we are still talking and laughing here, but we're out of time. my thanks to you guys. most of all, thanks to you for watching. "mtp daily" starts right now with chuck todd. ♪ if it's friday, it's a special edition of meet the press daily." got to love it when the fourth of july is in the middle of a week. at a moment that we're celebrating the birth of this great country, it's also a time about when we're thinking about what matters in merg. we are going to be talking about the issues that matter to you, the voter. we are going to be talking about battleground politics. we've also got a few surprises up our sleeves. so stay tuned for that as well.
i don't know about you, but i'm still catching up on sleep from last week's back-to-back democratic debates in miami. when with we saw 20 candidates introduce themselves and try to set themselves apart a bit. then we saw president trump and his campaign respond, and the fallout has only intensified. but at the heart of it all are the supposed issues that are the big things that are being debated. so what are the biggest issues for primary voters and those general election swing voters. president trump wants the debate to be about immigration again. democrats like speaker nancy pelosi want the debate to be about health care, an issue that served them well in the 2018 midterm. some ought to make the 2020 debate not about policy at all but about a person, trump. with bob miller testifying in two weeks, it is poised to dominate the summer conversation. but with so many democratic candidates running in this race against the president, there
seems to be a lane for everyone who wants one. so tonight we will try to make sense of it all starting with our colleagues, especially vaughn hillyard. they have been chriscrossing the country talking to voters and asking them what matters most to them. >> reporter: the critical issue on your mind. >> health care. >> health care. >> medicare for all. >> more talk about accountability. >> transparency and integrity in our government. >> immigration. >> immigration. >> there is no doubt the most important issue that my generation, in fact the whole world is facing right now, is the environment. >> climate change, global warming. >> whether it's climate change or economic injustices. >> you see a lot of wage inequity here. >> stop the walls. >> decriminalize marijuana. >> most important for me is restoring the integrity of the office. >> and where we're at now is people want to hear hope that we're going to get better. >> that's right. let me bring in my partners for the hour.
nbc news correspondents. welcome all. i want to pick out two issues first because they were the two issues that i thought, well, one, we heard a lot there, one is health care. and the reason i want to start with health care, heidi, is because i actually think it actually -- health care in those debates helped you understand where on the spectrum of the democratic party candidate x lied, right? like, health care, you basically want to keep obamacare, expand to public option or you take it and hope it becomes universal. you could just see the degree. so in some ways it's the best issue to use to sort of sift the candidates. >> it's where you're going to sift the candidates. but it was also notable that all of the top tier candidates view this trajectory of something that's ultimately going to end with single payer. >> even biden in some ways -- >> whether you have a bridge or not, that is where we end up.
so the question is really the transition in how we get there. and if this is going to be a debate about issues, then it's going to be hard i think still for voters to really care about those nuanced differences of how you actually get there versus the principle of just single payer. and this was a breakout moment, right? for example, michael bennet who took a stand and said this is not -- you know, we have to have, we have to preserve the private market. this is something that once we get out of the primaries, i bet you anything, mark my words, we are going to see some of these candidates. >> walk it back a little bit? >> walk it back a little bit. there has got to be a longer bridge. >> nobody even michael bennet's not quite saying this. let's finish implementing obamacare? obamacare has not been implemented. sometimes i just -- medicaid has not been expanded in all 50 states. we don't know whether obamacare
is already the bridge. >> and, look, look at what's been happening on the house, nancy pelosi and house democrats have introduced a number of bills to really, you know, improve obamacare and to strengthen it. and she's really tried to avoid the fight over medicare for all because of the way it pulls apart the party. i think, yes, health care is a great issue for democrats. it's also a great attack issue for donald trump, in part, because of the reasons you are talking about. it's really difficult to explain how do you kick 180 million people off their private insurance. >> which is what heidi's point, they're not going to do it. >> when you have donald trump who uses the simplistic argument as a battering ram and he will just call it socialism over and over again. >> there is one part from the debate that i think we are going to see in the trump ads because it allows him it take health care, which is a bad issue for him, and link it to immigration. let me play that excerpt. >> this is a show of hands question. and hold them up for a moment so
people can see. raise your hand if your government plan would provide coverage for undocumented immigrants? [ cheers and applause ] >> i believe with a show of hands you did not raise your hand. did you raise your hand? >> no, i did. >> sorry. so you said that they would be covered under your plan. >> yes. >> which is different than obamacare. can you explain that change? >> yes. you can not let, as the mayor said, you can not let people no matter what their status, where they came from, go uncovered. it's just got to be taken care of, period. >> wow. and what's funny is, by god, we had a whole debate. you lie, barack obama went to the of congress to say -- obamacare didn't do that, but, wow, has the thing shifted in the democratic primary. >> republicans are so giddy over this, yes. the president has commented on
