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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL
Post-Debate Interview with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Presidential Candidate; Democratic Candidates Face off in Debate; Iowa Voters Share Views on Debate. Aired 12-2a ET
Aired August 1, 2019 - 00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: I don't understand why anybody goes to all the trouble of running for president of the United States just to talk about what we really can't do and shouldn't fight for.
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Yes.
WARREN: Well, that's fair and right. Look, before I ever got in the race for president, I knew exactly what I thought was wrong in this country and why I was running for president and what it is I would get out there and fight for and the kind of .fight that I would run.
For me, this was about a grassroots movement from the beginning, not sucking up to a bunch of corporate CEOs and bazillionaires. That is what I want to talk about every chance I get. We can't be the party of little changes from where it is right now.
This is a time in America where people feel it and they feel it bad. What's happening in this country is get it. They haven't had a raise, most of them, for a generation but the cost of housing is up, the cause of health care is up and childcare. People watch their kids try to get education and are just loaded down with tens of thousands of dollars in student loan debt.
COOPER: But you know, the argument that Representative Delaney and others are making, which is, just politically, you are going to tell -- it was hard enough for Democrats to get the Affordable Care Act passed.
You're going to be telling Democrats and the American people, more than 100 million of them, that their private insurance is going to be taken away?
WARREN: I so admired what President Obama did. It was so hard to get us from a place where we were on health care to getting coverage for tens of millions of Americans.
But notice how the world changed over time. I was in the Senate when the House voted to repeal health care coverage for tens of millions of Americans. And they gave each other high-fives. What kind of human beings high-five over taking away health care
coverage from tens of millions of people?
It came to the Senate of the United States and there were enough people across this country who had come off the sidelines, who had spoken up, who had come to Washington and camped out to congressional offices and Senate offices all around the country.
We picked up Republicans and we saved health care for tens of millions of Americans. The moment is shifting in America. This is a point in American history. And we see the crisis and we are not going to win this moment with small ideas and spinelessness.
The way we win this moment is with big structural change that touches people's lives.
COOPER: But to somebody out there who likes their health insurance that they have through their union or wherever it is, what do you say to them about what lies ahead?
About why they should give up their private insurance?
WARREN: You know, I wish we would stop using Republican talking points on what people are giving up. This is about transition and how people get their health care covered. And I say to them, go visit with Eddie Barton (ph), he's the guy I talked about onstage, 35 years old. He's got the cutest little boy, Carl (ph), and he has ALS and he is dying.
He has great health insurance and yet every month he has about $9,000 of medical bills that the insurance company just says we're not going to pay for it. His wife, Rachel, spends hours and hours and hours on the phone, begging the insurance company for coverage.
He goes online, like thousands of Americans who have health insurance, to beg their friends, their family and strangers, please chip in some money so I can pay for health care that my insurance company won't cover.
COOPER: It sounds like you're saying to the person out there who likes their health insurance, like you don't really -- you just don't understand that it's actually not that good --
COOPER: -- and when push comes to shove, it's not going to be there for you.
WARREN: It's about -- there's going to be a transition to something that's better. President Obama got us part way there and, god, it made a huge difference. People are alive today because we fought that fight.
And notice how many people who stood on the sidelines, even while he was the one who had to carry that all the way, who then got in the fight when they started talking about taking it away. COOPER: You can convince people that it's going to be better than the plan they currently have?
WARREN: Well, it is going to be better. And here's the deal. The bazillionaires, the big corporations, they're going to pay more. But hardworking middle class Americans, they are going to have less money out of pocket in this.
This is about how it is that right now in this government continues to protect the giant insurance companies, continues to protect the giant drug companies. This is the moment to fight that.
COOPER: Some folks on the stage tonight were talking about raising capital gains tax.
Is that something you are behind as well?
COOPER: Because there's a lot of folks at the very high level who, if you are focusing on salaries, what they're saying is you're really missing what the real inequity is, which is --
WARREN: -- understand. We should do a much better job on taxes on income. We should close up loopholes. There's a lot of what we do that makes no sense at all. But let's pay attention to wealth.
Wealth inequality is where it has just totally jumped the rails. Think about it this way. This is what the income distribution looks like. You know what the wealth distribution looks like for people that don't have anything?
It does this and then it goes through the ceiling and up into the stratosphere. A 2-cent tax on the top 0.1 of 1 percent in America is about 75,000 fortunes. So the $50 million you get to keep free and clear and then 50 millionth first dollar you pitch in 2 cents and 2 cents on every dollar after that.
You know much money that produces?
Enough for universal child care for every baby age 0-5, enough for universal pre-K for every 3-year old and 4-year old, enough to raise the wages of every child care worker and preschool teacher, enough to provide universal technical school apprenticeship programs, community college, four-year college for every kid, enough to raise the Pell grant so it's a meaningful access to college, enough to put $50 billion into historically black colleges and universities, enough to cancel student loan debt, where 95 percent of the kids who got it, enough to make a meaningful difference and start to close the black- white wealth gap in America and still have hundreds of billions of dollars left over, money we can use, for example, to attack the opioid crisis, money we can use to address the black-white entrepreneurship gap.
This produces money because America's economy is so broken right now. We have let these giant fortunes accumulate and they're getting bigger every year. Two cents, it's not (INAUDIBLE). These guys at the top, last year, the 99 percent paid out 7.2 percent of their total wealth and taxes. That's most of the people watching the show. The 1 percent paid 3.2 percent. So ask them to pitch in 2 cents and it's still not a level playing field.
And here's the deal, this is something that is popular, not just with Democrats, not just with (INAUDIBLE), this is something that independents like and a majority of Republicans support.
It is a big idea that we can all get behind and will make a meaningful difference in people's lives.
COOPER: Senator Warren, we appreciate your time.
WARREN: It's so good to see you. Thank you.
COOPER: Coming back with our political team, a lot more, some of the key moments from tonight.
Let's go over there to --
COOPER: How do you feel, Senator Warren and Senator Biden -- excuse me -- Sanders did in terms of fending off the push from the more moderate?
Well, I thought, as I said earlier, I think they had a great night. And I mean in terms of repelling those people. And what Senator Warren said is true. I have questions about the viability of some of the proposals -- and I've said so.
I think Medicare for all under Sanders' forum is one that is a political liability. She is right about the wealth tax. If you look at polling, that is an idea that actually more than raising taxes on the wealthy, income taxes, the wealth tax is when -- the question is whether it's doable and there's quite a bit of debate about that.
COOPER: You're still here. I was giving you an out if you want to answer David.
WARREN: Actually, here's the question, David.
When you say is it doable?
We live in a democracy. And if it's something the majority the people want, then why shouldn't it happen?
I get it, I get that rich people own more cars than poor people. I get they may have bigger houses. But they shouldn't own more democracy. In my view when the majority of people want to see this happen -- and I mean big majorities want to see this happen -- then we ought to be able to make it happen.
And if we don't, it is because the guys at the top have way too much influence.
AXELROD: I hesitate to say to an eminent law professor but my understanding is the argument is about, legally, how that -- there are some legal issues.
VAN JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I think the question is, we are a democracy but we are a democratic republic. And in a democratic republic, there is a constitution and --
JONES: -- the Constitution may or may not allow for this.
So what if one of your most popular ideas is unconstitutional?
WARREN: Oh, come on.
You think I didn't talk to constitutional law firms about this?
WARREN: Because it didn't come up. Of course. And they assure me --
WARREN: -- I'm confident we can do this.
JONES: -- constitutional muster to take wealth -- not the income tax --
WARREN: Sure. We do property taxes all the time. Yes, I think we can do this one.
JONES: Let me ask you a question. I felt that your answer with regard to the people who like their insurance may have left some people cold. I think if you tell someone, Medicare for all, who want it, like Pete does, that makes sense.
But if you tell people, I'm going to force you into a government system, they may rebel, even people that like it. I don't know how you sell that.
WARREN: So let's just talk for a minute. We have a system right now --
WARREN: -- it's sucks.
JONES: Yes, my mom just passed -- you know, mom just passed away so you -- WARREN: I'm sorry.
JONES: -- but how then do you get someone who likes it to say, I'm going to let Elizabeth Warren force me into a public system?
It's like public transportation. I got a car, you say I got to give it up and get on a subway?
Maybe the subway's nice if I want it. But then you say I have to be in it.
WARREN: So, look, I think that it's entirely fair to say, because you got to lay it all you there, let people look at it, let people negotiate it, see what all the details are and let people have a say in those details.
So I think very seriously when the unions say, wait a minute, this is part of our compensation. My answer on that is the unions get a seat at the table. Nobody passes anything without getting the unions in there and, saying, so what's the deal?
Do you have to change the laws in terms of compensation?
What happens with those packages, do people get cash equivalents?
So I get it. This is not --
JONES: So you're open to some of the process part. But at the end of the day, private insurance (INAUDIBLE) --
WARREN: Look, it's the process part but it's also the other half about the unsustainability of what we're doing. You know, when talk about, they want to do two systems. We'll let people who want to have health insurance, you're not -- you got to remember, that means all those community hospitals still have to fill out all the forms.
Every doctor still has to fill out all of those forms. Every insurance company still has the capacity to say, no, we're not covering what your doctor prescribed.
AXELROD: But, Senator, let me just ask you this question, because you make a very powerful argument for, if people support it, we are democracy, we ought to have it.
So what about when people don't support it?
That means a large majority of people don't support this idea. They don't support decriminalizing the border. These are things I know you feel passionately about, you make a powerful argument for them. But they are not supported.
