week. people like ben carson, and even newt gingrich, kind of girding him to stick to the issues. so the reason why this attack by -- by this bait-throwing by the clinton campaign was so well orchestrated was because it really talked to that issue of temperament the. and got a donald trump to -- kind of underscored their argument against him. and made it challenging to, you know, really cross that threshold of plausibility on the presidential stage. >> neal? >> i agree withhat caitlyn has said and this issue of temperament is a huge one. of course, the issue with ms. machado also goes to donald trump's problems with women voters. he has struggled badly, particularly with white women who normally support the republican. in a presidential election. so all of this is pretty troublesome.
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but it is this issue, and you mentioned it, ari, at the top. this issue of fighting on territory that would appear he can't possibly win. the clinton campaign will be delighted because there is no way for donald trump to get the upper hand despite his apparent instinct to keep fighting on this ground. >> you mentioned that. and his instinct to constantly explain and fix and revise. and those are skills that, by the way, may be very useful in performance as a tv star, which he was. in business, where want to be able to explain away failures. it's not clear that those are great leadership qualities for the presidency, nor what he's doing right now, a great campaign tactic. take a listen to him. stretching out the discussion over the debate. if you are talking about what's wrong with the debate and what was unfair to you in the debate, you probably are giving off the weak sense that you didn't do well. here he is, still talking about
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the microphone. >> working that microphone was a ohellf a lot more difficult than working crooked hillary clinton, that i can tell you. they just announced, it just came out a little while ago, that the microphone in the auditori auditorium, the big room was defective. >> neal, did they announce the microphone was defecti deif he ? who are they? >> they did not say the microphone was defective, they did acknowledge there was an issue in the auditorium with the audio from donald trump. the bigger point here, ari, is we are approximately five weeks from a presidential election. every candidate or each candidate needs to be thinking, how do i increase my support? and that needs to be their focus each day. i just don't see any plausible reason to assume that people will say, oh, donald trump's microphone might have been a bit
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dodgy, i'm now going to vote for him and i wasn't persuaded to do that before. it just doesn't seem that will add anything to the support that he already has, even though he feels this compulsion to keep making the argument. >> yeah, caitlyn, speak to that compulsion. and, again, the apparent evidence that he doesn't really prepare, strategyize or thinking through some of these things. these seem much more like the emotional, you know, reaction of the player on the field. not a -- someone who has thought through what they really want to convey to voters in these key states. >> right, absolutely. i agree with everything niall said. i would also argue, the debate is significant, but the 24/48 hours after the debate and really the days, you know, throughout the week are really important in terms of shaping your message. so even if you lose the debate, which by a public polling shows that most americans think that clinton won, even if you lose, you use those days afterwards to get back to your original message. and get back to more favorable
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turf. so, you know, lots of trump supporters wanted trump to kind of stick with the argument of clinton is a, you know, creature of washington. she's been there for a long time. he's the agent of change. and instead he went for several days continuing to talk about miss universe, talking about bringing up the clinton -- former bill clinton -- former president bill clinton's inif i had seatbelts and all of these issues that republicans don't think are winning for the republican party. and we're here on saturday now, still talking about this, because donald trump is still talking about this. >> can't stop, won't stop. niall and caitlyn, thank you both. appreciate your time. next up, did donald trump win the primary but start a war? the "new york times" magazine has a report on the heartburn inside the conservative media over the trump's nomination and the man who wrote it, robert draper, joins us next. stay tuned.
