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MTP Daily, Transcript 10/27/2016

Guests: Chris Collins, Glenn Thrush, Adam Schiff, Aditi Roy, Evan Smith, Susan Page, Perry Bacon

Show: MTP DAILY Date: October 27, 2016 Guest: Chris Collins, Glenn Thrush, Adam Schiff, Aditi Roy, Evan Smith, Susan Page, Perry Bacon

STEVE KORNACKI, MSNBC ANCHOR: You know about armed soldiers and law enforcement officers dressed in riot gear have now begun arresting protesters who had set up a camp on private land to block construction the Dakota Access oil pipeline that out in North Dakota. Several protesters have been led away and put in trucks, including at least one handcuffs. This as authorities are converging on their camp in North Dakota.

Again, this is an ongoing situation. We`re just learning these details. We will keep an eye on it and keep you informed as we learn more.

That is going to do it for this hour. I`m Steve Kornacki. "MTP DAILY" starts right now.

CHUCK TODD, MSNBC ANCHOR: If it`s Thursday it`s been an action-packed day on and off the trail as early voting kicks into high gear. 13.7 million Americans have already voted.


TODD: Tonight as the candidates make their final campaign pitches, Hillary Clinton turns to her closer.

MICHELLE OBAMA, FIRST LADY OF THE UNITED STATES: No one is going to take away our hope. Let`s get this done. Thank you, all. God bless.

TODD: Plus, we`ll look at what this week of rough headlines for the left means for Democratic Party hopes for a clean sweep down the valley.

And could Texas really go blue? The fact that question is even out there shows what a wild campaign this really is.

This is MTP DAILY and it starts right now.


TODD: Good evening, I`m Chuck Todd here in Washington. Welcome to MTP DAILY.

Twelve days to go, and if the next 11 are anything like this one, buckle up. We`ve got a major story in the Clinton Foundation. More Trump conspiracy theories. Shock polls, battleground blitzes, threats to investigate the Clintons before they take office, and First Lady Michelle Obama went back on the trail and unloaded on Donald Trump.

No time to catch your breath or me to speak clearly, so let`s dive in. First Lady Michelle Obama made her first joint appearance with Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail today. And in the wake of headlines about the Trump campaign`s strategy to try to demoralize potential Clinton supporters and, quote-unquote, "suppress turnout," Michelle Obama tried to light a fire under the Democratic base.


M. OBAMA: When you hear folks talking about a global conspiracy and saying that this election is rigged, understand that they are trying to get you to stay home.

Just for the record, in this country, the United States of America, the voters decide our elections. They`ve always decided. Voters decide who wins and who loses, period, end of story.

Casting our vote is the ultimate way we go high when they go low. Voting is our high. That`s how we go high, we vote. How do we go high?

CROWD: We vote.

M. OBAMA: How do we go high?

CROWD: We vote.

M. OBAMA: That`s it.


TODD: But all is not well at the Clinton campaign after a hacked memo from a former top Bill Clinton aide, Doug Band, detailed a circle of enrichment that somehow involved the Clinton Foundation`s corporations that were clients of Doug Band, donors, and of course former President Bill Clinton. As you might expect, the Trump campaign is trying to use this news and hit it hard.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If the Clintons were willing to play this fast and loose with their enterprise, when they weren`t in the White House, just imagine what they`ll do, given the chance, to once again control the Oval Office.

Hillary Clinton is the most corrupt person ever to seek the office of the president.


TODD: But right now time is Trump`s enemy. Today the GOP nominee escalated its claims of election rigging, starting this morning with an interview on ABC.


GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, ABS NEWS: If she gets the kind of win that President Obama got, more than 300 electoral votes, several million in the popular vote, will you accept that as a clear result?

TRUMP: As I`ve said many times, I`ll make that decision at the right time. I mean, don`t worry about it. I`ll make the decision at the right time. But we have a rigged system.


TODD: So that was that answer, then came this tweet. "A lot of call-ins about vote flipping at the voting booths in Texas. People are not happy. Big lines. What is going on?" That is what the Republican nominee tweeted this morning.

Trump was referring to some isolated reports of machines supposedly flipping from Trump to Clinton, which have been given a megaphone by a conspiracy theorists in sites like InfoWars. Texas officials, by the way, have examined these complaints and have so far determined they are largely the result of user error. In fact, Republican Texas judge, Nancy Tanner, yes, Republican Texas judge, put out this statement, quote, "There is nothing wrong with any of the machines we use for voting. They do not flip parties. Humans do that."

By the way, there are also isolated reports of vote flipping in other -- in the other direction, for Trump in North Carolina and Georgia.

Folks, these kinds of complaints happened every four years. In 2012, there were scattered reports of machine supposedly flipping votes for Romney. No fraud was found. In `08, some voters in West Virginia complained their votes for Obama were being flipped to McCain. And others in Tennessee said their votes for McCain were being flipped to Obama. No fraud was ever found.

2004, vote flipping was part of a larger concern about the results in Ohio which Bush won. But even the DNC`s report on those issues found, quote, "no evidence that it impacted the results."

Look, people aren`t perfect, maybe the individual machines aren`t perfect. But these kinds of reports happen all the time but they`re actually rare and they`re always quickly debunked and corrected. And most of the time you out there never hear about them. So why are you hearing about them now? Because one of the presidential candidates is amplifying it. We`ve never had a presidential candidate decide to mainstream some of these innuendo and conspiracies like Trump. And is he doing himself damage in doing it?

