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Cruz And Kasich Join Forces To Stop Trump; Kasich On Plan To Take Delegates From Trump; 384 Democratic Delegates Up For Grabs Tuesday; Sanders: "We Do Have A Path To Victory"; Koch: "Possible" Clinton Could Be Better Than GOP Nominee; Springsteen Covers "Purple Rain"; Musical Tributes, New Details About Prince's Last Days. Aired 8-9p ET

Aired April 25, 2016 - 20:00   ET


[20:00:14] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening.

If you wanted to compare the Republican race for the White House to a reality show, the obvious choice would be "the Apprentice." Frontrunner Donald Trump once hosted that show after all, but all of a sudden it turned into survivor with two contenders forming alliance to try to stop the frontrunner's momentum before tribal council, namely the convention in July.

Trump and John Kasich have events happening right now. You are looking at live pictures. The alliance is between Kasich and Senator Ted Cruz who joined together to try to divide and conquer some upcoming primary states. Now, the way the alliance is supposed to work is, like everything else about this race, a little complicated, more than just a little bit murky.

Five states vote tomorrow. But Cruz and Kasich are looking toward contests that come later. Basically, Cruz says he will cede New Mexico and Oregon to Kasich and focus on Indiana. Now, whether the voters in those states go along with the plan, who know? And it is either unprecedented and un-genius tactical political move or desperate attempt to stop the momentum that has so far proven unstoppable. Take a guess by which way Donald Trump sees it. Here is what he said at a rally in Pennsylvania just a short time ago.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: So we had some big news today. You had lying Ted announce that he can't win by himself. He cannot do it. You know, he is a choker. He cannot do it. So he said let me form a partnership which I call, what do we call it, go ahead. Go ahead. What do we call it? Let me form called collusion, folks. It is called collusion. So I wrote up something. But here's a guy couldn't fight by himself, he was saying how well he did. Look, he's lying Ted. He holds the bible high and then he lies. He puts it down. Lying Ted.


COOPER: Sara Murray is following the Trump campaign. She joins us now. So, what more can you tell us about Trump's reaction to the Cruz-

Kasich alliance? Pretty clear there.

SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Well, Anderson, he certainly doesn't seem very worried about this alliance derailing his camp to the upcoming states. Throughout the course of the day he called Kasich and Cruz pathetic. He has called them losers. And you heard him there just minutes ago calling Ted Cruz (INAUDIBLE). One thing he has been doing is he has been going hard after John Kasich today in a way that even worse than we saw right before Kasich won Ohio. So it will be interesting to see how the Ohio governor fairs in all of that.

COOPER: And how is the Trump campaign feeling the day before these five primaries tomorrow night?

MURRAY: The campaign feels very confident going into tomorrow. These are five states where they feel like they're on solid ground. If you like Donald Trump could potentially (INAUDIBLE) all five of them. And right here in Pennsylvania, the Trump campaign is trying to show it has its act together in terms of organization. This is a state with a number of unbound delegates. They are putting up a slate. They held a conference call with their delegates in these states. They are trying to prove that they can be organized, not just at the polls by their own supporters, but also in the delegate fight, Anderson.

COOPER: All right. Sara Murray, thanks.

So what's behind the timing of this the other two, Cruz and Kasich? I will be speaking with governor Kasich later this hour.

But first, let's check in with the Cruz campaign. Sunlen Serfaty joins me now.

So the campaign has been against any kind of alliance up until now. I guess the question is why the change?

SUNLEN SERFATY, NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, quite frankly, the Cruz's campaign and his campaign is standing in the poll has changed since then. Their standing in the races changed. You know, the Cruz campaign was first approached by the Kasich campaign about this nearly two months ago, and then they wouldn't even entertain the idea at all. Cruz then preferring to call John Kasich a spoiler in the race.

Well, fast forward to today, and now Cruz himself has no mathematical path to get to 1237 without a contested convention. So I think the fact that they are striking this alliance really speaks to their reality at the moment and the standing of their campaign, and really speaking again to how much of a Hail Mary pass last ditch effort this really is for his campaign going forward.

COOPER: But it is interesting because even after the announcement by his campaign, Cruz is trying to down play the alliance.

SERFATY: Absolutely. It was just so fascinating to watch on the campaign trail today. Senator Cruz almost validating and explaining this alliance. And as you know really downplaying the significance, as nothing unusual or out of the ordinary at all. The way he framed it he said this was just a decision about allocating resources that made sense for each of our campaigns.

But I think what most striking is how Senator Cruz really played up what this meant for the John Kasich campaign. He almost lethally announced here at this rally in a numerous times today, announcing so proud that there was big news, that John Kasich had announced that they are pulling out of Indiana. The fact that he framed it that way really, you know, played up his end of the bargain, what Kasich gave, and he didn't mention his end of the bargain, that he had to concede New Mexico and Oregon. So, interesting facts the way he was (INAUDIBLE), Anderson.

[20:05:20] COOPER: All right. Sunlen Serfaty, thanks very much. Certainly, an unusual move, this agreement between Cruz and Kasich. The question, one of many, is whether the strategy will be a turning point in this campaign or create even more of a fragmentation in the Republican Party.

