Schmidt: There Will Be An Organized Effort By Clinton To Grab The Republican Foreign Policy Establishment


STEVE SCHMIDT: You're going to see a concerted and organized effort by the Hillary Clinton campaign to go after senior members of the Republican foreign policy establishment. Big names. I'm not trying to put a partisan imprint on David Petraeus. But names like Petraeus, retired General Odierno, Colin Powell, Brent Scowcroft. Men and women who served in senior positions, in national security positions, in Republican administrations. The Clinton campaign's going to go after them. They're going to go after them forcefully. And I think you look ahead now in the weeks to come. As Hillary Clinton moves beyond the Bernie Sanders challenge for the moment for Hillary Clinton to address Republicans in this country.

And maybe Hillary Clinton goes out there and says, earlier in this campaign I was asked a question about the enemies I was most proud of and I gave a flippant answer, I said Republicans. Let me be clear, I understand half this country identifies with the Republican party and we haven't always agreed, but I want to talk to you tonight and I want to tell you that while we won't always agree in the future, I want to invite you to be part of this campaign and here's why. If you reject these aspects of the trump candidacy.

So I think the Clinton campaign is likely to be opportunistic at this moment of actual melt inside the Republican party. And there are real honest to goodness conversations taking place in Washington, D.C. That say, look, it's better to lose this election, for Hillary Clinton to be the president of the United States, to defend the institution of the Republican party, which is bigger than losing a single election.

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Steve, what happens if Hillary does make that move and wins the support of the Republican foreign policy establishment? Everybody knows what that means that she's more hawkish, that's why people like Gates and Henry Kissinger have gotten close to her on this. Isn't that going to send a signal to the Bernie Sanders people, against the Iraq War, against Hillary Clinton supporting that authorization of that war, isn't that going to cause a schism in the Democratic party?

SCHMIDT: It will cause a schism to some degree in the Democratic party. Look, how plausible is it these young Bernie Sanders voters are going to go for Donald Trump? We'll have to see. One thing we know as we get ready for a general election contest is that Donald Trump will be running to the left as we understand it against Hillary Clinton on national security issues. And the candidate in the race most like George W. Bush and Dick Cheney from a foreign policy perspective is in fact Hillary Clinton, not the Republican nominee.

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