First 100 Days

Omarosa rips reports of internal power struggles in Trump WH

This is a rush transcript from "First 100 Days," January 24, 2017. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARTHA MACCALLUM, FOX NEWS HOST:  President Donald Trump barreled through the work day at breakneck pace, pushing forward the forever embattled and delayed to Keystone and Dakota pipelines and working deals with the car folks.

I'm Martha MacCallum and it is day five of "The First 100."

So, while all of that was happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Democrats dug in their heels and grilled his nominees.  Here is day five.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  This is with regard to the construction of the Keystone pipeline.  We will see if we can get that pipeline built.  A lot of 28,000 jobs.

From now on, we're going to start making pipelines in the United States. We have a very big push on to have oil plants and other plants built in the United States.  We are bringing manufacturing back to the United States big league.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  I have behind me two pictures that were taken at about the same time of day in 2009 and 2017, which crowd is larger?  The 2009 crowd or the 2017 crowd?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  I'm not really sure how the size, though, I'd be happy to answer your question.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Just to give you a context for the obstruction, foot dragging that Democrats are imposing upon this new president, at this point, and President Obama's administration, there were 14 cabinet members confirmed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  I'm serious when I say that I'm worried about what my colleagues in the minority side are doing to the Senate as an institution.


MACCALLUM:  So late this evening, the U.S. Senate, after early consternation, voted overwhelmingly to confirm Nikki Haley to become the next U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.  In fact, they voted her 96-4. So she makes number four.

President Obama was way ahead of that with his cabinet at this point. Powerful line up for you tonight.  In moments, we're going to be joined by Omarosa Manigault, who is in her new office now at the White House.  Then, to weigh in on all of this Mark Thiessen, Austan Goolsbee and Charlie Hurt.

But, first, Trace Gallagher on the president's push to build some long- delayed oil pipelines.


TRACE GALLAGHER, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT:  Martha, this is all part of President Trump's end run around what he calls the U.S. government's, quote, "Incredibly cumbersome, long, horrible permitting process."  So not only will these executive orders revive the controversial Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipeline projects.  They are also meant to fast-track construction by streamlining the environmental review and permitting process.

The Keystone Pipeline would run from Canada to Nebraska and then, connect to existing lines that lead to U.S. refineries on the Gulf Coast.  The Canadian-based company building Keystone is already on board, saying, quote, "We appreciate the president of the United States inviting us to reapply for KXL.  We are currently preparing the application and intend to do so."

But the president's executive orders will not stop the environmentalists from protesting or filing lawsuits to stop the projects, which they have vowed to do.

Today, the Sierra Club blasted what it called Trump's dangerous decision. And in North Dakota, the Standing Rock Sioux tribe say they will also continue their fight against the Dakota Access Line because they say it threatens drinking water and runs under sacred land.  Dakota access will carry oil to a shipping point in Illinois.

Remember, the reason President Obama nix the pipelines in 2015 is because he wanted America to lead the fight against climate change and felt building pipelines would not have been putting our money where our mouth is.

The new administration clearly has a different take.  Watch.


SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY:  The president's actions today will create tens of thousands of new jobs for the American workers and move us greater towards energy independence, while at the same time, ensuring that we keep the environment as a top priority.


GALLAGHER:  President Trump also signed an executive order compelling the pipeline companies to use U.S. steel to build the lines.  The Canadian builder had said it would use about 65 percent of its steel from the U.S., the rest from Canada.  Unclear if that will be renegotiated.


Here with more, Mark Thiessen, "Fox News" contributor and American Enterprise Institute Scholar.  Austan Goolsbee is a professor at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a former advisor to President Obama.  And Charles Hurt is opinion editor for The Washington Times.

Gentleman, great to have you with us at the top of the show tonight.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Good to be with you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Good to be with you.

MACCALLUM:  Austan, let me start with you.  You heard Sean Spicer.  He said we're going to build the pipeline and we're going to do it environmentally responsibly.  And then you heard the other news that we are going to try to push for more U.S. steel to be part of this negotiation and that's going to create jobs.

So, I guess, the question is, what took so long and why didn't your administration do this much sooner?

AUSTAN GOOLSBEE, FORMER ADVISER TO FORMER PRES. BARACK OBAMA:  Well, first, I don't take a numerical estimate from Sean Spicer very seriously.  I think he just established that we should not take the numbers.


MACCALLUM:  We're going to get to that in a moment so go ahead.

