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Kelly File

Rubio, Christie, Kasich make final New Hampshire push on 'The Kelly File'

This is a rush transcript from "The Kelly File," February 8, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MEGYN KELLY, HOST: Breaking tonight. New polls just out point to a fierce fight just hours away from the first primary of the 2016 race for the White House.

Good evening, and welcome to "The Kelly File" everyone, live from Manchester, New Hampshire, it does look like I'm in my living room but we are at the beautiful -- from college.

I'm Megyn Kelly. Here's one of the latest polls showing Donald Trump leading the field by more than 20 points at 34 percent. Senator Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio tied for second with 13 percent. Governors John Kasich and Jeb Bush are neck and neck in third with 10 percent. And then Governor Chris Christie has five percent. You can see the leader board there. The latest from the campaign trail, Senator Rubio is not backing down from his critics who are slamming his performance at this weekend's debate in New Hampshire. It was the final showdown before voters go to the polls and there was an epic moment between Senator Rubio and Governor Christie that drove the political writers nuts. Watch.  

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MARCO RUBIO, R-FLA., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Let's just start once and for all with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing.  He knows exactly what he's doing. Barack Obama is undertaking a systemic effort to change this country to make America more like the rest of the world. When I'm President of the United States, we are going to re-embrace all the things that made America the greatest nation in the world and we are going to leave our children what they deserve.  

GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE, R-N.J., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You have not been involved in a consequential decision where you had to be held accountable.  You just simply haven't.

RUBIO: I think the experience is not just what you did, but how it worked out. Under Chris Christie's governorship of New Jersey, they've been downgraded nine times in their credit rating. I would add this, let's dispel with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing.  He knows exactly what he's doing. He is trying to change this country. He wants America to become more like the rest of the world.  

CHRISTIE: You see everybody, I want the people at home to think about this, that's what Washington, D.C., does. The drive-by shot at the beginning with incorrect and incomplete information and then the memorized 25-second speech, that is exactly what his advisers gave him.

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

RUBIO: Christie, your state got hit by a massive snowstorm, two weeks ago, you didn't even want to go back. They had to shame you into going back.  And then you stayed there for 36 hours and then you left and came back to campaign. Those are the facts. Here's the bottom-line, this notion that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing is just not --

CHRISTIE: There it is. There it is. The memorized 25-second speech.

RUBIO: That's the --

CHRISTIE: There it is, everybody.

RUBIO: That's why this campaign is so important.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: And then Senator Rubio went back to that same line again. Senator Rubio standing by his debate performance, though, even despite the fact that some are mocking him for repeating one rehearsed line about President Obama at least four times over the course of the night. Here's Senator Rubio.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RUBIO: And let's just start once and for all with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing. He knows exactly what he's doing.  Barack Obama is undertaking a systematic effort to change this country. To make America more like the rest of the world. Let's dispel with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing. He knows exactly what he's doing. He is trying to change this country. He wants America to become more like the rest of the world. Here's the bottom-line. This notion that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing is just not true --

CHRISTIE: There it is. There it is. The memorized 25-second speech.  

RUBIO: Well, that's the reason --

CHRISTIE: There it is everybody.

RUBIO: I think anyone who believes that Barack Obama isn't doing what he's doing on purpose doesn't understand what we're dealing with here. OK?  This is a president -- this is a president who's trying to change this country.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: And here was some of the media reaction. The Union Leader, New Hampshire's paper of record writing, "Christie rocks Rubio at final debate." The Washington, D.C.-based website Politico writing, "Rubio crashed and burned." And the conservative website The Daily Caller writing "Rubio's debate malfunction undermines his appeal."

Here now, Senator Marco Rubio.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: So you heard some of those reviews talking about how this was a malfunction, others said it was an unmasking. What's your reaction when you --

RUBIO: Yes. That's people that cover politics on a daily basis. I'm not looking to impress them. I'm looking to impress voters. I can tell you that we raised more money online that debate than any other debate we had.

KELLY: Uh-hm.

RUBIO: I can tell you our crowds have grown every day here in Iowa afterwards. And at the end of the day, I'm going to continue to say what I said that night. I honestly and deeply believe that Barack Obama --

KELLY: It wasn't the message. It was the repetition of the message.  

RUBIO: No, I get it, but that's the only way I know how to describe it.  Well, but look, that was a two-hour debate and we were asked questions on all sorts of things, and answers were different for all of them. This is what I deeply believe. I don't know no other way to describe it other than the fact that this president is undertaking a systemic effort to redefine the role of government in our country and the role of America and the world. He's literary trying to change America. And if Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton wins, it's going to become permanent. That's what this campaign is a lot about for me.

KELLY: Uh-hm.

RUBIO: And I'm going to continue to say that because I believe that passionately.  

KELLY: Let me ask you about your process. I mean, is there a system by which you memorize answers? I mean, is that how you do it or is it --

RUBIO: I know what I believe.  

KELLY: Is it repeated over and over so much on the campaign trail becomes --

RUBIO: It could be part of that. I mean, obviously when you said something because you've been answering the same questions over and over again from different people over time, but in the end it's what I believe.  Every word I say in my campaign are things that I believe, and so, you know, this is our eighth debate, our seventh debate, whichever one it was.  And I feel good about every single one of them at least among voters. And so, we're going to continue to say this. It's a core part of our message.

KELLY: Was there any pause -- I'm going to move on. Was there any pause in your mind when Christie was hitting you for repeating the same line about doing it again? Because that is the moment he said what he said, and there it is.  

