Michael Cohen: I will remain the personal attorney to Trump; Omarosa: Hollywood has no impact on the will of the people

Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer and Trump Organization attorney Michael Cohen weigh in on 'Hannity'


This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," January 18, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: And welcome to "Hannity."  So President Obama is leaving office the same way he came in, as a rigid and divisive, radical ideologue who will stop at nothing to undermine his political opponents.  And that is tonight's "Opening Monologue."

All right, so earlier today, in his final press conference, President Obama showed that he's not going away and even took a few shots at President-elect Donald Trump. Watch this.


PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: I have enjoyed working with all of you. That does not, of course, mean that I've enjoyed every story that you have filed, but that's the point of this relationship. You're not supposed to be sycophants, you're supposed to be skeptics. You're supposed to ask me tough questions.

But as I said before, I'm still a citizen. And I think it is important for Democrats or progressives who feel that they came out on the wrong side of this election to be able to distinguish between the normal back and forth, ebb and flow of policy.

There's a difference between the normal functioning of politics and certain issues or certain moments where I think our core values may be at stake.


HANNITY: All right, pretty disrespectful. Instead of following the example of President George W. Bush, the one he set when he left office, President Obama has done the complete opposite.

Now, let me show you exactly what I mean. Before and during Obama's presidency, I interviewed President Bush several times and asked him to comment on President Obama.  Well, much to my chagrin, he refused. Watch this.


HANNITY, JAN. 12, 2009: You've gotten to spend a little time with him.

THEN-PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: Yes. He's a -- he's a smart, capable person who has -- you know, he's got a presence about him. And he's listened to -- he's asked me good questions and listened.

HANNITY, NOV. 9, 2010: You made a decision not to attack President Obama.

G. BUSH: It's not just President Obama. I suspect I'll have that same point of view for whoever follows him.

HANNITY, NOV. 25, 2010: You just do not want to weigh in on current affairs. Why?

G. BUSH: Because, first of all, I'm trying to regain a sense of anonymity, which I know is impossible, but nevertheless, it's worth the effort.  Secondly, I don't think it's good for the country to have a former president criticizing his successor.

HANNITY, NOV. 13, 2014: I'm sure you have a lot to say. You're not -- you -- you're -- we talked politics before you came in here. You are very engaged and aware of what's going on.

G. BUSH: Yes. I'm very aware of what's going on. I don't think it's good for the country to have a former president undermine a current president.  I think it's bad for the presidency, for that matter.

HANNITY, FEB. 15, 2016: He'll tell you privately how he feels about President Obama, right? Because he won't tell me.



HANNITY: That's really good message -- that's probably the highest form of it, right?

G. BUSH: Why don't you tell people why. And the reason why...

HANNITY: Because you respect the office.

BUSH: I do. And I think the office is more important than the occupant.


HANNITY: You see that, even with bad haircuts? I practically begged President Bush to go after President Obama and call out his many failed policies. He wouldn't do it. President Obama, on the other hand, had no problem completely trashing with regularity President Bush. You may remember this during the 2008 campaign. Take a look.


OBAMA, MAY 14, 2008: The American people have a choice this November. It's going to be a clear choice between four more years of the same failed Bush policies that have wrecked Michigan's economy, or real change.

OBAMA, MAY 16, 2008: I believe that there is no separation between John McCain and George Bush when it comes to our Middle East policy. And I think their policy has failed.

OBAMA, JULY 3, 2008: The way Bush has done it over the last eight years is to take out a credit card from the bank of China in the name of our children, driving up our national debt. That's irresponsible! It's unpatriotic.

OBAMA, OCT. 26, 2008: At this rate, the question isn't just are you better off than you were four years ago. The question is are you better off than you were four weeks ago?

For eight years, we've seen the Bush-McCain philosophy put our country on the wrong track. We can't have another four years that looks just like the last eight.


HANNITY: And he kept blaming President Bush the entire time he's been in office. Look at this.


OBAMA, AUG. 3, 2011: We were inheriting so many challenges.

