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Piers Morgan Live

Interview with Donald Trump; Interview With Jerry Springer

Aired June 01, 2011 - 21:00   ET


PIERS MORGAN, HOST: Will he or won't he? Donald Trump says he could run as an independent. The question is: is he serious? I'll ask him tonight.

And what about that pizza summit with Sarah Palin? What are they talking about?

And I'll ask him about Anthony Weiner and that TwitPic. What does Donald Trump think of it?


REP. ANTHONY WEINER (D), NEW YORK: Somebody got access to my account. That's bad. They sent a picture that makes fun of the name Weiner. I get it -- you know, touche.


MORGAN: Also tonight, the case everyone's talking about. The Casey Anthony trial. A mother charged with an unimaginable crime: murdering her own 2-year-old.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She told me that she had not seen Caylee in 31 days.


MORGAN: Who is lying? Who's telling the truth? And what really happened to Caylee?

I'll ask two people who know this case better than almost anybody else: Nancy Grace and Dan Abrams.

Also tonight, politician, journalist and the host of one of America's most outrageous TV shows, Jerry Springer talking frankly about politics, about fame, about celebrity, and about scandal.

This -- live from Hollywood -- is PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT.


MORGAN: Good evening. How does the phrase President Donald Trump sound? I suspect it sounds pretty good -- especially if you're Donald Trump. His pizza summit with Sarah Palin is putting his political aspirations firmly back in the spotlight.

Now, the big question is, will he run for president or not?

Donald Trump joins me now on the phone.

Donald, how are you?

DONALD TRUMP, CEO, TRUMP ORGANIZATION (via telephone): Hello, Piers.

MORGAN: So, tell me about pizza gate with Sarah Palin. What was going on there?

TRUMP: Well, she's a wonderful woman who I've gotten to know over the years. She called and said she was in New Jersey doing her bus tour that I've been seeing and reading about. And she said, let's get together. And she came up to the apartment.

And we then went with our families to a pizza place. She said, let's have some pizza. And we did. I guess the press saw that and went a little bit crazy.

MORGAN: Well, look, you two are the biggest box office stars in the whole race for the White House. Neither of you have declared your intentions.

What I couldn't work out is -- this is no accident -- I couldn't work out whether I should be leading in my head towards Sarah Palin trying to persuade you to run or you trying to persuade her to run.

TRUMP: Well --

MORGAN: Which was it?

TRUMP: It was a very interesting evening. I actually asked her, I said, "You know, Sarah, are you going to be running?" And I don't think she's made up her mind. I think in her own mind, she's just not sure yet.

But she's certainly got a following. And people like her. And I like her.

And she's really a woman that loves this country beyond everything. And she did mention to me that, you know, since -- and there's a whole vast array of reasons. But since I got out, nobody's bringing up some of the most important issues that I was hitting on hard.

And as you know, the day before I got out, they came out with a poll that showed I was leading the race in terms of the poll. But I sort of had some other things going along. And frankly, I was very, very disappointed with the Republicans, between what they did with lame duck -- the lame duck session was ridiculous.

They really -- I mean, Obama really made a comeback because of the Republicans. They brought $38 billion down to $30 million in cuts, and Paul Ryan's plan is absolutely outrageous in terms of not only what it represents, because, number one, it doesn't really balance the budget, but the timing of it, for him to just go and sit down and -- in that very new and powerful seat and come out with this plan that's going to, in my opinion, cause the Republicans to have a total catastrophic election.

They were going to win tremendous, tremendous numbers of seats. And now I think they have a good chance of losing tremendous numbers of seats. So --


MORGAN: I mean, what is very interesting, Donald, about this, is that today we've seen this big falloff from the Dow.

TRUMP: Sure.

MORGAN: The economy appears to be tanking again. People are talking openly about a fall into another Great Depression.

TRUMP: Right.

MORGAN: It seems to me that this is a pretty serious time for America.

TRUMP: Well, it's a serious time. And it's a very, very scary time in terms of the economics. And I'm somebody that's very good at that. And, you know, I was talking very strongly about that.

But I was talking about it from the Republican perspective, and when I was looking at the moves, whether it was the lame duck or the $38 billion, or, frankly, Paul Ryan's timing. Not even so much the plan. The plan I think is terrible, but the timing of this plan.

Why did he have to do any plan? Let Obama come out with a plan. And then criticize it or make it happen in terms of the way you want it. But for him to come out with this plan was just --

MORGAN: Can I ask you a couple of quick -- let me ask you a couple of quick questions, here, Donald, because everyone wants to know.

