tv Washington Week With Gwen Ifill PBS August 5, 2016 7:30pm-8:01pm PDT
gwen: donald trump stumbles. hillary clinton's bounce. but it's just august, right? tonight on "washington week." >> donald trump is not qualified to be president and he is temperamently unfit to be commander in chief. >> we're running against a rigged system and against a very dishonest media the >> i think the republican nominee is unfit to run as president. >> barack obama knows something about being woefully unprepared to be president of the united states the gwen: donald trump under fire. feuding with gold star parents, with house speaker paul ryan and generally pan riking many republicans who have already in -- endorsed him. >> improper it is to ever
disparage the families and those who are serving in the michael and who have sacrificed. gwen: another week unlike any we have ever seen. we take a look inside the latest twists and turns with doyle mcmanus of "the los angeles times" doyle mcmanus. manu raju, senior congressional correspondent for cnn, philip rucker of "the washington post," and alexis simendinger of real clear politics. announcer: award-winning reporting and analysis, covering history as it happens. live from our nation's capital this is "washington week" with gwen ifill. funding for "washington week" s provided by --
>> thousands of people came out today to run the race for retirement. so we asked them, are you completely prepared for retirement? ok, mostly prepared -- prepared? uld you save 1% more of your income? it doesn't sound like much, but saving an additional 1% now could make a big difference over time. >> i'm going to be even better about saving. you can do it. it helps in the long run. >> prudential the announcer: additional funding s provided by the xq institute. newman's own foundation,
donating all profit from food products to charity and nourishing the common good. the ford foundation. the ethics and excellence in journalism foundation. and koo and patdrishra yuen through the yuen foundation. committed to bridge cultural differences in our communities. the corporation for public broadcasting and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. once again, live from washington, moderator gwen ifill. gwen: good evening. live by the sword, get poked by the sword. that's what happens when candidates rely too heavily on polls. donald trump more than any candidate this year has cited polls to explain his success. but now the wormed -- worm has turned. a number of post-convention polls out this week tell the story the nbc news/wall street journal has clinton up by nine points.
"the new york times" poll has them tied. in the real clear politics average of polls she's leading by 6.7 points. trump's response? >> i would say right now it's the best in terms of being united that it's been since we began. we're doing incredibly well. we're leading in the state of phil:. ou saw the poll. we're leading in ohio. we're about tied in pennsylvania but i think we're going to be leading the next time. so i think we've never been this united. gwen: well, perhaps that's clear in the polls he sees. real clear politics has clinton leading in all three's -- three of those states. and the palpable nervousness among republicans -- some even going so far as to say they will vote for clinton. i hate to ask this because it seems i ask every week but is this another turning point,
doyle? doyle: i'm going out on a limb and say maybe. because all those numbers were from last weekend. those didn't even absorb the weight of all the mistakes donald trump made this week, which is one of the reasons republicans are afraid he may be in some kind of free fall. gwen: some ended on the 4th the so some may be -- doyle: it got close. but it takes a while for this to work its way through. simply looking at this in a historical perspective i think you have to go back will -- 44 years to be the george mcgovern campaign to find a week in which a nominee has suffered so much self-inflicted damage all at once. could this be a turning point? absolutely. but there are still 90 days left and it's still theoretically possible for mr. trump to get his act together and gack -- back to the fundamentals which made this a
very close race. alexis: one of the things you look at in terms of where he is now is you have to admit that he is still getting big rallies and has gotten a lot of financial support. one ncht caveats we've all been talking about inside our own media organizations is, as doyle says, be careful to lean too far into the future here because he still has a reservoir of support. he is still getting these rallies and the money he reported in july was quite impressive, right? gwen: doctors 80 million. >> and the cash on hand is not that far behind the clinton campaign, even though we would say he's not on the air and he's behind in organization on the ground. it is still possible as doyle is suggesting, i think, for the campaign to shift ahead. now, one of the things we're going to look for nix week is mr. trump has decided to give an economic address next week in detroit. that's the smarty-pants audience there listening to the
