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CNN Tonight

The Gloves Are Off With The Midterms A Month Away; The Candidate Gave Birth On Camera; Ad Wars Heat Up As November Elections Draw Closer; Kanye West's Twitter Account Locked For Anti-Semitic Tweet. Aired 11p-12a ET

Aired October 10, 2022 - 23:00   ET




LAURA COATES, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: All right, so, I'm guessing I don't have to really remind anyone that this thing called midterm elections are about a month away.


COATES: In about a month, it's elections. A lot to see here (ph). And the gloves are officially off. Well, if they were ever actually on.

CAMEROTA: So, tonight, there was this fiery debate in Ohio between Republican J.D. Vance and Democratic Congressman Tim Ryan, and we have some of the particularly spicy moments from that to play for you.

COATES: And we've also got some interesting moments we are going to talk about in just seconds. Let's play some of those, though.

CAMEROTA: Okay. Well, first, we should bring in our smart people. mean --

COATES: No, I want to spice.


CAMEROTA: let's bring them in, okay? So, my strange work has been -- John Berman.


COATES: Am I in the wrong seat? Should I switch?

CAMEROTA: I'm not kidding.

COATES: Lean over for the love.

CAMEROTA: He stayed up late for us tonight, and you're doing "New Day" tomorrow morning.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Yeah, (INAUDIBLE) for you. I stayed up the whole time. CAMEROTA: I'm so honored.

COATES: John Berman is actually --


CAMEROTA: He is good. We are also joined by Alice Stewart. We are happy to have you here as well.


CAMEROTA: And Keith Boykin, great to have you with us.

STEWART: Let me just say I have Laura's book on a book case.

COATES: I'm not going to say anything.

STEWART: I didn't bring it here but it's on my bookcase at home.

COATES: I appreciate you. It was nice.

CAMEROTA: All right, do you, guys, want to hear what is going on in Ohio tonight?

STEWART: There is a debate.

CAMEROTA: Okay. So, I'll play you some of the sound of what these two gentlemen have just said to each other.


TIM RYAN, U.S. SENATORIAL CANDIDATE: I think the problem is when you have guys like J.D. Vance who can't stand up to anybody like just a few weeks ago in Youngstown. On the stage, Donald Trump said to J.D. Vance, all you do is kiss my butt to get my support. He said that. That is bad because that means J.D. Vance is going to do whatever he wants.

I have been a pain in the rear end to Nancy Pelosi. And if Chuck Schumer is the leader, I will be a pain in the rear end to him, too. I'm for Ohio. I don't kiss anyone's ass like him. Ohio needs as ass- kicker, not an ass-kisser.

UNKNOWN: Okay. Thank you, candidates.


CAMEROTA: So, John, ass-kissing is bad? Is that --

BERMAN: Ass-kicking is good, according to Tim Ryan. Look, he's trying to lean into his authenticity. Tim Ryan, what he has done for the beginning of this campaign is try to say, I am genuine Ohio. And J.D. Vance, he says, went to Silicone Valley here, and what he was doing right there is trying to lay that out, create that distinction. And he did, yes, have a well-rehearsed line, but all that means is he was prepared for the debate, which is probably a good idea.

STEWART: He always walk into a debate with a takeaway line. Clearly, that was his line. But the big message that both of them are trying to paint the other as -- was the elitist. You know, Ryan was trying to paint J.D. Vance as elite and Vance was trying to pain --

CAMEROTA: He was also trying to paint J.D. Vance just a Trump totty.

STEWART: And a flip flopper.

STEWART: But the reality is they're both going to paint each other in their own light, but the big issue that I think a lot of people were watching for tonight was crime. How are they going to address crime? And that was the big issue where they were really getting to the nuts and bolts of an issue that people in Ohio were really concerned with, and that is where we saw the rubber meets the road, the different approaches to have a fight -- to fight crime.

COATES: Speaking of fight, I mean, someone would call it a crime, Keith. We will play it in a second. The idea of denying that we have fair and free election. I mean, the idea of thinking about our democracy as anything other than fair and free.


Listen to this, I want your response to this, what they're saying now about election deniers and who sides with who.


