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tv   This Week With George Stephanopoulos  ABC  May 15, 2016 10:30am-11:31am EDT

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starting right now on "this week" with george stephanopoulos. trump under fire. questions on taxes. >> what is your tax rate? >> it's none of your business. >> how he treats women. and with his credibility on the line, his party at a crossroads. >> are you endorsing donald trump? >> i don't want us to have a fake unification process here. >> is trump ready for the road ahead? >> it will be a little process, but it will come along. >> republican party chair reince priebus weighs in live. plus, battle lines. on isis. >> fire! >> americans. iraqis. fighting together. are the politics back home driving them apart? martha raddatz on the front lines, asking, are we close to
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defeating the enemy? from abc news, it's "this week." reporting from baghdad, co-anchor martha raddatz. >> good morning to you from iraq where the fight against isis terrorists is intensifying. an enemy, a threat to our nation that voters see as one of the most important challenges our next president will surely inherit. with a growing number of u.s. forces, nearly 5,000 u.s. troops on the ground right now in iraq, and several hundred headed to syria, the decisions our next commander in chief will make about this fight will have life or death consequences. we have seen the battle from the air. but this week, for the first time, we saw the american ground forces up close, as they helped the iraqis push back isis. it is a battle that continues to claim american lives. the latest, a navy s.e.a.l. just two weeks ago. and here in baghdad, the deadliest week in months.
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half a dozen bombings and shootings. a sign that the terrorist threat is evolving yet again. we'll have exclusive interviews with american soldiers and marines scattered across this war-torn country. and a one on one with the u.s. commander of all ground forces here. it's one of many important issues which voters are now examining as they ask themselves who can be trusted to be commander in chief? we'll look at the progress and the problems here. but first, we turn to my colleague, jonathan karl. back in washington, where "this week's" political battle hit a fever pitch. jon? >> good morning, martha. there is a struggle going on for the heart and soul of the republican party. as he was dogged by new controversies this week, this was, in many ways, a good week for donald trump, as the most unconventional candidate in modern political history moved one step closer to bringing the republican establishment together with the populist electorate that helped him win the republican primaries.
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but he has a long way to go to change a general election map that is stacked against him and to win the white house in november. you were watching the news over the last few days, you might think the tide had finally turned against donald trump. >> tale of the tapes. donald trump denying he posed as his own publicist in a telephone interview. >> stop asking me about donald trump's taxes, will you? that's the message from the likely gop nominee. >> a new scathing article from "the new york times" about his past with women. >> reporter: from the questions about his tax returns. >> yes or no, do you believe voters have a right to see your tax returns before they make a final decision? >> i don't think they do. >> what is your tax rate? >> none of your business. >> reporter: to growing confusion over what trump actually stands for. >> anything i say right now, i'm not the president. everything is a suggestion. >> reporter: then the recording unearthed by "the washington post" from the early 1990s. >> trump became poor until he got his divorce. >> reporter: from a trump
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spokesman who sounds a heck of a lot like donald trump. >> he's somebody that has a lot of options, and frankly, he gets called by everybody, in terms of women. >> reporter: trump flatly denied it. >> it doesn't sound like my voice at all. >> reporter: raising questions once again about his credibility. female voters already turned off by trump, "the new york times" unloaded a front page expose on his treatment of women. but despite the onslaught, the reality is, after those meetings on capitol hill, trump is finally starting to unify the republican party. >> it was very good. very productive. >> it was great first meeting to start that process. >> reporter: and like the step dad you didn't like when mom started dating him -- >> oh, dad. >> reporter: -- it's sinking in for many of his republican critics, he's here to stay. every senator lindsey graham who said this in december -- >> he's a race-baiting, xenophobic, religious big got. >> reporter: after a call with trump this week, he's now saying, the campaign is over, he won.
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the insults will stop with me. house speaker paul ryan is not quite sold. are you endorsing donald trump, if you're not, what is holding you back? and do you really have a choice? >> it's very important that we don't fake unifying. i don't want us to have a fake unification process here. >> reporter: republicans like ryan are concerned about the damage trump could do to their party. no one really doubts that ryan will eventually endorse trump. joining us now to discuss, republican party chairman reince priebus. chairman priebus, thank you for joining us this morning. >> hey, jon. >> do you agree with that? everybody i spoke to on capitol hill this week say they fully expect that ryan will come on board and endorse trump at some point. do you agree he'll do that? >> i get the sense that -- it was a great meeting. i get the sense that it was -- everything both parties wanted it to be.
