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“Whistle while you spy.”


Trump promises a foreign leader something so alarming that an intelligence staffer becomes a whistleblower, Corey Lewandowski launches his Senate campaign during an impeachment hearing, and the President wages war on California. Then Obama campaign manager David Plouffe joins Jon and Dan to talk about the 2020 election and his new podcast, Campaign HQ.

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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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you nailed it in la welcome to planet, save America, I'm Jon Favreau, I'm Dan Pfeiffer, right here in studio here, in LOS Angeles, unbelievable, so great in just a bit. We're gonna talk to our old pal, David Plus, Barack Obama's legendary campaign manager about all things, two thousand and twenty. He will also be here in studio. What a great day a attitudes from Delaware in this studio. First, one dude from Delaware still will not come to the studio now. The Senate, Joe Biden, concourse iconography, took it yet his goons not welcome
first we've got news to talk about lots of news to talk about from an explosive story about a whistleblower blower and the President to Congress', first impeachment hearing to Trump's war on California before that, a few housekeeping notes, if you want to understand what the hell happened with that attack on Saudi Arabia over the weekend in the ensuing risk of war with IRAN, don't miss pod save the world this week, Tommy and Ben also discussed israeli elections and whether the Netanyahu's career might be over fingers crossed. They also discuss Adam Schiff's explosive letter to the director of national intelligence. About this blower and they're joined by Senator Chris Murphy who's, leading the fight to end our involvement in the disastrous civil war in Yemen and to prevent war with IRAN next week will, in the last leg of our two thousand and nineteen tour, and there are still a few tickets left for our San Jose show on September 26th and our Portland show on September 27th so head to cook a dot com. Slash events for tickets are free
the barkan, released his interviews this week with PETE Footage and who Lian Castro as part of his uncovered video series about health care in America had to cook a dot com, slash be a hero to watch his interviews, don't forget to order his brand new memoir eyes to the wind, as some of you know, because you follow him on twitter it was in the hospital for a fairly major procedure this week earlier this week he is out of the hospital he is recovering. So that is good news. He's fully recovered and goes online again. It would be great if his book was just selling like crazy. So please go pick up a copy of ids book. It is fantastic. I promise you, you will not be disappointed Only as you all know, Krooked Media is partnering, with Stacey Abrams on fair fight, two thousand and twenty her plan to fight voter suppression by hiring full time, voter protection teams in twenty battleground states next year, We launched on Friday night with the goal of raising one million dollars, and she, Nicola political director is here with an update on how
much we've raised, where we had Minnequa four hundred and seventy five thousand dollars, four hundred and seventy five thousand dollars. So what you can see if you're listening is Shaniqua has a giant bottle on the table, filled with jelly beans, and she is filling it up with more jelly beans to indicate how much money we've raised this is riveting. This is what you call us done: a visual style, visual and audio media. A video of this out, the you'll all enjoy it. You need a filling up, a bottle with jelly beans, which is I'm I'm sure, is why she went to call this. The viral content, the internet thirst for person smiling very broadly- is Elijah who's going to make him up with over again came up with this idea. We think it's great actually love the bottle. This is great anyway. The important point here is: we've already raised for
seventy five thousand dollars or on halfway there, but that's still only halfway there. We need to get to a million by November. Fifth, I believe- and look this is Maybe the most important thing we can do between now and two thousand and twenty aside from pick a nominee is to make sure there are teams on the ground in these battleground states to fight voter suppression. We know this works. We have seen it work before, but this is still right now. The biggest hole in the Democratic party strategy in two thousand and twenty and Stacey Abrams is doing everything she can to uh make sure that we can fight voter suppression so go to vote, save America, DOT, com, slash, fair fight, donate, share. Tell your friends! We need all the help we can get thanks, Shaniqua! Thank you great job, great job, Elijah Great job soybeans. Okay, let's get to the news Dan. We have to start today with the Washington Post story that broke late last night. I'm just going to read the lead on this one, the what
Blower complaint that is triggered a ten showdown between the US intelligence community in Congress involves President Trump's communications with a foreign leader which included a promise. That was regarded as so troubling that it prompted in the fish. Well, in the: U S: intelligence community, to file a formal, whistle blower complaint with the inspector general for the intelligence community. The sourcing here is two former: U S, officials familiar with the matter. The story has been confirmed by NBC and the New York Times. Nbc also confirmed the fact that the communication in question was a phone call, then I'm no expert on the inner workings of the intelligence community, but this sounds good to fooled me. Twitter. I am yeah. This sounds like a big deal. How unusual is this? What the fuck is going on here? We don't know what the fuck is going on, but it's you know. I think.
One of the reporters, I think KEN Delaney and of NBC, I think, said we're going to need to find a new word other than unprecedented to describe this, because we should be very clear. Is that a intelligence officials who buy some reports worked for some period of time. The National Security Council right. That's true, filed, a whistleblower complaint to the Trump Appoint inspector general, the the intelligence community? We should. We should tell people. I was thinking this morning like what an inspector general does, what what inspector inspector general's. Why are they in these departments? What's going on there? The independent watchdogs they're supposed to look investor? malfeasance corruption and other problems. We are, we know about inspector general's because there's been a lot of inspector general's working. The justice department investigating the various things that went on around the call me firing injure Mccabe's, we hear about them. It's a little, always a little bit of a fishy situation because there were appointed by the president and then investigate that presidents. Department. And Trump has not been known to appoint people with a shooter
straight shooters, respected on either side, and so the fact that this Trump Appoint inspector general read this complaint, Deemed it to be in these are legal terms, urgent, incredible which means by law. They are required to send it to congressional committees of oversight, so that Congress could be aware of it and look into it. That has not happened and um by determining that, it's credible and urgent. That is also that's a legal determination. That means you have to have. The whistleblower has to have witnessed something that either breaks the law involved, serious abuse of power or in dangers, national security in some way. So it's not just like I heard Trump say something on the phone with a foreign leader, and it made me uncomfortable because I disagree with his policy position. Couldn't be that and this person would know
The inspector general would also know that Donald Trump and any president has very wide latitude to declassify classified information whenever the president would like, To make decisions negotiate with foreign leaders in private on his own, like prison, has a lot of latitude when it comes to talking to foreign leaders, negotiating national security, declassified intelligence. So the fact that the Spector General and the whistle blower would know all this and still feet find this complaint. Urgent incredible tells you it might be something pretty backed into it. In fact, it likely is on its face. It is something very significant. It has to be to reach this level. It's important also to say that the Trump administration is essentially in violation of the law by refusing to send this to Congress. So it is something that
the whistleblower thought was so alarming. The inspector general found met this incredibly high bar of urgent, urgent, incredible. And the Trump administration the acting director of national intelligence, is so worried about the impact it will have on Trump that they are keeping this whistleblower complaint from Congress, in violation of the law, which is making Congress Adam Schiff in the House, intelligence committee and other leaders in Congress very, very angry as they should be. The other thing to note here is that, before the acting director of national intelligence, Joseph Maguire chose to keep the substance of the complete from Congress. He consulted wait for it, the Department of Justice, and, as we know, attorney General Bill Barr has basically been his role, has
