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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT

Awaiting Trump, Sanders at Dueling Rallies; GOP Fighting For Every Delegate; Clinton Memo: Sanders' Path Would Overturn Will of Voters; Clinton, Sanders Agree to CNN Debate. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired April 4, 2016 - 19:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[19:00:04] ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: OUTFRONT next, dueling rallies in Wisconsin tonight. Trump and Sanders blocks apart. Its new details emerged from a leak, Trump campaign memo tonight.

Plus, Sanders predicting a big Wisconsin upset and a win in his and Clinton's some state of New York. Can he pull it off?

And the Paul Ryan rumor that just will not go away. Let's go OUTFRONT.

Good Monday evening. I'm Erin Burnett. OUTFRONT tonight, the battle for Wisconsin. At this moment, we're awaiting dueling rallies in Milwaukee moments from now. Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders both fighting for every single vote in this crucial battleground state. With Donald Trump in the unusual position of trailing Ted Cruz pretty significantly in most polls. Trump about to hold his third rally of the day. Literally just a block away from Trump's event, Bernie Sanders, who is neck and neck with Hillary Clinton in the state about to speak to a big group of supporters. This as the frontrunner predicts a very, very big victory tomorrow while continuing to insist that John Kasich shouldn't be allowed to run.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: He got to get the hell out, honestly. And let me tell you, he hurts me much more than he hurts Cruz. Cruz wants him out.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Kasich campaigning in New York today blasted back.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. JOHN KASICH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Donald Trump said that I need to get out of the race because I'm getting his voters. No, no. I've got news for him. I'm going to get a heck of a lot of his voters. OK?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Meanwhile, Ted Cruz says he's the most electable Republican in the field.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Because if we nominate Donald Trump, he elects Hillary Clinton. He loses by double digits to Hillary Clinton. I beat Hillary Clinton.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Sara Murray is OUTFRONT at the Trump rally in Milwaukee. And Sara, how is the campaign feeling about the Trump's chances tomorrow in Wisconsin? I mean, the fact that he did multiple rallies today shows that he is fighting all the way down the wire.

SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: You're absolutely right, Erin. He is definitely spending quite a bit of time here. And it was interesting to see him today sort of predict that he could have a very, very big victory. Because like you said, it will be a come from behind victory if he's able to pull that off. He is trailing Ted Cruz here in the polls. And this is the state that has just not been very receptive to Donald Trump, even in its most conservative wings. It's interesting because his top advisers have sort of come and said they're not really expecting all that much from Wisconsin.

Maybe a couple of delegates, but that's pretty much it. Now, the other guy who is not expected to do great here is John Kasich. So, to see Donald Trump go after John Kasich, it's almost like Kasich has become such a thorn in his side. He just wants him shoved aside and it's not just Trump. It's Ted Cruz who has also trained his ire on Kasich. He's not everyone on the ballot when it comes to the convention. So, he probably won't see if they get their way on that for a couple more of months. But it's pretty clear that they want a man to man, head-to-head race between Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. But it could be a while before they get that -- Erin.

BURNETT: All right. Sara, thank you. So, a bit question. Why is Wisconsin proving more troublesome than some of the other states have for Donald Trump?

Martin Savidge is OUTFRONT.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Something is weird in Wisconsin. What's worked for Donald Trump elsewhere may not be working here.

TIM FELSKI, BUS OPERATOR: I'm a bus operator with local union 998 here main Milwaukee.

SAVIDGE (on camera): How long have you been here?

FELSKI: About six-and-a-half years.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): Tim Felski, Republican, White, middle aged, a blue collar worker, a veteran, every demographic that is so far been pro-Trump. Not here.

(on camera): Where do you stand politically?

FELSKI: Definitely a staunch conservative absolutely. I voted for Ted Cruz.

SAVIDGE: Why?

FELSKI: I like that he's not some type of fanatic or anything like a Donald Trump or something, you know?

SAVIDGE (voice-over): Trump still has his fans here.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He doesn't need all those lobbyist for money, he has his own money, so he can stand up for the people.

SAVIDGE: But even they can see where Trump may have messed up in Wisconsin.

JOHN SCHULTZE, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I don't think he's a fickle to the Walker supporters. There's a very strong Walker base in the state of Wisconsin.

SAVIDGE: Scott Walker is Wisconsin's governor. You may best remember him for this. In 2011, Walker took on state unions in a bitter battle over right to work legislation and won. In 2015, Walker, beloved by Republicans in his state, decided to run for president and lost. Pushed out many experts say by Trump. Something trump likes to brag about at his Wisconsin rallies while at the same time bashing Walker's records.

TRUMP: I wouldn't say that your governor loves me.

SAVIDGE: He's right because Walker endorsed Cruz. But Trump says, he doesn't need Walker supporters anyway. He says, he's counting on Democrats.

TRUMP: And you know, you can crossover. I think I'm going to have a big Democrat crossover and I hope I do.

SAVIDGE: The head of the Milwaukee Teachers Union think Trump is wrong again about Wisconsin. He's heard of crossovers in the past about it.

