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Hannity

Is Obama showing weakness on the world stage?

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," September 25, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: Tonight, the hit-and-run is complete. And at this very hour, President Obama's back in Washington after fleeing New York City and the United Nations General Assembly. That means yet again he is free to resume his daily routine of fundraising, hobnobbing with celebrities and campaigning.

And as we reported last night during his brief visit to New York, he found time to sit down for an interview with, yes, the ladies of "The View." And today, he even cleared a few minutes on his schedule to deliver well, a quick speech at the U.N.

However, he did declined to meet with a single world leader while he was on the ground. That makes him the first president in more than two decades to avoid his counterparts on a U.N. trip.

In addition, he uttered the word "terrorist" only once today. Now, ironically the same amount of times that he tweeted about the ongoing NFL/referee labor dispute.

Now, it's statistics like these that clearly show where the President's priorities lie. Let's see, Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar, well, that trumps Benjamin Netanyahu. Pro-football matters are more urgent in the threat that are post by terrorist.

And if you needed any more proof that this president is not interested in siding with our allies in Israel, well, it came yesterday. What you are seeing is the American delegation, watch them, they're listening intently to President "Adolf" Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as he delivered his remarks -- you know, the same remarks in which he declared that Israel will quote, "be eliminated."

Now, that's a type of hateful rhetoric that our representatives patiently were listening to on Monday. Oh, by the way, we're just learning from reports that Iran is now test-firing missiles, ones that are designed to hit warships. And by the way, the Iranians are now bragging to the world that they've developed long-range drones capable of carrying bombs and missiles to anywhere in the Middle East. So, we're glad that everyone welcomed with open arms "Adolf Jr." to the U.N.

But today, it was President Obama who took to the podium, and it wasn't long before he used his time in the spotlight to bash that anti-Muslim YouTube trailer once again -- you know, the one that was released in July that initially he blamed on all of the violence in the Middle East. Here's what he said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: That is what we saw play out in the last two weeks. It was a crude and disgusting video, sparking outrage throughout the Muslim world.

OBAMA: The United States government had nothing to do with this video.

OBAMA: We understand why people take offense to this video because millions of our citizens are among them.

OBAMA: I know there are some who ask why don't we ban such a video?

OBAMA: There's no video that justifies an attack on an embassy.

OBAMA: Any more than the views of the people that produced this video represents views of Americans.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: All right. Wait a minute. I'm confused. So, now we're back to blaming the video for the terrorist attack? Now, weren't we told it was, quote, "self-evident" by Jay Carney that this was all the work of Al Qaeda? All right. Well, first of all we're told, it was all because of the video. Then it was terrorism, then it was Al Qaeda.

My head is spinning trying to keep up with the changing versions and the finger-pointing that goes on. So, let's call this what it is. It is a cover-up by the administration.

And by the way, a pair of senators must be smelling the same stink, because they are demanding that the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton release Ambassador Stevens' diplomatic cables.

And amazingly enough, just a few short blocks away from the U.N. where our president continued to condemn this YouTube trailer, well, we are awaiting this week the return of the biggest piece of trash disguised as so-called art, that is the photo that is depicting a crucifix that is submerged in the artist's urine. Now, we didn't hear the president decried this garbage from his U.N. soapbox, as a matter of fact we heard nothing.

And joining me now with reaction, our former New Hampshire governor, a one-man Romney supporting wrecking crew, John Sununu, along with Fox News contributor Joe Trippi. Welcome both of you.

You know, Joe, maybe you can help me out here. Has anybody drawn more attention to this trailer that has trashed a cartoonish -- it was so poorly amateurishly put together -- than the president of the United States? Why does he continue to obsess on this?

JOE TRIPPI, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: He didn't obsess. He said that the video was wrong and bad. And yes, it was. And he said the same thing --I disagree with you, Sean. He mentioned that we shouldn't -- you know, freedom of speech is important, but you --

HANNITY: No, no, no. Joe, he's been saying this from the beginning. It's the video, it's the video.

TRIPPI: No.

