Return to Transcripts main page


Final Super Tuesday Voting in Six States; Clinton Holds Early Lead in California; Clinton Wins in New Jersey, South Dakota and New Mexico; Obama Calls Clinton and Sanders. Aired 11p-12a ET

Aired June 7, 2016 - 23:00   ET


[23:00:00] JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The only question is, can Sanders somehow get the California trophy he so desperately wants?

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: All right John, thanks very much.

Let's get a key race alert right now. The polls are closed in California, the biggest prize of the night and it's too early to call for us in California right now between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. We'll wait for the numbers to start coming in. The votes to start coming in. They'll be coming in shortly. 475, 475 delegates at stake in California.

In Montana right now, the polls closed an hour ago, 32 percent of the vote is in. Hillary Clinton has a slight lead over Bernie Sanders in Montana, 48.6 percent, 46.7 percent, about a third of the vote is in in Montana. In South Dakota, a lot more of the vote is in, 87 percent of the vote is in, Hillary Clinton has a lead over Bernie Sanders in South Dakota. 51.4 percent to 48.6 percent. Twenty delegates at stake in South Dakota right now.

She earlier, we projected, was the winner in New Jersey as well as New Mexico. Important wins, a good night for Hillary Clinton, but the biggest of all, California right now. We're standing by to start getting those numbers. Once those numbers come in, we'll see if Bernie Sanders can upset Hillary Clinton in California, if he can do what he said he wanted to do, desperately wanted to do. And clearly, we'll see what Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton could do in California.

So far states won tonight, New jersey for Hillary Clinton, New Mexico for Hillary Clinton, North Dakota, Bernie Sanders has won the caucuses, North Dakota, Bernie Sanders has won the North Dakota caucuses.

Donald Trump obviously without any opposition, he's the only Republican candidate standing. He's won all the states in the Republican contest so far. He's well on his way, obviously.

Let's go back to Anderson.


And certainly Bernie Sanders speech, which we'll be bringing to you live as soon as it happens, that's the other fascinating speech to watch. I mean, if you are Bernie Sanders, you'd think very carefully I suppose about what you're going to say to your crowd tonight.

DAVID AXELROD, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes, I would think so. But he deserves to take a little bit of a bow, too, as has been said all night. He's run an extraordinary campaign.


AXELROD: Nobody would have predicted what he has done, and you could hear in Secretary Clinton's rhetoric echoes of the themes of the Sanders campaign and, you know, as others have said, he pushed -- he pushed her in a way that was positive and constructive and will make her a stronger candidate in the general election. So there's a lot to celebrate there.

The hard pivot to make is from, we're going to shake things up in California, we're going to shake things up on the 7th to making the transition to what comes next. And so he's going to have to find that language. That's a balance of celebratory and realistic about what the future holds.

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: You know, his adviser said look, we have to wait and see what happened tonight. Tonight has to be a disappointment to them. We don't know what's going to happen in California, but if they were to lose in California, they wanted to have this, you know, big finish at the end. And if they don't do that, I think on their plane ride back to Vermont, they're going to have a lot of decisions to make. And I think one of them will be, how do they disengage?

How do they get their supporters to be interested in Hillary Clinton? About a quarter of their supporters now say that there's no way they could vote for Clinton, that can obviously change. They have to have some deliverables from Hillary Clinton. And they have to feel like they're a part of it. You know, like they're a part of this effort and she has to make them feel that way. It's clear they've been talking. Brianna's reported that. And I think that that will continue, but after tonight, it might happen sooner rather than later.


AXELROD: We should also -- we should give shout to the -- I just, because I work with young people, I work in campaigns for them.

BORGER: Yes. Yes, absolutely.

AXELROD: The energy that young people provided to that campaign, here's a 74-year-old guy who was propelled by young people who want a better future, who want a more just country. Who want people to get a fair shot and who understand that there are things that are badly off course that we have to fix in this new economy and I think they deserve a shout out tonight.

RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: If you look at the cumulative exit poll, all 27 states where there have been exit polls, he won a higher share of young people than Barack Obama did against Hillary Clinton in 2008. This for a septuagenarian socialist who is a dead ringer for Larry David. Now having said that, he lost the race. I mean, he ran a great race, he ran better than anybody expected, but he lost it at the ballot box, not in the back room.

You know, the New Jersey margin is now over 200,000 votes, that means there are 14 states where she beat him by more than he beat her in any state, right? I mean, she's a three million plus margin in the popular vote. And one other point from the cumulative exit poll, 64 percent of all self-identified Democrats voted for her.


BROWNSTEIN: He stayed competitive because he was very strong, he was obviously very strong among young people. And as I said, he ran a great race.

[23:05:04] But when you look at it, with New Jersey again, 15 of the 19 largest states that have voted have now voted for her.


BORGER: Right.

BROWNSTEIN: And if California would be 16 of the 20 largest --

AXELROD: She -- she reminded people of the math in her speech.

BORGER: Yes, she did.

AXELROD: She doesn't want these questions about the legitimacy. And it's something that he cannot do in this speech.



HENDERSON: And it's something that their campaign is really worried about. I mean, this idea that in some ways the Sanders campaign has stowed that this system is rigged. Notable that she really praised Bernie Sanders up high. I mean, that was sort of the second major part of her speech there. I think they have this balance between Bernie Sanders and his supporters are going to lose this one but they still have to make them feel like winners.

BORGER: Right.

HENDERSON: So that's what they've got to figure out how to do that.

KAYLEIGH MCENANY, TRUMP SUPPORTER: That's quite a task. That's quite a task because here's the thing. Bernie Sanders supporters have been frustrated by this from the very beginning. For instance, when the debate schedule was announced and there were only six or seven debates. Most of them buried on weekend versus eight years priors where there were 20 something debate. The fact that she started with 400 superdelegates in her column a lot

of Bernie Sanders supporters looked at that and thought that was unfair. In the Nevada caucus where essentially a tear of the caucus was eliminated by voice vote.

