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Interview with Donald Trump; Donald Trump's Presidential Candidacy Analyzed; State of Emergency Declared in Ferguson, Missouri; Arrests & Violence During Ferguson Protests; Colorado Governor Declares State of Emergency. Aired 8-8:30a ET
Aired August 11, 2015 - 08:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[08:00:00] DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I must be doing something right. I don't know.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: It is inarguable, inarguable that you have tapped into something that matters with members of the GOP and maybe beyond. But that puts an onus on you, Mr. Trump, to deliver.
TRUMP: Well, I think what is arguable, frankly, and I think the thing that I have tapped into is that people are finding our leadership is incompetent, and they know that I am far from that. They know I get things done. They know that I'm a smart guy who gets things done. And I want things done properly. And I don't want them done for myself. I made a lot of money. I don't want money. I don't want people giving me money. I want to do something great. And great is to make our country great again.
There can be no greater service that I do, and that's what I want to do. I want to make our country great. Our infrastructure is falling apart. We need military. We have to take care of our vets. Our vets are -- it's never been, you know, two weeks ago on Wednesday they had the longest wait in the history of the Veteran's Administration waiting for a doctor.
CUOMO: How do you fix it?
TRUMP: They're waiting four or five days to see a doctor, and at the end of the sixth day the doctor comes out and says, I'm sorry, I can't see you, I'm going on vacation.
CUOMO: The problems are open and notorious. The fix has been elusive. Do you have one?
TRUMP: I will fix it, believe me. That's what I do in life. I fix it. I'm not a politician. Politicians are all talk and no action, Chris. And I'm the opposite.
CUOMO: Mr. Trump, thank you for coming back on NEW DAY. As the campaign continues we invite you back to discuss the issues and your solution to them.
TRUMP: Thank you very much, Chris.
CUOMO: Have a good day, sir. TRUMP: So long.
CUOMO: Ladies and gentlemen, Donald Trump. We just spoke with the GOP frontrunner. We're going to take a break or we're going to talk about it now? Oh, we'll keep going. We'll bring in senior political reporter Nia-Malika Henderson and CNN chief national correspondent and host of "INSIDE POLITICS" John King. I thought maybe we'd have to take a commercial there. But the CNN way is we keep going, brother and sister, when we have something to talk about.
So what do you think? I'm trying to get answers out of him. His main take is this, John. I know you want a plan. I have to be flexible. I'll give you the plan when I'm in there. Good enough?
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's working at the moment, so he thinks it's good enough. And that's what's so unorthodox in the Trump phenomenon in this summer of Trump is can he sustain this.
You asked him a question about his own words about women and he was asked about the debate, then he goes to Jeb Bush and then he wanders on and somehow gets to the Iran deal. You ask him, what do you mean, give me the specifics of your plan to simplify the tax code. And he says I'll give them to you down the road. I'm not going to give them to you now.
You asked him, Chris, you got to do more nuance and more policy than I think anybody has over the course of this campaign. You say, do you defund Planned Parenthood, and he said I'll look at it, probably parts of it, but some of what they do is important. He called it an abortion factory but said he would look at some of it. We don't get a lot of nuance out of Donald Trump, but there was some important nuance there.
But can you imagine, he says you need to be flexible. Can you imagine if Mitt Romney had said four years ago when he was being asked about the Massachusetts health care plan or being asked about his views on tax policy if he said you have to be flexible? In most campaigns, especially in a Republican Party that is lost and looking for a leader, they demand those specifics. But Mr. Trump is on to something. He just says leadership. He just says leadership, leadership, I will tell them what to do. And it's working right now. Can it work in the long-term? We'll see. But right now it's working and it's very clear he's not going to change.
MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: And I want to stick with that, and Nia- Malika Henderson joining us as well. I found it so interesting that to every question, whether it was Iran, whether it was the tax code, he said I'll fix it, believe me. Believe me, is that good enough for voters?
NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: You know, so far so good, right? I think in that question he was talking about negotiating with Iran and negotiating with other countries, and he said of those other countries that they would do what he told them to do. And that is what he is running as the alpha male. He is running as the sort of biggest man on the stage who can sort of craft the world in the way that he wants because he was able to build the Trump Tower, right? And so that is his argument. His wealth is his argument. His personality is his argument as well. And in some ways, this has shades of Obama in some ways, right? Obama's argument was in some ways that because of his personality that he could change the ways of Washington.