Joining me now is Sean Spicer, chief strategist and communications director for the RNC.

Sean, I mean, this deal, Donald Trump calling it collusion, saying it will illegal in any other business besides politics, is he right?

SEAN SPICER, CHIEF STRATEGIST AND COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR FOR THE RNC: No. I mean, candidates are free to pursue whatever strategy they think is best in their best interest. They can go to places they want. They can spend the time and resource, hire who they want, but each of them has to be satisfied with the strategy that they choose when it is all said and done.

COOPER: So this is totally acceptable by RNC standards, this deal?

SPICER: It is not a question of acceptable or unacceptable, that's not our job. Our job is to make sure that we have a fair and transparent process whoever they compete for our party's nomination. Not to decide what's a smart tactic or wise use of resources, so. But, is it permitted? Absolutely.

COOPER: Have you seen anything like it?

SPICER: Not that I can recall. But I mean, this has been probably the most interesting cycle in anyone's history at least in modern politics.

COOPER: Does it bolster, though, to serve the argument, the Trump's argument, that the system is somehow rigged, that people, the establishment, you know, are the establishment working together to deny him the nomination?

SPICER: Well, look. The system has always been out for everyone to see. The process, the selection and allocation of delegates has been out in the open for all to see. At the end of the day, this is our party's nomination. It is the delegates who are elected by grassroots that not only will decide ultimately our nominee for president and vice president, but pass a set of rules by which the party will live by for the next four years. And a platform from which we will spouse our principles and solutions for America. Those delegates are chosen by the grassroots voters from coast to coast. And that's the process that we have used since 1856.

COOPER: But this alliance, I mean, is unprecedented. They're not working together to try to secure the nomination for themselves, at least not before the convention, because that's not mathematically possible at this point. They're simply now attempting to deny Trump any path to get there.

SPICER: OK. I mean, look. I understand that. There's ways. If Donald Trump does get to 1237 bound delegates, I said it before, I will say it again. He becomes the presumptive nominee. Full stop, end of story. I think at some point, though, other campaigns realize if they can't mathematically get there, then of course, there's a ploy to deny somebody else and really starts to make the case to delegates, especially those unbound delegates going into Cleveland.

COOPER: But by definition, isn't this some form of collusion?

SPICER: Well, again, I'm not sure I fully understand all of the details. I know Sunlen was just going through the Cruz campaign's discussion or comments today. It is not really for me to define what it is. If they have a strategy that wants them to work with another campaign to achieve an outcome, that's up to them. There's nothing illegal about it.

COOPER: Right. I know the RNC, they launched a Web site, to try to help people understand the nomination process better. How important is complete transparency? How important that is going to be if this goes to contested convention? Because already, seems to be a lot of people, candidates included, that don't necessarily have faith in the process.

SPICER: That's true and I appreciate it because we haven't seen this since 1976 when we have gone to circumstance there hasn't been a presumptive nominee. So for most folks who been embark from party politics, they haven't lived through something like this. And it is incumbent upon on us at the RNC to really get out there and explain the process by which delegates are both allocated and selected. And then if we do go to an open convention in Cleveland, to make sure that the process is fair and transparent. And that entire world will see a democratic system at work. That's the important thing on this is to make sure that there is people can watch the process unfold, watch the delegates make their selection, and watch us unite around a nominee that will go on a victory.

COOPER: All right, Sean Spicer. Sean, thanks very much.

Fascinating day yet another one. Just ahead, what Trump supporters say about the Cruz-Kasich alliance? Gary Tuchman went deep in to crowd at Trump rally in Pennsylvania and talk to some of his fans.

Also coming up, we will talk to governor Kasich himself about why he decided to cut this deal with rival, Ted Cruz, or whether he is worried that they have given Trump new ammunition in the battle for votes.


[20:13:10] COOPER: The presidential candidates are heading to another round of crucial primaries tomorrow in five northeastern states. In the Republican states, a new alliance has raised the volume and in escalating drama.

And as we have been talking about, Ted Cruz and John Kasich are now teaming up to try to stop Donald Trump from securing the nomination. Mr. Trump calling the deal an act of desperation, outright collusion. Trump says it is more proof the system is rigged. One of his core campaign (INAUDIBLE). And a claim that his supporters are, well, agreeing with.

Gary Tuchman talked to some of them today in Pennsylvania.


GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): They keep arriving earlier and earlier to Trump rallies. The people in front arriving about ten hours before their candidate showed up. And they keep getting more angry at his competitors.

JOHN SOPKANICH, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I am totally against the colluding. It is pretty sad that two grown men, two candidates have to do this when they have no shot.

TUCHMAN: The decision by Ted Cruz and John Kasich to cut a deal in Indiana, Oregon, and New Mexico to try to stop Trump is not being well received here.

BARBARA MASON, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I think they are going to do anything dirty they can. They're threatened by Mr. Trump because they know no one controls him. He doesn't owe anyone favors.

