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CNN Tonight

No Shortage Of Legal Trouble For Former President Trump; Experts Have The Silhouette Of Who Will Win; Voters' Pulse Are Palpable; It's OK To Be Not So Perfect; Governor Phil Scott Is OK With 58 Degrees. Aired 10-11p ET

Aired October 19, 2022 - 22:00   ET



JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: We got a lot to talk to him about in terms of education, his passion and the many issues facing school, students, parents, teachers today. COVID, book banning, affirmative Action in college Admissions that's being debated in front of the Supreme Court. That's tomorrow at 9 Eastern.

Our coverage now continues with the rad Laura Coates and the totally awesome Alisyn Camerota. Hey, Laura. Hey, Alisyn.


LAURA COATES, CNN HOST: Hello. I think the 80s called.

CAMEROTA: Yes, the 80s.


TAPPER: Where is the theme. That was the theme. Eighties heme.

CAMEROTA: I like that a lot. Thank you, Jake.

COATES: I love it.

CAMEROTA: Thank you very much.

TAPPER: Thanks, guys.

CAMEROTA: OK. See you. Hello, everyone. This is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Alisyn Camerota.

COATES: And I'm Laura Coates. And we're now just, can you believe it, we're 20 days away from the all-important midterm elections. And with key races around the nation tightening up, especially those that will side who controls the Senate.

Now there's this question. Look, while he is not on the ballot, how much of a factor is the former President Donald Trump in how Americans will actually vote?

CAMEROTA: So, listen, there are significant developments in Donald Trump's legal troubles today. A lot is percolating right now. Here are just some of the headlines in the course of just a few hours. This is from CNN politics exclusive.

Trump considers allowing federal investigators to search Mar-a-Lago again, and then also a federal judge says that Trump signed legal documents that he knew included false voter fraud numbers.

COATES: Also, you've got Trump appearing for a deposition in the E. Jean Carroll lawsuit, and then in 2021, there is now video where Trump apparently is asking, quote, "is this a good Jewish character right here?"

I mean, Alisyn, you think about all the different things that are focusing on this former president, it's almost impossible to not think about him around this time. But the question really is going to be how people perceive all of this. Is it sort of coincidental that's all accumulating right now, or is it strategic in some way?

CAMEROTA: Or is it just all coming to a head because there have been so many different legal threads that have been out there for so many months. I mean, the E. Jean Carroll won. She was launched in 2019 --


CAMEROTA: -- and he had delayed and delayed. And now finally it's coming. The judge said, no more delay tactics.

COATES: Even with the Mar-a-Lago issue. I mean, it's not as if it just popped up. When we heard about the actual search warrant being executed, it was like 18 months in the making at that point in time. And so, I'm curious to see how people think about and how they view it because the DOJ, they're kind of hands off from the Labor Day weekend on.

But a lot to talk about today with our political commentators, Maria Cardona, David Urban, and David Swerdlick. We got two Davids for the price of one.

CAMEROTA: OK. OK. We'll figure that out. We can handle that.

DAVID SWERDLICK, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: We'll both answer. We'll both answer.

COATES: You're both very pretty. Wonderful. Thank you for joining the show.

CAMEROTA: OK, so here's my -- here's my first question. So, as we said, a lot percolating. So, between, let's just -- let's try to narrow it down. The E. Jean Carroll deposition happened today. We don't exactly know. We, in fact, we don't know at all what Donald Trump said. We don't even know if he pleaded the fifth. We have no idea what happened in there.

And then there's this federal judge who basically says that Donald Trump made false statements about he knew that there wasn't the amount of fraud, and he said it in court.

That sounds serious, David. So, do we know of all of these different things that are percolating, which have the most legal jeopardy?

SWERDLICK: First of all, if we're sticking with the 80s theme, we wouldn't be called studly.

CAMEROTA: That's right. That is right.

SWERDLICK In terms -- in terms of --


COATES: In this show for now on.

SWERDLICK: -- this judge's opinion coming forth today. Here's the thing, Alisyn. There's a difference between saying something on the campaign trail, saying something in the White House briefing room and saying something to a court, to a judge in a legal filing.

And this judge is basically saying, look, whatever else you said or are saying before in front of the cameras when you talk to the court, you must be truthful. Now whether or not it's found that the president was speaking knowingly, falsely, or he was just touting his normal election, denialism remains to be seen and remains to be seen if this can be proven in court.

But that is what is at stake here. There's a different standard between court documents and just, hey, I'm on television talking.

COATES: I mean, you got the court of the law, right, where you have this duty of candor as they call it. Then you got the court of public opinion. Then maybe you have the court of the electorate and you're laughing because he's all intersects all at once, all of a sudden.


COATES: And you do see that cumulative aspect and you know, part of the allegation is, look, you knew when you signed these documents that there wasn't the widespread fraud, that it wasn't a problem. All that lying to the camera, totally different. But in the -- in the views of the voters, I wonder how you two come out on this. I mean, is this something that's really going to persuade or have any impact?

URBAN: Well, I'm sure Maria and I will completely agree on --


URBAN: -- everything. Right? Listen, here's what I got to say about the -- all this Trump stuff, right? It is the Democrat's biggest dream to keep talking about Donald Trump and not about the economy, not about inflation, not about crime, not about any issues, right? If we throw enough Donald Trump up in the air, maybe voters won't notice we're doing a bad job and they won't kick us out, right?


That's what I think is going on right now. And if it weren't true, right, you'd see more people saying, we don't want to talk about Trump. Let's talk about the job that that we're doing for the American people. Let's talk about the issues. Let's focus on those things.