this saying they're talking about giving health care to undocumented immigrants before they give it to americans so they are so happy about this issue. and health care was a major issue in the 2018 elections. but what's going to be different in 2020 is that in 2018, democrats were attacking republicans for wanting to take health care away, take away obamacare. in 2020 democrats are having to litigate their own health care plans. and so republicans are going to be able to be on the attack in 2020. >> and every time who is defending a plan is losing on health care if you get to go look at somebody else's. i want to bring up climate change because it's clearly, and i think this is the number two issue after health care in our polling. and it's clearly -- but i think the harder part of why candidates can't figure out how to -- you know in, health care you talk about individual aspects, prescription drug
prices, and there is bite-sized way to talk about health care. climate feels so enormous, feels so overwhelming at times that i think this is why people say we need to have a whole debate. but nobody knew how to talk about a piece of their plan. >> and that is going to be the challenge to where these candidates should look to some of those moderate candidates who broke out in 2018. i happen to accompany gretchen whitmer in michigan who was running on transitioning that economy. we are talking here about very manufacturing industrial-based economy to a green economy. she went to union halls and talked with some of the carpenters and the linemen there about -- >> she's bitesizing it. >> about retrofitting. to your point, that's right because if they don't pit-size it, then what happens is mitch mcconnell, you know, hits his fingertips and says we are going to run this on socialism. we are going to run this on alexandria ocasio-cortez's green new deal plan and paint the
whole field with that brush instead of looking at this in a bite-sized way in a way that kind of builds out for people, okay, this is how it would work. >> and that's the trick really. it's to pull it out of the realm of the abstract, maybe link climate change to something economic like you are talking about unless the sort of this nebulous how there is flooding in miami and there are wildfires in california, which is true and it's a people issue, but people has to see how it resonates in their own. >> we weren't looking for 20 points, just give me one or two. you guys, they are going to need to do a seawall. here is how my plan is going to handle seawalls. no eastbound is ready to talk about it that way yet. >> first of all because we are in uncharted territory. we haven't had to come out of with plans yet specifically. but also the two parties are in completely different places on this. democrats are perhaps talking about components of a plan.
republicans don't even believe that climate change exists for the most part. and so -- >> or they believe it exists but they think technology is just going to fix it. that's sort of their mindset. jeff bezos will do it. >> well, healthy you have a policy disagreement and a policy discussion. in climate change you don't even have the same underlying belief on the issue. >> which is in some ways and it actually allows democrats it's easier for them to run on it. >> on the primary, yes, or in the general. >> because they don't even want to do anything about the problem. that has actually been the losing end. but i will say this. you saw in florida at least republicans when they run, have to care about the environment. because rick scott and desantis have had to govern that way. >> with the flooding and the farmers are starting to say, hey, this is real and it's real because i'm living it. >> let me ask a mueller question. so before the debates we find
out that mueller or frankly we are thinking about questions and we were never going to do a lot about impeachment. you saw the few times that we brought it up. but did these debates signal that mueller is even farther back in the issue? is this in the third row of your suv, jeff? >> i think so. because if you look at the calendar, the clinton impeachment process took, what, five to six months. if you start that clock now that, takes under the circumstances us into october, november. okay, great, i don't think you can walk and chew the mueller gum and the impeachment gum at the same time. >> i am not convinced though that democrats don't want to have an impeachment fight in 2020 because it draws so much negative attention on the president. yes, it will suck the seam -- >> i kind of lean where you are on that. i think it's a net positive. >> we don't know, we will see what happens. but it'll draw attention away
from the presidential campaign, but it'll draw a lot of negative attention toward the president. >> but we are assuming that the mueller testimony is going to be earth-shattering and game-changing and i don't think that's an assumption. i was speaking with aides on the hill who just feel defeated. it's come so late and so far after the narrative has just been etched in stone. >> and this is going to be during summer vacations, july 17th, and then 12 days later we will have another presidential debate. all right, on this special edition of "mtp daily," it's all about what matters in 2020, well, the battlegrounds. which states will be the battlegrounds this time around? we are going to head to two of the red states the democrats think they can turn blue. that's next.
