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Preparations for Marking 15th Anniversary of 9/11 Attacks; Candidates Battle over Who Will Protect US Better; Trump Over the Top?; Clinton Statements on Emails Examined; NFL Players Anthem Protest Spreads. Aired 10-11p ET

Aired September 9, 2016 - 22:00   ET




ANDERSON COOPER, AC360 SHOW HOST: Hey, that does it for us. Hope you have great weekend. Thanks for watching. CNN Tonight with Don Lemon starts now.

DON LEMON, CNN TONIGHT SHOW HOST: You're looking at downtown Manhattan and the tribute in light as America prepares for the 15th anniversary of 9/11.

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton battle for who will keep us safe.

This is CNN Tonight. I'm Don Lemon.

The candidate is focusing on national security amid growing threats from ISIS and North Korea.

Trump speaking to conservatives in Washington saying this.


DONALD TRUMP, (R) U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Just today, it was announced that North Korea performed its fifth nuclear test, its fourth since Hillary Clinton became Secretary of State. It's just one more massive failure from a failed Secretary of State.


LEMON: Clinton after meeting with national security officials says this.


HILLARY CLINTON, (D) U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't want to rehash everything my opponent has said in this campaign but no conversation about our national security would be complete unless we acknowledge that the nominee on the other side promises to do things that will make us less safe.


LEMON: Meanwhile, Trump tells a crowd at his Florida rally this tonight about Hillary Clinton.


CLINTON: She is being so protected. She could walk into this arena right now and shoot somebody with 20,000 people watching right smack in the middle of the heart and she wouldn't be prosecuted, OK? That's what's happened. That is what's happened to our country.


LEMON: This from the man who once said he could shoot someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue and not lose a vote. Even for Donald Trump, is this going too far?

We're going to discuss that. Let's go right now to Juliette Kayyem, who was at Hillary Clinton's national security event today. She is the author of "Security Mom," also Jim Sciutto. CNN's Jim Sciutto, Jill Dougherty of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and Rear Admiral Charles "Chuck" Williams who supports Donald Trump.

I have a lot of question for everyone. Jim, I have a question for you. But as you were sitting here and I read this, Juliette, you grimaced at hearing that, why?

JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: It's a very weird thing to say that the other nominee can kill 20,000 or 3,000, weirdest I thought it's just crazy. It's like just start using the word. It's a crazy thing to say, you know, especially in the world where there's a lot of gun violence. And so, sorry for the grimace. I don't have a poker, but I was -- I hadn't heard it before. I just got into the studio.

LEMON: He was saying that in front of an audience of 20 or 30,000. yes.

KAYYEM: Right.

LEMON: And that's why you said it's going to far even for Donald Trump. We're going to discuss that a little but later on the show but your reaction was so visceral, I had to get to that.

Jim Sciutto, I want to go to you now. For the last few days both candidates have been focused on proving that they can keep the country safe. Last night, North Korea tested a nuclear missile. How big of a problem is that for the next president ?

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN'S CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: In a word, enormous. This is a prospect that successive administration, republicans or democrat have been trying to prevent. They've tried rewarding North Korea. They've tried punishing North Korea, they're tried negotiating with North Korea and all of it has failed.

And now North Korea is effectively a nuclear power. And the options on the table to try to change that, you know, the possibility of a military strike, that of course would be an act of war, that the chance of sparking a war in Asia, the possibility of a military blockade also possibly seen as an act of war.

Economic sanctions, which are being what are being talked about now. They've been tried successively over the last several years and those haven't worked.

So, alarming reality that we're facing right now, one that U.S. officials have been bracing themselves for and warning about for years now apparently a reality and the options to change that reality, none of them really palatable.

LEMON: Yes. And, Jim Sciutto, North Korea is also been testing ballistic missile to amount to these weapons on. How close are they to getting a delivery system?

SCIUTTO: The official view of U.S. intelligence is that we have to assume they have the ability to do that. James Clapper, the director of National Intelligence he tells me it's an untested capability because they haven't proven it but they've certainly been trying.

We've seen that they have the ability to launch short and medium range missile missiles. They're launching those every few weeks. In terms of intercontinental ballistic missiles they've done a space shot. That's nothing to do with exploring the moon or going to Mars. That's about developing an ICBM.

[22:04:57] The only part of that they haven't proven is developing a reentry vehicle that could take a nuclear warhead to the continent of the United States. But the U.S. intelligence view is we have to assume they already have that capability.

LEMON: Admiral Williams, I want to play something Donald Trump said today about North Korea. Listen to this.


TRUMP: Just today, it was announced that North Korea performed its fifth nuclear test, its fourth since Hillary Clinton became Secretary of State. It's just one more massive failure from a failed Secretary of State.


LEMON: So, admiral, let's look at the time line here. The first test was in during in 2006, it was during the Bush administration and his Secretary of State was Condoleezza Rice, the next was in 2009, Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State. But the final three happen 2013 and this year during Secretary Kerry's term.

Is it accurate to blame Hillary Clinton for this test?

CHARLES "CHUCK" ADAMS, RETIRED U.S. NAVY: Well, partially. I mean, she was Secretary of State. Part of it happened on her watch. I don't know if you recall this, Don, but in 2010, every year there is real fear on the part of the South Koreans that one day the North Koreans are going to attack. There is something like 15 million people that live in Seoul. So, if

North Korea were to attack, and we've done this exercise we do it every year. If they attack there are going to have tens of thousands of loss of life in Seoul.

