tv Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN August 8, 2016 2:00pm-4:01pm PDT
favored bay million, they won by 2 million. that's all for "the lead." i now turn you over to wolf blitzer in "the situation room." happening now, breaking news. at risk, 50 national security officials, all republicans, signing a blistering letter saying donald trump would be a dangerous president, would put america at risk. they say he lacks the necessary character, values, experience and temperament along with the basic knowledge of the u.s. constitution and would be quote the most reckless president in u.s. history. pushing the reset button. sinking in the polls. trump unveils his economic plan saying his tax breaks with federal regulations will make america grow again. can that put him back in the lead again? and breaking with the family, neither of the former presidents named bush are supporting trump.
nor is former presidential candidate jeb bush. but jeb's son is baking trump despite insults donald trump hurled at his father on the campaign trail. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." >> this is cnn breaking news. >> the breaking news, 50 republicanis all of them former top national security officials have written a scathing letter saying donald trump would be a dangerous president and put america's well-being at risk. they say he lacks the character, values and experience to be president. appears to lack basic knowledge of and belief in the u.s. constitution and has shown an alarming ignorance of international politics. firms say trump would be the most reckless u.s. president ever and they say they will not vote for him. and just as trump tries to hit the reset button on a campaign plagued by some blunders. most of them his own making.
trump stayed on message today with the speech unveiling his economic plan. with a collection of tax rates, freeze on regulations and renegotiating trade deals. trump says his plan will make america grow again. even some supporters are questioning how trump could make the numbers work. i'll speak with chris collins, trump supporter. and correspondents, analyst and guests will have full coverage under today's top stories. let's begin with breaking news even as donald trump works to get back on track. 50 prominent republicans are threatening to derail him with the stinging letter calling him a danger to the country. jim acosta has the story for us. jim, timing couldn't be worse for trump. >> terrible timing, wolf. just as donald trump was trying to lay out his plan it make america prosper again, his campaign is dealt with one of its biggest challenges yet. from tops in washington, arguing the gop fails the
commander-in-chief test. former officials serving in republican administrationes from nixon to bush. in their letter to the nation they say none of them will vote for donald trump. from a foreign policy perspective, they write, donald trump is not qualified to be president and commander-in-chief. signing on to the letter first reported by the in, times former director of cia mike haleden former homeland secretaries michael chernoff and tom ridge and john negroponte. >> how the hhell can be he commander-in-chief? >> the speech designed to jump-start both the nation's con my and battle against hillary clinton. >> he is the candidate of the
past. ours is the campaign of the future. >> interrupted more than a dozen times by protesters in detroit. >> thank you very much. thank you. >> trump showed message discipline as he kept his cool. >> the bernie sanders people had far more energy and spirit. >> trump's economic plan puts a stamp on gop proposals and puts a moratorium on regulations and pulling back from global trade. by withdrawing from the trance pacific trade deal and cracking down on chinese trade practices, all while starting the pipeline project. >> when i am president, we will start winning again. big league. >> trump is calling for three new income brackets higher than his original proposal but one of
the top surrogates showed his plan. >> the plan doesn't add up. >> no numbers add up. >> the resurgeance is at a critical time. never trump movement is introducing a new name. he is a congressional staffer and former employee at cia and goldman sachs. anti-trump republicans don't want to give they're nominee a break. >> can you or anyone else get trump to stop saying crazy and offensive things for the next month. >> well, yeah, you know, you hear the rumors and it just -- i guess it makes for good fodder on the internet. >> now i see your trump adviser described this economic speech as an excellent start to the week. defining kpek tagss with a new policy. the national security officials say in their letter they have real doubts about hillary clinton and still end the letter by saying they believe trump would be the most reckless
president in u.s. history. wolf, strong words from some very respected people here in washington. >> they are. thanks very much. let's bring in dana bash. how damaging could this letter be, dana? especially at a time when donald trump is clearly trying to reset. >> right. trying to reset but also the kind of criticism that this letter presents. not just, we don't like him. it's, he is dangerous. coming from people who have worked along side presidents. i just got off the phone with one of the officials who signed the letter, senior official from a republican administration. whoed to me this started with two to three people who signed it. they just started calling around. this is a community, these people know each either. they worked together for years. and this source said to me, that what was surprising is how enthusiastic the people getting the calls were in signing the
letter and that over the past two weeks, particularly with donald trump's comments about russia. and the other thing the source said to me was that he and others travel around internationally a lot and how much they hear from other world leaders, former and present, about the concerns that because he is in this source's words, reckless, it'll cause others around the world even in especially america's enemies to be reckless as well. that is the genesis. you have covered national security for a long time. have you ever and have you ever seen anything like there? >> no. never a letter like this. from memories of the nominee party, national security advisors, former secretaries of homeland security, cia directors, director of national intelligence, all working for republicans. i've never seen something as scathing as this. >> no. as jim just said, we haven't heard from the trump campaign yet. one would think one of the things they would talk about is the fact donald trump himself
has been very critical of the bush administration and the foreign policy during those years. most of these officials, not all, but most come from the george w. bush foreign policy world. so there are fundamental differences in world view and i think is fair to say unprecedented attempt to write down pen to paper and show the world these poem who as a source i talked to are the closest to presidents the times of national he is chiropractority turmoil that they don't think that donald trump has the temperament to be there and this source said it would alarm our allies. quite stunning. >> it is. thank you. joining us now chris collins of new york. first member of u.s. congress to endorse donald trump. congressman, thanks very much for joining us. >> good to be with you, wolf. >> you have heard of this letter signed by 15 national security
experts. all served in republican administrations pledging not to vote for drup. let me read a couple lines from the letter and we will get your reaction. i'm quoting now. donald trump is not qualified to be president. and commander-in-chief. indeed we are convinced he would be a dangerous president and would put at risk our country's national security and well-being. the letter goes on to say once again i'm quoting, unlike previous presidents who had limited experience in foreign affairs, mr. trump has shown no interest of educating himself. he continues to display an alarming ignorance of basic facts, contemporary international politics. question to you, congress, are you comfortable ignoring this warning? how serious do you take it? >> i don't think this is anything i would take seriously. these are establishment republicans. george bush mitt romney type republicans who will not have a role to play in the trump administration. i can assure everyone, i do know
donald trump and he will put together a cabinet, the likes of which america has never seen before. strongest cabinet top to bottom from the secretary of defense to secretary of home hand security, director of cia. there is no one that should be worried whatsoever about how a ceo will tackle a job. not going to micro manage. but just more disgruntled republicans. disappointing certainly to see that i can tell you the energy behind donald trump and laughab consider the debacles of hillary clinton and barack obama. the threat of terrorism around the world. infamous red line in syria and now paying $400 million ransom to the chief sponsor of terrorism iran. all but laughable, frankly. and a sad way these 50 individuals look at that track record and put this letter out. it won't have an impact on donald trump a supporters.