nominee's economic plans. we would expect to see him prepare for that and have real tangible proposals to make. so that's another thing to watch but he's trying to take some of this advice. phil: the real nerve-racking part for the trump carpe shall -- campaign it's the polls in the battleground states. that's what makes a lot of republicans nervous. michigan. he's going to detroit but in michigan he thought he could do well there given the economic anxiety felt in the state, rail against trade, but the recent poll there has him down double digits. also in pennsylvania. another state he thought he could do well in in the general election. struggling there and in new hampshire losing and that possibly having a down ticket impact in kelly ayotte, the new hampshire senator now down down in that poll. and today a poll from georgia
having hillary clinton up by four. will those numbers stay there? we don't know. still a lot of time. there could be debates. gwen: but these are not the states in which she was supposed to be leading. phil: that's right. clearly never racking. this and phil stat down week for an interview about so many things. he said -- there is a lot of dirty pool played at the election, meaning the election is rigged. i would not be surprised, the voter i.d., they're fighting as hard as they can fight so you don't have to show voter i.d. so whoo -- what is the purpose of that? how many times say person going to vote in a day? phil, i had trouble getting the inflection right. phil: you were close! gwen: thank you. but what is true about this?
fix he went on in that -- phil: he went on in that strue to say people would be able to vote 10 times in estates that have -- don't have voter i.d.'s. that's just not true. they have a system of making sure people only vote once. i think he's laying the groundwork for, if he loses to hillary clinton, to contest the election and say it was rigged. that's dangerous for the country. we have a history in the country where when candidates lose, they concede graciously. i don't know if we're going to have that here. gwen: when i read the triments of the interviews he does, especially with newspapers and i also see how you were trying to guide him to certain points in and clarity, does it feel that way at the time? >> yes, i went into the interview trying to lead him into a conversation a couple
times but really have him elaborate on things. sometimes he doesn't make his initial point clear. he was pretty distracted, kept looking at himself on the television. but it -- if you look at the transcript it shows what he thinks and what is on his mind. gwen: back to the chauns. the gold -- khans, the gold star couple. trump's comments have cut through in a way that other insults, such as to chris christie and john mccain, have not. why is that, doyle? doyle: one reason is that it was so easy -- the correct and gracious swers -- answer from donald trump was so easy for any normal person to figure out. that is, "i honor their sacrifice and i'm not going to get into a fight with them, we just disagree.
yts "that's what george w. bush did with cindy sheehan in 2004. that's the sorted of again erik lay person -- you don't mess with gold star families. for pigss -- politicians, for other republicans it's actually compounded. because this was such an easy one to figure out a way out of, why turn sb a controversy that went on not just for one day but two, three days. he could have put it to bed in his first interview with george stephanopoulos a week ago. and he didn't. gwen: and then the purple heart recipient said something to the effect, manu, well, this is an easier way to get it, which veterans and others were not thrilled with. >> it also came in the wake of, of course, this fight with the gold star family so it just comtounded -- compounded this certain.
i think in fairness donald trump was not trying belittle the purple heart but it just came across that way. the -- it all underscores the concern in the party that donald trump is just not focusing on what could unit the party, which is hillary clinton. the interparty squabbles, the grk not endorsing paul ryan or mccain. attacking kelly ayotte, this does nothing to serve their cause. donald trump may be listening to some of this criticism because in the last couple days he's been focusing on hillary clinton. he's been going after her so clearly, i think he's recognized it's taken a toll the last couple days. gwen: but we've seen a lot of people jumping ship. paul ryan has said, he has stuck by him. reince priebus has stuck by him even in sticky spots before but these seem like missed opportunities or self-inflicted wounds.