KIM SCHROEDER, MTEA PRESIDENT: In this election, no. I have not heard that. I think it may have something to do with the slate of candidates on the Republican side.

SAVIDGE: Wisconsin voters have been politically engaged for five straight hard years, they know the issues, and they're no Trump pushovers.

[19:05:07] FELSKI: I think voters are more well-informed here. I think he doesn't play real strong with us because we're not as susceptible to his wild man ways, his ruckus, you know, rhetoric and things of that nature. I just don't think that plays really well for a lot of folks.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE: You know, if Trump loses, Erin, then the real question is going to be, well, is this the start of some national trend or is it just an anomaly here in Wisconsin? It will also mean two weeks of bad headlines for him before the next primary which is of course in New York. If he though wins, well, that Never Trump movement, the one trying to block him from being the nominee, they have probably lost their latest best chance to stop that from happening -- Erin.

BURNETT: All right. Martin Savidge, thank you.

And OUTFRONT now, the co-chair for the Ted Cruz campaign Bob Vander Plaats. And Trump supporter Jeff Lord who was political director for President Ronald Reagan.

Jeff, let me start with you though in this piece from Marvin Savidge. You heard that voter there and Martin and as Martin described him, representing every demographic that has been pro-Trump so far, Republican, White, middle aged, blue collar worker, veteran, but he's voting Cruz very definitively so. Why is Trump having such a hard time in Wisconsin?

JEFFREY LORD, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Well, you know, in truth, Erin, I think maybe this last week was not the best for him. And I think that perhaps, you know, the headlines that came out of that. The fact that Governor Walker -- Governor Walker I think is very popular with Republicans in Wisconsin. He's endorsed Ted Cruz, but I would say this, caution this. We all remembering, it seems -- ago but Iowa. And Donald Trump came in second in Iowa. And there were all these Cruz headlines et cetera.

And Donald Trump went on to rebound immediately and won in New Hampshire and South Carolina and Nevada and on from there. And I'd also point out that Bill Clinton managed to lose 13 primaries in 1992 and still became the nominee. Ronald Reagan lost four and still became the nominee. So, you can have in occasional laws when yours is far ahead with Donald Trump. He's coming up as Martin pointed out to New York in other states where he's doing fairly well. So, we will see.

BURNETT: Which is a fair point, Bob. Because even if you win Wisconsin and say you win it in a big way, you really deny Trump delegates. You know, then what? Because Trump's home state is next, New York. And he warned today, fairly so if past this president that betting against him has never paid off. Here he is.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: And everybody said that's the end of Trump. It's over for Trump. You know how many times I've been given the end? Like, I've been given the last rites how many times? Like ten. Every week it's the end of Trump. And they walk in -- sir, I don't know what happened, but your poll numbers just went through the roof.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: So what is next for you, Bob?

BOB VANDER PLAATS, TED CRUZ CAMPAIGN CO-CHAIR: Well, I think you let the campaign play out. First of all, Wisconsin hasn't happened. I think Ted Cruz is going to have a great night tomorrow night. And let's say he wins. The basketball coach in me says there's nothing like winning. That gives you momentum. I think John Kasich definitely needs to get out of the race. And Trump is calling them to get out of the race. Cruz is telling them get out of the race.

Mathematically has no path forward. Let this be a head-to-head competition. In all of our polling shows, once a head to head, Cruz beats Trump. I think that would be fair and square and I think the delegates would appreciate and reward that process if that actually happened. Only those two can get to 1237, and only those two can come out of Cleveland as the nominee.

BURNETT: Well, of course, you know, I mean, theoretically, anybody could come out of Cleveland. We'll talk about Paul Ryan later in the show. But, you know, Jeff, there is something to be said about whether Donald Trump is at a crucial moment in his campaign where things could really fall apart or as you say, he rebounds quickly off a loss in Wisconsin if he loses tomorrow night. Gabe Sherman of New York magazine is a big piece on Trump, there's so many fascinating things in it.

And according to Sherman, Trump writes his own ads, he writes his own tweets. He sits there and dictates in his office to his press person. He has 94 paid staffers. Hillary Clinton just in comparison. Seven hundred and sixty five paid staffers. Trump told Sherman because he wasn't interviewed for the article, quote, "I'm the strategist." And today he again said he's not going to change his tone at all. Here he is.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: My wife is always saying -- and Ivanka. You've heard of Ivanka, right? Right? She's had a baby. She's great. But they said, darling, be more presidential. Daddy, be more presidential during the debate. I said, I will, but I have to knock off the final two first if you don't mind, right? You know what they mean. I can be presidential. But if I was presidential, we'll only have about 20 percent of you would be here because it would be boring as hell, I will say. Now, let me un-presidential just for a little while longer and maybe I will be a little bit unpresidential as I beat Hillary because -- uhh --

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

We'll beat Hillary's self ahead of --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[19:10:03] BURNETT: I mean, his rallies react to that, Jeff, but is bragging about being unpresidential at this point in the race a smart move? LORD: Yes, you know, being presidential is a good thing for

presidents. When you're a candidate for president, to be perfectly candid you have to knock the stuffing out of your competition here. You can rest assured that Ted Cruz is not going to waste any time being presidential. He's going to go after Donald Trump tooth and nail. And frankly, that's what's going on over there on the other side with Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. This is what this people do. This is how you get to be the presidential nominee and the chance to be presidential in victory. But if you start acting presidential before then, Thomas E. Dewy tried that once. And it didn't work out for him so well.