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i don't speak for paul ryan. but -- >> but what do you expect? i mean -- >> i got the sense that things are moving in the right direction. let me put it this way. i would be surprised if he doesn't get there. because he wants to get there. and, the things that had taken place on friday seemed to move the ball a long distance down the field. i would be surprised if he doesn't. >> so was it right of ryan to go to that meeting, come out of that meeting, and still refuse to endorse trump? >> no, because i think -- i think most people involved, you know, would agree that, you know in a 45-minute meeting, you know, does this suddenly have reservations and come out after 45 minutes and say, okay, here's a big bear hug, let's move on. everyone gets that the process is better in going through the real details of what everyone brings to the table. what does donald trump believe? what does paul believe?
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and only after that process, even if it's a short process, then i think closure is most appropriate then. let me just say this, jon. both parties left, i think, very pleased with how it ended. i don't think anyone left surprised or chapped. i think it ended in the right way for everybody involved. >> let me ask you the big question. who is the leader of the republican party right now? who speaks for the party? >> you know what? people ask that question all the time. i speak for the republican national committee. paul speaks for house republicans. donald trump speaks for the millions and millions of people out there that have broken records that were voting. i think a lot of people speak for our party. because it's a huge party. there's only two parties in the country. this isn't italy. we don't have 12 parties where everyone can fit neatly into a box. and so that's why i'll say, in order for us to be
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successful, we have to be the party of the open door to recognize that, you know, differences among each other, doesn't mean that we ask people to leave. it means we ask people in and we keep growing. a lot of people speak for our party. >> two weeks ago, right before he dropped out, ted cruz called donald trump a pathological liar. he said he lies practically every word that comes out of his mouth. you heard the latest story this week, the one about trump apparently posing as his own spokesperson. and then you also heard him come out and deny that was him on that tape. let me ask you more broadly, do you have any doubts about donald trump's truthfulness? >> well, look. it doesn't matter as far as what ted cruz said or what lindsey graham said or jeb or the marco or the whole 17, you know, folks we had running. >> i'm asking about you. >> what does matter and what we're dealing with -- look, of course -- my interaction with donald trump.
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i have to -- listen. i have to judge people based on how i have dealt with individuals one on one. i have never had a situation where he's lied to me. i have never had a situation where he was not gracious and -- to me. now obviously, we had a fight over the elect -- the delegate allocation system. i didn't back off of that. i came out and defended the party. and he didn't have a problem with that. so i judge people one on one. >> so you trust him. you think he's trustworthy? >> i think he's entitled to -- yes, of course. i also believe people are entitled to forgiveness and redemption. and the question i think most people have in this regard is where or not people are who they say they are. hillary clinton, you can talk about the issue of 30 years ago with "the washington post." i think the real question, and bigger questions, on hillary
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clinton's watch in regard to exchanging cash for favors in the clinton foundation. that's an issue. whether someone posed as someone else in a story in "the washington post." that's interesting. but what about four dead in benghazi? these are issues, guys. >> let me ask you. your nominee, your presidential nominee from four years ago is calling on trump to release his taxes. saying it is disqualifying for a modern day nominee to refuse to release tax returns to the voters. there is only one logical explanation for his refusal to release his returns, there's a bombshell in them. so let me ask you. do you agree with mitt romney, or with donald trump, who said it's none of our business? >> well, look. first of all. i believe the american people look at someone like donald trump and say, okay, here's a guy on the outside. here's a guy that's never run for office. and i just have to tell you,
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after a year of dealing with this primary, one on one. and you know it's been a lot. i don't think the traditional playbook applies, jon. we have been down this road for a year. and, it doesn't apply. he's rewritten the playbook. >> so he doesn't have to return those taxes? >> analyze donald trump based on the old -- you know what? it's going to be up to the american people. they're going to have to decide whether that's a big issue or not. i think though that donald trump represents such a massive change to how things are done in washington, that people don't look at donald trump as to whether or not he releases his taxes or what the story was of 30 years ago. people look at donald trump and say, is this person going to cause an earthquake in washington, d.c., and make something happen? that is it. that's how he's being judged by the american people. so all these things that we've been analyzing for a year and that mitt romney is obsessing over, it hasn't done a thing.