WARREN: They're not supported today. And ObamaCare was not supported at the beginning. This is what leadership is about. We figure out what is right and then we build a movement to get it done. That's how we make change.
If we just waited for hundreds of millions of people to jump on board, we wouldn't be making any changes that all. This is our chance to make real change and that's what I'm trying to do.
GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: But let's talk about the opposite, which is that 89 percent of voters in this country believe in universal background checks, 90 percent. That hasn't happened.
WARREN: Exactly and that makes my point. And you know why it hasn't happened?
It's corruption in Washington, plain and simple. We have a government that kowtows to the NRA. The NRA uses its money and uses its influence to keep our children at risk because they will not give in.
COOPER: One last question.
JOHN KING, CNN HOST: So help a kid from Dorchester whose first campaign was 1988, when Governor Dukakis was the Democratic nominee for Massachusetts. He lost 40 states. No time changing of the country change (ph).
But what convinces you that, A, with the human chain saw president we have now, who already says you're a socialist, that you can sell all this in one national election, that you can sell Medicare for all, the Green New Deal, health care benefits for the undocumented and so on and so forth in one national election?
WARREN: So here's the national election. Donald Trump has already made basically his one-sentence pitch and that is, anything in your life that's bad, like you haven't gotten a raise, you are worried about sending your kids -- whatever it is, blame them, people who aren't the same color as you, people who weren't born where you were born, people who don't worship like you, people who don't -- blame them.
That is his message. My message is, you have things that are broken in your life?
I'll tell you exactly why. It's because giant corporations, billionaires, have --
WARREN: -- seized our government. And for decades now, they have been making that government work for a thinner and thinner slice at the top. And they do it mostly out of the headlines. Just a little tilt here, just a little shift there. Just a little exception, until, over time, they've gotten richer and richer and richer and richer and richer and everybody else is left eating dirt.
But that is the message. And that's what we need to get out there and talk about and then not enough just to say it's wrong, to say we actually have a plan to fix it. We go after the corruption head on, we restructure this economy in a couple of basic ways, make it easier to join a union, give workers some power. Pass a wealth tax and protect our democracy.
That needs to be a part of what we talk about, that we never talked about tonight. We need to make the economy and the democracy not just for everyone and not just for those at the top but for everyone.
KING: But it's a lot of power and influence. You say it won't be corrupt power and influence but it's still a lot of power and influence in Washington.
What convinces you that people, especially in some of these states that are, let's just say, to the right of Massachusetts, are not ready to support that?
WARREN: I think when we talk to people for example about the tax on billionaires, they are ready to support, it, when they talk about cutting their kids' student loan debt, man they're in.
Talk to people what it's like today on child care. How many mamas can't finish their education, can't take a job, how many daddies are saying, I can't do this, we simply cannot get -- ?
JONES: What I like about that, you make me feel like help is on the way. You make me feel like something good can happen in America. You make me feel good. You make me feel like -- it's hard out here.
WARREN: -- but this is the point. This is what optimism is all about. Optimism is knowing what's broken, laying out a plan to fix it and then building a movement to make it happen. It means we have the power.
COOPER: Just one final question, for people trying to choose between you and former vice president Biden, why are you a better candidate?
WARREN: I'm not here to diss any other Democrat; just get somebody else for that job, that's not me. I've laid out my vision of what I believe we can do as a country and I'll get out there and --
COOPER: But when then is just fixing the Affordable Care Act not enough?
WARREN: That's what I just talked about. That it leaves us with an insurance system that sucks $23 billion out and leaves people who need their health care coverage fighting with their insurance companies to try to get coverage.
The system is not sustainable, so either we fix it or we let the insurance companies continue to suck money out of the system and doctors go down, community hospitals go down and most of all patients are the ones who go down.
NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: How do bring Republicans along on these plans?
Well, they're already there. I think this old paradigm of left/right, man I just don't think it works anymore. But I think it's about now understanding who is controlling Washington and people look around, you come to a place like Michigan and talk about how has trade policy been written in America or industrial policy been written in America for decades now?
And the answer is let giant corporations do just whatever the heck they want to do. It's not working, they have no loyalty to America. And if they think they'll save a nickel by moving a job to Mexico, done.
If they think they can continue to pollute the air by moving that factory to Vietnam, done. We need something that says the government is not on the side of those guys, the government is on the side of the people.
Without a government on the side of the people, the giant corporations keep running the whole game and everybody else falls further and further behind.
BORGER: But what do you say to voters that say, you're asking for too much?
We've been through a couple of years -- three years and it's been too much and I'm exhausted by it. And you're asking me now to flip completely and I don't want to deal with it.
WARREN: What I'm saying is --
BORGER: Too much.
WARREN: -- if it's still not working, we have got to find a solution. All I'm asking for is three things. Attack the corruption head on, make a couple of structural changes in this economy and protect our democracy. If we do those three things, we can build in America that doesn't just work for those at the top but an America that works for everybody.
COOPER: Senator Warren, thank you very much.
AXELROD: Thanks for another hour.
COOPER: We're on until 2:00 if you want to come back.
COOPER: We're going to take a quick break.
COOPER: Chris is going to be back next with more.
COOPER: Welcome back, we heard from Senator Elizabeth Warren just before the break in a lengthy interview that just about everybody here joining me -- Chris, I know you were listening as well. It's an interesting night where, even after debating for hours, these folks come by.
Elizabeth Warren could've sat here for quite a while had her people not sort of been, all right, I think this is enough.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: Look, I think they can't do it enough. Even in watching that interview, which was a unique experience for David, Kirsten and me to be watching it, they start to say the same things again and again if they don't get tested and give people different looks and chew on their ideas. And that is what you're getting for the opportunity to do it.
And in fact, we offer invitations like that all the time. More people should take it. But your question was the key one, with all due respect to your panel.
She can defend her ideas all day long and attack the machine and attack the wealthy. The bottom line is --
CUOMO: -- she wants what Joe Biden has and his positions are more salable to the American people than hers, if you look at the polls.
What does she do with that?
COOPER: Yes, well, also clearly to see them both on a stage together or Bernie Sanders, that's all the luck of the draw but that would certainly be a fascinating part and obviously that is coming.
CUOMO: That is part of the evolution and I turn that to the better minds sitting next to me now, Anderson. But that is the key question. She can defend it all day long. She's brilliant. She's a law professor. She's been thinking about this stuff for years. There's no question that she's tested the constitutionality of an additional assessment on wealth.
But can you test the salability to the American people of how they feel about it?
DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: This election will test that. That is what will happen when people start casting their ballots. I do think we cannot forget -- and I know Donald Trump is a unique figure in American politics and I'm not comparing him to Elizabeth Warren -- but he took positions in the primary in the last election season that we did not think were salable to the general election at large.
A Muslim ban?
That was going somehow going to be salable to the general public or building a wall and getting Mexico to pay for it?
But it was. He found a way. He was unique and there were a lot of circumstances but I don't think we can, at this stage of the game, rule out that, like we saw on the Republican side over the last 20 years, has a certain faction of the party gotten more currency with not just the wing of the party but with the American people at large, that that could potentially happen on the left as well.
I take you point.
CUOMO: The pendular formation of politics that there's equal momentum when it moves back in that direction.
KIRSTEN POWERS, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, but -- or the Democratic voters are looking for disruption also, right. So the other things he did, he attacked the Iraq War. The attacked the Bushes and you would think -- you look at that in the Republican primary and you think you can't do that. He went after FOX News. He did all these things are not supposed to do in a Republican primary and it didn't matter.
So I think Elizabeth Warren, what she was saying is it's our job as leaders to move the party in the direction that we want them to go and not just reflect back to them what we think that they want.
CUOMO: I totally understand the mindset and the question becomes, what the pragmatism behind it?
When you look at the American people, why does Biden get this bounce when the president is obnoxious?
It's seems to be that -- and in all due fairness -- and please tell me if you disagree -- I don't see that Biden made moments since the last debate. I think this president has and the Democrats have said, oh, my God, I really don't want this president anymore. It has to be him.
How does she change that?
POWERS: But I think Democrats are confused. I think they don't know how to beat Donald Trump. So maybe Biden, because he seems stable and he's a white guy and he's sort of moderate but then I don't know and -- you know, Randi Kaye did a very interesting focus group, where there wasn't a single person in there who was excited about Joe Biden. So you can see how people are sort of going to him because they think
maybe he can win. But they are not really enthused about him. And so I think that people are watching these debates and trying to figure that out.
Who can beat Trump?
We don't know.
CUOMO: We have a group of Iowa voters coming up who watched the debate and they will give us their take and it's good. It's good to get some minds that aren't processing this 24/7 just to get that instant reflection. We will bring that a little bit later.
Go ahead, David.
CHALIAN: The disruption that you're talking about, there is risk associated with disruption. And so I think that some Democrats, as you said, the president does something, oh, wait, let's just return to normal. Let's get back to normal.
But now you see a candidate who presents the notion of, no, the whole system has to change and that could perhaps excite some Democrats. I do think they weigh this.
I will say though, you talk about the pragmatism, Chris, I think Elizabeth Warren, unlike Bernie Sanders -- I think this is one of their differences -- I think she has more of an ear for what you're talking about so that when she was just pressed on union health care plans, all of a sudden it wasn't like, no, no, no, we're forcing the unions into this because it's going to be great for everyone.
No, it was, oh, unions should have a seat at the table as we go through this process as well. That to me is somebody who understands some of the potential political pitfalls for her position.
