Lessons from Wisconsin's recall

Gutfeld: What starts ugly, ends ugly


This is a rush transcript from "The Five," June 6, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GREG GUTFELD, CO-HOST: It's the biggest news in Wisconsin since the Packers won the World Series. Scott Walker routed the recall. It wasn't even close. But CNN kept calling it close. Perhaps they meant her.

But really -- that's Glenn Close, by the way. See, she's stabbing somebody. You can take it down now. There you go.

But perhaps it's this face that says it all. Yes. It seems like the neighbor kids might have stolen his rake.

Well, at least others are taking it well.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're not just disappointed. This is the end of democracy. We just got outspent $34 million to $4 million. This was -- this was the biggest election in America. I hope you keep me on tonight because this hurts us all. Every single one of you out there in the nation, if you're watching, democracy died tonight.



GUTFELD: "Democracy died tonight."

But some were gracious losers like this supporter greeting Tom Barrett.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Can I smack you? Will I get arrested?



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your city hasn't voted yet.

ATTENDEE: Security!


GUTFELD: I usually pay 40 bucks for that at John Gibson's place.

But look, what starts ugly ends ugly. Remember how it began, the mobs, the threats of violence? Yes, those were giddy days. When the media flocked like school girls to Wisconsin to watch David take down Goliath. Except, they got it backwards. Their David was actually Goliath.

So, when the heroism of Norma Rae became thuggery of on the waterfront, the media scram with the recall and OWS hacks, and even President Obama just kept falling in love with the crumb bums.

Of course, the left now cries about the cash spent on the recall. A recall they initiated. It's like smearing yourself with honey and then complaining about the bees.

Worse, Obama's people claiming voters sent a strong response to Walker. What message was that?


GUTFELD: I love de Niro.

The fact is, this election was a collection. With union overreach, someone had to slap the hand. It was Walker. Not Obama.

Obama stuck to Twitter, happy among 140 other minor characters.

Juan, I know you agree with everything I said so I don't know why I'm asking you this question. But Debbie Wasserman Schultz called the recall effort a dry run for what? Losing?

JUAN WILLIAMS, CO-HOST: No. Look, I think it was a big loss for the unions. I think it was devastating for the unions who definitely wanted to get Walker out of there.

But you know what? I think this is less of a Petri dish for the fall and for the November election than it is evidence of the power of Republican, national Republican money that went in there and really fed this recall, defended Walker against this recall effort. And I think it's an effort to break unions as a source of money for Democrats nationally. In that sense, it's really bad news, because there is no counter, the natural counter to the big money that comes from the Republican billionaires is the money that came from the unions.

GUTFELD: But, Dana, you are checking your head, like someone who shakes her head a lot. There is a point to this, though, because the unions are the foot soldiers for Democratic Party, often not by their own choice, though.

DANA PERINO, CO-HOST: But now they have athlete's foot and they need a cure. I'm back! I'm back.



PERINO: It's always an excuse -- they spent more money than we did. It couldn't possibly be because be Walker got results. It couldn't possibly be that the state of Wisconsin decided to hold their heads a little higher thinking that they had erased some of their debt, that they were back on path of fiscal sanity. That just couldn't possibly be true.

When it comes to Democrats, when you're explaining a loss like that, instead of just saying, well, this is a -- I'm going to use a banned phrase -- a teachable moment for the unions. Instead, they are basically just wallowing in their own unpopularity. And the reason it was national was not because Scott Walker wanted it to be national. The Democrats made it a national -- remember the whole --

GUTFELD: It was a big deal.

PERINO: Yes. All the strikes and all the protests and they stayed inside and they didn't shower for like six weeks. And a year and a half later, after he gets results, they have egg on their face, and it's because the Republicans made it a national race and put egg on their face? I don't get that.

GUTFELD: Yes, they asked for this fight.

Eric, what do you make of this? Is this the end of democracy as we know it?

BOLLING: No, here's what I make of it. I think if I were Mitt Romney, I would run out and hire Scott Walker's campaign -- the whole staff, take the campaign manager, take everyone, because Scott Walker was a better candidate. Scott Walker was better prepared. Scott Walker was placed out there better. And Scott Walker had better financing and better infrastructure.

So whatever Walker did, Mitt Romney should start taking note, make -- bring those people over.

But also, unions got thumped. They got trumped. They got spanked. And they got spanked by the taxpayer. And that -- that is unusual. That hasn't happened in a long time in American politics.

GUILFOYLE: That's why Obama should be very concerned about this. And when you think about the tens of millions of dollars that were put in deeply invested to unseat Walker, it was an abysmal failure when you look at the percentage point. It was a resounding victory and affirmation for what Walker was trying to do. And we see other cities and state trying to follow suit, which is going to be significant and a problem, along with the jobs numbers for Obama come November.

GUTFELD: Yes. I mean, the fact is, Walker was elected. He did what he was supposed to do. He got rid of the high-speed train which everybody --

PERINO: Thank goodness.