in covering up for Trump um and not acting as an independent in general, like the attorney general should, since he's been appointed, so that sort of raises a bunch of red flags that Doj got involved and and told them to withhold it from Congress. I mean this whole thing is very concerning we don't know enough yet the acting director of national intelligence, what was actually is the whistleblower who was in Congress today. No, it was the ig is this accurate right inspector general's unicycle act and said my black as it was in front in closed session? They told us today refused to at least as of the recording of this podcast, convey the substance of the complaint to cargo, Zero violation of the law like that is the most important point yeah. This is not a you. Don't that the director of national intelligence doesn't get to decide that a whistle blower complaint that is deemed urgent incredible can be withheld from Congress. That's not in all its act, in fact, at the via
tion of the law right now. So that's that's where we are yet again, someone is breaking the law to cover up the breaking of the law of someone higher up on the food chain. Of course, Donald Trump has tweeted about this. This morning, quote another fake news story out there. It never ends virtually anytime. I speak on the phone to a foreign leader. I understand that there may be many people listening from various US agencies, not to mention those from the other country itself. No problem. Knowing all of this is anybody dumb enough to believe that I would say something inappropriate with a foreign leader while on such a potentially heavily popular did call? Yes, I am that dumb. I am dumb enough to believe that it's a pretty telling tweet, since it never argues. I don't the crime. No, he just argues I'm better committing the crimes, and you think I am he's offended that we think he's back committing crimes, not that he commits crimes, it's yeah, so without engaging in completely. Why
speculation. That's our brains for which you can check up Brian's twitter feed. Look, he may be correct, in which case I'll say see. I always knew Brian was what do we know so far? We know it involved a phone call with a foreign leader, we're aware of a handful of phone calls that happened in the general period around when this complaint was filed. So held in early August and Une July. 31St, the president had a phone call with one Vladimir Putin, yes, and what there is also you can talk to the dutch foreign leaders. I'm sure it was promising all kinds of things. It's almost certainly going be. The dutch foreign leader retreated traded Eric for like a pound. Wooden shoes. But a bus that would be around the call. There was a lot of suspicion. Our friend former Obama administration, Ambassador Russia, Michael Mcfall, was struck by this call
because the Trump Administration described it as Cooper. Based on fighting the wildfires in Russia They talked about Donald Trump, offering his assistance to help with siberian wildfires. This was wild, California was, by the way- and it was just like? No, I want to concentrate on areas wildfires with my friend Vladimir Putin and the Russians described it as measures that can improve bilateral relations. Often means sanctions, which was my interpretation, that's the same interpretation, our friends Tommy and then had I do I did believe in the time it was possible that Trump called Putin just cause. He saw there was wildfires. It's sort of this is like a dated reference for when people used actual phones, but it's sort of like being in middle school and calling the person you have a crush on to find biology. Homework hey I just I just wanted to talk about the the fires fires. That's right. While I have no idea about the fires yeah, we did
definitely reminds me of this meeting was about adoptions a little bit, but who knows we don't know we don't know, we will hopefully find soon. I think one reason why the sanctions thing is relevant is like you talked about how persons have this broad authority from derive from article two of the constitution to conduct foreign policy and what they deem you. The best interest United States Congress does have the power to limit that, two very specifically limit and Shin sanctions were in way it early on the Trump administration. Were Congress passed a law because they did not trust trump to act in America's best interest on Russia's a limit is power. The best example of how a president can overstep their bounds historically Is IRAN Contra, where in the eighties, the duration believe they wanted to help the Contras overthrow the government. Nicaragua Congress did not want them to do that. They passed the aka the Boland Amendment to say that no funds could be spent on contras. Mr,
Asian decided they didn't like that. They sold weapons to IRAN and then gave that money of the Contras which led to a huge massive scandal and could have led and could put a lot people by having been part, and so this is like there are Well, we don't know what this is, but there are parallels between the Boland Amendment, Nicaragua and the admit: the sanctions, law and Russia in the situation, not to say that Trump has a point because of course he really does. But you do wonder like on these calls with foreign leaders. There are a bunch of people listening and so I kind of wonder. What would so alarm a US intelligence official who worked for a time in the National Security Council but not potentially alarm everyone else who heard the phone call on both sides there by potentially the answer is they're all just a bunch of lackeys who didn't think it was a big problem. Yeah, I mean it's a bit, then Putin and his goons also kept it. Secret is sort of curious
and his goons if it was written- and we do not know that's right- we don't know if it was. They hinted it thing in there read out without the concerns of the U S would have for the politics or the law of sanctions relief, but you're right. There are now early online circumscribe the circle, people who listen to it. Calls directly because of the transcripts were getting around in leaking, because he was saying insane shit So it's a smaller group them for would be for an Obama call, for instance, but there would other people on that call. Now worth noting. In the Brian potential conspiracy theory area here Bolton resigned, there are two former officials who are quoted as the sources, There is very interesting. Also resigning were Dan Coats, the director of National Intelligence and Sue Gordon, who was the deputy director
who was going to take over his acting, but Trump did not trust her and so needed to push her out in order to elevate this Mcguire fellow who seems to be doing exactly what Trump wants, which is rampant lawbreaking for the purposes of protecting Trump and another person who resigned in August was Jon Huntsman ambassador to Russia. Oh, that is an interesting point. So it's just a lot of again. We can get the red string, we could go all day. Other the time you listen to this. You probably know all the answers, but look. At least we know that this Congress and these Democrats are going to do whatever it takes to hold this administration accountable right. Then someone is drafting a letter right now, segue to topic. So the House Democrats haven't been super successful in using their power to hold the administration accountable for its wrongdoing on Tuesday former Trump. A manager, Corey Lewandowski, confirmed during the House Democrats first official impeachment hearing that he is a frequent public liar
and he also confirmed that the mall report was correct in stating that Trump asked Lewandoski to help him obstruct justice by threatening the attorney general to stop investigating the president, but Lewandoski also turned the hearing into a circus by refusing to answer even the most basic questions and generally being a huge asshole to Democrats on the committee. How much of the hearing did you watch and what we are in this? impressions. I watched none of the hearing in real time same. I did. I lived my life and I'm happy about it. Sometimes you roll the dice- and you say- maybe other things will happen. We won't have to discuss this and I rolled the dice and lost, because here we are guys I did what I did was I like what I do. I went to Erin Report from boxing and I just he is a journalist to uses video to capture what's happening in real time to trouble vents, but he also did the little dusky hearing
we sort of he's like the Red zone of the Trump era, and so I washed all the highlights from that s O. I feel prepared for this conversation. So what What are your initial impressions of the hearing like? What do you mean? Because so I was Hey. I was not watching the here and I was watching the coverage of the hearing on what are going and so v. For However, many hours was what a circus, what a disaster Are you a lot of reporters? Both sides in this is like it's a it's a partisan circuits, and this is a something. This is why people hate Washington and both parties are crazy about, what's on, like a fox and now and suddenly. At the end, it got a little bit better once they had an actual lawyer questioning Corey Lewandowski instead of people just who just wish they played lawyers on tv which are politicians, I think they're, probably three takeaways, and we can maybe probably talk about each of these individually. One there is Corey Lewandowski is performance and what that says about modern conservatism, yeah we should.
