HANNITY

Cruz: Term limits an effective way to 'drain the swamp'; Assange: Secrecy leads to incompetence in government

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," January 5, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: And welcome to "Hannity." So America's top intelligence official goes to Capitol Hill and testifies that Russian hacking did not influence the election, which, by the way, completely shatters the Democrats and their latest attempt to try and undermine President-elect Donald Trump.

Now, this is information I'm about to give you, I promise you, you will not hear in the corrupt liberal media. By the way, I hope Senator John McCain and Senator Lindsey Graham -- I hope they're paying very close attention tonight because that's tonight's "Opening Monologue."

The Director Of National Intelligence, James Clapper -- he appeared before the Senate Armed Services Committee earlier today and was asked about a major post-election Democratic talking point, the claim that Russian hacking handed the election to Donald Trump. And here's what Clapper said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAMES CLAPPER, DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: They did not change any vote tallies or anything of that sort.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I'm just...

CLAPPER: And we had no way of gauging the impact that -- certainly, the intelligence community can't gauge the impact that it had on the choices that the electors made. There's no way for us to gauge that. Whether or not that constitutes an act of war, I think is a very heavy policy call that I don't believe the intelligence community should make. But it's certainly -- would carry, in my view, great gravity.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: All right, let me explain what this means. Everything that you have been hearing from the president, from Hillary Clinton, from her campaign, from the Democratic Party about hacking determining the outcome of this election is not true.

Now, here's what is true. Now, did the Russians hack into our voting machines? No, they did not. Did WikiLeaks, though -- did they reveal how corrupt the liberal news media is and that how they colluded with the Clinton campaign? Yes, that's true. Did WikiLeaks reveal how some DNC staffers made anti-Semitic, misogynistic, racist, homophobic, sexist comments? Yes, that was revealed. Did WikiLeaks reveal that the DNC tried to discredit Bernie Sanders and rig the primary for Hillary Clinton? Yes, that's true. That was revealed, too.

So this isn't about Julian Assange, this is all just another excuse by the Democrats as to why Hillary Clinton lost the election and an attempt to delegitimize Donald Trump's presidency and his victory.

Now, we do know that when Assange was 16 years old, he hacked into NASA. He hacked into the Department of Defense! We have known about WikiLeaks now for 10 years. Now, this group has been publishing classified government information that clearly shows that this country, the United States America, has major cyber security problems.

Now, tonight, we're going to play more of our exclusive interview with Julian Assange where he's going to explain why he what he does. Here's a quick previews.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JULIAN ASSANGE, WIKILEAKS FOUNDER: Why are we interested in publishing information? (INAUDIBLE) because people can do things with power. They can do very bad things with power. If they're incompetent, they can do dangerous things.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Now, we're going to play the rest of that exchange later tonight, but first, I have said this for years. Cybersecurity needs to be beefed up very quickly. Why? We can't have Russia, North Korea, China, Iran, other foreign adversaries hacking into our government systems!

So what has the Obama administration done in the past eight years to stop this? Well, let's take a look at all the government agencies. Now, most of you do not know this. It's not being reported by the media. But let's look at the government agencies that have been hacked into since President Obama took office.

Now, since 2009, look at this. Hackers have attacked the U.S. electrical grid. They've attacked the Pentagon's Joint Strike Fighter project. They have attacked NASA. They've attacked the Department of Energy, the Federal Election Commission networks, even the U.S. Postal Service, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. That's been hacked.

Look at this. The White House has been hacked since Obama's been president! The State Department has been hacked. The Department of Defense has been hacked. The IRS has been hacked, and at the Office of Personnel Management -- all have been hacked.

Now, President Obama -- by the way, and John McCain and Lindsey Graham and the Democrats -- if they were all serious about hacking, then would they have not done something about this while all of this has been happening? Did you even hear about this before?

Now, let's take, for example, China. They hacked the Office of Personal Management. This was 2015. They got sensitive information on over 21 million people in America, and that information means those people's information was compromised. And then the CIA -- at the time, they thought the breach was so serious that they removed agency officers that were stationed in China as a precautionary measure.

But the president never spoke about it publicly, not one time. No diplomats were removed, no sanctions. Now, we also had Edward Snowden. He was leaking all kinds of classified government information, not to mention the major revelations over the years from WikiLeaks.

Look at all this sensitive information that was exposed by WikiLeaks in years earlier, years prior. By the way, have Democrats, John McCain, Lindsey Graham -- in all this time, have they done anything? We'll put it back up on the screen. Have they done anything to stop stuff like this that we put on the screen from happening? No, they haven't done anything.

