Trumped: Inside the Greatest Political Upset of All Time (2017) - full transcript

In a behind-the-scenes look at the biggest political upset in recent history, Mark Halperin, John Heilemann and Mark McKinnon offer unprecedented access and never-before-seen footage of candidate Trump, from the primaries through the debates to the dawning realization that the controversial businessman will become the 45th President of the United States.

[man] Seven twenty-four,
roger. Try to maintain 2,000.

[pilot] Set to maintain 2,000.

[man] Coming in final four,
try to maintain 3,000.

[pilot] Three-thousand.

[indistinct radio chatter

[woman] You're looking
at Westchester County Airport

in White Plains, New York.

Hillary Clinton
coming home to vote.

This is Election Day.

[crowd cheering]

[crowd chanting]
Hillary! Hillary! Hillary!

Hillary! Hillary! Hillary!

[cheers and applause]

♪ soft electronic music ♪


[Heilemann] How's it feel?

- Yeah?
- Yeah.

I've been--this has been
a long, tough slog

and a hard campaign

and a crazy campaign.

It's four o'clock.

There are all these
people out here,

you know, who have
come to see her.

I'm just so proud of her.

I can't--I just can't tell you

why, uh--how much that

makes me feel like

just being a small part of it

is so important.

What will it feel like
tomorrow night if you lose?

You know, I think, uh,

in some ways, uh,

it'll be just--
I-I don't know.

It's sort of hard to even
kind of contemplate that.

I think there's a kind of
profound responsibility

and there'd be
such a crushing, uh,

sense of loss

if somebody
with his character

was elected president
of the United States, so...

I don't think
that's gonna happen.

- Yeah.
- Yeah.

And I'm standing here tonight,

and I really don't think
that's gonna happen.

♪ brooding electronic music ♪


[Charlie Rose] A new series
on Showtime seeks to capture

the 2016 presidential

jaw-dropping, head-scratching
moments in real time

and aims to expose
not just

the nitty-gritty
of how campaigns work

but also the people
behind the candidates.

It is called
The Circus.

Six up, TS, quick.

We'll be right back.

The star of The Circus.

It's Charlie Rose!

Are you an elephant
or you--what are you?


♪ playful music ♪

[Heilemann] What's going on?
[Rose] You're going on.

[Heilemann] What's going on?
[Rose] You are.

[Rose] Cable TV, you can say
anything you want, can't you?

I said on TV the other night,
I said,

"I fucking hate
that motherfucker."

And it just went--
and everybody loved that shit.

On Showtime--you can
say anything on Showtime.

[drumming desk]

We're gonna have
a lot of fun doing it.

I mean, it's gonna kill us.

[Rose] This is gonna work
because you got McKinnon.

That's the only friggin' reason
it's gonna work.

He's got that fucking--
where's the--

are you not wearing
the hat tonight?

Hey, Captain, how are ya?

Heilemann] Are you gonna be on
his show and not in the hat?

[McKinnon] I guess
I have to wear the hat.

[Rose] Look at that scarf.

Got to wear the hat, dude.

- [McKinnon] Okay, yeah.
- [Rose] Sit down.

[Rose] Is Halperin joining us,
or is he...

[Heilemann] Yeah, he had
his BlackBerry fixed.

Nice to see you, sir.

[Heilemann] Can see they're
fixing Halperin's BlackBerry.

[Heilemann] Watch this.
Here he comes.

♪ playful orchestration ♪

Howdy, sir.

Oh, don't stand up.

Good to see you.
Of course I do.


Can you tell us what guest

has been on this show
more than any other guest?

For a while,
it was Halperin.

What-what do you mean,
"for a while"?

Well, maybe it's still true.

- [scoffs]
- [Rose] It may still be true.

- That's...
- [laughter]

♪ upbeat instrumental music ♪

[Rose] Hey, guys,
you ready back there?


[Rose] All right, here we go.

Here we go.

Five, four, three, two, one.

[Rose] The 2016
presidential election

could be remembered
as one of the most bizarre

and unpredictable
in American history.

At this moment,
talk a bit about Trump.


♪ brooding string music ♪

[camera shutters clicking]

Ladies and gentlemen...


I am officially running...

- [scattered cheers]
- [applause]

...for president
of the United States.

And we are going to make

our country great again.

I will build
a great, great wall

on our southern border

and I will have Mexico
pay for that wall.

- [woman] Yes! Yes!
- Mark my words.

When Mexico sends its people,

they're not sending their best.

They're bringing drugs.

They're bringing crime.

They're rapists.

And some, I assume,
are good people.

How to take Donald Trump?

Hmm, well,

consider the newspapers
this morning,

at least the tabloids.

The Daily News
Trump a "clown."

The New York Post
uh, Trump

a rich guy who could
make it to the White House?


[man] I got to talk
about Donald Trump.

How does he impact this race?

[woman] I don't think
he does at all.

Look, aside from being
incredibly entertaining,

Donald Trump lacks
the seriousness of the kind

of candidate that Republicans
desperately need right now.

[woman] Once you enter
the world of politics,

there's a different bar,
different standard.

[man] To say that that makes
him serious is ridiculous.

[woman] We never said--

[man] The guy was talking
about how Mexicans are rapists.

[woman] Rapists?

People lose their jobs
over words like those.

[woman] Donald Trump touching
off a political firestorm

by insulting John McCain.

He's a war hero
'cause he was captured.

I like people
that weren't captured, okay?

I hate to tell ya.

Hats and T-shirts
right here, y'all.

[woman] The latest uproar
was sparked

after making comments
about Megyn Kelly.

[Trump] But you can see
there was blood

coming out of her eyes.

Blood coming out
of her wherever.

[man] But many people
perceived that

as a reference
to Kelly's period.

Honestly, I can't even believe

I'm talking about this
on TV right now.

Buttons, flags, T-shirts.

rump] You got to see this guy.

"Oh, I don't know what I said.
Ah. I don't know..."

woman] Trump last night mocked
New York Times reporter

who suffers from
a physical handicap.

[man] A lot of them still want
to treat him like a clown,

like a reality show guy.

The bottom line is, he is
the Republican front-runner.

[Trump] Donald J. Trump
is calling for

a total and complete shutdown

of Muslims
entering the United States.

[crowd chanting]
Trump! Trump! Trump!

[woman] Critics argue
Trump crossed a line.

Others wonder whether, for him,
a line even exists.

♪ Enemies of freedom ♪

♪ Face the music ♪

♪ Come on, boys,
take 'em down ♪

Can you imagine Donald Trump
standing up one day

and delivering
a State of the Union address?

Well, I can imagine it

in a Saturday Night

♪ militaristic music
continues ♪

He's not gonna be president
of the United States.

[crowd cheering]

[amplifier feedback whines]

[man] Go music.
Crank it now.

[Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger"
playing over speakers]

[crowd cheering]


[man over speaker]
Ladies and gentlemen,

please welcome the next
president of the United States,

Mr. Donald J. Trump.

[crowd cheering]


[music concludes]

Oh, that is amazing.

We don't win anymore,
you understand that.

Every country in the world

is ripping us off.

Every country in the world.

We lost

millions and millions of jobs

to these people.

Fifty-five thousand factories

and manufacturing plants--

Who would think
that's even possible?

They'll leave here
and they'll move to Europe

or they'll move to Asia.

It's a real bad scene.

And it's gonna continue if you
put any of these other people--

It's not gonna continue
with me.

With me, it's real simple.

I'm gonna do
what's right for you.

- [crowd cheering]
- And you.

And we're gonna bring
those jobs back from China.

I love China!

But we're gonna
bring them back from China.

And by the way,
we will build a wall.

- We will build a wall!
- [crowd cheering]

We will build a wall.

We're going to win
at every single level.

We're gonna win so much,
you're gonna beg me.

You're gonna say,
"Mr. President,

we're so tired of winning,
we can't take it anymore.

Please, don't win anymore.

Mr. President, please,
have one or two losses."

And I'll say,
"No, I won't do that."

The American dream is dead,

but we're going to make it
bigger and better

and stronger than ever before.

And I love you.
Thank you very much, everybody.

Thank you.
Thank you.

♪ soft electronic music ♪

[McKinnon] Hold on one second.
Where's the volume on this?

♪ soft eerie music ♪

[woman] Whoo!

Trump speaks the truth!

Mr. Halperin,
are you miked?

[Heilemann] We haven't really
seen anything like this

in American politics
in this millennium.

Make America great again.

This has got the flavor of

- a music festival, right?
- [McKinnon] Yeah.

eilemann] They're fans as much
they are voters, right?

[McKinnon] There's a movement
psychology for sure.

- Yeah.
- [McKinnon] They feel like

they're part of something
special and unique

and they want to be there
to experience it.

[Heilemann] Donald Trump,
love him or hate him,

he said some things that people
think are vile and offensive.

Whatever you think about Trump,
though, ideologically,

he's such a big figure.

There's a lot
of charisma there.

There's a lot of just

I understand why that guy's
a front-runner.


You got this huge
Republican field.

You got chaos
in the establishment.

Mismanaged going into Iraq.

[Hewitt] Dr. Carson,
is the Middle East--

We mismanaged going out.

- [Hewitt] Dr. Carson.
- [Cruz] The question of

- whether we can...
- Hold on, hold on.

- The problem with defeat...
- [Blitzer] Senator. Senator.

We're gonna get to you.

[Fiorina] Hope at some point,
you're gonna ask me my strategy

- for defeating ISIS.
- [Blitzer] We will get--we--

we have a lot of time.

Donald is great
at the, uh, one-liners.

But he's a chaos candidate.

- And he'd be a chaos president.
- [applause]

We need toughness.

Honestly, I think Jeb
is a very nice person.

You said in September 30th
that ISIS was not a, uh...

- Am I talking...
- ...not a factor.

- ...or are you talking, Jeb?
- I'm talking right now.

- You can go back.
- I'm talking right now.

- You can go back.
- I'm talking.

You're not talking.
You interrupted me, Jeb.

- September 30th, you said it.
- Are you gonna apologize, Jeb?

Am I allowed to finish?

[Heilemann] There's no
establishment front-runner.

And there's no sign that
that's gonna change in any way.

Brilliant. Prompter, thank you.
That was fantastic.

- As you wish.
- [McKinnon] Okay, we need

to run through the-the C, D,
E, F, G, H, I, J pages.

[Heilemann] Oh, my God.

Our brand-new Bloomberg Politics
Des Moines Register

Iowa Poll is out today,

shows Ted Cruz and Donald Trump
leading the pack

in the Hawkeye State.

They are basically tied.

We know there are
deep cleavages in the party.

And that's why the party
is in so much trouble.

- This foreshadows--
- Deep and passionate.

This foreshadows
the fight we will see

if Donald Trump wins
some combination

of Iowa, New Hampshire,
South Carolina,

three of three
or two of three.

We will see a titanic fight
within the party

unlike I can recall seeing
in my career.

- [church bell tolls on radio]
- [man on radio] It's time

for Iowa Christians
to honor God

by attending your Iowa caucus
on February 1st.

[man on radio]
If you are currently in

an early primary
or a caucus state,

you certainly don't need
the likes of me to tell you

that we're in the heat
of election season.

- This is crunch time...
[crowd cheering] the candidates
are all out there,

trying to get their messages
to the public.

