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Christie Sharpens Attacks On Rubio At Debate; Bush Compares Rubio To Obama At Debate; Christie Slams Rubio's "Memorized" 25-Second Speech; Cruz Misstates CNN's Reporting At GOP Debate; U.S., Other Nations Condemn North Korea Rocket Launch. Aired 6-6:30a ET

Aired February 7, 2016 - 06:00   ET




[06:30:13] CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everybody. I'm Christi Paul.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Victor Blackwell. Good to be with you this Sunday morning. There is a lot to talk about from last night's GOP debate, of course, but we also have following developing news this morning.

PAUL: Out of North Korea, they fired a long range rocket overnight angering the U.S. and many in that region. The U.N. in fact is planning an emergency Security Council meeting in just a few hours.

BLACKWELL: We'll go live to Seoul in just a moment, but first let's go out to John Berman. He is in Manchester, New Hampshire for all the details on the debate and the countdown just two days until the New Hampshire primary. John, good morning.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning to you guys. Yes, just two days before the voting here. It feels like there's been a campaign reset and for Marco Rubio that might not feel so nice. That's because his time on that stage last night was not so nice. Mostly at the hands of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.


GOVERNOR CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The fact is Marco you shouldn't compare yourself to Joe Biden and you shouldn't say that's what we're doing. Here's exactly what we are doing.

You have not been involved in a consequential decision where you had to be held accountable. You simply haven't. This is a difference between being a governor who actually has to be responsible for problems and not answering a question.

The question was did he fight for his legislation it's abundantly clear that he didn't. I like Marco Rubio and he is a smart person and a good guy, but he simply does not have the experience to be president of the United States and make these decisions -- SENATOR MARCO RUBIO (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Let's dispel with

the fiction that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing. He knows exactly what he's doing.

CHRISTIE: That's what Washington, D.C. does, the drive by shot at the beginning with incorrect and incomplete information and then the memorized 25-second speech that is exactly what his advisors gave him.

RUBIO: Chris, your state got hit by a massive snow storm two weeks ago. You didn't even want to go back. They had to shame you into going back.


RUBIO: He didn't want to go back.

CHRISTIE: And the fact is I went back so -- wait a second. Is that one of the skills you get as a United States senator ESP also?


BERMAN: Wow. All three governor, Chris Christie, John Kasich, Jeb Bush, they all had a bigger presence on that stage last night. And Jeb Bush wielded a bigger stick, which he swung at Donald Trump, getting the crowd on his side over the attempted use of eminent domain at his New Jersey casinos.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: A lot of times you will have --

JEB BUSH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: How tough is it to take property from an elderly woman? How tough is it --

TRUMP: A lot of times --


BERMAN: The crowd had a clear favorite there. Let's go straight to our Phil Mattingly with much more on this final debate before Tuesday's critical primary here -- Phil.

PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, John, Chris Christie started this week just about four miles down the road here in Bedford, swiping at Marco Rubio. It turns out that was just kind of an opening act and others were more than happy to get into the game.


ANNOUNCER: Florida Senator Marco Rubio.

MATTINGLY (voice-over): A pile up at the entrance.

ANNOUNCER: Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush. MATTINGLY: Or pile on among the candidates. It took all of 10 minutes for the new reality of the GOP race to show through. Marco Rubio is the target. A target for Chris Christie eager to prove he has the experience and Rubio does not.

CHRISTIE: You know what the shame is, Marco. The shame is that you would actually criticize somebody for showing up to work, plowing the streets, getting the trains run back on time when you have never been responsible for that in your entire life.

RUBIO: He didn't want to go back.

CHRISTIE: And the fact is I went back --

RUBIO: You didn't want to go back, Chris.

CHRISTIE: Wait a second. Is now one of the skills you get as United States senator ESP also?

MATTINGLY: And it's harder for Jeb Bush.

BUSH: Look, let's be clear. Marco Rubio is a gifted, gifted politician. And he may have the skills to be a president of the United States, but we've tried it the old way with Barack Obama, with soaring eloquence, and we didn't get a leader. We got someone who wants to divide the country up.

[06:05:07]MATTINGLY: Rising in the polls after a stronger than expected finish in Iowa.

RUBIO: I got mentioned can I --

MATTINGLY: Rubio attempting to turn back the criticisms of inexperience and comparisons to President Obama like this.

RUBIO: (Inaudible) with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing. He knows exactly what he's doing. He is trying to change this country.

MATTINGLY: Rubio using that line several times and Christie turning it against him.

RUBIO: This notion that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing is just not true.

