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The McLaughlin Group

Issues: The Trump Rebellion; Give Me My Money; Washroom Wrangle; Pro-Life Parenthood

Participants:
John McLaughlin, Host
Pat Buchanan, Author and Columnist
Clarence Page, The Chicago Tribune
Eleanor Clift, The Daily Beast
Tom Rogan, National Review/Daily Telegraph

Taped: Friday, April 29, 2016
Broadcast: Weekend of April 29-May 2, 2016


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ANNOUNCER: From Washington, THE MCLAUGHLIN GROUP, the American original. For over three decades, the sharpest minds, best sources, hardest talk.

JOHN MCLAUGHLIN, HOST: Issue One: The Trump Rebellion.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: As we decided to allocate our time and energy and resources on the state of Indiana, Governor Kasich decided to allocate his resources elsewhere. I think that made sense for both campaigns.

MCLAUGHLIN (voice-over): To some, it’s the art of the deal. To others, it’s a backroom conspiracy.

But this week, the two candidates challenging Donald Trump for the Republican presidential nomination formed a de facto alliance, facing Donald Trump’s eastern sweep of five GOP primaries on Tuesday, Ted Cruz and John Kasich are now coordinating to prevent Mr. Trump from securing the GOP nomination before the party’s July convention.

Once at the convention, Mr. Cruz and Mr. Kasich hope to beat Mr. Trump if the first ballot is deadlocked. And so, Mr. Cruz has now ceased campaigning in Oregon and New Mexico. In turn, Mr. Kasich has seized campaigning in Indiana.

And note this: making new news on Wednesday, Ted Cruz announced Carly Fiorina would be his vice presidential running mate if he wins the GOP nomination.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MCLAUGHLIN: Is this good strategy or is it backroom racketeering? Pat Buchanan?

PAT BUCHANAN, AUTHOR & COLUMNIST: I think it’s desperation pass, John. But, look, this non-aggression pact between Cruz and Kasich -- one campaign’s in Indiana, the other goes to New Mexico and Oregon -- collapsed within hours of its being negotiated where Kasich said, "I want my people in Indiana to vote for me."

Also, the Carly Fiorina thing, I understand why Cruz is doing it. He needs something to ignite his campaign and change the subject after those five-state losses.

I think what’s going to happen, John, though, is Indiana -- Trump as of late in the week was surging and doing better and better and better. And I think what’s going to happen is that Trump is going to win Indiana. I think Kasich then will see the writing on the wall and will drop out of the race. But because Cruz has Carly Fiorina, who did win a California primary with him, he’s going to wait and go through to the California primary.

But, John, this thing is just about over. The train is leaving the station.

MCLAUGHLIN: Clarence Page?

CLARENCE PAGE, CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Well, I think this is a -- well, a move of desperation that was also designed to get Ted Cruz some airtime that would begin to compete with that Donald Trump gets virtually every day routinely. In this case, his introduction of Carly Fiorina was like, about a half hour long.

ELEANOR CLIFT, THE DAILY BEAST: Right.

PAGE: I recall it was like more of a rally for Ted Cruz than it was an introduction for Carly Fiorina. But this is kind of where Ted Cruz is right now. He’s looking at hopefully a third or fourth or a fifth ballot whenever, in order to try to have some slim chance of getting -- of being able to negotiate a nomination. It’s not likely to happen.

CLIFT: I think the real story is the Republican Party coming to terms with Donald Trump as now the most likely nominee, and maybe they’re going to discover characteristics of him that they didn’t realize how much they loved him.

(LAUGHTER)

CLIFT: I think that’s beginning. That non-aggression pact was basically a way for the super PACs to signal each other that one would be spending money here and not in the other. I mean, it was kind of a phony move.

And Carly Fiorina is about as disliked as Ted Cruz. I mean, it’s like doubling down on his worse characteristics.