- [Cruz] Two weeks ago...
- [camera shutters clicking]

...just about every candidate
in the field

was attacking Donald Trump.

Now just about every candidate
in the Republican field

is attacking me.
I-I guess something has changed.

[camera shutters clicking]

[Trump] You know, Ted Cruz,
you know, the Canadian,

he's like a nervous wreck.

He is dropping like a rock
in the ratings.

We're number one in every poll.

It's almost embarrassing,
but let's keep it that way.

- [crowd cheering]
- Let's keep it that way.

All of my people
and all of the experts say,

"Mr. Trump, don't say
you want to win.

Just say you want to do well.

Because that way,
you can't lose."

I can't do that.
I want to win, Iowa.

[woman] So the question for
him, above all others, is,

can you turn these big crowds
into big turnouts

and into support
at the ballot box?

[crowd cheering]

♪ ambient music ♪


[indistinct chatter]

[man] It's a very good night
for Ted Cruz.

He has won in Iowa,
defeating Donald Trump.

[crowd chanting] We want Ted!
We want Ted! We want Ted!

[Cruz] Tonight Iowa
has sent notice

that the Republican nominee

and the next president
of the United States

will not be chosen

by the Washington

[crowd cheering]

To God be the glory.

[crowd cheering]

You ready?

- Here, hold on, let's flip.
- Okay, yup.

[indistinct chatter]


Close that door so--
yeah, so we don't get...

Just-just walk me
through your day.

You woke up and how'd you feel
about what's gonna happen?

You know, last night,
as you were watching

the TV news,
every pundit on every station

was saying, "Cruz can't win.
Cruz can't win.

There's no way Cruz can win.
Trump's gonna win."

I heard it on every station
from every political pundit.

And yet what happened today

is, the grassroots
proved them wrong.

Off to New Hampshire.

Ah, indeed.

♪ ambient music ♪

[man] But Donald Trump,
who many, many people predicted

was going to win
at the Iowa caucuses...

It looks like a lot of people
did switch their vote,

uh, people who were
supporting, uh, Donald Trump.


Thank you.


[Halperin] So Iowa ends

and it's seven days of hell
in New Hampshire.

The stakes are higher
than they are in Iowa.

You have a chance to come back.

If you don't do well in Iowa,

you can come back
in New Hampshire.

If you don't come back
in New Hampshire

after failing in Iowa,
you're done, generally.

- [camera shutters clicking]
- [indistinct chatter]

- [woman] Mr. Trump?
- [Trump] Yes?

Uh, I think that
we did really well.

I mean, I ended up
coming in second.

Uh, didn't devote
tremendous time to it.

Didn't devote
tremendous money to it.

[reporters all talking at once]

[Trump] Yeah, Tom?

Mr. Trump...

[Trump] No, I don't think
I feel any pressure.

[reporters all talking at once]

Mark. Go ahead.

Would you be comfortable,
as you seem to be

finishing second in Iowa,
finishing second here?

I'd love to finish first.

Uh, you know, again,
it would still not be

horrible because
you're competing against

a lot of very talented people

that have been politicians
all their lives.

I've been a politician
for six months.


[Halperin] Normally when
Trump goes after the press,

he'd be vicious.

He'd say "You people
are morons, you're idiots."

And, you know, I think his tone
was a little different,

a little bit more subdued.

[camera shutters clicking]

Thank you, everybody.

[indistinct chatter]

The media,
the worst people ever!

[crowd cheering]

The worst.

We finished number two.

The headlines were,
"Trump Comes in Second.

He's Humiliated!"

[crowd booing]

Some are smart, but some of
these guys are dumb as a rock.

- And I mean...
- [laughter]

♪ soft suspenseful music ♪

[Halperin] He's doubling down
on the same style,

the same type of speech,
the same applause lines.

As the old saying goes,

is doing the same thing
over and over

and expecting
a different result.

I'm not saying Trump's insane,

but they don't see a lot
of nimble changes here,

at least in this event.

Um, Trump is-is
a little bit stubborn.

Uh, but also,
he's a first-time candidate.

So it's possible that he's
being strategically firm

in a way that's
gonna reward him,

but it's also possible
he's just not cut out for this.

[bell tolls]

[man] And the question here is
as simple as it is startling:

can Donald Trump hold a lead

after a seeing a 20-point lead
cut in half?

This state is famous for, uh,
surprising everybody.

This is where the so-called
establishment lane

is most crowded.

The race is officially
up for grabs.

Anyone can still be--
anyone can still win.

[man over speaker]
Please welcome

the next president
of the United States,

Jeb Bush.

- [applause]
- [scattered cheers]

[man over speaker]
The honorable Chris Christie.

[man over speaker] The next
generation of America,

Marco Rubio.

[man] The crowded field
of candidates, including

current and former governors
and several sitting senators,

hailed as the best group
of GOP presidential hopefuls

in a generation at least.

[woman] So I'd like to
introduce John Kasich.


You know, the problems
that we have in this country

are easy to solve.

You know what it takes?

People of goodwill.

[Rubio] When I decided
to run for president,

people came forward
and said, "You can't run.

You have to wait your turn."

I said, "Wait for what?"

This is no time to just promote
the next person in line,

because if we get
this election wrong,

there may be
no turning back for America.

Here we are, six days
from the New Hampshire primary.

And if you listen to the media,

the only choices

are two first-term
United States senators

and that other guy
who's only experience

is sitting in a fake boardroom
in New York City,

looking into a camera
and saying, "You're fired."


[Miller] Uh, this is just
a big issue for Hugh,

uh, whose radio show
we're doing, Hugh Hewitt.

He thinks your brother
should, um,

come out stronger
against Trump.

So I-I imagine
he's gonna offer that advice--

Hugh Hewitt should come out
stronger against Trump.

That's my--
gonna be my response.

Good feedback.

Since I'm the only guy
that goes after Trump

on the entire planet,

I'm gonna take advice
from someone who doesn't?

- That is...
- I think that's a good answer.

[Hewitt] Governor Bush,
it's great to have you back.

Great to be with you, Hugh.

Donald Trump
will not be the nominee.


Donald Trump's not
gonna be the nominee.

So you asked it twice
and I answered it twice.

♪ tense tone ♪

[crowd cheering and whistling]

[Heilemann] A lot of campaigns
have a lot of incentive

to talk down Trump
and try to get, you know,

the idea out there that, like,
he might be falling apart.


it could be completely true.

It could turn out
to be completely false.

It's hard to know.

Did you--John, did you get in?
Did you get in?

No, they barred me
from your event.

- Whatever. You couldn't get in?
- I couldn't get in.

I made my best speech.
You couldn't get in.

Your best speech?

That-that was a speech
that was so good...

A speech for the ages.
I watched it.

Everybody loved it.
And you couldn't get in.

I couldn't get in.
I-I showed up too late.

- It's too bad.
- Um, how-how you doing?

- I think we're doing good.
- You're doing well?

I think we're doing
really good.

Now, I want to tell you
that one of the things

that we've observed
in the last 24 hours

is that basically
every Republican candidate,

every Republican campaign,

is whispering to reporters
about a Trump collapse.

- What do you think about that?
- I think it doesn't happen.

Have a good time, John.
Thank you.

[man] Donald,
you're a fine gentleman.

Seems like--didn't seem
that happy with it.

Didn't seem that happy
to be asked.

I thought I would
give him an opportunity

to just knock it down.

- [person clapping]
- [man] Donald Trump!

[cheers and applause]

[Heilemann] Oh, he looks
really pissed at me, though.

[woman] All the way.

[dog barking distantly]

- [person clapping]
- [man] Thank you.

He remains highly confident,

♪ atmospheric music ♪


[crowd cheering]

[Trump] Oh, wow!

[Blitzer] CNN projects
that Donald Trump will be

the winner of the New Hampshire
Republican primary.

[man] It's astounding.

It is a great night
for Donald Trump

and a horrible night for
the Republican establishment.

Melania, she said
right from the beginning,

"You know if you run,
you know you're going to win."

And she said that
from day one.

So, Melania, thank you, honey.
Thank you.


And, Don and Vanessa,
thank you so much.

[woman] We love you, Trump!

And Ivanka, she was out,
she made seven stops today

at the polling areas.

[crowd cheering and whistling]

♪ brooding music ♪


man] Seven twenty-four, roger.

Try to maintain 2,000.

[pilot] Set to maintain 2,000.

[Cruz on TV]
...taking on Washington

and corporate welfare.

[man] All right, one over here.
One, two.

Here we go, big three.

[camera shutter clicks]

- [man] thank you.
- [Trump] Let's go and relax.

[Vanessa] Yes.

[tone dings]


[Halperin] You've done
a lot in your life.

Where does winning
the New Hampshire primary rank?

Well, it's an interesting thing.

I've had one of the most
successful television shows.

I've had The Art of the Deal
and many other books

that have been
number one best sellers.

And I've built a great company.

But I would have to say
that there's nev--

I've never seen
anything like this.

Stories all over the world.

Friends of mine calling me
from Paris, from London,

from Africa,
from all over the world

saying that it's the most
exciting thing we've ever seen.

[Halperin] There's a show

on Showtime now
about this election.

Does that surprise you
that there's

that much interest
in this election?

Oh, you're gonna do well
off of me.

- [Halperin chuckles]
- I wonder, if I weren't around,

how much you would've done.

♪ pensive music ♪

[Halperin] And this is where
Trump loves to be.

Loves to be on the plane,
loves watching TV

and seeing what people
are saying about him.

You're seeing Donald Trump

winning in every one
of these regions.

Donald Trump at--right now,

has a 19-point--
percentage point--victory.

[woman on TV]
That's how mad voters are,

and that's how much
they want change.

One thing with me,
they know me.

They've known me
for a long time.

I sort of grew up
with the American people.


You add up Facebook, Twitter,
Instagram, all of the things,

I guess I have
13, 14 million people.

With me, all I have to do
is go bing, bing, bing

and I get the word out.

I like running tables.

So we'll see what happens.

Hey, look, it's a long road,

but it's a lot shorter
than it was

two weeks ago.

[indistinct radio chatter]

♪ pensive music continues ♪


[elevator beeps]

♪ soft pensive music ♪

[indistinct chatter]

George, you want us
to switch, maybe?

[Bernie Sanders] What is that?
I've never seen it before.

[man] Sound recorder.

[Heilemann] You and Donald Trump
are very different guys,

but you're both--
it seems to me,

some number of people
who like you

and some number of people
who like him

have a similar
kind of disposition,

which is,
"The system is fucked up,

and I want to see..."

They allow you to say it
on this television network?

[stammering] Well,
if they have to bleep me,

- they'll bleep me.
- All right.

Are you cognizant
of the notion that there are

some number of people
out there in the world

who are actually
sitting there saying,

"Either Bernie Sanders
or Donald Trump.

I don't know.
One or the other"?

There are many.
We know that, yes, absolutely.

- To me...
- Given how different you are,

you would think it would be
impossible for that to exist.

But I think, you see,
what a lot of the media

and the establishment folks

who sit around in D.C. and talk
to each other don't know--

'cause they make a lot of money

and they-they're hanging around
the cocktail parties...

♪ pensive music ♪

[Sanders] People
in this country are hurting.
People are angry.

Got husbands and wives
struggling economically.

They are angry, and they have
a reason to be angry.