>> take a look at names of some of the people who signed this letter. michael chernoff. michael hayden. john negroponte. tom ridge. these are major republican national security figures. here is the question, if you don't care about them, who is donald trump going to put into these kinds of very sensitive national security positions. who is there inside his advisory board right now? >> i don't know exact names that come out but i would point to for instance list of supreme court judges he did release that certainly once and for all put to bed the thought he wasn't a true conservative. we've got 94, 95 days left to election. i'm confident you will see some of this rolling out. today is not necessarily the day. but i do ne that cabinet that donald trump will put together
will be second to none. not any political hanger-ones. >> do you know any potential secretary of defense, potential secretary of state, potential national security adviser who may be on a short list? >> i can tell you this, wolf, once donald trump is elected and that phone call comes i don't think very many people could turn down the president of the united states when it comes to filling a position and he will vet them and make sure they agree we will put america first. not cow to you down to russia, north korea, iran. we will recognize them for the sponsor of terror that they are. so donald trump, no one will push donald trump around and let's face it, between barack obama and hillary clinton, everyone has been ignoring them. enemies defy us and insulted our allies. people like great britain and israel. so this is, you know, i guess you could call it a tiny bump in the road but more establishment republicans who are not going to be part of the trump
administration. and the public, energy behind donald trump, this is something we will shrug our soldiers out and point to hillary clinton and the mess she made as of secretary of state and want tock secretary of status quo and the failures, the failures of the obama/clinton time and where we are in this country with the isis and danger and terror an to add insult to injury, $400 million of ransom that barack obama paid to iran, if we should be concerned, that is something we should all be concerned about. >> as you know the president denies that was ransom. let's not relitigate that right now. let's talk about poll numbers from the trump perspective very, very concerning. trailing secretary clinton right now by 10 point m in our new cnn poll of polls. clinton at 49%. r trump at 39%. she maintaines a ten-point lead.
looking at these numbers, has trump convinced the american people he is ready to serve? >> let's start with the polls. polls cannot determine who is voting. energy behind donald trump is like no one has ever seen. polsters have no way to poll. so they are using traditional methods which we saw in primaries aren't worth the paper they are written on. this starts, donald is raising money now. message about hillary clinton's failures. and let's put it this way. hillary hasn't yet given america a single reason to vote for her. where donald trump has been very clear. he is going to secure borders, bring back jobs, fe defeat isis make america great again. the best hillary clinton says, i don't trust donald trump as president. i don't know why you should vote for me but vote against donald trump. at the end of the day that's not going to be a good message when two third of america know she is
for your retirement, you wanted to celebrate the little things, before they get too big. and that is why you invest. the best returns aren't just measured in dollars. td ameritrade. we're talking to chris collins of new york, first member of congress to endorse donald trump. many high profile republicans are refusing to back him. among them both former presidents named bush and former president candidate jeb bush. even though jeb bush was routinely insulted by trump during the primary campaign his
son is now breaking with the fau family and backing the gop nominee. this is a rather surprising turn of events. >> wolf the people we spoke to who are close to the bush family say this is not a planned roll out for george p. bush. and say it's not an endorsement. but it is stunning that jeb bush's son urges support for donald trump in texas given the bitterness that exist between trump and his father. his campaign's become radio active pushing away more republicans by the day. many in the establishment wing of the party make making a point of staying away from the gop convention. not one member of the bush family there but now jeb bush's son is calling for his fellow republicans to support donald trump.
>> this is the son of the former candidate who endured these insults from trump during the primary campaign. >> he can't fix anything. he is a low-energy person. he's not tough, not smart. guy doesn't have a clue. he is like a child. a staff. embarrassment. you go to jeb bush's rally you fall asleep almost immediately. his family is so ashamed. call >> called him a puppet and loser. how could you support someone who says these things about your father. >> i don't think it is easy for george p. bush. i suspect he has about as much to support bush as i do about
hand-massaged kale. >> saying jeb and his son remain close and this won't change that. on those requirements she talks about, george p. bush is the texas land commissioner and is also appointed to lead the republican party's coordinated campaign in texas. that involves helping to get everyone on the ballot in texas elected including donald trump. analysts say george p. is under pressure from a gop power base in texas getting more conservative embracing trump's angry brand of politics. >> all advisers are people here in texas and they aren't thinking, i can guarantee you, about jeb bush's future, they are thinking about george p.'s future. >> george p. bush's extended family understands that. navarro says there is an understanding this is not an endorsement. >> you won't see him with a trump sticker wearing a trump t-shirt out there campaigning or fund-raising or any of that. >> will this hurt george p. bush's political future? it is said this is way to
protect his future and he has to be on the conservative wing and stay in their good graces. these are technically ted cruz supporters. neither george p. or jeb bush's offices would comment. >> we are back with chris collins of new york. first member of congress to endorse donald trump. congressman is the bush family's refusal to endorse donald trump hurting the republican nominee? >> no, month, not at all. i'm glad to hear that george p. said he would support mr. trump. this is about the future of the country. there's never been a more important race, more important election, than what we will see on november 8th. future of the country whether we take america back, make america great again, stand up to our enemies depend on who we elect and it is now a binary choice frankly between donald trump and hillary clinton and she is the secretary ofs of statto we cous
would continue on with barack obama. whether you are concerned about the 2nd and 10th amendments, defeating hillary clinton and electing donald trump is so our kids can grow up in the america many of us did, the land of opportunity. i'm glad to hear george p. understand that and say he is going to support. we don't care about the word endorse but support donald trump. >> as you know, donald trump revealed his plans for tax reform today. but still won't release his own tax he returns. the first major party presidential candidate since 1976 not to do that. why is that acceptable to you? >> actually, i would agree with him that to release his tax returns and give all of his competitors privileged inside information on the profits and losses of all of his companies which are private in many cases
