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Donald Trump Defends his Statements about Hillary Clinton; Interview with Congressman Mick Mulvaney; Donald Trump's Recent Statement Compared to Policy Positions of Republican House Freedom Caucus. Aired 8-8:30a ET

Aired May 09, 2016 - 08:00   ET


[08:00:00] JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: We're following a lot of news this morning, so let's get to it.


DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I didn't get Paul Ryan. I don't know what happened.

I was blindsided a little bit.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, (R) SOUTH CAROLINA: I just don't believe that Donald Trump is a reliable conservative Republican.

TRUMP: I'm allowed to change. You need flexibility.

You have to listen to people that have chosen the nominee.

This is called the Republican Party, not called the conservative party.

Hillary hurt many women.

HILLARY CLINTON, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Some of the statements he has made I find concerning.

TRUMP: She's married to a man who got impeached.

CLINTON: He doesn't think much of women, it turns out.

TRUMP: She is playing the woman's card to the hilt. Watch how well I do with women.

BERMAN: What do independent voters think of this election? Our panel weighs in.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm actually afraid of a Donald Trump presidency.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It doesn't draw me to either of the candidates.

(END VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning. Welcome to your NEW DAY. It'd Monday, May 9th, 8:00 in the east. J.B. here, Alisyn and I over here.

Up first, a defiant Donald Trump talking to us here on NEW DAY. The presumptive GOP nominee lashing out about what he says are the media's claims of misrepresentation of his positions. So we give him an opportunity to tell you what he really means on issues that matter to you.

We also talked about whether or not it is the best bet for him to go after Hillary Clinton about being an enabler. He makes the base for why he says what he says. We're going to play it for you in just a few moments.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: OK. As you know there's also a big meeting between Donald Trump and Paul Ryan this week they will get into. On the other side, Clinton blasting Trump for being, quote, "reckless" on foreign policy, as Trump ramps up attacks on her husband and what Trump says was her role in his infidelity. We'll also hear more from our independent voter panel. How will they respond to what Trump has told thus morning?

But let's begin with CNN's Phil Mattingly. Good morning, Phil.

PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Alisyn. As you noted, just a few days away from that meeting between Donald Trump and Paul Ryan, face to face behind closed doors, and the tension is only escalating. Over the course of the weekend, Donald Trump underscoring that he was taken aback by the announcement that Paul Ryan would not endorse him at least up front, and actually issued a threat as well, or at least seemed to, saying that maybe if Paul Ryan doesn't endorse him he shouldn't be the chairman of the Republican National Convention. Take a listen.


DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't want to mention now. I will see after. I will give you a very solid answer if that happens about one minute after that happens. There's no reason to give it right now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It sounds like I know what the answer is, but you don't want to say it yet? You don't want to issue threats? You're not going to issue a public threat.

TRUMP: I don't think that's going to happen.


MATTINGLY: And Trump endorser and former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin taking it a step further, saying she would go all out to support Paul Ryan's challenger for his congressional seat. Paul Ryan obviously in a very good position at his seat in Wisconsin, 76 percent approval rating. But still, the challenge, the attacks that are there, pushing the Republican Party even further away from the unity that Donald Trump pledged.

But Trump's position is simple, guys. I've won millions of votes. The Republican Party should come to me. It should make for a very, very interesting meeting not just on the political side but also on the policy side. Donald Trump continuing to raise questions, talking about his tax proposal, saying his proposal he laid out will have to be increased at least for the rich, the baseline numbers of that. And also talking about the minimum wage, continuing to signal some sort of openness to an increase on that front. Politics, policy, even tone and tenor, guys, there's no question this is a huge meeting on Thursday. The Republican Party still trying to get their head around the fact that their presumptive nominee doesn't necessarily track with everything they want or believe in.

CUOMO: Can't always get what you want, to paraphrase the Stones.

BERMAN: Can't play that at a Trump rally, though. That's a big problem.

CUOMO: He is trying to figure out how to meld the "me" into the "we." There's no question about it. And that was the context of our interview this morning. It is a very good day to be you. You're going to get a look and a listen to Donald in a very fulsome way. Not as good a day to be me, because Donald Trump did not like that I started the interview by talking to him about why he is making so much about Hillary Clinton being an enabler when he says this campaign is supposed to be so much about policy. Why go that way? He says I have it all wrong, but then he talked about it.


TRUMP: She is playing -- she is playing the woman's card to the hilt. She is going -- I mean, I watched over the weekend everything is about woman and Donald Trump raised his voice and -- you know, it's all nonsense.