Let me check in right, Congressman Chris Collins of New York, the first member of Congress to endorse Trump.

And Congressman Collins, always good to see you, sir. Thanks for coming in.

REP. CHRIS COLLINS (R), NEW YORK, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Good to be with you, Chuck, always.

TODD: Let me ask you -- I`m going to use your words to me. I think it was -- actually to "Buffalo News" a couple of days ago. You said this. "This is America. Were Trump to lose, he would accept that, and his supporters would accept that. This is America."

Why do you think Donald Trump won`t say that?

COLLINS: Well, and I meant what I said. He`ll accept that, and he seems to be a little bit stuck on the idea that, you know, if there is a 100-vote difference in Florida, of course somebody is going to contest that, they`re going to recount and so forth. I just think it`s a bit of a distraction. I don`t -- I don`t agree with that distraction, but I will tell you he gave a great speech in Ohio today. He gave a lot of reasons why people should vote for him as opposed to Hillary and Michelle Obama talking about reasons why they should vote against Donald Trump.

Now Donald Trump brought up some --

TODD: It`s funny --

COLLINS: Go ahead.

TODD: Congressman Collins, let me -- no, I want to follow up on this because I actually was talking to some folks who have been trying to help Donald Trump out, and their biggest complaint is that Trump spend -- doesn`t spend enough time talking about giving voters a reason to vote for him. That he spends -- you say he says that. As you can see, he spent a lot of time bashing the Clintons. So if you --

COLLINS: Well --

TODD: What are the best three reasons to vote for Trump, in your opinion, that don`t -- that don`t have anything to do with the Clintons?

COLLINS: Well, you can always contrast it, but it`s putting America first and there`s nothing wrong with saying the Clintons put themselves first in the same breath but put America first. Secure our borders, and Hillary has said she stands for open borders, so that contrast is OK. And actually on defeating ISIS, you know, accurately pointing out why ISIS is there, because of failures in our foreign policies certainly in Iraq and Syria.

So there is nothing wrong with giving people the reasons for jobs, jobs and jobs, secure our borders.

TODD: Right.

COLLINS: Stand up and defeat ISIS. And at the same time, contrasting to Hillary Clinton. The speech she gave in Ohio today, I just wish he had been giving that speech the last 60 days. He would have this election in the bag. We do have 12 more days to go and, you know, we`ve seen, at one point four days ago, the Clinton campaign was basically declaring victory, and oh, my god, they`ve come all the way back. Nevada is back in play. He`s leading in Florida. So --

TODD: Let me -- yes. Let me ask you another thing. I want you to react to something else Donald Trump said this morning on ABC. It has to do with the Russian issue. Here it is and let me get you to react to it.


STEPHANOPOULOS: U.S. intelligence agencies believe the Russians are behind that leak. Why don`t you believe it?

TRUMP: I don`t know if they`re behind it and I think it`s public relations frankly. People are hacking all over the place. Nobody knows.


TODD: Congressman Collins, you know -- I don`t -- you`re not on the Intelligence Committee, but there are Republicans on the Intel Committee, both in the Senate and the House. There are professional intelligence agencies that have been saying this. Donald Trump is being briefed on this, is being told essentially the Russians are behind this.

Why is he calling our professional intelligence agencies into question and does that concern you?

COLLINS: I don`t think it concerns me because they can`t say with 100 percent. I mean, I do agree, the Russians are probably behind the hacking, so I do tend to accept that. But even the security officials will say, you know, it`s 99 percent, not 100. Again, that is something I wish Mr. Trump would move off of. The fact is, we are finding out the truth about the Clinton campaign and this $116 million that went to Bill Clinton. They`re now calling that -- they`re calling him bubba and saying, you know, this is another one of those issues that the Clinton family first and the intermixing the foundation.

But I don`t disagree, and I will tell you again, if he gave the speech he gave in Ohio today.

TODD: Yes.

COLLINS: He`d be in the lead and -- for me as a supporter, I hope it stays that way the next 12 days.

TODD: I want to ask you about something Jason Chaffetz both has said in a couple of things. Number one, he`s gone back and forth, he`s unendorsed Donald Trump. Then yesterday said he wasn`t endorsing and he wasn`t supporting him but he was voting for him.

I`ll let others decide how to parse what -- how we redefine those words these day. But one of the other things he said is he was basically getting ready to investigate a President Hillary Clinton. You seen to say the brakes needed to be tapped on that. Explain what your concern was about that language.

COLLINS: Well, we have to make sure -- we`re going to have a divided nation at the end of this election regardless of who wins. I mean, we`re divided right now. We need this nation to heal. We need to do that by talking about issues, some certain level of compromise, although it will be different to compromise a Republican conservative agenda with that which would be a progressive socialist agenda, but I do believe there are some areas, corporate tax reform is one. If we take away citizenship for the illegal immigrants, I think we can put together a very strong immigration package.

But I don`t think we want to start right away if Mrs. Clinton was elected and make it appear, you know, that there is a witch hunt. Now she does need to answer to some things. There may be some issues that have come up that we would like answers to. Hopefully those would be forthcoming.

TODD: Right.

COLLINS: But if she is elected president, she`ll serve for four years. I`m going to be the optimist that we can work together on some areas.