If you had something to talk about, that's what you'd talk about. If you don't, it's like you're a lawyer. If you don't have the facts, you're pounding the table, right? So, they're pounding the table here is what they're doing.

CARDONA: So, not --


COATES: Not to judge though, not the --

URBAN: No, I get it. I --

CARDONA: So here two places where my dear friend David is wrong. Number one.

URBAN: Only two.

CARDONA: Number one -- for now. Number one, he says they're throwing Trump into the mix. We're not doing anything. This is the judge. This is the gazillion number of investigations that are going on around Trump's illegality. That is not of our doing, that is of Trump's doing. So that's number one.

The second thing is if you go out on the campaign trail and you look at what the Democratic candidates are talking about, they are not talking about Trump. They are talking about these issues. But what I do think all of this does, and frankly I think it is baked into both sides of whether you're a Trump supporter, none of this is going to matter.

But where I do think it matters is there were several polls in the last month that said threats to democracy were a priority issue for these voters. So, the more that Trump is in the headlines, the more that we see he's being deposed, the more that we see a judge talking about how he knew this was fraud. We all know he knew it was fraud.

But the fact that a judge says it is going to bring to mind and have top of mind for all of these voters, how they kicked him out in 2020, and they don't want that kind of chaos. And so many of the candidates that are running now are Trump acolytes, are election deniers, and they will get the same thing if they're voted in --


COATES: But the thing is about that -- I want to hear your comment. The thing about is, it's not the first time that the American electorate has heard a judge say, there's no there, there, there's no beef. Where is it in and all these things as it relates to election deniers.

And there have been the recent poll, I think the New York Times maybe had a poll that came out just today or yesterday about the idea of, look, it might be a known quantity that people believe our democracy is in peril. But do they prioritize it over the election? I mean, the economy. Do they prioritize it over, say abortion? Do they?

SWERDLICK: No. The study I'm most familiar with is from Pew from August on the midterms, and they hit, I actually wrote it down. The issues that are at the top are things like economy, guns, crime, healthcare, voting, education. Democracy is in the mix. Voting rights is in the mix. Abortion is in the mix, but they're not at the top of that list.

URBAN: And that's of August. Try, you know, all the recent stuff. Right? It shows it's the economy, it's kitchen table issues, right? Inflation, crime.

CAMEROTA: Yes. But that --


URBAN: The things that people -- that things that people, yes.

CAMEROTA: Sure. It makes sense. Except that I do have a voter panel coming up in the next block that I look forward to you guys saying.

URBAN: Right.

CAMEROTA: And they all mention democracy.

COATES: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Maybe not as important as the kitchen table.


COATES: Thank you, Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: But they all feel it --

COATES: Because --

CAMEROTA: -- and they all bring it up.

URBAN: Yes, that's true.

CARDONA: And do you know why? Because voters are actually smart. When people say voters only care about inflation, they only care about the economy. You're dismissing the intelligence of the voting population in this country. We are able to hold more than one issue in our heads.

URBAN: Absolutely.

CARDONA: And we are able to go into the voting booth and prioritize. It doesn't mean that you're dismissing every single other issue because you only care about the economy, but you are going to think about, this person that I'm voting for, what is this going to mean for the future of our democracy?

And that means the world is specifically in these swing districts, in these -- in the Senate seats, because people understand how important of --


COATES: Secretaries of state.

CARDONA: Secretaries of state.

WATTERS: That's why -- that's why you're a panelist --


CARDONA: That's exactly --

COATES: Alisyn, on this point, because having the thumb or the pulse really of what the nation is thinking about.


COATES: But interesting enough, David, I mean, it is true that it can be that -- Carville said it's the economy is stupid. The same token, can anything really get done unless democracy is really prioritized?

URBAN: And listen, I'm not saying not there, I've seen poll after poll, right, that Americans on both sides of the aisle are fearful of where we are as a nation, right?

You have Stacey Abrams in Georgia saying, this basically the flip side of what a lot of Republicans are saying, we don't trust our elections anymore. We don't trust the polls. We don't trust these things. If we break down as a country and don't trust elections to be truthful and faithful, then democracy is in trouble.

CARDONA: That's right.

URBAN: And that's what everybody should be concerned about, whether you're Democrat or Republican.

CAMEROTA: You're right.

URBAN: And it shows up on both. It shows up amongst Republicans, as well as, you know, Democrats on the left and the right. So, where they --


CARDONA: Yes, but the different -- but there is only one party --

SWERDLICK: But David, you do have to -- right.

CARDONA: -- that focuses on election denials.


SWERDLICK: Do have to put a lot of the onus --

CARDONA: Yes. COATES: Hold on,

CARDONA: That's right.

COATES: Wait, let me hear David, I want to hear all of you. David, what was your point?

SWERDLICK: No, I was just going to say, I was going to say, I think your -- I think your point is fair, but I think you have to put the lion's share of that onus on former President Trump --

CARDONA: Exactly.

SWERDLICK: -- for stoking so much distrust in the 2020 results.


SWERDLICK: It's one thing to question them, it's one thing to pursue your legal case.



SWERDLICK: It's another thing two years later to say this whole thing was --


URBAN: Well, listen, ask me if I thought Donald Trump won or lost in 2020.


URBAN: You know?

COATES: Do you think Donald Trump won or lost in 2020?

URBAN: Yes. He lost, I mean, he lost.


SWERDLICK: But do you remember --


URBAN: By my point is, right, like if you -- most people I think deal in reality. There are subsection of people who don't.

