This is a rush transcript from "Fox News Sunday," May 15, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
CHRIS WALLACE, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: I’m Chris Wallace.
Explosive new charges about Donald Trump's past, how will it affect his run for president?
"JOHN MILLER": He’s living with Marla and he’s got three other girlfriends.
WALLACE (voice-over): Today, the new controversy over Trump's behavior with women, both in his personal life and the workplace. And who was Trump's publicist "John Miller" who sounds a lot like Trump himself?
We'll talk with RNC Chair Reince Priebus about that and his effort to get Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan working together.
REP. PAUL RYAN, R-WIS., SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: I was very encouraged with what I heard from Donald Trump.
DONALD TRUMP, R-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We agree on a lot of different items and we're getting there.
WALLACE: Then, a debate between former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a Trump supporter, and Republican Congressman Tim Huelskamp who is refusing to endorse him. It's a "Fox News Sunday" exclusive.
Plus, we will ask our Sunday panel about the new White House order to schools across the country on transgender bathrooms.
JOSH EARNEST, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Nobody should be discriminated against. Our suggestion is that the rules should apply to everybody equally.
WALLACE: And our power player of the week, the Senate matchmaker.
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER, D-NEW YORK: People hear about Capitol Hill and it's a mess and everyone is yelling and fighting. Well, people are falling in love and establishing families.
WALLACE: All right now on "Fox News Sunday."
WALLACE: And hello again from Fox News in Washington.
Donald Trump was busy putting out fires this week, trying to get House Speaker Paul Ryan on board his campaign. But this weekend, Trump faces new problems, a newspaper investigation into his treatment of women over the years, and a strange story that he often posed as a publicist to brag about himself.
Joining me now, Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus live from RNC headquarters.
Chairman, I want to start with that article in the New York Times today. It's called "Crossing the Line: Trump's Private Conduct with Women." They did more than 50 interviews over six weeks and they say they found repeated instances of Trump insulting women and making unwanted advances, even in the workplace.
Chairman Priebus, does that bother you?
REINCE PRIEBUS, CHAIRMAN, REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE: Well, you know, a lot of things bother me, Chris, and obviously I’m the wrong person to be asking that particular question, but, look, we've been --
WALLACE: Wait a minute. Why are you the wrong person? I mean, you are the chairman of the party. This is your nominee and they're saying that he has mistreated women over the years.
PRIEBUS: What I would say is, you know, we've been working on this primary for over a year, Chris, and I’ve got to tell you, I think that all these stories that come out and they come out every couple weeks, people just don't care. I think people look at Donald Trump and say -- and Hillary Clinton and say, who is going to bring an earthquake to Washington, D.C.?
I think the bigger issue when we make these judgments about people are, you know, whether or not individuals are throwing stones in glass houses and when people are hypocrites, obviously, that's when these stories have an impact, but I don't think Donald Trump in his personal life is something that people are looking at and saying, well, I’m surprised that he has had girlfriends in the past. That's not what people look at Donald Trump for.
So I think the traditional playbook and analysis really don't apply.
WALLACE: But forgive me, it's not whether or not he had girlfriends, the question is whether or not he mistreated women, whether he made unwanted advances, whether he humiliated women in the workplace. I don't understand why you say that people don't care about that and are you going to look into the allegations?
PRIEBUS: Well, look, I’m not saying people don't care about it, I’m just saying I think the reason he's where he is at is that he represents something much different than the traditional analysis of individual candidates.
And, yes, everything bothers me, Chris, but I don't know the truth of these things, I don't know other than reading an article whether or not these things are true. I think it's something that Donald Trump is going to have to answer questions in regard to.
All I am saying, though, is, is that after a year of different stories, you know, nothing applies. And so, that's all I’m saying, and that I think the bigger question is between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump who represents somebody that's going to bring a more efficient, accountable, effective government here in Washington, a career politician or a total outsider with potentially some flaws and a businessman that can get something done. That's what this is about. Now, whether it's going to be a race to the bottom or not, I’m not sure.
WALLACE: I do want to ask you, though, because the question of character, particularly in a president, is important and Donald Trump, Lord knows, has been bringing up Hillary Clinton's character and Bill Clinton's character. There's also a story in The Washington Post that Trump used to call reporters claiming to be a publicist named John Miller, but really it was Trump, to brag about himself and his exploits with women.
Here is a clip from one of those phone calls back in the '90s and Trump this week denying that it's him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)
"JOHN MILLER": He's somebody that has a lot of options and frankly, you know, he gets called by everybody. He is living with Marla and he's got three other girlfriends.
TRUMP: It was not me on the phone. It doesn't sound like me on the phone I will tell you that and it was not me on the phone.
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
WALLACE: But back in the '90s Trump admitted to that reporter later that it was him and he testified in a court case that he sometimes used the assumed name "John Miller".
I guess the real question is what do you say, chairman, to women -- women voters out there who are going to hear these stories about Trump bragging about his exploits, about him allegedly mistreating women. What do you say to them if they have concerns and question whether or not they really want this man to be president?
PRIEBUS: I think that each individual person out there should evaluate our -- our potential nominee based on the answers that he gifts to these questions, but also look at what's at stake in this country, and whether or not Hillary Clinton represents someone that's going to bring the needed change that we have here in Washington.