And what we are trying
to do is say,

"All right, if you're angry,

let's get angry
at the right people.

Don't get angry
at your Latino friends

or Muslims.

Get angry at the people
who caused the problem."

I consider him to be

a very dangerous human being

who is doing enormous harm
to this country.

And also, as you have
heard me say once or twice,

um, you know, I think
we need a media

that allows us to focus
on the real issues

facing the American people,

rather than looking
at campaigns as a sport

or as a soap opera.

- [tires screech]
- Whoo!

♪ rousing music ♪



Donald Trump,
he's an outsider.

I read his book.

And I just like everything
he's got to say.

He-he's smart.
He knows what he's doing.

You know, like he says,
we need to win.

When ev--go to Walmart,
everything you see,

made in China,

Well, that--
how's that helping us?

How's that helping us?
It's not.

[man] Whoo!

- Whoo!
- Whoo!

[man] He's entertaining.
He's fun to watch.

Like, you talk
to most people about

watch a rally or anything,
and they're just like, "Yeah."

But you hear Donald Trump's
coming to Clemson...

- [woman] Yeah.
- ...everybody goes nuts.


Trump creates an energy
around the election

that nobody's ever done, like,
in the history of the election.

I mean, every day, you see
something on-on Twitter

about Donald Trump
tweeting at somebody.

nd, I mean,
e grew up with The Apprentice.

I mean, I remember
watching that TV show.

Like, that's when he had me,
'cause, you know,

trying to be CEO one day.

So, you know,

that's why I have
respect for him.

He's awesome.

[crowd cheering]


[crowd booing]

[Trump] Ah, get him out.

I love the old days.

You know what they used to do
to guys like that?

They'd be carried out
on a stretcher, folks.

I'd like to punch him
in the face, I'll tell ya.

[crowd cheering]

[man] Donald Trump has crossed
the line in a number of places,

but it doesn't seem
to have damaged him.

[woman] You know, I think
he's been Teflon so far.

[Trump] You have to brand
people a certain way

when they're your opponents.

Like "liddle."
L-I-D-D-L-E, liddle.

Liddle, liddle Marco.

I have never, ever met a person

that lies more than Ted Cruz.

I think he's a basket case.

Can you imagine Jeb
negotiating with China?

- [tweet chirping]
- Can you imagine?

[woman] Donald Trump's picking
on all these other contenders

and hoping to take them down
one by one.


♪ somber brooding music ♪

[Jeb Bush] ...nation safer
and stronger and freer.

I firmly believe
the American people must

entrust this office
to someone

who understands that
whoever holds it is a servant,

not the master.

Someone who will commit
to that service

with honor and decency.

[crowd chanting]
Trump! Trump! Trump!

[Rose] Try to get
to the raw, real stuff.

Interesting characters doing

interesting things
with high stakes.

That's what we have every night
here at this table.

- That's correct.
- Yeah.


One take.

And six take.

We'll be right back.

[man] Um, John, could you
scooch to your, uh, left?

Here, hold this for me.

- Here's what makes you happy?
- [man] Yes.

Do you want me further left
or is this okay?

[man] Uh, yeah,
further's better.

You guys are actually in
the shot back there in the wide.


[Heilemann] Someone who could
destroy the foundation...

[man] Can you still
get your shot?

[Halperin] The Republican Party
is in full freak-out mode.

You're only seeing
two percent of it now.

Ninety-eight percent of it's
happening behind the scenes.

Trump sweeps on Super Tuesday,
you're gonna see

a freak-out unparalleled.
in our careers. Unparalleled.

And the 98% of what's happening
behind the scenes is what?

Emails, phone calls,
meetings, discussions,

uh, agonizing
at home alone at night

about what this will mean
for the Republican brand,

the Republicans majorities
in Congress...

- And the future of the party!
- And the future of the party.

What it means to be a Republican
in the 21st century.

[McKinnon] Yeah, they feel like
the house has been

burned down to its foundation.

Has the establishment simply
been too little, too late?

Did they slowly wake up
to Donald Trump and say,

"Oh, my God,
he could be our nominee"?

[wind whooshing]

♪ rousing dramatic music ♪


[woman] A huge night
for Donald Trump,

winning seven states.

[man] Big wins
from Alabama to Vermont.

[woman] Does this now
make him unstoppable?

[cheers and applause]

Thank you very much.
Thank you.


Donald Trump's victory
could mean

the end of the Republican Party
as we know it.


[bird squawking]

omney] Hi, how you guys doing?

[woman] Hi. Good, how are you?

- [Romney] Good. Hi.
- [man] How are you?

[Romney] Good. How are you?

Hi, good to meet you.

- Good to meet you.
- Hi. Thanks.

Hey, guys, how you doing?

Good to see you.
Hi, how are you?

- [man] How you doing?
- [Romney] Good.

Good to see you.

I'm afraid there's probably
not gonna be enough room

- for this crew here.
- Don't say that.

- [groaning]
- [Romney] I apologize.

[man over speaker] Will you
please join me in welcoming

Governor Mitt Romney.

[cheers and applause]

[Romney] Thank you.

I'm not here to announce
my candidacy for office.

[scattered boos]

And I'm not going to endorse
a candidate today.

Instead I'd like
to offer my perspective

on the nominating process
in my party.

- [laughs]
- Back in 19...

That's Romney-speak for

"I'm about to beat
the living shit out of someone."

[Romney] And let me
put it very plainly.

Donald Trump is a phony,
a fraud.

His promises are as worthless

as a degree
from Trump University.

[cheers and applause]

eilemann] I've been doing this
r, you know, 25 years.

The idea of a national
political party's

most recent nominee
to stand up and give a speech

devoted to attacking
the front-runner

of the current election
is off the hook.

He inherited his business.
He didn't create it.

Dishonesty, the bullying,

the absurd
third grade theatrics.

He's playing the members

of the American public
for suckers.

He gets a free ride
to the White House,

and all we get
is a lousy hat.

♪ brooding dramatic music ♪

Romney] I understand the anger
Americans feel today.

We want to bring America
back to the people!

[Romney] Mr. Trump
is directing our anger

for less than noble purposes.

This is the very brand
of anger

that has led other nations
into the abyss.

John Adams wrote this:


democracy never lasts long.

There never was
a democracy yet

that did not
commit suicide."

[Heilemann] The Republican

and the candidates who
represented the establishment,

they've looked up
and they've said,

"Oh, my God,
this is really, actually,

potentially happening."

Now they've all kind of
come to the realization

that, "Oh, shit,
we should've tried

to take this guy out
months ago.

It might be too late.
But it might not be too late."

Given the current
delegate selection process,

that means that I vote
for Marco Rubio in Florida

and for John Kasich in Ohio
and for Ted Cruz

or whichever one
of the other two contenders

has the best chance of beating
Mr. Trump in a given state.

The Stop Trump forces
basically have two weeks.

They have from now into--
until Ohio and Florida.

If they can't stop him
between now and then,

they can't stop him.

♪ ambient music ♪

At the end of the day,
it's getting down

to kind of Florida and Ohio.

[man] Do you support
this idea that

to stop Trump, the best
course of action for voters

is pick whichever candidate
is strongest in any state,

just from a delegate standpoint?

I mean, that was
sort of Mitt Romney's...

What kind of a question
is that? A good question.

- Tricky question, okay.
- [chuckling]

But I gave you the answer.

I'm gonna spend
a lot of time in Ohio

and I'll bet Mr. Rubio's gonna
spend a lot of time in Florida.

- That's it.
- [Rubio] A voter in Ohio

that doesn't want
Donald Trump to win Ohio

may very well conclude

that the best way
to stop him in Ohio

is to vote for John Kasich,
and I respect that.

The only one
who has a chance to beat

Donald Trump in Florida
is me.

But if you want to stop
Donald Trump in Florida,

any vote but a vote for me
is a vote for Donald Trump.

All right, guys.

[Cruz] You know,
there are a lot of people

who like Marco Rubio,
who like John Kasich.

They're both good, honorable
men whom I respect,

but neither one of them
has any plausible path

to the nomination.

It's becoming abundantly clear,

if you want to defeat
Donald Trump,

our campaign is the only one
who can do it.

All right, thank you, everyone.

[reporters all talking at once]

♪ pensive music ♪

[police radio chatter]

[crowd commotion]

eilemann] It's chaos out here.

On a snowy debate night
in Detroit,

madness takes its toll.


They're trying to stop Trump.
So where will they stop him?

Will they stop him
with TV ads?

Will they stop him in, uh,
some caucuses on Saturday?

Most likely,
they're gonna stop him

in the Fox Theatre.


[Heilemann] And the truth is,
there's no other time.

This is the time,
this is the moment

if they're gonna get it done.


[cheers and whistling]

[Baier] Senator Rubio,
three weeks ago, you said,

"I don't do
the personal attacks

because I think it's beneath
the office that I'm seeking

but also because I don't
want to embarrass my kids."

But in the past week,

you've mocked
Mr. Trump's tan;

you've made fun
of his spelling;

you called him a con artist;
you suggested he wet himself.

- [crowd booing]
- So what happened?

[Rubio] Yeah, you know, Bret,
let me say something.

If there's anyone
who's ever deserved

to be attacked that way,
it's been Donald Trump

for the way he's treated people
for the last campaign.

- Rubio!
- Whoo!

[Rubio] But let's be honest,
too, about all this.

The media has given
these personal attacks

an incredible amount
of coverage.

Let's start talking again
about the issues

that matter to this country.

I'm ready to do that starting
right here, right now, tonight.

Mr. Trump, your response?

[crowd cheering]

[Trump] I have to say this.
I have to say this.

He hit my hands.

He referred to my hands,

if they're small,
something else must be small.

I guarantee you,
there's no problem.

I guarantee.

[laughter and commotion]

[man] Good.

Speed, speed.

[text message whooshes]


And my guess is,
knowing America,

they probably like Donald Trump
talking about his penis

is my guess, given our--
given our country.

[Halperin] If the establishment
looked at this debate

as, like, one of the last
chances to derail Trump,

they haven't stopped him yet.

♪ brooding music ♪

Heilemann] At a campaign rally

in Fayetteville,
North Carolina,

one of the Donald supporters
in the audience

coldcocked a protester.

[crowd commotion]

[Halperin] These don't happen
at other candidates' events.

The mood in these crowds

is-is something
that I have not seen

in doing this
for the past 25 years.

I don't think
you've ever seen it

at a presidential campaign

And it happens at almost
every Trump event.

It's disturbing and weird.

[Halperin] His attitude
and the campaign's attitude

is way too cavalier about it.


[woman] ...talked directly
to his supporters.

Uh, so we're gonna find out
from Dr. Carson

why he specifically
wanted to endorse Donald Trump.

We did ask about...

Uh, you know, the media,

they're very skillful at
painting people certain ways.

And it may not be
who that person is at all.

They're two different
Donald Trumps.

There's the one
you see on the stage,

and there's the one
who's very cerebral,

sits there, and considers
things very carefully.

You can have a very good
conversation with him.

And that's the Donald Trump
that you're gonna

start seeing more and more of.

[camera shutters clicking]

[Trump] Okay. Yes?

No, it's-it's-it's politics.
And it's fact.

Let-let me just tell you.

We've had some violent
people as protesters.

You know, they're not just
people saying, "Oh..."

These are people that punch.