CUOMO: Nia-Malika Henderson says Donald Trump is like President Barack Obama.
PEREIRA: I think that would make Donald Trump lose his mind, wouldn't it.
CUOMO: Trump's going to call back.
HENDERSON: I thought it was a great interview, Chris, very nuanced. And I think if you're a Trump supporter, you're going to like Trump more after this interview. And if you're one of those people that is essentially playing and hoping that Trump is going to flame out and maybe that the bad old Trump will show up again at this next debate or over these next couple of days, this was a different Trump. It was a subtle Trump that I thought he was able to shift to politics in a way, talking about Jeb Bush. I thought it was a smarter and a somewhat smarter more nimble Trump that showed up.
ANA CABRERA, CNN ANCHOR: What is consistent about Trump is he issues no apologies. When Chris asked him about his comments about women and whether he could offer assurances to women that that kind of rhetoric would not be part of the White House should he be there, he didn't answer the question, John. He deflected it talking about Jeb Bush. Do you think that today's comments made any inroads with women?
[08:05:15] KING: We'll look at the polling data as it goes forward. If you look at our current polls right now, Donald Trump -- if you put Hillary Clinton versus the four or five leading Republican candidates, including Mr. Trump, he loses by the most in a general election matchup today. He says he would be Hillary Clinton's worst nightmare. At the moment in polling he's her greatest dream in the sense that there's a 28 point gender gap when Hillary Clinton runs against Donald Trump, and there's no way any candidate can when the presidency with a 28 point gender gap.
But we're having this conversation in the middle of August. That election is next November. Donald Trump has to win the Republican nomination first. But again, Ana, you make a key point. He was asked about his own words. Look, he didn't like the question, he didn't like the tone of the question from Megyn Kelly. He's running for president of the United States. Anything is a fair question when you're running for president, but especially your own words. That is his Twitter feed she was asking him about.
And he doesn't want to apologize. He has said I was an entertainer. He could say "I was an entertainer then, I was looking for rates. Now I'm running for president. I realize my tone has to be different." But he wouldn't say that. He just pivots every time and he turns the attention to somebody else. But again, in that interview, this is the man running for the Republican nomination to lead the conservative party here in the United States. He says he might give Planned Parenthood some money. You got him to lay out his position on abortion with the rape, incest, and life of the mother exceptions, which is he talked policy there, which he often doesn't do. And he gave Marco Rubio credit. He didn't criticize Marco Rubio --
CUOMO: He said women should get equal pay for equal work.
KING: That's the point I was trying to get to. He says he will look at equal pay as well.
CUOMO: He said he put out the proof of that as well.
KING: But the government --
CABRERA: That was a complicated issue, while taking on ISIS or going at Iran or negotiations with Russia would be simple.
KING: But a conservative candidate that would give Planned Parenthood some money and will look at a federal role in equal pay is going to raise eyebrows you would think among the conservative base and the conservative organization to say those are marketplaces, or they're economic issue, those are market positions.
But Mr. Trump has on a number of occasions back when he was thinking about running for the Reform Party nomination 15 years ago he spoke favorably about single payer health insurance. So he has taken a number of positions that would think would be anathema to the conservative base, but because of the power of personality and his position saying we need leaders, and look at the buttons he touched in that interview. There's no respect for our president. That plays well with the conservative base. We can't play the world's policemen, yet he would go after ISIS. You need the Europeans to step up, others to step up.
He is a very smart person. He's running a very unorthodox campaign, but he knows how to speak to the people who are with him so far. And so far he's not losing them.
CUOMO: And he definitely said something very significant about Jeb. He wants this is thing that Jeb said about women's health to be a real death blow for him. He was spinning that effectively as well. And there's no question that politics is part deflection, and this man, Mr. Trump, is very good at it. It's gotten him to where he is right now.
John King, thank you very much, Nia-Malika Henderson, as always.
Let's go over this with the former Florida Senator Mel Martinez, a former chairman of the RNC as well. Senator, always a pleasure to have you on NEW DAY. So how do you feel about Mr. Trump now? We put the questions to him about policy. His main rejoinder was I don't have to give you the specifics, I just know you can get it done. Do you think he could be your man.
MEL MARTINEZ, FORMER CHAIRMAN, REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE: First of all, let me compliment you on the interview. I thought you got a lot of answers from Mr. Trump.