GOOLSBEE:  He quoted tens of thousands of jobs.  And I am simply not going to comment on any number that he gives us.  I think that Donald Trump is going to overturn this.  It was expected.  I'm not surprised.  I think the fact that Donald Trump is doing this one day after announcing that he wants to renegotiate NAFTA, not apparently being clear on the point that NAFTA is what gives the United States the privileged, the access to the Canadian oil to begin with.  So they are definitely not going to start building a pipeline from Canada to the U.S. until we're clear on that.


MACCALLUM:  You don't think Canada is going to turn around and say, forget it, we're not going to do this.  Canada wants to do this.  This is in Canada's best interest.


GOOLSBEE:  Canada wants to build the pipeline?


MACCALLUM:  Mark, do you want to weigh in?


MARK THIESSEN, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR:  Yes, absolutely.  So I know that Austan doesn't want -- I know Austan doesn't want to take Sean Spicer's numbers.  But maybe he will take the Obama State Department's numbers.

The Obama State Department did a massive environmental study of this, of the Keystone XL pipeline.  They concluded that it would add 42,000 jobs and add $3.6 billion to the economy and blocking the Keystone XL pipeline would have almost no impact on climate change because the oil is going to get to market anyway.  And if you don't build the Keystone XL pipeline, they're going to do it by rail and by truck, which will actually increase emissions.

Again, this is the Obama State Department, would increase emissions by 42 percent because all those diesel spewing trucks and railcars are going to deliver the oil anyway.

So the Keystone XL pipeline actually reduces emissions, creates jobs, and adds billions of dollars to the economy.  This is a two minute decision and the first minute is for coffee.  It took for Obama eight years to say no. Donald Trump did it in his first couple days in all of this so good for him.


MACCALLUM:  All right.  I want to get to a bunch of this because it was a very busy day.  So let me push you forward to the infrastructure question.

Here's a back and forth with Senator Charles Schumer on The Hill today.

Let's watch.


SEN. CHARLES SCHUMER, D-NEW YORK:  We have heard President Trump's talk of disaster and third world infrastructure.  And we call on the president to persuade his Republican colleagues in the House and Senate to drop their opposition to investing in infrastructure and get on board with this plan.

MITCH MCCONNELL, R-KY, SENATE MAJORITY LEADER:  I don't think we ought to borrow almost a trillion dollars and plus up a bunch of federal accounts, incur a lot of additional debt, and don't build any projects to speak of. So, I can tell you what will happen again is a replication of the Obama stimulus package in 2009.


MACCALLUM:  So, tonight, the Kansas City star, Charlie, is reporting that there is -- the Trump team has are compiled a list of 50 infrastructure projects nationwide, totaling about $137.5 billion as they tried to push this through via a 50/50 public, private partnership on these projects. And, you know, to Mitch McConnell's point, we have heard about shovel-ready jobs before.  So what would be different this time?

CHARLIE HURT, OPINION EDITOR, WASHINGTON TIMES:  Well, this is where it's going to be very difficult for Republicans on Capitol Hill, because of course, they are not going to want to go along with something that has a big price tag on it.  But it's also where Donald Trump sees an opportunity to work with Democrats, as much as, you know, equally, as he will with Republicans.

And the thing about that, Martha, is that, that not only in his mind can he get a lot of things done that he wants to get done, by doing it, but it incredibly increases his power.

Because if he establishes those relationships with Democrats on The Hill, without the help from Republicans, then, you know, that just -- all that means is that he's got all that much more support on certain things and it gives him a lot of chips and an ability to sort of negotiate on other things.  And so while, you know, Democrats may be sort of gleeful at this split between Republicans, at the end of the day that is going to strengthen Donald Trump's hand.

One other thing that I think is important to keep in mind, though, is that, you know, this is a guy who is used to building.  He builds buildings.  He has his entire life.  He loves real estate.  He loves big projects.  And I think he views this as like the biggest Trump Tower ever built.  And he doesn't waste money.

He doesn't -- he likes to do these things.  He likes to do them efficiently.  And he likes to get a lot of pop for his money.  And so I don't think it is going to be -- you know, even if I don't like the idea of spending myself, I don't think it's going to be, you know, flushing money down the toilet on things like Solyndra and big waste of money like that.

MACCALLUM:  I want to get to one more and I've got about a minute and a half left.

But let's play Sean Spicer today and we'll let Austan chime in on the numbers here.  Let's play that.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Does the president believe that millions voted illegally in this election?

SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY:  The president does believe that. He stated that before.  I think he stated his concerns of voter fraud and people voting illegally during the campaign and he continues to maintain that belief.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Has the White House formally asks for a probe into this alleged voter fraud?

SPICER:  He won very handily with 306 electoral votes, 33 states.  He's very comfortable with his win.


MACCALLUM:  All right, I want you all to weigh in on this.  He believes it because he believes it. Austan?

GOOLSBEE:  OK.  Look, nobody could have said it better than that.  He believes it because he believes it.  There is evidence, I believe, that two people voted illegally and they were both voting for Donald Trump.  There is no evidence that 3 to 5 million people voted illegally.  It's really conspiratorial and insane.


THIESSEN:  I think the Trump administration is getting its sea legs.  They are stepping on their own story.  So why are we wasting time talking about phantom voters who voted illegally.  What we should be talking about the fact that he is announcing the Keystone XL Pipeline.  That he is announcing the Dakota Pipeline?

The other day, he went to the CIA, rapprochement with the CIA, talking -- you know, trying to build that relationship.  Again, they were talking about the crowd size.

This administration has to get the message discipline going because they are doing good things, but they are stepping on out their own stories.

MACCALLUM:  All right.  We're going to talk about this more with somebody from the White House communications department coming up.

Thank you, guys.

Good to see you.

So coming up, some media outlets claimed that the mood inside President Trump's White House is turbulent and rife with internal power struggles.

Ed Henry separates fact from fiction on that one.

And then, Omarosa Manigault, an assistant to the president, joins us to react.

Plus, growing outrage over the story of a gold star family member who was attacked by protesters when she tried to attend the ball in honor of veterans.  We got to hear that story, when Ryan Manion, whose brother was a hero for this country, joins us later tonight.


MACCALLUM:  Less than a week in.  Some media reports are painting a picture of a white house full of tension and internal power struggles like a drama.

We're going to get first-hand reaction from Omarosa Manigault, an assistant to President Trump.  But, first, we go to chief national correspondent Ed Henry joining us from Washington tonight.



A senior Trump advisor, tonight, is telling everyone should calm down.  A lot of this is being cooked up by the media, this so dissention.  And this advisor wants to focus on all of the executive actions President Trump has taken in recent days.

But the problem is some of the president's other top advisors seem to be more than happy to spill negative details about one another to media outlets like "The Washington Post," which they publish a front-page story with juicy nuggets alleging the president's son-in-law Jared Kushner is so eager to solidify his role as top dog, he's elbowing out others and tried unsuccessfully to block Kellyanne Conway from getting a top job within the White House.

Others whispering that Press Secretary Sean Spicer has been on thin ice with the president in part because Mr. Trump doesn't like the ill-fitting grey pinstripe suit that Spicer was Saturday and that he was musing the confidant that he should put on a darker suit.

Sure enough, in the last few days, the press secretary has been donning, yes, darker suits and doing better at the podium.  "The Post" also threw in speculation that Conway, who is the president's first choice for press secretary, but turned it down, is now trying to undermine Spicer.  People inside say that's not true and today on "Fox & Friends," Conway actually praised Spicer repeatedly.

Meanwhile, "Politico" is reporting the president has a shadow cabinet of top aides who are camping out at federal agencies.  Critics say these are where our White House loyalists pass was reporting back to Jared Kushner and could undermine the authority of the actual cabinet secretaries.

But White House insiders tell me, tonight, these aids are really just meant to bring some discipline over these cabinet departments and their vast budgets which really fit right into the president's message and his vow of bringing accountability to these massive federal agencies and how they spend our viewer's taxpayer money.


MACCALLUM:  Very interesting.  So, thank you, Ed.

HENRY:  Good to see you.

MACCALLUM:  Here now with some inside perspective in the halls of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is Omarosa Manigault.  She is an assistant to President Trump and director communications for the office of public liaison. Omarosa, good to see you tonight.  Thank you for being with us.


MACCALLUM:  So you heard that report and you saw the stories this morning, I'm sure.  And in some of those stories it says, you know, that they are based on dozens of sources within the White House, who are saying that there is quite a bit of tension between the Kushner camp and the Spicer camp and Kellyanne.

What do you think?

MANIGAULT:  Well, I think these stories are very ridiculous.  I have to tell you that the people who are close to this president have no problem going on record and talking about how efficient, how clear and concise this operation is.

And I find it very interesting that these stories quote these sources who will not speak up because they are not in the room.  It's fabricated, it's drama and it is not happening in this White House.

MACCALLUM:  And is there a shadow cabinet that exists, where there are people who are placed at agencies to report back to Jared Kushner, as was reported in that story?