manu: that's right. e khan controversy, people like to see trump attacking people in power or politicians. these are not politicians, these are grieving parents who -- whose son gave his life for the country. for trump to do what he did exposed a sort of lack of decency at the core. sally bradshaw, the long-time bush family advisor withdrew from the republican party is -- and is voting for hillary clinton. gwen: be the president this week, alexis, did a kind of remarkable thing in lock stop as he has been doing with hillary clinton, which is leap at a chance in response to a question in a news conference to declare donald trump unfit for office. i don't think we've ever heard that word between candidates. he's calling her unfit as well
the alexis: it was unprecedented. one was the sitting president of a party taking on the other party nominee and declaring them unfit. and the eagerness to do that while standing next to a visiting head of state at the white house -- gwen: the prime minister of singapore. alexis: there was a state dinner that evening. the president, however, was totally prepared for this question and knew he was going to get it question. gwen: we could kind of tell! [laughter] alexis: and the president was writing and making notes to himself as he sometimes does of things he wants to say and then just marched right into it and as you say was echoing in large measure what hillary clinton, the democratic nominee has been saying the but it was stunning and the president has been continuing to talk about this.
he just did a short press conference at the pentagon this week before leaving for vacation and he, you know, launched into it again that he doesn't trust donald trump to handle nuclear or international policy. that's echoing the clinton campaign again. gwen: well, let's talk about hillary clinton. theoretically if your opponent is is having a bad week, you are having a good one? doyle? doyle: it would have been a monumentally bad week for hillary if donald trump hadn't been absorbing so much coverage. hillary clinton's real problem, she did another interview about the f.b.i. investigation of her emails and she asserted that james comey, the head of the f.b.i., had said she had been completely truthful in everything she said. that's not what james comey said. he said there was no evidence that she had been untruthful in her interview with the f.b.i.
there's a big gulf between those two and she's been called on this several times. she cannot seem to deal with this problem and in a sense it's her equivalent of someone, of donald trump's problem with anyone questioning his judgment or attacking him. she got called on it by reporters. she finally by the end of p the week said she had short-circuited the answer, she had sorted of telescoped it a bit. i think she needs to do better. manu: i'm sorry. and afterwards she still went back and said everything that james comey said confirms what i said to the public and that -- then launched into this very legalistic answer about the emails, a very convoluted, tortured explanation. gwen: i sometimes wonder if that is on purpose, she knows it's con voluntary -- convoluted and twisted and hard for the average lay person to get.
alexis: but the price she's been paying is in the trust numbers in polling. she's had to address that over and over again. she addressed that again on friday. she continues to say i regrets, it's a mistake and keeps saying how she's working to earn back the american electorate's trust she said on friday it makes her feel bad. gwen: that is a real achilles heel. phil: and here we are a week after the democratic convention in philadelphia, trying to recaft -- recast her as someone with good character. but still in the polls, ericans have not -- that opinion of her. gwen: but trump's numbers continue to improve. >> the interesting thing about
those numbers, while observe a.m.a's standing is very good, there is still a majority of this country that believes the country is going in the wrong direction. the right track/wrong track numbers, so to speak. 4% in the recent n -- cnn poll believe the country is going in the right direction, so there is an inconsistency there. while she can say i'm pushing for an obama third term and a lot of voters are ok with that, it may not work in some parts of the country. doyle: in her jobs tour this week, her central economic argument was we're doing better than people give president obama credit for but we can do much better than that and i understand the country is hurting. gwen: hasn't he been making that argument? doyle: he has. and the one i think she made with more effect and more passion is no matter what you think about me, look at donald
trump. look at what donald trump is like. she did a stop at a necktie factory in denver where she ld up a type of trump's that said made in china. and did they talk about job training? yeah she said but look at trump university. the core of the hirg -- hillary clinton campaign is "i'm not donald trump." alexis: and you started by requesting -- asking about some of these republicans who are saying they're not going to vote for donald trump. some are saying they're going to vote for her because they cannot or won't vote for donald trump. so this idea of making it a referendum, you don't have to love me, she's saying, but think about it. manu: you may not trust either person but you can trust that i'm economy and qualified to do the job. gwen: but here's the thing. peel back the onion a little
bit. does it matter who runs for you campaign, what the discipline is in a campaign? how much is this campaign year mostly just people reacting to emotion and how much does it matter, as the joke goes, if they hide the phone from mr. trump? phil: -- phil: it does matter. the republican establishment is pulling their hair out. he's distracted by the khan family or paul ryan or john mccain and picking fights when he should be making this change election. if he can make the election a referendum on hillary clinton he has a fighting chance and today it's a referendum on donald trump. >> he did a couple be events in maine that is not necessarily republican territory. a split electoral state. maybe he can peel off one vote.