We knew this was going to take time because we got this big, messy, tough democracy.

OBAMA, FEB. 1, 2010: The previous administration and previous Congresses created an expensive new drug program, passed massive tax cuts for the wealthy and funded two wars without paying for any of it.

If we had taken office during ordinary times, we would have started bringing down these deficits immediately.

OBAMA, MARCH 4, 2009: These are far from the best of times. By any measure, my administration inherited a fiscal disaster.


HANNITY: He's still blaming Bush.

By the way, now let's talk about President Obama's treatment of President-elect Donald Trump. He spent the entire year of 2016 trashing the Republican nominee. Watch this.


OBAMA, NOV. 7, 2016: Donald Trump is temperamentally unfit to be commander-in-chief.  

You know, it's bad enough being arrogant, it's bad being arrogant and not knowing anything.

OBAMA, NOV. 6, 2016: If you disrespect women before you became president, you'll do so once you're president. If you accept the support of Klan sympathizers before you're president, then you'll accept their support after you're president.

OBAMA, NOV. 4, 2016: I can honestly say to myself that if we, as Democrats, had nominated somebody who said the things Mr. Trump said, then I'd have to say, I'm sorry, yes, I'm a Democrat, but I'm an American first.


HANNITY: Now, President Obama savagely attacked President-elect Donald Trump because he knew if a Republican won, his legacy would be nonexistent!  And President Obama refused to compromise even a little bit on his leftist ideology. He refused to work with the Republicans in Congress, and instead he relied mostly on executive orders and actions and discretion to unilaterally dictate federal law.

And now that Donald Trump won, President Obama is realizing his legacy could all be gone by the stroke of a pen as soon as Donald Trump takes office.

Now, take a look at the major Obama executive branch policies that Trump can overturn. For example, on immigration, Trump can easily undo Obama's deferred action for childhood arrivals executive order, which basically granted amnesty to over one million illegal immigrant, quote, "Dreamers."  

Now, Trump can put an end to catch and release, that policy that lets criminal illegal aliens roam free in our country, or sanctuary cities.  Now, President Trump can push back on states and cities that refuse to cooperate and enforce federal law.

On refugees, President Trump can stop thousands of people from countries with ties to terror from ever entering the country.

The Iranian nuclear deal? Remember, he didn't go to the Senate. The Trump administration can take steps to get out of that agreement with the number one state sponsor of terrorism.

And climate change regulations like the EPA's Clean Power Plan and the Paris climate agreement can easily go bye-bye.

Well, then you go over to Congress and then you throw in repealing, replacing ObamaCare and getting rid of Dodd-Frank and financial regulations.

Now, think about this. After that, the only thing that is going to be left is President Obama's real legacy, which we've pointed out many times is an utter failure, on the economy, on foreign policy. And unfortunately, this part will be much harder for President-elect Trump to get rid of.

Now, the other part of Obama's real failed legacy is that he refused to change. He was so stubborn! He never came close to having a Sister Souljah moment like Bill Clinton did. Remember when he said the era of big government is over, the end of welfare as we know it? You may remember this.


THEN-PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON: We know big government does not have all the answers. We know there's not a program for every problem.


CLINTON: We know and we have work to give the American people a smaller, less bureaucratic government in Washington. And we have to give the American people one that lives within its means.


CLINTON: The era of big government is over.



HANNITY: Bill Clinton adjusted, was pragmatic. He ended up working with Newt Gingrich. They balanced the budget. This president has never adjusted to reality.

President Obama, he has been stuck in his predisposed leftist indoctrinated ideology, this indoctrination by communist Frank Marshall Davis. Mr. President, he never broke away from Saul Alinsky and the rule for radical tactics. He never got away from the Reverend Jeremiah Wright and the church of G-D America. He never separated himself from the unrepentant domestic terrorists Bill Ayers, Bernadine Dohrn.

So in the end, President Obama, you accomplished pretty much nothing. And after 100 days of Donald Trump being president, it's going to be like you were never there, except for the debt you left us, doubling the debt, and of course, the judges the liberal activist judges you appointed.