RYAN: This is the crowd that J.D. is running around with. The election deniers. The extremists. That is not Ohio. That is not Rob Portman. That is not George Voinovich. That is not Sherrod Brown. That is not for us.


RYAN: He is running with an extreme element here that is very, very dangerous.

J.D. VANCE, OHIO SENATORIAL NOMINEE: First of all, Rob Portman endorsed me, of course. I find this interesting how preoccupied you are with this at a time when people can't afford groceries, people can't afford to walk down the street safely. Let us focus on the significant issues right now, Tim.



BOYKIN: People can't afford to walk down the street safely. People can't afford to go to the Capitol and be safe in this country because people are actually attacking them. And J.D. Vance not only encourage this in some sense but he actually raised money for the insurrectionists. I think Rim Ryan made that point today.

So, the idea that the Republicans are just hammering away at the crime issue, I think that Democrats -- I think Paul Begala said this earlier -- Democrats have to be more effective in responding to that.

How can you say that you are a party that is against crime when Donald Trump is your leader and you're supporting an insurrection against the United States Capitol?

STEWART: This is really easy for Republicans to address that. It is more than January 6. It is 365 days a year, not just one day of the year. And we are looking at many Democratic candidates that are soft on crime. They advocated for -- we are talking about a bail reform. We are talking about soft on crime policies. We are talking about defund the police. So democratic and --

BOYKIN: Republicans are advocating to defund the FBI because -- the Republicans love being hard on criminals when the criminals are people who look like me. When the criminals are people who look like Donald Trump, they don't seem to care about that as much. They're willing to excuse it. When it comes to people who do things like even Herschel Walker, they're willing to excuse that.

It is all about who serves the interest of the Republican Party at that moment. It can't be situational politics if you expect people to take it seriously as a party.

STEWART: Well, look at the polling numbers. Issues that are really important to the American people, whether it is immigration, whether it is inflation, whether it is the economy or whether it is crime, the top issues for voters, they trust Republicans.

CAMEROTA: Well, I think one point you're making, Alice, is that it is not democracy. I mean, when J.D. Vance says there, how can you be preoccupied or how preoccupied you are? Basically, he meant with democracy.

BERMAN: How can you be thinking about democracy all the time? Look, I also think if you listen to what Tim Ryan did, there, he did something very specific. He is trying to position himself as a sort of third political party, Ohio, the Ohio party. He's saying there are Democrats and Republicans --

COATES: The Ohio State, right?

BERMAN: The Ohio State University.

COATES: So, that makes sense.

BERMAN: You know, he referenced George Voinovich and Rob Portman who are two Republicans who did very well in Ohio, but then also Sherrod Brown, a Democrat who has done well in Ohio. He's trying to put himself as Ohio first, and he needs to do that. Why? Because Donald Trump won Ohio by eight points in 2020. So, he's going into this knowing this is a state that is leaning red, more than leaning red, it is heavily red at this point right now. So, he's got to something different than Democrats.

COATES: We are seeing this every time in Pennsylvania, too. The same notion -- the notion of outsider. Now, it is, who is Pennsylvanian and not between Fetterman and Oz. Who is that person? You laugh, but that whole comment today about who idea of who looks the part, who plays a part, who is relatable to the people of that (INAUDIBLE) this instance?

BOYKIN: Owned a mansion in New Jersey and a home in Florida, and you try to run for office in Pennsylvania. Nobody really buys that in terms of your authenticity.

The same way I don't really -- even though Herschel Walker -- I hate to go back to him again -- even though I know that he went to the University of Georgia, was a huge football star there, he has been living in Texas for the past how many years, and he comes back to Georgia just because Donald Trump wanted him to run for office there.

I mean, the big problem here again is Donald Trump. Donald Trump recruited J.D. Vance. Donald Trump recruited Herschel Walker. Donald Trump recruited Dr. Oz. Donald Trump recruited all these people, Blake Masters, all these people because he wanted these elections deniers, people who supported him, instead of what was best for the Republican Party.

And the Republican Party, I think -- Alice may or may not agree with me -- I think they are regretting that to a certain extent.

STEWART: I know you're preoccupied with democracy.