would be something all of his competitors would want to see. with that said, his financial disclosure form, which lists all of his assets, all of his pogs, all of his companies, debts and value of everything that he is involved in is what america needs to see. we don't need a bunch of nosey nellies trying to knit pick how much money did he give way here or there or what the break down of profits are for everything he is involved in. i'm glad that him not releasing his taxes may end this cycle which has been going on for decades and for some reason feel theg need to release tax returns can which are private information. the financial disclosure forms are very intrusive. we all do submit those for public scrutiny. but tax returns were never intended to be that. and i'm thinking now with donald trump not releasing it, that's going to go by the way side and we will be able to stick with what we should, which is the
financial disclosure forms. which all of us release. >> should he at least release the tax rate that he has paid over the years. should he at least release the amount of tax related count by charitable contributions he made? >> you know, again, the nosey nellies might like to know what that is. when you really think about it, i don't know anyone in the united states that pays more taxes than they are supposed to. we hire accountants. we have the highest tax rates anywhere in the world. for people like hillary clinton that seems to think she should pay more, did she send any more? check a box that says i don't pay enough let me send more? no, she pays the absolute minimum every american does. so whatever the tax rate is, it is the lawful tax based on a tax code that is thousands of pages long and so quite frankly, what has tax rate is or was is a meaningless number. he pays his taxes in accordance with our current tax laws. and what more could you ask of
an individual. >> congressman chris collins, thanks very much for joining us. >> always good to be with you, wolf. >> coming up, surprising look at one of donald trump's top advisors. praising vladimir putin and criticizing u.s. squuuuack, let's feed him let's feto the sharks!sharks! yay! and take all of his gold! and take all of his gold! ya! and hide it from the crew! ya...? squuuuack, they're all morons anyway! i never said that. they all smell bad too. no! you all smell wonderful! i smell bad! if you're a parrot, you repeat things. it's what you do. if you want to save fifteen percent or more on car insurance, you switch to geico. it's what you do. squuuuack, it's what you do. chevy silverado to the aluminum bed of this competitor's truck.e awesome. yeah! first, let's check out the aluminum bed of this truck. wooooow!! holy moly. full on crack here. now let's check out the steel bed of the silverado.
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with us in "the situation room," and i will read another quote from the letter. mr. trump lacks character and values to be president. he weakens u.s. moral authority as the heard of the free world. he appears to lack basic knowledge about and belief in the u.s. constitution u.s. laws and u.s. institutions including religious tolerance, freedom of the press and an independent judiciary. >> the former acting director of cia who basically said the same thing about donald trump, i suspect that donald trump will tweet or his officials will say that many of the officials were part of the bush administration marched to war in iraq, the war donald trump says opposed even though he may have supported it
at first and opposed it later. this is like a ton of bricks on a campaign trying to get traction. every time they try to get traction something like this erupts. it shows through is so much animosity baked into the republican party. establishment wing of the republican party toward donald trump. >> do we have any clue, jackie, who might be secretary of defense, cia director, national security adviser in a trump administration? >> michael flynn's been out this quite a bit. but we don't. because the usual suspect who might be in line for this position, who might have been working toward this position, want nothing to do with donald trump. another thing in that letter that i noticed, they say that not only does he not have a foreign policy background and is he dangerous but he is not willing to learn. he has no interest in actually learning about the national security implications of all these things that he is saying. he just keeps on saying that. which is why you see more people
joining on to the letter from march of this year. >> first of all, it is centered around the george w. bush administration but not exclusively. you have people like william harry taft iv and even in the regan administration exalted across the republican party. we have brent, national security adviser for first president bush joined by carla hills. it goes across the administration. second point is this is a missile aimed directly at what i think donald trump's greatest moment in the election, in the poll yesterday be 61% said he is not qualified to be president. and every time they have asked that question for the last year and half the total variation is between 58 and 61% saying he is not qualified to be president this is as you know a as strong a voice as can you get. former administrations saying they don't believe he has the credibility to be president and it is among the college-educated white voters where he is significantly underperforming and the biggest obstacle on his
road to the white house. >> still haven't heard from baker or condi rice or -- >> you have her counsellor, chief of staff, head of policy planning, more than one of her counsellors. gives you the impression that if it really came down to it it would be interesting to see -- i'm sure condoleezza rice is not looking to get involved in the campaign but everyone she respected and relied on for advice the key people in her inner circle are all on this letter. >> a lot of people were surprised today that george p. bush, son of jeb bush, went out and it must have been very painful for him to say it, but he said we have to support donald trump after all of the awful things that trump said about his father. that was pretty surprising. >> it was. i think in the world of endorsements this one is low energy to borrow a phrase. george p. bush did not come out with a full endorsement, he said let's rally around donald trump to defeat hillary clinton. that's what the trump campaign
is trying to argue to never trump out there. george p. bush as they say about most bushes has a political future and because he is residing in the state of texas and the land commissioner right now probably has his eye on future and more important positions in the halls of power in austin. we will have to sound like someone who likes donald trump. landscape down there is very different for the texas land commissioner than it is across the rest of the country. that probably means supporting donald trump is a good thing. >> i can only i math ib jackie how painful and difficult it was for george w. bush. after all of us remember the exchanges between his father and donald trump. >> he said the bitter pill. i don't think he was kidding when he said that. not only that, remember noe no one in his family even went to the convention to support donald trump. but you know, at the end of the day h is about political viability and apparently he thinks that is the best way to keep it alive for future ambitions. >> in looking at the previous
example in both parties and modern times, gold water '64 with republicans and the overall level of officials departing from trump is at the high end of these kind of historical comparisons. it is very rare for elected initials in these examples to go out and say they won't vote for the nominee. we are at the unusual high end of that with coughman, hannah and kasich being uncertain. i think what george p. bush did here is what people typically end up doing which is saying he is our party nominee. we have to be for it. not actually offering enthusiasm and very hard as an elected official to say i'm not voting for our party's nominee. >> there is some but -- >> by standard, quite a few. >> we have more to assess. also coming up, breaking news. we are taking you down to florida where hillary clinton is firing back at donald trump's newly revealed economic plan. (vo) stank face.
