Gutfeld: Political scandal? What political scandal?

Why the Zimmerman trial was a coup for the Obama administration


This is a rush transcript from "The Five," July 23, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GREG GUTFELD, CO-HOST: So, the Zimmerman trial was a coup for the Obama administration. Think about it. Jump in the time machine that's your mind, and go back six weeks, and ponder the stories of the day before all of that happened. The IRS, the DOJ, Benghazi, a decaying economy, a health care bill that rivals the Hindenburg, hapless action in Syria and Egypt. It's a smorgasbord of scandal, a buffet of buffoonery, a dartboard of disgrace.

Instead, stories seem as distant as 8th grade spin the bottle. But unlike those memories, these were dead serious, exposing government corruption, intrusion, and cover-up. Now, we've replaced it with sideshows like stand your ground and seated moral authority to experts like Al Sharpton, Kirstie Alley, and Miley Cyrus.

But before you blame Obama, stop. Even though he commented on the story early on, he didn't choose to cover the damn thing 24/7. That was made by a media that felt the trial was indicative of a greater terrible truth about our society.

And now that we swam so far out to sea on this one, it's hard to return to shore and pick up where we left off. We can barely see Benghazi from here, and I, for one, can't remember who the hell James Rosen is.

Well done. Not only does trumped up racial division serve to disrupt the nation, it obscures major problems that affect all Americans, and unlike the great liberals of our time, we do let crises like the IRS and Benghazi go to waste.

But thank God for the royal baby. I wonder what he thinks about the Zimmerman case.

ERIC BOLLING, CO-HOST: Great liberals of our time?

GUTFELD: Great liberals of our time. That's the title of my next book.

BOLLING: Oxymoron.

GUTFELD: Yes, that is 12 pages.

OK. So, Eric, Daily Caller article, this is a big deal. IRS chief counsel William Wilkins met with the president two days before targeting Tea Party groups. Obviously, a coincidence.

BOLLING: Yes. And, by the way, the White House is pushing back on everything about that article. I saw the author of the article standing by his story. But it keeps going.

Carter Hall was one of the chief counsels in Washington, D.C. They found out that the reason they found this out is two people, remember there would be rogue agents in Cincinnati, they said we don't like being rogue agents. This wasn't our idea. It was Carter Hall in D.C.

We go to D.C. He testified and he said, you know, it goes up the ladder, goes to the chain. Your monologue, I assume is saying we have been distracted by the trials and what's most important is we should stay on some of the scandals because we need to have answers.


BOLLING: Totally agree.

GUTFELD: Yes. I mean, that's a problem.

It seems to me, Andrea, that the American public is being treated stupidly by the administration. They assume we cannot handle these things, so they just figure they can outlast them with every new story.

ANDREA TANTAROS, CO-HOST: And when there's 24 hour news, there's no news. I mean, people don't know what's news anymore, unfortunately. But, you know, it's interesting--a lot of the reporters as you mention in your monologue, they stopped covering it, even though the president wasn't talking about Zimmerman every day. That's not their beat.

Their job was to keep their nose to the grindstone on these stories, and many of them quit because I think, Greg, except for The Associated Press and FOX News scandal that involved them, the media, they were disinterested in these stories from the get-go. It took months for them to cover Benghazi. It took months for them to get involved in the IRS story--and begrudgingly. It really was one reporter at ABC News.

So, they're all too happy to stop and get back on everything but the scandals that hurt their beloved.


Dana, this IRS thing, so they meet Obama, the next day they sent additional comments on draft guidance.

DANA PERINO, CO-HOST: Yes. You can't imagine how that would happen. And even if--let's just say, let's give them the benefit of the doubt, say it was completely innocent. The problem is, is that for them, for the White House, is that these scandals and the way that they all came at once has taken a toll.

If you look at the McClatchy approval rating, it was 41 percent. President had gotten us out of two wars he said he was going to. The economy is apparently roaring back, and he's going to give a speech on that tomorrow. But 41 percent approval, that makes them for them to get anything else done.

I think it is--if--Bob is an expert, but if you look at the general feeling of the public, the distaste for what happened with the IRS has taken a toll on them in the poll.

GUTFELD: Bob, I remember must have been five or six weeks ago, you were a different person. You were sad. You were broken. Weren't you broken?

BOB BECKEL, CO-HOST: I still am.

GUTFELD: You are. But now, it's like you've been away for three weeks in Acapulco.

BECKEL: No, listen, I think the IRS scandal and the NSA rose above the Zimmerman trial. There's no question about that, and it sinks in. I think--I said this many weeks ago, IRS was the one scandal I think would hurt Obama and I think it does and is with people, because if you go into it, even before the scandal broke out, if you ask people in polls, what do you think about the IRS, they don't think it's fair. They always thought they were giving favoritism to somebody else.

Did they get a break with Zimmerman? Somewhat, yes, they did. And, frankly, I know you're not going to like this, but on Benghazi, I don't think there's anything anyway. So, I don't think--I mean, this guy Issa has been holding hearings up there. Nothing has come out of it.

PERINO: Although I do think--I don't necessarily fault the White House for this, they have been dragged around by the news cycle. President Obama would like us to go into August thinking Obamacare is going to work. He wants us to sign for exchanges on October 1st. That is his signature legislation. And every time he goes to give a speech, something else seems to happen that gets them off track to the point that now, they're having to do a lot of different--you know, bells and whistles to make it happen. The approval rating makes it more difficult at 41 percent.

