Return to Transcripts main page
Trump Spells Out Major Shift on Immigration; Trump Calls Clinton "Bigot"; Clinton Fires Back at Trump. Aired 11p-12a ET
Aired August 24, 2016 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[23:00:14] ANNOUNCER: This is CNN "Breaking News."
DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Breaking news, a major shift from Donald Trump on immigration. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton blasts him in an exclusive interview with CNN.
This is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Don Lemon.
Trump in an interview saying there would be no amnesty but promising to, quote, "Work with undocumented immigrants." And in a blistering speech in Mississippi, he calls Hillary Clinton a bigot.
She fires back accusing Trump of peddling bigotry, prejudice and paranoia in an exclusive interview with our very own Anderson Cooper.
I want to bring in now "CNN Politics" editor Mr. Mark Preston, executive editor, and our chief political correspondent Ms. Dana Bash.
So let's start with the word "bigot" on the campaign trail tonight. Here's Donald Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Hillary Clinton is a bigot, who sees people of color only as votes, not as human beings worthy of a better future. She's going to do nothing for African-Americans. She's going to do nothing for the Hispanics. She doesn't care what her policies have done to your communities.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: And here is Hillary Clinton talking to Anderson Cooper tonight.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, U.S. DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE (via telephone): Donald Trump has shown us who he is, and we ought to believe him. He is taking a hate movement mainstream. He's brought it into his campaign. He's bringing it to our communities and our country.
And, you know, someone who has questioned the citizenship of the first African-American president, who has courted white supremacists, who has been sued for housing discrimination against communities of color, who has attacked a judge for his Mexican heritage and promise a mass deportation force is someone who is, you know, very much peddling bigotry and prejudice and paranoia.
LEMON: Dana bash, to you first, what do you think?
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, listening to Hillary Clinton again, obviously, I listened to it live, it's sort of crystallizing in my mind what's going on here.
She's previewing a big speech that she's going to give tomorrow, which the campaign, the Clinton campaign is calling the alt-right speech where, you know, she's going to talk about Steve Bannon, the new chairman of Donald Trump's campaign, who runs or ran Breitbart media and, look, talking about all of the things that she is going to point to, that he has said and done that put him in, from her perspective, in the hate group camp. And, obviously, take that a step further and say that just proves that that's who Donald Trump is going to be.
So that's what that is. But then knowing the way Donald Trump, you know, it's been advertised that Clinton is going to give that kind of speech. And knowing the way Donald Trump is and takes things like that personally, there's no question in my mind that's why he called her, or one of the reasons he called her a bigot tonight, as almost a pre-emptive strike against what she's going to say tomorrow.
Mark Preston, your thoughts?
MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: Yes, it's a bridge too far. Because if Donald Trump wanted to go out there and be critical of Hillary Clinton or the Democratic Party saying that their policies have failed the inner cities and the African-American communities, you know, perhaps you can make that arguments, or perhaps he could release -- add some crude to the argument.
What happens, though, when you go too far and use inflammatory language like that, everything you've said before that is forgotten and we all focus on the one word, "bigot."
And I don't think there's anybody in this country, perhaps Donald Trump and some of his supporters who think that Hillary Clinton is a bigot. And I think that sometimes a little less said is a little more effective.
LEMON: Let's turn now and let's talk about immigration.
Because, Dana, Trump, tonight, a major change in his stance on immigration. Let listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEAN HANNITY, FOX HOST: No citizenship?
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: No citizenship. HANNITY: OK. Everyone, agree with that?
TRUMP: All right. Let me go step further. They'll pay back taxes. They have to pay taxes. There's no amnesty as such. There's no amnesty.
TRUMP: But we work with them. Now, OK, but when I look at the rooms and have I this all over -- now everybody agrees we get the bad ones out. But when I go through and I meet thousands and thousands of people on the subject and I've had very strong people come up to me, really great, great people come up to me, and they've said, Mr. Trump, I love you, but to take a person that's been here for 15 or 20 years and throw them and the family out, it's so tough, Mr. Trump.
I mean, I have it all the time. It's a very, very hard thing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: So that's not scripted. He's feeding off the crowd there.
[23:05:00] BASH: He is. And, you know, just -- also, just the way that he and his campaign orchestrated this. That he went on Hannity; he went on "Fox," a very, very safe place in front of a crowd, as you said, with he was feeding off of, not heckling him for moving to the center. Maybe it looks like just the opposite.
But to hear Donald Trump say that he understands how tough it would be for all of these families who have been here for so many years to leave is what we heard people like Jeb Bush and John Kasich, other Republicans who got ridiculed for saying that in the primaries say.
But more importantly is so different from what he said to you, to me, to so many people who interviewed him throughout the entire primary season, when he was very specific. It was one of the core parts of his campaign. Everybody has to leave. The good ones, he would say; the bad ones and then let the good ones back in. That's not what he said there.
