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Donald Trump Holds Rally with Mike Pence; Interview with Congressman Jeb Hensarling. Aired 8-8:30a ET

Aired December 2, 2016 - 08:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: -- Trump at his first really since the election. He was delivering an American first message and bringing back some of the fiery rhetoric used on the campaign trail.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: And then there was this. They ad-libbed his pick for defense secretary. Retired Marine General James Mattis, a highly respected commander, but whose nomination does come with a serious legal hurdle. As for today the president-elect has a day full of meetings to fill more posts. We have this all covered for you. Let's begin with our Phil Mattingly live in Cincinnati. Good morning, Phil.

PHIL MATTINGLY: Good morning John. There were bold promises, there were no shortages of attack lines, and, yes, there even some airing of grievances. It sounded a lot last night like president-elect Trump was still candidate Trump, and frankly for good reason. According to him, he won.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENT-ELECT: Our victory was so great, we have the House, we have the Senate, and we have the presidency.

MATTINGLY: President-elect Donald Trump saying thank you, and I told you so.

TRUMP: Remember, you cannot get to 270 with a dishonest press.

MATTINGLY: Returning to the stage where he appears most comfortable in delivering an unmistakable message. The unconventional candidate who won a stunning victory three weeks ago is here to stay.

TRUMP: I love this stuff. Should I go on with this a little bit longer?

(APPLAUSE)

MATTINGLY: The president-elect boasting about breaking Hillary Clinton's blue wall.

TRUMP: We didn't break it. We shattered that sucker. That poor wall is busted up.

(APPLAUSE)

MATTINGLY: Taking a jab at his former opponent while firing up the crowd with some red meat.

TRUMP: We did have a lot of fun fighting Hillary, didn't we?

(APPLAUSE)

MATTINGLY: But also calling for unity, a deeply divided nation after a contentious election.

TRUMP: We condemn bigotry and prejudice in all of its forms. We denouce all of the hatred and we forcefully reject the language of exclusion and separation. We're going to come together. We have no choice. We have to, and it's better.

MATTINGLY: Trump stressing the populist message that won him the White House.

TRUMP: From now on it's going to be America first, OK?

MATTINGLY: While doubling down on key campaign promises.

TRUMP: We are repealing and replacing Obamacare.

(APPLAUSE)

TRUMP: We will finally end illegal immigration. We have to. We will construct great wall at the border.

MATTINGLY: And veering off script to break big news about his own cabinet.

TRUMP: I want to save the suspense for next week. And don't let it outside of this room.

MATTINGLY: Trump announcing that the has selected retired Marine general James Mattis as his secretary of defense.

TRUMP: "Mad Dog" Mattis. They say he's the closest thing to General George Patton that we have, and it's about time.

MATTINGLY: While defending the other wealthy cabinet picks he's made so far.

TRUMP: He knows how to make money. I've been honest. I've said I'm going to be putting on the greatest killers you have ever seen.

MATTINGLY: The raucous rally coming on the heels of Trump's victory lap at the Carrier plant in Indiana.

TRUMP: Companies are not going to leave the United States anymore without consequences. Not going to happen.

MATTINGLY: The president-elect touting the deal, spearheaded by his running mate, the current governor of Indiana, to keep nearly 1,000 jobs in the States.

MIKE PENCE, (R) VICE PRESIDENT ELECT: Carrier chose to stay in Indiana because America chose to make Donald Trump the next president of the United States.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MATTINGLY: And John, an interesting element to keep an eye on in the weeks ahead, and the Mattis decision, the announcement that he's going to be secretary of defense, he's technically not eligible to serve as secretary of defense. He's only been retired for three years. U.S. law requires him for to be retired for seven years.

Now, Trump transition officials I've spoken to say they don't think they're going to have any problem getting a waiver from Capitol Hill and with good reasons on that. But a lot of top lawmakers have already come out and supported this pick, Democrats and Republicans alike. However, keep an eye on one in particular. Kirsten Gillibrand, senator from New York, key voice in the Democratic caucus, within an hour last night of this announcement being made put out a statement of her own saying she would oppose the waiver, saying civilian control of the military is a principle of American democracy. She's the only one so far. But it's worth noting that that is an important issue and others may come out in the days ahead. John?

