Return to Transcripts main page
Clinton and Sanders to Debate in Brooklyn on April 14; Counting Down to the Crucial Wisconsin Primaries; "SNL" Indicates Trouble for Donald Trump with Women; Melania Trump Stumps for Donald. Aired 10-11p ET
Aired April 4, 2016 - 22:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[22:00:00] DON LEMON, CNN HOST: Here's our breaking news tonight. Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders will go head to head right here on CNN in a primetime debate in Brooklyn on April 14th.
This is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Don Lemon.
We're also counting down to the crucial Wisconsin primaries just hours away. Ted Cruz is giving Donald Trump a run for his money in Wisconsin. Is the front-runner headed for a fall?
And meanwhile, Donald Trump says he's the only one who can save America's economy and get us out of debt. Why even some experts on the right aren't buying that one.
Plus, you know you've arrived when SNL has a little fun with you. Kate Bolduan and Scottie Nell Hughes, come on down.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There has been a lot of violence at Trumps' rally recently. His campaign manager was arrested for assaulting a woman, a young girl who was pepper sprayed.
SCOTTIE NELL HUGHES, TEA PARTY NEWS NETWORK NEWS DIRECTOR: Donald Trump does not personally condemn violence.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Well, let's just randomly see what's happening right now at his rally.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: There's a lot going on tonight. I want to go right to CNN's senior political correspondent Brianna Keilar. She is in Milwaukee for us this evening. Good evening to you, Brianna. Big debate news tonight. The Clinton and Sanders campaign agreed to another debate, this one before that critical primary in New York. Tell us the details.
BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's going to be on April 14th and it's going to be in Brooklyn, which is interesting because that's where Hillary Clinton has her campaign headquarters and that's where Bernie Sanders grew up. So, both of these candidates have a personal connection to where this debate is going to be held.
The other really interesting thing of course is that it's going to be on CNN and our own Wolf Blitzer is going to be moderating it. This is a debate that came together, Don, after a whole lot of back and forth. Kind of, I guess, you could say testy back and forth between the Sanders and the Clinton campaign.
Sanders had offered to do it on a day two days before the April 19th New York primary. Hillary Clinton said, you know, what let's do it April 14th. But that was actually a day that Bernie Sanders had a permit to do a big rally in Washington Square Park there by NYU. So, he didn't want to go ahead and do it.
But in this debate, I think Bernie Sanders has not much to lose and a whole lot to gain and ultimately, he capitulated. He got a little help from the mayor moving his event a day earlier and so that's why we'll see it on the 14th.
LEMON: Testy. You're such a word smith. Because there are other words that some other people are probably use to describe that. But good way of putting it, Brianna. You know, Sanders is neck and neck with Hillary Clinton in Wisconsin and he is predicting if he wins there and New York, he's on his way to the White House. I mean, how much would a Wisconsin win help Sanders in New York?
KEILAR: Well, it would essential and a big Wisconsin win would be essential. When you look at the math right now and he's trailing by a couple hundred delegates behind Hillary Clinton. He has to not only win, continue to win because this one several contests. But he would have to win by considerable margins. That's almost an impossible fit for him.
But what he's saying his plan is to win in Wisconsin and then hopes that that gives him a bounce going into New York. We're looking at some polls there and you see Hillary Clinton is very concerned about making sure that that stays in her column, Don.
She came to Wisconsin on Saturday. But she's been spending a lot of time in New York. Bernie Sanders is hoping that data about 12-point margin that we're seeing there in the polls in New York, that that would get squeezed out if he were to come in with a little bit of momentum.
And New York is huge. Its 247 delegates awarded proportionately, though. So again, he would have to really outdo Hillary Clinton in her adopted home state to head towards the nomination.
LEMON: All right. Let's keep talking about the Hillary Clinton campaign. Because the campaign sent out this e-mail to supporters today, OK. And it read, "Friend, two quick updates, first, we're down in almost every poll in Wisconsin. Tomorrow's primary is going to be a tough fight. Second, the Sanders campaign raised over $43 million in March making that the third month in a row that they've outraised us. This nomination isn't locked up yet, and we've got to keep fighting for every vote if we want to see Hillary Clinton in the White House."
So, Brianna, Sanders has been saying Hillary Clinton is nervous. Is she?
KEILAR: I think she would like to be able to pivot to the general election. And even though the delegate numbers are in her favor when it comes to her primary competition with Bernie Sanders, look at how much money he has. He has outraised her by several million dollars in the last few months and that is the money that keeps him going.
[22:05:03] He's also getting a lot of donations from small dollar donors. So, maybe someone throws $10 his way. You know, they throw 60 bucks his way. They -- he can keep coming back to those donors and getting more money.
