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Hayden Weight in on Trump's Campaign; Historian's Damning Indictment of Trump; Speaking the Same Language. Aired 2-2:30p ET
Aired July 19, 2016 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[14:00:15] CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN HOST: Tonight, from the Republican National Convention, where the theme now turns from "Making America Safe
Again," to "Making it Work again." But all anyone is talking about now is plagiarism and Melania Trump's speech.
Coming up, what folk make of it all.
Plus, former CIA director, Mike Hayden, on security and the state of this union.
And historian and filmmaker, Ken Burns, speaking out, like he says, never before.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KEN BURNS, HISTORIAN, FILMMAKER: It's very, very clear that Donald Trump is the least-qualified person who has ever run for national office. In
fact, a great danger.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Good evening, everyone. And welcome to the program. I'm Christiane Amanpour on day two of the Republican convention in Ohio.
It's a convention that Donald Trump promised would be like none other, and he wasn't wrong.
His theatrical grand entrance onto the stage last night to the Queen hit "We are the Champions" didn't go down so well with the band, which later
tweeted that the, quote, "Unauthorized use of their song on the Republican convention was against their wishes."
But the full-scale political controversy here is about that speech. The one his wife, Melania, delivered. Within minutes, it faced a barrage of
online evidence that parts were almost identical to Michelle Obama's back in 2008.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHELLE OBAMA, FIRST LADY OF THE UNITED STATES: Barack and I were raised with so many of the same values.
MELANIA TRUMP, DONALD TRUMP'S WIFE: From my young age, my parents impressed on me the values.
MICHELLE OBAMA: You work hard for what you want in life.
MELANIA TRUMP: That you work hard for what you want in life.
MICHELLE OBAMA: That your word is your bond, that you do what you say you're going to do.
MELANIA TRUMP: That your word is your bond. And you do what you say and keep your promise.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: But outside the center, I went out and I found the Trump crowds were having none of it.
AMANPOUR (on-camera): So Melania Trump is in a lot of trouble today. The Trump campaign is in trouble, because of the plagiarism, the very
similarities between Melania's speech and Michelle Obama's speech.
How do you feel about that?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think that's a bunch of hogwash. Whether it is or whether it isn't, it has no bearing as to the capability of Donald Trump
running this country.
AMANPOUR: Do you recognize the angry, pessimistic, down in the dumps America that is being shown to the world on that stage?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I understand the angry optimistic America.
AMANPOUR: Because, of course, Ronald Reagan back in the '80s was all about mourning in America and optimism --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We don't have Reagan running today. He has been my only rational president since I started voting 50 years ago. We don't have
Ronald Reagan. We have Donald Trump.
AMANPOUR: So are you nonetheless going to vote for Donald Trump?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 100 percent.
AMANPOUR: What do you think about the controversy over Melania's speech? I mean, of all the speeches not to have been properly vetted, what does
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't think that has anything to do with this. Again, I think it's -- it's progressive media trying to drum up just
something on this woman. The reality is, she gave an amazing speech last night. She backs her husband. She's going to do the right thing. She'll
be a beautiful first lady. And, you know, I thought she did fantastic.
AMANPOUR: So you say progressive media, and I realize that's your thing and that's a lot of people's thing. But in this case, it's the Republican
Party, who is very divided and disunited over Donald Trump.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is not a division. He systematically destroyed 16 career politicians, who spent hundreds of millions of dollars going at
him. And he did that, because he's got a message. He's saying things that most Americans are just thinking. And they're now beginning to speak their
voice. And I'm one of them.
AMANPOUR: So with that speech still resonating and with Melania herself left out to dry, no campaign heads rolling over the clearly unvetted
speech. Critics and some in the Republican Party are saying today that this is just one more indication that the Trump campaign is not ready for
I put that and other serious national security issues to General Michael Hayden, the former CIA director under President George W. Bush.
AMANPOUR (on-camera): General Hayden, welcome to the program.
MICHAEL HAYDEN, RETIRED U.S. AIR FORCE GENERAL: Thank you.
[14:05:00] AMANPOUR: So here we are. This is day two, but day two is consumed by what many are calling the Trump campaign not being ready for
primetime. In the aftermath of this plagiarism of Melania from Michelle's convention speech.
Just give me your analysis on --
HAYDEN: On that?
HAYDEN: Well, look --
AMANPOUR: On the ready for primetime.
HAYDEN: It's not in my lane, all right? But it might suggest the lack of a full-pledged staff. I mean, when we -- we would go over talking points
for the president. Admittedly, the serving president, all right? I mean, we had a large army of folks going through them. Not to clean them up, but
just to make sure we could stand by what the president or the vice president was prepared to say.
