"FACE THE NATION" FULL TRANSCRIPT
JUNE 5, 2016
***FULL TRANSCRIPT BELOW ***
JOHN DICKERSON, HOST: Today on FACE THE NATION: Donald Trump gives no ground, as we go one on one. And we will look back at the life of the greatest, Muhammad Ali.
As she closes in on Democratic nomination, Hillary Clinton changes course and launches a withering round of attacks against Donald Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is not just another outlandish, insulting comment from Donald Trump. And it is not normal politics. This is something much, much more dangerous.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DICKERSON: We sat down with the presumptive Republican nominee in California ahead of Tuesday`s primary and asked him about the growing controversy over Trump University and the judge presiding over the case against him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DICKERSON: How does -- his Mexican parents have to do with him not...
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: He`s member of a club or society very strongly pro-Mexican, which is all fine. But I say he`s got bias. I want to build a wall. I`m going to build a wall.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DICKERSON: We will have plenty of analysis on all the political news.
Plus, we will talk about the legacy of Muhammad Ali, who died Friday at the age of 74.
It`s all coming up on FACE THE NATION.
Good morning, and welcome FACE THE NATION. I`m John Dickerson.
Less than a month ago, we traveled to California to sit down with Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton and asked her about her strategy in the fall campaign.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: I am going to run a race based on issues and what my agenda is for the American people. I don`t really feel like I`m running against Donald Trump.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DICKERSON: Just to underscore how quickly this campaign is changing, she reversed course against Trump late last week.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: Donald Trump`s ideas aren`t just different. They are dangerously incoherent.
CLINTON: He is not just unprepared. He is temperamentally unfit to hold an office that requires knowledge, stability and immense responsibility.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
DICKERSON: We sat down with Mr. Trump at his home in Beverly Hills on Friday. And that`s where our interview began.
DICKERSON: Mr. Trump, on Thursday, Hillary Clinton gave a speech very tough on you, said that you wanted to bring back water-boarding, go after the families of terrorist, allow Saudi Arabia to have a nuclear weapons. She says you have said that you know more about ISIS than the generals.
But what policy of yours did she mischaracterize?
TRUMP: Number one, it was a whole -- written out by professionals and just shot after shot. It was supposed to be foreign policy, and it was really Trump policy. And she got it all wrong.
First of all, she talked about that I want to nuke all of these countries. It is ridiculous. No, I want these countries to pay for protection. We are protecting them. We have $19 trillion in debt, very soon going to $21 trillion, John, in debt. And I want these countries to reimburse us at least for our costs.
She made many statements that she knows were wrong.
DICKERSON: Do you still feel like you know more about ISIS than the generals?
TRUMP: Well, they don`t know much, because they`re not winning. That, I can tell you.
Now, I think they`re not winning for a different reason. I think Obama is hurting them.
DICKERSON: How so?
TRUMP: It`s being run -- well, from what I hear, it`s being run from the White House. It`s all being run from the White House.
I have spoken to certain generals. I will keep it quiet as to who, but highly respected people. They say we could knock them out fast.
DICKERSON: In office now generals or retired generals?
TRUMP: In one case, in office, and, in one case, out of office.
And they said -- both of them said the same thing. If we had the leadership, meaning the go-ahead, you could knock them out fast. For some reason, Obama is not doing that.
DICKERSON: Let me ask you about Libya. You have been highly critical of Libya and Hillary Clinton. You were also for military action to oust Gadhafi and military action to take care of the humanitarian situation in Libya. You supported that.
TRUMP: When you say supported it, I supported Libya?
DICKERSON: Yes, you supported the intervention in Libya.
TRUMP: I did? Where do you see that?
DICKERSON: In a video blog from 2011, you said:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Now, we should go in. We should stop this guy, which would be very easy and very quick. We could do it surgically, stop him from doing it and save these lives.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: That`s a big difference from what we`re talking about.
DICKERSON: But you were for intervention.
TRUMP: Again, I`m the only one. I made lot of money with Gadhafi. If you remember, he came to the country and he had to make a deal with me because he needed a place to stay, and he paid me a fortune, never got to stay there. And it became sort of a big joke.
But the fact is that Libya was a disaster from the standpoint of the way it was handled.
DICKERSON: But you were for intervention, just to clear that up?
TRUMP: I was for doing something, but I wasn`t for what you have right now.
And right now, ISIS has their oil, John. ISIS is selling -- that is among the finest oil in the world. ISIS has taken over the Libyan oil. And we don`t do blockades. We don`t do anything. They`re selling it. They`re making a fortune with it.
So, we go out, we do Libya, we do it poorly, as poorly as you can do it. You can`t do worse. And then now, if you look at what`s happened, the end result is, ISIS selling the oil and it`s a total mess.
DICKERSON: This is one of the things that confuses some people about your positions. You said you weren`t for intervention, but you were for intervention in Libya.
TRUMP: I didn`t mind surgical. And I said surgical. You do a surgical shot and you take them out.
But I wasn`t for what happened. Look at the way it`s -- look at -- with Benghazi and with all of the problems that you have had. It was handled horribly.
DICKERSON: But you said you were never for intervention.
TRUMP: I was never for a strong intervention. I could have seen surgical, where you take out Gadhafi and his group.
DICKERSON: You said Hillary Clinton should go to jail. If the FBI, which is investigating, if there`s no indictment, will your attorney general go after her?
So, I have spoken to, and I have watched and I have read many, many lawyers on the subject, so-called neutral lawyers, OK, not even on one side or the other, neutral lawyers. Everyone of them, without a doubt, said that what she did is far worse than what other people did, like General Petraeus, who essentially got a two-year jail term.