MANIGAULT:  That is absolutely not true.  I will tell you that this president has run very large, successful organizations.  And one thing that distinguishes him as a leader is that he knows how to get the best out of organizations and out of individuals.  And he connects with people.  And that is exactly what this president is going to do.

On a different level than other presidents have never done.  He is someone who knows that in order to make sure that an operation is going smoothly, you have to know what's happening at all levels, but to call it a shadow cabinet is ridiculous.

MACCALLUM:  So when we look at the news conferences and we see Sean Spicer at the podium, we also see a whole bunch of other people in the room.  You were in the room, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Kellyanne Conway, all lined up on the side of that room.

When Josh Earnest was doing the job, we didn't see that level.  You know, senior advisors to the president sitting there.

Why is that?  Why are you guys all in there?

MANIGAULT:  Well, let's be very clear.  This White House is going to operate in a way that no other White House has.  I'm in the room and I can only speak for myself because civil rights is a priority for this president.

What's happening in the inner cities is a priority for this president.  The coalitions that I work with, they are priorities for this president.

So, yes, I'm going to be in the room.  I want to hear the questions of the press has.  I want to make sure that the messaging that we are developing collectively as a team, we are there in the room to support.  We are not there to spy in any way, to let Sean do his thing, but to America knows that this president cares about each and every one of them.

MACCALLUM:  All right.  You know, you all witness in that news conference the questions about the 3 to 5 million undocumented voters in this country, who Donald Trump believes threw the popular vote for him.

You have known him for a long time.  And I was listening to Charles Krauthammer a moment ago saying that he sees it as a character flaw.  That he feels that Donald Trump, cannot -- the president cannot sort of sit on it when he has the impulse to just speak out about something like that and then it dominates the news cycle and gets everybody talking about it as we are now.

MANIGAULT:  I think that Charles calling it a character flaw means that he knows nothing about this president.  I mean, Mr. Trump has his very strong views -- this president had very strong views on what has happened and what he's observed.  And he's been getting information that makes him believe that and sees that.

But I have to tell you that this president won with 306 electoral votes. And he --


MACCALLUM:  But there is no documentation to back up that contention about e to 5 million voters who voted illegally.  I mean, everybody would be happy to dig into that.  It sounds like, you know, obviously, it's a serious charge.


MANIGAULT:  Back in the press briefing, and I heard questioning after questioning about this.  And I think Sean addressed this best.  It's best that we recognize, one, he is the president.  He won handily.  And we're going to move on and focus on what Americans care about.  That's jobs. That's filling up their gas tanks and filling up prescriptions.  They are not focused on what the media is --


MACCALLUM:  No, but he was focused on it in the meeting, in the bipartisan meeting.  And that's why we are talking about it, because he brought it up. So I'm asking, you know, do you think that there will be more disciplined going forward on that front, because it does throw off and step on the message that you all are trying to put out there?

MANIGAULT:  With all due respect, this is our second day here.  And I think that this president has accomplished more in two days that most presidents have in a very long time.

MACCALLUM:  Maybe you are right about that.

MANIGAULT:  And so, I'm very proud to say that this administration, where Americans are first.  What's happening in their homes and their communities are first.  And we have seen that.  What he's accomplished in just two days.  Let's celebrate that and focus on that and not try to look at what's happened in the past.

MACCALLUM:  All right. Omarosa, thank you very much.  You are absolutely right.  And we have detailed all of the action that has been going on over the course of these first few days and it has been at a breakneck pace as we've said.

MANIGAULT:  And there is more to come.  There is more to come.

MACCALLUM:  All right.  We'll look forward to reporting on it.  Thank you very much.  Good to have you here tonight.

MANIGAULT:  Thank you, Martha.

MACCALLUM:  So coming up, Palestinian claims that one of President Trump's campaign promises could to start a war in the Middle East.  We're going to explain that just ahead.

Plus, a new media conflict to investigate.  Does President Trump's inaugural phrase "American carnage" deserve the ridicule that it has received from some of the media so far?  Or does it deserve praise for pointing out some of the issues in this country?  Dana Loesch and Richard Fowler up next on that.


MACCALLUM:  Breaking tonight, the debate over one of President Trump's most potent inaugural speech moments when he spoke about the, quote, "American carnage" that he plans to stop.  Watch.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  Mothers and children trapped in poverty in our inner cities, rusted out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation.  An education system flushed with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of all knowledge.

