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Pence, Kaine Face Off in V.P. Debate Tonight; Hurricane Matthew Pounds Haiti, Heads to U.S. East Coast; White House Response to Philippines' Duterte. Aired 1:30-2p ET

Aired October 4, 2016 - 13:30   ET


[13:30:00] SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR, (D), MINNESOTA: That is correct, but he has been willing to sort of say we can let NATO go at a time Russia has been more aggressive than we've seen in decade.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: He wants NATO to be strong. But that's another story.

KLOBUCHAR: OK, all right

BLITZER: Let's talk about some that fully could come up in tonight's debate, out clearly is out there, and Donald Trump has threatened to really go after Hillary Clinton for her response to the allegations of her husband's infidelities over the years.

This was a sound bite that the Republicans, the Trump campaign, they're using right now when she reacted to Gennifer Flowers back in 1992, accusing Bill Clinton of having a sexual affair with her. Listen to this.


HILLARY CLINTON, (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If somebody's willing to pay you $130,000 or $170,000 to say something and you get your 15 minutes of fame and get your picture on the front page of every newspaper and you're some failed cabaret singer --


BLITZER: All right, now, Bill Clinton later acknowledged he did have an affair with Gennifer Flowers. How's she going to respond to that? Let's say Trump or Pence does that, goes after not necessarily Bill Clinton, but her for the way she reacted to these women?

KLOBUCHAR: The first thing we have to remember is Bill Clinton is not on the ballot. That's been a lot of our discussion today. Hillary Clinton is on the ballot. I don't think when you have Donald Trump as the lead candidate, who has three marriages in his past, whereas the Clintons have been married, what, 40-some years, including Tim Kaine married for a long period of time as well, and his two spokespeople on this, Newt Gingrich and Rudy Giuliani, between Trump, Gingrich and Giuliani, they have nine marriages between them. I don't really think they're the ones that should be throwing stones.

BLITZER: But if they do, what is the Clinton campaign going to do? KLOBUCHAR: The answer is the fact that if you look at Hillary

Clinton's record. Maybe from time to time I think anyone that was in that situation, difficulties in their marriage, may say things they might regret, but that does not define her career. No one looked at her, you don't see series of year after year attacking these women. In fact, she stood up for woman. She stood up for women's rights, made that historic speech, women rights are human rights, human rights are women's rights, and every step of the way she has stood up for women and families, including the policies that she's come forward with that I know Tim Kaine will talk about tonight.

BLITZER: The vice president, the current vice president, Joe Biden, he gave an interview with CNN's Chris Cuomo, and here's how he described the final home stretch of this race.


JOE BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Our job here is to get a focus on what really matters, what's going to change the circumstance for a middle-class person? I know Hillary feels that. But every time she expresses emotions, she gets clobbered, she gets clobbered.


BLITZER: Do you agree with him?

KLOBUCHAR: I think what I really agree with is this idea that this last month of the campaign is starting tonight and Hillary's doing everything she can to do this. We need to talk about things that things that matter to people, students who can't afford their loans, people who can't afford to buy a house. Instead, we hear from Trump, time and time again, yesterday, he was going after veterans with traumatic stress disorder, going after Miss Universe. He takes a lot of oxygen out of the room. But there are these moments in debates, including in the last debate where, when he made the admission, last debate, it's smart to maybe not pay my taxes, and we see his tax return, and that's borne out. Connecting those, his actions, with building up this huge debt, with his policies, which is to have $ trillion in debt, that's what the non-partisan CBO assessed, or his policies to help the people at the top the most. That actually is in -- it is connected to his business career and what he's done to people that have worked for him. And I want to see those cases be made as well as the case about Hillary Clinton's plan for the economy.

BLITZER: Senator Klobuchar, thanks for coming in.

KLOBUCHAR: It'll be fun tonight. Thanks, Wolf.

BLITZER: You'll be watching and I know you'll be in that spin room afterwards as well. Appreciate it very much.

KLOBUCHAR: Thank you.

BLITZER: Up next, what strengths do Tim Kaine and Mike Pence bring to their running mates? We'll give you a breakdown. Our panelists are standing by. We're live here at Longwood University.


[13:33:01] BLITZER: We're back here, live, at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia, just a few hours away from the vice presidential candidates debate and Mike Pence and Tim Kaine getting ready for their first and only debate.

With us, our panel, CNN chief political correspondent, Dana Bash; CNN Politics executive editor, Mark Preston; and Philip Rucker, national political reporter for "The Washington Post."

Dana, let's talk about some of the moments you thought highlighted this campaign so far involving Tim Kaine and Mike Pence.

I want to start with what Tim Kaine said, and you pointed out what, what he said at the Human Rights Campaign Dinner last month. Listen to this.


SEN. TIM KAINE, (D), VIRGINIA & VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Mike Pence is a guy who believes marriage equality will cause a, quote, "social collapse." He insulted brave LGBT soldiers protecting our freedom overseas. And of course, he ran a one-man crusade to allow Indiana businesses acting in the public commercial sphere to discriminate against LGBTQ Americans. Yet, Donald Trump saw this and decided this is the person that I want helping me govern this country.