RUBIO: Yes. But see, he went in there trying to start a fight with people. I don't think this campaign should be about Republicans beating each other up. There are differences between us, we can talk about those.  But for me, and that's what I try to do and continue to try to do. There's a difference between us, we'll address it. But let's move back to the center issue in this campaign and that is what Barack Obama's doing to America, what will continue to happen if Hillary or Bernie win. You know, I believe the Democrats love these kinds of debates. They would love to see us have a bloody, nasty process and primary to make it easier for Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders to win.  

KELLY: The hate point seemed to be that we, the American people, shouldn't thrust you because there isn't substance there, there is just memorized lines.  

RUBIO: Yes, but that's absurd. I mean, I was asked questions about Syria, I was asked questions about the -- you know, my pro-life position. All these -- we were asked questions all about sorts of things. We answered those questions. We answer those questions all the time in the campaign trail and beyond.  

KELLY: They are all getting exciting behind us.  

RUBIO: Yes, that's good.  

KELLY: All kinds of drama out on the campaign trail.  

RUBIO: It's part of the fun.  

KELLY: And you can see the lovers are much greater than the haters.  

RUBIO: Yes. But at the end, you know, I think if you think about it, when people want to brag about their experience, you have to look about their record and the results they've gotten. Christie is a governor that's got his state downgraded nine times in seven years. That's part of his record he'll have to answer for. But in the end, my campaign has never been about beating up on the other Republicans because in the end we got to bring this party together if we want to win this election and I will.  

KELLY: Let me just preview a couple of issues for you, like off-point issues.

RUBIO: Yes.

KELLY: Right? So, see your point, you can talk about anything --

RUBIO: Right. Absolutely.  

KELLY: Can we do a few rapid fire?

RUBIO: Yes.

KELLY: Vaccines.

RUBIO: Yes.

KELLY: Where do you stand on --

RUBIO: I think all children should be vaccinated.  

KELLY: Do you think they cause autism?

RUBIO: No, they do not. And look, at the end of the day, there are kids that cannot be vaccinated because they are means of -- they had an issue and illness that don't allow vaccines but kids should be vaccinated.  

KELLY: Let's do another one. Native American Halloween costumes, should they be banned? Should college campuses be telling --

RUBIO: I don't know about that. I mean, obviously there's free speech in America is real. People are allowed to be offensive in this country. It's legal to be offensive. I think it's more of a societal issue. If something offends someone you shouldn't unnecessarily do it, but that's not a law, that's the way society governs this stuff.

KELLY: To that point, Jeb Bush and his mother, Barbara gave an interview on Friday about Donald Trump saying, there's a difference between being politically incorrect and being vulgar, and objected to some of swear words he was using in-front of rooms full of people including children. Your thoughts on it?

RUBIO: Yes. I agree. Look, I don't think -- I think it's important to have dignity in the office of the presidency. I give Donald a lot of credit. He has really brought attention to a lot of issues that in this country people are upset about. But I think we're capable of doing that without doing it in a way that, for example, will embarrass you if your kids did it.  

KELLY: Uh-hm. Last question. You were out on the campaign trail and literally brought a young woman to tears, she was so excited. We can see the enthusiasm for you in this room as well. As we sit here on the eve of New Hampshire with, you know, the momentum behind you of the past week, with a bit of a debate stumble, what is winning for you tomorrow night?

RUBIO: Well, it's interesting, we've never seen a campaign like this. I mean, you have three candidates in this race that basically their entire campaign has been in one state. Donald Trump has consistently led the polls here since the middle of June. And Ted was the winner in Iowa. So, who knows? It's a very unusual dynamic. I can say that we want to get as many delegates as we can out of New Hampshire because we think this is going to be a long process here with so many people running. We got seven delegates out of Iowa, Ted came in first, he got eight. So, he's only delegate ahead of us despite that finish. We want to get as many as we can out of New Hampshire, do as well as we can, and move on to South Carolina which we feel very strong about our campaign there.  

KELLY: It's not about placement, it's about delegates.  

RUBIO: Ultimately it will be in this one because if you look at this race, and how long I think it's going to take with so many competitive people in the race, I think that it's going to be a big factor here. We're going to be the nominee. I just don't know if it's going to be in May or March.  But it could take a while.  

KELLY: Thank you.

RUBIO: Thank you.

KELLY: It's good to see you.

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: Well, as you just saw, Governor Chris Christie managed to score some points in Saturday's debate by attacking Senator Rubio. As someone whose campaign is built on memorized lines, and heavily rehearsed sound bites. But today Governor Christie's critics pointed out that the New Jersey Governor like a lot of the candidates sometimes also repeats himself. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHRISTIE: This is the difference between being a governor and being in the legislature. You have to be responsible and accountable. This is the difference between being a governor and being a senator. See, when you're a senator, what you get to do is just talk and talk and talk. When you're a governor, you're held accountable for everything you do.

There's a difference between being a governor and being someone who has never had to be responsible for any of those decisions. This is the difference between being a governor who actually has to be responsible for problems. When you're a governor, you have to take responsibility.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: Joining us now, Republican presidential candidate and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. Governor, good to see you.  

CHRISTIE: Hi, good to be here, Megyn.  

KELLY: All right. So, what do you make of that? You saying the same lines over and over on the campaign trail.  

CHRISTIE: It's really interesting to try to make that comparison, but I didn't say them four times in a row in one debate in a way that was completely nonresponsive to the question like I was drowning and grabbing for a life preserver. So, yes, it's a good try by the Rubio campaign but not quite.  