TOM ROGAN, NATIONAL REVIEW/OPPORTUNITY LIVES: But I think Carly Fiorina has a popularity with more establishment conservatives that Ted Cruz does struggle with. Ted Cruz has been resorted to by establishment conservatives, which I would say is the majority of Republicans incidentally, and conservatives, because of the fact that, you know, he is not popular, but Donald Trump is even more unpopular.

But now, that’s shifting to some degree because people are thinking about the electorability of Donald Trump.

I have to say, though, I think that when we get to the convention, it’s going to be very interesting. I think Democrats understandably are loving this because the Republican Party, people talk about the precipice -- I think the Republican Party is, my latest column, has actually collapsed already.

I just think those divorces --

MCLAUGHLIN: Hold on, Pat. I want to ask you a question.

BUCHANAN: Go ahead.

MCLAUGHLIN: It relates to the federal, the FEC -- Federal Election Committee.

BUCHANAN: Right.

MCLAUGHLIN: Is this deal violative of FEC prohibitions against coordinating spending between PACs and campaigns?

BUCHANAN: No, it’s not, unless the super PACs got together and conspired.

CLIFT: Yes.

BUCHANAN: But let me say this -- look, how does -- there is no case for Cruz or Kasich. They go to the convention and Trump can say, I won by 4 million more votes than you guys, I’ve got 400 more delegates than you, I’ve got the biggest crowd. I’ve won more victories.

And what does Cruz say? I want the nomination and deserve it. Why?

CLIFT: Well --

ROGAN: The case is that Trump doesn’t have that majority of Republicans --

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN: But what does Cruz have to say to claim the nomination?

ROGAN: That he can unify those disenfranchised people.

BUCHANAN: He can unify those people?

(LAUGHTER)

ROGAN: Well, that’s his argument.

PAGE: That’s his argument.

BUCHANAN: That’s what he hasn’t done!

PAGE: Yes, that’s his argument, though. But I agree with you, though, that he hasn’t gotten much of a chance with it.

CLIFT: Yes, all -- if they could have kept Trump from getting -- if they could have kept him to 1,100 delegates instead of -- I think maybe then they wouldn’t have had a case, because his negatives are up in the 60s. He does look by all conventional terms unelectable, and party is anxious about it. But Cruz is no more electable than Donald Trump. So --

BUCHANAN: He only has 10 percent in the eastern states. He’s being wiped out.

PAGE: Yes.

MCLAUGHLIN: Question: Did Donald Trump’s foreign policy address demonstrate gravitas?

BUCHANAN: I wrote on that, John. I wrote a column on his foreign policy address. There is --

MCLAUGHLIN: Hold on, Pat. From the setting, to the teleprompter, to the substance, the speech conveyed gravitas. Trump declared an "America First" foreign policy that eschews -- that eschews, Pat eschews.

(LAUGHTER)

MCLAUGHLIN: You want help in that word? Eschews nation-building adventurism.

CLIFT: Right.

BUCHANAN: But also eschews, John --

(LAUGHTER)

BUCHANAN: -- using American power as an armed doctrine to change the world.

Inside the Trump speech, there’s a lot of the people criticized that got this in there, he’s after Iran. Inside it, you can extract from it a very realistic foreign policy of non-interventionist foreign policy, a policy of talking to the Russians, talking to the Chinese, and other aspects which are very much in the tradition of Eisenhower and Nixon and Reagan.

Now, not all of it. There are parts of it --

(CROSSTALK)

CLIFT: The phrase itself --

BUCHANAN: No, but you can draw out of there, I got it.

PAGE: You can draw anything out of that speech, I’ll tell you.

CLIFT: Yes. The phrase itself "America First" has a rather complicated history in this, and maybe you consider yourself an "America Firster.” But it goes --

BUCHANAN: That was a phrase we used in ’92.

CLIFT: Well, it’s a phrase that was used in ’39 and ’40, to try to keep us out of World War II, with Charles Lindbergh, and that’s not a very --

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN: And John F. Kennedy and Joe Kennedy backed up it and Potter Stewart backed America First.

CLIFT: That doesn’t mean it was right. That doesn’t mean it was right.