In 2010, we started to do this exercise and the Chinese in the Yellow Sea off the Coast of North Korea. If you do that as an economic zone for us, you cannot operate in this area. We've been operating there for years. There's been international water. It was during Secretary Clinton's term as Secretary of State.

And the Chinese demanded that we pull the ships out and President Obama acquiesce. I think Rob Willard was the commander of the Pacific force of that time. We moved that exercise over the sea of Japan.

Once you start given up some of that those rights, it's hard to get it back and that was during Secretary of Clinton's time.

LEMON: Juliette Kayyem, is that accurate?

KAYYEM: Well, it's one piece of a much complicated issue. That it's easy to say this is a problem. That's -- no one is denying it. The administration is saying it, the world community is saying it, the head of the U.N. is saying it. But what's the solution?

As Jim was saying, the solutions or how to deal with that are limited. And they're probably limited to two very dramatic things. One is Obviously, us doing a first strike, not nuclear but to try to do something militarily in North Korea. A lot of consequences for that.

The second is China. And so what we're going to need to do is to have China begin to take their support of North Korea more seriously as a -- and their support of essentially propping up an economy that won't otherwise be able to withstand the fact that they don't manufacture anything anymore.

And to take seriously that this is now a threat not just to South Korea but to the entire Asian Peninsula. And that is not going to be solved by saying it's their fault, right. We, you know, it's easy to say there's problems in the world. There's been problems in the world for a very long time.

LEMON: Jill Dougherty, you've been covering international -- go ahead, Admiral.

WILLIAMS: Don, I was just going to say something. Here is my biggest fear. We had a retired flag conference about a week ago. And we often keep either a cruiser or destroyer up there, usually it's a cruiser. But it's hard to keep a ship there 24/7. Well, we do have the capability to take out short range and medium range missiles.

My fear is what if North Korea accidentally -- they launch a weapon and it doesn't go where it supposed to go like the Sea of Japan where it lands in Japan or it lands in South Korea. They are not the most predictable. I don't think they are the most accurate. I really have a huge fear that one day they could launch a weapon that hit something accidentally.

LEMON: Jill, you've been...


SCIUTTO: Well, Don, I just want...

LEMON: Go ahead, Jim.

SCIUTTO: ... I want to add there and I don't mean to interrupt, but the U.S. just decided with South Korea to deploy the THAAD theater missile defense, which is a high altitude defense designed to protect South Korea from a launch from North Korea.

South Korea has been pushing this for some time. So they got what they wanted. The trouble is that that further antagonizes China because China thinks that it's aimed at them. And to Juliette's point, it shows just how complicated it is. So, you're putting a defensive weapon there to protect your ally South Korea. That makes it more difficult to get China on board for measures to stop North Korea.

LEMON: Yes. I started this question three times. So, Jill, I will just say you have been covering international affairs for CNN for decade and so you know this reason well. What's your assessment of what's been said here so far?

JILL DOUGHERTY, WOODROW WILSON INTERNATIONAL CENTER FOR SCHOLARS FELLOW: I think I would go with the idea that it's very complicated, that you move one piece, which sounds, as Jim is just saying, sounds logical, sounds like a good idea but China is a key player when you get -- when you're talking about North Korea.

And so, keeping China on board, keeping China putting pressure on North Korea is extremely important.

[22:10:00] And you have a lot of chess pieces right now on that board. So, you know, again, a simplistic idea might sound really attractive but in the end it could complicate things very seriously.

LEMON: This is what Hillary Clinton said today. Hang on, Admiral -- said today, "The U.S. needs to rethink its strategy and lean on China to rein in Kim Jong-un. Let's listen.


CLINTON: We are not going to let anyone who is treaty ally and partner of ours be threatened and we are not going to let North Korea pursue a nuclear weapon with the ballistic missile capacity to deliver it to the United States territory. That is absolutely the bottom line.


LEMON: So, Admiral, you were saying, what's your response?

ADAM: Well, right now the range they have is I think about 2,500 miles. So, they can reach Japan, they can reach Guam. I can remember people saying they might be able to reach Hawaii. I don't think so. I even heard some argue they could reach the West Coast. I don't believe that either.

But I think all your panelists will agree with this but I'm not sure if your audience really appreciates that dynamic between North Korea, South Korea and China and if you want, I'll go into that for a moment.

LEMON: Yes. Go ahead.

ADAMS: OK. The reason China cares about this, they want-- they want a buffer. They don't want to see South Korea -- there's some fear that maybe the South Koreans and United States would want to invade North Korea and then there is no buffer.

We're right up against the Chinese border. There's a fear on the part of Chinese that the North Koreans if there were any kind of conflict, there would be just hoards of people that would in to China but they've got to take care of North Koreans.

So, the Chinese like it the way it is. But it's like having a bad child. I mean, China, I'm sure doesn't want North Korea to do a lot of things they do. But sometimes it's hard to control. And you've got a pretty young erratic leader in Kim Jong-un right now. So, I'm sure the Chinese want to help but they just -- they seems to have controlling them.