BERMAN: Phil Mattingly, thanks so much.

I want to discuss this with Texas Congressman Jeb Hensarling. He is the chair of the House financial services committee. Mr. Chairman, thanks so much for being with us.

REP. JEB HENSARLING, (R) TEXAS: Good morning.

BERMAN: You have a unique opportunity here. Usually the House, you don't get to vote on cabinet picks. This time around you're going to have to decide whether or not General Mattis should receive a waiver so he can serve as secretary of defense. Do you favor granting this waiver?

[08:05:00] HENSARLING: Well, the first I heard of the issue, frankly, was this morning. And what I know about the general is all good, a stellar reputation. I think it's important that the president-elect have the people around him who can execute his plan to help make America great again. So I would lean very much in favor. But I will admit part of being a member of the Congress is to listen to the debate. I'd be happy to listen to others. But the general's already been out of uniform for three years. I know the current statute says seven, but I would lean very heavily in favor of giving the president- elect the people he needs to execute his plan and his vision.

BERMAN: Let's talk about something that's a little more in your financial services alley, which is the Carrier deal. Donald Trump went to Carrier yesterday. He was touting this deal apparently which includes $7 million in tax breaks from the state of Indiana, and also I don't know about a week or nod for future considerations from the federal government. In the past, sir, you've been very critical of singling out companies or industries for assistance like this. During the auto bailout, you said "I don't know why we're specifically helping the auto industry as opposed to the airline as opposed to some other industry." So do you have concern about Carrier? HENSARLING: I didn't say that. Number one, I'm a federal legislator. These are the citizens of Indiana. This is what the citizens of Indiana want to do, bully for them. But to me the most important takeaways is that American business now knows that they're going to have a president and vice president that cares about business staying in America. The economic plan of beatings will continue until morale improves, that is over with.

BERMAN: But Mr. Chairman, you're on the record being concerned with picking favorites, also on other issues. On the export/import bank you specifically say you're against giving trades to big corporations.

HENSARLING: I see no parallel because, number one, I'm a federal legislator. What the citizens of Indiana do, you need to interview Governor Mike Pence about this particular plan. The federal tax payer were not involved in this.

But I think the other lesson is, what it says is that taxes make a big difference in whether or not jobs stay in America. And I know that president-elect Trump, vice president-elect Pence are going to give us a competitive tax code to help keep jobs in America.

And the other thing about ex-im is there's no evidence that ex-im on net creates any American job because when they help a job in the export arena, they also hurt a domestic job. So I think all in all it appears to be good news. I don't know all the details, but I'm here to protect the federal taxpayer, and I think it's a huge lesson that taxes are too high and it's one of the main reasons that jobs go overseas.

I appreciate the fact that we have a president who cares about keeping jobs in America.

BERMAN: And I do understand, this is something you think a lot about. This is really your area of expertise and I do understand the difference between state and federal rules.

HENSARLING: It's written in the instrument.

BERMAN: But the "Wall Street Journal" which is a national paper is concerned about this deal. This sort of provide as roadmap now, does it not, for other companies to say, hey, we want to get money from a state or perhaps considering from the federal government down the line? Part of how this deal was made apparently, I don't know if it was a threat or an implicit threat or a direct threat, you know United Technologies has a lot of business with the Pentagon.

HENSARLING: Listen, you used the word can be "apparently," so you're painting scenarios. I don't know the facts are. I believe very much, I believe the president shares this vision. He doesn't believe in cronyism. I've been fighting that my whole career, either earmarks, bridge to nowhere, the bailout. I opposed the bailout for the big banks. I oppose ex-im as a subsidy, I opposed corporate welfare. But what I do know is high levels and complex taxation sends jobs overseas, period, paragraph. So I think it is good that we can lower taxes and keep jobs in

America. Some of this other speculation, I don't know because I don't know the details of the plan, but all in all the bottom line, keeping jobs in America, that starts out being a very good thing.