CAMEROTA: A big --


URBAN: Listen, I don't -- I don't deny it. But listen, there is, I mean, look at, you know, our friend Stacey Abrams in Georgia, she alleges a lot of -- a lot of voter fraud -- (CROSSTALK)

SWERDLICK: But she conceded in her race, David.

URBAN: She did concede the race, but she throws up smoke and doesn't say it wasn't fair. Right? I mean, I'm not sure --


CARDONA: You can't -- you can't really compare that.

URBAN: I am comparing. Why not?

CARDONA: But you can't really compare that to a former president who instigate a coup that almost brought down our democracy.


URBAN: Is Stacey Abrams making people in Georgia feel better about their election or less about --


CARDONA: What Stacey Abrams is doing is she is making not just her followers, but Georgia voters understand the importance of having their voice heard and --


URBAN: I'm not sure -- I'm not sure --

CARDONA: -- having their vote counted.

URBAN: I'm not sure that's what she's saying now.


CARDONA: Yes, absolutely. That's -- I guarantee you that's what she's saying.

URBAN: I think she said more people disenfranchised.

CARDONA: People are disenfranchised, David.

URBAN: Look, there were people voted -- more people voted in the last election in Georgia.

CARDONA: When you have rules that keep people from voting. That's called disenfranchisement.

URBAN: OK. Listen, more people vote -- I'm just talking -- I'm dealing in facts here. More people voted --


CARDONA: As am I. URBAN: -- in the last --

SWERDLICK: Were all going to --

URBAN: OK, well let me finish. Let me finish.

CARDONA: Go ahead.

URBAN: More people voted in the last election in Georgia.


URBAN: Than ever in in history of Georgia.

CARDONA: You're right. That's exactly right.

URBAN: So, Stacey Abrams put -- show the polls. With the polls.

CARDONA: But -- no, no, that's just because more people voted, David, that the --


URBAN: That doesn't mean they're disenfranchise.

CARDONA: No, it doesn't mean that they're not disfranchised. You know what it means?


CARDONA: It means that, for example, me as a Latina voter, if I believe that I'm going to go to the polls and you're going to ask me for my I.D. and I don't have an id, I'm going to make as sure as hell that I have my I.D. That means that people are trying harder than ever to prove to the -- to the powers that be, that it is not that easy to take away their vote. That's what that means.

URBAN: So, I'm not, I still don't understand your point, but if more people show up to vote --


CARDONA: Let me explain that again.

URBAN: If they're trying to participate --

CARDONA: If there are rules that are being put in place to make it harder for a section --


URBAN: How's that harder? How is it harder to vote?

CARDONA: Hang on. For a section of voters to vote, and they know that, that means those voters are going to try --

URBAN: Maria --

SWERDLICK: If you take away everything --

CARDONA: -- everything they can.

URBAN: Hold on. Hold on, Hold on.

COATES: Wait, excuse me. Wait, excuse me, you guys, everyone --


CARDONA: To ensure that they don't (Inaudible) the vote.

COATES: Maria, everyone who is watching the show --


COATES: -- wants to hear from each of your opinions.


COATES: So, let's just make sure that I can hear you. David Swerdlick.

URBAN: So, I'm going to say this is.

CARDONA: Is that clearer?

URBAN: No. Well, I understand what you're the point you're trying to make.


URBAN: You're trying to say like, you shouldn't have an I.D. to vote, is what you're saying.

CARDONA: No. What I'm saying --


URBAN: So, I'm missing your point then.

CARDONA: What I'm saying is, is that the harder that legislators, let's talk about Georgia because there's no question that Brian Kemp has tried to make it as hard as possible to -- for people to vote that they --


URBAN: By doing what?

CARDONA: By -- by --

URBAN: Having an I.D. requirment?

CARDONA: By requiring an I.D. By requiring -- (CROSSTALK)

URBAN: So, you shouldn't have an idea to vote.

CARDONA: No, no, no. Hang on. By making less places available to go vote. And by the way, here in Washington, D.C. you don't need an I.D.

URBAN: Well --

CARDONA: Has there been massive voter fraud? No. So here's the thing.

URBAN: Well, how do you know that?

CARDONA: So, here's the thing. But hang on.


CARDONA: Because these have been the safest elections that we had in 2020.

CAMEROTA: All right.

URBAN: We have fundamental disagreement.


COATES: Alisyn --

URBAN: We have a fundamental disagreement.

COATES: Alisyn, they began by saying, my good friend one another.

URBAN: I say, listen. I said we can agree to disagree.

CAMEROTA: Absolutely.

URBAN: How'd you give an I.D. vote?

CAMEROTA: David, do you have a point. Last -- did you have a point here before we go to the break.

SWERDLICK: The only thing I want to add at this point is this. If you have a -- you can talk about Georgia, you can talk about governor, excuse me, Leader Abrams.

If you have a situation like we do now where a big chunk of one party, the Republican Party, which just hold on -- hold on.


URBAN: Listen --

SWERDLICK: Look David, I love you like a place -- but let me just get this one point out. If you have a big chunk of one party in a two- party system that is unwilling to accept that it can lose a national election, then a two-party system ceases to. URBAN: So, I just disagree with you on the big chunk. That's my point. Right. There is a chunk of the Republican Party, I can't measure it. I can't tell you. I would -- I would disagree with the big chunk part.

CAMEROTA: It's a majority. Right now --


CARDONA: It's the majority, David.

URBAN: I'm just saying the majority of the Republican Party.


CARDONA: The majority who still support Donald Trump.