So let me offer President Obama, who's outgoing now, some advice. Show a little bit of class. And try and be quiet for once! You had your chance.  Learn from George W. Bush. Sadly, you didn't get the job done. That's your legacy.

Here now with reaction, from the Trump organization, Michael Cohen, former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer.

Ari, I really tried to get President Bush to go after Barack Obama. I tried hard. He wouldn't do it. I don't expect this will be the same example that Barack Obama will follow. Do you agree?

ARI FLEISCHER, FMR. WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Not even close. You know, let me give you a little insight on that. I've talked to former president Bush about this a lot myself. I remember when President Bush was in Japan, and in Japan, they have a system where the former prime ministers mostly go into the parliament.

And Bush was talking to me about it and he said, How on earth can you be president when all your predecessors are in the parliament speaking out against you? He was already thinking about that when he was a sitting president.

And it is good for the country. The job is a hard job and the graciousness that a former president extends to their successor and his successors -- successor makes us a strong country. Congress's job is to fight with the president. Former presidents jobs are to fade into the sunset and do so gracefully. Their day has come. They had their chance.

As you pointed out, Sean, much of what President Obama has done is going to be erased because of the election. The American people spoke. And now it's time for somebody else to do it. And it's time for somebody else, frankly, to with grace...

HANNITY: And it's also...

BUSH: ... fade into the sunset.

HANNITY: And it's also the way he governed. He didn't want to do the hard work of working with Congress. So he ruled by executive fiat, but that can be easily overturned.

Michael, what you expect from President Obama when he leaves office? I expect more of the same.

MICHAEL COHEN, TRUMP ORGANIZATION: Look -- look -- look, Sean, here -- here's the thing. It doesn't really matter anymore. In two days, Donald Trump will become the 45th president. He's going to do everything that he promised during the campaign that he would do for the American people.  He's already shown what he's going to do by keeping jobs in America, putting America first and making America great again.

He's just going to live up to his promises, which is really unlike, unfortunately, where we've been for the past eight years. Sad that the only thing that will ultimately be remembered under the Obama legacy is I think that bronze sculpture that was just commissioned.

HANNITY: I think that, and bringing back Winston -- the bust of Winston Churchill, which I hear is coming back, as well. Michael, a lot of people have asked me because they know we've been friends a long time, why isn't Michael going with the president-elect? Have you decided to take on a new role?

COHEN: You know, I get that -- look, I get that question a lot. I'm obviously very loyal and very dedicated to Mr. Trump. I think he's going to be not just a good president, I think he's going to be a great president. He's going to be the president that ends up working with everybody, whether Republican or Democrat, including those Democrats that are choosing not to come. And the truth is, he doesn't care.

As far as me, I spoke yesterday to Mr. Trump. You'll be the first one to know, Sean -- you and of course all your viewers -- I'm going to be the personal attorney to Mr. Trump. I'm not going to be in government, but I'm going to remain technically in the same role for Mr. Trump, for President Trump, as I was when he was president of the Trump Organization.

HANNITY: So can I assume that in that role, not being a government role, that you'd have attorney-client privilege with President Trump?

COHEN: Yes, of course. And that relationship, hopefully, will last, you know, for -- not four years, but eight years. I think he's a wonderful man. I think he's going to be an amazing president. The family is just, you know, fantastic. They're behind him 100 percent. He's going to have Jared and Ivanka there, you know...

HANNITY: Well, we made some news here.

COHEN: ... to speak to him on -- that's right, on a day-to-day basis. But I will be in D.C. and in New York. Anywhere Mr. Trump...

HANNITY: All right, let me ask Ari this question...

COHEN: ... deems necessary, I'll be there.

HANNITY: Ari, I know you're going to disagree with me because I know you.  You know, I look at a hostile news media, and we know that they colluded with the Hillary campaign. And I know there's been talk of maybe moving them out of the White House press office, inside -- that's prime real estate there -- and moving them to another location or including talk radio hosts or bloggers, or you know, other news sources. Why do I sense that you might be against all of that?

