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CUOMO PRIME TIME
Interview with Antonio Sabato Jr; Interview with Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz; Discussion on Incivility in America; Interview with Draymond Green. Aired 9-10p ET
Aired June 25, 2018 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Thank you, Anderson.
I am Chris Cuomo and welcome to PRIME TIME.
A Democratic congresswoman called for a shame campaign against Trump administration officials, and we are seeing intense protests of the same even in private places. But the president seems to love this. Why? We'll tell you.
Tonight, we have a man who says he, too, has been blacklisted for his support of President Trump. Actor-turned-congressional candidate Antonio Sabato, Jr. joins us tonight.
Plus, it's a new week but the crisis ongoing at the border has not changed. What is it like inside those housing facilities where they won't let the media be your eyes and ears? Well, guess what. We have a lawmaker on the show who just got a look at what's happening in Florida.
And a world champion basketball star with a lot to say about the political climate in America. We have him here tonight. Golden State Warrior Draymond Green.
It's 9:00 p.m. in the East, the new happy hour according to one of our fans. So, what do you say? Let's get after it.
CUOMO: Administration officials being heckled. A Democrat calling for more and the president saying she better watch out. What is going on?
Let's ask one of the people who wants to step right into the middle of this. He's one of President Trump's Hollywood supporters and he is running for Congress in a heavily Democratic district in California, Antonio Sabato Jr. Very familiar face.
Let's get after it. It is good to have you here with us, sir.
ANTONIO SABATO, JR. (R), CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE: Thank you, Chris. Thank you very much.
CUOMO: So, what's your diagnosis of the situation, what we see with Maxine Waters, the people who are showing up and going at Trump officials and others in power who are seen as Trump friendlies, saying we're not going to take it anymore, we're coming for you?
SABATO: Yes. Maxine Waters, I call her the "hustler of hate", promoting hate and division and actually attacking the administration or anybody who is involved with this administration. That's unheard of. She should be put behind bars and throw away the key.
I mean, look what she's done for her constituents.
CUOMO: Hold on. You think Maxine Waters should be arrested?
SABATO: Yes. Should definitely be arrested.
CUOMO: For what?
SABATO: For all the crime that she's done in her neighborhood.
She makes millions of dollars, lives in Beverly Hills, her constituents are dying on the street, are homeless all over the place, and she's walking away saying like everything is OK, our neighbors are fine. Why don't you go live in your neighborhood? Why don't you go live and surround yourself with your community and help them physically? Be there, surround yourself, like I'm doing in Ventura County for 15 years.
That's what people in Congress should be like, should be involved with the community 100 percent. She is not, absolutely not. How do you make millions of dollars by making over what $200,000, $250,000 a year maybe? Where is she making all this money?
CUOMO: No, I hear you, Antonio.
SABATO: It's corruption to the max. It's corruption to the max.
CUOMO: I hear you about feeling that the people who represent a district should reflect the district, I get.
SABATO: Yes, they should, absolutely.
CUOMO: We're taking a little look at this situation that we have here, so much anger on both sides. You say you want to get into the process.
CUOMO: I assume your motivation is hopefully to make it better, but that kind of talk -- she should be in jail, even if it's just hyperbole.
SABATO: Yes, she should be.
CUOMO: But you understand there is no crime --
SABATO: I know how you're going change this. Hold on, Chris --
CUOMO: No, I'm not changing it. I'm saying, but you understand what you're saying.
SABATO: I'm just telling you. Hold on, you're asking me a question so I'm going to answer the best way I know how.
I'm very much involved in my community in direct 26. I'm going to win this in November for the American people. This is not about me. I love my country more than anything.
If people in Congress and the Democratic Party would actually put this country and the American flag first, not the president, but the Americans first, this country would be perfect. We'd be worrying about our Americans who are dying on the street.
Our homelessness in Los Angeles, 10,000 people are living on the streets. Nobody is doing anything about it. So, we've got to step up and do more.
CUOMO: So, how do you get more done?
SABATO: And this year, we will.
CUOMO: How do you get more done if you can't work with the other side?
SABATO: The president has done a lot.
CUOMO: Antonio, let me -- I'm not talking about the president right now. I'm talking about you.
CUOMO: And the ability to work with the other side is going to have to require a return to civility. What Maxine Waters is saying. I get that there's outrage from people who like what she's saying and there's outrage from people who don't like what she is saying, but there is a reason that she said what she said. The why matters here because of what's being said on the other side, right?
SABATO: No, no, hold on --
CUOMO: There's so much hostility. Look what you just said my friend. She should be in jail. You said Obama and Hillary Clinton should be in jail.
SABATO: Mm-hmm. Yes.
CUOMO: You've said a lot of provocative things that don't make anything better. How is that a good solution?
SABATO: I didn't leave -- I didn't leave my people to die in Benghazi. I didn't do that. I support our military. So, that's my opinion --
CUOMO: What does that mean?
(CROSSTALK) SABATO: I'm not going to go on a press conference, Chris, and tell everyone to attack or do anything against --
CUOMO: You are doing a lot of attacking, Antonio, yourself.
SABATO: No, I'm -- I'm attacking right now the socialist party in Sacramento and in Washington, D.C. because I believe that the American flag and our Constitution should be first for people that go to Washington. That's what I believe. God first, too.
CUOMO: How do you put the flag or God first, right? Because God is truth, right?
SABATO: Yes. Amen to that.
CUOMO: So, how do you do that when you say things like this? Let's play something you said not too long ago.
SABATO: Go ahead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SABATO: First of all, I don't believe the guy is a Christian. I don't believe he follows the god that I love and the Jesus that I love. If you understand about Obama, I mean, that's not a Christian name, is it? We had a Muslim president for seven and a half years.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You believe that President Obama is a Muslim, is that what you're saying?
SABATO: Absolutely. Absolutely.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CUOMO: I mean, look, you know that it was not true.
SABATO: I'm going to --
CUOMO: But how is it helpful?