LEMON: Speaking as such, here he is in a campaign trail and in interviews.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: We're going to keep the families together. We have to keep the families together.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But you're going to --
TRUMP: But they have to go.
You're going to have a deportation force and you're going to do it humanely. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're rounding them all up.
TRUMP: We're round them up in a very humane way. In a very nice way. And they're going to be happy because they want to be legalized.
And I'm sure these are very, very fine people. They're going to go and we're going to create a path where we can get them into this country legally.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: OK. So, Mark, many people have said that what he was proposing was never going to work: a deportation force, building a wall across the Mexican. You can't physically do that, build a wall across the entire border.
And now this is changing, but many people have wanted him to change or soften as they say, his stance, months and months ago. And now he's doing it for the people who may be attracted to this, is it too late?
PRESTON: Well, a couple of things. One, we could call it a pivot; two, we could call it softening; three, we could say it's a flip-flop. We would be right on all of them, right? I mean, they are. And we can continue on.
The folks who are with Donald Trump right now is perhaps something -- they may abandon him, but they have nowhere to go, Don. Who are they going to go support. They're not going to support Gary Johnson. They'll surely not going to support Hillary Clinton and quite frankly, Donald Trump still says enough --
LEMON: Does it make them less enthusiastic to go to the polls?
PRESTON: I don't think so. I think that Donald Trump -- those who are die hard, those who got on the, quote, unquote, "Trump train," you know, from the beginning and think that he's going to make America great again are going to stay with him. But what it does do is that it opens up the door to those moderate, those centrist Republicans, those who have been sitting on the sidelines, those who think that Donald Trump has been too harsh, his rhetoric has too sharp as well as those independent voters in these swing states.
And, you know, while we use the word pivot, flip-flop, what have you; their word would be is, "welcome." Thank God that Donald Trump is finally saying it now. The question is, to your point, why wasn't this done six months ago?
BASH: Mark, I think that you're probably right that the people who have been his core supporters don't have anywhere else to go and they're going to still back him. But this is really the biggest test to that now famous comment that he made. That he could go on Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and this people would still back him.
BASH: Because this is the heart and soul of his primary campaign. I mean, the wall. But then the other part of him, his immigration plan, was get them all out. I mean, that was it.
BASH: That's who Donald Trump was to those Republican voters across the country who, you know, he reminds us, who went out by the millions to support him. So this will be a real test.
LEMON: Those people who were at the rally saying "Build that wall. Build that wall." And still continue to say that. But to Mark's point, where else do you go? They are certainly not going to vote for Hillary Clinton.
And speaking of Hillary Clinton, here's what she said to Anderson about this tonight. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON (via telephone): My understanding is that the comment you just referred to was the third different position he took yesterday on immigration.
Somebody has told him, I guess the latest people that he's consulting, how damaging his statements have been; how terrible his deportation plan is; how offensive his views on immigrants have been from the very first day of his campaign. So he's trying to do, all in kind of a shuffle here.
But I think we need to look at the entire context. We need to believe him when he bullies and threatens to throw out every immigrant in the country. And certainly changes his position three times in one day. It sends a message that it's just a desperate effort to try to land somewhere that isn't as, you know, devastating to his campaign as his comments and his positions have been up until now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Mark, are you saying it doesn't matter so much that he's giving his opponent fodder here?
PRESTON: I don't think so. Not on this issue.
I mean, look, he is flip-flopping. He can be accused of that. He can be accused of that on many issues that we've seen so far. But I do think that, look, his plan to deport 11 million people was economically not feasible, logistically impossible and politically stupid, right? It was those three things. It was never going to happen.
For Donald Trump, though -- you know, mark my words on this one. I bet you tomorrow or in the coming days, he will go back to saying, we're going to get the bad ones out. We're going to get the bad ones out and he's going to be loud about it. And he's going to be very critical of the policies up to this point. But he's going to say, we'll get the bad ones out and we'll keep the good ones here. And in the end, that's going to play game.
[23:15:31] LEMON: Does this win him any Hispanic voters, Dana?
BASH: You know, it's hard to see the answer being, yes, but we'll see where he goes with this. We'll see how his policy -- what his policy looks like. We understand he's going to finally give that speech on Wednesday in Arizona. A state where we showed in our battleground state poll today that he is beating Hillary Clinton. He should be, historically, because it is a red state.
But one thing I just want to say about this to your question, Don, about whether or not he's giving his opponent fodder.
I agree with mark. I don't think that's the issue here.
But what is a little bit perplexing is why they cancelled or postponed the speech that they were going to give tomorrow about immigration. The policy wasn't ready, fine. That's completely understandable.
But the other plus side of that was that they could kind of lay back and let Hillary Clinton stew on all of these stories about the Clinton Foundation and so forth Instead it's kind of a drip, drip, drip. And it gives Hillary Clinton the ability to say, wait a minute, is this immigration proposal today, the same as it was yesterday. So it's murky for people who are trying to figure out what he stands for. And it's going to last more than a week.