And-and the particular one
when I said,

"I'd like to bang him,"

he was swinging;
he was hitting people;

and the audience hit back.

And that's what we need
a little bit more of.

[camera shutters clicking]

All right, a couple of more
and we'll get out of here.

[reporters all talking at once]

♪ dark music ♪

[indistinct commotion]

[together] It is our duty
to fight for our freedom!

Get 'em out.

Get 'em out of here.

Young, spoiled kids.

[men chanting]
Stop the hate!

Stop the hate!

[indistinct commotion]

♪ tense music ♪

[crowd chanting]
We gonna be all right!

We gonna be all right!

[man] There are hundreds,

maybe even thousands
of protesters on hand.

[crowd chanting] We want Trump!
We want Trump! We want Trump!

[crowd chanting]
We gonna be all right!

We gonna be all right!

[man] The security
does not have a handle

on the situation here.

[crowd chanting]
We gonna be all right!

We gonna be all right!

Tonight's rally will be
postponed until another day.

[crowd cheering]

Thank you very much
for your attendance.

Please go in peace.

[crowd chanting] We stopped
Trump! We stopped Trump!

♪ tense music builds ♪


man] This is becoming violent.

There is pushing
and shoving going on

inside this arena.

It is total chaos.


[helicopter rotors whirring]

[man] Donald Trump joins me.
I'm now live on the phone.

Mr. Trump, do you believe
that you have done anything

to create a tone
where this kind of violence

would be encouraged?

[man] Do you re--
you regret saying

any of those things
about punching protesters,

sending them out on stretchers?

[indistinct commotion]

♪ ambient music ♪

[crowd cheering]


Donald Trump has created
a toxic environment.

[crowd chanting]

[Sanders] Donald Trump
has got to be loud and clear

and tell his supporters
that violence at rallies

is not what America is about
and to end it.

[crowd chanting]

[Cruz] And, you know, as we
campaign, we have protesters.

But unlike Donald Trump,
I don't ask people

in the audience
to punch them in the face.

Trump] I will call up Carrier,
he president.

'Cause I have to do it myself.
I know it's not--

[crowd commotion]

[crowd chanting]
Trump! Trump! Trump!

And to think I had
such an easy life.

What do I need this for, right?

[crowd chanting]

[Rubio] Realize that,
win or lose,

there are people out there

that see what I'm doing
and follow it as a role model.

And I can't imagine an election

more consequential
than this one.

We're not just choosing
what political party wins.

We're choosing
what it means to be

a conservative
in the 21st century.

♪ somber music ♪


Why wouldn't you dedicate
yourself to public service?

Somebody with strong views

and somebody
with the kind of views

that are maybe
a little bit unpopular--

which may be right
but may be unpopular--

wouldn't necessarily
have a chance

of getting elected
against somebody with

no great brain
but a big smile.

And that's a sad commentary
for the political process.

[King] Donald Trump
is sounding more like

a politician these days
than America's most

grandiose and controversial

They can presume
whatever they want.

I have no intention
of running for president,

but I'd like the point
to get across

that we have a great country,

but it's not gonna be
great for long

if we're gonna continue
to lose $200 billion a year.

You're gonna get
into the early '90s,

1990, 1991, and
the whole thing's gonna blow.

[Stone] Here's
the fundamental question.

Is the pop culture
in this country

more influential now
than its institutions?

♪ brooding music ♪

Voters are fed up
with both parties.

They're looking
for new choices.

And if the American people
are presented

a viable, different choice,

they may just take it.

[dogs howling]

[Halperin] Mr. Stone?

Gentlemen, how are you?
Good to see you, sir.

- Nice to see you.
- This is an incredible place.

- Come on in.
- Let's go in.

- [Halperin] And what is this?
- [Stone] This is the bunker.

- [Halperin] The bunker.
- [Heilemann] The bunker.

[Stone] This is the--
this is the Stone Zone.

oh, my God.

♪ lively pensive music ♪


[Halperin] Roger Stone
is an American original.

In some ways,
larger than life.

[Heilemann] Larger than life
and darker than night.

[Stone] Nixon.

Seventy-two campaign.

You were involved
in that campaign.

[Stone] Yes, I was
the youngest member

of The Committee to Re-Elect
the President staff.

and-and, famously,

you were engaged
in various dirty tricks

or what people would call
dirty tricks--


Roger was, for decades,

the equivalent of Karl Rove

to Donald Trump.

Trump brought in
Corey Lewandowski.

Corey and Roger clashed.

[Heilemann] Roger was exiled.
[Halperin] Roger was exiled.

[Halperin] May I pick this up?
Is that all right?

[Stone] Yes, you certainly may.

[Halperin] Um, it says,

"'Try me' feature on back."

[Heilemann] Probably
on the back of the doll.

[doll] I have no choice
but to tell you, you're fired.

[Stone] The next president
of the United States.

[doll] You're fired.

Is it the case now that you're--
you are not speaking to him?

- No, we speak occasionally.
- [Halperin] You do.

[Heilemann] When you say
"occasionally," you mean

you speak to him, like,
with what frequency?

- I'm curious, like daily?
- We're--we're on--

- We're on friendly terms.
- Hourly?

From time to time.

♪ ambient tone ♪

[Heilemann] You'd ac--accept
the notion of politics

as basically like
a fight for survival, right?

It's a context, but yes.

Right, right, right.

- Kill or be killed.
- Yes.

And Trump's a brawler.

I mean, there's nothing

There'll be no Marquess
de Queensberry rules here.

He had an incredible
ability to,

at every phase of the race,
when someone has seemed to be

the threat that he
was worried about...

[Stone] Yes.

- To find the one element...
- [Stone] Yes.

[Heilemann] ...of their psyche,
distill it to a single thing.

"Jeb Bush is low-energy."
"Liddle Marco."

- Whatever it is.
- [Stone] Yes. Yes.

And just pummel,
pummel that person.

Yeah, 'cause he's used
the same kind--

he's used the exact same,

technique in business.

Look, this whole thing's
a high-wire act.

That's why it's so interesting.

That's why people
are tuning in.

'Cause it's genuine.
It's not predetermined.

Everything he's saying
isn't pre-tested.

So, uh, yeah, it's a--
you know, he's like--

it's like, you know,
dealing with live ammunition.

[seagulls squawking]

[man] Passengers ran in panic

after a bomb exploded
in the departures area

of Brussels international
airport Tuesday morning.

[man] Suicide bombers
struck that location.

And authorities are digging
for whatever possible

terror connections
they may have.

[man] These are the men

Belgian prosecutors
say were responsible...

[Halperin] National security's
gonna be a big issue.

You and Hillary Clinton
are both

way ahead in delegates now,
so let's say

it's a general election
between the two of you.

She was the Secretary of State,
nation's chief diplomat.

You're a businessman
and-and hosted a TV show.

How do you win that argument

at a time of national
security crisis?

I think we'll win it
because I think people

will see I'm much more
competent than she is.

But how do you prove
to people--

I think I'm much smarter
than she is.

I think I'm much more
competent than she is.

[Heilemann] When'd you learn
about what happened in Brussels?

How did--like,
just what happened?

- Like, what was that--
- [Trump] I received a call.

And then I turned on
the television.

- [Halperin] Like, 5 a.m.?
- Uh, pretty early, maybe six.

Your friend--your friend
knows to call you that early.

- Eh.
- That's a good friend.

They know I'm not
a big sleeper.

- [Halperin] Yeah. [chuckles]
- And I saw what happened.

And I turned on the television,
saw what happened.

Said, "Here we go."
Here we go.

Trump] Come on,
let's walk over.

[Heilemann] Okay.

♪ pensive music ♪


[Halperin] You got the call
from your friend this morning.

You already were scheduled
to do a bunch

of morning show interviews
by phone.

Did you consult anybody
about what to say?

- No.
- Did you talk to anybody--no?

No, I don't have
to consult.

Look, I say it from my heart
and my brain.

- Right.
- It's not just heart.

It's heart and brain.
And that's what I do.

So you just say
what you want to say?

I say what I think
is appropriate.

[Halperin] Who are you
thinking about more these days:

Cruz and Kasich
or Clinton?

- [Trump] Clinton.
- [Halperin] Clinton.

You know, I think I'm gonna do
very well against, uh,

I call them the leftovers.


And I think
I'm gonna do very well.

And we'll see what happens.

You think she's afraid
of you?

The last person she wants
to run against is me.

But do you think she's--

And I know that from her people.
I know that for a fact.

The last person
she wants to run against.

What are her people
doing talking to you

- about that?
- They tell me--

[Halperin] Do you remember
the last time

you talked to Hillary
or Bill Clinton?

[Trump] A long time ago.

And you got
mutual friends?

Oh, I have people.
You know, I grew up in New York.

- Yeah.
- And they were in New York.

But it's been a long time.

[Heilemann] Just throw your mind
back for a second, all right?

You invited them
to your wedding.

- [Heilemann] Right? Okay.
- [Trump] Mm-hmm.

[Heilemann] Uh, is-is that--
were you guys actually--

did you feel like, at that
time, you were actually friends

and friendly, or was that just
all kind of make-believe?

[Trump] I have been considered
a world-class businessman.

- I'm all over the world.
- Right.

I will invite important people
to my wedding

because oftentimes
you need those people.

When you're doing deals,
when you're doing deals

in other countries
and you need approvals

from this country
to do deals in other countries,

it's good to have relationships.

So there was no warmth
between you then?

- But you--
- Even then, you weren't old--

you're not--if you weren't
friendly then...

Eh, friendly.
A little bit friendly.

- It was just--
- They were nice. I was nice.

- But it's business.
- Right.

You know, the old thing,
the old story.

It's not personal.
It's just business.

That's a mafia saying,
but, you know.

- It's all right.
- That's all right?

Yeah, it happens to be true.

You had "low-energy Jeb."
You had "liddle Marco."

You got "lyin' Ted." What are
you gonna say for Hillary?

Well, I have a name for her,
but I'm not gonna use it yet.

- Oh, come on! Come on!
- You got--you know what it is?

You know what it is?
Give us a hint.

[Trump] We have plenty.
We knocked out plenty.

Is it-is it "something" Hillary?

At least one.

[bird chirping]

How long do you think
it'll be, Mr. President,

before there's
a first husband?

[Bill Clinton] Not long.

Not long.
I think there'll be a--

[clears throat] A woman
will be elected president

probably in my lifetime.

I certainly--I hope that a woman
will have a chance to run.

[Gore] Would you raise
your right hand, please?

[McKinnon] Hillary Clinton's
march to the presidency

has been going on for decades.

Former senator.

[Biden] Madam Secretary,
please raise your right hand.

[McKinnon] She's a former
Secretary of State.

♪ rousing pensive music ♪

There has never been

any man or woman

more qualified
for this office

than Hillary Clinton.

[Clinton] The stakes
in this election

just keep getting
higher and higher,

while the rhetoric
on the other side

keeps getting lower and lower.

[crowd booing]

[McKinnon] She's probably
weathered more attacks

than any candidate in
the history of U.S. politics.

She's been burned
by the press a lot.

It's understandable
why she and her campaign

would be protective
and reluctant

to open up more.

You know,
I think she's got skin

probably as thick
as a rhinoceros at this point.

There's not a lot
of new things you can throw

at Hillary Clinton
that she hasn't seen.

Although Donald Trump
might be the first.

