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tv   CNN Democratic Debate Special  CNN  December 19, 2015 7:30pm-9:01pm PST

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votes weeks from now. i'm wolf blitz the ner washington. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. this is a cnn democratic debate special. you're looking at st. ansom college in new hampshire where the democrats are just wrapping up an often heated debate. we heard hillary clinton, bernie sanders and martin o'malley drive home their differences on critical issues, including the war against isis, gun control and corporate america's political power. this debate comes just weeks before the first presidential primary season votes with cast and it comes in the midst of a controversy pitting sanders and clinton camps against one another. sanders telling clinton early that he's sorry, that his aides got unauthorized access to clinton's voters files take advantage of a problem with the dnc's computer system. >> does secretary clinton
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deserve an apology tonight? >> yes. i apologize. >> secretary clinton, do you accept? >> not only do i apologize to secretary clinton, and i hope we can work together on an independent investigation, i want to apologize to my supporters. this is not the type of campaign that we run and if i find anybody else involved in this, they will also be fired. >> secretary clinton, he's apologized. how do you react? >> i very much appreciate that comment, bernie. it really is important that we go forward on this. >> all three democratic candidates save their toughest shots for the presidential hopefuls from the other party, especially the republican presidential front-runner, donald trump. >> he is becoming isis's best recruiter. they are going to people, showing videos of donald trump insulting islam and muslims in order to recruit more radical
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jihadists. >> we have a team of correspondents, analysts and contributors standing by live to dissect all the pivotal moments of this democratic debate and its impact on the campaign. let's go around the tables. we'll get reaction from all of ur political correspondents, our analysts, commentators. i want to begin with jeff zellny, you cover the democrats. jeff, your major take aways from this presidential debate? >> i think the biggest take away is hillary clinton had her eye on the general election. throughout the course of these two hours, she did not relent from attacking bernie sanders or martin o'malley on these distinctions, but she has her eye on the long game here. the but i think we have to start out with bernie sanders apologizing for this extraordinary situation that's been going on for the last 36 hours or so to let his campaign file suit against the democratic national committee. he said he apologized, she said she accepts his apology and it
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is time to move on from that. i think she was trying to look ahead to the general election. bernie sanders is saying, not so fast. he tried to question her judgment, her judgment specifically on the iraq war. he mentioned that at least two or three times, that she voted for the iraq war and, of course, he did not. martin o'malley, i think, was trying to simply stay in this conversation. he was having a bit of a hard time doing that. he is struggling both in iowa and new hampshire here. but, wolf, there were some distinctions, some difference owes taxes, first and foremost. she plea of not guiltied that she would not raise taxes on the middle class. bernie sanders says he can't make that promise at all. so that is one of the issues that is going to be front and center here for the next six weeks or so until the iowa caucuses. >> malia, your major take away? >> i think it was almost a status quota base. ing people came in in the same position, martin o'malley leading in the polls. bernie sanders stalled out in the polls at about 30%. that seems to be his ceiling and
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hillary clinton in a commanding place. i thought she was very strong in a way she wasn't strong before on terror and war. i think she wanted to come out as more hawkish. you saw some stark differences there in terms of the prosecution of the war on terror, on isis. she wants a no fly zone and you heard martin o'malley there, trying to make the a distinction, trying to come forward and say he's the younger generation. i think he was trying to land punches, didn't land them very effectively. and bernie sanders, again, struggling on guns. that's an issue that hillary clinton, as well as martin o'malley think they can score points against sanders and i think they did, again, tonight president. >> david axelrod, you're a former political adviser, also our senior cnn political comment taters and you're now at the university of chicago politics. when you saw this feud between the hillary clinton campaign and the bernie sanders campaign, it had the potential for totally exploding. but bernie sanders came out
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right away and calmed things down. >> yeah. he did the right thing and so did she by reaching this point of accommodation and moving on. i think the most striking thing about this was the distinction between it and the frackus that you moderated in las vegas a couple of days ago, a few days ago, because there really isn't that much disagreement between these candidates. clearly, they were not -- martin o'malley was a little aggressive with hillary clinton at points because he's trying to get into the game. but what's striking was a good natured kind of banter between all of this and the humor that was shown. the fact is, i don't think anything happened in this debate that basically changes the ordering of the candidates. bernie sanders people, i think, will be thrilled with this debate. hillary clinton's people will be happy particularly on her performance and i think we move on from here. >> dana bash, our chief political correspondent, in both iowa and nv nevada, even though
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in all the national poll webs she's way ahead. >> right. and new hampshire is the state that kind of is the ball game, probably, for bernie sanders. he's from a neighboring state. he had done better there when he rose in the polls initially. not just a that, it kind of depends on what happens with iowa, but we all know on both sides, voters of new hampshire like to tell iowa, no, no, not so fast. so if she does well in iowa, it might help bernie sanders for that reason. but i am looking at what hillary clinton said on two things towards the general election republicans are pouncing on her on. number one, saying point-blank that the american national security position and pot posture is finally correct when it comes to isis. jeb bush had a tweet out, a video out in a nano second about that. and other republicans are going to, as well. that is going to be definitely one of the narratives going forward from the gop side.