So, it's kind of this -- you know, it's like an ATM for him that isn't running out of cash. And so, that's why he's saying that he can go all the way to the convention. He has the money to do it. So, that's something I think that makes Hillary Clinton nervous.
I think the campaign thinks that they are going to win, Don.
KEILAR: I think that's pretty clear to them. They feel like her lead is insurmountable. But they also know that they have to compete against him and he has all of this money to keep going.
LEMON: Yes, 43...
KEILAR: In that regard, I think they are a little bit nervous about dealing with that.
LEMON: Yes 43 or $44 million in March by his campaign. That's a lot. And plus, you know, they had said, well, the Clinton campaign they are going to wrap it up by March and they've moved it back to April. And now, you know, who knows, Brianna. Thank you, Brianna Keilar. I appreciate it.
KEILAR: You bet.
LEMON: All right. If anybody has a crystal ball in this campaign, it's Larry Sabato. He's the director of the Central for Politics at the University of Virginia and he joins me now. Good evening, sir. You know, we're down to the wire in Wisconsin. The polls show that Cruz leading. He is leading but do you think Donald Trump can pull it out, pull out a win?
LARRY SABATO, VIRGINIA UNIVERSITY CENTER FOR POLITICS DIRECTOR: Well, it's certainly possible because the polls have been wrong so often throughout this primary season. But if you go by the polling averages, then Cruz ought to win.
Some of the polls have had him way up, others have had him up only a little. And a straight poll or two have had Trump up. So, you know, take your pick. It's election eve. I think people ought to be able to dream.
LEMON: I like that quote. There are 44 delegates at stake in Wisconsin but those delegates seem to have, you know, outsized importance here. Can Trump get to this magic number of 1,237 if he loses Wisconsin, Larry?
SABATO: Yes. He can still do it. It just becomes more difficult. He has to do better than expected in California, for example, which I think is going to prove to be the critical race coming June 7th.
That's going to determine whether he gets over that 1237 mark or whether he falls a few dozen short of the mark that will enable him to win on the first ballot, which is probably the only ballot he can win.
LEMON: OK. So, let's look forward. We're at 95 delegates up for grabs. If Trump is defeated, what will it mean for the next big contest in New York where those 95 delegates are awarded?
SABATO: Don, surprisingly, I don't think it's going to mean that much. You know, this is not to dis the Wisconsin primary. It's great state, great primary. But something that I've learned over many cycles, every primary day is the most important primary day there has ever been in the history of the country until the next one.
And it's two weeks away. That's plenty of time for the victory of whoever wins to fade a bit. And it's not going to have quite the impact we think because New York is going to vote as New York wants, not as Wisconsin did.
LEMON: Let's talk about this possibility of a contested convention that everyone is talking about. Because here are candidates, they're in a dogfight. Every delegate, you know, counts at this point.
Trump is 740. Cruz is 474 and Kasich is 145. That's by CNN count. So, by CNN's count as well, Trump needs 57 percent of the remaining delegates, Cruz needs 88 percent, Kasich needs 125, meaning you can't mathematically get to 1237. So, then the likelihood, in your estimation, that there's going to be a contested convention?
SABATO: Honestly, it is right on the edge of the fence post, Don. As we said, Trump has to win 1237 on the first ballot. He's either going to come into the convention a few dozen short or he's going to come in with a handful over.
And he better make sure that that handful shows up and that there isn't any blue flew or I guess since it's republicans red flew, where some of the delegates who may not be for him somehow don't appear and the alternates don't appear either.
There are all kinds of tricks that can occur. It's probably going to make the convention exciting, whether he's over or under 1237.
LEMON: OK. So, you published Sabato's crystal ball. It's very early but you've got a projection of how would win the electoral college in a hypothetical contest between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. You project Clinton's total is 347 electoral votes, which includes 190 state, 57 likely and 100 that lean her direction.
You project Trump has a total of 191, 142 state, 48 likely, can win. So, that's a devastating picture for Donald Trump. Why so lopsided?
SABATO: Well, we use the national polling averages, the state polls and polling averages where they exist and also the demographics, the changing demographics, minority compositions, for example, of the states. And, if anything, we may have been a little generous to Donald Trump.
[22:09:59] Now, his total, 191, is below Romney's 206 electoral votes. So, that's not an impressive performance. It isn't that far off Romney's pace. It's seven months to go, Don, and we're going to revise that map several times I'm sure between now and November but it is impossible, based on the data we have right now, to reach any conclusion other than the one we've reached. We couldn't find a single swing state that would move to Donald Trump. The numbers are the numbers.
LEMON: That's a trouncing. That is a trouncing. OK. Thank you, Larry. I appreciate it. I'll see you soon.