TRUMP: Go ahead.

MORGAN: Would you ever consider running as a running mate to Sarah Palin? Is that something you would ever consider?

TRUMP: I don't see that happening from either of our standpoints actually. And, you know, again, I'm looking at what's going to happen. And I have very much my eye open. You know, I told you about these three events and there were other events that I've seen from the Republicans. And then on top of that, as you know very well -- I mean, you're the all-time expert on "Celebrity Apprentice," NBC would be calling me on an hourly basis saying, you know, here, take whatever you want. I mean, the show, as you know, has been a tremendous success. And we had a great season this year again and they wanted me to do it. So, I did that. And now, we'll see what happens.

But I very much have an eye on -- if they pick the wrong candidate and they very well might do it, I have my eyes wide open.

MORGAN: And that would seem to me, Donald, to be saying quite clearly that if you don't like what the Republicans do in terms of their nominee, you might be very seriously tempted to stand and run as an independent.

TRUMP: And to add to that, I think the answer would be yes and also I'd have to see the economy doing very poorly, which it has a very good chance of doing. If the economy is doing poorly, and if the Republicans pick a stiff -- and they very well might -- I would absolutely have my eye open. Not that I want to do it because I love what I'm doing. I do it really well. And I love what I'm doing.

But if those two circumstances happen, I have my eye very wide open.

MORGAN: Now, let me turn to the other big story, which is this extraordinary tale of Anthony Weiner and Weiner-gate. The last time I had him on my show was in a fairly lively debate with you actually. What do you make of this?

TRUMP: Well, I was a little surprised by that debate, because, all of a sudden, he comes out of nowhere and starts going crazy. And, you know, I've known him over the years. And I learned a lot about him that night. I was absolutely shocked. I mean, he was -- I found -- to be almost unstable.

And I watched this today because I was watching between pizza- gate and Anthony Weiner-gate. I found Anthony Weiner-gate to be a terrible situation.

He obviously knows it's him. And the way he's handled it is either lying or incompetent. And either one is unacceptable. So, he's either incompetent or he's lying.

Now, it was him because otherwise he would have said, it wasn't me. You know, he's almost trying to say, I don't know it's me.

Now, who would not know that's him? Who would not know a picture in that rather terrible position was or wasn't taken? I mean, you know those things.

So, he's really -- I mean, his answers --

MORGAN: I want to get --

TRUMP: His answers -- MORGAN: We're getting into difficult territory here, Donald. I mean, would you 100 percent recognize yourself in a similar image?

TRUMP: Well, I'd know if somebody had a picture of me, you know, in that position and wearing those clothes. And I'd say, you know, yes, that's me or it's not me. And he sort of indicating that it is him and it's a pretty bad picture. Let's not kid ourselves. Then, all of a sudden, that gets sent over to some young woman who's at this point saying, oh, gee, she was surprised to get it.

I mean, I think he's handled it horribly. I think he's made what could have been a small story into a very, very big story. And then, you know, he comes out with this whole crazy excuse that he really doesn't want to go much further. It was just a joke.

I don't think that's just a joke. And I think it's pretty bad when a congressman gets hacked into.

MORGAN: Yes, I mean, he obviously gave a lengthy interview to Wolf Blitzer earlier, which when I was watching it, it seemed to raise more questions than it answered.

TRUMP: I watched a couple of those interviews. And I think they were total catastrophes for him. I think it really brings into question whether or not he can ever run for mayor of New York. And maybe whether or not he even keeps the position he's in right now. He's handled it very, very poorly.

MORGAN: Well, we've asked him to come on. Hopefully, he will, if he's watching this, open invitation.

Let me move on very quickly, Donald, to one at story I think you've probably got an interest in, which is the Schwarzenegger scandal. You know the Schwarzeneggers well. What did you make of that?

TRUMP: Well, I was very surprised. I know them both very well. And I've always thought they were a relatively happy couple. I have used the word "relatively" because I've seen many so-called happy couples only to find out the following evening, they got a divorce.

And, you know, I always thought that they had a very kind of a special relationship. And I was very surprised to see this happen. I think I was a little surprised at his choice. And I think that the whole thing is very sad actually.

MORGAN: And, finally, Mitt Romney is apparently going to be announcing that he's running for the White House tomorrow. That is the informed wisdom. What's your reaction to that?

