Return to Transcripts main page
AT THIS HOUR WITH BERMAN AND MICHAELA
SNL's David Chappelle's Message to Trump; Trump's Tasks Prior to Inauguration; Trump Planned to Endorse Rival If Didn't Win. Aired 11:30-12p ET
Aired November 14, 2016 - 11:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:33:56] KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: In its first episode since the country elected its next commander-in-chief, "Saturday Night Live" took on a more serious tone. Here's Dave Chappelle's message to President-elect Donald Trump. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CHAPPELLE, COMEDIAN: You know, before I go, I do want to say one thing and this is not a joke, but I think it's important that I say this, because they're marching up the street right now as I speak.
A few weeks ago, I went to the White House for a party. It was the first time I had been there in many years, and it was very exciting. And BET had sponsored the party so everyone there was black.
And it was beautiful. I walked through the gates. I'm from Washington so I saw the bus stop, or the corner where the bus stop used to be, where I used to catch the bus to school and dream about nights like tonight. It was really, really beautiful night.
At the end of the night, everyone went into the West Wing of the White House and there was a huge party. And everybody in there was black except for Bradley Cooper, for some reason.
[11:35:05] And on the walls, were pictures of all the presidents of the past. Now, I'm not sure if this is true, but to my knowledge, the first black person that was officially invited to the White House was Frederick Douglas. They stopped him at the gate. Abraham Lincoln had to walk out himself and escort Frederick Douglas into the White House.
It didn't happen again as far as I know until Roosevelt was president. When Roosevelt was president, he had a black guy over and got so much flak from the media that he literally said I will never have a nigger in this house again.
I thought about that and I looked at that room and I saw all those black faces, and Bradley. And I saw --
And I saw how happy everybody was. These people who had been historically disenfranchised. And it made me feel hopeful and it made me feel proud to be an American and it made me very happy about the prospects of our country.
So, in that spirit, I'm wishing Donald Trump luck. And I'm going to give him a chance. And we the historically disenfranchised, demand that he give us one, too.
Thank you very much.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: That was Dave Chappelle there.
Let's bring in a couple folks right now to talk about this and more. Carl Higbie, is here, a former Navy SEAL, very supportive of Donald Trump; and Symone Sanders, CNN political commentator, supported Hillary Clinton, and was national press secretary for the Bernie Sanders campaign.
Great to see you both.
Another interesting moment dovetailing off of what you saw Dave Chappelle talking about is, during the "60 minutes" interview, Donald Trump was asked about racist incidents that have popped up since his election and here's his message. I want you to listen to this, then we will react.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LESLEY STAHL, CO-HOST, 60 MINUTES: Do you want to say anything to those people?
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES: I would say don't do it. That's terrible. Because I'm going to bring this country together.
STAHL: They are harassing Latinos, Muslims --
TRUMP: I am so saddened to hear that. And I say stop it, if it helps. I will say this, and I will say it right to the camera, stop it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: Symone, your take on that? A very clear message from Donald Trump to his supporters.
SYMONE SANDERS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: You know, I need Donald Trump to put some action behind those words. I remember during the primary where our campaign, the Bernie Sanders campaign, talked about how Hillary Clinton talked to Wall Street and told them to stop it, cut it out, and that was not enough. It is not enough for Donald Trump to look at the camera on "60 minutes" and tell them stop it. He has a platform of twitter he uses to attack journalists and everybody else. How about he uses it to talk directly to his supporters?
I would also like to note, Kate, that earlier in that "60 Minutes" interview he was also asked about hate crimes and the people protesting, and he suggested that these folks were professional protesters, and said, I don't know if these hate crimes are happening. Then his son also jumped in and said I'm not sure if they're happening.
The audacity of privileged white people to sit on national television and question if hate crimes are happening, to just flippantly say stop it, it's not OK, and not put any action behind those words, it's appalling to me. It's actually appalling.
BOLDUAN: Carl, I want, we had a technical glitch for a second. I hope you heard most of this. I want to get your reaction to this.
CARL HIGBIE, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, I heard about the last 30 seconds of it. I will say, look, Donald Trump but I would say where was Obama when people were smashing neighborhoods after all the riots? He didn't necessarily take a firm stance on getting people to stop.