SABATO: Thank you, Don.
LEMON: Joining me now, Trump supporter, Diana Orrock and RNC national committee woman for Nevada. You heard what he just said. What do you make of what Larry just said, Diana? Good evening, by the way.
DIANA ORROCK, RNC NATIONAL COMMITTEEWOMAN: Good evening. Thanks for having me. You know, Trump has been full of surprises from the get-go and I think everybody realizes that and just when everybody in the media is saying this is going to be the outcome, the exact opposite happens. So, you just can't count anything out with Mr. Trump.
LEMON: So let's reiterate. You're a delegate and you're a supporter of Donald Trump. The Cleveland convention, Diana, is shaping up to be a bruising fight. So what do you expect to see?
ORROCK: Well, you know, we don't know at this point yet whether Donald Trump will get the magic 1237 going into the national convention. It very well could be an open convention and, if so, we'll just have to go through the process of having several ballots and see what happens.
LEMON: Yes. So, there is an all-out fight for the allegiance of delegates going to this convention. If no one has a 1237 delegates and no one gets a magic number on this first ballot.
LEMON: A lot of people are wondering if Trump can hold the loyalty of his delegates. What do you think?
ORROCK: Well, I have found his supporters to be very loyal and people came out of the woodwork to be delegates for Donald Trump and I think they are going to hold true to their first vote and keep on until the bitter end.
LEMON: You know he is claiming that the RNC is unfair and that Ted Cruz is stealing his delegates, particularly in Louisiana. You have been involved in the Republican Party and
Republican Party politics for a long time. Is this year any different than any previous years?
ORROCK: Well, at the last national convention that I attended in 2012, I wasn't a delegate. I had just assumed my duties as a newly elected national committeewoman.
But what I witnessed at that convention, I found appalling with the microphones on the floor to the delegates being cut off after the pre- scripted outcome that John Boehner had on the vote to accept the rules going into the national convention.
And then the rules changes that occurred. There was lots of games that were played to make the outcome other than what it should have been simply to keep Ron Paul off of the ballot. And I just don't think those kinds of things should be done and I fully anticipate that those kinds of tactics could very well come into play in this convention going into Cleveland.
LEMON: And so, OK. So, then if he then loses -- and that happens, you know, in Cleveland and something happens and he doesn't get the 1237, if he then loses, do you think he's going to walk out or run as a third-party candidate?
ORROCK: That could be very likely.
LEMON: Would you then support him?
ORROCK: I think in this place in time, in this country, I think we need somebody like Donald Trump and I would be willing to support him even if he went third party. And, you know, that might sound like an appalling for a nationally, you know, a national committeewoman to say for the Republican Party.
But, you know, I've heard all sorts of stories about trying to possibly bring Paul Ryan into the mix with several ballots that may not show somebody being the front-runner or a Mitt Romney.
I think that would be an absolutely horrible idea and I think it would create absolute chaos at that convention because nobody wants a Paul Ryan or a Mitt Romney coming into the mix.
LEMON: Yes. Well, you said it sounds like a horrible thing to say butt it's honest and we appreciate that here on the show. So, Diana Orrock, thank you.
ORROCK: You're very welcome.
LEMON: When we come back, women voters just might be the key to this election and that could mean trouble for Donald Trump. Just take a look at Saturday Night Live. They are having a little fun at the candidate's expense.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[22:15:08] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: At least Donald is talking about women. I mean, he is creating a dialogue about women.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, yes, yes. Let's go back to that rally and check in on that dialogue.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When I say women, you say suck. Women.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Suck.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Women.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Suck.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Well, Wisconsin primary be the turning point in the GOP race and Donald Trump has defied conventional wisdom from day one. But is that changing after his missteps on the campaign trail?
I want to talk about that now CNN political commentator Carl Bernstein, the author of "A Woman I Charge, the Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton," and senior political analyst, Mr. David Gergen.
Carl, you think that we're starting to see the implosion of Donald Trump but he warned that dismissing him never pays off. Listen. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: And everybody said, that's the end of Trump. It's over for Trump. Do you know how many times I've been given the end? Like I've been given the last rights. How many times?
[22:20:01] Like, 10, every week, it's like, it's the end of Trump. Then they walk in and sir, I don't know what happened. But your poll numbers just went through the roof, sir.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Carl, what's different this time?
CARL BERNSTEIN, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, I've been wrong most of the time through this. But I think that the accumulated events of the last three weeks or so, the KKK references, abortion, the fact that he can't handle foreign policy, the shallowness of his answers, the problems with his business, the misogyny, I've referred to him as a new fascist in terms of his authoritarian pronouncements, not a Hitler but authoritarian, be a big, strong man. I think we're beginning to see implosion in terms of can he get to the convention with enough delegates to be the nominee only if he wins Wisconsin and I don't think he's going to win Wisconsin.