HANNITY: Wait a minute. He sent Susan Rice out there, Jay Carney out there.

TRIPPI: He said --

HANNITY: Hang on a second. Sent them out there for days telling the American people that on the anniversary of 9/11, the attacks on all of our embassies, the death of four Americans, was all related to this video, nothing to do with the U.S., nothing to do with the anniversary of 9/11.

TRIPPI: Right.

HANNITY: So, why does he keep promoting it, so now if anybody doesn't know about it, they will?

TRIPPI: No. He said in his speech, that not just this video, but any video that goes against Christianity, offends Christianity, Jews, anti-Semitism, any of that has no place, but it's also no excuse for violence. He made that very clear in the speech, Sean. I mean, he did. I mean, that's the facts. I mean, the thing is he -- he stood on the world stage and gave that speech.

HANNITY: All right. Governor?

TRIPPI: -- and I thought it was exactly what he needed to say.

JOHN SUNUNU, ROMNEY SUPPORTER: Joe, there is no way he could have -- he should have referred to the video almost 10 times in that speech.

Look, this is a president who is trying to hide the fact that we knew ahead of time that September 11th was going to be a horrible day, that poor Ambassador Stevens understood he was in serious trouble there, that we left him under protected, and that the assault was not a demonstration --

TRIPPI: We didn't know any of that.

SUNUNU: -- the assault was not a demonstration, but a well-planned military movement attacking on three sides with rocket-propelled grenades, and it was deliberately designed to be a September 11th assault. It had nothing to do with the video. And shame on this president for going back, trying to hide the facts by saying it over and over again in New York.

TRIPPI: We don't know any of that. We may know that when all the facts are in and it's all investigated, and it will be, but at the time this happened, that is not what we knew.

HANNITY: Hey, Joe, stop for a second. Joe, wait a minute.

SUNUNU: They admitted it yesterday, and the day before, and now he's retreating again. Look, let me tell you what the big problem with this president is, in my opinion. He's absolutely lazy and detached from his job. When he doesn't go and attend 60 percent of the detailed presidential daily briefings that come from the CIA and thinks he can just skim it, skim the summery paper on his iPad instead of sitting down and engaging in what I -- I was in a White House with George Herbert Walker Bush. He took that brief every day. George W. Bush took it every day. And I believe that Bill Clinton took it every day.

This president thinks he's smarter than those guys and he doesn't have to engage in the discussion. That's the most important half hour of the day for a president who has to protect the security of the United States.

HANNITY: You know, Joe, let me add another thing here.

TRIPPI: George Herbert Walker Bush did not hold any bilateral meetings at the U.N. Assembly in 1992.

HANNITY: All right. I don't want to talk about -- George Herbert Walker Bush is up for reelection in 42 days. Wait a minute. Wait a minute.

(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)

TRIPPI: He was up for re-election and you've been saying that no president avoided bilateral communications. George Herbert Walker Bush did the same thing.

HANNITY: Hang on a second. Joe, Joe, this is what you're missing. The president of the United States is lying to the families of four dead Americans.

TRIPPI: He is not lying. He's not lying.

HANNITY: Because, wait a minute. If this was a spontaneous attackthey said it was, did they just happened to have in their back pocket, a rocket-propelled grenade, if it wasn't a planned, orchestrated attack? Did they just happen to have a mortar round in their back pocket that they were firing at the embassy?

TRIPPI: Sean, Sean --

HANNITY: And wait a minute. And why were the American embassies attacked?

TRIPPI: Sean, wait for me for a second. When Libya fell, when the government collapsed, there were thousands and thousands of RPGs that were missing. We all know that. That's a fact.

HANNITY: So, the spontaneous thing, they just happened to bring to a spontaneous rally --

TRIPPI: They are all over -- no, no. I'm not doing the spontaneous rally thing. I'm saying, these weapons are all over that country. This isn't like, you know, everything's walked in.

HANNITY: Why didn't he beef up security on the anniversary of 9/11?

