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Nastiest Campaign In History?; War On Words; Trump And Clinton War Of Words; Kaine Charges Trump Pushes KKK Values; New Poll: Clinton Leads Trump; Trump's "Undercover" Voters?; CNN's Smerconish Saturdays 9A/6P ET; Trump's Mixed Signals; Trump's Mixed Signals On Immigration; Trump Web Ad Targets Clinton On "Super Predators"; Trump To CNN: Standing By Charge Clinton Is A "Bigot"; What Voters Think Of Trump's Mixed Message; Trump Struggles To Stay On Message Over Immigration; Clinton: Trump Campaign Built On "Prejudice". Aired 9-10p ET
Aired August 26, 2016 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[21:00:00] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Well, that does it for us. Thanks for watching.
"CNN Tonight" with Don Lemon starts now.
DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: What may be a new low in one of the nastiest campaigns in American history?
This is "CNN Tonight". I'm Don Lemon.
He calls her a bigot. She says his real message may be make America hate again. But Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are not done yet.
Trump tweeting today, "How quickly people forget that Crooked Hillary called African-American youth superpredators. Has she apologized?"
And Clinton's running mate, Tim Kaine going on the attack today, charging Trump embraces what he calls Ku Klux Klan values. The RNC calling that remark "reprehensible."
Here to discuss all of this, Michael Smerconish, the anchor of CNN's "Smerconish" and Larry Sabato, director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia. Good evening.
Boy, oh, boy. What a campaign season this is?
Mr. Smerconish, you first. Clinton and Trump are both accusing one another of racism. Trump doubling down on calling Hillary Clinton a bigot and the Clinton campaign tying Donald Trump to the KKK.
Tim Kaine on the campaign trail today. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIM KAINE, (D) VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: He has supporters like David Duke connected with the Ku Klux Klan who are going around and saying Donald Trump is their candidate because Donald Trump is pushing their values. Ku Klux Klan values, David Duke values, Donald Trump values are not American values. They're not our values. Donald Trump was a main guy behind the scurrilous and I would say bigoted notion that President Obama wasn't even born in this country, and Donald Trump has continued to push that irresponsible falsehood from all the way up to now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Truly a war on words here, Michael. Who's winning?
MICHAEL SMERCONISH, CNN'S "SMERCONISH" HOST: Both of them are probably losing in this regard.
Let me start with Tim Kaine. I think the lesson from the primary is that when you stoop to Trump's level, you come out with mud all over you. Just ask Marco Rubio because when he tried to engage Trump at that basis, I think he came out of it a net loser.
With regard to referring to Hillary as a bigot, bigot, Don, that's the bomb. That's the "R" word. That's calling a racist. And you better be able to back it up. And when Anderson pressed Donald Trump on that issue just within the last 48 hours, Trump had nothing to say. And in the end he said, well, you know, maybe it's her laziness. Well, lazy is not a synonym for bigot.
But I don't like seeing Kaine respond in kind. I think they're both losing at that level.
LEMON: You would say take the high road here. So but -- my question is, when you talked about Donald Trump and bigot and saying, you know, you have to back it up, has he brought this on himself in part?
SMERCONISH: Well, he brought it on himself I think because of going the Birther route. Because in my opinion, playing that Birther card for as long as he did was really an appeal to say Barack Obama is an other. He's not one of us. He's not an American. You know, he's one of them in the context of the war on terror. He's not one of us. And I thought that was really an appeal in the worst instinct.
LEMON: His new campaign manager, Donald Trump's campaign manager, made a clear -- made it clear that Trump uses his own words. Bigot was a prepared remark Wednesday night. It was in the teleprompter. Was this an attempt by Trump you think to upstage her before her big speech yesterday, sort of a, you know, a prebuttal?
SMERCONISH: I think that it probably was. He was knowledgeable of the fact that she was going to make a statement that was going to deal with racial issues and he wanted to get out ahead of the curve on it. I just think that he went too far. And there's this schizophrenia within the Trump campaign of on one hand, trying to stoke the base and keep people fired up and then every once in awhile he'll say something that is seemingly out of character which you say well, wow, was that the pivot that I just missed toward the general election. But there's this inherent inconsistency between the two and he's really got to bring some clarity. I mean it's Labor Day next weekend. He's got to bring some clarity as to what this campaign is all about. We have been paying attention, we are political junkies. There's a significant part of the country, though, that's going to begin to tune in just come next weekend and thereafter.
LEMON: Before I move on to Larry here, any day not talking about the Clinton Foundation or e-mail scandal, is that a win for her?
SMERCONISH: Probably. You know, I think that this week was really a revelatory week with regard to that A.P. report. I know that many people want to pick it apart. I happened to think that it drew enough pieces of the puzzle together to raise some serious questions about whether access was provided to foreign individuals who could not write a check to an American campaign, who nevertheless wanted to curry favor with the Clintons. So I think it's a very real issue.
LEMON: Larry, let's talk numbers here because you're so good at it. You're a pro. A new national poll out today showing Clinton holding her post convention bounce with a seven point lead in a four way match-up and a 10-point lead in a two way match-up.
