tv Caught on Camera MSNBC March 20, 2016 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT
in a position to try to begin to reduce the deaths from the epidemic of gun violence, so i'm going to need the help of every single american. >> that's the end. thank you, secretary clinton. thank you for coming on, and thank you to the old state capitol here in springfield for hosting all this tonight. ati "all in" with chris hayes starts right now. some call his michigan win stunning, even a major upset. >> i have a feeling that you want a political revolution. >> bernie sanders looks to pull off more surprises tomorrow in what is shaping up to be another super tuesday. >> if there is a large voter turnout, we will win. >> but before those votes are cast, he makes one final pitch to ohio. >> this is a campaign of the people, by the people, and for the people. >> this is an msnbc special town
hall with senator bernie sanders from columbus, ohio. here is chuck todd. >> and good evening and welcome to the msnbc town hall with senator bernie sanders of vermont. we are in columbus, ohio, on the campus of the ohio state university, home, of course, of the buckeyes. tomorrow is a huge day in the presidential race. voters in five states go to the polls tomorrow, including missouri, north carolina, illinois, florida, and, of course, right here in the biggest battleground state of them all, ohio. hillary clinton has an edge in delegates, but senator sanders of vermont won a surprising victory in michigan last week and could do very well tomorrow. so let's get started and welcome senator bernie sanders to the town hall. [ cheers and applause ]
>> good evening. you know to always say the, right, when you're in ohio state. the ohio state university. >> got it. >> very quickly have you filled out your brackets? >> pardon me? >> are you a big basketball -- do you fill out your brackets? do you do a march madness bracket? >> i have been a little preoccupied. >> a little bit. fair enough. and vermont didn't make it, the catamounts. let me start with the tone of the campaign. marco rubio said this morning, we are now a nation where people hate each other. it was sort of a stark and obviously he's reacting to the donald trump rallies. >> i don't agree with that at all. i understand where senator rubio is coming from. what he is disturbed about and what i am disturbed about is we have a major candidate for president of the united states, donald trump, who is literally inciting violence among his supporters. when he says that he is prepared
to pay the legal fees for somebody who sucker punches somebody, what he is really essentially saying is go do it, supporters. >> it's a permission slip? >> absolutely. it's more than a permission slip. it's an enticement. it's saying you can beat up people. that's what this campaign is about and don't worry about it. i will pay the legal fees. it's a good thing to do. that is outrageous. i think senator rubio -- look, i have a lot of differences with senator rubio but we live in the same world and weapons of mass destruction in america violence is not part of what politics is supposed to be about. we have had huge rallies all over this country. we've got five rallies today, and, you know, we don't -- we just don't -- >> what do you do with protesters? every major candidate gets them. >> what you do is you have security escort them out, period. that's okay. i mean, people don't have a right to disrupt rallies, but no one intimates that there's going to be violence against that person. that's absolutely wrong. >> look, donald trump's been
pinning the blame on you for all this. let me play that sound. >> that's a bernie supporter, folks. got the bernie sign. were you put in here by bernie. bernie, bernie, our communist friend who is running. they had all professionally made signs. they're holding them up. it says bernie on them. bernie. it's organized by the group that endorsed bernie. >> he's actually -- senator sanders, he's referring i think to move on is what he's doing because move on has endorsed you. any role your campaign is playing in this? >> absolutely not. we have millions of supporters. today someone -- my supporters will do this, they will do that. there was zero effort on the part of my campaign to organize any disruption at trump's campaign. i got to say this, and, you know, if you know me, i have never run a negative tv ad in my life. we respect our opponents. people in vermont know that.
and i know marco rubio and i know ted cruz and all these guys, but with trump what you are dealing with, and i say this without any joy this, guy is a pathological liar. >> what do you mean by that? that's almost a clinical -- >> well, it is. politico had a piece in the paper. it's very hard to fact check him because he never has any facts. he just -- you know, bernie sanders is a communist. that's total, absolute, complete lie, and he goes on from there. so it is very difficult dealing with some guy who lies all the time and what i think senator rubio and many of us feel is this is a guy who is inciting violence. but let's get beyond mr. trump and let's deal with the issues facing the american people. >> exactly. here is what's got to be uncomfortable, because on a couple issues, and they're not small issues, particularly here in ohio, you and donald trump share the same position, for instance on trade. and i have gone to your rallies and i have gone to his rallies.