CAMEROTA: Let me go on that thing.

STEWART: I agree with Keith Boykin., everything you said.


COATES: That's the end of the segment. That's it. We're done.

STEWART: Because Donald Trump did self-appoint and put his name behind and push and fundraise for and really endorse candidates that were not only election deniers, they were conspiracy theorists and they were people who are far-right, even the Republican Party, and they had a huge uphill battle, what was the Midas Trump of -- Midas touch of Trump for the primary is an anchor for the general election.


All of them had an uphill battle. You're completely correct in terms of distancing themselves from those policies and becoming more moderate for the general election.

COATES: I'm waiting for the but --

STEWART: There is no but because, I have said this for a long time, they are very far right for the primary, it's an uphill battle, but they have -- but -- (LAUGHTER)

BERMAN: Sooner or later!

STEWART: They have made progress in moderating to the middle. Still an uphill battle. Many of these states, strategically, they are in a dead heat.

BOYKIN: Ohio shouldn't be a dead heat.

BERMAN: Ohio is a lot closer than it should be for the Republicans right now and part of that is candidates.

CAMEROTA: Yeah. Okay, friends, thank you.

COATES: We want to hear from you all, but also people out there, because we got a lot more to talk about, and we want to hear what you think tonight as well, everything from crime to what we are talking about today to Republicans rallying around Herschel Walker. We still haven't got to the Kanye Twitter account.

CAMEROTA: We haven't even talked about it yet. So, you can find us somewhere. All right, also, straight out of the Twitter verse, we have a viewer already weighing in on the Herschel Walker controversy. This is from Mike Higbee. He tweets, the GOP is the party of win it at all costs. Unlike Dems, they never hold their candidates to any standards. Al Franken, Katie Hill are two recent examples.

I think that kind of echoes what Paul Begala was saying, that Democrats do that better than Republicans do it. Do you agree? They hold people --

BOYKIN: Democrats never --

CAMEROTA: No, that Democrats --

BOYKIN: I think --

BERMAN: I think they're saying they do --


CAMEROTA: Democrats hold them to -- like Al Franken.


CAMEROTA: John Berman is the Twitter whisperer. The GOP is the party of win at all costs. Okay.

COATES: It is funny because that has been part of the conversation. The idea is, remember, there was this conversation a couple of years ago about Democrats and Republicans in the moral high ground, battling to figure out who was afraid to lose. When it was our chance, we didn't do X, Y and Z. Is that still a battle nowadays, the moral high ground, or it that gone? What is it? BERMAN: Well, it is not in Georgia. I mean, the moral high ground right now is not in Georgia with Herschel Walker because were it to be the high ground, Rick Scott and Tom Cotton won't be going there tomorrow. Is it today? I've lost track of time. They are there on Tuesday, whether that is tomorrow or today.

And democrats, what's interesting -- I think a good question is, would Democrats do it again? Would they do Al Franken again? I don't know the answer to that question because you talked a lot of Democrats and they regret.

CAMEROTA: There is remorse. Absolutely.

STEWART: I do think that Herschel just happens to be the case du jour of someone who is a flawed candidate, who is in a very tight race, and if he was behind by 10 points, I guarantee you, we wouldn't even be talking about this. But the fact is it's a dead heat and this is a red state. In Georgia, my home state, Democrats are going full board at all costs to make sure they highlight his past instead of what he is planning to do for the future of the people of Georgia.

BOYKIN: And one of the points, they already lost the state to Joe Biden in 2020, and they lost the two Senate seats to Democrats in this red state. So, they are already feeling badly because they were listening to Donald Trump. If it hadn't been for Donald Trump making himself the center of attention, they might still hold Georgia and the Senate.


COATES: Keep the comments coming on tweets for Alisyn Camerota or Laura Coats. We want to hear from you.

CAMEROTA: Okay, stick around, everybody. Next, I'm going to talk to the candidate who actually gave birth in her campaign ad. It's the best campaign ad you've ever seen.

COATES: It is.


CAMEROTA: It is so -- I have so many questions for her. And how did she look so good in labor? So many questions. We will be right back.