LEMON: What do you make of that, David? Because he's hoping for a Wisconsin surprise.
DAVID GERGEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, sure. He better hope for it or he may better pray for it because he's behind there. He's been steadily behind for the last few weeks. He once have 10- point lead there.
GERGEN: He's now down 5 or 10.
LEMON: Do you agree with what Carl said. I don't think it's an implosion. I do think the tide has changed. I think the tide is going out for it and for a lot of the reasons that Carl just cited.
GERGEN: I don't think there's an implosion because there aren't primary is coming up. The New York primary is coming up. He's got a very big lead there. Pennsylvania, he's got a very sizeable lead. California, he still has a significant lead.
What I do think Wisconsin is important for, if Ted Cruz wins Wisconsin, I think he comes out as the favorite to win the nomination. I say this because Trump will not have enough delegates.
BERNSTEIN: You don't think there's a real possibility that there would be a deadlock convention that they would go for a Paul Ryan or somebody like that?
GERGEN: Well, that depends on the rules but if the Trump and the Cruz forces come together and keep the rules as they are presently written on who can be nominated, it's going to come down to only Trump and Cruz.
LEMON: Well, let's take off Cruz about that. Then we'll continue the conversation. I want you to hear Ted Cruz and then we'll finish discussing this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. TED CRUZ, (R-TX) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You know, this fever pipe dream of Washington that at the convention they will parachute in, some white knight who will save the Washington establishment, it is nothing less than a pipe dream. It is not going to happen. If it did, the people would quite rightly revolt.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: A revolt? I'm sure Donald Trump will agree with that. Go ahead and continue your response. GERGEN: He said there were going to be riots as Trump said.
GERGEN: But here's the thing. I think they are going to have enough delegates between them to pretty well keep control of the rules convention, the rules. And if they keep the rules, it has to be either Trump or Cruz and I do not think if it gets to that point, it's going to be Trump.
I think there are so many, quote, "faithless" delegates that will go over to Cruz. I think Cruz's chances go up a lot. Because it doesn't guarantee anything. There's no guarantee in this thing, but I do think the chances of Cruz winning the nomination...
LEMON: Carl, you heard the Donald Trump supporter earlier on saying, you know, that she saw the shenanigans that happened with Paul Ryan -- not Paul Ryan but with Ron Paul, and so on a and so forth. So, how careful does the establishment have to be if this particular situation if this done happen?
BERNSTEIN: Well, very, I'm not sure that the establishment in quotes is quite that coherent either. Dare I say one other thing about Donald Trump? That he has demonstrated and appealed that all of us have underestimated. And I think it has to do...
LEMON: Speak for yourself. But go ahead.
BERNSTEIN: No. Ok. But I think beyond the 20 percent of the angry white males or angry people, I think it has to do with he has identified in saying that America is not great. The institutions in this country are broken.
Our education system, our transportation system, our banking system, our medical care system. And there are an awful lot of people between the two coasts particularly who identify with this. Some of this are democrats. And I think we have grossly underestimated how he has tapped into the reality. He might not have solutions.
LEMON: But does...
GERGEN: Doesn't this contradict your other point, that he's imploding?
BERNSTEIN: No, because I think that he has gone too far himself to broaden his base. He was on verge -- I would have said that four weeks ago he was on the march.
LEMON: OK. So, here's the...
BERNSTEIN: And then -- and then he blew it. But the -- opening up to his base to these disaffected people who rightly say, hey, the elites, we've had it with the elites.
LEMON: Listen to me, guys, listen, please. Is that a reality? Because he's saying make America great again. You said institutions are broken. I would -- you know, most people would say, not broken but America isn't perfect. There's certainly room for improvement.
If you look at, right, this make America great again, if you look at eight years ago when President Obama took office and you look at the economy now, you look at jobs, the price of gas, you look at health care, not perfect, there are some who would say the president has made America great again so then what is Donald Trump's point? Is that a reality for those people?
[22:25:07] GERGEN: But what we know is there's a question that is asked regularly that is used as a gauge of the public sentiment by how well we are doing. There's a question are we on the right track or the wrong track?
And for 10 years, basically, we've been, the people have been saying the wrong track. They have been voting or been rejecting the status quo. And that is, yes, if you look overall, it is better.
But who's getting the benefits and who is staying stuck? And to go to Carl's point, there are a lot of people that are stuck. Bill Clinton has been arguing, 80 percent of the people in this country have not gotten a pay raise since the deep recession of 2008, 2009. Eighty percent.