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and that i think people are missing about donald trump. >> and finally, i'm sure you have seen the front page of "the new york times" today. the story about trump's relationship with women, saying talking about unwelcome romantic advances, unending commentary on the female form, a shrewd reliance on ambitious women and unsettling workplace conduct. do you have doubts in your mind about trump's relationship with women, how he talks about women? >> look, i mean, these are things he's going to have to answer for. but i also think they are things from many years ago. i think as christians, judging each other, i think is problematic. when people live in glass houses and throw stones is when people get in trouble. and so as hillary clinton, is a classic clinton operation, now suddenly these things are coming out. it's not necessarily that people make mistakes or have regrets or
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seek forgiveness. it's whether or not the person launching the charge is authentic in their own life and can be pure enough to make such a charge. i think that's what most people look at when they evaluate people's character. i don't think donald trump is being judged based on his personal life. people are judging him as to whether or not he's someone that will go to washington and shake things up. that's why he's doing so well. >> all right, chairman priebus, thank you for joining us here on "this week." >> you bet. >> let's get more with republican senator jeff sessions of alabama. a long-time member of the senate armed services committee. he was the first senator to endorse donald trump and is now chairman of his foreign policy team. senator sessions, let me pick it up right where we left off with chairman priebus. he talked about this article in "the new york times" and says there are things in here he'll have to answer for. do you agree with that? >> of course he has to answer. people will ask those questions. they have hundreds i suppose people digging into everything
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he's done for all these years. but people have not expected purity on his part. what they're concerned about, they're deeply concerned about, is this somebody strong enough to take on washington? will he challenge the establishment? will he end the illegality in immigration? will he insist on trade agreements that lift the economy? increase manufacturing? will he stand up to the elites? he's doing so. the people are responding. he's leading in ohio by four points. a state we've lost for several terms now, elections now. pennsylvania, neck and neck. indiana. so these situations to me suggest that he's appealing to the new group of voters. bringing in voters republicans haven't had in eight years. the ones necessary to win an election. >> so you were in the meeting with some of those elites today when trump came in and met with the senate leadership. as you well know, many of those republican leaders have had deep doubts, intense skepticism about
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trump. did he reassure them that he's going to tone it down? >> he did great job. it was a good, positive meeting. he talked. they talked. explained concerns they had. he responded appropriately. it was just -- not tense. an afterwards, people came around him and gathered around him and talked informally. i was pleased with that. >> are we going to see a different donald trump? >> i think he's already being more careful about some of the things he says. he's out there speaking to 20,000 people in a crowd. he doesn't use notes or teleprompters. he goes straight at the issues people are concerned about. i think that's part of his strength. >> let me ask you the question i asked chairman priebus. see if i can get a direct answer from you? who speaks for the party right now? >> i think he answers exactly right. he speaks for the republican national committee. mitch mcconnell speaks for the senate.
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>> where is the center of gravity for the party? you have a party in favor of free trade agreements. in favor of entitlement reform. open to immigration reform, a path to citizenship. those are all diametrically opposed to where trump is. so where is the center of gravity now for the republican party? >> i would say it's with the movement donald trump is leading. he's leading the republican party, which is the republican voter. and the republican voter is adopting his views and not the views that too often we have seen out of washington. democrat and republican. and so i think he's showing real strength there. he's unifying the people who will say, we want some change. we want better jobs. better wages. we don't want falling wages. we want a -- an immigration system that protects our interests. >> so i've got to ask you. i saw you were in texas speaking on behalf of trump at their party convention there. i know you don't expect to be asked. i know you're not looking for it.
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if he asked you to be his running mate, would you accept? >> well, i don't expect to be asked. he needs to get the best person who can lead this country. are you saying am i ashamed or unwilling to serve this man? no. it would be a great honor to assist him in any way i can. donald trump will appoint the supreme court justice to replace scalia. they'll keep the court from flipping. on gun rights. he will reduce taxes and create growth. and stand up to our trading partners and make sure they comply with our trading agreements. >> all right. if you get the call, you'll give us the call next, i hope. you're a long standing member of the armed services committee. you're a chairman of trump's foreign policy team. let's get back to martha in baghdad. she has questions for you as well. >> thank you, jon. senator sessions. we're going to take a closer
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look at what's going on here with the battle against isis in just a few moments. first, this will be the challenge confronting the next president. there have been lots of questions raised about donald trump's judgment, his knowledge of foreign policy. does he have the temperament to be commander in chief of our armed forces? >> i truly believe he does. he has a clear vision about some of the most basic things we need to know. first, isis is a threat. he's stated that clearly. he'll use all our power to effectively destroy isis. he says he's dubious about nation-building. overextending our troops. committing the united states in a way that we can't finally afford and shouldn't send out troops at so much risk. i think that is a healthy view, too. >> former cia director david petraeus, who commanded coalition forces here in iraq and afghanistan, wrote an op-ed piece this week saying the