Look, a story of 30 years ago and whether Donald Trump impersonated someone or not that he denies is really not the most important thing for us to talk about when you look at Hillary Clinton and you look at the fact that just this past week, the Clinton Foundation is being charged with exchanging access for cash, you've got four dead Americans in Benghazi, and instead, we're talking about, you know, a planted story by somebody in The Washington Post from 30 years ago that really has no consequence at all to the issues facing this country.
I think that's what every American is going to be faced with, is that fundamental question as to which person is going to bring a seismic change to Washington, D.C.
WALLACE: Let me --
PRIEBUS: And the only playbook, Chris, the same old analysis isn't applying in this election. And so, I get that this stuff is interesting, but, you know, we've been through this and it has not moved the dial one notch.
WALLACE: Let me ask you about another question, which is Trump's continued refusal to release his tax returns. He says that he's not going to release them until an IRS audit is complete, he was asked this week what his effective tax rate is, he said it's none of your business.
Look, you know, you talk about this, but every Republican nominee since Richard Nixon who at one time was under an audit has released their tax returns. I mean, is this the kind of transparency that we can expect?
PRIEBUS: You know, I’m not sure. I mean, Romney released his taxes very late and he paid a dear price for it by playing games -- footsie with releasing it or not. You know, it turned out to be something that was not good for us in 2012.
But, you know, I’m not sure whether Americans actually care or not whether Donald Trump releases his taxes or not. And that's a question for Donald Trump and he's either going to benefit or suffer from the decisions that he makes on that particular issue.
But again, not to be repetitive, but, you know, whether this issue is going to apply to Donald Trump in a negative way or not I’m not sure of. But so far, most things have not because he represents something far different than these particular individual issues.
It's a bigger question, which is who is going to blow up the system? Who is going to get the change that people want done? People are angry and they're angry and they want something done and they view Donald Trump as the person to do it. That's what this election is coming down to.
WALLACE: But don't you think -- I mean, just looking at this in a philosophical manner, obviously we know a lot -- and maybe we don't -- people don't like it about Hillary Clinton but at least she's been vetted. Don't you think that it's legitimate for people to look into who Donald Trump is?
For instance, The Washington Post’s Bob Woodward, the famous reporter there, now says that there's 20 reporters at The Post looking into Trump. We don't know much about his private life, we don't know much about his professional life. Isn't that legitimate?
PRIEBUS: No, I don't -- listen, I don't -- I’m not saying it's not legitimate, Chris. It's all legitimate. I’m just saying I don't know if it's even going -- I don't think it's going to affect people's view of who and what Donald Trump represents to them, given this election and the electorate.
So, granted, I don't -- I don't have a problem with reporters looking into things but I also think they should be looking at Hillary Clinton and her past and her treatment of women and her treatment of women in the workplace and the way she acted on this e-mail scandal and whether she's going to be indicted and the Clinton Foundation and Benghazi.
I mean, look, there is a reason why Hillary Clinton is stuck in the mud and still beating back a socialist in her own party.
So, granted, I’m not saying there aren't going to be issues to be discussed, I’m just saying I think the issues that apply to Donald Trump are so big and so fundamental and universal across the board that these individual things that we're going to be talking about and reading about, I just don't think they're going -- I don't think they're going to hit him. I think they're going to bounce off of him.
WALLACE: Finally, Trump met this week with a lot of Republican leaders, including Paul Ryan. You were the third man in the room for those meetings. Yesterday, Ryan spoke to the Wisconsin State Republican Convention and said he's not yet ready to endorse Trump. Here he is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RYAN: We think it's important that we have real party unity, not pretend party unity, but real party unity so that we can into the fall election at full strength.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: Chairman Priebus, how confident are you that speaker Ryan in the end will endorse Donald Trump and, you know, he keeps talk being a process. How long is this process going to take?
PRIEBUS: Well, listen, I don't speak for Paul Ryan, but what I can tell you is that I think both of these guys came into the meeting expecting a good meeting, but I think they left and it was a great meeting. I think they made a lot of progress and I would be -- I would be surprised if we didn't get there, you know, not too much longer in the distant future.
So, I think it was a good meeting and I take Paul at his word. He wouldn't go do a press conference and say the things that he has said just to say them. He believes it and he's sincere. But he wants to make sure it's real, he doesn't want to just put on a show. He wants to understand and make sure there's a real understanding of each other before he makes that endorsement.
WALLACE: I’ve got one last question for you and we have about a minute left. There is a report today that a number of leading conservatives are talking about trying to mount an independent conservative campaign for president. How seriously do you take that?
PRIEBUS: Well, I always take things like that seriously, but I also know that the law makes it very difficult. I mean, they could try to hijack another party and get on the ballot, but, look, it's a suicide mission for our country because what it means is that you're throwing down not just eight years of the White House but potentially 100 years on the Supreme Court and wrecking this country for many generations.
And so, I think that's the legacy these folks will leave behind. I think it's very dangerous and there's other ways to get assurances on the things that they are worried about, which is what Paul Ryan is doing, and making sure that some things are understood before moving forward with some particular people and I think Paul Ryan's approach is much better.
WALLACE: If I may, real quickly, what would you say to people like Mitt Romney and Bill Kristol who have involved in this effort?