It's important to start there. The second is the ways in which the hearing did not go well. For Democrats is directly tied to a larger conversation about the impeachment purgatory in which they're currently living and then the third part is if we were in an actual legal proceeding. The information in that hearing was incredibly damning to an obstruction of justice charge against Trump yeah, and so, let's start with first, you start with Cory. Corey Lewandowski is absurd. Figure piece like a not even a J V player is a freshman team republican operative who just the only guy who would go work for Trump. He didn't even get trouble acted. He got fired for being bad at his job and abusing physically abusing a reporter, yeah and just generally terrible human being, but his performance here today I think, is about more than just Kripalu dusky being after we human being, I think it sort of speaks to the
asshole ification of Republicans, which is the best way to succeed in republican politics right now, either as it influence, peddler in Washington or candidate out in the country is get the support of Trump in the best way to get the sort of Trump is to act like as big an to as many people as possible, and we Donald Trump who theoretically has a job like you. He there are tasks that come with the presence of either of these meetings that what you were supposed to attend. He tweeted out he thank Corey for his opening statement. Each without the video of Corey State and so Antojitos Corey got what he wanted, which is. It was a campaign which he did not treat it as you know here
where he was under oath to talk about potential crimes committed by the president. He treated it as his campaign launch for running for Senate in New Hampshire. We know this because you know, aside from the fact that he acted like a huge asshole and said all kinds of ridiculous bullshit. He asked for a break halfway through the hearing and then went outside and tweet it a website, that was potentially his campaign Senate website. So the whole thing was about trying to and then he figured he would defend Donald Trump and be loyal, because the way too, for a republican to win in two thousand and nineteen is to get the blessing of their mob leader Donald Trump. I mean eight right, everyone says it really did. Look like a tv mob trial, with a witness who is essentially agreeing to serve time for the boss, yelling at the prosecutors in the jury like it like in
That is what goes for. Loyalty is pleading the fifth for Donald Trump yeah. I mean you know the the memorable line from coral and as he that he said towards the end is. I have no obligation to be honest with the media because they're just as dishonest as anyone else, so one would think that for someone who is contemplating running for the Us Senate admitting in public that they lie all the time like he just did, it would be a campaign an ending move, not in today's republican Party. It's positive for Corey Lewandoski. The only thing he needed out of this hearing is for Donald Trump to shower praise on him, Donald Trump, who once fired him, so that wasn't necessarily a done deal, but he wanted Donald Trump to shower praise on him. So we can go to people in New Hampshire. Republicans in New Hampshire say doesn't matter if I lie doesn't matter. If I don't have the experience as a matter, if I'm a fucking buffoon all you need We know about me is I got the Donald Trump Seal of approval stamped on me. That's it! That's all. You need to know, vote for me and it might work and it might work and my primary in the primary yeah. Hopefully,
hopefully, will be a little different in the general Roger by noon. Getting in shape isn't just about losing weight. What's it about about learning, healthier habits and feeling better about yourself. I'm glad you asked whether that more stamina to keep up with your busy life finally getting into those gold gold jeans, more in tune with your body's needs or practicing more self care. Don't we all need a little more self care? I don't care but if you could use one program for all, your health and weight loss needs no more huh for training, apps and workouts or calorie trackers and meal plans, plus you can add a goal specialist, community of members that, like a suite of tools to keep you motivated and accountable, and it's like a workout best E. All in one place, I'll tell a story: ok,
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act voting rights all across the country, get honey for free and join honey, dot com, Slash p S, a that's, joined, honey, dot, com, slash, p S, a so what what a value actually came out of the hearing for Democrats who are looking to conduct these impeachment hearings, I think one of the goals of Nadler at all was to gather is made the point yeah. I think his arms and cracked that obstructing the Muller investigation is an impeachable offense yep, but also obstructing Congress's oversight into the president is also an appreciable effects. We know this because I was one of the articles of impeachment filed
as Richard Nixon's, and this was a demonstration of the effort of the Trump Administration to obstruct Congress's constitutional obligation to do checks and balances, and we have to Cortland Owski refused to answer questions because the White House and told him not to he was a starting privilege. Corey Lewandowski has never worked in the federal government, he is just say outside advice. Sure to trump. There is no such thing as executive privilege when it comes to someone who's never worked on the way home. Now it just know that you can't spent there's no such thing. It's made up, it's fucking crazy and he was operating under the explicit and public instructions of the White House to do this, which is what else, basically, putting up a sign that says impeach me on the front of the White House, and so that part of it was important. The other important part that we cannot forget that gets lost in all of the internal democratic debate about impeachment is Corey Lewandowski was forced to tell Congress, as he did, Mauler that
Trump asked his political henchmen to pressure the attorney general into ending a the investigation into the president, his campaign and his family. That is significant. That happened. The other thing it would take from that is. Corey Lewandowski is loyal to Donald Trump like no one else. He swim through a sewer with an open mouth for Donald Trump, and he refused to do this. It was order order so crazily illegal that he did not do it which, but that does not expect for that is, is not exculpate Trump, asking courtroom to ask you to do. That is a crime and we discussed major crimes in the President in Congress on LIVE Tv,
You would know that it was it's like buried in the like ten paragraph of some of the story. Look, you got somebody gotta get through nine to ten paragraphs of optics before you can get to the fact that is a rule of mountain journals. I will say when I woke up the day after the hearing. Some media outlets handle this right, like the top of playbook, talked about what we actually got out of the hearing of value, which I thought was great at the New York Times that it well too you know some other outlets didn't do as well. You know who you are, if you know who you are, that talked about the fucking objects before you talked about the fact that the president's political henchman confirmed the special counsel's belief that the President obstructed justice there you go here. He also by the way we found out that The the core lewandoski demanded immunity before he would talk to Bob Muller. So maybe or you will end key, you know it might be done something wrong possible, but he demanded we found out that he he admitted that he lied to the media
did immunity from the special counsel. We found out that Trump asked him to obstruct justice and that Trump asked him to obstruct congresses investigation by refusing to answer questions seem significant, but look we we should talk about the Democrats in like how this here and went right, because, while we learned all these things from Corey Lewandoski, we learn them at the end. When Berry Burk, a lawyer for the democratic staff questioned quarrel odessky before that it was a bit of a shit show So what is the sort of say about the democratic strategy around impeachment. Well. Let's deal with the lawyer verse first member questioning first, a lawyer should always do it right: a staff lawyer or if you're, in a situation where you have someone who was on the city as a member who is a trained litigator, an interrogator like Kamala Harris on the Senate, Judiciary Committee, and it's just the five minute time
limit where you have to waste. Two of your minutes in preamble is never enough time to actually get to the truth of anything because as soon as you get going, they hand it to some Republican, who's just going to throw gorilla dust in the air and and then we start all over again and so having an attorney. Do it, whether it's a staff attorney or one person over a sustained period of time is a much better that is never going to happen. It just will not, because members of Congress look in the mirror. They see Kathy like that, should that is just how it is, and we had a conversation we had after the bar. We had it after Michael Cullen. We had after Mark Zuckerberg, it's well or get a subject matter expert to ask questions like there's a couple. People in Congress who are good at this Adam Schiff is very good at it right. He was great in the Muller hearing. Nadler is good at it. Freshman member!
AOC very good at it. A lot of you just aren't so great, and this isn't like a fucking participation. Trophy exercise were, like everyone just needs to get there. A couple minutes to feel good about themselves like is that more important than making sure these hearings come off well and achieve their goal of br being public opinion around to wild, apply, the president needs impeaching or even just finding the truth. Forget public opinion right. It was actually like even like. So you take a seat who is great at this, but it's still five minutes and then you hand it off and so a better approaches with the democratic one Democrat doing it for some extended period of time, and then the republican staff attorney or member can do it for the same amount of time yeah with the public. We better informed by that for sure- and I I will say you know this- gives me pot. We should talk about this. A give me pause about sort of the broader democratic strategy or any strategy. Around impeachment hearings is the republican strategy. Here is very simple and it tracks with Trump's overall strategy. I think
in the election in two thousand and twenty and during his presidency, which is like when they can make things seem like a fucking circus like everyone's yelling, like all focused on, like small minutia of you, know, who's insulting who they went right like they know how to play. The media republicans know that if they scream and insult and yell at people, then the media won't report that, as republicans are screaming and yelling and insulting people in turning into a circus. The media will report it, as both sides are at fault, and partly they do that because they know they're going to get a rise out of the Democrats on the committee as well, and the Democrats will return the insults right, and so they can learn Democrats into the vortex of bullshit so that everyone's yelling at each other. This is going to be their strategy through impeachment. This is going to be
Donald Trump strategy in the two thousand and twenty election tally. One, that's how we wanted two thousand and sixteen, let's focus on small bullshit controversies and, let's forget the big things at stake here, and so my question is: do the House Democrats have the capacity to focus on the big, urgent steaks and the truth and not get drawn into the bullshit they got drawn into during the first all hours of the Lewin does gear. Now, and that's not I don't it's not even an indictment of the Democrats individually or collectively right. It is the way the system works advantages, the Republicans that is the way the tree works the way media works is we live in a both sides, world and republic? It is republican advantage to pull this into a contest of the lesser of two evils. Yeah add that is going to happen now. The whole frame in the election. I think it can theoretically like in a presidential race. You can change that Dynamic
in a one on one person against Trump takes a lot of lot of discipline, a lot of messages to b can do it and you could- and you do not depend as a presidential candidate, on the filter to be the primary sources really exactly to to my. People you can, you can run as you speak directly. You have that ability it's much harder in Congress. So it's this is it's very challenging, but you give yourself the best advantage to do. That is if you have a clear you're plan in a strategy that is obvious to the voters to the media, and you tell them where you were going right, like This is really important that these confusing situations like these you have to like we always yell about people's quote, unquote signal in the play and say what we're doing in a situation like this. To lay out a timeline, a process in a goal and say we're going to do this first. Our next step is this, and then this and you, you sort of tell them the story in advance, so they can follow along.