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and the other is her suggesting that donald trump is actually a recruiting tool for isis. we're not exactly sure where she got that, but that is going to be an instant, that question that we're going to fact check. how can she prove that? >> we're going to be doing a lot of fact checking. peter binert is one of our editors, a editor of "the atlantic," the notion that isis is using donald trump's statements about using muslims from banning to the united states. have you seen evidence that isis is doing that? >> no, i haven't. the truth is, and i think. >> is a hard thing for republicans and democrats to acknowledge, the thing isis used the most are the air strikes and drone attacks killing people in the middle east. that is the biggest recruitment tool for them as reprehensible as it is. >> what's your big take away? >> as the conservative,
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obviously, i was listening through different ears. all i heard he primarily was varying defenses of those current status quo lead from behind strategy. hillary talked a lot about coalitions. coalitions seemed to be her answer for every ill. whether it was guns or isis. she talked about russia probably respecting a no fly zone. i'm not sure a lot of people trust her instincts when it comes to russia. bernie sanders he'd somehow magically make muslim nations who have been unwilling to help us somehow do this and when pressed on it, he couldn't really explain why. and i think martin o'malley, in tone, in t he nor tried to distinguish himself, but didn't really on substance. so i think if you are a republican looking at a general election and you know that terrorism is top of mind to most voters, i think you're thinking that the republicans are more where the nation is, where voters are than these three democratic candidates.
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>> like i said, isis has lost a substantial amount of territory since early this year. the strategy is actually work on the ground. it doesn't mean isis can't plot attacks in the west, they're on the ground in iraq and syria. isis is losing territory. >> the majority of americans, though, don't think that and that's reflected -- >> realities don't matter. >> we're only beginning. there's a lot to assess. up next, an eye popping moment. hillary clinton vanishes and slips back on stage. >> sorry. when heartburn hits
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raises up more than 2%. >> sorry. >> all right. that was an awkward moment after the first commercial break in tonight's democratic debate that hillary clinton was not back at her lectern. moderators were asks questions of the other candidates. she apologized. tonight's democratic debate started with some fighting terrorism, but also included economic issues, taxes, student debt, health care among others. we're back with our political corespondent, commentators and our experts. you support hillary clinton, you worked with her super pac trying to get her elected. what was your reaction? >> obviously, the candidate has no power over when the network turns the candidates on.
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it seems to me that she responded with some humor, some grace. >> dirty politics. . >> you were hillary clinton's campaign manager way back in 2008, right? >> yes. >> what was your reaction? >> to that moment? >> yeah. >> i thought it was rude that they started without her. she's the front-runner for the party right now. she could have gone into to a panel, but to start the debate without her, i thought, was just a little -- not only odd, but rude. do you want to weigh in? >> it's never been easy for me to have sympathy for hillary clinton. i certainly did in that moment. i thought it was disgraceful that they went on without her and forced this moment where she has to come on and it seemed humiliating and unfair.
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>> i thought the way she handled it was very, very good. >> that's my point. she needed sympathize in that moment. the it was a win for her. >> straight to the substance now, guys. an important issue in this debate. here is a clip of what we just heard. >> guns in and of themselves, in my opinion, will not make america safer. i think that if -- it is creating much deeper, closer relations and, yes, coalitions within our own country. the first line of defense against radicalization is in the muslim-american community. people who we should be welcoming and working with. i worry greatly that the rhetoric coming from the republicans, particularly donald
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trump, is send ago message to muslims here in the united states and literally around the world that there is a clash of civilizations, that there is some kind of western plot or even with regard against islam which then i believe fans the flames of radicalization. >> this san important theme and among other things, all three of these presidential candidates using an opportunity to go after donald trump. >> no doubt. this was, of course, the first debate since the shooting in san bernardino. we talked about gun laws and a background check. now it means so much more in the wake of this. it was one of those general election moments. there are a few small differences between these democratic candidates and bernie sanders, of course, has been more supportive of gun policy because he's from a hunting state, vermont. but the differences are minor compared with the differences of republicans. she took this moment, this opportunity to bring in donald trump. once again, and saying that if
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he is not helping here, he's hurting us with the ban of muslims and other things here. but i think that -- i think that overall, if there are any independent voters out there who were watching the week before christmas, she may look compelling to them. she may look like someone who sounds more reasonable in the wake of all this. but, of course, this is all going to be litigated again in the general election. >> i suspect there are a lot of people watching in iowa and new hampshire and south carolina, some of the other states, as well. everyone stabbed by. coming up, we have a reality check on a huge controversy between the sanders and clinton between the sanders and clinton campaigns that resulted in a apology on the debate stage tonight. stay tuned. i wanna see, i wanna see. longing. serendipity. what are the... chances. and good tidings to all. hang onto your antlers. it's the event you don't want to miss. it's the season of audi sales event.