PRIEBUS: I think they should consider the ramifications of what's going to happen on the Supreme Court, get assurances from Donald Trump that they're satisfied with that would show that he's committed to those conservative justices, make sure the justices that are being considered are people that the Federalist Society and Heritage and other groups think are great, and I think that's the better way to go as opposed to this third party route.
WALLACE: Chairman Priebus, thank you, thanks for your time today. Always a pleasure to talk to you, sir.
PRIEBUS: You bet, Chris. Thank you.
WALLACE: Coming up, Trump and Paul Ryan may be working out their differences, but there is still a big split inside the GOP. Former Speaker Newt Gingrich debates Congressman Tim Huelskamp of the Freedom Caucus on whether Trump is a real conservative.
WALLACE: Donald Trump is making progress getting the GOP behind him, he picked up some endorsements this week and won the backing of big donors. But some in the party still oppose him.
To explore the debate among Republicans, here in Washington former House Speaker Newt Gingrich a Trump supporter, and in Kansas, Republican Congressman Tim Huelskamp, who says backing Trump presents a moral dilemma.
Well, gentlemen, let's start with these stories that we just talk about, about Trump's behavior towards women over the years.
Congressman Huelskamp, you already have said that you won't let your nine-year-old son watch Trump on TV because you're concerned about the language that comes out. Do these reports add to your concerns about Trump's character? And you are a Senator Ted Cruz supporter, do you think he should get back in the race now?
REP. TIM HUELSKAMP, R-KAN., HOUSE FREEDOM CAUCUS: I don't think Ted is going to get back in the race, but, yes, it raises questions. And it's not just -- it's not just me, but I think there are millions of soccer moms, football dads, baseball dads across America, and they're trying to raise their children in a tough culture. And here they have a presidential candidate who is demeaning the women, he's vulgar, he's crass, I don't know where they're going to go.
I mean, the best thing about Donald Trump today is he's not Hillary Clinton, but he's certainly not a conservative, either.
WALLACE: Speaker Gingrich, what do you make of these reports about Trump's treatment of women over the years and do you have any problems with his behavior?
NEWT GINGRICH, R-FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER: I think for The New York Times to have this week the reports on Bill Clinton flying around with a pedophile, dismissing his Secret Service agents and decide that we need to worry about Trump tells us everything you need to know about The New York Times and The Washington Post.
They are in the tank with Hillary and it’s going to be unending from now until the election.
Trump makes no claims about anything in terms of his life before he ran for office. What he does say is he's been a successful businessman, he has learned a great deal and he would do more to change Washington than any other candidate. Now, 16 other people competed for that and they lost because people decided the voters largest vote for any Republican in history was for Donald Trump because voters decided, you know, he will change Washington.
WALLACE: All right. Well, let's get to the big picture here. Congressman Huelskamp, do you trust Donald Trump as a reliable conservative?
HUELSKAMP: Well, he's certainly not a conservative. You look at the issues, particularly issues of the heart like issues of life and marriage and family that are clear in our party platform. I mean, here is the guy who suggested he was going to appoint his pro-abortion sister to the U.S. Supreme Court and that seems to be the remaining issue is conservatives are supposed to vote for Donald Trump because of Supreme Court nominees. Certainly, we don't want Hillary Clinton making those nominations at the end of the day, though, Donald Trump has a problem, I think, with soccer moms, football dads like myself.
Again, I have a nine-year-old and he can't even listen to the guy on television. How will he bridge that gap? I don't know. But when you live and die by the media and that was his entire primary campaign, it's going to be a tough election moving into November 8th.
GINGRICH: Look, I think first of all, Congressman Huelskamp is exactly right, Donald Trump is not a traditional conservative, he has never claimed to be a traditional conservative, but he has said that he will nominate very conservative judges, people worthy of Scalia and Thomas. He is clearly working with the Federalist Society and others to put together a speech on the judiciary that will draw a very sharp line with Hillary.
The question that Congressman Huelskamp and others have to ask themselves is real simple, Hillary Clinton represents -- and I think Reince Priebus said it perfectly -- she represents eight years of bad government in government and maybe 100 years of a left wing Supreme Court.
Now, are we really prepared to say that Trump is more dangerous than Hillary Clinton? Because if he's not more dangerous than Hillary Clinton for any rational conservative then he is dramatically safer as a vote.
WALLACE: Congressman Huelskamp?
HUELSKAMP: Well, the old style of campaigning, the old ideas that supposedly Donald wants to throw out is that it's still here, we're being told vote for the lesser of two evils and I understand that. We don't want Hillary Clinton. She will unify the Republican Party.
But again I think there are millions of moms and dads out there that are going to say, do you know what, am I going to go to the polls to vote for someone who is demeaning to women? I don't think The New York Times article is a surprise, you live and die by the media, because these are things he said -- he has a long pattern of these kind of things that are vulgar and crass.
I’ve got a 14-year-old son I would never let him say the things Donald Trump says and I think that will show up in people's minds between now and November, and those moms and dads who like his opposition to Common Core but are worried about his statements about women and so -- but the problem about the fact on who he's going to appoint to the Supreme Court, Mr. Speaker, he said the other things.