KELLY: Well, they didn't do it. I mean, your critics are raising the point and a lot of people --  

CHRISTIE: The Rubio campaign --

KELLY: A lot of candidate --

CHRISTIE: It was the Rubio campaign that did it, Megyn.

KELLY: We did have context --

CHRISTIE: And they pushed it out to other media sources.  

KELLY: No, for the record, we did not have contact --

CHRISTIE: -- But other media sources.  

KELLY: OK. Just to make it clear --

CHRISTIE: Yes, of course.  

KELLY: That was our idea. I don't know whether they did it, too. Because we hear a lot of similarities between the candidates, stump speeches. And this is what his defenders say, like, you guys you can't come up a new bit every time you go and speak. You can't come up with a new bit on every point. This is his bit when he gets attacked on whether a senator -- first-term senator is the one we should elect as president.  

CHRISTIE: It was nonresponsive to the question. And so, listen, Megyn, he can argue all he wants, but there is not a person watching that debate the other night unless they were in Marco Rubio's hip pocket who thought that that was responsive and a good thing. And by the way, it just shows he's not ready. He's not ready to be president of the United States.  

KELLY: Let me challenge you on the non-responsiveness. I mean, it was a shocking moment because he did keep repeating it over and over.  

CHRISTIE: Yes.  

KELLY: But if you take aside sort of the moment of the debate, how is it not responsive? Because he was trying to defend why it's OK to elect a first-term senator, notwithstanding what we've seen with Barack Obama. His point is Barack Obama wasn't too inexperienced for the job, Barack Obama has done everything he's done that's controversial intentionally. That's how he's trying to rebut the argument that a first-term senator is not the right one.  

CHRISTIE: Nobody buys it, sorry, good try. Nobody buys it.  

KELLY: Well, that's a different argue from --

CHRISTIE: No, nobody buys it. It's responsive. Nobody buys that that's responsive and he got caught doing exactly what I was saying he's been doing for the whole campaign.  

KELLY: Which reveals what us to us?

CHRISTIE: He has no depth and no substance. That's what. He repeats canned lines over and over and over again.

KELLY: OK. But --

CHRISTIE: And he does it all the time. He does it in his town hall meetings. He does it in TV interviews.  

KELLY: Do you ever do that?

CHRISTIE: Listen, do I say some things the same time? Yes. But you go to my town hall meetings, I almost never open the same way, I almost never close the same way, my answers are different. Absolutely.  

KELLY: How about the people who say it's message discipline?

CHRISTIE: How about the people who say it's robotic? I don't know.  Listen, if you like Marco Rubio, then you like that. But I tell you this, it's not way it works when you're sitting in a big chair. You can't repeat the same thing over and over again. Going to do that sitting across from Vladimir Putin?

KELLY: Uh-hm.

CHRISTIE: There's not substance there, Megyn. And that's what it show.  It's what everyone suspected about Senator Rubio. He's a nice guy, he has got a lot of talent. He's too young. He's too inexperienced and he has served not one day in a position of management in his entire life. And now we want him to manage the largest most complex government in the history of this world. I quite frankly don't think that qualifies him and what it showed the other night though, much more importantly than that, is that I am ready because I did not get shaken.  

KELLY: Let me ask you about that.

CHRISTIE: By the way, listen, he was coming right back at me.  

KELLY: I'm going to give you the floor.  

CHRISTIE: He was coming right back at me. And I didn't repeat the same things over and over again.  

KELLY: Everyone remembers four years ago when there were Republicans begging you to run, and you said I'm not ready, and I'll know when I'm ready.

CHRISTIE: Right.

KELLY: Is that why this has particular resonance for you, that do you feel like he's you four years ago, like somebody who just isn't ready for the job but is putting himself out there?

CHRISTIE: No, has nothing to do with me. About him not being ready. I make my own decision. Everyone has to make their own decision when they think they're ready then you're judged and he's being judged about whether he's ready or not and he's not ready.  

KELLY: And to those voters in New Hampshire who say, I love Chris Christie, but he's got no chance, and I don't want to vote for somebody with no chance.  

CHRISTIE: That is simply not true. Our internal polls show something very different than what you showed out here. Very different. And I think you're going to be very surprised tomorrow night. The momentum is in our direction. It's been that way since the debate ended on Saturday night.  Senator Rubio is dropping like a rock and we are rising.  

KELLY: You're saying your internal polls show that?

CHRISTIE: Yes, ma'am.  

KELLY: Do you have any prediction before I let you go?

CHRISTIE: No. I'm going to do a lot better than what we showed you on the screen. I guarantee you that.  

KELLY: Again, that was not, you know?

CHRISTIE: Well, I suggest (INAUDIBLE) your poll, but you showed it on the screen. You asked me for prediction. I'm going to do a lot better than that.

KELLY: All right.

CHRISTIE: A lot better. And then, you know? Then buy me a beer or something.

KELLY: What?

CHRISTIE: Come on!

KELLY: I don't know what you've heard about me.

CHRISTIE: I don't know what I've heard about you --

KELLY: I'm a teetotaler.

CHRISTIE: All right. Then buy me a cup of tea.  

(LAUGHTER)

KELLY: Milkshakes.  

CHRISTIE: All right. We'll go to Blake's.  

KELLY: Governor, great to see you.  

CHRISTIE: Thank you. Good to see you, Megyn.  

KELLY: Well, we are less than three hours away now from the first votes in New Hampshire. He could lock it up tonight. Seven votes.

And right now, our chief political correspondent campaign Carl Cameron is en route to Dixville Notch, the tiny community that will vote first. Carl?

CHRISTIE: Drive safely, Carl.  