LEMON: Final word.

KAYYEM: I mean, and the people may wonder why. Why do we keep talking about sanctions? It's a totally poor country. One of the reasons we're doing the sanctions is to ensure that if the country falls, a bunch of North Korean leaders don't lead it with money. And so, one of the -- what we're trying to say is get rid of this leader and then we'll drop the sanctions.

LEMON: Yes. I have a question for Jill Dougherty when we come back because Donald Trump has been thinking that Donald Trump -- that Vladimir Putin is saying that he is brilliant but does he have the translation wrong? We'll discuss that when we come right back. We'll be back.


LEMON: Donald Trump did an interview that aired on Russian TV and what he said is causing plenty of controversy.

Back with me now, Juliette Kayyem, Jim Sciutto, Jill Dougherty, and rear Admiral Charles "Chuck" Williams.

Jill, you were CNN's bureau chief in Moscow. You've studied Russia for decades. Donald Trump has been praising Vladimir Putin and saying he likes him. Let's listen to him on that tonight.


TRUMP: But she talks about me, oh, Donald Trump likes Putin and Putin likes Trump. Honestly, I don't know the gentleman, but you know what? He's been nice to me. If he's nice to me, that's fine. Not going to make a bit of difference.

If we don't get great deals for our country, nothing matters to me. It's all about getting great deals.


And I'll tell you this, if we got along with Russia, that wouldn't be so bad, would it? That wouldn't be so bad. And if Russia, which has a huge ISIS problem also wants to help us get rid of ISIS and wants to spend billions and billions of dollars along with us on getting rid of ISIS, I'm all for it, folks.


LEMON: So, Jill, you think he's playing right into Putin's hands? Why?

DOUGHERTY: Well, look, everybody wants better relations with Russia ultimately, at least, you know, when it comes to working out things like Syria and North Korea, by the way. But the problem is how you get there.

And the things that Donald Trump is saying, NATO is obsolete, you know, we can work -- we can work -- well, let's say, NATO is obsolete, we ought to, you know, not continue in the path that we're continuing and these things that kind of drive a wedge between the United States and its allies do play into Putin's hand.

When he says, for example, that Putin is a strong leader and has high ratings, that also is very, you know, technically true but very naive explanation of what's going on inside Russia.

So, when Putin looks at this it's very easy for Putin and the Russian media and I must say, you know, their propaganda organs to exploit that, play it right back and they don't even have to work hard to do it.

LEMON: You say that he believes Putin called him brilliant but that is a mistranslation. Explain that.

DOUGHERTY: It is. In fact, I was at that news conference quite a while ago during the primaries. And President Putin said, you know, and he used a Russian word which is "yarkii, yarkii." And what means is bright in the sense of bright lights, flashy...


LEMON: Colorful.

DOUGHERTY: ... colorful, et cetera. Yes. I mean, he essentially he said he's one colorful politician. That would be the right translation. But then it appeared on wires and other places as brilliant and, again, you can see that there's a lost in translation moment. So, then that gets translated into Donald Trump is brilliant, smart

and scary smart. Now, I don't know why this hasn't gone away.


DOUGHERTY: It hasn't gone away. Because it's not correct.

LEMON: Maybe Jim Sciutto can explain. Go, Jim.

SCIUTTO: Well, here's the other thing. From a U.S. intelligence perspective, a U.S. defense perspective, these are the folks whose job it is to protect American national security. What Russia does is not just unpalatable, it is dangerous.

You speak to the director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, the director of the CIA, Brennan, when you ask them what are the number one threats to U.S. national security they put Russia and China at the top, above terrorism, well above ISIS.

Director Clapper calls Russia an existential threat to the U.S. because of its nuclear power but also its military moves in recent years invading Ukraine, annexing Crimea, expanding its nuclear sub force to threaten and challenge American -- America's nuclear sub force.

[22:20:11] Putting its planes, ships and submarines close not just to U.S. naval and military forces abroad, I mean, these fly-bys that we talk about and report on, but off the Coast of the United States.

These are direct challenges to American national security. So, you speak to people in the security establishment, this is not just an uncomfortable or impolite issue, it is a dangerous issue when they look at Russia.

LEMON: Admiral, before I get you I have one quick question for Juliette Kayyem. Well, maybe two.

KAYYEM: Maybe, you know, as Jill said, you know, why won't this go away, because it sounds good.

KAYYEM: Right.

LEMON: Maybe he can use it as rhetoric on the campaign trail. But your -- does Russia really have an ISIS, a big ISIS problem?

KAYYEM: well, the former -- the former Soviet Republic, people are being radicalized and that's why so much migration. But if you think, you know, what's the issue with Russia, ISIS does not come to mind.

It is exactly the stuff that Jim and Jill were talking about, which is it has nuclear weapons, it's a strategic threat to us, it's a destabilizing impact in Europe. And they're -- like let's not forget they're doing lots of cyber weirdness and madness and attacks here in the United States.

And so, you know, he throw, Donald Trump throws up ISIS as if, OK, if I just say ISIS then it's OK, right, because how everyone is afraid of ISIS. When really what's discuss in the meeting that I was with Secretary Clinton is, ISIS is also a complicated problem but that's different than Russian have sort of throw in everything together.

