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Face the Nation transcripts May 1, 2016: Cruz, Sanders, Graham, Manafort

JOHN DICKERSON, CBS HOST: Today on FACE THE NATION: Has the campaign 2016 roller coaster had its last dip?

The front-runners sure are acting like the ride is over?

Donald Trump started the week on a high note, dominating his competitors in the Northeast.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Now I'm winning it. It's over. As far as I'm concerned, it's over.


DICKERSON: Then he looked like traditional candidate for a minute.


TRUMP: A Trump administration will lead a free world that is properly armed and fund it, and fund it beautifully.


DICKERSON: But the week ended on more familiar note, dodging protesters on a trip to California.


TRUMP: That wasn't the easiest entrance I have ever made.


TRUMP: We went under a fence and through a fence. And, oh, boy, it felt like I was crossing the border, actually.


DICKERSON: Ted Cruz is trying to put up a wall to stop him. He named Carly Fiorina as his running mate, but faced obstacles of his own from former House Speaker Boehner.




DICKERSON: We will hear from Ted Cruz, then turn to Bernie Sanders, who faces a decision about where to take his movement next.

Donald Trump's convention manager, Paul Manafort, and South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham will also be here.

Plus, a look at Washington's big weekend with the press.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I don't want to spend too much time on the Donald. Following your lead, I want to show some restraint.



DICKERSON: It's all coming up on FACE THE NATION.

Good morning, and welcome to FACE THE NATION. I'm John Dickerson.

We begin with the Republicans. Donald Trump now has 80 percent of the delegates needed to win the nomination. Efforts to stop him seem to be fading.

And we sat down with Ted Cruz earlier and asked him whether he thought it was time for Republicans to make their choice known, whether they're for Donald Trump or against him.


SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think it is a basic choice of what we believe. You know, one of the reasons this week that I announced Carly Fiorina and my vice presidential nominee is to provide a clear voice, a clear contrast to the voters.

And I think there couldn't be a clearer choice between Carly and me on the one side running on issues, running on substance, running on jobs and freedom and security and protecting the American people, vs. Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton on the other side.

And Donald and Hillary are really flip sides of the same coin. Hillary has made millions of dollars selling power and influence in Washington. Donald has made billions buying politicians like Hillary Clinton.

And I will say, for Republicans, if we end up nominating, if we end up in the general election having two candidates on the ballot who are both big government, rich New York liberals, we will have profoundly failed this country. Both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton agree they think Planned Parenthood is wonderful. They both support taxpayer funding for it. I disagree with them on that. They both supported Bill Clinton's law banning many of the most popular firearms in America. I disagree with Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton on that.

DICKERSON: Let me ask you then, Senator...

CRUZ: Yes.

DICKERSON: ... if the choice is that clear and has been for some time, why are 10 million -- why have 10 million people voted for Donald Trump? That's many millions more than you. He's got 300 or so more delegates. Were those people confused about the choice? Did they miss something?

CRUZ: Well, listen, early on, Donald did well when there were 17 candidates, because he unified his support. He has an impassioned minority behind him.

And when everyone else was diffuse, he won a lot of early states. And then he just had a good week, winning New York and the adjoining states. So, he did well close to home. And the media reacted with breathless excitement.

What I can tell you is, prior to New York, in the three weeks that preceded it, we saw five states in a row that voted, Utah, North Dakota, Wisconsin, Colorado, Wyoming; 1.3 million people voted in those five states, and we won landslides five elections in a row.

And, you know, you asked, are people confused? Listen, Donald Trump is attempting to perpetuate one of the greatest frauds in the history of modern elections, which is, he has tried to convince people that he's some sort of outsider.

Donald is the essence of the Washington insider. He has been enmeshed in the corruption in Washington. And, you know, John, one of the things that illustrated that powerfully this week was when John Boehner went out of his way to attack me, to call me the devil.

And then he praised two people. John Boehner praised Hillary Clinton and he praised Donald Trump. He said Donald was his friend, was his golfing and texting buddy.

If you think John Boehner is the kind of leader you want in the Republican Party, then Donald Trump is your candidate. If you think Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are the kinds of leaders you want, Donald Trump is your candidate, because he has contributed heavily to John Boehner, to Harry Reid, to Nancy Pelosi, to Hillary Clinton.

And, in fact, you know, I saw Boehner's comments. I kind of wondered if Boehner was auditioning to be Donald Trump's vice president. A Trump-Boehner ticket would really say the Washington cartel in all its force. One has been funding the cartel. The other has been giving into Democrats for years, which is why Boehner lost his speakership. We need instead someone fighting for the people and not for Washington.

DICKERSON: So -- but your theory of how you will get the nomination relies on you going to an open convention and overthrowing the delegates -- the delegate lead that Donald Trump has.

In order for that to happen, you can't do that without the help of the Washington establishment that you have just been talking about.

CRUZ: John, here is where we are. Nobody is going to get to 1,237 before Cleveland. I'm not going to get there, but neither is Donald Trump.

We're going to go to contested convention. When we arrive in Cleveland, I'm going to have a bunch of delegates. Donald is going to have a bunch of delegates. And it's go to be a battle to see who can earn the support of a majority of the delegates elected by the people.