[21:05:01] What do you think of these numbers, Larry?
LARRY SABATO, DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR POLITICS, UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA: Well, the numbers change over time but basically, I think it's going to bounce around between the four points that Barack Obama won by in 2012 and the seven points he won by in 2008. The basic alignments that we've seen in the past two present are still present. Hillary Clinton has some pluses that Barack Obama doesn't have. She has some minuses that Barack Obama doesn't have or didn't have in those two campaigns.
I think it is a very good lead for her. I would never say before Labor Day it's absolutely solid but I'll tell you, I hear the concrete setting, if you can hear concrete setting, especially with minority voters, but also with a lot of the rest of the electorate.
LEMON: Yeah. And you can't hear it but there's a time before it sets when you can mark your name in it or write in it and after that it's all done.
I have to ask you, though, I've been wanting to talk to you about this, Larry. There's this notion of the shy or the undercover Trump voter that people are talking about, someone who doesn't want to tell a pollster on the phone that they're supporting Donald Trump. They call it social desirability bias. Tell me more about this. Does this -- because his own campaign manager is saying hey, we're going to, you know, we're getting the people who don't necessarily want to say they're going to vote for Donald Trump in the polling.
SABATO: Believe it or not, I first heard about this in 1968. It wasn't called the shy vote back then but it was about George Wallace, whether people would be honest in talking to interviewers either in person or on telephone. Obviously there was no online polling back in 1968.
Generally speaking, when you have a controversial candidate on the right or the left, the theory goes that there will be a percent or two or three that simply won't want to admit it. Now, they almost never say they're voting for the other candidate. What they say is they're undecided. Is it possible that there's some of that here? Yes. Do I think it's substantial enough to wipe out the very large lead that Hillary Clinton has in the big swing states? No. We borrowed some of this from British politics. It's called the shy Tory vote over there. It seems to have more of an impact in Britain than it does here.
LEMON: What are your thoughts, Michael?
SMERCONISH: I've seen it in black-white elections. I happened to be in California on the night that George Deukmejian upset L.A. Mayor Tom Bradley and many have called it the Bradley effect. I have seen it in racially charged environments.
The reason that I'm dubious in this case, and Larry's a bright guy, he can correct me if I'm wrong, I don't remember this being a factor in primary and caucus season. I don't remember sitting there on CNN on election nights and saying, "Oh, my God, look at Trump, he outpolled where we expected that he would be." So my suspicion at present is that it's a way to keep the Trump supporters in the tent as these polling numbers are coming out and showing a widening gap. They need to rally the troops and make them think that all hope is not lost.
LEMON: Go ahead, Larry.
SABATO: Yes. Michael has good memory, because the so-called Bradley effect, of course, Bradley was an African American candidate for governor. He'd been leading in all the polls and he was upset in his race for governor in the 1980s. And later that same decade, we had Doug Wilder in Virginia who was way ahead in the polls, sometimes by 10, 12, 14 percentage points and he won by, I believe, 6,000 votes out of nearly two million cast. So, yes. On the racial side, it can be there. I don't feel that in this particular case. I don't see any ...
LEMON: Even though race has been discussed so much, it's not black- white but, I mean, still, race has been discussed. That's what they're fighting over right now, you know, so you don't see it?
SABATO: Well, I'll tell you another reason why I don't see it. The American electorate has changed dramatically. African-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, Asian-Americans and other minorities will be 30 percent, 30 percent of the November vote. And because of the things Donald Trump has said and done, and also because of Hillary Clinton's record that they have interpreted as being pro-minority, I think Donald Trump is headed for an all-time low at least in the modern era for Republicans. He'll be lucky, lucky, to get 20 percent of all minorities combined and I think it's going to be closer to 15 percent which means he has to get a massive majority of whites and I don't think that's there for him either.
LEMON: Michael, are your listeners talking about this, especially this so-called shy vote and, you know, whether or not they've made up their mind, black or white or Hispanic or Asian, about Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton? SMERCONISH: It's awfully difficult, Don, to find folks who call my program and say that they're undecided. If I can just echo something that Larry said. Here's the data point I come back to.
[21:09:59] In the '92 race, George Herbert Walker Bush got 59 percent of the white vote. That equated to 426 electoral votes. Mitt Romney in the last cycle got the same percentage, 59 percent of the white vote. It got him 206 electoral votes. What is that tell you? It's a different country. The demographics have shifted. And you can't get elected on white votes alone.
LEMON: And thus this sort of reaching out as, you know, maybe an ill attempt as it is to minority voters. That is why they're doing it. Larry or Michael.
SABATO: Well, I've got one little thing to add that I've learned over the years. It sounds very simple. It sounds obvious. It is amazing how often politicians and campaigns ignore it and it's a simple phrase. You do not get the votes of people you insult.
LEMON: Thank you very much. Have a great weekend. Michael, I'll see you tomorrow on television, OK?
SMERCONISH: Thank you for that.