A think at some point you just have to admit, you know, you can't just sort of throw up, you know, sort of words and say that's going to solve the problem. These are very complicated and distinct issues.

LEMON: Admiral, are you comfortable with hearing so much praise for Vladimir Putin lately, especially coming from Donald Trump?

ADAMS: Yes. Let me talk about this, Don, because I think kind of important. First, let's talk about the space program.

LEMON: Right.

ADAMS: If I'm not mistaken we right now have two astronauts up in space in a Russian -- with Russian astronauts and we're dependent on Russia launching their recovery vehicle, their space shuttle to go up and get these Americans and bring them back.

I've done a lot of real estate deals. I think I understand Donald Trump a little bit on the real estate side. And here's the premise of that. As long as you're talking, as long as there's a conversation, there's always a chance of a solution.

And when the two parties finally decide I don't want to talk anymore, we'll never come to a conclusion on this, we'll never reach agreement, you walk away, then the deal is dead. So, I think Trump is thinking like a real estate guy, saying, OK, as long as I have a conversation, I got a chance to work out something.

ISIS -- Putin already had...

LEMON: Does that work though in foreign policy as a president?

ADAMS: I think it works everywhere. We're talking about human beings. I mean, Trump -- Putin is almost like a street fighter. It's like -- I don't know what kind of neighborhood you grow up in but if you're in an area and you've got a gang here and a gang over here and they each see each other as equals, nobody wants to take the other guy because I don't want to have him -- I don't want to lose and have him take all my turf, so I'm not going to attack him if he's not going to attack me.

But once I sense weakness, then I'll attack the other guy. And Frankly, I really believe when President Obama drew the red line in the sand in Syria didn't act, six months after that day, roughly six months. Russia went in to Syria. I think Russia saw a weakness. And they rebuilt their home port. They only have really one port outside of Russia and that's in Syria.

And now they're kind of a menace in the Mediterranean. They've got more access now of the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean. So, I think when he sees weakness, he acts. If he sees strength, he'll back off. LEMON: I want Juliette to respond to that. Go ahead, Juliette.

KAYYEM: Look, you know, George Bush look into Putin's eyes and said, this is a man I can communicate with. And by the end of the bush administration, every -- you know, Putin is Putin, right.

And so you can say he's my friend and therefore we're still communicating. You can say this guy is problem who has to be managed. That's just a philosophy of diplomacy. And if you think what does Putin want in terms of the different choices that are before the U.S. government -- before U.S. population.

Does Putin think he'd get away with more under a president Trump or a president Clinton? And I think the answer is pretty clear.

LEMON: Yes. Thank you. That was an amazing conversation. And, Admiral, to answer your question, the only gangs growing up on my street was our gang, the Little Rascals.

ADAMS: Is it.

LEMON: So there you go.

ADAMS: If I could add something if you got a minute.

LEMON: I don't but if you can go quickly I will allow.

ADAMS: All right. Harvard this is only early 2000. So, Harvard had a program invited American generals and admirals and Russian generals to a program, it's an international program to try and develop relationships.

And I can tell you if you sit down with a Russian at about 2 o'clock in the morning with some vodka and a Cuban cigar, you'd be amazed the stuff you'd begin to hear. And I can tell you there are some things that we can agree to.


[22:24:59] ADAMS: But they have some fears. And if we have more time I can get into what their fears.

LEMON: To be continued. I appreciate that.


LEMON: Thank you, sir. Thank you, everyone. have a great weekend.

Be sure -- make sure you join CNN for an exclusive interview with Hillary Clinton on 9/11 terror and national security this Sunday morning at 9, and then again at noon Eastern.

And when we come right back, Donald Trump has said a lot of shocking things but what he said about Hillary Clinton tonight may be going too far. We're going to discuss it next.


LEMON: Donald Trump went off script in his Florida rally tonight making this shocking charge about Hillary Clinton.


TRUMP: She is being so protected. She could walk into this arena right now and shoot somebody with 20,000 people watching right smack in the middle of the heart and she wouldn't be prosecuted, OK? That's what's happened. That is what's happened to our country.


LEMON: Let's discuss now. Boris Epshteyn is here, he is a senior adviser to the Trump campaign, Paris Dennard, director of Black Outreach for President George W. Bush and a Trump supporter, CNN political contributor Van Jones, and CNN political commentator, Bob Beckel.

I can say I have my hands hold, gentlemen. Welcome. Boris, why would Donald Trump say that, why did you think?

BORIS EPSHTEYN, TRUMP CAMPAIGN SENIOR ADVISER: Listen, it's hyperbole, right? And he's obviously talking about the fact that she is somebody who is getting away with everything. I mean, look at the career of the Clintons. Look back at white Water, Lincoln bedroom, look at the all the scandals.

[22:30:00] But specifically, look at the e-mails, all the information that came out last week destroying Blackberries with hammers, lying to Congress about turning over all e-mails.


[22:30:10] LEMON: So that's why he would say that.

EPSHTEYN: Because she is protected. He's right. She's being protected. She should have been indicted.

LEMON: Yes. It sounds a lot like -- Van, do you want to say something? I was just clearing of the throat.

VAN JONES, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I'm happy to point that if she's being so protected, how do you know all that stuff? That this stuff is being reported on 24 hours a day.