CAMEROTA: With the midterms looming, the campaigns are getting personal. Really personal. A congressional candidate in Louisiana gives birth to a baby in her new campaign ad.


UNKNOWN: My husband and daughter help take care of the chickens. And there's someone else who's going to be joining us, and helping with the farm life very soon. But, these days, I worry about storms that are stronger and more frequent because of climate change, about our kids, underperforming public schools, and about Louisiana's new abortion ban, one of the strictest and most severe in the country.

We should be putting pregnant women at ease, not putting their lives at risk. I haven't spent my career in Washington. I've worked my way up from bartender to CEO. Now, I help nurses, organize complicated health records, because nurses aren't just heroes, they are saints.

Louisiana deserves better than the path we're on. I am Katie Darling, and I'm running for Congress because I want that better path for you, for her, and for him.


CAMEROTA: And Katie Darling joins us now. She's a Democratic candidate running for Congress in Louisiana. Katie, that is the most remarkable campaign ad I've ever seen. How did you do that?

KATIE DARLING, LOUISIANA HOUSE CANDIDATE: Well, it was a pretty natural process. Thank you so much. I am really proud of it.

CAMEROTA: But how did you get the idea? Whose idea was it to say, you know what, you should do -- you should give birth in your campaign ad?


Did you say that or is it a campaign manager? How did that happen?

DARLING: Well, my pregnancy is what ultimately got me into the race. So, as we were deciding how to introduce me as a candidate and how to share my story, it was a natural evolution of what was happening in my life. And so, I did work with a couple of talented folks to put it together. But it was just really organic, what was happening in my life at the time. And the purpose of my campaign was to share that story of being pregnant in Louisiana right now.

CAMEROTA: I mean, it's so well done because it actually -- you know, you don't really know until the reveal at the end where you have your newborn in your arms that that's all real, that that was all actually happening. Who was taping this?

DARLING: We had two cinematographers from Louisiana that worked with us on capturing that moment.

CAMEROTA: I promise I'm going to get to the issue that you want to talk about in one minute, but how did you look so good in labor?

DARLING: Did I? It was all a blur. In the moment, that's just how I look when I gave birth. There was no makeup, no hair. That's just me.

CAMEROTA: It's remarkable. And so, Katie, tell us the larger point here. I mean, tell us what, you know, family planning means in Louisiana and what the abortion issue has done to your state.

DARLING: Well, I was seven months pregnant when Roe v. Wade was overturned. And there was a trigger of abortion ban that went into effect immediately. And I became terrified of what could happen to me if I had a complication during my pregnancy and during my birth. I had a high-risk pregnancy.

And my first instinct was to move out of state. But I recognize that not everybody can do that. And that is why I chose to get in this congressional race and to make sure that reproductive rights are available for all people in our country.

So, folks at Louisiana are currently dealing with this complicated abortion ban and legislation that is very confusing, that is criminalizing women, pregnant people, and doctors. It is very problematic and it's putting people in harm's way.

CAMEROTA: Well, I can't imagine a better way to get people's attention than to give birth on camera and to run for office simultaneously. So, Katie Darling, thank you very much for sharing your story with us and for letting us play that ad. Really interesting to see that tactic, and that you were able to pull it off. So, thanks for your time tonight. And you have a newborn. So, thanks so much.

DARLING: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Thank you.

COATES: So, I am no longer going to say, I woke up like this. I'll say, I gave birth like this.

CAMEROTA: How did she -- she was in labor during that campaign ad.

COATES: In labor.

CAMEROTA: And she made it look easier than I remember it being.

COATES: Oh, I had two C-sections. I don't know. I had epidural. I was fine. But when I look at these issues and I say, it got your attention. And then it was, look, I was seven months pregnant, she said, when Roe v. Wade was overturned.

We're talking about a lot of people now making decisions to run for office. Very close in time because the urgency -- by the way, that is one ad, but the ad wars are actually heating up as we get closer and closer to the midterms.

But some of the ads maybe more effective than others. We want to look at those next.

CAMEROTA: With our panelists who are standing by.




COATES: So, time is starting to run out for candidates in those very tight midterm races to really win over their voters. And the best way to do it, some find the campaign ads. But they're blasting them all over the airways. Some of them are personal. Some of them are a little bit cheeky. Some of them are pulling out the knives. Some are just giving birth.