I mean, he is all over on all the issues and that's a problem with the platform, that's a problem on basic life issues and certainly on marriage issues, this bathroom issue he is all over the map on -- folks are looking for some certainty and you don't see that in the positions of Donald Trump.
GINGRICH: Well, I think what you do see is absolute certainty that he will be dramatically more conservative than Hillary Clinton, you see absolute certainty not just his judge ships but his cabinet and appointments will be dramatically more conservative. And there is a deeper issue, why does he get more votes than any Republican in history in the primaries? Because the country is desperate to overturn the bureaucracy in the city.
You just cited an example. We no longer need school boards because a bureaucrat somewhere in Washington can issue a letter and change policy with no public hearings, no elected officials, no local control.
If you want to keep going down that road, Hillary Clinton is your answer. If you want to break up the left wing monopoly of these bureaucracies, Trump is the only person who can do it.
WALLACE: Let me break in here. We've talked a lot about life, a lot about values and treatment of women. When it comes to economic issues like trade, like immigration, like entitlement reform, where do you have the biggest problem with Donald Trump?
HUELSKAMP: Well, I think he said last week he wanted to raise taxes again on the rich. I mean, that is not a conservative position. I think the speaker and I agree on that. I mean, the idea of slamming down the border shut, that's not a conservative position. Allowing us to compete in the world, that's what conservatives want to do.
I mean, but the problem with Donald Trump is his position changes sometimes in the same speech. When he says he's flexible -- I see insiders in Washington not the speaker but to say, hey, it's good to see flexibility. That's exactly what the people don't want. They want someone who takes a stand.
The problem is Trump's stands are going to change as we move forward. But on basic issues of life you can't win as a Republican in this country unless you're 100 percent pro-life in my opinion. If you don't stick with the party platform and what I’m hearing from the Trump campaign is they're flexible on issues of life as well.
And that to me is going to be very damaging to the millions of values of voters. You might say they are not going to vote for Hillary -- no, but they will vote by staying home and that's my fear about November and Donald Trump.
WALLACE: Mr. Speaker, I do want to talk about this issue of flips because there's no question that Trump has taken various positions over time. Minimum wage, he was against raising it now he's for it. Tax cuts, first, he was going to cut taxes dramatically for the wealthy, now he says he's still going to cut them but not as much, that the tax increase will be smaller.
Then there was this change just this week on banning Muslims. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)
TRUMP: For a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what the hell is going on.
It was a suggestion. Look, anything I say right now -- I’m not the president, everything is a suggestion, no matter what you say it's a suggestion.
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
WALLACE: Mr. Speaker, at some point doesn't what Trump calls his, quote, "flexibility" become a problem?
GINGRICH: Sure. I think except it's always within a framework. Notice on the rich, he said he's going to have a smaller tax cut.
I mean, one of Trump's problems is he insists on speaking for an hour and 15 minutes off the cuff and while I do a fair amount of that, I can tell you anytime you do that day after day with the news media watches as they should for a presidential candidate, you will have moments you wish you hadn't had.
Let me go back as an example of conservatism. Ronald Reagan in his diary in 1986 says he is signing the Simpson-Mazzoli Act because -- which is the immigration bill -- because we have to get control of the border. I mean, it's not accurate to say that conservatives can't be in favor of controlling the border.
On trade frankly -- and I helped pass NAFTA, I was the whip, I think it's good for us to be a little bit tougher on trade. When you hear, for example, that the Chinese last year probably stole $360 billion intellectual property from the United States, I think being tough about that's a good thing. I think conservatives can be for very tough-minded trade, not -- you know, not automatically -- you yell free trade, you get ripped off.
WALLACE: Congressman, your response.
HUELSKAMP: Donald Trump has no clear position on anything and those are interesting positions that the speaker articulates, but it isn't that he talks for a long time, it's that he says different things as he talks and that's what I think we're going to lose.
But conservatives -- I think we agree on this -- conservatives don't have to be vulgar and they certainly are not demeaning to women. In our culture we have moms and dads across America that are looking, want to see someone of character and here we have a chance of a lifetime to take out the Clinton machine and it looks like we're going to nominate someone that doesn't share the character.
He has the New York values, there is no question about it and I don't believe it plays well in Kansas or other conservative parts across America. Will voters show up and still vote for a guy like this? I don't know. That's my fear.
WALLACE: Well, Congressman Huelskamp, it does appear he is going to be the nominee. So, if it comes out Trump versus Clinton, what are you going to do?
HUELSKAMP: I don't think it matters. When Congress has a 9 percent approval rating it doesn't matter what a congressman from Kansas thinks.
WALLACE: Well, it matters to me. I mean, it matters to your constituents. What are you going to do, sir?
HUELSKAMP: I don't know. I need to talk to my wife. I mean, we're both so upset about these vulgar statements.
I mean, why does he have to talk like that? Why does he have to talk in a brash manner that's so attacking and demeaning to women? I think he's got to find a way to rule that out and say that's not going to happen anymore.
Again, it's all words he has no actions to back that up. He's clearly not a conservative. Is he better than Hillary? He is. And that didn't work out well for Romney versus Obama in 2012 and I’m in fear we are going to have to vote for the lesser of two evils. And I don't think that's going to work out very well unless we see clear consistent changes from Donald Trump.