and when you ask him if not trump or if not sanders, i'm not saying a majority of your supporters or a majority of his, but you hear trump supporters say i like what he hear from bernie sanders or sanders supporters i like what i'm hearing from trump and usually it's because of the income and the trade issue. >> let's deal with it. one of the major differences between secretary clinton and myself is our views on trade and the record that we have on trade. chuck, i was elected to the house of representatives for vermont in 1991 i took office and i could see in five minutes that these trade agreements were written by corporate america, that their major function were to allow corporate america to shut down in ohio, shut down in vermont, by the way, shut down all over this country plants, move to low-wage countries, pay people pennies an hour and bring those products back into this country. not only did i vote against all of these trade agreements, nafta, pntr with china, i was on the picket lines in early 1990s
with the unions. we understood what was going on, please, and secretary clinton, or on the other hand, supported all these trade agreements -- >> she's now on your side on this. >> she's now on my side on many issues, but the question is where were you when it mattered? and what it mattered in the 1990s was to say, sorry, we're not going to create trade policies which are going to throw millions of american workers out on the street, and, by the way, it is not only the loss of millions of jobs because of nafta and pntr with china where companies are searching for cheap labor around the world, there's something else that we don't discuss and it's what we call the race to the bottom. recently there's been a little bit of an uptick in manufacturing in america. that's a good thing. but many of these new manufacturing jobs are now paying significantly less than they used to pay 20 or 30 years ago. >> it's the global competitive -- >> no.
it is trade policies by which corporations are now able to say to workers, look, chuck, you got a choice. either going to take a cut in your wages and health benefits or i'm moving to china. what's your choice? >> it it is part of disastrous trade policies. if elected president of the united states, i will significantly change those trade policy approximates. >> there's another aspect of these trade deals though and that is they do help raise people out of poverty in third-world countries so there is that aspect of it. this is something you have been fighting for your life -- >> i hope that everybody in our country understands this there's massive poverty all over the world, and it as a wealthy natii believe we have a more obligation to lift up the poorest people but you can do it without destroying the middle class of this country. count me in as somebody who will work day and night with other major countries to help poor people, but you do not have to
drive wages down and throw american workers out on the street and that is a big difference between secretary clinton and myself in terms of our record. >> it's interesting, if she's the nominee against donald trump, he is closer to you on trade than she is? is that an issue? >> yes, it's an issue. let me tell you something that i think objective political scientists would agree with. it's not just that in the last nbc poll we were 18 points ahead of trump, and i think clinton was 13 -- >> 11 to 13. >> 11 to 13. and that is true of most of the polls. >> so you both win. >> let me finish. we almost always, not always, almost always do better against trump than she does, sometimes by big numbers. what i think objective political scientists would tell you is that in a general election we will, of course, get the vast majority of the democratic votes, but we will do better
within independent voters. we will, in fact, get those voters here in the midwest who are concerned about trade. why would you vote for hillary clinton if she supported virtually all of these trade agreements. >> let me ask you, what do you tell a trump -- if you could go to a trump -- speak to a trump rally, forget that we talk about the other parts of it, but they are concerned about the same issues but they're going to him and not you. >> all right. >> how do you convince them to come to you. >> hold it, hold it, hold it. i mean, you know, we are getting millions of people coming to us -- >> i totally understand -- >> this is what i would say and, by the way, you have heard me say this before, that i think the media has not done a good job in discussing why the middle class of this country is disappearing and why we have more income and wealth inequality than almost any other major country on earth. if you're a trump supporter, let's say you're a 50-year-old guy, and your job went to china. you know what? you're really angry because now you have a job that maybe pays
you 50% or 60% of what you used to have. you can't afford to send your kid to college. you are angry and meanwhile you're seeing almost all new wealth and income going to the top 1%, an issue you guys should talk about a little bit more as well. >> fair enough. >> all right. you're angry, and then trump comes along and says you know what? you're angry, you should be angry, it's the fault of the muslims. it's the fault of the mexicans. well, the problem is that as racism, that is xenophobia, and it has nothing to do with the real causes of the problem. so what i say to the trump supporters, i say, look, do you understand that donald trump thinks that the $7.25 an hour minimum wage is as high as they should go? they say really? that's a starvation wage. i say did you hear trump on a national republican debate where he said wages in america are too high? really? too high? that trump believes that climate change is a hoax emanating from
china? really? no kidding. that's pretty crazy. that trump wants to give hundreds of billions of dollars in tax breaks to family -- billionaire families like himself? i didn't know that. in other words, it is not just that i think we will defeat trump because the american people do not think we should be divided up. this guy has insulted mexicans, muslims, women. he's insulted veterans. john mccain, a war hero. the american people are not going to vote for somebody like that. >> let's go to some questions. kevin pengrace has the first question. kevin, go ahead. >> throughout your career in congress you ran as an independent while caucuses with the democrats. i'm curious what went into your decision to run for president as a democrat. wouldn't it be more revolutionary to -- >> the problem is chuck would not have me on his program if i did that. >> that is not true. >> oh, sure --
