Hillary Clinton: I would not use American ground forces in Syria. I think that would be a very serious mistake. I don’t think American troops should be holding territory, which is what they would have to do as an occupying force. I don’t think that is a smart strategy.
I do think the use of special forces, which we’re using, the use of enablers and trainers in Iraq, which has had some positive effects, are very much in our interests, and so I do support what is happening, but let me just…
Martha Raddatz: But what would you do differently than President Obama is doing?
Hillary Clinton: Well, Martha, I hope that by the time I — if I’m fortunate…
Donald Trump: Everything.
Hillary Clinton: I hope by the time I am president that we will have pushed ISIS out of Iraq. I do think that there is a good chance that we can take Mosul. And, you know, Donald says he knows more about ISIS than the generals. No, he doesn’t.
There are a lot of very important planning going on, and some of it is to signal to the Sunnis in the area, as well as Kurdish Peshmerga fighters, that we all need to be in this. And that takes a lot of planning and preparation.
I would go after Baghdadi. I would specifically target Baghdadi, because I think our targeting of Al-Qaeda leaders — and I was involved in a lot of those operations, highly classified ones — made a difference. So I think that could help.
I would also consider arming the Kurds. The Kurds have been our best partners in Syria, as well as Iraq. And I know there’s a lot of concern about that in some circles, but I think they should have the equipment they need so that Kurdish and Arab fighters on the ground are the principal way that we take Raqqa after pushing ISIS out of Iraq.
Martha Raddatz: Thank you very much. We’re going to move on…
Donald Trump: You know what’s funny? She went over a minute over, and you don’t stop her. When I go one second over, it’s like a big deal.
Martha Raddatz: You had many answers.
Donald Trump: It’s really — it’s really very interesting.
Anderson Cooper: We’ve got a question over here from James Carter. Mr. Carter?
Audience Question: My question is: do you believe you can be a devoted president to all the people in the United States?
Anderson Cooper: That question begins for Mr. Trump.
Donald Trump: Absolutely. I mean, she calls our people deplorable, a large group, and irredeemable. I will be a president for all of our people. And I’ll be a president that will turn our inner cities around and will give strength to people and will give economics to people and will bring jobs back. Because NAFTA, signed by her husband, is perhaps the greatest disaster trade deal in the history of the world. Not in this country. It stripped us of manufacturing jobs. We lost our jobs. We lost our money. We lost our plants. It is a disaster. And now she wants to sign TPP, even though she says now she’s for it. She called it the gold standard. And by the way, at the last debate, she lied, because it turned out that she did say the gold standard and she said she didn’t say it. They actually said that she lied. OK? And she lied. But she’s lied about a lot of things.
I would be a president for all of the people, African-Americans, the inner cities. Devastating what’s happening to our inner cities. She’s been talking about it for years. As usual, she talks about it, nothing happens. She doesn’t get it done.
Same with the Latino Americans, the Hispanic Americans. The same exact thing. They talk, they don’t get it done. You go into the inner cities and — you see it’s 45% poverty. African-Americans now 45% poverty in the inner cities. The education is a disaster. Jobs are essentially nonexistent. I mean, it’s — you know, and I’ve been saying at big speeches where I have 20,000 and 30,000 people, what do you have to lose? It can’t get any worse. And she’s been talking about the inner cities for 25 years. Nothing’s going to ever happen.
Let me tell you, if she’s president of the United States, nothing’s going to happen. It’s just going to be talk. And all of her friends, the taxes we were talking about, and I would just get it by osmosis. She’s not doing any me favors. But by doing all the others’ favors, she’s doing me favors.
Anderson Cooper: Mr. Trump, thank you.
Donald Trump: But I will tell you, she’s all talk. It doesn’t get done. All you have to do is take a look at her Senate run. Take a look at upstate New York.
Anderson Cooper: Your two minutes is up. Secretary Clinton, two minutes?
Donald Trump: It turned out to be a disaster.
Anderson Cooper: You have two minutes, Secretary Clinton.
Hillary Clinton: Well, 67% of the people voted to re-elect me when I ran for my second term, and I was very proud and very humbled by that.
Mr. Carter, I have tried my entire life to do what I can to support children and families. You know, right out of law school, I went to work for the Children’s Defense Fund. And Donald talks a lot about, you know, the 30 years I’ve been in public service. I’m proud of that. You know, I started off as a young lawyer working against discrimination against African-American children in schools and in the criminal justice system. I worked to make sure that kids with disabilities could get a public education, something that I care very much about. I have worked with Latinos — one of my first jobs in politics was down in south Texas registering Latino citizens to be able to vote. So I have a deep devotion, to use your absolutely correct word, to making sure that an every American feels like he or she has a place in our country.
And I think when you look at the letters that I get, a lot of people are worried that maybe they wouldn’t have a place in Donald Trump’s America. They write me, and one woman wrote me about her son, Felix. She adopted him from Ethiopia when he was a toddler. He’s 10 years old now. This is the only one country he’s ever known. And he listens to Donald on TV and he said to his mother one day, will he send me back to Ethiopia if he gets elected?
You know, children listen to what is being said. To go back to the very, very first question. And there’s a lot of fear — in fact, teachers and parents are calling it the Trump effect. Bullying is up. A lot of people are feeling, you know, uneasy. A lot of kids are expressing their concerns. So, first and foremost, I will do everything I can to reach out to everybody.
Anderson Cooper: Your time, Secretary Clinton.
Hillary Clinton: Democrats, Republicans, independents, people across our country. If you don’t vote for me, I still want to be your president.
Anderson Cooper: Your two minutes is up.
Hillary Clinton: I want to be the best president I can be for every American.
Anderson Cooper: Secretary Clinton, your two minutes is up. I want to follow up on something that Donald Trump actually said to you, a comment you made last month. You said that half of Donald Trump’s supporters are, quote, “deplorables, racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic.” You later said you regretted saying half. You didn’t express regret for using the term “deplorables.” To Mr. Carter’s question, how can you unite a country if you’ve written off tens of millions of Americans?
Hillary Clinton: Well, within hours I said that I was sorry about the way I talked about that, because my argument is not with his supporters. It’s with him and with the hateful and divisive campaign that he has run, and the inciting of violence at his rallies, and the very brutal kinds of comments about not just women, but all Americans, all kinds of Americans.