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tv   This Week With George Stephanopoulos  ABC  November 29, 2015 10:00am-11:00am EST

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>> announcer: starting right >> announcer: starting right now on abc's "this week" -- planned parenthood shootout. startling new details about the five hours of terror. why the gunman went on his rampage of horror and in an abc news exclusive, a top planned parenthood official joins us live. 2016 surprises. ben carson's unexpected trip overseas. meeting face to face with syrian refugees. carson is with us live from jordan. plus, new backlash after donald trump takes on a reporter, what the brash billionaire is saying now. and new football fears. the gridiron icon who suffered decades with a traumatic brain disease, will this revelation
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change the game? >> announcer: from abc news, "this week" with george stephanopoulos begins now. good morning, i'm martha raddatz, hope you had a great thanksgiving. we'll get to the 2016 race shortly, including ben carson's standing by in jordan, revealing what he's learned on that surprise trip to the refugee camps there. but we start off in colorado, brand-new details on the investigation into that deadly shootout at planned parenthood. revelations the shooter may have been targeting the group. our exclusive interview with a top planned parenthood official momentarily. first, abc's clayton sandell on the ground with the latest. good morning, clayton. >> reporter: good morning, martha. investigators here are trying to piece together the facts here this morning, but also trying to
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this morning, law enforcement sources aren't officially saying why robert dear allegedly >> attention, all units cspd is working. >> reporter: after his surrender and arrest in colorado springs, he allegedly made rambling, hostile statements about his target, planned parenthood. >> we're pinned down. we're getting active gunfire. >> reporter: on saturday, police and federal agents showed up at his home, where neighbors said dear kept to himself but always seemed a little off. >> we got some anti-obama pamphlets within three minutes of meeting somebody. >> reporter: u.s. attorney general loretta lynch calls the shooting a crime against women receiving health care at planned parenthood. the organization itself said the gunman was motivated by opposition to safe and legal abortion. >> it happened at a planned
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you? >> my suspicions are, that has a lot to do with the motive. >> reporter: but knowing the motive won't bring back the three victims. one a police officer, garrett swasey, a married father of two, once a champion junior ice skater. olympics and he wanted to make a mark. >> reporter: the other two victims killed haven't been nine others were wounded, expected to be okay. >> i saw myself in the mirror and it's like, my god, he was aiming for my head. >> reporter: now, law enforcement sources tell the justice department consider this a case of domestic terrorism. state murder charges will take dear is talking to investigators, sometimes perfectly rational. they may never understand his motive or mental state. martha. >> thanks, clayton.
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colorado springs, john suthers, tell us about the motivation in this killing? >> well, martha, the police and the prosecutor haven't officially released anything about the motivation. as a former district attorney, i'm very respectful of that and i'll await, you know, the release of official information before we'll comment on the >> but do you believe planned >> it certainly appears that way. i'm sure that, as the case proceeds, the criminal case proceeds, we'll learn a lot more about the motivation. >> do you know anything more about the statements that he allegedly made about planned parenthood or about abortion? >> i know what you know, somebody unauthorized made some statements to the press, but i'm not going to contribute to that, martha. i'm going to let the police and the prosecutors do their job. >> what more can you tell us
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this morning about how this happened? officers, and yet you still managed to take the suspect alive? >> yeah, it was kind of an that he gave himself up alive. martha, i was in the command center watching this unfold and the police just did a fantastic they were able to monitor security cameras in the center and advise the s.w.a.t. officers inside about the movement of the perpetrator. and that sort of coordination, they were e-mailing diagrams s.w.a.t. team and that coordination i'm absolutely because they were able to get people out of the building that perpetrator was not. >> incredible work by your officers. we also heard that the gunman
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outside. possibly, explosives or bags. have you cleared the scene there now? >> there were some things in his truck, i'm not sure they have been identified as having, you know, being related. we're just going to have -- the crime scene is still being processed. we're going to have to wait and see what the police and prosecutor tell us about this. >> would you say this is an act of domestic terrorism? >> it certainly appears that way. we have, martha, something that occurs quite a bit. we have a person that's pretty much off the grid and acting for whatever motivations very hard you know, was a head of a committee looking at things that are consistent about these kind of incidents. and one of the things that we these people sometimes with