BERNSTEIN: It's actually 30 years that real income has been stagnating and going down in this country. I agree with you about Obama. Been heroic in many -- in many regards. But in terms of where -- and I believe America is a great country.
We still have this intangibles that make us great. But are we the country we were, do our institutions work the way they should and the way they once did?
BERNSTEIN: No. He said tap into it.
LEMON: Hold your thoughts because we're coming back. Now I want you guys to stay with me. Up next, Donald Trump's dire prediction for America's economy. We've been talking a little about it now. Has he gone too far this time?
[22:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
LEMON: Let's discuss the economy a bit more because Donald Trump claims America's economy is on the verge of falling off a cliff.
Back with me now, Carl Bernstein and David Gergen. So, Carl, Trump told The Washington Post he's predicting another recession. He expanded on that today. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: We've had bubbles and when they burst, it's not a good thing. And what I said is we're going to go into a massive recession. But I also say, if I'm president, that's not going to happen. Because I'm going to straighten things out before it happens.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Economists disagree. Carl, do you think it's dangerous for Trump to say these things?
BERNSTEIN: I don't think he knows what he's talking about. I don't think he's got no more idea about solid economic policy than the man on the moon. And what he was saying was absolutely preposterous there. In fact, his numbers I think everyone I've seen have said that with any kind of authorities says, look, he would increase the deficit, not cut it by what -- by what he was proposing.
Also, there's a myth about his business sense. His businesses have been -- many of them belly up. He has settled with 20 cents on the dollar on many of his loans. He's not this great businessman. He's got -- and we're going to see a lot more stories about this. A lot of this is mythological.
LEMON: Yes. He disagree. Donald Trump disagrees with that. And he has fought back saying, you know what, that's not true.
BERNSTEIN: Talk with Deutsch Bank and ask about his Deutsch Bank loans and how much he owes Deutsch Bank.
LEMON: Go ahead, David.
GERGEN: I just want to go back to the economy, the state of the economy. It's really been striking to me that Barons, which is basically a business newspaper for investors that comes out once a week, they compared Hillary's economic plan to Trump and said which one would be better for the economy?
Overwhelmingly, they came out and said Hillary would be better. I've talked to the investment groups, I've covered and showed hands, who do you think is better for the economy, who is better for the markets? Overwhelmingly, it's Hillary.
Now what are they saying? Apparently they are saying look, his economic plan will raise the deficit by $10 trillion. He's not able to pay for that. He wants to get into a trade war with China and with Mexico. What they are saying is, yes, you will get a recession. If you elect Trump, you'll get a recession. That's what they are arguing.
BERNSTEIN: But on trade, I think both he and Bernie sanders have hit a real nerve and have rightly identified that globalization has not been moderated in a way that has benefited American workers.
LEMON: OK. BERNSTEIN: That's the real issue.
LEMON: I want to talk about the democrats now. Bernie Sanders is in Wisconsin. Hillary Clinton is in New York defending her home turf. Her campaign clearly never thought that it would come to this. So what happened here?
GERGEN: What happens now?
LEMON: What happened here? Why don't they think it would come to this? Why is she now -- she's in her adopted home state, defending her home turf.
LEMON: Who would have thought?
GERGEN: Well, I think that the, you know, there was a fascinating piece out today with Bernie Sanders himself and the people around him think that he fundamentally misjudged the beginning of this campaign. He didn't go out and campaign hard enough in 2015.
He didn't -- he didn't get his organization together. He didn't understand. He wanted to win the first three states but he basically, I think did the right thing as a senator and that is, he wanted to work in the Senate at the same time and not give up his day job, and I think it was the right thing to do. But it probably cost him to the nomination.
LEMON: She keeps trying to pivot to the general, right. She keeps wanting to pivot to the general and her campaign said we'll have this wrapped up by March. Do you remember that? And they're saying April. They said April. But now they're not so sure.
BERNSTEIN: Well, if he wins Wisconsin tomorrow, he comes into New York very strong and it could be a hell of a fight in New York and he's got more money and he regards than she does. She also, she's got a lead...
GERGEN: She got a big help release out there.
GERGEN: She was a good senator. She was a good senator.
BERNSTEIN: She was a very good senator but she's also got that vote on the war. She's got a lot of vulnerability on trust issues increasingly and the longer this goes, the more this question of distrust, honesty, openness works against her.
LEMON: Here's what Karl Rove wrote about her in The New York Times. He says and he talks about the -- Karl Rove in The New York Times. He talks about the undemocratic aspects of the Democratic Party's nomination process. He points to the super delegates who aren't bound to the popular vote and the unfairness of the caucuses which often have restricted ours. So, what do you think about that?
GERGEN: I disagree.
LEMON: You disagree. Why?