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kind of anti-muslim rhetoric we're seeing at home is very harmful to u.s. national security. writing -- demonizing a religious faith and its appearance runs contrary to our values as a country. it's corrosive to our vital national security interests and ultimately to the united states' success in this war. i was out yesterday with ground commander here, major general gary volesky. he won't talk about politics or the election. but i did ask him his reaction to the petraeus op-ed. >> people forget i have muslims in my formation that wear my uniform. your religious backgrounds. your beliefs. your ethnicity. we're soldiers here. we're all defending the constitution of the united states. that's why we're able to go and operate anywhere in the world is because we stand for our values. and that builds trust and people understand we take the moral high ground on this. >> well --
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>> your reaction to that, senator? >> we need to respect people's faith. we need to -- when we're working in the middle east, we need to be very respectful of how these good people conduct their lives and the faith that they have. it's tremendously important to them. but i have to tell you, we have problems with violent extremism. we need to talk about that. we need to admit it. we need to know the nature of the threat that the united states faces. i don't think trump has gone too far. he's said we should have a temporary ban on entry of people into the country from the muslim world. that's because we have an ineffective screening process that the defense department and security forces tell us we don't have needs we have. we're moving in the right direction. it's an important issue. i believe donald trump is speaking openly about it. but he has also made clear that he hopes to see that end and end
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soon. any temporary ban would be, in fact, tech rare. >> okay, donald trump has also declared isis will be gone in i'm elected president. they'll be gone very, very quickly. but no one i've talked to on the ground says the threat will be stamped out quickly here. so how does trump make that happen? >> we have to unite all our friends and allies in the region, in europe, in nato. this can be done. we have to defeat isis because it's a direct threat to us. other problems around the world don't represent a direct threat to us that we should not be overly engaged in. just supporting in a way that's effective. i think the trump policy will work. it's a great, great tragedy that we totally pulled our troops out of iraq in 2011. senator mccain warned, pleaded with president obama not to do that. we would have to send troops back into this area. he and hillary clinton did it
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any way. now whole parts of iraq are in danger. isis is holding parts of iraq, building bases to attack from. >> senator, let's look forward. >> this was a colossal disaster. and it was one of the -- one of the greatester rors in the 21st century in my view. >> let's look forward. let's talk specifics. what would trump do differently from what hillary clinton's proposed? >> we have to step it up. use whatever forces we have, in every way we can, to defeat this isis threat and try to put back together this disaster that has occurred since we had a reasonably stable government in 2011. we -- you've got to be smart about the utilization of force. you just have to be smart about it. you have to get the best advice. i'm not going to advise today how to do it. i think donald trump would say to the military, what do you need?
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what can we do to increase the pressure on them? i'll back you up. we're going to destroy isis. and i think that's the kind of leadership we need. >> is there anything you would like to see donald trump do differently? >> well, i think he's going to need to learn. going to need to understand, really completely, as you know, martha, how complex this world is. even within baghdad. and the region around baghdad. kurds, al anbar, sunni, shia, iranians, so forth. it's a very, very complex world. and you have to be careful when you commit a military force. >> okay. thanks so much, senator sessions. as we mentioned, we've been and seen for ourself this week, the fight against isis. our exclusive report with the americans on the ground, here next. >> and by. fire! >> this enemy that we're facing
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we continue to make progress. pushing isil back from territory that it controlled. >> daesh is unequivocally losing ground. losing leaders. losing fighters. losing cash. >> the progress we're making against daesh is real. it's serious. and it's committed. >> there's been a lot of talk about whether we're winning the fight against isis. that the terrorists have lost territory and are losing their will to fight. also warnings. there's still a very real and present danger. we're here in baghdad to get a clearer picture of what is really going on. for that, we got exclusive access to the american troops working alongside iraqis as they take the fight to isis. it was a familiar and sobering routine this week. i've flown on blackhawk helicopters over iraq with gary volesky countless times.
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over the years, during iraq's darkest days. but neither of us expected to be back again. >> you remember when we -- >> reporter: volesky, now a major general, is commander over forces that include close to 5,000 americans. this is his fourth deployment in this war. but this is a new battle. is it a different enemy? >> it is. it is a different enemy. this enemy that we're facing today, make no mistake, is out there to attack everyone. we saw it in paris. we saw it in brussels. we've seen it in california. >> reporter: the fight to stop that enemy right here in the desert of al assad air base in western iraq. isis country. did you imagine you would be back in iraq? >> not iraq, ma'am. >> it's been very busy. very dynamic. much different than it was in previous times.
