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Watch the full first presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

Watch the full first presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump


JUDY WOODRUFF: Good evening. I’m Judy Woodruff. GWEN IFILL: And I’m Gwen Ifill. Welcome to this “PBS NewsHour” special coverage
of the first debate between the two major-party presidential candidates, Hillary Clinton and
Donald Trump. The stage is set at Hofstra University on
Long Island, New York. With the election 43 days away the race tightening,
a lot is on the line tonight, Judy. JUDY WOODRUFF: It certainly is, Gwen, and
given that this is the first time these two have faced each other one on one. Lester Holt of NBC News will be moderating. Joining us at the table are our regular contributors,
syndicated columnist Mark Shields, New York Times columnist David Brooks, and from The
Cook Political Report, Amy Walter. We welcome all you have here for the next
two hours. Amy, let’s start with you. What are you looking for? AMY WALTER, The Cook Political Report: Each
of these candidates has an enthusiasm gap problem within their own party. So, they have got to get their partisans fired
up. For Hillary Clinton, it’s young people. For Donald Trump, he’s got to get those white
college-educated voters back into the Republican fold, where they have been. And then they have got to get those voters,
both of them, who are torn, don’t like either choice they have in front of them, to pick
them. GWEN IFILL: Mark Shields, what would you — surprise
you the most of what these candidates might or might not do tonight? MARK SHIELDS: Does Donald Trump dare to be
boring? Does he come out sedated/presidential? And can Hillary Clinton, who is a marvelous
and superior deliverer of information, make an emotional connection with American voters? JUDY WOODRUFF: David, what are you on the
edge of your seat looking for? DAVID BROOKS: We have been around each other
too long. I wrote down emotional connection. (LAUGHTER) MARK SHIELDS: Did you? DAVID BROOKS: This is not a cognitive night. This is not philosophy. This is not grand strategy. It’s moment of intimacy, that unscripted moment
when the unconscious is revealed that will be replayed on YouTube over and over and over
again. And so it’s just, is he commanding or is he
cruel? Is she relatable and does she seem calmly
smart? And it’s whether people get that vibe, the
first they vibe, that will determine the night. GWEN IFILL: Is this about what they know or
who they are? AMY WALTER: Well, I think it’s mostly about
who they are. For voters at this stage of the game, they
are looking up on that dais to see who they can spend the next four years with, who they
want to invite into their homes moment after moment. Many voters say, I don’t want either one of
them in there. GWEN IFILL: A lot of them. AMY WALTER: A lot of voters are saying that. But this is the one maybe that they’re not
going to like, but they will feel comfortable enough. JUDY WOODRUFF: But, Mark, people are going
to be fact-checking this debate. They’re going to be raising questions about
whether what either one of them said was correct or not. MARK SHIELDS: No, you’re right, Judy. And if it’s what they know, it will be a short
evening… (LAUGHTER) MARK SHIELDS: … for the Republican nominee,
whose knowledge bank has been overdrawn. And I think it’s about, more than anything
else, each case, what does he know, his command of it, is he comfortable with it, and who
she is. And I think that is really the question. DAVID BROOKS: And there is the gender politics. GWEN IFILL: OK. Well, we’re turning now to Lester Holt of
NBC News. TRANSCRIPT START HOLT: Good evening from Hofstra University
in Hempstead, New York. I’m Lester Holt, anchor of “NBC Nightly News.” I want to welcome you to the first presidential
debate. The participants tonight are Donald Trump
and Hillary Clinton. This debate is sponsored by the Commission
on Presidential Debates, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization. The commission drafted tonight’s format, and
the rules have been agreed to by the campaigns. The 90-minute debate is divided into six segments,
each 15 minutes long. We’ll explore three topic areas tonight: Achieving
prosperity; America’s direction; and securing America. At the start of each segment, I will ask the
same lead-off question to both candidates, and they will each have up to two minutes
to respond. From that point until the end of the segment,
we’ll have an open discussion. The questions are mine and have not been shared
with the commission or the campaigns. The audience here in the room has agreed to
remain silent so that we can focus on what the candidates are saying. I will invite you to applaud, however, at
this moment, as we welcome the candidates: Democratic nominee for president of the United
States, Hillary Clinton, and Republican nominee for president of the United States, Donald
J. Trump. (APPLAUSE) CLINTON: How are you, Donald? (APPLAUSE) HOLT: Good luck to you. (APPLAUSE) Well, I don’t expect us to cover all the issues
of this campaign tonight, but I remind everyone, there are two more presidential debates scheduled. We are going to focus on many of the issues
that voters tell us are most important, and we’re going to press for specifics. I am honored to have this role, but this evening
belongs to the candidates and, just as important, to the American people. Candidates, we look forward to hearing you
articulate your policies and your positions, as well as your visions and your values. So, let’s begin. We’re calling this opening segment “Achieving
Prosperity.” And central to that is jobs. There are two economic realities in America
today. There’s been a record six straight years of
job growth, and new census numbers show incomes have increased at a record rate after years
of stagnation. However, income inequality remains significant,
and nearly half of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. Beginning with you, Secretary Clinton, why
are you a better choice than your opponent to create the kinds of jobs that will put
more money into the pockets of American works? CLINTON: Well, thank you, Lester, and thanks
to Hofstra for hosting us. The central question in this election is really
what kind of country we want to be and what kind of future we’ll build together. Today is my granddaughter’s second birthday,
so I think about this a lot. First, we have to build an economy that works
for everyone, not just those at the top. That means we need new jobs, good jobs, with
rising incomes. I want us to invest in you. I want us to invest in your future. That means jobs in infrastructure, in advanced
manufacturing, innovation and technology, clean, renewable energy, and small business,
because most of the new jobs will come from small business. We also have to make the economy fairer. That starts with raising the national minimum
wage and also guarantee, finally, equal pay for women’s work. CLINTON: I also want to see more companies
do profit-sharing. If you help create the profits, you should
be able to share in them, not just the executives at the top. And I want us to do more to support people
who are struggling to balance family and work. I’ve heard from so many of you about the difficult
choices you face and the stresses that you’re under. So let’s have paid family leave, earned sick
days. Let’s be sure we have affordable child care
and debt-free college. How are we going to do it? We’re going to do it by having the wealthy
pay their fair share and close the corporate loopholes. Finally, we tonight are on the stage together,
Donald Trump and I. Donald, it’s good to be with you. We’re going to have a debate where we are
talking about the important issues facing our country. You have to judge us, who can shoulder the
immense, awesome responsibilities of the presidency, who can put into action the plans that will
make your life better. I hope that I will be able to earn your vote
on November 8th. HOLT: Secretary Clinton, thank you. Mr. Trump, the same question to you. It’s about putting money — more money into
the pockets of American workers. You have up to two minutes. TRUMP: 21:08:32 Thank you, Lester. Our jobs are fleeing the country. They’re going to Mexico. They’re going to many other countries. You look at what China is doing to our country
in terms of making our product. They’re devaluing their currency, and there’s
nobody in our government to fight them. And we have a very good fight. And we have a winning fight. Because they’re using our country as a piggy
bank to rebuild China, and many other countries are doing the same thing. So we’re losing our good jobs, so many of
them. When you look at what’s happening in Mexico,
a friend of mine who builds plants said it’s the eighth wonder of the world. They’re building some of the biggest plants
anywhere in the world, some of the most sophisticated, some of the best plants. With the United States, as he said, not so
much. So Ford is leaving. You see that, their small car division leaving. Thousands of jobs leaving Michigan, leaving
Ohio. They’re all leaving. And we can’t allow it to happen anymore. As far as child care is concerned and so many
other things, I think Hillary and I agree on that. We probably disagree a little bit as to numbers
and amounts and what we’re going to do, but perhaps we’ll be talking about that later. But we have to stop our jobs from being stolen
from us. We have to stop our companies from leaving
the United States and, with it, firing all of their people. All you have to do is take a look at Carrier
air conditioning in Indianapolis. They left — fired 1,400 people. They’re going to Mexico. So many hundreds and hundreds of companies
are doing this. TRUMP: We cannot let it happen. Under my plan, I’ll be reducing taxes tremendously,
from 35 percent to 15 percent for companies, small and big businesses. That’s going to be a job creator like we haven’t
seen since Ronald Reagan. It’s going to be a beautiful thing to watch. Companies will come. They will build. They will expand. New companies will start. And I look very, very much forward to doing
it. We have to renegotiate our trade deals, and
we have to stop these countries from stealing our companies and our jobs. HOLT: Secretary Clinton, would you like to
respond? CLINTON: Well, I think that trade is an important
issue. Of course, we are 5 percent of the world’s
population; we have to trade with the other 95 percent. And we need to have smart, fair trade deals. We also, though, need to have a tax system
that rewards work and not just financial transactions. And the kind of plan that Donald has put forth
would be trickle-down economics all over again. In fact, it would be the most extreme version,
the biggest tax cuts for the top percent of the people in this country than we’ve ever
had. I call it trumped-up trickle-down, because
that’s exactly what it would be. That is not how we grow the economy. We just have a different view about what’s
best for growing the economy, how we make investments that will actually produce jobs
and rising incomes. I think we come at it from somewhat different
perspectives. I understand that. You know, Donald was very fortunate in his
life, and that’s all to his benefit. He started his business with $14 million,
borrowed from his father, and he really believes that the more you help wealthy people, the
better off we’ll be and that everything will work out from there. I don’t buy that. I have a different experience. My father was a small-businessman. He worked really hard. He printed drapery fabrics on long tables,
where he pulled out those fabrics and he went down with a silkscreen and dumped the paint
in and took the squeegee and kept going. And so what I believe is the more we can do
for the middle class, the more we can invest in you, your education, your skills, your
future, the better we will be off and the better we’ll grow. That’s the kind of economy I want us to see
again. 21:12:21 HOLT: Let me follow up with Mr. Trump, if
you can. You’ve talked about creating 25 million jobs,
and you’ve promised to bring back millions of jobs for Americans. How are you going to bring back the industries
that have left this country for cheaper labor overseas? How, specifically, are you going to tell American
manufacturers that you have to come back? TRUMP: Well, for one thing — and before we
start on that — my father gave me a very small loan in 1975, and I built it into a
company that’s worth many, many billions of dollars, with some of the greatest assets
in the world, and I say that only because that’s the kind of thinking that our country
needs. Our country’s in deep trouble. We don’t know what we’re doing when it comes
to devaluations and all of these countries all over the world, especially China. They’re the best, the best ever at it. What they’re doing to us is a very, very sad
thing. So we have to do that. We have to renegotiate our trade deals. And, Lester, they’re taking our jobs, they’re
giving incentives, they’re doing things that, frankly, we don’t do. Let me give you the example of Mexico. They have a VAT tax. We’re on a different system. When we sell into Mexico, there’s a tax. When they sell in — automatic, 16 percent,
approximately. When they sell into us, there’s no tax. It’s a defective agreement. It’s been defective for a long time, many
years, but the politicians haven’t done anything about it. Now, in all fairness to Secretary Clinton
— yes, is that OK? Good. I want you to be very happy. It’s very important to me. But in all fairness to Secretary Clinton,
when she started talking about this, it was really very recently. She’s been doing this for 30 years. And why hasn’t she made the agreements better? The NAFTA agreement is defective. Just because of the tax and many other reasons,
but just because of the fact… HOLT: Let me interrupt just a moment, but… TRUMP: Secretary Clinton and others, politicians,
should have been doing this for years, not right now, because of the fact that we’ve
created a movement. They should have been doing this for years. What’s happened to our jobs and our country
and our economy generally is — look, we owe $20 trillion. We cannot do it any longer, Lester. HOLT: 21:14:28 Back to the question, though. How do you bring back — specifically bring
back jobs, American manufacturers? How do you make them bring the jobs back? TRUMP: Well, the first thing you do is don’t
let the jobs leave. The companies are leaving. I could name, I mean, there are thousands
of them. They’re leaving, and they’re leaving in bigger
numbers than ever. And what you do is you say, fine, you want
to go to Mexico or some other country, good luck. We wish you a lot of luck. But if you think you’re going to make your
air conditioners or your cars or your cookies or whatever you make and bring them into our
country without a tax, you’re wrong. And once you say you’re going to have to tax
them coming in, and our politicians never do this, because they have special interests
and the special interests want those companies to leave, because in many cases, they own
the companies. So what I’m saying is, we can stop them from
leaving. We have to stop them from leaving. And that’s a big, big factor. HOLT: Let me let Secretary Clinton get in
here. CLINTON: 21:15:19 Well, let’s stop for a second
and remember where we were eight years ago. We had the worst financial crisis, the Great
Recession, the worst since the 1930s. That was in large part because of tax policies
that slashed taxes on the wealthy, failed to invest in the middle class, took their
eyes off of Wall Street, and created a perfect storm. In fact, Donald was one of the people who
rooted for the housing crisis. He said, back in 2006, “Gee, I hope it does
collapse, because then I can go in and buy some and make some money.” Well, it did collapse. TRUMP: 21:16:02 That’s called business, by
the way. CLINTON: Nine million people — nine million
people lost their jobs. Five million people lost their homes. And $13 trillion in family wealth was wiped
out. Now, we have come back from that abyss. And it has not been easy. So we’re now on the precipice of having a
potentially much better economy, but the last thing we need to do is to go back to the policies
that failed us in the first place. Independent experts have looked at what I’ve
proposed and looked at what Donald’s proposed, and basically they’ve said this, that if his
tax plan, which would blow up the debt by over $5 trillion and would in some instances
disadvantage middle-class families compared to the wealthy, were to go into effect, we
would lose 3.5 million jobs and maybe have another recession. They’ve looked at my plans and they’ve said,
OK, if we can do this, and I intend to get it done, we will have 10 million more new
jobs, because we will be making investments where we can grow the economy. Take clean energy. Some country is going to be the clean- energy
superpower of the 21st century. Donald thinks that climate change is a hoax
perpetrated by the Chinese. I think it’s real. TRUMP: I did not. I did not. I do not say that. CLINTON: I think science is real. TRUMP: I do not say that. CLINTON: And I think it’s important that we
grip this and deal with it, both at home and abroad. And here’s what we can do. We can deploy a half a billion more solar
panels. We can have enough clean energy to power every
home. We can build a new modern electric grid. That’s a lot of jobs; that’s a lot of new
economic activity. So I’ve tried to be very specific about what
we can and should do, and I am determined that we’re going to get the economy really
moving again, building on the progress we’ve made over the last eight years, but never
going back to what got us in trouble in the first place. HOLT: Mr. Trump? TRUMP: She talks about solar panels. We invested in a solar company, our country. That was a disaster. They lost plenty of money on that one. Now, look, I’m a great believer in all forms
of energy, but we’re putting a lot of people out of work. Our energy policies are a disaster. Our country is losing so much in terms of
energy, in terms of paying off our debt. You can’t do what you’re looking to do with
$20 trillion in debt. The Obama administration, from the time they’ve
come in, is over 230 years’ worth of debt, and he’s topped it. He’s doubled it in a course of almost eight
years, seven-and-a-half years, to be semi- exact. So I will tell you this. We have to do a much better job at keeping
our jobs. And we have to do a much better job at giving
companies incentives to build new companies or to expand, because they’re not doing it. 21:18:59 And all you have to do is look at
Michigan and look at Ohio and look at all of these places where so many of their jobs
and their companies are just leaving, they’re gone. And, Hillary, I’d just ask you this. You’ve been doing this for 30 years. Why are you just thinking about these solutions
right now? For 30 years, you’ve been doing it, and now
you’re just starting to think of solutions. CLINTON: Well, actually… TRUMP: I will bring — excuse me. I will bring back jobs. You can’t bring back jobs. CLINTON: Well, actually, I have thought about
this quite a bit. TRUMP: Yeah, for 30 years. CLINTON: And I have — well, not quite that
long. I think my husband did a pretty good job in
the 1990s. I think a lot about what worked and how we
can make it work again… TRUMP: Well, he approved NAFTA… (CROSSTALK) CLINTON: … million new jobs, a balanced
budget… TRUMP: He approved NAFTA, which is the single
worst trade deal ever approved in this country. CLINTON: Incomes went up for everybody. Manufacturing jobs went up also in the 1990s,
if we’re actually going to look at the facts. When I was in the Senate, I had a number of
trade deals that came before me, and I held them all to the same test. Will they create jobs in America? Will they raise incomes in America? And are they good for our national security? Some of them I voted for. The biggest one, a multinational one known
as CAFTA, I voted against. And because I hold the same standards as I
look at all of these trade deals. But let’s not assume that trade is the only
challenge we have in the economy. I think it is a part of it, and I’ve said
what I’m going to do. I’m going to have a special prosecutor. We’re going to enforce the trade deals we
have, and we’re going to hold people accountable. When I was secretary of state, we actually
increased American exports globally 30 percent. We increased them to China 50 percent. So I know how to really work to get new jobs
and to get exports that helped to create more new jobs. HOLT: Very quickly… TRUMP: But you haven’t done it in 30 years
or 26 years or any number you want to… CLINTON: Well, I’ve been a senator, Donald… TRUMP: You haven’t done it. You haven’t done it. CLINTON: And I have been a secretary of state… TRUMP: Excuse me. CLINTON: And I have done a lot… TRUMP: Your husband signed NAFTA, which was
one of the worst things that ever happened to the manufacturing industry. CLINTON: Well, that’s your opinion. That is your opinion. TRUMP: You go to New England, you go to Ohio,
Pennsylvania, you go anywhere you want, Secretary Clinton, and you will see devastation where
manufacture is down 30, 40, sometimes 50 percent. NAFTA is the worst trade deal maybe ever signed
anywhere, but certainly ever signed in this country. And now you want to approve Trans-Pacific
Partnership. You were totally in favor of it. Then you heard what I was saying, how bad
it is, and you said, I can’t win that debate. But you know that if you did win, you would
approve that, and that will be almost as bad as NAFTA. Nothing will ever top NAFTA. CLINTON: Well, that is just not accurate. I was against it once it was finally negotiated
and the terms were laid out. I wrote about that in… TRUMP: You called it the gold standard. (CROSSTALK) TRUMP: You called it the gold standard of
trade deals. You said it’s the finest deal you’ve ever
seen. CLINTON: No. TRUMP: And then you heard what I said about
it, and all of a sudden you were against it. CLINTON: Well, Donald, I know you live in
your own reality, but that is not the facts. The facts are — I did say I hoped it would
be a good deal, but when it was negotiated… TRUMP: Not. CLINTON: … which I was not responsible for,