FLEISCHER: I have no problem with moving the press temporarily out of the briefing room into larger...

HANNITY: Temporarily? How about forever?

FLEISCHER: ... quarters. For the -- well, for the briefing itself, and the reason for that is because Donald Trump's going to have so many reporters show up, they can't fit into that briefing room. There's 49 seats. Way more than that are going to show up.

When it comes to the work space of the White House, Sean, if I were Donald Trump, I would think about it this way. He's got the upper hand over the press right now because the press is so unpopular. And as Gallup has shown, their poll shows popularity of the press has never been so low because the public doesn't think they're accurate or they report the news accurately or fairly.

If Donald Trump physically removes them from the West Wing cubicles, the little office space they occupy, he will turn them into David instead of Goliath. He will flip the leverage that he has over the press corps right now. He will create a backlash where the public, frankly, that is against the press will switch and be in favor of the press.

HANNITY: Thank you both.

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


OBAMA: First of all, let's be clear. Chelsea Manning has served a tough prison sentence.


HANNITY: President Obama standing by his decision to commute Chelsea Manning's sentence. Up next, we'll get reaction from Dr. Sebastian Gorka.

Also, Laura Ingraham is here tonight to weigh in on liberals boycotting Trump's inauguration.

All of that and "Special Report's" Bret Baier in studio straight ahead.



HANNITY: And welcome back to "Hannity." So earlier today, President Obama defended his decision to commute the sentence of former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning, who was sentenced to 35 years in prison for leaking documents that WikiLeaks and others published. Watch this.


OBAMA: Well, first of all, let's be clear. Chelsea Manning has served a tough prison sentence. So the notion that the average person who was thinking about disclosing vital classified information would think that it goes unpunished I don't think would get that impression from the sentence that Chelsea Manning has served.


HANNITY: So while Obama stands by his controversial decision, a senior defense official tells FOX News that defense secretary Ash Carter and some top Army leaders were against commuting Manning's sentence and told this to the president. FOX News has also learned that Manning leaked 700,000-plus documents and that his actions may have accelerated the Arab spring and may have contributed to the rise of ISIS.

Now, this is so controversial that even some Democratic senators are very concerned. Take a look.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to give a green light to people basically with all the hacking going on and all the cyberattacks we got going on?  My goodness, you've got Snowden out there and you got Assange. You got all these people. It's just wrong.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have serious concerns about equivocating sentence when national security is at stake.


HANNITY: And joining us now with reaction, the author of "Defeating Jihad," Fox News contributor Dr. Sebastian Gorka is with. Dr. Gorka, 750,000 documents may have also added to the Arab spring and the rise of ISIS. I know there's been a lot said about WikiLeaks, but this is the person that stole the documents.

SEBASTIAN GORKA, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Right. Sean, this measure has rewarded a traitor. If we can demonstrate that these documents, more than a million pages, led to the deaths of people in our allied nations or our partner nations or helped to facilitate the rise of ISIS, that is absolutely reprehensible that Bradley Manning gets a commuted sentence.

What is the message we are sending to the world, that actions have no consequences? And if you have a clearance, this is the thing you can do and you'll get a slap on the wrist? It is unbelievable that ideology once again has trumped national security in this White House, Sean.

HANNITY: You know, Obama made a U-turn by commuting his sentence. Let me go back and look at, for example, a Supreme Court decision, the issue of the Pentagon papers, and -- 47-volume top secret study, U.S. involvement in Southeast Asia commissioned by then the Department of Defense secretary Bob McNamara.

And then The New York Times began publishing articles based on the Pentagon papers. Then the Supreme Court weighed in and said that the Constitution guarantees a free press and that overrides other considerations. So it's really not about the people that publish it, it's about the people that steal it and leak it, right?

GORKA: Absolutely. Yes. Once it's in public domain, you or I can't be punished for reading it or forwarding it. It is the act of the individual like Bradley Manning, like Ed Snowden, who actually take that classified information off the secure server off the secure system...

HANNITY: So Daniel Ellsberg...