BURNETT: And he got a headline.

All right. Thank you both very much, I appreciate it.

And OUTFRONT next, millions of votes cast in the GOP primary could be absolutely meaningless. We'll going to explain. See if yours is one of them.

Plus, Bernie Sanders predicting that if he wins Wisconsin tomorrow he's going to take New York too. Can he really do it? And how is it no one's pants have actually caught on fire in this campaign? It's a truly serious question.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: This guy Ted Cruz is the single biggest liar I have ever dealt with in my life. For lying, he's the best I've ever seen. He's the best.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:15:05] BURNETT: Tonight, a battle for delegates. The GOP candidates making their last pitch to Wisconsin voters before tomorrow's primary, but it's looking like this fight might continue all the way to the convention in July where every delegate counts. And in a lot of cases, frankly, the voters' choice means absolutely nothing.

Tom Foreman is OUTFRONT. It's a pretty stunning thing to say, but true. And this has become an all-out battle for those delegates.

TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it has, Erin. And you're absolutely right. We look at those numbers out there, the delegate count as everyone is trying to get that magic number and clinch the nomination. And everyone thinks, well, the delegates will go to the convention and they will reflect the will of those millions of people, who voted in primaries and caucuses, and they will but only to a point. Because if you get past that first vote, and you have not managed, you have somebody reached that goal then. Suddenly, many of these people on the floor become unbound. They no longer have to reflect that will. And then the people who were actually chosen to be delegates can make

a big difference. Let's go to the Tennessee delegation, I'll explain why. Fifty eight delegates here. Based on the popular vote in that state, Donald Trump was going to get 33 of them, Ted Cruz 16. And Marco Rubio nine. Under the rules of the party in that state and every state has its own rules, they must vote that way for first two ballots at the convention. But take a look at that little note up there. Fourteen of these are chosen by the committee in the state, the party committee. The Trump campaign has already suggested they think the committee has tried to stack this with people who are anti- Trump. So on the third vote those people could start turning votes over against him.

And in the worst-case scenario, you could see Donald Trump for example in those state lose a state that he already won. What about Louisiana over here? Here's another example. This was basically a tie in that Donald Trump got 18 of the state's 46 delegates. And Ted Cruz got 18. Marco Rubio got five and five are uncommitted. So, you know right away, here are ten over in this area that we don't know where they're going to go. We have no idea what's going to happen with them. But same thing, only difference here is Louisiana releases its entire delegation after the first vote. So suddenly this whole state could become a big question mark. Erin, you multiply that state after state after state and not just down in the bayous all across this country. The deep you go into it, the more you have voodoo voting under way.

BURNETT: I like the term, voodoo voting because it just seems so absurd and un-American frankly in a lot of ways because it gets even more extreme, right, Tom? I mean, there are some states in which the popular vote -- well, people don't even really get to vote at all. It is just the delegates. Right?

FOREMAN: Yes, there are only a few states like this but they're amazing. North Dakota is one example. North Dakota doesn't have a tremendous number of delegates. It has 28 but in a race like this, everything matters. What they did is have a state convention this past weekend. And the people there simply decided who the delegates would be. Yes, the candidates were there and they tried to campaign to say give us more and somebody else. It looks like Ted Cruz did pretty well in terms of getting people there, but we don't actually know that because here's the thing.

This delegation, nobody in it has to say ahead of the convention how he or she will vote. And they can change their vote anytime they wish. So, this is a complete mystery here. So, again, Erin, you take all this, you multiply it for state after state after state if you get into a contested convention. And in the end, what you wind up is a circumstance that basically it's not over until the voting is over and even then it may not be over -- Erin.

BURNETT: I mean, it's unbelievable. Voodoo voting may be the kind term to describe it. You know, you start to laugh and then you think, wow, this is the United States of America. Supposed to be the world's ultimate democracy. Thank you very much, Tom Foreman.

Let's go straight now to our senior political adviser to Donald Trump's campaign Barry Bennett and Republican media consultant and strategist Brad Todd.

Brad, let me start you with. Because you just heard Tom Foreman. I mean, you know, look, it's pretty shocking to hear this, as a regular citizen, you say isn't it supposed to be the will of the people? And of course that's now how it goes and every state has its own rules. You say that the Trump team has not been focused on the delegate game. And obviously, when Tom lays that out, if you're not focusing on those individuals and winning over individual delegate that are loyal to you, you're going to be toast.

BRAD TODD, REPUBLICAN MEDIA CONSULTANT: Well, I think you have to give Donald Trump credit first off. He's a great television star. And he's produced this lack of a reality television show. He's done a fantastic masterful job in the debates. And after every time he has a winning victory party, but in politics it's not a reality show. It's a network. And you have to build a network to assemble a coalition. And the time to start working on state parties and state executive committees is about two years ago. Barry did it for his previous -- Ben Carson they worked very hard. They were in Iowa for a long time meeting people, building the network. Donald Trump chose not to do that. And now he's paying a price for it.

