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tv   Inside Politics  CNN  January 25, 2015 5:30am-6:01am PST

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mitt romney and jeb bush aren't talking much about their face to face. >> we talked about -- talked about the patriots. we talked a little bit about politics, not as much as you might imagine. >> plus, the president promises his final two years will be a fight for the middle class. >> at some point you've got to say yes to something. i want to get to yes. >> and hillary clinton emerges from a month off. says the president's plan is a good start. >> there's so much more to do. >> what do his rising poll numbers mean for her white house hopes. "inside politics," the biggest stories sourced by the best reporters now. welcome to "inside politics" i'm john king. jonathan martin of "the new york times", the atlantic's molly ball and ed o'keefe of the washington post and julie hirsch felled davis of the washington times.
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they bragged about their conservative credentials and looked to make new friends in the state. chris christie asked those who view him as too moderate to look again. >> the notion that our party must abandon our belief in the sanctity of life to be competitive in blue states is simply not true, and i am living proof of that fact. >> the new jersey governor also warning republicans they need to challenge president obama's proposals to help the middle class. >> we don't demonize the wealthy as so many folks in the democratic party do, but nor should we kater to the wealthy at the expense of our middle income workers and the working poor who are the backbone of every american community. >> now yesterday's event proved likely to be a very crowded republican field. tea party favorite senator ted cruz urged iowan conservatives
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to kick the tires. >> the most important role that you will play is to look each candidate in the eye and say, don't talk, show me. if you say you support liberty, show me where you stood up and fought for it. >> the wisconsin governor scott walker made a good impression. mike huckabee, sarah palin, ris santorum. if you need an early morning laugh, the donald showed up, to show he was serious about running like he said the last time and the time before. >> jonathan martin, let's put the donald aside. is it too otherly to say winners and losers or did somebody stand out and help themselves? >> from my conversations with the folks in iowa, walker did help himself. i think he's a pretty good fit for the state. he's from next door. he has a midwestern sensibility about him obviously and i think he's the kind of keynote that can bridge the conservatives and more center right wing of the party in a place like iowa where even the center right is pretty conservative. senator walker helped himself. cruz was solid. that's his ground. i think those two.
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it's really going to be a fascinating dynamic to see in iowa where you've got two candidates potentially in the race who have already won the caucuses the last two times. if they turn to huckabee or santorum or if they want a new fresh face as scott walker is new. >> the democrats, molly, were making a big deal. every candidate has the word steve king behind them in giant type. he's a conservative man re-elected several times. here's a guy that says illegal immigrants have at that lopes by are smuggling drugs. they're a dreamer. they say he should be deported. will that hurt republicans? >> deportable. >> will it hurt republicans to show up at an event like this or is it, so what? >> the potential is there and a lot of republicans do take it ear jously, right? this isn't democratic spin. there are a lot of republicans that think that mitt romney's early comments on immigration
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were what caused him to lose the general election. we're not hearing that kind of rhetoric directly out of the mouths of the potential candidates, but you do have steve king pushing them to commit to some positions that really are a political problem for them and the immigration issue overall is a political problem for them. i don't think this is trivial. steve king is not known nationally. his clout is questionable. in 2008 he endorsed fred thompson who came in third. >> good point. >> so to some republicans, some sort of pro immigration reform republicans it's a little puzzling that so many are kissing his ring. he's very popular in western iowa and has a following among western conservatives. >> we heard a lot about increasing border security. tough tone on immigration. one of the candidates who was not there, ed, was jeb bush. at an event friday in california he said this about immigration. it tells you why he decided not to go to this event. >> we need to find a way, a path
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to legalized status for those that have come here and have languished in the shadows. there's no way that they're going to be deported. >> that's president obama's position. that's george w. bush's position. it used to be john mccain's position. can jeb bush sell that in today's republican paertd? >> been saying this for a while. i think we said it here before, that jeb bush is much more concerned and is looking to the general election, looking to the appeal to independents and maybe some democrats. he's less worried and concerned it seems about this early stuff. the question is, does that strategy work? there's a mixed bag on engaging or not engaging with iowa from the past few cycles. i look at it as kind of like members of the press. you know, somebody starts covering one story. we're not going to worry about that just yet. i guess we have to. that's the risk that he has is he avoids iowa too long, he'll show up and they'll say, where were you at that freedom summit that steve king hosted back in january 2013? >> when you look at such a crowded field does he get enough