DICKERSON: Let me ask you this, though, Senator. There's no question that you are the establishment's preferred candidate in that open convention competition. You don't deny that, do you?

CRUZ: Of course there's a question. John Boehner, the essence of the Washington establishment...

DICKERSON: But he's not the only...


CRUZ: ... called me Lucifer in the flesh. And he said Donald Trump is his texting and golfing buddy.

Listen, the Washington cartel, the lobbyists -- Donald Trump's campaign is run by Washington lobbyists. His campaign manager is a 40-year Washington lobbyist. His lobbyist campaign manager went and told the heads of the RNC that Donald is just playing a role, that he doesn't believe any of this, that he's just saying what he thinks the voters want to hear and he will be someone totally different.

John, you have known me a little while now. I'm the same person yesterday, today, and tomorrow. As president, I'm going to do the exact same things I have promised to do. We're going to repeal Obamacare, pass a flat tax, lift the burdens on small businesses, bring back jobs and economic growth, bring manufacturing jobs back to this country.

Donald changes as the wind blows because the only thing Donald is interested in is Donald, whatever makes him rich. And we have seen the bipartisan corruption of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump and John Boehner, who sell out their principles.

I think the American people want principled leaders who actually have a core set of beliefs.

DICKERSON: But if, in Cleveland, your scenario were to go forward, the person who has millions more votes -- that won't change. He will go to the convention, Donald Trump will, with millions more human being votes, real people, regular folks supporting him. And you are hoping to overthrow that with more delegates.

In a situation where delegates over people, won't that lead to riots?

CRUZ: No, it won't, although Donald may do everything he can to encourage riots.

You know, overthrow is such a loaded spin word as to bring nothing but chuckles. I can tell you, the last contested convention we had, 1976, Ronald Reagan had a million more votes than Gerald Ford. But Gerald Ford got the votes of the majority of the delegates.

If you look back to the very first Republican Convention, in 1860, our very first candidate for president, Abraham Lincoln, came in to a contested convention, he was second in the balloting. And on the third ballot, he won a majority.

The test is to win a majority. And Donald cannot win a majority. Majorities matter. And it's why Donald wants to change the rules and rig the system.

I will use a football analogy. If you're on the 30-yard line, it's not a touchdown. Donald right now is on the 30-yard line, and he wants everyone to say, hey, the game is over because I'm past the 50.

So what? He cannot earn a majority. And what we have got to do -- actually, this week illustrated something powerful, John. If you contrast the people who are standing with me, Carly Fiorina, Indiana Governor Mike Pence, on the other side, Donald Trump was proudly trumpeting the support of Mike Tyson, a convicted rapist who served three years in prison here in Indiana for rape.

And Donald Trump said, well, Tyson is a tough guy. You know what, John? I don't think rapists are tough guys. I think rapists are weak. They're bullies and they're cowards. And Donald may be really proud of his support from a convicted rapist. I'm proud of the support of Carly Fiorina and Governor Mike Pence.

And Republicans across this country are coming together, saying, we don't need a bully, we don't need someone who yells and screams and insults. We need someone who understands how to bring jobs back to this country, how to defend the Constitution and Bill of Rights, and how to keep America safe from our enemies, especially radical Islamic terrorism.

DICKERSON: All right, Senator Cruz, we're going to have to leave it there. Thanks so much.

CRUZ: Thank you, John.


DICKERSON: Turning now to the Democratic race, Hillary Clinton is moving closer to securing the nomination.

The man still hoping to stop her, Senator Bernie Sanders, is here with us.

Welcome, Senator.

So, right now, what is the goal of the Sanders campaign?

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: To win the Democratic nomination and then to win the general election.

Right now, we have about 45 percent of the pledged delegates. There are 10 states and some other contests coming up. We think we're strong in many of those states, including California, our largest state. We think we have a chance to win the majority of pledged delegates.

It's an uphill fight. I admit it. We need to win 65 percent of those votes. The states coming up are favorable to us.

Number two, we think we can make the case to superdelegates. And there are many superdelegates now, rather incredibly, who are supporting Secretary Clinton in states that we have won 60, 70 percent of the vote.

And we think we have the right to make the case for those superdelegates, hey, go with the majority of your state. Number two, to superdelegates in general, where she is beating us 10-1, because obviously she's the establishment candidate, our argument is take a look at which candidate is better suited to beat Donald Trump.

Every poll that I have seen, national and statewide, says that Bernie Sanders is the stronger candidate, because we appeal not only to the overwhelming majority of Democrats. We appeal to independents as well.

And the message, John, that we are bringing forth, that it is too late for establishment politics and economics, that we have to stand up as a people and take on the top 1 percent, who are now getting almost all the new income and wealth.

That is resonating in Indiana, where I think we have shot to win, and around this country.

DICKERSON: So, just to make sure nobody has any misunderstanding, because there's been kind of a lot of back and forth week, you are fighting as hard to beat Hillary Clinton for the nomination as you ever have been in this campaign?

SANDERS: Absolutely. Absolutely.

DICKERSON: To get there, many analysts -- analysts -- excuse me -- who look at the pledged delegates just say, it's mathematically impossible. Do you -- are they wrong?