SABATO: Chris, Chris, hold on. First of all, what is wrong with calling anyone a Muslim? Because I don't think there's anything wrong with being a Muslim.
CUOMO: It is when they are not.
SABATO: It was -- it was my --
CUOMO: I'll call you a Muslim. That's not accurate, right?
SABATO: Yes, that's fine. But it's fine. What I'm saying you can call me a Muslim if you want
but I'm not -- I'm not going to use it against you or against me in this case because that's what I said. That was my opinion.
But let's talk about now. Let's talk about today what's going on right now in Los Angeles, in California --
CUOMO: That was just in 2016 during the convention.
SABATO: -- we have $26 billion in immigration we're spending every year.
CUOMO: I get it. But if you want to represent a group of people --
SABATO: That's a lot of stuff.
CUOMO: But if you want to represent a group of people, let alone a district that Clinton won by 22 points.
SABATO: I'm representing the American people. You guys, listen.
CUOMO: Who are you representing by calling Obama a Muslim when it's not true?
SABATO: The American people.
CUOMO: What is that supposed to do?
SABATO: But right now, I'm not talking about that. You're bringing that up.
CUOMO: That's too bad. You said it before. You've got to own it now if you want to be in office.
SABATO: Nobody is perfect. Nobody is perfect. I'm willing to express my opinions and also my mistakes. I shouldn't have responded that way.
CUOMO: So, will you apologize?
SABATO: I did. I also did on "The View" if you remember, if you did your homework but obviously you didn't.
CUOMO: No, I don't remember you saying -- I remember you saying in a transcript he's probably not a Muslim. I understand that. That's not really an apology, right, because you knew he wasn't a Muslim when you said it, right?
SABATO: Well, if there's nothing wrong with calling him a Muslim, I shouldn't apologize for that.
CUOMO: It is when it's a false allegation done to disparage him, to fear hate, and to feed hate --
SABATO: Chris, journalism -- journalism is dead. You should be -- you should be asking questions of journalists, in the middle, in the middle. I'm a Republican but the way you guys attack --
CUOMO: Antonio, how is asking to account for what you said --
SABATO: Why do you take sides? Why do you take sides? I don't understand. Why do you take sides?
CUOMO: What did you mean, it's not true --
SABATO: The American people know what's going on, and you know what? They know what's going on, and this November, they will know even more because they will get people in Congress who are there who love this country.
And there's one thing you can -- you can say whatever you want about me, but I love this nation and I care. I care about my community. I care about my people. I listen to what they want and I'm going to do exactly what they want me to do, not what I want to do. What my community wants me to do.
CUOMO: Do you think they want you to divide people along Christian and Muslim lines and say that people should be in jail?
SABATO: No, I would never do that.
SABATO: Listen, don't change -- don't change the narrative and make it work for you because that's what you guys do best. American people are a lot smarter than that. That's why they don't watch your network.
I'm here to promote something for the American --
CUOMO: So, you came on a network that nobody watches? Why did you do that?
SABATO: Because I wanted to talk to you, I really did. I'm not scared of you guys. I'm not afraid of you guys whatsoever.
CUOMO: You shouldn't be afraid of the truth and coming on to have had a real debate about ideas.
SABATO: You attack people. You attack people and the way you be attack this administration and everyone who is involved with them is disgraceful. You should take -- you should actually go to communion or whatever you want to do and just kind of make peace with the man upstairs because you guys every single day --
CUOMO: You wouldn't go to communion.
CUOMO: Are you a Catholic?
SABATO: You go to penance. Sorry, you go to penance.
CUOMO: Got to check your catechism, my brother. If you're going to use it around somebody else, if you're going to throw big bombs, make sure where to land it.
SABATO: Well, that's right. That's something that you should do because you're doing a lot more than I do every --
CUOMO: I'm helping you out here about understanding your faith. Let me ask you something else --
SABATO: I don't need your help, bro. I don't need your help, Mr. Cuomo, I don't.
CUOMO: You need a little bit of help.
SABATO: Not from you. Never. I will never take any help from you. Yes.
CUOMO: I'm giving you an opportunity.
SABATO: I came here legally.
SABATO: I'm glad.
CUOMO: You're from Italy, you were born there. You came legally.
SABATO: I was born there. Legally, correct.
CUOMO: The problem with the country's immigration system is twofold. You have a legal immigration system and an illegal immigration issue.
SABATO: I'm glad you brought that up.
CUOMO: Do you agree with President Trump about a zero tolerance approach to illegal immigration?
SABATO: You know, when I came here in 1985 and we waited in line for many years and my parents actually ran out of money, because we came here for two years on a green card and we had to go back to Italy. But the first time we came here we worked hard and when we came to the border we had to sign a paper that said, don't take any welfare from this country. That was the good old days.
Now, now when you come here illegally or whatever, you come here and you get free programs that the American people have to pay for. That's wrong, and I think we should take care of the American people -- CUOMO: What if people need help to get here to get a leg up? What if
they need that?
SABATO: What about the American people? What about the American people who do it legally?
CUOMO: But those people are available for American people, too.
SABATO: We have a door -- Chris, Chris, you know what, they don't even have to leave their country. They can if to the United States embassy right there. They don't even have to cross the border.
But you know and I know they are coming here illegally because --
SABATO: -- of human trafficking, they are bringing drugs to this country and bringing it back to their place.
SABATO: This has been going on for way too long.
CUOMO: Some. Agreed. But, you know, I think the some matters. The context matters.
SABATO: Some matters, yes, they do.
CUOMO: Zero tolerance means nobody gets in. Do you agree with the president that border agents should be able to turn everybody back without due process?
SABATO: Listen, there's a lot of people in Europe, millions in people that are waiting to come here all over the world. They want to come here. I get it. I did it the right way.
But we have to follow the law and --
CUOMO: Right. So, I'm saying do you agree?
SABATO: Zero tolerance, come through the door. If I came to your house and I went through the window instead of the door or knocked at the door with all my kids and everybody else and used your house and ate at your dinner table and everything like this, would you call the police or would you have me stay there for three years?