And you know what, women understand it better than anybody. And watch how well I do with women when it counts, when the election comes. Watch how well, because women want to see strong security, they want to see strong military, they want to see borders where people can't just come walking across a border like it's Swiss cheese. And you see the damage that's been done to our country with the weak borders. You see what's happening. You see the crime. You see the drugs flowing in and poisoning our youth and everybody else.

[08:05:11] CUOMO: But then why don't you talk about those issues?

TRUMP: I do.

CUOMO: And get women on your side?

TRUMP: I do.

CUOMO: -- as opposed to infidelity and enabling?

TRUMP: You took one sentence out of an hour long speech.

CUOMO: Mr. Trump, i's not one sentence. You were grandstanding on it. You were working the crowd about it.

TRUMP: Chris, I spoke very little about that compared to other things. You took a small amount of the speech and you build it up like it's the biggest thing in the world. But it is a big thing. Look, he was the worst abuser of women.

CUOMO: You just said I'm making too much of it. Now you say it's a big thing.

TRUMP: Excuse me, as a politician in the history of our country. He was impeached. He was impeached. And then he lied about it. He said nothing happened with Monica Lewinsky and then he said, sorry, folks, it actually did happen. And the guy was impeached for lying.

CUOMO: All of that can be true. What does it have to do with Hillary?

TRUMP: She can't talk about me because nobody respects women more than Donald Trump. And I'm going to take -- I will be better for women by a big factor than Hillary Clinton, who, frankly, I don't even think will be good to women.

You know, she went and she spoke -- it was very interesting. She spoke a few weeks ago and said I'm going to put the miners and the companies out of business. Then she went to West Virginia and tried to pretend she didn't make the statement. That's the way it is with her, the lies and the deception. It's horrible.

And, by the way, they understand her in West Virginia. And I'll bet you that she loses West Virginia when she was easily supposed to win. I would bet if you took a poll there now, myself compared to her, you'll see a big difference. But you watch the problems she'll have with the deception and the lies. And she tried to pretend like she didn't mean it.

CUOMO: All right, let's talk about something else. Sarah Palin came out and said Paul Ryan is done. I'm calling on the supporters of Donald Trump to go after Paul Ryan and make sure that he gets "Cantor- ed," as in Eric Cantor, that he loses his seat where he is. Do you want that? Do you want Sarah Palin going out there and trying to turn people against Paul Ryan?

TRUMP: Sarah has endorsed me. And I like her a lot. I think she's a terrific person.

CUOMO: But do you want that? Do you want Paul Ryan kicked out?

TRUMP: Let me finish what I wanted to say, OK? I have nothing to do with that. Sarah is very much a free agent. She's a terrific person but she's very much a free agent. I didn't know about this until yesterday. I guess she has been fighting or she's endorsing somebody that's running against Paul Ryan. And I didn't know about it until yesterday when I read about it.

CUOMO: But this is a big deal. Paul Ryan, the speaker there. You have said, to this point, to give you your due, hey, I want Ryan on my side. I want to work with him.

TRUMP: I'll go a step further. I've always liked him. He called me not so long ago, a number of weeks ago. But he called me and he was very supportive and very nice. I thought everything was fine. And then I got blindsided. So we'll see. I'll see what happens.

Chris, I think you know this better than anybody. The Republican Party, because of me, has received more votes than any time in its history during these primaries, right? Is that a correct statement?

CUOMO: You are on track to have gotten --

TRUMP: Is that a correct statement?

CUOMO: -- more votes than anybody in this primary.

TRUMP: I'm not even talking about me. Because of me --

CUOMO: Any GOP primary ever you've gotten the most votes.

TRUMP: Because of me you've got the highest ratings in the history of CNN during a debate, and FOX set the all-time record, 24 million and 23 million. OK, now, more importantly, most importantly from my standpoint, in the history of primaries, with many states left, it will be this weekend -- I think it might already be beat -- I've received more votes than any person ever to run in the Republican primary. So I have people that I'm representing. They're unbelievable people. They're loyal. They're smart. They're sharp. They're tired of being abused. They're tired of being lied to by people like Hillary Clinton.


CAMEROTA: All right, let's talk more about our Trump interview and the Republican Party's divide over their presumptive nominee. We want to bring in Congressman Mick Mulvaney, Republican from South Carolina and co-founder of the House of freedom caucus. He says he will support Donald Trump. Good morning, congressman.

REP. MICK MULVANEY, (R) SOUTH CAROLINA: Good morning, Alisyn. Thanks for having me.