TRUMP: Well, I don't know him at all. He seems not to resonate. And, you know, as you know, when I got out, and NBC made me an offer that at some point I couldn't refuse, knowing that I could always, you know, look over shoulders and see what happens. But when I got out, I was beating everybody, including him, in the polls. And it was sort of an interesting thing. He doesn't seem to resonate. He's been running for four years. He's been running really for six years and longer. And you would think he'd be doing a lot better in the polls than he's doing right now.

MORGAN: If he emerges, Donald, final, if he emerges as the Republican choice, as their nominee, would that make you more or less tempted to run as an independent?

TRUMP: Well, I'd have to see how he emerges. I'd have to see how it's working out. And I'd have to hear some of his opinions on very big issues. Like the fact that many, many countries, including China, South Korea, and others, are just ripping this country apart, OPEC.

Even with the big, you know, downdraft today, oil is so high. And in my opinion, this downdraft, you know, they don't talk about it, but it's caused also by OPEC and the high oil prices. We cannot continue to pay prices in the hundreds for a barrel of oil. We can't do it.

So I really think a lot of it has to do with oil. And if you remember, the last time we had the big -- the big crash, oil was up to $148 and $150 a barrel. But we're getting up there. And the same thing is happening.

So, don't underestimate the power of oil.

MORGAN: Donald Trump, as always, provocative -- thank you very much indeed for joining me.

TRUMP: Thank you very much, Piers.

MORGAN: Coming up, the case that shocked a nation and the trial that's riveted it, the murder of Caylee Anthony. Dan Abrams and Nancy Grace take you inside the courtroom as Caylee's mother faces the possibility of the death penalty.


MORGAN: I want to turn to the strange, tragic case of Caylee Anthony. She was just 2 years old when she went missing in the summer of 2008. Her body was found in December of that year in a wooded field not far from her grandparent's house. Her mother Casey is on trial for murder and could face the death penalty in a case that has electrified America -- full of charges of abuse, neglect, and lies.

Listen to this chilling testimony from Casey's brother today as he describes the smell of his sister's car. A smell other witnesses have said was like a corpse.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you recall about the smell of the car?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just that it was very potent. Very strong.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Was it an offensive smell?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you approach the car?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I had to walk by to get to the door, but otherwise not by choice.


MORGAN: And here now, two people who can explain exactly what's going on in that Florida courtroom and what happens next: Nancy Grace, the host of her own show on our sister network, HLN, and Dan Abrams, ABC News legal analyst and founder of the Web site,

Nancy, let me start with you because you've had an extraordinary run massive ratings on you show as America tunes in for the latest updates on this fascinating case. There are lots stories like this. I mean, you cover them all the time. What is it about this story that has gripped America, do you think?

NANCY GRACE, HOST, HLN'S "NANCY GRACE": Well, Piers, that's an excellent question. And a lot of people have wondered about that. And I think it boils down to something very simple.

The little girl you see on the screen, there's something about Caylee herself, her smile, her persona. We see her in video. We hear her voice.

A lot of times when children go missing, we don't have the photos or the videos to really get to know them.

And, also, Piers, I believe that when you look at tot mom, Casey Anthony, it's almost as if the mind is tricking the eye, because you hear this damning evidence about her and you look at her in court. She's a sweet-looking, petite. She looks pale and frail with her hair back in a ponytail like a cheerleader. And it's hard to take in and assimilate that what you're seeing is not what the evidence is telling you.

MORGAN: I mean, given all your experience with these kinds of things, Nancy, do you think there's much doubt that she was responsible for the death of her daughter?

GRACE: Well, in my mind, based on the evidence that I have heard, and I've still got to hear the rest. The defense may surprise me. But the fact that she lied for 31 days after her daughter goes missing and now we hear in opening statements she's saying her father is the one that disposed of his little granddaughter's body.

And by all accounts, Piers, Caylee was the love of George and Cindy's life, her grandparents. I just don't believe that her father, a former cop, dumped Caylee's body out in a makeshift pit cemetery in the woods to rot. I don't believe it. That mean she's lying. MORGAN: Dan Abrams, let me bring you in here from a legal perspective. I mean, it does seem extraordinary that she can perform this huge U-turn in terms of the defense, from being a story of "I left my daughter with a babysitter" to suddenly she drowns in the family pool. Does it have any credibility when you do that kind of thing in a courtroom?

DAN ABRAMS, ABC NEWS LEGAL ANALYST: Well, look, I think they could have made a credible defense argument here and that argument would have been that this was an accident, that the child drowned or the child hurt herself, or something happened where it was an accident, and that Casey then sort of lost it. I'm not saying that it would have been a winning defense, but it definitely would have been, in my view, a better defense than the one we're hearing.