AMANPOUR: So it may not be in your lane, but it does go to, as you say, staffing, to judgment, to competence and to being able to deal with some
very, very difficult challenges in your lane, which is national security and foreign policy.
How do you think this president, if he were to be president, would stack up versus Hillary Clinton on such important matters as ISIS, dealing with
Russia, dealing with the crisis in Turkey, et cetera?
HAYDEN: Secretary Clinton has got an awful lot more real-world experience in that lane than Mr. Trump does. Beyond that, Mr. Trump has said an awful
lot of things in the campaign that, frankly, Christiane, I can't create parallax. They're coming like stray electrons, points of light. But I
can't get them back to a unifying principle.
I get a tone, OK. I get a tone that's angry and isolationist. And unilateral. And perhaps oversimplifying some really complex problems. But
I just can't find the unifying foreign policy principle behind all the statements that were made.
AMANPOUR: Well, that's quite an indictment, general. And you have been appointed, you were head of the CIA under Republican administration, George
HAYDEN: But appointed to NSA by a Democrat administration.
AMANPOUR: Well, there you go. OK, so bipartisan, so to speak.
Let me ask you about that sort of point of focus when it comes to fighting ISIS. I ask you, because Donald Trump was asked on "60 Minutes."
Again, he said we're going to declare war on ISIS, and then he said, well no, we're not going to put troops on the ground. We're just going to have
I mean, my point is, did you hear anything that would be any different than the current war on ISIS and to your mind, how should ISIS be fought?
HAYDEN: So, number one, I didn't hear anything, all right? We're going to be tougher. We're not going to stupid. We're going to be smarter. What's
that mean? We're going to win. We're going to win quickly and we're not going to put troops on the ground.
I can't make those thoughts comport into a single meaningful paragraph.
AMANPOUR: It doesn't add up.
HAYDEN: No, it doesn't add up at all. So I would want to know more before I criticized in fine print. But back to the tone question, all right. It
oversimplifies a very complex problem.
Look, Christiane, I've been involved in war in terror for 10 years in government, all right? If we could kill our way out of this problem, which
seems to be the game plan here, if we could kill our way out of this problem, we would have been done 14 years ago. It's far more complicated
than that. We should not oversimplify such a difficult issue.
Look, I've got a lot of issues with current policy. I have been consistently saying we've been late, we've been light, we've been
overregulated, we've been under-resourced. We need to do a lot more. But I don't get a sense as to what that "lot more"" is out of the candidate's
AMANPOUR: Well, to that point, a former presidential candidate and the former mayor of New York, a law and order guy, Rudy Giuliani, was on stage
last night, saying that this is the problem.
This is what he said last night, and I'll have you react to it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER NEW YORK CITY MAYOR: We must not be afraid to define our enemy. It is Islamic extremist terrorism!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: OK. So red meat for the crowd, obviously.
HAYDEN: Right. But also true.
HAYDEN: Yes. I agree with that. This is about Islam. Now let me be very clear. It's not about all of Islam. And it's certainly not about all
Muslims. But what we have, Christiane, is a great civil war going on inside one of the world's great monotheisms. And we have to understand
that, and appreciate that.
AMANPOUR: I think people in America understand that, and so do the press. I think what Giuliani was criticizing was President Obama not using radical
Islam or radical Jihadist.
HAYDEN: Yes. His refusal to do that, frankly, is a bit silly, all right? It is about Islam. They are motivated by a particular violent minority
view, again, of one of the world's great monotheisms.
If they're just violent extremists, Christiane, they're kind of just like lightning bolts out there. And by the way, if they're just violent
extremists without any roots back here to something that unifies their vision, if they're just that, then all your -- all you have to do is to
kill them. One by one. You don't get back to the root causes.
Look, we are very good at killing those people who are already convinced they want to come kill you, me and our families. We are horrible about
affecting the production rate of those kinds of people in one, three or five years.
And one of the reasons, I think, we are so ill-suited to that is that we haven't had the candid conversation among ourselves as to what this is all
[14:10:30] AMANPOUR: So candid conversations, or any conversation has been coming from the stage. And for instance, last night, the Iowa Senator,
Joni Ernst, basically declared that ISIS is spreading, quote, "Terrorists from ISIS are in everyone one of our 50 states."
Well, CNN fact checked that, and it's not true.
How does that kind of rhetoric complicate the real issue?
HAYDEN: I think what the senator was referring to was the fact that there are FBI investigations. So, OK, so it's trading a bit more than the facts
would indicate. But the broader truth is there. We do have this great danger from folks inside our country. Now, again, it's not about all
Muslims, it's not about all of Islam. But we do have these isolated cases.
AMANPOUR: You talked about tone. Do you recognize the tone coming from this particular campaign, which is about America on its knees, which is
about America as a third world state, which is about America that gets the wool pulled over its eyes from China to Russia to points in between, which
is about America with a crumbling economy.