CAMEROTA: Great to have you. So correct me if I'm wrong. You say that you will support Donald Trump because he's your party's presumptive nominee, but you're not necessarily crazy about him as a candidate?

MULVANEY: I was a Rand Paul supporter during the primaries. When Rand dropped out I didn't pick another candidate. But I'm more than happy to abide by what the Republican primary voters have said. And what they said it this year they said they want Donald Trump. And I'm fine with that and was hopeful that the whole party could rally behind Trump a little bit faster than we have.

CAMEROTA: OK, so you say you're fine with it. But let's look at his positions and you can tell me if you're fine with those.

[08:10:03] You're part of the freedom caucus, right? So you all stand for limited government, lower taxes, limited entitlements. And Donald Trump has sort of given different messages, quite frankly, about those things. For instance, Social Security, he said that he does not want to change that. Let me play for you what he said about Social Security.


TRUMP: They want to save their Social Security, which is under siege by everybody. We're going to save it, folks. And we're not going to do cuts at all. Cruz, all these guys, they want to cut the hell out of it.


CAMEROTA: OK, Congressman, no cuts to Social Security, no modifications. Are you comfortable with that?

MULVANEY: Yes. Actually, the House freedom caucus, the conservative wing of the party, doesn't stand for limiting entitlements. What we're trying to do is make sure that the program stays healthy for, for example, my 16-year-old triplets. What we've talked about doing is doing things like trying to slowly raise the retirement age from 65 now to 67 over the course of a generation or so.

CAMEROTA: And does Donald Trump stand for that?

MULVANEY: And that's what I don't know. When you play that clip, that's all the detail we have on his positions right now on Social Security. I'm sort of coming to it with an open mind, saying, OK, here is where we are. Let's sit down with Donald Trump and find out if there is any common ground between the conservative wing of the party and Mr. Trump. And let's focus on that instead of making a big deal over the stuff that we disagree about.

CAMEROTA: As a mother of twins, my hat is off to you, as a father of triplets. Wow.

OK, let's talk about taxes. OK, because, you know, the freedom caucus again was born out of the Tea Party, "Taxed Enough Already." I think a uniting force is to lower taxes. And you can forgive some journalists or even voters for not knowing exactly where Donald Trump stands on taxes. Let me play for you what he said this weekend.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You want taxes on the wealthy to go up or down?

TRUMP: They will go up a little bit. And they may go up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But they're going down in your plan. TRUMP: In my plan they're going down but by the time it's negotiated

they'll go up.


CAMEROTA: OK, so is Donald Trump for raising taxes or lowering taxes?

MULVANEY: Not clear from that clip yet. Again, we've not had a chance to sit down and talk policy with him. We are looking forward to that. But yes, I do believe everybody is taxed enough already. That's sort of how we got into this movement in 2010 in the first place.

Again, if we're looking for common ground, let's say we sit down with Trump. He says, OK, here is the deal. I've got a huge middle class tax reduction. In order to do that, we may have to raise taxes on other folks. I don't agree with that, but that's not the end of the world.

CAMEROTA: OK, but you would be comfortable supporting the Republican nominee if he had to raise taxes on the wealthy?

MULVANEY: If he can sit down and convince us that his tax reform plans, which I assume he has, are going to create economic growth for the largest number of American folks, I want to have those conversations. I happen to think that that comes from lowering taxes on everybody. If Donald Trump thinks not then I want to sit down and talk to him. But I can't dismiss him out of hand just because I don't like what I read or hear about over a weekend interview.

CAMEROTA: OK, let's talk about raising the minimum wage. Donald Trump said this weekend that he's flexible on that. So let me play it for you.


TRUMP: Taxes too high, wages too high. We're not going to be able to compete against the world. I hate to say it, but we have to leave it the way it is.

I haven't decided in terms of numbers, but I think people have to get more.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's a change from where you were in the primaries.

TRUMP: I'm allowed to change. You need flexibility.


CAMEROTA: OK, so are you comfortable that he takes a flexible stance on some things, like whether or not to raise the minimum wage or whether to keep it as is?

MULVANEY: I'll fight him on the minimum wage, there's no question, but I'm not willing to sit down to the folks who will lose their jobs if we raise the minimum wage, which is what would happen and tell them, look, this is why we had to do it. I've not a big fan of raising the minimum wage. And if you live in a state where you think that's important, you can raise the minimum wage in your state. But I'm not for raising the federal minimum wage.