CARL CAMERON, FOX NEWS CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Megyn. Hi, Governor. Welcome to Twin Mountain on the north side of the White Mountain National Forest on route three where we pulled over just to make sure that the technology would work. We just went by a sign that said, watch out for moose, quote, "Hundreds of Collisions." We still have about an hour or so to go before we get to Dixville Notch, home of the first of the first. In the past there's been a population who work at the Balsams Hotel there of a population vote of about 30 to 40 people but the facility's been going through some renovations and the vote will be tremendously representative of the demography of New Hampshire and the world with a total of perhaps less than ten voters tonight but they are the first of the first.

And this year, in addition to Dixville Notch there's always been heart's location with usually a slightly larger population at a new town called Milfied which is in used in New Hampshire law that says, if everybody who wants to vote can vote at midnight, you can open the polls and close them as soon as they vote. Donald Trump has not made a visit here, in fact, almost none of the candidates have made a visit here whereas in the past they did. Trump may be leading in the polls. Dixville isn't necessarily indicative but it can only be as few as two or three votes to actually win it, Megyn, and we will have those results live for you at midnight.  

KELLY: Exciting. Looking forward to seeing you then, Carl. Thank you.

Well, if you look at the average of all the New Hampshire polls, Governor John Kasich is now third. And he will join us next with his plans for the road ahead and his predictions.  

Plus, we're seeing an aggressive new look from Governor Jeb -- Governor Jeb Trump. No, that's not right. That's what the prompter says. Governor Jeb Bush as he takes on Donald Trump.

Marc Thiessen, Dana Perino and Steve Hays are here on why Governor Bush is now the one making it personal.  

Plus in the past 72 hours we've seen a pair of feminist icons scolding young American women for supporting Bernie Sanders. Wait until you see the response to that just ahead.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FORMER PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON: The only one funny thing you need to know about this e-mail, she posted it under a pseudonym because she and other people who have gone online to defend Hillary and explain, just explain why they supported her, have been subject to vicious trolling. And attacks that are literally too profane, often, not to mention sexist, to repeat.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KELLY: It is now just hours until voting begins in the Granite State, and we're seeing some serious new attacks on Ohio Governor John Kasich. The man now sitting in third place in the Real Clear Politics average of all polls in New Hampshire. With that in mind, the Bush team today went out with this message. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you regret your vote for the assault weapons ban in 94?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, going back and regretting. I voted for an assault weapons ban.

JEB BUSH, R-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: When you're governor for eight years, you got a record and here's mine. I earned an a-plus rating from the NRA, Florida's pro-gun laws have been a model for other states.  

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You work to expand Medicaid, you worked for President Obama.  

CHRIS WALLACE, HOST, "FOX NEWS SUNDAY": To give President Obama bipartisan cover on ObamaCare, your answer.  

BUSH: Yes, one governor expanded Medicaid, the other did, too. Well, I think that was wrong.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: Joining me now, Republican presidential candidate, and Ohio Governor John Kasich. And there's a reason they're going after you, Governor, and that's because at least in the latest Monmouth and ARG polls, you're in second place here in New Hampshire which would be a remarkable finish for you in this state, and so obviously they're gunning for you.  But are they on to something because those are issues that --

GOV. JOHN KASICH (R-OH), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Megyn, you know, look --

KELLY: -- that upset the Republican base in some circumstances.  

KASICH: I'm really disappointed in Jeb. It's, look, I mean, he's taken the very low road to the highest office in the land, and he's been negative all along, but that's okay. You know, as Arnold Schwarzenegger told me when I was running for governor the first time, love the beatings. And we've been positive really this -- we've been positive this whole time and Megyn, you couldn't believe what happened just about 45 minutes ago.

We had hundreds of people standing in a snowstorm with the klieg lights in front of this old iconic country store and people are fired up and our ground game is like nothing that the people have seen and, well, Gordon Humphrey says the best ground game we've seen in 40 years. So, look, I'm going to continue to be positive. I've done 106 town hall meetings. Our television has been good. And, you know, I'm really sanguine. I'm in real hit good mood about what's going to happen tomorrow.

KELLY: Sanguine. Nice use of sanguine. Let me ask you about immigration.  Because that's an issue we hear about a lot with you. Because at that one debate when you got up there and you said, what are we going to do, think about the children. You know, Trump's plan, this plan by others have them all yanked out, illegal immigrants, it's not realistic, and a lot of Republicans groaned at that saying, he's too weak on immigration.

KASICH: Well, I don't think I'm weak. I've done, like I say, I've been all over the country and when you spend -- when you do 106 town halls with people here and so many other kind of meetings, Megyn, look, what's practical, finish the border, don't let anybody come in that's not permitted. If they come in, you have to send them right back. Have a guest worker program. And for the 11-and-a-half million that are here, if they'd not violated the law since they've been here, give them a path to legalization, not to citizenship and let's get this issue behind us. And I believe that's the -- the right approach. I think the American people, my guess is, I don't want to speak for the American people, but I think they think it's reasonable, and I think he could pass it through the Congress.  So, let's just get it done. I'd like to get it done in the first 100 days.  

KELLY: Governor Christie was here moments ago suggesting he thought there was a pivotal moment between himself and Senator Rubio at the debate and also suggesting that their internal polling is showing bad news for Senator Rubio and good news for Governor Christie. You want to share anything about what you're seeing on the state of the race right now?

KASICH: Well, we just feel good, Megyn. I mean, when you take a look at what we've done here and we take a look at the intensity and passion of our ground game, because you know at the end in a place like New Hampshire, and I've been telling you this really for a long time, it's touching voters. I just called a guy today who tomorrow is going to make his 10,000th phone call. I mean, it's ridiculous. People have walked in the rain, they walk in the snow and that's how you win elections. You win it with that ground game. Particularly in a state of this size.

