-Democrats screamed
over each other in a chaotic debate as President Trump tightens his authoritarian grip on power. For more on this,
it’s time “A Closer Look.” [ Suspenseful theme plays ]
[ Cheering and applause ] [ Whistling ] The 2020 election
will be a referendum on whether we wanna preserve
whatever’s left of our Democratic institutions or whether we wanna complete
the slide into authoritarianism we’ve seen under Donald Trump. And that slide is not only real, after Trump’s impeachment
acquittal, it’s accelerating. You can tell both from Trump’s
increased lawlessness and from the way he stands. I mean, look at him. [ Laughter ] He leans like he’s accelerating. He literally looks like
he’s sliding downhill on skis. [ Laughter and applause ] If you gave him a tiny push, he’d fall over
like a Jenga tower. [ Laughter ] The Trump White House
has literally been making lists of supposedly disloyal
government officials, purging them
from the administration, installing unqualified cronies
in high-profile positions, insisting he has the right
to interfere in criminal cases to protect his allies
and claiming that, not only is he
above the law, but that he, himself,
is the law. -I’m allowed to be
totally involved. I’m actually, I guess, the chief law enforcement
officer of the country. [ Laughter ]
-No! You’re not a law enforcement officer. First of all, you’d never pass
the background check. [ Laughter ]
Or the physical. [ Laughter ]
You don’t — [ Cheering and applause ]
You don’t even know — You don’t even know
the sound a gun makes. -Ah ah ah, bink! [ Laughter and applause ]
-Is that a gun or a duck’s mouth? [as Trump]
Beak! [ Laughter ] Also, Trump declaring himself the country’s chief
law enforcement officer makes clear that he desperately
wishes he was a cop, when, at best, he’s more like
that weird crossing guard who no one actually knows [ Laughter ]
and who doesn’t seem to be paying attention
to traffic. [as Trump]
Alright, kids, let’s go. Just make sure —
Dodge the cars. [ Laughter and applause ]
And, by the way, while he’s tightening his own
authoritarian grip on power, Trump is fresh
off a trip to India, where he cozied up to another
authoritarian nationalist, Narendra Modi, who’s rounded up
thousands of Muslims and passed a citizenship law
that discriminates against Islam and, rather than comment
on any of that, Trump said, in a press
conference before he left India, that he wanted
to avoid being controversial, so as not to ruin his trip. -I thought it was
a great two days. It was a fantastic two days. I’m gonna be not
at all controversial because I don’t wanna
blow the two days, plus two days of travel, [ Laughter ]
on one answer,
one little answer. So I’ll be very conservative
of my answers, if you don’t mind. -It’s so weird when Trump just
openly says what he’s doing. [ Laughter ]
He’s like a guy
on a date saying… [as Trump]
Normally, I’d be cheap, but, tonight,
I’m gonna pick up the tab so you’ll have sex with me. [ Laughter ] But, tomorrow,
breakfast is on you. [ Laughter ]
Trump, of course,
has a deep affinity for fellow authoritarians. He’s always trying to mimic them or impress them,
whether it’s Modi or Putin or the time he sat
in the Oval Office with Crown Prince
Mohammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia
and literally showed off a giant poster of all the
weapons he’d sold to them, like a sixth grader presenting [ Laughter and applause ]
a class project on the military. [as Trump]
Did you know the Army has
planes and tanks and boats? [ Laughter ] The Democrats are tryin’
to sort out who has the best chance
of defeating Trump and, thankfully, we got answers to that important question
last night, in a calm, well-organized
debate on CBS [ Laughter ]
with clear questions, in which everyone
took turns speaking and we all got to hear
their answers. -First of all — No.
-Bernie, let me go. Let me go.
-I think — Tom, I think she was talkin’
about my plan, not yours. [ Voices overlapping ] -The opposition
to the filibuster -Time out.
-is not a discretion from a long time ago.
-I think she recognized me. -Mayor Bloomberg, it is alleged you have said
-Never said that. to one of his —
-Oh come on. I wrote that law.
-That bill, along with — [ Applause ]
You didn’t write that bill. -I did write.
-I wrote that bill. -I wrote the bill. Let’s talk
[ Laughter ] about what it adds up to.
-Let’s talk about math. -Let’s talk
about math, indeed. Okay.
-Let’s talk about math. -So here’s the math.
-If we do nothing, -Things that you have —
-the truth is, Pete — -One at a time.
-The Americans — -Donald — Donald Trump
-Senator Klobuchar. -[Shouting]
Bernie. Bernie. Donald Trump —
-This has to stop. -Let me answer. -Reparations and I challenge —
-Thank you, Bill. Senator Klobuchar, question. -Records for that,
for this whole campaign.
-New topic. New topic, Senator. -Jesus!
[ Laughter and applause ] Does the C in CBS stand
for cluster[bleep]? [ Laughter and applause ] [ Cheering ]
That was — I mean — That was like watching
a family dinner if the special ingredient
in the mashed potatoes was cocaine. [ Laughter and applause ] I’ve seen more
polite conversations between New Yorkers
fighting over a cab. “Hey, I was here first!”