>> we love independents running. the more the merrier. >> here is the truth. you are right, i'm the longest serving independent in the history of the united states congress, and when we gave some thought to running for president and the reason i gave thought honestly is not because i disrespect secretary clinton. i have known her for 25 years and i respect her. but i just happen to believe that in this moment of history given the crises that we face, it is too late for establishment politics and establishment economics. so we did have to make that decision. do you run as an independent. do you run within the democratic party? we concluded and i think it was absolutely the right decision that, a, in terms of media coverage, you have to run within the democratic party. number two, that to run as an independent, you need -- you could be a billionaire. if you're a billionaire you can do that. i'm not a billionaire. so the structure of american politics today is such that i thought the right effort was to run within the democratic party. as you've indicated, i have been a member of the democratic caucus for 25 years, in the
house 16, in the senate 9 years. we work very closely with democrats. obviously i have been one of the strongest opponents of right wing republicanism, so i felt comfortable doing it and i think it was the right decision. >> you've talked about your campaign as a revolution -- thank you very much, kevin. you talked about your campaign as a revolution. the turnout excitement is happening on the republican. hasn't happened on the democratic -- >> that is absolutely -- >> haven't seen the high turnout -- >> that's absolutely incorrect. >> the numbers show it. >> the numbers are very clear. look, when you talk about that, you're comparing us to 2008 and barack obama. all right? barack obama ran a campaign that was unbelievable. it was one of the great campaigns in american history. but you know what? despite that -- >> a revolution? >> well, in terms of the nature of his campaign, the turnout was off the wall. in iowa they ran out of ballots. you remember that. so let's talk about it. in kansas actually the numbers in the kansas caucus were higher this year than they were in 2008.
in maine, they were higher. in michigan it was the highest turnout since 1972. colorado i think it didn't break the record, it came pretty close. so, in fact, if you only want to compare us to 2008 which was the exception, okay, but, in fact, the turnouts have been extraordinary and i am proud of that. >> the any question comes from christian gray. >> superdelegates make it possible for a democratic candidate to win the nomination without winning a majority of votes. in this election particularly it has also been a large contributor to ideas about secretary clinton's inevitability. i feel like superdelegates do the opposite of empowering democratic voters like myself. so my question is what can democrats like me do to fix this process? >> this is what you can do. thank you. that's an excellent question. i fully concede to what everybody understands. secretary clinton is the candidate of the establishment,
all right? so she has all of the governors, almost all of the mayors, all the congressmen, all the senators, it is true, and many of them are superdelegates, but here is what is really weird. we won new hampshire by over 20 points. we are to take on the governor and we are to take on a united states senator, and yet it is likely that superdelegates in that state will actually vote or are intending to vote for secretary clinton despite the fact that the people in that state is spoken strongly for me. so to answer your question i think what people should be saying to superdelegates, look, if bernie sanders wins a state with a big vote, why don't you vote with the people of your state because your point is a good point. what does democracy mean? i know legally they have the right to do that, i'm not arguing that, but if one of the goals of my campaign when you talk about a political revolution is to bring new people into the political
process, young people, working class people who have in a significant way given up and it is hard to do that if they come out and vote, we win the state, and they have superdelegates voting for secretary clinton despite the fact she may have lost the state by a big vote. this is an issue we have to focus on. >> if you're the democratic nominee, you're going to have a lot of power at the convention to change the process. will you scrap superdelegates? >> i think we will revise -- >> maybe not give -- >> i think governors and senators have an important role -- >> significantly reduce. >> what i am trying to do in this campaign is revitalize american democracy to get americans involved in the political process so we do not have one of the lowest voter turnouts in the world. rather, as i would like to see, one of the highest voter turnouts. you know, it's a funny thing. we have rallies, thousands of people come out. i would say 95% of them have never been to a democratic party meeting in their lives. i what tonight bring people, young people, working class
people in, because in my view what you got right now is a congress that is vigorously representing the interests of the billionaire class, not ordinary americans and the way we change that is to bring millions of people in to say to congress you know what? represent us. not just campaign contributors. >> well, with he have to pay a few bills so we will -- >> you're going to go to your wealthy corporate sponsors. >> i don't know who those wealthy corporate sponsors are but we're going to go to a break and sneak in a break here. when we come back, we're going to talk more about trade, more about education, particularly student debt and the cost of college. you're watching msnbc and a bernie sanders' town hall. hello. i'm chris jansing live in havana, cuba, and you are witnessing history. on air force one, president obama and his entire family.