CAMEROTA: I think (Inaudible) on that.

URBAN: Show me the numbers.

CAMEROTA: All right.


CAMEROTA: I will. I will. I'll take that challenge.


CAMEROTA: All right. So how are voters in Battleground states feeling about the midterms? Up next, we sit down with a group of voters to find out what issues will be driving them to the polls, our pulse of the people up next.



CAMEROTA: We're less than three weeks away from the critical midterm elections, and we wanted to check in with voters in battleground states to see what's on the top of their minds.

So, we assembled a group of Republicans and Democrats from Michigan, Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Nevada. As you'll see, these voters do not fall within party lines. In fact, some plan to vote for the opposing candidate because they think their own party's candidate is too extreme.

Here now our pulse of the people.


CAMEROTA: In a couple of sentences, if you could tell me what you think the top issue in the country is right now.

RAQUEL RILEY THOMAS, REPUBLICAN VOTER FROM GEORGIA: Well, for me, one of the top issues is school security. I have two daughters who are in school right now, and that is a big focus of mine. Being a former captain in the United States Army, it's very prevalent for me to make sure that my daughters are safe because that's what I fought for.

CHLOE HUNT, REPUBLICAN VOTER FROM PENNSYLVANIA: As a college student in Philadelphia, in an area where COVID crime has risen substantially, I'm especially concerned about being able to feel safe on campus, being able to go from class to class.

CAMEROTA: What kinds of crimes are you seeing more of?

HUNT: So, a lot more robberies with weapons on campus, we get the text alerts every single time it occurs. And across the city of Philadelphia.

LYDIA DOMINGUEZ, REPUBLICAN VOTER FROM NEVADA: We're having a lot of people that are desperate in the economy. And I see that when a lot of this city crime is coming out, people are breaking into stores, they're assaulting people. I open carry, I conceal carry in a grocery store, not because I hate people, it's because I love my children and I want to protect myself and my kids.

CAMEROTA: Show of hands, how many of you will, on some level, be voting on crime or feel that crime is a big issue in your life? OK. So, three of you feel that crime is a big issue and you all happen to be the three Republicans on our panel.

And so, my question for the three Democrats who didn't raise their hand for crime being one of their top issues, why not?


GREG CHASE, DEMOCRATIC VOTER FROM NEVADA: So, living in Nevada, I was in a role that I was leading part of the crisis response for the October 1st massacre that happened in Las Vegas, which, you know, is still the largest casualty match shooting that we've had in the country.

I'm also a Democrat. I'm also a gun owner. So, there's aspects to, you know, again, this definition of crime is a much bigger picture. You know, there's a lot of subtopics and issues that fall under crime, I think that, that we can look at.

AMY CZYZ, DEMOCRATIC VOTER FROM ARIZONA: One of the issues of why there's increased crime is we have such an incredible access to weaponry. A few years ago, I was involved with a shooting at a Big Box retailer, and we could hear gunshots, we could hear people moaning. We had no idea if one of our fellow coworkers was down. And once we were cleared by police, we actually had to walk through the victim's blood on the floor.

I mean, it was just a traumatic experience. It's something that is permeating at every grocery store, movie theater. So many private and public aspects of our life are affected by violence. And I think that's really the issue is what's going on with our society and how can we have a real conversation about being safe. LINDA LITTLE, DEMOCRATIC VOTER FROM MICHIGAN: That's what I was going

to say, Amy. We're on the same page with that. Until we have people who are willing to come to the table and have credible solutions on this issue, I don't think we'll go very far.

CAMEROTA: Let's talk about the economy. Show of hands, how many of you think that the economy is what most people will be voting on in the midterms? Two of you. OK. So, Lydia, give me your thoughts.

DOMINGUEZ: Well, I see it every day. I look at my bank account, I see what's in my wallet, and it affects me every single day. When I'm having to make decisions on, you know, if I'm going to buy milk or eggs and it -- seeing the gas prices here in Nevada are skyrocketing. And there's no reason.

We're having the Biden administration and a Federal Reserve that are just pumping money into the -- into the system, and it's just causing inflation.

HUNT: On college campuses everywhere, but particularly my own. You can see the anxiety brewing over economic decisions that students have to make every day buying textbooks, paying for college rent, and off- campus apartments, et cetera.

CZYZ: If we're actually talking about the high cost of education, the fact that wages are stagnant compared to where they were decades ago, the fact that we're having difficulty with healthcare expenses and high deductibles and can't afford medications, these are the issues that Democratic candidates are talking about.

CAMEROTA: Let's talk about abortion. How many of you, show of hands, think that abortion will be a top issue during these midterms? OK, so four of you.

CHASE: I will tell you, as a male, I do not believe it is my place, or nor should it be any male's place to tell a female what she can and cannot do with her body. I have friends who have been raped, I have friends who have been abused. And I think what frustrates me even more is we sit and we listen to Supreme Court nominees who go through the confirmation process, who, you know, say things such as Roe versus Wade has been codified.

LITTLE: Well, Greg, you need to be the spokesperson for women's rights because you're exactly right. You know, a woman should have the right to do as she will with her own body, just like men do. And you don't see a group of women trying to create laws that would prevent men from getting vasectomies or doing whatever it is they choose to do with their bodies.

DOMINGUEZ: Abortion just simply isn't a hot topic here in Nevada. It's not on the ballot. Right here in Nevada, you can have an abortion up to 24 weeks. So, it really doesn't, it's a really huge talk Democratic talking point. Abortions are being used as birth control. That's not OK.