TRIPPI: Those are things that will be -- if there's an investigation -- look, you don't say it's terrorism -- if you're a government you don't say it's terrorism until you know it's terrorism. So yes, four or five days later --

SUNUNU: Joe, let me ask you a question. Let me ask you a question.

TRIPPI: -- that's what they've been saying.

SUNUNU: And here's the chance for you to show me up.

TRIPPI: How's they're a cover-up?

SUNUNU: Joe, here's a chance for you to show me up.

TRIPPI: OK.

SUNUNU: I admit I haven't got the slightest idea what in God's name this president means when he says our strategy in that part of the world is to lead from behind. Why don't you explain to me --

TRIPPI: He never said that.

SUNUNU: -- so that I will then know it? What in God's name can you mean by "lead from behind"?

TRIPPI: Look, this President made a promise to the American people that we'd get out of Iraq. He did that. In the war in Afghanistan --

SUNUNU: You don't have an answer, right? You don't have an answer. Let me tell you why the answer is important since you don't have an answer.

TRIPPI: It's not leading from behind. He's leading, he's led us out of Iraq.

SUNUNU: That's what he called it, he called it that.

TRIPPI: No, he didn't say that.

SUNUNU: And the reason it's important --

TRIPPI: He didn't say that.

SUNUNU: -- is that we have lost respect in that region. That is a region of the world were you must lead by respect. Not by popularity.

TRIPPI: Right.

SUNUNU: Not by the warmth and charm of the president, but by respect, by the strength of the United States, the resolve of the United States, the clear agenda of the United States, the commitment of the United States. On issues like Iran's nuclear power, this guy has drifted for four years, wandering around without crippling sanctions on these people, and we're going to end up one day with a nuclear power there that is so mischievous it will scare the hell out of everyone.

TRIPPI: He has built a coalition worldwide, unity on sanctions, stronger than any sanctions ever put on Iran.

HANNITY: Oh, stop it, Joe.

TRIPPI: He has.

HANNITY: Stop it.

TRIPPI: He has. He has. No.

(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)

HANNITY: Hang on. I'm quoting, "Iran, Cuba, Venezuela, those countries are tiny. They don't represent a threat." Who said that, Joe? Do you know?

TRIPPI: Who said what?

HANNITY: "Iran, Cuba, Venezuela, those countries are tiny. They're not a threat." Who said that?

TRIPPI: I don't know, Sean.

HANNITY: Barack Obama said it.

SUNUNU: Barack Obama said it. Barack Obama said, we needed to get rid of Assad 14 months ago, and he's been sitting around watching the Russians pump weapons into Syria without having a serious conversation with the Russians.

HANNITY: All right. Let me move the ball a little bit. Let me move the ball here a little bit. I have no problem with the president going on "The View." I think he should go on. They have a big audience. I think it's a good choice. I don't have a problem.

SUNUNU: And he's eye candy, right?

HANNITY: Whatever. Yes, exactly. That's what I read.

But here's the thing. He's not going to meet with Bibi Netanyahu. We have 20 countries and more, two continents now, on fire, ablaze, our flags ripped down, our ambassadors killed, Navy SEALs killed, "Death to America" being chanted. Of course, he says that has nothing to do with America. But the president goes on "The View." Won't meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, because then he would have to meet with 10 other leaders.

Oh, should we not burden the poor president? Obviously, what we see here is a priority, sitting down with Letterman, and meeting Beyonce, and hanging out with Jay-Z, but not meeting with world leaders as world terrorism looms and Americans were killed.

TRIPPI: He's been talking to all of these world leaders -

HANNITY: Talking to all of them.

TRIPPI: He has. Yes, he has. He's talked to Netanyahu, the president of --

HANNITY: Why wouldn't he meet with them?

TRIPPI: -- and Libya. There's no need.

HANNITY: There's no need?

TRIPPI: Look, there's other things to -- no.

HANNITY: What other things to do, "The View"?

TRIPPI: No, no. Yes. You know, what?

HANNITY: Letterman, Vegas?