LEMON: "Smerconish" air Saturday, 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. right here on CNN and I will be watching. I hope you tune in, too.
When we come right back, will Donald Trump's mixed signals on immigration be his Achilles heel?
LEMON: Donald Trump's stance on immigration has been the centerpiece of his campaign since day one, so why the mixed signals now? Here to discuss is Alice Stewart, the former communications director for Ted Cruz. Alice, doing this on a Friday, thank you.
[21:15:02] CNN's political commentator Van Jones, so to Vans, Democratic strategist Maria Cardona and Paris Dennard, who is the -- was the director of Black Outreach for President George W. Bush. I'm so glad to have all of you. This is going to be a great panel.
I'm going to start with Ms. Cardona first. Sarah Palin says Trump's wishy-washy, that's her quote, wishy-washy stance on immigration could erode his support. Is she right? Why is it hard for him to stay on message on this issue you think?
MARIA CARDONA, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, I think first of all because he has -- two things. He has no clue where he stands, where he should stand, I guess I should say, because during the Republican primary, it was the number one issue as to why he won.
What I mean by that is that if you look at all of the primary states except for Wisconsin and New York, the majority, the vast majority of the Trump voters who came out to vote for him in the rest of the primary states did so because of his stance on immigration. And so, he knew that that was the reason, that was what brought him to the dance, right, that was what led him to win the primary.
Going into a general election, I think now he has people like Kellyanne Conway who understand that without at least 44 percent of the Hispanic vote, he has no pathway to 270 electoral votes. But the problem is, he doesn't even understand immigration. I don't think he even cares about immigration. So there's no way for him to formulate a -- something, a proposal that even makes any sense. That even he can say look, I do need to change this because it doesn't make sense.
CARDONA: He tried ...
LEMON: I want to ...
CARDONA: ... but then he would go back on the issue that most of his supporters want to have ...
LEMON: I want to get Alice in. Alice, you said he doesn't -- she doesn't believe that he even cares about this issue of immigration. What do you think of that?
ALICE STEWART, FORMER TED CRUZ COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: Oh, he certainly cares about it. And she's right, this was the cornerstone of his campaign. And just ask him, he'll tell you he's the one that brought immigration to the forefront of the conversation. And every time we would have a debate and he would say I'm going to build a wall and Mexico will pay for it, I'm going to deport all the illegals, everyone said that's not going to happen, it's not possible, and he still won anyway. And Jeb Bush even pushed back on that and Donald Trump criticized Jeb Bush for questioning whether or not he's able to do this.
He got so many people to believe him and his firm stance on immigration and that led to his victory. Even to the point to where Ann Coulter has written a book on "In Trump We Trust" on immigration. Unfortunately, if he goes too far the other way, he's going to betray the trust of those ...
LEMON: So, you agree with Sarah Palin that his wishy-washy stance on immigration could erode his support, Alice?
STEWART: There's a chance that could happen.
STEWART: I mean, this is something they believed in him for his strong stance on this. I do, though, at the same time, he does need to broaden his base. He needs to reach out to a bigger electorate. And he needs to bring in more Hispanics to the fold ...
STEWART: ... in order to win. But he must be careful in how he goes about doing it because it does go against the cornerstone of his campaign.
LEMON: Of his campaign. He started off with immigration. Paris, let me -- where else does he go? I mean, where else do Trump voters go if they say, "Oh, OK, well, you know, he sort of went against what he said on immigration." Are they going to go to Hillary Clinton, no?
PARIS DENNARD, GOP POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: No, absolutely not. Trump supporters like myself understand the fact that Donald ...
LEMON: Will that stop him from maybe being energized enough to you to go to the polls?
DENNARD: No, because the alternative is so severe. We realize that Hillary Clinton is not going to be our friend and not going to support the issues that we need -- that we believe are important. And so, Trump's supporters are going to be with him no matter what. But I don't believe that he is going to have a reversal on his decisions or his position on immigration.
LEMON: OK. Van, listening over the past couple days, similar question to what I asked you last night. You've heard, you know, we've heard a couple of different things over the last couple of days for immigration policy. And I know Donald Trump is set to deliver his big immigration speech within the next two weeks. Do you think we're going to get more details and it's going to be clarified even more? Is he going to stick to the, "OK, they must go," or is he going to say, "Well, we're going to work with them?" What happens?
VAN JONES, CNN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: I have no idea. I think he just -- what they're going to do, they're to take a bunch of statements he's made in the past, they're going to throw them in a sock drawer, they're going to blindfold somebody and they're going to grab them out and put them on a wall and he's going to give the speech. If there's no way ...
LEMON: Because, Van, seriously, does it seem like -- well, what do you think? Well, what do you think? Well, what do you think? And this is where ...
JONES: I mean there's no -- here's reality. He is going to realize there's a difference between leading a rally and leading a country. He -- when he gets up there and it's time to lead a rally, he's brilliant because it doesn't matter what you say at a rally. All you got to do is get that big applause and he loves that. He gets a big dopamine rush off of that.