TUCHMAN: The loyalty that Donald Trump has cultivated since his first rallies this past summer is readily apparent. But with the behind the scenes delegate battles, and Cruz and Kasich banding together, what is also becoming apparent is that to many, Donald Trump is becoming a political martyr.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Trump is being victimized by the system, yes.

TUCHMAN: Do you think Trump is being victimized?


TUCHMAN: You do? And why do you think he is being victimized? He is a big man. Why do you think he is being victimized?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He wants to make things right again in America and the other ones don't. KELSEY POLACHECK, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I think it is funny because I

think at the end of the day it is just giving Trump more supporters and more attention. And it is just making them look worse. So it is back firing on them. That's what I think.

TUCHMAN: You feel it is wrong?


TUCHMAN: Why do you feel it is wrong?

[20:15:02] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They're ganging up on him. They have no other way of winning. That's their only way to win. The majority of Americans want Trump. They want to take it away.

TUCHMAN: Everyone we talked to here says they believe the move by governor Kasich and Senator Cruz will help Trump. It helps reinforce us against them narrative. And many say Trump should stay on the offensive and not worry about those that say he doesn't act presidential.

Your son, (INAUDIBLE), he is a medical student council election. He said I want to call my opponent a liar or crooked or little, what would you say?

KRISTIE SARAS, TRUMP SUPPORTER: It is not really nice.

TUCHMAN: So why is it OK if Donald Trump does that running for president of the United States?

SARAS: God. I don't know. Maybe it is not really that nice that he says it but --

TUCHMAN: But you are OK with it when he does?

SARAS: Yes. It is Donald Trump.


COOPER: And Gary joins us now.

So I mean, both Ted Cruz and John Kasich say not only Trump is going to lose general election, but he will cause damage to the GOP. What do Trump supporters, I mean, they clearly are not buying that line.

TUCHMAN: Well, there are many people here, Anderson, are also concerned about the future of the Republican Party but for a very different reason. They believe that if Donald Trump doesn't get the nomination, it will mean that he was cheated out of it, and therefore they don't plan to vote in November.

Now the election is still six and a half months away. A lot of things could happen. But that doesn't bode particularly well for the Republican Party. That women's group I talked to, Anderson, about 20, 25 women there, and I asked if Ted Cruz gets the nomination, how many of you would support Ted Cruz, none of them raised their hands. Two of them most said they would consider John Kasich.

COOPER: All right, Gary Tuchman. Gary, thanks.

A lot to discuss with the panel. Joining me Mark Preston, executive editor of CNN politics, also CNN political commentator Errol Louis, Margaret Hoover, Mary Katharine Ham, Ross Douthat and Jeffrey Lord who is a Trump supporter.

Margaret, let me start with you. Is this just a Hail Mary pass by Cruz and Kasich to try to stop Trump?

MARGARET HOOVER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, it is not even really that - I mean, Mitt Romney had a better idea about doing it. And Mitt Romney said where you're running strong, all Republican voters who vote, that was a better plan because the candidates themselves haven't even really endorsed their non-alliance.

So, yes. I suppose if it actually worked and they have rolled it out eight weeks ago, it could be useful. But look. This notion that it is collusion is crazy. I mean, Donald Trump is the art of the deal guy. He is the weakest frontrunner we have ever had. His job right now is to be solidifying support to do exactly what Cruz and Kasich are supposedly doing.

COOPER: But are you saying it is not collusion? I mean, they are colluding, aren't they?

HOOVER: But collusion as you know implies some sort of fraudulent and pejorative purpose. This isn't fraudulent. This is legal.

COOPER: Mary Katharine, does it make sense to not go all the way and say, you know, if you're Kasich, say to my voters don't vote for me in this state, vote for Cruz? Because that is going to help with the math. They're not doing that.

MARY KATHARINE HAM, SENIOR WRITER, THE FEDERALIST: But I think that would be the way to go, if you are going -- this is actually a real pass and you want the receiver to catch it, yes, you do that, because strategic voting is a hard sell. And I think Margaret is right. Had you done with a couple weeks ago, it would have made more difference like many saying and many attacks on Donald Trump during the primary, they have all been felt like a little too little too late, much like when Mitt Romney endorsed or did not endorse at the time. And I thought, you know, maybe if he did it pre-Nevada, he might have made a difference in that state, for instance and stops the momentum. But then you get these things that just come a little late.


ROSS DOUTHAT, OP-ED COLUMNIST, NEW YORK TIMES: Well, this is very weird. I mean, it is basically seems like a deal between the two campaign managers where they sort of did this kind of - I mean, literally, it is like we are not going to open offices in these states. And we are going close offices in these states. It is sort of the most inside baseball kind of campaign minutia, which then they decided to put out a press release about without clearly having the candidates, especially Kasich as far as I can tell. And I guess, we will hear from him shortly, but without having him lined up on side to say yes, people in Indiana should probably vote for Ted Cruz. He doesn't want to say that.

HAM: Well, and the timing and the bobbling of it are indicative of why Donald Trump is the leader thus far, even with a small plurality.

COOPER: Jeff Lord, I mean, do you think this deal is going force the Trump campaign to shift strategy for those three states at all?