And the crime and the games and the drugs that have stolen too many lives and robbed our country of so much unrealized potential.  This American carnage stops right here and stops right now.



MACCALLUM:  It was a much talked about moment and the larger media pounced at what they called the, quote, "darkness" of that phrase.

But did President Trump have a point?

Trace Gallagher live in Los Angeles.

Hi, Trace.

GALLAGHER:  Martha, The New York Times began its article on Trump's inaugural speech by comparing it to other presidents, saying, quoting, "Abraham Lincoln appealed to our better natures and our charity in the midst of civil of war.  John Kennedy inspired us to serve our nations. Donald Trump gave us American carnage." And listen to two of MSNBC's hosts.



RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST:  Now, as of today, American carnage will be forever known as the theme for the inaugural address of the 45th president of United States.

UNIDENTIFIED MSNBC MALE HOST:  The Trump TV series has a title, "American Carnage"."


GALLAGHER:  Then, there is an article from the online magazine Slate titled the meaning of American carnage, where the author writes, quote, "There is a small problem with this image.  It's fantasy."

But critics say drawing a fantasy conclusion fails to consider the numbers so we checked.  It turns out there is no shortage of carnage like the murder rate, which the FBI says in the first half of last year was up more than 5 percent from the previous year.  And has risen significantly over the past two years.

The overall U.S. murder rate isn't as high today as it was in the 1970s and '80s, but in some big cities it's worse.  Chicago's 2016 homicide rate was up 59 percent from 2015.  Memphis saw a 56 percent increase.  And cities like San Antonio, Louisville and Phoenix were also up dramatically.

All told, the number of Americans murdered last year could fill a sports arena.  But the number of Americans who died from drug overdose could fill a stadium. In fact, the U.S. drug overdose rate in 2015 was more than triple the murder rate.  So, while many critics accuse the president of using his speech to generate fear, others say the numbers themselves are pretty scary.


MACCALLUM:   Thank you, Trace.

So joining me now, Dana Loesch, host of "Dana," on The Blaze TV and Richard Fowler, a Fox News contributor, nationally syndicated radio talk show host.

Good to have both of you with us tonight.


DANA LOESCH, HOST, DANA:  Thanks, Martha.


MACCALLUM:  You know, you look at those numbers and you think about the people who have been affected by them, in cities like San Antonio and Chicago and Memphis, where they are in many neighborhoods, living in a perilous situation and are afraid to go out at night, Richard.

So what is wrong with recognizing the pain that those people are feeling?

FOWLER:  I don't think there is anything wrong with recognizing the pain. I think the job of inaugural dresses, which we have seen in the past, is to inspire Americans to do more.  I mean George W. Bush did in his speech, Ronald Reagan, these idea that we are aspiring to be this great nation.  I think where Donald Trump missed the mark on his speech, that it was overall a good campaign speech, but it missed the mark when it comes to defining what makes America great again is.  When you think about the word carnage, which according to web, it means the killing of mass people, I don't really know if carnage is the right vocabulary word I would use if I was the Donald.  

MACCALLUM:  I wonder if you were a family who had lost a child to heroin overdose or if you lived in a community where you can't go outside at night, because of the violence that is happening in your streets, Dana, I think there are plenty of people in this country who might feel comforted, that instead of platitudes on that stage that day, they heard what they understand as they are reality and something that they want fixed.  

LOESCH:  Martha, what you just said there, right in that sentence, is exactly why Trump won on November 8th.  People are tired of platitudes. They are tired of cutesy little speeches where everybody talks about hope and change and instead, after the confirmation, you get a nightmare, an eight year long nightmare where people are losing their jobs and the labor participation rate has slowed by 4 percent.  Where you see millions have lost access to specialist, they have lost their health care completely or their premiums have increased to the point where they can't afford them, because of the un-affordable care act, they have seen jobs be crushed, they have seen manufacturing declined.  It has, by all accounts, by all of these Americans who have endured this, being carnage for them.  They have seen their dreams killed.  They have lost their children to drugs.  It has been incredibly awful.  And that is why there were so many people and Democrats.  
Let us not forget that one of the huge voting blocks that turned out for Donald Trump on November 8th were blue-collar Democrats who had long been counted as a base voter by the Democratic Party.  

MACCALLUM:   You mad great points, but when you look at the snarkiness that we saw in some of the response to this, Richard, you know this sort of Megadeth and it represents this and that, I do think a lot of people who listened to this or who see that the way its presented, think, you don't get to me, either.  You know, you don't understand what is going on in my life, either.  Again, what is wrong with recognizing the reality that so many people who voted for Donald Trump are feeling out there and wouldn't your party be better off if perhaps they didn't make fun of that?  