And I'd love to sit down and hope, by the way, if Donald Trump is watching that he reaches out to the House freedom caucus and comes to meet with us after he meets with Mr. Ryan on Thursday because we would love to talk policy and not about other issues.

CAMEROTA: I'm familiar with what you're alluding to. So you're not comfortable with where he is on the minimum raise if he wants to raise it. And you're not sure where he stands on Social Security or taxes. So how comfortable are you with endorsing him?

MULVANEY: A friend of mine in Washington put it very, very well. He said he wasn't entirely comfortable with Donald Trump's willingness to do the right thing, but he was absolutely comfortable with Hillary Clinton's desire to do the wrong thing. So it's no longer the perfect candidate. It's no longer who you think is going to be the very, very best person. It's going to be a dualistic choice, Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton? And for me that's an easy choice.

CAMEROTA: Congressman Mulvaney, thanks so much for coming on NEW DAY to explain it to us.

MULVANEY: Thanks very much.

CAMEROTA: Let's get to Chris.

CUOMO: All right, politicians, celebrities, and billionaires all bracing for a big data dump today.

[08:15:03] The Panama papers are going to go public when a massive searchable database goes live. When it does, you will be able to find out who has been hiding their money overseas.

CAMEROTA: John Berman.

CUOMO: The 300,000 secret offshore companies exposed. The data is being leaked based on this Panama-based firm that helped set up these shell companies for decades.

BERMAN: I have my money overseas -- up in Portugal. That's how I hide my money overseas.

All right, a series of tornadoes ripping through Colorado over the weekend. Look at this picture. I thought this was CGI when I saw it. How could that possibly be real? But it was very, very real.

An EF-2 tornado hitting Colorado. Five people ended up going to the hospital to be treated right there. The plains states bracing for more from the same severe storm system today.

CAMEROTA: All right, here is some incredible video. A small plane crash landing, nose first, on to the roof of a building Sunday in Southern California. The pilot says power in the single engine piper gave out, forcing him to use the top of the one-story building in Pomona as a landing strip.

Two people on board, the 61-year-old pilot and passenger, both escaped serious injury. The pilot went to the hospital as a precaution. The FAA now investigating.

CUOMO: How awesome a move was that, by the way?

All right, late night laughs, "SNL" reviving Dana Carvey's classic, "Church Lady" to kick off Saturday's show and she finally interviewed Satan actually they spoofed Ted Cruz, the candidate John Boehner called Lucifer in the flesh.

Of course, Donald Trump also made a cameo. Check out your late night laughs.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Please welcome Satan.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can actually just call me Ted Cruz.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm terribly sorry about that. I was quoting one of your colleagues. Don't get in a bunch. John Boehner, speaker of the House.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: John is always coming up with hilarious nicknames for me, like buster or son of a gun.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I believe the phrase was Lucifer in the flesh.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I love all the books in the bible. I do, 2 Genesis 2 furious which says, and I quote, "love thy neighbor as thyself" and, like a good neighbor, state farm is there.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I am no longer Ted Cruz. I am the lord of shadows.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you sure you aren't lord of the weak chins?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're the first guy who got possessed and looks better.


BERMAN: Who is the other goat? Sidekick. Everyone needs a sidekick -- like Robin.

CAMEROTA: Every goat needs a sidekick, as we know. The "Church Lady" never age.

BERMAN: She looks great.

CAMEROTA: And her schtick never gets old.

CUOMO: Something unsettling about Dana Carvey in that role for me.


CUOMO: Always has.

CAMEROTA: Makes you uncomfortable?

CUOMO: There is a guy took on Twitter, who took that as an avatar -- they bother me for that reason.

CAMEROTA: Interesting. We'll explore that.


CUOMO: It gets to you. Doesn't it?

CAMEROTA: All right, another thing we'll explore, Donald Trump putting Bill Clinton's past in his political bulls eye. Will his words work or backfire? We have an insight from someone who knows Hillary Clinton very well. That's next.



CUOMO: All right. We're entering a new phase here. The Democrats have to figure out who their nominee is going to be. The Republicans obviously have, it seems -- although we'll see what happens at the convention. What should we be looking at and why?

If this is about Clinton versus Trump, what will the lens be that the American people look through to try to figure this all out?

Let's talk to CNN political commentator, Carl Bernstein, obviously a journalist of very high reputation for good reason and author of "A Woman In Charge: The Life Of Hillary Rodham Clinton."

Arguably, the definitive work on Clinton to date. Mr. Bernstein, thank you for joining us this morning as always.


CUOMO: Were you able to take a listen or take a read of the interview with Mr. Trump this morning?