There's a lot of Sanders supporters who've had a lot of beef from the very beginning. It's going to be very hard to all of a suddenly imbue the process with legitimacy.


COOPER: It was also extraordinary that Donald Trump tonight reached out to Bernie Sanders supporters so directly. I mean, he called out miners in West Virginia and elsewhere, and Bernie Sanders supporters.

DONNA BRAZILE, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: You know, 78 percent of our delegates are selected at the congressional district level, not at the state level. We don't have winner-take-all. We got rid of that after the Jackson campaign. And while superdelegates are sometimes a pain in people's behinds, OK, I'll speak, I'm not --

MCENANY: You're not.

AXELROD: Yes, you're a good superdelegate.

BRAZILE: There you go. Look, I'm proud of it. And as I said, Fannie Lou Hamer would be proud to know that I am occupying a seat that she helped to create so God bless her. But there's no question that we are going to have to do homework within the Democratic Party to strengthen our democracy to ensure that no American has to in stand lines like they did in Arizona for two or three hours to cast their ballots. We're going to have to fix the caucuses.

We have a lot of work to do. But the bottom line is that Bernie Sanders has been able to raise the aspirational hopes of so million of Americans. And here today in the District of Columbia, our city council raised the living wage to $15 an hour. I'm not saying that Bernie Sanders has cured all of our, you know, economic problems, but he has given voice to those who want to make change at the ballot box. And for that, I salute Bernie Sanders.

PATTI SOLIS DOYLE, FORMER HILLARY CLINTON PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN MANAGER: You know, losing is hard. Losing a presidential election is excruciating, and I know, it's really hard. And there are stages to it, right? There's -- first there's denial, then there's anger, then there's grief, and then you come along to acceptance. And I think that Bernie Sanders supporters are in between denial and anger right now. But they're going to come around. I mean, you know, back in 2008 the Pumas, as you recall, David, were pretty angry at losing when Hillary lost.

And even when I went to go work for Obama after she had conceded and said we're all going to be together now, we're going to support our nominee, I mean, I got called a traitor, I mean, it was high, you know, emotions, but in the end, we all came together. And that's what's going to happen this time around. (CROSSTALK)

MCENANY: I think this is a little different, though, because contrary to this instance where the superdelegates were on Secretary Clinton's side from the beginning, it was the opposite when it was your turn. You know, the superdelegates ended up --

AXELROD: Kayleigh, here's the difference. If you eliminate the superdelegates --



BRAZILE: She would still win.

AXELROD: If you eliminate all the -- John King went through the math, if you eliminate the superdelegates --


COOPER: Hey, one at a time.

AXELROD: She still wins. If you assigned the superdelegates in all the states that he won to her, she still wins. She flat out won this nomination.

MCENANY: You're right about that.



BROWNSTEIN: It's worth noting that in 2008 by some counts she won the popular vote. And again if you look at the cumulative exit poll she won more self-identified Democrats than he did in 2008.

BRAZILE: That's right.

BROWNSTEIN: In 2008. This time, she beat him among self-identified Democrats by 29 points in the cumulative exit poll. And it's hard to be a party's nominee I think if you're losing the people in that party by 30 percent.

BORGER: She also won -- she also won 14 of the open primaries.


BORGER: And he won nine of them. So even on the ones that we're open to independents, she still won. So --

PAUL BEGALA, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: I think it's fundamentally dishonest for Donald Trump to suggest that the system, which has now nominated Hillary Clinton, is somehow rigged.

BRAZILE: Right. BEGALA: She won in every possible way. He's doing it because wants

to make mischief. I get that, he's a politician, he wants to, like, throw gorilla dust, as Ross Perot would say, in every direction. But what I would encourage Bernie Sanders and his supporters do is just do a thought exercise. Go back in time, just one year. If Bernie Sanders in June 2016 could talk and Bernie Sanders in June 2015.

BRAZILE: Oh yes.

BEGALA: Bernie Sanders a year ago would say, well, what I would really like to do is to have a spirited contest and really push a message. Bernie is about mission more than ambition. And he would say, I guarantee, a year ago he would have said, I really want to get this country and this party focused on income on income inequality, on the way that Wall Street is hurting main street, on the way that global warming is threatening the entire planet, on the way we need to lift up the minimum wage, not just to $12, which many people support, but even $15 which is the highest by far we would ever have.

[23:10:19] He's won all of that.


BRAZILE: Thank you.

BEGALA: He's won. He's not going to be the nominee, it's losing --


MCENANY: Paul, it's not --

BRAZILE: Kayleigh, I know -- I know you have some love --


BEGALA: He has accomplished what he set out to do.

SOLIS DOYLE: And more.

MCENANY: It's not just policy, though, it's more than that, it's process. And this is where despite being very ideologically different on a lot of issues, Trump supporters and Sanders supporters have felt they were fighting a common battle because Sanders supporters rising up against Wall Street, we're rising up against Washington, and we both have felt that many times the process has been unfair.

And a lot of times we've had screamed in our face, these are the rules, these are the rules, even when the rules have seemed unjust. And fortunately for my party, the outsider won. I think Democrats have a real fight on their hand because you can't shout the rules, the rules, when the Bernie supporters have felt marginalized at every step of the way.

BEGALA: But the rules -- he lost by three million votes. You can't concoct a system of rules.

AXELROD: And in some ways the rules win.

BEGALA: Look, I don't like --

AXELROD: In some ways the rules favored him because he did very well in caucuses. Washington was a great example where he won the caucuses overwhelmingly. That was a beauty contest primary and she won handily. So I appreciate, you're doing good work here, but -- for your cause, but the truth is, Bernie Sanders did not lose this nomination because of problems with the rules. There are problems with the rules, he has a just beef about the debate schedule and so on. These are things, as Donna suggested, Democratic Party would be smart to address.