WALLACE: All right. Finally, Mr. Speaker, and you knew this was coming, there has been a lot of speculation --
Don't give me that laugh -- about you running --
GINGRICH: I thought you were above this.
WALLACE: No, I’m not above it. This is what I do for a living. And I know you didn't think I was above it.
There is a lot of speculation that he is going to ask you to be his running mate. Now, if he asks you, you're certainly going to say yes.
GINGRICH: Well, if he asks me, I’m certainly going to say I want to sit down and talk about it. I don't think it's an automatic yes, I think you have to think through what does he think the job involves.
WALLACE: And if he indicates, as I’m sure he would, you're going to play a big role --
GINGRICH: If he can convince Calista and me that it's doable and that it’s serious and we would, in fact, contribute I think we would be very hard pressed not to say yes.
WALLACE: Would you like to do it?
GINGRICH: I don't know. It's certainly a great challenge, but as you know I have a pretty interesting exciting life, we're premiering a new movie on Washington, in Mount Vernon, on Friday night. We have a new book coming out "Rediscovering God in America" this week. So, we're pretty busy, but we could probably be -- we could be lured into a new path.
WALLACE: I was going to say you could take the vice presidency and the House isn't bad, either.
Mr. Speaker, always a pleasure to talk with you.
GINGRICH: Good to be with you, Chris.
WALLACE: Congressman Huelskamp, thank you very much, too.
Up next, more on Trump's treatment of women. We’ll bring in our Sunday group including Bob Woodward of The Washington Post to discuss media plans to investigate Trump's past in depth.
Plus, what do you think, are reporters treating Trump the same way they're treating Hillary Clinton? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter @FoxNewsSunday and use the #fns.
WALLACE: Coming up as the summer travel season approaches the head of homeland security says prepare for gridlock at the airport.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEH JOHNSON, HOMELAND SECURITY SECRETARY: There will be wait times. We encourage people to have the appropriate expectations when they arrive.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: We’ll ask our Sunday panel about the TSA and those long lines.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
"JOHN MILLER," ON DONALD TRUMP, 1991 RECORDING: Have you met him?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
MILLER: He's a -- he’s a good guy and he's not going to hurt anybody. He treated his wife well and he treated -- and he will treat Marla well.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: Well, that's John Miller representing himself as a Trump spokesman in 1991. A voice that sure sounds like Donald Trump. The Washington Post, which obtained the audio, says it is the businessman posing and his own publicist.
And it's time now for our Sunday group. Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume, Amy Walter from the Cook Political Report, syndicated columnist George Will and Bob Woodward from the aforementioned Washington Post.
Well, Bob, you were quoted this week as saying that The Washington Post has 20 people working on every phase of Donald Trump's life.
BOB WOODWARD, THE WASHINGTON POST: That's correct. We've announced a month ago that we're doing a book and we're going to do stories as this evolves. The equivalent effort will be made on Hillary Clinton. And it's traditional and I think particularly in this campaign, which is one of those pivot points in the history of the country, we need to tell people everything we can find out. That means a massive effort.
WALLACE: Are you making an equal effort, because that's something that we're hearing from folks, an equal effort on Hillary Clinton? You’ve got 20 people on her?
WOODWARD: Yes. Well, it's not necessarily the number of people, it's who’s working on it and can --
WALLACE: So you’ve got smarter people on Hillary Clinton?
WOODWARD: No, no, no, no, but -- but, you know, the -- believe me, you know, the goal here is the best obtainable version of the truth. You can't find out everything. And, as we know, biography is character. So every -- look at Hillary Clinton's time in the Senate. We should do a full excavation of it. Her time as secretary of state. With Trump, every business deal on -- he said on his tax returns that there are 500 entities that he has. So lots of work needs to be done.
WALLACE: Brit, do you think that this kind of probing into Trump's life is legitimate? And -- and what about complaints that you hear from a lot of conservatives, that this is the mainstream media trying to sink Trump and help elect -- and we heard this to a certain degree from Newt Gingrich just now -- and help Clinton?
BRIT HUME, FOX NEWS SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: I think it's legitimate. And in the case of Trump, because --
WALLACE: The probing is legitimate?
HUME: Yes, I think it's utterly legitimate. And I think, you know, when you think of Trump, who, you know, for all of his celebrity is nonetheless a newcomer to politics, who’s, you know, the fullness of whose record has really not been fully explored and I think that's worthwhile. And I, you know, and I hope and trust that a similar effort will be made with Secretary Clinton.
I cannot -- the record on this, however, is not so good. The media have shown -- mainstream media have shown precious little interest in stories like the Benghazi story. An while it was "The New York Times" I guess that broke the story about the Clinton Foundation and it's -- it’s multitude of dealings, some of them quite controversial, the story -- the thread there seems to have largely been lost. So perhaps the slack will be taken up on that. We can only -- we -- a guy can hope, right?
WALLACE: Bob, how would you -- how would you respond to that?
WOODWARD: I -- I mean the -- it will be done. It's -- it’s done. And, you know, you can't do these things in an afternoon or a week. You have to find people who are knowledgeable, ideally people who have not talked before, ideally people who have records and notes, and that's possible. And, you know, the -- the -- the commitment is there. Jeff Bezos, the owner of "The Washington Post," said to the editor of "The Washington Post," Marty Baron, you will have the resources to do this on both candidates, final nominees. It must be aggressive, fair and bipartisan.