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2016. democrats are hoping to take back those states in 2020, but they are also looking at some possible new battlegrounds. two states that have been solidly red since at least the late '90s. but the margins weren't as wide as they had been in recent years. and demographic changes fuelled upsets and an almost upset in both places last november. democrats in texas have talked a big game about flipping the state and they've never gotten closer than beto o'rourke did against ted cruz. but it's still not clear if he was an anomaly. for this special edition the "mtp daily" i spoke to julie fein, political reporter at our nbc five dallas-fort worth affiliate. i asked her if texas is really a battleground state in 2020. and is it a battleground all the way down the ballot, or is it
really just the senate race, not the presidential. >> i believe that the democrats want to think this is a battleground state. listen, you do have to pay attention to the numbers, the demographics here are changing. and i think that democrats are hopeful because of what happened in the last senate race. so i expect democrats to really concentrate on that. they will look at numbers from a recent quinnipiac poll that actually shows joe biden beating president trump here in texas. so i think that democrats are optimistic. texas is a state that republicans really have to pay attention to. >> what's happening in texas in some ways is very similar to the national demographic picture, which is texas became competitive because of the suburbs. and i guess the question is, is that the swing vote. is the swing vote a former republican woman who used to vote republican and now they're up for grabs for both parties? >> i think the swing vote here
is two different people. i think the swing vote somewhat is the suburban vote. i think you also have to look at the swing vote being people that are moving to texas. we are growing so much here in texas. >> so new residents. >> the demographics are changing. so i think there are two different areas of swing votes. and i think also because of representative beto o'rourke, there are a lot of new voters. >> so the president, the tariff, the border, what does that do to the texas politics? does that polarize it more? is he making republicans vulnerable in ways that they normally aren't in texas? or is this something democrats ought to be careful of? >> democrats do need to be careful of this because you have to remember that president trump won this state by ten points. this is a state that is very concerned about the economy. and the economy is doing very well here in texas. so republicans will pay very close attention to that.
>> my skepticism about texas is not that the demographics aren't changing, not that there isn't opportunity, my skepticism is that the national party on the democratic side doesn't want to put the amount of money it would take to actually activate. did beto o'rourke invest enough that actually it's no longer as expensive to sort of seed texas? is there a enough residual? did he leave anything there? or is this going to be something that the democrats have to build from scratch again? >> the democrats really have to build this from scratch. i mean representative o'rourke showed that he can raise a lot of money. he spent a lot of money. he was on the ericonstantly in that race with commercials. so the democrats what they now have though is more people involved. they have more volunteers, they are training more people to be chairpeople of campaigns. so they do have a bigger and better system now. but in terms of money, they have a lot to raise here, chuck. >> let's turn now to another
potential battleground state in the sunbelt, arizona. cinema narrowly flipped -- mcsally now will have to run again in 2020 for a full term. so i began my conversation, actually to finish that term and then she will have to run two years later for the full term, by the way. i begin my conversation with nbc phoenix's political brahm resnik. is that purple or is that still to be determined. >> i would say definitely a battleground purple. it is certainly moving toward there. we just broke down the trump-cinema comparison. trump's vote in 2016 versus kyrsten sinema's vote in 2018. it's really interesting because we are seeing new areas go purple. there is a highway here called the loop 101. if you follow the loop 101 which goes through some pretty
affluent areas, you see a purple band of precincts that won kyrsten sinema and donald trump. that's something mark kelly who is running against senator martha mcsally. he's got to win those areas. mcsally has got to win them back. we are seeing a definite purple trend there as well as in all of maricopa county which you have to win to win statewide. >> one of you three is the nominee. what should they take away from the fact that kyrsten sinema was afraid to utter the word "democrat" at times throughout '18 because she thought that was going to hurt her. i mean, that's why, mike, i'm a little unsure. well, how swingy is arizona? she won by basically trashing the democrats at times. i mean, i think she would say, yeah, i'm a democrat but i don't love it. >> well, that's why they call it purple, right?