Why? Because at least all they would have to do then is say, you prosecutors, you prove it. You prove that the cause of death was actually a duct tape around her mouth or that somehow she was responsible for killing this child. They could have simply said they haven't proved it.

Instead, what they've done is they've adopted a much greater burden. It may not be an additional legal burden, but it's a practical burden, by pointing the finger at George Anthony. And saying he molested her. That's why she lied. He disposed of the body, et cetera.

Then, if the jurors don't believe that, they're simply not going to believe the defense's case at all.

And so, I think the defense has made this a much harder case than they needed to.

MORGAN: Yes. I mean, Nancy, that certainly seems to be what most impartial observers are making of this. What do you think the next step's going to be in this case?

GRACE: Well, you know, Piers, every day, the defense astounds me by what they do. For instance, yesterday, they brought up all of tot mom's, Casey Anthony's, imaginary friends. Piers, she has such an elaborate web of lies to cover those 31 days when she was shacked up at her boyfriend's house -- from a broken down car, to the nanny's in the hospital, to "I'm in Tampa on work," "I'm at Universal Studios."

And the whole time, the grandmother's getting more and more upset, trying to find her little girl.

But this is going to be the problem for the defense, let me tell you what the problem is. Number one: back in March, before Caylee goes missing in June, you got tot mom on the computer looking up, how do you make homemade chloroform? How do you turn household items into weapons? How do you break somebody's neck?

They've got a high concentration of chloroform in tot mom's trunk. There on the scene, where Caylee's body was found, just 15 houses from the Anthony's home, you find chloroform in a container at the scene. And there was no way -- as God is my witness, Piers Morgan -- that that grandfather put duct tape across Caylee's mouth and nose left her out in that field.

And Dan is right. Now, the defense has taken on a burden that they've got to prove that. They can't do it.

MORGAN: Dan, let me ask you, finally -- just running out of time here -- Dan, if you were prosecuting this, based on everything you've seen and heard so far, would you be feeling pretty optimistic of a conviction now?

ABRAMS: Oh, yes. I mean, look, the 31 days were always going to be impossible for the defense to deal with to some degree, right? Which is this period where she's lying about everything -- she's lying about looking for her, she's lying about why she's not spending time at home, she's lying about the nanny, et cetera. I mean, that's enormously difficult for the defense to deal with, with any defense here.

The fact that the prosecutors have been able to go through, day by day, witness by witness, talk about those 31 days, and they haven't suffered a major setback in the prosecution's case, is a win for the prosecution. But, again, the prosecutors still have to prove that this was murder. Not that she was just lying about it, but that she actually murdered her child. And I think, unfortunately, the defense has at times lost that focus -- on focusing on that issue and instead dealing with what I would describe as somewhat tangential issues.

MORGAN: Well, Dan, we're going to have to leave it there. It's a fascinating case. Thank you to you and to Nancy.

GRACE: Thank you, Piers.

MORGAN: We'll be watching every twist and turn as it happens.

ABRAMS: Good to see you, Piers.

MORGAN: Appreciate you joining me. Thank you.

Coming up: scandal, celebrity and politics from a man who's not shock by anything, the always outspoken and always entertaining Jerry Springer.


MORGAN: It takes a lot to shock Jerry Springer, the man who presides over one of the wildest shows on television as well pretty much seen it all. And he's just the man to talk about some of the extraordinary scandals in American politics at the moment.

Jerry Springer joins me.

It's been a pretty wild time, Jerry. I mean, if you made a show about political scandals right now, you'd be hard pushed to get them all in. JERRY SPRINGER, HOST, "THE JERRY SPRINGER SHOW": Yes, we wouldn't have trouble, you know, booking people. But I think it's just part of our culture and also part of technology. It's that there's so much more information out about people and right away it becomes viral. Everybody talks about it.

The problem is that so much of it has very little consequence other than gossip. It doesn't really affect anybody's life except the families involved. And that's what the waste of time is.

With real serious issue facing America today, you know, we spend our time talking about who slept with whom. And it's like -- just stop it. Who cares? Except the family members, you know? And that's -- you know, maybe we'll get over it.

MORGAN: When you were a fledgling politician yourself, you went through a bit of a scandal. It's well-documented.


MORGAN: When you come back from some of that -- obviously, you came back magnificently -- what advice would you give to all these characters currently caught up in it? Whether you're Arnold Schwarzenegger, whether you're the guy from IMF, obviously, more serious, whether you're Anthony Weiner -- when you go through something so public and humiliating in so many ways, what's the best way to dust yourself down?