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we're back with our democratic presidential debate special. one of the most significant nights came when bernie sanders apologized to hillary clinton for a breach of dnc computer files. this was a huge issue going into the debate, but it was quickly resolved when bernie sanders publicly apologized to hillary clinton and to his own supporters. david axelrod, how unusual is an apology like that given the feud that had developed? basically, these two campaigns were accusing each other of who knows what. well, i think the apology was smart. the fact is, bernie sanders' folks did do something wrong. it wasn't consistent with the
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nature of his campaign and he needed to do something defin it right at the top to state that and i think apologizing to his supporters, as well, was smart. but i also think hillary clinton was smart to handle it the way she did. i think her campaign got a little overheated yesterday in the exchanges and she has nothing to gain from an ongoing dispute with bernie sanders. she's got bigger things in mind. >> she accepted that apology pretty quickly. >> and remember, this is not your conventional debater, bernie sanders. remember what he said at our debate. enough with your [ expletive ] e-mails. that was not politically smart for him to do, but he did it anyway. i think it was bernie being bernie. >> there were some significant difference weapo differences. hillary clinton says there should be a no fly zone. bernie sanders says not so fast. >> that was. sanders coming down on the idea that, listen, you leave assad
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there and you focus on isis first and martin o'malley saying the same thing and going after hillary clinton in terms of wanting to be too hukish, in terms of her vote on the iraq war, as well. so a lot of differences there. i want to go back a bit to data gate. i wonder if it really is over, right? the bernie sanders campaign has, i think, really been brilliant with this. the they were in the wrong. they turned it all around and, really, became the victim in this and raised $1 million over this. >> they became the victim because the democratic national committee cut them off from their own files and acted -- >> was that would debbie wasserstrom? >> of course it is. i think it was the wrong thing to do, but i also think it was somehow suggested it was going to help hillary clinton, that was the exact wrong thing to do. >> was debber wasserman schultz stipulating the scales in favor of hillary clinton? >> well, i think the real
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problem with this and what was so brilliant about bernie sanders is the back drop of all of this is the debate on a saturday night before christmas where nobody is watching it pup sort of follow dovetails to the whole problem, right? a few debates helps hillary clinton. so i think the compounding vote issues is the real problem. >> millions of people were watching. political news junkys were watching. people who like to vote, they probably were watching. so i wouldn't necessarily belittle the number who were out there. peter. >> and i actually think that hillary clinton, if this campaign thought she had plenty to worry about, they were wrong. she's shown that she's been very good, especially since the emergence of national security. i think the biggest problem for bernie sanders is he's a one-trick pone know. he's very, very powerful on the question of income equality and incorporate governsance. when it moves to gun control, he was awkward. here with the whole first segment being on national
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security, he doesn't have the same identity on these issues. he doesn't have the same command on the issues and it allows hillary clinton to find it a much, much easier perspective >> from the republican perspective, who won this debate? >> well, she did. and i think peter is right. bernie sanders sooeg seems very unwilling make to take the dirty victory. he was constellatory, very sorry, very statesman like. david talk about their fun banter, that's great, but it's not going to move you up in the polls. so if bernie sanders wants to stay high minded, that's lovely, but bernie sand serious going to stay at 30%. >> but bernie's way to move up is not by hearing her down. hillary has a high rating among bernie's voters. they like her. they just like him more. as this data thing exploded, i kept thinking of the words of
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great legendary newsman ron burgundy. well, that -- so quickly, immediately, the democratic national committee goes nouk here, cuts off all access. bernie goes nuclear. files a federal lawsuit. just like holy smokes, guys, let's calm down and sort this out. and i think david is right. if you're for hillary, and i am, you don't want to get into this story. napoleon said don't interrupt somebody when they're destroying themselves. the campaign screwed up. if everybody else had just shut up, it would have been more damaging to bernie than the democratic party cutting him off. >> here is what i want to do. i want to tell our viewers here in the united states and around the world, it was a two hour plus debate. if you missed it, we've got some of the highlights for you right now. >> what i have a real problem with, and as you mentioned, this is a problem, i recognize it as a problem, of what the dnc did
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arbitrary without discussing it with us is shut off our access to our own information, cripple b our campaign. that is an egregious act. the i'm glad that late last night that was resolved. fourthly win look forward to working with secretary clinton for an investigation, an independent investigation about all of the breaches that have occurred from day one in this campaign because i am fought convince convinced that information from our campaign may not have ended up in her campaign. don't know that. not only do i apologize on secretary clinton, and i hope we can work on an independent investigation from day one, i want to apologize to my supporters. this is not the type of campaign that we run and if if i find anybody else involved in this, they will also be fired. >> now that i think, you know, we've resolved your data, we've agreed on an independent
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inquiry, we should move on. >> you want to know why things don't get done in washington? because for the 4r569 24 hours with those issues being so urgent to people as he tune in tonight wondering how they're going to even be able to buy presents for their kids, instead, we're listening to the bickering back and forth. maybe that's normal politics in washington. but that is not the politics of higher burp that people expect from our party. >> i worry greatly that the rhetoric coming from the republicans, particularly donald trump, is sending a message to muslims here in the united states and literally around the world that there is a clash of civilization, that there is some kind of western pot or even war against islam. which then, i believe, fans the flames of radicalization. >> thank you. i think we're going to go on -- >> this is one of those issues that separates -- >> governor -- >> excuse me, no. >> governor, we have too abide buy the rules here. >> i am the person on the stage that has passed gun safety
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legislation with a ban on combat assault weapons, david. look, there are profound differences on this issue. >> we can do all the great speeches we want, but you ain't gonna succeed unless there is a consensus. in 1988, just to set the record straight, governor, i rab for the u.s. house. we have one house member from vermont. three candidates in the race. one candidate said, you know what? i don't think it's a great idea that we sell automatic weapons in this country that are used by the military to kill people rapidly. there are three candidates in the race. you vote for one or the other, but not bernie sanders. i lost that election by three percentage points, quite frankly for that reason. so please, do not explain to me, coming from a state where democrat governors and republican governors have supported virtually no gun control. >> excuse me -- >> gun control. do not tell me that i am not shown courage in standing up to
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the gun people, in voting the ban assault weapons, voting for instant background checks, voting to end the gun control loophole and now in a position to create a consensus in america on gun safety. >> senator, thank you. >> i think a lot of people are understandably reacting to fear and anxiety about what they're seeing. first, what they saw in paris. now, what they have seen in san bernardino. and mr. trump has a great capacity to use bluster and bigotry to inflame people and to make them think there are easy answers to very complex questions. and we also need he to make sure that the really discriminatory messages that trump is sending around the world don't fall on receptive ears. he is becoming isis' best recruiter. they are going to people, showing videos of donald trump insulting islam and muslims in order to recruit more radical