JEFFREY LORD, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: No. I mean, I think frankly this was a mistake. It is certainly a mistake on Senator Cruz's part. I mean, this is the guy who is made his bones as the anti- establishment person. And between he and Donald Trump, they have been getting 70 to 80 percent of the vote in the primaries. All of a sudden he darts over to the other side. I mean, that can't help but damage him.

But aside from that, I just think this is admission that they are in trouble. They are in big trouble. As governor Kasich said, he doesn't have the resources to keep going on here in sort of a stylish fashion that you would want your candidate to do. So, it is pretty much admission that they have a big problem on their hands.

COOPER: Errol, do you think it is going to back fire?

ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I don't know if it will back fire. I would suggest, though, that they do this a little bit more carefully in the sense that for example, the super PACs are not on board. So the president of one of the big Super PACs supporting Ted Cruz said today that they are running ads in Indiana attacking John Kasich. So they were not signatories to this deal. Only the campaigns can do that. And they still have reason to fake that what they have always wanted to do which was to have Trump one on one, is still something that might be within their grasp.

But I men, the one thing to keep in mind, I think though, is that as bad and as fumbling as his efforts may be, we still don't see Donald Trump, New York being a notable exception, getting more than 50 percent in state after state after state. So the not Trump, I won't call them anti-Trump, but the not-Trump vote is still majority. So they have every reason to try to make that will of the people sort of live politically.

[20:20:37] COOPER: Mark, can you see it?

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: I see that they are in deep trouble and they are both mathematically eliminated from the race. And this was their only shot in, you know, to catch at this point as well. I mean, the bottom line is that this came too late. That they could have had Marco Rubio in it. We discussed this for months now. They could have had Marco Rubio. And if they could have kept him in the race, they could have divided the pie up even more and Donald Trump wouldn't never gotten to 1237. The fight would go to the floor. We would have seen what happened. Marco Rubio decided to get out. And here is where we are right now. I mean, the fact of the matter is, at no other time do I think, and certainly in the past few weeks, have we seen Trump as strong as he is right now after New York, heading into these five states tomorrow.

HAM: And one more thing about Trump. No one owes him a nomination. Has to get to 1237. And I know that it helps him to act like someone owes him a nomination, but these guys can work together to try to foil that on behalf of the sometimes 60 percent who do not want Trump to be the nominee. And they are going to do that. And it is funny the argument for him to say don't use the rules in your favor when the entire rationale for the business is I use the rules from the government to get what I need. And that is OK.

COOPER: Ted Cruz is sort of selling this publicly as well, John Kasich has decided to pull out of Indiana to allow a head to head matchup, which is sort of, I mean, that is one way of looking at it.

HOOVER: It is insane Cruz spin because Cruz is kryptonite in the northeast. Nobody likes Cruz in the northeast. Northeast Republicans has been totally eviscerated from the Republican Party. And Cruz is just going to demonstrate that he is going to be annihilated tomorrow. I mean, the only chance of keeping the top on would be a strong Kasich.

DOUTHAT: But in fairness, in fairness - I mean, yes, Cruz, his numbers in the northeast are terrible. But Kasich's numbers in the northeast have not been that great. I mean, Kasich, the whole theory of Kasich is that he would perform, you know, at least get 30 percent or 40 percent in states like Connecticut.

HOOVER: Why this alliance actually on this unraveling.

COOPER: Yes, Jeffrey. Go ahead.

LORD: Anderson, we talked before about our colleague, Michael Smerconish, what I called the Smerconish principle, in which he said months ago that the human ego is involved here. And these people are all going to point fingers at one another and say no, you get out, no, you get out. That's exactly what's happening. Now we are down to two left in Ted Cruz and John Kasich. And they're essentially pointing the fingers in their own fashion at the other guy waiting for him to get out. And it is not going to happen.

DOUTHAT: But in fairness, in fairness to Cruz, John Kasich won one - I mean, isn't this one of Trump's new nicknames for him, one for 38 John. I mean, yes, they're both pointing their fingers at him, but Kasich is in a slightly more ridiculous position.

HAM: Well, luckily, Trump has no ego, so that won't be in play at all.

HOOVER: I mean, you can't be the only one who has been taking on Donald Trump, the only guy who incredibly take on Donald Trump if you are going to be third in the entire northeast. The fundamental weakness of --

DOUTHAT: Yes. I mean, the northeast is not territory that, you know, Republican nominee is likely to contest in the fall.

COOPER: I mean, Mark, do you think if this had been done earlier --?

LORD: That shouldn't be the case, though.

PRESTON: No doubt. If this would done earlier, Donald Trump wouldn't get to 1237, had they put in more people to divide the pie then they would have been successful. There is no question. Even Marco Rubio losing in Florida.

DOUTHAT: I totally disagree with that. I think if you look at Wisconsin, right, if you rerun Wisconsin with Marco Rubio in the race, you can imagine a scenario where - I mean, Trump's vote is solid at 35 percent state after state after state, and he won states like Missouri that he would have lost if Rubio has been out of the race. There was a whole series of border south, and Midwestern states where a three man race would be worse for Trump than the four or five man race he would have had. So I'm not sure if you done this earlier, you could have had Trump win Wisconsin with 36 percent of the vote or something, and then we would really be guaranteed a Trump nomination.

