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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  December 23, 2016 4:00pm-5:01pm PST

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and across the greater industrial midwest and the u.s. is that going to be the test ultimately of the political success of this person that we've just elected president of the united states. i want to thank our audience, our panels, our participants, and of course, thank you to senator bernie sanders. [ applause ] that does it for us here in kenosha, wisconsin. there's much more on our website, good night. how not to run for president and win. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. when donald trump rode down the escalator at trump tower on june 16th, 2015, to announce his
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candidacy for presidency, even though who hoped he'd shake things up wondered how long he'd last. it was hard to find an expert who are predicted he'd end up taking the oath of office. but over the next 16 months, he roared past a group of challengers and one of the best financed and best prepared democratic candidates ever. and at every turn, he seemed to check the box for what not to do while running for president. he went to war with a popular news anchor, attacked a beauty queen for gaining weight, called for his democratic opponent to be locked up and said away, said women who get abortions should face criminal punishment and defied republican orthodoxy on war, relations with russia, and trade. he called for banning an entire religion from entering the country. and weathered a storm over recorded comments from 11 years ago that seemed to endorse assaulting women. for the next hour, we'll show highlights or lowlights of the most confounding, out of the b
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presidential campaign ever. a campaign that broke every rule, yet somehow turned out on top. and that's the story tonight, how not to run for president and win. i'm joined for the hour my former chair of the republican national committee, michael steele, "usa today's" washington bureau chief, susan page, "usa today" senior political reporter, heidi prez bzybylprzy howard fineman. tonight we begin with donald trump's comments about women. for months, trump's approval rating among women hovered a stot historic lows. the conventional wisdom said that would preclude him from ever making it to the white house. he then enflamed the problem. at the first republican debate, the primary debate, trump was angered by a question moderator megyn kelly asked him about his past statements on women's looks. he didn't let it go, attacking kelly again and again over the next week. let's watch him. >> she gets out and starts asking me all sorts of ridiculous question, and you know, you could see there was
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blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her whatever. she asked me a question, it was an inappropriate question, it was a ridiculous question. even the other candidates came up to me and said, that was absolutely out of line. the fact is, she asked me a very inappropriate question. she should really be apologizing to me, you want to know the truth. and other candidates have said that. >> susan, i thought, just as a guy watching this thing, that megyn kelly, who -- and nobody's not a competitor in this business. that she won that exchange. that she made him look out of control, that his temperament was totally out of whack. and she seemed calm and tough, doing her job. >> i kpleecompletely. she acted like a professional asking an appropriate question, but in theow have to cost him the presidency along a series of other exchanges when you take them in isolation. at the end of the day, he lost women, but won white women by
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ten percentage points and that was a surprise. >> what do you make of that, heidi. i thought, out of the blood thing, i didn't even get it the first time, and then thought, oh, my god, this guy's gross, but it didn't seem to stop it. >> it created that outcome, chris, because it was such a good question and it did parlay back his exact words, which spoke for themselves to all american women. and he was very upset about that. and he couldn't let it go. because if you look at this war he had with megyn kelly, it started with that, and that's what prompted the blood coming out of her wherever comments, but he continued to beat up on megyn kelly for the duration of the next couple of months, even when looking at news reports, she was behaving no differently than her male competitors, but trump made her this unwitting symbol of sexism. >> apart from sex, he broke the oldest political rule in the
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business. when you're in a hole, stop digging. he wouldn't get out of the fight with this popular anchorwoman. >> he loves rabbit holes. and the more he finds, the more he finds an opportunity to go down. and the interesting thing about the exchange with megyn kelly, he did the one thing you didn't think was possible. he made megyn and fox news a creature of the -- you know, of the vast right-wing conspiracy against republicans running for office. in other words, you found republicans chiding fox and megyn for the way they engaged with donald trump. >> let's take a look at this first debate. hillary clinton knows how to fight, too. she seemed to bait trump by bringing up a former miss universe, who accused him of making fun of her weight. trump blew the story into a much bigger deal, by spending the next few days by attacking the beauty queen. >> she was the winner and, you know, she gained a massive amount of weight. and it was -- it was a real problem. we had a real problem. not only that, her attitude. >> i saved her job, because they wanted to fire her for putting
