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GOP Hoosier State Showdown; Will the GOP Come Together If Trump Wins?; Hillary Clinton on Working with Bernie Sanders; Looking Towards Indiana. Aired 8-9a ET

Aired May 1, 2016 - 08:00   ET



[08:00:15] JOHN KING, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Is this the ticket?

SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You deserve to know exactly where a candidate stands.

KING: Ted Cruz bets it all on Indiana.

Donald Trump calls it desperate and looks for a knockout.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If we win in Indiana, it's over.

KING: And about that new tone.

TRUMP: My wife said, "Be more presidential." I said, "I don't want to be presidential. I want to win. I got to win."

KING: Plus, Bernie Sanders hopes for a May miracle, but cuts his staff and shifts his focus.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Our job, whether we win or whether we do not win is to transform not only our country but the Democratic Party.

KING: INSIDE POLITICS, the biggest stories sourced by the best reporters, now.


KING: Welcome to INSIDE POLITICS. I'm John King. Thanks for sharing your Sunday morning.

Two days now until the Indiana primary that could be the last gasp for Ted Cruz and Stop Trump movement that, forgive me, so far has proven itself about as effective as a squirt gun at a wildfire.

Three big questions at this Midwest crossroads: One, after eight years of Barack Obama, who will be center stage and comedian in-in chief at next year's White House Correspondent's Dinner?


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Ted had a tough week. He went to Indiana, Hoosier Country, stood on a basketball court and called the hoop a basketball ring.

What else is in his lexicon? Baseball sticks? Football hats? But sure, I'm the foreign one.


KING: Question two, if the billionaire businessman wins in Indiana Tuesday, will the Republican establishment and grassroots conservative forces stop fighting Trump? Will they wave the white flag of surrender and rally behind a front-runner who seems, listen to this, ambivalent at best about the idea of party unity?


TRUMP: There has to be unity in our party. Now, with that being said, would I win, can I win without it, I think so. To be honest, I think so because they're going to vote for me. They're not voting for, you know, Jeb Bush didn't support you. Big deal, like I care.


KING: Like he cares.

And question three: how nasty will it get? Trump says Hillary Clinton succeeds only because of the woman card, her gender he says, and she hardly seems shy about swinging back.


TRUMP: You know, Hillary, crooked Hillary, right?

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I have a lot of experience dealing with men who sometimes get off the reservation in the way they behave and how they speak.


KING: More on that in a moment.

With us this morning to share their reporting and their insights, an INSIDE POLITICS first, an all-CNN reporting team -- Maeve Reston, Jeff Zeleny, Manu Raju, and Sara Murray.

Now, hyperbole is all too common in politics and in political reporting. But The Indiana primary Tuesday is the real big deal as Ted Cruz says the biggest most important day of were the Republican race so far. And the numbers don't lie.

Take a peek here, Donald Trump when you add in the unbound delegates who have pledged their support to Trump, Donald Trump is now over 1,000 mark. He's got a pretty healthy lead over Ted Cruz. Donald Trump could survive this. Let's say Ted Cruz wins Indiana, Donald Trump comes in second, Donald

Trump could survive that, especially if he wins at the congressional level a bit, and picks up some delegates. That would still keep the magic number of 1,237 within reach.

But can Ted Cruz survive second place? What if Ted Cruz wins? And even if Ted Cruz picks up some delegates there, can Ted Cruz survive that? Well, he knows it's a risk, that's why he went all in this past week, picking a running mate, even though he's running, look at the map, more than had 400 delegates behind Mr. Trump.

Now, Indiana is a conservative state. Cruz says he's the only true conservative still standing. Most smart Republicans will tell you that if Indiana is Trump red late Tuesday night, especially after the five-state sweep by Trump in the Northeast last week, the psychology of the Republican race will change more dramatically than the math.

And listen here, Ted Cruz gets it.


CRUZ: We are at the edge of a cliff staring downward and this is the common sense and good judgment of had the Hoosier State that is the one thing that stands between us and plunging over the cliff.


CRUZ: Plunging over the cliff. Sometimes politicians ignore the expectations. Sometimes they try to change expectations.

It seems, Sara, pretty clear there that Ted Cruz gets it. If he is second in Indiana, even if it's close, a lot of people will be saying, forget about it.

SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Yes. I think people are starting to openly talk about what campaigns have been privately talking about for the last couple of weeks, which is Indiana is kind of -- it's the make or break moment. It's the make or break moment for Never Trump, it's the make or break moment for Ted Cruz.

And, honestly, I think there already is sort of a feeling of resignation among Washington Republicans, they look at Indiana and say, this doesn't necessarily look the same way that Wisconsin did.