LEMON: Is he stepping on, Mark -- again, as you know, as this been said so many times, stepping on the news cycle that was just sort of laid out for him because Hillary Clinton had the e-mail, she had the scandal, and now you know, everyone is talking about bigot and he's flip-flopping on immigration.
Should he have just held off on this entirely and just to ridden the news cycle like a wave, like a surf.
PRESTON: Three words for you, Don. Yes, yes, and yes. I can't believe it.
Dana is absolutely right. I can't believe it.
BASH: You can't believe that I'm absolutely right?
PRESTON: Mark, this time, it's the first time Dana Bash has been right.
No, bottom line is, he has stepped on his message. He has ramped up into Hillary Clinton's speech tomorrow. The pivot from the media now is going to be to cover the e-mails. To cover the ongoing questions about the foundation. But also now their time is going to be divided. Donald Trump calling her a bigot, which again is a bridge too far. And Hillary Clinton going back at him and probably saying the exact same thing, probably shaper tones than what we heard her say tonight. The Trump campaign, Don, very smart. They're going to cancel the immigration. At the mid of the week, they cancel the immigration speech, allow this Clinton Foundation stuff to fester. He stepped on his message tonight.
LEMON: Thank you.
Very first time Dana Bash has been right. We'll have to mark this.
BASH: Will you stop repeating that, please?
PRESTON: Don't do anything to me when you come back to Washington, please.
LEMON: All right. Thank you. I appreciate it.
When we come right back, Donald Trump promises voters a hard line on immigration. Isn't that what won him the nomination? So now what?
Are you trying to get into the camera, again?
BASH: Photo bomb.
[23:16:48] LEMON: Our breaking news tonight, Donald Trump spelling out a major shift in his immigration plan.
Here to discuss now, CNN political commentators Kayleigh McEnany and Andrei Bauer, both Trump supporters and Maria Cardona and Bakari Sellers, Hillary Clinton supporters.
So now, I mean, can we just not say it's softening anymore?
MARIA CARDONA, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: He said that. Trump said it's softening.
LEMON: OK. All right.
So Andre, what do you think about it? There's no deportation forces. A major departure from the way he started his campaign. What's your reaction to it?
ANDRE BAUER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think he's evolving. I think he's softening. I think the people around him are softening. I think on the campaign trail, he's even hearing it.
And I think he looks at it from a realistic standpoint. And some of the things that he originally thought about doing aren't plausible, but you take the most important nuggets and then you move forward with that. You know, look, most of the people watching the show, they want to know how their lives are going to get better. I know we get bogged down in the fight between these two candidates, but at some point in time, they want to know the real things that are going to affect their lives. And so, I hope at some point, we'll pivot back to that and it's not about somebody calls somebody a bigot, but we'll get who can create jobs; what the taxes are going to look like, you know, what are we really going to be --
LEMON: I agree with you, but I think immigration is a very important topic and especially when you frame it in the sense that it is taking jobs away from, quote unquote, "real Americans," or people who are here legally.
BAUER: No question.
LEMON: So I think that's a big issue.
How is this not amnesty, though, considering what he's been saying for the last 14 months on this? How is this not amnesty?
KAYLEIGH MCENANY, CNN REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Well, he's by no means proposing a path to citizenship. He's not been out there saying that. What he had said --
LEMON: He said we're going to work with them. They have to pay taxes. That's what citizens do.
MCENANY: What he has been saying, and I think that this is really important to point out, he is building a wall. Mexico is paying for it. This is a stark contrast to Hillary Clinton, open border amnesty.
It's in stark contrast to Barack Obama who last year alone let out 19,700 illegal immigrants with criminal convictions into society, 200 of which were murder convictions.
So Donald Trump wants to deport those folks. He listened to voters. Voters have said to him we don't like the part about breaking up families. We want, you know, those people to be able to stay. And he moved on it. He is softening his world and I like that. I like being responsive to the people, to your voters.
LEMON: He even used, Kayleigh, Operation Wetback, which is an example of a term, you know, that he said he wanted to replicate it. It was -- many saw the term and the policy as racist.
So this new language, though, that's not the definition of a flip- flop?
MCENANY: No, I think a flip-flop is when you fundamentally change a deep seated principle. So Hillary Clinton was, you know, for free trade, and then she's all of a sudden now against free trade, and TPP, and NAFTA. And she's switched on a number of the social issues. And whether that's good or bad, you know, we can fight about that. You can see those flips, but they are major cataclysmic flips in policy.
This is not that. He still wants to secure this country, secure the border; unlike Hillary Clinton, who wants to release criminal aliens into society like, I guess, her predecessor has.
LEMON: Maria, do you think that this is a flip flop?