[indistinct chatter]

[Halperin] Today,
as we sit here, do you think

most likely Donald Trump will be
the Republican nominee?

- [Podesta] Yes.
- [Mook] Yes.

[Palmieri] Yes.

[Halperin] Tell me,
like, an anecdote or a moment

where you went from
"no" to "maybe."

When he attacked McCain.

A mere mortal would--
could not have survived that.

Well, that's what I was
gonna say, was it the attack--

The attack.
Doubling down on it.

- Right.
- And...

- And then...
- ...rising.

A week later, when it was not
the beginning of the end,

I was like, "Oh.
This is something different."


[Halperin] Because
it showed he had balls?

It showed that he was
not subject to the normal rules?

[Podesta] Yes.

[Palmieri] Not subject
to the normal--yeah.

I think,
on the Republican side,

he, uh, has been

vexing to them

in being able
to control the debate.


Do you think
he could do that

in a general election
against you?

- Why?
- [Podesta] That-that will be--

Our job will be to make sure
that doesn't happen.

But why would it be harder for
him to control it against you?

Well, I think he now
has higher unfavorabilities

than virtually any other
likely nominee in history.

Statistic-statistically true,
but again,

John-John made the argument,
which is think is correct,

which he has frustrated
his rivals...

[Podesta] Absolutely. getting
a lot of coverage.

The Republicans
didn't figure that out.

[Heilemann] Is he suitable

to be commander in chief?

What do you think?

Do you--well, do you guys--

What do you think?

You're an o-o-observer.

You've watched what
a president actually does.

I think I have faith
in the American people

to make a decision about who's
fit to be commander in chief.

[Halperin] Do you think
he might be more shrewd

than you give him credit for

or used to give him credit for?

This is what is dangerous
in politics

is when we focus
on the process

and not on the substance.

You can call it shrewd.
You can call it brilliant.

I don't care what you call it

and I don't care
how "brilliant" it is.

It's really bad!

And I think there's
a point at which, you know,

the-the-the race
is gonna come into relief.

You're gonna have
two candidates.

And the voters
are gonna get serious.

And it won't be
a game anymore.

[man chuckles]

[woman] Ted Cruz suspended his
campaign last night after...

[Cruz] Everything
in Donald's world...

[woman] ...losing to Trump
by double digits

in the Indiana primary.

[Cruz] about
a narcissist at a level

I don't think
this country's ever seen.

[Kasich] Look, this country
has never been great

when we fight with one another.

♪ somber music ♪


[woman] After
a contentious primary,

Donald Trump is under pressure
to bring his party together.

[woman] The question
for Donald Trump

is whether he can leave
this convention

with at least having
an energized Republican base.

If he can't, it'll be
much harder for him

to really compete
against Hillary Clinton.

♪ suspenseful music ♪


[woman] Let us commence the call
of the roll of the states.

[Ryan] What do you say
that we unify this party

at this crucial moment
when unity is everything?


[man] The great state of
Alabama is proud

to cast 36 votes
for the next president,

Donald J. Trump!

[crowd chanting]
We want Trump! We want Trump!

We want Trump! We want Trump!

[woman] California,
that is 100%

rock-solid pro-Trump.

[man] And 11 votes
for my friend

and the next president
of the United States,

Donald J. Trump!

[crowd cheering]

[Trump Jr.]
I have the incredible honor

to watch what
my father has done

in creating this movement--
because it's not

a campaign anymore,
it's a movement.

And it is my honor

to be able to throw
Donald Trump

over the top
in the delegate count tonight

with 89 delegates.

Congratulations, Dad!
We love you!

[crowd chanting]
Trump! Trump! Trump! Trump!

♪ upbeat atmospheric music ♪


[Ryan] I formally declare
Donald J. Trump

and Michael R. Pence
the Republican nominees

for president
and vice president

of these United States.

[crowd cheering]

[indistinct chatter]

[man over speaker]
...and unify South Carolina...

Great job, man, great!

Thank you.

Thank you.
It was awesome.

- [man] Great job.
- [Trump Jr.] Thank you guys.

- I am so proud!
- Everything went well?

Good to see you. It went well.
I'm so proud of you.

- I'll see you tonight.
- We'll see you in a little bit.

[Halperin] A bunch
of these people who now say

they're never Trump
are gonna be Trump.

They're gonna be Trump
in August

or September, maybe October,

maybe even some of them
in November.

And I'm getting
that feeling here tonight.

They're either gonna be
for Trump,

or they're not gonna be
in the Republican Party.

[man] Yeah.

'Cause it's his
Republican Party now.

[Heilemann] Oh, come on,
that's ridiculous.

There's still dozens of people
walking around here saying...

There are.
There are.

..."I'm not for him."

But here's the reality
that's setting in.

Roll call's happened. It's done.
There's, like, no more...

Yeah, I know he's the nominee,
Mark, I get that.

I get that, but there--
the fact is,

there are still, like, many--

people you've worked for
who wouldn't come here

- under any scenario.
- [McKinnon] Oh, I know.

There's a reason
John McCain's not here.

[McKinnon] We don't
disagree with that.

There's a reason
George W. Bush is not here.

There's a reason
that your friends

from the Bush White House
are walking around here saying

it's the most depressing
night of their lives.

- Yes. I don't--
- So, like, so--

let's not pretend like
everyone's now

suddenly like, "Oh, it's
all great, it's all good."

But people are feeling it.
This is our nominee.

♪ tense music ♪

You guys are all--you guys
are higher than I am right now.



[Halperin] I believe from--
my one person told me that

Cru--Ted Cruz is going
to surprise-endorse Trump

at the convention tonight
in his speech.

I asked Kellyanne
to confirm it.

- And I said I cannot.
- She declined.

She declined with her mouth.

Kellyanne, your eyes
right now are confirming it.

What are you talking--
what are you--

Like, why-why play
these games?

There's no way for me--I'm not
in the position to confirm that.


[Cruz] If you love
our country

and love your children as much
as I know that you do...

[man] Come on!
Say it!

Say it, Ted!

[crowd cheering]

Stand and speak
and vote your conscience.

[crowd booing]

[Cruz] Vote for candidates
up and down the ticket

who you trust
to defend our freedom

and to be faithful
to the Constitution.

Come on, Ted!

[crowd shouting]

Come on, Ted!

[crowd chanting]
Trump! Trump! Trump!

Trump! Trump! Trump!
Trump! Trump! Trump!


We will unite the party.

And God bless
the United States of America.

[amplifier feedback whines]

[man] We are live
at the Republican Convention

in Cleveland, and another
night and another wow!

[man] We haven't seen
anything like this before.

[woman] We have not.

Ladies and gentlemen,
this was, uh--

wow, that was some discord.

[man] Security escorting
Cruz's wife, Heidi,

out of the arena.

[man] What's your message
to Senator Cruz supporters

who heard their candidate
not endorse Donald Trump?

No--yeah, what's
their campaign message?

I-I'm sure you already
answered this, but...

[woman] That's a pretty big
smile, sir.

[Heilemann] Wow, that's
a pretty big smile there, Paul.

- [woman] Big smile.
- I'm smiling with him.

[Heilemann] We're reading
your body language, though.

[Halperin] I'm smiling,
but which is it?

Did you foster that or not?

Did that play the way
you wanted it to?

Look, I mean, I think

the delegates
were very disappointed.

♪ ominous music ♪

I still don't actually--
don't know what happened.

[indistinct chatter]


[crowd cheering]

[crowd chanting]

[crowd cheering]

[Trump] When I take

the oath of office
next year,

I will restore

law and order
to our country.

[crowd cheering]

I am your voice!

Hillary Clinton's message

is that things
will never change,

never ever.

My message is that

things have to change,

and they have to change
right now.

[crowd cheering]

God bless you, and good night.
I love you.

[crowd cheering]


[plane engine roars]

I think the convention
was a tremendous success.

There was love in that room,
I'll tell you what.

There was tremendous love
in the room.

Uh, you look at the unity.

I mean, take a look
at Ted Cruz.

He got booed off the stage.

I've never seen
anything like it.

- To tweak him?
- Yeah.

I would never do a thing
like that.

- But yes.
- [Halperin] Yeah, yeah, so...

- Well, I understand television.
- [Halperin] Yeah.

But nobody's a great producer

'cause there's always
an element of luck.

[Halperin] Right,

I think this:

I walk in,
and the arena went crazy.

[Halperin] Right.

Because there's great unity
in the Republican Party,

and people don't know it.

Had I not walked in,

I think that audience would have
ripped him off the stage.

You know, this "Never Trump"
was-was fiction.

That was in somebody's mind,

mostly the media's mind.
It never had a chance.

No, I-I think it's gonna be
a very boring convention.

♪ ambient music ♪


[crowd cheering]

[man] In an electric night
here at the DNC,

the crowd seems more unified...

[Clinton] ...with the bigotry
and the bombast.

America is great

because America is good.

[woman] Hillary Clinton
makes history

becoming the first woman
U.S. presidential nominee ever,

shattering a new glass ceiling.

But can she break through
the public's image of her?

[man] Hillary Clinton has had
a difficult relationship

with the truth.

Perhaps not more than
conventional politicians,

but there now is
30 years of baggage.


[woman] Republican presidential
nominee Donald Trump

hired Stephen Bannon
of Breitbart News as CEO.

[man] But Bannon has a special
zeal for the Clintons.

Breitbart News has taken
every available shot

to complicate her candidacy...

[traffic honking]

[buzzer sounds]

The mailbox says,

"Fox News, Stone"
right here.

This is it.

[Stone] I have an excellent
rapport with Steve Bannon.

[Halperin] Yeah.

[Stone] And Bannon
is my kind of guy.

He's a bomb thrower.

He thinks outside the box.

If Donald Trump runs
a conventional

Republican campaign,
he will lose.

[Halperin] Right.

What is Steve Bannon
doing in the campaign?

- Laying low.
- Yeah.

He never worked
on a campaign, right?

No, but, uh, John Mitchell
never ran a campaign either,

but he elected
Richard Nixon president.

I've never seen the voters
this angry or this sour

- or this distrustful.
- Right.

What's different
about this cycle is,

they've caught on to the role
of the mainstream media,

echoing, magnifying,
and distorting,

uh, facts on behalf of
the political establishment.

So just because
something's on TV now--

CNN, CBS, whatever--

they don't necessarily
believe it.

Bannon, he brings, uh,

a much better sense
of the new media

and the importance
of the new media.

Uh, and he knows the ent--
the entire Clinton oeuvre

in terms of research.


- You have three, uh, debates.
- Right.

He could come at her

Will one of her husband's
rape victims be in the audience?

Is that a possibility?

Are you just throwing that
out there, or is that a...

Just a--well, I mean,

I don't know that
that's going to happen.

- Yeah.
- But--but it certainly could.

I mean, the worst thing
in politics

than being wrong
is to be worried.


[helicopter rotors whirring]

[man] The stakes could not
be any higher for this debate.

Ninety minutes that
could change the race.

[woman] New poll shows
Hillary Clinton

and Donald Trump
in a near dead heat.

Clinton is leading
by just two percentage points

in the latest...

[crowd shouting]

Welcome to the media circus!

I'm a metaphor!

[instrumental version
of "Thriller" playing]

- Ready?
- [man] Yeah, I'm ready.



[scanner beeps]


How are you?