GERGEN: I disagree. Well, for a couple of reasons. First, I think in terms of the Democratic Party, it wouldn't make a difference if you didn't have the super delegates. There's been 35 contests so far. Lany Davis I heard one of his, you know...
LEMON: Be nice, Carl.
GERGEN: Yes. That's right. Journalist against the -- yes.
GERGEN: So, he points out, if you look at the overall votes in 35 states and primaries and caucuses, she has won the vote by 58 to 42, 58 to 42.
[22:35:02] So, there's no wonder the super delegates going forward. But the bigger issue that I would have with Charles, and you may disagree Carl and you may agree. I think actually peer review is a very good thing in the way you choose leaders.
GERGEN: And so, yes, we want the voters should have a voice but I think having the peers should have a significant voice and be part of that is I think it's important. I'll tell you, if they had the super delegates on the republican side, I think this race would be very different. I don't think you'd see Ted Cruz nor Donald Trump with the lead that they have right now.
LEMON: That's the last word. Thank you, gentlemen.
GERGEN: Thank you.
LEMON: Always a great conversation. Good to have you.
BERNSTEIN: OK. Thank you.
LEMON: Coming up, Donald Trump had a rough week and it didn't exactly end on a high note. SNL having a little fun with his re-tweet comparing Heidi Cruz and Melania Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But that was an accident, OK, because Donald's pens are just so big, he can't see every little tweet his fingers retweet.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Donald Trump is trying to recover from what many are calling his worst week ever. It wasn't the best weekend for some of his supporters, supporters either.
[22:40:01] Joining me now is Scottie Nell Hughes, chief political commentator for USA Radio Network and a Trump surrogate of course. Also with me, Juliette Kayyem, the author of "Security Mom, an Unclassified Guide to Protecting Homeland and your Home," right? And Margaret Hoover, republican consultant and Sirius XM host. Security mom.
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Let's do it again.
MARGARET HOOVER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Security mom.
LEMON: From that (ph) tomorrow.
KAYYEM: Thank you very much. I can't wait to rad that.
LEMON: Well, let's go -- yes, I can't wait to read that. OK, Scottie. Let's go Scottie first. You know we have to start with that SNL skit that had made so much fun at your expense. And I know you took it in good humor. But let's look at it and then we'll talk about it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Joining me to talk about it from the Tea Party News network is Donald Trump defender Scottie Nell Hughes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, Kate. As a woman, I like Donald Trump but as a full-blown nut job, I flicking love him.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Well, we actually have a clip of Donald talking about his daughter from O'Reilly this morning. Let's watch.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've just got to say, isn't my daughter Ivanka the best? She's so smart, so talented and what a rack.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No. OK. No. So that was beautiful. You're just trying to work it but is it worth it? You put his thing down, flipped and reversed it.
You can't break me, Kate, because I'm crazy and crazy don't rise. And Kate, I know that you agree with me on three things when it comes to Trump. One, he is drop-dead gorgeous.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Two, he is bringing trade back so we can make America great again.
And three, he is way better than Ted Cruz.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Yes. That I do agree on.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Oh, Scottie. Every time I watch this I know you didn't expect it but I hope you're taking this with a good sense of humor because, I mean, it's SNL.
KAYYEM: I think it's flattering.
LEMON: You have a right. You have a right.
SCOTTIE NELL HUGHES, TEA PARTY NEWS NETWORK NEWS DIRECTOR: Absolutely. I mean, come on, some of the John Doe, I mean, some of the best have been impersonation on SNL and I'm sorry, I really do want to make Americans grapes again. I mean, I am definitely pro grape juice. That is one thing I think all of us can agree on this panel.
LEMON: Well, what about the full nut job thing? Does that bother you?
HUGHES: You know, you kind of get over it. I mean, hello, I represented the Tea Party starting it. I mean, I've been used to calling all of the crazy adjectives that have used for conservatives for so long. So, no, it really didn't. I'm not anti-squirrel or anything.
LEMON: Are you going to go back to the old hair like they did in that skit?
HUGHES: That hair was so 2015, folks.
LEMON: But it was you. I mean, it was you to a Tea, I've got to tell you in 2015, come on now, the tan and everything.
HUGHES: I'm sorry. I mean, listen, that was so Fox News. Hello now, I'm on CNNN. I mean, we do the CNN haircut over here right now.
LEMON: So, I've got to ask you. So, when people say the truth is often spoken in jest, do you ever, do look at that and go, some things that I have to defend and I'm not sure how I have to do it? Do you see why people may be making fun of you or you don't -- you don't believe that?
HUGHES: I mean, on your show I think I've admitted a couple of times the things that I don't agree with. I don't like the attacks that go after the superficial way that anybody looks, especially a fellow woman who I believe is a powerful woman like Heidi Cruz.