BURNETT: And Barry, of course, now you know, Ben Carson is backing Donald Trump, a surrogate for him, but do you heard Brad that, you know, Donald Trump's two years behind. You have now jumped on board the Trump team. Obviously, you were with Carson a few months ago. Are you worried about the Trump team just not being prepared? Are you just playing catch up here?

[19:20:12] BARRY BENNETT, SENIOR POLITICAL ADVISER, DONALD TRUMP CAMPAIGN: Well, we might be playing a little bit of catch-up but, you know, Ben Carson is a great example. Ben Carson's folks are coming over to us. So, that's how -- Ben Carson's entire delegate operation is now working for Trump. So, you know, word gets out very fast. And, you know, we're going to get to 1237. These unbound delegates, the ones counting on, we're not counting on our scheme to get to 1237. We're going to get there. We're going to get there without them first ballot.

BURNETT: You're going to get there first ballot, but you are now saying you think you can get there before the convention or what?

BENNETT: Oh, yes. Yes. Oh, yes.

BURNETT: You do?

BENNETT: All right. So, Ted Cruz just spoke to Sunlen Serfaty who is with him tonight, our reporter Barry, and he said what you're saying is not true he's outmaneuvering Donald Trump when it comes to the delegates fair and square. North Dakota voters of course have not voted. They're never going to get to vote in the primary but they do have delegates who get to decide who they're going to support anyway and here's how Cruz play that game in his own words.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) CRUZ: Just yesterday in North Dakota they had their convention electing their delegates. Of the delegates who have declared who they're supporting, 18 are supporting me. One is supporting Donald Trump. I'll take an 18 to one ratio every day of the week.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Now, Barry of course, Ted Cruz went to North Dakota to woo those delegates.

BENNETT: Yes.

BURNETT: Donald Trump did not.

BENNETT: Well, we saw Ben Carson. And he did a great job. And I haven't been able to find 18 of those delegates in support of Ted Cruz. So, you know, we're talking to all of them. We talk to them every day. They can change their mind. We're not going to stop wooing them. We'll get our fair share.

BURNETT: So, Brad, what do you say to this? I mean, 28 delegates in North Dakota. And, you know, I know that Barry is confident. He's going to get the 1237. And whether, you know, that's what he has to say. But a lot of people, you know, think this is going to be very difficult for the Trump campaign to do, including yourself. So these 28 delegates, they could make or break it. Any 28 delegates could. Any two delegates could. How is it fair that you have delegates who can vote for whoever they want when that isn't the will of the American people?

TODD: Well, first off, Barry has no pro. And I feel Trump could have used him two years ago. Now he's asking him to make a sailboat out of sawdust. And it's a tough job. It's much easier if they get their 1237 through earned delegates and win this on the first ballot. You know, the convention has always pick the nominee. In 1964, there were only 16 states who actually held votes at all. The other states all sent their own delegations elected by their state party leadership. Delegates pick the nominee. They do so with some advice from the voters who choose the delegates. That's the way our system works.

BURNETT: Barry?

BENNETT: Well, I agree. Brad, that is actually the way it works, but you know, the will of the voters has to be taken into account. And these delegates do that both in their Congressional district and in their state. But, you know, we have won millions and millions of more votes than anybody else. Hundreds and hundreds of more delegates than anybody else and we're going to win. Plain and simple.

TODD: You know, what's funny though Erin is in the first primary that Donald Trump won in New Hampshire. He got 35 percent of the vote. Now, we've had 30 states vote. And his average in those 30 states is 35.6 percent of the vote. And the real problem that the Trump campaign has -- the thing they have to fix which I think they can is they have to run a campaign that appeals to all of the Republican primary. They can't continue to do exactly the exact same thing that Donald Trump did to win New Hampshire. You heard him say today, I've got to knock two more out in your segment to play outfront.

That implies that he thinks this is a basketball tournament like March Madness where he just have to keep winning every game. That's not how nominations work. You have to build a coalition of the majority, the overwhelming majority, of the people who come to Cleveland and vote on that floor and get their confidence. I sense that that's not the way he views this race. He views it state to state. Who's left in the race? Who do I have to beat today? And that's not the way nominations work.

BENNETT: Well, Brad, you know, if you look at the polling today, the RG (ph) poll in Wisconsin has it at 42. In New York we're at 56 and at Pennsylvania we're at 48. So, I think we're getting there.

BURNETT: Right.

TODD: Because you need to be over 50 in New York. That's where you need to be.

BENNETT: We are. We're going to win all 95 delegates.

BURNETT: And of course, if you're over 50 in New York, you do get winner take all. It's just crucial. And I know Barry to your math, a crucial state. Thanks so much to both of you.