But when you try to lead a country you have to have a coherent set of ideas. And he himself is admitting he doesn't have one. He goes, "Well, I was wandering around the country and somebody said they thought my ideas were too tough. So now, I'm thinking up new stuff to say."
[21:20:00] This is disqualifying to be president of the PTA, let alone the president of the United States.
LEMON: Even if it's framed as he's listening to the voters and he's listening to what voters ...
JONES: But he should listen -- there were voters talking about this before he ran for office. In fact, the people who listened to voters were people like Jeb Bush who came up with good ideas and he smashed them upside the head.
LEMON: And there were people who were on programs like this, like you, even like Maria, even Alice, who were offering advice at one point, that advice, and were seen as never Trumpers or Trump haters. Van, go on.
JONES: Well, yeah. My only point is simply this. He can't now go and say well, now I'm learning, I'm evolving.
JONES: I'm listening to people. And you might want to listen to the American people before you run for president. You might want to listen to the American people before you start attacking everybody. It turns out some of the ideas that both Democrats and Republicans have had are good ideas. I'm not mad that he now adopts some of these ideas but you've got to then stand for it and say guess what, I was wrong, I apologized, I changed my mind.
JONES: And he never wants to do that.
LEMON: Go ahead, Paris.
DENNARD: There are examples of Hillary Clinton changing her mind or her policy positions evolving.
LEMON: Yes, there are.
DENNARD: And so, I don't think it's fair to say that because Donald Trump may, we -- he haven't had the speech, may be doing that or it seems like he might be doing that is to say he's disqualifying for being president. If that's the case, then Hillary Clinton should be disqualified from running.
LEMON: Has she done it on core issues?
LEMON: And I'm just asking the question. I don't know if she has. I mean, has she done it on a core ...
JONES: It's not the flip-flop.
DENNARD: Traditional marriage.
STEWART: Hey, Don, in terms of an example of a flip-flop on a major issue, think back to 2012 when Barack Obama flipped on traditional marriage and he flipped to gay marriage. He did it back in May. It was quick, swift, decisive and he moved on. And that's what we need to do here. If Donald Trump is going to soften his position on immigration, it would be helpful if they would be quick, swift and decisive on this and move on.
LEMON: That's good advice considering you don't know for over the last couple of days. But, yeah.
CARDONA: Yeah. Here's the difference. When -- both when Hillary Clinton and when President Obama turned to supporting gay marriage, they talked about why. They talked about, yes, talking to voters but more than that ...
LEMON: That's what Alice just said. If you're going to do it, commit ...
CARDONA: They gave -- exactly. But they gave an explanation that goes to core values. And that's where I don't think Donald Trump has core values on this or on anything else.
LEMON: OK. OK. We're going to continue. We'll be right back.
[21:26:25] LEMON: All right. In this campaign's war of words over racism, Donald Trump is using some of Hillary Clinton's own words against her.
Back with me now, Alice Stewart, Van Jones, Maria Cardona and Paris Dennard. So here is Donald Trump's new web ad aimed at African- American voters.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: They are often the kinds of kids that are called "superpredators." No conscience, no empathy. We can talk about why they ended up that way, but first we have to bring them to heel.
ERROL LOUIS, "INSIDE CITY HALL" HOST: You called out President Clinton for defending Secretary Clinton's use of the term "superpredator" back in the '90s when she supported the crime bill. Why did you call him out?
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS, (D-VT) FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Because it was a racist term and everybody knew it was a racist term.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: So, that's part of the ad, Maria first. Let me get this up, because Trump tweeted this today said, "How quickly people forget that crooked is Hillary called African-American youth superpredator. Has she apologized?" So here's the question, actually, Hillary Clinton did apologize.
LEMON: It was in a ...
LEMON: I think in February in "Time" magazine. There was an article of her apologizing. And then, I asked her about it in March at a debate. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: In 1996, you used the term superpredators to describe some young kids. Some feel like it was racial code. Was it and were you wrong to use that term?
CLINTON: Well, I was speaking about drug cartels and criminal activity that was very concerning to folks across the country. I think it was a poor choice of words. I never used it before, I haven't used it since. I would not use it again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: So Maria, why would he tweet that if she has apologized for it? Does that make a difference?
CARDONA: Well, see, and this is again the problem with his critique of Hillary Clinton. He uses things that have already been talked about and that yes, she has already apologized for. And the big difference is, Don, and you know this. I think everybody on the panel in America knows this. Trump has never apologized for anything. He has offended so many people, so many groups of voters, so many demographics which is why he is in such trouble in the polls, yet he has never come out to say I am sorry, I shouldn't have said this, I said this, you know, wrong and ...
LEMON: He gave a general apology about a week ago.
CARDONA: That doesn't count because what was he apologizing for?
LEMON: Yeah. Go ahead, Paris.
CARDONA: Really? I mean, what one thing was he apologizing for?
DENNARD: Either this campaign is going to be about Donald Trump versus Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump today versus Donald Trump from yesteryear. Maria just made a point saying that we are addressing things that happened in the past as relates to Hillary Clinton. That's all Maria does and all of the Democrats are doing ...
