On a journalists’ roundtable on Friday’s Diane Rehm Show on National Public Radio, as they discussed Saturday’s Democratic debate, New York Times reporter Gardiner Harris broke out the trash talk, that Bernie Sanders will never, ever win:
HARRIS: Bernie has zero chance here, Diane. I'm sorry. He may have a chance in Iowa and in New Hampshire, because he does well among white liberals. He does disastrously among a huge core constituency of the Democratic Party, which is people of color. Hillary kills him on those things. So, he may, he may put a scare in the Clinton campaign in these first two primaries, but as soon as it moves to South Carolina, Hillary is going to rack up, according to every single prediction and every single poll, she will dominate from there on out.
Later, NPR’s host Diane Rehm added “And surely, Hillary did herself proud in front of that Congressional committee.” This led to more trash talk:
HARRIS: Oh, it was one long Hillary for President ad was what it was. For the Democrats, anyway. I mean, and once again, the Clintons have been blessed by their rivals, right? Because inevitably, the Republicans seem to overreach whenever they go after the Clintons. They did that during the Clinton administration when they impeached the President and led to a huge angry backlash. They've done it again on the Benghazi Committee, going after Mrs. Clinton. And what was remarkable was her control of the facts. And the fact that she was there for, what was it? 11 hours.
Earlier in the show, in an immigration discussion, Harris bluntly admitted that the Democrats have acted “in a very political manner” on illegal immigrants to solidify the Latino vote, and said this is going to be a terrible cycle for the Republicans with Latinos no matter what the courts decide:
HARRIS: I'll tell you what, Diane, it doesn't really matter. In many ways, the Obama administration acted in a very political manner to increase the ties that Hispanics have to the Democratic Party. You know, this was clearly an effort by the Obama administration to pay back Hispanics for the support for the Democrats and in hopes of continuing to keep Hispanics in the Democratic fold.
You know, what has happened during the Republican primary, in which Donald Trump has called Mexican immigrants criminals and, you know, what's going on in the Republican circle has so enraged Hispanics that I'm not really sure that Hispanics are going to hold the Obama administration and the Democratic Party, in general, to the technicalities as to whether they got this through the Supreme Court. It is a big priority of the Hispanic community, don't get me wrong. But events have so changed the political landscape here that -- it depends on who the nominee is, of course -- but if the nominee is anyone like Donald Trump or many of these others... .then this tie that the Democratic Party has with Hispanics in this country is only going to be so much stronger, with this case playing almost zero role.
CNN senior political reporter Manu Raju pegged the two sides of the immigration debate in the Republican Party: the pragmatic humanitarians vs. the nativists.
RAJU: I think it also exposes the divide within the Republican Party right now, you know, as Gardiner alluded to, that, you know, you have folks like in the Jeb Bush camp who believe we need to have a more humanitarian approach, a more pragmatic approach, a more business-minded approach. And then you have the more nativist approach in the Republican Party, who wants to round these folks up and deport them.
Harris even said the French-born soldier who was awarded a medal at the White House was a demonstration of how terrific the immigrants are: “And meanwhile, yesterday, the president gave the Congressional Medal of Honor to an Army captain, who came to this country as a kid and was a naturalized citizen, I think as a 17-year-old, and is only the 10th living recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor from the Afghanistan War. And, you know, it -- he's a demonstration, of course, of the extraordinary benefits that immigrants bring, although it was almost unmentioned yesterday in the ceremony and the aftermath.”