CUOMO: Thank you, senator.
MARTINEZ: Not enough specifics, but you certainly got him to cover a lot of territory.
So first of all, no, I'm still sticking with Jeb, I have to tell you. I'm looking forward to his speech on foreign policy tonight where I'll think you get some more specifics and probably a little more of a presidential tone.
Chris, a couple of things I think are really interesting about the interview. Number one is that Mr. Trump doesn't give you specifics. And when he talks about dealing with foreign leaders in the very complicated world in which we live, I know that simple answers are appealing to people because the world is so darned complicated and the United States' position is so important. But what he doesn't understand is that you don't demand world leaders to respect you. You have to earn their respect.
When you're dealing with government, it's not like being the CEO of a company which you show up for work, and, you know what, if I don't like the way you're working, you're fired. If I tell you to do something and I want it done by noon and you don't get it done, I'll find somebody else to do it. Government doesn't work that way. He's got to work with a Congress. If he's going to do tax policy, I think his ideas might be great. And, frankly, I agree with a lot of that and I think they're consistent with Republican mainstream, which is simplify the tax code, lower the rates, make the IRS more productive and less cumbersome for taxpayers.
But you're not going to get a tax reform package through Congress unless you persuade other members of Congress. You've got to have a plan. You can't just go figure it out later. That's not how government works.
[08:10:01] And I have found that men and women who come from the private sector and go into government oftentimes do not understand how government works. Government needs to be more like business, but government isn't business and never will be because you have coequal branches of the government. So whether you're dealing with foreign leaders or whether you're dealing with the Congress, you have to earn your respect. You have to earn your policies to be adopted. President Obama found that out because he was a rookie at it. We're going to elect another rookie? I don't think that's a good idea.
CUOMO: The point about dealing with foreign leaders is well-taken. The part about how you work with government is debatable, because part of his appeal is that people don't like how it works down there or doesn't work and they would love a disruptive model brought in there. So they're probably different standards of evaluation. But he said something about your candidate, Jeb Bush. He thinks that
Jeb killed himself with that comment about women's health and not needing the money or not being sure that they needed the money. Yes, Jeb Bush clarified it in the way of saying he was talking about Planned Parenthood, not the issue overall. But Donald Trump says that did him in.
MARTINEZ: Well, again, I think that's Donald Trump's wish, but that's not reality. The fact is that he clarified his comment immediately. And since then he made it clear in the debate the other night when he was governor of Florida he actually defunded Planned Parenthood. Here Mr. Trump this morning said he would in fact continue to fund Planned Parenthood. That's not popular in the Republican primary electorate.
CUOMO: He said he'd look at it.
MARTINEZ: Well, I mean, yes, he'd look at it and he'd fund parts of it. I'm sorry, but, you know, Jeb Bush took action when he was governor long before the videos came out. And I thought that that was a really, really strong position for him to bring out in the debate the other night.
CUOMO: Who is on the right side of that in terms of winning the general, do you think, Mel? You've been always open-minded about this stuff regardless of your personal position on abortion. If you say, hey, I'm not going to do it. I'm taking a hard line on this. Say what you want about abortion. It's three percent of what Planned Parenthood does. But there's a huge body of service that they provide that will be at risk if you just go ahead and defund it without even investigating first. Do you think that help in the general?
MARTINEZ: I think, first of all, it's about women's health. If it's about women's health, fund women's health entities. When I worked as the mayor of Orange County, we had a lot of problems with health care. We funded local entities that go out in the community, bring people in, give them the health care they need, do breast examinations for women that weren't otherwise getting them. Those are the kinds of things you have to do, something that reaches community and reaches people.
So it can be about women's health or it can be about abortion. I think that to blend the two, it may sound smart as a way of keeping funding for Planned Parenthood, but frankly that's not reality. I think reality is with a lot of organizations that work in communities and provide health care for women, which Jeb is for. I think it's important to distinguish between abortion services paid with my tax dollars and providing health for women.
And by the way, there's a whole host of other issues that really need to be covered more thoroughly. And you did a great job of covering the waterfront with Trump. And I think that's part of what I think is so important for us in this debate. But another thing, by the way, and you ended with talking about whining. You know, it's never very attractive for a Monday morning the quarterback to be complaining about the call the ref made on Sunday. Man up, man. Quit talking about Megyn Kelly being mean to you. How are you going to handle Putin if you can't handle Megyn Kelly's tough questions? This is a tough business. Did I like Tim Russert asking me the questions he asked me in my debate when I was running for the Senate? Well, of course not. it would have been simpler not to face them. But that's part of test. That's what you've got to do. So get used to tough questions. Give your answers and move on and quit whining. That's just the way it is in politics.
