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State of the Union

Interview With Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders; Interview With Donald Trump Jr.; World According to Trump; Hillary Clinton Hunts for Vice President; Candidates' Veepstakes 2016; Remembering Prince In State of the Cartoonion. Aired 9-10a ET

Aired April 24, 2016 - 09:00   ET




JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Tale of two Trumps. His advisers are promising a kinder, gentler candidate, but he seems to be having second thoughts.

DONALD TRUMP SR. (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If I acted presidential, I guarantee you that this morning I wouldn't be here.

TAPPER: Can either version carry him to the nomination, or will it all come down to a convention fight?

SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I will have a ton of delegates. Donald Trump will have a ton of delegates, and then it will be a battle.

Plus, Donald's defender.

DONALD TRUMP JR., SON OF DONALD TRUMP: They are deathly afraid of my father on both sides because of what he will do to that system that they have grown very, very comfortable with.

TAPPER: Many see Trump's family as his secret weapon. His oldest son gives us the inside view on the world according to Trump.

Plus Hillary Clinton on the hunt for a vice president. Is Elizabeth Warren in the running?

HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Men, women, I'm going to be looking at anybody who can fit that role for me.

TAPPER: And does that mean Clinton is blowing off Bernie Sanders? He will be here live.

Plus, the best political minds will be here with insights from the campaign trail.


TAPPER: Hello. I'm Jake Tapper in Washington, where the state of our union is vetting. That's right, America. Your veepstakes seem to have officially begun with a in "The New York Times" today claiming that Hillary Clinton has already compiled a list of 15 to 20 potential vice presidential picks.

On the list, according to "The New York Times," progressive leaders Senators Elizabeth Warren and Sherrod Brown. Both senators from the swing commonwealth of Virginia, Tim Kaine and Mark Warner, are reported options. And other Democratic notables such as HUD Secretary Julian Castro, former Governor Deval Patrick of Massachusetts, and Senators Amy Klobuchar, Bill Nelson and Cory Booker.

Clinton herself was mum when asked about this topic on the campaign trail yesterday.


QUESTION: Has your campaign started to consider who to pick for V.P.?

HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm just working hard to win on Tuesday.



TAPPER: At the least, it seems to signal that Clinton is ready to move past the primaries, while her opponent, Bernie Sanders, insists that the fight is far from over.

And joining me now is Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, joining me from the great state of Rhode Island.

Senator, thanks so much for joining us.


TAPPER: So, Senator, according to "The New York Times," Hillary Clinton has started compiling a list of 15 to 20 potential V.P. picks that she wants to start vetting in late spring.

Broadly, regardless of which of the two of you ultimately wins the Democratic nomination, should the other one be first on the V.P. list?

SANDERS: Look, I'm focusing right now on dealing with why the middle class of this country continues to disappear, why we're the only country on Earth, Jake, that doesn't provide paid family and medical leave, why we don't guarantee health care to all of our people.

I was just in Baltimore yesterday. The level of poverty is unbelievable. We have to rebuild our inner cities. I think the American people want us to focus on the real issues impacting them, how their kids can afford to go to college, not worry at this point about who is going to be a vice presidential candidate.

TAPPER: Well, then broadly speaking on those issues, if you don't win the nomination, does Hillary Clinton need an outspoken progressive, someone like you or Elizabeth Warren, as her running mate to motivate your supporters and make sure that those issues you just talked about are on the forefront?

SANDERS: Well, I think that Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders or Donald Trump, whoever became the candidates may be, need to start talking to the real issues facing the American people.

And that is that we have a grotesque level of income and wealth inequality. Jake, how often do we talk about on television that the 20 wealthiest people in this country now own more wealth than the bottom 150 million people, that, in fact, we are seeing public school systems, one end of this country, in serious, serious trouble, we are seeing kids graduating college deeply in debt?

All of the candidates need to focus on those issues. And vice presidential candidates need to do the same. That's what I'm trying to do in this campaign. That's why we have come from 3 percent in the polls to almost tying or in some cases being ahead of Secretary Clinton in national polls.

TAPPER: David Plouffe, Barack Obama's 2008 campaign manager, who, we should say, is now supporting Hillary Clinton, Plouffe had some strong words for you on Twitter.

He wrote -- quote -- "Sanders has run a stunningly strong campaign fueled by passionate supporters, but raising money stating that you have path to nomination is fraud" -- unquote.

What's your response to Plouffe?

SANDERS: Well, my response is that David Plouffe is working for Hillary Clinton.

The idea that we should not vigorously contest this election, when the largest state in the United States of America, California, has not yet voted, nine other states will not have voted after Tuesday, of course, we're going to give every -- the people in every state in this country the right to determine who they want to see president of the United States, what kind of agenda they want.