TRIPPI: The guy can govern and do other things at the same time.

SUNUNU: But let me tell you what he can't do. He goes on Letterman. Letterman starts talking about the debt. Letterman says, it's $10 trillion. The president says, well, I don't know what the number is. How can he not know it's $16 trillion? How can he be president of the United States and not know it's $16 trillion?

TRIPPI: This is really simple. The president said this himself. If Mitt Romney believes the country should go to war, he should say so. He thinks we need to do that.

HANNITY: Joe, this isn't about Mitt Romney. The world is --

(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)

TRIPPI: Oh, it's not about Mitt Romney?

Sean, we had this conversation. Look, the Middle East has been burning for 2,000 years, I know you get upset every time I say that.

HANNITY: Not like this.

TRIPPI: Oh, yes, are you kidding me? Not like this.

HANNITY: Flags being ripped down and burned.

TRIPPI: Beirut, Beirut, Beirut under Reagan.

(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)

HANNITY: This is all happening now in one place! He's going to Vegas.

TRIPPI: This is like -- look, we have U.S. assets all around the world. Every president's had this kind of situation happen much worse than this one. And this president believes you go get the guy -- it's not bravado, you don't say bring it on, you don't send 200,000 troops in.

HANNITY: Why not? Why not? There's four dead Americans. Why not?

TRIPPI: You go get the -- you find out who did it and you kill them. And that's what happened with Usama bin Laden on this president's watch. It's not words, it's not rhetoric.

HANNITY: Spiking the football, Joe.

TRIPPI: Oh, spiking the football is just saying -- it's rhetoric, all this is, is garbage rhetoric.

SUNUNU: Come on, Joe!

HANNITY: All right. Hang on.

SUNUNU: You're defending the indefensible.

TRIPPI: No, I'm not.

SUNUNU: This is a president that has cost us respect in a part of the world where respect --

TRIPPI: Let's go back to the Bush doctrine --

(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)

HANNITY: One at a time. The governor.

Joe, let me the governor finish a sentence. Go ahead, Governor.

SUNUNU: Look, Joe, this is a critical time. This is a part of the world where a transition was taking place. And we should have been there leading it. We should have been there putting pressure on the Russians not to be supplying Assad. We should have been there providing assistance to those that were fighting in the right direction rather than just letting the vacuum be filled by the folks that we don't want running these countries. We were not doing that.

TRIPPI: That's not true.

SUNUNU: This president thought by going to Cairo, and talking soft, that he all of a sudden going to move the Muslim world because of his relationship with them.

TRIPPI: No. They were men like Chris Stevens fighting to move this forward. And I would caution everybody is it, in an area like the Middle East with the factions that exist --

HANNITY: Joe --

TRIPPI: Hold on. With the factions that exist there, anybody who thought, who believes that you can say something worked or didn't work after three years in a place that's been burning for 2,000 years --

HANNITY: Let me ask you this.

TRIPPI: -- is greatly misguided.

SUNUNU: Do you think it's a bump in the road?

HANNITY: Just a bump in the road. Yes.

SUNUNU: Do you think it's a bump in the road?

HANNITY: And noise?

TRIPPI: Yes, I think you're going to have several more of these kinds of attacks.

HANNITY: Bumps in the road? Four dead Americans are a bump in the road? You don't think that's insulting?

TRIPPI: That's not what the president meant --

HANNITY: That's exactly what the President said. He said, "It's a bump in the road."

TRIPPI: No, that's not what he meant.

SUNUNU: Joe, what he was trying to do with that phrase was to gloss over a difficult question. And he made a dumb mistake. And he has to deal with that dumb mistake. He thought he could gloss over and suggest that it was not a critical issue.

TRIPPI: The dumb mistake was Romney --

HANNITY: All right. Let me move on. Joe, let me ask you this. Hang on a second.

TRIPPI: It was Romney making statements before he knew any of the facts at all late that night.

SUNUNU: But he turned out to be right, didn't he? Because the White House confirmed he was right --

TRIPPI: No, he hasn't turned out to be right.