CHRISTIE: There it is. The memorized 25-second speech. There it is, everybody.

MATTINGLY: Trump's first time on a debate stage since he skipped his chance in Iowa on defense over his use of eminent domain in his business career.

BUSH: What Donald Trump did was use eminent domain to take the property of an elderly woman on the strip in Atlantic City. That is not public purpose. That is downright wrong. Here's the problem with that. The problem was it was to -- TRUMP: Jeb wants to be a tough guy tonight. I didn't take the


BUSH: You tried. And you lost in the court.

TRUMP: The woman ultimately didn't want to do that.

BUSH: To turn this into a limousine parking lot for his casinos is not public use.

MATTINGLY: Seeming to frustrate the billionaire candidate.

BUSH: Taking property from an elderly woman.

TRUMP: Let me talk. Quiet.

BUSH: How tough is it?

TRUMP: A lot of times -- that's all of his donors and special interests out there. So what it is.

MATTINGLY: For Bush, Christie, and Ohio Governor John Kasich, the debate marking a crucial point for their respective last stands of their campaigns, each pinning their hopes on a strong finish Tuesday night.

JOHN KASICH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I have to say after being here, every one of my 100 town hall meetings in New Hampshire were a lot more fun than what I saw here today. So much more positive.

MATTINGLY: Iowa winner, Ted Cruz, with this message to Ben Carson for perceived dirty tactics in the state.

CRUZ: When I transpired, I apologize to him then and I do so now. Ben, I'm sorry.

MATTINGLY: All setting the stage for a raucous final 72-hours in the granite state.


MATTINGLY: John, raucous indeed, I think we can expect that over the couple of days. Now a couple of things to note, first and foremost, why this debate mattered so much. Just three days away from the primary, but as many as 30 percent of likely Republican voters still haven't made up their mind.

Infamous or famous for being late deciding in this states. Candidates still have time to work and time to swing votes. Another note, Rubio's campaign quickly coming out after the debate.

Touting fundraising numbers, saying they raised three times as much in the debate last night as they had in any debate prior. No question Marco Rubio was rattled at least more so than we've seen up to this point. But his debate trying to put a positive spin on the night for what many believed is now the frontrunner -- John. BERMAN: Thanks so much. I want to bring Mark Preston, the executive editor for CNN Politics and also joining us is CNN political commentators, Ben Ferguson and Bakari Sellers. Bakari is a former South Carolina state representative who is supporting Hillary Clinton.

Mark, I want to start with you because this morning a lot of people are asking, we watched all these debates before. Marco Rubio was so smooth. What happened last night?

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: He was so smooth because he wasn't taking firing from both sides. He got the New Jersey treatment last night from Chris Christie, who just was relentless on Marco Rubio calling into the question his executive experience, the fact that he is a U.S. senator and doesn't make any decisions.

One of the most interesting lines last night and there were very many of them, was Chris Christie saying, you know, a senator wakes up every morning wondering what 30-second speech I can give on the Senate floor. A governor wakes up and actually have to do something, very effective last night.

BERMAN: So Bakari, you know as a politician the one thing you want to avoid is playing into whatever negative stereotypes exist of you. And for Marco Rubio that the idea that he's robotic, rehearsed.

I want to play that sound again just to reinforce this point here about what people are talking about this morning with Rubio going back to that line about President Obama. Let's listen.


RUBIO: Let's dispel with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing. He knows exactly what he's doing. He's trying to change this country. This notion that Barack Obama doesn't know what he is doing is just not --

CHRISTIE: There it is, the memorized 25-second speech. There it is everybody.


BERMAN: There it is. There it is. You heard Chris Christie say it. It was almost as if Rubio walked right into it, Bakari.

BAKARI SELLERS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: He did. And Marco Rubio used that line last night four times. Chris Christie set up this narrative and Marco Rubio walked into the trap with this very awkward phrase about Barack Obama and it's not being a game.

And it was just an awkward, awkward phrase. I think what we saw last night is Chris Christie may not make it out of New Hampshire.

[06:10:05]I thought Jeb bush and John Kasich did extremely well, but if it is a Republican president, 45th president of the United States, you will see not named Marco Rubio. Chris Christie be the attorney general. He firmed his way up and was the lead blocker for everybody

else last night and maybe knocked Marco Rubio down to fourth or fifth place.

BERMAN: He's not getting invited over to that Super Bowl party I think at the Rubio's hotel room today that's for sure.