General Petraeus and others have been treated -- their lives have been in a sense destroyed. She keeps campaigning. What she did is a criminal situation. She wasn`t supposed to do that with the server and the e-mails all of the other.
Now, I rely on the lawyers. These are good lawyers. These are professional lawyers. These are lawyers that know what they`re talking about and know -- are very well-versed on what they did. They say she`s guilty as hell.
DICKERSON: But it sounds like you were making promise for your attorney general that, if you were elected, this is one of the things -- this is a commitment you were making.
TRUMP: That`s true, yes.
DICKERSON: It`s a commitment to have your attorney general...
TRUMP: Certainly have my -- very fair, but I would have my attorney general look at it.
DICKERSON: Even if the investigation...
TRUMP: You know you have a five and maybe even a six-year statute of limitation.
DICKERSON: But even if the current investigations don`t find anything, you would have your attorney general go back at it?
TRUMP: Yes, I would, because everyone knows that she`s guilty.
Now, I would say this. She`s guilty. But I would let my attorney general make that determination. Maybe they would disagree. And I would let that person make the determination.
DICKERSON: And what for you exactly is she guilty of?
TRUMP: She`s guilty of the servers. She`s guilty of -- you look at confidential information, I mean, all of the information that probably has gotten out all over the world.
And then you know what she`s also guilty of? Stupidity and bad judgment.
DICKERSON: But that`s not a -- if that were criminal, we would all be in jail.
TRUMP: No, no, I`m not even saying that part is criminal. But she`s certainly guilty of that.
In terms of this country, she is guilty of having just bad, bad -- how could she do a thing like this?
DICKERSON: But what do you get -- what gets them to jail, though? This is -- what`s the difference here between rhetoric and law?
TRUMP: What the lawyers are saying is what she did in terms of national security, we have very strict rules and regulations -- she`s broken all of them.
DICKERSON: So, the classification issue?
TRUMP: She`s broken all of them. Of course it is. But she`s broken so much.
But she`s so -- if you look at this from the standpoint of why did she do it, judgment, the word judgment. This is not criminal judgment. You make bad judgment, although, actually, under those rules and regulations, judgment is even criminal. You`re not supposed to do it. If you make a mistake, they don`t take that into account.
Why would a person and how can a person with this kind of judgment become the president of the United States? Now, think of this. We`re in a cyber-world. It`s a cyber-world. This is a very complex -- we`re in world like we have never been in before.
If we are in a cyber-world and she can`t even handle her e-mails, how can she be president? And we`re being hacked all over the place by Russia, by China probably. I mean, to the best of everyone`s knowledge, it seems to be.
But listen to this. So, we`re in a cyber-world, and she`s playing around with servers and e-mails. How can she be running this country? She doesn`t know what she`s doing.
DICKERSON: I want to make -- move on to another development this week.
Paul Ryan has now come out and endorsed you. You have talked to him several times.
DICKERSON: Which of his ideas, the famous Ryan ideas, is -- are most appealing to you?
TRUMP: He`s most appealing. He`s a good man. He wants good things for the country.
We will agree on many things. We`re not going to agree on all things. But we`re going to agree on many things.
DICKERSON: For instance?
TRUMP: But Paul -- Paul Ryan -- well, I think we will agree on -- as an example, he really focuses on poverty. He wants to take people out of poverty. So do I. And we`re going to come up with a plan.
DICKERSON: Why do you think people are poor, by the way?
TRUMP: They`re poor because they don`t have jobs. They`re poor in many cases because they don`t have jobs.
And I will tell you will bring jobs back to this country like nobody has ever seen before. And people like Carrier and Ford and Nabisco leaving Chicago and moving to Mexico, they`re all moving to Mexico. I will stop that very quickly.
DICKERSON: Do you see yourself as implementing Paul Ryan`s agenda as president, or is Paul Ryan implementing the Donald Trump agenda?
TRUMP: I think it`s going to be a compromise, honestly. I can see a compromise. DICKERSON: Because, on issues of trade, entitlements, you and he -- immigration -- so, trade, entitlements, immigration, those are no small issues. You are on exactly the opposite end of the -- those aren`t differences. You are on the opposite end of the...
TRUMP: Well, I don`t know. To be honest, we have spoken about it very briefly. They are big subjects.
You know what my deal is on trade? I want good deals. That`s what I`m going to do. Somebody said, what is your position on trade? I said, I want good deals. Whether it`s free trade, not free trade, I don`t care what kind of trade it is. I want good deals for our country.
We don`t make good deals. We have a trade deficit with China that is through the roof. We have a trade deficit with Mexico. We have a trade deficit with Japan. We make bad deals, whether it`s the military, whether it`s trade. We only make bad deals.
DICKERSON: Let me ask you about Mitch McConnell on the Senate side.
He was asked by CNN two things, one about deporting the 11 million undocumented immigrants, which the president, by the way, called a fantasy. He said, if you asked him to do that, he would say, no, don`t do it. He also said about the temporary ban on Muslim integration, no, don`t do it.
These are two big promises.
DICKERSON: You got millions of votes based on these promises. How are you going to get past the establishment to keep those promises?
TRUMP: You are going to have to watch and are going to have to see.
I have done a lot of things that nobody thought I could do.
DICKERSON: But you`re not backing down on those promises, based on a no from the Senate?
TRUMP: No, I`m not backing down. We have to do something.
We have a problem in this country. We have a radical Islamic terrorism problem in this country, and, by the way, throughout the world, throughout the world. It`s a problem. And it`s a temporary ban. I`m not talking permanent. It`s a temporary ban. We have to find out what is going on.