CAMEROTA: Some are getting birth.

COATES: But what is it that is going to take to have voters really change their mind now? We are five weeks away. We are back now with John Berman, Alice Stewart, Keith Boykin. Can we first talk about your interview?

CAMEROTA: I will never get over that campaign ad. John, have you ever seen anything like it?

BERMAN: Well, we had twins, right? I was there when the twins were born. So, I have seen something like it.

CAMEROTA: Well, have you tried to turn it into an?

BERMAN: I might turn it into years of therapy. Listen, because of -- all I can think about as that was happening was what if the director and the cinematographer said, you know, I don't like that take?

COATES: Yeah, let's do that again.

BERMAN: Let's do that again, right there.

CAMEROTA: It was incredible. So effective, I thought.

COATES: While watching all of you watch it as well, we are all kind if like, oh, this is happening.

STEWART: One thing she could say none of the male politicians have done in a campaign ad.

COATES: That's right.

STEWART: She can claim that.

CAMEROTA: Yes, so, what makes an effective ad?

STEWART: Clearly, a personal story. That is a very personal story. And a compelling message. And certainly, a message that connects with the people. You know, you could sit there and talk about numbers and polls and stats and figures and dollars and cents, but it is a personal story that really is able to resonate with the people.


And at the end of the day, I've been on many presidential campaigns, you could check all the boxes of all of the things that you need to do to run to office, bur if you don't connect with the people, they are not going to support you. So, your ads really need to really connect on a personal level, and let's just say she really did that.

CAMEROTA: Mission accomplished.

COATES: But sometimes that connection as we see, by the way, it's interesting that people want to turn away and think it is too personal to have that birth on screen, but then decide people's personal decisions in that same context in politics.

What's interesting about this is sometimes, what the connection is, they want to appeal to the visceral. They want appeal to the -- stick it to the other person, that anger, that sort of sentiment.

BOYKIN: Anger can be an effective way to reach people in an ad, too. But I think the more effective ads are actually the ones that deal with some sense of authenticity. I thought that was a very authentic ad, and just to show your personal experience and to relate to the story that -- it's a very political story, national story, but to take it in a very local, granular level, and talk about how it affects you.

Very similarly, I think Raphael Warnock makes some amazing campaign ads. They're humorous, they're self-deprecating, but they're also focused on the issues.

CAMEROTA: Before we get to that, let me just play one for Ron DeSantis because I think that he's doing what you're talking about, what we're all talking about, by using his wife. Some people would say that Ron DeSantis could be humanized on some level and his wife does that.

COATES: Do you have a robot?

CAMEROTA: No, I was trying to -- I will rephrase that. But his wife, I think, does that. Here it is.


CASEY DESANTIS, WIFE OF RON DESANTIS: If you want to know who Ron DeSantis really is, when I was diagnosed with cancer, and I was facing a battle for my life, he was the dad who took care of my children when I couldn't. He was there to pick me off of the ground when I literally could not stand. He was there to fight for me when I didn't have the strength to fight for myself. That is who Ron DeSantis is.


CAMEROTA: It's also highly personal.

BOYKIN: Can I say something about that? I mean, I feels it's a very emotional ad, and I don't want to say anything to disparage that experience. But at the same time, I find that had incredibly problematic.


BOYKIN: Because what it does is -- everything that she is saying is counterintuitive to who Ron DeSantis is as a leader. Yes, you can be kind and compassionate to your wife, to your friends, to your family, but can you do it to the people from your state, the people who are vulnerable, the people who you are shipping out or actually going to another state and flying them to Massachusetts? What kind of compassionate person is that?

So, yeah, I don't give a damn. You can just sit and help your family if you're not able to do that for the rest of the people in your community, in your state. That's your job as a leader. Yes, you're good human being perhaps with your family, but be a good leader for your state, not just for your family. That's hypocritical to me.

STEWART: If you've seen anything of hurricane Ian, you've seen Ron DeSantis at his best, appealing to the people, making sure their needs were met, making sure that they have -- the needs are met, meeting with President Biden, getting the federal assistance, making sure they have housing and food and clothing. He is very compassionate and very aware.