SANDERS: Here it is. It's difficult. It's not impossible. We will need 65 percent of the remaining 10 contests, plus D.C., plus Puerto Rico, et cetera, to do it. Now, 65 percent is a pretty heavy climb. But these are states, by the way, that I think we're going to do very, very well in California. California is out there.

California happens to be perhaps the most progressive state in this country. They have the most delegates. It's a tough fight. But the other point that we will make again is that, if the Democrats want to defeat Hillary Clinton, if they want the campaign that has the excitement, the energy, the young people, a large voter turnout, I think our campaign is that campaign.

DICKERSON: Your campaign relies, it seems to me, very heavily on this idea of winning by superdelegates.

In talking to your supporters over time before, months ago, they said superdelegates were unfair, it was anti-democratic.


DICKERSON: But now the Sanders victory march relies on superdelegates.

SANDERS: No, no, John, no, that's not the point at all.

What is unfair is, when I win a state by 70 percent of the vote, and superdelegates in that state vote for Hillary Clinton because they're part of the Democratic establishment. That's unfair.

What is unfair is, before I even get into the campaign, Hillary Clinton has some 400, 500 superdelegates who are on her side. That is unfair.

But it is not unfair to say to these superdelegates, to say, OK, look, do you want to defeat Trump, capture the White House, not give it over to some right-wing Republican, take look at which candidate is better suited, according to virtually every national and statewide poll, to defeat Donald Trump? And I think I am that candidate.

DICKERSON: And what if a superdelegate is thinking about going to you, but Hillary Clinton won their state? Presumably, they should stick with Hillary Clinton.

SANDERS: I think, look, there's not a rigid rule.

But I think -- if you win -- Hillary Clinton wins with 53 percent of the vote -- she won Illinois by a point, sure. But when a candidate, whether it's Clinton or myself -- she demolished us in Mississippi, you know? I think the superdelegates should support her in Mississippi.

But when, in states like Colorado and in many other states, Utah, et cetera, we win the overwhelming majority of the vote, I think those superdelegates should go with their state.

And what this is really about, John, is that the American people from one end of this country to the other are asking fundamental questions about why we are the only major country on Earth not to provide paid family and medical leave, not to provide health care to all through our Medicare-for-all single-payer program, why we have so much income and wealth inequality.

The American people really do want change. And people who want change are going to come out to vote. And a large voter turnout means Democrats win.

DICKERSON: What is your response to your colleague Senator Jeff Merkley, who supported you, but said that, if there's no viable path for you, that you should unify, and that the party needs to be unified?

SANDERS: Well, of course the party needs to be unified, and it will be unified after the convention in July.

And this is what I believe. I believe that it is good for American democracy when we have a vigorous debate on the issues. And I believe it is good for the Democratic Party when we have a vigorous debate on the issues.

I have tried throughout this campaign to run an issue-oriented campaign. And you know what? Sometimes, it's hard with the media, because you guys are more interested in political gossip than real issues facing the American people.

But that's what I have tried to do, not make personal attacks against Hillary Clinton. And I think we're going to continue that debate as to which candidate is representing working people, which candidate will demand that the wealthy and large corporations start paying their fair share of taxes, that we make public colleges and universities tuition-free, that we address this global crisis of climate change.

I believe that we have to impose a tax on carbon. Secretary Clinton does not. We have lot of differences of opinion. The American people should hear that. Democrats should hear that.

DICKERSON: You have reached the one-year milestone of your campaign.


DICKERSON: What does that -- reflecting quickly on that, what does milestone mean to you?

SANDERS: It means we have come an extraordinary distance in one year.

You know, when we started, we were considered to be a fringe candidate. We have now won over nine million votes. We have won 16 states. We have won in almost every contest a majority of people 45 years of age or younger, which means that our ideas are the future of the Democratic Party, that young people are now getting involved in a way that no one thought possible. I think what is going on now, people are looking at the status quo, John, and they're looking at the establishment, and they're saying, as a nation, we can do much better. We need real change.

DICKERSON: All right, Senator Sanders, thank for being with us.

SANDERS: My pleasure.

DICKERSON: We will be back in one minute.


DICKERSON: And we're back with Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, former-presidential-candidate-turned-Ted-Cruz-supporter.


DICKERSON: He's in Clemson, South Carolina.

Senator, sorry. I got your history there a little mangled.

Tell us, what is the situation with the stop Trump movement?

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: Well, I think Indiana is a big test of it.

I'm advising Ted, go to the last vote. Trump's gotten 40 percent of the popular vote. That doesn't give you 1,237 delegates. I think you could still stop, even if you lose in Indiana. So, my view to Ted is to stop -- fighting.

And there's been a lot of talk about Lucifer. I think Lucifer may be the only person Trump could beat in a general election. But when it comes women and Hispanics, Trump polls like Lucifer. So, this is a contest between conservatism and Trumpism. And Trumpism will get creamed at the ballot box, hurting our House and Senate chances.

So this is why I'm so behind Ted.


DICKERSON: You mentioned -- you mentioned Lucifer. That was a comment made by former House Speaker John Boehner, a former colleague of yours.

GRAHAM: Right. Yes, a friend, too.

DICKERSON: What is that?

GRAHAM: He's a friend.

DICKERSON: He's a friend.

So, but that -- if you're trying to survive as a candidate, that's not a great thing to be have said about you out there.