CZYZ Do we even have the right to presume why a woman may need an abortion? Maybe it's rape or incest. Maybe it's actually that she's developed cancer. I was very late along in a pregnancy with my young daughter and found that I had abnormal cells and thank God, I was able to make it through that pregnancy and that procedure was able to take place after I was able to successfully deliver.

It's really a private matter and a medical decision that should only be happening with a doctor and the federal government or a politician is the last person on earth I would ever want in that room with me making that decision.

CAMEROTA: Chloe, I mean, as a Gen Z college student, I'm interested in your position on this.

HUNT: So, the abortion component is why I am not voting for Mastriano because he has made it his number one issue.

CAMEROTA: And Chloe, just to be clear, you are in Pennsylvania, you consider yourself a Republican, but you're not going to vote for the Republican candidate, Mastriano for governor.

HUNT: Nope. And frankly, it's really discouraging that he's made ending and restricting abortion his number one issue. The way that he describes it seems as if it is a siege on women. I would like to think that that's not the national dialogue, but Mastriano's rhetoric and the way that he's approaching it is really problematic for Republicans and Democrats alike.

And I would like to see more moderate Republicans who have solutions that do respect a woman's bodily autonomy, but also the life of the fetus. And Mastriano just isn't that.


CAMEROTA: Raquel, you're from Georgia. What do you think the Herschel Walker abortion claims, what do you think that's doing to the race, and does that matter to you?

THOMAS: Herschel Walker, I'm going to sigh on that one for a second. I -- I don't agree with any -- pretty much anything that he says. He is a man who has shown extensively that he has done some extraordinary ruthless things to his family members and to, especially like his ex- wife and, you know, choking her until she's passed -- until she's passed out. I mean, he's just, he's a violent man.

CAMEROTA: So, though you're a Republican, you would vote for Raphael Warnock, his opponent, who's a Democrat?

THOMAS: Probably so. I'm just so overwhelmed by what he has done that it just really bothers me that he has the nerve and audacity to even be on his ballot. I said it.


CAMEROTA: They're always so interesting. I learn so much every time, Laura, from talking to these voters. They give me an entirely different perspective and it was interesting for me to hear. So, the three Republicans think that crime is the number one issue.

The three Democrats, and I guess I left this on the cutting room floor for tomorrow. You'll have to tune in, think that it's democracy, that that was the number one thing that they said. But we -- we'll talk about that in part two. So, it's just a totally different perspective.

COATES: What I found fascinating was the idea, you keep hearing all these and reading all these op-eds around a different print medium and beyond in conversation social media, everywhere, about this ticket splitting. And the idea of people saying, look, I'm not just going to vote for whoever is in my party. I want to vote for the issues.

And that is a bit of a change. We're so used to and accustomed to a red state, a blue state, and purple is the shock. But you get the image here in these conversations you're having that purple as the theory of, I'm going to vote for the issues I believe in, and those who are in line with that. OK.

The fact that's a bit of a foreign concept to us these days is fascinating.

CAMEROTA: And also, people do not fit in narrow boxes.


CAMEROTA: Maybe, you know --


COATES: Because you know is gone.

CAMEROTA: Yes, you can't do that. I mean, I think that sometimes candidates think that. They do not.


CAMEROTA: OK, so we'll talk more about this. We just heard from voters take on crime, the economy, abortion. How does all of that translate to who comes out on top of the midterms. That's next.



CAMEROTA: As you just heard, crime, the economy, abortion and democracy. As you'll hear tomorrow, the top issues that voters in battleground states tell us they're focusing on for the midterms.

We're back now with Maria Cardona, David Urban and David Swerdlick.

So, it was fascinating for me to sit down with this group of battleground voters. One of the things that was fascinating was the three Democrats said that democracy and human rights were what they were voting on. The three Republicans said crime right away.

And then it turns out in the conversation that two of the Democrats were in mass shootings.

CARDONA: Yes. Yes.

CAMEROTA: They were -- they were somehow involved in mass shootings.


CAMEROTA: And so, they're traumatized from that, but yet they didn't say crime --


CAMEROTA: -- as their number one, because basically they think crime is so complicated. Is it about access to weapons?


CAMEROTA: Is it about poverty and people feeling desperate? So, they didn't -- they just labeled it differently.

CARDONA: But I loved that conversation that you had because I think it also shows another depth to the issue of crime that I don't think is being measured by all of these polls and the assumption that when people say crime, they mean the kind of crime that Republicans are pushing that is bad for Democrats.

I've talked to so many Democrats who said, you know what, yes, the issue of crime is top of -- top of mind for me because there are so many guns on the street and Republicans want to do nothing to try to curtail the number of guns on the street. And that goes to the issue of gun safety.

CAMEROTA: That's right.

CARDONA: Exactly. And that --


CAMEROTA: And that's labeled --

CARDONA: -- if that's how you call crime, that issue in that way, that's going to turn for Democrats.

COATES: Well, that's why it's really, you know, you almost call it the polar coaster. Right?


COATES: Because you can almost find a way of asking a question that leads course to water --

CARDONA: Totally.

COATES: -- and makes some drink.

CAMEROTA: Yes. COATES: And why that was illuminating is because you really had to

unpack that and that's why you think, remember that old book women are from Mars -- women are from Venus, men are from Mars.


COATES: Like different planets. You almost get the impression sometimes if people use the same basic language understanding and knew what the other was talking about --


COATES: -- we would we have more agreement on these issues?

CARDONA: It would be a different -- of course.