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jihadists. >> and i say this with due respect, that i worry too much that secretary clinton is too much into regime change and a little bit too aggressive without knowing what the unintended consequences might be. >> but i'll tell you what would have happened. if we had not joined with our european partners and our arab partners to assist the people in libya, you would be looking for syria. >> up more than 200%. >> sorry. >> should corporate america love hillary clinton? >> everybody should. with respect to my own husband, i am probably still going to pick the flowers and the china for state dinners and stuff like that. >> a little synopsis, a little something to highlight this two-hour plus democratic presidential debate. hillary clinton is a very good
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debater. i think she's made it clear on repeated occasions and david axelrod, in 2007, 2008, she was a good debater. she did well tonight. >> absolutely she did well. i agree with the democrats who are here on this panel in saying that the dnc, whomever was worried about her debating was crazy, basically. >> the accusation against the dnc only sticks -- republican ves many more and some of these debates are on a weekend and saturday night when most people aren't home. >> the saturday before christmas, exactly. to be fair, we don't know exactly who did it and why, but yes, of course, she has a lot of experience at this. she did it how many times during the democratic -- >> 25. >> but who is counting? during 2008. >> that was eight years ago. >> that's right. during 2008. >> just yesterday. >> but look, the bottom line is that the republicans, the most interesting thing to me to be reading is that republicans on
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twitter, because they are watching her and dissecting everything she does with a fine tooth comb because they -- i mean, unless something crazy happens, they are sure she is going to be there. >> she is someone with a long record going back to 1992 when her husband was elected about the of the united states. >> there's no question about it. and part of that is an advantage because there are a lot of things that are baked in the cake that are not going to be particularly effective against her. but i want to talk about something that was said in terms of foreign policy and national security. i was struck in this debate about how utterly confident she was in talking about these issues. if i were a republican strategist and i were being honest with myself, i'd say, you know what? she's not going to fall over when we start talking about national security. she's got great command of these issues and she's very confident when she speaks of it. i think that was probably the strongest part of her performance. >> four years as secretary of state will give you a lot of confidence in talking about national security jobs. >> that's one thing.
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campaigns don't always end as they started. we thought this was going to be a debate about income inequality and her connections to wall street. it has turned to a national security campaign. that plays into her strength. so the dnc made a miscalculation, and they were trying to help her, no question about it. now the question is, have they hurt her by shieldinger from a national audience here. that's what i'm struck by, the economic issues we thought this would resolve around, the thought of elizabeth warren jumping in because of income equality. this is a different campaign now because of national security. >> and there was an excellent example of the differences between bernie sanders and hillary clinton when it comes to regime change in some countries in north africa and the middle east. listen first to bernie sanders.
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>> a difference of opinion of secretary clinton on this. >> our differences are fairley deep on this issue. we disagreed on the war in iraq. we both listened for the information from bush and cheney. i voted against the war. but i think -- and i say this with due respect, that i worry too much that secretary clinton is too much into regime change and a little bit too aggressive without knowing what the unintended consequences might be. yes, we could get rid of saddam hussein, but that destabilized the entire region. yes, we could get rid of gadhafi, a terrible dictator, but that created a vacuum for isis. yes, we could get rid of assad tomorrow, but that would create another political vacuum that would benefit isis. so i think yeah, regime change is easy. getting rid of dictators is easy. but before you do that, you have
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to think about what happens the day after. >> peter, did he make his case strongly? >> yeah. you have a cross cutting debate on a strategy. the one realist position, stick with the bad dictators to at least provide stability. the other view being we have to overthrow the incity gators because they are the cause. this will be a different general election debate if she's standing up there against cruz or trump -- >> but trump doesn't disagree with him when it comes to this. >> the hillary is running against trump or cruz, she will be running against smvn who is against the libya intervention and against the iraq war. if she's running against rubio, she will be running against someone with a view similar to her own. >> listen to hillary clinton. she defended her stance. >> that's exactly what i just said and what i just described. >> yeah, but secretary clint --
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>> because now we have a u.n. security council that will enable us to do that. with all due respect, senator, you voted for regime change with respect to libya. you joined the senate in voting to get rid of gadhafi and you asked there be a security council with resolution. all these are different issues. i know that. ooefbl dealing with them for a long time. we have to continue to do everything that is necessary. but if we had not joined with our european partners -- the people in libya, you would be looking at how the libyans are turning their attention b to try to dislodge isis from its foothold and begin to try to move together to have a unified nation. >> i was not is secretary of state -- >> senator sanders -- >> rob, i think you support
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hillary clinton, but is she vulnerable when it comes to libya is ch is a total mess right now? isis is taking over huge chunks of libya. gadhafi may be the gone. yes, he was a dictator, but in the end, he was request cooperating with the u.s., gave up his nuclear program, compensated the pan am victims. waits a blunder to get rid of gadhafi in exchange for the isis developments in northern africa right now? moammar gadhafi bombed diskco tech in west berlin, took down an airplane filled with americans. he was a terrorist. what people want stop sign politically his strength. and it's important to have experts like peter and others go through line by line, really important. but what voters do, usually for democrats that's a harder
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burden. for women it's a harder burden. hillary is a democratic woman who is seen as stronger on terrorism than any of the republican men. >> the criticisms leveled against her and president obama for that matter, all of those, including marco rubio who supported getting ready of ga testifify is they didn't have a game plan to follow up and make sure there's a peaceful situation in libya that would emerge in the aftermath of gadha gadhafi. >> right. and people want to go going forwa forward -- bernie, you voted, as well. >> his answer was not very good, which is, well, you were the secretary of state. well, you were the united states senator voting on this. it's not the attack and byplay, but basically he -- the others, particularly bernie in leveling it. if you really wanted to hurt her, you would say you sound more like those people we heard on the stage last week in vegas than you do a democrat pep
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didn't do it and he didn't attack in other ways where he could have. i think on some level he expect her to be the democratic nominee. >> she didn't get a lot of challenges tonight. if you can imagine her saying at a general election debate, touting her record of coalition building in iran and libya, you better believe someone on that stage, whoever it is, is going to have something to say about it. >> so let's say donald trump or marco rubio, ted cruz, deal with her on this issue of regime change? >> whether it's regime change, whether it's trufrting russia to respect & a no fly zone, her coalition building in iran, i mean, any republican is going tovg after her competency, is going to go after her decision making for judgment when it comes to foreign policy.
