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CNN TONIGHT

Obama And Bush 43 Mourn Loss Of Five Dallas Police Officers; Clinton Receives Endorsement From Bernie Sanders; Trump Getting Closer To Naming Running Mate; Aired 10:12-11p ET

Aired July 12, 2016 - 22:12   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[22:12:09] DON LEMON, CNN HOST: All right, Jake, thank you very much.

This is CNN Tonight. I'm Don Lemon.

Our town hall with House Speaker Paul Ryan, coming after a rare moment of political unity. President Barack Obama and President George W. Bush mourning five Dallas police officers gunned down in the line of duty.

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton gets the endorsement she has been waiting for from Bernie Sanders. And Donald Trump gets closer to naming his running mate.

There's lots going on tonight. And my political dream team fortunately for me and for you, the team is here to discuss all of this. They are Dana Bash, Mark Preston, and Gloria Borger.

Thank you so much for joining us. Gloria, I'm going to start with you. We listened to an hour a little bit over an hour of the House Speaker and in this town hall tonight. Many just came over and clearly concerned about how conservative Donald Trump really is. What stood out to you?

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, what stood out to me is that Paul Ryan clearly made the case that he is a little suspicious of Donald Trump's conservatism. He said that he wants consistency and what he called consistent conservatism.

He made the case for having a conservative running mate. He came right out and said I want a conservative. And when he was asked by the member of the audience, you know, how can you support this person who may not agree with you on all the issues? He said basically compared to what?

LEMON: Right.

BORGER: That it's a binary choice

LEMON: Binary choice, yes.

BORGER: And it's either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. He still can't get his arms around Donald Trump in no way.

LEMON: He's kind of twisting himself in order to do that. Well, I don't agree with him on everything.

BORGER: He totally -- he totally is. But he's the leader of the party and he, you know, he made the case, this is the choice and the Supreme Court is really important.

LEMON: And as you said the vice presidential choice is going to be very important.

BORGER: Yes.

LEMON: Dana Bash, that's one I want to ask you about. Because Donald Trump appeared tonight with Governor Mike Pence. We expect to learn, you know, who Trump is going to pick as V.P. at any time. So, what are you hearing?

DANA BASH, CNN'S CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I'll tell you what I saw here in this arena, which was filled with people who were quite happy, at least the people here to see Mike Pence, their governor, give a pretty rousing introduction to Donald Trump and hitting all the notes that he knew that he needed to hit if he really wants to be Donald Trump's vice president.

Starting off talking about how great Donald Trump is, and why he would be a good president. But also playing that classic attack dog role really going after Hillary Clinton.

But when it comes to Donald Trump, it was really kind of interesting, maybe classic Trump that towards the end of a very long speech that Trump gave here, he started talking about Mike Pence. Just listen to what he said and we can talk about it afterwards.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, (R) U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I often joke you'll be calling up Mike Pence, I don't know whether he's going to your governor or your vice president, who the hell knows.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BASH: So, you know, definitely trying to build the suspense, keep the confusion going, which is actually not unique to Donald Trump.

[22:15:01] He may be an unconventional candidate. But at this time, you know, just days before, maybe hours before a candidate picks a running mate, they like to kind of scramble thing for the press, and keep the guessing game going and the buzz going.

LEMON: To Mr. Preston now, this is such a strange political year. What do you think is driving this V.P. choice for Trump?

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: Well, you know, all along we've tried to figure out what is Donald Trump really looking for in a running mate? Is he looking for somebody who understands Washington? Is he looking for a fighter? Is he looking for a loyalty? Is he looking for somebody with foreign policy experience?

And he's kind of touched upon all of those, certainly when we look at the remaining candidates supposedly that are under consideration.

In the end, though, I do think if we are to believe where things are moving is that he is listening to critics within the Republican Party and advisers in the Republican Party saying go after a conservative someone to shore up the base.

Because the bottom line is, Don, there is no way Donald Trump is going to win the presidency without having a strong base that he can build upon.