Jake, you know, when we began this campaign, we were way, way behind. And I think it is fair to say that we have the momentum, we have the energy, that we are bringing millions of people into the political process.

What is good for America, what is good for the Democratic Party is to see a whole lot of people debating the real issues impacting our country. That's how you have a large voter turnout. And when you have a large voter turnout, Democrats and progressives win, and Republicans will lose.

TAPPER: Do you have a path to the nomination, though, sir? In what states can you win so overwhelmingly that you can overtake her ultimately in the pledged delegate count?

SANDERS: Well, I'm not going to tell you that it's easy, but I think we do.

What polls seem to be showing is that many of the states yet to come, including California, our largest state, we have a real shot to win. And I think, also, there are a lot of delegates out there who are looking at the general matchup, and what they're seeing in polls is that Bernie Sanders is running a lot stronger against Donald Trump than is Hillary Clinton, because we can appeal to a lot of independents and people, not just the Democrats.

So, I think we do have a path to victory. I think we have come a very, very long way in the last year, and we're going to fight for every last vote until the -- California and the D.C. primary.

TAPPER: Senator, President Obama told the BBC today that he does not think the military campaign against ISIS will be completed before he leaves office. There are now around 5,000 U.S. troops fighting ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

Is the U.S. at war in the Middle East again? And does Congress need to pass a new authorization for use of military force, so that the next president, which could be you, has a clear authority to wage this war?

SANDERS: Well, I would like to see an authorization.

The question obviously is, what is in that authorization? And, Jake, I will oppose any authorization that gives us just a wide-open approach to getting involved into perpetual war in the Middle East. I think the president has done a good job in trying to balance the need to destroy ISIS.

We have got to put together a coalition of the Muslim nations. But I voted against the war in Iraq, one of the differences that I have with Secretary Clinton. I will do everything that I can to make sure that our men and women in the military are not sucked into perpetual war there.

TAPPER: You were asked this weekend about why Hillary Clinton beats you in states where income inequality is most stark. And you responded that -- quote -- "Because poor people don't vote" -- unquote.

It was, however, Hillary Clinton, not you, who carried Democratic voters with household incomes below $50,000 a year. Clinton carried this group 55 percent to 44 percent across primaries where network exit polls had been conducted.

SANDERS: Well, let me just say this.

One of the reasons I am running for president of the United States is to try to revitalize American democracy. It is no secret that we have one of the lowest voting turnout rates of any major country on earth. And it is also true, in the last general election we had in 2014, 63 percent of the American people didn't vote, and the numbers were worse for low-income people, and the numbers were worse for young people.

So, what we have got to do, Jake, is to not only overturn this disastrous Citizens United Supreme Court decision, so that billionaires and super PACs are not able to buy elections. We have got to involve people. And it's not easy, because so many people have given up on the political process, including a whole lot of low-income people, where the voting rates are in fact quite low, young people, who are not voting in large numbers.

Our job is to bring people into the political process, to create a government which represents all of us, and not just the 1 percent. And if there's a thing that I'm trying to do in this campaign, that's precisely what I'm trying to do, to increase the number of lower- income people who are voting, working people who are voting, young people who are voting, revitalize American democracy.

And when we do that, I think we begin to change the dynamic of government in America, where it's not just big money interests who make the decisions, but ordinary people.

TAPPER: Are you surprised that you consistently lose lower-income Americans to Hillary Clinton?

SANDERS: Well, I am surprised at how well we have done in this campaign.

You know, Jake, if you and I were talking 11, 11-and-a-half months ago, you would not have believed that we would here where we are right now. You would not believe that we have won 16 states at this point, and that we're running very close to Secretary Clinton in general election matchups, and, in fact, we're beating Trump by rather large numbers.

I'm very proud of the campaign that we have run and the kinds of support that we are getting.

TAPPER: There is a lot of concern, as you know, about what kind of damage you or Hillary Clinton might be doing to one another.


One of your high-profile surrogates, actress Rosario Dawson, invoked Monica Lewinsky at one of your rallies. Do you think it's appropriate for your surrogates to be talking about Monica Lewinsky on the campaign trail?

SANDERS: We have many, many -- Rosario is a great actress, and she's doing a great job for us. And she's been a passionate fighter to see that we see the increase voter turnout, that we fight for racial, economic, environmental justice.

What our job right now is to contrast our views compared to Secretary Clinton. That's what a campaign is about. My own view is, we should break up the large financial institutions on Wall Street. I'm opposed to fracking. And, by the way, we just won a good victory in New York state the other day. A major fracking program has been killed. I think we have got to ask the wealthy and large corporations to start paying their fair share of taxes. So, what I will be doing in this campaign is in an issue-oriented way, not by personal attacks...