BUCHANAN: -- Herbert Hoover -- they might have been wrong, but they shouldn’t be demonized.

CLIFT: It was wrong.

PAGE: You know what the funny thing is? I don’t think Donald Trump knows the history of America First. You know, until he tells me, I’m going to presume that he does not know that history, because, frankly, most baby boomers don’t know it. And this --

CLIFT: Maybe it’s a dog-whistle to Pat. A secret "America First,” maybe not so secret.

MCLAUGHLIN: Exit question.

BUCHANAN: It’s a good race.

MCLAUGHLIN: Be brief.

Will next week’s Indiana primary be Ted Cruz’s Alamo? Yes or no?

BUCHANAN: I think he’s going to run second. He’s going to get beat, but I think he’s going to go on to California, is my guess.

CLIFT: It will be Alamo I, and California will be Alamo II.

ROGAN: Yes.

CLIFT: He’s going to make a couple of last, last stands.

ROGAN: Davy Crockett will live to fight another day in this case.

CLIFT: That’s right.

PAGE: Yes, California is also known as the last nail in the coffin is probably what’s going to happen then.

CLIFT: Right.

MCLAUGHLIN: Yes. Cruz is making his last stand.

Issue Two: Give Me My Money.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PROTESTER: What do we want?!

MCLAUGHLIN (voice-over): Minimum wage and living wage laws are the top priority of many liberal legislatures across the nation. But according to an "Associated Press" report this week, worker access to those wages is regularly restricted. Notably, in states like Oregon, California and New York, many workers complained that their employers refused to pay the minimum wages. Accordingly, they say, low-wage workers are losing out on millions of dollars of earnings.

So, in response, labor advocacy groups are calling on state and federal governments to impose higher penalties on employers who do not pay their employees the minimum set wage.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MCLAUGHLIN: Question: What should be done to enforce minimum wage laws?

Let’s try this again on you, Buchanan. See if you can --

BUCHANAN: It’s the same old process. They passed an increase on minimum wage, and then let’s hire some bureaucrats who are going to make a lot more than the minimum wage and get great jobs to enforce it.

Look, minimum wage, John -- they do several things. In one case, they do raise wages of people at the lowest level if you go from $7.50 to $10 to $15.

They do a second thing. They really hammer small business who got a lot of low-wage workers. They lay some off, or some of them go out of business. Some of them don’t do any new hiring. That’s the economic impact conservative versus liberal. And I agree that it ought to be done at the state level. It ought to be done at the municipal level. And if it works in one place, OK there, and the federal government ought to do the right thing, keep a very, very low national minimum wage.

CLIFT: Well, I think this wasn’t supposed to be an issue about debating over the minimum wage, but about employers who don’t do it and how you hold them accountable. And I don’t know that necessarily means hiring more bureaucrats. But it means people who are being taken advantage of should be able to have the ability to step forward. And that doesn’t happen because you have people -- probably they might be undocumented.

So, I mean, I think this is part of our economy that there’s still a lot that’s going on.

BUCHANAN: Do you hire illegal (ph) people?

CLIFT: No, I think you continue trying to boost the minimum wage and you continue trying to publicize employers if they’re not paying it. But that means workers have to have the courage to step forward. And I’m saying it’s still very difficult in this economy.

ROGAN: I think the difficulty here as you see is the left’s focus on the legal regulatory framework, the idea that somehow with businesses, all you have to do is just enforce, just enforce it. The problem, though, with minimum wage is, the problem why these employers are not providing is that because that marginal cost of labor increasing, it make their productive potential -- it destroys it. There’s no point of hiring those people.

The enforcement --

PAGE: And so they say.

ROGAN: Well, let’s see. I think two or three --

(CROSSTALK)

PAGE: What is the cost of (INAUDIBLE) going down while inflation is going up?

ROGAN: Let’s see what happens in the next two or three years, and we’ll have that debate again. But I really do believe -- and maybe I’m wrong. I hope I am wrong, actually.

But the problem is that you enforce those laws, you will simply push business out and --

(CROSSTALK)

PAGE: There’s always been a legal minimum wage, and a real minimum wage.