CUOMO: I like that she took this opportunity. This is misconception that we love having these kinds of -- this is no bowl of cherries for anybody, by the way, when you are talking to these politicians about these policies, they get upset that there is all this drama.
But I'm happy she took the opportunity because she needed to be tested. Perfect example. I can look at this two ways about this private insurance thing. One, I think it's a scary proposition pragmatically because of what happened with "you can keep your doctor" and the reaction formation to that. Now you say you're going to take the only thing -- it's the second thing that I have in my life after my mortgage, it's the only thing I have. I've bargained away wages. This is the one thing I have. I need it for my family and now you're going to take it?
Versus what Bernie Sanders says, which is I've never met anyone who says they love their insurance company. It could go either way. [00:30:11] KEILAR: Well, yes. And what both Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders are doing is they're really talking about all the problems that we have and the crisis that we have with our health care system. And so that's the reality. Like, people can point to other countries and say, "Oh, well, people have to wait in line for something." People wait here. You know, the system is actually not that great. But it is also hard, in the middle of a primary, to be educating people about this.
But I do think another thing that Elizabeth Warren has going for her that you saw tonight was she was just chewing up and spitting people out. When they came at her, she was just like -- no problem.
CUOMO: It's a contact sport, too. People need to see that.
KEILAR: And that is -- and that's what people are looking for with Donald Trump, right? Seeing how, when people come at her, she is -- she just has the quick comebacks. She takes just -- doesn't take anything from anybody. And I think that that is going to resonate a lot with the people who are looking for people who can come back at Donald Trump. And -- and Joe Biden wasn't doing that in the last debate.
CHALIAN: I think it's so smart, because this is -- I've been saying this since the last debate. As much as there was an argument about busing, it also wasn't about busing.
CHALIAN: that was Kamala Harris showing a Democratic primary audience that she knew how to sort of land a punch --
CHALIAN: -- against a front runner and show that she -- so that Democrats could say, "Oh, maybe I can see her on the stage with Donald Trump."
And I think you're right. I think Elizabeth Warren also was demonstrating tonight -- she didn't care about smacking back John Delaney, obviously.
CHALIAN: But she wanted to show Democratic voters who are thinking about this electability argument that she is equipped to take on opponents.
CUOMO: I would argue that this was a better one than for Kamala Harris, because that looked planned --
CUOMO: -- to hurt Joe Biden. CHALIAN: Yes.
CUOMO: And it used race. She can say, "I don't think you're a racist," but the most important word in the sentence was "but." And they had T-shirts ready; they were ready to go.
This was just organic. I'm not looking to fight. I'm looking to have a positive conversation. But if you bring it at me, you're going to bleed.
And I think that --
CUOMO: -- as crass as that sounds, that's what happens on the stage --
CUOMO: -- especially when you're going against the most fearsome politician in a generation, and that is this president.
CUOMO: All right. Let's take a quick break. Thank you both. Next, what I promised you. Voters in Iowa, people who want to make a decision, they watched. What did they think? That's coming.
[00:36:18] COOPER: Hey, welcome back. We've been talking about the candidates tonight. And, of course, a great team of experts, but when it comes right down to it, of course, the voters are going to decide. So want to hear from some voters.
Our Gary Tuchman is in Iowa tonight with men and women that we spoke to after the last debate. They're all undecided. We're going to keep talking to them throughout the campaign, to see what moves them and their votes.
Gary, what are you hearing tonight?
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, we're in Iowa City at the University of Iowa, in Johnson County, Iowa. And the reason we've come here twice is because this is the most Democratic county in the state. This is the only county that Hillary Clinton won in a landslide over Donald Trump in the state of Iowa in 2016.
So these are important voters, these nine people in front of me, because if you don't do well in Johnson County on Iowa caucuses day as a Democratic candidate, you're not going to do well statewide. So that's why we want to talk to these folks.
Nine people. We talked to you five weeks ago, and you thought that Warren did the best in the first debate and that Kamala Harris did the best in the second debate. Tonight, we want to do a lightning round to find out very quickly what your consensus. You, among the most important voters in the United States of America right now.
Who do you think did the best?
KATE, IOWA VOTER: I think what you made the comment on, about being statewide is the important thing, and I think being more moderate in the state of Iowa will go far. And farmers and real people don't want --
TUCHMAN: And you're a farmer, Kate, so who do you think did the best tonight?
KATE: I think they want affordable. And I think Bullock, and Klobuchar and Ryan did a good job of bringing that argument out.
TUCHMAN: Who do you think did the best tonight?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Warren did.
TUCHMAN: Warren. Who do you think did the best?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would say Warren.
TUCHMAN: Who do you think, the best performance?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Warren.
TUCHMAN: Warren also. Who do you think did the best performance this evening?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Warren.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Warren.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Warren.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Warren.
TUCHMAN: I keep saying, "Warren," but you guys keep saying, "Warren." And who do you think the best?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Warren.
TUCHMAN: So an overwhelming victory, you believe, for Warren tonight.
Now Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren did not sound that much different in their comments tonight. Why has nobody said anything about Bernie Sanders?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think with Bernie Sanders -- if you would have asked me in the first half, I would have said he's definitely winning, but in the second half, he went and kind of fell into his old shtick of talking about the top 1 percent and not really answering the question that was asked but going back to that.
It's like this is your time to say something new. Please say something new. I want to like you.
TUCHMAN: Is that an Iowa term, "shtick"? I'm just joking about that.
"Shtick" does mean you say the same thing over and over again, and it comes back. I'm just kind of joking around with you, keeping it light a little bit.
Anybody else think the same thing about Sanders? They felt was too canned or too contrived? Is that what you think?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, absolutely. I mean, it was the same Bernie Sanders that we saw four years ago. I mean, he fell into that same rut, so I would agree.
TUCHMAN: Now who -- the second best, a lot of you were saying you felt that Buttigieg. But why didn't you think Buttigieg did the best?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Actually, I think he's, you know, solid with his answers. He's not the fighter that Elizabeth is.
TUCHMAN: So is that what you think, though? That she is more of a fighter than all of these candidates?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, big time. Big time.
TUCHMAN: Like anti-Trump you mean?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think that going up against Trump, she has a very good standing ground, and she can dish it. You know? Like give it to him and stand -- stand up --
TUCHMAN: So you all want a candidate who can dish it?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
Now, Amy Klobuchar, a neighbor from Minnesota. You all told me you liked her before I met you five weeks ago. How come I don't hear her mentioned in who did the best?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She came across -- I mean, as we were saying earlier, just as canned. I mean, just well-rehearsed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She had a lot of one-liners.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, not a lot of the same passion and fire that Elizabeth Warren presented tonight.
TUCHMAN: But every one of you told me you agree with Amy Klobuchar. Isn't that enough? I mean, how come she didn't impress you? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, I really want her to impress me, because
she's the only one other there with a mental illness plan.
TUCHMAN: Which is important to you?
[00:40:02] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is important to me. But I need her to reach our hearts, in addition to our minds. I think that's what we were hoping for all of them to do, is to reach everybody's hearts.
TUCHMAN: So did Elizabeth Warren reach your hearts? Is that why eight of you thought she did the best?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She's a fighter. I think Amy, I've seen her in person, and she knocked it out of the park. But the 30-second answer maybe was not her -- her best way.
TUCHMAN: Let me -- OK, let me ask you this question. Marianne Williamson, OK?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, God.
TUCHMAN: She was interesting and fun to watch, right? Were you impressed by her?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She was surprisingly comprehensible this time, rather than last time. But --
TUCHMAN: So could anyone vote for her for president?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
TUCHMAN: And you said that disdainfully. Why do you say that?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It just -- I just can't do it. I can't. I can't bring myself to really take her seriously as a candidate with no experience whatsoever and just sort of disregard for her policy. And --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She really didn't answer questions substantively, though.
TUCHMAN: But were you entertained by her? I mean, she sounded articulate, right?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I'm entertained --
TUCHMAN: Or not. I don't want to put words in your mouth. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She's not into plans, and she's not into
TUCHMAN: But did you enjoy watching her, I guess, is what I'm saying?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
TUCHMAN: You didn't? So you thought it was silly?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, we aren't looking for an entertainer in our president. We're looking for a leader.
TUCHMAN: Here's a final question for you. Have any of you -- I asked you this five weeks ago, and no one was ready to say they'd made a commitment. We still have one more night tomorrow night. Has anyone made a decision who they're going to vote for, which Democrat, in the caucuses?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
TUCHMAN: Do you think after tomorrow you might?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Maybe.
TUCHMAN: That could be a tease for our audience if you say yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Maybe.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We'll see.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There's a lot of time to pass.
TUCHMAN: Thank you for sticking around with us.
I want to tell our viewers one thing. Some of our eagle-eyed viewers, Anderson, might notice we had 12 people the first time five weeks ago. Now have nine. We did not make three of them walk the plank and leave. They're on vacation, and we told them have a great vacation. We will continue with our nine panelists.
Anderson, back to you.
COOPER: Great. Well, we appreciate them coming and hope the folks are having a great vacation. Gary, thanks very much.
I want to bring back in our political team. I mean, it's always great to hear from people and how they view this, and especially ones who have -- we follow debate to debate, John.
KING: That is your crystal-clear proof, not just here in this room, among the people who actually get to vote. They vote in 187 days, and they go first. Elizabeth Warren is the growth stock in the Democratic race right now.
