Kellyanne Conway on transitioning Trump to the presidency; Rep. Kevin McCarthy details new Congress' agenda

This is a rush transcript from "Fox News Sunday," November 13, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


President-elect Donald Trump moves to take the reins of power.  


DONALD TRUMP, R-PRESIDENT-ELECT:  We discussed a lot of different situations, some wonderful and some difficulties.  

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  My number one priority in the coming two months is to try to facilitate a transition that ensures our president-elect is successful.  

WALLACE:  As Trump gets ready to name his team and set his agenda, we'll discuss both with top adviser Kellyanne Conway, live only on "Fox News Sunday."

Then the Republican Congress begins setting its priorities, what's in store for Obamacare, trade and boosting the economy?  We'll talk with House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.  It's a "Fox News Sunday" exclusive.  

Plus, as Trump begins to make a big adjustment --

TRUMP:  We’re going to look very strongly at immigration, we’re going to look at the border, and we’re going to look very strongly at healthcare, and we’re looking at jobs.  Big league jobs.  

WALLACE:  We’ll ask our Sunday panel which Trump we'll see, the blustery candidate or the disciplined president?

All, right now, on "Fox News Sunday."


WALLACE:  And hello again from Fox News in Washington.  

After pulling off one of the biggest stunners in the history of American politics, Donald Trump is now moving quickly to fill his administration and pursue his agenda.  

In a moment, we’ll speak with Kellyanne Conway, senior advisor to the Trump transition.  And later with one of the top Republicans in Congress, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.  

But, first, let's bring in Doug McKelway with the latest from Trump Tower in New York City -- Doug.  


Outside of Trump Tower, things are calm this morning after a fourth day and night of protests.  The entire block is ringed with heavy security and blocked off to traffic with police barricades.  These kinds of security precautions will remain in effect until January 21st, after Inauguration Day.  

Meanwhile, inside, the transition team continues its furious around the clock pace.  The team is headed up by Vice President-elect Mike Pence.  It includes three of Trump's adult children, Ivanka, Donald Jr., and Eric, as well as his son-in-law Jared Kushner, as well as other trusted advisors.  They’ve got to fill more than 4,000 jobs and they have only nine weeks to do it.  

Campaign chief Kellyanne Conway yesterday indicated that the choice of chief of staff is all but made and speculation is rampant that it's going to be RNC Chairman Reince Priebus.  




CONWAY:  No, but it’s imminent.

I think Chairman Priebus has expressed interest in the position.  There are several people being considered.  And it’s Mr. Trump's decision ultimately.  


MCKELWAY:  As you might recall, Trump showered praise on Priebus on election night.  That could be a sign that he may be just too valuable an asset to pass up.  The chief of staff job widely regarded as the second most important job in the White House, serving as gatekeeper to the president.  

And to that point now Trump's team reflects a cadre of competing interests, Pence on one hand seen as sober minded, a social conservative with deep Washington ties, while firebrand Breitbart publisher Steven Bannon is known for his take-no-prisoners attitude and has been deeply critical of establishment Washington types.  It all raises questions of whether Trump might go for staffers who are willing to work within the byzantine bureaucracy of Washington or staffers who might want to blow it all up.

Chris, back to you.  

WALLACE:  Doug McKelway, reporting from Trump Tower -- Doug, thanks for that.

Joining us now live from Fox News in New York, Kellyanne Conway, one of Trump's top transition advisors.  

Kellyanne, let's start with the president's agenda and whether he will keep the promises he made on the campaign trail.  In his first interview as president-elect, Mr. Trump told the "Wall Street Journal," either Obamacare will be amended or repealed and replaced.  

Kellyanne, I have to tell you I never heard him talk once on the campaign trail about amending Obamacare.  

CONWAY:  Well, as you know the house and Senate under Republican control, Chris, has repealed Obamacare dozens of times, but they never had a Republican president to go the next step.  

I think he’s -- Mr. Trump has made very clear what his healthcare plan would look like and it would not look like the Affordable Care Act and Obamacare.  

It would do what Obamacare doesn't do: let you buy health insurance across state lines the way you can buy auto insurance and other goods and services.  It would block grant Medicaid to the states.  It would create health savings accounts to individuals, which is a very free market solution that works in the private sector in many places.  So -- and he would also get rid of the Obamacare penalty practically on day one through his tax reform.  

He also has talked about convening a special session on January 20th after he is sworn in as president of the United States to do this very thing, to repeal and replace Obamacare.  It would be a pretty remarkable move.  

So, what you see with Donald Trump is what you get, and I believe that's why the voters gave him this election and this mandate.  

WALLACE:  I want to get back to this question of whether he's going to repeal it or amend it, because Mr. Trump said that one of the reasons for his possible shift away from repeal was his meeting with President Obama.  Here is what Mr. Trump told The Journal: "I told him," the president, "I will look at his suggestions and out of respect I will do that."

Again, President Obama persuaded Mr. Trump on Obamacare?  

CONWAY:  I wouldn't take it that far.  I believe that President-elect Trump is being properly respectful to President Obama.  This is obviously his signature domestic legislative achievement to hear President Obama say it.  