SWERDLICK: Yes. I mean, I think that was a really good panel. Like you said before the break, it's hard to put people in a box anymore. We've been through the Obama years, the Trump years, the pandemic lockdown. People have had time to really cogitate and think about these things.

And that's why I think what really will determine what happens in November is which party can drive their message in the way they want to drive it, so that when voters go into that booth, they're thinking about what the party wanted them to think.


SWERDLICK: As opposed to just being left with their own impressions. On the one hand, I think President Trump is a little bit of an anchor on Republicans. I don't think there's going to be a shellacking like 2010 that Obama took.


SWERDLICK: I don't know if Democrats will hold on to Congress and I think Democrats are having a problem accentuating the positive. They're playing a lot of good defenses, but I don't know that they always can tout the record.

URBAN: Well, I'll give you a preview. I'll give you a preview. Democrats are going to get shellacked based on the current trends, right? I was --


CAMEROTA: What is that look like?

CARDONA: What do you mean by that?

URBAN: I think they're going to lose the House by 20 plus seats. Right?


URBAN: Twenty to 30 seats.


URBAN: And I think you -- in the current situation, I'm just, you know, for a while there --


URBAN: -- it was kind of, you know, ebb and flow, I think 20 to 30 seats in the House safe. And I think Republicans will win the Senate. It'll be 51. I think you're going to see, you know, we'll have a runoff again in Georgia probably. And I think -- I think Herschel Walker coming on top there. And I think Republicans could control the Senate.


And David, to your point, it's about voter enthusiasm. It's not about the messaging who's going to show up on election day. Right? And earlier in -- on the network I saw Bernie Sanders on saying, I'm going to go out and try to get people fired up because the Democratic base just isn't excited.

CARDONA: That's not true though.

URBAN: Maria, I'm just saying --


CARDONA: Poll after poll that you see that that's not true.

URBAN: OK. Well, maybe my mistake. Maybe Bernie Sanders as well.

CARDONA: Let me just say this. Bernie Sanders has been wrong before, but I like that he's going out there and making sure that, that people understand how important this election is. I think you're wrong. I think that Democrats have a very good chance of keeping the Senate. I don't think that --


URBAN: What do you think on the House? Where are they going to go?

CARDONA: That if we lose the House, I think it'll be 10 to 15. Now, there's a lot of time still from now to election day. Anything can happen, but right now, here's what we're seeing. All of these national polls, I don't think that they are measuring the phenomenal incredible mobilization and energy that you see everywhere, most everywhere on this issue of abortion.

CAMEROTA: Early voting has already, I mean, early voting has people have turned.


CARDONA: So, let's talk about early voting. COATES: Early voting, Alisyn, early voting --


CARDONA: In Georgia there's --

COATES: -- the whole point as to bridge the gap --


CARDONA: Yes, there's record numbers.

COATES: To bridge the gap of your conversation. Part of early voting for strategists to understand is to gauge the enthusiasm gap.

CARDONA: Correct.

COATES: And what else has to happen. But on this point --


URBAN: But who votes early?

COATES: Well, I want to address it. People who want to have their vote counted. But the thing is, I think --


CARDONA: Historically, it's been Democrats.

COATES: My point is, I wonder with the ticket splitting and the idea that there's no more pigeonholing, and the idea of how you think about how to project the trajectory. Does that factor in to either of your points here? And the idea of if there's not going to be the straight party tickets any longer, how do you -- why do you anticipate the success?

URBAN: So, yes, I think, yes.

CARDONA: Yes, no, I think that's right. I actually think that the more -- more Republicans are going to be, are going to do tickets splitting than Democrats. It doesn't mean that Democrats won't, but I think in, in fact, if we take your panel, there were two Republicans saying they weren't going to vote for the Republican candidate. I don't know --


CAMEROTA: They were particularly extreme candidates.

CARDONA: Exact -- exactly.

CAMEROTA: But they couldn't just bring themselves.

(CROSSTALK) CARDONA: And frankly, across the board, what you see in terms of the extremism, it mostly exists on the Republican side. So, I think in terms of trying to gauge what's going to happen, what Democrats are looking at is not just these polls, but they're looking at enthusiasm on the ground. And I've talked to many campaigns, both congressional campaigns as well as Senate campaigns. And they are saying that their enthusiasm is off the charts. And in terms of early voting Georgia (Inaudible) record numbers.


URBAN: Because I'm out seeing in Pennsylvania, Florida, other places.

CARDONA: I am, too.

URBAN: But listen, I think Josh-- ticket splitting. I do believe that's going to occur. I believe Josh Shapiro is going to win as governor in Pennsylvania. And that Mehmet Oz will be the senator. I believe in Arizona Kari Lake will be governor, and Mark Kelly remains senator. Right?

So, I believe there's going to be these races that you're going to look at and say, wow, that's very curious. I'd never picked that in a million years. Right? In certain instances, because candidates do matter. And you know, Mark Kelly is a lot of Arizonans think he's a pretty moderate guy. He's a serious person.

Blake Masters hasn't really made the case, right? Kari Lake, on the other hand, you would say by all accounts is pretty far out there, but I think she still wins. So, you know, these candidates matter. Brian Kemp is going to win by a big margin in Georgia and maybe he's got enough to carry Herschel across the finish line.

So, I do say you'll see tickets splitting in certain places. Candidates do matter.

CARDONA: Candidates do matter.

URBAN: You know, you heard the young woman from college say, listen, I wish I could vote for a public, but I can't.


COATES: If only we had a magic eight ball to shake and figure out --


URBAN: It's called election day.

CARDONA: It's called Election Day.