So let me put this all into perspective. There's a big difference between a political party being hacked and sensitive U.S. government information that is being stolen that exposes secrets and potentially is putting American lives at risk. Now, the only thing the DNC and the Podesta leaks exposed was the truth about the Democrats being corrupt. It confirmed everything that many of us already suspected!

So here's my message to the sore loser left. You can complain all you want about this, but the fact is, this has been going on for eight years and even before that. And President Obama, John McCain, Lindsey Graham did nothing about it. So if Hillary Clinton and the Democrats want to complain, want to blame people, maybe they should blame Barack Obama.

Now, I don't think the Democrats are being sincere. I think what they're trying to do is score cheap political points. For example, listen to what Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill said at today's hearing. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. CLAIRE MCCASKILL, D-MO.: The notion that the elected -- the soon elected leader of this country would put Julian Assange on a pedestal compared to the men and women of the intelligence community and the military that is so deeply embedded in the intelligence community -- I think it should bring about a hue and cry. No whether you're Republican or a Democrat, there should be howls. And mark my words, if the roles were reversed, there would be howls from the Republican side of the aisle.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Now, of course, President-elect Trump saw this new takedown attempt coming, and before the hearing, he tweeted, quote, "The dishonest media likes saying that I'm in agreement with Julian Assange. Wrong. I simply state what he states. It is for the people to make up their own minds as to the truth. The media lies to make it look like I'm against intelligence, when in fact, I am a big fan."

Now, as the president-elect's own team said, well, Mr. Trump has every right to be skeptical about what's been coming out about the election hacking, and today's hearing proves that Donald Trump was right to push back against the left's untrue claims.

Now, also tonight, just to remind you viewers of what WikiLeaks did, in fact, reveal during the 2016 election, we're going to put up on the screen again, full screens, on the side of your screen so you can be reminded of what we did learn from WikiLeaks as this eight-year period of doing nothing to stop cyberattacks was going on.

Here with reaction, editor-in-chief of Lifezette, Fox News contributor, nationally syndicated talk show host Laura Ingraham. Laura, the amazing thing about this -- we've known about this! Every government agency has been hacked! Not a peep out of Obama, nothing done to fix the problem. John McCain being all sanctimonious, Lindsey Graham all sanctimonious -- and I'm thinking, You guys have been there all this time. You've known about every agency being hacked. Why didn't they do anything then?

LAURA INGRAHAM, FOX CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I think it was a very inconvenient truth, Sean, that you aptly pointed out in your monologue, that for the last eight years plus, the United States has been exceedingly vulnerable to cyber attacks from a variety of sources, some state-sponsored, some not. Some are attacks by, you know, one-off hackers, you know, having a joyride through the internet.

But the bottom line is both Democrats and Republicans do agree that we need an entire revamp, and Trump is going to do this, I believe -- an entire revamp to our approach to cyber security. And that really was -- as many senators tried to point out today, that was supposed to be the focus of the hearings today.

The Russia, you know, deal took up a lot of it, but the focus is supposed to be what are we going to do about the future of our cybersecurity efforts? What has been done thus far, and what can we do to stop it? And I think as far as I heard from a lot of the witness testimony, the government testimony, they're still trying to play catchup on a lot of this stuff. That's the biggest scandal here, when, as you pointed out, China took 20 million personnel files, including mine. I got a note from...

HANNITY: By the way, I want a copy -- if the Chinese are watching tonight, I'd like a copy of Laura's files, please.

INGRAHAM: Oh, good!

(LAUGHTER)

INGRAHAM: All my -- all my personal information!

HANNITY: Are all your big secrets in there?

INGRAHAM: It's so exciting. But you know, they -- so they have all this on everybody. And some liberals are pointing out, Well, China didn't use this information. And I think we can answer, Well, how do we know? I mean, it could be used as in the future. Might be being held in abeyance for a future -- so you're right, they didn't take any of this seriously when it was happening from other state sponsors, and it was -- it was basically admitted today that there's no sense that this affected the outcome of the election.

Was Russia perhaps involved through, you know, layers of other hacking helpers? You know, apparently, the report was delivered to the president today. More specifics were in that. A declassified version will be released to the public. And Donald Trump will get his report tomorrow. He'll get his briefing tomorrow.