DICKERSON: Let me ask you about, what does the Mexican heritage of the judge in the Trump University case have to do with anything?
TRUMP: I think it has a lot to do with it.
First of all, I have had terrible rulings forever. I had a judge previous to him, and it would have been a very quick case. This is a case I should have won on summary judgment. This is a case -- and nobody writes this, and they all know it, but they don`t like to write it -- the plaintiff in the case was a woman.
She was so bad that, under deposition, it was over. She couldn`t have been the plaintiff. It was a disaster. They went before the judge. They said, we don`t want her to be the plaintiff. We want to put somebody else in. So, we said, well, that`s fine. Dismiss the case. You have to dismiss the case.
Wait a minute. She gave letters, the most incredible reviews of the college you have ever seen, of the university. She gave the most incredible. Then, on top of it, we have a tape where she`s talking about it in the most glowing terms. You wouldn`t speak about your college...
DICKERSON: Mr. Trump, what does this have to do with his parents before from Mexico? How is that...
TRUMP: No, no, excuse me, excuse me. I`m just saying, we`re getting terrible rulings.
We go to the judge, we say to the judge, hey, you can`t let her out of the case. He let her out of the case. We said, well, if you`re going to let her out of the case, she`s the plaintiff. If you`re going to let her out of the case, the case is over. No, the case isn`t over. OK?
Now, give me...
DICKERSON: No, no, for him, how does -- his Mexican parents have to do with him not...
TRUMP: He`s member of a club or society very strongly pro- Mexican, which is all fine. But I say he`s got bias. I want to build a wall. I`m going to build a wall.
I`m doing very well with the Latinos, with Hispanics, with the Mexicans. I`m doing very well with them, in my opinion. And we`re going to see, you`re going to see, because you know what? I`m providing jobs. Nobody else is giving jobs.
But just so you understand, this judge has treated me very unfairly. He`s treated me in a hostile manner. And there`s something going on. When a woman can be a plaintiff in a case and then say, I don`t want to be -- and you know why they don`t want to be a plaintiff? They didn`t want her. The lawyers asked that she not be a plaintiff because they would have lost the case immediately.
DICKERSON: So, I`m trying to figure out your thinking here, though.
If his Mexican heritage, the fact that his parents were Mexican immigrants, is a barrier to him doing his job, why would any Mexican voter vote for you? Wouldn`t they be -- the same barrier, the same problem?
TRUMP: No, no, that`s a whole different thing. No, they`re going to vote for me because I`m going to bring jobs into the country.
DICKERSON: But isn`t it the same problem, because you want to build a wall and all the ?
DICKERSON: So, what if it was a Muslim judge?
TRUMP: By the way, I have so many Hispanics.
I made a speech last night. I saw hundreds of signs, Latinos for Trump, Latinos for Trump all over the place. And you know what? They are here legally. They don`t want their homes taken away. They don`t want their job taken away. They like what I`m doing.
Now, people can come in, but they have to come in legally.
DICKERSON: You have -- on the Muslim -- but what if he was a Muslim, though? You have had -- been very tough on temporary Muslim immigration ban. Would a Muslim judge be also out of the question here?
TRUMP: We are allowing tremendous numbers of people coming into this country that we know nothing about.
We are -- we have a problem in this country. We`re going to have big problems. I have been pretty good at predicting things, John. We are going to have big problems. We have people coming into this country totally undocumented. They don`t know anything about them.
They don`t have paperwork. I interviewed and talked to the best law enforcement people in the business. There`s no way of knowing where they come from. And we`re taking them in from the so-called migration. They are being sent all over the country. We have people that don`t know what they`re doing. And we have to stop it.
DICKERSON: My question is, if it were a Muslim judge, would you also feel like they wouldn`t be able to treat you fairly because of that policy of yours? TRUMP: It`s possible, yes. Yes. That would be possible, absolutely.
DICKERSON: Isn`t there sort of a tradition, though, in America that we don`t judge people by who their parents were and where they came from?
TRUMP: I`m not talking about tradition. I`m talking about common sense. OK? He`s somebody -- he is proud of his heritage. And I think that`s great that he`s proud of his heritage.
DICKERSON: But you`re saying it`s a barrier to him doing his job.
TRUMP: He`s not treating me fair. He`s not treating me fairly.
DICKERSON: And you think it`s not because -- you think it`s because of where his parents came from?
TRUMP: I have had numerous lawyers.
Look, I have a case where thousands of people have said it was a great school. They have written reviews where they say it`s a great school. Not a good school, like great. They gave it the highest marks. I have thousands of these papers.
It should have been a summary judgment case, meaning the case should have been dismissed. And I had a judge who was very fair. I have a lawyer that came in when he came in. The lawyer on other side sort of entered the case when entered the case. And we`re trying to figure out what that is all about.
DICKERSON: Would you have your lawyers say, hey, throw this out because the judge...
TRUMP: Well, I may do that now. Look, we`re finding things out now that we didn`t know before.
DICKERSON: Because of his Mexican heritage, though?
TRUMP: No, because of other things, I mean, because of other things.
DICKERSON: You have said you want to reopen...
TRUMP: How do you allow a case to proceed when the plaintiff asks to be dismissed from the case?
The plaintiff, the one that brought the suit, said, I don`t want to sue anymore. I don`t want to sue anymore. They didn`t want to sue.
You know why they didn`t want to? Because she can`t win the case, because she was a disaster.
TRUMP: So, the lawyers want her dismissed from the case. They go before the judge and he lets her out?