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♪ no one denies donald trump is good at getting press but that doesn't mean he gets along with the press. for a campaign that began with months of free media valued at hundreds of millions of dollars, trump has found himself lately battling with objective fact-checkers and tussling with holdouts in the conservative press. the "new york times" magazine has a report making waves right now on the civil war in conservative media over trump's candidacy. reporter and author robert draper embedded with anybody who is anybody this story. using george will and, of course, the donald himself joins me now. good to see you, robert. everyone knows by now that trump does work the press, even while some reporters complain about him. what did you find here in your report that's new? >> well, i think among other things -- what i used, ari, was
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the conservative media, and the war that's going on with them as a kind of window on to the greater fracture within the republican party, one that has pitted -- normally very acquiescent bedfellows such that they have become antagonists. we have seen people like eric ericson and ann coulter and erin ingram who normally got along, opposite sides of the trump line and george will, temptly very opposite having in common their distaste for donald trump. now you're right, ari, that trump for all of his professed disdain of the media does a great job of working them. there are some who just simply have refused to be worked. erickson and george will being prominent examples. >> yeah, let me jump in. i want to get to that. but before we get to who it doesn't work on, you really report in detail how it works. and that there's more effort
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there than people may realize. donald trump being canny behind the scenes. many members of this conservative press have visited trump's invitation, joining the resident gatsby for steak and lobster on the patio where trump squints and appears to listen intently while his guests dispense political wisdom. though it's never clear whether he's actually interested in it, simply flattering his guests or sizing them up. and you write, when i dined with him this spring, trump asked me eagerly how i liked his odds and laer later on the campaign trail i asked him elicit the same from random stragglers on the rope line. what are you getting at there? >> trump is a serial flatterers and guys like sean hannity who have made millions and millions of dollars in the media, but nonetheless don't have any kind of power within establishment washington. see trump as a guy who in the immediate will take his
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strategic council and lead them -- lead a guy like hannity to think, wow, this person is really listening to me, really values what i have to say and perhaps seize th sees that as ag to working in the white house and i asked hannity if as i had heard from some in the campaign that he was lobbying to be chief of staff in a trump white house, he said that's news to him. but what is clear is that for people like laura ingram and ann coulter, who have also offered strategic advice and ingram has sat in on debate prep, steve bann bannon, of course, from breitbart, being part of his campaign team, essentially ratifying this pact between conservative media and trump. it's clear that a lot of them have fallen, not just because of ratings and certainly ratings have been a big part of it, but also because this is an opportunity for them to get in good with a guy who could become president. >> which is, to be clear, somewhat different than what conservative media leaders tend
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to usually say, which is that they are explicitly not a part of the washington government axis. that they hold those folks accountable that they are honest about their conservative views or goals. but there is something different. so i mean, your reporting is suggesting there is more to it. let's take a look at trump and hannity together because they are quite public in their kinship. >> yeah. that's right. >> i want to show you a clip. >> you and i used to argue over the war, before the war started. >> you know how many times we had conversations about that? and you told me i was wrong, and fairness for those people can go is me in the media, you did tell me is over and over again i was wrong. it was a respectful debate. >> it was respectful and i understood where you were coming from. which i didn't know it would be managed so badly and neither did you. >> essentially what those men have done is act out in public a conversation that they claim took place, but there is no documentation. i talked to sean hannity about
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this, because hannity mentioned to me that, sure, you know, trump used to come on my show all of the time in the lead up to the iraq invasion and talk about how we should not go in and i was insisting we should. unfortunately, i checked, and we can't find any tapes, nothing digitized. it's a curious thing that for months and months now, there's been, you know, allegations, buttressed by the howard stern conversation that trump had in september of 2002 that trump, in fact, was supportive of the invasion. that in that span of time in the last several months, that hannity has only just now deciding that he should let us in on these series of conversations. >> are you suggesting that two of them are fabricating a set of old conversations that never took place for their mutual interests right now? >> no. no. i think it's possible that he's remembering something, and there's no documentation. it's possible that he's misremembering slightly. it's also possible that he honestly believes his conversations took place and they did not take place.
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>> so many possibilities. now you sound more like a lawyer than a reporter. >> well, i'm not going to call somebody a liar when i don't have any reason to believe, and certainly don't have proof they did lie. >> no, i understand what you're saying. and i appreciate it. i want to flip to the other point that you were raising earlier, which is, okay, that's the kinship. then there is the drama. eric erickson is for many people as right wing as they come. but let me read some of his interview with you from how you describe it in your piece about trump supporters. at one point, erickson receiving as many as 300 e-mails a day, more than one of the e-mails predicted he would be shot to death. one evening, showed up on the doorstep to deliver a threat that he hired security guards and he tells you, quote, i've never had obama or romney or mccain or clinton supporters come to my home or send me nasty letters, he said. walk us through why you think that piece was important. >> well, i asked erickson to flesh that out. i said, so what makes this moment in time unique?