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on so much weight. and it is a beauty contest. you know, say what you want, but they know what they're getting into. it's a beauty contest. and i said, don't do that, let her try to lose the weight. can you imagine i end up in a position like this? so that's the way it is. >> over twitter, trump even urged people to hunt down a supposed sex tape, which turned out to be nonexistent. howard, again, he goes into the hole, fights like a foxhole, he wants to fight on this line. >> chris, let me suggest two themes here we're going to be discussing for this entire hour. the one is that the media failed to analyze how trump used the media. >> right. >> okay. let's talk about that for a second. he loves the controversy. he courts the controversy. he uses the controversy. he sucked the energy and wind and attention out of every other candidate in the race. donald trump's motto was and is, if the attention's on me, no
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matter what the cause, it's a good thing, number one. the second subpart of that is, attack, attack, attack, always attack your accuser. so that's one thing. we in the media miss the way he used us the entire year. and the second big point is, people want change. and wanted change, and they will pick up whatever cudgel they need to pick up, no matter what you say about that instrument. that's what happened this whole year. >> and the irony is, of course, once again, to make your point, that the guy that got hurt in this next episode was the guy from the media. the biggest bombshell of the campaign was in october when audio surfaced from a 2005 overheard comment by donald trump and former "access hollywood" host, billy bush, talking about women prior to a promotional shoot. listen to what donald trump says he can get away with because he's a celebrity. >> i've got to use some tic tacs just in case i start kissing her. you know, i'm automatically attracted to beautiful -- i just start kissing them.
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it's like a magnet. i just kiss. i don't even wait. and when you're a star, they let you do it. you can do anything. >> whatever you want. >> grab 'em by the [ bleep ]. >> so he's president of the united states-elect and billy bush is out of a job. i guess that's what happens to the media in a story. but that one, i thought, wuss probably mortal. >> we all thought that. >> felt like it at the time. >> but it was like the 56th mortal wound we thought -- remember when he said john mccain wasn't a hero and we thought that was a mortal wound and that was like an innocent time from long ago that that would have been so devastating. i actually this with all of these candidates, their strength multiplied for donald trump, your strength is your weakness and your weakness is your strength. he says outrageous things and that's his strength and his weakness. in a funny way, it helped make his brand. >> to make howard's point here, every fight he had was with the establishment. everything he said, no matter
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how gross it was, it said also, subtext, i'm not one of them. >> and therefore, i'm a change agent. >> heidi, the issue here with that tape, we all thought would be about women, i think a lot of women must have, because the woman vote wasn't that bad for him. it's sort of a standard women vote. it seems like he benefitted and women weren't as outraged as people were attracted by his insolence. >> we all went back to our partisan corners. but let's also point out that there was a significant gender gap here and for the first time, the democrats -- in a long time -- the democrats took married women. so i don't think we can completely dismiss this and say that women decide at the end of the day that this was all okay. i think this would have been a mortal wound and it definitely was going into a final debate in las vegas. it was very grim. i saw no surrogates on my plane flying out there other than jeff sessions. i think had the fbi not jumped back in and shook things up a
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little bit and some other intervening factors, that this may have really been a mortal wound. but i think it's also a little depressing for some women who did kind of put things -- their reputations on the line and coming out in terms o of what the lesson is. >> he hasn't settled that stuff yet. >> can i say, it's depressing for everybody. not just for women, it's depressing for everybody that he was able to use these things in the way that susan said. to show in an odd upsidedown way, his insolent bravery. >> and the gender gap this year, 11 points, that's not a record. that only matches the record from 1996, which was a bob dole and bill clinton and can you imagine that donald trump did as well as bob dole did among women? >> and more me, i think it still boils down to the fact that people in the media and the political class continue to lock at this election through conventional lenses. and they look at -- >> excuse me for living. >> i know, i know. but, you know, here it is with
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the egg on your face after this guy has weathered all these storms. it really goes to what you were saying, heidi, that at the end of the day, people were kind of looking at this and were kind of maybe put off, but also attracted at the same time. >> i think we're taken with the exclamation point when he did that. oh, my god, he did that. outrage, outrage. and people out there go, huh. they're making a big deal about this. let me think about it myself. >> the thing we have to keep coming back to, as well, in terms of not overanalyzing exactly what happened here with trump's message, and trump's voters, is that always, always come back to the fact that half of the registered electorate, the voting electorate, chose not to vote. there's been some really compelling journalism out of these milwaukee districts, for example, philly districts, of these voter who is voted in 2012, but were so disheartened by what has or hasn't happened and didn't feel like this would really make that big of a
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difference in their lives stayed home. kbl we ha >> we have to go. >> i have to make a point. first woman nominee for president and it didn't work in her favor in terms of consolidating votes of women. >> and donald trump may have also in an odd way made politics so distasteful it depressed the vote of everybody but his firmest ally. >> well said. the panel's sticking with us. and up next, donald trump's angry words on race. he called mexicans rapists. that kind of talk would have destroyed any other politician, but flnot in this case, trump. this is "hardball," the place for politics. g new cars.