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>> patti,ing and respond to that. >> he invoked her position as secretary of state working with foreign lead eers. there is not anyone on the stage tonight or anyone in legislation who has any of that kind of experience whatever. i agree with paul, voters are going to see their competency as she debates them. americans right now don't think barack obama is doing a good job inciting terror. most americans tonight think he's doing a good job, so she, as his former secretary of state is the inheriter of that. she can say i want to do a different policy in syria, but if obama's foreign policy continues to deteriorate in public opinion, that hurts her. >> how do the republicans respond to hillary clinton? >> i think you just heard, the bottom line is what thax this election so fascinating is the fact that there is a divide
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within each party that we saw a display within the last weeks on the two stages about regime change versus keeping dictators in place because it is more realistic, realism. but the bottom line is, if you're a republican and the general election, all you're going to do is benghazi. you name your issue across the worlds -- >> russia reset. >> yes, she was secretary of state, she has command of the issues. rhetorically she understands them, but sheer going to see she didn't execute them properly across the board. the playbook is already written. >> on peter's point, it's not just a matter of her being secretary of state. i think you look at the style of the person. her style is so distinct from barack obama.
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frankly, he's more reflective on these issues. i don't think it's going to be as easy as some republicans think. >> stand by for a moment. coming up, hillary clinton zeroing in on donald trump slamming his rhetoric on muslims. >> he is becoming isis's best recruiter. they are going to people, showing videos of donald trump insulting islam and muslims in order to recruit more radical jihadists. of two aleve for six tylenol? what's the catch? there's no catch. you want me to give up my two aleve for six tylenol? no. for my knee pain, nothing beats my aleve.
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welcome back. the presidential democratic debate came with bernie sanders apologizing to hillary clinton for a breach of the dnc computer files. tom is here with a look at what the controversy is all about. >> i'll explain to you in one minute what this complex issue is all about. simply put, when we talk about this server idea, what we're saying is that the dnc operates essentially a warehouse of information. it's a computer with a lot of information in it that the campaigns can all benefit from. that computer, however, also allows each of these campaigns to sort of have their own area that is unique to them and that has information that only they
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can get to. so everybody is connected to their part of the warehouse, in a sense. the people who oversaw the warehouse allowed the walls to come down between these chambers accidentally. when that happened, all of a sudden somebody from the sanders camp went into the clinton camp and looked around. they say it was an accident. a small innocent. dnc says, no, we think it happened a lot and maine maybe you rummaged through hurry files before you came up and said there is a problem here. that is the problem and it's not decided exactly what happened even as they try to be nice. >> we'll see how that falls out. there was also a lot of bashing of donald trump, the republican presidential front-runner. listen to this clip from bernie sanders. >> somebody like the trump comes along and says, i know the answers. that all the mexican webs they're criminales and rapists. we have to hate the mexicans.
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those are your enemies. we have to hate the muslims. meanwhile, the rich get richer. what i say to those people who go to donald trump's rally, he thinks a low minimum wage in america is a good idea. he thinks low wages are a good idea. i believe we stand together to address the real issues fixing this country. not allow that to divide us by race or where we come from. let's create an america that works for all of us. >> donald trump, maybe somebody can check, has tweeted reacting to some of this. it's still very strong words against the republican presidential front-runner, which i suspect can help donald trump. >> yeah. i think in some ways he will be the only candidate on the republican side that they mentioned. democrats have been involved in this rebranding campaign, right, trying to rebrand the republican party as the party of trump and
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not as the party of lincoln. it's unfortunate he wasn't mentioned more the because he's a magnet. and excitement from democrats, they say donald trump as amassing to some of their value and beliefses. not a surprise if he came up over and over this debate, you've seen hillary clinton go after him in speeches, she's launching this whole love not hate campaign around his remarks and i suspect it will continue. >> i just looked at twitter and saw one of his remarks. all you heard from the debate is the pathway to citizenship for all and taking our guns away, #tryme. >> that's a tweet from donald trump. listen to this. this is hillary clinton speaking about trump. >> trump has a great capacity to use bluster and bigotry to inflame people and to make them think there are easy answers to very complex questions.