Well, he can let her out, but you have to dismiss the case.
DICKERSON: Yes, I guess I`m just confused how that -- what his Mexican parents have to do with that.
TRUMP: Excuse me. I want to build a wall. I can -- I don`t think it`s very confusing.
TRUMP: It has nothing to do with anything except common sense.
We have to stop being so politically correct in this country. And we need a little more common sense, John. And I`m not blaming. I`m proud of my heritage. We`re all proud of our heritage. And I want to build a wall.
Now, the Hispanics, many of them like what I`m saying. They`re here legally. They don`t want people coming and taking their jobs and taking their house and everything else. They don`t want that.
DICKERSON: Let me ask you about Trump University. You`re going to reopen it. Anything you would do differently when you reopen it?
TRUMP: Look, I guess, in life, you always do things differently.
I`ll tell you, the thing that we did very well is, we had evaluation reports done by all of the students. Without that, it would be my word against their word, I guess, or somebody`s word against their word.
We have evaluation reports where we have thousands of them, thousands of them. And these reports, they`re very detailed reports. What did you think of the instructors? What do you think of this? What do you think of the questions? One to five. Mostly five, five being excellent, right? It`s from one to five, five being the best.
And people circled. I`m being sued by people that have given these tremendous reports. Now, they`re going to say, oh, but they were forced. Who forced them? Nobody forced them. You mean they forced thousands of people to sign reports? Nobody forced them to sign the report.
And many, it says remarks on them. Many have been -- handwriting, beautiful statements about the school. Look, it`s very simple. It`s called, if I have chance to get my money back, let me get my money back.
DICKERSON: Last question. Should the U.S. go to the Olympics still with the threat of Zika in Brazil?
TRUMP: The answer is, yes, but certainly, if an athlete wouldn`t want to do it, they should the right not to do it, but I would say yes.
DICKERSON: All right, Mr. Trump, thank you very much.
TRUMP: Thank you very much.
DICKERSON: We will be back in one minute with a look back at the life of Muhammad Ali.
DICKERSON: We lost Muhammad Ali on Friday, a man whose impact went far beyond his sport.
DICKERSON (voice-over): Ali was a boxer and, as he let the world know, so much more.
MUHAMMAD ALI, BOXING HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION: That`s why I say I`m the greatest. I`m a poet. I`m a movie star. I`m an actor. I`m a fighter. And most of all, I`m pretty.
DICKERSON: A three-time heavyweight champion of the world, Ali was known for his unorthodox style, rolling along the ropes to avoid a flurry of blows.
ALI: I`m going to float like a butterfly and sting like a bee. His hands can`t hit what his eyes can`t see.
DICKERSON: But for a man who made his living dancing around the ring, he became a legend when he took a stand. In 1964, he announced he was giving up what he called his slave name of Cassius Clay and converting to Islam.
QUESTION: Cassius Clay is a name no more. Is that?
ALI: Yes, sir. It`s Muhammad Ali. Muhammad means worthy of all praise, and Ali means most high.
DICKERSON: Ali was a militant in the debate over what it meant to be black and live in America.
He asserted his greatness when in some parts of the country a black man who did that could be killed for it. By 1967, Ali became a pariah, refusing to join the Army on religious grounds during the Vietnam War. At the height of his talent, he sacrificed his fame, title and liberty for his beliefs, marking a new era in political activism by a star athlete. His comeback bouts with George Foreman and Joe Frazier in the 1970s made him a global celebrity. And, in 1981, he even put his fame to use.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The former heavyweight champion went to a window and reportedly yelled, "I`m your brother, I want to help you."
DICKERSON: By talking a suicidal man back from the brink.
For the last half of his life, Ali battled Parkinson`s disease, rallying in 1996 to carry the Olympic torch. Once scorned, he was now a hero.
Ali hadn`t changed. The times had. Writing in his autobiography, Ali said he wanted to be remembered -- quote -- "as a man who stood up for his beliefs no matter what, as a man who tried to unite all humankind through faith and love. I wouldn`t even mind," he wrote, "if folks forgot how pretty I was."
Muhammad Ali was 74.
DICKERSON: Joining us now is "New York Times" sports columnist William Rhoden and, in New York, Muhammad Ali biographer Thomas Hauser, author of "His Life and Times" and a new book out today, "Muhammad Ali: A Tribute to the Greatest."
Bill, I want to start with you.
Explain for people who may not have seen the whole course of Muhammad Ali`s life where do you put your finger on the greatness of Muhammad Ali? Was it boxer, civil rights, humanitarian, what?
WILLIAM C. RHODEN, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": So much, John, because you covered every one.
For me, the first thing was -- I never thought I would feel this sad. I knew this was coming. And I find myself feeling sadder than I thought I would. But remember the first -- this guy has been in my life since I was like 13 years old.
And it was through boxing. I was the only black kid in my -- in Harvey, Illinois, Catholic school. I was the only black guy. Leading up to it, everybody was talking all this trash about Ali and Ali.
So, I remember getting ready to watch the fight. My father was a Joe Louis guy, which means he was kind of a Sonny Liston guy. Remember, it was February. And so, just before the fight went on, my dad put on his coat, his overcoat. And he was going. I said, where are you going? He said, I`m going out to catch Clay.
And so -- and that was the first time we find ourselves competitively on sort of the opposite ends of sort of the fence, but...
DICKERSON: Catch him, meaning he`s going to get knocked out.
RHODEN: Oh, no, no. He thought -- yes, he thought that Liston was going to knock him in the middle, so he was going to the yard and catch him. That was my dad`s humor.