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prevent their access to weapons. and i, you know, we'll wait and see here, but by all indications here that this guy was off the grid. >> okay, thank you very much. mayor suthers. now let's turn to the president and ceo of planned parenthood of rocky mountain. vick gee cowart joins us in an abc news exclose us ews exclusive. do you believe the facility was targeted because it is a planned parenthood facility? >> good morning. like the mayor, i have the same kinds of information that's been reported that the individual that did this crime had ramblings about abortion, but we didn't have any advanced notice, targeted at us from what we have heard. happened with your staff, we heard about this incredible coordination on security, but
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know about what happened inside. >> thank you for asking that question. because our focus really has been around our staff, planned parenthood holds the safety and the well-being of our patients and our staff at the very top of our list. it's our most important thing. i'm so pleased that all of our staff got out of the building safe, uninjured. what happened was, they evidently heard a shot and they were able to move right into give a huge shout-out to the people who were in that health center, because they responded perfectly according to their training. they got away from the front of the building. they got into the back, locked portions of the building. they called 911 immediately. they moved into locked office spaces. not one big space. but different office spaces around the building.
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and they hunkered down. they quieted their cellphones. they didn't talk and they waited for the officials to rescue them, and we are so, so thankful for the first responders and the law enforcement in colorado springs and heartbroken at the loss of an officer who was one of the first responders. >> it is truly a tragedy. i want to move back to this idea of domestic terrorism, again, you're being cautious about what the suspect may or may not have said, but you have said in a statement, that extremists are creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism. >> we have experienced so much hateful language, hateful speech, such a negative environment has been created around the work that planned parenthood does, around the idea of safe and legal abortion and we have seen that across the
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speakers in the last few months. i can't believe that this isn't contributing to some folks mentally unwell or not, thinking parenthood or to target abortion providers. >> are you talking about members are you talking about politicians? in that conversation, and i mean, you know that the air waves are full of anti-abortion language of anti-planned parenthood accusations. much of which is false in nature and we at planned parenthood are first and foremost a health care provider, we provide life-saving services to all kinds of folks, men and women across our communities, and the tirades against planned parenthood in the last few months have really been over the top.
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us, vicki cowart, this morning. turning now to 2016 and ben carson heading overseas to jordan, meeting face to face with syrian refugees after coming under fire for his lack of foreign policy experience. first, the latest from abc's tom llamas. >> we're just getting a good impression of what's going on. >> reporter: ben carson's campaign releasing these images from his surprise trip to jordan. >> this clinic seems to be very nice. >> reporter: carson visiting refugee camps where syrians have fled civil war. but bringing refugees to the united states does nothing to solve this crisis. jordan already houses 1.4 jordan needs and deserves our the overseas trip comes as carson has taken new heat about his foreign policy comments. like wrongly inserting that china was involved in the syrian civil war. and comparing the screening of
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refugees to protecting children from rabid dogs. >> you know, if there's a rabid dog running around your neighborhood you probably are not going to assume something good about that dog. >> reporter: and national security issues critical to 2016 candidates. our latest poll of republicans shows terrorism now topping the economy as the most important issue for voters. for carson, only 6% of republicans in the crucial state of iowa believe he's best to handle foreign policy. ted cruz takes the lead at 24%. he's come out against sending u.s. ground troops to syria. >> you asked about boots on the on the ground. >> reporter: meanwhile, donald trump wants more airpower in the fight against isis. >> i would bomb the [ bleep ] out of isis. >> reporter: trump is open to the idea of sending ground troops. others have been more definitive in their support.
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news, new york. and ben carson joins us now from jordan. good morning, dr. carson. we'll get to your trip in a moment. but first, your reaction to what happened in colorado springs. >> well, obviously, any hate crime is a horrible thing. no matter from where it comes and should be condemned very strongly. >> dr. carson, the planned parenthood rocky mountain's vicki cowart said extremists are creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism in this country. do you agree with that? >> unfortunately, there's a lot of extremism coming from all of the areas. that's threatening to tear our country apart. we get into our separate corners and we hate each other, we want disagree. that comes from both sides.