kyrsten sinema just totally avoided the democrats in '18. she is widely viewed as the model now for how to win an election. we saw something you didn't notice nationally. but in 2016 we had a democratic candidate running against sheriff joe arpaio. he beat him soundly. he was a democrat but not a democrat, big d democrat. he didn't really get out there, get front of the party, with the party. he was at their election night victory party, and that was a model as well. so building that in maricopa county, excuse me, and what kyrsten sinema did statewide, you need republicans, cinema won i think 12% of the republican vote which is huge. and you need the independents. they don't vote and the number's equal to their registration, which is about 30, 33% of the total. but they can make a difference in a close race. it's clear cinema won them and those republicans in that purple loop and elsewhere helped put her over the top. that's what the presidential
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we just heard arizona and texas reporters. in 2019 beto o'rourke lost the texas senate rate by only 2.6%. it took a week to figure out that kyrsten sinema ultimately won that election in arizona. my nbc colleagues are back. leann, jeff, and heidi. you also hit capitol hill, so you hear that kind of chatter. let's start with texas. to texas republicans act like they're starting to get nervous? >> well, first of all, we have been having the same conversation for the past at least since 2012 that maybe this is the year that texas is going to turn blue. >> first time i heard it was '88. >> well, maybe. i'll start with 2012 when i'm aware of it. but, so, on the hill, i mean, i think that the senate race is going to have an impact on what happens at the presidential john
cornyn is running again. democrats had hoped that beto o'rourke would jump in the senate race. >> would that have been the best candidate? >> i think they got mj hagar. i think that is a very strong candidate and i don't think that they are sad about it. you hit it in your question, though, chuck. is the democratic party prepared to invest there. not only the national democratic party but the local texas democratic party as well, which has not -- is not nearly as robust as the republican party there. >> we were down there during the midterms in october. the biggest complaint i got was beto's hoarding all the money. he didn't invest, he didn't plant some seeds that he could have planted and nobody else did because the dscc didn't believe it. >> they said, beto, good luck. so the national party did not invest. and it's obvious -- look, it's another a small thing, it's going to take a large
investment. but, my god, the payoff. and here's the thing -- >> the trump campaign is worried about texas, aren't they? >> i think that beto o'rourke is he took advantage of the short-term trend there. so he won big with mostly female white voters there but he didn't make a dent with the hispanic population. that's awful. >> part of the problem is it's an off-year election. but if the democratic party invests in texas the way that they did for obama in 2008 in places like virginia, north carolina, and colorado, they could really do damage there for the republicans in texas. >> look what obama's done basically with virginia and colorado, what he did. he turned two red states and they're now solid blue. they're not competitive. >> i would say arizona is the next one, though, right? because you look at what happened in 2018, and then you combine that with what happened in 2016. i was covering hillary clinton's campaign, and the reason why we weren't in michigan is because we were in phoenix. and she only lost that by about
3 percentage points. then you combine that with the 2018 you drill down on the hispanic. >> cinema won by 3, so there's your three. >> but so for 2020, depending on who the candidate is, right, it's all going to come down to whether the candidate can kind of maintain those patterns, which have already shown that they are emerging, we are reaching that point. >> the trump campaign is trying to play some offense. one of the states they claim they are trying to expand is nevada. well, if you guys have spent any time with john ralston. >> and i'm from nevada. >> i asked him about the grand plan to expand the map in nevada. >> the president's campaign manager brad parscale is trying to, quote, expand the map. and the first state he says is nevada. is this wishful thinking or is he smart to be thinking about it? >> uh, you know, it's certainly
wishful thinking in the sense that if you just look at the numbers which i don't think is very instructive, you will see that trump only lost nevada by 2, 2.5 points. but as you remember, that race was after only after early voting. they had a good election. but they were behind by 6 points or so after early voting. the power that the democrats have partly because of the culinary union and other issues. plus, chuck, they just passed same-day registration, motor voter exists atmosphere. but again we don't know who the nominee is. we don't know what the atmospherics are going to be. but i do think that the term "wishful thinking" applies here. >> all right, nevada native. he was pretty rough. on paper it just doesn't make a lot of sense that somehow a state that democrats won with hispanic voters is a state that trump's going to somehow flip
back. >> no. nevada has trended blue for -- >> yeah. it's been about since obama. >> right. and the move of nevada becoming an early primary state was huge. it helped to build the democratic party there. and the fact that in this election it is also another early primary state. so the democrats are already spending a lot of time there. they are building out the party. they are ensuring that their activists are engaged. and so i think that it's going to be a huge uphill climb for interest um to compete there. just the demographics, the energy, and the just the political position of the state right now doesn't match trump politics. >> geoff, new hampshire makes some sense. there is like that one main congressional district. new hampshire can be a little ornery about taxes. >> i talked to people close to