I mean, I've often said that I don't agree with some of the things that Mr. Trump does. But sometimes I do. And I look at the overall picture, which is why I support Mr. Trump for president.
I think that he's going to bring jobs back to America, he's going to keep my family safe and I think he's what's best for our country to challenge the status quo of the Republican Party everything.
LEMON: Margaret, do you think that it was mean-spirited the portrayal?
HOOVER: Look, I think Scottie is taking it exactly how she should, with a total laugh. And look, I'm actually surprised they actually named you as the contributor. You would think they would some generic Trump defender rather than actually name you.
But I think Scottie, you've taken run with it like you're doing. I mean, all press is good press. If you're like Donald Trump, you just run with it. But why I -- Scottie raised a point, too. And I think it's important for all of us who are analyzing this election, to separate the Trump supporters from Donald Trump.
I mean, the Trump supporters are actually representing real angst, real grievances that are having the economy, real problems that we have with our electoral system as the Republican Party.
And Donald Trump I think has just filled that vacuum but this is not to -- and Scottie has admitted. I mean, she does not defend all of the indefensible things that Donald Trump have said.
LEMON: Do you think conservative women get a bad rap when it comes to comedians?
HOOVER: Yes. I don't think there's no question. I mean, I think there's no question. I think conservative women probably do get parodied and sneered up more.
LEMON: Conservatives in general. Do you think that conservatives.
LEMON: Because I've watched them in the late shows and you see conservatives getting land blasted all the time. And even when it's taken out of context. I'll watch because I'm a news person, I'll watch some of these shows. It's funny, I mean, it sounds like the daily show and all those issues but it's not in context. It's not really but it's funny and so you take the joke and you move on.
[22:45:04] HOOVER: And like if you're a conservative, you have to learn to laugh at yourself, right?
HOOVER: You can't be so uptight that you're not going to enjoy...
KAYYEM: I think it was going to (Inaudible).
LEMON: I was just going to ask you to -- I was just going to ask you, security mom, what do you think? Your book comes out tomorrow, "Security Mom."
KAYYEM: It's a great book. Buy it and read it.
LEMON: Yes. What do you think make of this?
KAYYEM: Look, you know, I thought it was hilarious. I think a lot of Trump supporters do find it difficult to criticize him. I mean, you know, it's like they drink some Kool-Aid and I don't know enough Scottie. I didn't know whether that's true enough with her.
But I do think that that was fair reflection of a lot of Trump supporters. But where I want to defend Scottie and others is it is very wrong to view all Trump supporters as crazy. And I think it's wrong for democrats to do that and I think it's wrong for the media to do that.
He has walked into a vacuum filled by politics today, particularly Republican Party, that they are trying to figure out how this happened. But he also is filling a vacuum when it comes to issues of security or immigration that we thought had been resolved.
I mean, we all left the last election saying, every party is going to have to embrace immigration. So, in some ways, we have to also learn from this that he...
LEMON: All right. Stand by, everyone. Speaking of women, right, speaking of women, his secret weapon, so to speak is coming up next, his wife Melania. She's out speaking at the campaign. We'll talk about that.
[22:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
LEMON: Back with me now, Scottie Nell Hughes, Juliette Kayyem, and Margaret Hoover. So, Juliette, let's talk about your new book, "Security Mom, An Unclassified Guide to Protecting our Homeland and your Home". So, tiger moms and with all these other moms, so what's a security mom?
KAYYEM: I know. "Security Mom" it's a term, a demographic after 2001 terrorist attacks that emerged and to describe women mostly suburban women, married with children who were so afraid and they were so afraid and that they would ultimately would vote more conservative or for the candidate who made them feel stronger and safer.
And that sort of do a twist in that term given my life in homeland security and counterterrorism, and give women and men and security uncle and aunts sort of the tools of both explaining what this world of counterterrorism and homeland security is like bring it down to earth, but also how we can engage in it on a very personal level which we do every single way anyway. LEMON: That's a very interesting and different take on this. You said
that these women are one issue voters.
LEMON: So, you said one issue voters. They don't vote on traditional, quote, "women's issues." What do they vote on?
KAYYEM: Security. Keep me safe.
LEMON: Just security?
KAYYEM: A guy keep me safe. And that is actually if you look at Trump female supporters, the number one issue they care about, security. And they view him as the most -- sort of, you know, the tough guy who's going to protect them.
Now, of course, it's all silliness at some stage because no president can guarantee perfect security and that's also one of my messages. Look, 9/11 made us think that we were perfectly safe on 9/10. It's just not true.
This country has always been vulnerable. We try to reduce the vulnerability as we do both, you know, in the homeland and our home. But the Trump female supporter puts security as number one.