BUCHANAN: Right.

PAGE: The real minimum wage goes up and down with the economy.

ROGAN: Right.

PAGE: But the fact is --

ROGAN: The market.

PAGE: -- Americans nationwide had not gotten an increase since, what, around 1980?


(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN: Clarence, let’s see what happens if it goes -- it’s going to go to $15 in some communities, out here in the Northwest. Yes, let’s see what happens.

PAGE: Right.

CLIFT: Actually, this is an argument for unions. I mean, this is why you need to have unions in there because they protect the workers, and unions have lost so much strength in recent years –

(CROSSTALK)

CLIFT: -- because corporations, with the benefit in the Supreme Court have involved --

PAGE: In fact, it’s unions that are pushing these minimum wages increases around the country --

BUCHANAN: But in Wisconsin, even government workers voted to break up the union or get out of the unions. Unions are not popular.

PAGE: It depends on the state. But yes, I mean, everybody loves the benefits of the unions --

CLIFT: Corporations aren’t popular either, Pat.

(LAUGHTER)

ROGAN: But again, I just think you look at Texas to California. The exodus of wealth, it’s going to continue. Liberals are going to have to reap the whirlwind on this. I think -- maybe I’m wrong.

(CROSSTALK)

ROGAN: But I will say, but also, one fundamental problem with the minimum wage as well is that low skill, the youngest and low skilled find it hard to access the marketplace. They are learned skills.

BUCHANAN: We had a minimum wage for teenage -- the teenage wage, so that they could come in other than the minimum because it’s more important that they learn how to work that it is how much they’re getting paid. It’s a good idea.

CLIFT: It’s fine.

ROGAN: It is a virtue, but the problem is, today’s economy, we’re finding more and more single moms in particular having to raise kids on the minimum wage. That’s not a teenage wage we’re talking about.

CLIFT: We’re not talking about teenage children of prosperous parents who are just learning work skills.

MCLAUGHLIN: True or false? True or false? The federal government through the Labor Department or another entity should enforce state and local minimum wage laws?

BUCHANAN: They should enforce the federal law and let the states enforce the state law.

CLIFT: Well, I --

MCLAUGHLIN: It’s not a federal responsibility?

BUCHANAN: Well, if it’s a federal law, you got -- but they really ought to get a breakdown, say, if it’s got 50 employees or more of the federal government handles it, less the state governments, something --

(CROSSTALK)

CLIFT: I think they probably have those rules.

PAGE: Yes, the worst it gets, the more people are going to vote on this issue. That’s why, now, we’re talking about in some states and municipalities are raising the minimum wage now, not waiting for the federal government because people on the lower brackets are just falling farther and farther behind.

ROGAN: Create opportunity, that’s the case.

CLIFT: Maybe this is something Bernie Sanders can --

MCLAUGHLIN: Issue three --

(CROSSTALK)

CLIFT: Right, exactly.

MCLAUGHLIN: Issue Three: Washroom Wrangle.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Repeal this bill now!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We think they’re new on the block, and we want to reestablish and reinstate what our history says is right.

MCLAUGHLIN (voice-over): North Carolina government Pat McCrory is trying to prevent transgender individuals from using restrooms of their choice.

(CHANTING)

MCLAUGHLIN: But in doing so, he has sparked outrage at home and abroad.

The British government has issued a travel warning to Britons considering visiting North Carolina and Mississippi. And many celebrities, corporations and politicians are now boycotting the state. Estimates say that these boycotts have already cost North Carolina tens of millions of dollars in lost revenue.

And note another Southern showdown, First Lady Michelle Obama is leading a new wave of criticism against Southern state voter ID laws that she argues will disenfranchise many minorities.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MCLAUGHLIN: Question: What’s going on, Tom Rogan?

ROGAN: Well, I think what you see here is that the left are trying to weaponize this issue because it has, you know, potency in terms of trying to persuade millennials that the conservatives are being extreme. Some conservatives are being extreme. Some conservative are -- you know, look, someone of transgender doesn’t affect us.