BRAZILE: We will.

AXELROD: And I think that will be part of what brings people together after these primaries.

COOPER: Let's take a quick look at the numbers as they're coming in -- Wolf.

BLITZER: Thanks, Anderson. We got a key race alert right now. Let's take a look at the biggest prize tonight. California right now, the votes just beginning to come in. About 1 percent, if that in so far. But Hillary Clinton has taken a very early lead 61.6 percent to Bernie Sanders' 37.5 percent. Very, very early California. 475 delegates are at stake in California. She takes an early lead.

Let's update you on two other states right now. Montana right now, the Democratic presidential primary, 32 percent of the vote is in, Hillary Clinton maintaining a slight lead over Bernie Sanders in Montana. 48.6 percent to 46.7 percent, about a third of the vote in Montana is in, 21 delegates at stake. In South Dakota, a lot more of the vote is in, 92 percent of the vote is in. Hillary Clinton has a lead there. 51.5 percent to 48.5 percent over Bernie Sanders. Twenty delegates at stake in South Dakota, a 97, now 97 percent of the vote is in in South Dakota.

If Hillary goes on to win South Dakota, that'll be an important win for her. A lot of people thought that Bernie Sanders could do very well in South Dakota.

Donald Trump, by the way, no opposition, the only Republican candidate left standing, he wins another state. He got all five states in five contests tonight for the Republicans. He takes California.

Let's recap right now. This has been a very good night so far Hillary Clinton. Six contests on the Democratic side. In New Jersey she is the winner. In New Mexico we projected -- in New Jersey she's the winner. 126 delegates at stake. In New Mexico she's the winner with 34 delegates at stake in New Mexico. Two big wins for Hillary Clinton.

North Dakota goes to Bernie Sanders. That's an important win in North Dakota for Bernie Sanders. 18 delegates at stake with the Democratic caucuses in North Dakota. Once again, we're still waiting for the results in California. But she's ahead in California right now. Only about 1 percent of the vote is in.

She's also ahead in the other two states that are still outstanding. Slightly ahead in Montana and ahead in South Dakota as well. In Montana once again about a third of the vote is in. She's got 48.6 percent to Bernie Sanders' 46.6 percent. 32 percent of the vote is in. South Dakota almost all of the vote is in now. 97 percent. She is ahead of Bernie Sanders in South Dakota, 51.5 percent to 48.5 percent.

Once again a very nice night shaping up for Hillary Clinton. The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee.

Let's go over to John King over here at the magic wall.

John, a very good night so far for Hillary Clinton. We anticipated she would do well in New Jersey, but she won in New Mexico. She's winning in -- very early in California. If she goes on to win in California it'll be a huge night for her.

JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It is possible, Wolf. It is possible. We're still counting some votes in South Dakota, Montana, and of course just starting in California, but it is possible she wins five out of six on the last big night at the Democratic campaign. You're seeing the map filling in. You know what you don't see is the District of Columbia which is a week from tonight, but as we finish in the last big Super Tuesday, let's just walk through them. 51-48 as you mentioned, 98 percent there. Looks like, you know, she's in play to win. We'll count the final votes to see if Senator Sanders could come back.

But if you talk to both campaigns, even get away from their spin on truth serum, they would not have told you they expected that to happen in South Dakota tonight.

We move over to Montana, this one is still very close. This is -- we don't know what -- how this is going to turn out, but again she's very competitive in the state of Montana and the Sanders campaign anticipated they would at least get these three tonight.

[23:10:09] That was her expectation. If she can take two of those then she's having a strong night. We've already called New Mexico, pretty -- you know, a strong performance by Senator Sanders, both 52 -- close to 53 percent. A win there for Secretary Clinton and this is it. This is the last big battle of the District of Columbia, those vote next week. But this is the last one here and it matters enormously what the final outcome is here.

Number one, Hillary Clinton would like to win it because she thinks that takes away any moral argument Senator Sanders has left about momentum at the end to go into the convention. Number two, for Senator Sanders, win or lose, his percentage is important because of the number of delegates he would carry into the Democratic convention to help him with his leverage in platform fights.

Where are we now? At just 1 percent. It's pretty meaningless in a state as big as California. In some smaller states, you get a look at their early, at least gives you a hint in a state like California. It is so big and so diverse, it's just dangerous and not worth making any bets with over 1 percent of the vote. But the vote is starting to come in pretty quickly. That's an encouraging sign we're getting some votes in early. Hope the rest of the count comes in.

Remember, good number of voters in California voted by mail. Early balloting process by mail so often those counts coming in pretty quickly. We'll see, and again as you just pop it out and look at it from perspective. Hillary Clinton entered the night 29 to 21 versus Senator Sanders in terms of contest. That includes the territories as well as the states. 29-21, there's 30, there's 31, it's possible 32, 33, and if she can get that 34 to 21, that would be a major statement by Secretary Clinton.

BLITZER: Yes. By all accounts and as her campaign always points out, she's already three million votes.

KING: Right.

BLITZER: Popular votes ahead of Bernie Sanders.

I want to go to Mark Preston, our CNN executive editor. You've got an update on the delegate count, on the Democratic side, Mark. Share with our viewers.

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: Well, Wolf, let's go through some of the numbers now. Of course Hillary Clinton has received 2,383 delegates she needed to become the presumptive nominee. But let's just take a look at the numbers of where she is tonight and where Senator Sanders is tonight. We'll get the number sooner -- rather, Secretary Clinton has picked up 87 delegates so far tonight. As you had mentioned earlier, turning out to be a good night for Secretary Clinton. Bernie Sanders has received 66 delegates so far with many contests in play right now.

And of course we're waiting for the all important California contest where we'll start to see some results out of there, but let's look at year to date right now. As we said, she's crossed the threshold of 2,383 but right now, she has 2,471 delegates. Let's break that down, 1,899 of those are pledged delegates, 572 are superdelegates. Bernie Sanders on the other hand has 1638, 1591 of those are pledged, 47 are superdelegates.