GRAHAM: Well, no.

But there's a civil war going on in the Republican Party, obviously. John and I are very close friends, but he's embracing Donald Trump, and I am not. Why? Because I believe Donald Trump's foreign policy is isolationism. It will lead to another 9/11.

Trump doesn't understand the Obama-Clinton mistakes. They didn't intervene in Iraq. They withdrew from Iraq. Obama didn't intervene in Syria. He failed that against sound military advice when it would have mattered in Syria.

The people of Libya rose up against Gadhafi. Our failure was not to follow through. And Trump never mentioned Afghanistan. So his foreign policy to me is just isolationism. We're either going to fight radical Islam over there in their backyard or in our backyard.

But Trump is the most unelectable candidate we could put up against Hillary Clinton. Women and Hispanics hate his guts, for good reason.

DICKERSON: Well, OK, let's unpack some of that.

First, let's talk about Senator Bob Corker, your colleague in the Senate, chairman of the federal -- excuse me -- chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, who said that the speech you just criticized there was a good speech, challenged the conventional wisdom in the foreign policy world.

GRAHAM: Yes. Yes.

DICKERSON: He seemed to think it was OK. He's no dummy.

GRAHAM: No, he's no dummy, but I completely disagree with Bob. He's a friend also.

Obama did not intervene in Iraq. We had Iraq in a good place. He withdrew all of our forces, against sound military advice. He didn't intervene in Syria. His entire national security team advised President Obama to help the Free Syrian Army when Assad was on the ropes. He took a pass.

That's how ISIL came about. ISIL came about because of poor foreign policy choices by President Obama. Leading from behind is not working. I was hoping to hear from Donald Trump an alternative to leading from behind, and I did not hear that alternative.

In Donald Trump's world South Korea, Japan and Germany are free- riders. In my world, they're valuable allies that have made the world and America safer. So, we really do have a very different view of how to defend America.

And I think Hillary Clinton is an incredibly flawed candidate, but she will mop the floor with Donald Trump, because, with women and Hispanics, they hate Donald Trump because he's so harsh and he's so cruel in his foreign -- in his policies toward illegal immigration, and he's so insulting toward women in general.

The Republican Party, if we embrace Donald Trump, you are rejecting conservatism for Trumpism, which is a cult of a strong man that absolutely is no where near conservatism.

DICKERSON: So, nevertheless, two of your friends have said...



DICKERSON: ... things already. We have only gotten -- we have gotten two people who are supporting him.

Also, Senator John Cornyn said favorable things about Donald Trump.

GRAHAM: Right.

DICKERSON: There is this feeling in the party among people I talk to, there's plenty of reporting out there that the energy of the party is no longer with the stop Trump movement, but it is with Republicans getting in behind Donald Trump and his candidacy.

GRAHAM: I don't see it that way.

I will tell you this. If Trump fails on first ballot, most of the South Carolina delegates will vote for Ted Cruz. And if I'm a delegate, I will be one of them.

Let me just tell my friends, who I really do respect, if you are embracing Donald Trump, you're destroying conservatism. You will make it hard for this party to ever regain footing with Hispanics, because his immigration proposal is unworkable, is hateful. When it comes to women, we're alienating women, who should be coming our way after eight years of Obama.

So, to my friends, if you think Donald Trump is the answer to the Republicans' problems with women and Hispanics, I disagree. If you think his foreign policy is sound, you are obviously not listening to the same man I'm listening to.

So, there's a civil war going on in the Republican Party. I hope and pray that Ted Cruz, who is a reliable conservative, can carry the banner in November, so we don't get wiped out.

DICKERSON: What is your advice to your Republican colleagues who are in states, senators who are up for reelection? If Donald Trump is the nominee, what should they do?

GRAHAM: Be your own person. Reject Donald Trump's approach to solving immigration, because it won't work and it's hateful.

Establish your own persona and your own relationship with American women voters. Embrace conservatism. Reject Trumpism. Do not buy the siren song of isolationism. Donald Trump said he rejects the siren song of globalization.

Well, let me tell you, Donald, globalization is here to stay. And this is a religious war. They're compelled by their faith, ISIL, to attack us. So, if you withdrawal from the world, they're coming here.

I choose to fight them in their backyard, so we don't have to fight them in our backyard. I choose to fight them with partners. Don't say that we should ban all Muslims to come to America, because it would be hard to get Muslims to fight with you in the Mideast, where ISIL exists.

Don't declare war on the religion. Declare war on radical Islam. To my Republican colleagues, distance yourself as much as you can from Donald Trump, because he's toxic for conservatism.

DICKERSON: All right, Senator Lindsey Graham with a very cloudy and hard-to-understand message there.


DICKERSON: Senator, thank you.


GRAHAM: ... to follow. Thank you.

DICKERSON: Senator, thanks so much for being with us this morning.

And we will be back in a moment.


OBAMA: The Republican establishment is incredulous that he is their most likely nominee. Incredulous. Shocking.

They say Donald lacks the foreign policy experience to be president. But, in fairness, he has spent years meeting with leaders from around the world, Miss Sweden, Miss Argentina, Miss Azerbaijan.



DICKERSON: Donald Trump wasn't the only one singled out by the president at last night's White House Correspondents Dinner.