Yeah and you not just say it once say: oh you have to hit people in the media over the head with this kind of stuff over and over and over, because there's so much going on out there, and you just have to keep repeating the message now in fairness, one of the The problem is one of the reasons the Democrats can't do. This can't have a very clear strategy that they're communicate about impeachment is because they're divided on impeachment. So Political, published story, Wednesday night about the tensions between Judiciary Committee chairman, Jerry Nadler in Nancy Polo, see, who quote criticize the panels handling of impeachment. In harsh terms, complaining committee aides have advanced the push for ousting President Donald Trump. Far beyond, where the House Democratic caucus. Tans Democrats simply don't have the votes on the floor to impeach Trump Poulos. He said, and you can feel
free tow leak. This story came out on the heels of Nadler, telling W N Y C quote. Personally, I think the president ought to be impeached um and that he believes the house should act on impeachment, even if the Senate will not remove the president, because Congress has to quote vindicate the constitution. Meanwhile, policy then said of CO the windows key that she quote would have held him in contempt right then, and there, which many people are interpreting as a swipe at Nadler, what Dan a what the is going on here, what I don't know like. What is it I I I feel bad for dad, because now there is doing what he should be doing doing, what the cost
asian requires doing what is not only morally right, but what we have argued is politically astute, which is pushing forward on a number of hearings that will result, and hopefully, an impeachment. You know bringing articles of impeachment against president added states. What is Nancy Pelosi doing here's. What I think you have the policy is trying to do, which is is she has made the political assessment and it is informed by her members. Yeah right gives it yet we, it is It is important, we say. Nancy Pelosi is shorthand here and you can also make the argument that, if Nancy Poulos, he really wants something. She gets it and she could convince all these more moderate members or swing district members to go along with impeachment, and I think, there's a good argument. Then she could. But this is not just Nancy Pelow see. This is a lot of the people that we all elected in two thousand and eighteen, we campaign for them. We give to them, and it is. They gave me the book
this meant that Trump committed impeachable offenses, but because there will be no actual accountability for that other than a vote, the House and because public opinion is so someone impeachment. Therefore it is overly politically risky to do it because I think it would be different if you there was a belief, the Senate could if you could actually move Trump. I think people would have a different approach of this, but it is interpreted by some. I don't know where it is interpreted by some to be a show vote. Are you to put your race on the line for a show, for now I would argue you're putting your race on the line period. You are in a contest. Yeah. It's not like your Republican, a bonus going to drop off the ballot, if you were an rc and hide from the you can hide from politics, it's happening, but so like incredibly divided on this and, like we often make fun of the press for their he King missile, like look for, in disarray means that
really in disarray here like. That is a fact that you have them are our You have Jerry Nadler in Nancy Pelosi to leaders Congress. The two most important people for this car is going to be a trend completely on different pages and this speaker, of the house feeling like the Judiciary Committee has pulled her in a place or caucus does not want to go, and you have each Judiciary Committee and a lot of members feeling that the speaker is keeping them from where they want to go and they're telling everyone about it and with what As our here is. You know in the political story, says this man, he plus he has signed off on every move. The Jerry Nadler has made she signed off on the court document that state that this is an MP query so in and you know privilege I jayapal said this in the story too. She doesn't want to. Say the word impeachment, but she signed off on all the documents which again I like. If Nancy Pelosi just wanted to go out and say, look, I know that he should be impeached
I think it's bad politics, I'm never going to be for it against this. It's just a bad idea, and that's that I would seriously disagree with her, but I might that more and my respect a strategy more than what she's trying to do right now, which is have it both ways, which is you know, okay, we're going to let Jerry either go forward a little bit, but then I'm gonna to pull back and then I'm going to take swipes at am in caucus. Me settings? And then I'm going to say things like you should have. Corey Lewandowski in contempt when I'm against impeachment, like what are you doing, I feel like the strategy of trying to have it both ways and straddle this is the worst of all worlds. One of the most important lessons that I learned for our time in the White House was. Most of the time. No decision is worse than a bad decision and we're living in the no decision, particularly situation where situation is a five thousand one and forty nine proposition and re people can be on either side of that whether everyone agrees, it's the right thing to do.
Where people are disagreeing about, it's the politics of it, and it is a fair political question to ask. Since the only thing This will be doing, is putting a scarlet eye on Trump, They're not gonna, remove him from office, so it is fair to debate the politics of that And people coming down either side of it. We think it's the right politics, although the last few weeks of cost me some concern yeah. That me too no, I mean I look the reason that we think it's good politics. The reason we're for impeachment. Aside from that, it's the morally right thing to do, and then he deserves to be impeached
Is that we've argued that the Democrats can put on essentially a show and and hold public trials and public hearings, where there's enough media attention on that, that up people and- and you know, Merrick and people who are not yet on board- watch these hearings and say yeah. This guy does deserve to be impeached. Yeah he's come a lot of crimes, yeah he's really corrupt, and maybe, if I'm on the fence may refer to now, I I do need to come out and vote against him and make sure that the news is filled with stories about Donald Trump's, corruption and his wrongdoing, so that the news is not for, with all kinds of stories about the Democrats, the democratic nominee. That's that would that's our calculation, but that depends on the Democrats running a good impeachment hearing in running a tight ship and not falling into their trap and I'm not sure they can do it. Ma'am, it's everything today it's been concerning. I just want to say one more point on it. Pussy 'cause, I just want. I think we should be
her in this, and I think people can make We disagree with what has happened today. We do disagree with her position on impeachment, and people have every right to be to do that. I think the credit of Nancy Pelosi has to be rooted, though, in the reality of her position, which is, she could not tomorrow, say we're going to impeach Trump and just do it, the speaker of the house is more is not a dictator. They really keep like this idea that everyone's, like Frank under Water, Lyndon Johnson, my twisting arms make, but that's not how Congress works at most she's a shepherd. She is moving a bunch of sheep trying to get them to go and in the right direction. And they are not doing that now she could say so. I don't think you could say you're to were definitely impeaching. I'm gonna make sure that happens. She could see were definitely not impeaching yeah. I was, I think she could say yeah. And so that is that that is the choice that I think lies before her and her Congress's is at some point: do you just pull the band aid off?
and the sooner you do that either the sooner you say now, the It said something the floor, we're gonna deal with it or we're not going to do it then at least they're a strategic clarity and we could figure out what we're doing, but right now it is a swamp of terrible name add it is concerning. No one is no one is benefiting by what's happening right now, not the people who wanted to implement it would only each mint is actually helping trump because it is distracting from it is like the impeachment, because we're talking about the impeachment process and we're not talking about the impeachable offenses that's what it comes to. That was the cloud over yesterday's hearing or Mondays. It would ever date out here it's all process, that's what we're talking about, because that's all that's happening, and we cannot get enough media coverage of the substance that that's where we did start today. Um. That's not that's! Not what the divisions within the Democratic Party or what's driving, the narrative, which is fourteen
it, to say the least. Okay, let's move on President Trump's, been in California this week, where he announced that he will use the power of the federal government to prevent our state from setting higher emission standards for our cars to go further on a gallon of gas and not contribute as much to human extinction. This past summer, four of the major auto companies made a deal with California to meet the state's fuel economy standard, instead of just satisfying federal rules which are lower, but even though some of the biggest automakers themselves support California's position, Trump said that he's getting rid of the waiver that allows California to do this. California officials have already announced plans to sue once the administration has officially taken the action so much for the states. Rights party huh so much for that big scary federal government coming in to take over to trample on your rights. Donald Trump wants to make it more expensive for you to drive your car. That's it! That's it auto companies, the people who are profiting from all this bullshit are saying yeah we'll make
cars that go further on a gallon of gas. We will agree to do that here in California, more so than other cars other made across the country and yet and yet Donna doesn't want that to happen now, he's saying. Oh, this is about cheaper cars, but that is bullshit. This is about oil company profits. What is that with a Y is Trump's justification, so bullshit here, well because it is cheaper for consumers in the long run, to have more fuel, efficient cars, right like whatever you, whatever you save in the short like, and also we're in this world, now we're all of these auto makers because of the market are realizing that the market demands are with the few. What people want is cars that consume less gasoline because they can pay less for gas. It's not just it's. It's chiefly about making sure that you know one of the biggest emitters of carbon which our cars in transportation sector in general. You know, emit less carbon. Of course, that's going to help save the planet, but it's
we're going to save people in the long run. If you do have to fill up less and Donald Trump's just coming in here and by the way and what happens in California fact source of the country, because California is such a big market right that now, if Donald Trump has his way, you know they'll be more gas guzzlers, that's! Basically what he's fighting for and oil companies will be Richard like that, that's what it is! So that's that's one attack that Trump has launched on California. He's also become obsessed with homelessness in cities. Like L A in San Francisco last week, the Washington Post broke the story that the administration is actively considering plans to crack down on homeless camps here in Cali cornea and possibly move people into facilities run by the federal government. Federal officials have apparently looked at a historic building over by L A x as a potential site for such a shelter when traveling on air force. One on his way out here Trump said that quote: we can't let LOS Angeles, San Francisco and numerous other cities destroyed themselves by allowing what's happened