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is it unique to trump, is it unique to the period of time that we're in? and he said he wasn't sure, but that he conjectured that voters really, for whatever reason, believe that so much is on the line in this election, that if they don't get it right, as erickson put it, that things will be over. now, i said to eric, and i say in the piece, that, of course, we have some sense of where some americans would get that idea. they've gotten that idea from talk radio, where, for the last several years, they have heard that hillary clinton is essentially a beast of the apocalypse. and to have her in office really would mean the end of all things. and so they've been whipped up into a frenzy. in a sense, eric erickson, being a veteran himself of talk radio and of conservative activism, is now a victim of, you know, something that he himself was promulgating. >> wow, exactly. well, look, robert, i appreciate you coming on. your piece was as interesting as it was long. >> often said. >> thanks again. we'll see you again.
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up ahead, we're going to talk with the crew members that's part of the investigation, questions asked about the horrific train crash in new jersey. one piece of evidence investigators have that could piece together what happened. stay with us. the pursuit of healthier. it begins from the second we're born. because, healthier doesn't happen all by itself. it needs to be earned every day. using wellness to keep away illness. and lieving a single life can be made better by millions of others. as a health services and innovation company optum powers modern healthcare by connecting every part of it. so while the world keeps searching for healthier we're here to make healthier happen.
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welcome back. i'm ari melber here at msnbc. world headquarters in new york and at the half hour, here is what we are monitoring. hurricane matthew now officially a category 4. that makes it the strongest storm to hit the atlantic in about ten years. something a lot of people are watching. we have w nbc meteorologist raphael miranda with us. where is the storm headed? >> wear watching closely in jamaica, cuba and haiti, the spots in the bulls-eye of hurricane matthew, a category 4 storm. full of surprises that explosive development last night to a category 5 storm. it has weakened a bit today. it appears to be undergoing an eye wall replacement cycle, robling a bit to the south. we'll see how this develops.
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it may regain lost strength later on. these are the current stats. winds 145 miles per hour and the movement basically to the west 6 miles per hour. just drifting to the west. eventually will take a turn more towards the north and tomorrow night into monday morning, that's when all eyes are on jamaica, also haiti and then cuba on tuesday morning. potentially dealing with a direct landfall from a major hurricane there, southeast cuba. and then it gets interesting for us here in the united states. wednesday and thursday, looking at the potential of a major hurricane just offshore in the southeast. will it turn back towards florida? will it go up the coast or out to sea? those are the questions we're going to have to figure out over the next couple days. tropical storm force winds moving into jamaica as early as tomorrow night. also haiti. even if we're not dealing with the extreme winds, extreme rain could be devastating for haiti. we're talking upwards of 4, 5 inches of rain that could cause mudslides, and also flash flooding. and then the storm does move into cuba on tuesday morning.
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computer models again going with that eastward trend. hopefully taking this one out to sea, ari but still too early to tell. we won't really know until early next week if this is going to be a threat for the u.s. or not. right now jamaica and haiti and cuba are on high alert. >> all right, raphael miranda, thank you very much. we're keeping an eye on it, of course. as we look ahead, the challenge for donald trump in winning the biggest voting block. also what will he do to close the gap between himself and hillary clinton on a busy campaign weekend? stay with us. ♪ using 60,000 points from my chase ink card i bought all the framework... wire... and plants needed to give my shop... a face... no one will forget. see what the power of points can do for your business. learn more at
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update on that new jersey train crash. the ntsb now seeking information of from the train's engineer and one of the black boxes that was recovered. this, of course, in the aftermath of that deadly commuter train. it was a new jersey crash and injured more than 100. nbc's tammy leitner in hoboken, new jersey, with more. tammy, are officials get anything closer to understanding the causes of this crash?