I sat down with four African-American undecided voters here before the debate. Three women said Warren impressed them the most. Three women said they were looking at Warren. They were still undecided. Why? They like her plans, and they like her fight.
And I think to the point earlier, about if the Democrats are thinking who could beat Trump, I think the fight is helping there.
Remember, when people start to vote -- and we'll see what happens tomorrow night. No. 1, we're going to lose a lot of candidates after these two debates. And when people start --
COOPER: How many do you think will be gone?
KING: I am going to guess that, by the next debate, they might be able to do it in one night, that we might get down -- because of the qualifications.
Now, one or two of those candidates might say, "I'm going to go camp out in Iowa," or "I'm going to go camp out in New Hampshire." One of them may say, "I'm going to try to stay in." But it's very hard. It's very hard to raise the money. It's very hard to get the visibility. It doesn't mean it's impossible. It doesn't mean it's impossible. But you're going to see this field cut in half, I think, maybe even more than that.
But back to the Warren thing just for a second. As she grows, she's making her case. She's showing fight, and because she has surprised a lot of people by being able to raise significant money without doing the bid-donor fundraisers, she's also building an infrastructure in these states. And that matters.
HENDERSON: Yes. And it matters a lot to Bernie Sanders. Right? I mean, you didn't hear anyone say anything really positive about Bernie Sanders. One woman basically said, you know, it's like listening to a broken record.
I think one of the things that he has a problem with is he's sort of been running for president since 2016, nonstop every day, all the time. And so you see that effect, I think.
With Elizabeth Warren, she brings her full self to every debate, to every interview, to every rally. We saw that here tonight. And you think about some of these other candidates like Klobuchar, well, she might be good in one setting, like at a town hall or something. She wasn't very good tonight.
COOPER: Yes. Governor -- sorry. Governor McAuliffe, because I know we're going to lose you in a little bit. What -- what do you make of the divide that you saw on that stage tonight?
TERRY MCAULIFFE, FORMER VIRGINIA GOVERNOR: Listen, what you see with these -- what you just saw with that audience, which is fascinating. So the under card candidates who had to have a breakout moment, Bullock and Hickenlooper, Ryan, had to do something; Delaney. They didn't even get talked about.
So you're in Iowa, and your whole message is "New Green Deal doesn't work. Forget it. Medicaid for all is ever going to happen." That argument is not working in Iowa.
So these folks have got to rethink their whole campaign. That's why I think it's going to end very quickly for a lot of these candidates. That was very instructive, that there was no oxygen for any of the candidates besides, really, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.
[00:45:04] I thought Warren did a great job tonight. She really did. I loved it on the whole Medicare for all. She made her difference. She talked about that Eddie, that individual. She humanized it; she made it personal. I think that's what separated her.
COOPER: But also, the word that -- that one person used there was "fighter," which I do think on that stage, you know, even if you're not agreeing with certain ideas of hers, she has -- you know, what voters are saying is she has an energy and a fight to her that they're not seeing in other people.
MCAULIFFE: People want to see somebody, A, who can take on Trump. But they also want to see someone lead our party with stamina, vigor and new ideas. She was very impressive sitting here. Whether you agree with her or you don't agree with her, golly, give it a try. What the heck? The same old stuff ain't working. Let's go. Honestly. It's exciting.
HENDERSON: Can I just --
MCINTOSH: It's excitement. It's excitement and energy. And I think that that's one of the things that differentiates her from Bernie so much. He seems irritated when you challenge him. I watched you all from the side press her for, you know, 15 minutes about her ideas.
COOPER: To no avail.
MCINTOSH: And she was excited to answer all of your questions, even when they were coming at her from --
JONES: Sitting next to her was like sitting next to a battery. I mean, there's just --
MCINTOSH: I'm sorry that I'm here to drain you.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, that was like -- She was leaning forward. She's looking at everybody like this. She's like -- she's totally committed. She's all in. She's like a coiled spring. And people feel like she's going to knock him out because -- just by virtue of that energy.
BORGER: But if he -- if Donald Trump is thoughtful --
COOPER: It just made me feel like a sloth. I'm barely hanging on, and it's not even -- what is it? Midnight.
AXELROD: She's out there doing laps right now.
BORGER: But if Donald Trump exhausts voters, which he does --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She can't exhaust voters. She can energize them.
BORGER: Well, she -- you know, she might, but she's not new. People have seen her for quite some time.
COOPER: I've got to get a break in. Still to come, we're going to have more on the debate tonight, some of the key moments in the battle between Democratic progressives and moderates.
Also, how we may see that fight spill over into tomorrow night's debate when the second round of ten candidates takes the stage here in Detroit. We'll be right back.
[00:51:17] CUOMO: This has been quite a night, not just the debate but how about the post-debate. Elizabeth Warren sitting with the CNN crew for, like, 30 minutes, taking their questions.
And that's why you never know how it's going to go. It's always about the moments and what resonates and for whom.
So, let's talk about what came up tonight, what mattered, what the plus/minus is of from different people's attempts to make a difference.
Here is one example. Beto O'Rourke, OK, he was looking to make a move on something tonight. He chose -- he made different choices -- but reparations for African-Americans came up, and he took some ownership of it. Here's what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BETO O'ROURKE (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I want to acknowledge something that we're all touching on, which is the very foundation of this country. The wealth that we have built, the way we became the greatest country on the planet, was literally on the backs of those who were kidnapped and brought here by force.
The legacy of slavery and the segregation and Jim Crow and suppression is alive and well in every aspect of the economy and in the country today. As president, I will sign into law a new Voting Rights Act. I will focus on education, address health care disparities, but I will also sign into law Sheila Jackson Lee's reparations bill so that we can have the national conversation we've waited too long in this country to have.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CUOMO: All right. Smattering of applause there. Let's discuss its significance. CNN senior political analyst Mark Preston; CNN political analyst April Ryan. She's White House correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks. Also, CNN Politics reporter and editor at large, Chris Cillizza. Good to have each and all. Thank to see you. Thanks to see you.
April Ryan, reparations. Does it help him in party, hurt him in a general?
APRIL RYAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: It helps him in party. It could hurt him in the general, because that is such a touchy issue. A lot of Americans, too, include black Americans, not always as far in on this issue. But it is an issue that is gaining so much momentum.
Chris, I remember back 22 years ago during the Bill Clinton era. Bill Clinton had the chance to make an apology for slavery. He didn't. The issue also, not only beyond an apology for slavery, if you did apologize, that meant to repair the wrong. You know? Reparations. What did reparations look like? Who would get reparations, you know? And that's kind of a slippery slope.
But going back to Beto O'Rourke tonight, when he said that he would indeed sign the bill into law of Sheila Jackson Lee has on the table, that's for establishing a commission to look at it. That's about a commission. It's not about saying, "I'm going to give you reparations."
So the devil is in the details there. The step is coming forward. There's more conversation about it now. But at issue, again, will there be direct payments? You know, Amy Klobuchar does not believe in direct payments to the descendants of African slaves.
But then you have people like Bernie Sanders, who doesn't believe in direct payments also, but he says they need to put the money into the communities. We've seen so much money going to these communities, and still, you know, like Baltimore -- I'm for Baltimore -- Baltimore is still hurting.
So you're damned if you do and damned if you don't.
CUOMO: So I have to believe that the president and his strategists hear this discussion in this debate.
RYAN: They're watching.
CUOMO: They love it, because it's like base food of this "left is crazy," that kind of argument.
MARK PRESTON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, because what they can do is they can take what happened in this debate tonight, and they can cut it up into these little bite-size chunks. And sometimes will probably take it out of context, but it will work really well in a 30- second ad or work really well in a quick tweet with a little bit of a video.
But what we did see on the stage behind us, we didn't really see a disagreement on some of the major issues about how to get there. Not necessarily that we need to get there but how do we get there?
[00:55:09] CUOMO: Marianne Williamson had a whole equation based on 40 acres and a mule and what it would mean --
RYAN: Yes, she did. Yes, she did.
CUOMO: -- in today's dollars.
CHRIS CILLIZZA, CNN POLITICS REPORTER AND EDITOR AT LARGE: I think just one thing to add to Mark's point. I think I was watching the focus group and people talking about Warren winning. I thought Warren had a very solid debate. I didn't think it was as clear a win as her first debate. But she's an able debater, a very bright woman who has a real command of policy, and it comes out. Right?
That said, she was out there very much aggressively promoting, when asked, decriminalizing illegal immigration. If she is going to be the nominee -- and I think she's one of a handful of people who can do it -- that's a a big, big flashlight, even for people who say what Donald Trump has done on the border is morally wrong. That as a solution is problematic, politically speaking.
CUOMO: Let's get in a quick break. We'll keep talking about this. This is good, because we have to figure out. One of the axiomatic things in primary politics, is doing say anything in the primary that you can't explain in a general. When we come back in a few moments, with more moments that people are going to be talking about in an hour and a half.
[01:00:00] COOPER: And a very big night in Democratic primary politics. Another big one is, of course, coming up tomorrow night. Ten candidates debated tonight, ten more will be on the state later today. That's right. It is already after midnight here Eastern Time. Time to dig into more of what happened here in Detroit which mainly highlighted the split between progressives and moderates in the Democratic Party, also turned at times to a President Trump. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: President Trump has argued that the United States cannot continue to be the "policeman of the world." You said the exact same thing on a debate stage in 2016. If voters are hearing the same message from you and President Trump on the issue of military intervention, how should they expect that you will be any different from him?