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equation. but what we have to start asking ourselves is, what can we do as a nation to rectify this situation? how can we begin to engage in rational discussion? all you have to do is go to an to the comments section, you don't get five comments down before people start calling each other names and abouting what happened to us? what happened to the civility that used to characterize our society? >> and you're in jordan right now and have had quite the trip to visit refugees, what have you learned about refugees that you didn't know before? >> well, i was very pleasantly surprised to see how welcoming they are. i had an opportunity to talk to many of the syrian refugees and ask them, what is your supreme desire? and it was pretty uniform. they want to go back home, obviously, and i said, what kind
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of things could a nation like the united states do that would be helpful to you? and again, i was a little bit surprised with the answer. because it wasn't what we're hearing a lot. we're hearing that they all want to come here to the united states. that's not what they want. they want to go back home. they said thge united states and other nations could be much more supportive of the efforts manifested by the jordanians in taking in people, at a lot of expense to themselves. they can't continue that without the help of the international community. you know, you look at last month, we spent $3 billion on halloween candy, that's the amount of money that's needed to bridge the shortfall for a year that they're having in jordan with the refugees. >> dr. carson, we spend more than $4 billion in humanitarian
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be doing? >> well, you know, you have to go there and see for yourself. but you can see there are a lot of individual modules that they have created for their families, they're in the process of trying to get electricity to all of them, getting pluming to all of them, and they have taken in millions of people. for us to bring 10,000 or 25,000 people over here, that doesn't solve the problem. i mean, we need to look at real solutions for the problem and not things that make us feel >> dr. carson, i have been to the refugee camps and found the same thing, they want to go either back to syria, which doesn't look possible at this point, or they want to go somewhere else. they want jobs. do you welcome them into america now, has anything changed your mind? >> well, when you say, you know, they want to escape the refugee
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camps, the main reason that any of them want to escape the refugee camps is because there's not adequate support there for them. if there were adequate support, it would be a completely different story and we can provide that adequate support -- >> the people i talked to, they don't want to stay there. >> they don't want to stay there permanently, they want to be repatriated into their own is that going to be easier from a neighboring country or from the united states? >> dr. carson, by taking this trip in the middle of the campaign, are you acknowledging that you weren't quite prepared to be commander in chief? >> i'm acknowledging that i like to know what i'm talking about. it's the same situation when i went this summer down to the border of mexico. and, you know, i knew that there
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actually able to talk to the farmers who are being harassed and to the sheriffs and sheriff's deputies who are frustrated after risking their lives and then been told by i.c.e. you must release these people. seeing a fence with holes cut in it that people can easily go through, and that's barrier. it's good to see things for yourself so you can begin to formulate the right kind of policies with the right information. >> so, what are the right kind of policies for those syrian refugees, should america be taking some of those refugees? >> i believe that the right policy is to support the refugee program that is in place, that works extremely well but does not have aid adequate funding. if you do that, you solve that problem without exposing the american people to a population that could be infiltrated with terrorists who want to destroy us. if you can eliminate the possibility of terrorists infiltrating them and wanting to
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destroy us you would have a different argument. but i don't see that being eliminated. >> do you think there were terrorists among those refugees who you talked to? >> i don't know whether there were or not. but i do know that the isis' terrorists have said that if we bring refugees that they would infiltrate them and why wouldn't >> and i want to ask you quickly about isis. i was in iraq last week. i was in the air combat command center. would you like to see the rules of engagement loosen? one of the things they told me, they aim for zero civilian casualties. and sole purpose isis structure. should that change? >> what i would really like to see is an administration that really seriously sits down with would ask them, what is needed in order to accomplish our goal
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terrorists? that's what i would really like to see. >> so, you don't know whether or not you would rules of engagement -- >> those of us who are not experts in that area can sit around all day long talking about, oh, we should do this and we should do that. why don't we listen to the people who are the experts in that area, find out what it is they need. and our decision should be, do we really want to give them what they need? or continue playing around like we are. >> okay, thanks very much, dr. carson. much more ahead on 2016 including the candidate whose new video seems to be comparing donald trump to hitler. plus, high alert with president obama heading to that summit in paris and new revelations of an nfl legend that could change the future of the game.