he should be spending more time in ohio where he has to win. he has to win in florida, virginia, pennsylvania. you're not, you know, some of the decisions that he's making about where he's spending his time is prompting second -- second-guessing as well. doyle: which is one of the reasons one of the pieces of news that threw a real chill into the republicans this week is that paul man fort is on the brink of giving up and walk iing away. gwen: but he did say the one person running that kitchen is mr. trump, which left the distinct impression that he can't. doyle: the fundamental question here is, is there a strategy and is there any sensible adult management? and there isn't a whole lot of evidence that there is. manu: you heard paul ryan today
in a radio interview say i wish donald trump had more discipline. gwen: that's a nice way of putting it. paul ryan and scott walker all had enough discipline to stay away from the trump event there tonight. finally, quickly, the debate debate begins immediately and donald trump purposely stirred the pot this week. where do we think it stands now in manu: it looks like the debate negotiations are going to get going. trump told me he wanted to have three debates. head-to-head matchups with hillary clinton. he wants to help pick the moderators. gwen: and to be clear, ron johnson, the libertarian candidate and jill steen, green party, have to reach a threrblingd -- threshold of like 15% in order to do it. doyle: the fundamentals in this situation are that this race
has reached a kind of equilibrium with hillary clinton ahead of donald trump by some snub, we're not sure what it is. what donald trump has to do is upset the equilibrium. that's why he has to do the debates. the whole notion he was never going to do the debates, that would have been the definition of clinical insanity because the debates are his last best chance at really changing the dynamic of the election. >> and that's really why he probably lost the iowa caucuses. he was leading, and then he decided to bail on the debates because of his feud with megyn kelly. that turned off a lot of voters. alexis: i was struck at the convention by how many people close and supportive of hillary clinton are running their hands gether gleefully saying this is going to be her knockout
punch. but you know what? debates usually favor the challenges. i was also struck by donald trump saying he was looking for the ratings. gwen: and as we go off the air tonight, i'm hearing donald trump has reversed himself and actually endorsed paul ryan. we're done with the show but not done talking. come join us for the rest of the conversation on the "washington week" webcast. you can find that shortly and ule -- all weekend long at pbs.org/washingtonweek. keep up with daily developments with me and judy woodruff at the pbs news hour and we'll see you here next week on "washington week." ood night.
announcer: funding for "washington week" is provided by -- >> thousands of people came out today to run the race for retirement. so we asked them, are you completely compared for -- prepared for retirement? ok. mostly prepared? could you save 1% more of your income? it doesn't sound like much but saving an additional 1% now could make a dig -- big difference over time. >> i'm going to be better about saving. you can do it. helps in the long run. >> prudential. >> xq institute.
>> additional funding is provided by boeing. newman's own foundation, donateding all profits from newman's food products to charity and nourishing the common good. the ethics in -- and excellence in journalism foundation. the ford foundation. koo and patricia yuen, through the yuen foundation, committed to bridging cultural differences in our communities. the corporation for public broadcasting and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> reliable,
hello and welcome to kqed newsroom. i'm thuy vu. coming up on our program, workplace diversity. it continues to lag in the tech industry. we'll talk with a woman at the forefront of efforts to change that. plus from edgy opera to political art. we'll bring you our bay area arts preview for august. first, an important case for students with disabilities in california. this week the u.s. department of education's office of civil rights issued a finding that calls into question the use of prone restraint on special education students. it's a practice that involves immobilizing a student facedown as a disciplinary method. the federal report found that oakland student stewart candle