What we should point out tonight, Wolf, is that Hillary Clinton has become the presumptive nominee not because of what she's received in pledged delegates, but really a combination of pledged delegates and superdelegates coming together to get her to that number, Wolf.

BLITZER: Very impressive -- very impressive night so far for Hillary Clinton. But we're still waiting for California, the results are about to come in, in a much more accelerated rate. And we're also standing by to hear from Bernie Sanders. We earlier heard from Donald Trump, we heard from Hillary Clinton, her historic speech, now we're going to be standing by to hear from Bernie Sanders, Anderson, of course we'll have live coverage of that. COOPER: Yes, and of course when he talks to Jake Tapper just the

other day, he said really the onus is on Hillary Clinton to reach out to his supporters to get his supporters. I mean, is that -- is that the case?

AXELROD: She did it.

BORGER: She did tonight, yes.

AXELROD: I think she did it. I think she was pretty overt and gracious in what she did tonight.

COOPER: Is it enough?

AXELROD: But as -- no, I don't think -- this is a process. I think Patti really described it well. You cannot devote yourself to an enterprise like this and just come to full stop and say OK, you won, we lost, I'm with you. That's not the way it works. There's a process involved. I think it's going to take some time. I think the president can be helpful in this. They are talking to each other. That's a positive thing. But I think that Bernie Sanders needs to be able to turn to his supporters and say, you know the tangible things that we have achieved. This is how we are being heard. This is how the rules are being changed. This is how the platform will reflect our concerns. And I think you're seeing -- you'll see those discussions going on in the next few weeks.

HENDERSON: Yes. Yes. And you've seen some of that already. Some of the big three committees that are, you know, sort of planning the rules and the credentials and the platform, Bernie Sanders getting some of his people on there. People like Cornell West on some of these platforms, those are going to be -- make for some interesting meetings I'm sure. And then, you know, even tomorrow when do you see some of those issues around the platform start to happen.

You know, I think Bernie Sanders might end up with a very bad night. I mean, if these trends continue, he could end up maybe just winning one state, not the big prize of California. So he's going to help a lot of, I think, soul searching to do. He'll do that with the staff.

[23:20:06] And I think at some point you'll see things happen, staffers sort of trading places, leaving the Sanders campaign, going over to the Hillary Clinton campaign. We've seen this before. I think in some ways we exaggerate these rifts and usually they tend --


BROWNSTEIN: But, you know, there are two distinct pools of Sanders supporters. And one of them may be easier for Clinton in the end than the others. I mean, he had two big pools of supporters. One was that he was very strong, as we said, among young people. Won over 70 percent of voters under 30. In the end, I think it is very hard for those voters to get to Donald Trump. They may agree with his assessment that Washington is a corrupt system, it doesn't work. But -- it goes back to where we started. On the cultural issues and the views of the inclusive and tolerant America, diverse America, I think they view Trump as the antithesis of what they believe in.

The other big pool of voters, though, were those blue-collar whites. I mean, he won non-college white voters in almost every single state outside of the south other than Ohio, and in the end that may prove a tougher peace for Hillary Clinton to bring back because those cultural arguments may not be as powerful with them and those cultural arguments, I believe, are her most powerful weapon against Donald Trump.

BORGER: And those are the voters -- those are the voters that Donald Trump was talking about tonight.


BORGER: When he said oh, Sanders voters, come on over to me. Those are the -- those are the voters he obviously wants to attract.

AXELROD: I know.

BORGER: Look, it's not as if Bernie Sanders has been avoiding this decision. I don't think he's avoiding anything. I just think he needed to get through tonight, see where he was, they've been talking. As David is saying, it's a process. And they will get there. He just has to be able to convince his people that their voices has been heard and whether it's deliverables on issues, platform issues, minimum wage, whatever. He's got to prove it because he's important to Clinton. She's talking about generational issues tonight, attracting younger voters, she needs him to do it.

COOPER: How do you think President Obama sort of putting out that he was going to be endorsing Secretary Clinton? How important was that to get Bernie Sanders to sort of --


HENDERSON: I think big.



HENDERSON: Huge. I mean, I talked the Sanders campaign and it was clear that Obama was going to weigh in on this thing, and they quite frankly said well, this complicates things quite a bit.


HENDERSON: Because it's hard for them to go against -- I mean, it's the momentum. It's the party rallying around.


BROWNSTEIN: And it's worth noting --

HENDERSON: And it's Obama who's popular.


BROWNSTEIN: The core of his support has not been from within the party. He's only won one-third of self-identified Democrats. I mean, he's won two, almost two-thirds of independents who have voted through the process.

COOPER: Right.

BROWNSTEIN: So they may be somewhat one step removed from influence from President Obama. But still, I think California is bigger than anything else.


AXELROD: Yes, I think -- I don't think it was -- I don't think that it is a surprise to the Sanders people what Obama is doing.

BORGER: Right.

AXELROD: He's been pretty open about how he was approaching this. And I think that he probably was open with them privately and as we've said before, he and Senator Sanders had a long conversation over the weekend. He's been very respectful of Bernie Sanders. He has not stepped out in this race and, you know, he's waited for the verdict of the voters. And I expect that he will proceed in a way that is respectful of Bernie Sanders and what he has accomplished in this race as he tries to bring everyone together.

COOPER: And --

SOLIS DOYLE: I think -- I think President Obama's going to be crucial, obviously, but I think part of the process, the most important part of the process is Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders sitting down together. I know their campaigns have been talking, but you know, there needs to be some air cleared. They need to get some things off their chest, about what was said during the campaign and how it was said. And then they need --

AXELROD: Why does it sound like "Saturday Night Live" skit? I don't know.

SOLIS DOYLE: No, but seriously, and then they can get to the business of working together and where what are they going to work on together, what common ground is there.