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paris, a city on edge this morning, police there yesterday guarding the first soccer match since the attacks and now 200 world leaders, including president obama, set to arrive for a conference on climate change just two weeks after those isis terror attacks. let's bring in chief white house correspondent jonathan karl on the ground in paris. good morning, jon. >> reporter: good morning, martha. the effort to combat climate change is what's bringing all of the world leaders here to paris, but hanging over this entire
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battle against isis. president obama has said the very fact that this summit is taking place, just two weeks after the attacks that rocked this city, is, quote, a powerful rebuke to the terrorists and according to president hollande, this is the largest gathering of world leaders, ever, in paris. security appears to be higher here than at any time after world war ii. terrorism will be on the agenda when president obama and hollande have a one-on-one meeting at dinner tomorrow night. hollande is seeking unity and a stepped-up effort against isis. but in the wake of the shooting down of that russian jet by turkey last week, unity is a very tall order. turkish prime minister erdogan has refused to apologize and russia has slapped severe economic sanctions on turkey, one of the subplots here at the summit is, prime minister
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erdogan has asked for a meeting with vladimir putin. both will be here. but so far putin has refused to respond to that request. >> thanks, jon joining us now is michael mccaul, chair of the homeland security committee. and adam schiff. top democrat on the house intelligence committee. i want to start with you, chairman mccaul, i want to go back to this planned parenthood shooting. planned parenthood is calling it domestic terrorism. and saying, em dreamists are feeding that environment. do you agree? >> it's a tragedy. we're seeing too many of these shootings, it seems like every week, i think it's a mental health crisis. i don't think it would fall under quite the definition of domestic terrorism, although i'll leave that to the justice department to make that determination. but, i do think we have to address mental health and i think we also need to enforce existing law which requires, if you have been adjudicated mentally deficient that you have
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can't purchase a firearm. and what we found, when i met with the new york police department, so many of these cases never made it into the system and i think that needs to be fixed. >> and do you think that will help, congressman schiff, that list, how do you draw the line on mental problems? >> i think this is a big issue. martha, nothing we have done has worked. essentially, we have have done nothing. the background checks are not universal, so even people who are mentally ill would be barred if they buy it off the back of a truck or they buy it at a gun show. if they can still have access to very powerful weapons, they're still going to be able to kill a lot of people, we have to do something other than this routine, now phantomime of condolence every time we have a mass shooting. >> i want to move to paris and
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they have somewhat lifted the imminent threat in brussels, i was there, you feel very safe when the city is lockdown, but they can't continue that, what do you know now of the imminent threat of brussels, in that area? >> i think the imminent threat is still very real and very present. there are a lot of people who are unaccounted for who pose a threat to both belgium and france. until europe makes the decision to share information to create a unified watch list, much like we have in this country, they either have to do that or they stop the free flow of people across their borders and within their borders, or it's not a question of if only when. >> chairman mccaul, what lessons have we learned from the attacks in paris? >> well, there are several. the paris attack, foreign fighters traveling to the region coming back, so we have 5,000 europeans with western passports that have traveled to the
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region, many of them have come back. we have hundreds of americans and many of them have come back to the united states. i do think the threat is far greater in europe because of the numbers. there are far more foreign fighters traveling in and out of europe to iraq and syria. my committee issued a bipartisan task force report, they're implementing the recommendations and the legislation to help tighten up security gaps both internationally and domestic. as adam talked about, the ease of travel, they don't check their citizens' watch lists. change in the wake of the paris attacks. >> what about here in the homeland? chairman mccaul, what really do you have to do? you can't protect all of these soft targets? >> it's very difficult and we don't want these foreign fighters coming into the united states from visa-waiver