when he lands here in havana he will be the first sitting u.s. president in nearly 90 years to come to this country. just 90 miles away from the u.s. mainland, but, of course, worlds apart diplomatically, politically. barack obama wasn't even born when fidel castro came to power in 1959, but he has forged a relationship with his brother raul, and he will meet with him tomorrow. last time we saw a president come here was calvin coolidge, 1928, but this president has joked that this time obviously he's not coming on a battleship. coolidge came on the "uss texas" in january of 1928. president obama will give a speech at the same theater coolidge did back then but this time it will be shown live on television. he's going to meet with dissidents while he's here. he will attend a u.s./cuba game
in this baseball-obsessed country but this is the moment many people both in the united states and certainly people i have talked to here in cuba never thought they would see in their lifetime. joining me to talk about it, allen gomez of usa today, christopher sabbatini is a top authority on u.s./cuba relations two teaches at columbia university. allen, as you sit here with me and watch air force one touch down on cuban soil, give me your take on the symbolic importance of this moment? >> it's hard to understate what this means for people here in cuba and for the cuban-american people in the united states. my parents left this country 50 years ago never to return so it's something they're still grappling with, something difficult for them, and that represents a lot of the k cuban-american community. >> americans overall polls show us largely support these changes
that the president has called for, even some that he cannot make happen by himself which is lifting the embargo. give me your thoughts as you watch this unfold. >> well, it's certainly exciting. we're looking at a fundamental change, not just in how the president has sort of shaped this policy but in a sea change in the way the united states engages with one country that has been sort of a holdover from the cold war, and also within the political system. we just saw marco rubio lose an election election, a primary, in florida based on the idea he was pro-embargo. you're looking at two sea changes, one is a geopolitical change, but also leaving behind the cold war and turning a new chapter but also within our own politics. as you mentioned, chris, the american people want to see the embargo ended. here we are, a president, the promised change, the promised new era is really bringing that to cuba and trying to change our own relations within the
hemisphere through what is admittedly a tiny country but under an infective embargo for over 50 years. >> this is the most dramatic symbol yet of the opening that president obama created when he announced 15 months ago that this cold war era relationship was at least going to thaw a bit. and certainly his most recent example of his approach to foreign policy which is engagement over estrangement. you came here when first, allen? when was the first year you came to cuba? >> 2003. >> how has it changed? what is the cuba that barack obama is going to see as opposed to if he had come here the first year of his presidency? >> change hasn't been that much. if you walk around the streets of havana, walk around different places in this country, you're not going to see that much change. this is a place that's been frozen in time for 50 years. >> everyone knows the cars, the
crumbling buildings, the beautiful architecture. >> they're all still going around. what has changed is raul castro since he assumed power in 2008 after fidel got sick and stepped down has implemented a series of economic changes on the island. so what's new now is there's about 500,000 private entrepreneurs that are working for themselves, paying taxes, very much like a capitalist system, here they refer to it as the perfection of the socialist model. a lot of regulations they've changed, a lot of openings they've created have been targeted specifically at private entrepreneurs so they can build that economic independence so that eventually they could push for change of the regime on their own account and not rely on the united states or any other country to do that. >> and you see it very much when you come here in what is the key industry, tourism, the number of restaurants that have opened with individual entrepreneurs, virs shops that have opened.
christoph christopher, what we also sym l symbolize here is the ongoing fact there are deep disagreements. cuba arrested dozens of human rights activists right before the president came here, and this is something else that has not only brought a lot of derision to his decision to come here but continues to race concerns all around the world. >> that's right, chris. a lot of people have criticized the president for going down too early or even for the changes that he made a little over a year ago that were quite dramatic within the scope of the embargo which remains law. it takes an act of congress to lift it. but clearly he made this as a long-term bet for human rights and he talked about human rights when he made these changes on december 17th, 2014. but the truth is the cuban government has not budged one bit on human rights. in the last month alone there have been over 1,400 temporary detention of human rights
activists. in the last couple days state security agents have gone around to human rights activists and told them to remain in their house and not try to protest, not cause any disturbance. as you mentioned and allen has where written about just today there were a series of new detentions that have happened of human rights activists. these are two regime that is don't see eye to eye. obama claims he's doing this for human rights but the cuba regime has always asserted its own national sovereignty and its own right to determine its own form of government and sort of its own form of control. you're looking at what could be a very heated couple days. i don't think obama is going to publicly lecture the government and i don't think the government is going to publicly lecture obama about guantanamo, but have not a new era of frip andendshi alliance. obama's claim is they can get it