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back after trump's big speech today. >> she isn't indeed, wolf. she believes there is in time to waste here. she is trying to keep this race where it is, in the driver's seat, particularly on the economy. she believes she she has the economic argument that resonates with voters. she will rally in a short time behind me here, wolf. hillary clinton blazing across florida. bringing her jobs tour to this critical battle dwrund state. delivering a sharp rebuttal to donald trump in an escalating fight on the economy. >> he can't escape the math. economists left, right, in the middle, all say the same thing. that trump's policies would throw us into a recession. >> as trump offered sharp criticism of clinton in his detroit speech today --
>> hillary clinton has supported the trade deals stripping this city and this country of its jobs and its wealth. >> a new cnn poll of polls shows clinton riding high. a ten-point lead nationally. on the economy, clinton is also seeing gains over trump. his lead is now hers. her campaign releasing a nine-page memo refuting trump's proposed policies and tax breaks for the wealthy saying they would be a disaster for the u.s. economy. >> they are just playing the same old siren song. and why they haven't learned, we are not interested in economic plans that only help the top 1%. >> and releasing a new video using his record as businessman against him. >> i am the king of debt. i do love debt. i love debt. i love playing with it. >> clinton blasting trump for outsourcing his company's products. painting him as bad for business in the u.s. >> donald trump said he can't make his suites or ties or
shirts or furniture in the united states. we're telling him about a hundred places where he can actually make all of those things right here in america. >> this has clinton is trying to move beyond her e-mail controversy. running mate tim kaine said she learned from the past and committed to change. >> she said it was a mistake. i know this something that she has learned from and we're going to be real transparent. >> but clinton struggling to square her statements to the fbi with statements she made to the press. >> i never sent or received anything that was marked classified. what i told the fbi, h he said was truthful, is consistent with what i have said publicly. so i may have short circuited -- >> trump using that comment to question whether clinton is mentally fit for the presidency. >> she took a short circuit in the brain and she's got problems. >> she is unhinged.
honestly, i don't think she is all there. >> she is taking a page from his play book. >> trump is not fit to be president and is temperamentally unfit to be command they're chief. anyone you can provoke with a tweet should not be anywhere near nuclear weapons. >> now all that back and forth, wolf, will continue again. it will return to detroit where she will give her economic speech and message on thursday. wolf? >> all right, jeff, thank you. jeff zeleny reporting for us. coming up, the surprising views of one of donald trump's top advisors. raising the russian leader vladimir putin and criticizing united states. see me. see me. don't stare at me. see me. see me.
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one of donald trump's foreign policy advisors is raising eyebrows by praising vladmir putin and criticizing the united states pm what can you tell us about the advisor who has been generating some controversy? >> what's remarkable is some of his public positions match almost word for word the positions of the kremlin on for alleged u.s. orchestration of pr pro-democracy protests. that is sparking concern inside the gop.
he advises donald trump on foreign policy. but his own foreign policy views on russia appears closer to moscow than washington. carter page speaking in moscow earlier this year. >> washington and other western capitals have impeded potential progress through their often hypocrite cal focus on ideas such as democratization. >> reporter: he accused the u.s. of being behind the protest writing that u.s. government officials played active roles in orchestrating the revolution. page is also defended edward snowden's refuge in russia.
together his positions on russia are sharply at odds with the u.s. >> it's an outlier of where the u.s. policy has been for the last 70 years. >> reporter: page, a u.s. naval academy graduate has business ties to russia telling bloomburg he mains control in gas suppliers. page would not comment to cnn. his ties to russia are drawing increased focus due to donald trump's own admiration for putin. >> putin had much better leadership qualities than obama but who doesn't know that. >> reporter: paul manafort was a paid advisor of victor
yanokovic. challenged about the campaign statements on russia by cnn, manafort deflected. >> i don't know anything about what you said. to say you know, i don't know what you're talking about. >> reporter: one of the lines from that open letter was quote, he has alarmed our closest allies with his erratic behavior. that speaks to his comments on nato. trump said the u.s. might not come to the defense in the event of military action from russia. >> very interesting important information. thanks very much for that. coming up, we get back to the breaking news. 50 former national security officials, all republican, sign a blistering letter calling donald trump dangerous saying he put would america at risk.
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breaking news, security warning. dozens of top republican national security experts denounce donald trump warning his recklessness will put the u.s. at risk and pledging not to stro vote for him. make america grow again. trump details his economic plans in a closely watched speech and stays on message despite repeated interruptions by protesters. can trump continue to avoid the
controversies that threaten to derail his campaign. independent bid. conservatives opposed to trump recruit a former cia official to complete a independent white house bid. his candidacy is clearly long shot but could he steal enough votes to turn one red state blue. a deadly final chapter in the deadly saga of a nuclear scientist who said he was kidnapped by the cia. what secrets did he take to his grave? we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." we're following breaking news. extraordinary rebuke of a republican nominee.