GORKA: ... and then -- yes?

HANNITY: So Daniel Ellsberg, the guy that was responsible for giving these papers to The New York Times -- he, in fact, was convicted, indicted on charges of espionage, theft, conspiracy, correct? So does that impact...

GORKA: Absolutely.

HANNITY: ... The New York Times, WikiLeaks, the people that published this information?

GORKA: Well, it should. I mean, absolutely. There's a -- but look, there's the question, the technical question of you have a clearance, you have sworn to protect that information and you go against that. So that's just a legal issue. You should serve the time that has been sentenced to you.

There's the other issue, which is what damage does it do to America? What does it do to our friends, our allies? What is the cost? Every time this happens, the FBI, the DOJ, the given agency has to do an impact assessment.  What has this meant for the safety of Americans? And with a million pages- plus, it's horrific to consider what this man was responsible for.

HANNITY: Last question. I know we've got to balance liberty, freedom, freedom of the press, the right of the people in this country to know -- do you think our government under the Obama years has been too secretive?

GORKA: Great question. The mainstream media has basically facilitated a secret war. Think about how many drone strikes -- Obama has used more in the first year of his presidency than George W. Bush did in his two terms!  But who reports about it? Who reports about the fact that we're bombing at one time six nations. Nobody reports about it.

And Sean, do you remember Gulf one? Do you remember the second Gulf war?  Do you remember the embedded journalist? We have journalists right there on the front line with all the units. What happened to the embedded journalists? Why don't they want to report about what Obama is doing?

HANNITY: All right, Dr. Gorka, always good to see you, sir. Thank you.

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


TRUMP: Many of the celebrities that are saying they're not going, they were never invited. I don't want the celebrities, I want the people.


HANNITY: President-elect Donald Trump tells Ainsley Earhardt that he doesn't care that celebrities are skipping his inauguration. Now, this as the list of Democratic lawmakers boycotting Friday's events continues to grow. Up next, we get reaction from Laura Ingraham.

And then later, "Special Report"' Bret Baier is here with us.

That's straight ahead.



TRUMP: Many of the celebrities that are saying they're not going, they were never invited. I don't want the celebrities, I want the people.


HANNITY: That was President-elect Donald Trump addressing the Hollywood snowflakes who are boycotting his inauguration. But there's more. Over 60 Democratic members of Congress are not attending, either. Earlier today, President Obama -- he was asked about the dozens of lawmakers who are refusing to attend Friday's events. Take a look.


OBAMA: With respect to the inauguration, I'm not going to comment on those issues. All I know is I'm going to be there. So is Michelle. And I have been checking the weather and I'm heartened by the fact that it won't be as cold as my first inauguration.


HANNITY: All right, joining us now with reaction, editor-in-chief of Lifezette, Fox News contributor, nationally syndicated radio host, potential Senate candidate from the commonwealth of Virginia -- I'm pushing this, by the way. I'm your first...


HANNITY: I'm your first official endorser.

INGRAHAM: I love it.

HANNITY: Imagine if this happened eight years ago.

INGRAHAM: Oh, my gosh.

HANNITY: What would have...

INGRAHAM: That would -- Sean, if this happened eight years ago, the conservative protesters who weren't participating would be called un-American, disrespectful, attempting to delegitimize the first African- American president. You could say this is the first nonpolitical president we've had in a long time, the first businessman of his nature to be president. It's historic in its own way. It was a surprise victory to a lot of people. It caught the pundit class by storm and by surprise.

And so there's so much to be celebrated by this -- about this inauguration.  And yet the press is spending all this time focusing on the march for women or the protesters who are banging the garbage cans outside of the Trump international hotel. But if it were the other way around, the protesters would be demonized and themselves delegitimized by the press.

HANNITY: Remember the way the characterized Tea Party members? This is coming from the top of the Democrat Party. Senator Schumer, the leaders of the Democrats in the Senate, saying he respects boycotters. And by the way, Russia interfered with the election. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, not to be outdone, exact same talking point. Maxine Waters, exact same talking point. So in spite of no evidence that shows this election was impacted in any way they continue to try and I guess delegitimize Trump. Does it have any impact?