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>> reporter: ari, this investigation is turning out to be more difficult than expected. we've now found out that investigators had had to pull out last night, because of the asbestos in the building. keep in mind, this is a historic building, 108 years old and we're told it's just not safe for them to be in there, in addition to the roof collapse. the earliest they expect to be able to get into that mangled front cab is sometime tomorrow night. not a good sign. we do know they pulled that black box from the rear cab, but they were unable to download any information from it. so i'm told a liaison from the ntsb will be taking that to the manufacturer in kentucky, where hopefully they'll be able to download it. in addition, they have not yet been able to interview the engineer, 48-year-old tommy gallacher. we actually reached out to his union rep, and he deferred us to ntsb, still trying to interview him. just a short while ago, the ntsb vice chairman had something to say about this investigation. let's go ahead and listen to that. >> our human performance group
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is examining documentation regarding crew member qualifications, training, scheduling, health and any activities at the time of the accident and during the 72 hours prior to this accident. we've obtained blood and urine samples from the engineer, which the ntsb and fra have sent for toxicology examination. >> reporter: and ari, one thing that they are going be doing is they're going to be using a drone to fly over the tracks to see if there was any problem with the tracks. ari? >> thank you for that report. and obviously troubling to hear all the road blocks they are hitting. we appreciate it. meanwhile, we have some new reaction from the former miss universe about the comments she says donald trump made about her 20 years ago, and coming up in the next hour from his debate prep to the middle of the night tweets, the decisions that donald trump is making that has so many people asking, "what are you doing?" we will ask a trump campaign senior adviser about that and more.
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now we turn to new reaction from former miss universe, alicia machado. she's standing by. her assertions donald trump made disparaging comments about her 20 years ago. here's what she told my colleagues at telemundo. >> i have the truth in my mind. and in my heart. and that is a distraction, you know. he has a real problem. my experience with the candidate 20 years ago was true. >> joining us now, victoria de francesco, msnbc contributor, professor at the university of texas center for mexican studies. how are you? >> good morning ari, or good afternoon to you. >> well, it's good morning somewhere. morning in america somewhere, as ronald reagan has been famously paraphrased. you look at her reaction there. you, of course, writing about donald trump's problems here, which are very intersectional. there are some issues with women
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and we see that in the polling and some issues with latinos. you're saying this is basically shameful, and also bad politics. why? >> well, first of all, women vote, ari. if there is one thing we have consistently been doing more than men for the past 50 years is turning out. in 2012, 10 million more women turned out than men. and you add on to that the gender gap. so women have been leaning toward the -- i'm sorry, toward the democratic party for decades. and republican candidates know this. they want to close that gap. and donald trump is just making it worse. you know, there was a brief moment, ari, in the campaign when i thought, okay. donald trump is going oh to try to close that gap. he's putting forward propositions about six weeks paid maternity leave, tax credits for child care. really good stuff. but then he comes out and starts insulting women, latinas, housekeeping.
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one step forward, 12 steps back. >> yeah, and the argument would be there that the policy apparatus of his campaign cannot keep up with his mouth. so they are running some of that outreach, as you mentioned. here's a new ad, for example, on child care with ivanka. >> the most important job any woman can have is being a mother. and it shouldn't mean taking a pay cut. i'm ivanka trump, a mother, a wife and an entrepreneur. donald trump understands the needs of a modern work force. my father will change outdated labor laws so they support women and american families. >> i'll give you my observation and then i would love to hear yours. what i see there is som woman-explaining, if you will. we see donald trump being sold to women, but he's not allowed to talk, which might be the best strategy for them. of so he's on camera, but he's being narrated, described and sort of put in the scenes without him ever saying anything about the child care policy. >> i love it, ari. i mean, look, we saw this at the
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convention at the republican convention a couple of months ago where ivanka tried to introduce this softer, more approachable side to donald trump. but then the campaign is schizophrenic. you see the ivanka trump side of donald trump, and you see his policy propositions. but then we see his tweets at 3:00 a.m. in the morning, talking about alicia machado. so it's not going to work when dad is up at 3:00 in the morning, even though his daughter is trying to say all these nice things about him. >> right. and the other piece with alicia machado, and a lot of the subtext is, how he relates to latin american voters, immigrant, what he calls undocumented or illegal immigrants, all of that and how that plays out. new nevada polling showing donald trump is up eight points in the state among white voters, which might sound good. the problem, as you know and as your research is focused on, we have an expanding latina electorate. he's down 30 points among
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nonwhite voters in nevada and makes him on pace to lose that state and others with a similar demographic. >> absolutely. so in nevada, we see one of the fastest-growing latino populations and as a swing state, because of that latino vote, i think we're going to see it swi blue. and we're also seeing states like arizona, who have been traditionally red states, starting to swing into that light red/purple area because of the latino mobilization as a result of being angry. because, ari, he's called latinos rapists, drug dealers, now he's disparaging latinas as being housekeepers. that is not a way to win friends and win voters. >> all right. victoria, thank you very much for joining us. as always, see you again on the trail. >> sounds good. thanks ari. as we look at donald trump's very bad week and how it might hurt him with 38 days left, stwo strategists are coming up and break it down. stay with us, right after a quick break. i'm claudine and i quit smoking with chantix.