And so -- but for every phase of my life, when I`m 16, 17, and the war was real. As you know, I`m like -- this is `67. The war is real. And we`re thinking, what are we going to do about -- so, at every phase of my life, including now, Ali sort of was there as this...
DICKERSON: Thomas, tell me about -- let`s -- about Muhammad Ali as a boxer. Why was he so good?
THOMAS HAUSER, AUTHOR, "MUHAMMAD ALI: HIS LIFE AND TIMES": Well, let me just get one thing off my chest.
I was listening to Donald Trump at the top of this telecast. And it brought back a memory of a dinner I had attended at the Taj Mahal, the Trump Taj Mahal, as it was called then, in the mid-1990s. It was one of those dinners where Muhammad was given an award, one of these big gala events.
Donald Trump was sitting at the same table as Muhammad. And at one point in the evening, Muhammad leaned over and whispered to me, "He`s not as big as he thinks he is."
That was one of many times when Muhammad was right.
Now, in terms of Muhammad, why he was great, he was arguably the greatest fighter of all time. He was a beacon of hope for oppressed people all over the world. Every time he looked in the mirror and said, "I`m so pretty," what he was saying, before it became fashionable was, black is beautiful.
When he refused induction into the United States Army, he stood up for the proposition that, unless you have a very good reason for killing people, war is wrong. That`s a lesson we still haven`t learned. People all over the world haven`t learned it.
But I think in the end his greatest contribution might have been that there was an aura of pure goodwill and love about him. He taught us how to love.
DICKERSON: All right.
And we`re going to take a quick break right here, be back with more of our conversation. So, stay with us.
DICKERSON: Don`t go away. We will be right back.
And be sure to tune in next week, when we sit down with Speaker Paul Ryan in his first interview since his decision to endorse Donald Trump.
DICKERSON: Some of our CBS stations are leaving us now, but, for most of you, we will be right back with a lot more FACE THE NATION, including a look back at the legendary life of Muhammad Ali, a conversation with Democratic consultant David Axelrod, and our panel, plus a look at surprises in the news.
Stay with us.
DICKERSON: Welcome back to FACE THE NATION.
We want to continue our conversation with "New York Times" columnist William Rhoden and Muhammad Ali biography Thomas Hauser.
Bill, I want to ask you about Muhammad Ali`s famous poetry, his mouth, his taunting. Was that an act or was that a part of his character?
WILLIAM RHODEN, "NEW YORK TIMES": Well, you know, part of it was an act. You know, gorgeous George was sort of his - his model. But it - it was - it became part of him. I mean, you know, one of the famous things, even in the street, you know, and, you know, he was talking about early Torell (ph), and, you know, a lot of people not calling him by his name and he really gave him a hard time. And, actually, when he was on the mat he was - what`s my name? What`s my name? And so that almost became, you know, in the - in the street where we were playing around and wrestling people and throwing them down, that became sort of the thing like, what`s my name? What`s my name?
Now, that went completely against the - sort of the orthodoxy of what was supposed to be sportsmanship at that time. You know, so I think it was - it was an act to the extent that it was show business, but it was - also came out of the (INAUDIBLE) of style which really, to me, helped define sort of the young, black community.
DICKERSON: Thomas, when Muhammad Ali is - has the clash over Vietnam, how did he come back to become the boxing hero, the - the legend he was at the end of his boxing career?
THOMAS HAUSER, "MUHAMMAD ALI: A TRIBUTE TO THE GREATEST": People began to root for Muhammad very early on in the liberal community and also segments of the black community. After he came back from the exile, a number of people looked at Muhammad and said, well, we don`t necessarily agree with his principles, but he lived up for them, he sacrificed a lot for them. Also, the nation turned against the war in Vietnam. People began to think, well, maybe Muhammad was right about this one. And it`s also worth noting that while Muhammad sacrificed a lot, he said many times, look, there were young men who believe that this war is right. They went to Vietnam, they fought and they were killed and they sacrificed a lot more than I did.
DICKERSON: William, when you - when you think of Ali, you think of Ali and Frazier, like the twin people together.
DICKERSON: But Joe Frazier returned to his boxing club by the railroad tracks. I mean two very different courses in life.
RHODEN: Yes. You know, and again, that was - that was very interesting too because, again, you know, the black community is complex. There are a lot of ways to be black. Well, actually, the range isn`t that great. There are a lot of ways to be black, but at the end of the day I think what Ali stood for is that at the end of the day it`s about - it`s about defending black people, caring for black people, fighting for black people. And - and I think the thing that`s going to live on for me in the spirit of Ali lives, is that early on, when I was 17, he said, listen, you live in a country of trinkets and they`re going to throw a lot of trinkets at you. There`s so much wealth here. You choose between wealth and principle. And to have somebody you admire so much at an early age tell you about the essence of this country, and that as you grow up they`re going to throw a lot of wealth at you and you`ve got to make a choice, it`s going to be the belt or principle.
DICKERSON: Thomas, let me ask you, as a final question, about Muhammad Ali after - with Parkinson`s, the final stage of his life. Tell us about that stage.
HAUSER: It was sad to watch, this long, sad goodbye. I can`t think of a parallel, really, for 30 years the whole world watched this man become more and more debilitated. He did it very publicly. What`s happening now is a time of mourning is moving into a time of celebration. So to everybody who loved Ali, I would say, don`t cry because he`s gone, smile because we had him.
DICKERSON: All right, Thomas Hauser, on that note, thanks so much.
We`ll be back in a moment with our new battleground tracker polls in Tuesday`s Democratic primary states. Stay with us.