[Kelly] There's a beer
trailer out there.

I don't know--
did you see that?

It's--I--people are

at the presidential debate.

Who gets drunk
at the presidential debate?

Everybody but us, I guess.

It's like a tailgate
out there.

What are we,
like, a couple of losers?

It's hard to imagine
that nothing's gonna happen

in this debate, right,
that people are gonna go,

"Oh, that was a dud."

But it could happen,
I guess.

I don't know.

Here's the reason why
I question that just a little.

When I asked him
that first question

at the first presidential debate
Fox News hosted about the women.

You've called women
you don't like

"fat pigs," "dogs," "slobs"...

Trump thought he could
dismiss it with a laugh

about Rosie O'Donnell.

- Right.
- And I kept pressing.

And that's when he got mad.

If you don't like it,
I'm sorry.

I've been very nice to you,
although I could probably

maybe not be based on the way
you have treated me.

And I know he's been told
by everybody

to keep it together
and not let her bait him.

And Trump's not stupid.

- You know, I mean...
- Yeah, yeah.

He wants this.
He likes to win.

So that's if it could be...

So if he--if he's convinced

that that's the way to win,

I mean, I think he can keep
his powder dry for 90 minutes.

And if he does,
it might be boring.

- Either way, we're gonna win...
- Yeah.

...'cause boring
or electric...

There's gonna be
a lot of people watching.

- Everyone's gonna watch.
- You're right. Yes.

He's gonna give us
a ton of stuff to talk about.

And if it's electric,
so much the better

'cause that'll keep us
fueled for weeks.

[Trump] We have so many things

that we have to do better,

We have no leadership.

And honestly, that starts
with Secretary Clinton.

I have a feeling,
by the end of this evening,

I'm to be blamed for everything
that's ever happened.

Why not?

Why not? Yeah.

- [laughter]
- [Clinton] Why not?

[Trump] I've been
all over the place.

You decided to stay home,
and that's okay.

I think Donald
just criticized me

for preparing for this debate.

And you know what else
I prepared for?

I prepared to be president,

and I think that's
a good thing.


[Holt] Mr. Trump, this year,
Secretary Clinton became

the first woman nominated
for president by a major party.

Earlier this month, you said
she doesn't have

"a presidential look."
What did you mean by that?

[Trump] Uh,
she doesn't have the look.

She doesn't have
the stamina.

[Clinton] This is a man
who has called women

"pigs," "slobs," and "dogs."

One of the worst things
he said was about

a woman in a beauty contest.

He called this woman
"Miss Piggy,"

then he called her
"Miss Housekeeping"

because she was Latina.

- Donald, she has a name.
- [Trump] Where did you find--

- Her name is Alicia Machado.
- Where did you find this?

- Where did you find it?
- And she has become

a U.S. citizen
and you can bet...

- [Trump] Oh, really?
- ...she's going to vote

- this November.
- [Trump] Okay, good.

[Holt] All right, well,
that is going to do it for us.

That concludes our debate
for this evening.


That debate did not want
for electric moments.

That's for sure, Bret.

There's no--no one,
I believe, will judge this

as having been a loss
for Hillary Clinton.

This was clearly Hillary Clinton
on the attack,

issue after issue after issue.

She certainly
looked more presidential.

She showed much more
of a mastery of issues.

I think everybody
pretty much agrees

that Trump was just awful.

[Halperin] Follow me.

♪ pensive music ♪

Mr. Trump.

Mr. Trump.
How are you, sir?

on getting through

your first
presidential debate.

- I liked it.
- What'd you--what'd you think?

I thought it was great.
I really enjoyed it.

It's about making America
great again.

So I think it came out
very good, Mark.

Of the objectives you had
going in tonight,

which ones did you achieve?

Which ones did you fail
to achieve?

I think I achieved.

I mean, I'm looking
at all the online polls,

and we're doing very well.

We're really doing well.
Um, I think I achieved.

Now people are talking about
how you did, how she did.

What do you think the proper
role for the media is now

at this point,
and what will the role be?

All I wish the media would be
is fair.

Uh, you know, everyone's
saying I won the debate.

But hones--
I just want them to be fair.

That includes you.

[reporters all talking at once]

Hey, John,
throw it back to you.

Uh, Donald Trump continues
to walk the line,

and we're gonna go
chase after him.

[woman] Did he say, "Everyone
is saying I won the debate"?

[man] Well done, brother.

[crowd cheering]

an] Let me ask you a question.

Who thinks Trump won
the debate last night?

[crowd cheering]

♪ brooding music ♪


Last night was very exciting.

Winning the debate against
crooked Hillary Clinton,

big league.

Big league.

[crowd cheering]

The single weapon
that she's got is the media.

Without the mainstream media,

she wouldn't even
be here, folks.

That I can tell you.
She wouldn't even be here.

[crowd cheering]


[Tapper] There is
some breaking news right now.

David Fahrenthold
of The Washington Post

got his hands on a tape,
uh, from 2005

of Donald Trump.

[Trump] Took her out
furniture shopping.

She wanted to get
some furniture.

I said, "I'll show you where
they have some nice furniture."

[man] Whoa.

[man] That's huge news here.

[man laughing]

[Bush] Whatever you want.

[Bush snickering]

The Trump campaign
was already in free fall.

Ever since the last debate,
it's been

one self-inflicted wound
after another.

But this really takes it
to another level.

The worst October surprise

that any campaign
has ever suffered.

♪ pensive rousing music ♪


[man] I think there's
an acknowledgement

inside the Trump campaign
that they don't know

how their candidate
can survive this.

[man] They're in DEFCON 2
right now.

I've never said
I'm a perfect person

nor pretended to be
someone that I'm not.

I've said and done things
I regret.

And the words released today

on this more-than-a-decade-old
video are one of them.

Anyone who knows me

knows these words
don't reflect who I am.

I said it,
I was wrong,

and I apologize.

I've said some foolish things,

but there's a big difference

between the words
and actions of other people.

Bill Clinton
has actually abused women

and Hillary has
bullied, attacked,

shamed, and intimidated
his victims.

That wasn't an apology.

That was like
the Pee-wee Herman defense:

"I know you are,
but what am I?"

[man] The party right now
is "flipping out."

[woman] A growing list
of congressional Republicans

withdrawing support.

Some are demanding that Trump
drop out of the race.

♪ dark music ♪

[woman] He's indicated
in the past,

"If the Republican Party
is not with me,

then they're against me."

And his base of support
is with him on that.

[man] Go ahead!

[crowd chanting]

[man] On Twitter,
Trump said,

"I will never
drop out of the race.

Will never let
my supporters down."

[instrument blowing]

[woman] Whoo!
Donald J. Trump!

[crowd shouting]

We will discuss this more
in the coming days.

See you at the debate
on Sunday.


[indistinct chatter]

[McKinnon] Are we--
are we rolling?

[Blitzer] Just getting in
some videotape.

Uh, look at this.

These are women who have
made very strong accusations

against Bill Clinton.

There you see in the middle
of your screen Donald Trump...

Mr. Trump may have
said some bad words,

but Bill Clinton raped me.

And Hillary Clinton
threatened me.

[camera shutters clicking]

Donald Trump has just
put his finger

on the nuclear button
and pressed it.

♪ brooding string music ♪


[Cooper] Mr. Trump,
you bragged that

you have
sexually assaulted women.

Do you understand that?

No, I didn't say that at all.

I don't think you
understood what was said.

This was locker room talk.

Uh, I'm not proud of it.

I apologized to my family.

I have tremendous respect
for women.

[Cooper] Have you ever
done those things?

And women have respect for me.

And I will tell you--
no, I have not.


If guys are gonna say
they don't talk like that,

they're lying.

Did you ever get a group
of women ar--together?

They're worse than the men.


[man] He had the power.
He has the prestige.

Why wouldn't you take
a little advantage?


I'm not voting for the pope.

I don't care
what he said 11 years ago.


[man] Claims that he

touched two women
in the past...

[woman] And his hands
started going up my skirt.

[woman] He just came
strolling right in.

Some girls were topless.
Other girls were naked.

[woman] A ninth woman
is now accusing Donald Trump

of sexual misconduct.

He gave me another embrace
and did

touch my vagina
through my underwear.

These vicious claims

about me

are totally
and absolutely false.

[crowd cheering]

They're taking
these unsubstantiated--

no witnesses--putting them on
the front pages of newspapers!

They're outright lies.

[crowd cheering]

[woman] She's got
the whole media behind her.

Everything's a setup.

[woman] This is about
the liberal media

trying to keep Trump
from becoming president.

Anyone who challenges
their control

is deemed a sexist,

a racist, a xenophobe.

Things that come out of Donald
Trump's mouth are disgusting.

They will attack you.

Deplorable and awful.

They will slander you.

- Creepy.
- They will lie.

Donald Trump is going
to lose this election.

- Lie.
- The race is over.

They're horrible,
horrible liars.

[crowd cheering]

It's a rigged system.
It's a rigged election.

It's not coincidence
that these attacks

come at the exact same moment

as WikiLeaks
releases documents

exposing the massive
international corruption

of the Clinton machine.

[crowd chanting] Lock her up!
Lock her up! Lock her up!

Lock her up! Lock her up!

So true.

♪ dramatic music ♪

[woman] The Clinton
presidential campaign

is facing more problems
over emails today...

[woman] A steady stream
of leaked emails

keep coming from WikiLeaks.

U.S. intelligence officials say

the hacks came from Russia.

[Clinton] What's really
important about WikiLeaks

is that the Russian government

has engaged in espionage
against Americans

in an effort
to influence our election.

Look, Putin...
[Chris Wallace] Oh, but-wait--

...from everything I see,

has no respect
for this person.

Well, that's because
he'd rather have a puppet

as president of
the United States.

No puppet.
No puppet.

- And it's pretty clear--
- You're the puppet.

[Clinton] It's pretty clear
you won't admit that...

[Trump] No, you're the puppet.
..the Russians have engaged

in cyber attacks against
the United States of America

because he has a very clear
favorite in this race.

[Wallace] Mr. Trump,
you have been warning

at rallies recently
that this election is rigged.

Do you make the commitment
that you will absolutely--

sir--that you will
absolutely accept

the result of this election?

I will look at it at the time.

- [man groans]
- [Wallace] Are you saying

you're not prepared now
to commit to that principle?

What I'm saying is that
I will tell you at the time.

I'll keep you in suspense.

[Nicole Wallace] It is
a disqualifying comment to say

you will not accept the results
of American democracy,

the beacon of democracy
the world over.

Lights-out moment for him.

This is very sad night
for the country.

Um, you can't polish this turd.

[indistinct chatter]

There's Kellyanne.

How's it going?

Oh, great!
How are you?

Was that the answer he was

supposed to give
on that question?

He had a lot
of great answers tonight.

That one that everybody's
paying attention to.

- When--and he said--
- Why-why--how does that happen?

I'm just curious,
'cause I'm not a reporter.

- [sighs]
- How does it happen that

everybody hears
the same 90-minute debate

and everybody obsesses
over the one thing he says--

Because we've never had
a major party nominee

who says, "I may not
accept the results."

Well, sure you did.
You had Al Gore.

That was after the election.

Well, but that's--maybe
that's his entire point, Mark.

But earlier today, you,
Mike Pence, and Ivanka Trump

all said, "Of course
he'll accept the results."