HANNITY: All right, let me ask you this. Let's compare because I'll just give -- I'll just give WikiLeaks leaks up to 2012. So they had all these years to fix this. For example, the operating procedures for Camp Delta, for Gitmo. They released the classified video of a series of attacks in Baghdad. Remember two reporters for Reuters were killed. The Afghanistan war logs were released. The Iraqi war logs were released. Diplomatic cables were released. The WikiLeaks released the Gitmo files. They released the Syria files.

And then four years later, the DNC files. Nobody cared about that. Why do they care about the DNC, which is not even a government agency?

INGRAHAM: Well, obviously, the broader effort here is to cast aspersions on the legitimacy of Trump's electoral victory. And this will be done both through this story, as long as they can keep it alive, and through other means and I think efforts by the left over the next four years. This is not going to stop with this story. And I don't have any view about whether the Russians were involved. I -- I -- who knows? I mean, the intelligence agencies say unequivocally...

HANNITY: I don't know, either.

INGRAHAM: ... that they think it -- think it was.

HANNITY: But why don't they show us the evidence? Congress has been requesting the evidence. They won't even go to the hearing with it. Julian Assange is adamant saying no.

INGRAHAM: Right. And The Hill today reported very different from The New York Times. The Hill reported that they were very light on any evidence backing up their claim...

HANNITY: Right!

INGRAHAM: ... that Russia -- well, what the DNI is saying, Sean, is that, Well, be have to be very careful about releasing methods and sources. We're going to declassify as much as we can, but we have to be careful because of the sensitive nature of all this.

HANNITY: Well, where was this urgency when NASA was hacked, the White House was hacked...

INGRAHAM: Right.

HANNITY: ... the State Department was hacked...

INGRAHAM: Well, that was all embarrassing...

HANNITY: ... the Department of Defense was hacked?

INGRAHAM: Sean, you nailed it, though. That was embarrassing to the Democrats. Now they think is embarrassing to Trump, or -- embarrassing to his victory or again, you know...

HANNITY: So this is political.

INGRAHAM: ... slighting his victory.

HANNITY: This is all political.

INGRAHAM: Oh, I think -- I think...

HANNITY: It's not about -- shouldn't they have fixed cybersecurity eight years ago, ten years ago?

INGRAHAM: I -- well, I think the -- the -- even the way that Hillary went about, of course, storing her e-mails -- I mean, there -- if this was so important that people not use private e-mails, e-mail servers, then why didn't they move to seize that computer early on of Hillary's?

HANNITY: Yes.

HANNITY: I mean -- I mean, if this was really a serious issue, they could've done a lot more in the beginning of that investigation. But again, it was inconvenient for the Democrats. I have no doubt that we have other countries who are adversaries who want to muck around in our system.

HANNITY: North Korea, Iran, China...

INGRAHAM: No doubt.

INGRAHAM: ... and even Russia. I believe all that's true.

INGRAHAM: No doubt.

HANNITY: By the way, I'm willing to pay the Chinese huge amounts of money to get your file.

INGRAHAM: OK. It's probably pretty boring. But it does have my, you know, phone numbers, old places of...

HANNITY: Wow.

INGRAHAM: ... of residence, you know, all that stuff you could use to get I guess passwords, and I don't know, just dig up old, like, pranks I did in college or something. I don't know.

HANNITY: Well, that became a big issue, if you run for president, you're going to be Mitt Romney (INAUDIBLE) whatever is there, so...

INGRAHAM: Good point.

HANNITY: All right.

INGRAHAM: Good point.

HANNITY: Laura, good to see you. Thank you.

INGRAHAM: Good to be with you.

HANNITY: Happy new year, by the way.

INGRAHAM: Happy year.

HANNITY: And up next tonight right here on "Hannity"...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We will repeal the disaster known as "Obama care" and create new health care, all sorts of reforms that work for you and your family.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: So President-elect Donald Trump has vowed to repeal and replace ObamaCare. How exactly is he going to do that? Well, he's calling out Senator Chuck Schumer for standing in the way. Up next, we'll get reaction from Ari Fleischer, Austan Goolsbee and Michael Cohen.

And also later tonight, Senator Ted Cruz and Michelle Malkin -- they'll be with us and much, much more straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(NEWSBREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We will repeal the disaster known as ObamaCare and create new health care, all sorts of reforms that work for you and your family.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: All right, that was President-elect Trump on his thank-you tour promising to repeal and replace "Obama care." Now, this morning, Donald Trump tweeted, "The Democrats lead by head clown Chuck Schumer know how bad "Obama care" is, and what a mess they are in. Instead of working to fix it, they do the typical political thing and blame. The fact is, ‘Obama care' was a lie from the beginning -- keep your doctor, keep your plan. It's time for Republicans and Democrats to get together and come up with a health care plan that really works, much less expensive and far better."