FOWLER:  I don't think anybody from -- I don't think any Democratic elected official has made fun of that, right?  But here is the truth.  The truth is that people want to aspire to something and beyond that, I think we Democrats are looking for, Trump voters and people who didn't vote for Trump, were looking for, are real solutions to the problem.  Trump didn't have any of those solutions and his "make America great" mean, he didn't tell us how he was going to fix it.  He talked and complete and total platitudes.  "I'm going to build a wall."  Nobody knows how he is going to build it.  Nobody knows where the wall is going to go.  I will repeal Obamacare.  


MACCALLUM:  Based on nothing of it and what we have seen the last couple of days, action after action after action so that is awfully tough.  

FOWLER:  Wait a minute.  We are still waiting for them to tell us what this "ObamaCare replacement" is going to be.  And they have it on the net.  They have talked on platitudes.  

LOESCH:  I have an idea on that.  

FOWLER:  It is going to be choice, this, that, vocabulary words don't mean anything.  

LOESCH:  I've a great idea as to what the replacement would be.  Why don't you go back and read all of the Republicans that have piled on.  

FOWLER:  But there is no bill filed now.  

LOESCH:  No, no, no, because that is where a lot of it is coming from. Don't talk over me, because you are afraid of it.  Republicans filed in and Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid allowed them to die.  

FOWLER:  Here is the thing.  

LOESCH:  American carnage is administrative.  

MACCALLUM:  that is a banned name, by the way.  

FOWLER:  American carnage means American death, according to Webster.  

MACCALLUM:  He is pointing out the reality, that people do experience.  

LOESCH:  It is an inconvenient truth.  

MACCALLUM:  Richard and Dana, thanks guys.  We will talk to you a lot next time.  So still ahead, what is really behind President Trump's America first promise?  One writer wanted to get to the bottom of that question, a phrase that offended some people.  He unravels it for us when he joins us ahead.  Plus, controversial campaign pledge from President Trump about the location of the U.S. Embassy in Israel is causing quite a stir in the Middle East.  Brooke Goldstein and David Tafuri will be here to debate that, coming up next.  


DONALD TRUMP, THE 45TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  And we will send a clear signal that there is no daylight between America and our most reliable allies, the state of Israel.  




TRUMP:  We will move the American embassy to the eternal capital of the Jewish people, Jerusalem.  




MACCALLUM:  Developing tonight, there is intense backlash to President Trump's pledge to move the U.S. Embassy for Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.  With some Palestinians living in Jerusalem, claiming that it will quote, trigger an explosion.  Here to debate, Brooke Goldstein and a Human Rights Attorney and Director of the Law fair Project.  David Tafuri is a former State Department official and former Obama campaign foreign policy adviser.  David and Brooke, glad to have both of you with us tonight.  Thank you for being here.  Brooke, let me start with you.  What is your take on this?  

BROOKE GOLDSTEIN, HUMAN RIGHTS ATTORNEY:  Well, you know my take is that there is a fundamental misunderstanding of the laws of cause and effect. Moving an office to Jerusalem is not is what is going to cost Islamist violence.  It is imam's preaching death and violence as a legitimate response to hurt feelings, preaching reestablishment of the caliphate and throwing the Jews into the sea is, what is the direct cause of violence? You know what else?  Islamist is angry about, cartoons of Mohammed, the failure to mutilate the genitals of young females.  The education of women and the western world also angers Islamists.  And just like we don't appease Islamist in those categories, we certainly do not appease Islamists when it comes to directing the foreign policy of the United States.  I think it is a wonderful move.  It is totally in compliance with not one, not two, but three acts of congress, including the Jerusalem embassy act of 1995 that directs the State Department to move its embassy to Jerusalem, the eternal capital of the Jewish state.  

MACCALLUM:  David, she lays out a good case.  What is wrong with that?  

DAVID TAFURI, FORMER STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL:  I applaud President Trump for saying today, through his spokesman, that he is not going to do this right away, and he is going to continue to look at the issues.  The reality is, is that each of our last three presidents, Obama, Bush, and Clinton, also set at some point during our campaign, they would move the embassy. When I got into office, they thought better of it.  The reason is that moving the embassy has no practical benefit for the U.S. or for Israel.  We should be thinking about strategies that are going to help improve U.S. interests in the Middle East right now.  That means defeating ISIS.  That means of solving the civil war in Syria, stopping the creation of failed states like Syria and getting the Middle East peace process between Israel and Palestine back on track.  

