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  Meet the Press  NBC  December 20, 2015 8:04am-8:13am PST

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legalization, i do not now and i will never support it. >> well, i'm joined on the phone by republican presidential candidate donald trump. mr. trump, welcome back to "meet the press," sir. >> good morning, chuck. >> good morning. let me start with last night's democratic debate. not surprisingly, the only republican candidate i think that was said, talked about by name, was you. i want to play one particular quote that hillary clinton said last night and get you to respond to it the. here it is. >> 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 jihadists. >> now, i know what you're about to say, no fact checker has been able to back up her claim on that. >> that's exactly correct. i was going to say that. exactly correct. nobody has been able to back that up. it's nonsense. just another hillary lie. she lies like crazy about
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everything. whether it's trips where she was being gunned down in a helicopter or an airplane, she's a liar and everybody knows that. but she just made this up in thin air. >> but let me ask you this. if you knew your words were being used in recruitment videos -- because i've had intelligence officials worry about this, you're right, there's no evidence yet. if you knew your words were being used, would you change your language? >> no, because i think my words represent toughness and strength. hillary's not strength. hillary's weak, frankly, she's got no stamina, she's got nothing. >> let me stop you there. >> she couldn't even get back on the stage. nobody even knows what happened to her. it's like she went home and went to sleep. >> why do you keep going on this? >> she couldn't get back on the stage last night i'll tell you why. because we need a president with great strength and stamina and hillary doesn't have that. we can not have another bad president like we have right now. we need a president with tremendous intelligence, smarts,
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cunning, strength, and stamina. >> there's a lot of things i've heard about hillary clinton, the idea, though, she did travel more than any secretary of state, it's a gruelling job, this is somebody that has been on the national stage -- >> she's sitting on an airplane, truck. >> so are you. >> chuck, she may have traveled a lot but she didn't do the job because the entire world blew up around her. so she wasted a lot of time and energy and money and frankly she wasted a lot of lives because her policies were disaster for the world. the middle east has blown up around her. her decisions were horrible. and hundreds of thousands of people have been killed because of her faulty decisions. >> i've heard you say that. hundreds of thousands of people. >> of course. >> where? >> what is this charge? >> how about libya? how about all the bad decision. how about where's going won the migration which was caused by her faulty decisions along with her president, her leader, our great president who is grossly
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incompetent. how about now? you look at our president, how about the iran deal, one of the worst deals i've ever seen negotiated in my life, chuck. i mean, it's just bad deal, bad decision after bad deal after bad decision. >> why are you so comfortable praising vladimir putin? >> i'm not. i didn't praise him. he praised me. he called me brilliant. he said very nice things about me. i accept it. >> well, you called him a strong leader. >> he is a strong leader, what am i going to say he's a weak leader? he's making mincemeat out of our president. he is a strong leader. you would like me to call him a weak leader, he's strong leader. i'm not going to be politically correct. he's gotten a 80% approval rating done by pollsters from this country. it's not even done by his pollsters. he's very popular within russia. that my change. but i didn't say anything one way or the other. he came out with a very nice statement about me and i said that's very nice, i'm honored by it and it would be very nice if we got along with russia, chuck,
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it's not a bad thing, it's a good thing. he can not stand our president. he doesn't like president obama. i think it would be a positive thing if russia and the united states actually got along and they could work to the mutual good of getting rid of isis and clean things up. right now we don't get along with him at all. >> but right now vladimir putin is the best ally iran has around the world and the best ally that assad has in syria. >> no. no. by making the horrible deal, one of the worst deals i've ever seen made in my entire life, giving them $150 billion, 24-day check periods which don't start for a long time after that, 24-day check periods, self-inspection, we don't get our prisoners back, our four prisoners, we don't get them back, we gave them $150 billion. we happen to be in its own sick and horrible way we happen to have been one of the great allies of iran, if you want to
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know the truth. and by the way, just to add to that, we also handed them iraq on a silver platter. we gave them iraq with the second-largest oil reserves in the world. they're taking over iraq as you speak to me this morning so we gave them one of the best deals ever made and, by the way, they're taking that money now and they're giving it to russia and others where they're buying argument which is nobody ever reports. >> do you stick by the idea that the middle east would be more stable today with saddam hussein and qaddafi in power? >> 100%. 100%. there's not even -- is there even a doubt in your mind? and you would haven't the migration and you wouldn't have people coming over to this country that we have no idea who they are and if i win they're going to have to go back because we have no idea who they are. >> and if you become president, do you let assad stay? do you let assad stay? >> well, you can't fight assad and isis at the same time. you have to fight isis first. and i don't say assad is good -- >> that's exactly what bernie sanders believes.