TAPPER: Right, but that's...

SANDERS: ... but by contrasting our view to Secretary Clinton.

TAPPER: But, yes or no, should your surrogates be talking about Monica Lewinsky?

SANDERS: I have no idea in what context Rosario was talking about her.

But I would hope that all of our people focus on the real issues facing working people and the massive level of income and wealth inequality that we have.

And, by the way, it might be a good idea for all of us, including television networks, to start talking about the planetary crisis of climate change, because the scientists tell us, if we do not transform our energy system away from fossil fuels, energy efficiency and sustainable energy, we should worry about the planet that we're going to be leaving our kids and our grandchildren.

TAPPER: Thank you, Senator. Good luck on Tuesday.

SANDERS: Thank you, Jake.

Coming up: Donald Trump says his family is always asking him to act more presidential. So, what do they think of this new supposedly toned-down Trump we have been seeing? His son Donald Jr. will join me next.



TAPPER: Welcome back.

Donald Trump's campaign has been signaling a shift to a more restrained Donald Trump, one the Republican establishment might be better able to swallow as their nominee. But is it the real deal, and can Trump resist the public persona that has gotten him this far?

And joining me now from right outside Scranton in Pennsylvania is Donald Trump Jr.

Thanks so much for joining us, Don. We really appreciate it.

DONALD TRUMP JR., SON OF DONALD TRUMP: My pleasure, Jake. How you doing?

TAPPER: So, take a look at what your father's new campaign manager told the Republican National Committee this week, according to "The New York Times" -- quote -- "Addressing about 100 committee members at the spring meeting mere, many of them deeply skeptical about Mr. Trump's candidacy, the campaign chief, Paul Manafort, bluntly suggested the candidate's incendiary style amounted to an act."

Quote: "'That's what's important for you to understand, that he gets it, and that the part he's been playing is evolving,'" Mr. Manafort said" -- unquote.

So, Don, you know your dad better than almost anyone in the world. What part of what we see is the part he's been playing.

DONALD TRUMP JR.: Well, listen, Jake, I think there's aspects of things where he will take things to a level that they need to be taken to, to be able to draw attention to it.

If you look at any of the issues that he's spoken about, he will talk about them in a way that no one else has spoken about them. He will take them to a certain level.

And guess what? An issue that was taboo or no one wanted to touch, all of a sudden, people are actually talking about it. So it's not that it's an act, but sometimes he does have to talk about things in a certain way to be able to draw the requisite attention that that topic actually needs.

No one else will touch it if he hasn't done that. So, I think, for him, this is a very natural evolution. He's switching over, getting focused on the general election, where he's going to have to talk to that broader audience. So, I think it's a very natural progression.

TAPPER: So, when he talks about building a wall, or when he talks about deporting 11 million people in this country, undocumented immigrants, is that just playing a part, or is that to be taken literally?

DONALD TRUMP JR.: No, I think that's to be taken literally.

He's been -- he's the only person that has been talking about that. He's the -- everyone else jumps on the bandwagon after he says it. He says it, three weeks later, everyone else, once he's taken all the heat, once he's taken all the criticism, once he's taken all of that, then everyone else jumps on and says, hey, wait a minute, this is actually a winning idea. This is something that makes a lot of sense.

And then they do it, because he's the only one of the candidates that actually ever had an original thought in years.

TAPPER: So, the bottom line is, we should take him at face value, but there might be some rhetorical flourish in there?

DONALD TRUMP JR.: I think, without question, yes. I mean, I think that's only natural.

I see that in politics all the time. Everyone pretends that's not the case, but that's very much what I have seen. TAPPER: A Republican committeewoman from Maryland had some advice for

your father. I want you to take a listen.



It is up to you to go out there and win those delegate votes vote by vote, and fight for them.


TAPPER: So, are you or your sister Ivanka or Eric or any other member of your family, are you planning to help your dad woo delegates one by one on behalf of your father?

DONALD TRUMP JR.: You know, I think we will do some of that. I think that's natural.

But, you know, I think his biggest thing is wanting to change the process. The fact that the average voter doesn't even know that their vote may not matter, or that their vote matters, but if you don't talk about the delegates -- you know, my father could do more wooing than anyone. He just doesn't want to play the game that way. He doesn't think that is right for the country.

Why should a couple people who are establishment elitists get to go on beautiful vacations? He could send his private plane and take them down to Doral. They could play golf for a week, and then we win that delegate?