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>> very -- more strong words, david axelrod. but you think this is clearly going to be the theme of the democrats. a lot of them already assuming he's got a shot. he's got a shot at getting the republican nomination. >> the mission of the republican party was outreach to younger voters and outreach to women. donald trump is destroying that object. >> the clinton campaign hopes donald trump is the nominee. but most of them, if you talk to him in an honest moment, they do not believe he will be. the person they are still more fearful of is mark yao rubio and they're also beginning to wonder about if -- >> ted cruz. >> ted cruz, thank you. so many republicans, i couldn't think. if ted cruz is going to emerge from that. trump is good for everyone's base because it makes these democrats sound tough. but they don't think he's going to be the nominee. >> dallas reason only one republican did the candidate was mentioned and that's because
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democrats want to hold trump up as a proxy for the party. this is why for so long i have been lamenting the advent of trushg because it is so easy to use his rhetoric and his bombat and his ridiculous policy proposals to paint the whole of the party, all of whom primarily denounce a lot of the things that he says, most of them. >> except for the front running other candidates. >> most of whom do. but do denounce him. but as the same. and that's a huge problem for our party, as david said. we had made significant progress in the years since 2012 in outreach to women, outreach to younger voters, in outreach to minorities. and he has -- the damage that he's doing is not just right now. it is lasting. it is immeasurable. and its has -- if hillary clinton is the democratic
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nominee, who would she rather face, donald trump, marco rubio other ted cruz? >> i don't communicate with her at all, but i can channel her mind right now ala "star wars." i'm seeing orange, white hair, it's either a wookie or -- let me think -- donald trump. >> the problem is beyond trump. as happened in 2012, trump has moved the debate so far to the right that now ted cruz, who could be the nominee, is saying he doesn't support a path to citizenship, but he will not support any legalization of undocumented immigrants. so trump has moved the debate so far that even the candidates who are considered more moderate than him, are moving to a place where it will be hard to win hispanic votes. >> what i read to you was a retweet and what he also tweeted was donald trump won this debate. >> when people say to you, david axelrod, be careful what you
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wish for. if you're a democrat and you wish donald trump were the republican nominee, he's be surprisingly strong so far. >> he has. look, i was one of the many who didn't think he would get this far. so there is that element of fear because even though he wants a wall on the border, he wants no boundaries himself and he'll say or do anything. so, you know, i think that there is that element of risk with him as the nominee. but at the end of the day, he is so far out of the mainstream on several issues, i think it would be difficult for people at the end of -- go in the booth, punch that button, the majority of americans, i don't see it. i think hillary clinton wins that race by not a little. >> i was a young reporter in 1980 when white house officials of the jimmy carter
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administration were high fiving each other when ronald reagan, someone they called this b-level hollywood actor got the republican nomination and they simply assumed it was over, jimmy carter would be re-elected president of the united states. we all know what happened after that. so don't be so sure that donald trump, if he is the republican nominee, he's going to lose, right? >> no. i think he's going to lose. we're talking about 270 electoral votes. african-american women -- there is not a shot in heck that donald trump can build that coalition, or even whittle away a small percentage of those away from the democratic -- somebody has to stand up for ron old reagan, okay? ronald reagan was a serious person, he was a two-term governor of the largest state in this country. he had a record by public life. >> i totally agree.
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i was only pointing out that white house officials at that time were belittling him. >> reason ald ruggan got 37% of the republican vote. that's inclusive, it's welcoming, it's classic reagan and it's not what mr. trump is saying to people. >> we don't know what donald trump would stand for in a general election. he's shown he's flexible on policies. so if he got the nomination, who knows what he would campaign on. >> and does he bring new voters to the electorate? part of the theory from 2012 is all of these millions of voters stayed home.
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>> i thinkite fair to say all of us have been surprised at we will how will donald trump is doing. coming up, hillary clinton defender hesitate side and gets a laugh along the way. >> should corporate america love hillary clinton? >> everybody should.
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we're back with our political correspondents and our commentators and our experts. we're discussing the presidential debate. here is hillary clinton speaking about her husband, the former president, if she's elected. >> with respect to my own husband, i am probably still going to pick the flowers and the china for state dinners and stuff like that. but i will certainly turn to him as prior presidents have for special missions, for advice, and in particular how we're going to get the economy working again for everybody which he knows a little bit about. >> let me get the women to react, first of all. what did you think? >> that bummed me out. it really did.
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if she is president, she is going to have a lot on her plate. she is not going to get -- i didn't mean that -- that was an accident, but i'll own it. she's not going to have time for that kind of stuff and, you know, it's kind of a bummer. look, the bottom line is, the first female president, whomever she is going to be is going to have to make those decisions and i think, you know, stepping back on china patterns and flowers is probably one of the first things that she should do. >> yeah, i mean, you know, we saw this and we were like, oh, god, why did she say that? i think it gets at her odd relationship with feminism. is she a feminist? is she post feminist? i don't think shoal have time to pick out the flowers and pick out the china pattern, but for some reason she felt like she needed to say that which i think again gichsz this odd relationship to feminism and what it means to be the first
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lady president. >> i worked with her and she was a first lady and she has a love for state dinners and picking out flowers and china patterns. but that answer sort of bummed me out, too. she's the president of the united states, she wines and she's going to have -- >> is it a generational thing? >> oh, i don't -- look, as a conservative, you know, you embrace your femininity, that's fete fine. but it was cringe worthy for me because maybe she is a big fan of flowers, but it felt very contrived. it felt like i'm putting on my human outfit. >> does she know more about china than donald trump? >> no way. >> she was trying to have an authentic grandmother moment. it's like no, you're not going to be picking out china pattern if you're the president of the united states. you're just not. >> what did she say, in '92, about --
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>> yeah. brilliant young press aide in iowa named lily adams who i follow on twitter. during the debate, lily, a smart, young woman working for hillary in her press office tweeted, here is how hillary deal wes china and linked it to a video of her speech where she went to beijing and attacked china for human rights. i thought that was a brilliant turn. >> from what she said. i think it shows that she's been back in 1992, it's hard to believe, she was really a cultural lightning rod on the impression, when she did make that comment about women all across the country were sending her -- i think it shows you how much she's progressed as a politician. she is much, much more adept on the issue so far. and so far through the dog which has not parked in this campaign, which is good for her. >> one of the things that bothered me most, and paul and i disagreed on this, was she referred to in the last clinton
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administration. and i thought claiming herself as the successor to the last clinton administration, i thought it what it is was -- she did one on her own. >> she did say use her husband to help get the economy working again. bill clinton's economy during his two terms was good. >> it was good. but i think one of the things she's done very well in this campaign is staep establish her own persona. she haven't been campaigning together very much. he's been doing a lot of fund-raising. i think there's a reason for that and i don't think you want to bring him back into the discussion right now. >> is that a problem, bringing him back into the discussion? >> not in the democratic arena it's not. that is the central question. i'm at a lot of her town hall meetings and voter after voter after voter asks her, what is he going to be up to? i think he will have a large behind th scenes role in this campaign. he's her top adviser, no question. he's in new hampshire tonight,
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not sitting in the debate hall but watching it. so i think that, you know, it's an obvious question but, no, she shouldn't have said the last clinton administration. that's getting ahead of herself as though there's going to be a next one and we're far from there. >> would she be wise to talk about you get two for the price of one? >> no. and she exclusively said i'm not running for the third term clinton administration. i'm running for my first term. so i think this is going to be a constant thing. when do you invoke bill clinton, what kind of role he plays in the campaign? and i think sometimes she'll distance herself and sometimes she'll embrace it. >> you worked for both of them. >> really only for him, but i loved her been. >> well, she was the first lady. >> yes. >> so you really worked for her, too. >> well, i loved hillary and that phrase, two for the price of one, that was a phrase we used for bill clinton in 1991
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and people loved it. people like the fact that her husband did a good job and it's less now than it was in '08 for her to establish her position. democrats in this case, we get to the general elections, my party has an embarrassment of riches. joe biden, president obama, i want to see if george w. bush is going to campaign for these guys. dick cheney campaigned for the republican party. you'll see them on the milk cartons and nowhere else. >> how worried would the republicans be about bill clinton getting out there and i assume he will be an active campaigner if she gets the democratic fom nation? >> i think not very. he is gifted, he is incredibly talented and he is beloved, inexplicably for many. but no, he's had some dangerous moments the on the campaign trail. he has not always been a positive for her or for obama.