Now what we saw from Mike Pence today in Indiana or this evening in Indiana, is somebody who can come out and be the attacker of Hillary Clinton, the attacker of the Democratic Party, and perhaps take a little bit off of Donald Trump's shoulders.

Even though he enjoys it, Don, if you are the presidential nominee, you have other things you need to do. You need to sell your vision and not spend all of your time attacking your opponent. That's what the V.P should be doing.

LEMON: Go ahead, Dana.

BASH: I was just going to say, and, you know, Mike Pence is not a household name. So, to Mark's point, he proves here that he can be an attack dog but he is a conservative, he is an Evangelical. And he is somebody who is maybe not well-known, you know, kind of in the broad public, but among Evangelicals he is. And he is trusted among those in the conservative base.

And that is something that is Mark said, I'm hearing as well, that is important because, you know, there is skittishness. And you even heard House Speaker Paul Ryan talk today about how he knows Mike Pence because Pence also served also in the House of Representatives.

He has that Washington experience and that could help.

LEMON: Hang on, Gloria.

BASH: Now, whether it could help with the independents and moving to the middle and getting people over from the democratic side, that's a different story.

LEMON: Gloria, I do want you to to respond. But before you respond maybe you can answer to this. Is the money on Pence? Is he the odds-on favorite?

BORGER: Yes. I think look, I think he is the safe choice for Donald Trump.

LEMON: OK.

BORGER: I'm not saying that Donald Trump ever does...

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: Does anything safe. BORGER: ... the safe thing. But when you -- but when you hear someone like Paul Ryan say I want a conservative, I never thought Pence was an attack dog, by the way.

LEMON: Yes.

BORGER: But I heard him tonight and I've changed my mind.

LEMON: Wow.

BORGER: Is that OK? He can go on the attack. The only thing I don't know about is the personal chemistry between the two men.

LEMON: Yes.

BORGER: So, that's up to Donald Trump obviously but I would have to say that he is -- that he is the safest choice that would be resoundingly approved by the establishment conservatives that have been repelled by him.

And don't forget, Pence endorsed Ted Cruz and a lot of the anti- Trumpers were Cruz people.

LEMON: Yes.

BORGER: And so, this kind of deflates all of that to a degree, if he were to pick Pence. So, it's all in the mix.

LEMON: Yes.

BORGER: Who knows what Donald Trump does?

LEMON: He's the most steady choice. He's the safe -- I think probably the most safe and relevant. But I have to ask you, there's a new Pew poll out and it shows Hillary Clinton beating Donald Trump among registered voters 45 percent to 36 percent with Gary Johnson. He's got 11 percent, Gloria. We're only days from the convention, should Donald Trump be worried about that?

BORGER: It's early. I mean, I don't know what these polls are Hillary Clinton has had a consistent lead by as many points, it kind of varies a few points, you know, either way. Heading into your convention, what you want and you guys know this as well as anybody, what you want is to get a bump out of that convention and you'd like to be ahead going into your convention.

So, it's a little bit more difficult for Donald Trump but, sure, they're worried. They're worried when they see any poll that shows them behind.

LEMON: yes. Hey, Mark, I want to get to this. I want to ask you about Ruth Bader Ginsburg in her comments today raising a lot of eyebrows with their negative comments about Donald Trump.

First she told the New York Times as she couldn't imagine the country led by Trump. And today she said this to CNN, and this is a quote, "He's a faker. He has no consistency about him. He says whatever comes into his head at the moment. He really has an ego. How has he gotten away with not turning over his tax returns? The press seeps to be very gentle with him on that."

I mean, is that the kind of commentary, you know, that kind of commentary in a presidential candidate, is that appropriate? has she gotten too far?

PRESTON: Well, I can tell you certainly in my lifetime, and I guess this is the fifth presidential convention that I've covered. I've never seen anything like this. I've never seen a Supreme Court justice actually weigh in on a presidential race, let alone a candidate.

[22:19:58] But if you have taken a step back and wonder how will this impact the race, this might actually help rally conservatives around Donald Trump who are already concerned that the court is going to shift to the left demonstrably if Hillary Clinton is elected.