And it's a good thing, by the way, that he is not backing down because the numbers are grim. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, the increase in health care costs for employer-sponsored benefits since 2008, Obama's elected, is now $5,462. That is a 43 percent increase.

And as we told you last night, this year, ObamaCare premiums are increasing by 25 percent on average. Premiums on average for a family of four making $60,000 a year -- well, that's going to spike by 43.6 percent. And by the way, deductibles for the same group, they're skyrocketing by 22.9 percent. By the way, if you live in Arizona, it's a 116 percent increase this year alone.

Here with reaction, former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer, former Obama economic adviser Austan Goolsbee, and from the Trump organization, Michael Cohen is with us.

Ari, this was a promise Republicans made. If you are paying over $5,500 more a year, and this year along, you're going to see increases on average of 30 percent or higher, how do you justify that based on the plan that was supposed to keep your doctor, keep your plan and save $2,500 per family per year?

ARI FLEISCHER, FMR. WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Yes, this is a really, Sean, ultimate example of government largesse and government failure. It's an example of how you can spend trillions of dollars in subsidized something, so at least somebody gets some level of insurance that they didn't have before.

But it's just not worth it to society. It's not worth it to those who had their premiums hiked so they could pay more, to people who such high deductibles their insurance is worthless to begin with.

It's vital Republicans act on what they said they would do and repeal it. They have to do it. They also have to replace it, and Sean, I would Republicans need to replace it in 2017. The worst thing for Republicans will be if they repeal it and then years go by before they replace...

HANNITY: Well, Paul Ryan said this year.

FLEISCHER: Republicans promised both, they need to deliver both.

HANNITY: And they have nine different individual plans with some similarities, health savings accounts. Donald Trump talked at length to me about it. That increases competition, affordability. It also includes bringing it job to job, buying across state lines.

You know, Austan, you are pretty honest guy, but you always spin. Obama said...

(CROSSTALK)

AUSTAN GOOLSBEE, FMR. OBAMA ECONOMIC ADVISER: ... no spin.

HANNITY: Hang on. Keep your doctor, keep your plan, save on average $2,500 a year. Now, why do I know you so well that you're going to say Well, even though it went up $5,400 or $5,500 a family, it still is a savings. Why do I expect that to come out of that liberal wonderful mouth of yours?

GOOLSBEE: OK, it will -- it will, but first, for anybody that went to MIT, the MIT alumni magazine -- they had an article in which, Sean, you're quoted saying very nice things about me. Your viewers are going to be very upset when they read...

(LAUGHTER)

HANNITY: I love you personally! I really do!

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: You're just wrong, but I love you.

GOOLSBEE: But I will say this. Sean, what did not observe in the numbers that you quoted -- and unfortunately, for Donald Trump, he's going to have to deal with the same problem Obama's dealt with, is those prices that are up 40 percent in the last eight years -- you failed to mention that that's the slowest rate of increase of health care prices in the last half- century.

HANNITY: OK, but millions...

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: Millions lost their plan...

GOOLSBEE: But now Donald Trump is about to own everything everyone hates about the health system.

HANNITY: All right, that's the Democratic talking point.

GOOLSBEE: Because he's going to make a change!

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: Well, Michael...

MICHAEL COHEN, TRUMP ORGANIZATION: I don't even know where this man is coming from. In all honesty, at the end of the day, there's, what, 18 million people joined ObamaCare? Of course, after spending $1.8 or $2 trillion...

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: ... keep redoing it.

COHEN: Right, and to some Canadian company as opposed to using our tech geniuses in this country. Let me tell you the difference, Sean. Donald Trump is a -- a -- he's gentleman who knows how to get things done. It's going to be like Trump rink, where he went ahead and...

HANNITY: This is the Wollman rink in Central Park.

COHEN: That's correct -- where he went ahead and it was a failing item for a long time. He came in. He fixed it. He knows what to do.

HANNITY: Wait a minute. (INAUDIBLE) under budget...

COHEN: Ahead of schedule...

HANNITY: Ahead of schedule.

COHEN: And it's an absolute success. And he's going to do the same sort of things for this country exactly the way he did for his Trump Organization.