We will have more highlights in our next half-hour.

Stay with us.


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.

Stay with us.


DICKERSON: Welcome back to FACE THE NATION. Joining us now is Donald Trump's convention manager, Paul Manafort.

Donald Trump called himself the presumptive nominee. So what plans are you make for the general election?

PAUL MANAFORT, TRUMP'S CONVENTION MANAGER: Well, right now we're starting to focus on unifying the party, beginning to talk to party leaders about the things that are necessary going into Cleveland. I guess the first thing we have to do is have a successful convention. You know, we've got a series of meetings that we're planning starting after Tuesday, after the Indiana primary, when we believe everybody in the country will recognize that Donald Trump will be the nominee of the party and that that nomination will be clear by certainly California. And as a result, the whole strategy of Ted Cruz, of a second ballot, will have been rendered not true.

DICKERSON: In terms of funding a general election, Mr. Trump has talked a lot about how he's self-funded. Will he be able to main that through a general?

MANAFORT: Well, what he's -- he's been a candidate running for the nomination. Once he is the nominee of the Republican Party, he has further responsibilities besides his own candidacy, where he will -- is the head of the ticket and where he is committed to making sure that Nancy Pelosi is never speaker of the House again and that -- that Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer remain in the minority of the Senate. So he's indicated that he'd be willing to work with -- is going to work with leaders of the Republican Party and the various committees help raise money for them as part of the overall ticket.

DICKERSON: In terms of that and funding either for the overall ticket or for himself, will he have any restrictions on the kind of money that come in? He's talked a lot about people who write checks and what they expect in return.

MANAFORT: We haven't -- we haven't dealt with that. Certainly as -- if he is going to be getting money from the -- from donors as a general election candidate, there are limitations, but we haven't dealt with that issue yet.

DICKERSON: But will he add any extra limitations? Not -- not the amount per say but from who -- who they come from and that kind of thing?

MANAFORT: Well, he -- he -- we have not gotten into the -- the -- to the point of what kind of money we're going to be raising. What he has indicated is that he would help the Republican Party, he would help the congressional committees, and he would do things that are necessary for them to make sure that Pelosi and -- and Reid do not ever come back to the majority in the Congress.

DICKERSON: He has talked about a potential running mate being somebody who could help him with governing. What does that mean?

MANAFORT: Well, I think he views himself as the ultimate outside candidate and his connection with the American people has been that he's not one of the people who have messed up the system. The gridlock that exists in Washington is not what he -- what -- what he has parted in creating. And when you look at things he's done as an outsider in New York, where he's busted through bureaucracy and red tape, he's saying that on the issues that are important to his -- and to his presidency, he will not be restricted by the limitations of Washington, yet he also recognizes that to implement that vision, he will need the help of other people.

DICKERSON: Let me ask you to respond to Ted Cruz, who said that his campaign is the essence of Washington insiderness. He talked about you, a lobbyist being in the campaign. How is Donald Trump an outsider candidate, Ted Cruz would say, when he's got a lobbyist who's his convention manager?

MANAFORT: I haven't lobbied in 20 years in Washington. I'm a businessman now. I haven't been active in the Washington scene for many, many years. You know, Donald Trump is going to be the president of the United States. It's his vision that's going to -- to -- to be the implement -- what's going to be implemented in the presidency. Ted Cruz, you know, besides being very unpopular is Washington, is the one running the conventional campaign. He's the one trying to create alliances like you would see in Washington with -- with other candidates running for office and then he reputes his own alliances. I mean --

DICKERSON: Is lobbyist a bad word these days? Trump uses -- I mean, excuse me, Cruz and Trump use it as a bad word. Is lobbyist a bad word?

MANAFORT: I think what's more important to Cruz is that he defines himself, not is defined by other things or other people. And I don't know whether it's a bad word or a good word, but Donald Trump's point is, he's the outsider, Ted Cruz is the one who's been part of the mess in Washington and Ted Cruz is the one who, you know, has no friends in Washington, won't be able to do anything.

DICKERSON: Because one of the things that's been striking about the Trump campaign is, he has gone repeatedly about lobbyists saying they're destroying the country. He's said repeatedly his opponents are captives of lobbyists. So it -- it -- it seems like it's central to his campaign, that -- that lobbyist are destroying this country. Do you think that's fair?

MANAFORT: Well, I think he broadens beyond lobbyists. I think he's talked about special interests. Special interests aren't just lobbyists. They're -- they're the, as he calls it, the rigged banking system, the rigged economy. It's -- it's much broader. It's -- it's the culture of Washington where -- where the -- the gridlock exists regardless of what's in the interest of the people. You know, as -- as Carly Fiorina said when she was running against Ted Cruz, he'll say anything to get elected. And no matter where it is in the country, you can't rely on what he says. And this is just another attack of his similar to that.

DICKERSON: If Donald Trump's president, will lobbyists be out of business, do you think?

MANAFORT: I think what will be -- the people who will be out of business will be the people who oppose the interests of the people.

DICKERSON: So would that be lobbyists? Would that --

MANAFORT: Could be. I mean I don't -- again, I'm not going to get into discussing that. I've not been a part of that scene for 20 years. Donald Trump is campaigning on something that's important to him as far as breaking through the gridlock of Washington. And he's going to bring people in who have not been a part of the problem. That's what he's said.

