First 100 Days

Gingrich urges overhaul of White House press corps; ObamaCare architect on Trump's executive order

This is a rush transcript from "The First 100 Days," January 23, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARTHA MACCALLUM, HOST: Breaking tonight, you are looking live at the U.S. Senate. Lawmakers are in the middle of a debate on Congressman Mike Pompeo to be the next director for the CIA.

Good evening, everybody, from our brand-new studio tonight, I'm Martha MacCallum.

And it is day four of "The First 100." So even before his top cabinet picks are in place, President Trump diving into his first full day at the White House using executive authority and the bully pulpit to launch some of his signature campaign promises with a special focus on creating jobs.

First, he signed three executive orders this morning, including one formally withdrawing the U.S. from a controversial proposed trade deal with 12 other nations, you know that one as TPP. The president following that one with meetings with some of the country's biggest business and labor leaders, and two separate meetings. And then, he sat down with a bipartisan leadership from Congress, and then with Paul Ryan.

Here's what that looks like.


PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: A great thing for the American worker, what we just did. What we are doing is we are going to be cutting taxes massively for both the middle class and four companies. We just officially terminated TPP.

We are going to put a lot of people back to work. We are going to stop the ridiculous trade deals.

SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I know that Josh Earnest was voted the most popular press secretary by the press corps. I shot Josh an email last night letting him know that he can rest easy that his title is secure for at least the next few days.


MACCALLUM: Huge lineup tonight, including Newt Gingrich, a close advisor to President Trump. Plus, the first appearance of our newest contributor, former State Department Spokesperson Marie Harf.

But let's begin tonight and kick things off with Bill Bennett. Also, a Fox News contributor and former secretary of education.

Bill, good evening. Good to have you here with us tonight at "The First 100."




MACCALLUM: Great to see you, sir.

You watched that. You saw how busy his day was. What do you think of the first, sort of the day one, he calls it, of the Trump administration?

BENNETT: It really is day one. For those of us who try to take weekends off. You know, Monday is the first workday, let's face it. He had a great day. It was a terrific day. It was a presidential day.

Now I've heard a lot of people commenting on Fox and elsewhere, they are right. That, you know, Saturday was not such a good day with Spicer and all. And today was a much better day for the president. But it was more important than that.

There has been a question in the air whether Donald Trump can be presidential. Gee, he tweets. He talks about his hands. He talks about his hair. He worries about Arnold Schwarzenegger. This was a presidential day. And only a certain kind of president could have pulled this off, meeting with the business leaders, then, meeting with the union leaders.

I predict, by the way, Martha, he is going to steal a lot of union members as he did in the election. He will steal even more, get even more.  And he's going to get some of these union leaders, as he got their praise today.

Did you know that I think all of those union leaders at that meeting have voted for Hillary Clinton? All of those unions have supported Hillary Clinton?

MACCALLUM: I mean, it's shocking to see a Republican president sitting there on day one essentially at the White House surrounded by union leaders, listening to their grievances, hearing their thoughts. And as you pointed out, he managed to pull a good number of them over to his side during the course of this election.

Have they put to rest the sort of rocky start that was so much discussed over the weekend? The CIA briefing.


MACCALLUM: You know, there is mixed opinions. I mean, I went back and listen to it again, though. The first 10 minutes, the first 9 minutes, I would say were very straightforward. And he seemed to be getting a good response from that crowd. But he does tend to, you know, sort of maybe go on a few minutes too long and get into territory that that becomes the focus and then that's all you hear about in the press.

So, what do you think about it?

BENNETT: Are we listening to the clip?

MACCALLUM: No, I'm sorry. What did you think about how he did at the CIA?

BENNETT: Oh, yes, well, I thought he did fine. And by the way, you know, even though he digressed and talked about the crowd size and all that, he still got a great and hearty welcome. And when he talked about the press, it was still a hearty welcome. But he was off point.

Look, I hope to be with you guys for a long time and I'm a Trump supporter, but when they make a mistake, I'm going to say so. It was a mistake to fixate on the crowd. It was a mistake for Sean to be so angry and fixate on the crowd. But, Sean, recovered today and had an excellent day. And I think it was really, very, very impressive.

The president needs to focus on presidential things. And that's what he did today. The Mexico City accords, on abortion, you know, people wondered during the campaign whether he was serious about that, he is serious about that.