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welcome back to "hardball." well, recognizing an opportunity, every savvy businessman burst on to the political scene, that's trump, by warmly embracing the birther movement, calling into question president barack obama's
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nationality. >> why doesn't he show his birth certificate? and you know what? i wish he would, pause i think it's a terrible pale that's hanging over him. nobody knows who he is, until later in his life. it's very strange. >> he may have one, but there's something on that birth -- maybe religion, maybe it says he's a musl, i don't know. i have people that actually have been studying it and they cannot believe what they're finding. >> you have people now down there searching, i mean, in hawaii? >> absolutely. and they cannot believe what they're finding. >> i still would like to see his college records. i would lake to see a couple of things. trump comes along and says birth certificate. he gave a birth certificate. whether or not whether that was a real certificate, pause a lot of people question it, i certainly question it. >> outrageous. anyway, questioning president obama's birth certificate provided trump with the foundation he built his 2016 campaign. so it's not surprising he declared his presidency by attacking an entire nationality. here he goes.
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>> when mexico sends their people, they're not sending their best. they're not sending you. they're not sending you. they're sending people that have lots of problems and they're wringing those problems with us. they're bringing drugs. they're bringing crime. they're rapists. and some, i assume, are good people. >> well, accusations plagued his campaign to the bitter end, of course. and for more on how trump demolished political norms while discussing race in america, i'm back with our panel, michael steele and howard fineman, susan page. the rapist thing just jumped out at me. what is that based on? any data? how many rapists are there? >> a based on crimes that have been committed by illegals here in the united states over a period of time. so, you take one or two instances and you kind of glom them together and it becomes a
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pejorative representation of everybody. so trump has this unique way of taking language and sort of exploding it up. so you can do one thing to all women. you can say one thing, and it's like, i've been hearing from a lot of people. that kind of political rhetoric worked very effectively for him and he was able to -- because he can always, as you said, deflect. i'm not saying it, someone else said it. >> let's get back to journalism for a second on one point. he said, let's just fact check this. i've got people out in hawaii and you won't believe what they're coming up with. and then he goes to this manchurian candidate theory, not only did the guy sneak into the country, but he assumed a false identity. he really wasn't the guy going through harvard law or the guy at columbia in high school. nobody knew that. what was that about?