COOPER: I just want to quickly go to Brianna Keilar who's standing by with some news.

Brianna, what have you learned?

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. That's right, Anderson. We're learning from the "New York Times" that the Sanders campaign -- this is what the "Times" is reporting that they're having significant layoffs. I did talk to a senior campaign official who would neither confirm nor deny this, but it's important to note that as we're looking here toward the end of the primary season when it comes to the Sanders campaign, you're not seeing the campaign putting people in resources in general election battleground states.

And according to the "Times," as they cite two unnamed sources, they say this specifically has to do with advance staff who deal with campaign logistics and events. And this has to do with some of those who are operating in the field, a source telling our Jeff Zeleny that sort of characterizing this, not exactly as layoffs, just saying look, a lot of these folks, their jobs just ended. They didn't have jobs anymore.

But this is certainly something that we've noticed here over the last few months. There have been layoffs before about a month ago during the campaign. All of this coming as certainly we're getting toward the end here and also some of the money to fund some of these has dwindled in the Sanders campaign -- Anderson.

[23:25:08] COOPER: Brianna Keilar, thanks for that.

Brianna, by the way, are there other campaign events scheduled for the Sanders campaign moving forward? I mean, I'm just trying to understand what actually will happen in the next several weeks. We know he's going back to Vermont, I guess, after this evening.

KEILAR: Yes, there is a rally scheduled for Thursday in Washington, D.C.

COOPER: Of course.

KEILAR: Washington, D.C. has its primary on Tuesday, Bernie Sanders has long said he wants everyone to have a chance to vote, and in his mind, that doesn't just go to today. It goes to the Washington, D.C. primary. So that's the only big event that we know of, but he's also in Washington, D.C. for meetings.

At this point, though, Anderson you bring up a really good point there. It's a promise that he's making to go to the convention, but we're not seeing a whole lot of resources to back up anything really going into the convention and beyond the convention.

COOPER: All right, Brianna, thanks very much for that. And so that is the question. What would this actually look like in the weeks ahead? If he wants to keep this going through the convention, does he have to keep doing events or how --

BORGER: He might, but he might also do it for Hillary. I mean, remember last time around, Dianne Feinstein, Senator Feinstein became the peacemaker and she had Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton over to her house for a drink. And she left the room, right, and they had this peace-making session.

I don't know who would do it this time, maybe Elizabeth Warren, who knows, but they'd have to get together. They want Bernie Sanders out there continuing to get his supporters, but there has to be some moment when they need personally and they discuss this.

AXELROD: I think that's going to happen sooner rather than later.

BORGER: Yes. You do?

AXELROD: I really do.


AXELROD: And I do think the results tonight are going to get --

COOPER: Let's just look at this, 13 percent of the vote in, in California. Hillary Clinton 62.6 percent. Bernie Sanders, 36.3 percent. Again, a lot of this depends on where that is.


AXELROD: That's going to close up.

BEGALA: That's early voting. That's early voting and Hillary's voters are much more likely to vote early.

COOPER: Right.

BROWNSTEIN: Five million maybe votes by now in California as the "L.A. Times" estimate.

BORGER: So they're going to have to get together.

BROWNSTEIN: Yes. And especially look, he has turned his help to a one-state candidate over the last few weeks.


BROWNSTEIN: Originally Tad Devine has said to me, you know, we want to go in the convention and do what Gary Hart failed to in 1984 which was when both New Jersey and California as a way of signaling momentum. In the end, they decided they had to right off New Jersey, she won New Jersey by over 200,000 votes. The 11th largest state in the country.

They made a one-state commitment to California and really put on an incredible campaign and barnstormed the campaign -- the state in a way that really -- no, I don't think anyone has ever done short of running for governor.

And if they can't, at the end of that, win California, I mean it's really hard to find an argument again with over three million more leading the popular vote for her. Her at that point winning 16 of the 20 largest states, lead in pledged delegates, superdelegates. What would be the argument for continuing, even if you do win California, it's pretty tenuous, but if you don't win California, it seems nonexistent.

BRAZILE: Well, he's made a commitment to continue to campaign through the District of Columbia which is a week from tonight.


BRAZILE: And I respect that as a D.C. resident. But beyond that I think the campaigns are now talking to each other on the credentials level, a platform level which as I mentioned has already started. Of course we have to plan the convention with the president's involvement and others. So there are backroom channels, backroom conversations and I'm not at liberty to the talk about much more than that because I don't know. All I do know is that we're going to come together. You all can just relax.


BROWNSTEIN: I think the president is going to want a "Good Fella"- styled tracking shot coming out on to the stage that Bill Clinton had in 2000 in L.A.

BRAZILE: Look, I've worked on a lot of conventions and Leah Daughtry who is the CEO of the convention, she's talking to all -- both campaigns and there's a lot more going on than what meets the eye and what we're talking about each and every night on cable television, but what I do know is that Senator Sanders has some incredible, good people on the digital side. You know, Paul and I know enough about campaigns to write another book, but when you start laying off staff, Anderson.

COOPER: Right.

BRAZILE: I mean, I've had to do that. Paul, we've all had to do it. It is hard. They have worked hard. They have traveled. They've lived on --

COOPER: It's a relentless job. I mean, you --

BRAZILE: Yes, they've lived out of a suitcase. They've missed all of the holidays, birthdays, and special occasions.

COOPER: We've got to take a break.

BRAZILE: Heading out tonight. So thank you.

COOPER: Still ahead, we're going to hear from Bernie Sanders in a critical speech to supporters. And the votes coming from California. Will he stand by his promise to fight or sound ready to help unite the party behind Hillary Clinton? Stay tuned.


[23:30:00] BLITZER: Let's get another Key Race Alert right now, California, a lot of votes just came in, 18 percent of the vote in California is now in. Hillary Clinton maintaining very impressive lead over Bernie Sanders. 62.8 percent. Bernie Sanders 36 percent. 18 percent of the vote is in, Hillary Clinton has a significant lead right there, still a lot of votes outstanding, 475 delegates at stake in California.