I concluded it wasn’t. I wrote about that in my book… TRUMP: So is it President Obama’s fault? CLINTON: … before you even announced. TRUMP: Is it President Obama’s fault? CLINTON: Look, there are differences… TRUMP: Secretary, is it President Obama’s
fault? CLINTON: There are… TRUMP: Because he’s pushing it. CLINTON: There are different views about what’s
good for our country, our economy, and our leadership in the world. And I think it’s important to look at what
we need to do to get the economy going again. That’s why I said new jobs with rising incomes,
investments, not in more tax cuts that would add $5 trillion to the debt. TRUMP: But you have no plan. CLINTON: But in — oh, but I do. TRUMP: Secretary, you have no plan. CLINTON: In fact, I have written a book about
it. It’s called “Stronger Together.” You can pick it up tomorrow at a bookstore… TRUMP: That’s about all you’ve… (CROSSTALK) HOLT: Folks, we’re going to… CLINTON: … or at an airport near you. HOLT: We’re going to move to… CLINTON: But it’s because I see this — we
need to have strong growth, fair growth, sustained growth. We also have to look at how we help families
balance the responsibilities at home and the responsibilities at business. So we have a very robust set of plans. And people have looked at both of our plans,
have concluded that mine would create 10 million jobs and yours would lose us 3.5 million jobs,
and explode the debt which would have a recession. TRUMP: You are going to approve one of the
biggest tax cuts in history. 21:23:20 You are going to approve one of the
biggest tax increases in history. You are going to drive business out. Your regulations are a disaster, and you’re
going to increase regulations all over the place. And by the way, my tax cut is the biggest
since Ronald Reagan. I’m very proud of it. It will create tremendous numbers of new jobs. But regulations, you are going to regulate
these businesses out of existence. When I go around — Lester, I tell you this,
I’ve been all over. And when I go around, despite the tax cut,
the thing — the things that business as in people like the most is the fact that I’m
cutting regulation. You have regulations on top of regulations,
and new companies cannot form and old companies are going out of business. And you want to increase the regulations and
make them even worse. I’m going to cut regulations. I’m going to cut taxes big league, and you’re
going to raise taxes big league, end of story. HOLT: Let me get you to pause right there,
because we’re going to move into — we’re going to move into the next segment. We’re going to talk taxes… CLINTON: That can’t — that can’t be left
to stand. HOLT: Please just take 30 seconds and then
we’re going to go on. CLINTON: I kind of assumed that there would
be a lot of these charges and claims, and so… TRUMP: Facts. CLINTON: So we have taken the home page of
my website, HillaryClinton.com, and we’ve turned it into a fact-checker. So if you want to see in real-time what the
facts are, please go and take a look. Because what I have proposed… TRUMP: And take a look at mine, also, and
you’ll see. CLINTON: … would not add a penny to the
debt, and your plans would add $5 trillion to the debt. What I have proposed would cut regulations
and streamline them for small businesses. What I have proposed would be paid for by
raising taxes on the wealthy, because they have made all the gains in the economy. And I think it’s time that the wealthy and
corporations paid their fair share to support this country. HOLT: Well, you just opened the next segment. TRUMP: Well, could I just finish — I think
I… (CROSSTALK) HOLT: I’m going to give you a chance right
here… TRUMP: I think I should — you go to her website,
and you take a look at her website. HOLT: … with a new 15-minute segment… TRUMP: She’s going to raise taxes $1.3 trillion. HOLT: Mr. Trump, I’m going to… TRUMP: And look at her website. You know what? It’s no difference than this. She’s telling us how to fight ISIS. Just go to her website. She tells you how to fight ISIS on her website. I don’t think General Douglas MacArthur would
like that too much. HOLT: The next segment, we’re continuing… CLINTON: Well, at least I have a plan to fight
ISIS. HOLT: … achieving prosperity… TRUMP: No, no, you’re telling the enemy everything
you want to do. CLINTON: No, we’re not. No, we’re not. TRUMP: See, you’re telling the enemy everything
you want to do. No wonder you’ve been fighting — no wonder
you’ve been fighting ISIS your entire adult life. CLINTON: That’s a — that’s — go to the — please,
fact checkers, get to work. HOLT: OK, you are unpacking a lot here. And we’re still on the issue of achieving
prosperity. And I want to talk about taxes. The fundamental difference between the two
of you concerns the wealthy. Secretary Clinton, you’re calling for a tax
increase on the wealthiest Americans. I’d like you to further defend that. And, Mr. Trump, you’re calling for tax cuts
for the wealthy. I’d like you to defend that. And this next two-minute answer goes to you,
Mr. Trump. TRUMP: Well, I’m really calling for major
jobs, because the wealthy are going create tremendous jobs. They’re going to expand their companies. They’re going to do a tremendous job. I’m getting rid of the carried interest provision. And if you really look, it’s not a tax — it’s
really not a great thing for the wealthy. It’s a great thing for the middle class. It’s a great thing for companies to expand. And when these people are going to put billions
and billions of dollars into companies, and when they’re going to bring $2.5 trillion
back from overseas, where they can’t bring the money back, because politicians like Secretary
Clinton won’t allow them to bring the money back, because the taxes are so onerous, and
the bureaucratic red tape, so what — is so bad. So what they’re doing is they’re leaving our
country, and they’re, believe it or not, leaving because taxes are too high and because some
of them have lots of money outside of our country. And instead of bringing it back and putting
the money to work, because they can’t work out a deal to — and everybody agrees it should
be brought back. Instead of that, they’re leaving our country
to get their money, because they can’t bring their money back into our country, because
of bureaucratic red tape, because they can’t get together. Because we have — we have a president that
can’t sit them around a table and get them to approve something. And here’s the thing. Republicans and Democrats agree that this
should be done, $2.5 trillion. I happen to think it’s double that. It’s probably $5 trillion that we can’t bring
into our country, Lester. And with a little leadership, you’d get it
in here very quickly, and it could be put to use on the inner cities and lots of other
things, and it would be beautiful. But we have no leadership. And honestly, that starts with Secretary Clinton. 21:28:01 HOLT: All right. You have two minutes of the same question
to defend tax increases on the wealthiest Americans, Secretary Clinton. CLINTON: I have a feeling that by, the end
of this evening, I’m going to be blamed for everything that’s ever happened. TRUMP: Why not? CLINTON: Why not? Yeah, why not? (LAUGHTER) You know, just join the debate by saying more
crazy things. Now, let me say this, it is absolutely the
case… TRUMP: There’s nothing crazy about not letting
our companies bring their money back into their country. HOLT: This is — this is Secretary Clinton’s
two minutes, please. TRUMP: Yes. CLINTON: Yeah, well, let’s start the clock
again, Lester. We’ve looked at your tax proposals. I don’t see changes in the corporate tax rates
or the kinds of proposals you’re referring to that would cause the repatriation, bringing
back of money that’s stranded overseas. I happen to support that. TRUMP: Then you didn’t read it. CLINTON: I happen to — I happen to support
that in a way that will actually work to our benefit. But when I look at what you have proposed,
you have what is called now the 21:29:01 Trump loophole, because it would so advantage you
and the business you do. You’ve proposed an approach that has a… TRUMP: Who gave it that name? The first I’ve — who gave it that name? (CROSSTALK) HOLT: Mr. Trump, this is Secretary Clinton’s
two minutes. CLINTON: … $4 billion tax benefit for your
family. And when you look at what you are proposing… TRUMP: How much? How much for my family? CLINTON: … it is… TRUMP: Lester, how much? CLINTON: … as I said, trumped-up trickle-down. Trickle-down did not work. It got us into the mess we were in, in 2008
and 2009. Slashing taxes on the wealthy hasn’t worked. And a lot of really smart, wealthy people
know that. And they are saying, hey, we need to do more
to make the contributions we should be making to rebuild the middle class. CLINTON: I don’t think top-down works in America. I think building the middle class, investing
in the middle class, making college debt-free so more young people can get their education,
helping people refinance their — their debt from college at a lower rate. Those are the kinds of things that will really
boost the economy. Broad-based, inclusive growth is what we need
in America, not more advantages for people at the very top. HOLT: Mr. Trump, we’re… TRUMP: Typical politician. All talk, no action. Sounds good, doesn’t work. Never going to happen. Our country is suffering because people like
Secretary Clinton have made such bad decisions in terms of our jobs and in terms of what’s
going on. Now, look, we have the worst revival of an
economy since the Great Depression. And believe me: We’re in a bubble right now. And the only thing that looks good is the
stock market, but if you raise interest rates even a little bit, that’s going to come crashing
down. We are in a big, fat, ugly bubble. And we better be awfully careful. And we have a Fed that’s doing political things. This Janet Yellen of the Fed. The Fed is doing political — by keeping the
interest rates at this level. And believe me: The day Obama goes off, and
he leaves, and goes out to the golf course for the rest of his life to play golf 21:31:00,
when they raise interest rates, you’re going to see some very bad things happen, because
the Fed is not doing their job. The Fed is being more political than Secretary
Clinton. HOLT: Mr. Trump, we’re talking about the burden
that Americans have to pay, yet you have not released your tax returns. And the reason nominees have released their
returns for decades is so that voters will know if their potential president owes money
to — who he owes it to and any business conflicts. Don’t Americans have a right to know if there
are any conflicts of interest? TRUMP: I don’t mind releasing — I’m under
a routine audit. And it’ll be released. And — as soon as the audit’s finished, it
will be released. But you will learn more about Donald Trump
by going down to the federal elections, where I filed a 104-page essentially financial statement
of sorts, the forms that they have. It shows income — in fact, the income — I
just looked today — the income is filed at $694 million for this past year, $694 million. If you would have told me I was going to make
that 15 or 20 years ago, I would have been very surprised. But that’s the kind of thinking that our country
needs. When we have a country that’s doing so badly,
that’s being ripped off by every single country in the world, it’s the kind of thinking that
our country needs, because everybody — Lester, we have a trade deficit with all of the countries
that we do business with, of almost $800 billion a year. You know what that is? That means, who’s negotiating these trade
deals? We have people that are political hacks negotiating
our trade deals. HOLT: The IRS says an audit… TRUMP: Excuse me. HOLT: … of your taxes — you’re perfectly
free to release your taxes during an audit. And so the question, does the public’s right
to know outweigh your personal… TRUMP: Well, I told you, I will release them
as soon as the audit. Look, I’ve been under audit almost for 15
years. 21:33:00 I know a lot of wealthy people that
have never been audited. I said, do you get audited? I get audited almost every year. And in a way, I should be complaining. I’m not even complaining. I don’t mind it. It’s almost become a way of life. I get audited by the IRS. But other people don’t. I will say this. We have a situation in this country that has
to be taken care of. I will release my tax returns — against my
lawyer’s wishes — when she releases her 33,000 e-mails that have been deleted. As soon as she releases them, I will release. (APPLAUSE) I will release my tax returns. And that’s against — my lawyers, they say,
“Don’t do it.” I will tell you this. No — in fact, watching shows, they’re reading
the papers. Almost every lawyer says, you don’t release
your returns until the audit’s complete. When the audit’s complete, I’ll do it. But I would go against them if she releases
her e-mails. HOLT: So it’s negotiable? TRUMP: It’s not negotiable, no. Let her release the e-mails. Why did she delete 33,000… HOLT: Well, I’ll let her answer that. But let me just admonish the audience one
more time. There was an agreement. We did ask you to be silent, so it would be
helpful for us. Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: Well, I think you’ve seen another
example of bait-and- switch here. For 40 years, everyone running for president
has released their tax returns. You can go and see nearly, I think, 39, 40
years of our tax returns, but everyone has done it. We know the IRS has made clear there is no
prohibition on releasing it when you’re under audit. So you’ve got to ask yourself, why won’t he
release his tax returns? And I think there may be a couple of reasons. First, maybe he’s not as rich as he says he
is. Second, maybe he’s not as charitable as he
claims to be. CLINTON: Third, we don’t know all of his business
dealings, but we have been told through investigative reporting that he owes about $650 million
to Wall Street and foreign banks. Or maybe he doesn’t want the American people,
all of you watching tonight, to know that he’s paid nothing in federal taxes, because
the only years that anybody’s ever seen were a couple of years when he had to turn them
over to state authorities when he was trying to get a casino license, and they showed he
didn’t pay any federal income tax. 21:35:27 TRUMP: That makes me smart. CLINTON: So if he’s paid zero, that means
zero for troops, zero for vets, zero for schools or health. And I think probably he’s not all that enthusiastic
about having the rest of our country see what the real reasons are, because it must be something
really important, even terrible, that he’s trying to hide. And the financial disclosure statements, they
don’t give you the tax rate. They don’t give you all the details that tax
returns would. And it just seems to me that this is something
that the American people deserve to see. And I have no reason to believe that he’s
ever going to release his tax returns, because there’s something he’s hiding. And we’ll guess. We’ll keep guessing at what it might be that
he’s hiding. But I think the question is, were he ever
to get near the White House, what would be those conflicts? Who does he owe money to? Well, he owes you the answers to that, and
he should provide them. HOLT: He also — he also raised the issue
of your e-mails. Do you want to respond to that? CLINTON: I do. You know, I made a mistake using a private
e- mail. TRUMP: That’s for sure. CLINTON: And if I had to do it over again,
I would, obviously, do it differently. But I’m not going to make any excuses. It was a mistake, and I take responsibility
for that. HOLT: Mr. Trump? TRUMP: That was more than a mistake. That was done purposely. OK? That was not a mistake. That was done purposely. When you have your staff taking the Fifth
Amendment, taking the Fifth so they’re not prosecuted, when you have the man that set
up the illegal server taking the Fifth, I think it’s disgraceful. And believe me, this country thinks it’s — really
thinks it’s disgraceful, also. As far as my tax returns, you don’t learn
that much from tax returns. That I can tell you. You learn a lot from financial disclosure. And you should go down and take a look at
that. The other thing, I’m extremely underleveraged. The report that said $650 — which, by the
way, a lot of friends of mine that know my business say, boy, that’s really not a lot
of money. It’s not a lot of money relative to what I
had. The buildings that were in question, they
said in the same report, which was — actually, it wasn’t even a bad story, to be honest with
you, but the buildings are worth $3.9 billion. And the $650 isn’t even on that. But it’s not $650. It’s much less than that. But I could give you a list of banks, I would
— if that would help you, I would give you a list of banks. These are very fine institutions, very fine
banks. I could do that very quickly. I am very underleveraged. I have a great company. I have a tremendous income. And the reason I say that is not in a braggadocios
way. It’s because it’s about time that this country
had somebody running it that has an idea about money. When we have $20 trillion in debt, and our
country’s a mess, you know, it’s one thing to have $20 trillion in debt and our roads
are good and our bridges are good and everything’s in great shape, our airports. 21:38:25 Our airports are like from a third
world country. You land at LaGuardia, you land at Kennedy,
you land at LAX, you land at Newark, and you come in from Dubai and Qatar and you see these
incredible — you come in from China, you see these incredible airports, and you land
— we’ve become a third world country. So the worst of all things has happened. We owe $20 trillion, and we’re a mess. We haven’t even started. And we’ve spent $6 trillion in the Middle
East, according to a report that I just saw. Whether it’s 6 or 5, but it looks like it’s
6, $6 trillion in the Middle East, we could have rebuilt our country twice. And it’s really a shame. And it’s politicians like Secretary Clinton
that have caused this problem. Our country has tremendous problems. We’re a debtor nation. We’re a serious debtor nation. And we have a country that needs new roads,
new tunnels, new bridges, new airports, new schools, new hospitals. And we don’t have the money, because it’s
been squandered on so many of your ideas. HOLT: We’ll let you respond and we’ll move
on to the next segment. CLINTON: And maybe because you haven’t paid
any federal income tax for a lot of years. (APPLAUSE) And the other thing I think is important… TRUMP: It would be squandered, too, believe
me. CLINTON: … is if your — if your main claim
to be president of the United States is your business, then I think we should talk about
that. You know, your campaign manager said that
you built a lot of businesses on the backs of little guys. And, indeed, I have met a lot of the people
who were stiffed by you and your businesses, Donald. I’ve met dishwashers, painters, architects,
glass installers, marble installers, drapery installers, like my dad was, who you refused
to pay when they finished the work that you asked them to do. We have an architect in the audience who designed
one of your clubhouses at one of your golf courses. It’s a beautiful facility. It immediately was put to use. And you wouldn’t pay what the man needed to
be paid, what he was charging you to do… TRUMP: Maybe he didn’t do a good job and I
was unsatisfied with his work… CLINTON: Well, to… TRUMP: Which our country should do, too. CLINTON: Do the thousands of people that you
have stiffed over the course of your business not deserve some kind of apology from someone
who has taken their labor, taken the goods that they produced, and then refused to pay
them? 21:40 I can only say that I’m certainly relieved
that my late father never did business with you. He provided a good middle-class life for us,
but the people he worked for, he expected the bargain to be kept on both sides. And when we talk about your business, you’ve
taken business bankruptcy six times. There are a lot of great businesspeople that
have never taken bankruptcy once. You call yourself the King of Debt. You talk about leverage. You even at one time suggested that you would
try to negotiate down the national debt of the United States. TRUMP: Wrong. Wrong. CLINTON: Well, sometimes there’s not a direct
transfer of skills from business to government, but sometimes what happened in business would
be really bad for government. HOLT: Let’s let Mr. Trump… CLINTON: And we need to be very clear about
that. TRUMP: So, yeah, I think — I do think it’s
time. Look, it’s all words, it’s all sound bites. I built an unbelievable company. Some of the greatest assets anywhere in the
world, real estate assets anywhere in the world, beyond the United States, in Europe,
lots of different places. It’s an unbelievable company. But on occasion, four times, we used certain
laws that are there. And when Secretary Clinton talks about people
that didn’t get paid, first of all, they did get paid a lot, but taken advantage of the
laws of the nation. Now, if you want to change the laws, you’ve
been there a long time, change the laws. But I take advantage of the laws of the nation
because I’m running a company. My obligation right now is to do well for
myself, my family, my employees, for my companies. And that’s what I do. But what she doesn’t say is that tens of thousands
of people that are unbelievably happy and that love me. I’ll give you an example. We’re just opening up on Pennsylvania Avenue
right next to the White House, so if I don’t get there one way, I’m going to get to Pennsylvania
Avenue another. But we’re opening the Old Post Office. Under budget, ahead of schedule, saved tremendous
money. I’m a year ahead of schedule. And that’s what this country should be doing. We build roads and they cost two and three
and four times what they’re supposed to cost. We buy products for our military and they
come in at costs that are so far above what they were supposed to be, because we don’t
have people that know what they’re doing. When we look at the budget, the budget is
bad to a large extent because we have people that have no idea as to what to do and how
to buy. The Trump International is way under budget
and way ahead of schedule. And we should be able to do that for our country. HOLT: Well, we’re well behind schedule, so
I want to move to our next segment. We move into our next segment talking about
America’s direction. And let’s start by talking about race. The share of Americans who say race relations