SPRINGER: Well, tell the truth. Tell it early. Tell it before the public knows. You know, be in front of the story. You know, people understand no one's perfect and we all do things we're kind of ashamed of and, you know, shouldn't have done it, et cetera. So, don't be hypocritical about it.

I find that people who get in trouble are really the people that are hypocritical, that build, let's say, a career in one direction, saying, we're going after these people, these people are so immoral, that's horrible, or whatever. And then the next day, they're in the headline with the exact same story.

So, we should all stop being judgmental. In the end, God will make his decisions about us.

MORGAN: On this Weiner-gate thing, even if Anthony Weiner sent somebody who wasn't his wife --

SPRINGER: Who cares? Right.

MORGAN: -- a tweet -- that's I suppose the important question. Because you might say that, but there will be lots of women in particular who go and vote for these politicians who do care about that kind of thing. And you have a totally different view of a politician as a man they want to vote for, if they think he's a cheat or if he isn't.

SPRINGER: Well, here's the point. You elect someone because they're going to fix the country. Or fix the city. Or fix the state. Whatever the office is they're running for. That's what you want.

During World War II, I don't care who Franklin Roosevelt as had as a girlfriend. Stop the Nazis. You know, win the war. That's what you care about.

And all this other stuff, as I said, is such a waste of time. We're not asking -- we never asked anyone to marry Bill Clinton during all of that. It was no one else's business -- no one else's.

And the fact of the matter is that the country was hurt not because of what he did, though that was immoral and wrong, et cetera, but the country got hurt because we spent two years making an issue of it instead of saying, I'm not married to Bill Clinton. That's not my business.

MORGAN: I take the point. It comes down I guess to trust, doesn't it? I mean, if, say, someone like Barack Obama who is so the personification of a happily -- family man, married and so on. If he turned out to have an affair, it would be pretty devastating to his image and could cost him an election, couldn't it? So, it's important.

SPRINGER: Well, I understand it has political consequences. And I understand that. But in terms of what is right or wrong or what matters or not, none of this matters. You could, for example, be -- make very smart decisions about political issues, about issues that affect the community, and in your personal life really be -- make dumb decisions. You know, the human race is filled with that.

If we're going to have a litmus test that the only people that can serve in office are those people who never sinned, then, according to most religion, only Jesus Christ could ever serve in office. I mean, really. Because apparently, according to religion, we're all sinners.

MORGAN: But like all these things, it's kind of -- the story actually, whether it's Arnold Schwarzenegger or whether it's now Anthony Weiner -- it tends to be the cover-up or the alleged cover-up. Arnold Schwarzenegger hid the fact he had this love child from the electorate. If he come out with it and admitted it, he may have been elected. He probably wouldn't have been actually in the current climate.

With Anthony Weiner, I watched his press conference, saw the interviews. I couldn't make heads nor tail of what he was saying. Your point about being honest --

SPRINGER: My guess is he's probably in an uncomfortable position. None of the answers are going to sound really good. So therefore, ah, we got him, OK. So there was a picture that shouldn't have been sent of him. It's not going to affect whether our kids are grand kids are going to get a good education in school.

It's not going to affect whether people are going to get jobs. It just -- it doesn't matter. Put these things on entertainment shows. But when you're talking about running the government, what kind of job you're doing running the government, that's all -- running our country, that's all I care about. Let his family worry about the rest.

MORGAN: What kind of job is Barack Obama doing as president of your country?

SPRINGER: Well, I love it. I love him. I think -- look, I started out being supportive of Hillary Clinton and very proud of that. So it wasn't like I've always been, you know, let's have Obama. The truth of the matter is that I think he's been a wonderful president.

Are there things that are not right with the country right now? Of course. But not everything has to do with the president. You know, he's in very difficult times.

But he's exactly the qualities I want as a president. He's a generalist. He's the brightest person in the room. He's able to ask good questions, very quietly, Without a lot of bragging and braggadocio.

What does he do? He gets Osama bin Laden. I mean, wasn't that a wonderful moment in the middle of going to that dinner, having to answer his birth -- whether he was born -- all this trivial nonsense.

He was so cool. By the way, we got bin Laden.

MORGAN: At the moment, a new book coming out, "The Hope of Audacity."


MORGAN: Because in one fell swoop, funny enough, what he gave was everybody I think a renewed hope in him, that he did have the balls to go for it when he has to. That was something his critics were saying he didn't have, particularly on foreign policy.