CUOMO: What if you climbed through the window of my house because somebody was chasing with an ax?
SABATO: I wouldn't do that. I would call the police. I would do it some other way --
CUOMO: What if you don't have time to call police? If somebody's chasing with an ax and --
SABATO: It's still illegal.
CUOMO: -- and my window is open? Would you jump in?
SABATO: No, actually, I would take the guy with the ax out and then I would take care of myself. I wouldn't need your house --
CUOMO: What if everybody is not as tough as you and they can't take out a guy with an ax?
SABATO: It's not tough. It's common sense.
CUOMO: You understand what I'm saying?
CUOMO: What I'm saying is not every situation is equal. But I want to get some questions from you on the record. Do you agree with not needing due process before border agents send people back?
SABATO: I think if you cross the border like I repeated myself already, if you cross the border illegally there's a price you've got to pay. If you do it legally through the door, come in legally, then we are -- we are allowing you to be an American citizen at some point. Just do it legally, that's all I'm saying.
CUOMO: So legal immigration coming through what the numbers are. That's one issue. Illegal is another one. We just had this flash point with the separation of kids from their parents as they come across and the mess that has resulted that's going on right now.
Do you agree with what's the president did there?
SABATO: That's awful.
SABATO: Actually, he overwritten that because he wants families to stay together with their kids. This was started by Obama administration because kids --
CUOMO: It was not started by Obama.
SABATO: -- kids were coming here, you know, human traffic and carrying drugs themselves. Listen, we have a border. If we don't have a border, we don't have a country.
CUOMO: Right, what do you do with the kids? Do you separate them from the parents or you keep them not?
SABATO: No, absolutely not. I would never separate -- don't ask me that question. I have kids of my own. I know you're trying to be a smart ass is.
But, listen, I would never allow kids --
CUOMO: The president just separated kids from the family. I asked you endorsed it and went another direction and now you don't like the question. Do you think he did the right thing or the wrong thing?
SABATO: Yes, that's CNN talking.
I don't think the president said that at all, so I disagree with you.
CUOMO: You don't think that the president said to separate kids from families.
SABATO: I don't think the president wants to separate anyone, especially parents and their kids, no.
CUOMO: But he did exactly that with his zero tolerance policy, that's how you got in this mess, Antonio. You must know that as a matter of fact.
SABATO: Well, he followed the law. He didn't make the law, did he?
CUOMO: Right. You follow the law.
SABATO: Did he write the law? So, he's following the law -- if I break the law, I have to pay consequences like you and I and everybody else in this country that is legally here.
CUOMO: How you enforce the law matters, rights? Not everybody who jaywalks gets prosecuted.
SABATO: The immigration situation we know it and you know it and I know it has been broken for a long time. So, we have to start fresh and we have to start talking and making sure that we get a good one in place coming up soon, hopefully after November.
CUOMO: Now, one of the reasons that I wanted you to come on tonight and as your race goes on, you're welcome to come back and I'll tell you why. I don't think it helps you and your race, helps me with my reporting, it helps anybody watching this show if it's always about hostility.
SABATO: No, absolutely not.
CUOMO: If I had hostility towards you, Antonio, you wouldn't have been on the show, right? I decide who goes on and absolutely not.
SABATO: That's about love actually. It's about god and it's about love, it's about taking care of people but it's also about standing firm to the policies that we have and the laws and the Constitution of this country. That's what I'm saying.
CUOMO: That's fine. You can argue your policy. You can argue your faith, but you don't have to attack people for asking the questions. You don't have to attack things that you don't like by insult. (CROSSTALK)
SABATO: Right. Are you talking to yourself right now? It sounds like you should --
CUOMO: I'm talking to you.
SABATO: I think you're talking to yourself --
CUOMO: No, I'm not talking to myself.
SABATO: -- because you guys do that very well. You attack people every single day.
CUOMO: If I'm talking to myself, then I need some kind of different medication. I'm trying to get a point through.
SABATO: I'm not on any medication, brother. I'm drinking some good old-fashioned water.
CUOMO: No, I'm saying I would need medication. Don't be so jumpy.
What I'm saying is we need to be able to have more conversations where instead of attacking me for asking the questions, you answer them, I test them, we go back and forth, people know your ideas, they can make a more informed judgment.
CUOMO: That's what I'm out for it. If you're into that, you're always welcome back here.
SABATO: I'm always in to that. Absolutely, 100 percent.
CUOMO: But you got to know it's coming from a good place. People need information and they need less hostility, you agree on that?
SABATO: Of course, I agree, and hopefully, you can take that to the bank yourself, and keep it right here close to your heart.
CUOMO: I try every damn night. I'll have you back soon.
SABATO: Awesome. Thank you.
CUOMO: Thank you for being on the show. I appreciate it.
SABATO: My pleasure, thank you.
CUOMO: Antonio Sabato Jr., running for Congress in California.
All right. Now, we have a very different perspective. Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida.
Just hours ago, she went to one of these facilities where we can't get in. They do not want the media to be your eyes and ears inside these facilities. Lawmakers can find their own ways in, and look at these kids who have been separated from their parents.
Congresswoman, thank you for being with us.
REP. DEBBIE WASSERMAN SCHULTZ (D), FLORIDA: Thanks, Chris.
CUOMO: Let's start with what matters. We can get into all the B.S. hyperbole I was just dealing with Antonio and you guys have your own to take on tonight, but first, the kids. What did you see on the inside?
SCHULTZ: Well, you know, a week ago, Senator Bill Nelson and I were denied access to the Homestead facility which has 1,300 kids, 70 of whom were separated from their families and it took me a week to be able to get into the facility with the younger children which I was able to get access to today.
You know, what was -- what I was struck by the most, and there were 22 kids there right now who are separated from their family. I'm talking 4, 5, 6-year-olds, pre-school age kids, you know? And it looks like a day care center. This is a permanent facility, not the temporary shelter like what we saw in Homestead on Saturday, and -- and it looks like a day care center.