HANNITY: Well, let me -- Ari, I've always like competition. In other words, if you have the ability, if you live New York, to buy in Alabama or buy in Mississippi and you buy a catastrophic plan with a medium deductible and you're young and you have a heart attack or God forbid cancer or a bad accident, you'll be covered. But you don't need the care that an elderly person would and they're also being covered on the back end, right, through Medicaid and Medicare.

FLEISCHER: And you had all kinds of other benefits that were mandatory that people didn't need that was part of their premiums, which is why they're so expensive and their deductibles were so high.

Look, so much of it didn't work, Sean, because it was all moving in the direction of government control as opposed to what we always knows works, which is competition and much more free market. And what I think Donald Trump campaign bring to Washington is so needed from the outsider's perspective is that business sensibility about things that work and things that don't.

And when you always say, What can the government do first to do first to have a government run it, it won't work. When you say, What can be done to maximize the efficiencies of the private sector and deliver a quality product, that's what a private sector leader can do, and that's the Republican task now in Congress, is to follow it up and do that.

HANNITY: All right, by the way, I'm going to say goodbye to Ari...

GOOLSBEE: You guys better hope that he can do it.

HANNITY: Hang on a second. But Ari's got to leave, and he's a good friend and I'm -- it was my fault that was late a little earlier tonight. Ari, we appreciate it. Say -- send our best to you daughter.

Let me -- let me ask Austan this quick question. What did I possibly say that was nice about you? And was it a night that I was drinking? Was it New Year's Eve? What did I say?

(LAUGHTER)

GOOLSBEE: I don't know. You were drinking or something! You said that I was one of your favorites.

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: You should used believe in the free market more.

GOOLSBEE: I got a football from you that says -- I got a football from you that you signed and it says I'm a great American. I'm never giving that thing away!

HANNITY: OK. Yes, it's worth a fortune. Of course. But the reality -- why don't you -- look, you've got to understand there's not one economic statistic you can point which (ph) say we're better off. Millions more in poverty, on food stamps, lowest home ownership rate in 51 years, doubling...

GOOLSBEE: Sean...

HANNITY: ... of the national debt!

GOOLSBEE: I can give you one. You said I can't -- I'll name one.

HANNITY: What?

FLEISCHER: Longest string of private sector job growth in the history of United States.

HANNITY: All right, but...

COHEN: I don't even know again...

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: ... you extrapolate out one particular section and forget the rest of it, I can make anything look good.

COHEN: I mean, it just doesn't make any sense -- look, Donald Trump is the world's greatest deal maker. He's going to come in again with this "Obama care." It's -- he's going to be disruptive. He's going to bring in competition. Competition is going to lower the cost for everybody. You're not going to see these skyrocketing premiums. He knows what to do...

(CROSSTALK)

GOOLSBEE: I want that to be true. I'm not -- I'm not out to get...

HANNITY: Of course we...

(CROSSTALK)

COHEN: Who wouldn't want it to be true?

(CROSSTALK)

COHEN: ... everybody wants to see America...

HANNITY: So repeat after me.

COHEN: ... become great!

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: Austan, you want Trump to succeed where Obama failed.

GOOLSBEE: My point is this. Look, my point is this. Donald Trump, you remember, Sean, he came on the show during the campaign. And you asked him, What are you going to replace "Obama care" with? And his answer was, Something fabulous.

(CROSSTALK)

COHEN: Tell me, why are you expecting him to do this now? He's going to do it when he takes office! They're working on it. You don't even want to give the man a chance...

(CROSSTALK)

GOOLSBEE: I want to give him a chance, but...

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: He also said health savings accounts.

GOOLSBEE: Then give him the chance!

HANNITY: All right, guys. Good to see you both.

When we come back, President-elect Trump -- he promised to drain the swamp, and now this week, Texas senator Ted Cruz -- he introduced a constitutional amendment to impose term limits on lawmakers. Senator Cruz joins us next to explain.

And then later tonight...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ASSANGE: (INAUDIBLE) media in the United States felt that it was part of the same system. So Hillary Clinton was part of it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Part three of my never before seen exclusive interview with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Tonight, he'll help explain why he does what he does.

Plus, a disturbing beating was broadcast on Facebook Live. Four African- Americans have been charged with a hate crime for brutally beating a white man with special needs. We'll get reaction from Michelle Malkin and more straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: And welcome back to "Hannity." So one of President-elect Donald Trump's campaign promises was to drain the swamp in Washington. So earlier this week, former 2016 presidential candidate Texas senator Ted Cruz -- he introduced an amendment that would implement term limits for lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

In a statement, Ted Cruz said, quote, "D.C. is broken. The American people resoundingly agreed on election day and President-elect Trump has committed to putting government back to work for the American people. It's well past time to put an end to the cronyism and decent that has transformed Washington into a graveyard of good intentions." What a powerful statement.