So, you could perhaps see those on the right take these comments and really try to rally a base around Donald Trump. They might not like him as a person, but they see him, as we saw Paul Ryan say earlier that it's a binary choice and he is choosing Donald Trump and conservative should as well.

LEMON: Here's what Donald Trump and how he responded to the New York Times, Dana, before you jump in here. Because I think it's...

(CROSSTALK)

BASH: Yes, sure.

LEMON: ... I think it's highly inappropriate that a United States Supreme Court judge gets involved in a political campaign frankly. I think it's a disgrace to the court and I think she should apologize to the court. I couldn't believe it when I saw it. Go ahead, Dana.

BASH: Well, I was just going to say there's a reason why Ruth Bader Ginsburg's supporters, liberal supporters call her the notorious RBG.

LEMON: RBG.

BASH: Because they think that she is, you know, that she's one of their heroes, she's a folk hero. However, like Mark said and maybe more importantly for all of us, what Jeffrey Toobin, who is a student of the court said earlier on CNN, that he's never seen this and it isn't appropriate.

BORGER: Right.

BASH: Politically, Mark I think is absolutely right. There is no quicker way to engage the conservative base behind a candidate who has promised to deliver judges that they like by name than for Ruth Bader Ginsburg to start talking about Donald Trump.

LEMON: Right.

BORGER: Right.

BASH: Especially when this is not a hypothetical. There's an actual vacancy on the court right now.

BORGER: There's a reason she's a judge and not a politician. Because she played right into Donald Trump's hands with this and I'm not quite sure she knew she was doing that.

LEMON: All right. Everybody stay with me. When we come right back, in Dallas today, President Barack Obama said that we're not as divided as we seem. Is America at a turning point?

[22:25:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: President Barack Obama at a memorial service for fallen Dallas police officers today, speaking candidly about race and saying, American sorrow, after a week of violence, can make us a better country.

Now back with me now, Dana Bash, mark Preston, and Gloria Borger.

It was a very moving day and, you know, besides being a tribute to fallen officers in memorial in Dallas today was kind of a national reflection on race. I want to play a clip of the president's speech and then we'll talk about it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA PRESIDENT: I know that Americans are struggling right now with what we've witnessed over the past. First, the shootings in Minnesota in Baton Rouge, the protests and the targeting of police by the shooter here.

And act not just of demented violence but of racial hatred. All of it let us wounded and anger, and hurt. It is the deepest fault lines of our democracy have suddenly been exposed, perhaps even widened.

And although we know that such divisions are not new, though they have surely been worse than even the recent past, that offers us little comfort. I understand how Americans are feeling.

But, Dallas, I'm here to say we must reject such despair. I'm here to insist that we are not as divided as we seem. And I know that because I know America. I know how far we've come against the impossible odds.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Gloria Borger, how many has the president made a speech like this and do you think it was different this time?

BORGER: I could sense his frustration. He doesn't want to give any more of these speeches, Don.

LEMON: Yes.

BORGER: I think he' done it at least 14 times in the aftermath of mass shootings and you could see the depth not only of the frustration but the disappointment and the pain while he was speaking.

You know, he's given a version of this speech too many times. And I think when he leaves office and somebody asks him the question what are the hardest moments for you or the greatest disappointments for you, the toughest time as president of the United States, I think he would have to say that these kinds of speeches and talking to the families of the victims are the hardest thing for a president to do. And you could see it in his speech and you could see it in George W. Bush's speech as well.

LEMON: Right, yes.

BORGER: Both of them sharing this as former president.

LEMON: And this one is -- this one is -- he had to tackle the issue of race, Dana Bash. He was remarkably candid about how complex and difficult the issue of race is. Let's listen to another clip and then we'll discuss.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: We know that the overwhelming majority of police officers do an incredibly hard and dangerous job fairly and professionally. They are deserving of our respect and not our scorn.

(APPLAUSE)

And when anyone, no matter how good their intentions may be, paints all police as biased or bigoted, we undermine those officers we depend on for our safety.