But at the same time, this has been an incredibly important issue to millions and millions of voters who have been disappointed in the ill effects of Obamacare.  I mean, their premiums have increased, their quality has gone down, it was a lie, it was a completely lie uttered dozens of times by the president and others that if you liked your plan you can keep your plan, if you like your doctor you can keep your doctor.  

You hear people talking about a lack of access.  And now with the Obamacare premium notices coming into your mailboxes and on your computer screens in October, many Americans woke up and said, wait, now I have to make tough choices about every day affordability when it comes to paying the rent or mortgage, food, consumables and my health insurance.  

So, this is an issue also politically speaking, Chris, that helped the Republicans win and keep the House and Senate in 2010 and 2014 in those off year elections, and in 2016, they went for a president who had Obamacare repeal and replacement as a centerpiece of his messaging, including if not special in these last weeks in October.  

WALLACE:  But I just want to make it clear.  He -- there's the possibility that he would amend the law rather than repeal the law.  I understand he's going to change it, but he might amend it rather than repeal it?  

CONWAY:  We don't know because he also has to work with the Congress, which the electorate also decided should be Republican, House and the Senate.  Also decided he should be working with the Republican majority leader in the Senate, a Republican speaker of the House.

This election was not close, it was not a squeaker.  There is a mandate there and it is a mandate for his 100-day agenda as well.  

And I’ve got to tell you, Chris, people are -- the voters have also said, stop hiding behind divided government.  For both sides and both legislative -- the legislative and the executive branch, stop using the excuse that you don't have one party rule where you can actually get things done.

That excuse has been removed and I think you’re going to see him take some significant action on Obamacare and on these other issues that he has talked about like tax reform and defeating radical Islamic terrorism, certainly energy and infrastructure investments, educational opportunities.  He’s put all this forth in his 100-day plan.  

As people read that, they’re going to know exactly what you’ll get.  But this is also a legislative process, he needs to work with the people on Capitol Hill, as well as Vice President-elect Pence, to make sure that the results that are effectuated are ones that can actually pass and become law.  

WALLACE:  Let's turn to the transition team that Mr. Trump has put together.  Here is what he said on the campaign trail.  


TRUMP:  My contract with the American voter begins with a plan to end government corruption and to take our country back from the special interests.  We are going to Washington, D.C. and we are going to drain the swamp.  


WALLACE:  But, Kellyanne, the leaders of the transition team that Mr. Trump has put together are all familiar politicians and the staff includes lobbyists who are weighing in on who is going to run the agencies that oversee the industries that those lobbyists represent.  Those are the folks that are going to drain the swamp?  

CONWAY:  Yes, they are.  If they want to be part of the Trump administration, they are, Chris.  

Look, these are people who are talented and have done this before. You can't just appoint novices, you have to have people who know what they're doing.  But at the same time moving forward, this is an administration that's going to run very differently than typical Washington.  

Finally, the voters got what they wanted, what they've been begging for for 30 years, which is give us the opportunity, give us a person who actually represents the outsider, non-Washington business experienced type of profile, somebody who goes to Washington owing nobody anything.  

And I will tell you at the Trump campaign, none of us got rich off the Trump campaign, and I’m telling you that will continue into the way he runs his government.  The gravy train is about to have its wheels blown off and its engine completely ripped from its bearings because there is just no reason to keep this consultant lobbyist axis, at such a-x-i-s, at such a level where people feel like their interests are not being served.  

Part of the rigged, corrupt system that he was giving voice to so often is the one we heard from voters.  They don't appreciate all the organs and adjuncts of Washington, D.C. working against them.  This is an administration for the forgotten man and the forgotten woman.  Nobody thinks of lobbyists and consultants as the forgotten man and the forgotten woman.

WALLACE:  Let me talk to you about one specific choice because you said yesterday and you really spurred a lot of consternation and speculation that the choice of White House chief of staff is in your words, quote, "imminent", and a lot of people here in Washington believe that that choice, whoever the president decides on, is going to be telling.  

The two leading candidates are reportedly Republican Party chair and insider Reince Priebus, and campaign CEO Steve Bannon, who is a fierce anti-establishment critic of Washington.  

Won't that, Kellyanne, tell us a lot about how Mr. Trump plans to govern, whether he chooses an insider, maybe he still wants to change it, but by using an insider, or whether he chooses somebody from the outside who really does view Washington as a swamp?  

CONWAY:  Well, it tells you a great deal about President Trump that both of those men are thought to have very important roles in his administration, very senior roles, and that regardless of title, that is absolutely what's going to happen and that is probably the case for most of his very small but loyal and frankly effective senior team inner circle.  

But I -- you know, the thing about Steve Bannon that people don't understand is that in this campaign, he’s been the general, and he’s worked very closely with Reince Priebus and the rest of us as part of that small core team.  We couldn't have done it without Priebus or Bannon -- I can say that unequivocally as the campaign manager.  

But Bannon has a background as a naval officer, a Goldman Sachs managing partner.  He’s been successful in Hollywood as well and people don't know that about him because it's just so easy if you don't know someone to always think of the negative.  In fact, if you're part of the Trump campaign, that's what we've lived through for the last however many months.  

But the two of them I know will have very important roles in this administration and this inner circle and Mr. Trump -- President-elect Trump, love the sound of that, President-elect Trump will rely on them and a cadre of other supporters.  