are bad in this country is the highest it’s been in decades, much of it amplified by shootings
of African-Americans by police, as we’ve seen recently in Charlotte and Tulsa. Race has been a big issue in this campaign,
and one of you is going to have to bridge a very wide and bitter gap. So how do you heal the divide? Secretary Clinton, you get two minutes on
this. CLINTON: Well, you’re right. Race remains a significant challenge in our
country. Unfortunately, race still determines too much,
often determines where people live, determines what kind of education in their public schools
they can get, and, yes, it determines how they’re treated in the criminal justice system. We’ve just seen those two tragic examples
in both Tulsa and Charlotte. And we’ve got to do several things at the
same time. We have to restore trust between communities
and the police. We have to work to make sure that our police
are using the best training, the best techniques, that they’re well prepared to use force only
when necessary. Everyone should be respected by the law, and
everyone should respect the law. CLINTON: Right now, that’s not the case in
a lot of our neighborhoods. So I have, ever since the first day of my
campaign, called for criminal justice reform. I’ve laid out a platform that I think would
begin to remedy some of the problems we have in the criminal justice system. But we also have to recognize, in addition
to the challenges that we face with policing, 21:45:35 there are so many good, brave police
officers who equally want reform. So we have to bring communities together in
order to begin working on that as a mutual goal. And we’ve got to get guns out of the hands
of people who should not have them. The gun epidemic is the leading cause of death
of young African- American men, more than the next nine causes put together. So we have to do two things, as I said. We have to restore trust. We have to work with the police. We have to make sure they respect the communities
and the communities respect them. And we have to tackle the plague of gun violence,
which is a big contributor to a lot of the problems that we’re seeing today. HOLT: All right, Mr. Trump, you have two minutes. How do you heal the divide? TRUMP: Well, first of all, Secretary Clinton
doesn’t want to use a couple of words, and that’s law and order. And we need law and order. If we don’t have it, we’re not going to have
a country. And when I look at what’s going on in Charlotte,
a city I love, a city where I have investments, when I look at what’s going on throughout
various parts of our country, whether it’s — I mean, I can just keep naming them all
day long — we need law and order in our country. I just got today the, as you know, the endorsement
of the Fraternal Order of Police, we just — just came in. We have endorsements from, I think, almost
every police group, very — I mean, a large percentage of them in the United States. We have a situation where we have our inner
cities, African- Americans, Hispanics are living in he’ll because it’s so dangerous. You walk down the street, you get shot. 21:47:17 In Chicago, they’ve had thousands
of shootings, thousands since January 1st. Thousands of shootings. And I’m saying, where is this? Is this a war-torn country? What are we doing? And we have to stop the violence. We have to bring back law and order. In a place like Chicago, where thousands of
people have been killed, thousands over the last number of years, in fact, almost 4,000
have been killed since Barack Obama became president, over — almost 4,000 people in
Chicago have been killed. We have to bring back law and order. Now, whether or not in a place like Chicago
you do stop and frisk, which worked very well, Mayor Giuliani is here, worked very well in
New York. It brought the crime rate way down. But you take the gun away from criminals that
shouldn’t be having it. We have gangs roaming the street. And in many cases, they’re illegally here,
illegal immigrants. And they have guns. And they shoot people. And we have to be very strong. And we have to be very vigilant. We have to be — we have to know what we’re
doing. Right now, our police, in many cases, are
afraid to do anything. We have to protect our inner cities, because
African-American communities are being decimated by crime, decimated. HOLT: Your two — your two minutes expired,
but I do want to follow up. 21:48:38 Stop-and-frisk was ruled unconstitutional
in New York, because it largely singled out black and Hispanic young men. TRUMP: No, you’re wrong. It went before a judge, who was a very against-police
judge. It was taken away from her. And our mayor, our new mayor, refused to go
forward with the case. They would have won an appeal. If you look at it, throughout the country,
there are many places where it’s allowed. HOLT: The argument is that it’s a form of
racial profiling. TRUMP: No, the argument is that we have to
take the guns away from these people that have them and they are bad people that shouldn’t
have them. These are felons. These are people that are bad people that
shouldn’t be — 21:49:18 when you have 3,000 shootings in Chicago from January 1st, when
you have 4,000 people killed in Chicago by guns, from the beginning of the presidency
of Barack Obama, his hometown, you have to have stop-and-frisk. You need more police. You need a better community, you know, relation. You don’t have good community relations in
Chicago. It’s terrible. I have property there. It’s terrible what’s going on in Chicago. But when you look — and Chicago’s not the
only — you go to Ferguson, you go to so many different places. You need better relationships. I agree with Secretary Clinton on this. TRUMP: You need better relationships between
the communities and the police, because in some cases, it’s not good. But you look at Dallas, where the relationships
were really studied, the relationships were really a beautiful thing, and then five police
officers were killed one night very violently. So there’s some bad things going on. Some really bad things. HOLT: Secretary Clinton… TRUMP: But we need — Lester, we need law
and order. And we need law and order in the inner cities,
because the people that are most affected by what’s happening are African-American and
Hispanic people. And it’s very unfair to them what our politicians
are allowing to happen. HOLT: Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: 21:50:36 Well, I’ve heard — I’ve
heard Donald say this at his rallies, and it’s really unfortunate that he paints such
a dire negative picture of black communities in our country. TRUMP: Ugh. CLINTON: You know, the vibrancy of the black
church, the black businesses that employ so many people, the opportunities that so many
families are working to provide for their kids. There’s a lot that we should be proud of and
we should be supporting and lifting up. But we do always have to make sure we keep
people safe. There are the right ways of doing it, and
then there are ways that are ineffective. Stop-and-frisk was found to be unconstitutional
and, in part, because it was ineffective. It did not do what it needed to do. Now, I believe in community policing. And, in fact, violent crime is one-half of
what it was in 1991. Property crime is down 40 percent. We just don’t want to see it creep back up. We’ve had 25 years of very good cooperation. But there were some problems, some unintended
consequences. Too many young African-American and Latino
men ended up in jail for nonviolent offenses. And it’s just a fact that if you’re a young
African-American man and you do the same thing as a young white man, you are more likely
to be arrested, charged, convicted, and incarcerated. So we’ve got to address the systemic racism
in our criminal justice system. 21:52:20 We cannot just say law and order. We have to say — we have to come forward
with a plan that is going to divert people from the criminal justice system, deal with
mandatory minimum sentences, which have put too many people away for too long for doing
too little. We need to have more second chance programs. I’m glad that we’re ending private prisons
in the federal system; I want to see them ended in the state system. You shouldn’t have a profit motivation to
fill prison cells with young Americans. So there are some positive ways we can work
on this. And I believe strongly that commonsense gun
safety measures would assist us. Right now — and this is something Donald
has supported, along with the gun lobby — right now, we’ve got too many military- style weapons
on the streets. In a lot of places, our police are outgunned. We need comprehensive background checks, and
we need to keep guns out of the hands of those who will do harm. And we finally need to pass a prohibition
on anyone who’s on the terrorist watch list from being able to buy a gun in our country. 21:53:39 If you’re too dangerous to fly, you
are too dangerous to buy a gun. So there are things we can do, and we ought
to do it in a bipartisan way. HOLT: Secretary Clinton, last week, you said
we’ve got to do everything possible to improve policing, to go right at implicit bias. 21:53:50 Do you believe that police are implicitly
biased against black people? CLINTON: Lester, I think implicit bias is
a problem for everyone, not just police. I think, unfortunately, too many of us in
our great country jump to conclusions about each other. And therefore, I think we need all of us to
be asking hard questions about, you know, why am I feeling this way? But when it comes to policing, since it can
have literally fatal consequences, I have said, in my first budget, we would put money
into that budget to help us deal with implicit bias by retraining a lot of our police officers. I’ve met with a group of very distinguished,
experienced police chiefs a few weeks ago. They admit it’s an issue. They’ve got a lot of concerns. 21:54:38 Mental health is one of the biggest
concerns, because now police are having to handle a lot of really difficult mental health
problems on the street. They want support, they want more training,
they want more assistance. And I think the federal government could be
in a position where we would offer and provide that. HOLT: Mr. Trump… TRUMP: I’d like to respond to that. HOLT: Please. TRUMP: First of all, I agree, and a lot of
people even within my own party want to give certain rights to people on watch lists and
no- fly lists. I agree with you. When a person is on a watch list or a no-fly
list, and I have the endorsement of the NRA, which I’m very proud of. These are very, very good people, and they’re
protecting the Second Amendment. But I think we have to look very strongly
at no-fly lists and watch lists. And when people are on there, even if they
shouldn’t be on there, we’ll help them, we’ll help them legally, we’ll help them get off. But I tend to agree with that quite strongly. I do want to bring up the fact that you were
the one that brought up the words 21:55:33 super-predator about young black youth. And that’s a term that I think was a — it’s
— it’s been horribly met, as you know. I think you’ve apologized for it. But I think it was a terrible thing to say. And when it comes to stop-and-frisk, you know,
you’re talking about takes guns away. Well, I’m talking about taking guns away from
gangs and people that use them. And I don’t think — I really don’t think
you disagree with me on this, if you want to know the truth. I think maybe there’s a political reason why
you can’t say it, but I really don’t believe — in New York City, stop-and-frisk, we had
2,200 murders, and stop-and-frisk brought it down to 500 murders. Five hundred murders is a lot of murders. It’s hard to believe, 500 is like supposed
to be good? But we went from 2,200 to 500. And it was continued on by Mayor Bloomberg. And it was terminated by current mayor. But stop-and- frisk had a tremendous impact
on the safety of New York City. Tremendous beyond belief. So when you say it has no impact, it really
did. It had a very, very big impact. CLINTON: Well, it’s also fair to say, if we’re
going to talk about mayors, that under the current mayor, crime has continued to drop,
including murders. So there is… TRUMP: No, you’re wrong. You’re wrong. CLINTON: No, I’m not. TRUMP: Murders are up. All right. You check it. CLINTON: New York — New York has done an
excellent job. And I give credit — I give credit across
the board going back two mayors, two police chiefs, because it has worked. And other communities need to come together
to do what will work, as well. Look, one murder is too many. But it is important that we learn about what
has been effective. And not go to things that sound good that
really did not have the kind of impact that we would want. Who disagrees with keeping neighborhoods safe? But let’s also add, 21:57:30 no one should
disagree about respecting the rights of young men who live in those neighborhoods. And so we need to do a better job of working,
again, with the communities, faith communities, business communities, as well as the police
to try to deal with this problem. HOLT: This conversation is about race. And so, Mr. Trump, I have to ask you for five… TRUMP: I’d like to just respond, if I might. HOLT: Please — 20 seconds. TRUMP: I’d just like to respond. HOLT: Please respond, then I’ve got a quick
follow-up for you. TRUMP: I will. Look, the African-American community has been
let down by our politicians. They talk good around election time, like
right now, and after the election, they said, see ya later, I’ll see you in four years. The African-American community — because
— look, the community within the inner cities has been so badly treated. They’ve been abused and used in order to get
votes by Democrat politicians, because that’s what it is. They’ve controlled these communities for up
to 100 years. HOLT: Mr. Trump, let me… (CROSSTALK) CLINTON: Well, I — I do think… TRUMP: And I will tell you, DONALD TRUMP: Nobody knows the system better
than me. I alone can fix it. HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON: I’m going to close
my campaign focused on opportunities for kids and fairness for families. DONALD TRUMP: Hillary failed on the economy.
Everything she touched didn’t work out, nothing. HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON: Even if you’re totally
opposed to Donald Trump, you may still have some questions about me. JUDY WOODRUFF: Good evening. I’m Judy Woodruff. GWEN IFILL: And I’m Gwen Ifill. Welcome to this “PBS NewsHour” special coverage
of the first debate between the two major-party presidential candidates, Hillary Clinton and
Donald Trump. The stage is set at Hofstra University on
Long Island, New York. With the election 43 days away the race tightening, a lot is on
the line tonight, Judy. JUDY WOODRUFF: It certainly is, Gwen, and
given that this is the first time these two have faced each other one on one. Lester Holt of NBC News will be moderating. Joining us at the table are our regular contributors,
syndicated columnist Mark Shields, New York Times columnist David Brooks, and from The
Cook Political Report, Amy Walter. We welcome all you have here for the next
two hours. Amy, let’s start with you. What are you looking for? AMY WALTER, The Cook Political Report: Each
of these candidates has an enthusiasm gap problem within their own party. So, they have
got to get their partisans fired up. For Hillary Clinton, it’s young people. For
Donald Trump, he’s got to get those white college-educated voters back into the Republican
fold, where they have been. And then they have got to get those voters, both of them,
who are torn, don’t like either choice they have in front of them, to pick them. GWEN IFILL: Mark Shields, what would you — surprise
you the most of what these candidates might or might not do tonight? MARK SHIELDS: Does Donald Trump dare to be
boring? Does he come out sedated/presidential? And can Hillary Clinton, who is a marvelous
and superior deliverer of information, make an emotional connection with American voters? JUDY WOODRUFF: David, what are you on the
edge of your seat looking for? DAVID BROOKS: We have been around each other
too long. I wrote down emotional connection. (LAUGHTER) MARK SHIELDS: Did you? DAVID BROOKS: This is not a cognitive night. This is not philosophy. This is not grand
strategy. It’s moment of intimacy, that unscripted moment when the unconscious is revealed that
will be replayed on YouTube over and over and over again. And so it’s just, is he commanding or is he
cruel? Is she relatable and does she seem calmly smart? And it’s whether people get
that vibe, the first they vibe, that will determine the night. GWEN IFILL: Is this about what they know or
who they are? AMY WALTER: Well, I think it’s mostly about
who they are. For voters at this stage of the game, they
are looking up on that dais to see who they can spend the next four years with, who they
want to invite into their homes moment after moment. Many voters say, I don’t want either one of
them in there. GWEN IFILL: A lot of them. AMY WALTER: A lot of voters are saying that. But this is the one maybe that they’re not
going to like, but they will feel comfortable enough. JUDY WOODRUFF: But, Mark, people are going
to be fact-checking this debate. They’re going to be raising questions about whether what
either one of them said was correct or not. MARK SHIELDS: No, you’re right, Judy. And if it’s what they know, it will be a short
evening… (LAUGHTER) MARK SHIELDS: … for the Republican nominee,
whose knowledge bank has been overdrawn. And I think it’s about, more than anything
else, each case, what does he know, his command of it, is he comfortable with it, and who
she is. And I think that is really the question. DAVID BROOKS: And there is the gender politics. GWEN IFILL: OK. Well, we’re turning now to Lester Holt of
NBC News. TRANSCRIPT START HOLT: Good evening from Hofstra University
in Hempstead, New York. I’m Lester Holt, anchor of “NBC Nightly News.” I want to welcome you
to the first presidential debate. The participants tonight are Donald Trump
and Hillary Clinton. This debate is sponsored by the Commission on Presidential Debates,
a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization. The commission drafted tonight’s format, and the
rules have been agreed to by the campaigns. The 90-minute debate is divided into six segments,
each 15 minutes long. We’ll explore three topic areas tonight: Achieving prosperity;
America’s direction; and securing America. At the start of each segment, I will ask the
same lead-off question to both candidates, and they will each have up to two minutes
to respond. From that point until the end of the segment, we’ll have an open discussion. The questions are mine and have not been shared
with the commission or the campaigns. The audience here in the room has agreed to remain
silent so that we can focus on what the candidates are saying. I will invite you to applaud, however, at
this moment, as we welcome the candidates: Democratic nominee for president of the United
States, Hillary Clinton, and Republican nominee for president of the United States, Donald
J. Trump. (APPLAUSE) CLINTON: How are you, Donald? (APPLAUSE) HOLT: Good luck to you. (APPLAUSE) Well, I don’t expect us to cover all the issues
of this campaign tonight, but I remind everyone, there are two more presidential debates scheduled.
We are going to focus on many of the issues that voters tell us are most important, and
we’re going to press for specifics. I am honored to have this role, but this evening belongs
to the candidates and, just as important, to the American people. Candidates, we look forward to hearing you
articulate your policies and your positions, as well as your visions and your values. So,
let’s begin. We’re calling this opening segment “Achieving
Prosperity.” And central to that is jobs. There are two economic realities in America
today. There’s been a record six straight years of job growth, and new census numbers
show incomes have increased at a record rate after years of stagnation. However, income
inequality remains significant, and nearly half of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. Beginning with you, Secretary Clinton, why
are you a better choice than your opponent to create the kinds of jobs that will put
more money into the pockets of American works? CLINTON: Well, thank you, Lester, and thanks
to Hofstra for hosting us. The central question in this election is really
what kind of country we want to be and what kind of future we’ll build together. Today
is my granddaughter’s second birthday, so I think about this a lot. First, we have to
build an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top. That means we need
new jobs, good jobs, with rising incomes. I want us to invest in you. I want us to invest
in your future. That means jobs in infrastructure, in advanced manufacturing, innovation and
technology, clean, renewable energy, and small business, because most of the new jobs will
come from small business. We also have to make the economy fairer. That starts with
raising the national minimum wage and also guarantee, finally, equal pay for women’s
work. CLINTON: I also want to see more companies
do profit-sharing. If you help create the profits, you should be able to share in them,
not just the executives at the top. And I want us to do more to support people
who are struggling to balance family and work. I’ve heard from so many of you about the difficult
choices you face and the stresses that you’re under. So let’s have paid family leave, earned
sick days. Let’s be sure we have affordable child care and debt-free college. How are we going to do it? We’re going to
do it by having the wealthy pay their fair share and close the corporate loopholes. Finally, we tonight are on the stage together,
Donald Trump and I. Donald, it’s good to be with you. We’re going to have a debate where
we are talking about the important issues facing our country. You have to judge us,
who can shoulder the immense, awesome responsibilities of the presidency, who can put into action
the plans that will make your life better. I hope that I will be able to earn your vote
on November 8th. HOLT: Secretary Clinton, thank you. Mr. Trump, the same question to you. It’s
about putting money — more money into the pockets of American workers. You have up to
two minutes. TRUMP: 21:08:32 Thank you, Lester. Our jobs
are fleeing the country. They’re going to Mexico. They’re going to many other countries.