TODD: Right.

COLLINS: But that will in many cases depend on her rhetoric and how she moves forward.

TODD: Let me ask you this. How divisive inside the Republican conference is support for Trump or not Trump mean for -- for post election? Does Paul Ryan have problems inside your conference? Does he have the confidence of enough Republicans in the House to stay speaker after this election if you guys hold the majority?

COLLINS: Yes, I do -- I do, Chuck. Paul Ryan has done a fabulous job in keeping our conference united. He is a very open process. We`re not seeing bills show up at 4:00 in the afternoon rather than 6:00.

TODD: So you`re for him? You`re sticking with him regardless.

COLLINS: Oh yes. Absolutely.

TODD: You will not blame him --

COLLINS: In our conferences.

TODD: For a Trump loss? You will not blame Paul Ryan --

COLLINS: No, not at all. He was lukewarm from the beginning and his focus has been on making sure we have a majority and the biggest majority we can have going into the next Congress, and so, you know, that`s been his focus and I`m fine with that, and our conference is united behind him. Frankly, I`m not sure anyone else would want that job, it`s the most difficult job in the world.



TODD: You just cracked up the entire panel here with that -- with that answer there.

Anyway, Congressman Chris Collins, for western New York, always appreciate you coming on the show and sharing your views.

COLLINS: Nice to be with you, Chuck.

TODD: Good to be with you, too.

Let me bring in the panel. You guys started to giggle on that line. Glenn Thrush chief political correspondent, Politico, Perry Bacon, NBC News, of course a senior political reporter, and Susan Page, Washington bureau chief of "USA Today."

Glen, your chuckle was the loudest, I think.

GLENN THRUSH, POLITICO CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I`d say it`s the flossing the alligators at the zoo job, right? So far --

TODD: Right. Nobody wants to that one.

THRUSH: So far nobody wants that job.

TODD: It`s interesting to hear Chris Collins. I`ve heard this from more and more Trump supporters. They sound more like him. They`re lamenting.

PERRY BACON, NBC NEWS SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: Yes. He talked about -- he actually said it will be a witch hunt. He laid out reforms, corporate tax reforms, things we could do with Hillary Clinton.

TODD: And by the way he -- he short-circuited it, but I`ll clarify when he said you have to take away the citizenship, what he means is the path to legalization rather than a path to citizenship and that`s always been a sticking point between the House and Senate.

BACON: Yes, that was telling. He seemed to --

TODD: That was a tell. Yes.

BACON: Saying essentially we can work together with her on some issues. We don`t want to investigate everything. He may be into the more -- he`s more on the centrist group among the Republicans. There are some who want to have more. We`ve impeachment talk from other people so it`s not -- it was the whole caucus. But still you basically almost a post-Trump vision for the Republican Party, which I was struck by.

TODD: I was, too. And Susan, you know, as I`ve gotten to know Chris Collins a little bit, I mean, he -- he`s sort of the angel on Trump`s shoulder of the -- sort of, when you think about, if Trump is reshaping the Republican Party, or Trumpism, not Donald Trump himself but the new Trump voters, Chris Collins is representative of western New York, blue-collar district, you know, really doesn`t -- they don`t care as much about the social issues. I mean, he could be a guy to watch here.

SUSAN PAGE, USA TODAY WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF: Who`s the devil on the other shoulder?


TODD: Probably Roger Stone.

PAGE: Yes.

TODD: He`s probably where he would be.

PAGE: Well, here`s what`s interesting. A big supporter of Trump, right? Nobody could say he was not for Trump. He was not reformed.

TODD: First guy in Congress to support him.

PAGE: First guy and he`s prepared to move past Trump. He`s -- he`s basically saying he may well lose, and if he loses, we need to be cooperative, we need to -- at least try to reach some compromises, we need to delay trying to go after the new president with investigations. Isn`t that interesting? 12 days before the election. I mean, it`s not like the election is this afternoon.

THRUSH: Can you imagine a Hillary Clinton supporter or a Mitt Romney supporter in 2012 even entertaining the hypothetical? And then the other thing that he was talking about is this lament about if he had adopted the tone, which is a more populous economic message that he had in Ohio today, look where we would be.

I mean, a lot of Trump supporters are moving past him but the point you make about the core message and about Trump isn`t outlasting Trump. I think you`re totally right about Collins. I think he`s got that core message.

TODD: He does, and that will be an interesting group. I`ll be curious to see to watch him and a few others. And I want to go to this Jason Chaffetz thing. How much of what Chaffetz said yesterday felt like the first campaign pitch to speaker of the House?

BACON: It felt like --

TODD: I don`t mean to be that -- I don`t mean to be that cynical about it, but is it?

BACON: I sort of read McCain`s comments that we`ll block everything forever, Ted Cruz`s comments about we`re going to block everything, that we only need eight people, and Chaffetz says, a little bit of positioning for the future. You know, showing that they`re going to be, you know, firing against Hillary, making sure the base knows that Ted Cruz is going to run for reelection in 2018. I think of those things as more positioning and I`m not sure they actually reflect what the party is going to do.

TODD: Let`s talk a little bit about Michelle Obama. It`s amazing that there is -- there is one -- somebody said this and multiple pollsters I`ve talked to, Republican -- there is one winner in this election. It`s Michelle Obama.