BERMAN: Very good for those 1,000 people who jobs do stay in America, no question about that. Speaker Ryan gave an interview to "60 Minutes" when he talked a little bit about his complicated past with the president-elect but also the future. Let's listen to a little bit of that.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. PAUL RYAN, (R) SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES: We're not looking back. We're looking forward. We actually, like I said, we speak about every day that it's not about looking back at the past. That's behind us. We're way beyond that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: This is like a Republican Christmas right now, Mr. Chairman. You're going to be able to get a lot done. What's first on your play?

HENSARLING: What we have to do is we have to get America working again for working Americans. We need economic growth for all. We need bailouts for none. And in order to do that, we're going to have to get rid of the Dodd/Frank act which is many cases was frankly a triumph of ideology over compassion and over good economics. Because of Dodd/Frank we've seen free checking at banks cut in half and working Americans need their checking accounts to pay their health care premiums.

[08:10:06] We've seen credit cards go up two percentage points. People need credit cards to buy their groceries. Some auto loans have gone up $500, and then small business lending is at a 25-year low. We need capital to circulate in this economy if we're going to get to four percent economy growth. Under two percent economic growth, what we have are stagnant paychecks, diminished bank accounts, and small dreams. And so what we have to do is repeal and replace Dodd/Frank.

We have the choice act that has passed out of my committee. We're going to bring it to the next Congress. And what it says is we're going to substitute private capital for federal control, loss- absorbing private capital, but we want free markets. We want competitive markets, we want market discipline. The day of bailouts are gone. We're getting out of the bailout business. We're getting into the economic growth business, and America is going to get working again. So getting rid of Dodd/Frank has got to be priority number one. You have to have tax reform, you have to have regulatory reform, but you have to have capital circulating. You got to get rid of Dodd/Frank.

BERMAN: Mr. Chairman, we know you are excited to get to work on that subject.

HENSARLING: I'm very excited. BERMAN: We appreciate your time this morning. Always a pleasure.

HENSARLING: Thank you. Thank you.

BERMAN: Donald Trump is set to meet with one Democratic senator today, and another as a possible contender for a cabinet post. Is this part of a strategy to get red state Democrats out of Congress? We're going to discuss, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[08:15:12] ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Donald Trump reviving his promises about immigration, including his famous pledge to build the wall. This was at his first rally after the election.

So, take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT-ELECT: We will finally end illegal immigration. Have to. We will construct a great wall at the border, dismantle the criminal cartels, and liberate or communities from the epidemic of gang violence and drugs pouring into our nation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAMEROTA: OK. So, what should Americans expect to happen next?

Joining us now, Congressman Luis Gutierrez. He's a Democrat from Illinois and a member of the House Judiciary Committee.

Congressman, thanks for being here.

REP. LUIS GUTIERREZ (D), ILLINOIS: Good morning, Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: You know, there's been a lot of talk on when to take Trump literally. So, do you believe, as you stand there today, that he will be building a wall across the entire southern border?

GUTIERREZ: Here's what I do believe, that he started his campaign by saying that Mexicans were murderers, rapists, by criminalizing our communities. And when he said Mexicans, I mean, in the parlance of American politics, he meant Latinos, and criminalized us (ph). I mean, criminalized my 13-year-old grandson and every other young Latino male in this country.

So, here's what I have to say: I heard that. I think the American public heard that. What did he say? He's going to build and wall and that all crime and all gangs and everything comes from Mexico and from Latinos. That's what I heard.

That's why, you know, Alisyn, you know, I've been to, let me see, two Clinton inaugurations, I've been to two of them for Bush, two of them for Obama. I'm not going to this inauguration. I can't go to this inauguration, because he continues to spew hatred, bigotry and prejudice, even after he said he was going to bring us all together, he was going to unify, but he's not. He continues to spew this kind of just hatred.

And so, I'm not going to be there. I told my wife, you know, I'm not going, honey. And she said, oh, yeah, we're going. We're going to the march and were going to march for $15 an hour, we're going to march with women for their rights, we're going to march for the LGBT community.