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>> reporter: dynamic to say the least. >> fire! >> reporter: we saw for the first time, up close, american troops on the ground, taking direct aim at the terrorist group. backing up iraqi forces outside the base and they certainly don't stop for general volesky to give interviews. >> the change now is they're out of a fight. [ gunfire ] that's the sound of freedom right there. >> reporter: freedom from the threat of isis remains a challenge nearly two years after the militants overran large swaths of iraq and syria. but general volesky says, with the help of u.s. forces, the iraqis have isis on defense. >> every day they lose terrain. they're not regaining anything. that's really what is different. >> reporter: and the iraqi security forces did score a major victory against isis in ramadi, the capital of iraq's
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largest province. as we drove toward the region, we saw the cost of the fight. we can see all of the destruction as we drive. if you look way off into the distance in the tree line, you can see areas that isis still holds. the destruction sprawls in every direction. schools crushed. bridges left in pieces. even after watching more than a decade of conflict here, the extent of this damage is stunning. these before and after satellite images make so clear what was lost here. a bustling, thriving city one year ago. today, in ruins. 1 million people called ramadi home when isis rolled through one year ago this week. civilians fled in waves. iraqi forces had to be evacuated by helicopter. >> this is the first place daesh came into ram maddy and got hold of the neighborhood. this used to be a school. >> reporter: al anbar university, once filled with thousands of students, was
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turned into isis headquarters. it would be eight months before iraqi troops backed by american air power, would take it back. ferocious artillery fire forced isis out as iraqi forces planted their flag once more. the city may be liberated. the people here are far from safe. it's estimated this city has more unexploded bombs, unexploded ordnance that any place on earth. only some 15,000 families have been able to return. this family struggles to accept the new reality. how hard will life be going forward? what is next? maybe it will be more difficult, says this father. we want this place to be rebuilt. our homes are destroyed. our cars gone. it's up to a crew of just 40 americans, contracted by the state department, the diffuse thousands of bombs and bo
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booby-traps left behind. >> do not pick anything up. do not move anything. >> reporter: you got it. they prefer to work in anonymity. but their job is crucial. >> what you see coming out of the jugs. there's a couple of pressure plates pulled up. you can see, very shall. doesn't take a lot of weight. those would be set for vehicles or persons. >> reporter: hundreds and hundreds of them? >> yes. and these are just the once they found in this leocal area. >> reporter: it could take years, maybe decades, to clear ramadi. the road ahead could be tougher. it's iraq's third largest city. the next challenge, taking back mosul. the second largest city. and it will be much more difficult than retaking this. mosul has been under isis control two years after iraqi forces essentially gave up. are you confident this time that they can face the challenge? >> i think you've seen some examples today. when they get out to that battlefield, they're ready for the mission. >> reporter: this iraqi special
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forces commander told me they are ready. should we expect that mosul will fall by the end of the year? the iraqi prime minister and the commander in chief, said the general, said 2016, we will liberate mosul. but, like in ramadi -- >> three, two, one, tickle. >> reporter: u.s. air power will be key. of major concern here, avoiding civilian casualties caused by air strikes. the u.s. and iraqi forces don't always see eye to eye on that risk. when you say the iraqis have a little looser idea of what they'll go after -- >> it's their country so -- >> reporter: what would they go after that we wouldn't? >> they're willing to destroy any building, mosques, schools, whatever else. they don't want to do it. they're more willing to do it when they see something happening. when we look at a target, with our rule of engagement, we tell
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item we can't hit that. it does cause frustration. >> reporter: the iraqi forces hope for even more air strikes in the future. what more do you need from the americans? >> air strikes. good air strikes. >> reporter: you want more air strikes? >> yes, very important. >> reporter: it's important. are they not doing enough? >> no, no, good, good. good. >> reporter: they're good? >> we need more. >> reporter: you need more. >> especially in mosul. >> reporter: in mosul. but whether the battle for mosul is this year or next, real success against isis or daesh, as they call it, will take the military and the next president a very long time to achieve. how would you define success here? >> well, success for us is daesh doesn't occupy and stick their flag in any terrain. it's getting daesh out of these cities. getting the iraqis at a point where they're secure in iraq. >> reporter: that security will continue to come at a price. it may be a long road ahead.
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our thanks especially to the 101st airborne division and particularly major general volesky. i'll have a personal look back at the war and the major general later in the show. but first, let's turn back to jonathan karl in washington. donald trump faced brutal headlines this week. as republican leaders began to rally around him, was it actually his best week yet? the powerhouse "roundtable" is standing by to weigh in. and later, the powerhouse puzzler, brought to you by voya financial. puzzler, brought you to by voya financial. val, the orange money retirement squirrel from voya. val from voya? yeah, val from voya. quick question, what are voya retirement squirrels doing in my house? we're putting away acorns. you know, to show the importance of saving for the future. so you're sort of like a spokes person? no, i'm more like a metaphor.