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D-VT), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Trump is a pathological liar. I tell the truth. We have been in Afghanistan I think 18 years, in Iraq 16 or 17 years. We have spent $5 trillion on the war on terror and there are probably more terrorists out there now than before it began.
We're going to spend -- the Congress passed and I will not vote for a $715 billion military budget more than the ten next countries combined. What we need is a foreign policy that focuses on diplomacy ending conflicts like people sitting at a table not by killing each other.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Back now with our political team. And joining us former Republican Senator and presidential candidate Rick Santorum who's replaced the governor.
RICK SANTORUM, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Who doesn't belong and why?
COOPER: It's 1:00. Anything can happen.
SANTORUM: Elizabeth Warren fanatic.
COOPER: Yes, exactly.
JOHN KING, CNN ANCHOR: He slipped him in under the cloak of night.
COOPER: But I'm wondering just -- you know, it's very easy when it's a bunch of Democrats in a room and they all start to talk to each other and they all start to build each other off and think oh yes, this is a really good idea. Just for a dose of Republican reality or at least reality from the Republican standpoint, what did you see on this stage tonight?
SANTORUM: I saw what you just lit in with, a clear fisher. I mean, there's a -- there's a fisher in the Democratic Party between the Sanders, Warren, Williamson and questionable who else wing of the party and everybody else -- almost everybody else on that stage.
I thought that Sanders and Warren won the debate in the sense that they were much better at defending their position than the people who were attacking them on those positions. That's the problem for the Democratic Party from my perspective which is you don't have credit -- you don't have a credible moderate other than Joe Biden.
And query whether Joe Biden can carry the debate against a Warren and a Sanders who really are passionate. And Biden for a lot of things, I mean, I just -- I don't think he'll stack up well any better than the people tonight did. I thought the person who probably did the best job was Delaney but I just don't think he fits the figure that can win and even do better in a Democratic primary.
The person who as someone who as someone who was looking for someone to step up and do a good job was Amy Klobuchar. And she -- I don't know what's in the water in Minnesota but Tim Pawlenty four years ago -- excuse me, eight years ago you know, when he was given the softball and he whiffed on ObamaCare. And now we have Klobuchar given the softball by the team and she just whisked on it.
HENDERSON: But she was much better after, right, when she was --
SANTORUM: But it couldn't matter. You missed the moment. She missed the moment. And --
HENDERSON: They gave her the moment and she just kind of collapsed.
SANTORUM: And again --
She does not like being confrontational.
SANTORUM: Minnesota nice.
The whole state is honestly like that. I worked there for many years.
SANTORUM: Yes, I agree.
MCINTOSH: And she is sitting there at 70 percent approval rating because she will not make anybody be upset with her.
HENDERSON: She also not -- she's also not making a case for what a Klobuchar administration would be, right. I mean, her main argument is listen, I'm from the heartland. The party needs to be represented by somebody from the heartland, and I don't think that's enough. She just doesn't have enough of a vision for what she would do as president.
KING: As the guy -- as the guy who gave Pawlenty that softball, I put it right there.
SANTORUM: It's a CNN thing.
KING: I put it right there. No, I do -- I do think and I talked to the governor at length after this. His staff was furious at me. He was mad about it. He said, of course, I should answer the question. You want to be President of the United States, the Democrat -- someone to beat Donald Trump. You know, with all respect to Senator Klobuchar, if you're going to say it in television, and again, she did immediately after the debate, you have to stay it when the person is right there five feet away.
You got to look him in the eye and say tough enough to be President. I'm sorry, Van, I disagree with you on this, and this is why. You got to do it.
AXELROD: This has been a true -- this was true in this debate, in the last debate she was on the stage with Elizabeth Warren. She had a chance to challenge her in some of these she didn't do it. It was true. And even in her town hall meeting, she has televised town halls, she does not like to be confrontational in that and that way and I think it is a liability.
I mean, I'm one who believes that you know -- you know, unrelenting pugilism is also not necessarily the way to go. But there are times when you have to draw the distinctions. If you want to be the moderate candidate, if you are making the case that you can win because you represent the mainstream, then define what you mean, call out the positions that are on the other side, create a moment and she just couldn't do it. [01:05:43] BORGER: Well, she's afflicted I think with that disease
called being a senator and she sounds like a senator. She sounds like she's on the floor of the Senate. I mean, this is not an evil thing at all but where people sort of say OK, it's your turn to talk it's your turn to talk, and she --
JONES: I think the worse part of that is --
AXELROD: Well, if she keeps it up, that's going to be a long term --
BORGER: And she is known as somebody who compromises in the Senate, who knows how to work on both sides of the aisle.
JONES: Compromise is not in the -- in the negative sense. Compromise -- she's just actually one of the most accomplished --
JONES: I think -- I think that's one of the unfortunate things about this age that we're in now. You have somebody who's really one of the most accomplished senators that we have, one of the most beloved senators that we have who can get stuff done under Trump which is very, very hard to do without losing any support.
She has a -- she's a political genius for her moment, for her state, for her time. It's a genius that we meet in this party and it does not transcend in this debate.
MCINTOSH: But the things that she tries to get done are things that have like near universal support. It's all consumer safety.
HENDERSON: It's kind of things.
MCINTOSH: Yes, but it's not going to be the kind of thing that --
BORGER: I wouldn't say that. I wouldn't say that. I wouldn't --
COOPER: Well, let me -- senator, do you think this whole debate about Medicare for all and telling people to -- they have to give up their private insurance which Sanders and Warren say well, that's a Republican talking point, but it is still in the end a factual thing about what would happen. Do you think that is political suicide for the Democratic Party?
SANTORUM: I think there are a handful of things the Democrat -- that Warren and Sanders are for that are just death for the Democratic Party. One is getting rid of people's private insurance. Number two, I believe, paying off people's student debt.
74 percent of Americans don't have a college degree, 74 percent. The people that they're out there talking about, the working men and women who are struggling hard, they don't have college degrees, and you're asking them to pay off the debts of people who partied their way through school in many cases? That I'm just telling you, you want to go out to working men and women
at Pennsylvania Ohio and you're going to say hey, we're going to have all these kids at Harvard who have all this money, I'm just telling you, it's a loser. And so those two -- there's there several other things, but those two big things in the States that they need to win, big trouble.
JONES: Well, I see it slightly differently in that. I agree with you that telling people -- you know, Medicare for all who don't want it, we're going to force you into a government program, I don't think that that works. I think that a Medicare for all who do want it which is a piece -- the thing I like. But I see it differently.
I think on the student loan stuff, I don't think Democrats can go too far left on that, it goes far left as possible because why, yes we will annoy some older voters, but we -- you got people with $200,000 of debt, they will stand in line --
SANTORUM: How about the -- how about the schmuck like me who saved money and put my kids through school, and all of a sudden what a schmuck I am for having den that, and lots -- and lots of parents do that. And they're feel like they got ripped off.
How about the people who actually -- like I did, paid back my student loans and all of a sudden have government's going to come and the guy who didn't who --
JONES: This is what -- this is what I said to you.
SANTORUM: -- who hung out at the bars instead of -- instead of going to work.
SANTORUM: That's a loser. I'm telling you, it's a loser.
JONES: I'm going to tell you that you're wrong. You will be aggrieved, you will be annoyed, it will not be a boating issue for you. But for our base of young people that we've got to get out, you tell them, you stand in line for one hour to vote and you can have $100,000 worth of debt. They will stand in lines for hours and we need them.
GRANHOLM: There's another thing that I think that we as Democrats -- we as Democrats have to pay attention to that nobody's talked about tonight which is this. In Bernie Sanders' closing argument, he makes the case as always about corporations, and corruption, and all of that you know, 99.7 percent of businesses in America are small.
GRANHOLM: And a lot of those small businesses feel like I want to be a big business sometime and we -- and half of Americans work for those small businesses. So I think we've got to be a little bit clearer about saying yes, we're not talking about though what -- that massive corporations who take advantage and have lobbyists, but the small businesses, those should be ours.
MCINTOSH: I think one of the things that Democrats don't do well enough is talking about how the system is currently rigged not just in favor of the rich but to prevent you from becoming rich, to prevent you the small business from becoming a bigger business.
Those regulations are in place to make it difficult for you to make that leap that you want to make. We have to do a better job of explaining that.
[01:10:02] SANTORUM: I think actually one of Elizabeth Warren's best moments when she talked about corporate responsibility and talk about how you know, corporations used to care about their workers. They didn't care about -- and as someone who actually agrees with her that -- and I think what a lot of Republicans look at the sort of greed is good aspect of big corporate life can identify with that.
So look, there are things that she says that makes her a much more attractive than Bernie because Bernie from just listening to him tonight, everybody in the private sector is a crook, everybody is just trying to rape everybody and trying to get as much money as they can, and the only solution is to give government control of everything.
GRANHOLM: She at least talks about economic patriotism.
SANTORUM: She has a softer touch when it comes to that.
BORGER: And I think your arguments are harder to make when the economy is good, and not everybody is feeling pain right now, and you know there was a story on CNN I believe the other day or I read it on cnn.com about people saying you know, I'll grudgingly vote for Donald Trump again even though I don't like him because I'm feeling good about my own personal economic situation.
So what would convince those people to then shift to the Democratic Party? I mean, what Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders are talking about is such a revolution as we've been talking about tonight, and they may not be in the mood for that because they feel like they're OK right now. They don't like Donald Trump particularly but just because they like Bernie, are they going to vote for him?