the president and people connected to the campaign who say they are not invested in expanding the map. what they're going to do is try to reactivate really -- they're going to try to reactivate the trump loyalists because that is what donald trump does well. you keep pushing the grievance narrative, all the culture wars and i think that wins well for him. >> i think i've got to fly the socialist banner through the industrial midwest. i don't see any practical evidence that they are trying to expand the map. they may say that because they want to talk it up and make it seem like he's expanding his base. we have seen absolutely no evidence of that. and i think depending on, again, depending on who the nominee is, they could be quite successful. if it's a bernie sanders type person or even elizabeth warren. the challenge for the democrats is to push back on that and say do you believe that social security is socialism? do you believe that medicare is socialism? are public roads socialism? >> do you think democrats need to -- so what you're saying is
democrats need to, like, hey, there's always been a strain of socialism in our democracy. >> we are not a pure capitalists. society just like europe is not a pure socialistic society. they have social safetynet. >> bumper stickers. >> they still don't have a slogan. >> and they don't -- they're afraid of making that case. they know that that's an intellectually correct argument. they're afraid of that. >> and the real fraught thing for democrats in the trump era is that you have democratic voters who demand intellect wal consistency and honesty. you have republicans who have never and will never demand that of donald trump. >> and getting back to our first segment on issues that are on the ballot. the one thing we didn't talk about is the judiciary. that is something that republicans care about so much. >> well, guess what. we are going to talk about that in the next segment. >> i didn't get the rundown.
welcome back. independence day is a time for tra ditionz, fireworks, barbecues, baseball. we've all got them. but here at "mtp daily," we have another tradition unlike any other that we do to celebrate independence day. talking to one of two independent united states senators, maine's angus king. >> joining me now is the independent senator angus king of maine. senator king, welcome back to a tradition like no other. it's our annual independence day conversation of, like, why can't more independents serve in the united states senate. we have this conversation every year. every year the parties get more
unpopular, and every year you seem to be almost alone in this middleground. why? >> well, i think it's a combination of factors, chuck. i think one is strul in many states it's hard for an independent to get on the ballot. you've got to jump through a lot of procedural hoops, signatures and all that kind of thing. secondly though i think more than anything else, you've got to pass a kind of credibility standard. in many states that have never elected an independent to major office, it's sort of unthinkable. do you see what i mean? i was elected as an independent governor in the '90s in large measure because there was an independent governor in the '70s in maine. and people thought, oh, this can work. >> and by the way you had one in connecticut. did you serve at the same time or right around the same time. so new england even had independents. >> i met with lowell reicher. and one of the questions i had to answer was can an independent
govern. the answer was yes. and i think that worked for me also as eight years as governor. but it's a thinkability issue, chuck, new jersey, pennsylvania, california, they're just not used to the idea. and people have it in their heads, oh, if i vote for an independent, i am throwing away my vote. so the biggest thing is to convince the voters that you're a realistic option and it can work. that's happened in maine now. i've been elected governor twice and senator twice. but it's hard to translate that to other states. >> but i am wondering now if it's harder and harder to convince people you are still an independent. i say this, there are a lot of people who believe in politics. everything's binary now, right? you're either with trump, you're against trump. you are either with the resistance, you are against the resistance. and right now our politics is very binary. and it seems that that makes it even more difficult for someone like you. >> it sure is because, you know,
there are some of the democratic group who's say i support donald trump. the republicans think i'm mostly with the democrats, and i think that's just a reality. our politics has become very binary. but at the same time, chuck, and you mentioned it in your first question. the parties are getting less and less popular. then if you think about it, let me give you a piece of math. this is really interesting. when i ran in 2012, let's take the republican primary to select my opponent. about 30% of the people of maine are republicans. 20% voted in the primary. so that's 6% of the people of maine voted in the primary. the winner got about 30% of the primary vote. so he got 30% of 6%. 2% of the people of maine nominated the republican candidate for the united states senate. pretty much the same numbers for the democrats. at some point people are going to wake up and say, wait a minute, i want to have more choices than this, and this really isn't the way the system's supposed to work.