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the powerhouse "roundtable" is next. jane loves to treat herself. so she loves new light & fit crunch. greek nonfat yogurt with delicious toppings like chocolate and almonds. now that's a treat! light & fit crunch. feel free to enjoy. andrea sikon. medical doctor from cleveland clinic, watson, let's review the electronic medical record of the next patient.. no problem. it's a pretty huge file. done. sorry for the wait. that was quick. as part of our research, i also compared lab results with notes about prior treatments,
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then cross referenced it with thousands of medical journals. and i get the benefit of much more data, and a lot more time to plan the best treatments. i stay focused 24/7 and never sleep. you sound like a lot of medical students i know. safety doesn't come in a box. it's not a banner that goes on a wall. it's not something you do now and then. or when it's convenient. at bp, it's training and retraining in state-of-the-art simulators so we're better prepared for any situation. it's giving offshore teams support from onshore experts, so we have extra sets of eyes on our wells.
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and it's empowering anyone to stop a job if something doesn't seem right. so everyone comes home safely. we're working every day at bp, to improve our training, our technology, our culture. because safety is never being satisfied. and always working to be better. we're back now with the powerhouse "roundtable." washington post chief correspondent dan balz. fusion anchor and special correspondent alicia menendez. republican congressman tom cole, a member of the house republican leadership, and democratic congressman keith ellison who has endorsed bernie sanders.
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paul ryan comes out of the meeting saying he's encouraged lindsey graham is going to stop saying things about donald trump. is it unity or fake unity? >> i think so far fake unity. progress was made on thursday. the relationship between paul ryan and donald trump is tenuous. they don't know one another. we know this was the first real meeting they've had. we're told by both sides it was a productive meeting. a decent meeting. paul ryan was not ready to come out of the meeting and give a full-throated endorsement. >> they're different in almost every way we can imagine. stylistically. temperamentally. on the core issues. >> probably the same on tax reform. both believe the obama foreign policy has been a disaster. there's common grounds and there's difference. that's sort of normal politics. >> this is normal politics? >> differences with your nominee
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are normal politics. donald trump is a political phenomenon. i think the speaker was wise when he said we shouldn't appear that there's fake unity, to use your phrase, when there's not. let's have a process. let's have a discussion. see where there's common ground. in the end, their interests dictate that they do. in a fall campaign, donald trump needs paul ryan, needs the republican establishment, needs republican members. and frankly, a fight between a speaker and a nominee isn't going to help you keep the minority. that's paul ryan's number one job. at the end of the day, but i think they have to get to know one another and know where they can work together and places where they honestly don't agree and are comfortable saying that and knowing how to say that. in ways that don't undermine. >> alicia, can you imagine that joint press conference when the endorsement happens? i don't imagine it will happen that way. paul ryan and donald trump? >> i'm sure it will be a very entertaining press conference. i think it would have been very disingenuous if ryan came out
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of this meeting and said, you know what? we're on the same page, we're good to go. while there are clearly short-term benefits to embracing trump, getting the party behind him, there's a longer term question, especially for paul ryan who considers himself the conscience of the republican party, about whether or not giving trump a pass on some of the divisive remarks he's made during the primary reflects poorly on the gop brand going forward. >> i guess you're not giving anybody a pass. >> absolutely not. i think paul ryan needs to consider his own credibility here. he has said, and i appreciate him saying this, that there shall be no religious test for people coming into the country. >> he called the idea un-american. >> he called it un-american. how are you going to turn and and say, well, it's sort of un-american? he has his own integrity to protect. i hope he protects it carefully pause it is a long-term question. >> i think he's demonstrated he'll protect it.
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>> we'll see. he said he was open to immigration reform. this guy wants to build a wall and build it higher. i think the stakes are incredibly high for everybody here. trump has suppressed press freedom. said punch people in the face. made open appeals to racism. he's tried to persecute religious minorities. this is dangerous to the whole republic. i think people ought to take ate whole lot more seriously. >> let's listen to what trump said about the campaign proposals. take a listen to this. >> look, anything i say right now, i'm not the president. everything is a suggestion. no matter what you say, it's a suggestion. >> it just goes to prove he lies about his own bigotry. he says he doesn't know who david duke is, when he, ten years before, denounced david duke. when it was in his interest to play coy in the louisiana primary, he acts like, oh, i don't know who david duke is. he's not even seriously about that. he's openly appealed to banning muslims. he didn't say people from the muslim world.