SPRINGER: What I love about him is he has staked his presidency on one of the most moral decisions you could ever make as a politico. He said, let's have as close as possible all Americans have health care and health insurance.

God bless him. You know? If we're going to go down for a cause, let's go down for this one.

MORGAN: See, I find it completely baffling, coming from Britain, where, as you know, there's the national health service. Everybody gets free health care. It's not an issue. Everybody gets free health care. If you're injured, you walk into a hospital, you get treated.

When I found Obama was being pilloried for putting 30 million more people into that kind of system, I was actually kind stunned.

SPRINGER: We think these 30 million people don't love their children? Do you think they're OK about getting sick? Do you think we're OK with the fact that the only time they ever get to see the doctor is -- because they can't afford it -- is when they go to the emergency room. And then it's often too late to have quality care. You're already sick or near dying.

I mean, all these people -- shouldn't we as Americans -- you know, if these 30 million people were hit by a terrorist bomb, we'd be doing everything in the world to find these killers. But the killer of Americans is disease; 99.9 percent of Americans will ultimately leave this earth because of a disease or accident. One millionth of one percent will leave this Earth because they happen to be in a building that got hit by a terrorist plane.

So since we know that most of us are ultimately going to go because of disease, wouldn't that be the number one priority? If you love America, how can you not love Americans? Why aren't we making sure and being happy about it?

Yes, are there problems with the particular plan? We'll fix it. Don't ever say you're not happy with the fact that now 30 million more Americans have health insurance. What kind of people are we to say that's not a good thing?

MORGAN: Well, we're going to come back after break and discuss one of those people, Sarah Palin and Donald Trump and a few other of the leading political lights, and get the Jerry Springer verdict.


MORGAN: Back with my special guest Jerry Springer. Jerry, we had Donald Trump on earlier. I would say flirting again with this notion of potentially running to be president. What would you make of President Trump as an option for America?

SPRINGER: Well, I like the man. And I've had some association with him in the past. You know, we worked together.

MORGAN: You worked with him on Miss Universe, right?

SPRINGER: Yes, the year we did it in Vietnam. He's been nothing but nice to me, so I really like him. I don't want him to be our president. I have a lot of friends --

MORGAN: Why don't you?

SPRINGER: One, I don't agree with his views. But number two is he has great skill in business and in marketing. Great skill. I would disagree with him. I believe that just because you're good in business -- it's a totally different skill than being a political leader. Because when you're in business, there's only one line you look at, the bottom line. Are you making a profit or not? You do whatever you can to make a profit.

When you're dealing in political matters, in governmental matters, it's not a matter of pro profit. You're providing a service. Oftentimes, it's not possible to put a number on it, to quantify it. You have to provide services. And you have to be able to deal with nuance. You have to be able to deal with people. MORGAN: My issue with Donald would be diplomacy, because when he starts --

SPRINGER: that's it --

MORGAN: He goes off on the Chinese -- we were talking about this during the break. You're reading the Kissinger book on China. I've been to China and done documentaries. The idea you could become president of the United States right now, and declare economic war on China, I'm not sure you could do that and get away with it.

SPRINGER: Well, no, and you shouldn't be able to. You see, in business, you make decisions. But in politics, you make not decisions -- that's only half the problem. Or half the issue you deal with. You have to make the right decisions. But then, the most important part, you have to be able to bring people along with your decisions.

It's the human contact. So you could be writing what you want to do. But if you don't have the 51 percent of the population with you, it will fail dismally. Talk to George Bush 43rd. He ran into those problems.

MORGAN: What I like about Donald Trump as a concept is that he's just got this supreme confidence. It does seem to me America generally at the moment is lacking in confidence. You see the economy today tanking, Dow index collapsing, jobs serious again. You see house prices going down again. America needs some bravado, doesn't it?

SPRINGER: Well, it is so momentary. First of all, there are going to be days that the market is bad. There are going to be days when things go bad and the next day they go a little bit better. The truth of the matter is, America's problems are not going to be solved by anybody.

Forget Donald Trump. Just anybody just standing up there, we're the greatest, no one's going to push us around. That doesn't work in this world.

MORGAN: Sarah Palin does a lot of that, a lot of big talking. What do you make of her?

SPRINGER: She connects. She connects in a very important way. I wouldn't support her for president. I don't believe in the things she believes in. But we have to be very careful making fun of Sarah Palin. Because she connects with this whole idea of people feeling put upon, of people feeling that they're being insulted, looked down upon.

And we do this in American politics, this idea of, oh, you're from the sticks. You're from the flyover area. You're a fundamentalist. We make fun of people's religion.