OUTFRONT next, Bernie Sanders about to speak live to supporters in Milwaukee. Can he pull off another major upset against Hillary Clinton? And almost every candidate has called an opponent a liar. Who wins the award for using the "l" word the most? Well, we will tell you the truth.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:28:36] BURNETT: Tonight, Hillary Clinton's campaign insisting Bernie Sanders only path forward depends on overturning the will of the voters. In a memo, we've just gotten here at CNN, a campaign manager writes that Clinton has now built a nearly insurmountable lead as we countdown of course hours away from the polls opening in Wisconsin, is the state that could change the course of this election. Right now Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders are about to hold dueling rallies in front of thousands of supporters in Milwaukee.

For Sanders, a victory there would give him more momentum heading into New York's pivotal primary. For Hillary Clinton, a win tomorrow would put an end to Sanders winning streak. Brianna Keilar is OUTFRONT live at Bernie Sanders campaign event.

And Brianna, how does the Sanders campaign feel about their chances tomorrow? I mean, I asked him about it last week. And he said, I'll tell you on Tuesday night how I feel. He clearly, you know, had a good attitude about it, but I would imagine they're only more confident now.

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I think they are Erin, and you'll have to pardon me because there's basically a concert going on behind me. The Group 303 playing on stage right now. They're feeling pretty good. And I think part of it is because, one, we're seeing Bernie Sanders talk a big game.

So, you're hearing it from the candidates themselves, but I think now they're feeling good about the polls. They're looking back towards Michigan where you see sort of a similar makeup of the electorate to what you're seeing here in Wisconsin. They're relying a lot on labor support and on college students. And I think they think they're going to be able to pull this out tomorrow night.

[19:30:04] And quite frankly, Erin, they really need to. Bernie Sanders needs to win many more delegates in these coming contests than Hillary Clinton does.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Brianna.

And, of course, very energized crowd where she is and, of course, across town with Donald Trump.

OUTFRONT now, our political commentator Bakari Sellers, a Hillary Clinton supporter, and Jonathan Tasini, Bernie Sanders supporter, challenged Clinton in the primary for her New York Senate seat back in '06.

Let me start with you, Jonathan.

A Hillary Clinton campaign memo that we just got a moment ago says Clinton has built nearly an insurmountable lead. And it goes further, it says the only way for Sanders to actually win would be to, quote, "overturn the will of the voters." Pretty aggressive charge. What's your response? True?

JONATHAN TASINI, BERNIE SANDERS SUPPORTER: Whatever. I mean, they're going to keep putting out memos about all sorts of leads and so on. We're about looking at what the voters are actually going to want to do tomorrow in Wisconsin.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say we're going to win New York. There are contests in May in Oregon, in states that are favorable to Bernie. Then, we go to California, and I think as the campaign has said, Jeff Weaver said, we have a path to victory. We will pass Hillary Clinton in the pledged delegates.

BURNETT: Whatever, Bakari?

BAKARI SELLERS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, I think the math is what it is. The fact of the matter, Bernie Sanders, I have -- he's in a good position tomorrow night. He may squeak out a victory, but Bernie Sanders can't squeak victories and win the pledged delegates. Bernie Sanders has to win by 60-plus points.

And the problem is when you go into New York, when you go into Pennsylvania, when you into Maryland, California, Connecticut, these delegate rich states, Hillary Clinton is doing very, very well. And Bernie Sanders is gong to have to pull off the equivalent of recovering five onside kicks and throwing five Hail Marys in a row for touchdowns, and that's just a very, very tough path. BURNETT: Is it fair for the campaign though, Bakari, to say that the

only way for the nomination would be to reverse the will of the voters? I mean, yes, Bernie Sanders knows his path, it's a tough one, it's difficult. But it's not fair yet to say you'll be overturning the will of the voters, is it?

SELLERS: The race isn't over by any stretch. I mean, Bernie Sanders has every right to go into June. That's not the question. But the fact of the matter is, the memo is correct. The math is what it is. It's correct.

And Bernie Sanders is going to -- I believe Bernie Sanders is going to have a good night tomorrow night, but the race is going to be very close.

BURNETT: Jonathan?

TASINI: But, Bakari, one thing to correct. It wasn't -- he doesn't have to win by 60 points, is what you said. He has to obtain some 60 percent thresholds, which would mean that he wins --

SELLERS: You're correct.

TASINI: -- by 60/40s. But just wanted to make -- the viewers might be confused about that.

SELLERS: You are correct. I apologize for that, Jonathan.

TASINI: No problem. I know you didn't do it intentionally.

Look, we understand what you said about the math, but I think we should look at the races coming up. I disagree slightly respectfully at the state you mentioned. I think Bernie is going to do very well.

Now, here's the thing that we've always shown in this race. When Bernie has lots of time to spend in particular states and people get to hear his message, he does very well. I may eat crow on this. I'm going out on a limb and I think that Bernie is going to win New York, I think he's gong to win by 60 percent.

But the enthusiasm there is outstanding. There were about 1,000 people out in Queens who showed up to sign up for canvasses.

BURNETT: So, here's the thing, you know, that magic, you do need to win it by a big margin, not just win it. I mean, that's true, right?