>> you know, something tells me that your senate colleague susan collins must be jealous of the fact that you don't have to worry about primary politics. has she reached out to you saying i'm getting had i on the left, hit on the right, everybody's angry with me. if she went the independent route, would she actually be more free, or do you think she'd feel that pain even worse? >> well, we have talked about it in the kind of joking way. being a republican is in her dna. her grandmother was a republican member. her father was a state senator so i don't think that's going to happen. but i can tell you being an independent is in many ways a luxury. you don't have to check with any particular group to see what your decision is going to be. i could appoint people to offices to my cabinet and not worry about what party they were from. so, i have found it to be absolutely liberating and, plus, as you mentioned, you don't have to worry about a primary. >> you know, it's interesting.
i think some of us thought you might help become a galvanizing force that maybe you could recruit other senators. i go back to something, i said it to you last time i think that we have talked about this on air. i do think if you guys don't like how the united states senate is run, that 6 or 8 of you could basically leave your party caucuses. you could encourage them to leave the caucuses and you dlefl your own, and you would totally change how the business of the senate was conducted. when are you guys going to link arms and jump off the cliff? >> you know, you used a term that i am not familiar with, the business of the senate being conducted. not much is being conducted now. >> well, that's my point. i really think if you guys could deny anybody a majority, you'd force them to rethink how that senate floor works. >> but here's where you get to raw power, chuck. you understand how politics work. the caucuses and the leaders of the two caucuses decide whether
you're going to have seniority, they decide what your path to leadership is. and so, you know, that's the problem. if i could persuade six or eight of my colleagues and say we can take this place over, but then they would be endangering their role and ability to get anything done. so it's a tough job. what i've tried to do is work with people on individual issues, student loans, immigration, and be a kind of bridge-builder. occasionally i've been able to do that. but it's hard to do it in a place where everything is so highly partisan. it's a pretty frustrating place to do business. >> before i let you go, if the senate does change hands, i have a feeling the filibuster for everything is gone. good or bad or just different? >> bad and it will certainly be over my opposition. and when i came here i was a young turk saying we've got to do something about the filibuster and getting rid of it. i now -- i've been both on the
majority side and on the minority side. i think the filibuster on legislation is really important. otherwise what you get is the swings of the pendulum, and, you know, the republicans take full control, there is no filibuster and they decide to privatize social security or do away with medicaid or whatever the democrats take. i think the filibuster in my view, and i've come to this by experience, forces some level of bipartisanship, forces some level of consideration in minority interest. so i think it would be a huge mistake whoever's in charge next time. it'd be a huge mistake for the country. >> see, it's always an interesting conversation with mr. king. up ahead, what's getting democrats all riled up this election cycle? that's next. most people think a button is just a button. ♪ that a speaker is just a speaker. ♪
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which took them to the place where they discovered that sometimes a little down time can lift you right up. ♪ flights, hotels, cars, activities, vacation rentals. expedia. everything you need to go. welcome back. in the last two decades, culture debates have united republicans. arguably more than even policy or the economy. but in this upcoming election, it may be democrats who can use a hot-button cultural issue to unite their base. recently i spoke with kay anderson. she had a very interesting answer to my question of what iowa democrats are thinking about this election cycle. >> one of the things i have noticed that's different from past cycles among democrats is that they're very animated about the supreme court. obviously, we've covered republicans for decades, and they have been very concerned
about turning the court into a conservative direction. but when you go to events where candidates are answering questions from the crowd, they will be asked about the supreme court. court, of course, you've seen candidates come out with different ideas how to address expanding the number of justices on the supreme court. maybe proposing you know, a retirement age for court justices, no longer having a lifetime appointment. i find that fascinating. it sort of explains some of the things that i've been hearing from women voters in late may when the law was signed in alabama, i was at a bullock event. there were two women sitting in the back of the room talking to one another in a very animated way. i walked up and said what are you guys talking about? they were talking about alabama and one said to me, and i quote here, no more r more old white
men. that is roiling through the electorate here. >> all right. leanne, jeff and heidi are back. leanne, you wanted to bring up the culture wars what alabama and missouri have done on the abortion issue. the right and in many ways donald trump president of the united states because antonin scalia died and a whole bunch of trump skeptics decided they wanted a conservative on the court. democrats usually care about the court after something happens, never before. >> they're reactionary. >> because of alabama, there seems to be as you see from kay henderson, something. you seem to be picking this up. >> there's two issues that republicans have been organizing on for what, 40 years now? the court, stacking, filling the courts and abortion. and this is finally hitting democrats in the head because these are issues where they are have coming in to problems on their core beliefs that have not
been challenged for so long. so you have mitch mcconnell in the senate filling the courts. you have all these abortion cases in the states going through the court system and democrats are finally engaged on the issue, and i think that we'll see if they're able to take 40 years of what republicans have been organizing on and make it come to fruition in 2020. it's a huge tack. >> heidi, what seems different this time among democrats is, when they would talk about the abortion issue before, it would be to protect the freedom that was already in place. now, you hear democrats i think trying to realize they need to change the conversation, which is this is every part of this should be a private decision. government should have no role in this at all, which you might say oh, wait, compromise. but in some ways this is what we're seeing in the polling that it's -- it's polarizing itself a bit.