MORGAN: It's not patronizing, because of the show you've done for so long, you know these people better than almost anybody else. SPRINGER: And I am telling you, those people -- and I am not one bit better than anyone that has ever been on my show. None of us are. Some of us just dress better. But the fact of the matter is these people have beliefs and these people take their beliefs very seriously.

And they don't like people on -- whether it's on the coast or people in suits or people with wealth looking down on them and saying -- and kind of sneering at them, being condescending towards them.

She connects with that. The people that are coming out, they're angry.

MORGAN: Are there enough people like that to --

SPRINGER: No, I don't think she could be elected president. No, she won't get the nomination.

MORGAN: Who might get the nomination? At the moment, you're seeing Mitt Romney emerging. Rudy Giuliani has emerged again. They've both been in the frame before. What do you think of those two candidates?

SPRINGER: Here's the thing: a candidate is never as popular as he is or she is the moment before they announce. The moment they announce, they all start going down.

MORGAN: Where would your money be on a Republican candidate right now?

SPRINGER: I'd say right now it would be either Pawlenty or Romney. That's what I'm thinking.

Look, something major could change. Here's what I think: the election is going to be on Barack Obama. Who else is -- who the Republicans put up there is almost irrelevant, unless they put a crazy up there. And then people will vote for Obama anyway.

But this is -- every presidential election is a referendum on the administration currently in power. There are no exceptions to that. And so right now, people will be judging Barack Obama. I still think in the end, he wins. I still think in the end --

MORGAN: I would just throw one spanner in the works. It would appear at the moment that he's likely to win. But if the economy keeps going the way that it looks like it is and America does dip into a depression, a double-dip, as they call it -- if that happens, that could be his undoing.

SPRINGER: Oh, sure.

MORGAN: Forget anything he does on the international stage.

SPRINGER: If America has a depression, we're not going to care about Obama's career. I agree with you. Let's assume for a moment we don't have a depression. If we don't have a depression, I still believe that people -- he's the kind of person you want leading. He's not -- doesn't go off on the deep end.

He's very rational and very smart. And you know what, he's doing great. We got to remember -- remember the first three months when he was president. Talk about a depression coming. People were losing half of their net worth. Sometimes more.

Everything was falling apart. And here comes this guy who we thought had no experience, very calmly. The banks got saved. And we may be angry at the banks now. And there's stuff we have to do. But the financial system got saved. The auto industry got saved, you know. And we've stabilized.

MORGAN: But -- it's a big but, Jerry. Right now, today, the signs are looking quite ominous. I think it's a pretty serious double-dip situation that America may be heading into. By the way, one person who won't be fixing it is probably you, because you have your own Birther issue. You were born in my country, Britain.

SPRINGER: I was. In fact, I left when I found out I couldn't be king.

MORGAN: We'll discuss this after the break, you and the king.



MORGAN: Back with Jerry Springer now. Jerry, you were born in Highgate, in a subway. So technically you can't be president, right?

SPRINGER: Right, not because I was born in the subway, but because I was born in England. I'm an American citizen. I became an American citizen after I was here for five years. And the reason I -- as you probably know is that during the war, the women in their ninth month would often spend the nights in the subway tubes because those were the bomb shelters.

MORGAN: Safest place to be.

SPRINGER: Right. So I was born 11:45 at night. Every time I hear a train go by -- no, I was born --

MORGAN: There you are. Sweet little chap you were, Jerry.

SPRINGER: That's my sister, Evelyn. Where did you get these?

MORGAN: I watched a very moving interview you did in Britain actually about the whole situation with your family and the Holocaust and the number of relatives that you lost to that.

It's interesting, looking at your time on the Springer show, you've never lost your cool other than the one time I can remember. I want to play the clip, which is when you had these -- the Nazi sympathizers. I want to play you the clip and show you what happened.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) SPRINGER: The reality of the show is not about whether we know that the six million people died. Trust me --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know --

SPRINGER: Shut your face right now.


MORGAN: I've never seen you lose your cool like that, before or after.

SPRINGER: No, that's right. That was the only time in the show I ever lost it. Because the part the clip didn't show is that earlier in the show, you know, he had referred to -- he said if I had your mother, I would have chopped her up and turned her -- put her in the trunk of a car and turned her into a lamp shade.

Because I had lost my family in the Holocaust. So he was just -- once they say something like that about your mother, it's almost like -- that's like -- you just can't -- what was funny is you can see what a wimp I really am. I said shut your face like I'm really going to be tough. And then he stood up and , all of a sudden, I realized he's going to hurt me.