MACCALLUM:  I guess you could make an argument then.  

TAFURI:  This will not do any of those things.  

MACCALLUM:  Listen.  I hear your argument.  But you could make an argument that the things that we have done to sort of tiptoe around and hope that we will get backing from all of these countries really has not yielded fruit. It does not moving in embassy really make a difference when you look at all of the things that we have done to build a successful coalition against an Islamic extremism?  

TAFURI:  It has no benefit to the U.S.  It doesn't help us at all.  It doesn't help us do our job better in Israel.  It doesn't help us do our job better in the Middle East.  It doesn't help Israel, either.  If we want to try and make a statement about Israel, do something to support Israel. Provide more military support.  Invite Netanyahu here for a private meeting with the president.  Let's do things that have an impact.  This will incite violence in the Middle East and make it harder for us to get to Middle East.  

GOLDSTEIN:  I am surprised, David, that he would take that position.  You penned a brilliant op-ed and CNN saying that the last thing we want to do is give into the territorial aspirations of ISIS.  And that by allowing ISIS to continue, to think it can create an Islamic state, that is the appeasement of terrorism.  And when you argue against moving the embassy, and what they are advocating for is to move it to west Jerusalem, which no one disputes to be the capital of Israel, what you are doing is arguing for the Islamist notion of from the river to the sea of Palestine will be free of Jews.  You are encouraging appeasing terrorism.  There is a general - ok.  I will stop it there.  

MACCALLUM:  All right Brooke, thank you very much, you made a great point. David, you did as well.  Good to have you both here tonight.  Many thanks.  

TAFURI:  Thank you.  

GOLDSTEIN:  Thank you.  

MACCALLUM:  Still ahead, her brother paid the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our country.  But on Friday night, her mere presence and trying to enter an inaugural ball lead to what she describes as an assault by protesters outside.  We will speak with Gold Star family member Ryan Manion, straight ahead.  Plus, President Trump has taken heat for his "America first" message.  But what will that policy really mean during his presidency? Wall Street Journal columnist William McGurn wrote about that and he joins us here in studio coming up next.  



TRUMP:  We assembled here today our issuing a new decree to be heard in every city, and every foreign capital, and in every hall of power.  From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land.  From this day forward, it's going to be only America first, America first.  



MACCALLUM:  Another moment from President Trump's speech on inauguration day, as he vowed to uphold a campaign promise of putting America first. Some hit the president for his use of that phrase, suggesting that evokes a darker time in American history.  Here now, William McGurn Wall Street Journal columnist and editorial board member, who wrote a piece on this issue this morning in his always great Mainstream column, William, great to see you.  Thanks for being here today.  


MACCALLUM:  So, America first is, some people think, a dog whistle for white people first.  It also has historic connotations that Donald Trump has tried to separate himself from, your take?  

MCGURN:  My take.  First of all, congratulations, I'm a big fan, the whole family.  Second is the irony of this, I think Donald Trump means by America first, just America first.  We are going to have other countries assume their share of the burden.  I am not sure I'm on board with all of the policy.  But the idea that it is the 1941 America first, the arch enemy, next to FDR of the 1941 movement was Winston Churchill, because the America first movement saw him as trying to get us into England's war.  He just restored to the bust of Winston Churchill to the oval office.  I think lead from behind, President Obama's thing, was a lot closer to the original spirit of America first.  Plus, you have the president saying, he is going to destroy ISIS, so he is not saying, that this is not our fight.  He has appointed men like John Mattis, Rex Tillerson.  They are hardly cut from the 1941 cloth.  

MACCALLUM:  Yes, so when you look back at President Obama's perspective, you see him more as fitting into the America first, because he didn't really want to cross the red line.  

MCGURN:  Redline, you know the world would be peaceful or the Middle East would be peaceful if only we pulled our troops out.  The Iranian demonstrators who called for our support, you know, we had nothing for them, nothing to help Ukraine defend itself against Russia.  We don't know what Donald Trump is going to do on all of these issues.  But the idea that Donald Trump is America first in the 1941 cents, when we just had eight years of it from president Obama.  

MACCALLUM:  Which is in terms of the pipeline decision as an example, he is talking about, you know, we will look at the application again, but we want a whole lot more U.S. Steel involved in these products.  