PAGE: Yes.

TODD: Regardless. I mean, she`s turned into the star.

PAGE: She has. And who is running for president at that rally? I mean, who seemed like the person who was running for president? She`s just so good on the stump. And it`s not as though she`s had tons of practice because she has done relatively few of this kind of events. Only when she really needs to do it is she willing --

TODD: It`s interesting, Glenn. It feels like this election really is about -- it`s Obama`s vision of America versus Trump`s vision of America, and it just happens to be Hillary Clinton as the Democratic nominee.

THRUSH: Well --

TODD: And sometimes when I watch the Obama surrogates, I think this really is Obama-Trump.

THRUSH: Well, and it actually seems like Michelle Obama ought to be the nominee, right? And let`s not forget.

TODD: Wow.

THRUSH: No, I mean, just in terms of her performance.

TODD: Performance wise, yes.

THRUSH: I mean, in -- people forget that in Charlotte in 2012, she probably gave the best speech of that convention. Bill Clinton overshadowed her. And I thought in 2016 --

TODD: She had the best speech.

THRUSH: She clearly had the best speech.

TODD: Best speech at the convention.

THRUSH: But I would --


PAGE: She had the best anti-Trump speech, too, during this campaign and the speech she gave after the release of the "Access Hollywood."

THRUSH: And she`s so focused. I mean, the fact of the matter is, she`s in all these places and she`s reminding voters, and we just saw numbers come out, that the turnout in Virginia in African-American precincts has not been great in the early voting. Deploying her, she is such a focused surrogate.

TODD: Yes.

THRUSH: She always makes sure to make the closing argument.

TODD: You want one last point?

BACON: I would have thought Bill Clinton was the leading surrogate for Hillary. But it`s turned out it`s Michelle Obama. Today`s speech, for example, Hillary introduced Michelle. And Hillary was talking for 30 minutes as if Michelle was the candidate. It was really striking to watch.

I think Glenn is right. Michelle is always very on point. She mentioned the voter suppression story was out there so she kind of made a nod at that. You know, if you don`t turn out.

TODD: Right.

BACON: You allowed yourself to be suppressed so you`ve got to turn out. I thought she made -- she`s sort of worked the news in without bashing Trump directly.

TODD: I want to get in a little more Bill Clinton. But we`re going to do that after the break. So you guys are sticking around.

Coming up, the third party bubble appears to be bursting. We`re going to look at where Johnston and Stein voters appear to be shifting their support. Clearly there`s movements.

And WikiLeaks deals another blow to the Clinton Foundation. But will a week of bad headlines for Democrats hurt down-ballot candidates more than Hillary Clinton? Stay tuned.


TODD: Welcome back. A poll trend to share with you here. Support for the third party candidates is clearly declining. Check it out. Our September NBC News-"Wall Street Journal"-Marist poll Clinton 39, Trump 37, and a combined 18 points for the two third party candidates.

Here`s what New Hampshire looks like now. Clinton 45, Trump 36, 14 combined for Johnson-Stein. Four-point drop in a month. By the way it looks like it all went to Clinton. We`re seeing echoes of that decline in other polls. And it`s not hard to explain why. Johnson and Stein missed the debate stage. Johnson had those foreign policy gaffes to boot. And surrogates on both sides are advocating voting against for those third parties.

But who benefits the most from the departure? Right now it`s clearly Hillary Clinton. Johnson takes -- had been taking about evenly from Clinton and Trump, but Stein does take more from Clinton. So combined, their lower support is helping Clinton. That`s the evidence we see.

But what -- there`s still a chunk of those voters. As they go away, those will probably go to Trump. So it may explain why Clinton has opened up this big lead and then you may see some natural tightening which may come from the remaining third party folks that are definitely not Clinton but not yet comfortable with Trump but they may get there.

Clinton campaign is challenged by the way with the latest WikiLeaks revelation. That we`re going to tackle after this break.



TRUMP: Just today we read about Clinton confidante Doug Brand bragging that he had funneled tens of millions of dollars to Bill Clinton, Inc. through foundation donations, paid speeches and consulting contracts. Mr. Band called the arrangement unorthodox. The rest of us call it outright corrupt.


TODD: That was Donald Trump today hitting Clinton for a memo uncovered by the WikiLeaks dump of hacked e-mails. By the way, you may have heard him - - mispronounced the name of Doug Band, he said Doug Brand. For what it`s worth it is what was in their prepared remarks. So that typo was in the teleprompter, if you`re wondering that. But anyway, this news has created a slew of rough headlines today for the Clintons, reinforcing the worst perceptions that some have about them, written by long-time aide Doug Band.

This memo details, according to Doug Band, what the strategy was for lining up millions of dollars in consulting contracts and paid speeches for Bill Clinton from corporate donors to the Clinton Foundation. And it also makes clear just how inseparable the Clinton Foundation was to the family`s own personal business interests.

What`s interesting in this memo, NBC News has not authenticated the e-mails themselves, the Clinton campaign has not either, but Band`s firm Teneo did authenticate the documents to the "Washington Post" and others. And between this revelation, in the news this week that Obamacare premiums are set to rise significantly next year, we could look back and say this was the week that Democrats lost their shot at a clean sweep down the ballot. And perhaps it`s too late to have this stuff impact the presidential, but down the ballot another story.