[08:05:04] You know, Ted Cruz is leading in the polls there, ten days out. He had all of the support in the state. And having been in Indiana this week, I can tell you it doesn't really feel that way on the ground. So, if Cruz is able to pull it out there, I think it's going to be very close.

KING: If you average the polls, it looks like a narrow Trump lead, but it still looks pretty competitive.

So, if you're Ted Cruz, you try to play your best card at the end. Brand new ads the campaign announced yesterday trying to link Donald Trump to somebody Republicans just don't like, Hillary Clinton. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AD NARRATOR: Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are two sides of the same coin. Both support the Obamacare individual mandate. Both support taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood and letting transgender men go in little girls' bathrooms. Trump and Hillary, do we really want two big government liberals on the ballot in November?


KING: I've said this before, but if Ted Cruz loses Indiana Tuesday night, is it not going to regret the months of being Donald Trump's friend and maybe not starting that a big earlier?

MAEVE RESTON, CNN NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER: For sure, and we were talking how that was a brilliant strategy, his drafting strategy, right, behind Donald Trump the whole time. But I actually -- I'm going to give California voters sort of the benefit of the doubt here and say that, you know, five weeks is a long time between Indiana and when we get to the very end of this process, on June 7th. And I think it's true that this is a big moment for the anti-Trump forces in the sense a lot of donors are watching and have a lot to do with whether money is flowing or not.

But sometimes California doesn't like to go with the rest of the nation. So, we'll see, there could be some surprises in there.

KING: Manu?

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: You know, for Cruz, it's been very successful so far in winning states when he set expectations high. He did that in Iowa. He did that in Texas on March 1st, his home state, and in Wisconsin. In all the states he won and reset the narrative.

He's doing that here and he may not win. So, how does he rebound from an Indiana loss, even if there are big states left like California and he's clearly all about the convention right now, denying the 1,237? The narrative is critical and if he loses, it's really going to hurt his narrative and momentum going forward.

KING: And yet, Donald Trump, Jeff, is at it. Donald Trump gets it. He gets if he wins Indiana, you're right, the math will depend heavily on California. It's the biggest basket of delegates. But Donald Trump understands the psychology of the race, if I can win Indiana. He's starting to talk about maybe I need to unify the party, he wants to get to 1,237 as close as soon as possible.

And yet, he kind of mocks Jeb Bush out at the California Republican convention and idea of party unity. At this moment he wants a conservative state to back him, listen to Donald Trump saying, yes, I guess I'm with you.


TRUMP: Folks, I'm a conservative. But at this point, who cares, we've got to straighten out the country. I mean, give me a break.



KING: What is that?


JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: This week I think is the most consequential week since Iowa, and in terms of what's happening on both sides of the border, you can feel this contest shifting. If it happens after Indiana or keeps going further, the Nebraska primary a week from Tuesday, a little plug in.

KING: All politics is local.

ZELENY: But I do think that people -- you can feel Republicans here when you talk to them on Capitol Hill and other places they are resigned to the fact that Donald Trump is almost sure to be their nominee. So Donald more interestingly is what type of a nominee he will be by then. He keeps dropping out signals here and I think that right there, who cares if you need a conservative.


RESTON: Yes. And it's, of course, what everyone feared, you know, all of the Republicans who weren't sure of his credentials and his shifts on abortion and for a lot of people they may feel like the nightmare is.


ZELENY: And if you read George Will this morning, though. He says, OK, I'm resigned Donald Trump will be the nominee. Republicans shouldn't vote for him, we should get this cancer out of the party now.

So, that's the phase we're entering.

MURRAY: But I think this is also why he could be a really tricky person to run against in the general election for Democrats. And I think that's one of the cautionary tales, one of the lessons they've taken away from watching Republican primary, is look, if you underestimate Donald Trump, if you treat him like a joke, you're really underestimating this well of support he's built up.

A lot of people the same who have supported Bernie Sanders are also taking a second look at Donald Trump and I think that Democrats should probably --

RAJU: And that's one reason why, John, you're seeing a lot of establishment figures suddenly say, oh, maybe Donald Trump won't be so bad as a nominee because he can bring new voters into the party, even though polls say that he's losing pretty badly to Hillary Clinton, they think that it will change in the general election. KING: Right. You did some great reporting on this, this past week and my question is he's had a trickle of establishment support. People saying, look, I might not love him, but he's going to be guy, let's just deal with it, let's get on board.

And if he wins Indiana, I expect that trickle may turn into a flood. However you have this final, you used the word joke. I said the stop Trump movement has been about effective bringing a squirt gun to a big fire, because you have all these people with big names and they have big reputations.

[08:10:04] and a lot of them have big money or the access to big money, and they just simply been unable to stop Trump.