PRESTON: Look, this is what I find interesting about Trump. Specifically hearing from Republicans, they say he is not a majority candidate, OK. That he is the weakest frontrunner. Both true, both true. But he has also won in the south, he has also won a little bit in the west, and he is going to win in the northeast tomorrow. So it is an interesting parallel that we are talking right now. But somebody who is not majority frontrunner but is winning around the country in these Republicans primaries.

COOPER: It is interesting, though, I mean, I think it was Cruz today in Indiana who said, I want to get that quote right, he said the alliance with Kasich is quote "entirely about the will of the people." Does that make sense to you? Will of the people, who the people actually vote for?

LOUIS: It is the will of the people, but it is also, you know, an argument again they haven't been very good about making consistently, which is that, as we just heard from the interviews, sort of man on the street, the reality is you want people to care not just about the candidate, Kasich or Cruz, but you want people to care about the party. Argument kind of the argument that they are making.

The not Trump argument is he is going to be disastrous for the party. That has all kinds of implications further down the ticket for the meaning of the party as a whole, as party activist, you should care about it. They are making a kind of sophisticated argument. The people that you just interviewed who wait for ten hours to see Donald Trump, they don't really seem to care very much about that, and haven't necessarily even thought through, you know, should the candidate, should the nominee of the Republican Party be acting better or worse than a six-year-old. So, you know, until the candidates who are part of this alliance start making that case, I think they are going to have one frustration after another.

[20:25:53] COOPER: Jeffrey Lord, I mean, earlier today senator Cruz's campaign threw out Carly Fiorina's name as possible VP. What do you think the strategy is behind that? I mean, why raise that now? Why float that now?

LORD: Yes. I mean I really do think that they are desperate and they are doing everything. I mean, I'm not to minimize Carly Fiorina. Had she done better in this process, I think she might have been a reasonable choice for anybody who emerged as the nominee. But the fact of the matter is she didn't really do very well here. And one of the things a nominee is looking for is somebody who has been able to carry states, and you know, who has been able to demonstrate an ability to win. And at this point, frankly, that means Ted Cruz, as unlikely as I think it will be at this point or governor Kasich who won Ohio even. But somebody who hasn't been able to win is not going to be very high up the scale on a potential vice presidential list.

COOPER: Yes. We should also point out Donald Trump has said what he would look for a vice president, somebody with Washington experience who can help him work with Congress.

LORD: Exactly. His opposite.

COOPER: Right.

Just ahead, Governor John Kasich joins me live. I will ask him why he decided to team up with his rival, Ted Cruz, and how that new alliance is actually going to work in the weeks ahead. He sends some mixed messages in the campaign trail. I'll ask him about that next.


[20:31:03] COOPER: By cutting an unexpected deal and teaming up against Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and John Kasich have given this primary race another roller coaster turn. The deal was first described as Cruz conceding Oregon and New Mexico and Kasich conceding Indiana to Cruz allow in the both to focus resources on state where they had that better chance.

Today though Governor Kasich seemed to paint a different picture.


GOV. JOHN KASICH, (R-OH) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't see this as any big deal, other than that fact I'm not going to spend resources in Indiana, he's not going to spend in other places. So what? What's the big deal? I've never told them not to vote for me, they ought vote for me. So I'm not over their campaigning and spending resources, we have limited resources.


COOPER: Governor Kasich joins me from McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania where he is campaigning this Super Tuesday. Governor, thanks for being with us.

So today Ted Cruz said you decided to pull out of Indiana in order to give him a head to head contest with Donald Trump. Is that how you characterize this deal?

KASICH: Yeah well, since I'm not there campaigning, Anderson, it's clearly what's happened. You know, I don't tell voters what to do, it's up to them. But look, you always husband your resources in a campaign, and, you know, they want a husband, resources in certain places, and we want to husband ours.

You know, you don't have all of the money in the world, so you have to make sure you spend it where it makes the most sense, that's part of the reason I left Wisconsin and didn't spend a bunch of money up there. So, we're pleased with this agreement, we'll just go forward. And it is all designed to stop Hillary Clinton.

COOPER: Well, before that, you got to stop Donald Trump, I mean to the people of Indiana right now, just so I'm clear, should they not vote for you when they go to the polls if they support you? Because your campaign coach there said you're asking your supporters to vote for Cruz.

KASICH: Anderson, I am don't -- yeah. I am not -- yes I don't tell voters anything, I'm not there campaigning and it speaks for itself.

COOPER: Well then how much impact will this actually have? I mean if you really wanted to make sure Trump is denied the most delegates, shouldn't you instruct your supporters to vote for Cruz?

KASICH: Anderson, we can run our campaign the way we want to. When you run for president, you can run yours the way you want to. In all seriousness, what I said stands. I'm not in Indiana, I'm not campaigning.

