This is a rush transcript from "The Kelly File," September 2, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SHANNON BREAM, FOX NEWS HOST: Two major stories breaking tonight. One involving a monster storm that's impacting much of the U.S. East Coast.
And another involving big developments that could change the trajectory of the White House race.
Welcome to "The Kelly File." I'm Shannon Bream in for Megyn Kelly. Tonight, the Clinton campaign is once again in damage control mode. After the FBI releases new details about her server scandal, raising serious new questions about the investigation and what some feel was an incomplete investigation by the FBI. We'll get to that in just a moment.
But first to the deadly tropical storm Hermine, which raced across the state of Florida leaving heavy damage in its wake. Tonight a tropical storm warning is in effect all the way from Georgia to New Jersey. Amtrak has canceled some service. Roads are flooded. Hundreds of thousands are still without power, and multiple states of emergency are in effect. The storm is expected to make its way across North Carolina tonight.
And that is where we find Joel Waldman reporting tonight from Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Hi, Joel.
JOEL WALDMAN, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Shannon, good evening to you. Your timing on live television is impeccable because over the last hour or so, the wind's really picking up here in the outer banks of North Carolina. And although you can't see it behind me, you can see the sand dunes, but behind that obviously the mighty Atlantic Ocean, and those waves really starting to kick up. Now, you combine that with about 10 inches of rain that they are expecting along with one to three feet of storm surge and upwards of 50-mile-an-hour winds and that is a major problem potentially with coastal flooding.
So, a lot of people have already taken off. The governor here in North Carolina has said better to be over-prepared so that we are underwhelmed. And you've really seen people heed that advice, but obviously this is the Labor Day weekend. It is a big money weekend for the hotels down here and obviously other tourist attractions. But in talking to people, about a third of these people have actually canceled their bookings. So that is thousands of tourists that are not coming here. A lot of hotel rooms empty and because of that, a lot of restaurants empty. And obviously people are not going into the stores to buy merchandise and things of that nature.
Meanwhile, the Emergency Operations Center is open and ready for business. The governor is hoping they won't have to use it, but they do have national guardsmen on standby and Humvees to get people out in case of major flooding. But as you can tell right now -- and I know it's a little bit harder on the television to see it, but the winds really starting to whip up, coming off the East Coast. And of course the fear now is this storm could head up north, pick up more steam in the Atlantic, and potentially barrel into cities in the northeast like New York City. But, Shannon, for now I will send it back to you. You enjoy yourself in that warm, cozy dry studio.
BREAM: I know, please be careful out there. We really appreciate your on the scene reporting, but stay safe. Thanks, Joel.
WALDMAN: We will.
BREAM: All right. So, what is next?
Chief meteorologist Rick Reichmuth is live in the Fox Weather Center. He's tracking all of the Hermine moves. Where is it now? Where it could be next? How could it affect your holiday weekend? Hi, Rick.
RICK REICHMUTH, FOX NEWS CHIEF METEOROLOGIST: Hey, there. Yes. Especially when it kind of stops moving and that's when we're going to feel the big impacts over the next couple of days. We're probably going to be talking about Hermine until Wednesday, I would say, which is not good news for a lot of people across the east. The center probably right there, around the Myrtle Beach area at this point. But tonight, we're going to be under the gun here across a lot of North Carolina and in and around the outer banks where John just was.
Tornado concerns until midnight. At least this watch is in effect until midnight. I think we'll see another one issued later on. But we're going to see very heavy rain, an additional probably six to eight inches of rain. Because of that, we're going to see some more flooding. We have flash flooding going on, down across parts of Southeastern North Carolina. Flood watches in effect really for a lot of state and up towards around Norfolk, Virginia. This is the track. And over about the next 24 hours, we're certain this storm is going to move in this direction.
Then it gets back over water, and the water here out across north part of the Atlantic or the mid-Atlantic is a lot warmer than normal, and it very likely is going to go right around the Gulf Stream. The water is very warm there, and it will give it the strength likely to strengthen again, maybe back up to a hurricane-strength storm, getting very close here down the -- or the New Jersey coastline. We're expecting to see a prolonged event here.
We have tropical storm watches -- excuse me -- warnings through New Jersey. Watches in effect for the Connecticut coastline, and we're going to be watching a prolonged event. A very strong winds, we're going to see a very significant storm surge for about two to three days across the Jersey Shore especially. Lots of coastal erosion, lot of flooding. We have a really dangerous situation on our hands likely took Tuesday to Wednesday -- Shannon.
BREAM: All right. Let's hope folks heeds your warning. Rick, thank you for the update.
REICHMUTH: Yes. You bet.