DICKERSON: What do you think about his comments about Hillary Clinton, she's only gotten as far as she has gotten because she's a woman. That makes a lots of nervous -- Republicans nervous about him (ph).

MANAFORT: Well, I -- the point he was trying to make, among the others, was that she's a failed secretary of state. She's a part of the Obama administration. You know, right now, you know, I have -- we haven't seen any ground swell for a third term for Obama. And -- and that's what a Clinton presidency would be. And the point he was making is, you know, that's the way she needs to be viewed. She needs to be viewed as part of the mess that exists in Washington and part of -- and a continuation of the crisis if she were ever to be elected.

DICKERSON: All right, excellent. Thank you. Paul Manafort, thanks so much for being with us.

MANAFORT: You're welcome.

DICKERSON: And we'll be right back.


DICKERSON: Joining us now to talk politics is "Wall Street Journal" columnist and CBS News contributor Peggy Noonan, Slate's chief political correspondent and CBS News political analyst Jamelle Bouie, Molly Ball covers politics for "The Atlantic," and Jeffrey Goldberg is national correspondent for "The Atlantic."

Peggy Noonan, where is the Republican race? Is it over? Donald Trump got it?

PEGGY NOONAN, "WALL STREET JOURNAL": I think the wind is obviously at his back when you win the five primaries so decisively in the past week in the northeast corridor primary, New York a big win before that. As somebody noted earlier in the program, my goodness, demographically, Trump did fine. He carried Greenwich, Connecticut. Holy mackerel, something big is happening in the party.

I do think under girding, the race is so big in many ways, but an essential thing is that Donald Trump, the rising Republican, the, in my view, likely nominee, is someone who stands for things so at odds with the long time policies now the past 15, 20 years of the Republican power people in Washington, the establishment, et cetera. On key issues like entitlement cutting, immigration, trade policies, his vague sense, I think everybody's vague sense that somehow these 10,000 page bills, which nobody reads, aren't necessarily working in Americans' favor. Also key, his non-assertive perhaps stance with the world. All of this is at odds with the standing of those who have been running the Republican Party for a long time. It's going to be very hard for them to mesh. I don't how that works.

DICKERSON: Although we saw, Jamelle, this week some acceptance. I mean you said Senator John Cornyn, Senator Bob Corker. The Republicans did seem to be following in line, even what Peggy said is true --

JAMELLE BOUIE, SLATE MAGAZINE: That's right. It seems -- I mean it honestly seems that many Washington Republicans dislike Ted Cruz so much --

NOONAN: They do.

BOUIE: That they're willing to say, you know, we'll go with Trump. We'd rather that have Trump than Cruz. I think there might be some strategic thinking behind that as well. Ted Cruz, in a lot of way, represents an entirely separate kind of Republican establishment coming from a very, very conservative world rooted in the west, not so much in the northeast. And if he were the nominee, and if he were the president, he wouldn't just be, you know, someone from the Republican Party proper, he would essentially be approaching (ph) people from outside of his corner of the Republican Party from sort of like key -- key places in Washington. And so you lose with Trump, you still can maintain your sphere of influence and just kind of sort of rebuild. You have Cruz or you lose with Cruz and Cruz really just represents an entirely new kind of power center that jeopardizes you.

DICKERSON: Molly, what do you make of where Trump is right now?

MOLLY BALL, THE ATLANTIC: Yes, I just -- I think it's funny that you say that because I've heard some Republicans make the opposite argument, right, that they feel that if they do lose either way, but if Cruz is the nominee, maybe it will sort of break the fever of the conservative grassroots. That it will be Goldwater all over again and maybe this time they'll get the point.

BOUIE: Right.

BALL: All of these Republicans in the base who believe that Mitt Romney lost because he was a squish. John McCain lost because he wasn't conservative enough. And so -- but -- but these -- this Republican faction I'm talking about doesn't see anything constructive coming from a Trump nomination because he is such an aberration. As Peggy was saying, he doesn't represent a strain of Republican thought. He's sort of an insurgent in the Republican civil war that was already going on, that Lindsey Graham was talking about. That was a civil war between, you know, the John Boehner faction and the Ted Cruz faction. And there's this whole other faction that's totally remade the race.


BALL: And I think Peggy's right, it's the first time we've seen a wind at Trump's back. The first time we've seen him actually gather some momentum because previously he would win and he wouldn't move the needle and there would be a setback.

DICKERSON: Jeffrey, Donald Trump also looked a little bit more like a traditional candidate this week giving a speech --


DICKERSON: A foreign policy speech with the teleprompters. What did you make of that speech both in substance, but also just the fact that he was giving one?

GOLDBERG: One of the most notable aspects of that speech is that bob Corker came out, Senate -- Senator Corker, member of the foreign policy establishment and sort of --

DICKERSON: Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee.

GOLDBERG: Chairman of the Foreign Relations and sort of praised it and praised his criticism, Trump's criticism of the foreign policy establishment. Of Course Bob Corker is the foreign policy establishment and that was interesting.