Joining us now to explain is the man himself, Texas Senator Ted Cruz. Senator, always good to see you. Welcome back, sir.

SEN. TED CRUZ, R-TEXAS: Thank you, Sean. Great to be with you. Happy New Year.

HANNITY: Happy New Year to you, too. I've always aid about term limits, it's a good idea -- it's a bad idea whose time has come. It really would I think put politicians on track to do not what is in their best interest but to serve the people, which is not been happening in recent years, and I think you would agree, Republican, Democrat, it's gotten pretty bad.

CRUZ: Sean, that's exactly right. The American people overwhelmingly support term limits. And that's on a bipartisan basis. And the reason is simple. They recognize Washington is broken, that it's far too easy for people to come to Washington and become career politicians and get corrupted by the system where the special interests, the lobbyists begin supporting them. They stay there forever.

When the framers designed the constitution, they envisioned citizen legislators who would leave their job for a period of time, leave their businesses, their farms, come to Washington, serve the nation, and then go back. And we don't have that arrangement today. And so it's my hope that one of the first things we will see Republican majorities in both houses do is take up a constitutional amendment providing term limits, to two terms for senators, three terms for members of the House. And president-elect Trump campaign on that. It's one of the most effective ways to end the corruption in Washington and drain the swamp.

HANNITY: You know, you are one of just the few people that was willing to use your constitutional authority, the power of the purse, as it relates to Obamacare. It's now an item one agenda for the Trump administration. And you actually said yesterday that I'm really impressed with president-elect Trump. And I know, by the way, politics is a blood sport. It was very contentious with you guys at certain point, but you did keep your promise. You came around. You supported him, and probably you more than any candidate had the most contentious exchanges with him. Others didn't. That's an important aspect to remember. But do you feel that he can get these things done where the Republicans were not willing to fight in the past?

CRUZ: I certainly hope so. It was a vigorous primary but Donald Trump won the primary, and I'm very glad to say he won the general election. I was happy to campaign, supporting --

HANNITY: You were in Wisconsin. You were in Michigan with Mike Pence.

CRUZ: Yes. We went on the road with them, did everything we could to turn out conservatives. And that's what we saw. What we saw on Election Day was an incredible mandate for change. It was the American people saying enough is enough. They are fed up.

And Sean, I've got to tell you, I am really optimistic right now. I'm excited because we've been given an historic opportunity. It's something that doesn't happen very often, which is we've been given control of the White House, of every executive branch, of both houses of Congress. And what I think is critical now is that we actually deliver, that we do what we promised.

And I have been very, very encouraged by the cabinet appointments that president-elect Trump has put forward. This is an all-star team. These are strong conservatives. I just met a few minutes ago with General Mattis, spent about an hour with him. You want to talk about a serious, clear-eyed leader willing to stand up to radical Islamic terrorism, not bound by the political correctness, the willful blindness of the last eight years, talk about something we desperately need. I couldn't be more encouraged.

HANNITY: Even thought I know you guys became very adversarial during the primary, I actually believe that you could be a very powerful team, especially on Obamacare, defeating radical Islam, border security, repealing and replacing Obamacare, the Supreme Court, which I thought was the number one issue in this campaign. I think this could be a powerful alliance that maybe nobody predicted at the time.

One thing else that I am really thankful that you came out and said Congress must cut taxpayer funding of the U.N. for the disgraceful anti- Israeli resolution that the Obama administration, they could have vetoed and they didn't and they may have even colluded on it.

CRUZ: That's exactly right. If you look at the last several weeks, but the Obama administration has done, it's been shameful. Really their true colors are coming out where on the way out they struck out at Israel in a way that is hateful and profoundly damaging.

The U.N. resolution that passed with Barack Obama and John Kerry's active acquiescence, if not their encouragement, is profoundly anti-Israel. It is absurd. It actually declares much of Israel to be illegal and illegitimate. It declares the Temple Mount, the holiest place in Jerusalem for Jews, to be not legitimately part of Israel. It declares the Western Wall, where Jews from all over the world go to pray, to be illegal and not part of Israel.

And for decades the United States has stood as an ally of Israel at the United Nations against anti-Semitism, and I think Barack Obama did this because he wanted to secure his legacy. And I've got to tell you, Sean, I think he has. I think history is going to record Barack Obama and John Kerry as relentless enemies of Israel.