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he has a tendency to go rogue. and i think any sort of associations with him really make it look like she's there on her own. i think that's the campaign she should be running. and i think plotting him out looks a little insecure. >> and for special missions, too. >> yeah. they deserve credit this time around. in 2008, bill clinton was a little rogue. he made some comments about barack obama that really got them in trouble. this year, for whatever reason, the campaign has been able to use him effect hely without making him a sdrangz. >> he learned his lesson well. she answered a direct question. she is running her own campaign. she's not campaigning with him. i think we're make too much of
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nothing. >> did al gore make a big mistake in 2000 by not using bill clinton? >> yeah, i think so. >> that's a lesson that hillary clinton learned, as well. >> maybe so, but this is a slightly different situation. look, i think bill clinton is the most talented political figure of our time. i don't think there's any question about that. i think he's very dpigifted. i think he's incredibly smart, but i also think it's not incredibly smart for him not to campaign with her because he eclipses anyone he's with. >> one of the most fight ly fig challenges. >> would it make americans safer if they had more gun necessary their hands? and she, of course, as you would expect, took exception to that idea. >> in and of themselves, in my opinion, will not make americans safer. we lose 33,000 people a year already to gun violence.
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>> let's take a look at those numbers. she does have the basic number right. about 33,000 people a year are lost to gun violence. here's some details, though. out of that number, you have to know that homicide and legal interventions, police shootings, self-defense, that sort of thing, are less than 12,000. about two-thirds of these deaths are suicides. these are all critical, they are all important. but so are these details. and because she's had the chance to see these before and she's often avoided them, we're going to say what she said was true, but it is misleading. a whole lot more on a lot of the other things said by the candidates to go to >> thanks very much. a critically important issue for these especially democratic presidential debates. >> it is a central issue, but there are not that many divisions between them. we saw many, many, many, many
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more differences between the democrats and republicans. it will play out in the general election. but it's not the issue that it used to be. it used to be an issue that divided the democratic party, as well. those days are over. and i don't see that changing. >> in new hampshire, states might go after it. >> bernie sanders, as was pointed out several times, had a more conservative record -- >> from neighboring vermont. >> because he was from vermont, yes. but i don't know how that will play in the democratic primary. even in iowa, i think the numbers on the democratic side support gun safety, gun control issue. but one interesting finding in "the washington post"/abc poll this week that i found depressi depressing, frankly, was that for the first time since they've been pulling this issue, the majority of americans support or oppose the ban on assault weapons. which tells you how the issue has shifted in light of this terrorism. >> also an exchange on corporate america and their relationships with these democratic candidates, listen to this.
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>> should corporate america love hillary clinton? >> everybody should. >> will corporate america love a president sanders? >> no, i think they won't. so hillary and i have a different -- >> that underscores the difference right there. >> yeah. it underscores the difference. a lot of people tweeted about it and showed her being light hearted, but clear that sanders has a very different relationship with wall street, has a very different approach. he's going after wall street, essentially calling them corrupt. and then on the one hand saying hillary clinton is somehow in the pocket of wall street and would be a part of wall street if she was in the white house. but clear differences. this is sanders' sweet spot. he wants to talk about billionaires and he wants to be the enemy of wall street. >> we have another clin clip. hillary clinton spooem speaking about isis.
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watch this. >> when we look at these complex problems, i wish it could be either/or. i wish we could say yes, let's destroy isis and devoid -- by the minute. no. we have a strategy and a commitment to go after isis which is danger to us as well as the region. >> peter, what do you think? >> that was a good answer and she's right, actually. she does finally have a strategy. it's a very difficult issue, but john kerry is now beginning the diplomatic process. they have a u.n. resolution. she's right on the subject which is bashar al assad is the recruiter for isis. as long as you have him there and a government that has no legitimacy, it would be very difficult politically to rally sunnis against isis. so i think she showed her command of the material there.