“Oh, yeah? Then why was my hand up?!” [ Laughter ] Now, with the stakes
for the 2020 election so high, the Democrat candidates
spent some time, in particular, fighting over their own
positions on foreign policy. Now, let’s be clear —
There’s no comparison to Trump on this topic
and any false equivalence between Trump and any Democrat
is absurd. I mean, Trump has taken
his praise for dictators to gross new levels,
emulating them and even bragging
that he and Kim Jong-un “fell in love”
over Kim’s beautiful letters, which he has bragged about
or shown off to reporters multiple times. Trump loves holding up
pieces of paper. [ Laughter ]
He’s like a high school senior running into the house with his
college acceptance letter. [as Trump]
Mom, look! I got
into Pyongyang University! [ Laughter ]
At least that’s what it says. I can’t read.
[ Laughter ] And, yet, even as Trump
has lavished praise on one authoritarian
nationalist after another, Republicans and Democrats
were attacking Bernie Sanders for comments in which
he praised, not Cuba, but Cuba’s literacy program. Now, as fact-checkers
have noticed, Sanders’ comments
about Cuba mirror those of President Barack Obama
in 2017, soon after he had moved to open diplomatic
relations with Cuba and, yet, when Bernie tried
to point that out in last night’s
Democratic debate, a few people in the crowd
tried to boo him, to Bernie’s surprise. -What I said
is what Barack Obama said, in terms of Cuba. That Cuba made progress
on education. Yes, I think —
[ Booing ] Really?!
-Yes! -Really?! [ Laughter ]
-Bernie Sounds like he just got cut in line
at the deli. [as Sanders]
[ Laughter and applause ] You’re gonna walk up? Let me see your ticket. That’s handwritten!
That’s handwritten! That’s not from this store! [ Laughter and applause ] Meanwhile, billionaire former
Republican Michael Bloomberg has actually praised
authoritarian leaders, like China’s Xi Jinping, who he
has said is not a dictator. And, last night, Bloomberg again
refused to call Xi a dictator, but, somehow, even worse
than his comments on a repressive dictator
was his bungling of multiple, lame,
prewritten jokes that he tried to shoehorn
into his answers. -Mayor Bloomberg,
as mayor of New York, you declared war on obesity. You banned trance fats
from restaurants and you tried to do the same
with large sugary drinks. So, if you become president, will you push those policies
on the national level as well? -Well, I think what’s right
for New York City isn’t necessarily right
-[Cough] for all the other cities,
otherwise, you’d have a Naked Cowboy in every city. [ Laughter ]
So, let’s get serious, here. Redlining is not the problem
with the mortgage market, but it was a problem for the
communities where it was done and we stopped that. Let me also say, just since I have
the floor for a second, that I really am surprised
that all of these — my fellow contestants
up here, I guess, would be the right word for it, [ Laughter ]
given nobody pays attention to the clock. I’m surprised they show up
because I would’ve thought, after I did such a good job
in beating them last week, that they’d be a little bit
afraid to do that. -[dully] Yeah.
[ Laughter ] Let me put this in terms
a New Yorker would understand. Mike Bloomberg went so far
out of his way to make that joke, he had
to take the FDR to the BQE, [ Laughter ]
accidentally ended up
on the LIE, and, now, his competitors
are all [laughing] on the FU. [ Laughter and applause ] Now, Mike Bloomberg
could just have easily stayed out of the race
and spent his money to help whichever Democrat
got the nomination or he coulda just offered Trump
himself the money to resign. You know Trump would take it. Trump has never, in his life, passed up an opportunity
to make money. If you asked him to sell
the presidency for $1 billion, he’d say yes and then quietly
peel the sticker off his desk that says, “For sale, $10.” [ Laughter ]
And, yet, Bloomberg decided, instead, to get
into the race himself because he cares more
about stopping progressives, like Elizabeth Warren
and Bernie Sanders. In fact, he basically
admitted as much himself in leaked audio from 2016,
in which CNN reported that he called Warren scary. Honestly, the way Warren has
destroyed him in the debates, he should be scared. [ Laughter ]
Last night, for example, she highlighted allegations
that Bloomberg harassed and discriminated
against pregnant women in his company,
including one incident in which he allegedly told
a pregnant employee, “Kill it.”
Now, Bloomberg denied making the remark, even though
The Washington Post reported that a former Bloomberg
employee said he witnessed the conversation
and then, after the debate, MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews
asked Warren if she thought Bloomberg
was lying and her straightforward answer
seemed to confuse Matthews. -Do you believe that
the former mayor of New York said that
to a pregnant employee? -Well, a pregnant employee
sure said that he did. Why shouldn’t I believe her? -You believe he’s lying. -I believe the woman. -You believe he’s lying.
-Which means he’s not telling the truth.
-And why would he lie? Because just to protect himself. -Yeah. And why would she lie? I mean, that’s
the question, Chris! [ Laughter ]
-Damn! Look at his face! [ Laughter and applause ]
He genuinely can’t understand. [as Matthews]
Why would he lie,
just to protect himself? Doesn’t make any sense!
Powerful men never do that! [ Laughter ]
Warren flipped the question
on him perfectly. As soon as she turned it
around on him, Matthews malfunctioned
like a robot who’d been asked
an unsolvable riddle. “Could God make a rock so big,
he could not lift it?” [as Matthews]
Error. Error! [ Laughter ] We’re watching
as our current president tightens his grip on power and cozies up to authoritarians
around the world. Meanwhile,
an ex-Republican billionaire is trying to buy his way
into the Democratic primary, because he’s scared
of progressives like Warren and Bernie. And, when Bloomberg insists he’s
the only one who can beat Trump, the rest of the field looks
at him and says… -Really?
-Yes! -Really?!
[ Laughter ] -This has been “A Closer Look.” ♪♪
[ Cheering and applause ]