HANNITY: Joe, let me ask you.

TRIPPI: Yes, Sean.

HANNITY: Do you think that our representatives at the United Nations should have picked up with Israel when "Adolf" Ahmadinejad talks about destroying Israel again? Do you think it's appropriate for our delegation to sit there during that moment?

TRIPPI: I think the delegation -- you know, I don't know the answer to that one. I mean, I think that the -- that the administration has made some mistakes, but I don't know that that was one of them.

HANNITY: Joe, let me ask you one more question. Do you think we ought to be -- if this ambassador --

TRIPPI: I mean, we're sitting here talking about free speech.

HANNITY: Hold on a second. The ambassador writes inside of his diary that he was fearful of his life. Now, he wrote that in his own diary, I think it's a pretty obvious conclusion to draw that he had to tell somebody people at the State Department, people that he worked for, this is Benghazi, where it's a known terrorist training site in the world. He had to tell other people, probably people in the State Department, White House, what was going on there. Don't you think that all of these cables should be released and released tomorrow so that the families can have some closure as to what happened and an answer to the question of why the president didn't beef up security in such a critical part of the world, dangerous part of the world on the anniversary of 9/11?

TRIPPI: No, I don't think they should be released. I don't know, we don't know what classified information is in those documents.

HANNITY: I'm not looking for classified. Did he --

TRIPPI: No, I think, look, I'm sure they will be released once there's an investigation --

HANNITY: After the election.

TRIPPI: After the investigation is over.

SUNUNU: Let's not talk about what could have happened before --

TRIPPI: And by the way, Stevens should have --

SUNUNU: Let me ask you about afterwards. Don't you think it's irresponsible and unconscionable for this administration to not have gone in and looked for things so that Ambassador Stevens' diary would not have been found by a press group but would actually have been taken out by the U.S.? And shouldn't we have been looking for that and other things in there before we left it four days unexamined?

TRIPPI: There was no -- as best I know, there weren't any Americans left there. They had all been withdrawn immediately during the --

SUNUNU: But there was material, there was certainly material there since they found it.

TRIPPI: Yes, there was. That's right. I think it was irresponsible for Romney to go out and make comments before knowing what's going on.

HANNITY: All right. One last segment here.

SUNUNU: We've got to get professional with our foreign policy. We have to understand there is some reality to peace through strength and trying to be soft and apologetic as a foreign policy tool is the dumbest thing we can do.

TRIPPI: The president made no apology in that speech today.

HANNITY: Joe, let me ask you this question. Joe --

TRIPPI: And he was very strong in his speech.

HANNITY: Joe, he was pandering and it was not -- I was embarrassed, frankly, watching him give the speech and talk about --

TRIPPI: Yes. I was proud of him.

HANNITY: I notice that he didn't talk about down the block, was a crucifix submerged in urine. He didn't feel a compulsion to go out and pander --

TRIPPI: Read the speech! Read the speech. He said -- read the speech.

HANNITY: Joe, Joe, you got to stop interrupting. One at a time. So, let me hold up for you here. This is a picture of --

TRIPPI: OK. You guys can interrupt me, I won't interrupt you.

HANNITY: This is a picture of President -- that's the way it works. This is a picture of President Morsi, and he -- former Muslim Brotherhood head -- referred to the Israelis as vampires, supported Hamas, a terrorist organization, was part of a terrorist organization, gets $2 billion, American dollars, a year, and I want to know, he says that we're not necessarily an ally of Egypt, he's aligning with Iran.

Why should we give more cent to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt? Can you explain why that should be American policy?

TRIPPI: Well, I don't think -- I hope John Sununu doesn't think we should withdraw completely from Egypt in this critical transition stage.

SUNUNU: No, I don't. But what I do think --

(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)

I'll tell you what I do think.

HANNITY: We'll have to take a break. We'll come back on this --

SUNUNU: I do think Mitt Romney's idea of conditionality on the funds is the right thing to do. When you give people money, you have to tell them what you expect of them, and you expect them to deliver.

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