50 top national security foreign expert who is served in republican administrations spanning 50 years have signed a letter denouncing donald trump's presidential candidacy and pledging not to vote for him. the dramatic rebuke comes hours after the latest effort to get his chaotic campaign back on track. hillary clinton responded a little while ago accusing trump of repackaging trickle down economic with policies that would throw the united states into recession. a group of conservatives have recruited a former cia officer to launch an independent white house bid. evan mcmulligan worked as a top aide to house republicans. we're covering all of that and much more this hour. our correspondents are standing by. let's get straight to the
breaking news. the letter signed by 50 republican national security experts posie i opposing donald. these are people who held key positions in republican administrations spanning from richard nixon to george w. bush. >> i talked to two people who signed this letter who said there's a flurry of calls and e-mails among these officials in the last two weeks especially the past five days or so. alarmed over a series of donald trump's comments especially about russia that made them join together and speak out against their own candidate. a who's who in the republican foreign policy world coordinating an effort to stop their party's nominee from winning the white house. 50 former gop security officials signing a letter saying donald trump is not qualified to be president and commander in chief. we're convinced he would be
dangerous president and would put at risk our national security and well being. some high profile officials like former cia director and homeland security have expressed concerned about trump before. nothing like this forum. many of them non-politicians coming together to say they're not wild about hillary clinton but warning trump this control of the nuclear arsenal makes them alarmed. we're convinced he would be the most reckless president in american history. the letter was released just as trump was finishing his speech in detroit and trying to alleviate concerns those gop national security experts voiced like lack of self-control. usually when interrupted by proteste protesters, he insults hill. his policy speech was disrupted 14 times but he bit his tongue
except to say this. >> the bernie sanders people had far more energy and spirit. >> it was trump's attempt to get back to basics. >> we need to stop believing in politicians and start believing in our great country. >> a detailed economic policy speech but with a more fundamental goal, reminding voters he's an outsider eager to disrupt a broken system. >> our party has chosen to make new history by selecting a nominee from the outside and that's outside of the very, very already proven rigged system. >> trump made sure to reup his core anti-trade populist messages. >> american cars will travel the roads. american planes with connect our
cities and american ships will patrol the seas. >> he also used his speech to the detroit economic club business people to talk tax cuts and court college educated wealthier gop voters that polls show trump may be at risk of losing. >> we're reducing your taxes. >> he even dumped his own tax proposal and adopted the house republican plan. >> my plan will reduce the current number of brackets from 7 to 3 and dramatically streamline the process. >> he warned gop voters considering voting for hillary clinton about her plans. >> hillary clinton who has spent her career voting for tax increases plans another massive job killing $1.3 trillion tax interest. >> cnn's polls show clinton with a ten-point lead over trump.
to turn that around, trump has to bring college educated women back into his column. he hopes his new tax break for child care developed with his daughter will help. >> by allowing parents to fully deduct the average cost of child care spending from their taxes. >> we just got in a lengthy statement from the trump campaign responding to the letter that went out today that we started the story with 50 republican foreign policy experts saying that donald trump is too dangerous to be president. i'm going to read you the statement from the trump campaign. quote, the names on this letter are the ones the american people should look to for answers on why the world is a mess. we thank them for coming forward so everyone in the country knows who deserves the blame for making the world such a dangerous place. it goes onto say they are nothing more than the failed washington elite looking to hold onto their power and it's time
they are held accountable for their actions. these insiders, along with hillary clinton, are the owners of the disasterous decisions to invade iraq, allow americans to die in benghazi and the rise of isis. despite these failure, they think they are entitled to use their favor, trading to land taxpayer funding government contracts and speaking fees. it's time we put our foot down and declare that the gravy train is over. no longer will they get rich at our expense. this statement also talks about his vision for the country which donald trump is saying it's one that is not going to be run by ruling dynasty. >> much more on this coming up. thank you. meanwhile, the house speaker paul ryan is campaigning in his home state of wisconsin ahead of tomorrow's primary election. his re-election bid has been
overshadowed by tension with donald trump and delayed his endorsement of ryan last week as the speaker delayed his backing of trump a few months back. is ryan in any serious danger of losing this race tomorrow? >> no, it doesn't appear that way. in fact, the primary challenger wins tomorrow, it could be one of the biggest political upsets in history. he doesn't have the institutional support that ryan has. he's been meeting with voters, including today. he had two events this afternoon that press was allowed to go to. he spoke to voters about a variety of issues, including one he's been hit on from the right on trade. paul ryan has expressed support for international trade deals. he champion to push for fast track trade authority.
he said he's concerned about the tpp. the transpacific partnership. he doesn't think it has the votes in the house to pass and says it needs to be renegotiated. some recognition by paul ryan of concerns over this very hot button issue in his district, wolf. >> important election tomorrow. thank you very much. let's get some more on all of this. joining us republican congressman shaun duffey of wisconsin. thanks for joining us. >> thank you. >> let's start with that letter from 50 republican national security officials pledging not to vote for trump among other things. he's unable or unwilling to separate truth if falsehood. he does not encourage conflicting views. he lacks self-control. he cannot tolerate personal criticism. he's alarmed our personal allies
with erratic behavior. all of these are dangerous qualities with someone who wants to be commander in chief. how does he correct that? these aren't democrat who is are saying this. these are all republican national security advisors. >> first off, i don't think that republican or democrat voters know who these people are. voters are going to go to the polls in november and vote on hillary clinton's record and donald trump's vision for america. voters are going to look at what hillary clinton has done. when you talk about reckless and dangerous, someone who for 13 hours leaves four people to die in benghazi, someone who has a private server and exposes our secrets or allows the rise of isis, cuts a bad deal with iran. that's dangerous for our country. that's reckless. leading from behind is reckless. americans will look at that policy and look at what donald trump is saying about how he will fix the middle east. they won't give a darn what
these no name folks are saying. they'll look at policies of the two candidates. though it's a good news story, i don't think it's going to play much in the minds of the american voter. they'll look at the two candidates and make their decision based on them. >> you say no name. take a look at some of these. michael chertoff. michael hayden, former director of the nsa, national security agency. john negroponte. tom ridge. all republican, all work for republican presidents. these are significant national security figures. >> i shouldn't say no name. you and i know who they are. people who are involved deeply in politics know who they are. i think the average voter doesn't know who these guys are and really doesn't care about their opinions. i think the trump statement was a good one in that these are some of the same people who
brought us the iraq war that so many americans, the left and the right are angry about. it's been their failed foreign policy that is in conjunction with hillary clinton's failed policy that american now rejects which is allowed for the rise of donald trump. i think it could be a benefit because i think people look at his vision and willingness to call it the way he sees it as a breath of fresh air for our country as opposed to the same policies, the same people, the same viewpoint that's allowed the world to blow up and leave us less safe and less secure. >> just moments ago the trump campaign responded with their own statement saying the people who signed this letter are responsible for quote, why the world is a mess. as you know many of these officials served in the bush administration.