WALLACE:  All right.  When you say "imminent", are we going to learn it tomorrow?  

CONWAY:  Well, imminent means happening soon, as you know, I’m very careful with word choice.  

WALLACE:  It means really soon.  

CONWAY:  It means really soon and, of course, that timeline and that choice belongs to one man, President-elect Donald J. Trump.

WALLACE:  OK, but --  

CONWAY:  But, look, he's also -- he’s filling many different positions, Chris.  I mean, over there at Trump Tower, we feel as busy as we did when we were winning this campaign as we were, you know, gaming out to win this campaign, bust the blue wall, turn those 197 counties from Obama counties to Trump counties, and grow the party on his terms and his way which he did.  

But I have to tell you, we're busier now because transitioning and filling these spots is incredibly important.  Folks there are working 24/7 and that includes Mr. Trump.  

WALLACE:  OK, let me turn to one last subject area in the time we have left.  Mr. Trump also told the Wall Street Journal that one of his top priorities as president is to bring the country together.  

Here’s what he said in his victory speech.  


TRUMP:  For those who have chosen not to support me in the past, of which there were a few people, I’m reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so that we can work together and unify our great country.  


WALLACE:  But since the election, there have been dozens of protests, some of them violent, as you well know across the country.  

How does Mr. Trump intend to reach out to the protesters and to the millions of other people who are scared of his presidency?  

CONWAY:  Well, he's off to a great start in that victory speech by saying I represent all Americans, even those who did not support me.  And I would say the protesters and those who they supported have a responsibility, Chris, to come together for a peaceful transition and in the name of the world's greatest democracy and recognize that regardless of what they say, quote, "he is their president."

And you know if the shoe was on the other foot, people's heads would be exploding all across the country, that somehow the Trump -- the Trump voters would not accept Hillary Clinton as their president.  

I think that the president of the United States, Secretary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, perhaps, others can come forward and ask for calm and ask for a peaceful transition and ask their supporters, which are masquerading as protesters now -- many of them professional and paid by the way, I’m sure -- ask them to give this man a chance so that this country can flourish.  

But, by the way, Donald Trump has also been hearing from Republicans that have not supported him.  He's received calls in the last few days from Carly Fiorina, from Governor Jeb Bush, from Governor John Kasich.  And he is happy to receive those calls as well, as well from heads of states, because, you know, he won Michigan and Ohio without the help of the Republican governors in those states.  

But I can tell you, knowing him very well and knowing his management and his leadership style, he is willing to work with everyone who is willing to work with him.

WALLACE:  But let --  

CONWAY:  Even those who are going to be dragged along.  

WALLACE:  Let me ask you about working with everyone, because, finally, Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid issued a statement on Friday and I want to read some of it to you and to our viewers.  Reid wrote, "If this is going to be a time of healing, we must first put the responsibility for healing where it belongs, at the feet of Donald Trump, a sexual predator who lost the popular vote and fueled his campaign with bigotry and hate."

Kellyanne, how do you respond to Senator Reid?  

CONWAY:  With complete disappointment.  

I’m really pleased as are many Americans that he won't be the Senate minority leader much longer.  He has resigned his seat and we’ll have a new Senate minority leader.

By the way, the Senate majority leader will be Republican Mitch McConnell.  So, that’s good for the republic because we can actually get things done.  

I find Harry Reid's public comments and insults about Donald Trump and other Republicans to be beyond the pale.  They're incredibly disappointing.  Talk about not wanting my children to listen to somebody.  

And he should be very careful about characterizing somebody in a legal sense.  He thinks -- he thinks he's just being some kind of political pundit there, but I would say be very careful about the way you characterize it.  How is --

WALLACE:  But wait, wait, wait.  Are you --

CONWAY:  How is that for accepting -- accepting the election results?  You know, Chris --

WALLACE:  Are you suggesting, when you say in a legal sense, are you suggesting that Donald Trump might sue Harry Reid?  

CONWAY:  No, I’m not suggesting that at all.  I’m suggesting -- I’m calling for responsibility and maturity and decency for somebody who has held one of the highest positions in our government, in a country of more than 300 million people.  

I hope President Obama calls Harry Reid today and says, cut it out.  I just met with President-elect Trump, Governor Pence has met with Vice President Biden, the first ladies have met.  I mean, everybody is looking for a peaceful transition here in the name of democracy and you’ve got the Senate minority leader acting like some garden variety political pundit.  That's what's got to stop.  

And you know what?  What was the big narrative going into the election, Chris, where most people in the mainstream media were convinced and, in fact, were cheering for if not aiding and abetting a Hillary Clinton win?  What do they all say?  We hope Donald Trump and his supporters will accept the election results.  

And we have Harry Reid coming out and egging people on.  I would put at his feet the fact that a lot of these protesters, I walked right into the firestorm yesterday getting into Trump Tower.  A lot of these protesters are not there peacefully, are not there because they just want to express themselves and make a point or make the difference.  They are there for nefarious conditions, they're booing us, spitting on us.  They’re causing all kinds of havoc.  

You know, he has to stop.  He has a responsibility.  Harry Reid has a platform to do good here and he ought -- he ought to rise to the occasion and do that.  