You guys are jetting it up. Who's doing the protecting here, the American people have made a judgment that they'd rather have someone like her, who is flawed but at least is prepared than someone who is both flawed and unprepared to be president of the United States.

LEMON: Go ahead, Boris.

EPSHTEYN: Well, to be fair, they haven't made any judgment. The election hasn't happened. Donald Trump is up in the CNN poll...


JONES: The poll.

EPSHTEYN: And he's up by 15 percent on truthfulness. So if the American people are making a judgment, it's that she's not trustworthy. That's the judgment they're making, my friend.

LEMON: Up by 15 percent. I mean, it sound like a big number but...


BOB BECKEL, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Where did you get that number, Boris? That is a big number.

LEMON: Go ahead, Bob.

BECKEL: I'm in the polling business and you always shock me by coming up with a new number. Where did you get that?

EPSHTEYN: CNN/ORC. On trustworthiness.

BECKEL: I hate to say this about our own poll but our poll was not very good.

EPSHTEYN: I mean, OK. CNN has been attacking its own poll a week. I love seeing it. It's cannibalism.



BECKEL: I bet you do.

DENNARD: You know, Bob, and Don, they don't matter what the polls are saying, it's what the American people are saying. And when you look at time and time again things that have happened to the Clintons, especially Secretary Clinton, there's a narrative out there that seems to suggest that thing there's a different set of rules for the Clintons.

LEMON: Yes. That's right.

JONES: That you are an arrogant.

DENNARD: Even Colin Kaepernick said the same thing.


EPSHTEYN: All around the city...

DENNARD: Colin Kaepernick that he said the football player said if anybody else had done what she did as related to the e-mails, they would be in jail. He's not a political -- he's not a political scholar, he's not a pollster. That's what American people feel.

So, what Mr. Trump was saying was in hyperbole that things just don't stick to her because there seems to be a different set of rules.

BECKEL: Paris, you name me two more -- you name me two public figures who have not been more investigated than the Clintons?

EPSHTEYN: Sure. George W. Bush, and George H.W. Bush.

BECKEL: Oh, come on.

EPSHTEYN: All republicans out there


BECKEL: Twenty six years...

EPSHTEYN: Wait, hold on. Hold on. Let me answer. And by the way, investigated and indicted well above -- let me answer the question. Investigated and indicted are two different things. After Bill Clinton has a powwow with Loretta Lynch, all of a sudden Hillary Clinton is not indicted. And to quote the naval officer from the forum, John Lester, he said, "if anyone else who had done that would have been indicted and in jail."


LEMON: Wait a minute. I got to get in here. I'm sorry. What was George Bush and George W. Bush...

EPSHTEYN: They've been vetted; they've been investigated for...


LEMON: What were they investigated for?

EPSHTEYN: The people have been vetted, their backgrounds...


LEMON: Well, what were they investigated for, you said no one is...

EPSHTEYN: Listen, they haven't done anything criminal so they...

LEMON: But you just said that they had been investigated, so where the proof, what's the investigation?

EPSHTEYN: Look at their public lives. They've all been on public display.

LEMON: OK. There is no proof that they have been investigated about anything.

DENNARD: But to Bob's point...

EPSHTEYN: You have to commit something -- you have to commit a crime...

LEMON: I understand that but you're saying -- I know but you are saying, you made the assessment that they had been investigated. For what?

EPSHTEYN: The last two republican president, of course like they haven't because they didn't do anything criminal like Hillary Clinton has.


EPSHTEYN: They were vetted. Hillary Clinton has been vetted and she's been lying to the American people.

JONES: Hey, Don, let me say something here.


DENNARD: Don, I think...

LEMON: Go ahead.

DENNARD: To Bob's point, yes, the Clintons have been investigated quite considerably over their decades and decades of service. But the point is they have never had the same type of charges and convictions like any other regular American would have.

So, that's the narrative that the rules don't apply to them. The rules don't apply to the Clintons. And they seem to get away with almost anything.

LEMON: Hang on. Are they getting away with it or is it just that there's no evidence there to indict them?

EPSHTEYN: Well, you saw the evidence.

LEMON: I'm just asking.

EPSHTEYN: The evidence is on its face.

JONES: I got to get in here, Don.

LEMON: van.

EPSHTEYN: Come on, Van.

JONES: Listen, this is what we do. Donald Trump is a master of this. He throws out some crazy statement and then his surrogates come on and use the statement to basically smear and malign Hillary Clinton and raise all this stuff.

What they never want to deal with is the fact that we have a candidate who is more interested in praising Putin -- he's just -- we no longer have a Trump/Pence ticket, you got a Trump/Putin ticket.


EPSHTEYN: Come on, Van.

DENNARD: Oh, in all diplomacy. Get diplomacy. JONES: You have a nuclear arms threat -- yes, yes. You have a nuclear arm threat against this country and a leader who is manipulating a major candidate for office and they want to talk about Whitewater.


EPSHTEYN: You should probably tell John Kerry that because John Kerry just entered into an agreement with Russia. We just today. The United States today entered into an agreement with Russia on a cease-fire in Syria.

So, Russia if so terrible you should tell President Obama, who you worked for, Van, to not work with Russia.

JONES: Sure.