WALLACE: Not surprisingly Trump fired back at today's New York Times story about his treatment of women over the years. Here is Trump's tweet. "Why doesn't the failing New York Times write the real story on the Clintons and women? The media is totally," all caps, "dishonest."
Amy, do you think that this adds to the problems that Trump already has with women voters?
AMY WALTER, THE COOK POLITICAL REPORT: I don't know -- I don't think it helps him. But when I sit and I talk with women voters -- I just sat in a couple focus groups this week -- this other past week in Pennsylvania -- the women there not happy with many of his past statements and -- about women. But what they were the most concerned about was the issue of his overall judgment where I heard woman after woman saying, I worry that he's going to get us in trouble, meaning with the rest of the world. One woman said, you know, we know what an eye for an eye -- how that works, and it usually doesn't work out very well.
So I think the concern for many of these women is not what his past was, but what he's going to be when he's president of the United States. And I think that that's what you're going to hear much more about from whether it's the Clinton campaign or Democrats focusing on, what is it going to mean if he is commander in chief and the president of the United States.
WALLACE: And I'm curious, were they asked about the Clintons?
WALTER: About --
WALLACE: About the Clintons.
WALTER: You mean in -- in their -- in the focus group, what they thought about it?
WALTER: Look, I think the perceptions of Hillary Clinton -- and let's be really clear, these women, even though some of them were swing women voters, some of them were Democrats, they’re not in love with Hillary Clinton. Right now their vote for Hillary Clinton is much more a vote against Donald Trump than it is a support of her.
WALLACE: George, the other big Trump story, and I thought what we were going to be talking about this week, was the fact that he came here to Washington to meet with Republican leaders, including House Speaker Paul Ryan. Here was Speaker Ryan after their meeting.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RYAN: I was very encouraged with what I heard from Donald Trump today. I do believe that -- that we are now planting the seeds to get ourselves unified.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: How do you think Trump's charm offensive is going? And, in the end, do Ryan and other Republican leaders have any choice but to at least make a show of being unified with Trump?
GEORGE WILL, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Well, a lot of Republicans are engaging in semantic somersaults, making distinctions without a difference at this point, saying I support Trump but I don't endorse Trump. I'm not sure what the voters should take away from that. There are a few different ones, Senator Heller of Nevada I’ve seen quoted as saying, I vehemently oppose our nominee. But, you’re right, the interesting thing is the mating dance between Donald Trump and Paul Ryan.
In a statement issued after their meeting, but I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts written before the meeting, they refer to our few differences, they spoke of our many important areas of common ground and urged Republicans to unite around our shared principles, to which one response is name one, one shared principle. For example, Paul Ryan feels very strongly about restoring the Article I powers of Congress and reigning in any -- the executive overreach of the current president. Trump says, if Ford moves a plant to Florida he personally -- or to Mexico, he personally will stop it. And he says Carrier is going to bring back those jobs to Indiana. He, as president, will make it happen. No idea what inherent or explicit presidential power permits that sort of thing.
WALLACE: I -- let me just interrupt to say that I talked to a source close to Paul Ryan this week who said that Trump reassured him -- this was a big issue in the meeting -- that Trump reassured Ryan that he understood the separation of powers and the limits on executive authority. You can question, and I can see it in your face, whether he would do that as president, but he -- but he did reassure him on that very issue.
WILL: Well, if -- if he understands the separation of powers, then he understands that what he has been promising at rally after rally after rally can’t be done.
WALLACE: What do you think of the story that we see today, and we -- we've been hearing about this for some time, that there are a number -- it's a small number -- but a number of conservatives who just can't stomach Trump, our colleague Bill Kristol, Mitt Romney, and that they’re going around to a variety of different people basically saying, even if you can't run in all 50 states, let's put you on the ballot in a few states, basically to stop Trump.
WILL: Well, you can't beat something with nothing, and so far they’ve gone down a predictable list of people, all of whom have said, no. So they -- horses for courses and they need a horse.
WALLACE: And -- and briefly --
WALTER: And --
WALLACE: Go ahead, Amy.
WALTER: Well, it -- what I'm looking at is not so much who’s lining up behind Donald Trump in terms of big names, members of Congress, et cetera. I'm looking at one number, and that's the percentage of Republican voters right now who say they will support Donald Trump. The last NBC/"Wall Street Journal" poll, it was 72 percent. Hillary Clinton’s at 87 percent of Democrats supporting her. If that 72 percent starts to get to 90, then it really doesn't matter which big names say they’re with him or without him. If the voters start to move, then it doesn't matter what the Washington -- whether the Washington folks are with him or not.
WALLACE: All right, panel, we have to take a break here. But up next, states push back against a White House order to public schools to let transgender students use the bathrooms and locker rooms of their gender identity.
Plus, what questions do you have for the panel about the administration directive? Just go to Facebook or Twitter @foxnewssunday and we may use your question on the air.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
EARNEST: It’s actually to insure that our schools are as inclusive and respectful and safe as they can possibly be.