And it`s not the first time the Clintons have had found themselves in this position. Think back to this time, literally, almost the same week 20 years ago. Bill Clinton was leading Bob Dole by as much as 20 points in some polls. Double digits in all of them. Democrats were looking at not just keeping the White House, they wanted to win control of both the House and the Senate, and in early October they thought they were going to do it. But then came what some have called Chinagate.

It was an investigation that focused on whether illegal Chinese donations were somehow being funneled into the Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party. Clinton still won reelection. But Republicans kept control of the House and the Senate, and a lot of strategists got you believe it was those bad October headlines that got Republicans who were demoralized about Dole back on board to vote Republican down the ballot.

Congressman Adam Schiff is a Hillary Clinton supporter. And he joins me now.

Congressman Schiff, welcome back to the show, sir.

REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D), CALIFORNIA, CLINTON SUPPORTER: Thanks, Chuck. Good to be with you.

TODD: Let me ask you, just you as a member of Congress, and your advice you would give to a President-elect Hillary Clinton. Do you think simply because of the political distraction it could be that the Clinton Foundation in some form either has to be shut down or changed?

SCHIFF: I think it should probably be divorced from the family, and --

TODD: What does that mean?

SCHIFF: Well, I think the foundation has done tremendous work and continues to do tremendous work, and I think they`re going to want to keep that legacy alive, but I think the family itself should separate from it so that there`s a clean break with the White House. I think that would be in the best interests of the new president, and that`s what I would suggest.

I do think, though, looking at the picture of the campaign right now, these new Russian hacked documents, Russian leaked documents aren`t likely to change the dynamic. I think either at the top of the ticket or down- ballot. I do think that the raise in the premiums is more of an issue for the down-ballot candidates, and I would urge the down-ballot candidates that this is an issue that they have to discuss and address. That, I think, is probably the bigger challenge this week.

TODD: Let me ask you, though, going back to the foundation. Is it -- because what this memo showed is how potentially corruptible it could be if you also have access to the highest office in the land. President Clinton was a private citizen at the time. The foundation a private organization. It is the concern what this looks like if suddenly it looks like corporate donors can essentially buy access to the president of the United States. So how do you divorce it without a total shutdown? Do you think that is possible?

SCHIFF: I do think it`s possible. You know, I think what it means is that the family shouldn`t be involved in the foundation and that others ought to run it that are wholly independent of the first family. So I think that is imminently doable. And --


TODD: Does that mean Bill Clinton can`t do any fundraising for it either or do any paid speeches if she`s president?

SCHIFF: You know, I think what it means, and again, I`m not an expert in this area. But I think what it means as a practical matter, when you want to avoid giving the appearance of any impropriety is you focus on the job at hand which is being president of the United States. Anything else that detracts from that distraction, that creates any appearance is just not worth doing. So that`s what I would suggest.

TODD: All right. Let`s go to health care. It was interesting. It sounds like you have advice for Democrats on how to handle this because you acknowledged you think it`s a -- it`s a tough issue for Democrats down the ballot or tougher?

SCHIFF: You know, I think it is an issue that down-ballot candidates need to address, and I think they need to explain that there are changes and improvements about to be made in the Affordable Care Act that indeed we have been trying to make. But right now we have a party in Congress that basically says repeal or nothing, and aren`t willing to work on improvements.

Privately I think the Republicans admit Affordable Care Act isn`t going anywhere. But publicly they`re afraid of their own base, they`re afraid to make any improvements because that is an acknowledgment that it`s going to continue. So I would talk about that as a candidate, I would talk about how I`m trying to make changes and make improvements.

TODD: Yes.

SCHIFF: Drive down cost, increase competition. I wouldn`t simply be a cheerleader --

TODD: Let me stop you here. Is there one --


TODD: Give me an example. What`s a specific bill, a fix, that could be passed that`s realistic that would increase competition in the exchanges?

SCHIFF: Well, one of the things, you know, that the secretary I think has talked about is having a public option would help drive down costs because you`d be competing with a very cost-effective way of providing healthcare.

TODD: Politically realistic?

SCHIFF: But -- you know, we tried to do it originally. And I was in support of that.

TODD: With a Democrat-controlled House and Senate, mind you, and couldn`t get it.

SCHIFF: Yes, well -- yes -- no, I understand. It`s a big lift. I think probably efforts at increasing competition within the exchanges, identifying, you know, why are some of the plans dropping out of those exchanges, but the bottom line is, we want to keep protections for people with preexisting conditions, which means that people have to acquire insurance, healthy or sick. And what Republicans have never been able to answer is, OK, they have criticisms about the plan, they have no plan of their own. They say they`re going to protect people with preexisting conditions, but they can`t really mean it if they plan to do away with the whole structure of the Affordable Care Act.

So these are the things, I think, that the Democratic candidates need to address head on and I think they also need to point to the intransigents of the other party that won`t fix these problems.

TODD: What`s your confidence level that you think Democrats could win back the House?

SCHIFF: We need a big wave to win back the House. But this is precisely the kind of election where you may get a big wave. I think you have voters turn out like we expect that they will. If the Latino community in particular that`s been so alienated by Donald Trump turns out like it has the capacity to do, and a lot of the Republican voters who are so dispirited by having Donald Trump as their standard bearer and can`t bring themselves to vote for him, and maybe not bringing themselves to vote at all, that is the makings of a huge wave. So we may not know until -- until November 9th, but we certainly could have a change in the House with that kind of wave.