LEMON: Wait Paris ...
CARDONA: That she apologized for.
LEMON: Hold on, he tweeted out today.
CARDONA: That's right. LEMON: The reason we're talking about it is because he tweeted out today. Hillary Clinton used the term superpredators. How soon we forget. That's why we're talking -- has she apologizes. So this is just factual.
LEMON: She did. We asked her about in the debate, she did in the interview with "Time" magazine. She apologized for it. He's bringing up the past here. Go on.
DENNARD: And it's factual that Donald Trump has apologized and said he was sorry ...
CARDONA: For what?
DENNARD: Sorry for the things that he said that were insensitive or might have been taken out of context, and things like we keep bringing up things like David Duke and the racist stuff which is all false. But again, we forget the fact that he disavowed David Duke and every other person that is a racist that maybe affiliated with his campaign that people trying to say that are affiliated with this campaign. But yeah, we continue to bring it up, if you going to bring up the past about Hillary Clinton and leave it in the past and leave in the past about Donald Trump.
LEMON: Quickly Maria, because there are other people on the panel I want to go.
[21:30:00] CARDONA: OK. Sure. The very first general election ad that he ran was a -- an election ad that was demonizing immigrants and using statistics from a group called the Center for Immigration Studies that is a hate group that is connected to white supremacy.
DENNARD: So you're bringing up the past again.
CARDONA: So that was his first general -- no. This is his first general election ad that he ran not two weeks ago. He used it. He is putting himself on trial here and giving us the opportunity to point out why ...
CARDONA: ... the two-thirds of Americans believe that he is bigoted and racist.
LEMON: Let Van get in. Van, you seem confused by some of this. What's going on?
JONES: Well, let me say a couple things. First of all, the ad. This was a vulnerability for Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders raised it, it's been raised. I think Hillary Clinton has tried to address it.
And one of the things that I think is most remarkable is that, you know, in the 1990s, both she and her husband were big, big advocates of what turned out to be, you know, a mass incarceration agenda. What's remarkable about both the Clintons, though, is they looked at the data, they looked at the facts, they looked at the outcome and they have now become big champions for reform. That is what you can respect in a leader, to be able to make a mistake, look at that and not just them, by the way, Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, big Republicans have done the same thing.
Meanwhile, Donald Trump says he wants African-American votes and he's been completely tone-deaf on this issue and is going around saying law and order -- law and order, in a way that makes it seem as if he doesn't care if the police obey the law.
LEMON: Alice, you have ...
JONES: So, it's very interesting that they were raise -- that he's going to try to raise this question because I think the Clintons have performed quite well on this issue late.
LEMON: Alice, I want to talk about strategy because you've been the spokesperson for a number of big campaigns, and a presidential campaign as well, is this a viable strategy for Donald Trump? Is this strategy working for him?
STEWART: I think the fact that we spent this week talking about bigots and racists is a race to the bottom. And I think the voters are not interested in this. I think they want to hear what each of the candidates are going to do to help improve their economic situation, the national security of this country and certainly improve education and health care.
And I think Donald Trump can certainly show a sharp contrast if we want to talk about minorities. What he can do to help minorities. He takes a page from the Jack Kemp's Playbook. Talk about empowering minorities, talk about building ladders of opportunity and encouraging them to use their God-given talents to lift themselves up in their communities. And I think the tone of, you know, what the heck do you have to lose, probably he needs to tweak that a little bit.
STEWART: But use more of this as an opportunity to appeal to minorities on what they can offer the minority community as opposed to what the others had done to hurt their feelings or disenfranchise them decades ago. I think it's time to -- for both of them to focus on what they can do to help the minority community as opposed to what the others have done to harm it.
LEMON: So Paris, having heard all that, we have heard Trump call Clinton a bigot. Is he right then? I mean, if he is right about this, why does Hillary Clinton have the majority of the minority vote? 77 percent. Let's make that easier to understand. 77 percent of the minority vote.
DENNARD: I think what we see -- what we have seen this week is the Clinton campaign running scared because they know that Donald Trump is making significant inroads with the black community. There's no reason ... CARDONA: Oh, my goodness.
DENNARD: There's no reason -- no, oh, my goodness, it's the facts.
DENNARD: There's no reason for them to engage in this type of gutter politics against Donald Trump unless they were feeling scared or nervous that he was making inroads and connecting.
And the point that you made, Alice, is very factual, but also, we have to understand when you talk about Chicago and the crime that's there, under the Democrat rule, and Donald Trump talks about law and order, we need law and order in Chicago. But we also need to highlight the facts that are going on in our communities in these urban centers. And having a Republican candidate talk directly to black people and say I'm your person who's going to care about you and to fight ...
CARDONA: But he doesn't do that.
LEMON: So what Republican candidate is going to do that?
LEMON: What Republican candidate's going to do that? He's not spoken directly to the black community.
CARDONA: He has -- he doesn't do that.