The other two contests where we still have not been able to make a projection, Montana, 34 percent of the vote is in. Hillary Clinton is ahead there. 48.4 percent to 46.8 percent, third of the vote is in in Montana. Ninety-nine percent of the vote is in in South Dakota right now. Hillary Clinton still maintains her lead, 51.3 percent, 48.7 percent. We have not yet made a projection in South Dakota. Although, I expect with 99 percent of the vote in, that could be coming up soon.

The other three contests we have projected winners already, New Jersey, Hillary Clinton we project is the winner in New Jersey, 126 delegates at stake in that state. In New Mexico, Hillary Clinton is the winner in that primary, 34 delegates at stake in New Mexico. Those are her two wins so far tonight.

North Dakota is the win for -- the win goes to Bernie Sanders. The North Dakota Democratic caucus', 18 delegates at stake. Once again, three states still outstanding. We're standing by to hear from Bernie Sanders. We've heard from the other two candidates. So far Donald Trump, we've already heard from Hillary Clinton. What will his tone be when he goes out and speaks? We'll have live coverage, Bernie Sanders he's out in California we're standing by to hear from the Vermont Senator. Let's go over to John King as we take a look at these three outstanding contests that are still remaining. Ninety- nine percent of the vote is in in South Dakota. We have not yet made a projection.

JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I've been looking at it while you were talking about it because of 99 percent, you figure where is it? It's a little over 1,000 votes here. One of the reasons we're waiting is because the vote that's still out, the biggest chunk of votes, and pretty much the rest of the vote that's still out, is here in Pennington County, which includes Rapid City. As you can see in this county, Bernie Sanders has a healthy lead. Is it enough to make 1,300 vote difference? Is it enough, give the math, to make it up? It's possible. It's possible. So we have to, cautious and let the votes come in and count them. But that's the missing votes right there in the area. Sanders has a health lead so it's worth waiting, be cautious and get it right. We'll count those votes.

And then you come over to Montana, 34 percent, very, very close race. You see 800 votes essentially dividing the two candidates right there. We're, going to keep counting in the state of Montana as this one comes in. But again, the Clinton campaign would love it if they stayed blue like that. Not a lot of delegates at stake, but it would send a message on the final day, but this is the big battle. The only big question left. Who will get the prize? The trophy for winning California, and what will the delegates split be, because this is the largest 400+ delegates, pledged delegates. Bernie Sanders wants as many as he can get for his momentum case at the convention.

Fifteen percent, you look at that and think wow, that's overwhelming, 15 percent. We do know the Clinton campaign, now up to 21 percent, and the leads holding. So that's a little bit more significant. We do know the Clinton campaign had a very aggressive mail-in ballot campaign. Normally we don't know looking at this, normally that's what's counted first. You see her jump out to an early lead, it's significant, you want to have a well-organized mailing campaign, but the day of vote, today's vote could catch up to that. As you look at this, if you're inside the Clinton campaign, trust me, you are happy right now. If you're in the Sanders war room, you are concerned right now, but I wouldn't jump -- let's get a little higher that 21 percent. Let's move it up just to get a sense --

BLITZER: Take a look at this, John. She's ahead by almost 300,000 votes. With 21 percent of the vote in.

KING: Any other state in the country, done. Because California is big enough. Let's get more of a flavor here, again, Wolf, when you look at that, she's going to be very competitive in California. That tells you that. That even if he somehow made up that margin.

BLITZER: Is she doing better right not in California than she did eight years ago against then Senator Barack Obama?

KING: Sure, 63 percent. She's running well head. She was at 51, remember you had a crowded field. So, Senator Obama was at 43. You have some of the other candidates uncommitted and some others. Sometimes there's a stat candidate. Someone who run in a campaign, but 51 percent then, 63 percent in the early results now at 21 percent, so this is the last big trophy. This is what they're watching.

BLITZER: You studied yet whether she's winning right now with 21 percent of the vote in the same counties that she won eight year ago against Barack Obama>

KING: Yeah, well look at big ones. She's actually winning in some places that he won if you look at this. Let's go back and look. The bulk of her vote, remember, this is it. I mean, this is 26 percent of the state population is Los Angeles County. If you take a look at that there. Let's come back down and just flip to 2016 a look at the early results, 65 percent in Los Angeles county. If she can hold that number with 0 percent. This is the very early thing of the vote. If she can hold that number. You can pretty much say she's going to stay.

And then you come up here, now these are areas where Senator Obama did well last time that she's doing quite well here. But it's still early. They're at 0 percent. Which means the first early votes have been counted and now we're waiting for the rest of it to come in. But again, if you're in the war room -- you mentioned that big margin from the early vote. That leaves you very, very encouraged. But it's a big enough state that you can have big swings. So let's wait and see some more.

But the significance of it, if that's days like that -- if these say like that -- we know she's already one New Mexico. We know she's one New Jersey. As we talked about early, the Clinton campaign wanting games.

BLITZER: Let's take a look at New Jersey for a second, John, if you can. I'm curious, did she win most of the counties in New Jersey?

KING: Yes, I looked a few minutes ago and there were a couple in the northwest part of the state. Two counties, relatively small population wise, Sussex County there. Senator Sanders won quite impressively, you see it combined, fewer than 10,000 votes there. And here again, you move down to Warren County, 51, 49, Senator Sanders winning those.

But then you come, the rest of the state, not only did she win, we go into Newark, this is Essex county, 73 percent of the vote. Here you're into the New York suburbs, essentially, Hudson County, 66 percent of the vote. Bergen county, 63 percent of the vote, Passaic County, 67 percent of the vote. Senator Sanders made a choice. I think Rob Brownstein was talking about it earlier, they made a choice. California was so important because of the number of delegates. This is the second biggest prize tonight, but it's such a disparity, 100+ here, 400+ pledged delegates in California. The Sander's campaign made a choice to go out there thinking the state was more open to them, number one, and that they would have to put a lot of effort in, but they paid a huge prize here. But she won this.