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of iowa to move on? >> he's working very hard to show he's not going to kiss off iowa, but that remains to be seen. iowa voters like to see people come there, like to have them make the personal appeal for their votes. if he doesn't get there, that's a problem for him. the interesting thing about that clip that you played is it sounds a lot like what mitt romney said in the run up to his 2008 presidential run. then he's changed positions and was talking in the run up to 2012 about the need for illegal immigrants to self-deport, get out of the country which as molly mentioned was a real problem for him. so we're seeing this debate kind of evolve in real time. the pendulum is really swinging back from what we were seeing before. he and if mitt romney decides to make a run, mitt romney will have to figure out where they come down on that spectrum and how they square that with people of iowa. >> it is fascinating that bush isn't the only one that's avoiding this. the four-term governor of iowa, i'm losing track, he sort of poured a little cold water on
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this event yesterday saying it's not the only test of, it's not the only way to engage iowa republicans. then you have republicans outside of the state, they're saying we put way too much attention into iowa. republicans have to be very careful in engaging this very small group of people when they have a whole country to worry about. >> a lot of speakers were going off on jeb bush. he became a punching bag at this event. he was being attacked by name or implicit implicitly. that might be the danger zone. the conservative grassroots loves to have a conservative figure to set themselves against. if he becomes that guy, that's more of a problem for him than any particular position. you know who i thought was really interesting that wasn't there that people aren't talking about is rand paul. he's been, working iowa longer and harder than any other candidates. he's been trying to woo the social conservatives. for him not to show up was interesting. >> go ahead. >> i was going to say, jeb and to a lesser degree myth has
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emerged as the foil for all of this. they're trying to advance in their own lane they're doing so going after the guys in the other lane. jeb bush, the sheer volume of the folks that were there and weren't there, there's a lot of people dye vietding the conservative vote. if you're jeb bush and you appeal to the center right crowd, the we want to win crowd, business crowd, you don't have to get 51%, you have to get 27% if that field is divided. that's the best news. it took eight hours to complete. >> you have ideological divisions, immigration will be one, education standard might be another as you go through that. emphasis issues. who wants to talk about abortion, same-sex marriage, who doesn't. you have generational issues. romney and bush, older republicans. huckabee you put in that group. younger faces, republican scott walker came out with his sleeves made up. nothing against you other guys, we need a fresh face and somebody that doesn't work in this town.
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>> i think that sends a powerful message to republicans in washington and around the country, if you're not afraid to go big and go bold, you can actually get results, and if you get the job done, the voters will actually stand up with you. >> one of the guys you've got to keep an eye on, right? he's a governor. he's a midwestern ner. iowa is a neighboring state. in history, that's a pretty powerful message. i'm getting things done, i'm not from washington and i'm not them. >> walker has had the ingredients on paper. the question is whether he can turn that into a compelling personality case. he's given some speeches that led people to believe he sort of didn't have the mojo. i think by coming out strong yesterday and showing that he can actually make a case for himself in a compelling way, that went a long way for him because on paper, yeah, he does have all those ingredients. >> can he raise the money? he has less from his fights against labor, his three elections out there. can he raise the money? he's a guy to watch regarding
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the straw pole this summer. does he bite that forbidden, fruit, john, and get attempted to come into the straw pole and blow a lot of money for the mojo? that will be fascinating to watch. >> he has a consistent message in the primary and general. i'm new. i'm from outside of washington. i've done things far away from here. that will work in either setting. >> it's a good time given the field and the way the public feels about what's going on in the public to be an antiwashington figure. this is a good message for anyone to break into this field. if you need a little boost, i'm not from washington, i'm not those guys. >> you'll hear that that you'll think he's selling deodorant, i'm new and fresh. >> is the party willing to change its views on immigration or embrace a candidate that's out of step? is the republican party willing to move away from picking a new face? up next, president obama's poll numbers are heading up. how that just might help hillary
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clinton. first, hillary clinton takes politicians say the darnest things. >> you can imagine a conversation with putin. he was prime minister after he was president. one day he says, vladimir, you think if i do president again? i think i do. why don't we just go announce it. we'll tell demet try he can be prime minister. excellent. excellent idea. we have a process. yeah. [ man ] i remember when i wouldn't give a little cut a second thought.