DENNARD: Every single time he opens his mouth and talks to the black community on television and looks at this ...
JONES: But, Don?
CARDONA: Every single time ...
DENNARD: So is Speaker Ryan with the opportunity agenda.
DENNARD: Same thing.
CARDONA: Every single time that he speaks to either African-American voters or Latino voters it is condescending and it is insulting.
DENNARD: Oh no, it's not. No, it's not.
CARDONA: He says -- listen, listen, listen.
DENNARD: I'm an African-American, I don't find it condescending.
CARDONA: He says -- well, OK, to the majority.
DENNARD: No, I talk to other people, too. So you're wrong. CARDONA: He says to us that we are walking down the street and we get shot.
DENNARD: If you live in Chicago and look at the crime rate that's almost ...
CARDONA: No, but he doesn't say that.
LEMON: OK. So, hang on, Maria.
LEMON: I lived in Chicago, I lived in Harlem, I lived in a number of big cities. I never walk down the street and worry about getting shot. I've also lived in neighborhoods where ...
DENNARD: Well, I have ...
LEMON: ... with the town the town (inaudible), I've lived in, you know, tree-lined neighborhoods. Most African-Americans I know are educated, and they are working and they're doing quite well.
CARDONA: That's right.
DENNARD: I'm in the streets brother.
LEMON: And so -- I am, too.
[21:29:59] I am on the streets and on the subway and I never worry about getting shot. And there is no evidence from Larry Sabato, who is a numbers guy and a pollster guy, that Donald Trump is making any headway with any minority communities. Go ahead.
DENNARD: Larry Sabato quoted a polls ...
JONES: I have to say something, Don, here and part of the thing that I'm concerned about it is, it actually is the case that there are some Republicans who understand and who have tried to reach out.
JONES: And you do have a Paul Ryan who used to say very, very disturbing things who has completely changed and is trying to ...
LEMON: Rand Paul.
JONES: ... Rand Paul and others. And yet, you have Donald Trump who's doing it exactly wrong. First of all, what if I were to say to white people who are in poverty, who vote for Republicans, you have been in poverty for generations, you live in a trailer, you don't have good dental health care, you should stop voting for Republicans and vote for me or vote for Hillary Clinton. You -- but the insult would be so loud that it would drown out anything else I had to say.
JONES: And that's what we hear from Donald Trump. He continues to lead with insults even when he's reaching out.
And what I would -- think it's very important for Republicans like the ones we have on here to reach out and to be more inclusive. And I think Democrats sometimes want to beat up Republicans even when they're doing it the right way.
JONES: But Donald Trump is doing it the wrong way.
LEMON: As I explained to a friend just yesterday, I said if you have a friend or your spouse says, "Honey, I have an issue with you." And you say, "Oh, there's not an issue, there's no problem here." Then you never get anything, you have to start from the premise that if someone is telling you, you're doing it wrong, that they have an issue with the way you're doing it, that there is indeed an issue with the way you're doing it. Because then you prove Hillary Clinton right when she says the nerve of you to tell me what's better for me, for you to tell me what you know better for me what's good for me. Do you understand that?
DENNARD: Well I mean, (inaudible) Hillary Clinton that talks about community, I mean, you can't have it both ways. I mean either you go -- you have two white people who are running for president and you want them both to talk to the black community. So they're going to do that. And they have to have some type of credibility. By saying it, and I think Donald Trump does ...
LEMON: I think it would be right if Hillary Clinton ...
LEMON: ... was saying vote for me, then, you know, what more do you have to lose, at your neighborhoods are terrible, I think it would be right ...
DENNARD: Well, she says vote for me because he's a bigot. That what she says.
STEWART: Don, let me just say this in terms of ...
LEMON: Go ahead.
STEWART: ... what Donald Trump has to offer the minority community. I do think his economic policies will be better for this country. I do think it will help lift people out of poverty. In terms of Republican agenda has always been about lifting people up and giving them a hand up and not just a hand out. And I think it's just a matter of him communicating that in the right way where they understand.
LEMON: Alice, I think you're right. Yes. I think you're right. And that -- I think you're right in that. DENNARD: Come to the campaign, Alice.
LEMON: It's not -- people are not saying that the policies are bad. They're saying that the approach is wrong. That's it.
STEWART: Well, there are some people who are saying the policies are bad.
LEMON: I got to -- that's a whole another argument.
STEWART: Another conversation.
LEMON: We have to talk (ph) about for the policies, too.
DENNARD: (Inaudible) is a good policy.
LEMON: All right you all. They're telling me I have to go 10 minutes ago. So coming up, the man who know what voters are thinking about Donald Trump's mixed messages on immigration.
[21:41:57] LEMON: What do voters think of Donald Trump's mixed messages on immigration? Joining me now, three radio hosts who have the ear of those voters and listeners, Dennis Prager, is a nationally- syndicated talk show host, John DePetro is a talk show host with WPRO in Providence and Chris Stigall is a host of WPHT morning show in Philadelphia. A lot to talk about, gentlemen, so let's get straight to it.