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countries. we've had in the homeland, we have had 18 plots stopped that were isis related. we have arrested 70 isis followers. we have a thousand investigation in all 50 states. one thing congress can do, we have an appropriations bill coming up in about two weeks and i think the fbi and components of homeland security will need an increase in funding to help this combat this threat we see right in the home land. >> is that the answer, congressman schiff? >> well, we certainly have resource challenges. but we're fortunate that we don't have anywhere near of foreign fighters to track that europe does. at the same time, two areas that we can beef up our own security is at our airports. way too often when we test the tsa, they don't meet the tests. >> and that was one of the things that i was going to bring down, shooting down the -- the
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on isis, that is pretty incredible, and we haven't talked about that a lot. >> it is incredible. and if you look at the device that isis claims they used, no larger than the size of a soda can. >> do you believe that's accurate? >> i believe a device that small can bring down an aircraft. we have to tighten up our defenses. while some have put a lot of focus on the refugees, by and large the refugees haven't been the problem, the real vulnerability here is people with european passports that can travel without a visa to the united states. we'll have to address that issue. >> thank you very much for joining us. up next, john kasich taking on donald trump. >> announcer: and later, the powerhouse puzzler brought to
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with other insulins or solutions as it may not work as intended and you may lose blood sugar control, which could be serious. ask your doctor about toujeo . back now to 2016 and ohio governor john kasich who joins us from columbus this morning. good morning, governor kasich. >> good morning, martha. i want to start with ben carson and the syrian refugees, saying what we need to do is give more money to jordan and other places to help those refugees out there, is that the answer? >> well, i don't mind if we give some humanitarian aid to the jordanians or the saudi if need be. but i have been for this no-fly zone so we could have the sanctuary for those to be safe. but the president's done nothing
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and, martha, as i mentioned earlier, the russians have now deployed s-400 air defense system that only threatens our ability to move around, but the turks, they also have the coverage in northern israel, this is profound implications for the region and for us. and we dither and we delay and it is just not working out and frankly, the president ought to be encouraging the president of turkey and say, we stand with him against the fact that the russians invaded his airspace, but we have done nothing. the russians have moved forward to deploy an air defense system that we at this point really can't penetrate. >> what would you do about that air defense system? >> well, at this point, you know the only thing that you can do with that air defense system is to take it out and of course, that's very serious. martha, that's all you can do right now.
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with moving forward on a no-fly zone and i think we should be putting boots on the ground with our coalition, with europeans and our friends in the middle east like we had in the first gulf war to destroy isis once and for all. >> you have called for boots on the ground. you're calling an invading force, an occupying force. give us specifics. >> i'm not talking about i'm talking about a coalition that looks like we had in first gulf war that would involve our friends in the middle east. because we're not going to solve this problem with isis by just sitting back and delaying or dithering, which is what we have done, and the longer we do this, we did not support the syrian rebels in the beginning so assad survives. we didn't create the no-fly zones. all of a sudden, the russians are there with a very strong air defense system that not only could potentially limit what we
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part of israel and turkey. i mean, it's just amazing what's happening. this is reminiscent of what happened jimmy carter showed weakness to the russians all of the way back in the late '70s. it's a very serious problem, martha. the campaign and donald trump. your campaign has a new ad out controversy. let's listen. >> if he keeps going and he actually becomes president, he might just get around to you and you better hope that there's someone left to help you. >> okay, you're referencing the famous anti-nazi first they came for, the ad appears to compare donald trump to hitler, is that the comparison? >> no, martha, this is a colonel who was a p.o.w. for five years in north vietnam. was beaten and tortured. and these are his words. he feels very strongly about a
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>> but it's your ad. >> well, but his words. look, it's about whether we want to have a leader who unifies the country. i mean, trump has criticized and insulted women, hispanics, muslims, reporters, in addition to that -- >> do believe what donald trump is saying that he didn't know he was insulted the reporter? >> he's insulted other reporters. this one he absolutely mocked who was disabled. martha, i know you're offended i be this. we are all. we need a leader who brings us together not a leader that's separating us from one group to another. >> does that mean you would not support him if he was the nominee? >> well, he won't be the nominee. look, he may have 20% of the vote. support him. somebody has to call him out on this kind of die visive lack waj.