WALLACE:  Kellyanne, as Ronald Reagan used to say, I think I touched your thermostat there.  Thank you.  Thanks --

CONWAY:  I don't like it.  I want the children of America to see decency and honor from our leaders and our elected officials and they are seeing that in President-elect Trump and Vice President-elect Pence and, frankly, they are seeing that in President Obama this week as well and Vice President Biden.  So, let's take our cues from them.  

WALLACE:  Thank you.  Thanks for your time.  

CONWAY:  Thank you.  

WALLACE:  And again, congratulations on a remarkable victory.  

CONWAY:  I appreciate it, Chris.  Thank you.  

WALLACE:  Up next, Republicans in Congress plan their way forward as they prepare to work with President-elect Trump.  We’ll talk with House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, next.


WALLACE:  A look outside the beltway at Union Square, near the state capital in Raleigh, North Carolina.  

When Donald Trump takes the oath of office in January, he’ll have a Republican majority in both houses of Congress.  

Joining us now to discuss the agenda they will pursue on both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue is House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.  

Congressman, President-elect Trump talked this week about possibly amending Obamacare instead of repeal and replace.  Is amending good enough?  

REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY, R-CALI., HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER:  What he really talked about was keeping preexisting conditions and staying on your parents' healthcare plan to 26.  Those are actually Republicans ideas and those are in the healthcare replacement plan that Republicans have in a better way.  

So, we will repeal and replace Obamacare.  Obamacare is failing, premiums up 25 percent, 16 of the 23 coops have failed or are on the verge of it, plans are pulling out, less choice for the public.  It has to change.  

WALLACE:  But you can't really legally repeal Obamacare unless you have a super majority in the Senate to beat back a filibuster.  So, one, won't some parts of Obamacare, the law parts, remain in place as opposed to the budget parts and what do you do for those 20 million people who now have health insurance under Obamacare while you're dismantling the plan?  

MCCARTHY:  Look, we put a lot of thought into this and we've worked hard to repeal it in the past.  We know there's also a reconciliation, as you know, Chris, that's maybe a little inside Washington, allows with 51 votes to be able to do something in the Senate.  In the House, we can move forward.  

But you want to have a transition.  You want to make sure people are protected as they move, that they're able to continue to have coverage and we will be able to do that.  

But you've got to stop this one-size-fits-all.  You've got to empower the states.  You’ve got to have more options.  You’ve got to repeal that tax on medical device, on individual business employer mandate.  

You know, there's 10,000 diseases and we only have 500 cures.  America should be a leader in healthcare and not have this continual rise in the premium price to Americans across this country.  

WALLACE:  Congressman, there were big differences between Mr. Trump and congressional Republican leaders during the campaign, but House Speaker Paul Ryan talked about the new Republican government in Washington this week and he sounded pretty exciting.  

Here he is.  


REP. PAUL RYAN, R-WIS., SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE:  With a unified Republican government we can actually get things done for the people of this country.  We now have that and now, we're working on putting the transition plans together to make sure that we can deliver that.  


WALLACE:  Congressman, what do you think you can get done, especially in the next six months, and what comes first?  

MCCARTHY:  Well, you know, it's not even a week since Tuesday's victory, but I see Republicans all working close together.  I have talked to President-elect Donald Trump a couple times.  I just spoke to Vice President Mike Pence just yesterday on the transition, how do we move forward.  

We're going to deal with healthcare.  We're going to deal with economic, job growth, that means tax reform that means regulation.  

This administration has proposed more than 500 major rulings.  A major ruling costs more than $100 million out there.  So, we've got to roll a lot of those back, get this economy moving again.  Infrastructure.  There are so many places that we can come together, even bipartisan, to get this country working again.  

You know, one thing that President-elect Donald Trump did, he listened to the forgotten voices and he became their voice. Washington will change.  

And, Chris, I tell you this, on day one, we’re not waiting until the inaugural.  That first week of January, when this House is sworn in, we will get to work that day because there is a lot to do and we cannot waste time.  

WALLACE:  All right.  Let's go through a lightning round, quick questions, quick answers --  


WALLACE:  -- on some of the ideas that Donald Trump laid out during the campaign, and you tell me how practical they are and how quickly you can do them.  

One, build a wall on our southern border.  

MCCARTHY:  Well, I think number one, yes, you do have to secure the southern border.  You have to put a wall, it could be all virtual with the UAV airplanes as well, but I think that is doable and one of the first things that needs to be done.  

WALLACE:  Now, that's interesting because Paul Ryan kind of fudged on that, too, this week.  You’re not committed to a brick and mortar wall along the border for the entire length.  

MCCARTHY:  Well, no, I believe you have to have a security all the way through, but when you look at the border, and this is something that the House knows a great deal about because we've actually worked on this and passed it through committee.  When you look at a wall but you also have the technology today with UAVs, you can look out 40 miles ahead.  The terrain is different so you can't always build in just a specific place, but you can protect it.  The number one thing we need to do is protect our border.

WALLACE:  OK.  I want to remind you we are on lightning round rules here.  So, we’ve got to have --

MCCARTHY:  Sorry.  

WALLACE:  -- quick questions, quick answers.  


WALLACE:  Deportation, mass deportation -- Speaker Ryan has had problems with that.  