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donald trump is out in the field on this saturday. he's going to touch down in pennsylvania, a key battleground for him, trying to reverse a slide in the polls since monday's debate. the republican nominee trailing hillary clinton in four of the five national polls conducted this week. let's chop it up with peter emerson, huffington post contributor and msnbc political analyst and former adviser to the rand paul campaign. nice to have you both here. >> thanks for having me. >> on a beautiful manhattan saturday. let me start with an observation, elise and then you can build it into a theory and then you might deconstruct it. and that will be all of the time we have. every time donald trump seems he's doing all right or getting better, there is a donald trump-related problem that makes him do worse. is this, a., his attempt to make sure he doesn't actually win the election? b., a deeper sort of psychological psychosis that is
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happening without any actual plan? or c., some kind of recurring coincidence? >> i think it's self sabotage. i think that some some level, he's petrified by the idea that he could actually be elected president. because he could. if he continued to be disciplined and kept up his late september performance, before the debate, he actually was neck and neck with hillary clinton. and really the only way that she is going to win is if donald trump screws up and right now he's doing that for her. >> i agree. it seems pathological. whatever the motives are, i'm not sure we can diagnose it. but he certainly is the best at destroying his own path forward. there's no question. i mean, hillary clinton is running -- campaign ads all over the country, trying to drive his negatives up. there's no one who does it better than donald trump. >> and the question for undecided voters is donald trump's temperament, and particularly in relation to foreign policy. could he be calm enough to manage our national security and our international relations with important allies. and when he self-destructs like
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this, he shows the very worst of his lack of self control, and gives people a reason not to vote for him. >> and you both worked with campaigns. and what campaigns do is a very sloppy version of computer modelling, except instead of computers, they just have four people sitting around a table. but what they model is, well, if temperament is our problem, what are we going to say back? >> george w. bush, my relation with the military and draft, my problem is running against be a war hero, what am i going to say back. and they prepare for that. and this is a campaign that prepared an answer for that to the debate. where donald trump, a., tried to say, no, i'm just strong. and by the way, she's got the temperament problem. that was their prepared answer. but that was unfurled within days when he is doing the middle of the night tweeting. you know, i mean, so there's a prepared answer that is being executed on one hand, and then it's being withdrawn and papered over by the same guy, by the candidate. >> it's ironic, because his
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debate performance wasn't the best, but it actually wasn't hurting him with voters. he damaged himself in the days following with his erratic behavior. >> well, you have this very lonely insome knee ack who seems to have a compulsive twitter addiction, which, of course, is redundant. and he can't stop himself. so whether he's trying to actually sabotage himself or not, he's able to do it quite effectively. nonetheless, people do not vote on foreign policy in this country. and with double digit unemployment in rural and urban areas, at the end of the day, his temperament, as it relates to foreign policy, and how we conduct foreign affairs, is not going to matter. >> i'll do a snapshot here of the battleground states, more important than the national polls, what's in the ether. florida now, clinton up 46, 42. michigan, 42-35. what jumps out there, obviously a lot of people who aren't picking either one of them, which is its own kind of rejection. and we all know how rejection is hard to handle. new hampshire, 42-35.