But, Bakari, to the point that Jonathan is making, Bernie Sanders has done well in states where he's been able to spend time. And, you know, the general sense in New York state from early polls is it has gotten a little bit tighter over time. Of course, we're waiting more definitive polling, but, you know, you've got a long time before the New York primary. Two weeks, right? So, Bernie Sanders has a lot of time.

And Hillary Clinton has been maybe trying to soften expectations. Here she is this morning on NBC. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm absolutely confident I will be the nominee. Now, I'm going to do everything I can win to New York. I represent New York for eight years. I'm proud of the work that I did with so many thousands of New Yorkers. So, of course, I'm going to work incredibly hard.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: How big of a blow would it be for her to lose what she sells as her home state?

SELLERS: I mean, I still think that we go back to the same point, which I make over and over again. The math is not changing. The fact of the matter is that Hillary Clinton is in a very, very good position to be the Democratic nominee.

New York does have some things that go in Hillary Clinton's favor. It's a closed primary. It's very, very diverse in New York. That she did represent that state for eight years. So, we do anticipate -- I will go out on a limb and bet John a deep dish pizza up in New York. But I will believe that she will come out victorious there and move forward.

TASINI: You're on, Bakari. You're on, Bakari.

SELLERS: I'll take that.

BURNETT: All right. So, there's your bet. But let me ask you this, Jonathan. You've come out and pushed for transparency, right? You want her to release Wall Street transcripts. Something that makes perfect sense, but Sanders hasn't been completely transparent either. His tax returns, he's not released all of them.

Here's how he explained that to Jake Tapper.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You know who does our tax returns? My wife does our tax returns. We have been a bit busy lately. So, we will get out as much information as we can. There aren't going to be very much exciting in that. I get a salary from the United States Senate, you know?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: All right. May make sense, Jonathan, but why not pay an accountant this year?

TASINI: When I heard that, I looked it up and he did release his tax returns from 2014, which showed that he made under $200,000, mostly his Senate salary. But, look, come on --

BURNETT: Right, the first two pages he did last June.

SELLERS: He didn't release a complete return.

TASINI: But, let's talk honestly. Nobody doubt that Bernie Sanders lives a very, very modest life with a very modest income that's very different from the $100 million that Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton have gotten for paid speeches. They are multimillionaires. They are in the -- not just the 1 percent, but the top tenth of 1 percent.

SELLERS: But that's not the point, Jonathan.

TASINI: Bernie Sanders is of modest means. Everybody knows that.

BURNETT: Bakari, you get the last word. Jonathan had the first.

(CROSSTALK)

SELLERS: You can't ask for transparency on one side and not deliver on the other side. You want to see the Wall Street speeches on one hand, but then you don't want to disclose your tax returns on the other hand. I mean, if you want both candidates to be treated fairly, if you want the transparency, then Bernie Sanders needs to display it and show his tax returns. Not just a page, but all of them.

BURNETT: Thanks to both of you.

TASINI: And showed his income states through 2014. They're the same.

BURNETT: First three pages, not the full thing. Just to be exact.

All right. Thanks to both.

OUTFRONT next, Sanders and Clinton neck and neck in Wisconsin. Could one specific group of voters decide who will win? We have a special report on that next.

And Paul Ryan insisting he' not running for president.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: I think you need to run for president if you're going to be president. I'm not running for president, so, period, end of story.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: So, why does his name keep coming up as the GOP nominee?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:40:58] BURNETT: We have breaking news right now. After days of heated debate about their next debate, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have set a date to face in New York. CNN will host it.

Our political executive editor, Mark Preston, is here with the details -- Mark.

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICAL EXECUTIVE EDITOR: Well, certainly, Erin, there's been a lot of talk about when, if, how would the Democratic candidates, Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, debate before the New York primary. Well, they have reached an agreement.

Now, they will do it on CNN as well as New York 1, the Time Warner cable station in New York City. They will do it on April 14th in primetime between the hours of 9:00 and 11:00 p.m. Eastern Time.

As we all know, the New York primary is going to mean quite a lot in this Democratic race at this point. Bernie Sanders, of course, was born in Brooklyn. Hillary Clinton's headquarters is in Brooklyn right now. So, April 14th. The debate over the debate before the New York primary appears now to be put to rest. Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, April 14th here on CNN.

BURNETT: All right. Mark Preston, thank you very much.

And, of course, as he said, April 14th right here on CNN.

Well, at this moment, it's Wisconsin we're counting down to. Hours away from the polls opening, live pictures of Bernie Sanders rally that's about to get started tonight in Milwaukee. And a big source of his support is college students around the country and in Wisconsin. In that state, they can register to vote on the same day as the primary.

Sara Sidner is OUTFRONT.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SANDERS: Thank you, Madison.

(CHEERS)

SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Bernie Sanders turning up the heat on Hillary Clinton in the battle for Wisconsin. Ground zero for the Sanders campaign? The University of Wisconsin Madison with some 43,000 potential voters.

AUGUST MCGINNITY-WAKE, COLLEGE DEMOCRATS OF UW MADISON: You only get one presidential election when you're in college, when you're an undergrad student in college, so this is it for us. This is the one, so people are pumped.