MCCARTHY:  Well, I think it's difficult to do.  First thing you have to do is secure the border and then we’ll have the discussions as we move forward.  

WALLACE:  Ten-year infrastructure plan.  Isn't that -- and Trump is talking about ten years, half a trillion dollars.  Isn't that the kind of stimulus package that you opposed under President Obama?  

MCCARTHY:  Obama never had infrastructure in his stimulus.  He --

WALLACE:  But there were shovel-ready projects, he called it something different.  

MCCARTHY:  They were never ready.  

We passed a long-term bipartisan highway bill which hadn't been done in more than a decade.  It's smart to plan a long-term one.  America needs to focus on its infrastructure.  It makes us more effective and more efficient.  I think there is a place we could find common ground with Republicans and Democrats.  

WALLACE:  Are you ready to renegotiate trade deals even if that risks getting into trade wars?  

MCCARTHY:  Look, good trade deals are good for America.  We want manufacturing jobs.  I know the Canadian ambassador said he's willing to talk about it.  But one thing we need when you have 95 percent of people living outside of this country and we produce more than we could actually sell within side, we need good trade deals and that's what President-elect Donald Trump is for, a good deal.  

WALLACE:  What about Trump's plan, as he puts it, to drain the swamp in Washington?  Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has already said that term limits -- which is one of Trump’s ideas -- are going nowhere.  

MCCARTHY:  Well, I think what Washington needs to do is wake up to what happened in this election.  This was a big election.  Washington has to change, that we need to make the public understand that this is their government, that we work for them, that we serve them.  That's why you will find on day one --

WALLACE:  Yes, but is there going to be structural changes, Congressman, like term limits?  

MCCARTHY:  Well, term limits is something that could be brought up and voted on.  I know the Supreme Court kicked it out, said it was unconstitutional, but if it could be voted on and passed, it's a way.  

I’ve watched states do it, some it failed at, and some it worked at.  I think the most important term limit you have is at the ballot box, and we’ve got to show that we can actually work and solve the problems.  

WALLACE:  Some of your committee chairs are still talking about investigating Hillary Clinton.  Here is Congressman Jason Chaffetz who is the chair of the House Committee on Oversight.  


REP. JASON CHAFFETZ, R-UTAH:  There's still a lot of questions, and no matter who wins or loses this election come Tuesday, Congress still going to look into it.  


WALLACE:  Now that Hillary Clinton has been defeated, is that really what you want to spend time on when you have a governing majority, investigating Hillary Clinton?  

MCCARTHY:  Look, I’m the majority leader, I set the agenda.  The agenda is going to be about job creation, it's going to be about reforming and repealing Obamacare.  It's going to be on infrastructure.  That's the focus that this election was about.  

President-elect Donald Trump has a vigorous agenda.  

WALLACE:  Wait.  I got that --  


WALLACE:  Congressman, what about investigating Hillary Clinton, is that part of your agenda as the majority leader?  

MCCARTHY:  I leave that portion to law enforcement.  That's just the way I do it.  Keep politics out of it.  Let's create jobs in this country.  That's our agenda.  

WALLACE:  Finally, what's your sense of Donald Trump?  Do you expect him to lay out broad principles and leave the details of legislation to Congress?  

MCCARTHY:  Well, I’ve dealt with Donald Trump quite a bit.  I’ve talked to him a lot.  The one thing I found in his business world, he was successful.  He finds the very best people, gives them some freedom, lays out the guidelines and he has high expectations and holds people accountable.  

Just look at the ice skating rink in Central Park. He was able to do something that government was not able to do, make it under budget and make the job done on time, just like he did with his recent hotel in Washington, D.C. I think he’ll expect that of government and it will be a change and it will be an exciting change.

WALLACE: But, briefly, do you expect him to just let -- to lay out principles and then leave the legislating to members of Congress?

MCCARTHY: I think what he'll do, he’ll lay out the principles, he’ll hold us accountable. This is the key part of -- which I think is one of his secret weapons, Vice President-Elect Mike Pence has a clear understanding of how government works being a governor, but also, more importantly, having served in Congress. He’ll be able to work together to make sure we're held accountable to get the job done.

WALLACE:  Congressman McCarthy, thank you. Thanks for talking with us today. We’ll be following all of this. It should be an exciting at least 100 days and I would think six months, maybe even four years. Thank you, sir.

MCCARTHY: Thank you.

WALLACE:  Up next, we’ll bring in our Sunday group to discuss Trump's priorities once he takes office.

Plus, what would you like to ask the panel about which Trump we'll see, the unpredictable candidate or the disciplined president? Just go to Facebook or Twitter @foxnewssunday and we may use your question on the air.


WALLACE:  Coming up, President-Elect Trump prepares his agenda and the team that will try to make it happen.


TRUMP: Every single American will have the opportunity to realize his or her fullest potential.


WALLACE:  We’ll ask our Sunday group what his top priorities will be. That's coming up next.



TRUMP: We are going to fix our inner cities and rebuild our highways, bridges, tunnels, airports, schools, hospitals. We're going to rebuild our infrastructure.


WALLACE:  President-Elect Trump laying out some of his priorities in his victory speech early Wednesday morning.

