DEMOCRATS IN CRISIS?

We take a look at the big decision moderate Democrats in swing districts face as the impeachment inquiry plays out.

Aired on October 30, 2019. 

TRANSCRIPT

> WITH PRESIDENT TRUMP FACING POSSIBLE IMPEACHMENT, MODERATE DEMOCRATS IN SWING DISTRICTS ARE CONFRONTED WITH A DIFFICULT DECISION.

SHOULD THEY OPPOSE THE IMPEACHMENT OF A PRESIDENT FOR WHOM A MAJORITY OF THEIR CONSTITUENTS VOTED IN 2016, OR SHOULD THEY SUPPORT THE IMPEACHMENT PROCESS AND POSSIBLY PUT THEIR POLITICAL FUTURES AT RISK.

MIKIE SHERRILL HAS DECIDED TO BACK THE INQUIRY.

SHE'S PART OF DEMOCRATIC LAWMAKERS IN SWING DISTRICTS WHO URGE CONGRESS TO FIND OUT IF PRESIDENT TRUMP ABUSED HIS POWER WHILE DEALING WITH UKRAINE.

SHE SPOKE ABOUT HER DECISION.

TO SEE THAT WE HAVE A PRESIDENT WHO HAS GONE TO THE HEAD OF A COUNTRY FIGHTING A WAR WITH RUSSIA AND WITHHELD CRITICAL ARMAMENTS AND THEN PRESSURED THAT PRESIDENT OF UKRAINE TO INVESTIGATE COMPETITOR OF THE PRESIDENT IN THE ELECTION REALLY CROSSED A LINE FOR ME ANDNS NATIONAL SECURITY AT HOME.

AND JOINING US NOW IS STATE OF AFFAIRS ANCHOR STEVE ADUBATO.

CONGRESSWOMAN SHERRILL KIND OF EXPLAINED WHY SHE DID WHAT SHE DID.

I WONDER IF YOU CAN ELABORATE ON THAT AND TELL US WHAT KIND OF CONSEQUENCES SHE MAY BE FACING.

SHE'S THE FIRST DEMOCRAT TO REPRESENT THAT DISTRICT IN DECADES.

REPUBLICANS HAVE WON IT.

HERE'S MY VIEW OF IT.

I ACTUALLY INTERVIEWED MIKIE SHERRILL SOON AFTER SHE TOOK OFFICE AND WHEN I ASKED HER ABOUT THE QUESTION OF THE PRESIDENT, SHE WAS LIKE NO, TOO SOON, IT'S GOING TO DISTRACT US FROM WHAT WE NEED TO DO.

EXACTLY WHY SHE'S DOING THIS.R B LET'S REMEMBER, SHE'S A VETERAN.

SHE SERVED IN THE NAVY.

SHE WAS A FIGHTER PILOT.

SHE TOOK AN OATH.

SHE SAID I TOOK TWO OATHS, ONE IN CONGRESS, THE OTHER TO DEFEND OUR COUNTRY.

I BELIEVE SHE BELIEVES THAT WHAT THE PRESIDENT HAS DONE HERE AND THAT TRANSCRIPT OF THAT CONVERSATION AND WHAT HAS HAPPENED SINCE THEN HAS CAUSED HER TO HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO DO WHAT SHE'S DOING.

AND SHE'S ALSO LED OTHERS TO GO ALONG WITH HER BECAUSE I THINK A LOT OF THESE OTHER MODERATE DEMOCRATS WOULD NOT BE WHERE WE ARE IF NOT FOR CONGRESSWOMAN SHERRILL.

LET'S TALK ABOUT THE DISTRICT.

YOU SAY THE DISTRICT FOR DECADES HAS BEEN UNDER REPUBLICAN CONTROL, 35 YEARS TO BE PRECISE.

THAT'S RIGHT.

LET'S BREAK IT DOWN.

NOT TO TAKE ANYTHING AWAY FROM HER BECAUSE SHE DIDN'T HAVE TO DO THIS.

NO, SHE DIDN'T.

BUT IN THOSE 35 YEARS IT WAS TWO REPUBLICANS WHO SERVED, ONE FOR 10 YEARS, ONE FOR 25 YEARS.