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>> you say he won't get the nomination, what if he does, would you support him? >> he's not going to. >> would you support him, governor kasich, if he's the republican nominee? after what you just said about him. >> i think he's very divisive and i don't believe he'll last. i know all of the press keeps speculating on what he was going do. you all said he was going to fall. now, he didn't. now you're all up in the air maybe he's going to make it. he's not going to make it, martha, because somebody who divides this current here in the 21st century, who's calling names of women and muslims and hispanics and mocking reporters and then saying i didn't do it but he did it. it's not to happen, martha. everybody needs to get over it and take a deep breath. at the end of the day, we have serious problems. >> all right, governor kasich, i'm going to have to wrap it up here. we talked about foreign affairs quite a bit. we thank you for joining us this morning.
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>> i wish you nor the race, martha. >> that would be a disaster. okay, next, on this thanksgiving football weekend, the surprising revelation about a gridiron icon, could it change the game? ge the game? i would never mock a person that has difficulty. i would never do that. i'm telling you, i would never do it. i would never do it.
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i don't care if i liked the person or didn't, and i don't know this person. >> donald trump there defending himself, saying he didn't make fun of a disabled "new york times" reporter and the powerhouse roundtable is here. "weekly standard" editor bill kristol. maria cardona and matt bai and abc news' cokie roberts. cokie, do you believe him and does it matter? >> nothing seems to matter to his base voters. fine. i think it was important that john kasich is now beginning to call him out. it's about time that others in the republican field start to say the emperor has no clothes and that is the case of course. >> is that the case, bill kristol? >> the case donald trump is not telling the truth. and he -- i mean, he clearly
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reporter. he makes the pseudoapology that he seems to get away with. >> was it an apology -- >> no, i said it was a >> this is thing that amazes me. about trump. we all get that he shoots from the hip. he's a straight talker. he says what he wants. he has absolutely zero capacity. he has demonstrated zero capacity in his campaign to say i'm sorry. i think that could be, to me, that's disqualifying in a leader. if you can't even reflect on the things that you say in the heat of the moment. >> and the voters don't agree, the latest fox news poll shows he's viewed 40% honest. 55% not honest. but it doesn't seem to matter. part of this for republicans.
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fact, when he double-downs on his lies and untruths, when he blames the media for any misstatements he thinks they made, it makes his voters that much more about supporting him. >> kasich says he doesn't have the majority of the voters. kasich seems to be the one to be taking on donald trump now. and cruz, ted cruz has taken the other side. the latest poll, ted cruz is number two in iowa with 23% in the quinnipiac poll just behind trump at 25%. he will not attack trump. where does that go? >> i think it could go all the way for ted cruz, he's very much sailing in trump's wake and hoping that trump will fall and that the voters will come to him, so he's doing nothing to alienate them.
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texas and won and represents texas in the senate, big state, i mean, he could make it. >> we just can't underestimate that the elected officials take on trump, it helps trump in a way because people have a deep officials' competency and honesty. i mean, look at the leading nomination. two first-term senators. all of these governors who have been in office, rick perry, 14 years. and other people's cases, two years. maybe christie can make a run. it's striking. we keep underestimating. >> i agree. >> chris christie just got that manchester union leader endorsement.
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it is now. probably this cycle more than any other, what the media says doesn't matter. in this primary process. at this point, i don't see a path where donald trump probably doesn't become the nominee. >> oh, nonsense. >> listen to this, bill. said before that will but what can he say that he hasn't said before that will make his -- >> hold on. >> 20% of the republican vote -- >> but if no one else drops off and he starts gaining -- >> that is where the superpacs make a difference. >> exactly. >> you're shaking your head, matt. >> the question, look, we know what we got with trump now, you have an inelastic base of support. he couldn't shake that today. the question is, the question is, you know, can he grow it?