So that's different
than the answer he gave.

We all said
absent widespread irregularities

or evidence of fraud or abuse.

[indistinct chatter]

And rolling now.

♪ pensive music ♪

We all agreed he had
to do something big tonight.

Does anybody here
think he did that?


I think, if anything,
just the opposite.

The WikiLeaks disclosures
from the Podesta emails

have been going around now
for over a week.

And we still don't know--

and there's mixed opinion
about this--

the people who are
releasing these,

trying to win the election
for Trump

or they're just trying
to create chaos.

Yeah, chaos and discord.

The irony is, if the election
is undermined,

at this point, the chances
are more--are better

that it's by Russia
than by anybody else.


♪ soft suspenseful music ♪


[Heilemann] So Donald Trump,
last night,

he-he brought up
a number of things

that have been revealed
by the WikiLeaks,

uh, email hacking.

Yes. Yes.

You, Roger Stone, have said,

I believe, on multiple
occasions publicly,

that you have back channel
to Assange.

- Correct?
- Mm-hmm.

We just happen to have
a mutual friend who--

You "happen to have"
a mutual friend?

Yes, who supported Assange

and has some connection to him.

But how aware of all this
is Trump?

Have you discussed
WikiLeaks with him?

- I have not.
- Not once?

- Not once.
- Never?

In any of your private
conversations, not once?

- Not once. Not once.
- You have no idea.

So the U.S.
intelligence community

"is confident that
the Russian government

directed the recent
compromises of emails

from U.S. persons
and institutions,

including from U.S.
political organizations."

- So I--
- Show us the proof.

You don't believe it?

No, I don't believe it.

Why does Donald Trump

suck up to Putin so much?

Because he favors a period--

Why does he do--
why does he do that?

Because he favors
a period of détente.

If Nixon and Brezhnev
can make a deal,

then perhaps Trump
and Putin can make a deal

You-your view
is that American voters,

when Trump sucks up to Putin,

they think, "Yeah, we like that.
That's good."

I think they like
peace over war.

So Trump is not only
the candidate

of the silent majority,
the forgotten Americans,

the candidate of law and order,

but he is also
the candidate of peace.

So at this moment,
it's October 20th...


What needs to happen for
Donald Trump to be president?

I would concede
that, in my belief,

Mrs. Clinton is probably
slightly ahead.

But Trump is Trump.

He's good in the clutch,

and he could still
eke this out

under the right sequence
of events.

Trump may need some brakes,

but to say that he's out of it?

Did you say over?

Right. Right.

Nothing's over
till we say it is.


This has been excellent.

You'll edit out
all the good shit.

Come on, dude, you think
I'm in charge of that?

Some other liberal is.

For you, Roger,

fuckin' Attila the Hun
is liberal.


♪ dramatic music ♪

[Blitzer] We've got
some breaking news

I want to bring
to our viewers right now.

A new possible investigation
by the FBI

into Hillary Clinton's emails.

[man] In a letter
to members of Congress,

Director Comey said the FBI
has learned

of the existence of emails
that appear

to be pertinent
to the investigation.

[camera shutters clicking]

The director himself has said

he doesn't know
whether the emails

referenced in his letter

are significant or not.

[Halperin] He has--
this is not the way

the Justice Department
is supposed to work.

This is a case of great
public interest, I get that.

But you're not supposed to be

trying cases in public
like this.

So irresponsible.

[Halperin] Eleven days
before the election.

[Heilemann] So irresponsible.

The question to me now...


Just this morning,
I was saying that

it would take some
catastrophic external event

to change the trajectory
of this race.

This could be it.

[man] Republicans are going
to bludgeon her with this

over the next 11 days.

[Trump] As you know,

the FBI has reopened
its investigation

into Hillary Clinton.

[crowd cheering]

[crowd chanting]

[chanting continues]

♪ ambient music ♪

[Halperin] This is the last
Friday before Election Day.

And here we are
in the inner sanctum.

This it the Trump
campaign headquarters

in Trump Tower.

Roll on fuckin' everything.

Look, the rooms are named
after Trump properties.

♪ pensive music ♪

This seems more like
a quiet Manhattan law firm

than it does like
a bustling campaign.

Oh, look at this.

This is awesome.

This is a space
I've not been in.

I don't think very many
people have been in.

This is the entrance
to the residence of Trump Tower

so this is where
Mr. Trump comes in his lobby,

maybe gets the mail.

- Thank you, man.
- Hey, thank you very much.

- It's awesome.
- Hey, good to see you.

Really appreciate it.
Thank you.

Campaigns, they're always
gonna act upbeat.

The key is body language.

Frankly, everyone I talk to
in the Trump campaign

has a big smile on their face.

Is that 'cause
they have momentum

and they feel on the upswing?

Is it because they're bluffing?

I don't know.

So Robby Mook,
your counterpart...


...says they're gonna win;
they can't lose.

We can't lose Florida.
We can't lose North Carolina.

- You say you're winning...
- We're winning.'re gonna win.
What's a boy to think?

I'm not sure that
they saw this coming.

Her not being able to get
Barack Obama-like levels

in these blue states.

Plus the fact that she is
under a cloud of corruption

and there's no evidence
that Americans who already

find her to be dishonest
and untrustworthy

are going to just
look past that.

You, uh, for the last week
have had the luxury

of mostly giving
your candidate good news.

- Yes.
- Is your job to keep

his spirits up
or to tell him the truth?

If you learn bad
early vote numbers or you get

a bad poll back, is your
job to tell him the truth...

- Always.
- ...or to keep his spirits up?

- Always.
- Always.

Well, both, I mean,
all of the above.

Does your-your campaign manager

do a good job, objectively?

- She's doing a great job.
- Does she give you bad news?

If something's bad,
will she say,

"I got to be honest with you"?

She only gives me--
only gives me good news.


[man] Early polling shows
that this FBI disclosure

hasn't moved the race
in any significant way so far.

[woman] Clinton leading Trump
in all seven national polls.

[man] Advantage Clinton.
A steep hill for Donald Trump.

[man] Clinton's chances
of winning are 84%

versus Trump's 16%.

[man] She's got
an electoral college lock.

She is choking him out.

[Clinton] So I got to ask you,
are you ready?

[crowd cheering]

How many of you've
already voted?

[crowd cheering]

My final Sunday morning
television appearance

before Election Day
on Face the Nation.

Make some final sense
out of this

fucked-up, distressing,
depressing election.

[indistinct chatter]

[man] Are we rolling?

[man] David, there's
a film crew in here.

[Ignatius] I noticed that.

- Guys.
- [man] It's all very meta.

Two days to go.

[Heilemann] Who's gonna win
on Tuesday?

Clinton or Trump?

Uh, I...

Uh, Clinton narrowly.

"Clinton narrowly."

I still think Clinton.

Clinton narrowly.

Clinton modestly.

- As opposed to narrowly?
- [chuckling]

Is modestly--is modestly
bigger than narrowly or...

It's-it's-it's larger.
It's more like--

Did I say "biggerly"?
Think I said "biggerly."

Amy, how happy are you
this is gonna be over?

Or are you on the "I wish this
campaign would go on forever"?

[Walter] I never wish
a campaign would go on forever.

Two weeks from now,

we're gonna be
on to something else.

- [Ignatius] Yeah, I'm not...
- [Heilemann] Really?

[Ignatius] Donald Trump isn't
gonna be on to something else.

We're likely to have,
I'd guess,

a-a populist Republican Party
for a while.

Okay, I don't think it's just
a populist Republican Party.

I think it's a Republican Party
specifically focused on,

uh, white identity
as the organizing--

as the organizing thing.

[Heilemann] Having Barack Obama
as president for eight years

exposed the degree to which
there was submerged racism.

There was a whole bunch of stuff
that was seething out there

like in a David Lynch movie.

Like, just a--
like, the--like--

- like bugs in the grass, right?
- Right, right.

And all of a sudden it's kind of
now brought up to the surface.

My expectation is that this is
actually just the beginning

of a-a-a more seismic
change in our politics.

Sort of like "we are not even
on to the main course yet."

- Right, exactly.
- Fabulous. Great.

[man] And mic up, cue.

We're back now
with our politics panel.

John Heilemann, what's going on
in the race right now?

- [laughs]
- What is going on?

Well, it's almost over, John.

[Dickerson] One of the
challenges of this election

is that the smart people think
that they know what's going on,

and then Donald Trump has been
extremely successful

doing his thing.

So maybe Donald Trump
just knows something better.

Um, well, if that's true, um,

a lot of us are gonna have to,
uh, really check

a lot of our preconceptions
at the door.

But it's still the case that,
uh, Hillary Clinton

has never been behind
in this race.

[crowd cheering]

♪ upbeat ethereal music ♪


[Clinton] Years from today,

when your kids and grandkids
ask what you did in 2016,

when everything
was on the line,

I want you
to be able to say

you voted for an inclusive,

open-minded country.

Because I do believe
we are stronger together.

[crowd cheering]

♪ pensive music ♪


[crowd booing]

[crowd cheering]

[crowd chanting]
Trump! Trump! Trump!

Trump! Trump! Trump!
Trump! Trump! Trump!

[crowd cheering]

[Trump] It all began for me
in New Hampshire,

the first state we won.

We are just one day away

from the change
you've been waiting for

your entire life.

[crowd cheering]

[airplane P.A. system beeping]

[indistinct radio chatter]

♪ ambient music ♪

[woman] You're looking
at Westchester County Airport

in White Plains, New York.

Hillary Clinton
coming home to vote.

This is Election Day.

♪ brooding music ♪


[siren wailing]

[man on TV]
Right now, it is very, very,

very early results,
Hillary Clinton running up

the percentages that she needs
in Florida...

[Halperin] We're in that
classic bullshit period

where election returns
would suggest to you

Trump's doing even or well.

And the exit poll data
shows that Clinton's won it.

So insiders know that
and are basically like,

"All right, who's gonna be
in the Clinton cabinet?"

And, "What time's Clinton
gonna give her victory speech?"

And, "Will Trump concede?"

And, you know, on the air,
it's all just like Kabuki

of, "Oh, look,
Trump's up 7,800 votes."

She's right now, according
to the exit polls, ahead

in every battleground state
that she's contesting.

- Yeah.
- We're headed towards--

If she wins Florida,
that's that.

- Well, right.
- You know?

Eighteen months of, like,
extraordinary buildup

with one projection.

Mr. Trump, sayonara.

♪ atmospheric music ♪

[Heilemann] So welcome
to the Jacob Javits Center.

[Halperin] AKA Hillaryland.

[Clinton on TV]
Now is our chance

to beat the historical odds

and give the American people

the health security they need.

We worked really hard.
We weren't successful.

Which really disappointed...

This is, like, mind-blowing.

[indistinct chatter]

[Heilemann] Very futuristic.

Literally, it's like
nothing I've ever seen

on election night.

This is like a show of force.

If she wins, it's gonna be
a metaphor for the fact

that she and her team

outworked, outspent
Donald J. Trump.

[man] This is the
electoral college map.

The colored states
you see now...

[crowd commotion]



I guess I never
really thought about it.

- I just know how hard it is...
- Right.

- ...for women to win.
- Since you never expected

to see one in your lifetime,
it's fair to say

that you are seeing one
sooner than you expected.