But what I was struck by, Chris, was that, you know, unlike when I dropped my kids off at day care and picked them up at the end of the day and have them running to my arms, these kids don't see their parents. They're not picked up at the end of the day. They -- two of them very haven't even been able to locate the parents.
These are children who are being cared for by strangers. There are teen moms in this facility. I met one of them who just came in last night. She looked scared and alone, and this is all the result of the president real having an abhorrent evil policy of separating children from their parents which is completely unnecessary.
CUOMO: Now, one --
SCHULTZ: And unacceptable.
CUOMO: One quick practicality here --
CUOMO: -- and then we'll get into the politics of it.
CUOMO: The staff there, do they feel they can handle the extra capacity over time, and what is their understanding about the time line of when the kids in their custody will be reunited?
SCHULTZ: So they don't have really any idea when they are going to be able to get these kids reunited. They are working to reunite them, but the problem that we discovered at Homestead and here is that HHS, you know, the health and human services agency, only -- they can only work to reunite children and look for parents and go through the whole process Monday through Friday because DHS, Homeland Security, doesn't have staff working on the weekends to make sure that the process can be completed.
They have reunited some children at this facility I was at today, but they have 22 there right now. The facility in Homestead, you know, has 70 children, and they weren't able to really tell me if any of them have been reunited with their parents, and that's just absolutely unacceptable. This is a creation of President Trump --
SCHULTZ: -- and completely abhorrent and unnecessary.
CUOMO: Well, look, we know how we got here. The question is how do we get out of it, and that's why lawmakers like yourself, we have to hold accountable, not that you started it, but you've got to the help put out the fire and got to see how this system works over time because every day for a kid at that tender age as we're calling it now, every day is one day too many.
SCHULTZ: I can tell you how we can get out.
CUOMO: Now the politics of this and where it's leading us. You saw the interview with Antonio Sabato Jr.
SCHULTZ: I did.
CUOMO: He's talking out of a playbook that works well for that side, anything I ask makes me an enemy to the cause and to my own country, and maybe offensive to god as well, which is a nice new flourish.
And it's now being echoed on the left. I'm not doing a blame game. I'm just seeing what is in front of us, observational. What Maxine Waters said, do you believe that that kind of rhetoric and calls for shame campaigns are the answer for your party?
SCHULTZ: Well, I think we can have civil discourse and civil disobedience. What I do know is that, you know, you've got Sarah Huckabee Sanders who was asked to leave a restaurant and children tonight all across this country who have been torn from their parents and are being cared for by strangers, some of whom are in detention facilities and can't even be cared for or picked up by the people who are working at the facilities.
SCHULTZ: Those are quite different situations.
CUOMO: By orders of magnitude, but they do fall in categories, it's interesting to have you group them like that because it is in the two wrongs make a right category, does it not?
SCHULTZ: No, they aren't remotely comparable wrongs. You've got a situation --
CUOMO: A hundred percent. There are orders of magnitude different. But I'm saying the tactic is the same. We don't like what you're doing so we're going to do something bad to you. That's what Trump did with those kids --
SCHULTZ: No, no, like I said --
CUOMO: -- and that's what Waters is calling for with people that she doesn't like from the organization. Go shame them.
SCHULTZ: Chris, you can't compare someone who is calling for civil disobedience --
CUOMO: Of course not, but I'm saying as a tactic, how does it help?
SCHULTZ: -- with a policy that has torn children from their families.
CUOMO: Of course not, but I'm saying, as a tactic, how does it help?
SCHULTZ: I'll tell you. Spare me, I certainly won't be lectured by President Trump or any of his allies over civil discourse and what the definition of civility is.
CUOMO: Fair point.
SCHULTZ: These are people that have coarsened our discourse beyond almost repair. And, I mean, the first thing out of the gate that Anthony Sabato Jr. said to you was that, you know, Maxine Waters should be arrested.
SCHULTZ: You know, but at the same time saying that, you know, we have to put the flag and the constitution first.
SCHULTZ: Last time I checked, there's something called the First Amendment in the Constitution, yet he wants to put it first, but imprisoned.
CUOMO: But what is the solution to flame throwing? And obviously --
SCHULTZ: The solution is --
CUOMO: -- you stay away from gasoline in that formula, right? You stay away from gasoline --
CUOMO: -- when you're trying to put out a fire. That's what I'm saying.
SCHULTZ: The solution is that we need to sit down together in a bipartisan way, which we have been completely unable to do --
SCHULTZ: -- because they are doing a Republican only process right now in Congress and we need to work through the issues and pass comprehensive immigration reform. This is a crisis that President Trump has created himself, Chris.
CUOMO: No question.
SCHULTZ: We have the lowest rates, listen, we got the lowest rate of undocumented immigration in modern times right now. We have ramped up border security funding. I'm on the appropriations committee.
SCHULTZ: We've ramped up significantly border security funding. We've got the safest border that we've had in decades if not longer and what the president is doing is terminating programs like the community care program.
CUOMO: Right, which would have gotten up the rate of people who showed up for their hearings.
SCHULTZ: Yes, and cost $36 a day.
CUOMO: You've got 51 percent of the people in favor of a wall. That's politics of perception about what the American people want. My concern is this, it's an acute one. It is frightening to me that you guys, men and women of goodwill down there, of left and right persuasion, couldn't come together to find an immediate fix to the family separation issue because it had to be part of the bigger immigration matrix.
I just don't know how we get a solution.
SCHULTZ: No, the Republicans -- the Republicans refuse to do that.
CUOMO: Well, look, they are in control. I get.
SCHULTZ: We can put a bill on the floor tomorrow that deals with family --
CUOMO: But I think you should, if those are your intentions, I think you should do it just so that the people in this country know that's where your head and your heart is.
SCHULTZ: Absolutely. And there's legislation filed. They could solve this problem tomorrow.
Put -- Speaker Ryan could put a bill on the floor that would end the ability for the president to separate children and parents and prevent these children that I saw today who, you know, were really alone and, you know, weren't able to be comforted by their mom or their dad.