That's the not the way this country should be run, Jake. I'm here with two congressmen from the state of Pennsylvania, and we have to print out cards because every district of the hundreds of districts in the state have three people that could serve as delegates for us or for someone else.

So, you could actually win the state in a landslide. And of the 70- something delegates that are there, you only get 17. The other 50 and change, they are up for grabs for whoever bribes them.

I think this isn't America. This isn't a country. This is the way it's been. And some of the systems, I understand, they made sense 200 years ago, when everyone lived on a farm in the middle of nowhere.


But I have the Library of Congress in my iPhone. I have all the information I could possibly need. Most people still have cable television, right, and certainly access to news. They know what is going on.

They don't need this archaic system. But the establishment and the guys like Ted Cruz, they love this system, because they don't actually have to appeal to the voters. They don't have to care what the voters say. They just have to grab these umpteen people who have been party loyalists and do whatever the party says. And that's the problem in Washington. That is what creates the stalemate.

TAPPER: So, are...

DONALD TRUMP JR.: And let me finish.


DONALD TRUMP JR.: Because the one thing I will say is, I know guys that have been involved in the political process in this state and other states for a long time, and they had no idea.

I mean, these are people that have supported at a high level congressmen, senators, various -- and they had no idea this is the process, that basically people could be bought this way. And the American people are finally catching on. They should be and they are disgusted, Jake.

TAPPER: So, you don't like it. I understand you don't like the system.

But I guess what I don't understand is, are you going to try to woo delegates, according to the system, and then try to change it, or is your dad saying, no, we're not going to do that?

DONALD TRUMP JR.: Well, listen, I think we're going to do what we need to do to win to a point.

But I think we want to win without having to do that. Ted Cruz has no chance of winning this without bribing the delegates. That's his game at this point. OK? He's mathematically eliminated, but that's his game from day one, because he's not an appealing candidate to the general election voters.

So, he will try to get there. He will do this. He will lose more states than Mitt Romney, because I can't name a single state that Mitt lost that Ted can possibly win. So I think, at this point, the Republican establishment would much rather just hand the things over to Hillary, hand the reins over to her, let her run it, because guess what? There's no accountability in the party.

You lose, it doesn't matter. You win, OK, great, you win, because everyone's in on the same thing. All their job is to do is to protect the little cliques that they have formed to keep their -- the big paychecks rolling from their special interests. And that's the same thing with the delegate process that we're seeing today.

TAPPER: Don, do you think -- so, just to reiterate something you just said, you think that the Republican establishment would rather run Ted Cruz and lose with him than have your father be the nominee?

DONALD TRUMP JR.: You know, there are decisions that are being made, and there's things that I see and actions happening that make me really question whether they actually want someone who could actually win. When I see all the people in this state, because I'm in Pennsylvania today, who have switched over, and the hundreds of thousands of people all over the country who have switched over from being independent to being Republicans, who switched over from being Democrats to being Republicans, and they don't embrace that?

Instead, they go with -- want to try to push someone else who has zero chance of winning anywhere else? It doesn't make any sense to me. I have to certainly question their motives.

TAPPER: Ted Cruz launched a Web video this week attacking your father for saying that transgender individuals should be able to use whatever restroom they feel is appropriate. Take a look.


DONALD TRUMP SR.: People go, they use the bathroom that they feel is appropriate.


TAPPER: "Donald Trump won't take on the P.C. police," that ad said. "He's one of them."

What do you make of that? What do you think Ted Cruz means by "He's one of them"?


DONALD TRUMP JR.: I mean, honestly, Jake, give me a break. This is how desperate Ted Cruz is, because he doesn't have any support from anyone.

My father's taken on the P.C. police from day one. The issues that Ted Cruz is now trying to make his own, whether it be immigration, whether it's all these things, they were all my father's issues. These were the things. My father would take the heat. He would take the incoming fire from all the -- everyone else.

And then Ted Cruz will run along and say, hey, this is my great idea that I have.

I mean, it's such a joke. If there's one person that anyone who is an American, if you asked them who is the most un-P.C. candidate running for office right now, it's my father. So, this is a typical Ted Cruz sound bite. He can't win with the popular vote. He can't win with the people.

He wins by basically bribing delegates. This is more of the same, Jake. It's really -- it's actually laughable when I see it. I hadn't seen the ad until you mentioned it to me. So -- but it's pretty ridiculous, in my mind.

TAPPER: You have described your dad as a blue-collar billionaire. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour for a full-time employee.

That works out to be about $15,000 a year. Do you think your father would be willing to make a deal to raise the minimum wage?

DONALD TRUMP JR.: You know, I don't know.