TPP, gone. Was he serious about that? He is serious about it.


MACCALLUM: The fact -- let me jump in on that with you, Bill, because as far as TPP is concerned, he's going to have -- he's going to run into some problems with Republicans on that, who are very big free-trade opponents and who think that scrapping that thing is a big mistake.

BENNETT: Yes, he will. He will run into problems with Republicans and he will certainly run into problems with Democrats. But, you know, problems don't bother him.

"The Art of The Deal," you know. He starts with recognizing their problems and he will meet people at a certain distance. But what this showed today, again, I want to go back to the point, is for all of those who said, is this guy just -- you know, how did we do this? Is this guy just -- is this just amateur hour. This was a very presidential day.

And if you looked at those meetings and listen to him at those meetings, he was, in a word, presidential, dignified and on target. And if we keep this pace up, the press is not going to have time to nitpick because these were big things he was talking about today.

MACCALLUM: And he is still working. He is meeting with Paul Ryan right now after a big long meeting with the bipartisan leaders.


MACCALLUM: So he is still at it and so are we.

Bill, thank you very much. Good to see you tonight.

BENNETT: Right. And those two are getting closer. And that's very important. Respect and affection between those two are getting closer -- are getting greater, that is good. Bye.

MACCALLUM: We'll watch it. Thanks, Bill.

So are you satisfied by what you've seen so far at home? Is there something that you wish that he had done first that he didn't do? Send me a tweet using #First100 and we will share some of those at the end of the show. So stick around for that.

And breaking right now, the Senate has just begun to vote on whether to approve the president's new CIA director, and we just learned why tempers are running so high over this.

Congressman Pete Hoekstra and former State Department spokesperson Marie Harf on that and on the breaking news as well.

Plus, two days after blasting the media for its coverage of the inauguration, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer walk back into the room today to face those reporters.

So, how did it go? Former Speaker Newt Gingrich next on the fallout when we come back.


SPICER: When we are right, say we are right. When we are wrong, say we are wrong. But it's not always wrong and negative.



MACCALLUM: Developing tonight for the first time since blasting the media over how they cover the president's inauguration, Sean Spicer went back into that room that was a bit uncomfortable over the weekend and he faced reporters in his very first real briefing as White House press secretary.  So take a look at how he did it.


SPICER: We had a tweet go out about Martin Luther King. Think about how racially charged that is. And someone rushes out and says to the entire press corps that the president of the United States has removed the bust from his office.

I mean, think about what this signal -- hold on --

JONATHAN KARL, ABC NEWS: He did correct himself and apologize.

SPICER: No, no, he actually apprised to, quote, "my colleagues." Where was the apology to the president of United States? Where was the apology to millions of people who read that and thought, how racially insensitive that was.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Well, you said that "This was the largest audience to ever witness in inauguration, period. Both in person and around the globe."

SPICER: Right. Both in witness and around the globe. Yes. In total audience, it was.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Total audience, but not simply in person.

SPICER: Right. But, again, I didn't say in person.

It's about a constant theme. It's about sitting here every time and being told, no. We don't think he can do that. He will never accomplish that. He can't win that. It won't be the biggest, it's not going to be that good, the crowds aren't that big, he is not that successful. The narrative -- the default narrative is always negative and it is demoralizing.

JIM ACOSTA< CNN: It's not always going to be positive.


SPICER: No, it's not. And sometimes, we will make mistakes. I promise you that. But it's not always got to be negative, Jim. When we are right, say we are right. When we are wrong, say we are wrong.


MACCALLUM: Fascinating, this after. In just a moment, we're going to talk to former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

But, first, we go to chief White House correspondent John Roberts, who was inside there in a very crowded briefing room today.

Hi, John.

JOHN ROBERTS, FOX NEWS NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hey, good evening to you, Martha. It was a very crowded briefing room. I haven't seen it that crowded since back in the early 2000s when this country was going through one of its darkest days. When everybody who was around, who was everybody wanted to be inside that briefing room to talk to Ari Fleischer.

Sean Spicer's demeanor today, boy, different than it was on Saturday.  I was in the briefing room on Saturday, when he got out and I thought he was channeling Ron Ziegler from the Nixon era when he tore the strap off the media. There was -- I said at the time was as wide as an Iowa cornfield.