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>> do you agree? >> well, yes and no. she used tougher language than even president obama is using, just in the press conference we saw this week. he has gone from bashar al assad must go to bashar al assad must leave which is looking at him as this unlingering party guest who we're all waiting to finally leave the party so we can start doing the dishes. and hillary clinton is a more vocal advocate for president obama, it would seem. >> strok leader, cares about people like me. these are two very different things. president obama got re-elected because he beat mitt romney on both of those. he was stronger against terrorism and he compared more about people like me in the middle class. hillary clinton is going to match up against donald trump. hillary clinton is the leading candidate on terrorism by far. normally donald trump leads on
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terrorism. why? it's because he projects strength. his policy account is to keep the concierge from attacking the trump tower. hillary clinton get us gives a nod to another big event merp res paying attention to right now. >> thank you. good night and may the force be with you. >> thank you. good night and may the force be with you. ugh! heartburn! no one burns on my watch! try alka-seltzer heartburn reliefchews. they work fast and don't taste chalky. mmm...amazing. i have heartburn. alka-seltzer heartburn reliefchews. enjoy the relief. after a dvt blood clot.mind when i got out of the hospital what about my family?
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while we've been diving with the headlights of the tonight's democratic presidential debate, "saturday night live" has been having fun looking back at cnn's republican presidential debate earlier in the week about the way they portrayed the moderator. watch this. >> live from the venetian hotel in las vegas, it's the republican debate with your moderator, wolf blitzer. >> good evening. for those of you who missed our earlier under card debate featuring mike huckabee and rick santor santorum, well, the results are in and everybody lost. now, let's meet the candidates. nine are here tonight. the five who are actually have a chance are donald trump, ted cruz, ben carson, marco rubio,
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and poor sweet jeb bush. would the rest of you just wave to your parents know you're here. >> hey, boy! >> we begin with the front-runner, mr. trump. your opening remarks? >> debate -- debates are stupid. you should be paying me. and wolf blitzer looks like papa smurf. >> wolf, may i take a desperate swing at donald now? >> go ahead, mr. bush. >> this is what he does. he says these offensive things and bullies anyone who challenges him. well, guess what? you can't insult your way to the presidency. >> oh, really, jug head? i'm at 43 and you're at 3. jeb, you're a nice guys, but you're a lightweight and i know
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for a fact that you pea sitting down. >> no, i don't. >> yes, you do. >> let's go ahead. senator, you said you were relentlessly carpet bomb isis. is this a real threat? >> well, wolf, if i'm president, i can promise you, isis will hate me. and how do i know? because everyone who knows me hates me. democrats hate me. republicans hate me. i have what doctors call a punchble face. politico actually did a poll and i was voted the candidate most people wanted to throw a beer at. so look out, isis. i'm going crash your party and just like every party i go to, i'm going to ruin it. >> governor christie, what steps would you take to keep americans safe? >> wolf, i would like to answer that with a series of fear mongering statements. >> go ahead. >> we are attack and we are all going to die. mothers are putting their kids on buses and these buses are
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being driven off cliffs by terrorists. today in our great country, one out of three babies born are already in isis. they are here, folks, and i am the only one up here with the stones to take them on. i am a cowboy on a steel horse i ride. bon jovi forever! >> okay. >> oh, my gosh. >> this is -- trying to start world war three. >> sir, we're not taking comments from the audience yet. >> very funny. very funny. let the record show john runitski did a very nice job playing wolf blitzer. what did you think? >> i think he was great. he doesn't bring the gravitas you bring. >> i've been portrayed by others. he did a good job there. >> he can't hold a candle to the real deal. >> this was very funny, you have to admit. the whole skit. >> the whole skit.
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the fact that these did cruz as unlikable i think is a sign of why they have some problems as the republican nominee. >> what did you think? >> i thought it was very, very funny, but not as funny as the actual debate. >> good democrats thinking about the republicans. what did you think? >> i think chris christie was -- he did say some things that were scary at the debate, perhaps not as scary as that. but i think you're the best, wolf. >> i've been portraying wolf blitzer for a long time. >> i think that guy has to work on the bass in his voice. but yeah, this was funny. i thought the inner play between bush and trump there making fun of the way bush is trying to go after trump and not doing it so successfully. so i mean, this is snl at its best, political season. >> that bush exchange was sort of devastating. >> to bush. >> to bush. bush is trying to get his strength quoent up by going after trump and they give him a swat right there. >> going to jeb bush events, you kind of hear some of the same
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thing as what the wofake wofrl blitzer says, oh, what a poor guy. when you're a candidate, you want somebody to say yeah! >> do you think he'll come back, jeb bush. >> i think it will be tough. he's chosen this route. nobody else is taking on trump straight ahead. >> can jeb bush come back? >> i think so. yeah, i'm so glad he's finally taken the governor off the race card and decided, i've got anything else to lose. i'm going to go after trump in a way that can matter. i don't know if it will work, but i don't think it's -- it's too early to count him out. >> paul, your heart is with your fellow texan, ted cruz. actually, i've been long on cruz for a long time as a talent and somebody that can win the republican nomination. i don't think he's the strongest candidate, but i'm not a republican. with jeb, it's been so
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interesting to watch this. everybody thought he would be the leader. he said this in one of the debates, when asked what's your biggest drawback, he answered honestly, i don't do anchor well. >> and the other problem is his lane is very crowded. you've got rubio and you've got christie surging now. cruz is basically alone in that comi conservative evangelical role. >> thank you so much for joining us. i'm wolf blitzer in washington. the news continues next right here on cnn.
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hey, what are ♪ having? ♪ ♪
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♪ this is where i bought my first bag of heroin. it was 1980, i was 24 years old. but in a lot of ways, my whole life up to that point was leading to this address. western massachusetts, the unlikely new frontier of america's war on drugs where heroin has become an exploding problem that's begun to touch nearly every family. ♪ i took a walk through this beautiful world ♪


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