CAMEROTA: (Inaudible) can't wait that long.

COATES: Everyone, stick around. We're going to talk more about this. It's really frankly, an obvious thing to say that no one likes making mistakes. And maybe David, who just got a lot of predictions, I wonder if he has a mistake, Adam.


CARDONA: I don't know. I don't know.

COATES: But the question is.

SWERDLICK: great for segue.

COATES: Is the pursuit of perfectionism impacting our mental. There actually might be an alternative and it's called, get this, excellencism (Ph).


COATES: We'll explain that.

CAMEROTA: She will explain.



COATES: So, here's a question for you. Do you consider yourself a perfectionist? Well, if so, Alisyn, you may have to and may want to lower your standards because according to a new piece in the Washington Post, the persistent push to be flawless can lead to negative effects on your mental health, including low self-worth, anxiety, depression, and even suicidality.

To counter this pursuit to perfection, some psychologists are now saying here's a healthy alternative. It's called excellencism (Ph).

Back again with Maria Cardona, David Urban and David Swerdlick.

CAMEROTA: He might need a new word.


URBAN: Yes. Listen. I was wrong. Alisyn, Alisyn needs to correct me. Go ahead, Alisyn. Tell me I'm wrong.

CAMEROTA: I'm so glad that you're giving me --


URBAN: I am not perfect.

CAMEROTA: -- this opportunity. Yes, you're right. You have nothing perfect even on this show thus far, David.



CAMEROTA: Sixty-six percent of Republicans do not believe that Biden is the legitimate president. That's not a small --

URBAN: I was wrong. I was wrong.

CAMEROTA: -- that you are suggesting.

SWERDLICK: I was in lion (Inaudible).

URBAN: I was wrong. I was wrong. I stand corrected.


CAMEROTA: You're embracing --

CARDONA: So next time you are better.

URBAN: See, I'm working -- I'm working for excellencism (Ph), cism, right?

COATES: That's right.

URBAN: Cism?

COATES: Excellencism. You're already better, isn't it?

CAMEROTA: Yes. Guys, guys --


URBAN: I feel better about myself.

CAMEROTA: Let tell you something, I have never been burdened by perfectionism at all. I am not burdened by or excellencism (Ph). I practice my own credo.


CAMEROTA: It's called good enough-ism. And honestly, it works like a charm. You just have to be good enough, show up and be good enough. I was telling Laura, I sometimes am invited to speak to women's groups about how to balance, you know, motherhood and work life, and women talk about this thing called mommy guilt.

They feel so bad if they didn't do something perfect for their kids. I'm like, time out. I'm like, are you giving them three square meals a day?


CAMEROTA: Or do they have a roof over their head? Do you love them? You're good.


CAMEROTA: It's good enough.

CARDONA: Yes. CAMEROTA: I really --


CARDONA: I agree.

URBAN: I didn't see anything in here about social media, right? Because I think that drives a lot of this. Right? A lot of insecurity and people and teens.


COATES: Instagram post.


URBAN: Right.

URBAN: So, people can see photos --


CARDONA: Especially for young people.

URBAN: Well, they see the lives they don't have. Right. You see fabulous cars and fabulous boats, and I'm taking a jet here. I've got this great vacation. My kids are --


CAMEROTA: And it's all a mirage anyway.

URBAN: Right. It's fake.

COATES: I don't subscribe to the good enough philosophy.


COATES: I don't. I happen, I do --


CAMEROTA: You describe the excellencism (Ph) (Inaudible) I can tell.


COATES: I do like excellencism (Ph). I didn't make up the word, but I do think also though, there is a certain amount of luxury in being able to be less than perfect.


COATES: But not everyone gets. And I think that, you know, there the standards can be very high. and I, but I also, I'll say that I think my competition is me -- is me yesterday.


COATES: And so, but I do give myself more grace as a mom, especially as the pandemic because it was 24/7 like --


COATES: -- on me attached.

CAMEROTA: For sure.

COATES: But I do think that there's something to having standards for yourself to pursue excellence.


CAMEROTA: I agree with that. But I also only compete with myself.


CAMEROTA: And I think if you only compete with yourself, you're just in a better position because then I, why are we striving for protection?

CARDONA: Yes. No, no. I completely agree with you, except for, and I -- when I do a lot of speeches to young Latinas, for example, I do tell them to be better than the person that they are competing against, and that's not just themselves because they are competing against white men. Sorry. Sorry. And they have to be better, not just better than them a little bit better. They have to be twice as good.

CAMEROTA: And is that too much stress for their mental health?

CARDONA: It might -- it might be.

SWERDLICK: It depends.

CARDONA: But it depends. Exactly. It depends on the person. It depends how driven they are. That's how I grew up. That's, you know, how I got through school. That's how I got through and you know, did my political career and have the privilege of being here at this table with you all, because I always feel like I have to be incredibly prepared.

But, to your point about being a mom, when I had children, I did say to myself, OK, I can't do everything and be everything at the same time.

CAMEROTA: Move (Ph) it all.

CARDONA: I had a wonderful husband. Have a wonderful husband. He helped me, you know, and I couldn't have done it without him, but I also said to myself, I'm going to sleep when they sleep. I don't care if the house is messy.


CARDONA: Because I can't be good --


COATES: They can't stick at the laundry basket.

CARDONA: -- if they're sick. Right.

URBAN: Listen, I don't think there's anything wrong with trying to be a better version of yourself, right?