and lamented that homelessness issues are ruining quote the prestige of these cities. He also said that he's personally heard complaints from people like four real estate- investors, who are deeply concerned about how tense and homeless people are affecting their property values. So why is trouble says with this issue? Why did he suddenly decide to care about homelessness and and our cities here in California, because deep in his dark? So all there was a glimmer of empathy? No, it is trump. No, it isn't Morton, to Trump's political narrative, to tell a story of cities which are a proxy for places inhabited by liberal, leads and of color right as to how these favorite groups of people as as threatening hellholes
editor in over run with immigrant that are encroaching a pot they're gonna they're gonna hate it there so much they're going to move to your suburb or your role town, and so it is that, like the exact thing that a seventy plus year old White guy from Queens right, his brain was pickled in the eighties. Thanks right, like the it, it's a very simplistic racist view of cities, yeah, there's, there's a there's a political benefit here, as there is with everything the Donald Trump does, and you can see it in the electoral results. Even since two thousand and sixteen where you know american politics today, it can be. You know one way you can look at it. Is this deepening divide between urban areas in this country in rural areas, in this country, urban and suburban areas in rural and ex urban areas and Donald Trump wins with grievance politics, and he wins with fear and
He is trying to make his America in the rural areas and ex urban areas, afraid of the cities and end and angry about the city's, because he wants to continue deepening that divide. So he isolates people who live in the cities as bad, whether it's people of color, whether it's immigrants, whether it's liberals. Those people are bad they're taking all of our money, they're draining our resources. They are filled with dangerous well, they are a blight on America. I am fighting the war against the cities and the liberals in the immigrants on your behalf. That is his message. He's also angry because he's unpopular in those places yeah, that's part of it too. I mean we should also just. It is important to acknowledge that homelessness, is a huge problem in the cities and when you left it is it's a huge problem and it's a huge problem that you know the Democrats haven't come up. You know a failed enough Democrats haven't come up with a solution, or at least a workable solution. There's plenty of great policies out there, not a lot of workable solutions yet, and there is,
this issue and the reason that people are homeless is multi variable right there it is, it can be there are regulations in California that are making it incredibly hard to housing cost housing. Cost changes in the economy went to Peoria there's a whole set of things that they put massive inequality, economic inequality. So not people don't have the there's, not a silver bullet solution. I know this horrible solution is not. However, the federal government, rounding up the homeless people and putting them in a camp which is what Channel Trump proposed, and we just what it was like in the night paragraph of the story like we have you talked about it since then it is one the most crazy things that it was said a long time. It's incredibly scary, it's incredibly de humanizing, it's like you know, years and years on H, B, o come to life here. The way that trump I mean. I know that that homelessness is is a problem. It is a crisis. This is not
trump talks about it, though quote we have people living in our best highways are best streets, are best entrances to buildings and pay tremendous taxes where they went to those locations because of the prestige in men cases they come from other countries and they moved to LOS Angeles with they move to San Francisco because of the prestige of the city and all of a sudden, they have tents, hundreds and hundreds of tents and people living at the entrance to their office building, and they want to leave in Donald Trump's mind. The problem is not the thousands and thousands of people who have fallen on hard times,
who probably worked um, you know probably had homes at one point lost their job lifetimes can't afford the cost of living with their families. They take that you know they have children they're in and out of homeless shelters like that's, not the problem. The problem is that those people are a blight on the city. It is the most dehumanizing thing you could say it is. It is scary, toe listen to a leader, dehumanize people like he has done like. I think the way to think about it as Donald Trump does not care about the person who has to sleep in the street. His concern about homelessness is about the person was to step over person sleeping in the street yeah, and it's very and it's very scary. You know that, like he's aren't you know, he's already. Has this war on immigrants, specifically immigrants of color right, not the ones from Norway, of course, um, and you know now, he's. Moving from that to homelessness right, he's, trying to sort of siphon off parts of the population that he deems either.
Dangerous or a blight on the city's or whatever it's. It's really really This is very Giuliani, New York City type politics on steroids I would I would the power of the federal government with a part of our government- and I think the language to that is is- is really amped up. What kind of you know what what are Democrats doing about that we're gonna plans of Democrats had I saw the bird me, ah has a housing for all plan, which I think is is great it's you know, I think it's two and half trillion dollars over ten years and um. You know he aims to end homelessness and enact a national cap on, rant on rent takes, we saw, you know better workers are here this week. He he toward skid row in in LOS Angeles and and and talk to a homeless people in homes out to get so that's good. But I don't know if you seen. How do you think Democrats should handle this? I think the there you're gonna to need a whole series of approaches, Medicare for all to be like some element of this. Is mental health right Medicare for all or
or some of these other universal health care plan to expand access to healthcare would keep people more access to mental health services. We have to deal with substance issues. Bernie I drugs all week is exactly right that we have to make housing more affordable in this country. It is unaffordable in the cities and is pushing people out and out to the streets and also and so it's like this is the nimby problem right now, hi backyard right, there's a lot of like wealthy liberals who say that they want to care about homelessness. But when you start building, affordable housing and their neighborhood say absolutely not, they need to be get the shelter somewhere else right. So that's a huge problem too. So there are a lot of problems here, but like Don terms and hears about any of these problems. This is a political wedge issue for him, and you know he's seems to be obsessed with California, for a very specific reason think offering doesn't love him right. It's in its liberal and it's ah it's a caricature of everything that Donald Trump wants to talk about in this campaign. So he,
comes out here to make sure that our cars are more expensive, scapegoats, homeless people and then, He spends the night in Beverly Hills. Raising fifteen million dollars for his campaign from the richest people. Just in if you were wondering, what's going on behind the scenes, while Donald Trump is engaging in his culture war, he is. Trying to steal as many of the make himself richer when his campaign take as much of the nation's resources, he can for himself destroying the planet to own the libs, that that's it okay. When we come back, we will be talking to you about a campaign manager. David Plouffe parts of America is brought to you by blue apron, a great dinner, is more than farm fresh ingredients, but that is a great place to start With blue apron, seasonally inspired and chef curated recipes you're, not just making dinner, you're making memories thanks John.
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Nope come on help. The kids help yourself make sure you get paid back by love it when he takes money from you, it's the cash up, it's the cat, that is the cash out on the pod. Today, the host of the brand new podcast campaign, H Q, the drops today and the author of the forthcoming book, a city guide to beating Donald Trump Obama, campaign manager and White House senior adviser David Fluff fluff here in studio, so great to be here in studio check out the Krooked Empire. This is exciting. We haven't had you here yet that meeting in early two thousand and seven we talked about our future careers podcasters this is it. This is where we all landed. When Iowa, we can win the presidency and we can start change America and then change podcasting better than being on dancing with the stars. Yes, it just barely! It is an important, doesn't improvement, I'm pretty was that we do not talk about that today. Michael did if we wanted in the outline, and we refused because we're bigger than that right now.
Really all I want to talk about your podcast in your book, but let's talk about two thousand and twenty first we're almost a year out from the election. Would you assess the pole local environment right now heading into two thousand and twenty sort of the overall fundamentals for the general election yeah: let's do the general. Well, knowing that we obviously we don't have a nominee yet and that's a big piece of the puzzle. Yeah I mean so. Let's start there, the big things that will determine our to the state of the economy or we at war in the Middle EAST, strength of the democratic nominee, strength of the campaign trump runs. So those are the big things and on the plus side of the ledger? If you want to get rid of the you know sociopath in office, Ad approval numbers across the board, hard Reelect Numbers quite low most of the head to heads with some of the potential democratic candidates in most battleground states, not great but you know this time. If I remember eleven, we were given about a twenty percent chance to win. So a lot can change and
What concerns me is, I think, Trump's gonna get astronomically high turnout yeah. So you look at Florida and sixteen million more people voted there. Some went for Hillary, but Trump got about one slash: two: one million more votes in Romney. You look at for what Bush in Ohio. I think that's what we need to prepare for. So, if you're modeling, what does it take to win? Wisconsin, Arizona, North Carolina Pennsylvania, you better give Trump massive turnout. You see what he's trying to do is trying to drive up the third party vote last time. It kinda just happened, but you know Santa side. You won't be able to eat hamburgers you, to fly? You want to use your car there's a smart strategy behind that, so so I'd still rather be the Democrat than him, but I think we also know he's going to overperform his national poll numbers in most battleground states. So we better prepare for an epic battle. It to come down to a point or two now. If we really do slide into recession, then I think this could break open but absent that I think it's going to be super tight and I don't even know who I'm going to vote for yet much. Who, I think is the strongest Canada. I think that'll come into clay.