BERMAN: Ben, in a multi-candidate field, you know, Candidate A goes after Candidate B, it doesn't necessarily help Candidate A. Sometimes it helps Candidate C, if you know what I'm saying here. So this morning who do you think benefitted most from the debate last night, Ben?

BEN FERGUSON, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think Donald Trump certainly benefitted. I also think Ted Cruz benefitted because neither of them got were the center of attention. Neither got beat up. Rubio really did.

And Chris Christie I think had a night where it was very memorable and so I think that's real part of this that people are going to be talking about moving forward.

The only downside for everybody on stage is the fact that when Donald Trump showed up for this debate, I think they should have made him the center of the attack. Not necessarily the attention but the attack.

And they didn't do that last night which only helps him after a bad showing in Iowa. And Rubio is now going to be fighting again to get in that fourth place, maybe even fifth place and that was probably the worst night for him debate wise he's had since the very beginning.

And Christ Christie did an unbelievable job last night really defining him as the senator that's really good at memorizing things. Whether that's a fair, you know, assessment of him that's up for the voters to decide, but it certainly was a solid performance by Christie.

BERMAN: And everyone, remember, 30 percent at least of the voters here in New Hampshire don't decide until the last minute. Equal number of them independent voters who could vote in either race so really so much up for grabs here, which make the night last like that night so pivotal.

Ben Ferguson, Bakari Sellers, Mark Preston, stick around because we have some news. Thank you so much guys. That news is breaking news. A major announcement for CNN, a brand new debate coming your way hosted by us, Mark Preston, the man who made it happen. Give me the details.

PRESTON: Well, John, you know, there's been so much attention on Flint, Michigan. A community that has been rocked by toxic water. CNN will be in Flint, Michigan on March 6th now to host a Democratic presidential debate. This is something that both candidates had asked for that they

wanted to go there and take their message there. CNN will host that debate. It is a Sunday evening, March 6th, Flint, Michigan.

BERMAN: Michigan votes March 8, right? It's two days before the Michigan race for the Democrats.

PRESTON: Two days before the Michigan race as well as Mississippi as well, another big state that will hold a primary that day.

BERMAN: And just to be clear Hillary Clinton is actually going to Flint, Michigan today, correct?

PRESTON: In a few hours to meet with community leaders and to talk about the crisis.

BERMAN: You know, and it is a place in an area that matters not just in Michigan, which clearly does matter there and it is good that there is focus on that place and that state for the voters of that state. But also people around the country are minority voters, disproportionately affected by the Flint water crisis.

PRESTON: Absolutely. And I believe it is 57 percent African- American. I believe 40 percent of the folks in that city are below the poverty line. So it really is indicative of even broader issues facing communities.

BERMAN: And the DNC sanctioning this debate. All of a sudden allowing more debates than they originally planned. March 6th, CNN debate in Flint, Michigan, a very big announcement. Thanks to you, Mark.

All right, Ted Cruz, he blamed CNN for his campaign mishap in Iowa regarding Ben Carson. I don't know if mishap is the right word for his campaign shenanigans there. He made some false claims on the debate stage last night. We'll show you why.

Plus a developing story this morning. North Korea launches a long range rocket setting off a chain reaction of backlash around the world.

Also live not from New Hampshire, live from New York, Bernie Sanders with Larry David on "Saturday Night Live." A comedy ensued.



SANDERS: I am Bernie Sanders Witsky but we're going change it when we get to America so it doesn't sound quite so Jewish.



[06:17:57] BERMAN: So Ted Cruz didn't swing much at his opponents last night, but he did swing at CNN and he missed. He missed represented the facts and timing of reporting about Dr. Ben Carson's side trip off the campaign trail after Iowa as Tom Foreman clearly explains.

TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: At absolutely no time has CNN reported that Ben Carson is dropping out of this presidential race. Not on air, not online. Not anywhere. And yet around the Iowa caucuses, the Cruz campaign suggested just that and blamed it on CNN. He did it again in the debate. Listen.


SENATOR TED CRUZ (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: They didn't correct that story until 9:15 that night. So from 6:30 p.m. until 9:15, that is what CNN was reporting.


FOREMAN: And that is an outright lie. Let's explain what really happened. Before the caucuses began, our Chris Moody tweeted, "Ben Carson will likely speak at his victory party in Iowa because caucus results are in so he can catch a flight."

Then he added, "Carson won't go to New Hampshire, South Carolina, but instead will head home to Florida for some R&R. He will be in D.C. Thursday for the National Prayer Breakfast."

And then he said, "Ben Carson's campaign tells me he plans to stay in the race beyond Iowa no matter what the results are tonight." All of that, three tweets in less than 2 minutes. More than 15 minutes before the caucuses opened in Iowa.