So, the Cruz campaign gets excited this past week because Mike Pence, the conservative governor of Indiana, someone who thought about running in 2016, they finally get word Mike Pence is going to go on the radio and he's going to endorse Ted Cruz, sort of. If you're going to stop Donald Trump and you're going to get a big endorsement from the Cruz campaign, is this exactly how to say it?


GOV. MIKE PENCE (R), INDIANA: I particularly want to commend Donald Trump who I think has given voice to the frustration of millions of working Americans with a lack of progress in Washington, D.C., and I'm also particularly grateful that Donald Trump has taken a strong stand for Hoosier jobs when we saw jobs in the Carrier Company abruptly announce leaving Indiana, not to leave for another state but for Mexico. I'm grateful.


KING: He went on in the next sentence to say, but he's going to vote for Ted Cruz. But how do you Donald Trump when, you know, I'm going to vote for the other guy, but Donald Trump is just awesome?


ZELENY: This is the whole issue, though, no one ever wanted, there are a lot of people in the establishment didn't want Ted Cruz. So, he's like the worst plan B possible for a lot of people. But people, Sara is absolutely right, they think that Donald Trump has the best shot of complicating the Democrats' path to win back the White House or holding the White House. They think he can beat Hillary Clinton much more than Ted Cruz.

Ted Cruz, the matchup is not nearly as sort of mysterious or, you know, up in the air. A Donald Trump/Hillary Clinton matchup will actually be competitive and we don't know the ending of that, we don't know sort of the route of battleground states. So, you know, I thought that endorsement said it all there. People are ready to move on.

KING: And you mentioned there, you made clear they don't think Ted Cruz is a great plan B. There's a great debate in the Republican Party about this, because they're afraid of Trump, they despise Cruz, they're trying to figure out what to do.

Adding his voice to the debate this past week, something he has said before. But at the moment, is John Boehner, the former Republican speaker of the House, look, grassroots conservatives don't like Boehner, and guess what? You'll get the impression here he probably doesn't like Ted Cruz.




BOEHNER: In Washington, I have as many Democrat friends as I have Republican friends. I get along with almost everybody, but I have never worked with a more miserable son of a (EXPLETIVE DELETED) in my life.



KING: He left -- unclear how he feels about Ted Cruz.


RAJU: You know, I actually asked some congressman about that and one Charlie Dent, moderate from Pennsylvania, he said, well, I wouldn't have called him miserable.


RAJU: He said, I think that Lucifer would be upset, so call his spokesman for comment from being compared to Ted Cruz.

It's really brutal on Capitol Hill. A lot of folk simply just are in that never Cruz movement, even if we haven't seen a lot of that.

RESTON: I think Donald Trump has a point here that we all pay so much attention to these potential general election matchups but we really haven't seen what Donald Trump will do yet to Hillary Clinton should she be the nominee, and I think that there's a long way to go seeing who would be the stronger nominee up against her.

KING: Donald Trump has broken just about or rewritten -- broken or rewritten just about every rule so far. So, what's to say he won't do it again?

Everybody sit tight. A lot more to talk about.

Up next, Donald Trump's on again/mostly off again work at being presidential, and his big time break from traditional Republican foreign policy script.

First, though, politicians say the darned things. A bit more from last night, President Obama and his farewell White House Correspondents' Dinner.


OBAMA: Is this dinner too tacky for the Donald? What could he possibly be doing instead? Is he at home eating a Trump steak? Tweeting out insults to Angela Merkel?

Hillary trying to appeal to young voters is a little bit like your relative who just signed up for Facebook, you know? Dear America, did you get my poke? Is it appearing on your wall? I'm not sure I'm using this right. Love, Aunt Hillary.



[08:18:30] KING: Welcome back.

The "Let Trump be Trump" camp has a new member, Donald J. Trump.


TRUMP: My wife said, "Be more presidential." I said, "I don't want to be presidential. I want to win. I've got to win, OK?"

You know what presidential -- you know what presidential is, they're calling you names and you're standing here like this, I'm the president, I should not fight back. In the meantime, you get your (EXPLETIVE DELETED) kicked, OK?


KING: Still, Mr. Trump did give a more measured approach to try this week, he used a teleprompter to calmly deliver a major foreign policy address. There were questions and some contradictions. But one dominant theme: America first.


TRUMP: On trade, on immigration, on foreign policy, the jobs, incomes, and security of the American worker will always be my first priority.


KING: Now, more than anything else, if you listened or watched the speech proved beyond any doubt if Trump emerges at the Republican nominee, you can throw your trusty GOP policy guidebook in the trash.


TRUMP: We will no longer surrender this country or its people to the false song of globalism.