CUOMO: Yes. SCHULTZ: And many of whom have no idea where they are, are only allowed to talk to them for twice a week for 10 minutes at a time. I mean, I can talk to my kids every day, any time I want to.
And these children have been forcibly ripped from their parents. And we could end that practice tomorrow, and it is completely within Republican control to be able to do it, but they won't.
CUOMO: And the question is, is that the kind of hill to die on? Let's see what's done on both sides and then the people will weigh you and measure.
SCHULTZ: Protecting children and keeping them with their parents is definitely a hill to die on.
CUOMO: Debbie Wasserman Schultz, thank you for coming on the show to make the case.
SCHULTZ: Thank you.
CUOMO: Appreciate it. Keep us in the loop for what's happening with the kids.
SCHULTZ: For sure. Thank you so much.
CUOMO: All right. So, President Trump loves what Maxine Waters said about him. He's now lecturing her on civility. He went to a rally in South Carolina that may still be going on for all I know where he was saying, "I'm the victim," attacking Maxine Waters for being low IQ and rallying up his crowd.
The question is, where does this start to get better? That is a great topic for the great debate, ahead.
CUOMO: All right. Back now to the culture of incivility in America, certainly on both sides of the political aisle. The president lashing out at Maxine Waters for trying to gin up confrontation against his aides and also attacking the restaurant that wouldn't serve his spokeswoman.
All right. Where does it get us? What happens next?
A great debate indeed, but with decency, as always on this show -- Jennifer Granholm and Rick Santorum.
We didn't plan the segment this way but I want to start with what Maxine Waters said as kind of like the late salvo in this battle that we are fighting. So, if we have it ready, let's play it. Can we?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MAXINE WATERS (D), CALIFORNIA: And if you see anybody from that cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd and you push back on them and you tell them they're not welcome anymore anywhere.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CUOMO: Jennifer Granholm, fighting fire with fire. You're with that?
JENNIFER GRANHOLM, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: You know, I totally get the frustration that you can hear in her voice and she by the way did a follow-up segment to that to camera today. That was yesterday's rally.
CUOMO: We asked her on tonight.
GRANHOLM: She said she's not calling for violence.
But let me just say this. I completely understand the frustration that many feel at what is going on at border and feeling like we don't have the controls in any place, shape or form, but put me in camp civility. I think that we can do this in a way that gets the message across that doesn't help Donald Trump.
And right now, he is egg -- he is loving this because he ends up trolling her. He is insulting her personally and he's hoping, just hoping, that more Democrats follow his cabinet around with iPhones and chase them out of restaurants so that he can be the victim. He loves being the victim. He only wants to be the victim, and I don't want to give him that gift.
CUOMO: So, Rick Santorum, do you agree in as much as Jennifer is saying the president loves this? He exaggerated it, right, Maxine Waters wants them to hurt you. She better watch out.
That's his playing field, right? Anger is his reach emotion when it comes to emotion at the rally in South Carolina. He wants people to be angry about what he believes they should reject and this kind of helps him, does it not?
RICK SANTORUM, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, certainly, Maxine Waters' comments helps him, but I don't think it certainly helps any -- helps the public discourse, and, you know, the idea that Maxine Waters, you know, is alone in her feeling this way, I mean, I think you're seeing, you know, evidence that there are a lot of folks out there on of the left who for a lot of reasons, not just because of immigration.
I mean, Sarah Huckabee Sanders was not lead of to Red Hen restaurant because of immigration. She was asked to leave with policies having to do with gays and lesbians. So, let's just -- let's just get this right, that, you know, there's a lot of reasons people on the left are acting frankly as badly as the president acts sometimes and worse I would argue.
GRANHOLM: No, no, no.
You cannot say -- Rick, I mean, with respect, you can't say that people who are not in positions of huge power, the most powerful person on the earth is equal to everyday people who are frustrated by that person's power and the policies that are emanating from him.
He has caused America to be in the cellar of international esteem. It's an embarrassment and we are all out here going, we are exhausted by the daily outrage because every single day, there is another thing that is happening where we feel like he has taken our country from us. So, yes, you better believe that people are frustrated. But no one --
GRANHOLM: -- sets the tone more than the guy at the top.
SANTORUM: I would say in response to your no, no, no, I would say yes, yes, yes. I'm not going to tell my children that they have a lower standard because they're not the president of the United States. I'm going to tell my children, I'm going to tell everybody that I interact with that they have a standard because they are, you know, they're -- whether they are a Christian or whether they are a Muslim or whether they're just, you know, an American, you have a standard of behavior and because someone else doesn't doesn't give you an excuse me --
CUOMO: Not someone else.
GRANHOLM: No, I'm not saying that.
CUOMO: Hold on.
SANTORUM: We start acting and even if it's the president, it doesn't allow you the excuse to use the bully tactics yourself.
CUOMO: But here's the problem with your argument. Here's the problem with your argument.
GRANHOLM: I'm not saying that. I'm not saying that.
CUOMO: Jennifer, give me a second her, because this is important.
CUOMO: We get stuck here a lot in this conversation. You don't do what having a standard requires, Rick, which is to call out when it is not adhered to. You'll say you do it. You'll say you have and then you cause someone like me to do a lot of homework.
And I got to tell you something, I got a lot of full-throated conversations with you. I cannot find a single transcript where you've ever said Donald Trump, Mr. President, stop it, stop making people angry for no reason, stop gratuitously abusing the truth like you did in South Carolina tonight, just to get people angry. I don't want my kids to hear that. I tell my kids not to be that way. You have to be better. You're the leader of this country.
Never, not once.
SANTORUM: You need to look at your transcripts.
CUOMO: Oh, I have.
SANTORUM: I criticized the president --
CUOMO: Nah, you do it in qualified way.
SANTORUM: I just criticized him tonight.
CUOMO: And that encourages him. It does, Rick, and I don't understand why if it matters to you.