SANTORUM: The problem is the two people on paper or three people on paper that were best lined up to take on that wing of the party which of the two governors Hickenlooper and Bullock and Klobuchar worse. I mean, Hickenlooper would have been better off had he gotten sick and not showed up.
I mean, I was stunned at how bad he was tonight. And Bullock, it just seemed awkward. He just didn't seem like he really -- he didn't connect. Maybe he's just uncomfortable. And then Amy, aside from swinging and missing, she just seemed nervous and uptight and she just -- she didn't -- I know her. She can really connect --
BORGER: That's why Biden has to do it. SANTORUM: And she didn't connect at all tonight from my perspective
which was disappointing.
AXELROD: You know, I thought -- and Vance said, I thought Pete Buttigieg had a good night. I think he was solid. You know, he presents really well. He has made a decision obviously that he is not going to grab that sort of center lane. He has the skill set to engage. I mean, he's -- in terms of his presence --
SANTORUM: Why do you think he did that?
AXELROD: I think he has a different message. His message is these are all debates, I'm the new generation candidate. We've got -- and I think he thinks he can straddle a line and draw from both -- from both bases. I think he's going to have to think that through.
GRANHOLM: He's got to be more than that though. I mean, it's got to be more than just I'm the next generation. You have to wrap that that thesis in some next-generation ideas and you know, a lot of the stuff he's talking about is similar to what other people are talking about.
I want to hear -- I mean he could wrap some of like Andrew Yang's stuff into that generational thing but I haven't really heard him do that as effectively as --
COOPER: I actually want to play just something that Mayor Buttigieg said sort of along those generation lines and also about the Republicans. Let's listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PETE BUTTIGIEG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It is time to stop worrying about what the Republicans will say. Look if it's true that if we embrace a far-left agenda, they're going to say we're a bunch of crazy socialists. If we embrace a conservative agenda, you know we're they're going to do? They're going to say we're a bunch of crazy socialists. So let's just stand up and for the right policy, go out there and defend it. That's the policy I'm putting forward.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRANHOLM: That was a great line. That was a great line.
AXELROD: But let me just say something about that line.
GRANHOLM: Oh you didn't like that line?
AXELROD: I thought it was a great line. I thought it was a great line. But the fact of the matter is, it is easier to win the case that you are a crazy left-wing party if you support policies that people view as crazy left wing policy. And so I mean, that is --
GRANHOLM: But the point is no matter who it is, they would say John Delaney is crazy socialist.
AXELROD: They would be but your case is stronger if you're not supporting for example eliminating private insurance.
MCINTOSH: But there are cases -- but there are case they're going to be made on an intellectually honest argument, their case is going to be made --
AXELROD: But the case is easier if the candidate is actually a socialist.
JONES: Let me say something of this. I -- this is something that I think is hard for people to get their brains wrapped around. I think the overuse of the terms racist and socialist have had impacts on these parties that is hard to describe. I think that whether Donald Trump does what he does now see that there's a sense in the Republican Party that the word racist is overused that when we use it against Trump, it doesn't matter.
There's also a sense -- when Barack Obama was being called a socialist, when the program's he was putting forward, some of them the Heritage Foundation had signed off on, some of them Romney had run on, McCain had run on, he was called a socialist for whole generation of American. That takes that slur completely off the table.
Also I think there's a generational -- generation to talking past each other. When grandpa tells the granddaughter, you guys want free everything, you're socialist it's wrong. The granddaughter says to grandpa, how much did you pay for college? 13 cents a semester. OK. Well, grandpa, how much do you pay to see a doctor? Oh, I go for free. I got to admit.
Well, will hold on a second. I just want what you have or what you had. Why am I a socialist if I just want the cheap education you got and the free doctor you got? And so there's something that's going on here with the conversation is a little bit off but I think that -- I think that the socialist tag, people maybe under 35 or younger because they call Obama that so often, it doesn't mean a thing to them.
[01:15:58] GRANHOLM: That is not good.
It doesn't mean a thing to them.
GRANHOLM: It's still not good for the Demcrats.
AXELROD: I think it may be true about people under 30 but if -- you know, I'm just grounded in the world of data, OK. If you look at polling, that is -- you know, that is one of the most negative thing to people.
JONES: It's a bad word.
AXELROD: This is something that's a deal breaker for a large numbers of people. This is why the president is saying it. He's not an ideologue, he's a total opportunist. He's saying it because he thinks it will help him. HENDERSON: And the Democratic primary is going to run through states where there are older voters, there are more moderate voters, Conservative voters, African American voters throughout this out, and so I do think within the context of the Democratic primary it is problematic.
KING: Going back to line from Mayor Buttigieg for a minute though, to the point that was made earlier. It's a great line. But it's a great line we have to fight. But then he did not turn either Senator Sanders or Warren and take them on Medicare for all or turn to moderates and say they're wrong. He did not --
HENDERSON: He dropped a good line and got out.
KING: He dropped the good line because he's waiting. He's already qualified for the next debate. He's waiting for the field to get smaller to figure out where the race shifts so that he has manoeuvre --
COOPER: I got to get a break in. We're going to take a short break. The conversation continues.
[01:20:00] COOPER: And welcome back. It is a late night here in Detroit and we're still hanging out. want to check in with Chris Cuomo in what Francis Albert Sinatra
called the wee small hours of the morning. Chris?
CUOMO: Where is my cigarette and my whisky my friend? Thanks for the commercial break.
COOPER: You look like very Sinatra I will say actually.
CUOMO: Blue eyes or he's in contacts. So we have been here -- you've given us a great gift tonight my friend because April, Mr. Preston, and Mr. Name and I -- I gave her one name because she's more important than the other two guys. We have been listening to your panel and it allows us to process.
We hear all these great minds talking about things and we're able to kind of like synthesize. Oh that's a good point, oh this is their challenge. I get it. And I want to pick up on something that April was figuring out.
So reparations comes up and it could easily be processed as just a live wire for Democrats, be careful, you see it differently though about something that needs to be explored and discussed and owned in order to have any authenticity with the African-American community.
RYAN: Yes, you know, Marianne Williamson, I mean so many people had discredited her because she doesn't have any political experience, but tonight you know she really came in with something saying 4o acres -- 40 acres and a mule.
And if you go back in history, General Sherman during the Civil War promised the Black Union Soldiers who were slaves 40 acres and a mule. If you know the president would sign off on this military order which then President Abraham Lincoln did, but the promise was never fulfilled.
CUOMO: This is -- let's hear Marianne, shall we? Marianne Williamson tonight had said earlier in the coverage. I'm a fan of a couple of her books. She's had four bestsellers. This was the first time I ever heard her channel the voice that she often offers up in her writing. Here's what she had to say.
All right, but if we keep waiting like this, we'll think you're going to hear.
So do the impersonation?
CUOMO: So what she did -- no, no, no, I don't want to channel right now. She had too big clap back moments and honestly she did. If you were to look at an applause analysis, not that it's a relevant metric, but when she talked about Flint and how the problems of racism and economic disparity or not just synonymous --
RYAN: And she talked about infrastructure.
CUOMO: Right and that's bigger than just Flint, she really owned it in a way. By the way, it happens to be true especially in Flint. The place is still suffering and nobody cares the way they used to, it resonated.
She then talks 40 acres and a mule and the question was something about how -- what qualifies you to and she gave a do the math 40 acres and a mule which is what was promised, in current day dollars, this is what it would be. And then it becomes how do you use that money.
RYAN: And you know, it kind of in a tongue-in-cheek joking way but not necessarily joking. What does 40 acres and a mule equate to today? You know, I kind of joke say it's a house in the Potomac and a Maybach, but then you have white America, you call it a wasp America, how are you going to get that?
And I'm still living this way and you know, and that's the problem that we're dealing with in America. You're going to one-up me over a mistake or something that happened a long time ago but you have to remember this, so many other communities get apologies and get reparations yet African-Americans, the descendants of slaves have yet to receive an apology or any kind of repay, be it a direct repay or be it something or grants into the community. We've seen those grants over the years not work in urban areas.
CILLIZZA: Just one point in Marianne Williamson because when April was talking about, I was just thinking about her at both debates. In the first debate -- first of all, stylistically she's radically different than the other nine. You know, the nine on a policy perspective, they're a little bit different but stylistically she's --
[01:25:01] RYAN: But she came ready to play tonight. She came ready to play -- CUOMO: We have the sound bite. So let's contextualize it the right
way here. Here is Marianne Williamson making this point.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARIANNE WILLIAMSON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We need to recognize that when it comes to the economic gap between blacks and whites in America, it does come from a great injustice that has never been dealt with. That great injustice has had to do with the fact that there was 250 years of slavery followed by another 100 years of domestic terrorism.
What makes me qualified to say $200 to $500 billion? I'll tell you what makes me qualified. If you did the math of the 40 acres and a mule given that there was four to five million slaves at the end of the Civil War. Now, for to five -- and then we're all promised 40 acres and a mule for every family of four, if you did the math, today it would be trillions of dollars.
And I believe that anything less than $100 billion is an insult and I believe that $200 to $500 billion is politically feasible today because so many Americans realize there is an injustice that continues to form a toxicity underneath the surface.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CILLIZZA: So what's interesting about that is that argument that what we are dealing with now has a long lineage. If another candidate said that we would I think say oh yes. You know, because her tone stylistically so different in the same way that in the first debate, when she said -- I think she's right broadly about this. She said we're not going to beat Donald Trump with a bunch of policy plans.