CUOMO: I hear you. Tim Russert, may he rest in peace, was one of our best and it's certainly a rough game. You've got to be willing for tough questions. And he said something -- he was misspeaking, but he said, you know, I want to be treated fairly. I want it to be nice. Very different things especially in politics, as you know from a lifetime and I as well. Senator Mel Martinez, thank you very much for joining us. Appreciate your perspective on NEW DAY always. Come again.
MARTINEZ: Thanks. Good to be with you.
PEREIRA: All right, taking a look at Ferguson. The community of Ferguson no doubt hoping for a peaceful day after another night of protests descended into violence. And 23 arrests at least overnight after officials say demonstrators threw rocks and frozen water bottles at police. A state of emergency remains in effect in St. Louis Count. Ryan Young is joining us now with the very latest from Ferguson this morning. Ryan?
RYAN YOUNG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Michaela, a lot of people wondering what's next. Of course we did get those updated numbers, about 23 people being arrested. But some protesters showed up to last night's protest with frozen water bottles and started throwing them at police.
YOUNG: Overnight several arrests made as rocks and frozen water bottles were thrown at police.
[08:15:04] Protesters taking to the streets, blocking traffic.
Authorities earlier declared a state of emergency in Ferguson.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Give us some room, give us some room. Back up.
YOUNG: As protesters continue for a second night surrounding the anniversary of Michael Brown's death. Armored police vehicles on the streets, police lining up in riot gear.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People that run towards danger instead of from it.
YOUNG: Around 2:00 a.m., a puzzling scene, a small group of heavily armed men walked into a group of protesters, calling themselves the Oath Keepers.
"JOHN", OATH KEEPERS: Everybody has the right to be safe and secure in their person and things. YOUNG: The men say they're protecting rioters with Info Wars, a site
run by a conspiracy theorist. They say police are leaving them alone.
Earlier on Monday, protesters shut down an interstate in St. Louis.
WESLEY BELL, FERGUSON CITY COUNCIL MEMBER: Many of these are people who have their own agendas, who do wish to escalate violence; they mix in with a lot of the peaceful protesters. It is difficult. And particularly for law enforcement, who has no idea, oftentimes, who is who.
YOUNG: Tensions growing after a reported four shootings Sunday night. Eighteen-year-old Tyrone Harris remains in critical condition after being shot by police late Sunday.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Please get him some help!
YOUNG: And, Ana, talking about the tension that was here, when protesters decided to block the highway, we saw several drivers trying to carve through those protesters and then people kicking those cars. So, you can obviously understand, people want to make sure nothing gets anymore tense than what it has been.
ANA CABRERA, CNN ANCHOR: It could be worse, certainly. Hopefully, it is peaceful today and tonight. Thank you so much, Ryan Young, in Ferguson, Missouri.
Let's head to Colorado now, where the Governor John Hickenlooper has declared a state of emergency. And this is because of serious contamination because of a massive chemical spill into the Animas River. It turns out it's about three times worse than earlier estimates.
CNN's Dan Simon is joining us live in Durango, Colorado, southwest Colorado.
Dan, this is all the result of an accident by the Environmental Protection Agency, right?
DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, hey, Ana. Yes. As the EPA has noted themselves, they are in the business of responding to emergencies, not causing them. In this case, that this is exactly what happened.
You can see along the river bank, you see signs like these saying the river is closed.
Let me show you why that is, as we go here. You can see this orangish, yellow river. In some places, it looks OK, but that doesn't mean that the danger has passed. It just mean this is toxic stew has fallen to the bottom. I actually collected some water in this bottle. You shake it up stuff at the bottom, you shake this up and you have this ugly-looking water. And the concern is that if you have a storm, you could have this situation really repeat itself. Now, this all happened when the EPA was trying to clean up that abandoned gold mine and it completely backfired. Three million gallons of that contaminated water come into the Animas River. A really shocking situation as you can imagine. Residents and businesses are quite frustrated.
We talked to the owner of a local rafting company. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID MOLER, OWNS RAFTING COMPANY: They should have had some safeguards in place before they started poking around up there.