TODD: Come on, with the way you guys count in California, we`re not going to know until November 11th that it`s that close.



SCHIFF: I hope it won`t -

TODD: You`ve got experience with that.

SCHIFF: For the country`s sake --

TODD: Yes.

SCHIFF: For the country`s sake, nobody wants to wait a minute more than they have to in this election.

TODD: I think on a presidential level, at the house it could take a few days. Congressman Adam Schiff of California coming on behalf of the Clinton campaign, thanks, I appreciate it.

SCHIFF: Thanks, Chuck.

TODD: Still ahead is the lone star state becoming less of a long shot for democrats? I`m skeptical. Stay tuned.


TODD: We have a lot more "MTP Daily" just ahead including a look at whether Texas is in play. But, first, here`s Aditi Roy with CNBC Market Wrap.

ADITI ROY, GENERAL ASSIGNMENT REPORTER FOR CNBC: Thanks, Chuck. Markets closing down today, the Dow loses 30, the S&P falls six, and the Nasdaq dropping 34. Southwest airlines raising fares by $5 on its domestic flights. The announcement comes one day after the airline stock took a beating when it reported a drop in revenue for the third quarter. No word on whether other carriers will follow suit.

According to a national annual consumer spending survey, people plan to spend an average of $935 during the holiday shopping season. That`s second only to the record total spending in 2015 at $952. That`s it from CNBC, first in business worldwide.



TIM KAINE, (D) VICE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I tell you, we take Texas very seriously, Hillary and I do. We can see the spirit. We can see the energy. We can see a state that has been a red state moving in the best direction.


TODD: It`s been 40 years since a democratic presidential candidate won in Texas, not since Jimmy Carter beat Gerald Ford in `76. And at that time only Bill Clinton with a big assist from Texan Ross Perot lost by less than 10 points in lone star state. Mitt Romney won the state by 16 points in 2012. John McCain beat Obama by 12 in 2008.

But now Texas democrats have found hope they think on unlikely candidate, Donald Trump. On an online poll out today from University of Texas, Texas Tribune shows Trump is still leading but they only have him up by three points. He`s at 45 percent, Clinton 42 in a four-way race from unlikely voters, Johnson and Stein at seven and two respectively.

Clinton campaign isn`t actively campaigning there. They did a small T.V. and digital ad by in Texas, maybe it was for donors, maybe it was just to have fun with Trump. But it promoted the fact that the Dallas Morning News endorsed Clinton. That was the first time that paper`s editorial board had backed a democrat since before World War II.

Joining me now for a rare appearance outside of office is the CEO of the Texas Tribune, Evan Smith, here in Washington. Yep, Texas comes to Washington.


TODD: All right. What`s been interesting to me about all the Texas numbers, your new ones included, is that Clinton`s number is basically Obama`s number.

SMITH: It`s the democratic number over the last four cycles.

TODD: What`s made it close is Trump has come down. Is that fair to say?

SMITH: You mentioned McCain and Romney. I`ll add to that, Rick Perry`s last campaign for governor. He won by 13. Greg Abbott beat Wendy Davis by 20. Trump is way under performing republicans for the last four cycles. That`s the only reason this is even a race.

TODD: And so, the point is, Texas is not turning blue. It`s just becoming.

SMITH: Right.

TODD: . it`s just not into Donald Trump.

SMITH: Although competitive is competitive. The democrats have been so down at the hills for 20 years. They haven`t elected anybody statewide since 1994. They`ll take good news even in the form of a single digit loss. TODD: So part of this has to do with lack of republican enthusiasm for Trump.

SMITH: Correct.

TODD: So if were -- you know, if it`s election night and we`re not calling it a poll close, that`s gonna send shock waves.

SMITH: Right.

TODD: . to a bunch of people. Is there enough competitive races down the ballot where democrats will see evidence that -- that -- that they actually did make some inroads besides sort of the one or two that we know are in play?

SMITH: Competitive and none. So there are probably three to five legislative seats that are fairly competitive and one congressional seat. And if Trump wins by low single digits, those people have a problem. If Trump wins by three as our poll has it, there is a layer down from that where people who don`t know they have a race have a problem.

TODD: Give me a member of congress that is not on the radar now that in a scenario of less than three points goes.

SMITH: There is not one. We have 36 congressional seats in Texas, there is one congressional district 23, Will Hurd, republican from San Antonio.

TODD: But that`s been.


SMITH: . and in fact.


SMITH: The democrat won -- Pete Gallego.

TODD: Democrat.

SMITH: . won that seat in 2012. Mitt Romney won the district.

TODD: Got it.

SMITH: It was a republican presidential, democratic congressional district. And it`s the only 50-50. TODD: It`s gone back and forth.

SMITH: It`s four times it`s gone back and forth.

TODD: So it is Texas is swinging this way.

SMITH: There`s not to be remotely competitive congressional seat otherwise.

TODD: Is it all due to gerrymandering?


TODD: Or just simply -- could you -- is it because what they did to Austin when they took Austin and divided it into five?

SMITH: Chuck, strangling democracy in Texas. We have no competitive elections. If no one is turning out to vote in Texas, which has been the case the last three cycles, it is because people realize their vote doesn`t matter.