You look at what China is doing to our country in terms of making our product. They’re devaluing
their currency, and there’s nobody in our government to fight them. And we have a very
good fight. And we have a winning fight. Because they’re using our country as a piggy bank
to rebuild China, and many other countries are doing the same thing. So we’re losing our good jobs, so many of
them. When you look at what’s happening in Mexico, a friend of mine who builds plants
said it’s the eighth wonder of the world. They’re building some of the biggest plants
anywhere in the world, some of the most sophisticated, some of the best plants. With the United States,
as he said, not so much. So Ford is leaving. You see that, their small
car division leaving. Thousands of jobs leaving Michigan, leaving Ohio. They’re all leaving.
And we can’t allow it to happen anymore. As far as child care is concerned and so many
other things, I think Hillary and I agree on that. We probably disagree a little bit
as to numbers and amounts and what we’re going to do, but perhaps we’ll be talking about
that later. But we have to stop our jobs from being stolen
from us. We have to stop our companies from leaving the United States and, with it, firing
all of their people. All you have to do is take a look at Carrier air conditioning in
Indianapolis. They left — fired 1,400 people. They’re going to Mexico. So many hundreds
and hundreds of companies are doing this. TRUMP: We cannot let it happen. Under my plan,
I’ll be reducing taxes tremendously, from 35 percent to 15 percent for companies, small
and big businesses. That’s going to be a job creator like we haven’t seen since Ronald
Reagan. It’s going to be a beautiful thing to watch. Companies will come. They will build. They
will expand. New companies will start. And I look very, very much forward to doing it.
We have to renegotiate our trade deals, and we have to stop these countries from stealing
our companies and our jobs. HOLT: Secretary Clinton, would you like to
respond? CLINTON: Well, I think that trade is an important
issue. Of course, we are 5 percent of the world’s population; we have to trade with
the other 95 percent. And we need to have smart, fair trade deals. We also, though, need to have a tax system
that rewards work and not just financial transactions. And the kind of plan that Donald has put forth
would be trickle-down economics all over again. In fact, it would be the most extreme version,
the biggest tax cuts for the top percent of the people in this country than we’ve ever
had. I call it trumped-up trickle-down, because
that’s exactly what it would be. That is not how we grow the economy. We just have a different view about what’s
best for growing the economy, how we make investments that will actually produce jobs
and rising incomes. I think we come at it from somewhat different
perspectives. I understand that. You know, Donald was very fortunate in his life, and
that’s all to his benefit. He started his business with $14 million, borrowed from his
father, and he really believes that the more you help wealthy people, the better off we’ll
be and that everything will work out from there. I don’t buy that. I have a different experience.
My father was a small-businessman. He worked really hard. He printed drapery fabrics on
long tables, where he pulled out those fabrics and he went down with a silkscreen and dumped
the paint in and took the squeegee and kept going. And so what I believe is the more we can do
for the middle class, the more we can invest in you, your education, your skills, your
future, the better we will be off and the better we’ll grow. That’s the kind of economy
I want us to see again. 21:12:21 HOLT: Let me follow up with Mr. Trump, if
you can. You’ve talked about creating 25 million jobs, and you’ve promised to bring back millions
of jobs for Americans. How are you going to bring back the industries that have left this
country for cheaper labor overseas? How, specifically, are you going to tell American manufacturers
that you have to come back? TRUMP: Well, for one thing — and before we
start on that — my father gave me a very small loan in 1975, and I built it into a
company that’s worth many, many billions of dollars, with some of the greatest assets
in the world, and I say that only because that’s the kind of thinking that our country
needs. Our country’s in deep trouble. We don’t know
what we’re doing when it comes to devaluations and all of these countries all over the world,
especially China. They’re the best, the best ever at it. What they’re doing to us is a
very, very sad thing. So we have to do that. We have to renegotiate
our trade deals. And, Lester, they’re taking our jobs, they’re giving incentives, they’re
doing things that, frankly, we don’t do. Let me give you the example of Mexico. They
have a VAT tax. We’re on a different system. When we sell into Mexico, there’s a tax. When
they sell in — automatic, 16 percent, approximately. When they sell into us, there’s no tax. It’s
a defective agreement. It’s been defective for a long time, many years, but the politicians
haven’t done anything about it. Now, in all fairness to Secretary Clinton
— yes, is that OK? Good. I want you to be very happy. It’s very important to me. But in all fairness to Secretary Clinton,
when she started talking about this, it was really very recently. She’s been doing this
for 30 years. And why hasn’t she made the agreements better? The NAFTA agreement is
defective. Just because of the tax and many other reasons, but just because of the fact… HOLT: Let me interrupt just a moment, but… TRUMP: Secretary Clinton and others, politicians,
should have been doing this for years, not right now, because of the fact that we’ve
created a movement. They should have been doing this for years. What’s happened to our
jobs and our country and our economy generally is — look, we owe $20 trillion. We cannot
do it any longer, Lester. HOLT: 21:14:28 Back to the question, though.
How do you bring back — specifically bring back jobs, American manufacturers? How do
you make them bring the jobs back? TRUMP: Well, the first thing you do is don’t
let the jobs leave. The companies are leaving. I could name, I mean, there are thousands
of them. They’re leaving, and they’re leaving in bigger numbers than ever. And what you do is you say, fine, you want
to go to Mexico or some other country, good luck. We wish you a lot of luck. But if you
think you’re going to make your air conditioners or your cars or your cookies or whatever you
make and bring them into our country without a tax, you’re wrong. And once you say you’re going to have to tax
them coming in, and our politicians never do this, because they have special interests
and the special interests want those companies to leave, because in many cases, they own
the companies. So what I’m saying is, we can stop them from leaving. We have to stop them
from leaving. And that’s a big, big factor. HOLT: Let me let Secretary Clinton get in
here. CLINTON: 21:15:19 Well, let’s stop for a second
and remember where we were eight years ago. We had the worst financial crisis, the Great
Recession, the worst since the 1930s. That was in large part because of tax policies
that slashed taxes on the wealthy, failed to invest in the middle class, took their
eyes off of Wall Street, and created a perfect storm. In fact, Donald was one of the people who
rooted for the housing crisis. He said, back in 2006, “Gee, I hope it does collapse, because
then I can go in and buy some and make some money.” Well, it did collapse. TRUMP: 21:16:02 That’s called business, by
the way. CLINTON: Nine million people — nine million
people lost their jobs. Five million people lost their homes. And $13 trillion in family
wealth was wiped out. Now, we have come back from that abyss. And
it has not been easy. So we’re now on the precipice of having a potentially much better
economy, but the last thing we need to do is to go back to the policies that failed
us in the first place. Independent experts have looked at what I’ve
proposed and looked at what Donald’s proposed, and basically they’ve said this, that if his
tax plan, which would blow up the debt by over $5 trillion and would in some instances
disadvantage middle-class families compared to the wealthy, were to go into effect, we
would lose 3.5 million jobs and maybe have another recession. They’ve looked at my plans and they’ve said,
OK, if we can do this, and I intend to get it done, we will have 10 million more new
jobs, because we will be making investments where we can grow the economy. Take clean
energy. Some country is going to be the clean- energy superpower of the 21st century. Donald
thinks that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese. I think it’s real. TRUMP: I did not. I did not. I do not say
that. CLINTON: I think science is real. TRUMP: I do not say that. CLINTON: And I think it’s important that we
grip this and deal with it, both at home and abroad. And here’s what we can do. We can
deploy a half a billion more solar panels. We can have enough clean energy to power every
home. We can build a new modern electric grid. That’s a lot of jobs; that’s a lot of new
economic activity. So I’ve tried to be very specific about what
we can and should do, and I am determined that we’re going to get the economy really
moving again, building on the progress we’ve made over the last eight years, but never
going back to what got us in trouble in the first place. HOLT: Mr. Trump? TRUMP: She talks about solar panels. We invested
in a solar company, our country. That was a disaster. They lost plenty of money on that
one. Now, look, I’m a great believer in all forms
of energy, but we’re putting a lot of people out of work. Our energy policies are a disaster.
Our country is losing so much in terms of energy, in terms of paying off our debt. You
can’t do what you’re looking to do with $20 trillion in debt. The Obama administration, from the time they’ve
come in, is over 230 years’ worth of debt, and he’s topped it. He’s doubled it in a course
of almost eight years, seven-and-a-half years, to be semi- exact. So I will tell you this. We have to do a much
better job at keeping our jobs. And we have to do a much better job at giving companies
incentives to build new companies or to expand, because they’re not doing it. 21:18:59 And all you have to do is look at
Michigan and look at Ohio and look at all of these places where so many of their jobs
and their companies are just leaving, they’re gone. And, Hillary, I’d just ask you this. You’ve
been doing this for 30 years. Why are you just thinking about these solutions right
now? For 30 years, you’ve been doing it, and now you’re just starting to think of solutions. CLINTON: Well, actually… TRUMP: I will bring — excuse me. I will bring
back jobs. You can’t bring back jobs. CLINTON: Well, actually, I have thought about
this quite a bit. TRUMP: Yeah, for 30 years. CLINTON: And I have — well, not quite that
long. I think my husband did a pretty good job in the 1990s. I think a lot about what
worked and how we can make it work again… TRUMP: Well, he approved NAFTA… (CROSSTALK) CLINTON: … million new jobs, a balanced
budget… TRUMP: He approved NAFTA, which is the single
worst trade deal ever approved in this country. CLINTON: Incomes went up for everybody. Manufacturing
jobs went up also in the 1990s, if we’re actually going to look at the facts. When I was in the Senate, I had a number of
trade deals that came before me, and I held them all to the same test. Will they create
jobs in America? Will they raise incomes in America? And are they good for our national
security? Some of them I voted for. The biggest one, a multinational one known as CAFTA, I
voted against. And because I hold the same standards as I look at all of these trade
deals. But let’s not assume that trade is the only
challenge we have in the economy. I think it is a part of it, and I’ve said what I’m
going to do. I’m going to have a special prosecutor. We’re going to enforce the trade deals we
have, and we’re going to hold people accountable. When I was secretary of state, we actually
increased American exports globally 30 percent. We increased them to China 50 percent. So
I know how to really work to get new jobs and to get exports that helped to create more
new jobs. HOLT: Very quickly… TRUMP: But you haven’t done it in 30 years
or 26 years or any number you want to… CLINTON: Well, I’ve been a senator, Donald… TRUMP: You haven’t done it. You haven’t done
it. CLINTON: And I have been a secretary of state… TRUMP: Excuse me. CLINTON: And I have done a lot… TRUMP: Your husband signed NAFTA, which was
one of the worst things that ever happened to the manufacturing industry. CLINTON: Well, that’s your opinion. That is
your opinion. TRUMP: You go to New England, you go to Ohio,
Pennsylvania, you go anywhere you want, Secretary Clinton, and you will see devastation where
manufacture is down 30, 40, sometimes 50 percent. NAFTA is the worst trade deal maybe ever signed
anywhere, but certainly ever signed in this country. And now you want to approve Trans-Pacific
Partnership. You were totally in favor of it. Then you heard what I was saying, how
bad it is, and you said, I can’t win that debate. But you know that if you did win,
you would approve that, and that will be almost as bad as NAFTA. Nothing will ever top NAFTA. CLINTON: Well, that is just not accurate.
I was against it once it was finally negotiated and the terms were laid out. I wrote about
that in… TRUMP: You called it the gold standard. (CROSSTALK) TRUMP: You called it the gold standard of
trade deals. You said it’s the finest deal you’ve ever seen. CLINTON: No. TRUMP: And then you heard what I said about
it, and all of a sudden you were against it. CLINTON: Well, Donald, I know you live in
your own reality, but that is not the facts. The facts are — I did say I hoped it would
be a good deal, but when it was negotiated… TRUMP: Not. CLINTON: … which I was not responsible for,
I concluded it wasn’t. I wrote about that in my book… TRUMP: So is it President Obama’s fault? CLINTON: … before you even announced. TRUMP: Is it President Obama’s fault? CLINTON: Look, there are differences… TRUMP: Secretary, is it President Obama’s
fault? CLINTON: There are… TRUMP: Because he’s pushing it. CLINTON: There are different views about what’s
good for our country, our economy, and our leadership in the world. And I think it’s
important to look at what we need to do to get the economy going again. That’s why I
said new jobs with rising incomes, investments, not in more tax cuts that would add $5 trillion
to the debt. TRUMP: But you have no plan. CLINTON: But in — oh, but I do. TRUMP: Secretary, you have no plan. CLINTON: In fact, I have written a book about
it. It’s called “Stronger Together.” You can pick it up tomorrow at a bookstore… TRUMP: That’s about all you’ve… (CROSSTALK) HOLT: Folks, we’re going to… CLINTON: … or at an airport near you. HOLT: We’re going to move to… CLINTON: But it’s because I see this — we
need to have strong growth, fair growth, sustained growth. We also have to look at how we help
families balance the responsibilities at home and the responsibilities at business. So we have a very robust set of plans. And
people have looked at both of our plans, have concluded that mine would create 10 million
jobs and yours would lose us 3.5 million jobs, and explode the debt which would have a recession. TRUMP: You are going to approve one of the
biggest tax cuts in history. 21:23:20 You are going to approve one of the biggest tax
increases in history. You are going to drive business out. Your regulations are a disaster,
and you’re going to increase regulations all over the place. And by the way, my tax cut is the biggest
since Ronald Reagan. I’m very proud of it. It will create tremendous numbers of new jobs.
But regulations, you are going to regulate these businesses out of existence. When I go around — Lester, I tell you this,
I’ve been all over. And when I go around, despite the tax cut, the thing — the things
that business as in people like the most is the fact that I’m cutting regulation. You
have regulations on top of regulations, and new companies cannot form and old companies
are going out of business. And you want to increase the regulations and make them even
worse. I’m going to cut regulations. I’m going to
cut taxes big league, and you’re going to raise taxes big league, end of story. HOLT: Let me get you to pause right there,
because we’re going to move into — we’re going to move into the next segment. We’re
going to talk taxes… CLINTON: That can’t — that can’t be left
to stand. HOLT: Please just take 30 seconds and then
we’re going to go on. CLINTON: I kind of assumed that there would
be a lot of these charges and claims, and so… TRUMP: Facts. CLINTON: So we have taken the home page of
my website, HillaryClinton.com, and we’ve turned it into a fact-checker. So if you want
to see in real-time what the facts are, please go and take a look. Because what I have proposed… TRUMP: And take a look at mine, also, and
you’ll see. CLINTON: … would not add a penny to the
debt, and your plans would add $5 trillion to the debt. What I have proposed would cut
regulations and streamline them for small businesses. What I have proposed would be
paid for by raising taxes on the wealthy, because they have made all the gains in the
economy. And I think it’s time that the wealthy and corporations paid their fair share to
support this country. HOLT: Well, you just opened the next segment. TRUMP: Well, could I just finish — I think
I… (CROSSTALK) HOLT: I’m going to give you a chance right
here… TRUMP: I think I should — you go to her website,
and you take a look at her website. HOLT: … with a new 15-minute segment… TRUMP: She’s going to raise taxes $1.3 trillion. HOLT: Mr. Trump, I’m going to… TRUMP: And look at her website. You know what?
It’s no difference than this. She’s telling us how to fight ISIS. Just go to her website.
She tells you how to fight ISIS on her website. I don’t think General Douglas MacArthur would
like that too much. HOLT: The next segment, we’re continuing… CLINTON: Well, at least I have a plan to fight
ISIS. HOLT: … achieving prosperity… TRUMP: No, no, you’re telling the enemy everything
you want to do. CLINTON: No, we’re not. No, we’re not. TRUMP: See, you’re telling the enemy everything
you want to do. No wonder you’ve been fighting — no wonder you’ve been fighting ISIS your
entire adult life. CLINTON: That’s a — that’s — go to the — please,
fact checkers, get to work. HOLT: OK, you are unpacking a lot here. And
we’re still on the issue of achieving prosperity. And I want to talk about taxes. The fundamental
difference between the two of you concerns the wealthy. Secretary Clinton, you’re calling for a tax
increase on the wealthiest Americans. I’d like you to further defend that. And, Mr.
Trump, you’re calling for tax cuts for the wealthy. I’d like you to defend that. And
this next two-minute answer goes to you, Mr. Trump. TRUMP: Well, I’m really calling for major
jobs, because the wealthy are going create tremendous jobs. They’re going to expand their
companies. They’re going to do a tremendous job. I’m getting rid of the carried interest provision.
And if you really look, it’s not a tax — it’s really not a great thing for the wealthy.
It’s a great thing for the middle class. It’s a great thing for companies to expand. And when these people are going to put billions
and billions of dollars into companies, and when they’re going to bring $2.5 trillion
back from overseas, where they can’t bring the money back, because politicians like Secretary
Clinton won’t allow them to bring the money back, because the taxes are so onerous, and
the bureaucratic red tape, so what — is so bad. So what they’re doing is they’re leaving our
country, and they’re, believe it or not, leaving because taxes are too high and because some
of them have lots of money outside of our country. And instead of bringing it back and
putting the money to work, because they can’t work out a deal to — and everybody agrees
it should be brought back. Instead of that, they’re leaving our country
to get their money, because they can’t bring their money back into our country, because
of bureaucratic red tape, because they can’t get together. Because we have — we have a
president that can’t sit them around a table and get them to approve something. And here’s the thing. Republicans and Democrats
agree that this should be done, $2.5 trillion. I happen to think it’s double that. It’s probably
$5 trillion that we can’t bring into our country, Lester. And with a little leadership, you’d
get it in here very quickly, and it could be put to use on the inner cities and lots
of other things, and it would be beautiful. But we have no leadership. And honestly, that
starts with Secretary Clinton. 21:28:01 HOLT: All right. You have two minutes of the
same question to defend tax increases on the wealthiest Americans, Secretary Clinton. CLINTON: I have a feeling that by, the end
of this evening, I’m going to be blamed for everything that’s ever happened. TRUMP: Why not? CLINTON: Why not? Yeah, why not? (LAUGHTER) You know, just join the debate by saying more
crazy things. Now, let me say this, it is absolutely the case… TRUMP: There’s nothing crazy about not letting
our companies bring their money back into their country. HOLT: This is — this is Secretary Clinton’s
two minutes, please. TRUMP: Yes. CLINTON: Yeah, well, let’s start the clock
again, Lester. We’ve looked at your tax proposals. I don’t see changes in the corporate tax rates
or the kinds of proposals you’re referring to that would cause the repatriation, bringing
back of money that’s stranded overseas. I happen to support that. TRUMP: Then you didn’t read it. CLINTON: I happen to — I happen to support
that in a way that will actually work to our benefit. But when I look at what you have
proposed, you have what is called now the 21:29:01 Trump loophole, because it would
so advantage you and the business you do. You’ve proposed an approach that has a… TRUMP: Who gave it that name? The first I’ve
— who gave it that name? (CROSSTALK) HOLT: Mr. Trump, this is Secretary Clinton’s
two minutes. CLINTON: … $4 billion tax benefit for your
family. And when you look at what you are proposing… TRUMP: How much? How much for my family? CLINTON: … it is… TRUMP: Lester, how much? CLINTON: … as I said, trumped-up trickle-down.