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that he was some sort of pretender. >> it was about raising a cloud of dust about barack obama. and not based in fact. in fact, showing things that were shown to be disproven. and the suggestion that his birth certificate was a muslim, that wasn't true. nobody knew he was until he got into law school or college, that's also to the true. it's a rhetorical technique and that is dangerous and that journalists have an obligation to call out. >> you know when you go to a criminal or watch them, you just make up completely different stories so the jury thinks there's plausible deniability -- what do you call it? not probable guilt, shadow of a doubt. just make up a story. it might be true, too. it might be this guy is a phantom and doesn't even exist, barack obama if it worked for some people. >> this is bringing back
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flashbacks to the campaign, actually, right after the primaries in new hampshire and bill clinton was telling voters to be careful because a lot of this is going to happen in this campaign. and it's not about facts anymore, it's simply about ising the suggestion. putting the zpegs suggestion out there and letting it multiply. and we're seeing that not only by trump, but by some of the leading conspiracy theorists, quite frankly, who have now been brought on. like michael flynn. if you look at some of the things he was tweeting just days before the election about hillary clinton and child pornography and money laundering, it's really crazy stuff. >> and can i say we're beating around the bush here a little bit? donald trump goes for the perceived weaknesses of any public figure or anybody that stands in his way. with his voters and a lot of other people, we need to talk about race, we need to talk about religion, and we need to talk about ethnicity. he was going after a black -- the first black president, the
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first african-american president. he was going after the notion that he was a muslim, which was somehow supposed to be a mark against him in this society, and he was going against latinos and mexicans in particular. and in this rough market place of politics, he was willing to go, he was willing to touch buttons that other people have not been willing to do. as a matter of fact, not only gingerly do it, but do it aggressively. anything that smacked of criticism of him, he brushed off as political correctness. he was attacking the entire culture of the last 20 or 30 years of the supposed consensus that we had, that you don't speak that way about other people. >> to make that point, by the way, sort of like he's the only one ever to shoot the moon. in may, trump accused a federal judge, curiel, he called him incapable of hearing a case
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fairly because of his mexican heritage. let's watch him here. >> i have had horrible rulings, i've been treated very unfairly by this judge. now, this judge is of mexican tage. i'm building a wall, okay? i'm building a wall. i'm going to do very well with his hispanics. >> if you invoke his race as are reason why he can't do his job -- >> i think that's why he's doing it. >> he's like, he can't give me a fair hearing. >> they say now they're going to make mexican restaurants pay for it, because everybody knows nobody's paying for that wall. but just back to howard's point, he crossed over those kind of racial and gender barriers that up until now have been completely off-limits in our civil discourse and so -- so why'd he get away with it? >> because voters wants him to get away with it? >> well, i think it's enabled a certain segment that we didn't realize kind of how large that segment in our society is.
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>> you've got 4% -- >> i think it's a lot larger than people like to admit. the reality of it is, he injected race in a way in which a lot of people said, finally, someone is saying what i'm thinking. and that may say a lot about how we have not dealt with race in this country. but he understood that well enough to be able to pick that particular scab off the civil rights movement. >> or immigration, for that matter. there were legitimate questions about immigration. >> he got 29% of the hispanic vote. he got more of the hispanic voters than mitt romney did. >> we'll talk about that over time. we better know more about the hispanic communities than the generalizations. trump's over the top attacks on his opponents are coming up, from petty name calling like little marco and to telling hilla hillary she ought to be in jail. trump used degrading personal attacks against opponents.