donald trump said his administration would be run, quote, would not be run by a ruling family dynasty. is donald trump blaming george h.w. bush and george bush for today's national security problems? >> i think he has in the past and is in that statement. people might look back to the iraq war and say it was a bad idea. you have to give george bush credit and these advisors because they buttoned down iraq and afghanistan and turned it over in pretty good shape and they have let it blow up and the middle east is now on fire. wolf, i think you have to recognize one other point here. washington is a small town. a lot of these folks like access to power. they like access to provide their ideas and their information to the leaders whether they are republicans or democrats. these folks have no pathway into the drumpb organization and they
don't like it. there's a little bit of a lash out here. to compare hillary clinton's record to donald trump's statement and call donald trump reckless as opposed to hillary clinton, is absolutely nutty. hillary clinton is the one with the horrible burning pants on fire record that has let america unsafe. >> a lot of these advisors are at the end of their career. they have no desire to go back and serve in the u.s. government so to suggest they are frustrated because donald trump doesn't want them in his national security team would be inaccurate given their histories where they work and what they're intentions are down the road. >> i don't think they are looking for a full-time job but they like to give advice. no one ever retires when you've given your life to foreign policy. i think the real issue here is donald trump gave a great nick speech today.
these guys, these 50 came out and dumped this letter to trump. a lot of news networks are talking about this letter. i think that was the real play and the real shame of releasing it on a day when donald trump was going to talk about how to grow middle class family mechanics. how do we put people back to work. how do we reduce taxes and rules and regulations and grow our economy and make us strong again as opposed to policies that are the trickle up economic policies of obama that have destroyed our economy. if you grow your government and your taxes and your rules and regular liegss, it never works. look at detroit, chicago. you can go to argentina, cuba, these socialists policies fail.
>> right now it's about 39%. second highest 25% and 12%. do voters have the right to know what donald trump has been paying in taxes over the years? >> i think they have the right to know has he paid his taxes consistent with the law. i think he should release his taxes. i think he should. i think hillary clinton should release her e-mails. she should release the donors to the clinton foundation. i think transparency in government is the best. e-mails, clinton foundation, those things together, i think the american people should have it because i think they can consider that when they go to the voting booth about what
decisions have each individual made and it's relevant. >> i think she has released the donors to the clinton foundation. she hasn't released the transcripts to the speeches she gave. is that the point you were trying to make? >> i think there are some donors, all the donors have not been released. she hasn't released the transcripts of those speeches. again, i think we deserve all the information about these candidates that we can get our hands onto make an educated vote in november. you're right. >> stand by. there's more to discuss. we have more questions right after this.
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donald trump responding to 50 national security experts signed a letter denouncing the gop. trump released statement of his own saying those critics are responsible for the war in iraq, the rise of isis and more. we're back with republican congressman shaun duffey of wisconsin. evan mcmulligan once served as a chief policy director. he's now announced he will run as an independent for president of the united states. he may actually be on the ballot in a few states. how concerned are you as somebody who supports the trump campaign that he could drain republican votes and if it's close in the state, say in utah, for example, he could hurt trump. >> evan is a good guy and a smart guy. this is the last dying gasp of the never trump movement.
i'm sure they went to 150 different people trying to see if they would jump in and run for president. in the end they got to staffer in the house willing to put his name on the ballot. good guy. i like him, but there's no hope here. i don't know they don't like that donald trump is the nominee but he is. there's a choice between hillary clinton and donald trump. to try to tank this right now, i think is a foolish errand and will be unsuccessful. >> i want your response to this because of the chairman of the american nazi party has praised donald trump for bringing white supremacist rhetoric into mainstream politics. we've seen continued support from these hate groups. what does that mean for your party? what's your reaction when you see this? >> you can't help people that endorse you. you don't ask for them. it's a free country. people can endorse whatever candidate they like. donald trump doesn't endorse them even though they endorse
him. i thought it was unique is today to push back against that endorsement when donald trump was in detroit he's talking to the african-american community. saying obama has been a disaster for your economy. there's higher unemployment, lower wage, less opportunity. i'm going to fight for you. i'm going to make sure your kids get a job. that your young people have opportunities and you can put food on the table again in detroit. i'm fighting for you. just what donald trump even said today on economics would push back against some kind of a nazi endorsement. >> thanks very much. >> have a good one. >> thank you. breaking news we're following. donald trump is firing back at do dozens national security experts. plus hillary clinton response to the donald trump plan. why she says it could cause another recession.