(END VIDEO CLIP) KING: We're talking about this earlier, the false song of globalism. The Republican Party is your international, free trade, integrate economies pro-globalism, at least today's Republican Party. What do we get with Trump's Republican Party?

RESTON: I mean, I think that's what we're watching to see and to Sara's point earlier the idea there are a lot of people out there in the country who are drawn to Bernie Sanders' message, for example, on trade and, you know, not being the world's policeman.

[08:20:07] I think that, you know, it will be fascinating to watch whether or not Donald Trump with the issues can expand the circle of the Republican Party and maybe that's not being reflected in the polls yet. That's why these general election matchups don't mean so much at this point.

RAJU: It was interesting to see how his foreign policy is received. You have on one side, the people who wrote it off and dismissed it and said, well, he's just reading been the lines and not what he actually thinks when he speaks without a teleprompter. Some folks in the Republican foreign policy establishment were open to it.

I talked to Bob Corker, the Senate Foreign Relations chairman, who said this was outstanding speech. I asked him, what do you like about it in particular? He said, well, Donald Trump scares foreign leaders and that could be a good thing, a welcome change from the last eight years.

So, in some ways, he's winning some folks or in the foreign policy world because of his comment.

KING: We have to be unpredictable he says. The interesting part, too, is which Trump you get on any given day or any given hour, in the sense that he was very -- whether you agree or disagree with what he said there, he was very calm in his delivery, very measured, read through the teleprompter, tried to conduct the dots, a lot of people say they don't connect, but he tried to explain his views on foreign policy.

He did not in that mention building a war or asking Mexico to pay for it. A lot of Republicans worry about that language. They think it turns off key voters. But when he gets back on the campaign trail, he did it in Indiana right after the speech, and then in California, he goes back to being the Trump we're more familiar with.


TRUMP: In Los Angeles, homicides are up 10.2 percent, rapes are up 6 percent, aggravated assault is up 27.5 percent. What the hell is happening in this area?

AUDIENCE: Build that wall! Build that wall! Build that wall! Build that wall!

TRUMP: We are going to build that wall, folks. We're going to build that wall. (END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: A lot of people may not like it but that line works with his voters and his base, and it's probably going to be a bumper sticker in the fall campaign if he's nominee.

ZELENY: Right. It does with primary voters. The question once this expands to the main stage here, where there are so many, many more millions of voters will it work in that area.

So, I think, you know, we're going to see him speaking to different groups of people. But I mean -- I think, usually in primaries we see the growth and evolution of a candidate and once they reached the general, they're sort of fully formed. Not true this time.

We're going to see the evolution and growth of Donald Trump. We don't know the type of candidate he'll be in the coming months if he's going to actually win. So, I think it's fascinating. But he knows where his crowd is. He loves the roar of the crowd there.

RESTON: It's why it's so fascinating that the primary process carried on through all of the states because you have seen him collide as he did in California over the last couple of days with a lot of protesters who feel so vehemently what Jeff is talking about. And I think it's going to be fascinating to see over the next five weeks in California, you know, Donald Trump really having to own the policies and see what that means in a state that's very hostile to that rhetoric.

MURRAY: I think for Republicans, you were talking about the two different Donald Trumps. I mean, that's what makes some Republicans feel more comfortable about Donald Trump, the fact that he can go there and deliver the red meat when he's out on the Trump, but then he can adjust, he can pull back, he can deliver the foreign policy speech. They saw the first inklings on the debate stage when Donald Trump was more reserved and sort of let the other candidates fight it out.

And they said, OK, maybe this is a guy who can moderate himself. And I think that they're hoping you'll see bigger doses of that in the general election. But, you know, it's hard to ask people to change entirely. Eight like asking my dad to give up cigarettes and steak. It's not going to happen.

RAJU: I emphasis changes, he can't abandon the wall, that's a central piece of his platform. Does he not emphasize it as much as he tries to win states like Colorado, Nevada, Florida, with huge Hispanic population which he's underwater right now pretty significantly.

ZELENY: If he doesn't, Democrats will be happy to remind people of his build the wall.

RESTON: And Ted Cruz is too far apart from Donald Trump on the issues anyway. That's the choice that the Republicans have.

KING: To your point, if he moderates in some ways we still don't know if he is the nominee, do they try to find a conservative to run as a third party, or do they at least shadow him around the country, conservatives say he's changing his mind. That's another layer of the campaign we'll get to a little. We have Indiana and California and some of others.

To the Democrats next, though, a delicate moment for Bernie Sanders and a new contest of Hillary Clinton's diplomatic skills.

But, first, our INSIDE POLITICS quiz question this week, here we go. Ready?

Who should Donald Trump pick as his running mate? We'll give you five choices here. Vote right now to Look at your choices, give us a pick, we'll give you the results in a few minutes.