Thank God everybody jumped in there. And where did I get that hair?

MORGAN: Let me ask you a tricky question, because I've known you a long time and we're good friends and we worked together on "America's Got Talent." And we've had lots of great dinners where we've discussed world affairs and stuff.

I always get the sense that you kind of wrestle with the dilemma of the Springer show, that it almost became too successful for you to get out of, when actually you probably intellectually -- it frustrates you. Am I right?

SPRINGER: Yeah. I mean, I've always said -- look, I love doing the show. It's fun to do. It's fun to do. I get paid handsomely. It's given me a wonderful life. I would be paid more if I had a cleaner show, obviously.

MORGAN: You have called it the worst show on television.

SPRINGER: Yeah, it is.

MORGAN: What did you mean by that?

SPRINGER: Well, partly tongue in cheek. But "TV Guide" gave out an award several years ago for the 50 worst shows in the history of television. Yes, we won. Thank you very much.

MORGAN: Right on, Jerry. You must be very proud.

SPRINGER: Well, you wouldn't want to be the second worst show in the history of television, because who would notice you? Who knows that. But we're the worst show ever. Look, it's an absurd show.

MORGAN: Why do you keep doing it?

SPRINGER: I told you, one, I enjoy it. And two, there's a part of me that doesn't want to give in to --

MORGAN: Snobbery?

SPRINGER: Yeah. Because I will say the argument against the show is totally elitist.

MORGAN: The argument is that it panders to the lowest common denominator, which in itself is a snobbish phrase, because it means you're --

SPRINGER: Watch any news show, any single night. For the last three weeks, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Congressman Weiner, one after another -- one after another celebrity doing wealthy people, the guy with the IMF at the hotel room.

The idea that -- the only reason people argue against the show is because these people don't speak the queen's English. They aren't dressed well. They use the F-word instead of language we learned going to good schools.

In other words, it's purely class elitist, because the behavior of wealthy people is in no way more moral, more worthy of going to heaven than the behavior of poorer people. We are getting them on the show at a moment that they're dealing with some issue, not a major issue.

Let's be honest. Most of the things they talk about are dating. They're upset. They're really angry. But the next day, they're dating somebody else.

But you know what, most of the people on my show -- obviously not this guy -- I really like. You know, after the show, they're like everyone else. All the people that live in the wealthy neighborhoods, they're like everyone else. Jerry, what's a good restaurant to go to here? Can we take a picture of you holding my kid? Jerry, Jerry, love you man.

You know what, they're like everybody else.

MORGAN: Hold on to this thought, Jerry, which is a very interesting one, because I want to come back after the break and talk to you about the moment you and I met Muhammad Ali here in Los Angeles, and what his verdict is on the Springer show.


MORGAN: Back with my special guest Jerry Springer, whose -- whose show "Baggage" airs on the Game Show Network twice a night every weekday.

Jerry, we had this extraordinary moment with Muhammad Ali. I had dinner with you, Mr. Charles, in L.A. here, and you spent a large portion of it telling me this extraordinary tale of how Muhammad Ali -- you had met him and his wife about three months before -- and he was watching the Springer show every single day.

And I got to be honest with you, I didn't know you that well. I thought, this is complete nonsense. I don't believe a word of this. We walked back to the Beverly Wilshire hotel. We walked to the front area where the cars come in.

A limo sweeps up and out steps Muhammad Ali. And I went, well, now we're going to find out. And his wife sees you and says, oh, it's Jerry Springer again. Muhammad, it's Jerry. He's still watching the show.

And in that moment, I died, because I realized I'd never question you again. But what a moment.

SPRINGER: The timing -- the greatest watching the show, sure. Even if no one else ever watched, I know Muhammad Ali is watching, so I'm doing the show.

MORGAN: That was a great moment. And here's -- talking of great moments, I want to leave with you doing your extraordinary party piece, which is you claim you can name every American president in order in one minute. Coincidentally, we have one minute left.

Jerry Springer, the floor is yours.

SPRINGER: OK. George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, James Poke, Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan, Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Johnson, Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes, James Garfield, Chester Arthur, Grover Cleveland, Benjamin Harrison, Grover Cleveland again, William McKinley, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Warren Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Hoover, Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman.

MORGAN: Click.

SPRINGER: Wait. Truman -- no, Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson --


MORGAN: Anderson Cooper --


MORGAN: Anderson Cooper with AC360.

ANDERSON COOPER, HOST, AC360: Thanks, Rainman.