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our correspondents are here to talk about it. among other things, these 50 national security officials say this. from a foreign policy perspective donald trump is not qualified to be president and commander in chief. we're convinced he would be dangerous president and put at risk our country's national security and well being. it's pretty unprecedented. >> having this many national security officials who are republican also sign a letter is unprecedented. the language, i have to say in this letter, is stunning to me. not only the part that you just said but talking about how trump lacks the character, values and experience to be president. i think what they are looking at and trying to convince people to vote against him, obviously, and when you look at the polling you understand why. if you look at the recent abc news poll, 65% of the american
public does not believe that trump has the personality and temperament to be president. 58% believe he's not qualified. they are trying to push on that open door a little bit and convince more people who might be sitting on the sidelines to sort of say take a look at his temperament and this letter is very strong. >> dana, you got the donald trump's response and reported it a little while ago. very tough statement going after these advisors. let me read one final paragraph. i offer a better vision. one that's not run by a ruling family dynasty. it's an america first vision and makes other countries pay their fair share. we will break up the rigged system in washington, make america safe again and we will
make america great again. very strong statement from trump going after these individuals in this foreign policy statement. >> that's right. you and i spoke in the 5:00 hour when this letter first broke. we talked about the fact that my suspicion was that they would come back and say, excuse me, the bush world and the bush team many of whom signed this letter are the ones that got us into iraq which he says is a mistake and so on and so forth and that's what he did. saying this is the kind of thinking that got the world in a mess. they deserve the blame for making the world the way it is right now. having said that, clearly they have very different world views on foreign policy. to gloria's point, this letter is not so much about foreign policy. it's about temperament and about ability to be the commander in
chief. the words and terms are so dire. that's what is jarring to read from people who we have known and covered and when i talk to one of the officials who signed this, the key thing that he said was i and other people have been in the room with presidents during times of national security crisis and we don't think that donald trump should be that person in the room. >> david, has this election turned into an election of temperament, character? >> i think it's both. it is temperament like dana is saying. it's alarming to some of the these foreign policy experts that trump is not exhibiting in public some of the qualities they have seen in commanders in chief and have observed or worked up closely with. i think part of it is policy. some of trump's statement about russia and admiration expressed on the stump and conflicting statements about whether he wants to make peace but in the same speech he will say he's going to vanquish isis very, very quickly. these are the things that are
driving this foreign policy. >> he's got a real problem. take a look at our poll of polls. these are several national polls all highly respected. registered voters choice for president. clinton 49%. trump 39%. that's a ten-point spread. that's a significant spread that he's going to have to overcome. >> he needs to follow one thing and that's two words and that's resist temptation. he feels the need to respond to anybody that criticizes him whether it's on cnn or online. he needs to choose his battle wisely. at the end of the day he looks back at the day and say who did donald trump win that wasn't supporting him before. what kind of independent voters did he win today? i think he needs to take a look at his strategy and realize his base is already there and needs to think of how to expand this over the next several months. >> he was very disciplined today for almost an hour he read off a
teleprompter, a very detailed, carefully scripted speech. >> most of his economic policy was republican orthodox except for trade and except for the fact he didn't mention cutting entitlements or the deficit and how he could get the deficit down if he was going to cut taxes. chalk one up for paul ryan there. he kind of listened to paul ryan on that. i have to say in this letter, it seems to me like they wanted to throw a grenade out here. the last line of this letter is so stunning to me because they said we are convinced in the oval office he would be the most reckless president in american history. that is sort of saying to people, okay, maybe you're a republican, you like what he said in his economic plan, maybe you like his tell it like it is.
a lot of these people are diplomats. >> they are not politicians. >> they're not politicians by nature and these are the most direct words. it would be one thing to hear it from hillary clinton but this language is stunning to me. >> dana you heard the congressman from wisconsin saying this will not have any impact. most don't know who the national security officials are so it's not really all that big of a deal. >> there's no question that most people on this list are not household names. it's a former cia director and former homeland security secretary for a republican president. i don't think it's so much the individual, it's totality of the number of them and the fact that this could have been written -- you would almost expect in today's day and age to be written by democrats but to be done by republican s a whole different issue. the fact that we're talking about this instead of what the trump campaign was desperate for the narrative to be today, which
was not just the policy that trump put forward on his economic plan but more importantly the fact that there were 14 interruptions in his speech and he resisted. you can see him physically resisting the impulse to lash out at them and insult them. he made one funny quip they were so happy about it. >> his opponents will work hard to bait him at every turn whether it's hillary clinton or his republican opponents. we saw elizabeth warren coming after him on twitter trying to get him to go back to the poc o pocahontas rhetoric. >> this was trump wasted the week between the democratic convention and the olympics to turn the page and reset his campaign and desperate to reset things, get back on track and instead of talk about economics tonight we're talking about the
letter from 50 foreign policy. >> he took them on as elite no nothings who got us into trouble. we'll have to see what he continues to say about it. >> he said that these insider along with hillary clinton are the owners of the decision to invade iraq and allow americans to die in benghazi and they are the ones who allowed the rise of isis. he's got a tough response. every one stand by. we'll have much more. we have a lot more information coming in to "the situation room." we'll be right back. stop...
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scathing rebuttal against donald trump in what is becoming an escalating fight over the economy. today she aimed to draw a sharp contrast saying that donald trump wants tax breaks for people like himself, for wealthy while she will fight for middle class americans and small businesses. tonight, hillary clinton is taking aim at donald trump's plans to bolster the u.s. economy. >> he can't escape the math. economists left, right, in the middle, all say the same thing that trump's policies would throw us into a recession. >> at a campaign stop in florida, clinton accused trump of pursuing policies that favor the wealthy at the expense of middle class americans. >> his tax plans will give super big tax breaks to large corporations. he wants to basically just
repackage trickle down economics. >> clinton's campaign already hitting the air waves in florida looking to paint trump as someone who profits off of other people's pain. >> i can stand in the middle of fifth avenue and shoot somebody and wouldn't lose any voters. >> a poll shows clinton with a ten-point lead over trump. now some prominent republicans unhappy with trump are breaki i from their party and coalescing around clinton. despite her recent gain, her latest efforts to move past her e-mail controversy has become fired. on friday she said he short circuited her remarks. >> i may have short circuited and i will try to clarify. >> trump quickly pounced calling her unstable. >> she used the term short
circuited. she took a little short circuit in the brain and she's got problems. it amazes me. honestly, i don't think she's all there. >> clinton's running mate tim kaine defended her on sunday says she's repeatedly apologized for using a private e-mail server and pledging a clinton-kaine administration would be more transparent. >> i will not start thinking about how i will do things after november. i know that this is something that she has learned from and we're going to be real transparent. >> the clinton campaign also taking note of trump's july fund raising haul of 80 million. still 10 million shy of its own total but closing the camp. this was far more than anyone expected and should be wake up call to all hillary supporters.
in the latest cnn poll shows clinton is making gains over trump. during her two-day swing here in florida, she's really setting the stage ahead of what her campaign is calling major speech on the economy later this week in michigan. wolf. >> thanks very much. gloria, hillary clinton really going after trump on his speech in detroit today. she's got her own speech on thursday in detroit. trump speech was supposed to reset his campaign. did he succeed this doing that? >> i think he tried. as dana was pointing out earlier, he stayed on target. what set his campaign off today was the letter signed by 50 national security officials calling trump dangerous and saying, predicting he would be a reckless president. he was forced to respond to that. he will continue to respond to that. i think at this point in the campaign, staying on course is
very difficult for either one of these guys because they're going to be taking any opportunity to knock at each other. he gave an economic speech. republicans are going to like it but then something else happens. >> the key here, again, the bar is kind of low here in terms of message control. it wasn't self-inflicted today. >> exactly. >> donald trump did what donald trump needed to do today. his campaign did what the campaign needed to do today. baby steps, back to basics. talking about the fact he's not a politician. talking about the fact he's an outsider and he wanted to disrupt the way washington works because it doesn't work and trying to sort of embrace more of the republican orthodoxy on fiscal issues and he was blind sided by 50 people in his own party who say he's not fit to be president. >> it is a set back for him this letter from these 50 republican national security officials. how does he overcome that?