So, in terms of predicting what's going to happen, I'm not going to do that, but I've got a bus outside that I'm ready to send to South Carolina because we'll be going there tomorrow night because I think we're going to have an excellent result. And I don't say it, you know, sort of -- I don't want to brag. I've been humbled with what's happened up here, and I think we're going to do extremely well and the thank you goes to the people of New Hampshire.

KELLY: Governor, great to see you.

KASICH: Hey, I've been to Dixville Notch, by the way, and the other thing you should know is --

KELLY: You can still get their vote.

KASICH: I've called -- I've called them all again. So we'll see, Megyn.  Thank you. God bless.  

KELLY: All right. Great to see you. All the best. You, too.  

Well, even before the weekend debate began, there was one awkward moment that left ABC News facing some questions. Howie Kurtz is here on that.  

Plus, the never-ending fight between Ted Cruz and CNN.  

Also, the fight between Trump and Bush has reached new levels of ugly. And Marc Thiessen, Dana Perino, and Steve Hayes are here next on how it could play out in tomorrow's vote.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KELLY: Breaking tonight, we are seeing a new side of Governor Jeb Bush as he ramps up his attack against Donald Trump. And this weekend, it got personal.

First, Governor Bush and Mr. Trump at the New Hampshire debate in a fierce back and forth over the issue of eminent domain. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JEB BUSH, 2016 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: How tough is it .

DONALD TRUMP, 2016 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: A lot of times .

BUSH: . to take away the property from an elderly woman.

TRUMP: . let me talk -- let me talk, quiet.

BUSH: How tough is this.

TRUMP: A lot of times -- a lot of times.

(BACKGROUND NOISE - CROWD)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: And then yesterday Governor Bush turned it up a notch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BUSH: Here's a sign of real weakness. When you call John McCain or Leo Thorsness or anybody else that was a POW, who served this country in a way that should be admired, American heroes, calling them losers, Donald Trump, you're the loser.

(APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: Joining me now, Steve Hayes, who's a Fox News contributor and senior writer of The Weekly Standard. Dana Perino is co-host of "The Five" and former Bush White House press secretary and Marc Thiessen is a Fox News contributor and former chief speechwriter for President George W. Bush. Good to see you all.

UNIDENTIFIED: Good to see you, Megyn.

KELLY: So, a fiery Jeb, and I don't, you know, I haven't seen a lot of standing ovations for Jeb but he's certainly got it with that attack effective?

STEPHEN HAYES, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Yeah, I thought it was an effective moment for Jeb. In that debate, clearly, he won the exchange between he and Donald Trump over the issue of eminent domain. Jeb made the right distinctions between private and public views.

KELLY: Trump said, "I walked away." He - Jeb said, "You -- you were trying to go after .

HAYES: Yeah, that was Trump.

KELLY: . this old lady and take her property for your limousine parking lot." Trump said, "I walked away from that deal." And Jeb said, "Because you lost the lawsuit."

HAYES: Right. Exactly. It wasn't exactly right what -- what Trump had said. But I think that was a good moment for Jeb, and I think he deserves credit for continuing to point out the flaws in Donald Trump's candidacy. I mean, both -- whether you're talking about, you know, his character as -- as Bush was saying there, or his policy issues.

KELLY: I want to show you a moment that happened just moments ago on the campaign trail where Trump was at a rally and one of the women in the crowd said a naughty word that is another word for cat. And here's what happened.

(LAUGHTER)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: They asked Ted Cruz serious questions. "Well what do you think of waterboarding, is it OK?" And honestly I thought he'd say, "Absolutely," and he didn't. He said, well, it's -- you know, he's concerned about the answer because some people -- she just said a terrible thing. You know what she said? Shout it out because I don't want to (BEEP).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wanted her (ph).

TRUMP: OK. You're not allowed to say -- and I never expect to hear that from you, again. She said -- I never expect to hear that from you, again. She said he's a (BEEP). That's terrible. Terrible.

(BACKGROUND NOISE -- CROWD)

(END VIDEO CLIP)  KELLY: So, he is not taking Barbara bush's message when it comes to vulgarity in this race.

(LAUGHTER)

DANA PERINO, CO-HOST, "THE FIVE": No. And the other thing is, is that in the clip that you showed where Jeb Bush got the standing ovation.

KELLY: Yes.

PERINO: . it was when he was talking about -- he was talking to a room full of POW -- former POWs, veterans, people in the military, the people that support defense, and he was referring back to when Donald Trump was talking about John McCain and said, "I don't like losers, losers only get captured."

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: But were not captured.

PERINO: So, the direct link -- and so the direct link is obvious then that he was saying John McCain is a loser because he got captured. What he'll do on this as well is say, "I didn't say that Ted Cruz was a cat, I said .

(LAUGHTER)

. I was .

HAYES: Salami (ph).

(LAUGHTER)

PERINO: . I think we're repeating .

(LAUGHTER)

HAYES: Salami (ph)?

PERINO: . what the woman said about him being a cat.

KELLY: Yes. Marc, go ahead, quickly.

MARC THIESSEN, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: No. It's just - it's interesting, though, however, that Jeb Bush is the candidate who said, "Donald Trump, you can't insult your way to the presidency."

KELLY: Yeah .

THIESSEN: And today .

KELLY: . if you can't beat them, join them.

THIESSEN: . but today he said, Donald trump is a loser, a liar and a whiner. So that -- you were talking about .