And it's time now for our Sunday group. Syndicated columnist George Will, Charles Lane from The Washington Post, Julie Pace who covers the White House and the transition for the Associated Press, and Ben Domenech, co-founder of the web magazine The Federalist.

Well, since the election, Mr. Trump has been espousing a pretty standard conservative agenda, he's been reaching out to establishment Republicans, even including Mitt Romney, who spent the entire campaign bashing him.

George, as a Trump doubter, are you at all reassured?

GEORGE WILL, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Yes, not least of all what was said 20 minutes ago by Kellyanne Conway. She said you can't appoint novices. Well, we just elected one, which is fine, and he seems to realize inevitably that he sits atop an enormous Republican Party infrastructure. He has 4,000 policy making jobs to fill and they are going to come from the pool of the Republican Party, which is thoroughly conservative, and from the intellectual infrastructure of the Republican Party, AEI, other think tanks, The Heritage Foundation, et cetera. And these are people who know what the swamp looks like that he wants to drain. For example, the Office of Civil Rights and the Department of Education, which has been harassing colleges and universities without any legal warrant.

Furthermore, he does seem to be committed to the list of judges for the Supreme Court and for the rest of the federal judiciary. Since 1971, when Nixon finally tipped the balance of the Supreme Court, 1971, there’s been a conservative majority on the court. There will be a conservative majority for at least 25 more years. Final bit of evidence, Jeb Hensarling being talked about as Treasury secretary. An establishment Republican.

WALLACE:  Head of the Financial Services Committee now.

WILL: Congressman from Dallas. A wonderful man, talented. He’s already fought through that Fannie and Freddie got to go. Things like this. Genuine radicalism.

The one thing that I -- that I think indicates the limits of this, and you just brought it up, is term limits. You really want to put the fox among the chickens in this town, advocate term limits. I think he’ll pull back from that.

WALLACE:  Because that means the lobbyists take over, the permanent Washington takes over from the elected members of Congress.

Ben, let's talk about the flipside, and I'm sure some people are -- that are Trump supporters are getting heartburn that George Will is feeling so happy about this. After all his talk about shaking up Washington and draining the swamp, are you worried that he may not be as much of a disrupter as he portrayed himself?

BEN DOMENECH, THE FEDERALIST: No, I do think he will be a disrupter, but I think it’s going to be in a lot of ways that are unpredictable, fitting with the approach that he’s has since he got into this. There is really a question about how many of these internal congressional established members who have been around for quite some time are going to be part of his cabinet, part of his approach. But the fact simply is that Donald Trump has promised the American people a dramatic number of things. A number of different major changes in policy and in the way that Washington works. In order to achieve that, he's going to need more than just, as George mentioned, novices along the lines of people who haven't had experience in the past dealing with policy. It's just a question of whether any of that is going to lead to a softening when it comes to the types of promises that he’s delivered to the people.

I don't really think that Trump, though, as someone attitudinally, you know, inclined to engage in this -- in this type of promise to the American people, is anyone who wants to back off of those things. I think he wants to deliver. And I think that that's why you’re going to see a lot of people who come in, who even if they may have some significant degree of experience, they may have a long tenure in this town, they also are going to be people who are going to fit in -- in terms of their approach to a dramatic level of reform, a dramatic level of change.

WALLACE:  One of the most striking images this week I think we’ll all agree was Donald Trump and Barack Obama meeting together, talking together in the Oval Office. They said all the right things about a smooth transition. But let's remember what Mr. Obama said about Mr. Trump on the campaign trail.


OBAMA: I will consider it a personal insult, an insult to my legacy, if this community let's down its guard and fails to activate itself in this election.


WALLACE:  Julie, what do your sources tell you about what really went on in that meeting? Does Mr. Obama really think that he made any inroads in persuading Donald Trump and -- or does he basically think Trump meant what he said when he said he was going to blow up the Obama legacy?

JULIE PACE, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS: I think they don't know exactly what the outcome of that meeting will be. I do think that Obama, he said this publicly, that he feels encouraged by the fact that Trump has said he wants to at least work with the president's team for this transition period.

This is such a massive process that is going to get underway right now and I think that the Trump team would be smart to lean on people who have experience doing it, both in previous Republican administrations, but also in the current administration. I think that both men are saying all of the right things, but --

WALLACE:  But in terms of policy, did -- di Mr. Obama think he made any headway and this is going to give a lot of Trump supporters heartburn?

PACE: Again, I don’t think he -- I don't think he knows yet. I think that if you look at some of the things that Trump has said about Obamacare in the last few days, including in "The Wall Street Journal" interview, he did say he would -- he would take under advisement some of the things that Trump -- or that Obama said during that meeting. But we have now four years where we’ll be able to have a much clearer picture than what has happened over the last couple of days.

WALLACE:  I’ve got to say, though, I think that the mainstream media has gotten this one wrong in the sense that when Trump talks about keeping preexisting conditions or keeping the idea that parents can keep their kids on their insurance until age 26, that's been part of Republican policy for years in terms of reforming Obamacare. That is not a change.

PACE: It’s not -- it's not a change and he’s talked about some of those things during the course of the campaign as well. I think it was striking, though, to hear him say that he heard what the president said and would -- would take that under advisement.