>> i'm not sure because it was a fairly effective speech. he gave something for everybody. republican insiders wanted him to talk about reducing tax rates and simplifying the tax code. it was that tax deduction for middle class -- sorry the middle class tax deduction for child care. there was a little bit of something in there for everybody. the thing was that it was overshadowed and the other problem is that, again, he's only got 90 days to go out and consistently deliver this message. something he hasn't been proved he's been able to do, consistently deliver this message. >> that strategy of donald trump being donald trump worked in the republican primaries but now in a general election he's got to bring in not just republicans, he's got to bring in independents and some democrats. that's why his advisors are saying you got to keep focus. you can't do what got you to this point? >> he said at some point in the
primary campaign, he can go out on fifth avenue and shoot someone and his core base would however there are a lot more out there who do not participate in primaries, on the democratic side and republican side. polls we looked at show a huge number of independent voters, people who have not decided just yet. those chips are going to start to fall. he needs to get on message if he wants them to fall his way. >> i also think what trump is seeing and what they're seeing in the campaign is that lots of republicans are starting to distance themselves more and more from his campaign, what he was trying to do today was give them something to hang their hat on, so they could support him. and that's why, for example, on tax cuts, republican orthodox, all for it, et cetera, et cetera. maybe not trade. but he's giving them a reason to say yes rather than a reason to step away. what these national security
officials did is say there's something larger than that and that's why you ought to step away. >> one thing to remember about him having his base -- sure, he does. he has the base that voted for him in the primary. and he got 14 million votes and so on and so forth, more than anybody else in a republican primary season. but there were a lot of other people on the republican side who didn't vote for him. >> right. >> and if you look at the washington post/abc news poll a couple of days ago, it sort of shows challenge that he has. 83% of republicans back him. it sounds like a lot. it's not nearly enough to overcome the fact that this is a divided country. >> mitt romney had 92%. >> exactly. >> and he lost. >> see how disciplined he is in the days to come, guys. thanks very much. much more coming up, including this. the intriguing and mysterious case of an iranian nuclear scientist comes to a deadly end. was he a defector or victim of a cia kidnapping? well, it was nice to see everyone.
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iran has executed a nuclear scientist who once allegedly defected to the united states but later claimed he had been kidnapped by the cia. elise lavin is working the story for us. accusing the scientist for spying for washington. what have you learned? >> that's right, wolf. hillary clinton tried to debunk these claims while she was secretary of state, saying he was in the united states on his own free will. his whereabouts have been unknown for years, but his death is a dark final chapter to this strange real-life spy drama that is now reverberating on to the
campaign trail. greeted as a hero when the iranian nuclear scientist returned home to iran six years ago, claiming he fled his american captors, turning down millions of dollars to spy on behalf of the u.s. >> translator: i was facing psychological warfare and pressure, much worse than being in prison. >> but on sunday, he was executed for treason. iran's judiciary ministry announced he was hanged for sharing iran's nuclear secrets with the enemy. >> translator: after due process, he received his punishment. >> he disappeared in 2009 in saudi arabia on a religious pilgrimage, mysteriously ended up in arizona where he made a video that aired on iranian state television, claiming he was kidnapped and taken to the u.s. where he was allegedly drugged and tortured. u.s. officials say he defected and willingly provided useful
information about iran's nuclear program. in a subsequent video produced by the cia, he contradicted his claim. >> i am free here and want to assure everyone i am free. >> reporter: by 2010, he changed his mind and wanted to go home. iranian television air aid third video in which he returned to his kidnapping story, saying he escaped his captors, a claim publicly disputed by then secretary of state hillary clinton. >> he is free to go. he was free to come. these decisions are his alone to make. >> amiri demanded to be sent home when he arrived at the iranian intersection at the pakistani embassy in washington. officials believed he feared for his family's safety. veiled references to his request in e-mails over her private server one saying, quote, our friend has to be given a way out. if he has to leave, so be it. these, after his heartwarming airport reunion with his son aired on iranian state-run tv,
amiri disappeared, clinton seized on the e-mails saying they put his life at risk. >> that goes to show how reckless her decision was to put that highly classified information on a private server. her judgment is not suited to keep this country safe. >> we just saw this tweet from donald trump saying many people are saying that the iranians killed the scientist who helped the u.s. because of hillary clinton's hacked e-mails. >> today the clinton campaign shot back and said the trump campaign never met a conspiracy they didn't like. wolf? >> our 11th anniversary, "the situation room" debuted august 8th, 2005. we've been proud to bring you news from around the world as it happens. we're passionate about what we do, honored to do it, honored to
have you as our viewers. thank you so much for watching. i'm wolf blitzer. "erin burnett outfront" starts right now. >> outfront next, breaking news. all republicans, donald trump shouldn't be president. tonig tonight, trump fights back. trump says he will bring jobs back to america. why is he hiring so many foreign workers? 10-year-old boy dead after riding the world's tallest water slide. growing concerns over missed warning signs. let's go out front. good evening. i'm erin burnett. out front tonight, breaking news. reckless. 50 prominent republicans with a damning assessment of a trump presidency in this letter, veteran foreign policy and national security experts in an open letter to the american people writing of donald trump. in part, quote, he would be t