But the reason I think conservatives are right to some degree in saying that transgender people should use either the bathroom of their post-operative sex or the bathroom of their birth sex and not somewhere in between --

MCLAUGHLIN: Yes, what’s your view on that?

ROGAN: -- it’s not the issue posed by transgender people. It’s the issue posed by other people who I do believe will manipulate that situation to invade people’s privacy and to degrade that --

(CROSSTALK)

PAGE: Which tend to be conservatives, by the way.

CLIFT: Right.

PAGE: I don’t know where you get the idea the leftists are trying to weaponize this.

CLIFT: That’s ridiculous.

PAGE: But the left is already winning on this issue.

ROGAN: But what is the difficulty in saying that it should be post-op or birth sex?

CLIFT: No, I’m with Donald Trump. No, I’m with Donald Trump. Let’s just do what we’ve always been doing. This is not a problem. This is a phony solution in search of a problem. It’s just like the voter fraud. There’s no voter fraud, and they’re passing all these laws to exclude people.

And this is -- frankly, this is about discrimination.

PAGE: And we quote Eleanor’s with Donald Trump. Let’s quote that now.

CLIFT: I am with Trump on that issue.

BUCHANAN: John, this is a state issue, and I think it’s very much a local issue, and I do believe that you don’t want men, grown men going into girl’s bathrooms. You don’t want men and women showers or locker rooms.

CLIFT: That’s not happening.

BUCHANAN: And that’s the tradition.

CLIFT: It’s not happening.

BUCHANAN: They ought to write it locally into law.

PAGE: That is already happening.

BUCHANAN: If you say it doesn’t happen, I will agree with you. But if it’s not happening, it’s not happening.

PAGE: Actually, it’s already happening, Pat. I mean, transgender people are using bathroom of their choice right now. It is political people finding, ah -- this is kind of Willie Horton, this is a great issue to hold up in order to get people alarmed and excited over something that is not a danger.

ROGAN: I think McCrory is wrong when he says that you should still have to use the bathroom of your birth sex, OK? If you’re post-operative to use that bathroom --

(CROSSTALK)

CLIFT: How is he going to be enforcing this?

ROGAN: But wait, wait, wait, here’s the thing -- but the law is blind essentially when it comes to the application of this, the practicality, and that means -- I don’t think I should be able to go into a woman’s bathroom, OK? I don’t think that.

And the problem is, and I don’t think transgender people --

(CROSSTALK)

CLIFT: The law isn’t addressing that. They’re not part of this issue, as much as you’d like to be.

(CROSSTALK)

BUCHANAN: Just as we should have to stay out of the Brexit argument, your prime minister over there should stay out North Carolina.

ROGAN: I’m American, and I keep reminding you!

(LAUGHTER)

CLIFT: This is --

PAGE: Get out of my bathroom, that’s the issue.

CLIFT: Businesses like Target are leading the way actually, and they’re basically saying you use the restroom that you identify with.

(CROSSTALK)

ROGAN: But if they have a man going in there yesterday to test it. And so --

PAGE: Yes, to test it, right. It’s a publicity stunt, you know? This is how crazy we get over this stuff.

ROGAN: The problem is not transgender people. The problem is the people who are going to take advantage of it.

(CROSSTALK)

MCLAUGHLIN: All righty.

PAGE: We had a reporter who switched sexes back in the ‘70s. And I mean, you know, he or she would going to the restroom of her choice, and it was not an issue because of privacy.

ROGAN: She’s woman now.

PAGE: Yes, right.

ROGAN: Well, that’s fine!

BUCHANAN: You’re going to have a bad incident occur with some kid, and that will explode this issue and it will go against liberalism.

CLIFT: Yes.

PAGE: I’m waiting for it to happen.

CLIFT: Yes, yes --

(CROSSTALK)

PAGE: If this was going to happen, it would have happened already.

CLIFT: If any of these bad incidents with kids occurred over the last decades in your memory that even prompted this law?