CARDONA: Well, we don't really know yet because we have no clue what his immigration policy is. He seems to say something different depending on who he talks to. But I will say this, and I've said this ever since we heard that there's possibly this, quote, unquote, "softening of his immigration plan."
It's certainly not going to work for Latino voters. Because when you announce your presidential campaign, calling Mexican immigrants rapists and criminals, that right there is going to shut you down.
MCENANY: He didn't.
CARDONA: When he -- yes, he did, when he follow that with saying that we are going to deport them all.
Yes, he wants to keep facilities together, but guess what, he's going to deport those families. He's going to do it in a humane way. I don't know what that means.
LEMON: What Kayleigh is saying is there is a distinction between saying we're going to send -- Mexico sends its rapist and its murderers, but that there is no evidence that Mexico is sending.
CARDONA: No, there's not. And so that right there was a huge bigoted, racist insult to all immigrants and all Latinos here in this country.
MCENANY: He never said it to all Latinos.
CARDONA: And that is how, that is how they took it.
MCENANY: I'm so sorry. OK, OK, there's a distinction --
CARDONA: Kayleigh, I'm not finished. I didn't interrupt you. Kayleigh, I did not interrupt you. I did not interrupt you.
So when he follows that up with a deportation force and he talks about replicating a program called Operation Wetback, when you talk about a Mexican-American judge saying that he can't do his job because of his Mexican heritage, those are racist, bigoted comments. And so let's be clear, this quote, unquote, "softening" is not an appeal to Latino voters. It is an appeal to try to get the white voters to believe that you're not as racist and you're not as bigoted as what the last 429 days had made him sound like.
LEMON: I think from the people who are sitting up here, for the surrogates, saying softening, but I think the people at home, it's very insulting.
People at home aren't please. They know that it's a change. It's a flip flop.
CARDONA: Absolutely, it is. It is in fact -- that's what it is.
LEMON: He's changing his policy, Bakari.
Bakari, this is a change in his policy.
BAKARI SELLERS, HILLARY CLINTON SUPPORTER: Well, I mean, it is a change in his policy and it is a flip-flop.
I mean, I think that all of your surrogates so far, Kayleigh and Andre and Maria and yourself have even pointed out very clearly, when you start from a position of Operation Wetback, which was very, very brutal in 1948 under Dwight Eisenhower, where they went in homes and literally gathered people up in a very brutal fashion and deported them, and took them back across the border.
When you talk about patterning your immigration policy after that, and then today you're saying that, no, we're not going to have a deportation force, we're going to keep families together, that in itself is a deep seated flip flop based on the principle of deportation.
Now to talk about Andre's point just briefly, I think Andre let his candidate off the hook because Andre said that people want to know about policy points. We want to have this discussion about policy. That is true. We want to have a discussion about policy.
Donald Trump's main point, what he sold Republican primary voters was immigration. What Republican primary voters have been bamboozled.
We have been saying this from the beginning, that it's politically impractical, it's politically stupid, it's financially impossible and you just simply can't do it. And now Donald Trump has sold this bill of goods to his Republican primary voters, they bought it and today he's saying, you know what, I'm sorry, Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and John Kasich are somewhere kicking themselves saying I should have thought of that.
LEMON: Hey, Andre, before you respond, let me find this real quick.
Because this is Jeb Bush. This is from the previous segment. This is -- can we put up Jeb Bush's spokesperson. It's from the last segment.
Dana, if we can get it.
Her name is Kristy Campbell. She issued a statement tonight saying, "It is unsurprising that Donald Trump is finally faced with reconciling his immigration policy with reality. Something Governor Bush predicted last year."
Go ahead, Andre.
BAUER: Well, I was just going to say I supported Donald Trump in the primary, and I did not support him because of his immigration stance. I supported him because I wanted to absolutely change Washington. To put it in a not nice term, Washington needs an enema.
By no uncertain terms, I'm fed up with the policy, the direction that they're taking this county. And he was the only one willing to take on the establishment.
And I didn't love every single thing about Donald Trump. I'm not one of these surrogates, who say I love every single policy. I'm an independent thinker.
LEMON: OK, to that point, though, now he's coming back to where those candidates were from the beginning. That does not -- that is not concerning to you that he is becoming everything that he said he wasn't going to become?
BAUER: I watched an interview one time with Ron Paul. And the person interviewing him gave him a different perspective. And I love the fact he look back and said, I never thought about it like that. What a great perspective.
I like people that run for office and don't know everything every single time and are willing to evolve when given new facts.
MCENANY: And to Andre's point, voters were interviewed on some of the networks today. Are you frustrated? Donald Trump voters that he did this. And none of the voters were upset, because I think that you misunderstand Republican voters, when you think we're foaming at the mouth wanting to -- I'm not meaning you personally, I'm meaning Democrats, generally -- mischaracterize Republican voters thinking we are foaming at the mount, wanting to deport people. That is not true.