EPSHTEYN: But he ask just like FDR did, just like JFK did, just like Nixon, Reagan and on and on and on, the United States has worked with Russia, which has been its strength for a long time. So, there is no...


JONES: So, working agreement with a country is not the same as praising a dictator. Reagan never praised Soviet dictators.


EPSHTEYN: You are incorrect.

DENNARD: He worked with them, Van. He worked with them and...

EPSHTEYN: He's praised Gorbachev as. Reagan and Margaret Thatcher both praise Gorbachev.

[22:35:09] LEMON: OK. I want Bob to give the last word.

JONES: Because -- hold on a second.

BECKEL: Yes, I would say, look, there were 28 hearings on Benghazi and Hillary Clinton got through that and there was no way the committee could do anything. Bill Clinton was the second President of the United States' history that was impeached. And he was laughed at the United States Senate because it's republican, the right wing they're after.

They have been, I mean, Hillary Clinton has been on the defensive every day she's been in public life and you wonder why there was some trust problems.

EPSHTEYN: Because she committed so many times. That's why...


LEMON: One at a time. One at a time. BECKEL: But you better be careful before you say things like that. I think you're a decent guy but you should not say somebody commits a crime.

LEMON: And you should be careful that she's committed a crime because -- but hold on, hold on. This is something that you have to be clear about, OK.


LEMON: Especially as a network. She's not been convicted of any crime.

EPSHTEYN: Doesn't mean she didn't commit them.

LEMON: She's been accused of committing a crime.

BECKEL: Oh, come on.

EPSHTEYN: I'll give you an example.

LEMON: Boris, Boris...

BECKEL: You sound like Joe McCarthy now.

LEMON: Hold on, Bob. I have to be accurate here as a journalist and CNN as a network. She has not been convicted of any crime. You cannot say she committed.


LEMON: You can say -- you cannot say she committed.


DENNARD: But, Don, what we can say...

EPSHTEYN: Let me give you an example without bob yelling in my ear. On March 2nd of 2015, the New York Times ran a story that she had a home server. On March 3rd, there was a preservation letter, on March 4th, there was a subpoena, in late March 2015, people connected her...


LEMON: Boris, I understand that, Boris, I understand that. Boris, I understand that. When you can say someone has a crime is when they have been convicted...

DENNARD: That is incorrect.

LEMON: Yes, it is.

EPSHTEYN: You can say they committed. That's what a prosecutor would do.

LEMON: Yes, it is. EPSHTEYN: No.

LEMON: Yes it is, Boris.

EPSHTEYN: I would agree or disagree. Boris, it's called a fact.

EPSHTEYN: Don, I'm a lawyer. You're not a prosecutor.

LEMON: I know.

EPSHTEYN: Or can absolutely say someone committed a crime.

LEMON: Just because you're a lawyer doesn't mean you're accurate.

EPSHTEYN: I am. OK. Check the law books.

BECKEL: You know, Boris, can I say one thing.

EPSHTEYN: Yes. Check the law books.

LEMON: Anyways, so far -- stand by, Bob.

BECKEL: I could suggest that Donald Trump committed crime but I won't do it because I can't...



EPSHTEYN: Well, plenty of democrats...

LEMON: Hold on, can we stand by?

So, for the sake of this network Hillary Clinton has been accused of crimes, has not been convicted. So, it is not fair to say that she has committed crimes. OK. We will be right back.

BECKEL: That's right.

LEMON: Donald Trump, by the way, not the only one making who's controversial statements tonight. So, is Hillary Clinton. We'll play that when we come back.


LEMON: All right. We're back now. Boris is here, Paris, Van, and Bob Beckel. Anyway, Van, Donald Trump wasn't the only one making questionable statements tonight. Listen to Secretary Clinton at a fund-raiser here in New York.


HILLARY CLINTON, (D) U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: To be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump's supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right?


The racist, sexists, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, you name it. But that other basket of people are people who feel the government has let them down, the economy has let them down, nobody cares about them.


LEMON: So, you know, Donald Trump made a statement about shooting people in the heart, right? So, should she have made that statement, basket of deplorables, racist, sexist, Van Jones?

JONES: Well, look, I think she was trying to do something good but I think she bobbled it there. I don't think she should say half. There certainly are some strains and people who are part of the Trump movement have been frustrated by this strain of xenophobia, racism, et cetera, some of

But I wouldn't say half. There are those elements. I think she was trying to say something that's actually good, which is that the legitimate concerns of a lot of people who have been let down by the economy and have been let down by the government and have been let down by the elites have found expression both in the Sanders campaign and in the Trump campaign.

And I think it's important for the democrats to stop demonizing the entire Trump movement and saying that they're all, you know, bigots and deplorable, but it's not that much better to say half of them are.

LEMON: Paris.

JONES: But she's moving in the right direction, she needs to move a lot faster.

LEMON: Paris, you don't think that's what she's saying?

DENNARD: That is -- I applaud Van. That is some incredible spin right there. There's no way that anybody listening to Secretary Clinton can take anything from the fact that she was totally out of line in attacking good-hearted Americans for supporting somebody that they believe like Mr. Trump.

I think she owes me an apology, she owes Boris an apology, and the thousands, if not millions of Americans who the good hearted people who have a simple disagreement with the direction of the country, they don't want to go down to have another term of Barack Obama and by electing Hillary Clinton. They want to make America great again for everyone by electing Donald Trump. We're not racist, we're not sexist.