I also remember back in the days of the Clinton administration when Joe Lockhart would get up there and he would get so mad that his eyes would bug out and you could see the blood rising in his face. I thought for a moment that Sean Spicer was kind of channeling both of those folks.

But, today, much different. Even told a joke when he came up to the podium and seemed far more reasoned in his arguments against the press than he had previously.

And, you know, it's interesting, too, today, Martha, is that we had three big executive orders from the president on taking the United States out of TPP, reinstating the Mexico City policy, hiring freeze.

We also hear that there are going to be executive orders coming down the pike in the next few days which will take both the Keystone and the Dakota Access Pipelines out of mothballs and put those back on the table.

We're going to be renegotiating NAFTA. And a lot of this briefing today was centered on who said what about win, when we were talking about crowd sizes, which really doesn't have too much of an impact at all on the American public. It is simply a point that can be argued back and forth.

What's also interesting, too, is that, traditionally, when it comes to the briefing, the press secretary might call on "The Associated Press" first, on Reuters or one of the big five networks, he went to some folks in that room there who we not normally would go to. He had them written down in the list. He went to "The New York Post" first, then he went to the Christian Broadcast Network.

So really trying to shake things up, I think here. And give an indication, Martha, that the status quo is not going to be the way that this White House proceeds.

MACCALLUM: It's really fascinating. John, thank you very much.

ROBERTS: Thanks, Martha.

MACCALLUM: John Roberts at the White House. Good to see you tonight.

And my next guest says that when it comes to White House press briefings, it may be time to adopt some unconventional practices.

Joining me now is Newt Gingrich, former speaker of the House and the author of the novel "Treason."

Good to have you with us, Speaker Gingrich.


MACCALLUM: You know, it' s fascinating watching all of that play out, you know. And to John Roberts' early point in there -- I mean, one of the reasons that so much time was spent at the beginning of the briefing on the crowd size issue was because Sean Spicer had come out with that statement over the weekend that, you know, put that squarely in the forefront and sort of force that issue into a back-and-forth that perhaps the administration could have avoided if they had just let it lie.

What do you think?

GINGRICH: I think that the absurdity of the elite media fixating, one channel apparently ran parallel pictures of the Obama crowd and the Trump crowd.


GINGRICH: Newspapers used pictures that were inaccurate. And I think John Roberts' bigger point is -- and the reason I would like to see them dramatically overhaul the entire operation of the White House and the Press Corps is, you know, the small in size group of people who are very, very important who talk to each other and nobody else, and they come up and decide, oh this is a really big issue.

I mean, deciding to pull out of TPP was a really big issue. Deciding to reinstate an even more aggressive Mexico City policy on right to life and stopping abortion. It's a really big issue. Having a hiring freeze is a really big issue. But the Press Corps is so focused on their own belly buttons that it's very hard for them to deal with what the country cares about and to get to the big issues.

I have suggested they go to a much bigger room and that at least one fourth of the people allowed in the room be citizens and actually, don't presume that some professional voyeur paid to do nothing all day except watch the White House is the only person who can ask an intelligent question.

MACCALLUM: I mean, I think it's a fascinating point to bring up. And, you know, that room is packed in there today. It may be that they want to make it as stuffy and uncomfortable as possible in that room, so, that the reporters say, you know, OK, please, let's move across the street, you know, to the conference center and do this.

And I do think it was interesting that he called first on The New York Post and Christian Broadcasting and Fox got a question. You know, there was a lot of backlash about that immediately on Twitter.

You know, look who they are calling on first. But, you know, when you look at how tough it was during the Obama years for Fox to get a question in for such a long time, you know, it does appear that they are trying to mix it up a little bit.

GINGRICH: Look, if a newspaper or a TV channel -- I mean, I watch an interaction on Sunday between NBC and somebody from the White House.  That was so hostile and so negative that it was just unbelievable. And you don't have an obligation to go back and pretend these are nice people. You don't have an obligation to say, you have to beat me up, you get to lie about. And this whole thing about the Martin Luther King Jr. bust is a really big deal.

At a time when we have racial tension in this country, at the time when there are very real concerns, anything which has turn out to be totally false, sent out by the pool reporter and repeated by some 3000 different people by the time they realize it was a lie. So it simply wasn't true.

So I think there are good reasons. I thought Sean did a great job today. He had exactly the right tone. He is a very professional person.  He did a great job with the Republican National Committee. And I think he is going to do a tremendous job in this role.