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i'm richard lui in the nbc news room f you. actress carrie fisher suffered a heart attack while on a plane from london to l.a. her condition right now is said to be not good. anis amri was shot dead in italy. the isis-affiliated news agency released a video of amri pledging allegiance to the group's leader. and the u.n. security council passed a resolution demanding an end to the construction of settlements in israel. the u.s. on stainon stained abs
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from that vote. for now, back to "hardball." you have to brand people a certain way when they're your opponents like jeb bush, we call him low-energy. >> jeb bush is a low-energy person. so low energy, every time you watch him youb fall asleep. you have lyin' ted cruz. i say, lyin'. how would you spell that. lyin' ted, l-y-i-n with an apostrophe. we call him lyin' ted. little marco, by the way, is a choke artist. he's little. liddle. liddle. >> don't worry about it liddle marco. >> gentleman, you've got to do better than that. >> that was high school. that's a look back at how donald trump resorted to name calling during the primaries. while it was clear trump relished hurling insults at his republican proponents, he took a
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more degrading approach to his campaign against hillary clinton, attacking her ethics, her experiences, even her health. >> crooked hillary clinton, oh, she's crooked, folks, she's crooked as a $3 bill. in fact, she's the most corrupt person ever to seek the presidency of the united states of america. >> her international donors control her every move. she is a danrous liar. >> she's the devil. he made a deal with the devil. unstable hillary. >> she's pretty close to unhinged. . >> really, i don't think she's also there. >> she also lacks the mental and physical stamina. >> you see all the days off that hillary takes? day off. day off. she gives a short speech and goes home and goes to sleep and shows up two days later. you ever see her 18-minute speech? bomb, bomb, bomb, see ya! and then she can't even make it
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to her car. isn't it tough? i think we should take a drug test prior to the debate. no one is more corrupt than crooked hillary clinton. >> does this all make you feel good? we're back with our panel. i'm amazed that looking in the rearview mirror is pretty staggering. the name calling, is this going to teach our young children and granddaughters, if you want to get ahead, sticks and stones will break their bones. >> we see signs that kids are learning these lessons. we have scattered anecdotes about kids being abusive, including in neighborhoods where you would think that wasn't going to happen. here's a question in politics. can you put the tooth paste back in the tube? is it going to be possible for someone who follows the traditional rules of courteous behavior and rhetoric? >> let's ask the gentleman from the rnc. is anything going to put this -- >> i think it's out. i think you have elections to look forward to in the future, particularly in primary settings, in which candidates
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take it to another level. i really do. i think that door is kind of opened, simply because it sort of draws people further into the conversation. he was defining his opponents, because he knew that that would resonate with the audience. and that would be something that would stick with them. no matter what else she said or did after that, they would always look at jeb bush as low energy. >> we were all amused by this and thought, look how off-message he is, how off-script he is, can you believe he said that? yet after every point, there was a strategic reason why donald trump would want to say look over there, because there were some news stories that weren't very flattering. he's even doing it "hamilton," . >> we'll get to that. it seems to me everything we've talked about in this program is to show the kinds of things he
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would point to if he lost. we would say, he lost because of the way he talks about women. all of that we were wrong about. >> well, what such votes has history made? it is what it is, he won, as he said. he was asked, i think after the election, if he regretted anything that he had said. he said, no, i won. to him that's the only reason, the only rationale, the only justification. i would say, as somebody who's in digital media, who's in social media, i think the personalization of politics, the fact that it's gone from programs and agendas more and more to the permit and the intimateelationship that social media allows between the person, the candidate, and the voter, editing everything else out of the way, chris, when you're talking to donald trump via twitter or facebook, you're talking directly to him. barack obama was the first to use this with facebook. he had 20 million facebook friends. he used it in what we would generally regard as an
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uplifting, hope-filled way. that was the good side of the growth of social media. donald trump is the combative side. the side that knows that a train wreck on tv, a confrontation, is going to sell on social media. >> i just want to get moving here. we have more pictures to look at. in an unprecedented move last summer, trump also called on russia, which was behind the cyb cyberattacks on political organizations in this country to find hillary clinton's e-mails. let's watch him. >> i will tell you this, russia, if you're listening, i hope you're able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. i think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press. >> so there's another no-no. making a coalition with a government that for years -- not a government, but a nation that was our enemy in the cold war, not our enemy like that, but to go against a rival in the world as your ally. >> you know, i have a different interpretation of that. i mean, i kind of get some of