She said, we're going to go to the inauguration, except we'll be out there marching, protesting and lifting our voices for an America. We're not going to allow them to simply turn back the clock.

I'm 63 years old in another week. I was born in 1953. I don't want to turn back the clock to when women were in the kitchen and gays were in the closet, and people like me and immigrants and migrants to this community, we're told to be quite and couldn't have a voice.

Too many people march and protested. And we created a society in which there were new voices added to it. And I think he just want to squash those voices.

CAMEROTA: Congressman, I can't help but hear your passion in everything you just said, as well as see you body language about how upset you are. I don't have to remind you, obviously, Democrats are now in the minority, in the House, in the Senate, in the governors' mansions.

So, beyond marching, what can you do with that anger that you're feeling?

GUTIERREZ: Yes, there is anger, but we're going to use it constructively. We're going to -- look, we have a minority president of the United States of America. The fact is that Hillary Clinton received 2.5 million more votes and counting. I'm not going to allow the minority president of the United States to simply turn back the clock and me not say anything.

Alisyn, for me, too many people gave up their lives, gave up their freedom, risked so much so that I can't have a voice today in the America of today. Not the America I was born into in 1953 when separate but equal was the law of the land, but the America today. So, I'm going to work with broader groups.

So, here's what I think we need to do. I think be need to all of us say, hey, labor movement, you better talk to the LBGT community. LBGT community, you better talk to the women's community. Women's community, let's talk to the environmentalists. Immigrants, whether you're from Poland, or whether you're from Mexico or the Philippines, from anywhere in the world, let's keep that immigrant tradition alive and let's talk to one another.

Because in the end, Alisyn, we constitute a majority of people that had a vote this past election. We may not have elected the president of the United States, but we are the majority. We need to make sure that in this country, we are fighting.

[08:20:03] Because what is the basis of everything that I've been given in this country? Because people fought for me, even when it looked dark, even when it looked gloomy.

So, look, I have been given so much. Last night, I was on a call, Alisyn, with over 10,000 people. And you know what I heard? I heard people that are really afraid. They're afraid somebody is going to knock on their door and that young people, 725,000 young people who we said come out of the shadows, register with the government, go through a criminal background check, and register to the government.

And here's what we're going to give you, we're going to give you a work permit, a Social Security card so you can go to school, because you can prosper in this country, because we see you as an American in everything but a piece of paper.

And Donald Trump says he's going to go after them. That he's going to revoke DACA, and he's going to take away their freedom in this country and they're afraid.

So, guess what? I cannot go to an inauguration of a man who's going to appoint people to the Supreme Court and turn back the clock on women, and turn back the clock on immigrant and the safety and freedom that we fought for them.

CAMEROTA: Congressman Gutierrez, thank you very much for sharing your thoughts.

GUTIERREZ: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Nice to talk with you.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: All right. Unlike the congressman, they all supported Trump all the way, the support not wavering one little bit. We sit down with a group of longtime Trump supporters, what do they think about the carrier deal, what do they think about possible conflicts of interest that Trump has between his government work and his business interest?

Their answers are going to surprise you. That's next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[08:25:31] CAMEROTA: During the course of the presidential campaign, we spoke with lots of Donald Trump supporters to hear why they felt so passionately about him. So, this week, we circled back with some of them.

Now, these are not man on the street interviews with random voters. These are plugged-in people who have been in and around New Hampshire politics for year and never felt more energized.

John Hikel who you see on the left of your screen, and Paula Johnson, they are former New Hampshire state representatives. Susan DeLemus, who you see on the right, is still one of the 400 part-time members of the New Hampshire House of Representative. Her term ends Tuesday.

Johnson, in the middle there, was also a convention delegate for Trump's campaign, DeLemus was an alternate.

So, we spoke to them on Wednesday before details of the Carrier deal came out, but they already had strong feelings about it as well as any potential conflicts of interest in the Trump administration.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SUSAN DELEMUS (R), NEW HAMPSHIRE STATE REPRESENTATIVE: The headline today was that Mr. Trump has made a company that was thinking about going to Mexico able to stay here in the United States, want to stay here in the United States.