WALLACE:  We asked you for questions for the panel and we got a bunch about this question of which Trump we will see as president. James Cammarata sent this on Facebook, "how will Donald Trump balance his brash and direct style, which many find refreshing, with the discipline required of a president?"

Chuck, any idea how to answer James about which Trump we're going to see?

CHARLES LANE, THE WASHINGTON POST: Put it this way, the only person at this point who can defeat Donald Trump is Donald Trump. He is the one who has it within his power, really just through his behavior and temperament, to make and break this crucial six-month period here. And we’ve had conflicting signals. We’ve seen him give a very statesmanlike speech after he was --

WALLACE:  The victory speech.

LANE: After he was elected and we've seen him conduct himself with great dignity in the White House. And then we have, thank you, Julie, last night his tweet, "wow, ‘The New York Times’ is losing thousands of subscribers because of their very poor, highly inaccurate coverage of the Trump phenomenon." We also had a somewhat provocative tweet he put out with respect to protesters. He has said, oh, I will be restrained with Twitter. This is the imponderable --

WALLACE:  Are you sure that isn't a bad thing for him to take a shot at The New York Times?

LANE: Politically, I'm sure it makes his folks feel great. I'm sure it makes him feel great. Here’s what I'm driving at. The world is full of surprises and very often they come in the foreign policy arena from the -- for the first six months of a new president. His ability to control this side of himself in such a crisis, if it comes, will have a lot to do with just about everything else he's trying to achieve.

WALLACE:  All right, we have to take a break here, but when we come back, we’re going to take a look at why Donald Trump won and why Hillary Clinton lost. We break down what really happened. That's next.



HILLARY CLINTON, D-FORMER PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I know how disappointed you feel, because I feel it, too.

TRUMP: Every single American will have the opportunity to realize his or her fullest potential. The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer.


WALLACE:  Hillary Clinton's concession speech Wednesday morning after Donald Trump's victory speech a few hours before.

And we’re back now with the panel.

Well, there are a number of ways to look back at this stunning election and why Donald Trump won. Let's put a couple of them up on the screen. One is that the Trump base of working class whites turned out big time. He carried them by 39 points this week as compared to Mitt Romney's 25 point margin four years ago. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton underperformed badly. Mr. Trump got fewer votes in winning that Romney got in losing, but Hillary Clinton got 5 million fewer votes than President Obama did in 2012.

Chuck, how do you explain Trump's victory?

LANE: Well, I think the first thing I have to say is to admit that I didn't expect it and that I've been trying to understand why I got this wrong and why so many others got it wrong, and that leads me to my answer to your question, which is, like so many others, I didn't understand the surge in sentiment that was going on out there in states like Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, et cetera. And what I think that is related to is that for many people this was a -- this was a vote -- and it's been called a protest. I think that's too easy. It's more like a statement. It's more like an expression. It's more like a demand for validation from people who, as Mr. Trump has said, and I think we’re in -- we must defer to his judgment at this point, who felt forgotten and who felt that Washington was focused on the grievances of lots and lots of other people.

You know, two groups formed the core of the respective parties, African-Americans formed the core of the Democratic Party, the core of the core, evangelical whites, the core of the core of Republicans. Each was presented with a very apocalyptic view of this election and told, turn out, turn out or else you’re doomed. And it turns out it was the white evangelicals who responded a little bit more than the African-Americans, who, I think, showed less enthusiasm this time than they did for Obama. And I think that may have decided it.

WALLACE:  Hillary Clinton had a different explanation for her defeat. She told big donors on a conference call this weekend that FBI Director Comey's two letters in the final days about her e-mails beat her, depressing her turnout and boosting Trump's.

Julie, how do Democrats you talk to, what do they think was responsible for Clinton’s defeat and do they think it was all about Come?

PACE: No, they don't. Democrats certainly don't think that Comey's initial letter was helpful. If Clinton did have any momentum going into the final week, the Comey letter probably slowed it. I think it's important, though, to point out that Clinton's own advisors, after the first Comey letter was sent, said that their polling had already tightened prior to that letter. So they were seeing something happening in this race before the Comey letter got sent out.

The second point I would make is that, if you look at Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, threes states that Democrats have reliably relied on in presidential elections, and you look at her numbers there, it's really hard to say that a letter from the FBI director, a week before the election, was the driving force there. If you look at those numbers with white working class voters, many who voted for Barack Obama, she did not have a message for them. She never, in some cases, went to their state to even talk to them. So I think that this is becoming a crutch for the Clinton campaign, but for Democrats broadly they see this as part of a much bigger problem, much more than what the FBI director did.

DOMENECH: To Julie's point about -- about this existence of a phenomenon that seems unfamiliar to people who didn’t actually go and talk to these voters, the Obama/Trump voter is a real thing. Of the almost 700 counties across the county that voted for Barack Obama twice, Donald Trump won 209 of them. Of the counties that never voted for Obama, she won six. This is a situation where you had a number of voters who made a decision, a rational decision, that after eight years of Obama they were dissatisfied with what they saw coming out of Washington and they went to Donald Trump.

And it's true, she didn't go to Wisconsin. She didn't go and speak to these voters. They spent more money chasing one electoral vote coming out of Nebraska than they did in terms of -- in terms of Wisconsin and Michigan over the course of the ending days of this campaign. And it's ludicrous to suggest that non-college educated whites in the -- in the Midwest, in the rust belt, were going to be so dramatically motivated by what is essentially an inside the beltway process story coming from --

WALLACE:  The Comey letter.