SANTORUM: Well, I don't --
CUOMO: Why won't you call it out --
SANTORUM: I don't think I qualified it at all. You know, I've said the president has used a lot of -- a lot of terms that are bullying, that are unfair, that are not necessarily true. I've been very tough on this president when he -- when he speaks in a way that I think is out of line with want the president -- how the president is supposed to act.
But I -- but I don't say that that's an excuse for other people to act that way.
The reality is that what Maxine Waters and what Donald Trump are doing are reflection, unfortunately, of a broader culture that is becoming coarser and it's becoming, you know, less civil and --
CUOMO: And do you think that the president has a responsibility in that dynamic?
SANTORUM: I think -- I think everybody does.
CUOMO: No, but do you think he has a larger responsibility?-
SANTORUM: But don't blame it just on the president.
CUOMO: As the most powerful man in the world?
SANTORUM: Reality TV was here before Donald Trump.
CUOMO: Right. But he is using it to play an advantage and you're making him just a symptom of the situation. Do you think he shares more responsibility than the person who owns the Red Hen restaurant or whatever it's called?
SANTORUM: I think they both have responsibility.
CUOMO: Equal responsibility?
GRANHOLM: Come on, Rick. Come on.
SANTORUM: She's the proprietor of that restaurant and she has an obligation to be able to treat customers. If that was someone -- if that was a conservative throwing a liberal out or someone who happened to be gay.
CUOMO: You mean like the baker? You mean like the baker that you guys all got up and celebrated and said religion at its best?
SANTORUM: That's a fundamental difference, Chris. That's a fundamental difference. I said very pointedly, and maybe even on your show, but I said it repeatedly, a baker -- when someone walks in and wants to buy a donut from a baker, they can't say I don't like your kind and throw them how. But that's different than saying, I want for you prepare something using your artistry to support my -- something that is against your conscience.
CUOMO: Come on, Rick. That's exactly the same thing.
SANTORUM: No, it is not the same thing and you are being dishonest intellectually, Chris, if you're saying that. And we need to have a discussion on this because that's absolutely intellectually dishonest, Chris.
CUOMO: You're saying when someone bakes a cake, it is an artistic expression and it's like forcing Picasso to make a painting that he fundamentally disagrees with as a matter of faith. But if they just come in and say --
SANTORUM: If someone --
CUOMO: -- give me a doughnut and you say, I don't want to sell you a doughnut because you're gay and I'm afraid of you people or I hate you, which is the same thing, then that's it's not OK. That's what you're saying?
SANTORUM: That's absolutely right. If you're saying to someone, you have to use your artistic talent to make a cake specifically for this occasion, which you in conscience disagree with, you are cooperating in that event, as opposed to if someone walked in and say, you know what, I like this cake, you've already made, and you want to make it, they should sell it.
CUOMO: It's an argument that worked with the Supreme Court, so I'll give you that. It worked with the Supreme Court.
But I want to remind you of something that you're not --
SANTORUM: Because it's true.
CUOMO: Well, it worked for the Supreme Court. I wish you felt every Supreme Court decision is true. We know that's not true.
So, let me just remind you of what President Trump has said and I've never seen you be the way you're being right now about the baker and the cake with any of this stuff. Play it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Get them out. Try not to hurt him. If you do, I'll defend you in court. Don't worry about it.
You see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato. Knock the crab out of him, would you, seriously.
I like to punch him in the face, I'll tell you.
I don't know if I would have done well, but I would have been out there fighting, folks. I don't know if I would have done well but I would have been boom, boom, boom, beat the --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CUOMO: Yes, where is your high dodging now, my brother? What would you do if your son said something like that?
SANTORUM: I don't like any that have. I don't like any of any of that. And I've repeatedly said I don't like the way the president acts on occasion.
CUOMO: But the way you say it, you're not has hot as are you with the baker, right? You're not as hot about that, are you?
SANTORUM: We were engaged in a discussion.
CUOMO: You're not as hot.
SANTORUM: Look, I think all of -- all of it is wrong, but the reality is that, you know, Donald Trump is crude and Donald Trump can be a bully, and I don't like any of that. I wish he didn't do it, and I've said it 100 times on this show and every other show that he would be a much more effective president if he would tone down that rhetoric and focus on the wonderful accomplishments that his administration is doing.
CUOMO: So, Jennifer, here's the flip challenge for you. I don't know how matching tactics for somebody who has had enough of Trump, right, that's the supposition of the Democrats and the resistance movement as they are calling it, we've had enough. If you've had enough of frump, don't you have to be careful about not giving another dose of Trump- like tactics?
GRANHOLM: Absolutely, especially if it's the gift of making Trump or Sarah Huckabee Sanders or anybody else look sympathetic. That's a gift.
Here is what the strategy should be. The strategy should be people -- there is a primary tomorrow. People should be getting people to the polls. If you want to really oppose Donald Trump, if you feel super passionate, then register people to vote, support organizations that are registering people to vote. Protest in the streets. That's totally great -- peacefully, but individually attacking people I think gives him the -- what exactly he craves. Get people elected. That's the message that he needs to hear.
SANTORUM: How about saying -- Jennifer, how about saying it's wrong? How about -- is it instead of saying it's a political winner for him --
GRANHOLM: No, it's wrong for him.
SANTORUM: How about saying it's wrong and we shouldn't be doing this.
GRANHOLM: I'm saying -- Rick, did you not hear me say I'm in camp civility. Don't give him what he wants. I think we should have civil discourse.
I think the president should start at the top, but I also think that everybody else should be doing that as well. I don't want this -- this strategy or this tactic to end up backfiring, but I also don't want it to send a message to any of our children that that's how we should be behaving.
That's not how we behave in this country and, unfortunately, the president has coarse ended the discourse so much that it has become who TDN (ph), it's become daily fodder that people are insulting one another.
CUOMO: You know. Anger is exhausting, and there is --
GRANHOLM: It is. I'm tired of it.
CUOMO: No, Jennifer, I still need you in a couple more minutes.