[22:29:59] We also know that centuries of racial discrimination of slavery and subjugation and Jim Crowe.

They didn't simply vanish within of lawful segregation. They didn't just stop when Dr. King made a speech or the Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Act were signed.

Race relations have improved dramatically in my lifetime. Those who deny it are dishonoring the struggles that helped us achieve that progress. But we know...

(APPLAUSE)

But, America, we know that bias remains. We know it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Dana, yes, I mean, he had to walk a tight rope there. How tricky is it in this very highly charged environment, political environment, this climate, to both honor the lives of the police who were murdered while supporting the efforts of those who want reform, you know, and bias in policing and then racism elsewhere?

DANA BASH, CNN'S CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Incredibly, incredibly complex. And look, you know, no matter what you think of Barack Obama politically, I think it's hard to listen to and watch that speech and not understand how he is able to tackle these complex issues and use the words that he used in his book, in his autobiography, you know, all those years ago that put him on the national stage.

The one thing that -- speaking of words, the other thing that I thought was so fascinating about his speech is him admitting, this man who, again, became who he is because of his ability to speak, because of his eloquence, admitting that his words have not been enough.

To me, that was -- that was such a moment for any president, particularly this president given who he is. And just one last thing, Don, the fact that he was talking about how we've come so far and not saying what is the most obvious thing about that statement, which is that he's a black president giving that -- giving those comments.

LEMON: Yes. He said that I've seen the example, part of the examples in my own life but he didn't specifically say that.

BASH: Yes, exactly.

LEMON: Mark, will his message at home or will the messenger get in the way of this in that people will hear what they want to hear in this president's words?

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: You know, I certainly think in the wake of tragedy we all come together for a moment and then that moment passes and we forget about it until the next tragedy.

You know, what's interesting is that we're heading into these two politically charge weeks coming up ahead, where we're going to see democrats attacking republicans and republicans attacking democrats, at a time when a country does need to come together.

Now, there is this big racial divide in the country, there's no doubt about it. But I wouldn't even say it's worst in that, Don, There is an economic divide in this country that goes beyond the color of person's skin where you have white for whites that are feeling disadvantage and angry frustrated as well.

And I would say this for Barack Obama. He is uniquely qualified right now in the six and a half months that he has left in office to create a legacy for himself as well as when he leaves office to try to bring the country together.

He is uniquely positioned given the fact of where he came from, what the history that he made and his ability to bring people together. This could be quite a moment for Barack Obama and honestly probably a moment that this nation needs.

LEMON: All right, Mark. Thank you very much, Mark Preston, Dana Bash, and Gloria Borger. I appreciate that.

Up next, the rare joined appearance. Former President George W. Bush joins President Barack Obama on stage at the Dallas memorial. What he said in his tribute to the fallen officers. [22:35:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: Really it was a rare moment of unity today, something we haven't seen a lot of lately. A sitting president joined at an event by his predecessor. George W. Bush sat on stage and addresses the Dallas memorial service today, alongside President Obama.

Here to discuss that now is Andy Card, who served as President Bush's chief of staff, and Joshua DuBois, who's a former White House religious affairs director for Barack Obama.

I'm so glad to have you all of on -- all on this evening. I thought it was a really special moment that we witnessed, many of us, hopefully most people in the country did live today.

Andy, you know, we heard a lot from President Obama's speech, but former President Bush, George W. Bush made a rare public appearance and his remarks were interesting as well. Let's listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: To renew our unity we only need to remember our values. We have never been held together by blood or background. We are bound by things of the spirit, by shared commitments to common ideals.

At our best we practice empathy, imagining ourselves in the lives and circumstances of others. This is the bridge across our nation's deepest divisions.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Andy, what are your thoughts on President Bush's words today? And why was it so important for him to attend and speak out?

ANDY CARD, FORMER WHITE HOUSE CHEF OF STAFF: Well, first of all, I was really pleased that President Bush and President Obama got together to speak not only to the people of Dallas but to the people of the world. And hopefully the United States will pay particular attention.