All right here is Donald Trump on Hannity on Wednesday. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: No citizenship?
TRUMP: No citizenship.
HANNITY: Everyone agree with that?
TRUMP: All right. Let me go a 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.
(END VIDEO CLIP) LEMON: All right and here's Trump with Anderson last night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: So if they haven't committed a crime, is there going to be a path to legalization?
TRUMP: First thing we're going to do ...
COOPER: I'm talking about citizenship, legalization.
TRUMP: No there is not a path. There is no path to legalization ...
COOPER: You talked about pay back taxes on Hannity.
TRUMP: ... unless people leave the country -- well, when they come back in, if they come back in, then they can start paying taxes.
COOPER: So they still have to leave the country?
TRUMP: But there is no path to legalization unless they leave the country and come back.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: OK. So Dennis, I'm going to start with you. Donald Trump's what appears to be zigzagging on his core anti-immigrant campaign platform all week, how are your listeners responding? Is anybody confused about this or they get it?
DENNIS PRAGER, NATIONAL SYNDICATED TALK SHOW HOST: Look, nobody could talk on behalf of all their listeners. I'm on 150 stations with a couple of million listeners. You know, I'm a self confident guy but I can't tell you what they all think. I can tell you, though, that my conservative listeners are not stupid. And they understand that no matter what his position, there's a grand canyonesque separation between him and Hillary Clinton. She wants all illegal immigrants to become American citizens and obviously to vote and the presumption is that the vast majority will vote Democrat.
That's -- so whatever his position, that's an interesting question and a very difficult one for him to navigate. I acknowledge that. But between the two, they're not dummies. Oh, he's not radical enough for me. I won't vote for him.
LEMON: So it doesn't matter to me.
PRAGER: I don't think that's an issue.
LEMON: It doesn't matter. They're not going anywhere else. Is that what you're saying?
PRAGER: That's correct. That is correct.
LEMON: Yeah. OK. So John, John what about you? I just want to -- what do your listeners think? JOHN DEPETRO, WPRO TALK SHOW HOST: You know, Don, it's interesting. Independent voters, they view Donald Trump, from what I was hearing today, as this is a guy that's going to get it done. You know, Washington is broken. Maybe he doesn't have it exactly right but they know at the end of the day when it's President Trump, he is going to build a wall, he is going to get rid of the criminals. At least he's going to address the problem.
I agree with Dennis Prager. It's a world of difference. Maybe the hard end, the hard right, they are upset about it.
But one of the most important things about this, Don, is the whole element of deterrence. If Don Lemon is riding along and sees a police car, he slows down. If you have a president who is zeroed in on illegal immigration, that's going to keep a lot of illegals out and a lot of people are going to leave on their own.
[21:45:06] So this business of rounding up 11 million, everything else, you know, it's all just parsing words.
DEPETRO: He owns the issue compared to Hillary.
LEMON: All right, just so I get it, so your listeners, some of them are voicing some concern, but like Dennis, they're not going anywhere. They understand that he's at least close enough to their side that it's going to stick, correct? Is that what you're saying?
DEPETRO: Don, that's exactly right.
LEMON: OK. All right.
DEPETRO: And listen to the crowd when he was talking. Listen to the applause of the people excited.
LEMON: All right. We'll get to Chris now. Chris, you know, Chris, the surrogates seem clear on the policy. What about your listeners? How do they see it?
CHRIS STIGALL, HOST, WPTH MORNING SHOW, PHILADELPHIA: I agree with the gentlemen. I mean, there's nothing -- where will they go? What is your option? If you intend to vote for president and you're not a Hillary Clinton supporter, where do you go?
What I wish, deeply wish, is that Donald Trump could have stayed focused on what was a really great week last week and really the early part of this week.
Focus on her. And here we are back to parsing and slicing and dicing words he said on any given day. If only he could just drive home the problems with her and stay off of anything else tangentially related to the campaign, it's a winner.
But I cannot figure out the logic in turning over this frank lines opinion polling session on a "Hannity Show" on a random Wednesday night. I don't get it. I don't know why he keeps doing this.
LEMON: Dennis, you and I have spoken about this before about he can't seem to help himself with stepping on some of his own message. And you know, the running for president, the political gods, you know, kind of smiled on him this week with the e-mails and with the Clinton Foundation and instead, now this happened with immigration and then also the bigot thing. So, maybe Chris has a point here.
PRAGER: Well, there is a point there. But there's a chicken and an egg issue. Who came first? The press start pushing him on other issues because look, if the press has pretty much acknowledged, it wants Hillary Clinton as president.
PRAGER: The "New York Times," one of its chief writers has actually acknowledged it, said, it's actually immoral for us to try to cover both of these people impartially because morally we want Hillary Clinton to win.
LEMON: But, Dennis, the press didn't make him say it. That was in the teleprompter. Bigot was in the teleprompter.
PRAGER: Oh, no, I was responding to the immigration issue.
PRAGER: The bigot issue, look, the bigot issue ...
LEMON: And the immigration issue, he said that on his own, Dennis. I mean, with all due respect ...