And so, you know, I also don't run around telling voters what to do. But clearly at this point, you know, there are people there that are not going to see our resources being spent there for a reason, we want to husband our resources for other places, the same way that the Cruz that people want to do that as well.

You know, I just don't see this as that big of a deal. I mean I know it is like a bombshell to everybody, and I heard what you said in this race, everything is always unchanging, but look, I'd like to see an open convention, Ted Cruz would like to see an open convention, and I think Trump would not, because he's afraid if he goes to an open convention, he has no chance of winning.

Think about New Hampshire, he beat me in New Hampshire, I finished second. And in recent poll of those who voted in that primary that selected me over Donald Trump. That's called buyer's remorse. So we all want to get to a convention where we can elect the person who has the best chance to beating Hillary Clinton and the best person who can actually be president. No more complicated than that.

COOPER: As you know, Trump is describing this deal right now as weak, pathetic, he's calling it collusion, saying that if you collude in business, they put you in jail. What do you say to that?

KASICH: I really don't care what Donald Trump has to say. I mean the man is full of insults, he has been insulting me all day. I kind of chuckle, I think it's humorous and I don't have any comment about Mr. Trump.

COOPER: This ...

KASICH: Listen, the Trump people are very desperate, they're very fearful that we're going to end up in an open convention. I've been saying it for two months as you know, I have been on AC360, I've been saying all along nobody is going to have enough delegates, we'll get to the convention, and the delegates will look at who they would like to see as president.

Remember, of the 10 Republican contested conventions, seven times the person going in there didn't have the majority of the delegates. It's the way it works.

[20:35:04] COOPER: So as far as you're concerned, what your message is that, this deal with Cruz is purely an economic one, it's about saving resources for where you think you can do best?

KASICH: Well that's what all of us do. I mean, we don't want to go places and spend money in places we can't win. And so the idea that, you know, that I'm going to target those places where I can do best, and where -- he's going to target those places where he can do the best, that's terrific. Well I don't see anything wrong and I don't see anything earth shaking about that. So that's sort of the end of it.

COOPER: To folks in Indiana, you say if they support you, they should vote for you?

KASICH: Anderson we've already covered this ground. I said what I have to say about Indiana.

COOPER: Would -- do you see you doing this more in the future? I mean why just these three states.

KASICH: I don't know, it's up to the teams, you know. Well, I know we want to get to an open convention, and I know we want to beat Hillary Clinton, you know, look, the focus is who can win. If we don't win, we lose the Supreme Court, we lose the United States Senate, we're going to lose races from the courthouse to the statehouse. And we believe that an open convention is the best way for the Republican Party to win and to advance its cause. And for me, I participate in a way where I can apply my resources where I can have the best results. Senator Cruz does the same thing. You know, as Teddy Roosevelt used to say, bully.

COOPER: Just lastly, tomorrow night, what are you looking for? You get five states holding their primaries.

KASICH: I think we're going to do well. We're looking forward to tomorrow. I mean I don't make predictions, but we're going to pick up delegates, you know, and virtually everywhere. I mean Delaware is probably winner take all, I don't know how that's all going to fair, but we are optimistic what going to happen tomorrow night. COOPER: Do you have a state where you think you'll be best?

KASICH: Well, Anderson, anything I predict will be held against me. So we'll wait for tomorrow.

COOPER: All right.

KASICH: And then at the end of the night, I'll have something to say about how we do. I appreciate your interview. I know sometimes not getting, you know, it's may be a little frustrating to you, but, you know, in campaigns you got to be smart about the way you spend your resources. And we do want to stop Hillary, I'll tell you that. Thank you.

COOPER: Governor Kasich, it's always a pleasure. Thank you.

Up next, the Democrats, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders both campaigning in Philadelphia tonight ahead of tomorrow's Super Tuesday vote. One of them is already looking way beyond tomorrow.


[20:41:21] COOPER: Well Democratic candidate is also making a final push before another round of Super Tuesday, voting tomorrow, when a total of 384 delegates will be at stake for them. One of the states voting of course Pennsylvania which explains why both Clinton and Sanders are in Philadelphia tonight.

Secretary Clinton just wrapped up a rally at city hall, she got the support of Philadelphia's mayor, and Bernie Sanders is just down market street holding campaign rally tonight Drexel University, he is hoping Clinton doesn't get a cling sweep tomorrow that he picks up a delegates there, but she's hardly mentioning his name on the campaign trail and already trying to look into November election.

Brianna Keilar has the latest for both campaigns.


BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: On the eve of primaries in five states, Hillary Clinton is taking aim at Donald Trump.

HILLARY CLINTON, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Donald Trump says wages are too high in America and he doesn't support raising minimum wage and I have said come out of those towers, named for yourself and actually talk and listen to people.

KEILAR: Clinton ratcheting up for attacks on the GOP frontrunner at a campaign stop in Delaware.

CLINTON: Don't just fly that big jet in, and land it. Don't make a big speech, and insult everybody you can think of, and then go back get on that big jet and go back to, you know, your country clubhouse in Florida or your penthouse in New York.