AND INCUMBENCY HAS SOMETHING TO DO WITH HOLDING THEIR SEAT.

NUMBER TWO IS SHE BEAT J.

WEBBER, HER OPPONENT REPUBLICAN BY 15 POINTS.

BY 15 POINTS.

NOTHING TO SNEEZE AT.

AND TRUMP ONLY WON THAT DISTRICT BY LESS THAN 1%,.9%. SO, IT'S A RISK.

BUT COMPARED TO SOME OF THESE OTHER GUYS AND WOMEN ACROSS THE COUNTRY.

I HEAR YOU.

IF YOU WANT TO DO THE PROFILES AND COURAGE THING, I'M GOING TO ARGUE THAT THERE ARE PEOPLE PUTTING MORE AT RISK THAN SHE IS.

BUT LET'S NOT KID OURSELVES.

THE REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE AND PRESIDENT TRUMP AND THE INCREDIBLE ABILITY THEY HAVE TO RAISE MONEY LARGELY THROUGH INCUMBENCY, THEY'RE GOING TO TARGET CONGRESSWOMAN MIKIE SHERRILL.

THEY'VE ALREADY SAID THEY WILL.

THAT'S WHAT I'M SAYING.

SHE RAN AGAINST SOMEONE WHO WAS NOT IN CONGRESS, JAY WEBBER.

HE OR SHE IS GOING TO HAVE HUNDREDS AND HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS, MILLIONS OF DOLLARS POTENTIALLY TO BEAT MIKIE SHERRILL.

AND TO SAY SHE'S SLOWING DOWN CONGRESS, SLOWING DOWN PROGRESS BECAUSE SHE GOT INVOLVED IN THE IMPEACHMENT AND THEREFORE CONGRESS SHUTS DOWN, THE PRESIDENT DOESN'T DEAL WITH THEM, AND IT'S ALL HER FAULT.

THEY'RE COMING AFTER HER.

IT'S A RISK.

THERE WERE THREE OTHER DEMOCRATS WHO FLIPPED SEATS IN 2018.

MEL NOW SKI, CLINTON WON THAT DISTRICT.

BUT DISTRICT TWO --

JEFF VAN DREW.

WE TALK ABOUT SOUTH JERSEY A LOT.

HE'S A CONGRESSMAN REPRESENTING THE SOUTHERN PART OF THE STATE.

HE'S CONSERVATIVE.

HE'S CONSERVATIVE MODERATE.

SHE'S STEVE SWEENEY, JOE BIDEN TYPE.

EVEN MORE TO THE CENTER.

HE'S NOT FOR IMPEACHMENT.

SORRY FOR INTERRUPTING.

CONGRESSMAN VAN DRU IS SAYING I MAY NOT LIKE WHAT THE PRESIDENT DID.

I THINK THIS IS UNSEEMLY, BUT THIS IS BAD FOR THE COUNTRY.

NOTHING'S GOING TO HAPPEN.

WE'RE NOT GOING TO DEAL WITH INFRASTRUCTURE, NOT GOING TO DEAL WITH WATER ISSUES, NOT DEAL WITH A WHOLE RANGE OF ISSUES.

I THINK HE'S SAYING THIS IS A BAD IDEA EVEN IF I DON'T LIKE THE PRESIDENT.

KIM, DISTRICT THREE, TRUMP DID PRETTY WELL IN THAT DISTRICT.

HE DID.

HE DID.

WHAT'S HE SAYING?

ANYTHING?

DEPENDS UPON WHAT DAY IT IS, SORRY CONGRESSMAN.

THERE ARE TIMES HE SUPPORTS THE INQUIRY.

HE SUPPORTS THE INQUIRY.

WE NEED TO PURSUE THE INQUIRY.

HE DOES NOT SAY HE'S FOR IMPEACHMENT.

BUT CONGRESSWOMAN SHERRILL --

SHE'S MUCH MORE AGGRESSIVE.