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he said, ban muslims. now he's acting like, i don't quite mean it that way. he's not even sincere about his own bigotry. and that is his core strength. he's supposed to be a truth-teller. authentic. he's neither one of those. >> you'll hear a lot more of this in the text six months. what is your response? >> i spoke out against him when he made the remark. >> you were right to do so. >> i was. i read the constitution. the constitution is pretty clear. no religious test. >> is it just a suggestion? will he back away from this? not only did he propose it, and stated in primary after primary -- >> more than most candidates, he's a work in progress. you usually know more about other candidates because they've run for other office. he does have a shoot-from-the-hip style. he's already said things he ought to regret and i think he will regret politically. >> you guys have a problem. >> actually, i think you have. if we want to talk about honesty. >> we'll see. >> we're going to get to that.
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>> let's begin the discussion of hillary clinton, server, disaster in afghanistan. >> don't change the subject. don't change the subject. >> i'm sure you don't want me to change it. dezaster in afghanistan. russian reset. i'm concerned about what donald trump says sometimes. i'm always concerned about what hillary clinton has done. so it will be a raucous fall campaign. >> you have looked at this, dan. you have spent time looking at the map. and, i mean, so what is your sense? we had congressman ellison on in july. who told us all -- he predicted that donald trump could win the republican nomination. most people thought he was out to lunch. he turned out the be correct. can he win a general election against hillary clinton? >> i think it's tough. you look at the current map. you look at a lot of current polling. you say, he has a very tough road to get to 270 electoral votes. there are a number of smart handicappers who have looked at this more seriously than probably the rest of us. all of them say this is a strong map for hillary clinton at this
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point. donald trump has to put into play states that mitt romney was not able to win. he's clearly looking at the upper midwest. the industrial midwest. the rust belt. there a potential outpouring of white, working class voters. not clear that there's enough to turn the tide. it's not clear whether he'll be able to do it. what is clear is that i think the clinton campaign will do everything they can as early as they can to try to block his road through the states. >> we had the three polls this week, quinnipiac, that looked at florida, pennsylvania, ohio. three states that obama won that showed within the margin of error, basically a tie. >> they did. >> if trump can win those three states, he wins, right? >> that's correct. wins those three states and holds everything that mitt romney held, he becomes president. i think we need to see more polling to know if those polls are a true snapshot. if you put those up against the other thing we know about donald
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trump, he's totally underwater with latinos. totally underwater with women. he's totally underwater with a variety of constituencies in the electorate that he's going to have to have. if he's dependent totally on white working class and particularly male voters, he has to do something to move those over constituencies to get there. >> can he do it? >> can he do it? i think it's incredibly challenging. there's another element at play. how his being at the top of the ticket affects these downballot races. a number of the states you mentioned there are competitive senate races. i think that's part of the reason people are coming out and saying, never trump. for example, i live in south florida. rep zentative corbello is saying i can't support him. in part, because he has a heavily latino district. >> he keeps winning.
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and everybody keeps telling him, he can't win. but you saw senator finestein say sanders needs to get out. hillary clinton needs to begin to birth pivot to a general ele. what happens to sanders? >> he's bringing out young voters who will be important to a democratic win in the fall. bernie is helping the overall effort. he's not hurting it. and, in fact, money and politics is a big deal. it was before clinton. it was after. it's going to be. it is right for him to continue to talk about it. here's the thing. bernie sanders says we need to work on debt-free college. he's proposed debt-free tuition. hillary clinton says debt-free college. working on -- hillary clinton says she's for minimum wage. bernie would like to increase it even more. they're basically on the same page, it's just that one -- >> trump on trade is closer to bernie sanders than hillary clinton. >> hillary clinton has opposed tpp. and here's the thing. i think at the end of the day, we don't have -- we're not going in opposite directions in the
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democratic ticket. we're going in the same direction, one is just a little bit more strident, stronger than the other. i think we have consistency. >> i want to get do alicia. on the millennials. you've spent a lot of times talking to them. 90% in some of the states for hillary clinton -- i mean, bernie sanders, really going to turn around and say, i'm for hillary? >> we have been doing focus groups at fusion. with young voters. sometimes people my age, 32, want to get married. >> very young, by the way. just for the record. >> we're so invested in the election. paying such close attention. when i talk to bernie sanders supporters, it is the policies that they're after. they like bernie. but it's the policies. you push them, if it comes down to trump versus clinton, who will you vet for? over and over again, you hear that they'll show up for hillary clinton, even if for them, that is a tis tasteful choice. if that is the choice they have
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to make in november, they'll come home. we have a powerhouse puzzler for all of you. are you ready? the powerhouse puzzler. this week, president obama signed a law naming the bison as the official american mammal. millions of bison once thundered across north america. but in 1884, the number of bison in the united states dipped to just 325. so, today's puzzler, approximately how many bison are there in the united states today? and can you name them? okay.