BUCHANAN: How do you know?

(CROSSTALK)

MCLAUGHLIN: Excuse me. Excuse me. How many transgendered people are there in the U.S.?

BUCHANAN: Seven hundred thousand.

MCLAUGHLIN: This will shock you: 700,000, widely stated.

PAGE: Well done!

MCLAUGHLIN: That is based on only surveys and --

BUCHANAN: See? Because I’m doing my research.

PAGE: Well done.

(LAUGHTER)

MCLAUGHLIN: Please, I’m reading!

BUCHANAN: I said, 700,000.

MCLAUGHLIN: How boorish.

(LAUGHTER)

MCLAUGHLIN: That’s based on -- only on surveys in Massachusetts, with 0.5 percent said they were transgendered, and California with 0.1 percent. The Census Bureau hasn’t counted.

PAGE: But the point is that young people, if you go to college campuses, they see this as the next frontier in civil rights. I mean, there’s a lot activism around this issue, and I think appropriately so.

MCLAUGHLIN: Should all bathrooms be unisex, yes or no?

BUCHANAN: No, it will cost a trillion dollars.

CLIFT: They are on airplanes.

(LAUGHTER)

PAGE: Yes, that’s right!

ROGAN: But they’re single occupancy, no.

PAGE: In some restaurants, they are already. But it’s not like this is something --

CLIFT: We may be heading in that direction.

MCLAUGHLIN: Close the door, single user? Close the door, single user, yes or no?

ROGAN: That’s fine, but I don’t think they should be unisex public bathrooms.

MCLAUGHLIN: Yes or no?

PAGE: You mean, should we have -- all be unisex?

MCLAUGHLIN: You hear the question.

PAGE: Well, I think it’s up to the people who own the establishment, if they want to be unisex or not. As simple as that.

ROGAN: Well, private – yes. State level.

PAGE: Yes.

MCLAUGHLIN: The answer is yes.

PAGE: OK.

(LAUGHTER)

MCLAUGHLIN: Issue Four: Pro-Life Parenthood.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MCLAUGHLIN (voice-over): Antiabortion health centers in Georgia will be eligible to receive millions of dollars in state funds. Signing legislation to that effect this week, Governor Nathan Deal gave provisional approval for a $2 million allocation. And while Governor Deal may still act to alter that allocation, not everyone is happy.

Lamenting the decision, the pro-choice Guttmacher Institute told "The Associated Press" that Georgia and 10 other states with similar programs, quote, "provide women with incomplete information or outright misinformation," end quote.

But others say this legislation simply creates a level playing field between pro-life organizations and abortion providers or pro-choice like Parenthood. And note this, Donald Trump says he wants to change the Republican Party’s platform on abortion. Mr. Trump believes it should include exemptions for women whose lives are endangered by pregnancy or have become pregnant by a rape or incest.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MCLAUGHLIN: Question: Is the GOP confused? Eleanor Clift?

CLIFT: I think the last thing that Donald Trump wants is a floor fight in Cleveland about anything and especially about abortion rights. He did go with his instincts, which are that exceptions for rape and incest should be included, but I haven’t heard him mention it since then. I think he’s got some other issues on his mind. But -- so I doubt we’re going to see him push that.

BUCHANAN: I think Eleanor is right on that, John. I don’t think they’ll start a huge battle over that. It’s been embedded in the platform since Reagan days.

As for the -- I don’t even know why the Georgia thing is a controversy, John. The state has a perfect right to provide facilities to aid women, especially poor women who want to bring their children to term and to help them out, and they’ve got a right to say we don’t do -- we’re not doing abortions with these state funds. I don’t know what the controversy is.

PAGE: I think they’ve got to show that somebody is being denied access. That would come into conflict with the Roe v. Wade. And in some anecdotal cases, that has happened where people have been seeking an abortion and not been able to get it because they’ve been steered over toward --

BUCHANAN: But can you require someone to give people an abortion who don’t believe in it?

ROGAN: No.