The speech was fascinating and it's a fascinating window into what's going to happen over the next six months, which is that he attacked Obama from the right, but attacked Hillary from the left. And Hillary has been planning all along to deal with a Rubio style candidate.


GOLDBERG: And now all of a sudden you have Donald Trump accusing her of being a war monger --


GOLDBERG: For her vote on Iraq and Libya, of course, which is going to be a major subject. And so we're in a -- this is a completely unique circumstance --


GOLDBERG: In which the Republican will be attacking the Democrat from the left on foreign policy and national security.

BOUIE: Really unusual --

NOONAN: And maybe more than foreign policy. I mean I think he could get to her left on entitlement thinking and stuff like that. So this is a jumble. This is a categorical jumble that he is creating.

I also think, we always think when we say grassroots Republican, we're kind of thinking of Ted Cruz conservative as somebody has noted. This year we're talking grassroots Republicans, we're kind of talking Trump voters. They're kind of not going for Ted Cruz.


NOONAN: That's a whole surprising thing. It's almost as if it's not the base versus the establishment, which I think you've voted, which is what we're used to, but the base surprising the establish and changing part of its nature, I think.

DICKERSON: Certainly.

BOUIE: I was just going to say real quickly, for as much as Trump may scramble categories in the fall, I tend to think that we're not even going to be able to get to that point conversation wise if Trump is continue -- continuously going after Hillary Clinton for being a woman and going after various demographic groups. I mean I -- this is the thing that constantly strikes me about the Trump campaign. You know, 55 percent of American voters are women, right? So like even if most of those are not going to like just pull a lever for Hillary Clinton. If you are attacking a candidate on the basis of her gender, I think -- I think you just risk losing outright. And so I -- I think what's funny about this election, and will be in the fall if Trump is the nominee, is that there are all these ways in which he could scramble categories. But the -- the underwriting reality of it all, he's really unpopular. And I think that's going to be the thing that dominates the conversation.

DICKERSON: Yes, Molly, what do you make of Hillary Clinton's response to the attack? I mean she was happy to turn this into a general election fight, right? They issued a card -- when he was accusing her of playing the woman card, they used this little gimmick. So this seems like a fight she's very happy to have.

BALL: Absolutely. I mean the Clinton campaign, like Jamelle was saying, really believes that this is a winner for them. You know, identity politics in general, whether it's women who believe -- who feel that Trump has insulted them, minorities feel that Trump has insulted them, Hispanics certainly, and so -- and we saw that with the protests at the -- at the Trump events in California, that there is a very large faction of people in this country that he has not had to speak to in the course of a Republican primary campaign. And those people all get to vote in November. So, you know, for Hillary, who has really had trouble ginning up enthusiasm for her historic candidacy as the potential first woman president, that has not gotten her really anywhere in the Democratic primary, particularly with young women. In the general election, she is betting that Trump will mobilize all the people -- all those people.

DICKERSON: And, Jeffrey, Senator Lindsey Graham tried to make that general election sound, that general election warning.

GOLDBERG: Yes. DICKERSON: The stop Trump movement is kind of dribbling out onto the ground.


DICKERSON: There's not much to it.

GOLDBERG: There -- there -- there is not much. There's a kind of fatalism now, I think, to the fact that this is the -- this is the nominee and people are pivoting to that.

I would just add one thing to what Molly was saying. I think Hillary will be lucky if Trump keeps -- and to Jamelle's point, that Trump keeps making this about women. Hillary will have a harder time if Trump actually disciplines himself and talks about Libya and Iraq and the State Department and all of these issues where he can actually gain some traction, at least with --


GOLDBERG: An anti-Hillary Clinton sentiment and part that have Republican base. But I don't know if he has discipline to -- to stay on that message and avoid these kind of hot button issues with 55 percent of the -- of the voting public.

BOUIE: The question is whether the misogyny is frosting for a cake or whether it's sort of the actual --

GOLDBERG: If we might --

BOUIE: The flour in the dough--

GOLDBERG: Libya is the frosting and misogyny is the cake, is that --

BOUIE: Right. Right.

NOONAN: I think --

BALL: Well, I mean, it was interesting when Paul Manafort was on and you brought up the woman thing and he immediately diverted, right?


BALL: He immediately went to, oh, the establishment. So he knows better than to play with that fire. But the question is, as you're saying, does Trump -- can Trump be diversionary in that way?


NOONAN: It's a mistake for the Trump forces to underestimate the still powerful, still there, even if it's a cliche, draw that many people -- many women will feel towards seeing a woman candidate they can be supportive of. Don't forget that. Do you -- there are a lot of women who will think this really is a breakthrough and I want to be part of it. I don't think that should be denigrated.

GOLDBERG: But you think 25-year-old women will still -- I mean they haven't been excited about her so far. You think once Bernie Sanders leaves the scene, they're going to be more excited?

NOONAN: I always gather they're kind of punishing her because she's -- she's not quite been good enough and Bernie makes her -- Bernie is a better candidate. They like him better. But their experience, their sense is, they're kind of punishing her, you know, playing around with Bernie, but they'll be back to Hillary in the general. That is -- I actually was told that once by a young woman who's a supporter. He's, you know, we're getting her in line.