BECKEL: Paris.


EPSHTEYN: They start losing and they're getting there.

LEMON: Bob, go ahead. BECKEL: Let me say on the other side that Donald Trump says that

Hillary Clinton and her supporters don't mind rapists and murderers coming in from Mexico. Of course we do and we're not for that.


EPSHTEYN: I didn't hear him say that.

BECKEL: Just a second. Let me say something in defense of Trump here. This may come as a surprise to you. But I think that when Hillary Clinton's campaign manager Robby Mook said that Donald Trump -- the question is whether he's a puppet of the Russians, now that is going way over the line. That is wrong.

I don't believe that for a second. And I think that we on our side and I think Van made this point very well, we have to be very careful that we don't let this campaign get into things that are -- I mean, that kind of statement, that's treason you're talking about here.

That's not -- it has no place in presidential politics. The last thing I'll say -- the last thing I'll say to Boris is in your honor I went through 143 polls tonight, and I got to tell you one thing, you're right. This race is tightened and it's all Hillary Clinton backing down. Donald Trump in the state of Ohio has 41, 41, 42, 41, 40, 39, 41, 42.

EPSHTEYN: That's a lot of numbers, Bob.

BECKEL: She is -- huh?

LEMON: Let him finish his point then you can go ahead. Go ahead, Bob.

BECKEL: But my point is if you go through Ohio, and Pennsylvania and Michigan, Trump's numbers have not moved. He's hit a ceiling. She's come back and at 50 some percent negative, I'm not surprised he has.

[22:45:01] The problem that Donald Trump has, you have to stop selectively picking out polls like CNN. Go and look at them by the thousands.

EPSHTEYN: It's your polls, Bob. You're employed by CNN.

LEMON: Let him respond, Bob.

EPSHTEYN: Hold on, hold on.

BECKEL: I'm picking my own poll.

LEMON: Yes. Let him respond.

EPSHTEYN: That was CNN's poll, right? But here's the larger issue. The larger issue is that if you look at what's going on in this race, Hillary Clinton is absolutely losing momentum. And she is losing. And that's why she's going unhinged like today.

That's what happening. The Clintons start losing and -- let me finish, Bob. The Clintons start losing and they get angry. That's what happened in '08, that's why they became extremely racial against Barack Obama saying he should have been carrying their coffee, their bags...


BECKEL: Can you ever have a civilized conversation on facts here?

EPSHTEYN: I'm talking. I don't understand what you're doing.

LEMON: Quickly. make it finish.

EPSHTEYN: So, the bottom is that the Clintons are upset, she's losing and she's frankly losing it while doing so.

LEMON: All right. Go ahead, Bob, do you want to respond?

BECKEL: All right. Let me just say. I think that's a gross statement to make, but leaving that aside, I admitted to you she's backing up. The key point here is that Trump has not moved up at all. She has come back down.


EPSHTEYN: The CNN poll that came out on Monday.

LEMON: Boris.

BECKEL: Wait a second. And wait a minute, Boris. There was a 79,000 sample poll done by The Washington Post. Now, in Texas there were 3,000 people polled. The margin of error was almost zero. She's tied with him. In Texas...


EPSHTEYN: So, are you saying that she's going to win Texas, bob? You know that's not going to happen.

BECKEL: NO, I don't think she's going to win Texas.

EPSHTEYN: We're going to carry Texas.

DENNARD: And that's irrelevant.

EPSHTEYN: And we're going to win Ohio, and Florida, and Pennsylvania.

BECKEL: No, you're not -- you're not going to win Ohio but leaving that aside, if you look at the polls...


LEMON: OK. That's going to have to be it. You guys will be back next hour and we'll continue our discussion.

EPSHTEYN: OK. LEMON: Thank you, everyone. Van Jones, stick around. The firestorm over Colin Kaepernick's national anthem protest shows no signs of dying down. We're going to talk about it when we come right back.


LEMON: NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick's silent protest of the national anthem is spreading but so is the controversy around it.

Van Jones is back with me. And joining me now is Ben Ferguson, the host of the ben Ferguson show. Hello, Ben. Welcome, Van.

Ben, the reaction to Colin Kaepernick's refusal to stand during a national anthem was very swift. First, a lot of fans trash him, burned his football jersey, while at the same time jersey became the number one seller. What was your response?

BEN FERGUSON, THE BEN FERGUSON SHOW HOST: I'm not surprise by this that obviously there are a lot of people that are going to back him and support him. The big issue now moving forward is you've got the anniversary of 9/11 on Sunday and there are other athletes that are jumping on this.

And the big question is, on a day where we had such an American tragedy where America came together after 9/11, is it appropriate for teams and some of these players to not honor the American flag and the men and women that have served this country? That's my thing.

I also am really disappointed in the NFL. The NFL has rules for all of their players with what they can say, what they can wear, when they can have a tie on. They get fined for everything. Celebrations, talking negatively about the commissioner. They should have a rule that if you want to play in the NFL, you're going to honor the American flag.

If you want to do whatever you want to do outside of that politically that's fine. But while you're wearing this uniform and you're on our field, we're going to honor America and or veterans. And I think they should enforce that and they haven't. It's embarrassing.