BREAM: Also breaking tonight, for the fourth time since the Clinton e-mail scandal broke, the government has dumped a big load of news on a holiday weekend. Only serving to reinforce the criticism that there's something they're hiding. Earlier today, the FBI released a summary of its July interview with Hillary Clinton involving allegations that classified information was stored on her personal server, potentially putting national security at risk. You'll recall, of course, the FBI did not recommend charges against the former secretary of state.
The Clinton campaign has been quick to react, saying that her use of the private account was a clear mistake, but the documents show that there was no basis to move forward with a legal case against her. Her critics don't agree. Donald Trump saying he doesn't understand how she was able to get away from being prosecuted. What's more, the documents raise further questions about Mrs. Clinton's repeated claims that she handed over everything that was work-related.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, D-PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I responded right away and provided all my e-mails that could possibly be work-related. We went through a thorough process to identify all of my work-related e-mails and deliver them to the State Department. At the end, I chose not to keep my private personal e-mails, e-mails about planning Chelsea's wedding or my mother's funeral arrangements, condolence notes to friends as well as yoga routines, family vacations, the other things you typically find in in boxes.
I think that anybody who has actually looked at this has concluded that I have now put out all of my e-mails.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREAM: Okay. We now know that's not the whole truth and that the FBI did, in fact, recover more than 17,000 e-mails that were never handed over. Those e-mails are said to be a mix of both work-related and personal messages.
Chief intelligence correspondent Catherine Herridge reports from Washington on what else we've learned. Catherine.
CATHERINE HERRIDGE, FOX NEWS CHIEF INTELLIGENCE CORRESPONDENT: This 11- page FBI summary of Hillary Clinton's July 2nd interview shows the former Secretary of State could not remember key details about her e-mails more than two dozen times. Clinton told FBI agents she could not recall when she got a security clearance. Clinton could not recall briefings or training on the handling of classified information, and Clinton could not recall specialized training for the U.S. government's most closely held secrets known as special access programs. Critics aren't buying it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a case of special, you know -- Mrs. Clinton operates under one set of rules and the rest of the federal government operates under another set.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HERRIDGE: The same week Clinton became Secretary of State, she also signed two non-disclosure agreements where she said she knew the rules and that violating these agreements could result in criminal charges. Clinton told the FBI that she could not recall the details surrounding the 2009 setup of the Clintone-mail.com domain whose servers were housed at their Chappaqua, New York home. Clinton said the personal e-mail account was a matter of convenience. FBI agents do not appear to press Clinton on the issue. Further reinforcing Republican criticism of the FBI director and the investigation.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TREY GOWDY, R-SOUTH CAROLINA CONGRESSMAN: My takeaway was this. Remember James Comey said she was not indicted because he didn't have sufficient evidence on the issue of intent. She said she did it for convenience. But I didn't see the follow-up questions in the interview I read.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HERRIDGE: The heavily redacted FBI summary also shows Clinton was questioned about the 22 top secret e-mails too damaging to release for national security reasons, which include the drone campaign as well as human spying for CIA programs. A separate document providing a case timeline shows 13 of Clinton's mobile devices are unaccounted for. And without a forensic examination, the FBI couldn't say whether they were hacked -- Shannon.
BREAM: All right. Catherine Herridge, thank you so much.
Joining us now, David Wohl, an attorney and Trump supporter. Alan Colmes, host of "The Alan Colmes Show" on Fox News radio. And Guy Benson, townhall.com political editor and a Fox News contributor.
All right. Alan, I'll start with you because we have a lot of -- we have many new revelations here, and they all point to one thing. Either Mrs. Clinton was not being honest, or as some would say, her critics would say, she is incompetent. She's somebody that wants to be the commander-in- chief, will be handling the most top secret information in the world, and even though FBI Director James Comey said, anybody who is a reasonable person should have known better than exactly what she did.
ALAN COLMES, HOST, "THE ALAN COLMES SHOW": Well, I don't agree with those either/ors. Number one, the FBI did not indict or did not recommend indict. And number two --
BREAM: But he did say she did an extremely careless job with this and any reasonable person -- she was a cabinet secretary -- should have known better.
COLMES: Number two is that we have no new information here. This is what the FBI already did. They already looked at --
BREAM: I didn't know that she had 13 devices plus five iPads.
COLMES: The FBI already -- but this is everything the FBI already knew, and the FBI decided there was not enough here, that there's no precedent for going forward. This is basically a political witch-hunt at this point. We just saw a Trey Gowdy, who had her in front of him for 11 hours and did a horrible job if he's trying to get anything out of her that's indictable. He didn't -- he couldn't come up with anything, and so now he's trying to save grace. I mean she stood before an 11-hour witch-hunt because they probably think she's a witch, and we keep going over this old ground over and over and over again.
BREAM: But since she testified -- but since she testified, Alan --
COLMES: There's nothing new.