DOMENECH: From -- from the Comey letter, that really all it did was vindicate what people already knew about Hillary Clinton.

WALLACE:  You know, George, one of the things that -- and we've been around too long probably, we shouldn't tell people that, but one of the things I'm always amused by is at the end of a campaign, the winning campaign, they were all geniuses. The losing campaign, they were all dopes. The winning party, they’re on the course to building a permanent majority in the country. The losing campaign is in tatters. How much of that is actually true?

WILL: Well, the losing party here is in tatters. The Republican Party is as strong as it's been since the 1920s and probably more. Broad and deep. Sixty-nine of 99 state legislative chambers are now controlled by the Republicans. Twenty-four states, they have the Republican governor and the entire control of the legislature. Only six states have Democratic governors and Democratic legislatures. Thirty-four Republican governors. That means if you're looking for a deeper bench for presidential candidates for the Democratic Party, you have to start with 16 governors is all they've got. Furthermore, one-third of the House caucus of the Democratic Party are from three states, Massachusetts, New York and California.

WALLACE:  Yes, I saw that. That's astonishing.

WILL: That’s -- they’re -- they’re in danger of becoming what the Republicans were thought to be in danger of becoming, a regional party.

WALLACE:  But -- but let me pursue this with you because there was so much talk before the election, before election night, just before election night, about the Republican Party being in shambles and that there was this split between the establishment and the Cruz conservative Tea Party wing and the Trumpists. What happened to that?

WILL: They were united by Barack Obama. They were united by an agenda. Chuck said people felt forgotten by -- no, I think they felt condescended to. And there's something about progressivism that just is condescension. We know what your healthcare ought to be, be quiet and take your medicine. We know how much water should come through your shower head. We know what kind of toilets you ought to have. We're going to change your light bulbs, be quiet and take our direction, and people are tired of it.

LANE: Yes. Well, I -- I have to say, I’ll take that as a friendly amendment, George. And I also think, just when we’re talking about factors here, I think environmentalism in a usual way worked against the Democratic Party this year. I did a little back of the envelope coalition about the most coal dependent states in terms of electricity generation in this country. There are 25 most dependent, 20 of them Trump carried. He carried Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin, which are the three most coal dependent states in terms of electricity generation. That power plan to focus on global warming and stuff that he pushed with a relatively thin legal basis might have provided the small -- a part, at least, of the small margin that contributed to his defeat.

DOMENECH: There is a great -- there’s a great irony in Bill Clinton ending his career arguing a lonely voice within the Clinton campaign that they need to pay attention to the needs and priorities of the white, working class. He was the only one within that campaign structure who actually had that right, and they didn't listen to him.

PACE: And he was laughed at --


PACE: And ridiculed by a lot of people in the Clinton campaign who said he is --

WALLACE:  Is that really true?

PACE: Yes.

WALLACE:  I mean I’ve heard that but --

PACE: After the -- after the Wisconsin primary when Bill Clinton wanted Hillary to spend more time there, they laughed at him.


WALLACE:  No, go ahead. You can finish your --

PACE: No, they -- they -- they laughed at him and -- and basically said --

DOMENECH: They decided --

PACE: He's going after the voters that supported him instead of the ones that will -- he says she’ll need.

WALLACE:  Thank you, panel. See you next Sunday. Up next, a look back at one of the most remarkable weeks ever in presidential politics


WALLACE:  A look at the skyline of Columbus, Ohio. A bell weather state that Mr. Trump turned into a blowout win for Republicans.

Well, for the past 18 months, we've been following the twists and turns on the campaign trail, but now we're looking ahead to the transition for President-Elect Donald Trump.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Donald Trump will be the 45th president of the United States.

TRUMP: It's been what they call a historic event, but to be really historic, we have to do a great job.

CLINTON: This is painful and it will be for a long time.

RYAN: He connected in ways with people no one else did. He turned politics on its head. And now Donald Trump will lead a unified Republican government.

OBAMA: Everybody is sad when their side loses an election. But the day after, we have to remember that we're actually all on one team.

CROWD (changing): Not my president! Not my president!


OBAMA: We now are going to want to do everything we can to help you succeed, because if you succeed, then the country succeeds.

TRUMP: Mr. President, it was a great honor being with you and I look forward to being with you many, many more times in the future. Thank you.


RYAN: This is the amphitheater (INAUDIBLE).

QUESTION: What’s your reaction?

TRUMP: Really beautiful.

JIMMY FALLON, "THE TONIGHT SHOW": Of course this means that early next year Trump will be moving into the White House where he will become the first president who moves in and hangs up his own portrait.


STEPHEN COLBERT, "THE LATE SHOW": This -- this is what it feels like when America is made great again. I --

QUESTION: What was -- what was on the agenda today for you?

JIMMY KIMMEL, "JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE": Weirdest dream last night. Remember that guy who used to host "The Apprentice"? I dreamed we elected him president.


WALLACE:  And now with 68 days until his inauguration, there’s a lot of work ahead for Donald Trump and his team.

And that's it for today. Have a great week and we’ll see you next "Fox News Sunday."

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