CUOMO: She's right.
CILLIZZA: I think that that is right. And if Bernie Sanders had said it or Elizabeth Warren or Kamala Harris or Joe Biden, I think there'd be more head --
RYAN: But you know what, you're discounting -- you're discounting her because she has no political experience. But look at what we have in the White House today.
CILLIZZA: I discount -- I discount no one when Donald Trump is in the White House, but you're right.
CUOMO: Or people say we want -- don't want that mistake again in this party, and say so we want more experience. So look, I'm saying this in public for a reason. I am a fan of the books. That doesn't mean they translate into effective fiduciary responsibility as a person of the United States.
RYAN: But she changed the dynamic --
CUOMO: She's a long shot for reason. But she said some things tonight that resonated. RYAN: She was prepared tonight to come politically and make those
statements because she didn't do the girlfriend thing the last time.
CUOMO: Like she did the last time. But I tell you what, it also showed a vacuum, OK. She made a point about connecting with people in need on a passion level. She made a social justice argument. They're not making those on that stage right now. They're in this deep ass in the weeds talk about health care which may work with us, but I don't know that this is what this field of play is going to be.
MARK PRESTON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST; Well, let's look at her compared to the other nine people on the stage. She's a professional performer. She's a very smart person. She knows how to play to an audience. She knows how to hit her tones. She knows what the good story is.
I was talking to somebody who knows her really well and they said you know, this comes easy to her. She's used to being on the road in front of big crowds, OK. Now, I got to tell you. I've seen her before the debates. I've seen her after the debates. I've had discussions with her about how the debates are going to run. She has a -- she comes in with a very slow down energy. When she walks out on that stage, she flips the switch, and she comes up very hard.
Now, to the idea that Marianne Williamson is going to be elected president is absolutely ludicrous right. The idea that the United States government is going to open up its Treasury and cut checks on reparations, it's just -- it's just not going to happen. But --
RYAN: That's the same argument 22 years ago, but there's more -- you got Chuck Schumer who is in support of Cory Booker's efforts to study to commit to have a -- have a bill to put a commission on the table to see what happens with reparations.
PRESTON: April, I'm not saying that --
RYAN: The reparations issue is real.
PRESTON: I'm not saying it shouldn't be addressed in a major, major way. I'm saying that there's not going to be somebody sitting down with stroking checks. Visually it's just not going to happen.
CILLIZZA: She's interesting I think because even go back to the 2016 campaign. I think that our tendency is -- in a lot of people sense. You focus on the let's say five people who you think can win and there's some consensus. But first of all, number one to April's point, we're not always right. I give you the guy who we have in the White House.
But the other thing, there are ways in which people who probably aren't going to win or even really factor into it influence the way in which other candidates who do have a chance talk about issues. That's what I think her role will be.
CUOMO: She could be like the rabbit in the beginning of the race. But hold on, on a moral imperative level, I think reparations is a very tough issue because it's so easily mangled and distorted and turned into an us versus them thing that empowers friction when it should be fostering and understanding about a lineage of pain.
I get your point, I get Marianne's point. But she also is representative of what we're not saying there, aren't no Barack Obama in this race that I've seen to this point where he's connecting with people and giving them a reason to believe in some --
RYAN: No inspiration.
[01:29:50] CHRIS CILLIZZA, CNN POLITICS REPORTER: Buttigieg is trying that but it still feels to me -- I thought he was pretty good. We haven't talked about it but it still seems a little too rehearsed.
CUOMO: Let me get a break -- you're right. I'm just saying he gets so many points for effort --
CILLIZZA: But yes --
CUOMO: -- you've got to succeed.
Coming up we're going to take more looks at moments tonight to see what it tells us about what we're going to see and where is that clock? It's almost time for debate number two.
Let's build a (INAUDIBLE) today to figure out tomorrow or today.
COOPER: They're all still talking about Marianne Williamson.
Before the break Chris was talking about how there was no one quite bringing a Obama -- President Obama's type of politics and personality that he once brought. Pete Buttigieg to some extent maybe trying to channel some of that. Here he is tonight talking about his age.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[01:34:52] DON LEMON, CNN HOST: So Mayor Buttigieg -- you just qualified. You're 37, the youngest candidate in this field. Standing next to you is the oldest candidate Bernie Sanders at age 77. Should voters take into consideration age when choosing a presidential candidate?
PETE BUTTIGIEG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't care how old you are. I care about your vision. But I do think it matters that we have a new generation of leaders stepping up around the world. Leaders like the -- I actually think it's good that the Prime Minister of New Zealand got a lot of attention in Democratic debates. She's masterful. She is younger than I would be when I take office.
This is the kind of trend America might be leading instead of following. But only if it's actually backed by the right vision and we can have great presidents at any age.
What I will say is we need the kind of vision that's going to win. We cannot have a vision that amounts to back to normal. The only reason we got this president is that normal didn't work. We have to be ready to take on this President.
And by the way, something hasn't been talked about as much tonight. Take on his enablers in Congress. When David Duke ran for Congress, when he ran for governor, the Republican Party 20 years ago ran away from him. Today they are supporting naked racism in the White House or at best silent about it.
And if you're watching this at home and you are a Republican member of Congress considered the fact that when the sun sets on your career and they are writing your story of all the good and bad things you did in your life the thing you'll be remembered for is whether in this moment with this president you found the courage to stand up to him or you continue to put party over country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Another great answer.
GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: So how did he turned the age answer into an answer about Republicans and their, you know, their immorality which was what he was effectively saying? He's great at this.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He's very good.
BORGER: Very, very good at this.
COOPER: But Rick -- you're particularly interested in what he did not do in terms of kind of turning to whether it's the moderates or turning to the progressive wing.
SANTORUM: Look, I didn't watch the first debate so this is my first exposure to him. And I expected someone to be -- just someone in between the two who could appeal to the left but also, you know, what someone people who are more moderate could feel comfortable with. I did not get that impression.
He got as close to feeling the Bern as he could without getting burned. And that's what he came across to me tonight. He was throwing in with Warren. He wasn't going to criticize them. He was going to throw in with Sanders and Warren. He was going to sound just like he did, you know, a little tougher and I just think again just looking at the field the other people on that stage who were more moderate all flopped tonight.
There's only two to moderates other than Biden on the stage tomorrow night Gabbard and Bennet. Chances for them? Not particularly good at this point. I mean there is a huge opening for Buttigieg and in my opinion he just decided to --
(CROSSTALKING) AXELROD: There was some recognition of that because he did sort of artfully walked away from his position last week when he raised his hand to the decriminalization of the border so that to me suggests that he understands that that may end up being his lane.
I think John's point before was good which is it's not quite clear how this all is going to play out. But I think it's very likely that -- look, his chance is most likely Biden falters --
SANTORUM: Right. Yes.
AXELROD: -- there's an opening in that lane, and he is the strongest candidate to fill that opening. So I agree with you. I would not be coy about if I were him.
I also think that, you know, -- I mean I've been harping on this for sometime. I think that there is -- he did a little of it in that answer which I felt was very powerful.
This country is being divided. We talked about it yesterday. This country is being divided in a way that is destructive, that makes it difficult to get things done, that is dispiriting and exhausting.
And you know, someone -- and he has the oratorical skills and the personality to call people to something higher. And I, you know, I don't think he quite got there today.
HENDERSON: I feel like I have really no idea who Pete Buttigieg is. To me he comes across as earnest but it's sort of a practiced earnestness.
If you look at his political career when he ran for DNC, the chair he was all about red state and I can go into different places and get working class white voters, right. And he also was sort of telling the Democratic Party that they were too invested in identity politics.
And now it seems like he's moved completely to the left partly because of where the party is but he's talking like a woke white guy at times but then at times he doesn't sound as woke as somebody like Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren.
I can't figure out what he's doing.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He describes himself as --
[01:40:02] HENDERSON: He described himself as an urban mayor which I think was the first time he'd ever really done that. What's also interesting is as much as he talks about how young he is -- it's also surprising that the 37-year-old in the doesn't really understand race as well as other people in the race like Elizabeth Warren.
This also seemed sort of new to him even though he says he's from an urban area and I think that area is like 40 percent people of color.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He said the racial divide lived within him which I thought was very odd --
HENDERSON: I don't know what it means. Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- I'm assuming that he was expressing that he feels it on a daily basis but that was an odd way to put it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As you would if you're a mayor of a 40 percent minority city.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's right -- an odd way to put it.
BORGER: I think he's all about vision and not about plans. I feel like he's got these great sound bites and he speaks in full sentences and has obviously got a very big brain and he was great when he talked about his electability and how if you vote for him you're going to see a war veteran standing next to a man who pretended to be disabled rather than serve.
BORGER: I thought that was terrific. But where are his plans?
AXELROD: Gloria -- I would just say this. I worked for a guy who got elected president. Yes, we had plans but he did not get elected because of his plans.
BORGER: Well, that's right.
But he had been a senator. We kind of know a little bit more about him.
AXELROD: It doesn't always work.
COOPER: We're going to take a break. We are still going strong here even at this hour.
Coming up next, we will look ahead to the ten other candidates who're going to take the stage here in Detroit in -- wait, our current clock is done. I don't how soon -- 18 hours or so is what I'm guessing.
Oh there it is -- 18 hours 18 minutes and 30 seconds.
We'll be right back.
[01:41:51] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
CUOMO: So much has transpired and yet we are only halfway home. Only half the Democrats have made their case here in Detroit. The other half are going to take the stage later tonight. And we'll all be here.