[08:29:06] KING: Bernie Sanders, whether you like him or not, is at an awkward moment. He gets the math and wants to be a loyal Democrat but he also doesn't want to let his supporters down, or leave any delegates on the table. So it's interesting to watch the blunt "establishment be damned" insurgent to try a little more of a delegate balancing act.


SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We are in this campaign to win, but if we do not win, we intend to win every delegate that we can, so that when we go Philadelphia in July, we're going to have the votes to put together the strongest progressive agenda that any political party has ever seen.


KING: Now, Hillary Clinton has led this vie before as the losing candidate. The roles were reversed from 2008. But, listen here, as Secretary Clinton tells Jake Tapper, you'll see this interview next on "STATE OF THE UNION", she's confident the sequel will have a happy ending.


[08:30:07] CLINTON: We're going to talk. We're going to work together. The connection between my supporters and myself and Senator Sanders and his supporters are very strong. We really are going to be unified and have a tremendous progressive agenda to run on in the fall.


KING: She wants that connection to be strong, Jeff. But is it at the moment, if you still look, Senator Sanders seems to be moving in the way that you would say a responsible Democrat would, holding out some hope, up for surprise in Indiana, but acknowledging the math and trying to think more about the platform. But is her saying we have a strong connection, that doesn't create a strong connection, does it? ZELENY,: It doesn't at all. And the reality is Bernie Sanders has moved a long ways this is week, I think. That he is not a Democratic Party guy necessarily, but he is an institutionalist. He's been in Congress so long. He knows that he is not here to sort of blow things up.

His supporters are very much a different situation. Now, you talk to Bernie Sanders' supporters at rallies, other things, the feeling there of animosity against Hillary Clinton, I detect, is much stronger than eight years ago from Clinton to Obama.

And I went back actually on Friday and read every story I wrote from mid-May through mid-July in 2008. Just kind of remember that. And the Clinton campaign is having a bit of origin of history here about how quietly she went into the night. They didn't at all. We all remember that DNC meeting at the Hotel here in Washington where Clinton supporters were screaming at David Plouffe and other things. So, they have to give them a little bit more time. She knows that. That's why she is sort of impatient here. But there, it's still another sort of chapter to play out here.

But the Bernie Sanders supporters, yes, he can influence them, some, but this has to be a process. And I do think that she has to win them over. She has to sort of excite them. This is not all on Bernie Sanders.

RESTON: And when you talk to them at those rallies, I mean it's so true, they are so cool if not just cold to Hillary Clinton. It's not even so much anger, but you just wonder if it's one of those wild cards as we look ahead to the general election. Can she really turn those people out? Will she really be able to replicate that Obama coalition, because there just isn't that fire for her among the people who are supporting him.

RAJU: And a lot of the supporters are just not -- are not Democrats.


RAJU: I mean they're independents. They're young people. The people who may not come to the polls in November and will they be attracted to what Trump is saying? If you mean, jet latches onto that populist rhetoric in the general election, perhaps, and that's one of the risks.

RESTON: Or, just hang out at home.

MURRAY: Right.

RESONT: I mean, right.

KING: And the question is what the Indiana matters in that regard. In the sense that the math is overwhelming for Hillary Clinton right now, but she won in Pennsylvania to end of April in 2008, then she won Indiana. I think it was the narrowest contest. It was 50 point to 49 point. But she won Indiana, which allowed her to say, I'm staying in this race. And to your point, Jeff, a lot of her supporters to say, there's still a chance. There's still a tiny chance. And they came together. And Hillary Clinton, that's why she was secretary of state. They came together eventually, but they didn't come together in the first week of May. So, she wants Indiana, Tuesday, as exclamation point. And just so just to show there's buyer's remorse in the Democratic Party.

But then, how did she do this? She is not known, forgive me, she is not known as, you know, as acknowledging your great Senator or what can I do to help your supporters, what can I do for you?

MURRAY: Right, that's the difficult part. It's hard to see how they come together. And even if they do come together, and like you were saying, even if Bernie Sanders does come around Hillary Clinton, how do you win these people who just aren't interested? And I don't know what Hillary Clinton can do to win them over? I mean, I think there's discussion about the platform is interesting because I think even if Bernie Sanders dropped out today, that you would need to include enough in the platform to make people feel excited, unlike Hillary Clinton is pushing on liberal agenda. But then, it's a really hard pivot from that into the general election.

ZELENY: And lot of California still hangs after. In 2008, California was a Super Tuesday State. There's still California and New Jersey, Oregon. So Bernie Sanders is going to win more states

The Clinton campaign knows that. That's why they are trying to keep this sort of sense alive, that she, you know, has the top spot.