BREAM: There have been new revelations. They come all the time.
COLMES: What new revelation?
BREAM: Seventeen thousand e-mails that we didn't know about.
COLMES: It's not new to the FBI. The FBI knew everything that came out today.
BREAM: Okay. Not new to the FBI but -- Trey Gowdy wouldn't have known that when he was questioning her.
COLMES: But the FBI having known all this, decided there was no reason to go forward. This is everything James Comey, a Republican, knew already, and now all of a sudden conservatives are acting as if suddenly all this new information has come out, and that's it. It's much ado about nothing.
BREAM: It was new to the Congressional -- it would be new to Trey Gowdy and the other people that --
COLMES: The Congress had 11 hours to question her and they didn't come out
BREAM: But they didn't have half the information they have now. David, you're an attorney --
COLMES: Eleven hour and they didn't come up with anything.
BREAM: David, you're an attorney and, you know, Alan makes a great point. The FBI had all of this. James Comey, the FBI director, has been a very respected inspector and prosecutor and, you know, person over the years. He said not enough to indict. So, shouldn't that be the end of it?
DAVID WOHL, ATTORNEY: You know, when in doubt, Shannon, plead ignorance. I mean, Hillary Clinton has two major allies. She has the Department of Justice, Barack Obama's Department of Justice on her side, and she's got the mainstream media completely in the tank for her. She can't remember a darn thing about those top-secret or classified e-mails, so what does she do? She makes sure she'll never be able to remember anything by scrubbing her illegal server with the BleachBit.
COLMES: Doug, come on!
WOHL: This whole scandal, this whole scandal and it's growing and will continue to grow in the coming weeks.
COLMES: There's no scandal that's growing.
WOHL: It makes Watergate look like a parking ticket.
COLMES: You wish it were growing.
WOHL: This is so out of control right now.
COLMES: This is over. This is done.
WOHL: The American voters are going to stand --
BREAM: All right. Gentlemen --
WOHL: Wait a second, Alan. Whether or not you want somebody who is so rife with corruption that she can't do a single thing without violating the law --
BREAM: All right. Guy is waiting patiently.
WOHL: Donald Trump, who has no history of corruption and a lot of great ideas.
COLMES: What? Donald Trump --
BREAM: I know that Alan wants to jump on that, but let's bring in Guy here to give us a little bit of an outside look. And what you think, I mean, looking at what we learned today, because it's new information to us. But, you know, it's not to the FBI and they decided no prosecution.
GUY BENSON, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: There are two significant news worthy revelations in the report that we saw today which did not coincidentally drop on a Friday before a long weekend. The first of which is that Mrs. Clinton used at least 13 mobile devices during her time at the State Department. Recall that her initial excuse for setting up the private server was actually one of the conveniences of one device. She used 13. Now, she was warned personally and explicitly on two occasions that doing official classified business on unsecure blackberries was putting sensitive information at risk.
She continued to do so anyway, and now we find out today that several, an undisclosed number, but several of those blackberries were lost. She lost these cell phones filled with classified information that she wasn't supposed to be using in the first place. That is breathtaking, one. And, two, this is important as well. With the timeline that is pieced together in the documents that we saw today, Hillary Clinton's team began to purge and scrub her e-mail archives, which were under Congressional subpoena at the time, a few weeks after The New York Times first reported the existence of her server. If that is not obstruction or intent, I don't know what is.
BREAM: Alan, it was described as an oh blank moment that somebody realized The New York Times was reporting publicly on this stuff, and that's when we got the BleachBit and after we got the deletion of information that could have been relevant.
COLMES: It's fine to me that -- Guy seems to know more than James Comey because James Comey said --
COLMES: If I may finish. Said there was no obstruction and there was no intent, unlike with David Petraeus, for example, whether there was intent and there was obstruction. So if the FBI director who did an investigation and said she did not lie to the FBI and could not find intent, which is the basis upon which he decided he would not recommend an indictment, but I guess you know more, Guy.
BREAM: Okay. Very quickly, David. I want to give David a final word here. I want to give David a final word here and just ask if Alan, Guy, you, or me had done the stuff that's been outlined by James Comey, do you think we would have gotten a pass?
WOHL: You would be in jail calling my office for a bail hearing. There is no question about it. Hillary Clinton's name is Clinton. That's why she's not in jail. This Department of Justice has her back. It's Barack Obama's Department of Justice. He formally endorsed her as president of the United States. Give me a break. That's what this boils down to. But we haven't seen the end of it.
COLMES: All right. I'm not sure I'd be calling your office as my attorney, but thank you for the offer if I ever need one again.
BREAM: Alan, you can also call me. I passed the bar.
COLMES: I would call Shannon. I would call Shannon. There's no question about that.