So let's talk about it. Let's begin at the beginning. Top three tonight.
CILLIZZA: When you say later tonight it makes it feel really late, number one.
CILLIZZA: Ok. Top three. One, I thought Sanders only because I think he reclaimed -- if you are a liberal voter -- I think the anger, the fight, there's going to be some memorable lines. I wrote the damn bill, et cetera. I think that that will work for him because he was losing to Elizabeth Warren.
CUOMO: Don't belabor the explanation. Just give us the names and a little bit.
CILLIZZA: Fine. Two -- Steve Bullock because I think people know who he is after this.
CILLIZZA: Three -- a tie between Warren and Buttigieg. Was that quick enough for you?
CUOMO: Really. Yes. A little controversial.
RYAN: My win is Sanders tonight.
RYAN: My places -- Elizabeth Warren even though she says I have a plan for this. Tonight she kind of -- at the beginning she was kind of slow to jump in but when she did that clap back on Delaney, that was it.
CUOMO: Like this?
RYAN: No, no, no. Like this, just a clap back.
RYAN: Oh stop, stop.
PRESTON: I don't know. I think you know somebody that does that.
RYAN: If someone tomorrow night -- this is their clap back -- you'll probably figure it out when you see them do that.
CUOMO: So who is your MVP? RYAN: My MVP because she put it out there and she got her name out --
she was totally different from what she was that first debate is Marianne Williamson and her psychic friend.
CUOMO: Presto --
PRESTON: Hey look, I like to call myself "Presto".
So my MVP -- I'm going to leave to the end but I will say I don't think there's any losers tonight unless you were going to characterize the loser of we're not going to see in September.
CILLIZZA: Well, yes.
PRESTON: There'll be several of those people that will be in that category.
CILLIZZA: You mean Hickenlooper is not. Hickenlooper is not --
RYAN: I couldn't remember what Hickenlooper said.
PRESTON: But you will see a spike in donations for Bernie Sanders. You're going to see a spike in donations for Elizabeth Warren. I do think Pete Buttigieg is going to see a spike in donations. You're going to see some people rise up in that way.
But the MVP is us and here's the reason why.
RYAN: I like that.
PRESTON: This is an amazing, amazing thing to do. When I say us I don't mean the four of us -- I mean the guys who built the stage -- it's amazing. The camera operators that are standing on the other side here that have been here for 14 -- 15 hours today --
RYAN: That's right.
PRESTON: -- and everyone that helped make this a successful night. Despite all the anger and ridiculousness that I see on Twitter and I'm not supposed to say that but the bottom line is it was a good job tonight and I do think that the American people got something out of this.
CILLIZZA: Can I harsh (ph) on Preston's buzz and just give a loser? I'm always -- Beto O'Rourke.
CILLIZZA: Yes. Thank you Twitter. If you were him you have to show some light, you have to show some fight. You can't say we're going after Pete Buttigieg look out. Where did that happen?
CILLIZZA: He's going to -- he's already qualified for the third and fourth debates. I get it. He's going to keep going. He got enough money, he's going to keep going.
But at some point you have to show that you want to be in this and you have a reason to be in it. This is another opportunity.
CUOMO: All right. Two minutes left in the block. Tonight -- what did we learn today that we have to see played out tonight?
CILLIZZA: A prominent well-polling moderate and how he articulates his vision -- Joe Biden. Because you had a lot of now well-polling articulate moderates -- Delaney, Bullock, et cetera -- making the case against the liberal in the middle of the stage.
Well, in the middle of the stage night will be Biden the moderate frontrunner, and Harris who is not the full-fledged liberal if trying to cast herself as not the full-fledged liberal that Warren and Sanders are.
RYAN: Tomorrow night --
RYAN: Tonight. Oh gosh, yes the hours. Yes.
PRESTON: Tomorrow night.
RYAN: I know, I know, I know. Tonight -- just a few hours from now I believe that the people who really need to do something have to stand out. There's going to be a lot of ego on that stage.
[01:49:56] This is not going to be the all-white night tonight. They're going to mix it up. You've got Julian Castro, I'm hearing, that's going to do a clap back. You know, Cory Booker is saying he's going to do a clap back.
We're going to see how Kamala Harris handles, trying to navigate -- because there is blood in the water for Harris and Joe Biden. And we're going to see Joe Biden -- he's saying that he's going to give a clap back.
So I think we need to have our pop corn. We need to have our coffee and just watch it, sit back and write notes because this is going to be something to watch.
CUOMO: Last word to you sourpuss.
PRESTON: Coffee and popcorn are not necessarily when I'm eating. Coffee with popcorn is delicious.
RYAN: Yes. That's right.
PRESTON: Short term winner -- short term winner is going to be Donald Trump because he will see the Democratic Party fighting. Long term winner will be the Democratic Party because they need to go through this really hard process at this point to figure out really as a party what they stand for. Better for them to happen now than for this to happen in January or February.
RYAN: The weeding out is going to happen.
CUOMO: One thing I would like to see tonight that we didn't see tonight is that we see the Democrats start having the fight that they will have in the general. Because it isn't going to be a discussion about how do we make our health care system. That is just a guess.
All right. We're going to go to a break.
Just ahead the rest of our political team shares what they are looking for in round two of the Democratic debates here from the one and only Detroit next.
[01:51:19] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
COOPER: It's become a night when we all get a little bit punchy and guess what, we're doing it again, you know in about 18 hours.
Ten more presidential candidates -- it's going to be a fascinating night. Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Julian Castro -- just to name a few. It's -- well, what are we expecting for tomorrow?
KING: Well number one, Senator Booker has signaled he is coming after former vice president Biden pretty hard. The question as we asked earlier about other candidates tonight -- is he saying on television and then not deliver on the debate stage. We'll have to see how that plays out.
I think the biggest challenges for Biden who came down after the first debate has since stabilized. Now, does he bring passion? Does he appear sharper, a better debater? And how does the health care debate play out? It was a big factor tonight with Sanders and Warren holding their ground.
Senator Harris just came out with her plan. It's not a Bernie Sanders Medicare for all but it does take away your private employer-provided insurance. Is that where the vice president tries to turn the tables from debate one -- to pick a fight with her?
HENDERSON: And can Kamala Harris respond to an attack? We've seen her deliver an attack - whether it was against Biden or when she's in a committee hearing. But we haven't really seen her be able to really respond well to an attack. So we'll see if she can do that tomorrow.
AXELROD: Yes. And this discussion we were having earlier about this lane that might open up. She is not a fully-formulated candidate yet. She is someone who has the ability. She is, you know -- she's high on the second choice list lots of interest in her.
She has an opportunity here to flesh out her message which she needs to do but I do think Joe Biden is going to be a target. I mean when you're the front runner you're going to be the target. And you've got a lot of people who want to attack him from the left on that stage. And what we've learned and what we've seen is that that is how you get ahead in these debates. That's how you get noticed.
One thing we should say is we are sitting here we've analyzed this debate -- remember the last time we spent an awful lot of time talking about the implications of that night. By the next night the last night was forgotten.
And so we have to see this next chapter to see what the totality of the impact of these debates will be.
COOPER: David -- I will never forget this night.
BORGER: I think it's going to be interesting to see the two New Yorkers go at each other -- De Blasio and Gillibrand because this could be do or die for both of them.
SANTORUM: They're not going to go at each other.
HENDERSON: They're just going to go at everybody.
SANTORUM: And I think they'll go after Biden.
BORGER: And if they have to after each other, they will. But I think they will be very vocal there because this is it for them.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think at this point, Elizabeth Warren is two for two. And I'm interested to see if there is the same kind of consistency tomorrow night.
We saw everybody sort of deliver a same level of performance as they did the first time around so trend lines are probably going to hold. Let's see if tomorrow changes things up.
JONES: Tonight no discussion at all about criminal justice reform. I guarantee you tomorrow that will be an issue because it's the main line of attack that Cory Booker thinks he has on Biden.
But it's also an issue that has become one of the big issues of the day. And it's going to be interesting to see how they talk about criminal justice reform.
Cd1: Do you think Biden comes out attacking Booker or Harris?
JONES: I think you can and he certainly should. At this point I mean you basically have Joe Biden as pinata. You know what I mean? He's just going to be there with literally everybody coming at him.
I'll tell you what, if he can handle that much pressure and rise to the occasion it's going to -- a lot of people's concerns will go away. But he's going to be jumped on by everybody.
AXELROD: I think he will be after Harris on the --
AXELROD: -- on the health care issue because I think he sees that as a plus.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think Tulsi Gabbard is going to go after him on Iraq. Bill de Blasio is going to go after him on trade. Cory Booker's going to go after him on criminal justice reform. Kamala Harris will see if she reprises the busing racial issues. And Julian Castro is going to go after him on immigration.
So the question is because he's the pinata he is got an integrated theory of the case. He's going to be talking about the soul of America. Can he counterpunch and get to that higher level. That's the issue.
COOPER: Senator Santorum.
SANTORUM: I think Joe Biden is going to get beat up and I think it's going to take a toll on him. And the question is who is going to be there in this debate to be able to pick up those pieces.
SANTORUM: No one did it this time. Let's see if someone can do it this time.
COOPER: All right. Well, thanks for joining us -- everybody. And thanks for joining us at home or wherever you are.
We will be back very shortly for night 2 -- our coverage begins at 6:00 p.m. Eastern later today.
[01:59:54] But first an encore presentation of night one. Take a look.