Trickle-down did not work. It got us into the mess we were in, in 2008 and 2009. Slashing
taxes on the wealthy hasn’t worked. And a lot of really smart, wealthy people
know that. And they are saying, hey, we need to do more to make the contributions we should
be making to rebuild the middle class. CLINTON: I don’t think top-down works in America.
I think building the middle class, investing in the middle class, making college debt-free
so more young people can get their education, helping people refinance their — their debt
from college at a lower rate. Those are the kinds of things that will really boost the
economy. Broad-based, inclusive growth is what we need in America, not more advantages
for people at the very top. HOLT: Mr. Trump, we’re… TRUMP: Typical politician. All talk, no action.
Sounds good, doesn’t work. Never going to happen. Our country is suffering because people
like Secretary Clinton have made such bad decisions in terms of our jobs and in terms
of what’s going on. Now, look, we have the worst revival of an
economy since the Great Depression. And believe me: We’re in a bubble right now. And the only
thing that looks good is the stock market, but if you raise interest rates even a little
bit, that’s going to come crashing down. We are in a big, fat, ugly bubble. And we
better be awfully careful. And we have a Fed that’s doing political things. This Janet
Yellen of the Fed. The Fed is doing political — by keeping the interest rates at this level.
And believe me: The day Obama goes off, and he leaves, and goes out to the golf course
for the rest of his life to play golf 21:31:00, when they raise interest rates, you’re going
to see some very bad things happen, because the Fed is not doing their job. The Fed is
being more political than Secretary Clinton. HOLT: Mr. Trump, we’re talking about the burden
that Americans have to pay, yet you have not released your tax returns. And the reason
nominees have released their returns for decades is so that voters will know if their potential
president owes money to — who he owes it to and any business conflicts. Don’t Americans
have a right to know if there are any conflicts of interest? TRUMP: I don’t mind releasing — I’m under
a routine audit. And it’ll be released. And — as soon as the audit’s finished, it will
be released. But you will learn more about Donald Trump
by going down to the federal elections, where I filed a 104-page essentially financial statement
of sorts, the forms that they have. It shows income — in fact, the income — I just looked
today — the income is filed at $694 million for this past year, $694 million. If you would
have told me I was going to make that 15 or 20 years ago, I would have been very surprised. But that’s the kind of thinking that our country
needs. When we have a country that’s doing so badly, that’s being ripped off by every
single country in the world, it’s the kind of thinking that our country needs, because
everybody — Lester, we have a trade deficit with all of the countries that we do business
with, of almost $800 billion a year. You know what that is? That means, who’s negotiating
these trade deals? We have people that are political hacks negotiating
our trade deals. HOLT: The IRS says an audit… TRUMP: Excuse me. HOLT: … of your taxes — you’re perfectly
free to release your taxes during an audit. And so the question, does the public’s right
to know outweigh your personal… TRUMP: Well, I told you, I will release them
as soon as the audit. Look, I’ve been under audit almost for 15 years. 21:33:00 I know
a lot of wealthy people that have never been audited. I said, do you get audited? I get
audited almost every year. And in a way, I should be complaining. I’m
not even complaining. I don’t mind it. It’s almost become a way of life. I get audited
by the IRS. But other people don’t. I will say this. We have a situation in this
country that has to be taken care of. I will release my tax returns — against my lawyer’s
wishes — when she releases her 33,000 e-mails that have been deleted. As soon as she releases
them, I will release. (APPLAUSE) I will release my tax returns. And that’s
against — my lawyers, they say, “Don’t do it.” I will tell you this. No — in fact,
watching shows, they’re reading the papers. Almost every lawyer says, you don’t release
your returns until the audit’s complete. When the audit’s complete, I’ll do it. But I would
go against them if she releases her e-mails. HOLT: So it’s negotiable? TRUMP: It’s not negotiable, no. Let her release
the e-mails. Why did she delete 33,000… HOLT: Well, I’ll let her answer that. But
let me just admonish the audience one more time. There was an agreement. We did ask you
to be silent, so it would be helpful for us. Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: Well, I think you’ve seen another
example of bait-and- switch here. For 40 years, everyone running for president has released
their tax returns. You can go and see nearly, I think, 39, 40 years of our tax returns,
but everyone has done it. We know the IRS has made clear there is no prohibition on
releasing it when you’re under audit. So you’ve got to ask yourself, why won’t he
release his tax returns? And I think there may be a couple of reasons. First, maybe he’s
not as rich as he says he is. Second, maybe he’s not as charitable as he claims to be. CLINTON: Third, we don’t know all of his business
dealings, but we have been told through investigative reporting that he owes about $650 million
to Wall Street and foreign banks. Or maybe he doesn’t want the American people, all of
you watching tonight, to know that he’s paid nothing in federal taxes, because the only
years that anybody’s ever seen were a couple of years when he had to turn them over to
state authorities when he was trying to get a casino license, and they showed he didn’t
pay any federal income tax. 21:35:27 TRUMP: That makes me smart. CLINTON: So if he’s paid zero, that means
zero for troops, zero for vets, zero for schools or health. And I think probably he’s not all
that enthusiastic about having the rest of our country see what the real reasons are,
because it must be something really important, even terrible, that he’s trying to hide. And the financial disclosure statements, they
don’t give you the tax rate. They don’t give you all the details that tax returns would.
And it just seems to me that this is something that the American people deserve to see. And
I have no reason to believe that he’s ever going to release his tax returns, because
there’s something he’s hiding. And we’ll guess. We’ll keep guessing at what
it might be that he’s hiding. But I think the question is, were he ever to get near
the White House, what would be those conflicts? Who does he owe money to? Well, he owes you
the answers to that, and he should provide them. HOLT: He also — he also raised the issue
of your e-mails. Do you want to respond to that? CLINTON: I do. You know, I made a mistake
using a private e- mail. TRUMP: That’s for sure. CLINTON: And if I had to do it over again,
I would, obviously, do it differently. But I’m not going to make any excuses. It was
a mistake, and I take responsibility for that. HOLT: Mr. Trump? TRUMP: That was more than a mistake. That
was done purposely. OK? That was not a mistake. That was done purposely. When you have your
staff taking the Fifth Amendment, taking the Fifth so they’re not prosecuted, when you
have the man that set up the illegal server taking the Fifth, I think it’s disgraceful.
And believe me, this country thinks it’s — really thinks it’s disgraceful, also. As far as my tax returns, you don’t learn
that much from tax returns. That I can tell you. You learn a lot from financial disclosure.
And you should go down and take a look at that. The other thing, I’m extremely underleveraged.
The report that said $650 — which, by the way, a lot of friends of mine that know my
business say, boy, that’s really not a lot of money. It’s not a lot of money relative
to what I had. The buildings that were in question, they
said in the same report, which was — actually, it wasn’t even a bad story, to be honest with
you, but the buildings are worth $3.9 billion. And the $650 isn’t even on that. But it’s
not $650. It’s much less than that. But I could give you a list of banks, I would
— if that would help you, I would give you a list of banks. These are very fine institutions,
very fine banks. I could do that very quickly. I am very underleveraged. I have a great company.
I have a tremendous income. And the reason I say that is not in a braggadocios way. It’s
because it’s about time that this country had somebody running it that has an idea about
money. When we have $20 trillion in debt, and our
country’s a mess, you know, it’s one thing to have $20 trillion in debt and our roads
are good and our bridges are good and everything’s in great shape, our airports. 21:38:25 Our
airports are like from a third world country. You land at LaGuardia, you land at Kennedy,
you land at LAX, you land at Newark, and you come in from Dubai and Qatar and you see these
incredible — you come in from China, you see these incredible airports, and you land
— we’ve become a third world country. So the worst of all things has happened. We
owe $20 trillion, and we’re a mess. We haven’t even started. And we’ve spent $6 trillion
in the Middle East, according to a report that I just saw. Whether it’s 6 or 5, but
it looks like it’s 6, $6 trillion in the Middle East, we could have rebuilt our country twice. And it’s really a shame. And it’s politicians
like Secretary Clinton that have caused this problem. Our country has tremendous problems.
We’re a debtor nation. We’re a serious debtor nation. And we have a country that needs new
roads, new tunnels, new bridges, new airports, new schools, new hospitals. And we don’t have
the money, because it’s been squandered on so many of your ideas. HOLT: We’ll let you respond and we’ll move
on to the next segment. CLINTON: And maybe because you haven’t paid
any federal income tax for a lot of years. (APPLAUSE) And the other thing I think is important… TRUMP: It would be squandered, too, believe
me. CLINTON: … is if your — if your main claim
to be president of the United States is your business, then I think we should talk about
that. You know, your campaign manager said that you built a lot of businesses on the
backs of little guys. And, indeed, I have met a lot of the people
who were stiffed by you and your businesses, Donald. I’ve met dishwashers, painters, architects,
glass installers, marble installers, drapery installers, like my dad was, who you refused
to pay when they finished the work that you asked them to do. We have an architect in the audience who designed
one of your clubhouses at one of your golf courses. It’s a beautiful facility. It immediately
was put to use. And you wouldn’t pay what the man needed to be paid, what he was charging
you to do… TRUMP: Maybe he didn’t do a good job and I
was unsatisfied with his work… CLINTON: Well, to… TRUMP: Which our country should do, too. CLINTON: Do the thousands of people that you
have stiffed over the course of your business not deserve some kind of apology from someone
who has taken their labor, taken the goods that they produced, and then refused to pay
them? 21:40 I can only say that I’m certainly relieved
that my late father never did business with you. He provided a good middle-class life
for us, but the people he worked for, he expected the bargain to be kept on both sides. And when we talk about your business, you’ve
taken business bankruptcy six times. There are a lot of great businesspeople that have
never taken bankruptcy once. You call yourself the King of Debt. You talk about leverage.
You even at one time suggested that you would try to negotiate down the national debt of
the United States. TRUMP: Wrong. Wrong. CLINTON: Well, sometimes there’s not a direct
transfer of skills from business to government, but sometimes what happened in business would
be really bad for government. HOLT: Let’s let Mr. Trump… CLINTON: And we need to be very clear about
that. TRUMP: So, yeah, I think — I do think it’s
time. Look, it’s all words, it’s all sound bites. I built an unbelievable company. Some
of the greatest assets anywhere in the world, real estate assets anywhere in the world,
beyond the United States, in Europe, lots of different places. It’s an unbelievable
company. But on occasion, four times, we used certain
laws that are there. And when Secretary Clinton talks about people that didn’t get paid, first
of all, they did get paid a lot, but taken advantage of the laws of the nation. Now, if you want to change the laws, you’ve
been there a long time, change the laws. But I take advantage of the laws of the nation
because I’m running a company. My obligation right now is to do well for myself, my family,
my employees, for my companies. And that’s what I do. But what she doesn’t say is that tens of thousands
of people that are unbelievably happy and that love me. I’ll give you an example. We’re
just opening up on Pennsylvania Avenue right next to the White House, so if I don’t get
there one way, I’m going to get to Pennsylvania Avenue another. But we’re opening the Old Post Office. Under
budget, ahead of schedule, saved tremendous money. I’m a year ahead of schedule. And that’s
what this country should be doing. We build roads and they cost two and three
and four times what they’re supposed to cost. We buy products for our military and they
come in at costs that are so far above what they were supposed to be, because we don’t
have people that know what they’re doing. When we look at the budget, the budget is
bad to a large extent because we have people that have no idea as to what to do and how
to buy. The Trump International is way under budget and way ahead of schedule. And we should
be able to do that for our country. HOLT: Well, we’re well behind schedule, so
I want to move to our next segment. We move into our next segment talking about America’s
direction. And let’s start by talking about race. The share of Americans who say race relations
are bad in this country is the highest it’s been in decades, much of it amplified by shootings
of African-Americans by police, as we’ve seen recently in Charlotte and Tulsa. Race has
been a big issue in this campaign, and one of you is going to have to bridge a very wide
and bitter gap. So how do you heal the divide? Secretary Clinton,
you get two minutes on this. CLINTON: Well, you’re right. Race remains
a significant challenge in our country. Unfortunately, race still determines too much, often determines
where people live, determines what kind of education in their public schools they can
get, and, yes, it determines how they’re treated in the criminal justice system. We’ve just
seen those two tragic examples in both Tulsa and Charlotte. And we’ve got to do several things at the
same time. We have to restore trust between communities and the police. We have to work
to make sure that our police are using the best training, the best techniques, that they’re
well prepared to use force only when necessary. Everyone should be respected by the law, and
everyone should respect the law. CLINTON: Right now, that’s not the case in
a lot of our neighborhoods. So I have, ever since the first day of my campaign, called
for criminal justice reform. I’ve laid out a platform that I think would begin to remedy
some of the problems we have in the criminal justice system. But we also have to recognize, in addition
to the challenges that we face with policing, 21:45:35 there are so many good, brave police
officers who equally want reform. So we have to bring communities together in order to
begin working on that as a mutual goal. And we’ve got to get guns out of the hands of
people who should not have them. The gun epidemic is the leading cause of death
of young African- American men, more than the next nine causes put together. So we have
to do two things, as I said. We have to restore trust. We have to work with the police. We
have to make sure they respect the communities and the communities respect them. And we have
to tackle the plague of gun violence, which is a big contributor to a lot of the problems
that we’re seeing today. HOLT: All right, Mr. Trump, you have two minutes.
How do you heal the divide? TRUMP: Well, first of all, Secretary Clinton
doesn’t want to use a couple of words, and that’s law and order. And we need law and
order. If we don’t have it, we’re not going to have a country. And when I look at what’s going on in Charlotte,
a city I love, a city where I have investments, when I look at what’s going on throughout
various parts of our country, whether it’s — I mean, I can just keep naming them all
day long — we need law and order in our country. I just got today the, as you know, the endorsement
of the Fraternal Order of Police, we just — just came in. We have endorsements from,
I think, almost every police group, very — I mean, a large percentage of them in the United
States. We have a situation where we have our inner
cities, African- Americans, Hispanics are living in he’ll because it’s so dangerous.
You walk down the street, you get shot. 21:47:17 In Chicago, they’ve had thousands
of shootings, thousands since January 1st. Thousands of shootings. And I’m saying, where
is this? Is this a war-torn country? What are we doing? And we have to stop the violence.
We have to bring back law and order. In a place like Chicago, where thousands of people
have been killed, thousands over the last number of years, in fact, almost 4,000 have
been killed since Barack Obama became president, over — almost 4,000 people in Chicago have
been killed. We have to bring back law and order. Now, whether or not in a place like Chicago
you do stop and frisk, which worked very well, Mayor Giuliani is here, worked very well in
New York. It brought the crime rate way down. But you take the gun away from criminals that
shouldn’t be having it. We have gangs roaming the street. And in many
cases, they’re illegally here, illegal immigrants. And they have guns. And they shoot people.
And we have to be very strong. And we have to be very vigilant. We have to be — we have to know what we’re
doing. Right now, our police, in many cases, are afraid to do anything. We have to protect
our inner cities, because African-American communities are being decimated by crime,
decimated. HOLT: Your two — your two minutes expired,
but I do want to follow up. 21:48:38 Stop-and-frisk was ruled unconstitutional in New York, because
it largely singled out black and Hispanic young men. TRUMP: No, you’re wrong. It went before a
judge, who was a very against-police judge. It was taken away from her. And our mayor,
our new mayor, refused to go forward with the case. They would have won an appeal. If
you look at it, throughout the country, there are many places where it’s allowed. HOLT: The argument is that it’s a form of
racial profiling. TRUMP: No, the argument is that we have to
take the guns away from these people that have them and they are bad people that shouldn’t
have them. These are felons. These are people that are
bad people that shouldn’t be — 21:49:18 when you have 3,000 shootings in Chicago from January
1st, when you have 4,000 people killed in Chicago by guns, from the beginning of the
presidency of Barack Obama, his hometown, you have to have stop-and-frisk. You need more police. You need a better community,
you know, relation. You don’t have good community relations in Chicago. It’s terrible. I have
property there. It’s terrible what’s going on in Chicago. But when you look — and Chicago’s not the
only — you go to Ferguson, you go to so many different places. You need better relationships.
I agree with Secretary Clinton on this. TRUMP: You need better relationships between
the communities and the police, because in some cases, it’s not good. But you look at Dallas, where the relationships
were really studied, the relationships were really a beautiful thing, and then five police
officers were killed one night very violently. So there’s some bad things going on. Some
really bad things. HOLT: Secretary Clinton… TRUMP: But we need — Lester, we need law
and order. And we need law and order in the inner cities, because the people that are
most affected by what’s happening are African-American and Hispanic people. And it’s very unfair
to them what our politicians are allowing to happen. HOLT: Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: 21:50:36 Well, I’ve heard — I’ve
heard Donald say this at his rallies, and it’s really unfortunate that he paints such
a dire negative picture of black communities in our country. TRUMP: Ugh. CLINTON: You know, the vibrancy of the black
church, the black businesses that employ so many people, the opportunities that so many
families are working to provide for their kids. There’s a lot that we should be proud
of and we should be supporting and lifting up. But we do always have to make sure we keep
people safe. There are the right ways of doing it, and then there are ways that are ineffective.
Stop-and-frisk was found to be unconstitutional and, in part, because it was ineffective.