BREAM: All right. David, Alan, Guy, great to see you all on a Friday night.
COLMES: Thank you.
WOHL: Thank you.
BENSON: Thank you, Shannon.
BREAM: All right.
Up next, new setbacks for our current commander-in-chief. How a sluggish economy is sinking ObamaCare and new revelations surrounding the nuclear deal with Iran are affecting the 2016 race. Charles Krauthammer is here with how all of that could impact Hillary Clinton's chances in November.
Plus, Chris Stirewalt and Rich Lowry are here on breaking details from what really happened after Donald Trump's meeting with the Mexican president. Oh, it's getting more spicy. That's just ahead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, R-PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Look. We're the only ones that know what's going on with illegal immigration. Hillary Clinton has no clue and doesn't care.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREAM: Developing tonight, new details emerging about Donald Trump's busy Wednesday that began with that visit to Mexico City and the aftermath of his meeting with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto. The two men singing a seemingly harmonious tune.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRES. ENRIQUE PENA NIETO, MEXICO (through a translator): I do recognize the fundamental right that each of the countries has to defend its border. I also believe that a true effort of collaboration between neighbors and allies is the most effective road in order to achieve this.
TRUMP: Having a secure border is a sovereign right and mutually beneficial. We recognize and respect the right of either country to build a physical barrier or wall on any of its borders to stop the illegal movement of people, drugs, and weapons. Cooperation toward achieving this shared objective --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREAM: Prior to those remarks, the two men had agreed apparently they would not mention paying for the border wall. So team Trump says they were surprised when Pena Nieto tweeted soon after, quote, "At the beginning of the conversation with Donald Trump, I made clear that Mexico will not pay for the wall." That tweet reportedly angered Trump so much that he reinserted this key line back into his immigration speech.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: We will build a great wall along the Southern border, and Mexico will pay for the wall. Hundred percent. They don't know it yet, but they're going to pay for the wall. And they're great people and great leaders, but they're going to pay for the wall.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREAM: Yikes. All right. Joining me now, Chris Stirewalt, Fox News digital politics editor. And Rich Lowry, editor of National Review and Fox News contributor. Great to see you both.
RICH LOWRY, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Hi, there.
CHRIS STIREWALT, FOX NEWS DIGITAL POLITICS EDITOR: Hi, Shannon.
BREAM: All right. Chris, to read behind the scenes of how they negotiated this whole thing where no one is going to talk about paying for the wall. This is just a first, initial meeting. And to hear that the Mexican president brought it up right away, and Rudy Giuliani, who was there with the Trump side of this, stopped right away like, no, no, no. We're not going to be talking about that. They played so nice at the meeting or the, you know, public part after the meeting. But, man, it got ugly really quick after that.
STIREWALT: All right. So it seems like the key moment was that Trump was asked the question about, by the way, Mr. Trump, you said that you're not going to just build the wall but make Mexico pay for it. Here we're talking about, you know, tens of billions of dollars. And Trump said it didn't come up. Didn't come up. The wall didn't come up. And then afterwards, the Mexican president obviously felt obliged to say, well, no, it did come up. I brought it up at the very beginning and told him we wouldn't be paying for it.
So this, then, gets the counter fire from Trump who says, oh, no, no, no. You're going to pay for it. You don't know it yet, but you're going to pay for it. And this is the thing that's challenging when you try to have a bifurcated day like Trump did. He wants to have a beginning of his day where he's cool, where he's talking, he's on the international stage. He's got a nice, greenback drop there, it's very mild and mellow.
And then he's going to come back to the United States. He is going to go to Arizona, he's going to hang out with Joe Arpaio and Jeff Sessions. He is going to talk, hot, hot, hot, hot about illegal immigrants and rapists and murder and all of this, all the hottest language possible. So when you try to do it both ways, you end up having a little bleed over from one to the other.
BREAM: But, Rich, that Wednesday night speech is exactly how he won the primary. Millions of people like what he has to say about immigration. They voted for him, and maybe he felt like after -- and some people were saying he got owned by the president. The Hillary Clinton team was saying, you know, he showed that he doesn't understand how to do foreign policy and it blew up in his face. What other choice did he have but to go to the wall Wednesday night?
LOWRY: Well, that speech, I think, Shannon you're absolutely right. They have to underline that phrase. It's how he won the primaries. He is now trying to win a general election, which is a different animal. And I thought that speech on the substance was utterly sound and unassailable. But the tone was very much a primary tone, and I think, you know, going to Chris' point about the bifurcated day, if you're going to go to Mexico to look statesman-like, sound statesman like in your policy speech in the evening as well.
