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Fact Checking Donald Trump's Positions; Chuck Schumer Talks No Vote on Iran Nuclear Deal; Police Push Back Against Angry Ferguson Protesters; Journey for Justice March Seeks a Fair Criminal Justice System. Aired 1:30-2p ET

Aired August 11, 2015 - 13:30   ET


[13:30:00] GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: And then you've got Trump as you put it, quite rightly, punching down trying to keep time back in the pack. So there's no 11th commandment, as Ronald Reagan used to say, do not speak ill of another Republican. Everything is topsy-turvy right now.

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN ANCHOR: I want to look at what Trump said drawing his distinction on his views on abortion and another one of his rivals. Let's listen.


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR, NEW DAY; Marco Rubio, someone running against you, saying he doesn't believe in any carve-outs for rape or insist, no abortion on any level. Do you agree?

DONALD TRUMP, (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE & CEO, TRUMP ORGANIZATION (voice-over): I disagree. I am for the exceptions, you have to three exceptions. And the health of the mother and the life of the mother, I absolutely am for the exceptions and so was Ronald Reagan for the exceptions, by the way. There's nothing wrong with that, you have to do it, in my opinion. Now Marco took a very strong stand. I respect him for that. He believes that. It's just a different thing. I am for the exceptions, yes.


KEILAR: So there's this issue and then there's the issue of also defunding Planned Parenthood. He says he would partially defend Planned Parenthood and yet you have a lot of Republicans who say you can't just take away the money for women's health and separate it from abortion. They say this money is fungible so they would completely defund Planned Parenthood. How do these issues play to this Republican primary audience, Gloria?

BORGER: Well, I think what you're going to see now -- and you see it with Rand Paul -- is that you're going to see Republicans attacking Donald Trump from the right. Saying this is a conservative base in this party and they're saying when you take a look at Donald Trump and he doesn't want to defund Planned Parenthood and his position on abortion, for example, Scott Walker might say that, you have to look and understand that he's flip-flopped on all these issues, that he's not a true conservative. You like him because he's not a politician, but if you start dissecting his views, you'll discover that maybe he's more of a Democrat than you think.


KEILAR: It's a great point Gloria makes. Do you think that's what's going to happen?

DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Well, I think that is question.


KEILAR: Will it work, is the question.

CHALIAN: He was just talking about abortion and the exceptions. We should remind everyone Mitt Romney was for those exceptions. John McCain was for those exceptions. Even though the party platform is where Marco Rubio is, they have had recent nominees that don't support that. And when Dana Bash asked Donald Trump what he would do, he said he'd talk to the party to see if he could change the platform so if he gets that far we'll see if he follows through.


KEILAR: David Chalian, Gloria Borger, we'll leave it there. Hang with me, guys. There's more ahead.

What would Trump do on issues like income tax reform? ISIS? The Iran nuclear deal? We'll look at Trump's policy positions when we come back.


[13:37:13] KEILAR: Donald Trump's presidential campaign has come under fire for being long on rhetoric but short on specifics. Trump was pressed during his interview this morning on CNN's "New Day" with Chris Cuomo.

I want to bring back chief political analyst, Gloria Borger; and political director, David Chalian.

Guy, listen to what Trump said when Chris pressed him for specifics on income tax reform.


TRUMP (voice-over): From the VATs to the fair tax, to every single form of tax, our tax code is too complicated and we can simplify it so easily.


TRUMP: How? Using intelligence! By having common sense.


CUOMO: But, I mean, what do you simplify? Do you make the top rate go from 30 something to 20 something?

TRUMP: I want to put H&R block out of business. I want to put them out of business. A person with a simple tax return can't figure it out. They have to go out and pay money to these companies that do your tax return for you.


KEILAR: How does he, David, go on without putting out specifics on taxes?

CHALIAN: First and foremost because it's working for him. The entire issue was Trump doubling down on Trumpism and this way of campaigning for him where he's not polling or doing what traditional candidates do or putting out policy white papers or putting agenda on his web site. Chris was asking the right questions. Donald Trump and his campaign keep saying that will come but I don't get any indication from him today in that interview that that's coming any time soon.

KEILAR: Listen to this. This is Trump delving into foreign policy including the war against ISIS. This is his strategy.


CUOMO: Will you put troops on the ground?

TRUMP: I would go in and take the oil and put troops to protect the oil. I would go in and take the money source away and, believe me, they would start to wither and they would collapse.


KEILAR: Does that fly with voters, that simplification, Gloria?