RESTON: You see a lot of Sanders bumper stickers in California, which is shocking me.

KING: Listen to what she -- a little more on what she tells Jake here about this. Because she clearly, again, she lived this. She remembers what this is like but she -- at the very end here, listen to her, she seems to be enjoying being on the other side this time.


CLINTON: Senator Sanders has been a passionate advocate for positions that he cares deeply about. I think that's been helpful to the Democratic primary process. He's brought millions of people into the process, which I think is also very the good for the Democratic Party, but there comes a time when you have to look at the reality and ...


KING: So, that was perfect outreach to the Sanders campaign where she says, it's very good for the Democrat Party, period, stop. But she has to go on and say, but there's comes a time when you have to look at the reality which is kind of the poke.

ZELENY: She is ready to get this underway. He's been sort of getting under her skin. She is happy now that she has won five of the last six contests. We'll see if they have to go back to sort of defining him, if they lose in Indiana this week, and its close. To Sanders, probably they can possibly win it.

[08:35:00] Oregon is a Sanders State, California jump ball. So, this is not -- it's over mathematically speaking, but you're absolutely right, the buyer's remorse thing worries them.

RAJU: And lot of the -- a lot of the questions about unity has to do with Bernie Sanders himself. What does he do? What his decisions are? I talked to one of his supporters, a lone Senate Democratic supporter, Jeff Merkley, earlier this week, who said that if Bernie Sanders is still trailing in June, he should drop out at that point, unite the party, work to be a peacemaker, heading into the convention in July. That's something that Bernie Sanders ...

RESTON: It's hard to imagine that, you know, I mean he's matching tie, the periwinkle, in unity in New Hampshire, that event that she's planning in her head.

KING: If she handles this right though and she lets Bernie Sanders come out of this with his own movement, not only does she help herself in the fall, but maybe she helps herself, you know, let Bernie Sanders keep that win. As I say, don't give Elizabeth (ph) won her car back just yet, once she have one play out.

Ahead, we know a Clinton/Trump race would be nasty, but would it really change the presidential map?


[08:40:02] KING: Donald Trump says, just about every event now, Republicans should make him the nominee because he can change this map. This is the Obama-Romney map of 2012. President Obama won with 332 electoral votes. The Republicans had only 206. It takes 270 to get elected. Donald Trump says I can win Pennsylvania. He says I can win Michigan. He says I can win Ohio.

Now, Democrats say, come on, we'll contest you in those states. But even if Trump did that, if he was the nominee, took all three of those, look, that's not enough. That would get him to 260.

So, how do we get Donald Trump to the finish line? Well, Virginia would do it. That makes 273 to 265. There are some places out here, New Mexico, Nevada, used to be swing states. The Democrats say, no more, especially if Trump is the nominee because of his immigration rhetoric. They also think that Latinos in Colorado, swing voters now will keep that one blue.

But can Trump do this? Can Trump do this? Well, he says it's possible. The Clinton campaign says no. But this fight, even though neither one is officially the nominee yet, already underway. We know they'll fight about immigration. We'll know they'll fight about personal character. We also know, because they're already doing it, they'll fight about what Trump calls the "Woman Card."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, I think the only card she has is the "women's card". She's got nothing else going. And frankly, if Hillary Clinton were a man, I don't think she'd get five percent of the vote. The only thing she's got going is the women's card. And the beautiful thing is that women don't like her, OK?

CLINTON: Now, the other day, Mr. Trump accused me of playing the, "woman card."

Well, if fighting for women's health care and paid family leave and equal pay is playing the woman's card, then deal me in.


KING: She doesn't seem to be afraid of that debate about the women. And if you look at close presidential elections in recent history, they tend to be decided in the suburbs. Suburban women have a lot of sway in that. Now, there are others you should play here, as to the point can Obama -- I mean, can Trump change the map with white industrial voters?

But his point that women don't like her, you may find some poll and it shows some doubt, but what about his? USA Today/Suffolk Poll recently, Donald Trump, among female voters, 66 percent unfavorable, 66 percent unfavorable. I don't think you can win a presidential election if you have a 66 percent unfavorable. So, Trump would have to fix that and fix it fast.

MURRAY: He absolutely has to fix it. And the interesting thing is their campaign really has made no effort to even begin to try to do that. I think we're starting to see Hillary Clinton say, OK, our primary is continuing. I have to deal with Bernie Sanders, but I'm also going to pivot. I'm going to start dealing with Donald Trump. I'm going to start defining him. We're seeing Trump try to do that a little bit with Clinton, but we're not seeing him even begin to try deal with this big albatross, which is how women perceive him. And that's going to take coordinated messaging. That's going to take a little bit more discipline than we've seen from him the stump. And instead, you know, he says thing like Hillary Clinton is only winning because she is a woman. And then when, you know, asked about it again, he just repeats it and doubles down. And I don't know how effect ...