TODD: That`s interesting.

SMITH: Yeah.

TODD: I want to jump to 2018. Ted Cruz. Is he in trouble or not?

SMITH: The fact that we`re talking about it means he may be.

TODD: Not in trouble as far as the democrats are concerned.

SMITH: The democrat couldn`t be Ted Cruz, no, but a republican in a primary challenging Ted Cruz trying to feed off of the anger toward Ted Cruz over first not endorsing Trump and then coming back around and endorsing him late.

Mike McCaul, the chairman of Homeland Security Community in the House is apparently entertaining. He wouldn`t deny to me or anybody else for that matter recently that he`s looking at it. He won`t say that he`s doing it for sure.

TODD: And is he the bigger threat because he could sell fund and not Rick Perry?

SMITH: Well, he`s the second wealthiest member of congress. He could sell fund. Rick Perry said, I`m done, I`m not gonna go do this. Look, McCaul gets in it, not an easy thing for him. The fact is conservatives love Ted Cruz even if they may be miffed at him for the moment and McCaul would have no choice but to run at Cruz from the left.


TODD: Texas is not turning blue.

SMITH: Oh, hell, no.

TODD: And it`s not turning blue in 18, and it`s turning blue in 20.

SMITH: Probably, it`s not certainly. This is Trump, not trend.

TODD: Evan Smith, straight talk from Austin. Good to see you, sir.

SMITH: Good to see you, Chuck.

TODD: Up next, a way down the ballot ad campaign that caught our eye. And in the red gridlock alert, republican members of congress telegraphing some plans on how to handle a potential Clinton presidency. Are they doing this a little bit too quickly? Stay tuned.


TODD: Tonight, I`m obsessed with the simple genius of one political T.V. commercial from way down the ballot actually from the State of Texas. It`s actually harder and harder to stand out and see attack ad this time of year especially presidential ads dominating. So, Travis County Commissioner Gerald Daugherty went another route. Take a look.


GERALD DAUGHERTY, TRAVIS COUNTY COMMISSIONER: Most people leave their work at the office.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can put 60 people on each car, so even if you add two cars, you`re talking about maybe 300 people that are affected. There are a million people in this community. I mean that is .01 to the eighth power. If you round it off it`s zero.

DAUGHERTY: All he wants to do is fix things.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So we`ve got this 18-wheeler parked in that neighborhood spewing fumes all over the place but quite frankly, it`s not a code violation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, I think I like helping out around the house.

DAUGHERTY: Please reelect Gerald. Please.


TODD: Anyway, it`s just a nice, light break here, isn`t it? Mrs. Daugherty breaks the fourth wall for that moment. She broke down some partisan barriers. Just human moment, charming, fun, and perhaps effective. We`ll see at least when it comes to exposure. The ad has lit up social media. It has more than 2 million views on Facebook.

Whether that translates to votes at the polls, that will remain to be seen, but it`s reminder that sometimes fun, positive ads can cut through the clutter if you`re willing to do it. We`ll be back after this.



TRUMP: Just thinking to myself right now, we should just cancel the election, and just give it to Trump, right? Why are we even having the election? Why are we having it? Her policies are so bad.


TODD: Can`t make it up. That was Trump just a few moments ago. Still in Ohio, in Toledo. It`s time for "The Lid." I`m -- I`m speechless, Susan. Obviously he`s going to say tongue in cheek and all this, and it certainly sounded tongue in cheek.

PAGE: Let`s assume it was tongue in cheek. He`s not really calling for us to cancel the election.

TODD: That`s the point. This is what republican strategy is like. Stop talking about this. They really believe it is hurting republican turnout.

PAGE: Yeah, and you know, when he talks about a rigged election, which is not so tongue in cheek, that really resonates with the people who are supporting him and that`s going to create huge problems.

TODD: I just got an e-mail from somebody I deal with a lot who is a big Trump supporter down in Texas and really dedicated. He says, I don`t believe why you bother to put up these polls, I don`t believe a single one of them.


TODD: If Trump wins, it look the entire political industrial complex of polling and media and all that, but, you know, I guess we are in the poll denying stage. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re in the everything denying stage, Chuck. I mean, we are -- look at the voter fraud argument. We have the Brennan Center Study which said essentially look it like 25 years of national elections and said that you have a greater chance of being hit by lightning than engaging in real voter fraud.

I went out to Topeka to talk with Kris Kobach, Secretary of State of Kansas, who is real proponent of this stuff. And I said, what are your data points? And he said, I did a 13-year analysis of all this votes in Kansas and we came up with 243 instances of voter fraud. I said, how many votes were cast? He said, I don`t know, 2 or 3 million.

TODD: That shows you that it`s basically a.


TODD: . error rate. Look, it goes back to what Chris Collins said at the start of the show, Perry. I just heard that one speech in Ohio. Keep giving that speech.


PERRY BACON, NBC NEWS SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: Literally, doing well, just talk about policies.

TODD: And then, you know, many moves to that, which, you know, he steps on himself all the time. Then again, Trump being Trump worked in the primaries.

BACON: It`s not working right now.

PAGE: Well, depends on what you`re trying to do. I mean, are you trying to win the election? Not working for that. Are you trying to create a situation where you continue to be influential with a significant group of people after the election?