HANNITY: You know what's funny, senator, we talk about influencing elections. This president spent taxpayer money from the State Department to incent his political operatives to help defeat Prime Minister Netanyahu.

CRUZ: That is exactly right. The antipathy from this administration to Israel and to its elected leader Prime Minister Netanyahu is astonishing. And I spoke with Prime Minister Netanyahu a little over a week ago. And I shared with him despite this disgraceful action in the U.N., the American people stand unshakably with the people of Israel. And I am joining with my colleague Lindsay Graham -- Lindsay and I disagree on a lot of issue, but on this issue we are on the same page. We are joining together, introducing legislation --

HANNITY: Good luck with that one. He's not exactly my favorite senator, by the way. You are in the butter category. But anyway, senator, good to see you.

CRUZ: We are going to cut off funding to the U.N. unless and until they reverse this resolution.

HANNITY: Do you know if the president-elect supports that? I would love to see him support that.

CRUZ: I'll tell you, we are working very, very closely with the president- elect and the transition team. Every day we're working closely with them.

HANNITY: That's really good news. All right, senator, thank you, good to see you.

CRUZ: Thank you, Sean.

HANNITY: And up next tonight right here on "Hannity."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JULIAN ASSANGE, FOUNDER, WIKILEAKS: Why are we interested in publishing information about power? Because people can do things with power, they can do very bad things with power. If they are incompetent, they can do dangerous things.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: More of my exclusive unaired interview with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

And then later, four African-Americans charged with a hate crime for the brutal beating of a white man with special needs. They literally forced him to drink toilet water and cut off his clothing and his scalp and yelled anti-Donald Trump and anti-white slurs. That disturbing tape and much more reaction from Michelle Malkin straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: Welcome back to "Hannity." So during my exclusive interview with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange earlier this week, I asked him if he believes that governments are honest to you, the American people, and elsewhere around the world? This previously un-aired portion of the interview is right here.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HANNITY: Do you believe that their governments that regularly lie, propagandize, manipulate the minds of their citizens?

ASSANGE: Yes, very much.

HANNITY: And you want to expose that truth to people?

ASSANGE: Yes.

HANNITY: Regardless of whether it's Republican or Democrat, no political agenda.

ASSANGE: Absolutely, absolutely.

HANNITY: And that question then goes back to the fourth estate. This is the biggest media story. Why won't will the media do it? If I have information that Hillary Clinton is colluding with the media, that Hillary Clinton is benefiting --

ASSANGE: Why won't the media do it? You just answered the question. Why won't the media, because four-fifths of the media many in the United States felt that it was part of the same system, that Hillary Clinton was part of the same social strata, benefiting politically and socially and financially from that system that Hillary Clinton most represented.

HANNITY: Let me ask this question, you are taking on the big, the mighty, the powerful. I don't sense a political agenda because you're telling if it was Donald Trump's emails you would've released those.

ASSANGE: We did release Sarah Palin's emails. We released Norm Coleman's information back in 2009.

HANNITY: So my question then is, so you really don't have an agenda except to tell the truth that with regularity bureaucracy, government entities lie and prevent the people they represent from hearing the truth. A fair statement?

ASSANGE: Yes. Not only lie and act in a duplicitous manner and do things that are harmful to the population inside the country and up, but they act in an incompetent manner. They are full of incompetent people. And the more secretive the area is the more incompetent it become because there is no proper oversight. You can't go this guy did a good job. This guy did a bad job, because you can't compare.

HANNITY: You are saying transparency will lead to competence.

ASSANGE: Exactly.

HANNITY: And government don't by their very nature --

ASSANGE: They hate transparency. They loathe it because they have to work harder.

HANNITY: But this is also -- let me ask this question. This is an evil world we live in. We live in a world where convert or die, Allahu Akbar, kill in the name of Allah, you do believe government should have secrets, covert operations, plausible deniability. You're never going to be able to hold them accountable to that.

ASSANGE: WikiLeaks has secrets. We protect our sources. OK, so that's a core area of competency that we have to keep information secret. Investigating the mafia, the police have to keep their investigations secret. All the time it takes them to get to trial. Not forever. The time it takes to get to trial. Sometimes your doctor, for example, maybe there's a reason to keep something secret there. So secrecy should be as small as possible in how much it encompasses and for how long it is encompassed. But there's a place for it.

HANNITY: You never set out to have a goal to influence this election. That was not your goal, you are saying.