resolved through two countries acting in normal relations better than they can in isolation. >> while many people will be watching to see exactly what the president has to say when he gives his speech, there's no one who is expecting him to issue an ultimatum to mr. castro and we heard from the cuban government that essentially issuing a warning to the united states to barack obama, don't try to tell us what to do, don't try to get too involved in our politics here. having said that, the change is coming, and it's no coincidence that over the last couple of days, we've had this series of announcements. starwood hotels which sheraton and other brands are going to renovate three properties here. airbnb has 4,000 properties in cuba now, but used by others, not americans. now they're going to be open to the u.s. market. a number of airlines, three
airlines, are going to start offering direct flights. this is going to change significantly the exposure that cubans obviously have to americans. already just in the last year tourism has gone up 77%. >> things have already -- things will change dramatically here. this is the first time i'm staying in an airbnb and i used my verizon cell phone to make phone calls back to the united states. that was impossible to imagine just a few months ago. and so the changes are absolutely coming but as we saw this morning, one thing that has absolutely remained the same is the human rights situation. >> tell me, you were with some of these protesters this morning. tell us your -- tell us about them, who they are, what happened. >> so it's interesting because the president would love nothing more than to talk about the emerging diplomatic relations, the emerging business relations but what we saw today pretty much ensures what happens will
be focusing on human rights. there's a group called the ladies in right, they formed in 2003 after cuban officials arrested 75 journalists, dissidents, civil rights activists. so the wives and the husbands of these folks who were arrested formed this group and ever since they've been marching every sunday. they go to mass sunday morning, they march in a pre-approved area but as soon as they get outside of that area, they get arrested. these detentions can last anywhere from a few hours to a few days, and today a lot of them -- we met up with them very early in the morning as they were getting ready to go on this trip and a lot of them were thinking the cubans aren't going to do that today. the president is about to arrive. they're going to try to show him a little respect and they're not going to do this crackdown. they absolutely did. there was hundreds of counter protesters who came and marched against them. they rounded them up, put them in buses, and took them away. what that means is this is absolutely going to continue
being a very dominant theme of the president's trip and some of those who were arrested today were actually supposed to meet with the president on tuesday morning when he has a broader meeting with sift righcivil rig activists on the island. >> sometimes they are released within a matter of hours, 1250i78s times it could be a matter of days. >> exactly. >> so the question is whether they're going to be able to meet with them and what signal that sends and why the cuban government would allow for this to happen on the very day, just a few hours before president obama was about to land in havana. >> i'm guessing christopher sabbatini, there is nothing about that or earlier this week, the detention of another well-known person here, elazaro sanchez, a prominent human rights activist who was detained because he was going to be at the white house and have meetings there.
>> yeah. this is clearly the cuban government is thumbing its nose at the united states and its claims of protecting and defending human rights and sort of asking for some sort of reaction from the united states. you know, in anticipation of the president's trip and to say, look, we're going to do this on our own terms. you're welcome to woman, we're welcome to have discussions but we are a so rip government. we want to control our own people within our society. it goes down to the fundamental different conceptions of government that these two governments have, the united states and cuba. i think it's important that this is not being framed anymore in a cold war situation. the fact that the president is traveling to cuba to meet with the cuban government and this is important, to talk directly to the cuban people. we have an african-american president of the united states traveling to cuba. on tuesday he's going to give a
talk that will be broadcast nationally without censorship and he's going to speak directly to the cuban people. you know, chris, you have been traveling around in cuba. cuba is largely african descendants. this will be a powerful moment. bridging a gap that has been separating these two peoples for a long time and i think that will be very powerful. >> and the skies opened up for the arrival of president obama and his family after what has been several days of perfectly clear weather here in havana. among that group is the cuban vice president. he will not meet with raul castro until tomorrow, although unfortunately with this tearic weather the schedule calls for him to be walking around in old havana which is a beautiful part of this city and something that americans who have not been here have seen pictures of.