There's a lot of different places. There's areas in the country where equal wages -- it's different. I live in New York City. It's a very different sort of area where you can live by. I think you would have to ask him directly as it relates to his policy on the minimum wage.

I think what he wants to do is, he wants to bring jobs back to this country. He wants to bring back so much of the industry that's been pushed away, whether it be by just terrible tax incentives for this country, whether it be by just bad guys running the businesses, whether -- he wants to bring manufacturing back to this country. He wants to bring jobs back to this country.

He wants to employ Americans again. And when you have a robust economy, I think you don't have to worry about a minimum wage, because people will actually be paid wages. But you need those jobs.


TAPPER: Your father's campaign manager, Paul Manafort, says that your father has not started any sort of vetting process to look for a running mate, to look for a vice president, in contrast to Ted Cruz and John Kasich.

Is there a deal to be made, do you think, with the V.P. position maybe to bring Rubio or Kasich or one of those other candidates on board? Is that why there hasn't been the vetting process begun?

DONALD TRUMP JR.: Well, listen, I think we have a little bit of time.

We -- again, we want to get there probably without it, so we can make a decision whenever we need to, not just before the convention. I think there's a lot of viable candidates out there. I think maybe some of those could be people who have run against us in this.

I think my father's been very clear about one thing, is that he would want someone who has navigated the D.C. waterways a little bit more than he has to be in there, I think. You know, he's the disrupter, but you are still going to need someone who has had that understanding. So, I think there's probably quite a few good options. But we haven't started the serious vetting process, because I think we will get there on our own without having to make that decision today.

TAPPER: Donald Trump Jr., thank you so much for joining us today. Really, really appreciate it.

DONALD TRUMP JR.: It's my pleasure, Jake. Thank you for having me.

TAPPER: Coming up: Is Trump going through an evolution or an about- face?


CRUZ: He is the Harry Houdini, engaged in an act of misdirection. Trump is a phony. And I will give him credit. He's telling us he's a phony. He's telling us he's lying to us.





TRUMP: So lying Ted took a really nice meeting with the RNC, Republican National Committee. Had took a really, really -- Rafael. Rafael straight out of the hills of Canada. Four years in Canada, was a Canadian citizen until 14, 15 months ago.


TAPPER: Meet the new Trump, same as the old Trump after promising to act more "presidential" the candidate was up to his old tricks on the campaign trail yesterday.

Does Trump have to pivot to win? With me here to discuss all of this, Andre Bauer, Trump supporter and former lieutenant governor of South Carolina, Neera Tanden, president for the Center for American Progress, and former policy adviser to Hillary Clinton, Mary Katharine Ham, conservative of -- it just says conservative there on the teleprompter --


TAPPER: Just conservative. Conservative writer and CNN political contributor, and Ben Jealous, former CEO of the NAACP, who is supporting Bernie Sanders.

So let's just start with this new presidential Trump, doesn't sound all that different from the old guy.

HAM: I have said all along he's going to say he'll pivot to being presidential. I don't think he's capable of it. He cannot put a lid on his id. He is Donald Trump. That's who he is. Donald Trump is not an ideological creature but he is a creature of habit and of personality and this is what you're going to see the entire time.

TAPPER: Now there is a philosophy amongst some in the Trump camp that, you know, let Donald be Donald but there also is this new group, Paul Manafort and Rick Wiley and others who think he does need to rein it in a little. What do you think?

ANDRE BAUER, FORMER SOUTH CAROLINA LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR: Donald Trump for once we have an authentic real candidate. That's why he has attracted so many new folks.

The Republican Party ought to be elated that they're getting all these new people in. What the big tent theory, the Democratic Party has done a better job attracting new voters. And so you have got a candidate now that's authentic. Yes, he's not scripting (ph). Yes, hasn't been to the political school where they teach you how to do everything just right and that's what's so refreshing about Donald Trump.

TAPPER: You look like you have something to say, Neera.

NEERA TANDEN, PRESIDENT AND CEO, CENTER FOR AMERICAN PROGRESS: He's definitely not been to a school where they teach you what to do all right. I'm sure that's true.

But I would say -- I think what is happening here is the delegate dance as far as I can see. You know, you have Trump trying to or his supporters saying Trump is trying to be more presidential. He's taking some moderated positions on North Carolina and other issues, and still in the heart of a primary, so you see Cruz trying to attack him on these more moderated positions. So I think it is a hard thing to try and move to the middle on some issues, and then also take all this coming from the right, so it will be an interesting balance to see whether he can do it.

HAM: Well, the thing about that though is I don't think this is -- we shouldn't pretend it's strategic him taking these positions. The positions are based on whoever is asking him at a given time and whatever he feels at a given time. I don't think it's a pivot. It's just what Donald Trump feels at that moment. Authentic maybe but not actually consistent.