KEILAR: She's trying to position herself as the unifying alternative to Trump. Releasing an ad called love and kindness.

CLINTON: America is stronger when we are all supporting one another.

KEILAR: But as Clinton looks to the general election, practically ignoring Bernie Sanders in her stump speech, Sanders is fully engaged in his primary battle. Hitting Clinton in Connecticut today.

BERNIE SANDERS, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Let me take a moment to talk about some of the differences between Secretary Clinton and myself. First thought, I am proud to come before you and tell me I do not have a Super PAC.

KEILAR: Trailing considerably in the pledge delegate count, Sanders pushed back on critics who say he can't catch up to Clinton on CNN's State of the Union.

SANDERS: I think we do have a path to victory, I think we have come a very, very long way in the last year, and we're going to fight for every last vote until the -- until California and the D.C. primary.

KEILAR: As Clinton faces criticism from Sanders, she's getting consideration from an unlikely place. Conservative mega donor, billionaire Charles Koch, he said Sunday it is possible Clinton could be better than the GOP nominee.

CHARLES KOCH, CHAIRMAN KOCH INDUSTRIES: We would have to believe her actions would be quite different than her rhetoric, let me put it that way. Though some of the Republican candidates, before we could support them, we have to believe their actions would be different from the rhetoric we've heard so far.

KEILAR: But Clinton was quick to respond, tweeting, not interested in endorsements from people who denied climate science and try to make it harder for people to vote.

Brianna Keilar, CNN, Philadelphia.


COOPER: Well back to our panel, also joining the conversation, Christine Quinn, a Clinton supporter and president of Women in Need. Also Nomiki Konst, the Sanders supporter and democratic strategist. Christine, you know, it's interesting Sanders saying that he's future support to Clinton is going to be largely based on or at least in part depend on her platform. Is that or wise thing from the same does it sort of telegraph that, to how important the platform is for him and is getting some to changes he would like to see.

CHRISTINE QUINN, CLINTON SUPPORTER: I mean I have no doubt that Senator Sanders is going to support Secretary Clinton, no doubt at all, I mean he doesn't want somebody like Donald Trump or Ted Cruz in the White House to pick the next Supreme Court nominee, he doesn't want someone who's going to moves us backwards on a woman's right to choose. He doesn't want someone who's going to come out against gay marriage and LGBT rights. [20:45:04] But, you know, I have say I have -- in a similar way, I have been in a place at Senator Sanders is in. When you're in a race, a race should worked really hard for and in your head, you know, you're not going to win, but in your heart, you've got to keep fighting, and you're going to keep going and I think what he said today is really just one of those end of a hard fought campaign that isn't going to prevail one of those things you say, and I have no doubt that the end he's going to fully supports the senator -- the secretary, and I have no doubt that his supporters will, you know.

COOPER: Nomiki, how you see this -- well because in some speeches, Sanders is still drawing parallels to Secretary Clinton ...


COOPER: ... and others he is barely mentioning.

KONST: Well, let's not forget he's won eight of the last 10 primary and caucuses. So as much as we want to look at New York as a major win, she only picked up 33 pledge delegates and both of them need to get to that 2,384 pledge delegate mark.

Superdelegates don't count until a convention to the second and third ballot, that's just the rules of the DNC. So what Hillary Clinton is trying to do in her campaign, the secretary is trying to create the psychological messages that she's inevitable. And so that's a great campaign tactic. She listed out a bunch of potential VP nominees.

But the reality is that she hasn't been able to budge that 250 difference in pledge delegates over the past two and a half months and her momentum had shifted. Now she could win the next five states and she still won't get to that pledge delegate mark, because we have California coming up and that's 475 pledge delegates and they're tied in California.

So Bernie Sanders and his supporters are planning to push it out as far as possible, to the convention floor, where he might, I mean it might very well come down to superdelegates and that's where you bring up the platform.

COOPER: Mark, do you see the map?

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: I mean listen, it's a very narrow path right now if anything. He would need for Hillary Clinton's campaign to absolutely implode or for something to happen to her. For Bernie Sanders right now though, I think it is all about gracefully getting out of the race but doing so by standing by his convictions, because he does have a place to go. He can go back to the U.S. Senate. It is extremely powerful. But he needs to go back and make sure he continues to have this powerful liberal backing behind him, and he doesn't see that control to Elizabeth Warren who is just waiting in the wings, and who was the leader so to speak for the past couple years of this movement that Bernie Sanders came in and basically took over.

COOPER: And Errol ... QUINN: But last thing he wants is to go back to the United States Senate with a Republican in the White House and the last, last thing he wants is to go back there in any way have people able to point a finger and say he helped to facilitate that.

COOPER: It is interesting though Errol yesterday you have Sanders saying the Democratic Party hasn't been fair though.

ERROL LOUIS, POLITICAL ANCHOR NY1: Well that's right, I mean look, this is by the way a complaint that he's made for months now that the establishment has been lined up against him. And he's -- look there's something to that, there are a number of people who didn't like the fact that he is independent. There a lot of people who don't like fact that he hasn't raised money for other Democratic candidates when there's other stuff at stake here besides the White House, namely control of the U.S. Senate and some other races.