it's also i think symbolically very important that he is traveling with the first lady and the first family, both malia and sasha. michelle obama's mother marion robinson who lives with them at the white house. this is something that doesn't happen very often. you don't see the entire first family traveling to these major trips, particularly recently, and the president has joked about this as the girls have gotten older, teenagers and get their own lives and their own friends, they, frankly, aren't that interested always in leaving their everyday lives behind and hanging out with their dad even though he happens to be the president of the united states, but this is a very family-oriented society, allen. i think just the visuals of seeing this family together is very powerful. and it sends a message. >> that's right. if it was the president by himself walking around down here, it would be very
diplomatic thing, a very political thing. but the fact they had that conversation at home over dinner maybe and, said, hey do you want to come to cuba with me and they all came down, that i think shows there has been -- cuba is different. cuba, because it has been off limits to americans for all these many decades, because there's that mystery of it, that romance, that's why we're seeing so many numbers of americans coming down here. they obviously made it a little easier to travel but it's still not that easy. you still have to go through these complicated charter flights. it's a bit of a hassle to get down. it's not like traveling to most other countries americans travel to in the world. the whole family coming down just shows that sort of pent up interest in getting to this country and we're seeing that every day as we're walking around down here. >> as i have been talking with mee colleagues, those at nbc and print journalists, we have all had a similar experience that even as we travel around the world, it's rare that i get as
many questions or people saying i'm jealous as often as when i say, oh, i'm going to cuba. there is a fascination with this country. obviously part of it tied to the fact that anything that's inaccessible is something that people always want to have. you want what you can't have. but for this -- and here comes barack obama, michelle obama about to put up an umbrella because i tell you, the skies have absolutely opened. this light rain has turned into something of a torrential downpour, but he's got the umbrella, carrying it himself with the wave. you see the girls behind him sharing an umbrella. sasha and malia, have grown so much since he took office, and i believe behind him is marion robinson, and this is a fairly
subdued ceremony. often thighs foese formal welcon a president travels to a foreign country are held the next day and there is something of a more elaborate ceremony that is going to be held tomorrow. what goes through your mind, christopher, as you watch this right now? >> it's funny. i have been active for a long time in both advocating for human rights in cuba and also advocating for change in the embargo, and it's quite emotional, chris. it really is. i never thought i'd see this day happen. there's a lot of work to be done as allen has said, but to see him shake hands with the foreign minister, now he's going over to shake hands with the person who heads north american relations. right next to him is jeff de la rentas who is the u.s. ambassador to cuba, de facto
ambassador. it's very funny to see. not just because they're there but to see jeff and i, for example, have talked for a long time, he's been an old cuba hand at the state department, about a lot of the characters that the president is shaking hands with, about the changes and also about the human rights activists and to see all of them there, i think -- despite all the differences and i don't want to become too emotional and nostalgic or naive, there's jeff right now shaking michelle obama's hand, but it does make you think that maybe things can be resolved, that the beauty of personal relations maybe they will differ in terms of their interpretation of human rights and their long standing history and suspicion, but maybe in closed conferences and closed discussions they will see eye to eye in ways we can't fathom that may move beyond this human rights issue. there's obviously a lot of prot toll and diplomacy but it's pretty powerful to see these people now walking in the rain
to the motorcade and people that i have met with and talked to separately and to now see them together, it's a powerful moment. >> you rarely see in the foreign travels of a president, particularly in the last years of a president, something with the potential to be this consequential that has already been such a game-changer, and we should also point out that on air force one were some of the members of the congressional delegation that are traveling with the president. 39 in all. 5 of them are republicans, but some of them were on a separate plane. the ones who were aboard air force one, house minority leader nancy pelosi, senator patrick leahy, senator dick durbin, senator jeff blake. you see it is a bipartisan group traveling with the president. they are the ones who have power over some of the other things we talked about like the embargo,
who will continue to debate the future of guantanamo bay, but if i can take you from the policy back to the moment, allen, you know the cuban-american community. you said your parents came here 50 years ago. what does this mean to them? >> i'm dying to get back home and talk to my mother because i asked her a couple days -- just a few days ago before i was coming, understand, that's been somewhat supportive of all this. she embraces it, she's happy, she thinks anything that can possibly help the cuban people is a good thing. at the same time that means dealing with somebody who they fled, somebody who ended up taking their properties, whon d who did a lot of damage to a lot of their relatives. for so many of them, this is such a hard thing, i asked her pointblank, what do you think about the president going? it was the first time i remember