DICKERSON: Turning now to the Democratic race ahead of Tuesday`s primaries. CBS News battleground tracker polls show a lopsided lead for Hillary Clinton in New Jersey. She has 61 percent to Bernie Sanders at 34 percent. In California, there is a much closer race. Bernie Sanders has closed the gap and is now only two points down with Clinton at 49 and Sanders at 47 percent.
We turn now to Democratic strategist and CNN`s senior political consultant David Axelrod.
David, it looks like on Tuesday Hillary Clinton is going to lock things up, but Bernie Sanders says there is going to be a contested convention. Explain how those two things can happen and what that means?
DAVID AXELROD, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CONSULTANT: Yes, I think we need a little reality check here. The fact is, she needs about 60 delegates to clinch the nomination. There are 781 at stake in the next few days. And so she will probably - she will almost certainly clinch the nomination before the polls close in California. She will have led the primary season in delegates by pledged delegates, elected delegates, by about 300 delegates or more. And the popular vote by three million. And now Bernie Sanders is in the ironic position of turning to these super delegates, these party officials, these - the party elite, to overturn the verdict of voters. And I think that that`s a very awkward position to be if you`re trying to lead a political revolution.
DICKERSON: Let me ask you about Hillary Clinton`s speech this week, the very tough attack on Donald Trump. We talked to her a month ago and she said, I`m not going to bother with Donald Trump. I`m going to talk about my campaign. Then she gave a kind of Trump-like, sustained, long speech with attack after attack on policy but also calling him a whole series of names. What do you make of that switch?
AXELROD: Well, I thought it was imprudent when she made the first comment because, obviously, you can`t - you can`t deal with Donald Trump by ignoring him. He insists that you not ignore him. And, you know, one of the mistakes Republicans made in the primaries was, they didn`t take him on vigorously from the start. She clearly can`t make that mistake. And I think Thursday was probably her best day in the whole campaign.
First of all, that`s her event, standing in front of those flags, giving a very sober speech, as she did, is what she feels comfortable with. But, secondly, it was a very lacerating speech and it provoked the kind of response that almost - almost reinforced the point she was trying to make, which is, temperamentally, Donald Trump isn`t suited for the presidency.
And for Trump the challenge is, can he change in any way and - and - and demonstrate to people that he has that element of discipline that`s necessary when you`re in a job that involves mortal power.
DICKERSON: She also suggested Donald Trump likes to throw up shiny objects when he doesn`t want to talk about something else, but she`s, obviously, got something she doesn`t want to talk about, that inspector general`s reports, the bad reviews she`s gotten in terms of the answers to the inspector general`s report. So should we read anything into that, that this was her own shiny object?
AXELROD: Well, I think this is her core case and I think anybody who would be running against Donald Trump would be making the same case. There`s no doubt that the e-mail situation continues to nag at her. I think it was very damaging and I think it - it was poor judgment, as -as she and others have acknowledged. She hasn`t handled it particularly well. But her hope is, and expectation I assume, is that it will pass. But for her setting up this stark contrast is absolutely essential in part because she wants to make that case for voters, but in part because every time she does it, she draws a response from Trump that only reinforces her case. DICKERSON: Is this a shot in the arm for Democrats too? There were some people worried about kind of the Clinton campaign.
AXELROD: Oh, I absolutely - you know, my - my soundings around the country were such that, you know, Democrats were dispirited by the campaign that she had run to date. It seemed a little flaccid. She seemed more restrained.
This was - this - this speech was a shot of adrenaline for her. My - my - my guess is it may help her Tuesday in the California primary. This is what a lot of Democrats were hoping to see.
DICKERSON: All right, David Axelrod, thanks so much for being with us.
AXELROD: Good to see you, John.
DICKERSON: And we`ll be right back with our panel.
DICKERSON: Joining us now for some political analysis is "USA Today`s" Washington bureau chief Susan page, chief Washington correspondent for "The Washington Post," Dan Balz, plus national editor of the "Cook Political Report," Amy Walter, and executive editor of "The National Review, Reihan Salam.
Reihan, let me start with you. How much of a big deal are Donald Trump`s comments and his - you know, he`s not backing down on this question of Judge Gonzalo Curiel. Newt Gingrich said it was a huge mistake for him to hold this position. Does it matter?
REIHAN SALAM, NATIONAL REVIEW INSTITUTE: It`s hard to say because what Donald Trump does, and as he did in his interview with you is, he will take one of your questions, he won`t exactly answer it. He will take words that you brought up in your question and he will say them again and again without actually addressing the substance of your question. And the reason he does that is to make it appear as though he`s responding. And, frankly, that`s been decently effective so far. He doesn`t address the actual charge. and the question is, do people actually believe that he`s bigoted or not? If they believe he`s bigoted, and, of course, much of the country already does, they`ll accept that this reinforces that view. If they simply don`t believe it, if they believe he`s basically a decent guy who`s being hounded by the media in unfair way, they`ll believe that. And he recognizes that uncertainty and he plays to it.
DICKERSON: Dan, what do you make of - I mean Speaker Paul Ryan also spoke out about - in opposition after having just endorsed Donald Trump. So you`ve got Speaker Paul Ryan, Newt Gingrich, Senator Flake. Where does this leave things?
DAN BALZ, "WASHINGTON POST": John, it`s almost the classic example of what we`ve seen throughout the entire year. Things he does and says give terrible heart burn to Republican establishment people. And over the last month since he effectively became the nominee, more and more of them have in one way or another said, I will be for him in November and yet he does these things and they react. Their concern is that it`s going to cost him the presidency and that it`s going to cost the party, both short term and long term. But we`ve also seen there is another audience out there that responds in a different way to that. And so I think you always have to be careful about predicting just how bad something that seems bad is going to be.