BLITZER: She even cancelled events in New Jersey to go out to California to make sure she would be competitive.

KING: She did. Because they understood what Sanders is doing and they also felt more comfortable here. Bill Clinton came in and filled in a bit for her here. But look at this, 54 percent last time. 60, almost 63 percent this time. Almost a ten-point difference. This is a very big way to start the night. They thought yesterday, the superdelegates overnight put her over the top. The Clinton campaign thought, yesterday, it would be New Jersey that put her over the top. Again, one, two, maybe three, four, Senator Sanders wins that one. This would be four or five. It looks like she's going to get at the end of the night. We'll see how South Dakota and Montana go. Could end up being a 3-3 split, but even if it's a 3-3 split, if Sanders comes back to Montana and South Dakota and Clinton could win California, they would still be the three biggest prizes, New Jersey, New Mexico and California delegate wise.

BLITZER: And she would wind up with a lot more delegates tonight than he would get.

KING: We don't know how this is going to end, but we can be certain looking at that number now that she will end up with majority of the pledged delegates. Even if Sanders comes back and wins California 51- 49, 52-48. There is zero doubt based on that result that Sanders is not going to have blowout in California. She will have a majority of pledged delegates by the time we're done counting in tonight.

BLITZER: Vote is coming in relatively quickly in California. We'll update our viewers in a moment. We're standing by to hear from Bernie Sanders. His tone tonight may depend on the outcome of the California primary. More votes are coming in right now. Stay with us, we'll be right back.


BLITZER: Welcome back, let get a Key Race Alert right now. California the biggest prides of the night, 23 percent of the vote in California is in, and the Democratic presidential primary. Hillary Clinton still has an impressive lead over Bernie, Sanders, 63.1 percent for Bernie Sanders, 35.7 percent. She's ahead now business 305,000 votes over Bernie Sanders 23 percent of the vote is in. In Montana, 38 percent of the vote is in, it's much closer, look at

how close it is in Montana. Hillary Clinton has a 48.4 percent, Bernie Sanders, 47 percent. She's ahead by only 809 votes in Montana, 21 delegates at stake there.

South Dakota, 99 percent of the vote is in. Almost all of the vote is in. She's ahead by 1100, almost 1200 votes, 51.2 percent, 48.8 percent, we have not yet made a projection in South Dakota. We'll wait for the remaining numbers to come in in South Dakota.

She's ahead in Montana, and she's ahead in California right now. Once again, 23 percent, a quarter of the vote is in in California right now. Hillary Clinton has an impressive lead. We're waiting to hear from Bernie Sanders, we'll get the tone of what he has to say. This is not so far, been a great night for Bernie Sanders. Hillary Clinton declared victory tonight. She is the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee. Let's go over to Jake and Dana, Jake.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: Well, Wolf, we've discuss this side already, but Bernie Sanders was certainly hoping this evening to have a very strong finish in the Washington, D.C. primary is in one week, other than that very small contest, this was the last big night of the campaign. And part of the Bernie Sanders argument to superdelegates is he was hoping that he had passed Hillary Clinton, or at least was close to her when he came to pledged delegates. He disputes the idea that she has three million popular votes ahead of her because that doesn't take into account all the caucus votes that turned out because of the complicated way. We don't have the numbers. So the Sanders campaign has a way of doing percentages and figuring out what they think the popular vote count is. Hillary Clinton is still ahead in that, but it's not as big of a margin, but this is not the night that he was hoping for. He was hoping for a very strong, maybe even forced a victory and so far, he' won the North Dakota caucuses, but he's lost two others and the other three still look up in the air.

DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. And with California in particular, that is, you know, the big blue prize and there's only about a quarter of the vote in. She's doing exceedingly well, we do know a lot of the early voting had been Hillary Clinton campaign's goal, I mean, they worked very hard on that, but still, as we were talking about before, before coming on air, that's pretty incredible.

TAPPER: Some of the polls had Bernie Sanders ahead of Hillary Clinton.

BASH: And he spent so much time and energy there.

TAPPER: And $2 million.

BASH: And that. Exactly. And I have to say, you know, I'm sure out heard this as well, from Clinton sources, part of their big concern last night when the Associated Press and then us and other news organizations said that based on not just pledged delegates, but conversations with superdelegates, she had enough to put her over the top and become the presumptive nominee, they were worried their people were going to stay home.

TAPPER: Right, and in fact, as some people have reported, Including John King. They were going to tell superdelegates who were starting to announce and tell reporters that the actually were not undecided. They were with Hillary Clinton. They were trying to tell them don't do that, you're going to suppress the vote, people won't turn out if they think this thing is over. And they were against that, they wanted their vote count to be as high as possible.

Right now, although as we note, it's only a quarter of the vote in. Still that is a significant lead for Hillary Clinton. And if it continues, if, if, if, it continues like this, that really undercuts his argument, Sanders argument. However much he really was planning on spending in the next six week trying to convince superdelegates who have endorsed Hillary Clinton to him.

And ending like this to the campaign, to a very, very competitive campaign. A very impressive race that Bernie Sanders and his team put together. Their campaign has been truly, truly astounding when you think about who he is. Where he came from and what he calls -- and I don't think unfairly so, the coronation that has gone on by the Democratic Party. Whether you take issue with the debate schedule or different decisions the Democrats, official Democrats have made that lean on the scales a little bit for Hillary Clinton. When you take issue with any number of things. The idea that he has come so far in his and has come so close is truly remarkable. At the end of the day, this doesn't look like the end that he needs?