my mother speechless. it was happy, it was sad, it was confused, it was excited. that's why it shows how difficult it is for that community specifically to deal with what's happening. they want to see change on this island. they want to see a new regime on this island. obviously what's been going on for 50 years hasn't gotten us to that point. will this be what does it? obviously we've got to wait a little while to find out, but, yeah, there's a lot of torn, mixedmotions in miami and in other cities in the u.s. where there are a lot of cuban-americans as they struggled to figure out what this is going to mean for the future of cuba. >> and at hesitation obviously grounded this their own experience, what happened under fidel castro, what continues to happen in terms of human rights, in terms of democracy under raul castro. but is it even more than that something that tied up in that experience they can't quite embrace the idea that maybe they
can change, that raul castro will be someone who will truly bring about change, that we will have as a country given them something and gotten nothing in return? >> i think you can find a lot of cuban-americans in miami and at this point i think the majority who are supportive of these changes and what it could mean. i don't think you can find a single cuban-american that thinks raul castro himself or his brother will change. what they see is that this is laying the foundation for changes in the future. raul castro has said he's going to step down in 2018. there's a congressional meeting that's going to happen in a few months that's going to in large part sort of lay the groundwork for what the future of the leadership in cuba is going to be like. you know, it's a fun game amongst cuban-americans to figure out who is going to be the heir apparent, who is going to be the one that takes over, but they're looking to that future. i don't think anybody thinks
that raul all of a sudden is going to stop the arrests of dissidents or anything like that. i think they think that they are just too entrenched and they're too set in their ways to change anything, but what they're hoping for is that this lays that groundwork for future leaders of cuba to effect the kind of change they think is needed which is, quite simply, democracy. >> this is a tremendously moving moment for a lot of people and a tremendously upsetting moment for others. we see the beast, as it is called, the president's limousine with the symbol of the president of the united states and side by side the flag of cuba and the flag of the united states of america, and as you go around, there really isn't a lot here that shows you that a presidential visit is coming. often when we see the president go somewhere, the streets that are coming from the airport are lined with banners. everywhere you go there are pictures. the only one i saw was right at
the entrance to old havana by the cathedral. there was essentially a poster that had both raul castro and barack obama on it, but, wow, to see those flags, and every once in a while as i have been walking around havana, you see the two flags together. >> and i can tell you, prior to december 2014 when president obama and president castro announced that they would be re-establishing diplomatic relations, you couldn't find an american flag around here. that wasn't the kind of thing that you could fly out your window and go unnoticed. and being here since 2014 you started seeing a little more of that. obviously when the u.s. flag was raised over the newly minted u.s. embassy here back in august, we saw the american flag go up. we saw cubans carrying a lot of flags. it's a very simple thing, it's just a symbol, but the fact that countless places around you see
that now, it's small but i think powerful example of how the minds of people here are changing and how -- and what that bodes for the rest of the future of this relationship. >> as we see this tape from just moments ago of the president arriving at jose marti airport, he is going to be going immediately to the newly minted u.s. embassy for what they call simply a meet and greet with the staff there, and then he is going to be doing a walking tour of old havana, visiting the havana cathedral and other local sites that are in that culturally rich, architecturally beautiful area of the city, and when the president gives his speech on tuesday morning, something else remarkable, christopher, that's going to happen, and that is that it is going to be televised here. and so this is an audience very different than any president has
ever had obviously since it's been almost 90 years since the last sitting u.s. president was here. what would you like to hear and what do you expect to hear from the president for that momentous occasion that will be listened to so closely all around the world? >> that's a good question. i think, you know, first of all it's going to be a captive audience as you say. there aren't a lot of options in cuba for watching the tv. there's no cable. so he's pretty much guaranteed 100% market and there's not a lot of options even for having fun in cuba besides maybe dancing. people will be glued to their television sets. i think he's going to try to speak with cuba's future and as both you and allen said, this is a country that for reasons of the biological clock, fidel castro will turn 90 in august and raul is i think 83 or 84, the average age of the politburo is around 70.
raul castro has said he will step down in 2018, and so there's a generational change going on inside cuba that doesn't -- that goes beyond just our own antipathy and cuban-americans' antipathy toward the castro but long-term political change and i think he's going to speak to that. the aspirations of cubans and americans alike and to the bridge between cubans and cuban-americans. i think he will talk very much about sort of the similar challenges both peoples confront in terms of jobs, in terms of education and other areas that i think will really be very powerful to the cuban people. now, as you had said earlier, i don't think he's going to lecture the cubans and i think he's probably been scripted a bit not to talk directly about human rights but i don't think he needs to. i think if he talks about the power of freedom, the power to determine one's own destiny, the
importance of gaining access to economic needs, and as allen mentioned, raul castro has unleashed a series of economic reforms on the island intending to give some individuals the right to be able to develop their own businesses, to save money, to invest. that's very, very important for cubans in terms of breaking away from the economic control of the cuban state and overall. >> and we're just about out of time but i do want to -- i also want to point out there's going to be a pretty big baseball game in this baseball-obsessed country between the u.s. and cuba. there's also a little band called the rolling stones who are coming to town. so much to report on in the coming days.