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>> well, that's okay. then i agree with him. it's okay to agree. i don't agree with him on much but if he says that, i'm okay with it. let me tell you, you can't fight them both at the same time. i say assad is a bad guy. but we don't know the rebels who are fighting. every time we get involved with rebel, look at libya, look at these rebels, look what they did to our ambassador and those young men, those wonderful young men. every time we get involved in benghazi, i'm talking about, every time we get involved with rebels, the rebels, they call them the freedom rebels, always nice names, it ends up being far worse than the people there in the first place. so assad is not a good guy. but the people we're backing, a lot of people think we're actually backing isis. so what are we doing? we have to get rid of isis first, assad we can think about later on. >> let me ask you to respond to your friend jeb bush and what he had to say about you yesterday. take a listen to the full quote and i'll get you on the other side. >> just one other thing. i have to get this off my chest.
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donald trump is a jerk. [ laughter and applause ] i feel better now. i just -- i just -- i gave myself therapy there. thank you for allowing me to do it. >> well, this has escalated between you and mr. bush. >> look, his people gave him that quote, you could see he was just saying okay, i'm ready to say it. jeb is a weak and ineffective person. he's also a low-energy person which i've said before but he's a weak and ineffective person. jeb if he were president it would be more of the same. he's got money from all of the lobbyists and all of the special interests that run him like a puppet. he's got 2% in the polls. i have 41% in the latest poll. he has 2%. he's going to be off the stage soon. he's an embarrassment to the bush family and he doesn't even want to use the bush name which is interesting. he's an embarrassment to himself and his family and the republican party has essentially -- they're not even listening to jeb.
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jeb is saying that -- by the way, he's only saying that to get mojo going but in the meantime i went up 11 points in the new fox poll. i went up 11 points after the debate and he went down two. >> very quickly, why has ted cruz caught you in iowa? we can dispute whether you're ahead by a point pour two, whether he's ahead five or six, but ted cruz has caught you in iowa and he may beat you in iowa. >> i just got back from iowa last night. i was there for a long time yesterday, we had a tremendous rally and frankly i think we're doing great in iowa. i don't know. i can't tell you who caught who. it looks like a two-person race, everyone else is way behind but i'm doing well with evangelicals who i love. i'm doing really well with every group. with the tea party groups, everybody, i can only speak for myself. we have a good team in iowa and i'll find out, let's see what happens on february 1. ted is doing well there and i'm doing well there and if you look at the numbers in new hampshire,
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i'm through the roof there and in south carolina i'm through the roof there. i'm way ahead in those two states. and ted and i are even, although the last three polls have me up in iowa, as you know. >> is it fair to say if you're not the nominee you'd prefer ted cruz? >> no, i don't want to say anything about that. but ted has been very nice to me, very respectful. very will be almost in every single instance he backs my ideas probably more so and ben carson has been very nice, also. i get along with -- believe it or not i get along with a lot of people on that stage but ted has been very nice to me, yes. >> i think everybody right now except mr. bush. donald trump, i have to leave it there, have a merry christmas, happy new year. >> you, too. >> i look forward to seeing you face to face. >> merry christmas, happy new year to everybody and it's been an interesting time. thank you very much. >> yes, it has, sir. thank you. hugh hewitt, what didou