ASSANGE: Not one way or the other. Did we set out to give the American people true information about the players that they were going to have to deal with? Yes, of course.

HANNITY: What do you think --

ASSANGE: You know, we don't publish -- we are not in the business of publishing stuff about fluff. We are in the business of publishing things about power. Why are we interested in publishing information about power? Because people can things with power. They can do very bad things with power. If they are incompetent things they can do dangerous things. If they're evil they can do wicked things.

So we are interested in publishing information about power so those people have to deal with power, all of us, can go, OK, well, I don't like that guy. I'm not going to deal with him. I'm not going to vote for him. Or, that guy sounds all right. Maybe I want a business relationship with him. Maybe he should marry my sister.

If you don't know what is happening in the world with the powerful individuals, corporations, and governments, you can't decide whether you're going to support them or not support them, get into some kind of relationship with them or not. And as a result, immoral actors within the state or within those big corporations prosper. If you have true information coming out about how people actually behave, what's the result? The rest of society goes, you know what, I don't want to deal with you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HANNITY: And coming up, a disgusting, a brutal assault was broadcasted on Facebook live by four attackers. They were African-American and all have now been charged with hate crime. The attackers, they shouted anti-Trump remarks as they tortured a man with special needs. Michelle Malkin is here with reaction. That's straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: Welcome back to "Hannity." It is the disturbing story everybody is talking about. Four African-Americans from Chicago area have been charged with a hate crime as well as a variety of other offences after kidnapping a special-needs white man, torturing him with a knife, and even making him drink water from a toilet, all while ranting about white people and president-elect Donald Trump.

According to authorities this ordeal lasted for hours and the attackers even broadcasted a portion of their brutal assault on Facebook Live. Before we air this, we've got to warn you. This video we are about to show you is extremely disturbing. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- Donald Trump -- white people.

(LAUGHTER)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This my friend.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: All right, joining us now with reaction, syndicated columnist, host of the series "Michelle Malkin Investigates," it's on CRTV.com, our friend Michelle Malkin. I don't even -- I understand kids and pranks. I was a bit of an incorrigible child myself. I don't understand the evil, the outright evil. They were literally taking this kids scalp with a knife, forcing him and beating him. I don't understand this kind of evil. I don't know where it comes from, how this evolves. What is your reaction to it?

MICHELLE MALKIN, "MICHELLE MALKIN INVESTIGATES" HOST: Sean, I think that every parent in America, particularly parents of special needs kids, has to be outraged and disgusted by what was broadcast on Facebook. And the ways in which social media now is spreading this kind of violent poison, it is alarming. And the atrocity, the brutality that occurred, what was depicted in this video is compounded by the callous reaction of so many people on the left and in the media where some crimes are more equal than others. And where this agenda driven journalism has been exposed so nakedly, Sean. The ways of which the racial aspect of this crime has been covered up by so many leftists --

HANNITY: Yes, they had a hard time reaching the fact that this was a racial hate crime. But here's another part of the equation that we've got to talk about. We've dealt with this a little bit on the program last night. Nearly 800 killed in Chicago this year alone. Since Obama has been president nearly 5,000 killed, 4,000 shot this year.

MALKIN: Well, because Chicago is the poster child of the violent and sick hellhole of progressivism. And it lies squarely at the feet of the likes of Rahm Emanuel, the Democratic daily machine and, yes, President Obama and his wife themselves who come from Chicago. I've talked many times with you, Sean, over the years about the progressive climate of hate, whether it is the hate that's been fermented by CAIR and Black Lives Matter and Sothern Poverty Law Center which gets to define what hate crimes are, and where they falsely accuse the right. It is always blame right people.

Liberals, you know what, liberal ignore racism within their own ranks. They make it up when it doesn't exist. And they manufacture it for their own political gain. Shame on them.

HANNITY: Fake hate crimes versus real hate crimes. Great point. Michelle, by the way, happy New York, and we are really glad you're back on the show. Good to see you. Congrats on your new gig.

MALKIN: Thank you, Sean.

HANNITY: I appreciate it. Coming up, we need your help, a very important, very important "Question of the Day," and we always love your input, straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: Are time for our "Question of the Day." So do you think the Democrats, as I do, are playing politics over this election so-called hacking issue? Look at my "Opening Monologue." Go to Facebook.com/SeanHannity, @SeanHannity on Twitter, let us know what you think.

Unfortunately, that is all the time we have left this evening. And we'll see you back here tomorrow night.

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