DAN PATRICK, R-TEXAS LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR: He can keep his 30 pieces of silver. We will not yield to blackmail from the president of the United States.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALLACE: White House spokesman Josh Earnest explaining the administration directive on transgender bathrooms, but pushback from Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick about the order and the threat that federal funds will be cut off to school districts that resist. And we’re back now with the panel.
Well, George, the Obama administration is basically acting on its own on this issue. There’s been no consultation with Congress and Congress has done no legislating on the issue of transgender rights. On the other hand, there -- last month was a ruling by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals that held that Title IX basically protects transgender rights on the issue of bathrooms and other matters of their choice. What's your take on all this?
WILL: Well, first of all, they do this with a guidance letter, which is supposed to be not mandatory, but that's their way of getting around the Administrative Procedures Act that requires public hearings and public comment. Three lessons here. The governor says they can keep their 30 pieces of silver. Most, at this late stage in the game, public schools, every institution in America is so tied in with federal money that as soon as they take the pieces of silver, they become appendages of the federal government and subject to this kind of unilateral executive edict.
Second, this is bound to be a stimulus -- and this is the good side of it -- to the growth of private education in this country. People say, we really don't want to be in public schools in they are manipulate this way. But, third, the most important thing about this is the manipulation of language. George Orwell’s 1984 novel was a genius because it said that government controls language, it has ultimate control. The '64 Civil Rights Act bans discrimination on the basis of sex. The administration is saying sex is a synonym for gender identity. Not true. The party of science ought to know that sex is a matter of chromosomes. And the -- those advocating for transgender rights have been saying for years that indeed it is a matter of sexual gender identity that is not the same as sex. So what is sinister here is the -- is the president saying the language of the law simply doesn't mean what it says.
WALLACE: Amy, you can't get an issue that will polarize people much more than this.
WALLACE: The Obama White House and their supporters are saying that this is the extension of a basic civil right, but the skeptics, the opponents, are saying, you've got federal overreach, you've got Washington going into the public school and saying, this is how your kids are going to have to live. This -- it's a tough one.
WALTER: Well, what's interesting is, when we had the debate earlier, I guess it was this week when it was over North Carolina, and you saw a lot of Republicans kind of shying away from that fight, not getting as engaged in that battle. In many cases they didn't want to engage on a cultural war that they felt like was not a winner for them.
When Barack Obama got involved in this, then it became as much about Obama and overreach and the debate that we've been having now for the last few years about a president that they feel is just by fiat doing these executive orders. And so what I feel that's happening right now, rather than it being just cultural -- cultural war, dividing red and blue, it's really once again the battle against Barack Obama.
One thing I will say, though, to folks who are frustrated about the overreach, don't think this is going away when Barack Obama’s gone, OK. When Congress doesn't get anything done, which they haven't in a long time, do you think they're going to handle this issue? Absolutely not. That gives more power to the executive and the next president’s going to do exactly what this president does until the legislature starts getting things done.
WALLACE: We -- we asked you for questions for the panel and we got a number from people who are opposed to this new White House order. Paul Indre sent this on Facebook, "what other social issues are out there for Obama to overstep his authority? He is in year eight, so I imagine this could get bad."
Brit, how do you answer Paul?
HUME: I don't disagree really and I would -- I would say about what Amy just said that, while I understand the point, it -- it -- this isn't just about Congress not dealing with this issue. This is an issue that came out of nowhere. It's not as if this has been before Congress and Congress has refused to act. In fact, Congress has acted on this, as George pointed out, in 1964, and -- and you have to accept the idea of somebody's claimed gender over biological fact. And as a practical matter, how is this exactly going to work? What happens when a man, with male parts, decides that he is really a woman and would like to take a shower in the ladies locker room? And there he is, with his -- with his male parts exposed. Now, is it -- is this really something that people are going to think is really OK in the name of -- in the -- in the name of civil rights? I don't think so. I think the absurdity of this is -- is so strong that it's hard for me to imagine that the public wouldn't be repulsed by it.
WOODWARD: I -- but it's complex. And -- and Amy’s right, it's -- it’s been politicized. And so you can't really get down to the substance of it. And for lots of people --
WALLACE: Well, but there is a substance of it.
WALLACE: And -- and when you get the administration -- I mean it's one thing to fight back against North Carolina's law. But when you have the administration directing every public school district in America, this is what's going to go on in the bathroom and in the locker room, there’s a -- there’s a substantial issue there.
WOODWARD: There is. And to lots of people it's an important civil rights issue. And -- and a lot of people, advocates of this, say it is the last civil right.
But Brit also has a point, practically, how do you do -- do this and how do you deal with it? And, happily, I think it's something we can be optimistic about.
WOODWARD: Over the coming months and years, I think this will be worked out.
HUME: I have thought of what the policy ought to be, don't ask, don't tell and don't show.
WILL: Well --
WALLACE: Well, let me -- I do want to switch because we have promised we’re going to talk about another subject, to something that we can all agree on, doesn’t involve the government, and that is that the lines at airports are just too darn long and getting longer. Sometimes, as you can see here this week, more than an hour to clear check points and they're going to get even longer this summer.
George, the TSA blames Congress for -- well, wait a minute -- for cutting its -- its staff. Their -- have 4,000 fewer screeners than they had three years ago. Their -- the airports, some of them, are under pressure to hire private screeners. And everybody blames the airlines for giving -- making you pay a fee to check your bag, which means that more people take their bags through the security checkpoint.