And then 45 minutes after this, he hit it again by saying, "Folks, Ben Carson is just making a brief stop at home in Florida tonight. And campaign says he'll be back on the campaign trail by Wednesday."

Even if that is what Cruz is talking about this is well before 9:00 or later than that. Yes, our campaign staff talked about these tweets because they are unusual. They noted that it would be strange for any presidential candidate to not go directly to New Hampshire.

But again in no way, shape or form did they say Ben Carson was dropping out. That was an assumption made by Cruz's campaign. This is something that our executive have gone over with the campaign looking at the timeline.

[06:20:08]They have been called out for the dishonest handling of it by "The Washington Post," "Politifact," "Politico," and many other media outlets.

So for the candidate to stand on the stage and say it again, it is false. It was false from the get go and it remains false. You can find out a whole lot more about our reality checks by going to check. BERMAN: All right, our thanks to Tom Foreman. Great job with that. Here is how a "Washington Post" cartoonist captured the moment from last night. CNN has reached out to Ted Cruz. He has refused to join us and address the incident this morning. Christie, Victor, back to you guys in Atlanta.

BLACKWELL: All right, John, thank you so much. We're going to talk about this developing story we're following this morning. The rocket launch that's angered leaders around the world. Leaders from Asia, Europe, the U.S. condemning North Korea's launch of a long range rocket. We have details on what the rocket was used for reported and how the U.N. is now weighing in.

PAUL: It's Super Bowl 50. We have details on Beyonce's surprise announcement just in time for her Super Bowl performance with Coldplay.


PAUL: New this morning, North Korea has launched a long range rocket claiming that it is carrying a satellite for, quote, "peaceful scientific purposes" but the U.S. and many other countries are denouncing this launch calling it a front for a ballistic missile test.

[06:25:00]BLACKWELL: Secretary of State John Kerry released this statement, "This is the second time in over a month that the DPRK has chosen to conduct a major provocation threatening not only the security of the Korean Peninsula but that of the region and the United States as well."

CNN's Paula Hancocks is live in Seoul this morning. Paula, what else do we know about this test?

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Victor and Christie, according to North Korea, it was a grand success. We know it happened at 9:00 a.m. Pyongyang time that's about 11 hours ago now.

They say that it took 9 minutes and 46 seconds for satellite to reach orbit. As far as they are concerned it is working perfectly and they say they will launch many more.

Now, of course, the question is did they launch a satellite and did it reach orbit? According to South Korea's Defense Ministry, the minister says that he believes it appears to have a reached orbit, but they don't know if it is functioning as it should.

They say it will take some time before they find that out. And also we are hearing about the timing of this launch, which is very interesting. The intelligence agencies here in South Korea briefing lawmakers who in turn briefed us saying that this was carefully choreographed to be before the lunar new year and also before the Super Bowl in the U.S.

And they wanted to make sure it was good weather as well because weather conditions obviously are very important when it comes to this kind of a rocket launch.

They said they wanted to maximize the international attention. So a very interesting perspective there. But as you can imagine the international condemnation has come flooding in.

The South Korean president saying it is a challenge to world peace. The Japanese prime minister saying it is totally unacceptable. Ban Ki-Moon of the United Nations saying that it is deplorable and even China, one of North Korea's very few allies, saying, that it regrets that this has happened -- Victor, Christie, back to you.

BLACKWELL: Paula, of course, the fear is that this is a front for their ballistic missile program and getting to the point of carrying a nuclear weapon. Is there any indication of how close North Korea is to miniaturizing a nuclear warhead?

HANCOCKS: Nobody knows for sure. This is not a transparent country. It is very difficult to find out exactly what their capabilities are. There are some who believe they are a couple of years away, but there are some others who believe that they may even have that capability now.

We simply don't know. But we do know is that a rocket that is used to launch a satellite into space, which we have potentially seen today, is essentially the same as a rocket that you can put a nuclear warhead on.

And this is why everybody is so concerned around the world that this is seen as just a front for an intercontinental ballistic missile test.

BLACKWELL: All right, Paula Hancocks for us in Seoul this morning. Thank you so much.

PAUL: And still to come, Bernie Sanders trying to appeal to young voters ahead of New Hampshire's primary. And what's the best way to do that? Just get on "Saturday Night Live," of course.

BLACKWELL: "SNL" will do it. Plus, could this be Peyton Manning's final game? He's been through four Super Bowls already now. Manning is looking for a win on the big stage. We'll have a live report from California in a moment.