And so, yeah, they haven't been terribly helpful to them. The rules were certainly, you know, if you think that to win there only a handful of debates, mostly like on a Sunday afternoon or something like that.


LOUIS: That was pretty much the same strategy that we see Secretary Clinton resorting to now, which to treat him as a nonentity and say to him, if you want to get press, you have to get it yourself we're not going to help you.

COOPER: Nomi, as a Sanders supporter, how important is the platform to you, I mean if he is not the candidate, is that actually really something that is important?

KONST: I think that what Bernie represents is not Bernie, is not the U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, it is the movement of movements. He has several movements from Black Lives Matter to veterans to union members. You they're all coming together on a platform that I think is to reform the Democratic Party.

I mean if we look at it, I just wrote down a list of and since 2008, the Democratic Party has lost 69 House seat 13 Senate seats, 910 state legislator seats, 30 state legislature chambers and 11 governorships. Something not working in the Democratic Party.

And I think what Bernie Sanders is going to do, what he is going to say need to reform the Democratic Party, we need to make it less about finding the best salespeople, because right now, the viability of candidacy for the Democratic Party is how much you can raise money, not how great your ideas are, not or how great as a leader you are not what you represent and that's how we get things done in Washington.

COOPER: Christine ...

QUINN: But, you know, look, I think if you know, there's much talked about the Sanders campaign and I want to be clear, Senator Sanders deserves the tremendous amount of credit for amplifying really important issues, and putting them out front.

But to call this a movement of movements, when you look at who is supporting him and look at the much greater diversity that Secretary Clinton has in her support, I mean by his own admission Senator Sanders said in the debate that he couldn't win in the southern part of the country. I mean it's hard to call it a movement of movements when there is a lacking in diversity, and even among younger voters where he is doing better, no question. In New York, she won 25 to 29 ...

KONST: Well it is a close primary. But you have to keep in mind, under 50 ...

QUINN: But this is the Democratic primary.

KONST: ... under 50.

QUINN: This is the Democratic primary.

COOPER: OK, let me know we're going to go.

KONST: Well, we're losing 10 percent of our Democratic Party every year to independents. And those under the age 50 are primarily independents. He wins every single demographic under the age of 45 ...

[20:50:07] QUINN: You cannot 25 to 29.


COOPER: I thank our panel. Coming up, remember Prince's song, we're going to hear some pointing musical tributes over the weekend including Bruce Springsteen and "Purple Rain" and more politics in the next hour as well.


COOPER: Well there's a song in your heart right now, good chances there's a -- all right it's a Prince song and the three days after his death, nearly 600,000 Prince album and 2.3 million songs of his songs were sold. Could be weeks before results of Friday's autopsy are made public. A new details are emerging about his final days and every day people as well as Prince's fellow music legends continued to remember him in song. Ryan Young reports.


RYAN YOUNG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The boss honoring Prince this weekend. Bruce Springsteen just one of many artists and performers who paid tribute to Prince since his death, while fans flock to his home in droves. Inside Paisley Park, there was a gathering of those closest to him.

SHEILA E., ATTENDED PRIVATE PRINCE MEMORIAL: It was very somber, it was sad. And that's what was challenging yesterday, listening to his music at a very low soft volume and the room very, you know, low in light and everyone just taking a moment, just sitting there, just kind of going wow, you know, disbelief. I don't know that he really knew how he touched almost everyone in this world.

YOUNG: Amid the memorials. We're getting new information about the days leading up to the icon's death.

[20:55:02] Newly released audio recordings from a airport tower in Moline Illinois, cachet (ph) Air Traffic Control Communication as pilots make an emergency landing in order to rush Prince to the hospital. It happened just this past Friday after his last show in Atlanta.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What's the nature of the emergency? What's the nature of the medical condition?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: An unresponsive passenger.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: JetSpeed 990, was it a male or female passenger?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's a male passenger.

YOUNG: But just a day later, Prince have fairly felt well enough to visit his favorite music store.

AARON MEREMING, ELECTRIC FETUS CO-OWNER: He showed up on record store day, which was this past Saturday, which he gave us a lot of love in the morning with a great tweet. He seemed fine and I'm no, you know, doctor or judge of character or whatever, but, you know, he seemed perfectly fine. I would have never in a million years predicted or guessed that he's under the weather, in bad health or whatever. And still just like surreal.

YOUNG: Prince would have a party that night, reassuring fans he was feeling fine. But just five days later he was found dead in his elevator at Paisley Park.


COOPER: And Ryan Young joins me now. What about plans to memorialize Prince, what have you learned?

YOUNG: I mean that's the big conversation right now. We've been hearing about a musical tribute that should happen in the next few months. But no one has a details there yet. And I tell you Anderson, a lot of people are waiting to see what happens next, especially with Paisley Park behind me. Some people hope it turns into Graceland like memorial to the singer.

COOPER: All right Ryan Young, Ryan thanks.

Up next, another hour of "360", including the latest on dealing and to stopping Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, John Kasich joining forces. Will it work? What is Trump have to say about.