INGRAHAM: I don't get does it all. I think it's unfortunate for them.  They're not creating a single job or helping a single minority in the inner city with this action. They are probably raising a little bit of money off of it, Sean. And going back to that press conference that Obama had today, his final press conference, he referenced the organizing and the activism a number of times. This battle goes on. And he referenced, we haven't won all the battles. He mentioned the battle for transgender rights and other points about income inequality. So he was calling everybody to a greater sense of activism on the left as he of course is going to attend, as one would expect, the inauguration himself.

HANNITY: Assuming that Donald Trump is going to keep his promises, I see everything is going to be a fight. The Supreme Court nominee, fight.  Reducing the corporate tax rate, repatriation tax lowered to 10 percent to bring money, jobs to America, that's going to be a fight. Building the wall, fight. Vetting refugees, fight. Repealing Obamacare, we saw Tom Price today, fight. Education back to the states, fight.

INGRAHAM: Oh, big time.

HANNITY: Do you think or have confidence in the Republican Congress to stand by the Trump agenda? Because I'm not sure I do.

INGRAHAM: I think your instincts here are right. I think we saw a little bit of that with Rubio on the Tillerson questioning. But you've heard hints of this with Paul Ryan, even though I think he does want to work with the president on a number of points. There are interesting things going on with the budget reconciliation. I know it sounds boring to people, but what president-elect Trump and his team can do on the edges of budget reconciliation, they could miss a big opportunity if they don't play that right. Paul Ryan understands what you can do with the reconciliation process. And I hope the Trump team understands just how much they can accomplish just by using that mechanism. So they've got to be very careful and very wily with how they deal with the Republican leadership on Capitol Hill.

HANNITY: So Trump will have the Republican establishment, Democratic establishment, media establishment against him. Do they eventually get him?

INGRAHAM: I think he's going to have an uphill battle on some of these fights, Sean, but I think he has the people with him on key issues, on the trade agreement. On the issue of bringing jobs back to the United States, even on some of the questions of punishing other countries who are blatantly cheating on trade agreement, he has a people on a side on that.  So he should stand firm and do it with a smile and sell this economic populism coast to coast as he did in the campaign. If he stays in that campaign mode while he is governing, you have to keep selling it. You can't lose the confidence of the people on these issues. If he does that, I think there is going to be enormous pressure on the phone banks and the emails to get these Republican leaders especially in line.

HANNITY: All right, Laura, are you going to the ball?

INGRAHAM: Sean, I heard you weren't going.

HANNITY: I'm on 10:00 to 12:00. They are making we wear a dopey tux to this stupid thing.

INGRAHAM: Are you going to wear that powderered blue one I saw you in?


INGRAHAM: You had a mullet.


INGRAHAM: You need that mullet behind you.

HANNITY: I am not wearing a dopey bow tie either. I would rather wear jeans and boots.

INGRAHAM: You should wear boots and jeans and just a black tie. It would look cool.

HANNITY: Exactly.

INGRAHAM: All right, see you, Sean.

HANNITY: Up next tonight right here on "Hannity."


PRESIDENT-ELECT DONALD TRUMP: The first line is thanking everybody, all of the presidents including, by the way, President Obama.


HANNITY: The President-elect telling our own Ainsley Earhardt the first thing what he is going to say in his inaugural address. We will get reaction from Bret Baier, host of "Special Report."

And later, drama building over the Super Bowl and at the halftime show, a report saying Lady Gaga was asked not to get political. Now the NFL allegedly says that is not true. We have reaction to all of that and celebrity snowflakes and the freak outs from Omarosa, straight ahead.



AINSLEY EARHARDT, CO-HOST: I want to ask you about your speech, the inauguration speech. Have you prepared your speech? What is the first line?

TRUMP: Well, I have prepared it. The first line is thank you, everybody, all of the presidents, including, by the way, President Obama and Michelle, who have been absolutely nice.