URBAN: Everybody wants to improve. However, I do believe that you're bombarded by the media nonstop 24/7 --


URBAN: -- with messages that say you're not good enough. You're not thin enough, your skin is not great enough. Your hair is not shiny enough.

COATES: Why are you looking right at me, David?


URBAN: No, no. Listen, I'm looking at me. I'm saying -- I'm looking at a monitor. My hair is not shiny.

COATES: You are in your case.

URBAN: My hair is not shiny enough. Right? When you're bombarded nonstop, whether it's print, whether it's on social media, and I think that leads a lot insecurities in people.

CAMEROTA: Yes. Go ahead.

SWERDLICK: Yes. No, I was just going to say I like the way you put that, you're competing against yourself yesterday. I think this concept of excellencism (Ph) makes sense, but I also think it's a little bit of a rebrand. Right? You said good enough-ism, or OK-ism. There's -- don't let the, don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.


SWERDLICK: Quiet quitting is today's version of, you know, --


SWERDLICK: -- phoning it in, whatever.



CARDONA: And, and by the way, we, we actually do practice this with our kids. How many times have we said to our kids just do your best. You're not telling them, well, there are, I guess, parents who say you got to be the best around. But --


URBAN: Wait, I just thought you told those kids to be best.

CARDONA: Well, I told them, I told them to be --


URBAN: OK. Not your kids, though. There you go.

CAMEROTA: I heard it. They (Inaudible) enough.

CARDONA: It's - try to do your best because really that's all you can ask from people.

CAMEROTA: Of course.

COATES: I mean, as a prosecutor --


CAMEROTA: I agree.

COATES: -- I remember like, it was always a factor of the and prosecutors in particular were expected to be perfect.


COATES: There's never the time nor the resources to be. And you find --


CAMEROTA: That's exhausting.


COATES: So many -- I'm here, right? I mean, there's the idea of thinking about it. At the same token though, I do see the benefits in terms of mental health. It's all the individual person.

CARDONA: That's right.

COATES: If you feel as though you are striving for somebody else's definition of perfect, you're in a world to try --


URBAN: Yes. Well, zero defects in the workplace your life is just not sustainable.



SWERDLICK: And we learned that in the pandemic, if nothing else.

CAMEROTA: Yes. All right. So, what do you think about all of this? Are you a perfectionist? Has the drive for perfection ever impacted your life? Let us know what you think. That, and anything else you want to say to us about what we're talking about tonight, tweet us at the -- no, I'm not the Alisyn Camerota. I'm Alisyn Camerota and the Laura Coates.

CARDONA: You are.

COATES: You are the Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Yes. I'll go by that soon.



CAMEROTA: Vermont's Republican Governor, Phil Scott was asked at a debate last night what he does to lower his carbon footprint. As you'll hear, he's really embracing this.


UNKNOWN: Please name one individual action you have taken to lower your own carbon footprint, Governor Scott.

GOV. PHIL SCOTT (R-VT): Well, whether it's, the electrical vehicle for our state security that drives me around, but also, I'm a -- I live that. I recycle. I have solar panel. I do everything we can. We keep our heat down to 58. I mean, it's -- we do everything.


CAMEROTA: Fifty-eight, that is going --


COATES: Fifty-eight degrees.

CAMEROTA: -- above and beyond the call of environmental consciousness.

COATES: Look, Alisyn in my house is a constant battle. My husband and I hit like, I think 74 degrees is right. He's like --

CAMEROTA: I'm with you.

COATES: -- 74 degrees? He's like, woman, it is 67. And go get a sweater. And I'm like it --


COATES: It's 74 degrees. CAMEROTA: Right. I mean, 67 is I chill. Fifty-eight, --

COATES: Fifty-eight.

CAMEROTA: -- can he see his breath in words?

COATES: I'm from Minnesota, mind you, that's not, my husband will turn off.


COATES: When I'm brushing my teeth, turn off the water and I'm like, I wasn't -- wasn't done moves.

CAMEROTA: But that's the age-old marital debate --


CAMEROTA: -- of the husband, I think always wants the room colder. The wife always wants it warmer. I like a good 72, but I'm willing to settle for 71. But can you imagine living at 58 degrees?

COATES: I mean, it lives his truth, and I'll be right with you. But the hot flashes are real. So maybe it would help me at night to sleep at 50, but I'd be so cold. But you know what? The solar panels he mentioned, electric cars.



COATES: The point I think he's making is every little thing will help.


COATES: And it's hard when you're a parent to look at your kids and not start to take actions to do something that will impact their lives.

CAMEROTA: No. He's leaning in.

COATES: He is.

CAMEROTA: He's leaning in. And I think that his policies have reflected that as well. I know that he didn't vote for some big environmental thing recently, but that's because he said that they weren't giving him, that the state legislature hadn't given him the cost of it.

But I think that he's walking the walk, particularly if he's making his family live with 58.

COATES: We couldn't be married.

CAMEROTA: No. COATES: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: That's right.

COATES: That he didn't ask, so that's fine. So anyway, also polls suggesting that Republicans are actually gaining momentum ahead of the midterms. And look, if the GOP does take over Congress, I wonder if you thought about what kind of seismic changes we could actually see. And really, Alisyn, if America is ready for any of those changes.


COATES: Well, there's a new science tonight that Americans are energized about the midterms. You know, almost four million Americans have actually already voted, and that happens --


CAMEROTA: That's energized.

COATES: So far, it is. With 2018, that was the highest turnout for a midterm election in decades according to catalyst data.


CAMEROTA: So, with less than three weeks until votes are counted, our colleagues crunching the poll numbers say that Republicans are gaining momentum.