BEN JEALOUS, FORMER PRESIDENT AND CEO, NAACP: You know, there are folks trying to get him to be more palatable to the mainstream Republican establishment. Good luck, but they're trying.



Do you think that Donald Trump will be a tough general election candidate against whomever the Democrats have (ph)?

JEALOUS: Yes. I've said time and time again that when you have a conservative celebrity, people always say they're a joke, and they often win.

I mean, you can go all the way back to Ronald Reagan, go back to Gopher, who ran for congress, Fred Grandy. You can go back to Jesse "The Body" Ventura, Arnold Schwarzenegger. You know, we thought in California...

BAUER: Great point.

JEALOUS: ... that Cruz Bustamante would clean Schwarzenegger's clock because he will be the first Latino governor. It didn't work out that way.


JEALOUS: So, we have to take him very, very seriously. TAPPER: So Andre, just to make sure I understand you you think let Trump be Trump, that he got as far as he did speaking his mind and no attempt to rein him in is going to be successful.

BAUER: Look, there's always ways you can say hey you ought to try to do this or try to do that but the guy is attracting record numbers. He's probably going to win this before you go to Cleveland, and --

TAPPER: Before?

BAUER: Before. He probably is going to have the delegate count.

Look what happened In New York Cruz was running around hoping he wouldn't get 50 percent, if he doesn't get 50 percent. He guy gets over 60 percent. He's on fire and it's because people are starved for a leader that isn't saying the same old thing.


TANDEN: Just to be clear, Donald Trump has the highest negatives amongst the broad electorate of any candidate ever.


TANDEN: So we can talk about his -- the past but the reality is, women, Latinos, the broad group of the electorate --


BAUER: ... bringing (ph) people out. You know --

TANDEN: He's very popular amongst Republicans.

JEALOUS: The high negatives are doing quite well.

TAPPER: Right, Hillary Clinton is second worst in the race.

TANDEN: I think she's third, with Cruz. Cruz is actually more negative.

TAPPER: Mazel tov. Yes, I would have guessed so.

HAM: I think you may we've seen the peak of the celebrity cache in the primary, the general electorate of course is different now.

We've seen him turn numbers around his numbers before as he did in the primary so I think there's always a chance of that but the question with Donald Trump in a general has always been ask he add more than he subtract subtracts? And I think if you look at his negatives the answer is no. He may be able to mix up the map a little bit but it's risky.

TAPPER: I want to go to something that you all prepared for which is assuming that Donald Trump gets the nomination, and I know that is a huge assumption.


TAPPER: But assuming he gets the nomination who would you recommend he pick as his vice president, Mary Katharine?

HAM: OK. There's a great piece of "The Federalist" by my colleague Mollie Hemingway on this who said -- I want to give her credit for this idea. Double down on the reality star thing. Mike Rowe...


HAM: He is -- he has been speaking for this working class voter longer than Donald Trump has. He is very, very likeable, perhaps -- particularly with women, where Donald Trump has a problem. Just go for it.

TAPPER: Ok. If there were a second choice, who would you?

HAM: Second choice, I think, Newt Gingrich has shown some affinity for Donald Trump.


HAM: He fills in a lot of the gaps that Donald Trump doesn't have when it comes to policy. He's been a conservative for many years and in the movement for many years, missteps here lean it. Has some reputation --

TAPPER: OK. In our premature veepstakes who would you pick for Donald Trump?

JEALOUS Look, I would go with Mike Steele, the former lieutenant governor of Maryland. And I would go with him quite frankly because I think he would kind of dull the edge of Donald Trump's hatred. He's somebody who is, you know, a big tent Republican, and who folks, people of color, blacks, Latinos, you pair him with Donald Trump might think Donald Trump is capable of shifting towards humanity.

TAPPER: What about you, Andre? Who would you pick?

BAUER: Well, of course I'd pick me.


TAPPER: OK. We didn't prepare that graphics. So why don't you tell us who you actually picked.

BAUER: I think you'll see something different. I think what he will do is he won't go with the norm that you pick a battleground state and pick somebody from that state or rival candidate.

I think he's going to say, who can help me get the job done?


BAUER: And I think he needs some balance and I like Mary Fallin for that reason. She has been in the private sector -- TAPPER: The governor of Oklahoma.

BAUER: She's been in the real estate business. But she has been in Congress. She has been a three-term lieutenant governor. She has been a highly successful governor, cutting the pension deficit in half, dealt with national disasters, an articulate, well spoke attractive woman that can balance Trump I think is the perfect V.P. candidate.