BORGER: Well, we don't know yet, the question is whether it would fly with the generals. If you parse what he said, "I would go in and I'd take the oil." Well, how would you do that? "I'd put troops to protect the oil." So are you calling for troops on the ground? How would you do that? As David points out with all of this, sort far it's like punching Jell-O. You just don't know what the policies are.

People are getting to know Trump, there's a lot of people in the Republican base who admire him, who like him, who like his plain talk but at a certain point campaigns change and the other candidates will start to challenge him on his specifics themselves if the press cannot pin him down. I guarantee you the other candidates will continue to campaign and say this is what I would do, what would Donald Trump do? Because now they have a dog in this fight. He's taking away from their numbers and their support. So they have a great stake to pin him down as well.

[13:40:17] KEILAR: Let's listen to what Trump said about the nuclear deal with Iran. This was pretty harsh criticism.


TRUMP (voice-over): I think that may go down and may ultimately horribly go down as one of the dumbest deals in world history.

CUOMO: So what would you do?


TRUMP: What would I have done?


TRUMP: First of all, I would have doubled the sanctions. Then I would have said before we start I want our prisoners back. Then after that I would have made a good deal and there wouldn't have been 24 days --


CUOMO: Your allies aren't with you on the sanctions.

TRUMP: That's part of leadership. You have to get the allies with you.


KEILAR: So he's saying I would have gotten a better deal but is that going to convince voters? He seems to be, David, running on this idea of I'm a good negotiator but just saying victim gotten a better deal?

CHALIAN: Well, he sounds like almost every other Republican presidential candidate. This may be where simplification works. That's pure red meat for the conservative base to say it does require a stronger leader who can bring the allies to the place you need them to. That's one you have to say the proof is in the pudding when he's in the job. It's hard to make that into a policy of how we would get the allies to do that.

KEILAR: And he seems to have Americans on his side, Gloria, when you look at the polls and how people approve of this Iran deal.

BORGER: Sure. That's right. And there is no doubt that as Republicans look at the field they want somebody who's a tough negotiator because they believe that Barack Obama has not been tough enough. And that's one of the reasons they don't like this president. I think the question raised during the debate by Megyn Kelly, which was overshadowed by other things, is the question of presidential temperament. Who has the temperament to cut a deal? Will Donald Trump's temperament be effective when you're dealing with European allies or enemies?

KEILAR: Or is it more important that his temperament connects with how so voters feel?

Gloria Borger, David Chalian, thanks, guy, so much.

Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer says his decision to go against President Obama on a proposed nuclear deal with Iran was one of the most difficult choices that he's had to make. Schumer has vowed to vote no on the deal. At a press conference he talked about the upcoming vote in Congress.


SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER, (D), NEW YORK: There are some who say I can force my colleagues to vote with me and certainly I'm going to try to persuade my colleagues that my view point is right. But anyone who thinks you can force somebody to vote with you in the Senate doesn't understand the Senate, and I won't be able to force anybody to vote my way. I can argue my point of view and see if they accept it. Everyone believes this is a vote of conscience. They respect my vote of conscience and I'll respect theirs, whichever way they come out.


KEILAR: Schumer is concerned the deal leaves Iran with the potential to build a nuclear bomb after 10 years. White House press secretary, Josh Earnest, says the president's difference of opinion goes back more than a decade.

Still ahead, rocks and frozen water bottles hurled at police last night in Ferguson, Missouri. We'll take you there live to find out what's being done to calm the tensions.


[13:48:00] KEILAR: Today in Ferguson, Missouri, the city is under a state of emergency after another night of unrest in almost two dozen arrests. Angry protesters filling the street, even shutting down traffic at one point earlier in the day.




KEILAR: According to police, some protesters hurled frozen water bottles and rocks. That led authorities to push crowds back with riot gear.

CNN's Ryan Young is in Ferguson.

Give us a sense of what's happening today, Ryan.

RYAN YOUNG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We're learning a big difference from what happened to today nobody with signs, no one saying anything. Protesters are upset. They're saying they were protesting when police decided to randomly arrest people. And they were saying the ones slowest were the ones caught by police. So they're trying to figure out how to push the bounds because that was a peaceful protest and they thought they could march through the streets. 22 people were arrested overnight. 63 people were arrested yesterday afternoon because they decided to block traffic on the highway. And we do know some drivers tried to drive through the traffic and then they started kicking at cars. But those police officers stepped in and were able to arrest those 63 people as well. So there's a lot of conversation about how healing should happen.