We want a secure border. We want people -- if they're good, hard working people -- to be here. But we don't want people Kate Steinle getting killed by someone who was supposed to be in jail, but because of some liberal policies, this man would slip out, back on the streets.
It's unfair to Kate Steinle's parents and the number of parents who have stood there, losing -- who have lost child, who have stood by Donald Trump and supported him.
LEMON: Bakari --
CARDONA: You know what, Kayleigh --
LEMON: Let Bakari in, Maria.
CARDONA: Kayleigh --
SELLERS: I just wanted to say -- go ahead, Maria.
CARDONA: Go ahead, Bakari.
SELLERS: Go ahead, Maria.
LEMON: Bakari Sellers, go.
SELLERS: I think it's really -- my heart goes out to Kate Steinle and her family. But all immigrants who come into this country are not rapists. All immigrants who come into this country are not murders. All immigrants who come into this country are not trying to commit a heinous crime.
In fact, many of them do the daily task every day to help our lives be that much better. And so my heart does go out to Kate Steinle.
And that individual should not have been in this country, but there's so many hard-working immigrants every single day. And to actually say that all of a sudden, because of a conversation, Donald Trump bound humanity.
One of the most despicable things that Donald Trump says, and one of the most despicable things that his surrogates say is that we're going to do this humanely, as if to say that this people aren't human beings.
We're not talking about a litter of kittens. We're not talking about stray dogs. We're actually talking about human beings. So I'm glad that Donald Trump found some humanity, and I guess I'll give him that 80 days out from the election.
CARDONA: Yes, it's true. And here's a thing --
LEMON: All right, I've got to get to a break.
Maria, I've got to get to a break. But right after the break, I'll give you the first word, I promise.
LEMON: We'll be right back.
[23:32:03] LEMON: All right. Back with the gang. Go ahead, Maria. What did you want to say?
CARDONA: So I wanted to say this because I really will not say this very often that Kayleigh is right in that most Republican voters don't agree with Donald Trump on his draconian deport-them-all plan.
But the reality is is that in the Republican primaries, in every single state except for Wisconsin and New York, the vast majority of the people who voted for Trump voted for him because of those draconian immigration policies.
So he is playing with fire here if in fact he is going to represent this flip-flop, you saw Ann Coulter actually tweet something out that says if Donald Trump flip-flops on immigration, I am not going to be supporting him anymore.
LEMON: She actually said that in an interview as well, she said that it was -- that he would become a different candidate if that had happened.
CARDONA: Exactly, Steve King -- Representative Steve King, one of the most anti-immigrant representatives out there also said, warning Donald Trump not to change his stance on immigration.
Now, that doesn't mean that all of his supporters will leave him because I agree, you know, where else are they going to go? But I also think that while he's trying to do this appeal to suburban white voters, at the same day he's calling Hillary Clinton a bigot and he has actually also questioning her mental abilities and her stamina. Those are all dogwhistles that are very gender-biased.
LEMON: You're reading ahead in the textbook, Maria. Because we're going -- so here we go. Here's his attack on Hillary Clinton tonight. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Hillary Clinton is a bigot who sees people of color only as votes, not as human beings worthy of a better future. She's going to do nothing for African-Americans. She's going to do nothing for the Hispanics. She's only going to take care of herself, her husband, her consultants, her donors. These are the people she cares about. She doesn't care what her policies have done to your communities.
LEMON: Bakari Sellers, so he had said before that voters should reject -- or African-American voters should reject the bigotry of Hillary Clinton. The first time that he's called her a bigot directly. What's your reaction?
SELLERS: That's going to be a really hard sell for a man like Donald Trump. While Donald Trump was actually being sued by the Department of Justice, Hillary Clinton a few years before that was going undercover into rural white school districts studying segregation.
She was actually coming to Andre and my's home state of South Carolina, actually going and helping get young African-Americans who were juveniles out of adult prisons because they were being mistreated, they were being raped, they were being treated unfairly and harshly.
And so her so track record is actually pretty extensive when it comes to this issue. So Donald Trump is going to be really hard-pressed in making that point.
But I don't think I've been clear for the past week that Donald Trump has been making this quote, unquote, "appeal," as many anchors are calling it because I don't even think it's an appeal. I think you have Republicans in this country, people like Rand Paul, who is working with Cory Booker on criminal justice reform.
You have Republicans like Tim Scott and Paul Ryan who are talking about poverty, especially concentrated areas of poverty in African- American communities.
Donald Trump is not doing that. Donald Trump is being extremely condescending in saying that because we've been voting this way for two or three decades, somehow African-Americans don't grasp policy, which is disrespectful, ignorant, and almost racist.
LEMON: I want you to watch this if you guys -- let's put this up. This is a woman behind Donald Trump when he made that comment as she's seen. Did you see her?
CARDONA: That was classic.
SELLERS: That was hilarious.