And I think that's where he made the mistake. He shouldn't have given the speech in a rally setting. He should have been in front of a Think Tank audience, where he didn't feel obligated to play to the crowd and kind of projected much more of a sense and sobriety and strength. He's not losing this race on the issues so much. He's losing it on demeanor and the perception that he doesn't have presidential qualities. So it doesn't make any sense to have this lightning-strike into Mexico, which works and where he projects all those qualities, and then to do something totally different at night.
BREAM: All right. Chris, king of the cross tabs, I want to talk to you about some polling stuff. Fox digital poll shows that Hispanic registered voters favored Clinton 66 percent to Donald Trump's 26 percent. Is it hurting or helping themselves this week?
STIREWALT: Okay. Look, Donald Trump is not going to win the election with the support of Hispanic voters. That's not how he's going to do this.
BREAM: But he needs a good chunk of them.
STIREWALT: Nah. Mitt Romney only did 25 percent. Donald Trump is going to do worse with Hispanic voters. He's going to do worse with black voters, and all non-white voters presumably than Mitt Romney did. His key is that he is trying to juice white turnout. He is trying to juice the turnout of blue collar, white voters, who stayed home by the way. And there is real evidence that blue collar white voters, especially in the upper Midwest, stayed home. And so he's trying to get there the other way.
However, he has to do it with the other part of the Republican coalition. And that's college educated white voters, who vote for him, who are supporting him in large number. But he needs to get back to those Romney- size numbers with those voters if he wants to deal with the blue collar whites. The key in the outreach, whether it is with Mexico, talking about and cementing his shift on deportations or whether he's talking to black voters in Detroit or elsewhere, the key is convincing college-educated white voters that he is not racist. He is not what they say he is.
BREAM: And, Rich, quickly before we're out of time, now he is making this visit this weekend to Detroit to stop it at an African-American church to be interviewed by the pastor there. What sort of risk/reward situation is he walking into there?
LOWRY: Well, it's a little bit like the trip to Mexico. If something blows up, it's going to be really bad. But if he performs ably, it's going to be good for him. And I think anything the campaign can do to get him in different settings where he's not in front of big rally audiences and when he is shouting, is very good for him. So, I think it's right that they're being a little more imaginative and mixing it up, and now it's a question of whether he can pull it off in performance.
BREAM: We'll be watching. Rich, Chris, great to see you both.
STIREWALT: Have a great weekend. You bet.
BREAM: Thank you. You too.
Right up next, Hurricane Hermine leaving a trail of destruction in her wake. One person is dead. Hundreds of thousands still in the dark. We're going to take you on the ground in Florida as that state begins to clean up.
Plus, while Obama's approval ratings are sky high, some of his major policies look to be tanking. Should Donald Trump be doing more to tie Hillary Clinton to the current administration's trouble?
Charles Krauthammer is here with some surprising recommendations, next.
BREAM: Breaking tonight, Tropical Storm Hermine surging through the south and marching north ahead of the busy Labor Day weekend. Hermine making landfall on Florida's north West Coast earlier today.
Downgraded from a category 1 hurricane to a tropical storm on its way to the Carolinas.
Here's a look at some of the devastation Hermine left in her wake earlier today as she swept through Cedar Key, Florida.
That's where Steve Harrigan joins us live tonight with the latest on the storm that clip. And, Steve, after your live shots yesterday, I'm just happy to see you are in one piece, safe and sound.
STEVE HARRIGAN, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: We're all good here, Shannon. But the coast of Florida is a little bit different. You can see here in this palm tree a bit of mattress, some chairs also stuck in that tree.
And if you look over here, some of the damage from that 9-foot storm surge. This condominium, you can actually see all the way through from one end all the way out the front. The wall is knocked down.
This place got pounded by 80-mile-per-hour winds as well as that heavy storm surge. You can see bits and pieces of people's belongings all over the place here, ironing boards, satellite dishes, pictures, personal belongings. They've been hit pretty hard here.
And ordinarily the day after a disaster, you see a lot of activity, people picking through the wreckage, a lot of emergency equipment crews trying to rebuild. We are not seeing that great amount of activity here today. Perhaps that's for a couple of reasons.
In some cases like this, maybe the devastation is so complete, people are not going to be able to recover at all. But also a sense that maybe they can't get back here or because the conditions are so difficult.
No running water. No electric power. At this hour, more than 220,000 Floridians have no electric power. Some seniors just came up to us a few minutes ago, furious that they're going to spend a second night in the dark here along the coast.
Shannon, back to you.
BREAM: I think that includes my parents. But again, safe and sound, good to hear it. Steve, thank you.
Developing tonight, as the campaign battle between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton continues to dominate the daily news cycle.
President Obama finds himself enjoying his highest approval ratings in years. That's despite a growing list of issues facing some of his administration's most significant policies.
First, his signature law, ObamaCare, seeing premiums rising sharply. And some of the country's biggest insurers threatening to back out.