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now one reason so many republicans want to run for president in 2016 is history. it's very rare for the party ending a two-term presidency to keep the white house.
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hillary clinton has to hope that president obama, well, has a little ronald regan in him. he wants him to have mojo in him to help her. she probably liked this moment at the state of the union. >> i have no more campaigns to run. my only agenda -- [ applause ] i know because i won both of them. >> now we didn't hear that from president reagan in his seventh year state of the union address. he didn't say anything like that, but the president standing at the end of his term could impact the next election. look at ronald regan's numbers. in 1988 heading into 1989. this is late in the election year. ronald regan starts to go up. he was very popular at the end. a lot of democrats were saying don't give george h.w. bush a third reagan term. reagan's numbers were going up, george h.w. bush won the white house. hasn't happened in a long time. the question is where will president obama be at the end of the his numbers are going up now. only early 2015.
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watch his numbers as we head into 2016. it is possible if president obama stays up above 50 that it helps hillary clinton. no disrespect intended with the s seesaw. >> hillary clinton has to be thinking i want this president, i need this president to be moving this way. >> absolutely. she had to be very happy with the message that he laid out in the state of the union, very aggressive, kind of setting the distinctions between the two paertsds. here's what i would do for the middle class. let's hear represent scans tep -- republicans step up. we heard that where he's saying, listen, these are the battle lines, let's fight. with the clip you played there he was very kind of belligerent, sort of very in your face with republicans. you don't like it, well, we won the last two elections and let's see what you can do. i think hillary as you pointed out, it's still january. pretty early.
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she has to be happy with the trajectory. let's see where he is in a year and a half. that will say more what she needs to do going into 2016. has nothing to do with iowa, fundraising, who's hiring which campaign manager. it has to do with the fact that barack obama's numbers are creeping back up. if he gets to 50% or higher on 2016 election day. economy is coming back, gas prices are at $1.75, that is the election right there because to your point just now, so many of these elections are about the incumbent. it doesn't matter if the incumbent is on the ballot or not. if president obama is coming back and the economy is roaring back, it's going to be tough for the represedemocrats to lose th i remember democrats being out in iowa saying george h.w. bush would be a third term reagan. they said it scornfully.
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you were about to make a point. >> i was going to say when he made that line, two things. i was in the room. the first person to clap was the first lady. she's done with campaigning. >> sure about that. >> you're done, great. but the democrats loved that line. it's that confidence. what others would see as dockinedock cockiness. what they've been starving to see. what they've been saying, we may have lost the election, but what about our election, income and equality. the president references the 1% in the state of the union address. that was unthinkable a few years ago. mitt romney and other republicans are running around talking about income equality. they're winning the argument and the president helped them do that. >> if the numbers stay up, it helps hillary clinton and others to negotiate. we had not seen hillary clinton in more than a month. she came out the day after the state of the union. she was in canada. i'm not sure how many electoral
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votes winnipeg, canada, gets in our election. that's where she was scheduled to be. she was embracing the president's middle clasz message. i'll add the but after. >> there's so much more to do to bring security and possibility to families struggling with stagnant wages and sinking hopes, to restore comedy and cooperation to our politics, to reform our broken immigration system, to restitch the fraying fabric of american life. a lot to talk about. is she working on the case of i'm not the past but i have experience that can lead us into the future? >> we still need to hear from hillary clinton, a coherent end to that. she has been in the tough position where she's not officially a candidate it's hard for her to make that pitch. i was surprised by how nonkmital
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she w -- noncommittal she was in that. the middle class is a big thing. one of our writers, david frumm had a perceptive speech saying he thinks president obama is trying to box hillary in. by taking a very aggressively liberal platform in his last couple of years forward, he's trying to push her to the left and make sure she can't do the clinton thing, try angulate, run to the center and get all of her corporate cronies on board in her election. if she doesn't have any competition in the democratic field, who else is going to do that? who can make her say the things like an elizabeth warren or democratic base would want. >> interesting you make that point because in a tweet on state of the union night and then in that speech she said nice things as you know about what the president said, but she also said, now it's time to deliver. that was her message in 2008, that this young senator, barack
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obama talks a good game, but can he deliver. was she poking him? >> it was striking -- it's unclear whether she was poking him directly but i think she is leaving herself a clear avenue to if she runs and is being portrayed as a third obama term and that's seen as a bad thing, to get some distance from him. she's going to need some distance from him. she was his secretary of state after all. she's going to need to make a distinction between what she would do and the kind of president she would be. i know barack obama and in those very carefully worded ways she's preserve those options for herself. >> i've flown around the world as a corporate executive and done things. she was flying around the world and didn't get anything done. that part of her career she's going to have to explain at some point, but on everything else you're right. probably trying to put some distance. >> the party out there in iowa, they were more focused on each
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other than hill try. >> which tells you the party right now is really engaged in an intense conversation about its future, what it stands like. they're still debating who they are. >> their identity. >> get the next one over. they'll get to her. i don't think she'll have -- >> they haven't forgotten hillary. >> have that conversation, too. it's not clear the venue. >> democrats will have the post obama democratic party even if we have ahead of it before we have a competition. tomorrow's news today is next as we ask our great reporters to get you out ahead of the big political stories including what marco rubio and joe biden are thinking about 2016. for a $100. lines with unlimited talk, text, and up to 10gb of 4g lte data. switch to t-mobile. get 4 lines for a $100 today.