SHE SUPPORTS THE INQUIRY, BUT IF YOU REALLY READ BETWEEN THE LINES, SHE SEEMS TO ME IS SAYING WE HAVE THIS EVIDENCE, WE HAVE TO GO THROUGH DUE PROCESS.

BUT THERE'S SOME SAY THEY'RE FURTHER ALONG.

SHE'S WAY FURTHER ALONG THAN CONGRESSMAN KIM.

OVER THE LAST FEW WEEKS THERE HAVE BEEN EVENTS WHERE SOME OF THESE DEMOCRATIC MODERATES ACROSS THE COUNTRY HAVE PARTICIPATED WHERE THEY HAVE BEEN CHALLENGED PUBLICLY.

ON IMPEACHMENT.

ON IMPEACHMENT, YES.

MAX ROSE IN STATTEN ISLAND.

THERE WAS A DEMONSTRATION OUTSIDE HIS OFFICE BECAUSE HE ALSO SUPPORTED THE IMPEACHMENT INQUIRY.

DO YOU SEE THAT HAPPENING IN NEW JERSEY?

WHAT'S INTERESTING, I LOVE THEY'RE HOLDING THESE MEETINGS.

ONE IN MICHIGAN WAS LAMBASTED.

I WILL SAY THIS IN NEW JERSEY, SO FAR IN NEW JERSEY -- AND THIS COULD BE BECAUSE THE POLL NUMBERS IN NEW JERSEY SAY A SIGNIFICANT MAJORITY IN NEW JERSEY SUPPORT THE IMPEACHMENT.

NOT JUST THE INQUIRY BUT REMOVAL FROM OFFICE.

EVERY TOWN MEETING FOR A MEMBER OF CONGRESS WHO HAS BEEN OUT FRONT ON THIS AND BEEN CRITICAL OF THE PRESIDENT AND MOVING TOWARD IMPEACHMENT, THEY HAVE NOT HAD THE KIND OF VITREAL YOU'RE DESCRIBING RIGHT NOW THAT MAX ROSE FACED IN STA TON ISLAND.

ALL THINGS BEING EQUAL, ASSUMING NO NEW BLOCKBUSTER THING HAPPENS --

BIG ASSUMPTION.

YEAH.

WELL, ASSUMING THAT, IF IMPEACHMENT IS THE PREDOMINANT ISSUE BETWEEN NOW AND ELECTION, HOW DO YOU THINK THAT'S GOING TO IMPACT THE DEMOCRATS AROUND THE COUNTRY AND THE DEMOCRATS PARTICULARLY IN NEW JERSEY.

I THINK THE DEMOCRATS LIKE JEFF ANDREW DOWN IN THE SOUTH, I BELIEVE HE BELIEVES AND I THINK HE'S RIGHT THAT MOST OF THE PEOPLE IN HIS DISTRICT DO NOT SUPPORT IMPEACHMENT, ASSUMING THINGS STAY THE SAME.

I THINK CONGRESSWOMAN SHERRILL IS GOING TO HAVE A TOUGH TIME BECAUSE OF THE MONEY THAT COMES IN.

EVEN IF MORE PEOPLE THAT SUPPORT IMPEACHMENT IN HER DISTRICT THAN DON'T.

I THINK CONGRESSMAN KIM AND TOM MULL NOW SKI, IT SPENDS WHO THEIR OPPONENTS ARE, AND THE WAY THEY PLAY THIS.

IF THEY MOVE TO A MORE AGGRESSIVE IMPEACHMENT PROCEEDING, I THINK IT COULD AFFECT THEIR RACES VERY MUCH.

LISTEN, NEW JERSEY, FOUR REPS RAPHE, FOUR DISTRICTS HELD BY REPUBLICANS, THAT WAS A BIG PART OF THE BALANCE OF POWER IN THE LOWER HOUSE.

NEW JERSEY COULD LEAD THE COUNTRY OR DICTATE WHERE THE HOUSE GOES.

ALL RIGHT.

THANKS SO MUCH FOR JOINING US.

WE'LL SEE WHAT DEVELOPS.

23 YEARS TOGETHER, RAPHE.

IT JUST SEEMS LIKE YESTERDAY.

GOOD TO BE WITH YOU.

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