LEMON: She needs to be on the show.
CARDONA: Yes, and she makes the point that I was going to make, which is if his appeal is really to suburban women voters, calling Hillary Clinton a bigot...
LEMON: Is that the reaction you think suburban women will have?
MCENANY: No, because first of all... CARDONA: Yes, I do.
MCENANY: ... George W. Bush gave a speech, George W. Bush, where he talked about the "soft bigotry of low expectations," and he referred to the Democratic point of view as one that is bigoted.
So this is a line that has been used before by other Republicans.
SELLERS: No, that's not the same thing.
MCENANY: And by the way, the definition of a bigot is being intolerant of another person's opinion, you can go look up the definition. And I think it is completely fair to suggest that because Donald Trump has proffered an alternative view for certain communities, an alternative way, alternative policies that these communities should look at.
And what's the response? Many people on the left have called him racist. And that's a completely false accusation, that's a bigoted way of viewing Donald Trump. It's not tolerating another person's opinion. I think it's a completely fair criticism.
LEMON: Go ahead, Bakari.
SELLERS: But that's not quite accurate. And let me just say that when George W. Bush talked about the...
MCENANY: You can go to Merriam-Webster, it's accurate.
SELLERS: ... talked about the soft bigotry of low expectation, it was actually a very good sentiment, a very good speech because the worst part about low expectations is oftentimes you get what you expect.
But I want Kayleigh to tell me one time in which Hillary Clinton has been bigoted.
MCENANY: Because she paints my candidate as a racist. She stood on a stage next to Elizabeth Warren, and because my candidate puts forward an alternate vision, a positive one, an inclusive one, one that believes in economic prosperity, he mentioned small business owners, franchises are 25 percent African-American, he has put forth an inclusive vision.
And despite that, Hillary Clinton stood on the stage next to Elizabeth Warren who had the audacity to call my candidate a "thin-skinned racist." That's the definition of bigotry, being intolerant of someone's viewpoint.
BAUER: She used "superpredator."
MCENANY: She used "superpredator," exactly.
BAUER: Really under her birther started way back before Donald Trump came in. Her group kind of pushed that birther movement.
SELLERS: Let me say this to Andre about the "superpredator" comment. That comment was absurd, that comment was offensive, that comment was very hurtful. And although it was in...
CARDONA: And she apologized for it.
SELLERS: Yes. Although 1994, I was only 10 years old, when you hear those type things, when you hear the way that although when you look at it in context, she wasn't talking about African-American males specifically, she was talking about gangs and cartels, that language, it had no place, it had no place in the political discourse.
And I challenged Hillary Clinton on that. And you know what, she owned it and she apologized.
CARDONA: That's right.
SELLERS: I've never seen Donald Trump apologize for discriminating against African-Americans, giving them applications in his housing to cite color...
MCENANY: He didn't do that.
SELLERS: I've never seen him apologize to anyone of the five of the Central Park Five. I've never seen him apologize to the president of the United States for trying to delegitimize him, regardless of whether or not how he feels about his policy.
So I understand your talking point about "superpredator," I feel the same way. But I hope you push your candidate to apologize for not his soft bigotry, but his hard bigotry.
MCENANY: He's not going to apologize for things he didn't do. The 1974 housing discrimination case you're referring to...
LEMON: He settled.
MCENANY: ... was settled without an admission of guilt. He settled because he didn't want to pay big lawyer fees, that was never...
SELLERS: He settled two.
MCENANY: It was never proven in a court of law.
SELLERS: He settled two.
MCENANY: And it's not responsible to come here and suggest that it was true when it wasn't proven in a court of law.
(CROSSTALK) BAUER: ... with one person, the second one, they couldn't even come
up with one name or person that had been affected on the second one. So I don't whether it was settled, they never even came up with -- they had no case whatsoever.
SELLERS: Please tell me about the Central Park Five and his lack of apology for that.
CARDONA: There's that and then he never apologized to Judge Curiel, which was clearly a bigoted and racist comment.
MCENANY: OK. This is when Andre is so right. Andre is so correct that none of this is productive at all. I can retort to you that Bill Clinton was at an all-white golf club and he was called out by the NAACP.
But none of this is productive. None of this helps people who are in inner cities, who are hurting...
SELLERS: Well, why can't you...
MCENANY: ... who have been hurt by the Obama economy.
SELLERS: It is productive.
LEMON: Hang on, hang on, hang on, everyone. I've got to get to a break. But the whole reason we're talking about it tonight is because Donald Trump called Hillary Clinton a bigot.
CARDONA: Exactly. We want to talk about issues, but he doesn't.
LEMON: We'll be right back.
LEMON: And we are back now with our panel. First one to Kayleigh McEnany. Here's how Hillary Clinton reacted tonight to Trump calling her a bigot.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
CLINTON: It reminds me of that great saying that Maya Angelou had that when someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time. And Donald Trump has shown us who he is. And we ought to believe him.