BOYKIN: I agree.

STEWART: In terms of the immigrants that he sent elsewhere, he did that because he was overwhelmed in the state of Florida --

BOYKIN: But how is he overrun by immigrants in Texas? He went to Texas and took immigrants from Texas, to Florida, to Massachusetts.

CAMEROTA: Was that effective or --

BERMAN: I think you hit it on the head when you introduced it, which is that, if you read profiles like this, a New Yorker profile of Ron DeSantis, he has a problem connecting on a personal level with other people, including people who seem to be as friends.

So, this was an effort to humanize him. I mean, this is something the campaign clearly saw that was a need that needed to be filled and this is how they chose to do. It's a very emotional ad. It's a very memorable ad to be sure, which is what you want. You want an to be memorabl. You want an ad to played on TV for free like this, and you also wanted it to be shared online and on Twitter and whatnot. I think it works in that sense.

CAMEROTA: Yeah, I agree. We've had two examples here of very intimate family experience in a campaign ad. So, when we come back, we are going to talk about Kanye West, his anti-semitic tweets.

COATES: I heard Keith Boykin just go, oh.


CAMEROTA: Yeah. You're not leaving. You're not going around.

BERMAN: I could say, oy.


CAMEROTA: And why his Twitter accounts are now locked. You can imagine.

COATES: And we want to know what you think about it. So, here is a tweet from Jenni. It says, Kanye needs to go to the Holocaust museum followed by the museum of African American history.


Then he needs to stop posting/talking and just listen to people for a while.

Send us your thoughts to @alisyncamerota or @thelauracoates.

CAMEROTA: And I still telling you more about Kanye West?

COATES: We are going to tell you more about it.

CAMEROTA: Okay, I'll tell you as soon as we come back.






CAMEROTA: Kanye West showed up last week at his Paris fashion show wearing a t-shirt with "white lives matter" written in huge font on his back. And days later, he tweeted, and I'm quoting here, "Going death con 3 on Jewish people. You guys have toyed with me and tried to black ball anyone who ever opposes your agenda" -- end quote.

Kanye's Twitter account is now locked for the anti-semitic tweet.

Back with us to talk about this is John Berman, Alice Stewart, and Keith Boykin. So, John, Kanye has spoken about having mental illness. I mean, he has talked about having bipolar disorder. And he has said that in his manic mode, he becomes hyper-paranoid. And he has the described himself as thinking that everything is a conspiracy. Are we supposed to take that into consideration when he says repugnant things like that?

BERMAN: You can have mental illness and be anti-semitic. And I think that you need to call that what it is, which is just pure antisemitism. It is antisemitism 101. I was on the panel where a professor said, we shouldn't even call it antisemitism, we should call it Jew hating, because antisemitism somehow desensitizes it.

That is classic Jew hating, going back to conspiracies, the types of conspiracies that people have spun for centuries. You know, you people have undermined me for so long. You are controlling things and pulling strings. That is what it is.

What is motivating it, to me, is less interesting and less important than acknowledging what he just did in public for everybody to see. I know there is a debate about whether Twitter should de-platform.

I don't care what Twitter does. I care that he said this. That someone who is this high-profile, with these many people who are looking at him, felt it was okay to say something so blatant in front of the whole world. Whether you did it out loud or whether you did it on Twitter is not important to me.

STEWART: When you hear people say things like this, you wonder, is it because they are uninformed about what happened with holocaust or are they just anti-semitic? I agree with the person that tweeted into the show. He needs to go to the holocaust museum. He needs to take a history lesson on what happened, and the atrocities that happened to the Jewish people during that time period. And he also might want to go to the African-American history museum and learn a little bit about that.

Here is the thing that I find astonishing in the last week. He has not only offended Jewish people, he clearly offended a lot of African- Americans when he went to a Paris fashion show with "white lives matter" sweatshirt. They were very frustrated.