GUTFELD: Thank God.

PERINO: Well, when he got rid of the train, that actually was telling the federal government: we're going to not take $800 million worth of federal funds, because we think that this train is bad investment for our state, and we are going to walk away from it. And I think the people said we're with you on that. And they started seeing results.

And that's why, I think when you look across the country, to Republican governors all around, Daniels, Perry, Haley, Christie, McDonnell, Kasich, Jindal in particular, Pawlenty you could throw in there, Jeb Bush, they have true experience as executives. They are making a big difference. And that's where I think the real power is. That's where the --

GUILFOYLE: The leadership.

WILLIAMS: Now you're telling the truth and I appreciate it.


WILLIAMS: You said -- a minute ago, you said, oh, it was the Democrats that started this fight. It was Walker. It was Democrats --

PERINO: That they wanted the recall. That's what I meant.

WILLIAMS: No, no. What you said was they started it. Who started it? The people who said rather than negotiate with unions, we're going to strip you of all your bargaining rights and we're going to do it by forcing it through the Republican majority in the legislature. When the unions then responded and I don't think they responded all that effectively, with the big protest, ands the legislators, the Democrats, walking away from the state I think irresponsibly, and then it was at that point that you then had this big fight set up.

And I think you know what? Mitt Romney didn't show up to back Walker. President Obama didn't show up to back Walker.

GUILFOYLE: That wasn't Romney's fight.

BOLLING: All day, we saw -- it's too close to call. It's going to be a close race. Every network, every left-leaning network were saying, it's going to come to last-minute decision. What the vote turnout is going to be, it's going to dictate who wins.

Up until -- even through the exit polls, they were saying it's too close. It was a Walker landslide. It was a landslide.

GUTFELD: Forty-nine minutes -- 49 minutes they called it. That's a landslide.

BOLLING: CNN, what did they do?


GUTFELD: They switched to royalty.

BOLLING: They moved to covering the diamond jubilee. Instead of watching Governor Walker --

PERINO: See, if the Republicans had lost last night, this would be the biggest story going. You would have everybody saying, mm-hmm, exactly, this is what Obama is going to see in November. This is exactly how he's going to win.


PERINO: And instead you have -- now you're making fun of me?


PERINO: I'm actually mad at Juan right now.

WILLIAMS: You can be mad --

PERINO: Everybody else gets a walk-back but me. I said the Democrats initiated the recall. Scott walker didn't ask for the recall. That's my point. You are saying -- I didn't say that Scott Walker -- anyway.

Welcome back.


GUILFOYLE: Now you've done it. You've already upset her like Bob.

WILLIAMS: I didn't mean to upset you.

PERINO: You called me a liar.

WILLIAMS: I said you were wrong. I said you were wrong.

PERINO: No, you said --

GUTFELD: Voters in two major California cities, they're approving measures to cut retirement benefits.

GUILFOYLE: San Jose and San Diego.

GUTFELD: That's -- isn't it -- a Democrat is doing this. In San Jose, right, Juan?

So, it's like -- it's not just Republicans that are saying this is a problem. We can't afford this style of living anymore, right? We can't.

WILLIAMS: No, no, no. Listen, what you have is people who are saying we need to do something about debt. We need to do something about pensions. All of that is on the table. All of that is legitimate.

The question here was about Walker forcing this thing through in such a way as to absolutely antagonize, polarize the state of Wisconsin.

PERINO: Like Obamacare?

WILLIAMS: And doing so on a national agenda.

PERINO: That's what Obamacare is.

WILLIAMS: You know, of course it's not. You see --

PERINO: You don't think it's rammed through?

WILLIAMS: No, I do not --

PERINO: Under Democrat majority? Yes, it was.

WILLIAMS: Who creates this? Mitt Romney, Heritage. Let me ask you --

PERINO: They didn't ram it through Congress on the party of hope.

WILLIAMS: The national idea of the universal healthcare. And let me ask you: is there a public option in the healthcare plan that Obama put forward? No. Because of Republican opposition.

GUTFELD: You know what? We've got to go but we're going to come back to this, because it's getting quite heated. And I can Eric --

BOLLING: I intercepted a postcard. You have to check it out.


BOLLING: Take it two? Yes.

WILLIAMS: Yes. That's why the same voters that voted for Scott Walker also indicated they would support President Obama.

GUTFELD: However, you can't trust those exit polls because they said this was going to be close. And it wasn't close.

PERINO: And our colleague Michael Barone has gone through facts with his -- I trust his analysis, he said it was 48-48. So --

GUTFELD: All right. I'm getting yelled at by somebody in my ear. They're being quite rude!

All right. Governor Walker's victory and its impact on the November elections are coming up.

And don't miss the governor who's on "Hannity" tonight at 9 p.m. Eastern. That's a cute little show. I catch it from time to time.

And, is Bill Clinton becoming political liability for President Obama or is he just plain awesome? We'll talk about it just moments away.

And if you leave now, Dana will eat another innocent bunny.

PERINO: I might.

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