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let's head around the "inside politics" table and ask them to share a nugget or two from their notebooks. >> the person who was not in iowa but a lot of us aren't talking about him is marco rubio. he was down in florida talking to some of his donors. lots of speculation he's not going to run for president because jeb bush apparently is going to run for president, but what i hear is that he still very much wants to do it. one of the things that is really keeping him intrigued by this
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race is the possibility that mitt romney will run. if you have a jeb bush and mitt romney scenario, that could open up a door for rubio because it divides the center right and also it makes rubio look more conservative, less establishment. >> maybe he can say he's the younger guy in that group. >> molly ball. >> we had vice president joe biden come out and say there is a chance that he will run as president. the advantage he has, he has friends all over the country. a lot of goodwill among the democratic activists that he's known for literally decades. literally, folks. so i talked to some well-placed democrats in iowa who would be hearing from him if he were serious about this because that's what they do. they say they haven't heard from him. they haven't got the call saying, hey, do me a favor, keep your powder dry. this is the time he needs to do that and they're not hearing from joe biden. >> speaks volumes. ed? >> off the trail, up to capitol
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hill. it's make or break time for mitch mcconnell. the keystone xl pipeline nearing its conclusion. debate in the senate. bad feelings late thursday night as mitch mcconnell shut down debate. this violates the principle and pledge that there would be open amendment, open debate process. expect to see republicans allow for a few more at least this week partly because the moderate democrats that republicans need to pass this bill expressed some displeasure about it over the weekend. there's some concern that they get upset either they part ways or they won't be there in the future. >> big first test for the new majority leader. we'll watch that. julie. >> we've heard a lot about what president obama wants to do domestically. he hasn't talked a lot about another priority of his which is to get an authorization for use of military force against the islamic state. he talked a little bit about it in the state of the union. people think he goofed. we need that authority. that's a change in position for him. he's said in the past he doesn't need the authority.
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now he really wants congress to give him some legislation that would authorize that fight. internally in the white house the discussions are really heating up about what that should look like. they're anticipating quite a fight on capitol hill with both republicans and democrats. it may come up this week when the republican talks with house democrats when they retreat in philadelphia. that could be coming to a head at the same time they're talking about iran sanctions. he he has a bumpy road ahead of him. >> so odd seeing this president asking for authorization for military force. i'll close with this. you'll be hard-pressed to find a credible strategies who views sarah palin as a credible candidate. few think she was serious. she did say yesterday she's giving it a serious look. to borrow a phrase, if she did run, don't under estimate her impact in iowa. their role is not to pick the nominee but it does winnow the field. she would be competing with ted cruz, rick santorum, mike
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huckabee, maybe others. odds are like the donald. >> she just likes the attention and won't run. while top republican operatives were laughing at trump's latest flirtation of running, the possibility of a palin entry had them both laughing and debating her potential impact. we'll keep an eye on that. that's it for "inside politics." thanks for sharing your sunday morning. we'll see you soon. "state of the union" starts right now. isis strikes again amid a new round of upheaval in the middle east, and president obama takes the world station. i'm michael smerconish, and this is "state of the union." >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. good morning from washington. we're following breaking news overseas. isis issuing a new ultimatum after beheading one of two japanese nationals it held captive. joining me is white house chief of staff dennis m

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