BLITZER: So is this an effective attack line that's going to be used to try to help Hillary Clinton?

DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Likely. It depends on where the conversation goes and where the debate goes. But this is also one of the few issues where Donald Trump is perhaps more on the liberal side, or if you're more moderate, I think the way they would view it, a more palatable side of the two of them. Because Mike Pence has been obviously not only quite conservative on LGBT issues but had the controversial law in Indiana that you can't even imagine Donald Trump doing. So that, I think, is the one issue where if Tim Kaine wants to go at Mike Pence, the person, as opposed to Mike Pence, the guy running with Donald Trump, he has an opening there.

BLITZER: You pointed out, Mark, the first joint interview that Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine did after she selected him. This was on "60 Minutes." I'll play the clip.


[13:40:14] KAINE: I'm grateful to you, Hillary, for the trust that you've placed in me, and we're going to be -- (SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE). In this great -- (SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE).



BLITZER: Correction, that was their first joint rally, not the first joint interview they did. But you thought that was significant?

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: I thought it was significant because if you remember that moment in time, right before the Democratic convention, Tim Kaine announced the night before. It was leaked the night before. It really solidified why Hillary Clinton chose Tim Kaine. Tim Kaine was able to give a little life to Hillary Clinton we hadn't seen. If you noticed during the rally we saw in the clip, Hillary Clinton is sitting in the back, smiling, seemed happy, seemed energized, at a time during the campaign, coming out of the Republican convention, she didn't have that bit of energy. In addition, we also saw Tim Kaine using his language skills, speaking in Spanish to an audience that Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine need. They need the Hispanic vote to get out and they need it in big numbers to win.

BLITZER: Phil, what struck you about that?

PHILIP RUCKER, NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST: It was interesting because Tim Kaine also he embodied the Stronger Together theme that Hillary Clinton has. He has a background here in Virginia fighting for civil rights as a civil rights lawyer, speaks Spanish, helped round out the image, but also softened some of Hillary Clinton's edges. He brings her an authenticity she sometimes struggles with on the trail and that helped to balance out the ticket.

BLITZER: Let's talk about Mike Pence.

Dana, you interviewed Pence not long ago. I'll play an exchange you had with him about how Mike Pence is preparing for tonight's debate.


MIKE PENCE, (R), INDIANA GOVERNOR & VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We're preparing in a very traditional way. My running mate is a masterful debater.

I want to make sure that I'm ready to tell Donald Trump's story to the nation. I want to be able to reflect on his ideas to make American great again and, again, and to really have a stronger, a stronger and more prosperous America at home and abroad.


BLITZER: So what's your sense of the way he's preparing the messaging tonight?

BASH: Well, you just heard, I want to tell Donald Trump's story. That's what really struck me about his answer when my question was just generally how are you preparing for the debate. Not only is his preparation process incredibly different from Donald Trump's, it is more traditional. He has been working with a stand-in, somebody playing the role, Scott Walker, governor of Wisconsin, playing the role of Tim Kaine, doing mock debates about once a week. He's been really diving into the policy papers that he's --


BLITZER: He's doing what Donald Trump didn't?

BASH: Right, but also because of the fact that he does differ with Donald Trump on a lot of issues, the fact that his answer was, I want to tell Donald Trump's story is quite telling about his approach to tonight.

BLITZER: Here's that clip I referenced from "60 Minutes" that -- this is a separate "60 Minutes" interview. This is Mike Pence talking about Donald Trump a bit. Listen to this.


PENCE: I promise you that when the circumstances arise where I have a difference on policy or on presentation, I have, I can tell you, in my heart, I know I would have no hesitation were I privileged be vice president to walk into the president's office, close the door and share my heart. And I also know this good man would listen and has -- and has the leadership qualities to draw from the people around him.


BLITZER: So what impressed you about that?

PRESTON: Well, the fact is, he's loyal to Donald Trump specifically when Donald Trump says very outrageous, crass things and Mike Pence has a political future bond here, or at least he wants one. And the fact he's staying loyal to Donald Trump -- and that was right after he was announced as Republican presidential nominee and he's continued along that track. And tonight, expecting to do the same because I can't imagine that this debate isn't going to be about Donald Trump, the statements he's made and the issues that divide him, whether it is on trade or banning Muslims or global warming. They differ on a lot of different things, yet he's loyal to Donald Trump.

BLITZER: And he tries to clean up when Donald Trump make as mistake, for example, the Khan family, Gold Star family, at the Democratic convention, when Donald Trump criticized them. Listen to this exchange Mike Pence had with a woman at a town hall.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you have a son in the military.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How do you tolerate his disrespect?

PENCE: Well, I thank you for the question.

(SHOUTING) PENCE: It's all right. It's all right.

Captain Khan moved people out of the way, told them to stay back, and he walked towards the danger. I want to say again, Captain Khan is an American hero.



BLITZER: He didn't have any problem saying that.