Plus, a shocking new report suggesting his administration gave secret exemptions to the nuclear deal with Iran. And today's disappointing jobs report. With just 151,000 jobs added, down 45 percent from last month, coming on the heels of a sluggish GDP report.
All this begging the question should Donald Trump be doing more to portray Hillary Clinton as nothing more than a third Obama term?
Joining me now, syndicated columnist and Fox News contributor, Charles Krauthammer. Great to see you tonight, doctor.
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Good to be here.
BREAM: OK. So, you know, obviously this is always something that you can use in the campaign, the fact that your opponent, tying them to the current administration if they're from the same party, which she was actually part of the administration. Is Trump missing a golden opportunity here?
KRAUTHAMMER: Well, I'm not sure how golden it is, and the reason is that Obama's own numbers are quite high for someone in the eighth year of his term. It's over 50 percent, which is pretty unusual, and I think one of the reasons is that he's out of sight.
Now, just take, for example, health care, which of course extremely unpopular. Always has been. Well, in the years when he was delivering 37,
38 -- we lost track of how many speeches, national addresses on the subject, he was completely associated with it.
Well, he hasn't spoken about it for years. In fact, he hasn't sort of been seen for about six months or so because as you said, seeing the media coverage has all been about the campaign. It's as if the country has been run on autopilot. So, the blame attached to the policies is far less than it would be otherwise.
Now, this is generally true at the end of two terms, but it's all the more true because it's been an unusually, let's say, an unusual campaign with a lot of entertainment value, and Obama has sort of faded. So, as he fades, his numbers go up. Out of sight, out of mind. It doesn't pay as much to go after him. You want to go after her, and that's been Trump's strategy.
BREAM: Well, and when you think about the fact that she was a member of his team as Secretary of State and she has been critical of some things that have turned into foreign policy, sort of disastrous things. She would have handled them differently.
But it seems like Trump has done some connecting her to, you know, obviously the Russian reset, which didn't go quite as smoothly as planned, problems in the Middle East. I mean, does he need to focus on her as an extension of the foreign policy from this administration?
KRAUTHAMMER: I think the things he's missing is, look, the biggest disaster of the last eight years in terms of foreign policy was the complete withdrawal from Iraq in 2011, clearly as a way for Obama to clear the way for his re-election campaign. That was a political decision. It was not a strategic decision. And she was in on it.
She was Secretary of State. Now, she can say, I gave different advice in private, but that won't wash. I think that is something where you can tie her to him. Instead what they did is when we got the news about the ransom that was given flown, the cash flown into Iran in return for the hostages, they tried to tie her to that, but that occurred after she left office.
Any connection between her and that was extremely tenuous. I thought that was a missed opportunity. That was not a credible connection even though she had initiated negotiations on the nuclear deal years ago.
She was not involved in the ransom payment. But I think there are issues, clearly the one about the debacle in Iraq and in Syria as a result of the precipitous withdrawal was something that I think he ought to push on very hard.
BREAM: And by the way, as you know, Dr. Krauthammer, they're not calling it the "r" word. They're not calling it a ransom.
KRAUTHAMMER: Of course. But we...
BREAM: People may want to define it that way, but the State Department and this administration continues to say not a ransom.
KRAUTHAMMER: But you and I are speaking the truth here, so we do say the word ransom.
BREAM: I'm going to get out my dictionary. But let's talk about the economy as well. Because, you know, we continue to hear, well, hey, unemployment is at 4.9 percent. Things have improved drastically since President Obama took office. Others say dig into those numbers.
The labor participation rate at an all-time low. And they say that there are all kinds of fundamental underpinnings of the economy that are in trouble. How can you link that? Should Trump try to link that to her? I mean, we know what her policy positions are on some of these economic issues. Would that be helpful?
KRAUTHAMMER: I think it's a little hard to make her responsible for the current condition, but it is not hard at all, and I think it ought to be the essence of the campaign to say that she represents classic liberalism.
In fact, she's probably to the left of Obama because she had to run to the left to catch up with Bernie Sanders in the primaries. And we know where the policies have led. You know, we have now gone eight years.
This is the longest, the only time in American history we've gone through a presidential term without a single year of growth at 3 percent. This is unprecedented.
And I think what you do is you say she represents the democratic idea, the democratic establishment, and the traditional old, completely obsolete and an anachronistic democratic economic plan to go back to the new deal.
It worked in the mid-20th century. It doesn't work now. And do you want to elect that? So I don't think you do this by making the economic argument in terms of blame. What you do is in terms of the future, not the past. This is what the past has brought you, and that's the future she promises you.
BREAM: All right. Well, we'll see if the Trump campaign is listening to "The Kelly File" tonight...