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same dynamic. at least from a republican perspective, the argument there would be, well, if hillary clinton is sitting around 42, on a good week for her, she's beatable. >> well, but it's very -- >> a different candidate. >> oh, i mean, if it had been any other candidate, i think they would be ahead of hillary clinton by ten points at this point. she's such an incredibly weak candidate, that it highlights how absolutely dysfunctional donald trump is. it just really is amazing. i still wake up every day thinking how can american politics have gotten to this point where these are the two candidates that our country is choosing between. >> the majority of states are still in the margin of error. there are a few states like nevada that today the polling shows that she's spread by 7 or 8 points. at the end of the day, it's not about getting people to the polls. it's about getting people to vote in key states to drive the electoral vote to 270. that's the game right now. so we're only dealing, as we have talked about, with only 15 or 20 million people. >> right.
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>> in various states. that's the game. that's it. >> and so that goes to the other piece that is new today, sometimes we get up to do our saturday and it's important. please do not change the channel. but sometimes there's not a lot of news. today there is news, with donald trump going right to the "new york times," and i'll read it, saying, basically, quote, hillary clinton was married to the single-greatest abuser of women in the history of politics. hillary was an enable letter, she attacked the women who bill clinton mistreated afterward, end quote. this concept, this idea that you can gain political advantage by attacking hillary clinton for something that her husband did separately, by definition, without her, is very controversial among anyone who knows anything in politics. there is a wing of advisers, roger stone wrote a book about it, who has been an adviser to donald trump for years, although he no longer works for the campaign. some people pushing it. but at least your view as a republican over where this fits in, and the likelihood of its success.
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>> does donald trump want to win? he needs undecided women voters at this point. and by picking on bill clinton's sex scandals, hillary clinton comes across as a victim, and that makes her -- actually helps her campaign so the strategy makes absolutely no sense to me. hillary clinton's approval ratings were, in fact, the highest during the height of the monica lewinsky scandal. i don't know what donald trump is doing, other than just displaying his complete callousness. >> some. millennials polled do show some concern about how women were treated during that period of time. >> but treated by whom? >> by both the president and also by hillary. at the end of the day, though, trump has no capacity for the fine art of just measuring. he has no measures cup. so everything is either full dam wide open or not. perhaps if he had a different strategy with a different tone of voice and a different temperament, as you said, it
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might have some effect. but now it doesn't. >> well, i mean, at least that raises the question, is it a measuring cup problem or is it the recipe? because on a normal campaign, you work with experts to create the recipe. there is a policy recipe, there is a media strategy recipe, there is a spending recipe. it doesn't seem like he's working off any set recipe in this campaign. you can't go from give me credit monday for not bringing that up, the infidelities and then saturday here we are and he's telling the "new york times," which is a pretty major place to bring it up, hey, here's my attack on that. >> i don't think there's a recipe. i don't think there's even a pantry with a tool kit with, you know, substance to draw from. i think he's just completely freelancing, day by day, and to the end to his detriment. >> and that brings us to where we always end segments. nobody likes a bare pantry, okay? nobody. peter emerson, elise, thank you very much for joining. that is our hour. i will be back though, right after a short break and we're going to be gauging early voting, which is starting and also how could that change
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donald trump's chances if he's down now and people are voting now? stay with us. ♪ go paperless, don't stress, girl ♪ ♪ i got the discounts that you need ♪ ♪ safe driver ♪ accident-free ♪ everybody put your flaps in the air for me ♪ ♪ go paperless, don't stress, girl ♪ ♪ i got the discounts that you need ♪ ♪ safe driver ♪ accident-free ♪ everybody put your flaps in the air for me ♪ i can't lip-synch in these conditions. ♪ savings ♪ oh, yeah g new cars. you're smart. you already knew that. but it's also great for finding the perfect used car. you'll see what a fair price is, and you can connect with a truecar certified dealer. now you're even smarter. this is truecar.
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