BASH: No, and it is going to be fascinating to see and hear the tone that he takes in his speech and little more than an hour we expect. To see how he embraces the movement that he spearheaded. And kind of whether or not he begins to try to hand it over to Hillary Clinton or says hold on a second. Because I was getting e-mails from people in the Bernie Sanders campaign earlier in the night, before we started seeing the results from California, of course. Saying whoa, whoa, whoa, it might not be possible to call California tonight because there might be same day voting may not be able to be counted today, and so on and so forth.

TAPPER: There might be a typhoon.

BASH: And the fact of the matter is that there might be a typhoon. And we talked about earlier voting. Apparently, most of what came in on their early side are absentee early voting.

TAPPER: Right. And we'll see what happens. One of the things that was interesting is eight years ago when Hillary Clinton was in the same place that Bernie Sanders is in, until it was all over, she was still making the same argument about superdelegates. And hoping that they would switch their vote, that Bernie Sanders is now making. We'll see what he says tonight, tomorrow going forward.

Stay with us for more results, we're still waiting for more numbers out of California. We're also, of course, waiting to hear from Senator Bernie Sanders himself. What's he going to say? Will he acknowledge Hillary Clinton is the Democrat's presumptive nominee? Will he deny that? More coverage on this history many of making primary season. Stay with us.


BLITZER: We have a projection right now. Hillary Clinton is the winner in South Dakota. Hillary Clinton wins the South Dakota Democratic presidential primary. This is her third win of the night. Three important wins for Hillary Clinton so far New Jersey, New Mexico, now South Dakota. New Jersey, New Mexico, South Dakota, Hillary wins those states.

Bernie Sanders has won the caucuses in North Dakota, one win for him. Two other states still outstanding, let's update you right now on California. That's the biggest prize of the night. This is a key race alert. In California, 28 percent of the vote is in. Her lead seems to be growing a little bit, 62.3 percent over Bernie Sanders, 36.5 percent. She's now winning by 342,000 votes over Bernie Sanders with 28 percent of the vote in in California.

In Montana, getting closer to half the vote in, 43 percent, very close in Montana. Hillary Clinton 48.5 percent. She's ahead over Bernie Sanders, 46.6 percent. It's close in Montana. We'll see what happens in Montana. Let's take a closer look at California right now. I'll walk over here to John King over at the magic wall. This is very, very impressive for Hillary Clinton. So far, if you take a look at this, 62.3 percent to 36.5 percent with 28 percent of the vote in. That's already a big number.

KING: It's a huge number. An it's you start thinking can you make up that deficit even in a big state like California, the answer is yes, yes, it's mathematically possible. But when you look at what's come in so far, this is a steep hill for Bernie Sanders. Remember he spent the last two weeks out here, essentially saying this is it. This is what I'm going to fight for in the last big primary night. This is the trophy. I want it to say I have momentum at the end. And if you look right now those numbers speak for, themselves, Wolf.

And then do this, the anchor of the state for the Democrats, Los Angeles county, 26 plus percent of the population. This is where Hillary Clinton, African-Americans, Latinos, this is where if you go back to 2008, she ran up 55 percent of the vote here against then Senator Obama. This is what she hopes to be the anchor over California strategy tonight, 0 percent. Even though a lot of that early vote, that's early vote, they had an aggressive early vote campaign, absentee ballot campaign in the Clinton campaign. So let's not jump to conclusions. We still have nothing from Los Angeles County, a place where she expects to win a pretty healthy margin. This is an early count.

BLITZER: She's ahead by 75,000 votes.

KING: Right, with nothing in yet. We're going to get a lot more votes out here, and if she stays anywhere close that toe that, then Senator Sanders will have a very difficult time overcoming that. Which is a big early lead. Look around and try to find out the places. Let's just go up to the Sacramento here. Sacramento county, again, we're at 0 percent, let's see what happens. This is worth watching. If you go back to 2008, this is an area

Senator Obama won. So if Hillary Clinton is hold on to this, while holding onto the place that she won in 2008. That just tells you everything you need to know. Senator Sanders is not making the inroads he needed. So let's watch, if this stays dark blue as more today votes come in, will no Hillary Clinton is on the mark.

Let's move down here to San Jose, this is Santa Clara County, again, still zero. Which means they've counted some mail-in votes, but we don't have a big of today's vote in yet, let's just switch over and see. She won this with 54 percent eight years ago, she's at 65 percent in the early vote now. If you're in the war room and you're gaming this out, and if you're on the ground in California you know more about today's vote and what the turnout is. But if you're in the Clinton campaign right now, let's just pop down to San Diego County and take a peek again. Twelve percent of the vote in there. She's at 63 percent, she just got 50 percent eight years ago. So if you're looking at the me tricks of how you did last time and trying to improve this time. If you're sitting in the Clinton war room tonight, you're feeling very, very confident. You're up to 30 percent now.

You want to move that number up a little bit, because it is such a big state. If a giant dump of votes come in today, it's possible the math changes. But if you're in the Clinton campaign headquarters, you're looking at that. You were confident to begin the night, you're getting more and more confident, then step out this to this map. This is still an open question. But one, two, three, possibly four, five. North Dakota goes to senator Sanders. I think Montana is very, very close and we're only at 44 percent. But this one could swing, but if you're in the Clinton campaign, you're thinking, four out of six, looking pretty good. Maybe five out of six. That is a giant exclamation point. The District of Columbia will officially close it next week, but in the last big night and a night where Senator Sanders need to send, I have momentum at the end to try to get superdelegates to open their mind. If you're superdelegates and you're for secretary Clinton, you're staying put.

BLITZER: And next Tuesday, the District of Columbia is 20 delegates at stake. That's the final contest of this season. Let's get back over to Jake and Dana. Jake, I understand the president of the United States has weighed in on what's going on right now?

TAPPER: Well, we're anticipating something along those lines, wolf, let's go to the White House right now where Michelle Kosinski is standing by, Michelle what can you tell us?

MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Jake, we just got this statement in right now.