DICKERSON: Before we switch over to the Democratic race, Jamelle, I want to get your thoughts. Ted Cruz is still fighting hard, trying to do well in Indiana. He named Carly Fiorina. What's the -- what -- what's your -- at the end of the week, what do we think about the naming of a -- of a vice president before you get the nomination?

BOUIE: I -- so I've been -- I've been really racking my brain about -- about this-- I don't think it gathers Cruz any particularly electoral benefit. It -- it reeks of desperation in a lot of ways. Someone who is clearly losing and then he does this gamble involving another candidate who didn't catch fire in the first place. Part of me thinks that this might be attempt by Cruz, looking past Indiana, looking past the primary, but just to position himself in the fall as like the standard bearer of conservatism. Not even -- leave the Republican Party aside, but he is the conservative candidate and whether he runs a third party race, I don't know, but the kind of in -- in sort of conservative minds say, I -- I was your other choice. I'm the conservative candidate and you can -- we can leave the Republican Party to wither with Trump, but I am still here.

DICKERSON: Molly, let's switch now to the Democrats. Bernie Sanders said he's running as hard as he ever has to defeat Hillary Clinton. What's really going on?

BALL: I -- he says that he is. So I believe him. But it was -- it was a remarkably defiant Bernie Sanders who we just heard, and that surprised me a little bit because this week, after -- after the loss that he suffered, he -- in -- in those primaries, he issued the statement saying that his primary goal was to get his issues on the agenda at the Democratic Convention, to have as many delegates as possible to influence the platform. And that seemed like an admission of defeat. That seemed like he was saying, I know I can't be the nominee, but I want to affect what our party stands for going forward. That would be a completely reasonable thing for him to want. And a lot of his supporters are realizing that it is almost mathematically impossible for him to get the nomination under the rules that govern the process. So it is interesting to me that now he is continuing to insist that he just needs these super delegates to switch, another irony for someone who claims to want the process to be more democratic.

But so it will be interesting to see how he proceeds. It will be interesting to see if he dials down some of the personal attacks that we started to hear between him and Hillary Clinton because I think that would be another sign of sort of acquiescence.

DICKERSON: Jeffrey, Hillary Clinton is pivoting to the general, both responding on the -- the women question with -- with -- with Donald Trump. But also she had a -- a -- this week she talked about the fact that he lives in these towers with his name on them, he doesn't come down into the real world. What do you think about that argument in her movement?

GOLDBERG: Hey, there are other candidates in the race who could make arguments about the real world probably better than -- than Hillary Clinton. But, you know, there's -- there is -- there is something to that.

I mean I think -- I've been thinking a lot about how much Bernie Sanders will have an influence over the course -- I mean as he talked to you about just a minute ago, the course of the Democratic Party. And, yes, there will be a -- there will be a Bernie Sanders night at the Democratic National Convention, obviously. But I -- I'd be surprised if -- if she pivots to the -- to the left, to the degree that I think some people hope she will. That would be very surprising.

I think, you know, she's right now focused entirely -- and I've talked to people in the campaign this week -- focused entirely on developing lines of attack in the Trump and, you know, using his unpopularity and using that ivory tower kind of approach to -- to start redefining who he is, not man of the people but man who lives in the tower.

DICKERSON: Jamelle, 20 seconds left. What -- if you were Hillary Clinton trying to figure out what to give Bernie Sanders, what would you give him to help him come in and unify?

BOUIE: I would give him different roles for the Democratic primaries. More open primaries, fewer closed primaries, and kind of make it easy for Sanders style candidates to do better in the primary process.

DICKERSON: All right, excellent. Jamelle, thank you. Peggy, Jeffrey, Molly, thank you all very much.

And we'll be right back with more highlights from last night's dinner.


DICKERSON: Last night marked President Obama's last appearance at the annual White House Correspondents' Dinner here in Washington, where politicians and the press put their differences aside. Hollywood celebrities joined to watch the show. And this campaign year, the president had plenty of material to work with.


OBAMA: You know, eight years ago I said it was time to change the tone of our politics. In hindsight, I clearly should have been more specific. We've got the bright new face of the Democratic Party here tonight, Mr. Bernie Sanders! There he is. Bernie! Bernie, you look like a million bucks. Or to put it in terms you'll understand, you look like 37,000 donations of $27 each.

Hillary trying to appeal to young voters is a little bit like your relative who just signed up for FaceBook. Dear America, did you get my poke? Is it appearing on your wall? I'm not sure I'm using this right. Love, Aunt Hillary.

Meanwhile, on the Republican side, things are a little more, how should we say this, a little more lose.

GOP Chairman Reince Priebus is here as well. Congratulations on all your success, the Republican Party, the nomination process, it's all going great. Keep it up.

Is this dinner too tacky for The Donald? What could he possibly be doing instead? Is he at home eating a Trump steak? Tweeting out insults to Angela Merkel? What's he doing? And there's one area where Donald's experience could be invaluable, and that's closing Guantanamo, because Trump knows a thing or two about running waterfront parties into the ground.

And with that, I just have two more words to say. Obama out.


DICKERSON: And we'll be right back.


DICKERSON: Breaking news this morning from the White House that Malia Obama will be attending Harvard University. She will take a year off and begin in the fall of 2017.

That's it for us today. Thanks for watching. Until next week, for FACE THE NATION, I'm John Dickerson.

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