Being January February. I know we need a candidate, so, let's think about Wisconsin who can get a fee, D eight or six year old iron worker who might have voted for Trump back and get the kids on the college campuses and the young african american community in Milwaukee fired up have to do both this isn't a base or persuasion question. It's both. In the list of states. You just gave you included Arizona North Carolina. You did not include Ohio Iowa in Florida. Do you think, Our our Ohio and Iowa but unlikely to be in play this time, and what do you think the state of Florida is well, my sense is the six core battlegrounds will be Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Arizona, North Carolina and Florida. Now Florida Trump's going to get massive turnout, but we just lost. You know Gillam, almost one great candidate, but was also under investigation. That hurt him. That's it
that's a problem in elections. We problem in election. I think Nelson wasn't the strongest candidate in that race against God, and we want it twice narrowly. So I think floor gonna, be and when you know, if you register enough voters down there and do a good job on on so and given that is twenty nine electoral votes. So it's those six. I think whether Ohio and Iowa, Texas and Georgia and play those gonna be the tough to see and made by our nominees campaign, and it probably depends on who they are and their appeal trump is gonna. Look at Minnesota closely. Obviously I didn't think that will be about a crown No, I don't think there's a scenario where Trump loses mission. And in Pennsylvania wins Minnesota. It's not a tipping point, but he'll put pressure there. I don't know why he's going into Mexico um, but you know probably look again in Nevada in New Hampshire would be my guess so, but I think the six are three upper Midwest States Arizona, North Carolina Florida? Listen it's not crazy have a scenario where the Democrat wins Pennsylvania: Michigan Back loses Wisconsin but gets Arizona. Same number of electoral votes is Wisconsin, so you gotta play there. I think, with the caveat that obviously
the nominee should be have have a message that speaks to all voters like what who are the groups of voters that you would be spending most time and resources talking to is the nominee well so it was conscious as an example, we have numbers so in six teen, Hillary God. I think twenty, nine or thirty thousand votes less than Obama in Milwaukee. Now Trump won by twenty three thousand, so you could say, let's just take The turnout thing we win. Do we really want to go into the margin of error of seven thousand votes, but she got two hundred and fifty thousand less votes in comma in all the exorbitant rural areas, six hundred thousand less in Ohio. So you gotta look at it. What what are the cohorts? One we've got to do a ton frustration we've got a massive turnout problem, so that's all base. We've got to keep people off third parties because if Trump has to get to fifty percent or even forty, nine dot, five battle grounds. I don't think he can do it he's going to want to win again at forty seven or forty eight, and then there are parts.
Will voters and who are they well? Those trump Obama. Voters odors, as we know, do exist, there's also people who voted for Clinton in the suburbs, particularly some women's urban voters who may be open to trump this time, so don't like his personal behavior, but the economy is working well for them. So the our campaign. Our nominee will have a very good sense of that, but you've got to look at it is you've got it. You've got to get enough from each of those buckets particularly when you, I think model out trumps turn out a. I think you need to assume it's going to be higher than you can imagine and if it's not great, but I think the folks in the mag hats are coming out and I think they can come out with huge strength, and so we need to have a candidate. That's able to drive registration and turn out, keep you know, particular young voters off third party candidates and then enough of a turnout persuasion, so so look at Wisconsin what, if you're, not gonna, get two hundred fifty thousand of those votes back that flip from Obama that a tree you know Trump, but maybe you get fifty or a hundred grand. So so I think that's where the folk
has to be, and we know that Trump is vulnerable. With these voters on corruption, on trade and tariffs, on healthcare, on taxes the the where he's vulnerable with those voters? It are the same places he's normal with some of these Obama drop off voters? Third party voters like do you Basically, do you think that there is a message that can sort of stitch all of these constituencies together yeah. What I'm not suggesting is we have different messages for different courts. I mean that the challenge here in a necessity is a candidate who can say the same thing in a rural area, in an urban area college campus. Retirement home and have that work. So you know fighting economy that works for everybody and corruption, getting healthcare for everybody we were building our alliances and and not fight dumb wars. All of these things can work with everybody and so, but but that it's things the messaging, but I think you need hopefully a candidate in a campaign. That's got the mixture of
operation organization and capitalize on that deep, a lot of there's been a lot of concern. Is these debates have gone forward that the Democrats are moving too far left to win the exact set of voters that you're talking about in the exurbs of Wisconsin or wherever else do you share that concern well, I think most people in this country are locked into how they're going to perform, and I think that I'm not overly concerned about it, because I think once you get to in general election is not just going to be. What our nominee says about health care, but it's compared to the destruction. Trump is brought onto the health care system, and so so, but I do think that um. I am concerned about the health care debate because I do think that I think that Sanders and Warren and Harris they're all doing a good job of talking about you're still gonna be I have your doctor and we're just basically changing the way that health care gets administered, but I think a lot of
but there's even a lot of Democrats probably concerned about losing private insurance overnight. So I am concerned about that issue, but Let's look at Trump, I mean so. You won't have a debate about healthcare. We're talking about how to get everybody covered and he's doing. Everything then, to deny coverage pre existing conditions attacking women on health care. So I think there's a lot of weaponry there, but whoever it listen. I don't see anybody on the stage that last week who can't win it all, possible. Any of them could lose like. I think we ought to just plan accordingly that this is going to be a coin flip election which candidates. You think are running, particularly smart campaigns honestly, for me, I won't answer that question people start voting, 'cause, that's what matters did they do, what they need to in Iowa in South Carolina and Super Tuesday. Then then, there's no bullshit, it's just like did they run the kind of campaign they needed, say that warns, probably the most consistent from a imessage standpoint. I think she's the crispus candidate I'm not in Iowa these days as much as I'd like to be, but you hear that
most of them are putting together pretty good organizations in Iowa. Now that's one state? And so I think one of the interesting things is who is able to do it in New Hampshire, Nevada, South Carolina and begin to plan accordingly, for the March states have almost most of the country the delegates are going to be awarded in March, so you've got to be prepared. Not just to do well and execute a good organization in the early states. I think Warren's probably been the most impressive so far in just terms of like she clean seems to have. I think, the clear. Sense of why she's running? I think she communicates it in an effective way, but she's. Also now you know there's a chance in a couple of weeks here, she's going to be the frontrunner and so we'll see how she deals with those spotlights and that's the thing about this process is, I, I think, It won't be till middle of June, maybe even the third week of June, to begin have some sense of how this man unfold and part of that how to Canada to deal with this of June,
I'm sorry of January. This layout right plus drop the bomb of a brokered convention right here. Well, I did have Greg Shultz on my first podcast but by his campaign manager- and you know they're not assessing the odds of huge but they're planning first scenario. I mean what, if you have three candidates emerge into March, we may not, maybe it'll be too and none of them are getting. You know more than forty percent of the vote. You know you could up with somebody. You know maybe they'll be Clear leader in terms of pledged delegates from a plurality standpoint, maybe not majority, but I, in January. You know the race we are literally like candidates, are still stretching. I mean it so early me look what John where did John you're on that race you know we were left for dead at this later for two thousand and three, and so we were kind of left for dead. At this point back in seven yeah yeah, that's right! You know,
So massively by Jimmy Carter, like on the democratic side, our stuff tends to break a little bit late. So so, right now it looks like well, it's got to be Biden, Sanders or Warren. There's no room for anybody else, but history suggests that there probably will be an opening for one or two of these candidates. And do you think that opening is likely to be I'm from a different generation, given the fact that you have three candidate it's around. The age of seventy have been on the political stage for Biden and Sanders. Obviously, for decades in Warren is been a well known political figure for a decade. Well, I think the rest of the contenders are younger than they are. They span kind of mid thirties to that case, MID fifties, but I think you already sing in Iowa, so I don't want to talk too much about polls, because you know I didn't DR not the there right, but you know you see, the polling even over the last week. That's come out both in Iowa nationally you're, starting to see that delta between the polls nationally in Iowa, Cousin Iowa. It's where the campaigns happening, and so you see you know Marpi tire in with then India's national. I think Harris might be a little bit higher
and so they're birth on tv and they're, both on tv, you know still matters. You know in Iowa and everywhere. So I think that what's about Iowa is if by then or warren- and you could maybe argue sanders- don't come in first in Iowa, you know maybe they'll be able to recover, but it's a setback. But if, if a mayor Peter COM, Laura Beto or Chlo Bitch are coming in. Third. You know that's a massive victory, and so so Much of what happens in this primal depend on how the chips fall. So let's say we come out of South Carolina and Biden still doing well, or at least you know at strong enough position to win he doesn't have like Harris or Booker in the final three, let's say: well, he's probably going to be the candidate that's going to be best without can american voters, but if it's him, in Warren or Sanders Anna Harris or Booker he's much of this depends on how the chips fall in terms of who the semi, finals and finals are him and the camera. True, don't have any control over that, so I think that's an important thing to pay attention.