I thought President Bush's speech was very efficient speech but it was also extremely inviting for us to step up to the challenge of uniting. And I thought it was right for him to call for us to recognize the common purpose that we have, the shared values that we have and how those can trump all of the divisions in this country.

And we've got to learn to step up the responsibility of those shared values. So I thought it was a powerful and efficient speech that President Bush gave, and I was pleased to see him there with President Obama.

[22:40:00] LEMON: Joshua, you know, I watched today and President Obama said something very specific that really touched me. He said "Let me give you a new heart," citing the bible. You know him very well. Why did he select that passage?

JOSHUA DUBOIS, FORMER WHITE HOUSE RELIGIOUS AFFAIRS DIRECTOR: He selected that passage from Ezekiel because I think he was saying we need and empathy revolution in this country. We've got to figure out how to look at someone else who's not like us and see the image of God and see ourselves.

We've got to figure out how a white police officer can look at a young black man and not grow anxious, but instead see someone who could be his son or his brother. We got to figure out how black folks can look at a white police officers and see the same thing.

But that doesn't paper over our divisions or the very real policy issues that out there. But the president is saying OK. We have to allow our hearts to break for one another and to replace these hearts of stone with tender hearts, with hearts of flesh in the words of Ezekiel that he quoted today.

And I thought that was an extraordinarily powerful moment, along with President Bush's speech as well which I thought was amazing. He also talked about seeing the image of God in each other. And so they seemed to really be on the same page today.

LEMON: There is a sense among many Americans that we are really at a tipping point right now. And the president spoke about that. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: The deepest fault lines of our democracy have suddenly been exposed, perhaps even widened. And although we know that such divisions are not new, though they've surely been worse and even the recent past, that offers us little comfort.

Faced with this violence we wonder if the divides of race in America can ever be bridged.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: I want to ask both of you. If you took the partisan political posturing out of this and say President Barack Obama and former President Bush could get together in a room and hash things out, hash out ideas, what do you think they could agree on? First to you, Andy.

CARD: Well, first of all, I do think that President Bush and President Obama know how have it now -- know how to have a constructive dialogue. And I do believe that they could help to bring people together.

I witnessed President Bush do that when he was President of the United States. He built remarkable unity efforts to challenge terrorism, for example. He brought comfort to a lot of people.

But I would like to see the dialogue and all of politics today start to recognize the responsibility that we have to define a future rather than just complain about the present. We have to acknowledge the challenges of today but we've got to recognize the common values that are out there that we're all working for, that we hold dear and we want to lift up.

And I think President Bush and President Obama could help to guide to us having a more constructive way to discuss some of these things in a political climate that will produce results rather than just debate.

LEMON: Joshua, I think do you believe that the president was passing the baton on to us. So, what do you think that they could agree upon if they were in the room together?

DUBOIS: Absolutely. Well, first, I think he was sort of redrawing the lines of our democracy, he was saying that although the black/white divide is at really important divide to look at, there's even -- there's an equally important divide and that's between those who would perfect our union and those who would seek to divide our union further and tear it down.

On the side that the perfecting side, today, he very forcefully placed protesters in that camp because he sees them as seeking to refine our democracy and get us to a better place. But he also put the Dallas Police Department in that camp as protecting the space for the democratic protest.

But on the other side, there are those who would either do violence to one another or divide us further. And so, that's really that the camps he's drawing here. Which side are we going to be on, are we going to work in our own ways every day to perfect our union or are we going to tear us down further?

In terms of practical things that I think they could agree on, I think first and foremost, they would agree that we have to have to have better human relationships between police officers and departments around the country and the communities in which they serve.

These sides we've got to know each other a little bit better than they presently do. And we got to create incentives for that. And I think that that's a practical thing that what President Obama and President Bush and others the country can work on and we should help them in that process.

LEMON: Andy, did you want to respond, real quick, do you want to respond to that?

CARD: Well, I think that we also have to respect authority and authority has to earn that respect. So, the police do a fabulous job, 99.9 percent of the police officers in this country do a remarkable job. And President Bush cited that, so did President Obama.