TODD: I want to get you guys take on Clinton and the Clinton foundation. How bad?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it`s really significant. I mean, this is -- this hits the reputation stuff. I can tell you inside the campaign prior to the debates, they were concerned about the foundation stuff. In fact, there was a lot of conflict between the people who were doing press and communications for the foundation and the campaign itself.

The campaign did not feel -- and we saw a lot of this stuff in the WikiLeaks e-mails about the e-mail controversy, initially. Bad communication between the campaign and the foundation. This is -- this is really significant and it plays into her negatives, which Trump has succeed in driving up.

TODD: And it seems -- what`s interesting about WikiLeaks, Perry, is the professional Clinton campaign people have been giving the advice that says, you know, just detach. Get rid of the speaking fees. Put the speech transcripts out. Obviously, they hit a brick wall on this.

BACON: The e-mails keep showing that Robby Mook, the campaign manager, had good insight into, don`t use the e-mail -- what`s the problem here? Let`s get the information out quickly. Let`s get this.

TODD: Who`s stopping it?

BACON: It appears to be the candidate is not listening.

TODD: Two people. Maybe the candidate and the candidate.

BACON: These are obvious mistakes. It`s interesting to look back now. A lot of things you and I or people like Glenn (ph) and I were criticizing them about, the staff was very aware of the obvious problems and can`t really address them.

PAGE: And if she is president, are there signs that she would take their advice when these situations come up at the White House?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My favorite line, I think it was Neera Tanden who said that whoever authorized this, they should be drawn and quartered. TODD: It`s interesting. Neera Tanden is going to be an interesting test. In that if a president Hillary Clinton has Neera Tanden in the room, that tells you something about that. If -- if somehow these e-mails have made Neera Tanden considered persona non grata in a Clinton White House, that mean maybe -- she`s comes out as the big truth teller.



BACON: . who will listen to criticism. We want that no matter who the president is. I mean, knows the problems, how we got the Iraq war. You need a president who listens to advisers who don`t always say yes, sir and yes, ma`am. And Neera Tanden has come out. TODD: The non-group thinker.

BACON: Non-group thinker. Someone who can criticize the president. That`s a really challenging thing to do.

TODD: It`s bad for her if she`s president. Does it have an impact on this campaign?

PAGE: It just reinforces perceptions people already had. Now, maybe it depresses a little bit democratic turnout. Maybe it makes some people a little more discouraged. Maybe it gins up a few republicans. But nothing is a surprise. It`s just more evidence of something we already knew was going on.

TODD: I thought it was interesting, Adam Schiff accepted the premise of both things and said, look, it`s Obamacare that`s going to have more of an impact down the ballot. I applaud them. I think the American public are served when there is -- when these members just are directly honest and don`t play political games.

And neither one of them did today. And I appreciated it as a viewer. But I thought it was an interesting tell. Yeah, Obamacare is a little bit tougher to explain.

BACON: He was right about it. The Obamacare race, very easy to explain to anyone story. The rates are up. The affordable care act.

TODD: It`s a policy issue.

BACON: . maybe is not affordable. I mean, it`s a very easy thing to say. Also, you have some candidates like Evan Bayh who voted for it. No one`s really voted for.

TODD: The irony is now, remember before when democrats wanted to say, call it the affordable care act. Now I think, no, call it Obamacare.


PAGE: It also affects people`s own lives, as opposed to the Clinton foundation which is a little more.

TODD: Right. Hard to explain. All right. Great panel. Glenn (ph), Susan, and you, get rid of that cold and don`t give it to the rest of us. I`m teasing. After the break, it`s Hillary Clinton in her own words. Stay tuned.


TODD: In case you missed it, apparently it takes a village to write one Hillary Clinton tweet. According to an e-mail chain released by WikiLeaks, it took at least 12 people and 10 drafts to come up with a 134-character tweet from Clinton about the fight over a $15 minimum wage.

They started with this. "Every American deserves a fair shot at success with a true living wage. I stand with fast food workers in the hashtag fight for 15." And it`s signed with an "H," that signifies a personal tweet from Hillary Clinton. But some staffers were concerned that tweet was too strong, so on the second draft, they changed it to, "I stand with fast food workers too, I applaud fast food workers.

Draft three, blaming CEO for advocating and advocating for this person, "with corporate profits at record highs, it`s time for a real raise for all working Americans." Draft number four goes back to the original tweet. Draft number five keeps "every American deserves a fair shot at success. And then adds, "fast food and child care workers shouldn`t have to march in streets for living wages." But that tweet was too long for the twitter character count.

And comes draft number six. That loses the hashtag for space. And because the group was conflicted about whether using the hashtag was quote, too supportive. The next up with puts the "H" signifying the personal Hillary tweet back in, but so far no evidence of her involvement at least in this e-mail chain of any discussions.

The next one puts the hashtag back in, too. We`ve now reached draft number nine. At this point, it was suggested they drop the tweet altogether. But there was a tenth and final draft that they do go with. It was the previous version that was the "H," but not the hashtag, and that tweet went out at 9:23 p.m. that night. The e-mail conversation about it began more than 12 hours before that. 12 hours, apparently at least 12 people, for 134 characters.

Meanwhile, her opponent is basically on his own island when it comes to his own tweets, not even spell checking them. That`s all for tonight. We`ll be back tomorrow with more "MTP Daily." "With All Due Respect," though, starts right now.