TAPPER: And Neera who would you pick for Donald Trump?

TANDEN: I mean, I think it's premature on both sides.

TAPPER: Yes. Of course it's very premature. (INAUDIBLE).

TANDEN: You know, actually I think the single issue here is that the Republican Party seems to be broken, and so I think the -- I think that he has to take someone who is running and Ted Cruz is a person who represents conservatives. He's gotten the second most votes. If you're thinking of putting your party back together again.

JEALOUS: So, we double down on reality stars to double down (INAUDIBLE).

TAPPER: All right, there you go. We're going to take a quick --


TAPPER: Don't go anywhere. Up next Hillary Clinton's advisers are also putting together potential names for a running mate. Will she make a bold choice or a safe one? The Democratic veepstakes heat up.




CLINTON: I'm looking for a team, and the most important member of that team would be whoever I asked to be my running mate, and I'm not ruling anybody out.


TAPPER: Not ruling anyone out but the "New York Times" is reporting that Clinton has narrowed the list of 15 or so. What about our panel's picks for her?

Neera, I know I bring you to the Hillary veepstakes reluctantly. And let us do the caveat and you think this is premature.

TANDEN: Yes, very premature.

TAPPER: Very premature.

TANDEN: I am (INAUDIBLE) that it is pretty premature. TAPPER: It is premature we all agree. Let's do it anyway.

TANDEN: (INAUDIBLE) Clinton's campaign is not vetting candidates et cetera.

TAPPER: You disagree with the "New York Times'" story?

TANDEN: I do. I do. I think -- a lot of people outside of the campaign (INAUDIBLE).

TAPPER: All right. Patrick Healy is a pretty good reporter.


TAPPER: Anyway, tell us the "New York Times'" story notwithstanding whom you would pick for Hillary Clinton to be a running mate.

TANDEN: Well, you know, I do think that it's important to speak to the issues, that are important in this campaign so I have two candidates.


TANDEN: You know, I have to say I love all of them.

TAPPER: You love them all equally of course.


TANDEN: Senator Warren and Secretary of Labor Tom Perez are both people who have focused a lot on rising inequality and big champions of addressing the middle class squeeze and so I think they're both fantastic candidates, amongst many.

TAPPER: And they might help Hillary with her left flank a little bit possibly progressives?

TANDEN: Who knows? I think they should -- I do think that you want to think through who can bring attention to the issues and I think they would have great agreement on a strong champion.

TAPPER: Andre, what about you?

BAUER: Well, I think that she, you know, first let's keep in mind she's only been a government employee her whole life and outside of that only on a speaking circuit.

TANDEN: That's not true. That's not true.

TAPPER: She worked for Children's Defense Fund. She worked for the Rose law firm.

Moving on, yes.

BAUER: Yes, yes, yes. I go it. Everything the common man deals with. So she needs a businessperson to balance her. I think Bloomberg is excellent choice. The CEO --

TAPPER: Mike Bloomberg.

BAUER: And somebody that stands up to Bill and doesn't let it be a third for Bill Clinton but it's Hillary Clinton term. And so I would pick a Bloomberg who has actually proven himself in the business world and been able to get elected to office.

TAPPER: Ben, you're a big Bernie Sanders' supporter. So I'm not going to ask you to pick a running mate for Clinton. Bernie Sanders. But let's pick a running mate for Bernie Sanders. Who should he run with?


JEALOUS: Look, you know, I think that we've got to unite our party. Stacey Abrams who's the first woman to lead a party in Georgia's House or Senate. She's the minority leader of the Georgia Assembly. She'll be a rock star just mark my words in two or four years. But, you know, across this country, right now she's a rock star in Georgia, a state we need to take back and quite frankly, we don't talk enough about the rising women rock stars in politics in our country. When you get that list, so Stacey Abrams should absolutely be on that list

TAPPER: All right. Interesting. And who would you pick for the front-runner Hillary Clinton?

HAM: Yes. I think, if you look at the numbers of the head to head contests with any of the Republicans right now I don't think she has to be super exciting and I also don't think she has to be super conservative. So I pick Senator Sherrod Brown from Ohio gives her an Ohio cache but also as a progressive and has a good track record in that community and could maybe throw her some of those votes to pull that together.

TAPPER: One thing I want to bring up is you saw in the interview with Bernie Sanders he really wouldn't aggress the fact that one of his chief surrogates, the fine actress Rosario Dawson brought up Monica Lewinsky.

Let's bring up the context under which Dawson brought up Lewinsky.