SIDNER: Junior Jackie Spaight is so pumped, she's stumping for Sanders on campus.

JACKIE SPAIGHT, UW MADISON STUDENT: There's never been a political candidate that I've agreed with so much on, so it's pretty cool.

SIDNER: She's an example of the latest poll results, showing among likely Democratic primary voters, 18 to 29 years old, eight in 10 pick Sanders.

SPAIGHT: It's frustrating to me to be told you're not a feminist because you're a woman and you're a Bernie supporter, because I would love to see a woman president, but I don't really agree with Hillary on everything. So, you know, it's about representation versus policy and politics.

SIDNER: But down the hill, Badgers for Hillary have been working feverishly to tell their peers Clinton's policy show she has what it takes.

BRENDAN COHEN, UW MADISON STUDENT: For me, it comes down to experience. She's the most experienced candidate in the race from senator to secretary of state. Some people are making really big promises, but it's hard to see how they'll come true. And I think we realize that real change comes through real plans. And I think Hillary Clinton should be the best candidate.

BRIANNA KOERTH, UW MADISON STUDENT: Being pro-choice, Hillary Clinton pushed legislation through, while she was in the Senate. Whereas Sanders has the right stance, but I don't think he's been the strongest advocate me as Hillary has been.

SIDNER: When it comes to young voters who are under 30 years old, they have a history of showing up here in bigger numbers than in some other states.

JOE ZEPECKI, DEMOCRATIC POLITICAL ANALYST: Eight years ago, it was the 2008 primary. Voter aged 18 to 29 made up 16 percent, 17 percent of the electorate. That's a pretty sizable chunk. I think you might see it a little bit higher than that on Tuesday.

SIDNER: Wisconsin is one of 11 states plus D.C. that allows for same date registration, which tends to increase the number of youth at the polls.

SPAIGHT: I think we're expecting a really big turnout. And when that happens, we win.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SIDNER: So, there's going to be a bit of a caveat this year. For the first time ever, the citizens here are going to face very strict new photo identification requirements, or to vote. They haven't had to deal with that before, and that a lot of critics may affect the youth vote and impact this upcoming primary -- Erin.

BURNETT: Thank you, Sara. Obviously, it could be crucial for Sanders.

Well, OUTFRONT next, Trump fearing Republicans pushing Paul Ryan for president. Could Ryan leave the contested convention as the GOP without getting a single popular vote?

And Jeanne Moos on every candidate's favorite acquisition this year.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Ted Cruz is the single biggest liar.

[19:45:01] SANDERS: Donald Trump is a pathological liar. (END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BURNETT: How many ways can Paul Ryan say no? Well, the House speaker today saying he doesn't want to be the Republican presidential nominee.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

RYAN: I do believe people put my name in this thing. I said get my name out of that. If you want to be president, you should go run for president. And that's the way I see it.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: And yet he can't stop the speculation. Is Paul Ryan as the GOP nominee just a dream for the GOP establishment or could there be truth to it?

Our senior political reporter Manu Raju is on Capitol Hill.

And, Manu, a lot this comes to the fact that Paul Ryan said he didn't want to be speaker and yet here he is. He is now speaker. So, that's why people say, does no really mean no?

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: That's exactly right. They really hope folks in the party establishment that eventually, if there's a deadlock in the convention, that after vote after vote after vote, if there's nobody who can swoop in, maybe Paul Ryan can the way he did with the speakership, when he said no after John Boehner resigned and after Kevin McCarthy said he would not run. Paul Ryan ultimately did.

But when I was speaking to folks who are close to Paul Ryan, one source in particular told me earlier today, look, the difference between the speakership and presidential nominee is in the speakership, Paul Ryan made very clear, he needed to unite the conference behind him, get all factions of the party behind him, and they did. In this case, he -- they not unite behind him. It would be very divisive. It would be very ugly.

Ted Cruz and Donald Trump supporters would be unhappy with him and there are things in Paul Ryan's record that anger folks on the right.

[19:50:03] So, this would not be a clear choice for him and they want to make very clear, nothing public or private, Paul Ryan is doing to secure the Republican nomination. That's why they're trying to tamp down this talk right now, Erin.

BURNETT: They're trying to tamp it down but there are those who will not allow themselves to be tamped like Karl Rove. Here he is.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

KARL ROVE, GOP STRATEGIST: The fresh face might be the thing to give us a chance to turn this election and win in November against Hillary.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: Fresh face code for Paul Ryan?

RAJU: Absolutely. And these are the folks who continue to push this narrative as we head into the convention.

But I should reiterate that there are things Paul Ryan has done in his past like immigration reform and votes on the budget that have angered folks on the right. So, even if folks in the establishment in the establishment try to pop up Paul Ryan, you're going to have a lot of anger on the right because much things Paul Ryan has done in the past, which is exactly why Paul Ryan wants nothing to do with this right now, but there's probably nothing he can do to tamp down this kind of talk.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Manu.

And Doug Heye was communications director for the Republican National Committee, senior aide to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.