And we have to respect the burden that these police officers carry. They have to be -- they have to have the ability to address us and save us all the time. And sometimes they have to address us in tough ways and sometimes they have to save us from very difficult circumstances.

[22:45:01] And we know that they're carrying burdens. And I thought that both President Obama and President Bush also cited the value of the police forces that are out there helping to be peace officers in this great land, and also to keep us as a law abiding, respectful community.

(CROSSTALK)

DUBOIS: Andy, I think that...

LEMON: That has to be the last word. Joshua, I'm sorry. I'm just out of time. I appreciate it.

DUBOIS: No problem.

LEMON: Thank you, Joshua DuBois. Thank you, Andy Card.

Coming up, President Barack Obama calling for consensus and fighting cynicism. Is this a chance for republicans and democrats to come together?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: President Barack Obama calling for unity and action in today's memorial in Dallas.

And here to discuss is Matt Lewis, senior contributor to The Daily Caller, Hilary Rosen, CNN senior political contributor and a Hillary Clinton supporter, and also with me former Donald Trump campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, who is still receiving severance from the Trump campaign. He will give the chair of the New Hampshire delegation at the republican convention and he is a CNN political commentator. I think that is the longest introduction for someone who does not have a book.

(CROSSTALK)

HILARY ROSEN, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Very, very...

LEMON: But listen, in the interest of all of you and in the interest of honoring the five officers who died and what the president, the current president and the former president said, let's try to get through this without name calling, invoking the other candidate and talk about solutions and common ground.

[22:50:12] Just to honor those people today. So, Hilary, I'm going to start with you. President Obama, a day of healing he called for and spoke about the need to act. So, here's more of his speech and then we'll discuss.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: As a society we choose to underinvest in decent schools. We allow poverty to fester so that entire neighborhoods offer no prospect for gainful employment.

(APPLAUSE)

We refuse to fund drug treatment and mental health programs.

(APPLAUSE) We flood communities with so many guns that it is easier for a teen- ager to buy a Glock...

(APPLAUSE)

... than get his hand on a computer or even a book.

In the end it's not about finding policies that work. It's about forging consensus and fighting cynicism and finding the will to make change.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Hilary, that is a list of democratic policy proposals. How likely is it that if Hillary Clinton is selected that she will have any luck forging consensus and fighting cynicism with a republican Congress.

ROSEN: Well, we've seen this Congress getting ready to go on vacation this week for the next two months without acting on, you know, the simplest background checks for purchasing guns.

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: But, Hilary, what I said earlier, how is she -- how is going to go about it.

ROSEN: I'm getting there, Don.

LEMON: I know, but...

ROSEN: I think the reality is that if there is a democratic Senate, I think there is a much greater incentive for the House and the Senate to compromise on legislation of mutual interest.

I think we saw something President Obama -- in both President Obama and George Bush today, which is the frustration of a president who believes that they see what needs to be done, who believes they see a path for bringing people together.

And then expressing the frustration about how hard it is to move political cycles to actually implement change. And I think you sort of saw that wistfulness in George Bush and in President Obama today.

So, I think that, you know, a lot of the power of their words is that one person alone cannot do this, that, in fact, that bully pulpit, that encouraging people to believe, to end the cynicism as President Obama said, is as important a role for the president as anything.

LEMON: All right. Corey, to you now, Which of these policies, and the policies he's mentioned are investing in schools, fighting inner city poverty, funding drug and mental health programs, keeping guns out of neighborhoods and getting kids to computers or books instead, just which one of these does Donald Trump support? Which one can he get or ones that he can get on board with? COREY LEWANDOWSKI, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think he supports all

of them. I think what you have is you've got a country that's hurting right now. And I don't think anybody wants to make any light of that. And the difference is you have an opportunity to have a leader who wants to try and get something done and what that really is getting done is making sure our kids are safe, and making sure our police are safe, making sure our communities are safe.

I don't think there's any discouragement or any disagreement between that. The question is what is the highest priority? The highest priority has to be our children I think. And I think making sure that they have good schools and they go safely and that the neighborhoods are safe. But that's not to say that we can't have law and order.