He is taking a hate movement mainstream. He has brought it into campaign. He is bringing to our communities and our country.
And, you know, someone who has questioned the citizenship of the first African-American president, who has courted white supremacists, who has been sued for housing discrimination against communities of color, who has attacked a judge for his Mexican heritage, and promised a mass deportation force is someone who is very much peddling bigotry and prejudice and paranoia.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
LEMON: What's your reaction, Kayleigh?
MCENANY: I thought it was an irresponsible way to respond. Right after her Maya Angelou quote, she went on to say that he's bringing in a mainstream hate movement into his campaign, despite the fact that he's dismissed racism time and time again.
More Republicans voters have turned out to vote for this man than any candidate in Republican presidential history. We are not hateful, we are inclusive. Donald Trump is inclusive. And I would return to her Maya quote with a Martin Luther King quote, that we must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.
And right now that is not doing anything to bring this country together. Her statement just divided us further.
LEMON: Bakari, what were you saying?
SELLERS: I need a PSA, please. We're going to have to put a moratorium on the quotes of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in political discussions, especially when we're talking about race and bigotry, because there's absolutely no way that Dr. Martin Luther King would sit back and support Donald Trump.
I think Charles Blow actually said it on your air, because if you...
LEMON: Stand by, stand by, here it is. Let's play it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHARLES BLOW, OP-ED COLUMNIST, NEW YORK TIMES: This is the most horrible kind of bigotry. And the fact that people keep asking the same question, particularly to black commentators like me, is he reaching out to black people, he is not reaching out to black people.
There is nothing about this appeal that has any resonance with anyone black that I can even find. I even looked at the largest black websites that I could find just to see if anybody was taking this seriously.
Not a single person that I could find was taking this -- the only people taking this seriously is white people.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Bakari, last night on this program, and I'll see if we can find that, he said if you are supporting Donald Trump, then you're part of the bigotry that is Donald Trump. Something to that extent. SELLERS: And it's important to know, because I don't go as far as
calling Donald Trump a racist. In fact, I don't think Donald Trump is a racist. I heard Kayleigh quote me earlier, but she didn't quote the whole thing.
I don't think Donald Trump is a racist. I think he's more dangerous than that because I just think he utilizes racism. And by doing things such as failure to disavow David Duke in his interview with Jake Tapper, and then coming back later after those primaries and then disavowing him, by having these conversations, many times what we're seeing with Donald Trump is, yes, he's dabbling in racism.
That's what Stephen Bannon does at Breitbart. That's why this connection tomorrow is going to be so, so important so that people can see who is working with Donald Trump.
And you know, there is nothing pure about Roger Stone. I mean, Roger Stone is a bigot and he's racist as well, someone who is very close to Donald Trump. So all of these things play into it.
MCENANY: Dr. Martin Luther King -- first of all, I want to say this, was someone who was inclusive and he looked to build bridges and looked to bring people together. And I think we should all aspire to spread that message.
And I respect you Bakari for not attaching the term "racist" to my candidate. I think that's very responsible of you even though you disagree with him on certain things.
But, you know, I think Donald Trump has elevated an African-American woman to oversee his charitable funds, Lynne Patton, who speaks glowingly of him. If he was that...
SELLERS: Is there anyone who doesn't work for him?
MCENANY: If he was that label, Bakari, we would see person after person who has worked for him in his company and has seen him act as a racist, but we don't have that. There is no one in his company coming out for saying that. So it's irresponsible for people to label him as that.
SELLERS: Let me just say this, I'm sorry, Maria, for hogging this segment or this part of the discussion.
CARDONA: No, by all means.
SELLERS: My apologies.
But I think that one of the things that would be helpful is if you could find an Hispanic-American or an African-American that actually says positive things, as you say, about Donald Trump, that doesn't work for him, OK? That is condescending on its face. MCENANY: We have, Ben Carson, Allen West...
SELLERS: But also, just -- that was funny.
SELLERS: But also let me just say -- let me just say...
MCENANY: I don't know why that's funny. They're folks too.
SELLERS: Let me just say that -- I want to go back to the beginning. Because my father actually knew Dr. King. My father actually marched with Dr. King. My father actually didn't pay the ultimate sacrifice like Dr. King did, but he was also shot. My father was also in prison.
So a lot of my journey in life is a lot like what I hoped my father's was and what Dr. King's was, which was to actually bring people together, which was actually talk about tolerance, and beat back the bigotry that is Donald Trump.
So for you to actually quote Dr. Martin Luther King, and other surrogates to quote Dr. Martin Luther King, it really, really pains me because it's so intellectually disingenuous because it doesn't reflect the man at all.
MCENANY: I think that's very unfair. I think we're all allowed to quote Dr. Martin Luther King and respect him...
SELLERS: Well, find somebody else, like another civil rights leader.