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his sarcasm sometimes. i saw that more sarcasm than any alliance -- >> did the russians hear it that way? >> i think they probably did as well. i don't know how they heard it, but i think he meant it more sarcasm. of course, it was not played out that well. that's the thing about trump. if the russians are doing it, hey, while you're in there, find these e-mails. >> and he was pushing on an open door as far as russia is concerned. chris, you and i and maybe michael, certainly not the ladies here, grew up in the era of the cold war when russia was the number one enemy. we were fighting the cold war against the evil empire. a whole zwrerngs of people has grown up without that in their thinking whatsoever. >> and trump was very shrewd to pull on that. >> but the critical word there was e-mail. anytime he could talk about hillary clinton's e-mails was a
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bad day -- >> but if he wouldn't have been so light-handed talking about -- >> some days someone will have to explain to me why e-mail was a killer for hillary clinton. >> as susan says -- >> it's not the worst thing that's ever been done in american history and it's been treated like that. up next, she's secretive. let me just stipulate that, let's stipulate that hillary is secretive. the moment trump says women who have abortions should be punished, that was a moment. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics. with my moderate to severe ulcerative colitis, the possibility of a flare was almost always on my mind. thinking about what to avoid, where to go... and how to deal with my uc. to me, that was normal. until i talked to my doctor. she told me that humira helps people like me get uc under control and keep it under control when certain medications haven't worked well enough. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections
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welcome back to "hardball." one of the more memorable moments for our "hardball" college tour this year, some might call it a highlight of the campaign, or lowlight, was an interview i did with donald trump in green bay, wisconsin, a few days before the state's republican primary. it came over a question i asked trump about the issue of abortion. let's watch him. >> should the woman be punished the for having an abortion? >> uh, look --
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>> this is not something you can dodge. it's a -- >> if you say abortion is a crime or abortion is murder, you have to deal with it under the law. should abortion be punished? >> well, people in certain parts of the republican party and conservative republicans would say, yes, they should be punished. >> how about you? >> i would say that it's a very serious problem. and it's a problem that we have to decide on. it's very -- >> but you're for banning it? >> are you going to say, put them in jail? >> i'm asking you. you say you want to ban it. what's that mean? >> i am against -- i am pro-life, yes. >> how do you ban abortion? how do you actually do it? >> well, you know, you'll go back to a position that they had, where people will perhaps go to illegal places -- >> yeah! >> but you have to ban it. >> do you believe in punishment for abortion, yes or no, as a principle? >> the answer is that there has to be some form of punishment. >> for the woman? >> yeah. >> ten cents, ten years, what? >> i don't know. >> why not? >> i don't know.
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>> you take positions on everything else. >> i do. >> what about the guy who got her pregnant. is he responsible under the law for these abortions or not responsible for abortion -- >> it hasn't -- different feelings, different people, i would say no. >> he did have an answer on that. >> you know, we heard him figure out his position on abortion while you were talking to him. >> but he had a position on the man's responsibility rather quickly. >> what do you make of that? was he trying to find his way in an uncomfortable blind way, find his orientation with the pro-life people? they must be, for some kind of abortion punishment, because what does outlaw mean? >> the giveaway on that point was what he said at the beginning of it when he said, there are some inside the gop that would say, yes, punish the woman. so once you would start to probe that, well, what's your opinion, because you want to ban it? he was like, well, let me do the math, one plus one -- and trying
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to find his way. i thought that was one of the more profound moments in the campaign for a lot of reasons. because it really was a touchstone inside the gop for those who do believe that. and they had to reconcile that view with the family members who had a different point of view. but more importantly for trump, i think he realized, these things are complicated. he kept saying it, but i don't think he really appreciated how complicated it really was in that moment, until you pushed him on it. >> i think it's a poignant moment, because i think it's a moment that when trump makes his first supreme court pick, we're going to look back on. because i don't know that trump himself, the way he was flailing around, he didn't want to show -- >> what's he mean by pro-life? >> it shows how far he may be willing to go in terms of appealing to that wing of the party. he says he's okay with the court's decision on gay marriage. separate standard for roe v. wade, should go back to the states. so i think that women are going to remember that moment when he makes his first nominee.
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>> i don't know what he was thinking when he was sitting there, chris, he was thinking, why did i agree to do this interview? and not to butter you up anymore than i always do. >> don't do it. don't do it. >> now, wait a second, that was probably the most sustained questioning on any one point that he got during the entire campaign. so when i say, he was regretting to sit down president interview, he managed to avoid that kind of thing, that kind of situation, almost exclusively and it showed that he hadn't really thought through what he was doing. he was making it up on the spot! right there. >> there's another piece of that. >> and he went to the right of most of the pro-life community on that. >> the irony of the whole thing is there, and i don't knock on the journalists, but i don't dislike him personally. so there wasn't any viciousness about it. i was just trying to get the answer. and maybe that's why he was honest.