DICKERSON: That`s right.
Amy, the audience Dan is talking about is the common sense audience. The one that looks at all of the things -
AMY WALTER, "COOK POLITICAL REPORT": Right.
DICKERSON: We get all wound up about.
DICKERSON: And that elites get, you know, spun up about. And, you know, just let`s have some common sense in Washington, that`s the pitch Donald Trump is making.
WALTER: That`s right. It`s hard to make that pitch, though. I mean this is the whole point, which is, what we should really be talking about today, if you were the Republicans, if you were the Trump campaign, is the terrible jobs report that came out on Friday. That should be the entire focus of this. We have an economy that has not recovered for a whole lot of people who are attracted to Donald Trump, who`s saying I`m going to bring jobs back. That would have been a message that would break through, I think, to a whole bunch of people. Instead, what we`re talking about are all of these things that seem to have nothing to do with whether or not jobs are going to come back or the economy is going to recover.
The other thing that`s remarkable, I went back and went through the 2013 autopsy that the Republican Party did after their loss in 2012. And literally everything he`s doing right now is the opposite of what Republicans thought the next presidential candidate needed to do, specifically on tone. It wasn`t just, he needs to come out and support immigration, or do better with these groups. It said, if we have a tone that suggests that we don`t like these people, it doesn`t matter who our policies are. So when Trump says, I`m going to bring jobs back, it doesn`t matter what I say about walls or about Mexicans not being able to take my case, that`s exactly the opposite of what they learned from the last time.
DICKERSON: And yet, Susan, Republicans are lining up smartly behind Donald Trump, despite the tone. I mean, you know, it`s not just Paul Ryan. It`s Marco Rubio. And you look at the distance some of them have travel. I mean Rick Perry called him a cancer. Now he`s saying he`s wonderful. He is - they are, in a sense, and people have written this, they are basically affirming everything he said about them and how quickly politicians will fishtail to get to the - to the right place. So the Republican Party is - is getting behind this candidate.
SUSAN PAGE, "USA TODAY": I think senior Republicans decided they didn`t have an alternative. He had won the nomination. He`s going to be nominated at the - at the convention. I think one thing we`re seeing is a battle for the post Trump GOP. I mean I think that`s why you see them come out and say, I`m going to - Paul Ryan among - among them saying, I`m going to vote for him, I`m endorsing him. But I have a totally different vision on all these issues, like immigration or the Muslim judge or the Mexican judge or the Muslim ban, because they want to define - they want to have an alternative vision of the Republican Party to offer once this election is over and that is on the assumption that Trump is going to lose.
PAGE: Because winning the nomination is a different electorate -
PAGE: Than they face now in the - in the general election. This is a much more diverse electorate. It`s a much younger electorate. It`s people who are going to be, I think, quite concerned, voters, not just elites, voters concerned about the positions that he`s taking.
SALAM: There`s a version of what Trump is saying. Even actually when he`s talking about nuclear proliferation, there`s actually a version of what he`s saying that is, in my view, defensible. He does not make that case. Time and again rather than making, you know, an affirmative case for his use on immigration and trade, he actually keeps getting drawn in to talking about his personal business affairs rather than talking about the unemployment rate. So when you`re looking at Republicans, as Susan is saying, there is this jockeying for position, what do we do now that we know the Republican Party has changed in this meaningful, material way? And you see some smart people, like Tom Cotton, the senator from Arkansas, he is looking around the bend and he`s actually trying to be very cautious. Being a good solder for Trump, but also recognizing there is this national constituency in the country, how do I speak to it in a coherent and defensible way? But that`s all going to happen - that`s all going to happen after Trump because, frankly, Trump, because of his obsession with his own personal business affairs, rather than really laying out a distinctive ideological direction for the Republican Party, he`s actually not making that case.
BALZ: John, I wanted to pick up on something that Amy said about the - the economic situation. If you look what Donald Trump has done since he became the presumptive nominee, it has almost entirely been backward looking. It is not forward looking.
BALZ: He`s settling old scores. He can`t let go of things that still bother him from his successful campaign for the nomination. He needs to be reaching to a different audience. That message on jobs is something that would reach people who might not necessarily have been for him, or were still on the fence. But, instead, he`s ignoring that part of the electorate that he really would need to become president. DICKERSON: Amy, what do you make of Hillary Clinton`s speech this week? Is this a change in strategy? Is this what we`re in for, for the next many months?
WALTERS: Well, campaigns are pretty simple, right? It`s - their choice is between this or that. And it`s also a referendum. Now, this, again, this is an election that, on its face, should be an election that Republicans should win, if it is a choice between going in the same direction that this president has been going in for the last eight years, many Americans saying we want to take a different direction.
However, what she`s saying is, that direction is going to be led by Donald Trump, who`s unstable and is going to lead us into more trouble. So the change is too dangerous. It`s better to be stable than it is to have change. And that is really the only way I think that she wins an election in a time when people are saying they want change more than anything.
SALAM: One opportunity that Trump has in a funny way is that, in theory at least, he could run to Hillary Clinton`s right, as well as to his left. And so if you`re a Democrat, the campaign you`re used to running is a grind it out, this person is a right wing extremist, and, you know, there`s certainly some reason to believe that with Donald Trump. The trouble is that he wears those positions so lightly. He abandons them one after another.