But you go back and look at Kellyanne Conway on "Meet the Press," and you realize, you know, what she was doing was totally unacceptable for NBC to act as hostile and as arrogant as they did. And there's no reason to call on NBC for three weeks.

I mean, you just say to the, fine, you have earned us not calling on you. We're going to call on 16 other people because at least they are not nasty.

MACCALLUM: It's a crowded room and there are a lot of people in it, who want to ask questions and it does look like things are shaking up and it's fascinating to watch.

Speaker Gingrich, thank you very much. Great to see you tonight.

GINGRICH: Great to be with you.

MACCALLUM: So, big news breaking tonight.

After hours of intense debate on the Senate floor, the Senate just moments ago confirmed the president's pick for CIA director. Pete Hoekstra and Marie Harf coming up next on that.

Plus, big news from the White House late today on President Trump's plan for the Supreme Court. Judge Andrew Napolitano on that straight ahead.


MACCALLUM: Breaking moments ago, after weeks of fighting between the Trump administration and the Intel community, the president's pick to lead the CIA was just confirmed moments ago.

The vote confirming representative Mike Pompeo to be the new CIA director came after he was initially denied and delayed by Senate Dems on Friday, which angered the administration.

Chief national correspondent Ed Henry with the latest from Capitol Hill tonight, our nation's capital.

Ed, good to see you.


ED HENRY, FOX NEWS CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Martha, great to see you. It's interesting, because this is someone, Mike Pompeo, his credentials have never been in question. He was somebody who was first in his class at West Point. Then after serving the army graduated from law school. On Capitol Hill, he has been serving on the House Intelligence Committee. But what is fascinating is there was a behind-the-scenes struggle before Pompeo was confirmed tonight that led Republicans to charge of the Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer lied to them.

When President Trump made the CIA his first visit to a federal agency on Saturday in order to demonstrate that he is trying to mend fences with the intelligence community, he lashed out at a Schumer, you will remember, over the fact that Pompeo was still in limbo over the weekend.

Well, it turned out there was a major behind-the-scenes struggle because Schumer had promised Republicans that Pompeo, as a key member of the national security team, would get a floor vote on his confirmation on inauguration day, not today, but way back on Friday.

But then, the day before the inaugural, Democrat Ron White started making noise about delaying the floor vote. So The Weekly Standard reports that Republican Senator Tom Cotton sprung into action and demanded that Schumer keep his word.

After Donald Trump was a sworn in, Cotton got into more space on the Senate floor and demanded an explanation. Schumer told the Republican to lower his voice and to take this conversation off the Senate floor. And he said that if Cotton had been around eight years ago, he would have known that they did not confirm President Obama's CIA director on day one, either.

That did not sit well with Tom Cotton, an army veteran, who told Schumer, quote, "Eight years ago, I was getting my ass shot at in Afghanistan, so, don't talk to me about where I was eight years ago."

Now Schumer claimed he was only speaking for himself when he made this deal with Republicans to have the vote on the inaugural, but it was pretty interesting that he was saying, look, it was just me saying it. I couldn't get my fellow Democrats to go along with his vote. It suggests that Schumer may have some trouble keeping his caucus in control and that this whole, you know, relations may be very strained, Martha.

MACCALLUM: That's what we call good color and great background. Thank you very much, Ed.

HENRY: Good to see you.

MACCALLUM: Good to see you tonight.

So now here with more, let's bring in Pete Hoekstra who is the former House Intelligence Committee chairman and Marie Harf, former spokesperson for the CIA and a former spokesperson for state as well, tonight making her debut with us as a Fox News contributor.

Welcome, Marie. Good to have you here tonight.

So you listened to all that back and forth, Marie. And I'm sure it takes you back in some ways. But why would Mike Pompeo, given his credentials, be held up at all?

HARF: Well, it's great to be with you and happy to be here starting out on your show.

I think that 72 hours is not an unreasonable amount of time to allow some senators do have some more debate. In the previous administration that I was a part of, we had hundreds of days that nominees had to wait.  The first secretary of defense in history filibustered. So it's a little rich now to hear Republicans complaining about how long the CIA director had to wait. 72 hours. He's gotten through tonight. And we will see what kind of CIA director he is starting tomorrow.

MACCALLUM: Pete Hoekstra?