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state primary day. if you want to call it that, throw in florida as well. senator sanders, of course. the next question comes from spanneden shaw. >> good morning. the violence against religious and ethnic minorities around the country especially in trump rallies is very disturbing and very scary especially for someone who looks like me. the people who support trump aren't going to have a change of heart even if he doesn't get the nomination. if president, what is going to be your approach in uniting the country and in particular how do you address those people who relish in trump's divisive rhetoric? >> well, thank you very much for that important question and it really is sad that you have to ask that question. that should not be happening in america. i remember we did a rally in george mason university a number of months ago, and a young muslim woman, she was raising her hand. she just wanted to ask this
question, so i brought her up, and that's what she said. that in america today when she was -- in america today she was frightened. this is not what our country should be about. people should not be frightened because they are muslims, because they are dark complexioned, because they are mexicans, and what trump has done is really, really awful. so what do we do? for a start, we understand that unlike trump, what america's strength has been and it's an extraordinary strength, is bringing our people together. i'm jewish. you're muslim. >> i'm hindu. >> hindu. there you go. all right. but that's what america is, and we have muslims here and we have latinos here. what an extraordinary opportunity. and we have african-americans all coming from different cultures helping to create this great country and learning from each other. what a golden, wonderful
opportunity, and that is what historically has always made us great. god only knows we have had problems with racism and bigotry in this country, but our vision has got to be to create a nation where we respect each other, where we love each other, where we do what dr. martin luther king, jr. said. do you remember what he said? we judge people based on their character, not on the color of their skin or their backgrounds. that's the america that i believe in, and i will do everything i can -- let me give you an example. just a few months ago i was with keith ellison. keith is congressman from minnesota. he is one of the few muslims in the united states congress. keith and i went to a mosque in washington, d.c., and sat down with muslims there. just to make the point that we are not going to let the muslim community or the latino community or any other community feel isolated. we are going to stand together against bigotry and xenophobia in this country. >> thank you very much. >> i guess how do you -- look,
we have a history that every time we have an economic anxiety, that there is -- somebody takes advantage of it by saying plame thblame that im group, blame this one. it's a 50-year cycle -- >> it's gone on a lot longer than that. >> every 50 years we have a new group. >> and it's gone on all over the world. what the cheap way of politics is, you see the minority, the blacks, jews, latinos, let's hate them. let's not focus on why we are where we are today. i try to have a rational discourse about why the middle class of this country is disappearing, why people are angry they're working longer hours or lower wages and seeing the top income and wealth going to the top 1%. that's the kind of debate we have to have. that does get us back to wall street. it gets us back to disastrous
trade policies. it gets us back to the fact we have not raised the minimum wage to a living wage. our campaign is about bringing people together to address the real economic issues. >> we're going to sneak in one more break. the bernie sanders town hall here in columbus, ohio, on the campus of the ohio state university. vo: across america, people are taking charge of their type 2 diabetes with non-insulin victoza®. for a while, i took a pill to lower my blood sugar. but it didn't get me to my goal. so i asked my doctor about victoza®. he said victoza® works differently than pills. and comes in a pen. victoza® is proven to lower blood sugar and a1c. it's taken once a day, any time. victoza® is not for weight loss, but it may help you lose some weight. victoza® works with your body to lower blood sugar in 3 ways: in the stomach, the liver, and the pancreas.
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welcome back to our final minutes here of a town hall, our final town hall before what we're calling separation tuesday, five big states are voting tomorrow, and we're here in columbus, ohio, with senator sanders. senator, i wanted to wrap up with there was an interesting piece of political satire on i think your new favorite program these days, "saturday night live," but it had an interesting not so subtle message. let me play the clip and get you to react to it on the other side. >> you're fired up, you're angry, and i'm angry too because the top 10% of the top 1% control 90% of the vote in this country. so, thank you, millennials, for lending your support to the biggest outsider jew in the race, hillary rodham clinton. >> obviously the point being she
is taking your message and adopting it. you were joking about it earlier, but isn't that a sense -- do you feel a sense of victory on that? >> well, i mean, i think secretary clinton is catching on to where the american people are, and, you know, she has evolved on the keystone pipeline. she's evolved on the transpacific partnership. she's apologized for supporting the war in iraq. she's apologized for supporting this homophobic doma legislation of the 1990s. so, yes, i suppose one can get satisfaction from seeing her move closer to our positions, but i think what the voters have got to decide is will she be apologizing 20 years from now for actions she takes today? what leadership is about is having the courage to do the right thing now even if it's unpopular and i think if you check my history, that's what i have done. >> well, i'm going to leave it there, senator sanders. thanks very much for participating. thank you to a great group here
on the campus of ohio state university. senator, stay safe on the trail. and stay with us here at msnbc, the place for politics. you don't want to go anywhere. we'll see you later. have a good night. this sunday, the republican establishment has tried persuasion -- >> mr. trump is a con man, a fake. >> it's tried school yard tactics. >> and you know what they say about men with small hands. >> and still donald trump keeps winning. but last night more ugliness at a rally. >> as trump warns of violence if he's denied the nomination. >> i think you'd have riots. iriots. >> but can he be stopped at a convention? john kasich, the last