Whereas, when you go in the route that she`s taking now, in the speech that she made on Thursday, by saying that he is dangerous, and actually by saying that, look, this guy attacked Ronald Reagan in the `80s. It`s very interesting because it kind of lowers the temperature on that left-right ideological contest and it`s saying to a lot of independents who have lots of doubts about her, have lots of doubts about Barack Obama, to say that, look, this is very simple. You might actually find one thing or another that he says interesting or appealing, but then there`s seven other things that he said that are less so.
And I`ve got to say, I wonder if she`s going to stick with this overtime. And I wonder if Donald Trump will maybe be able to reach out to some of that Sanders` vote. But I think that that`s the danger. But at this point, right now, Donald Trump`s obsession with himself and with his own business affairs, with his own past, makes it very hard to see him breaking out of that dynamic and actually reaching out to those left wing voters that maybe could deliver him the election in some strange world.
PAGE: But pity the voter.
WALTER: That`s right.
PAGE: Pity - pity Americans. You`ve got the - he`s saying she should go to jail for stupidity, which is a hard standard. That`s - that`s too low a bar, I think, (INAUDIBLE).
DICKERSON: Yes. Right, as he does also the classification. PAGE: As you - as you pointed out. Yes. And she says he`s unstable and - and - she`d leave it to the psychiatrists to talk about why he`s so drawn to tyrants.
And one thing he said in your interview I thought was interesting, he said, she was supposed to give a foreign policy speech and she gave a Trump speech. And that is true. She gave a speech that was really devoted to savaging Trump in a really effective way. But are we going to have a campaign that`s - that turns totally on other person is even more unacceptable than I am with - with no serious discussion about some of the big challenges that are in American`s own lives?
DICKERSON: I think - well, I think that`s right.
PAGE: I think the answer is yes.
DICKERSON: I see no other reason. Also because she was trying not to talk about the e-mails -
WALTER: That`s right.
DICKERSON: Which is another topic.
WALTER: And she was trying not to talk, too, about - I mean, again, his response to her speech should have been, her decisions that she`s made and that the Obama administration has made on foreign policy have not made us safer.
WALTER: And went through the litany of issues. And instead it was back on all these other things that we just have been talking about.
DICKERSON: Let`s switch to the Democrats here at the end.
Dan, Bernie Sanders says there`s going to be a contested convention. What does that really mean, do you think?
BALZ: I don`t know what that means, John, and I think we`re going to have to wait until we get through Tuesday night to see how Senator Sanders actually responds to a conclusion in this. There is a D.C. primary the week after that. But for all practical purposes, it`s over Tuesday night. She will have, as David Axelrod said, more votes, more pledged delegates, more superdelegates, more states won. She will have won across the board. He`s going to try to make an argument. The questions is, does he persist in that? Does he carry that fight forward? If he does, it`s going to be messy in Philadelphia.
WALTER: I`m looking for President Obama and what he does right after this primary is over. I mean I think it`s not going to necessarily happen on Tuesday or on Wednesday, but when all the votes are tallied, when all the delegates comes out, does President Obama come out and say, this has been great, good job, everybody, Hillary Clinton`s our nominee and that I think helps move the - the dialogue in a different direction. BALZ: But does Senator Sanders respond to that? That`s the question.
WALTER: Well, that`s the question.
PAGE: And the results in California matter. Your poll shows it`s just a two-point race. We know it`s really close. But it may - it matters not in terms of who gets the nomination, it matters on kind of the tone at the end of these contests and what the context is for trying to get Bernie Sanders to endorse Hillary Clinton.
SALAM: I say Bernie Sanders has already won because Barack Obama came out and said that we should increase Social Security payments for everybody and this is a good and sensible policy. He would not have said that a year ago, two years ago. Certainly not, you know, seven years ago. That is a very big deal.
DICKERSON: Why a big deal? That Obama came out or the position on social security?
SALAM: It`s a big deal that Barack Obama has come out and repudiated some of the kind of centrist, goo-goo, Social Security reforms that he had before and embraced a central plank of the Bernie Sanders` campaign. He sees where the future is for the Democratic Party. You know, whether or not he could defend that position to the Barack Obama of three or four years ago, I can`t say, but he sees where the window is blowing and it`s blowing in Bernie Sanders` direction.
DICKERSON: Goo-goo being a term for good government, not - not what your toddler says in the morning. That`s it for all of us. We`ll be back in a moment.
DICKERSON: When we started a new chapter of FACE THE NATION, only half of the 17 Republican presidential candidates had officially joined the campaign. And it was two weeks later that Donald Trump took that escalator ride into the race.
Weeks before he did, House Speaker John Boehner told us that Trump could surprise everyone. He sure did. And Boehner would face his own surprise, his career, a casualty of the forces that elevated Trump.
In our first meeting last spring, Bernie Sanders was concerned his campaign message wouldn`t get much coverage. News is what surprises us, but this year some of the surprises have felt more suited to fiction. And some of the news has felt too real. The terrorism in Charleston, Paris, San Bernardino and Brussels. Awful news to report, but also stories of courage and grit and amazing grace.
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BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES (singing): Amazing grace, how sweet the sound.
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DICKERSON: A host has a license to ask questions, but it`s your questions in airports or diners or wherever we`re rushing that renew that license. Your thoughts, your concerns about the world and even the stories of how and where you watch FACE THE NATION remind us of the place you give us in your life and of our obligation. We are grateful. To my CBS colleagues who let me be the public face of the show, I am grateful for all of your hard work, though I`m not surprised.
And with that, we`ll see you next week. For FACE THE NATION, I`m John Dickerson.
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