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it. what you're really looking at, the question you have to ask yourself is, can the governing establishment of the republican party at this point be like the tea party in 2012? they remained split, that's the scenario. i don't think establishments behave that way. i think, ultimately, they do congeal around one or two candidates. if that's the case, they'll eclipse donald trump. >> i want to talk about ben carson, you heard ben carson in jordan meeting with refugees before the paris attacks, you wrote that you regretted about having been so dismissive of the carson's candidacy, he has the mind and soul of candidates. you still feel the same way? >> i do. i regretted lumping carson with trump. i said neither was qualified to
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ago. i think trump in my opinion -- i have come to loathe donald trump whereas i like and admire ben carson. he's a dekrunt human being. i think that interview showed that. he went over to jordan, he's trying to think things through. his recommendation of sending more aid to the refugees in jordan isn't crazy after all. i'm pro-carson and anti-trump. ultimately, carson won't be the nominee, either, which does the raise the question to cokie's point. >> and chris christie is in a little moment because of what happened in paris. and terrorism once it becomes the primary issue it really does sink everybody else. -- singh everything else. if people don't feel safe, nothing else matters. >> he's the best pure retail candidate in the field and that's why i think the union leader endorsement does matter. at this point. i think that establishment does have to congeal somewhere. he has a lot of strength as the
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candidate. we'll let you guys go. thank you. but we'll still ask the powerhouse puzzler for those of you at home. president obama there conducting the presidential turkey pardon. this year pardoned turkeys homage to our 16th president. can you guess either of the names? the answer after this from our abc stations. >> announcer: and now the
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you by voya financial. so, what were the names of this year's pardoned turkeys. the answer, honest and abe. now to that surprise revelation about a football legend, hall of famer and former monday night football analyst frank gifford died of natural causes in august. but a team of pathologists saying that gifford had cte, a disease results from brain trauma. that's detectable only after death. the gifford family saying our suspicions that he was suffering from the debilitating disease were confirmed. nfl commissioner robert goodell said -- we're not waiting until science provides all the answers. we're working now to improve the safety of our game. still, cte and the effects of head injuries on players has had a big impact on the league. so, what would be the impact of these new revelations? let's bring in "usa today"
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columnist christine brennan. and chris nowinski. christine, i want to start with you. you wrote in your column this week that a national all having of concussions should come easier with frank gifford. >> because he's a national name that crosses over from sports, ma that, into our culture. save the hiv with rock hudson and with magic johnson, that conversation was advanced. addiction with betty ford. very different issues all. but the common theme there is a big name that crosses into all households and you can say, now, frank gifford had this? everyone knows frank gifford. there's not a person that doesn't know him. over into our lives in a big >> chris, i saw you listening to the quote from roger goodell. saying we're not going to wait for science we're going to make the game safer. you said over and over again that the nfl is too powerful,
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them? >> well, i don't think it will change much for the nfl. but the big conversation we need to have, if this dose responsible relationship, we look at youth football. the problem is, the nfl is making some moves to their game, they can't make the youth game safe, but they're marketing it to so many children. >> you played football, high school college? >> yes. effects of this? >> absolutely. i likely have cte. our researchers can find a way to diagnose this and treat people like me. >> and, christine, i interviewed the head of the health program at the nfl, the chief doctor at the nfl, she was going through what we do for concussions. you pull them at this time.
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i have to say, i keep thinking, but we don't really know about that much of concussions, are you comfortable with what they're doing now? >> it's better than what they were doing before. but last week there was a quarterback that kept playing with a concussion. they had a conference call. this is still a work in progress. it's not just football. girls' and women's soccer, it's a huge issue there. i wonder 50 years, will we have football? we're going to have it the next 20, 30. 50 years, i don't know. what happens with those kids especially maybe the suburban kids, will they choose football or other sports? moms and dads will say we're worried about this for our kids. >> chris, should we have football in 50 yours?
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for kids. >> the doctor said she thinks there will be a trickle-down effect that will help the kids. >> there's only so much we can do to help kids. in football. no, concussions not the issue. it's hundreds of hits to the kids is terrible for any developing brain. >> thanks very much to the both of you. that's all for us today. thanks for sharing part of your sunday with us. check out "world news tonight" and we'll see you back here next week.
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