Is that kind of pessimism the America you recognize?
HAYDEN: So, count me in those two-thirds of the American people who say we're on the wrong track. That said, the correction for being on the wrong
track is not anger, vilification, isolationism, and all the other things we seem to see emanating from the campaign. We're better than that.
I fear -- you want a summary statement? America is in crisis. We've had two campaigns, one in this party, one in the other, that I described as a
primal scream, all right? You can't govern with a primal scream, however. You can't --
AMANPOUR: You're talking Trump/Sanders.
HAYDEN: I am. All right. And I fear that this campaign in particular has appealed to the darker angels of our nature, rather than the better angels.
And we can only get out of this problem by going to the better angels.
AMANPOUR: General Hayden, thank you very much indeed for joining us.
HAYDEN: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: And with that stark warning, next, when we come back, we look to the lessons of history, with one of the most important and prolific
historical filmmakers right here in the United States. His passionate indictment on this race, after this.
AMANPOUR: Welcome back to the program.
Now, quote, "Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it." The other words and the warning of philosopher George Santayana.
Now a group of the most distinguished American historian are breaking with their traditional neutrality and they are banding together to go public,
warning about the rise of the Donald Trump phenomenon.
Amongst them, the nation's most popular documentarian, Ken Burns. Before heading here from London, I asked him what he would say to the world and to
Americans about the Trump phenomenon as a white identity political backlash sweeps the west.
AMANPOUR (on-camera): Ken Burns, welcome to the program.
BURNS: Thank you for having me, Christiane.
AMANPOUR: You have been very vocal about the dangers that lie ahead from a historian's perspective. Let me play a little bit of your commencement
address to the Stanford graduating class.
You don't mention Trump by name, but you mention him in all the aspects that you're talking about. This is what you said, or this is some of what
you told the students.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[14:15:08] BURNS: A person who easily lies, creating an environment where the truth doesn't seem to matter, who has never demonstrated any interest
in anyone or anything but himself and his own enrichment. And asking this man to assume the highest office in the land would be like asking a newly
minted car driver to fly a 747.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: You talk about lies and elsewhere in your commencement address, you say the sense of commonwealth of shared sacrifice of trust, so much
part of American life, is eroding fast. Spurred along and amplified by an amoral Internet that permits a lie to circle the globe three times before
the truth can get started.
Is that how he has managed to put his candidacy across so successfully, because of the way he is engaging with people via the Internet?
BURNS: Things that would occupy weeks of our conversation now are spoken and then forgotten in a day or so. And what happens is, we begin to accrue
a sense that the truth doesn't matter anymore. We don't think that.
We're absolutely certain we know what the truth is. But when you hear somebody lie over and over again about almost every aspect of this
campaign, it's really hard to keep up with it. And I think that's where the historians are taking a big time-out and saying, look, we have to look
A person who was a supporter of Hillary Clinton, a donator to Hillary Clinton's campaigns in the past and has been pro-choice and is suddenly
pro-life and won't release his actual wealth, that we don't know whether he has paid taxes or not, whether he's given to charitable contributions is
all over the map on everything, and yet the sheer spectacle of him overwhelms the normal kind of due diligence that we must in a democratic
society apply to our candidates.
There was a moment in Franklin Roosevelt's early in his first time, in the midst of the depression when some aides said to him, you know, you're
either going to go down as the worst president or the best president.
He said, if I don't succeed, I'm going to be the last president. And I think there's an anxiety among those of us who understand the sort of in
and out of American history. How incredibly perilous our situation is right now.
AMANPOUR: You have said the five black teenagers who show that Trump will to more harm than good with race relations. And by that you're referring
to the film that you did called "The Central Park Five."
It's a story that I covered when I was in New York. These five blacks and a Hispanic boy who were arrested, jailed, for a crime they didn't commit.
BURNS: And Donald Trump took out full-page ads in all of the "New York" dailies asking for the return of the death penalty, and essentially saying
that these innocent 14-year-old children, 15-year-old children, a developmentally-challenged 16-year-old child, should be put to death.
And that was -- and you're in our film, Christiane, reporting on this. And while the laws of New York state would have forbidden the execution of
these children. The fact that he would play that race card so blatantly and has continued to do that throughout his life.
It is the tactic of the demagogue to make enemies of the other. And it offers a kind of temporary assurance to those people who are susceptible to
these messages. But in the long run, it's actually those people who will be voting against their self interests if they vote for Trump that will
suffer the most.
As I said at Stanford of governance. It's not sexy. It doesn't make for lead stories the way the bombast always does. If we choose our head
instead of this kind of gut instinct to go against others, we'll be saved.