(LAUGHTER)

PERINO: A champion (ph).

THIESSEN: . you're talking about message discipline, that's message incoherence.

KELLY: Let's -- let's switch back to what happened at the top of the show here tonight with Governor Christie and Governor Rubio. First of all, I haven't heard your thoughts on what happened at that debate and then your thoughts on what the dynamic at the top of the show tonight.

HAYES: Yeah, look -- I mean, I'd say, it was clearly a bad moment for Marco Rubio. He went back to this -- this canned answer and he repeated it in the face of these attacks on this subject from Chris Christie.

KELLY: It was a bad moment. How bad was it?

HAYES: Well, I think it was a bad moment. I mean, it was -- it wasn't good. He looked like he was rehearsing what he had said like he had it in his mind. I think what he was trying to do was avoid a fight with a candidate who was polling at 4 or 5 percent, with the idea that it doesn't do me much good to get into a big brawl with Chris Christie. I think, you know what really has been missed in much of the commentary about this over the last couple days is the extent to which he recovered. I mean, I think that second half of the debate, I went back .

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: That's what he said to me.

HAYES: So, Marc, I went back and re-read the transcript of the second half of the debate, he had some terrific exchanges, some very good substantive answers, but by the time that first commercial break came, everybody had made up their mind about what the story was.

KELLY: He -- he has entirely too much time on his hands.

(LAUGHTER)

Your thoughts on it because I mean, it was a forensic deconstruction by Christie at the debate. I mean, you could see the former federal prosecutor doing what prosecutors do. But -- your thoughts on how he was there and how he was here.

PERINO: So, much about politics is about timing and how would you in a crowded field like that, how could you do -- have a moment in a debate where you could have a headline? And Chris Christie figured it out and -- now the first thing I thought was that in two debates ago I thought if Governor Christie says one more time what it takes to be a governor than a senator.

So, I mean, everybody has done it, but, yes, that was an important moment for Christie. If -- I don't think it was fatal for Marco Rubio, and I have to say, I think Christie did himself a disservice with his tone and demeanor in the aftermath of it. Instead of being a gracious winner, he just wants to, like, rub it in and pound -- pound Marco Rubio's head into it. In the meantime, your interview with Marco Rubio, he is surrounded by fans. Now, I know Chris Christie couldn't have fans here, but I mean, I just think that it showed that it's not going to be fatal for Marco Rubio, but it certainly dinged him a bit.

KELLY: Go ahead, Marc.

THIESSEN: Well, it's just interesting that, you know, the reason -- Marco Rubio should have taken a different -- use -- and state -- made the same point with different language three times (ph).

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: Yeah. Different words.

PERINO: There are a lot of words.

THIESSEN: Different words.

KELLY: As a speechwriter, you know.

HAYES: But -- but .

THIESSEN: Absolutely. But I mean, you know, the reality is, he was making a valid point which is central to his campaign. Chris Christie wants to make this about experience because he's a governor and that plays to his strengths. Marco Rubio's point which is absolutely correct which is that Barack Obama's problem isn't inexperience. It's the wrong world view.

KELLY: But it -- but -- were you not disturbed by that Rubio moment at the debate?

THIESSEN: Absolutely.

KELLY: It seemed like he just got .

THIESSEN: Absolutely.

KELLY: . stuck and couldn't .

THIESSEN: Yeah.

KELLY: . get off the same words. It was jarring.

THIESSEN: Absolutely -- absolutely. Usually when you're a speechwriter and you're working for a candidate, you come up with three or four ways to say the same -- same thing .

KELLY: Right.

(CROSSTALK)

THIESSEN: . in a different way.

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: It's guidelines .

PERINO: Right, right.

KELLY: . nothing concrete.

THIESSEN: But also keep in mind, Chris Christie did the exact same thing in that debate. When he was asked about drug addiction in New Hampshire, he gave -- he went off and then said, "I'm pro-life for the whole life of the person and that 16-year-old girl who's on the -- on the floor in a county lockup," he said the exact same thing three months ago in a speech and up here .

KELLY: We have that teed up but don't have time to play it, but you're right.

THIESSEN: Yes.

KELLY: He has said that. They've all (ph) -- they've all (ph).

THIESSEN: It's called measure (ph).

PERINO: And that was .

(CROSSTALK)

HAYES: That's what they do -- that's something they do.

THIESSEN: But it wasn't their .

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: It was just jarring to see it over and over .

HAYES (?): It was.

KELLY: . when being pressed on the fact that you are so repetitive of -- in -- in a way that sounds canned and robotic which was, I thought, what was so surprising and actually kind of disturbing to watch. Great to see you all.

HAYES: Thanks, Megyn.

More tomorrow.

In the final hours before New Hampshire, a trio of big-time Clinton supporters laying into Bernie Sanders' supporters suggesting women are turncoats if they back him. James Rosen is here with the details and then Nomiki Konst and Mark Hannah are here on the fallout. And Howie Kurtz is next on Beyonce's Super Bowl Show, whether it was an attack on cops and how the angry response is getting louder.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KELLY: Breaking tonight, a new battle of the sexes in the Democratic race for the White house as Hillary Clinton supporters open up a fresh line of attack against Bernie Sanders and his supporters suggesting that women have an obligation to support Mrs. Clinton. Feminist, Gloria Steinem, even going so far as to argue young girls are only following Bernie Sanders because they want to meet boys.

Chief Washington correspondent, James Rosen reports from our D.C. Bureau. James?