KRAUTHAMMER: I'm not sure they listen to me.
BREAM: and taking up to Dr. Krauthammer's advice.
KRAUTHAMMER: They may listen to you.
BREAM: You never know. We'll see. We'll let you know if we hear from him. You let us know if you hear from him too. Charles, great to see you tonight.
KRAUTHAMMER: I'm sure I will. Take care.
BREAM: Thank you.
Still ahead, cupcakes at a major university are told not to use certain words that could be offensive to fellow classmates.
Plus, the polls tightening between Clinton and Trump as reports surface that Clinton's campaign offices outnumber Trumps three to one. Does Trump have the ground game necessary to close the gap by Election Day? A fair and balanced debate on that, next.
BREAM: With just 67 days to go until the November election, the focus now shifting to the candidates' ground games. A staff advertising and battleground appearances takes on a new importance down the home stretch.
Donald Trump finds himself nearly two points closer to Clinton than last week. But campaign experts are pointing to some deficiencies in his operation that might make it hard for him to keep up this momentum. Politico proclaiming Mr. Trump's new ad buy is half of what the campaign had promised.
And on top of that Clinton's campaign offices outnumbered Trump by more than three to one across key swing states.
Joining us now to discuss it all. Kristen Soltis Anderson, republican pollster and columnist at the Washington Examiner, and Jason Osborne, a Trump supporter and former communications strategist to Dr. Ben Carson. Great to see you both.
JASON OSBORNE, FORMER BEN CARSON'S COMMUNICATIONS STRATEGIST: Thank you.
KRISTEN SOLTIS ANDERSON, WASHINGTON EXAMINER COLUMNIST: Thanks for having us.
BREAM: All right, Kristen, I'll start with you. Unconventional could be a way we describe the Trump campaign. He plowed through the primary, wiped out 16 other candidates. He has massive crowds showing up. He's picking up in the polls, but nothing about his strategy has been traditional.
So, should he be worried about getting it in line with what people will argue has worked for general elections in the past?
ANDERSON: There are things that Donald Trump has benefited from greatly that have allowed him to be a little bit unconventional thus far. For instance, he gets a ton of media coverage, and he gets it all for free, meaning that while normally candidates have to spend tens if not hundreds of millions of dollars to put their message on the air,
Donald Trump has benefited from getting an incredible amount of coverage. But what you can't make up for is a ground game, and that's what's really important and where I think the Trump campaign has been lacking.
You know, in the 2012 election, Barack Obama's re-election campaign had 780 field offices across the country compared to Mitt Romney's campaign, that only had 280. That gap was huge, and it meant that Barack Obama's re- election team could bring out more African-American voters in key places like Ohio.
The Trump campaign has got to catch up if they want to turn out all of those voters that they say are sort of the silent Trump voters that are unlikely but could swing to Trump.
BREAM: Well, and, Jason, we're hearing from the RNC that they're going to deploy hundreds of people, that they're going to beef up these important states with extra offices and more ground game.
But there have been, as you know all along, many rumors about tension between the RNC, the Trump camp. They just see doing things differently in many cases. Those are always denied, and they resurface again. Do you think he'll take this help from the RNC, and do you think it will work long-term for him?
OSBORNE: Oh, absolutely. I mean, I think going back to your point at the beginning of this segment, which where you pointed out correctly that during the primary, Donald Trump was outspent hundreds of millions of dollars to virtually nothing, and yet he was still able to generate the movement and get over 13, 14 million votes in a republican primary.
And I think he's able to do the same thing here. I do think there is, you know, a concern legitimately that, you know, are we going as a party, going to be able to get enough people out to vote?
And I think the answer to that, based particularly on what Reince has said, the chairman of the RNC and the Trump campaign, is that they are teaming up and doing very well together in deploying the traditional, the old 72-hour program has now become the two-month program.
And I think the enthusiasm is there for Trump. I don't see it there for Hillary.
BREAM: Yes, a lot of folks would say that, you know, her appearances are much less well attended. The excitement, the passion is not there.
Kristen, that's something he definitely seems to have harnessed. But honestly, you know, we've been paying attention to this for a year and a half, but it's now Labor Day.
Now America is going to start paying attention. I mean, Kristen, does he have a bit of a clean slate as they're going into what is the home stretch now where people really start to dial in if politics is not their thing?
ANDERSON: So, normally I would say yes, but this is not a normal election. And here you have two candidates for president who are extremely well known by the public. These are folks that have been in the headlines for decades, for almost my entire lifetime. The Clintons and the Trumps have been in the news.
So, this is not necessarily a case where you're going to have a lot of voters suddenly learning about Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton for the first time when we get into the debates. While you may have had folks first learning about, say, Mitt Romney or John Kerry in the debate phase, here these candidates are pretty well known.