RUCKER: No, he didn't. And you know what? Mike Pence has been doing that throughout this campaign, explaining Donald Trump and defending him, and he has a pretty warm kind of affable way to do that. He sometimes laughs it off. He says, look, Donald Trump is a family man. It might not always come through in his rhetoric, believe me, I know him, I know his family. He says that in private to the Republicans establishment, which remains skittish about Donald Trump as their nominee, and Pence is like his ambassador evangelizing the ticket the way nobody on the else is doing.

[13:45:20] BASH: So true.

BLITZER: I suspect tonight's debate, Dana, will be policy oriented. Both of these men have a lot of experience, federal government, state government. They know these issues well. I suspect it will be on a relatively high level.

BASH: Just talking to the campaigns, they want it to be about policy. You hear that a lot from, really to a person, from campaigns and candidates going into debates since the beginning of time, but they actually really mean it. I was talking to one source familiar with it, the prep that Mike Pence is doing, saying that, you know, we know that the -- debates at the t| of the ticket are going to be policy oriented but also very much about the characters and personalities. We hope in this particular debate we can really chew on some of the really important policy issues where they really are quite different in terms of their approach, not just the V.P. candidates but, more importantly, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

BLITZER: I assume Tim Kaine will use a lot of opportunities to attack Donald Trump, and Mike Pence will use a lot of opportunities to attack Hillary Clinton, in addition to some high-level policy debate they will have.

Guys, stay with us.

Coming up, much more from here at the site of the vice presidential debate.

Plus, a powerful and potentially destructive hurricane is churning through the Caribbean right now and it could be headed towards the U.S. mainland. Just ahead, we're going to have the latest track, the timeline for the storm.

Plus, we're going to tell you what the president of the Philippines said about President Obama and how the White House has just reacted.


[13:50:53] BLITZER: We're on the campus of Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia. It's a beautiful campus. This is the site of the vice presidential debate coming up later tonight.

But there are other important stories we're also following, including another big story involving a hurricane, Hurricane Matthew in this particular case. This is still a category 4 storm and it's pounding Haiti right now. At least two people have been killed. The death toll is expected to rise.

Here in the United States, Florida Governor Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency and he's warning residents.

Our Meteorologist Jennifer Gray is at the CNN Weather Center following this hurricane.

Do we know where the storm is headed next -- Jennifer?

JENNIFER GRAY, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Well, we do, Wolf, next up is Cuba. We are expecting a second landfall later today on the east of Cuba and then it will be southern Bahamas, into the northern Bahamas. Right now, still a very powerful category four storm. We should get our next update within moments before 2:00. But right now latest advisory, 145 mile per hour winds, gusts of 175, moving to the north at 10 miles per hour. Of course, like we said, this is a very dangerous category four storm with 175 mile per hour winds. Now, the hurricane-force winds extent about 60 miles from the center. Tropical storm force winds extend about 185 miles from the center and so the impacts can be far-reaching. It is located about 90 miles south of the eastern tip of Cuba.

On this latest track, it will continue to the north. We noticed it took this dangerous shift to the West yesterday afternoon and the forecast track is still holding to that.

I can give you a closer look at this track, Wolf, this is a dangerous situation because farther west, this storm actually gets, that's going to mean the difference in how much of an impact will be felt along the southeast coast. That's why Florida and all the Carolinas along the east coast need to be on the lookout.

BLITZER: I'm sure they are. We'll be watching this very, very closely.

Jennifer, thank you very much.

There's another story we're following right now. The president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, is launching a brand new tirade against President Obama. The volatile leader is upset about the criticism of his deadly anti-drug campaign. Duterte said today he may break up with the United States.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) RODRIGO DUTERTE, PHILIPPINES PRESIDENT: Instead of helping us, (INAUDIBLE - so you can go to hell. Mr. Obama, you can go to hell.

If this is what happens now I will be reconfiguring my foreign policy. Eventually, I might in my time have a breakup with America. I would rather go to Russia and to China. At least, even if we do not agree with their ideology, they have respect for the people.


BLITZER: I want to bring CNN's Athena Jones. She's at the White House for us.

Athena, how is the White House reacting to this latest insult from the Philippines president? Wolf.

ATHENA JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, White House press secretary, Josh Earnest, was asked about this very early in the briefing. He said these latest remarks by President Duterte are at odds with the warm relationship that exists between the U.S. and the Filipino people. He talked about a 70-year history of working together. People, cooperation, sharing security concerns, maritime and disaster -- working together on maritime security and disaster response and he said that, look, the White House is not going to shy away from bringing up concerns it has about these extrajudicial killings during this drug crackdown that the Philippine president has undertaken. Thousands of drug dealers and drug users have been killed in this crackdown. But, you know, this is not the first time, we know, that President Duterte has used some colorful language to refer not only to the president but to others, members of the U.S. administration. So the White House is trying to play this down saying the relationship remains solid -- Wolf?

[13:55:20] BLITZER: Very strong words from the Philippines president.

All right, thanks very much, Athena.

That's it for me. I'll be back 5:00 p.m. eastern in "The Situation Room," all night for our special coverage of the vice presidential debate.

In the meantime, the news continues right after a quick break.