ROSARIO DAWSON, ACTRESS, SANDERS SUPPORTER: You're literally under attack for not just supporting the other candidate. Now I'm with Monica Lewinsky with this. Bullying is bad. She's actually dedicated her life now to talking about that, and now as a campaign strategy, we are being bullied.


TAPPER: I have a tough time imagining you, Ben, bringing up Monica Lewinsky in a situation like this as a surrogate of sorts for the Sanders campaign. What do you think of that? JEALOUS: Yes. Actually advanced Clinton back to his home state, you

know, after that scandal. So no, we're bringing up in the context of I know how sensitive it is, at the same time the reality is if you're a Democrat out there for Bernie Sanders and you're of rank or visibility you do get bullied. And I think folks have gotten tired of it.

And, you know, two weeks ago, we were told by the Clinton campaign that they were going to discredit and disqualify our candidate, and they've turned up the heat, frankly, on all of us. So that's what she's responding to.

Now I don't think that she should have brought up Monica's name, but the reality is that there's a dynamic in our party where the folks in the Clinton camp really need to -- you know, they said they'd pick up the piece later. They need to be careful about how many pieces they create.

TANDEN: Who is creating pieces here? I mean, for the love of God, to have a Democrat talk about Monica Lewinsky is outrageous and I think the fact that Ben can't just simply say that's wrong and condemn it is one of the challenges we're going to have going forward.

But I think it's incumbent upon all of us to try and unite. It's going to be harder when you hear things like this. And frankly I want to be honest about this. I think the rhetoric like this has actually -- was one of the reasons why Hillary won New York so well because I think the Sanders campaign was relatively negative and people reacted to it, but hopefully senator Sanders this morning has been, was more positive and I hope we can focus on the issues and not personal character.

TAPPER: Do you think Monica Lewinsky will be brought up by Republicans if Hillary gets the nomination?

BAUER: This is a contact sport. They're not running for the chairman of the garden club --


TAPPER: That's a yes. So that's a yes.

BAUER: They're going to come out with a lot harder stuff than Monica Lewinsky and Trump is going to eat her lunch.

TANDEN: Sure. That doesn't justify Democrats doing it. Republicans are definitely -- make attacks but it's a different thing for Democrats.

BAUER: First of all I don't think --

HAM: It's refreshing to see you guys fighting instead of the two of us but I think there was a better way to make this argument, bring up out the Gloria Steinem quote about the girls (INAUDIBLE).

TANDEN: Sure. HAM: Madeleine Albright saying there's a special place in hell.

But these are things that happen...


HAM: ... person.

JEALOUS: You know, frankly --

TANDEN: You can condemn them.

TAPPER: We have to go I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm being told, we have a commercial break we have to take.

Coming up, Prince played by his own rules and once got him in trouble with the White House. The surprising intersection of Prince and politics.



TAPPER: Welcome back. This week, millions of fans from around the world mourn the sudden death of the music legend Prince.


PRINCE (singing): Purple rain, purple rain, purple rain.


TAPPER: With even President Obama weighing in on Prince's death, it's easy to forget that Prince was once at the center of a full-blown Washington storm. It's the subject of this week's "State of the Cartoonion".


TAPPER (voice-over): This weekend as we all mourn the beloved rock star Prince and contemplate how doves are indeed now crying, it's worth remembering one of the most intriguing roles this maestro played was in politics. Specifically in December 1984 when 11-year-old Karenna Gore asked her mom Tipper, wife of then Senator Al Gore, to buy her the new album "Purple Rain." They put it on and soon enough came track number five "Darling Nikki."

"Purple Rain" was immediately confiscated from the Gore children. And by the next year, Tipper and some other Washington women had formed the Parents Music Resource Center, advocating for parental advisory labels on some albums with adult content, which some stores such as Walmart then refused to sell.

The PMRC put out what they called "The Filthy Fifteen", the most objectionable songs, including Cyndy Lauper's "She-Bop," Twisted Sister's "We're Not Gonna Take It," and the number one on "The Filthy Fifteen" Prince's "Darling Nikki."


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Somebody please think of the children!

TAPPER: It was a brutal chapter in the culture wars at the time. Though in retrospect, both the controversial songs and the warning label sticker may seem like not that big a deal 30 years later. Prince, of course, remains a huge deal.

Rest in peace, your purpleness.


TAPPER: And don't forget this Tuesday, CNN will have special coverage of Super Tuesday number four. Five states. Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Maryland, Delaware, and Connecticut will head to the polls. And you can watch it all unfold right here on CNN.

Thanks for spending your Sunday with us. You can catch me here every Sunday and week days on "THE LEAD" at 4:00 p.m. Eastern. I'm Jake Tapper in Washington.

"FAREED ZAKARIA GPS" starts next.