Who is because, again after South Carolina, this thing's going to happen with such velocity now in seven in eight Hillary was obviously leading obey among african american voters until we won Iowa and then it change almost overnight and Barack Obama goes on to win South Carolina, I've seen a lot of people saying okay, well yeah Biden's got this massive lead with african american voters right now, if it was Warren wins Iowa all bets are off. Do you think that sort of automatic thing that happens in every case, or it was it unique to us or what your thoughts on that. Well, we were, african american candidate right. So I think that that's where, like, if Kamala Harris we're able to do well in Iowa and New Hampshire, get some momentum in South Carolina. I think she's going to eat into binds african American whether like a Warren or Sanders, can you know, I think it depends? First of all on know: who's really strong heading into South Carolina. So if, if it really
is Warren Sanders and Biden? Let's say that scenario. You know, Biden probably still should be considered the favorite, both in that stable in african american voters, but with Biden, were to come in third in Iowa and coming forth. New Hampshire is really struggling. You know momentum is a powerful, powerful thing in politics and not having momentum is a powerful thing. So so that's. Where When I had Greg on you know he was very clear, but you know, they're not expecting to win all the early states, but you have do well enough to keep the momentum in the balloon. I thought that was, I loved you to unpack well, because I thought that was fascinating. When I was listening to campaign h, Q, um and Greg Shelters, but his campaign manager is He did start talking like okay. We may not win a couple of these early states, but the media needs to pay attention to the delegates. Could you sort of explain his argument and delegates in general for people who might not understand that yeah? So thank you for the
by the way, subscribe download at apple or wherever you get your podcasts. You guys do better than they are going to campaign HQ. Thank you, Pfeiffer talking, so uh that ultimately most people realize that the presidential election is about one number, two hundred and seventy electoral votes. That's all the matters we'd like to change it. System not going to happen. So only thing that matters really in a primary races. Nineteen thousand one hundred and ninety delegates, so that's the number of pledged delegates you need and we change the rules, so superdelegates won't put on the first ballot and I believe, Whoever leads the pledged delegates and super delegates are not going to overturn that of the voter. So whoever lead is probably going to win. So I but Greg is saying from the Biden standpoint is: they think they have strength amongst african american communities, blue collar Democrats in every congressional district in the country. So that they lose a state. They win. A state. They're are going to be getting delegates and I think the delegates, a report, proportional by state by CD, so there
no doubt that you know Biden's is not gonna go overnight from where he is today to five percent. But but if you, if you start losing particularly one front runners, lose if they keep losing So if I were to lose Iowa and New Hampshire and Nevada in South Carolina, no matter what organization he has no matter what demographic key strength he had before Iowa will begin to lose it so Biden. Has to do enough. I think in the early states so so yeah, I think from a potential standpoint. You see how They could run all the way till June and be acquiring delegates, but that's only if he look like you could win right and if he, is not meeting sort of. Standard he needs to hit in the early states. So that's really and they all have different standards again for Mayor Peter Kamala, it's not winning Iowa, it's surprising people with a two or three finish, or maybe a close fourth. I think for Biden WAR, and it's probably going to be. They need to win enough early yeah, like in the past, like Bill Clinton famously was the one candidate
who won the nomination, that winning I would you have sure. I always not contested that your because Harkin was running for so I was Senator Tom Harkin during President. He was the comeback kid by come. A surprise, second- and I was in the National media- was able to carry that narrative to give him momentum in the subsequent. Do you think in our current media environment you could still get away with that sort of with with a narrative victory as opposed to an actual victory. You look at so I was you know, because of park, a non event so really New Hampshire was the only event and he, come in second, so, Sir second, in New Hampshire heading the rest the calendar. In any scenario is not bad, and then you know he ended up facing off really in the first part of the prime, with Paul Tsongas, who great center, not a great presidential candidate, strong, strong, then Jerry Brown. So I Think in this scenario, it's harder because you know, if somebody supposed to win I or come in second and doesn't do that they're going to get pulverized not just by
hundreds, but by voters and like it's going to be your a stone, cold loser. How can you recover from that? I mean imagine We head in. If, if we had a New Hampshire? No wait in today's social media environment. It was hard enough to dig out from that yeah. Like, I still think we would have, but I think it would have been really really hard. So I think it is harder So that's why I think you need to have a pain. That says we are focused on delegates were focused all the way till June, but if you don't go through those first gates with enough strength, your plan, are, I think, going to be more on paper than reality. So you got to hit the mark you, a little bit about how a campaign deals with the knee the absolute necessity to do incredibly well in Iowa, but also be prepared in the next three early stage, and the general because, like for example, was reported political last night that Kamala Harris is putting all of her chips in Iowa she even told Senator Mazie Hirono, the cheese quote: fucking moving, but Iowa
In a world like these campaigns are raising less money, then we raised in two thousand and eight, and so how you run a serious, serious Iowa campaign and ensure that you have built a surfboard to catch whatever wave you have in the in the following states. Well, it's become a little bit easier than eight in terms of fundraising, recruiting volunteers, because we obviously weren't internet first campaign, but there's so many more tools to do that now. So that's your main, I think device to do that. But you know if the candidates. Time is going to be mostly in Iowa. That doesn't mean you're, not hiring organizers and staff. In South Carolina in Nevada, certainly New Hampshire and in some of at least in the caucus states in March, and have enough money to run a vote by mail probe, I'm in California and Florida. Some of the big states have come art. So it's super complicated. So if you are strapped in basically you're not hiring staff in all those states, And you're really naked on March, better all in Iowa and you do what you need to do in Iowa
definitely behind the eight ball. So the good thing is you you get. You know the card that says you can move on in the race, but you probably won't a we capitalized but but you know, I think, some people- that's their only option, but if you're be the nominee. You've got to have organization in the other. Three early states and you've got to have a theory of the case in March April and the money- and I would even argue in some states boots on the ground to begin organizing and again, a lot of that distributed. You don't ever have to have a huge staff, but you've got to be getting voter lists out to your supporters and ask him to call and say you know in Minnesota. Colorado and in Georgia you gotta be working. It I mean it's one of the benefits. We had back in eight as we had such active, passionate volunteers, organizing even before he had staff on the ground, so So it's a great question Dan and the other thing just did the race it's hard to describe the difference between the first four than the rest of the calendar yeah. It's in a way like almost peaceful and calm, 'cause you're like an Iowa and your New Hampshire and and then it's like holy shit.