PAGE: I don’t think that’s what’s been required. It’s mainly information.

CLIFT: It’s denying information.

PAGE: Yes.

ROGAN: I think this is a fight that Guttmacher Institute should not have picked. Look, we -- there’s the big debate about federal funding obviously to Planned Parenthood. But the idea that somehow it’s inappropriate funds to women’s health centers that are doing good work, that are for those reasons providing abortions -- it’s not a restriction on abortion rights. It’s simply provision into different mediums.

PAGE: No, these are also (ph) providing -- providing abortion services?

ROGAN: No, no, no. So, where the money is going to these particular places in Georgia --

BUCHANAN: No, they’re not.

ROGAN: -- they’re providing women’s health services, short of abortion.

PAGE: Short of, right.

ROGAN: And I don’t -- there’s not a problem with that. I think that’s --

PAGE: Planned Parenthood provides all those --

(CROSSTALK)

CLIFT: Agree. Agree. No, I don’t have a problem with them doing that. I do have a problem when they try to cut funding to Planned Parenthood, which provides a lot of health services and a very small number of abortions.

But Georgia, to its credit, looked into that whole phony scandal about Planned Parenthood selling fetal tissue, and they found there was no issue. So, they are not blocking Planned Parenthood funding.

BUCHANAN: I think they would dump on Planned Parenthood in the platform however, Eleanor.

ROGAN: Yes.

CLIFT: Well, yes.

(CROSSTALK)

CLIFT: Let them dump as much as they want. It’s toothless.

ROGAN: But I do think it was very interesting --

MCLAUGHLIN: Tom, let me clear this up, all right? Let me explain what’s going on.

PAGE: Please.

MCLAUGHLIN: Trump’s plan to rewrite the platform is (ph) inspired. Now, why is it inspired?

PAGE: It’s inspired because he had to come up with something. I mean, he changes his position four or five times.

CLIFT: Well, if he wants to run, he wants to run across a broad electorate, and the majority of Americans believe there should be exceptions for rape and incest. So, he’d like to move towards a general election posture. So, it’s inspired in that sense. But I kind of doubt that he’s going to put all his chips on the table in Cleveland fighting for this one.

MCLAUGHLIN: He had botched some earlier answers on this on. So --

PAGE: That’s right.

ROGAN: He’s botched a few ones --

MCLAUGHLIN: And he wants to correct the record as the way he’s doing it.

BUCHANAN: I think there’s an effort to take that out of the platform or to alter that way, you would have a walkout at the convention.

ROGAN: Priebus has said it’s going to be in there.

BUCHANAN: Do you really want that? I don’t think so.

ROGAN: There’s no way. It’s true.

BUCHANAN: And I think, look, I think The Donald is a better politician than Eleanor believes.

(LAUGHTER)

PAGE: Yes, he wasn’t smart enough to think of a position before he declared for president. But --

BUCHANAN: He’s doing OK right now.

(CROSSTALK)

ROGAN: Exactly! Let’s see how it long it lasts.

PAGE: But he finally came out with a belief. But I agree, he doesn’t have firm enough beliefs to want to fight this out at the convention floor. Why would he do that?

CLIFT: Right. I think I said that. Yes, right.

PAGE: You did. Yes, you’re right.

CLIFT: So I understand his politics on this one.

MCLAUGHLIN: Forced (ph) prediction: Bernie Sanders will stay in the Democratic race until the California primary. Yes or no? Pat?

BUCHANAN: He’s not only going to stay there, he’ll stay through New Jersey, and he’s going to go to the convention. And he will demand a primetime speaking slot, and he will get it.

CLIFT: Yes, he’ll stay in, and he deserves a primetime speaking spot. But what else he gets, I’m not sure.

ROGAN: Yes, he’ll stay in, but those tensions between Hillary and Bernie are growing, and that’s a problem for her campaign.

PAGE: Yes, Bernie will stay in until California, and he’ll get that speaking slot at the convention.

MCLAUGHLIN: The answer is yes. Bernie Sanders will stay in.

Bye-bye!

END