KEILAR: There certainly is. And I think you have some sound of that, Ryan. Let's take a listen.


REV. STARSKY WILSON, CO-CHAIRMAN, FERGUSON COMMISSION: Those things which would structurally change the conversation and be advancements in policies that would cause people who have frustration that are targeted to places like the building behind me to feel more trust because there's action happening and people are listening to the cries that are coming out from young people on these streets.


[13:50:04] KEILAR: They really feel like more progress needs to be made, Ryan. What are we expecting this afternoon and this evening?

YOUNG: There's been a bigger conversation, and the violence on Monday, they believe the violence that happened on Sunday when the young man was shot is connected to someone trying to sell a looted television. When that went wrong, there were shots fired. Not protesters. There's been conversations about people infiltrating and looking alongside of them and looking for an opportunity to stand out or to settle beefs within the crowd. If there are more protests, they hope that they remain peaceful.

KEILAR: That is the hope.

Ryan Young, thanks for your report.

We'll continue the discussion on the future of Ferguson, Missouri, with the president of the NAACP, Cornell William Brooks. That's next.


[13:55:11] KEILAR: What began as the day of civil disobedience in Ferguson, Missouri, resulted in almost two dozen arrests. This week marking the one-year anniversary of the death of Michael Brown at the hands of a white police officer.

Joining me from Atlanta to talk about all of this is Cornell William Brooks, president and CEO of the NAACP. He's also leading America's Journey for Justice. It's a march from Selma, Alabama, to Washington, D.C., to demand a fair criminal justice system. The march is now just on the outskirts of Atlanta, Georgia

Cornell, as you go through this march, I know a lot of what is going on in Ferguson must be top of mind for you. What's the reaction to protests and the police response there?

CORNELL WILLIAM BROOKS, PRESIDENT & CEO, NAACP: Sure. What's happening in Ferguson is really weighing heavily on our hearts. Both me, as an individual, and, more importantly, us, as a country. It only underscores the raw reality of the racial divide and the importance of us as a nation to do something. The fact under which Michael Brown is killed is still on the books, which allows you to use lethal force against someone suspected of a nonviolent felony. The fact that Congress has passed a law to count the number of victims of police misconduct but not actually done anything to address the problem. So we're marching from Selma to Washington to put boots on the ground that we might put laws on the books. And as one rabbi put it, we're praying with our feet. Because I think it's important for us as a nation to grapple with the reality of racism by doing something constructive, affirmative. We've shed a lot of tears and grieved as a country. But it's important to bring about reform because to have violence occur on the anniversary of Michael Brown's death both desecrates his memory and detracts us from a mission lifted up in his memory. That is to say, bring about an end to police misconduct. We as a country can do something about this. That's what this is all about. When I think about sandy bland, Michael Brown, I have to believe that this stream of tragedies need not go on and on. We can do something about this. We don't have to capitulate to this stream of tragedies.

KEILAR: Your march is all about criminal justice reform. We've seen, from what happened in Ferguson, there are issues of racism, of segregation, of communities feeling protected, respected by police and vice versa.

BROOKS: That's right.

KEILAR: When you use Ferguson as an example here in why you're marching, there have been some changes but what more needs to be done and how long does this take, do you think?

BROOKS: Well, much more needs to be done. So the fact is, that in the state of Missouri, some progress has been made in terms of, say, municipal finds but, again, in terms of fundamentally changing the law, changing our policing in the state and in the country. Much more needs to be done. We have to pass the End Racial Profiling Act, which has been languishing in Congress. We've got to be clear here. We can either stand on a racial divide staring at one another or embrace one another and actually do something and bring about reform in our country. I'd like to believe that we, as a nation, can do the latter.


KEILAR: How do you translate the grassroots -- and I have about 45 seconds left here, Cornell, I'll warn you -- how do you translate grassroots to votes, to laws?

BROOKS: The way you do that, by showing up in Congress. And that we intend on doing on September 15th by the thousands, showing up and calling on Congress to do something and calling upon ourselves as a nation to do something.

KEILAR: And what will your message be when you come in to Washington, D.C., in mid-September?

BROOKS: That our lives matter and our life, as a country, matters, and they matter so much that we have to act.

KEILAR: All right. Cornell William Brooks, with the NAACP, thank you so much.

BROOKS: Thanks, ma'am.

KEILAR: We appreciate you being with us.

That is it for us. I'll be back at 5:00 p.m. in "The Situation Room."

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And for our viewers in the North America, "Newsroom" with Brooke Baldwin starts right now.