Interestingly, you don't hear a lot of that echoed through the punditry, 41 percent approval rating is about where President Bush was in early '07 before the--

BECKEL: That's a dangerous level. I mean, you know, they've always--there's been a realm in the polling business, if you fall below 40 percent, very difficult to get back up.

TANTAROS: And his base has eroded. And I think what did that and if look at the numbers, NSA scandal, then the report that they're tracking license plates, that was something that stayed intact, his base was always with him. Now, it slipped.

And I have to say, I don't think him weighing in on this Trayvon Martin issue, saying that could have been him--I don't think that helps him. I think that told a lot of Democratic voters, maybe you'll disagree, Bob, a lot of people gave him the benefit of the doubt, that he would have made the exact same decisions Trayvon did, we would have had a racist friend like Rachel Jeantel, he would have tolerated those remarks about creepy ass cracker and the homophobic remark, and he would have done the same.

And I think a lot of people said, I don't really appreciate being called racist.

BECKEL: I think as a black man, I think he had to absolutely say it.

BOLLING: Had to--

TANTAROS: Had to say what he said?

BECKEL: I think he did.

TANTAROS: No, he didn't.


BOLLING: Why that, Bob?

BECKEL: Because I think he was trying --

BOLLING: Can I ask you the question?


BOLLING: Do you know this Roderick Scott story?


BOLLING: You know, this one up in Rochester, New York, where a black man who used self-defense to kill a--at the time a 16-year-old white kid he said was charging him, hadn't been hit, but shot him in self defense, and he was acquitted, the black man.

I mean, what about that one? It is the same exact thing. Opposite of Trayvon Martin.

BECKEL: They're not following that case, that's the difference.

BOLLING: OK. So the president follows the press? I mean, is that what you're saying?

BECKEL: I think it's fair to say that every White House in one way or another does follow the news cycle.

BOLLING: That's an interesting concept. I hope not.

BECKEL: Well, it's a little difficult to get out from underneath the news cycle in an overwhelming story. I mean, Dana I think would agree, it's very difficult to stand there and try to see if--

PERINO: I think he has to talk about it later, but the initial comment probably help fuel--

GUTFELD: Eric is talking about--

BOLLING: Hold on. What I'm saying is the president chose that Trayvon Martin case to get involved in. The press wasn't implicating the White House or tying it to the White House, calling the White House racist by any means. He is the one who brought himself in it.

BECKEL: I don't think there's any black man in America that doesn't feel the frustration of being tagged and I think he wanted to say it. I think he wanted to try to explain it to white people.

TANTAROS: He basically called us the racist country still and did not--and we'll get into it later, but--

BECKEL: Why do you say that?

TANTAROS: Basically said the people don't have the right to defend themselves. That's also very unfair to blacks in Florida who used stand your ground disproportionately more than whites. Why would he do that? Why would he make those comments, Bob?

BECKEL: I think he is trying to explain to people, very much like Eric Holder was, if you're black and you're a male, you're going to be targeted to be stopped for no reason whatsoever.

GUTFELD: But you know what the end result of that is, the piece you sent around in Daily Caller, you have a Princeton professor like Imani Perry who says her two black children cried and feared Zimmerman was coming to kill them once he was acquitted.

Whose fault is that? That's the parent's fault. You're scaring the hell out of your kids saying this guy will come kill them.

BECKEL: I had that dream myself.

GUTFELD: That was me.

PERINO: Instead, he's saving people from a car crash in Florida.

GUTFELD: I--that story we should get to that at some point, but I don't know much about it.

BOLLING: Ever notice there are a lot of those, a lot of people saving people from car crashes, especially when it kind of work--

TANTAROS: I guess they shouldn't stay in the cars sometimes.

BOLLING: Tom Cruise did it. Mark Harmon did. If I'm not mistaken, Charlie Sheen did it.


BECKEL: Wasn't there a theory that was set up by public relations people, stage car crashes so they can save you?



GUTFELD: That's an elaborate staging. You have to get the car to turn over.

Last question, though, Eric. The one thing we didn't talk about, Benghazi. So, you got the former head of U.S. Forces in Africa saying everybody knew it was a terrorist attack. However, that's kind of news, but nobody is reporting it.

BOLLING: Yes. What's it going to take, is there a Capitol Hill testimony that we can come back to and start talking about it again or is it going to be 2016, or '15--


BECKEL: Eric, what it's going to take is some evidence.

BOLLING: Some evidence?




TANTAROS: Where are the survivors?

BOLLING: We can ask Hillary who called for the stand down order. I would still like to know.

TANTAROS: Where are survivors and why are they asked to sign nondisclosures? Why can't they speak? We have heard more about Trayvon Martin than the deaths of Americans in Benghazi.

GUTFELD: The speech on Friday--

TANTAROS: One is a federal issue, one is a state issue.

GUTFELD: -- was easily way more substantial than we heard from on Benghazi from the president, in which four people died. So, I don't know.

I think we're going to stop now.

Coming up, Bill O'Reilly, you know that guy on TV, does a show, it is OK, kind of yells a lot, tall, always in some zone.


GUTFELD: O'Reilly, that's it. He takes on President Obama and the civil rights movement.


BILL O'REILLY, FOX NEWS HOST: The thugs that sell hard drugs, no matter what color they are, deserve to be put away for long periods of time. They sell poison, they sell a product that enslaves and kills. They're scum. When was the last time you heard the Congressional Black Caucus say that? How about Jackson and Sharpton? How about President Obama?


GUTFELD: All right, I'll get off your lawn!

Anyway, you're going to hear more from Bill when we get back.

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