LEMON: Let her finish and then I'll let you get in, Maria.
MCENANY: It's about bringing this country together. And labeling someone a racist who is not that and you don't know him, none of us have met him and so to label him as that is unfair.
LEMON: OK, but listen, hang on, Maria, Dr. Martin Luther King did say that we should all together, but he also was very specific in pointing out bigotry and racism even in the country where he said that we should come together.
So, go ahead.
CARDONA: And here's the thing, when you come together, you build bridges. Donald Trump doesn't want to build bridges, he wants to build a wall. And what do walls do? They separate people. They divide people.
LEMON: Let Andre get in. CARDONA: That's exactly what Donald Trump has been doing from the
moment that he burst onto the scene with the birther movement and then with his presidential campaign.
And so when you have that kind of rhetoric, Kayleigh, and you're right, we don't know Donald Trump's mind, but we can judge him by what he has done and what he has said. And what he has done and what he has said is bigoted and racist.
BAUER: Well, he was never a racist until he ran for office. I don't predict a -- for decades I read books on Donald Trump, I read reviews on the books, and nobody ever talked about him being racist.
LEMON: Donald Trump has done things that people have seen as racist when that Bakari has pointed out, when you talk about the Central Park Five, when you talk about practices in his business.
I hear Kayleigh talking about Donald Trump, you know, promoting minorities. You have to, it's a law. That is not an attribute that you promote -- that you promote minorities in the work force, you have to do that by law.
But go on.
BAUER: Just Google pictures of him and look back at the decades where he's with Don King. I mean, you see decades, I mean, 40 years of him...
LEMON: I'm not saying that he is -- listen, listen, I don't want you guys to get me wrong. I'm not saying that he is. I'm just saying to Maria's point, you have to look at people's actions, and you have to look at their past, what they've and what they've said.
And not all Americans view things in a political lens like you do where you can be on a different side of the aisle one day, you can come on CNN or on FOX or on MSNBC or whatever, and you can talk crap about Donald Trump.
And then the next day you run his campaign. Most people don't live in that sort of life so they're looking at a person for what he said and what he has done. They're not politicos.
MCENANY: Well, what he has done -- it's unfair to mischaracterize what he has done. To suggest -- to bring up the 1974 housing discrimination case, as if that was proven in a court of law that he was committing those actions, that's not true. That didn't happen.
With regard to the Central Park Five. It is horrible what happened to those young men.
BAUER: In 1974, who didn't live in a segregated neighborhood? I mean, almost everybody did. LEMON: But that didn't make it right, Andre.
BAUER: I'm not saying it made it right or wrong, but you're judging somebody by today's standards for something that was many decades ago.
LEMON: OK. I'm going to do one more block with you guys. But so we'll get to the break. But listen, that didn't make it right. I lived in a segregated neighborhood. We didn't like it. We were one of the first black families in a white neighborhood. It was tough.
But just because it was that way then, again, it did not make it was right. It happened to a lot of folks.
BAUER: I'm not saying it's right, but you're using today's standards about something that happened long ago that is totally different.
MCENANY: It was never proven. Never proven.
LEMON: OK. We'll be right back, we'll be right back. We'll do another segment.
LEMON: All right. We're back. Where were we?
MCENANY: Talking about the false accusations against Donald Trump. I could sit here and talk about Hillary Clinton being friends with Robert Byrd. Bill Clinton golfing at an all-white golf club. Hillary Clinton calling a certain community "superpredators."
And it's unfair and it's unproductive to people who there is a real disparity. It is sad to me that the net wealth of an African-American is 11,000. For a white person, it is 142,000. That is inexplainable, inexcusable, and Donald Trump wants to fix that.
And we only help people when we knowledge the problems and we're responsible with our words and talk about the issues.
CARDONA: And here is the problem. So, yes, we should absolutely be talking about issues, because Donald Trump has not put anything out substantively that would help Latinos, African-Americans, working Americans in any way, shape, or form with their economic issues in the country.
I would love to hear it. But everything that he has put out would help rich people like himself, number one. Number two, we would love to talk about these issues like you, Andre said, but when you have your candidate calling Hillary Clinton a bigot, then that is what we end up talking about.
LEMON: Andre? BAUER: Well, the speech was longer than one minute and one sentence.
If you want to talk about it, you talk about rich people, I know it is fun and easy to beat on rich people. But I have got a newsflash for you.
Rich people create jobs. They own companies. They employ people. Poor people don't create nearly as many jobs so we had better do something to encourage people that are sending their money to other countries or have it over there to repatriate it, bring it back.
Bring those jobs here. Don't continue to see people like Carrier move 1,400 jobs to Mexico.
LEMON: I have got to go. I have got two seconds. So Bakari, you can't even get in. I'm sorry, guys. Good night.
CARDONA: Good night, Don, thanks.
BAUER: See you guys.
LEMON: Good night.