JAMES ROSEN, FOX NEWS CHIEF WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Megyn, good evening. Gloria Steinem kind of sort of apologized on Facebook yesterday for comments which she said had been misinterpreted.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MADELEINE ALBRIGHT, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: And when you're young, you're thinking, you know, where are the boys, the boys are with Bernie, or, you know .

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh. Now, if I said that .

(LAUGHTER)

ALBRIGHT: No. No. You can say .

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah. That's for Bernie because that's where the boys are .

ALBRIGHT: No, no. But it's .

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is .

ALBRIGHT: . not .

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: . you'd swat me. Come on.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROSEN: It was an extraordinary moment. The founder of "Ms. Magazine" denounced by women whose career she help make possible. Hilary Hanson of the Huffington Post Calling Steinem remarks alarmingly sexist. Juana Summers of Mashable's calling them profoundly sexist and condescending. Stumping for Hillary Clinton in Concord, New Hampshire. On Saturday, Madeleine Albright, the first female secretary of state who rebuked younger women for even thinking of backing Bernie Sanders.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ALBRIGHT: And just remember, there's a special place in hell for women who don't help each other.

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

ALBRIGHT: Yes.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROSEN: Yet, in Milford on Sunday, former President Clinton amping (ph) up his attacks on Sanders, complained about sexist harassment of his wife's supporters online.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL CLINTON, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: She and other people who have gone online to defend Hillary and explain, just explain why they supported her, have been subject to vicious trolling, and attacks that are literally too profane often, not to mention sexist, to repeat.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROSEN: And, of course, Donald Trump has made it all too clear he is willing to go after Bill and Hillary Clinton for their past relationships with various women. Megyn?

KELLY: James, thank you.

Joining me now with more, Nomiki Konst who is the founder and executive director of the Accountability Project. Mark Hannah who served as a campaign aide for the Obama and Kerry presidential campaigns.

MARK HANNAH, FORMER OBAMA AND KERRY CAMPAIGN AIDE: Hi, Megyn.

KELLY: Nomiki, good to you. I'll start with you first. How about Gloria Steinem? I mean, Bill Martin (ph) nailed it. If he had said that, we'd all be coming down on him.

NOMIKI KONST, FOUNDER AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE ACCOUNTABILITY PROJECT: Nobody should have said that. Nobody. She is -- listen, I love Gloria Steinem. I just cried my way through her latest book. So, I was deeply disappointed to hear this. I think that she's representative of a -- of a class of feminists who are sort of out of touch with our generation.

You know, we have different feminist's issues that we're fighting. We've -- our generation has re-branded feminism, but like bringing it back to the point about Bernie sanders, you know, this is a man who had 100 percent rating from NARAL (ph) and Planned Parenthood. We are we're by no means endorsing a man who's out of touch with women. We're voting for Bernie Sanders because he's attacking the root cause .

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: See -- but this is the kind of challenge .

(CROSSTALK)

KONST: . a lot of these challenges.

KELLY: Let me challenge you on that. This -- I was trying to make this point last night on Stephen Colbert. We have a clip coming up later. That - - that -- this is where the -- you tell me whether I'm wrong. This is where the feminist movement goes wrong. Why does -- why does pro-choice or antiabortion, whatever, why does that have to be part of the feminist platform?

You know how alienating that is? Half of the women disagree. Half of the women in this country are pro-life, half are pro-choice. If you make that part of the platform, you -- you're doing what Gloria is doing, alienating half of the American population, the female population.

KONST: Well, to clarify, you know, we're talking about Democratic candidates here. So, when you look at the feminist Democratic candidates and feminist Democratic establishment, that is the crux issue there. I mean, you have to be a pro-choice woman because that's part of our platform. So, you know, what else is part of our platform? Wall Street Reform, fighting for criminal justice reform, and those are things Hillary Clinton has not always been on our side about and Bernie Sanders has. He might be a man and sure, we'd love to have a woman who is a progressive running, but she is -- she is by far .

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: And with Mark Hannah .

HANNAH: Yeah.

KELLY: . and apparently a few years ago, Gloria Steinem said Bernie Sanders is an honorary woman and talked about him as a feminist. But now that he's running against Hillary, I guess he's just a man.

HANNAH: I have no -- I have no qualms with Bernie. I think he knows and -- and supports women's issues, but you said something on your Colbert interview, Megyn, that I thought was brilliant. You said, look, something everybody can agree with is that women should not have to choose between work and -- and family. And that's something that all the women watching last night understand more than men.

Hillary Clinton understands women's issues. She's been fighting for them for 50 years. She understands them on an innate level, on a visceral human level that in a way that Bernie Sanders will never be able to understand. And so I think it's justifiable that Ms. Steinem and Madeleine Albright are -- are outraged that -- that the young women -- young millennial women, like Nomiki, are kind of taking for granted the symbolic and substantive victory this would be for women if Hillary Clinton became the next presidency of the United States.

KELLY: Go ahead, Nomiki.

HANNAH: And -- and let's just say, though -- also, if -- if Bernie Sanders is the candidate, he has about as much chance winning the general election as Donald Trump has .

KONST: That's not true. That's not true.

HANNAH: . is asking you, Megyn, to be his fourth wife.

KELLY: I'm not going to attest (ph) that one.

HANNAH: My point is Bernie .

KELLY: Go ahead Nomiki.

HANNAH: . has no shot. No shot.

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: We can hear .

(CROSSTALK)

KONST: I -- I don't agree with that.

HANNAH: That's going to be disastrous for women when the Supreme Court nominee .

KONST: He'll .

HANNAH: . is picked by Ted Cruz.