So, k how this can happen better than anybody. I know you yourself would probably be happy with a Paul Ryan on the ticket. But listen to what Ted Cruz said earlier today about what would happen if Paul Ryan indeed emerged from the convention as the nominee?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This fevered pipe dream of Washington that at the convention they will parachute in some white knight who will save the Washington establishment, it is nothing less than a pipe dream. It ain't going to happen. If it did, the people would quite rightly revolt.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Is he right? The people would revolt?

DOUG HEYE, FORMER COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR, REPUBLICAN NAT'L COMMITTEE: I think there are a million scenarios where people might revolt anyways. Look, we're going to go into this probably very divided as a party and maybe come out of it very divided as a party. If you are a Ted Cruz supporter, you're not likely to vote for Donald Trump on the fourth or fight ballot. Same thing if you are a Trump delegate.

It's part of why we find ourselves in the delicate position we're in.

BURNETT: OK, fair point. But you originally had 17 people running for the Republican nomination. Do you remember when we had to have two debates back-to-back? This seems like ancient history, right? There were so my people running.

Does it seem desperate to talk about nominating someone who was not even ever on a ballot? Was not even one of the 17?

HEYE: Yes. Actually, I'm trying to forget when I had to watch two debates a night. It was taxing on all of us.

But, look, I think a lot of people are desperate. When our front- runner is at record high unfavorables, 85 percent of Hispanics, 73 percent of women. When 51 percent of white males disapprove of Donald Trump and that's his base, it tells you that we have real problems if we nominate this front-runner.

BURNETT: So, you know, with voters being so angry and against the establishment, if you actually ended up in a situation where someone like Paul Ryan or someone else who didn't get millions of votes and actually go through the process, became the nominee, what would happen?

HEYE: Well, I don't think anybody really knows what would happen. That's why we see ourselves trying to sort out every different scenario that's possible. You know, you mentioned the other people who have run. Scott Walker is somebody who could, in theory, get this, or Marco Rubio.

It's why we've seen so often day after day talk of contested conventions that was dismissed three months ago, nine months ago. It's a real possibility and it's almost like opening day of baseball, Erin. Anything can happen.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much. That is why --

HEYE: Go Tar Heels tonight. Go Tar Heels!

BURNETT: That's right. I saw your tie.

HEYE: Thank you.

BURNETT: OUTFRONT next, Jeanne Moos on what may be the one thing all the candidates agree on. Their rivals are liars.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:57:28] BURNETT: A reminder of our breaking news: Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have set a date to face off in New York. It's a DNC sanctioned debate. CNN will host it in Brooklyn next Thursday, April 14th at 9:00 Eastern, right here on CNN.

Well, the "L" word is usually avoided, just out of politeness, even when you mean it. But it has been heavily used this election. Here's Jeanne Moos.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Remember when the L word was all about lesbians? Well, in campaign 2016, this is the L word on everyone's lips.

TRUMP: And then he lies. I never saw a guy lie like this guy.

MOOS: Trump says it about Ted Cruz and Hillary Clinton.

TRUMP: She lies like crazy about everything.

MOOS: Hillary says it about the Sanders campaign.

CLINTON: I am so sick of the Sanders campaign lying about me. I'm sick of it!

MOOS: Sanders says it about Trump --

SANDERS: Donald Trump say pathological liar.

MOOS: And Trump has turned it into a nickname.

TRUMP: I call him Lyin' Ted. He's Lyin' Ted Cruz.

MOOS: A name even a pro-Kasich super PAC has jumped on.

AD NARRATOR: Many just call him "Lyin' Ted".

MOOS: Making his nose grow.

AD NARRATOR: He lied about Ben Carson to steal a win in Iowa.

MOOS: Slithering around his neck like a python trying to strangle him.

AD NARRATOR: If Ted Cruz's mouth is moving, he's lying.

MOOS: But I tell you no lie when I say the award for most accusations of lying uttered in a single paragraph goes to Ben Shapiro.

The conservative commentator trashed Trump after that female reporter was grabbed by the Donald's campaign manager.

BEN SHAPIRO, CONSERVATIVE COMMENTATOR: I mean, look, lying liars lie. This is the Trump campaign where lies are told and then lies are told to cover up the lies, and then finally, new lies are told in order to cover up the lies that were told about the lies.

MOOS: Nine L words sort of makes the measly one shouted at President Obama by a Republican congressman --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You lie!

MOOS: -- seemed quaint.

When it comes to the most egregious untruths --

AARON SCHROCKMAN, POLITIFACT, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: Pants on fire. The 2015 PolitiFact lie of the year goes to the collective misstatements of Donald Trump.

MOOS: For campaign song of 2016,. we nominate the "Castaways" hit from 1965.

(MUSIC)

MOOS: Looks like we're going to need a bigger hose.

Jeanne Moos, CNN.

SANDERS: Pathological liar.

TRUMP: Biggest liar.

MOOS: -- New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BURNETT: Thank you so much for joining us. We'll see you back here same time, same place tomorrow night on the Wisconsin primary. That crucial day tomorrow.

"ANDERSON COOPER 360" starts right now.