I think what happens now is, look, people should not riot and cause violence on either side of the aisle regarding the issue. I think it's stupid for people to come out and say racist things and whatever power for Trump. But they shouldn't do it on either side. I think there should be a real serious ratcheting down of the law, and say stop doing violence upon other people and neighborhoods.
SANDERS: Hate crimes -- I'm sorry, Kate. Hate crimes and protesting are not the same things. We cannot normalize this.
Carl, a hate crime is a crime that is committed against somebody because of their religion, because of what they look like, because of their sexual orientation. That's not the same thing as protesting.
BOLDUAN: You're not -- I don't think Carl is disputing that.
SANDERS: Well, he should make it very clear because what I heard is both, people on both sides should cut it all out. A hate crime is not the same thing as protesting. We have to be very deliberate about that.
BOLDUAN: What do you say to the people who dragged a poor white guy out of a car and beat him --
SANDERS: Oh, my goodness. Poor white people. Please. Stop. Stop it, Carl. What I say to people that protest is first of all, apparently, there's -- (CROSSTALK)
HIGBIE: That's not protesting. Dragging somebody out of their car and beating them -
SANDERS: Pardon me. There's never been a successful form of protest.
What I'm saying is I'm calling for people to be peaceful. I think protesting is a right. It is what this country was founded on. We got this country via protest but it's never OK to use violence. We can't keep calling for people to be peaceful --
HIBEE: You and I agree on that.
[11:10:06] SANDERS: We can't call for people to be peaceful when the rhetoric that has been used is not peaceful, when people don't feel peaceful in their homes. We have to reckon with that.
BOLDUAN: I want to finish with one quick question. You have been a long-time Donald Trump supporter. I had an interesting conversation with Randy Evans this hour. Did you see Donald Trump softening or evolving on issues? Please give me a brief answer.
HIGBIE: No. I will go specifically into Obamacare. You can't just dump a million people off health insurance. You have to do this humanely. Ironically, Obamacare was designed to be not unimplemented. You have to do it in a smart, intelligent way. You don't want to immediately kick 13 million people off their health insurance plans that lost it in the first place because of Obamacare. Now they would have nothing to go to. We have to do it humanely, intelligently. And it's going to be a trickle. He's not softening. He's finding out the best way for the American public.
SANDERS: That's an about-face of what he said on the campaign trail.
HIGBIE: Not really.
BOLDUAN: Governing is different from campaigning. We are all looking at it, depends what lens you're look at it through.
Great to see you both. Thank you very much for coming on.
HIGBIE: Thank you.
SANDERS: Thank you.
BOLDUAN: Appreciate it, guys.
All right. So, he's now president-elect. Donald Trump didn't think he would make it past October of last year. He was set to endorse one of his rivals. Stunning new details coming out.
We'll be right back.
[11:45:45] BOLDUAN: Donald Trump is the president-elect. The inauguration is just 67 days away. A lot to be done within that time.
Joining me to discuss, former Minnesota governor and former Republican presidential candidate, Tim Pawlenty.
Governor, great to see you.
TIM PAWLENTY, FORMER MINNESOTA GOVERNOR & FORMER PRSIDENTIAL CDANDIDASTE: Good to be with you.
BOLDUAN: So you supported Donald Trump. You unendorsed him. You took back your support of Donald Trump after that "Access Hollywood" tape came out. In doing so, you called him unsound, uninformed, unhinged and unfit to be president. What do you say today?
PAWLENTY: I say he's our president-elect and all of us have an interest in helping him be successful. So, I had those concerns with him. I still do. But I'm hoping that he will be able to rise to the occasion and fill the office in an appropriate and effective way.
BOLDUAN: Giving him a chance. Let's play word association. Reince Priebus as chief of staff. You say?
PAWLENTY: Terrific. Reince is salt of the earth person. He's got his feet on the ground, his head and his heart are connected. He comes from a blue collar background in parts of Wisconsin, he made his own way. This is somebody who is sturdy, wise and is going to do a great job as chief of staff.
BOLDUAN: I say Steve Bannon as chief strategist, you say?
PAWLENTY: I don't know him. But some of the allegations that have come out since he got appointed are certainly going to concern people. But at the end of the day this is going to be an administration that rises or falls on the president's performance and his effectiveness with policy and national security, not what a staff person's background might be.