LEMON: Van, if you don't stand and you kneel, does that mean that you're not respectful of 9/11 or of the troops or of the country?

JONES: You know, I don't think so. Part of the thing is that, you know, we seem to be very interested in the symbols of patriotism, the symbols of love of country but what about the substance of love of country?

I think what you have to applaud all these young athletes for is talking about the substance of, you know, what are we doing, how are we falling short of being a more perfect union? Are we really a country where we have liberty and justice for all already or is that an ongoing quest?

It is a form of patriotism to dissent. In fact, that's one of the great things about the country is that we actually honor dissent. It's so interesting to me, in the same year where you have Muhammad Ali, who was the ultimate athlete dissenter, he didn't just want to salute the flag, he refused to be inducted into the army in the middle of the war, and yet, years later he's held up as a hero.

I think we have to recognize patriotism in its many forms. And frankly, when you look at what's going on in some of these communities, the fact that young athletes are raising this human cry, the patriotic response is to listen to them, not to lecture them about how they should express their feelings.

LEMON: Ben, you take offense to that. Do you think that there is some sort of contradiction there or some sort of hypocrisy when, you know, I think that you were a fan of the Tea Party, when its, you know, get out of government, get out of my business or politically -- political correctness?

This is -- is this not a form of political correctness to say that everyone should behave a certain way and everyone should stand up and do the same thing at the same time?

FERGUSON: Let me be clear. I have no problem with any players on their own time doing and saying what they want to do. If they want to go out and join Black Lives Matter, more power to them. If they want to go out and stand up for these things.

But when you're on the football field and you're in a situation where there's people that are there, that are there on the high notes of this country to enjoy a football game in America and in that moment it's very simple.

We're honoring those who have fallen, those who fight and defend this country, those that protect those football players and protect those stadiums, and especially on the anniversary of 9/11.

What I would say is just be mindful of that. To these athletes, I think that their message would go a lot farther if they realize this Sunday on the anniversary of 9/11 is not the time to make yourself the center point of attention. It should be on those that have fought and died for this country. Those that died on 9/11 that didn't wear a uniform, those that died in the Twin Towers.

It's not a time to bring up this controversy. And I also say this, a lot of people do not have the right to go out and have protest when they're in their work uniform at their place of work. You were reprimanded for that. You do it on your own time.

And the NFL should be accountable for this. Because they will fine guys for not wearing a tie, not showing up for a press conference, for celebrating in a unique way on the field.

[22:55:07] They should have rules that if you're on -- if you're going to play in the NFL, you're going to honor the country at this at the (Inaudible) and be respectful.

JONES: But, Ben.

LEMON: Go ahead, Van.

JONES: I just don't understand the relationship between playing a football game and being compelled and forced to express your patriotism in a particular way. I just don't -- I mean, I just don't understand...


FERGUSON: You're not for it. Well, here's my thing. I don't think that you're force...


JONES: But you're advocating to do force to do something.

FERGUSON: No, it's not force. You have the choice to play in the NFL or not play in the NFL. You can play anywhere you want to.

JONES: Sure. But there's zero relationship between playing a game and being forced to express your patriotism in the way that you say is patriotic. And part of the thing I think is interesting here is that the deep patriot -- dissent is not cheap patriotism.

Cheap patriotism is standing up because you're supposed to. Cheap patriotism is wearing a flag pin because you're going to get in trouble if you don't. It's deep patriotism to reflect on the shortcomings. And to say, listen.


FERGUSON: But, Van, here's what I want to say.

JONES: I am sending up a signal. I am sending up the signal that you're not there yet and I want to see -- I want to see a...

LEMON: Go quick, I got to -- I got to go to the...


FERGUSON: Ben, personally, I have a lot of respect for you. Because you are someone that actively protests and have been consistent throughout your career. I would say this is protest being the center of attention by these players who have never been involved in any type of protest before they were the center of attention on national TV, wearing a uniform and grand standing during an NFL game.

If they want my respect, have the guts to do this on your own time. They're nowhere to be seen. That's called cheap protesting. That's another problem. Because I don't think there's much of this is really genuine because they haven't shown up for the protest that you've even been part of.

I would have more respect for these players if they were out on the street with you and in another place in Ferguson. I would respect...

LEMON: Ben, I'll leave you with this thought, though. And I do have to go and you know I'll have you back.


LEMON: But that old saying if a tree falls in the wood if they do it -- if they do it on their own time then...


FERGUSON: They would be covered, they're players.

LEMON: But still, they wouldn't have the attention and that's part of the -- isn't that part of the thing is to get the attention so that they can make a difference.

This happens to be their particular platform. And what is wrong with standing up in your platform regardless whether you agree with them or not, they may take the fall. Let me finish. They may actually take the fall for doing this and that's part of being an American. You can do what you want but you also take the criticism and you have to suffer the circumstances. What's wrong with that?

FERGUSON: I would say show -- show me a picture of Colin Kaepernick, show me a picture of the guy for the Broncos last night that -- of a picture of them actually using this as a plateau for another platform to do it outside that stadium. They're nowhere to be found.

LEMON: Thank you. I'm way over. Thank you, guys. I appreciate it. We'll be back.


LEMON: We'll be right back.