BERNSTEIN: I watched it. I thought he was fairly incoherent through much of it and it raises many questions, both about the candidate and the press.

CUOMO: He says that that's on me, that I came hot out of the box, I didn't congratulate him and I asked him about something that is only on a small part of what he said.

BERNSTEIN: He showed himself throughout to see himself as the victim in this campaign, the victim of you, the victim of CNN, "The New York Times," the victim of Chuck Todd, on and on and on.

Look, we have a new dynamic in this campaign. We have no idea where it's going to go, and the driving dynamic is two candidates who are distrusted, disliked and even despised by a majority of the American people, according to almost every poll.

That is the definitive starting point of this campaign. What the press does, and has not done so far, is to put these two candidates, or three or four, in context of their whole lives.

We've not seen a single documentary, biographical documentary investigative on any network about the reality of Donald Trump's life, Hillary Clinton's life, Bernie Sanders' life, Cruz's life. It is an egregious failure.

CUOMO: Why is that?

BERNSTEIN: I think you have to ask the network executives. There's been precious little of it in the mainstream print press as well. It should have been done in the primaries. I suspect it's going to be done at the "Washington Post" and the "New York Times" as we move forward.

But the cable networks, the old time three big networks need to start doing the same thing. We need to know who these candidates are, what the reality of their lives.

Look, we've heard about Lyin' Ted. What about Lyin' Donald? He is spouting untruths one after another. And yes, you can call him in an interview like we just had but it doesn't stick.

The object is to put his whole life in front of people in a coherent way so that they can make smart, independent judgments based on real existing fact.

[08:25:10]The same with Hillary Clinton. We think she's the best- known woman in the world. She probably is. But most people really don't know about her whole life. They haven't read my book or other books.

We need to take what's in those books, what her record as secretary of state is, and put it into real documentaries on television, on the web, so that people can get past these factoids.

CUOMO: You know, Trump seems to be making a bet based on what you're saying also. This morning, he talked a lot of policy. You know, he chooses to blame Clinton exclusively for NAFTA obviously.

You know, Bush 41 started that, wound up being that the Clinton signed it. He's using that as a policy specific attack about her past. He was also talking about Hillary Clinton as an enabler.

Yes, Bill Clinton is the one who had the infidelities, but did you know what Hillary did? He seems to want to that redoes, that look back at who she is. Do you think that's saleable? BERNSTEIN: It depends on how it's presented, both by Trump and by the media. If there's context to it, I doubt that it's terribly saleable in terms of hurting her any more than she's already been hurt by what the real record is.

Look, she wants to turn this into a substantive campaign. If Trump allows her to do that and if the media makes that possible, she probably comes out of this thing a winner.

If Trump is allowed to be seen as benign rather than the neo-fascistic message that he began his campaign with, about immigration, about Mexicans, about Mexican rapists, et cetera, et cetera.

If he is allowed to continue to make those the issues without looking at his character, his record, he could well win this thing if he comes out of this benign, I keep using that word.

The Democrats have to show and the disaffected Republicans that he is not benign, that he is dangerous, that we've never seen anybody throwing around the kind of ignorance about real policy, who has been a nominee of a party such as Trump is doing.

Then he becomes vulnerable. But right now, he has proved himself to be the master politician of our time. He is running with it. He has been very successful with it in the primaries. Can he be successful in a general election, especially if the press does its job?

CUOMO: Have you ever seen an election that starts out with the two bigger celebrities?

BERNSTEIN: That's the whole point. These are the two biggest celebrities in the world and Donald Trump has tracked in celebrity culture in his whole life in public. Hillary is somewhat uncomfortable with it.

Again, if judgments are going to be made and the driving media is going to be drudged TMZ, social media rather than the regular mainstream and new stream press that does real reporting, Trump is the beneficiary. He is a master of this.

He has shown how good he is at it. He has made monkeys out of all of us. He has gotten more free air time for his rallies, among other things, than any candidate in history.

I think he maybe the best politician we've seen certainly in the primaries in terms of understanding the country and what the underlying tremor is in the country since Jack Kennedy.

CUOMO: Carl Bernstein, one of the best journalists there is giving us his take on what we're looking at now and how we should look going forward. Mr. Bernstein, as always pleasure having you on NEW DAY.

BERNSTEIN: Good to be here.

CUOMO: John.

BERMAN: All right, Chris, thanks so much.

Is Mother Nature bringing firefighters and evacuated residents the break they've been hoping for? We'll take you to the frontlines of that huge wildfire in Western Canada. That's next.