It did not do what it needed to do. Now, I believe in community policing. And,
in fact, violent crime is one-half of what it was in 1991. Property crime is down 40
percent. We just don’t want to see it creep back up. We’ve had 25 years of very good cooperation. But there were some problems, some unintended
consequences. Too many young African-American and Latino men ended up in jail for nonviolent
offenses. And it’s just a fact that if you’re a young African-American man and you do the
same thing as a young white man, you are more likely to be arrested, charged, convicted,
and incarcerated. So we’ve got to address the systemic racism in our criminal justice
system. 21:52:20 We cannot just say law and order. We have to say — we have to come forward
with a plan that is going to divert people from the criminal justice system, deal with
mandatory minimum sentences, which have put too many people away for too long for doing
too little. We need to have more second chance programs.
I’m glad that we’re ending private prisons in the federal system; I want to see them
ended in the state system. You shouldn’t have a profit motivation to fill prison cells with
young Americans. So there are some positive ways we can work on this. And I believe strongly that commonsense gun
safety measures would assist us. Right now — and this is something Donald has supported,
along with the gun lobby — right now, we’ve got too many military- style weapons on the
streets. In a lot of places, our police are outgunned. We need comprehensive background
checks, and we need to keep guns out of the hands of those who will do harm. And we finally need to pass a prohibition
on anyone who’s on the terrorist watch list from being able to buy a gun in our country.
21:53:39 If you’re too dangerous to fly, you are too dangerous to buy a gun. So there are
things we can do, and we ought to do it in a bipartisan way. HOLT: Secretary Clinton, last week, you said
we’ve got to do everything possible to improve policing, to go right at implicit bias. 21:53:50
Do you believe that police are implicitly biased against black people? CLINTON: Lester, I think implicit bias is
a problem for everyone, not just police. I think, unfortunately, too many of us in our
great country jump to conclusions about each other. And therefore, I think we need all
of us to be asking hard questions about, you know, why am I feeling this way? But when it comes to policing, since it can
have literally fatal consequences, I have said, in my first budget, we would put money
into that budget to help us deal with implicit bias by retraining a lot of our police officers. I’ve met with a group of very distinguished,
experienced police chiefs a few weeks ago. They admit it’s an issue. They’ve got a lot
of concerns. 21:54:38 Mental health is one of the biggest concerns, because now police
are having to handle a lot of really difficult mental health problems on the street. They want support, they want more training,
they want more assistance. And I think the federal government could be in a position
where we would offer and provide that. HOLT: Mr. Trump… TRUMP: I’d like to respond to that. HOLT: Please. TRUMP: First of all, I agree, and a lot of
people even within my own party want to give certain rights to people on watch lists and
no- fly lists. I agree with you. When a person is on a watch list or a no-fly list, and I
have the endorsement of the NRA, which I’m very proud of. These are very, very good people,
and they’re protecting the Second Amendment. But I think we have to look very strongly
at no-fly lists and watch lists. And when people are on there, even if they shouldn’t
be on there, we’ll help them, we’ll help them legally, we’ll help them get off. But I tend
to agree with that quite strongly. I do want to bring up the fact that you were
the one that brought up the words 21:55:33 super-predator about young black youth. And
that’s a term that I think was a — it’s — it’s been horribly met, as you know. I think you’ve
apologized for it. But I think it was a terrible thing to say. And when it comes to stop-and-frisk, you know,
you’re talking about takes guns away. Well, I’m talking about taking guns away from gangs
and people that use them. And I don’t think — I really don’t think you disagree with
me on this, if you want to know the truth. I think maybe there’s a political reason why
you can’t say it, but I really don’t believe — in New York City, stop-and-frisk, we had
2,200 murders, and stop-and-frisk brought it down to 500 murders. Five hundred murders
is a lot of murders. It’s hard to believe, 500 is like supposed to be good? But we went from 2,200 to 500. And it was
continued on by Mayor Bloomberg. And it was terminated by current mayor. But stop-and-
frisk had a tremendous impact on the safety of New York City. Tremendous beyond belief.
So when you say it has no impact, it really did. It had a very, very big impact. CLINTON: Well, it’s also fair to say, if we’re
going to talk about mayors, that under the current mayor, crime has continued to drop,
including murders. So there is… TRUMP: No, you’re wrong. You’re wrong. CLINTON: No, I’m not. TRUMP: Murders are up. All right. You check
it. CLINTON: New York — New York has done an
excellent job. And I give credit — I give credit across the board going back two mayors,
two police chiefs, because it has worked. And other communities need to come together
to do what will work, as well. Look, one murder is too many. But it is important
that we learn about what has been effective. And not go to things that sound good that
really did not have the kind of impact that we would want. Who disagrees with keeping
neighborhoods safe? But let’s also add, 21:57:30 no one should
disagree about respecting the rights of young men who live in those neighborhoods. And so
we need to do a better job of working, again, with the communities, faith communities, business
communities, as well as the police to try to deal with this problem. HOLT: This conversation is about race. And
so, Mr. Trump, I have to ask you for five… TRUMP: I’d like to just respond, if I might. HOLT: Please — 20 seconds. TRUMP: I’d just like to respond. HOLT: Please respond, then I’ve got a quick
follow-up for you. TRUMP: I will. Look, the African-American
community has been let down by our politicians. They talk good around election time, like
right now, and after the election, they said, see ya later, I’ll see you in four years. The African-American community — because
— look, the community within the inner cities has been so badly treated. They’ve been abused
and used in order to get votes by Democrat politicians, because that’s what it is. They’ve
controlled these communities for up to 100 years. HOLT: Mr. Trump, let me… (CROSSTALK) CLINTON: Well, I — I do think… TRUMP: And I will tell you, you look at the
inner cities — and I just left Detroit, and I just left Philadelphia, and I just — you
know, you’ve seen me, I’ve been all over the place. You decided to stay home, and that’s
OK. But I will tell you, I’ve been all over. And I’ve met some of the greatest people I’ll
ever meet within these communities. And they are very, very upset with what their politicians
have told them and what their politicians have done. HOLT: Mr. Trump, I… CLINTON: 21:58:53 I think — I think — I
think Donald just criticized me for preparing for this debate. And, yes, I did. And you
know what else I prepared for? I prepared to be president. 21:59:06 And I think that’s
a good thing. (APPLAUSE) HOLT: Mr. Trump, for five years, you perpetuated
a false claim that the nation’s first black president was not a natural-born citizen.
You questioned his legitimacy. In the last couple of weeks, you acknowledged what most
Americans have accepted for years: The president was born in the United States. Can you tell
us what took you so long? TRUMP: I’ll tell you very — well, just very
simple to say. Sidney Blumenthal works for the campaign and close — very close friend
of Secretary Clinton. And her campaign manager, Patti Doyle, went to — during the campaign,
her campaign against President Obama, fought very hard. And you can go look it up, and
you can check it out. TRUMP: And if you look at CNN this past week,
Patti Solis Doyle was on Wolf Blitzer saying that this happened. Blumenthal sent McClatchy,
highly respected reporter at McClatchy, to Kenya to find out about it. They were pressing
it very hard. She failed to get the birth certificate. When I got involved, I didn’t fail. I got
him to give the birth certificate. So I’m satisfied with it. And I’ll tell you why I’m
satisfied with it. HOLT: That was… (CROSSTALK) TRUMP: Because I want to get on to defeating
ISIS, because I want to get on to creating jobs, because I want to get on to having a
strong border, because I want to get on to things that are very important to me and that
are very important to the country. HOLT: I will let you respond. It’s important.
But I just want to get the answer here. The birth certificate was produced in 2011. You’ve
continued to tell the story and question the president’s legitimacy in 2012, ’13, ’14,
’15… TRUMP: Yeah. HOLT: …. as recently as January. So the
question is, what changed your mind? TRUMP: Well, nobody was pressing it, nobody
was caring much about it. I figured you’d ask the question tonight, of course. But nobody
was caring much about it. But I was the one that got him to produce the birth certificate.
And I think I did a good job. Secretary Clinton also fought it. I mean,
you know — now, everybody in mainstream is going to say, oh, that’s not true. Look, it’s
true. Sidney Blumenthal sent a reporter — you just have to take a look at CNN, the last
week, the interview with your former campaign manager. And she was involved. But just like
she can’t bring back jobs, she can’t produce. HOLT: I’m sorry. I’m just going to follow
up — and I will let you respond to that, because there’s a lot there. But we’re talking
about racial healing in this segment. What do you say to Americans, people of color who… (CROSSTALK) TRUMP: Well, it was very — I say nothing.
I say nothing, because I was able to get him to produce it. He should have produced it
a long time before. I say nothing. But let me just tell you. When you talk about
healing, I think that I’ve developed very, very good relationships over the last little
while with the African-American community. I think you can see that. And I feel that they really wanted me to come
to that conclusion. And I think I did a great job and a great service not only for the country,
but even for the president, in getting him to produce his birth certificate. HOLT: Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: Well, just listen to what you heard. (LAUGHTER) And clearly, as Donald just admitted, he knew
he was going to stand on this debate stage, and Lester Holt was going to be asking us
questions, so he tried to put the whole racist birther lie to bed. But it can’t be dismissed that easily. He
has really started his political activity based on this racist lie that our first black
president was not an American citizen. There was absolutely no evidence for it, but he
persisted, he persisted year after year, because some of his supporters, people that he was
trying to bring into his fold, apparently believed it or wanted to believe it. But, remember, Donald started his career back
in 1973 being sued by the Justice Department for racial discrimination because 22:03:18
he would not rent apartments in one of his developments to African-Americans, and he
made sure that the people who worked for him understood that was the policy. He actually
was sued twice by the Justice Department. So he has a long record of engaging in racist
behavior. And the birther lie was a very hurtful one. You know, Barack Obama is a man of great
dignity. And I could tell how much it bothered him and annoyed him that this was being touted
and used against him. But I like to remember what Michelle Obama
said in her amazing speech at our Democratic National Convention: When they go low, we
go high. And Barack Obama went high, despite Donald Trump’s best efforts to bring him down. HOLT: Mr. Trump, you can respond and we’re
going to move on to the next segment. TRUMP: I would love to respond. First of all,
I got to watch in preparing for this some of your debates against Barack Obama. You
treated him with terrible disrespect. And I watched the way you talk now about how lovely
everything is and how wonderful you are. It doesn’t work that way. You were after him,
you were trying to — you even sent out or your campaign sent out pictures of him in
a certain garb, very famous pictures. I don’t think you can deny that. But just last week, your campaign manager
said it was true. So when you tried to act 22:04:42 holier than thou, it really doesn’t
work. It really doesn’t. Now, as far as the lawsuit, yes, when I was
very young, I went into my father’s company, had a real estate company in Brooklyn and
Queens, and we, along with many, many other companies throughout the country — it was
a federal lawsuit — were sued. We settled the suit with zero — with no admission of
guilt. It was very easy to do. TRUMP: I notice you bring that up a lot. And,
you know, I also notice the very nasty commercials that you do on me in so many different ways,
which I don’t do on you. Maybe I’m trying to save the money. But, frankly, I look — I look at that, and
I say, isn’t that amazing? Because I settled that lawsuit with no admission of guilt, but
that was a lawsuit brought against many real estate firms, and it’s just one of those things. I’ll go one step further. In Palm Beach, Florida,
tough community, a brilliant community, a wealthy community, probably the wealthiest
community there is in the world, I opened a club, and really got great credit for it.
No discrimination against African- Americans, against Muslims, against anybody. And it’s
a tremendously successful club. And I’m so glad I did it. And I have been given great
credit for what I did. And I’m very, very proud of it. And that’s the way I feel. That
is the true way I feel. HOLT: Our next segment is called “Securing
America.” We want to start with a 21st century war happening every day in this country. Our
institutions are under cyber attack, and our secrets are being stolen. So my question is,
who’s behind it? And how do we fight it? Secretary Clinton, this answer goes to you. CLINTON: Well, I think cyber security, cyber
warfare will be one of the biggest challenges facing the next president, because clearly
we’re facing at this point two different kinds of adversaries. There are the independent
hacking groups that do it mostly for commercial reasons to try to steal information that they
can use to make money. 22:06:49 But increasingly, we are seeing cyber
attacks coming from states, organs of states. The most recent and troubling of these has
been Russia. There’s no doubt now that Russia has used cyber attacks against all kinds of
organizations in our country, and I am deeply concerned about this. I know Donald’s very
praiseworthy of Vladimir Putin, but Putin is playing a really… (CROSSTALK) CLINTON: … tough, long game here. And one
of the things he’s done is to let loose cyber attackers to hack into government files, to
hack into personal files, hack into the Democratic National Committee. And we recently have learned
that, you know, that this is one of their preferred methods of trying to wreak havoc
and collect information. We need to make it very clear — whether it’s Russia, China,
Iran or anybody else — the United States has much greater capacity. And we are not
going to sit idly by and permit state actors to go after our information, our private-sector
information or our public-sector information. And we’re going to have to make it clear that
we don’t want to use the kinds of tools that we have. We don’t want to engage in a different
kind of warfare. But we will defend the citizens of this country. And the Russians need to understand that.
I think they’ve been treating it as almost a probing, how far would we go, how much would
we do. And that’s why I was so — I was so shocked when Donald publicly 22:08:41 invited
Putin to hack into Americans. That is just unacceptable. It’s one of the reasons why
50 national security officials who served in Republican information — in administrations… HOLT: Your two minutes have expired. CLINTON: … have said that Donald is unfit
to be the commander- in-chief. It’s comments like that that really worry people who understand
the threats that we face. HOLT: Mr. Trump, you have two minutes and
the same question. Who’s behind it? And how do we fight it? TRUMP: I do want to say that I was just endorsed
— and more are coming next week — it will be over 200 admirals, many of them here — admirals
and generals endorsed me to lead this country. That just happened, and many more are coming.
And I’m very proud of it. In addition, I was just endorsed by ICE. They’ve
never endorsed anybody before on immigration. I was just endorsed by ICE. I was just recently
endorsed — 16,500 Border Patrol agents. So when Secretary Clinton talks about this,
I mean, I’ll take the admirals and I’ll take the generals any day over the political hacks
that I see that have led our country so brilliantly over the last 10 years with their knowledge.
OK? Because look at the mess that we’re in. Look at the mess that we’re in. As far as the cyber, I agree to parts of what
Secretary Clinton said. 22:09:52 We should be better than anybody else, and perhaps we’re
not. I don’t think anybody knows it was Russia that broke into the DNC. She’s saying Russia,
Russia, Russia, but I don’t — maybe it was. I mean, it could be Russia, but it could also
be China. It could also be lots of other people. It also could be somebody sitting on their
bed that weighs 400 pounds, OK? TRUMP: You don’t know who broke in to DNC. But what did we learn with DNC? We learned
that 22:10:29 Bernie Sanders was taken advantage of by your people, by Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
Look what happened to her. But Bernie Sanders was taken advantage of. That’s what we learned. Now, whether that was Russia, whether that
was China, whether it was another country, we don’t know, because the truth is, under
President Obama we’ve lost control of things that we used to have control over. We came in with the Internet, we came up with
the Internet, and I think Secretary Clinton and myself would agree very much, when you
look at what ISIS is doing with the Internet, they’re beating us at our own game. ISIS. So we have to get very, very tough on cyber
and cyber warfare. It is — it is a huge problem. I have a son. He’s 10 years old. He has computers.
He is so good with these computers, it’s unbelievable. The security aspect of cyber is very, very
tough. And maybe it’s hardly doable. But I will say, we are not doing the job we
should be doing. But that’s true throughout our whole governmental society. We have so
many things that we have to do better, Lester, and certainly cyber is one of them. HOLT: Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: Well, I think there are a number
of issues that we should be addressing. I have put forth a plan to defeat ISIS. It does
involve going after them online. I think we need to do much more with our tech companies
to prevent ISIS and their operatives from being able to use the Internet to radicalize,
even direct people in our country and Europe and elsewhere. But we also have to intensify our air strikes
against ISIS and eventually support our Arab and Kurdish partners to be able to actually
take out ISIS in Raqqa, end their claim of being a Caliphate. We’re making progress. Our military is assisting
in Iraq. And we’re hoping that within the year we’ll be able to push ISIS out of Iraq
and then, you know, really squeeze them in Syria. But we have to be cognizant of the fact that
they’ve had foreign fighters coming to volunteer for them, foreign money, foreign weapons,
22:12:35 so we have to make this the top priority. And I would also do everything possible to
take out their leadership. I was involved in a number of efforts to take out Al Qaida
leadership when I was secretary of state, including, of course, taking out bin Laden.
And I think we need to go after Baghdadi, as well, make that one of our organizing principles.
Because we’ve got to defeat ISIS, and we’ve got to do everything we can to disrupt their
propaganda efforts online. HOLT: You mention ISIS, and we think of ISIS
certainly as over there, but there are American citizens who have been inspired to commit
acts of terror on American soil, the latest incident, of course, the bombings we just
saw in New York and New Jersey, the knife attack at a mall in Minnesota, in the last
year, deadly attacks in San Bernardino and Orlando. I’ll ask this to both of you. Tell
us specifically how you would prevent homegrown attacks by American citizens, Mr. Trump? TRUMP: Well, first I have to say one thing,
very important. 22:13:32 Secretary Clinton is talking about taking out ISIS. “We will
take out ISIS.” Well, President Obama and Secretary Clinton created a vacuum the way
they got out of Iraq, because they got out — what, they shouldn’t have been in, but
once they got in, the way they got out was a disaster. And ISIS was formed. So she talks about taking them out. She’s
been doing it a long time. She’s been trying to take them out for a long time. But they
wouldn’t have even been formed if they left some troops behind, like 10,000 or maybe something
more than that. And then you wouldn’t have had them. Or, as I’ve been saying for a long time, and
I think you’ll agree, because I said it to you once, had we taken the oil — and we should
have taken the oil — ISIS would not have been able to form either, because the oil
was their primary source of income. And now they have the oil all over the place, including
the oil — a lot of the oil in Libya, which was another one of her disasters. HOLT: Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: 22:14:31 Well, I hope the fact-checkers
are turning up the volume and really working hard. Donald supported the invasion of Iraq. TRUMP: Wrong. CLINTON: That is absolutely proved over and
over again. TRUMP: Wrong. Wrong. CLINTON: He actually advocated for the actions
we took in Libya and urged that Gadhafi be taken out, after actually doing some business
with him one time. CLINTON: But the larger point — and he says
this constantly — is George W. Bush made the agreement about when American troops would
leave Iraq, not Barack Obama. And the only way that American troops could
have stayed in Iraq is to get an agreement from the then-Iraqi government that would
have protected our troops, and the Iraqi government would not give that. But let’s talk about the question you asked,
Lester. The question you asked is, what do we do here in the United States? That’s the
most important part of this. How do we prevent attacks? How do we protect our people? And I think we’ve got to have an intelligence
surge, where we are looking for every scrap of information. I was so proud of law enforcement
in New York, in Minnesota, in New Jersey. You know, they responded so quickly, so professionally
to the attacks that occurred by Rahami. And they brought him down. And we may find out
more information because he is still alive, which may prove to be an intelligence benefit. So we’ve got to do everything we can to vacuum
up intelligence from Europe, from the Middle East. That means we’ve got to work more closely
with our allies, and that’s something that Donald has been very dismissive of. We’re working with NATO, the longest military
alliance in the history of the world, to really turn our attention to terrorism. We’re working
with our friends in the Middle East, many of which, as you know, are Muslim majority
nations. Donald has consistently insulted Muslims abroad, Muslims at home, when we need
to be cooperating with Muslim nations and with the American Muslim community. They’re on the front lines. They can provide
information to us that we might not get anywhere else. They need to have close working cooperation
with law enforcement in these communities, not be alienated and pushed away as some of
Donald’s rhetoric, unfortunately, has led to. HOLT: Mr. Trump… TRUMP: Well, I have to respond. HOLT: Please respond. TRUMP: The secretary
said very strongly about working with — we’ve been working with them for many years, and
we have the greatest mess anyone’s ever seen. You look at the Middle East, it’s a total
mess. Under your direction, to a large extent. But you look at the Middle East, you started
the Iran deal, that’s another beauty where you have a country that was ready to fall,
I mean, they were doing so badly. They were choking on the sanctions. And now they’re
going to be actually probably a major power at some point pretty soon, the way they’re
going. But when you look at NATO, I was asked on
a major show, what do you think of NATO? And you have to understand, I’m a businessperson.