PETE HOEKSTRA, FORMER HOUSE INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: Well, I think the bottom line is the Senate needs to change.

President Obama had seven nominees approved by the first, by inaugural day and Donald Trump has had two. But I think what the Senate now needs to do and what the American people are going to demand to the Senate that the executive branch is changing.

The House has changed, but the Senate is going to have to become more responsive. And I am looking forward to the day where Donald Trump starts tweeting out and starts tweeting out to the Senate, why are the senators not here on the weekend, approving my cabinet picks, passing tax reform, and doing a number of different things that need to get done to help make America great again.

He is going to put a tremendous amount of pressure on the Senate, so, that the government will work for the American people once again.

MACCALLUM: It's a great point. I mean, what we've seen already that President Trump works straight through the weekend. He is still working right now. It's about 7:30 at night. Mr. Hoekstra, I want to stay with you on for a second, because you made a very strong charge against John Brennan. You say he was a political CIA director and that you believe that Mike Pompeo can wipe that slate clean.

Tell me about that.

HOEKSTRA: Yes. I really expect that Mike Pompeo. He has said in his confirmation hearings, I'm going to focus on providing the best intelligence, the best information that I can to the policymakers of this country, so, that they will be informed to make good policy decisions. I have met and worked with John Brennan.

Personally, it's never been much of a pleasant experience. You know, this is the guy that released, or you know, put in place, the Trump file, the Trump-Russian file and attached it to a daily brief and somehow that got public. That should have never been there.

John Brennan, and I think this is why you saw the strong response and the positive response that Donald Trump got on Saturday from rank and file CIA members.

They want to get focus back on delivering intelligence and get this agency out of politics. They sought under John Brennan and they are hopeful. And I think they are confident that they are not going to see it under Mike Pompeo. They want to do their jobs and get out of politics.

MACCALLUM: I mean, we remember the Benghazi videotape that was given as a reason for the uprising there. We remember also intelligence officers, Marie, who wanted to put a more forceful report forward on the progress that ISIS was making and their concerns about that, who were told to tone it down.

What about the charge that the Obama CIA was politicized?

HARF: Well, Martha, that report about intelligence officers and ISIS wasn't actually about the CIA. I think it was about the defense intelligence analysts.


MACCALLUM: Another branch of the intelligence agency, but anyway --


HARF: Right. No, no. But when it comes to CIA, look, John Brennan was a career CIA officer. And I served the CIA under George W. Bush and under Barack Obama. And I did not see either time, under either administration when I was there, intelligence being politicized. We have seen what happens when it is and we've seen how bad that is for the country.

I will be curious to see what Mike Pompeo was like a CIA director. Are we going to see the Mike Pompeo who was on the Intel committee? The way he spoke during his confirmation hearing or we going to see the Mike Pompeo who was on the Benghazi committee? Who disagreed very strongly with some of the intelligence community said who had been very outspoken about the Iran deal, for example, which the intelligence community had quite a bit of analysis on that may not be in line with the Trump administration politics.  So will he stick out for the CIA officers when it maybe isn't political convenient? I think it remains to be seen.

MACCALLUM: We will leave it there. Pete Hoekstra, thank you very much.

HOEKSTRA: Thank you.

MACCALLUM: Marie Harf, welcome, great to have you here tonight.

HARF: Thank you.

MACCALLUM: Also, reports that President Trump has a front runner in mind to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court. Judge Andrew Napolitano is my guest next.


MACCALLUM: President Trump has an ambitious plan for the first 100 days.  One of the biggest and most impactful announcements will be his choice to fill the Supreme Court vacancy. Now, CBS News reporting that Denver Federal Appeals Court Judge Neil Gorsuch is the leading candidate. So, who is Judge Gorsuch? Trace Gallagher looking into this for us on our west coast newsroom. Good evening, Trace.

TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Martha. When it comes to his interpretation of the constitution, Judge Neil Gorsuch certainly fits the conservative archetype. Gorsuch considers himself, an originalist, meaning, he believes we should abide by the constitution as it was originally written, not as a living document to be adjusted along with political views. And in a 2016 study of 15 potential Supreme Court nominees, Neil Gorsuch ranked second in terms of Scalia-ness, mainly because life Justice Antonin Scalia, Judges Gorsuch thinks criminal law should be clear and interpreted in favor of defendants, even if that hurts the government's prosecution rate. And like Justice Scalia, Judges Gorsuch is skeptical of efforts to purge religious expressions from public places.  In fact during the 2013 hobby lobby case, Gorsuch agreed that Obamacare could not force corporations to provide their employees with health insurance that covers abortion. For now, Gorsuch sits on the tenth U.S. Court of Appeals, where he was appointed by George W. Bush. He is a graduate of Harvard law, was a Marshall scholar at Oxford, and clerk for Supreme Court Justices Byron White and Anthony Kennedy.

In the 2000 election, he also participated and lawyers for Bush-Cheney.  And at 49 years old, experts say Gorsuch is primed, for his own extended run on the Supreme Court. And while Neil Gorsuch is being bandied around as a top choice, others, such as 11th circuit Court of Appeals, Judge William Pryor, seventh circuit court Judge Diane Sykes, and Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larson are also getting their fair share of attention. The Trump administration will say only that a selection could come in the next couple of weeks. Martha.

MACCALLUM: Busy times. So, here now with more is Judge Andrew Napolitano, Fox News Senior Judicial Analyst and Judge you have met with President Trump to discuss the Supreme Court pick. What do you think about Neil Gorsuch?

ANDREW NAPOLITANO, FOX NEWS SENIOR JUDICIAL ANALYST: Well, Judge Gorsuch is a very high on the president lists. The president, when he was a candidate, released two lists, which totaled 21 people. And they didn't exactly rank them. But in this interesting test about Scalianess, a word that the late Justice Scalia would roar over it, have you ever heard of his name. George Gorsuch finished very high. So he is basically a traditionalist and his views on things like right to life and guns, which is very important to the president. He is an originalist, meaning, he believes that the meaning of the constitution was fixed at the time it was ratified and was changed only at the times that was amended. It is not to be changed by the public's view of it or, as Justice Ginsburg has argued, a living document to meet the political needs of the time. When you quantify all those many, many opinions, he has been an appeals court judge for ten years. You rank them, Judges Gorsuch ranks very high.

MACCALLUM: Religious liberty also appears to be very important to him, which could go a long way with the evangelist community that was very positive.

NAPOLITANO: If President Trump nominates Judges Gorsuch, he will be producing exactly what he said he would be producing, a younger version of Antonin Scalia.

MACCALLUM: All right. I want to ask you another question about ACA, the Affordable Care Act, and the move that President Trump made on Friday, because you put a very fine point on how revolutionary you believe the wording was, because a lot of people were saying, what did he mean by that?  To make it easier, to ease the burden, explain.

NAPOLITANO: The Affordable Care Act gives a lot of discretion to the secretaries in the president's cabinet who will enforce it, the Attorney General, Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of Health and Human Services and they pass that discretion on to the thousands of people that work for them, who will enforce it. President Trump, and disorder, the first order that he signed, he had only been president for four hours, he said, I don't want you taxing anybody, I don't want you finding anybody, I don't want you making life difficult for anybody, because I believe that this law is not going to exist much longer.

And if you have -- this is the truly revolutionary part -- if you have a clash between an individual and the government and you can exercise your discretion, I want your discretion to be exercised in favor of the individual and against the government. Martha, Thomas Paine would be happy in an argument like that. I have never, ever seen a president or governor say that people in forcing his or her laws go against the government and in favor of the individuals. Truly revolutionary and again, exactly what Donald Trump said he would do.

MACCALLUM: Common sense, we'll call that.

NAPOLITANO: Yes, Revolutionary Common Sense.

MACCALLUM: Good to see you, sir. All right so coming up tonight, new reaction from one of the Obamacare architects to what some are calling a bomb that was thrown by the Trump administration right into the middle of that after Ezekiel Emanuel, straight ahead. Plus, we will show you what happens when a Trump supporter happens to sits down next to a woman who does not like the president one bit. And on the receiving end of that tirade which I know you see today online, unbelievable. We will be here tonight, live. We will be back.


MACCALLUM: Breaking tonight, brand new reaction now on day four, of the Trump presidency to what he did on day one, when he shot an arrow through the heart of President Obama's beloved Affordable Care Act. Today, everybody trying to figure out what that move means exactly. Here is The Washington Post declaring, "The executive order, Trump tosses a bomb into fragile health insurance markets." But today, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer strongly disagreed. He said the mandate that will stay as is the one that delivers what was originally promised to Americans.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you believe that you have the mandate to be able to force it through what you had talked about replacing ObamaCare?

SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Well I think what we have is a mandate to make health care more accessible and lower cost. That is what the American people were promised under Obamacare. And I think it is not a question about a mandate and it is also not about forcing anything. It is about what is doing the right thing. It's about providing people what they have been promised.


MACCALLUM: Joining me now, a man who knows a bit about this law, one of the Chief Architects of Obamacare, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel. Thank you very much for being here tonight. Good to have you with us.


MACCALLUM: So, Mr. Trump signed an action to "grant a relief to ease the burden from financial and regulatory burdens of this Obamacare act," what do you think?

EMANUEL: The executive order is cryptic. No one really knows what it means. He also did say that if you make regulatory changes, you have to follow the law and make regulatory changes that require a common period and a notice period. Those are actually take months. So, it doesn't actually mean anything immediately. And it is unclear what the burdens are that he wants to lift. I think if you run to the news conference, I think everybody could rally around the claim that we want lower-cost health care and we want to make sure as many people as possible get health insurance.  That seems like, actually one of those unifying bipartisan claims. I think that is the place we need to move. As the president's officials will know, that is easier said than done. Lower-cost is not the easiest thing to achieve in health care. Many of us put in a lot of policies under the Affordable Care Act to try to get a lower cost and we did moderate cost for five years. But it's going to be hard work.

MACCALLUM: I mean we know, just from the numbers, that people pay more.  The premiums have risen. The people that were supposed to get into this program opted out of it, the fines never happened, so, that didn't get into the bottom line, either.

EMANUEL: Wait, wait, wait, wait a second, you are saying a lot of things which are completely true. 22 million people did get health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.

MACCALLUM: All right. Let me stop you right there.

EMANUEL: Wait a second and many people did have fines levied against them, but this is the first year, you are going to have fines, because of the way the delay works in enforcing the mandate.

MACCALLUM: You know, an analysis of looking at that 20 million, Johnson Gruber, who is one of the original architects, as well, and who push this plan very hard and you know what, it turns out that 60 percent of the people who enrolled, if ACA is gone, they will still be covered under Medicare. He makes a very compelling argument that also 5.2 additional -- let me say one more thing, 5.2 additional million people sort of float on and off of it, depending on what their income is. So the idea that these people were all covered under ACA doesn't really hold up.

EMANUEL: I think you are confusing several points. First of all, 22 million people did get coverage from the starting point in the end of 2013 through today, did get covered, either through Medicaid or the exchanges.  Some of those people might be eligible for Medicaid if the Affordable Care Act goes away, but just a few days ago, the congressional budget office look at the proposals to get rid of the mandate and concluded --

MACCALLUM: Right. There is a new bill being put forth by Republicans --

EMANUEL: The CBO did put in a replacement program. That is correct. You will notice of the Republicans have not actually agreed on a replacement program. It is very hard --

MACCALLUM: This pushes a lot of the management of this to the states and direct grant blocks to the states, which is the opposite of what Obamacare wanted to do which was to centralize health care at the federal level.  They are saying that didn't work. Let's push all this money towards the state and have it manage in a way that gives a lot more direct relationship between patients and their doctors and the clinics that are local that manage them. What is wrong with that?

EMANUEL: Well, first of all, let's be clear what the Collins-Cassidy proposal is. It is to say, states that want to keep Medicaid expansion and the state exchanges, they can keep Medicaid expansions and the state exchanges in the federal government will continue to pay the bill. That also includes states that want to have the federal government run their exchange. So that would actually keep the Affordable Care Act in place.

MACCALLUM: They are saying if you like it you can keep it.

EMANUEL: And the second part is, if you don't opt for that, you could opt for a situation, where we will auto enroll people into a plan, still left a little vague what it is and they will get $5000 health savings account to pay for other medical expenses. That has not been very well flashed out.  It is not clear how many people that will cover.

MACCALLUM: We thank you for being with us tonight. We will go through this process together as a nation as we repeal and essentially replaced.  So we hope you will come back.

EMANUEL: Let me assure you, this is going to take many months because there was no agreement on the Republican side, what a replacement will look like.

MACCALLUM: Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, thank you very much.

EMANUEL: Thank you.