>> this is one of the first time we've seen women's reproductive health be a top issue. to your point about polling, a prominent democratic pollster found a lot of these suburban women never thought even when donald trump came in that roe would be at risk. so this has been a huge wave that's washing over not just democratic women but independent women, as well. so i think you will definitely see an opportunity there for the democrats. but especially as these state laws come along because they are so far in the opposite direction like with alabama. it's not just about you know, abortion but it's about the life of the mother because in the same state. >> they're not even talking about restriction. any protections for the mother. >> mother. you're seeing maternal ma mortality rates increase as well as the mortality rates of the babies. >> it was interesting, the right
over the last 40 years weren't going for the full ban on abortion. they were always doing these little chip aways. they would do. >> death by a thousand cuts. >> late term abortion ban and this or that. this is why democrats got wedged out of the issue because there would always be a chunk of, maybe it would be catholic democrats from the midwest that would say i'm for that restriction. and now republicans have run out of the chip aways. now the only thing left is the full and total ban. this seems to be creating backlash. >> i've also noticed a shift in thes a symmetry on this issue and guns. gun control would animate republican voters in a way that it wouldn't democrats. now it has changed dramatically. >> in part because of the spate of school massacres and this perceived weak nick of the grip of the nra and other gun lobbies. you have democrats talking about gun control in a way you've never seen them do before.
especially the candidates. when bill clinton would talk about gun control, he also liked to hunt ducks he would mention. john kerry, he would have all the camouflage on and talk about geese hunting and work in there a mention of gun control. democrats these days don't even feel the needed to make those comments. >> what i find interesting on the culture issues is the party that can point the finger and say they want to get rid of all your rights. and now, democrats are the ones to be able to say they're trying to take away a right. you may not agree how big the right should be, but they want to take the whole thing away. it's the same with guns. they don't say they want to take the gun away. >> it's gone to a place that ehaven't seen in a very long time, this issue. there's a case in alabama where a woman is being tried for her baby, the death of her baby at
five months, she was shot in the stomach and now being charged with manslaughter because it is her fault she did not protect her baby. yeah, so it's a huge case. so the fact that now women are also being held responsible for what they do with their bodies or what happens to them is going to be a big turning point i think. >> that can can launch the other idea which is you just said, okay, if you say a fetus has full constitutional rights, then give them full benefits and all other things. leanne, jeff, heidi, thank you. we'll be right back. leanne, jeff, heidi, thank you we'll be right back. - when you're volunteering, you never hear
that's all we have for tonight. we'll be back monday. happy independence day weekend from all of us. >> good evening. welcome to a special edition of "the beat" on this july 4th holiday weekend. tonight, the 2020 race heating up. candidates making all kinds of cases to voters around the nation. we have interviews with top contenders about the issues. on tonight's show, a special report on donald trump's obstruction, the evidence democrats say will be key as bob mueller prepares to speak publicly about it for the very first time in this upcoming hearing. that's a special report in tonight's broadcast. later is, we speak to a 9/11 first responder to teamed up wi s