MCGURN:  This is a lot of Donald Trump.  I love that he is building a pipeline.  I'm a little less pleased that he said we are going to put the things that you have to buy in American steel, which will make the cost go up.  It is kind of a mixed message in a lot of things.  I think trade is one of the areas where he is weak.  

MACCALLUM:  He is trying to put more people to work.  He is really angry that the steel companies have lost.  

MCGURN:  I am a free trader.  The idea -- this is what makes our public projects so expensive.  We put the wage requirements, we say, buy American and so forth, that is what sends the price.  

MACCALLUM:  William McGurn, always good to see you.  

MCGURN:  Thank you.  

MACCALLUM:  Thanks for stopping by.  So coming up next, it was an event that was meant to pay tribute to Medal of Honor recipients.  I believe there were 40 of them gathered, which is historic, last Friday night in Washington, D.C.  But it didn't stop protesters from attacking the people who wanted to make their way in to that ball and one of them was Ryan Manion, whose brother, Travis, was killed while he was on duty in Iraq in 2007.  He is an absolute hero who saved money.  So, she is here to tell us her story, which is extraordinary.  Stick around for it.  It is right after this break.  Stay with us.  


MACCALLUM:  Growing outrage tonight after Gold Star family members reveal that they were verbally and even physically attacked during last week's inauguration celebrations.  The two women, one who lost her brother, the other, her husband, both killed in service to our country, say that they first spotted the protesters on Friday and took video of them in their car as they were arriving at this event.  But the footage doesn't show what happened to them next when they got out of the car.  They say they were pushed and spat on and called vile names by these protesters.  Joining me now as Ryan Manion, whose brother, First Lieutenant Travis Manion, was killed in Iraq back in 2007, Ryan has worked on his behalf with Amy Looney with the Travis Manion Foundation ever since.  Good to have you here tonight, Ryan.  This is just an unbelievable story.  Welcome.  

RYAN MANION, GOLD STAR FAMILY MEMBER:  Thanks for having me.  

MACCALLUM:  So, explained to us, I wanted to talk about your brother, too. He is the reason that you were there and he is the reason that you have honored him with the rest of your life.  So, here you are, going to this event, to remember him.  And what was said to you, what was done to you when you got out of the car and try to walk in?  

MANION:  I can't repeat the things that were said to me, but I don't think I can repeat them on cable television, but we found ourselves in a situation where we had to walk into a group of about 75 protesters.  I honestly was not originally uncomfortable doing that, thinking that they had no reason to have any ill feelings towards us.  But we realized very quickly, as soon as we kind of came upon them, that there was a lot of hatred in their eyes and they just started screaming a lot of vile obscenities at us, spitting towards us.  For me, one of the most interesting things, they were yelling, "Get a job, get a job" and Amy and I, while we were terrified of the whole situation, the next day, when we were kind of digesting it all, we kind of laugh, because the idea of them telling us to get a job and our job every day is to instill character and our nation.  

MACCALLUM:  Did they have an idea that you were Gold Star families?  

MANION:  No.  And I don't even think that they knew that we were going to a veteran's gala.  I don't think they knew -- I think they looked it up, dressed up, knew that we were attending an inaugural event and immediately thought, you know, we are going to take our anger out on them.  

MACCALLUM:  That meant that they were yelling at you about.  Talk to me a little bit before I let you go about Travis Manion who was such a hero and saved many lives on the day that he died.  

MANION:  Yes, you know my brother was my best friend, the inspiration behind the Travis Manion Foundation.  Travis and Travis' good friend, Brendan Looney, they represent this generation of men and women who stand up and serve and for us, every day is about getting up there and making sure that we understand why they served and sacrificed.  And that is for people to peacefully protest.  But we need to come together, despite our differences, I think the one common thing we can all agree on is that we love this country.  I think it is time to open up a dialogue about how we move forward in a respectful and civil manner.  

MACCALLUM:  You are so right.  Ryan, thank you very much.  I'm sorry for what you went through.  And we thank you and your family for the service that you have all given to the country.  Thanks, Ryan.  See you soon.  

MANION:  Thanks so much.  

MACCALLUM:  So Ryan's noble behavior in the face of that anger brings us to our quote for tonight.  A founding father with some advice for us in these rancorous times, Thomas Jefferson said this.  "I never considered a difference of opinion and politics and religion, and philosophy, as a cause for withdrawing from a friend." that we can all take to heart during these 100 days and beyond.  If you have a quote that you would like to see at the end of the show, send it to me at or you can send me a tweet @MarthaMacCallum #First100, President Trump's big day tomorrow, and immigration news to come.  We will see you then.  

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