And here is a man who is a businessman who makes a lot of money off of his rap music and selling clothes, and he is taking a huge financial hit by pissing off every single entity he possibly can. So, you wonder, what is the motive? What is his endgame other than certainly getting people t talk about him, but he is losing a lot of business, he is no longer on social media, and he certainly --

COATES: Not really informed, though. He was on -- after part of this, not the anti-semitic tweet, but he had an audience for about an hour, Tucker Carlson, extraordinarily high-rated show. I do struggle on this.

I'm going to say why I'm a little bit quiet here. I struggle with acknowledging a provocateur. I do. And it is extraordinarily important to continue to address what ought to be obvious, which is I don't buy anyone who tells me they are not educated about the holocaust or they are not educated about antisemitism, they are not educated about bigotry.

I think people make a choice to be a bigot or not. And being bipolar does not make you a bigot. But the idea of addressing the provocateur feels -- I am almost torn. Do you feel that way, Keith?

BOYKIN: I feel exactly the same way. I've been dreading this conversation all night because I feel like this is exactly what Kanye wants. He wants us to be talking about him. And to a certain extent, even if it is bad news, it still gets him the attention that he wants.

And Kanye West is that provocateur. He knows what he is doing is wrong. It doesn't matter if he has mental health issues or not. He knows that antisemitism is wrong. He knows that preaching anti- blackness is wrong, when he talks about "white lives matter." He also said that slavery was a choice.

Kanye West was the one -- Black people embraced him years ago because he talked about George Bush during hurricane Katrina. But I wonder if he even believed that. I wonder if that was just a part of his stick again, a part of his effort to just sort of be the provocateur all the time.

And Kanye West is somebody who, unfortunately, I think the Republican Party was starting to embrace just a week ago. They liked him a week ago until he went off of the deep end again.

STEWART: They liked him ever since he liked Trump.


BOYKIN: Exactly.

STEWART: He went to the White House to see Trump. The fascination with him and giving him an hour of television on another network, I don't understand that. But clearly, I don't feel as though someone with such anti-semitic, anti -- you know, African-American views deserves the kind of attention that he is getting. But clearly, he is getting it.

COATES: We are going to see a lot more about who gets attention on the Twitter platform. I see maybe there's a new sheriff in town overseeing who's going to be back on or not. We will see about that.

Coming up, I want to hear from you all. It is time for you to send off. I know you have opinions out there. What is your take on the best response to Kanye West? Just direct your thoughts to @alisyncamerota or @thelauracoates. We will hear them in just a moment. Here is the hashtag, #CNNSoundOff.

CAMEROTA: And really, you can tell us anything. Doesn't even have to just be about Kanye.





CAMEROTA: Okay, it's time to hear your thoughts on tonight's topics live and unscripted until -- what do we have?

COATES: What could be possible -- here's Pandora's box, everyone. I can't wait to get Republicans back in office to restore our economy and safety. Period.

CAMEROTA: I like it. It's succinct. I like it. Right to the point. That's how you should tweet.

COATES: Other one was, let's see here, this is a response to Herschel Walker. Republicans are supporting Herschel Walker because he's easy to manipulate. That was -- I think it is Alice, not the one at our table who said that. Then you got also, so Herschel Walker has a scandal, lies about it and raises campaign donations. Trump gets searched by the FBI, has stolen documents seized and gets millions in donations. This is the GOP business model.

CAMEROTA: Okay, stop right there. Alice, that is the GOP business model. Because Trump showed them how to do that. The more scandal, then there's more money raised.

STEWART: Yes. Whenever the FBI -- every time there was a new development with Mar-a-Lago, my inbox would get filled with four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10 email fundraising solicitations from Trump because he portrayed himself as the victim, and they were on a witch hunt and there was prosecutorial misconduct, they were going after him, that's the way he perceived it, he was the victim, and people bought into it and gave money.

CAMEROTA: And Herschel Walker is doing the same thing.

STEWART: And Herschel Walker is doing the same thing.

BERMAN: I think we talked about this at another show that we may have been on together, Alice. My question is, is Donald Trump a unicorn here? Is Donald Trump the only one who can get away with what he did and get elected? I don't know the answer to that. I think we are going to learn.

Can Herschel Walker pull off what Donald Trump pulled off after Access Hollywood, after Trump university, after everything? The list goes on and on and on. Trump didn't. But I just don't. I don't know if others can do it, too.