GRANHOLM: I am sick and tired of being sick and tired (INAUDIBLE)
CUOMO: That's right. On the right and the left -- on the right and the left, there is a space for a different message. I mean, America has always been motivated at her best by sweet strength, not harshness. We've seen this iteration again and again. It's worked for the left and the right.
We may arguably have never had a better purveyor of this than Ronald Reagan. I mean, you know, he came at America with an optimism and we're good people. We do good things. That is very missing right now, Rick Santorum, in our politics. That
is not what Donald Trump says except about himself.
SANTORUM: You know what. Chris, you need to go to the Reagan library, and one of the things in the Reagan library is there's a -- some sort of presentation about the media and Ronald Reagan because the media now seems to love Ronald Reagan. But I can tell you, they hated Ronald Reagan and they vilified Ronald Reagan and they called him every name in the book.
And now, to his credit he never let them get to it and he remained that optimism and he remained that kind of leader that saw through it, but, you know, what Donald Trump is doing is reacting to what happens to every conservative who gets into the office, which they get vilified by the media.
CUOMO: You're calling Donald Trump a conservative? You think Donald Trump is a conservative, do you really?
SANTORUM: Donald Trump --
SANTORUM: If you can let me finish --
CUOMO: Yes, you better, you need to add on to that. Go ahead.
SANTORUM: Donald Trump's administration has the vast majority of issues, follows through with the conservative playbook. There are a couple of exceptions to that, one being obviously tariffs, but by and large if you look at everything else this administration has done on the economy, on national security, on even to some degree --
GRANHOLM: What about exploding the deficit?
CUOMO: Not on immigration.
SANTORUM: I say it even --
CUOMO: Reagan was like Gandhi when it comes to immigration.
SANTORUM: Well, you know, Reagan said '86 was a mistake, so I disagree. No.
CUOMO: That's fine. You can think that now, but if we're going to look back and forth, back then he was loving it, Reagan was, and so was your --
SANTORUM: There are differences, I agree.
CUOMO: So was your party.
And I'll tell you this --
SANTORUM: Trump has been a pretty strong conservative. CUOMO: -- you can respect somebody's approach and their tone and
their tactics, but not their policies and their fact situations. The journey for the journalist is two paths there. You can respect how somebody, is but you can also test on the outcomes of their persuasion. And I think that's what happened then and it's certainly going to happen right now.
Rick Santorum, thank you very much. Jennifer Granholm, I appreciate you muscling through.
CUOMO: Thank you very much.
All right. Take a look at this guy. We have a special treat for you on a Monday. You know who this is? Draymond Green, one of the world champion Golden State Warriors. Nobody's afraid or unafraid the way this man is on the court or off. I don't even like the way he's walking at me right now.
We're going to talk about the championship, going to the White House, not going to the White House and the state of affairs in the country with the Golden State Warrior champ here next.
Good to see you, sir.
DRAYMOND GREEN, NBA PLAYER: Good to see you as well.
CUOMO: All right. My next guest has been very busy helping his team win three NBA championships in the past four years.
Golden State Warrior Draymond Green is a tough guy on the court, and he's tough off the court as well.
It's good you have to, sir.
DRAYMOND GREEN, GOLDEN STATE WARRIOR: Thanks for having me.
CUOMO: Champ, as it were, three for you, good for you.
We were talking a little bit before we started. You win the first one, you're a superstar. The next one you better win it or you're a chump. Different pressure for you.
How has that changed your mindset about what you bring to your craft?
GREEN: Well, it changed the way you prepare. You know, you prepare to win a championship -- the first one you're preparing to attack everyone, and so you're always in attack mode. There's always something driving you or pushing you.
The second one, you're preparing to defend yourself against everyone and trying to keep that mentality of attacking is the challenge. That's how you defend it. That's how you stay on top, but that's the toughest part of it all.
CUOMO: It sounds exactly like our political culture. It's actually not even a segue. It's a direct parallel.
When you look at what's happening right now and the latest round is Maxine Waters, you know, who she is, congresswoman from congresswoman says I've had enough and I want you guys to go after -- we've been playing this sound but just in case you haven't been watching the show. This is what is Maxine Waters said that has really defined the state of play of where we are right now.
Here it is for a refresher.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MAXINE WATERS (D), CALIFORNIA: And if you say anybody from that cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, and a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd, and you push back on them and you tell them they are not welcome anymore anywhere.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CUOMO: Right message?
GREEN: Well, what I would say is, you know, especially, you know, you used to say as an African-American you understand. I think now as an American, you understand the frustration.
But I just want to make sure that we're all careful of doing things the right way, continuing to go where our country was headed and not where it's been headed over the last year, year and a half.
We have to stay mindful that if we want things to change, make sure we're going about it the right way to effect that change and not what our mind may tell us initially.
CUOMO: All right. That is very unsatisfying what you just said. If somebody is angry and I don't like what this person is doing, I don't like what they are saying, I've had it. It's time to fight back.
You're telling me to take it -- and there are people on the left and part of this movement that they are calling the resistance movement which I think, by the way, includes your coach -- that they don't want to take it anymore. They want to fight back.
So, how do you sell that as not being soft?
GREEN: Well, I think you fight back strategically. You know, most of the time, you meet force with force which you have to.
CUOMO: By the way, what you're known for.
GREEN: It can go either way.
CUOMO: On the court, by the way.
CUOMO: I was going to say, you know, you're no negotiator on the court. Your elbows do your negotiating.
GREEN: Absolutely, but you have to be strategic with it. If you meet someone with words and strategy, you're going to beat them every time as opposed to just meeting with force, because their force may have not strategy. And so, I think it's, you know, important that we stay strategic and, of course, be forceful, stand up for what you believe in as we all have done, as we all continue to do, but at the same time, make sure you're coming with the right strategy and you use that force and it will work.
CUOMO: If you won again -- now, again, you know, you said something interesting that we shouldn't ignore. And we don't do that on the show, being African-American matters, gives you a specific set of sensitivities that not every American shares and, yes, maybe we are starting to see there's some common themes, but there's still some unique ones, and that loomed large for your team in terms of whether you'd go to the White House.