If we follow the latter, we'll be in great danger. The United States' economy is actually right now doing very, very well, and can offer a
bulwark for the rest of the world.
I have never in my life come forward and spoken as I have. All of my films have been consciously neutral. But there comes a time when you have to
say, we have to wake up. This could be like Germany in the early '30s, or Italy in the early '30s and the world cannot afford that again.
AMANPOUR: Well, you've talked about the early '30s in Germany and Spain, and your new film is called "Defying the Nazis."
I mean, it's an amazing time to be doing this film.
BURNS: If you go back and look at Hitler's rise, and I'm not in any way equating Donald Trump with Adolf Hitler. But he does have a kind of proto-
fascistic aspect to the way he handles it. But Hitler's rise, he would say some outrageous things and expect to sort of -- to have his sails trimmed
and they never were.
[14:20:00] And so he would say it again. He doubled down. He tripled down on it. And what we're having is we cannot -- I mean, if Edward R. Murrow
were alive today, he would have expose this naked emperor a long time ago.
And David McCullough was speaking to him the other day. The imminent historian and he was just recalling the army McCarthy hearings when the
army's Attorney Joseph Welch said, have you finally no sense of decency, no sense of shame.
AMANPOUR: Well, you know, you mentioned Joseph McCarthy.
Is it significant to you that Donald Trump's most important mentor was Roy Cohn, the lawyer who was Joseph McCarthy's lawyer?
BURNS: Roy Cohn was his mentor, Donald Trump's mentor. Donald Trump is a product of that -- the least, the lowest common denominators. Not the
better angels of our nature. This is not a liberal or conservative Republican, or Democratic red state or blue state issue. This is an
We as an American people reject this kind of thing. And I think when we have a responsible media that can report on this and has historical
perspective and context, we permit our citizenry to understand what Alexander Hamilton said about demagogues.
What Roy Cohn was doing with McCarthy and what he apparently taught his pupil, Donald Trump, very well.
AMANPOUR: But is there something about people's needs that he has tapped into that establishment politicians are simply not tapping into, ignoring?
BURNS: Yes. It's called fear, Christiane. It's called fear. And when you appeal to people's fear, if you have convinced them through months and
months of rhetoric that the United States' economy is going to hell in a hand basket, and it's not. It's had, you know, 73, 4 months of job growth.
If you convince them that it's bad, that every person of color or every immigrant is coming over, has criminality on their mind, it is, in fact,
indicative of the kind of position we have put ourselves in. And we are obligated as Americans to sort of say, stop. No. This will not stand.
We understand that there are tough times and complexity can only be met with thoughtful and complex solutions. It doesn't come from the easy
solutions. It only works that way on reality television. You only get to say on reality television, you're fired, and that's it, and you can take
care of it.
But when we talk about the flaws of Donald Trump, we are talking about orders of magnitude far beyond even the perfidy of say a Richard Nixon.
And so it is just from someone humble opinion, not even as a Democrat, because I keep that politics out of my day-to-day work, but as an American
citizen who loves his country, it is time to just say no.
AMANPOUR: Ken Burns, thank you very much indeed.
BURNS: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: Stark words indeed to hear right here at the Republican National Convention.
And when we come back, plagiarism in politics. It is not just a controversy engulfing Melania Trump. We imagine the kind of peril
derailing many of presidential bandwagon. That's next.
AMANPOUR: And finally tonight, imagine a world taking the words right out of your mouth. After a night of speakers thundering about ISIS haunting
every American state, and demanding to lock up Hillary Clinton, who knew the real sound and fury from opening day would come from the one speech
meant to be positive, to humanize the candidate, and cast him as a competent visionary. That was Melania Trump's role.
[14:25:00] Instead, she is under assault for a speech that she says she wrote almost all by herself. But, in fact, contains strong similarities to
Michelle Obama's convention speech in 2008. Trump campaign denies that it was plagiarized.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PAUL MANAFORT, TRUMP CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN: Certainly, there's the feeling on her part that she did it, you know -- that what she did was use words that
are common words.
To expect her to -- to think that she would do something like that, knowing how scrutinized her speech was going to be last night, is just really
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: As one observer here said, plagiarism is plagiarism, whether intentional or accidental. Trump challengers, Rand Paul and Ben Carson
have both been forced to apologize for using other people's words extensively.
And in 1988, Joe Biden had to abandon his presidential bid after ripping off the British Labor Leader, Neil Kinnock, tripping off the tongue and
into the history books. Now it's a reminder for all of us to mind our Ps and Qs at all times. That's it for our program tonight.
Remember, you can always listen to our podcast, see us online at Amanpour.com and follow me on Facebook and Twitter. Thanks for watching
and goodbye for now from Cleveland, Ohio.