RAJU: He's going to have to find a more effective line of attack. Because in some ways, he is right because Hillary Clinton is not universally loved by women voters, about 50/50 in most polls, of course, that's much better than Donald Trump. But they have to figure out probably a new line of attack, maybe to push certain policies that could appeal to women voters in suburban swing districts, and that's something that Sara said. I mean, that he is doing that all right ....

RESTON: But I mean, Hillary Clinton just loves playing on that field too. I mean, she loves being in that defensive crouch and talking about that aspect of her career and her accomplishments in that area. I mean, I think that is where it's going to be so fascinating to see whether Donald Trump has another card to play here. Because to Sara's point, I mean, I haven't seen him do really anything to try to reach out and change those numbers, the fact that he is not far underwater and that's going to be a fascinating to the general electron.

KING: Yes. So, the question everybody raised is how does he build himself up? But he is left no doubt that he is willing to try to tear her down. And not just on policy, in his foreign policy speech, he did say that she was part of an Obama foreign policy he said he thought was reckless. He mentions Benghazi all the time. He mentions Libya all the time.

But he also likes to bring Bill Clinton into the equation. But not just Bill Clinton, he tweeted again just on Friday, "Crooked Hillary, perhaps the most dishonest person to have ever run for the presidency, is one of the all time great enablers." That's a criticism that she somehow stood by while her husband Bill was doing things that maybe American people don't support and don't like.

And so, Hillary Clinton when asked about this by Jake Tapper, she says something here that -- when you listen to this, not only is she firing back at Donald Trump, but seems like a little paging Dr. Freud.


CLINTON: I have a lot of experience dealing with men who sometimes get off the reservation and the way they behave and how they speak. I'm not going to deal with their temper tantrums or their bullying or their efforts to try to provoke me. He can say whatever he wants to say about me. I could really care less. I've laid it all out there, and he can't or he won't, I can't tell which. So, we're going to talk about what we want to do for the country, and he can continue on his insult fest, but that's the choice he's making.


KING: We could spend a long time with that.


KING: Please, the floor is yours.

[08:45:00] ZELENY: In 2008, you know, she came to say that I found my voice. She has her voice on this. She knows exactly what to say in this. I think that's how she keeps suburban women and others in mind.

It's sort of saying, you know, you may not have been happy with my choice back in the '90s to stay with him. Because there are still women voters out there who say, you know, they're unhappy with that. She, you know, but she is, I think, very clear on this. That the challenge for Trump is if you talk to Republicans, they'll say, if you would only say, you know, stick to the substance of Hillary Clinton, the Benghazi, if you want a third Obama term, other things. So if he can stay disciplined, I think, he can maybe get some of those women voters back. But that answer was fascinating, obviously, but that she knows what she's saying. MURRAY: When he first started, this is a couple of months ago when they first had this back and forth about Hillary Clinton being an enabler, and her husband and that kind of thing. I talked to a lot of Republican voters at the time. These are people who were Trump's supporters, men and women, who said, I don't really think that this is the approach. I think maybe we leave, you know, Bill Clinton's indiscretions out of this. Why are we talking about, you know, blaming Hillary Clinton for this? This is obviously her husband. This was in the '90s. Let's move on. Let's talk about Benghazi. Clearly, he is not listening to that. That's right.

RESTON: Republicans were already operating from such deficit, you know, among single women. And, you know, and that those numbers were looking worst among married women. I mean, that he's got a lot of work to do there and that's very tricky ground for him to be talking (ph).

RAJU: We're talking early in the show about how Republican establishment types are embracing Trump. But one thing they scares them is the things that he may say. He does not stick to the script.

MURRAY: Puts little detail.


RAJU: It's those little details and then, I mean, folks don't take it, will have to have to answer for what, they're stander bearers.

KING: One first answer for the challenge just in recent days is that guy that that Donald Trump talks about a lot, Bill Clinton.


BILL CLINTON, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: Look, I know the Republicans have been really mean to her, and it's been fairly effective. But you ought to see, and you will get a chance to see, that this is what they do. They decide who they don't want to run against, and then they dump on them like crazy.


KING: He's trying to frame the fall debate.

ZELENY: He is trying to frame the fall debate. But, I mean, I think if Donald Trump said nothing else more than, do you want Hillary Clinton to be the next president? You know, I'm the guy to keep her out of the White House. I think like that is sort of all he should say. But we know he's going to say so, so, so much more than that, so.

RESTON: There's so many ...