I hope that's right.


don't let him fuck with you.

Stay here and talk to me.

[Fallon] So everybody's paying
attention to the glass ceiling

and all the symbolic value
of that.

- [Heilemann] Yeah.
- [Fallon] And that's true.

But the other thing that
we're pointing to is the stage

that is shaped like the map
of the United States of America.

And the symbolic purpose
of that is--

and this is something you're
gonna hear in her remarks--

that she wants to be
a president for everybody.

We realize, even if she has
a decisive victory tonight,

that the country's
gonna remain polarized

and the big challenge
facing her is gonna be

how to try to heal the divide.

And so starting tonight,

wants to start
to reach out

to even those Trump supporters
that didn't vote for her.

♪ pensive music ♪


[indistinct chatter]

So this is kind--I mean, I know
he's done events here before,

but it's so weird
for an election night party

for the guy that
has huge rallies

to end on a note like this,

I know.
Well, I think...

[McKinnon] This looks more like
an annual convention

of osteopaths than it does
an election night celebration.

[man on TV] North Carolina,
Florida, right away.

First in the polls...

[Blitzer on TV] Key race alert
right now.

[dramatic music on TV]

Key race alerts!

[Blitzer on TV] All right,
let's take a look.

Let's start with Florida.

Right now, Donald Trump
is ahead impressively

with 91% of the vote.

In Ohio, Donald Trump
also has the lead

of more than 52,000
with 39% of the vote in.

Eighteen-point threshold.

It's too close to call.

[Blitzer on TV] In Virginia
right now, Donald Trump

still has an impressive lead...

The suggestion earlier was

if she won Florida,
it'd be a really early night.

And now it's Trump
with 92% of the vote in

and Trump ahead
by 130,000 votes.

She could still...

[Blitzer on TV]
...votes outstanding...

♪ ambient music ♪


[Schumer on TV] I got to watch
my oldest daughter,

Jessica, get married
to the man of her dreams...


[Halperin] So I'm over
at the Clinton headquarters.

And the atmosphere here
in the last 45 minutes

has just pancaked.

[Schumer on TV] I guess
what I'm saying is this.

I believe that she will win.

[Halperin] They're playing
Schumer giving some speech,

and people are like,
"Please, we don't need

to hear about how much
you love Coney Island.

What the fuck's going on
in Broward County?"

[man on TV]
And this is encouraging you,

if you're the Trump campaign,

If Donald Trump keeps it
that close...

[Halperin] My sense is that
in the last 45 minutes or so,

the energy's...

- Air--yeah, absolutely.
- Air out of the room, right.


Have you reached any of the
Clinton people about Florida?

♪ rousing pensive music ♪

[man on TV] A couple things to
point out. First of all we talk
about this

college, non-college...

[crowd cheering]

[man] Donald Trump has just
won the state of Ohio.

[man] No Republican has
won the White House without

winning the state of
Ohio. Donald Trump, the GOP
nominee has just...

[man on TV] Sure, it's only a
couple hundred in this county,

maybe 1,000 there,
maybe 1,500 there...

[Halperin] They've got
the audio up

on John King at CNN

they're starved for information.

That is something
if that's 100%.

There's not more votes to be
gained by Hillary Clinton...

If she--if he wins Florida,
it's an earthquake.

I would say
at this moment


pretty much
every liberal I know

is comprehensively
freaking out.

[siren wailing]

Think that's fair to say.

[Blitzer] CNN can now project

that the state of Colorado
will go to Hillary Clinton.

Remember, you need 270
to win the White House.

I keep saying that...


Yeah, even with Iowa.

She's got--
she's got a chance still.

If she can block him
in Michigan, Wisconsin...

For Trump?
All right.

Fox is giving North Carolina
to Trump, so...

really about Michigan,

and New Hampshire right now.

Michigan-Wisconsin thing
is key.

'Cause she's behind by--
I mean, it seems like bo--

those are probably
gonna go the same direction.

Let me know, okay?

Thank you.

♪ ambient music ♪

My guests tonight are

executive producers
and reporters

from Showtime's political
documentary series The Circus.

Please welcome Mark Halperin
and John Heilemann.

[cheers and applause]

[man] Yeah, there you go.

[Colbert] Yeah.

Uh, what is happening out there?

I haven't looked at anything
in, like, the last half hour.

What's going on?

Um, my sense is that
this audience will not

particularly like this,
but he's now the front-runner.

[crowd moans]

Uh, if Trump wins,
how about bursting into tears

and screaming "fuck"
for the next 45 minutes?

[laughter and applause]

What did you want to say?


- Yeah.
- Uhh, Donald Trump

has taken the state of Florida.

- [crowd groans]
- Okay, so that's been called.

He is--he is now on--
he is now

on the doorstep
of 270 electoral votes.


Uh, that's
a horrifying prospect.

I can't put--
uh, I cannot put a-a-a--

I can't put a happy face
on that.

And-and that's my job.

[soft laughter]

If you did an MRI
of the country,

I think you'd--
terminal grievance

and anger and populist ire

is the--is the-the-the thing
that afflicts

both sides--Democrat--on
the far left and the far right.

And now we are
where we are, which is--

of the Civil War,

World War II,

and including 9/11,
this may be

the most cataclysmic event
the country's ever seen.

Um...[chuckles nervously]


♪ ominous music ♪

- [woman] Happy to march.
- We'll be right back

after this message from Calgon.

[indistinct chatter]

[traffic honking]

[Halperin] Here's an update
from Clinton aides.

She's still at the hotel,
watching results.

She was planning to wait
and then at some point

go over to the Javits Center
and give her victory speech.

[short sigh] I mean, you know,
she's in there now.

They're--I'm sure they're
telling her the bad news

and they're trying
to figure out a path.

They're claiming that
there's more vote out

at some of these places.

Can you imagine
if she has to give

a concession speech tonight,
what she's gonna say?

You know, she said America is
better than this and all that.

I mean, she's gonna have to say
this is what America wants.

Literally, there's never
been anything

that's happened like this.

I, um...

you know, often thunk of Trump
as like Berlusconi,

the prime minister of Italy.

You know, incredibly outrageous,

um, c-conduct and personality.

But with all due respect
to the Italians,

like, being prime minister
of Italy

is not the same as being
president of the United States.

[siren wailing]

I texted a Trump aide.

[indistinct shouting]

Said, "Where are you?"

Her response was,
"Alongside the next POTUS."

[man] That's right!
That's right!

[siren wailing]

[crowd chanting]
Drain the swamp!

Drain the swamp!
Drain the swamp!

Drain the swamp!
Drain the swamp!

Yeah, um,

I'm-I'm on 55th and 6th,

trying to get
towards the hotel.

They've got a credential for me.

They've got it inside.

[crowd commotion]

[man] Uh, "impatient,"
at this point

would be the operative
word of the night.

There has not been
a single person

who has left the Trump
victory night headquarters,

is what they think
it now is.

Uh, they're particularly
interested in

when Pennsylvania
might get called,

uh, because after...

♪ somber music ♪

[man] Two thousand twelve, uh,
Barack Obama won
quite "handedly."

This is steel country;
this is coal country.

And look at Donald Trump

We just got word that

Pennsylvania has been called
for Donald Trump.


By any rational calculation,
it's over for her.

[Cooper on TV]
...lot of different ways.

David Axelrod,
what did everybody get wrong?

I mean, the polls
were just wrong.

[Alesci on TV] I know.
I think the Comey letter

was extremely hurtful to her.

It's, uh--
it's frankly astounding...

[man on TV] Think of what
an incredibly

nontraditional campaign
this was.

It was Donald Trump
with a microphone, a hat,

and an airplane.

- Twitter account.
- And a Twitter account.

[woman on TV] And a lot
of media exposure.

man on TV] An extraordinary...

[woman on TV] And the media...

I'm gonna go on TV tomorrow
and have to say,

"Hey, man, I was wrong."

I got to figure out
why I was wrong.

We all got to figure it out.


This was the year of

bipartisan, ecumenical
populist rage.

And it was enough that

the figure of Donald Trump
was able to marshal

that populist outrage and...

issue a hostile takeover
of the Republican Party

on the back of widespread

outrage and anger
at Democrats, at Republicans,

at Washington, at Wall Street,
at Fortune

at the mass media,
at every major establishment,

institution in the country.

People are fucking pissed off.

And their attitude was,
"You know what?

That guy is risky,

but doing the same thing
over and over again

for another 20 years that
we did for the last 20 years

and didn't fix anything,

that's risky too.

And I'm willing
to take these risks

and just roll
a fucking stick of dynamite

into Washington, D.C.,
and blow the motherfucker up

and see where the rubble falls."

[woman on TV] He gives
those voters hope.

They may not believe that
he can really change anything,

but he is their
hope and change candidate.

[King] Shouldn't he
be congratulated

or somebody just say what
he's done is extraordinary?

The fact that it started
with 17 candidates.

If you were a supporter
of Donald Trump

or he wasn't your candidate,
what he's accomplished

is extraordinary.

[Jones] People have
talked about a miracle.

Uh, I'm hearing
about a nightmare.

Uh, it's hard to be a parent
tonight for a lot of us.

Uh, you tell your kids,
don't be a bully.

You tell your kids,
don't be a bigot.

And then you have this outcome
and you have people

putting children to bed

and they--
they're afraid of breakfast.

This was a rebellion
against the elites.

True, but it was
also something else.

We haven't talked about race.

This was a whitelash.

This was a whitelash
against a changing country.

It was a whitelash against
a black president, in part.

And that's the part
where the pain comes.

[siren wailing]

[indistinct chatter]

I have a right
to my own body.

Do you have a daughter?
Do you have a wife?

[man] The alt-right is here!

We are here to stay!

We are opposed
to neoconservatism.

- Yeah!
- We are opposed to globalism.


We want nationalism
for all people.


These are
the fucking assholes...

- White people have just...
- Exactly. much of a right to exist.

- I'm a veteran!
- Yes, what do you--

- I'm 50% disabled!
- What do you identify as?

- You identify as American? Yes?
- Okay?

Of course I identify
as American!

And we shouldn't be
against each other by you

- telling me all this rhetoric.
- If--no--excuse me.

[crowd cheering]

♪ minimal string music ♪


I mean, is-it's-it's stunning.

And people are
gonna be stunned tomorrow

and the next day
and the next day

and for a good long time.

It's-it's, uh--
it was--it was hard to cover

'cause the country's
so bitterly divided.

It was hard to cover

because so much
of what happened was

the conventional wisdom.

Tonight and this election
will be in the history books.

And it will never be
fully explained.

[crowd cheering]

[crowd chanting]


Thank you very much, everybody.

[scattered cheers]

Sorry to keep you waiting.
Complicated business.


This was tough.

♪ somber music ♪

This political stuff is nasty
and it's tough.

[crowd cheering]


- [Halperin] I think we're done.
- [Heilemann] Well--

Scott says we're done.

- [Heilemann] We wake up today--
- Scott says we're done.

[indistinct chatter]

[Halperin] What are you doing?
- Cleaning


[camera shutters clicking]

[Obama] I want
to emphasize to you,

uh, Mr. President-elect,

that, uh, we

now are gonna, uh,

want to do everything we can
to help you succeed,

because if you succeed,

then the country succeeds.

Thank you, sir.

[reporters all talking at once]

♪ dramatic orchestration ♪