MACCALLUM: A woman who was kicked off a plane after she laid into another passenger with a blistering anti-Trump tirade, the man she attacked is here with us live, coming up next.


MACCALLUM: Tonight, and ugly post-inauguration exchange aboard an airplane that went viral. A woman laid into her seatmates, because he had the gall to say that he was in D.C. to celebrate her new president. She and her husband were kicked off that flight. Watch this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She has called me names and insulting me just for sitting down say things that I came here to celebrate today.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is there going to be a problem?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would like for him to change seats?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No. I'm going to get somebody.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well you don't have (inaudible).

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well I will get somebody.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You pretend you have the moral high ground, but you put the man's finger on the nuclear codes. That man doesn't believe in climate change. Do you believe in gravity? Did you know gravity is disappearing?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Grab you coat and we are going to have to take you off this plane right now. Come with us.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No. I paid for this sit and I am sitting. He is in my face.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I need you to grab your belongings.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am going home now. My mother-in-law, his mother, just died. I am going home now. There is no way I'm getting off this plane.


MACCALLUM: Oh, but she did. That woman and her husband were escorted off the plane and Scott Koteskey is the unfortunate person who had to sit there and be on the receiving end of that tirade, Scott, good evening to you.  Oh, my goodness. All I could think when I heard that, her husband sitting next to her, has his hand like this, oh, my gosh, this poor man has to put up with us all the time. What was that like?

SCOTT KOTESKEY, TRUMP SUPPORTER: It was pretty crazy, Martha. You know, it escalated. There really was no escalation. She just kind of, as soon as I began to sat down, she asked me if I was there to cheer or protest, I said I was there to celebrate --

MACCALLUM: Did you have a button or a shirt that made her instantly lay into you?

KOTESKEY: No apparel or nothing. I just told her that I was there to celebrate democracy. It was 0 to 60. And she just came out to me.

MACCALLUM: She was very insulting. You think about tolerance and the things that some people feel Donald Trump doesn't represent for them, she sort of checked off every one of those boxes in the things that she said to you.

KOTESKEY: And her display, she kind of (inaudible), yeah. I don't know what she was feeling, or what her personal situation is. But she was very adamant about her feelings that day.

MACCALLUM: She made comments about your personal appearance. She used the f word at you, did she not?

KOTESKEY: No, she did. And there were many different -- yeah, she said I was invading her space and that I wasn't to look at her or talk to her or anything on the entire flight.

MACCALLUM: What was the reaction of everyone else on the plane, Scott?

KOTESKY: Everyone else was equally uncomfortable as I was. Everyone had kind of cheered as we saw her being ejected, because I think everyone was made uncomfortable by her, as much as I was.

MACCALLUM: We just have some pictures that she was escorted off the plane.  The airlines said the female passenger was insulting passengers in the boarding area. And on board the aircraft, we standby on decisions to remove the disruptive passenger. Do you have any plans to bring charges or anything else further in this?

KOTESKEY: No, absolutely not. I wish noel on her. Maybe they were just having a bad day or something. I just wanted to show them the love of Jesus that day.

MACCALLUM: Scott, you are a generous person.


Thank you for sharing your story with us. It is good to see you tonight.  I am glad for the rest of the plane was very gracious toward each other and said a better example. Thank you, Scott, good to see you.

KOTESKEY: Thank you, Martha.

MACCALLUM: So some ugly comments were made during the inaugural but perhaps the meanest game from a "SNL" writer who has now been suspended.  We can report, I won't repeat what she said about the president's youngest son, but her statement is our quote tonight. She said, "I sincerely apologize for the insensitive tweet. I deeply regret my actions and offensive words. It was inexcusable and I am so sorry."

Ten-year-old Baron Trump's big sister pushed back ever so gently with this kind tweet today.  "My youngest brother proves he is a baby whisperer, while my father signed his first executive orders." Nicely done, by Ivanka Trump and that picture showed there, he is playing peek-a-boo with Ivanka Trump's youngest child.

And earlier in the show tonight, we ask you what you think of the Trump presidency so far. Here's what you said. Tony tweeted this -- "President Trump should immediately cut off funding to sanctuary cities." David said, "I wish the border wall construction would have started on day one." Joshua is happy, he said, "It has been a great day for the American people." No way he could imagine a better start. A good start here in our new studio. We'll see you tomorrow night.

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