LEMON: OK. So, then Scottie, to you, since Juliette said that are these the women that Trump is counting on?
HUGHES: I think absolutely. I mean, I'm going to buy the book tomorrow to be honest because I fall into that category. I think it's being able to provide for my family and keep my family safe. I've said that all along. The main two reasons why I support Trump.
Listen, my kids have gizmos on their arms that they are like watches that they wear to school, that if they need me, they press the button and it goes directly to my cell phone. And I'm a working mom. So, that's like my peace of mind, it's more for me than them.
I think there are parents that are scared right now. When we do live in an age of school shootings and terrorism and, you know, we do have a very interesting dynamic where mainly both parents are working right now, where if something happens at school, or something happens at this world the first it's not like you can easily go find your child.
You have to get off work, finds transportation. It's a whole different world that we're living in.
HUGHES: So, I think her book hits it on the head.
LEMON: Is the party speaking to this women or not, Margaret?
HOOVER: Look, I think the Republican Party has a wide variety of sort platforms or structures, but it has always been sort of the security party, right? I mean, one of the things that George W. Bush ran on in 2004 successfully was security. He had his cohorts of security moms that actually turned out and voted for him in bulk and that was sort of was a clear republican demographic that was identified and then maybe not kept in 2008.
But, I mean, the question sort of defies logic that Donald Trump is clearly the candidate but he keep loving and Scottie has made this point that of course, that's why she's supporting Donald Trump, becomes his strong hand.
But policies aren't policies that are not necessarily make us stronger. If you got of NATO, if you have a nuclear proliferation and arms race in Southeast Asia and then the Middle East, I mean, this is not going to make our world stronger.
So, it would be great to like get on to actually debating the policies and what's going to make our world stronger.
LEMON: I've got to get in. I've got to move on, I'm sorry. Because I want to talk about Melania Trump who was out on the campaign made an appearance on the campaign trail today. She spoke to her husband's event in Wisconsin. So, let's listen a little bit.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MELANIA TRUMP, DONALD TRUMP'S WIFE: As you know by now, when you attack him, he will punch back 10 times harder.
No matter who you are, a man or a woman, he treats everyone equal.
He's a fighter and if you elect him to be our president, he will fight for you and for our country. He will work for you and with you. And together we will make America strong and great again. Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Melania Trump, going to help her husband on women's issues. Scottie?
HUGHES: I think it's a great idea. I think she's a very classy. I think she's a great example right now of how Mr. Trump appreciates and respects women, especially like his wife, like his daughter, the women in his own family, the women in his own corporation.
I think that was a great speech. She obviously has it very well thought out and very classy. Sometimes I think Mr. Trump sometimes might actually listen to his wife a little more in the areas and she's come out and said, I don't always agree with my husband, but like the rest of the campaign says, let Trump be Trump. LEMON: He's been saying that. He's been saying that and she said that
all along for some time now, like I've want him to be more presidential and he says, she's been telling me to be more presidential.
[22:55:04] Ivanka is been telling me to be more presidential. And that hasn't change anything. You really think it's going to make a difference, Margaret?
HOOVER: Well, look, actually, Trump's numbers with republican primary female voters have only come down about 10 percentage points in the last couple of months.
LEMON: Do you think he could get it if he show more contrition would help.
HOOVER: No, I don't think it's the republican women. It's not the republican women that you're going after. The problem is the women in the general election. I mean, that's the real problem. You've got to win more than Mitt Romney won, which is 44 percent. Republicans don't do that well with women as a voting bloc anyway.
So, I mean, the issue is that Donald Trump not with republican primary voters. I think Melania and I think his daughter Ivanka actually are really soften him and do show a softer side. They should roll him out. Is it going to help? I don't think you can come back to a lot of the places.
LEMON: And they're not the candidate. And remember, they are not the candidates.
KAYYEM: No one knows for the...
LEMON: Yes. But remember, this is the book.
HOOVER: But they vote for security.
LEMON: For a security. Yes.
HUGHES: "Security Moms."
LEMON: "Security Mom." Thank you.
KAYYEM: Thank you.
LEMON: It comes out tomorrow. Thank you. Juliette Kayyem's new book. Thank you, everyone. I'll see you soon. We'll be back.
LEMON: So, make sure you stay with CNN for all-day coverage of the Wisconsin presidential primaries. We've got it all covered for you. There are 42 delegates at stake for the republicans. Forty for republicans, 86 when it comes to democrats and it's going to be a battle for every last delegate. We're going to bring you all of the latest. Make sure you tune in all day tomorrow and all night.
That is it for us tonight. Thank you so much for watching. "AC360" with Mr. Anderson Cooper starts right now.
[23:00:02] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)