BOLDUAN: You want to give Donald Trump a chance. That's what you just said. There is evidence that he is softening on issues, campaign promises, showing flexibility on some of the things he said on the campaign trail, on the wall, on Obamacare, on a few different issues that all came out really in that "60 minutes" interview. If Donald Trump is softening on changing on his campaign promises, does that make you feel better or worse about Donald Trump in the White House?
PAWLENTY: We will see. In fairness to him, at least as Obamacare, he did say during the campaign that he was going to keep parts of it. So, that's pretty clear. So, the fact he doesn't wholesale get rid of all of it is not a dramatic change from what he said during the campaign. The wall part could be more concerning because that was something that was very definitive for him a for his supporters but I think the fact that he's going to learn more about policy, learn more about the details of policy, is going to require some adjustments and that's just the nature of getting more informed, more perhaps deep in terms of the types of details that will have to fill in some of the broad statements he made during the campaign.
BOLDUAN: You are the head of the Financial Services Roundtable, well known, very powerful. Many folks know you are an advocacy group for the banking industry, insurance, finance companies we all know very well. Are your members excited about President Trump?
PAWLENTY: Well, it's a new day in the sense that he has signaled he wants to get rid of or dramatically overhaul Dodd-Frank, the seminal piece of legislation that followed the crash of '08. It's not clear what the details of all of that are. Certainly, our members are very interested in what does he mean by that and what kind of changes does he have in mind. You got to strike the right balance between making sure consumers are protected and the economy is protected through regulation but not going so far that you strangle or suffocate economic growth and investment. Hopefully, he will be able to strike the right balance.
BOLDUAN: More detail, that seems to be the resounding message from folks we are hearing.
PAWLENTY: Yeah, exactly.
BOLDUAN: Governor, great to see you. Thanks so much.
PAWLENTY: Thank you.
[11:50:12] BOLDUAN: Coming up, he overcame the odds. He won the White House. But not long ago, even Donald Trump himself seemed to not think that he could pull it off. Which Republican candidate was Donald Trump prepared to endorse? New details coming out.
BOLDUAN: The 2016 election was historic. "CNN Politics" captured and compiled every moment of it along the way. A first-ever book, entitled "Unprecedented: The Election that Changed Everything," takes a close look at the election. And one amazing reveal, how President- elect Donald Trump didn't think he would make it to the finish line.
CNN chief political correspondent, Dana Bash, here with much more on that.
How do we know? What did he think?
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: This is a book that has a lot of juicy details. The first has been reported by Susan Bair (ph), who has been working on this since the beginning of the campaign. And what she was told was that, in 2015, Donald Trump said to his old friend, Chris Christie, his competitor at the time for the Republican nomination, he didn't think he'd make it past October. And if that, in fact, happened, Trump would end up backing Chris Christie. Obviously, the roles ended up being very reversed. Very much so.
But it shows a couple of things. One is that Donald Trump for all of this bravado wasn't really sure it was really going to last. Never mind get the Republican nomination, never mind win the White House. But, also, you know, it shows kind of the flip side of what we saw with Chris Christie and the loyalty he had to Donald Trump. He got a lot of flak for being really one of the first in the mainstream Republican party if you will, to say he was going to endorse Donald Trump and stood with him and really helped him the way with debate prep, with advising and, you know, it was, he was at Trump tower a lot even as the sitting governor of New Jersey.
BOLDUAN: At the same time, just at the end of the week, we've seen his role described as diluted. He's longer head of transition. What does this all mean for the future for Chris Christie and the administration?
[11:55:16] BASH: It really seems to be up in the air. Some people think that he's probably not going to be in the administration and he's on the outs. And the fact that Jared Kushner, who is Donald Trump's son-in-law, who -- you know, again, this is so Shakespearean -- who Chris Christie - Chris Christie put his father in jail. And so, they have very tough relationship but were able to get along enough during the campaign. That doesn't help.
So, you know, we'll see how it plays out. But at this point, I think it's a big question mark, whether Chris Christie will actually join the administration.
Great to see you.
BASH: Thank you.
BOLDUAN: Thank you.
So, the book "Unprecedented: The Election that Changed Everything," is available on pre-order at CNN.com/book. You can also find in in stores on December 6th.
And this, just into CNN, sources tell us who Donald Trump is considering at this moment for another very important White House position, White House press secretary. Details on that, ahead.