SIMON: How is it going to affect your bottom line?
MOLER: Drastically. I mean, it's -- this is our life. We've been a rafting company established for over 32 years, and this will negatively impact our bottom line.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SIMON: And the bottom line is this river is closed indefinitely. We should point out that at this point there's no evidence that this contamination has gotten into the drinking water supply.
Chris, we'll send it back you.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: This is one of those situations we're going to have to follow, because what's the chance that it doesn't get everywhere that's possible, you know? So, we'll stay on this story for you. Just horrible pictures.
So, in Ferguson, here's the situation, more arrests after a state of emergency is declared. We're going to speak with a state senator about what it will take for that community to calm down and heal.
[08:22:37] MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: Some two dozen arrests overnight in Ferguson, hours after a state of emergency was declared. That community is on edge, still following gunfire and protest Sunday night, disrupting what had been a peaceful day of remembering Michael Brown.
Where does the community go from here?
We want to bring in one of the leaders there, Missouri State Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal. She's been a familiar face here with us on our program.
Good to see you, Senator.
Monday night, peaceful demonstrations. We've seen also the side of police in riot gear. What are your thoughts about what you've seen transpire over the last two days of your company? MARIA CHAPPELLE-NADAL (D), MISSOURI STATE SENATE: Well, it started off very peaceful and people were very happy. There was a sense of kinship and belonging. People from throughout the country came, as well as people who had previously been on the couch decided to come out and participate in something that we felt was very positive.
Then, as the world knows, things turned on Sunday night. And yesterday our county executive issued a state of an emergency. And we didn't understand why. Of course, he is new to the job and I know that he is trying to learn his way.
But I really do think that most of the people who are here in St. Louis and the state of Missouri feel as though he went overboard yesterday.
PEREIRA: You don't agree with that declaration then? How do you think things could have been handled better?
CHAPPELLE-NADAL: Well, first of all, we know from the very early days last year, when you have this extra military force, people are intimidated by that. They feel even more threatened than they have ever before.
And so, that is really indicative that things have not changed whatsoever. That is not how you approach a group of people who have been hurt for so long, and having that extra military force only makes things worse.
And so, last night, while I know that so many people were arrested throughout the day, I'm glad that we did not have any injuries or any deaths.
PEREIRA: So, what do you suggest, Senator? The fact is it is a challenge. We know the state of Ferguson right now is tenuous, it is fragile. There's a lot of anger and frustration throughout the country, in the African-American communities.
So, how do you suggest that law enforcement handle the situation, the challenge of protecting the citizenry and the businesses of Ferguson, but then also allowing protesters to speak their piece?
[08:20:09] CHAPPELLE-NADAL: Well, here's what I have to say to both groups of people -- we all want to go home at night. We all want to tuck our children in at night. And we all want to give our spouse or our partner a hug and a kiss at night.
And so, every single person, whether they are a police officer or an activist on the street, we having to be cognizant that everyone wants to go home.
We're going to have to start building these bridges. Every single day, I'm dealing with young people who feel as though they have no hope. Yesterday, I talked to a person, Dante, who is a young person who is afraid to go home and feels as though he's about to die at the hands of a police officer. I have other people who have thought about committing suicide and are very depressed every single day. So, I just wish that the police officers and the people on the ground
who feel they are injured would come together. I mean, we realize there are bad apples on both side, in the police department, as well as on the streets, but we have to remind ourselves that we have to have a community, a state and a nation that is visually thinking about where we need to go in the future. We cannot sustain ourselves with the violence and the hatred for human life.
PEREIRA: Maria Chappelle-Nadal, I think you've been very passionate about this and I know that you'll be part of the conversations going forward. We know that the Ferguson commission is scheduled to issue its report come early September. We know the Justice Department is on the ground there and we know that you're calling for action. We want to thank you for joining us here on NEW DAY.
And we hope you'll come back and let us know of progress when it happens. And also keep officials' feet to the flames so that they will make changes there and beyond, OK?
CHAPPELLE-NADAL: Thank you so much.
PEREIRA: Good to have you with us.
CABRERA: All right. If you're just joining us, you missed a lengthy and interesting interview with Donald Trump where he talked policy. He also talked about whining and he doesn't take offense to being called a whiner. In fact, he said it would help him win. How?
Reaction to what he said on NEW DAY just moments ago.