KELLY: All right. Go ahead. Let Nomiki has lesson (ph).

(CROSSTALK)

KONST: No, let's be fair here. I mean, Hillary Clinton when she's running I don't think the turnout is going to be very high, and I think the Democrats need turnout. And when an entire generation of our party is being disenfranchised and -- and joining the independent movement, you know, that's a problem. We've got to start thinking about the future of our party. Maybe we should find more women to run for president except for one. Maybe there's a lot of senators that are perfectly qualified that probably could have won -- run.

KELLY: I want to continue this discussion. There's more -- there's more to talk about, but we can't tonight because we have another guest. It's great to see you both.

KONST: Thank you so much, Megyn.

HANNAH: Bye, Megyn.

KELLY: Also tonight, the campaign trail conspiracy that will not go away. The feud between Ted Cruz and CNN over who was to blame for a report on Dr. Ben Carson that has led to accusations of stealing votes and it's all now escalating again. Howie Kurtz is next on why this isn't going away and what it could mean for the campaign.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KELLY: For the feud between CNN and Senator Ted Cruz is ramping up, again. Today marks exactly one week since the bickering began over who's to blame for the Cruz campaign suggestion during the Iowa Caucuses that Dr. Ben Carson was dropping out. Just this weekend, Senator Cruz defended the campaign, again.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. TED CRUZ, R-TEXAS, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: On Monday night about 6:30 p.m., CNN reported that Ben was not going from Iowa to New Hampshire or South Carolina rather he was, quote, "Taking a break from campaigning." CNN reported on that. They didn't correct that story until 9:15 that night. When this transpired, I apologized to him then and I do so now.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: CNN issued a statement after the debate suggesting Senator Cruz's remarks, were quote, "Categorically false." And on it goes. Howard Kurtz, the host of Fox News' MediaBuzz Program. All right. Howie, so does it boil down to the CNN sent out a corrective tweet -- a tweet moments later, saying, "Oh, he's still staying in the race," but they didn't report it on the air I guess until a significant time after or at least that's Cruz's defense.

HOWARD KURTZ, HOST, "MEDIABUZZ": CNN didn't really have to correct anything. The initial report said in a very highly unusual move Ben Carson was taking three of the eight days between Iowa and New Hampshire to go off the trail.

KELLY: Which led us all to say, "Oh, what's happened .

KURTZ: Yes.

KELLY: . with Carson?

KURTZ: But CNN didn't say dropping out, suspending. But the voicemails which I've - who confirmed they're authentic talked about suspending the campaign. Look, Ted Cruz has apologized to Ben Carson. He should just move on rather than picking this fight with CNN.

(CROSSTALK)

KELLY: Well, he was asked about it at the debate.

KURTZ: Yes, no. He stands (ph).

KELLY: I mean, he moved on -- being asked about the debate.

KURTZ: . it was wrong. My staff (ph) shouldn't have done this.

KELLY: He said that.

KURTZ: But then he blamed CNN which didn't actually do anything wrong. The thing is the fallout over this controversy, so week later, we're still talking about it.

KELLY: Yes.

KURTZ: I think kind of cast a shadow on the win in Iowa and kind of took the oxygen away from it, he hasn't made much news since.

KELLY: All right. Let's talk about Beyonce because apparently she picked (ph) some people off of the Super Bowl. How?

KURTZ: By putting on a halftime show with people in black panther-like uniforms, black power salute and singing a song in which the video version, she's on top of a police car that is sinking and giving the finger and so forth. A lot of people found that offensive to law enforcement. I kind of long for the days when we all sat around and argued about Janet Jackson's nipple. But this thing .

KELLY: Did you say the "N" word? It's almost 10 o'clock. I guess, it's OK.

KURTZ: I guess it's OK. But look, I don't understand why CBS allowed this because the Super Bowl is a wonderful family event. Everybody sits around and watches it and this injected a note of racial and political divisiveness. She can do her protests although (ph) she wants. I don't think the halftime was the appropriate spot.

KELLY: That was very charged (ph). Before I let you go, what happened with the ABC introductions at the debate? Very weird.

KURTZ: It was a biggest train wreck I've ever seen. Every high school football team knows how to do this. You have a kid in the tunnel, who's number 44, left tackle, he says, "Guard, going out." Carson didn't hear. They all piled up. We're all watching it. You know, He's one saving grace of that. Two hours of scripted sound bites at least we have the unscripted moment that was kind of amusing even though it was pretty awful.

KELLY: And it could happen to anyone of us, but thankfully it didn't. Howie, great to see you. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KELLY: Well, in case you missed it last night after the Super bowl, yours truly have the chance to visit the late show with Stephen Colbert and talked about what the next Fox debate will look like on March 3rd and the issue of feminism.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHEN COLBERT, AMERICAN COMEDIAN, WRITER, PRODUCER, ACTOR, MEDIA CRITIC, AND TELEVISION HOST: Do you feel like that you represent a form of feminism?

KELLY: Well, I don't like that word feminist because .

COLBERT: Why snot.

KELLY: . I think it's alienating and the reason I think that is because it's been co-opted (ph) by some people who don't want you in their club unless you see certain women's issues the way they see them. And I think that's alienating. I -- I like more of the Sheryl Sandberg approach where it's take the most divisive issues and table those and see what we can agree on as women.

But my own brand of feminism if that's what it is it's not to sort of talk about it. It's just to do it, and I love the Steve Martin motto which is, "Be so good they can't ignore you."

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: Thoughts on that at twitter@megynkelly. Thanks for watching, everybody. We'll see you tomorrow night as we get results from New Hampshire.

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