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and now, the powerhouse puzzler, brought to you by voya financial. >> okay, so today's puzzler, how many bison are there in north america today? an approximation please, dan balz. 500,000. alicia. 100,000. 75,000. congressman ellison? >> i'm optimistic. >> 1 million. i gotta tell you. you nailed it, dan balz. a half a million bison today in north america. congratulations. we'll have a prize for you backstage. now let's get back to martha. now let's get back to martha. >> thanks, jon. connections. now let's get back to martha. >> thanks, jon. you're not just in the classroom; you're part of the community. you meet these tiny kids every year, and you help them learn and grow. but you also get to know their families, and over the years they become a part of your life,
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and you become a part of theirs. when you build those connections, you can accomplish some pretty amazing things. i'm jackie kruzik and i'm proud to be a new jersey educator. we introduced you at the top of the broadcast to the two-star general in charge of the land forces here in iraq. for major general gary volesky, iraq is familiar territory. this is his fourth deployment. since 2004. and that's not the only place he's served in the last decade. while the country has waged wars both here and afghanistan, general volesky has been there. again and again. spending more than six years away from his family. i first met gary volesky in 2004. >> they were going to put a police station in there. >> reporter: a lieutenant colonel back then. leading a first cavalry battalion in what was supposed
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to be a peace-keeping mission. in baghdad's sadr city. instead, on the very first day he took command, the baghdad neighborhood exploded in violence. there was an ambush. eight of his soldiers killed. dozens wounded. many more rescued. after being pinned down. >> uncommon valor was common that day. because there were soldiers doing things that we talk about. but you don't teach stuff like that. >> reporter: they would go on to fight for 80 straight days. volesky would be awarded a silver star during the deployment. back in the states, at ft. hood, his wife, leanne, had his back. he calls her his hero. >> i'm glad he thinks of me that way. i think that's really neat. i don't think i have done anything special either. we just do what we have to do. >> reporter: raising their son, alex, just 6 years old, fell largely to leanne. >> i miss him.
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[ speaking foreign language ] >> reporter: as volesky rose through the ranks, two more deployments to iraq would come. >> we're flying north. >> reporter: -- along with one to afghanistan. >> what do you want to do when you grow up? >> reporter: we've joined him on every one of them. how many years away from home? >> i'm not sure how long away. we've been on a -- the volesky family has been almost one year gone, one year at home, with some exceptions. >> reporter: for the voleskys, there is little choice. they've chosen a life of service. >> it's a ride you -- wouldn't -- you couldn't forget even if you wanted to. >> reporter: and alex, that little boy volesky had to leave behind so often, he's close to six feet tall today. about to graduate from high school. another event his father will have to miss. and now he's heading off to college? >> he graduates in about ten days from high school. all you want to do is have your son be proud of you. and, um -- he told me, hey, i
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joined junior rotc. and i looked at him and i said, are you crazy? he said, i just want to be an infantryman. so, you know, if he's proud of what i'm doing, i'm proud of him and proud of leanne, that's all that matters. >> reporter: our thanks to general volesky and his family and all those just like them. and happy graduation to young alex. that's all for us today. thanks for sharing part of your sunday with us. check out "world news tonight." we'll have more reporting from here. and we'll see you next week. have a great day.
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>> philadelphia city council president darrell clarke is our newsmaker. will there or won't there be a tax on sugary beverages? let's get the inside story. ♪ good morning, and welcome to "inside story." i'm tamala edwards, and again, our guest this morning is city council president darrell clarke. always good to have you here. >> my pleasure. >> and i'm sure everywhere you go, people want to talk about soda tax, so let's do it here. >> absolutely. >> what is your sense at this moment? is something -- we may not know the details. is something going to pass on sugary beverage tax? >> well, first, i'd like to say that these are very worthy causes, and everybody understands that you got to do pre-k. early education is extremely important. having our recreation centers and our libraries fixed to the level that they should be is very important. so i don't think there's any argument there. the question is, how do you get there? this proposal is a narrowly based tax, and it is created at

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