CAMEROTA: Carrier. You're referring to Carrier.

DELEMUS: Yes, yes, Carrier, yes.

CAMEROTA: Carrier Air Conditioner are going to keep 1,000 of their jobs here in Indiana. Some will go to Mexico, but 1,000 workers will stay here, that's a coup.

We don't know that much about the deal. What they were offered in order to keep the jobs here.

Do you want to know more about that?

PAUL DIBARTOLO, TRUMP SUPPORTER: You know, from the beginning, Donald Trump had said that he was going to make fantastic deals and he was going to persuade companies to invest in America and invest in the American people, OK? He's proven that early on.

CAMEROTA: So, if they were given some sort of financial inducement to stay here -- let's say they were subsidized somehow, would that bother you?

DIBARTOLO: No, it wouldn't bother me. The key right now and Trump's primary focus is putting the American people first. That's all he cares about. Trump in a lot of ways reminds me about a hero of mine which is General Patton, OK? I think since World War II, there hasn't been a hero for America like Patton was and I think Trump is the new hero for America.

CAMEROTA: But, John, if there were some sort of subsidy given. If there were, I thought the free market didn't pick winners and losers. Remember that?

JOHN HIKEL (R), FORMER NEW HAMPSHIRE STATE REPRESENTATIVE: Yes, I remember that well. I think a lot of businesses and things that we do in this country are subsidized, from petroleum to many companies, government contracts.

CAMEROTA: Of course. But why did it bother you when the Obama administration chose, say, Solyndra, and electric car companies, but not if there was a subsidy given to keep a company here.

HIKEL: I think they threw that money away with Solyndra. I think it was a bad investment. I think it was a bad deal.

CAMEROTA: So, that's what you didn't like about it. You thought it was a bad investment and not that it was subsidized.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It has proven to be bad --

(CROSSTALK)

CAMEROTA: It has proven to be a bad -- but before people knew. Before they went bankrupt. There were lots of conservatives who were upset that they were getting subsidies. What's happened to that feeling?

HIKEL: I think -- they're blocking out the fact that most of the things we have here are subsidized anyway.

CAMEROTA: So, are you as conservatives okay with that? The subsidies?

DIBARTOLO: No subsidizing. I can almost guarantee you he wasn't subsidizing the Carrier company.

HIKEL: Drive throughout these towns throughout the country and there are empty factories everywhere that we should have -- somebody should have taken the initiative to save those companies and have them stay here instead of moving.

CAMEROTA: Conflicts of interest. So, Mr. Trump has something like 144 businesses all around the world. Does anyone have any concern that that will complicate his dealings in the White House?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not at all.

DIBARTOLO: He has a family that, I mean, when you look at these folks. When you look at his kids, talk about raised right. He's going to release the business interest to them, OK, because they're totally capable. So, there's not going to be a conflict of interest because he's not going to be directly involved.

CAMEROTA: OK. But just -- help me understand this, substitute the word Ivanka for Chelsea Clinton. And if Chelsea Clinton were going to be running the Clinton Global Initiative or the Clinton Foundation, why would that have bothered you if Hillary had won? Why would that have been a conflict of interest?

DELEMUS: Because Chelsea is the product of government. She is the product of parents who have done nothing but make money off of the people and in government and in politics.

CAMEROTA: Well, they made money after he left the presidency, and he sold books and he gave speeches. Donald Trump has made money from selling books --

DELEMUS: They're never been in politics, and they've never used -- he's never had political background.

CAMEROTA: Why is it that you're totally comfortable with Donald Trump's family being able to have these other business interests that we deal with in terms of the U.S. policy and that's OK, but it wouldn't be OK for Bill and Chelsea Clinton to have the same deal?

HIKEL: Because Mr. Trump has disclosed hl so-called conflicts around the world.

CAMEROTA: How?

HIKEL: Well, by coming out and saying that he owns some of the best real estate and some of the best businesses in the world.

CAMEROTA: You don't know exactly what the level of connection is to some of these places.

HIKEL: And what's the purpose of releasing his taxes anyway?