WILL: The TSA -- the "t" stands for transportation security. The TSA has found time, though March 31st, to have officiated at and done security at 252 campaign rallies this year. Have nothing to do with transportation security. Every federal agency that files up says it does so because it doesn’t have enough money. The IRS says, well, we got into monitoring conservatives and suppressing their speech because we were overwhelmed by new applications and we didn't have enough money, so give us more money. The same thing is now happening with this. The first question is, what are they doing at these rallies instead of being at the airports? Happily, again, this is another impetus for privatization, a number of airports around the country are saying, we're going to go to private screeners, contract this out and that's a net gain.
WALTER: You know what I -- you know what I would love to see, instead of airports spending all this time and energy on the new beautiful restaurants and manicure places, reengineering the way that we do screening. It's not that complicated. So when the person takes their bag that has water in it or his keys or he forgets that he put something else in there, that person immediately gets pushed over to the side so other people can go through. It's not hard. Reengineer the airport.
WALLACE: Do you have a solution, Brit? And I've got to imagine that you, waiting in a line for an hour, would be about as unpleasant as me waiting in a line for an hour.
HUME: When I went out to an office, I guess it was downtown here, and had a meeting with the TSA people, which is available to anyone, and I got this little TSA pre-check number, which means that I can more quickly go through the line. It would be good if a lot more people did that. Now, that would make that line more crowded.
HUME: But --
WALLACE: Yes, I was going to say, we don't want to tell people about that line.
WALTER: We don’t want that.
HUME: But it would -- but it would help.
WALLACE: Yes. And I have it -- I have it, too. And anybody can get it. All you have to do is go to the TSA.
Thank you, panel. See you next Sunday.
Up next, our "Power Player of the Week." Capitol Hill's very own matchmaker.
WALLACE: Congress is known as a rough and tumble place where these days not much gets done. But there's one office on Capitol Hill that's all about bringing people together. Here is our "Power Player of the Week."
SEN. CHARLES SCHUMER, D-NEW YORK: It’s instinct. You feel it. You know, you feel for people. It's a little like politics.
WALLACE (voice-over): Charles Schumer isn't talking about passing legislation; he's talking about his skill as a matchmaker. In three decades in Congress, there have been 13, what he likes to call Schumer marriages.
SCHUMER: The positive spin on why there are all these Schumer marriages is, we’re the closest knit staff on The Hill. Of course, there’s a negative spin, which is, he makes them work so hard they don't have time to meet anybody else. We have a bunch of dinners.
WALLACE: Sometimes Schumer picks up on an office romance that's already blossomed, but he’s not above setting things in motion.
WALLACE (on camera): Some of these people say you do more than get a little involved. They say you cajole, that you pester, you nag.
SCHUMER: Not pester. Cajole, yes. Pester, no.
WALLACE (voice-over): Brett and Nicole Di Resta met on Schumer's first campaign for the Senate in 1988.
NICOLE DI RESTA: He was very happy and I think at that moment immediately took ownership of it.
SCHUMER: Well, I care about them. I really -- their -- my staff is sort of like my second family.
WALLACE: But that's not the end of it. Because as soon as a Schumer couple gets married --
SCHUMER: I say, anything new?
WALLACE (on camera): Meaning?
SCHUMER: Any new -- new -- new offspring on the way?
SCHUMER: One of them took 11 years. Eleven years. They finally had a kid just last year. Bravo.
SCOTT: There you go.
MARLA: Thank you.
WALLACE (voice-over): Scott and Marla Sroka married in 2012.
SCOTT SROKA: Once you get married, then when you see him every time it's, you know, when’s there going to be a Schumer baby.
BRETT DI RESTA: When we had our kids, he was like the first call or the second call in the hospital.
N. DI RESTA: Yes.
WALLACE: There are 14 Schumer babies, which the senator says is proof positive Congress is not completely dysfunctional.
SCHUMER: People hear about Capitol Hill and it's a mess and everyone’s yelling and fighting. Well, people are falling in love and establishing families.
WALLACE: Not surprisingly, the senator's reputation has spread across Capitol Hill.
SCHUMER: Schumer marriages are sort of known. I have gotten mothers, particularly, who have a son or daughter who are single saying, could you hire them? You know, maybe something good will happen.
WALLACE (on camera): Are you serious?
WALLACE (voice-over): Schumer says match making is not a criterion for who he hires, but he admits there are couples in his office he's working on right now.
SCHUMER: Two that I didn't know, I found out in the last few months.
WALLACE (on camera): And are you starting to cajole?
SCHUMER: No. I think people know that I care about them and I want them to be happy.
WALLACE (voice-over): And if that's not enough of an endorsement, how about this?
MARLA SROKA: You never know. You can -- you can meet your future husband, like I did, working for Senator Schumer.
WALLACE: One of Schumer's daughters got married earlier this year. While the senator doesn't take credit for that one, she did meet her husband working together at the White House.
Now this program note. Be sure to tune in Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. Eastern for "Megyn Kelly Presents," a primetime special that includes her first sit-down with Donald Trump. That's on your local Fox station.
And that's it for today. Have a great week. And we'll see you next "Fox News Sunday."
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