If you had to do that again, would you make the same move and say I don't want to go, we're not going?
GREEN: I think -- well, I know we would make the same decision and not go. You know, it's not about not seeing Donald Trump or, you know, anything else that goes with it. But more so about what we stand for, and -- and in order to effect change, you have to stand for something.
And if you go about it the same way you do the same things you do if everything was normal, then you won't effect change. Our goal is to affect some change, we'll use our platform to do that and that's why we opted not to go to the White House because it's -- you know, it would just be status quo if we did and then how do you -- how does your voice even matter?
CUOMO: Ho he says to deal with the NFL, to make it a little bit better because he used that as -- he weaponized the National Anthem situation to make people feel certain things about what it is to be American, and then he says, hey, look, you guys, the African-Americans are so upset, give me some people and I'll pardon them.
Was that a good suggestion?
GREEN: It could possibly been just like one of those things that you do to make someone be quiet. And I think -- you know, when I look at that -- I mean, maybe it helps -- maybe it helps a certain individual or certain few individuals but doesn't help the overall problem.
I'm not sure if it does affect the overall problem. The NFL, it's kind of -- you know, with Donald Trump and everything -- it's gone a different way.
I know with us in the NBA, like I said before, we just try to stand for what we believe in. And I think, you know, with us, we have to give our commissioner, Adam Silver, a lot of credit. He -- when there's a problem coming, he acknowledges it right away.
GREEN: And it helps us and they power us as players. And they stand with us as players, and they allow us to have a voice. They want us to have a voice. So, you know, I like where we are as a league.
You know, I think it's going really well with the climate of our country and I'm pleased with where we are as a lead for sure.
CUOMO: Well, we're still in that tension state, right, where there really is no accommodation being made, it's about -- it's about being upset on both sides -- right, wrong, whatever.
I've heard from numerous guys in the league say to me, you have to understand, as a black guy, Trump doesn't look at me the way he looks at you. I say, do you really believe that? Yes, I really believe it.
You don't think it's politics, you know, that he's saying those guys shouldn't be in the country? He's just talking about people -- do you really think it means black? And they say, yes.
Do you agree with that?
GREEN: I mean -- well, you never really know someone's true motive. You know, I can make my mouth say whatever I want it to say, it's up to you whether you believe it or not. You know, I don't really get off into, you know, whether -- how he feels about me as a black man, because at the end of the day, it's subjective and it really doesn't matter.
CUOMO: What matters to you is what you do with your time and your platform. What is your big move right now that you believe shows Draymond Green, yes, he's a star athlete but he's using his power to make a positive difference and that's why I'm doing X? What is X?
GREEN: Well, for me, I'm the board of RISE, and, you know, with Commissioner Silver and all the commissioners of the league, and David Levy (ph), and everyone of the TV stations and TV networks and trying to effect change. RISE does such a great job in the inner city and -- I mean, quite frankly, all over the country.
You know, I think Steve Ross's first thought was -- I mean, we're talking to him about it when he first decided to do it, are you born racist or are you taught racism? And trying to figure that out, answer that question, then taking the steps that we need to make, to make our country as good as we can possibly make it.
So, I spend a lot of my time with Ross, doing different things with Ross and trying to effective change that way.
CUOMO: Draymond, congratulations. Thank you for being apart of the dialogue. When things come up that matter to you, that affect you, we want you as part of the conversation on this show.
GREEN: Thanks a lot. Thank you for having me. CUOMO: Appreciate it.
All right. Don Lemon standing by with a preview of "CNN TONIGHT" just minutes away.
What do you think about me with Draymond Green? I make him look a little small, no?
DON LEMON, CNN HOST, "CNN TONIGHT": He's impressive. He's an impressive man doing great things. And the question he asked about, are you taught that or are born with it, I thought that was a very good question. And we're going to talk about that in a sense, considering all this incivility that's going on, people getting kicked out of the restaurant from the Trump administration, on and on, the guy being yelled at, right, in California, being called a rapist because he's Mexican or he is of Mexican decent, he's actually an American.
Where are we going with civility? Dan Rather is going to be here. He's seen a lot.
And also, that gentleman who was yelled at by the woman will be here as well. And he's going to explain his side of the story. We're going to talk about all of it in just a few minutes. Chris, we'll see you then.
CUOMO: Strong show, thank you, Don.
All right. We got a few thoughts of what's going on, what it means and whether there really is a cure -- next.
CUOMO: Closing argument.
Our body politic is sick. Both sides agree, we're sick. The problem is, both think the other side's choice of medicine is actually poison.
But we are sick and we just suffered a grave injury. Separating families was a gut shot. It made people so angry because it's a rejection of America as an ideal.
President Trump stepped back, but whether it was that fugazi executive order that the president said one second stopped separations, and the next that it didn't, denying access to the kids, to us as your eyes and ears, whatever you're look at he's not about curing the crisis that has thousands of people's babies in limbo or worse tonight. And that is on Trump.
So, for those who oppose his efforts, what is the remedy to this sickness? White House officials and other Trump friendlies in power getting shamed? Kicked out of places by people who have had enough of Trump?
Think about the last phrase, who have had enough of Trump. If you have had enough of President Trump as the answer to borrow his tactics. Did Maxine Waters' words hurt Trump?
Now, let's be clear. I get the anger. I'm a fighter. I test powers, I get it. But it's about whether or not what you do help the situation if that is your goal.
Remember what America is -- at her most vital, she exerts sweet strength. She is numerous by diversity and empowerment for all. You need your antibodies and the media to promote the exercise of civil discourse, be it sweaty resistance to different agendas, or the endurance training of compromise.
I get that there can be something like a sugar high from binging on anger. But those are the emptiest of calories and I don't see how any of that is going to be a cure for fever that is getting hotter by the day.
That is all for us tonight. Thank you for watching.
"CNN TONIGHT" with Don Lemon, the man, starts right now.