ZELENY: And Clinton campaign spent this week in Chappaqua, a couple of days, sort of down one central topic. How it just sort of take on and deal with Donald Trump? They have all this tape to review of the campaign so far and it's going be fascinating. RESTON: And hearing the footage from before that time.

KING: Right. Yeah. It is a fascinating time. Remember, Indiana next though even as we start to think ahead a little bit.

Up next, our reporters share from the notebook, including a close look at why the Trump campaign thinks not all GOP convention delegates are created equal?

First, the results from our "Inside Politics," quiz question. We asked who should Donald Trump pick as his running mate if he is the Republican nominee?

You picked from those candidates there, Kasich, Rubio, Ernst, Haley. You picked someone else, six in 10 of you wants somebody else. All right, see you in a bit.


[08:51:57] Let's head around the INSIDE POLITICS table and ask our great reporters to help get you out ahead of the political news just around the corner. Maeve Reston?

RESTON: So, everyone's focused right now on Indiana. But we are looking ahead to my home state of California. And once again the question is, is the fact that Ted Cruz has been organizing there a year ahead of time, really going to put Trump at a disadvantage. They've got to go into all of these blue districts. It's winner takes all by congressional districts. And we're talking about finding Republican delegates Maxine Waters district in order to send a loyal slate to the convention. So, that's going to be fascinating to watch. Can Donald Trump get his delegate game together in California?

KING: Does the California primary matters? Almost never goes, does this time, Jeff?

RESTON: Yes, it does.

ZELENY: The primary colors, and in the Clinton campaign's case, that's green. They are still trying to raise primary dollars, but they are about turning the corner to the general election here. They're about to start raising money for the general, not quite yet because they still want to bring out a few more of those primary dollars. She'll be campaigning and raising money later this week in California, in Texas. Some donors are clamoring to start to raising money for the general, but the Clinton campaigns wants to raise a few more primary dollars.

This is significant here because in 2008 she raised both at once, primary and general, the money at the beginning. This year, they only raised primary dollars. So, it has actually forced fundraisers to look farther down to find new donors. They've done that. They're about to turn the corner, but not quite yet. They need just a little bit more of that green.

KING: A little more cash to spend before the convention. Manu? MANU: John, the other big primary in Indiana on Tuesday is the Senate Republican Primary, that's between Marlin Stutzman, the congressman, and Todd Young, the other congressman. Stutzman, of course, is a former -- is a member of the Conservative House Freedom Caucus. He voted against John Boehner.

And who doesn't want him to become a Senator? Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority of leader, who his forces are spending a ton of money to stop Stutzman in the primary. They've unleashed a barrage of attacks. The Super PAC had. There have been negative stories, awful research stories that have hit Marlin Stutzman. And I'm told by McConnell, allies are very confident that Stutzman is going to lose and that Todd Young will be the nominee after Tuesday. And what's interesting about this primary fight, it's less about electability and it's much more about personality.

KING: Mitch McConnell continuing to try to crush the tea party, carrying that one over. Sara?

MURRAY: Well, back on the presidential field. We've all been following the fight for delegates, but we have to remember that not all delegates are created equally. So, the Trump campaign believes they have lots of different ways to get 1237 for Cleveland. But what they are really focused on are these bound delegates. We made a big deal out of Pennsylvania, about all of these moving of the unbound delegates. And yes, that's important. But what's more important is bound, because that is how the RNC tracks who the nominee is. The Trump campaign wants 1237 bound delegates as soon as possible. Because they want to be able to exert as much control as possible over the convention out of touch.

KING: Well, Indiana and then California, New Jersey, and West Virginia, we have to count still. Sara, thank you.

Let me close with an observation or two from a quick visit to Mexico City this past week.

I was there for an event Thursday night, had conversations with a mix of young professionals and older Mexican business leaders and diplomats. Most striking, how closely, extraordinary closely, they are following our presidential election.

[08:55:10] Donald Trump, of course, is the principle reason why. To a person, those I spoke with were horrified at his tone on immigration, and every conversation included a question about whether Trump is a really viable candidate to win the presidency. Yes, he is.

But it isn't just Trump and his immigration views that are making our neighbors to the south more than a little nervous. Trade between the United States and Mexico has more than tripled since the NAFTA agreement was implemented in the Bill Clinton presidency. And a much more negative tone about NAFTA in future trade deals.

Not only from Trump but also Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders is raising serious worries about the future of a business relationship, our neighbors believe, is not only good for both the US and Mexican economies, but they say the major reason the pace of illegal immigration by Mexicans has slowed considerably. Trust me, the world is watching.

That's it for "Inside Politics." Again, thanks for sharing your Sunday morning. We'll see you soon, including for our Special Indiana Primary Coverage Tuesday night.

Up next, "STATE OF THE UNION" with Jake Tapper.