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if he saw the blood coming out of my eyes or wherever, he probably would have said, stop this interview. >> the first part of what you said is why he came on the air. but once he's live on the air, that's different from what a print reporter is going to have a chance to do. >> i've been interviewing him since the '90s, so it is something else. i do think there's an area where we all know -- ask me about the penguins. there's a lot of things i know nothing about. >> the pittsburgh penguins? >> yeah. or just the penguins. when we come back, trump's response to terrorism and his promise to ban muslims from entering this country. that was supposed to kill him. that's an area that still scares people to this day. this is "hardball," the place for politics. i had frequent heartburn,
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with quicksilver you always earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, everywhere. 'tis the season for simple. what's in your wallet? we're back. in response to a terror attack in san bernardino, california, last december, trump made what is considered up with of the most controversial statements and policy proposals of the 2016 campaign. an announcement that continues to haunt him and his detractors alike, a ban on muslims entering the united states. >> donald j. trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of muslims entering the united states until our country's representatives can figure out what the hell is going on. >> heidi, let me ask you about
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it. i think that's still a life concern to a lot of americans, that there's going to be some sort of religious test coming in the country, even if it's based on geography, that it's still going to end up be islamic people. and a lot of islamic americans are quite rightfully scared about that. >> when he first said the, the reaction was, that would be unconstitutional by the elite, or that would be us, or anybody that's familiar with the constitution. but the concept itself of stopping people who may have bad intention, who may muslims from attacking us, that had broad support, because then you started to read the poll numbers and then you started to see that it was actually a significant number of republicans who agreed with it. and as he began to caveat it a bit and now we're at the point where it is just people from certain countries, it's becoming more accepted. >> and now the democrats may pick as their dnc chair, keith ellison, a guy whose religious faith is islam. >> yeah, and i think that's the
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point/counterpoint, you know, in the political world. but i think heidi's really touched on how there are two evolutions that have occurred here. one is among the american people themselves, who in polls near the end of the campaign showed some 50-some percent thought islam was incompatible to the values of this country. but now as he's sort of assuming the reins of the authority over the government and getting that daily full-throated briefing on what the real stakes are, you've heard reince recently and others around the campaign sort of back that down. so, yeah, we still want to make sure we protect the borders, but -- and that's going to be something he's going to have to navigate over the next few months. because the expectation is that you're going to protect us from these attacks. >> the problem is, having dipped into that to fuel his campaign, having done that, he's going to have trouble putting that back in the bottle as well. assuming he even wants to.
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and we don't know that. by the way, it's not unconstitutional. there's no constitutional right tome grate to the united states. but we have an understanding in this country that diversity and immigration is our great our gr. donald trump has questioned that entire premise of modern american life. >> this is where trump bragged during the campaign that he was elected america would not starting again, and that would mean defeating isis. trump's proposed strategy to eradicate isis was aggressive to say the least. >> i would knock the hell out of the oil areas. i would bomb the [ bleep ] out of them. i'd blow up the pipes, i'd blow up the -- i'd blow up every single inch. there would be nothing left. we're in a war against isis. we have to wipe out isis. >> with troops on the ground? >> i am going to have very few troops on ground.
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we're going to have unbelievable intelligence, which y need but we don't have. you have isis cutting off christians' heads, they'll cut off anybody's head, they're drowning them. >> 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. >> now that question was interesting because it's the biggest question of the world. of course, you always want the best part of the country, the oil, but you protect the wells with aircraft, you have to have fire, all kinds of stuff to prevent it being bombed. how do you defend a certain portion of syria or iraq with oil? how do you do that? >> he has a secret plan. >> without a war. >> the problem is he outlines extremely aggressive steps, i'm going to bomb the hell out of them but without the commitment of troops. that's one of the problems that president obama has had in trying to devise a strategy towards that that works, americans are not ready to have a big deployment of troops.