And so I think it is -- it's a cliché, to say it comes down to turnout, but it is going to come down to having the actual ground game out there to go find every voter who might consider voting for Donald Trump and knocking on their door and calling them and getting them to the polls.
And I'm not quite sure that at this point, the campaign has proven that they've invested as much as the democrats have over the last decade, building that kind of machinery.
BREAM: Yes. Certainly the personnel by both the campaigns and the parties very, very different.
We're out of time. We've got to leave it there. But, listen, this campaign has defied all kinds of conventional wisdom, so we'll see if the momentum continues. Jason, Kristen, great to see you both.
OSBORNE: Thank you.
BREAM: Up next, two more institutes of higher learning apparently frowning upon free speech. Nomiki Konst is here to discuss it, and she is fired up.
BREAM: With just 67 days until we elect our next president, some institutions of higher learning seem to be struggling with values that have made this democracy so great since its inception.
At Rutgers University, for instance, where college dormitories have been outfitted with bulletins advising students to use only, quote, "necessary words in order to avoid microaggressions."
Guys in the studio are already laughing list. I'm not finish with the intro yet.
And at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, where a new chancellor Ronnie Green instituted a new non-negotiable respect policy at the school, what language falls under the banned category remains to be seen.
Joining me now, Nomiki Konst, host of The Filter on SiriusXM progress. Great to have you with us.
NOMIKI KONST, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Thanks for joining -- for having me, not joining me.
BREAM: For join -- for joining each other. OK. So, I'm looking at this posting at Rutgers University, and the university says they didn't post this. This is the resident assistants in the dorms and they have freedom to post these kinds of things.
But you can't use terms like illegal alien. It's recommended that you don't. They warn about micro assaults, micro insults and micro invalidations if you make someone feel like their point of view is not valid.
KONST: I don't even know what that means. I'm just going to start with that.
BREAM: And a feature ISIS doesn't even...
BREAM: I mean, I feel like they micro -- like do they chop your head off?
BREAM: In the real world, this kind of stuff is kind of hurt us all.
KONST: I think that's the issue here. Its liberal arts institutions and colleges, the ones that I value and I really believe in, used to embrace differences of opinion, differences of cultures, and they may not always be great.
You may have to read a book about something very uncomfortable to read about from 30, 40, 50, 60, 100 years ago.
KONST: But that helps you critically think.
KONST: It helps you understand what the world is really like. And when you go out into that real world where the internet exists, you're going to see that there are differences of opinion that are very different than yours, but you're not going to be prepared if you're living in this bubble where you're not allowed to see that type of opinion.
BREAM: I mean, that is to me, college is supposed to prepare you for a particular school of study or a particular career that you're pursuing but also for the real world.
And I do not understand how young people are expected to go into a corporate culture, even to be out there, say that they were entrepreneurs and doing something on their own. You still have to interact with people in the real world who you're not going to like.
KONST: Right. And it also suppresses people who are feeling some sort of they're being attacked. So if you're somebody who is being attacked but you're told that you're not allowed...
BREAM: That you're the attacker.
KONST: Yes. That you're the attacker or if someone is being hostile towards you or you're feeling some sort of injustice, but you're being told-- as a lot of these institutions are saying now and Rutgers said this in the R.A.'s have issues this condemnation of anything that is not nice. That's literally the language that they use.
So, if you're not saying something nice, it's not valid. So if you have some sort of critique of something that's been done to you, that doesn't fall in the lines of what he R.A.'s are saying you should say, that hurts the victim.
KONST: If you don't have a space where you're free to say and feel what you want, that doesn't mean it's right, but that's what the other side is supposed to do. That's the essence of free press.
KONST: You might have one perspective, but the other perspective cancels that out.
BREAM: Yes. We're going to leave it there. But I think this is a conversation that needs to continue.
KONST: That's right.
BREAM: Nomiki, always good to see you.
KONST: It's a pleasure, Shannon.
BREAM: All right. We will be right back on "The Kelly File."
BREAM: Tonight before we go, some history on this day in 1944, former President George H.W. Bush came under heavy fire while conducting a bombing run in the Pacific theater during World War II. His plane was damaged beyond repair, but before crashing into the Pacific, the future president completed his bombing run on a Japanese installation.
After bailing from the fiery aircraft, he floated in the Pacific for hours before being rescued by the USS Finback. What you're seeing now is rare footage of that moment. What an amazing man and story.
That's it for "The Kelly File." Have a great Labor Day weekend. Thank you for watching. By the way, I did tell Alan Colmes he could call me for Twitter or for bail money. On Twitter, you're telling me just to leave him there. I won't do it. Have a great Labor Day weekend.
Content and Programming Copyright 2016 Fox News Network, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Copyright 2016 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.