Were like, I got a bunch of states in a week, yeah right and one severly boating, and so it's it's. It's almost like a completely different event. So the Democrats strategy around digital media communication is of great concern to us. Your empathy of America. You just joined the board of Acronym, which is a digital media startup. He took a why you did that. Why you see this is such an urgent matter and and sort of the work that they're doing well acronym led by terra Mcgowan. Just a great leader is doing great work in a few ways. They did a lot of digital work in the eighteen elections. They have art in Virginia and intend to expand this to other states. A progressive media companies so that we're proud more localized content, which I think we have a huge deficit in our party but we've also decided to do what we can to try and raise some money and do some smart messaging work in the battle states, because the presidential election has started there's only, one side on the field, it's trump and we to be with voters. We
talked about on this program in those six bad round states communicating to them every day we have to know who they are in the best way to motivate them and feed them content, because the Trump campaign is doing it and they're going to intensify it. So I don't want to overstate the importance like who are nominee is state of the economy. All that matters more this election. We better assume will be decided on the margins. So things like that matter and Trump has nine to ten months on his own to be run messaging and get more sophisticated and out of like Facebook, ads and mostly Facebook, add some instagram ads. You know I think I need to let the data drive that decision. Some people still primarily get information from from radio television, but for the most part, it's digital and so every day, dance great about quitting these out. You see these amazing stories about the trade war or the corruption or how farmers are getting hurt or health care. We see them and were like well. How could anybody vote for Trump? The voters we need to reach aren't seeing them. So any kind of a last mile to get those to those voters in a consistent way, almost think we need
it's. You know we want to do our part acronym, but but all of these outside you need to take on the responsibility of basically you're the democratic nominee from an advertising standpoint till we have a nominee, it can't just be episodic, because the Trump pain. We had such an advantage in twelve as an incumbent. We had time to prepare for that race so the voters in those states from a general election better than Romney, as did George W Bush Bush added at a Clinton. So trump campaign is going to be much more ready for the general election than our site. Is we ever seen a president DIS obsessed with reelection, it's fair to say Barack Obama had more than a passing interest in serving a second term, but, as I'm sure, George Bush and record, but this is all trump cares about. You know is his Harang these around the country. You know if you know so so they're going to be ready and they're spending money now not just to build their list and they're volunteering donor base, but they're spending money in battleground states. So I want us to get to the where every week we're seeing you know at least several
one thousand dollars spent these, and eventually more than that, so that you know we're basically providing what bridge we can until we have a nominee, particularly Trump's, trying to define the Kratz. As you know again they want to kill babies. They want to take your food away, ok. You won't be able to travel and we can laugh at this stuff. There are some voters out there who will say. I'm not sure I can do that, so I may not vote for Trump, but I may vote third Party like this is incredibly important. I think our listeners, who may not have been as die, old into the two thousand and twelve campaign is obviously we were Tens of purposes Obama won reelection in the next six months of the cycle. It was basically we were written, offer dead in August of two thousand and eleven, and we are, I think, our our see people average was like forty two and we were at forty nine by Christmas, which was our number on election day because we were doing it. The Republicans were themselves on fire and there
outside apparatus, which was spending money against us, but just doing it and fortunately, for us, a piss poor, yes as backwards way, but they they were investing. The outside groups were investing more in defeating Obama, into at this zero dot. Two thousand and eleven, then the outside groups are investing in defeating Democrat, got secrets investing in defeating trump. Yes, thus far, it's kind of a barren field. So right, I'm hoping you know actually actually acronym puts out a list every week of the digital spent in an email. I got every week, it's the most depressing about, but you know my hope is over the next three to four months. We see more and more progressive and I in the what really matters to me, is less the overall spend and what's being spent in the battleground states right Can you tell us a little bit about why you have decided to become a podcast host and what campaign h Q's all about- and I also wanna hear a little bit about your book- a citizen's guide to defeating Donald Trump, which I believe is out in March March. Okay, great March third, well first the book. So you know private question
I've gotten most often in my very long. Unfortunately, political life is from people out in the country. In states is what can I do? What more can I do simply saying first of all from someone who's run, presidential campaigns why volunteer work is important. The difference it can make how you registering. Five voters in Michigan may not seem like a lot, but if just to one thousand other people in mission did the same thing. That's like the wind margin in Michigan, so it matters sharing content. I think a lot of us. I know I've made this mistake. We get on social media and share a lot of content about Donald Trump, but we need to basically be a distri, did army for our nominee. Their health care plans are tax plans are form he plans on that island and so so travel the battleground states making a list of everybody in your life and make sure they're registered voting early. Like part of the stitch of my book. Is you actually need to take more responsibility than you may be comfortable with we can assume that our nominee is going to be the Savior
assume, the presidential campaign will do everything right and trouble. Do everything wrong? What can you control that's different for everybody, but I lay out a set of ideas for and again it's not all the ideas, but you know creating your own content, so if you've got a neighbor who voted for Trump was voting for Obama. Take your phone out film, put it on your social media channels like just you've, gotta like every. A think through what can I do, and so I think that the ownership- I'd say. The ownership we all have to take over this election is even greater than we saw in our organization in the Obama races. I really do. Podcast live First of all, the question is: what can I say that you guys aren't saying you guys kind of have a lot of things covered? No, no, I mean you know the wilderness and your notes. So for me, giving my background as a manager. I just wanted to kind of go a little deeper on the race. You know in the primary, a lot of that's about the race for delegates and the operation, putting together your question Dan to go the distance, talk to managers and digital directors and state directors. So
we go a little bit deeper on the race and then, when we get to the general election, go deep in the battle grounds and really so less about you know what was that week and more about really looking at a pathway to victories both in the democratic primary in the general election, So in over the year since you left the White House, you- and I have been in a lot of meetings together with political people and you have always introduce yourself as David Plaaf, I'm retired, from politics. This. Eight, a temporary on retirement from politics. Well, it's not like you know, working in a campaign, h, Q. You know twenty hours a day, but the for me You felt, like you know, on the podcast. I think there is a market out there of people who are following these races closely, who maybe I can bring a little bit perspective and, more importantly, have conversations with guest to fill that, but my work, acronym- definitely is coming out of retirement a little bit um. I think I first of all the digital on for,
Lee um. I don't want to overstate this because you know when you guys were a big part of helping this. We had a great two thousand and eighteen election victories. So let's not overstate the republican advantage on digital messaging, but they're testing a lot more content than we are. I think there are more digital first and we are so that's a gap but you know this election may be one of the most important days in american history, not just election history. We got win, you, you know eight years of this guy versus four. So again, I think for all of us who running. These campaigns aren't the candidate we gotta think through. What can we do? Most of that's gonna be on the margins, but margins matter. So you know, but I also think we ought to be mindful that you don't want in politics. Kind of you know a verb space cowboys. All of us have done this for coming back in and saying in the good old days of like eight or ninety six, how it happened like thing,
changed now that we used to say so. Eso won of things I'm excited about my podcast is I'll get toe. You know obviously have on people like Greg Schultz from Biden who I know, but also some people who were you know weren't even around in the o, a campaign who are new to this and I'll learn from them, so so that that sort of fresh blood, I think, is needed Well you coming out of retirement is a very huge mark in the pro column, for as we head into two thousand and twenty everyone, please go subscribe to campaign H. Do with David Pluff, it's fantastic podcast, and can we can we pre order the book? Yet You can pre order the book. Okay, as I think you mean tastic, we we sell books here at that's with aside company, I'm excited you know, and then, if it from that yeah, we haven't fleshed out the entire. You know twelve when it comes out, but I'm gonna go to all the battlegrounds, and you know not just out of a sense that you know do some workshops and I'm really looking forward to it. Well, it you that's a question. You get all the time when we go on the road for our shows. The number one question
Can I do what more can I do? I'm in a battleground state, I'm in a red state, I'm in a blue state. What more can I do to help you trump? So I think it's a great question that your answer, the book- everyone go preorder it David Pluff. Thank you for joining us thanks for having me, and we will see you all next week, actually Sunday night, we're doing a show in LAS Vegas as part of the life is beautiful. Opening for Post Malone way we're opening for Post Malone Sunday night S, o that show will be Monday's podcast and we'll also have an interview with Samantha Power, former Un Ambassador and our pal Samantha power will be that review on Mondays, podcast and then we'll have our and then we'll be on the road later next week. Also by Smith, powers buckets excellent, fantastic, yes, go by education of an idealist. Okay, we'll see you next week by everyone pod, save America is a product of cricket. Media senior producer is Michael Martinez, producer is Jordan Waller. Easton, edited by Andrew Chadwick. Kyle segment is our sound engineer, thing
to Caroline rested, Tanya, Selma, Nader and Katie Long production support into our digital team, Elijah Cone, normal cockney and yell freed in my lil Kim who film and upload these episodes as a video every week.
Transcript generated on 2019-09-21.