PRAGER: Yeah. Oh, I don't know. Yes. OK. So, if he raised it on his own, then it is because he needs to pivot more to the center to win a national election.
Every candidate does that except ironically, Hillary Clinton, who has pivoted only to the left and still feels she can win which might be true because look, the American people have moved to the left.
LEMON: But my point is, but my point is -- because I got to get to the break. My point is and I think Chris's point is that he postponed this immigration, you know, the speech on immigration so that one would think he could capitalize on a bad news week for Hillary Clinton. But yet and still, he went on to talk about immigration in a way that didn't seem to succeed. Am I wrong with that, Chris?
STIGALL: We're talking about a woman who was under federal investigation before she got her party's nomination. There has never been a more beatable Democrat in history. There's nothing else for him to talk about but her. Just stay on her and you stand a real shot at winning this thing running away.
LEMON: Yeah. All right. We'll be back. We'll continue. Don't go anywhere.
[21:52:18] LEMON: Back now with the radio guys. OK. Guys, let's just rip. First, can we talk about these shadow voters or so-called, shy vote? Who has an opinion on that? Are people talking about that?
DEPETRO: They are, Don. You know, what's interesting is, as you know during the primaries, every time there was a poll, they would under- show where Trump was going to be and then he would blow it out in the primary.
So, it's tough to really track the Trump voters. But what I think was really significant this week is Hillary by her, you know, calling him a racist and therefore kind of embarrassing.
If you're a Trump supporter, you're a racist. What she's ensured is now people don't want to argue about it. They don't want to be called a racist.
So I think it's going to be even tougher to track exactly who's going to be a Trump supporter. But make no mistake about it, Don Lemon, people are going to come out and droves the vote for Donald Trump.
LEMON: You think it's worked in the reverse Chris that he -- that, you know, she's calling him saying that he's trafficking in bigotry?
STIGALL: That was the design. I know that was discussed early on your show today, Don, that this was done very purposely for a reason. And it was to tell people that are on the fence about him or aren't particularly nuts about her, you don't want to go with that guy, he's crazy, he's a bigot.
So, you know, people that don't like her, and that's most of the country, people that don't trust her, and that's most of the country, they may not feel great about voting for Donald Trump, but they really don't want to vote for her. So maybe they'll just vote for him and never -- they did it.
How many there are? I don't know. Will he win? I don't know. But I guarantee you, there are a lot of people that will never admit, they're about to cast a vote for Donald Trump.
LEMON: All right, Dennis, I want to hear what you have to think about this because ...
PRAGER: Well, let me talk on a very large picture here of the whole term of racist and bigot and so on. I believe that one of the sins for which the left in America really is going to have to answer to if there was a good God, is that they have denuded the terms racist and other horrible things of any meaning.
There has been such a crying of wolf on this matter. All of my -- literally, all of my life. Then I've actually coined an acronym on my show, "SIXHIRB", sexist, intolerance, xenophobic, homophobic, Islamophobic, racist, bigoted. The left doesn't actually argue with you, they call you one of those six things, seven things and that ends all discussion.
So, I don't even know if it resonates. I don't -- I think at this point, since every Republican is called that anyway, I don't know if it matters.
LEMON: So, I have a linguist who's on later, a very respected linguist and we talk about exactly what you're talking about now. So I hope you stay tuned and you listen to this. It's in the next hour. I think it's a fascinating conversation.
And I think anyone has to admit that there are times on the left where the left throws at those terms around for conservatives.
[21:55:03] PRAGER: Yeah.
LEMON: But in this particular election, do you think, any of you, that Donald Trump -- has he done anything to deserve any of that? Is he trafficking at all in ...
PRAGER: Well, if I may just comment on one and you know I'll be brief because I know I always cherish the other people's right to speak.
But I'm a Jew and I wrote a book on anti-Semitism, which is extremely highly regarded. And this notion that that six-pointed star was anti- Semitic, that's an example of just over-the-top foolishness.
And what it does is it cheapens real anti-Semitism. A man that has a Jewish daughter, Orthodox Jewish daughter, Orthodox Jewish son-in-law, Orthodox Jewish children, who's other son is dating a Jew, that this man is anti-Semitic is bizarre.
LEMON: OK. Chris, you had a -- there's some (ph) reaction to that. Can you -- I'll give you the last word, unless you go short enough to let John at word.
STIGALL: To Dennis's point, if we want to talk about guilt by association, let's look at the millions upon millions of dollars that Mrs. Clinton and her husband have taken from some of the most bigoted -- the subjugation of women, the literal murder of gays by some governments that have given big bucks to the Clinton Foundation. If we're going to go guilt by association, we can do this all day but we'd better do it with her to.
LEMON: John, he went too long. I'll see you next time.
DEPETRO: All right. That's the final.
LEMON: Thank you, Chris, thank you, John, thank you, Dennis. I appreciate it. Have a great weekend. OK.
We'll be right back.
[22:00:15] LEMON: Donald Trump speaking at a sold-out --