Because law and order has to have a place in our society. And what Donald Trump has said is he's going to be the law and order candidate. And what that means is when you're a police officer and you swear that you're going to uphold the laws and you're going to do your best to make your community safe, you shouldn't be targeted by a person who wants to kill people based on your race or because of your occupation.

That's not what our country's about. So, let's do everything we can to make all of our community safe and that helps everybody.

LEMON: Now on the other side when you said targeting people because of their race, black and brown people feel that police officers are doing the same way in many instances. Do you think Donald Trump understands that part of that?

LEWANDOWSKI: You know, even when I think, I think no matter what job you have there are some bad apples. And I think 99.9 percent of the police officers...

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: Does he understand that part? And we get that most police officers are good. We don't have to say that.

LEWANDOWSKI: We do like.

LEMON: Most police officers do the right thing. But does Donald Trump understand that there are police officers who do discriminate against people of color?

LEWANDOWSKI: Look, what I think you have is and there was a study that was out that said unfortunately, African-American police officers are more likely to be involved in an incident of shooting another individual.

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: You're not answering my question.

LEWANDOWSKI: Look, I don't -- I can't tell you what Donald Trump thinks because I don't know what he thinks but here's what I do think.

LEMON: But you're a supporter of Donald Trump.

(CROSSTALK)

LEWANDOWSKI: The mentality of the campaign -- the mentality of the campaign -- let me...

LEMON: You're a supporter of Donald Trump and I want to -- don't give me talking points. I said that. Hang on, Corey, hang on. Hang on. I said that at the beginning of this. I don't want talking points. Do you think that Donald Trump understands that there are people who are discriminated against and are treated unfairly by police in this country?

[22:55:04] LEWANDOWSKI: What I think is that anybody who is treated unfairly based on their religion, based on their creed, their ethnicity is wrong. I think Donald Trump agrees with that. And our goal here is to treat everyone the same.

LEMON: But you still didn't answer the question.

LEWANDOWSKI: Look, I can't tell you what he thinks because only he could ...

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: But you tell me what he does, you tell me what he thinks about other things, you tell me what policies he has on other things but on this particular issue you can't tell me what he thinks?

LEWANDOWSKI: What I can tell you is he thinks everything...

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: How do you -- what do you think he thinks then.

LEWANDOWSKI: I think he thinks eventually everyone to treat the same. And if there is discrimination based on someone's raising to Trump...

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: So, you don't think he thinks that people are discriminated against. Because I thought it was a very interesting issue tonight because I kept asking the House Speaker.

Matt, I ask you this, I kept asking the House Speaker -- the House Speaker kept saying I think that we have certain people in this country who feel that they are being discriminated against by police officers, rather than there are a certain group of people in this country who are being discriminated against by police officers.

That's two different things. And no one asked him that question tonight. He didn't really talk about that. He said people who feel that way as if it doesn't exist.

MATT LEWIS, CNN COMMENTATOR: You're right, Don. I heard that, too. I thought it was a mistake. I mean, it's like -- it's like when you're apologizing to somebody and you're like if I made you feel bad, you know, as opposed to saying that I did something wrong. Maybe it's just a verbal tick. I'm going to give Paul Ryan the benefit of the doubt.

LEMON: He said it three times.

LEWIS: Yes. He did.

ROSEN: Right.

LEWIS: I think it was a -- I think it was a mistake to say that. I don't know though, I don't know if we should read into that that he, that this suggests that he believes everything's hunky-dory, that there's not a real problem or if he's just suggesting that people that perception is that there's a problem.

But, you're right. And that was a -- I picked up on that, too. And that he needs to correct that and I don't know if it's in his heart or if it's just a verbal tick.

LEMON: Yes. Thank you.

ROSEN: Look, Don, here...

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: I got to go, Hilary. I'm sorry I'm out of time. I appreciate all of you. Thank you very much for coming on.

When we come right back, new threats against police in Baton Rouge, just a week after a fatal shooting of Alton Sterling. We'll have the latest on that. We'll be right back.

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