I did really well. But I have common sense. And I said, well, I’ll tell you. I haven’t
given lots of thought to NATO. But two things. Number one, the 28 countries of NATO, many
of them aren’t paying their fair share. Number two — and that bothers me, because we should
be asking — we’re defending them, and they should at least be paying us what they’re
supposed to be paying by treaty and contract. And, number two, I said, and very strongly,
NATO could be obsolete, because — and I was very strong on this, and it was actually covered
very accurately in the New York Times, which is unusual for the New York Times, to be honest
— but I said, they do not focus on terror. And I was very strong. And I said it numerous
times. And about four months ago, I read on the front
page of the Wall Street Journal that NATO is opening up a major terror division. And
I think that’s great. And I think we should get — because we pay approximately 73 percent
of the cost of NATO. It’s a lot of money to protect other people. But I’m all for NATO.
But I said they have to focus on terror, also. And they’re going to do that. And that was
— believe me — I’m sure I’m not going to get credit for it — but that was largely
because of what I was saying and my criticism of NATO. I think we have to get NATO to go into the
Middle East with us, in addition to surrounding nations, and we have to 22:19:03 knock the
hell out of ISIS, and we have to do it fast, when ISIS formed in this vacuum created by
Barack Obama and Secretary Clinton. And believe me, you were the ones that took out the troops.
Not only that, you named the day. They couldn’t believe it. They sat back probably and said,
I can’t believe it. They said… CLINTON: Lester, we’ve covered… TRUMP: No, wait a minute. CLINTON: We’ve covered this ground. TRUMP: When they formed, when they formed,
this is something that never should have happened. It should have never happened. Now, you’re
talking about taking out ISIS. But you were there, and you were secretary of state when
it was a little infant. Now it’s in over 30 countries. And you’re going to stop them?
I don’t think so. HOLT: Mr. Trump, a lot of these are judgment
questions. You had supported the war in Iraq before the invasion. What makes your… TRUMP: I did not support the war in Iraq. HOLT: In 2002… TRUMP: That is a mainstream media nonsense
put out by her, because she — frankly, I think the best person in her campaign is mainstream
media. HOLT: My question is, since you supported
it… TRUMP: Just — would you like to hear… HOLT: … why is your — why is your judgment… TRUMP: Wait a minute. I was against the war
in Iraq. Just so you put it out. HOLT: The record shows otherwise, but why
— why was… TRUMP: The record does not show that. HOLT: Why was — is your judgment any… TRUMP: The record shows that I’m right. When
I did an interview with Howard Stern, very lightly, first time anyone’s asked me that,
I said, very lightly, I don’t know, maybe, who knows? Essentially. I then did an interview
with Neil Cavuto. We talked about the economy is more important. I then spoke to Sean Hannity,
which everybody refuses to call Sean Hannity. I had numerous conversations with Sean Hannity
at Fox. And Sean Hannity said — and he called me the other day — and I spoke to him about
it — he said you were totally against the war, because he was for the war. HOLT: Why is your judgment better than… TRUMP: And when he — excuse me. And that
was before the war started. Sean Hannity said very strongly to me and other people — he’s
willing to say it, but nobody wants to call him. I was against the war. He said, you used
to have fights with me, because Sean was in favor of the war. And I understand that side, also, not very
much, because we should have never been there. But nobody called Sean Hannity. And then they
did an article in a major magazine, shortly after the war started. I think in ’04. But
they did an article which had me totally against the war in Iraq. And one of your compatriots said, you know,
whether it was before or right after, Trump was definitely — because if you read this
article, there’s no doubt. But if somebody — and I’ll ask the press — if somebody would
call up Sean Hannity, this was before the war started. He and I used to have arguments
about the war. I said, it’s a terrible and a stupid thing. It’s going to destabilize
the Middle East. And that’s exactly what it’s done. It’s been a disaster. HOLT: My reference was to what you had said
in 2002, and my question was… TRUMP: No, no. You didn’t hear what I said. HOLT: Why is your judgment — why is your
judgment any different than Mrs. Clinton’s judgment? TRUMP: 22:21:48 Well, I have much better judgment
than she does. There’s no question about that. I also have a much better temperament than
she has, you know? (LAUGHTER) I have a much better — she spent — let me
tell you — she spent hundreds of millions of dollars on an advertising — you know,
they get Madison Avenue into a room, they put names — oh, temperament, let’s go after
— I think my strongest asset, maybe by far, is my temperament. I have a winning temperament.
I know how to win. She does not have a… HOLT: Secretary Clinton? TRUMP: Wait. The AFL-CIO the other day, behind
the blue screen, I don’t know who you were talking to, Secretary Clinton, but you were
totally out of control. I said, there’s a person with a temperament that’s got a problem. HOLT: Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: Whew, OK. (LAUGHTER) Let’s talk about two important issues that
were briefly mentioned by Donald, first, NATO. You know, NATO as a military alliance has
something called Article 5, and basically it says this: An attack on one is an attack
on all. And you know the only time it’s ever been invoked? After 9/11, when the 28 nations
of NATO said that they would go to Afghanistan with us to fight terrorism, something that
they still are doing by our side. With respect to Iran, when I became secretary
of state, Iran was weeks away from having enough nuclear material to form a bomb. They
had mastered the nuclear fuel cycle under the Bush administration. They had built covert
facilities. They had stocked them with centrifuges that were whirling away. And we had sanctioned them. I voted for every
sanction against Iran when I was in the Senate, but it wasn’t enough. So I spent a year-and-a-half
putting together a coalition that included Russia and China to impose the toughest sanctions
on Iran. And we did drive them to the negotiating table.
And my successor, John Kerry, and President Obama got a deal that put a lid on Iran’s
nuclear program without firing a single shot. That’s diplomacy. That’s coalition-building.
That’s working with other nations. The other day, I saw Donald saying that there
were some Iranian sailors on a ship in the waters off of Iran, and they were taunting
American sailors who were on a nearby ship. He said, you know, if they taunted our sailors,
22:24:28 I’d blow them out of the water and start another war. That’s not good judgment. TRUMP: That would not start a war. CLINTON: That is not the right temperament
to be commander-in- chief, to be taunted. And the worst part… TRUMP: No, they were taunting us. CLINTON: … of what we heard Donald say has
been about nuclear weapons. He has said repeatedly that he didn’t care if other nations got nuclear
weapons, Japan, South Korea, even Saudi Arabia. It has been the policy of the United States,
Democrats and Republicans, to do everything we could to reduce the proliferation of nuclear
weapons. He even said, well, you know, if there were nuclear war in East Asia, well,
you know, that’s fine… TRUMP: Wrong. CLINTON: … have a good time, folks. TRUMP: It’s lies. CLINTON: And, in fact, his 22:25:17 cavalier
attitude about nuclear weapons is so deeply troubling. That is the number-one threat we
face in the world. And it becomes particularly threatening if terrorists ever get their hands
on any nuclear material. So a man who can be provoked by a tweet should not have his
fingers anywhere near the nuclear codes, as far as I think anyone with any sense about
this should be concerned. TRUMP: That line’s getting a little bit old,
I must say. I would like to… CLINTON: It’s a good one, though. It well
describes the problem. (LAUGHTER) TRUMP: It’s not an accurate one at all. It’s
not an accurate one. So I just want to give a lot of things — and just to respond. I
agree with her on one thing. The single greatest problem the world has is nuclear armament,
nuclear weapons, 22:26:04 not global warming, like you think and your — your president
thinks. Nuclear is the single greatest threat. Just
to go down the list, we defend Japan, we defend Germany, we defend South Korea, we defend
Saudi Arabia, we defend countries. They do not pay us. But they should be paying us,
because we are providing tremendous service and we’re losing a fortune. That’s why we’re
losing — we’re losing — we lose on everything. I say, who makes these — we lose on everything.
All I said, that it’s very possible that if they don’t pay a fair share, because this
isn’t 40 years ago where we could do what we’re doing. We can’t defend Japan, a behemoth,
selling us cars by the million… HOLT: We need to move on. TRUMP: Well, wait, but it’s very important.
All I said was, they may have to defend themselves or they have to help us out. We’re a country
that owes $20 trillion. They have to help us out. HOLT: Our last… TRUMP: As far as the nuclear is concerned,
I agree. It is the single greatest threat that this country has. HOLT: Which leads to my next question, as
we enter our last segment here (inaudible) the subject of securing America. On nuclear
weapons, President Obama reportedly considered changing the nation’s longstanding policy
on first use. Do you support the current policy? Mr. Trump, you have two minutes on that. TRUMP: Well, I have to say that, you know,
for what Secretary Clinton was saying about nuclear with Russia, she’s very cavalier in
the way she talks about various countries. But Russia has been expanding their — they
have a much newer capability than we do. We have not been updating from the new standpoint. I looked the other night. I was seeing B-52s,
they’re old enough that your father, your grandfather could be flying them. We are not
— we are not keeping up with other countries. I would like everybody to end it, just get
rid of it. But I would certainly not do first strike. I think that once the nuclear alternative
happens, it’s over. At the same time, we have to be prepared. I can’t take anything off
the table. Because you look at some of these countries, you look at North Korea, we’re
doing nothing there. China should solve that problem for us. 22:28:09 China should go into
North Korea. China is totally powerful as it relates to North Korea. And by the way, another one powerful is the
worst deal I think I’ve ever seen negotiated that you started is the Iran deal. Iran is
one of their biggest trading partners. Iran has power over North Korea. And when they made that horrible deal with
Iran, they should have included the fact that they do something with respect to North Korea.
And they should have done something with respect to Yemen and all these other places. And when asked to Secretary Kerry, why didn’t
you do that? Why didn’t you add other things into the deal? One of the great giveaways
of all time, of all time, including $400 million in cash. Nobody’s ever seen that before. That
turned out to be wrong. It was actually $1.7 billion in cash, obviously, I guess for the
hostages. It certainly looks that way. So you say to yourself, why didn’t they make
the right deal? This is one of the worst deals ever made by any country in history. The deal
with Iran will lead to nuclear problems. All they have to do is sit back 10 years, and
they don’t have to do much. HOLT: Your two minutes is expired. TRUMP: And they’re going to end up getting
nuclear. I met with Bibi Netanyahu the other day. Believe me, he’s not a happy camper. HOLT: All right. Mrs. Clinton, Secretary Clinton,
you have two minutes. CLINTON: 22:29:30 Well, let me — let me start
by saying, words matter. Words matter when you run for president. And they really matter
when you are president. And I want to reassure our allies in Japan and South Korea and elsewhere
that we have mutual defense treaties and we will honor them. It is essential that America’s word be good.
And so I know that this campaign has caused some questioning and worries on the part of
many leaders across the globe. I’ve talked with a number of them. But I want to — on
behalf of myself, and I think on behalf of a majority of the American people, say that,
you know, our word is good. It’s also important that we look at the entire
global situation. There’s no doubt that we have other problems with Iran. But personally,
I’d rather deal with the other problems having put that lid on their nuclear program than
still to be facing that. And Donald never tells you what he would do.
Would he have started a war? Would he have bombed Iran? If he’s going to criticize a
deal that has been very successful in giving us access to Iranian facilities that we never
had before, then he should tell us what his alternative would be. But it’s like his plan
to defeat ISIS. He says it’s a secret plan, but the only secret is that he has no plan. 22:31:04 So we need to be more precise in
how we talk about these issues. People around the word follow our presidential campaigns
so closely, trying to get hints about what we will do. Can they rely on us? Are we going
to lead the world with strength and in accordance with our values? That’s what I intend to do.
I intend to be a leader of our country that people can count on, both here at home and
around the world, to make decisions that will further peace and prosperity, but also stand
up to bullies, whether they’re abroad or at home. We cannot let those who would try to destabilize
the world to interfere with American interests and security… HOLT: Your two minutes is… CLINTON: … to be given any opportunities
at all. HOLT: … is expired. TRUMP: Lester, one thing I’d like to say. HOLT: Very quickly. Twenty seconds. TRUMP: I will go very quickly. But I will
tell you that Hillary will tell you to go to her website and read all about how to defeat
ISIS, which she could have defeated by never having it, you know, get going in the first
place. Right now, it’s getting tougher and tougher to defeat them, because they’re in
more and more places, more and more states, more and more nations. HOLT: Mr. Trump… TRUMP: And it’s a big problem. And as far
as Japan is concerned, I want to help all of our allies, but we are losing billions
and billions of dollars. We cannot be the policemen of the world. We cannot protect
countries all over the world… HOLT: We have just… TRUMP: … where they’re not paying us what
we need. HOLT: We have just a few final questions… TRUMP: And she doesn’t say that, because she’s
got no business ability. We need heart. We need a lot of things. But you have to have
some basic ability. And sadly, she doesn’t have that. All of the things that she’s talking
about could have been taken care of during the last 10 years, let’s say, while she had
great power. But they weren’t taken care of. And if she ever wins this race, they won’t
be taken care of. HOLT: Mr. Trump, this year Secretary Clinton
became the 22:32:57 first woman nominated for president by a major party. Earlier this
month, you said she doesn’t have, quote, “a presidential look.” She’s standing here right
now. What did you mean by that? TRUMP: She doesn’t have the look. She doesn’t
have the stamina. I said she doesn’t have the stamina. And I don’t believe she does
have the stamina. To be president of this country, you need tremendous stamina. HOLT: The quote was, “I just don’t think she
has the presidential look.” TRUMP: You have — wait a minute. Wait a minute,
Lester. You asked me a question. Did you ask me a question? You have to be able to negotiate our trade
deals. You have to be able to negotiate, that’s right, with Japan, with Saudi Arabia. I mean,
can you imagine, we’re defending Saudi Arabia? And with all of the money they have, we’re
defending them, and they’re not paying? All you have to do is speak to them. Wait. You
have so many different things you have to be able to do, and I don’t believe that Hillary
has the stamina. HOLT: Let’s let her respond. CLINTON: 22:33:52 Well, as soon as he travels
to 112 countries and negotiates a peace deal, a cease-fire, a release of dissidents, an
opening of new opportunities in nations around the world, or even spends 11 hours testifying
in front of a congressional committee, he can talk to me about stamina. (APPLAUSE) TRUMP: The world — let me tell you. Let me
tell you. Hillary has experience, but it’s bad experience. We have made so many bad deals
during the last — so she’s got experience, that I agree. (APPLAUSE) But it’s bad, bad experience. Whether it’s
the Iran deal that you’re so in love with, where we gave them $150 billion back, whether
it’s the Iran deal, whether it’s anything you can — name — you almost can’t name a
good deal. I agree. She’s got experience, but it’s bad experience. And this country
can’t afford to have another four years of that kind of experience. HOLT: We are at — we are at the final question. (APPLAUSE) CLINTON: Well, one thing. One thing, Lester. HOLT: Very quickly, because we’re at the final
question now. CLINTON: You know, he tried to switch from
looks to stamina. But this is a man who has called women pigs, slobs and dogs, and someone
who has said pregnancy is an inconvenience to employers, who has said… TRUMP: I never said that. CLINTON: …. women don’t deserve equal pay
unless they do as good a job as men. TRUMP: I didn’t say that. CLINTON: And one of the worst things he said
was about a woman in a beauty contest. He loves beauty contests, supporting them and
hanging around them. And he called this woman 22:35:35 “Miss Piggy.” Then he called her
“Miss Housekeeping,” because she was Latina. Donald, she has a name. TRUMP: Where did you find this? Where did
you find this? CLINTON: Her name is Alicia Machado. TRUMP: Where did you find this? CLINTON: And she has become a U.S. citizen,
and you can bet… TRUMP: Oh, really? CLINTON: … she’s going
to vote this November. TRUMP: OK, good. Let me just tell you… (APPLAUSE) HOLT: Mr. Trump, could we just take 10 seconds
and then we ask the final question… TRUMP: You know, Hillary is hitting me with
tremendous commercials. Some of it’s said in entertainment. Some of it’s said — somebody
who’s been very vicious to me, Rosie O’Donnell, I said very tough things to her, and I think
everybody would agree that she deserves it and nobody feels sorry for her. But you want to know the truth? I was going
to say something… HOLT: Please very quickly. TRUMP: … extremely rough to Hillary, to
her family, and I said to myself, “I can’t do it. I just can’t do it. It’s inappropriate.
It’s not nice.” But she spent hundreds of millions of dollars on negative ads on me,
many of which are absolutely untrue. They’re untrue. And they’re misrepresentations. And I will tell you this, Lester: It’s not
nice. And I don’t deserve that. 22:36:42 But it’s certainly not a nice thing
that she’s done. It’s hundreds of millions of ads. And the only gratifying thing is,
I saw the polls come in today, and with all of that money… HOLT: We have to move on to the final question. TRUMP: … $200 million is spent, and I’m
either winning or tied, and I’ve spent practically nothing. (APPLAUSE) HOLT: One of you will not win this election.