STEWART: What we saw with Trump, whenever there was the Access Hollywood or any of these other scandals that came up, he did the same playbook. Deny, deflect, and demean those that accused him of these things. Herschel Walker is doing the same thing.

CAMEROTA: Except Donald Trump did it faster. Herschel Walker had a few days of incomprehensive conversations where he was sort of apologizing, but we do know to whom.


CAMEROTA: But Donald Trump just by -- by his nature, immediately deflects, denies.

COATES: He was defiant. That's why we are asking of him to (ph) have more of a Trumpian response, talking about Herschel Walker. But the idea of trying to (INAUDIBLE) phenomenon, part of it, and Paul Begala was talking about this today, about his perception that people feel that Democrats are elitist, part of that conversation is, people not wanting to be told how to think or feel.

I think it's not a reaction to the PC movement about -- I don't know why there is visual hateful reactions of it (INAUDIBLE) to say, but this idea of, I don't want you to tell me who I think is a good candidate or not. I meant as much part of the Herschel Walker conversation than anything else. BOYKIN: I don't think it's just about people dictating who you should or should not like. It is about the hypocrisy of the party that calls itself the party of family values, the party of pro-life, the party of protecting the traditional values.

Then you have Herschel Walker as your candidate, and he is -- apparently, if the allegations are true, antithetical to all those different things, and he goes on to say, well, I believe in redemption. Well, how can you have redemption if you haven't acknowledged you've done anything wrong?

BERMAN: Right.

STEWART: This goes back to what Mitch McConnell talked about. The question of candidate quality in many of these races. We can go back to the primary if we could redo the primaries. We might have different candidates at this point. But right now, for Republicans, it's a binary choice between Herschel Walker and the --

CAMEROTA: And he might still win. I know you're talking about that. He might still win.

STEWART: Right. And polls right now in Georgia have it tied at 45 apiece. Herschel's campaign is back in the field this week. We will see how the numbers play out later on. But they are going to be full speed ahead and top name Republicans are going to Georgia to really show the binary choice between Hershel's policies and Warnock.

COATES: We had another tweet, though, on the topic of Kanye West. I want to leave this out in the conversation. It comes in and it says -- the question we posed using the #CNNSoundOff was, what do you think the appropriate response ought to be to Kanye West? One person said, the man needs family intervention and they should be providing it. The alt-right media should stop using him as a tool. And the rest of us ought to give a confused and challenged man a break. But not a break to the shameless media that exploit him.

Berman, do you think he deserves a break?

BERMAN: I think that was like forfeits, right? I think the last part right there is the wrong thing. Sure, yes, the family should have an intervention. Yes, the alt-right media should stop defying him. But you have to call this out.


There's no excuse for it. If there is mental illness -- I'm not a doctor, I'm not going to diagnose it -- then, yes, he should get help. But that's not an excuse for saying hateful things. And when someone who has the profile of Kanye West, you need to acknowledge. It is dangerous not to. It becomes ingrained in our society. It becomes okay to say things like that.

BOYKIN: Then maybe the solution is actually to de-platform people like that. I mean, we saw -- CAMEROTA: He has something like 31 million followers. So, to your point, just stamp it out. You have to de-platform if you have 31 followers. We have two seconds.

STEWART: We talked so much big picture about what he is talking about. For him to say, when I wake up, I'm going death con 3 on Jewish people. Before anything else, I actually can't be anti-semitic because Black people are also Jews as well. This is not acceptable.

CAMEROTA: I think on that note, we can all agree. But before we go, we do want to say congratulations to Keith. He's got a new book out this week called "Quitting: Why I Left My Job to Live a life of Freedom."

BERMAN: I got to read this one.

CAMEROTA: I have to read it, too.


COATES: Looked very relaxed.

STEWART: It has a great cover photo.

BOYKIN: Thank you.

COATES: That's not quite quitting. That is just quitting.

BOYKIN: I love it. Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Guys, thank you. Thanks so much for being with us on our inaugural show here. Great to have you, guys. And thanks so much for watching.

COATES: Our coverage continues.