EARHARDT: What is the first thing you're going to do when you walk into the White House?

TRUMP: Well, I want to go to work. Monday is really the day that we start signing and working and making great deals for the country.


HANNITY: That was president-elect Donald Trump during his exclusive sit down interview with Ainsley Earhardt from "Fox & Friends." Earlier today Mr. Trump tweeted a photo of himself writing his inaugural address. It read, quote "Writing my inauguration address at the Winter White House Mar-a-Lago three weeks ago. Looking forward to Friday."

Joining us now with reaction, the author of a really terrific brand-new book, "Three Days in January, Dwight Eisenhower's Final Mission," the anchor, friend, support of the Fox News Channel's news division Bret Baier.  How are you, sir?


HANNITY: This is a pretty historic event. I'm sure you're going to be doing a lot of the coverage that's going on while this happens. It's happened 45 times in our history. It's an incredible thing to watch for those that maybe have not seen this in the past. Why don't you walk people through what they can expect on Friday?

BAIER: Martha MacCallum and I will be anchoring the coverage starting at 11:00 a.m. eastern time. And the swearing in for the 45th president, Donald J. Trump, happens just after noon, eastern. The swearing in will happen and then there will be his speech. The vice president will also be sworn in up there on the U.S. capital.

We are in our coverage will try to not talk a lot. We are trying to give as much natural sound of this moment as possible. And we will insert --

HANNITY: I'm glad I wasn't tasked with that because that's impossible.  But go ahead.

BAIER: I know. I know.


BAIER: But we're going to for the moment, because you're right, this is about history. This is about what we have just watched over the last two years, it's quite something, Sean. You nailed it. You had it down and knew it was going to happen. But for most of the country, they didn't.  And when it started with the escalator ride in June of 2016, through all of the debates, through the general election, even to election night when exit polls said that Hillary Clinton was going to win, this has been quite something.

And now, when Donald J. Trump puts his hand on the Lincoln Bible and his family bible and a sworn in as the 45th president of the United States, that will be very historic, and something that I think the world will want to see.

HANNITY: Now I know why I wasn't picked for the assignment because they probably assumed I wouldn't be able to shut up.

But in all seriousness, it is a pretty incredible moment whenever this happens, whether it somebody that I prefer there or not, it's irrelevant.  There is a lot to be said, though. You are in the news business. You and I have very different roles on television. I am the editorial page, you give straight news. I've known you for all these years. I really don't know -- I would have no idea who you voted for in this campaign and you wouldn't tell me if I asked you. And I wouldn't ask you.

But we have all these stories about fake news out there. You saw the breathlessness of the reporting of CNN and "Buzzfeed" that took place. We know about the collusion in the media of this campaign vis-a-vis WikiLeaks.  The opinion of journalism has never been at such a low as it is now. What you think is going on here? Have the American people been duped by people that say they are fair and balanced, in other words, outside of the FOX arena?

BAIER: Yes, I think there are clearly biases that have shown themselves throughout this campaign. It's one of the reasons of FOX News channel was set up to begin with. In this small niche of half the country that felt like they weren't getting news in a fair and balanced way. It's not just a slogan.

HANNITY: By the way, I'm three quarters through. The book is amazing. It talks about this transition from Eisenhower to JFK, very, very informative stuff I didn't know before. I urge everyone to get it.

BAIER: Let me just say one quick thing on Eisenhower's inauguration speech. The day before, January 19th, this is in 1953, he goes to church with Mamie, and he is trying to figure out how he can calm everybody down, because, believe it or not, they thought a general as president, there was a lot of fear, like what is this guy going to do? And he is in church in the pew, and he starts scribbling, and he scribbles out a prayer. And he decides that is how he is starting his inauguration speech.

So he gets to the podium after being sworn in and he tells everybody to bow their head and starts with a prayer. That was very Eisenhower. And people I think should look back at his presidency to see a roadmap of what we could see in the future.

HANNITY: That and the transition to JFK, pretty fascinating stuff. All right, Bret Baier, thanks for being with us.