So my final question to you tonight, are you willing to accept the outcome as the will
of the voters? Secretary Clinton? CLINTON: Well, I support our democracy. And
sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. But I certainly will support the outcome of this
election. And I know Donald’s trying very hard to plant
doubts about it, but I hope the people out there understand: This election’s really up
to you. It’s not about us so much as it is about you and your families and the kind of
country and future you want. So I sure hope you will get out and vote as though your future
depended on it, because I think it does. HOLT: Mr. Trump, very quickly, same question.
Will you accept the outcome as the will of the voters? TRUMP: I want to make America
great again. We are a nation that is seriously troubled. We’re losing our jobs. People are
pouring into our country. The other day, we were deporting 800 people.
And perhaps they passed the wrong button, they pressed the wrong button, or perhaps
worse than that, it was corruption, but these people that we were going to deport for good
reason ended up becoming citizens. Ended up becoming citizens. And it was 800. And now
it turns out it might be 1,800, and they don’t even know. HOLT: Will you accept the outcome of the election? TRUMP: Look, here’s the story. I want to make
America great again. I’m going to be able to do it. I don’t believe Hillary will. The
answer is, if she wins, I will absolutely support her. (APPLAUSE) HOLT: All right. Well, that is going to do
it for us. That concludes our debate for this evening, a spirit one. We covered a lot of
ground, 22:38:33 not everything as I suspected we would. The next presidential debates are scheduled
for October 9th at Washington University in St. Louis and October 19th at the University
of Nevada Las Vegas. The conversation will continue. A reminder. The vice presidential debate is
scheduled for October 4th at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia. My thanks to Hillary
Clinton and to Donald Trump and to Hofstra University for hosting us tonight. Good night,
everyone. 22:38:58 GWEN IFILL: And that concludes the first debate
between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. We watched them there on the stage. Joining Gwen Ifill and me here in our studio
for some analysis, syndicated columnist Mark Shields, New York Times columnist David Brooks,
and Amy Walter of The Cook Political Report. Mark Shields, they did cover a lot of ground,
from jobs to taxes, from race to ISIS, and just now women. What did you make of it all? MARK SHIELDS: I think that, first of all,
Donald Trump made it about him, rather than about the American people. I think that was missing in his message. And
I really think that he is remarkable political figure, in that, if you think about American
presidents, whether it’s Ronald Reagan or John Kennedy or Barack Obama or Franklin Roosevelt,
there was always an optimism to them. That is a very dark and rather dreary message,
that we’re surrounded by people who are not simply incompetent, but who are cutting deals,
who have conflicts of interest. If — Hillary Clinton, I thought was Hillary
Clinton. She was factual. She was well-organized in her thinking, not particularly likable,
did not come across as — did not reveal much about herself, other that anecdote about her
dad again and the nod to the grandchild at the opening. I really thought Trump did — failed his test
of presidential… GWEN IFILL: And as we watch the families come
on stage, as is typical after these debates, the Clintons, former President Bill Clinton
and Hillary Clinton, of course. And Chelsea Clinton is there as well. And on the other half of the stage, Melania
and Donald Trump, his sons, his daughters, others. Now, Amy, we — I counted — we counted it
up. Hillary Clinton referred to Donald Trump by his first name, Donald — most people call
him Mr. Trump — 22 times. She clearly had it in her mind that she wanted to get under
his skin, to bug him. Did it work? AMY WALTER: Well, he was on the defensive
much more than he was on the offense in this debate, whether it was on question of the
birtherism, on his taxes, his support for the Iraq War, the debate about women, and
his things he said about women, about stamina. This was a debate in which she was able — and
I think that Mark is completely right. Trump made it about himself, but she helped him
to make it about himself. Look, she didn’t provide the vision. I think
that there are a lot of folks, even on the Democratic side, looking for that sense of,
what is the bigger message of Hillary Clinton? She’s very smart. She has all of the facts
outlined. She has all the policy papers up on her Web site. But the bigger, sort of cohesive vision for
where we take America, I just — I don’t know that we still saw that in this debate. JUDY WOODRUFF: David, how do you see this?
Did either one of them do what they needed to do tonight? DAVID BROOKS: Well, it wasn’t — if what they
needed to do was make me feel better about the country, they failed. It was the opposite
of elevating on both sides. I thought, for the first half-hour, that Donald
Trump was winning. And I thought that was because, he may be obnoxious, but he is a
change agent. And the first half-hour was on his turf. And her answers, Hillary Clinton’s answers,
went it was on — gets to policy, it can’t just be three things. It has to be 16 things.
And you get in laundry list mode. Then she started attacking him. And she had
two devastatingly good answers, on the birther issue and the tax return issue, which were
really good assaults on him. So, even though she’s not good at describing a policy, she’s
really good at going after him. And then the debate got on, and Donald Trump
became Donald Trump. And with every answer, it was digging it a little deeper. His birther
answer was abysmal, and bunch of bad answers all in a row. The race issue was terrible,
the looks issue, bad. And so he just — at his lack of preparation,
and, frankly, a lot of his policies and his character just got worse and worse and worse.
So, I think you would have to say this was a Clinton night. GWEN IFILL: John Yang is in — at Hofstra
University for us tonight. He’s at the site of tonight’s debate. And I’m wondering what the scene is like there,
John, how it’s going over. JOHN YANG: Well, I tell you, the spinners
are just coming out. I’m just in front of the Donald Trump holding room. You can see them coming by here. Before, Senator
Claire McCaskill came by. She’s obviously a supporter of Secretary Clinton. She was
telling me that she felt — and this is sort of the line coming out of their — the Clinton
room tonight — that Donald Trump, once again, they say, showed that he wasn’t prepared to
be president. They say that this was — they say that it
came right from the top, when the secretary was able to give what they say — what they’re
saying was a coherent policy about providing jobs in America. But he wasn’t. I tried to — Governor Christie went by, wouldn’t
stop. I’m trying to see if I can get someone from the Trump campaign to get their reaction. But, so far, that’s what we have gotten so
far. GWEN IFILL: OK, John, we’re going to let you
keep searching for people in the room to talk to. And we will get back to you. JUDY WOODRUFF: And, Mark, I want to come to
you, because was there any — David was saying that Donald Trump did better in the first
half-hour, when they talked about jobs, and he talked about jobs leaving the country.
Did Hillary Clinton ever have an answer to that? MARK SHIELDS: Well, I thought — I mean, she
was defensive. There’s no question about it. She was defensive on the TPP. But her answer that there were more manufacturing
jobs — she did the defense of her husband’s economic record, not a very — a rather tepid
defense. There was a hell of a defense to be made for Bill Clinton’s eight years of
22 million jobs and the lowest unemployment rates for African-Americans in the history
of the country, balancing the budget. She did — she just said more manufacturing
jobs in the ’90s. But I want to say, in defense of Trump, and
not to be totally — I have never heard a presidential candidate — and I have heard
40 of them — say, I’m extremely underleveraged. (LAUGHTER) MARK SHIELDS: I mean, that was a rather remarkable
statement, if you think about it. And when he talked about not paying taxes,
he said, it would be squandered, too. That’s why he didn’t pay any taxes. And I thought
those were — the explanation, the one that will be most memorable, was that, who hacked
the DNC? It wasn’t Russia. Could have been Russia. Could have been China. Could have
been some other country, or it could have been someone sitting on the bed that weighs
400 pounds. I don’t know if the bed weighs 400 pounds
or the person weighs 400 pounds. (LAUGHTER) GWEN IFILL: And that is your definition of
“in defense of Donald Trump”? MARK SHIELDS: That was it. That was it. GWEN IFILL: Just checking. DAVID BROOKS: He touched me. I’m underleveraged
myself. (CROSSTALK) (LAUGHTER) GWEN IFILL: Can we talk a little bit about
the line of questioning on race? Because when — I never heard presidential
candidate in the debate call the person that he or she is running against, use the word
racist, three times. And also, when he was asked about race, Donald Trump talked about
law and order. What were the dog whistles in the room? Or
maybe they weren’t even dog whistles. Everybody could hear them. AMY WALTER: Yes. Donald Trump’s answer, whenever there’s an
issue on — whether it’s on race, whether it’s on policing, whether it’s on terrorism,
he always comes back to, it’s all about law and order. We’re going to get the police.
We’re going to get stuff done, because that’s how things work. And we also know that that is an answer that
is not a comfortable answer for many people in the African-American community and in — among
nonwhite voters, about who gets profiled when we have stop and frisk programs, when we have
law and order, what that actually means. These were questions that were not the kinds
of questions that Donald Trump answers particularly well. But that’s not who he’s playing to.
We talked about this a lot during the convention. Throughout this — throughout the convention,
throughout this debate, Donald Trump talked to the same people he’s been talking to this
entire campaign. There are a group of voters out there who are white, who are working class
who he’s done very, very well with. And those are voters he expects to take him all the
way throughout this election. And he’s not interested in reaching out and
getting beyond that base. JUDY WOODRUFF: You know, David, picking up
what Amy is saying, it seems to me that much of this debate was on territory where Donald
Trump is uncomfortable, I mean, the whole birther question. Lester Holt raised that.
He pushed Donald Trump on that. He pushed him on his tax returns, which we have been
talking about. These were areas where Donald Trump was back
against the ropes. DAVID BROOKS: Yes. I do think Holt was tougher on Trump than
on Clinton. Maybe there’s more to work with there. And he certainly exposed some vulnerabilities.
The defense that “I have a country club in Palm Beach which allows in minorities,” that’s
not — that is not your good defense. But… GWEN IFILL: Trump is apparently already tweeting
that there weren’t good questions about e-mails, about Benghazi… DAVID BROOKS: Right. JUDY WOODRUFF: And the Clinton Foundation. DAVID BROOKS: And somewhat fair, actually. But here is way think it’s going to happen.
I think he really looked bad on some of the — especially some of the racial stuff, on
the gender stuff, a lot of stuff. And so I think we can expect his polls to
drop as after the convention season. But, as Amy said, that’s not his audience. And,
two, he is thematically so consistent. We are under assault, we’re under assault, we’re
under assault. And it wouldn’t surprise me if he then — his
numbers then began to go up, as they have in the last couple weeks, with all this stuff.
He’s already said all this before. GWEN IFILL: I might also add that, if you
want to know, we have been keeping track of the things that were true, the things that
were false that were said tonight on our Web site, PBS.org/NewsHour. Just go there and
find what all of our experts, including our own — well, Margaret Warner, our own Paul
Solman are telling — answering these questions. JUDY WOODRUFF: Pulling it together. GWEN IFILL: But facts — facts seemed to be
an important issue here than — or lack thereof, tonight, Mark. And that was also Hillary Clinton’s
turf. MARK SHIELDS: Yes. No, that’s where she is. But she can’t give a short answer. That is
a real problem. There is a little bit of, let me tell you how much I know. And I — I
don’t even know the capital of Sweden, but I can tell you what the principal products
of Sweden are and how long, you know, Stockholm — and I think that is — but I have — again,
there are moments in the debate which I think we can’t ignore. And that is, “You don’t learn a lot from the
tax returns, that, I can tell you,” explaining why he hasn’t released his own taxes, and
said paying no federal taxes makes me smart. Now, I’m sorry. I mean, the cops and E-4s
in the Marine Corps and schoolteachers and registered nurses who pay taxes every year,
I don’t know if not paying taxes for the two years that he has on the record is a recommendation. (CROSSTALK) DAVID BROOKS: I would agree with you, if the
Republican debates hadn’t happened. And maybe it’s just the Republican audiences
are different. But the rules are a little different this year. And a lot of things where
he says, I’m smart, I got away with this, I do think that has some resonance in a country
of high-end social distrust. And I do think some of the rules are a little different applying
to him. MARK SHIELDS: Do you think those respectable
people who have come to him in the last few weeks, I mean, the thoughtful, have been kind
of overlooking it? Do you think they were made comfortable tonight? (CROSSTALK) DAVID BROOKS: Total squirming. Total squirming. (CROSSTALK) AMY WALTER: Yes. And that’s really the question:
Did he pass the judgment test? But to the point of — which I don’t know
that he was able to pass the judgment, temperament test. I don’t think that that was — he gets
high marks on that. But on the question about where the country
feels that we’re going, we’re pretty evenly divided between whether — and this is the
Wall Street Journal poll — is our country losing ground or is our country making progress?
Forty-eight percent say losing ground. Forty-five percent say making progress. Not surprisingly, among white Americans, plus-11
losing ground, among nonwhite Americans, plus-28 making progress. And so when you see these candidates literally
talking past each other, as you pointed out, on race issues, on so many other issues about
where we’re going… GWEN IFILL: Taxes. AMY WALTER: … on taxes, it’s literally we
have a country that is seeing the direction that we’re going in completely differently. JUDY WOODRUFF: I think all three of you were
saying before the debate that Hillary Clinton tonight needed to be more likable. She needed
to — Mark, what was your term? She needed to… MARK SHIELDS: At the end of it, say, not a
bad egg. JUDY WOODRUFF: Not a bad egg. (CROSSTALK) MARK SHIELDS: Like to have in the carpool. JUDY WOODRUFF: But she did she do that tonight? MARK SHIELDS: In the PTA meeting. JUDY WOODRUFF: Did that happen or not? MARK SHIELDS: No. I don’t think — I don’t
think — she wasn’t unlikable, but she certainly — there wasn’t any… AMY WALTER: What? MARK SHIELDS: There wasn’t any point in which
you got a peek into her — who she is, what makes her tick. GWEN IFILL: I never hear anybody ask whether
Donald Trump is likable. MARK SHIELDS: Oh, sure we do. GWEN IFILL: Yes? MARK SHIELDS: Yes. GWEN IFILL: Yes? MARK SHIELDS: And he’s thoroughly unlikable. (CROSSTALK) DAVID BROOKS: It’s not really an open question. GWEN IFILL: Oh, I see. Oh, I see. (CROSSTALK) MARK SHIELDS: Well, the Wall Street Journal/NBC
poll, to come back to what Amy was just talking about, he started 28/59 favorable/unfavorable,
and now he’s at 29. JUDY WOODRUFF: We’re going quickly back to
Hofstra university in New York. Our John Yang is there. John, you have maybe found a Trump person? GWEN IFILL: Hi, John. JOHN YANG: I have got — we have been talking
to some of the Trump supporters here now. They think — and the one point that they
have been repeating over and over again is the point, actually, that he repeated over
and over again in the debate, was hitting at Clinton as a career politician, that reinforcing
this idea that he’s the — that career politicians like Hillary Clinton are the reason for the
problems we’re seeing now. That’s been a signature line of his campaign
and, in many ways, one reason for a lot of the support of the campaign. And that’s what
we’re hearing over and over again from the Trump supporters here tonight. GWEN IFILL: In fact, John, that was one of
the big lines tonight, which is that she has experience, but it’s bad experience, right?
And so they are picking up on that. JOHN YANG: Right. JUDY WOODRUFF: So — and, John, thank you. (CROSSTALK) JUDY WOODRUFF: Go ahead. JOHN YANG: No, go ahead. JUDY WOODRUFF: I was just going to bring it
back here and say to David, is that effective? Is that something that sticks that he keeps
repeating? DAVID BROOKS: I think it does, actually. If you looked at her, just take him out of
the debate, she does look like a career politician. She does repeat a lot of things. She doesn’t
quite make human convention — connection. And in year that’s very unusual, she’s not
that unusual. But I thought she did fine, and with some
devastatingly good assaults. But, again, as Mark said, he was the subject. And he did
negative. AMY WALTER: Well, and that’s been the theme
throughout this campaign, right? Wherever the spotlight goes, if it’s placed
on you, the candidate, you are likely to drop in the polls. When the spotlight gets to the
other candidate — because this race has just simply been a referendum on who the worst
candidate is, right? And so when it — if it goes to the spotlight
now on Donald Trump and how much he was on defense, it’s not going to be how well Clinton
did as much as how poorly he did. And if it goes over to Hillary Clinton, then she becomes
the focus. Her numbers suffer. And at the end of the day, the candidate who
wins is the candidate who doesn’t get in that spotlight for the last couple of weeks. GWEN IFILL: Let me ask a question about just
one big policy issue that he seemed to land a few blows on. And that was on trade, when
he kind of basically made the point that she had changed her mind. And he drove that point
home. MARK SHIELDS: He did. (CROSSTALK) MARK SHIELDS: The question I had, as he was
doing that, was — are his interruptions a sign of strength or obnoxiousness? But he — there’s no question, he dominated
the dialogue. She was very much playing defense in the first part there. JUDY WOODRUFF: But, as David said, in the
first half-hour, it seemed to be that he was getting the better of a couple of points. But then, as we moved into the debate, it
seemed to me Hillary Clinton felt more comfortable coming after him and sticking with some… (CROSSTALK) MARK SHIELDS: Yes, she baited him. There’s
no question. AMY WALTER: Oh, yes. The Donald was baited. And he not, in that
sense, go after her the way I thought he would. I thought his own defense of his positions
was really faulty. GWEN IFILL: Well, time for all three of you
to ask — really quick answers. AMY WALTER: Uh-oh. GWEN IFILL: Expectations in advance, did they
meet your expectations afterward? AMY WALTER: Yes, they did. GWEN IFILL: OK. Mark? MARK SHIELDS: No. (LAUGHTER) MARK SHIELDS: My expectations have never been
met. No. JUDY WOODRUFF: We may ask you this question
again tomorrow. David? DAVID BROOKS: Not a kamikaze night for him.
So, it’s not a career-ender, not a campaign-ender, but not a good night. GWEN IFILL: All right. I think I gave you,
like, one word. AMY WALTER: Yes. But I can say — yes, agree that it was a
better night for Hillary Clinton, but it does not feel like it was the defining end-all,
be-all of this campaign. JUDY WOODRUFF: And, hey, we have only got
six weeks to go. GWEN IFILL: You know what that means. We are
going to have to come back and do it again right here at this table, maybe October 4
for the vice presidential debate. That concludes our coverage of the first presidential
debate, but there’s whole lot more, as we were saying, online. You can watch highlights.
Plus, see how “NewsHour” staff, from Margaret Warner to Paul Solman, as you were saying,
and more put what the candidates said in context. That’s all at PBS.org/NewsHour. I’m Gwen Ifill. JUDY WOODRUFF: And I’m Judy Woodruff. And join us right here for the “NewsHour”
tomorrow night. For all of us at the “PBS NewsHour,” thank
you, and good night.

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