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>> is he a hawk or a dove? >> is he a hawk or a dove? >> which is he? >> i don't think we know. >> everybody from tulsi gabbard who is staunchly against the war, to giuliani. >> you have to read "the art of the deal" he's strictly transactional. >> iraq was a bad deal. >> the iran deal wasn't a good deal, et cetera. >> we're getting these retroactively. unfortunately we're finding out what the deal was after the deal. >> you have to deal with the bad deals that have already been done, but then he's going to have to come up with some deals of his own. >> he's going to keep his on -- his whole philosophy is keep your options open. >> i have one big fillphilosoph challenge to all of you. if you tell islamic people that they shouldn't let their relatives come in the country, how dow expect them to use a police term, to rat out t cousin that's causing trouble. trump is saying somebody should
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have dropped a dime on those people out in san bernardino because they were very suspicious out there. who is going to drop the dime on somebody living next door if they themselves feel under assault? >> that's going to be very hard to do. why should they feel an allegiance to the values we hold so dear in this country if that's the attitude the american government is taking towards them. >> i grew up in this country with the highest concentration of muslims in america, deerborn, detroit. they had american flags on their restaurants, gas stations, in part of patriotism, in part because they were scared of exactly this type of scenario. a lot of them are my friends, on facebook, from high school. and they are deeply, deeply distraught. i know muslim people who are legitimately wanting to move to canada. it's not that hard because of that population. >> i wouldn't limit it to that. i wouldn't end here on muslims. i would say that every american
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has an obligation, including donald trump to understand and appreciate the virtues of diversity and tolerance in the country. however he ran, i think he has to do that now for the good of the country. and by the way, if there's a muslim registry, i'm signing up. >> let me tell you, i did this show in the spirit of black humor like this is really gallo's humor, but there's a lot of information in this last part of the show that leaves you really shaken. final thoughts about where we're headed from here. ♪
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well, this has been weirdly unsettling. in fact, weirdly almost comic in its absurdity. anyway, michael, susan, heidi and howard. i'll start with michael, right around the room here, how did it happen? everything that was considered off base, out of line, wrong, and he got passed and somehow exploited. >> for the first time in the longest time i can remember the american people said to the political establishment and the media, we got this. we'll decide this election, not you. they wanted a nuclear option in this campaign and they got it in donald trump. >> and half the people disagree. >> yeah. >> i don't think this is what elected him. i think it failed to make it impossible for him not to get elected. he got elected because the number one reason people gave in exit polls for voting for a candidate was the ability to bring about change and the voters who said i want change vote for him by 6-1. >> you don't think it's the way he said the word change? >> it might have worked with some voters.
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but when we talked about the voters we didn't think he'd get that he got, it was the change message. >> the hail mary for change combined with the fact that the democrats have failed to hold on to those white working class voters who were so strongly behind bill clinton. i don't know how many times i went out into the field talked to people who voted for bill clinton on the back of a porch now cleaning houses. it's because of people like him who felt they'd been abandoned by the democrats and hillary clinton was trying to build on and she wasn't completely genuine about rejecting the part of bill's agenda like nafta that they felt hurt them. >> having started my career in kentucky and spent five years there, i wasn't surprised donald trump won. but the argument is the country -- that is the country goes on and it will continue. as barack obama said, hey, you know, this is an ongoing conversation here. progress is made in zigzag, not in a straight line. there may be some good things
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and some strong issues that donald trump puts on the table that do need to be discussed. let's hope they can be discussed civilly in his administration. >> with that, anyway, michael steele, susan page, howard fineman. i'll be back with another edition of "hardball." see you then. >> we do have a special guest tonight. i'm very much looking forward to this conversation. in the presidential campaign of 1984, ronald reagan was running for re-election against walter mondale. in august of that election year as things were heating up, the reagan campaign picked just a bull's-eye religious conservative issue, not just to work on as policy because he was president, but to campaign on for re-election as well. and so president reagan gave a radio address in august of that year and, you know, it was designed for the campaign. he was talking up what he was doing as president. he was haranguing the democrats in congress for making him do it. it was just one of these


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