And coming up, more celebrity snowflakes are freaking out over president- elect Trump. It doesn't go away. Now there is some drama brewing about whether or not Lady Gaga is going to talk about Trump during the Super Bowl halftime show. Good grief. When does this end? Up next, we get reaction from Omarosa, the one and only.


HANNITY: Welcome back to "Hannity." So the celebrity snowflake super storm rages on. Now there is drama about the Super Bowl and the halftime show.  Entertainment tonight earlier this week reported that a source told them that the National Football League has told Lady Gaga she is not allowed to talk politics during the big game's halftime performance. An NFL spokesperson quickly denied those rumors, releasing a statement to TMZ that reads in part, "This is un-sourced nonsense from people trying to stir up controversy where there is none. The Super Bowl is a time when people really come together."

Meanwhile, actor Robert De Niro was asked during an interview about people boycotting Trump's inauguration. Here was his response.


ROBERT DE NIRO, ACTOR: Whatever people do, they should do it fully because there is a lot of crazy has stuff happening now. It's just crazy. And maybe it's an act and we will see once he is in, but everybody has to be on guard.


HANNITY: No, we really don't. Joining us now, assistant to president- elect Donald Trump, the incoming director of communications for the office of public liaison, Omarosa is back. How are you? Good to see you.


HANNITY: I watch all this stuff and it never ends. These people cannot grow up and get over this. What's your reaction?

MANIGAULT: My reaction is this. I think that Hollywood has discovered they have no impact on what the people's will is. They have Beyonce and Cher and Jay-Z and it still didn't matter. The people went to the posts and they selected Donald J. Trump as the 45th president of the United States. And so now you have these celebrities, and they are panicking and freaking out because their influence is not going to impact what is happening here in Washington.

HANNITY: What amazes me, all throughout this election season, Omarosa, I talked about the millions more in poverty, millions more on food stamps, the millions more out of the labor force with no jobs, the lowest home ownership rate in 51 years, doubling the debt. Why don't they care? When are they going to face any sense of reality that their policies that they advocate didn't work? Why is that so hard for them to face?

MANIGAULT: I think because they've only known to just kind of follow their own path. And in Hollywood, I lived there for 13 years. They always vote for the Democrats and they always follow those policies, but they are realizing that America wants to see change. They are tired of being promised things that's not being delivered. In L.A. for instance, on skid row we have little children going to sleep without food without clothing.  Why not protest poverty? Why not go to Chicago and protest the violence?  Why not make an impact instead of squandering opportunities to unite this nation? They are using it to grandstand instead of make a change.

HANNITY: I've watched you on the "Celebrity Apprentice," and I have a very different opinion of you now that I've gotten to know you. What has Donald Trump done for you personally to make your life better?

MANIGAULT: First of all, he was very tough on "The Apprentice."

HANNITY: You think?

MANIGAULT: Oh, yes. Don't sit at a negotiating table with me. I'm one tough cookie unapologetically. But I have to tell you that being on "The Apprentice" changed my life. He selected me out of 250,000 candidates, 24 million people watched it every single week. And as a result of that, I've had an opportunity to come back here where it all began for me, here in Washington, and really work to be the change that we want to see in this nation. I am so honored to serve this president.

HANNITY: I'm glad I got to know the other Omarosa, different from the one I was watching.


MANIGAULT: Don't come in the boardroom with me.

HANNITY: I don't think I want to be in a boardroom battling Omarosa.


HANNITY: Good luck to you.

MANIGAULT: Thank you, Hannity.

HANNITY: And congratulations on your new job.

When we come back, a very important "Question of the Day" straight ahead.


HANNITY: Time for our "Question of the Day." What do you want President-elect Donald Trump to say in his inaugural address? Go to Facebook.com/SeanHannity, @SeanHannity on Twitter, let us know what you think.

Quick programming note. Starting tomorrow I will be in "Sin City," Washington, D.C., for President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration. We hope you will tune in. As always, thanks for being with us. We will see you back here -- we'll see you in D.C. tomorrow night.

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